And when the challenges and losses of life threaten us, it is hard to feel safe.
And when we don’t feel safe it is hard to trust that God is present, let alone in control, let alone good.
Oh we might night say it, but our behaviors often reveal that we are not sure we believe God is who he says he is.
I’m not immune to the struggle. A few days ago Continue reading I Don’t Feel Safe
I’m in the people business
Care for people
Feel for people
Because of this I have to be very aware of how I take in the emotions & pain of others. It can effect me not only emotionally, but physically as well.
Over the last few days a series of losses took my breathe away.
Death of a 26 year old friend of Leisha’s
Death of a 16 year old friend of a friend
Our friend’s 17 year old fighting for his life
Watching our parents process letting go of strength, while mourning each week the death of another friend or loved one.
Watching the girls navigate life and wondering what’s ahead for them and any future generations.
I’m not trying to take on all this pain but I’m struggling about what to do with my own emotions as I create a bigger picture for ministry I know I am part of
That involves more people
There it is!
I fear feeling more.
Then I reflected on the other messages
Continue reading So. Much. Pain.
I’ve read this passage so many times.
I memorized it as a child.
It was given to me in cards and notes over and over again after Leisha died.
God has plans to prosper me- not harm me
God has plans to give me hope and a future.
But I today I read the verse in context of chapter 29.
This is the text of the letter that the prophet Jeremiah sent from Jerusalem to the surviving elders among the exiles and to the priests, the prophets and all the other people Nebuchadnezzar had carried into exile from Jerusalem to Babylon.
First thing I notice is to be in exile is the condition of someone being sent or kept away from their own country, village, home, etc. CAMBRIDGE ENGLISH DICTIONARY
The Lord tells them through Jeremiah to:
Build houses and settle down; plant gardens and eat what they produce.6 Marry and have sons and daughters; find wives for your sons and give your daughters in marriage, so that they too may have sons and daughters. Increase in number there; do not decrease. 7 Also, seek the peace and prosperity of the city to which I have carried you into exile. Pray to the Lord for it, because if it prospers, you too will prosper.
Hmmm? Sounds like God is saying make the most of the situation you are in – whether it is good or not, whether it is where you want to be or not.
Then in verse 10 the Lord says; ”
When seventy years are completed in Babylon, I will come to you and fulfill my good promise to bring you back to this place.
And that is where Jeremiah 29:11 comes in.
For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.
I am quite excited about this word. Over the last 10 years my words have been Hope- Hope & More HOPE! I had that word for several years. It’s a great word, but it was a desperate time for me.
One year the word was TRUST, another year it was BE STILL. (I know technically two words, right?) Last year my word was FINISH which was appropriate since my goal was to complete the Lovely Traces of Hope book.
These were all great words and they were significant to me at the time, but they all had a urgency to them, desperation is still the better word. Even being still was a challenge word at the time.
But this year, the word that keeps coming to me Continue reading New WORD for a New Year
OK! It’s official! I’m an author! I held my first book signing thanks to the gracious and persistent Tanya Augsburger of the Bluffton Public Library, Bluffton, OH.
Months ago- before there was an actual book, Tanya engaged me to consider hosting an author event at the library. I thought she was jumping the gun, but I appreciated her thinking ahead for me. It was a delight for me to work with Tanya to put together this book signing event. I am so grateful for her and the Library for hosting this opportunity.
I knew that book signings were often part of an author’s next steps. I knew that it was valuable to connect with interested and potential new readers.
But I witnessed so much BEAUTY in this moment and in the people who attended. Continue reading The Beauty of Signing a Book!
Ten years ago next weekend, we gathered to remember a spunky little gal named Leisha.
We celebrated her life And mourned our loss of her.
We remembered the things she didTo make us laugh
To make us cry,
To make us crazy!
She touched our lives and she taught us,
She changed us in the living and the dying.
Would she have made such a difference in our lives if she had just lived? I know I’m her momma, but I think so.
The day she died, I met her on our country road. I was teasing her because she was so eager to get her driver’s permit. I said,” you just want power. ”
I could see the wheels spinning in her head and her eyes were sparkling.
She spoke, “I don’t need power. I want to influence. I want to say, I’m going come with me.”
“Honey you were made to influence,” I replied as I stroked her nose like I had so many days since she was born.
10 minutes later, she was gone.I want to influence. I want to say, I'm going come with me. Click To Tweet
Well, dandelions have long been important at the Burrus house.
For one thing, Continue reading Influence Like a Dandelion
This past week, I have been working intently to finish up details for publishing the Lovely Traces of Hope book. I had one of those moments as I sat late into the night reading/ editing/ proofing yet again through my own story.
For the umpteenth time, I was reading through Chapter 14, Turning East, which I have sent to many of you already. (Click here if you haven’t read it yet.) In that chapter, I share excerpts of Jerry Sittser’s book called A Grace Disguised. Jerry literally led me through much of my grief through the sharing of his own story.
Several months ago as I was reworking that chapter for the book, I sent Jerry a letter to thank him for being bold enough to share his story because of the influence it has had in mine.
Here was his reply…