Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Total Eclipse


(image from http://taostyle.net/2017/08/total-eclipse-sun/)

Yesterday the area where we live experienced a total solar eclipse.  While my husband saw the eclipse on a break from work in town, the kids and I were home here in the countryside and got to enjoy this beautiful phenomenon right in our own backyard.  We were in awe of this beautiful and rare (to us, at least) natural event!

As the sun dimmed, the temperature dropped several degrees.  Then for that short time when the moon completely covered the sun, we experienced what looked like sunset/sunrise colors in the sky all around the horizon in every direction!

Image result for dusk photo public domain
 (this is a photo of a regular twilight, but it did look like that, in every direction at the horizon)

One thing that was amazing to me was how the animals reacted to the eclipse.  In that balmy, deep twilight the crickets began chirping and other night insects began to sing, too!  As the sun's rays peeked out again, it was just like morning, because the rooster began to crow from our neighbor's coop!  I saw that nature works like clockwork, the animals responding to cues in nature such as temperature and brightness/darkness.  Right on cue, when sunset or sunrise cues came, the animals reacted as they always had.

I feel that's how the message of grace is for me.  My spirit responds to it just like clockwork.  Whenever I hear the truth of God's unconditional love and acceptance, the assurance that He's carrying us to a perfect happy ending, my spirit just leaps up within me and does the happy dance!  It's like my inner person can clearly see God's loving face and my heart just melts in joy and peace!  I guess God's love sets my inner cricket to chirping every single time..this message never gets old.  It's just as special, as fresh and new, as invigorating as the first time I ever heard it.

Thank God for such love that refreshes our hearts every time!

Monday, July 24, 2017

Life in the Past Year..Full of Ups and Downs

I know I haven't been actively posting on this blog for a while.

So many things have happened in my life, with our oldest daughter starting college, my husband switching to a new job, watching my mother deteriorate from dementia so that she no longer recognizes me, and the biggest upheaval of the past year - the passing into heaven of my beloved father, the best daddy in the world and one of the most special people one could ever meet.

So life has been surging on in its ups and downs this past year, and I just haven't been at a place of writing much.

But I want to extend my love and greetings to all and wish all a happy and joyous day in Him.  He certainly carries us through the ups and downs of life, doesn't He?  Without Him, I couldn't make it.  But thankfully, He is here and He is so wonderful.  Even when things are dark and we don't feel Him, He's still there.  I'm glad of that, especially since the world felt so dark and lonely and cold after I lost my dad.  God was there in the coldness.  I couldn't feel Him at all, but He was there and He got me through.

I see now that He is with us just as strongly in the dark and cold and lonely times as He is in the 'super-spiritual, receiving great revelations, feeling spiritual joy and strength' times.  It doesn't matter what our perception is or what our feelings are; He's still there holding us.  He's the constant. He never changes.  He never lets go.  He never has and He never will.

So I greet everyone and send out blessings and wish you all the best and hope your days are good and full of joy and peace.  Isn't it a relief that grace is true, that unconditional love is true, that God is truly good?  I'm so thankful that all is well deep down, no matter what's happening on the surface of life.  And I'm so thankful this life story is going to end well.  That gives me a lot of peace.  Everything is going to be okay, for He's involved in the writing of our story and He is the God of happy endings!


Thoughts of Grace After All These Years

It's been years since I first heard about God's grace, acceptance and unconditional love.

Yet I find that reading about that grace and love still makes me cry.

I guess it shows how powerful this message is, how true it is, and how much my heart needs it.

Here are some grace thoughts that have been going through my heart and mind and touching me in deep ways lately:

God made us, not so we could give Him glory, but so He could give us love.

Even when everything is all wrong, deep down everything is all right.

Even if I'm all wrong, I'm all right to God.

God always loved us and always shall love us.

We were always His adorable little innocent ones.

God can't see any sin in us!  We're perfect darlings to Him.

My true nature, that I've always had, is good and loving.  I take after my Dad, Mr. Love Himself!

He loved us so much He became a human, so He could share every part of our life with us!

I"m part of God, in God, held by God, and therefore always safe.

The universe is a good place because a good God is at its heart.  He made it, He sustains it, and He will bring it to perfect fulfillment.

At the heart of it all, everything is ok and always will be okay.

God always wears a smile, always lends a helping hand, always gives an encouraging word.

God wanted to show us He was non-threatening, so He came as a tiny baby to show us we have nothing to fear from Him.

God is vulnerable and sweet,  gentle and friendly.

God has no wrath.  He is perfect peace, the opposite of wrath.

God does not punish.  God heals and restores.

God does not destroy.  God is the author of life, not death!

God never demanded our perfection.  God has no demands at all of me.  God simply accepts and embraces me as I am. 

I am totally and fully accepted.  I am accepted with all my shadows.  I am accepted without any possibility of being rejected.  I am accepted now and forevermore.

He is fine with me as I am! I'm perfect to God.

God is delighted with His child - me!  He sings over me and loves to just look at me.  I'm His pride and joy!

I am a beautiful and awesome person.  God is pleased with me right now, as I am in this moment.

God says, "What sin?  I see no sin in you.  You are beautiful and there is no flaw in you."

At the heart of it all is a grace that embraces us, carries us and isn't going to let us go.

There is a lightness to God's love and grace.  He makes our inner heart light.  It's the lightness and joy of heaven and we'll enjoy it forever!








Saturday, June 25, 2016

What Follows AFTER

After night, day
After winter, spring
After rain, sun
After dormancy, life

After cold, warmth
After ebbtide, high
After waning moon, full
After drought, replenishing

After bitterness, hope
After ruin, mercy
After agony, compassion
After anger, release

After fear, security
After failure, grace
After turmoil, peace
After sorrow, joy

After endings, beginnings
After death, life
After time, eternity
After everything, LOVE!

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Innocent Babes

We're innocent babes in His arms!

Even though humans have been confused since eating from that ole' law (knowledge of good and evil) tree, the image of God hasn't been erased from us, and there is still that core of good humanity, worthy of dignity and love, deep within us, that 'something' within us that longs for God and longs to do good, 'delights in His will,' loves beauty and truth and naturally reaches for light, knows instinctively that we are meant to love and seeks love, seeks to find kindness and seeks to be kind, seeks understanding and seeks to be understanding, seeks good and seeks to do good.  An innocence deep down within us all.  I just can't look at the face of a newborn baby and think that baby is bad or even half bad - I can only feel delight, rapture and joy at the miracle of this newborn human, innocent and sweet!  When I look in the face of a newborn baby, all I can see is innocence, beauty, purity and goodness. 

I know our minds became confused and we were 'separated and enemies of God in our minds, doing wicked works,' but how wonderful that that was only in our minds!  We were never really separated, never really enemies of God - our minds thought so through law thinking, dividing things into good and bad, seeing ourselves as bad and thus separate from the good God - but I don't believe that we really ever changed from being those basically good, decent humans that God made, one with Him deep down, for 'He is the spirit in man' as Job says - He's our core, it's His Spirit that gives us life and is in us at the core of our humanity!  His Spirit, His good nature, His image, His imprint, His DNA of Love within us all! 

Isn't it wonderful that Christ is revealed IN us, that the Spirit bubbles up and overflows from deep WITHIN us!  Jesus didn't come to put good into us but to let it out!  There was goodness inside us all along!  It gets me excited to think I have always been good deep down, not evil, bad, dirty or sinful in nature!  It's only that my mind didn't see this, lies poisoned me and took me captive to vain, law thinking and evil thoughts about myself, seeing myself as bad, and others too.  This caused all kinds of problems and made me act so contrary to my true nature of goodness and love as God's creation.  But Jesus came to be the truth that sets us free, sets our minds free!!!

He freed our minds to see our goodness, see that we have the imprint of God within, setting us free to really live as the children of God, the Spiritual beings we always were.  Our latent goodness, our latent "God-ness" can pour forth, and out of our innermost being flows rivers of living water (the Holy, Pure, Good Spirit that's always been there inside) because we're not seeing ourselves as bad anymore but embracing our true identity, believing the good news, seeing ourselves as sons and daughters of the Father of Love who have that same character of Love!

I believe the image of God is still in each person and is worthy of respect and affirmation.  I believe that image is still there underneath the misunderstandings and confusions, law-thinking and law-breakings.  We're still His creation, all of us are his offspring/children, as Paul said.  Those who believe have had the blinders of the mind removed, have had clarity restored, and can really enjoy that relationship with Papa that is the birthright of all His human babies.  But I do believe every person is good, just like their Dad, deep down where it counts, as seen in the innocence of babies and children.

This has really been wonderful to ponder and think about!  I am still learning about all this and may be wrong about things, but these are my thoughts right now.  I really believe we are all 'good eggs' and Jesus came to redeem that goodness in men - to bring it to light.

He redeemed us!  I read a great definition of redemption recently.  It basically said that when something loses its sense of value and that sense of value is restored, it's been redeemed. I think that is what He did for us - He restored to us our sense of value, showed us we're worthy, valuable, good. 

He justified us.  What does that mean?  To justify means to prove somebody is in the right.  To prove their innocence.  To prove they are 'not guilty.'  To uphold and demonstrate and show forth their righteousness, that they are a just person.  A good person!  That they didn't do wrong!  Christ came to vindicate and justify us in our own eyes - to prove us righteous and good.  Humanity put itself on trial through our 'law thinking' and God gave the verdict, proclaimed us good and 'just' by the cross, for even when we did our worst and killed His Son, Jesus was saying 'they don't know what they are doing' and calling us innocent deep down! Wow!

He justified the ungodly by proving us worth dying for and still good at the core, still God's offspring with a right to the palace!  Satan had captured our minds and made us believe lies about ourselves, that we were bad and dirty and separate from good/God.  Jesus came and showed us the truth of our belovedness and goodness and belonging in God's family, His truth setting our captive minds free!  We thought we were orphans, He showed us we were sons and daughters of the one true God, His very own creation, in His good image of Love!  He's always seen us as His good little ones, it was our eyes that needed to be opened to this. 

The enemy could never change who we were deep in our core humanity. 

He could never change our paternity! 

We have always been in the image of our Father.

And that image has always been 'very good!'

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Good Little Ones

Everyone is a "good egg" -

Our basic humanity is good, made in His good image.

Everybody wants to be loved and to love.

Deep down our motives are pure and innocent.

We're all sweet, open, good little children inside.

We're lovely little ones, the ones we were as toddlers!

We're little bitty children, needing love and being naturally open and loving.

We look to others and listen to many other voices and outside experiences to find out if we have worth and are okay and safe..but there is ONE VOICE that outweighs them all, and when we hear that Voice saying we're okay, even wonderful, and that everything is okay, even wonderful, and that everything will work out okay, even wonderful, then we really start to relax and believe it.  We are grounded, we are centered, we are anchored, for we truly are experiencing Reality - Real Life - His Life in us!

Friday, June 10, 2016

Grace - Strongest When We Are at Our Weakest!

Grace comes into its own in weakness, isn't that wonderful?  It works the MOST magically and powerfully when we are bitter, angry, in turmoil, doubting, at our lowest and worst.   It always, ALWAYS flows in us and works its magic most noticeably, strongly and wonderfully JUST at those times when we are 'awfullest' - to others and to ourselves!

Grace is sufficient at all times for us..for His power is made perfect - comes into its own - in weakness..our weakness, failures, bravado, deceitfulness, cowardice, rage and angst!

And we don't have to get rid of confusions, doubts, or 'constrictions' in order to receive grace or get it to flow to us or through us...that's a condition, and there are NO conditions on grace!  Grace itself gets rids of any barriers or constrictions in our thinking or beliefs WITHOUT our help!

Grace is always inside us, flowing in and through and upon and over and out of us..we don't have to do anything to get grace to come or work in our lives..grace ALWAYS comes to us, is ALWAYS with us, and is ALWAYS working in our lives, and Grace ALWAYS wins out in the end over any angst, fear, bitterness, failure, defeat, addiction, pain or turmoil.

Grace us always 'flowing like a river,' always flowing in, to and through us!

Love is with us, Love is living in us..

Love always wins, Grace always prevails!

Everything belongs..

"For from Him, and through Him, and to Him are ALL things.
To Him be the glory forevermore!"        Rom. 11:36

I have been thinking, how does this creation, this big world of humanity and everything else, look to God, from His perspective?

He doesn't see anything as 'away' from Him, since He is everywhere present and intimate with every atom, every photon, every pain, every joy, every moment, every thought, for every person! 

He doesn't see just the present; the past, present and future all exist in His NOW.  So He doesn't see us in process, unfinished, messed up, confused, or however else we may feel.  He sees us complete and whole, seeing the end from the beginning.  Really, for Him, have we every been anything BUT complete, whole, beautiful, pure and sweet?  :)

Having such understanding of all our past experience and of all our thought processes today and of all the future fulfillment that awaits us, how could He see us as unacceptable, as 'wrong' or evil?  We see sin, right and wrong, good and bad - God only sees His little children who don't know any better, who don't understand how much He loves them yet, who 'don't know what they are doing,' as Christ said on the cross

He is the great LOVE that embraces, undergirds, generates, supports and is the utter end of ALL things, so nothing going on in our lives is a surprise to Him, unacceptable to Him, or repugnant to Him.  We are never repugnant to God!  Nothing in us is unacceptable, nothing we do or say is 'not allowed' - He is big enough, understanding enough, strong enough, loving enough, to hold all our confusions, mistakes, doubts, fears, stumblings, and frailties.  He remembers what we are.  He made us out of Himself.  His own Spirit supports our life.  He is moving us to the perfect happy ending.  Nothing has ever been in doubt.  We have been safe all along, only we didn't know it! 

Thinking like this, I realize I have never been separated from Him, never been alone, never really been 'lost' - not to Him, for hasn't HE been with me, known where I was, breathed every breath of mine within me, all along?!   I was never alienated from Him -  only in my mind, as Col. 1 tells me!  He reveals Christ WITHIN us, not outside trying to get in..we see this and the Spirit flows forth from WITHIN our innermost being, where He has been all along!

Everything belongs.  Nothing is actually separated from Him.  Nothing is cast away or rejected.  No part of us is cast away or rejected!

We can never do or say or think anything that will take us out of Him, out of His love, out of His grace.

For there IS no place outside of Him, outside of His love, outside of His grace!

He is so big that He contains it all, so loving that in Him everything fits together and belongs, through the perfection of Christ. 

He is all, and is in all.  In Him we live and move and have our being.  The oneness of God always contains, embraces, holds, connects, shelters, supports, accepts all things!

We are floating in the ocean of HIM!  We are wrapped up in His eternal arms!  We are boats built by Him, sailing down His river, to His sea, blown by His breeze, coming to the ultimate harbor that is HIM!  We are safely enveloped in His loving presence and acceptance, that delicious, refreshing, unconditional loving acceptance that is called GRACE!


Everything belongs.

  Nothing is unacceptable,

    'not allowed,' out of sync

      or wrong or 'bad.'

Everything belongs.

   Everything and everyone is home,

      so nothing is lost or 'away.'

Everything is part of Him,

   so nothing is separated
 
      or needing to 'get' to Him.

Noone is a 'them' -

   We are all His offspring.

       He is with us all, for us all,

          and reveals Himself IN us all!

Everyone is His offspring, His child..

Everyone is beloved, accepted..

Everyone is in His presence, home..

Thank you Jesus for coming to set us free in our minds, free from the lies we believed of separation, judgment, and fear.  Thank You for vindicating us by the cross, thank You for redeeming us - restoring our sense of worth and value and goodness!  Thank You for calling us innocents, for showing us we are all 'good eggs' after all!  Thank You for not being ashamed to call us your brothers (and sisters)!  Thank You for showing us we belong and need not be ashamed!  Thank You for letting  us know You are here within us and always have been, our dearest friend, closer than a brother, closer than a heartbeat.   Thank You for assuring us that everything is okay, and everything will ultimately be okay!  Now we can rest against our Father's bosom again, without any fear of harm.  For we KNOW He is love and nothing else!  Love does no harm..Our Papa is good to ALL and His compassion is over ALL His creation!  Wow, we are so safe in those arms of love! Thank You for showing us that, for bringing grace to light through the good news!  Thank You so much for GRACE!

Sunday, March 13, 2016

Aslan's Country, the Really Real World!

C.S. Lewis certainly has a wonderful way of describing the joys of heaven..here are some of my thoughts after enjoying his descriptions of 'Aslan's Country' in The Last Battle:

The time bound self is just that, so time bound, just rising and falling like a wave on the sea, the sea always still in the depth, always the same no matter what momentary surface wave appears or disappears in so short a time..we are so simply all of us part of God the Timeless one (Eternal)! 

The 'self' that thinks and breathes and acts and feels here on earth is like a little shadow/doppelganger of the Real Self that always IS underneath in the infinite expanses of God/the Spiritual Realm!  The temporal self is about as solid as a mirror's image is compared to the real scene..whatever we 'are' here is but a faint echo of the True Us existing always outside of time in 'Aslan's country' - the Really Real World where we are all enjoying unity with one another and with God outside of time and space!  Wow! 

Time and space will eventually all fold inward and find themselves freed outward into the infinity of Love, of God, of the Really Real!  And all that we had 'lost' in this world  - whether friends, loved ones, homes, childhood joys, innocence, happiness, or love - will be found to have always been safely there at home; we will find ourselves to have always been there safely at home, in His garden, on His lap, actually part of Him as ever we were, are and shall be!
 
What is there to be really, ultimately afraid of when that is our beginning, our present upholding/foundation, and our ultimate guaranteed end (guaranteed because there all time exists in the Now of eternity/God and thus the end has already come and just IS)!

Friday, January 22, 2016

God Loves us with ALL His heart, soul, mind and strength..He loves us as Himself..Wow!

We are receiving some lovely snowfall today and so I thought I might include a beautiful snow scene with today's ponderings (we ended up with 6 lovely inches of snow, almost a 'blizzard' here in the balmy southern US!):

Sun Through Winter Tree Branches - Free High Resolution Photo












A Quote from Richard Rohr:

The God Jesus incarnates and embodies is not a distant God that must be placated. Jesus' God is not sitting on some throne demanding worship and throwing down thunderbolts like Zeus. Jesus never said, "Worship me"; he said, "Follow me." He asks us to imitate him in his own journey of full incarnation. To do so, he gives us the two great commandments: 1) Love God with your whole heart, soul, mind, and strength and 2) Love your neighbor as yourself (Mark 12:28-31, Luke 10:25-28). In the parable of the Good Samaritan, Jesus shows us that our "neighbor" even includes our "enemy" (Luke 10:29-37)."

My thoughts:

I just noticed or felt something as I read this..God invites us to love with unconditional, perfect love..THAT is exactly how HE loves..how HE loves US!  God loves us with His whole heart, His whole soul, with all of His mind, and with all of His strength..with all that He is..He loves us as Himself..He loves those who call themselves His enemies, He blesses them/us, and does good to those who hate Him and spitefully use Him (misunderstanding His true nature).  
Wow!   He loves the hurting and wounded people, loves the littlest and the least, loves the ones others have forgotten, even loves the one we try most to forget and deny - our own needy, helpless, hurting and hurtful selves!  He loves the part of us that is wounded and little and lashing out in fear and bitterness, the one who has forgotten how to love, forgotten what it ever felt like to be loved..that is the one He loves, the one we think is our 'true inner selfish self'...when in reality it is only the hurting and confused and tormented mind, not our real true spirit self at all..that real and true spirit self is part of God, one with God, and therefore always perfectly lovable and loving!  
We love with an infinite, unconditional love because that is Who we came from and are part of, that is how we were always loved and always will be loved, that is the swaddling blanket we are eternally wrapped in, that is the core of our existence, that is the hub of our universe and the center upon which all of time and eternity is grounded..that LOVE is WHO WE ARE, Who we came from, and Where we are going to be forever! 

God loves us with all He is..HE loves the part of ourselves that we may call 'enemy,' the part we are ashamed of and may despise or try to hide..He loves all of us, every part of us, in sunshine and shadow, waking or sleeping, rising or falling, living or dying..HE loves us and holds us and that is the ground of our whole lives.   
The center.  
The truth that makes everything okay somehow.  
We are loved like a prodigal who is thrown a party instead of being punished, loved like a happy child swung round and round by a wonderful, doting Dad, loved like a little toddler who is safe in His Papa's arms, loved like a baby nestled against its mother's warm bosom, loved like someone who has just arrived safely home after a long journey and finds everything just as it was remembered..the longing is over, the search is ended, we were home all along, safe all along, in His arms all along.  Was there ever any other place we could actually be?  No, never.  HE is everywhere we go.  HE went with us into every dark alley.  HE was always there inside us.  HE carried us all along.  HE is the Home we were looking for all along, and all along we were at Home in Him..SAFE.  BELOVED.  HOME!

I love this Loving Papa who never lets go, who loves with such an unconditional and gracious love!

Thursday, December 24, 2015

HE (Love) is The Heart of All Things - Good Tidings of Great Comfort and Joy to All!

Isn't it wonderful how God has revealed His Son IN us!  Paul talked about that, how God revealed His Son in him..what a wonderful and blessed mystery the good news is, the good news of great joy to all people, the good news of God with us, of Christ in us!  What a hope (expectation) of glory that is, glory that breaks forth like dawn right now and keeps on growing brighter and brighter to an eternal daylight that shines for ever and ever, in us!  That wholeness that is God has always been within us, and it's glowing forth, lighting the whole universe as it goes forth!  That beautiful joy and peace and love that is God, His very Spirit of grace and love, has always been in us as our very spirit, and He's pouring forth in rivers of living water from within us, watering the whole parched world as He goes!  What a beautiful thing it is to find God in us and have the ultimate peace and joy that is HIM dwelling right inside us at all times, carrying us along, being our ultimate reality, a Wholeness within us all, upholding all, infusing all!

I was reading a devotional this morning by Richard Rohr, and he wrote about about the reality of "a fundamental wholeness at the heart of everything."

Wonderfully, I dreamed about this last night! In my dream I was going over this idea, that there is wholeness and joy and peace (GOD!) at the heart of all things.  In my dream I was pondering how we can simply be honest about how we are feeling and thinking, don't have to 'do' anything or 'become' anything but can simply BE, and that God shows us the joy at the heart of all things, for He is the center, and we are living life from the Center even as our minds are unaware of it for a time. We come to the bottom of our selves by simply being ourselves in stillness, come to the bottom of our life, of our pain, of our confusion, of our thoughts and feelings, and we find God there, Life there, Joy there, Love there, beneath the surface, at the bottom of all things, for He is our core, and everything is existing upon the foundation that is Him/Love/Joy!  In the quiet at the depth of our souls, God IS!  There at the depths where all is still, where all simply IS, there is a Presence, a Loving Presence wrapping us in peace and acceptance, and we are part of that Presence - we find that Presence that is Love Himself, God Himself, God in us, Emmanuel truly in us, as us, as our core!  

And seeing this, experiencing this Love in the depths of us, our minds and senses experience Life from the Center, experience the heart of all things, the wholeness and joy and peace and love that has always been there and always will be.  For underneath are the everlasting arms - the whole world, all our lives, existence itself, each of us personally, has always been in His hands, literally in Him, and actually grows forth from Him and is part of Him, as branches grow on the vibrant grapevine!  We have always been one with that stillness and part of that stillness.  Our minds just weren't always aware of the fact that we are part of God, thus we are love beings, we are solidly built on wholeness and made of peace, all is well with us and all is complete!  

This shows the ultimate acceptance too, for since we are Love Himself at the core, part of Love and beings of Love, we have perfect love towards our confused minds and ALL our confused thoughts, feelings and actions have always been and always are accepted.  We are thus purveyors of and enjoyers of the deepest acceptance!  Our Spirits ARE 'Accepting Love' and our minds and bodies are always received that Accepting Love!  Finding out we are really part of Love Himself and therefore complete and perfect, whole and holy, peaceful and joyful, accepting and loving, our minds experience the deepest acceptance there is!  We know in our minds that God accepts us, that we are actually perfect accepting love ourselves, and that we accept ourselves!  We are part of and also experience the deepest love - and in it, the deepest peace, the deepest wholeness, the deepest security, the deepest acceptance!

We have always been in this, have always actually BEEN this at the core, this Peace and Love that is God.  We can't get out of Him and have never been away from Him.  He shows us this.   We experience it.  Plunged beneath the surface by the swirls of life, we experience simply BEING and it's His Being that we find we are experiencing and are part of!  We don't have to do anything to get to God, we just ARE part of Him.  Wow!  We are simply being ourselves at all times, and lo and behold, that is God's being Himself in us!  We can never stop being ourselves, can never stop being at all, and..that's God!  HE is the heart of us, our core, our deepest self, our very being!  We are being God in this human form at every moment!  We have always been God in a body, that's what humans are!  Made in His image, branches on the vine of God..His Spirit animating flesh matter as a human!  

HE has always been our heart, and is the heart of ALL things, ALL history, ALL existence, ALL life, ALL reality, ALL comes from Him, exists in Him, and returns to Him.  

The Spirit returns to God who gave it!  Everything rises and must converge!  All streams flow to the sea..and even more fundamentally, all raindrops from the sky that are now in rivulets return to their source as the water flowing into the sea evaporates into the clouds!  We are cloud people.  We are sea people.  We are part of Him like drops in the ocean.  The ripples always calm down to stillness.  The sea is always calm at the depths.  Still and quiet and serene.  That is who we are!  We are the stillness at the bottom of the sea, the cloud that floats through the sky, the light that shines in the darkness no matter what! 

 Just by being, by doing nothing, just simply being, we discover that joy is at the heart of all things, that everything is perfect, that we are safe, that we are loved, that all is accepted, that we are whole, that God is Love and is the deepest part of us!  

Peace is the eternal pillow upon which all human existence rests.  It is the everflowing stream within, an infinite and bottomless spring that never dries up, the fountain from which we ourselves spring and also draw our life from.  It is the solid, strong, fundamental basic material we are made of, the deepest part of us that makes us WHO we ARE.  

Peace is our center.  God is our center.  And all is well!  It always has been and always will be, and just by simply being, we experience the peace at the heart of all things, the peace we are part of, the Peaceful One who is our core, the Peace we are!

Peace to you all this Christmas, tidings of comfort and joy knowing that HE and His Love are at the heart of all things!  Emmanuel, God with us, Love with and in us, the foundation stone upon which all of us are built..Christ Himself showing us in the ultimate way that Love is at the core, that we are accepted, that we are held, that we are whole, that we are secure...that 'God is in us, God is for us, God is with us, Emmanuel!' 

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Oneness, Yet Twoness - the Beautiful Mystery of Our Union With God

Wonderful to think of being one with God yet still unique persons who can have relationship with God..the same substance as God and yet children of God found in our Father always..from Him and through Him and to Him are all things..we exist in Him and are part of Him..our whole existence is wrapped up in Him, our beings contained by and one in substance with Him..what a safe life!  What a wonder to know we're always at home and are so connected with Him and so much a part of Him that there is no difference between us in substance and nature!  Wow!  God is my nature, I have the mind of Christ, we are His body..wow!  Oneness and all the safety and joy that entails..and yet Twoness, all the joys of a real relationship of two beings! Two united as one, One with offspring growing forth from Him and so relating as Two!  Like branches on the Vine, Children in the Womb, Drops in the Ocean!  Operating as two in some way, yet One within, where we are ONE SPIRIT!  One, not two!

I love this quote from a Richard Rohr devotional that celebrates our connectedness with God:

"Dame Julian of Norwich (c. 1342-1416) has this deep sense of the organic union between the soul and God. Hers is still an optimistic worldview. In Chapter 54 of Revelations of Divine Love, Julian writes, "So greatly ought we to rejoice that God dwells within us, and more greatly ought we to rejoice that our soul dwells in God. . . . In fact I saw no difference between God and my substance. [Wow!] But as it were we were all one. And still my understanding accepted that our substance is in God." That is to say, God is God, and our substance is a creature in that God. This is why she's still considered orthodox. Julian is fascinated with that absolute unity, and yet she maintains the I-Thou relationship of the two. [3] We are one and not two, and yet we are two and not one! Think about that."  (Richard Rohr)

We see this oneness and just know it's true, our natural state of being, our "indigenous nature," as Rohr says, as we "pray from within," that is, from the Spirit!!  Seeing with our true Spirit eyes, we see we are part of Him and can't be separated..that would be like trying to separate our DNA from "us"..it is just part of our makeup and can't be separated out..wow!  We are part of God, He is our very substance, we are made of Him...we came forth from Him and return to Him, exist in Him as part of Him always.  We are found in God and in God alone can we be found.  Where can we go from His presence?  Nowhere, for He is in us, as us!  He is the deepest part of us, making us who we are! 

And yet in all the oneness there is a distinct set of beings who are in relationship!  We look out from His eyes yet look through our eyes, whether blue or brown or hazel green..we feel with His heart yet it's our heart that beats within our chest, in calm beats or rapid thumps!  We speak from the Spirit within who prays in and through and for us, yet it is our words that go to the Father's ears!  We are one with Him yet we can relate to Him, talk to Him and hear His response..we are one with Love and ARE Love in the deepest sense, yet we can still BE loved, feel His love for us and respond back in love to Him!   

Isn't it wonderful how we are in union with Him, isn't it wonderful, this mystery of being, of just being a human, a body somehow in union with God, His Spirit in our flesh and bones!  And what a Grace Moment when God reveals Christ in us - IN US!  Not outside us, wanting to get in, but inside, wanting us to just let Him on out!  Haha!  Isn't it wonderful?  He was there all along, we just needed to see.  Faith is simply the seeing of this reality with our Spirit eyes. 

What a wonderful thing this oneness with God really is!!

Monday, December 14, 2015

God Carries Us

God carries us!

God carries me!  

God carries you!

That's the message of grace to my ears..that whatever you do or have done, wherever you go or have been, whoever you are or have become, it doesn't matter, because no matter what, God carries you..

God carries you along..He carries you in sickness and in pain..He carries you in hurt and confusion..He carries you in doubt and anxiety..He carries you in terror and loneliness..He carries you in rage and bitterness..

No matter what, you are never too 'bad' for Him..He carries you no matter what you do or think or believe!

He carries you through it all..He carries you in want and need..He carries you in happiness and in calamity, in peace and in turmoil..in good times and bad..He carries you, takes care of you, won't drop you..He continues working out His very good love plan, no matter how rotten or crappy you act sometimes..no matter whether you talk to Him or turn your back on Him, no matter whether you are acting like a saint or royally messing up..

No matter what, He's got you, He's carrying you, He's taking care of everything, He won't let go of you!

No matter what, He's carrying you..that means the destination is assured..you will arrive safely home no matter what (after all, grace a says you're already there inside, in spirit, and in fact you never left)!  Grace says God carries you, through all of life, through all the trials, through all the suffering, through all the tears, through all the joys and sorrows, through it all, God carries you, and He won't let you down, won't leave, won't desert or abandon you..

He carries you and He will get you through anything, He will make it all work out right in the end, He will bring you to a happy ending, for sure, guaranteed, easy-peasy, without a doubt..

God carries you..He has started your life, He maintains and moves along your life, He will bring your life right where He wants it to go, to a good end..a happy ending!  

You never did have to carry yourself or your life..this life was never 'all up to you,' was never in your hands to 'make or break.'  That's law, anyways, and HE has always been Grace!  He has always had your life in His hand, always had the end safely wrapped up from the beginning. You could never have messed this up!  You have never been in any real danger.  You have always been SAFE in His arms.  This God has been our Home for all eternity, from all eternity TO all eternity!  From everlasting to everlasting He is our God, the God who carries us, who daily bears our burdens, who believes all good things about us, who never lets us down, who is faithful and true even if we are not, who never fails even when we fail!  

So what if we fail!  When we fall, we fall right into His strong arms, for underneath us are the everlasting arms, holding us up no matter what!  It's like falling on an escalator - whether you stand or fall, you still keep on going up, up, up!  It was never up to us to fail or succeed, or even believe or doubt - it was always up to God, who shows mercy, compassion, heartfelt love and kindness that never ends but is new every morning, surer than sunrise!  It was always all about Him, and HE never quits, never gives in, never fails..He is the Love that lasts forever, goes on without end!  If it were up to us, things would be in doubt..but since it is up to God, it's DONE!  Love never fails!  Love is always there to catch us, hold us, bring us through anything..Love always will always carry us through!

Mr. Love ALWAYS carried you, and He ALWAYS WILL!

Papa carries us, no matter what!  That is real security..that is true Grace!

Thursday, December 10, 2015

God's Word of Grace to Us

God's beautiful word of Grace to us, otherwise known as the gospel, opens our eyes to the truth of Christ in us..what relief floods our soul as we find that we already have what we were seeking - God, relationship with God, nearness to God, union with God, safety, eternal security, love and acceptance, a Home, belonging, peace and joy, good will from God to us!!  We are already Home inside, already safe, already His very own dear child..already connected, delighted in, embraced, cherished, taken care of, free, okay..everything is okay, all is well, all is eternally WELL for us!  

That is the good news of the gospel!  That is the best news in the universe!  That is the truth of the ages!  

We are in God, His children, He is in us, and nothing can change that!  Christ came to prove that even our worst act - murdering God's Son - cannot take us from God's heart or take Him from our lives!  He came to prove that even when we were doing our worst deed of killing God's Son, God was still calling us innocent!  Christ came to prove that we are innocent, righteous little children in God's eyes, His dear little babies, the delight of His heart!  

In His eyes we can literally 'do no wrong,' for He knows that the things we did (and still do) are out of fear and confusion and pain, and so Christ can honestly state, 'they don't know what they are doing.'  He remembers we are dust, knows our frame, is a good Parent..good parents don't hold it against their babies when they act out..good parents see beyond the tantrums to the hurting child that is acting out because of fear, hunger, loneliness, discomfort, need or pain.  

Our Papa is so good!  He always looked beyond our fault and saw our need of Love!  He always saw our heart was good, we were just scared and felt alone in the world.  He sent Jesus to draw us up in a big bear hug of Love!  And Jesus' cross did just that, drawing all men to Him, embracing the world with a Love Hug.  And He rose to give us such a fresh start, wiping away all the pain of our misdeeds, literally erasing the crime we committed!  (Murder?  What murder?  Where is the evidence of the crime? Where is the dead body?  It's gone!!)  Haha, He 'made death work backward,' as C. S. Lewis says, erased our sin, restored the feeling of innocence!  Isn't He wonderful!  He takes away the sting, the pain, the shame..cleanses our conscience!  We can stop beating ourselves up, because God knew that our hearts were good and that we were only acting out of pain and fear and confusion from religious lies we were told..He knew we were innocent inside and He proved it to us, justified us, vindicated us before the accuser, putting down every voice of accusation that might rise within us!  (Yes, His babies are really good, good-natured, sweet and loving, for they take after their good, loving Papa, of course!)  And He wiped away our 'crime' by erasing what we did, raising up the One we killed!  Daddy took care of everything, Daddy made it all better!  

Now we can go on with our Papa in this beautiful Edenic love existence, enjoying life as we walk on through it all with Him, just reveling in all the Love He pours out, able to talk to Him at any time, free to just BE ourselves in union with Him, enjoying a life of true peace and joy in His presence, knowing all is well and all WILL end up well!  Aaahh, deep sigh!  

We've been searching for this fountain of life and love all our lives, and we've finally found out it's been within us all along!  Christ in you, the hope of glory..the mystery revealed - we are just like Christ, we are little Christs, God in human bodies, flesh encasing Spirit, one Spirit within, part of God, having a true River of Life flowing out of us!!  Heaven was within us all along, part of us, and us part of it/Him..the wonderful place we've been longing for with that deep down ache inside..was God Himself, found to be within us all along, found to be our very core, our very nature, our very spirit/Spirit, the seed and root from which we sprang forth!  I carry God around wherever I go, for deep within me God carries me wherever He goes!  

What a wonderful God who is in us (and we in Him - beautiful union) and what a wonderful gospel!

Friday, December 4, 2015

Seen in a Garden...

Here's a lovely a photo taken by my daughter..recently we were walking in a local public garden and I saw this and asked her to take a picture of it..and just wanted to share it here with you all...what a wonderful grace thought to share with the world!


Sometimes it's hard to believe how wonderful, good, beautiful, sweet and amazing we are, isn't it?  It has been for me.  I had heard for so long what a sinful and terrible person I was, had so much shame and self-hatred going through my mind.  Yet all along God was whispering to me how beautiful and good and perfect I was and am!  I think of the cross and how it proved, not only His love for us, but also our innocence and perfection before Him.  He justified us not in His eyes so much as in our own eyes!  He vindicated us, proved our worth and purity and belovedness and righteousness!  The stamp of our innocence was the resurrection, verifying that we truly were and are righteous and holy in His sight, without flaw, blameless, perfect and beloved, His very own darling children in whom He is well-pleased!

What a relief to find out we are good, innocent little ones!

What a relief to find out we are wonderful and even magnificent!

What a relief to find out we are created in His holy image of LOVE!

May the amazing grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, the extravagant love of God, and the intimate friendship of the Holy Spirit be with all of you. 2 Co. 13:14