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Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Southern Belle


I recently wrote under one of the pictures I posted on the blog of my wife from one of our many 2 night holidays at the coast.  This particular shot was of my wife sitting on a tree stump at the Fort Ross Lodge on the northern California coast in Sonoma County.  This lodge was probably our favorite because of its proximity to our home town and its reasonable rates.  The caption for the print actually had nothing to do with the occasion of the photo, but was meant to be a humorous comment about some recent actions .
I wrote that in the flavor of our new surroundings, I had given my wife some hominy grits for breakfast and she loved them!  In fact we both had them for breakfast today!  I had initially commented that I didn’t realize that I had a Southern Belle for a wife.  Then as I thought about it, I recalled that the maternal side of Piper’s family were originally from Texas.  And even though they didn’t talk about it much, the south and its culture is in her blood!
On a whim yesterday morning, I looked up Southern Belle on the internet and discovered that the characteristics of this individual included grace, hospitality, confidence and a strong understanding of their place in society as well as the importance of helping those in need.  When I read this I had to smile as my wife exemplifies many of these traits.  Maybe my little joke wasn’t a joke at all!  Most anyone who has come into prolonged contact with Piper would agree to her grace and hospitality toward just about anyone.  When she walked into a room everything and everyone would usually brighten up.  And you would normally find her taking a seat with the ones in the room who seemed to be the mis-understood and/or outcasts.
She was very confident about her place in society… that is in God’s society or in more biblical terms, of her place in the kingdom of God!  She was never hesitant to share God’s love with those in hard places or of her Bible based views on God’s desire to save, heal or turn tough situations around.  Piper has always also been very confident of God’s abilities to work in her, for her or through her in any situations she felt led to pursue. 
That is most likely why we make such a good team!  Once we got our hearts set on what we believed was God’s action for us to take, there was no turning back.  Even the time her folks took her aside and told her that they felt that she needed to stop “this homeschool thing” and get a job.  I think that is the only time that I saw my wife turn serious and a little red in the face as she clearly explained that this was something she would not give up until the Lord told her to.  Needless to say, the subject never came up again… at least in our presence!
Matthew 14:23-34 tells us the story of Peter’s experience walking on the water to Jesus.  The writer tells about how Peter accepted Jesus’ challenge, mustered up the faith, and got out of the boat and walked across the waves.  It also tells of Peter’s slip up as he began to take his eyes off of Jesus and look at the physical circumstances around him.  This action caused him to doubt and he found himself going under!  But Peter knew that Jesus was on the scene and quickly called out to Him for assistance, and Jesus responded immediately. 
I came away from this story this morning with the thought that Jesus really wanted Peter to succeed and that Peter knew that!  That message also reminded me of my wife.  Once she knew Jesus was on her side she was not afraid or hesitant to step out of the security of her boat and walk on the water of whatever situation she felt called to enter into.  I think that this is a lesson for all of us to learn!  I, like you, probably have many family members and friends who are hesitant to step out of the security that they feel their current life affords them.  They talk a good story, but are not living as satisfying, fulfilling and as exciting a life as they would like to. 
What about you?  Do you talk a good story, or are you one to follow Peter’s queue and not be afraid at the thought of possibly getting a little wet?  I’ve been wet a few times, but the Lord has always been there to pull me out, hand me a towel and give me a reassuring hug.  And you know… It’s been worth it!  Have a great day.  Stay in tune to His Word and keep asking yourself… “What or Whom am I expecting today?”

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