Thursday, September 18, 2014

New Contributor for the Devotions Page

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Flora Reigada has been a guest on Whispers in Purple a number of times  in the past, and I am delighted to have her as a contributor to my new Devotions page on the blog.

Flora’s post is intended to be a series of pieces from her devotional book: Where Your Heart Meet’s God’s. I think you’ll find it interesting and read-worthy by helping draw us closer to God.

You’ll find her post at: http://www.whispersinpurple.com/p/devotions.html

or . . . just click on the DEVOTIONS tab on the menu bar.

Our contributors, so far, have been Lucy Neeley Adams, and now Flora, and you can read their “bio’s” pm the CONTRIBUTORS tab.

Do you write devotional articles, or have a book of devotions, and would like to share them with Whispers in Purple devotions, use the CONTACT tab and let me know. Include a brief description of what you have.

Thanks!

Monday, September 15, 2014

An Anecdotal Truth

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A young couple moves into a new neighborhood.

The next morning, while they were eating breakfast, the young woman sees her neighbor hanging the wash outside.

“That laundry is not very clean. She doesn’t know how to wash correctly. Perhaps she needs better laundry soap.”

Her husband looks on, remaining silent.

Every time the neighbor hangs her wash to dry, the young woman makes the same comments.

A month later, the woman is surprised to see a nice, clean wash on the line and says to her husband, “Look, she’s finally learned how to wash correctly. I wonder who taught her this?”

The husband replies, “I got up early this morning and cleaned our windows.”

And so it is with life . . . what we see when watching others depends on the clarity of the window through which we look.

Source unknown.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

You Say / God Says

I found a slip of paper in my Bible during my morning devotions. I’ve probably posted this before, but it’s been a long time ago, so I though I’d share it with you again. It has merit.


You Say:


God Says:

“It’s impossible” All things are possible 
Luke 18:27
“I’m too tired” I will give you rest
Matthew 11:28-30
“Nobody really loves me” I love you
John 3:16 & John 3:34
“I can’t go on” My grace is sufficient
2 Cor 12-9 & Ps 91:15
“I can’t figure things out” I will direct your steps
Proverbs 3:5-6
“I can’t do it” You can do all things
Philippians 4:13
“I’m not able” I am able
2 Corinthians 9:8
“It’s not worth it” It will be worth it
Romans 8:28
“I can’t forgive myself” I forgive you
1 John 1:9 & Romans 8:1
“I can’t manage” I will supply all your needs
Philippians 4:19
“I’m afraid” I have not given you a spirit of fear
2 Timothy 1:7
“I’m always worried and frustrated” Cast all your cares on ME
1 Peter 5:7
“I’m not smart enough” I give you wisdom
1 Corinthians 1:30
“I feel all alone” I will never leave you or forsake you
Hebrews 13:5

Sunday, August 31, 2014

What God Did Not Promise

It has been a week or more of rain, thunder storms, cool temperatures and cloudy skies with little or no sun.  Gloomy, almost depressing. My body craves, no, needs the sun.

All week long, more often than not, those overhead clouds would darken and, with little warning, they’d open with drenching downpour, giving us barely enough time to take cover.

After a bad storm Friday and into Saturday, toward evening, that missing sun appeared just in time to cast a golden-purple glow through the trees at the western edge or our property.

At first I grumbled, “Oh, sure, now you show up only to disappear in just a few minutes.”  Then I stopped the complaints, thinking, Isn’t that just like God? After a dreary, wet week, He gave us that brief, beautiful sunset. Like Noah’s rainbow, was it God’s promise of a better day to come?

Saturday night, after full darkness fell, I stepped outside beneath a clear sky peppered with stars. What a joyful, peaceful sight. And Sunday morning? Bright and sunny with some clouds, a (normally) typical , beautiful, Wisconsin day.

You know, God never said our walk with Him would be easy. He never promised us a bed of roses, or that this life on earth would be a bowl of cherries. There will be times when we end up with nothing more than a bed full of thorns and a bowl full of pits. Jesus told us point-blank that we would have troubles. We will have sudden downpours of them. We will have dark, cloudy days . ..days of despair and disappointments. Times of hopelessness. Times when we wonder if we’ll ever see that sun again.

But that sun rises and sets every day, and, just like God, is always there. Guaranteed, even if we can’t see it, or Him. Nevertheless, they are both there. Always.

Here is the last stanza of a little poem written by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, called Rainy Day. I thought appropriate:
Be still, sad heart! and cease repining;
Behind the clouds is the sun still shining;
Thy fate is the common fate of all,
Into each life some rain must fall,
    Some days must be dark and dreary.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Waiting for a New Beginning Isn’t Easy

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Photo by: File photos A new beginning — Days of emptiness gave way to days of purpose. Now a former inmate visits inmates himself and tells his story of teen-age rebellion and hopelessness.  

 

Below by guest columnist, Lucy N. Adams | Dec 27, 2013 (reprinted here with permission)


Waiting for a new beginning isn’t easy. The New Year is a fine time to have one, but if it doesn’t happen in January. It may come in the spring, summer or fall. I watched one happen in the life of a young man from a jail and it was heartwarming.  He is now a dear friend and brother in Christ. This is our story.


Mike's parents sadly watched as he made terrible choices in his young life.  They tried in vain to help guide him another way.  But he kept getting into trouble with the police. When he wrecked his motorcycle, he ended up in the hospital.  Since he was on drugs at the time, he also faced the worst consequence of his life — jail.


However, after several months of good behavior in jail, Mike was given the privilege of “work release” to return to his plumbing job.  Each morning he left to go to work and faithfully returned in the afternoon.  Just as I was leaving the jail one afternoon after visiting a young girl inmate, I saw a boy coming in the front door.  He looked like the boy named Mike from the picture his mother had shown me.


I got permission from the officer at the front desk to sit in the lobby and visit with Mike before he must return to his cell.  He welcomed me by saying, “I heard you were the new preacher’s wife at the church my family goes to.” His smile reached from one dimpled cheek to another.  It went straight to my heart.


“Yes, I know your family.  It will be great when you can come back too,” I said, hoping for a positive response.  I grinned as I said, “Maybe you can get ‘church-release’ the same as you do for your job.”


Mike’s eyes stared at the floor as he said he was embarrassed to face his old friends there.  He added, “Miss Lucy, they’re doing just fine without me down there.”


I continued to visit the jail and one day I discovered that Mike sang beautifully to the guitar music from  his cell mate. Again, I asked about his coming to church.  This time I mentioned the choir.

 
“We really need your strong voice, Mike,”  I said.


He liked the idea.


So the new rule was set for his “church-release” each Sunday morning.  The choir director happily received him into the tenor section.  The long white robe and gold stole around his neck set the scene perfectly for Mike — the handsome new choir member.  After church he always faithfully returned to jail, just as he had promised.


The first Sunday, as we took our seats in the choir loft, I glanced at the row behind me in order to smile at Mike with a whispered, “Great to have you here.”


I was astounded.  The man who sang tenor next to him was the stern judge who had sentenced him to jail several months ago.  Now they would be singing God’s praises in the same church choir.  It was almost too good to be true.


I never got up the courage to ask Judge Cole how he felt about this arrangement.  I had no idea how this old traditional, elite congregation would react to the choir participation of an inmate from the country. 


But I discovered their love for Mike was very sincere.  And there were many happy people the day his final release came. The jail sentence was over.  After months of leaving jail to come to church, the whole family could come together.


But the next Sunday Mike was not in the choir.  My heart was broken. I remembered sad experiences with other inmates who returned to their old habits.  I wondered what Mike would do with his new freedom.


I was relieved when I saw him sitting in the balcony with his parents.  He seemed to be attentive, but at the end of the service during the last hymn, he left.  His parents watched him go and it was a confusing scene.


In a moment I knew what was happening.  Mike had come down the stairs and was coming into the sanctuary to the altar rail.  My pastor husband greeted him warmly and Mike whispered something to him.  He wanted to re-commit his life to Christ.


In a few moments his parents joined him at the altar and the smiles and tears of joy were indicative of new beginnings in that dear family. 
Days of emptiness gave way to days of purpose.  Mike returned to school and trained for a vocation. He became a vital part of our youth group, hoping to guide them to profit from his mistakes.


An important dimension of his new life today is visiting inmates in prison. When he tells the story of his teen-age rebellion and hopelessness, it is wrapped in God’s mercy, love and forgiveness.


To this day, as I remember Mike in jail and Mike in church, I believe I know some of that new beginning. It was the first Sunday he was in that long white choir robe with the golden stole around his neck, singing with the judge.


Reach Lucy N. Adams  at Lucya424@aol.com or visit Visit www.52hymns.com.

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