Sunday, May 29, 2016

Memorial Day ain't Happy

This Memorial Day I wanted to take a moment to reflect on the brave men and women who have given their lives in service to the United States.
I hesitate to say, “Happy Memorial Day” for the simple fact that labeling this day as ‘happy’ seems a little insensitive.  It is, after all, a day to commemorate those who lost their lives, and not, as some would think, a day to gorge ourselves on potato salad and burgers, or snag the latest deal down at the local mall.

Don’t get me wrong, I love a good burger as much as anyone else, and maybe it’s just me, but, the blatant commercializing of the day to honor our military dead seems a bit irreverent, and well, to put it plainly, disrespectful.

How many of us ever think of the real meaning behind Memorial Day? Do we know why it was created? Do our children know?

I’m not advocating that we all walk around in sackcloth and ashes, but I am saying that a part of our ‘celebration’ should be to take a moment to reflect and remember the dead, those men and women who willingly gave their lives so that we can enjoy the freedoms we have today.

In fact, in the year 2000, then President Bill Clinton passed a resolution called, the “National Moment of Remembrance”, which asks that at 3 p.m. local time all Americans do just that, pause for a full minute of remembrance and respect to honor our fallen military heroes.

So instead of wishing you a "H---y" Memorial Day, I leave you with this quote from President Truman...

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Is God still tasty?

Anyone who knows me knows that I love my dehydrator. I haven’t met a fruit or vegetable or applesauce yet that won’t find its way upon my trays. There’s nothing quite like those dried fruits and veggies that allow me to munch and snack without regret, and just the thought that they came as a result of my labor sends little trills of joy shooting through me!

Due to my love…er…obsession with this wonderful mechanical wonder my cupboard truly overflows with its tasty wares, which caused me a slight dilemma. I ran out of storage for the tasty treats I loved to make and over the last few weeks I have been munching and snacking my way through my containers, wistfully avoiding the produce aisles for lack of space.

But this weekend I found myself smack dab in the middle of the produce aisle, eagerly reaching for not just one pineapple but two, as well as a bag full of shiny granny smith apples. Throwing in a bunch of bananas and a couple of pints of strawberries caused my heart to sing and I could barely control myself with the thought that soon, very soon, I would be slicing and drying again! What joy!

So there I was late Monday night, loving the sound of the familiar thwack-thwack-thwack of the apple slicer, my heart at peace, when a scripture came to mind.

“Taste and see how good the LORD is! The one who takes refuge in him is truly happy!” Psalm 34:8

I am often amazed how awesome God is. He knows just the right words to make my heart sing, and these words were perfectly suited to minister to me at that time.

This scripture is an invitation from God to get to know Him, an opportunity to discover the ‘tasty’ side of Him. Living for God has been sweet, and a joy, and so full of goodness that I cannot get enough of Him. From sunrise to sunset and every moment in between I can only testify to how good He is to me, even when I am less than perfect.

You see, I have not been totally faithful to Him of late. I’ve let my personal devotions slide a bit. Due to…well… life, I’ve put Him up on the shelf and closed the lid. I can see him through the clear containers, I just haven’t been making room for Him in my life like I used to. But just as I needed to open up those containers and actually eat that sweet fruit, I need to open up God’s word and devour it. I need to get to know God all over again, to taste what He has to offer.

It’s so easy to just go through life, days sliding into months, without realizing that through my own neglect I am missing what I am most craving, a deep relationship with the God who saved me. It’s time to take down that container and open up the lid, to eat that sweet fruit and take refuge in the One who knows me better than myself.

And from now on, when I hear the thwack-thwack-thwack of the slicer, I pray that it be a reminder of just how tasty my God truly is.


Kathy W