A writer's blog of short stories, hopefully through them you will become aware of the gentle inner voice of God speaking through a rose or the simple activities of every day, such as playing with your grandchildren. His voice is everywhere. We just need to slow down and listen. When we do, He will heal our deepest hurts and set us on His path to becoming the person He created us to be.
Building Blocks and Stepping Stones (Day 1 from Cleansing Thoughts)
WHEN MY GRANDSON WAS THREE, every time he came over to spend the day with me, the first thing he wanted to do was get out the building blocks. "Grandma, build a house," he would say, and for the next several hours, we would build one house after another. Om the other hand, his little sister, almost two, had quite a time with the obstacle course created by the spilled blocks. I watched her very carefully trying to get through the maze of blocks, stumbling over even the smallest in her path. He would get mad, and the whole process would start all over again. It was only when he convinced his sister to sit down and help him build that the first house was completed. The three of us sat there for a very long time building houses until there were no more blocks to use. All around us were several little houses, but it was impossible to move without knocking them down! Then Grandpa came in, and the small city of blockhouses we had spent hours building came tumbling down.
When the house was quiet again, after the grandkids had gone home and everyone was sleeping, I would stand there looking around the empty room. The laughter that had filled this place just hours before now only filled my heart. All the blocks had been picked up, or at least I thought so until I stepped on one as I walked through the darkened room, OUCH will I ever learn to double-check that I found them all! As I sat in my chair I would start run the day events through my mind and suddenly start to laugh as I remembered how quickly our building project had been sacrificed when Grandpa came home. I thought of my little granddaughter stumbling through the maze of blocks; to her, they were an obstacle, but to her brother, they were of great value and brought hours of pleasure. A smile would come to my face as I remembered watching him convincing her to work with him until their goals became as one, then suddenly, the stumbling stones became building blocks for her as well.
Some of the simplest lessons in life can be learned from observing the everyday things that happen around us. This evening, as I thought of the grandchildren and the blocks, I was reminded that the Word of God tells us that Jesus is both a building block and a stumbling stone. When we believe and put our trust in Him, He becomes the cornerstone of our lives forever supporting us as we build our faith and our walk with Him. The Word says we become "living stones" being built into a "spiritual house." With each block, or stone as it were, we lay is a principle we've learned from God's Word. As we learn to rely upon Him, we grow more blocks to build His house. Precept upon precept, we become a royal priesthood indwelled by the Spirit of the living God. However, the Word goes on to say in 1 Peter 2:8 (Amplified Bible) that to those who disobey Jesus become "a Stone that will cause stumbling and a Rock that will give [men] offense." Disobedience to God and His Word only brings destruction. Like the city of blockhouses, when we reject Him, we are destined to tumble down. Obedience is a vital part of our salvation to all who give heed and obey Him." Yet why do so many Christians, who are to be Christ-like, stumble in their faith? Again, 1 Peter2:8 gives us the answer, "They stumble because they disobey and disbelieve [God's] Word."
To illustrate what I am saying let’s look again at the purple loosestrife. It is an invasive wetland perennial plant from Europe and Asia, arriving in North America as early as The 1800s by settlers for their gardens, because of its beautiful purple flower, which can produce thousands of seeds per plant. Later it was highly prized by beekeepers for the flavor produced in honey. Over the years it has spread throughout the United States and Canada causing a serious problem for our wetlands, because of its large dense growth areas it not only chokes out all other wetland plants, it also makes it impossible for many animal species which feed, nest or take cover in wetland plants to enter these dense growth areas. Now to make my point; the use of this plant started out to be innocent, first of all, it was appealing to the eye, being a perennial it would spread on its own. However, many years must have passed before the invasiveness of the plant was even notices let alone became a serious
I like to collect teacups, so when I get the chance I browse through china shops or antique stores to look for them, there is one shop, in particular, I really enjoy browsing through. One afternoon while I was there I saw a Tea-for One set that I just couldn't go home without. It had a pink rose that joined the teapot perfectly to the cup and the handles looked like a fish and it had gold edging. I asked the sales clerk if I could see it, stating how beautiful I thought it was, and then the most amazing thing happened . . . the teacup spoke! I haven't always been a teacup, there was a time all I was was a lump of red clay. My Master took me and rolled me and rolled me, then patted me all over and over again. I didn't like it, and I yelled out at him to leave me alone, but he only smiled and said, "Not Yet." Then I was placed on a spinning wheel, and suddenly I was spinning around and around and around. "Stop!" I cried, "I'm g
IT'S THAT TIME OF YEAR when the house is filled with the smell of freshly baked cookies, and in the air is a feeling of excitement as everyone runs around the house gathering up their hidden treasures. One by one they enter the wrapping room filled with boxes, paper, and bows, oh yes we mustn't forget the most sought after items of all, a box filled with everything needed to disguise the item within. As the evening comes to an end, with each one giving a big yawn we head upstairs for a long winter's nap. The chatter of voices from just an hour ago is now silent, so I slipped out of bed to check on the boys. As I pushed open each door I smiled in spite of myself seeing them snug in their beds; undoubtedly with visions of their presents filling their heads. As I gently closed their door I whispered, "Sweet dreams my little ones it won't be long now." Then I slipped down the stairs. In the quiet of the night, I cleaned up all the wrapping mess while ch