Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Driven by Fear

How many of our daily decisions are driven by fear? In my reading tonight, this verse stood out to me:

Ezra 8:22-23 - For I was ashamed to ask the king for a band of soldiers and horsemen to protect us against the enemy on our way, since we had told the king, “The hand of our God is for good on all who seek him, and the power of his wrath is against all who forsake him.” 23 So we fasted and implored our God for this, and he listened to our entreaty.

To recap, Ezra had told the king that he and his men would go rebuild God's temple, and that in this process, the GOD of the universe would protect him against their enemies. Because of this testimony, Ezra was ashamed to ask the king for a protective guard on their dangerous journey. Instead, he fasted and prayed - asking God to protect them - why? So that GOD's name might be glorified in the eyes of this pagan king and his entire kingdom.

This brings me back to my initial question - how many of our decisions are motivated by fear? Have you heard anyone say that they’re voting for a particular candidate because they’re afraid of what will happen if the opposing candidate makes it into office? How about fear of allowing 'the tired, the poor, the huddled masses yearning to breathe free' to find refuge in a nation where many of us have plenty to share? (Skittles, anyone?) Not to mention the inherent and even, at times, unconscious fear, prejudice and mistrust of anyone who looks different than us that is tearing our nation apart one heartbreaking hashtag at a time.

What does this kind of attitude communicate to our neighbors about the power of our God? How does it portray Him to the people we talk to every day?

Do we actually still serve the same GOD who closed the lion's mouths? The same GOD who protected Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego from the fiery furnace? Where do we find our protection, our refuge?

In the midst of a culture that is saturated with fear, stress, and anxiety, a firm faith and quiet peace despite the incredibly uncertain circumstances that surround us WILL stand out. God will be glorified in the eyes of the whole kingdom when we choose to fast and pray and then step out in faith to follow HIM rather than trusting in 'all the king's horses and all the king's men' to make America great again.

Friday, February 12, 2016

Kidlet Hilarity #23

This issue of Kidlet Hilarity is 90% brought to you by David - ha! He is quite the hilarious guy, and very aptly named (David Isaac means beloved laughter.) Enjoy!

David thought we were going to skip reading the Bible, so he said, "But then we will shrink, shrink, shrink!" Another day, he yelled at Daddy, "Do you want to shrink, shrink, shrink?" because he thought we were skipping our prayer time! I guess those lessons from our Preschool Choir songs did sink in after all!

David pronounces the words 'trees' and 'cheese' exactly the same. The other day, I repeated or figured out something he said, and he responded, "Ebaskaly." I finally figured out he was saying 'exactly'! :)

David went to sit in his Daddy's lap, "because I've known you a long time, Mama."

Zachary, talking about Doritos- "I can't believe they can make corn into something that tastes this good."

David loves to talk about "When I was widdle" and "When I was two year olds."

Zachary: "I'm so impatient for my birthday to be here. I want you to order it on Amazon Prime."
Natalie: "Okay, then it will be here in two days."

David was pretending to work for the king, making him mud pies, "so I won't get put in the 'Dungeon of De'pair'".

David: "Your pizza looks so handsome, Mommy."

David singing the blessing at mealtime: "Almond, Almond" instead of "Amen, Amen." He actually thought the blessing ended with the word Almond for some reason! :)

After the almond incident, Zachary prayed and said, "God, thank You that David is so funny."

David calls lasagna 'wawanza'.

David: "Zachary, close your ears with your hands like this" as he puts his hands on his ears. Apparently he didn't want Zachary to hear what he had to say. :)

Natalie: "I can't decide between being a lead singer when I grow up, or an artist."
David: "I can't decide between being an artist, a zombie, or a policeman. Or an artist who draws zombies."

David calls Publix 'Pugwix'.

David gets really excited when he's the only one of the kids that's obeying, and he dances and sings this little song that goes, "I'm obeying right now! I'm obeying right now!"

Zachary saw that our cashier at our Aldi store had a name tag that said Emmanuel, so Zachary asked him if he was Emmanuel Sanders (a Broncos player). He was sweet about it, laughed and said, "No, wouldn't that be nice?" :)

David likes to say, "No way, Hay-zay!" when he's asked to do something.

One night David and I were playing some kind of game against Natalie, Zachary and Daddy, Something happened where Natalie got a minor injury, and so I was hugging her. David objected, saying, "Don't pat her! Her is on the other team!"

One day when someone other than David was having a moment (or throwing a fit), David looked right at them and announced, "Satan is happy now." :)

David, referring to my favorite pajama pants that Joel gave me for Christmas, "Mama, why you wear dese pants every night? They need to be washed!" :) You can tell he's heard that about his clothes, can't you?

A couple of weeks ago, the kids and I went on a walk around the neighborhood - Natalie and David were riding their bikes, and Zachary chose to walk and talk with me, so we were walking behind the two of them. Natalie and David crested a big hill in front of us, and as Zachary and I approached the top of the hill, David came back up to us, with tears in his eyes. "Oh, David, did you get hurt?" I asked him. "No," he cried, "but Natalie did. She fell down, and someone is taking her!" Poor Natalie had fallen over on her bike, and a sweet neighbor who owns a golf cart and a kind teenage neighbor had helped her up and taken her to give her a ride home, and poor David thought she was being kidnapped - he was so upset!! She ended up with a scraped up hand and a sore wrist, but she was fine! The fact of how concerned David was just brought me to tears, though - he was such a good helper to come back and tell us! :)