Author: barleyharvest

Cease Striving

I’m alive. Apparently not very good at keeping up a blog, but I’m alive. Can’t even muster up a  picture at the top of this post with a coordinating quote, because if that picture indicated my life right now it would be a stack of books I’m confused about, a schedule for a job I never thought I would be doing, and a “To Do” list I might as well throw away at this point. My intention was (more…)

Actually, It Is Very Near To You


“The secret things belong to the Lord our God, but the things that are revealed belong to us…” -Deuteronomy 29:29

No other time in my life have I been more convinced of that verse. I am taking baby steps and giant leaps both at once into a direction that seems to be off my radar most days. I am not completely confident of this direction. Some things I know, other things I (more…)

He Is Mighty In Strength


I believe people are creatures of habit. Some more than others and myself more than most. This phrase is repeated several times in Exodus 13: “for by a strong hand the Lord brought you out from this place.” This had to be repeated over and over again to remind and encourage Israel to fear the Lord and not their adversaries.

It is a beautiful statement that also reminded them of His power. It was only by His strong hand that the people were brought out of Egypt. By the same strong hand, God made a way for me by sending Christ, so how much more should I be encouraged by His power and love? (more…)

Sorrowful, Yet Always Rejoicing


An inscription found on a wall of a cellar in Cologne, Germany in WWII, where Jews were hiding read:

I believe in the sun even when it is not shining
I believe in love even when feeling it not
I believe in God even when He is silent

Part of me always feels guilty to admit I feel God is being silent. It feels disrespectful to God, who I know loves me so much and desires to communicate with me. Yet, there are times He is silent. And it is a piercing silence.  (more…)

Grace Upon Grace


The Old Testament is so beautiful. Completely a mess, but a beautiful mess. I do see why the New Testament is where a lot of people prefer to camp out and I see the questions nonbelievers (and believers) have about God’s favor on certain people who seem to commit terrible sin after sin after sin. Yes, there is a theological discussion to be had, but there is so much beauty in the stories.

I have been reading through Genesis and (more…)

Born to Set Thy People Free


As we prepare our hearts for Christmas, for the promise of a Savior, I can think of no better hymn:

Come Thou long expected Jesus

Born to set Thy people free

From our fears and sins release us

Let us find our rest in Thee

Israel’s strength and consolation

Hope of all the earth Thou art

Dear desire of every nation

Joy of every longing heart

Joy to those who long to see Thee

Day-spring from on high appear

Come thou promised Rod of Jesse

Of Thy birth we long to hear

O’er the hills the angels singing

News glad tidings of a birth

Go to him your praises bringing

Christ the Lord has come to earth

Come to earth to taste our sadness

He whose glories knew no end

By his life he brings us gladness

Our Redeemer Shepherd Friend

Leaving riches without number

Born within a cattle stall

This the everlasting wonder

Christ was born Lord of all

Born Thy people to deliver

Born a child and yet a King

Born to reign in us forever

Now Thy gracious kingdom bring

By Thine own eternal spirit

Rule in all our hearts alone

By Thine all sufficient merit

Raise us to Thy glorious throne

-Charles Wesley

I love this video done by the Skit Guys (song by Marcy Priest):

Though you have not seen him, you love him. Though you do not now see him, you believe in him and rejoice with joy that is inexpressible and filled with glory, obtaining the outcome of your faith, the salvation of your souls. Concerning this salvation, the prophets who prophesied about the grace that was to be yours searched and inquired carefully, inquiring what person or time the Spirit of Christ in them was indicating when he predicted the sufferings of Christ and the subsequent glories. It was revealed to them that they were serving not themselves but you, in the things that have now been announced to you through those who preached the good news to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven, things into which angels long to look. Therefore, preparing your minds for action, and being sober-minded, set your hope fully on the grace that will be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ.

-1 Peter 1:8-13 (emphasis mine)

Jesus our King came. We wait eagerly for His return. Come Thou long expected Jesus.

Goodness and Light

We long for peace. This time of year more than ever, we want peace. I came across a book recently with a chapter about the song “Do You Hear What I Hear?” The song is a plea for peace.

Noel Regney is the artist who wrote it during the Cuban missile crisis in 1962. Noel had lived in France and served in WWII. He hated war and wanted to see peace. His wife, who wrote the music, said they feared a nuclear war at that time and everyone was screaming for peace.

One night when Noel was coming home (more…)

Merry Thanksgiving


Thanksgiving is the forgotten holiday and I am okay with that. I started listening to Christmas music at the beginning of November and could have easily skipped right over it. I don’t like cranberry sauce or football. That pretty much just leaves turkey and I probably wouldn’t miss that either. So maybe you can see why it never occurred to me to do a blog post about Thanksgiving.

I think all the other bloggers in all the land (or at least this land) covered the topic of thankfulness for us during the month of November, so I don’t have anything profound to add, but (more…)