Sunday, March 31

Between Heaven and Hell

Between Heaven and Hell, 1989 by Jacek Yerka

I know that they blame me. "It's all Eve's fault," they say. I listened to the serpent and ate the fruit. Wicked woman I am! They blame me and then they blame all my daughters- accusing them of weak-mindedness and the downfall of man. They've stuck my daughters in kitchens, disallowing them from viewing sunlight or beauty. They've struck them down for exerting freewill and have mocked our shared blessing of motherhood.

But what if I hadn't eaten that fruit? What if Adam had reached for the forbidden instead? Would God have forsaken us? Would he have not had compassion? Would he have stalled from sending his beloved son down as redeemer of that grave error- the error of allowing sin in and shutting Him out? No. His love for us is infinite and His mercy endures forever. And in that love and mercy God takes our sin and uses it for His glory.

So, I ate of that fruit, but what if you had eaten of it? You could have been me. I could have been you. And then where would you be to judge me? Do you really think you could have done any better? I made a mistake but by His grace I spent my time between Heaven and Hell learning of His goodness.

Written for

Easter Surprise

On this beautiful Easter morning I walked into church, arm in arm with my  husband expecting to participate in a morning of worship and praise. There is something special about going to church on resurrection Sunday and of course my heart was full of expectations: to see the children all dolled up in their precious Easter outfits, to hear the sounds of merry worshipers praising our King, to take in the commingled scent of old-lady perfume and grandfatherly aftershave.
About as soon as we walked in, the pastor called everyone to the front of the church so that we could begin with a corporal prayer. Eyes closed, hearts open, we thanked our Lord for his sacrifice on the cross so many years ago and prayed that we would hear His voice each and everyday. When the prayer was over, we returned to our seats, ready to worship.
Now, even as the prayer was being made, people flowed into the church and when we returned to our pew, the formerly empty row before us was filled. A group of about seven strangers had settled themselves in and when I looked at their faces I could see the mark of mental illness adorning most their faces. Their open mouths, glassy eyes, and slouched bodies betrayed them, no matter how clean and neat their caretaker had strived to make them look. Such as it was, I took my seat behind them and waited for the music to begin.
When the music started, so did the man in front of me. He began to clap and rock his entire upper torso to the beat of the music. He was so happy to be in the house of the Lord! Not wanting to be left behind in worship, I opened up my mouth began to sing along. When the man heard my voice, he whipped his head around and gave me one of the warmest smiles I have ever seen. It didn't matter if his teeth were crooked or that his eyes were simple. This man knew joy in a way that I'll never know.
My eyes swelled with tears as I meditated on the compassion Christs has for the "least of these" (Matthew 25:40) who are so often begrudged or forgotten by society. I smiled back each and every time the worshiper happened to look my way and thanked the lord for this beautiful Easter surprise.

Thursday, March 28

Mark of a Champion

My soul was dead
but I've been resurrected
with the blood of Christ
I've been resuscitated
and now that I'm living,
that my heart is pumping
I find myself poised over a line
'cause  I'm about to start the race,
the race called New Life

One step I place
after another
when the going gets tough
I feel the touch of the Holy Ghost
he won't let me fail
ye though I walk
through the valley of the shadow of death
and though I hear mocking and screaming
from either side of me
I'll keep going
because His strength is within me

You run right beside me
That time that I tripped
you lifted me
on my feet
and we kept on running
I've got the mark of a champion
the seal of the Holy Ghost
though this race is long
and my muscles get sore
I've got the mark of a champion
and this race was won
before it began

Wednesday, March 27


Materials for kite:
One big spool of yarny string
Plastic bags and sticks

A frightful scene

Vicious palms cut their fang-like fronds through the wind. Back and forth, back and forth, they sway, promising to slap any wayward soul who dares venture near them. Even the grass below trembles with fear. Overhead, a searing sun oversees the scene with enmity. Another mournful morning in Southwest Florida. 

Tuesday, March 26

10 lies homemakers tell themselves...

  • Nobody's really hungry, why cook?
  • There are plenty of left-overs in the fridge, why cook?
  • There's not enough clothes of any one color do a full load of laundry
  • Its too early in the morning to vacuum, the neighbors are probably sleeping
  • Its too late in the evening to vacuum, the neighbors are probably sleeping
  • There's still a little bit more room for garbage in that trash can
  • You can't really see the fingerprints on the glass table
  • The dirt on the floor makes the house look more natural
  • Its more economical to wash more than one dirty dish. I'll wait till the sink is full
  • The stores are probably crowded today, I should probably go shopping another day

Monday, March 25

You know you married a musician when...

  • The trunk of your car is perpetually filled with gig gear and sheet music
  • You are cautious about playing pop music for the fear of being judged
  • You take notes during concerts to provide feedback after the show
  • Back stages are like a second-home to you
  • When listening to live music at a restaurant, you are not allowed to simply enjoy it, but are instead graced with a real-time music review
  • You know all of the local musicians by name and have probably actually talked/hung out with them at one point of your life
  • You view instruments as financial investments
  • You have a music library second to none
  • Music catalogs and magazines flood your mailbox
  • You know the name of every music store in town and the next town overPortrait of a Musician