<![CDATA[Magnify the Lord with Me - Under the Glass]]>Sun, 10 Sep 2017 13:28:48 -0700Weebly<![CDATA[A Higher Throne]]>Sun, 10 Sep 2017 19:56:53 GMThttp://magnifythelordwithme.com/under-the-glass/a-higher-throne


This weekend I attended the ladies retreat at my home church.
The theme was “For Such a Time as This,” taken from Esther.



I was asked to sing a song during the final service. My choice came from my thoughts about Esther going before the throne and you and I going before God's throne.


As romantic women we sometimes think of King Ahasuereus and what he thought of Esther to have allowed her to break the protocol of court. His regard for her must have been great to have accepted her into his presence when he had not called her. She was loved and valued. If you've ever watched a movie production of Esther's story, you come away in awe of Persia's King, his orderly run court, his demand for loyalty, his anything but casual adherence to dignity and law.


May I say, there is a higher throne, a grander, holier throne and "there are no casual meetings with God." Keith Carnahan


When we come before the throne of God we should be full of reverence, respect ,and humility like Esther came before Ahasuereus. We should come before God knowing that Christ has lowered the scepter. We should worship Him in spirit and in truth, we should speak as we are entreating or petitioning a king ; yet with boldness because of Christ's salvation.


During my quiet time I sometimes use mental imagery when I pray. I often imagine giving thanks to enter into the gates and coming into the courts while praising the Lord. I even imagine a doorkeeper checking the Book of Life for my name, then ushering me into the throne room. I recognize the figure standing on the left at God's right hand. He is a man ,yet the Son of God. I know the presence of the Holy Spirit. He is here to help me communicate to God the Father.


After imagining all of these things I begin to pray.

Hope you will make your way to the throne as well.



There is a Higher Throne
by Keith and Kristyn Getty

There is a Higher throne than all this world has known, Where faithful ones from ev’ry tongue will one day come. Before the Son we’ll stand, made faultless through the Lamb; Believing hearts find promised grace; salvation comes.
Refrain Hear heaven’s voices sing; their thund’rous anthem rings. Through em’rald courts and sapphire skies their praises rise. All glory, wisdom, pow’r, strength, thanks, and honor are to God our King who reigns on high forevermore.
2 And there we’ll find our home, our life before the throne. We’ll honor him in perfect song where we belong. He’ll wipe each tear-stained eye as thirst and hunger die. The Lamb becomes our Shepherd-King; we’ll reign with him.
Refrain


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<![CDATA[Back to School & Taking a Test]]>Mon, 14 Aug 2017 21:09:29 GMThttp://magnifythelordwithme.com/under-the-glass/back-to-school-taking-a-test
This morning I found myself praying for ease. 

"Lord, I am weak. I am not ready for testing. Please can you just let me rest? Can you meet all my needs really soon and let me just be comfortable, for a little while? 

We sang this hymn later during the morning service. Two lines in the last verse rang out to me...

Let Him Have His Way with Thee | Cyrus S. Nusbaum

  1. Would you live for Jesus, and be always pure and good?
    Would you walk with Him within the narrow road?
    Would you have Him bear your burden, carry all your load?
    Let Him have His way with thee.
    • Refrain:
      His pow’r can make you what you ought to be;
      His blood can cleanse your heart and make you free;
      His love can fill your soul, and you will see
      ’Twas best for Him to have His way with thee.
  2. Would you have Him make you free, and follow at His call?
    Would you know the peace that comes by giving all?
    Would you have Him save you, so that you need never fall?
    Let Him have His way with thee.
  3. Would you in His kingdom find a place of constant rest?
    Would you prove Him true in providential test?
    Would you in His service labor always at your best?

    Let Him have His way with thee.


I hate tests!
I have never been one to get straight A's, and often struggled to just pass certain subjects.
Today I find myself feeling like a school student on the morning of an algebra exam,
knowing that God is a God of absolutes,
knowing their is value in the knowledge being taught,
caring  that I may fail,
scared that my hours of study are just not enough to get me through,
and feeling so inadequate and ill-prepared for the testing.


 Did you ever ask your teacher to postpone a test? Maybe even come in late on purpose to put off the assessment.
 
Hand raised..."I need a better pencil...I could use some scrap paper...am I allowed to use a calculator?


"Lord, I need good things....kindness...blessings...am I allowed to just skip this and rest?

Yet I find that I am in the exam room, the time of testing already begun, the class already given , the syllabus read, yet like in Algebra, I feel so frustrated.

Slowly, the problems come into focus... "oh, help"!

 Either time will run out, or I will finish every problem with something gained.
I want more than just to survive this hour. I want to pass. I want to magnify the Lord.

There are principles to follow. Didn't I learn them?

James 5:13 a 
Is any among you afflicted? let him pray.

I Peter 5:7
Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.


Have I put enough of them to memory?

 IITimothy 2:15
Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.


Truly, the Syllabus is all I need to know.

It is that time.

Time to set the alarms, encourage right attitudes, remind our children of the importance of education.
God too has set alarms through messages and preaching.
He encourages us to assemble ourselves to worship and fellowship in Christ.
He gave us the Word of God, all we need to find the knowledge we need to succeed, the principles we need to live for Christ, and  the formulas we need to find joy in the living. 


Back to School...
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<![CDATA[George Washington]]>Mon, 20 Feb 2017 08:00:00 GMThttp://magnifythelordwithme.com/under-the-glass/george-washingtonPicture

​George Washington, born February 22, 1732, was nearly America’s first king. He has been revered by many as the “indispensable man” in America’s founding. There would not be an America as we know it without him, and had he agreed to be our king, America would be a different place for sure. The Presidency is not what made George Washington famous, as most people today might think, but rather it was George Washington that made the presidency what it is in many respects.


By the time he was in his early twenties, he owned nearly twenty-five hundred acres of land, and his military fame had been published in London in a pamphlet, The Journal of Major George Washington.

He was a man of power and prestige, stature and symbolism, but according to 7Men and the Secret of Their Greatness by Eric Metaxas, he should be known for the moments when he surrendered his own power to God. I agree. George was another man that God magnified, and then in the moment God brought the power to a test, and he was the first of many presidents and America’s founders who turned the magnification of power back on to the God who made him.

                                                                                    ~~~
 
Is it too late for a new year’s resolution? I’m making one today…in the year to come and years to come, I am going to (Lord-Willing) read a biography about every American President.  This is going to be quite a hard job, but that’s my goal. I’ll keep you posted.

Hope you had a nice Presidents Day! 
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<![CDATA[Looking Back & Looking Forward]]>Sat, 07 Jan 2017 18:18:59 GMThttp://magnifythelordwithme.com/under-the-glass/looking-back-looking-forward
To those of you who would read if I wrote ...for those of you who read when I do write,

             There is a basket in my house full of notes and sheets of half finished letters and posts to you.  Knowing I only posted a handful of times this year bothers me; however when I did write,... you read and shared. Thank you.  This letter is my attempt at sharing with you my New Year's Resolutions. My attempt to encourage you in this new year, 2017!  First, let me recap 2016 for you.   If you care to read....
Last January was one of the highlights of our lives. Like the author of  The Tale of Two Cities we too can say it was the best of times and it was the worst of times. 
  Only six months prior, we had pulled up and moved away from our home of sixteen years, away from our family, away from a wonderful church , and away from secure jobs. We took those blind steps of faith.  There were more needs and uncomfortable positions than I care to describe, yet God provided!!! Grace came in unexpected and often amazing ways!
(Link to a post written during this time) 
In many ways we were vulnerable and exhausted ....; yet we were indescribably happy and content. Tom completed one of the most rigorous police academies in the nation and at the age of 45! I cannot be more proud and thankful for him.  

The rest of the year seemed to be a blur of a "new" ordinary. Often he came home with interesting stories , at least they were to us ; however these quickly became his "ordinary". My ordinary consisted of one of the hardest things I've ever done...Home schooling!!!

All in all,  I'm sure my year was a lot like yours with the bills, the sickness , the news , the waiting, the correction, the blessings, and much prayer. Really we each have stories to tell, and an Ebeneezer to raise.


 Many things were captured by my camera as you have seen.

 Looking back, 2016 was a year full of change, pleasures, and sorrows.  I am thankful for the year past and the future in the year to come.
  
Looking forward, there are so many things I want to finish writing, start writing , capture and share with you. We will start with this ...

My most fulfilling years have been when my New Year's Resolutions consisted of more than just temporal goals. When I determined to live by a chosen verse and make spiritual goals, God took my time and blessed my living.  

This year my verse is...

Philippians 4:8  Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things. 
 
Yes, it is a verse that has been known for quite sometime, but this year, I want to understand it and live it.  This will be very personal for me.  It pertains more to my thoughts than any outward habits. You see, the "what if's" have  begun pushing their way to the front of my thoughts.  The risks and fear associated with my husband's job have progressively become more real to me. Perhaps now I can say, "I'm not the rookie's wife anymore."   Tom has been an officer for a whole year. While I know that doesn't make me any kind of expert, it does make me more experienced than I was. After our little drama this past September, and the  reports throughout the year concerning the Blue family, I need to train my mind on trusting God, counting blessings, naming those grace moments, and storing up strength for what if's God might call us or our family(s) through.   

Will you continue to magnify the Lord with me in the ordinary days and in ordinary ways in spite of incomprehensible responsibilities and sorrows? Two Thousand Seventeen awaits!
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<![CDATA[What Can I Do?]]>Tue, 20 Sep 2016 21:28:35 GMThttp://magnifythelordwithme.com/under-the-glass/what-can-i-do

​ More…more incomprehensible news!


More unthinkable challenges for law enforcement, more inconceivable sorrow for the dead’s loved ones, and more realities and lies we would rather not face! 

What can I do ?   The fear is pushing on my heart’s door.
 I want to give clarity to every officer in the moment of decision.
I want so badly to take away the sorrow and grief others are feeling.
I want to take away the innocent’s shock and wondering.
I want to take away the warrior’s wives’ loneliness and despair.
I want to shut the mouths of race baiters and those who think they know how things should be judged, NOW.



                                                                      But i…i am not God.


I read these verses this morning and I have read them over and over today.


For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD.
For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.  Isaiah 55:9
 

 Only the chapter before I read …

No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper; and every tongue that shall rise against thee in judgment thou shalt condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the LORD, and their righteousness is of me, saith the LORD.      Isaiah 54:17 
 
Lord, may this apply to me and mine?

                                       What can I do?


Recently the opportunity to attend citizen’s police academy presented itself, and while I have only attended six hours of instruction, the feeling that my maxim of  rising “to praise a good God in spite of incomprehensible responsibilities and sorrows” has an exactness that even I did not know when I wrote it down. 

​ In my notes of police history and chains of command, I struggled to shorthand all that was being said of insupportable crimes and incogitable situations in which officers must work and succeed. The perfect intent of internal affairs and most departments, yet the often imperfect execution of policies which fall short of the unimaginable consequences of people’s sin had my safe, homeschool mama mind drowning.

I determined right there that I was going to persistently pray for my husband, his peers, and his department.

For my own reminder, I put down, “Take joy in the ordinary days, they are safe and more available to praise God . Build up a store of memory in these easy days so that in the hard times the remembering of good things will come more easily.” Not sure why that came to mind except, my experience at home is guarded and routine, I know how change can come in a moment... The moment you read a news article, the moment you read ignorant comments, the moment you find out how their day went. I am constantly trying to learn and analyze as the wife of a law enforcement officer.  I realize what a difference a day can make. 
 
Those hard days come more regularly in this secular culture. They come more regularly in my husband’s line of employment.  I want to know what can I do?

 The Bible is full of answers for me and you. 
 
# 3 things you can do
 
#1
Join others in prayer
If you are not consistently praying for government and local officials, you have no place to complain or criticize. 

I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men; 
  For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty. ​ I Timothy 2:1,2

#2 Show support and thanks

#3 Seek out opportunities such as attending a Citizen's Police Academy, or a ride along to understand your local law enforcement.


Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man. Luke 21:36


 Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. Philippians 4:6



                    

When the days are anything but ordinary
And the praise is caught in our throats
The sobs cover all, and strength is so small
God can still be magnified in us.
When trust in the Lord is your all
Through implausible shock and awe
When the loss feels too great,
Yet you know you can’t hate
He can still magnify himself to us
He wishes to give in the moment we live
The hope, the strength, and the joy.
So push through and sing and it will eventually seem
 As though nothing was the matter at all.
Through prayer He can heal and with praise He can seal
 Our eternity and anything.
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<![CDATA[Questioning God]]>Wed, 31 Aug 2016 03:35:50 GMThttp://magnifythelordwithme.com/under-the-glass/questioning-god

The morning had started off in the usual manner, and my three year old had her usual morning attitude.  She is often the first one out and about, making her way to her Dad’s chair, and whining for something or other. We have moved past a cup of milk, but whatever her discomfort, she will let us know about it. On this morning she was doing well at not whining as I often instruct her, but I was not prepared for her next question.

“Ugh! Why did God make our backs to scratch, and we can’t itch it?” she asked, disgusted.

I laughed at this tiny girl’s ministrations as she tried to relieve her itching, then I was struck with her attitude, and the danger of such an attitude. My first reaction was to harshly correct the attitude, but her dad offered his assistance.

“If you come over here, I will scratch it for you.”  She made her way over to him, and appreciated the helpful hand. Looking up she said, “You got the spot.” Again I coached her to say “thank you.”

​Perhaps her father’s patience was the best thing for her…I know that my Heavenly Father’s patience was best for me. He lovingly corrects our ill assumptions with His goodness. I am grateful for this morning and that God allows us to question Him. His patience is precious.


Romans_2:4  Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance?


Perhaps someday, she will realize and be grateful for her earthly daddy and her Heavenly Father.
 
Written over three years ago.
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<![CDATA[Reconciled with Death]]>Mon, 18 Jul 2016 15:40:03 GMThttp://magnifythelordwithme.com/under-the-glass/reconciled-with-death

A few days ago I attended a police wives meeting and one of the local chaplains was scheduled to come talk with us.
Death notification was a main discussion point and that day,...it seemed harsh to some, yet timely for others. We had all had the recent shootings on our minds, and while some of us had to be coaxed into openly conversing over the topic, we all knew that it needed to be done. Only hours before we had read about more terrorism in Baton Rouge.

I had cut a small length of black ribbon and attached it to the necklace my husband had bought for me, a replica of his badge. I hadn't thought of it until this moment even though my husband's badge had been covered many days since...
 
My mind goes back to those first conversations with him about his becoming a Law Enforcement Officer.   I too had to be coaxed into sharing those “what if” thoughts. I didn't actually voice them all, yet he looked at me and said, “Rachel, if God can use my funeral, the funeral of a police officer more than he can use me living...
if my death brings Him more glory than my life.... than …


I can’t remember exactly the words he used to finish, but just as sure as he read my mind, I read his.
 
We reconciled death to be a worthy price to pay for the One who had done so much for us. You see, Tom didn’t just choose this profession. God called him and led us to this service field.

 We reconciled death with God's timing, His will, and His glory...His choice.
 Just as He, God  reconciled Jesus Christ's death to be a worthy price to pay for the sin of the world, my sin , your sin, and  yes, ...even the sin of those terrorist bent on killing life,

blue lives, black lives, white lives, any and/or all lives.

merriam-webster/dictionary/reconcile   ~

  to make consistent or congruous <reconcile an ideal with reality>
  to cause to submit to or accept something unpleasant 

 

For those who reconcile with death, they come to agreement in mind and heart, and sometimes their soul that their life given is worth…their calling, their beliefs, the love of their God or god.


The crux is in that which they view as truth.  

Everyone should reconcile with death. Why? Because death is as sure as life.
These two  when joined in purpose give meaning to an individual’s life. God thought this so important He recorded it at least six times in the Gospels.
Jesus himself claimed that life and death should be reconciled for His sake. 

Matthew 10:39
He that findeth his life shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for my sake shall find it.
Matthew 16:25  For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it.
Mark_8:35  For whosoever will save his life shall lose it; but whosoever shall lose his life for my sake and the gospel's, the same shall save it.
Luke_9:24  For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: but whosoever will lose his life for my sake, the same shall save it.
Luke_17:33  Whosoever shall seek to save his life shall lose it; and whosoever shall lose his life shall preserve it.
John_12:25  He that loveth his life shall lose it; and he that hateth his life in this world shall keep it unto life eternal.



Two seemingly opposed ideas of living and dying coming together in agreement to Truth.
Jesus also claimed to be the Way, the Truth, and the Life.
 
 
John_14:6 
Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.

 

For officers, they view the saving and serving of their community worth the cost of their living and sometimes even their dying. For a Christian officer this idea is in obedience to their faith and trust in God.


This does not mean that death is powerless. It does not mean that our feelings are negated. It does not mean the absence of intense mourning. 

Even Christ said, “Why” on the cross.
 
Matthew_27:46  And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?
 

Even Christ asked for the cup of sin and death to pass from Him.
 
 Matthew_26:39  And he went a little further, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt.
 
This does not mean that fear does not come again. It means that this reconciling with death has to happen repeatedly. The reminders and repetition will make the actual dying to be done well.

I would not choose for my husband  or anyone’s loved one to die, but I have a sure hope!
My hope is in the Lord!  I pray the psalms of David over my  peace warrior husband, not because this will magically stay evil’s hand, but because I am reconciled with death and I claim strength in these Words. God has not failed the dead! Jesus took it captive!
 

Rev_1:18  I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death.
 
All of the officers and soldiers have not failed in death but have planted seeds of freedom and righteousness. God’s glory is greater than this culture of death. His glory only needs to be magnified. His grace needs to be magnified. He needs to be magnified in us! Even in these days of  incomprehensible responsibilities and sorrows!

God will never waste our pain, He is the Redeemer of broken things!
 
1Corinthians 15:55-58  
O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?
 The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law.
  But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
 Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.



Stay strong peace maker! Stay strong blue family!  I pray you will stand in Christ!

 
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<![CDATA[Well Doing]]>Fri, 08 Jul 2016 21:49:54 GMThttp://magnifythelordwithme.com/under-the-glass/well-doing

Do you ever feel like you are just surviving? ... like you are not  able to be enough to each person in your life. 

The day exacts more than you can give, and yet you know your family and friends need so much more.

There are always needs and some are more important than the familiar,  daily demands, and then the ordinary way of things is interrupted by once in a lifetime experiences. You push through adding  the extra to your already multifarious responsibilities; little time and even less money for pleasures and solace or those dates with your mate.

My introverted personality and my Martha mind tend to put communication at the end of my list. I would rather put checks by jobs than spend time in often unappreciated relational tasks.

My Mary heart knows that there is a needful thing in each kinship.

God's priority is on relationship and the Holy Spirit's fruit is always used in personal ways. Again I remind my Martha mind that my Mary heart needs to break my bottle of  time and projects for the good of anointing loved ones.  

Galatians 6:9
 And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not. 



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<![CDATA[Coincidence?]]>Fri, 13 Nov 2015 18:18:16 GMThttp://magnifythelordwithme.com/under-the-glass/coincidence
There is no word for coincidence in the Hebrew language. 

 They don't believe there is such a thing. God is in control of the way our lives play out. 

 He allows negatives in His permission, 
     and blesses from His goodness. 

Some have called this Divine Providence.

My dear friend told me that just a few days ago as we shared our grief together.  That day I felt as though the pain was divided.

Share your grief , divide your pain. I've heard that before , somewhere. 

For each sorrow  or stress on my mind lately, God has sent someone who knows and understands to comfort me.  The loss of my younger brother...then came Stephanie and Laura...not to mention all the cards and calls from hundreds of others! My mother's kidney troubles...understood by Tamara.  Health concerns...and yet another who knows.The pain of my loved ones...those who knew told me they understood and were lifting my loved ones to God in prayer.

Many would say coincidence, but I know I found them just when God knew I needed them. They share my grief, and it divided my pain. There is always, always grace, if we see it.
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<![CDATA[Throwback Thankfulness]]>Mon, 02 Nov 2015 21:04:55 GMThttp://magnifythelordwithme.com/under-the-glass/throwback-thankfulness
 I've decided to take an inventory of my blog, to go back and reevaluate the posts, and to plan for the future of this endeavor to magnify the LORD on the world wide web.


 Really,  my intent is just to brighten this corner where I am and leave the rest to God's perspicacity! 


 I am also learning as I write, new words, age-old principles, hidden verses, redemptive love and abundant life.


 My theme thus far has been to "encourage extraordinary praise in the ordinary days and in ordinary ways".  As a janitor that really fit the purpose of my life ,but our days have become anything but ordinary!


 This new life God has called us to has drama and surprise around every corner.   While we still need to be grateful in the drudgery of  many common demands, we also need to rise up to unthinkable challenges, inconceivable sorrow, and realities we would rather not understand! 

 I hope you will Magnify the Lord with me in the ordinary days and in ordinary ways and rise to praise a good God in spite of  incomprehensible responsibilities and sorrows!


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