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Heart of A Woman- My New Blog

“IF YOU’RE GOING TO LIVE, LEAVE A LEGACY. MAKE A MARK ON THE WORLD THAT CAN’T BE ERASED. Maya Angelou

This is the first post on my new blog. I’m just getting this new blog going, so stay tuned for more. Subscribe below to get notified when I post new updates.

A Daughter’s Heart

There are relationships we all treasure, one’s that we hold close to our hearts. Like the ones we have with our children, grandchildren, family and friends.

I have that kind of relationship with both my children, with my daughter I have those long chats on the phone, talking about some pretty deep stuff, those girl chats. She has always been a sweet soul, loves people and animals, cares for what is right and not afraid to stand up for truth. The older I get the more I treasure our weekly girl time, I see such a transformation to such a beautiful woman, from the adorable kid, that rescued stray animals and people, to a strong vibrant, confident woman. How I longed for one of those close relationships with my own mother, unfortunately not until the end of my mom’s life did we really get to know each other.

I was my daddy’s girl, I loved my mom but our relationship was always performance based, I came to the point later in life it didn’t really matter. I had God’s approval, and that of the two beautiful children, and a whole lot of good girlfriends.

When my mom, was diagnosed with cancer, my daughter and I flew in to spend some time with her and my step dad. She lived on the other side of our country, which meant a lot of time on the phone and writing notes and sending her cards of encouragement.

We had long chats on the phone about life, I understood as an adult that her life as a young girl was not an easy one. Her own mother had died when my mom was seven years old, her mother left behind a new born baby and six sons.

Her dad was a very strict and religious man, my grandfather was always good to us, but certainly not warm and fuzzy grandfather by any means. My mom loved her dad, but some of the stories she shared with me came from a little girl’s wounded heart.  Coming from that perspective as a woman was very different than being a young child and thinking no matter how good you were or how much you accomplished  or how perfect you tried to be it was just never enough. I became a driver and over achiever, if I failed at something I was over critical of myself and others, the bar was set so high I couldn’t possibly achieve it. And as much as I had grown to understand her, I didn’t want to be the same mother to my children. I tried very hard, not to, it took a lot of work, and many years of counselling. I learned to forgive her, my time spent with her towards the end of her life, I saw a woman I didn’t recognize, she was so very thin as the disease was destroying her body, I felt only mercy for her. This was not the woman I knew at all, she bragged to my family about me and how much I had done and accomplished and what a good mother I was. It hit me pretty hard, as those are words that I needed hear long ago. I’m not sure my mom ever learned to love herself, she also grew up in a generation where you didn’t have a voice. In fact I remember my dad, saying he was told as a child not to speak unless you were spoken to! Wow, that is so sad, where do you go when the world is too big for you and as a child to be comforted by a parent. There were many good things about my mom, unfortunately that nurturing, emotionally available part was not there.

I remember one particular conversation with her my mom she had stated, “We didn’t talk about the skeletons in the closet”, and we didn’t talk about how we felt”. So where does a seven year old child go when her mom dies, the woman that held her family together. With that kind of trauma and grief, I wondered who hugged her close, who was her comforter, who did she run too when she missed her mom so much! My mom never spoke about the death of her mother, I couldn’t help but wonder what she did with all that pain, because unaddressed pain, can come out as a whole lot of anger. It may have explained why her reactions were so severe and why her anger was deposited on us, unfortunately. Speaking from my own understanding as I watched my young children deal with the sudden loss of their dad. They had  however a safe place to run, a place where comfort was offered, my heart broke as I know that this wasn’t something that I could kiss away, unlike the scrapes and boo boos they had after a fall. But I understood the trauma of loss, of a young father, husband and friend.

My childhood was pretty rocky at times, my dad travelled and my mom was left with the four of us during the week. As much as their divorce was probably necessary, it still was hard to deal with, as it was messy and deeply affected all of us.

The one thing that my daughter and I speak about is self-love, something I find uncomfortable, but without self-love, how do we love others. I mean the kind of love that is balanced, not boastful and arrogant, the kind that God mentions, a healthy love and confidence. Even my generation has a hard time sharing certain feelings, we were raised, to put everyone before ourselves that is fine to a point but when we neglect our own needs and desires we are not loving ourselves. I find at this particular time in my life, I do some deep, deep soul searching, perhaps reaching a much deeper level spiritually and a better understanding of my own mother has helped. I was so glad that I got to spend that time with my mom, I was happy we could talk about the tough stuff, the stuff she couldn’t talk about, perhaps those conversations she longed to have with her own mother. I’m happy to have had that time, over the phone and through her letters and cards. I remember asking mom, “are you afraid to die”, her reply, was one I didn’t expect. “I’m not afraid, not sure I’m ready to leave just yet”. Mom, lived two years longer than she was given, so I concur, she wasn’t ready yet. I truly miss her, but I’m so very grateful we had the time to get to know each other better, for me to have spent long overdue time with my mom. I so treasure those calls from my daughter, and believe she has taught me a lot about self-love and acknowledging my own feelings.

But I also appreciate her heart, and honesty, that she is able to ask the tough questions, and explore her own heart.

So grateful, to share my daughters heart.

Shalom~

Posted byjazzyjan53Posted inUncategorizedEditA Daughter’s Heart

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Food for Thought

Where Strong Women Go-To The Feet of Jesus

Someone close to me, recently asked what was wrong with me, ‘you have always been such a strong women?’ After having a mini-melt down in their presence.

My reply was, ‘No I am not, always a strong woman’, even strong women have their moments of being overwhelmed. Well we do and you know what that is ok!

So where do we go when ‘us’ strong women are not okay, when we feel overwhelmed with life’s burdens, along with grief that has taken a toll on us!

I am so grateful for my close friends, the ones that have stuck with me through some of the most difficult seasons of my life.

We connect on a whole different level, our passions, our anxieties, our failures and our joys. Let me say these kind of friends are rare, that inner circle you know that helps sustain us, the ones that probably don’t always what to hear us, but speak truth to us in love.

A community of women that value you, that you value and are blessed to have, at your lowest of lows and your highest of highs.

But sometimes there are some deep, deep things inside our souls and heart that only can be heard by Jesus. Sometimes there are burdens to personal to carry except to the foot of the cross, from our lips to God’s ears. There is a place of solitude, of rest, of freedom and healing in his presence alone!

I often think in our busyness of everyday life, of expectations from ourselves as well as others that we cannot always measure up to, there has to be a balance. A balance of what is important and what is not, it’s in the learning of healthy boundaries but also of having a compassion for those who are deeply wounded.

I reflect on the story of Mary & Martha, Martha complained of being so busy and Mary wasn’t helping her. Mary was resting at the feet of Jesus, where we all need to sit, in the stillness of his presence.

In Luke 10:41-42, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.”

The whole idea to be sitting at his feet, was to listen to his word, to rest in his presence, to understand that sitting with him we are brought into the fullness of who he is and who we are in him.

I love my friends, in fact I pray they know I am always here with a box of tissues, a listening ear and definitely a huge hug. But I cannot do what Jesus can, heal their broken hearts and fill them to overflowing with his love and bring them to the wholeness only he can offer.

Heavenly Father, thank you for good friends, for friends that walk with you through difficult seasons in our lives. I’m so grateful that you have blessed me with my precious friends.

But I am even more grateful, when I fall apart, when there is such deep, deep pain within me that I can come to the foot of the cross and be redeemed, restored and filled.

Thank you in conversations of the heart to your ears alone, that you are my greatest comforter and my redeemer.

May I always sit at your feet in awe of your beauty!

Shalom

Food for Thought

Sparkles, Sprinkles, Cupcakes & Grandkids- Oh My

I so enjoy taking my morning walks, however this Saturday morning it was rainy, dull and rather cool outside, so I decided to embark on some more ‘spring cleaning’ (yuk).

My least favorite part of spring cleaning is pulling out the fridge & stove, I’m pretty sure there may be some strange things growing behind that stove!?

As I pulled out my stove, to sweep and clean I found a small amount of dusty fur balls along with some shiny sprinkles and sparkles. I chuckled to myself, as during my grandkids previous visit, we made some cupcakes and they got to put icing on them and use as much sparkles and sprinkles as they wanted! I love spending time with them, they are like a dose of sunshine.

I think being a grandparent is one of the greatest joys we have and I am so blessed to pour so much love into them. Boy oh boy the rewards of hugs and those wonderful words ‘I love you nanny’ drives me over the top’.

My grandson is a big personality, but also sensitive and smart, sometimes I think he is an old soul in a child’s body. My granddaughter, a sweet girlie girl, she loves her bling even at this age and is adorably funny. They make me laugh and I just love their darn right honesty. No filters needed in my house, I am sure even having a big brother she can hold her own, she takes no prisoners, but the love they have for each other is wonderful to watch.

They bring so much joy, to all who love them, their wonder for adventure and nonstop questions, not to mention my grandson loves to hear stories. Lots of stories, about his dad and funny things that happened with his daddy growning up. Oh and he can tell some interesting ones to, not sure his parents would be as amused as this grandma is!

There is something in the pureness of their questions, their wonder and excitement that honestly is amazing. I thought about the love Jesus had for children, and the way he treated them with so much care and value.  Jesus wants each of us to possess a childlike faith, faith that is pure, unassuming, and humble.

The kind of faith that allows us to receive salvation and doesn’t doubt who Jesus says he is. Just like children rely on parents’ for their daily needs, we should humbly depend on our heavenly Father for provision both spiritually and physically.

In Mark 10:15 Jesus says: ‘Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.’

Father let us approach you with childlike faith, not doubting but unassuming and humble, let us be in awe of your love, kindness and goodness for all of us.

Sparkles, sprinkles, cupcakes and grandkids- oh my!

Shalom

Food for Thought-Devotional

The Woman at the Well

John 4: 7-117 When a Samaritan woman came to draw water, Jesus said to her, “Will you give me a drink?” 8 (His disciples had gone into the town to buy food.) 9 The Samaritan woman said to him, “You are a Jew and I am a Samaritan woman. How can you ask me for a drink?” (For Jews do not associate with Samaritans.[1] ) 10 Jesus answered her, “If you knew the gift of God and who it is that asks you for a drink, you would have asked him and he would have given you living water.”

As much as I may not have had five husbands, I certainly could have been this woman at the well, a woman whose own sin had broken her and was so deeply in need of salvation and redemption. There are certainly times that our sufferings are from outside of us, nothing we did to invite such pain either than living in a broken world.

Jesus great love for this world is demonstrated in his interaction with the Samaritan woman at the well. Especially during the custom and times Jesus lived in, Jews didn’t associate with Samaritan’s certainly not a woman that was considered low standing, by her race, culture and marital status. The story also implies that most women came to the well as a group, not just for water but for social interaction, perhaps her coming by herself she may have been considered an outcast?

But then Jesus was rejected by his own people, his love for the outcast, broken and downtrodden was his ministry, he understands all of us. He loves us in our sin and brokenness but does not want to leave us there. We are in need of a savior, just as the woman at the well experienced his love and offer of salvation and redemption.

My well, may look like the foot of my bed, as I have wept in my own brokenness and suffering.  My pain not just because of my own bad choices but also circumstances that happened that broke me and changed my life. Like the woman at the well, I have often felt like an outcast, broken and forgotten, we all do! The good news is Jesus meets us just were we are, in need of salvation and redemption, in need of a savior. He offers us living water, once we have a drink from his well, we will never thirst again.

That doesn’t mean our suffering and pain ends, it means we are redeemed from our sinful nature, healed and set free from our past. The gift of salvation is what He did for all of us, he covered us, and he bore our brokenness and sins and redeemed us. He loves us enough to speak truth to us, just as he did for the woman at the well. He is our living water, our hope and promise of eternity.

Father, may we drink from your well of living water, may we be redeemed and made whole, just as the Samaritan woman was so long ago. May you meet us where we are, whether broken, lost or forgotten, we are all in need of a savior.

Shalom

A Season of His Grace

A Season of His Grace

There is something glorious about the fall season perhaps the crisp fall air, pumpkin spice lattes or the glorious array of colors from falling leaves.  I wait patiently after the darkness of winter for the beauty of spring to immerge, beginnings and endings.

I can’t help think life is similar, endings and beginnings, the birth of a child or the death a loved one.

As I enter into another fall season, I mourn the loss of a precious friend, mentor and my personal cheer leader. Yesterday I attended a fitting tribute to a beautiful woman we celebrated her life, I wept knowing I could no longer meet her for coffee or phone her for advice.

Her life may have ended here but began again in a most amazing place, I can only imagine it is spring there all the time!  As I reflected on the many conversations we have had for over eighteen years, she taught me to live with intention, to know that anything is possible with faith in God. I will miss her crazy laughter and the words spoken out of a heart of love for me, she affirmed me and she challenged me!  I remember a conversation we had shortly before she left us, she said “remember whose you are and how beautiful he created you to be’.  All things are possible, don’t forget His promises, He knows you and he know your needs, trust that.

Death triggers us, it brought back some painful memories of my own loss of being a young widow, and with two small children to raise, I was not prepared to become a widow little alone a single parent. I was their refuge from the fear of losing another parent and reassuring them that everything would be okay. 

As I enter into this season of mourning, I remember God is my refuge and safe place, as I have found my faith again in the most unfair circumstances I could ever have imagined, faith that kept me sane and safe. Death changes us but it has taught me there was a greater purpose, greater then I could have ever thought was possible.

I learned that grief is life long, like waves of a tide it can hit you so suddenly and leave you reeling, it has with me more than once. But I have also learned to ride those waves, and give myself some much needed moments to feel the grief. I will always hold my dear friend and husband close to my heart, I understand there will be times through my life that those memories will be felt deep within my very soul.

Like fall, I didn’t see that a new life had been planted underneath, waiting for the birth once again of spring and of new beginnings.  Beautiful blossoms, gorgeous sunrises and sunsets or of better days and healed hearts yet to come.

I learned through this journey, the power of God’s redemption that God alone heals and restores the most broken hearts and lives. I have travelled roads of darkness and despair, my messy and broken life has had many twists and turns. Storms that I hadn’t chosen and seasons I would have loved to skip over. I would rather had spring when at times it felt like the darkness of coldness of winter, I wanted to dance and re-choice anything rather than death. I have learned regardless whatever season we are in there we cannot rush into the next one, grief and sorrow are part of the process of healing and redemption.

I may never hear my husband’s voice again or hear him say that everything will be okay, at least not on this side of eternity. But I take courage in my journey knowing fully and confidently that my God of refuge holds me in the palm of his mighty hand.

My faith has grown and it has taught me, that regardless of how much I may not have wanted to walk through the dark valleys of despair, I have experienced my greatest growth in knowing that God will never leave me.

Weddings, anniversaries and birthdays, celebrations often move me to tears, ironically I also treasure the beautiful memories of a life now remembered in my heart and soul.

With each season now, I experience joy, savoring each moment knowing that another season is just around the corner.

Death changes us it expands us to become so much more compassionate for others that are grieving, or it can shrink our souls leaving us full of bitterness and anger. I never thought in those moments that seemed endless falls and winters, God was preparing me for another spring.

Ecclesiastes 3: 4 ‘A time to weep, and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance.’ Shalom

Food for Thought-Devotional

Author-Jan Stefanic

Come Sit at My Table

I had my son and my grandkids over for dinner tonight, we celebrated my son’s birthday, we looked at each other and said in unison, “where has the time gone!”

 My grandkids are 6 & 8 years old, almost the same age as my son and daughter were when their dad died suddenly. It is moments like these, that grief can hit me, like a wave, even after all these years, grief never really disappears.

In these moments of remembering, the many holidays, birthdays, my daughter’s wedding, the birth of our grandchildren, anniversaries, is when his absence is so missed! He never got to meet his grandkids, he never got to see his own children grow up, life can seem so terribly unfair and heartbreaking at time.

We have learned to live without them but that doesn’t mean we don’t miss them. My grandson said tonight, I wish all our families could one day sit together and have a big dinner and celebration, I wish my grandpa could be with us to celebrate!

I could start to feel my eyes swell with tears, in my grandson’s innocent statement, he may not have fully understand the truth of what he said. There will be a day we will all get to celebrate together again.

As I listened to my sweet little grandson speak, thoughts danced through my head ‘oh how there will be a day that we get to dine at His table”. What a glorious day that will be, for all of us who wait and all of those that have gone before us to sit with our heavenly Father and celebrate, our home coming.

Even now in craziness of this world, and our busy lives, is he asking us to come and dine at his table?

Have we become so disconnected with Him and each other, that there are times we do not even recognize that He just wants for us to sit in his presence, is he asking right now for our time, to come dine with him?

In the book of John, John 14:3 Jesus stated; and if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.

He is preparing a place for us, a place of peace, without pain, without any more sufferings, a place beyond our imagination.  What glorious joy that will be when and celebration when we finally dine with our Father.

With the sheer innocence of my grandson’s statement, what a heavenly reminder how, one day we will sit with our Father and dine at His table!

Dear Lord: Thank you for a gentle reminder from an innocence child’s thoughts of celebrating, that we will celebrate with you one day. Until then may we, sit in awe and wonder of your presence, waiting expectantly for your return!

Shalom

Food for Thought

Transformed

Colossians 3:10 And have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its creator’.

I recently celebrated another birthday, yup January baby, I treasure the fact I’m celebrating another year. I love cards, especially cards of affirmation, I love receiving and I love giving cards to encourage others. Especially those treasured handmade cards from my young grandkids, just love when those creative juices flow.

My grandson drew a rather interesting picture of me, looks nothing like me but definitely fulfills the ‘grandmotherly look’ (lol). I got to say, that little guy knows how to draw and is quite the talent for his young age. His younger sister and my granddaughter made me a card with butterflies on it, butterflies with brilliant colors, flowers, and both her and I holding hands. Got to love my big red hair and red lips, oh my how I treasure those two little cherubs.

But as I chuckled to myself, I thought well I have been morphed!! Morphed from a cocoon to a beautiful, brilliant butterfly, the irony in that is an understatement. As I recently had a conversation with a friend about our transformation as Christians, morphed into the beauty of our creator.

I kind of feel like I have been in a cocoon for the last two years or more, maybe as ironic the hand crafted card is I sensed a transformation from what was to what is and will be?

A simple transformation, of God’s redemptive truth, and gospel message. Far removed from some of the sugar coated, name and claim it, faith in faith and prosperity teachings I have been subjected to over the years. Teachings that may make you feel good, but certainly give no long terms benefits. Rather that of the pure teachings of transformation of our thinking and benefits of living out his truth.

God’s word, does redeem and restore our thinking, it renews the joy of our spirit, and strengths us both mentally and spiritually. Life is tough and life can be hard, how disappointing when we realized that God is not some cosmic genie in the sky there to grant us our every wish?

What his word does and is created to do, is transform us in the likeness of his son. To understand this life here is not forever, but there will come a time of great joy that we truly can only imagine.

His word has taught me in the most broken moments of my life, that there is a hope so much greater to hang onto. There is a strength in me, that doesn’t come from the broken human that I am, and there is a peace through those darkest moments that comes from no other than Him!

Day by day, a renewing, from the old way of thinking to the understanding of who we are and why we have been created. To live a life of abundance, peace of a renewed spirit, and of endless possibilities. Knowing our sufferings are never in vain, and our time here is never wasted, we must trust the process, because nothing will or has happened over night.

Looking back I am glad every answer wasn’t a ‘yes’ to my prayers, because unlike our finite thinking, God already new the outcome. I gladly return, to simplicity, of the gospel, and wait expectantly as I am transformed daily. I choose to sit and read his message to a world that is in so need of a savior, is in need of transformation. As I trust the process of being transformed into His likeness.

Dear Heavenly Father: Thank you for your redemptive word, and unfathomable patience with us, as day by day you renew us and slowly create us into the very image of your son! May we faithfully cling to your truths, as we gradually reflect the image of our Lord and savior Jesus.

Shalom

Food for Thought

Genuine Hope

Author

My early mornings, are spent in meditation and devotion, I need that time to energize myself and prepare for the day that lies ahead of me. I usually start off with worship music and a daily devotion, including reading God’s word!

This morning I listened to a song called the Goodness of God, love the lyrics and the powerful voice of one of my favorite singers. As I started reading my devotion for the day, the reading stated “that optimism is not based on the circumstances of the moment, but hope that is rooted in God’s faithfulness-regardless of our situation or circumstances.

God never changes, his “goodness” remains regardless of what we are currently living through, personally or a part of the world around us. I cannot tell you how many “social media” platforms I have unsubscribed from lately. It gets mind boggling, with the amount of differences people have and state, but not necessarily in a respectful way. If I had to let others sometimes hateful opinions get any kind of grip on my mind, I would become overwhelmed. I choose to lean into hope and peace, so needed, but sometimes may seem unattainable. God’s hope brings such internal peace and comfort. There are days, I struggle with sustaining living in hope, to sliding back into that slippery slope of living in my circumstances without seeing hope within them. I have to quiet myself and find that place once again of not living by what I see, but understanding the goodness of God and the hope he brings has not changed. When I come to rest in the knowledge, that this life here is for a mere moment compared to what lies ahead of me. I settle back into trust, and the sheer comfort of His presence, and the truth that “that optimism is not based on the circumstances of the moment, but hope that is rooted in God’s faithfulness-regardless of our situation or circumstances”.

I would much rather spend my time reading something that is fulfilling and brings me to a place of peace. I’m not one that won’t stand up for truth and righteousness, I just choose to pick my battles wisely! I would rather bring a good message, to people that are hurting and feeling overwhelmed. And let them hear a word that is life sustaining regardless of our present circumstances. I just need to give myself that reminder!

1 Peter 1:3-9 NIV

Praise to God for a Living Hope

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade. This inheritance is kept in heaven for you, who through faith are shielded by God’s power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time. In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed. Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, for you are receiving the end result of your faith, the salvation of your souls.

Heavenly Father: May we continue to remind ourselves that your hope is always available and that regardless what our circumstances may look like, our hope is rooted in you alone!

Shalom

Food for Thought

Prince of Peace

Isaiah 9:6 NIV

Photo by Burkay Canatar on Pexels.com

For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders and he will be called.  Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”

God’s peace is more than just the absence of conflict or state of rest. It means completeness or wholeness and it points to the presence of something else. His presence is peace, internal and eternal, perhaps the something else, is his holy spirit within us.

All of us seek peace, we pray for peace, we long for peace, especially in such turbulent times as we are living in right now.  But the peace we strive for and search for is already within us, he cannot fail us, his promises remain, and no matter what it may look like He is in control.

I know that there are times, I feel overwhelmed by all I see and hear around me. Media, constantly bombarding us with information, chaos, fear, death, and job loss, such negative and harshness like I have never heard or seen before.

I have to shut it all down, and sit in His peace and take rest. As I know that I’m not in control but trust the same God that holds my salvation in his hands also holds my life. His peace is like no other, nothing can match it, as it dwells in the very depth of our spirit and soul.

As the season of celebration of the birth of our savior approaches, I pray his presence and peace overflow within you. May he sustain, you as you find rest in his presence, away from the noise and troubles of this world!

Father, you are our everlasting father, wonderful counselor, our mighty God and our prince of peace. As we celebrate the birth of our Lord and savior Jesus Christ, may we rest in your presence, for the peace we seek comes only from you!

Shalom

Food for Thought

He Calls Me His Beloved

Zephaniah 3:17 “The Lord your God is with you, a Powerful One Who wins the battle. He will have much joy over you. With His love He will give you new life. He will have joy over you with loud singing.”

The word ‘beloved’ means to be greatly loved, I don’t believe there is anything greater than the love God has for us. God is love, Jesus was God’s greatest expression of that love for all of us.

God is our true assurance, that regardless of the many fiery trials we go through that He will not forsake us, and his promises remain and He loves us unconditionally.

I love reading His word and promises but I am in awe of the fact that he pursues us and he sings over us, he longs for us to see His beauty. Too gaze upon His countenance, to seek him for nothing else either than his presence.

 When our world, seems to be covered in nothing but darkness, I choose to remember his grace and mercy for me. I look around and see the many beautiful sunsets and sunrises; there are days I remember my childhood visits,to our beautiful eastern coast line. To hear the roar of the ocean or play on a sandy beach, to pick up clams for our clam bake, or to spend time with family & friends. To the far west, and see the sunrise or sunset over the rocky mountains, walk in the coldness of winter, to make snow angels with my grandchildren, it takes my breath away. His presence is everywhere as is his love, there is no mistaking it even in the little things, my grandchildren’s laughter, a friends prayers, to the worship in the songs we sing to a faithful God.

There are days of great sorrows, days that seem the darkness has overcome us, but that is not even a possibility because he is in all of it. He is light, when I am on my knees in prayer crying out to him, I hear his voice whisper, that I am loved, I am his!

I often think of a great artist painting, when I see the amazing beauty of the northern lights or the colors in a rainbow. The smell of cherry blossoms in the spring to the glorious colors that fall brings. He is everywhere, he is in all that is righteous, in each breath we take and each tear we cry.  We are his, he calls us his beloved, seek his presence and gaze upon his beauty. For you are his beloved!

Dear Father: Let us remember when darkness seems to overcome us, that the light of your presence and beauty is everywhere. In each spectacular sunset and sunrise, in each face and person you have created. You hung the stars and moon, to the roar of the oceans, and the beauty of your majestic mountains.

Forgive us for our blindness of your presence, I pray that we hear you in the whispers in the wind that say we are your beloved!

Shalom

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