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Showing posts from March, 2010

Prayer Summit: Grieving

The final session of the prayer summit (I’ve skipped over two) was a celebration.  “Precious Bridegroom, we want to dance with you tonight,” the leader prayed.  “You lead and we will follow.”  For me, it was a time to grieve. 
Standing near me at the back of the room was a young mother with what looked like four small boys.  Since I raised four sons I felt an affinity with her.  You should pray for her, I heard God say, but that felt awkward.  Surely I could pray for her and her sons quietly without her even knowing.  No.  Go to her.  It was a fight to do so, but finally I went up to her and told her I too had four sons.  Could I pray for her and the boys?  Yes, I could.  And so I did.
After I sat back down, the prayer that kept repeating in my thoughts was, “Don’t let her have to bury any of her sons.  Keep them alive.  Let them all outlive her, God!”  The pain was great but it only prompted me to continue repeating my prayer. 
The thought came to me that I should ask one of the women…

Prayer Summit: Intimate Love

If I felt urged to do anything during the third session of the prayer summit, it was to move to the back of the gymnasium where we were meeting.  I seem often to prefer being at the back at church and similar meetings but is that an escape?  A way to observe instead of participate?  Why this urge?  Perhaps it’s because at the back I feel freer to be me and do what I’m moved to do, without feeling like I’m on display. 
Am I more of an observer than a participant?  If I am, is that bad?  If I am, am I missing out?  Or is my sitting in the back and writing another way to connect with God that’s as valid as dancing and painting?  For me, it’s a way to sit in God’s presence and simply be with him and I need that.
Oh Lord, you're beautiful, Your face is all I seek, For when your eyes are on this child, Your grace abounds to me.  --D. Cleaveland and Keith Green
Come live in freedom here... Come see with spirit eyes Come see The door is open... His arms are open --Michael W. Smith
See the love in his…

Prayer Summit: Love Has Won the Victory

The second and third sessions were personally significant for me but, at first, I felt like an outsider as I watched those who were freer in expressing their prayers with movement.
A short, thick, older woman with whom I identified was dancing with two scarves enthusiastically and with abandon.  If she could do this, so could I.  But I didn’t. 
A young, lithe woman had wrapped the long length of blue chiffon over her.  She was dancing with passion and beauty.  Unwrapping it, she held it with both hands, letting it flow with her wildly-moving arms.
An older man knelt on the floor waving a brown chiffon flag vigorously from side to side.
The first woman placed a long, yellowish green chiffon over the back of her neck, draping it down her arms to her hands.  She wrapped it around herself.
You are the God Who saves us, worthy of all our praises...
Come have Your way among us
We welcome You here, Lord Jesus
'Cause when we see You, we find strength to face the day  --Paul Baloche
A line of da…

What is a Prayer Summit?

I didn’t have a clue but I love anything to do with prayer and remembered the reports about it last year.  I had to go. 
The purpose seems to be to listen to hear what God has to say to the Church—local and national, Vineyard and others.  It’s been an annual event for the Vineyard churches in the Canadian Prairies (Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta) for the past five years and has been held in a variety of places in each province.  This year about a hundred people met at Bethel Lutheran Church in Sherwood Park, Alberta, a small city very close to Edmonton, coming from not only the prairie Vineyard churches but from British Columbia and New Brunswick as well.
The Church is the bride of Christ so, at the front of the room, was a (very chaste) bridal gown on a dress form with combat boots on the floor against the gown.  Being the bride of Christ is about intimacy with God—not fuzzy feelings but about taking up our cross and following him; about interceding to him for others. Our God is a …

Ingratitude and the Bronze Snake

I’m trying to return to my daily times with God in my prayer room. One of the things I do when I’m here is read Psalm 139.At the very end of the chapter, David asks God to see if there is any offensive way in him.Today it occurred to me to ask God, “In what way is my attitude towards Tom and my relationship with Tom offensive to you?”It’s a question that I haven’t quite pondered in the same way and at first I couldn’t think of an answer so, rather than manufacture one, I continued on in my time with God.This is the fourth week of Lent and so I turned to the Lenten passages of Scripture for today.
In the first passage, Numbers 21:4-9, we find the story of the bronze snake.The people were complaining about what God was doing and accused him of bringing them into the desert to die.In fact, he had brought them there so they could live!They complained that they had nothing to eat when God had kept them nourished with manna.They eschewed the manna and hated this provision of God.
Then it hit …

Turkish Genocide of Armenians

U.S. panel backs Armenian genocide declaration

A U.S. congressional panel has approved a resolution declaring the Ottoman-era killing of Armenians genocide.In Turkey, the government said it was recalling its ambassador from Washington in response.Read more.
This news story is of great importance to me because of some research I did about ten to twelve years ago.  I was writing a children's book proposal for an educational publisher in Maine.  The intent of the book was to use the alphabet to highlight 26 people groups that aren't well known.  A is for Armenia.

I loved my research on the Armenians--a people I knew little about.  In reading every book and every website I could find on the country and the people, I grew to love them.  They have suffered much because of their refusal to turn away from Christianity and embrace Islam, beginning a thousand years ago when the Turkic people began to pour out of Central Asia, conquering much as they moved west and eventually settling int…

Abraham's Bosom, Saints under the Altar, Resurrection

My husband handed me a question last week that someone had given to him.  He was hoping I could answer it for him.  I've spent two or three hours working on the answer, so I decided I'd share my response here as well.


Q: If the dead who died and believed in God (Old Testament) which the Bible refers to as Abraham’s bosom, are they the saints under the altar that Revelation talks about?If so, did Christ bring them to heaven after his resurrection or while he was in the pit?
Abraham’s bosom = Heaven / Paradise
There is only one passage that talks about “Abraham’s bosom,” and that is in Jesus’ parable in Luke 16 and not in all translations.In the New International Version, Luke 16:23 says that Lazarus (a man in a parable, not the brother of Mary and Martha) was “by his side,” meaning beside Abraham’s side.
To see how all the different translations word this, go to: http://www.biblestudytools.com/luke/16-23-compare.html
The idea of a dead person being “in Abraham’s bosom,” or “by his si…