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Colossians 3:12-14 NKJV

“Put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering; bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do. But above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfection.”

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A Walk with Purpose | Contemplations in essays, creative prose, and poetry | A Christian's perspective on life, written by someone who happens to be working to health from chronic illness | May your day be brighter and your dreams sweeter | © 2012-2019 Bernadette Saddik, RoomFullOfIdeas.com | All rights reserved. I am not an expert. All photos, writing, and anything else posted is my own unless otherwise stated. Please, if you would like to share, give credit to the author. The content on this site is not professional advice or analysis. Please note that your comments are subject to moderation. Thank you.

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Smile Bright Balloon | God’s Peace on Earth

January 7, 2018 - Author: Bernadette Saddik

Post Context/Backstory

“Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call His name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, ‘God with us.'” Matthew 1:23 KJV

“And it came to pass, that, while they communed together and reasoned, Jesus Himself drew near, and went with them. But their eyes were holden that they should not know Him.” Luke 24:15-16 KJV

I admit that plodding along alone today, a frown did mark my presence. In such a countenance, I met a fellow traveler, a stranger with a smile
and a balloon.

Then at me this stranger beamed and in response, my face could only resurrect — thus was shared that profound graceful peace of spirit. The balloon the stranger gave me, I reckon, helped.

Onward I progressed, eyes held high above the pain — bright face illumined by that sweet-relief balloon — to counteract my counting ev’ry vice and virtue. Maybe life isn’t all that bad.

!!!
Or maybe, it is.

Looking up was hard enough without attending to (misconceived) notions and (misused) will blown asunder. And without that balloon to help remember, my (misapplied) memories turned to tears that muddled through the mess.

What else was there to do but clear this rubble from the narrow path? Meanwhile, through the noise in my head, in the ruins a small card sighed nearly unheard. It reads one word, and one Word is all it needs.

~ Hope ~
Maybe life isn’t all that bad.

I held the card up to my heart and let it soak those four letters — the story of rebirth — while I dusted off, reprayed; and then I smiled (though a little smaller, it was also a lot more assured).

Encountering one who could have been me not eight long steps ago, I gathered to hold out my heart to be a strange stranger. Maybe a kindness can make a difference.

!!!
Or maybe not.

My note and heart they snatched and trampled sparked a dim internal stage:
Those tears escaped their burnt-out cage while I built myself my own, bound by the laws of man and failure.

Fallen from the shambles when a gentle hand, compelling, awed me from my body of death, I deferred to its insistence — another smiling stranger, no balloon, though no note, action spoke.

~ Mercy ~
Maybe a kindness can make a difference.

That unwavering smile and sureness of step wrote a star in the stillness of even our darkest nights, and, in the silence, declared all I needed to hear for my soul to learn to sing.

At the parting crossroads, we did not fully part; the no-longer-a-stranger seemed to etch in me a soothing melody, also revealing that I still held the balloon also no-longer-a-stranger close as well.

Walking on, I have been pushed and shoved, and I am sorry to say that I have done my (un)fair share too. Yet those now-familiar strangers, in God’s goodness, still appear.

I have noticed in the face of each new stranger — despite, in spite, and from their hurt and sorrow — a strange persistence of compassion, love, and joy.

But is their brightness any wonder, when martyrs join the choir, and angels praise and glory, and the Theotokos magnifies the newborn King?
With them the wise men and the shepherds would agree.

What blessings that the balloon, note, and song demand in me courage to nurture my feeble attempts, however faint, to follow after the models of those now-unveiled everyday messengers and saints.

“…It seemed good to me also, having had perfect understanding of all things from the very first, to write unto thee in order…” from Luke 1:3 KJV

“And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call His name Jesus: for He shall save His people from their sins.” Matthew 1:21 KJV

“And their eyes were opened, and they knew Him; and He vanished out of their sight…
And as they thus spake, Jesus Himself stood in the midst of them, and said unto them,
‘Peace be unto you’…and said unto them,
‘Thus it is written, and thus it behooved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day: and that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in His name among all nations…” Luke 24:31, 36, 46-47a KJV

“And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told unto them.” Luke 2:20 KJV

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There Is No Fear in Love

January 2, 2018 - Author: Bernadette Saddik

It is not necessary to read the indented text for the essence of this post (for a version without the indented text, click here), but if you are interested, I elaborate its meaning here: Post Context/Backstory

+ + +

“Love has been perfected among us in this: that we may have boldness in the day of judgment; because as He is, so are we in this world. There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love. We love Him because He first loved us.” 1 John 4:17-19 NKJV

+ + +

Surrounding armies dare to conquer me,
call to destroy me – there will be no mercy –

come out come out wherever you are we are in heart soul nowhere not in nothingness how delightful my enemy’s enemies tearing you apart hunting for me your shredded flesh a delicious decoration to my crown

“Consider and hear me, O Lord my God: lighten mine eyes…lest mine enemy say, ‘I have prevailed against him;’ and those that trouble me rejoice when I am moved.” Psalm 13:3-4 KJV

Still There is no fear in love

Surrounding armies did not,
could not conquer Elisha with ample ammunition,
and so they did not,
could not destroy him.

“…I have trusted in Thy mercy; my heart shall rejoice in Thy salvation. I will sing unto the Lord, because He hath dealt bountifully with me.” Psalm 13:5-6 KJV

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Shadowing voices dare to cripple me,
call to deplete me – reduced to a quarry –

what made you believe you could avoid me you dust reality is of dismal disposition no discarding this desperate despondence you can not will not shall not run further spent from the chase your mind is a ghost town

“I sink in deep mire, where there is no standing: I am come into deep waters, where the floods overflow me. I am weary of my crying: my throat is dried: mine eyes fail while I wait for my God.” Psalm 69:2-3 KJV

However There is no fear in love

Shadowing voices did not,
could not cripple Elijah throughout the searching kingdoms,
and so they did not,
could not deplete him.

“…as for me, my prayer is unto Thee, O Lord…Draw nigh unto my soul, and redeem it: deliver me because of mine enemies…I will praise the name of God with a song, and will magnify Him with thanksgiving…” Psalm 69:13, 18, 30 KJV

+ + +

Pervading darkness dares to conceal me,
calls to delude me – doubting that which I see –

zealous for too narrow open eyes before ruins unveil absorb the present the self-serving satisfaction careen love to the easy sign with breath your future for the moment fog spins a seductive temporary gown

“In the day of my trouble I sought the Lord: my sore ran in the night, and ceased not: my soul refused to be comforted. I remembered God, and was troubled: I complained, and my spirit was overwhelmed. Selah.” Psalm 77:2-3 KJV

No matter what There is no fear in love

Pervading darkness did not,
could not conceal Josiah far from burning wondrous Truth,
and so it did not,
could not delude him.

“I will meditate also of all Thy work, and talk of Thy doings. Thy way, O God, is in the sanctuary: who is so great a God as our God? Thou art the God that does wonders: Thou hast declared Thy strength among the people.” Psalm 77:12-14 KJV

+ + +

Circling lions dare to consume me,
call to devour me – they wrecked the escape keys –

frayed nerves make a meal for the famished feeding on enough enough enough quiet already go away overmuch you supply a hearty one when you can not will not shall not move your way past my infamous renown

“For the enemy hath persecuted my soul; he hath smitten my life down to the ground; he hath made me to dwell in darkness, as those that have been long dead. Therefore is my spirit overwhelmed within me; my heart within me is desolate.” Psalm 143:3-4 KJV

Even then There is no fear in love

Circling lions did not,
could not consume Daniel, nor maim nor mar with hungry jaws,
and so they did not,
could not devour him.

“Cause me to hear Thy lovingkindness in the morning; for in Thee do I trust: cause me to know the way wherein I should walk; for I lift up my soul unto Thee. Teach me to do Thy will; for Thou art my God: Thy spirit is good.” Psalm 143:9-10a KJV

+ + +

Beleaguering rebels dare to confuse me,
call to deceive me – long lost was my safety –

my sweet words only honey taste until you claim tongue no more but a worm for a mouth and your ears putty in my hands you silly one useless yes unworthy yes worthless yes frowns are smiles and smiles are frowns

“The proud persecute me wrongfully; help Thou me….I am Thine, save me: for I have sought Thy precepts. The wicked have waited for me to destroy me…I have stuck unto Thy testimonies: O Lord, put me not to shame.” Psalm 119:86b, 94-95a, 31 KJV

Thereupon There is no fear in love

Beleaguering rebels did not,
could not confuse Jephthah with skilled treacherous expression,
and so they did not,
could not deceive him.

“Thou hast dealt well with Thy servant, O Lord, according unto Thy word…Quicken me after Thy lovingkindness; so shall I keep the testimony of Thy mouth. Forever, O Lord, Thy word is settled in heaven.” Psalm 119:65, 88-89 KJV

+ + +

Towering giants dare to crumple me,
call to defeat me – the deprecated free –

you are small you can not will not shall not stand why bother you bug under my heel foil crumbling in my fist door fragmented by my might your castle all comes crashing down down down

“I am counted with them that go down into the pit: I am as a man that hath no strength…I am afflicted and ready to die from my youth up…They came round about me daily like water; they compassed me about together.” Psalm 88:4, 15a, 17 KJV

Yet There is no fear in love

Towering giants did not,
could not crumple David with their bombastic brawn and clout,
and so they did not,
could not defeat him.

“O LORD God of my salvation, I have cried day and night before Thee: let my prayer come before Thee: incline Thine ear unto my cry…unto Thee have I cried, O Lord; and in the morning shall my prayer come before Thee.” Psalm 88: 1-2, 13 KJV

+ + +

Tormenting soldiers dare to capture me,
call to disarm me – and scorch any beauty –

you think you can flee from me gone but not forever there is no forever only slam now slash splinter silent screaming you can’t help yourself you will bow to chaos in pain and in devastation you will drown

“Because of the voice of the enemy…and in wrath they hate me…my heart is sore pained within me: and the terrors of death are fallen upon me. Fearfulness and trembling are come upon me, and horror hath overwhelmed me.” Psalm 55:3-5 KJV

Nevertheless There is no fear in love

Tormenting soldiers did not,
could not capture Abel’s wise woman’s city in the siege,
and so they did not,
could not disarm it.

“As for me, I will call upon God; and the Lord shall save me…He hath delivered my soul in peace from the battle that was against me…He shall never suffer the righteous to be moved…I will trust in Thee.” Psalm 55:16, 18, 22-23 KJV

+ + +

Our Lord Jesus Christ has mercy for us, heirs saved from the quarry. By His grace, by His marvelous grace, we can see clearly.

Even more, His ever-safe cross is our safety key, for His triumphant victory sets us free from each call and each dare against us. Unto the ages of ages, His plans declare a perfect beauty:

There is no fear in love

“Whosoever shall confess that Jesus is the Son of God, God dwells in him, and he in God. And we have known and believed the love that God has to us. God is love; and he that dwells in love dwells in God, and God in him.” 1 John 4:15-16

There is no fear in God

For God has not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind. For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, ‘Abba, Father.’

The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God…If so be that we suffer with Him, that we may be also glorified together…be not thou therefore ashamed of the testimony of our Lord.

But be thou partaker of the afflictions of the gospel according to the power of God; Who has saved us…now made manifest by the appearing of our Saviour Jesus Christ, Who has abolished death and has brought life and immortality.

Romans 8:15-17 mixed with 2 Timothy 1:7-10 KJV

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“There is no fear in love.” 1 John 4:18 KJV

 

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Faith String Holding | Transformed by God’s Power

August 8, 2016 - Author: Bernadette Saddik

“And when they were come into the ship, the wind ceased.” Matthew 14:32 KJV

Adventuring along the narrow path,
I run into a roadblock obscuring the way.
Here I am, stuck…
with a string.

This string of faith
(beat up and knotted)
(what else am I supposed to do
with anxious thinking hands?)

“But when he [Peter] saw the wind boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink, he cried, saying, ‘Lord, save me.’” Matthew 14:30 KJV

Even worn, this God-gifted faith string radiates power.
“Lord, save me!” I cry, having nothing left to do but to
bind that roadblock with my gnarled string,
heaving and praying with all my frail might.

As I hear it strain, the string stretches taunt,
but it holds as each doubt-chased moment passes.
Steady hands wrap around my failing own.
Then the mountain moves.

“And immediately Jesus stretched forth His hand, and caught him, and said unto him, ‘O thou of little faith, wherefore didst thou doubt?’” Matthew 14:31 KJV

Yet another after another, roadblocks appear.
I grow weary in this journey.
My nerves and string are frayed.
There is nothing left to do but to close my eyes and pray.

Tied for the strangest thing about this string…
is when I look away from the wreckage…
God transforms those frayed ends.
And when I look back…

The string and I are both stronger than before.

“And He said, ‘Come.’ And when Peter was come down out of the ship, he walked on the water, to go to Jesus.” Matthew 14:29 KJV

Matthew 14:29 KJV

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Thought Castle | Home in Christ’s Love

February 1, 2016 - Author: Bernadette Saddik

“But when [the son] was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him…the father said to his servants…’let us eat, and be merry: for this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found.'” Luke 15:20, 24 KJV

Ease your frantic scrambling in that
ever-expanding thought castle.
(your ideas, plans, and dreams are
its tiles, bricks, and beams)

Yes, you are a castle keeper,
though not its only one.
No more than a child is keeper
of her safety, of her growing.

Tend to your thought castle,
but release the in charge-control-alone-illusion.
A keeper is no good lost.
(and there is much you still don’t realize)

Because how easily otherwise it is to
fall from not-yet opportunity walls,
drown in contrived joy moats,
burn in misunderstood hope dungeons.

You know this, because you have,
in consuming panicked-purpose fear,
slammed the door in Father’s face.
(deadlines looming, no time for Word-breathing Love)

Then you crumble,
and everything caves in,
and you don’t know where or who you are,
and that frantic energy is ready to explode.

You’ve locked yourself inside,
stuck with heart-barred windows.
This wondrous thought castle of possibility,
distorted into an angry, lonely room.

Yet, He Who came in a stable, Luke 2:4-7
Who left hanging on a tree, Luke 23:20-49
Who came back from a tomb, Luke 24:1-30
Who is risen unto Paradise… Luke 24:49-53

He has the key,
You have the need (cry out to Him!),
He has His open arms (what grace!).
Finally, in your castle, you see Home.

You, an inheritor, learning from the King, explore…
Walls reveal doors.
Moats uncover treasure coves.
Dungeons turn to passage ways.

For now, though, you have tired yourself.
Today, let Shepherd carry you up top —
up steep faith-stairs —
and rest in a high safe tower.

Rest in awe of that glorious resurrection view,
In awe of Christ’s glory.
Child, rest in awe.
Rest in peace-filled awe.

“His work is honourable and glorious: and His righteousness endureth forever. He hath made His wonderful works to be remembered: the LORD is gracious and full of compassion.” Psalm 111:3-4 KJV

“The Lord preserveth the simple: I was brought low, and He helped me. Return unto thy rest, O my soul; for the Lord hath dealt bountifully with thee.” Psalm 116:6-7 KJV

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Swirling Hope Spheres | Immersed in God’s Grace

December 22, 2015 - Author: Bernadette Saddik

“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to His abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead…” 1 Peter 1:3 KJV

“By Whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; and patience, experience; and experience, hope…” Romans 5:2-4 KJV

I peer through the darkness.
Can’t see my hands in front of my face.
So frustrated.
So terrified.
Then I hear a whisper, calm, full of love,
nudging me, “My child, just open your eyes.”

There cupped in my hands,
bright swirls of hope, sphered.
(light beams create a path)
I cradle it.
Cradle it dear.
A perfect present from a perfect Father.

Too scared to let go or damage or destroy
this fragile-looking gift,
I stand perfectly still.
Cradling it.
Protecting it.
No harm shall I let come its way.

Then the earth shakes,
shakes a little more.
I can barely stand.
I have to take a step,
threaten my hope in the
unquantifiable movement of escape.

And worse, this hope threatens to fall,
and shatter.
I resist, I refuse to let go.
Why would God send this hope,
and let it shatter?
And so let me shatter?

Despite all the focus, the care
to keep that precious sphere
from falling, from breaking,
we shatter as the earth shakes.
It ruptures open.
Where am I now?

I close my eyes.
So frustrated.
So terrified.
I’m lost.
Hope’s gone.
And we’re broken.

The bright swirls change,
released from their sphere.
And they grow with plumes of smoke,
consuming the earth all around,
disappearing in the jaws of former dreams.
If only I had pursued them before we fell.

I run and trip and fall and crawl.
So frustrated.
So terrified of this…monster.
It was hope.
Why would hope devour my reality?
Why does it blind me?

When I open my eyes, I still cannot see.
Every time I cry out for Shepherd,
it grows bigger, chases closer to me.
I can’t go on anymore.
One last heave of my legs and I’m done.
It wins.

I’m on fire.
I’m on ice.
I’m too empty, yet too full of
frustration
and terror,
still grasping for hands more reliable than my own.

And then suddenly I see.

I see farther.
More colour.
Beauty seeping into scars.
Light fragmented from embracing broken places.
I, no longer scared of the darkness in blinks.
Breathing in freed hope’s sweet air.

Standing straighter.
The ground beneath me no longer shakes.
And I know when it does — and it will —
I’ll run stronger, and braver.
Knowledge burning through my veins.
Confidence refreshing my bones.

My hands, not imprisoned by any sphere,
stretch out and I notice a mist fading as it
marks the way, colours the world in miracles…
the signature of a Saviour.
His hands guide my all-encompassing awakening,
smoky and scary only by my unbelief.

That perfect present from my perfect Father.
Hope not still.
Not fragile.
Always dynamic.
The quantifiable movement of purpose.
My purpose immersed in grace.

I am immersed in God’s grace.

Now our Lord Jesus Christ Himself, and God, even our Father, Which hath loved us, and hath given us everlasting consolation and good hope through grace, comfort your hearts, and stablish you in every good word and work.” 2 Thessalonians 2:16-17 KJV

“Grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To Him be glory both now and for ever. Amen.” 2 Peter 3:18 KJV

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To trust in the Lord…

March 27, 2015 - Author: Bernadette Saddik

Confusion and chaos everywhere. Still Your song plays clearly.
Is this how peace sounds, my Lord?
Calling, softly calling!
Nearer, My God, to Thee

“Yet the Lord will command His lovingkindness in the day time, and in the night His song shall be with me, and my prayer unto the God of my life.” Psalm 42:8 KJV

To trust in the Lord…
Pain searing and mind burning. Yet Your hold wraps me tenderly.
Is this how comfort feels, my Shepherd?
Cradling, gently cradling!
Softly and Tenderly

“Even there shall Thy hand lead me, and Thy right hand shall hold me. If I say, ‘Surely the darkness shall cover me;’ even the night shall be light about me.” Psalm 149:10-11 KJV

To trust in the Lord…
Bright lights and blurry faces. Then Your messengers appear.
Is this how mercy looks, my King?
Swift, oh so swift!
Great Is Thy Faithfulness

“The Lord hear thee in the day of trouble; the name of the God of Jacob defend thee; send thee help from the sanctuary, and strengthen thee out of Zion…” Psalm 20:1-2 KJV

To trust in the Lord…
Parched and sick and tired. But Your tears cleanse this wreck.
Is this how hope tastes, my Saviour?
Sweet, oh so sweet!
Be Still My Soul

“Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.” Psalm 51:7 KJV

Scared for a second, scared for a year. Nevertheless, fear roots not within.
For You, my God, shelter me.

You lift me in Your wings.
You tuck my spirit in the safety of Your love.
You protect me in all my ways.
Psalm 91

Heavenly Father, I come to You humbled and in awe at Your grace.

I Need Thee Every Hour.

Preserve me, O God: for in Thee do I put my trust.” Psalm 16:1 KJV

Psalm 16:1 KJV

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Jesus, You are my answer…

October 15, 2013 - Author: Bernadette Saddik

On the warm water, I need not worry about staying afloat. You hold me close, as a lamb to her Shepherd. You keep my head above water, sustaining me with the breath of life.

“But You, Lord, are a shield around me, my glory, the One who lifts my head high.” Psalm 3:3 NIV

Floating is hard work, especially when I fight Your hold. I am hungry, always hungry for more. But You fill with Your bread of life.

“And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to Me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on Me shall never thirst.” John 6:35 KJV

So much artistry in this glorious creation! As I rest in Your arms, You free me to see dawn’s streaks of colour. The sparkling jewel that is the ocean. The shimmering fish scales from the passing school.

“He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end.” Ecclesiastes 3:11 NIV

I close my eyes now, and feel Your healing touch. Every fiber of my being relaxes from the rolling waves of Your calming presence. Even in these moments of pain, I know You are healing me every second of every day. It is a matter of time. And meanwhile, You cradle me tenderly.

“Yes, my soul, find rest in God; my hope comes from Him.” Psalm 62:5 NIV
“O Lord my God, I cried unto Thee, and Thou hast healed me.” Psalm 30:2 KJV

Yes, Lord, I am happy. Happy because of Your overspilling love.
Yes Lord, I am joyful. Joyful because of Your beautiful grace.

“Though you have not seen Him, you love Him; and even though you do not see Him now, you believe in Him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy” 1 Peter 1:8 NIV

Thank You for always open arms.
Thank You for everlasting hope.
Thank You for forgiving us at our worst.
Thank You for loving us first and best.

“This is how God showed His love among us: He sent His one and only Son into the world that we might live through Him…We love because He first loved us.” 1 John 4:9, 19 NIV

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To Hear His Voice…

July 9, 2013 - Author: Bernadette Saddik

The sweetness of His voice! The gently crashing waves on the shore. Singing a poem, a song, a painting, a play.

To hear His voice…
All my troubles melt, even if just for a moment. A taste of heaven, a life with my heavenly Father. Calling, softly calling.

To hear His voice…
This isn’t forever. You hear that, pain? This isn’t forever!

To hear His voice…
Calm, my mind in turmoil. Peace, this is the gift of life. Marking the departure from confusion.

To hear His voice…
One day at a time. Lulling a hymn in my ears as I work, broken. Making me whole with His notes.

To hear His voice…
Cry, little one. Scream in ugly rage, if you want. But listen, listen.

To hear His voice…
Say goodbye to the anger. To the notes off-key. Listen, listen, to the beautiful melody.

To hear His voice…
Hello to a life remade. Bearing the lessons of the scars of old. Bearing the joy of new.

To hear His voice…
A gift from above. Lord, let me hear Your voice! Let me hear the heartbeat of strength, the pulse of victory, the breath of life!

“Hearken unto the voice of my cry, my King, and my God: for unto Thee will I pray. My voice shalt Thou hear in the morning, O Lord; in the morning will I direct my prayer unto Thee, and will look up.” Psalm 5:2-3 KJV

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My Shelter, carry me

March 6, 2013 - Author: Bernadette Saddik

Some days you feel trapped inside your body and you get so frustrated that you want rip your hair out by the roots and unravel your nerves. You have a burning desire to beat every fiber of your being that hurts into behaving the way you want.

The pain becomes overwhelming. You can’t breathe. And you, flawed, tired, weak, and worn, build a cage for the illusion of protection. But, you haven’t the will to do anything else, much less push back.

So, the disheartening pain shoves you further into your prison, making the cage smaller and smaller until you are caught. There is nowhere else to go. There seems to be no hope, no way out.

Swelling inside you is the urge to kick, shout, scream, cry. You wish that in one swift blow, you could transfer that cruel pain to your chair, or wall, or any object you can get your hands on.

This is not the way to treat the body God gave us. This is not the way for a child of God to think, or His image to act.

Within a gasp, the blink of an eye, a heartbeat, you can have the space of the universe, a comfort for eternity, a hand to hold you for all ages.

You can answer Christ’s knock.

No need to spend extra resources calling Him. He is already there.

He is the shield and light Who effaces the tyrannical darkness and places you on the path of salvation. His abundant strength pulls you from your agonized curl and stands you tall, leading you to green pastures.

What joy He instills that keeps you persevering. I can do nothing good without God, yet with Him, in Him, because of Him, I can withstand anything.

Such peace is a priceless treasure, such love ever-lasting.

Some days it’s easy to acknowledge God is in control. We don’t fight Him as much. We’re open to what He says and know how to follow through on it. Other days, though…they can be tough.

We get scared to relinquish control because we wrongly feel it is all we have left. Yet, when that weight inevitably hinders every breath, we must remember God, Who asks us to let Him steer our lives.

He does not want any of His children to suffer. Yet bad things happen. We live in a world marred by sin. But, God can and will and does carry our burden. He works everything for the good of those who love Him.

All we have to do is embrace His arms that are ready to be our refuge, our shelter.

“He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in Him will I trust.” Psalm 91:1-2 KJV

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Life doesn’t turn like the pages of a book…

February 19, 2013 - Author: Bernadette Saddik

Not the kind of book we imagine.
It is a work of art the Father brilliantly creates.
It is a stunning blueprint, a gorgeous picture, an awesome performance.

So let us pray that our will is God’s will, and bring forth beautiful light in the darkness of this world.

Yes, darkness will come. But in His mercy, He blesses us through that. Each moment is either bright, or it is not, in which case the light seems brighter.

When we fall, rising makes us closer to the Shepherd, as He gently lifts us and holds us nearer. Not only so…

He takes every arrow evil throws at us and turns it around a hundred times.

Evil may be a near infinite power, but God is infinite, and He, with His flock, prevails in His masterpiece plan.

But even with His kindness, I sometimes still feel so very broken, not at all marvelous. Then, He lovingly reminds me that…

Courage, true courage, is the courage to say, “I am weak.” That
Bravery, true bravery is to ask for help.
Wisdom, to accept that help. And
Knowledge, to know that it is not by my power.

Isn’t that a relief?

“Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:4-7 NIV

Courage, Bravery, Wisdom, Knowledge

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May your day be brighter, if not better…

February 10, 2013 - Author: Bernadette Saddik

For each moment of light casts away the shadows.

Those inevitable demons make the light so much sweeter. They try to take us down, only for God to raise us up again.

Remember the time when you cried out, “God, grant me some good!”? Today He fulfills that promise.

Think of the miracle of each passing breath. Is there not reason, then to sing praise to our Heavenly Father in the night, even in our most despaired hour?

Yet, when this is not possible, for you and I are only human, think of the candle. Let not sorrow’s phantoms overpower you. My child, God offers, partake of my Bread and be lit with the glory of resurrection.

Look to a new day.

Reflect on a time in your life, any time in your life, when you smiled at the kindness of a child, or laughed at the curious bark of a dog. At some point, God has granted us all at least once the memory of His grace. Cling to this dearly when you enter the dreary caves of sadness.

God is merciful. When we are low, seek His presence in the deepest trenches of the ocean. When we are ecstatic, remember His presence in the highest mountaintops.

He is always. Thus joy is always. When happiness cannot be attained, know that joy can. Joy in His love for us. Joy in salvation. Joy in the hope for a better day.

But for now, may your day be brighter, if not better.

You might find that a glimmer of light lifts, perhaps just a little, the day’s troubles.

“But I trust in Your unfailing love; my heart rejoices in Your salvation. I will sing the Lord’s praise for He has been good to me.” -Psalm 13:5-6 NIV

 

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When in the dark I pray,

January 21, 2013 - Author: Bernadette Saddik

An endless horizon of the surf meets the sky. As I look up, I see the stars proclaim God’s majesty.
…..I see an enduring Fortress.
…..I see His infinite love for me.
In His creation He shows me His breath-taking splendor. In His mercy, the Father reveals that what I comprehend now is only a sliver of His grandeur.
…..It is more magnificent than my heart can fathom.
By His grace, the Spirit stirs within me, granting me a taste of His satiating tranquility.

My eyes glaze over the silhouette of the tamed tide.
In the caressing ocean breeze, His hand brushes away the hot streams on my cheeks. In the swirling winds He hugs me close.
…..He tells me of His love, that He will never let go.

How can the sheep drown when the Shepherd carries her?

I dig my face in His open shoulders, screaming in rage and frustration, my mind lost in the chaos.
He comforts me with the assurance of a time with neither grief nor guilt, neither embarrassment nor agony.
…..There will be no knives, shots, shocks, throbs.
I will jump in dance without crackling lightning.  I will, with untiring voice, sing loud songs of praise without crumpling in piercing pain.

But for now, He reminds me that every time I fall, no matter how hard, it is always on His hand from which He gently lifts me.
He does not want His children to hurt. Yet, this is the course of life here, the consequence of sin, the battle against evil.
…..Out of it, He promises to teach me closeness to Him that I may approach nearer His full measure; to guide me in helping others that they may suffer less; to strengthen my spirit that my body will not defeat me.

This undertaking, He guarantees, is not nor will ever be in vain.

On the cross, Christ gladly bore the pressing weight of all my tears.
With His victory over death, He inspires faith, hope, joy that each drop brings me one step closer to eternal bliss.
…..In the meantime, every stab needs not be hauled by me. In fact, I am weak and capable of nothing without God–only by His power is this burden overcome.

God urges me to open my heart to Him.
…..He resonates with the sensibilities of my soul as He declares that He is the Voice which rebukes the sea, and it fearfully obeys. He clothes the withering grass and feeds the fleeting sparrow.

My child, He pleads, follow Me and know how much more I will use My power to love, to grow, and to protect you.

I breathe deeply as His whisper immerses me in peace.

I listen to my Lord’s sweet song from the lumbering waves lulling my soul to everlasting serenity.

“Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise Him, my Saviour and my God.” Psalm 42:11 NIV

 

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