God’s Word for Today: MISSING
I was busy/busy today with numerous computer tasks that had been neglected due to a busy/busy week of other higher priority tasks. Some days one just has to dig in and catch up on duties that have been buried by busy. But busy isn’t even God’s Word for Today. Am I “missing” something?
During my computer work, I was listening to The Piano Guys (see photos). They have a selection of albums out, that deliver an amazing collaboration of Piano and Cello music. I have always been quite fond of any form of piano music. My tastes have advanced into the addition of the Cello. Some beautiful, soul calming music that is not for everyone (just like Nebraska), but is worth at least a few brief moments of your time. Maybe it will grow on you. Just like Nebraska.
One of the Piano Guys songs hit me like an emotional sledge hammer. My eyes started glazing over with joy, sadness, deep memories, and longing. My heart felt a heaviness that snuck its way onto my chest without control. My gut any empty tomb of pain. I had awoken Missing. It was hitting me with a double whammy.
First, I was missing Mom. She had always fed our family a good dose of music. Music of all shapes and forms. Most memorable now, was Mom’s love for classical music featuring piano, and if old brain recalls, some cello mixed in.
Second, I was missing Dad. One of the Piano Guys songs that came on was Nearer My God to Thee. One of Dad’s favorites. I could instantly hear Dad singing this in his perfect monotone, flat, equal to my singing ability, style. No matter the delivery, it came straight from Dad’s heart. Straight from his love for God. Now my eyes are glazing again.
Ecclesiastes 12:6-7 Remember Him—before the silver cord is severed, and the golden bowl is broken; before the pitcher is shattered at the spring, and the wheel broken at the well, and the dust returns to the ground it came from, and the spirit returns to God who gave it.
Mom and Dad have returned to the ground. Their spirit has returned to God who gave it. And I am missing them. Some days the missing is barely a wisp of seconds. Other days like now, the proverbial HAMMER. Missing, grief, emptiness, pain, longing, the list never ends. The missing will never cease until I am the same dust. That is OK.
This missing is, life. I believe we are not missing what once was, we are actually missing what could have been. Times of love, laughter, fond memories, listening to music, talking, singing off tune. Missing everything that still could have been with loved ones, family, and dear friends.
I’m not missing the past. I am missing the now and the future. At times, it is a tough row to hoe.
The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me, because the Lord has anointed me… to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. — Isaiah 61:1, Isaiah 61:3
So, I must still pass each day as one of God’s blessed anointing. Then I can pass on my crown of beauty, my oil of joy, and my garment of praise. This, till the wheel is broken at the well, and I join the missing……… Amen and Amen.
God’s Word for Today: Lights
Occasionally while walking through life, you happen to glance at something that has been unnoticed for ages. You know, one of those “ah ha” moments that grabs your senses, wakes up, and presents itself. Then, if life has spared you enough time in its busyness to ponder what is right there in front, a reflection emerges. Such is the case of the attached photos.
There was a day not long ago, that I designated strictly for cleaning out, rearranging, and hopefully making presentable, the dining room in our farmhouse. This is the house my Grandma Effie was born in, literally. It is the house where I was so wonderfully and lovingly raised. The house that contains over 100 years of family memories. It is also the house that now only occasionally is a stopping place for wayward and busy Carlson travelers.
While tackling the undaunting tasks of overhauling the Dining Room, I happened to look up at the light that hangs so wonderfully in the center of the room (see first photo). Throughout the years, I have passed under this light thousands of times. It doesn’t get much attention. Either it is on, or it is off. If one of the bulbs is burnt out, it might not receive attention for like, ever. But on this day, I really looked at the fixture, this light so dependable, but apparently, so neglected. It needed help. There was also born, a reflection realizing the connection between this light fixture and my life.
The glass bowls that so wonderfully soften the brilliance of the harsh bulbs, were filthy. When the light is on it deceptively hides the dirt and death. Turn the light off, (see second/third photos) and you discover the record-breaking quantities of dead things. Nasty, the definition. These lights represented an unspeakable truth that I shamefully tend to suppress.
To me, these lights equal the sinful nature of man. In all their brilliance and appeal, there are hidden dangers unseen. You forever desire the contents of these deceitful traps. Do I need to list the vices? I don’t believe so. You know what yours are. You know what has captured you, drawn you in, held you, then left you dead in a pile with other victims. We all have them. We have all been there. I have been to many.
Why are we attracted to things that aren’t good for us? What is the appeal of a light that will only destroy us? Even if we escape, scarred, half broken, barely crawling out, striving to do better, washing clean, damnit anyway, we head back. Or, maybe we put that destruction behind us and go seeking another false light. They are all never-ending traps. I hate them, but can in no way avoid them. I can’t seem to find the needed strength.
Romans 7:19 For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do - this I keep on doing.
Well, here we go. The Bible takes you right to those lights of life that are so deceptive. The ones that falsely attract you, pull you in, and slowly destroy you. All the shiny, colorful things of this world that one can’t seem to keep their eyes off of. I quit.
Now, read all of what Paul is saying in Romans. Realize you aren’t alone. Acknowledge that man has been and will be falsely pulled in the wrong direction so very easily again and again and again. Learn of a way out. Read on.
Romans 7:24-25: What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? Thanks be to God who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord!
Jesus is the Word, the Truth, and the Light. Through His Light, and only His Light shining, can you overcome the attraction of all those hidden lights that want to destroy. The last photo gives a new light shining down. The Trinity. The Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit to guide you, to provide the much needed strength, guidance, peace, and light for your life anew …….. Amen and amen………