Consider the Lilies – 6/20/17

As part of the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus teaches the people who have gathered around. In Matthew 6, He is telling them that God loves and provides for everyone in His own way. Verse 28 says, “And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, (it’s a parable) how they grow; they toil not, nor do they spin.” 

There are many theories regarding this verse. But I learned spinning thread was a large task of daily life at this time, and He was referring to wildflowers in general, which are mainly purple in that region. Jesus always spoke in terms the masses would understand. He was endeavoring to teach the people of God’s unconditional love for flowers in the field, birds in the air, sheep in the meadow, and all the way up to us. He blesses those “lilies” with sunlight, nutrients in the soil, and rain from the sky. (They don’t do much, just grow.) But if He cares for such inane objects and gives them beauty (for nothing,) how much more do you think He cares for His spirit children?  

Part of the song goes: “He feeds the lambs in His fold (we are the lambs,) And He will heal those who trust him, And make their hearts as gold.” I venture to say our trials, big or small, are hard for our Heavenly Father to watch. (Just like a parent begrudgingly utilizes tough love.) But we agreed to come to earth, and be tested. (We signed up for this.) Some tests are more difficult than others. That’s how we grow, and become valuable, like gold. That’s how we prove ourselves to Him. Our Heavenly Father blesses each one of us according to our needs. We all get certain blessings and others are added based on our dedication (and trust) in Him and His Son like healing, for example.

There were early inspirational versions based on this scripture, but this song’s lyrics were written in 1980 by a gospel singer through the Spirit and out of appreciation. Roger Hoffman, the songwriter, explains his feelings toward the song, “This is the way of the Master. He tells us plainly that he has given us weakness to bring us to him. When we come unto him, he teaches, counsels, and heals us, replacing evil with good, pouring himself into us, a spiritual transfusion where his light replaces our darkness. The light he has put into us works its way through everything we know and feel and draws us to yet greater light.” (Heavy, but I believe it.) The Mormon Tabernacle choir has embraced this song and sing it often. I think it’s the best version.

I know that the wonderful blessings I am given come from God, our Heavenly Father. The lilies are blessed. The birds are blessed. And we are truly blessed. 

I have looked around myself and understand the tender mercies in my behalf, and I am humbled by the great love He has for me. (I suggest you look and see your blessings, too.)

I will always appreciate and adore this song. (And I will never gaze upon lilies the same way again!)

I Need Thee Every Hour – Tunes Tuesday 5/9/17

When someone like me must depend on so many imperfect people, who are just doing their best, you quickly realize where the number one source of strength originates. I Need Thee Every Hour is a humbling hymn. I turn my needs in my life over to the Lord. Some may ask, “Do you mean God or Jesus Christ?” (Yes, both.) I lean on Christ’s unfailing strength, solid integrity, life-changing example, and brotherly love. He bled from every pore on Calvary for my pain and struggles. My Heavenly Father unconditionally loves me, is cogniscent of my hardships, and is always available for me, just like a father. I need them both. But I can’t leave out the Holy Ghost, who comforts me constantly and helps me remember the important things. I will lean on each part of the Godhead, and I will have faith in their love, strength, and trust in their healing power. “In joy or pain…” This song has recently touched me much more than it ever has previously. The Anthem Lights version is incredible! Their a capella hymn arrangement is so hauntingly beautiful. I used to be annoyed by this hymn’s monotone alto line, but now the almost horizontal line of notes is something I can sing. (If I’m not crying.) I am thankful for such a beautiful reminder that I am not in this alone. “Stay thou nearby…” We all have a Heavenly support system that we can rely on unfailing. (I personally need it!)

How Great Thou Art – Tunes Tuesday 5/2/17

This song has been a favorite mine for as long as I can remember. It’s one of those songs that transcends religion. It speaks to all Christians, “with shout of acclamation.” Carrie Underwood sings it beautifully, and I truly believe her rendition. The wonderful melody brings the Spirit, and reminds of the incomparable love our God has for us. We all personally know what God has blessed us with and our own tender mercies. I think (gospel according to Kim) that we sang this song in the pre-existence.  When we hear it, we are deeply, even unconsciously, reminiscent of our time before earth, Then sings my soul..” He is our great King and loving Heavenly Father. Our love for Him comes through “in humble adoration” with this song as a vehicle. “I in awesome wonder” am cogniscent and grateful for the countless blessings I have, astonishly, been the recipient. “How great thou art!”

Lucky Blessing #15 – Heaven

Lucky Blessing Challenge #15- A Lucky Blessing is Heaven. 

Now I don’t want to get too heavy, I don’t want to preach. I’m just sharing how I see it. We were sent to earth to get a body and be tested. While we are here we are judged for the intents of hearts and our works. Some get different tests than others. (Thanks, I must have needed that!) Its my test to react well, or essentially pass it. We all have our personal tests like drugs and alcohol, spreading rumors, pride, sickness or just plain busy-ness. (My new word, you know, when you’re too busy for small important things, priorities.) The grade we get is which kingdom we get to live out our eternities and with whom. Now I know I’m being tested, and I have a lot to do to get an “A!” But I feel good in the thought that I will get extra credit for the intent of my heart. I’m trying. Our Father in Heaven knows and loves us. He wants us to return to Him and wants us to pass with flying colors. Our mission “if you choose to accept it” is act in the name of Christ who was sent to be our example. And if/when we stumble and fall, we can get up and try again. We can take the makeup test called repentance. I am not afraid of death, just the pain it would cause my family and friends. Heaven must be wonderful. The plan is so perfect, it must have been tweaked over countless years! Don’t forget to thank God for this awesome “plan of happiness” or lesson plan. We are immensely blessed!