Back at Cha?

 
As I was driving this Holiday season,  a multitude of incidents presented themselves where I was privy to observe Stupidity at its finest! 

As I was thinking about people who do stupid things, with no consideration for others, I was almost run off the freeway – not once, but twice!   One driver in particular kept weaving in and out of lanes, compromising me and several other vehicles.  I rarely allow any type of irritation  to overwhelm me when I’m behind the wheel, because it’s just not worth it!  But this time, I found myself wanting him removed from this world!

A couple of minutes into my musing,   the thought came, “This is YOUR opportunity, Nancy, to show mercy.”


Mercy?  Truthfully I was feeling like running over all of them!
Okay…okay!   Prayers began to tumble from my heart and then from my lips.  I thanked God for protection and then prayed for each of those who crossed my path, that they would come to the full, deep and clear knowledge of salvation.  That God would send a Laborer of the Harvest to minister to them.    My heart felt lighter at once.  

The spiritual principle is basically, ” on him that has mercy, mercy will be shown.”  Even though my flesh doesn’t like it, I’m glad I have learned to fall right into place without much ado.


Now, our F-250 is a big truck, and with a shell on the bed, doesn’t always afford the clearest path of vision.  Changing lanes takes planning.  

Nearly at my destination, I signaled, checked, and checked again before pulling into the lane to exit the freeway.   When I checked my mirror, my heart skipped a beat. 

Yikes!  I accidentally cut someone off and suddenly,  I was the one who needed mercy.   They didn’t honk or shake their fist, but cleared a path for me instead.

Yeah. . .  I got the lesson…


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Dear Dad and Mom

As 2013 ends,  I have something to say to two very special people…..

Here is my Open letter to Dad and Mom Moon.

Nancy and Randy Kehr
Dear Dad and Mom,
I’ve been musing this cold winter morning.  So much is filling my mind and heart. 
You two have set the bar high!
You are living examples of what it means to be a Christian.
I know you are not perfect – but almost.
Dare I say HOW PROUD of you both I am?
Yes, I will say it! 
Over and Over!
In so many areas….you came, you saw and then you conquered~
Imagine – .your latest calling: using technology…and writing!
I am tickled that the two of you press on as you do.
Circumstances, physical issues and just living life are never optimum,
I know that.  Strength is fickle.  Thank God for HIS JOY.  I can see that His JOY is your strength.
You both have grabbed onto the relay stick and haven’t let go yet! 
Woosh!
Of course, you are much too humble to see what Warriors you have become!
Giants of the Faith!  Your obedience and consistency has made you that way.
I see it.   Others see it.
And you may never know just how many lives you have blessed.
So don’t even think of giving up now.  Do the doing.  It DOES matter.
Wait until your Chariot of Fire has to sweep you from the earth.
Then, and only then, drop your mantle and I’ll be sure to catch it!
Do I want to grow up to be just like you?
Emphatically, YES!
You have never failed to keep growing up in the Power of His Might.
Your “Give ME the Mountain” reminds me of Caleb. That’s how I perceive you!
You wield your spiritual weapons with skill.
That’s the point – you have trained in Righteousness and you appropriate those weapons of your warfare that are mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds.
While many others sit and wish – you exercise the authority given to you in Jesus’ Name! You have used and continued to employ that which God has provided for you to teach the lambs, to encourage the broken in spirit, to promote spiritual and physical healing….and to rally others to the cause.
It’s not a light thing either.  What you are doing now is just as important as those things you did in former years. The emphasis is the only thing that has changed.
You have worked hard and your obedient spirits are compelled to share.
When I think of you, my heart is happy and full.
Indeed, you have set the bar high, but I, for one, am blessed by your ambition.
You have energized my intention to aim high as well. 
I have learned tenacity.  I’ve imbibed worship. Outreach to others is irresistible.
What a joy it is to tell you how much I love you and how thankful I am to you for the rich spiritual legacy you have bequeathed to me!
Your “Daughter,”
Nancy

Smart is Dumb and Dumb is Smart

Customer Service
courtesy photobucket.com
“Stay-fun-compa-say-shun-fay-leep-pay-spickin”
Say what?  His voice was so low, monotone and lifeless; I could barely make out what he was saying.
I chuckled to myself…  Poor guy. 
His job must be thankless and even loathsome at times.  After all, I was calling the California State Compensation Insurance Fund about a payment for Worker’s Comp.   I could envision some of the abrupt, irritated or angry treatment he might suffer from callers who were trying to get their claims managed, or from employers who need help navigating the “system.”
Generally, it’s my habit to try to do as much online as possible.  Dealing with phone reps can be time consuming– especially when I don’t have the liberty of waiting on hold while they check this or that.
Today I could not seem to log on to this particular site, so I was obliged to phone the call center anyway.  Amazingly, I got right through.
When Felipe answered, I knew instinctively that I had been “sent” to intervene in his day! 
“Ohhhh…. Hi Felipe!   Am I glad you answered, I really need your help!” 
I made certain my tone was light and friendly, with a slight hint of urgency that only HE could address. 
I explained to him how the website would not allow me to log on and expressed my gratitude in advance if he could check the info I entered and show me where I had been so daft.  

He laughed!   He brightened and engaged at once! His voice became bold and assertive as if he suddenly awakened to purpose!  That was half the battle right there.

While I am extremely computer and internet savvy, he didn’t know that. My suspicion was that the site, itself, was experiencing some issues.  More to the point, there hadn’t actually been enough info to enter, or to enter incorrectly, to be a problem.
My years in the corporate world had schooled me that to get what I need, I might need to employ some different tactics.   In Chester A Karrass’ famous program, “Effective Negotiating,”  it is observed that, in negotiations, often appearing less knowledgeable is a great strategy.
The other party may willingly jump to fill in some blanks or help with information that may ultimately be what you need.  Conversely, it is bad strategy to act if you know everything. You may squelch your resources.
Therefore,  dumb is smart and smart is dumb!
Also, I’ve learned, that in dealing with people, it is helpful to mirror the attitude you wish the other person to incorporate into their response.  For some people this, takes a lot of work, but most people are suggestive, and when approached amicably and with respect, they rally to be of assistance.
During my phone call, Felipe was quite lively. What a change from his initial demeanor!  My need to hurry through this process took a back seat and allowed Felipe to take charge and show off a little. He had indeed mirrored my attitude with him. 
Funny, but while he was going through his script, the website came up on its own.  I didn’t tell him, though. 
When he finished, I exclaimed, “I’m in!  You’re a genius! Thank you, thank you!”
His elated reply was he was happy to help and that I could call him back anytime! He wished me Happy Holidays over and over. 
My response was “Merry Christmas”, of course. 
“Don’t forget the Reason for the season” I chirped lightly.
“Yes”  Felipe returned.  “Yes!”
We said our goodbyes and I whispered a little prayer for him.  Maybe I’ll get to meet him one day –  on the other side, that is! I hope so anyway.
I sat for a minute longer as the Holy Spirit began to speak to me about how Jesus set aside His glory and came to earth for me.  I felt peaceful, and full.  Jesus always takes time for me.  He demonstrated ultimate Love and Mercy for me so that I could mirror that same Love and Mercy to others.
By the Kingdom’s measuring stick, “dumb” can be interpreted as us exercising humility and laying aside any self-invested ambitions or intentions.  It follows then, that “smart” is God’s child allowing God’s ability and His plan-of-action to work through us to accomplish His perfect plan for the moment.
Looking stupid or seeming inept is not my cup of tea!  Neither is deference.  My flesh hates it!  But, because of Jesus, it has become easier for me to set aside my propensity for always being in charge. For someone else’s sake, becoming a little bit vulnerable often gets my foot in the door for some type of ministry or another.
What a way to enter into someone’s darkness.
Total stealth.  I love it!   To God be The Glory for his Presence and for His Wisdom
 Merry Christmas!

 

Proverbs 11:2 When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with the humble is wisdom.
1 Peter 4:11  whoever speaks, as one who speaks oracles of God; whoever serves, as one who serves by the strength that God supplies—in order that in everything God may be glorified through Jesus Christ. To him belong glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.
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God’s Song Never Fades


Being a child is not something I remember with fondness!  For the most part, my memories are vague, and what I do remember is mostly a wearisome existence.
Don’t get me wrong, there were a few bright moments, but they were soon obscured by a joyless, plodding continuation of survival.
 
School was my one saving grace, however.  I liked school!  In the elementary years, I was able to sing in the school choir, participate in spelling bees, learn folk dancing, and do projects for the science fair along with many more things.
 
Writing a four- page autobiography for my 4th grade teacher was actually an enjoyable task!  While everyone else moaned and groaned, I went for it!  I chuckle now because He must have known that much of what I wrote was contrived. In spite of that, he was very encouraging!  That encouragement kept me on the path of self-development and self-expression through writing!
 
Years later, I was amazed to see that Mr. Guidi had become the celebrated director for the Oakland Ballet.  For years he brought the troop to phenomenal success.  My fourth grade teacher.  I knew him “when”.  Amazing.
 
While at school, I generally felt “normal.“   Lack of proper clothing and shoes was a small concern to me when I was young because there was so much else to occupy my attention.  As I grew in to Jr. High (Middle School), I began to withdraw from things. 
 
Without a coat in the cold,  I was keenly aware of the weather and of the holes in my shoes. Sad to say, but I didn’t always have socks to keep my feet warm, either.  In the classroom, it took quite a bit of concentration for me to keep my feet flat on the floor so that other children wouldn’t notice the holes.  Once in gym class, after I had been teased unmercifully, I determined to try to fade away and just become invisible. 
 
My orchestra teacher seemed to understand some of my personal struggles. Apparently, he felt that he could fan my musical spark.  And that he did!  He started me on violin, moved me to viola and then, right away, exposed me to the cello.  I loved it all!  When I was in the music room, I forgot how I looked or what I was wearing – or even that I would be freezing while walking the 2 miles to my house after school.  I really wanted to learn!  I felt that the angels in heaven must revel in the glory of beautiful music while dancing around God’s throne, and I wanted to be part of that!
 
After about 5 months of this bliss, my wonderful music teacher Mr. Ono left for a vacation to Japan.  He was to be gone a week.  Oh how I missed him!  One week turned into two and then…..he never returned.  The students finally learned that he died in a plane crash on his way home.
 
Tears flooded my eyes and my heart broke.   If that wasn’t enough, the music program was abruptly cancelled.   All my instruments were taken away.
 
Mourning overtook my little spirit and a deep sense of desolation hovered.  My placeat the school had been ripped from me.  The one who believed in me – gone.
 
About that time, my biological father could take no more of my mother’s ongoing illness and our poor living conditions, so he left.   I came home to a dark house, no heat, a still-broken bay window, no food and a sobbing, grief-stricken, bed-ridden mother and no siblings. He took my two young brothers with him.  My sister had run away. Such despair!  Whatever childhood that should have been left for me, flew out the broken window that day.
 
My smile and my hopes made way for more somber duties.  What a mess!  Thoughts clashed. Fearfulness crept.  Anger rose!  Another one who should have been there for me, who should have believed in me, who should have nurtured me – GONE!
 
Through rage and tears, I spotted my father’s guitar.  Although I could not play, it was mine now! 
 
Fast forward to the early adult years.  
With God’s faithfulness, it became clear to me that I could “change things in my generation” for my own children!  Really?
 
God painstakingly worked with me.  He demonstrated that He would restore the years that had been eaten away by ungodly circumstances.  He made it clear that HE would be my Glory.   He would be my Shield!  And that HE would be the Lifter-up of my head.  (Psalms 3).  Then, it was as if He waited for my response.
 
The real Energizer of my soul!  Yes! Yes! I didn’t think twice!  Like lightening, I took Him up on those promises!  I wanted to live in His presence – in His worship.
 
Even though there had been little opportunity for formal training, through all the tears, disappointments and struggles, my Father God kept The Song in my heart.
 
Today, my husband says he gets a big laugh whenever a tune starts up on the radio, at church or via CD.  He says, “You just start in singing without missing a beat.”   Even newer music seems to reside inside.
 
He often quips,  “Is there any song that you DON’T know?”
 
Though I’m not exactly sure how they all got in,  I seem to “instinctively” know the words and tunes to most of the old hymns as well as to a huge number of other songs.
 
Coupled with music throughout my teen and adult years, I am never without a SONG.   I am never without worship! 
 
One time a Pastor looked at me and said, “God has called you as His Psalmist”.  Although he knew nothing about me, I knew he was right.  
Although I have led many a worship service, it hasn’t been about doing it in public.  It has been about ministering healing through song on a one-to-one basis…or just between God and me! 
 
Even now, while I sleep, I hear music. I hear heavenly choirs and I sing along.  I wake up with songs on my lips. I sing words…even those long forgotten….. come right up. I know they have been revived by the Holy Spirit.
 
Such a gift my Father has established in me. 
 
Yes, God never forgot me.  He has truly given my Songs in The Night !!
 * * * * * *
And Hezekiah commanded to offer the burnt offering upon the altar. And when the burnt offering began, the song of the Lord began also with the trumpets, and with the instruments ordained by David king of Israel. -2 Chronicles 29:27, KJV

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