Today is Wednesday, the eighth of September.
Peace be with you
Fourteen days until the end of summer. What is interesting is that I am hearing people on some podcasts say that it’s already Fall. This an interesting trend, I guess, that simplifies the seasons down to full months. In other words, they consider fall beginning at the beginning of September. These are probably people who also believe that the new millennium began in the year 2000. But Autumn begins on September 22.
It is pouring down rain, outside. A virtual deluge. Ironically, I watered the front lawn for about an hour, earlier. I checked the forecast. There is a 21% chance of precipitation today.
There are also some pretty big thunder-boomers happening, and one of them knocked out the Internet for a bit, but it seems to be back.
C continues to improve, I think. The incision does seem to be seeping, just a bit, though, and we aren’t sure how concerned we should be about that.
My work/training at the library continues to go well, too. Yesterday, spent the first half learning the nuances of the “Youth” department. It’s a bit of a paradigm shift for me, as what Hurst considers “Youth,” I have always considered “children.” Basically, 0-12. 13-19 is considered “Young Adult” (also designated as “Teen Zone,” and they have their own room in the library, which I think is cool). Then I spent the rest of the day in the computer center, where I have made a couple of new friends. Today, I work 1:00-5:00, and will likely be shelving the whole time. After this afternoon, I won’t work again until next Monday.
It’s a tough choice on the “holiday” front, today, as it happens to be Star Trek Day. However, it is also Literacy Day, which is a much more important and concerning topic than Star Trek. I don’t know about the reliability of this information, but it seems to be corroborated across several sources. Americans read a “mean average” of only twelve books per year. But the median American has only read four to five books in the past twelve months. That that means is that half of Americans read more than four books in the last year, and half read fewer. This is alarming, but not surprising. So pick up a book and read today. Of course, this blog is probably “preaching to the choir,” because if you’re reading a blog, odds are, you probably read books, too.
The word for today is cathartic, an adjective meaning, “of or relating to the purging of the emotions or relieving of emotional tensions, especially through certain kinds of art, as tragedy or music.” Or maybe reading, perhaps? I find the reading of a good book to be quite cathartic.
The quote for today is from Arthur Schopenhauer, a German philosopher. “I’ve never known any trouble than an hour’s reading didn’t assuage.”
Significant birthdays on September 8:
Richard the Lionheart, king of England, 1157-1199 Antonin Dvorak, Czech composer (New World Symphony), 1841-1904
Nico Donkersloot, Dutch writer, 1902-1965. Never heard of him, I just like the name. Frank Cady, actor (Sam Drucker), 1915-2012
Sid Caesar, comedian, 1922 (91) Peter Sellers, English actor/comedian (The Pink Panther), 1925-1980
Patsy Cline, country singer (Crazy), 1932-1963
Guitar Shorty, blues guitar player, 1939 (82)
Bernie Sanders, politician, 1941 (80) Aimee Mann, singer/songwriter (Till Tuesday), 1960 (61)
Peter Furler, Australian musician (Newsboys), 1966 (55)
There are others, including Pink, born in 1979, but think it fitting to leave this portion with "All God's children singing 'Glory, glory!'"
TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL AND PRAYERS
This new day You give to me From Your great eternity This new day now enfold Me in Your loving hold You are the star of the morn You are the day newly born You are the light of our night You are the Savior by Your might God be in me this day God ever with me stay God be in the night Keep us by Thy light God be in my heart God abide, never depart. (David Adam)
And there was a prophetess, Anna, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was advanced in years, having lived with her husband seven years from when she was a virgin, and then as a widow until she was eighty-four. She did not depart from the temple, worshiping with fasting and prayer night and day. And coming up at that very hour she began to give thanks to God and to speak of him to all who were waiting for the redemption of Jerusalem.
(Luke 2:36-38 ESV)
Today I am grateful:
1. that C continues to improve and is getting around marvelously, post-surgery 2. that You have opened my lips to speak and sing Your praises 3. that I am alive and breathing 4. that You are able 5. for hope
Scriptures and Prayers from Seeking God’s Face: Praying with the Bible through the Year
ORDINARY TIME – WEEK SIXTEEN – DAY FOUR
GOD is good, a hiding place in tough times. He recognizes and welcomes anyone looking for help,
(Nahum 1:7 MSG)
I pause during this quiet moment to simply reflect on God’s hand in everything that has happened in our lives in the past month. It is a picture of divine grace.
For the director of music. To the tune of “Lilies.” Of David.
Save me, O God, for the waters have come up to my neck. I sink in the miry depths, where there is no foothold. I have come into the deep waters; the floods engulf me. I am worn out calling for help; my throat is parched. My eyes fail, looking for my God.
Answer me, LORD, out of the goodness of your love; in your great mercy turn to me. Do not hide your face from your servant; answer me quickly, for I am in trouble. Come near and rescue me; deliver me because of my foes.
(Psalms 69:1-3, 16-18 NIV)
When you have entered the land the LORD your God is giving you as an inheritance and have taken possession of it and settled in it, take some of the firstfruits of all that you produce from the soil of the land the LORD your God is giving you and put them in a basket. Then go to the place the LORD your God will choose as a dwelling for his Name and say to the priest in office at the time, “I declare today to the LORD your God that I have come to the land the LORD swore to our ancestors to give us.” The priest shall take the basket from your hands and set it down in front of the altar of the LORD your God. Then you shall declare before the LORD your God: “My father was a wandering Aramean, and he went down into Egypt with a few people and lived there and became a great nation, powerful and numerous. But the Egyptians mistreated us and made us suffer, subjecting us to harsh labor. Then we cried out to the LORD, the God of our ancestors, and the LORD heard our voice and saw our misery, toil and oppression. So the LORD brought us out of Egypt with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm, with great terror and with signs and wonders. He brought us to this place and gave us this land, a land flowing with milk and honey; and now I bring the firstfruits of the soil that you, LORD, have given me.” Place the basket before the LORD your God and bow down before him.
(Deuteronomy 26:1-10 NIV)
DWELLING: SILENCE AND MEDITATION
As I continue to be aware of God’s presence in this place, I meditate on these passages, asking the Holy Spirit to direct me deeper into His presence.
Who among has not felt like David, in the first three verses of Psalm 69? We feel like the flood-waters have risen up to our necks. In fact, it is common to say that we were “up to our necks” in whatever trouble we find ourselves in.
We are sinking, we can get no foothold. We become worn out, crying for help. Not only can we not see God, we can’t see anything else, either. We feel as though we are totally engulfed in darkness.
As long as we continue to call out to God, we will survive. Eventually, the waters will recede. God will answer, out of the goodness of His love (as well as for His own Name’s sake). He will not hide His face from us. He will rescue us and deliver us from our “foes.”
What are our foes? They might be any number of things. Financial troubles, health issues, worry, despair, temptations and sin, doubt. For any given person, they can be different at any given moment.
I remain fully persuaded that our God is able to deliver us from all of our troubles.
He is able to deliver thee, He is able to deliver thee; Though by sin oppressed, go to Him for rest; “Our God is able to deliver thee.”
Here’s another, more recent song, of which I am quite fond.
He is able more than able To accomplish what concerns me today He is able more than able To handle anything that comes my way He is able more than able To do much more than I could ever dream He is able more than able To make me what He wants me to be
Just remember the Israelites, stuck in Egypt. In our passage from Deuteronomy, verses 6-7, we seen Israel crying out to the Lord over their mistreatment by the Egyptians. The Lord delivered them “with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm.” He is able.
Father, I praise You that, no matter what concerns me today, or what circumstances come my way, You are able. I don’t even need to put anything after “able” in that sentence, because, whatever it is, You are able. I praise You for Your obvious hand in all that has occurred in our lives since the end of July. I give You praise that the school bus driving job didn’t turn out. Things are much better, the way they are, and You orchestrated this, I am fully persuaded! So all praise and glory to You. Keep that in my mind, whenever things look troublesome, or aren’t working out the way we think they should. Help us remember that, while we can’t see the end of things, You can, because You are already there.
"Giver of every good gift, offering You the firstfruits of what I make and produce is a good spiritual discipline that helps my heart wriggle free from the grip of my possessions and rest content. Keep me in that freedom, a radically generous life that joyfully furthers the good of Your kingdom. In the name of Jesus, amen."
“Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.”
(Matthew 11:29-30 MSG)
May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.
(Romans 15:13 NIV)
Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we boast in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.
(Romans 5:1-5 NIV)
But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently.
(Romans 8:25 NIV)
I pray for peace in our nation, peace in our world. I pray for racial injustice to end, and I pray for the pandemic to be over. Above all else, though, I pray for Your will to be done, on earth as it is in heaven. For Yours is the kingdom, the power, and the glory, for ever and ever. Amen.
Even so, come, Lord Jesus!
Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand.
(Isaiah 41:10 NLT)
Grace and peace, friends.