Wednesday, February 29, 2012

02/29/12 - For the entire duration

Numbers 6:8 "For the entire duration of your consecration you are holy to God.

Consecrated - given over exclusively to a single use or purpose: dedicated, devoted, hallowed, sacred.

"For the entire duration"

Not just part or some - the entire - "given over exclusively to a single use or purpose".

It is my free choice to follow God. To give myself to Him through Christ. In doing so, I have been consecrated. Made Holy, pure, set apart by His blood.

It was explained to me once to picture a large see-through balloon with a smaller one inside of it. That smaller balloon represents me and the outer one is Christ. When God looks at me, He looks through Christ to see me, He who has consecrated me - made me Holy. Only then can I be with God. He is Holy and can not be with sin. And that is exactly what I am outside of Christ - sin.

I have recently read a book, "Hell is real (but I hate to admit it)". We are also taking a Downline Disciple Class. Two separate studies, two different authors, exact same words in them. It has refocused me, caused me to reexamine my life.

What is my single purpose? What am I dedicated to?

This morning I woke up thinking about the message in that book. The urgency in Matthew 28:18-20, "Jesus, undeterred, went right ahead and gave His charge: "God authorized and commanded me to commission you: Go out and train everyone you meet, far and near, in this way of life, marking them by baptism in the threefold name: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Then instruct them in the practice of all I have commanded you. I'll be with you as you do this, day after day after day, right up to the end of the age."

Go out and train everyone I meet. Do I? In the original Greek, "Go" is a participle. "Go" actually means, "While I am going, make disciples."

Being consecrated in/by Christ isn't only a life saver, blessing, honor, privilege. It is the uniform I am wearing. I belong to the Army of God. It is my job description - While in the act of living, I am to be training.

And do I? Does the thought of hell motivate me to set aside "self"? My insecurities, my issues? Do I see the lost? Try to build relationships with them as framework to introduce them to Him? To give them the free choice of Heaven or hell?

"for the entire duration of my consecration".............

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

02/28/12 - Why just her?

Numbers 5:11-31

Okay - this passage has always bothered me. Why just the adulterous woman? What about the man? And is there a limit to how many times the husband can do this? What if he is just jealous because of his insecurities?

I have found in reading scripture, many times God really has given woman a very influential/powerful role. The old saying, "If mama ain't happy - nobody's happy" has so much truth! The way God created us - we usually lead more with our emotions/feelings, not our brains. We are usually more nurturing. I'm not sure, but I feel God is holding us accountable more so because of this. The role of the wife, mother, influences the family unit and the ripples spread out far beyond.

I really struggle with what exactly is my role in Adam and Nichalas' lives now that they are grown men. I know that I will always be their mom, but now it is more about friendship. I can offer advice, but can't ground or discipline them. I try not to guilt or should them. Hold my tongue more often. Encourage and praise them on their Godly choices. It's just so different than when they were small. It leaves a feeling of not being needed - and that causes me to feel I have less worth..

That is another fault of mine. My worth - I have put so much of it into being their mom and not into being God's daughter. I am blessed that I can talk about this openly with Amber. It's such a blessing having another woman in my family!

Honestly, I used to take many of the ways women were treated in the scripture as an insult.

Now, I see it as an honor.

When death comes.. by Mary Oliver

two books, two different authors, read a few days apart, had parts of this poem in them that I had never read before.

I love the verses, "When it's over, I want to say all my life
I was a bride married to amazement."

When Death Comes

When death comes
like the hungry bear in autumn;
when death comes and takes all the bright coins from his purse

to buy me, and snaps the purse shut;
when death comes
like the measle-pox

when death comes
like an iceberg between the shoulder blades,

I want to step through the door full of curiosity, wondering:
what is it going to be like, that cottage of darkness?

And therefore I look upon everything
as a brotherhood and a sisterhood,
and I look upon time as no more than an idea,
and I consider eternity as another possibility,

and I think of each life as a flower, as common
as a field daisy, and as singular,

and each name a comfortable music in the mouth,
tending, as all music does, toward silence,

and each body a lion of courage, and something
precious to the earth.

When it's over, I want to say all my life
I was a bride married to amazement.
I was the bridegroom, taking the world into my arms.

When it's over, I don't want to wonder
if I have made of my life something particular, and real.

I don't want to find myself sighing and frightened,
or full of argument.

I don't want to end up simply having visited this world

Monday, February 27, 2012

02/27/12 - His order

Numbers 2:34 "The People of Israel did everything the way God commanded Moses: They camped under their respective flags; they marched by tribe with their ancestral families."

There is such an order about God. The way He has designed everything.


This wasn't some rag tag group of over 603,550 people. They were organized. In order. I can only imagine what this sea of people looked like from afar. The gold, jewels, their clothes, shoes that never wore out. All being led by a pillar of fire at night and a cloud in the day.

And still the people had a choice. As do we. To do everything the way God commanded. It is His way or the highway so to speak. On our own - away from His care - or under His wing in the palm of His hand.

My life. How well ordered is it? I strive to be a good steward of all He has blessed me with. Tax papers were delivered to the accountant before we left (PTL!!!). Our home and shop are getting a total clean/organization when we get back. I am tired of losing precious time looking for "something", taking care of "stuff". Stuff can be such a burden when not organized, sorted through and cast out what is not needed or used. I don't imagine the Israelites had a lot of "stuff" to load around. Reminds me of the wagon trains that headed west. Upon leaving they took so many "things" they couldn't live without, only having to leave it along the trail on their journey. I don't want to continue my journey with "stuff" I can't live without and realize I've been carrying all the wrong "stuff". I want my "stuff" to be about Him - eternity - love.

My spiritual life. I love how He is taking me through His word this year. How writing about verses, seeing how He speaks to others about the same sections, has made it more real. It sticks to me. It also has drawn me closer to Him.

Being organized - order in life. So like the universe He created. He created for six days and Sabbath the seventh. Do I "create" six days and Sabbath the seventh? Do I Sabbath everyday - yes. And what a blessing that is for me. For my relationship with Him. For my relationship with everyone.

I love how His Scripture is so alive.

How it all corresponds within itself.

How His Word gives order to my life.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

02/26/12 - They did it all

Lev 27:1-34, Num 1:1-54

As I was reading, sometimes skimming through, I was wondering if I had of been there then where I would have been placed. As part of a tribe to fight or to take care of The Dwelling of the Testimony.

Often I have wondered how He decided when, where, whom I am. What went into the placement of the era, the family I have, the area, the state, country I grew up in.

We love Liverpool NY. We could easily see living here. We love Adam's church and the excitement of it growing. Often I have also thought, before the beginning of time, He knew I'd be where I am, speaking, meeting the people I do. How amazing is that.

Then the last verse caught my heart.

" The People of Israel did everything that God commanded Moses. They did it all." (Num 1:54)

They did it all.

What a blessing to live in such a place where more than 603,550 persons did all God commanded. Even if it wasn't continual, to live in that moment. It would be like an Eden. To have God walk among you - and do all He commanded.

There's a reason for His commands. Only He sees the whole paradigm - which is why all He says, does makes sense - to Him. My job isn't to try and figure out the whys. It is to do all He commanded.

How I struggle with His commands versus self. I know I will never get it right until I die. But because of His great love, I try. I pray my fruit encourages and draws others to Him. To make disciples and teach them to train up disciples too.

That one by one we can all become followers of His.

How marvelous it would be to live in a world where "all did as He commands".

Saturday, February 25, 2012

02/25/12 - He ripped off my harness of slavery

Lev 26:11-13 "I'll set up my residence in your neighborhood; I won't avoid or shun you; I'll stroll through your streets. I'll be your God; you'll be my people. I am God, your personal God who rescued you from Egypt so that you would no longer be slaves to the Egyptians. I ripped off the harness of your slavery so that you can move about freely."

When I was young, I didn't really have any friends. God blessed me with one or two here and there, which today I can look back and see He was trying to save me. I was made fun of - today the word would be bullied. I was not included, ganged up on and threatened - physically, verbally abused. All the times in gym I cringed, when the captains had to pick teams. I was always picked last and they would argue about having to have me on their team.

I always felt terribly alone - and I wanted to die.
Never did I try suicide with razors or ropes. But, I did with self-destruction. Drugs, alcohol and men. At one of my lowest points, I can remember sitting on the windowsill, nine stories up, and just wanting to slip off.

Something stopped me. Looking back I see now it was God. Then - it was just "something".

Not until Adam was born did I really "buckle down" and get to know God. I know one of the reasons I love this verse is, "I'll set up my residence in your neighborhood; I won't avoid or shun you; I'll stroll through your streets. I'll be your God; you'll be mine". He has taken up residence within me. He knows me through and through and still He loves me. He will never avoid or shun me. He desires to be with me. He is mine and I am His.

He has given me Curt - who after 29 years knows me better than anyone - and still he loves me. Wants to be with me. He has blessed me with two wonderful sons, who know and love me. A daughter-in-law, who also loves me. He has blessed me with many friends, who call me, who want to be with me.

I don't know why that I was bullied. I was very shy, no self-confidence. Probably an easy target. I do know today I am able to recognize the victims. To have empathy for them. I do know one of my gifts is encouragement. And that is what I try to do. To help these victims God puts in my life. I know I do not want anyone to go where I have been. It really was a type of hell.

He didn't rescue me from Egypt, but He did rescue me from this world. A world that lied to me, made me feel unloved, unwanted, undesirable. He has whispered into my heart truths - of how "fearfully and wonderfully made I am", of how I am "in the palm of His hand". How He gave His only Son - for me -

Because He loves me.

I know also, another reason I love being in His Word, carrying it in my heart, is because it is Truth. Truth that I can stand on and in. Truth that makes me want to live for Him.
Truth that "He has ripped off the harness of my slavery so that I can move about freely"

In Him

with Him

for Always.

Friday, February 24, 2012

02/24/12 The "needs" of life

Leviticus 25:18-22 "Keep my decrees and observe my laws and you will live secure in the land. The land will yield its fruit; you will have all you can eat and will live safe and secure. Do I hear you ask, 'What are we going to eat in the seventh year if we don't plant or harvest?' I assure you, I will send such a blessing in the sixth year that the land will yield enough for three years. While you plant in the eighth year, you will eat from the old crop and continue until the harvest of the ninth year comes in."

I marvel at our God. He knows we need rest, but a year! Throughout this passage, (Lev 23:1-25:23) He commands that we rest. Our Sabbath. Time to worship, reflect, and trust in Him.

It is hard for me to just "rest". I struggle with getting my worth in my work. He is helping me to realize this and work for His glory. I think about how hard it is to trust that He will provide as we rest. I can only imagine what some of the persons were feeling regarding a whole year off. Provision for their family, livestock, etc. What would they do for a whole year?

We started following Dave Ramsey Financial Peace quite a few years ago. I need to get back on it totally. It doesn't make sense on paper, but it works. It works because it puts God first. Sets priorities. Not only for the material, but also for the spiritual. It causes me to see that this is just a temporary place. That things I see, want, are only temporary. It causes me to rethink things - is it a need or a want.

Visiting Adam - so thankful for this time, has been a time of rest. So hard for me to not be cleaning, organizing, decorating, just to rest. I've been reading, cooking, exploring. I've also been able to drive our Envoy, which Adam has here in NY. We have his "96 Camero. We also had a loan approved and went looking for a replacement for the Envoy. After prayer, not feeling a peace, we came to the conclusion. Right now replacing the Camero is just a want. We laugh that it's the getting in and out that is so hard because we are so old and out of shape and it is sooooo low!

I love the peace that comes from trusting in Him. To know He will provide. He does - every time. Even when we had nothing - He provided. After having Adam, after losing part of our insurance, my income, because I had to stop working and go on almost complete bed rest - or lose Adam - after losing a new home we were in the process of building - due to loss of income - we were so broke. We ate one small meal a day. I breastfed Adam. There was just enough money to pay rent, utilities, bills, and gas.

I had so much pride - I was so foolish. A girlfriend, Teresa, called me one day and wanted to come by on her lunch hour. She asked if she could bring me anything and I said no - on a diet. Reality was I had too much pride and wouldn't accept her gift of food. I didn't want anyone to know how broke we were and I didn't have any money to reimburse her - too much pride to accept that she wanted to buy me lunch. As she left, she wrapped up half her uneaten hamburger and fries, then threw it in our trash. When she was gone, I went over to the trash, got it out and ate it. I was starving. I didn't recognize He was providing a gift of food through Teresa - which I refused.

A blessing.

I have a hard time accepting blessings. I love to give them though. Sign of control and power. Over the years when I begin to decline a blessing from someone, God brings to mind Teresa. In my refusing to accept her blessing, I wasn't allowing her to give a blessing. He is helping me change. To rest, have faith He will provide. That doesn't mean being lazy, or being a bad steward. It means being a good steward of what He is giving me. To share - not find my worth in what I have and do.

He is changing me to help me see this time with Adam isn't about working. It isn't about what "jobs" I can do for him to feel needed. It's about harvesting, building on our future, giving me treasures to fill my heart.

It's about the needs in life.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Love this

"We've learned that when we live our lives with nothing to hide, it strips evil of any hold over us. If we always appear as if we have everything together, how are we ever going to be there for other hurting people?" Debbie Macomber - God's Guest List

02/23/12 "Tough Love"

Lev 20:7-8 "Set yourselves apart for a holy life. Live a holy life, because I am God, your God. Do what I tell you; live the way I tell you. I am the God who makes you holy."

Throughout this passage (Lev 20:1-22:33) He states, "I am God". There is no discussion, debate or argument. He states a law and then, "I am God".

This gives me thoughts about parenting. So many are into being their child's best friend rather than their parent. They are into negotiating rather than being the rule maker. There are many, many mistakes I made with the boys. Thankfully, God is so much bigger than my mistakes. When you plant yourself firmly in His Word, you are given wisdom which is a necessity for parenting. Kids want discipline/rules - it is their security. It is also a sign to them that they are loved. "Tough love" parenting is hard, but thankfully my Daddy loves me enough to "tough love" me. His discipline, teaching, rules, encouragement, sometimes allowing me to suffer my consequences from bad choices, aways being there, have made me into who I am today. "Striving to set myself apart and live a holy life." We are blessed with two Godly sons. We've never struggled with drugs, alcohol, partying, girls. We set boundaries and unless there was a justifiable reason, the line in the sand wasn't moved. When they were young, we took a discipline class at church. I can say without a doubt it was the beginning of how they turned out today. "Striving to set themselves apart and live a holy life."

While here, we have had so many persons come up and share with us how much they enjoy Adam. There have been many persons who have shared with us what a testimony Nichalas and Amber have been in their relationship, their choice to stay virgins until they married, after dating for five years. It is such a blessing I have that our sons bring glory to God.

Only because of Him.

It breaks my heart when I think back to all the mistakes I have/continue to make. How thankful I am for the relationship I have with them. To say I am sorry and ask for forgiveness. I am so thankful that God is the foundation of our relationship. Otherwise, we would not have been able to endure all of the hardships or my many mistakes.

I'm not being hard on myself - just honest. I was in such a depression most of the early years, focused on me. Not Him. Perhaps that is why I yearn for a do-over. What a blessing His grace and mercy are.

When I think again of "tough love", I picture a child floating in the ocean - this world. Our parenting is their life preserver, surrounding them as they float in this vast space. The rope to the ship is the rope to Him.

That is what His Word is to me - my life preserver. The rope - the Holy Spirit which binds me to Him. I am thankful for His law, His Word and blessed because He is my God. How He has transformed me to be Holy.

That He is a God who parents me in "tough love".  His Holy - Pure - Love.
Because He desires what is best for me - even more so than I do for our sons. 

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

02/22/12 - Apathy

Leviticus 19:18 "Don't seek revenge or carry a grudge against any of your people. "Love your neighbor as yourself. I am God.

I struggle with this. A lot. I try to justify my feelings. The more I pray for God to help me love as He does, the more of His Word He sends to me - showing that my feelings of revenge, or the grudge, are not justified. That they are a sin. That they cause me to have bitterness, anger.

And apathy.

Apathy -Lack of interest or concern, especially regarding matters of general importance or appeal; indifference. Lack of emotion or feeling; impassiveness.

This is totally against God's Word, His way - it isn't love. Yes, He does say at a certain point to "shake the dust from our feet", but doesn't say to stop loving them. Stop praying for them. He instructs us to "not cast pearls before swine". I'm all about the shaking and not casting - it's actually easy to do. To walk away and not look back.

To develop apathy.

It's the loving and praying for a person who has rejected me, caused harm to me, who doesn't love me or to those I love . To ask God to bless them as He has me. I fight with the thinking that after being the type of person they are, I don't want them to have the blessings I do from knowing Him. I don't want to share Him with them. How selfish revenge and carrying a grudge makes me. How it comes between me and Him.

I am thankful that the Holy Spirit "moans and groans" for me - that God knows my heart better than I do. I am thankful that He knows, even when I fail, that I do not want to have a heart of apathy.

In doing so, I create a hardened heart towards that person. I am not vulnerable towards their attacks. I am not trusting in my God to protect and lift me up.

I am not trusting Him and His promises.

How like the Israelites on their journey I am. So often, I whine, complain, cry out in fear, want to go back to my "comfort zone". So often, I do not trust in His way, His time, His Word. This whole passage today (Lev 17:1-19:37) are laws that He created to prevent us from self-destructing. Which we are all about. Look at our world today - by not living by His way, we are in such a state of destruction. The economy, the environment, and most of all the state of our minds, bodies, emotions. There is so much evil that is seen in our present world.

Because so many have chosen to not live by His Word - His laws.

Please may I not only turn from apathy towards those who have hurt me, but to all of those who are lost in this world.

To love as He loves.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

02/21/12 - Sin is a cancer

Lev 14:33-15:34

I remember when someone was upset because they felt God was too strict about sin - that there isn't a gray area with Him. There can not be - for He is Holy - without sin. The reason He has such strict guidelines is because sin is a cancer. It will spread and consume all of me. It has to be removed from my body/life. Just as they were instructed for the procedures regarding infectious skin diseases and mildew and fungus in these passages.

How thankful I am that it is only through Christ that I become totally clean. There isn't any way I can remove it by myself. I can try, but I will fail. He has given me a way to live my life, to help me walk in His way - but I am unable to cleanse or heal myself from sin. Only in Christ. I am thankful for His Word from which I receive His Wisdom. It makes life so much easier. I am thankful for how He has healed me from the consequences of my sins. I am so very thankful that He has made me whole.

He is my great physician.

Monday, February 20, 2012

02/20/12 - Tell

Leviticus 12:1-14:32

I'm thinking this is where "cleanliness is next to Godliness" came from. From childbirth to skin conditions. And I have always wondered why a woman's purification days were double after having a girl versus a boy. How did all of this occur if they were marching? Did the unclean, who lived outside the camp, help each other?

I am so very thankful for Christ - who has cleansed me with His blood. No more lambs, ox, bird, grain offerings. He gave His blood for me. May I not lose sight of how much He gave for me - to me. May I live so He is seen. Yesterday, the sermon was about telling others of Jesus - of how essential this needs to be in our lives.

Others will not know if we do not tell them.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

02/19/12 - Strange fire

Leviticus 1-2 "That same day Nadab and Abihu, Aaron's sons, took their censers, put hot coals and incense in them, and offered "strange" fire to God—something God had not commanded. Fire blazed out from God and consumed them—they died in God's presence."

To die in His presence - outside of Him - no greater sorrow - for it would be Hell - eternal Hell. I know I am unable to really grasp what total separation from God is, but think often that Christ did that for me. He was totally separated from God when He became my sin offering. He did this because He loved me.

I was looking at Adam last night. Again, I was filled with such love for my child. Thinking back 27 years to his birth, remembering what was going on. My first time to see him, breast feeding, hearing his cry as he was wheeled from the nursery. Even that early I knew his cry. Laying him out on my pillow and being amazed that just hours earlier he had fit inside my womb (all 9.14 lbs 23 inches). Thinking how much I love both he and Nichalas - and now Amber. Without hesitation, I would give my life for them.

And Christ - He died for me and also for all. Those He knew would not love Him. Those that would/will offer up to self rather than Him - to do things their own way. I pray the fire I offer up to Him is not "strange". I pray the fire I offer up causes Him to smile. For His glory - not mine. I pray I will love as He loves - not just my children - but all.

For none should be separated from Him. Help me to reach others for you with each step I have left.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

helping or enabling

Last night when Curt was walking out of the gas station, a woman approached him and asked if he could give her a ride to her mother's apartment. She got into the back seat with me and told me her car had ran out of gas on the interstate and she didn't know what she was going to do. During the ride, she then asked if I had a couple of dollars to give her for bus fair in the morning. I said I didn't. She wanted to know if they (pointing towards Adam and Curt) would have a couple of dollars. "They" meanwhile were sitting very quiet in the front seat. Adam finally shook his head no and Curt said we'll have to see. When we got to her destination, Curt handed her some money folded up. She took it and then asked, "how much did you give me". He said four dollars and she said a disappointed, "oh" and got out.
Here is where I struggle. I do not want to become hard hearted to those in need. I pray regularly that God will use me in any way. I do not want to miss an opportunity to be a Disciple for Him. Why I said no to giving her money. I had noticed her standing outside the door of the gas station smoking a cigarette. When Curt came over to the car with her, he told us she had said her car had broken down and she needed a ride. In the car she told me she had run out of gas. I'm sitting there thinking, "where did you get $8 for a pack of cigarettes" and then you're asking for bus fare. Adam said he said no because there are so many people begging around here and usually the same ones.
So - how do you know when you are giving and not enabling? I don't want to exhaust our resources for a "milker" when there is someone who really does need the help. I do pray and try my best to follow His lead. Honestly, last night I wasn't feeling a peace about giving her money - it was only a couple of dollars. It was her attitude - like as long as she was in the car she was going to get as much as she could get. Is this my "fear" of the uncomfortable talking to me or God? Even today, I still feel a peace about not giving her money. I felt the peace in regard to giving her a ride. I felt that she was "fishing" for more when she said her car ran out of gas on the interstate. I felt a "warning bell" go off when I thought about going and getting her gas, etc.
The last time we were here, a man was begging by a stop light. We went and bought him food from a sub shop. By the time we returned, he had two other bags of food on the ground beside him. We drove off wondering if this was his full time job. I just don't want to get caught up in the emotion and miss His lead.
Sometimes it's a really tough call on what to do.

02/18/12 - Christopher Adam Holtschlag

Leviticus 8: 36 "Aaron and his sons did everything that God had commanded by Moses."

This day - 27 years ago - we received our first beautiful child.

"Christopher Adam Holtschlag"

Because of Adam, I realized how I needed to become a follower of God - of Christ - to be in an intimate relationship with Him. That I had such a big responsibility in raising Adam up in Him. I love how God used such a beautiful child to draw me to Him.

How He has used a child so often over the years. His precious Child - Jesus - for me - for all of us.

We are here in Liverpool, NY with Adam. There aren't enough words to express the joy I have in my heart - just being with him, seeing him, hearing his voice. The hugs - just being able to look up and watch him, his expressions, to drink him in. He is so engraved in my heart.

I had the same joy just being with Nichalas yesterday. Looking at them - seeing young men - remembering little boys. No matter their ages, I will always see my babies in them. So very thankful for how in love Nichalas and Amber are. How well she fits into our family - how she is such a part of it. Knowing you are preparing Adam's bride for him, that she is out there somewhere - your time, your way. I am so looking forward to meeting the second "daughter" I have been praying for these past 27 + years.

This scripture, "his sons did everything that God had commanded" gives me cause to smile. Being in their "homes" and seeing their Bibles laying out - not covered with dust. Seeing little signs of their church, bulletins, notes, cards. Hearing them talk of joining Bible study groups. Nichalas and I discussing scripture or sermons. knowing that he is leading Amber closer to God, taking his role as their Spiritual leader very seriously. It makes my heart sing knowing our sons are His. Without a doubt - I know our three "kids" are His. And that they will train up their children in Him. I know, they being human, are not doing everything God commanded. I do know too, they are covered by Christ blood, His grace and mercy. Thank you that you have allowed me to live to see you in our lineage. I continue to pray it continues on and others will be brought to you through our generations.

The ripple effect for you.

Friday, February 17, 2012

02/17/12 a sin is a sin

Numbers 4:1-6:30

Sin. So many sacrifices for the different types of sin - but not different levels. A sin is a sin. It doesn't matter the sin - any sin separates us from God for He is Holy and can not be a part of sin.

I am so very thankful my Savior covers all sin that I have done and will do. His grace and mercy. This doesn't give me full rein to sin. Quite the opposite. It motivates me. I desire to be as Christlike as possible. For His glory.

His love amazes me . The more I am aware of it, the more I strive to love as He does. It causes me not to be selfish and to draw others to Him. His love is so perfect.

His sacrifice draws me into Him.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

02/16/12 His Light

Numbers 8:1-2 "God spoke to Moses: "Tell Aaron, Install the seven lamps so they will throw light in front of the Lampstand." 3-4 Aaron did just that."

Light - the power of light. Amazing how even a small candle can light up a room. It takes only a pinpoint to show light in the darkness. This gives me such hope in such a dark world. Knowing His light is within me - so powerful. To stand on His promises.

This is such a dark world we live in. As time continues on and man is serving self, it is becoming darker. How thankful I am for His umbrella of protection that shields me from things I am so unaware of.

And His light. It draws me in - it guides me - it is my hope.

I pray that I allow Him to shine through me. To be a disciple for Him. That I too will "throw light" in this world.

Without hesitation - without wondering why, what, how, etc. That self won't get in the way. Just do His will - like Aaron - who was waiting for the command - without hesitation.

"and Aaron did just that".

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

02/15/12 my own personal love letter....from Him

Numbers 7:1-89

Again, I am so thankful that I live on this side of Christ. That I have been anointed and consecrated by His blood, His death and resurrection. To be secure in the knowledge that because I am in Him - I am His.

"When Moses entered the Tent of Meeting to speak with God, he heard the Voice speaking to him from between the two angel-cherubim above the Atonement-Cover on the Chest of The Testimony. He spoke with him." (vs89)

I love that all of those in Christ can go into Him and speak with Him, hear Him speak 24/7. We are promised because we are familiar with Him, we will know His voice - that He will call each of us by name.

How thankful I am that by being on this side of Christ, I have an intimate relationship with Him. One of love, not a ritual or sense of duty. One I look forward to , cling to, bask in, and grow in. How thankful I am for His Word to fill me up and give me direction. That He speaks to me, conveys to me just how very loved I am by Him.

To know that His Word is my very own personal love letter from Him.

How I love Him!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

02/14/12 hard headed learner

Numbers 9:15-23 The Message (MSG)
The Cloud
15-16 "The day The Dwelling was set up, the Cloud covered The Dwelling of the Tent of Testimony. From sunset until daybreak it was over The Dwelling. It looked like fire. It was like that all the time, the Cloud over The Dwelling and at night looking like fire.
17-23 When the Cloud lifted above the Tent, the People of Israel marched out; and when the Cloud descended the people camped. The People of Israel marched at God's command and they camped at his command. As long as the Cloud was over The Dwelling, they camped. Even when the Cloud hovered over The Dwelling for many days, they honored God's command and wouldn't march. They stayed in camp, obedient to God's command, as long as the Cloud was over The Dwelling, but the moment God issued orders they marched. If the Cloud stayed only from sunset to daybreak and then lifted at daybreak, they marched. Night or day, it made no difference—when the Cloud lifted, they marched. It made no difference whether the Cloud hovered over The Dwelling for two days or a month or a year, as long as the Cloud was there, they were there. And when the Cloud went up, they got up and marched. They camped at God's command and they marched at God's command. They lived obediently by God's orders as delivered by Moses."

So much repetition in this passage. A passage for a hard headed learner - like me.

How often instead of following His lead, do I go off on my own schedule? How often do I end up in a place away from where He wants me and yell, "help". Oh how exasperated I get with me. I can only imagine how He must feel.

And then He tells me, "There is nothing you can do that stops me loving you - nothing". And yet, again He rescues me - brings me back to His dwelling. I am learning to watch and wait upon His time, His way. I am learning to Focus, Faith and Trust (FFT). Being in His Word enables me to hear His voice, His direction. And in doing so, I am learning to enjoy life more. To celebrate "camping" and "marching".

In "camping" He has blessed me with many, many memories. Celebrations in getting to know people, to become family with them. To utilize the resources He has given me. To prepare for the march ahead. To be a good steward. To explore the time of "camping". And sometimes, when it is time to "march", I've become so attached to the campsite, it is bittersweet to march onward to the next leg of the journey.

During the "march" though, if I focus on Him, it becomes an adventure. Seeing new sights, sharing experiences with family as we march along together. Knowing our Commander in Chief has everything in His control - FFT.

And He knows when we need to "camp" or "march". He wants what is best for me. He loves me. I pray I will continue to grow and follow His lead. Accept His time - His way. That in all parts of this journey I will step aside and follow Him

I pray I will "live obediently by God's orders". )

Monday, February 13, 2012

02/13/12 Color

Exodus 37:1-39:31

Color - gold, silver, bronze, blue, purple, and scarlet. Even mirrors to reflect.

As I sit here at our kitchen table, looking out the window, His blanket of snow is beginning to cover the earth. Steadily falling straight down, peaceful and serene. The blanket of white filling in the nooks and crannies of the trees. The contrast against the dark wood is making the graceful, beautiful lines stand out. It looks like a snow globe. And within a few weeks - there will be a riot of color popping out. Pinks, reds, white, yellow, and purple in all different tones.

I love to look at peoples' eyes. The color. Curt has eyes that are a Caribbean sea blue green - just beautiful. They say Elizabeth Taylor's were purple. Our skin tones, the beauty of brown, black, tan, red, white.

I love how He created color. How He created the different senses. I love how He created things for our senses to enjoy. The smell of perfume, freshly washed baby, clothes from the line, the skin of your child. Taste of chocolate first thing in the morning exploding in your mouth, home cooking, desserts. To feel the touch of a loved one, a hug from someone you miss, the squeeze of a hand. To see and soak in the beauty of those you love, the colors, the bright eyes when you are seen. To hear, "I love you", the call of, "mommy", the sound of a child's laughter.

He could have made everything without colors, scents, feel or sound. He didn't. God told Moses exactly what materials and colors to use. Only the best and finest. His Word, His nature, His creations, His people, all tell me He loves color. It amazes me how He utilizes all the same "equipment" and yet no one looks exactly alike out of all His creations.

Our Abba is a God of color, joy, love, laughter - celebration.

My Abba - He gives me treasures for my senses.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

02/12/12 - Where is my heart?

Exodus 35:29 "Every man and woman in Israel whose heart moved them freely to bring something for the work that God through Moses had commanded them to make, brought it, a voluntary offering for God."

Voluntary offering. He doesn't want it - our "jewelry" - if it isn't because our heart wants to give it. Otherwise, we would be like slaves, robots, without free choice.

This is yet another thing that wows me about God. He gave us His most precious "jewel" - our Christ. Knowing that not everyone would accept Him - because He has given us free choice.

No one loves like He does, to the depth - the unconditional - the constant - from the east to the west. No one.

And still, I hold back on giving up my "jewelry" to Him. I cling to them and wear them with - the self - pride - false sense of security - selfishness - self righteousness. All about self. And why do I do that? When His way is what is right to wear my "jewelry" with. To belong to Him - to His family - to be loved like that. In all purity - all that is good.

Reading that so many came together for building His Sanctuary- the many, many gifts and talents - their "jewelry". This Spiritual Battle we are in for the lost souls can not be fought alone. We have to get on board - we have to give Him our "jewels" as a voluntary offering. For only then are we giving Him our heart. Where our treasure is - there is our heart. Where our heart is - there is our passion.

"So Moses sent out orders through the camp: "Men! Women! No more offerings" (Exodus 36:6)

I pray that I too will give, give, give so much until the day I hear His victory call when He returns and cries out "no more offerings".

How exciting to be using my "jewels" for building more of His Sanctuaries!

Saturday, February 11, 2012

02/11/12- all my jewelry

Exodus 32:24 "Who has gold?' And they took off their jewelry and gave it to me. I threw it in the fire and out came this calf."

Aaron's excuse always sounded so lame to me. I'm sure Moses was thinking, "yea, right". So often, my excuses are even lamer.

Particularly when it comes to being a good steward with the "jewelry" He has given me. It comes in all forms. Time, money, gifts, talents - how often I "waste" what is given to me - use it for self and not Him. He has instructed me to tithe regularly. My first fruits, my best. How often do I take the best and leave the leftovers for Him?

I have found when giving Him the "first fruits" my priorities, the way I live my life changes. I desire to give Him more. When Aaron said, "I threw it into the fire", I wonder how often do I do the same. Intentionally utilizing my "jewelry" for me and then be surprised when " a calf (sin) comes out". God knows my heart. He knows how I want to use my "jewelry".

Moses was so angry. Do I get that angry about sin? When I see the "calf" being worshiped and not God? When it is me that puts self before Him? Tolerance - another tool of satan. How numb it makes us to His ways being broken. Tolerance - another way of playing with fire and "out came a calf".

I pray I will be a better steward of His "jewelry". To stand firm as Joshua did beside Moses - even when so many do not. I pray that my face glows ("the skin of his face glowed because he had been speaking with God" Ex 34:29) because I am speaking with God, living for Him.

Being a good steward for Him.

With all my "jewelry"

Friday, February 10, 2012

02/10/12 - His one time sacrifice

Exodus 29:15 "Slaughter the ram and take its blood and throw it against the Altar, all around."

All the blood - the oil - the beauty of the Sanctuary - all the gold - their clothes - covered with blood and oil.

I keep thinking back to the Garden of Eden. The beauty, perfection and then sin came into the picture.

It saddens me that Christ blood had to be "thrown" against sin so I may be with Him. It saddens me that our free choice causes His beauty to be covered with sin. For that is what we are - created in His image.


Again, how very thankful I am for my Savior - who in His death and resurrection - "threw His blood against the alter" for me. That in His eyes - through Christ - I am seen as His Beauty.

Because He loves me.

That His one time sacrifice is enough.

No greater love.

Thursday, February 09, 2012

02/09/12 - Acacia Wood

Exodus 25

Acacia Wood is commanded to be used in the building of so many things. It is prized for its extreme durability and the grains' "flame-like" appearance. When different light is shone on it - it can change color. It can be cleaned with water - so dense it won't permeate it. Untreated it can last up to 40 years. Not prone to scraping, holds up to hard use, doesn't need coddled. Resistant to fungus - which causes rot. Extract is used to help endurance of other cheaper woods.

Most of the Acacia wood was then to be covered with a veneer of gold. Pure gold is very soft. It is one of the few pure metals that is yellow. Chemically unaffected by air, moisture, corrosion. Most malleable and ductile of all metals. One single gram can be beaten to a sheet of 1 sq. meter. An ounce can be beaten into 3000 square feet. Gold leaf can be beaten so thin it is translucent, which appears greenish blue because it strongly reflects yellow and red. It is used as an infrared shield. Readily creates alloys with many other metals,, which then modify it to be utilized in different ways. Gold has been a valuable and highly sought-after precious metal for coinage, jewelry, and other arts since long before the beginning of recorded history. Gold standards have been the most common basis for monetary policies throughout human history.

Acacia wood. He knew this was the best wood to withstand the travel, the weather conditions, take down/put up, the journey. Just like with us.

Our foundation must be made of "Acacia wood".

Only He can make us extremely durable through His Word, the Holy Spirit within us, Sabbath time with Him. Only by losing "self" and becoming one with Him do I become "the most durable" for my life's journey. It has to be His "Acacia Wood". All the qualities it holds, can be mine too. The durability, the beauty, originality - so many things that are found only in this type of wood. Such beauty in His inner works.

And then to cover it in gold. It amazes me that they were able to construct all of this in the middle of the desert, in a tent city. To be able to obtain materials needed - no local lumberyard! The gold - another miracle. From the Egyptians. As early as 2600 BC Egyptian hieroglyphs claimed gold was "more plentiful as dirt". It is first mentioned in Gen 2:11. He provided all the resources needed to build this sanctuary - in the desert - in a tent city.

And it brings to mind how He provided the resources which transformed my "tent" into Acacia Wood - His sanctuary. How He has covered my "Acacia Wood" in His gold. Valuable and highly sought after by Him. Precious. His Gold standards I strive to live by.

How my King of Kings has turned me into His Golden princess.

It takes my breath away knowing that when He looks at me - He only sees beauty. He is so proud of me. He is so in love with me. He desires to be with me. All the things I see, think when I look at our sons - He feels so many times over for me.

I so love that I am the daughter of The King.

Wednesday, February 08, 2012

02/08/12 - Sabbath

Exodus 23:12 "Work for six days and rest the seventh so your ox and donkey may rest and your servant and migrant workers may have time to get their needed rest."

Nichalas, a few years ago, taught me of the importance of taking Sabbath. He was so right. Our society has come so far away from taking a Sabbath - to rest daily IN Him - IN His Word - a time to worship, the adoration and praise of God. Too busy, too selfish, too "self". Everything worldly points to hurry up, just do it, fill every minute up with work, school, activities, etc. Just go, go, go. And satan loves that.

And the more "busy" we become, the less Sabbathing we do. Too fast, too soon is the speed of life. Before you know it you're looking back and realizing you are past middle age. Less time ahead of you than behind. How much of that living was spent Sabbathing?

We are told to pray without ceasing. Do I? For the past 12 years I have tried to Sabbath each morning In Him. The heart transformation I have experienced through being in His Word every day is mind blowing. It has helped me so much in not being anxious, to let go of "my" schedule and follow Him. Too see that all will work out.

Whenever I see someone who is on constant go, looking anxious, tired, frazzled, I just want to shout, "Stop - Sabbath In Him".

I know it doesn't make sense, so much about Him doesn't. That is where the faith, trust, and focus come in as your tools. Amazing how when I spend a block of time resting in Sabbath with Him every day, it begins. The peace and joy. The fruits of the Spirit take hold and rule my life. Priorities change. Things are accomplished. I am blessed with a structured life even in the middle of this chaotic world. And I find the world looks on in wonder because it really should not work that way. Taking time to Sabbath In Him should put me behind and it only puts me ahead.

You have to Sabbath.

Tuesday, February 07, 2012

02/07/12 - His rules

Exodus 20-22:15

Wow! That is a lot of rules. And these don't even contain the ones man added to them. And how many of them I have/will break.

Right off the bat - Exodus 20:3 "No other gods, only me."

Many, many times I have broken it. Each and every moment is a constant fight not to break this one. Through my study of His Word, I have come to the conclusion there are only two gods in this life - Him - the great "I AM" or me - self.

My serving of self leads me to the worship of all other things that I put before Him. All the things that will end up separating me from Him when I put self first. I become consumed with pleasing me - not Him. I am my main focus. It is totally about me. And in doing that - life really will fall apart. I am not God - I can not hold it all together. I will/do fail. I am not God.

I am so thankful though that He knows my heart better then even I do. That He knows it yearns to please Him. That He knows I am a woman after His own heart. How thankful I am that the Holy Spirit interceeds for me - speaks for me - conveys for me when "self" gets in the way.

And I know that when He is my only God - life is right. Even when I have to endure the "fall out" of sin - life is right. It may not make sense at times, but He is in control. He is the one who holds it all together. All of it, not just my little world. He will not fail - He is I AM.

I will never stop being thankful that I live on this side of Christ. I am so thankful that He is the ultimate sacrifice. No other is needed. I am so thankful to be living under His grace and mercy. No animal sacrifice could do that. I am so thankful for the forgiveness that He has given me for past sins and those I will commit. For I will - I am human. Only He was perfect, without sin. Only He could be my ultimate sacrifice.

As I read the punishment for breaking these rules, I came away thinking that there would be so much less crime if we had of stuck to His punishments! And again, I am so thankful that I live on this side of Christ. There had to be a great amount of fear as they lived each day that they would break a rule. I am so blessed that because of Christ I am able to crawl up into my Abba's lap and be that close to Him. Even when I break rules! To live in the security that I am covered. It doesn't give me the feelings of wanting to break the rules because I am free. It motivates me to try and please Him because of His great love.

The rules were set because He knew they were needed. He knew how much we as humans would/do fail. Without rules life would have no order. So even though I can not keep every rule, I do need to learn to live my life accordingly. To have structure in my life. To be more Christlike in my actions.

Time after time it has been proven.

His plans. His way. His rules. They really do work.

Monday, February 06, 2012

02/06/12 - the winning side

Exodus 17:10-13 "Joshua did what Moses ordered in order to fight Amalek. And Moses, Aaron, and Hur went to the top of the hill. It turned out that whenever Moses raised his hands, Israel was winning, but whenever he lowered his hands, Amalek was winning. But Moses' hands got tired. So they got a stone and set it under him. He sat on it and Aaron and Hur held up his hands, one on each side. So his hands remained steady until the sun went down. Joshua defeated Amalek and its army in battle."

We are in a spiritual battle just as real as the physical one the Israelites were fighting. And we can not do it alone. We must surround ourselves with His army - His family. For we will tire out as Moses did. We will need someone to hold us up. The battle doesn't stop when we grow weary. This is when satan attacks the hardest.

God is our "stone". Christ is our "stone". The Holy Spirit is our "stone". His Word is our "stone". The "stone" we base ourselves on. His family is who holds us up - cares for us - fights for/with us.

So important to be in His Word, His church family, committed - a part of - not just a "pew sitter". Your Bible has to be carried in your heart - it isn't a "coffee table" book.

Our God gave us His only Son so we may be on the winning side of this spiritual battle. It's our choice how we fight - who we fight with. Another example of how our hands are used - for the army of satan or for Him -

The side that has already won.

Sunday, February 05, 2012

02/05/12 - When I stumble

Exodus 14: 3-4 "Pharaoh will think, 'The Israelites are lost; they're confused. The wilderness has closed in on them.' Then I'll make Pharaoh's heart stubborn again and he'll chase after them. And I'll use Pharaoh and his army to put my Glory on display. Then the Egyptians will realize that I am God."

There are many times when life doesn't make sense. When following God's lead goes against the grain. And during those times, I am sure some persons will look at me and think I am lost. And even I will look at where He is taking me and think the same. It is when I take my focus off of Him - my Shepherd - who is leading me. It is when I look down at my feet, back behind me to where I have come from, the landscape surrounding me - looking everywhere except to Him.

And then I stumble.

It is at those moments the world and satan are waiting for to close in for the kill. How thankful I am that you catch me, don't let me fall. How thankful I am that you take my hand and I look full into your face, as I continue onward with my Shepherd.

My Christ. My Savior. My bestest friend.

"They were totally afraid. They cried out in terror to God." (Exodus 14:10)

The Israelites lost focus again - off of their Shepherd.

"The Israelites walked through the sea on dry ground with the waters a wall to the right and to the left. The Egyptians came after them in full pursuit, every horse and chariot and driver of Pharaoh racing into the middle of the sea. It was now the morning watch." (Exodus 14:22-24)

Ever since I turned to you, grew in you - satan has been in full pursuit. You always provide a way of escape. I am totally surrounded by you on dry, firm ground. Just as when I was baptized, surrounded in water and received the gift of the Holy Spirit who lives within me.

Consumes me.

"God looked down from the Pillar of Fire and Cloud on the Egyptian army and threw them into a panic. He clogged the wheels of their chariots; they were stuck in the mud." (Exodus 14:25)

I had never noticed this before. The same dry ground you provided for the Israelites escape became mud. Just as you do when protecting me. You surround me , and clog up their wheels. How awesome it is walking on your dry, firm ground. Holding your hand - following in your steps. I am so thankful for all you have done/do for me as I journey on to my Promised Home with you.

"If I keep my eyes on God, I won’t trip over my own feet."- (Psalm 25:15)

My Shepherd.

Saturday, February 04, 2012

02/04/12 - The ripples of my hands

Exodus 10:12 "God said to Moses: "Stretch your hand over Egypt and signal the locusts to cover the land"

At times it actually frightens me how much power God gives us in our choices. With just the "stretching out of my hand". The ripple effect for His glory or self? What I do and say, touches so many lives. How I am as a wife, mother, daughter, aunt, cousin, friend, etc. all those roles touch someone or someones.

Throughout scripture God used the hands as a tool - Moses and the locust - Christ breaking the bread - the writing of the Bible - just to name a few of the very many.

Moses was told to "stretch out his hand over Egypt and signal the locust". He was going up against a Pharaoh who had went back on his word time and time again. Moses - did he ever feel, "what is the use - did he ever feel defeated? a fool? Or did he stand firm in God.

When I am up against the "Pharaoh's" of this world, when sin seems so overwhelming, I thank you for the hope I see - the light in the darkness. To stand firm in you - to wave my hand and know the locust - your army - is waiting for the signal to overtake and consume every bit of sin.

Again, I am reminded this is such a temporary home. That when I picture Christ on the cross, His hands spread out - He is stretching them over the land for me - for all - for our souls. And one day - when He returns - I will be lifted up to Him - His hands will envelope me.

But until that day, I must reach out my hands to share Him. To devour the lost who are in this world. To draw them to Him. I must be His disciple.

The power He gives me in my hands. I pray I will use it for His glory at every turn. That my heart will not be stubborn as Pharaoh. That I may be a woman after God's heart.

That "the ripples of my hands" will touch lives for Him - until He comes again.

Friday, February 03, 2012

02/03/12 - The copy-cat

Exodus 9: 34-35 "But when Pharaoh saw that the rain and hail and thunder had stopped, he kept right on sinning, stubborn as ever, both he and his servants. Pharaoh's heart turned rock-hard. He refused to release the Israelites, as God had ordered through Moses."

Throughout all of this reading (Exodus 7:14-9:35), I am confused as to how were the magicians making the Nile into blood if it already was? Bring frogs when there were already frogs? It would have been more impressive if they had of changed things back.

And that is how satan works. he is a copy-cat - the Master of Lies - trying to entice us to his side by copycatting God, His beauty, His way. And underneath satans' false beauty lies his ugliness - sin. he wants us to believe he is as powerful, that he is god. Only when we are in God's Word, in an intimate relationship with God, are we able to see the difference.

How many times when life is going "well" we think we don't need God? When the "storms of life" cease for the moment? I pray my heart will not be hardened. That the hearts that are, you will use me to disciple to. To teach them that you are a God for all times of life. That only in you are the "storms" easier - that the "good weather times" are made great.

That you are an "all weather" God.

Thursday, February 02, 2012

02/02/12 - harsh slave conditions

Exodus 5:22-23 "Moses went back to God and said, "My Master, why are you treating this people so badly? And why did you ever send me? From the moment I came to Pharaoh to speak in your name, things have only gotten worse for this people. And rescue? Does this look like rescue to you?"

So many times when things don't make sense, I begin to question you - your plans - begin to doubt you want the best for me. I begin to listen to satans' or self lies. That you are not a righteous, fair God who loves me. I know, looking back, those times of being on the bottom, were sometimes the result of my choices. Or they were sometimes the place I needed to be in order to rid me of self and rely on you.

Exodus 6:6-8 "Therefore tell the Israelites: "I am God. I will bring you out from under the cruel hard labor of Egypt. I will rescue you from slavery. I will redeem you, intervening with great acts of judgment. I'll take you as my own people and I'll be God to you. You'll know that I am God, your God who brings you out from under the cruel hard labor of Egypt. I'll bring you into the land that I promised to give Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob and give it to you as your own country. I AM God." 9 But when Moses delivered this message to the Israelites, they didn't even hear him—they were that beaten down in spirit by the harsh slave conditions."

How many times do I lose focus and take my eyes off of you. To become so wrapped up in my "harsh slave conditions" that all I focus on is "woe is me". To forget that whatever I am going through, isn't anything compared to what you gave up for me. Or what Christ did for me. So wrapped up in the "harsh slave conditions" that I don't even hear you.

I must remember and believe - You are "I AM". you are in control and you are taking me to my "promised land". This is just a temporary place. Just like my past "harsh slave conditions", at the time I didn't know how I'd ever make it through. And today, some of those times I can't even remember. The ones I do - I am so aware of how you brought me through the fire. How you purified me. How when hitting the bottom - after my pity party - I looked and you were always there with me.

All I have to do is believe - You are God. A true, holy, righteous God - my "Abba Daddy" - who holds me in the palm of His hand.

Even during "harsh slave conditions".

Wednesday, February 01, 2012

02/01/12 - even after miracle after miracle

Exodus 4:1 Moses objected, "They won't trust me. They won't listen to a word I say. They're going to say, 'God? Appear to him? Hardly!'" 2 So God said, "What's that in your hand?" "A staff." 3 "Throw it on the ground." He threw it. It became a snake; Moses jumped back—fast! 4-5 God said to Moses, "Reach out and grab it by the tail." He reached out and grabbed it—and he was holding his staff again. "That's so they will trust that God appeared to you, the God of their fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob." 6 God then said, "Put your hand inside your shirt." He slipped his hand under his shirt, then took it out. His hand had turned leprous, like snow.7 He said, "Put your hand back under your shirt." He did it, then took it back out—as healthy as before. 8-9 "So if they don't trust you and aren't convinced by the first sign, the second sign should do it. But if it doesn't, if even after these two signs they don't trust you and listen to your message, take some water out of the Nile and pour it out on the dry land; the Nile water that you pour out will turn to blood when it hits the ground." 10 Moses raised another objection to God: "Master, please, I don't talk well. I've never been good with words, neither before nor after you spoke to me. I stutter and stammer." 11-12 God said, "And who do you think made the human mouth? And who makes some mute, some deaf, some sighted, some blind? Isn't it I, God? So, get going. I'll be right there with you—with your mouth! I'll be right there to teach you what to say." 13 He said, "Oh, Master, please! Send somebody else."

How often do I, after you give me miracle after miracle, throw out excuses as to why I can't/won't do for you? You gave me the miracle of taking my dead marriage and breathing life into it, of children, your nature. All of my life - how you took my stumbling blocks into hell and changed its' direction to stepping stones to you!

Miracle after miracle. Yet, I still struggle between serving self or serving you. Can not do both.

I think back on my life and see all the moments I did not bring honor to you with my choices. And how living in those choices, I wasted moments to be your disciple. How thankful I am that you have worked your miracles and transformed my life and my heart. How you have filled me with your Word and are helping me to be a disciple for you - even with my short comings.

Thank you for allowing me to see Moses as human - a faltering human at times. For the hope that I too am/will be used for you - also a faltering human.

14 "God said to Moses, "I-AM-WHO-I-AM. Tell the People of Israel, 'I-AM sent me to you.'"This has always been my name, and this is how I always will be known."

My favorite name for you, after "Abba, Daddy", is "I AM". It covers everything. How thankful I am that you are my "I AM".

That you are my miracle worker.