Saturday, August 25, 2012

Friday, August 24, 2012

i can't save the (cat) world

My neighborhood is overrun with feral cats.  After seeing the number grow, several people began humanely trapping.  Over the last couple of weeks, around 18 were caught.  That’s the problem.  These cats are hungry, get hit by cars, get sick with contagious infections, other illnesses, get injured, infected with worms, and so much more.
I have to remind myself that I can’t save the world.

It was a very, very hard decision for me, but I also began trapping.  My first one had some intestinal sickness and looked pitiful.  Today I caught a ten-week-old grey tabby that was very sick.  The animal control officer is very understanding that some of us can’t hold back a few tears.  It’s something about handing them over, knowing they are headed to the shelter and will be put to sleep.
I have to remind myself that I can’t save the world.

Earlier this week, a couple of neighbors caught a baby kitten from between our fences.  I was able to catch two others.  (Even though one scratched and bit me, he was still cute.)  There were five kittens, but I never found the other two.  My neighbors are allergic, so I had a box of three precious kittens about five weeks old.  The SPCA was at capacity, nothing at The Humane Society or The Feral Cat Assistance program.  I really tried, but the last option was the Animal Shelter.  I took the box and asked what would happen to them.  I was told they may never be put up for adoption.  They have 600 dogs and cats, and they do the best they can.
I have to remind myself that I can’t save the world.

A neighbor just called.  The house beside me has baby kittens in the crawl space.  And so we begin again Monday.
I have to remind myself that I can’t save the world.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

the tree outside a bedroom window

In August of 2000, we loaded up the truck and Jeep and drove towards God’s country.  We were heading for Boone, NC, a peaceful setting in the Blue Ridge Mountains.  I rode in the Jeep for the drive up.  We talked about campus life and settling into the dorm and if he had everything he needed and how we loved the mountains and how it wasn’t that far from home and to what lay ahead...

Then there was less talk and more music.  My heart became flooded with memories.  Some made me happy and I smiled, some made me sad and I fought back the tears.  I this story began some 18 years before, how quickly time had passed, how this journey was unknown...

The campus was unbelievably spectacular.  I took a step back and tried to take it all in.  We unloaded all of his belongings and somehow moved them into his dorm.  My only child would be living here.  We were glad he was sharing the dorm with an old friend.  We helped put away a few things, but as for the rest, he would make that space his own, now this was his home for a while...

Our goodbyes had been said.  As the mountains disappeared behind us, I knew it was time to let go. I trusted that he would make good choices, that he would find his way.  The page had turned to a new chapter.  His journey would take a new path, one guided by God, one that he would make his own...
On our way home, we stopped at a local garden center and bought a Crepe Myrtle tree.  It’s one of our favorite trees, from the tender green leaves of spring, to the tiny delicate flowers of summer, to the brilliant multi-colored leaves of fall, to the beautiful bark of winter.  We planted the tree that day, and the cycle continues...

This tree is outside the bedroom window, the room of a young child’s journey, a journey which shaped the child into a young man... 

Sometimes his tree will catch my eye, and I stop and remember and gaze and smile.  Since that day, he graduated college, he married the woman God intended, they have three beautiful children, they are following the path God had chosen...

Monday, August 13, 2012

judge not

there’s a story behind every person,a reason why they are the way they are so, think about that before you judge someone

Before you judge my life, my past, or my character...walk in my shoes, walk the path I’ve traveled, live my sorrows, my doubts, my fear, my pain, and my laughter...remember, everyone has a story.  When you’ve lived my life, then you can judge me.

 Why do I still need reminding of this?

“Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.
“Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye?  How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye?  You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.
Matthews 7:1-5 NIV

Sunday, August 12, 2012

sunday songs

A man named C. Austin Miles (1868-1946) was first a pharmacist and then began authoring hymns and then became a music director at church.  He also was an amateur photographer.

One day in March of 1912, he was in his dark room developing film.  He had a profound spiritual experience where he saw a vision of Mary Magdalene looking into the empty tomb.  He saw her walking away into a garden, where she met Jesus.

Miles had a new song filling his mind and heart.  He sat down and wrote the lyrics to ‘In the Garden’, and that very night he composed the musical score.  The song was published in 1912.

This is one of my favorite hymns, especially when I’m in my garden...

In the Garden

I come to garden alone,
While the dew is still on the roses,
And the voice I hear falling on my ear,
The Son of God discloses . . .

And He walks with me, and He talks with me,
And He tells me I am His own,
And the joy we share as we tarry there,
None other, has ever, known!

He speaks and the sound of His voice,
Is so sweet the birds hush their singing,
And the melody that he gave to me,
Within my heart is ringing . . .

And the joy we share as we tarry there,
None other, has ever, known!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Monday, August 6, 2012


a rose can say I love you
an orchid can enthrall
but a weed bouquet in a chubby fist
that is the best of all

Sunday, August 5, 2012

sunday songs

In 1922, a woman named Rhea F. Miller wrote a poem. Somehow, ten years later a copy of that poem was on top of an organ in a family home in New York.  A 23-year-old musician saw the poem, and its words touched the cry of his heart.  He set the words to music.  His mother heard her son singing this testimony of commitment.  She came from the kitchen, with tears in her eyes, and asked him to sing it the next Sunday.

When the congregation heard his deep voice sing, little did they know that song would become one of the most well-known Christian hymns.  A few years later, this musician joined forces with a young evangelist and they traveled the world together.

The musician: George Beverly Shea
The evangelist: Billy Graham
The song: I'd Rather Have Jesus

I'd Rather Have Jesus

I'd rather have Jesus than silver or gold,
I'd rather have His than have riches untold;
I'd rather have Jesus than houses or lands,
I'd rather be led by His nail pierced hand

Than to be the king of a vast domain
And be held in sin's dread sway;
I'd rather have Jesus than anything
This world affords today.

I'd rather have Jesus than men's applause,
I'd rather be faithful to His dear cause;
I'd rather have Jesus than worldwide fame,
I'd rather be true to His holy name

He's fairer than lilies of rarest bloom,
He's sweeter than honey from out the comb;
He's all that my hungering spirit needs,
I'd rather have Jesus and let Him lead

More than that, I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but rubbish so that I may gain Christ,
Philippians 3:8 NAS

Saturday, August 4, 2012

quick quotes

quotes by Corrie Ten Boom

What wings are to a bird, and sails to a ship, so is prayer to the soul.

Trying to do the Lord's work in your own strength is the most confusing, exhausting, and tedious of all work. But when you are filled with the Holy Spirit, then the ministry of Jesus just flows out of you.

Is prayer your steering wheel or your spare tire?

When a train goes through a tunnel and it gets dark, you don't throw away the ticket and jump off. You sit still and trust the engineer.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

a little girl's calling

Let me tell you about my Great-Aunt Gladys.

While other children were playing ‘house’ or ‘truck driver’ or ‘teacher and school’ or ‘super-hero’, my Great-Aunt Gladys played ‘missionary’.  Yes, I said ‘missionary’.  Even as child, she knew that God was calling her to be a missionary.  To me, that’s incredibly awesome!

She attended Oxford College, The Medical College of Virginia, and Tulane University in preparation for becoming a medical missionary.  She became both a general medical doctor and a surgeon.

My Great-Aunt Gladys, MD, sailed for China in 1924.  She was prepared for language difficulties and oriental diseases.      

Such an example of the conditions the medical missionaries faced happened in 1935.  There was a deadly ‘scourge black fever’ that was killing thousands and wiping out whole villages in a coastal province in China.  The missionaries worked with limited resources and without enough facilities.

Her dedication to China ended after WW II when missionaries were forced to leave or become imprisoned.  The Communist Regime closed China to missionaries.  After serving about eleven years in the China mission, Aunt Gladys began her homeward journey.

She remained in the states for several years, studied a new language, and learned about diseases in the heart of Africa.  Aunt Gladys traveled to Africa in 1949 to continue her missionary career in the Kasai valley in the Congo.  She directed a women’s hospital, worked at other Congo missions, and served for many years at Bulape as well at other stations. She was among those evacuated during an Independence Revolution, but later she returned to the mission field. 

After many years of Christian service, Aunt Gladys had reached the retirement age.  Missionaries were given complete physicals when returning for furlough.  She had developed cancer and later died at Memorial Hospital in Charlotte, NC on December 28th 1964..
She dedicated her life as a medical missionary...
This is what God had planned for that little girl’s life...