My goodness, but it’s been a very long time since I’ve written anything here! Just under a year, in fact. A lot has happened. Mom has been gone a year and a couple of months. I had no problem dealing with it at all until Christmas, and then her birthday, and then the one-year anniversary of her death. Those days were a little hard, but I have the most wonderful friends, and the most amazing God, and between my friends and God, even those days were much easier than they would have otherwise been.
I’m teaching myself to crochet, and amazingly enough, I’m going to learn how to weave. My Peanuteer friends got me a small rigid heddle loom for my birthday. And one of the cool things about it is that it arrived one week to the day after my birthday, on the day of the one-year anniversary of Mom’s death, so that I had this cool new loom to distract me, instead of having to ruminate on Mom not being around for her birthday, or my birthday, or Christmas, or…, or…, or…, ad nauseam, ad infinitum. I got to assemble it and everything, which was a special treat.
Riverside-Karen is pregnant and is due on June 9th, and it’s a boy. Karen and her husband are naming him Jonathan David. Isn’t that a beautiful name? I’ve already been to one baby shower, and Karen has invited me to another one this coming Saturday. The last one was for family and friends, and Karen says this one is for people from work. So I have to go and get a shower gift. I’ll probably get some 12-month outfits at Carters. I got Newborn, 3-month, 6-month, and 9-month outfits for the last shower, and afterwards Karen told me that she now had enough clothes for every age up to 12 months.
Here’s an update: I ended up not going to the shower because I was exhausted, and couldn’t stay awake. I felt like I was sleepwalking. So I called Karen and told her I couldn’t make it, and she said she understood perfectly. What a relief! She’s fighting exhaustion herself because David is in the hospital and she has to go and visit him all the time. I’m very grateful for understanding friends! She wants me to be there when the baby is born. How cool is that!
I’ve been reading in the book of Romans for my Bible reading. I love the book of Romans because it’s so logical. It’s just chock-full of rich spiritual food. I think Chapter 4 is probably my favorite. I’ve been focusing in particular on Abraham, and the phrase, “the righteousness of faith”. The Bible calls Abraham the friend of God, something I’ve always wanted to be to God, but always felt was impossible.
But maybe the reason I feel that way is because I’m still seeing God through the lens of my father, instead of who He really is, something I don’t want to do anymore.
Anyway, back to the righteousness of faith. The Bible says in Genesis 15:6, (as well as Romans 4:3, 9 and 22, Galatians 3:6, and James 2:22-23) that Abraham believed the LORD and He counted to him as righteousness. For me the passage in James encapsulates it best,
And so it happened just as the Scriptures say: ‘Abraham believed God, and God counted him as righteous because of his faith.’ He was even called the friend of God. ~ James 2:23, NLT.
And Isaiah 41:8-10 says,
But you, Israel, my servant, Jacob, whom I have chosen, descendant of Abraham, my friend — I brought you from the ends of the earth and called you from its farthest corners. I said to you: You are my servant; I have chosen you; I haven’t rejected you. Do not fear, for I am with you; do not be afraid, for I am your God. I will strengthen you; I will help you; I will hold on to you with my righteous right hand. ~ CSB.
There’s a lot to think about in those two passages. God is speaking through Isaiah, and calls Abraham His friend. How wonderful to have God Himself call you His friend! Jesus called the disciples His friends in the book of John. In John 15:15 He said, “No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends…” ~ NKJV.
Also, there’s that phrase again, the righteousness of faith. What that says to me is that God regards our faith in Him as more important than what we do for Him ~ our works, at least in the beginning. Once we’ve become a Christian, what we do becomes more important. At that point, our faith is still important, but works become an outgrowth of our faith. The way I look at it, I’m so grateful to God for saving me that I want to do things for Him out of gratitude. So faith in God is what makes me righteous, and then works follow because I’m grateful to God for His righteousness that He’s given to me as an incredible free gift.
I hope that makes sense…