February 28, 2010

How to Fix a Fearful Heart

Okay....it's Saturday when I'm writing this...and to be awaken to the news of yet another powerful earthquake that struck, with a possible tsunami to follow just made my heart sink.  *sigh*   More Bad News.   

I know the Lord is reminding us that He is the One in control, and I really believe He's trying to get our attention.   He's coming soon.  No doubt.   The news of His arrival being announced by the blast of the trumpet SHOULD BE a welcome relief for God's children.   But honestly, how do you feel when you think of the rapture taking place?  Is this honestly something you are looking forward to?  
Does this give your heart a sense of peace and longing for His return ~OR~ do you feel a sense of impending D O O M???

I guess it all depends on the condition of our heart..and whether or not we are truly saved.   How's our relationship with Him been going lately??    Are we busy about the Master's Business, building His kingdom ~OR~ are we busy about our OWN business by building up a beautiful sand castle that is about to be washed away by an enormous tsunami!?!?  

February 27, 2010

Just Look at My Hands

Who his own
self bare our
 sins in his own body on the tree,
that we, being
dead to sins,
should live unto
by whose stripes
ye were healed.
I Peter 2:24

Well, as I sit here waiting for yet another load of clothes to wash, I am extremely thankful for the fact that our washer/pipe problem has been fixed!  Yee-HAW!  (can you believe I'm actually EXCITED to be able to do laundry again?  Me neither!  But, as they say, "this (happy-to-do-laundry-feeling) TOO shall pass!")  LOL

If you haven't read yesterday's blog, you may want to read it, or at least the "Breaking News" Part at the very end.  Today's blog picks up from that.  

What do you think when you read the part that said:  Local 'Plumber and Son, Co.' left with a final statement: "It's just a shock that anything could GO DOWN!"  Son added, "Yeah, when my dad said it was clogged with junk, he was NOT KIDDING! Just look at my hands!"   As soon as I read that the Holy Spirit opened my eyes!   "LOOK, Tammi!~~~'the SON added.....'LOOK AT MY HANDS!'  Did you catch that?"   I thought of Jesus, God's only uniquely born Son.    I could imagine, our clogged main pipeline as a spiritual lesson. 

February 26, 2010

Pressure Washin'

That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish. Ephesians 5:26, 27

Ever had one of those days when you just wonder "what else in the world could go wrong?" Pressure here, pressure there, pressure everywhere... except where it needs to be---like a tire!?!? LOL Anyway, yes, we've all had those days when it just seems as if we can't take it any longer. Just when you feel the walls closing in, He's got His eyes on you..He knows how much pressure you can take.

Remember from an earlier post I had written about our dark times are always a time to listen ? ?   Sometimes, trials and tests will come --->from every direction<---  and it does seem like it's just too much. But remember, He's going to teach us a lesson in this storm if we'll only be quiet and listen patiently for His voice.

Well, this week has been "loads" of fun. . .and I do mean LOADS. . .of laundry! For some reason my washer is putting out so much water during its drain cycles that the old slow pipes just can't handle the outflow. So in order to get a load done, I have to stand there, and "patiently" watch and listen for the washer to drain. As it's draining, I can hear the water quickly rising in that pipe. When I DO finally see the water begin to peak I immediately push the "STOP" button. I have to press STOP on the washer--just to give the pipe time to drain . . then I pull "start" and let the tub drain, then stop. You get the picture. It takes a long time. And it's not really fun either. If I don't do this, the garage will be flooded!

So what is it that You are trying to teach me in THIS situation, Lord? Well..."ask and ye shall receive..." LOL He showed me something pretty neat:

February 24, 2010

White Sand

"And they that be wise shall shine as the brightness
of the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for ever and ever."  
Daniel 12:3

Earlier this morning, my daughter asked me about Pensacola, Florida..which made me think, "Ahhh, the warmth and beauty of the white sandy beaches of Pensacola!  How I'd love to visit there one day!" 

Well, that got the wheels in my mind thinking.  Aren't WE, as Christians, supposed to be like "white sand?"  You may be wondering, "Tammi, where's this going??"   Let's take a trip to the beach, shall we?  :o)

Have you ever been to the beach around "high noon" on a cloudless day?   The brightness of that sand under your feet reflects the sun's light!   Remember how your bare tootsies felt with that warm sand squishing between your toes?  So therapeutic--not to mention the wonderfully smoothing effects on the bottom of your calloused feet.  (You see where this is going yet?)   We need to be reflecting the Light of the Son each and every day of our lives...S H I N E so brightly that others have NO MISTAKE that the brightness of our lives are due to none other than the Son!   When we do that, others will no doubt feel the warmth of the Son as well, right?  They SHOULD.  Do others see the Light of the Son and feel His warmth whenever they are near you?   They SHOULD.   If not, ask the Son to shine brightly in your life...ask Him to take away all the impurities in your heart so that others see only the purity and brightness of Him in you.  

February 23, 2010

A Follower

Well, since this blogging "stuff" is rather new to me, I wasn't quite sure what to think when I was setting up my blog a few weeks ago and found the word "followers" on there.   What?    What in the world is that anyway?  It actually "kinda" made me cringe a bit....why would I want anyone to be a follower of ME?  I mean, hello?  Aren't we supposed to follow the Lord?   Seriously, I considered removing that little link on there...And then there was the little junior high insecurity complex---what if that number remains at "zero," will that make me a "zero?"   (you know exactly what I'm talking about---junior high--the one with the most friends "wins" -- ie isn't the "class nerd" or "outcast.") 

Anyway....back to the original idea before I hop off onto a rabbit trail Boing BoInG!  = :o)  I really didn't like the idea of someone following me.     But then it hit me. . . BAM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!   (ouch that "hoit:")   I AM supposed to be able to say to others "Follow me, as I follow Christ."    OH MY!    Then that placed a big burden on my heart and shoulders (no..not HEAD and SHOULDERS-the shampoo)  .. but nevertheless, there was the burden....I am responsible for others around me.  "am I SERIOUSLY my brother/sister's keeper?"  SERIOUSLY???    Yep.  Sho nuff!   

We are living epistles "known and read by all men."   So....that means, in a sense (Oh I'm clapping here people!)  WE ARE LIVING BLOGS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!   HOW COOL IS THAT!?!?!?!?!?!?       Are you still with me ????   Isn't God good!?!?!    When He just told me that, it was like He was saying, "See, Tammi, I may be the 'Ancient of Days,' but I AM also CURRENT TOO!"  God is never OUT OF DATE!!!    

Oh Dear Father...Dear Jesus, and Dear Sweet Holy Spirit....please, and I humbly repeat, pretty please help me to be a worthy "blog"---PLEASE enable my life to be a living BLOG--known and read of all men. . . all of my friends, all of my co-workers, all of my F A M I L Y!    I want to be able to safely say to them, "Follow me, as I follow You, Dear Lord.  Oh, and P.S., please help me follow YOU because that is the only way I can safely say that.  Thanks.  In Jesus' Sweet Beautiful Name, Amen.

Okay people....let's get "B L O G G I N' "  
have a great day y'all!

February 21, 2010

He added a "P.S."

If you read the previous blog, you're aware that the Lord gave me an opportunity to speak today to my church family regarding the darkness of depression and discouragement in a Christian's life.   In yesterday's blog are the notes from what He gave me to share. 

Even though I knew this message was definitely from Him for someone else, I couldn't help but feel like something was missing.  I talked with the Lord about this... "Lord, yes, this may lift up the spirit of someone in church, but what about lifting YOU UP?  I want to lift YOU UP, Lord."    Well, as I was drying my hair last night, just before one in the morning, and going over the thoughts for today, the Lord gently "tapped me on the shoulder" and said, "I've got a little 'P.S.' I'd like to add."  And that's when He told me, "I too have had a veil of darkness pulled over Me...while on the cross at Calvary.  Our Father pulled the veil of darkness over Me too.  But this was even darker, and deeper than any one else will ever have to experience."  And that's when He began to really show me that whenever He deals with us, His motivation is ALWAYS IN LOVE. . .even His rebuke or discipline is always motivated by His love for us.   But, when Christ was on the cross, and our Heavenly Father pulled that veil of darkness over Him, Christ did not experience the Love of God... NO!  He experienced the WRATH of God....something that we will never have to experience.  THANK YOU, FATHER!!  THANK YOU, JESUS!  THANK YOU, HOLY SPIRIT, FOR REVEALING THIS TO ME!

February 20, 2010

From Darkness to Light

Last week our Pastor requested prayer for several members of our church family who are going through extremely difficult waters right now.  Some have lost all  hope, some have given up on God...and some are becoming bitter.   As I sat there, the Lord reminded me that I was "just there" last summer.  And yet, here I am, pulled out from that darkness and back into His light.   Did He want me to encourage these people to hang in there?   I'm willing to be a vessel in His hands, to do His will.  So, after church I asked Pastor if he felt that me writing a letter to share my experience and have him deliver it to the hurting ones would be a help?   Remembering what I went through, Pastor took me by the hand, and said, "Tammi, I think it would mean more to them if they heard it straight from you.  Would you pray about taking about ten minutes to share your experience within the next week or two?"   I told him I would.   That was last Sunday.  This past week has been spent in much thought, prayer and seeking the Lord's guidance.  What did He want me to say?   All I had to do was ask Him and seek Him.

Lord willing, I will be sharing the following notes with my church family tomorrow.  Please pray for the Lord to encourage the hearts of His children, and be lifted up.

From Darkness to Light:

Recently I found a prayer I had written last July. It ended with “Losing Hope Fast. HELP, Father. I’m sinking.”

Circumstances were overwhelming me.  From where I was “standing,” the surrounding conditions were distorting my perspective of life.  I had lost ALL HOPE and given up on God.  Looking back, I’m certain that I did NOTHING to bring myself out of that darkness!

But I wonder….why is it that God would allow some of us to be touched (or SLAM RUN OVER) by darkness of depression??  What purpose does this serve anyway!?   After all---God is light..and in Him is NO DARKNESS right??   I know I am His child and have Him within me..SO PLEASE TELL ME why does He sometimes pull the veil of darkness over me and remove the SENSE of His presence?

Last Sunday, I came home and asked the Lord to show me what He wanted me to say today. And He immediately answered prayer, when I opened a devotional called, “My Utmost for His Highest.”

Matthew 10:27 says, “Jesus says, ‘What I tell you in darkness, that speak ye in light: and what ye hear in the ear, that preach ye upon the housetops.’” Wow.   He pulled the veil of darkness over me to TELL ME something.    And that “something” is meant to be SHARED….when I’m in the light.  

He taught me a lesson for two different groups of Christians:
(1) Either you’re discouraged by the DARKNESS of your circumstances –OR—(2) You’re basking in the Son-shine of His presence.

February 17, 2010

"Play Me"

An instrument...this could be something used by a doctor to perform surgery, a tool used by a mechanic, or anything that a skilled person uses to perform a specific task.   Even in music, an instrument is used by a skilled person to perform--or to make beautiful music.

When I read Romans 6:13, "Neither yield ye your members as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin: but yield yourselves unto God, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness unto God," I imagine the Lord as being a skilled Musician.   Then I apply this verse to my heart.  Am I an instrument in His hands?  I want to be an instrument in His hands used to make beautiful music.   Do you? 

Of course, instruments require some tuning every once in a while.  Thankfully His ears listen to me every day and can tell when something is not "sounding right."   In order for Him to make something beautiful out of my life, He needs to tune me first.   I need to yield to His every "twisting and turning" of the strings, and let Him "pluck the strings" until they sound just right.   After I have yielded myself completely to Him in the tuning process, He will begin to make music out of my life.  

Tuning takes time----so if you find yourself in the process of being "plucked," just be patient.  Sooner or later the Skilled Musician will begin to make a sweet sound from you, others will be blessed, and the Master Musician will be glorified in the masterpiece He has created!

The key is to just yield..and whisper, "Just Play Me."

February 14, 2010

"No Good"

With the Super Bowl being just a week ago, and a son who finished playing his first season of football, it comes as no suprise to me that terms like "Touchdown," "Fourth and Ten," and "No Good!" are still fresh in my mind.  But what in the world do these terms have to do with being a Christian? 

Of course, we all know we're running a race....Hebrews 12:1 reminds us of that---Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us.   The object of football is to make as many touchdowns as your team can...Get the most points on the scoreboard.  Play to WIN, not just FINISH.  Everyone finishes...but only one team WINS.

February 12, 2010

How to "Think Straight" Today

Proverbs 16:3 says, "Commit thy works unto the Lord, and thy thoughts shall be established."  Who doesn't need help "thinking straight" these days?  Could it be that simple?  Wake up to a new day, and say, "Here I am Lord...I've got so much to do today...so much is expected of me, by so many people.   I can not do this without some outside help!  Instead of taking it upon myself to do, I hereby ROLL all of this onto YOUR shoulders!  Now, please honor Your Word--You promised if I roll my works onto You, that You will in turn HELP ME THINK STRAIGHT."   

No matter what you've got "on your plate" for today---rejoice!  The Bible teaches us to "rejoice in everything."    Since He has offered His limitless help, put your HOPE in God.  Then what?  
W A I T patiently for Him.  Be still, and listen.  If you yield to the still small voice of His dear Holy Spirit, He will then orchestrate your thoughts in such a way that by evening's tide, you'll be amazed at the beautiful concerto your day turned out to be!  

Proverbs 16:3~~What a promise!  This is a promise we can take to the "Bank of Faith" and cash it in, immediately ready for withdrawal! Cha-ching!  

So remember:      Rejoicing in Everything 
                         +  Hoping in God = 
                            V I C T O R Y in Jesus!