Because He remembers you…

Sylvan Sunset

The Lord is merciful and gracious,
slow to anger and abounding in
steadfast love.
He does not deal with us according to our sins,
nor repay us according to our iniquities.
For as high as the heavens are above the earth,
so great is his steadfast love toward those who fear him;
as far as the east is from the west,
so far does he remove our transgressions from us.
As a father shows compassion to his children,
so the Lord shows compassion to those who fear him.
For he knows our frame;
he remembers that we are dust.
Psalm 103:8; 10-14

So great is His steadfast love towards us. His love amazing and extravagant.

And we try to understand it yet sometimes have trouble receiving.

And His mercy trumps justice every time.

In the depths of our depravity He does not give us what we may deserve in return for our sins.

So great is His love!

He takes away our sins and wipes our slates clean so He can start writing a brand new story.

Because He remembers.

He remembers bending low to the earth and scooping up a handful of clay and breathing His spirit into that first man, and then picking a bone from his side to form woman.

He remembers we are dust and we so often get dusty and in the dust His finger writes clean because His blood has washed away our dirt. And when we get dirty again, only our dusty feet will need washing.

Grace restoring and renewing us.

Grace refreshing us as it removes all that binds us and holds us back and holds us down.

His wish is that we soar with Him on the wings of the wind like eagles strong.

And He is strong and true and His love makes us our truest self.

Father tenderly compassionate towards children unruly who one day learn that living by the rules is not restrictive but life giving.

So He laid it down.

Steadfast love bleeding all the way out, that we might live.

But are you? Living, that is? Real living. In Christ.

Or are you just going through the motions. Following your own way.

Maybe today is the day to set your intentions on serving the Most High like never before.

Obeying Him with the faith of a child. Unwavering.

And obedience bringing blessing and honor and life…

~sheila

Available for purchase here.

 

When you want to change your life for the better…

 

NEW Road Ahead

Sometimes I think we stumble on the road ahead because we keep looking behind us.

We don’t see where we are going and we can’t perceive the possibilities.

And when we feel like we’ve messed everything up too much to ever get it sorted out right we get stuck, grow sad, feel lost.

But what if we just glance over our shoulder at what was, learn from it and move on?

Choosing to refuse regret and its companion resentment and leave the land of what might have been. Memories may bring comfort and familiarity might seem safe, but God says in Isaiah 43:18-19:

Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the desert and streams in the wasteland.

Going forward can be a bit of a scary thing, but truly the former is no longer an option and we are not yet where we are meant to be.

And this process of evolution, of becoming the woman or man God has created us to be, of fulfilling our destiny and purpose on earth, will keep rolling us forward, changing us as we submit to God and His higher ways.

Unafraid.

So, with our reason resolved and our foot on the path ahead, let’s get started. The horizon, though bright, is somewhat obscured due to early morning fog. We have only enough sunlight for just the next step.

And that is all we need.

By your words I can see where I’m going;
    they throw a beam of light on my dark path.
I’ve committed myself and I’ll never turn back
    from living by your righteous order.
Psalm 119:105

In faith we travel onward seeking to honor God in all our choices — our words, thoughts, careers, marriage. We realize it’s a trust thing. Either we will trust that still small voice inside our heart or not.

And what are the alternatives if we shut the door of our heart and disavow the call?

We will never be happy standing still where we are.

We don’t want to live our days in frustration, futility and fear.

NEW unstuck

No one likes to get a big fat F on their report card. Considering this report card is for our life! So let’s choose wisely no matter how many times in the past we did not.

And may our hearts respond by saying, “I am going to change my life for the better.”

Now.

One day at a time.

So help us, Jesus.

Pursuing God. And Him with good plans for us filled with gifts of grace great and small all along the way.

I don’t want to finish the race and realize there was so much left undone, do you?

We listen to that little voice inside echoing back to our hearts…it is now or never.

And a chill runs up our spine. We are just a step away from missing the adventure of a lifetime if we don’t move out and on.

While we may stumble a bit on life’s new-every-day journey and at times not know exactly which turn in the road to take, we can’t ever look back again.

The past is gone. The past is over. Old dreams are dead. Bury them at the foot of the cross and let Jesus resurrect a new story, a true story, just for you and just for me.

NEW life ahead

So with a hand over our chest to seemingly still the frantic beating of our oft-times wayward heart, let’s get moving. The fog is rolling back, clouds that darkened our path are lifting and we are beginning to see clearly the road that lies before us.

Marker signs emerge. We make it to the next one and the next. A journey of a thousand miles begins with that very first step.

No time for waiting any longer. Saying so long to what was, we let go. And we keep letting go until we no longer need think about it. Until we hold life with open hands. Receiving.

Getting out of our head for perhaps the very first time in our life, following our heart’s desire that is as old as the foundations of the earth.

NEW DAY

For today is a new day so let’s step into new life with joy and anticipation. Much good is on the path ahead. And He will be right there beside us, leading us. And always loving us.

I’ll show up and take care of you as I promised and bring you back home. I know what I’m doing. I have it all planned out—plans to take care of you, not abandon you, plans to give you the future you hope for.

When you call on me, when you come and pray to me, I’ll listen.

When you come looking for me, you’ll find me.

Yes, when you get serious about finding me and want it more than anything else, I’ll make sure you won’t be disappointed. God’s Decree.

I’ll turn things around for you. I’ll bring you back from all the countries into which I drove you—God’s Decree—bring you home to the place from which I sent you off into exile. You can count on it.
Jeremiah 29:11-14 Message

And we’ll take His hand and trust Him who knows the end from the beginning and is hereto set things Straight in our lives.

And the place we finally get to is the place we were meant to be all along…

~sheila

CLICK HERE to subscribe now. And if this post has helped or inspired you, please share it.

Feel free to comment on our Facebook Longings End page as the comment section here on our website sometimes does not function properly. And thank you for grace as we work on updating our website with a new theme coming in the next few weeks!!! 

Summer slips and life fades when we don’t live slow with intention…

SUMMER 1

SUMMER 2

Sweet and sultry summer leaves us tonight as autumn pushes in with the equinox at 10:29 p.m. EDT.

Days at the beach and laughter long into the night as fire flies flicker has slipped away again.

No matter how hard I try to hold on summer leaves turn the hillside ablaze and the summers of a lifetime slip away just as quickly when we race from one “emergency” to the next, forgetting that our time on earth is a gift.

And life should be lived slowly with great intention.

But a heart can flit like summer fleets until one day with a sudden sureness it’s gone.

Tomorrows that stretched endlessly on the front end of life when it seemed like we were looking out over the ocean on a July afternoon when there was no end in sight to all that water or all that summer are all used up.

We ache to squeeze in one more day at the shore, one more night at the fair, yet time swims away from us and it’s all grace.

FAIR

As 2014 dawned I wrote that our one word was Intentional.

And as the year unfolded my plans for it didn’t. And as Robbie Burns was fond of saying the best laid plans of mice and {wo}men oft times go Gang aft agley.

With October around the corner and my 55th birthday next month and my Michael and me always wanting to honor God more intentionally in our life and our marriage I realize how easy it is to get caught up in the swirl.

But isn’t it not my will but Thine be done? And sometimes God shakes up our agenda in order to wake us up.

And summer overflowed with love in ways we couldn’t anticipate in January.

And sometimes our tempers too as we fought for control, one spouse set against the other.

God is in control.

We need to make our plans but open our hands and pray and set intentions for our life, but we also need to keep our hearts open to God’s greater plans.

Sometimes that means not crossing items off our list but instead loving on our family.

Or running away for a day to celebrate God, and life and love.

For we only have so many moments. We need to savor them before they’re gone.

honey+bees+quote

And my friend, Laura at The Wellspring is releasing a new book next month and her words speak to my heart as they so often do and seem to fit with the focus of my post although I didn’t plan on reading her announcement today.

So God!

There will never be enough summer days to do everything we want to do. And we may not get to cross every item off our bucket lists. And we will always be working on our marriages and others relationships to make them the most God-honoring they can be.

We must choose wisely and listen closely, following our hearts as they heed His call.

For as it is with summer so go the moments of our life…

~sheila

If this post has helped or inspired you, please share it and CLICK HERE to subscribe now.

Feel free to leave a comment on our Facebook Longings End page as the comment section here on our website sometimes doen not function properly. And thank you for grace as we work on updating our website with a new theme coming in the next few weeks. 

 

 

 

When you need to let go…or when life runs full with love, forgiveness and all the colors mingling

GOOD HARBOR DUNES - Copy

These are the moments of our life.

So let’s not waste a single one.

Because they pass as quickly as summer.

Breathe deep.

Think deeper.

And choose wisely.

Know God.

And know that He loves you and me like crazy. No. Matter. What!

Hold tight to all that is dear but know when it’s time to let go.

Say farewell.

Then move forward.

With a tear and a smile.

So much grace.

And gratitude abundant.

For life is a gift in all the thousands of moments, one after the other after the other.

Unwrap each one fully present for they slip away like sand between our fingers.

Vanishing like vapor.

So let’s hold them in our hearts rejoicing more than regretting.

Forgiving all.

And foregoing the grudge so we can be free.

Free to live.

Slowly.

With intention. Like we mean it. Realizing the value of the gift.

Feeling deeply all our feelings yet controlled by none.

Resting.

Letting our hearts be His.

Still, soft and wide open.

Receiving.

So we can give more.

Taking life moment by precious moment as it is not as we would have it.

All glory to God.

Savoring sunrises and sunsets passing in a heart beat.

And life flowing and overflowing like a waterfall tumbling over the edge, spraying rainbows as it crashes below.

Or like a watercolor where broad brush strokes of a thousand tiny dots of color mingle and meld.

Each one touching the other.

Deeply.

And together creating beauty to inspire.

Bleeding into each other.

One.

Blood covering all in Light diffusing softly over mountains misty in the distance.

Rising to meet the sun…

 

The house is sold. Summer is unofficially over. The baton was passed yesterday in a significant shift within our close-knit church family. And after a summer together under one roof my sons {and daughter-in-love} have moved into their next chapters, one flying far away before dawn today, relocating to the West Coast.

BEN TO WASHINGTON 1

BEN TO WASHINGTON 3

BEN TO WASHINGTON 2

BEN TO WASHINGTON 4

All is as it should be even if my heart feels faint.

And what about your heart this morning? Do you feel a tug?

Because letting go can do that to us. It tugs and it tears. And God, He uses it to tether us more closely to Himself.

So are you reaching out to your Lord in your season of letting go?

Yet through all the changes we are under cover.

Banner over us is flapping in a summer breeze, love held high by the One who never changes.

Not in morning sun or evening shadows.

And though my woman’s heart is wistful today, and my Michael holds me long and slow,  and I am tired, physically drained and spent from a season full to overflowing with wonderful, wearying changes — —

I look up and open my hands and my heart. You, too?

Holding on to Him while letting go in love.

Only to receive…

~sheila

If you would like to comment…

In the next few weeks Longings End will be getting a facelift. We’ll be updating our theme and design to better serve you. And we apologize for the current problem we are having regarding leaving comments on the post. Please click over to our Longings End Facebook page and feel free to leave your words there in the interim. Thank you for your patience, understanding and grace. We love you!

 

 

When life gets crazy married couples must intentionally cling and connect…

US

Life can get crazy sometimes.

Busy. Rushed. Exhausting.

And it can start to crowd out the us in marriage.

But as stress levels rise, pulling couples apart, they need to fight against the tendency to isolate from each other and choose to come closer together.

For the crazy busy will just keep rolling — even for those of us who try to keep things simple. And all that crazy can roll right over romance and connection and your friendship with the person with whom you share your life.

No matter how bustling life gets there is always time to slow down for the truly important things.

Like breathing out. Slowly.

Laughing together.

CRUISE1

Or sailing away for an afternoon to remember the day you became one.

And sometimes dancing on a bridge high over the Hudson River. With sunlight streaming. And open blue skies freeing your soul to fly away from all the stress and demands for a little while.

When it’s just you and your man. In his arms. Side by side. Forgetting bills and jobs and even the kids for a bit.

BRIDGE

BRIDGE MUSIC GIRDERS

BRIDGE MUSIC

Making time to just be a couple. Connecting and clinging like in the early days before all the distractions.

For if couples don’t protect their bond they set themselves up for a host of issues. When we get disconnected from our spouse it makes us cranky. We feel all alone in the world. We tend to see their flaws instead of how much they add blessing to our days.

And marriages don’t usually break up in a day.

It takes countless days of careless acts piled one on top of the other until the marriage fades. Bonds that are meant to last a lifetime fray and hearts go to pieces.

And your union gets all shaky.

So, maybe your job requires long hours away from home. Perhaps your working towards an advanced degree in the evenings. Maybe you’re in the process of moving {eeeks!} or just feeling breathless from all the back-to-school activity and fighting the crowds for school supplies.

Whatever the craziness that’s swirling in your marriage…it’s not as important as preserving your marriage.

Things and activities and even careers will come and go. Children grow up and leave the nest. But your husband is your husband until death do you part. Your one-flesh covenant partner.

He is your dearest friend in all the world. The man you make love to. The one you pledged your life to on that glorious day when the world stood still and the stars spun in the heavens.

And protecting and nurturing your marriage honors God, since marriage is His glorious idea and the basis of strong societies.

Don’t let life kill your marriage {or make it strained and sick}.

As hard as you work in other areas, work harder to keep married romance alive.

And here’s to years of happier ever afters…

~sheila

In the next few weeks Longings End will be getting a facelift. We’ll be updating our theme and design to better serve you. And we apologize for the current problem we are having regarding leaving comments on the post. Please click over to our Longings End Facebook page and feel free to comment there in the interim. Thank you for your patience, understanding and grace. We love you!