Monday, September 30, 2013

Song of the Day... "Victory Shall Be Mine"

Just a couple of weeks ago I was driving through town *singing*

If I hold my peace
let the Lord fight my battles
victory, victory shall be mine 

It was a new twist
to an old favorite
and it carried me all through that week...

I recorded it on my phone the following Monday to share with friends
then had technical difficulties...

I re-recorded it that Wednesday on my camera to share with family
then we suddenly lost a loved one...

Everything was put on hold as we took time to...

grieve
and
celebrate 

a life

lived
and
loved

And during that moment of pause I was reminded of human

frailty
strength
resilience

and the song continued to carry me

If I hold my peace
let the Lord fight my battles
victory, victory shall be mine

Then I gained fresh perspective one day as I read about
Moses' encounter with God at the burning bush

God spoke
Moses questioned

God clarified
Moses doubted

God reassured
Moses worried

Finally fed up, God asked

"What is that in your hand?  Use that."

And I heard Moses begin to sing...

If I hold my piece
let the Lord fight my battles
victory, victory shall be mine

I had to laugh out loud as I shared
my discovery with my cousin, the lawyer,
who knows all too well about fighting and winning battles

because

there are times to "hold your peace"

and then

there are times to "hold your piece"

and as

I read
I remembered

that Moses used that same rod many times to

glorify God
perform miracles
bring victory

and just when he thought that his enemy had him cornered 
he cried out to God again and God responded

Why are you crying to me?
I told you to use what you have in your hand!

Well, in this life we face many enemies, and must constantly learn and relearn
how to use what God has given us to conquer them...

Thoughts of doubt and insecurity?
 Trust in the Lord with all your heart... Proverbs 3:5

Thoughts of anxiety and uncertainty?
Cast all of your cares on Him... 1 Peter 5:7 

Thoughts of fear and depression?
God has not given us the spirit of fear... 2 Timothy 1:7 

So go ahead and pick up

your weapon
your Word

for your warfare

and learn how to
hold your peace /"hold your piece"

all the way to victory!

Check out a snippet of the song below...


"Victory Shall Be Mine"


video

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

I Got a "New" Black Dress... and it Cost $2!

When our local thrift store hosted an "end of season" $2 sale,
I went to see what I could find for the kids
 
Although shopping for myself had not been in the initial plan,
I somehow still managed to end up in the dresses section,
where lo, and behold, what did I find?
 
A new black dress!

I snatched it off of the rack, pulled out two dollars,
and began putting my new black dress to work!



 
And of course we can't forget my same black dress...
 
worn with a crisp white blouse and blazer
 
paired with a skirt and a jean jacket

 
 
and dressed down with leggings and sandals for a comfy casual look


With weather cooling, Fall Fashions should be coming soon!

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Detangle With Care

We had found our way back to hair sessions, life lessons...

long play days
summer swimming and
daily neglect

(coily twists added to the mix)

the combination
that had my daughter's hair almost permanently loc'ed

I had twisted it before I left town on business, only to return wondering...

How did you manage to get this tangled?


come have a seat...
bow your head...
trust me...

as I moisturize and gently run my fingers through your hair
detangling with care

feeling each knot
and acknowledging it
causing it to slip out with minimal effort

saving almost all of the hair

(knowing that what refused to surrender to my gentle prod was already)

dead
shed
and needed to be placed to the side to be discarded

I'm finding that life is almost just like that at times

I have some knots refusing to surrender...

so I must be willing to have them removed and placed to the side

long work days
summer recreation and
daily responsibilities

(life's twists added to the mix)

the combination conspiring to permanently lock me into a situation
that I thought I had under wraps, only to look up and wonder...

How did I manage to get this tangled?

So I go back to what I've learned

take a seat...
bow my head...
trust as God moisturizes

allowing His hand to gently sweep over me

as He detangles with care

Next hair lesson... The Hair Dance

Thursday, September 12, 2013

These Hands

These hands belong to a girl
who likes to paint her fingernails...


One day while watching me clean the house she asked,
"What are you about to do now mommy?"

and my inner Martha answered without even turning to look at her

finish dinner
wash the dishes and
fold the laundry that is on the bed

and when she disappeared for a while, and all was quiet
I didn't think much of it

because I thought that she had gone to paint her fingernails... yet again

Then moments later she came back and said,

"All finished, come see"

and although I didn't know what she was talking about
I followed her upstairs to find...

small piles of

freshly laundered clothes
neatly folded and
sitting nicely on the bed

She said...

"I folded the towels too, and put them in the hall closet. 
Now after dinner, you can just sit down with me."

I marvel at how this nine-year old-child is already learning to balance her inner Mary/Martha


because
 
These hands belong to a girl
who likes to paint fingernails...

and help fold laundry

And my prayer is that God continuously...

blesses
anoints
and always holds

these hands

(...and see what else these hands have been up to!)

Monday, September 9, 2013

Discovering Destiny... in the Dead Sea

When our little cousin Destiny shared her experiences from Israel, I was enthralled

I remember when she was still a child
with that same beautiful smile

and seeing her now
hearing her now
appreciating the beautiful woman

she has become
will become
is becoming

wells up more feelings of gratitude

Only God could travel with someone to the "lowest point on earth"
to show them the highness of the position to which He has called them

What an amazing work He

has done
will do
is doing

and it makes me smile at the irony of

finding purpose and
discovering destiny in the Dead Sea 

She writes...

Out of all the things I’ve seen in my lifetime, the Dead Sea has got to be one of the most beautiful sites I have ever encountered. At its first glance I doubted it as a reality, but the more I gazed at it, the heavier my heart was.
 
All I could think of was how amazing of a creator our God is.
 
The Dead Sea is the lowest part of the earth;
 
a little over 1,300 feet below sea level and is a sea full of salt that allows you to literally float without effort.
 
As I floated in the water I asked God, “Why me Lord?”
 
Little old me: Destiny Dixon.
 
All I am is a mere testimony who acknowledges that it is only by God’s grace that my “Why me Lord?” question is not one conceived in confusion, depression, agony, or hatred.

Although it once was,
it now flows from sincere gratitude.
 
Why do you continue to bless me?
 
In such a vast world, God thought enough about me to wipe away every tear, remove doubt, break chains and strongholds, erase bitterness, and then bless me exceedingly and abundantly. In his grand creation, he looked past my imperfections, and decided to show me how much he loves me; this he does every single day.
 
Little old me.
 
The lowest point on earth may be ordinary to some,
but it is extraordinary to me.
 
Why you ask?
 
Because…
 
“When I consider Your heavens, the work of Your fingers, the moon and the stars, which You have set in place, what is man that You are mindful of him, the son of man that You care for him?”
 
–Psalms 8:3-4

(post reprinted with permission)

Friday, September 6, 2013

Back to School Blues

I could feel it in the air...

restlessness
anxiousness
excitement

and

nervousness

A serious case of the "Back to School Blues"

We'd been preparing for weeks...

school uniforms
new shoes
notebooks and supplies


and yet it still managed to catch me off guard

It happens every year,
and I know why


a new watch  
a combination lock for a middle school locker

with
football added to the mix

and yet this is still not getting any easier

heart racing
mind roaming
house so quiet I can hear it moan

(realizing that it has the "back to school blues" too)

because
not so long ago there were children running around this place

and now it is...

so still

Five of my former childcare students also entered "big school" yesterday
and it was not any easier

Until today...

as I dropped the kids off at school, and saw one of those former students

backpack in tow

focused
determined
marching off to class

and asked...

"So how was your first day of kindergarten?"

He looked up at me with big brown eyes

and a smile that melts my heart every time
and said without hesitation...

"I survived"

and I knew

from that smile and
those words

that it was God

speaking
reminding
promising

that these

"Back to School Blues"

will
also
soon
fade...

First day of school for 6th grade and 4th grade

Monday, September 2, 2013

Leave Your Mark




He appeared small and insignificant
and we would have missed him altogether had he not left a mark;

a mark signifying the impression of his presence

It was early morning, and perhaps

no one had noticed
no one could see
no one even cared

But his mark was undeniable...

and even though we almost missed Him

He left a mark

an undeniable impression on our souls
(signifying His ever-presence)

His mark is undeniable
and reminded us as we left our house that morning (and saw this mark)

that no matter

how big
how small
how insignificant

we may appear to be

to this world...
in this world...

we should always... always... always remember to leave a mark