Saturday, September 17, 2016

Spending time ...

I woke up this morning at 4:30 and was unable to fall back to sleep; so, I got up, thinking maybe there was something the LORD needed to say. I have tons of resources, and usually, I pick one up and it fits my day; however, this morning wasn't starting off that way. As I opened my Bible I thought, "I don't know what to read Lord, I'm kinda lost for direction." Do you ever have those 'lean' times where you find that not all quiet times are full of deep insight and buckets of tears? Well, I have, and He is teaching me that sometimes, it's simply about spending time with Him, allowing yourself to read and enjoy the beauty of His words,  finding yourself within the struggles and joys of the people who have lived it all before you. He will always "guide me with [His] counsel, there is none upon the earth that I desire besides [Him.] (Psalm 73:24-25) Often He isn't in the wind or the earthquake or fire, He is in the still small voice, and those times that we believe to be lean, are in fact, more full of His presence than we realize. (I Kings 19)


Saturday, April 30, 2016

Thank You!

Thank you for the rain - it nourishes the ground and calms my spirit.
Thank you for my memories, they keep me grounded and thankful.
Thank you for my church - they are stuck with me forever ;-)
Thank you for the honesty and encouragement of friends - iron sharpens iron
Thank you for surprise packages in the mail - they make my heart smile!
Thank you for tears - they wash out the soul's sadness.
Thank you for the detour of heartbreak - it leads you to the place you are supposed to be.
Thank you for knowing me and planning me a great future - I'm looking forward to it!
Thank you for dying for me -  with each stripe, each wound, you conquered death and hell for me.

Thank you for old restored barns - they remind me you make old things new !
 Thank you for your Relentless Grace - I am a debtor set free.

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

It's Only Cold for a Second

And Joshua said to the people, “Sanctify yourselves, for tomorrow the Lord will do wonders among you.” And it shall come to pass, as soon as the soles of the feet of the priests who bear the ark of the Lord , the Lord of all the earth, shall rest in the waters of the Jordan, that the waters of the Jordan shall be cut off, the waters that come down from upstream, and they shall stand as a heap.” And as those who bore the ark came to the Jordan, and the feet of the priests who bore the ark dipped in the  edge of the water (for the Jordan overflows all its banks during the whole time of harvest), Then the priests who bore the ark of the covenant of the Lord stood firm on dry ground in the midst of the Jordan; and all Israel crossed over on dry ground, until all the people had crossed completely over the Jordan. (Joshua 3:5, 13-13, 15, 17)

I stood at the edge of the water today, and I couldn't help but think of Joshua and the children of Israel, standing on the banks of the Jordan River - facing one more obstacle, and expecting a miracle. God was standing ready to redirect the waters of Jordan, to stop the currents and allow His children to walk through. I believe what moved me the most today was that because of Joshua's faithfulness to listen to God and the priests' willingness to act in faith the miracle was enacted. As I moved my feet closer to the edge of the water,  I thought about how little God asks of me; and yet, I still struggle to walk out in faith sometimes. He nugdes me to take such tiny steps, so why do I find myself doubting and hesitating? Our obedient faith, like the priests', has the potential to touch lives, encourage them, and engage the throne room of Heaven. This should be all we need to motivate us - this realization that He uses us to help others reach their destination - remembering, He's waiting, ready to perform miracles, we only need to dip our toes in the edge of the water. It's only cold for a second. 

Monday, March 14, 2016

Live Life Well...

For the past few months, as I've driven back and forth to school, this old barn had captured my attention many times. I really don't know why, other than it reminds me that everything, once upon a time, was new. Time marches on, and it doesn't stand still for anyone; so,

stop and take the pictures you want to, 5 minutes of beauty makes your soul happy;

stop at that roadside Farmer's stand and buy fresh veggies, your tummy will say thank you;

spend that extra hour watching cartoons with your babies, it makes them feel special (and it will make your heart smile);

travel, take mini-vacations, life is too grand of an adventure to miss it;

go on day road trips with a good friend (and laugh til your sides hurt), it's good for your health;

never stop being one who learns, your mind will thank you for it;

sit at the side of the lake, the ocean, a stream or the creek, and just be still, and listen, it will quiet your hurried soul;

take the time to have good, old fashioned, actual, honest-to-goodness conversations; the art of communication is more valuable than you realize;

let your kids help you make pancakes at midnight, a few giggles, glasses of milk and sweet late-night conversations make fantastic memories;

take the time to look up at the stars more than you look down at your phone, trust me, God's been working on me about this one;

say "thank you" more and more everyday, a life lived in gratitude makes for a pleasant attitude;

don't just say kind words, BE kind, it will lift another person's spirit, and bless your own;

The psalmist had it right when he said, "So teach us to number our days, That we may gain a heart of wisdom." Life is so precious, live it well my friends, enjoy every moment..


Friday, March 4, 2016

His Girl Again

I flipped the pages to the calendar this evening, and was overwhelmed with my memories. 6 years ago, I was in what, to me, felt like a dungeon of despair. I was an addict who mourned a life she could only dream of. I remembered the call of my spirit to be His "girl again." I longed to make Him proud, I just didn't think I ever could.

I remember, even in my misery, my sin, my sadness, His word was my conviction, and it was my comfort. The dates in my Bible seem like a lifetime ago now, but wow, what a difference 6 years, and a marvelous Savior, can make!!  As I unpacked these golden nuggets from the storehouse of grace tonite, I could only weep with gratitude.

I am grateful His hand is salvation, and He heard me even though my sins had hidden His face from me. My paths had undoubtedly been crooked and finding my way back home was a long journey; nevertheless, the light did come. If you only knew that girl 6 years ago, you'd know why I find it amazing to have the beautiful life I do, and why I love Him so. I'm thankful He heard my prayer, and that even when I didn't feel like I was His girl, to my Father, I always was.

Behold, the Lord ’s hand is not shortened, That it cannot save; Nor His ear heavy, That it cannot hear. But your iniquities have separated you from your God; And your sins have hidden His face from you, So that He will not hear. The way of peace they have not known, And there  is no justice in their ways; They have made themselves crooked paths; Whoever takes that way shall not know peace...

Arise, shine; For your light has come! And the glory of the Lord is risen upon you. “Instead of bronze I will bring gold, Instead of iron I will bring silver, Instead of wood, bronze, And instead of stones, iron. I will also make your officers peace, And your magistrates righteousness. Violence shall no longer be heard in your land, Neither wasting nor destruction within your borders; But you shall call your walls Salvation, And your gates Praise.
   Isaiah 59:1-2, 15. Isaiah 60:1, 17-18

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Cars, Bathtubs and Stillness

Sometimes when I'm sitting here, and the day is peaceful, and life isn't such a hurried mess, I find myself thinking about how good it is to sit still before the Lord and just be quiet. However, what happens to that stillness when I get lost in tomorrow's inevitable chaos? It becomes more of a seemingly elusive choice,  a choice to stop, even if for one minute, and be quiet. (My car or bathtub are looking pretty promising as domains of quietness) No phone, computer, textbook, or people to distract my collective focus on simply listening, and feeling His breath upon my scattered soul.

I'm not saying it will be easy by any means, but I am telling myself it is possible, because it is my choice. His words of promise, redemption, instruction and love assure me that He wants what is best for us individually, and as a collective creation, learning to lean on Him, listen and stand still before Him is an action..."belief is a verb" is how Ann Voskamo puts it, I liked that.

So, my friend, I am sending out a word of encouragement for you to stand still, and see His salvation, listen to His voice, it is possible to hear it, even in the midst of a crazy world and even busier life. Let His word uplift your tired soul and weary heart - His pleasure is to give you the kingdom, so shouldn't we trust Him for even the smallest if things?

 "There are many plans in a man’s heart,
nevertheless the Lord’s counsel—that will stand. “For My thoughts are not your thoughts,  Nor are your ways My ways,” says the Lord. “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts. Commit your works to the Lord,
And your thoughts will be established. “Fear not, little flock, for it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom." (Luke 12:32, Proverbs 19:21, Isaiah 55: 8-9, Proverbs 16:3)

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

My soul is comforted ...

My time with the Lord this morning has been so peaceful.  You know when you are with a really really good friend and it doesn't matter if you say one word or not, the silence often is more golden than the audible  conversation?  Well, that's kinda what I'm talking about today, it's just really quiet and still, every now and again, He will whisper a verse to my soul through the stillness, but it's just so gentle ... ahhhh, my soul, what comfort there is to be found in sitting still with my Friend, my Father, my Peace.

"...the breath of the Almighty hath given me life." (Job 33:4b)