Saturday, January 31, 2015

"Out From Under" - 01/31/15 - Exodus 4-6

"Then I will take you for My people, and I will be your God; and you shall know that I am the LORD your God, who brought you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians."(6:7)

When we are under the burdens, it is sometimes hard to focus on anything but that. 
When sometimes, our focus turns away from our ABBA.

I think about the lighthouse.  Standing firm.  Foundation running deep as it withstands the battering of the storm. 

I think about the great ship.  Plowing its way through the storm.  Held together with a wing and a prayer.

I think about the dark horizon.  The black clouds gathering and rushing towards where you stand.  And then to be carried away from you by His great winds. 

Sometimes, we need to stand firm.  plow through.  And sometimes, He allows the storms to pass around us. 

But always.  We need to remember He - The Lord our God - has brought us out from under the burdens.  He has set us - His people -  free. 

In Heaven - our Home - there are no storms.  there aren't any burdens. 

Friday, January 30, 2015

"Stop to Look" - 01/30/15 - Exodus 1-3

God saw that he had stopped to look.(3:4)

 As I studied this passage, He gave me a word picture.  I could see the burning bush on the side of the mountain, tucked a bit out of the way from where Moses was herding the sheep.  The flames had caught his eye, but the most important part of this  passage is, "he had stopped to look". 

And I was immediately hit in my heart, how often do I "stop to look"? 

Stop to look -  and see Him, in His Majesty, placed everywhere about me? 

Stop to look -  and then draw close to "stand on Holy Ground"? 

Stop to look - and quiet my mind, my mouth, so I may hear and take in His Words? 

How often do I miss His "Burning Bush", as I hurry through "my schedule".

ABBA had the burning bush planted in one spot.  He didn't have it leaping about the landscape, trying to stop Moses in his tracks.  I wonder if he would have resorted to this tactic, if Moses had continued on. 

I wonder how many "Burning Bushes" He has put before my steps, because I didn't stop? 

The "Burning Bushes" that are His "Divine Appointments".

I used to get upset because I couldn't cross off the items on "my" to do list because something (or someone) always came up and I had to switch off of the route "I" had planned out for the day.  Because of our line of work, winter is the best time to get caught up on things I had put off during our busy seasons.  Each year, I look forward to going through our home, reorganizing and purging, getting rid of "stuff" that is taking up spaces, not only in our closets, but in my life.  ABBA has become so much of my "I Am", I no longer need "stuff" to fill the voids in my life. 

No longer am I placing my worth in accumulations, no longer am I allowing the "stuff" in life to run my life.  It isn't that our home looks like a total mess, I am just becoming more and more convicted to simplify my life.  He has shown me throughout the years, many times over, life is fleeting.  He is changing my heart to live as though my next breath could be my last and I am striving to get our home, the business, shop, in order, so when my last breath does happen (and it will), Curt, Adam, Nichalas, Amber, and any others He puts into our family, are able to focus on each other - not the stuff. 

So, like Moses, instead of sheep, I am herding "stuff" out the door.  I am cleaning out the dust, creating bare spaces on the shelves, empty drawers, and loving it.  It is so refreshing and comes with the blessing of freedom.

Interruptions come and I have learned they are His Divine Appointments.  I now am excited to see what He has lined up for "our" day.

Yes, I am to be a good steward of our stuff.  But, not to let that become more important than the Burning Bush He has tucked away, or put into the middle of my path.  It motivates me to utilize the times He does give me, to be a better steward for the ridding of stuff. 

But, it isn't just about the physical aspect of my life either.  He places  the "Burning Bush" in my soul, my mind, my heart, as well.  It is so easy to get into my comfort zone, my routine, and easily miss out or even ignore the "Burning Bush".  The "Burning Bush" surrounded by Holy Ground.  The place where He wants me to be barefoot and totally focused on Him.  The place where He is my "I AM". 

The place where I need to live. 

It is only by living in the presence of His Burning Bush, that I am able to become all He has designed me to be.  It is there I have learned His Truth.  Where my heart has been transformed. 

He has filled me with the desire to always stop to look - for His "Burning Bush".

Thursday, January 29, 2015

"In Him" - 01/29/15 - Genesis 48-50

"Then he blessed them: The God before whom walked my fathers Abraham and Isaac, The God who has been my Shepherd all my lifelong to this very day,
The Angel who delivered me from every evil, Bless the boys."(48:15-16)
I never would have imagined what a roller coaster ride of emotions being a mom would be and is. 
I never imagined what it would be like to have a piece of your heart walking on the outside of you.  I never imagined being able to love someone so much it didn't seem possible you would love them even more within the next breath - but you do.  I never imagined the blessings of being a mom would be as wonderful as they are. 
And so blessed am I.
I began praying for our children to grow up into an intimacy with ABBA as soon as I knew they were in my womb.  I also began praying for their future mates at the same time.  My desire for our children and future grandchildren to know, truly know, what intimacy with ABBA is has turned into my passion, for  Him to be the center of their lives.  For them to be filled with Him from the tips of their toes to the top of their heads.  I wanted for them to have what I didn't.  I wanted them to miss out on what it was like to walk apart from ABBA.
I listen as I hear others speak of our Adam leading their Bible study lesson.  I praise our ABBA in hearing how Adam dug into His Word and spoke from his heart.  How his love for ABBA is evident.  How ABBA is using this quiet young man as a strong warrior.  I love to see the working of ABBA about and around those in his life.  ABBA reminds me when thinking about Adam - still waters run deep.
Last night, I sat and listened to our Nichalas sharing about his day.  The students.  Events.  My heart swelled with gladness as the passion came through his words as he told of how ABBA was using him to touch lives, who other than he, don't see Christ anywhere.  I prayed thanks in hearing and knowing our ABBA is using both he and Amber where they are planted.  Knowing there are persons who ABBA needs to use them for His Glory helps ease the selfishness and pain I feel in wanting them to be here, so we can share life day to day.
I praise our ABBA in knowing our grandchildren will be raised up in knowing Him.  I praise Him, knowing He will be using us and future generations to bring others to Him.  I thank Him for surrounding them with His hedge of protection.  I thank Him for hearing and answering my prayers. 
I am blessed in the honor of seeing and enjoying these fruits of my prayers. 
How Awesome is our Lord.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

"Settled In" - 01/28/15 - Genesis 46-47

"Joseph settled his father and brothers in Egypt, made them proud owners of choice land."(47:11)

Wow.  Just Wow. 

After all his brothers had done to him, he settled them on choice land, provided everything for them and then handed over the keys.  They became proud owners.  Not tenants.  Owners.

That is such a fantastic example of forgiveness.  There isn't any record of what their conversations were leading up to this moment, but I assume their was a change in the brothers hearts towards Joseph.  Regardless, Joseph was Christlike in his actions.

I have betrayed Christ over and over.  And Christ - He gave me forgiveness for all my sins - yesterday, today, tomorrow - when I became His.  He didn't have to.  But He did.

His Word, The Holy Spirit, have transformed my heart.  I desire to please and draw near to my ABBA.  Striving to be Christlike in all of my words, actions, and thoughts. 

And still, after all I have done, will do, in my journey - the sins - He has settled me in His Land. 

Not as a tenant, but as an owner. 

Amazing how He loves us isn't it. 

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

"Giving All Up" - 01/27/15 - Genesis 43-45

 "And now, can't you see that if I show up before your servant, my father, without the boy,
this son with whom his life is so bound up,
the moment he realizes the boy is gone, he'll die on the spot".(44:30)
"Don't worry about having to leave things behind; the best in all of Egypt will be yours.'"(45:20)

Whenever I have read this account of the reunion of Joseph and his brothers, I always wondered, "why all the tests".  It finally dawned on me today they were to bring about trust.  to bring about forgiveness.  to bring about faith.

His brothers had never fessed up to their act in getting rid of Joseph and believed what they had done was coming back to haunt them.  Joseph had total faith in his ABBA, knowing all the trials he had went through were so he could be used by God.  He had totally forgiven his brothers.  Now they needed to forgive themselves. 

Jacob's blatant favoritism brought about the treatment and feelings Joseph's brothers held towards him. And when Joseph was gone, that favoritism went to his younger brother Benjamin. He became Jacob's whole life.  

The giving up of Benjamin.

It saved the whole family from a sure death during the famine.

How often do we look at the trials and tribulations in life and wonder why.  become angry.  hold on even tighter to what we love most in life.  love more than God. 

ABBA doesn't allow the trials because He hates.  His Love for us is so great, He wants only the best for us. 

The best for us isn't always what we believe because we are unable to see the whole paradigm.  That is where trust comes in.  To let go and trust ABBA in what He has planned for us.  Forgiving ourselves and others for the times we sin or are sinned against.  To step out in faith without any baggage pulling us down. 

To one day have it all.  Not here on earth, but with Him.  Eternity.  The best is yet to come. 

Monday, January 26, 2015

"Freedom" - 01/26/15 - Genesis 41-42

"Only as king will I be over you."        
So Pharaoh commissioned Joseph: "I'm putting you in charge of the entire country of Egypt."
Then Pharaoh removed his signet ring from his finger and slipped it on Joseph's hand. He outfitted him in robes of the best linen and put a gold chain around his neck."(41:40-42)
What a day Joseph had.  Waking up that morning, after waiting two years in prison for the cupbearer to remember him.  Finally, called before Pharaoh and that night is second in command of the land.
Out of prison.  Freedom.  Living amongst royalty. 
Exactly as Christ has done for us.
If we choose Him. 

Sunday, January 25, 2015

"He Makes Us All Beautiful" - 01/25/15 - Genesis 38-40

"Now Joseph was handsome in form and appearance."(39:6)

Whenever I read this description of one in Scriptures, I wish there was a picture of them.  Looking back through the paintings, photographs of earlier times, it is interesting what one finds as handsome or beautiful has changed throughout the years. 

I love how ABBA has transformed my heart to see those He has made in His image.  I love looking at how He has taken the same "materials" and is able to make an unique masterpiece with each person.  Not one of us is alike.  Not one.

Doesn't that amaze you? 

And nature.  Not one thing or animal is alike.  Not one.

This morning we stood in the kitchen.  Tears had made her eyes red.  She was doing all she could to hold herself together.  Her sons were bouncing off around her.  Emotions running high and low, could be felt in the air.  When I looked at her, I saw ABBA's daughter.  His beautiful, strong daughter.  I saw a mom.  I saw a friend.   And my heart went out to her.  Only able to imagine what struggles she has as a single (not by choice) mom.  Thankful she has her family to help her out, but the main responsibility is hers in raising up of these two boys.  Blessed because she is adamant to be raising them in Christ.  They are the hope of our future.   I saw my sister - beautiful in form and appearance.

We sat in a circle, this family of mine through ABBA.  Laughter, serious conversations.  Joy.  Each week I am blessed in just taking communion of life with them.  with ABBA.  I see my brothers and sisters - beautiful in form and appearance.

There were only four of us this week as we met for our every other week study.  Women ABBA has hand chosen for me to draw near to, to dream, to grow, to be myself.  My sisters who in the lamplight of my living room share His beauty through their smiles. their laughter.  their love.  His beloved - beautiful in form and appearance.

Each week in church I am surrounded by those who I call family.  Those who greet me bight-eyed. with a hug.  a kiss.  conversation.  I stand or sit in worship surrounded by these ones whom He calls His.  My family - beautiful in form and appearance.

This life I have been blessed with to share with my Curt.  Ours sons.  Daughter.  Future daughter-in-law (one day).  Those He has placed into our lives and our hearts - beautiful in form and appearance.

The one thing that everything and everyone has in common, is if we look through His eyes, we are able to see the beauty of Christ. 

We all are - beautiful in form and appearance.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

"No Other" - 01/24/15 - Genesis 35-37

"So Jacob said to his household and to all who were with him, "Put away the foreign gods which are among you, and purify yourselves and change your garments; and let us arise and go up to Bethel, and I will make an altar there to God, who answered me in the day of my distress and has been with me wherever I have gone."  So they gave to Jacob all the foreign gods which they had and the rings which were in their ears, and

Jacob hid them

under the oak which was near Shechem."(35:2-4)

I smiled as I read today's verses regarding the foreign gods, or what I would call idols. 

Whenever I read these verses, I would wonder why Jacob didn't destroy the idols. 

Down deep inside, I knew why.  So he could go back and dig them up.  He wasn't ready to rid them completely from his life. 

Much like I have been and continue to fight the urge to bury instead of destroy. 

There are many things or people we make into an idol or foreign god - mine is food. 

I have used it as a comfort, stuffing god instead of why it was created.  Nourishment for my body. Through this revelation, ABBA is helping me to destroy this idol. 

 I have just weighed myself after six days on the Weighdown lifestyle change. Yes, my scales have dropped 5.3 lbs - which is encouraging - but that isn't the biggest change going on.

 It is my heart.

 Last night I was able to stop eating, continue sitting at the table and visit. I was also praying continually for ABBA to help me in this BIG step, to take away the urge to keep eating (which I could have so easily).

I am not saying this Weighdown will work for every one, but it is for me. I am at the point where I know I am eating not from hunger, but from trying to stuff emotions I don't want to deal with. I am also at the point where I am ready to get His Temple - my body - in shape for His glory.
 Not mine.
 Not the approval or adoration of others.
Ready to be His slave - no more idols.

Friday, January 23, 2015

"Arms Open Wide" - 01/23/15 - Genesis 32-34

"He thought, "I will soften him up with the succession of gifts. Then when he sees me face-to-face, maybe he'll be glad to welcome me." (32:20)

"He led the way and, as he approached his brother, bowed seven times, honoring his brother.        
But Esau ran up and embraced him, held him tight and kissed him. And they both wept.(33:3,4)

Esau - he lost his birthright to Jacob because he was, well.........stupid.  He gave it up for a bowl of lentil stew.  He was then tricked out of the firstborn blessing by his mom, as well as Jacob.   

Jacob then left on the advice of his mom to run away to her home country because it was reported to her, Esau was out for the blood of Jacob.

Rather like a soap opera we can make our lives when not following our ABBA.

It was time for Jacob to return home and I imagine there was more than just a little fear in his steps.  He knew what he had done, on purpose, to his brother.  He didn't know if time apart had made the heart grow fonder. 

Jacob was scared Esau would kill him. 

I love the Chistlike heart we are shown in Esau.  Put into the position where he could have taken care of old business upon meeting Jacob, he instead, "ran up and embraced him, held him tight and kissed him. And they both wept."

Yet another picture of how our Christ accepts us.  Even after we have sinned against Him.  When we have chosen to live life our own way.  Hurting Him.  Denying Him.  Allowing sin to come between us. 

satan wants us to believe we aren't able to be accepted into the arms of our Savior after we have repented in our hearts.  he wants us to believe just "us" isn't enough.  So we pick up doubt and try to "work our way", "buy our way", "bargain our way" into Heaven. 

What freedom there is knowing, we do not have to "soften our Lord up with the succession of gifts. Christ was The Ultimate Gift.  In Christ, we don't ever have to wonder if when He sees us face-to-face, then "maybe" He'll be glad to welcome us." 

He has promised - repent and turn to Him.  He is waiting.  Arms wide open. 

No gifts. Just you.  All of you. 


Thursday, January 22, 2015

"The Next One" - 01/22/15 - Genesis 30-31

"God listened to her and opened her womb.          
She became pregnant and had a son. She said, "God has taken away my humiliation." She named him Joseph (Add), praying,

"May God add yet another son to me." (30:22-25)

Wow!  How often am I like Rebecca. 

Are you.

We pray and pray for God to answer our prayer.  And when He does, we are looking forward to "the next one". 

Reminds me of how persons are at Christmas.  Ripping into a gift, briefly looking it over before grabbing "for the next one". 

How often do we take our many blessings and count them one by one.  How often do we stop and live in the moment.  How often do we drink in and totally savor life.  How often are we totally content with where we are in this present time and place. 

How often are we consumed by "the next one" rather than the "present one".   

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

"Leah" - 01/21/15 - Genesis 27-29

She said, "This time I'll praise God." So she named him Judah."(29:35)

My heart is always saddened when reading the account of Leah.  Known as the one who "had nice eyes, but Rachel, her younger sister, was stunningly beautiful."  Born in a time when women were treated as property and valued only if they could produce sons.  In a time when she didn't have any say so about her life. 

 " Then Jacob said to Laban, "Give me my wife, for my time is completed, that I may go in to her."
Laban gathered all the men of the place and made a feast. 
Now in the evening he took his daughter Leah,
and brought her to him; and Jacob went in to her.   Laban also gave his maid Zilpah to his daughter Leah as a maid.  
25 So it came about in the morning that, behold, it was Leah!
And he said to Laban, "What is this you have done to me? Was it not for Rachel that I served with you? Why then have you deceived me?"(29:21-25)  
There isn't any recording to tell us about Leah's life.  Did she secretly like Jacob?  Or was there another whom she dreamt of spending her life with?  Did she get along with Rebecca or was jealousy, envy a curse between them?  Did she dare cry out in protest when her father came to take her into Jacob's bed?  She had to have known how much Jacob and Rebecca's love was for each other and knew what was to come.  Were there tears running down the side of her face as she saw Jacob's face looking at her in the morning light?  Were her ears ringing from the sound of his voice in anger towards her father over his trickery?  And how did she handle being in the marriage bed after that.  Knowing Jacob was only there in the sense of duty to have sons. 
Three times we read of her delivering sons to Jacob.  With each one came the hope that perhaps, this one would be the one to win his heart to her. 
Her heart.  It could easily became hard and bitter.  Instead she turned to her ABBA. 
Instead of finding fulfillment in her life, she found it in her ABBA. 
Leah.  A woman rejected.  A woman used without regard for her feelings. 
The woman who became the mother of a fourth son.  A son Judah.
The one who is in direct linage to another son.  Our Savior.  Our Christ.  Jesus.
How our ABBA takes the ones who are set apart by the world and instead sets them aside for His Glory. 

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

"Waiting" - 01/20/15 - Genesis 25-26

"Isaac was sixty years old when they were born."(25:26)

The word ABBA has given me today is, "waiting". 

Isaac began praying for Rebecca to become pregnant as soon as they were married.  He was 40 years old at the time.

I wonder what went through his mind during those 20 years.  Seeing his half-brother, Ishmael, with his 12 sons and who knows how many girls.   Ishmael son of Abraham, the son that Hagar the Egyptian, Sarah's maid, bore to Abraham.  Did the tragedy surrounding them taking things into their own hands motivate Isaac to have only one wife. 

To wait upon the Lord's time.

So often we want the instant gratification and do just as Abraham and Sarah did.  Instead of waiting, we "do".  Usually "doing" as we see fit and then end up in a pickle.  I know I have over the years.  Often.  And thankfully, my ABBA is always there to help me out of whatever I have gotten myself into.  There have been times of facing the consequences and times where He rescued me. 

But never - never - has He left me behind in the mess I made.

I am learning to pray and wait. 

Again, ABBA used His word to bring the point home to me.  When picking up my devotional for the day, I had to smile when reading the title - "The Rewards of Waiting".

We have all experienced many times of waiting - in doctors' offices, traffic jams, or checkout lines.  While there, we have nothing to do but wait for our turn.  In God's Kingdom, waiting is defined as an active stillness - active because we are continuing in our present situation, and still because we are focusing our attention on Him for guidance.  A lifestyle of active stillness requires a purposeful and expectant attitude, a patient and determined frame of mind, and a prayerful and obedient heart.

There are rewards for waiting on The Lord.  One involves receiving the super-natural strength needed for godly living.  When we feel overwhelmed, we might be tempted to get out of step with God.  Even though we know He is calling us to keep a steady pace, we may start lagging behind.  At other times, our schedules leave us little time to think.  So we make quick decisions, pushing ahead of Him. In either case, we risk becoming weary and emotionally spent because we are operating in our own strength.  Patiently waiting on God will bring us the physical energy and emotional reserves we need to keep going.

Here are two additional benefits for waiting:  discovering God's will, which is always for our good (Romans 8:28), and gaining spiritual victory in life's trials. 

Our omniscient and omnipotent God is always right on time.  It is we who leave too early or arrive too late.  Pick a situation in which you are tempted to overrule The Lord's perfect timing .  Then submit to Him, realizing the issue is a matter of trust.

Be like Isaac.  Waiting.  God's time.  God's way.   

Monday, January 19, 2015

"What is my Isaac"- 01/19/15 - Genesis 22-24

“On the mountain of God, He sees to it.” (22:14)

Mountain of God. 

To get to there, we have to go through the valley - or a flood. 

Until we die - the journey continues - down through the valleys to the next mountain top.  Noah waited in the ark for 375 days before the next journey to a valley.  Abraham - a lifetime.

I can only imagine what was going through his mind.  How at times he probably wished that his faith wasn't so great.  How at times he wanted to take his Isaac and run back to the valley from which they had come.  To run away from God who he had chosen to obey - no matter the cost.

He had left his comfort zone, sent away his other son,  and now was told to use his remaining son as a sacrifice - all commands from the God he loved.  Looking back over his lifetime of memories as they climbed the mountain - he had to think how does this make sense.

Only God knows the whole paradigm.  We can't - so there will be many, many times in our journey of life that situations do not make sense.  At all.

What does make sense is that God wants us to give up everything to Him.  He wants to be our most loved, most cherished, most everything - our "I AM".  Because that is what is best for us.  Because that's how much He loves us.  Not every mountaintop experience is joyful, but the view enables us to see more than when in a valley.  It brings us closer to Him when we climb upward.  We have to lift our eyes up as we climb.  I am reminded of Lot's wife looking back and turning into a pillar of salt.  I wonder what prevented Abraham from turning back too.  Was it the knowing if he did it would turn his life to salt only instead of a life full of seasonings.  That it would be a life that lead to separation from God.  I don't know.  What I do know is he did exactly as commanded.  Even to the point of raising his knife to kill Isaac.

That. is. faith.

That is putting God first.

This passage of scripture is one of my most favorite because it shows me that God wants me to sacrifice "my Isaac" to Him.  That "my Isaac" is coming between Him and me - even if it is a "good Isaac".  The times when life is overwhelming - "God sees to it!"  Just as He supplied the ram for Abraham - He "sees to it" for me.  Nothing is too big for Him or out of His control.  I also love how this account between God and Abraham holds me accountable. 

What is my Isaac?  What do I need to sacrifice to Him?  To put Him first?  What do I love more than Him? 

What or whom do I need to leave at the foot of The Cross on the mountain of God?

Sunday, January 18, 2015

"Open Your Eyes and See" - 01/18/15 - Genesis 19-21

"Then God opened her eyes and she saw"(21:19)

Those times - when all things bad seem to be larger than life.  when it seems all we are able to do is focus on what isn't, what should be, what isn't fair.  when we begin to believe the lies of fear and doubt.  when we think we are alone.  we aren't going to make it through.

Those are the times when our ABBA comes to our rescue. 

It may not be how we deem the rescue should be, but we aren't able to see the whole paradigm. 

Only He is. 

But in our rescue, He opens our eyes and we are able to see. 

To see and focus on Him.  Our ABBA who is always there.

Saturday, January 17, 2015

"Every Single Thing" - 01/17/15 - Genesis 16-18

"One of them said, "I'm coming back about this time next year. When I arrive, your wife Sarah will have a son." Sarah was listening at the tent opening, just behind the man.            
Abraham and Sarah were old by this time, very old. Sarah was far past the age for having babies.        
Sarah laughed within herself, "An old woman like me? Get pregnant? With this old man of a husband?"
God said to Abraham, "Why did Sarah laugh saying, 'Me? Have a baby? An old woman like me?'
Is anything too hard for God?
I'll be back about this time next year and Sarah will have a baby." (18:10-14)
How often do we look at things from our eyes and think "impossible"?  How often do we forget it isn't about us - it is all about our ABBA.  His time.  His way. 
If He did everything  the way we think things "should" be, He wouldn't be God.  The one in charge.  Something we forget quite often.
If He didn't do things against all the odds, it wouldn't be as spectacular.  If everything about Him was commonplace.  mundane. ordinary. it just wouldn't be Him. 
Look at all He does outside of the box and we still continue to take Him for granted.  Still try to put ourselves in His place thinking we know better.  are better.  do better. 
When you really stop and think about it -  
Every single occurrence, no matter how big or small, is a miracle. Created by Him.  And only Him.

Friday, January 16, 2015

"Don't Be Afraid" - 01/16/15 - Genesis 12-15

"Don't be afraid, Abram. I'm your shield. Your reward will be grand!"(15:1)

More than 75 years old, asked by God to uproot and not know where he was going.  Surrounded by pagans, strangers and still accumulated great wealth. 

He did it though.  He followed God. 

I love  how The Word personalizes this account for us.  Even though Abram was following God's instructions, most of them anyway, was well provided for, had one on one communication with God, he was still afraid.

Even the strongest have fear. 

Even our Christ in The Garden had fear. 

Fear is a good thing - if we turn to Him for safety.  for comfort.  for strength. 

He is our shield.  At all times.  In all places. 

The reward we receive from ABBA for following Him isn't about the material things of this life.  It's all about the eternity.  With Him.  Forever.  Face to face. 

Fear shows how much we need Him. 

Thursday, January 15, 2015

"Tenderized" - 01/15/15 - Job 40-42

"His heart is as hard as a stone, Even as hard as a lower millstone."(41:24)

"give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus".(1 Thessalonians 5:18)

In everything give thanks. In every circumstance - in joy and in sorrow; for everything - for prosperity and for adversity; in every place - in the house of God and on the bed of sickness; Christians should not only be engaged in constant prayer, but in constant thanksgiving; indeed, their prayers should partake largely of the nature of thanksgiving. For this; this thankful spirit. Is the will of God; His desire. In Christ Jesus; the sphere in which this will of God is displayed. Concerning you. God by the gift of His Son has laid us under the obligation of perpetual thanksgiving. Our whole lives ought to be one continued thank-offering for all the blessings of redemption. give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.

You know, I used to struggle with this verse in Thessalonian.  Particularly when in a circumstance that wasn't to my liking.  Many a past moment have I become angry over the circumstance, rather than thankful. 

Along with the anger came bitterness.  vengeful thoughts.  unforgiving thoughts.  Very unChristlike thoughts. 

And in the process of not being thankful for the circumstances - my heart was becoming  "hard as a stone, Even as hard as a lower millstone."

Nowadays, I compare unfavorable circumstances to a meat tenderizer.  There are some cuts of meat needing just a bit of tenderizing or require the actual pounding to break down the muscle.  To absorb the seasonings.  To become tender.

My heart - it is just like that cut of meat.  There have been times ABBA has had to beat the tar out of it to make it tender and receiving of His "seasonings".  Those times are fewer and farther in between thankfully, but only because of my heart absorbing the "seasonings" of His Love, forgiveness, grace and mercy.  He has softened my heart through different circumstances and now I am able to truly be thankful at all times.  To look at life and others through His eyes instead of through my hardened heart. 

He has transformed my heart through good and bad circumstances.  All of which I am thankful for. 

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

"Need of a Station Change" - 01/14/15 - Job 38-39

"Then The LORD answered" (38:1)

I can't give the details, it isn't my place.  There is something new going on in our lives and I am struggling. 

It isn't that I am against it.  I am actually very happy. 

Right now, I am fighting "doubt" from coming in.

You know, that small whisper which is still able to command your attention.  No matter the noise, the busyness of life going on about you.  You still manage to hear it. 

I have just discovered it is because I need to change the frequency of my brain.  To turn the dial of "hearing, seeing" over to the ABBA station.  Until I do that - doubt will always filter in through my mind like fog in the streets of London.

After reading these two chapters in Job this morning of God speaking and asking Job where was he when He formed the world, I realized (again), "Wow!  Who am I to allow doubt to creep in and stir up worry and fear". 

In taking up "doubt", I am pretty much slapping my ABBA in the face with words of  "You aren't enough".  Enough to be in control of all that is going on in my little world, even though you created the whole of the world. 

During my prayer time with Him this morning, He answered all my fears and doubts about the current situation.  He reminded me with memories of where He has prevailed and used each of us as His Warriors.  He gave my mind pictures of faces belonging to those who He used us to lead to Him.  He answered me - yet again.

So - I am asking for prayers.  Prayers for His hedge of protection to be about each of us.  A hedge of protection to ward off the arrows satan is shooting at us, as we continue on as His Warriors.  I am asking for prayers for all to switch their dial so they may be totally consumed with His Words.  His answers.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

"The Marvel of His Works" - 01/13/15 -Job 35-37

"It's God's breath that forms the ice, it's God's breath that turns lakes and rivers solid". (37:10)

I can remember when I was in Jr. High, just a few years ago............a freeze came over the area after the rains.  The field next to our house was covered with a sheet of solid, smooth ice.  I can remember skating over the field in the dark under the moonlight.  The exercise keeping my body warm, my breath freezing in the air as it escaped from within my chest.  Although I wasn't much of a skater, I could manage to stay up and glide over the surface.  The best I ever got was to achieve a tight circle turnabout then going into a backwards skate. 

Today the sunshine is making diamonds on our snow covered lawn.  They sparkle and reflect everywhere my eyes rest, as I take in the beauty of His landscape.  Winter isn't my favorite season, but how much of His beauty He gives us in His freezing temperatures.  I love how He flocks the bare trees with an artistic flare after a heavy snow.  Amazed the thin branches don't break as they bow down before our ABBA.  How the footprints of His animals leave their mark, giving us a clue to where they have traveled.  How the sounds are much clearer.  The air seems cleaner.  The cardinals puffed up and sunning themselves, their red is like a splash of paint against the snow.  Everything is so stark that anything with color is more vibrant to our eyes. 

I. love. His. nature.

A gift to us. 

And today, His verse took my breath away.
"It's God's breath that forms the ice, it's God's breath that turns lakes and rivers solid".

Never before had I thought about how when walking on ice, I am walking on what His breath has formed.  What a marvel knowing He is that close. 

He has transformed water with His breath - HIS BREATH - into something we are able to walk upon.

And like water, He has transformed my thoughts from complaining of the cold, fearful of the ice, yearning for the spring, to instead be in awe of Him. 

To look at winter as yet another sign - He is near.  He is here.  With us.

Monday, January 12, 2015

"Ever so Quickly" - 01/11/15 - Job 29-31

"I was known for"(29:12)

In Chapter 29, Job is giving an account of what his life was once like. 

I wondered after reading today, what am I known for?

Is it as Christ follower?  Is Christ evident when I share life with others? 

Time slips so quickly - already it is almost the middle of January.  Already I have lived over halfway to 100.  Already I have been married for 32 years.  Already I have born and raised two sons.  Already they are now young adult men.  Already time has passed and never to be regained except as a memory.   Already have many opportunities been given to lead others to Him.   


Am I known for being His?

What are you known for........

"A Choice" - 01/12/15 - Job 32-34

"I have to speak - I have no choice. I have to say what's on my heart"(33:20)

There's a plaque on my office wall that says, "And these words shall be upon your heart and you shall teach them diligently to your children.  Love, faith, joy, kindness, patience, gentleness, faithfulness, goodness, forgiveness, hope, compassion, peace."

Along with faith, goodness, hope and compassion, this plaque is listing all but one of the Gifts of The Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23).  It has left off, "self control"
"I have to speak - I have no choice. I have to say what's on my heart"

There is always a choice.

"Self Control". 

I am able to see how my ABBA has transformed my heart.  I am able to see through the transformation how His Fruits have and are multiplying.  I am also able to see, although "self control" is the last one listed, it is the key element for the beginning of a transformation into becoming whom He made me to be. 

I had to allow ABBA to come in and sweep clean my heart, soul, mind.  Unfortunately it is a continuous process, but He is an immaculate, always present caretaker.  I had to give up my "self" and follow His lead.

It used to be I always felt "I" had to defend myself.  my actions.  my thoughts.  my decisions.  "I" had to be, or try to be, in control.  Usually that consisted of words coming out of me through my flapping mouth or my fingers striking keys on the keyboard.  And just like a boomerang, some of those hurtful words came back and kicked me right in the...........well, you know.

Nowadays, "I" just doesn't feel like defending "me".    In any way.  shape. or form.  I leave it up to my ABBA.  It has come through the fruit of Love.  of Forgiveness.  of kindness.  of gentleness.  of faithfulness.  of goodness.  of compassion.  It has only been because of looking at all through His eyes, I am able to have self-control. 

The funny thing is - through this fruit of self-control - I am able to have  such freedom.  Through His heart transformation, my repenting, I am now able to also enjoy the fruits of hope and peace.
He has given me the realization, when searching of my heart through His Word, through prayer, through the counsel of godly persons - this is where self-control has to live.  I have to have the self-control to remove, or change, behavior that is not Christlike.   Self-control needs to focus on what needs changed about me, not others.  "I" don't have to defend  "me"!  In this realization, He has removed all desire to point out what someone else has said or done.  They already know.  And ABBA knows. 

He has taught me the Fruit of Self-Control is choosing to be consumed by ABBA-Control and the things "I have to speak - I have no choice. I have to say what's on my heart", need to be of Him.


Saturday, January 10, 2015

"Another Gift" - 01/09/15 - Job 21-23

"God alone knows the way to Wisdom, He knows the exact place to find it.
He knows where everything is on earth, He sees everything under heaven.
After He commanded the winds to blow and measured out the waters,
Arranged for the rain and set off explosions of thunder and lightning,
He focused on Wisdom, made sure it was all set and tested and ready.
Then He addressed the human race:
'Here it is! Fear-of-the-Lord - that's Wisdom, and Insight means shunning evil.'"(28:23-28)
The gift of Wisdom is there for each of us.  Promised through the studying and consuming of His Word. 
After reading these verses in Job this morning, I picked up my "In Touch" publication to read today's devotional from the sermons of Charles F. Stanley.
I just love how ABBA pulls all things together through the Wisdom in His Word!
"The Way to Acquire Wisdom"
Knowledge is a prized commodity in the world, but more important than knowledge is Wisdom (Proverbs 8:11).  God wants us to view life from His viewpoint and evaluate everything according to Biblical principles.
How are believers to acquire this God-given insight?  The obvious answer is that we must seek it.  Too often, however, people who say they want to be wise do little to actually make that happen.  Like any worthwhile treasure, Wisdom must be actively pursued and carefully gleaned from its sources.
The first source is The Bible.  Proverbs teaches that we should pay attention to God's life-giving Words and hold His commands in our hearts (4:20-22).  These days information is broadcast with the slant of the people who packaged it.  The only way to know the right perspective - namely, God's - is to read His ancient "broadcast" and apply its principles (8:33).
Another source of Wisdom is the counsel of godly men and women (12:15).  The Lord at times brings fellow believers into our life to offer Biblical advice, encouragement, or reproof.  In Proverbs, those who ignore the words of a righteous person are labeled "fool."  Don't be foolish.  Surround yourself with other followers of Christ who are also seeking Wisdom as their treasure.
Our Heavenly Father ensures that those who seek Wisdom will find it (8:12, 17).  Diligent believers will discover they possess abundant treasure:  In addition to godly insight they'll have knowledge discernment, and prudence - rare riches in the modern world.  Use them well." 

Friday, January 09, 2015

"Rescued" - 01/09/15 - Job 21-23

"Yes, even the guilty will escape, escape through God's grace in your life." (22:30)

The memory crept in from out of nowhere.  Came right in and filled the space behind my closed eyes as I knelt in prayer before Him.  A memory of a past sin I have confessed, repented of. 

satan is always standing there, at the ready, holding up the robe of shame and doubt.  It gives him such pleasure when I reach out for it, and proceed to put it upon my shoulders.  Not as much as I used to though.  Thankfully. 

My ABBA constantly reminds me, I am His chosen one.  His princess.  I am His. 

It knocks the wind out of me, my stomach churns, tears can not be contained when I allow myself to think about "what if".  What if He had not of been there to intercede?  What if He had not of been in complete control?  What if He had of given up on me? 

Looking back I can plainly see, my journey would  have not placed me here today. 

I am guilty of so much, yet He freed me from paying the cost of my sins. 

Through the memories I see the ugly mask of sin I was wearing.  And still.  Still.  He reached out through all the ugliness and filth to touch me.  To rescue me.  To claim me as His own. 

He Loved me in my ugliest.

Just as I am to love others.  and my "self".  To look past the mask of sin.  the filth.  the ugliness of sin.  To look past and love as He loves.  To see all are made in the image of Him. 

I am not the only one the gift of grace is extended to.  But, I am one He will use to let others see how His Grace rescues. 

Thursday, January 08, 2015

"Use Me" - 01/08/15 - Job 17-20

"He's angry with me - oh, how He's angry! He treats me like His worst enemy.(19:11)

Job used to be my least favorite passages to read.  to study.  There seemed to be nothing but unfairness and games with Job being the pawn. 

"God said to Satan, "Have you noticed my friend Job? There's no one quite like him - honest and true to his word, totally devoted to God and hating evil."(1:8)

Anger and bitterness were usually my companions while journeying through the account of Job.  It seemed as though ABBA had more or less thrown him out to the wolves.  And in looking about life, it seemed as though this was something ABBA still did and does.

Using people in the game between Him and satan.

It wasn't until I did an in-depth  study on the book of Job that my eyes were opened up to "the rest of the story".  First off, we are not the ones to tell ABBA what He can and can't do.  If He were the type of God who used people just to use them, which He isn't, He has that right.  He is after all our Creator.  I struggled with the mixed-up image in my mind of our ABBA being of Love, yet allowing such horrors to take place in not only Job's life, but those of other Christians. 

Through this study of Job, my eyes were finally opened up to The Truth.

Job was a mighty warrior.  ABBA was placing His best man in the front line of battle to be an example for all other warriors to follow.  Yes, the account of Job shows us he was completely human at times crying out at the unfairness of it all, crying over his losses after living a life devoted to ABBA, but it also shows us how He never fell away from ABBA.  It shows us how we are to stay focused on our ABBA and follow His lead.  Even when in the midst of the battle. 

Job reminds me over and over, it isn't in the midst of the battle I am going to be spending eternity.  The war has already been won through our Savior, Jesus Christ, and I am a warrior to be used in the battles for remaining lost souls. 

Through Job I have learned to count it a blessing to be used by our ABBA.  It is a sign He sees me as a mighty warrior for Him. 

but the lord said to him peace do not be afraid you are not going to ...

Wednesday, January 07, 2015

"My Someone" - 01/07/15 - Job 14-16

"There must be Someone in heaven who knows the truth about me, in highest heaven, some Attorney who can clear my name -
My Champion, my Friend, while I'm weeping my eyes out before God.                 
I appeal to The One who represents mortals before God as a neighbor stands up for a neighbor."   (16:19-21)
My heart breaks as I read the gut wrenching words of Job.  My heart breaks for those who do not know The "Someone" Job was pleading for.  The "Someone" who we call our Savior.
There is an actual ache inside of my being when I read these words.  The place of no hope.  The place of not knowing the feeling of security which comes when "in" Christ.  The being in The Palm of our ABBA's Hand.  The knowing, without any doubt, no matter what attacks us, harms us physically, mentally, or emotionally, we are safe spiritually - for Eternity.
My heart skips a beat knowing how close I came to not choosing to live my life "in" Him.   
Such words of comfort.  such words to draw strength from.
"My Champion.  My Friend."
My Savior.  My Jesus. My "Someone". 

Tuesday, January 06, 2015

"Into His Light" - 01/06/15 - Job 10-13

 "Your life would be brighter than noonday; Darkness would be like the morning.
"Then you would trust, because there is hope; And you would look around and rest securely. "

Throughout the years I have written in the margins of my Bible alongside verses which touched my heart.  I smile as I reread these little notes, dated on the day they were written, seeing how much my ABBA has grown me. 

Grown me.  Only through Him. 

So many things He has taken my fingers and pried them away from.  Things I was clinging onto for dear life.  my comfort zone.  So many ways, He has taken my freed hands and put into them His own.  His own Hand to lead me into uncharted waters.

I didn't so much love it at the time, but now am so thankful He took the time to grow me into whom He designed me to be.  Yes, I still have much growth left within me, but at least I am growing towards His Light instead of keeping my soul in a dark closet called "false sense of security". 

I love looking about the changes He has produced in my life and knowing, without doubt, I am resting securely in Him. 

He really does - you know - take the darkness and make it like the morning.


Monday, January 05, 2015

"Why Not?" - 01/05/15 - Job 6-9

"He will yet fill your mouth with laughter And your lips with shouting."(8:21)

Next to this verse I had written in the margin, "I so desire this in my heart - 01/21/11".
I smiled as I realized He has blessed me with this request.  I do hear laughter coming from my mouth more often than not.  I do feel like shouting from the depths of me how much I adore and love my ABBA.  Through these years He has/is changing my focus to be on Him and not myself. 
When focused on Him, it doesn't matter when life isn't fair here.  I know I still have much room for growth, but I do see growth! 
I love that along with the blessings of laughter, the Fruits of the Spirit have free reign within me.  To grow and manifest, to continue to change me from the inside out.
New Years Resolutions have never been a big thing for me.  Mainly because I couldn't keep them!  But this year, I am going to strive to take the advice given through the attached article.  Take a moment and read - it is worth your time.  Not only today, but to implement into the rest of your life.
I often teach about happiness and what has become exceedingly clear is this: There are seven qualities chronically unhappy people have mastered.
According to Psychology Today, University of California researcher Sonja Lyubomirsky states: "40 percent of our capacity for happiness is within our power to change."
If this is true and it is, there's hope for us all. There are billions of people on our planet and clearly some are truly happy. The rest of us bounce back and forth between happiness and unhappiness depending on the day.
Throughout the years, I've learned there are certain traits and habits chronically unhappy people seem to have mastered. But before diving in with you, let me preface this and say: we all have bad days, even weeks when we fall down in all seven areas.
The difference between a happy and unhappy life is how often and how long we stay there.
Here are the 7 qualities of chronically unhappy people.
1. Your default belief is that life is hard.
Happy people know life can be hard and tend to bounce through hard times with an attitude of curiosity versus victimhood. They take responsibility for how they got themselves into a mess, and focus on getting themselves out of it as soon as possible.
Perseverance towards problem-solving versus complaining over circumstances is a symptom of a happy person. Unhappy people see themselves as victims of life and stay stuck in the "look what happened to me" attitude versus finding a way through and out the other side.

2. You believe most people can't be trusted.
I won't argue that healthy discernment is important, but most happy people are trusting of their fellow man. They believe in the good in people, versus assuming everyone is out to get them. Generally open and friendly towards people they meet, happy people foster a sense of community around themselves and meet new people with an open heart.
Unhappy people are distrustful of most people they meet and assume that strangers can't be trusted. Unfortunately this behavior slowly starts to close the door on any connection outside of an inner-circle and thwarts all chances of meeting new friends.

3. You concentrate on what's wrong in this world versus what's right.
There's plenty wrong with this world, no arguments here, yet unhappy people turn a blind eye to what's actually right in this world and instead focus on what's wrong. You can spot them a mile away, they'll be the ones complaining and responding to any positive attributes of our world with "yeah but".
Happy people are aware of global issues, but balance their concern with also seeing what's right. I like to call this keeping both eyes open. Unhappy people tend to close one eye towards anything good in this world in fear they might be distracted from what's wrong. Happy people keep it in perspective. They know our world has problems and they also keep an eye on what's right.

4. You compare yourself to others and harbor jealousy.
Unhappy people believe someone else's good fortune steals from their own. They believe there's not enough goodness to go around and constantly compare yours against theirs. This leads to jealousy and resentment.
Happy people know that your good luck and circumstance are merely signs of what they too can aspire to achieve. Happy people believe they carry a unique blueprint that can't be duplicated or stolen from -- by anyone on the planet. They believe in unlimited possibilities and don't get bogged down by thinking one person's good fortune limits their possible outcome in life.

5. You strive to control your life.
There's a difference between control and striving to achieve our goals. Happy people take steps daily to achieve their goals, but realize in the end, there's very little control over what life throws their way.
Unhappy people tend to micromanage in effort to control all outcomes and fall apart in dramatic display when life throws a wrench in their plan. Happy people can be just as focused, yet still have the ability to go with the flow and not melt down when life delivers a curve-ball.
The key here is to be goal-oriented and focused, but allow room for letting sh*t happen without falling apart when the best laid plans go awry- because they will. Going with the flow is what happy people have as plan B.

6. You consider your future with worry and fear.
There's only so much rent space between your ears. Unhappy people fill their thoughts with what could go wrong versus what might go right.
Happy people take on a healthy dose of delusion and allow themselves to daydream about what they'd like to have life unfold for them. Unhappy people fill that head space with constant worry and fear.
Happy people experience fear and worry, but make an important distinction between feeling it and living it. When fear or worry crosses a happy person's mind, they'll ask themselves if there's an action they can be taken to prevent their fear or worry from happening (there's responsibility again) and they take it. If not, they realize they're spinning in fear and they lay it down.

7. You fill your conversations with gossip and complaints.
Unhappy people like to live in the past. What's happened to them and life's hardships are their conversation of choice. When they run out of things to say, they'll turn to other people's lives and gossip.
Happy people live in the now and dream about the future. You can feel their positive vibe from across the room. They're excited about something they're working on, grateful for what they have and dreaming about the possibilities of life.
Obviously none of us are perfect. We're all going to swim in negative waters once in a while, but what matters is how long we stay there and how quickly we work to get ourselves out. Practicing positive habits daily is what sets happy people apart from unhappy people, not doing everything perfectly.
Walk, fall down, get back up again, repeat. It's in the getting back up again where all the difference resides.


Sunday, January 04, 2015

"There's a Need" - 01/04/15 - Job 1-5

"You yourself have done this plenty of times, spoken words that clarify, encouraged those who were about to quit.
Your words have put stumbling people on their feet, put fresh hope in people about to collapse.
But now you're the one in trouble - you're hurting! You've been hit hard and you're reeling from the blow."(4:3-5)
There is a need -
For each one of us.  There is a need for each one of us to do as our ABBA commands.  To love one another.  To love one another in ways of encouragement, accountability, acceptance.  To walk along side of each other and build up, hold up, keep up, as we live through this life. 
All of us.  Each one of us.  We will either be walking along on the smooth winding highway or the road littered with potholes.  We will be walking through areas of needing sunglasses from the brightness of The Light or in areas where every flashlight is needed to navigate our way through the darkness trying to block out The Light along our route. 
All of us.  Each one of us.  We are all needed.  To share.  To help fight off.  To give. To receive.  
To just be. 
Be there for each other. 
That is why He created us as His family. 

Saturday, January 03, 2015

"Never Does He Not" - 02/03/15 - Genesis 8-11

"But God remembered"(8:1)

It was just 14 days ago I was praying for the safe arrival of our Nichalas/Amber.  I prayed for time to slow to a crawl, for me to count blessings given, to focus on time spent together, not apart.  To obey ABBA when He told me to count what He gives me, not what I don't get.  To focus on being more like my Christ, rather than being consumed with "me".

Today, I am praying for their safe travels as they make their way back to Phoenix. 

Yes.  I still feel the tears as they slowly run down my cheeks. Yes.  My heart still has a physical ache when I know today marks the last time of seeing, touching, hearing, watching, just being together, without a future date set on the calendar.  Yes.  I even wish I could turn the clock back - not just 14 days ago, but years. 

It would be so easy to slip into the wishing for yesterdays when they were little and we were together each and every day.  When my days were filled with their little faces looking up at me, their little hands reaching out to me.  My ears filled with the giggles and conversations of two brothers bonding as forever best friends. 

But, I am not.  I am breathing in "a new beginning".  I will occasionally take out and reminisce the view ABBA has given me from the "window in my ark".  But today, I am looking forward to Eternity.  I am not going to focus on the next 365 days in which we may spend few weeks together, but on the fact these next days are only a blip on our way to Eternity.

My ABBA remembered.

These past few days He has taken time and made it crawl. He has taken this home and filled it to the rafters with so many parts of our hearts. He has blessed me in the making of  memory after memory to carry me through to eternity. He has remembered me. He has remembered us all.

I am not the only parent to feel this way in separating from their child.  I am not the only one who misses those who aren't with us any longer.  He uses each of us to bring comfort to one another as we journey through times when those we love aren't with us.  He uses each of us to give strength, encouragement, insight, to focus on eternity.  He uses the accounts of those in His Word who experienced the same emotions we do. 

He remembers us in our pain.  In our joy.  In our sorrow.  In our laughter.  In the all of us.

He has remembered and is teaching me to make the most of my days here.  Not to fill them with self-pity.  With selfishness.  With pouting and wanting more.  He has taught me to take what I am given and use it for His Glory.  He is teaching me to take the blessing of time and live life for Him.  To fill my moments with those He has put into my path and embrace life, instead of spending them yearning for those who are not with me. 

Our ABBA never forgets us. 

Friday, January 02, 2015

"Window on my Way Home" - 01/02/15 - Genesis 4-7

"You shall make a window for the ark"(6:16)

When the boys were little, we played a game we made up called "Get Lost".  We would pack up some snacks, a little bit of money, and a roll of toilet paper, load up into the car and take off.  At each intersection we came to, one of them would choose which way to turn.  That simple game has given us many memories of adventures, discoveries, and places explored that were off the beaten path.

On one occasion we came upon a bridge and got out to explore the creek running underneath.  This place became the spot where Nichalas was baptized at 2:29, 02/29/04. 

Yesterday, it was just the two of us in the car spending time together.  He knows me so well it was impossible to plan a surprise for him.  He knew exactly where we were headed when I picked him up.  It had been 10 years since we had last been to this spot and didn't know if we would be able to locate it again.  Driving on the back roads, our memory was being refreshed by familiar sites, bringing back things we had said or done on that day of adventure when it wasn't just the two of us in the car.  The bitter wind tore through us as we stood on the bridge, posing in front of the camera. 

We found it.

Last night after supper the five of us began another "adventure" in learning a new game.  It became another time of not only confusion, but laughter, ribbing each other and just being together. 

ABBA was giving me a "window for the ark".

I am trying not to think about tomorrows.  I am trying to take in and make the most of each moment we have in all being together.  I am rejoicing in all the sharing  we have had over these past few days.  I am continually fighting back tears, knowing tomorrow is when two parts of my heart will be making their way back to Phoenix, not for sure when the next time we will see each other.  I treasure the pictures in my mind of times when looking out "my window" and watching the faces of my loves interacting.  I can't help but smile in seeing how Adam and Nichalas are with one another.  So unlike Cain and Abel are these two.  These two who are "their brothers keeper". 

I was thinking today about the verse ABBA gave me yesterday, "in the beginning".  It is so bittersweet in the next new breath.  The part of not wanting to let go, yet knowing there is another new adventure in the next breath taken in.  Adventures taken in and kept within my heart, as I look out the window, while living life. 

So many memories.  My window.  Living in this world on an ark, while on my journey Home.  


Thursday, January 01, 2015

"Breathe" - 01/01/15 - Genesis 1-3

"In the beginning God"(1:1)

Today I am entering into what will be my 56th year of "beginning". 

Not only my birth day in October, but "beginning" over and over again.

Beginning over - with each breath I am given.  Beginning - with repentance.  with more of an awareness of ABBA.  with taking another step.  with endings.  with new starts.  with just staying where I am.  with picking up doubt.  with laying it down.  with growing.  relationships.  myself.  with letting go of that which He commands of me.  letting go of self.  letting go of lies. with growing more like my Jesus. 


A new year.  A new dawn.  A new place. 

Beginning.  With.  In.  Him.

With each breath I am given.