Thursday, August 28, 2014

Slow: Nehemiah 9:1-37

Nehemiah 9:1-37

Verses 5b-15: so full of praise, glory, blessing and honor to God. Write your own paragraph of praise!

Verses 16-37: a history lesson on their ancestors legacy of discontentment. Amidst all of this, they still praise and acknowledge the truth of who God really is. And, we see again that He is slow to anger and lose patience with us.

Compare the Israelites behavior with God's response:

Israelites behavior
God’s response
vs. 16-17: disobeyed
refused to listen
failed to remember
wanted their own way
Slow to anger
Abounding in love
vs. 18-25: created an idol
“reveled” in His goodness
Provider: leading, guidance, instruction, food, water, physical help, kingdoms and nations, numerous sons – prosperity
Kept His Word and promises to them
Subdued their enemies
vs. 26-27a: disobedient
sin/rejection of God’s Law
killed God’s prophets
Handed them over to the hand of their enemies.
vs. 27b: cried out in their oppression.
Delivered them time after time
vs. 28a: evil
rejected God
Gave them to be ruled by their enemies.
vs. 29: arrogant
refuse to listen
rejected God
Gave a warning.
vs. 30-31: ignored
Urging to do what was right
Provided prophets
Handed them over to their neighbors
Sustained them

Have you experienced behavior like this in yourself or in your home?

Yesterday {written in the Spring} we maintained a family tradition to hold a little Spring party in our home. We like to dye eggs, do an egg hunt, read a couple of books and go through Resurrection Eggs on a day separate from Easter Sunday. At any rate, we had spent all morning in our fun activities and as lunch time approached, one of my children asked, "What's for lunch?" To which I responded, "Probably leftovers."

To this I received a very ungrateful response as if leftovers was not "fun" or "special" enough for our celebratory day. I was not exactly slow to anger or gracious in patience.

You've been here too right? It immediately takes the wind out of your sails and made me wish I had not been so generous in planning fun all morning for this child who responded in such a way. Isn't that just like the Israelites? And us?

I am so thankful God doesn't treat me as my behavior merits! Stop and thank God for how He has been slow to anger, generous, patient and faithful to you!

** Photos: An Emily-planned girls night complete with cozy, hot tea and Little Women!

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Slow Evening Beauty

At the end of our second week of school I was downright weary. I was craving beauty and with a borrowed beach park pass - we secretly planned a Family Night picnic. It was a huge hit and I literally felt physically better on our way home than I had on the way there - beauty. It just does this to me. I knew I needed it and I am so grateful for these moments to slow, rest, do nothing, be recharged.

I love how the sound of the ocean sort of muffles other sounds, it is commanding and that white noise is such a blessing and calming to the soul. We saw lightning, a very faint rainbow, birds and heard tons of squeals and giggles of delight from our three. It was a delight to the senses - and it filled me up. I am so grateful.

I bought the sunflowers at the grocery store and everything else came from shopping our own home/yard. The second part of the beauty comes when we get home - I always clean everything up right away and look forward to a peaceful spot to download my photos and relive it all again. I always look forward to this part!!!