Hold Me by Patti Corbello Archer

jesus hold

How many of you saw the movie, “The Help”? I think my 2 favorite parts of the movie were first of all when the nanny maid would pull the little girl with the long blond hair to her and say, “You are special, you are kind, you are smart…” and secondly of course, where the uppity prejudiced woman got her comeuppance. I know as Christians we are supposed to love our enemies, but I haven’t gotten a 100% on that yet lol. I think if you have ever been the underdog or victim you understand what I mean. But the part that has truly stayed in my heart is the part where someone cared enough to speak to the child’s character and spirit with gentleness and love – equipping her for a world that is kind, well, not near often enough.

I love laying my granddaughter across my lap. She looks into my face and I tell HER how wonderful, beautiful, smart, gentle, kind, precious, intelligent, creative, and on and on she is. As long as I speak she watches me, listens and absorbs every single word I use to describe her. She loves it. Then I tell her that I love every part of her from her hair to her toes, her hair, her eyes, her nose, etc. – that every part of her is worth loving – and that Jesus loves her too. And then we end it with a declaration that we love each other with our whole heart! This is a precious part of the valuable legacy that I will leave her.

I can’t help but think of that in this season of reflection. I don’t so much think of the New Year as resolutions but reflections. What worked, what didn’t, new things to accomplish, things to mark off my list, increasing my relationship with Jesus, being healthier, being more kind, smart, intelligent, gentle…etc.

That reminds me. Has anyone ever read Etiquette for Dummies? Oh my gosh, please do! I bought it years ago and pulled it out again. So many times we think getting snippy with someone, tuning someone out, road rage, or telling it like it is – is just part of being human. It is actually bad manners! Eek! I kid you not. It is amazing that we don’t think of ourselves as having bad manners. I am on Chapter 5 and ouch.

But back to the story, for my New Year thoughts I pulled out 5 books, my Bible, my Journal between me and God, a Rules of Engagement warrior prayer pamphlet, a cookbook What Would Jesus Eat, and the paperback Etiquette for Dummies.

All of these things seem to be about me, me, me but in actuality they make me better for you, you, you so that we can all see Him, Him, Him.

He continually reveals to me with every epiphany that it is always all about Him and I just get to be a part of it.

There is nothing like being held in His arms as He speaks to me, like the nanny maid did to that little girl, “You WILL have love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self control…”.

Patti Corbello Archer
1/4/14

Testimony….Dig Deep

 

I was at a funeral on April 18, 2012.  Mine.  I was outside kneeling under the live oak tree branches digging a hole into the ground because I had a plan to die.  Let me explain.  You see, several years ago my best friend went to Israel and all I asked her to bring me back from the Holy Land was a handful of the land.  Dirt.  Does that surprise you?  To ME that dirt was priceless. You recall the land that God gave the Israelites…that family that we are adopted into? You know the land where Jesus walked?  Or, the dusty land that was wiped from His feet when Mary cried over His feet?  Or maybe, you will think of His blood dripping on the land at the foot of the cross as He cried out to the Father.  Yes, that dirt, that land…and the reason for another funeral over 2,000 years ago.

Well, on April 18 that land from Israel sat in a small glass container on the side of my bible on the ground.  Through the years I had carried that container from one apartment to another, then to a home that I bought.  I then carried it from the sale of my home to another apartment so I would be closer to my son and his family.  And then I carried it from my apartment to here under the live oak tree branches where I live now.  My son would see my container of dirt every once in a while and say, “Mom, what in the world are you doing with that dirt? “ And we would laugh. 

You see, I didn’t know during all those years what I would do with it.  But I knew that one day I would know.  Like on April 18.  Then I knew.  It was time for a burial.  Just like Jesus, I had to die to what I knew and saw to become what was ahead of me.  There was a price for my future. Now, did it have to be a literal ceremony?  Maybe not, but to me it did.  To me I had to make my spiritual journey touch my flesh one in an unforgettable way.

I needed reminders because my life has had journeys where I not just laughed, cheered and grew – but also where I bled, cried and died deep inside – with scars that left limitations emotionally.  But one day at the foot of the cross I learned that He wanted to exchange all that for a new life.  I then literally watched myself bloom from a fleshly view of living this thing called life to be able to dance the spiritual dance with my Jesus…in my heart, as well as my body.  But even still life revealed new wounds that left scars, provision wars as well as health skirmishes and struggles to find the new definition of me.  You see, I never doubted who He was.  The doubt after the dust settled was who I saw in the mirror.

To that end, God drew me back to a place where one life ends and another begins…with Him anew.  So, I dug that hole and on my physical knees laid my wounded and scared spiritual heart and soul inside.  Then I poured that dirt that He bled on 2,000 years ago…and buried me, again.  Tears dropped onto the dirt but I remembered that His Word said He keeps all my tears anyway.  My funeral ended and I collected my shovel and brushed the dirt off my bible. 

From that moment on I began to look forward to His completed plan for me…not just the one that I had experienced so far.  I say all that to say this, “Have hope my brothers and sisters in Christ, because the new will come.”  Day by day, I have watched the new life and blooms arise from what I buried that day.  Who said that we have to have only one life on this earth.  God’s word says that with Him we can have as many as we are willing to die for.  Once we get to that point, He’s got us covered…literally.

That is called a creative miracle, and our destinies are a perfect place to reveal it.  Otherwise, how do we get there?

Blessings always,

Patti Corbello Archer

July 1, 2012