Do you 'Butt Dial" God?

Dear Reader,

My father-in-law recently died of cancer. A few days before his death, he requested that his children gather for a family prayer.  One of the sisters in the room, called the out of town sister so she could be a part of it. But the timing was off a bit. So in the middle of the prayer, we hear "Hello....hello...did you butt dial me?" After the prayer was over, a brother-in-law made a comment that he hopes God doesn't say that to him. But then I got thinking....when I "butt dial" someone, my phone just automatically rings the last person I was talking to, or someone who I have in  my easy access numbers.  So maybe it would be a good thing to have prayer be such an automatic response to everything in our lives that it is almost as if we did 'butt dial' God.
Sometimes, when I listen to the prayers of other people, I wish I could pray as eloquently as they do. And that used to prevent me from being willing to pray in public. Speaking is not my gift.  If I really want to get all of my thoughts across to someone, I know that I need to write it down because they can't read my mind.  But in Romans 8: 25-27 it says "In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express. And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints in accordance with God's will."  So I know that no matter how much I stutter and have to search for just the right words, God understands what my heart is trying to say. And of course, the more often I talk to him, the easier it becomes. Along with the more formal prayers, at set times ( devotional time, bedtime, meals)  I find myself talking to God as I am driving down the road, or just going about my day.  Whether it is something I am grateful for, or something I am hurt or angry about, it helps when I take it to God first.  In the margins of my Bible, by 1 Thessalonians5:17 I have written 'God should be the first one you talk to about every detail of your life, he should be your best friend.'
I know that as we have been going through the grieving process, it has been a great source of comfort for me to have such constant and easy access to God.
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Why "Purple and Fine Linen"?

Dear Reader,

A lot of thought goes into choosing a blog name.  You want something that reflects what you want to write about while also reflecting a little of your personality.  You want something that is easy to remember (and find again!). And you want something that is a little bit unique.
I love to read blogs. I have always enjoyed writing, and felt this was something I could do. I just want to write about some of my daily struggles and inspirations and hope that they are an encouragement to someone else besides me. I had felt God gently nudging me to write about some of the lessons I am learning along the way of life for a while. He kept inspiring me with great post ideas reflecting the life lessons I keep receiving. I am not some sort of guru who has all the answers, but I am learning more and more where to turn for the answers. And with a 25 year marriage, and 4 children, I have a lot of life lessons to pull from.

Proverbs 31 Woman

Dear Reader,

I remember reading Proverbs 31 as a young mother and feeling overwhelmed and a bit bad about myself.  The woman described in these verses is a woman with a very strong character, great wisdom, many skills and great compassion.  She is industrious and resourceful. Quite simply, she is amazing.

In case you haven’t read it recently, here is the English Standard Version:

10 An excellent wife who can find?
    She is far more precious than jewels.
11 The heart of her husband trusts in her,
    and he will have no lack of gain.
12 She does him good, and not harm,
    all the days of her life.
13 She seeks wool and flax,
    and works with willing hands.
14 She is like the ships of the merchant;
    she brings her food from afar.
15 She rises while it is yet night
    and provides food for her household
    and portions for her maidens.
16 She considers a field and buys it;
    with the fruit of her hands she plants a vineyard.
17 She dresses herself[e] with strength
    and makes her arms strong.
18 She perceives that her merchandise is profitable.
    Her lamp does not go out at night.
19 She puts her hands to the distaff,
    and her hands hold the spindle.
20 She opens her hand to the poor
    and reaches out her hands to the needy.

21 She is not afraid of snow for her household,
    for all her household are clothed in scarlet.[f]
22 She makes bed coverings for herself;

    her clothing is fine linen and purple.
23 Her husband is known in the gates
    when he sits among the elders of the land.
24 She makes linen garments and sells them;
    she delivers sashes to the merchant.
25 Strength and dignity are her clothing,
    and she laughs at the time to come.
26 She opens her mouth with wisdom,
    and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue.
27 She looks well to the ways of her household
    and does not eat the bread of idleness.
28 Her children rise up and call her blessed;
    her husband also, and he praises her:
29 “Many women have done excellently,
    but you surpass them all.”
30 Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain,
    but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.
31 Give her of the fruit of her hands,
    and let her works praise her in the gates.

See what I mean? Biblical Wonder Woman!  I can’t live up to that!  I think the only part I get right is the purple clothing from verse 22.  ;-) .But a few years ago, I noticed something I had never noticed before.  Verse 30. “Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.”  When I read that, it was almost like God whispering to my heart…don’t worry about all that other stuff child.  If you will focus on your relationship with me, I will help you accomplish all that you need to accomplish. I have given you many gifts and talents, and I will help you use them in a way that will glorify me, drawing others to me through you. 

So, I take life one day at a time.  I spend my time trying to focus on knowing God and applying what I learn to my life. And somehow he takes the jumbled mess I offer and turns it into something beautiful that he can use.  Simply Amazing!

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