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I Wonder …

12 Apr

I’ve always been a curious person — curious meaning “a desire to learn or know,” not curious meaning “strange” (although some might argue with that). My mind is always “wondering” about something.

Here are some things I wonder about:BabyOil_Really

  • If corn oil comes from corn … where does baby oil come from?
  • How do they get deer to cross at those yellow Deer crossing signs?
  • Why do kamikaze pilots bother to wear helmets?
  • Is it true that cannibals don’t eat clowns because they taste funny?
  • If you were going to shoot a mime, would you use a silencer?
  • And this one really gets me …..What do they use to ship Styrofoam? *

In recent months, I’ve wondered over things far more serious.

  • I wonder how God could love me.
  • I wonder that  Jesus chose to “empty” Himself and become a servant (Philippians 2:7-8).
  • I wonder that the Savior, ruler of all creation, chose to live within His creation to save us.
  • I wonder what the angels thought when they saw the Lord of Hosts on a cross (1 Peter 1:12).
  • I wonder that the Church is still alive and well—especially in third-world countries (Matthew 16:18).
  • I wonder that the Holy Spirit doesn’t get so sick of indwelling me (John 15:26), He doesn’t “pack up” and leave.
  • I wonder that all Creation points back to a Creator (Psalm 19:1Colossians 1:16) … and I wonder how man could miss that.
  • I wonder what our praises will sound like before the throne (Revelation 15:3-4).

God created us with the capacity to wonder over Him and His wonderful acts … wonder that leads to worship.

I love King David’s prayer-song, written for Asaph and his brothers to offer regularly before the Ark of the Covenant. And as my heart swells with wonder — love, reverence, awe, healthy fear, and worship before Him – I offer these words to you.

Linger over these words … allow your heart to swell with wonder too:

“…give praise to the Lord, proclaim his name; make known among the nations what he has done … tell of all his WONDERful acts. Glory in his holy name … Look to the Lord and his strength; seek his face always. Remember the WONDERS he has done, his miracles … great is the Lord and most worthy of praise… all the gods of the nations are idols, but the Lord made the heavens. Splendor and majesty are before him; strength and joy are in his dwelling place … Worship the Lord in the splendor of his holiness … Praise be to the Lord …. “ [excerpts from 1 Chronicles 16:8-36, emphasis mine]

As David finished his prayer-song, “all the people said, ‘Amen’ and ‘Praise the Lord.'”

Indeed. Amen! Praise the Lord!

What causes you to wonder and praise over our awesome, WONDERful God today?

– Dawn

* Humor,  some attributed to comedian Steven Wright

Graphics, original sources not clear

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How to Cultivate a Breath of Praise

31 Aug

I saw a cartoon this week that says, “If you woke up breathing, congratulations! You have another chance!FishHoldingBreath_framed

But I remember another not-so-nice cartoon – actually, a photo of an angry looking cat – with this caption: “The problem with some people is that they’re breathing!”

I recently woke up struggling to breathe. I have asthma, and most days I’m just fine. But that morning, I felt I wasn’t getting enough oxygen.

I’m addicted to breathing (LOL); so I began the slow breathing technique I learned to calm myself (because I tend to panic when I can’t breathe – wouldn’t you?); it’s a technique that facilitates better breathing overall.

I told myself, “Breathe in slowly through your nose. Hold the breath five seconds. Breathe out slowly through your pursed, focused lips. And again …. and again ….” (Actually, I learned this during Lamaze classes, I think!)

But that morning, something else came to my mind. And it wasn’t just about physical breathing.

“Let everything that has breath praise the Lord! Praise the Lord!” – Psalm 150:6 ESV

Hey, that includes me, I thought. Even when I’m struggling to breathe, I still have breath.

God gave me that first breath when I was born (Genesis 2:7; Job 33:4) and I will keep breathing until the day I die (Job 27:3).

The steady rhythm of breathing in and out – even if sometimes labored – reminds me that the One who gave me breath can just as easily take it away.

He is my Creator. He is my Sovereign God. He administers and manages His creation.

And I choose to be grateful and praise Him.

Let’s make this practical today. Breathe with me. Praise with me.

  • Breathe in deeply as you pray, “Thank you, Father God, for giving me life and sustaining me for all these years.”
  • Hold that breath for five seconds and pray, “I will love you and praise you for as long as you give me breath.”
  • Release that breath and pray, “And continue those praises when I walk in your house someday in heaven.”

Give glory to God … let everything that has breath praise Him!

Action Step:  Do you know people who struggle with breathing? (I know several.) Pray especially for them today.

– Dawn

God’s Creation ~ Drink It In!

15 Jun

Glass_HalfEmpty?A well-known proverb states that an optimistic would say a glass is half full, while a pessimist would say it is half empty. What would people of different professions and walks of life say?

The Banker would say that the glass has just under 50% of its net worth in liquid assets.

The Government would say that the glass is fuller than if the opposition party were in power.

The Opposition would say that it is irrelevant because the present administration has changed the way such volume statistics are collected.

The Economist would say that, in real terms, the glass is 25% fuller than at the same time last year.

The Philosopher would say that, if the glass was in the forest and no one was there to see it, would it be half anything?

The Psychiatrist would ask, “What did your mother say about the glass?”

The Physicist would say that the volume of this cylinder is divided into two equal parts; one a colorless, odorless liquid, the other a colorless, odorless gas. Thus the cylinder is neither full nor empty. Rather, each half of the cylinder is full, one with a gas, one with a liquid. *

Whether a glass is half empty or half full, there’s nothing like crystal clear water to satisfy our thirst; and I (Dawn) am so thankful that God blessed our planet with rivers, lakes, oceans … beautiful bodies of water that serve so many purposes in our lives.

As Pam posted photos to Facebook recently of her time in beautiful, exhilarating Alaska ~ especially the gorgeous Pam Reading in Alaskascenes where she had her quiet time with God (I love this one of her reading LOL with God), I couldn’t help but think of the three years I lived in Iceland during high school ~ a place that is, in at least one way, much like Alaska. It gets cold!

Iceland’s official first day of summer is at the end of April, even though Icelanders won’t see higher temperatures until June or even July.  My favorite time of year there was summer, when the sun was visible for almost 24 hours of each day. I remember playing softball outside at 3:00 am! If I were there now, I’d be covering my bedroom windows with aluminum foil so I could sleep in the “Land of the Midnight Sun.”

OxarafossIt is a “land of frost and fire” with volcanoes, hot springs, and active geysers alongside glaciers, making this country one of the most unusual in the Atlantic. One of the most beautiful natural features of Iceland is its waterfalls. They are among Europe’s most powerful, magnificent falls.

My favorite waterfall ~ though not the most beautiful or the tallest ~ was the chilly Öxarárfoss near the Almannagjá rift valley, where the Vikings met for their parliament meetings at Þingvellir (pronounced Thing-vet-lur).  We placed six-packs of Continue reading

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