Sunday, November 30, 2014

"Give It Up" - 11/30/14 - 1 Corinthians 5-8

"Isn't there great danger if someone still struggling over this issue, someone who looks up to you as knowledgeable and mature, sees you go into that banquet? The danger is that he will become terribly confused - maybe even to the point of getting mixed up himself in what his conscience tells him is wrong.
Christ gave up His life for that person. Wouldn't you at least be willing to give up going to dinner for him - because, as you say, it doesn't really make any difference? But it does make a difference if you hurt your friend terribly, risking his eternal ruin!
When you hurt your friend, you hurt Christ. A free meal here and there isn't worth it at the cost of even one of these "weak ones." (8:10-12)

I read and wonder what it is I am selfish in giving up in order to help another in their walk.  Is it time?  money?  stuff?  food?  What is it I am loving more than loving His people.

As a believer, many are watching to see you in action.  When in Christ, there is something "different" about us, and it does/should draw attention.  It is being in Christ that makes us stand out from the world.

Do I ever hold on to the things of the world to satisfy my "self", even if it means hindering another ones walk?  I know of one who didn't feel the need to give up drinking in front of an alcoholic, believing it was up to the person to not submit to drink.  It wasn't part of their job to help them overcome. We are all on a different level in our walks, different strengths and weaknesses.  Different because we need each other. 

As I have grown in Christ, I see it is our job to come along side of each other and help the growth.  When helping each other, we are really helping the whole family.  We are living a life that is pleasing to Him.

So I ask you, what is it you are holding onto, satisfying "self", which is hindering the walk of a brother or sister.  Is it really worth it? 


Saturday, November 29, 2014

"What is Your Job?" - 11/29/14 - 1 Corinthians 1-4

"I planted the seed, Apollos watered the plants, but God made you grow.
It's not the one who plants or the one who waters who is at the center of this process but God, who makes things grow.        
Planting and watering are menial servant jobs at minimum wages.        
What makes them worth doing is the God we are serving. You happen to be God's field in which we are working.
Using the gift God gave me as a good architect, I designed blueprints; Apollos is putting up the walls. Let each carpenter who comes on the job take care to build on the foundation!
Remember, there is only one foundation, the one already laid: Jesus Christ." (3:6-11)
When I was quite young, one of my chores was to make sure the watering trough for the pigs was full. It was old, made of cement, with wide edges containing the water.  Edges wide enough I could stand on them, as the water poured in from the well, and spend my time waiting by "preaching" to the pigs.  I can't remember the words I said to them.  I can vaguely remember my arms and hands moving about with passion.  Looking back now, I smile, thinking I probably was quite the spectacle. 
I can't remember how many years I had this desire to preach.  I do know I didn't have any converts or baptisms in the watering trough from my "congregation". 
The silly things we do as children. 
That fire, deep inside of me, died down to an ember within my heart.  At times it almost went out completely, but our ABBA has breathed into my soul and the fire is back.  Raging within me.  Consuming me.  It has taken me years of letting go of "my" way and following His, before I am now confident what my role is in The Kingdom Come.  Content in where and how He is using me. 
As Paul writes, there are many jobs in the building of His Kingdom, and our ABBA is the Contractor.  The one who calls the shots.  Our Savior is whom we build upon.  Our solid foundation.  The Holy Spirit guides us to know what tools He has given us to be used for Him.  His Word equips us with the Wisdom to put these tools to work - planting, harvesting, building. 
Each of us has been given a purpose.  gifts.  talents.  Each of us. 
Me?  I am a Seed planter.  Encourager. 
That's my job in The Kingdom Come.  What is yours?

Friday, November 28, 2014

"Best Bargain Ever" - 11/28/14 - Acts 18:19-28; Acts 19:1-41

"putting fresh heart into the disciples."(18:23)

I love how our ABBA does this to each of His. 

"putting fresh heart into the disciples."

He does it through His Word, His family, His nature.  He does it in so many ways. 

I pray during this beginning of another holiday stampede, you won't miss out on the gift of His fresh heart.  I pray you won't become so focused on what the world proclaims to be the bargain to beat all bargains, you miss out on His.  I pray you will remember and gift to all you know that "He" is the true meaning of not only Christmas, but each and every day.

Only He is able to give us a new start with a fresh heart. 
The Real Deal of a lifetime. 

Thursday, November 27, 2014

"32 Years" - 11/27/14 - IThessalonians 1-5; 2 Thessalonians 1-3

God's amazing grace be with you! God's robust peace!
Every time we think of you, we thank God for you. Day and night you're in our prayers."
(1 Thessalonians 1:1-2)
How differently this day is compared to the 27th of November 32 years ago.
We are together in the kitchen, both in our pj's, working on our contributions towards the Holtschlag feast.  Curt is peeling away the 25-30 pounds of potatoes and I have put my peach pudding into the oven. 
There isn't any amount of makeup able to cover up my wrinkles while Curt doesn't care if his show or not.  My wedding dress hangs in our bedroom on display and I sigh realizing one leg would pretty much fill the space my waist used to.  I wonder why it is gray hairs enhance my husband, while they don't do the same for me.  So not fair.  Instead of just the two of us starting out together on this day, we are surrounded by those who are here, "just because of two people".
Last night as I was praying and thinking about the past 32 years, memories of joy, heartache, good and hard memories, marched through my head, reminders of all the water that has passed under the bridge. 

If I could, would I go back and repeat this day from 32 years ago? 
Curt and I met on June 9th during the week he was back in Quincy packing up and moving to Texas.  After that week, we were together the few weekends he would drive back and a week when I went down to see him.  There were many who speculated I was pregnant to be getting married in only five months.  I wasn't.  There was just something within us that knew we were to be together.
Neither of us walked with The Lord.  It was in becoming pregnant with Adam I finally woke up and realized I needed to have an intimate relationship with our ABBA.  That was the beginning.
We have been and are evidence in how our ABBA uses everything for His Glory.  Today, I am able to look and see myself, Curt, Adam, Nichalas, Amber, and many others in our lives, who have come to know our ABBA directly linked from our being together.  I stand amazed at how He has/is, using us as part of His Kingdom come. 
There have been times of hanging on to each other tightly and times of wanting to let go.  On this day of Thanksgiving, I am so blessed we endured and have made it. 
If I could, would I go back and repeat this day from 32 years ago?
In a heartbeat - YES.
"Every time I think of "my Curt", I thank God for him. Day and night he is in my prayers."

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

"No Games" - 11/26/14 - Acts 17; Acts 18:1-18

"Starting from scratch, He made the entire human race and made the earth hospitable, with plenty of time and space for living so we could seek after God, and not just grope around in the dark but actually find Him.

He doesn't play hide-and-seek with us. He's not remote; He's near.
We live and move in Him, can't get away from Him! One of your poets said it well: 'We're the God-created.' (17:26-28)
We have always played inside/outside games as a family.  It is the norm when together, to spend hours sitting at the table playing a board game or cards.  Sometimes we will drag out the little kid games, Candy Land, Chutes and Ladders, etc. and have a tournament. This past Christmas we played a game we made up years ago, "fart ball".  Most of the lights are off and we are playing "tag/hide n seek" with a little nerf football.  I will always remember the look on Amber's face as we were running through the house away from whomever was "it", throwing this little brown "fart ball" at each other.  Another game we played was where one would hide in the darkened house while together the others counted to 100 in the bathroom.  As the one hidden was discovered, the discoverer would squeeze in beside them, until everyone had found the one who was hiding. 
And each time we played these games in the dark, until they were older, the boys never ventured far from Curt or my side.  They loved playing, but were just a little unsure, scared, to be alone searching in the dark. 
And that is yet, another thing I love about our ABBA. 
As much as I enjoy playing games, there aren't any games being played when it comes to life "in" Him.  There aren't any times I have to wander in the dark away from Him.  
"He doesn't play hide-and-seek with us. He's not remote; He's near.
        We live and move in Him, can't get away from Him!"


Tuesday, November 25, 2014

"Praying" - 11/25/14 - Galatians 4-6

"May what our Master Jesus Christ gives freely - be deeply and personally yours, my friends. Oh, yes!(6:18)


Monday, November 24, 2014

"Not a Wallflower" - 11/24/14 - Galatians 1-3

"If I was "trying to be good," I would be rebuilding the same old barn that I tore down. I would be acting as a charlatan.        
What actually took place is this: I tried keeping rules and working my head off to please God, and it didn't work.

So I quit being a "law man" so that I could be God's man.

Christ's life showed me how, and enabled me to do it. I identified myself completely with Him. Indeed, I have been crucified with Christ.
My ego is no longer central.
It is no longer important that I appear righteous before you or have your good opinion, and I am no longer driven to impress God. Christ lives in me. The life you see me living is not "mine," but it is lived by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.  
I am not going to go back on that. Is it not clear to you that to go back to that old rule-keeping, peer-pleasing religion would be an abandonment of everything personal and free in my relationship with God? I refuse to do that, to repudiate God's grace. If a living relationship with God could come by rule-keeping, then Christ died unnecessarily."(2:18-21)
He is leading me and I am striving to follow. 
Sure, I sometimes find myself doing the fancy dance of "self" - you know the one - two steps back one step forward.  But what a relief to know, my "Instructor" is right there with me - no matter the steps.  Leading me to dance, "The Dance of Eternity", with Him.
I love knowing - to all of life's music - my dance card is full. 

Sunday, November 23, 2014

"You Belong, Come" - 11/23/14 - Acts 15-16

"So outsiders who seek will find, so they'll have a place to come to"(15:17)

There is an old TV show from when I grew up, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer and the Island of Misfit Toys.

It isn't that I sported a huge red-nose that would glow and beep, but felt there was something about me that never "fit in".  No matter where, or with whom, I usually felt like someone on the outside looking in.  Wanting to belong.  To be part of the celebration others seemed to be enjoying.  I am thankful in looking back to see those He did put into my life, for those few and in between times, that gave me a taste of knowing what it meant to be loved and belong.  Those He used to prompt me in continuing to seek for more than a "taste", but a whole meal of Him.

I can remember sitting in the bathroom in front of the open window, the cold winter wind blowing across my face, wishing more than anything I would catch cold and die.  Thinking my wet hair would do the trick.  I remember sitting on a window ledge nine stories up, wanting to slip off the edge, wishing more than anything I would die.  I can remember driving in the night and thinking about not taking the curve, just heading straight, wishing more than anything I could die. 

A misfit.  Feeling so alone.  Feeling like there was not any place I belonged. 

The emotions of shame, guilt, fear, controlled my thinking..  Put upon me by those who said I was always a burden.  Who have affirmed what I always felt, telling me, my love didn't matter to them.  Who caused me to believe for many years, I truly am a misfit.

Thankfully, our ABBA had other plans for me than an early death.  Today, my life is full and I have realized those that treated me as a "misfit" were correct.  I have been and always will be a "misfit". 

A misfit in the world. 

But I am not, nor have I ever been, nor will I ever be - a misfit in my ABBA's heart. 

I love that He has surrounded me with the "misfits" of this world.  That my life is full of love from and for them.  Never have I experienced such joy and peace, such sense of fulfillment and belonging, as I do with my family of "misfits".  My heart feels full to bursting when looking across a room and seeing a "misfit' sibling, the look, the smile we share - knowing without doubt - we are His "misfits".

"Misfits" who are no longer "outsiders" looking in. 

And that is more than okay. 

"He led them out of the jail and asked, "Sirs, what do I have to do to be saved, to really live?"         They said, "Put your entire trust in The Master Jesus. Then you'll live as you were meant to live - and everyone in your house included!"        
They went on to spell out in detail the story of The Master - the entire family got in on this part.
They never did get to bed that night.
The jailer made them feel at home, dressed their wounds, and then - he couldn't wait till morning! - was baptized, he and everyone in his family.        
There in his home, he had food set out for a festive meal.
It was a night to remember: He and his entire family had put their trust in God; everyone in the house was in on the celebration."(16:30-34)

He hears, He sees all "outsiders".  all "misfits" calling and seeking "a place to come to".

Please listen to this - one of my favorite songs.

"Came To My Rescue"Falling on my knees in worship
Giving all I am to seek your face
Lord all I am is yours

My whole life
I place in your hands
God of Mercy
Humbled I bow down
In your presence at your throne

I called you answered
And you came to my rescue and I
I wanna be where you are

My whole life
I place in your hands
God of Mercy
Humbled I bow down
In your presence at your throne

I called you answered
And you came to my rescue and I
I wanna be where you are
In my life be lifted high
In our world be lifted high
In our love be lifted high

I called you answered
And you came to my rescue and I
I wanna be where you are

Saturday, November 22, 2014

"Ripples of Praying" - 11/22/14 - James 1-5

"Make this your common practice: Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you can live together whole and healed. The prayer of a person living right with God is something powerful to be reckoned with.(5:16)

The prayers lifting Nichalas/Amber up yesterday, during his surgery, did more than grant a successful surgery.  They also touched my heart and opened my eyes to see where I need to grow.  And to let go.

The mom in me wanted nothing more than to be there with them.  Not that I have the medical expertise to add to the situation.  Not that I have super powers to prevent anything "bad" from happening.  Not that I could take his place.  I just wanted to be there. 

To see his face, hear his voice.  hug. To be with Amber in the waiting area and help ease her fears and concerns.  To protect them.


Prayers for Nichalas/Amber opened my eyes to the fact that in my wanting to protect them, it hinders them from growing.  It gets in the way of "their" moments.  "their" trials.  "their" tribulations.  And even, "their' celebrations. 

Prayers reminded me (again), our children are no longer children. 

And they aren't, nor have they ever, been mine.

"The prayer of a person living right with God is something powerful to be reckoned with."

Thank you for praying.  You who are "living right with God".  Because of your prayers, your living by His standards, I am being molded into what He designed me to be.  He is removing the garments that aren't His, which I have put upon myself.   

I stand amazed at how praying works.  At how it touches everyone, not just one. 

Friday, November 21, 2014

"Hard Part of The Harvest" - 11/21/14 - Acts 13-14

"putting muscle and sinew in the lives of the disciples, urging them to stick with what they had begun to believe and not quit, making it clear to them that it wouldn't be easy: "Anyone signing up for The Kingdom of God has to go through plenty of hard times."(14:22)

The "mommy" in me is causing my heart to be in my throat, tears threatening to overflow as I bat my eyes, trying to keep them contained. 

In less than an hour, Nichalas will be undergoing hernia surgery.  In Phoenix, AZ.

My prayer time this morning began focused on Nichalas/Amber and then ABBA turned it around to me. 

I know, without doubt, ABBA is using both Nichalas and Amber as part of His Kingdom Come where they are planted.  Both of them are mighty warriors and each day many young lives are being touched by ABBA through their jobs as teachers.  These young lives are then touching their families and friends.  A perfect example of  how Paul's teachings on "one-by-one" harvesting works.  Both of their hearts are sold out for ABBA and when looking out into the world, they see the lost.  They see the lost and react, wanting nothing more than to introduce them to Jesus Christ. 

"following orders, doing what God commanded when He said, I've set you up as light to all nations. You'll proclaim salvation to the four winds and seven seas!"(13:47)

The hard part of this is the "mommy" in me is selfish.  ABBA has brought Adam back home and now working with us.  And although I am so grateful for that, I want more.  I want, no I desire, to share life with Nichalas/Amber on a more frequent basis than one or two visits a year.  And even though I am thankful, so thankful, for cell phones, Skype, I desire face to face time with them.  When the guys moved out, I had to give over to ABBA every morning my fear of "something" happening to them.  I had to give over my selfishness.  I know, without doubt, if "something" did happen, they would be face to face with ABBA, for eternity.  So it is nothing more than selfishness to want them to be here.  It is hard to grasp Heaven is better than the love here with our children. 

This morning, ABBA gave my heart another pull.  When I am loving them this selfishly, I am loving them more than Him.  I am also putting a burden on them to fill a void.  To give me worth.  These are only things our ABBA is equipped to do. 

Years ago, I gave over our sons to ABBA.  Thankfully, ABBA is bigger than all of my mistakes and our sons are now His Warriors.  His Warriors, who He is sending out to harvest this world.  Where I know they need to be for His work.  Growing up from little boys to young men of God.  My growing up to let go and let God. 

That is the hard part for the "mommy" in me.

He told them, "The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Ask The Lord of The Harvest, therefore, to send out workers into His Harvest field.(Luke 10:2)      

Thursday, November 20, 2014

"What Kind of Words" - 11/20/14 - Acts 11-12

"He'll tell you something that will save your life - in fact, you and everyone you care for."(11:14)

There are times when I sin in my words and the taste in my mouth is sour.  There is a place in the pit of my stomach turning over in such disgust, I want to vomit.  There is a blanket I want to put upon myself and hide away under it.  It is called shame. 

These are the times in which I find myself "flapping" my mouth.  Venting, gossiping, tearing down, whining, complaining, wallowing in self-pity.  There are times when my body language is speaking the same language just as loudly as the words flowing from my mouth. 

I walk away from these times and guilt sets in.  I know I have not left with words that will "save lives".  I have been walking on the "tear down" path.

We as humans, for some reason, find it easier to believe the bad over the good.  Studies show it takes a billion, zillion good comments to cancel out one bad comment from our head.  And even then doubt still sneaks in and we will often pick up that one bad and start the cycle of "tear down" all over - again. 

Perhaps that is why it is so hard to take the Word of Jesus for what it is - Pure, Holy, 100% Truth.  Maybe it seems too easy that He is The only Way to our ABBA. 

Last night in group, a question was read and continues to go through my mind.  "No matter what my circumstances are, do I feel like I have everything I need to live my best life for God?"

I realized, it isn't that I don't feel or believe I have everything I need to live my best life for God - it is that I too many times choose not to utilize what He has given me.  Too many times I choose not to take the escape He promises me for every single temptation that will come my way.  I choose me over Him. 

This is where satan loves to jump into the "tear down" party and have us believe we haven't a chance.  This is where satan and self join together to sing the chorus of  "you are a loser".   This is where the burden of shame will keep us. 

But, THIS is when The Holy Spirit really starts to show off His Power. 

I could continue to stay covered up in shame, but His Word tells me I am covered instead in His Grace and Mercy.  His Word tells me I am His Beloved.  Fearfully and Wonderfully made.  His Word tells me He loved me so much, He gave His only beloved Son to die - for me.  for my sins. 

So, I stand up again - in Him.  I let the blanket of shame fall to the ground, I rinse my mouth out, consume His Words, and focus on my ABBA and His Truth. 

I pray I am, more often than not, leaving behind words to give others hope and Truth after they have chosen to serve "self" and not Him.   To let them know they don't have to live in shame apart from ABBA, by sharing His Words with them.   

His Word tells me, "something that will save my life - in fact, yours and everyone you care for."

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

"Fairly Exploding What" - 11/19/14 - Acts 9-10

"Peter fairly exploded with His good news: "It's God's own truth, nothing could be plainer: God plays no favorites!  It makes no difference who you are or where you're from - if you want God and are ready to do as He says, the door is open. The Message He sent to the children of Israel - that through Jesus Christ everything is being put together again - well, He's doing it everywhere, among everyone.(10:34-36)

Landing that first "real" job.  Becoming engaged.  Expecting a child.  Having children.  Children achieving.  Buying a home.  Travels.  Events.  Enduring the weather.  Accomplishments.  Sacrifices.  Good deeds.  Life experiences. 

Just a few things myself and others "fairly explode" when sharing.

How about God and the plan He laid out so we can be with Him?  How often are we as Peter?

"Peter fairly exploded with His good news".


Tuesday, November 18, 2014

"Preaching Jesus" - 11/18/14 - Acts 7-8

"Philip grabbed his chance. Using this passage as his text, he preached Jesus to him."(8:35)

Bright and early this am, Curt and I headed out for our combined doctor visit.  We are getting ready for a "double date" - the colonoscopy!  I was laughing about how when persons are first dating, just married, this isn't a "date" you think about being on. 

Curt is going for his second time to make sure he is doing okay.  His dad died from colon cancer a number of years ago, so it is in his genes.   There were three polyps discovered the last time, if hadn't of been removed, would have turned into cancer.  I am going for my first time as part of the ongoing testing to find out what is causing the symptoms I am having. 

Today was needed to get a referral for the actual "event".  Afterwards, we hit Wal-Mart to pick up a few groceries before heading back home.

I don't enjoy going to the doctor or shopping.  

It would have been so easy to get aggravated to be spending my day in a way I would rather not.  I could also have easily let my mind be overtaken by the "what if fears".  I didn't.  I just basically was going through the motions, focusing on getting home.

Thankfully, we went to Wal-Mart.  

He opened my eyes through our cashier.  An older woman, whose beautiful smile welcomed us at her checkout line.  Before I knew it, we were both talking about our Jesus.  Nothing personal was exchanged, just Him.  She was "preaching Jesus" in her check out lane just by being.  He was shinning brightly through her. 

I walked out to our car, my heart lifted up.  It wasn't a chance encounter - she was my "Philip" for the day.   

"Philip grabbed his chance. Using this passage as his text, he preached Jesus to him."(8:35)

I have been wondering since, do I grab every chance?  Do I "preach Jesus" just in the way I am living?  Am I being "Philip" to all He puts in my path? 

Her last words to me keep going through my mind, "If I don't see you again here, I'll be seeing you one day there - with Him." 

"Preaching Jesus".  A wonderful way to live life. 

Monday, November 17, 2014

"Upon Us" - 11/17/14 - Acts 4-6

"As all those who sat on the High Council looked at Stephen, they found they couldn't take their eyes off him - his face was like the face of an angel!(6:15)

Do you remember what you think upon seeing their faces? 
These "angels" of God.

These "angels" whose beauty from within radiates outwardly.   Is it impossible to tear your eyes off of them?  Do you recognize He is giving you a glimpse of His wonderment and awe, face to face? 
Many such "angels" come to my mind and my heart instantly smiles.  How much I delight in sharing life with them.  Growing from their example.  Striving to be more like ABBA because of their witness. 

It isn't the way ABBA arranged their features or how artfully they have put on makeup, worn a color to match their complexion and eyes.  It is because ABBA resides completely in their hearts that they have "the face of an angel". 

I see it in the little faces of young ones.  I see it in those the world has deemed "abnormal" because of mental or physical handicaps.  It is the innocence, the trust, the delighting of life that isn't tainted or completely covered up by sins of self or the world. 

I see it in the faces of couples, parents, families, looking at those their hearts are sold out to.  In the gentleness of their embraces, nurturing, building up, guiding, strengthening each other. In the glances they share, secrets only they know betwixt each other, their special bonds to one another. 

I see it beneath the wrinkles of those whose skin has aged throughout their years.  In their work worn, gnarled hands, clasped together in prayer.  In the callouses on their knees from years of kneeling before their ABBA. In the twinkle coming from the depths of their eyes hidden behind thick lens.  I see it as they clutch His Word, pages worn from years of reading, to their whole beings, completely merged into their hearts, minds, soul. 

I see His beauty in the faces of His many angels and He takes my breath away.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

"Chosen - Each One - By Name" - 11/16/14 - Acts 1-3

the ones He had chosen through The Holy Spirit(1:2)

Incredibly, after all I have put into my mouth during lunch, my heart is fuller than my stomach.

The past few hours have been spent in the sharing of a meal and fellowship with my sisters, "His Beloved".  Our connection, our bond, our center in our relationship is our ABBA.  Our Christ.  The Holy Spirit.  His Word.  The Blood bond of our Savior.

I want nothing more than to be used by ABBA.  To be His vessel.  To introduce others to Him.  To grow their relationship in Him.  To celebrate life with my siblings. 

It was five years ago that Curt and I prayed about beginning a Bible Study group in our home.  Our ABBA gave to us ones He had chosen to ask and the building of "ABBA's Family" began.  In that time the original group "multiplied" into another and we added more, names The Holy Spirit gave to us to ask. 

This past year, ABBA began opening my eyes to see there are many women who need to see themselves as He does.  His Masterpiece.  Again, after praying I was given names of women to invite on this journey.  We have been meeting every other week and growing stronger in our walk and in believing His Truths.  That each of us are fearfully and wonderfully made.  His name He has given me for us is, "His Beloved". 

There are some in these groups we started out knowing each other fairly well and others just a bit.  Today, we share a strong love and have built up a complete trust and loyalty between each other.  We share not only our hearts, but also our souls.  We build and hold each other up.

The only reason these groups work is because of our ABBA.  He has chosen each one of us to be a part of each others lives.  I love that we aren't as a clique, but desire for others to come along with us.  Desire for others to know and belong to His Family. 

I am breathless in how our ABBA knew the mix He was putting together would grow so strong.  I watch in wonderment as He uses us for His Glory.  I am so thankful He knew and knows, I need these persons in my life.  How blessed my life is to be part of this "mix". 

"You, O God, know every one of us inside and out.(1:24)

Saturday, November 15, 2014

"Windows to the Soul" - 11/15/14 - Luke 24; John 20-21

saw Jesus standing there. But she didn't recognize Him.(John 20:14)

The only two persons we knew in the room were the host and his father.  We sat enjoying the food and getting to know others in the casual atmosphere.  I was thankful it wasn't a formal sit down meal, just soups, finger foods, set out on a table and serving yourself.  I was learning a lot about the persons, just by listening to the words flowing about me. 

It wasn't that anyone was bragging in their conversations.  They were just discussing their day to day lives, making plans for future adventures, a little bit of business here and there, and it became obvious very quickly we were surrounded by huge sums of money.   For the first time ever, instead of feeling intimidated, I was enjoying just sitting and wondering why ABBA had me planted in this room of older, very well off,  strangers.  Totally out of my comfort zone to say the least!

ABBA opened my eyes to see them through His.  He opened my ears to hear them through His ears.  Instead of intimidated, I felt sorrowful.  They have so much worldly and none of Him.  A dear woman sat and opened up to me how her son, his wife, their two kids, see her on her once a year visit to their home in California.  They both are in high level positions in major corporations and run a very busy life.  She shared that money is all they care about and wiped away tears from her eyes. 

Her eyes.  There was so much sadness coming from the depths of them with the tears.   

My eyes kept coming back to our host while he was cooking in the kitchen.  He is in stage four of a cancer and is basically a genie pig with the medications, procedures.  So far, the cancer isn't spreading, nor is it shrinking.  The glass he had close by was never empty.  I can only imagine the liquor isn't helping the fight against these killer cells within him.  While watching him, I could see death is in the air about him.  His coloring, the puffiness.  But it was his eyes.  The eyes of his father, who I would see looking at him too. 

There was the fear.  the sorrow.  There wasn't any hope. 

Another gentleman extended an invitation for Curt to join in his every Wednesday night poker game, he has been hosting for the past 10 years.  He shared about what it cost to play, the food spread he provided for $10, how he had built a poker room onto his machine shed.  His eyes were sparkling, his body language was alive.  You could see his passion for this weekly event.  But then, his eyes would go dark as the excitement drained away from him. 

There was such an emptiness deep down within his eyes.

And my Curt.  In response to the invitation, began to share with this gentleman why Wednesday night can't work for him.  He shared with him for the past five years we have held a Bible Study in our home.  His eyes were alive as he shared the bonding that has come about with these people, we now call family.  I loved watching his hands move about as words tumbled out of his mouth.  My Curt, the man of few words, was sharing his heart. 

His eyes.  Alive with the Light of our Lord. 

And the man, his whole demeanor changed.  He shut down and turned ever so slightly away from us.  He became focused on the card game that had started up beside us and called out, "Deal me in".

In that moment, while lifting up a prayer of thanksgiving to be married to a man of God and not of money,  I realized why ABBA had us planted there.  In that room.  At that time.

 "saw Jesus standing there. But she didn't recognize Him."

We, all who are His Warriors, is whom He is seen through, standing there amongst those who "see" Him not.

My eyes.  Sorrowful for those whom we encountered. 
My eyes.  Filled with hope that they too, will "see and recognize" our Savior. 

"Eye contact:  how souls catch on fire for Him."          

Friday, November 14, 2014

"Up Close and Personal" - 11/14/14 - Matthew 28; Mark 16

"Tell His disciples and Peter"(Mark 16:7)

I remember cutting across the field to go to church when I was young.  By the time I hit the middle, the ground had become mud, clinging to my tennis shoes, making it almost impossible to lift my foot for another step.  I can remember the embarrassment and shame I felt after my mom sent me back home to change my shoes - by way of the road.  I hadn't realized the field would be that wet as the edges were dry and didn't want to go back to face the people who had seen my error.   

But, you know what I love most about our ABBA?  Is how He knows, really knows, from the top of our head to the tips of our toes - knows each and every one of us. 

Even if we choose to not know Him.  To go our own route. 

It isn't a slip of the tongue that Jesus mentioned Peter by name with the disciples.  It isn't that Peter was extra special.  In different scriptures John was called "the one Jesus loved".  As we all are.  We are all "the one Jesus loves".  The Cross was proof of that.

And just as He loves each of us, He also knows when we need encouragement, affirmation.  He knows when we are beating ourselves up and need to know the gift of forgiveness.

I have been in the shoes of Peter.  Denying that I knew Christ was a way I lived many years of my life.  I was living in and for the world, even though I grew up hearing what He had done for me.  I never accepted His gift of "Him" for myself.  I never took it personal. 

In the shoes of shame, doubt, regret, Peter was blinded to the fact that Christ would still want to have Him in His arms again.  How often do we put on those same shoes?  These shoes, so caked in "mud", we are weighed down and feel we aren't going to make it.  How often do we believe the lies over His unconditional, mind blowing, full out, LOVE? 

That is why He knows each of us by name.  That is why we are the most important part of His creation.  That is why He calls out to us continually. 

He wants nothing more than to be up close and personal.  With each one of us.

Take off those shoes and run as fast as you can towards Him.  He is calling out your name. 

Thursday, November 13, 2014

"Transformation" - 11/13/14 - Luke 23, John 18-19

"When they got to Jesus, they saw that He was already dead, so they didn’t break His legs.
  One of the soldiers stabbed Him in the side with his spear. Blood and water gushed out."
(John 19:34)

Even in death, they still continued to torture His body. 

Each year, when I know I am coming to the day of reading of His Crucifixion, I cringe inside.  I wrestle with guilt, shame, being uncomfortable.  It is because I know, my sins, are part of the reason He was Crucified. 

Today though, while I was praying before reading, to hear what He wanted me to hear, I felt Him transform my heart. 

Christ didn't go to the cross as an act of being able to hold the Crucifixion over my head.  He didn't do it as a "trump card", forcing me to do as He bid. 

He was Crucified because of LOVE.

No other reason. 

It was the only way for me, and others, to be with ABBA. 

He willingly went to the Cross because He was doing what His ABBA wanted Him to do.

To be the ultimate sacrifice for sin.

I pray I will never take His Words recording His ultimate sacrifice for granted.  I pray when I recognize where ABBA had to turn His back on my Savior, His Son, my heart will continue to weep.  As a mother, I can only imagine the pain ABBA and Christ were going through. 


He wants me to lay down at The Cross my sins. 

He didn't die so I continually carry them with me, a constant reminder of what He put to Death.  His Arms were stretched out wide, accepting me, as I was and am, when I fell to my knees before Him.  His blood ran down over me, as I bowed before Him, cleansing me, purifying me, making me Holy and Pure. 

It is my choice to lay down my sins, open my arms wide, and receive Him into my heart, my life, my soul - my all.  It is my choice to take the escapes He provides when sin presents itself in my path. 

It is my choice to accept His gift of LOVE and with each step, become more and more like Him.  To live and love as He has and does.  To accept His gift of grace, mercy, and forgiveness. 

It is my choice to not continually torture Him.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

"The Final Sacrifice - for you" - 11/12/14 - Matthew 27, Mark 15

The only reason our Savior left His ABBA?  for us. 

"But he had Jesus whipped, and then handed over for crucifixion.
The soldiers assigned to the governor took Jesus into the governor's palace and got the entire brigade together for some fun.
They stripped Him and dressed Him in a red toga.                
They plaited a crown from branches of a thorn bush and set it on His head.
They put a stick in His right hand for a scepter.
Then they knelt before Him in mocking reverence: "Bravo, King of the Jews!" they said. "Bravo!"        
Then they spit on Him
and hit Him on the head with the stick.
When they had had their fun, they took off the toga and put His own clothes back on Him. Then they proceeded out to the crucifixion.        
Along the way they came on a man from Cyrene named Simon and made him carry Jesus' cross.    
Arriving at Golgotha, the place they call "Skull Hill," they offered Him a mild painkiller (a mixture of wine and myrrh), but when He tasted it He wouldn't drink it.        
After they had finished nailing Him to the cross and were waiting for Him to die, they whiled away the time by throwing dice for His clothes.  Above His head they had posted the criminal charge against Him: THIS IS JESUS, THE KING OF THE JEWS.   Along with Him, they also crucified two criminals, one to His right, the other to His left.               
People passing along the road jeered, shaking their heads in mock lament:  "You bragged that You could tear down the Temple and then rebuild it in three days - so show us Your stuff! Save Yourself! If You're really God's Son, come down from that cross!"                
The high priests, along with the religion scholars and leaders, were right there mixing it up with the rest of them, having a great time poking fun at Him:  "He saved others - He can't save Himself! King of Israel, is He? Then let Him get down from that cross. We'll all become believers then!  He was so sure of God - well, let Him rescue His 'Son' now - if He wants Him! He did claim to be God's Son, didn't He?"         
Even the two criminals crucified next to Him joined in the mockery.                
From noon to three, the whole earth was dark.        
Around mid-afternoon Jesus groaned out of the depths, crying loudly, "Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani?" which means, "My God, my God, why have You abandoned Me?"
Some bystanders who heard Him said, "He's calling for Elijah."        
One of them ran and got a sponge soaked in sour wine and lifted it on a stick so He could drink.         The others joked, "Don't be in such a hurry. Let's see if Elijah comes and saves Him."        
But Jesus, again crying out loudly, breathed His last.
At that moment, the Temple curtain was ripped in two, top to bottom."(Matthew 27:26-51)
I pray as you read these words they hit home in your heart.  Our Savior was put upon The Cross as the ultimate sacrifice for all of our sins.  His purpose was to remove the Temple Curtain, which separated us from our ABBA, so we may have an intimate relationship with Him.  The Creator of all.  ABBA. He wants us to be with Him. 
 "He was so sure of God - well, let Him rescue His 'Son' now - if He wants Him!"(43)
I can only imagine the restraint  our ABBA had to not reach down and remove His precious, pure and Holy Son from this death.  From the torture of being separated from each other. 
His restraint because of His great Love for you.  for me.  for all. 
This isn't a story.  It isn't a myth.  This happened.  Recorded in His Word and numerous other accounts, by persons who were eye witnesses. 
Jesus.  After our own hearts.  I pray you have given Him yours.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

"At Home in Him" - 11/11/14 - John 14-17

"I've loved you the way My Father has loved Me. Make yourselves at home in My Love.(15:9)

Darkness had surrounded our home as we sat around our small table last night, empty plates pushed back, elbows on the table, leaning in towards each other, conversation from the hearts flowed about me.  One of our "kids" had joined us for our evening meal and we were playing "catch up".

Standing at the kitchen counter this past weekend, preparing food, another one of our "kids" walked behind me and opened up the fridge.  Taking out the lunch meats, cheeses, condiments.  Knowing which cabinet to go to for the plate, glass, utensil, bread, in the making of "just a sandwich to tide me over".

Our Adam, living here these past months, saving money, buying his first home, gutting, renovating, preparing to move in.  Nichalas and Amber, when back, staying in "their" room. 

Most every Wednesday night and one night every other week, His family settles in and we study His Word. 

This place.  He has taken it and is using it for others to feel at home in.  Even when persons aren't here, the memories of voices continue to fill it.  How many treasures I have stored up in my heart from the persons He has brought within these walls. 

And almost always, each one feels completely "at home". 

It is a place where one is able to be themselves, accepted and loved unconditionally.  He uses us to encourage, hold accountable, grow, and listen to many who walk through the doors. 

And He has given me this gift when I go before Him.

No matter where I am, what I am doing, I always feel "at home".  I know, without doubt, I am able to crawl up into His lap at any moment and He is always eager to receive me.  I know, without doubt, He desires to be with me. 

He desires this from all of us.

He desires, with everything He is, for each of us to feel completely "at home" with Him.  He wants us to cast aside all pretense, all fear, all doubt, and "be" with Him. 

I know this, without doubt, because He gave up His only Begotten Son, so I can be "at home" in Him. 

Such a beautiful message from our ABBA -

"Make yourselves at home in My Love".

Monday, November 10, 2014

"When I am Judas" - 11/10/14 - Luke 22, John 13

"Judas, with the piece of bread, left. It was night."(John 13:30)

The last thing that Christ gave him, a piece of bread.  I imagine the gentleness, love that Christ had as He handed it to Judas.  Telling Him, "“What you must do,” said Jesus, “do. Do it and get it over with.”(27).  How just before this He dipped it into the wine which represented His blood.....

I wonder what Judas did with this last gift.  Did he fling it away from him in disgust, anger, fear, as soon as he was outside?  Or did he carry it in his hand, forgotten, in his haste to betray Christ.  Stuffing it into his pocket and finding it later - wadded up, dried or moldy.  Did it bring to mind Christ face, His hand as He handed him this last gift. 

My heart breaks when I read - "left.  It was night." 

So often after a time of communion with Him, eating the bread and drinking the juice that represents His body and blood, I too have "left".  I go from day to night in my thoughts or actions - sometimes both.  I know that satan cannot enter into me, as I am full of the Holy Spirit being in His covenant, but still I sin.  I share in communion with Him, leaning upon His breast as His favorite disciple did, and then "left" is my choice.  I so hate that about myself.  I so know that I cause deep grief and pain to His heart in some of my choices.  I so know that sometimes I reach into my pocket and find His gift wadded up.....and am reminded.  

I see His face, His hands, look into His eyes as He is on the cross.  I see His overwhelming love and am driven to tears.  I feel that love wash over me - and my heart falls into repentance - again.  I feel His light change my night to day.  And again I am in communion with Him.  I praise Him so much for His grace and mercy.  For His unconditional love.   

 “You’ve no idea how much I have looked forward to eating this Passover meal with you before I enter my time of suffering. It’s the last one I’ll eat until we all eat it together in the kingdom of God.”(Luke 22:15-16)

How He "looks forward" to being with me in communion -

How He desires I be totally focused on Him. 

Sunday, November 09, 2014

"What a Savior" - 11/09/14 - Matthew 26, Mark 14

Peter remembered what Jesus had said: "Before the rooster crows, you will deny Me three times."
He went out and cried and cried and cried.(Matthew 26:75)

Is Christ this real to you?  When reading these scriptures, do the Words plunge straight into your heart like a knife?  Do you feel a pain that brings tears to your eyes?  Do you recognize the gift of Life Christ has given you through His sacrifice on The Cross?  Do you accept all He has done for you and given your life to Him? 

Or do you deny Him? 

An old hymn came to mind when pondering these questions, "Man of Sorrows". 

Man of Sorrows! what a name
For the Son of God, Who came
Ruined sinners to reclaim.
Hallelujah! What a Savior!
Bearing shame and scoffing rude,
In my place condemned He stood;
Sealed my pardon with His blood.
Hallelujah! What a Savior!
Guilty, vile, and helpless we;
Spotless Lamb of God was He;
Full atonement can it be?
Hallelujah! What a Savior!
Lifted up was He to die;
"It is finished!" was His cry;
Now in heaven exalted high.
Hallelujah! What a Savior!
When He comes, our glorious King,
All His ransomed home to bring,
Then anew His song we'll sing:
Hallelujah! What a Savior!

Hallelujah!  What a Savior!

Our Jesus. 

He doesn't leave us at the point of repentance, when our hearts are breaking, when we have gone "out and cried and cried and cried".

It is then He draws us into Him.  Lifts us up from the pain our betrayal has caused, cleansing us with His grace and mercy.  His Blood making us anew. 

What a Savior!

Saturday, November 08, 2014

"Late" - "11/08/14 - Matthew 25

"So stay alert. You have no idea when He might arrive."(13)

It seems the harder I try, the behinder I become. 

There have been some who tell me, "You will be late for your own funeral". 

May happen.  May not.  At that point and time, I won't care.  (and it really won't be my fault!)

But while I am living, I do care.  I do hate walking in right on the dot.  I do hate walking in behind the bride as she makes her way up the aisle.  I do hate getting there after the lights have been turned down and the previews are finished. 


I don't really know how it happens.   The words of the rabbit from Alice in Wonderland, "I'm late, I'm late, for a very important date" going through my head as I rush about trying to get out the door and on my way.   I most times have my clothes laid out, cards signed and sealed, present bought and wrapped, directions gone over, and still - more often than not - I walk in late.

What I have come to recognize is one of the reasons is, I really enjoy being home.  It comes from being an introvert.  Crowds, noise, hustling and bustling - they really aren't the way I want to spend my time.  But, being home all the time isn't what He has commissioned me to do.

Part of my "staying alert", is to be His vessel in reaching others.  It means I have to have my lamp tended properly.  The oil I use is His Word.  It gives me over and over what I need to be His light for any situation He puts me in. 

Being out of my comfort zone physically drains me to the point where I want nothing more than to be reclined on my couch dressed in my pj's.  I am thankful for the moments He gives me to recoup, but that isn't where He wants me to invest the most of my time. 

He wants me to have and live a servants heart for Him.  for others. 

On time.  Out of my comfort zone. 

"Then The King will say to those on His right, 'Enter, you who are blessed by My Father! Take what's coming to you in this Kingdom. It's been ready for you since the world's foundation.        
And here's why: I was hungry and you fed Me, I was thirsty and you gave Me a drink, I was homeless and you gave Me a room, I was shivering and you gave Me clothes, I was sick and you stopped to visit, I was in prison and you came to Me.'                
"Then those 'sheep' are going to say, 'Master, what are You talking about? When did we ever see You hungry and feed You, thirsty and give You a drink?  And when did we ever see You sick or in prison and come to You?'                          
 Then The King will say, 'I'm telling the solemn Truth: Whenever you did one of these things to someone overlooked or ignored, that was Me - you did it to Me.'(34-40)

Friday, November 07, 2014

"Hope in His Promises" - 11/07/14 - Matthew 24

His Words of encouragement.  His Promise.  Our hope in Him.
 "Staying with it - that's what God requires. Stay with it to the end. You won't be sorry, and you'll be saved.(13)
 "Following those hard times, Sun will fade out, moon cloud over, Stars fall out of the sky, cosmic powers tremble.   
"Then, The Arrival of The Son of Man! It will fill the skies - no one will miss it. Unready people all over the world, outsiders to the splendor and power, will raise a huge lament as they watch The Son of Man blazing out of Heaven.   
At that same moment, He'll dispatch His angels with a trumpet-blast summons, pulling in God's chosen from the four winds, from pole to pole.(29-31)
We are one day closer! 

Thursday, November 06, 2014

"Impressed" - 11/06/14 - Mark 13

"As He walked away from the Temple, one of His disciples said, "Teacher, look at that stonework! Those buildings!"  Jesus said, "You're impressed by this grandiose architecture? There's not a stone in the whole works that is not going to end up in a heap of rubble."(13:1-2)

When ABBA created me, He gave me a love for art.  For the architecture, not only in buildings, but in His Masterpiece's.  People. 

I am constantly amazed at the beauty He made each one of us to be.  The different colors, textures, expressions, muscle tone.  The way He made the whole of our bodies.  Each part designed to work together.  Each part has its own role.

We are blessed to be living in a small city with such beautiful examples of architecture.  There are often times I will just pull over in amazement, blown away by the craftsmanship put into these buildings, built without the modern day equipment.  So many hands have craved out intricate details which have lasted for many generations.

And one day - all will be just "a heap of rubble".

It would be so easy to get caught up into the grandiose of the world.  This isn't what He has designed us to become "caught up" in.  It is our ABBA and people who are to be what we are to be impressed with.  To invest our time, gifts, talents with and into. 

Even though I marvel at the abilities many are given in design, ABBA is the one who deserves all the credit.  Without His administering the gifts and talents to us, we would not have any ability.  All we have been entrusted with is to be used for His glory, not our own.

Which brings to my mind the most precious treasure He entrusts us with.  People.

We have/are being saturated with surrogate grandbabies!  Many of our "kids" are having ones of their own and sharing them with us.  These little bundles of joy are delighting us so.  I sit and marvel at our ABBA's design of beauty in each and every one of them.  What a miracle they - we - all are.  All of us, created the same way. 

He has blessed us in sharing life with so many, I pray I am a vessel for Him to use in bringing them closer to ABBA.  These are the treasures I am so "impressed" with.  People.

All people.           

Wednesday, November 05, 2014

"Beyond the Attack" - 11/05/14 - Matthew 23, Luke 20-21

"There's no telling who will hate you because of Me.   Even so, every detail of your body and soul - even the hairs of your head! - is in My care; nothing of you will be lost. Staying with it - that's what is required. Stay with it to the end. You won't be sorry; you'll be saved. (Luke 21:17-19)

Hate.    Such a powerful emotion. 

I have strongly disliked the way a person has acted, but to actually hate someone is something I haven't felt towards another.  There have been those I have chosen to set boundaries up in my life, but I don't want them dead or worse.  I have never felt towards anyone as Cain did towards Abel.  Even when someone has hurt one I love.  There were moments when I have wanted to bash someone's face in, but not hard enough to kill them. 

On the flip side, there are those who have a strong dislike and perhaps hatred towards me.  There have been times I have been attacked and my instant reflex is to become defensive.  There have been times when someone has wanted to destroy me, but as of yet,  not kill me.  These times have caused me to search my heart for my sins and repent, ask for forgiveness.  These attacks have opened my eyes to see sometimes the dislike or hatred is there because of my relationship with Him.  There are some who don't like His Light revealing their darkness and as His, I become a scapegoat. 

It is through His Word that my heart is being transformed. 

He gives us an account in Scriptures of those whose hatred for Christ was driving them to kill Him.  They were plotting, trying to entrap, any which way they could come up with, to be rid of Him. 
Christ knew all of what was in their hearts and spoke angrily of their actions. 

The wonderment of our Savior though, is if you read carefully in the verses today, His anger was because of all those they were hindering or leading astray from Him.  He never took what they did personal.


Even on His way and upon The Cross. 

He looked beyond their actions, into their hearts, and what He saw brought about sorrowfulness, not hatred towards them.  He continually gave to them the opportunity to change their hearts and give up "self" for Him. 

This is the Christlike attitude I pray to achieve.  To love all as He loves.  To not take personal, looking beyond the attacks, into their hearts and pray for them.  To not hear, see, their dislike or hatred towards me, but to see them - standing outside of our ABBA.  Lost.  Angry.  Bitter.  Full of the world.  Full of self. 

To completely accept - no matter what - it isn't my job to protect or defend "me". 
To believe without any doubt whatsoever - He has me covered - "every detail of my body and soul - even the hairs of my head!"

Tuesday, November 04, 2014

"In His Wardrobe" - 11/04/14 - Matthew 22, Mark 12

 "When the king entered and looked over the scene, he spotted a man who wasn't properly dressed.   He said to him, 'Friend, how dare you come in here looking like that!' The man was speechless.   Then the king told his servants, 'Get him out of here - fast. Tie him up and ship him to hell. And make sure he doesn't get back in.'       
"That's what I mean when I say, 'Many get invited; only a few make it.'"(Matthew 22:11-14)
Unless we invest into a relationship with Him that becomes intimate, we'll never know just how much of "living" we are missing out on.  It isn't how we are dressed on the outside that counts, it is what we dress our minds, heart, soul with. 
I am so thankful for the treasures He has rained down upon me throughout my years.  I am so thankful for His Word, opening my everything up to Him, so I am able to recognize, receive, accept His blessings.  Even then, I know I am unaware of much, much more. 
His Word is the mirror I look into, taking off that which doesn't dress me to suit Him.  (To suit Him, not my "self".)  Dressing myself in a royal attire I never dreamed I would be able to obtain, much less fitting me like a glove.  He has made each and every element of my "wardrobe" to fit me perfectly. 
He wants me dressed to the nines. 
He is all about showing off His Masterpiece. 
His Masterpiece being myself.  And you. 
I am readying myself for the most important "date" of my life. 
ABBA has invited all of us to dine, with Him, at His table. 
I pray you are "properly dressed" by Him, as I am so looking forward to celebrating this eternal feast with you! 

Monday, November 03, 2014

"Light or Dark" - 11/03/14 - Mark 11, John 12

"When push came to shove they cared more for human approval than for God's glory.
Jesus summed it all up when He cried out, "Whoever believes in Me, believes not just in Me but in The One who sent Me.
Whoever looks at Me is looking, in fact, at The One who sent Me.
I am Light that has come into the world so that all who believe in Me won't have to stay any longer in the dark.
"If anyone hears what I am saying and doesn't take it seriously, I don't reject him. I didn't come to reject the world;
I came to save the world. But you need to know that whoever puts Me off, refusing to take in what I'm saying, is willfully choosing rejection. The Word, the Word-made-flesh that I have spoken and that I am, that Word and no other is The Last Word.
I'm not making any of this up on my own. The Father who sent Me gave Me orders, told Me what to say and how to say it.
And I know exactly what His command produces: real and eternal life. That's all I have to say. What the Father told Me, I tell you."(John 12:43-50)

Where are you today? 

Are you walking in darkness or His Light?

This is the only reason He came to this earth - so you could be His.  But, He isn't going to force Himself on you. 

It is your free choice. 

Whose are you today?  and for eternity?

Sunday, November 02, 2014

"Coulda Missed" - 11/02/14 - 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 in his grasp, leaving behind 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.  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, bursting with Love from and for Him, awaits one day our "face to face" visit. 

Saturday, November 01, 2014

"Choices" - 11/01/14 - 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? 
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.
There have been times I have wondered which son I would have chosen.  Thankfully, I have never been placed in that spot, but many young parents have been throughout the ages of time.  I have known, without hesitation or doubt, if the choice was myself or them to die, it would be me.  There is a love for my sons, and now daughter-in-law, that is so strong, I would willingly lay down my life if it meant saving theirs.
I know, without hesitation or doubt, if the choice was myself or someone I don't know, who treats me in contempt, who lives only for evil, I would choose them.  How this choice breaks my ABBA's heart.  Slowly, but surely -  He is transforming my heart to love as He loves. 
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 Savior - He did this for each one of us. 
Even those who made the choice not to love Him in return.