The Basic Essential

We have been enjoying a lot of snow since last week and much lower temperatures, too. When one goes outside, furry boots and coats are moving about, but those are actually ladies bundled inside, looking like elegant snow bunnies--- and me, a cute grizzly bear. Haha. Kids get their snowsuits as everyone know that they can't help themselves from rolling about in the snow. And the men? They have their thickly padded jackets that they all look like Iron Man, all muscles with their potbellies or bony frames hidden.

But underneath all these wrappings and trappings are flesh and bone beings, who get hungry and thirsty, need sleep and laughter, who long to love and be loved.

When all the big houses are gone and great accomplishments, and money too, all that's really left is the sky, soil and you. And people, who are no different than you... in the same form as when we first came forth.
After we lost heaven (Genesis 3:19b).

The difference is--- now, we have hope. There is something inside us that was missing and found only in Jesus. Now, we exist not merely to survive but to enjoy every drop of life, because it is worth living. Like a person who is terminal for, basically, we are all terminal--- inflicted with the disease of sin and no hope from death--- but knowing Jesus, our present and future is infused with light, seeing victory over death and the promise that "God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away" (Revelation 21:4). Talk about life made new! This is our reality now and what is in store for us.

My little Roxy is now an incredibly bubbly-babbly toddler. She talks just about anything, and when she has nothing to say, she usually asks me, "Okay, mom?" I have learned to answer, "Yes, baby, I'm okay." Then she sighs contentedly, nodding her head while smiling, "Okay Mom. Okay Roxy." And I cannot help but smile whatever may be my mood at the moment. I have been made okay. I am okay.

Whatever is the circumstances before me when I wake up and whatever comes during the day, I am good for God is good. This is what life is really all about, in its basic form.


* * * * *

Life, though, seems complicated to our finite minds because our world is connected. And there is nothing more complicated than relationships, where connection is needed. But that's how it should be. God made it that way. From the moment the light, the sea, land, heavenly bodies, plants and animals and us were spoken and made into existence, He meant us to care and nourish each other. Just as our home gives us what we basically need, we should care for it in the same way. And with this relationship in mind, God made us humans. We are made to connect and relate with each other, foremost, with Him.

Whatever we do is not a lone act for it goes far more than we can comprehend or are capable of understanding. It is a human version of a motor shunt with the act of collision influencing decisions and actions. Therefore, we need to understand the principles of our actions.

Behind every action is a thought, a belief, and a motive. And every so often we don't give a thought to it, hence, the chaos that exists.

What if... Every thought and motive we have is screened against the Ten Commandments God gave us, which has been summed up in these : "Love the Lord your God... and your neighbor as yourself" (Matthew 22:37, 39)? And if we can't find "love" in the thought or motive behind the action, we abort it? Can we do this?

Like, we know our natural tendency is to give back what one deserves when he/she has done us a great wrong, but placing it against God's Law of Love makes it all wrong. Natural, but wrong. Natural, because our human nature is soaked up in generations of sin. Wrong, because "love is patient, love is kind... is not provoked, thinks no evil" (1 Corinthians 13:4, 5).  Alas! Albeit our best intentions, in our natural selves, we simply can not! Hence, the chaos. Romans 8:7, "For the sinful nature is always hostile to God. It never did obey God’s laws, and it never will."

Knowing our sinful nature and knowing our inability to do good, we cannot just trust ourselves. We only have one hope--- Jesus. Our love for Jesus moves us to surrender ourselves to Him and by faith, live as He lives in us. In the same way apostle Paul lived, "I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me" (Galatians 2:20)

And so, as Jesus said, "If you love Me, keep My commandments" (John 14:15), we humbly give Him our lives and let His will be done. In this manner, we are back to where we come from--- Him--- connected to our Source of Life and all that He has given us in our life.

* * * * *

For the next five years, I am making my home with my family in Russia. It is official. I have been in limbo for the past years, so it is with extreme gratefulness (not to mention great relief of finally leaving behind the sacrifices--- financially and emotionally, and the struggle over uncertainty and bureaucracy) that I meet this good news to be able to simply just be.

Also, ten years ago, I gave birth to my first child and began on my calling as a mother. Now, ten years later on the same day that my son was born, I am granted permission to make my home with my family. The command of the Lord is clear, "Stay." And so, it is with great anticipation that I await what God has in store for me here in the vast and lush soil of--- breathtaking snowy winters and verdant summers, open spaces, jewel-toned nature, rich culture and heritage, beautiful people, and great possibilities.

And just as I came forth from my mother's womb despite odds and with God's hands prevailing, I am certain of only one thing--- as I have no knowledge of the future--- God is Lord and He reigns. Whatever happens to kingdoms, governments, rulers or leaders, and our pretty much confused society, all is well with me for God is good.

Let me share this again:

Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good; Blessed is the man who trusts in Him!
(Psalm 34:8)





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