Tuesday, June 23, 2009

And They Will Become One Flesh

My facebook post today:
"31 years ago today I married the love of my life~our love only grows sweeter with time. It's worth it to work through and push through those earlier years when two flesh clash and clang together in their efforts to become one. It is soooo worth it! To God be the Glory!"

God tells us in Genesis 2:21-24,

"But for Adam no suitable helper was found. So the LORD God caused the man to fall into a deep sleep; and while he was sleeping, he took of the man's ribs and closed up the place with flesh. Then the LORD God made a woman from the rib he had taken out of the man and he brought her to the man. The man
said, 'This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh;
she shall be called woman, for she was taken out of man. For this reason a man [and woman] will leave his [her] father and mother and be united to his [her] wife [husband] and they will become one flesh."

I believe that as we marry and are united with our life mate the process of becoming one flesh is begun. It's spiritual. It's physical. It's mental. It's emotional. Becoming one flesh is a lifetime of learning to love your mate more than yourself and living that love out in a vast array of ways. It can be a hard beginning, two distinctly different human beings learning to let go of our own selfish selves in an expression of love for another person. That doesn't mean we lose our individuality, but allow room for the other into our being. In the process we become fuller and richer individuals. It is ultimately a beautiful gift and process designed by the LORD God. It is also a process that is facilitated, enabled, and empower by the LORD God as we submit to Him.

When Kerry and I were married, I was given this poem by one of my grandmothers.

Take a lump of clay.
Wet it, pat it.
Make a statue of you
and make a statue of me.
Then shatter them,
clatter them,
add some water
and break them
and mold them
into a statue of you
and a statue of me.
Then in mine, there are bits of you
And in you there are bits of me.
Nothing ever shall keep us apart.

She added, "If you don't understand it now, keep it and in later years it might mean more to you. I hope you two will be happy. I know you are both wonderful people, both of you will have to work at making a good life together. Married life is not a one sided thing, but as you go through life and as you grow older life should grow better. I have high hopes for you."

She was right =)

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Scripture for Memory and Mediation #12

Psalm 62:8 NIV
"Trust in Him at all times,
O people;
pour out your hearts to Him, for God is our refuge."

There are times in our lives when we are surrounded by a great host of friends and family. Some of those are so precious and allow us the latitude in friendship to pour out our hearts to them. There are times that that's what we need because it's like a relief valve and the stresses, pain, and pressures are released in being able to share our heart with someone who cares.

Other times we are alone or at least it seems that way. In these times, the stresses, pain, and pressures expand within us so much that we think we are going to burst for lack of being able to release them.

As children of God and Christ followers we know that He is there and cherishes His children pouring out our hearts to Him so that He may pour out His heart to us. But often, we forget that because we need or want someone in the flesh to help us through.

When God had me "stumble" onto this Word, I stood back and spiritually shook my head at myself. He invites us to pour out of our hearts to Him. He is the ultimate friend and listener and really He is THE ONE WITH THE ANSWERS; He is our refuge. I'm just now reminded of the old hymn "What a Friend We Have in Jesus". I am a great lover of Contemporary Christian music and also Praise and Worship music, but having grown up in church the lyrics of the foundational hymns seem to always come to mind to remind me of the truths I've know all my life.

What a Friend We Have in Jesus
Lyrics: Joseph M. Scriven

"What a friend we have in Jesus, all our sins and griefs to bear! What a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer! O what peace we often forfeit, O what needless pain we bear, all because we do not carry everything to God in prayer.

Have we trials and temptations? Is there trouble anywhere? We should never be discouraged; take it to the Lord in prayer. Can we find a friend so faithful who will all our sorrows share? Jesus knows our every weakness; take it to the Lord in prayer.

Are we weak and heavy laden, cumbered with a load of care? Precious Savior, still our refuge; take it to the Lord in prayer. Do thy friends despise, forsake thee? Take it to the Lord in prayer! In his arms he'll take and shield thee; thou wilt find a solace there."

Excuse me now, I think Jesus and I have an overdue appointment.

Monday, June 15, 2009

New day, new week, new beginnings, new opportunities.
"This is the day the LORD has made;
let us rejoice and be glad in it!"
Psalm 118:24

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Scripture for Memory and Mediation #11

Psalm 25:10-11 NIV

"All the ways of the LORD are loving and faithful for those who keep the demands of His covenant. For the sake of Your name, O LORD, forgive my iniquity, though it is great."

"All the ways of the LORD are loving and faithful for those who keep the demands of His covenant."

Loving and Faithful...what a precious gift we have received in our God. When life is a challenge, when hopes are dashed, when questions go unanswered...Our God remains Loving and Faithful. Hold on to it, cling to it, stand on it. Even when you may not feel it or see it in your circumstances...it remains true. He sees and knows the beginning from the end and He, in His sovereignty and in His love for you, sees the big picture and will work all things out for good to those who love Him and are called according to His purpose. (Romans 8:28).

"For the sake of Your name, O LORD, forgive my iniquity, though it is great."

Because His grace flows so generously, I too often forget how great even my "smaller" sins are against His holiness and purity. I understand that God doesn't see sin in degrees, but in our human minds we see the consequences of our sin in degrees. But my sins, whatever they are, are set against the backdrop of His holiness and purity not against my concept of sin.

Picture this:

In the beginning a canvas covered with these-the holiness and purity of Almighty God; not a flaw or impurity in it. Then...SPLASH across this pristine canvas our sins...anger, envy, coveteousness, bitterness, lies, laziness, neglect of His temple...careless, hateful, or judgmental words, self-focus, prayerlessness, grumbling, idolatry, ungratefulness, waster of God given time...and so much more.Do our sins not stand out in glaring contrast-ugly and painful? Now picture Jesus stepping into the scene and draping the ugliness with a red cloth symbolizing His blood sacrifice covering our sin.

Precious Jesus, THANK YOU!