Marian P. Merritt - Lagniappe

Where the Bayous Meet the Mountains

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

. . . and the greatest of these is love.

Greater than faith, greater than hope, greater than the two other greatest things there are.
Sounds like someone placed a high value on love.

Rightly so, if we listen to popular comments or song lyrics.

Love can move mountains,
Love can stem the tide,
Love can conquer anything.

Most think of romantic love, which is fun, exciting, and puts a beat in your step, but the love that comes to mind—the love that can move mountains—is the steady, faithful kind. The kind of love that rejoices in life's grand things, but also in the little things.

Like the love of a husband who brings me coffee with a little too much creamer, because he knows how much I adore creamer. Or, who makes me leave the coziness of my couch at ten p.m. to lie on a blanket in our back yard and gaze at the stars.
The daughter, who tapes a drawing of a strutting, determined Donald Duck near my computer—the handwritten caption reads, “You can take on anything!”
The Son, who never ends a phone conversation without, “I love you, Mom.”
The friend who sends an email to say good morning and lets me know she’s praying for my writing.
The God who gave His only Son so I can live eternal life.

One of the prints on my desktop is of a sunset. The sky, a blend of orange, pink, and yellow. These words greet me each morning.

Doesn’t always roar.

Sometimes courage is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying. . .

“I will try again tomorrow.”

I say:

Love, doesn’t always roar.

Sometimes love is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying. . .

“I will be here tomorrow.”

Suggestions for today: Step out into your backyard or take a drive in the country to view the stars with your loved one.

Monday, February 06, 2006

For Such a Time as This

Those words spoken so many years ago to a woman called by God to save her people.

We, like Esther, are called “for such a time as this”. Now, more than ever, women of God are called to step up and obey His callings. He calls each of us to different tasks and holds each of us accountable.

So many times He’s called and I’ve ignored the calling or pretended I didn’t hear—so many missed blessings. Someone more obedient received those blessings. When we’re obedient to Christ’s calling, he showers us with blessings and anoints us so we can pass those blessings along to others. Thus the goodness spreads.

Stepping out in obedience is not easy. Especially if you’re not in relationship with Christ and trusting Him. Too often we rely on our own understanding and will. Too often, we’re hurt or disappointed when our plans go awry. Many times I decided what I would do, then asked God to bless my plans. I’ve learned the hard way, that’s not how things work.

The rewards for obedience are not always evident immediately, but sometimes we see the fruit of an obedient act instantly. What an awesome and humbling feeling when God uses us to bless others. It’s beyond words and brings us so much closer to Him.

Closer to Him—exactly where I want to be.

Is God calling you? Are you listening for His voice?

Suggestion for today: Phone or write a friend you haven’t spoken to in awhile.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

The Vultures come, but…

Seems like birds are my theme lately.
These birds however, are unwelcome. The vultures of doubt come to pick away at my armor. His armor.

“Who do you think you are?” One pecks at my confidence.

“You can’t write.” another pecks.

Still another pecks. “You can’t teach.”

Things, I know, God has called me to do.

Yet, I hear their voices.

In the past, I would have allowed the doubt to dissolve my confidence and retreated to the safety of my comfort zone.

Today, I stop to pray.

Now, things are different. Instead of walking on my confidence, I’m walking on God confidence and trusting in His promises.

He promised to honor my obedience. That’s enough to give me the strength to shoo away these vultures of doubt. I’m reminded that vultures do not prey on the living. If I keep God’s spirit alive in me and rely on His word for my confidence, then these predators have no power over me. They may come, but can’t accomplish their objective.

Maybe He's expanding my comfort zone...

Suggestion for today:
Examine your armor. Are there holes for the vultures of doubt to peck through?