Monday, October 31, 2016

"Living Recklessly In His Love" - 10/31/16 - Mark 11, John 12



"In the same way, anyone who holds on to life just as it is, destroys that life. But if you let it go, reckless in your love, you’ll have it forever, real and eternal."(John 12:25)


Forgiveness God's way - when thought about from a human perspective doesn't make sense.  We think that revenge, defensiveness, rightful anger, cutting a person off, are the way to retaliate to someone who has hurt us.

I have finally recognized my unChrislike reaction towards persons who offend me is actually because buttons were/are being pressed which most often has nothing to do with the moment. ABBA has opened my eyes in seeing this type of reaction to the "pushing of these buttons" is because I haven't completely forgiven something which has already occurred.  

Amazing how much power "something" can be given if we choose to hold onto it. 

In the past few years, through different occurrences, God continually teaches me.  He is having me face issues I had not yet forgiven.  He threw back the rug I had been sweeping the pain, anger, bitterness under.  Thinking they were hidden by my smile, my clinging to the Word - but they weren't. 

God has a way of allowing us to walk around or over the bump in the rug - for awhile.  Then He has us deal with it - His time, His way. 

Most times His ways don't make much sense - they are usually opposite of everything the world claims is the "right way" or the best way to protect ourselves.  His ways seem to leave us even more vulnerable, more exposed. 

But - when you follow His ways - there is such a true freedom in Him. 

He brings gifts into our lives, much the same way that fruit appears in an orchard—things like affection for others, exuberance about life, serenity.
We develop a willingness to stick with things, a sense of compassion in the heart, and a conviction that a basic holiness permeates things and people.
We find ourselves involved in loyal commitments, not needing to force our way in life, able to marshal and direct our energies wisely.

 Legalism is helpless in bringing this about; it only gets in the way.

Among those who belong to Christ,
everything connected with getting our own way and mindlessly responding to what everyone else calls necessities

is killed off for good—crucified."(Galatians 5:22-23)

I recognized the way I was trying to hold onto "my" ways were killing my life for what it could be when living His way. I was literally choking the life out of life - much like holding water in the palm of my hand.  It still seeps away until nothing is left.  Holding onto "not forgiving" was hardening my heart, creating bitterness, anger, self-righteousness and self pride.

Creating a wall between Him and myself.

My prayer for years has been for Him to remove all evil from my heart - and He has/is. 
How exciting through Him I am able to forgive. 

Yes, there are times when my instant gut reaction is thinking "my way" works.  And when I stop and choose to walk as He instructs,  it still blows my mind seeing the results of His way.

"But if you let it go, reckless in your love,"
To truly live life.  To be intimate with Him. 

It is amazing how living His way really is true love - a love that keeps growing and consuming my heart.  Knowing with everything I am it is His True and Holy Love which   "I’ll have it forever, real and eternal"

I decided to let go - living reckless in His Love.
 
 
 
 
 
 

Sunday, October 30, 2016

"Eagerly Await" - 10/30/16 - Luke 18:15-19:48



"All this because you didn't recognize and welcome God's personal visit."(19:44)


My knees grow weak  whenever I think about how closely I came to missing ABBA.  How deeply embedded in the world I once was.  How many days, years, went by and the thought of Him never even entered my mind.   How much of my past was spent in not recognizing Him, let alone welcoming His personal visits in His effort to rescue me.  My heart speeds up with a jolt of fear knowing how close I came to missing out on Him all together.  The many times I entered into physical situations and living through them shouldn't have happened.  The many "could have happened", "should have happened", endings He prevented. 


His personal visits.  Hindsight really is 20/20.


There has never been such a constant in my life as His. 
 
Even the evil one had his way of enticing me in, but would depart when he felt I was within his grasp. Leaving behind fear, loneliness, despair, emptiness.


It took ABBA working through the miracle of growing Adam within my womb to finally recognize Him.  How fitting when I look back, His using a new born babe to open not only my eyes, but heart as well, in recognizing Him.  A new born babe.  Sound familiar?
 
It has taken some serious work on ABBA's part and letting go on mine, to be at the point where I am continually "welcoming His personal visits".  No longer do I cower in shame, dread the cleansings, am untrusting of the good times.  No longer do I find myself going through much time at all when I am not thinking of Him.  He has a way of drawing worship from me through most all of my life.  He has a way of drawing me into Him even closer most breaths I take. 


He is Whom I eagerly await. 


My heart, it is bursting with Love from and for Him. 
Eagerly awaiting, one day, our eternal "face to face" visit. 
 
 

Saturday, October 29, 2016

"Immeasurable" - 10/29/16 - Matthew 20-21




"That is what The Son of Man has done: He came to serve, not be served - and then to give away His life in exchange for the many who are held hostage."(20:28)

 No greater love.

 Can you imagine to love so deeply you are willing to give your life up to save another?  To love so deeply you would sacrifice yourself from being with ABBA in order that they may be His.

 I once heard an account of a mother in a concentration camp who was forced to choose between her two children, a boy and his younger sister, which one would live.  She selected her little girl to go into the gas chambers, feeling her son had a better chance to survive.  Feeling her little girl would be subjected to far worse treatment than he.  She felt her decision was the lesser of two evils.

Deep within my heart I know I could never make the choice between Adam or Nichalas.  We all three most likely, would have been killed.  Thankfully, I have never been placed in that spot, but many parents have been throughout the ages of time.  I do know, without hesitation or doubt, if the choice was myself or them to die, it would be me.  There is a love for my Curt, our sons,  Amber,  Ashley, Charlie, Ella and so many others, which is so strong.  I would willingly lay down my life if it meant saving theirs.  Including their souls. 

 But I do know, there would be hesitation if the choice was myself or someone I don't know, who treats me in contempt, who lives only for evil..  How this choice breaks my ABBA's heart.  Slowly, but surely -  He is transforming my heart to love as He loves.  To love "all" deeply.

To see the lost as well, lost.  There is nothing that can be done to me - even physical death - to tear me from my ABBA's arms.  Nothing. 

Can you even imagine being able to love this way.  To be so full of Him, we are able to love as He loves?  Can you imagine what this world would be like?  To love our "neighbor" more than ourselves?

Our ABBA - He did this for each one of us.
Our Savior - He did this for each one of us. 
Even those who have made the choice not to love Him in return.
This is the example of Love I continually strive to emulate.
 

 

Friday, October 28, 2016

"All You've Got" - 10/28/16 - Matthew 19, Mark 10






“If you want to give it all you’ve got,” Jesus replied, “go sell your possessions; give everything to the poor. All your wealth will then be in heaven. Then come follow Me.”   

That was the last thing the young man expected to hear. And so, crestfallen, he walked away. He was holding on tight to a lot of things, and he couldn’t bear to let go. 

As He watched him go, Jesus told His disciples, “Do you have any idea how difficult it is for the rich to enter God’s kingdom? Let Me tell you, it’s easier to gallop a camel through a needle’s eye than for the rich to enter God’s kingdom.” 

The disciples were staggered. “Then who has any chance at all?”
Jesus looked hard at them and said, “No chance at all if you think you can pull it off yourself.

Every chance in the world, if you trust God to do it.” (Matthew 19:21-26)




As I have gotten older, I strive to have our home and business in order.  Particularly when we are going to be away for awhile; for I do not want to leave a mess for our family.  I desire for their time to be spent comforting and being with each other - not wading through a bunch of disorganized "stuff". 

But more often than not, everything isn't in order and I sometimes think about the "unfinished" which would be left behind if I were suddenly called "home".  I am guilty of sometimes mismanaging my time, and am striving to do better.  I am sometimes guilty of hanging onto "stuff" for sentimental reasons, for reasons of self worth, for all the wrong reasons.  Thankfully, instead of beating myself up, ABBA is showing me improvement and encourages me to continue on the "better stewardship track" of my journey.  There are even moments I am able to laugh about things I have held onto and let them go. 

More importantly though, He has me focused on "whom" I would be leaving behind.

I am looking forward to going "Home" but honestly, just not right now.  I strive to live as though I am dying.  But wonder, is it sin to want to still be here?  To be with those I love?  Does that mean I am loving them more than Him?  Not things, but persons I am clinging to?  He knows when my days are finished, He knows my weakness, He knows my heart so much better than I do, He knows I love Him more than those I "hold on to tightly".  What kind of steward am I in my time, our home, my heart.  Have I emptied myself of "self" to be totally filled with Him?  How I love His Word, but am I living it? 

He tells me the time will come when He calls me Home.  Until then, my stewardship will continue.  To not overly focus on how I am doing with letting go, but whom I am bringing along, making Disciples.  For He has blessed me in knowing, without a doubt, those I am saddened to leave, will one day also be called Home.  Home together, "in" eternity with Him.  As long as I haven't allowed another to become my god, it's okay to be torn about leaving - for they are my "Taste of Heaven" here on this earth. 
 He is impressing upon me, "Don't take your "Taste of Heaven" for granted".  "Don't limit your "Taste of Heaven" to a selected few". 

What freedom comes "as you live, as you go, making Disciples for Him - ever growing your "family".  It isn't about the "stuff".  It is knowing one day, we will celebrate together - HOME.  

Thursday, October 27, 2016

"His Kingdom Come" - Luke 17:11-18:14



"Because God's Kingdom is already among you."(17:21)
 
Looking out the dining room window the other day, seeing the bright yellow leaves scattered about on the lawn, sparkling in the sunshine, I instantly thought, "ABBA has spilt gold this day". 
 
My heart smiled. 
 
I am torn in the season of fall.  I am in love with the box of colors He splashes about wherever my eyes fall, yet I am not in love knowing another year is coming to an end.  A symbol of time passing by too fast, too soon.  I am in love with the crispness of the air, yet I am not in love knowing days ahead will be mostly spent inside due to the elements.  I am in love with the scene of harvest being played out upon the fields.  Combines leaving the bean fields swept like a newly vacuumed carpet.  Pieces of corn laying between the cut down stalks and turned over to the mouths of cattle, looking warm and fluffy as their new winter coats are coming in.  Preparing them for the cold winds which will soon be blowing across the naked terrain.  His nature stark against the winter sky, asleep as it awaits the coming spring.
 
Last night I glanced at the clock as the sun slipped below the horizon and was amazed it was only 5:30pm.  And in the closing darkness He gave us a show of vibrant reds, oranges, yellows, cream, and purples, as He put this part of the world to sleep.   
 
Throughout yesterday I thought about it being the last day of being 56.  It caused me to think back over the time behind, amazed at the amount of years, and see the many moments "His gold has spilt upon my days".
So many moments throughout the years of when He has filled me with "His Kingdom Come".

"His Kingdom Come", those who are my siblings.  My family.

The voices, laughter, smiles - the all of my family has left their echo in each nook and cranny of my  heart.

How much I love when He uses me to interact with His children.  How much I love to be His child through the Gift of our Savior.  To be celebrating Him in the safety and comfort of each other.

I look back and see how often He showers me with His love through each of His Beloved.  Even times when I haven't makeup on, my clothes are super comfy lounge about or dirty from a day of work, my hair on top of my head, probably containing bits of leaves still there from the quick shake out before showering. I love feeling completely comfortable and accepted with each of His no matter my outward, or even inward, condition.  There are times standing and watching the goings on, my heart seems as though it will burst from the amount of love we have for one another.  Love that is radiating throughout the living of life together. 

How He so blesses my all.
Not only in face to face time, but through the gift of the internet, phones, Skype, and old fashioned "snail mail". My life is so richly blessed, my cup runneth over. 
 
Finally, I have discovered. In living life to the fullest - it isn't about how we spend our time - it is Whom we are spending it with and for.
 
My heart smiles in knowing how He has blessed me with the birthday present which continually keeps on giving.
Being part of  "ABBA's Kingdom Come". 
Those He calls "My Beloved".
 
 
 
 
 

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

"Do You?" - 10/26/16 - John 11




This.   is why.


This.  is the most important reason why our Savior left His Father's side and became of the flesh.


This.   is why He was.  He is. He always will be.


This.  is the most important question He asks of you:


"I am, right now, Resurrection and Life.
The one who believes in Me, even though he or she dies, will live.  
And everyone who lives believing in Me does not ultimately die at all.

 Do you believe this?"(25-26) 


I pray for all to answer to Him:


 "Yes, Master.
All along I have believed that You are The Messiah,
The Son of God who comes into the world."(27)
 

 

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

"His Time - His Way" - 10/25/16 - Luke 16:1-17:10



"Ah, I've got a plan. Here's what I'll do . . ."(16:4)
 
It has come to the point where I can laugh when "my" plan doesn't pan out, because I know He is the one in control.  Not me. 
Yet, there are still times I try to take the bull by the horn and run the show.  To live life on my plan or my schedule.

And each and every time I find - it just doesn't happen.
 
ABBA has shown me, (so many times it is quite embarrassing) He is in control.
Everything is His way - in His time. 
There aren't any exceptions. 
None.

It used to be I had our work schedule down to minutes.  And something would always happen to throw things off, resulting in my being anxious about finishing things up when I deemed they should be done.  I wasn't taking time to visit with our clients, it was all about getting on and off the property to keep "my" schedule.


Then Curt came to work with me. 
 
Curt is the PR of our company.  Although he is a very hard worker, one of the greatest blessings he gives is in having a cup of coffee in one hand while standing and visiting with some of our clients.  I am thankful this is his gift, for it isn't mine.  I don't like coffee. 

ABBA has opened my eyes to see in actual reality it is my pride that wants me to keep on "my" schedule..  And because of my "pride",  I wasn't liking that "my" schedule was being rearranged.


ABBA continually puts persons in my path for Him to use me and when I am not responding to His lead, He puts all sorts of obstacles in the way of "my" schedule.    From flat tires to equipment problems, He at times is actually hitting me over the head so I will see -  I am missing out on The Divine Appointments He has lined up for me.

He uses Curt and Adam to help me see,  "the work will get done when it gets done".  Which is very hard for my performance driven self to adhere to.  (Thankfully, ABBA is continually transforming me.)
 
ABBA has opened my eyes to see my life here isn't about the business He has given us, it is about using "His" business for His purpose - to reach out to people.  "His" business is putting us at a persons home on a regular basis, some of them for over 19 years.  Resulting in the blessings of some becoming much more than a client, but a friend.  Someone whom we now share life with.

So, I am again reminded, while thinking about all the work He has lined up for us to do and we are heading into the 11th month of the year, this is about His plans.  Not mine.  One way He uses me is to pray for these persons while working on their property.  Since doing this, He has given me the blessings of seeing His work in action as they have come to or become closer to Christ.  It is such an honor to pray for these persons. 
He has given me this peace regarding not only the business, but in all areas of my life.
His time.  His way.
Anxiety gone.  Faith and Trust growing.
Hearing Him say, ""Come along my child.  Ah, I've got a plan. Here's what I'll do . . ."
 
 
 
 

Monday, October 24, 2016

"His Misfits" - 10/24/16 - Luke 14-15




"Invite some people who never get invited out, the misfits from the wrong side of the tracks.  You'll be - and experience - a blessing. They won't be able to return the favor, but the favor will be returned - oh, how it will be returned! - at the resurrection of God's people." (14:13-14)

Do you remember the old cartoon, "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer and the Island of Misfit Toys"?
 
I can remember watching it and thinking how easily I could have lived on that island. Until I became a part of ABBA's family, I lived in this world feeling like a misfit.   
There are moments I haven't a clue as to why ABBA is using me to reach out to certain  persons.  I just know I am heeding His commands and trying to follow in His steps.  He often reminds me that I know what it feels like to be a "misfit" and there wasn't just one who took the time to follow ABBA's lead, giving me welcome throughout my life.  It has and continues to be  many.  Her name is Teresa.  Her name is Missy.  His name is Dick.  His name is Danny.  Their names are "His Servants".  He uses each one of  us in His family to welcome in the "misfits".  Each and every one of us are commanded to be a part of His welcoming committee. 

And still there are those times in which the feeling like a "misfit" will come over me and I allow those feelings to hinder "me" working for Him.  He again will open my eyes and I look about to focus instead  upon the innumerable blessings of other "misfits" He has placed into my heart and life.

They are "you".  His Beloved.  My Family.

I pray that although we shall always be a "misfit" in this world, each of His will know how welcome we are belonging in His Family.  Eternally.  No longer a "misfit". 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Sunday, October 23, 2016

"The Comparison Game" - 10/23/16 - Luke 12-13



"There is far more to your inner life than the food you put in your stomach, more to your outer appearance than the clothes you hang on your body."(12:23)
 
We spent most of our day with Don and Rita on the Parade of Homes.  It was such a perfect day weather wise to go through the six homes open for tours.  How easy it is to begin comparing what I was seeing with what God has blessed us with in our home.  How easy it would be to slip into the state of jealousy, coveting, desiring the brand new, the latest styles.  There were some that I enjoyed and thought would be nice to have, but all in all, I came away content with the home He has given us to live life in.

Be it on the radio or the TV, it seems the world is screaming at us what we need to buy, to be, to have.  There are a lot more minutes of commercials than what I am wanting to actually watch or listen to  Therefore, I mostly listen to Pandora, Sirius, or cd's of Christian or pop artists. Whenever Curt is working in the shop, one of the first things he does is turn the radio on to a station covering the oldies. 

I usually try to tune out or skip through the commercials, but while in the shop working the other day, there was an advertisement that kept repeating for an upcoming fitness event.  Even though I can't remember word for word, the phrases that caught my attention and stuck were:  "do you want to make yourself more awesome."  "make yourself look awesome."  "be awesome."  And then the words which have struck a cord provoking not only sadness, but to actually cringe -  "save your own soul".

After hearing these words tumbling out, I started noticing other advertisements were about "buying something",  "nothing down-special financing", "driving something", "wearing something", everything to "make your friends and neighbors jealous". 

What emptiness the world is consuming hand over fist. 
What a shallow and wasteful way to live this short period of life on this earth. 
 
It isn't that I don't enjoy nice things. 
I am thankful to be driving a vehicle which is not only nice, but reliable.  My closet isn't overflowing, but I am blessed in being able to cover my body according to the seasons.  ABBA has blessed us with a home, although not the mansion on the hilltop, it is more than we ever dreamed we would be living in.   
 
All He has blessed us with doesn't make me who I am. 
It is only because of Christ I am my ABBA's.

 It isn't the stuff which has made me "so much more".  

I haven't found anywhere in His Word where He is telling us not to enjoy the blessings. 
He does tell us not to allow them to surpass His place in our lives - to not allow anything or anyone but Him to be our God.   I just keep coming back to the words I heard coming out of the radio and am so thankful His Truth filters it out.  Could you imagine a life where the main goal is to cause someone to be jealous of you or what you have?  How much of a burden it would be, not only emotionally, also financially. 

LIVING.  LIFE. 
IT ISN'T ABOUT THE STUFF.

Stuff isn't what makes you.  it breaks you.  Stuff won't last for eternity.  All stuff will quickly or slowly become useless.  It is a burden. 
 
It is Whom we live for - not what.  It is Whom we fill our heart, mind, life with. 

Stuff won't save your soul.  "You" won't save your soul.  
His Word tells us very clearly, "Jesus said to him, "I am The Way, and The Truth, and The Life;
no one comes to the Father but through Me."(John 14:6)


 
 
 
 

Saturday, October 22, 2016

"Listening" - 10/22/16 - Luke 10-11, John 10:22-42


   
 

"My sheep recognize My Voice. I know them, and they follow Me.  I give them real and eternal life. They are protected from the destroyer for good. No one can steal them from out of My Hand.   The Father who put them under My Care is so much greater than the destroyer and thief. No one could ever get them away from Him.  I and The Father are one heart and mind." (John 10:27-30)


 

There are moments it is just a faint whisper beneath the noise of this world.
Just barely heard amongst the words of others and myself going about in my head. 
 
And then, there are the moments, without any doubt whatsoever, within my whole being I hear Him.  Because His Voice is loud and clear. 
 
There are moments within my time of spending with Him each morning, of only my eyes "hearing" Him through His Word.  Those moments when my heart will actually leap at the verses, words, He has spoken for me to glean from. 

It has taken time spent with Him to be in a place where I no longer doubt it is my ABBA speaking. 
 
It has taken millions of moments spent in His Love Letter, His Word, to hear what He has written.  His Words all still stand True and Strong.  He always speaks in the same Truth and manner.  It has taken Him to come into my heart, after I invited Him in, and thoroughly transform it to where I am today.  To know He is continually cleansing my heart and mind with the power of His Voice.  His Word.

I didn't "rest" on His promises until I started to take into myself His Words. 
To heed what He was saying. 
To have faith and trust The Words spoken applied to me. 

Today, I have absolutely no desire to go back to the place where I do not "know His voice".  Where I do not hear it loud and clear, nor take heed to His instructions.  To be in a place where I am not conversing out loud or inside my head to "my Daddy".  To be in a place where I am not in continual prayer with Him.
 
To the place where I was going through the steps of this journey and I was not His.

"My sheep recognize My Voice.
I know them, and they follow Me.  
I give them real and eternal life.
They are protected from the destroyer for good.
 
No one can steal them from out of My Hand.   
 
The Father who put them under My Care is so much greater than the destroyer and thief.
 
No one could ever get them away from Him.  
 
I and The Father are one heart and mind."
 
Listen.  He is speaking to you as well.


Friday, October 21, 2016

"Look" - 10/21/16 - John 9:1-10:21



"Walking down the street, Jesus saw"(9:1)
 
I stood in the open field holding Ella.  The sun was sinking below the horizon and the moon was still hidden away.  She whispered she was scared.  I told her to look up.  Way up.  Our heads leaned back as far as they could go, we started to see them pop out.  She giggled as they began to appear everywhere we were looking.  No longer scared, but delighting in finding another star. 
 
She saw.  
She was looking and focusing with such intent, no longer scared of the darkness surrounding us. 

It's hard to know how many steps I have taken during my life.  It's even harder to know, or accept, how many times I walked without seeing.  without looking.  without knowing.  How many steps I walked and missed out on.  Just kept walking right on by.

I'm talking about God moments. 

Those times in your life when He places events, trials, tribulations, joys, sorrows, things, and people in your path.  Particularly people.

How many times have I walked and it wasn't until looking back and reflecting that I was able to see Him at work.  How many times when I received a note, a message, words from someone, telling me what an impact I have had on their lives for Him.  How often I sit back in amazement because I didn't have a clue He was using me then. 

I didn't have a clue because I was walking and not seeing anything except "me".
My focus was all about "me".  I was so wrapped up in "self" and yet He still used "me". 

Isn't He just totally Amazing!

His Words, "Walking down the street, Jesus saw", hit me right smack in the face.  Sometimes He uses any method to get my full attention.

He "saw" not only the blind man.  He "saw" you.  and He "saw" me. 

Here is our Savior. 
Our Savior who knew He was on the uphill climb towards The Cross standing  ahead of Him, and yet He was taking time away from Himself and "saw". 
He never in His walk acted as the martyr and He had ever right to. 
He did after all die for all of our sins. 
He was/is the ultimate sacrifice. 
He never in His walk asked others to feel sorry for Him. 
He shot straight from the hip, he laid the facts out and it was their choice to accept them. 
 
Just as it is our free will to accept Him too.

So, with this day before me, I wonder.   
I am wondering if I will look back on my day and see all He wanted me to see. 
How will I be as His Warrior in all the things I will say, do, think. 
I wonder if I will be searching Him out and focusing on Him. 

Each day I am praying I will hear His Voice say, "My Beloved, you saw". 
 

Thursday, October 20, 2016

"This Time and Place" - 10/20/16 - John 7-8

10/20/16 - John 7-8

"This Time and Place"

"Jesus said, "If I turned the spotlight on Myself, it wouldn't amount to anything. But My Father, the same One you say is your Father, put Me here at this time and place of splendor."(8:54)


Just as He did for our Savior, He has put each one of us here - in this place.  at this time. 
Do you ever marvel at that?  Do you ever recognize that nothing - not one incident - is by "chance"?
 
He gave each of us the freedom of choice.  Do you ever stop and realize He gave us The Gift of our Savior when free choice brought sin into this world?  Do you ever stop and try to grasp, before the world was - He had each of your days, your moments numbered?

Do you ever think about whom you are living for?  Is it for your "self" or for Him? 
Are you taking this treasure of life and living it for and in Him?  Are you sharing The Treasure of Him with all you meet?  Are you allowing Him to shine through "you"?  Are your "fruits" of Him?
 
Time goes too fast, too soon.  Please, take each moment He gives you and really look at the wonder of it all.  Each person you encounter - He planned for their path to cross yours - our Divine Appointments.  Each cloud, color of His nature, animal, rock, blade of grass - every single thing you encounter with your senses - He planned. 

It never ceases to cause my heart to leap when I read The Word He gives me for this time in my life.  It never ceases to give me comfort when His Word - through Scripture or song - comes running from my heart to my mind.  It never ceases to amaze me in the wonderment of this life, I am only getting a glimpse of how very much He loves me.  Loves you.  Loves all of us.

He has placed each one of us "here at this time and place of splendor." I pray we are all living with the spotlight on and for Him. 
 

 

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

"Gift of Praying" - 10/19/16 - Matthew 18



"When two of you get together on anything at all on earth and make a prayer of it, my Father in Heaven goes into action.  
And when two or three of you are together because of Me, you can be sure that I'll be there."
(19-20)
 
I could feel the cooler temps creeping in during the night through the open window.  These past few days have been such perfect weather and I shall miss it when winter makes its arrival.  Sooner than desired. 
 
While standing in the drive earlier this morning, the leaves were raining down from above, coming to rest and surrounding my feet in the vibrant shades of the fall rainbow.  The morning sunbeams catching the different colors, taking my breath away as I took in His amazing and awesome paint colors in all directions.  Just one more way He shows off His Glory to us.  I know He smiles upon hearing me say each fall,  "This one has to be the most beautiful fall I have ever experienced".  Knowing I will repeat myself with each next one. 
 
My heart smiled as the falling leaves reminded me of the many moments my life has been touched with the prayers from The Prayer Warriors in my life.
Each and every single day His Prayer Warriors, as numerous and colorful as the leaves on the trees, surround me, lifting me up with their heartfelt words.  This is where He is showing off  His greatest Glory - through them.  Through each of us,  as we are Prayer Warriors for each other.  The Creator of all, He desires most is to just be with us.  Desires most of all, to share the all of "us" with Him.  To be our Bestest Friend. 

To exchange words with Him.  For us to lap up His Words and not the world's.

His Word continually tells me -
Never am I alone.  He has me surrounded.  By Him.  His Family.
No matter where my steps take me in this life, I know He has me and He has it all.
His Love.  Even more beautiful than the season of fall. 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

"Only Jesus" - 10/18/16 Matthew 17, Mark 9, Luke 9:28-62



"But Jesus came over and touched them.
 
"Don't be afraid."  
 
When they opened their eyes and looked around, all they saw was Jesus, only Jesus."
(Matthew 17:7-8)
 
 
If I allowed myself, I could easily become consumed with life passing too fast, too soon, with the all of what needs done and isn't.  It seems the 'to do list' is only growing at times.  And my energy level is diminishing.
 
Last night we were on our way home from watching Adam and Jacob play football at the YMCA.  The temps were still in the 80's and the wind was still howling over the terrain.  Unusual for this time of year, but how I am loving it!  We were driving along and my mind was going over the jobs still undone and the little time left before the weather turned to the point we wouldn't be able to work.  I then went on and began thinking about all the jobs I had intended to do over the summer.  Resolving to the fact, there are some which will be moved on to next years list. 
 
As my mind was becoming consumed by the worldly, ABBA shone down brightly and caught my attention and my breath. 
 
His moon was hanging up in the sky.  Huge.  It looked as though it were looking through a peephole in the clouds, glowing in the darkness.  Everything was bathed in the soft, gentle light.  After arriving home, I sat out on the back deck watching it make its journey across the sky.  Mesmerized.  Completely. 
 
I wondered if the moon was one of His favorites in creation and smiled as He reminded me. 
 
"We" are His delight. 
 
He created all of creation for our enjoyment. 
 
I thought about how all of nature is taken care of by Him.  As He takes care of us. 
 
How easily it is to focus on the world and not on Him.  Of the jobs undone.  Of how quickly life is passing.  To become anxious and restless. 
 
I once again had taken my focus off of Him, allowing doubt and fear to creep in.  Robbing me not only of sleep, but of the life He has planned for me. His whispering catches my ear, beseeching  me to come to Him.

He always gives me His Words at the exact time my heart is in need of them.  I have only to listen for His Voice.

"Don't be afraid."

He was touching me to my inner self, the place where I try to hide emotions, thoughts, parts of me, I don't want to deal with.  Things that complicate living this life.  I have found there are some things easier to deal with packed away in this hidden place of my heart.
 
No matter how far away I think these things are, He knows.  He knows my heart better than I do.  

I once listened to words in a sermon regarding the wearing of masks in different situations.  I thought about those I wear a mask around and am in constant turmoil because I am not being as He designed me to be.  It is often the mask of defensiveness, guarded, cold, and walled.  I know this is opposite of how He created me because when not wearing this mask, I feel the freedom and peace within the all of "me".  He is growing "me" to have faith in His defense and protection instead of the false security of "the mask". 
 

In a study I am doing, there was the question, "what is your deepest fear?".  I came away discovering it is, "what if the lies I have been surrounded by are really The Truth".  "What if I am wrong in how I am walking?" 
 
He knows our deepest, darkest fears.  In Scripture, so many accounts of our Savior tell of His reaching down and "touching" in situations where touch wasn't what one would normally do.  He came down inside of our hearts, in the midst of the "what if" fear and touched us. He holds and reassures us, "Don't be afraid."  
 
So many places and times in my life He has spoken these words to me. 
I have only to listen,  hear, and focus on His Truth.

In moments of doubt, He has opened my eyes to His Word and reading accounts of those whom He never let down.  I look about to those who are alive today, whom I know are walking "in" Him by their fruits and see also my fruits are a reflection of Him.  satan wants nothing more than for us to step off of the foundation of Him and step into the quicksand of fear and doubt.  

I got up to walk into the house and again was drawn to one last look at His moon.  I knew our ABBA had taken the all of "me" and put my focus back upon Him.  Without doubt I know He will be with me tomorrow and always, just as He is now.  He is in complete control and I am able to stand on His promises - no matter what I will be walking through on my way Home to Him. 

How He always speaks to me through His Words. 
With His touch, I have opened my "eyes and looked around, all I see is Jesus, only Jesus."
 
 
 
 

Monday, October 17, 2016

"Bare Naked" - 10/17/16 - Matthew 16, Mark 8, Luke 9:18-27



"Self-help is no help at all. Self-sacrifice is The Way, My way, to finding yourself, your true self.       What kind of deal is it to get everything you want but lose yourself? What could you ever trade your soul for?"(Matthew 16:25-26)
 

At the end of the day.  Standing under lights.  Before the mirror. Totally naked.  
Nothing is hidden from us in our reflection. 

Just as we are when standing before our ABBA. 

Millions of self-help books in the world and yet it is still His Word that is total Truth. 
Totally accurate in leading us to who and what He designed us to be. 

 How often do we take a moment and really look at ourselves in God's mirror. 

Who or what is your God?  Have you traded your soul for the world?  Whose are you?  Do you see "you" as He does?  His Beloved.  What is the sole purpose of your life?  What word is your name linked with?  What legacy are you leaving?  When thought of, is it self or ABBA that stands out?

Most of all - where are you going?  And whom are you taking with you?
 
 
 
 

Sunday, October 16, 2016

"Eternally Remembered" - 10/16/16 - Matthew 15, Mark 7


"Later His disciples came and told Him, "Did you know how upset the Pharisees were when they heard what You said?"  Jesus shrugged it off. "Every tree that wasn't planted by My Father in Heaven will be pulled up by its roots.  Forget them. They are blind men leading blind men."
(Matthew 15:12-14)


"Forget them."


My heart hurts just reading these words.


"Forget them".


Not spoken by Jesus because He isn't of Love, but because He knew their hearts.  He knows what is within us.  He tells us what is in your heart come forth in your words and actions. 


My heart hurts when I am as the Pharisees. 


My heart is overwhelmed by His forgiveness, His grace, His mercy which have cleansed me of those moments.  Only because of Him am I able to confess, repent, and continue striving to be more like Him. 


Him - whom I am deeply, madly, head-over-heels in love with.


How thankful I am knowing, without doubt, I will never, ever, ever hear these words spoken in regard to me from my ABBA. 


 In Christ - we are His.  He is ours.  Forever. 
 
 
 
 
 

 

Saturday, October 15, 2016

"Overcoming A Battle Within" - 10/15/16 - John 6







Confession:  I am an emotional eater.

All of my life I have struggled with emotional eating.  It wasn't until I had Adam that my metabolism couldn't keep up with the amount of food I consumed.  Looking back and knowing I was able to out eat most men and still be super skinny, is probably why I never recognized I had an eating problem. 

And I do.    

I do very much enjoy food.  I enjoy watching cooking shows, talking/trying recipes cooking/feeding others.  I very much enjoy the different taste, textures, the way different things explode in your mouth and take over - like chocolate. 

There isn't anything wrong with enjoying food, but ABBA opened my eyes to the fact I was stuffing in large amounts of food, trying to fill a void.  A huge void. 
 
Today I am finding more and more often I am now turning to Him, rather than to food.  The food has pretty much become something I need for nourishment.  Through Him I am able to stop eating when my stomach is full and fight off the temptation of eating just to be eating. Or rather stuffing. 

He has made me aware whenever I am encountering the past, I fight the urge to run to the candy stuffing aisle.  Whenever sadness, fear, anxiousness, doubt, tries to envelope me, it is the savory, fat laden comfort foods I begin to crave.  Whenever He is drawing me out of my comfort zone - sweets take over my imagination.

He is showing me how I need to instead turn to Him. 

My body and mind have/are paying the price for this type of eating. 

As I am aging, I am finding the excess weight just doesn't want to leave.  It has affected  my knees, my energy level, my activities, my emotions.  Embarrassment has been the garment I would pick up and wear when going out in public.  I sometimes allowed it to keep me from doing work for Him.

It has been an interesting discovery how ABBA has not only been cleansing my spiritual being, He has also been working on my physical and emotional.  They are all tied in together. 

I will never be the twig I was back in the days before Adam, nor do I want to be.  There is a thing as too skinny.  He has brought me to realizing it isn't only healthy and to be physically able I am striving for, it is to be spiritually and emotionally healed.

It is exciting to allow Him to completely heal and consume the all of me.  It is exciting to recognize food or something else just doesn't fill me up, nor do I want "it" to.  It is exciting to recognize He has been  the only way I am able to take food for what it is.  Nourishment and pleasure in healthy amounts.  It is also exciting to accept "me" and know I am continually striving to be better in all areas of my life, including the physical.  He has opened my eyes to see it took much longer than overnight to accumulate the excess pounds I am carrying, so it will take much longer than overnight to lose it. (No matter how much I desire it to be gone - overnight).

There is no other substitution for Him. 
Only He is able to fill the "God-void" He created within us. 
Nothing or no one else.



Friday, October 14, 2016

"Treasures From Heaven" - Matthew 14, Mark 6, Luke 9:1-17


"Already coached by her mother, she was ready: “Give me, served up on a platter, the head of John the Baptizer.”(Matthew 14:8)
 

 
Each time I read this scripture, I find myself wondering what kind of life Herodias’s daughter ended up having.  Did she have nightmares?  Was her heart so hardened by then, that what she did catapulted her into an even more sin filled life?  Or did God touch her heart and break the cycle her mom began? 

Society has taken away the importance of the family unit over the past generations.  I know all of us are called by God to walk differently, thus some women have a career outside of the home (whom I admire for being able to do this as well as being a "mommy"). There were many years we made the decision for me to be a stay at home mom.  Years where we barely made it.  Many years only pulling in $13,000 for our annual income.  Throughout those years ABBA supplemented Curt's income by having me run a daycare, cleaning houses and mowing yards.  Anything to be able to be a stay-at-home mom.  ABBA knew this was a desire of my heart and provided.  Each and every time.  My faith grew as well as our children.  

It breaks my heart knowing I wasn't the best "mommy" I could have been because of times when I was too focused on me and not God.  How very thankful I am God is so much bigger than my mistakes!  I am so thankful too, the main thing I knew and made the most important priority was to teach our sons, and other children He put into my life, about God and His Word. 
 
From the moment He gave me Adam, my heart was changed.  I knew to my inner most being I must introduce our children to Him.  To know Him intimately.  Looking back, I am also seeing this was all God because at that time, I didn't know Him intimately.  He drew me into His arms and heart through our Adam and Nichalas.  And during those years, He also drew Curt in.

Thinking again about Herodias and the kind of mom she was in training her daughter to dance seductively.  What else did she train her up for.  Was she also willing to give over her daughter's body if needed?  Probably.  Herodias was all about herself.  She saw her daughter as a tool for getting what she wanted.  She had no thought or concern about her daughter's well being.  I think about so many mothers out there today who choose to be the same.  In the world there are so many children being used in the sex trade.  Some women choose to have children on purpose to be used as money tickets from the government, drugs, a tool to "keep a man" or to carry out their sinful ideas. Many are molding their children to carry on the sinful cycle. 

So far removed from how God intended children to be treated. 
 
The are Treasures from Heaven. 

There is a vast difference between a "mom" and a "mommy", and I often pray for mothers to become "mommies".  I so feel a healthy family unit is part of the progress needed to help recreate a healthy society.  Introducing children to an intimate relationship with God is the hub of it all.  Time around the supper table with each other, talking, listening and sharing each other- without the distractions of the world - aka phones, TV, books, computers, etc.   Making the home a safe haven from the world.  A building tool for a healthy foundation - a healthy cycle to continue on throughout future generations. 
 
Training them up to give God the glory in any situation they are in. 
Teaching them to make Him the center and core of their world. 
 
It scares me knowing there are many "Herodias's" training up children in this world - until I remember my Father is in control. 
 
He is bigger than anything/anyone.  
 
An article I read years ago about children being stolen by Joseph Kony in Uganda still grabs my heart.  I wonder what type of mother Kony had.  He imagines he’s a reincarnation of Jesus and calls his group “The Lord’s Resistance Army.”  As America becomes further and further from God, what will prevent something like this from happening here?  I am not blaming all sinful choices people make on their parents.  There comes a time when we make our own choices based on our own decisions.
 
Yet, I can't help but see how some women have taken such an important role and responsibility and lessened it on their priority list.  Time goes too fast, too soon.  There aren't any "do overs".  Once those moments have passed - they are gone.  Often I pray the women whose eyes aren't opened to how precious the gift of a child is - that they will be.  I pray they will see how very important their role is in being the beginning of training up not only their own children, but her future generations.   I pray our ABBA puts other "mommies" into the lives of these children to help in this major job.  He has provided such a big family to help one another.   
 
I pray that we shall all be "mommies (or daddies) of God". 
 
 
 
 

Thursday, October 13, 2016

"New Life" - 10/13/16 - Matthew 9&10


"But when Jesus had gotten rid of the crowd, He went in, took the girl's hand, and pulled her to her feet - ALIVE!"(9:25)


I so love this word picture He gives me today.

How He has "gotten rid of the crowd" - the crowd of sins. doubt.  lies.  false standards.

How "He went in" - into my soul.  my heart.  my mind.  my all.  

He "took the girl's hand" - He touched me. 
 
I am that girl.  You are that girl.  He has come in and taken each of us - by His Hand.

He "pulled her to her feet" - those in Him are able to stand up straight.  stand up strong.  stand firmly - because we are now planted in Him.  

"ALIVE" because of and in Him.  No greater way to be.  
 

 
 
 
 
   

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

"His Covering" - 10/12/16 - Matthew 8:14-34, Mark 4 & 5


"He told His disciples to get Him out of there to the other side of the lake.(Matthew 8:18)


I don't know how many times I have read this Scripture, but it only hit me this morning Christ "told His disciples to get Him out of there". 

As if He needed them to "get Him out of there".  Here is the Son of God, one who has complete power at the tip of His finger, getting help from mere humans.

You know, He asks the same of us.
 
He didn't need to give us The great commission, but He did. He doesn't "need" us to do His job.  He doesn't "need" us to do anything.  He desires to do so.  He desires to have us in His life and He in ours.  He desires us to lead others to Him. 

Our ABBA, The Creator of this world, when creating us, in His Image, put within us a deep desire to be "needed".  To have worth. To count for something.  To be recognized.  To be accepted.  To be desired.  And most of all.  most of all.  To be unconditionally loved.

Yet, here we are, the created ones, ignoring, setting aside all He has asked us to do.  Putting our "self" on top of the priority list.  We are picking and choosing which and what we want to do for our Lord.

The times I do become humble and think about putting my arrogance in His face, I am repulsed. 
 
And again, I am grateful He looks at me through Christ, seeing me, even in my sin, as Holy.  As His Beloved.  The Holy Spirit is convicting and growing me to be excited, more than dreading, when I am pushed out of my comfort zone.  He is energizing me, opening my eyes, ears, and heart to those who live outside of Him.  He is using me.  And for the most part, I am heeding His call.

But still there are moments when the human side of me steps in.  and I flat out refuse. 

Who do I think I am to do this? 

"He told the wind to pipe down and said to the sea, "Quiet! Settle down!" The wind ran out of breath; the sea became smooth as glass.(Mark 4:39)

He is "I AM".  God of all. 

There are so many times I haven't a clue how often, His Grace has saved me from when I am nothing but arrogant. 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

"God-Blessed" - 10/11/16 - Matthew 13, Luke 8

10/11/16 - Matthew 13, Luke 8

"God-Blessed"
"But you have God-blessed eyes - eyes that see! And God-blessed ears - ears that hear!"
(Matthew 13:16)


 I love seeing our ABBA everywhere I look. 
 
Knowing He is here, within, outside, omnipresent. 
 
I love seeing people, this world, through His eyes.  Seeing the blessings in every single portion of life. 
I love feasting my vision on His everlasting banquet.


I love hearing His Voice.  Knowing without doubt it is my ABBA.  I love hearing Him speak to me through His Word, through His Spirit, through His people. 
 
I love how He is all knowing, in total control, God.
I love He designed us to share intimacy in Him.
 

  

Monday, October 10, 2016

"Belonging" - 10/10/16 - Matthew 12:22-50



"Jesus didn't respond directly, but said, "Who do you think My mother and brothers are?"  He then stretched out His hand toward His disciples. "Look closely. These are My mother and brothers.   Obedience is thicker than blood. The person who obeys My Heavenly Father's will is My brother and sister and mother."(48-50)


It has taken years of saturating my "self" with His Word, prayer, counseling, to finally accept and realize - I am part of His "in" crowd.  I look about my life today and am overwhelmed with the love, acceptance, encouragement, accountability, and most of all, unconditional love, I receive from His family.


My family. 


I pray for those within His Family to never stop looking out to see those who are standing on the outside looking in.  I pray we never forget or don't realize, "we" are who bring those outside, inside to be adopted by Him.  I pray we will never overlook one soul who is longing for the comforts of belonging.  of knowing.  of security.  In Him. 


I pray for those who haven't accepted Him and entered into His Family.  I pray daily the lies they have been taking in will be removed and replaced with His Truth.  His Grace.  His Mercy.  His Forgiveness.


Him.  Our Savior.
"He then stretched out His hand toward"


Not to the select few, but to all.  All.  He wants to call all.  each one.  His Family. 
He desires for no one to be on the outside looking in.