Thursday, March 25, 2010

Tear Soup

Some cooking requires that you measure ingredients exactly (or so I am told) but making soup is different. Soup making is an art, and you are the artist. Improvising as you go, your only goal is that the blended creation will both satisfy your hunger and soothe what hurts you.

What's true about soup making is also true about grieving. And who of us hasn't experienced some loss in our lives that has confronted us with this unsettled and somewhat undefined process. Tear Soup is a richly illustrated book where Grandy, the main character has just suffered a big loss in her life, and so she is cooking up her own unique batch of "tear soup." Tear Soup gives you a glimpse into Grandy's life as she blends different ingredients into her own grief process. Her tear soup will help to fill the void in her life that was created by her loss.

Up North Wisdom recommends this book to you. Whether you are the "cook", a friend of the "cook", a child of the "cook", a male "cook", or if there are two of you "cooking", Tear Soup will affirm the bereaved, educate the unbereaved and will be a building block for children. You can get information about the book and how to order it by logging on to Let me know what you think.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Exhausted Resources

I love the story from Luke chapter 5 where Jesus is preaching and the crowds were so large that Jesus hops into Peter's boat and says, "push out from the land." He uses that boat as His pulpit and begins to preach the word. Then when He's finished, He surprises the men by saying, "Go fishing, Launch out into the deep and let down your nets." These disciples had toiled all night. These expert fishermen had done everything that they could but their training and their experience were not enough. They were trying to do what they had done so many times before but now it was only tired bodies and empty nets and discouraged spirits. They had exhausted their resources.

Jesus always used real life situations to make His points and the point was this -- if you try to live your life without Jesus Christ as the head of your life, you will always come up empty. How many times do we work and toil only to feel that all has been in vain? We try with all of our might to be good parents, good workers, good students, good husbands or wives, good Christians, -- only to end up with tired bodies and discouraged spirits. And that will always be the outcome when we operate without Jesus Christ as our source.

Peter, the disciples, and we are always having to learn that there is only one way to do the work of the Lord and that is HIS way. There is only one power that can enable us to live the life that He wants us to live and that is the power of the Holy Spirit. It look Peter a long time to learn that lesson but he did. In Acts 3 Peter tells the beggar that he didn't have any silver or gold to give him but he would give him the greatest discover of his life. In Jesus name, be made whole. Peter had made the discovery that life is more than physical strength, human wisdom and financial security. He discovered that life comes to those who believe in Jesus Christ, body, soul and spirit and give themselves unreservedly and completely to Him. God help us to make that discovery.

Christ calls you and I today to launch out into the deep of His grace, of His love and of His forgiveness and faith. You might respond like Peter, "But Lord, I've tried and I've tried and I really haven't gotten anywhere. Mostly Lord, I've make a mess of my life. I just seem to go a different direction but nothing seems to fall into place. I've worked so hard at it but It doesn't seem to happen. And I'm just afraid to try anymore."

Up North Wisdom says maybe you can say like Peter, "nevertheless Lord". Nevertheless because you call me to come to you with my burdens and my cares and my pain and my sin, because YOU ask me to do it. I will. I'll try again. And as God blesses you and strengthens you and touches your life, you can, like Peter, reach out and give people what they really need -- that same grace and love that has turned your life around and has given you meaning in life. THE BEST IS YET TO COME! Believe it.