Tuesday, May 2, 2023

The Trampled Lilies

Our calla lilies

 I love Spring.

I love the bright green of the new leaves on the trees, the blue of the skies and the flowers coming up and pushing their pretty faces to the sun.  

Every day our dog Ellie and I review the flowers in the garden to see what is blooming, what is not (and why not?) and to see which plant the neighborhood cat has used as a bed this time.  Last night she slept on a group of calla lilies which were young enough to have their stalks snapped in two.

I don't remember when the cat first arrived, but as long as I have had flowers in this bed, she has been thinking I literally mean bed.  She has squashed all manner of flowers and each year I try some new trick to keep her from doing it.   Ellie even tries to chase her away when she sees her outside, but the cat always comes back.

I realize the cat isn't maliciously trying to destroy my flowers.  She is a cat that has no home and seeks what comfort she can.  I feel sorry for her.   After all, the lilies will come back up next year.

We all have people who come into our lives and in some way irritate, aggravate, annoy or disturb us.  Perhaps they harm something we care for.  Maybe they simply pose an inconvenience to us.  Regardless of their intent, it will be a great temptation to give in to those initial feelings of resentment, irritation and disturbance.  But those negatives present us with a great choice.  A choice of faith.  Will we believe that those feelings are the essence of who we are, or are we those who, by faith in the Lord Jesus, have His Holy Spirit abiding within us?  The choice is ours and how we choose will determine how we respond.

But how we choose does not just affect us, it can also affect the person causing the disturbance in our lives.  An act of undeserved mercy toward a person can often point them in the direction of  the King of Mercy in a way all the sermons on the earth cannot.  That one act of kindness may soften a hardened heart more than anything else.

I used to have a sign in my Dining Room that read,

"Only God and people are eternal.  Everything else is just stuff."  

What is the most important things in our interactions with others?  First of all, knowing the Lord is at work in every moment of every person's life, drawing them closer to Himself.  Secondly, that we are called to "walk as He walked" in love and kindness to others.  

Everything else is just stuff...including calla lilies.

"He that saith he abideth in Him 
ought himself also so to walk, even as He walked."
I John 2:6

"And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given Himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweetsmelling savour."
Ephesians 5:2

Monday, May 1, 2023

What a Glorious Day!

Baby Ellie

 Three years ago today we drove 172 miles to Livingston, LA to pick up  our new beagle, Ellie.  Our previous beagle, Sparrow, had passed away three months before and our grieving hearts longed for a sweet bundle of beagle to love.

 We were so excited during the drive.  We had seen photos and videos of Ellie, but now we would see her face to face, and bring her home with us, too.  Before we knew it, we were pulling into Mrs. Lisa and Mr. Jeff's  driveway.

Mrs. Lisa opened the door where a mass of little beagles were sleeping on the floor.  She picked up Ellie and my heart just melted.  She was only 3 1/2 pounds of soft, sweet smelling puppy.  We took turns loving her while Mrs. Lisa clipped her nails, gave us food for the week (to help her transition to the food we would be giving her) and explained her registration papers to us.  Then we went outside to leave.  

Mrs. Lisa asked to see her one more time.  She lifted Ellie to her face and prayed 
she would minister love and joy to everyone she met. What a sweet blessing for Mrs. Lisa to pray over her!  She gave her a final kiss and cuddle and we were on our way, the new member of the family asleep in my lap in the back seat.  

It was the first of many wonderful days and a wonderful relationship.  Ellie has grown into a sweet, loving dog, even though we still call her a puppy.  She has been more than we could have ever hoped for.  And no, she is not spoiled, she is greatly loved.  I often think of how Mrs. Lisa's words have come true.  Ellie is a blessing, a source of love and joy to so many, the least of all the two of us.  

Thinking of our trip to Louisiana that day, reminds me of another day.  A day we will meet someone we have been wanting to see in person for some time.  The Scriptures tell us of that day, 

"For the Lord Himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, 
with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: 
and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain 
shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, 
to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord." 
(1 Thessalonians 4:17, 18)

One day we shall meet our Lord face to face.  Oh what a glorious day that will be!  Our greatest moment on this earth will grow dim and dark when compared to seeing our Lord, our Maker, our Sustainer, our Strength  and  our Friend,  for the very first time. What a glorious day, indeed!  We can only echo the Apostle John, 

"Even so, come, Lord Jesus."
Revelation 22:20

Ellie Jean Louise Davis

What a Day That Will Be
by Jim Hill


There is coming a day,
When no heart aches shall come,
No more clouds in the sky,
No more tears to dim the eye,
All is peace forever more,
On that happy golden shore,
What a day, glorious day that will be.


What a day that will be,
When my Jesus I shall see,
And I look upon His face,
The One who saved me by His grace;
When He takes me by the hand,
And leads me through the Promised Land,
What a day, glorious day that will be.


There’ll be no sorrow there,
No more burdens to bear,
No more sickness, no pain,
No more parting over there;
And forever I will be,
With the One who died for me,
What a day, glorious day that will be.


What a day that will be,
When my Jesus I shall see,
And I look upon His face,
The One who saved me by His grace;
When He takes me by the hand,
And leads me through the Promised Land,
What a day, glorious day that will be.