Saturday, June 11, 2011


Isaiah 30:15
This is what the Sovereign LORD, the Holy One of Israel, says:

“In repentance and rest is your salvation,
in quietness and trust is your strength,
but you would have none of it.

Oh, Lord, let us not be like the obstinate nation...let us repent and rest in you.  Let us get our strength in queitness and trust....for the JOY of you Lord is our strength.  Lord as I type these words I am trying to "do" many things...get my email cleaned out, edit some blog posts, etc...Lord let me just "be"-quiet. Let me just rest in you!  Take the pressure off me to get my to-do list done.  Show me if there is any "work" that I need to lay down.  Remind me that it is not my performance that will get me through this life-it is the blood of Jesus!  I trust in and rely upon you-I will rest, for I know you are working in me to will and to do what pleases you.  Thank you that I can rest even while going about everyday tasks.  I don't have to worry about how to get it all done....I trust in your guidance! In Jesus name, AMEN

Friday, June 10, 2011

Are you tired???

Lord your Word tells us to come to You when we are weary and burdened, and You will give us rest. Lord, let us take your yoke upon us and learn from you, for you are gentle and humble in heart, and we will find rest for our souls. for your yoke is easy and your burden is light (Matthew 11:28-30)

God we know that you are not unjust; You will not forget our work and the love we have shown You as we have helped your people and continue to help them. Let each of us show this same diligence to the very end, in order to make our hope sure. Do not let us become lazy, but to imitate those who through faith and patience inherit what has been promised. (Hebrews 6:10-12)

Thank you that we will not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. (Gal 6:9) Thank you that we will not be lacking in zeal, but You will keep our spiritual fervor, as we are serving you Lord. (Romans 12:11) We know that all hard work brings a profit, (Prov 14:23)

And we pray this in order that we may live a life worthy of the Lord and may please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that we may have great endurance and patience, and joyfully giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified us to share in the inheritance of the saints in the kingdom of light. To this end we labor, struggling with all YOUR energy, which so powerfully works in us.   (Col 1:10-11, 29)

Thank you Lord that You gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in You LORD will renew their strength. We will soar on wings like eagles; we will run and not grow weary, we will walk and not be faint. (Isaiah 40:29-31)

We rest in you-Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith.  In Jesus name, AMEN!

Thursday, June 9, 2011


I was up very early Sunday morning with a sick little one, so we snuggled on the couch and watched Enchanted.  In case you don't know me, I am NOT a movie kind of girl!  So for me to watch a movie more than once is rare (of course my kids watch the same videos over and over, but I am usually doing something else after the first viewing).  The first time I watched Enchanted was on a trip to Dallas with students a few years ago...I had nothing to do but watch the video on the bus ride, although I was not fully watching it and didn't get to see the ending.  I was surprised at how God used it to teach me the first time I saw the movie (read the post here)
Seeing the ending of the movie made me sad Sunday. This time when I finished the movie I had some of the same negative thoughts I usually do about movies (waste of time, etc...).  I'm not really sure what emotions it brought up...but not good.  In fact, kind of put a damper on my day until I realized I was thinking so negatively and took my thoughts captive.  This writing is an attempt to sort out the negative feelings and bring them into the light of Jesus.  (It's not a new movie, but if you've not seen it and don't want to ruin it, watch it before you read on. Even if you've not seen the movie, I hope that you will still benefit from this writing).

Here's what I think I got out of it: We are like Giselle-made for our Prince (Jesus) but when we spend too much time in the world, we give up on our first love.  After being in NYC, Giselle began taking on their customs and was not as enchanted with her prince.  She spent too much time with another man and fell in love with him.  Have we done that-spent too much time with the world and desire what it has to offer more than we want what Jesus has to offer? 
Even though the movie seemed to end with a 'happily ever after' since the prince found a new bride and Giselle chose a new left me sad! I don't want to loose my first love!  I was comforted when this verse came to mind:

To him who is able to keep you from falling and to present you before his glorious presence without fault and with great joy— to the only God our Savior be glory, majesty, power and authority, through Jesus Christ our Lord, before all ages, now and forevermore! Amen. Jude 24-25

He will keep me from loosing my first love! I want to fall more deeply in love with Jesus every day and let the fascination with the world grow dim.  I don't want to settle for less than my Hero-my Jesus.  I want to be ready when He comes for me and this promise remind me that he will present me with great joy!

Let us rejoice and be glad and give him glory! For the wedding of the Lamb has come, and his bride has made herself ready.  Revelation 19:17

Verse 18 goes on to say that the bride is wearing fine linen which is righteousness.  It has been given us to wear by the sacrifice of Christ.  I am working on a blog about clothing now...will post more later-but for now just note that Christ's sacrifice makes us ready!

The bride belongs to the bridegroom. The friend who attends the bridegroom waits and listens for him, and is full of joy when he hears the bridegroom’s voice. That joy is mine, and it is now complete. He must become greater; I must become less. John 3:29-30

We, the bride of Christ-belong to Him! We are his and cannot be snatched from his hand.  We can choose not to focus on Jesus, but He still loves us.  Jesus is still captivated by his bride-just as the prince was in the movie.  He was still singing to Giselle even when she lost interest. 

You have stolen my heart, my sister, my bride; you have stolen my heart with one glance of your eyes, with one jewel of your necklace. Song of Solomon 4:9

The bride of Christ 'stole His heart' before we were even born-He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world!!! He will never give up on us even if we don't remember His promises.  Today my Z whispered in my ear "you are a princess, mommy-that will make your day better"!  What a sweet reminder!!! You too friend are a princess (or prince) as well-for your Father is the king of kings and you are the bride of the Prince of Peace.  Think about that!! 

The end of Beth Moore's teaching on Life Today confirmed what God was speaking into my heart this week.  There is a happily every after...My God will make all things new!!
“Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world.  Matthew 25:34

This happily ever after is brings me much more joy and peace than thinking on a movie (now do you see why I don't do movies ;) I think too much, lol). 
The ransomed of the LORD will return. They will enter Zion with singing; everlasting joy will crown their heads. Gladness and joy will overtake them, and sorrow and sighing will flee away. Isaiah 51:11

Lord God,  You're the King of the world.  You've stolen my heart, Yes You have! You've wiped away the stains,and broke away the chains, Yes You have!  You are able to keep my eyes on you and present me holy and without fault in your presence.  Thank you Jesus!! In your presence we become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which we shine like stars in the universe (Phil 2:15) Thank you for your mercy and grace and for the ways you speak your truth and love in my life.  I love you Lord!!!

Thanks for reading this super long blog post...and in case you are wondering I feel better now:) Sorting through feelings in the light of the Word always does that for me!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Is it worth it?

I have been wondering if taking the time to blog is worth it.  I mean there are tons of other bloggers out there who may be saying the same thing as me.  When I doubt, the Lord is quick to remind me of His promises.  He has a plan for my life and if He's guiding me to blog it has a purpose. Even if only one person comes to know Jesus more-it's worth it!

One of my primary purposes may be a teeny bit selfish.  Writing gets my thoughts out and they eventually make more sense to me.  When I blog and add tags, it allows me to recall what He has taught me.  Just this week I have used my blog posts to remember the goodness of God and His faithfulness in my life

Today I found another reason for writing and sharing what He is doing in my life.  Because people need to hear the good news!  Not that God needs me to do it, He makes himself known by His creation (Romans 1:20).  But when I follow Him, I will be blessed and I hope and pray that you will be encouraged!

Give praise to the LORD, proclaim his name; make known among the nations what he has done. Psalm 105:1

The realization today was brought about by the circle of moms top 25 faith blogs.  I saw the post on facebook and checked it out since I am trying to interact with other bloggers.  I thought that I would find others blogging just like me-faith in Christian.  I was wrong.  I frequently make the mistake of assuming people are like me in their beliefs. I was proved wrong today when the top faith blog selected was a pagan mom's blog.  I must admit, I am uneducated when it comes to the belief systems of other faiths.  This opened my eyes and reminded me that not everyone knows the good news of the gospel of Jesus Christ!!!

So, I'm going to keep chugging along and stop thinking about the number of readers.  I will leave it in the hands of my Lord and Savior who has a plan for the words He gives me.  His word is alive and active, sharper than a double-edged sword and will accomplish what He desires...bringing joy and peace!!!
As the rain and the snow
   come down from heaven,
and do not return to it
   without watering the earth
and making it bud and flourish,
   so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater,
 so is my word that goes out from my mouth:
   It will not return to me empty,
but will accomplish what I desire
   and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.
 You will go out in joy
   and be led forth in peace;
the mountains and hills
   will burst into song before you,
and all the trees of the field
   will clap their hands.     Isaiah 55:10-12

For the record, my blog didn't come in LAST place! I don't know who you are, but thanks to the 12 people that voted for it, lol!!! I entered it today-which was the last day to vote, so the only purpose was to get the blog out there.  I do have some traffic coming from that site (but, wait...I'm not going to focus on the numbers, right?).  I also had a new subscriber today because a sweet friend shared my blog on her facebook page! I am humbled and thankful for each of you reading this...whoever you are!!!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Forgetting God's Goodness

After the spiritual amnesia post I wrote earlier in the week, I read a Harvest Devotion via email with interest since confirmation (repeating themes) is one way God has been speaking to me. Here is a portion of it:
Have you ever forgotten God's goodness to you? Have you ever had to relearn something? I know I have. And the disciples did too. Matthew's Gospel tells us that on one occasion, the disciples had forgotten to bring bread on their journey, and they were worried about it. The feeding of the 5,000 had happened only days earlier. Then there was another miracle of the feeding of the 4,000. So what happened? They forgot. That is what happened. God is the same yesterday, today, and forever. The same God who was there for you in the past will be with you here in the present. And He will be there for you in the future as well.

Later, after they crossed to the other side of the lake, the disciples discovered they had forgotten to bring any bread. "Watch out!" Jesus warned them. "Beware of the yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees." Matthew 16:5

After the revelation over the weekend that I am prone to spiritual amnesia, this verse jumped out at me-specifically Jesus' words to beware of the yeast.  Yeast puffs up and spreads through a whole batch of dough- a little yeast goes a long way. Was the 'yeast' he was talking about here forgetting the goodness of God?

If the 'yeast' is discontentment or dissatisfaction (as I was dealing with earlier) then it only takes a bit to cause that to overflow out of your life.  If the 'yeast' is fear (that God won't provide), then it only takes a bit to impact your life.

Jesus warned the disciples to beware of the yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees, or religious people of the time.  This means we also need to be aware of the 'yeast' that we can pick up on from others.  When we are surrounded by spiritual amnesia, negativity, religion, or fear it is easy to get brought down with the group if we don't constantly focus on Jesus-the bread of life.

If we trust in and focus on Jesus and renew our minds, we won't forget God's goodness!  We will not be conformed to the pattern of this world (infected by 'yeast'), but will be transformed by the renewing of our minds. Then we will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will (Romans 12:2)!!! We will be joyful always;  pray continually;  give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for us in Christ Jesus (1 Thessalonians 17:16-18). 

And who knows, maybe the Spirit in us will impact those around us instead of the 'yeast' infecting us!  Wait-we do know- You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world. 1 John 4:4 Praise the Lord!! Jesus in us is greater than the 'yeast' and when we look to Jesus we will not forget God's goodness!

Monday, June 6, 2011

Spiritual Amnesia

Sometimes it seems like I'm always looking for something to make me happy.  Looking toward something that is coming up instead of enjoying today.  Wanting something I don't yet have that I think will make me happy instead of enjoying what God has already given me to enjoy.  Thinking that if "x" would just change, or "y" would happen, then I would be happy.  Well...I'm done with it!  I am choosing today to rejoice in the Lord always and again I say rejoice!!! I will celebrate my life just as it is and as Paul said, will learn to live in contentment no matter what my circumstances.  I have spent too many days wishing for tommorows or longing for yesterdays.  I have spent too many days forgetting the goodness of God-suffering from spiritual amnesia. 

In his book Crazy Love, Francis Chan writes about spiritual amnesia in the first chapter.  We are programmed to focus on what we don't have, bombarded multiple times throughout the day with what we need to buy that will make us feel happier or sexier or more at peace.  This dissatisfaction transfers over to our thinking about God.  We forget that we already have everything we need in Him.  Because we don't often think about the reality of who God is, we quickly forget that He is worthy to be worshipped and loved.  We are to fear Him. 

Lord, forgive me for forgetting your goodness-You are good-all the time!  Teach me to trust you and be content with your plan for my life even when it doesn't match mine.  I know your ways are higher than my ways and you have a plan that is far better than any plan I could create in my mind.  Thank you for the Joy that you make available to all who put their trust in You!  Lord fill me with your joy while I'm waiting.  Let my life overflow with the joy of the Lord-be my strength daily!  Let me not suffer from spiritual amnesia-but to constantly remember the sacrifice that Christ paid for me!! How can I keep from singing when I think on the beauty of the cross? Lift my eyes to see your faithfulness when I am discouraged.  Lord your Word reminds us that the thief comes to steal kill and destroy-but You came that we might have and ENJOY life to the full, till it overflows!!! Thank you Jesus!!!! Amen

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Forgotten God

I just finished reading Forgotten God Reversing Our Tragic Neglect of the Holy Spirit.  I borrowed this book from the library since I have been on a quest to know more about the Holy Spirit after reading through Acts awhile ago.  While this book wasn't exactly what I was looking for as far as answering my questions, it was a good book.  Since it was on loan from the library I couldn't mark my favorite sections to remember later....bummer! 

This is the first Francis Chan book I've read after being 'introduced' when a friend shared a you tube video of Francis preaching.  I guess just by my personality I always 'test' an author to make sure that I'm not being deceived before I'm really comfortable reading their work.  I did not come across anything that I did not agree he 'passed the test'.  (Of course, that's not to say that we don't each need to 'test' anything we read or hear to ensure that it lines up with the Word of God-including anything you read here!)

In reading the book I came across a a few themes God is working on in my life now-and has been for awhile.  1. Expectation 2. Motivation 3. Comparing 4. Grace vs Works 5. Relationship

1. Expectation (Trust)
On page 47 Francis writes about a common fear-What if God doesn't come through? One concern that I've often heard (and felt) is, what if I pray for the Holy Spirit and nothing happens?  What if I ask for more of the Spirit's fruit in my life and don't see any apparent "results"?  It's scary to pray boldly for change or freedom from sin, because if nothing happens, then doesn't that mean God failed? Doesn't that mean His Spirit isn't all we've been told He is? I think the fear of God failing us leads us to "cover for God." This means we ask for less, expect less, and are satisfied with less because we are afraid to ask for or expect more. (read Luke 11:13)
Do you believe that God in heaven gives His Spirit to those who ask?  Do you REALLY believe it?  This truth and what it means is so incredible that no one who actually believes it could then fail to ask for the Holy Spirit.  (Acts 2:28 is where we see that we receive the Holy Spirit when we begin to follow Christ)
It really comes down to trust.  Do you trust God that when He says no or "not in this way" to you, you still believe that He is good and doing what is best?
Um...yea, tough questions, huh?  It's easy to answer the questions the way they should be answered, but I had to reassess the easy answer and make sure my life lines up with what I say I believe. 

2. Motivation
Chapter 4 asks: Why do you Want Him? While we may have our own purposes for desiring the Spirit's presence and power in our lives, so does God! Yep...this theme keeps showing up in almost every area of my life...what's my motivation?  Do I want to bring glory to myself or to my God? 

3. Comparing
One of the things I enjoyed reading in the book was the profiles at the end of each chapter of a person (or couple) that Francis describes as being Spirit filled. Their stories were amazing and inspiring to see the fruit produced by Christ living in them! Since you know I have some comparison issues, at first these were tough for me because I tried to compare where I am now in my life with these people-and wanting my life to look like theirs.  Of course the Holy Spirit reminded me that He has a plan for my life that won't look like anyone else's but will be just as significant in it's own way. I was reminded that Jesus is the author and perfecter of my faith and it is not my responsibility to 'produce fruit'. My responsibility is to trust in and rely on the power of the God working in me to will and to act according to his good purpose.
On Page 130, Francis asks the reader to think of people in their life who walk with the Spirit daily so much that it's evident in the graciousness and peace they exude.  But Francis is quick to point out that in doing so it would be easy to compare ourselves with others in this area and that is NOT our job.  Instead he encourages the reader to examine their own life. 

4. Grace vs Works
Pages 131-133 is a discussion of who's job is it.  Is it God's work or my work? Francis uses Galatians 3:3
and Philippians 2:12-13 in the discussion.  Pages146-149 discuss the fruit of the Spirit and how as believers we often try to produce it on our lives. Francis encourages us with this reminder-  Instead of mustering up more willpower, let's focus our energies and time on asking for help from the One who has the power to change us.  Let's take the time to ask God to put the fruit of His Spirit into our lives.  And lets spend time with the One we want to be more like. 

5. Relationship
Throughout the whole book were reminders that it's all about a relationship with God...not religion or rules and regulations.  The last sentence of the paragraph above reminds us to spend time in communion with our God-have a relationship! Another quote stuck out to me: Our lack of intimacy often is due to our refusal to unplug and shut off communication from all others so we can be alone with Him.  ( that a BIG ouch to anyone else?  I was hit hard with this because I am usually so quick to 'comminicate' with the world through facebook-and was convicted that I sometimes do that more than run to Him throughout the day!) One last thing on relationship that came at the end of the book: You would think that learning more ABOUT  God would be a good thing....but when we gain knowledge ABOUT God without responding TO Him or assimilating His truth into our lives, then it is not a good thing.  I needed this reminder as I am always seeking to know more-just need to make sure that I spend time with the One I am seeking to know more about!

My favorite quote from the book is on page 142:
I don't want my life to be explainable without the Holy Spirit.  I want people to look at my life and know that I couldn't be doing this by my own power.  I want to live in such a way that I am desperate for Him to come through.  That if He doesn't come through, I am screwed.  ( I probably shouldn't write that word here, but it's how I truly feel about this.) I like this paragraph so much because it is my desire as well...and I literally laughed out loud at Francis' honesty and choice of words.

So, if you are a reader I would reccomend this book-or any other by Franics Chan, since I like his wrting style...just like he was chatting with his reader.  If you have read the book would love you to post here anything you got from it!  (Also...don't know legal ramifications about posting quotes from a book on a blog-for a complimentary review.  But, note that all italicized words are dorect quotes from the book and I put page numbers with most of them.)
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