Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Day 193, July 22

(Continuation of yesterday's post)

Jesus stops in the crowd, looking for whoever touched Him.  The woman slips from her hiding places and comes to fall down before Him.  She confesses that it was she who touched Him and bears testimony that she has been made whole immediately.

She explains this to the Savior.  He tells her, "Daughter, be of good comfort; thy faith has made thee whole."
(Comfort here also refers to the Greek word for courage.)

Nearly simultaneous to the moment of the woman's testimony, Jesus receives word that Jarius's twelve-year-old daughter has died.  His response to the messenger:  "Fear not; believe only, and she shall be made whole."  Jesus hurries to the girl's home.  In another miracle, He raises her from the dead.

But the miracles haven't stopped here.  Stay tuned for tomorrow's post to understand more of what Christ has done.

Joy for today:  knowing that faith can make us whole.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Day 192, July 21

Do you remember the Biblical story of the woman with the "issue of blood?"  In ancient Israel, an "issue of blood" was considered unclean.  The woman suffered from this disease for twelve years.  For twelve years, she is considered unclean.  Worse, according to Jewish tradition, she is not only impure to herself, she also contaminates others, even those who just happen to pass by her.

Her isolation must have been terrible.  Here she is suffering, and then others fear to come near her.  Somehow, she has a bit of money, but, at the end of twelve years, her funds have run out.  As have her options.

Except one.  She has faith.

Through the Israelite "grapevine," she hears stories of Jesus and His ministry.  News of His miracles has spread through the community, and she knows that if she can touch his garments, she will be healed.  In Matthew, we learn that she "said within herself, If I may but touch his garment, I shall be whole."  She manages to do this.

Jesus stops and insists He's felt power leave Him, power that heals.  "I perceive that virtue is gone out of me."  (Luke 8:46).  The word virtue comes from a Greek term meaning "force, power, abundance, or strength."

Instantly, the woman's issue of blood is "dried up; and she felt in her body that she was healed of that plague."  (Mark 5:29)

We will finish this story tomorrow.

Joy for today:  knowing that healing power exists through faith.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Day 191, July 20

Today is my sister Carla's birthday.  Carla and I have always been closer than sisters, more intimate than best friends.  We rely on each other.  We are there for each other.  We simply are.

Though we have much in common, we have some differences as well.  She is quiet and reflective, while I tend to be outspoken.  She is quick to forgive, while I hold onto a grudge like a drowning man holding onto a life preserver.  She is thin, while I am not.

I love her anyway.

The last years haven't been easy for Carla.  The death of her husband, health problems, and just yucky times have challenged her.  But she is still striving, still living righteously.

Joy for today:  loving Carla.

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Day 190, July 19

While at my sister's house, I found a sparkly crown belonging to her seven-year-old granddaughter.  On a whim, I put on the crown and was instantly transformed.  (Well, not really, but I felt transformed for that moment.)

I was a princess.  A beautiful, lovely princess with the world at my fingertips.

I took off the crown, and I was me once more.  But those feelings remained.  Wouldn't it be great if we could all wear a crown for a few moments every day?  If we don't have a crown, maybe we could make one out of paper and glitter.  Or maybe we can just put on our "imagination caps" and see ourselves as princesses.

Better yet, maybe we could lift another up, making him or her feel like they are wearing a crown.  I've written before about lifting others up.  We can do it with a smile, a word, a kind act.

Joy for today:  wearing a crown and helping others do the same.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Day 189, July 18

I set a goal to walk a nearby hill every day.  Sometimes I made it, sometimes not.

What I noticed, though, is that the more I walk it (albeit huffing and puffing), the easier it became.  That is not to say that it's easy.  I still huff and puff.  But I'm not huffing and puffing as much as I once did.

It reminded me of President Grant's quote:  "That which we persist in doing becomes easier; not that the nature of the thing itself has changed, but that our ability to do it has increased."

My ability (miniscule) as it is to walk the hill has increased.  With each step, each breath I took, the task became a little bit easier.

Joy for today:  taking steps, taking breaths.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Day 188, July 17

I found this on my son's blog:  "I am me and for today that is enough."

I love that for several reasons.  First, it resonates deep within my heart and soul.  How often have I said, "I want to be Janet" or "I want to be Amanda" or "I want to be Jeannie" or "I want to be Laurie" or "I want to be Nora Roberts?"  (For those who don't know, Nora Roberts is a mega successful NYT bestselling author.)

The list of people I "want" to be is endless.  In these people, I see all the qualities I lack.  I see talent, determination, compassion, faith, courage, etc.  (What's more, their thighs don't jiggle!)

The trouble is, I'm NOT any of these people.  I'm just me.  And that should be enough because that's who Heavenly Father created.

Joy for today:  being me, warts and all.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Day 187, July 16

Yesterday I wrote about addictions.  As I thought more on the subject, I realized that an addiction is anything that takes me--or anyone--away from the Savior.

The person addicted to pornography has taken steps away from the Savior.
The person addicted to drugs has, likewise, taken steps away from the Savior.
The person addicted to alcohol or tobacco has taken steps away from the Savior.
The person addicted to being unable to forgive (that's me) has taken steps away from the Savior.

Joy for today:  taking steps back TO the Savior.