Blog Issues & NaNoWriMo Updates

Hello all! 🙂

Firstly, I’d like to cover the blog issues. It looks like for the past few months, every time I’ve attempted to follow a blog, it was rejected. I thought this was a problem with my dial-up Internet and Windows XP system, and since I upgraded, all problems should be fixed. But I realized yesterday that I still could not follow blogs. I contacted support (they were so nice and helpful over there) and they told me that my account had been mistakenly flagged as an anti-spam measure for bulk following, and they fixed it. Therefore, if I made a mention that I was following you and then I disappeared, it was because I thought I was following you but I wasn’t. 😅  I’m so glad this is fixed now!

 


 

And now for the NaNoWriMo update:

I’m a bit behind still, but I’m planning to catch up. 🙂 And I just added an excerpt from my novel. I know that not all of you have NaNoWriMo accounts to view it, so I’m including it in this post so you all can read it if you wish. 😊

“He gives and He takes away; blessed be the name of the Lord. That was Job’s way of dealing with loss.”

She knew now that she had been horribly wrong about Him. Maybe this was not about whether she believed, it was about whether she accepted Him. She was angry with Him; why could He not save the ones near to her?

Her sister’s words returned to her – she had said the same thing years ago, but she brushed them off because she did not want to hear.

It all started to make sense to her. She did not think that He did not exist; she only kidded herself to make Him feel the same pain that she had felt, and in the process, bit off her nose to spite her face.

She would not reject Him any longer. She fell to her knees. Holy is the Lamb. Good is her God. Loving was her Father. All her anger melted away into a puddle and was never remembered again.

Forgiveness was a powerful thing. Her burdens dropped from her shoulders and she felt lightweight, though that could be possible that she also lost weight by now.

But could her parents and sister forgive her? She knew that God was a loving God, and that He forgave because He died so that He could forgive. And defeat sin and death.

But—

She had to believe that they did. She just had to.

She opened her journal to write and realized what day this was.

Her sixteenth birthday.

She almost cried, thinking of what kind of sweet sixteen she was missing out on. And then she did cry when she realized that even if she was home having a party, her family was dead and would not be there.

It would not be a fun party.

She was half glad that she was alone and in survival mode because if she was not, she was sure she would fall to pieces.

She went to the beach and carefully built herself a cake made out of the sand, and found some sticks and stuck them in the top, pretending that they were candles with flames dancing around the wick. She pretended that her family was there with her, and blew out the fake flames.

There would be presents, and she made sandboxes with sand bows on the top and imagined what could be in there. A new purse? New jewels? An espresso maker? Items that she may have taken for granted before, but would be luxurious to have now.

She knew that soon, the high tide would wipe away her cake and presents – any trace that she had even made them. All she would have left were the memories and the memories that could have been if her parents had still been alive.

She walked the island aimlessly. It was hard to get lost; she knew the majority of it and it was so small that if she did lose her way, she could walk until she hit the beach and keep going until she stumbled upon the rocky cove or until she saw the tips of the orange tree.

Happy birthday. Sure. Not anymore. No birthday would ever be the same. It would just denote another year gone by without her family. Another reminder of how much time had passed since the tragedy that changed her life forever.

 

 

Advertisements

I Am Thine

I Am Thine

I’m Thy beloved sheep;
My woolen coat is to be white.
Thy Word I am to keep,
And walk in the path of right.

But my atrocious sins
Made my wool scarlet
As shameful swine’s skin;
Disgraceful as I could get.

But with Thy blood
That was lovingly shed,
Thee, my caring God,
Paid for me instead.

You faithfully sought me
And I am no longer mine;
You lovingly bought me,
Lord, my God, I am Thine!

Psalm 51:7: Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.

No Longer Haunted

No Longer Haunted

Every time I think that I’m dead to sin,
It returns as an undead zombie
Threatening to eat me alive from within
Dying to self is not easy…

Making it stay dead is the hardest part of all
It’s like it comes from the pit of hell
A vampire that tries to feed upon my very soul
And leave me an empty shell…

I’m haunted by the self that I know
I am supposed to be dead to
A spirit of the past that shows
Up when I least expect it too

I want to give up this ghost but I can’t let go
Help my unbelief, O LORD, help my unbelief
This filth, this sin, this horror, is all I know
Let me see Your joy instead of the sins’ grief

I want to live, truly live, for You, Savior –
I can’t do that as long as I’m possessed
By this wickedness inside of my core
I want to be in Your favor, I want to be blessed!

I’m made from dirt, I’m made from sod
Wipe me clean, O Lord, make me innocent
Make me Your child, my Sovereign God
Make me white as the snowy mountain’s ascent

This darkness has a hold of my heart
Its grip threatens to crush me
And with its teeth, tear me apart
I can’t escape even though I want to desperately

Only You can help me, O Lord, only You!

It has me in its chains
That bind me and hold me.
“They no longer reign;
Don’t you know you are free?”

What? If I am free then how–
“You have been free since you believed.
It is in your hands now
Will you of these burdens be relieved?”

You purchased my freedom
So rich in kindness and grace
With the blood of Your Son
Our sins, You forgave.

I will let go, Lord, I will.
They can’t hold me
With Your Holy Spirit, fill
Me with Your humility.

Even at my worst,
You loved me when I didn’t love;
And because You loved me first
You waited to let me crawl back to You above.

I’m to come to You; for alone, I can’t do it.
By my lonesome I’m defenseless and weaponless;
But with You, I have the mighty Sword of the Spirit.
I’m done with the dead; I took Your yoke, and found rest.

I look back now and see how far I’ve traveled
I can’t believe it, it can only be Jesus Christ.
From the clutches of Hell, from Sin, unraveled,
All because of His glorious, humble sacrifice.

Bring my soul out of prison, that I may praise thy name: the righteous shall compass me about; for thou shalt deal bountifully with me. (Psalm 142:7)

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, Who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ: according as He hath chosen us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love: having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, wherein He hath made us accepted in the beloved. In whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace… (Ephesians 1:3-7)

 


 

Hello, WordPress friends! I’m back! I may not get to read blogs again until next week though. If all goes well, we’re moving from dial-up Internet to cable, at which point I will be able to load a blog within a few seconds instead of one every ten minutes. XD (Took about thirty minutes to load my “add new post page” and upload a photo for this post. My awful Internet went from bad to worse which is frustrating, haha.)

There are so many things that I can’t wait to post. I have new photos I’ve taken and new poems I’ve written over the break, and I’ve been nominated for the Liebster Award (Thank you, Celebrate His Love), the Seven Days Seven Photos B&W Challenge (Thank you, Miriam), The Fall Tag, and This is My Genre Tell Me Yours book tag (Thank you Incomplete Thinker – two tags, wow :D)! And if I’m missing any, I’m so sorry; I’m very behind in reading blogs right now; these are the ones I saw. 😅

I hope y’all had a great October! ❤

**Special thanks to Refreshing Spirit who helped me with the “snowy mountain’s ascent” line. 🙂

Chopping Down Idols

Acts 7:41: And they made a calf in those days, and offered sacrifice unto the idol, and rejoiced in the works of their own hands.

My first thought when reading this was, “People don’t make idols anymore like they did back in those days.” But then I really started thinking about this, a lot – and began to see idolatry in a new way.

Leviticus 26:1: “Ye shall make you no idols nor graven image, neither rear you up a standing image, neither shall ye set up any image of stone in your land, to bow down unto it: for I am the LORD your God.”

I take away several things from this verse, but the main one is this. “Ye shall make you no idols nor graven image…” This implies that not all idols are a graven image or image of stone. Therefore I had to ask myself, what kind of idols is it talking about then? Are there things that I sacrifice too much time to, when I should be giving it to God? It can be anything that is put before God. The tricky thing is, there isn’t anything wrong with these examples in normal circumstances: television, social media, money, computer games, food, etc. But they can become problems if they become idols. If they are made into idols.

This certainly put a new perspective on things.

A couple of days ago, my Internet went out for 10 hours, and I was a wreck. How would I talk to my friends? How would I check my email? How would I check who has posted on WordPress? How would I do research for my novel? I was much more frantic than I should have been, and in every activity I tried to immerse myself in, my thoughts came back to it.

Why couldn’t I think about Jesus this much?

I cringed inwardly and was so convicted.

I knew I really enjoyed being online, but I hadn’t realized how much of an idol it had become, getting in the way of studying the Bible and being with family.

First Corinthians 10:14: Wherefore, my dearly beloved, flee from idolatry.

I’m also reminded of Daniel 3:16-18, where Nebuchadnezzar decreed that all would worship the golden image: Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-nego, answered and said to the king, “O Nebuchadnezzar, we are not careful to answer thee in this matter. If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and He will deliver us out of thine hand, O king. But if not, be it known unto thee, O king, that we will not serve thy gods, nor worship the golden image which thou hast set up.”

They were thrown into a fiery furnace that was heated seven times hotter than usual (Daniel 3:19) because they refused to bow down to an idol. They didn’t fear burning or dying for their God. (Even though He saved them, they didn’t know that before going in.)

And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear Him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell. (Matthew 10:28)

I have to ask myself… if I was there with the three of them that day, would I have done the same thing they did? I’d like to think so, but then the conviction hits… when faced with a similar scenario of an idol without an image or a face, would I do the same thing?

They can creep in without us realizing it sometimes, and once they are seen for what they are, they cannot remain. The graven image has to fall. With that being said, I’m going to take a short blogging break to chop down the idol. I plan to return at the end of the month with poems, photos, a Liebster Award acceptance post, and more if things go well. 🙂 Jesus must be the only God in my life, for He is King of kings, Lord of lords, and God of gods.

I’ll miss you guys! I love you all, and I hope that you have a lovely October! ❤

Following Him,
Grace 🌸

 


 

P.S.: I don’t know what the little black wooden figure is supposed to be; I got it at a flea market many years ago (it was in a big box labeled “free”) when I was in my dark Gothic phase, and at the time I thought it was really cool. Now I find it to be really creepy. I am curious about what it is, and what it represents, but there’s another part of me that is unsure of if I want to know… But I thought it might make a good “idol” for this post, anyway. 😅

As Time Goes By

(If this looks familiar to you, I originally posted this last Friday, but then Dutch Goes The Photo posted the photo challenge this week – Hour – so I’m moving the post to today for the challenge.)

As time goes by,
I try to know You more;
Time sure does fly,
As sands from the glass pour!

Decade by decade
I see Your marvelous glory displayed

Year by year
It is You, my Lord, that I revere

Month by month
I wish to be with You, but I’m here for the nonce

Week by week
It is You, my King, that I seek

Day by day
I kneel down before my Lord to pray

Hour by hour
I fall down before Your power

Minute by minute
I know only You, are infinite

Moment by moment
I’m thankful You sent your Son for my atonement

Second by second
I feel Your love for me beckon

 


 

There are 86,400 seconds in a day.
There are 10,080 minutes in a week.
There are 8,760 hours in a year.
There are 521.429 weeks in a decade.

How will you use them?

 


 

** All these photos were taken with my new camera; I was experimenting yesterday with the special effects that are built in. Here is a photo without any effects:

This clock is the last thing that my grandma gave to me before she died, so it’s extra special to me. While going through her old papers, we found the original paperwork from when she bought it, which floored me:

I’ve had the poem written for several months, but I had a lot of trouble figuring out which photos to put with it. Yesterday, it came to me; it just took some time, I guess. 😂

During My Soul’s Swill

During My Soul’s Swill

Father, I’ll hug You tight;
Do what is Your will,
I trust in Your might.

I’m holding onto You
During my soul’s swill
You’ll bring me through!

Cleansed with Your blood,
In Your loving grace,
Oh, how I love You, God,

The comforter of my soul,
Your sweet embrace
Makes me again whole!

The emptiness I once felt
Has been filled; when I think
Of Thy love, my heart melts.

In these oceans of life
I know that I won’t sink
For my Savior is Jesus Christ!


**Swill: clean, wash, or rinse out by pouring large amounts of liquid over or into it.

These photos were taken with my new camera. 🙂

From Prayers To Prose

From Prayers To Prose

From prayers to prose
Like a scent from a rose

Rising to heaven, sacrifices
As the sun over the horizon, rises
The forests comes to life

Enveloped in the Light
Bringing such delight
It’s a welcoming sight
After the darkness of the night

Image debuted in “Mother’s Day Roses.”

From praise to poetry
Like a sapling grows into a tree

Growing heavenward
Branches reaching upward
Creator gives words to the bard

To showcase His creation
His fantastic imagination
To give others elation
In each and every nation

From worship to song
The notes float along

On the lofty breeze
Even the majestic trees
Dance with ease

Make a jubilant sound
Unto the Lord; let joy abound,
Let our voice be heard all around,
Let those who are lost be found!

Image debuted in “Feel No Shame.”


I thought that it might be fun to experiment with rhyming patterns and try something new. 🙂 This one was originally a part of Eclipse; the plan was to start with the early morning and lead up to the Eclipse,  but it just didn’t work out. (The third stanza about the Light was originally about the sun returning after being covered by the moon.) So it ended up becoming its own poem with a different rhyming pattern instead. 🙂