And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin: And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. Matthew 6:28-29 ESV

One of the earliest memories I have of mom is her typing furiously on her Royal typewriter at the kitchen table. The melody of the tapping keys, punctuated by “ding” at the end of each line often, soothed me to sleep when I lay down for naps. Whenever mom wrote another book, she first began with research, which I think she liked the best. Being a Sci-Fi writer, she wanted to make sure her background on the people, planets and space travel actually fit with real science. In one of her books there were people who got around the way bats do, by their hearing. So, she studied braille, talked with blind people and asked them a million questions. Then after months of brainstorming, researching and outlining she began the rough draft with pen and paper. Because mom never had an office, the tall stacks of paper sat in piles on end tables, her nightstand or any handy flat surface in the house. Then came the second draft, on a thin cheap paper called onion skin. The wonderful nature of onion skin is that any attempt at erasure invariably leaves a hole in the page! This, mom meticulously edited, crossing off paragraphs here and there and filling the margins with notes accompanied by circles and arrows. Finally, after months of work, she was ready to break out the higher quality bond paper and begin her finished manuscript. The typing on the final was slower and mistakes were gently erased, with the correct letter carefully typed over the spot. Yet even after all the work that went into her manuscript, the journey from an idea to a book was not over. I still remember the day when she received the acceptance letter for her first book. You would think this might be a time of celebration, but far from it. The publisher was ready to publish the book only on the condition that she cut the book down from 500 to 250 pages. Mom burst into angry tears, shouting various things about the editor and then sat down and began her work again. Thinking back, I am amazed how anyone wanted to be a writer!

Photo by Tetyana Kovyrina on

In today’s world of word processing that cuts and pastes and autocorrects while smoothly and silently generating text, we move too quickly. We breeze through thousands of words, without taking time to consider the details. When Jesus tells us to consider the lilies of the field, He is saying more than just, “Don’t worry be happy!” He is telling us “Slow down enough to notice the lilies.”  Instead, we speed ahead, forgetting that God when spoke lilies into existence, He didn’t hurry. He carefully designed their root system and leaves and, chose the color of the blossom for every variety. Yet we rush past what God has given us, not only in His creation but in the lives of the people around us. He is commanding us to slow down, so we can see the beauty of people and flowers, noticing every detail and hovering like a hummingbird, appreciating its sweetness. Only then can the peace of God will flow into our minds as we consider, linger and trust that God has every detail of every day under His amazing and loving control!

Call 9-1-1!

My enemies trample on me all day long, for many attack me proudly. When I am afraid, I put my trust in you. In God, whose word I praise, in God I trust; I shall not be afraid. What can flesh do to me? 
Psalm 56:3-4 ESV

We had just started dinner, when we were interrupted by the all too familiar sound of a crash. “Call 9-1-1!” I shouted as I headed for the front door to get a better look. Because we lived on one of the main avenues near the center of our city, car accidents in front of our house happened regularly. We called so often that we knew the drill. “This is 911. Where is your emergency?” the operator would ask. In the Bible, Psalm 56 is God’s 9-1-1 number. Though I have often heard that one of the most repeated commands in the Bible is, “Do not be afraid.” I must confess that I am often still afraid. What I need is more than just a command to stop. I need to learn how, and today’s verse encourages me because it tells me I am not alone. David: the giant killer, who also killed a lion with his bare hands and who wrote most of the Psalms, was just like me. I love how he doesn’t mince words. He says straight up that, he is afraid – but – in his fearful moments he dials Heaven’s 9-1-1 number and begins to tell God about it! He says, “Help me, Lord! I am having a crisis here!” and we can do the same. When we dialed 9-1-1 in emergencies back home, we didn’t know who would pick up the phone, we would never get to meet that person or even know their name. But when we dial Heaven’s 9-1-1 number, we know who is picking up on the other end and we can trust that He won’t hang up. God will answer the call. He will listen to our emergency and He will come. Where is your emergency today? It’s time to pick up the phone and dial 9-1-1!

The Greatest Story That’s Ever Been Told!

Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. Matthew 6:31-32

Free from the love of money
And free from the fear of loss
Free from the fear of all others may say
Is peace found at the foot of the cross

For He calls us with all of our hearts to believe
And trust from the depths of our soul
In His promise to always be right where we are
The greatest story that’s ever been told!

Where sinners like me find acceptance
In God’s family of orphans and tramps
And the love of a Savior who shed blood for me
Says’ “I love you no matter the cost!”

And the morning shines bright with His presence
And His promise is better than gold
For He calls us with all of our hearts to believe
The greatest story that’s ever been told!

The Greatest Story That's Ever Been Told 
by Peter Caligiuri copyright 2021 all rights reserved