Friday, July 28, 2017

Sweet Memories, What a Joy

I’ve been looking through the “kids” files again. Such a joy.

February 24, 1994: “Before I went to bed last night, I went into the girls' room and asked Rebecca if I could cover her up. She said, ‘No. I still like you, but I just don't want you to.’"

“Rebecca went to the bathroom and got some candy. Sarah wanted some candy, too. I asked if she wanted to go to the potty and then get candy. She said, ‘Sarah go to potty Sarah grow up.’"

“This afternoon Rebecca was telling Caleb the story of Jonah. When she got to the place about how Jonah didn't want to go to Nineveh because the people were so bad she said, ‘I think they were biting other kids; that's why they were bad.’"

March 24, 1994: “The other day I told Rebecca that my heart hurt because it was so full of love for her it was going to bust. She said her heart hurt, and I asked why. She said it was so full it was going to bust. I asked what it was full of; I was hoping. She said, ‘Ice cream.’"   

March 24, 1994: “A minute ago Sarah was drinking some water at the dining room gate. I took hold of her hand and said, ‘I'm holding your hand.’ She lifted up one of her feet and said, ‘Hold my foot.’"

April 9, 1994: “The other day in a restaurant, Murray got the kids a plate of food from the salad bar. Caleb tasted something, and said, ‘Mommy, what is it in my mouth?’"

“Last night we were driving along and Rebecca asked, ‘Mom, when I were in your tummy, did I have shoes?’"

April 14, 1994: “A guy from church stopped by a little bit ago, and Rebecca asked why he had a car. I said that most people had cars. She said, ‘I thought ladies had cars and mans had trucks.’"   

This must have been her early southern training.

April 16, 1994:   “I came in where the kids were and Caleb said, ‘Mommy, look at my earring.’ He had a ring of toy keys hanging over his ear.”

“We were all sitting on the couch tonight, telling the story of Jonah. Suddenly Caleb told me, ‘God is a Spirit. And Jesus came alive again.’"

Obviously a Bible scholar at a young age.

“Rebecca's favorite color, usually, is pink. She says that when she goes to Heaven, and Jesus gives her a new body, she wants Him to give her pink eyes.”

April 26, 1994: “Sarah has started telling us secrets. She says she wants to tell us a secret in our ears, then she whispers, ‘I loves you.’"

Murray wrote these:

March 19, 1994: “Sarah was playing with photographs Murray was trying to sort, and he said, ‘Stop it, Sarah, you're making me crazy.’ Sarah said, ‘Making me crazy.’ He asked who's making her crazy. She said, ‘Daddy is. Daddy's making me happy.’"

“At Shoney's for breakfast this morning, just dad and the kids, just before we left the man beside us got up to leave and said, ‘Congratulations on having the best behaved kids I've seen in a long time.’"

April 25, 1994: “The other day Rebecca and Murray saw two dogs in a car, a white poodle and a little Chihuahua. The Chihuahua was yipping, sounding kind of similar to the squeaky deer noises Caleb makes. Rebecca said there was a dog and a baby deer in the car. She said the Chihuahua was a baby deer.”

“The other day Sarah saw Murray eating some chili and asked what he had. He said it was dog food, and gave her some. Later she said she wanted some more dog food, and she has asked for dog food since then when seeing food in a bowl.”

April 11, 1994:  “Murray has been telling the kids a series of stories he makes up as he goes along for a few months now. The stories are about a horse named pony who is the friend of two young children, Barney (who is a girl) and her brother Goofy.”

Okay, maybe some of those are just funny memories of Murray.

Friday, July 21, 2017

Just Like Having a Baby

“Look, he’s dangling his head over the side of the bed. Isn’t he cute?”

“I’ve probably got 200 pictures of him on my phone.”

“Aww, he’s so sweet.”

Our cat Eli will be a year old next week, and it is so like having a baby around the house.

Everything he does—including jumping on the table, sleeping on a dining room chair for a couple hours, stopping to sniff the dog, then walking on—it’s all just so delightfully cute.

Who hasn’t laughed about times when little kids receive an abundance of gifts for Christmas, and they prefer to play with the wrapping paper?

We discovered Eli loves paper bags. Not only does he bat at it or chase it, but, again like a baby, he might just crawl in and take a nap. Murray keeps one laying open on the kitchen floor for the little guy.

Like with a small child, we have to make sure the door is securely closed so he doesn’t get out. And, every time one of us goes out, we call, “Where’s the cat? Watch for the cat.”

Because he does love to go out, and he is so quiet and quick to sneak through the open door. The shelter we got him from calls it “door dashing.”

If he does get out, and we can’t find him, we’re all worrying.

What if he gets hit by a car? What if he doesn’t come back? What if he gets into a fight with another cat and gets hurt? What if he gets into something that makes him sick?

Might as well be worrying about a kid.

We’re hopeless.

“He’s taking a bath; how precious.”

“Oh, he’s asleep. So sweet.”

“Aww, he whimpered; Poor little guy.”

“Are you eating a snack, buddy? Good boy.”

“Hey, the cat just fell off the sideboard and landed in a bag of stuff.”

Okay, maybe we wouldn’t have laughed if that happened to a real baby.

Friday, July 14, 2017

Grace and Truth, John 3:16-36

This passage gives such a full picture of who God is.

Verse 16 is famous, assuring us that God loved us so much he sent his Son as a sacrifice to pay for our sin and bring us back in relationship with God.

Verse 17 has always been a comfort to me, emphasizing that Jesus’s purpose was not to condemn us but to save us.

What a beautiful expression of God’s amazing, gracious love for us.

God is also, without a doubt, a God of wrath. He will not relate to those whose sin has not been paid for.

Verses 18 and 36 clearly state that the salvation Jesus offers is only for those who accept and believe in him. Those who do not believe in and accept Jesus are still under God’s wrath and punishment.

This is scary, but it is a clear and true description of the full nature of God. There is no room to argue about it.

Fortunately, the love of God is so enormous that he seeks and woos us.

In verse 19, we are told that one of Jesus’s names is light. And if we accept his truth, we get to be a part of his light.

This chapter is also an excellent picture of the humility of John the Baptist. I have such respect for him.

John never claimed to be anyone except a person pointing to Jesus. He claimed no special position for himself, but said he needed to decrease in importance.

In verse 29, John explains that his own joy has comes from Jesus being glorified.

Thank you, Father, for this wonderful example of what a Christian can be like.