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Lord

Calm Surrender

Calmly surrendered to serve our Lord…

Magic awes the spirit to be calm, and Rae Whitney has this quality, perhaps a real touch of the divine.

She has a direct line to the heavenly Father above, inspired by the Book of Common Prayer, by the King James Bible, and the outreach instilled by God as a mission for an inner circle of the faithful who sing praises in hymns.

Her faith is noble.

Rae has delivered her gifts in teaching by listening with an open mind always willing to extend a word of understanding.

I remember the first and last time I saw her and we conversed an hour ago.  I called to respectfully forewarn her before sending this out into the Universe.  She merely said it is good to have this outlet, and invited me to another blog by a remarkable, spiritual friend.  Her website is Aprilfiet, and it must be worthy of attention, or Rae would not have mentioned it.

Well, the calm risen in having met Rae Whitney was imbedded in my heart with the ultimate gift anyone can ever give or receive, time.  Those hours in minutes with seconds by days, months, and years counted by God’s precision, lifted me time and time again.  She said we recognized the friendship in each other; it is an honor to behold from her like an Oscar made of stars.  Her light hearted optimism crosses her lips with a smile. Keep Reading

One’s Endurance: a Grateful Immigrant’s Story

Sometimes the “A HA!” moment comes in a quote:

”  Let yourself silently be drawn by the strange pull of what you really love.  It will not lead you astray.” _Rumi

I’ll tell you how the sun rose, —
A ribbon at a time.
The steeples swam in amethyst,
The news like squirrels ran.
The hills untied their bonnets,
The bobolinks begun.
Then I said softly to myself,
“That must have been the sun!” _Emily Dickenson

One’s endurance is measured by the breadths taken day and night to survive rejection.  It is inexplicable to the unbeliever because the life of faith delivers an ever restoring, flowing Holy Spirit.  Without it, I could not have arrived at this moment in time.

I can count my encouragers.  Who are yours?

In this abundantly planted orchard of life, the fruits ripen to be chosen rather than discarded.  In today’s bowl, endurance is at the center; it has an old flavor recognizable for its ancient characteristics.  Its value is as long as the beginning of each day is observed.  It is delightful to the soul, gentle in texture and borders  on honey for sweetness.

I remember the aches clinging to my joints as I gathered a handful of acrylic paints, three preferred brushes, and a trusty folded stool to take along to the gate waiting as a blank canvas on a palette ready to receive the very Spirit in me.  It is in this laboriously searching to create a vessel to renew the luster of words written to welcome each soul that I found respite, consolation, and determination to honor a church whose people chose to invite my father to be their priest.painted in the far away right side…I wish I had taken a close up.  There is a squirrel with a bushy tail in the lower left and two bobolinks in the tree, North American migratory blackbirds.

I used my father’s magnifying glass to see “the onion” church so dubbed because of the shape of its steeple.  It is barely visible.  It is painted in the far away right side…I wish I had taken a close up shot.  There is a squirrel with a bushy tail in the lower left and two bobolinks in the tree, North American migratory blackbirds.  Go figure. Keep Reading

The Trust Perk

On a blustery, cold afternoon, the night comforter appeared as if brought by the wind to take away the light of day.  The tea kettle was on, and my son stoked the fire totally ready to sit for a supper of onion chicken soup.

We stared at the image and wondered, is it a frog ?  Maybe two?  An obstructed owl or a crab?  The heart spoke out to me.  It was a moment to be captured in a photograph.

The trust perk is in knowing that we can sweep the worries out the door and mop it off the floor.  Worries leave a dusty trace unkind to any luster.  The storms in life are like that.

If the following verse were to be read out loud, one would know the plea so plainly ladened with love, hope, faith, and trust.  All in one breadth, it is an answer to prayer.

” Do not worry about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.  And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.” __Philippians 4:6-7

In prayer trust is secured through our filters, by our guideposts.  We choose them as we go through life.  We speak to God, our Father.  We trust His Son, Jesus.   The perk is to be free of worries. Keep Reading

In My Heart

In my heart (and yours too) abides a longing for the ultimate good.  It was in the quiet afternoons when I could get away from the ever present mundane tasks, that I dared to retreat with a quote in honor of the day, for the sake of marking it as important, and mostly because its outpour could not last in my pocket.  My heart needed to live in acrylics, had to express in paint the gratitude for the time, place, and peace born within the compounds of the words.  That’s how the gates sobered the peace beyond my understanding.

Somehow the signs continued miraculously appear…  A visit inspired activity blossomed in the heart of a pineapple for me to share…

 

“i carry your heart with me ( carry it in my heart)….

here is the deepest secret nobody knows

( here is the rotor the root and the bud of the bud

and the sky of a tree called life:which grows

higher than soul can hope or mind can hide)

and this is the wonder that’s keeping the stars apart

i carry your heart ( i carry it in my heart)

__e.e. cummings

 

It was a time to come home for healing and Daniel, the oldest of four, came to harvest a pineapple from our garden.  Sometimes words fail us to have a salve to a problem, and that’s when doing the right possible thing leaves us refreshed…

To grow a pineapple, all one needs to do is slice the crown and place it in water for a few days to see the roots evolving.  Then it’s about putting it in ground and watering it to give it hope to thrive, just like humans…  The length of time may surprise you…  So much depends upon the weather…  and the sun does make a difference…  Maybe that’s where the warmth sweetens the juice.  They say the smaller ones are sweeter.  I seldom had one that wasn’t and some were even bigger.  Go figure.

 

 Daniel had called to say he was coming and I remembered him saying he was standing by the edge of a river near Hailley, Idaho.  In Sun Valley is where he first set his heart to learn the practice of being an adult.  What ?  I’m still working at it !
We unfold chapter by chapter…

Keep Reading

Annabeth the Preacher’s Daughter

Defining moments in our lives are carved in the air to stand as tall as statues.  They are the pillars in our gardens.  They remind us of who we became because of them.  They call to us in spirit when we have nowhere else to go, and their friendship never ends.  Each conversation is a beginning.  Each farewell reassures a reunion.  It is an ever flowing stream.

Friends have a voice that when heard it’s a song.  We can dance to its beat because we know it.  We are at ease.  Annabeth Miguel Sayles sat at the school’s office on the first day of her new job, answering the phone, looking through papers, and wearing a smile with an uncertain confidence.  She was the lone warrior at Horizon’s Academy in Haiku, and many were glad she could muster what it took to do the job so sorely needed to be fulfilled.  She looked like a Precious Moments Angel figurine.

She took to the helm ever so grateful to make do as a widow, a Mom of two adult children, and a grandma of three.  As I recall, there had been a shift in administration.  She amazingly orchestrated all that was needed even in delivering successful fundraisers held on a golf course on the West Maui Mountains in a building designed by Frank Lloyd Wright for Marilyn Monroe.  Getting along with everybody that came along required composure, tenacity, and a sense of humor.  Parents, teachers, administrators, aids, and students all passed by her and needed her for this or that, and she answered and took care to see that all was done and completed.  She stayed long hours.  Her elegance was prime.

In the midst of school functions, we discovered in conversation a mutual torch: being preachers’ daughters.  I think we both said simultaneously now that is funny !  Something about her natural beauty, her stately humility, her steadfast faith, her sincere devotion to family, her admirable strength of spirit, her common sense, and her discreet attention to the needs of others, set her apart. Her character qualities are imprinted on a solid marble like presence in attendance in my life.  The details of cruelties she endured are locked in a room of confessions in the heart of hearts.  We got it from our fathers who prayed to Our Father.  We were cemented. Keep Reading

The Bit I Know…and GREAT LENT

“Great Lent is intended to be a’workshop ‘ where the character of the believer is spiritually uplifted and strengthened; where his life is rededicated to the principles and ideals of the Gospel; where fasting and prayer culminate in deep conviction of life; where apathy and disinterest turn into vigorous activities of faith and good works. ”  __WIKIPEDIA

Even though my father was an Orthodox priest, life distanced me from the life I lived before leaving home.  The tapestry is intricately woven with stories created by choices.  We can all take responsibility for some, maybe most.  The colorful and the shadowed defining moments of our lives,  stand to deliver outcomes we revisit.  In the ancient Orthodox Church, the believers aim to obey the Sacraments, and it is daunting to explain without appearing to be on a mission to convert people to the first Christian Church.

My intent is to invite you to meet my understanding about the misunderstandings of Christianity even among Christians.  Since I am not a theologian, please excuse my seemingly shallow though heartfelt observation.  It all begins with the realization that all humans are flawed.  We love one another despite our hurtful ways that cause the chaos we certainly witness in our present society.  Despite the phenomenal technological and scientific progress, humanity is in the process of revisiting the history being denied to be taught as it truly happened even at the fall of the Roman Empire.  Humans have souls in progress and yet due to unknown forces, be they evil or good, we join together in disagreements as well as in agreements with others.  We surrender to survive.  Our minds hold the tools for our survival, and our hearts align with whatever we consciously and unconsciously choose to believe.  The concessions we make along the way through the years have all to do with our upbringing.  Therefore, parents and guardians bare a huge responsibility. Keep Reading

Angel Mission and Billy Graham

“Everyone entrusted with a mission is an Angel” __Maimonides

Reverend Billy Graham left footprints traced to heaven.  His passionate devotion reached hearts, minds, and souls.  I heard him preach on television, and remember his fervent authority.  His faith unquestionably poured from a source of love.  His divine calling soared as we think of angels.  I think heaven is celebrating his soul’s arrival.  I feel in my own heart God has said, “A job well done.”  He took his life on a mission and the mission to speak to all about the word of God in the Bible, became his angelic quest.  Even so, he humbly kept his wings tucked.

” Once, as we dashed onward like a hurricane, there was a flutter of wings and the bright appearance of an angel in the air, speeding forth on some heavenly mission.”  __ Nathaniel Hawthorne, The Celestial Railroad

When I think of  the mean spirited chatter, I look away and pray for a better world with devoted to God people.  I pray we can give the chaos a piece of our peace, serve it with equal authority, with confidence.  I pray for divine intervention to stop the madness and bring about more visions of angels.  May we be blessed with the mission to make a difference.  May we ask to fulfill it. Keep Reading

FAITH, HOPE, and LOVE

Isn’t it funny how we meet people seemingly accidentally and then discover life would never have been the same without them ?  Jeannette sat alone in church, and one Sunday, I made it a point to join her.  We sang out of tune at St. John’s Episcopal Church in Keokea on Maui.  We chatted and I invited her for tea and lunch to be company for my Mom.  The two cocooned on the couch and spoke one or the other always smiling and nodding.  I wasn’t quite sure they understood any words as Jeannette tried to remember the French and my Mom would slide into Romanian yet they still cordially carried on like two birds in flight from tree to shrub and twig to fence.  The household seemed livelier as Jeannette came along in rides to the stores, and stayed to help me in the kitchen.  She insisted on holding my cutting board as I chopped peppers, onions, and carrots galore.  We meshed in stirring, mashing, and pouring while doting on my Mom with a little of this and that.  We found laughter in the fridge, on the stove, and over the table.  Little by little we said it all and she was there to dry my tears and understood what I could not.  She was the HOPE I wished in life for a friend.  She said I was the FAITH she needed to hear from a friend.  Her story carved a statue in marble.  Her strength dissolved iron.  Her gentleness feathered a breeze.

Even now that she departed, I wish to be nearer—she was a lady of poise galore.  Sometimes, I stop and sense her presence, perhaps it’s just the memory.  Ours was a friendship born in prayer.  I HOPE as she hoped.

Alike I had become friends with Cindy whom I visited at Upcountry Legends, her store.  She called my little guys “the group” and somehow from the start we cinched a friendship in conversation about God.  Yeah, the island attracts all kinds of people.  We met to talk about everything God related.  She gave me  a book that sits on my shelf A PARENTHESIS IN ETERNITY, by JOEL S. GOLDSTEIN.  Of its entire content which I love, her note on the cover is best and filled with her LOVE …and that is Cindy’s story.  Petit and smart even as a child, she still walks on clouds as her mother appropriately reminded the family.  She was born and raised in New York City, and used her daughter’s name for the shoe store: Taryn.  I honestly don’t know how she sold anything as she mostly spoke to everyone of God.  We cannot exhaust the topic and this is where Jeannette joined the party.  We three nested our lives in resolving the craters of sadness by refusing to stay stuck in the “mucks.”  We mastered the art of finding the best in the moment.  Our dearest Cindy was the one among us who as a child prayed to God for wisdom.  I was stumped and ashamed as I prayed for pretty knees.   Keep Reading

Mourning For Loved Ones

So many Families and Friends mourn for loved ones today.  Valentine’s Day of 2018, a birth date for many, a love giving day for most, was tragically marked with grief by our entire nation.  Yes, there are those who shamefully shirk the incident as an American problem or a gun control issue, or God knows how they are thinking by adding their venom towards our President Trump.  It is no wonder we are so confused in our sorrow.  It is no wonder a lost and lonely misguided soul can go so awry in culture imbued in violence, using foul language, and lack of respect and compassion.

The sadness is too deep to address without asking God for mercy.  The souls departed while their  bodies listless and bloodshed show the senselessness of misplaced anger and hatred flung upon them.  However, the truth is when things don’t make sense, everyone who notices, must seek help.  It is only in helping the hurt that we can stop the hurt from hurting.

Communication is paramount.  We must learn to speak to another and do so in the spirit of kindness.  We must have a place where the desperate can go to find compassion.  With the bashing of religion, the taking away of prayer at the beginning of the day in schools, the ridiculing of our President and Vice President for being men of faith, and the acceptance of the hideous, disrespectful ways broadcasted by the uneducated, inept, and radical liberals, no wonder the misdirected can cause us to have bleeding hearts all across the nation. Keep Reading