And to those visiting, I say welcome! Susie Larson here...
I post every Wednesday and my sole purpose is to nourish your soul along the way. Each month I give away a $10.00 Starbucks gift card to someone who posts on my blog. So share an insight, bless lots of people, and just maybe you'll win a jolt of java for you and a friend. And, I LOVE it when you encourage each other on this blog! So please feel free to post a word of encouragement when you feel so inspired.
Now on to my topic:
I've been praying about what to share with you today and the thing that's most on my heart is the whole idea of presence.
As I walk through the grieving process, I find myself remembering certain things about my dad I never realized I'd treasure so much. I remember sitting on the couch, working on my homework and having my dad walk into the living room, put on an Elvis Presley or Andy Williams album. He'd take me by the hand and stand me up so I could dance with him. We'd sway back and forth and he'd twirl me a time or two. We'd giggle, then minutes later, I'd sit back down to do my homework.
The reason scripture says that it's better to go to a house of mourning than a house where there's a party is because losing a loved one causes you remember what's important: people and God. When you go to a party, the mentality is "consume now, pay later."
It's a gift to remember how brief life is. It's a precious treasure to remember that life is a gift, and that the more we love, the less we'll have to regret.
What can we give others so they will know God's love? We give them our attentive presence. We look them in the eyes. We love them right where they live. And we point them to the Truth of God's love. We refuse the curse of a hurried, skim-the-surface kind of life. And we determine to send our roots down into the soil of God's marvelous love, so we'll have plenty to give to those we meet along the way.
May we determine to be present with those God puts in our presence. May we be so in tune with the Father's love that they can easily grasp how wonderfully He loves them.
And may we ourselves, camp long in God's presence; long enough to remember that He adores us with an ever lasting love. He offers us the riches of His love and every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realm (See Ephesians 1). He invites us into His presence that He may impart more of Himself to us.
We have access to God's powerful presence because of Christ's victory on the cross. We can walk in His presence as we live here on earth (See Psalm 116:9). He is an ever present help in times of trouble; fully engaged with us every step of the way. He laughs when we're funny, and aches for us when we believe a lie. He always has our best interest at heart and He makes a way when there seems to be no way.
Scripture says in Psalm 16:11 ~ In Your presence the FULLNESS OF JOY is found. Think about that for a moment: in the Lord's presence, we find spilling over joy, an abundance of peace, and everything good.
We tend to make everything a task, but it doesn't have to be that way. The sacred moments are those that compel us to celebrate life, to embrace God's greatness, and to be in awe of His goodness. God's great gift to us is His attentive presence. He breathes life into our weary soul that we may live full and powerful lives.
May we be as present with those we love.
On the day of my dad's burial service, my boys, my daughter in law, my husband, and I scurried around the house to get ready for the service. We pressed our clothes, the guys straightened their ties, the mood felt somber. Suddenly, my oldest son Jake flipped open his laptop and played a bebop 'dance with me' song by a British girl band. The fun upbeat song instantly changed our mood. In a matter of seconds, we were dancing around the kitchen, clapping to the beat, and celebrating life. God gave me that wonderful moment with my sons and hubby, right in the middle of a painful day, and I'll always cherish it.
Maybe you celebrate life in a different way. No matter; may your sacred moments not escape your notice. May they not get away from you before you've had a chance to embrace them, enjoy them, and thank God for them.
May we all live constantly aware of God's presence in our midst. May we give others (especially our husbands and children) the gift our presence. And may we splash in pools of blessing right in the midst of our very important and busy days.
Sieze those sacred moments because those are the ones you'll remember.
~Until next week.