Monday, August 29, 2011

Cocooned. Part 1

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In this process of great transition and change, my own metamorphosis, things around have become more hazy and dark.  What was once the inching ahead of a fluffy greenWinking smile self has altogether stopped and slowed. and cocooned.

At first it might seem like this is a bad thing or at least an inconvenient or simply not a best thing.  But as the specimen that is me is coming into further examination, I realize, that this wrapping up tight and accepting a lack of ability to see, a darkness, is a necessary and best thing.

For it is not darkness for darkness ‘sake.  Or stopping for stopping’s sake.

It is a darkness for learning the light’s sake.  And a stopping for living-and-moving-and-having-being-in-Him-sake.

It’s not a wrapping up for the sake of the gray.  And not a pulling in tight for the sake of protecting self.

It is a wrapping up to have the space to form.  It is a pulling in tight to be taken to the core of my identity in Christ.

One that speaks in beauty and glory of…

…every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places

…chosen in HIM before the foundation of the world!

…in order that we become holy and blameless BEFORE HIM!

…IN LOVE predestined FOR ADOPTION as sons {meaning, having the FULL RIGHTS of inheritance}

…the PRAISE of His Glorious Grace!

…being blessed in the Beloved!

…REDEMPTION!!! through his blood—the forgiveness of our trespasses—according to the RICHES OF HIS GRACE!

…GRACE lavished on us

…intended for GLORY—a reflection of the plan in Christ, the Beloved, brought about in the fullness of time and uniting ALL THINGS IN HEAVEN AND EARTH to fit into His Matchless Beauty!!!!

Ephesians 1:3-10 {paraphrased and interpreted, BUT…it’s ALL there;}

playdatesatthewellspring            SoloDeoGloriaSisterhood

…Ahh…yes, it’s here I rest and curl up, or cocoon, on Abba, Daddy’s lap and speak my thanks:

  • for all that’s above…WHO YOU SAY I AM
  • for the impenetrable rights of a ‘son’…bound for GLORY indestructible and immeasurable riches
  • for never being able to know it enough—always a fullness yet to know
  • for You…to behold You in Your Redemptive Glory
  • for new days and seasons of marriage
  • for the commitment to ‘something more’ as we journey
  • for YOUR GRACE alone which keeps
  • for new days and seasons with kids
    • for ‘Jesus Storybook Bible’ and listening to and Mommy and Daddy loving it
    • for son who gets things now and will {prayerfully} keep getting it deeper
    • for ‘you are good!’ that God sings over him
    • for daughter’s oh-so-very-almost-two and the tantrums to go with it
    • for humility through screams…hers, not mineWinking smile
    • for ‘where’s Susie?’ peek-a-boo games she starts at dinner
    • for son loving to hit the ball and run the bases
    • for reunions with cousins!
    • for little boys own language of pirates and tackles
    • for Your preserving their bonds even in distanceSmile
  • for velvety folds to sink into…a borrowed and comfy bed and a spiritual one that’s mine
  • for moving into a new one and  hopefully the last before the big move.
  • for providing a space of our own to be a family…quaint and beautiful
  • for Psalms 62:8
  • for the BEST always and ever…yet to come!

#1516-48

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Friday, August 26, 2011

Five Minute Friday: Older

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{Psst:  It’s Lisa-Jo, the Gypsy Mama’s, Happy Birthday—she’s the Five Minute Lady…go say Happy Birthday to her if you haven’t already!}

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Go:

Older IS wiser…this adage is true I’m finding, but also:

Older is free-er.

Older is full-er.

Older is sweeter.

Older is stronger.

Older is deeper.

Older is happier! {yes, it’s true}

Older is MORE…

More Life to embrace, More love to know, More Hope to see as your own, More Promises that have rung truer, longer to claim, More Longing and readiness for Heaven, More Joy in all that is this life you’ve come to know so well. 

And Mostly, More of Him.  Recognition of need has become as natural as breathing and so you cling to Your Only Hope in deeper and fuller ways.

I recognize that older may not be all of these wonderful things, yet encourage, YOU, FRIEND, that walking with a Faithful Lover of Your Soul, Yes. it is indeed a deeper, fuller, and truly MORE way as you walk closer and closer to Home and your heart’s deepest, deepest desire. Face-to-Face with HimPrincess

Stop.


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Friday, August 19, 2011

Five Minute Friday: New

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End of Colorado and coming home 014

New.

Oh New!  New Life.  New Day.  New Dawn…as if it is ever an old dawn. 

New Love.  New Joy.  New Dreams.  New Hopes.  New Strength.

New Fears.  New Failures.  New Struggles…

though often the old recycled.  New Doubts.  New Battles... 

Renewed Faith.  Renewed Life.  Renewed Joy.  Renewed Hope. 

Re-newed…

As the New brings its great expectations that a veil of tears can often cloud…

in the death of what was once new

comes all that it is to enter this fray of daring to bear a hope eternal. 

a hope resilient. 

a hope unconquerable

and incorruptible.

New…I love…always in Him—all things new.

But I know I love it more for it is a New that in all that is my Life, Joy, Hope has become re-newed…and at the core it is I who have become altogether new and this will never end forever and ever—the chances to be re-born into an ever-increasing Glory for all eternity.

Oh New Day.  I cannot wait and yet I see your sweet face…

Never Stop;}

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Tuesday, August 16, 2011

when I think about Home {these days}

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Those of you who have spent any kind of consistent time here know that my word for 2011 is ‘Home’.  I picked it because I knew that in all that I would experience in this year of great transition would mean that Home would not be bound by a physical place, because, well, in that sense we would be spending most of the year ‘home~less’.

It has been a priceless thing to constantly come before my Abba Father with the weariness of exile and sojourning and all that feels unsettled and ask Him again to show me what Home is.

One sermon by Tim Keller, I have listened to close to ten times is called ‘We Had to Celebrate’ and it is one in His amazing series that goes with his book ‘the Prodigal God’.  They are available free on-line and I highly recommend each one.

In ‘We Had to Celebrate’, Keller talks about what C.S. Lewis refers to in his sermon, {also available on-line} ‘The Weight of Glory’, as all of our desperate longings for the happiest places and times of our lives, the places of belonging, are really memory traces BECAUSE WE REMEMBER THE GARDEN.  A collective unconscious memory of a time of perfection and perfect communion with God and one another.  And since the Fall, we have all longed for that to be recovered.  We all, in a certain sense, live our lives as exiles.

Lewis also says that even if you could go back to a favorite family place or friend memory, it would cheat you.  You would find it so much less than it was, even then.  You see it was a moment, a place, in time and history as well as a specific group of people and physical place.  And the joy found ‘there’ was a closer rendering to the Perfect Garden and a foretaste of our perfect Home in Heaven.  Necessarily, these ‘homes’ can not be duplicated or even maintained over the years…buildings are torn down, people die or rifts and falling outs change relationships.

I am living in this understanding of Home right now.  We are staying in my hometown as we finish our support.  However, none of my family lives here anymore.  The closest I have is the grave marker where my mother is buried a couple of towns away. 

What is exquisitely ironic, if I may call it that, is that although I am staying a mere mile from one of my homes of ten years, it is no longer there.  Earlier this year, it was torn down as the home was in such terrible state (and had been even while we were living there).  The park that I go to walk almost daily is right across the street from the site of where our home was and I am walking a trail at the park my mom walked so many years.

Even more, just two miles or so from this Home, is a farmhouse which stands but a barn and pastureland which are also gone.  Vanished.  This is where I lived for ten years previously.

Somehow I have to come to grips with a concept of Home independent of the physical space or its inhabitants.  I have to internalize this Home I loved and allow it to become an ever~growing soul longing for the Forever Home that awaits one day.  Somehow.  And boldly to ask that the pieces of Home that remain though physically have literally vanished will not only sustain me, but inspire me to be a person who embodies Home wherever in the world I may be and with whomever I may be.

I have recently come to receive these verses from Psalms 84 (our family psalm) as a word over my life.

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Blessed are those whose strength is in You,

In whose heart are the highways to Zion.

As they pass through the Valley of Baca

They make it a place of springs.

The autumn rains also cover it with pools,

They go from strength to strength;

Each one appears before God in Zion.

~Psalm 84:5-7

How about you?  What does Home mean to you?  I would love to run a series of Guest Posts on different people’s concept of Home.  If you would be interested in sharing your thoughts here at Fan the Flame, leave a comment or e-mail me directly at aalleman_03 (at) yahoo (dot) com.

Use it on Monday SoloDeoGloriaSisterhood

Now for thanks…

Precious Lord who is showing me the way Home:

  • Thank You for your never-ending patience as You help me find my way Home
  • Thank You for the love that embodied Home in my mother—28 years of it!
  • Thank You that You have placed in my heart the highways to Zion 
  • Thank You that we need so very little of what we think we need~you make valleys of Baca’s warm and loving Homes
  • Thank You for all of the ways You are providing for us right now:
    • A wonderful Home to stay in as we finish our support
    • The love of Home and welcome all around
    • Home-cooked meals and recipes
    • It’s a joy to be together
    • Time is precious because soon we will be far
    • A sweetness of appreciation that comes from separation
    • All around, reminders of Your goodness over EVERYTHING!
  • Thank You for the little precious joys I can call my own:
    • For picnics pretend and real
    • For another Happy Place right where we are
    • For playground equipment that was the same I used now my own climb it
    • For my old elementary school in the backyard of where we are staying and their enjoyment of its playground
    • For conquering fears and ouchies
    • For walking in the rain drenched grass
    • For a daughter who will not call me anything but ‘Daddy’ and ‘Abby’…oh my!
    • For a little buddy who always says ‘Yes, Jesus is in my heart.’
  • Thank You for the feeling of homesickness for our Home awaiting in Hungary
  • Thank You for showing us more of You
  • Thank You for a peace that surpasses understanding
  • Thank You for all that is Life
  • Thank You for Your hand holding ours…carrying us when we can’t go on
  • Thank You that in You the BEST, FOR ALL OF YOUR OWN, IS ALWAYS YET TO COME!

#1488-1515

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Thursday, August 11, 2011

Five Minute Friday: Beauty

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Colorado Summer 076

Beauty:

Beauty is made of the nonsensical, whimsical, glorious God adventure of this much-afraid and weak one who wants Him to make something beautiful out of the journey.

Beauty is when your best friend and hubby takes your hand and asks you again and again to make a home for God in this crazy broken world.

Beauty is Weighty and weightier when you tell your little loves that you pray they rise up as the ‘stars in the heavens’ to be counted for Him in their generation.  To know that it is only the Spirit of God and His moving in large ways in and through you as you show Him to these fragile hearts that will lead them to a wild abandoned life for a Heavenly King and His Country.

Beauty is throwing all caution to the wind and rolling up sleeves and singing free to the One who puts in your heart the highways to Zion.  To contemplate without excuse or regret that Great Wedding Feast where you will be adorned as bride for the King of Kings and when you will share Bride with the Beauty of All Time in the Great Chorus of the Redeemed.

Beauty begins in His loving imagination and as you fly on His Wings in the Wonder of it All.  Of Him.

Stop.


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Friday, August 5, 2011

Five Minute Friday: Whole

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Whole…

Go:

Broken.  Completely broken and emptied.  That is what is the theme of these days and yet as I think about whole I think about now.  How is that?

I am finding a Wholly Other Sufficiency precisely because of the empty and broken and weaning from the world and stability outside of Him and the husband and children He has given me.

I am finding wholeness in the desperate need for Him and the necessity of moment’s food as even days ahead are not for me to contemplate, the unknown marking it so fully.

I am finding wholeness too in the One who necessitates my vision and my meaning and my WHOLE focus of heart and soul and life and eyes that must rest fixed on none other.

Whole in the moments of all that overwhelms and whole in ways that only the King of Paradoxes can bring.  Die to Live.  Lose to Gain.  Surrender to Receive.  Empty to be Filled.  Broken to be made Divinely, Miraculously Whole.

Wholly You.  Wholly All.  Wholly Mine.  Wholly Blessed.

Stop.


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