Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Fortunately, you do not have to hear it, but when my children were babies, I used to sing to them. Rocking them to sleep (except Whit, who would NOT be rocked) while singing a lullaby, is a very fond memory for me, even though it is a bit oxymoronic in nature for them. (Maybe it wasn't the rocking Whit did not like).

There was a short list of songs that I ran through, but my favorite was "Edelweiss." Yes it is from the "Sound of Music," and yes that is a musical, but I like that song. I don't think that Christopher Plummer would have been very proud, however, as I could never seem to remember the words correctly. Of course I never let that stop me. I added and subtracted as necessary, and made rhymes at the right places. It worked. My audience was captive, and did not know of the butchery that was occurring. Perhaps that is what spurred them each to become such musical individuals... or maybe it was a backlash affect. No, music is a giftedness passed to them through their mother.

My first mission trip was to Croatia. I went there in 1998. That trip changed my life, as these trips often do. For the first time I saw how spoiled I was, even though I did not grow up wealthy. My riches were in things I found I took for granted. I had so much that was meaningless in my life until that trip. The Lord raised up in me a powerful desire to see students learn to share their faith, and lead others to Him. Seeing that AHA! moment in their lives is such an incredible thing. Seeing it become part of who they are is a joy.

We had a layover in Switzerland on our return trip. We had a day of sightseeing. I was in the mountains above Grindewald, and the intense beauty I beheld was unequaled. My God, my Creator had done an amazing work in this place. For some outlandish reason, my younger sister Lynae had challenged me to do the whole Maria (from the Sound of Music) spin if I got up into the mountains. I obliged. I spun, and sang "the hills are alive." My teammates even captured this moment on film so that I could prove I had done it (I think the hills were hoping to brandish severe punishment for this vile offense).

There have been few moments equivalent to this one. Hearing the sound of the cow bells clapping as these much heralded animals (in Switzerland) grazed the mountainside was only upstaged when I discovered Edelweiss growing all around me. I am sure I hummed a bit of it as well. Having sung this song for years I wondered what the flower actually looked like. I was rewarded by an array of further beauty as they sprawled across the mountainside. They are a very common, ordinary little flower. Not really all that special to look at. But what impact they have had in my life, in my memories.

You are God's creation as well. Common? Ordinary? Maybe you don't think you are very special to look at. Guess what? God our Creator made you, and He will do extraordinary things through you, if you avail yourself to His will and desire for your life. Don't hold back! Let Him have all of you!!! What an impact He will have in your life, in your memories.

Serving the King beside you,

dad


Yeah Bonnie!!! I am so excited to see how the Lord uses you!

9 Comments:

At 9:05 AM, Anonymous Cedarburg Tina said...

Dear Brent,

Your post today made me chuckle and brought back memories. I remember encouraging my husband to sing to our 2 boys when they were babies. We was very hesitant with the first one b/c he said he didn't know any baby songs. I told him they just need to hear his voice, it doesn't matter what he sings. So, you know what he sang? The theme from the Beverly Hillbillies and Take Me Out to the Ballpark! And they loved it!! In fact, sometimes when they were just a bit older and would be very upset, he would hold them in his arms and start singing those songs and they would calm down right away!

We still joke about it to this day. But it does make me think that our Father in heaven is the same way. It doesn't matter what we say to him or how we say it, He just wants to hear our voice, He wants to have us turn to Him when we need comforting, when we want to share our joys, whatever it is, He just wants US. What a wonderful blessing.

Can't wait to order my cd. Praying for you in Cedarburg, WI. By the way, one of my husband's favorite movies and cds is the Sound of Music!

Tina

 
At 12:19 PM, Anonymous Laura Allyn said...

I know it's been awhile since I last posted... but know that your family is CONSTANTLY on my mind. I continue to pray for you and just marvel at your whole family's obedience to God. You are definitely a motivator to me to keep my desire for God open and growing. Thank you for your continual encouragement on this website. Even though I don't regularly post, I do read the updates daily! And each day I feel the call on my heart to be more obedient to Him.

BJ has definitely been a great role model to me... today I found myself journeling about fear and I started writing about BJ and his witness to the police officers in Peru... I wrote "no matter how large his [BJ's] fear was of these men, his desire to be obedient and his faith combined were so much larger than any fear that could build up within him..." I am truly blessed that I got to serve with him 2 summers.

I pray for your transition to Tulsa; I know moving is never easy, but I know God is with you and He will make it go according to His plan.

 
At 2:03 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your message today moved me beyond measure. You see, I have been feeling sort of ordinary. I am in a spiritual journey that leaves lots of questions unanswered and lots of AH HA moments that I'm not sure how to deal with. I am seriously hearing and absorbing so much, yet am confused by messages that are coming at me. I look to His Spirit to guide. I am in a "renewal" process through my church and had to give testimony the other night. I didn't feel like it made an impact and felt I was evasive about alot of things. Then I got the call from the Director telling me to "put some meat into it". She didn't offend me by this, as I knew it lacked vigor and meaning for those who might hear it at our upcoming retreat. I feel ordinary. How do I make me unordinary? Then I read your blog. Thanks once again for sharing and tapping into realms you weren't even expecting to through Christ and his Spirit.

I must say the only part of my testimony that warranted reaction was when I spoke of BJ and how he has affected my walk with Christ. Lo and behold, tears were flowing and I would find that a coworker of Deanna's would be in the group! She couldn't stop crying. I'm sure she shared with Deanna (she did ask for permission!)

So, I will go to work on my testimony and ask the Spirit to come to me and now, with your words of wisdom -- I am special through Christ our Lord. I will delve deeper in my faith journey
Vicky Ward

 
At 2:06 PM, Blogger Lattany said...

I haven't been good about posting lately, but not because I'm not reading or being impacted by your daily writings.

Your post ministered to me, today. Sunday, I had an experience where I was belittled for what I had said. Not because it was necessarily wrong in the opinion of the belittler, but because they expected differently and would have done it differently, had it been their's to do. Worse, this was someone who's opinion I highly value.

God graciously brought me to a place where I was and am completely content in who I am in Him and what it was I did on Sunday evening. I am fully confident that I followed the Lord's leading, and isn't He my greatest critic?

Lattany
Fairfax, VA, USA

 
At 9:09 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lord, please be with each of these posters that have felt ordinary, belittled, put down, this week. Show them who they are in you. Guard their ears from hearing things that satan throws their way.
Keep us focused!
We love you God!
Your faithful followers

 
At 9:10 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hang in there Lattany! You are being prayed for!! God bless you!

 
At 10:57 PM, Blogger Praying in Pink said...

Brent, I am regularly impressed with the depth of your spirituality. Today, I'm impressed with the breadth of your vocabulary. I can't say that I've EVER used the adjective "oxymoronic"--and I do tend to use a lot of words (the blog family would agree!).

My husband and I have a saying dating back to the early days of our marriage. Back then, many of the things he did seemed just plain WRONG to me. And guess what: some of the things I did seemed just plain WRONG to him,too, oxymoronic as it might seem.

Do you know what? Not many of those things were really WRONG. They had to do with vitally important issues such as how to hang up the bath towels or what foods you ate with catsup or. . Our ways of seeing and doing these things were just . . . DIFFERENT. We, two very different personalities, had been raised in two different parts of the country, in two different families, by two very different sets of parents, and so we grew up . . . DIFFERENT.

Our saying thus became "not wrong, just different." This phrase still comes in handy when one of our particular style or habit preferences rears its selfish little head. It reminds us both not to major on minors.

Sometimes God uses others, especially other believers, to sharpen and refine us--that's a biblical truth. It's also biblical that our words are very powerful, and that we need to watch where and how we throw them. After all, eidelweiss are tiny and delicate. If you run over them (as you might even if you were, say, dancing and spinnning a la Maria), you'll not only miss their beauty. . . you'll crush them.

Praying for my blog family as well as the Higgins family (are you having midterms, Lauren and Whitney?) and, all day today, humming that Eidelweiss song. . .

Marti
(Lattany: how's your nephew doing?)

 
At 11:02 PM, Blogger Praying in Pink said...

P.S. Spellcheck (Brent was right; I was WRONG, not just different): edelweiss.

Marti

 
At 9:07 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Brent & Family,

Hey! I heard your daughter Whitney singing with the college group for the Wednesday Night thing. She has such a beautiful voice! Ive also heard Lauren sing, her voice is just as awesome! Your daughters have great talents..I wonder where they got them from?? =) have a great day!

 

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