Sunday, July 29, 2012

Sunday Verse- Matthew 6: 28-30

"And why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow.  They do not labor or spin.  Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these.  If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith?"  Matthew 6: 28-30

 How much faith is what I need...God says faith of a mustard seed can move a mountain. (Matthew 17:20)  That seed is small and mine sadly has been smaller but I have seen answered prayers.  Just when finances seem scary and there is yet another cost...(sometimes self inflicted- like locking the keys in the car, taking the side mirror off when pull out to go to the ER) a check comes in the mail.  Random checks like from our health insurance twice, reimbursement from the boys old preschool, etc.  God has been faithful even when my faith has been even smaller than a mustard seed.

God is real and personal God that has thus far provided for my needs, my families needs; even when the situation is and has been hard.  If God takes care of the wildflowers that I photographed on vacation in Colorado, how much more will he care for me (and you)!!

Friday, July 20, 2012

Kisses from Katie- by Katie Davis

I have just finished reading an amazing book Kisses from Katie.  Though it is a book about depravity in Uganda and a young single woman adopting 14 girls; I learned about the depravity of my brokenness and how to more deeply love my busy boys.

"I have learned along my journey that if I really want to follow Jesus, I will go to the hard places.  Being a Christ follower means being acquainted with sorrow.  We must know sorrow to be able to fully appreciate joy.  Joy costs pain, but the pain is worth it.  After all, the murder had to take place before the resurrection.

I'll be honest: the hard places can seem unbearable.  It's dark and it's scary, and even though I know God said He will never leave or forsake me, sometimes it's so dark that I just can't see Him.  But then the most incredible thing happens: God takes me by the hand and walks me straight out of the hard place and into the beauty on the other side.  He whispers to me to be thankful, that even this will be for His good.

It takes awhile sometimes, coming out of the dark place.  Sometimes God and I come out into a desert and he has to carry me through that too.  Sometimes I slip a lot on the way out and He has to keep coming back to get me.  Always, on the other side is something beautiful, because He has used the hard place to increase my sense of urgency and to align my desires with His..."
Kisses from Katie

This excerpt is from Kisses from Katie and it just expresses beautifully how I feel and believe about my my life and struggle with depression.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Living out of Fear...NO MORE!!

2 Timothy 1:7, "For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline." (NIV)

Have you ever learned a lesson, but the second time you really learn it....Bang!!  An epiphany; or more like a working of God's Holy Spirit in me through others to remind me of the truth I first learned in High School.

I was blessed with a wonderful High School Pastor, Jeff Timblin; whom on all our mission trips had us memorize scripture for each day.  2 Timothy was one of the books I "had to" memorize.  I did it and I learned the scripture but parts of it weren't applicable to my life.

Despite the less than enthusiastic commitment to memorize in High School; I was recently convicted that I have been living in a spirit of fear.  Through a friend praying for me!

What truth and what bondage I was living in... for the God that created the universe did not give me a spirit of fear.  I can walk in confidence with the spirit of power and of love and of self-discipline.

I love the KJV of 2 Timothy 1:7, "For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind."  -- How pertainant this is to my last several months of life; fear is not of God's spirit!!  Again I am reminded of his power, love and a sound mind are given by God through his spirit. These truths I pray and have!!  And this is how I have been living the last two weeks.

So living out of Fear... NO More!!

Philippians 4:7 "And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Sunday verse- 2 Chronicles 20:3-4

"Alarmed, Jehoshaphat resolved to inquire of the Lord, and he proclaimed a fast for all Judah.  The people of Judah came together to seek help from the Lord; they came from every town in Judah to seek him."

Alarmed, the king of Israel made his first action one of inquiring of the Lord.  He didn't call his friends or try on his own strength to prepare for the alarming event that was coming his way.  How many times do I try to come up with a plan to make my circumstance easier, or call a friend for their opinion.  Rather I want to inquire of the Lord first while I invite those that fellowship with me to join me in seeking help from the Lord. 

Then while they fasted and inquired of the Lord; in their prayer they remembered the ways that God had been faithful in the past.  Even listing the specifics.  May I have a heart that takes time to remember all that God has done!

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Psalm 13

How long.  Lord? Will you forget me forever? How long will you hide your face from me?

How long must I wrestle with my thoughts and day after day have sorrow in my heart? How long will me enemy triumph over me?

Look on me and answer, Lord me God.  Give light to my eyes, or I will sleep in death, an my enemy will say, "I have overcome him." and my foes will rejoice when I fall.

But I trust in your unfailing love; my heart rejoices in your salvation.

I will sing in Lord's praise, for he has been good to me.

(NIV italicized my me)

 Lord help me to stay far from the steps of wickedness; or stand in the way that sinners take; or sit with mockers, but help me find those that delight in the Law of the Lord, and those who meditate on Your law day and night.  For you say in Psalm 1 that person is like a tree planted by the streams of water, which yield fruit in season (and in your designed season).  May I be a tree that does not wither, rather prosper for your glory Lord!!  (paraphrased prayer from psalm 1:1-3)

Please Hear the Cry of my Heart and others that are praying along side me and that are struggling too!!

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Hatching to freedom

New life has begun...

It is truly a miracle that it does: new life beginning. We watched from our front porch the work of a diligent mother care for her babies that haven't even hatched. To and fro she flies collecting the best bits for her babies. She is easily scared off when we get close. Quickly flying to the top of a nearby tree. Eyes always on her clutch. One writer from National Geographic suggests that she is trying to deter preditors away from her hidden nest deep within the safety of our tree...

Mom birds are known to pull the softest feathers from their own chest to pack the nest extra soft for the eggs and soon to hatch chicks. (A wonderful example of a mother's sometimes painful insustration of sacrifice).  Hatching eggs can take up to 24 hours to hatch, using their sharp beak to escape from the inside out. Most eggs hatch unasissted...almost like that exertion is a right of passage for the bird. Despite the fact that the mother bird would gladly help those babies into the world, she can not. Her beak would injure the hatchlings if she tried. Her talons do not have the dexterity to gently peel off the shell. There is no mom to help break them free from their hard shell. The chicks have to do it alone.

Before I could even get another picture the nest was empty. Mommy birds begin to make the nest uncomfortable so that the baby bird will find it wings and fly. Some mommy birds are known to push the babies out to their own nest, and safety to fly. Not the way that I would want to leave a wonderful place to rest.

Here is the contrast of God's love for us; he wants us to rest in him safely. Ironically I joined this wonderful group of women after God's heart called the ROOST. Kind of fitting for the illustration of the nest in our tree. On Roost is defined as - a place for sitting, resting, or lodging. In my allagory, the nest in my front tree reminds me of the journey that God has me on. I would love to just stay there in that converted upstairs garage and fellowship in the safety of women of God.  In my only three experiences at this jam packed group of wome I have seen rest.  I have felt the softest feathers of God's safety. 

I am still still struggling, sometimes I don't even find safety inside my own self; but yet I am invited daily to rest in God's presences in the soft nest of Resting in him (which is a whole other topic).  Matthew 11:30, "For my yoke is easy and my burden is light."  Doesn't that sound wonderful!!  Its a world that wants to at some time push us out of the nest.  There is a God that wants you and I to draw even closer tn him and abide with Him in his nest.  James 4: 8, "Draw near to God, and he will and he will draw near to you..." (NKJV) 

Lord may I be the eggs in your nest and when I hatch may I continue to find myself returning to you instead of flying away.

"Faith is putting all you eggs in God's basket, then counting your blessings before they hatch."

- Ramona C. Carroll