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Archive for June, 2013

MP900441048[1]All my complaining about the chilly, rainy weather has paid off. In abundance. The weather forecast is now predicting temperatures that were in the low 70’s earlier this week to be over 100 in the next few days.

Amazing how differently people react to such news. Me, I am excited. I can’t wait to strip off my sweater and enjoy some warm days. Of course, after a few miles on the bike in that kind of heat I will be cooked and panting. But I’m not thinking about that now.

My daughter, who does not do heat well, is having anxiety attacks. It hasn’t happened yet and she’s praying for a freak snowstorm.

My grandgirls have visions of hours in the other grandma’s swimming pool. My husband is rescheduling the automatic sprinklers to compensate. Stores are stocking up on ice and selling out on sunscreen. Barbecue grills are firing up. Air conditioners will soon be working overtime.

In a world that tries to control everything, all we can do is cope when it comes to weather. You can’t wish it away or plan it according to your schedule. It’s one of the few things that still remind us God is in charge.

It brings to mind Psalm 148.  Praise the LORD! Praise the LORD from the heavens! Praise him from the skies! 2 Praise him, all his angels! Praise him, all the armies of heaven! 3 Praise him, sun and moon! Praise him, all you twinkling stars! 4 Praise him, skies above! Praise him, vapors high above the clouds! 5 Let every created thing give praise to the LORD, for he issued his command, and they came into being. 6 He established them forever and forever. His orders will never be revoked. 7 Praise the LORD from the earth, you creatures of the ocean depths, 8 fire and hail, snow and storm, wind and weather that obey him, 9 mountains and all hills, fruit trees and all cedars, 10 wild animals and all livestock, reptiles and birds, 11 kings of the earth and all people, rulers and judges of the earth, 12 young men and maidens, old men and children. 13 Let them all praise the name of the LORD. For his name is very great; his glory towers over the earth and heaven! 14 He has made his people strong, honoring his godly ones — the people of Israel who are close to him. Praise the LORD!

Have you ever considered that when the sun blazes extra hot it is actually praising God at the top of its voice? When the moon is full, is it bursting with the need to proclaim His holy name? When the sky is cloudless and blindingly blue, is it expressing unblemished adoration for the Creator?  Is the soaring of a bird in the air its resounding worship song and the flash of a fish leaping from the water its attempt to get closer to God? Does the snow fall in soft, silent whispers and the wind whip in roaring triumph just to call out the name of the Lord to all who will listen.

Praising God is what we are called to do – even when our natural instinct is to complain. Nature is God’s way of assuring us that “kings of the earth and all people, rulers and judges” are absolutely equal in their stand before the Almighty, whose “glory towers over the earth and the heavens”.  When it comes to the cry in the depth of our soul, the need in the farthest corners of our heart, the aching desire of our very being – every created thing can only find fulfillment in the same response – praising God.   

As the temperature rises in the next few days, I’m challenging you to turn up your worship and adoration meter by the same degree. Don’t let the sun or the moon, the rocks or the hills, the creatures of the earth or sea outdo you.

Tape the words of this Psalm on the door to your ice maker, on the dial of your air conditioner, on the jar of barbecue sauce you’ll be using, on the bottle of sunscreen, on the drawer with your shorts and tank tops, and wherever else you can think of to remind you that no weather condition or any other condition should keep you from throwing out your arms, lifting your face to heaven and proclaiming the greatness of God.

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MB900386362[1]I can’t believe I’ve missed two weeks of blogging. But then again, with end of the school year activities for the grand girls, a grandson’s graduation in Spokane, working full time, teaching and leading music for Vacation Bible School and all the other stuff I can cram into the open spots I guess I shouldn’t be surprised.

Now I’m looking at my calendar and realize I have less than two weeks to prepare for our motorcycle trip back to the Colorado Rockies. In blunt terms, that means the dreaded packing decisions are upon me.

A Harley Davidson touring bike is big on fun but small on trunk space. You have to pack light and sparse. At the same time, you have to be prepared for anything from 100 degree heat to rain to snow to cold and windy. T-shirts and tanks are a given so I’ll throw in six or seven. They weigh nothing and take up little space. Over the years I’ve conditioned myself to one extra pair of jeans. I know – horrors – that means wearing them several days in a row but it is what it is. A couple of sweatshirts are a must to put on over the t-shirt. A turtleneck or two to put on under the t-shirt. A wool sweater just in case. Heavy gloves, light gloves, neck scarf, underwear, socks, sandals and a nightgown and I’m already over capacity. There’s still the curling iron and hair dryer. (I know most hotels have hair dryers. But, my hubby has a knack for ferreting out the ones that don’t. This post is not long enough for me to go there!) My makeup bag, small but still a space consumer and of course my Nook and writing materials are must haves.

I’m looking at the small bag that fits in the bike trunk and the big pile that doesn’t fit in the bag and realizing I’m in trouble. Plus, I haven’t begun to include any of the frivolous things my husband will want to take along like a shirt or two and maybe maps and tools to be used in case of a breakdown.

For the next few days I’ll be taking out, adding back, rolling my eyes, and starting over. I will be frustrated beyond measure and ready to bag the whole trip.

But departure day will dawn and somehow I’ll have managed. We’ll be mounted up and headed down the road to meet the couple who is going along with us. As we join up, I’ll see the huge grin on my friend’s face and I’ll remember that the next two weeks will be completely filled with laughter, most of it over nothing but the sheer fact that we enjoy each other’s company.

Together, she and I are like two giddy young girls that find everything funny and never run out of interesting things to talk about. I can’t tell you how many times our guys will tell us to cut the conversation and get on the bike. We will talk until we take off. Each time we roll up to a stop sign we’ll pick up where the latest conversation ended.

The most serious situations – flat tires, spilled coffee, antenna up the nose (that’s for another post), heavy traffic, grumpy husbands, missed turns, road construction, animals crossing the road, near empty gas tanks, minor bike repairs, sudden weather changes – you name it, we will find it funny.

She won’t care that my jeans are on their fourth day. I won’t care that she didn’t get her make up on. Neither one of us will care that we’re lost and the guys are studying maps and pulling out the GPS.

There’s the stress of getting ready to go and the pressure of catching up when you get back, but being on the road with good friends, ever changing scenery, my great love at my side and our day to day cares left behind is worth every minute of the rest.

Eleven days and counting down!

Then was our mouth filled with laughter, and our tongue with singing: then said they among the heathen, The LORD hath done great things for them. Psalm 126.2

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