Creating from the fruit of our lips

Digital Camera

Speaking Psalms, Hymns and Songs… Post 2

As the winding road approached the train trestle at the village edge, the grey drear of the day had improved, casting bright bits of blue sunshine through gauzy white clouds.

I turned then into the small side street of the quaint town and stepped out into the lovely respite of hush that seems always to hover there.

Yet, that peace is made up of murmuring voices too.  The burbling of the river passing neath the disused wooden bridge, only steps beyond.  The chirp of birds flitting branch to branch overhead or running across lawns.  The gentle soughing of the breeze creaking through the rafters of the bridge and playing in treetops, lifting my hair from my shoulders.   And from a distance just round the corner, light laughter lilting over the rooftops from luncheoning cafe dwellers, settling over architecture of a century old here.  It is all blessedly unchanged, welcoming as a comforter.

As always, I’m enchanted by this diminutive white cottage beside the old stone church. Sized like a playhouse with a Victorian embellished portico, it makes me wonder – was this home long ago the vicarage to the church, just big enough for that minister?

It is not in the best repair.  The hedges are in sore need of trimming.  The yard is a mish- mosh and tangle of scraps.  Tiny fourth of July decorations, festive, if a bit out of place there in August; simple but attractive iron scrollwork chairs lining the walkway, hodgepodge.    Yet, there is a feeling of someone loving this little place…doing the best they can to pretty it up.

And standing there, camera in hand,  a story forms in me from these tiny puzzle pieces in the photo I snap.  I could envision a round cloth-covered table and chairs behind the hedge, instead of the chairs up front… set as though awaiting a guest for tea in the garden.  Cherry blossom trees framing the white of the home on either side.  I tinkered with changing the home color – maybe a pretty cottage butter-yellow.  Or perhaps just a brightly painted door instead.  But as I drew this one out, I couldn’t change the soft white color somehow.  It seemed…right.

Little White House in AdaInstead, I shaded beneath the roof line and around the portico with touches of heathery grey, as if the blossom trees cast their pink glow ever so soft upon the home, lit upon the round window in the door, danced on the path from the steps.   I added a hint of tumbled stone to that pathway, placed a few curtains in the windows, shored up the English country hedge, penned in a picket, set a couple of bluebirds winging about.  Bringing it into a fresh glory, the way a simple white flower stands out in a vase of pastel blooms.

I hope the owners are home when I stop by to gift them with a card sized print…and that it makes them smile.

Storybook cottage… like a Kincaid dream, a D.E. Stevenson home for her Miss Buncle…or a tiny cottage where Miss Beatrix Potter may have created her charming work. It reminds me of all these.  And…mm… maybe a bit of idyllic Disney too with singing bluebirds. 🙂

But more than that…today... a whispery thought comes.

“This is calling things that are not as though they were,” He seems to reveal.

The way He enjoins us in Deuteronomy 28 to choose and call forth blessing on all the work of our hands – before we see it.

To sow and reap harvest – because He set that law in motion.

To speak His Word so He can create fruit from the words in our mouths.  Bringing forth beauty out of ashes.

Because He is our Creative Father who speaks Life into being and has made us to do the same with His Spoken Word.

And then, I see it!

How in this entire scenario, the enjoying a walk along a quiet old street, the spying of a sweet English style cottage and imagining it’s story – it’s not unlike God creating fruit from our words of His Promises, especially as we declare with Him beauty and hope over something that seems drear and semi abandoned in other ways.  It’s not unlike His wanting to paint so much beauty and detail into our “stories,” lifting us out of the shabby and broken, and asking us to join Him in that by aligning our words with His…

Like Abraham calling himself “The Father of Nations” because God had promised him the fruit of that vision, when in all that looked to be “reality” it was purely impossible!

Like seeing yourself walking in God’s Word Promises when everything around you is screaming “no way that could happen!”

Like believing God could hold the heart of the King in His hands (when it seems they are far from following His Leading…  When you are considering giving up the vote) and move mountains at our say so…just because He said we could!  (And how He will move in our upcoming election in this way if we align with those standing for Truth closest to His Word, and believe for Him to…)

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And so… He dropped this week’s Word into my spirit.  A Word to speak out loud throughout our days, meditate upon, seek His Heart over for specifics in our own prayers…

 

Let’s share how His Words in our mouth changes our days!

Verse to Speak Aloud, Several Times a Day, Throughout This Week

As it is written: “I have made you a father of many nations.”  He is our father in the sight of God, in whom he believed—the God who gives life to the dead and calls into being things that were not.

~ Romans  4:17

  • In Your Name O Lord, I will call things as already done as God promises — speaking life to things that appear not yet to be,  like Abraham did.

 

To Ponder:

  • What does it mean to spiritually call things as already so, things that to our physical eyes are not?
  • What if today you call yourself and those you lift up, healed and whole in Jesus’ stripes!
  • What if you declare with God that His favor surrounds you, so that you take His Glory with you wherever you go?
  • In what ways do you see things changing to fruit in your prayers and life as you speak out His Word this week?

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©   Pam Depoyan

Photo, mine.

Little White House in AdaPen and Ink Drawing, “Tea in the Vicarage Garden” … Mine.

* See my Christmas snow drawing of this old stone church here: Churches

Ask about “Tea in the Vicarage Garden” for purchase – for the cottage lovers in us, or even for a storybook charm to a child’s room!   :)   See more in my new Heritage Home Portraits…An Ode to Currier & Ives collection at https://pamdepoyanblog.wordpress.com (Picture It in Pen and Ink!)  (Please do not copy without permission. See my copyright info button on the sidebar.  :)  )

Posted in Speaking Psalms Hymns and Songs | 6 Comments

When you are considering giving up the vote

A call to hope and not giving up!

If ever we needed to humble ourselves and pray for our land, stand up and be counted, it is now…

Thank you, Lord, for our home of many blessings…

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“I’ve been hearing it everywhere,” the Pastor began Sunday. “People proclaiming they don’t like either candidate, have good reasons to feel that way, just want to give up and not vote.  But God– what is HE saying?  Believe me – I do understand this sentiment, but now is NOT the time to give up! God is warning us, we are on a precipice in time…”

Inwardly, I nodded assent.  Sat forward a little to hear.

“What we don’t realize is that God is holding us responsible for the gifts He has given us – especially the gift of voting. And we will reap what we neglect or empower…

“‘But Pastor,’ you argue, ‘how can I choose between hateful over another?’  And I feel His compelling to warn you.  God is impressing me more and more as I’ve prayed about his leading on shepherding this church — good people are responsible in His eyes for doing nothing.  Just as they are responsible and will take on the judgement that is applied to any they align themselves with, knowing the evil stand that one represents and just sloughing it off.”     

That scary thought makes it all the more intimidating,” I thought.  “What if we align ourselves with the wrong one?” Images of Bible heroes flit through my thoughts.  Of King David, man after God’s own heart, yet a murderer and philanderer, too.  And of all of us, trying to decide between murderers and philanderers.

His next words broke through with deep resonance.  “In this election that is unlike any we have ever known, it is coming down to so much more than individual candidates who are not faultless.  We will never find people who are perfect – but the Holy Spirit is calling us to looking to Him as our leader.

“To seeking out information on what each platform stands for, and to seeking God on which one aligns with His Word. 

“This election goes far beyond who will be President, but will determine the way of our judges, the government of our children’s lives for decades to come… and that above individual candidates, is the true question — 

“Which platform’s thoughts will we allow to ultimately govern us?”

Listening, I felt as though he were shining a light on a dark corner in a deeper way.  Putting words to my wordlessness when I come up against those who are telling me they probably just won’t vote.

More than for a person, the pastor explained, we are actually voting their platform.  “Whether we believe it or not, each one has aligned themselves with a separate party platform,” he said.  “We may shrug that they don’t really follow it, but they MUST!  Whoever is elected, we as God’s people are responsible to hold them to it.

“But – how many of us are trying instead to choose as if in a popularity contest instead of really taking time to knowing those platforms?”

Suddenly, it made sense.  I thought of all the on the street interviews I’d watched this weekend, so many uninformed people just talking as inanely as I like her face, I hate his hair.

O God, I prayed… wake us up to how vital this is!

His next words compelled me to share them here with you today,

because it is like a shaft of light from out of the clouds…

“If it helps – do not think so much of choosing between two candidates, but between the platforms they stand on.  It is vital that you sit down and investigate the platforms as they are written out – contracts with the people – and compare them to what the bible says.  Becoming informed is the armor God gives us and He makes us responsible for doing so! 

“I am not telling you whom to vote for,” he continued, “but I am going to open up these platforms before you each week from now to election, then share the bible’s viewpoint and ask you to prayerfully compare…”

He chose abortion as his first key to explore, while I sat gobsmacked as he simply read the stance of Democratic Platform vs. the Republican.  I know the party I align myself with, but hearing it in such blatant black and white strikes the heart at the crucial and momentousness of this coming vote!

Tears choked him as he read these platform contract with the people statements… they blurred and starred my own eyes as I listened.  And though I don’t really talk politics on here  (or really anywhere) … I think I heard God’s whisper to my own heart.  Share this on the blog!

For this is NOT about politics.  Or about telling you whom to vote for.  It is understanding God’s leading on a gift He has given us… that He has put us in a nation, free under Him, and given us the gift of electing…  Do we want to throw that away?  And if we do, what does God say about it? 

The pastor began on page 25 of the Democratic platform.  You can read that here:    DOWNLOAD THE DEMOCRATIC PLATFORM

Then he read the Republican.  DOWNLOAD THE REPUBLICAN PLATFORM

Believe me… it is eye opening.

Then…  he compared to what God says in His Word, giving us several verses.  Reminding us to be careful before God on whom we align ourselves with – more than with a particular person  —  as far as their platform goes… 

Deuteronomy 30:19 (NIV) —  This day I call the heavens and the earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live

Psalm 139:13-16  (NIV)– For you created my inmost being;  you knit me together in my mother’s womb.  I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.  My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.  Your eyes saw my unformed body;  all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.

Isaiah 44:2 (NIV) —  This is what the Lord says—  he who made you, who formed you in the womb,  and who will help you: Do not be afraid, Jacob, my servant, Jeshurun, whom I have chosen.

Jeremiah 1:5 (NIV)  — “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.”

Psalm 22:31 (NIV)  – They will proclaim his righteousness,  declaring to a people yet unborn:  He has done it!

Psalm 75:5-6 (NIV) — Do not lift your horns against heaven;  do not speak so defiantly.’” No one from the east or the west or from the desert can exalt themselves.

Ecclesiastes 11:5 (Amplified) — Just as you do not know the way and path of the wind or how the bones are formed in the womb of a pregnant woman, even so you do not know the activity of God who makes all things.

1 Corinthians 3:17 (Amplified) –  If anyone destroys the temple of God [corrupting it with false doctrine], God will destroy the destroyer; for the temple of God is holy (sacred), and that is what you are.

Image result for image of clouds opening from heaven and american flag

If you feel the impossibility between choosing candidates… Stop considering it a matter of personality and think of this first and foremost as an election of PLATFORM…

Do we have the right to give up the vote?  When I read these I know Heaven’s answer is a thunder-clapping, resounding, NEVER!

That’s why, I encourage us all to know the platform for which we vote!

And I would entreat those who are not in this nation – please keep us close in heart prayer as we go to this election, feel free to share this on Facebook…  for certainly, our vote has world effect.

Holy Spirit, give us Your Wisdom!  Help us not to give up…but to know and follow Your leading in all our ways!  To really understand the responsibility You gift us with… especially in bringing Your Light forward when confronted with what looks only darkness…

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©   Pam Depoyan

Posted in Prayer Corner | 19 Comments

In the Rain-Scrubbed Light of Day

French Country WindowPadding in to the living room, I pushed toile curtains aside on their rings, making my way window to window, throwing up cotton blinds to the morn.

Outside, the breath of a breeze, child of the gale that stormed all night, lightly whisked treetops about the circle gazebo.  But already the air held a heavy, breathless warmth, mixed with  thin sunshine and a white smudge of cloud overhead.

Robin’s egg sky peeking here, there, offered untrustworthy hope of full sun and less humidity, though casting a lozenge of warm light on the carpet at my feet…(reminding me out of the blue, of my old sheltie, and how she loved to find such a spot of a morn, circle round and round to lay down and bask in it)… and to my astonishment, the longtime-in-coming fresh flowering geraniums were kicking up red and white striped pantalets,  as if dancing in their pot on my porch, refreshed and spurred on by the night’s rain…

O Lord, you beautify, dignify and crown my life with loving-kindness and tender mercy…You redeem my life from the pit and corruption,” I murmured, letting those words escape aloud on the air afresh.   It was the Psalm 103 verse I’d been meditating now for the last week…in answer to the Holy Spirit’s nudge… whispering like a breeze through my open window, stirring the gauzy curtains round my heart, calling me to turn my mouth to words of light.  Calling things as He has promised they are, in place of speaking out only what I see.

Mm… beautifies.   He not only makes me more and more aware of beauty round me moment to moment, somehow… (Lord, show me how)… He longs to make beauty of my life…

Dignifies.  When I feel less than, don’t think I’m making any difference in my one life, am put down or rejected… He dignifies me.  Sets me on high.  Calls me His Royal daughter and heir.

Redeems my life from the pit and corruption…   such as sickness, hopelessness, negativity, loss, lies of the enemy…

It is funny how even when we are alone, we can tend to declare useless words to a still room.  Just giving voice to thoughts that are going nowhere.  Like saying to no one there, “I wonder what so and so meant when they said– ”

But gently, He reminded me…”I’ve made you speaking beings.  To bring life with your very words…” 

How  much life was I really bringing with my words? I began wondering.  While a thought edged round the corners, imploring me to begin being more purposeful in putting His words…aloud…in my mouth.  Words that come against otherwise negatives that could easily come forward, watering mind and spirit with joyful promise. Several times a day.  Round the house.  In the car.  Out walking the neighborhood.   (I’m a bit more self conscious about doing that last one, though others often stroll by talking openly to their phones!)

And here... on this blog!

I was thinking how many of us like to choose a “word” for our year as January rolls in.  And that the EVER-SPEAKING God who creates from words and endows us to do the same does not want us limited to that ONE WORD.

So…What if we were to choose a different few words of His word each week to meditate, murmur aloud, seek His voice in, and roll around as honey on our tongues throughout those seven days?  For those who journal, to maybe even write down some insights He brings to mind and heart and spirit… and share what we “hear?”

To actively do as Ephesians 5:19 enjoins us…    Speaking to one another with psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit. Sing and make music from your heart to the Lord…”

And so I’m initiating Speaking Psalms, Hymns and Song of the Spirit here.  (Though it will open at the beginning of each week, I will link up on other days as well so you can join in any time…)  I’ll offer a verse at the end of each post for us to ruminate and chew on…aloud… each day of that week.  Then return here the following Sunday for the next week’s word.  They will only be a starting point… feel free to choose your own meditation verse as He leads!  I look forward to hearing what He’s moving in you through this each week too!

Just as I completed these words here, my phone jangled.  A woman from a ministry I give to, asked if she could pray with me.  As she did, her words became as living water showering me…crowning me with His loving-kindness and tender mercies. “See that image of His Blood redeeming and cleansing and pouring over you, head to toe,” she encouraged…

Digital CameraStepping outside to capture a closing photo for this post, I leaned over my newly transplanted hydrangea plant.  It’s been a few weeks now and I’ve been uncertain as to it’s “taking” to the rocky new ground.  Brown crinkles leafy greens.  But this morn… I pushed aside the leaves in the same way I opened my curtains earlier.  In the rain-scrubbed light of day, almost hidden, jewels are beginning.

Jewels in a crown.

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Let’s share how His Words in our mouth changes our days!

Verse to Speak Aloud, Several Times a Day, Throughout This Week

(especially in those moments when circumstances are screaming the opposite!)

  • You satisfy my mouth with good so my youth is renewed. 
  • You make me like the eagle – strong, overcoming, soaring!

~ from Psalm 103: 5 (amplified)

To Ponder:

(No matter your age…) How do I see Him renewing my youth today?

In what ways is he making me strong, overcoming, soaring?

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©   Pam Depoyan

Hydrangea photo, mine.

Pen and Ink Drawing, “Morning Glory” … Mine.

Ask about prints of this piece!  :)  See more in my new French Country collection at https://pamdepoyanblog.wordpress.com (Picture It in Pen and Ink!)  (Please do not copy without permission. See my copyright info button on the sidebar.  :)  )

Posted in Speaking Psalms Hymns and Songs | 20 Comments

One Bestselling Author Who is Making a Difference

“Lucy, Lucy, eats stinky food that puts us all in a big, bad mood!”  How can Ralph be so mean, Lucy wonders?  Lucy is one of a kind, and Ralph loves to point that out. Lucy’s defining moment comes when Ralph truly needs her help. Because she knows what she stands for, Lucy has the courage to make the right choice. This charming story empowers children to always do the right thing and to be proud of themselves even when they are faced with someone as challenging as Ralph.

 

Something fun landed in my email a month or so ago… a Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators callout for a volunteer writer to interview bestselling picture book author Maria Dismondy.  Followed by – “Hi Pam, you were the first to respond, so the assignment is yours!”

I hadn’t heard of Ms. Dismondy at that point, but as someone who enjoys writing for children and has a few picture book story and art ideas stringing through her mind even this moment, I knew I’d love to talk stories and publication with another writer who is reaching hundreds of thousands with her witty and poignant books.

Then, wanting to get to know a bit about her before reaching out for the interview… I clicked on over to her website — and fell in love with her story!   A dynamic, young and former teacher/now writer who longs to instill compassion and empathy in her small students…creating books out of her own childhood days of being bullied.  Mm… How much she resonates with my own heart on this topic!

Says Dismondy, “In today’s society, it’s important to remind children that, although we are different on the outside, we are very much alike on the inside.”

Captivated by her bubbly, enthusiastic and engaging teaching style, I viewed many of the video links there — watched her in action as she in turn captivated young kids — and grew even more excited to write this piece of her story for the SCBWI.   Then, searching out at a local bookstore and reading this her first book (the charming Spaghetti) cinched it.

I’m happy to say she’s agreed to join me here soon for a bit more of her story and the message of her heart and books… and I can’t wait for us all to get to know her better when I post that continuing interview here!

In the meantime, I thought you’d all like to meet her today in the brief interview I wrote over at the SCBWI…  Won’t you join us there?  :)   Then do watch for more with Maria here soon!

http://scbwimithemitten.blogspot.com/2016/08/to-self-or-not-to-self-by-pam-depoyan.html

Maria Dismondy

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©   Pam Depoyan

Posted in Interviews | 10 Comments

Invitation

Digital Camera

Recently, I was invited to participate as a writer in a lovely new online magazine…

Just wanted to point out the pink “contributor” button over to the right — in case you’d like to hop over for a bit of sunshine and inspiration for your day!  Simply click on that button to explore the several uplifting stories there – beautifully written by some other bloggers whose names you may recognize from linkups, as I do…

And while you are there, maybe check out the elegant presentation given to    http://blessedtransgressions.org/the-one-note-flute/ — one of my devotions you may recall here…

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©   Pam Depoyan

photo of flowers and plate, mine

Posted in Uncategorized | 7 Comments

One of my favorite Christmas cozies coming to Hallmark!

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A merry e-letter pinged into my email today from author Robin Jones Gunn, enticing as the jingle jangle of bells on an opening tearoom door…

Announcing the fun news that Hallmark is making one of my favorite Christmas novellas –  her ‘Finding Father Christmas’ – into one of this upcoming season’s new movies!

Yay!

And …(Double grin)… with one of their best-loved movie leads!

“The delightful Erin Krakow from Hallmark’s When Calls the Heart TV series stars as a perfect Miranda,” enthuses Gunn. “Niall Matter made the character of Ian come alive and Wendie Malick plays a wonderfully convincing Margaret.”

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The whole journey took almost five years, the author continues, revealing. “There were so many times I wanted to share the many ups and downs of the whole process with you but I needed to wait,” she reveals now.

“You can imagine how it felt like a dream come true when my agent and I were invited to go on set for part of the filming. We loved getting to know the actors and spending time with the director and the producers, whom we adore.  I took a lot of photos and will be posting them on social media and on my blog between now and when Finding Father Christmas airs in December on the Hallmark Movies and Mysteries Channel so check in at www.robingunn.com often for behind the scene photos and stories.”

The script for the movie was created by combining Gunn’s first two Christmas novellas, Finding Father Christmas and Engaging Father Christmas

And to add to the bell-ringing news,  Gunn also announced her brand new third novella in the Father Christmas Collection, Kissing Father Christmas, releases in October.

The series is now available for pre-sale in the Robin’s Nest BookShop.  Says Gunn, “The first 200 Beautiful Readers who purchase both books (one volume that combines the first two, along with the separate new novella)  will receive a special, autographed Father Christmas ornament.”

🙂

Unfamiliar with this savory little book?

Read my BOOK REVIEW: Finding Father Christmas.    Mm.  As I describe the feel of this seasonal cozy there…  “Satisfying as a cup of hot cocoa.  Delicious as a fresh baked fairy cake.”

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©   Pam Depoyan

sharing with:

sneak%2Bpeak%2B1  cozy book  hop   http://forfunreadinglist.blogspot.com/2016/03/simply-tuesday-sneak-peek.html

 

Posted in Book Reviews | 16 Comments

Take a walk with me?

The other day, a friend and I spent a rarely stolen, leisurely summer afternoon browsing one of our most charming lakeside towns…

 

I’m sharing a bit of this summer breeze day and promenade over at my other blog today…

Would love for you to join me there for a bit of cup and saucer story… 🙂

Just a simple click on over to https://pamdepoyanblog.wordpress.com/2016/01/11/a-little-communique-spot-2/

🙂

Photo:  Vintage teacup courtesy of

www.spiritedprophire.co.uk

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