Fish

A Woman's Perspective



Message from Dan: "I asked my wife to do the blogging for me, because I like the way she writes & I think you will, too!
Besides.... I'd rather be fishing!"


Monday, October 17, 2011

God Navigation

I was reading a Bible passage from the Book of John the other day when I was struck by Peter’s longing for Jesus and his responsive attempt to correct his own course.  He adjusted himself in the hope of coming into closer alignment with Jesus.  He was in the right place at the right time… he was actively engaged in the listening process… but what he couldn’t avoid was the affect of his own human reasoning on the communication process.  I found myself identifying with Peter as he swung his “reaction pendulum” in opposite directions attempting to relate to Jesus. 

John chapter 13 identifies the time and setting as the Passover Festival where Jesus is gathered with His disciples for the evening meal and He knows that His work on earth is nearly finished.  Verses 3 & 4 say “Jesus knew that the Father had put all things under his power, and that he had come from God and was returning to God; so he got up from the meal, took off his outer clothing, and wrapped a towel around his waist.”  Jesus is acting with specific intent here.  Have you ever known anyone who was dying?  With their last spoken words they want to express what is most important to those whom they love.  They want their parting words to be meaningful… to impact lives…  so they measure them well.  Jesus knows this will be His last chance to personally interact with His disciples…  Verse 1 says that “having loved his own who were in the world, he loved them to the end.”  So this is his exit strategy.  They didn’t realize that they were about to receive a parting legacy from their Master.  In verse 7 Jesus says “You do not realize now what I am doing, but later you will understand.” Whatever He was about to do would be meaningful & important to the future.  So Jesus poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciple’s feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around Him.

Let me sidetrack a moment and describe something that happened to me when I was about 19 years old.  There was a family from church I used to hang out with.  I enjoyed many unique family dinners with them and they always had a lot of fun together.  I introduced a friend of mine to them, and on this particular afternoon she and I were invited over after church for dinner.  It soon became apparent that their son was attracted to my friend.  There was a visible spark between the two of them which became more obvious when after dinner the parents put on some music and proceeded to teach us a variety of dance steps including the Foxtrot, Tango, & Waltz.  It really was a blast, but I found myself hesitating to dance with the son even though he graciously asked me to.  My pride prevented me from accepting his invitation, because I knew that he favored my friend and my own heart was hurting from a recent breakup.  A year later, my friend and their son actually got married and are still married to this day.  But I have always regretted not dancing with him that afternoon.  I let the mists of my emotions and pride steer me off course, and I  missed out on the joy of the moment.

So there’s Peter, watching Jesus wash the feet of his fellow disciples, and he balks when it’s his turn.  Do you suppose it was because his hadn’t been the first feet to get washed?  No matter his internal motivations, even if he was thinking that he wasn’t worthy of such a gift, his pride was misplaced when he declared to Jesus “You shall never wash my feet!”  Jesus tries to steer him back by replying “Unless I wash you, you have no part with me.”  So here’s the 2nd pendulum swing for Peter.  He says “Then Lord, not just my feet but my hands and my head as well!”  I laugh at this response, because I can totally see myself in the same place… one moment he’s standing on his laurels and the next he’s plunging forward with eager expectations.  I think Peter responded with an adamant course correction because his heart’s desire was to connect deeply to Jesus.

That’s been my heart’s desire as well, but I’ve had to make both major and minor course corrections along the way.  Sometimes we get blown off course by “life storms” and other times our pride causes subtle drifts in direction.  A verse that I’ve brought with me from my summer of faith with God is Hebrews 13:3-4 “But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called “Today,” so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness.  We have come to share in Christ, if indeed we hold our original conviction firmly to the very end.”  The New Living Translation says,  “You must warn each other every day, while it is still “today,” so that none of you will be deceived by sin and hardened against God.  For if we are faithful to the end, trusting God just as firmly as when we first believed, we will share in all that belongs to Christ.”

Jesus told Peter that “Those who have had a bath need only to wash their feet; their whole body is clean.”  Because I’m trusting Jesus as my Savior, I’m spiritually clean, too; but, I need my feet washed on a regular basis.   That’s where being connected with other believers comes in to play.  We need to be doing life together with friends that we’re connected to who can encourage us, or warn us, and help keep our spiritual ships afloat!   We don’t need expensive computers and GPS or even the stars to navigate.  We just need each other!  In my Women’s Small Group we meet weekly and share our lives.  We encourage each other by listening, praying, sharing food.  It’s like a little oasis of time that I’ve come to treasure.

The John 13 passage says “Having loved his own who were in the world, he loved them to the end.”  I think this is the kind of love, devotion and loyalty that Jesus demonstrated, and which He wants us to lavish upon one another.  The importance of the message is punctuated by the timing of its delivery on that final Passover meal.  It was Peter’s human processing and pride that caused his initial negative reaction, but it was his heart for God that helped him change his course.  I John 4:7-8 tell us that love comes from God; and it’s proof that we know God when we are actively engaged in the process of loving one another! Are you “washing the feet” in your life, or are you in need of a course correction? Are the mists of your pride obscuring your spiritual vision and getting in the way of experiencing all God has for you? Consider Proverbs 3:1-6 as a recipe for living and loving and experiencing God’s favor in your life...


“My son, do not forget my teaching,
but keep my commands in your heart,
for they will prolong your life many years
and bring you peace and prosperity.

Let love and faithfulness never leave you;
bind them around your neck,
write them on the tablet of your heart. 
Then you will win favor and a good name
in the sight of God and man.
 
Trust in the Lord with all your heart
and lean not on your own understanding;
in all your ways submit to him,
and he will make your paths straight.”

Monday, September 26, 2011

CONCERT BRINGS UNEXPECTED INSIGHTS

What a GREAT concert and celebration of 25 years of uplifting Music from The Joy FM.  Thank you for making encouraging Christian Music accessible to so many!  For us it was a festive night spent among friends and the amazing family of Joy FM Listeners.  We were all in for a quadruple treat and the artists delivered the goods!  I was particularly excited for the opportunity to enjoy the music of Audrey Assad in person since I have fallen in love with her LYRICS this year.  It was fun getting to meet her and tell her what a blessing her music has been.

 So the evening passed very enjoyably and finally Brandon Heath was introduced and came out to sing.  He ended up doing something that I wonder if he will do again in the future.  I think the outcome was a little unexpected and more than he bargained for.  For me it ended up illustrating Jesus in a surreal way.  So what Brandon did was invite all the kids to come down to the front.  They came as if the floodgates had been opened.  And it was sweet seeing them gathered in a big cluster watching Brandon sing.  They had cell phones and were photographing and videotaping him. 

But I was soon aware of a feeling of discomfort, because it quickly became apparent that the cloud cluster of kids was continuing to brew and surge forward until they were actually encroaching on the stage itself!  You could see the surprise on Brandon’s face while at the same time that he’s trying to sing; he’s saying, “keep a reasonable distance.”  Carmen's mother was sitting in front of me, and about that time she turned around and said under her breath (in a rich Olympia Dukakis voice from "Steel Magnolias"), "Well, let's see how she's gonna handle this."  Without really being aware of cycling through the thoughts, I realized I was beginning to feel a bit stern toward the children and thought to myself, “Okay you parents… you need to do something.” 

And almost in the same split second of that thought, ANOTHER thought slammed into my mind, “Let the little children come to me!”  Wow!  It was a weird kind of déjà vu feeling.  I was aware of being on the edge of my seat trying to process the scene as the children continued to invade and the very words of Jesus are swirling in my head!  “For the kingdom of God belongs to such as these!”  “What does this mean?” I was asking myself… “What do I need to understand here?” “What behavior do I need to replicate in my own life to become like one of these children?”

Another thought slipped in… “Give an inch and they take a mile!”  By this time I’m over the discomfort and am actually feeling a little fanciful, like I’ve stepped into an odd Christian Peter Pan movie set or something.  But then I realize, THAT’S exactly what Jesus liked about the children… their open eagerness… their uninhibited spontaneity… their lack of strategy…  They were just ready to respond and accept the gift that was being offered. 

It’s hard to explain how magical it was at that point.  I have to admit, I was sweating there for a moment, but the happy ending came.  Brandon finished the song and with a lot of kindness and grace told the kids he was going to sing a ballad next, so they needed to back up and sit down but that he wanted them to stay.  It was really a precious sight… like they were there to see Jesus. I think they got a pretty good representation of Him.  My hat’s off to Brandon Heath!  To "Steel" a line from the aforementioned movie... "He sounds like good people to me!"       

Friday, September 23, 2011

LUNCH & A BLOG


So… its been an emotional journey this week.  We have a good friend who passed over into heaven on Monday night.  She fought a long hard battle with breast cancer (no capital letters for that disease!).  So I’ve found myself needing some extra comfort this week.  My fall women’s small group met at my house on Tuesday night and I invited them into my kitchen and proceeded to make an apple pie from scratch.  We talked and laughed together until it went into the oven, and then we went over our lesson and had some worship and prayer time.  Then the oven timer went off and the pie was ready.  You already know our penchant for Blue Bell Ice Cream… in this case the flavor was Homemade Vanilla!  I think women are good at that comfort thing.  We just know what to do to make each other feel better.  Honestly, I know some men who are amazing at that, too, so I love my brothers and sisters who have those empathetic hearts and give good hugs! 

So… this morning I’m at the grocery store ‘cause I have to take a dessert to another event tonight; and I’m thinking to myself, “should I make SOPAPILLAS, or PECAN PRALINES, or HELLO DOLLY’S.”   Of course, I’m also on my cell phone talking to a friend.  I made this custom little shoulder purse to hold my phone so I can just insert an ear bud and talk without having to hold onto it.  So I’m getting more animated in my conversation and I realize that people are beginning to look at me and they think I’m talking to myself!!!  What a hoot! 

So… comfort comes in many forms.  There’s the FOOD form, and the FRIEND form, and even strangers at the grocery store can bring a smile to my face.  The girl who checked me out got excited when she saw the COCOA ALMONDS I was purchasing!  And on the way home, I passed by the Motorcycle Officer who pulled me over earlier in the summer and I wanted to roll down my window and tell him “I’m the one you pulled over back in June and you REALLY blessed my day!”  You’ll have to get Dan to tell you the rest of THAT story.    

So… I decided to comfort my family today with an impromptu lunch of broiled New York Strip Steaks, Baked Potatoes, and some tasty Steamed Vegi’s from the freezer section.  As I deliver my husband’s meal to The Joy FM, I make the decision to change the name of my Hello Dolly Recipe… kind of like building a MONUMENT to mark the faithfulness and love of God.   From this day forward, I’m calling them “HELLO DARYLs” because that’s what the Savior Jesus said to my friend this week in heaven! 

This is The Message version of Psalm 121.  The “moonstroke” reference made me smile.

            “I look up to the mountains; does my strength come from mountains?
No, my strength comes from God, who made heaven, and earth, AND MOUNTAINS.  He won’t let you stumble, your Guardian God won’t fall asleep.  NOT ON YOUR LIFE!  Israel’s Guardian will never doze or sleep.  God’s your Guardian, right at your side to protect you—Shielding you from sunstroke, sheltering you from MOONSTROKE.  GOD GUARDS you from every evil, he guards your very life.  He guards you when you leave and when you return, he guards you NOW, he guards you ALWAYS.”  

Friday, January 14, 2011

Like A Little Child...

Have you ever noticed how quickly a little child gets back up when he's fallen down? He can be shocked and crying...even bleeding...and when his mom or dad picks him up and brushes him off and tells him he's okay, the tears instantly dry up and he's off again... right back in the game, engaging wholeheartedly, holding nothing back. It sort of puts a new spin on the Bible passage in Luke 18 that talks about needing to be like a little child. As adults of whatever age we are, life definitely knocks us around sometimes. But the problem with us is that we let life get to us. We process that if we get back up we're gonna just get knocked down again. It's not something that happens overnight... it's more like a gradual errosion of confidence and hope.

So what's the REAL ISSUE here? TRUST!!! The difference when you picked your child up and dusted him off and told him he was "good to go" was that HE BELIEVED YOU! What a precious gift that is...believing. Children are programmed instinctively to "believe". They just start over with totally refreshed minds and reengage life from a perspective of hope. So what does that mean for us? Psalm 9:10 says "Those who know your name will trust in You, for You Lord, have never forsaken those who seek you." Can you remember being a child and learning your parents first names, and explaining to your friends that not only does your mom and dad have another name, but your mom even had a different name before she married your dad? Expounding on this knowledge made you feel like you really "knew" something special about your parents. I remember thinking about the Irish origins of my mother's maiden name, Doherty, and feeling connected to something larger than myself. Somehow, increasing your knowledge of them made them even more trustworthy and safe. I think that's what the Psalmist is implying. As we seek to know and experience more of God, we will grow to trust Him more. God's very nature is eternal, unchanging, faithful... it makes sense to trust Him with our future.

From another perspective, why do we care so much about our children? Because 1) they belong to us, 2) we helped bring them into this world, and 3) we have a stake in their future success. We have a deep connection to them. It's the same with God's attitude toward us. Psalm 100 says "It is He who made us, and we are His, the sheep of his pasture." He is there for us, watching and attentive. He picks us up when we fall down; He finds us when we get lost. He's always very near; we have only to reach out for Him. Exodus 33:14 says "My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest."

During one of my devotionals this week, I came across the thought that "no matter how steep or treacherous the path before you, the safest place to be is by His side." I admit that it's a hard thought to accept, but in my heart I know it's true. No one cares for us like Jesus. I believe His words when he said in John 10:10 "I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly." Who among us doesn't want abundant life? I hope we can recapture the essence of becoming like a child and making a point of running to our heavenly Father and giving Him the opportunity to hold us in His loving arms, gently brush us off, and set us firmly back on our feet again. May we be richly blessed as we put our trust and hope in the Lord for 2011!

Jeremiah chapter 17, verses 7-8 says:

"But blessed are those who trust in the Lord
and have made the Lord their hope and confidence.

They are like trees planted along a riverbank,
with roots that reach deep into the water.

Such trees are not bothered by the heat
or worried by long months of drought.
Their leaves stay green, and they never stop producing fruit."




Tuesday, September 28, 2010

"He Will Wipe Every Tear From Their Eyes"

Revelation 21:4


I just received a phone call from my daughter, Grace. She was in tears of heartfelt sympathy over the death of a close friend’s father. She was trying to make sense of it… trying to take in the immensity and impact on her friend’s life… “She’s only 21, mom.” How crushing it is to lose someone who is so dear. How do we cope? How can we make it through the process of grieving? It’s such a personal journey, and it can be so lonely. People don’t know how to help even though they really want to. A friend of mine has written a worship song whose lyric expresses a simple answer to the inconsolable pain.


“I know YOUR love is the only hope…
and I know I need YOU!”

September marks the loss of my own dear father 8 years ago. I still can’t believe he’s been gone so many years now. I think of him often and see him in the faces of my children (and even my own face) sometimes. Another friend of mine recently lost her father. We are attending a memorial service this week for a friend who has passed… a kind and authentic lady who we will miss. Experiencing grief of this nature has given me deep empathy for others who walk the same road.


I just wanted to mark the season with some words of acknowledgement and healing to those who are struggling with past and present losses of loved ones. Whether your pain is fresh or lingering, I want you to know that you’re literally not alone! God loves you and cares deeply for your hurts. From the Bible’s NIV Translation 1 Peter 5:7 says “Cast all your anxiety on Him, because he cares for you.” The Contemporary English Version says “God cares for you, so turn all your worries over to Him.” I love how descriptive the Amplified Bible is with this verse. “Casting the whole of your care—all your anxieties, all your worries, all your concerns, once and for all—on Him, for He cares for you affectionately and cares about you watchfully.” My friend’s song goes on to describe the tender manner in which God wants to engage with us.


“YOU take me in as YOUR OWN, and now I know I’m not alone…

YES! YOU LOVE ME!”


May we be blessed & renewed as we move into a new season!

AFFECTIONATELY, KIM

Monday, April 12, 2010

Ice Cream Party!

People ask me all the time what it’s like to be married to a radio announcer. My verbal answer is usually preceded by the raising of my eyebrows and the taking in and letting out of a deep breath. It’s actually a lot of fun having a husband on the air. Dan has been at The Joy FM for 10 years now, and I especially continue to feel connected and grateful to the rest of the staff. It’s like having extra extended family around that you can depend upon in the pinches of life. As individuals they’re the real thing… genuine and consistent.

So I was thinking that we’d celebrate Dan’s decade at The Joy FM by inviting ya’ll to an Ice Cream Party. People have been celebrating and marking special occasions with ice cream for decades. At the Brodie Homestead, Blue Bell is the brand that’s in demand! Did you know that Blue Bell Creameries is named after the Texas wildflower that, like ice cream, thrives in the summer time? They boast 66 flavors, with 20 flavors offered year-round, and an additional 2-3 dozen offered seasonally. So I’ve taken the liberty of pre-selecting a trial smorgasbord from Blue Bell’s palette of flavors, and I invite you to partake with me as we celebrate The Joy FM Staff. The people ARE the ice cream as you’ll soon discover. Just to be a good sport, I even assigned a flavor to myself… I’m Southern Blackberry Cobbler (Creamy ice cream with a luscious blackberry flavor combined with flaky pie crust pieces and a blackberry sauce swirl), because I’m from Little Rock, I love experimenting with the concept of home-baked comfort, and I have a strong side!

Jeff MacFarlane – Chocolate Moo-llennium Crunch
(Rich chocolate ice cream with a combination of dark chocolate chunks, creamy caramel chunks, roasted pecan halves, chopped almonds, walnut pieces and peanuts)
Jeff is serious & complex with a wide range of tastes & talents... AND unmistakable appeal.

Dan Brodie – Pecan Pralines ‘n Cream
(A combination of praline sauce swirled into a creamy vanilla ice cream sprinkled with praline-coated pecans.)
Dan’s a smooth mixture of sweet disposition with a snappy sense of humor.

Carmen – Rocky Road
(Rich, dark chocolate ice cream generously sprinkled with chopped, butter-roasted almonds and miniature marshmallows.)
Carmen is an outspoken southern lady of soul with a huge soft heart who can be a little nutty sometimes.

Bill Martin -- White Chocolate Almond
(Creamy vanilla ice cream with chunks of white chocolate and roasted chopped almonds.)
Bill is a traditional guy with a beautiful mind and a little extra appeal that wins you over. So who cares if he's really lactose-intolerant?

Dave Cruse -- Mocha Madness
(A rich coffee ice cream containing roasted pecan halves and chocolate chips, surrounded by a smooth caramel sauce.)
Dave’s a smooth communicator who is equally serious about work and play.

Michelle Tellone – Banana Split
(Combines fresh sliced bananas, crushed pineapple, diced maraschino cherries and chopped, roasted almonds into a rich vanilla ice cream with strawberry sauce and chocolate sundae sauce.)
Michelle knows how to partake of the good things life has to offer and not get too crazy over the details.

Jayar -- Candy Jar
(Rich caramel ice cream containing all of your favorite candy pieces - peanut butter cups, chocolate chunks, peanut brittle, chunks of caramel and chocolate crisp pieces.)
His brain is a “mind-field” of stimulating & creative ideas… but does it seem like he gets into trouble a lot? …the proverbial kid caught with his hand in the “candy jar”?

Luisa -- Ultimate Neopolitan
(Three of the most popular flavors, Homemade Vanilla, Dutch Chocolate and Strawberries & Homemade Vanilla packaged side by side in one carton.)
Louisa is a sweet mixture of the essentials with bonus heart features.

Karen -- Cake and Ice Cream
(A creamy vanilla ice cream with chocolate sprinkles, chocolate-coated cake pieces and a swirl of luscious chocolate icing)
Karen brings her expertise & assets to the table with frosting on top.

Donna -- Homemade Vanilla
(Our most popular icecream and with good reason. It's rich, homemade
tasting vanilla ice cream with a special hand-cranked flavor that's the
best in the country)
Donna is whole-hearted & reliable, and goes well with everything!

Mary -- The Great Divide
(A great combination of Homemade Vanilla ice cream and rich, creamy Dutch Chocolate ice cream in one unique carton.)
Mary is sleek and decisive… a discerning chick with a flare for the practical. No frills necessary.

Johanna – Mint Chocolate Chip
(Creamy mint ice cream sprinkled with delicious semi-sweet chocolate chips.)
Johanna is refreshing in her outlook and her stories stay with you.

Bill Harrier – Dutch Chocolate
(Rich, creamy chocolate ice cream made with the finest imported chocolate)
Bill is essential & irreplaceable! Enough said!

Avery -- Happy Tracks
(Creamy vanilla ice cream loaded with chocolate-coated peanut butter cups and a dark chocolate fudge swirl)
Avery combines the best of youth & intellect served up with a ready smile.

Kris? -- come on… the guy’s already named after a donut company!

Affectionately,
Kim

P. S. Thanks Joy FM Staff for being a part of my family for 10 years!

Monday, March 29, 2010

Spring Cleaning

I will try not to be overly cheesy and sentimental in my postings; however, I should let you know up front that my worldview is distinctly “mother”. Becoming a mom has opened up vast territories in my heart and has played an integral role in my development as a human being in pursuit of a God who is the ultimate Lover of my soul!

But having said all that, I’d like to share with you about cleaning my refrigerator today. You know how when you’re sort of in the mood for a little housework project it goes a little more smoothly? Well, that’s just what happened to me. My kind husband was at the grocery store with a double-text message shopping list when it occurred to me that I could perform refrigerator resuscitation by removing all the out of date items from the overloaded shelves and drawers. So… armed with a bottle of 409, a roll of Bounty, and some self determination, I did a complete makeover on the old girl and brought her back to a state of youth and beauty. It occurred to me as I worked that I was carrying out one aspect of a universally accepted seasonal service otherwise known as spring cleaning. I felt a true sense of industry knowing I was spending some quality Sunday afternoon time on a relatively short and specific task and I purposed to let myself off the hook from further pursuits under the same category.

We’re doing a sermon series at church right now on The Beatitudes. Spring cleaning prompted me to consider the process of spiritual spring cleaning that is suggested by the beatitude “blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy.” The passage was the parable about the man who was brought before the King for being $100,000 in debt. He threw himself upon the king’s mercy and was granted a reprieve. But later, having experienced forgiveness of his debt, that same man had his own servant (who owed him only $10) mercilessly imprisoned. When the king heard, he was disgusted with the man and ended up exacting the man’s own sentence upon him.

Our pastor passionately and circumspectly invited us to consider doing some spiritual cleaning in the area of forgiving those who have hurt us. I’m familiar with the healing that takes place when you forgive others. Back in my 20’s God prompted me to come to terms with forgiving my parents. As I grew into young adulthood I began to blame them for a variety of issues with which I struggled. The bottom line was that they were reasonably good parents who loved me and provided for me the best way that they could. The truth was that it was my own sin that was causing my struggles and I was in great need of God’s mercy working in my life. I’ve often shared with my own children that when they grow up they will need to forgive me for not being a perfect parent…that I will let them down sometimes. But there is a perfect Lover of their souls who will never let them down, and their need for Him is vital to life.

After the message, God brought to mind one of my little $10 hurts, and I conducted His business of debt removal by confessing my unwillingness to forgive a small debt and by asking for His help in forgiving others when they hurt me. I would encourage you to give some consideration as to who it is you need to forgive; and to prayerfully offer mercy to that individual. Romans 5:8 says: “But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” How can we withhold from others what is so freely given to us?

Affectionately,
Kim

P. S. Good luck with your spring cleaning endeavors!