Monday, September 28, 2015

The Effervescence of Creation

Genesis 1:4

God saw that the light was good and he separated the light from the darkness.
Seven times the words, “God saw that it was good.” are repeated in Genesis, chapter 1.

The word, “saw”, in Hebrew means many things in many different situations.  In Strong’s Concordance, they are given in alphabetical order.  These are the ones most people think of when reading these verses;  He approved; He beheld; He considered. 

But there are others, that when I look at them fill me with a new assurance of understanding; like “make to enjoy”, to “have experience”, to “joyfully look”, “be near”, to “stare” and “visions”.
The story of creation is the story of how excited God gets when He makes something new.  He gazes at it, He enjoys it.  He looks joyfully at it.  He stares at it.”
He made this thing called Earth and he was delighted with what He’d done!  Any creative person know that feeling when something we’ve made comes out just as we “envisioned” it.  It’s that feeling join our core that is warm and delightful and when flows outward from our center to our skin it becomes effervescent and the roots of our hair tingle.  It’s like, if we don’t do something physical right away, that effervescence will burst out of us and just make a terrible mess!
I think that’s what our Father felt when He was creating the earth.  Each new thing He made filled Him with bubbling joy.  He stared at it, thinking how wonderful it was!

Paul says in 2 Corinthians 5:17, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!”

Every time someone chooses to believe in the salvation offered through Christ, the Father makes them a new creation!  That same bubbling joy comes from His core and fills heaven with His delighted laughter!

 Isn’t it amazing to think of how much hilarious joy we bring God when we say yes to his perfect plan?

                For each and every one of us it’s His first day of creation all over again!

                                             It makes me tingle just thinking about it!

Monday, September 14, 2015

Nigeria Journal, part 8

Monday, November 4, 2013
   I got up this morning feeling good but it didn’t last long.  
   I wore my beige skirt with red and green, a beige T shirt and a red bandana.  By the time we got to the church I was feeling bloated and a little stomach crampy.  
  This was the first day of the Recovery Workshops.  Bill Macinski, Susie Rapp, and Rod all got up and talked about recovery from their own personal points of view.

Bill Muciunski

Susan Rapp

Rod Conover

   Somewhere in that time I began to have diarrhea.  I felt terrible that I clogged the toilet but I was too embarrassed to say anything.  I lay down for a while in the office and rested, hoping I would gain strength and that I would begin to feel better.
   After Rod was done speaking everyone there split up into 3 groups.  There were pastors from other churches as well as people who need to be in recovery.  I was in a group with Rod and Bob.  I couldn’t really pay attention because I really wasn’t feeling well and I kept falling asleep.  Finally I got up and moved to a chair in the middle of the room, away from all the groups and slept for about 15 minutes.  I felt a little better when I woke up and was going to rejoin my group but the Lord told me to stay put and pray for each group so I did.
Recovery small group during
the training workshop
Recovery small group during
the training workshop


  When the workshop was over each person was given a hot lunch of rice and plantains.  I didn’t have any but was so grateful to God for the Coke, in a glass bottle that was handed to me!  I tried to get the bottle cap off but it wouldn’t unscrew.  Paul,  the young man sitting next to me took it and pried the lid off with his teeth!  I said, “Oh!  Don’t do that!”  But it was too late.  Grinning, he handed me back the bottle and the cap, which was now crimped in the center with his lovely teeth marks.  I put it in my fanny pack and told him I would keep it to remember him by.   He asked me what I would give him to remember me by.  I gave him the bag of trail mix I had.  I wished it hadn’t been opened yet, but he didn’t seem to mind.

Just then the team was called to the “Upper Room” for a lunch all our own.  Thankfully I can’t remember what it was. I’m sure I didn’t eat much of it.  But the air conditioning was  wonderful!  And we were waited on by Lozie and Elizabeth, a lady from the church who is a nurse.

The "Upper Room"
that was built especially built for our comfort.
It was air conditioned!

After lunch we were driven back to the hotel through a heavy downpour.  We tried to stop for gas but too many people were crowded up under the gas pump canopy and they just wouldn’t budge!  By the time we got to the hotel the rain had stopped.  We were to find that most days have at least one downpour, this being the rainy season.  

The first of our daily downpours.

No gas for you!  No one will move out from under the canopy!

It was mid afternoon and the SUVs would be back around 5:00 to take us back for the evening meeting.  I was really looking forward to a rest, maybe even a nap in the couple of hours we had but Susie came knocking.  She was in a hotel room by herself.  She wanted to talk about what happened that morning.  She was so excited!  Then, right after Susie left there was a knock on the door and, to Penny’s surprise, in walked a lovely black man, Pastor Dan.  They had been at the same Bible school in Benin City 20 years ago!  So I sat up on the edge of the bed where he sat also and we talked while Penny carried on a lengthy phone call ti Deacon Osiobe.  Dan is incredibly nice and we talked about him and Penny all those years ago, and about his wife, who is from the Hausa tribe (mostly muslim) but she was raised a Christian.  By the time the visit was over it was time to get back in the cars and go back to the church.  I admit that  I was resentful, losing my resttime, feeling like I had to entertain Pastor Dan while Penny was on the phone, but I repented, figuring that God had his hand in it and would keep me safe, no matter how tired I became.
Keigi, a local pastor who runs an
inpatient rehab facility 
a couple of local pastors

Flores, a member of Rescue Mission Church, with Penny and
several participants.

Some people there for healing

Friday, September 11, 2015

Sweet and Sour

Revelation 10:10,11

I took the little scroll from the angel’s hand and ate it.  It tasted as sweet as honey in my mouth, but when I had eaten it, my stomach turned sour.  Then I was told, “You must prophesy again but about many peoples, nations, languages and kings.”

♱   ♱   ♱   ♱   ♱   ♱   ♱   ♱   ♱   ♱   ♱   ♱   ♱   ♱   ♱   ♱

There is an incredible sweetness and a rush that comes from knowing that God is talking to me, just to me, that he is trusting me with important things that need to be spoken and accomplished.  Nothing, so far, takes me higher than hearing him speak to me and to know that he trusts me to understand and act.  He trusts me!  He trusts me?

He is not a human, that he would be disappointed in me if I fail.  If the Master of the Universe gives me a specific task, and thereby makes it known that he trusts me, I cannot fail!  It means he has picked out specific tasks directly related to who I am and how I function best.  I may not recognize it, but he obviously does.

So, the fear of the unknown is vanquished!  

But the sour stomach?  

People won’t believe.  They’ll turn their backs and walk away.  What God reveals through his prophet will be misrepresented, written down and used to deceive.  Wars will be fought in God’s name because people will pick it apart and use only what they want.  Innocents will die and evil men will flourish.

I would think that would turn anyone’s stomach.  Poor John!  From such highs to such lows!