The LOUDEST Quiet

Standing on the cold rocks in a river bed, I feel the chill of swirling waters. They sound as if they are talking to me…but it’s His voice I hear.

My Father has a way of speaking in the strangest of places. Sometimes in stillness, sometimes in the vast caverns of devastation, and sometimes in the multitude of business…but He always speaks. The thing is…am I listening? Am I listening for HIS voice, or paying more attention to the other sounds spilling out around me?

I bend over to pick up a piece of broken glass. It sparkles like a jewel, and I wonder what it was before it was broken. Can it be useful again? I skip it across the water, and then wonder if I just tossed away something important, which is silly. What can you do with a piece of broken glass anyway? If I pocketed it, I would surely cut my finger. Or, I’d find it in the washer, snagging my favorite sweater. Yeah, who needs brokenness?

Wait…

…listening…

I wonder how much water it takes to fill up this space? How much coolness does it take to soothe the hot rocks, and nourish the plants? A fish swims near, making little sounds with his tail. Unimportant sounds. I wonder how many times a day he swishes his tail, and heaves his feathery gills? A dragonfly takes cover…he’s privy to the fish…he heard the “unimportant sounds.” I guess those sounds were pretty important to the dragonfly. I wonder…

..did my Father plan EVERY swish of the fish’s tail? EVERY buzz of the dragonfly’s wing? Those little sounds, most of which would never be heard by anyone but Him…

…are important to Him, because every sound of creation cries out His Name!

“HOSANNA! GLORY IN THE HIGHEST!”

I’ve walked about six feet along the winding water-path. Something stings my toe.

Glass.

And then I feel the cut. The consequence of a careless step.

All things are made new. Nothing is wasted or forgotten. Nothing sits unnoticed by the Author of the Universe…so I just wait…

…for healing.

You cannot be healed until you are broken. Until you are broken, you cannot sit still and listen. I sit on a big rock, hold my toe, and listen.

It takes time for the bleeding to stop, but in that space of time, I hear my Father speak. The sound of His words are sweet. Soul medicine. Things I would not have heard if I had been skipping rocks, or splashing in the mud. No, it’s the LOUDEST quiet

…unmistakable Voice..

…worth every cut and scrape. And when my careless steps are put back on solid ground, I know that it was I who threw the glass in my own path. The Healer had the clean, clear Water at the ready…

…washing all wounds, and carving a letter of Grace into the flesh.

And my soul leaps like the little fish, making sounds that are important to my Creator.

But he said, “If they kept quiet, the stones would do it for them, shouting praise.” (Luke 19:40) ~The Message

The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.

He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.

He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.” (Psalm 23:1-3)

“In his hand is the life of every creature and the breath of all mankind.” (Job 12:10)

“A man’s heart plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps.” (Proverbs 16:9)


“Incline your ear, and come to me; hear, that your soul may live …” (Isaiah 55:3)

Until next time,

The Carpenter’s Daughter

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Pray For Me (A Cry for Dignity)

Pray for me.

Set my heart free.

I crouch in darkness. Fearing what lies in the corners of their minds. Will I even make it ’till morning?

Do you love me? Do you even see me? Can you hear me breathing…?

I breathe. I feel. Though I wish I could emerge into the safety of my thoughts…

…my thoughts have been robbed.

The very recesses of my mind; violated.

I want to be somewhere else.

Pray for me.

I am blonde, brunette, fair, dark, tall, short…

…beautiful.

I am invisible; a forsaken treasure that no longer shines.

Pray for me.

I want to see the light. The light has been gone from me for so long that I fear it’s presence will pierce my very soul. Will it judge me? Will it cause me to cower in my shame? Shame that was pulled over me, like an exhausting curtain.

I want to breathe again. How do I breathe!?!

Pray for me.

Do I have value? Do I even dare to ask for worth? What makes me think that I could even BEGIN to know what it’s like to not shrink from the hands that were meant to protect me?

Pray for me.

I want to be a mother, a friend, a child…

…a daughter, a wife, a PERSON.

I don’t want to be in this prison, or exist in the hell that has seized me. I never chose this. I was caught, beaten, tricked, lied to, and condemned. Is there an exit?

How can I emerge from this slimy shell, and let everyone see that I am really the glistening pearl inside? That I was crafted by the One Who’s very ocean of Grace could cover me? I don’t know how, because I have never been told that I have worth.

Pray for me.

Please, no more fear. No more pain. No more hunger. My stomach claws for food. My baby screams for shelter. My sisters go missing, and I cannot bear to hear that one more child will ever know the pain I have endured.

My heart grasps desperately to hold onto the very idea of grace.

GRACE.

Who will find me? Who is willing to reach out and shatter the cold glass of indifference? Ignorance.

Will you,

Pray for me?

Isaiah 10:1-2
“Woe to those who make unjust laws, to those who issue oppressive decrees, to deprive the poor of their rights and withhold justice from the oppressed of my people, making widows their prey and robbing the fatherless.”

Dear friends,

Did you know that when you drop to your knees, and pray for the precious ones who are enslaved in the trafficking industry, you are fighting a REAL war? Did you know that war is raged against YOU too? Against YOUR children? When we are ignorant, or indifferent, we are weakened, blinded, and paralyzed. If we are not willing to fight against the evils of this world, we are never going to see the darkness recede. God has placed the least of these into our care. He is bending His ear to our prayers…waiting for us to LOVE someone that we don’t even know! Love them SO MUCH, that we cannot do anything but drop to our knees. The same kind of love He has for us. His love knows no boundaries.

When the enemy says that you are without power, KNOW YOU ARE STANDING WITH THE GOD OF THE ANGEL ARMIES! He will not be moved! To be a warrior, you must be willing to FIGHT. What an HONOR it is to be placed under the command of the Great I AM. He hears their cries. Do you? Do I?

Let us hold one another accountable. Educate each another. Let us band together, as Christian brothers and sisters. No more INJUSTICE!

Until Next Time,

The Carpenter’s Daughter

To all the ones fighting this war, thank you. I am proud to call you my friends, and yes…family. Some of you have LITERALLY put your lives on the line. There are prayer warriors, moms, kids, dads…so many who have had ENOUGH.

Praise be to God, the One who first loved us. The One who saw us in our plight, and came to our rescue.

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Why Do I Fall?

Why do I fall at His feet?

Why do I wait until I am so tired, worn, rugged, and burnt out? What brings me to this place?

There is presumed comfort in so many things…

…but they hold no Grace…

…no real comfort.

So I fall.

I fall because He catches me. He sustains me. My feet slip often. His love is like sandals on my feet. He puts a grip in my step, so I don’t continue stumbling. He sustains. He alone sustains. Why do I so often follow the wrong path, or doubt the direction that He points me towards? I know that at some point, I am going to have to turn around and meet Him…

…I want to meet Him.

He is unmoving, always waiting for me. I moved. He never took a step.

My place in His presence,

This sacred place…

He alone can offer.

Just me. Just Him.

Why do I fall?

Because I know that I can let go of whatever has me in its grip…

…I know that He will catch me…

…not because I deserve it, but because He walked this Earth to save me from this wayward path. That wretched, ugly, twisted path that never overcomes. The rocks, the crevices, the ditches, the cliffs, they hold no power over me! They may leave scars, but they never prevail.

I am His.

He sustains. He redeems.

I forever fall ONLY at His feet.

I fall in awe…may I never get back up.

Mary therefore took a pound of expensive ointment made from pure nard, and anointed the feet of Jesus and wiped his feet with her hair. The house was filled with the fragrance of the perfume.” (John 12:3)

 

Until next time,

The Carpenter’s Daughter

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The Gift

On a TREE, my Savior died.

A WREATH of thorns for His head…

A spear for His side.

As a baby, He came to Earth…

Giving hope to all.

Giving worth.

While the shepherds followed a star,

We don’t have to look that far.

He left His GIFT,

under the tree.

That gift’s for you…

that gift’s for me!

MERRY CHRISTMAS!

(Go ahead and OPEN YOUR GIFT!!!)

 

“My beloved friends, let us continue to love each other since love comes from God. Everyone who loves is born of God and experiences a relationship with God. The person who refuses to love doesn’t know the first thing about God, because God is love—so you can’t know him if you don’t love. This is how God showed his love for us: God sent his only Son into the world so we might live through him. This is the kind of love we are talking about—not that we once upon a time loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to clear away our sins and the damage they’ve done to our relationship with God.

My dear, dear friends, if God loved us like this, we certainly ought to love each other. No one has seen God, ever. But if we love one another, God dwells deeply within us, and his love becomes complete in us—perfect love!

This is how we know we’re living steadily and deeply in him, and he in us: He’s given us life from his life, from his very own Spirit. Also, we’ve seen for ourselves and continue to state openly that the Father sent his Son as Savior of the world. Everyone who confesses that Jesus is God’s Son participates continuously in an intimate relationship with God. We know it so well, we’ve embraced it heart and soul, this love that comes from God.”

(1 John 4:7-14) ~The Message~

Until Next Time,

The Carpenter’s Daughter

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A Season of Grace

Let there be salt without limit,

let it fall down like snow.

Piles, and drifts, and glimmering granules…

…a show…

…of GRACE.

Snow covers, and whitens the darkest night.

Salt purifies a soul,

no more pain.

Afflictions are seasoned,

GRACE piles high…

Countless, unlimited portions.

Watch it fall, like pure white snowflakes.

This is a SEASON…

…unending.

A gift.

JESUS.

Receive, and give.

Grace never stops falling…

…it is without limit.

 

“…salt without limit.” (Ezra 7:22)

 

Until next time,

The Carpenter’s Daughter

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Who Wants Cake!?!

My Father’s birthday is next month. He never wants anything fancy, or new. In fact, He always wants the same thing! I will tell you all about that soon.

Today, I am baking Him a cake. Of course, He always gives away every slice. He loves to see His children smile, as they get their piece. I can hear Him laugh the loudest when the babies use the icing as a hair product. Even though He always gives away every slice, I want it to be the perfect cake. I want to bring Him an offering of sweetness that fills the room with the smell of vanilla orchids, and butter cream. I think I will decorate the cake with tiny, golden sugar bells, and little red birds, made from frosting. White lilies will line the border. There should be three tiers…yes…we always need more cake.

As I tie bows around the cake pedestals, I think about how this reminds me of the way my life is tied up in my Daddy. I also think about the things that are not tied up in Him. How I tend to be greedy with my cake sometimes. How I don’t always want to share my piece. I mean, I worked hard to make that cake. I took the time to choose the finest crystalized sugar, to make it sparkle and eye-catching. I had to make the mess, mix the batter, grease the pan…it’s hard work! I should at least enjoy my piece in…uh…peace, right?

As I pipe the lilies around the edges, I can hear my Daddy’s laughter in corners of my memories. It’s contagious. It makes me want to hear more. I want to listen to that sound as much as possible. And I know just how to get Him started…..

…share my piece with a baby….

…and watch that little one use the icing as a hair product…

…and laugh until my sides hurt. No, WE will laugh until our sides hurt! This would be shared laughter, the best kind. The only kind that brings tears of joy, and makes your sides split.

My Daddy just peeked around the corner. He has already started inviting guests to His party. Are you going to come? There will be plenty of cake.

We’ll talk about the GIFT soon.

Until next time,

The Carpenter’s Daughter

P.S. My Father is the One who provided the ingredients for the cakes AND paid for the Gift! He invites you to the party to RECEIVE this Gift freely, AND to partake in the the sweetness of His glory. You are NOT going to want to miss this party!

“Taste and see that the Lord is good.
Oh, the joys of those who take refuge in him!”

Psalm 34:8

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Rain

As I walk down the path that leads to the Carpenter’s shop, rain begins to fall. At first, I am annoyed. I don’t like my hair wet, my clothes soggy, and I really don’t like the wet dog smell that is sure to stick. I continue my journey…uphill. Then, I remember! I have an umbrella! Digging through my bag, I find it. I quickly flick it open, continue on, and think about how dirty my shoes are going to be when I get there. Why on Earth, did I wear my favorite shoes? How could I have not noticed the dark clouds? When did they sneak up on me?

Trekking along, I stop. What’s that noise? Frogs. Hmmm…I like frogs. I actually think they are cute. Not toads. Those are an entirely different story. But frogs…they sing. They just SING their hearts out, and they LOVE the rain! Those little guys find it as an opportunity to hop, and conduct happy choruses of joy. It makes me skip a little.

I am now in the little yard, that surrounds the carpentry shop. I stop at the bird bath. Interesting. Look at how my feathered friends joyfully splash about. They even seem to DELIGHT in sharing the water with their neighbor; spritzing and throwing droplets at each other. Instead of worrying about their shoes, they are basking in the crisp, cool FUN of it all. I notice that they are finding their lunch easier as well. Little worms are peeking out, perking up to the song of rain.

When did rain stop being a song? When was the last time I stopped, popped open my umbrella, and just stood in that little shelter…in awe? Wonderment? Worship.

Rain can do two things. It can make everything very muddy, or it can wash away impurities. It’s all in how I choose to embrace it. I can see it as a huge obstacle, or an opportunity to kick off my heavy shoes, and dance in the puddles.

Which reminds me, I love twirling my umbrella in the rain…

It’s a very colorful umbrella. I like the way its yellow top shines and drips, and looks like the sun. Yep, I give it twirl it. It’s keeping the rain off of my head, but is making my heart joyful somehow. It’s a shelter…a friend. A banner singing over me.

Oh, look! There is my Father, standing on the porch. He is smiling. NO! He is laughing! Big, beautiful tears of laughter! And He is delighting in the fact that I have stopped to stick my feet out from under the umbrella. Yeah, I hit some nasty, dark, ugly puddles…but the rain took care of the mess. My Father’s laughter is like thunder. And I cannot help but join in. We hook arms, go up the steps, enter the shop…but we don’t shut the door. No, not today. Today, we sing, laugh, and dance WITH the rain!

“May we shout for joy over your victory
and lift up our banners in the name of our God.” (Psalm 20:5)

“Let my teaching fall like rain
and my words descend like dew,
like showers on new grass,
like abundant rain on tender plants.” (Deuteronomy 32:2)

“The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and he helps me. My heart leaps for joy, and with my song I praise him.”  (Psalm 28:7)

“Whoever believes in me, as Scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow from within them.” (John 7:38)

Deuteronomy 32:2 (The Message)

The Song

Listen, Heavens, I have something to tell you. Attention, Earth, I’ve got a mouth full of words. My teaching, let it fall like a gentle rain,
my words arrive like morning dew,
Like a sprinkling rain on new grass,
like spring showers on the garden.
For it’s God’s Name I’m preaching—
respond to the greatness of our God!
The Rock: His works are perfect,
and the way he works is fair and just;
A God you can depend upon, no exceptions,
a straight-arrow God.
His messed-up, mixed-up children, his non-children,
throw mud at him but none of it sticks.

Dear friends,

As we approach Thanksgiving, let us rejoice in the One who has brought us through the storms, and saved us from the mud of life.

Until next time,

The Carpenter’s Daughter

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