Epiphanies…in the Here and Now

image via from the heart of j

image via from the heart of j

“Upon you the Lord shines…and over you appears His glory…”(Is 60:2)

This seems such a beautiful description of heaven…and yet if heaven is in the here and now, then the Lord is shining upon you and me…and over you and me appears His glory.

In the here and now…

You, me, all of God’s children…

In the here and now…

“Your heart shall throb and overflow…” (Is 60:5)

For truths such as these are the epiphanies of life…when it’s as if we bump into the eternal love of God and our hearts swell through Him, with Him and in Him.

In the epiphanies of life we more deeply discover what it means to be His Beloved.

My Lord, give us eyes that see and hearts that soar!

Blessings on this Feast of the Epiphany …to you and yours…in the here and now.

These Boots are Made for Walking…

image via from the heart of j

image via from the heart of j

These boots are made for walking…right into the New Year 2016. How will you enter into the New Year? We are hearing a lot about resolutions, but as a positive psychology practitioner, I would like to point out…

Resolutions focus on changing something we perceive as wrong in our lives. Beginning with the negative often ends in the negative.  How about starting 2016 with the positive? With ONE WORD. ONE WORD that represents a new focus, a new outlook, a special quality that marks the way ahead.  Words are powerful…a single word can inspire, motivate, connect, build up and forge a path forward when that ONE WORD becomes a signpost on our journey.  I challenge each of you to prayerfully ask God to reveal to you ONE WORD, YOUR ONE WORD, for the path ahead this year. Then post this word somewhere you frequent, ponder it, chew on it, allow it to transform your faith filled, journey ahead!  (partially re-posted from New Year 2015, because I know how powerful this New Year’s tradition can become in your life and the lives of your loved ones. Listen to their words as well and let that guide your prayers for them for the upcoming year)

Your boots will walk right into the New Year with a positive, faith filled stride!

For last year’s words belong to last year’s language…And next year’s words await another voice.” T. S. Eliot

Happy New Year 2016

From the Heart of J

Make Some Noise…

image via from the heart of j

image via from the heart of j

Let the weary world rejoice

in spite of threats of terrorism…in spite of financial instability and an unpredictable economy…in spite of violence and health crises…in spite of opposition against the dignity of human life and the war against families…in spite of a rise in the use of illegal drugs and human trafficking…in spite of the apathy of many.

Let the weary world rejoice

Let us lay down our burdens in surrender to God..

As we struggle to walk forward in the heaviness of our burdens…we soon find…

His Grace is weightless!

Let the weary world rejoice…

 For God’s Love is unwearied…

Let the weary world rejoice…

For Our Savior has been born.

The Gift that Compels…

image via from the heart of j

image via from the heart of j

The angel said to the shepherds, ” I proclaim to you a great joy… today the Savior of the world is born for you, alleluia.”

For you…for me…for all.

The Greatest Gift ever given.

No other gift given or received today makes sense without first receiving this Greatest Gift given.

Are we entranced by the pretty wrap and bow and have yet to open The Gift?…Have we put it on a shelf at a comfortable distance from our lives? …How are we certain we have opened The Gift?…

When the love of Christ compels us to share  The Gift with others…in that often quiet, but unique way, that God intends for our lives to become through His grace perfect acts of love that give witness to Him.

Merry Christmas to all my readers…may the love of Christ compel you to share The Gift with all on your life’s path,

Joyfully, From the Heart of J

Holy Haste of the Spirit…

image via from the heart of j

image via from the heart of j

Holy Haste of the Spirit? …or…Hectic Haste of the Holidays?

Holy Haste through the hill country of charity?…or…Hectic Hate through the mall of much?

Mary demonstrates to us the holy haste through the hill country of Judah to assist her cousin Elizabeth in her time of need.

Are we pursuing the holy haste that leas us to the gift of the nativity?…or the Hectic Haste that leads to the spinning of our wheels breathless in the holiday huff and puff?

It is one of those profound mysteries that in the holy haste of charity, there is a hint of that peace of timelessness that slows down our busy bodies because it connects us the holy hush of Christmas eternal.

May your holy haste this week be blessed.

John Lewis, on online retailer in the UK, recently released their 2015 Christmas Commercial and the video has gone viral. I think because many can relate. It’s about a girl named Lily who after looking through a telescope discovers the man in the moon. She is determined to let him know that someone is thinking of him. John Lewis has produced this commercial to bring awareness to the over a million senior citizens who will go the next holiday month without talking to a single person. See the video below…it will certainly inspire your Hoy Haste!

Unshakeable Confidence…

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image via from the heart of j

“Spirit, lead me where my trust is without borders…Take me deeper than my feet will ever wander and my faith will be made stronger in the presence of my Savior.” Hillsong United

What if you led your life with a trust without borders…a trust in a God whose unwearied, extravagant love for you personally is so beyond what your mind and heart could ever fathom? What would your life look like? How would it change?

With unshakeable confidence let us set forth this week knowing with our eyes on God, we can walk on water.

Are You the Tootsie in the Tootsie Roll Pop…the Prize in the Cracker Jack?

image by heart of j

image by heart of j

Recently when making a sandwich (yes, that’s gluten free bread)…I pulled out a slice of bread that looked like this…

and in the funny way this from the heart of j’s mind works I thought of a line from a TS Eliot poem, “We are the hollow men. We are the stuffed men leaning together headpiece filled with straw. Alas!”

And I thought of Christmas…

The hustle and bustle of the holiday season has begun. With  the secularization of Christmas so many are going through the motions in an almost robotic fashion. By this date I have to have a tree up – CHECK- , my shopping list is almost complete – CHECK- , holiday baking done -CHECK-, -CHECK-, -CHECK-, -CHECK-!

Have we become the hollow men?

In the secular shallowness, we need to be the tootsie in the tootsie roll pop, the prize in the Cracker Jack, the crème filling in the Twinkie to others…you know, the modern day salt in the Earth and leaven in the dough.

By our actions and our words, reminding people of the true meaning of Christmas. Drawing others into the truth that we are all extravagantly loved by “The Word who became Flesh and dwelled among us”

No longer hollow…our lives are forever changed!

Make it a Place of Springs…..

image via from the heart of j

image via from the heart of j

“As they go through the Bitter Valley, they make it a place of springs”(Ps86)

Be the bearer of the water from the well…

Be the water struck from the rock…

Be the water calmed by His word…

Be the water poured forth from His side…

Yes, as you go through the Bitter Valley of this day…

Make it a place of springs….

Allowing a current of grace to flow from you to others…

Yes, making it a place of springs.

Walking Each Other Home…

 

image via ccsthorton.com

image via ccsthorton.com

We are all just walking each other home…

In the good, the bad, the ugly and the beautiful…

we are all just walking each other home.

Our lives intersect and collide, bump into and bounce off of…

And yet we are all just walking each other home.

In our clumsy, wobbly way of journeying…

infused with grace…

we are all just walking each other home.