Sunday, October 21, 2012

this is for You, part two.

This blog is going to be the end of me. Sincere feelings, what can I say? Before you begin, know that this is one blog that I have worked on night after night; it has brought me to my knees-- and then to my face before God asking Him for something. Anything. I'm afraid of two things: The first being what Ann Voskamp describes like this, ''when you write, you are before a holy God, describing the things of the LORD-- that is what scares me." The second tying perfectly with the first, I don't want to cheapen a thing or make a mistake.  Continuing on with much prayer, a heavy burden, and heavy eyes...

After playing with the Pastor's youngest offspring for several minutes + waving at the good-bye window, I walked over to the table, grab the Greek NT where it had been placed, make my way to the ever-so-comfortable couches, and open the pages for the second time.

Grant had told me the story of this New Testament. His Pastor gave it to him when he began learning Greek in 2001, and for some reason that I'm not sure of, he passed it onto me. :)

Grant and Suzanne; not my photo.


As Makenna was quietly playing across the room, I curled into their loveseat opening the NT. Then, I saw something at the beginning. Aw, he left the note from his pastor in there, I thought. I read it... feeling as if I was intruding on a sweet conversation. As I was reading it, though, I see more ink. What is that? I turn the page. The first lines having the date: "October 14, 2012... Then: Emilee, ..." in Grant's handwriting. Aw, I'm part of the story. This is what brought the tears to surface.

We read about Jesus' encounters with the crowds, His family, His Father, and His disciples... peering, sometimes it seems to be intruding, on their divine conversations. We close the pages and through the Holy Spirit He whispers, ''Beloved, you are part of the story.''

Thursday, October 18, 2012

this is for you, part 1.

It was a Sunday. Last Sunday, actually.

We were in the next state over for my niece's second birthday. I woke up in my big brother's home in Missouri, traveled home in the mornin', accomplished some to-dos, Bible Quiz practice, and then... my evening with Makenna.

I hadn't watched Makenna on her own before. So, it was definately a quiet time of babysitting in comparison to our norm. But, after all, we would be lying if we said that we didn't miss these two:


Aren't they the sweetest? :)

I received the usual instructions that the parents give minutes before they walk out the door.
I tried to absorb everything the eldest two kiddos were saying 100 miles a minute and discover Makenna- now MOBILE- crawling like it's nobody's business and greet her, too.

As I turn around, Grant {He is not a stranger here. If you have been reading Peculiar Treasures for any length of time you know the name. :)} extends his hand with a maroon, thick + small, Greek New Testament with the words, ''This is for you.'' I bow my head, turning the pages, ignorant to all the adventures to come over those pieces of paper--even in minutes to come-- and say thank-you.

It was a Sunday. 3 years ago today, actually.

I went to Sunday school knowing that this was my last 24 hour period in good ol' Mississippi. It has been my last until this day 3 years later, unforunately. My last Sunday school class with the teacher that taught more than could be in any curriculum. She invested her life into me, she did. Nights spent sipping lemonade watching The Andy Griffith Show in her master bedroom, craft days full of paints + ideas, and lessons full of Paul's journey's and how to be a fisher[wo]man. Also, to be noted: Mrs. Khristi introduced me to coffee. Oh, yes. Enough said. Mrs. Khristi taught me Sunday school in that church of less than 70 in attendance... and sometimes-- only me.

We were going to be moving to Iowa the next day, on my Mom's birthday. While being excited for this new journey {That's for another blog, another day!} I was saddened while experiencing those precious last's. As class came to an end and whatever kids came that morning scattered she approaches me with a maroon, thick + large, study Bible with the words, ''This is for you.'' I open that book, while Mrs. Khristi points to her personal letter in the front, and say, ''Thank-you.''

It was 6 years ago this November 3rd. I was in that designated school room in that tiny town I lived in while in southeastern Iowa, hovered over that devotional book before a single equation was completed, that invited you into God's family. Meanwhile, through my Mama's words, teacher to one student, ''Do you want to become one of God's children today?'' The Holy Spirit gave me an ah-ha moment. I had heard it, I had wanted it, but I was finally ready to receive it. Jesus extended His arms with the words, ''This is for you.'' Much like the Holy Ghost goosebumps all over me now, I stepped over to our couch, also in the primary colored school room, and prayed. I cried, and cried, and cried. Although my hands were folded they were really extended acknowledging that deep red {can somebody dare to say maroon?} blood spilled out for me. Accepting humbly that Christ fought for me-- and that if I were the only one to accept, He would have still done it. Bowing my head, saying thank-you not knowing the weight of what I was doing, beginning my crazy joyful adventure with Abba.

You see, I may not remember what Grant said to me after the initial give 10 years from now, I don't remember everything Mrs. Khristi said, and surely I don't remember my entire prayer for salvation. We never forget the words or the action that screams this is for you, though.

All of these gifts, however small they ARE in comparison to Christ's gift, speak life over a girl with words of encouragment right up there first in line on that love language list... and I'm almost positive you know the second: Gifts.

What is there to do, but to bow our heads and say thank-You?

Christ's gift for me of forgiveness, acceptance, and countless promises.

These 3 teachers giving the gift of their lives, at times materialistic things, and the gift of
their friendship. Even if for one, because they have an audience of One.

I got treasure up in heaven; I got dirt all over me,

P.S. Part two is minutes away. If you are left wondering-- there is a reason why! :)

Sunday, October 14, 2012

we win in the end.

Written on Thursday, October 11, 2012.

I don't know how you stumbled upon this post. You may have clicked this link via my Facebook account. Through a comment on a blog I follow. Maybe you check in regularly and this is the first title your eyes stumbled upon. No matter how you got here, I have asked God BIG for this post. He may not use it BIG for 10 years, but let's believe Him that He will. Also, if you don't want to be friends with bluntness on the other side of that screen-- I advise you to leave. Or stay out of curiousity. I think that's why I'm still here.

My mind will not shut off. My mind is the book that you do not want to read. My mind is a writer's mind {or maybe it's just me ;)} and I have book beginnnings, e-mails to be sent, thank-you cards to be written, and blog endings CONSTANTLY STREAMING THROUGH MY MIND. It is a blessing apparently, but it can be a curse. It has all of these beginnings, but I have to jump up on an olympic trampoline to attempt sealing them. I do have days, though, when I don't have to search-- days when all I have to is find a keyboard or journal. God impresses these beginning thoughts on days like today so that I cannot stand it anymore. He impresses so much on this mind of mine that I have to press with my fingers. I type it until I am blue in the face, 2AM comes, He simply tells me it is finished, or tears are falling down my face. Whichever comes first. So, I am asking Him to come and seal all of these beginnings at what may seem like the end of me.

My Grandpa has cancer. We don't know what stage he is in yet. We have so much to think about, pray about, work out. We have nothing to worry about. God tells us not to worry. So, when I can't sleep at night, I tell Him. I may not know what or how to tell Him, but I do. I meet with You and my soul sings out//As Your word throws doubt far away//I sing to You and my hearth cries holy.

We potentially may have something to grieve, but in the process we shall not grieve the Holy Spirit. Crazy joy is possible. I love my Grandpa Kerwin. I don't want him to be sick, I don't want him to lose weight, and I want him to stay around until his life seems to be in the appropriate place to end. I want him to give us a hard time and a good time for years to come. I want him-- with us. That is in the hands of HIM, the great I AM. He IS. The LORD is here. He is the One, the Only, my Everything.
Hallelujah, Father You're near