Urgent Prayer Need

Sacrifice

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There couldn’t have been a more appropriate prompt today.  On my Facebook news feed this morning, I read about a young first-time-mother who had a stroke during labor that was not recognized as it happened.  The baby is fine, but Mom has lost her ability to speak, and her right side is affected.

If you are a praying person, please lift up this new mother and her family in prayer. The mother knew she would sacrifice some hours of discomfort and pain to bring her little girl into the world, but she didn’t know how great that sacrifice would be. And I’m pretty sure she doesn’t regret it. Still, this family  needs prayer.

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/sacrifice/

Under His Wings

Shadow

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There are already 84 responses to this prompt.  I’m really behind the eight-ball today 🙂

So I’m going to go with the first things that pop into my head: First, two songs.

The shadow of your smile when you are gone.. . . .

Me and my shadow, walking down the avenue . . . .

Then, so many Bible verses I won’t list them all, but here is one of my favorites:

Psalm 17:8

Keep me as the apple of the eye; Hide me in the shadow of Your wings. . .

Which takes me to a story I heard as a child to illustrate the protection afforded to us by being under His wing:

There was a farmer whose barn burned to the ground. After the fire was out and things had cooled down, he walked through the ash and the mess to see if anything at all had survived. He came across the carcass of a hen, and was sick to think of how she had died. He pushed her remains aside with his booted foot, and out from under her wings, several little chicks came scurrying.  The hen had given her life to save her chicks, protecting them under her wings.

What a place of refuge we can find under the wings of the God Who created us, loved us, and gave Himself for us.  Psalm 91:4.

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/shadow/

Hope

Write a new post in response to today’s one-word prompt.

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Hoping for the best. Ciara  squared her shoulders, tugged her suit jacket into perfect alignment, shook off her shyness, and prepared for the most important interview she’d ever have.

Well, it was her first interview, actually, so there was nothing to compare it with yet.

“Mr. Johnstone will see you now, Miss Favery.  Just go down the hall to the last door and knock.” She paused, eyeing Hope’s expression, seeing her obvious nerves. “You’ll be fine, Honey.  Just be yourself.”

The secretary couldn’t have said anything more perfect. It gave Ciara the courage she needed to walk down that long, thickly carpeted hall.  She raised her hand to knock on the door, giving it what she hoped was the perfect balance between bold and respectful.

“Yes, come in.”  It was a strong voice. Confident. Something Ciara envied.  Confidence.

She was not the prom queen, not the head cheerleader, not the star of the class play, not the Valentine Sweetheart.  Ordinary. Not ugly, not gorgeous. Just—average. Confidence was not  something people used when describing her.  Diligent, quiet, intellectual. But not confident.

Turning the knob, she stepped into a richly decorated office. A masculine office, comfortable and warm.  Earth tones, some rather outstanding art, a breathtaking view of the city.  But what really caught your attention was the desk, and the man behind it.

Rising, he held out his hand. “Miss Favery. I’m pleased to finally meet  you. Won’t you sit down?  May I offer you something to drink?  My secretary will be happy to get you whatever you’d like.”

“Um–no, no thanks, I’m fine.”  Ciara chose the leather chair across from Mr. Johnstone’s desk, enjoying the buttery feel and the way it conformed to her body. Boy. A person could get used to this.

“Well then, let’s get right to it.  I see from your resume that you’ve just finished your master’s degree. Tell me, are you thinking of a PhD?”

She hadn’t expected the question, and was startled for just a heartbeat. Gathering her wits, she said, “No, not now, at least.  Maybe someday, depending on where my work takes me. Anthropology is a wide field, and I’d like to work for a while before I consider more education.”

“I see here that your interest in anthropology  is centered on the linguistic.”

Ciara waited a beat, then realized he was waiting for a response. “Yes. Language has always intrigued me, and the way it has developed and informed cultures down through the centuries is fascinating.”

Mr. Johstone  was quiet. He gazed at her thoughtfully, tapping  his forefinger rhythmically on his blotter. Finally he spoke. “How many languages have you studied?”

“Well, my dad was in the army, and we moved around a lot.  I speak German, French, Italian, and Spanish.  I can read Russian, and I’m presently studying  Latin and Greek.  I’d like to learn Hebrew as well–”

“That’s pretty impressive, Miss Favery. You should be quite comfortable working as a translator then, wouldn’t you?”

“Yes, I believe I would. I’m very excited at the prospect of travel and of learning other cultures firsthand.”

“How long will it take you to pack a suitcase?  I’d like to leave  on Monday, less than three days from now. We’ll be headed to Greece, so you’ll need a wardrobe for warm weather. Also something for a formal evening now and then. My secretary will give you a list of what you’ll need.”

Ciara sat in stunned silence.  Finding her voice, she said, “You mean I’m hired?  Just like that?”

“I make quick decisions Miss Favery.  I think you’ll be perfect for the job.  Don’t let me down.”

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/hope/

 

A Sad Word–or Not?

Abandoned

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I am always intrigued by the way words in the English language can mean totally different things, or at least have several different connotations.

No one wants to be abandoned.  Abandonment raises many counseling issues, and tends to color a person’s whole life in shades of black and grey. The abandoned person feels worthless, isolated, guilty.  If a child is abandoned by a parent, lifelong struggles with the results of that can twist his life.  When an adult child abandons an elderly parent, the hopelessness is painful to see.

We think of abandoned pets, abandoned houses that deteriorate and are finally condemned. Abandoned train stations and rail yards  proliferate across our landscape, and are often the settings for interesting photography.  Abandoned mines cause sinkholes; they are dangerous in other ways as well. An abandoned graveyard is surely one of the most  eerie places in the world!

But–to love with abandonment is to love without restraint.  It is to love joyfully and gladly, with generosity of spirit.

We love to see children play in abandonment of all reality. They laugh, they run, they turn cartwheels and somersaults and return to their homes dirty, sweaty, and elated.

God created His world with great abandonment.  Look at the next sunrise or sunset.  Look at the Grand Canyon.  Look at whales, and then look at a microscope slide of a tiny cell. Gaze at the highest mountains, soak in the ocean’s vastness.  Look up and be amazed at the stars and the Northern Lights. Look down and consider the worlds beneath our feet.

Surely we love our grandchildren with abandonment. We take such joy in them, just in  looking at their precious little faces when they don’t know we are watching.

To be abandoned is tragic. To live and love with abandonment is great joy.

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/abandoned/

Medical Music

Music

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As  Jim lay on the hospital bed, hooked up to more machines than anyone had a right to expect, he was helpless to move or to speak. His brain was awake and alert, but he wasn’t even able to open his eyes.  There were tubes that covered all his bodily needs as he lay there trapped in his own mind, in his own body.

He did have some feeling, and he heard everything that was going on around him. When his wife took his hand, he knew it was her hand. Nothing else felt the same.  He knew his sons’ hands, and his daughter’s.  And now and then a smaller, softer hand would pat his own, and he knew it was a grandchild.  He especially loved it when those smaller hands touched his cheek or smoothed his hair. That could make the tears flow, and when he had tears everyone knew and understood that he was still there with them.

He had no idea how long he’d been there. He slept a lot, and knew he was on drugs that made him sleep so much.  He was thankful, because those same drugs took away the pain.

One day, his wife came in with an old tape cassette player. He was the only one who had used it in recent years. Everyone else had graduated to iPods, leaving him the only one who still enjoyed his CD collection as well as his tapes.

“I brought your tapes, Honey.  I know you miss your music.  I’m going to plug the machine in–the doctor said it was okay, and told me where to put it.  I brought your head phones so you won’t disturb anyone else.  One of us will be here almost all the time, and we can change tapes for you.  I brought a variety of things I know  you love. I wish you could blink or smile or something, to let me know you hear me, but I think you do hear me.  I think you’re awake somewhere in there.  I love you,  Jim.  Please come back to me.”

She fitted the headphones, checked the volume, and started the tape.  Jim’s head filled with the glorious sounds of Tchaikovsky’s Sixth  Symphony, and Jim’s whole body seemed to relax as the music soothed his mind and his heart.

He smiled. He didn’t even think about it.  Just smiled, and his wife’s eyes filled with tears.

“I don’t know why we didn’t think of this sooner,” she said.

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/music/