Tuesday, February 9, 2010

overcoming spirit

dear emily,

when your children come home from school and have been
bullied or teased by cruel children, it is often helpful to tell
them stories about inspiring people who have overcome
adversity, too.

here's a story about a hero of mine.  isaac watts (1674-1748)
wrote many of the hymns we sing today.  my favorites are
'o God, our help in ages past,' and 'when i survey the
wondrous cross.' i know every word.

what i didn't know is that he was only five feet tall with
a giant head and a great big nose.  sadly, the woman he
loved wouldn't marry him, because he was so ugly.  if that
weren't bad enough, his health was severely weakened by
a devastating case of smallpox.

though his happiness was threatened by his appearance,
his rejection, and his health, he must have still been filled
with an unfathomable joy.

after all, he wrote, 'joy to the world the Lord is come!'


lend yourself

dear emily,

my dear worship pastor, joseph, sends us a daily devotion,
and today's struck a chord in my heart.  i have always loved
king david for saying, "i am not going to sacrifice anything
that costs me nothing!"

i thought i would share with you something that costs me
dearly. occasionally, i am asked to sing at church services,
weddings, and funerals, which is a sweet honor.  the rub,
though, is that i am introverted, self conscious, and fearful.

i have never envied another's talent, but i can assure you
that i have turned green watching a singer just have the
time of her life expressing her gift.  what would that be
like to sing your heart out and enjoy every minute?  i
don't know.

the scripture joseph shared this morning is psalm 112:5,
"a good man deals graciously and lends..." it reminded
me that as long as i lend my talent graciously, though
it is costing me dearly, the Lord will use it.  that's all
that matters.