Rise Above

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This is the last of my nativity scenes to show you. It was my grandmother’s and has to be at least 40 years old.

Have you ever been asked to rise above; what does it mean?

Asked to step outside of the mold, when the other paints red, you paint geeen.

Ever had to be the bigger person?

For if not, the outcome would only worsen.

When they go left, you go right…for righteousness sake.

And when they start to argue, you do not partake.

You did the right thing and did not stumble.

Have you ever been here and been able to stay humble…?

So many chances to rise above, crime, gossip, shame and yes,  good ole’ anger.

But the only Way we have the ability comes from the One born in a manger.

He came so that we could survive ANY attack

the remedy found in every stripe on His back…

He bore for us all on that predestined day

When He rose above and didn’t respond to what the crowd had to say.

He showed us clearly how to be humble and rise above

when he asked on his enemy’s behalf, for the Father’s love.

Original work by Amy Blount Dec. 2018

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My Heart Remembers

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Last night’s Indiana December sunset

An old enemy of mine has come a’knockin again.

Taunting me, reminding me of my every sin.

He spins around me, above me, and even from within.

A nagging feeling that’s got me jumping out of my skin.

Whenever he’s around, I grit and grind my teeth.

He claws his way around my neck like a tightening wreath.

Then a light, with a small sound, shines out from the dark.

“Child, have you forgotten I can save you from that shark?”

Tears fall as my heart remembers peace of mind and safety from danger.

As my God once again frees me from my anger.

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His Words Ring True

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Ever find yourself sitting with a feeling of self pity?

Ever wonder why you’re dull while others seem so witty?

Can you see others’ paths clearly, while you’re lost in space?

Can you find yourself gripping a mirror staring at your face?

Do you see success, or do you see all the flaws?

Can you imagine a King on His throne as He draws…

on His template, the very image of your face.

Every line, every curve He put into place.

“Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee” His words ring true

“For I know the plans I have for you”

“My thoughts are not your thoughts,” saith the Lord.

“Neither are My ways are your ways,” “…great is your reward.”

“I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee”

“You’ll always be enough…take up your cross and follow Me”

We See You

Chest puffed out, your nose in the air. You think yourself fancy, but we don’t really care.

Skitter around, chittering in every available ear. You tell them what they’ve always wanted to hear.

“Be this, look like that, our group is the bees knees.”  “They don’t know, they don’t fit, off by many degrees.”

Telling them they are the chosen, the elite. Sadly, measuring up-they will never complete…

your demands, your lies you tell. We know they come straight from the pit of hell.

Pride, you go too far, we know who you are.

Pride, at times, you get the best of us all. If only we could remember, after you, always come fall.

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Holy Walk

Most of you that read my musings know that my dad was my oasis in a childhood of let downs and trauma. Most years my dad had a tradition of taking my sister and I to the holy walk in a neighboring town.

A church would put it on faithfully every season. We would drive what seemed like a long distance, to a kid. We would be ushered into the high school gym where we would be put into sections in the bleachers to wait our turn. Most years the wait was very long, or what seemed very long, to a kid. We would then be directed onto school busses and driven to a piece of rural farm property where we would brave the cold and walk through the town of Bethlehem. Roman soldiers yelling and barking orders while our guide dressed in traditional clothing would speak for us as we would go to pay our taxes. We would see vendors, animals and travelers as we would walk the lit path. This ended with Mary and Joseph and baby jesus under a star in a stable. And don’t forget the hot chocolate and homemade cookies in the barn for each of us as we would wait on another fun bus ride filled with singing Christmas carols back to the school.

The tradition slipped away with time and it was something talked about, but never planned. And as you know, drugs, bars and parties got in my way of continuing the tradition…until. Last year I took my two older girls and my mother/law. And this past Friday, my husband and my youngest joined us! It may seem like a small thing to some, or even silly to others. But to me, it feels like going home. I love everything about it. Well, except the cold. It got down to the 20’s Friday night.

I love, love the fact that it’s something I did that my kids can do. I don’t have much of that to share with them. On our Christmas tree there are ornaments my husband made as a boy.  There are toys in the closet he played with as a child. I don’t have that to show my girls. So it just made me feel so proud.

I’ll share pictures with you at the end. But I wanted to drive a point home with this post. First, there were many amish in our group. They watched us curiously throughout…as I, did them. There were also many complaints going up around me, “15 mins a bus, that means we wait an hour and 15 minutes, ugh.” Another complaint was about the cold, and another about the cookies weren’t the kind she liked. But at the end, after we saw Mary and Joseph-holding what I hope to be a baby doll in that cold!- our guide took us to a cross. He spoke of Christ. How Christ was born so he could die for our sins, which I gave an amen to. This action sent the amish girls looking at me so strangely, as it’s not their custom for women to speak out like so. The guide mentioned there were pastors in a tent waiting for anyone with questions on how to be saved behind us. I believe these pastors and this guide to be of a different denomination than mine. That’s when it hit me. Some of us are there because our church is putting on this event, some of us are there because it’s fun and we never get out into the world, and some of us are there to re-create a family tradition…but we were all there that night because we all believe.

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Bundled up and waiting in the gym

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Ever Been Here?

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Driving down the road, professing, claiming and praising.

Giving “it” to God, naming one by one, faith raising.

Ten feet tall by the time I make it to my destination.

Striding valiantly, chin held high, happiness is my determination.

Spreading cheer and joy, giggling and smiling.

A line forms, folders of complaints they bring my way for filing.

Bad news here, “will you pray for me” there.

Behavior papers come home from school, sign here so we know you’re aware.

And like a pit of quicksand my mood gets stuck. Suctioned to the bottom, “Will this always be my luck?”

New day, same road…

Driving down the road, professing, claiming and praising.

Giving “it” to God, naming one by one, faith raising…

 

His Fight

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I painted this set last year. I love the way Mary is crouched down low to see to the needs of her baby.

Tonight I sit with a heavy heart. My enemy thinking he’s so smart.

Matching every move I make. There he sits before me and in my wake.

Haven’t I told him before? Haven’t I told him to mess with me no more?

Whispering lies, on and on he goes. Oh, but wait, he forgot about the blood that flows…

from the cross and through my veins. My Father, my King, forever He reigns!

And even as you read and even as I write, can’t you feel God’s presence reaching you with all His might?

He came as a babe, so humble and low. That He may die, to reap what we sow.

So tonight I now sit with a heart so light. For I know His ways are higher and No More is this my fight!