Somethingspiritual’s Blog

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Return to my baptismal home

st. philipWhen I heard we were going to St. Philip for our weekly chapel, I got really excited.   I had wanted to return to St. Philip for a long time, and never made it a priority.   But this day we were headed there to worship and encourage the leaders of this ever transitional community.   I wondered if I would feel something special when I returned.  I wondered if I would remember the building…the place my parents brought me as a newborn and partnered with the community upon my baptism nearly 50 years ago.    I was not disappointed.

The church looks pretty much the same, and upon entering the Sanctuary, the stained glass window draws you in, just like it did many years ago.    I bounced with excitement, knowing that the God of yesterday, today and tomorrow still shines, and still calls us to come and enter His presence.

Corey Shores, Worship Leader/Student Pastor, and the worship team of St. Philip welcomed the Mt. Bethel staff, and led us in an invitation to worship God and lay down our burdens.   Letting down my wall of worry and responsibility is a well known block for me that tries to keep me from encountering God.   It is a wall that I have allowed, and I still struggle at times to open up my soul.   But just like that stained glass window that shines the light of day and the light of Christ, God can use even me to shine His light.   This message was made clear to me again when Pastor Steve Brumbeloe reminded us of the faithful woman who just wanted to touch the garment of Jesus….He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering.”  Mark 5:34

What amazing freedom, if only we will let our wall down and allow God to shine through us.    I immediately felt called to pray for all people in the St. Philip community who have their walls up.    I pray that they have the courage to come encounter the one Light that shines through Corey and the worship team at St. Philip.   I pray that walls come down and the grace of our Savior will shine upon them.


Watching this video of the announcement of the new POPE, and you can’t help but be excited and filled with Hope.    I’m so glad Father Roderick is podcasting and helping us understand this historical moment.    His enthusiasm is infectious.    

Many Protestants are asking, “why should we care about a new pope…..we don’t worship him!”    Hopefully, no one worships the Pope, but there is still great joy and hopefulness that He will lead the Church (the Roman Catholic church, but also the universal church to some extent) to be more credible, more compassionate, more peaceful.    

There is much uncertainty, more than I have ever felt, in my world….mostly for my country. I must rely on God more than ever that no matter what happens, God is in control.     More than ever, we need to tend to today and not worry about tomorrow.    

So today, we can all take great hope in a new leader to bring about humility in all of us.       

2 Chronicles 7:14

New International Version (NIV)

14 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 I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.


Lord, in your mercy……………………..

Hungry for God

I have to wonder if I’m really hungry for God. I hope I am. You would think someone who says they are a Christ follower would actually be hungry for God…. ready and willing to listen for God’s voice and direction in life. But maybe I haven’t been. For a long time I’ve been in survival mode just trying to cope to maintain my role as wife, mother of 3, and employee at a large church. Some days it’s all I can do. Listening for God requires you to be clutter free, ready to listen, and ready to act. I haven’t felt prepared for that for a long time. and Yet my spirit is willing. I’ve been lazy. Listening for God is a discipline… an exercise. It takes work and I haven’t found the time to engage and yet if it’s important to me I will find the time….I will make the time. I have similar excuses for my physical health. I haven’t taken the time to do what I need to do. I feel guilty for not spending more time on housework or more time with my kids. I’m full of excuses. Lord I want to be hungry for you. I want to hear your voice in my life. I want to live according to your will. Work with me right where I am to develop the disciplines I need to hear you. Help me to desire You above anything else. May I live as an instrument of your peace every day. Lord, in your mercy……


I really dislike organized holidays. There is so much pressure to get the right gift, go to the best event, or do the right thing. What is ever good enough? And yet holidays are the best time to express thankfulness and gratitude.

Luke 17:18-19 NIV


Has no one returned to give praise to God except this foreigner?”  Then he said to him, “Rise and go; your faith has made you well.”

You never know if you might not get another chance. Tell someone thank you for making a difference.


I really dislike organized holidays. There is so much pressure to get the right gift, go to the best event, or do the right thing. What is ever good enough? And yet holidays are the best time to express thankfulness and gratitude.

Luke 17:18-19 NIV


Has no one returned to give praise to God except this foreigner?”  Then he said to him, “Rise and go; your faith has made you well.”

You never know if you might not get another chance. Tell someone thank you for making a difference.


If we don’t watch it, life can pull us down in a tailspin of busyness and responsibilities.   And if we don’t make time for reflection, meditation, and worship, we (I mean, I ) will find myself empty of anything spiritually enriching I can hold on to.      What a waste.   

Today I was able to experience some Advent meditation time at various stations in the style of Catechesis (a Montessori type Christian education program).    Soft music played, lights were strong enough to read, but dimmed.    Many stations had you light your own candle.       At each station, we read various sections of the Christmas story, or the prophecy of Jesus.   

Here are some of my reflections:

  • The wise men had to TRUST as they followed that star.    Do I have that Trust in God?
  • The Christmas story has a theme of humility and poverty.   We try to avoid these things.    How can we embrace where we are?
  • God will bring the LIGHT and bring us out of darkness.
  • When Mary was with Elizabeth her heart “leapt for joy”.    What makes your heart leap with joy?
  • What about me makes people call me Blessed?
  • Bethlehem means House of Bread.    Here, with Jesus, God nourished us.  
  • God has nourished me by giving me a mind and body to feel Him, know Him, love Him and serve Him.
  • NOTHING is impossible with God.   
  • Lord, let me offer all that I am for the mercy of your plan just like you did for Mary. 
  • What is the treasure in your heart?
  • Seek, and ye shall find.
  • Emmanuel…..God with us.     God, dwell in me.   

What really matters

I’m connected to a prayer chain and get the privilege of praying for people who are ill or injured.  Erik battled cancer as a child, and then again as a teenager and college student.   He recently lost his battle here on earth, but it is evident that God needed this courageous soul for greater good.     His family recently shared this old entry in his journal.    I want to be like Erik.

Friday, December 22, 2006 5:36 AM CST

Last night in the hospital. Transfusions are all over. Two down, eight to go. Now I just have to wait to feel better. Before that happens, it’s just one more sleepless night in the hospital… what is this doing to my brain?

I’ve been called a lot of things since I started treatment. “Hero” “Awesome” “an Inspiration” “Impressive”. Everyone knows I have a huge pain tolerance. I just don’t like to complain. I’m not going to lie though–it’s hard being sick all the time. All I want to do is go back to work, go to school, have a normal life. That seems so distant now. So why didn’t I get a normal life? Why did I have to be a “hero”? Always wonder just what it is that I’m doing that makes me a hero anyway. Just because I’m bearing all the pain? Or is it because I keep surviving? I don’t think anyone enters the battlefield assuming they are going to be the one still standing at the end of the day. And what about all my fallen comrades? Does anyone know how guilty it can make you feel?

Cancer doesn’t just mess with your health–it changes your whole mindset. Suddenly all the goals and ambitions of everyone living out the “American Dream” seem so pointless because this close to the edge, you know exactly how much good it’s going to do you once you are gone. You can’t help but want them, like everyone else does–that’s what society trains you to think. But what I really want is something that will not go away no matter what. I can’t describe how much it helps me to know that so many people care about me and pray for me. It’s something I think about all the time. Human relations are so much more valuable than anything material.

Cancer can do two things to you: make you stronger or make you insane. I believe I’ve tasted both. But if God did this for a purpose, it’s going to be pointless if I don’t figure out a way to make the experience useful. I can tell you it has already made me a more compassionate person. It means so much to be able to help someone out–to give back for everything that’s been given to me. Even the little things that mean so much… like having a good friend to talk to late at night when you really needed it. It’s not that hard to completely brighten someone’s day.

Thanks for reading this, and pray that I get more chances to help others, because that’s what I really want.

Lord, be with Erik’s friends and family who are mourning this loss.  Comfort them with the joy of having known your servant that understood what really matters.  Help them to be strengthened by his words and guided to live more courageously because of having known Erik.    Lord, in your mercy…….Amen


A new decade.    What joy a new year and a new decade bring.   “Behold!   I make all things new!”

I have read so much from others about how they hope 2010 is much better than 2009.    Everyone wants better finances or better luck or better health.    With a brand new year, it’s easy to get caught up in the hype and hope that the past will be washed away and the slate will be clean.

I was beginning to wonder if I had already ruined my new start.    While the new year started quietly, I quickly got caught up in the back to schedule rush.   Kids went back to school after break only to get ready for mid terms exams.   Crazy.    Our daily schedule was starting to fill up with a meeting here and pick up early there.    Then the snow and ice came in and we were suddenly sent home to hunker down.     With freezing temps, we had a little snow and a lot of ice.   When I took the dog out for a walk, I slipped in the ice.   I was stunned, but fine.   My thumb nail broke my fall, and I only bruised my left elbow/forearm.    I got back up and continued my walk in the grass, off the icy road.     On the way back, I had to cross over a driveway and knew that the area was icy so I tried to walk careful.   Careful or not, I slipped again and this time bruised my right elbow/forearm.  Ouch.   I’m beginning not to like icy weather.     As if this contact with ice were not enough, I decided to run errands on Saturday, and learned that the ice was still bad in our subdivision and in fact, one solid sheet of ice would send me spinning and crashing into a brick mailbox.    Again, I was fine, but my car, not so much.     Insurance will cover the mailbox and car, except for $1000 deductible.       I’m fine physically, just mad at myself for letting it happen.

So far 2010 has been pretty crappy.    Have I blown the year and the century already?  Maybe I’ve gotten all my bad luck out of the way.   Well I don’t beleive in mystical karma.  I beleive that sometimes life gives you lemons.   I’m still incredibly blessed.  I’m lucky to have a house to stay warm in, a dog to walk, and a car to drive.    I have more comforts than many people in the world will ever know.    Will I count my blessings, or wallow in pity.

Today someone sent me a great e-mail that really helped give me perspective.

Top Ten Predictions For 2010

1.  The Bible will still have all the answers you need.
2. Prayer will still work.
3. The Holy Spirit will still move.
4. God will still inhabit the praises of His people.
5. There will still be God-anointed preaching.
6. There will still be singing of praise to God.
7. God will still pour out blessings upon His people.
8. There will still be room at the Cross.
9. Jesus will still love you.
10. Jesus will still save the lost.

God whispers in your soul and speaks to your mind.
Sometimes when you don’t have time to listen,
He has to throw a brick at you.
It’s your choice:
Listen to the whisper, or wait for the brick.

Thanks, God.   I got the brick and the point is not lost on me.    I love you too!

Work in progress

I get overwhelmed at all the things I want to change about myself.   I need to:

exercise more and eat less

save more and spend less

pray more and worry less

I want to build my own small home from recycled material and grow my own garden.    Seriously.    And I don’t have an ounce of carpentry skills or a green thumb.    How in the world can I even consider this cock-eyed dream a possibility?   Is it just some way to occupy my feeble brain with dreaming, but never accomplishing?  

I don’t think so.    I’m in the early stages of gathering ideas, making plans, and researching.   My motivation is to get started before I get to old and decrepid. 

And in all of my mess, may God be glorified.

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