Tag: Christ

Accountability

Holding hands together, palms warm with praying, the way children do- urgent, necessary quick, like they truly believe. Chocolates are needed now, or Pa needs his leg repaired, or a bicycle needs a new bell. Or it shouldn’t rain at noon today, or we need a puppy. Now. A child persists, he believes, he sees it happening and will not leave. He tugs sleeve, he makes a mess with tears and lip, he may even bruise his toe reaching for the answer. Holding hands with You the way….

PiCourtesy Kaushiki Choudary

**”

… a child prays, asking Love, Joy, Peace, asking that Humanity finds You;

asking that wounds become a healing place and death lose its proverbial sting, in the fact of Your Face my God my God.

Asking like children do, I hold Your Hand, the One nailed at the Cross. I ask if I may- healing for Peta’s daughter and job for Diran, for hospitals and govts to work well and for me to never stop holding Your Hand even after my shopping list is done, esp after that.

For FMF Writers.

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Senses we do not know but use anyway

….the touch of experience, the taste of a new day

the sight of vision, the hearing of the muted, the sense of loss, the smell of hope,

the unseen tomorrow….these and some

stir my ‘heart ‘ – ah that organ of awareness we’ve placed somewhere ‘tween head & rib.

And oh when my spirit opens itself to pray…

what words could describe the Sensory of Prayer? We as a Race are sands shifting in the growing Light of Dawn,

Mike Haupt, thank you for Pic!

the growing Life of Light in my dark: the sight of things I touch in my core, by a power they call Faith…. what is that described? Must I describe it, for who? Why write, share moments broken from ‘accepted’ norms, why care, why heal? Why kneel, why weep joy,

Why bless for curses; why Love for hate, why rejoice in suffering, what is this; hell heaven, Christ, Lucifer and the Spirit of every man and woman and child – running deep from what we hide, deny

Like the spirit inside that keels, needs to pray

The Incredible Power of Belief

Negatives stem from disbelief at the State of Peace. And their reason comes from a space so deeply ingrained in us, it takes a super normal event for some of us to believe in the Impossible.

🌿🍂☘️🍁

I’ve always been fascinated by leaves : fat leaves, thin shrunk ones lopping off branches or in the ground, going in the wind. The older these things get, the more they call, they remind me of some thing….

With the pandemic and ensuing ‘plantdemic’ as a local journalist called it today, I too fell headlong into the flora of life. NJ my husband pampered our inner child: we got us succulents and palm. My sis brought home baby vine. Easter gave us Fern and Ivy, creepers, climbers, fabulous darlings with leaves and none of them dried. I hadn’t noticed but when we visited a local farm, I collected these jewels👇🏼pressing them in an old diary:

came handy at our Haven Fellowship fasting & prayer. (More on dried leaf below).

For me it was a fast from Negativity👈🏽 the thing is in my matrix like a mother.

Though, if you met me and we talked over lemon tea you’d leave with the sun coming out your ears, for all my miracles:

the time my heart got physically healed. And my spine. And how that one onion finds me when I need it, oh our beautiful blind son, and our daughters’ songs with the Psalmist in it, and yet before the sun can set I have a new worry surfacing harmlessly like an ant out of nowhere.Ask NJ.(We went for our second vaccine and it hurt nothing, it hurt nothing so much I really and totally wondered whether she gave me that Vaccine at all. Was it a trick. They were short on it too, weren’t they? NJ had to not only convince me he personally saw it, but that he had a pic to prove it).

It happened again these past 21 days as I aimed at kicking Negatives out. Not easy.

Being one who thinks in images, I used the dried leaves from farm: each to symbolize a need that needed a healing.

Biblically, ‘leaves’🍃 go for healing: Revelation 22:2, NIV: “down the middle of the great street of the city. On each side of the river stood the tree of life, bearing twelve crops of fruit, yielding its fruit every month. And the leaves of the tree are for the healing of the nations.”

During our 21day fast, as I kept away from Negativity, I took out my farm pressed leaves, stuck one on each page, with a request for a specific need. Twas officially Repair Time.

As we went from one day to the next it was the toughest exercise, to steer away from sagging thoughts/ nail them at the Cross/ ask Christ to heal; to each query He gave me two choices: to succumb, or host His healing.

I realized how deep the Human psyche can doubt the power of invisible healing, all because we tend to gravitate towards memos from our monsters: 👥🗣

Tobiah who follows me via childhood, calling me this & that publicly. Sanballat snorting with self righteousness. Christ was asking me to pray healing on Tobiah & Sanballat. Yeah that was two nice dried leaves. I half heartedly prayed ; twas like praying for Covid to heal of itself! There was no external change except that a new emotion arrived, a wish that they’d really meet Jesus.

While the day’s prayer went up, so did my foreboding dark cloud that followed me from room to room. That cloud had hung in my hair, had drooped my lip and haggard’d my heart. Now it lifted.

I ran out of leaves but began finding one new leaf every morning in our balcony. Was God saying I had one more area to sort? Yes! Every morning a new dried leaf was there, and the same kind of leaf I’d collected at the farm!

Now we near 21 days this Sunday, I have more Drying Darlings than I’ll need, and He’s reminding me that there are needs out there, not just my own personal ‘negatives’ but a nation full.

As I write this my daughter gives me three she found in the floor.

These are rose leaves from our wedding anniversary flowers. 35 years, yes quite something. (Allow me to indulge: That’s a Trinity Reminder that we need to totally allow Them to work via our tiny existence…)

Teach me Lord. My heart trips with new emotions for my country & 550 tribes, for an Earth in a Time like never before.

This Post was Titled the way it was, because without Belief it is no use praying at all and expecting any answer;

I’m looking at every Persona of Faith in the Bible- Moses and Abraham and Paul and Peter ….none asked for cars and houses or jewelry … they stalked Red seas, slung Goliaths, slammed Pharaoh, brought down Manna, prayed rain …for others‘ welfare. They didn’t care whether they were healed or not, they didn’t bother to stop at personal imprisonment or stoning. They blest their jailer, and yelled joy till prison chains and floors hiccuped with an earthquake. Some of them died with a smile in their lips, no dying man or woman can fake that. That’s an inner fire that can warm the coldest day. The fire of belief.

We have these two choices, we believe in nothing, or something. Either way we believe. Whichever we choose, will exert its power over us. There’s Death, and there’s Life.

Beloved, choose Life?

Not just another day!

As our nation reels and staggers among seen and unseen factors, can all the kings horses and all the kings men put things back together again? Before we can get used to the day’s Papers, the next day dawns with worse stats. This is unreal, but like one person said, “..it was a disaster waiting to happen.” It is a war on everything we’ve known.

Today we prayed that we would really pray, set aside 21 days asking the Lord to hear our voice, for our people, our leaders, our healing as nations, as states, homes, families, individuals. 21 days of a fast from everything that holds me back: negative thoughts, distracted mind prone to worry..

all that. Remembering who God is, and what He means when He says, “If my people who are called by my Name will humble themselves and pray, I will forgive and heal their land…”

Took this pic- our tiny saplings grow into little plants, as a nation plummets…. where?

Moki, an acquaintance will laugh at this post: not everyone believes in God. And then not everyone believes God answers prayers. And then some believe in a God of disaster. When He speaks He is a mere Judge. He is, but He’s also the One that lets new skies each day lift my heart. Am spending the next 21 tugging at the hem of His garment, seeking Grace.

Yeah, mid– storm, sailors do cry “Mayday!”

This morning my heart is curiously still: yeah I’m seeking His face. He’s brought us through worse. Covid and poor disaster management is not the worst ill there is. A worse one stares us in the face- the soul of man, woman and child that lives alone, without the Friendship of the One who made us all, one Who waits to meet us here before it is too late.

FMF Writers

Sermons from my ‘Jacquemontia’!

Years ago my husband NJ had gifted me a bouquet of blue silk roses for our anniversary, but later a relative wanted it for her wedding bouquet. I didn’t have the heart to say No, nor could find another just like it. What followed was an endless search for the blue roses, in every shop and city we could think of, yes even after Amazon happened but no sign of any blue beauties.

Then this year as we dropped our daughter off at a lane across from nice shop called Green Tag complete with Einstein looking Owner who could sniff out our need; “What exactly d’you want?” Einstein asked his serious eyes lit up with joy. We mumbled. He understood and left us to ourselves and his collections of fern, ZZ, Water babies, Palm giants & dwarves, Bird of paradise wild stalk and then I saw her, clustered at the roof of Einstein’s green house. Not one bloom on her but she called at me.

Jacquemontia.” Einstein whispered with reverent awe.

Back home I looked up the name. Oh my. Such a big name for wee creeper in my tiny balcony. Then the flowers arrived. Blue yeah. Not roses, not silk, but real. One, then two, three, four. And every bud a promise of restoration. Not just make believe but the real thing. A real planting of the Creators Words coming to Life. Our daughter Vihan took this pic and with every new bud I’m thinking on how He restores, with no limits, in ways we cannot imagine. I’m staring at His fingers writing sermons in little Jacquemontia, all for my tiny window on heaven.

Christ never ceases to stun me. Never.

This Good Friday

Yep, did it. A tribute I always wanted to offer to the One & only Yeshuva!

Wasn’t easy doing “Via Dolarosa” but for a still moment, I felt me standing there on that deadly route, watching as the gory trek uphill happened….. for you, for me:

this One who would do all that for a planet full of us. A Saviour to savor! A word to mull in this week, while we each go through changing life styles, in an earth season like never before. Am so grateful for the Cross and how It changes me, every single day, every single day, redeeming my time, life, existence. Am trusting you get that too. This need to savor the cross, relish cherish the Friend that’d lay His life down ‘for you, for me…’

https://youtu.be/4qBQ9JuOYZo

SAVOR

There’s another word in it

Prompt: Observant

I always look forward to this Prompt from Friday Five minuters, look forward to it with a relish I knew growing up with tonsillitis and was allowed ice cream only on sacred times of wellbeing! Ah well. Thankyou FMF writers, for keeping me in touch with words,mine & yours. Life gets hectic- beautiful yes, hazardous often in these days of virus and co., but creation never stopped. Sam my musician friend’s beard has gotten longer. Binda seems to heal from cancer, our friendly neighborhood pigeon gets bolder by the day, the children are taller, the sky feels more velvet, yesterday I caught a few drops of rain- it was cool and quenching in my skin, this morning I could not wake up the 5 am I usually do for my morning Quiet, but I kneeled within, in my heart, in bed, cushioning my spirit in Him, as He re- created me for a brand new day. Still in bed I open mail from FMF, and blog. Something I’ve done only twice. Blogging before brushing my teeth. Its a different odd feeling. Like breaking a rule, like smiling with your mouth closed? Maybe. Blogging is a whole cave of possibilities in a beach full of pirates, hehe. I see the world differently horizontally : the Word Observant hauls up sensitivities to look at life with new perspective: as a Server, a Waiter of creativity. A servant of It. Not obstruct its way. Not mess with its Maker, not shut eyes to the possibilities of the day. Here I want to haul self up and stare at the things waiting today:Wait. Ask. Pray. Serve as I watch, observe our Creator’s pathways in my day.

The Greatest Human Need*

You see It* in naked mouths, in burdened markets, in death cells & cathedrals; we all await the same thing.

I saw It last week in a wee apartment & momma with sick child,

saw It crying in the Street yesterday outside a Cafe: a man sat in Crossword puzzles; his face sunk. A couple in phones, not touching shoulders like Love sits; she refused cake, he shrugged, got a green mango ice cream, the silence only stopped now and then when the happy eyed waiter grinned. He grinned as he walked between polka-dotted giant cups perched in high wooden open cabinets and acrylic fern;

we diced snakes & ladders at this Cafe called Narcos. Hmm. No drugs, just us in chilled sweaters and hungry for chat as mothers and daughters can be when needing to know we are loved – no conditions, no time to comb hair. There was that need, to taste a satisfaction…..

a diamond waiting to be sharved (just made that word) ;

It….is like Water waiting to Fall, like a Niagara e’en. We say, What. That….! But we turn into terrorists at Traffic messes, we become brooding hens over interruptions, we snarl at headlines, and run like headless chicken when ignored. Oh and this – we absolutely evangelize on the meanness of God when there’s an earth disaster, then we build Cathedrals of mistrust….

It was there yesterday at Happa Stationers‘- guy in dull red cap o’er few flat locks, he strung them over his shoulder, his face dead-fire, as we traded notes for exam accessories for my Kitsy,

she with eyes like stars over an unknown future. Some people are Bearers of Good. They go like a Lighthouse searching the dark:

Clover grass ‘neath step at Stationers.
Pic Courtesy : Kitsy Ruth.

****

we retrace steps back home, the sun is warm in our cold toes. Yea an Indian cold. Cold enough to shiver my pigeon;

am scared to read the papers – they lie face down in a jute bag under chair turned to the trees outside, as if asking these skies for Noah’s rainbow;

today’s unopened Times sun bathes next to Rosie, with her 50+ tiny spiky leaves and rose pouting…..

like us Humans rearing for relief.

We’ve schooled our Self to hiss like serpents in gardens of Grace. We rap our own knuckles if we fall prey to God’s Love. We skid, stop stare like rabbits caught in headlights, stammering- afraid to give in to Humanity’s best-masked need:

(Terrified of what we do not know, what we do know holds us safe among ‘relatables; eaters of edible bad news);

I saw It Staring at me via a Cartwoman selling tomatoes. No Cross tattoo in her throat like some of us Church goers host, no prayer beads except rich busy fingers at brinjal and coriander leaf, like she were a branch off Him who made her veggies! As if there was nothing to fear. Yeah her purpose to be the Bearer of Grace.

Yeah I can talk of Love and Valentine trophies all day but if I didn’t receive this Thing, I wouldn’t know how to give it. ‘IT’ …a 5 lettered word one sees best on a Hill far away.

Soon we’ll be doing Lenten fasts and Anthems to woo It back in our lanes, aye Grace– lurking in corners like a lost Lover, a jealous one, aching to forgive, bless, heal, restore, love:

aching that we believe *Its reach, Its depth, Its width, Its unfathomable Power to raise the Human Spirit from the Store Rooms of hell.

Yea, yes- the most under-rated, least accessed, the Greatest Human need there is- Grace:

Love always follows. No matter the odds.

Grace : unmerited divine assistance given to humans for their regeneration or sanctification. b : a virtue coming from God. c : a state of sanctification enjoyed through divine assistance.http://www.merriam-webster.com › grace

The Stranger

He wore long curls under a hair band and old fashioned jeans with wide trousers folded in a hem that half sagged as if unsure of the Times. Sunlight fell in his uncombed locks needing a wash but it didn’t matter. It had an educated look about it, casual disgrace. It was the funeral of a dear brother,

we stood around the sunny open air chapel Gate#1, wanting to weep but the sun shone hard. Tall trees above us burned lemon gentle yellow. “It is well with my soul,” we sang. The lyrics fell into us, there’s no other way to say it. Funerals of good people do this to me.

The man with the locks stood like a statue two feet from where I leaned on a pillar. He hadn’t moved; his shoulders crouched with either fatigue or sorrow. He must be a close relative? The chapel steamed with hushed love.

VJ looked like Peace in his casket strung with garlands, wreaths, roses, jasmine bouquet, posies, petals in the floor around – it wasn’t like a mourning, it was a Graduation. A cousin broke down as he paid tribute, a niece, a sister, a classmate, colleagues, more wreaths- they crowded now in the floor like an unruly garden. No one stirred, light shifted.

Two hours had gone by, the man with long curls stood like a rock his arms curled in at the fist. I lost sight of him then saw him again at the burial – he got as close as he could then moved politely away hugging himself, why was I looking at him. Everyone grieved soft. Polite smiles, and gentle farewell. The sky, a stark baby blue covered everything in more Light;

He moved closer to where we stood with VJ’s wife and daughter, then he hugged VJ’s wife with burrowing sobs. The daughter didn’t know who he was, he didn’t fit in with any of the groups here- work teams, relatives, church folk. The sobs mutated, no one else was crying that way. We had cultured tears, in the back of our eyes and throats. VJ was that kind of guy, he wouldn’t have wanted noise, or loud wishes. He was a tree planted by streams of living waters. A tree that bore fruit in quiet neat ways. Not spluttering in the earth, but growing gently.

The stranger caught my eye for a quick moment as he stood back and wiped his tears; his hands were large, sunburnt, like his face with wide cheek bones and thick hair held back in fine wire band. Then he hung back a bit under tall trees swaying in occasional gust of breeze. February felt hot and cool at the same time in the cemetery with hundreds of memoirs of Life by our feet; not a place to discuss things in decibels. You wanted to rest, exhale.

The man wore a red and blackish windcheater over a once white Tee. Not 6 ft tall; wide shouldered, lowered gaze in the walk where others gathered to say things to VJ’s family, ‘visit us,‘ that kind of thing. The man lingered, not looking at anything in particular, then he slow-turned to leave.

Later we heard no one knew him at all. What was he, who? Perhaps…

a person blessed by VJ. Maybe a wanna be musician whom VJ heard out. Maybe he gave him some kind of help, he had that look about him: gratitude and pain.

Or maybe, maybe he was a chronic funeral crasher, identifying best among sadness. He seemed at peace in tears, not awkward in Grief’s ways. Maybe I’m reading too much into this, but I’ve seen them- some of us humans who fit in between lives of others, and we identify best in pain. Here we can weep out loud and not be misunderstood. Here there is solace, here there are grounds to linger in, in awe at loss. At farewells, at sermons that whisper at the Other Life, at the kind of Love that happens where we stare at that edge of the coffin. We are all one here, here there is no caste, creed, other separations of Humanity. Here we are one at this place where Life gazes at death, how futile even that is- when the spirit has gone ahead. It was apparent- VJ was not there. His absence a presence so loud you wanted to applaud his transition, his earth days done so well, and him now with God whom he worked for all his life.

The stranger’s face followed me home; we talked briefly about him. Then I had a headache and curled up in bed, but had to spill my thoughts here, blog. Perhaps:

between the Living and the Dead is a Race of Humanity belonging to neither (the living nor the dead); the corridors between the Two narrow down to one fine line and there they are- a People that identify best in places like Here, where pain is an acceptable emotion.

Perhaps. Though it is most likely this was a person VJ helped in some significant way, he was so like Christ, gentle steel and hard work, not choosing to be called Reverend; his songs hauntingly beautiful like his smile that said all. A man of few words, almost shy of being heard too much, except of the Christ he loved. Just the kind of man who reached out to strangers with no name…

Now this.

(Few years ago VJ’s wife had been hit by a racing biker, hit bad enough, head injury, fractures. VJ did not breathe one word against him, no law suit, nothing. ‘The brother had something on his mind, surely. Else the accident wouldn’t have happened. I asked the Lord to bless him..” VJ said in our home months after the accident, not one trace of anger in him).

Now I’m thinking what if the stranger was that biker; but my thoughts they do run wild.

Photo Credit : Zach Taiji

From our home to yours this Christmas 2020!

Part of our Fellowship’s zoom candle light carols night, this was our fam’s medley of old carols and new harmonies improvised; wishing you a blessed day today and always; may the Lord of Light, Peace, Joy & true Love fill your days with His Song, all of now and the days to follow, stay precious!

The State of Maya-Mai’s safety

Maya Mai my baker friend has fewer cakes to bake this year- there’s not that many people around she says maybe we’re all feeling safer with home made breads, maybe she should price down her bakes she asks?
Maybe smaller cakes ….maybe she should sell tomato pickles,

There’s not that many people outdoors this year, & how dyou sanitise icing –
She asks,
Maybe I should sell sanitizers, but that’s not my area of gifting, she laughs
my friend Maya Mai has the face of a waiting child, for gifts she knows she will miraculously receive end of day, she fills with light like dawn after midnight,

I love how she is when thinking on miracles: its all she has she says, not her thoughts, but her miracles. Her first child was born that way, her second and her third. And her husband – he was healed of his cough, the jobs he lost and found; how they built this two- roomed house, with all its blessings she counts them on the knuckles of her small lined hands, and in the bones of her toes ….
one time she counted them on beads she wears on her neck, all her miracles, one by one.

Last evening she said she ran out of beads, to count her miracles on. She pulled out old shells she had as a child running in the beach every dawn in the pockets of her shirt, her skirt held so she could hold her treasure without spilling it in the sand slope back home ..


my friend Maya still has those little and large shells, hump backed curled , spiraling cockels, baby conch, she hangs in rows between corridor and kitchen, for counting miracles she’s received even as tailor of her children’s clothes – hand me downs that need hems taken up or down,
Her children are 14, 12 , 10; her husband went to heaven one Tuesday on the 11th , 8 months ago,


her lips move with tears in them; if I’m looking for shadows in the valley of fear, they are not there, cuz it seems like Maya Mai my friend the baker woman talks with angels around the curtain of shells between her corridor and the oven,
counting every last blessing, the stack of clothes clips she found in a cardboard box , the new shoes her youngest child received as reward for walking a neighbors pet dog; for dew that falls in potted rose plant, and for hot water in her cold tap this morning that fell like kisses from heaven

in her face,

that shines like the sun. I’m trying hard not to stare – she counting miracles, and not knowing how to sell cakes baked last night, she giving them to me for my family and not taking a ruppee, insisting, I take home too, her tomato pickle no one may buy, that pickle red and warm like the sunlight in her eyes, as they dance with satisfaction.

I give her my well- wrapped little packet of blue silk blouse and sari, I’ve not worn it once! She opens it like I’ve given her acres of blue sky, unfolds it like stories to consume, drapes it on one thin boney shoulder, so fragile – its blades snap each time she raises her arm, she’s wound the sari ’round her waist, the size of the palm of my hand,

she winds it round her 5 feet frame, then stands 10 feet tall in corridor between her stove and miracles exploding in her eyes like stars o’er Bethlehem. I’m speechless I’m staring wide open. This is how beauty looks, this is how beauty prays, its face unafraid, like a sky with no night. I’m trembling shaken

wishing I’d got her somethings new, my blouse a size too large but Maya Mai clucks her tongue inside her chin, she’s a seamstress! She can take my blouse an inch in,
nah what’s matching thread? Yes,she has a stack of threads of white from old hems,

she’s bunched the sari in the waist of her saggy pajamas. “Don’t laugh,” Maya Mai cries for joy, pleats of sari tripping her arthritic feet with spurs in left foot, she swings on her right, the shirt beneath her silk a gaudy white, gaudy with turmeric oil stains from the pickles she just made


I’m not afraid , she says, and I can tell, oh I can. She’s full of confidence, its a fire. It wraps her pickles, o’er brown paper from her child’s old text book from last year. A thousand questions crowd the space in my throat and behind my teeth but what can speak in the presence of defeat of fear? This thing is bigger than David’s Goliath, this state of Maya Mai’s safety is no lie, it is that sword of Goliath taking off his own head, it is the wall of Jericho crashing down itself, it is Daniels lions purring in that hungry den that could’ve ripped him before he fell in, it is the fact of the Red sea spilling sideways in obedience, it is the Rod of Moses demolishing Pharoahs serpents;

it is that secret place of the shadow of the most high, abiding in the presence of the Almighty,

it is one tiny baby against all of Herod’s men, it is the blaze of that Star over a Manger an’

It is the God of my friend Maya Mai, her leaning on Him, turmeric oil stains on her shirt beneath my blue silk blouse, one I never wore because it was for this woman with the acres of heaven in her eyes.

I want to hold her hand say thank you but how do you shake hands with a miracle? How d’you hold a star, how dyou embrace a woman Daniel, how touch a Moses’ rod that swiped out Pharaohs serpents …. how d’you pick up the pieces of a broken Jericho wall , how d’you keep account,

except count them one by one,in the knuckles of your fist, in the bones of your toes …

I want to go home and be Maya Mai, she walks me to her low door put together with thermocol and cardboard and a red ribbon from Christmases few years ago, and I’ve not seen the joy in her face in any place else, its a wreath of peace
from the God of Christmas and Golgotha and The Resurrection, I saw You today Lord, in the face of my friend the baker woman.

Polished Arrow

Hidden, in His quiver, you thought you were forgotten. You’re there for that one choice moment, polished chosen arrow;

time & tide sifted, ground, broke you – seasoned your edge- today you think you live in the shadow of others; ha, know this, you are one set apart,

Unsplash

***

…for a Time such as this, for a day in a thousand, for a task you alone can do. He knows you by name, you are Designer-ware, made for specificity. You are needed, blest, crucial important, you mayn’t see it Lil arrow,

you are deadly to the foe, deadly to the very thing trying to destroy you. It is time to go out, fearless. You are a force to reckon with, a Season all your own. Go on polished arrow, fly in His skies, shine!

….

(Isaiah 49)

December 2020: Startled by Grace.

Did not have one nice thing to say on my blog and then I see this Beauty from Instagrammer Louise_ness whose lens capture of blossom in hedge and porcelain made me want to post some! She is gracious. I say Thankyou thinking of her silver birch wreath ’round papier mâché deer, and get a hearted reply,

sure there are people that are kind to strangers, but after a year of dodging viruses in waves, oh sanitising each other to insane levels, I’m blessed to look at Louise_ness’s last roses of summer,

and am suddenly startled by Grace.

Louise_ness1’s papier mâché deer; love her little spider base of deer neck, with whom she made an agreement to let him just be….

Her deer is made from trees (paper), the roses, foliage like frosted dew crystallising everyday colors and yes, it makes me want to cry for beauty we know we have if we will tolerate each others’ Lil spaces in our spaces, like Louise_ness’s visiting spider who she let be in the picture without destroying him. Aye, Grace.

Louise_ness
https://instagram.com/louise_ness1?igshid=1khu6ljo3w7bh

Another friend and I got chatting today. One hour down the conversation, we agree that the greatest gift humans could give each other is Mercy: another word drenched in attributes we all know we must know and give and be.

Mercy & Grace. Two words our news men maynt have thought of much as they reeled out reports of this & that, this year: two words that sit in my ears tonight, like earrings too expensive to not be heavy. Grace, Mercy. Just to think on, feels heavy. Mercy for those who need it, and need it bad, or probably do not deserve it, thats Grace.

Where’s this Post going? What is December going to be like?

Will Mona Mayi dish out Christmas catering like they always did? Will we all major on Christmas/ new year ensembles, will we host another papier star? Will Susa the Physician call in all her colleagues and street vendors to high tea in her villa with mango trees lit up like Christmas evergreens ? Will everyone have rice and gravy, blankets and candy, @Christmas party- give aways to footpath people off St.Marks’?

It hurts to ask some questions : but I’m thinking how Grace looks on any given day, or Mercy.

Another 31 days and 2021 will be here, with all her engines gunning for the next 365!

This December I’m praying we will give each other space to be accepted and loved as Christ of Christmas did. Uncle Chandu hated that word Christmas. Said it wasn’t in the Bible. No one disputed that, they just ignored his mutters and gave him a good new dhoti and colorful shirt. By Christmas eve he was a melting pot of love and the Nativity, too.

Look at Grace long enough, and there will be the scents of summer all through anything ahead. There will be acts of mercy, and they will wreath your front door with colors like stashed sunlight for cold hearts. After all is said and done, and we are bone weary for trying to make peace not war, we perhaps can rest in the fact that we are loved by the God of Grace, ay e’en be startled by the Grace of God.

Pathways there be many: the which I take be good or naught, I scarce can say as yet, though this I know Someone walked this path and tread a forest out so my feet could dis- a wearie be, for this I’m grateful Gentle Shepherd who leads, leads me e’ery year, leads me be. (Anon)

After every ritual of war or peace, there is,still that hunger…

This Post prompted by FMF Writers:

..the need to feel unafraid again. We’ve cast our vote against the thing that causes insecurity….

after all of that, if we have not got our own person in sync with peace, we will still be afraid, we will need hope and the energy that rises from freedom from temporary sunshine.

PiCredit Joe Ciciarelli

Some of us do pilgrimages, we do rituals, we dance our prophecies of pain away,

and some of us do the humble thing of kneeling to pray: not that we can be perfect for doing it, but oh the relief of seeing how tiny we are in a universe of divine intelligence. Here nothing shakes our Unshakeable Kingdom within; for what can separate us from infinite existence that does not depend on economy, on professional stamina, on legal majority, or socially acquired sweetness. Here, in the gaze of a Christ who defies all else, here I rest, arrested by a certain non – need of material anchors that can spiral me down!

These are my thoughts this nice November morning; what happens when you pray, you ask? For me it centers my core, it shakes away all that hinders freedom. So I did not get this and that, we lost some feet, but when you wait in prayer you and I , we rise on eagles wings, renewed strength to run and not be weary, walk and not faint.

There will always be human need for strength & security. And there will always be this human leaning towards God, much as we might deny its leaning.

Looking ahead to days of nestling in that Unshakeable Kingdom within!

That summer I spent 40 days in the Red sea …

& other Places flowing thick off a beige covered Best seller that wouldn’t let me go. From Eden to hell, from Cain’s mess to Parables snuck like jewels in the dark, this Book held me by my irises.

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PicCredit Unsplash

I was 13, I’d read every book there was to read in our school library. I’d re-read some old Readers Digest in the musty bookshelves where Dad worked by the sea; now he grinned as I sat hunched over these Beauties. This Bible was all mine, but:

no one had warned me of its power to grab.

Read it,” they advised like It were necessary medication for a virus. Yes, they warned, you read it, you sleep well at night. No ghosts and spooks would bother with a Bible Reader. They never really told me of its teeny mustard armies that smashed mountains, Its valleys flooded neck high with Psalms; It’s Blood flowing crimson in my insides, not just for healing and goodies but for Its absolute value as irreplaceable Present Resurrective serial Power …..

PicCredit Unsplash

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The Bible dared me to rise above asking It for quick answers to maths problems at school; It looked away when I had to have a toenail removed, as if Pain were a Date I’d understand, oh need to understand for future reference.

I’m just a child,” I said to my Bible’s somber covers, and now and then I caught It sigh a sigh of relief, like It were asking me to stay that way. That it would hurt if I grew too much into borrowed intelligence. I did my best, but shoe sizes changed. Life was like that, everyone said.

I agreed, but reality was a trick. Is.

PicCredit Unsplash

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Reality is wearing some else’s shoes because we often follow others’ short cuts. Reality is a lil pumpkin that cuts out its insides making believe it is not what it is.

The Bible went through many translations in my many shelves but It stalked my desert with me; It ran me into an Oasis here and there, till I went like a Deer panting away from dead seas to Living Waters;

It hurt that I hurt. It was there …. A Still small voice refusing to give in to my worry that It was just another nice Bestseller….aye sold out to every language in earth.

PicCredit Unsplash

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The Bible was News. Every morning It was my Dove with tender new Olive leaf, every noon and night and dawn It became my Warrior, fighting for me, against my own mind.

It is more than Page and Info. More than medicine and prophecy of good. It is Breathing Messages from my raw naked God plunging past my external rib into an interior I saw…

because the time had come to look and see and know that I was more than flesh and blood, I had a thing in me that beat to the rhythm of a Life beyond our everyday pursuit of peace and joy.

It rinsed my insides out and tripped me on a Rollercoaster with demons and archangels till I knew that I knew what we know deep within our absolute unlying awareness: the fact that Lies are often the best pointers to the Truth!

Life had better be more than just survival and healings & successes of all our job interviews and processes, and aches. These very aches were my servants, they served well. If I were healed of every ill and lived in a lotus pond with zero needs… would I have bothered about anything besides instantly being made comfortable again? Here my little knots are a mosaic of an Intelligence too much for me to even pretend to know.

The Bible is my irreplaceable Guide, the Fingerprint that writes me into Its tale of love and hate and peace and war but how the greatest of these is Love …. not so I can get better shoes but that I could feel it in my bones to love even a little like Christ would when He sees another with a wounded spirit.

Often healing is not even an option, love an extravagance. Often the best we can do is forgive the unforgivable/ bless when cursed or choose to react with compassion/ acceptance…

nothing in the world teaches me that like the Cross in the Bible. Nothing else teaches me to reach down and wash another’s feet, oh receive a slap with compassion.

To this day, this Mega Page Turner, leaves me asking for more…

here I defeat bears and lions and goliath, here Daniels den is a landmark of praise; oh here a tomb is empty, its mine….here I too rise and walk thru walls of disbelief.

There are days I do not visit It: and those are the times I am deaf and dumb and blind.

………

Why the Bible is the Best Selling and most persecuted Book in the history of human existence.

What am I?

Not even who, but what am I, the boy asked looking at the floor, his eyes flat with nothingness. What had happened here, would stay with him till the end of that day. And when it spilled it was like lava, every word singed our ears. There had been self abuse and total lack of feeling to anyone even himself. He could not trust himself. He believed everything negative ever said against him.

I’d been brought up to a level of humility necessary to be good civilized people, but this beat all civil existence. He would not believe anyone could love him and he stared through my face when I said God loved him. He was not more than 24, and looked old. Old eyes and skin. He’d cut himself, done drugs, done things he felt nothing to reveal. He had died inside. They’d told him he was a waste, a shame. I didnt know how to reach him, but prayed that night.

The next day, he was smiling… it was near dusk and inmates were getting ready to go indoors. Someone had talked him out of his mess. I never knew who it was, but he told me in no uncertain terms that he believed God lives and loved him. I must’ve stared open mouthed at him because he laughed out loud and looked so happy. Only God could have worked that miracle. Twas like he was being held by a super power. I will never forget how that looked. That’s how it looks to be held by a living God. It looked fearless, free and unarguably happy!

And I’m thinking now, what are we, what’ m I, but Beloved of God…

FMF WRITERS,

Friend of sinners

***

Listen close and you will hear a bus, a neighbour’s drill….. yea was recorded in a tiny home studio, at a time of transits. This Album was worked off a Psr 630(keys), and my undying love for Theatre: it is perhaps who I am without choir costume and acquired taste… just all my voice & human pulse. It is the rough of pavement psalms and His pursuing love; (thankyou ABBA Father for being Who You Are: creative, generous, incredible!)

my daughter insisted we put it out again(released 2004,Mumbai). We even found lost Master tracks…. thanks hon risking this one on your channel💔

I met a woman in a Mumbai slum: a woman suffering abuse. She asked me to pray for her: I asked her what she called Jesus; she said, “Isa”.
https://youtu.be/Gd8CVS2g3NI

***

Often we might go barefoot in trails where we are in the enlarged presence of Other Intelligence. Here we strip protocol, and might hear a Reply. Here I knelt unashamed of my crying need for Christ alone: for Yeshua who gave His life for us, for me…

for the local prostitute who walked around our bus stop. She’d mock me with an inscrutable stare; oneday I saw her in an outfit I gave away to our building watchman for ‘his wife back home’ he said;

now this street girl knew it was my dress she wore, she watched me recoil, watched my righteous indignation. And then I sensed God watch me: my superior brows rise in ‘whoa’ as if the rest of us mortals were such perfection!

From my album ‘Isa’ remixed last week! This one I describe as Nazarene Narratives, stories of the Touch of God.

This one is because of that street girl.

*****

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Harvest of Tears

it goes down the cheek of our fields,

prayers like rain, like tears, these kisses of heaven?

I couldn’t have guessed this was a Garden. What.

Blossoms of Your Breath. Your Breath.

Oceans of Words, reaching in me, in me.

As if I were just ONE child You had, and wherever I went You followed / saw me.

Nothing between us, just Your Tears falling in my face. Thought they were mine!

You seeking all of us. All of us. What a harvest that be. All our soul safe in Your gaze. For this I pray everyday. Every single day… for Your harvest of Tears like kisses of heaven. Heaven.

All pics from Unsplash.

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Thankyou Father God for the Love You bestow on us that we be called Yours. Thank You for silhouettes of You everywhere. Most of all thank You for all the things about You I’ve learned in the dark, nothing compares with that. All the seasons of ‘festivity’ I’ve ever had, pale next to what You’ve harvested in my winters! I owe You my life, my all. Father God in Jesu’s name, I thank You.

___________________________________

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Stay blest, stay precious.

(All pics, courtesy Unsplash)

Here, nothing is ‘yours’ or ‘mine’ anymore….

PiCredit Unsplash

***

…not in this day and time.

Stop pretending it’s not still there: that selfish way we lived our lives, vying, clamoring for attention- suspicious of each other, or plain scrambling for power. Stop it, it hurts us. It hurts you. It’s not just old mode now, its the naked truth of how humans have lived between plagues and wars and holocausts. Then we huddle and forget our differences for a bit. Then we talk of God and love and peace. As if that weren’t our birthright. We forgot who we were. We went into humanism. We forgot how we never made us. We never even knew how we died or where we went but we knew so much of how to hurt each other as if we were gods. We lost manners, we thought we were tiers of castes with Touchabilities and Untouchabilities. Yea we forgot there was a darkness so dark it could try obliterate the light in us. We put out each others’ iris. We talked of how there was no Light. It was all just a trail of burnt stars. That’s all we knew to say. So we sinned and glorified that. We killed God in every form and erased His memos with quarts of water we couldnot even make. That’s how far we all got before this pandemonium took its scepter and ruled us into neat queues of waiting dead, & dying dead, so now get this. You and I can talk on about all this just being here every century, these plagues. And in between we can still host our power parties and roost our joke- clubs about a Man in the Sky. But look deep. .. we are scareder. … yes… that’s a word now… than we’ve ever been. We laugh harder than before, we try our old power games, we are desperate to get back to when we could size each other up with our judgements as if our own vices did not matter, as if there were no God who could see through our shivers. But this. These times…..

these days are Lighthouses in the dark. We can mutter all we want about each other, we can back chat and we can try sit prettier than each other, who are we fooling? It’s a shared planet, whats mine is yours. These routes and air. This earth and God’s Love. Shut your eyes wide to the visible mortal, open it to the Invisible heartbeat within our rib. We are more than mortal, we are children of a Cross too much to bear on our own. Remember Christ. Remember Christ.

2 Corinthians 4:18. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.

FMF writers thankyou for being there every week

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A palmful of summer rain

Gojay dreamed of a well by the acre of hardened land his father had inherited from his father; a well with water in it. That monsoon after the last rain cloud was blown away, he dug little shallows in his fathers ungiving field, but there was no water. That summer and the next.

One weekend there was water in the local borewell, water enough to drink a palmful and then he was chased away by the queue of local women with pots. The following weekend it rained. It rained like it were asking him to come out. Ir rained in the coir cot outside his hut, it rained through the roof, it rained in Mai’s hair and in Maimai’s, his grandma’s….

It fell in the streets and mud steps. It washed away Boka’s wall, it swamped Keju’s hay, it felled two old banyan trees. They loved it then hated it, but that time Gojay had prayed for the first real time for rain, and now he shivered.

Yes God was real; He had fallen rain in Gojay’s eyes like tears. As he walked around the village in the torrent, the boy stopped and stared at a local cross he had always ignored, not because its iron was bent out of shape, but because in the rain, the Cross shone. Anush his friend said it was the way light reflected on wet iron surfaces, but all that and the lightning! It made Gojay want to say thankyou. For the rain, and for the way he was stopped in his tracks, in the rain, in the marketplace, opp. Teraki Saheeba palace ruins, in the street in the rain where the metal cross seemed to seep at him. It tore his quiet out of him. It wreaked a smile on him. For the first time in all his life, young Gojay felt everything was alright. Oneday he’d find appropriate words to tell all this to someone but for now, he felt he was in the presence of the King of Everything: where there was no external famine

That was enough for him right now, that was more than enough for him for right now. And no it wasnt. The more he thought about it, the more he reached out his palms.

Ĺà

‘You got wings of fire’

she said that to me, just like that and I felt the arms of those words descend on my senses. We are limited by human description, we are victims of fatigue and yet, now and again, God sends His angels to remind us of the Christ within, waiting to be unfurled again, and again, and again.

May you know the power of what lies within you: for we were not born to be paper and twig houses. We are the original temple of the living God, if we would…

Shut the ‘yabber- yabber of the Locust’!

When I was a child I was skinny, and I was a child. Shy. I stammered. Had to wear glasses very young. It kept falling off my snub nose. Got teased for that and my skinny legs. All that and I couldnot speak as well as the grown ups around me. I was ‘Pin throat’, ‘drumstick’, ….

Art Vihan

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You’re the worst in your family!” One of my school teachers told me. “Terrible at sports.” Yes, unfortunately. I was underweight, how could I lift and throw, or jump heights, my ankles felt too tiny for my height. I was best in my bare feet running in the sands at the beach along our little home by the sea. I was happiest in the guava tree; I talked to squirrels and myna. They talked back to me, I’m telling you. Their grey soft fluff and under wings, their little eyes and snacker of beak in tree branch it all spoke to me in a peace that other languages did nothing to comfort a tiny person growing up in a world too fast to understand its slower creatures.

When I was four, a dream began. A nightmare. It happened around the time our landowners son tried to molest me, an afternoon my Ma was out working. I waited, and as I did, the landowners son grabbed me by the arm. It was odd, we knew him. A tall darkish boy who didnt talk. Now he pulled me to a stool in the corner of their shadowy shop. The shutters were half downed. Then he pulled me to the floor, it was cold hard stone, too fast to scream. I called to my God. Ma had taught me to pray, would God be here in this cold terrible place? He was. The shutter shuttered back up, someone entered I cannot remember who; the sound of that was freedom.

Daylight filtered through.

The landowners son flung me from him and disappeared. I do not remember how I got to stand on a heap of red ants. The househelp found me there, she yelled me to safety back up the stairs to our home above the landowners’ place. Was it that night the night mares began? It was a thin, very brown skinned woman in white flowing clothes, she had no face. She chased me around the terrace outside our home. Peering down at me, I saw it over and over . That face with no features. Like a painting smudged brown. It was the first time something hurt me, it took my peace. It chased, stalked, ate at me. It was the first time I felt alone. Afraid. Slowly the dream faded and left a shadow in me. A shadow that grew grew grew till it blocked out the light. Strange how you can believe the grey shadow coming in through a bad dream, is the light. Strange how we can believe lies that we are imperfect because we are not physically strong, strange how we can believe we are disabled because someone did a bad thing to us. Strange how we disbelieve the gifts we are given by God, just because someone somewhere made us numb.

Now later I met Christ at the Cross and He told me about murderers who didn’t know what they were doing, but what does a child know about bullies? I never told my Ma about the landowners son; never told her about an uncle who later tried that same vicious thing again. Ok they didn’t succeed, but why the silence?

I do not know.

But this I do know. It is the shut up – ness of a terrible event, that fosters nightmares. It fosters a lack of trust in oneself. It rears self hate. How I do not know.

I was once a child and spoke as a child. Now I am grown I do not speak as a child in the dark shuttered place by a red anthill, numbed by life. I speak as a grown woman, as a mother with girls of her own. I never spoke about that shuttered time, now as I do,

The nightmare recedes. The thin brown woman in white linen, her featureless brown face? She recedes. What was she?

I do not know. But yesterday I heard a girl talk about a Promise from the sacred lips of Yahweh. ” ...the years the locusts’ve eaten I will restore to you…”

A locust is an evil grasshopper I replied to the girl. Yes it takes our harvest. Everything that was ours rightfully. A metaphor of a thief , the locust & it came in a swarm! A whole thousand upon thousand of them, an army. years of badness. Of bad bad sad words said over and over. “You there, shush! Sit! You are reject. You are odd. No dont come here. Go to your corner. Shush. Dont talk. Dont sing. Go in the back row. You lil ugly thing.”

The locusts tried eat me up,

Bad dreams stole my nights now and then. Shadows grew their harvest tall. They spread their soft wings around my news. The news that crept in 24x 7. Bad news . Bad news. We believe it all.

Then I heard the good news of a Christ who taught me to forgive the landowners boy who didn’t know what he was doing. The good news that showed me how to love and not mind the bad all the time. I was a collector of sad events world wide, the good news of Christ was that, He knew. He knew about all my shadow. Nothing was hidden from Him. He was there too.

I had that good news now in me…. a Light that burned the dark away. Bit by bit or burned the dark away. Flame by flame it burned the dark away

Flame by flame it burned the chatter of my locusts stealing my joy. Christ was in every dark valley I’d ever tread. He, in every page every line every chapter every episode of my life. Times I messed, times I offended His name, times I ran from Him and His in the dark. Times the locusts killed me. Then I buried me. All my skinny self and snub nose and stammer. And times I felt not good enough. Times in the red ant hill, times numb with the loneliness only thieves of time give. Thieves of time, of smiles, of joy, of the fountain of life. Like locusts they arrive, not just ones and toes but thousands on thousands of lies with big jaws they chew chew cud chew on our weakness.

But Christ told me that….His power was made perfect in my weakness. My littleness. The littler, the weaker I was the more his power showed up in me. Like cracks in a wall, with light showing through. He didnt take advantage of my vulnerability. He laid Himself down for it.

Opposite of that locust, He, Christ.

The Good news. My defender. Healer. Physician. Rock. Strong Tower. Saviour. Master. Protector. My Light. Yours. Your defender. Your protector. Your shut-er up of the locusts eating up your mind. Eating up your time. Your life.

Their chatter chatter chatter it goes on and on in Mindfields we’ve buried with the ashes of time. You burnt out just trying to rise. Burnt out just trying to wake up refreshed from nights you did not sleep trying to sleep. But hey no.more..you hear me. No more.

Locusts… no more. In the name of Jesus, go get out of my life. I …am with the Christ.

10,000 Reasons • When Gratitude Kickstarts Joy

https://chronic-joy.org/10000-reasons-when-gratitude-kickstarts-joy/

by Chronic Joy® | IllnessParenting | 2 comments10,000 Reasons When Gratitude Kickstarts Joy

y 👈Audio

GOD LACKS NO CREATIVITY EVEN IN THE LABOR ROOMS OF CHANGE

Two years ago our gentle teenager began to steadily turn into a stranger we could hardly recognize. A new medication put an end to his seizures a year later, but the trial had just begun.  

We broke into raggedy worship … surrounded by the prayers of dear family and friends. ~ R.Noel

God lacks no creativity even in the Labor rooms of Change!

Two years ago our gentle teenager began to steadily turn into a stranger we could hardly recognize. A new medication put an end to his seizures a year later, but the trial had just begun.  

Light fell through the Emergency Room’s glassed-in ceiling and onto Johann’s face as he sang, “Whatever lies before me, I will be singing when the evening comes. Bless the Lord oh, my soul …10,000 reasons and forever more …”  10,000 Reason. Matt Redman

BLINDNESS ISN’T EASY ON ANY COUNT

Johann sings while waiting. Ah, yes. Blindness isn’t easy on any count, but today I froze as he sang the words – “When the evening comes???”

As he waited on a stretcher near the CT scan unit of Nimhan’s Hospital’s Neuro Science Department, an orderly changed the sheets to Johann’s favorite color – lavender. How could she have known? Was this a sign that total healing would follow? Johann, now 19 and blind from birth, can detect a few colors and has light perception.

Ma, I love the lavender …” he said.

I bit back tears, nodding a muffled reply.

IT WILL PASS

When Johann’s seizures finally stopped, his aggression began. He was 18.  “It will pass,” friends said.

The girls and Johann had a beautiful childhood, sharing music and fun, sharing games with a brother they were proud to be seen with. Now there were blows, bites, scratches, rage, and verbal battery. We went to parks on sunrise picnics, did road trips, prayed, wept, clung together as a couple, and individually with each of our girls. But when we went out in twos, Johann would scream in panic, running past the gate in search of us.

A kind new doctor changed Johann’s medications gradually while withdrawing earlier prescriptions. Dearest Lord God, now we must have withdrawal combat too?

EVEN IF YOU SLAY ME

“Brace yourselves,” the doctor said, his face filled with a compassion that scared me. The months that followed were a Gethsemane place for us. Here we would taste the bittersweet of Job and Daniel, “Even if You slay me…” Job 13:15Daniel 3:14-18

 Johann adopted us at age one. We were all being brought up together by God in His Kindergarten of Faith, but now, was He letting us out on our own?

The first hint of Johann’s illness started around his school final exams. Johann refused to touch his Braille. His dimpled grin receded faster as December stretched into January. We guided him to hand write, “I know my Redeemer lives…” then pinned it up where we could all see it. We were clinging to sanity.

How long?” I frantically texted our second daughter, Kitsy, who was across the room. To avoid trigger words, we texted each other.

God won’t put something in our laps that we cannot handle. Unsure how long Ma, but I’m willing to wait,” she replied. Was it just yesterday that Kitsy had screamed, “I – I want my brother back!” Now she was beaming and serene?

RAGGEDY WORSHIP

This is what happens.

One of us sinks, but another perks up with unthinkable faith or Scripture leaps out from a calendar. The movie, Hacksaw Ridge, spoke volumes to us. It is easy to fall into self-destruction, but God lacks no creativity even in the labor rooms of change.

Johann sings with the voice of an angel. His seizures took that from him, but from the pit of that hell, he began to sing again,10,000 Reasons, a song that brought me to tears. Johann was singing! Yes, with a crackly sandpaper voice, but he was singing!

We broke into raggedy worship, in the midst of cushions-flying-at-our-heads-and-worse, but surrounded by the prayers of dear family and friends. Often, I would stare at the predawn sky. God was and is present, like in those days, those three silent days after Gethsemane: “… a Rose trampled on the ground, He … thought of me most of all.” (Above All, Michael W. Smith)

OUR PRAYERS GREW DESPERATE

Lord please help me through the noise of my questions. Give the girls some joy today. Help my husband, Jeff.

About this time we also experienced professional setbacks. Could it really get any worse? It could. You cannot re-route through Gethsemane if you want to finish with colors.

Some of my own prayers irritated me. “Thank you Lord for the trials You send us.” Gratitude was the best thing we could do – thanking God for a little bird in the window, for a relative who sent a gift, for a glorious sunset, or even for Johann’s question, “What is happening to me?”

GRATITUDE KICKSTARTED JOY

Yes, it did and some things I have no words for.

I began to blog and paint again. A friend called asking why I had dropped off social media, and asked if I would consider an art book contract with a Christian publisher. The theme? Hope for the Hurting. My head said, “No,” but God nudged me to say, “Yes.” So I did.

Jeff started painting too, and though he is not one to be poetic, he titled it, Autumn Blush. It was soul harvest time. Our daughter, Kitsy cooked offerings of love. This once hyper, young teenager was turning out exotic recipes in the midst of COVID-19 lockdown rationing. Our eldest daughter, Vihan, had begun a fellowship for those her age and older, and we now joined her online — not easy to do with Johann intolerant of a particular chord on the guitar or insisting on rocking right in front of camera, yet his presence reaches more people than we think possible.

As I write, light falls through the curtains and Johann asks what I’m doing. I tell him I am writing about his song, 10,000 Reasons, and he smiles his lop-sided smile.

SING LIKE NEVER BEFORE

Outside a Koyal bird calls. There will be rain tonight after a sweltering Indian day. Ah, Lord God, more reasons to bless Your name even if our son isn’t well yet.

“Sing like never before, Oh my soul.”

Worship Him for His Spirit of matchless comfort in the presence of our frail humanity.

Unconditional healing is God lifting our innermost being, no matter the ordeal. Oh, the awe of holding hands with God, of being loved by Him in the midst of pain, learning to love Him back and to love each other unconditionally, like He does.

We are learning.

y 👈Audio. Read by RaylaAudio Player00:00


We were in tears recording this. It was a healing all by itself. … Very special hugs from our son who knows you are praying… ~ Rayla Noel

Rayla Noel lives in India with her husband, their three children and a God who never runs out of Creative Ways to help them graduate from His School of Faith.My Grace is sufficient for you; for My Power shows best in weakness2 Corinthians 12:9 AMP

7 Hour GLOBAL WORSHIP EVENT (20 COUNTRIES) | Fast/ PRAY FOR YOUR COUNTRY! || HAVEN FELLOWSHIP” on YouTube

Has there ever been a time like this one? Has there ever been a silence like now: each of us one voice asking the same questions/ the same quest for peace/ the same need? We are as a race quietened; we have never before been startled as we are today. I’ve not experienced a certain shameless scream inside, for each other. Never before has my heart been this unafraid to say it out loud: we need you Lord Jesus. No one else met me in my darkest hour; no one else showed me the Light. Yea I can say it without a flicker of a doubt: you and I have been loved by the Christ.

Here it is! Woooo! 😄😄😄🥳
We received 112 expressions of worship, from 20 countries, 53 states, 5 continents, in 28 different languages!
Let’s get on our knees, praise God, and pray for our land! 😄

https://youtu.be/GpnxLbxlx1U

Between good and evil ….

Between all our rights and crime, we carve an existence. Someone made rules but deep within even a baby knows what is theft, what is hurt, what is cheating. You cant just say you and I can do what we wish, somewhere it hurts someone else. Our choices are dominoes. And like it or not we are responsible for each other. Like it or not, theres a sky and theres gravity. Theres hearts and theres love. Theres peace and theres war. Theres way too much going on in an earth keeling with need for understanding. We are bridges. We are bricks. We are more than just humans. We are givers and takers; we are borrowers and lenders. We hate, we are indifferent, we love. Emotion is unseen, and it’s there. There is right and wrong. Much as we yell about it, deep within we know, we knew it from when we were kindergarten and we took someone’s pencil and hid it; and we know it now too. We know when we hurt a sensibility, we know when we judge amiss, and we know theres evil and good. And if there is, then theres more to what we refuse to … and the chasm between those two is the answer to every question we ever!

FMF WRITERS