"The Lord Our Dwelling Place"

"He who dwells in the shelter of the most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.
I will say of the Lord, 'He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust."
Psalm 91:1-2
"Lord, you have been our dwelling place throughout all generations."
Psalm 90:1
"But now I come to You; and these things I speak in the world so that they may have My joy made full in themselves."
John 17:13
As I mentioned in my last post, Psalm 91 was on my mind all last weekend. As I prayed for the needs of others, as well as my own, God kept bringing the words of Psalm 91 back to my attention. Saturday morning, as I prayed for a particular need, God seemed to keep reminding me that our safe spot in time of trouble, and our oasis in time of confusion is not a *place*...it is Him. *He* is our refuge. He...not our home...is our dwelling place.
Sunday morning, as I pondered the events of the *wee hours*, I was hit by the awareness that
"If you make the Most High your dwelling--
Even the Lord, who is my refuge--
Then no harm will befall you,
no disaster will come near your tent."
I had decided while I was typing "No Disaster Will Come Near Your Tent" that I need to memorize Psalm 91. I need to daily meditate right now upon God as our refuge and dwelling place. I need to trust recognize and trust that in my own life, and I need to be praying it for others around me who are experiencing huge trials.
Then came church on Sunday morning. God continues to blow me away in the way that the music Lyndel plans and the words Bro. Kent brings always seem to be put there *just for me*, wherever I am at that point. And yet I know that there are others (and probably many more than I know) for whom they seem just as perfect and personal.
The choir sang a new-to-us chorus that has spoken *loudly* to me ever since we began learning it:
Bow the Knee
"Bow the knee;
Trust the heart of your Father when the answer goes beyond what you can see.
Bow the Knee;
Lift your eyes toward Heaven and believe the One who holds eternity.
And when you don't understand the purpose of His plan,
In the presence of the King,
Bow the knee."
~Chris Machen and Mike Harland
I was so struck by the meaning of those words. When our world turns upside down, when nothing about life makes sense, when God's answers to our prayers are nowhere near what we expected...our immediate response should be to "bow the knee". That is the answer. Worship--focusing on Who He is and responding in awe and obedience--is the key. Plain and simple. But how hard do we often make it, and how rarely do we actually practice it!
Those thoughts had been rolling around in my head for over a week as I've hummed that chorus. They came to mind again as we sang Sunday morning.
Then Bro. Kent began to preach. I won't type my notes in their entirety here...although it is tempting...but I'll attempt to summarize:
John 17:13
"The world in which we live is just messed up."
How are we to respond? With JOY.
Our joy doesn't come from the circumstances around us--God gives us joy even in the midst of a hostile world, even in the face of the greatest evil.
Definition of Joy: "Joy is the emotion of great delight or happiness caused by something exceptionally great or satisfying."
This joy is Christ Himself.
We don't feel joy because we kid ourselves that everything is okay when it really isn't. It isn't about pretending or putting on a happy face. Our only source of joy is Christ Himself...and that is COMPLETELY APART FROM CIRCUMSTANCES.
Our problem is that we focus on the bad stuff, the circumstances. WE HAVE TO GET OUR FOCUS BACK ON JESUS. How do we do this? Go around thinking about Jesus all the time? YES!
Memorize and meditate on Scripture. Think on it continually. Sticky-note verses everywhere so you will see them throughout the day!
Jesus' own prayer for us was that our "joy would be made full." It is His will. If we aren't experiencing it right now it is either because we are not His (not saved), or because our focus is on our circumstances and not on Jesus.
Col. 3:1-3
He will protect us from evil. "But bad things are happening to me, bad things have happened to my loved ones." "But...you are still a believer. You still have His forgiveness and approval." No one can pluck you out of His hand. No matter what happens to you, you are protected. There is great joy in knowing that you *are* protected...Satan cannot do anything to you without going through God first. (Job)
He protects us from defeat and despair and keeps our faith intact--and that is cause for joy! He has *promised* us joy. This joy is in our relationship with Him. Not in any other relationship, not in our circumstances, not in our job or our home or *anything else*...IN HIM.
When we get discouraged, we must get our focus back on Him. Sit down, open the Bible, and begin to read. Get in the Word, get our focus back on Him, and He has promised to restore our joy.
Well, so much for summarizing. ;-) I *didn't* type my notes in their *entirety*, but almost. :)
They were too good to leave anything out!
As I sat and listened Sunday morning, God seemed to tie together the whole lesson He's been teaching me on "The Lord Our Dwelling Place". A friend confirmed those thoughts later that day. Our safe place, our refuge, *is* in Him. And when He is our dwelling...when we are immersed in His Word and who He is...our focus is where it should be, rather than on our circumstances, and we WILL have joy.
One of the things I have realized I love about this study in the book of John is that much of it is *not* new...many of the verses are verses most of us can quote by heart, and many of the concepts are concepts we have heard all of our lives. And yet...God is using Bro. Kent's words and the circumstances in my life to make it new and fresh as though I am hearing it for the first time. I love the "light-bulb" or "Aha!" moments when a verse I can quote in my sleep suddenly comes alive in a whole new way as God says, "THIS is what I mean by this, and THIS is the answer to what you are struggling with right now!"
It is so simple, so basic...and yet so hugely, amazingly powerful. "Bow the knee...Dwell in Him...And He will protect you and give you joy."
(Forgive the spacing issues once more, please. I have yet again attempted to fix the spacing on this post *4* times, and it WILL NOT WORK. Arrgghh. I'll try again in the morning.)


"No Disaster Will Come Near Your Tent"

If you make the Most High your dwelling—
even the LORD, who is my refuge-
then no harm will befall you,
no disaster will come near your tent.
For he will command his angels concerning you
to guard you in all your ways;
~Psalm 91:9-11

Psalm 91 has been on my mind and heart often this week. This song, and the psalm itself, have played through my head over and over, as they have applied to so many aspects of our lives right now.

There is no doubt in my mind that there were angels guarding our back door last night, so that no harm befell us and no disaster came near our tent.

One of our children was having trouble sleeping, so she was in our bed, with me, and Billy was sleeping peacefully on the sofa. I had been asleep for a couple of hours when Billy came into the bedroom and said, "Is everybody okay?" It had been an exhausting day, and I was *sound* asleep, but the tone of his voice woke me up instantly. "What? Why? What's wrong?"

His answer chilled me to the bone.

"I'm just checking on everything, because I woke up and the back door was wide open."

*Gulp* "Umm...the inside back door, or the outside back door?"

(There is a small screened in porch on the back of our house. The door that goes from the porch to the back yard is known as "the outside back door", and the door that goes from the kitchen to the screened in porch is known as "the inside back door". I have often thought we really should come up with some more creative...and shorter...names for these doors, as we refer to them what seems like several hundred times a day, and it gets cumbersome. In the split second it took Billy to answer my question, I was trying to quickly analyze which one would be the worse answer.)


(I hadn't decided yet which would be the worse of the two to find open at 1 a.m., but "both" was worse than bad, it was terrifying.)

I have to stop at this point and explain a couple of things. First...we don't live in the world's best neighborhood. Not that any place in our large town/small city (depending on who you're talking to ;-)) is exactly Mayberry...I can't think of a neighborhood in town in which I would leave my doors unlocked at night. But one of the *cons* of buying my grandparents' 60+ year old house 11 years ago was that the neighborhood had been on somewhat of an *upswing*, but we knew it was possible that that wouldn't last and it would head downward instead of upward. And sure enough, a few years after we moved here, the latter happened. It's more annoying than dangerous, but there are some shady characters that walk the streets some nights.

Second...we have two children who are sleepwalkers. Just last week, Billy had said to me that he was really concerned about the combination of Peter's age/growth, his bedroom being in the *back* of the house, and his sleepwalking seeming to get worse instead of better recently. He had decided that next week when he is on vacation, he was going to put an additional lock on the back door, "just in case" Peter should ever try to go out it in the night. (The front door has a keyed deadbolt, and is right next to our bedroom, so it wasn't such a worry.)

At the time, I really didn't think an additional lock on the back door was all that necessary, but if it would make Billy feel better, it was fine with me. My thought was that there are four locks on the two doors to the back yard, plus a doorknob that is hard for me to maneuver when I'm fully awake, so I wasn't too worried about Peter heading out in his sleep. BUT...knowing Billy's own history with sleepwalking (his mom can tell some eye-opening stories!), I deferred to his judgement, said, "sounds good", and didn't give it another thought.

Until last night. At 1:00 a.m. When Billy said, "Both."

"They were both standing wide open. I've checked everything, and it all looks okay. The kids are all asleep and I don't see any sign of anyone being in the house."

Wide open?? Now, to get the full effect of that statement, you have to realize that we live on a corner lot. And due to various changes to our property recently, when our back doors are open, you can see straight into our kitchen from a ways down the block. It would be very obvious to anyone walking or driving by that you could walk right in with no obstructions.

And people walk and drive down that side street *all night long*.

Most of them probably fine, upstanding citizens, who wouldn't dream of walking into someone's house uninvited, wide-open doors or not.

*Most* being the key word there.

We finally pieced together that Darcy (who sleeps in Peter's room), had woken up at some point and Peter, in his sleep, had either put her out or tried to. (When Billy woke me up, Darcy was in my bed, where she is NOT supposed to be, so apparently she had been roaming the house unattended at some point.) Darcy can get the inside screen door open from outside on her own if the other two doors are open, which was probably actually the noise that woke Billy up and caused him to go investigate.

We have no idea how much time had passed with the doors open, as Peter was sound asleep when we tried to question him about what had happened. Of course, he had no recollection at all of what he might have done while sleepwalking, so he wasn't much help anyway. We do know that Darcy was burrowed under my blanket when we found her, sound asleep, so it had been more than just a few minutes (my bed would *not* be the first place she would head upon coming into the house unattended.)

Poor Billy. Even with the terror-induced adrenalin surge, I was having trouble staying awake. (It had been a *really* long day and I was tireder than I had been in a *long* time.) After I got up to help him make sure everything in the house was secure, I crawled back in bed and forced myself to stay semi-alert long enough to hear Billy's plan. We couldn't really come up with a good way to insure that Peter wouldn't open the back doors *again* without our hearing him (although we knew the chances of that were slim at that point), so Billy decided he was going to have to stay awake the rest of the night, and then stay home from church and sleep while the rest of us were gone. As soon as lunch is over, he will be headed to the hardware store to get another lock for the back door.

I was telling someone the other day that one of the lessons God has taught me in recent years is that no matter *how* protective and careful I am as a parent, I *cannot* protect my children from all harm. Only God can do that. I am thankful that the reverse of that is true as well....that when we are, for whatever reason, the human equivalent of *sitting ducks*--doors wide open to whatever evil lurks just outside, and completely oblivious to the danger at hand--God is our dwelling and our refuge. He does give His angels charge over us, so that no disaster befalls our tent (or 75 year old house, in this case!)

It gives yet another meaning to being "held in the palm of His hand". Even when our physical refuge is stripped from us, He promises us that HE will be our refuge, if we make Him our dwelling place.

He keeps reminding me of that.

I am thankful. Again.


"That Which is Holy"

I mentioned a few weeks ago (in this Daybook post) that I am thankful for parents who taught me "reverence for that which is holy". From a young age, I was easily offended at anything that had the remotest appearance of being irreverent. I remember learning 1 Peter 1:16 very early...

"Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy."

I am thankful for that training and grounding in God's Word. Like so many things I learned as a child, however, this has been a concept that God has been "growing me up in" recently...taking it from the devotional lessons learned as a child and translating it into grown-up faith. In that same Daybook post, I mentioned being thankful

"For a pastor who loves God's Word and holds it in highest esteem, and who preaches the Word solidly, verse-by-verse, without apology..."


"For a minister of music who is committed to worship rather than entertainment, and who pushes us to excel musically for the Glory of God..."

I am so thankful for the way both of these proclaim and uphold the holiness of God, and for the commitment both have to "keeping holy that which is holy". Week after week as Bro. Kent preaches verse by verse in John on Sunday morning, and Revelation on Sunday nights, those early lessons in reverence and God's holiness are deepened and nailed down with solid doctrinal truth. And week after week as we try to make sense of the circumstances surrounding us, God "works it out" in us as He takes that teaching and makes it "real life", and causes it to take root deep inside of us and become part of who we are in Him. As I've blogged before ( here and here, among other places) about God's sovereignty and goodness, His holiness has become even more real and more precious through the events of the last few years.

I've pondered that a great deal recently, as God has *bombarded* me with this topic. I think my awareness of where God has brought me in this area began with a series of conversations friends and I had about a popular book we had decided to read. I knew from reading exerpts of the book that I had some real concerns about it, although I had been told that it was "life-changing" and a "must read". I read a few other exerpts, and some reviews, and realized that I was not going to agree with the author about his treatment of this topic of the holiness of God (among other things), despite the fact that he is a professed Christian and this is supposedly a Christian book. However, I still planned to read the book, having heard that there was much else in it that was good. I would be on my guard for that which was false, and pull out the nuggets of that which was good and profitable.

Then a friend called. "I cannot finish this book. I have gone as far as I can go and I can't read any further." I could tell by the tone of her voice that she was seriously disturbed by what she had read. As she began to read to me from the book, I began to feel almost physically ill. When she finished reading, I said, "That's enough. That's all I need to hear. I can't read this book."

While I understood...I think...what the author was trying to do in the pages my friend had read, the lack of reverence for the holiness and glory of the God who created the universe with His Word was like a hard punch in the stomach and a vile taste in my mouth all at once. "He's trying to put God on our level..." we said more than once during our conversation. As I discussed the book further with another friend, with whom I had planned to read and discuss the book, we talked about the fact that we couldn't get past the offensiveness of the "commonness" with which God was portrayed. I shared that I had decided that at least at this time in my life, I am simply not up to reading something that is so out of alignment with the holiness of God that has become such a deeply precious and awesome thing to me. Perhaps someday...but not now.

Almost immediately after those conversations took place, Bro. Kent made this statement:

"Profanity is treating anything that is holy as though it is common or worthless."

I suddenly realized that that was what concerned me...and my friends...about the book we had been discussing...and what concerns me about so many things in the world, and even the church...today. It came across to me as treating something that is holy...God, the Holy Trinity...as though it is common...a buddy, "the man upstairs", someone just like us. While I have always loved the hymn "What a Friend We Have in Jesus", the "friendship" of Jesus of which it speaks is much different than a buddy relationship. I firmly believe that it is not only possible, but necessary, to have an intimate, personal relationship with Him without ever losing sight of His holiness, majesty, and glory, which set the Creator apart from His created beings.

Recently we began learning a new chorus in choir...

The sun cannot compare to the glory of Your love
There is no shadow in Your Presence
No mortal man would dare to stand before Your throne
Before the Holy One of heaven
It's only by Your Blood and it's only through Your mercy
Lord I come

I bring an offering of worship to my King
No one on earth deserves the praises that I sing
Jesus may You receive the honor that You're due
O Lord I bring an offering to You
I bring an offering to You

~Paul Baloche

I was so struck by those words.

"No mortal man would dare to stand before your throne....
It's only by Your Blood, and it's only through Your Mercy..."

How I need to remember that. When I start to become too casual about the way I approach God, too comfortable in His grace, and too cavalier about His forgiveness, I must remember that it is only by His blood and only through His mercy that I am able to come into His presence. Only because when He looks at me, He doesn't see my sinful self, but the righteousness of Jesus, am I not struck down.

May He make me more continually aware of His holiness and ever watchful of my reverence. And may I diligently follow in the heritage I've been blessed with in instilling reverence for His holiness in my children, all the while praying that He will "grow up" those lessons in them someday as well.

ETA: I have made *four* attempts to correct the spacing in this post. Blogger has apparently joined with Firefox today in an attempt to destroy what little sanity I have left. No matter what I do, I *cannot* make Blogger space between paragraphs like I tell it to do. As this post had already taken twice as long to write as I had planned, I am giving up on the spacing issues until tomorrow, with apologies to anyone who tries to wade through in the meantime. *sigh*


Mercy Week

This week is Mercy Week at St. Ed's. Last night was Family Night for employees and their families...an outdoor movie and snacks. We had a blast sprawled out on our blankets in the dark in front of the giant inflatable movie screen eating cotton candy. :)

The cotton candy only *looks* like it is stuck in Em's hair...Bay was lying on the blanket behind her with her cotton candy sticking up in the air. ;-)

Gracie was a bit overwhelmed for a while...
Silly girls...
I kept trying to get pictures of Peter, and he kept maneuvering where all I could get was the back of his head. Argh!

See? I have a whole slew of variations on this shot. :-D
The big screen...we decided it looked like a huge upended trampoline. :)

I took this while Emlyn was lying in my lap...I was playing with the nighttime settings on the camera. ;-)
A fun, relaxing family night!

National Historic Site Field Trip

Last Friday we toured the Fort Smith National Historic Site/Judge Parker's Court. We'd been before (several times), but the improvements they've made since the last time we were there were really impressive.

Our tour guide was great. He is a senior historical interpretation major at UAFS, and you can tell he loves what he does. (Interesting Note: Apparently Tom Wing is the reason he is doing what he is doing...he said that he attended a field trip at the Historic Site when he was in the 6th or 7th grade and when he saw Tom shooting the cannon, he thought "Wow, what a neat job that would be!" :))

Some of these photos are less than the best...I was more focused on keeping up with everyone than getting *perfect* shots. :)

Bay and Kaitlyn...
The old jail, downstairs. Our tour guide did an excellent job of describing the horrid conditions in this jail, which earned it the nickname "Hell on the Border".

Sweet sisters listening...:)
The "newer" jail, upstairs. It was a vast improvement over the old jail, with actual "cells" and a mechanism for dealing with "waste". The cutways and displays in this area are really cool!

The "new and improved waste disposal system"...this door opened to reveal a pull out chamber pot. There was a special flue system which helped keep the smell down, compared to the old jail with its open, exposed buckets. The kids were fascinated by this. :)

Next was Judge Parker's courtroom. It has been beautifully restored, and with my love of all things judicial, it was my favorite part. :) The kids really enjoyed sitting at the various desks and hamming it up. ;-)

Peter at the clerk's desk...
I wish this had turned out better....Emlyn "on the bench".
"Judge Josh" with the gavel...
Emlyn and Braylin sharing the judge's seat...
Group shot...
Peter at one of the displays...
View from the window...Flag over the Fort...Silly kids...

This is part of a huge blown up photo which hangs over the staircase going up to the new jail. "Bill" is an outlaw who was eventually hanged. The men with the numbered hats are marshalls. Can you tell where Bill's right arm is in the photo? According to the story our tour guide told us, Bill said after this photo was taken that he had his arm around deputy number 4 and "almost" had his gun out of his holster. The photographer took the shot just in time to save the lives of the marshalls and who knows how many others. Notice the smirk on Bill's face?
The cannon...
Josh had his bug catcher and looked for bugs every chance he got. He and Peter finally found one!
The gallows...
Another great trip! Thanks, Kim!! :)


Simple Woman's Daybook

For Today...
September 22, 2008
First Day of Fall!!

Outside my Window...
Sunshine and the promise of crisp, cool fall days to come.

I am thinking...
pondering another great blog post by Jules... My Failures, His Mercy. I've printed it out to re-read and think on this week.

From the learning rooms...
Nothing fancy or exciting this week...just a solid, steady week of school, after a week full of interruptions last week, and in anticipation of Dad being on vacation next week. (yay!!)

I am thankful for...
a new week!

Billy's job and the flexibility it provides, which has been such a blessing so often during crazy days in the past few years.

Fall!! My favorite season...:)

time spent with some of my favorite teenagers recently, and the reminders that teens can be delightful creatures!

God's faithfulness, and His daily reminders that His mercies are new every morning...

that just *bless my socks off* ;-) in all kinds of ways!

As always, my husband and my children, who are the greatest earthly blessings God has given, and for whom I am more thankful every day.

From the kitchen...
I am trying to come up with a reason I need to make this cake...which I have heard is absolutely delectable! How could it not be, with this description...

a Sour Cream-Chocolate Cake with Cream Cheese Peanut Butter Frosting and Chocolate Peanut Butter Glaze"

Yum!! :-D

I am wearing...
Navy shorts and a navy print shirt.

I am reading...
As Unto the Lord... A Tool for Wives Who Want to Glorify God, by Pam Forster (Doorposts)

Treasures of Heaven in the Stuff of Earth, by Babbie Mason

The Pursuit of Holiness, by Jerry Bridges

and various others I've been working on for a while...:)

I am hoping...
for a very productive week this week,

for a really good week at work for Billy before he starts his vacation next week!

I am creating...
book lists for the children and I for the school year.

I am hearing...
a CD of the OCBC choir singing "Moses", by Ken Medema...which reminds me that although I have already blogged about this song here, there is another post coming on this song!

Around the house...
We accomplished a *lot* of cleaning, decluttering, and re-organizing last week. I hope to keep that momentum up this week in preparation for a painting marathon next week when Billy is off! :)

One of my favorite things...
an "out of the blue" email of encouragement from a friend...I got one last week that came at "just the time I needed it". I'm so thankful for friends who listen to God's promptings and bless me in so many ways!

A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week...
A fun surprise planned for the kids tomorrow night...

Great-Papa's 97th birthday Saturday, and a trip to the nursing home with the GAs...

Otherwise, last week's schedule was a bit busier than I had planned, so I'm hoping for a very *ordinary* week this week...school, church, co-op, chores, reading, rest, and celebrating fall.

Thanks to Peggy for hosting the Daybook each week!


Exactly What I Needed....

It was *just exactly* what I needed today, as we head into the last busy day of a long and difficult week.

This face....

...looking up at me and saying,

"Awww....You is my Best Mommy...
Me loves you SO much!"


"In the Palm of His Hand"

"If 'God would make manifest the fact that 'He giveth songs in the night', He must first make it night."
~William Taylor

I am thankful for the night, and for the songs He gives in it.
Tuesday morning I was pondering a quote I had read earlier in the day here. I had read another take on the quote here.

“Still, accepting God’s existence is one thing; honoring his command is another matter entirely, especially if we’re required to go back when we’d rather go forward.”
~Liz Curtis Higgs

As I pondered Tuesday morning, I thought, "It feels so good to finally be going forward when we have been 'going back', or 'standing still' for so long."

A few hours later, I re-entered the category of "going back" with a vengeance.

I wasn't ready. I didn't want to. I was far from happy about the circumstances we were suddenly in the midst of. My mind flashed back to this quote, and I began to pray that God would give grace and strength to honor and obey when what I really wanted to do was go back to bed and pull the blankets over my head until Christmas.

As I began praying, two things came to my mind, and lodged there for the next 36 hours. The first was the chorus to a song we have been singing in childr
en's choir this month:

"God will make a way
When there seems to be no way.
He works in ways we cannot see;
He will make a way for me.
He will be my guide,
Hold me closely to His side.
With love and strength for each new day,
He will make a way,
He will make a way."
~Don Moen

This song had been on my mind all week, not only because we have been working on it with the children on Wednesdays, but because of an anniversary that occurred on Saturday. Fifteen years ago, this song was part of a musical the adult choir was preparing at my church. I was stuck in traffic on Hwy. 71 at Huntington due to a tractor-trailer rig accident. I was dealing with extreme frustration because I knew the delay was going to make me late for choir rehearsal, and I needed to be there to prepare for the musical. As I sat and fumed, God began to give a very odd peace about the situation, and I settled back with my rehearsal cassette and music to practice on my own as I waited for the road to clear. I don't know how many times I played that tape over and over again, or how many times I sang this song while I sat there. And every time, I listened also to this story of Don Moen writing this song after his nephew was killed in a car accident.

God knew that afternoon that more than I needed to work parts and rhythms with the choir, I needed to be saturated with the scripture, songs, and testimony on that tape. I arrived home too late to even attempt rehearsal, only to discover that my dad and my best friend had been trying to reach me. While I was sitting on the road singing "God Will Make a Way" over and over again, our friend Andy was meeting Jesus face to face...the result of a tragic auto accident.

"God Will Make a Way" has been a favorite song of mine ever since. I remember singing it often, through tears, in the days and weeks after Andy's death. It is one of those that God has used many times since to remind me during other difficult times of the ways He worked during that time, and the ways He has worked during other dark days in the 15 years since.

And once again, God knew that I was going to need those words...and the reminders they bring...this week.

The other thing that God brought to mind almost instantly was this thought:

He will hold you in the palm of His hand.

I wasn't quite sure why, but that image has been on my mind often lately...God holding us in the palm of His hand. Throughout Tuesday and Wednesday, I kept repeating to myself, "He is holding us in the palm of His hand..." I talked to the kids about God holding us in His hand, and prayed that God would continue to remind us of that.

Then last night in choir practice (another one of those times I was so tired I wasn't sure how I was going to stay awake through rehearsal, but I knew I *needed* to...), we pulled out a song we've worked on off and on all summer. It's a beautiful song I've loved since we first sight-read it. I had even started to blog about it earlier in the summer...one of those blog posts I've just "never gotten around to". :)

When we got to the last line of the chorus, the tears started streaming as I realized the origin of the word picture I had clung to so tightly during the past 36 hours...

"And hold you in the palm of His hand."

On Eagle's Wings

"You who dwell in the shelter of the Lord,
Who abide in his shadow for life,
Say to the Lord,
'My refuge, my rock in Whom I trust

And He will raise you up on eagle's wings,
Bear you on the breath of dawn,
Make you to shine like the sun
And hold you in the palm of His hand.

The snare of the fowler will never capture you,
And famine will bring you no fear;
Under His wings your refuge,
His faithfulness your shield.

And He will raise you up on eagle's wings,
Bear you on the breath of dawn,
Make you to shine like the sun,

And hold you in the palm of His hand.

You need not fear the terror of the night,
Nor the arrow that flies by day;
Though thousands fall about you,
Near you it shall not come

 For to His angels He's given a command
To guard you in all of your ways;
Upon their hands they will bear you up,
Lest you dash your foot against a stone

And He will raise you up on eagle's wings,
Bear you on the breath of dawn,
Make you to shine like the sun
And hold you in the palm of His hand. "
~Michael Joncas
(based on Psalm 91)

I am so thankful, again, that He giveth songs in the night. I found the quote by William Taylor earlier this summer. What a light-bulb moment! How much more precious are the songs He gives because of the nights in which they were given...and how much more precious and awesome is the Giver of the songs because of the way He wraps us up in His love and peace and joy through them.


Please feel free to share this post (or any others here) with others.  It's easy with the share buttons below, or the Pin-It button above.  (The Pin-It button above is also an easy way for Pinterest users to save this post to come back to later!)
And to make sure you don't miss anything, be sure to sign up in the sidebar to receive new posts by email, or follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and/or Pinterest


Simple Woman's Daybook

For Today...
September 15, 2008

Outside my Window...
Darkness...I'm running behind!
Earlier today we had beautiful "touch of fall" weather that whet all our appetites for more!

I am thinking...
I am glad it's almost bedtime!

From the learning rooms...
*Loving* our new geography, A Child's Geography, by Ann Voskamp

I am thankful that...
the storms weren't any worse here this weekend,
we are all safe and healthy,
fall is almost here, and cooler weather is ahead!

From the kitchen...
trying a new peanut butter chocolate chip cookie recipe tomorrow...yummm!

I am wearing...
black tee and black and red shorts.

I am reading...
a biography of Charles Spurgeon,
and still reading bits and pieces of things I've been reading on for weeks. :)

I am hoping...
for uninterrupted sleep (when I finally get to bed :))
and a productive day tomorrow.

I am creating...
I haven't had a lot of creative days lately, but I am determined to change that this week. (I'll post progress later in the week, I hope. :))
I am hearing...
the silence of a house asleep, a few dogs barking in the distance.
Around the house...
playing catch up this week.

One of my favorite things...
climbing into bed at night just after I have turned the window unit on in the bedroom and snuggling into the comfort of a cozy bed as the cool air fills the room.

A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week...
An ordinary day at home tomorrow,
Church as usual Wednesday night,
Co-op starting on Thursday,
Field trip Friday,
and no major plans for the weekend yet. :)

Here is a picture thought I am sharing with you...
The kids in the tent they made for our first geography lesson. Have I mentioned that we are loving Ann Voskamp's A Child's Geography?? ;-)

Thanks to Peggy at The Simple Woman for hosting the Daybook each week!