Saturday, March 29, 2008

What Punctuation Mark Are You?

I am always looking for fun grammar ideas, so when I found this quiz at Fertile Ground, I could not resist taking it!

"You are elegant, understated, and sublte in your communication. You're very smart (and you know it), but you don't often showcase your brillance. Instead, you carefully construtct your arguments, ideas, and theories until they are bulletproof. You see your words as an expression of yourself, and you are careful not to waste them. Your friends see you as enlightened, logical, and shrewd. (But what you're saying often goes right over their heads.) You excel in the Arts. You get along best with the colon.

What Punctuation Mark Are You?

Sunday, March 23, 2008

It Is Finished

According to John's account of the resurrection, Mary Magdalene told Peter and John the tomb was empty. They, then, ran to see for themselves. John 20:6b-7 says, "He (Peter) saw the strips of linen as well as the burial cloth that had been around Jesus' head. The cloth was folded by itself, separate from the linen."

In a Beth Moore Bible study several years ago, I learned that during Jesus' time, it was customary for a carpenter to fold his work cloth and leave it on the finished piece, so the one who had hired him would know the work was finished.

Did Peter remember Jesus' last words on the cross? "It is finished." (John 19:30)

If so, this folded cloth would have sent them a clear message, and it provides a clear message for us today. Jesus is everything we need Him to be because He has done all He needs to do for us.

Happy Resurrection Day!

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Lost Glove -- Lost Sheep

I have a bad habit of putting my gloves in my lap after the car warms. When I get out of the car, the gloves drop onto the ground unnoticed. Sometimes I'm fortunate to find them on the ground by my car when I return to it. Other times, not so lucky --

I lost a pair of leather gloves in Milwaukee at an NCTE convention. My sister had driven from Chicago to have dinner with me and my friends, and upon returning to the hotel, she dropped us off at the door. In a hurry to say our goodbyes, I did not miss my gloves until the next morning.

Another time Jim dropped me off at home before going on to an appointment. When he returned, the car lights illuminated one glove. I was so distressed about the missing glove --black leather with fur trim, a Christmas gift from a student who had no idea I had just lost a pair --that Jim retraced his drive and found it in the gutter of a nearby street. Apparently, it had landed on his Explorer's running board and fell off when he turned the corner. It was wet and cold, but I tenderly "nursed" it back to its original condition, and I still have the pair.

This week I lost another leather glove while out running errands. (I never lose the Big Lots-three-pair-for-$1 kind!) It was 7:00 p.m. when I noticed. What a disappointment, especially since I've been remembering to lay the gloves in the passenger seat or to put them back on before I get out of the car.

I had been all over the city -- Brookside on Kansas City's southside and several places closer to home. Tired and late in getting to my parents' house, I decided to take the time to return to my parking spots at a gas station, the church, and my chiropractor's office. No glove! A trip to Brookside was out of the question, so I resigned myself to the fact that I was gloveless once again. Then as I turned my car to head out of the last lot, my eye fell upon my missing glove. Instead of falling from my lap, it had fallen from my pocket when I retrieved my car keys upon leaving the office. I was soooo happy -- so relieved!

I thought of this glove while reading Matthew 18:12-14. Jesus, talking about how precious children are to God, speaks of a sheperd who will leave ninety-nine sheep on a hill to seek one lost sheep. If he finds it, "he is happier about that one sheep than about the ninety-nine that did not wander off."

As happy as I was to find that glove, God's happiness in having a person come to Him through the love of His Son is infinitely greater than my delight. I'm grateful that He uses the common things of life to remind me of His unending compassion.