Morning Has Broken…

Mornings like this bring my Grandma to mind. The crispness in the air, looking out over my little patch of earth, I miss her and her way of making me feel so special. Her yard contained the biggest garden, and she tended it faithfully well into her 80’s. I remember little flowers she called sweetpeas, and tall corn, and neat rows of veggies. Her root cellar for the potatoes was like a cool, inviting cave with its deep, earthy smell. From the grape arbor with the huge purple concord grapes, she made the best grape jelly ever. (Sorry, Welch’s, Grandma’s was better!) Just being with her in her little kitchen and home that overflowed with love. I wish she could come help me with my garden! Her home was just as warm and inviting as she was. I always felt loved when I was with her.

I realize now that her garden was her living; her grocery store, and that she had very little financially, yet she seemed content. I regret that I didn’t spend more time with her, but I made choices that took me away from her and the rest of my family. I fought with my Daddy over my choices, and it cost me precious time with him. Even though my parents lived as good examples of God’s command to honor our parents, I chose me over opportunities to spend time with him and my Mom and my family. My rebellion cost me, emotionally, physically, and spiritually. I missed out on so much – the consequences of my decisions, and I have watched from a distance as some of my siblings, and nieces and nephews and cousins have done the same. I want to give each of them (and myself!) a good wake-up shake! Family is precious. Our time on earth with them is limited, and treating each other with disdain and disrepecting our parents is so incredibly wasteful of our lives.

God makes it so clear what we are to do and how we are to act toward our parents: “Honor your father and mother. Then you will live a long, full life in the land the Lord your God is giving you.” – Exodus 20:12 NLT and Deuteronomy 5:16 (http://bible.com/116/exo.20.12.NLT)

  “Honor your father and mother. Love your neighbor as yourself.” – Matthew 19:19; Mark 7:10; Ephesians 6:2-3 NLT (http://bible.com/116/mat.19.19.NLT)

As I read these verses and their background, I saw the following verse. I don’t recall seeing it before, even I have probably read it many times. “For instance, God says, ‘Honor your father and mother,’ and ‘Anyone who speaks disrespectfully of father or mother must be put to death.’ ” – Matthew 15:4 NLT (http://bible.com/116/mat.15.4.NLT)

Does that freak you out a little? It did me! Read on a little further in Matthew:

  “Then Jesus called to the crowd to come and hear. ‘Listen,’ He said, ‘and try to understand.  It’s not what goes into your mouth that defiles you; you are defiled by the words that come out of your mouth… Don’t you understand yet?’ Jesus asked. ‘Anything you eat passes through the stomach and then goes into the sewer.  But the words you speak come from the heart—that’s what defiles you.  For from the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, all sexual immorality, theft, lying, and slander.  These are what defile you…’ ” – Matthew 15:10‭-‬11‭, ‬16‭-‬20a NL (http://bible.com/116/mat.15.10-20.NLT)

 You know what sustains me, even though my own mouth has been a sewer and defiled? Jesus. Without Him I am nothing. By His own words in Matthew 15:4 I should be put to death for my words against my parents. Even though I am the worst sinner who ever lived, I can take my hope for Life through this passage of His interaction with another Gentile woman. 

  “But she came and worshiped Him, pleading again, ‘Lord, help me!’ Jesus responded, ‘It isn’t right to take food from the children and throw it to the dogs.’ She replied, ‘That’s true, Lord, but even dogs are allowed to eat the scraps that fall beneath their masters’ table.’ ‘Dear woman,’ Jesus said to her, ‘your faith is great. Your request is granted.’ And her daughter was instantly healed.” – Matthew 15:25‭-‬28 NLT (http://bible.com/116/mat.15.25-28.NLT)

One of my favorite hymns; Amen.

“My Hope is Built on Nothing Less”
by Edward Mote, 1797-1874

1. My hope is built on nothing less
Than Jesus’ blood and righteousness;
I dare not trust the sweetest frame,
But wholly lean on Jesus’ name.
On Christ, the solid Rock, I stand;
All other ground is sinking sand.

2. When darkness veils His lovely face,
I rest on His unchanging grace;
In every high and stormy gale
My anchor holds within the veil.
On Christ, the solid Rock, I stand;
All other ground is sinking sand.

3. His oath, His covenant, and blood
Support me in the whelming flood;
When every earthly prop gives way,
He then is all my Hope and Stay.
On Christ, the solid Rock, I stand;
All other ground is sinking sand.

4. When He shall come with trumpet sound,
Oh, may I then in Him be found,
Clothed in His righteousness alone,
Faultless to stand before the throne!
On Christ, the solid Rock, I stand;
All other ground is sinking sand.

Hymn #370 
The Lutheran Hymnal
Text: 1 Timothy 1:1
Author: Edward Mote, c. 1834, cento
Composer: John Stainer, 1873, arr.
Tune: “Magdalen”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s