Monday, February 21, 2005

Come Ye Apart

The following hymn was found in Sankey’s “Sacred Songs & Solos”,
a book of 1,200 hymns which I peruse every morning as part of my
devotional time. The composer of this particular hymn was not listed.
O how much I need to heed the lyrics of this moving piece of music!
May we all learn the secret of Coming Apart.

Come Ye Apart and Rest Awhile

Come ye yourselves apart and rest awhile,
Weary, I know it, of the press and throng;
Wipe from your brow the sweat and dust of toil,
And in My quiet strength again be strong.

Come ye aside from all the world holds dear,
For converse which the world has never known;
Alone with Me and with My Father here,
With Me and with My Father not alone.

Come tell me all that ye have said and done,
Your victories and failures, hopes and fears;
I know how hardly souls are wooed and won,
My choicest wreathes are always wet with tears.

Come ye and rest, the journey is too great,
And ye will faint beside the way and sink;
The bread of life is here for you to eat,
And here for you the wine of love to drink.

Then, fresh from converse with your Lord, return,
And work till daylight softens into even;
The brief hours are not lost in which ye learn
More of your Master and His rest in heaven.

"Eternal God, teach us to leave the cares of life aside,
and in your loving arms, rest and abide. AMEN!"

Wednesday, February 16, 2005

Kids & Chickens

This has been one of those days when I've wanted to get out our old plaque that reads . . .



Do you ever feel that way? Bet you don't but I have my days!

Sunday, February 13, 2005

Leaving a Mark

Today, while driving home from church, I noticed a sky filled with vapor trails from high-flying jets. The bright, clear sky made these very noticeable. These contrails, as they are called, appear for awhile and then slowly fade and become invisible. Just like the mark some people's lives leave on this earth. How about you? What about me? Am I making a mark that will outlive me? Am I leaving a legacy for those who come behind? Or will my life leave behind nothing but a quickly fading cloud of smoke? As the old adage says, "Only one life 'twill soon be past. Only what's done for Christ will last." Let's make a difference for God and for eternity!

Leaving a Mark

Wednesday, February 09, 2005

Quotes from M'Cheyne

Robert Murray M‘Cheyne (1813-1843), the godly and devoted minister of St Peter’s Church, Dundee, Scotland was called "home" at age 29. Andrew Bonar wrote an excellent biography of this Scottish preacher that has enabled M'Cheyne's work to live on. Here are some powerful quotes from M'Cheyne's ministry:

"A man is what he is on his knees before God, and nothing more."

"For every look at self, take ten looks at Christ."

"Live near to God, and all things will appear little to you in comparison with eternal realities."

"Lord make me as holy as a pardoned sinner can be."

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

Looking for Peace?

This article was written by my good friend, E. Natalie Johnson. This and other excellent entries appear on her site. Check it out at:

Where Is Peace?
2005. E. Natalie Johnson

P eace is found when I place
E very worry
A nd fear into
C hrist's
E verlasting arms and let Him carry them instead.

Blue Light At Dusk. January 2005. photo by E. Natalie Johnson.

I don't fully understand why presenting concerns to God in this way brings peace. I just know that when I give my burdens to Him, I experience His peace which transcends all human understanding.

"It's wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life.", says Peterson in The Message (Philippians 4).

When I was going through the tumultuous teen years, I referred again and again to a little quote written inside the cover of my bible..."When Christ is at the center of my life, the circumference will take care of itself". Jesus put it another way..."seek first His Kingdom and His Righteousness, and all the things we need to live will be added to our life as well." (Matthew 6)

Like the Psalmist we can know that even when we're surrounded by trouble, God is walking through it with us. Reach out and take hold of the Heavenly Father's outstretched hand and be filled with His peace.

Like Joshua of old, we can be strong and courageous knowing that the same Almighty God will be with us, will not fail us, and will not forsake us.

Where is peace? Peace is in the very character of God revealed to us by His Spirit. It is produced in our life when we abide in Christ. It is tapping into His strength. I am like a branch connected to a life-giving vine ~ a branch dripping with fruit. The fruit of peace. Apart from abiding in Christ, disconnected from the True Vine, there is no peace. No matter how I try to 'grow it' on my own.

Hannah Whitall Smith once wrote, "It is not a question of acquaintance with ourselves, or of knowing what we are, or what we do, or what we feel; it is simply and only a question of becoming acquainted with God, and getting to know what He is, and what He does, and what He feels. Comfort and peace can never come from anything we know about ourselves, but only and always from what we know about Him."(Hannah Whitall Smith, The God of All Comfort.)

God is the source of real peace. There's no where else to look.

Thursday, February 03, 2005

He Whispers "Peace"

I needed to hear these words this morning! In the midst of your fearful situation, hear the voice of your Father whispering, "Do NOT fear, for I am your God."

Do NOT Fear, I Am Your God

Tuesday, February 01, 2005

Driveway Full of Trucks...Sky Full of Stars

This afternoon, after a full day of learning (a Non-Violent Crisis Intervention course), I returned home to a driveway filled with three furnace repair trucks and the fire chief's emergency vehicle. My immediate reaction was, 'now what?'. One of the repairmen greeted me with the news that our furnace (which we have been having trouble with lately) was, in fact, shot. Finished! Done! And it's only nine years old!

Going to the basement of our home I found two other repairmen, the fire chief and his deputy discussing the situation. My mind flashed back to the fire we had 10 years ago just after moving to our home. Certainly not fond memories! So, we're without a furnace for a few days until we decide what route to take. And it's cold here in our part of the world! Oil again, propane or natural gas? I hate making decisions! Will I make the right one? Just another frustration on top of the other things we're already dealing with.

The Signature of Our Mighty Creator

As I left the house tonight to pick up an electric heater in town, I looked heavenward to a dark sky strewn with glittering stars. My immediate reaction was, 'God is still on His throne, the stars that He hung in space are out tonight, and everything is alright in God's heaven!'. He knows all about our furnace (and everything else) and He will provide strength during this trial. God speaks loud and clear in the midst of our struggles.

I'm back home now with a fire blazing in the wood stove, extra blankets on the kids' beds and the ominous thought that tomorrow I have an important decision to make.

How do people without a relationship with a loving, caring God ever get through these uncertain times? I just don't know! But I do know that the God who created me, loves me and will somehow meet every need. He has never failed and this will NOT be the first time! He never will!

The heavens are filled with declarations of the Father's love tonight and I can trust Him with every need and every decision.

How about you?