Friday, June 26, 2015
Most of you know I made a move to Arizona last year and we are loving our new state. So a new place has inspired me to try a new "place" here in the blog world.
I have been trying my hand again in a redo on my blog. You can check me out on another site for now. The posts will still be the same: all about GOD! So if you are here, try checking out the link which you will have to put in your browser.
NEXT POST: SAND CASTLES AND FERRIS WHEELS.
Thanks for your patience and bless you too!
Wednesday, June 24, 2015
I am at the end of myself and I open my hands and bend my knees......and it's all surrender. It is surrender to the ONE who knows me by name. When my will is broken, then my knees bend and my view bends and my heart breaks.
One of the last greatest acts that JESUS did with HIS disciples was to take a towel around HIS waist and bend HIS knees to wash the disciple's feet. HE did this as an example of surrendering to HIS Father in Heaven and then....... HE surrendered HIS life.
Didn't Peter say: "LORD YOU shall never wash my feet!" Wasn't his first response to JESUS bending HIS knees a resounding no? Why did Peter say no when he so often professed to obey Jesus? Isn't it our human nature to resist when we must bend our will?
SO what about......
When I am asked to serve and my will resists......it's all surrender.
When I make that phone call I have been putting off........it's all surrender.
When I forgive first when I don't receive an apology.......it's all surrender.
When I write the note of encouragement without expecting any thanks back.......it's all surrender.
WHAT it really is about......
All of nature seems to surrender to the ONE who directs it whether it be the sun, moon or stars. Nature surrenders and our nature does not. I must ask then for the LORD to break my will and break my heart in a way that my knees break down to the floor. When you walk a while with the LORD, HE will find a way to do this for you! I might not like it, but my will has to break in order to surrender to my GOD. It really is all about GOD, not us!
But I still resist, I resist in my thoughts, words and deeds every single day. I say my way and GOD says, no, the best way is ME. Resisting is dare I say......pride? I don't want to be prideful if I can help it. In bending the knees, I become humble and grateful for the ONE I adore. A grateful heart is a humble heart. Our GOD asks us to surrender.......surrender our lives, hearts and souls, and then take up HIS cross. And when we are on those bent knees, we will find that we really stand securely before GOD who is our rock and redeemer.
ROMANS 14: 11 "As I live, says the LORD, every knee shall bow to Me, and every tongue shall confess to GOD."
NEXT POST COMING SOON: SAND CASTLES
Friday, June 19, 2015
Sometimes I wake up with a heavy heart as I am sure you have those days as well. Following the news recently makes you count and recount all your blessings. Realizing there are people today waking up without their loved ones and I wonder how do they bear this burden? And it is a fact that occurs each day and I ask GOD why? Why am I blessed to have my child when someone is not? The whys of this world lay a heavy burden on us sometimes......so how do we come to grips of not knowing the answer?
It comes down to realizing that GOD is GOD and I am not. There are questions without answers this side of Heaven and if I am going to put my whole heart and soul into the ONE who is the MAKER, then I must realize that in my own soul I cannot find the answers to all my questions. Some must be left to be answered on the other side of Heaven. Honestly..... if we did have all the answers, what would we need a loving GOD for?
Yes, HE is our Maker and the Maker loves us. HE loves us like a father who loves their child and sometimes says: "you are not ready to know all the answers." Don't we do this with our children? Sometimes we don't let them know the whole story because they aren't mature enough to know......there are some things we never share with them.
Our GOD of the universe is Sovereign and Holy and all knowing because we can't be. We must take this knowledge on faith and faith alone. We have to be ok with not having all the answers because we trust HIM instead. Our faith should be child-like and innocent and pure. We need to come before HIM and call HIM: "ABBA FATHER" and ask HIM for precious rest that only HE can give, because this world cannot and will not give us the type of rest our souls need.
So when your heart is heavy, crawl up into HIS lap and spend some sweet time there. Let HIS loving arms wrap around you and be still enough to just know that HE is in control. GOD made the universe and HE knows what HE is doing each and every day with it. HIS grace pours down from Heaven for us.......we just need to open our hands.....and receive. When we do, our hearts will be lifted up upon HIS glory, with burden lifted and heart shifted towards HIM who loves us more than we can ever imagine!
LEVITICUS 20:26 " And you shall be Holy to ME, for I the LORD am Holy, and have separated you from the peoples, that you should be MINE."
Friday, June 12, 2015
I must admit this view of our earth is pretty......all blue and white and green. GOD knew what HE was doing when HE created us. But in the news of the world as of late, we as human beings are not that pretty. Oh the way of our world right now is scary and our human actions are getting us to a tipping point. And is it a point of no return?
Yes, satan would like us to think that way and it is definitely his world right now. And satan would love nothing better than for all of us to give up. We seem to be out of control with each other. And our words to one another are pure ugly. What has happened to self control and even control on the internet? I recently heard of a report where a Dad shamed his daughter by cutting off all her beautiful hair and then posting it online for all to see! He thought he was parenting her by shaming her in this way and all he managed to do was to push her to suicide a couple of days later. What in the world was he thinking?
The news seems to shock every single day by these outrageous kinds of stories. There seems to be only selfishness and no one has compassion for anyone anymore. It is enough to make you want to throw in the towel and crawl under a rock. Discouraging us is satan's motto.
As a Christian you're life can and is a permanent sermon to all around you.....JESUS asks us to be like HIM: humble, forgiving, loving and merciful. But not just some of the time....all the time! I know that is very hard to do and believe me I fail at this daily.....but the more I bask in HIS light and love, the more I dislike myself when I do act like the rest of the world. The HOLY SPIRIT has a way of convicting you.....sometimes immediately! Opps I didn't really say that did I??
We are so blessed in this country and we are so ungrateful! How that must grieve the HOLY SPIRIT too. We must challenge ourselves then, to live in a different way.....to live as an example of JESUS and HIS love. How can we touch those around us? Let us start by noticing each and every person who comes across our paths, and especially those no one notices. Let's look each other in the eye to "see" the inner soul and take a break from looking down at our phones! I don't want to be the person who didn't get into Heaven because I never bothered to look up! LOL!
We are HIS light in this dark world. We have the power to change those around us just by a smile, a nod of recognition and a kind word. Remember the world is not about us, it's about GOD and HIS plan for it all. Choose to be different......choose to love differently. We must understand that when we are stamped by GOD'S nature, HIS blessing will come through us to others in a way we never could have done ourselves. We are set apart from the world as the body of CHRIST that has many parts. HIS power in the HOLY SPIRIT is available to us so that we can work for the LORD and let all the ugliness of the world roll off our backs. Let's trust HIM in every step we take because the good and final word is that in the end, when our Savior returns, we......win!
EPHESIANS 2: 1-5 "As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our sinful nature and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature objects of wrath. But because of HIS great love for us, GOD who is rich in mercy, made us alive with CHRIST even when we were dead in transgressions - it is by grace you have been saved."
Monday, June 1, 2015
I am rapidly approaching my one year mark of our move here to Arizona. Believe me I am so grateful that we are adjusting to all it has to offer. I recently took a trip back to Colorado where we lived for 30 years and it was funny how it felt so different to me in just being gone one year.
With that said, my point is that noticing my surroundings while I was visiting, made me realize how much an area can change over the course of a year. People change too, but the friendships that are rooted in stone do not. I must admit that I was entertained by angel friends last week. You know the kind......where you can literally see their wings?
My friends that I had missed so much, did all they could to make me feel welcomed and loved. There really are no words for friends that do this with ease.....it is their gift for sure. It was as if I were being embraced by HIS hand with my every need taken care of and grace upon grace.
Our GOD is the GOD of the universe and the GOD of relationship. HE puts supreme importance on this and some relationships are a blessing and some are a lesson in this life. You must take stock of who that is and why. Some people come into our lives to stay until our lives end, and others come and go. And sometimes GOD will change your circle of friends and people to change your life.
My friends that have been a supreme blessing to me are those who put GOD first.......period. Believe me, I would never want to be in that top spot with someone. When you do that with anyone you are making them an idol in your life. Only our LORD has the right to be in that top spot. So I have to ask, does GOD come before your family and friends too? Only let HIM rule your heart.....period. Everything else and everyone else should come second, hands down, no excuses! But you say it is your child? No excuse, GOD comes first. And you say, it is your husband? No excuse, GOD comes before your love in your life. She or he is your BFF, no excuse, GOD comes first.
We all at one time or another have to look at our lives and see if our Sovereign LORD is the sovereign ONE over our life. Is HE your Savior, Shield, Sanctuary, Shepherd, first LOVE and your PASSION? Because if HE is not, I hate to break it to you, but your priorities are messed up.
Nothing and no one should come before HIM. It is plain and simple, no excuses. The day we figure this out is the day we surrender all to HIM and realize that it is all about GOD and not us! Putting GOD first allows us to see that all that we are and all that we have pales in comparison to HIM. GOD created us for HIM and HIM alone.
The day I realized this, was the day I surrendered my all to HIM, my life and my family and friends. And I committed myself to HIM not worrying what anyone else thought about it because I worry the most of what GOD thinks about me and I don't really have to answer to anyone, but HIM. PSALM 51:3 says: "And my sin is always before me. Against YOU, YOU only have I sinned." The Holy Spirit helps me every day to discern this truth. There is a peace about it that surpasses all else. And when we put GOD first, we really start living, not just existing for ourselves or for others. We trust GOD alone to provide for and love us in a way that no one else here can. It is wonderful to know that HE NEVER CHANGES......we do, but HE never will. HIS love and grace will always be there for us, eternal and never ending.......abundant and abiding.......and when we realize this fact, there really are no excuses to not put HIM first!
1 JOHN 4:19 "We love HIM because HE first loved us."
Friday, May 15, 2015
Oswald Chambers has a habit of making you look in the mirror about your faith in his devotional called: "My Utmost for HIS Highest." Recently I read a statement of his that made me really stop and take a hard look. He said: "all of us must work out the salvation that GOD has worked in us. You cannot do anything for your salvation, but you must do something to manifest it, you must work out what GOD has worked in." Once we understand that we are saved, forgiven and redeemed by our LORD JESUS and understand HIS dying on the cross for us, then it is up to us to choose what exactly we are going to do about it. It is our responsibility to always do for HIM to others as HE has done for us. What about that mercy, grace and love for others? Doesn't CHRIST have plenty of that for us?
Once JESUS touches us in a deep way, we are never the same and we never tire of working for HIM, in HIM and through HIM. Drawing close to HIM creates a hunger within that only HE can satisfy. And that is a good thing because nothing in this world will satisfy like HE will. HIS daily love for us, spurs us on each and every day......HE is our everlasting strength and joy.
Now my way of working out my salvation might look entirely different from yours. And it should! We are all different for a reason so don't try to fit into someone else's mold for you. Don't try to do it like someone else. Some people will have a laundry list of their daily piety. Don't listen to it. There will be those who will try to tell you how you should be doing things, but listen with your heart to HIM and HIM alone! Stop, be still and really listen to HIM. HE knows every hair on our head and knows what is best for us. The problem with our natures is that we tend to listen to what someone else says rather than what GOD says!
CHRIST knows we are all very different from one another, all with different gifts and abilities that allows us to function as the Body of CHRIST in our broken world. When we rejoice in our LORD we become that beacon of light for those who are lost. And we all have unique ways of shining that light of HIS. Maybe you serve at Church, or write letters to someone who is lonely. You might visit the sick or volunteer in a homeless shelter. Whatever we do, we all do together collectively and thus we are able to reach as many as we can...... even around the world!
So whatever you do, do it all as if you are working for the LORD. HE will never steer you wrong......HE guides and HE leads with a gentle hand. May GOD give us spiritual strength and athleticism to face anything that comes our way. As we walk through each of our days, may we authentically work "out" what GOD has worked "in"!
Friday, May 1, 2015
More often than not when we apply for a job we do so knowing we are qualified. We have that resume ready and are confident in our abilities. In Christ's kingdom things are quite different. GOD sends HIS HOLY SPIRIT to assist us and we are not to wait until we feel qualified.
So I must ask, do you feel qualified for HIS work wherever you are? Do you know that if you don't, that is a good thing? If we feel inadequate and unqualified then that allows the HOLY SPIRIT to work within us in ways we could never do as humans. The SPIRIT working within us changes our hearts and develops gifts of our character that we never knew we had. Walking closely with the SPIRIT gives us the discernment to say and do for others just at the right moment without realizing the impact. Relying on the SPIRIT allows us to never take the credit.....all credit then goes to HIM who works within us.
After we moved to Arizona, I very quickly found a church that I now love. It wasn't long before I joined the First Impressions Team where we greet those walking onto our campus. A couple of months back there was a sweet woman who asked me where she should go to find out more about the church. I took her by the hand to the proper place and while we were walking together, I told her I was new too, welcomed her and told her how much I loved the church and our beautiful campus. Or at least this is what I remember saying to her now. As I left her in good hands, I wondered how it would turn out for her.
About a month later I was walking into the 9:00 service and there she was! And not only that, she had a lanyard on for First Impressions! I couldn't believe my eyes, but then very quickly realized that with GOD all things are so possible and we are just HIS hands and feet here. Since then, this beautiful woman and I have had opportunities to talk and serve together. If someone would have asked me to sign up people for welcoming in our church I would have said no way! But with the HOLY SPIRIT'S help that day, and it's working within me, I must have said just the right thing to make an impression on this woman.
We all have gifts that are not of our own abilities, but those gifts are empowered by the HOLY SPIRIT. And HE will refine and develop them for a new level of use in a specific time in your life.....your gifts and abilities are being developed daily when you walk in GOD'S word. So you never have to doubt if you can do something in HIS kingdom, but you must TRUST and leave HIS good work within you in HIS capable HANDS.
Remember CHRIST'S disciples? None of them were qualified to do CHRIST'S work until they were filled with the HOLY SPIRIT. In Acts 2:38 Peter says to repent and be baptized and "you will receive the gift of the HOLY SPIRIT." If we are unqualified, just as those disciples were, then GOD with HIS manifestation of the SPIRIT will make us qualified.
We need to live every day with the SPIRIT of willingness to just jump right in! Don't think too hard about it or whether you are qualified or not for the task..... just do it. GOD knows what HE is doing and you can't go wrong with HIM. Our job is to walk with HIM and TRUST HIM with all that we are. Truly, HE is up for the task and is bigger than anything in this world. We are HIS ambassadors living out our lives as examples of GOD'S love in this broken world. HE will continue to qualify the unqualified. So walk on spirit-filled friends, don't wait until you feel qualified.... you already are!
ISAIAH 6:8 Then I heard the voice of the LORD saying, "whom shall I send? And who will go for us?" And I said, "here am I. Send me!"