Friday, April 15, 2016

APPOINTED DAY


 I realize that, although I thought I was already doing my best to read the scriptures—usually a few tired verses or a column a night, a chapter, if I was particularly alert—the Lord knew that I was not doing the best I could. And he knew that I need the blessings that come from trying a little harder to grab onto the holy in life, to make meaning from the meaningless spaces of the day.
I grabbed this quote today from the “Segullah blog”. I have been trying to get back into the groove of things, a “new” routine because the old one doesn’t work anymore. One of my “old” routines was to read my scriptures at least twice a week and more if preparing a lesson for Sunday school. The Book of Mormon “whispers to me”, and it really does.

Today is my birthday, and this is the first time that the “novelty” of celebrating for an entire month like “the queen” has worn off. I must create a new routine or better, make this the last birthday I celebrate in the old way and instead donate my appointed day to serving others, to wishing others a “Happy Day” where there is none.  

ps: Happy Birthday to you, and you know who you are............

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Eulogy


PATRICK  W. GORDY
August 26 1957-March 23 2016

W. H. Auden


Stop all the clocks, cut off the telephone,
Prevent the dog from barking with a juicy bone,
Silence the pianos and with muffled drum
Bring out the coffin, let the mourners come.

Let aeroplanes circle moaning overhead
Scribbling on the sky the message He Is Dead,
Put crepe bows round the white necks of the public doves,
Let the traffic policemen wear black cotton gloves.

He was my North, my South, my East and West,
My working week and my Sunday rest,
My noon, my midnight, my talk, my song;
I thought that love would last for ever: I was wrong.

The stars are not wanted now: put out every one;
Pack up the moon and dismantle the sun;
Pour away the ocean and sweep up the wood.
For nothing now can ever come to any good.

Just thought I would mention that my husband and true eternal companion passed away 3 weeks ago. I am sharing this because we all "mourn with those who mourn". He had been progressively ill for the past 2 years from Heart Disease and all the "appendages" that come with it. But he was Valiant in his afflictions, and he tried to rally everyone around him to cheerfulness too. Although my heart is heavy, and tears are always close, the blessings, the gifts that he left me and all who loved him was one of Hope, and lightness of being and love and happiness. It was always hard to stay mad or sad around my husband because he radiated joy. I know that Heavenly Father loved him dearly, and I have the impression that in all of our wanting my husband to recover and get well and strong, the Father wanted it more than us , even in this life. I feel that in a crucial moment the Father laid out his future and asked him if he were strong enough to carry on, but even if he wasn't, it was ok. There would be rest.  He said Rest now my little one, my good and faithful servant. Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou has been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy Lord. Matt.25:21

Here is a couple that inspires hope in me:



When Sonia Vallabh was diagnosed five years ago with a rare, incurable disease the couple banded together to find a cure.....
"The miracle of my lifetime is that we met...and even if we find a cure ;that will always be the miracle." Sonia Vallabh 




Danny Boy: Mormon Tabernacle Choir

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

PONDERING: Exodus 33:19 Proclaim Goodess



This past Sunday we talked about the "Atonement" in Sunday School. So the title was a proclamation: O the Goodness of our God.  Just looking at this statement you might wonder where the Atonement fits in . I was listening to a talk today about the Mercy of God and the background scripture was this:
Exodus 33:18-19 18 Then Moses said, “Please, show me Your glory!”
19 And God said, “I will make all My goodness pass before you, and I will proclaim the Name of the Lord before you; for I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will show compassion (loving-kindness) on whom I will show compassion.”
This is such a cool scripture; in context Moses has asked the Lord Jehovah for one last opportunity to experience the presence of the Lord, in all of his glory. He beg's the Lord to "Show me your face, show me your glory".I can't imagine what that is like, or feels like. But the Lord did one better, he taught him about the future atonement of a Savior. So He gave Moses a "parade" of love, he literally preached a sermon about Himself, and proclaimed His own name and it's merits. All of his goodness passed before him. John Gill’s exposition of the Bible give a really great explanation

And he said, I will make all my goodness pass before thee,
&c.] Which is his glory; the glory of the Lord lies in his goodness, and that appears in the works of his hands, in the methods of his providence, especially in the distribution of his sovereign grace and mercy, and particularly in his pardoning grace and mercy, through the blood of Christ; for as it is "the glory" of a man "to pass over a transgression", ( Proverbs 19:11 ) much more it is the glory of God, of which this goodness is afterwards interpreted; and may be understood of Christ himself, who is the goodness of God itself, is not only good, but the Lord's good One, emphatically good; as he is called his holy One, so his good One; because all his goodness is laid up in him, is prevented and filled as Mediator, with the blessings of his goodness; all are proclaimed in him, displayed through him, and communicated by him; and he is that glorious Personage that Moses might be desirous of having a view of, and was favoured with; however, with a view of the divine goodness, as it is conspicuous in him, in what he is, and has done for his people; for God has shown forth the exceeding riches of his grace and goodness in him:

and I will proclaim the name of the Lord before thee:
his name and his nature, his perfections, and the glory of them, as displayed in Christ; or when he is about to pass, or while he is passing by, lest he should pass by unobserved, I will proclaim aloud and give thee notice that he is now passing by thee, whose name is Jehovah, and whose nature, glory, and goodness, are as follow:


and will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will show
mercy on whom I will show mercy:

signifying that notwithstanding the children of Israel had sinned against him in such a manner as they had, yet he should show favour, grace, and mercy to them, in pardoning their sins; and it should be distributed, not according to any merits of theirs, but according to his sovereign will and pleasure, and not to all, but to whomsoever he thought fit; and in this would be seen his glory: and so it is with respect to grace and mercy, as displayed in Christ to sinful men; it is not in proportion to their deserts, but according to the purpose and good will of God, and that not unto all, but unto some whom he has appointed, not unto wrath, but unto salvation by Jesus Christ, and which is to the glory of his grace; and the more enlarged view men have of this, the more clearly and fully does the goodness and glory of God pass before them.

Today is sing a long Wednesday. But you can sing and dance and proclaim the Goodness of God. This is an oldie but a goodie from Soul Pancake. It's about love and joy and happiness when we share it with one another.

Friday, February 26, 2016

HIGHER LOVE


Happy Friday everyone, hope you are having a good day, me too. I wanted to share this with you,My husband is in the hospital and he is really sick, but he is progressing at a faster rate than usual.

I am at work and as usual my mind is ticking off a laundry list of "to do", and then my mind will go into a panic because I am really concerned about my husband’s mental well being as he is healing. I know that he is upset because of a respiratory tube in place to help him breathe.  As I was going through some worst case scenarios in my mind, one of which I hold the ICU hostage until they take out the tube; I thought I heard something "Stop looking at your circumstances". Wow, I thought "What should I look at then?" And I realized that even though the circumstances are what we see, I/we need to look at the spiritual. I try to encourage the nurses to talk to P, or make a joke, tell him something, or turn on the TV. When I go to see him, he maybe a little out of it, but his presence there is quite strong. We need to encourage him to hold on to his faith and continue to build it big. I know that this is a lesson in patience and quiet and stillness. If we bear it well...  

At this point I really feel like our lives are blowing apart, that God is after "the truth" in both of us. Everything we thought life was supposed to be, it is not. God is doing a "make-over". We will be stripped bare, our pockets picked and nothing left but the shirts on our back and the faith in our hearts. I am optimistic about this.

Today is sing-along Friday, I found this cute little commercial, must be too long for TV. lives only on YOUTUBE.
Higher Love by Steve Winwood is the song...




Think about it, there must be higher love
Down in the heart or hidden in the stars above
Without it, life is wasted time
Look inside your heart, I’ll look inside mine
Things look so bad everywhere
In  this whole world, what is fair
We walk blind and we try to see
Falling behind in what could be

Bring me a higher love
Bring me a higher love
Bring me a higher love
Where’s that higher love I keep thinking of?

Worlds are turning and we’re just hanging on
Facing our fear and standing out there alone
A yearning and it’s real to me
There must be someone who’s feeling for me
Things look so bad everywhere
In this whole world, what is fair
We walk blind and we try to see
Falling behind in what could be

Bring me a higher love
Bring me a higher love
Bring me a higher love

Where’s that higher love I keep thinking of?

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Pondering: Greater Love



Don’t you love it when you are watching a TV show, and out of blue, and out of context, the characters begin to spout “bible verses”? It’s weird, almost like the writers wanted to throw them in to add validity to the program. I was watching a police drama called “Bluebloods”, it centers on an Irish American family, who have a tradition of serving their community as policemen and lawyers. They seem to be religious, they practice Catholicism. This particular story centers around a series of “vigilante type of murders”, and one of the main characters is interrogating a suspect. Apparently the suspect is admitting to the killings and to justify himself he quotes these verses in Exodus 21:24…an eye for an eye. After which the main character spouts off Proverbs 22:23 “For the Lord will plead their cause, and plunder the soul of those who plunder them.” This is some pretty heady stuff right? 
Plunder meaning steal goods from (a place or person), typically using force and in a time of war or civil disorder.   I looked up those scripture to make sure they were quoting them right and insure relevance (What…someone has to do it)

Have you pondered the “language” of these verses? Contrary to what we have assumed, a language is not the dialect we speak, nor is it French or English, etc. Language is words that form into legal precedence, such as contracts, or in scripture, words that have become promises, covenants, even curses. There is a theme, a pattern and a future purpose of the words in these verses. The language in theses verses seem to attribute to the atoning sacrifice of Jesus Christ. The context of the verse is a law and that if two men are fighting and a pregnant woman happens to be in the fray, maybe she is trying to stop the fight. And she is injured and it cause’s her to miscarry the baby the retribution is this:  
Exodus 21:23-24
23 And if any mischief follows, then thou shall give life for life,
 24 Eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot,
 25 Burning for burning wound for wound, stripe for stripe.

When I think of vengeance in its worst form, I think about “The Hatfield’s and the McCoy’s”, who according to lore, started an epic family feud because of a pig, and later because of sons and daughters dating on the wrong side of the family tree. This type of vengeance seems to be fueled by “eye for an eye”, and “righteous indignation”. The perpetrators are usually the family of the victim. In Deuteronomy 32:35 Jehovah (Jesus) declares that vengeance is rightfully His. Although He is not the victim, in some future time He will stand in for the victim and become the propitiation that is being punished. He will suffer the wrath of Heavenly Father against all past, present and future wrongs. He will give his life, which is his body and soul, to be retribution. In Deuteronomy 35 he declares Himself the avenger and the one who makes the payment of retribution.   
"Propitiation means the turning away of wrath by an offering. In relation to soteriology, propitiation means placating or satisfying the wrath of God by the atoning sacrifice of Christ.

Deuteronomy 32:35

35 Vengeance is Mine, and recompense;
their foot shall slip in due time;
for the day of their calamity is at hand,
and the things to come hasten upon them.’

But, in Matthew 5:38-48 Jesus further extrapolates the theology behind Deut. 35, he says….
“You have heard that it was said, ‘an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth, But I tell you not to resist an evil person. But whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also. 40 If anyone wants to sue you and take away your tunic, let him have your cloak also. 41 And whoever compels you to go one mile, go with him two. 42 Give to him who asks you, and from him who wants to borrow from you do not turn away.
Does that sound like he is trying to take away the “sting” of vengeance? Can you find his admonition to “love thy neighbor” in these verses? Jesus said “Vengeance is mine or vengeance is mine to bear, and I will also repay for the wrongs committed. What do I really know about the Savior's his atoning sacrifice? Do I know what those words mean?  In Isaiah, the Lord speaks to us, he gives us a glimpse into his mindset 

Isaiah 50:6

I gave My back to those who struck Me,
And My cheeks to those who plucked out the beard;
I did not hide My face from shame and spitting.

In Isaiah 50, he gave his cheeks to have his beard plucked out. I have never really considered what it means to pluck, until I thought about how a chicken’s feathers are “plucked” out of their skin.(It's pretty brutal). In Matthew 26:67 Then they spit in his face and beat him with their fists; and others slapped him. There he is true to his word to offer his face for slapping, his body for beating.  He was beaten with whips and sticks, as he was struggling to drag a heavy portion of lumber of what would be his "cross" through the town.People screamed at him; hit him, spit at him. Wow how humiliating. I don’t know if I have ever been humiliated in these terms in my life, have you? I don’t know if I could bear it.
Doctrine & Covenants 19:16-18……….For behold, I, God, have suffered these things for all that they might not suffer if they would repent; Which suffering caused myself, even God, the greatest of all, to tremble because of pain, and to bleed at every pore, and to suffer both body and spirit…
Speaking of the extent of the suffering required of Christ, President Joseph Fielding Smith said: “We cannot comprehend the great suffering that the Lord had to take upon himself to bring to pass this redemption from death and from sin. …“We get into the habit of thinking, I suppose, that his great suffering was when he was nailed to the cross by his hands and his feet and was left there to suffer until he died. As excruciating as that pain was, that was not the greatest suffering that he had to undergo, for in some way which I cannot understand, but which I accept on faith, and which you must accept on faith, he carried on his back the burden of the sins of the whole world. It is hard enough for me to carry my own sins. How is it with you? And yet he had to carry the sins of the whole world, as our Savior and the Redeemer of a fallen world, and so great was his suffering before he ever went to the cross, we are informed, that blood oozed from the pores of his body.” (In Conference Report, Oct. 1947, pp. 147–48.)
Lately, the Lord has put on my own heart, to ponder just what it means to be called a son or daughter of God. We are bought with a price, an awful price of blood, sweat and tears. You could say, "Well let's not dwell on the ugliness, let's move on to the victory, the resurrection, the ascension." Are we like Thomas, who loved Jesus with all of his heart, but could not bear the "realness" of his sacrifice, much less his death. But Jesus loved him anyway, and sought him out, and bid him to touch the wounds. One day we will too.

New music Tuesday y'all, Sidewalk Prophets "YOU LOVE ME ANYWAY" It's a sing a long too, the words at the bottom of the page.  

Sidewalk Prophets - You Love Me Anyway (Official Video)



The question was raised
As my conscience fell
A silly, little lie
It didn't mean much
But it lingers still
In the corners of my mind

Still you call me to walk
On the edge of this world
To spread my dreams and fly
But the future's so far
My heart is so frail
I think I'd rather stay inside

But You love me anyway
It's like nothing in life that I've ever known
Yes, You love me anyway
Oh Lord, how You love me
How You love me

It took more than my strength
To simply be still
To seek but never find
All the reasons we change
The reasons I doubt
And why do loved ones have to die?
But You love me anyway
It's like nothing in life that I've ever known
Yes, You love me anyway
Oh Lord, how You love me

I am the thorn in Your crown
But You love me anyway
I am the sweat from Your brow
But You love me anyway
I am the nail in Your wrist
But You love me anyway
I am Judas' kiss
But You love me anyway

See now, I am the man who yelled out from the crowd
For Your blood to be spilled on this earth shaking ground
Yes then, I turned away with a smile on my face
With this sin in my heart tried to bury Your grace
And then alone in the night, I still called out for You
So ashamed of my life, my life, my life

But You love me anyway
It's like nothing in life that I've ever known
Yes, You love me anyway
Oh Lord, how You love me
You love me, yes You love me
How You love me
How You love me
How You love me