noses So early this morning,  after a long holiday vacation,  this is the sight I see….

The hilarity of it only continued…

…as said child asked….

“Why does “this” keep coming out?”

Unsure of how to respond, I said, “You’re boogies?”  Yeah, she said.

So yes, I had  a small (but meaningful) discussion about mucus and its purposes for keeping your y healthy.

“It’s gross.”,  she said.  I know, there’s a lot of it in your body and it’s supposed to stay inside your body. But when you’re sick it comes out and it helps to keep boo boos out of your nose. “Well, its yucky.”

So what else can I say…its mucus

seek… look, find, in search of, quest, search by questioning, obtain, try or attempt, to go to, to ask for, request, explore…
…God, truth, mystery, faith.
As 2014, has rolled away to the yesterday of my focus on belonging – Where to I belong? Who do I belong to? Do I belong? – it has evolved into the hunger for deeper truths, binding truths and roots of faith. In a world so upside down, disjointed and marginalized – unity is lacking, even among the faithful of God’s people. Even as my “restless” soul tried to nestle into the Lord – I felt a void – a sense of completion, certitude, assurance was still evading me. There was more that I wasn’t seeing…I needed to seek…the Lord.

But if from [there] you seek the Lord your God, you will find him if you look for him with all your heart and with all your soul. Deuteronomy 4:29

Seek-3

Though I had been through an amazing year of true joys, true sorrows and true redemption, I was so confused. I was anything but certain that I had found my place. No, the Lord had more in store for me – seek. Why? I have everything. I am so comfortable. I have a good thing going on. People need me. No seek. What? Seek what? Seek more…

Glory in his holy name; let the hearts of those who seek the Lord rejoice. Look to the Lord and his strength; seek his presence always.
1 Chronicles 16:10-11

seek-godMore. Of God…I was already overwhelmed and had a lot going on. But seek more of God. Ok. So digging deep into the roots of who God created me to be and deep into the knowledge and truth of who God is…I will seek…

If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land. 2 Chronicles 7:14
Those who know your name will trust in you, for you, Lord, have never forsaken those who seek you.
Psalm 9:10
Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened. Matt. 7:7-8, Luke 11:9-10
From one man he made every nation of men, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he determined the times set for them and the exact places where they should live. God did this so that men would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from each one of us. “For in him we live and move and have our being.” As some of your own poets have said, ‘We are his offspring.’ Acts 17:26-28
And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him. Hebrews 11:6

…I am not just seeking verses that contain the word “seek”…it is all a matter of faith, belief and mystery. I am seeking God’s truth, God’s plan…because all other “truths” and “plans” have failed me. It has caused hurt and schisms and led to restlessness and ingratitude. This year, this day, this moment in the wake of God’s revealing purposes – one joy at a time and one gift at a time – it is time to take a perspective shift. As His purposes are being revealed, coupled with seeing God’s gifts being used – I will SEEK, praise, trust and give thanksEucharisteo. (One Thousand Gifts, 2008)
Seek2
Seek ye first the kingdom or God and His righteousness, and all [your needs] shall be given to you…Matthew 6:33

Happy Blessed New Year,
Shariprpl

GreatGiftI may be a year late but it was worth it never the less. This would not be the first Christmas where gifts were not the focus. There have been several seasons over the last decade when the Christmas focus was more about presence than presents. This year proved the importance of the presence of Jesus – THE Greatest Gift.

This December I had the opportunity to lead a small group for the four weeks of advent – using Ann Voskamp’s The Greatest Gift ~ Unwrapping the Full Love Story of Christmascomplete with resources for Jesse Tree Ornaments. I have to admit I was fed more than I led. And that is a great gift of the presence of Christ in this Christmas season. Going into this advent season , I knew it would be hard – our family had lost my father this past July and Yuletide Greetings, merry making and festivities were the furthest things from my mind. So in an effort to drown out the noise of the hustle and bustle, I was longing for some comfort and joy. And I made it to the other side of Christmas – broken and hurting, worn out and tired. I felt a sense of certitude yet still questioning – What is the Greatest Gift? Was is Jesus? Love? Hope? Peace? Joy? As a leader of this group – I felt I had missed it – the greatest gift. I feared that in the midst of Christmas rush that I had missed the point. I was sure that Jesus was the gift we were talking about – the arrival of the long awaited Messiah is what Advent is all about.

Still, I felt left out of the message – though I was not. By Christmas Eve I was emotional and hollow for the presence of my father and family – and as quickly as I had sunken into my hurt the words came – ‘Rejected at the inn, holy God comes in small to where you feel rejected and small. God is with you now. Wherever you are – in a soundless cry or hidden brokenness or in your ache – God always wants to be with you. You are not ever left alone in this. We are never left alone in this; GOD is with us.’ The Greatest Gift, pg 246.
JesseTree
I believe that is exactly what Jesus came for – this is why we celebrate, this is why remember, this is the greatest gift – Jesus the greatest gift. Love the greatest gift – He did it for love. The presence of Christ; the God-man  – there are no Christmas presents that compare to this. Immanuel, God with us. We are never alone and we are loved.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Love came down at Christmas,
Love all lovely, Love Divine,
Love was born at Christmas,
Star and Angels gave the sign.

Worship we the Godhead,
Love Incarnate, Love Divine,
Worship we our Jesus,
But wherewith for sacred sign?

Love shall be our token,
Love shall be yours and love be mine,
Love to God and all men,
Love for plea and gift and sign.
Christina RossettiChristmastide (1885)

And we have known and believed the love that God has for us. God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God, and God in him. ~1 John 4:16

Merry, Merry Christmas.
Sharired

So I am a little late on this one. Yet it speaks to the heart. In celebration of All Soul’s Day and All Saint’s Day may we remember those who have touched our lives in a mighty way a led us closer to the Lord Jesus Christ and His saving grace.

Many Sunday Blessings,
Shariprpl

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