Five Minute Friday: Play

Play

//I smiled broad and deep then chuckled out loud at the memories of children at play. Of my own times of play as a child:

The abandon.
The lack of concern about clothing or body being covered with dust or sweat.
The heat did not matter.
The freedom of running hard.
Breathless.
Joyful.

Children don’t know and perhaps would not care, even if an attempt is made to tell them, that play is important to their development. That it is through play that they develop their imagination, dexterity. Their physical, cognitive and emotional strengths. That they are learning to work in groups, to share, to resolve conflicts.

Play also has benefits for adults. It can relieve stress, boost creativity, and improve relationships and our connections to others. Let us give ourselves permission to play. We need regular playtime as much as children do.

I encountered this quote by George Bernard Shaw, today, “We don’t stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.”//* Let’s play.

I am joining Kate Motaung and other members of the Five Minute Friday Community for our weekly writing adventure. To learn about Five Minute Friday, click here. This week’s prompt is, “Play.”

FMF sq image Play

*Content between the // were written within the 5 minute window.

Some sources of information about the benefits of play are the American Academy of Pediatrics, PsychCentral, and HelpGuide.org. The latter has several helpful suggestions for creating opportunities to play. For example, “Schedule time in a park or at the beach to throw a Frisbee or fly a kite with friends.”

Five Minute Friday: Blessing

Oranges have essential vitamin contents, antioxidants, protein, water percentage, and fiber. These are necessa (1)

Blessing –
“Help and approval from God”

Blessing.
Also defined as “a beneficial thing for which one is grateful; something that brings well-being.”

That You want to bless me,
I have no doubt.

You have made it clear in Your written Word.
The equivalent of a written promise.
Many of them.

An example being the one You made to Abraham.
The one You called friend.
“I will bless you amd make you a blessing.”

Blessing – defined as “a beneficial thing for which one is grateful”
Grateful.
I am not always grateful because I do not always recognize what You have given as a blessing.

Especially when it does not look like what I asked for.
Beseeched You for:
Healing.
Restoration of a relationship.
Freedom from pain.
Eight hours of uninterrupted sleep.

But I can testify to the truth that
in time.
With grace.
With maturity.
I come to recognize that what seemed as anything but a blessing
in fact was,
because of what You did with it in my life.

Count Your Blessings

Joining Kate Motaung and other members of the Five Minute Friday Community for our weekly writing adventure. To learn about Five Minute Friday, click here. This week’s prompt is, “Blessing.”

 

 

Five Minute Friday: Steady

steady

//“Steady as she goes.” This is an order or instruction given to a helmsman by the captain, to keep the ship heading “steadily on the same course regardless of gusts of wind or cross-currents.”*

“Regardless of wind or cross-currents.” You give me similar instructions, as in keeping my eyes on Jesus, “the Author and Perfecter” of my faith.

But sometimes, like Peter, I take my eyes off of You and, like Peter, I begin to sink beneath the waves. At other times, I stray off course, following things that distract my attention from You.

Sometimes, I remain on course but instead of steady strides, my knees buckle beneath the weight of grief and loss. And discouragement. And cares You never meant for me to carry on my own.

Then, as the lame man experienced, You speak to me as Peter did to him and take hold of my hand with a firm grip and raise me up. And like him, my feet and ankles become strong and steady. And I can say like Habakkuk did, “The Lord God is my strength [my source of courage, my invincible army]; He has made my feet [steady and sure] like hinds feet and makes me walk [forward with spiritual confidence] //
on my high places (of challenges and responsibility).” Thank You, Abba. Thank You.

FMF steady

I am joining Kate Motaung and other members of the Five Minute Friday community,  for our weekly writing adventure. To learn more about the Five Minute Friday community, click here. This week’s writing prompt is, “Steady.”

*Information about the nautical phrase, “Steady as she goes,” can be found here.
(The content between //the double slashes //, was written within the allotted 5 minute time frame.)

Five Minute Friday: Worth

Vintage +Modern Mix& Match

//“Twas battered and scarred, and the auctioneer
Thought it scarcely worth his while
To waste much time on the old violin…”

So begins the beloved poem written by Myra Brooks Welch in 1921. It is, “The Touch of the Master’s Hand.” It tells the parable of an old violin that was devalued because of its condition. It was going to be sold for a measly amount of $3.00, until a master violinist picked it up, wiped away the dust, tightened its strings, and played, “a melody pure and sweet, as a caroling angel sings.” With his touch, he changed the worth of the old violin. Its final selling price? $3,000.

The poem demonstrates that the violin is a metaphor for the life of a human being who is “battered and scarred with sin,” his or her life out of tune, and sold for little or nothing. That is, until touched by the Master. Touched by the Potter who turns marred clay into vessels of worth. Turns shacks into temples that He puts His seal on. That He appropriates and certifies as His. //

Gives us His Holy Spirit in our hearts as a pledge. Like a security deposit to guarantee the fulfillment of His promise of eternal life. May we never again insult Him by allowing flesh and blood to define our worth.

Capture

I am joining Kate Motaung and other members of the Five Minute Friday community,  for our weekly writing adventure. To learn more about the Five Minute Friday community, click here. This week’s writing prompt is, “Worth.”

(The content between //the double slashes //, was written within the allotted 5 minute time frame. The complete poem, “The Touch of the Master’s Hand,” can be read here.
I also wanted to share a beautiful song, “Worth,” by Anthony Brown & Group Therapy.)

 

Five Minute Friday: Expect

the northern

Jesus is coming again. Not as a babe. Not as the Lamb. But as King of Kings and Lord of Lords. Jesus is coming again. I believe this to be true and to this degree, you can say that I expect His return. But do I expect, that is anticipate or look forward to His coming? I have to admit that I do not believe so. Why? Because true expectation changes behavior.

I think of what happens when I am expecting something, for example, a call or a package. When it is a call, I keep my cell phone close. Make sure the ringer is on and I listen for the ringing even when I am engaged in other activities. When I am expecting a person, my behaviors are similar but I also make preparations for the visit. True expectation changes behavior.

And so I long to long for His return because I know when I begin to truly expect His return, my perspective on life will change. The choices I make will change. What I value will change. For true expectation changes behavior.

expect

I am joining Kate Motaung and other members of the Five Minute Friday community, at our new home, for our weekly writing adventure. To learn more about the Five Minute Friday community, click here. This week’s writing prompt is, “Expect.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Five Minute Friday: Future

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It is hard to imagine a future when you lack hope.

It is hard to have hope when everything you can experience through your senses give you no reason to believe that the current circumstances will change.

It is hard to reach for, look forward to a future that, to your knowledge, will be more of the same.

The same pain.
The same struggle.
The same loneliness.
The same barren efforts.

But if you are His
you may feel hopeless but you are never without hope.

For He is the source of hope.

And He has made this declaration,

“For I know the plans I have for you, plans for your welfare, not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.”

Did you hear that? He has plans to give you a future and a hope.

Not just a future but one that is hope filled.

And He is able to do just what He says.

So I join with the apostle Paul in praying, “Now may God, the source of hope, fill you with all joy and peace as you believe, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy spirit.”*

You have a future, a glorious future.

future

I am joining Kate Motaung and other members of the Five Minute Friday community, at our new home. To learn more about the Five Minute Friday community, click here. This week’s writing prompt is, “Future.”

*Romans 15:13

Five Minute Friday: Visit

Visit.png

I am joining Kate Motaung and other members of the Five Minute Friday community for our weekly writing adventure. To learn about Five Minute Friday, click here. This week’s prompt is, “Visit.”

GO

One of the most powerful visits recorded in the Bible, at least that is my opinion, is Mary’s visit to Elizabeth. At the time, Elizabeth was 6 months pregnant with the forerunner of Jesus, John the Baptist. Mary, herself, had recently learned that she was chosen to be the mother of the long promised Messiah. It was in her womb God would hide Himself in seed form, grow, and then be birthed, like an ordinary baby, when He was anything but.

It was an amazing visit. From the time Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the Bible records, her baby leaped in her womb. Listen to some of Elizabeth’s words, “Who am I that the mother of my Lord should come and visit me? Mary responded in worship, with words that we have come to know as “The Magnificat.” “My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior. “

Yes, it was an amazing visit.

STOP

I pray that in my ordinary, everyday encounters, when I “visit with someone,” before the interaction ends, even when it is brief, in some way, and somehow, He will be exalted.

Five Minute Friday: More

more

Joining Kate Motaung and other members of the Five Minute Friday Community, for our weekly writing adventure. To learn more about Five Minute Friday, click here. This week’s prompt is, “More.”

Dare I believe it?
That You want me to imagine more?
Ask for more?
Dream more and bigger dreams?
To believe that You have more in store for me, for us?
The more recorded in Ephesians 3:20?
The “superabundantly more than all that we dare ask or think [infinitely beyond our greatest prayers, hopes, or dreams}.”
That kind of more?

Dare I believe it?
Dare I ask for more
when I,
too often,
am not thankful enough
for all that You have already bestowed so freely?
Dare I believe?

The answer is, “Yes.”
You can do more and want me to believe for more.
Because Your purpose is bigger than I can conceive.
And can only be accomplished when I access more of You.
Because the starting point,
the middle point,
the end point,
of all that is good and worthwhile,
and eternal,
is You.
And what I will always need is not things. 
Not even what You can do through me.
But more of You.
 

Five Minute Friday: Sing

sing

Joining Kate Motaung and other members of the Five Minute Friday community (on Saturday) for our weekly writing adventure. To learn more about Five Minute Friday, click here. This week’s prompt is “Sing.”

GO

 “How shall we sing a song of the Lord; in an alien land?
(But how can be sing a song to the Lord, in a foreign, or a strange, land?)
(Psalm 137:4, Wycliffe Bible)

“Oh, how could we ever sing God’s song in this wasteland? (Psalm 137:4, Message)

I can almost feel their heartbreak, the heartbreak of the children of Israel who had been led captive to Babylon because of their sin, their prolonged disobedience to God. They were asked by those who had captured them to sing one of the songs of Zion. They felt unable to do so.

And there are seasons in all of our lives when the idea of singing, of singing a song of the Lord, of singing a song to the Lord, in the place where we are, seems inconceivable. For where we are seems like a “wasteland,” “a foreign place.” But it is in those places and in those seasons that we must sing; we need to sing a song of the Lord, of His goodness and His unending grace of His mercy and of His faithfulness. Of His love and His promise to always be with us, when He seems most far away. It is then we must sing a song to Him.

STOP

Declaring to Him, “You are faithful. You are gracious. You are full of compassion and plenteous in mercy. There is no one like You. Your loving-kindness endures forever.” Because singing songs of praise and thanksgiving, worshipping Him focuses our attention on Him. Reminds us Who He is. And when we remember Who He is, we are reminded of who we are in Him, and of His promise to be with us always … in the fire, in the water, in the flood, in the wilderness. And work everything together for our good. He gives us the strength and the grace in the wasteland. And sometimes He transforms the wasteland, the wilderness, into a place where flowers blossom. Sometimes He transforms us in the wasteland, in the foreign places. Sing.

Five Minute Friday: Empty

empty

Joining Kate Motaung and other members of the Five Minute Friday community for our weekly writing adventure. To learn more about Five Minute Friday, click here. This week’s prompt is, “Empty.”

“He emptied Himself.”
He who is the Word.
He who was in the beginning.
He who has always been God.
He emptied Himself.

He, by whom, all things were created in heaven and on earth.
Visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities.
He emptied Himself.

He, in whom is all the fullness of the Godhead .
He who holds all things together.
He emptied Himself.

He emptied Himself and became flesh.
He emptied Himself.
And allowed Himself to know hunger and be tempted.

He emptied Himself and became the man of sorrows,
intimately acquainted with grief.
To be rejected and despised.
As John notes, He came unto His own but His own did not receive Him.

He emptied Himself and because He did,
we who “were once estranged
and alienated
and hostile-minded toward Him,”
are now reconciled to God through His physical death.
We now “may have and enjoy life,
and have it in abundance,
to the full,
till it overflows.” 
All because He emptied Himself.