Archive for December, 2011


“He will wipe away every tear from their eyes.  There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” – Revelation 21:4

What a glorious day to anticipate!  The very hope promised with His return of no more suffering or pain or death – what an incredible day indeed!

My charge today and always is to hold onto the eternal hope that is held in His remarkable return.  Though there is death and mourning, crying and pain for now, a day is coming when there will be no more.  It will be a time of out with the old and in with the forever new.

As I sit in quiet reflection on a year gone by and anticipate all that is yet to be in the  coming year, the overwhelming emotion in my heart is gratitude.  I am grateful for His unending faithfulness to me as a loving Father.  In the darkness, He shone His light and covered me in the warmth of His wings.  In the new, He has granted me courage to continue forward, despite the disappointment of my former failure that fought to hold me back.  He has shown me again and again how He can turn my mourning into dancing and my sorrow into songs of joy.  Miraculously, He even uses those places of brokenness to bless and encourage others.  I am overwhelmed and in awe of the Almighty.

My prayer is that this would be a new year of blessing as you discover more and more of our Heavenly Father’s heart for you.

May your new year be filled with His peace that passes all understanding and your hope secure in your heavenly home.

With love because He first loved me,

Shannon

© Shannon Elizabeth Moreno and Revelations in Writing, May 2011 – present

“You are worthy, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for You created all things, and by Your will they were created and have their being.” – Revelation 4:11

God alone is worthy of all praise.  My very life exists because He wanted me to be here.  He had a plan and a purpose for my life, long before it came to be.  In all things, and at all times, He deserves my praise.

This has really hit home over the past several days, as we first cared for both of our boys as they were slammed by a sickness during our time on the coast, and then upon our return, both Super Spouse and I were flattened with the same flu.  I don’t remember the last time that I felt that ill.  Between each bout in the bathroom, I attempted to lay down and rest.  My mind mulled over His goodness and grace for us, despite this malicious malady.  My mom was able to stay an extra day so that our boys were well cared for.  She took good care of us too.  Her presence was His presence made tangible.

Our Heavenly Father loves us so much that He provides comfort in the middle of our discomfort.  He alone is worthy of all glory and honor and praise!

Heavenly Father, please continue to teach me to recognize Your presence and Your grace at all times and in all circumstances.  Thank You for loving me so well.  Amen.

© Shannon Elizabeth Moreno and Revelations in Writing, May 2011 – present

Shattering Shadows

“Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path.” – Psalm 119:105

The word of God not only shows us where we are to go, but will remain with us and guide us, lighting our path as we walk forward in faithful obedience to what He teaches us.

God’s word is alive and active.  It is always applicable to my life and whatever waits before me.  When I spend time in His word and take in truth, it finds way to dark spaces and sheds light, illuminating the path on which I am to travel.  That light will continue to brighten and become more easily seen as it is fueled.  Time in the word fans the flames of my faith and illuminates the path that I am meant to take.  Not only does the light on the path before me burn brighter, but He who is in me is more easily seen.  I do not desire to dwell in darkness, rather I long to live entirely in His loving light.  Light removes darkness and shatters shadows as it is strengthened.

My prayer is that He continues to illuminate the dark spaces in my soul so that His light may shine ever brighter in and through me.  May He shatter my shadows so that I may shine brightly for my Savior.

© Shannon Elizabeth Moreno and Revelations in Writing, May 2011 – present

This few day stretch that follows Christmas was meant to be an opportunity for my sister and her family, my mom, and my own family, to gather together in one of our favorite places on the Oregon coast.  Super Spouse willingly sacrificed sleep to join us for the five-hour drive on his first day off in many consecutive days.  The drive began quite well, and the boys were happily entertained with their various electronic entertainment options that were accompanying them on our trip.  Traffic moved swiftly and we arrived in good time. 

The cousins got right to playing, and soon joyful laughter and running feet were readily heard through the house.  The afternoon continued without incident, and Super Spouse even had the opportunity to retreat to our room to rest.  Then, without warning, Cautious came to me with stomach cramps…

And so it began.  Cautious continued to complain of abdominal cramping, and not long later, Adventurous announced that he too, had similar symptoms.  At first, it seemed that it was a case of twin sympathy pain, but later proved to be genuine.  All night long, Mom, Super and myself were up and down with both boys as they seemed to alternate rounds to the restroom.  Both boys became severely dehydrated, and my concerns that we might have to cruise to the ER, were growing.  Fortunately, they both seemed to have completely depleted their systems of every inkling of waste by the wee hours of the morning, and were able to begin taking in a bit of Gatorade to rehydrate.

The thing about the ordeal that really was remarkable to me, was how my typically not-so-tough Cautious, took it all in stride.  At the first onset of ache, he sweetly asked me if I would pray for him.  His faith, despite his haggard state, was firm.  He knew the true source of strength in every situation, even in the onset of this fiasco of a flu bug, was the Heavenly Healer.  Cautious only asked that I stay near him, and he did not complain.  He was the toughest little trooper ever, despite being the sickest he likely can ever recall.  He displayed an unshakeable faith that filled my Momma’s heart with gratitude and awe at the grace given by God to my sick son.

Though I had been praying for my sweet boys to feel better, the quiet and confident faith found in my son, filled my heart and mind with the peace that only Christ can bring in the center of crisis.  Despite my exhaustion, my heart is full, knowing that God held hands and hearts through the yuck. 

I am reminded anew of how critical it is that we call on Christ if we want to be able to take it all in stride.  He alone provides what we need, no matter what the circumstance.  He is present, even in the putrid places.

© Shannon Elizabeth Moreno and Revelations in Writing, May 2011 – present

“The third time He said to him, ‘Simon son of John, do you love me?’ Peter was hurt because Jesus asked him the third time, ‘Do you love me?’ He said, ‘Lord, you know all things; you know that I love you.’  Jesus said, ‘Feed my sheep.” – John 21:17
 
I love that God is a God of redemption.  Peter, who had only days prior, denied Jesus three times and wept bitterly about it, was now given the opportunity to again profess his love and loyalty to the Lord.
 
Jesus still operates the same way.  He will find our place of greatest regret, and redeem it for His glory.  He is the God of second chances and the only One who can create beauty from ashes.
 
In my life, I can clearly see how it is so.  He has taken my darkest days and delivered me into a place of delight.  I find myself in awe daily of all that He has done.  His faithfulness conquered my fear.  What caused chaos for many months, has now become a place of calm; cleansed and fueled by the courage of Christ. 
 
He redeems us from ruin and raises us to be His hands and heart, often in the very place of our prior brokenness.  He alone redeems our wreckage and calls us His kids.
 
What a treasure to behold from He who was born in such a simple and humble space, only to be seated for all eternity at the right hand of the Father.
 
I am so grateful that He has brought beauty from my ashes, and provided light to the formerly shadowed spaces.
 

© Shannon Elizabeth Moreno and Revelations in Writing, May 2011 – present

Ode to Christmas

Eager anticipation
awaiting the day
where untold treasure
below the tree lay.
The joy in the eve
where the candles are lit
Christmas songs singing
dreams of Saint Nick.
Up before dawn
so early they rise
soon to discover
delight in their eyes.
Tis’ nothing so sweet
as their heads bowed in thanks
for toys and treasures
tricks and some pranks.
Yet not to forget
the greatest gift of all
the birth of our Savior
for one and for all.
It is by His grace
that we have hope we may hold
His love and His life
shall forever be told.
Today on this day
as we gather in love
may we take time to thank Him
for His Gifts from above.

© Shannon Elizabeth Moreno and Revelations in Writing, May 2011 – present

No Greater Gift

“This is my command: Love each other.” – John 15:17

Jesus did not merely suggest that we love one another, He commanded it.  For without love, nothing else matters.

“There is no greater love than He who lays down His life for His friends.” – John 15:13  Jesus came into the world, humble and vulnerable as a baby.  He grew and faced the same trials we face and more.  He was mocked, persecuted, abandoned and ultimately hung on a cross to die – yet He alone was without sin.  He did not fight the need to die in our place, rather He willingly walked the long and arduous ascent so that He could carry the cost of our crime, and bore the punishment for all of humanity’s sin.

Jesus laid down His life for His created.  Though all of creation could have been made His minions, He instead gave us the freedom to choose, and He completely considers us friends.  As we come to Him, we are welcomed with open arms into His forever family with a heavenly home that is being prepared for our eternal presence with Him.

I am overwhelmed with love and adoration as I look not only to the manger, but also to the cross on this holy eve.

My prayer is that I might live a life worthy of the precious price presented by the Prince of Peace.

I desperately desire to make my Heavenly Dad proud of His daughter.  Thankfully, there is nothing I can do to make Him love me more or less, for He already loves me with His whole life for all of eternity.  He is so very good!

May His peace be present as you ponder and embrace the greatest gift we have ever been given.  Merry Christmas, for God is with us!

© Shannon Elizabeth Moreno and Revelations in Writing, May 2011 – present

His Love

“A new command I give you.  Love one another.  As I have loved you, so you must love one another.  By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” – John 13:34-35

One of the last things that Jesus told to His disciples at their final supper together on the night that He was betrayed, was to love each other just as He had loved.  It is by that love, that others would see and come to know Him as their Savior.

Jesus was the ultimate example of how I am to love.  He showed kindness and compassion to all who came to Him.  He was humble and

Gift by Steve Hochman

willingly served others, despite His authority over all the earth.  He gave of Himself with no expectation of anything in return.  He loved with His whole life, even unto death on a cross.  His ultimate sacrifice paid the price so that all who seek Him, may find Him, and behold the way to eternal life.  He left His Spirit to dwell in us so that we may be empowered to know and understand who He truly is and what He is calling each of us to do.  He equips us for all that He calls us to do.  He grants us His heart to love even the most unlovable, He provides humility to serve those in need, and He gives us His eyes to see His created so that we might be His hands and heart to nations in need of Him.

As we approach the blessed day to remember His birth, may we recognize the greatest gift that was ever given, is still available and ready to be received.

My prayer, is that we each may be equipped to receive anew, the very treasure that is God with us, so that we may in turn impart that very gift to all who are in need.

May His blessed peace dwell in your heart as you receive the glorious gift of His grace, and give to others out of the fullness which you have already received.

Merry Christmas to you!

© Shannon Elizabeth Moreno and Revelations in Writing, May 2011 – present

Courage to Cry

“When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who had come along with her also weeping, He was deeply moved in spirit and troubled.” – John 11:33  It goes on to say, “Jesus wept”, in verse 35.

Jesus dearly loved Mary, Martha and Lazarus.  When Mary came to Him in her sorrow over the loss of her brother, Lazarus, Jesus was deeply moved.  He was full of compassion for those He loved, and He too was moved to tears.  His heart for her in her loss, caused Christ to cry.

For me, this is an incredible display of both compassion and vulnerability.  Christ, the King of all creation, Who has the power and authority to move heaven and earth, allowed His heart to be heard as He wept.  For as long as I can recall, this has been a serious spot of struggle for me.  How can I be strong, if I let go and appear “weak”? 

What I am learning is that what I had thought was a sign of weakness, is really a show of strength.  It takes tremendous courage to be transparent in the midst of trials.  Courage is required to display compassionate tears.  It is easy to throw up fortress walls that are paired with “fine”.  Phenomenal faith in the Father is required to really allow the raw and tender spots to be seen.  Without trust in Him that He has my heart and my hand, the willingness to be transparent is totally absent.

If the Lord of my life is willing to weep when He is moved by sorrow or compassion, then I too ought to allow His hand to touch my heart as I extend it to Him.  I must be willing to allow what is hidden in my heart to be heard.  He will not allow my tears to be trampled.  He will triumph as I trust, and He will teach me again that there is safety, even in sorrow.

My prayer is that I will continue to learn to trust Him when my heart is troubled, and allow Him to hold my hand and wipe my tears.  He is tender and worthy of my trust, even in trials throws that tear me to tears. 

I am so grateful for His kindness and compassion, even in sorrowful and soft spaces.

© Shannon Elizabeth Moreno and Revelations in Writing, May 2011 – present

Unbound

This morning as I was reading John 8, verses 31-32 held my attention.  The following is my response…

Every heart’s held captive

by the choices that we make

for where we place our passion

there our heart will stay.

If my heart seeks after truth

then truth is what will be seen

yet if I pursue other things

I’ll not know what truth truly means.

It is only in the truth

that freedom may be found

my heart finds new release

where it was previously bound.

To be a true disciple

His teachings I must hold

transformation only comes

when my hands and heart unfold.

Here I stand before Him

with arms held open wide

come and teach, transform me

may He forever be my guide.

Freedom is before me

destruction left far behind

the more I learn to trust Him

the more freedom that I find.

It is only by His grace

that true release is found

He alone frees the captives

from wherever we’ve been bound.

© Shannon Elizabeth Moreno and Revelations in Writing, May 2011 – present

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