Thursday, November 29, 2012

Waited, broken, anguish, restored by God's Faithfulness

Isaiah 38:14-19

"I waited patiently till dawn, but like a lion he broke all my bones; day and night you made an end of me.

I cried like a swift or thrush, I moaned like a mourning dove. My eyes grew weak as I looked to the heavens. I am troubled; O Lord, come to my aid!

But what can I say?  He has spoken to me, and he himself has done this.  I will walk humbly all my years because of this anguish of my soul.

Lord, by such things men live; and my spirit finds life in them too.  You restored me to health and let me live.  

Surely it was for my benefit that I suffered such anguish.  In your love you kept me from the pit of destruction; you have put all my sins behind your back.  

For the grave cannot praise you, death cannot sing your praise; those who go down to the pit cannot hope for your faithfulness.  

The living, the living- they praise you, as I am doing today; fathers tell their Children about your faithfulness." (Emphasis is mine)


Lord knows I waited, felt broken, shed tears, moaned and grew weary.  The verses above is written by the King of Judah- Hezekiah after God spared his life from death.

I love how the scriptures, and in this case Hezekiah's writings so relate to feeling our lives and feelings today.  The scriptures are timeless, living word, active, and sharper than any double edged sword!!

 I too have felt like I have been on deaths door and have cried out to God for mercy from suppressed pain, or feelings that felt like I was going to die.  "Lord come to my aid!!"  He cried after turning his face from the prophet Isaiah that just told him he was going to die!!

 And guess what God answered him after the waiting, brokenness  tears, moaning, and weariness.  He was restored to health and promised 15 more years of life (as written in Isaiah 38).  He even calls his anguish being for his own benefit; that God even inflicted it in love to keep him from the pit of hopelessness and faithlessness.  Hear me again it says, "Surely it was for my benefit that I suffered such anguish."  Because, "In your love you kept me from the pit of destruction."

Oh Lord, God how you have kept me from the pit of destruction again and again.  Like Hezekiah may I walk humbly because of the anguish I have felt, sing your praises, and teach others about your faithfulness.

Amen

Monday, November 26, 2012

Nest...

 So the winds came Friday, every leaf blew off our neighbors tree exposing though a gift.  Poor Tyler had just blown our grass free of leaves, but that is beside the point I am going to make here.  The picture above is of Thanksgiving am from our backyard; the yellow leaves glowed like the sun. Trees full ,showing the newness of another season. As we walked after our small thanksgiving meal different hues of reds, orange, yellows; natures evidence of the wonder of change that our Lord created.

Well I sadly have to say that the winds came and blew inside of me and a storm started.  I would like to say that it was a storm of joy, gratitude, and thankfulness; but I haven't found any freedom in lying to you or to myself.  Rather wind of bitterness, anger, entitlement blew in from the south, biting anyone that got in my way (ie children and husband).

Like wise it truly was windy here in Texas and once I left my room, and pity party post explosion.  I sat and ate dinner with my family and this was the view; one lonely nest tightly secured on the top of one of the oak trees that had just glowed yellow the day prior.  It's mother made sure that this home was secure; the babies weren't responsible to hold on.  They were knit in so tightly there was no question where that nest was going, it was staying there.

I imagined that we (those that are followers of Christ) are like the nest and God is the gentle Father that so secured us to him that we aren't going anywhere when the winds blow.  We have become one with him, much like the nest has with the tree.  It grieves me to see my own sin, especially when it blows into my own face; but this I know I am secure in Christ.  He isn't going anywhere, nor am I.  I am secure!!  Oh how sweet is this that God has got such a tight hold on me that he isn't going to let go no matter what the storm may look like.
1 Corinthians 6:17, "But he who unites himself with the Lord is one with him in spirit."

Romans 8:31-35, "What, then, shall we say in response to this? If God is for us, who can be against us?  He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all- how will he not also , along with him, graciously give us all things? Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies.   Who is he that condemns? Christ Jesus, who died- more that that, who was raised to life- is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us.  Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword?"

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Thankful: a Heart full of Gratitude

791) a new season; Fall (old is dropped off for new to bud and grow)
 792) Two very happy, boys; blessings
 793)Love (that the Lord puts the lonely in families Psalm 68:6)

796) Dancing and letting loose, laughing the whole time.  I'm glad that the ladies at 24 hour fitness didn't call the hospital for admitting me ; )

 797) Smiles and fun (even though the number one rule in our family is no fun - I hope that you caught the sarcasm)

Psalm 136:1-3 "Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever.  Give thanks to the God of gods, for his steadfast love endures forever. Give thanks to the Lord of lords, for his steadfast love endures forever..."

May you find thankfulness this Thanksgiving.  Happy Thanksgiving from my family to yours.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Power of words

love 1st!

James 3:1-7

"Not many of you should become teachers, my fellow believers, because you know that we who teach will be judged more strictly. We all stumble in many ways. Anyone who is never at fault in what they say is perfect, able to keep their whole body in check.

When we put bits into the mouths of horses to make them obey us, we can turn the whole animal.  Or take ships as an example. Although they are so large and are driven by strong winds, they are steered by a very small rudder wherever the pilot wants to go. Likewise, the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark.  The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole body, sets the whole course of one’s life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell.

All kinds of animals, birds, reptiles and sea creatures are being tamed and have been tamed by mankind, but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison."

Oh holy Spirit please change my heart for out of my heart my mouth speaks.   May I speak words of life and grace to those around me and that are closest to me.  Help me be quick to ask forgiveness with fiery words come out of my mouth.  Amen

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Under attack...Stand Ephesians 6:10-18

Ephesians 6: 10-18,

"Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power.

Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil's schemes.

For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the authorities against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.

Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything to stand.

Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist,
with the breastplate of righteousness in place,

and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace.
In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.  

Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests.  With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints."



The Lord calls us to His power; maybe because even our strongest can't compete with the strength of the Lord; the power that parts the seas, raises the dead, heals the sick....and then He asks us to Stand!! (emphasis is mine).  This means a lot to me.  I seem to find refuge and apparent safety in laying down in a prone position of surrender in my bed.  That's not the calling here in Ephesians 6.  If I am Standing, I can see the devil's schemes more clearly; maybe even as they advance.  Now clearly I can't do it on my own, only in Lord's mighty Power.  You think it would be easy to get up on to my two feet and bring myself up but even in the first verse God acknowledges His mighty work is needed to just do this act of Standing.

So now to put on the full armor of God.  So that again I can stand and then stand again and once more stand firm ; and I go back to God's mighty power because I can't do this on my own power.  

First the belt of truth; I just envision my pants hitting the floor without this belt of God's truth surrounding me.  With my pants around my ankle it is so hard to stand and stand firm.  I need to be in the truth, memorizing the truth, and receive solid Bible teaching.  Next the breastplate of righteousness   Sounds heavy to me yet the the Lord promises His yoke is easy and His burden is light (Matthew 11:30). I envision a guard over my heart from lies attacks and sins.  

Feet with the readiness of the Gospel;  a quote from Greg Laurie sums it up, "it’s the idea of being ready and willing to move at a moment’s notice, for those opportunities to share the gospel often come when we least expect them."  And to be ready we must know the gospel study it, breathe it.  


Next my shield of faith needs to be held up, oh I struggle with this too.  Just today I learned that in our culture many times we see faith as a noun, but originally it is a verb to have faith (believe that God is who he says he is and will do what he promised (an active call)).  And as I hold it up with the help of the Lords mighty strength sometimes with the help of my brothers and sister's in Christ; then every fiery dart will be extinguished (like the ones "when are you due?"  Someone implied that I was pregnant last week, ouch it hurt to hear that.  I replied "a little over 3 years ago."  Satan was trying to shoot me with the dart attacking my self image).  What a promise I want to hold up my shield!!

Finally the helmet of salvation and the the sword of the Spirit all from the word of God.  So then again I need the word living and active word of God....And then we Stand and PRAY....  Let's Stand and Pray together...

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Oh such a good reminder...



I need this reminder sometimes...because this is a thought I struggle with...

Monday, November 5, 2012

Come away with me...

Song of Songs 1:4 a, "Take me away with you- let us hurry!"


This was the invite I received from my sweet Savior and I got to sneak away with some time with Him in the presence of fellow sisters in Christ.  Oh the sweet opportunity to be away from the details of daily life and just settle into Christ's presence.

 The Lord provided in the financial means to go in a gift; and what a gift I was offered.  Partly in my pride I considered not going but how could I decline such an invitation.  So I packed up my trunk with another sister and went; boy did I receive rest, peace, affirmation, love, and encouragement.

One of the quotes from the weekend was “…a loving soul wants fresh food every day from the table of Christ.  And you who have once had the kisses of His mouth, though you remember the past kisses with delight, yet want daily fresh tokens of His love.” written by Charles Spurgeon.  It was almost like Christ came and gave me a kiss while I was just 15 minutes away from my home.  I got to taste and see that the Lord is good once again (Psalm 34:8).  


So quickly I get distracted from this truth "that the Lord is good" and get hung up in the life; to do's and now's.  This weekend  confirmed what I recently read in Ecclesiastes 11:10, "So then, banish anxiety from  your heart and cast off the troubles of you body."  

My prayer: Oh Lord please help me to cast of all anxiety and troubles; taking time to soak in the blessings and kisses from you.  May you not be another to do rather; I need you like air.  I will sufficate from the worries of this world without you.  Communion with you guides me in my day.  Clear my hands of clutter that they may be open for your work, Lord and service.  Pry my hands from my load.


Thursday, November 1, 2012

The day after...where do I find gratitude?

The day after I blog about gratitude I have had much trouble finding it today.  I know it is something that I have to look for in the mist of the dark shadows of life.  I resonate a lot with Paul who says, "I do not  understand what I do.  For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do." (Romans 7:15)  I share a common problem I want to but I don't...but I will chose to find thanksgiving in this day.

742) Grace indescribable, overwhelming Grace
743) Life- breath
744) Enough for just today
745) The serotonin production after a good work out
746) Belly laughs of two boys- candy filled boys