What’s your story?

But God cares

Psalm 40:1-3, 17 I waited patiently for the Lord to help me, and he turned to me and heard my cry. He lifted me out of the pit of despair, out of the mud and mire. He set my feet on solid ground and steadied me as I walked along. He has given me a new song to sing, a hymn of praise to our God. Many will see what he has done and be amazed. They will put their trust in the Lord. … I am poor and needy, but the Lord cares for me.

Hey, friend! I know you have a story about God’s care for you. If you share it, others will be encouraged to trust God when they are in despair. And the Lord will be honored.

To help motivate you to post your story on ButGod.blog, I will send the first five responders a copy of Mary’s Diary, a charming booklet written by Karis when she was thirteen that will make a great Christmas gift once you’ve enjoyed it yourself. Karis imagined Mary writing in her diary about her experiences prior to the birth of her son Jesus. Warning: several readers have told me they now think it happened the way Karis imagined it.

In this charming story, Karis imagines she is Mary, writing about her experiences prior to Jesus’ birth

So, remember and tell what God did for you when you were in trouble, as David does in this Psalm. Write no more than a page and send it to me: debrakornfield@gmail.com. If you’re among the first five, I’ll send you Mary’s Diary as a thank you.

I want this blog to be a place where all of us can remember and tell!

Give thanks to the Lord and proclaim his greatness. Let the whole world know what he has done. Sing to him, yes, sing his praises. Tell everyone about his wonderful deeds (Psalm 105:1-2).

What shall I give him?

But God’s beauty shines through nature

Psalm 19:1-2 The heavens proclaim the glory of God. The skies display his craftsmanship. Day after day they continue to speak; night after night they make him known.

When my husband Dave was five, he asked his mother as they prepared gifts for Christmas why, if it was Jesus’ birthday, they were giving gifts to each other instead of to him. She told him the gift Jesus most wanted was his heart. Dave took a while to think about this and decided that on Christmas day he would give his heart to Jesus. So every Christmas is an anniversary for Dave of the day he knew he was God’s child.

Shutterstock: pashabo

If you’re like me, you have half a dozen Advent devotional guides to inspire and challenge you. I’m enjoying one recommended by our assistant pastor, Kevin Antlitz, and gifted to us by our community group leaders, Chris and Elise Massa. It’s a book by Malcolm Guite called Waiting on the Word, A poem a day for Advent, Christmas and Epiphany.

Today’s poem is an unexpected one called “The Moons,” by Grevel Lindop. Scroll down a bit here to read the text. There’s no apparent connection to God in this poem, but if we shift our frame, as Grevel Lindop shows us, we can imagine God as the one who calls us to see in a new way the beauty he has created.

And the poem fits Advent in another way, as we both look back to our past experiences with God, including his Incarnation, and look forward to additional revelations of his grace and truth. And offer back to him the gift he most desires from us, our hearts.