I Stood Outside the Gate ~ Hymn

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I Stood Outside the Gate

I stood outside the gate,
A poor, wayfaring child;
Within my heart there beat
A tempest loud and wild;
A fear oppressed my soul,
That I might be too late;
And oh, I trembled sore,
And prayed outside the gate,
And prayed outside the gate.

Oh, Mercy! loud I cried,
Now give me rest from sin!
I will, a voice replied;
And Mercy let me in;
She bound my bleeding wounds,
And soothed my heart oppressed;
She washed away my guilt
And gave me peace and rest,
And gave me peace and rest.

In Mercy’s guise I knew
The Savior long abused,
Who often sought my heart,
And wept when I refused;
Oh! what a blest return
For all my years of sin!
I stood outside the gate,
And Jesus let me in,
And Jesus let me in.

hereford 077Words: Josephine Pollard, 1870.

That’s Fishy…

028_28-001It’s time for Hodgepodge Wednesday and Joyce has some fishy questions for us this week. I’m eight or nine in this photo and my father was back from a deep see fishing trip where he caught this huge Yellowtail off the coast of Southern California.

1. Have you ever been fishing? Did you catch a fish? If so did you keep it or throw it back? If you haven’t been fishing is that something you’d like to try?

The only fishing I have done is Grunion hunting on the beaches in Southern California when I was very young in the late 50’s. We’d line the beaches in the moonlight and then you’d hear the cry “the grunion are coming, the grunion are coming!” You could see little silvery fish emerge from the waves onto the beach and they would start digging into the sand to lay eggs. We’d have buckets ready and catch them by hand and put them in our bucket. We would then go back to our campground and my mother would cook them on the camp fire.

First, do you know what grunion are? For those not familiar, Grunion are a species of fish that leave the water at night to spawn on beaches during the spring and summer months throughout Southern California. For four consecutive nights, beginning on the nights of the full and new moons, spawning occurs after high tides and continues for several hours. Peak spawning is from late March to early June. Here’s a link to see what grunion looked like on the sand.

Fish out of water, big fish in a small pond, living in a fishbowl, packed in like sardines, this is a fine kettle of fish, plenty of fish in the sea, or cut bait…which fishy phrase most recently applies to some area of your life?

This one is easy, I’m a Fish out of water. We are still trying to figure out if we are truly retired or just unemployed. Every day but Sunday is Saturday at this old house. It’s weird. Dear is here every day instead of leaving to work so my days are up in the air and my roles are up in the air. We are on hold. I know things will come to light sometime in the future. I do enjoy this next kind of fish out of water and on my plate!

the-thames-1102. What’s something you’re always fishing for in your purse, wallet, desk, or kitchen junk drawer?

A pen and something to write on.

3. Your favorite fish tale or movie?

Most fish tales are not my favorites and I find them disturbing like Jaws and Jonah. I did really enjoy the show Flipper!

They call him Flipper, Flipper, faster than lightning,
No-one you see, is smarter than he,
And we know Flipper, lives in a world full of wonder,
Flying there-under, under the sea!

4. Are you sunrise, daylight, twilight or night? Explain why you chose your answer.

I think I’m daylight because of my sunshine tendencies with a smile and always wanting to keep things light.

5. What’s the oldest piece of clothing you own and still wear?

Thankfully it’s not my underwear. I have a pair of vintage warm-up pants I wear for my exercise classes that are my son’s from their junior high and high school soccer days.

6. We’ve got one more month of (officially) winter here in the Northern hemisphere. Are you feeling the need for a getaway? What’s been the best and worst part of your winter so far?

hb-walk-036Our trip to California in January for a beautiful wedding, sweet baby shower, family and friend time and beach walks was the best. The worst part of winter is if I have to drive in snow or ice. Not a fan of slip sliding in a vehicle.

16473741_10212134529706768_6284983107549192089_n7.  The Wednesday Hodgepodge lands on National Margarita Day…will you be celebrating? Frozen or on the rocks? Are you a Jimmy Buffet fan? If so, what’s your favorite JB tune?

13700009_10210144477716712_7053405028671820558_nOnce we get to our son and daughter in law’s tomorrow evening a margarita will be in order for sure. On the rocks with no salt, please.  Not a Buffet fan that I know of. Do you ever wonder who makes up these National whatever days?

8.  Insert your own random thought here.

hellebore-17-003We are close to the season of Lent and I am always so thrilled to see my Lenten Rose blooming during this season. Lent begins on March 1st and I’m considering what I might set aside during this time. Growing up and beyond we did not observe Lent. We always observed Good Friday and Easter in special ways but never really talked about Lent. Lately we have been more contemplative, adding readings and choosing to do without certain things during the 40 days of Lent. Do you observe Lent?

Linking up with Joyce from This Side of the Pond for Hodgepodge Wednesday. Thank you Joyce for asking the questions!

I hope to visit later tonight as we’ll be on the road much of the day. Hand/wrist update: It’s something that should get better without any major intervention. It is feeling better already. Thank you for your thoughts and prayers!

Signs, signs…

Here are some more signs we saw on a recent trip to Snohomish.

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We spent a few hours on the main drag of historic Snohomish shopping in the antique stores and having a meal.

Linking up with Lesley for signs, signs.

Today is the beginning of lent (Ash Wednesday). We didn’t grow up observing lent. In recent years I’ve set aside time to do some readings and try different things to prepare my heart and mind thinking of the sacrifice made for me and for the grand celebration of Easter, the resurrection of my Savior. I read this quote today that made me think a bit deeper on this season of lent. I posted the quote below this collage of my Lenten Rose.

The spirit of penitence in which we enter Lent is not sheer negativity, breast-beating, self-loathing or penitence for its own sake; rather, it is a belated recognition that as friends of Christ, called and loved, and bought with a price by the Most High, we could and should start to grow up into a better way of living and a closer walk with our Saviour. – Malcolm Guite

Do you observe Lent?

Forty Days of Lent…

We are on the letter F for ABC Wednesday and it’s timely for Fat Tuesday and the Forty Days of Lent. Thank you to Denise Nesbitt and the ABC team.

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Today is Fat Tuesday or Shrove Tuesday (feast of pancakes) which means tomorrow is Ash Wednesday. I did not observe Lent growing up but I had lots of Catholic friends in my schools and was always curious as to why they showed up with a black ash mark on their foreheads on this particular Wednesday. When I found out they were giving up gum or candy for Lent I was more curious as to why. So here’s a little overview of what all this means. This article from the Liverpool Echo really covers things well.

During my school days I made a decision to follow Christ. This was the beginning of my faith journey. This decision and my changing of allegiance has not cost me much compared to the 21 Christians who were savagely beheaded by ISIS just because they were Christians. My cost has been mild compared. I’ve been mocked at times, disregarded, and made fun of. Among some people who view themselves as intellectuals I’ve been considered brainless.

I’ve also received many benefits that far outweigh the cost. As my faith grows and I deny some of my own selfish desires I’ve received the fruit of the Spirit like love, joy, peace, patience, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self control. I fail a lot but I’m forgiven and I carry on in faith that God will continue to lead me and help me fulfill all I’ve been called to do. Each day I have to decide to follow Christ or follow me me me. Some days, many days, it’s all about me! Every day He is faithful.

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When Dear and I were in Great Britain last year we visited Hereford Cathedral and I took photos of this Shrine that illustrates Luke 9:23.

And He said to all, “If anyone would come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily and follow me.”

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So…are you eating pancakes today? Do you observe Lent? What are your plans for Fat Tuesday?

There is a Fountain

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There is a Fountain

There is a fountain filled with blood drawn from Emmanuel’s veins;
And sinners plunged beneath that flood lose all their guilty stains.
Lose all their guilty stains, lose all their guilty stains;
And sinners plunged beneath that flood lose all their guilty stains.

The dying thief rejoiced to see that fountain in his day;
And there have I, though vile as he, washed all my sins away.
Washed all my sins away, washed all my sins away;
And there have I, though vile as he, washed all my sins away.

Dear dying Lamb, Thy precious blood shall never lose its power
Till all the ransomed church of God be saved, to sin no more.
Be saved, to sin no more, be saved, to sin no more;
Till all the ransomed church of God be saved, to sin no more.

E’er since, by faith, I saw the stream Thy flowing wounds supply,
Redeeming love has been my theme, and shall be till I die.
And shall be till I die, and shall be till I die;
Redeeming love has been my theme, and shall be till I die.

When this poor lisping, stammering tongue lies silent in the grave.
Then in a nobler, sweeter song, I’ll sing Thy power to save,
I’ll sing Thy power to save,I’ll sing Thy power to save,
Then in a nobler, sweeter song, I’ll sing Thy power to save,

Lord, I believe Thou hast prepared, unworthy though I be,
For me a blood bought free reward, a golden harp for me!
’Tis strung and tuned for endless years, and formed by power divine,
To sound in God the Father’s ears no other name but Thine.

William Cowper, English Poet and Hymnodist, (1731-1800)

Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus ~ Hymn

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Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus

O soul, are you weary and troubled?
No light in the darkness you see?
There’s a light for a look at the Savior,
And life more abundant and free!

Refrain

Turn your eyes upon Jesus,
Look full in His wonderful face,
And the things of earth will grow strangely dim,
In the light of His glory and grace.

Through death into life everlasting
He passed, and we follow Him there;
Over us sin no more hath dominion—
For more than conquerors we are!

Refrain

His Word shall not fail you—He promised;
Believe Him, and all will be well:
Then go to a world that is dying,
His perfect salvation to tell!

Refrain

Words: Helen H. Lemmel, 1922.

Ciao Milano

We got back to the U.S.A. yesterday at four in the afternoon. I thought this eagle from the ceiling of the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele in Milan was appropriate for the transition back.

It’s going to take a few days to recover from my latest adventures especially since the incubated bug I probably picked up 10 days ago on our flight back from California has decided to loom it’s ugly head. Ive also come home to lots of news that I missed being off line for just 48 hours. You never know what a day holds.

During this lenten season I’ve been reading 40 Day Journey with Dietrich Bonhoeffer. Here’s part of the reading from today on the subject of living in community…

We must be ready
to allow ourselves to be interrupted by God, who will thwart our plans and
frustrate our ways time and again, even daily, by sending people across our
path with their demands and requests.

It’s good to be home and to be able to communicate with loved ones in both their grief and their joy. I’m looking forward to reading about what you’ve been up to as I sit on the couch with a tissue stuffed up my nose. Blessings!