Here's something you don't see everyday. Although I've seen it a few times before on my street... A homeless man pulling a bicycle which is attached to the most astounding construct! Made of bicycle wheels and plastic webbing, chicken wire and aluminum piping, this huge mobile container for tin cans, and whatever this homeless individual can scrounge to resell, is almost the size of a garbage truck! And carries probably hundreds of pounds of aluminum cans.

In constant danger from cars and trucks, this is an outstanding testament to human ingenuity and dogged determination. The man marches on, stopping occasionally to take a container to dumpsters looking for cans. Whatever he can find.

I asked him if he needed something to eat or drink. He just smiled and shook his head. "I need to move on." And I realized he probably takes advantage of the nighttime to do his searching, as it is too hot during the day to do so. I smile and wave and wish him blessings.

If I ever feel like I am put upon in this life, I should feel ashamed. This man has shamed me utterly. I've invited him up to my porch in the past. Giving him food and drink. He is a believer. And I've never met a more cheerful brother in the Lord Jesus Christ! But he doesn't take any credit for his outstanding ingenuity and Drive. He gives the glory to God. I have tears in my eyes as I write this. He was also an addict and finds it very difficult to find a place to live due to his past. So he sleeps on the streets and does what he needs to do to survive. And survive he does!

I say a prayer for this stalwart. His name is Ben. Will you join me in my prayers (good thoughts)? I think he deserves them, don't you?

♡ Catherine

I haven't been on site because my father had a new procedure done. He is also in need of prayer, good thoughts. I come on occasionally to check my messages and do a little reading. But I honestly don't have a lot of time. Thanks for understanding.

GOD BLESS YOU ALL!

There is no Love.
That is divine.
Without a thorn.
We cannot love.
With the love
of the King of Love.
Without the thorn.
Of death.
Death to Self.
Through forgiveness.
Through pain.
Through loss.
Through letting go.
Of one's own gain.
For the sake of the other.
For the sake of their welfare.
Even to the wounding.
Of one's own soul.

There is no Love.
That is divine.
Without a thorn.
Without setting the other free.
To be who the Man of Thorns
created them to be.

There is no Love.
That is divine.
Without a thorn.

The heart breaks in two.
The hands release.
Unclenched fists.
The beloved one.
Into the hands of God.
Knowing this...
They may never come back.
For they were never ours.
To begin with.

There is no Love.
That is divine.
Without a thorn.

The One who wore
the Crown of Thorns.
Teaches this.
To His own.

There is no Love.
Without.
A Thorn.

Fierce.
Jealous.
Is His Love.
Like a jagged rock.
That will break me.
And grieve His own heart.
In order to bring me to His.
In order to bring me into His chamber.
Of Love.
For I am His beloved bride.
And He is my Bridegroom.
He not will endure other lovers.
Luring me away from Him.
He will tear them from my heart.
Even wound me.
That He might have me for His own.
Fierce.
Jealous.
Is His Love.


Gentle.
Tender.
Is His Love.
So that I grow to despise
every other lover.
Compared to Him.
I stay in the shadow
of His wings.
And behold His face.
Until I am undone.
By His
fierce.
By His
gentle.
Love.

Mother mallard.
Keeps watch.
Over her almost grown young.
At rest.
But then,
after a time,
she waddles away from them.
And goes for a swim.
In the peaceful pond.
She has no worry.
No fear for her young.
She somehow knows.
That their Creator.
Is watching over them.
She somehow knows.
That they are in His hands.


"Yes, Lord, I'm listening."

God sometimes leads me
along the road
of emptiness
Streams in life have
dried up
Barrenness in open lands
has led to hollowness
Leaving me in a shallow valley
Where emptiness was all I held
within my hands

Fragments of my life pass through
my mind
Pieces of a puzzle
Shuffle together
Falling into a vast
wasteland
Drifting into the emptiness
that surrounds me

All the things
I once held dear
Have turned colors
Becoming brown
like the dust from the ground

Crumbling

Setting back down upon the earth's land
Where pieces of my charred heart
can be found in the
lower ground

Split in two
Seeping into the
barrenness.

By Weeping willow
Written-2014
Posted-2017

Words from a few years ago

When all of worldly beauty's lost
When form and face have borne the cost
Of life's sojourn upon this earth
A greater glory then springs forth

When vanity is cast aside
With long-dashed dreams and fallen pride
At last a better hope I see
One anchored in eternity

When no one gives a second glance
Or offers promise of romance
I know the One whose love is true
Who looks beyond what most men do

When wit and charm have fled from thought
And company's no longer sought
There's still One friend who longs to hear
My every word, desire and fear

When awkwardness is more the rule
Than competence and being cool
His words I hear so gently spoken,
"Come, poor in spirit and all who are broken."

When those around me criticize
With disapproval in their eyes
He spreads His arms with full embrace
And wears acceptance on His face

When kindred spirit can't be found
And understanding's wayward bound
The One who knows me best will be
Thinking precious thoughts toward me

When foot is slipping, mind astray
From trying to fix things my own way
He rescues me with hourly grace
And sets me in a spacious place

When all my naught attempts at fame
Lie crushed beneath a weight of shame
I seek the fame of Him instead
Who calls my name and lifts my head

When youth and vigor fade away
And triumph seems an ancient day
My strength can rest in One who brings
Fresh power to soar on eagle's wings

When my last breath some day I take
Death's shadowed crossing, hence, to make
Upon Christ's nail-scarred feet I'll fall
To kiss that One who is my ALL

"Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. 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."
~ 2 Corinthians 4:16-18

***

Repost
Joy

What is true joy?

It's delight which flows without measure
from the assurance that through every circumstance
and detail of my life God is ever beckoning and drawing me
into deeper intimacy with Himself, ever whispering to my heart,
“Come closer still.”

Joy in the midst of devastating loss, crushing disappointment,
unbearable pain or scourging heartache is about the discovery of
treasure so precious and rare that it never could have been found
had we not been forced to walk a path of affliction in the desert.

It's in the isolation and brutality of the wild that we come to know Him
in ways that transcend the span of human imagining or desiring,
and all the songs and all the poems and all the masterpieces
taken together cannot capture an estimable description
of the pleasures that might be unearthed there.

There lies before us in our afflictions a vast and wondrous beauty
yet undisclosed behind the fog, and like a theatrical curtain
slowly pulled back to reveal a perfectly set stage
He will sublimely unveil it in His own directed time.

And we shall be elated at the view,
for it's against a backdrop of struggle and darkness
that the best and most moving of stories have always unfolded.

Maybe nothing truly beautiful can ever take form on earth
without the shroud of mystery and brokenness surrounding it—
at least not the kind of beauty that takes our breath away
and leaves us yearning to possess it.

***

"You have made known to me the path of life; You will fill me with joy
in Your presence, with eternal pleasures at Your right hand."  
~ Psalm 16:11

"O God, You are my God, earnestly I seek You; my soul thirsts for You, my body longs for You, in a dry and weary land where there is no water. I have seen You in the sanctuary and beheld Your power and Your glory. Because Your love is better than life, my lips will glorify You. I will praise You as long as I live, and in Your name I will lift up my hands. My soul will be satisfied as with the richest of foods; with singing lips my mouth will praise You. On my bed I remember You; I think of You through the watches of the night. Because You are my help, I sing in the shadow of Your wings. My soul clings to You; Your right hand upholds me."  
~ Psalm 63:1-8

"It was good for me to be afflicted so that I might learn Your decrees. The law from Your mouth is more precious to me than thousands of pieces of silver and gold."  
~ Psalm 119:71-72

" 'Therefore I am now going to allure her; I will lead her into the desert and speak tenderly to her. There I will give her back her vineyards, and will make the Valley of Achor a door of hope. There she will sing as in the days of her youth...' "
~ Hosea 2:14-15
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