Saturday, April 23, 2011

Mama Yeshua

(On this eve of another celebration of Jesus life, I am drawn again to thoughts of Mary. Below are my own humble musings concerning Mary's experience on that painful Friday.)

Not what I expected. Again.

His arrival had been so simple. Three of us. Joseph, me, Yeshua. The shepherds had come. The sweetness of his breaths. God’s promises. The angels.

Ending here??!

The chaos of the moment overwhelmed. The shouting crowds. People shoving past me, screaming insults. Pockets of people laughing in derision.

“Who is this, who has gotten himself into trouble?”

My mind could not comprehend this. This mayhem.

As I stumbled along with the other women, tears pouring down my face, my mind was back in that first ethereal encounter.

The angel. “Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you….Do not be afraid, Mary, you have found favor with God You will be with child and give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever; his kingdom will never end.”

“He will be great…”
“his kingdom will never end.”

Holy Abba, my eyes see 'ending' here. Our son carries his own cross! My heart is ripped in pieces for the child of my womb. His suffering. His blood. His agony.

He needs water. He needs help! Abba, do you see?!

Each nail, each cry pierced my soul. Oh that I could die too. Take me Father.

The women’s hands hold me up. We must struggle on. I watch the carnage hoping as only a mother can for the miracle!

You promised, my Abba! He will be great!

I do not understand.

They set the cross upright. He cannot breathe. I run toward him and am forced back. My agony permeates my joints and limbs.

My son!!!!

“Dear woman.”

His voice and eyes find me.

Precious eyes. Precious face.

“Dear woman, here is your son,”

His eyes find John. John crumbles but listens—“Here is your mother.”

John looks at me with the love and desperation we are all strangled by.

John nods.

No! My heart cries, NO!!

You. Yeshua. YOU ARE MY SON!!!!


Simeon’s words crashed in on me then.

“This child is destined to cause the falling and rising of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be spoken against, so the thoughts of many hearts will be revealed. And a sword will pierce your own soul too.”

“A sword will pierce your own soul too.”

I scream in agony.

“It is finished.”

There are no words to describe this. When your child departs the earth. My own soul crashed, shattered on the blood spattered earth. Spittle from the mouths of these murderers still wetting the ground around the wooden cross.

Events swirled around me. An earthquake. Darkness.

News from the temple that the curtain was torn in two. Burial.

We have no ground here.

A stranger to me. A prominent man. One of THEM buries my son.

John’s protective presence. Yeshua’s comfort, even here.

I am lifeless. Unable to move.

Unable to think.


“It is finished” my son said.


Almighty God. This is not what I expected.

(Luke 1:28-33;Luke 2:34;John 19:25-27;Luke 19:30)

Thursday, April 21, 2011


Here's a sampling of some of my favorites over the last six months.

Jesus Calling by Sarah Young
Deeply meaningful each and every day.

Boundaries by Dr Henry Cloud and Dr John Townsend
Eye opening and convicting. Greatly impacting my choices and decisions daily.

Paul 90 Days on His Journey of Faith by Beth Moore
I have been very blessed by this Beth Moore series of books. She has the 90 Days series for David, Jesus, John and Paul. These are shorter daily lessons than her weekly Bible studies and provide a wonderful lead-in to deeper study as I always experience with Beth Moore's work.

The Help by Kathryn Stockett
Overall, an amazing book! Absolutely loved it. I was discomforted by one segment involving a disturbed individual who also happened to be unclothed. Just a forewarning, and something to keep in mind if younger readers are reading the book. Might be a part to skip or at least discuss. I skipped most of that section and it didn't mess up the storyline for me.

Decision Points by George W Bush
Spoken from the Heart by Laura Bush
I read these books at the same time and loved that. I was reminded of the great cost of leadership and inspired by the dedication to lead with honor. Highly recommend both books!

Extraordinary, Ordinary People: A Memoir of Family by Condoleeza Rice
I was inspired and fascinated by Dr. Rice's memories and family heritage. I have always been a Condoleeza Rice fan and only respected her more after reading this heartfelt dedication to her beloved parents and family.

Upcoming reads on my Kindle:

Her Mother's Hope and Her Daughter's Dream by Francine Rivers
One Thousand Gifts: A Dare to Live Fully Right Where You Are by Ann Voskamp
Interrupted by Jen Hatmaker

Finally a quote (from Interrupted) that speaks my heart right now--

When Jesus told us to “take the lowest place” (Luke 14:10), it was more than a strategy for social justice. It was even more than wooing us to the bottom for communion, since that is where He is always found. The path of descent becomes our own liberation. We are freed from the exhausting stance of defense. We are no longer compelled to be right and are thus relieved from the burden of maintaining some reputation. We are released from the idols of greed, control, and status. The pressure to protect the house of cards is alleviated when we take the lowest place. Jen Hatmaker, Interrupted

Be blessed!

Monday, April 11, 2011

The Pain of Healing...

(journaled thoughts following our family's visit to a genocide memorial in Rwanda)

Piles of clothes. Piles. And piles.

The stench of decay is strong.

The entire area is hushed. Somber. We speak in low soft tones.

Agonizing stories. Memories.

Plaguing and oppressive.

Horrors. Bones.

I’m breathing in and out. But I feel suffocated.

I want to apologize to our guide. I’m sorry she has to tell me this.

I’m sorry there is such a story to tell.

Tiled, tidied graves.

Jeff remarks that things are more organized than when he was here before. Trees have grown.

I shield my children from the stories. The stories, seem too much for the ears and minds and eyes of my beloved.

Father God. How these seconds. Minutes. Hours. Days. Weeks. Months. The reality, not just the stories.

How you must have longed to shield your creation, your children. Each heart and thought and hair of the head. That you have numbered. Each soul you designed.

I am overwhelmed.

Throngs of people quietly fill the road in front of us. We somberly pull aside on the road to wait for their passage. Memorials and gatherings at every town and village along our route.

Never Again!

Our hearts join that cry.

His Spirit intercedes in our weakness with groans of the inexpressible.

Before us, a stark contrast. Life is full of this.

The unbelievable beauty and majesty of the mountains and hills. Vast expanse of hills and valleys. Gorillas. Green. Lush. Forest. Lake.

God’s creation declares His Glory. Declares His Love.

Here. Where evil reigned for that awful time. God’s declaration goes on.

He loves. Oh. How. He. Loves.

To proclaim so unceasingly. The I AM.

We never deserve You.

Father God forgive us. Forgive us who did nothing. Forgive us, humankind, who did everything.

We cry out for your mercy. Your healing and your peace.

Please start in my heart.

Cleanse the prejudice that hides or camouflages itself in the corners.

Cleanse any resentment and bitter root.

Yank and pull. No matter the pain.

I turn my eyes from the vastness of this place. The natural splendor and the wounds that remain.

And look inward. To what I can effect.

My forgiveness. My love. My heart.

And from there. The world changes.

One surrender at a time.