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Friday, September 20, 2013

~ DAYBREAK -a poem about a child's return home


She fills the house with prance

She sparkles glitter where she steps

and long-awaited smile returns to shower me with daybreak

to fragrance waiting rooms and to heal my broken heart

God’s sky is mauve…and Paige is home

and hugs are free
and night is day

and day breaks bright
and sparkle shines

and purple plays…
for Paige is Home

                Paper rainbows ribbon across a waiting heaven
as purple plush breaks pink above


Jeremiah 31: 3

The Lord said:   I have loved thee with an everlasting
 love; therefore with loving kindness have I drawn thee.

 Carol Castagna
 © 10/2012


Fragile, sweet daughter, mine
Life has its way with us
Bending to its music, we rise
Take a place in its symphony hall
To blend with harps and flutes
To play a lush tomorrow
A royal song
From our joys and mourning combined
A water-colored rhapsody on canvas new
Bright and Blessed
 Love, Mama

                                                                Carol Castagna  (c) 10/2012

Isaiah 40: 31  They who wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength;   they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not be afraid.


                                           THE POWER OF THE LORD

  MARK 5: 1-20; 8:27 and 9:1

  Mark 5:1-20 tells us of  a man possessed of an unclean spirit, a man who could not be tamed, a mentally tormented man who "night and day, among the tombs and in the mountains, was always crying out and cutting himself with stones."   And Jesus said to the  unclean spirit, "Come out of the man you unclean spirit!"  And Jesus asked the spirit, "What is your name?"  He replied, "My name is Legion for we are many."  And the unclean spirit, (Legion) begged Him earnestly not to send them out of the country.  Now a great herd of pigs was feeding there on the hillside and they begged Him saying, "Send us to the pigs; let us enter them.  The Lord gave them permission.  And the unclean spirits came out of the man and entered the pigs, and the herd, numbering about two thousand, rushed down the steep bank into the sea and were drowned in the sea.  The herdsmen fled and told it in the city and in the country.  And people came to  see what it was that had happened.  And they came to Jesus and saw the formerly demon-possessed man, the one who had 'the legion,' sitting there, clothed and  in his right mind...and they were afraid."   Following a command from the Word of God, this man was healed.
  The man who was healed wanted to go into the boat, where Jesus was stepping but Jesus did not permit this.  What Jesus did say was, "Go home to your friends and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how much He has had mercy on you."  And he went to proclaim in the Decapolis, how much Jesus had done for him and everyone marveled.

These passages attest to man's emotional paralysis apart from the power of God; they attest to man's sanity when living in the will of God, near to the heart of God.   Helpless to break the chains that bind, without the compassion and mercy of our wonderful Lord, without the powerful intervention of God's hand upon our lives, we are lost and bound and separated from our Master, Savior, and King.

      When we approach the throne of God, in sweet, sincere abandon and make our requests known unto Him who loves us, a miraculous change occurs:  the winds are stilled ... the waters are calmed ... the turmoil is ceased. The Lord bids us come rest in Him.   Our Gentle Shepherd, He embraces us and teaches us to wait patiently for His direction.  There is a change in our hearts and lives because Jesus is living in us.  Old things are passed and new life in Christ begins.  The believer finds a new and sure way of living, a genuine communion with God through Christ:  he finds forgiveness and peace, a peace he has never known before.  God’s Holy Spirit now resides in him and he is set free from the chains that have bound him for so long.

         Through the renewal of our minds, The Lord allows us to know that we have been purchased with the costly price of Jesus’s blood spilled on Calvary. What a privilege to pray and sense His presence!  What a quiet miracle to bow before Him and sense his love without saying a word.  The love of God shatters the dark of night and leads us into the light of His life.  What a gift!                                                              Carol Castagna

                                                                © 10/2012 

..." and the peace that passes all understanding shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus" (Phil. 4:7).  "Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on Thee." (Isaiah 26:3)... Then He arose and rebuked the wind and said to the sea, ‘Peace, be still!’ And the wind ceased and there was a great calm.  Mark 4:39

John 1:12 But as many as believed Him, to them gave He power to be called the Sons of God.

Holy Bible NKJV:  Bible verses                                                    

~And Jesus said, 'Take up thy cross and follow me.'


And Jesus said, “Take up your cross and follow me.”  

Jesus speaks to us in Mark 8:27-9:1 about discipleship.  Clearly outlined as priority-guidelines for the Christian, the above scripture clarified a lifestyle for the disciple of Christ.  "Whosoever will come after me, let him deny himself, take up his cross and follow me ... whosoever will save his life shall lose it but whosoever shall lose his life for my sake and the gospel's shall save it.  

What place does the Lord Jesus hold in your life?  Is it first place?  I wonder if the Lord is requesting a daily renewal of our initial pledge of self-denial.  Does He not want us each day to accept His will anew for our lives ... earnestly and joyfully no matter what cross he has set before us that day?  Some days seem more difficult than others.  Some crosses seem heavier to bear.   Oh, that we may lift our hands and hearts and voices and say:  “But this cross is my joy…this daily cross, a step toward heaven, toward home.”  I sense that the Lord wants us yielded and resting afresh, every morning, every moment in this great love and that the cross of Christ in our lives is his message of healing and of hope.  "For now we see in a mirror darkly, but then face to face"   (1 Cor. 13:12). 

 This life on earth?  As pleasant as it can be, we all are born and we all must die.  Our time of earth is comparatively short…and seems especially short as we approach old age.  Self ~ without the love of God?   To what gain?  Jesus said; “For what shall if profit a man if he shall gain the whole world and lose his own soul?”  Mark 8:36.   The words written by Helen H. Lemmel are:   “The things of earth will grow strangely dim in the light of His glory and grace."   Those composed by Beverly Shea are:   “I’d rather have Jesus than anything this world affords today."   How sweet and assuring are Fanny Crosby’s inspired words that inspire trust to be led by "His nail-pierced hand" to life abundant "beyond the river,"   The composers encourage us to live in fullness of life, now.  They tell us that eternity is ours because God‘s promise is true.   We have been redeemed and made new by the blood of the Savior and we purpose diligently to be His disciples and bring honor to his Name.             
 Carol Ann T. Castagna
© October, 2012

Thursday, September 19, 2013

~Cradle Me, Lord


Cradle Me, Lord was written before I fell asleep one night…It was the end of a grueling day after having cared for my mom who suffered from Lewy-Body Dementia…Mom was in the latter stage of the illness which forced her to present with symptoms that had become increasingly pronounced.  She had become combative with me and nasty and suspicious of my grandchildren, which was just the opposite of her expression of enduring love for and attention to them (as well as showering them with their favorite things) before her illness.   And I was exhausted from the long, long day.


Cradle me, Lord

From cradle to grave

In the everlasting arms

That shield and heal         

Cradle me, Lord

I slip and fall

But not completely

For your power restrains me

And makes me stand again


Cradle me, Lord

To slumber sweetly

In Your presence

As day descends

Or as morning mists

Hold me steadfast

In Your loving grip

In Your timeless

Tender embrace 

                             Carol Castagna
                                   (c) October 2012

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Joy Comes in the Morning

A poem of thanksgiving and rejoicing in His promise

You have turned my mourning into dancing

My night into the sweet glow of moonlight

You’ve touched my life with the might of your

Healing hand and have comforted my soul in the desert

Lord, when I walked through briar and thistle, You guided my way

And lifted me close to your heart to breathe your sweet Presence

My soul sings your praise for directing me God-ward and upward

I am content to look toward heaven and to know the

Strength of your promise

It is You, oh God, my Portion, my Redeemer, my Joy

Who breathes new life into each new day…

Stay with me as I grow old and await your return.

 Carol Ann Castagna
© October 2012 

Isaiah 55: 12 and 13

“For ye shall go out with joy, and be led forth with peace; the mountains and the hills shall break forth before you into singing and all the trees of
The field shall clap their hands.

Instead of the thorn shall come up the fir tree, and instead of the brier shall come up the myrtle tree; and it shall be to the Lord for a name, for an everlasting sign that shall not be cut off.