Archive for category Love

MY HEART HURTS

531554_10151293191886736_262611408_n“Hear my cry, O God; attend unto my prayer. From the end of the earth will I cry unto thee, when my heart is overwhelmed: lead me to the rock that is higher than I. Psalm 61:2 KJV

An indescribable pain overwhelms this mother’s heart and I have nowhere to put it, but in this post. It hurts so deeply there is no depth. There is no bottom to this pit of pain. I am screaming volumes, but no one can hear the echoing silence.

On March 2, 2014, my precious son, my man-child, my gift from God at 40 years of age, was torn from my breast!!!  INSTANTLY KILLED IN A MOTORCYCLE ACCIDENT—in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye!!  KENNY 001

Officiating over 200 funerals–decades of ministry could not prepare my heart for this hurt beyond aching. Words do not come to describe this soul-wrenching pain that bursts from the seams of my love for this child—this beloved flesh of my flesh.

I will not—I cannot hold back – the agony is too great. My heart hurts and hurts and hurts–Day in and day out– Nights bring no relief.  I cannot will these tears to stop.  Lord, please help me!  

Grace gave us three glorious last days and promised to be sufficient for my tomorrows, but TODAY, I am sadder than sad—broken beyond broken—shattered with no strength to be strong!! TODAY THIS MOTHER’S HEART HURTS!!!

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Love Without Limits

“But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”  (NIV)

44286_10151221778861736_809587444_nWhenever I feel unloved, I go to Calvary.  Whenever I feel pressured by the world, I remember Calvary.  Whenever I feel lost, lonely or alone, I go to Calvary–the place where human suffering is laid out in full view.  I go to that place where our sinless Lord is dying– not for sins He committed, but for our sins–yours and mine.  And I marvel at the way God chose to write an unforgettable message of unconditional love, especially when we were so undeserving and so unworthy. It’s amazing, but you have to see the suffering to see the love.  And you will miss the depth of the love if you do not understand the degree of the sufferingWhat an extraordinary picture God paints of unconditional love!

But if the truth be told, I believe most of us would settle for love in any condition, but it is unconditional love that we crave.  You know: love without restrictions;love without prerequisites or requirements; love without qualification or reservation, love without hidden clauses or small print; that never keeps a scorecard of rights and wrongs; that never says, if you love me you would do this; or you don’t love me because you didn’t do that. It’s love that has no limits; that sets no boundaries; that draws no lines; that is always open.  It’s the kind of love we get –not because we are lovable but because we are beloved. You see, real, authentic love finds it own wayacts on its own initiative. It’s the 1 Corinthians Chapter 13 kind of love.  It’s Jonas Beiler’s “No Pre-nup–No Post-nup” kind of loveThat’s the kind of love we want most!

It’s the kind of love, that loves us not just when we are dressed up in all our “stuff” — but also loves when we are dressed down and stripped of all pretense.  The kind of love that loves when we 375810_10151336834711736_970521421_nare wrestling in the dark corners of our lives.  That loves when we are wallowing in our muck, mire, and misery. That loves when we are acting the fool and should know better. That loves whether we are wrong or right.   That cherishes us when we get lost and can’t find our way.  That loves when we try and fail in our trying, that keeps on loving when we get old, gray, and wrinkled; that loves us even without makeup; that doesn’t stop loving because our breath is unpleasant; our noses are drippy or our hair is a mess; that adores us even when our heads are bald; our bellies hang over our belts and all of our teeth are gone.  I’m talking about THE GREATEST LOVE OF ALL– THE LOVE OF GOD THAT (ON CALVARY) LOVED US WITH AN EVERLASTING LOVE — IN SPITE OF WHO AND WHAT WE WERE THAT SAW US AT OUR WORST AND STILL GAVE THE VERY BEST.  WITHOUT A DOUBT, THAT’S  (MATCHLESS), UNCONDITIONAL LOVE WITHOUT LIMITS!!!!

The songwriter said it best:  “I could not imagine what loving me would cost until Jesus went to Calvary and loved me with a Cross.” May you rejoice always in these words found in Romans 8:38-39 (RSV) “For I am sure that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Be Blessed and Happy Valentines Day to ALL.

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First Love

First Love“But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first.” Rev. 2:4 (RSV)

I feel nostalgic on holidays, birthdays, rainy days, and yes, even Mondays. My mind retreats to bygone days and simpler times. I especially remember the “firsts” in my life. There is something remarkable about “firsts.” I believe they are precious and Divinely inspired. “Firsts” happen only once and are irreplaceable.

I particularly remember my first love. I was 10.  My heart pounded when I thought of him.  I couldn’t wait to see him—hear his voice.  We’d talk for hours about nothing in particular.  I loved this feeling and I wanted it to last forever.

There’s something remarkable about first love–it is not sexual or sensual—it is sacred and pristine. It is like what the old Ivory Soap slogan promises, “99/100 percent pure.”  There is an innocence about it that makes it beautiful.  In first love, we give our hearts totally, trust completely, and hope fully.  There is no second-guessing—we simply love and are grateful for love in return.

But somehow, we get caught up in the external trappings of life and love is lost—leaving us with a huge void in our hearts that causes us to wonder what went wrong with what we thought was perfect and real, and we spend our days trying to rekindle the feeling of first love.

First Love

The Church at Ephesus was enthusiastic in the beginning.  Their hallmark had been their love for Christ and for one another.  They loved to worship, they loved to fellowship, they loved teaching and being taught.  Then their love waned, the thrill of service diminished, and they abandoned their first love.

As Christians, we can never forget our first love and the way we loved at first. We must always remember when we first saw the light; recall when we first believed; and, that the heart of the God that loved us first — anxiously awaits to take us back!!

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Favor

“For thy Maker is thine husband; the Lord of hosts is his name. . . .” Isaiah 54:5 (KJV)

To favor means to show special regard or exceptional kindness to someone. It means to give preferential treatment in comparison to others and that the one “favored” receives generosity and goodwill far beyond what is normally expected. This is generally the favor that we receive from the Lord. One night, following an unusually challenging week, just before my evening prayers, to quote the old saints,”I looked at my hands and my hands looked new.” There it was–a startling sign of God’s Divine favor towards me!! On my third finger, left hand, was an unmistakable ring of color.  Amazed, I thoroughly explored it, questioned its meaning, and tried to understand why I never noticed it until that moment. Then these words of Scripture echoed in my spirit: “You have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you . . . .” (John 15:16). Suddenly, I understood what it truly meant to be “known (by God) from my mother’s womb.” I always knew my life was not my own.  My heart raced and rejoiced to think that I would be so highly regarded with such a miraculous gift for all the world to see. Excitedly, I spent the rest of the night studying the meaning of the “wedding ring.” Needless to say, no wedding I ever officiated–not even my own wedding vows, prepared me to fully grasp the meaning of this miracle!! What a Blessing to be entrusted with such an incredible sign of personal covenant with God!!

As I continued to look at my indelible gift and to study the history of the ring and the “wedding ceremony,” I was even more amazed. The ring symbolizes love and love, according to I Corinthians 13, is the most worthy of all emotions. The wedding ring, in particular, is an instantly recognizable symbol of the joining of two in marriage. It is an endless unbroken circle of eternal love that continues its endless flow through time. It has no beginning and no end and returns to itself, like life. The roundness of the ring represents “eternity” symbolizing a union that is to last forever. The hole in the center is not just a space — it symbolizes the gateway or door that leads to things and events both known and unknown. Those in Antiquity, believed that a vein, or nerve, ran directly from the “ring finger” of the left hand to the heart, (the latin, vena amoris “the vein of love”). In the marriage ritual, the “engagement ring” is removed and replaced by the wedding band (symbolically meaning the wedding band is being placed closest to the heart). Finally, the wedding band signifies the last gift to the “other” sealing the union’s “undying” love.

I cannot truly say, I understand everything that has happened to me these past few years; I agree with Job, “it is simply too wonderful for me.” I admit, I never fully grasped “the why of” this skin disorder — this “thorn in my flesh,” until my ring of color reminded me that “God’s ways are not our ways” and God uses “simple things to confound the wise.” I feel honored and am sincerely grateful to think the Savior of the world would Bless lowly me in such a way! What reassurance of God’s constant presence and steadfast love. What a phenomenal way to show to the world that this broken, earthen vessel, is not only Blessed and Beloved, but Highly Favored!

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Unconditional Love

“But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”  (NIV)

Whenever I feel unloved, I go to Calvary.  Whenever I feel pressured by the world, I remember Calvary.  Whenever I feel lost, lonely or alone, I go to Calvary–the place where human suffering is laid out in full view.  I go to that place where our sinless Lord is dying– not for sins He committed, but for our sins–yours and mine.  And I marvel at the way God chose to write an unforgettable message of unconditional love, especially when we were so undeserving and so unworthy. I am amazed, but you have to see the suffering in order to see the love.  And you will miss the depth of the love if you do not understand the degree of the sufferingWhat an extraordinary picture God paints of unconditional love!

But if the truth be told, I believe most of us would settle for love in any condition, but it is unconditional love that we crave.  You know: love without restrictions;love without prerequisites or requirements; love without qualification or reservation, love without hidden clauses or small print; that never keeps a scorecard of rights and wrongs; that never says, if you love me you would do this; or you don’t love me because you didn’t do that. It’s love that has no limits; that sets no boundaries; that draws no lines; that is always open.  It’s the kind of love we get –not because we are lovable but because we are beloved. You see, real, authentic love finds it own wayacts on its own initiative. It’s the 1 Corinthians Chapter 13′ kind of love.  It’s a man named, Jonas Beiler’s “No Pre-nup–No Post-nup” love.  That’s the kind of love we want most!

It’s the kind of love, that loves us not just when we are dressed up in all our “stuff” — but also loves when we are dressed down and stripped of all pretense.  The kind of love that loves when we are wrestling in the dark corners of our lives.  That loves when we are wallowing in our muck, mire, and misery. That loves when we are acting the fool and should know better. That loves whether we are wrong or right.   That cherishes us when we get lost and can’t find our way.  That loves when we try and fail in our trying, that keeps on loving when we get old, gray, and wrinkled; that loves us even without makeup; that doesn’t stop loving because our breath is unpleasant; our noses are drippy or our hair is a mess; that adores us even when our heads are bald; our bellies hang over our belts and all of our teeth are gone.  I’m talking about THE GREATEST LOVE OF ALL– THE LOVE OF GOD THAT (ON CALVARY) LOVED US WITH AN EVERLASTING LOVE — IN SPITE OF WHO AND WHAT WE WERE THAT SAW US AT OUR WORST AND STILL GAVE THE VERY BEST.  WITHOUT A DOUBT, THAT’S  (MATCHLESS), UNCONDITIONAL LOVE!!!!

The songwriter said it best:  “I could not imagine what loving me would cost until Jesus went to Calvary and loved me with a Cross.” May you rejoice always in these words found in Romans 8:38-39 (RSV) “For I am sure that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Be Blessed and Happy Valentines Day to ALL.

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