Here

Well, hello there to anyone still hanging around these incredibly silent halls.

Don’t adjust your dial (oy, does that ever date me….😏)

Yes, it’s me.

I am here….

And I’m not.

Huh? What now? πŸ€”

Well, I don’t want this to be misconstrued.

This is not the umpteenth “Welcome Back, Kotter” moment in my life.

Expect no sudden, prolific flow from this pitiful scribe’s brain.

Those things which I wrestled with when I closed this door continue to press in on all sides. My ability to articulate as well as just the sheer drive to do so remain largely seized up inside.

Seriously. You should see how my fingers stutter over the keys right now, trying their darndest to summon up the right phrasing.

But such is the land of living. Questions dangle, obligations loom, but still, we put one foot in front of the other.

Or one finger after another on homerow….😏

So….if this is so much like a dental visit ( the yanking teeth kind), the biggest question might be why do it at all?

Well, nothing profound really.

For there are no big “wows” in my world to report.

The family is in the thick of what it always is right now…school, music, and scraping together a livelihood.

My pain goes on, too, but, hey, there is breath in my lungs, so that’s good.

But, overall, it’s such a nothingness to share I hesitated long and hard whether I even should.

Still, something in my gut just had a longing to come and be here.

Just for a few moments.

To say hello. To say I miss you, friends.

To say I think about and pray for you often.

And to remind myself vulnerability isn’t the same as weakness.

That derision isn’t always a forgone conclusion to opening my troubled soul.

That I can still form a few paltry words here and maybe find a friend genuinely glad to see me on the other end.

For there is worth in that simple thing, I suppose.

In this all-too-often harsh, cold-shouldered world, we have need of one another.

I know this in the depths of my being but, sometimes, depression can hem in on all sides and give a pretty convincing argument to just stay in that isolated place for safety’s sake.

Admitting to it can be the challenge of a lifetime.

But, perhaps, well worth trying…

Again, where this isn’t to say I am returning to penning a lot of profound thought, there is a lovely something in being here I cannot deny.

Now, I don’t really know what awaits me following the press of the ol’ send button, of course.

And, again, no idea what the future of my work here holds.

Yet, I know I must follow the Godly hand guiding it…

So, for the first time in months, let me say thanks for reading, dear friends. Blessings and prayers. ❀

Watch “MercyMe – Greater (Official Music Video)” on YouTube

Hello, there, dear friends!

I just realized I kind of unintentionally halted my song sharing here.

And me with so many more on my list that this sort of thing could go on for many years to come! 😏

Anyway, looking to knock another one off my list starting now…

The one I chose this time around is another favorite of our little youth group. We have recently been able to get back to gathering in person (Yay!). This was definitely high on the request list.

Oh, my, what an extra sweet joy it was to listen to those kiddos raise their instruments and their voices in praise this past week! It was like a warm blanket wrapping around us all, securing us to Him in an insecure time.

I think we all need that right now, that reminder there is One who is greater.

To remember He is there to equip us broken with more than we can dream…

Anyway, hope you enjoy.

Blessings and prayers! ❀

The Monsters Are Still Due on Maple Street

Hello, dear friends!

Still gathering my thoughts lately and leaning on His presence all the while.

Hope you are feeling Him near to you as well.

It occurred to me this morning that this piece from a few months ago remains very apt for where we are right now. As such, while I am still in the gathering thoughts phase, I figured it was worth a reshare.

Thanks for reading. May it remind us of He who holds the truth and the salvation we all need. Blessings and prayers! ❀

https://alwaysajesusgirl.wordpress.com/2020/09/29/the-monsters-are-still-due-on-maple-street/

Silence

Hey, there, friends. Not a lot to speak but the pondering of why I have not a lot to speak. 😏

Should have something to say, God.

Why don’t I have anything to say?

Loud, clamoring chaos has ripped

Holes in the very

Fabric of our country.

And here I sit in relative silence.

Where are my carefully crafted yet

Sharp assessments of our crumbling

Society?

Where is wise counsel to encourage

And exhort?

The pressing plea to keep You at our

Center?

I survey the oh-so-human travesty of

The last little while

And I find my response coming up

So…quiet.

My words quite nearly, almost

Astonishingly…absent.

Why, Lord? Surely I should have a

Wealth of thoughts to pen today!

Why the silence in my soul?

Ah…Silence.

And here is the answer:

Well, daughter, the thoughts are there,

Gathering in your heart,

Filling in the well,

Preparing to flow

When the time is right

And the words are clear.

For now, no flurry is needed.

No profoundness required.

For silence is sometimes the place you must go

When the noise of the world is ringing in your head

And you recognize

You must be earnestly seeking to hear from Me ….

May we all find those moments of silence in these chaotic times and earnestly listen for His voice! Blessings and Prayers, my friends!

Truth

Frankly, finding myself terribly weary of sussing out truth in this inherently deceitful world. Just some thoughts scribbled down on the matter, plus a much-needed cry to our God to remind us that only in reliance on Him can any actual truth ever be known…

Truth is such a slippery thing these

Days;

So much foolish frippery being added

To the words we say.πŸ™„

Wills mangled by the rancorous and

The tight-fisted;

Society’s ills strangle the night as

Peace gets twisted.

Honesty a virtue to which so many

May lay claim.

Yet so few pay the dues, pitching aside

Any real blame.

We defy integrity with the lie of its

“Relativity”

And hide under the guise of harmless

“Unconventionality”.

A pleasing narrative becomes the

Treasured thing

And it tragically matters not whether

It possesses a trustworthy ring.

Tampering becomes but a noble

Pursuit.

Facts? A pesky fly to crush beneath

Your boot.

Newspeak puddles upon newspeak,

Serves its purpose in muddling the

Ability to think.

And, pretty soon, the good news of

Our Lord for us

Slides from our fingers, forgotten

As we neglect to examine the

Lingering spoon before us

To check whether what we’re being

Fed is rotten.

Oh, Father, we are much more frail

And feeble-minded

Than any of us will venture to admit

To!

Oh, how we need to be reminded

Of the sincerity found only in You!

Above a world so unwieldy and so

Bleak,

Help us seek Your words and

Yours alone!

Unfurl once again bright hopes to

The searching, the meek

And let Your truths once more

Provide the light to atone!

Friends, in this increasingly dismaying and dishonest world may we indeed seek the truths found in Him and Him alone! Blessings and prayers! Thanks for reading my scribbles! 😊❀

Jesus Is Not Your Political Patron

All day I have thought I ought to have something to say. It’s an important day in our nation, after all.

Now, it’s late evening in Kansas and I finally realized I really have nothing new to say.

And where I could feel bad about that, I can hear God saying it’s ok.

And to instead reshare these truths I feel He gave me to encourage us all to keep our hearts centered on what is right.

For, come what may, He is yet on His throne, our Savior-our one and only Savior-sitting at His right hand.

And the Holy Spirit remains our comfort, peace, and ready guide-whatever our future looks like.

These things are where our focus ought to lie, my friends.

So… ok, yes, I had a little smidge to say, apparently… 😏

But, enough now. Follow the link for a (re)read of my thoughts on the whole political matter at hand…

Blessings and prayers, dear friends! Remember He is in control! ❀

https://alwaysajesusgirl.wordpress.com/2020/07/22/jesus-is-not-your-political-patron/

Watch “Harvest – “Because I Am”” on YouTube

Hey, friends. It’s been a bit again since I shared a song. This one is pulled from early childhood memories. My dad, the quiet, unassuming metalhead, had discovered Christian music shortly after I was born. This song was a distinct departure from his usual, but one he fell in love with and therefore couldn’t stop playing.

Its tune captured my young self over time and then, life happened and memory of it shifted to the background until a couple of years ago.

We had had an awesome day of Goodwill finds, including a fairly nice turntable. I was excited to begin recollecting vinyl and chatted with my folks about it. Next thing I knew, my mom and dad were combing through their collection to pass some on to me.

Harvest was among the ones Dad shared, which I politely took without quite remembering it yet. I took it home and, honestly, put it away for a time, more entranced by the classic rock mom had chosen to give me 😏 ( Hey, CCR is another huge part of my childhood soundtrack. It was hard to resist the unique sound of their “I Heard it Through the Grapevine” on that turntable.).

And that was that for a time.

But, something in me one morning was drawn to straightening my collection…maybe because they were overflowing my makeshift shelves. 😁And, I picked up the Harvest album among the others and perused the titles, trying again to recall much about them.

And, then, all at once, the melody came back to me. I simply had to put it on then and there. And I was instantly drawn in again, reminded of the sheer beauty and truth in the story woven, sung and played in such a gloriously heartfelt manner.

For He is the resurrection and the life indeed! The joy and the hope of knowing that is beyond measure! It buoys the spirit on the bleakest of days!

Something sorely needed in this dark and troubled world.

And, so, I pray you enjoy, my friends.

That your hope of everlasting life through Jesus is lifted and your faith is affirmed by this incredible truth.

Blessings and prayers to you! ❀

Good Grief, Charlie Brown or The Red Baron Strikes Again

Fair warning: I feel a bit like a cranky old lady tonight. It isn’t that this is not true to form, but it may sound a tad more sarcastic than my more poetical side. But, when He lays it on my heart, what can I do but speak it? Besides, I always remember Apostle Paul had a fair amount of sarcastic wit when he had a piece to speak. So, if the author of a good portion of our New Testament could do it, I figure God can utilize it in me, too. πŸ™‚

So…that title might stir some supposing on subject matter….

But, no...this isn’t truly about Apple’s decision to snatch away childhood memories, though the greed that appears to be behind the decision to hold the Peanuts specials more or less captive and the price-gouging of DVDs by some that has followed does play into the broader picture I wish to speak of:

Rampant self-centeredness.

In a world consumed by pandemic, it is the real plague, or to pull out the Charlie Brown analogy a bit, the Red Baron of our existence.

Always has been, honestly, though this easy access age seems to put it endlessly in our faces.

It’s what causes the all-too-abundant parade of posturing that comes out of so many walks of life:

Be it Hollywood, Washington, or-dare I say- our own neighborhood.

Far too often, in countless ways, everything boils down to “looking out for number one”.

If I get my piece of the pie or heck, the whole pie, I’m good. πŸ™„

Forget the other guy because the other guy ought to be looking out for himself.

Because, really, isn’t life about saving our own hides?

Covering our own respective hind ends?

Getting our faces in whatever limelight is afforded us?

Staking our claims.

Pressing for what we want and when we want it.

Stacking our wallets!

Getting the job, the car, the suit, the house.

The Life!

Oh, and the rep. Mustn’t ever forget the proper, politically astute, carefully couched, self-righteous posing that allows for your rep.

Most important accessory of all!

So, when you have all that together, who gives a flying fig for the other guy?

Unless, of course, the other guy can provide a photo op for your “charitable cause” or especially, as more often the case in our virtue signaling culture, if he dares to cramp your style.

Then, you care about him.

Or at least, in case of the latter, about what he’s doing wrong.

Then, he must hear about it and hear about it from you. For only you can say it right.

Not to mention all the likes you’ll accumulate from your followers or how much more you can amass for your brand when you verbally or textually take him down.

That much more power to wield from atop the tower you rest yourself upon!

Hurrah!

After all, it’s your life, right?

It’s all about yourself, is it not? πŸ™„

Ummm….no.

Ok. Not loud enough.

Ahem. Again:

Noooooo!

None of this life-I repeat-none of it is meant to be about ourselves.

No…despite so much pumped into us from birth on to the contrary, it’s really about one thing and one thing only:

Christ and Him crucified.

Rejoicing in the amazing fact He did it for us self-serving folks and seeking to instead serve Him.

And what does that often look like here on this earth?

Well… looking out for the other guy.

After all, there’s this from the Savior himself:

Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’

Matt. 25:40.

Now, this is emphatically NOT so you can look good on social media.

Nor so you can put the other guy “in his place”.

*Cough.* Plank in the eye. πŸ˜‰ *Cough*.

Rather, it is so you can have the joy of sharing the love of Jesus with another human life without regard to what you can get out of it and, prayerfully, point the way to salvation through Him.

That’s it. Really.

God’s generosity to us lending itself to what should be ours to others.

Funny how that nasty Red Baron of self-centeredness has a way of complicating a truly simple matter, isn’t it?😏

Oh, may we defeat this tendency for self-centeredness! May the Lord press on our hearts love and concern for the other guy!

Thanks for reading, dear friends! Much love, many blessings and prayers to you! ❀

Looking for the Lighter Ray

Hello, friends. A bit of honesty here. Today is just…gray. And I admit I just feel it. I figure if there were times King David had to do this, I have to allow myself to have these times, too…

Midafternoon…

Where did the sun go?

Wonders the mind sliding down slow

Into the deepness of the gathering gloom.

Clouds draw overhead tight

Yet spread out fat,

Making day seem the gray nearest night

And the patch of earth I’m on dull and flat.

And here we are again it seems…

Fall crawls again

And the chill sets in.

I should be admiring the skinned knee trees,

Or, at least, the changing hues of the maple leaves.

But, today, Lord help me, I’m tired.

Almost wholly uninspired.

Want to tell everyone about the joy that yet resides

Further on to the core inside.

Yet the chore of living today

Has got my doldrums most on display,

My joints aching and all reason for laughter going astray…

Welcome to the nagging scratch

Of a depressive sort of day,

Oppressive in its tap-you-on-the-back-of-the-noggin way.

Ick. Yet, somehow, I know I will yet catch

Some bit of a lighter sunset ray

When I sit down and recall

The strength that summons itself

When I take it all

To my Father’s throne

And remind myself

No, Marisa, really and truly-you are not alone…

Thanks for reading, dear friends! Hugs and prayers! ❀

What a Friend

Hey, friends. Lots of thoughts rolling.

Some on the cusp of creation; some more fully formed but not just there yet.

Some honestly rather heavy.

Heavy but, admittedly, necessary.

Example: the news daily brings us countless reminders of the temporary nature of fame, fortune, and the like.

Worldly accomplishments beckon us here on earth yet they still shift and blow away sooner or later, much like the foolish man’s house on the sand…

For nothing comes with us-not a guitar prowess or a cool rep or or a knowlegable facade.

Not even our own “niceness”.

No…nothing but our faith we carried in life.

Now, it might be faith in a thing.

A person.

Our own abilities.

Our bank account.

Or-prayerfully-it will be in Jesus Christ alone.

For those whose faith proved futile, unfortunately, all that awaits is a darkness beyond darkness-an eternal separation from God.

A hard truth indeed!

But, for those who have trusted Christ alone for salvation, there is an eternity of joy and peace in His presence!

So…mixed into those tough thoughts of grief for others who likely may’ve passed without placing their faith on Him alone, is the gratitude for that sure salvation and the rest in that steady companionship-both here and now and in the life to come. πŸ™‚

And all that, be it deemed random or no in the midst of the heavyish and less heavish thought train here today, reminds me of a song.

I checked and, yep, it’s been a bit since my last song share. So…yes. It’s time.

Yay! πŸ™‚

Today, after some (pretty major) deliberation, I decided I should share our community youth group “theme song”- “What a Friend” by Matt Maher.

Or one of the theme songs, at least. 😏 We are a seriously musical lot.

Anyway…it’s such a comforting word in the midst of troubling times!

Now, this version is likely a lot more professional sounding than what our little group pulls off with our rudimentary acoustics.

But, at any rate, may we sing along with what is the most important key- sincere hearts, rejoicing at the truth of lives redeemed and an eternal home to look forward to.

Blessings and Prayers, dear friends! Keep your eyes on Him! ❀

https://g.co/kgs/tJtP7t