Wednesday, November 29, 2006

better than life.

Psalm 63

David wrote this psalm while he was in the wilderness of Judah. Dictionary.com describes a desert as a place of barreness, desolation, and lack. In the wilderness...David knew what it felt like to thirst, to long, to crave....he had a lot of needs during that time. He had important physical needs like food, water, shelter...then there were also emotional needs like family and friends & the betrayal he faced and how the king's life was threatened because his own son wanted to kill him. He had more going on in his life during that time than most of us will probably ever have in our lifetime. He faced so much problems & trials - some of them very life threatening, some just very heart breaking - and he was in one of the worst places you can ever be at to experience trials & problems...THE WILDERNESS.

But things always take a new twist with King David. That despite all the hardships he had to endure, how awesome it was that he was able to write one of my most favorite verses in the bible (Ps.63:3) and declare God's goodness while he was in the wilderness. He knew the problems were real....he knew he was in the desert where life wasn't fruitful and it seemed like his prayers weren't being answered. But yet, despite all those facts, he chose to stick with the Truth, and declared that "God's love is better than life itself". The one thing I love about King David was that he always spoke God's truth without watering down his own feelings and emotions as a human being. He knew the balance...he knew his heart and he also knew God.

At that moment the man after God's own heart declared to the very desert that seemed to engulf him that God's lovingkindess was better than anything life had to offer...no matter what life had to offer. Whether he was King on the throne or King on the run....he spoke of God's faithfulness...because he knew who he served....he knew God. Matthew Henry says "he comforted himself with thoughts of God".

I know in my life right now...I can very well relate to this Wilderness Experience. So much is on my plate right now...it's beyond what most people can even begin to comprehend. My smile & the laughter drown out my breaking heart somehow. it seems like I have no answers coming my way - even if i've prayed, fasted, seeked, asked, waited.....somehow everything seems to be on hold. I look at my circumstances and I see barrenness and lack. Just like David - my needs are very real and I am in a desert place. And yet, knowing somehow that God love's me....gives me a sense of peace & stillness in my heart. Yes I cry and I face the pain...I do not water down my problems and pretend it's all fine. I know there's pain....I feel it. And yet, I also know that He loves me. And His love for me is better than anything life has to offer.

I pray that like King David, I will have enough grace & strength to hold on tenaciously, that my soul would cling to Him, to earnestly seek and long for Him - to behold His power and His glory - to learn every day to be fully dependent on Him - because He is faithful and He will satisty my soul with the richest of foods


Psalm 63
A psalm of David, regarding a time
when David was in the wilderness of Judah.

1 O God, you are my God;
I earnestly search for you.
My soul thirsts for you;
my whole body longs for you
in this parch
ed and weary land
where there is no water.

2 I have seen yo
u in your sanctuary
and gazed upon your power and glory.

3 Your unfailing love is better to me than life itself;
how I praise you!

4 I will honor you as long as I live,
lifting up my hands to you in prayer.

5 You satisfy me more than the richest of foods.
I will praise you with songs of joy.

6 I lie awake thinking of you,
meditating on you through the night.

7 I think how much you have helped me;
I sing for joy in the shado
w of your protecting wings.

8 I follow clo
se behind you;
your strong right hand holds me securely.

the desert in judah



Sunday, November 26, 2006

when.

when?

hope seemed to be so far away...
few people know...that beneath the laughter & the smile...
there's a heart falling apart...
I try to be strong to cover up the pain...
but as i drove home today....
i couldn't help but let down the tears...
people see, but they don't know...
the secrets of the heart...
the yearning, the longing for answers...
when...when will it be better?
how long must I wait...how long must I pray?
how long do I have to cry everynight...
and sleep on a pillow wet with tears?

Ruthless Trust, Reckless Abandon is what they say....
yet, I find myself asking, wondering, have I not trusted You enough?
have I not had enough faith to believe and hold on to the promises?
why do I feel like my dreams, the very desires You gave...
are all slowly washing down the drain?
why do I feel alone?
You promised me I would never be alone.
come...I need You to hold me.

coz pain is what I feel...and it hurts so bad...
the joy of You is my strength they say....
tell me what it is that gives you joy?
i need Your joy...i need Your strength
so i can have enough hope in me for the next day...

the silence is deafening.....
i hear nothing....
i press in with thanksgiving and praise...
and yet I hear nothing at all....
except for my heart breaking...
and me trying hard to breathe and drown out the tears...

So i sip on my Cab...listen to jazz music...
ella fitzgerald, billie holiday to help soothe me...
and I try find reasons to smile....
coz my eyes are tired of crying.
Please please answer me...
coz I'm tired...so tired of crying.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

the heart of a single mom part 2.

Intro:

I haven't blogged for quite a while now...ever since my laptop crashed I haven't really been able to sit down long enough in front of the computer and just gaze at the monitor till I get the "feel" of writing...and so I was doing that just now, thinking about what to blog about next...and I decided it would be good to give you guys a glimpse into the lives of single mothers.

I've written several blogs about a lot of random things (i wrote them on my other online journal) but the one of the things that really inspire me is when I write about single moms (all the joys, issues, and all the roller coaster emotions that go along with it). According to CBN.com, they say that
"There are 19 million single parents in the United States. Fifty-nine percent of American children will live in a single-parent family at least once during their minor years". The church has always been challenged to help single mothers and their children. James 1:27 says that "we should care for widows and orphans."

John 4:35 says:
"I tell you, open your eyes and look at the fields, coz they are ripe for harvest." Somehow, I'd like to be able to help in opening the world's eyes to see single mom's in a different light. I pray that through these blogs, people will open their eyes and see that they need not go far to help the fatherless & the orphans, coz they are everywhere. Single moms & their children need all the love and the support we can get. If you know a single mom - reach out to them - a phone call, a prayer, cooking them a dish or offering to take them & their children out will do wonders...coz the stress of raising a child alone is harder than you think.

If you are a single mom and you're reading this...I hope these blogs will help open your eyes to motivate you, encourage you, and help you embrace the beauty of being a single mother. No other job in the world is harder than being the lone bread-maker & home-maker at the same time. Hey, like I always say - we get to enjoy having the best of both worlds ;) Once again, to single parents: you are my heroes.

Ok...on with the blog....



THE HEART OF A SINGLE MOM (PART2)


I'd like to begin with the classic example of a single mom in the Bible - Hagar .

Genesis 16:3-4 "He slept with Hagar, and she conceived (NIV)..Later, when Hagar knew she was going to have a baby, she became proud and was hateful..."(CEV)

No matter how you became a single mother - whether it was getting pregnant out of wedlock, through divorce, or a death of a spouse - we all have to learn to deal with issues that face being a single mother. We women weren't designed to raise children on our own. And when it does happen to us, we somehow teach ourselves to "toughen up" because the situation calls for it. Hagar - when she learned she was going to have a baby, somehow found it in her heart to become proud & hateful...towards her mistress Sarai & to the father of her child - Abraham.

Like her, we single moms have to make sure to check our hearts and see if there is any thing in us that has caused us to "harden our hearts" and become proud, hateful and unforgiving. Despite the pain we've been through, it's never an excuse to be bitter and resentful against our child's father, against ourself, our children and most especially against God. Like the saying goes "We teach what we know but we impart who we are." Let us remember that our children are watching us, and if we continually gripe about our situations or complain in front of them about their "so-called absentee-dads", we're teaching our kids to learn not to be forgiving as well as teaching them to be ungrateful about life in general.

As hard as it may be in this given situation - learn to count your blessings and not your problems or your lack. I know, it's easier said than done. Trust me, I know what it feels like when all you can do is just cry coz problems are so overwhelming and there's no one to share it to but yourself. That happens. Let the pain out. Cry it all out - Breathe after - and learn to Live & enjoy life. We were created for so much more than just being anxious because of unpaid bills.

Instead of seeing the lack - look at the blessings and enjoy them. During bad times - I try hard to train myself to see that I am blessed. Blessed to have a son who loves me so much. Blessed to have a roof over my head. Blessed to be able to have family & friends who love me. Blessed to have a church family that supports me. My problems are still there, but my focus is on more positive things, because dwelling on past hurts & negative things won't get me anywhere. In the process, I'm teaching my son lessons that he will value in life as he gets older.

Mothers, let us be the good example that our children need to see. We are all they have. Let us not take that for granted. Let us not be resentful & bitter moms. Instead let us be the extraordinary moms who, although are raising children by ourselves, continue to count it all joy even when trials come. Because God has given us hope in Jesus and He's given us the best gift in the world - our kids. They deserve to be raised in healthy, happy homes that are full of love.