Sunday, November 23, 2008

The Frontier

My parents live in a little tiny town in rural Oklahoma. This is the town where my Daddy grew up. He is the third generation to live in Walters. I think that we are related to at least a third of the town in some way, shape or form. Even though I never lived here, it feels like home. Everyone seems to know who I am and they always greet me like that long lost family member who finally made it home. They are wonderful selfless people and I am proud to be a part of their history and family.

Another thing I enjoy about the frontier is the beauty of the place. Its beauty attacks all your senses. From vivid green wheat fields in the winter to the beautiful old farm houses of families long ago, I just want to stop and memorize the landscape of this stunning and untouched world. I did not know or appreciate silence until I quieted myself here. Its deafening silence is intoxicating. I can hear God breathing in the silence. The smell of fresh air is one of the experiences I most enjoy. The natural clarity of the air almost smells sweet. My body enjoys every purifying breath. I did not understand the beauty of a sunset until I saw one here. Every shade of yellow, orange, red, and purple dance across the sky while the sun slowly submerges below the horizon. At night, the darkness is remarkable. The darkness illuminates every single breathtaking star in the heavens. Every time I am here, I am always astonished by the beauty of this place.

Experiencing this raw creation is such a grounding event for me. As someone who lives in suburbia, I am constantly surrounded by what man has created-it's inescapable. It is an awesome feeling to be surrounded by what God has created. The vastness of His creation makes me feel small and insignificant but loved all at the same time. That feeling is something I crave; something I need. Whether it be the connection of three generations of family or an faint instinct from mother nature, I know God wants me to meet him in this place. To love him in this place. To know him in this place.

Friday, November 14, 2008

The Season of Cancer

Cancer seems to be every where. Yesterday, a mother of two, wife and model christian was welcomed into God's kingdom. She lost her battle with cancer. I found out today that my estranged Aunt recently died of cancer and we missed the funeral. My friend's husband has cancer. My husband's aunt is in remission (praise God). One of my former students, 12 years young, died at the beginning of this year from cancer. I am not sure why this happening around me. Why is all this cancer at my door step? I am almost afraid of any answer that God will provide. I don't even want to ask the question in prayer. I do know that all of this is in his plan and we are not in control. We must trust in him. He knows the story of every life from birth to death. This devotional was shared with our staff at MDO today. I thought it was very fitting given all the recent events in my life. I am reminded not to fear the future but be thankful for what God has given me and what he has in store for me.

Welcome Home
by Max Lucado

Homesickness is one of the burdens God doesn’t mind if we carry. God has “set eternity in the hearts of men” (Eccles. 3:11 NIV). Down deep you know you are not home yet.
This is not our forever house. It will serve for the time being. But there is nothing like the moment we enter his door.
Those you love will shout. Those you know will applaud. But all the noise will cease when the Father cups your chin and says, “Welcome home.” And with scarred hand he’ll wipe every tear from your eye. And you will dwell in the house of your Lord—forever.

Getting Max Fixed

There are many things I would like to fix about Max. The high pitched constant barking. The chewing up of everything. The fact that he will not come and finds it entertaining for me to chase him around the house. But, unfortunately, none of those things have a quick and easy solution. But there is one behavior that we can have him fixed for- humping. Yes, mother nature is calling Max to reproduce with anything he can get his paws around. I have had to remove his bed from the house because he was becoming way to intimate with it. My leg has been his next choice. Because of his need to answer nature's call, we are having him "fixed" this thanksgiving. My sister-in-law says not to hold my breath that this will end his humping days. I am hoping that it will at least slow down his little humping drive.

This announcement to my family regarding Max's upcoming special surgery has brought several reactions from various members. My husband, who is not particularly fond of Max has actually felt a little sorry for him. I am not sure what it is about Men and their opinions about neutering that causes them to react with fear. I am guessing that their ultimate fear is that their wives will want them to have special surgery one day. At any rate, I have been touched that Gerry actually feels sorry for him a little.

Little Gerry didn't really react at first. He didn't know what we were talking about. But then, in the car the other day, he asked his Dad what it meant to have Max fixed. This totally caught my husband off guard. I wish I could have been a fly on the wall. So, my surprised husband went ahead and told him straight up that they were removing that special part of his body so he can't make more puppies. When little Gerry got home, he was so excited to tell me what Max was going to be missing. Now, I am waiting for the other shoe to drop. Soon he is going to put together that the girl dog is the one who has the puppies. How does the boy dog's special parts "come into play" so to speak? If any of you have any suggestions on how to handle this one, please share. We haven't even told him about Santa yet!