To My Soul – An Advent Poem

An Advent poem after advent? Yes, because if we hold to his first, we look forward, ever expectantly, for his second.

In what will you be content,
Oh Soul?
What is it you love?
What loves you faithfully back?
Nature’s delicacies are pure,
But fleeting.
And people,
My dear people,
Are sincere,
But faulty.

Satisfaction is in the 
Transcendent incarnated,
Word made flesh,
Promise fulfilled,
Delight manifest,
Joy dawned,
Love that came down.

Find your yearning in the King
Who made,
Who is,
Who always will
Be beauty,
Love,
Goodness,
And Truth.
Find what you long for 
In Him, my Soul.

By Anna Young

Twinkling – A Christmas Poem

Here is the full text of the poem:

Strands of bulbs deck each home,
And something flickers as we go.
The bright colors, and the warm glow
Settle my mind to rest, not roam.

Her eyes flash!
The voices rise to a crash!
She squeals, “More!”
Her siblings debate the best seen before.

“More Christmas lights!”
An encore for this favorite of sights.
I ignore the glaring clock,
And we go once more ’round the block.

By Anna Young

Also, here is me reading the poem aloud, which is how poetry is meant to be experienced.

Soli Deo Gloria

Meditating on the Word

I do not know why, but this particular Psalm keeps coming up.
As a child, I knew a song that contained some of the words of this Psalm. I would sing it over and over to myself when I was alone and scared in my room for one reason or another.
Psalm 56 just happened to be next in my Bible reading this morning. I was so refreshed by it, I thought I would share it, along with some recent snaps of our morning outside time on our front steps.

Psalm 56
To the choir master: according to The Dove of Far-off Terebinths. A Miktam of David, when the Philistines seized him in Gath.

Be gracious to me, O God, for man tramples on me;
     all day long an attacker oppresses me;
my enemies trample on me all day long,
     for many attack me proudly.
When I am afraid, 
     I put my trust in you.
In God, whose word I praise,
     in God I trust; I shall not be afraid.
     What can flesh do to me?

All day long they injure my cause;
     all their thoughts are against me for evil.
They stir up strife, they lurk;
     they watch my steps,
     as they have waited for my life.
For their crime will they escape?
     In wrath cast down the peoples, O God!

You have kept count of my tossings;
     put my tears in your bottle.
     Are they not in your book?
Then my enemies will turn back
     in the day when I call.
     This I know, that God is for me.
In God, whose word I praise,
     in the LORD, whose word I praise,
in God I trust; I shall not be afraid.
     What can man do to me?

I must perform my vows to you, O God;
     I will render thank offerings to you.
For you have delivered my soul from death,
     yes, my feet from falling,
that I may walk before God
     in the light of life.

Soli Deo Gloria!

Relationship-ing

During a pandemic? During a second shut down?

Yes and yes.

Life does not stop because of crisis, or rules, or sickness, or personal issues, or job losses, or stir crazy children, or school closures, or whatever. Life still happens. Importantly, relationships still happen. Most importantly, the calling and commands of God do not change (or completely evaporate) because of circumstances.

I am a wife. I am called and commanded to honor my husband.
Nothing going on has changed that.
I am a mother. I am called and commanded to teach, train, instruct, discipline, love, and encourage my children.
Nothing going on has changed that.
The fact that I am a mother, has also not negated the fact that I am a wife, and that the calling and command to honor my husband came before and trumps that of the calling and commands in regards to my children.

My relationship with my husband is crucial in raising our children, and my relationship with my husband takes precedence over the relationships with my children.

So, I need to take the time to keep investing in my relationship with my husband. I need to keep dating him.

Every couple is different. So finding what works for each couple will look different.
Some couples like to go out, do something different, explore the outdoors, do something service oriented, cuddle with a movie, buy each other sentimentally significant gifts, and so many other things.
For us, its talking. Yes, this pair of introverts loves spending hours together just talking. Talking together it how we date. It’s how we dated (literally, so many hours of college were spent just sitting in the Chick-fil-a parking lot talking, letting our food get cold, and our sodas watery).

So, maybe in a pandemic, or under certain shut-down/stay-at-home orders, formal dates are challenging. We love good food, so that’s been a change for us, not looking forward to that one time every few months to try some yummy food at a restaurant.
But, we have tried making new things at home, and ordered out (thank you Door Dash!) a good bit.
We like to give each other “just because” gifts. We can’t do anything real fancy, but my husband came back from the store last night with cranberry juice, my absolute favorite! So, you know, it doesn’t have to be fancy to be special. 🙂

I will say that although talking is a favorite for us, communication is not key to every relationship. Communication is essential to any relationship. There are no exceptions here. The more significant and central the relationship, the more important communication is.

No matter what relationship you are in: married, dating, single, child, parent, co-worker, grandparent, grandchild, teacher, student, friend, boss, employee. Keep investing in it, keep pursuing it, keep talking, keep doing that thing that connects you, keep working through those hard things that you butt heads over, keep forgiving, keep saying sorry, keep learning, keep teaching, keep being kind, keep relationship-ing.

Soli Deo Gloria

Rawness of mourning

12 hours through the worst 24 hours of my life up until now.

My eyes are swollen.

The tears still come.

It’s wrong, it’s painful, it’s not supposed to happen. But it does, and it’s happening to me.

I don’t know why, but I know I loved you already.

No face, no hands, no voice, nothing but a memory.

A sign said yes, a week later became a loud, unmistakable, gut wrenching no.

I never met you, but I loved you already.

I can’t think of the “what ifs”, the “would haves”, the “should haves”. It’s too much, too painful, too many tears.

I’m just sad.

So sad.

I loved you already.

To my angel baby: I’m processing your loss, my loss, your life, your death, your existence, and, now, my emptiness.

If I already loved you so, I know you’re in much safer hands now. More loving hands. Eternal, secure, sovereign hands.

I’m comforted by prayers, and truth that many who loved you are also in His hands. Already, and not yet.

I already loved you, but I have not yet loved you. Not yet held you, not yet seen you, not yet told you.

My angel baby.

I miss you. I’m sad. I weep.

I love you.

Father, I do not understand… “Lord, I believe, but help my unbelief”.

Soli Deo Gloria