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The Book Thief
One Thousand Gifts: A Dare to Live Fully Right Where You Are
On Gold Mountain
Bread & Wine: Readings for Lent and Easter
City of Tranquil Light: A Novel
The Distant Land of My Father
The Paris Wife
Bonhoeffer: Pastor, Martyr, Prophet, Spy
Fall of Giants
World Without End
A Stolen Life
Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience and Redemption
The Pillars of the Earth
Sacred Rhythms: Arranging Our Lives for Spiritual Transformation
The Road
Trials of the Earth: The Autobiography of Mary Hamilton
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society
The Accidental Billionaires: The Founding of Facebook, a Tale of Sex, Money, Genius and Betrayal
Cutting for Stone

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The Voice

This week a precious four year old came to my clinic, eyes and nose gushing water. Fever. Body aching. As I stood before him to get a nasopharyngeal swab for a flu test, he hauled off and kicked me like a bucking bronco. That wasn’t the worst part. He coughed effusively in my face. I wandered away with the swab thanking Jehovah I had a flu shot this year. 

Last night I felt the first effects of the love he had shared. Pins and needles inhabited the back of my throat. This morning I lay in bed like a sack of lead. Sam and I decided to watch church from home on live streaming. With a little IT help from J Mac Brown, I got her up and running. 

Sam pointed to Bill Wellons on the computer monitor and said, “I remember when he wore his jeans inside out.” What would Bill have for us this morning from the Word? We have been snailing our way through Luke’s gospel. Chapter 23 finds us back with Pilate. And true to form, Bill had a basin set up and kept washing his hands like he suffered from OCD. 

As he dried his hands, he uttered the point that kind of stuck in my heart. What we do reveals who we listen to. Voices swirl in my head. Just this morning, I had spun out down a bunny trail of blogs on the “purity culture” in the evangelical church. Powerful words cracked open the elephant in the living room. 80% of us enter marriage as non-virgins. I must have had 5 or 6 tabs open reading through the stories. Despair threatened to grab my eyes from behind and pull me down. Even in the raw-honesty and self-disclosure fit for priests and not blogs, I could hear the contempt. One side pointed fingers as they labeled “unrepentant.” The other cast the villain as patriarchal shamers intent on seeing women in burkas before the end of the year. 

So many voices calling for attention and change. So many voices claiming to be right. I felt sad that we have shamed women who haven’t kept themselves pure for their marriage bed. I felt fear that some of the stories of these courageous women would blur the idea of chastity. 

I literally bounced from tab to tab to read as I watched Bill preach. Finally, The Voice called to me. Be still. Sam came over and climbed up in my lap. We snuggled below a furry soft blanket. And as Bill closed, he asked, “What is The Voice saying to you?” We ended by singing In Christ Alone. I raised my hand in worship. Sam emulated. I realized Sam had given me the perfect vision of what The Voice says to me. He lay back on my shoulder little arm raised to the sky. Peaceful. At Rest. Worshipful.

You are loved.

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    gigimuses - gigimuses - The Voice

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