Joseph and Mary watched baby Jesus sleep. He stretched, smiled, then let out a little complaint as Mary removed a piece of hay scratching His neck. His little face relaxed into deep, silent night sleep.
His eyes moved back and forth in rapid eye movement sleep. Sometimes He smiled when He dreamed. Sometimes deep agonizing pain came across His face.
Mary asked, “What do you think He’s dreaming?”
Without looking away Joseph whispered, “I really don’t know.”
There’s no guide-book on how to parent the Savior of the world. The immensity of raising a son, who’s also the Son of the Living God, is beyond comprehension. They really didn’t know what to do except the things that were in front of them minute by minute.
The sleeping newborn was completely, physically dependent on His parents, but there was so much more. How could Mary and Joseph understand that as they smiled upon their sleeping child, He smiled upon them? How could they fathom their dreaming baby was hearing people praying to Him at that very moment? How could they know He was dreaming in human form, but in God form knew everything? Continue reading Baby Jesus Dreams
Shake the desert sand out of your shoes. Get the pebble out of the toe. There’s a mountain to conquer.
It’s not too big or tall, not too steep or too rocky to be settled. It can be done. No matter what the circumstances, it can be conquered. There is a way. The size of the mountain is not as much of a limit as how we think about it.
There’s always fresh challenges, additional issues, new problems. There’s always something different that starts to make the mountains look the same.
I want the green, lush valley of rest, where gentle breezes and bubbling brooks wind their way through the trees and flowers. I want the easy path instead of a hard climb, the gentle road, not of the stony trail, but that’s not how it usually goes.
Climb anyway. Continue reading Climb The Mountain
True story — It was Thanksgiving Day and he got up ready for a day of family, feasting and football, but something was bugging him. He couldn’t get a co-worker who had been in the hospital and hadn’t worked for a month off his mind.
A crazy idea kept bouncing like a rubber ball in his head. He kept feeling like he was supposed to buy bags of groceries, including a turkey and all the trimmings, for the man and his family.
He dismissed it several times, but couldn’t shake the thought. A little later, the man’s wife needed something at the last-minute from the grocery store, so he loaded up two of his young sons to go with him.
At the store the thought was stronger than ever, so he grabbed a buggy and started filling it with canned goods, fresh fruits and vegetables, a turkey, milk, flour, eggs, the whole works. When his sons asked why he was getting so much, he told them they were about to give the food to someone. Continue reading No Logical Answer
I put the rose from his garden in his rigamortis hand. It didn’t look natural. A snap of the stem to shorten it, then working it under his cold fingers and folded hands made it presentable.
Yes, that’s better.
I slipped a note I had hurriedly written, almost as an afterthought, and slipped it inside his suit jacket, hidden from the world, never to be read by anyone, not even the one it was written to. Continue reading What Words Cannot Say
Sometimes it’s best to hold firm and decline a gift of disproportionate value and, in fact, it’s down right selfish to accept it. At first, I thought this was one of those times, so I thanked the man I knew from work and politely declined.
“I can’t accept this. This needs to go to your kids and passed on in your family!”
He squared his shoulders and looked me straight in the eye, “Yes, you normally do, but in this case, I want YOU to have it.”
He was holding a small maroon pin which he was awarded for serving in the Army. He explained the pin’s significance which represented where he fought and served. The pin’s actual value is minimal, but the sentimental, sacrifice and emotional value is priceless!
Again, I told him I just couldn’t accept it.
“You don’t understand”, he said, “You have to take it!” Continue reading Thank You Isn’t Enough
Three balls for $2 or nine for $5 — man after man, boy after boy, redneck after redneck, stepped up from a large semi-circle of spectators around the dunking booth at the Brazoria County Fair, Texas.
Sitting in the dunking booth surrounded by carnival rides and loud music, the little clown face painted man was easily heard above it all. “Ayayayayayaya!“, Bobo hollered into a microphone. He had no shortage of insults for anyone who dared pick up a ball trying to drop him in the water.
They’re only prize was to see Bobo drop in the water, but he and his worker were making money hand over fist. His abrasive voice rang out over loud speakers and like flies to a spider web, one by one he lured guys in to plop down their money. As soon they stepped in his web, Bobo started. His constant chattering, challenges and chastising made you laugh hysterically at times, wince at others.
The nature of young men is to battle, in one shape or fashion, to show their dominance, and Bobo capitalized on this — all the way to the bank. Everyone knew what was in store as some overconfident ego filled guy stepped up like a gladiator to throw a ball. In most cases, the gladiator walked away humiliated. For spectators like me, it was hilarious. Continue reading Bobo
At the foot of the cross,
Where dirt gives way and rugged wood is revealed,
Where sweat, blood and tears drop from above,
Where laughter, jeers and taunts are heard,
Where only a faithful few remain, overcome in pain as they look on…
At the foot of the cross,
Where the blood mud puddles,
Where evil raises its hands in victory unaware it just lost the war,
Where one death births life for all… Continue reading At The Foot Of The Cross
Through the air, gliding the winds in silent solace seeking a place that may, or may not yet, be there. Peace and hope comfort my spirit as I wing along seeking a land that only the meek shall enter.
All I see is water, waves upon waves, moving and massaging, yet erasing. Somewhere is a promise, and to find it is my goal. For this, my boarded, protected wings were set free to fly in search of the promise which will release the confined, and set free humbled souls.
It feels good to fly freely. Yet on the other hand, a journey’s labor is rarely worth it during flight. The fun, the pleasure comes in the landing, where the destination is safely enjoyed.
So on I fly through daylight, then the dark night, searching, seeking, straining to see by moonlight that virtuous destination where I may land, yet all that’s there is water. Continue reading The Dove’s Flight
The bride was beautiful. It wasn’t just her dress, makeup or natural beauty. It was the radiance of her heart from the inside to out. To top it off, she wears beauty, both the inside and out, with a genuine, sincere grace and humility. Her face glows. Her heart shines.
It was the day she’d always dreamed about, and it was glorious. The groom is a top of the line guy, and soon after they met, their spirits danced. They fell in love and quickly grew into soulmates.
Any time you’ve lost a close family member though, there’s always a certain yearning that rustles the memory of those who won’t be there. The bride’s father was a good man, and marked her life profoundly well. He passed away unexpectedly after her 5th grade year, and making it even harder, she and the rest of her family were with him on vacation.
It’s hard for children who can’t touch, hear or talk to their hero. Some children respond negatively and grow up cold, hard and calloused. On the other hand, some choose otherwise. Continue reading The Bride’s Dance
It was a short run into the grocery store before work for a few apples and coffee creamer, but the only checkout line was long, too long.
The lady at the front of the line was an elderly lady and the bagger said something I couldn’t understand, then walked out with her to put her groceries in her car. The next person checked out and was on the way out when the bagger returned.
The man bagging was probably 65 years old and had a round face with sharp features and a big pleasant smile. The lady in front of me checked out ten or twelve items and the man’s face seemed locked into a smile. He’d grab a couple of items, glance at the checker and customer, as if searching for something in their faces, and then bag the next items.
After the lady paid, the man handed her grocery bags to her and said something, but again, I didn’t understand him. She smiled, spoke back to him and he laughed out loud beaming a huge smile.
I wasn’t paying attention when the checker checked me out. I swiped my card, spoke to the checker and turned to grab the plastic sack from the bagger. I caught a glimpse of his hearing aids just as he said in garbled words like someone severely deaf….at least I think he said, “I love eat apples! And coffee!” Continue reading Smiling Eyes