Saturday, October 17, 2020

Burden of Proof

In the late 1500's and early 1600's, Galileo became a scientist that influenced many areas of mathematics, astronomy, physics and philosophy. A devout Catholic, Galileo's understandings of the universe differed with the accepted view that the earth was the center of the universe and the sun and all planets revolved around the earth. Through his studies and observations, he concluded that the earth revolved around the sun. The Pope and the church leaders thought this was heresy. They believed his theories were contrary to the Holy Scriptures. A Roman Inquisition of Galileo forbid him to speak of these theories. Ultimately, he was put under house arrest for the rest of his life. The scientific truth is that Galileo's theory which was proven in time and eventually provided evidence to those who did not believe. Sometimes, giving proof is hard!

Proof is defined as sufficient evidence for a truth statement. "The Sixth Edition of Black's Law Dictionary" explains burden of proof this way:
"Ei incumbit provatio, qui dicit, non qui negat; cum per rerum naturam factum negantis probatio nulla sit . . . The proof lies upon him who affirms, not upon him who denies; since, by the nature of things, he who denies cannot produce any proof."
Atheists and God-seekers alike want proof of God. Doubt inside our frail humanity shouts its insecurity, "How do you know? What proof do you have? Most often evidence is drawn from our experiences combined with evidence from nature. Even the greatest scholars confess the great mysteries of God exceed explanation. So where's the proof?

A great song from the Christian music artists "For King and Country" is called Proof of Your Love. As I listen, the words remind that WE are the proof - you and me, God's children, those of us who identify with Christ, who call Him Savior. OUR LIVES are the proof that God loves! This very sobering thought raises a new awareness in me. What evidence of Christ does my life offer? Does my life story speak the love of Christ?

An old question asks, "What if you are the only Jesus someone sees?" Those who struggle with walking by faith often expect or demand answers to their theological questions. We respond that the Holy Scriptures reveal God and His plan of Grace through faith for all mankind. While we many not understand all that is written within these God-breathed words, God's message is clear. As Christians we are to love God and love each other. Our most true understanding of unconditional love is Christ! We are called to love as Christ loves! The way we love becomes the evidence that we understand God's message. We are the proof of His love! ~ dho

Friday, October 09, 2020

So Many Moments

 


Affirmation of faith:

"We believe that Jesus Christ is Lord. He is the Lord of yesterday, today and tomorrow. He is the Lord over life and death.

We believe that we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us. With His help we can remain faithful when tempted, peaceful when troubled, and loving when opposed.

We believe that in all things we can be more than conquerors. For neither death nor life, neither the present nor the future, neither suffering nor trials can separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord. Amen."

God's love finds us where we are whether we are suffering or shouting hallelujah's! Because God desires a relationship with us, He longs to share in our days, whether they are long and full or hurried and fragile or few and peaceful. God walks with us so closely that sometimes we can miss Him ~ especially when everything seems so easy, so good, so simple. I believe only God can make days like these.

From a familiar hymn, these words remind me to be aware of time:
Take my moments and my days,
Let them flow in ceaseless praise.*

In the week to come, whatever comes our way, I believe we can find God in our moments. Remain faithful and be aware of His presence! ~ dho

* hymn 
Take My Life, and Let It Be

Thursday, October 01, 2020

Encourage Someone Today!




May the God of hope fill you up with joy, fill you up with peace, so that your believing lives, filled with the life-giving energy of the Holy Spirit, will brim over with hope!


I read a modern-day parable:

"Some time ago, an advertisement appeared in which the devil was putting his tools up for sale. On the day of public inspection, each one of his tools: Hatred, Envy, Jealousy, Doubt, Lying, Pride, and so on, was marked with its selling price. Set apart, however, from all the rest, was a harmless-looking tool, well-worn, but priced very high - it was discouragement!“

“Someone asked the devil, "Why is that one priced so high?" He replied, "Ah, that one is more useful to me than all the rest. With it I can pry open a heart and enter, when I cannot get near with any other tool. Once inside, I can lead the person any way I choose. The tool is very worn because I use it on almost everyone, since few people know it belongs to me."

Our sacrifice of praise ~
Encourage someone today! ~dho

Thursday, September 24, 2020

Ordinary Time - September is Childhood Cancer Awareness


Journal entry September, 2011:
This is the Lord's Day! I went to St. Elizabeth's Catholic Church with Linda, Mike and Thomas this morning. Wearing his long white robe and a bandanna with stars, Thomas is an altar server today. He takes his service very seriously and finds deep 
satisfaction as evidenced by his expressions.

This is the 25th Sunday in Ordinary Time. "Ordinary Time" is all the time during the liturgical year, excluding the season of Advent (Christmas through Epiphany) and Lent (Ash Wednesday through Pentecost). I always forget about this phrase but like the image evoked, because we all live most of our lives in ordinary time

After the reading of the Scriptures from the Old Testament and the New Testament, familiar words are spoken: The word of the Lord. Thanks be to God. However, before the reading from The Gospel the response is different: A reading from the holy Gospel according to Matthew. Glory to You, Lord. I like the reply of the people: Glory to You, Lord. 

As is custom, the Lord's Prayer is sung in community. The ending words were my soul's valediction: For the kingdom, the power, and the glory are Yours, now and forever. During communion, these words from the song echoed over and over in my heart as my prayers of thanksgiving were laid on the altar: All my being, bless the Lord, remembering the goodness of God.  

The last song sung was one I had never heard but the words spoke to the core of this journey we must take. It does not feel like it, but we are walking in ordinary time, despite extraordinary circumstances. This journey is not unlike our faith journey, mostly lived out in ordinary time, always seeking an extraordinary Savior. Read the words to the song Enter the Journey, and follow the vision, carry the cross. 

  Enter the journey, come to the song. 
By God you are chosen, by name you are called 
To follow the vision, carry the cross. 
Enter the journey of faith as the family of God. (refrain)

Enter the journey, the way may be long. 
Enter the journey, yet we are made strong. 

God's Spirit will guide us, God's gifts will unfold. 
Enter the journey of hope! 


Enter the journey, though lost and unsure. 
Enter the journey, God's peace will be yours. 

And all who are thirsting will be filled with God's grace. 
Enter the journey of faith! 


Enter the journey, dark is the way. 
Enter the journey, do not be afraid. 

For God's great compassion will give you new sight. 
Enter the journey of light! 


Enter the journey, the old and the young. 
Enter the journey, the kingdom is won. 

By faith now united, as servants we come. 
Enter the journey of love! 

(by Mark Friedman and Janet Vogt)

Glory to You, Lord! ~dho

* Previously posted on BreathingRoomForMySoul.com September, 2011/Donna Oswalt

www.CaringBridge.org/visit/ThomasMcGirrwww.CaringBridge.org/visit/ThomasMcGirr

Thursday, September 17, 2020

Ache for God

My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is
the strength of my heart and my portion forever.

Psalm 73:26 (The Message)

 

I first read Marina Wiedekehr’s book A Tree full of Angels over 15 years ago. “Holiness comes wrapped in the ordinary” grasped my thoughts, conscious and unconscious. She goes on to remind, “Glory comes streaming from the table of daily life.” Her writing of this book is designed to help us see “the Sacred in everyday life.” Wiedekehr, a Sister in the Benedictine community of St. Scholastica Monastery, passed away this spring, April 24, 2020, from a glioblastoma. She certainly had a way with helping the soul find God’s presence in the ordinary. - dho

 Macrina Wiederkehr writes in her book A Tree Full of Angels:

It is time, then, for us to embrace this frail flesh of ours with love. . . What was good enough for God to embrace must be good enough for us. Let us try to . . . stop hiding behind the mask of our frailty. . . The ache for God lives on in our depths. It gnaws at us and cries out to be named. If we walk back through our days, no doubt, we will come upon many frail and glorious moments - places where our poverty and our wealth touched each other. . .

The eye of God beholds so much more than we are able to see in our lives at any moment. Always our goodness and potential loom large under God's gaze. . .We would think it strange to read about a person who died in poverty while having great material wealth stashed away somewhere within reach. Yet how often this is the truth of our spiritual lives!

Thursday, September 10, 2020

God’s Goodness - September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month

Then Moses said, "Now show me your Glory." And the LORD said, "I will cause all My goodness to pass in front of you, and I will proclaim My name, the LORD, in your presence. I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion."
Exodus 33:18-19 NIV

Nine years ago our family prayed its way through a journey of brain cancer, surgery and radiation; we asked God to heal, to strengthen, to comfort Thomas, my nephew then 9 years old. Our prayers and the countless prayers of family and friends and friends of friends also asked for encouragement and energy, for patience and peace, for calm and courage. Holy praises were offered to the Lord for joy in simple things, for small victories, and for laughter. We had not asked God like Moses, "Now show us Your Glory", but He did! God's great goodness passed in front of us! His Glory evidenced in moments and minutes and memories of His never-failing Presence during the journey.



The question of why suffering exists and who is healed or not healed will never be adequately explained or understood by earthly minds. Soon after the beginning, human weakness invited sin to stand between mankind and God. Only through Christ can we ever find a way back into a relationship with God. Even then, we will wrestle with uncertainty and chaos and questions. However, when Christ returns for His people, Certainty and Peace and Truth will reign. For now, we can find this possibility within the heavenly realms, in God, the Creator himself who has all authority. Not bound by time or distance or circumstance, God constantly remains omnipotent, omnipresent, and omniscient. God's ways will always exceed my understanding.

Neither knowing why nor understanding His Ways, I can say for certain that we felt God's mercy and compassion, that we witnessed God's mercy and compassion, that we will continue to tell of God's mercy and compassion. As every petition would rise like incense to this Holy God, each one overflowed with thanksgiving for such undeserved, unmerited mercy and compassion. Truly the Goodness of God passed in front of us, too, during this difficult time. God's goodness and glory still surrounds us - even now in the ordinary, everyday moments of doubt or minutes of disappointment or memories of difficulty. We continue to marvel that God let His goodness pass in front of us. We choose to see God's infinite goodness embracing us each day, especially when we do not understand.~dho


**previously posted on Breathing Room For My Soul/Donna Oswalt 2015


Thursday, September 03, 2020

Praise Shouts!

I'm ready, God, so ready, ready from head to toe,

Ready to sing, ready to raise a tune: "Wake up, soul!" Psalm 57:7 The Message


A years months ago I spent the better part of a day touring Daufuskie Island, just off the coast of Hilton Head, SC. An island full of rich history and Gullah culture merging with renewal and preservation today, my thoughts were captured. We stopped and toured a church still used today, very small by any of the standards of today's churches. Out to the side was a small unpainted, wooded structure not bigger than an outdoor garden shed. It was not original but a replica. Above the door it read "Praise House."

The Gullah people used this little house as a house of prayer and praise. Apparently, the prayers started quiet and as inspiration led, the prayers would become more intense, eventually becoming 'Praise Shouts'! As I thought about that progression of the moving of the Spirit, I wondered how often is my soul moved to the point of Praise Shouts? And when this happens, do I just contain the joy or does my response raise a tune of praise to the Lord?

A sacrifice of praise ~
Psalm 57:9 msg, "I'm thanking you, God, out loud in the streets, singing Your praises in town and country."  Try praising God ~ in public! ~dho

**Previously posted on BreathingRoomForMySoul blog/Donna Oswalt/2010

Thursday, August 27, 2020

Unlikely Friendships

 Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners. Purify your hearts, you double minded. James 4:8 NASB 




In the book entitled Unlikely Friendships by Jennifer Holland, writer for National Geographic magazine, there are nearly 50 stories of animals who become unlikely friends. From an African elephant and a sheep to the owlet and a greyhound, accounts of varied animal species demonstrating unexpected compassion and friendship spill across the pages, not to mention beautiful photography. One story included of a baby hippo and a 130 year old tortoise made the rounds on Facebook a few years ago! They actually have their own book, Owen and Mzee, A True Story of a Remarkable Friendship. In her observations, Barbara King, animal behaviorist, describes Owen's and Mzee's mutual communication as sophisticated, "It's a dynamic dance between two species with no present program on how to deal with each other. And it can't just be instinct, because one was shaping its behavior to the other."

That a Holy God would choose to have a relationship with me, a broken sinner, simply boggles my imagination. This Amazing Grace pours over the dark and ugly parts of my nature making me a new creation in Him. Christ wraps me in a robe of righteousness inviting me to sit at His Table. Jesus says, "As the Father has loved Me, so have I loved you. Remain in My love." Responding, I confess my inability to be good or to love apart from Christ. A spiritual dance begins between ancient holiness and growing faith. My heart desires to be more like Christ; His love teaching me to love completely, His grace influencing me to live abundantly. The Savior and a sinner ~ this is truly an unlikely friendshipone shaping its behavior to the other. dho

**previously posted on Breathing Room For My Soul/DonnaOswalt

Thursday, August 13, 2020

LORD, Help Us Believe!

LEADER: We've been in hiding for too long.

Men: Perhaps we should open the doors of our lives to welcome whatever comes.

LEADER: But suppose that destruction, fear, and death arrive at our door?

WomenJesus always said to us, "Do not be afraid, I am with you."

ALL: LORD, help us believe.

LEADER: Why is it so difficult to believe?

Men: We have been disappointed so many times.

LEADER: Do we dare trust that this time will be different?

Women: Everything is different when we trust in Jesus Christ.

ALL: LORD, help us believe!

LEADER: What will we do if we actually see the risen Lord?

Men: Our fears will be banished, and we will live in the truth of Christ.

LEADER: What is the truth of Christ?

Women: Christ has overcome the bonds of death. He is risen and goes before us.

ALL: LORD, we believe; help our unbelief. Amen.

~Call to Worship, St. Luke UMC

This Call to Worship presents uniquely in that the responses come from men and women individually and then collectively in unity. Why do we distance ourselves from one another, from the community? Disappointment and fear, disease and financial crisis, death and failure create disconnect and doubt within the soul. We cry out, LORD, help us to believe! Trusting in Christ renews the soul and refurbishes the heart. Christ brings joy into the suffering, faith into the doubt, love into the fear, and healing into the loss. We cry out, LORD, help us to believe!

Spiritual struggle knows no boundaries, does not recognize gender, race or age. We ALL struggle! Christ is the Truth that conquers the world with all its rage and wickedness. Christ calls us into relationship with Him and others. Confidence in Christ allows us to fail and start again, weep and find laughter, doubt and believe again. Let my soul reply, I believe; help my unbelief! ~dho

*previously published on Breathingroomformysoul.com in 2014

Thursday, August 06, 2020

Delight

If GOD hadn't been there for me,
I never would have made it.
The minute I said, "I'm slipping, I'm falling,"
Your love, GOD, took hold and held me fast.
When I was upset and beside myself,
You calmed me down and cheered me up.

Psalm 94:17-1The Message

almond blossom

When times of chaos and contradiction take control, the Christian has resources that non-believers do not. In fact, the believer finds the greatest solace in the goodness of God. Despite the fickle offerings of the world ~ hopelessness, doubt, bitterness, defeat, those who claim Christ as Lord can always know the everlasting gifts of peace and comfort. In His arms, in His Grace, we find a goodness in this Holy Love that exceeds the difficult, that soothes the ache, that calms the anxious thought. This is The Source that will always delight my soul. ~dho

When my anxious thoughts multiply within me, Your consolations delight my soul. Psalm 94:19 NASB


Thursday, July 30, 2020

Still In Your Presence

I'm still in Your presence, but You've taken my hand. You wisely lead me, and then You bless me. Psalm 73:23-24 MSG


Holy Father,
Everlasting Light forgive my redundant thoughts. Unfailing Love rescue my reluctant heart. Extravagant Grace fill my repentant soul. Goodness surrounds my every moment, exceeding my vocabulary. You continue to weave an extraordinary tapestry with sacred threads, torn remnants and unspun fibers. All are being woven together by Your Light and Love and Grace. What a masterpiece You are creating - thread by thread, moment by moment, possibility by possibility. Gratitude shouts Hallelujah! A thousand Hallelujahs are not enough. On my knees, LORD, find me on my knees, for You are Great and worthy to be praised! Your presence delights my soul, encourages my spirit, mends my wounds, shows me truth, offers me peace. Lord, be my strength, my shield, my joy! I long to abide in Your presence. Amen.
 ~dho



Thursday, July 23, 2020

Find His Presence

Hear the loon's mournful call in the distance,
Feel the hawk's graceful, slow dance with the wind,
Remember the night sky's luminaries
As they fade when another morning speaks,
And find His presence.


Hear thunder's rumbling call, "Storm Approaching!"
Feel wind's royal power command respect!
Recall the warning; listen to the wind
As darkness struggles to control and shout,

And find His presence.

Hear whispers in the night as angels sing,
Feel holy kisses as His angels pass,
Remember sweet songs of comfort and peace
As mercy makes a home within the soul,
And find His presence.

Hear gentle words offered without reason,
Feel the rhythm of glory-words that praise,
Recall holy words written on the heart
As the Living Word restores hope's voice,
And find His presence.


Hear the empty silence of loneliness,
Feel the wordless sighs of unspoken prayer,
Remember the promise of Perfect Love
As holiness seeks ordinary time,
And find His presence.

Hear the Holy Spirit summon, "Be still!"
Feel the solitude embrace calm's repose,
Recall the mystery and the majesty
As Grace falls softly and shelters the soul,
And find His presence.
- Donna Oswalt/2006

Thursday, July 16, 2020

Called into Community










"Nothing is sweet or easy about community. Community is a fellowship of people who do not hide their joys and sorrows but make them visible to each other in a gesture of hope. In community we say: “Life is full of gains and losses, joys and sorrows, ups and downs – but we do not have to live it alone. We want to drink our cup together and thus celebrate the truth that the wounds of our individual lives, which seem intolerable when lived alone, become sources of healing when we live them as part of a fellowship of mutual care.” Henri J. M. Nouwen, Can You Drink the Cup? (Notre Dame, Ind.: Ave Maria, 1996), 57.

We are called into community through Christ. He asks us to reach beyond our boundaries of our commonality and touch others in His name. While our differences sometimes distinguish us from one another, we are one in Him. Oswald Chambers writes about becoming broken bread and poured out wine. Only through Grace can acts of goodness become broken bread and poured out wine. 


Paul writes: And I keep praying that this faith we hold in common keeps showing up in the good things we do, and that people recognize Christ in all of it.* Circumstance does not create community, rather it reveals its strength, its motivations, its endurance, its depth, its hope. Christ calls believers into community ~ and our response reveals our true faith. I wonder, do people recognize Christ in my acts of goodness? ~dho

*Philemon1:6 MSG

Thursday, July 09, 2020

Making Lemonade!

We all need some positive and uplifting thoughts and stories to remind us of God’s goodness and simple joys. It’s that time of year when kids set up homemade lemonade stands! I think if possible, you should always stop and buy a cup of innocence and hope and entrepreneurship. The smiles they return will be pure bonus! Below you will find a sweet and not-so-usual story of my nephew’s lemonade stand. 

Designed in the spring of 2009, seven year old Thomas drew his plans for his idea. Together, Thomas and his dad built his design the summer of 2009, with Thomas doing all the painting and lettering. This Lemonade Stand served countless everyday boys and girls, moms and dads, strangers and friends, police officers and sheriffs and soldiers, and probably a few dogs. It proudly stood summer after summer on the side of the road just off Main Street in Raeford, NC and spent the winters just off ‘Me’s Road‘ (in the back yard!).

Not many can claim such distinctions, but this Lemonade Stand has been in a parade, traveled to fundraising events, appeared in several newspaper articles, and raised money for child development and a church’s new building, along with bringing awareness to Childhood Cancer and celebrating God’s healing! Even after several updates and fresh coats of varnish, sadly, its time came to an end. Immeasurable memories remain, and the ordinary days of selling lemonade will always echo a time to dream, a time to plan, a time to build, a time of simplicity, a time of purpose, a time of joy, a time of innocence, a time of moving forward… dho
Thomas is now an Eagle Scout, High School Honor Graduate, and college bound this fall! 

Saturday, July 04, 2020

Freedom of “We the People”

Today is the 4th of July, the day America celebrates independence, remembers the signing of the  Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776when "the Continental Congress declared that the thirteen American colonies regarded themselves as a new nation, the United States of America". For those citizens of America, this was the beginning, the foundation of independence. We don't celebrate the the Constitution, signed September 17, 1787, the written footprint of freedom and liberty that empowered and outlined the responsibilities of "We the people". Those beginnings and struggles to define freedom have been followed by decades of great efforts and epic failures to live out this kind of freedom. America is not about a particular place or group of people, rather America is "a radical and unprecedented idea, based upon liberty and freedom for all". (Eric Metaxas, If You Can Keep It)


In reading Eric Metaxas’ book If You Can Keep It, The Forgotten Promise of American Liberty, one finds a combination of choices and conflicts within the promises of liberty. The founders of America's document of freedom, The Constitution, believed that "the idea of total religious freedom was paramount." Metaxas writes about freedom and liberty, government and self-government, about virtue and love of country all being part of what formed America's ideals of freedom and what "we the people" must value. He speaks to the fragility of freedom and the uniqueness of America's government. Metaxas describes the heart of America as "the idea of living for others - of showing them a new way of living." We the people of America have often failed each other, lived too often and too long among the brokenness.


America, with its unique government and struggles to live its principles of liberty, continues to learn and evolve. It is not perfect, nor are its citizens; however, all citizens of America are to be included in the "we" - each to share the burdens and to enjoy the goodness. I treasure the freedom to worship as I choose, the freedom of speech to share my thoughts, the freedom to dream and opportunities to achieve dreams, the freedom to respectfully disagree with some and still remain part of this country. Especially on a day that celebrates independence, with both humiltiy and sadness, I do remember that this freedom has not come without its many wounds, some physical, others pyschological, losses that linger, pain that divides. 

I believe in a God who offers a "radical and unprecedented idea" of spiritual freedom. I believe in a God who loves and chooses to love everyone. I believe in a God who desires a relationship with a sinner like me. I believe in a God who can do all things!  -dho  

** Previously posted on this blog July, 2018/dho

Thursday, July 02, 2020

Real Life in Christ

Consider these words from Colossians, Chapter 3 from The Message:


So if you’re serious about living this new resurrection life with Christ, act like it.  Pursue the things over which Christ presides.  Don’t shuffle along, eyes to the ground, absorbed in the things right in front of you.  Look up, and be alert to what is going on around Christ . . . See things from His perspective.
            
Your old life is dead . . . your real life . . . is with Christ in God.  He is your life . . . [so] be content with obscurity, like Christ.

And that means killing off everything connected with [the old life] . . . a life shaped by things and feelings instead of by God. 

You’re done with that old life.  It’s like a filthy set of ill-fitting clothes . . . Now you’re dressed in a new wardrobe.  Every item in your new way of life is custom-made by the Creator, with His label on it.  All the old fashions are now obsolete . . . From now on everyone is defined in Christ.

So, chosen by God for this new life of love, dress in the wardrobe God picked out for you:  compassion, kindness, humility, quiet strength, discipline.  Be even tempered, content with second place, quick to forgive an offense. . .
 
And regardless of what else you put on, wear love.  It’s your basic, all-purpose garment.  Never be without it. .  . let the peace of Christ keep you in tune with each other . . . Let the Word of Christ – The Message – have the run of the house.  Give it plenty of room in your lives . . . And sing, sing your hearts out to God!  Let every detail in your life – words, actions, whatever – be done in the name of Jesus, thanking God . . . every step of the way.        from Colossians 3 (The Message)

let's pray together...

Adonai ~
You are Lord; You are Father and Son and Holy Spirit, Creator and Redeemer and Counselor.  You are above us and below us, to our left and to our right, before us and behind us. You surround us with abundant blessings, and we are humbled by such generous gifts.  You are in everything and everything comes from You.
 You see our hearts and our motivations, see all that we conceal from the world.  You know our selfish ambitions, our pretentious vanities, our deceitful words.  You hold our deepest fears, our greatest disappointments, our darkest thoughts.  Behind our masks, we struggle with loneliness.  Beside our idols, we long for more. Beneath our veiled hearts, we cry out loud.  And You?  In exchange for what we bring, You offer real forgiveness, real love, real life.  You are Grace and everything happens through You.
You choose us for real life, a life defined in Christ.  You reform our minds, renew our hearts, refresh our spirits.  Taking holy threads of faith and hope and love, You weave a robe of righteousness adorned with purity and holiness.  You wrap us in this exquisite tapestry, every detail shouts of Your majesty.  You are Perfect Love and everything ends up in You.    
We come before this altar with servant hearts.  Solitude surrounds us. Prayers rise to You, our Adonai ~ prayers of hope and possibility, prayers of thanksgiving and songs of praise.  You are in every detail!  Defined in Christ, our souls are made new, for one purpose, for Your Glory!  You are the Central Force that draws our hearts together, for one purpose, for Your Glory!   Let everything ~ everything ~ speak of Your Glory!  In the name of Jesus, the Beloved, Amen. ~dho