Saturday, May 29, 2010


"'When our Lord and Master, Jesus Christ, said 'Repent,' He called for the entire life of believers to be one of repentance.' If we would find reformation again, we must repent of our failure to live lives of repentance."

RC Sproul, Jr, writing about Luther's first thesis.

Sunday, May 23, 2010


I long for something I cannot name.

I long to be something I cannot be
to have something I cannot have
to see something I cannot see
to know something I cannot know
to feel something I cannot feel.

I long to be known completely
to be loved perfectly
to be cared for
to be rescued.

I long to be free
to worship with my whole being
to give myself without hesitation or reservation
to be totally unselfconscious
to lose myself.

What I long for is God in Heaven.

Yet I am here, on earth.
Here the air is thick
the view is obscured
my mind is foggy
my sin nature fights against me.
Here there is pain
An enemy within and without.

Even so
He is Immanuel – God with us.
His Word is in my hands, my head, my heart.
He planned my salvation - He came to me and He made a way for me to come to Him.
He lives in me - He is the Holy Spirit
Lover of my soul.

He is all these things
here and now
on this Earth.

He is already what I long for, and one day
He will take me home and
make me what I long to be.
©Rebecca A Givens, 05/09/10

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Monday, May 17, 2010


"God delights to increase the faith of His children. We ought, instead of wanting no trials before victory, no exercise for patience, to be willing to take them from God's hand as a means. Trials, obstacles, difficulties, and sometime defeats, are the very food of faith." George Mueller

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Monday, May 10, 2010

The Rose

My daughter is a dancer. This weekend she is performing in a wonderful ballet called “The Battle for Lucinda’s Heart.” Yesterday I was in my yard and I walked by the roses – they were fabulous in red, pink, and yellow – and I decided to take some to give to Sarah after the performance. After carefully looking at all of them, I chose a stem of simple yellow roses. There was a mature bloom and several small buds, and something about the old fashioned look of it appealed to me. Sarah’s artistic temperament is sometimes hard to predict, but she likes to be different and somehow the simplicity felt right. Cutting them proved to be a bit tricky though, as I discovered there were thorns not only along the stem, but even under the leaves. I wrapped the whole thing up in a damp paper towel and a plastic bag so there would be a way to hold it without getting stabbed, and off my niece and I went to the opening matinee performance.

The place fills up quickly, so we got there early to wait in line and get a good seat. Other patrons had flowers too… big fancy bouquets for the most part. Hmm. That’s ok, my flower was much more personal. We went in and sat down and waited some more. I looked around at the packed auditorium, and then I looked down at my one mature rose. It was wilting. Well, whatever. Didn’t matter. The lights went out, the curtain rose, and we were whisked into the world of the story. Intermission came and people got up to stretch and talk. As I chatted with my niece I noticed my rose was positively limp. The thing was just dead, no way around it. Dang. This particular child does have a fascination with dead things, after all. Maybe it would be ok - as long as all those people with giant bouquets didn’t see it.

The performance ended and we walked around back to wait for Sarah. Thankfully, the adoring public stayed in the lobby so I didn’t have to look at those huge, living flowers anymore. My single dead rose didn’t look quite so bad with nothing to compare it to. Sarah came out wearing her tacky backstage clothes and that helped. Giving her a dead flower actually sort of looked in keeping with the way she was dressed, and at one point she had even been an evil shadow on stage… at least she wasn’t wearing her fancy courtier-at-the-ball costume at this moment.
I looked at my daughter and I was so proud of her, of her performance, of her hard work, of the courage to get up on that stage and dance and smile. And all I had to give her was a dead flower with thorns. It was sad.

Being a parent is like that. Even with time and care, all I have to give to my kids amounts to nothing more than a dead flower, unless God breathes life into me and into what I have. I have nothing on my own to give, the only thing I have of value is God. Am I giving God to my kids? or is it just dead flowers and thorns?

Heavenly Father, give life to my parenting. Use me to pass Your Spiritual Life to my kids. Let Your Light and Life shine through me into them, and from them into their future children. Oh God, turn my dead flowers and thorns into a life of beauty and grace. Oh yeah, and God, help my husband find a nice bouquet for today! Amen.

©Rebecca A Givens, 05/09/10