Saturday, March 31, 2012

Your Productive Kingdom?

Our people must learn to do good by meeting the urgent needs of others; they they will not be unproductive. -Titus 3:14 NLT

Is it just me, or does this verse seem to go against our 'grain'?

Read it once, it sounds great!

But read it twice and you go "Whoa! Wait!"


What comes to mind when you hear that word?

To-Do list, deadlines, writing letters, making phone calls, mopping floors, grocery shopping, mow the lawn, the list goes on and on.

Each check mark earns us a productive point, no?

But hold the horses, this verse says productive lives come by meeting the urgent needs of others. How does that work?

Let's all admit, it can be frustrating when someone interrupts our focused, get-it-done attitude with a request, right?

It seems contrary to think we can be more productive by fulfilling those little interruptions, doesn't it?

But then...I think therein lies the point.

We serve a God who operates on a different 'economy system', a Kingdom that is contrary.

Me, I and My rule in the kingdom of To-Do-Lists and productivity, but His Kingdom To-Do-List reads more like this,

"Feed my sheep..." (John 21:17)
                     "Love one another..." (John 13:34)

                                         "Encourage each other...." (1 Thess. 5:11, Heb. 3:13)

                                                                         "Pray for one another..." (James 5:16)

At the end of the day the floor may still be muddy, but the waters of someone's heart clear.

That delicious meal you planned may have been replaced with sandwiches, but the family that just lost a loved one need not worry because you took time to feed their hurting hearts as well their bellies.

You may not home as soon as you wanted after a crazy day at work, but at least that lady didn't walk home in the rain 'cause you gave her a ride.

In a Father's economy, He sees after all of His children. And He lets us help!

Through the process, we lose 'self', lose fear, lose mistrust, and that sounds like spiritual productiveness doesn't it?

This thing is a two way street.

Hope to see you on it. :)

Sunday, March 25, 2012

The Least of These

Photo from Flickr
Does it really matter?!

       Will this even make a difference?

                    What am I doing?

Me. Last week. These questions.

Been there?

I know you have.

Cause we ALL have.

We all struggle, all reach, all strive, all wonder. We want to make a difference, be successful, leave a mark on this crazy world.

Some are given platforms which the world looks at and says 'wow', but most of us live 'normal' lives, and some of us live seemingly small me.

I was once a waitress, then an office hand, then a journalist, then an ad salesman; I was in contact with lots of people everyday.

And now, after the dust of God's hand at work has settled, I'm in a place, be it far more peaceful than before, that is indeed very small.  Have you been there too?

Where I used to see to the needs to business men, now I see to the needs to an aged widow.
Where once I fed my editor front page stories, now I feed this woman.

I used to write stories, now I listen to hers.

No longer interviewing doctors, now I serve as one.

And one day, I stopped and said to myself.

    "Lord, I know this matters to her, and I know this is where you have placed me, but today I don't feel very important. No one sees what I do, does it even matter or not if I keep her house clean or give her bath, or make sure her shoes are polished?!"

No sooner had I uttered these words than a gentle whisper floated through my heart,

"The least of these...."

I stopped in my tracks.

"I was hungry....I was thirsty...I  was looked after Me." (Matthew 25:34-40)

The rest of the verse came flooding back to mind, and with it came a deep reassurance and peace.

The little things we do matter.

They are seen.

Today as I sat down to write this entry, I wasn't quite sure if I should publish it, so in between writing I check my e-mail. I was amazed by what I found waiting for me. A daily Bible verse reading,

"So, my dear brothers and sisters, be strong and immovable. Always work enthusiastically for the Lord, for you know that nothing you do for the Lord is ever useless." 1 Cor. 15:58 NLT.

How amazing!

Again, that peace and reassurance came.

I believe someone needed to read this today, was it you?

Let's remember together that our platform may be as small as as stepping stool that dusts the ceiling fan of an old ladies house, but it matters...

It matters.

Saturday, March 17, 2012


I stumbled upon this poem today and wanted to share it with you. These are truths, let them sink in, take root and heal your soul.~

My Identity In Christ

Because of Christ's redemption,
I am a new creation of great worth.

I am deeply loved,
completely forgiven,
fully pleasing,
totally accepted by God,
and absolutely complete in Christ.

There has never been another person like me
in the history of mankind,
nor will there ever be.
God has made me original,
on of a kind, really somebody!

~Unknown Author~

Thursday, March 15, 2012

A New Hat

Hey there everyone!
Just wanted to let y'all know that I started another blog Gladness of Heart.

Why another blog? Well, this new blog will have a different purpose and feel to it, it is intended to be a more lighthearted blog where I can post daily going ons, family news, projects, things that have inspired me and other random things I would like to share!

It is kind of like a different pair of shoes or another 'hat' as they say. Streams in the Wasteland is meant to be a devotional, a spiritual blog, and I just couldn't bring myself to post about anything other than that. I will continue to post here, but I wanted to branch out and not be quite so limited to my posts.

And so, I hope you will visit me at my other blog soon!

God bless.

Friday, March 9, 2012


Life is fleeting.

Life is never a given.

Things can change in an instant.

Today, after coming home from working and a normal run of the mill day, I was struck with the sudden news that one of my best friend's sister had passed away. She was 28. She died after a lengthy battle with cancer.

It was one of those fears that lurked in my mind, but she had been doing fine lately, she was going through treatment, she was fighting.

And then the next moment she is gone.

It is a moment in time that can change the rest of life.

"Show me, O LORD, my life's end and the number of my days; let me know how fleeting is my life."- Psalm 39:4 NIV

I am working as a caretaker for a 98 year old woman. Talk about the fragility of life. She is a spunky, healthy woman for her age. She is amazing honestly.

She lives on her own, she can still get around pretty good, she even gardens and works out in the yard! Smart, and sharp as a tack.

But not too long ago, things changed for her. She had a fall. Her body had recovered, but her mind and memory were altered from the medications.

As she takes me through her house, for a second time, she points to the many faces in frames hanging on her walls....and she can't tell me all of their names.

She has told me several great childhood memories...several times. She can't remember my name, she can't remember what all happened yesterday, and she asks more than once what day it is.

Things can change in a moment.

Life is precious....fragile...and fleeting. People respond to this differently. Some go through life holed up in a stagnant box afraid of everything around them, the what if's and unknowns.

"Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?"- Matthew 6:27 NIV

Others blaze ahead recklessly in an effort to suck every last ounce of 'life' from their days... each one of these approaches is wrong, and actually drains the life from you rather than preserving it.

My approach?

Know Who holds your life. I don't have to walk around in fear that I'll fall one day and drop that fragile crystal hourglass and it will all be over. No, He holds my times and numbers my days. He is in control.

"Man's days are determined; you have decreed the number of his months and have set limits he cannot exceed."- Job 14:4 NIV

Isn't it much more comforting to know Someone is in charge of something so valuable? Not you yourself, random chance or others around you, but a loving, personal God who has a plan for you?

Yes, life is fleeting and fragile...let Someone else take care of it for you, huh?

"For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me and for the gospel will save it."- Mark 8:35 NIV

Treasure what you have in THIS day, recognize the gift it is, and trust the rest to Him.

* Do you have any more verses to add to this?  Share them in the comments.

PS- Please be in prayer for my dear friend and her family. Their loss breaks my heart, even though we know this young lady is no longer suffering and with Jesus, the loss is real and hard.