Awakening a Keen Observer

Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Whose Choice

As we grow people give us more and more chances to make choices. It is part of a parent's work to help children make good choices. So you just put before a child two good choices all the time. Then they can't go wrong.
The other day I heard a mother put before a small child a choice. She said you have three books you can only get two which two will you take. The child stood still, not moving, just holding the three books that somehow she had brought from the children's dept to the register. She must have been 3 or 4, no older. I was amazed and didn't think that the little one really had the capacity to make such a decision. But she did. I thouth there may have been easier ways for that to have happened. I thik that the little one should have been given that directive before she got to the register.

What choices does God put before us. Well the world puts amazing choices all the time. The world says spend money on extras, and God says, give it to the poor. The world says there is never enough, God says there is plenty for all and some left over. The world says play hard doing whatever is necessary to be first, God says, love one another...
There are others..
What choices come to your life? What choice will you make... this way or that way..

figure it out with God's help

God abide
Bobbie Giltz McGarey

Tuesday, March 29, 2005


Although Easter was at a different time of year, this first week after Easter always reminds me of my father. It was at the end of this week that he died. He was young, 73 and I really thought I was going to have him be with my children far longer than he was. He did leave a lasting impression.
And you wonder sometimes if what you do makes any difference in the world. As I've been told, ministry, teaching, medicine, many of these kinds of jobs are those that have been described, 'they are like a tree which has been planted the shade of which you'll never get to enjoy. And that is true. We don't always or often do something that has an immediate result. Being with people makes you know that there are things you can do that make a difference. But most of the time we are not aware of those things. And that is ok.
Becauee all we do we do because we are doing this gift for God/Jesus so that God willknow our love for friends and famileis all across the area. It gives us an opportunity to say...just pass it on. that love from god.
Deep sigh.
Between this place in the next is like an uncertain imbetween. Only uncertain because we are limited by the love we put into everything we do.
Friend, enjoy God's love and pass it on.
Glory be toGod, alleluia! amen

Sunday, March 27, 2005


Years ago a friend returned from a trip to Turkey. She was a professor and had traveled with the University Women and visited the women who were in textiles. They had a remarkably wonderful time. She came back with one story that has always stayed with me.
They took them on a tour of one area where people, families lived in large carved out areas in rock, caves. And they visited a woman who was quite a textile artist. She was most hospitable and as in so many countries, they were invited in to have tea and cookies. It seemed to be a stretch but she was so proud that she had been chosen to recieve some of these honored guests. They really wanted to leave her a gift but realized that it would not be possible and to support her dignity.
My friend had noted with great interest the large circular stone that was to the side of the door. It was like a big concrete wheel in size she described. And then she noted a ridge they steped over to get into the house. She surmised that the stone and that groove were the same size. She asked about it.
They said that it was an ancent way of making a door. Apparently it was amazingly easy to move from the inside but from the outside it was impossible to move it, to budge it.
My friend said there was something about what they had just said that seemed familiar to her but she couldn't figure it out in the midst of the visit. But on the way back it came to her. These caves they told her were of many sizes. Some people even used them for tombs because when the stone is rolled in front it cannot be opened, from the outside. The woman told everyone that these kind of caves had been lived in for several centuries all across the Middle East.

But it could from the inside be easily opened.

And all she could think of was the Resurrection morning story of the women....and how will we roll away the stone...and.... it had been done, and all that was left inside were bands of cloth, like the bands of cloth Jesus was wrapped in at his birth, so at his death, and the stone was rolled away.
repeat that to yourself...
once more...

from the inside.... from the inside...

Thanks Be to God

God abides
Bobbie Giltz McGarey

Friday, March 25, 2005

Full Moon

Did you see the Moon last night. Full, aglow? Almost too bright to look at it. But it shined its way across the sky and even the clouds couldn't diminish it's brightness.
This is the same moon that shines on my family in india and afgnahistan. It is the same moon that will bring the tides higher and the planting right.
This is the same moon that has shined on our ancestors, forever, and we know that this is going to be the moon that will shine on this earth forever.
Jesus saw the moon, so did millions of others befoe and after him.

What will you reflect to the earth?

Good friday

God abides
Bobbie Giltz McGarey

Fullest moon
high and bright
shines on me and all I love tonight
be with all who see the light
fullest moon
this night

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Testing the water

A friend sent me some pictures of her little daughters walking by the beach. They are 5 and 3 and they are so beautiful. They pick up shells they play in the sand and then they test the water. She got some great pictures of them walking gently into the water and then jumping back and then on successive times getting wetter and wetter. Suddenly they got their hair wet, they sat in the tiny waves, they ran and jumped the water as it approached. It is wonderful to see the progress.

I am sure we all approach things with the same kind of gentleness. But do we persist? They did, each of them did, they kept trying and it got good. it was good it was wonderful it was so much fun.
She sent one picture that had them seated side by side in the water to their waists ...just looking out into the world. Looking out into the world. Looking out ahead. But more importantly side by side--together.

Life is better when shared with another.

God abide
There's work to be done!

Bobbie Giltz McGarey

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

Come Back Spring

I am surprised today that it feels really cold outside. It is amazing. I mean wasn't it in the80's not long ago? Well it feels cool. Apparently this is almost as early as Spring can officially come. I think someone forgot to tell the weather provider. It is cold and really windy.
But the difference is the way the air smells. It has in it a hint of spring no matter where you are. The blooming things send out their scents. Even the leaves are peaking out, the green I see in that old tree in my yeard is coming out! There's no stopping it.
When we lived in Utah we always had tulips in the snow. A friend in Salt Lake sent me a picture of some beautiful flowers in her yard. The next day she sent me another picture of the tips of the flowers otherwise covered with snow. It's amazing. It's Spring.
So how do we become like the flowers and bloom when its time. It is as has been said, our job to bloom where we are planted. Apparently for now this is where we are all to be.
Do we not trust that if Spring can come, that surely there is good for all of us? It is a promise. Now live into that promise.
Surprise! You are going to be in the world as you are and that is just what you are supposed to do. Dear Mr. Rogers always taught us, "I love you just the way you are." That's the Good News we should never miss.
Be spring! Spring! Be joyful! Even in this Holy Week .
Be well
God abide
There's work to do.
Bobbie Giltz McGarey

Monday, March 21, 2005

mighty mountains

Oh Really

Psalm 121:1-8

1I lift up my eyes to the hills—from where will my help come?
2My help comes from the LORD,who made heaven and earth.

How many times have I read this psalm and thought... My help comes from the hills? Is it just me that thinks that? I don't know.
I am always amazed by perspectives. When I grew up in Ohio and traveled a couple of times a year we would drive across the Appalachian mountains to Virginia, I thought, no mountains could be higher. I loved the rolling hills in SE Ohio and the height you could see and then from the top of it the hills how far you could see. Then I moved to AZ. The mountains there were altogether different Camelback Mountain was at the end of our street.. I remember asking how the people got up the mountains when it snowed? Ok my friends paused and I realized there was no snow in Arizona. Then we would travel and camp up in the mountains they were beautiful.
Then I went to India and went to a Hill Station town Mussori and we could see the high Himalayas. Those majestic mountans were totally awesome.
The mountains in Oklahoma, though not so high, are so beautiful and so very old. They are so old that they are rounded and small. You should see them...
My help doesn't come from the hills... My help comes from God.
The mountains just remind me of the majesty... Don't move them.... even if you believe enough to do so! I like them all just where they rae.

Thanks Be to God.

Bobbie Giltz mcGarey

posted by Bobbie | 10:54 PM | 0 comments   

Sunday, March 20, 2005

driving into the rain

There are times in our life journey when it is like we are driving into the rain--and there is nothing we can do about it. We can't change it because the rain is right there inbetween us and where we need to be. We have to make it through some how. And we are lucky because we are protected in a car, we have lights and windshield wipers and we have a way to make it through the storms that come at us and so we do.
And we don't go through these storms to prove anything, they are just part of life. They come and they pass over and we go on. And if we are really lucky or really alert we learn something in the passing. We are ready in fact to take on another storm if it comes.
Once some years ago in another place a woman in her 40's said she had never been to a funeral. No one she knew intimately had ever died. I was surprised. What an amazing thing she claimed. Claimed it because it was just the way her life had gone. Yet, it was clear this was about to change. Her parents were not well and aging, her cousin had a serious illness. I don't know how she faced it. But she did. And she will face this kind of storm again. As will all of us.
The movie Carosel had the wonderful song. When you walk through a storm hold your head up high and don't be afraid of the dark...
We all know that one way or another some time we will encounter a storm.
When your's comes may it be cleansing to your soul and enlivening to your heart and may you not fear but face it with courage.

God abide
Thanks for stopping by
Bobbie Giltz McGarey

Holy Week

Sunday, March 20, 2005

Holy Holy Week

Holy Week

we are wholly - weak
Filled so full with grace -
hearts and lives filled with busy
a four letter life-word of many
and contrasted
to the empty-ness
of the tomb
which itself was so full
of the love of God
it could do nothing less
than break open.
give us heart-room to be so filled
with the love of God
that it will spill over
and our lives burst with joy
Easter morning comes
again again again
again again
joy to the world....
Jesus lives.

bobbie mcgarey

Saturday, March 19, 2005

Life Caption

One of our older tv's coraked over christmas and they told us it wasn't reasonable to repair it. So we bought a new one. Now I won't go through ALL the details but somehow the controller ended up with Betsy in tulsa because we had one that worked with this tv here. But lo and even behold, when regular tv is on there are the captionings at the bottom. Allll the time. Part of that is interesting because what they say and what they put up for captions are not always the same...And sometimes they are behind it.
It is interesting to me that we have in part begun to read TV. But it is always interesting to muse about what our life snapshots would be like if someone else were writing them. she is when she was 12 months old walking on her first birthday.
Snap she is a kid and camper at church camp scared by stories of the 'one armed brakeman' she is in school... in school...still in school... and still still in school....
Snap... here she is meeting John ...and life changing...

Ok ok I hear you say you're 57 I haven't got time for the next 30 years even if they do include Johnny, Betsy, Molly, Ordination, (more school) and then ...snap

What pictures of our lives does God have in God's heart... of your life? of all our lives? shared... shared... shared...
Because that is what Jesus' snaps would look like..

God bless you as we enter Holy week.

God abide...there's work to be done.
Bobbie Giltz McGarey

Friday, March 18, 2005

Well, I knew that!

I Knew That
11For surely I know the plans I have for you, says the LORD, plans for your welfare and not for harm, to give you a future with hope. 12Then when you call upon me and come and pray to me, I will hear you. 13When you search for me, you will find me; if you seek me with all your heart, 14 I will let you find me, says the Lord.

Today was the Oral defense of the thesis...All my classmates and I did well. I am both relieved and ...oh relieved.

So I came to the lectionary reading ...and here it is. The one I copy for others, the prescription I give others... and here today this is what I was to read.
This day as well I got more pictures of Gladys on her trip to India/now heading to Afghanistan. Praise Be to God.

So, brief though this is it will be my mantra as I fly home...
For surely I know the plans I have for you... plans for your welfar and not for harm... Remember Friend...this scripture applys to you as well!

God abides
There's work to be done
Bobbie Giltz McGarey

Saturday, March 12, 2005



Tomorrow is the scripture about Lazarus in the tomb....Jesus waited ...wept. ...out of the tomb..I have been praying about it and how to read it new.
Do we as individuals hide away... and die to those things that God calls us to do... and if we were Lazarus and Jesus called our name... would we come out... or stay hidden away... safer...dead yes...but perhas safer than confronting the world that is all around us... all around us... all around us...
Jesus knew he was walking into a threatening place to him...he was willing to take the risk ...Jesus take the risk and go back to the place where he was going to be put to death...he goes back the disciplles go back with him...
Martha makes the statement of faith... the one always accused of being too busy about the work in the kitchen...Mary..the faithful at his feet...cannot control her love for Lazarus and her love for Jesus ....whose feet she washes with her feet...

Fill in your name.... and listen... Jesus is calling you....You.... by name...

come on come on! the journey continues

God abide There's work to be done.
Bobbie Giltz McGarey

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

Time again flies


We've chatted before about how time flies. In a state like Oklahoma with the Seasons mixed up, warm today cold tomorrow and warm again, sometimes we can even loose track of what time of year it is. We know Spring is coming because the days are getting longer, and even with the wind it is warm in the afternoon, and it just has that 'feel' about it.
We will learn to enjoy the time when we are willing to be present to the present. When we are willing to put aside the next few hours and concentrate on the minute we have just now...that breath...that thought..that time to be doing or not doing...just now.

Many of us know all to well how those moments can seem like everything when they are filled with a loved one. How those moments matter in our memory because we have them etched on our hearts. Those moments when parents were young and we were little. When our children were young and so were we. When our Grandparents taught us something wonderful and we knew they were the smartest people we would ever meet.

Etched on our hearts are painful times too. Goodbye's that were longer than we ever expected. Children being hurt and not being able to help. Parents changing and growing older. A relationship gone with siblings or friends. These too are part of who we are.

Time flies and we remember some of the good things, and some of the others. We remember most of all that we have an opportunity to make something good today. To etch on the heart of someone we meet the knowledge that they are valued children of God. Each of us doing this in our own way could change the very world we live in. It could remove power from those who hold it over others because true personal freedom comes from within. Whatever we do let it be for the Good.
May you be blessed, and may you be a blessing.

God abide
There's work to be done!

Bobbie Giltz McGarey

Monday, March 07, 2005

Perpetua and Felicity

Perpetua and Felicity

"and be not offended because of our passion"
Two very faithful Christian women whose passion for God was complete. They were willing to do whatever it took to remain committed to their faith.

deep breath

Would anyone ever been offended because of my passion for the Gospel? Have I ever been so bold that I could offend someone with how much Jesus means in my life, and how that changes all I see?

I pass the gambling casinos everyday filled with people losing money, and I am offended. Do i say anything? Do I speak about in where others will hear? Am I willing to offend others calling them to the lives they turn around and claim to live and to give and yet throw away a month's worth of food for children. There are other ways we spend discretionary money. makeup, coffee, sodapop, ....fill in your own.....

What do I say and when? How do I find the forum? Many questions. answeres unknown. but I do know that God has planted this in my heart and perhaps gives us all the opportunity to be passionate. Will I do that when I am interviewed on Wednesday for a newspaper article? I don't know. I pray so.

let somehow the passion I have for God spill out with all I do. This lenten journey and reflection is wonderfully troubling. It has made me consider who I am now. Who I want to be. AND even more importantly who God plans for me to be now.
Unafraid I move ahead. step by step...

God abides
There's work to be done!
Bobbie Giltz McGarey

I'm going to see if i can find the text that perpetua and felicity wrote that frightened Augustine...

Thursday, March 03, 2005

My hands... your hands...God's...

My hands

Christ has no body now on earth but yours,
no hands but yours, no feet but yours;
yours are the eyes through which Christ's compassion looks out on the world,
yours are the feet with which He is to go about doing good
and yours are the hands with which He is to bless us now.
-Teresa of Avila

I ran across this quote again today. It is etched in my heart. And I think of Gladys being in Afghanistan now and am praying for her health and her stability and her taking good care of herself.
But it is for this reason that she is there.
Christ has no body on earth but yours... there is no one else who could have been there. I believe this about her time at the children's home and also now in afghanistan. God has always had a plan for her life, and this is part of that plan. We pray for it to be all for the good.
And she sees with eyes of compassion. And she has passed that 'seeing' on to her family and to her grandchildren. We have to learn to use those eyes...but we have them.
Compassion is that which moves us deeply, in the gut, that makes all things new always.
Compassion is what gives us hpe and joy when we share it, bottled up it cripples us because we are overwhelmed by the need for compassion in the world today.
God be with us and use us, each of us, empower us and enlighten us and give us strength for the journey to easter and beyond...
Where is God planning to use your hands... be ready..the time is now
Thanks Be to God
Bobbie Giltz McGarey
Chattanooga, OK's boys basketball team made it though the first of three games to the state championship. It warms my heart as my dad in the 40's took his high school team, of a town about that size to the state championship. It makes me smile.
God abides and for this I give thanks with my every breath.