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Showing posts from 2011

Finding Me

Pressure.

The Tic-Tac was stuck. It was the last one. Somehow it had to come out. After all, it wasn't always stuck.

And that "somehow" was to squeeze the container to set it free.


Hmmm . . . the very thing we don't want or greatly dislike and makes us feel like the world is squeezing in on us might be the very thing to set us free.

From what?

Oh, so many things.

Fear of man.

Doubt.

Worry.

Misplaced trust.


Careful! I've put a huge stone on the road to Mount Zion,
a stone you can't get around.
But the stone is me!

If you're looking for me,
you'll find me on the way, not in the way. 
Romans 9:33 MSG

If you haven't read Carol Kent's book, Between a Rock and a Grace Place, it's amazingly convicting!

Puppy Lessons

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I thought the puppy was a present, just for Brooke. "Oh, no," He says (probably with a chuckle). "I'll use him to speak life lessons to you; if you'll slow down and listen and keep your eyes open to see and ears open to hear." A prayer I pray daily for me and for my family . . . that we would have eyes to see, ears to hear and a heart to seek Him. I just didn't think these lessons would come in the form of a puppy.

When I told my oldest, who was home from college for the summer, that his younger sister was getting a puppy for her birthday, he was surprised. His response of "I thought you didn't like dogs at all, Mom," spoke volumes. As if to say, I can't believe YOU would do this FOR her. "This is different; it's not about me and what I do or do not want," is all I can reply. "Your sister really wants a puppy and is old enough to take care of him. Plus, I've grown to love him."

Lessonnumberone.

Love is getting…

Staying by Your Side

I was reading through SOLO devotional today; the title was "Staying with God" and the verse was Psalm 27. At the end, two questions were posed:

1. When are you tempted to quit on God?
2. What keeps you from running from Him?

Start with number one. Simple answer really. When am I tempted to quit on God? Quit hoping in His unfailing love and character. Quit trusting in His unending promises. Sounds silly, but how often I find my self quitting. And here's the simple answer. It is when I am looking at myself. At me and what I have to bring to this equation. It seems like not nearly enough. I have nothing.

Question number two. What keeps me from running from Him? Why do I not leave? Why do I cling to Him? When I look at Him, I see:

His grace
His love
His mercy

His beauty
His glory

Your patience
Your kindness
Your goodness
Your undying love
burns an eternal flame

And it pulls me
It draws me
back to You

So I'm staying,
by your side
There no need to run and hide

I'm staying,
by Your side
My Go…

Relentless Love

So . . .
Who else loves you
like this
With a jealous love,
a protective love
A love that wants the best for you
A love that knows the best for you
Because it's the same love
that created you
And knows what and whom
you were created for
And wants nothing to compete
with your love and affections

1 Kings 8:23 (MSG) says "O God, God of Israel, there is no God like you in the skies above or on the earth below who unswervingly keeps covenant with his servants and relentlessly loves them as they sincerely live in obedience to your way."

He (Solomon) goes on to say:

You kept your word

You did what You promised

The proof is before us today.

The thought of jealous love that our pastor asked about this morning had been stirring in my heart for a few weeks since I read that verse in 1 Kings. One of his names is the Jealous God. He says in Exodus 34:14 "Do not worship any other god, for the LORD, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God." What thoughts does
jealous love produce in you, our pa…

Holding Fast

I just read this quote: "When Jesus whispers you better listen . . . even when the whisper is faint. Trust it."

The man of God.

Nothing left to eat.

A dry brook.

Then comes the whisper of God. "Get up and go to Zarephath in Sidon and live there. I have instructed a woman who lives there, a widow, to feed you." (1 Kings 17:7-9)

So he goes.
No questions asked.
He arrives in Sidon
and circumstances APPEAR to NOT be in his favor.
The widow has enough left to make one last meal.

This is what amazes me . . . what my mind and heart won't let go of:

He held fast to the word.

The word, that may have seemed like a whisper to him.

But the word sustained him.

How?

He didn't get there and say,
are you sure God?

He didn't walk away from the widow, saying to himself,
"Guess I heard that one wrong."

He arrived,
and asked the widow to make something for him
before making her "last meal"
refusing to accept what appeared to be the end.

"For the jar of flour was not used…

After your Heart

As iron sharpens iron, so one friend sharpens (makes sharp, alert, keen) another. Proverbs 27:17

Yesterday I found myself so very grateful for the way God uses people in our lives as a vessel to point to Him. I had had a conversation my girlfriend in CA about our college kids. Her oldest and my oldest are going through some life lessons and it is SO hard not to jump in and be GOD in the situation - not that we could anyway. But the point that came up was that God has to get their hearts in this and/or the fact that He's after something in their heart. The next day our pastor's wife spoke on the very same issue - God is after your heart and we need to examine the idols and other loves in our hearts.

"...our focus on certain things eclipses our worship of God. John Calvin said that our hearts are idol factories." (SOLO devotional) An eclipse is a reduction or loss of splendor, status, reputation or obscuring the light. It comes from the Greek to leave out, forsake, fail…

Wanting to Know You More

Disappointment set in the other day. Although I didn't want to admit it, because maybe, just maybe, I felt disappointed with how God chose to act in a situation.

I had gone to the eye doctor for my annual contact exam and my eyes were the same as last year - no new contact prescription for me. This should be good news, right? My eyes are not getting worse. Instead, it became a disappointment to me and I couldn't walk away from this until I dealt with it and left it at His feet.

You see, for the past two years, my eyes got better: I was able to lower the prescription by half a power measurement in each eye. This is huge for someone like me, who eyes are so bad they usually don't carry my prescription in stock! (It's a big negative number, which means nearsightedness and lots of correction is needed to give me 20/20 distance vision.) I was content to receive the gradual healing and had thought, "COOL! God, if this is how you want to heal my eyes, half a power each ye…

One More Day

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Sitting on the floor, pieces of a shattered vase scattered all around. Once it sat upon the shelf with the others - so beautiful and so full of life. Others couldn't help but smile and feel the joy as they encountered this vase. But now all that seems to remain are pieces - pieces that can never be put back together again, at least not in this world, not in this situation. Yet, there was hope . . . reaching down to pick up a piece and turning it over in her hand. She sees something so priceless that she never would have seen it had it not crashed to floor . . . just like the day her world came crashing down around her. The day Jesus came to take her baby girl home.

"One more day, one more time, one more sunset, maybe I'll be satisfied. But then again I know just what it'd do ... leave me wishing still for one more day with you."
Words from a country song about a lost love I'm sure. But they seemed to fit my life saying goodbye to my oldest as he went off to co…

Breath Me In

Breathe me in, so you can breathe me out.

As I was running on the treadmill this morning, worshipping (in my head and mouthing the words because I didn't have the breath to sing ;-) ... staring at the little heart icon on the monitor of the machine in front of me . . . it was getting bigger and then smaller, bigger and smaller . . . and that's when I heard "Breathe me in so you can breath me out."

In my devotional "Solo" today, there was the same theme . . .


You can't give out what you don't have inside you.

TRUE TRUE so verrrrry TRUE!

Take time to be refreshed and rejuvenated. This only comes from spending time in My presence, for I am your source of life, energy and vitality. Come and be renewed and restored, says the Lord.

The GOOD one . . .

One of those days, when you feel like you're not measuring up. To what I'm not quite sure - but you just feel like you're not making much difference in the world especially in your world. Your mind spirals into this "Am I doing a good job at anything?"


And He says, "But does that really matter?" "I love you . . . regardless."


My focus gets stuck on being the GOOD Mom or lack thereof, being the GOOD Wife or lack thereof, being the GOOD Military Officer's Wife or lack thereof . . .


Yet that is not what He requires of me. Act justly, Love mercy, and walk humbly with my God. This is what He would ask of me.

Am I doing a good job of LOVING the Lord my God with ALL my HEART, my MIND, my STRENGTH?


Am I seeking HIM in EVERY moment?

Am I asking HIM His PURPOSE for this situation?

Am I seeing HIM as HE IS, not who I think He SHOULD be?


And then there is the wrong perspective about myself that I have. Think about the "One Jesus Loved." As Beth M…

Stuck!

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I keep finding myselfstuck.



Stuck in frustration.


Stuck in situations that I don't want to be in.


Stuck in the same rut of emotions that are not uplifting.



Stuck at the mall instead of at the beach.


Stuck at the store instead of out exploring.


Stuck with sick family members instead of healthy and whole.



So what is the big deal?

My heart is not clean . . . God has been speaking of holiness upon the heart." Acts of goodness and generosity align you with others and bring out best . . . acts of bitterness, pettiness and anger put you at cross purposes with God and diminishes you and others." (Sylvia Gunter) I was stuck in the petty, the anger, and the bitter places. How am I going to get unstuck from these situations?

Sick family members. There is an enemy, but we have authority. Jesus told the disciples in Matthew 10 that they had authority to heal every kind of disease, over unclean spirits - to cast them out . . . freely you have received = freely give. Have I not been freely giv…