The Legend of Annie Bell

 

grayscale photo of woman having breakfast

Photo by Suzy Hazelwood 

She never scoured with tears

Not her face, not her life, not her floor

She was as strong as the Mississippi’s speed

And tougher than the man who made her bleed

 

Relentless in love, quiet and strong was her way

Not hardened but not taking back her living

Until one day she took that shotgun round

The shot that rang out put him in the ground

 

She did not scour herself with tears

She washed herself clean in the blood

She held her head high for her children

That man would never make anyone else bleed again

 

Gray against gray the dawn awakens

abstract ash burn burning

 

When you stand close to His gypsy fire

your heart will hear a blue cold note

He will burn you with his lies

but His truth will hurt the most

 

He has always been a runner

and cares nothing for all he has not been

He will stoke his gypsy fire higher

and steal your heart away again

 

Gray against gray the dawn awakens

the grayest ashes have all turned cold

Just when you believe his dreams were real

you will find to the highest bidder you were sold

I was flayed open with a razor sharp knife

silhouette of girl during evening

Photo by luizclas

He was the only one there in that dark still night

I was flayed open with a razor sharp knife

He said are you ready to rise from the dead?

Through sobs and his blood yes was all I said

 

He said I am the love you are counting on

I am the only One when all  others are gone

I am the one who carries you when you fall

Through doubts and sorrow I’ve paid it all

 

He is the one who  gave His all for me

He fought for me to the bloody end

And on that day when He rose again

He said I am all I have ever been

 

He held me there as life seeped in

He is everything no one else has been

He is my champion, teacher, Redeemer, and friend

He is the one I will count on until the end

 

 

 

 

 

” Knowledge and Truth are not the same, never be deceived by that…” Dr. Hud McWilliams

alphabet class conceptual cube

Photo by Pixabay 

 

I am not anyone’s authority on what they read, or who they listen to or what blogs they like to follow. I just know that for me, a little caution bell went off in my head the other day about “rightly dividing the Word of Truth” and the heavy responsibility that goes with it.
Jesus said, “See that no one lead you astray.” Matthew 24:4
We often think of humility as an awareness of our faults, but humility is an awareness of our limitations.

Here is why I am discerning a red flag in my head and am being led by the Holy Spirit to “check” myself and who I am following.

Over 20 million women (conservative number) are known to follow someone like Glennon Doyle Melton, Jen Hatmaker, Beth Moore, Priscilla Shire, Jennie Allen (If:Equip ministry), Ann VosKamp, Shauna Nyquist, Lysa TerKeurst (Proverbs 31 Ministries) or a group of women under the umbrella of “She Speaks Truth” ministry, and many more on Social Media.
Most of these ladies started out sharing their stories via Blog, or by writing books, and speaking engagements. The things they have to say obviously resonate with women. Whether it is how to cope in marriage, Motherhood, single life, health issues, spiritual issues, sexuality issues or just light subjects like decorating your home or cooking healthy.
This type of teaching and leadership, if you call it that, is taking off in “The Church” culture for women but are often para-ministries meaning they are not under Biblical authority, or are they? You must choose for yourself with the guidance of the very real and present Holy Spirit of God. Just because you agree with some things a woman might say doesn’t make her a Truth speaker.
Truth stands alone,  “outside of us” in our humanity until we become the daughters of God through Jesus Christ the Truth then dwells in us through the third person of the Trinity, the Holy Spirit. We must not lose our humility and always walk in the fact that we are God’s children and we, who follow Jesus, are under his authority. He is Truth, this God/Man is Truth. Truth is a person not an ideal. Truth is not a feeling.
Humility is not seen much in this world. We must believe what God says about us and that is that we were dead in sin. Hopelessly lost, now saved by Grace through Christ Jesus.
Wisdom is always needed.  Not earthly Wisdom but True Wisdom that comes from God.
I read in scripture that Jesus first gives us strong and serious warnings to be aware of anyone’s teaching and the way to measure them is by “whose authority” do they speak, lead, guide, or teach?

So, Jesus said, “When you have lifted up the Son of Man, then you will know that I am he and that I do nothing on my own but speak just what the Father has taught me. The one who sent me is with me; he has not left me alone, for I always do what pleases him.” John 8:28

 

In James 3:1 James implores us “do not run” to teach and/or lead…”Not many of you should become teachers, my fellow believers, because you know that we who teach will be judged more strictly.) These gifts are surely costly gifts and come with heavy accountability before God.

 

What does Wise Living look like? In James chapters 1 and 2 is a pearl for living well and whole and fleshing out what we believe…
The wise woman will persevere


She cannot stop praising God or referencing God in her daily life.

She is slow to speak and quick to listen.


She is gentle, gentle, gentle!


She is a “doer” of God’s Word.


She leads a life of purity, not innocence but purity. There is no malice in her heart. She is not trying to gain reward for herself only for Jesus. We are called to “know Jesus” (intimately), and to make Him known (by our words, actions, and the intent of our heart.)


She does not show favoritism.


She controls her tongue.I

So knowledge without Truth is evil. Truth stands alone without my opinion.  Who I let teach or influence me matters. I shall I my self and all friends out there to take the time to really read and know the Bible so you will not be led astray. I can only hold up each one to the test of God’s Word outlined above.

Thinking on the page…

 

 

 

 

 

I can’t cover up your sin

adult autumn beauty blue

Photo by Pixabay

She said I can’t go through this again

I can’t cover up your sin

Anymore…

 

She just kept walking down the road

Trying to drop that heavy load

Somewhere…

 

Oh the days go better than the nights

The prayers crack through a little light

Sometimes…

 

The storm blows in like a runaway train

Jesus is standing there calling her name

Again…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bell Fright

door wooden bell old

Photo by Little Visuals

 

Her hooded gray blue eyes are unexpectedly bright

She speaks of the “old days, the days of Bell Fright

The terror, relentless ringing in the darkest hour of the night.

 

Communism she says, “did not deliver futures bright.”

Just more betrayal and fear, and torture called Bell Fright.

Not the Nazis, no but Comrades Stalin and Marx

Different regimes but same death toll ringing in their hearts.

 

Haunting broken melodies played on Hungarian violins

She still shivers with the memories of dark dank cells

She says  no one ever knew before  it could be so cold in hell.

 

This poem is inspired by the book Goodbye to Budapest by Margarita Morris and to all who have survived the Bell Fright of dictators of evil.

 

 

Where does Comfort hide on nights like this?

dark darkness loneliness mystery

Photo by Engin Akyurt

Where does Comfort hide on nights like this

when I feel all the loss and the ones I miss?

Comfort dodges me like shadows on the wall

I know I must renew my mind or else I will surely fall…

 

Fall into doubt of my firm foundation

Fall into distortion of Evil’s confrontations

Fall into fear and lies of what lay ahead

 

So I will fight for my heart with His Sword of Truth

I will fan the flame of Faith I have had since my youth

I will rejoice that His Grace is sufficient thus far

and Grace will lead me on as I travel this star…

I will kneel at the foot of His Holy Cross

I will give thanks for all I have gained and not lost

So as the Comforter whispers His command of sweet Peace

The night shadows vanish and all shadows must cease

Now I will rest in the arms of my Heavenly Dad

and fall into the best sleep there is to be had

 

…and be renewed in the spirit of your mind…  (Ephesians 4:23)

Eroding survival default (letting the Spirit of God be my coping skill)

 

red human face monument on green grass field

Photo by Mike

Oh yes I learned at an early age that my face and eyes and smile could paint a picture of self confidence and a surety I could articulate all the answers expected of me. I am after all, my Father’s daughter and “no one” would get next to me…

For years I danced this dance of being strong and able. Of not letting by hurts show. Of being articulate to hide the pain. Of keeping it all together for the sake of…

By God’s grace over the years this survival mode of being all together began to erode away as I grew into the realization I wasn’t made to just survive and I wasn’t made to please others or be strong or lead. I was made in the Image of God to live my life in such a way that He would be known and glorified by it (my life).

Now when I see my self coping with life in that old default survival mode more often than not I can spot it and go to the Holy Spirit for guidance and He is always ready and present. God does not help those who help themselves. Nope. That is recorded nowhere in Scripture. God knows that we cannot save ourselves  which is why, of course, He saves us through His Son Jesus, by Grace, by Mercy, by His atoning blood shed for us. God saves people who think their coping skills are working until they aren’t. God saves us because of who He is not because of who we are or anything we have done. This is a great relief to me and probably any fellow believer in Christ. This truth gives me great comfort every day.

When Jesus told the disciples that He had to return to the Father’s house to prepare a place for us and said he would send us The One who would dwell in us, with us, guide us, and yes give us heavenly coping skills until that glorious day we go to our Father’s House forever.

How are your coping skills working for you? Eroding survival skills are a slippery slope that gives way to dying. God’s way is so much better. I choose not to go back to my comfort zone in order to avoid exposure, pain, or suffering. The cost is much too high so I choose to stand in The One who really did pay the highest price for me.

 

Come Share with Me…

grass field during golden hour

 

Hey let’s bend the light and pretend we’re sitting together on the back porch this September Texas evening. Come share it with me. Share the fact we are getting older and it is a fact we are still learning to love Jesus and man we really don’t love others well without him present. Let’s share our weakness and our strengths and how religious formulas are not why Jesus came for us.
Come share with me that we humans struggle with being exposed. That we try to behave a certain way and look a certain way so that we can belong. Let’s share that we are concerned about aging and health and what our kids and grandkids are facing in their future. Each generation succeeds and fails in some way. Let’s share that doing good is its own reward privately before our Lord. Let’s share sometimes life is so lonely but at other times so joyful we weep and laugh with thanks.
Let’s celebrate our blessings and grieve our lost dreams with humility. Together let’s take ownership of our relationships that failed and the mercy in the ones that succeeded.
Share my sojourn and yours with me. How God in his amazing Grace saved us when we did not deserve it. Let’s bask together in Truth and redemption and healing. Most of all let’s sit humbly and quietly embracing our humanity and God’s lavish unending love and goodness to us. Let’s say we are sorry, we forgive, and we rejoice in all that is this crazy ride called life.
Let’s share this September Texas sunset and Praise The Holy and thank him for the gift of each other and for giving us one more day to learn to love Him and each other better. Will you come and sit a while?

“A friend loveth at all times.”. Proverbs 17:17