Category Archives: Service

Moving Mountains

 

 

I cannot move this mountain, Lord; it is way too deep, too wide. I’ve toiled until my bones do ache, ‘til way past eventide. I cannot go around, dear Lord, a chasm’s in the way. There is no bridge for me to cross, no ferry in the bay.

I cannot climb, it’s way too steep, the rock face sheer and bare. There are no trees for me to grasp, no foot holes anywhere. How can I fill this mission, Lord, for I am but a man? My strength is not enough, dear Lord, I need a helping hand.

Oh, my son, you did not hear, when I called for help today. You were too busy toiling to hold a light and show the way. You were more concerned about the matters nigh at hand, the mountain right in front of you, than the needs of your fellow man.

How can I lend a hand to you when you have turned your back on those who need my love through you, who daily needs do lack? Go and serve them, then come back, and you will surely see, that we can move this mountain together, you and me.

I left my shovel at my feet and went away from the mountainside. I found another I could help on my way home that eventide. I saw them rested and refreshed and encouraged them to see the light at the end of the tunnel, for He said, “Come, follow me.”

As I turned to leave the simple words came ringing in my ears, “What can I do to help you, you’ve been so kind all of these years.” “I’m trying to move a mountain,” I said with faltering tone, “But it really is not important, I just can’t do it alone.”

“Let us go together,” he said, “I know there is still hope. I’ll bring a spade, a ladder, and plenty of braided rope.” Once again, the mountain we faced, but this time with the strength of ten. The Lord, me, and my brother, but now, for the salvation of men!

©2016 by Denise W. Anderson, all rights reserved. Subscribe today, for your emotional health!

Legacy

Legacy

I want to leave a legacy for those who will come after me, that when the bell tolls and I am gone, it will not have silenced my earthly song. They will have heard of the times that I wept and prayed that heaven’s assistance might not be stayed, the times that I overcame the night, and was able to make it ‘till morning’s light.

I want them to know that though life was hard, I kept on going, my senses marred by the winds and the waves that tossed me about, my heart within me trying to shout. When the skies were black and the storm clouds grim, threatening the loss of life and limb.

Yet the gales ceased and there was great calm, a generous dose of healing balm. A peace enveloped my mind and heart, giving me once again a new start. I basked in the warmth of the sun on my face, gaining strength yet for another race. I tethered my ship, and patched up the holes and even had the courage to set a few goals.

I want them to see the path ever clear and know that I am always near. That though they may stumble and though they may fall, there is one waiting there who has given his all that they may rise and conquer again because of the price that he paid back then.

I want them to hear the voice of gladness that speaks to the soul, amidst all the madness, that guides our path and shelters our way and helps us to sing at the end of the day. That our children may laugh, and dance and play, and be held in our arms, come what may.

I want them to feel passion for those in need whose souls are hungered, or bent, or do bleed, who look up to heaven and weep at the thought that they haven’t been able to get what they sought; forever empty, forever alone, forever in want of a hand in their own.

I want them to touch others with a love that is deep, and lose their lives, that perhaps they might keep the treasure of happiness living each day, keeping bitterness and hatred at bay. For life is short, our days long spent, achieving the purpose for which we were sent.

I want to leave this world a better place because of my sojourn in this rat-filled race. I want to be seen as one who cared, who took the time that a life would be spared. Whom others will see and simply say, “We knew heaven for a moment while she walked our way.”

©2015 by Denise W. Anderson, all rights reserved. Subscribe today, for your emotional health!

The Path to Happiness

Happiness

 

 

I am surrounded by sadness on every hand. Death and destruction sweep over the land. How can I smile and feel happy today? Things simply aren’t going very much my way.

Life is full of irony indeed. There is much of pain, of want, of need. There are many who have not a place to live and there are those who have not a morsel to give.

Is happiness having an absence of pain? Is it simply sunshine, or the lack of rain? If so, then happiness is empty indeed, for rain has its place once we have planted a seed.

If tears are a sin, then we have all fallen short, for each human being has hurt to report. Can happiness come even when there is pain? Is it possible to smile through the clouds and the rain?

Can I simply this day step outside of the zone, and allow myself a reprieve, a small moment alone to look for the good, to feel grateful, to love, all of the blessings that flow from above?

If I can, then happiness will surely come, for pure joy is a gift from The Sinless One. He said, “Come to me and I will take you in, in spite of your sorrow, in spite of your sin.”

Today, though the tears so easily fall, I will do as the One who gave his all. I will look for others in sadness and pain. I will hold an umbrella for those in the rain.

I will keep going forward with eyes now aware that there are others whose cupboards are bare. I will give what I have until there is no more. I will hold up my light on this rocky shore.

I will live my life full of purpose and love, and shed forth the peace that comes from above. I will serve until I hear the words that say, “Well done, my servant, you are here now to stay!”

©2015 by Denise W. Anderson, all rights reserved. Subscribe todayfor your emotional health!

Leave a comment – When do you feel most happy?

The Gift

Christmas is all about giving.

On a cold, dark winter night, I stopped at the grocery store for a few last minute items before fixing dinner for my family. There she was in the check-out lane, bent and frail, looking as if a stiff wind would blow her away. Knowing that she didn’t drive, I asked if I could give her a ride home.

She said that she would get a taxi, but I insisted, “I am going home in a few minutes, I can take you.” She conceded.  She lived just behind us across the back ally. I purchased what I needed while she waited on the bench beside the front entrance.

We walked together to my van and I opened the front door to help her inside, depositing the few things she had purchased at her feet. I helped fasten her seat belt and she quipped that it would have been easier to climb into a taxi. I just smiled and replied that I was glad to be there to help.

While we drove the few blocks to our homes, she searched in her coat pockets for her house key, but to no avail. It was nowhere to be found. She told me she had a spare outside the house she could use. I drove into her driveway and shone the van lights toward the house.

The thought occurred to me to invite her into my home for dinner, but I quickly dismissed it, not knowing the condition of things, having left my children alone while I went to the store. I helped her out, and stood holding her groceries while she searched for the key.

After several minutes, I offered to assist in the search. Again, the thought occurred to me that I should invite her to my home for dinner. I dismissed it once again, thinking that surely, she would be tired after her excursion to the store.

The key was not found. Both of us shivering, I invited her into my home to get warm and have a bite to eat. I helped her back into the van, and we crossed the ally to my home. I offered to take her coat, and fix her something warm to drink. She smiled and thanked me.

As I held her coat, I felt inspired to check for her key. There were some small pockets on the outside of the sleeves near the shoulder. There was the key! I held it up to her. She smiled and said, “How did you know?”

“God told me!” I grinned as I gave her a hug. With tears in both of our eyes, we thanked the Lord that the key had been found, and our friendship deepened. She was finally able to relax and enjoy dinner with our family. Afterward, I walked her home and helped get her purchases safely inside the house.

It was not long after that the dear woman passed away. I will never forget that night. The most important gift given was our time together with the Lord.

©2015 by Denise W. Anderson, all rights reserved. Subscribe todayfor your emotional health!

Leave a comment – What special gift do you remember?

Its Okay to Feel Good

Contentment

 

“I don’t feel good,” we often say when we are under the weather. We get a little bit of extra rest, eat right, and relax from the stress just long enough that we get back on our feet again. But do we really give ourselves permission to feel good?

As Christian men and women, we often get the mistaken notion that it is bad for us to feel good, that if we feel good, we must be doing something wrong. Perhaps we haven’t given enough of our time to help others, we haven’t sacrificed our own needs long enough for our families, or our suffering for the cause of Christ has not yet reached the level of purification that we think we need.

We examine ourselves and find that we come up short; therefore, we dive in once again, overworking ourselves, denying our own needs, and making sure that we give all that we have and then some. Unfortunately, the day comes again where we are physically exhausted. We say, “I don’t feel good” and we take some time off and do what it takes to get back on our feet again.

It is a never ending cycle, the notion that we have to give more and more until we are empty, unfulfilled, and in essence, burned out. Is that what God really meant when he said, as quoted in Mark 12:30, “And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength”?

Our motivation to love the Lord tends to slacken when we give so much that we have nothing left. We lose sight of the purpose in what we are doing, and may even turn against those we previously served willingly and ably. We realize that there is a limit to our physical strength, and that we cannot give love when we feel emptiness in our souls.

Christ paid the ultimate price so that we wouldn’t have to. How does this apply in our situations? Our love of the Savior comes as we recognize the personal nature of his atonement. We connect with him when we experience a small portion of the pain that he went through for us individually. Loving him in return motivates us to serve others.

It is not necessary, however, for us to repay the debt that we owe. We cannot be more than we already are. It is our responsibility to set boundaries in our lives to make sure that we do not overextend ourselves. Getting adequate  rest, nutrition, and nurturing allows us to not only feel Christ’s unconditional love, but to share it with others.

Feeling good is not an event; rather a choice that we make. We find contentment as we pause, feel our Savior’s love, and find peace in the process of becoming more like him.

©2015 by Denise W. Anderson, all rights reserved. Subscribe today,  for your emotional health!

Leave a comment – When was the last time you gave yourself permission to feel good?

Not Good Enough

Good Enough

Not good enough, I heard you say, how can you make that call? You’ve seen my weakness, heard my pain, and watched me slip and fall? You sensed my need for reassurance and have given none. Your only object is my fate; your sentence now is done?

 

You think that I will just back down, and leave it all alone? Then you don’t know me very well; that judgment I can’t condone. There stand outside those yet unheard in this courtroom here today. Open the doors and let them in. These people have something to say.

There is the woman that was in church sitting silent and afraid. Together we shared the words of light that a path through her darkness made. We took of the bread and water sublime, her hungry soul to feed. And when she left, she smiled and said, “Thanks for seeing my need.”

Next came the children, young and tender, smiling sheepishly. They sighed. “She is the one there in the front, the lady who gave willingly! She loved us and shared all that she had. We went to her home and prayed. When we were sick, she was there with us, though others had not stayed.”

Then there’s the friend from long ago that the Spirit said to me, “Go to her home, she needs you now. You have time to stop and see.”  She was on the floor, writhing in pain, her children crying about. All she needed was a helping hand, and the Lord had heard her, no doubt.

The words of others came pouring in, a murmur throughout the room: the smiles given, the hungry fed, the many lifted from gloom. The record books could not hold them all, the pages were joyfully filled. The hearts of many were lifted up, as compassion was there unveiled.

Then suddenly there came a crack as the wood of the gavel went down. The judgment time had come at last. No one dared to make a sound. My name was called and I walked to the bar with head and heart hung low. No witness or testimony sufficient, it seemed, how would I ever know?

“Not good enough,” was all I could hear, no matter how hard I tried. Then a hand came forward, “Enter in my rest,” “How can I?” I meekly cried. “I’m not good enough, and will never be, I cannot enter alone.” “You don’t have to be, I’ve paid the price. Come, I will take you home.”

“You are my child, and will always be, my love for you never ends. You have done all you could, you do not have to make amends. The time has come, enter into my rest, lean on my shoulder now. Feel my love, it is all you need, the rest will work out somehow.”

©2015 by Denise W. Anderson, all rights reserved. Subscribe todayfor your emotional health!

Leave a comment – Do you sometimes feel that you are not good enough?