Saturday, April 30, 2016

Me, Myself and I

Me, Myself and I

I recently took my precious little three-year old grandson to the local Children's Museum.  One of his favorite play spots in the museum is this wall of small red pegs where he can stand on the other side and press his body into the pegs, creating a cool "mold" of his body.  He made two molds and I was able to keep him from destroying them long enough to snap a picture of he and his "twins."  Isn't that a sweet smile on his darling face?!

When I look at these three "bits" of him, it reminds me of the term, "Me, Myself and I."  I'm in no way referring to a popular song by Beyoncé that uses that term.  I don't know that song's lyrics and I'm quite sure their meaning is not what I'm after in this post.  So, if you're familiar with her song, just put it out of your head (:

There's a quote made many years ago by an actress of another era, Loretta Young.  She said, "I was deaf and dumb and blind to all but me, myself and I."

It's interesting that there is such a term as, "Me, Myself and I," because in reality, there are three parts to each of us.  There is the body, soul and spirit, and although they are one within us, they are also separate elements of our being.  If we use Landon in the picture above as an example, it's easy to see which of the three is his actual physical body.  The two little guys seen from the back could represent that invisible part of ourselves known as our soul and spirit. 

Since we were created in the image of our triune (three-person) God, we would necessarily be a triune person.  We know the physical part of ourselves, let's peek at those two fellows with their backs to us.  Scripture tells us, "For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit..." Hebrews 4:12.

First of all, there is the soul, which contains the personality, the imagination, conscience, memories, reason and affections.  It's also the part of us that is targeted for temptation by the dark forces.  The soul easily affects the actions of the physical.  The lust of the flesh begins in the soul.

Then there is our second friend, the spirit, that inner part of us wherein is born faith, hope, prayer, worship, and salvation.  It is through our spirit that we can understand the things of God that are revealed to us by His Spirit.

I say to you as Paul did to the Thessalonians, when he wrote to them, saying, "Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you completely; and may your whole spirit, soul, and body be preserved blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ" 5:23.

"Bless the Lord, O my soul; and all that is within me, bless His holy name!" Psalm 102:1.

Saturday, April 23, 2016

The Sad Hebrew Captive

"The Hebrew Captive"

  This poignant marble statue was beautifully carved by Chauncey Bradley Ives in 1864.  It's on display at the Chrysler Museum in Norfolk.  Ives' artistry has frozen a moment in time where we can glimpse the sadness of the Jewish people as they were held in captivity in Babylon for 70 years during the time of Daniel.  The sculptor captured the feeling of sadness in the droop of the young woman's head and her melancholy expression, and the way she leans upon her silent harp.  She has no desire to pluck the strings, because there is no music in her soul. 

Psalm 137:1-2 says, "By the rivers of Babylon, there we sat down, yea, we wept when we remembered Zion.  We hung our harps upon the willows in the midst of it."

Since the beginning of time after the first sin (which caused the first "loss"), we've all had to deal with sadness and loss.  The word "loss" by its very definition means that something is missing - something that was valuable and important to us -- something that might have been the very joy of our hearts. 

The more you love, the more susceptible you are to feeling sadness and loss.  Alfred, Lord Tennyson wrote, "Tis better to have loved and lost, than never to have loved at all."  I think most of us would agree to the truth of his words, yet we must also be prepared for the bittersweet results we are left with.  I'm writing "melancholy," because I'm feeling like the statue looks.  It's hard to pull yourself from the pit of melancholy.  That old song, "Only Jesus...." comes to mind.

To escape the pit of melancholy, we've got to let go our grip on the root of sadness and loss that holds us down, and reach that hand up to Jesus.  He has His nail-scarred hand held out, ready to lift us up.  I know He wants to fill that empty loss with His own dear peace and joy.  We just have to be willing to make the trade.

"You have turned for me my mourning into dancing; You have put off my sackcloth and clothed me with gladness.  To the end that my glory may sing praise to You and not be silent.  O Lord my God, I will give thanks to You forever" Psalm 30:11-12.

The Lord alone knows and understands our sadness and loss -- and He loves us like no one else ever can.  Thank you, Jesus.  You are my Light and my Salvation. 
            "Delight thyself in the Lord...." Psalm 37:4.

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Joy in the Journey

Joy in the Journey - a Traveler's Tale with a Twist

I just published my latest book, which is an inspirational adventure through God's world.  It's a book I started about five years ago and recently polished up for publication.  The subject is one I feel strongly about -- that God offers us messages in the world around us on a regular basis.  We just need eyes to see and ears to hear, as Scripture tells us.

Most of the 44 chapters feature a photo taken either by myself of my husband Larry.  In the chapter, I suggest a message from God based around the individual photos, and help the reader become more aware of messages in the mundane that can be found in the world around them as well.  I greatly wish photos in the print copies could be in color, but I'm afraid the cost of the book would be far more than most people would want to pay.  Pictures in the ebook edition are in color if you have a color device.  Nonetheless, the message is the same and, hopefully, you will be blessed either way.

The book is available at Amazon in print and ebook.  Hopefully, you can click this link and get to my Amazon page:  Sandra's books, click here

I hope you will enjoy the book and begin seeing your own messages from God along the way.