Having Eyes That See (Life Lessons That Brought Me Closer to God)

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Favorite Biblical Lessons From "The Lion King"

It took almost two years, but last night
my children and I finally saw

"The Lion King" Musical! 

So imagine my surprise when I read today's verse of the day... 

Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walks about,
seeking whom he may devour: Whom resist steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same
afflictions are accomplished in your brethren that are in the world.

1 Peter 5:8-9

and I had to smile that this would be today's selected verse
and have decided to also share my favorite Biblical takeaways from "The Lion King"...

5. Turn your back on the world (1 John 2:15-17)

I grew up hearing...

"We are in the world, but not of the world
because this world is not our home"

we are only

strangers
pilgrims
sojourners

traveling through here

marching toward a greater

destiny
destination 

and turning signifies

a repentance
a refocus
a change of heart

as we turn from the world... and turn towards "home"

4. He Lives In You (Romans 8:16)

Simba ran from a problem
and had been away from home so long

that he had forgotten who he was

because being son of the king
makes you

an heir
a descendent
royalty

Then one day his very own reflection
reminded him

that his father still lived in him

teaching that

when you run
if you run
after you've run

you will eventually have to face your mistakes

learn
grow
mature

remember who you are

drop pride and
return to the rock

(did you get all that?)

3. Everything the light touches is our kingdom (Ephesians 5:8)

Jesus is the light
and everything He touches belongs to us

Real.
Simple.

Peace?
(He gives that)

Joy? 
(He brings that)

Love?
(He is that)

So everything we need is found in Jesus

and we must walk in the Light
and avoid the darkness

knowing the destructive

forces
follows
finds

when we venture out into that "shadowy place"
which is why He had to

give us His life
to give us ours

2. We Each Matter (1 Corinthians 12:14)

because on the drive home I couldn't stop thinking about

all of the work that went into the production 
all of the people behind the scenes who we did not see

the stagers and choreographers
the costume and set designers
the orchestra and lighting crew

and I realize that we will not each have the opportunity

to play the lead role
and sing our song
on stage

but with Jesus
we are

each important
each matter 
each play a part

in the final production

1. Hakuna Matata (Matthew 6:25-26)

Surprised, right? 

My favorite and number one takeaway from "The Lion King"
is the Swahili phrase "Hakuna Matata"

it means "no worries"
from literally translated...

Hakuna (there is not here)
Matata (problem)

and so since

we know
we've learned
we've found

"The Lion King of Judah"
(praise)

we just can't stop singing...

"It means no worries for the rest of your days. 
It's our problem-free, philosophy... Hakuna Matata!"


Click to read... Student Driver

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Day 25... Revisiting Our Gratitude For His Grace

I can hardly stand to watch anymore
all you hear is...

cash
clash
crash

turmoil
war and
desperation

everywhere

People we suspect are unhappy
proving us right

People we expect to be happy
proving us wrong

and the media carefully packaging it up and delivering it to us daily

willingly
playing us

the same report

of...

cash
clash
crash

So I put down the remote
because I can hardly stand to watch anymore

and instead close my eyes

collapse
clasp
grasp

onto Him


____________________________________

"Student Driver... A Lesson in Grace"
originally posted on 10/03/12

Ever notice how differently we treat student drivers?


Think about it...

we slow down for them
we leave a respectable distance between "us" and "them"
we let them merge into the lane the moment they put their blinker on

we bear with them
we treat them differently.
we make accommodations for them because of what we know about them.

They are... still learning

They have... taken the initiative to learn

They will... with time, get better

So we don't honk
or yell
or get too frustrated with them

because we know that those actions would probably

do more harm than good
stunt their growth
cause them to crash

So instead

we exercise
patience
and empathy

as we recall that the black lettering spelling out the words

"STUDENT DRIVER"

used to refer to us as well.

But what if we all were still adorned with black lettering
letting people know where we are in our journey?

What if our invisible scars were suddenly made visible?

Would it matter?
Would it make a difference how we treat one another?

If you could see that the coworker who irritates you...
"Is Lonely and Feels Empty Inside"

The difficult child in your class is suffering because... 
"Nobody Hugs Me at Home"

or if you knew that...

The stranger who is rude for no reason may be... 
"Coping With a Loss"

What if we could all see that?  How differently would we treat one another?

I'm just wondering...

How much more patient you would be (with me)
if you knew that some days I still feel like... a "Student Driver"?

John 15:12

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Day 15... Revisiting Our Gratitude For His Grace

This may make you laugh...

My mother owns the record soundtrack for "The Wiz" and
when I was younger

I used to move the living room coffee table

sing
act
perform

the full musical rendition

alone...

Which is probably why I have been just itching to have
a "Wiz" inspired Halloween party for the past two years now

Here's what happened last year...
___________________

"A Wizard of Oz" Inspired Halloween
originally posted 10/31/14

I've heard it said that...

"If you want to make God laugh, then tell Him your plans"


We had so much fun last Halloween when we hosted our Fear is not a Factor party
that all year long the kids and I have been

planning
preparing
promising

to host another fun gathering this Halloween!

Well today is supposed to be that day,
and I've since learned that if you wanna make God laugh... 

then tell Him your plans

What had been our plan all year?
To host a movie-themed party

What movie was our theme based on?
"The Wiz" (with Diana Ross and Michael Jackson)

(but some things got in the way of our planning and we decided to hold off on a party)

and the irony

of that didn't even hit me until yesterday as I was explaining to a coworker

what our plan had been,
and why we were cancelling the plan

and when she laughed and pointed out that we had just lived the movie
by experiencing our own "we're not in Kansas anymore" moment

I remembered the saying...

Wanna make God laugh?
tell Him your plans

And although we still "plan" to host our "Wizard of Oz" party someday
we know that it won't be today

So for now we'll just...

pop some corn
cuddle up together on our new couch
watch the movie

while simply enjoying the fact that...

"There's really no place like home"

____________________________________

And it appears that this really is just the party that refuses to happen

because yet again
some other things got in the way of our plans

But it would have been fun to...

make my daughter a low-heeled version of Jessica's (Dorothy shoes)

Make a pair of sparkly red shoes just like Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz:

hand out awards to all my friends for their strength... wisdom... courage

Heart... Brains... Courage:


put on my scarecrow costume and sing it just like the record (for laughs, of course)

Oh well, maybe next year?

(sharing this today)

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Revisiting Our Gratitude For His Grace... 31 Days

I am celebrating 3 years of writing here in this space...
(a journey I could have never imagined would be so sweet)

Five-Minute Friday

I've learned...
and grown...
and would like to invite you

to join me as

we spend 5 minutes for the next

#31days

recalling
remembering
revisiting

our Gratitude
for His Grace



Day 1: Calling- The Invitation... God is Calling You To Rest
Day 2: Family- A Child's Lesson... Family Encouragement and Graffiti
Day 3: Capture- A Mary... or a Martha
Day 4: Embrace- The Gift of Tears
Day 5: Home- Remember The Way Home
Day 6: Possible- This Kid's Got Heart
Day 7: Love- So In Love
Day 8: Purple- Receiving... The Other Side of Giving
Day 9: Trust- Trick or Treat? Teaching My Children About Choices
Day 10: Ready- Will You Be Ready?
Day 11: Rest- Resting on the Back of Something Bigger
Day 12: Storm- Panic or Praise... A Lesson For When Jesus Sleeps
Day 13: Patience- Life Under Construction
Day 14: Fly- You Can Catch More Flies...
Day 15: Laugh- "A Wizard of Oz" Inspired Halloween
Day 16: Green- Children's Art Studio... March Madness
Day 17: Offer- From Whiner To Winner
Day 18: Worth- The Brown Boots Live On (Part 1)
Day 19: Honor- Freedom Ain't Free
Day 20: Temporary- Moment in Your Life
Day 21: Wave- Don't Miss The Bus
Day 22: Value- A Bag of Opportunities
Day 23: Joy- Children's Art Studio... Flavors of Fall
Day 24: Silence- Hide Me
Day 25: Crash- Student Driver
Day 26: Whisper- On Stage With The Father
Day 27: Perhaps- Get Naked (A Mature Thought)
Day 28: Hope- I Still Believe
Day 29: Sea- Discovering Destiny in the Dead Sea
Day 30: Bacon- The Enemy You Feed
Day 31: Almost- Leave Your Mark