March 19, 2011

Oh How He loves Us So

When things go horribly wrong we raise a fist to God and ask why.  We insist on having answers to the unfairness and cutting through of all we expect and demand in this life.  Why so? 

When all is well - when the children are giggling, the sun is shinning on the glimmering grass,  our money pouch covers the mortgage, 2 cars, and vacations, and love is being made instead of quarrels being had, we revel in our reality that all is as it should be.  Why so?

We live in a fallen world and will live in it until we are birthed into eternal life or until the Lord returns.  Why do we expect heaven on earth now?  Why do we expect this side of the gates made of pearl to be like His side?  Why do we think that the blessings of God are ordinary, everyday normal? And why do we demand an explanation when our expectations aren't met?

We are outraged by perceived injustice, yet underwhelmed by the "eyeryday" miracles of life.

Are we spoiled brats, so lavished upon that we don't even recognize the glory in it all?  We've grown to expect the glory as normal.  Anything less is shocking, demeaning to our standing, undeserved.  If all of these good gifts are run-of-the-mill normal, what is ecstasy?  If we are not stunned by the beauty and goodness of God, then what do we find stunning?  If everything beautiful is demanded and everything ugly is undeserved, what is gift?

"The sun shines and warms and lights us and we have no curiosity to know why this is so; but we ask the reason of all evil, of pain, and hunger, and mosquitoes and silly people.
 ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

Maybe we are the silly people.

This sick by sin world is where we live.  We cannot expect to walk through mire and come out bleached white and untouched.  Dingy, dirty, darkness, will touch our lives.  We live among it.  Our choosing the slick words of Satan in that garden of harmony caused all this mess. But God chose us, even though we didn't choose him. Therefore, graciousness each day so gifted by God, is not normal or deserved.  It is ecstatic, brilliant, elaborate love given as we work to fulfill the meaning of it all.  What is the meaning?  God  planned that our lives should bring Glory to him and that we would be immersed in this world to inject his light.  We are here for him and no other reason.  It's not about us.  We need to stop and realize that dark and depraved is normal in this world, but that God has shed his grace on us, and we should be  awe struck humbled by it. So awe struck humbled that we spend our lives in his presence, glowing from his grace, and reflecting his light.

There are two ways of spreading light; to be the candle or the mirror that reflects it.
 ~Edith Wharton

If there is one spot of sun spilling onto the floor, a cat will find it and soak it up.
~ Jean Asper McIntosh

Let's do the same; let's look for sun spilling onto the floor, and kisses from puppies, and babies holding fingers tight, and pink tennis shoes with tangled laces, and unexpected notes in the mail, and prayer from friends, and birds chirping on the window sill, and homemade pizza, and a stranger smile, and a grandma hug, and golden grass, and light, and all of the other blessings that shed light in this dark and normal world. 

 Let's be overwhelmed with the fact that ordinary is not ordinary at all. 

Why does the sun shine?  Why does soap get sudsy?  Why do I have more than enough food to eat?  Why do I have a job?  Where did this down pillow come from anyway, and where in the world did I get 10 blankets!? I can't believe this man next to me loves me so; how can it be?  My junk drawer is full of a hundred pens - a hundred pens to write with.  Why do I have a roof over my head? Who am I that I should be so absolutely comfortable?  I, like you, am immeasurably loved by creator God.

Why the pain of evil, sickness and injustice?  We live in a fallen world created by our desire to be and have something other than God's best for us.  Why everything else?  Because we are loved by Holy God himself, the God who even finds a miraculous way to use the ugly blackness for our good so that our suffering isn't for naught.  Oh how he loves you and me.

Today I am linking up with:


  1. LOVE that song! Great post!

  2. Your thoughts are so profound, Stephani, and so right-on. Wow.

  3. the words of this song...great. And He really does use the ugly darkness....sometimes though when you're in's so hard to see that He ever could.

  4. Wow!! Great post!

    Oh how He loves us!

  5. Stephani,
    Such a well thought out post with truths that sink deep into the soul and nourish and nurture and inspire to look behond the mundane to see the blessings that abound.
    Thank you for sharing your heart and these truths that can change a life.
    blessings to you, my friend

  6. I found you linked-up to Ni Hao Y'all. I like your blog a lot. I've bookmarked it to read more. Gorgeous photography and inspiring words here shine the light of Jesus.

  7. Sweet girl, after reading this post, I think that I should go outside for awhile and behold the beauty of my dogwood trees.

    And breath in a little of the pollen that I know is there because my car is covered with it.

    Love the pictures from your Friday post!

    Sweet dreams.

  8. Yes,each day is a gift! I love the saying Each day is a gift that's why we called it the present.
    God Bless,

  9. "Underwhelmed by the everyday miracles of life." Convicting. I think I'll take the week to be aware and overwhelmed."

    Blessings on your week...Pamela

  10. "Let's be overwhelmed with the fact that ordinary is not ordinary at all."
    Truth spoken here, Stephani.

  11. OK, Stephani, I had chills reading this. I'm not sure what part to comment on because I would be filling this whole comment box with your original post. Thank you for looking at our world in a different way, so that we could see it too. "If everything beautiful is demanded and everything ugly is undeserved, what is gift?" Seriously, I will think about this all week. God bless you.

  12. Oh Stephani, A quick peek on this thing before bed to see if any of my girls had anything to say today and I am all but standing up and applauding this here in my living room. Yes. I echo your friend, Donna. Truth spoken here.

    Love to you.

  13. That was a great post.

  14. You pose some very good questions and make some very good points. I think we in America are spoiled. We expect things to go well. Thank you for sharing this thoughtful post.

  15. Loved this post. So much to ponder. Guess I've been searching more since we've had so many tragedies this year. It's not that I shook my fist at God or anything, but just felt beat down, wondering if we could catch a break. Now I am able to enjoy the small pockets of peace that come our way without worrying about what the next minute will hold. God is teaching me slowly but surely to rely on Him alone and not be anxious about tomorrow. Thank you for this post; I needed to read it today.


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