A Cutting Away


medical usually surgical removal of lacerated, devitalized or contaminated tissue

Today is a Snow Day for most of us in the United States. Temperatures range from 24 degrees F in San Antonio, TX to a balmy 50 degrees F in New York City, NY. Many are without power or experiencing rolling black outs. Pray for those without heat and in some places, water.

I am thankful to be warm. I have been wanting to write on the above title for about nine months. The timing just didn’t seem right. Well, today is the day. Here goes…

Last May, I experienced chronic back ache, pain and irritation for a few weeks. I was packing for an imminent move. The country was pretty much shut down due to coming to terms with how best to manage and mitigate the novel COVID-19 virus: SARS-CoV-2. While I had help from two people on two different days, I pretty much packed myself. It was safer for all concerned to do so.

Meanwhile, my back began aching. Chiropractic adjustments kept me moving through the packing process. Finally, the pain was overwhelming. I thought I had really wrenched my lower back. It was as hard as a rock to the touch. An emergent care facility agreed with my assessment. There I received a prescription for a muscle relaxer. Only those pesky muscles didn’t relax.

Finally, out of desperation, pain is a great motivator, I went to my primary care practioner. Initially, I was treated for a severe itchy rash and low back ache. A week later, I was back at the PCP’s office. This time, there was a Nurse Practioner shadowing him. She noted the red rash had whelps and was oozy. She noted the rash didn’t cross the mid-line of the body. I continued to express how painful, itchy and tender to the touch the affected area was. Her diagnosis? Shingles.

If you have ever had them, if feel your pain. If you have not, run don’t walk, to get the vaccine.

I began experiencing dramatic improvement when I was provided with the correct diagnosis and medication. Then, all progress toward healing stopped. Back to the PCP. More medication. Nothing.

Finally, it was determined there was a dead layer of skin over the wound which needed to be removed. The removal of this dead skin would allow for the healthy skin to breathe and therefore, heal. With eyes bulging, I asked if I would be put to sleep during this in-office procedure involving a sharp single blade object attached to a long handle being applied to my wound. No. Numbing spray would be applied. Half joking, I asked if anyone had a hammer I might use to for anesthesia purposes. Sometimes the medical community just doesn’t have a sense of humor. With that little procedure over, the healing process began again…and…halted…again.

Another in-office debridement did the trick. I continued applying Medihoney to the wound. It creates a sticky mess but works wonders.

Question: What are we carrying around that is no longer of use to us? What might be impeding the healing of the healthy tissue lying just below the surface of that is which no longer serving any purpose?

Be encouraged to seek out a friend, trusted advisor or counselor and do the work necessary to remove that which is decaying and therefore, hindering the flourishing of a vibrant and healthy life. Healing is a process and takes time. It is so worth it. You are so worth it!


Rose Colored Glasses


Glasses perform several functions. They are often fashion statements. They can accentuate the shape of your face and eye color in flattering ways.  A pair of great spectacles can make an outfit as well as any pair of fabulous shoes.

Glasses are essential in eye health if one’s vision is compromised from being myopic (nearsighted), hyperopic (farsighted). I can see up close and read fine without a pair. However, you would not want to drive with me. I cannot see 20 feet in front of me. (Some would say closer than that.) At night, if I am not wearing my glasses or wearing an old pair because I cannot find my new ones, five or six on coming cars might look like a singular blob of light. Yep, you definitely do not want me to drive without my wearing the newest pair of glasses.

“Rose colored glasses” is a phrase that has been running around in my head for about  six weeks. If you are wondering if I have been procrastinating writing about them, the answer is a resounding, “Yes!”.

I do not know if you have noticed but, there has been copious amounts of commentary on the novel Corona virus, race relations in our country, rioting and looting in our cities, etc. What could I add to the mountains upon mountains of  monologues, essays, dissertations and opined opinions?  Not much.

However, the phrase keeps popping up. There is even a band by that name on Facebook. Unless, my smartphone has become a mind reader, I don’t know how the pink-hued lens group found me on FB. I have not spoken about these glasses nor have I googled the idiom. Then, it happened. The “sign” I could not ignore. A friend unknowingly referred to these glasses in a post this week. It was the tipping point.

You might be thinking my response was, “Yay!” It was not. I was out of excuses and still no clue what to write other than those three words.

Here goes:

Rose colored glasses offer a cherry view of the world. In the climate of the day and time in which we live this might not be all bad. A fresh and light perspective might be good medicine for the ills our country is experiencing but, not to the point of living in total denial.

Glasses afford us the ability to see more clearly and accurately. As I mentioned earlier, a new pair of glasses informed me the blob of light coming toward me at night was not one car but rather five. That was important information approaching me at about 65-70 miles per hour.

Perhaps, as in a suggestion, we might, as in a suggestion, consider how we are viewing the time in history in which we are living. This season is one for the record books.

Some, if I may be so bold to suggest, might want to lighten the tint on the lens of their glasses to gain sharpness of vision and insight. Others, if I may be so bold to suggest, might want a deeper  shade of pink. Again, to see in a fresher and keener way.

Who knows, we just might begin seeing things from each other’s perspective in a more transparent and comprehending way. A new line of sight may reveal an overlooked path. One which may allow us to see something we have not notice before: we are more a like than we are different. We could discover we  want similar things for our families, loved ones, communities, regions and dare I say, country. We might even find a common meeting ground of sorts with our new-found sight.

I find it amazing just how clearer my sight is when the necessary adjustments have been made to my lenses.  I always wonder why I waited so long to make the necessary changes in my vision. It does take a minute for an eye exam, for the ordered eyeglass to arrive and the fitting to ensure I can see.

I find it worth the time. How about you?








An Island in Time

I once heard a Rabbi describe Shabbat as a island in time. This day of rest for an observant Jew begins at sundown Friday and ends at sundown on Saturday. It is unlike any other day of the week. The hustle and bustle of a hectic work week slows to a leisurely stroll. Studies have shown machinery and even people work better when allowed to rest. 

At sundown Friday the very atmosphere changes in an observant Jewish community. Families have closed doors to the outside world.  Candles are lit in the home. The first of three family meals is served. It is likely it will not be take out.  A prayer is prayed. Children are blessed. It is a celebratory time where family and friends gather to focus on each other and reflect on their faith. Friends and neighbors taking a Shabbat walk greet each other with, “Shabbat Shalom”.  On its surface is a greeting of rest and peace.  What a wonderful salutation. 

I have been ruminating over these two words in light of the days of this novel corona virus.

Shabbat: a 24 hour period of rest which allows activities necessary for love and family only. Shabbat means he rested.  Shalom completes this Sabbath greeting. Shalom: a cursory glance of the word indicates it means “peace” and it does. But, it so much more.  When one extends the greeting, “Shabbat Shalom”, they are offering you rest rarely known this side of heaven. The rest which being in God’s presence can only bring. They are wishing you a peace that brings wholeness of spirit, soul(mind, will and emotions) and body.  This level of peace and wholeness provides the boundaries for our island in time. It is in the peace Shalom brings we find safety and the resources needed so we may rest and turn our focus inward to ourselves, our families, friends and faith.  

Perhaps, this is the blessing in the unimaginable disguise of COVID 19. The unique opportunity to come away for the purpose of prayer, rest, reflection, rediscovery of who we are a individuals, a family, a friend, a community, a state, a region and a nation. 

In the unprecedented events COVID 19 has brought upon us:

May you find peace and rest beyond your comprehension. May you find provision for your every need as you shelter in place. May you come through the other side of this global pandemic truly rested and truly whole in spirit, soul and body.

Shabbat Shalom, y’all!


A Bow in the Sky

A good reminder.

A Place to Write


I didn’t want to go. I was following what I sensed was a gentle holy nudge. As I parked my car, I noticed a small crowd had gathered just outside the building I was dreading entering. They seemed to be delighting in something just over my shoulder. I turned. There it was. A beautiful view of 3/4 of a rainbow. A young friend informed me of its size. I immediately recalled His promise found in Genesis. Rainbows always remind me He is faithful to His promises. Seeing His bow in the sky never fails to be a serendipitous surprise.  He promised.  I gasped. I always do. I sensed He was up to something. But, what…

I entered the meeting skeptical. I have been to many of these types over the years and thought I knew what to expect. I even mentioned my years of experience to the pastor leading this…

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A Place to Write

Thoughts on Prayer: A Great Light—Part Two (A Christmas Eve Meditation)

(Excerpt from: Thoughts on Prayer:A Journey in the Land of Father’s Love)

Isaiah 9:2; Matthew 4:16″…The people walking in darkness have seen a great light…”

single candle

No one knows when Jesus was born. It could have been during the Jewish celebration of Sukkot. His birth during this time of year would have painted a lovely picture of our Savior tabernacling with us. Another possibility could have been in the Jewish month of Kielev. Hanukkah begins on the 25th of this month(Asher Intrater). According to Messianic Rabbi Asher Intrater’s post in Revive Israel: “The 25th word of Genesis in Hebrew is “Light”. If Yeshua were born on the 25th of December, then He would have been circumcised on January 1st(Luke 2:21). The 8th day of Hanukkah, when all the lights are lit, occurs during the new moon of Tenet, making it the darkest night…

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A Place to Write

Thoughts on Prayer: A Great Light—Part One
(Excerpt from Thoughts on Prayer : A Journey in the Land of Father’s Love )

A phrase from Isaiah 9:2 and Matthew 4:16 has been running around in my head all month: “The people walking in darkness have seen a great light…” I have been mulling and churning over this verse for weeks. It won’t let me be.:) The challenge has become how to narrow the focus. There is so much! And it’s all sooo good. God is good.

LIGHT… God created it first even before He created the sun and moon and stars. It separates. Much like the double edge sword of the Word/word of God.

LIGHT… It marks time and helps order our days. When God created the sun and moon we had day and night. He gave us 24 hour increments to steward that which He has given to our…

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I haven’t been here in ages.

A friend’s family member passed. The viewing was this weekend.  This cemetery in Nectar, AL was just down the road from the funeral home as the proverbial crow flies.  My daddy is buried there. I was 12 when he passed.

Daddy worked two jobs, ran for elected office on a national level and was involved in his church and community.  He was laying pipe while on his second job when the accident happened.  The second job was his fledgling construction company. He was laying pipe  in order to bring city water into our community. I can remember going with my mother,  siblings and a car load of kids she kept to collect water at the spring when water went out at the house.

Daddy was using a backhoe to dig the pipeline. He put the machine in neutral and stepped off. If he had turned the digger off it might not have happened. His pant leg caught the gear as he was descending the backhoe. This put the machine in gear and it rolled over him.

I didn’t get to say my goodbyes. Over the years, I have worked on my “daddy issues”, consequently. In my twenties, I wrote him a letter. It was most freeing and healing.

At his grave site there was no regret. No “if onlys” or ” might haves”, “should haves”, “could haves”, etc. There was peace.

I am not sure why I went. A few memories came to mind while standing there.  My Daddy was a handsome 6’3″ blue eyed man with dark hair. Seems like it was black. I was about six when my 5’5 ish  grandmother looked up at him and with a pointing index finger, informed him he was not too big for her to spank.  In the momentary silence which followed, I wondered what Daddy had done.  Then they laughed. Whew! Daddy was off the hook.

That was it…until this morning on the way to work. I was reflecting on my visit when a memory years after Daddy’s death came to mind.

My sons were maybe 5 and 2. Grandmother wanted to take us all shopping. Anxiety kicked in. Two active boys were about to go shopping with their great-grandmother who didn’t understand why they might find that boring and behave accordingly. Friends and family who knew of the impending excursion called to encourage me to go and try to have a good time.

New clothes put away and two exhausted boys down for a nap. I was pooped. The same family and friends called to inquire how “it” went. We all lived through “it”.

Later that evening, when the boys’ dad was home,  I was able to have a moment to myself and ask my heavenly Father just what that shopping trip was about. The answer came: You want a daddy. My reply: Again? Old thought patterns came flooding back.  I didn’t stay too long on those old trails. My heavenly Father interrupted. Quite unapologetically.  He simply said, “Call to me.” I was breathless. What if…  Again he entreated, “Call to me.” Deep breath. I called. Silent tears fell.

The boys’ dad was relaxing in the recliner in the den. I heard him get out of his comfortable position. I tensed. I knew if he came into the living room he would ask what was wrong. I would say nothing was wrong. He would wonder if it was something he’d done. I would say no and it would go downhill from there. Instead, he silently sat beside me and just held me. Through my sons’ father, Father God met me in my overwhelmed and exhausted state.

I will always need my Abba, Papa, Daddy, Father God.  How about you?




The genesis for this blog is birthed from a recent conversation with a friend whom I love, admire and respect. Aspects of our conversation centered around Matthew 6:5 and Matthew 18:20. Our conversations tend to get me thinking…



Prayer is life’s breath to the Christian. It connects us to Father God in the most personal and intimate of ways. The are several ways to pray,which is for another blog. We are instructed to do so without ceasing (1 Thessalonians 5:17).  Jesus and His spirit are our basis/means (Hebrews 7:25; John 16:13).

Prayer is life’s blood to the Christian. It has been said, “God does nothing but, in answer to prayer.” (John Weslely).  Jesus’ own instructions are not IF you pray but, WHEN (Matthew 6:5).

We are further instructed to pray in our prayer closets in Matthew 6:5. After my conversation with my friend, I liken  it unto the holy of holies where it’s just you and God. It is for and with an audience of one ultimately because of intimacy.

In Matthew 6, the religious leaders were abusing prayer and Jesus introduced the importance of being aware and valuing to whom you are praying. He introduces what we know as the Lord’s Prayer after this teaching. So, praying privately is vital to the life of a Christian. It is foundational. And  after my most recent friendly conversation, I would propose it is the first step before praying in a group. If we don’t know how to talk with God in a personal/intimate way, we just might not have any substance to draw upon when we pray in a group.  The power, the fuel, the training comes one-on-one with Father. And that takes T.I.M.E.

Group praying would be the other side of this coin and also important in the life of a Christian. I think of Niagara Falls. It is powerful. Even forceful. So it is when we pray with one or more in the name of Jesus in Spirit-led prayer.  All those water droplets form a stream. A stream forms a river(s) and forms Niagara Falls.

The power of corporate prayer, strengthened/undergirded by individual prayers, is magnified when we take a look at Heaven’s response. Worship is the 24/7 occupation in Heaven (Revelation 4). Except.

Just after the seventh seal is opened, heaven falls silent for about 30 minutes. At this time scripture tells us:

Then another angel with a golden incense burner came and stood at the altar.  And a great amount of incense was given to him to mix with the prayers of God’s people as an offering on the gold altar before the throne. The smoke of the incense, mixed with the prayers of God’s people, ascended up to God from the altar where the angel had poured them out. Then the angel filled the incense burner with fire from the altar and threw it down upon the earth; and thunder crashed, lightning flashed, and there was a terrible earthquake (Revelation 8:1-4)

Did you catch it? Worship is 24/7 in Heaven from eternity past to eternity present. It’s been going for a few eons at least.  But, when it’s time to pour a full bowl of prayers of the saints back onto heaven in answered prayer…heaven growns silent.

I have a suggestion. Start posting prayers on social media. But,first, search scripture for God’s heart on the matter. Then go into your personal prayer closest and craft a prayer based on the verses God places upon your heart and impresses upon your mind. Write out a prayer Then pray that prayer for several days; weeks even. Let it really marinate in your spirit, soul and body. Then gather a few folks and see how they are praying. Craft/Write that prayer and pray together for a while. Then, post that prayer on social media. Wait on God. Remain in prayer. See if John Wesley knew what he was talking about.  Could it really be this simple?







The meandering water cooler conversation took an interesting turn Monday. The typical discussion centers around weekend activities like sporting events, seeing family, resting, hobbies, on-going projects around the house, travel and so forth.

The weekend of one compadre` captured my attention. Her husband had gotten a hit on his ad offering a lawnmower for 100.00. It needed some tweaking to get it up and running again.  A gentleman from several counties over arrived Saturday to investigate. After kicking around deflated wheels and other parts, they shook hands and traded phone numbers. The new owner took his mower and left.

Her husband came in the house. He was not too forth coming on the details of the hours-long conversation or how he sealed the deal. So, as wives do, she pried. Imagine her surprise in discovering they lost money on the deal. He gave it to the man free of charge…

Once she fully understood what “free” meant, she asked a most logical question: “Why?”

The elderly gentleman’s son was a preacher. His son adopted a young boy. As  boys do; he grew. At some point, I can’t recall how, the adopted son killed his adoptive father. This man had chosen to take this child as his own. To rear this boy as his own. He signed papers. Paid money. Fed and clothed the child. Gave him a roof over his head.

The preacher’s father and boy’s grandfather now visits his grandson in prison…regularly.

The husband couldn’t charge the grandfather a penny after hearing that story.

Later in the afternoon, the grandfather called to ask his new friend a question. Seems he needed some wisdom. The grandfather asked the husband if he thought it would be okay with God if he missed church that Sunday. Visiting hours occurred during the worship hour on Sunday. He would be allowed 15 precious minutes with his grandson.  My workmate’s  husband assured his new confidant the Lord wouldn’t mind.

It was a divine appointment and got me thinking.

How like God is that grandfather. God had a Son. Though His Son willingly gave His life for mankind (John 3:16-17), it cost the life of His Son, nevertheless. Through that death He (God) was able to reach out to us in a way which had never been possible before. He was able to extend love, compassion and mercy to us at a level which had never existed. We haven’t earned it. We don’t deserve it. Neither does that grandson. But, by the giver’s freewill these graces are extended.

That grandfather’s faithfulness to demonstrate the love, compassion and mercy of God to his grandson painted a vivid picture of what God did through His Son, Jesus, for me.

One last thing. The grandfather had written a YouTube address where his new buddy could find sermons by his deceased son. The link took him to a sermon on “Aha Moments”. The text was Luke 15:11-32.




She’s about 40 weeks pregnant. She is as they say, “ripe with pregnancy.” It seems like a life-time ago when Gabriel made a surprise visit.

The angel seemed to appear out of nowhere. Mary was stunned. Gabriel informed her she was highly favored for she had been chosen to bear the Son of God. Mary is a practical and chaste woman. How? She’s a virgin after all. Gabriel continued, she will conceive by the Holy Spirit coming upon her by the power of God.

Mary is a smart girl. She is acutely  aware of the shame, the condemning looks and ostracizing by family and friend soon to come. What about her finance? She knows Joseph is an honorable man. He will have every right to end their engagement.  In his day, engagement was as binding as marriage.

This is what God calls highly favored? At least that would have been my thought.  Not Mary.  Mary acquiesces. She is the Lord’s servant. As for Joesph, he has a dream. An angel appears to him and gives him the same news Gabriel gave Mary. He is to marry her. Joseph acquiesces. He is an honorable man.

Before he departs, Gabriel lets Mary in on some news. Elizabeth is pregnant. Elizabeth? Barren Elizabeth is going to have a baby? At her age?  Mary dashes off to Elizabeth’s for a three month visit. Mary is there for her baby’s birth.

Mary returns home with a baby bump. At three months, her baby is fully formed. He has arms, legs, fingers, toes. He can open and close his mouth. Systems and organs are functioning.

Fast forward forty weeks. Her baby, of questionable conception, is due any minute. He has positioned himself head first in the birth canal. It is likely her legs are cramping. She’s not sleeping well. She is plain tired. She might be experiencing contractions.

It is precisely at this moment  in Mary’s pregnancy she and her finance are on a seventy  mile trek to his hometown to pay taxes. Joseph is likely walking.  Mary is riding on the back of a donkey. This is what highly favored by God looks like?

When the couple arrive in Bethlehem, they soon discover there’s no room in the inn. There’s no room any where. Mary’s womb has been expanding to make room for Jesus for nine months. Now, when it’s time to give birth, there’s no room? Surely, someone noticed the girth of Mary’s waistline. Surely, they knew she could deliver that baby any second. No one was making room for Jesus’ birth. What would you have done if you were Mary? Put yourself in Joseph’s shoes…

They find a manger…a cave.  They find a feeding trough. Mary, with Joseph by her side, goes through labor in that cave. The umbilical cord is cut in that cave. Jesus took his first human breath in that cave. Mary snuggly wrapped her son , the Son of God, in swaddling cloths and laid him in that feeding trough. There was no room for them in Bethlehem.

What about you? What about me? Are we making room for Jesus? This Christmas may our hearts be overcome with a deepening understanding of his limitless unbridled love for us.May we prepare him room out of the overflow of that love.