Karen's Devotions

This is a selected collection of my devotions e-published on Daily Devotions, Journey Christian Church, Irvine, California; George Bragg, Editor. To join the mailing list, email George, gbragg@cox.net.

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As a 25+ year homeschooling vet, post-cancer, math prof, mother of five, master's track and field athlete, and certificated private pilot, I have a lot to share about what God has done in my life. In 2000 I began writing devotions as something to try when it seemed like accoustic pianists were becoming an endangered species at church. I have since found great blessings from writing and sharing. God is good.

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Sliver of Wisdom

First published Oct. 19, 2016

Proverbs 3:21
My son, do not let wisdom and understanding out of your sight,
preserve sound judgment and discretion

A couple of nights ago I was doing a craft project with wooden skewers.  I snapped one in half and was surprised by a sharp pain in my finger.  A sliver of wood dug into my skin. Ouch.  I then considered my options about this little annoying thing.

I could do nothing in hopes that the discomfort would not increase and an infection would not develop.  Better yet, it could eventually work its way out on its own, and my problem would have solved itself.

I could rely on my own expertise and try to remove the sliver myself. That would shorten the time I would have enduring the pain, but my success rate with removing slivers is actually low.  I’d run the risk of breaking off part of the wood, or pushing it deeper into my flesh.

My third option was to get help from someone who could properly remove the sliver. I wisely chose my daughter Heather to help me out.

Interesting how committing a sin seems easy compared to dealing with its consequences.  I’m not talking about covering up the effects of our sin, but I think there are several issues that we must consider when we commit sinful acts and thoughts.

The first issue is restitution. A given for New Testament Believers is that we confess our sinfulness, ask for forgiveness.  But many of us think that’s enough.  In fact, how many of us were taught or teach to our children to say, “I’m sorry,” then just walk away?  Seriously, we need to ask God for guidance to find the right path in reconciling with the people whom we have harmed. And surprise! Restoring takes time and effort. 

And what about doing nothing about sin, hoping the guilt (in any form) will go away? NOT. Okay, let’s just pray for divine intervention.  After all, God is merciful and gracious, but he is not a fix-it handyman to be implemented at our every whim. 

Secondly, though self-reliance is a sign of confidence in our Christian walk, we should have the right attitude to do the right thing. Good seeds produce good fruit.

Psalm 25:9

He guides the humble in what is right and teaches them his way.

Wednesday, October 05, 2016

Another Birthday!

October 6th is my 2428th prime birthday!
I will be 21613 days old.

Box of Colors

First Published October 5, 2016

2 Timothy 3:16

All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking,

correcting and training in righteousness

When I was in Kindergarten I remember getting a box of 8 large Crayola ® Crayons. I liked staring at the array of choices with which I could “color my world.”  I also learned the names and spellings of the colors: black, violet, blue, green, red, orange, yellow, and brown.

In First Grade I got another box of 8 crayons, but this time, they were smaller, to match my better dexterity.  I now could concentrate on finer lines and more detail in my coloring projects.

When I received my box of 16 crayons I was ecstatic! I could now use new colors carnation pink, blue green, blue violet, red orange, red violet, white, yellow green, and yellow orange. I felt so much more mature being able to express myself using a wide range of colors.  It also became more confusing to discuss colors with others.  Did orange mean orange, yellow orange, or red orange?

By the time I received a box of 24 crayons in sixth grade, I wasn’t doing much coloring, but I was awestruck over the new colors.  But still, that wasn’t the end. Crayola had the 48 and 64 count boxes with incredible colors like Orchid, Olive, and Magenta.

And still, as exciting as I was to be able to describe my visual thoughts using so many colors and combinations of colors, there was increasing problems of using these colors in conversation.  I remember someone insisting that there was no such thing as the color “olive.”

My point is that some of scripture is broad based like “God is love” (I John 4:16b).  Other verses are more precise like “Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.” (I John 4:8).

We should expand our “crayon box” by reading and studying the scriptures. This allows us to keeping in mind that some are simple with a wide range of interpretation, while others are more specific. Today, can we think about explaining the Good News simplistically with three “crayons”?  Can we also expand our palette to include more “colors” and more detail?  Let’s try it!

Thank you God, for the wonderful colors you have given us in this world!  Help us to realize the simplicity of the primary colors of the Gospel as well as the intricate hues of your Word.  Also Lord, please give me the patience and understanding to accept the simple three-color verses as well as the enriched multicolor words inspired by you. I humbly ask this in your Son Jesus’ name, amen.

Copyright 2016, Karen Vaughn

TopTen Reasons NASA Should Choose Me As An Astronaut Candidate

10.         I’ve wanted to be an astronaut since I was nine years old.

9.           I’m a well-rounded person with accomplishments in sports, craft arts, and writing.

8.           I’m an active member of aviation organizations.

7.           I have a private pilot’s license with over 180 hours flight hours.

6.           I have a current 2nd class FAA medical certificate.

5.           I have over 40 years teaching Mathematics at the university level as a member of the Cal Poly Pomona faculty in excellent standing.

4.           I have a B.S. and M.S. in mathematics.

3.           I am a 27 year cancer survivor.

2.           I have stable family and friendship relationships.

1.  (Drum roll please)     I have the (off the chart) bone density of adult males half my age!
  Karen in the left seat on SOFIA!!!