Tuesday, December 31, 2013

In the year 2013.

Looking back
searching for the
monuments of victory,
and the spoils
of wisdom
(gained from my mistakes).

I found victory in curious places
as this year I've learned:
being real,
and transparent
is more beneficial in ministry
than trying to be perfect
or hide my flaws.

I've learned
(or rather I'm learning)
not to despise
my weaknesses
God chose to pour His spirit
into clay pots
so that the all surpassing power
would be seen as from God
and not from man.

This year some things
have gotten easier
and other things...
well, harder.
My eye sight,
and hearing are fading.
But as a result,
I'm less critical
(of myself and others)
I don't remember offenses as long
and I listen less to harsh words.

I lost the 35 lbs I gained last year
and I've battled old temptations
where I had won battles in the past.

I'm convinced I'll be battling my old sin nature
till death rescues me from life
and I'm brought to our loving Lord
and given all my hopes have longed for.

I changed churches this year.
and learned (once again)
My ways are not His ways,
and His ways are better.

I've never liked change,
it's always scared me,
but when it's by God's leading
I find rest more quickly.

This year I was confronted
by the frailty of life
and the staying hand of God
as my grandmother lay dyeing
(in Hospice)
and yet I live.
My daughter and I hit a deer
(on my motorcycle)
and it died,
yet we lived.
And close friends suffered
the loss of their parents
while mine live.

God has a time for us all
and I'm convinced
He has a plan
we will not leave till it's complete
and we need to be about His work
till He returns
or calls us home.

I have spent the better part of a year
not formally teaching,
at times it's been a gift
I've cherished
at times I long for the end of this season
because I miss it so much.

This has been a year of change
I think I've learned
(all the best years are.)
And it's been a year of preparation
as I feel my roots have grown deeper
and my branches reached higher
my heart's grown softer
and my mind's been renewed.

Thanks God for the victories on the horizon
and for the battles
you've kept me through.
And thanks for walking with me
(best of all)
My days are worth living
because you sustain me.

c Kim Damon 2013

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Christmas Eve

My kids hate this day.
Waiting gives them a tummy ache,
and makes them a bit stir-crazy.
They see no purpose in it.

I know waiting is hard,
and I'm not fond of waiting myself,
but I see all that needs to be done
and it makes me glad of the last few minutes.

It occurs to me this might be
the key to contentment
while in a time of "not yet".
I want to keep the childlike enthusiasm of
"I can't wait"
and add the wisdom
to be busy
with all that's left to do.

God bless your Celebration
and anticipation,
dear friends!

c Kim Damon 2013

Friday, December 20, 2013

What more can I do?

Have I not surrendered
completely enough?
Have I not repented
unceasingly enough?
Have I not longed for holiness
with enough conviction?

Why do I still see my sin
so clearly?
Why do I still
settle for less than
your good and perfect will?


God I fear at the end of my life
I'll be able to see
all I could have accomplished for Your glory
or all I would have been,
to bring you honor.

all I can do
is surrender
and continue to long
for holiness.
But is that is all I can do?

my Almighty God,
can do all things.
What is impossible
with man,
is possible
with You.

So God,
let me add
to my surrender
that you have indeed taken and cherished
all I have laid at your alter.

Let me add faith
to my repentance,
that You forgive and cleanse me.
that Your grace and mercy are abundant
and free.

And let me add hope
to my longing for holiness,
that others will see past my
sinful self
and see the omnipotent God that chose to reside
in this clay pot.

c Kim Damon 2013

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

I don't mind the frigged cold outside

I love the snow.
I don't mind the frigged cold outside.
It makes me feel like a survivor.
I love this season
and I feel so blessed with my family and friends.

The list is long
of things that "should be done"
but I just put one foot in front of the other
and do each thing.
I know it wont all get done,
and maybe some important stuff
didn't make the list,
that will get done.
But I feel peace and full of joy.

When I heard the cranky child at the store today,
I just wanted to pick him up and hug him.
I wanted to look him in the eyes
and say "it'll be OK, buddy".
When I heard the angry woman who works for the post office,
I thought of what a hard day she's had
and what a lonely life she must live.
And I ask God to help me,
to be a blessing and to not get cranky (too)
but stay joyful.

Who know's joy may be contagious.
Happy Advent, friends!

c Kim Damon 2013

Thursday, December 12, 2013

What does it look like?

I was asking God to help me
"Help me see my life
(walking in Your will.)
What does it look like?
Show me, Lord"

I was thinking about
the gifts lent to me,
and asked:
"How do I walk in ministry
(in Your will?)
Lord, what does it look like?"

I was praying about the church
and wishing all the members
would be set free to use their gifts
(according to Your will).
"Father, show us what this looks like."

I was thinking about how the church
appears to the lost
and asked:
"What needs to change,
to walk by Your Spirit?
What does that look like?"

I believe the Father wants us to see
all these things.
I believe Christ came to show us
(what this looks like).

I see glimpses in my imagination
I hear it's beckoning
when I'm moved by someone's love.
I feel it surrounding me
(when I'm with children),
or when I paint,
or teach.
I hear Him speaking to me
and I'm encouraged by His words.

We live in the already won victory of Christ.
Yet, His glory
is veiled by this life,
so we see
only dimly.

What does it look like?
Lord, continue to show me,
show us,
till we are swallowed up
by newness of life,
to live in the light of your glory
and love.

c Kim Damon 2013

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Will it be enough?

When I look at
monetary shortfalls
and Christmas looming
with all those I love
and long to give gifts to,
I cant help but wonder:

Will it be enough?

Will they come away from the tree
feeling loved;
like someone who knew them well
sought to bring them incredible joy?

At the same time
I'm challenged by those words
in my faith.
In the eyes of my Father,
with all that He wanted me
to do,
to say,
to not do,
to not say,
(in my obedience),
will it be enough?

As a little girl
someone's sloppy docterine
decribed (for me) a scale
with all my good
on one side
and all my sin
on the other.

"Will my good be more than my bad?"
is what little girl me, wondered.
With my good deeds
cancled out by my sin,
I just don't know...

Will it be enough?

Truth is,
I've been crafting.
It stretches the budget
but it also expresses
what I want heard abundantly:
It says: I adore you.
I have sacrificed for you,
given of myself for you.

I dont want to just give
I want to blow my loved ones away
by my love.

And the truth in faith,
is the same.
Christ puts His life on the good side
of that scale
and makes me
good "enough",
but I dont want to be
good enough!

I want the Father
and Jesus
and the Holy Spirit
to know
how much I adore them!

I want to touch
the heart of God,
with my love.

He sits with the broken,
the lonely,
those sick,
and imprisoned,
those in need
(who cant repay).

He lives in a high and holy place
and with those who are broken and contrite,
reviving the spirit of the lowly,
reviving the heart
of those who have been crushed.

as we seek to give
to those whom we love
let us also seek
to lavish our love
on the heart of God,
by loving those in our lives
whom He adores.

For we are God's handiwork
created in Christ Jesus
to do good works,
which God prepared
in advance for us to do.

What benifit is it to you
if you lend to those who can repay you?
Even sinners lend to sinners, 
expecting to be repaid in full.  
But love your enemies, 
do good to them...
Your Father, 
who sees what is done in secret, 
will reward you.

Will it be enough?
No, never...
or yes, always,
but let it be abundantly
more than He would ask
or imagine,
as we give of ourselves
for others.

c Kim Damon 2013

Thursday, December 5, 2013


As we stand in the midst of
the advent season,
perhaps it's best to ask
what this season is all about,
and how we might
grow more holy,
reflect Christ's love more accurately,
and preach the message
(Christ would have us preach)
more faithfully.

Preach (that is)
with our lives
and gifts.

So what is advent all about?
I'm not asking what Christmas is about.
Everyone knows
Christmas is about Christ's birth,
about pretending a large man
in a red velvet suite
gives gifts
to obedient children.

A time to spend too much money
on gifts for people
we hope will love us
and give gifts to us in return.

A time to correct people when they wish us
a “Happy Holiday”
instead of a “Merry Christmas”.
A time to be lonely and depressed
if any of the hopes and dreams
that danced in your childhood mind
have no chance in sight
of coming true.

I'm not asking what Christmas is all about.
I'm asking what Advent is all about.
The candles,
the wreath,
the scriptures
the prayers
what do they all try
(so consistently)
year after year
to teach us?

Advent is the celebration of an event.
The event is God coming,
to walk the earth.
Coming to walk in our shoes,
coming to feel our pain,
coming to be tempted,
and killed,
coming to culminate the purchase
of our souls,
by laying down
His perfectly lived life
and then rising
to conquer the grave.

We celebrate
that He came,
that He will come again.

This time,
coming to claim His bride
and take her home.
Coming to gather those
who have kept watch for Him,
coming to welcome the chosen
into His kingdom,
and banish the powers of darkness
to hell.

So Advent Candles
(lit one per week)
remind us of the gift of Christ's birth
at just the right time,
and they point to His return.

The prophets foretold
of His coming.
Anna, Simon and 3 wise men watched.

Christ will come again,
And He asks us to watch
and be ready and waiting.

Christ is the light of the world
coming (like the candle)
to dispel the darkness,
to give us sight,
and just as the star
lead the wise men to Christ,
so the candles
bid us,
to seek after Christ our Savior.

Just as the shepherds
on the hillside were invited by angels
to come and worship,
so we,
are invited to seek Him out
and worship
and follow
and rejoice.

So let us
celebrate the event of Christ birth,
and anticipate with excitement
His return
Let us live as Christ lived.
Testify to the Fathers love
and faithfulness
as we serve
for the love of our King.

Let us be more holy
that is
more set aside, for God.

Not whisked through this season
with credit cards,
tinsel, and packaging
but focused
on the gift of God.

Telling (like angels)
how He brings peace
to all men
on whom His favor rests.

Let us worship Him
in Spirit and truth
and be set aside
for His use.
Let us reflect Christ,
love more purely
not be diluted,
(rendered ineffective)
by materialism
or love of money,
not seeking the gift,
but rather the Giver.

And let us preach
with words,
the message
of our passionately loving,
tenaciously pursuing,
all powerful,
incredibly merciful,
adoring Father,

and tell how
He showed us his great love,
by sending His son
to save our souls,
and show us
His love
and instruct (by example)
how to lay our lives down
for each other.

God bless our celebration of Advent,
with an joyful anticipation of your return.

c Kim Damon 2013

Monday, December 2, 2013

Just lower the bar

When I woke with things that disappoint me swirling around my mind, I quickly found peace with the decision to lower my expectations. I would just give nothing. And I would expect nothing. I found a peace in that thought. I would no longer wish for things because it made me sad to not see there fruition. I got ready for my day and sat down with my coffee to read. As I prayed and spent time with the Lord, something didn't feel right. I had just lowered the bar, for everyone in my life and for myself so I wouldn't be disappointed. I think I even lowered the bar, for God!

I couldn’t help but feel God would not have me expect less, in order to be happy. In fact, I don’t think I expect enough! The bar should be far higher than I set it (for myself, for others and for God). But even as a child I found this little trick worked great; if I expected nothing, I couldn’t be let down. So it felt natural, and it made sense.

Yet, if God wants the bar higher, if He wants to do more, than all I can ask or imagine, then what's the problem? Could this be the right response... to ask the right question? What's the problem!? What stands in the way of God's will? For me, for others, for God. Let's take them one at a time.

For me: If I cant do what I feel God has called me to do, should I just stop trying? Assume I imagined His will (all that I feel he has in store for me)? Or ask: What stands in the way God? Change me, change the atmosphere, teach me. If I just give up, and lower the bar and decide to do nothing, God is not glorified, I'm not full of joy. I stop striving, but there is a pressing in, a preparing for, a responsibility to the gifts He's given me. I must never give up. My feeling like a square peg in a round whole, is not a reason to give up. But to rejoice, He has a plan, I must pursue. Confession, prayer, longing for, surrender and pursuing all bring God glory and are the pathway to His will.

For others: If I lower the expectation for others, I may not be surprised by the result of low response (or no response). But I'm not calling to the things God has placed in them. I'm not seeking all the good, God has in store for them. I'm not hoping for longing for and rooting for the best for them. That brings no glory to God, no benefit to others. It only saves me a temporary impatient disappointment. Instead, I need to hope, for all things. Build up and encourage, while I commit them to the Lord and seek to speak the fit word at the right moment.

For God: If I give up on the things I long for from God, I am no better than the five foolish virgins who fell asleep while they waited on the Lord and had brought no oil to relight their lamps (upon His return). I must be ever ready to walk obediently into the things of God. And continually thankful for the small things at hand while I wait for the big things I perceive on the horizon.

c Kim Damon 2013