March 29, 2011

The Case of the Lost Zebra

A pic of my daughter all dressed up with her
special lil zebra that she's had since she was 2,
all dressed up too.
But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was on him; and with his stripes we are healed.  Isaiah 55:3
Well, my last blog was talking about spring cleaning, and donating things.   Have you ever accidentally donated something that was NOT intended to be donated?   Even worse---it was something special to your child?   (GULP)      Well....tis with a sigh, a HUGE sigh that I write tonight's post. 

Over the weekend, my husband and I were in the process of switching the kids' rooms. . . just giving everyone a fresh start.  They were so excited. . . and we were too, because we were able to get rid of things, donate things, vacuuming the entire floor at once...spring cleaning at it's "best."   Anyway, moving furniture between two rooms was quite a mess at first. . .so to keep things "as organized as possible" I put my daughter's special stuffed animals (each have a special story of how they came to be a part of her life) in one spot...a bag.   And of course, somehow in the process of moving furniture, unbeknownst to me, the bag got mixed in with the "to be donated" bags. . ..and the rest is history.      

(Probably not the best page in our history books tonight.)  :o( 
Sunday afternoon, the to-be-donated bags were taken, (INCLUDING that special bag) to the thrift store.  I had no idea that my husband had taken it too. . .and oh how badly we both felt when we realized it tonight, make that~when SHE realized it!   The tears, the drama....the grief. . . the helplessness I felt for her tonight.  . a few of those lil animals had been a part of her life ever since she was two years old.   Even I felt a sense of loss.   What's a mom to do?  I couldn't even console her.     Well, while dear dad tried to console his lil girl ("I'll buy you some more"), her brother and I were in the other room, just praying for wisdom, calmness and comfort. . . .trusting that the Lord would work this out somehow for our good and His glory.   As the prayers are going UP, I hear her asking if I can go to the thrift store tomorrow morning to just see if any are still there.    Hmmm...
She asks a question, the Lord begins to teach a lesson. . .

That's when the Lord began to remind me that He understands what it feels like to lose something special.  We were made by Him, for His pleasure, to have fellowship and a loving relationship with Him.  When Adam and Eve fell in the Garden of Eden, and their natures were jelled in the sinful condition that we all find ourselves born with,  mankind's fellowship with God was broken.   Can you imagine the pain and sorrow of losing such a dear relationship?!   God used to come and walk with them in the cool of the evening.  How He must have looked forward to talking with them!  We are more precious to our Heavenly Father than any amount of treasured keepsakes we can ever possess on earth.   Just as I will go to the thrift store tomorrow morning, in search of the little lost zebra, I'm even willing to buy it back, I will remember our Creator, and how He willingly offered Himself as payment for our sin---to redeem us, to buy us back, and rescue us from an eternal life apart from we can once again be treasured and bring pleasure to God, our Creator.  

What about the feeling of separation and grief when our Heavenly Father had to turn His back on His dear Son, while He was taking our punishment,
paying OUR penalty for our sin??   

Isn't it ironic that her special stuffed animal is a ZEBRA---
and by our Savior's STRIPES we are healed?? 
What a way to always REMEMBER this lesson.
As far as the grief my daughter feels (and we too feel for her) I can thank God for understanding how we feel, and I can trust that as HER Heavenly Father, He will work this all out for her good...may He draw her closer to Himself, and reveal to her the very anguish He feels when He searches the world over for a heart that's willing to trust Him.  "For the Son of Man came to seek and to save that which was lost."  Luke 19:10  May this cause her (and all of us) to appreciate what He has done for all of mankind, right down to the personal level~ for you and for me!   
He's reaching out to you. 
Won't you accept God's priceless gift of eternal life through Jesus? "God, have mercy on me, I'm a sinner. 
Save me!"

I'm not sure what I'll find at the thrift store tomorrow....but the lesson that has already been found through this is much more valuable than any lost bag of treasured keepsakes---and this is coming from a "sentimental mom of two dear children."   

Dear Father, we can thank You, even in the disappointments, and heartaches of life, for we know that You are working in the midst of these circumstances to reveal something beautiful about Yourself to our hearts.  Please wipe away the "Temporary Tears" and give us a clearer vision of deeper truths here.   The truth about the Almighty power of Your Redeeming Love and mercy. . . the truth that You understand our grief, You understand our losses, and You care.  One day You can throw out these bottles of Temporary Tears, but for now, we know that You bottle each tear drop up . . .how gentle and loving You are!!   You love children, Father, so I KNOW without a doubt that You are not going to leave our daughter brokenhearted for long.  You will bind up her heart, and make it stronger.  You will show Yourself strong to her, and to me---to ALL of us, Father, for our hearts are perfect (quiet) towards You. .  .we rest in the knowledge that You do all things well, even when You allow us to make mistakes.  You allow this for a reason.  We look to You to receive glory, much glory, from this.  Thank You for coming down to this sin-cursed-earth and paying the Ultimate Price for our redemption!  Thank You for drawing us to You, Father, by Your Holy Spirit.  We pray for Your Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with His power to tell others about Your redeeming grace and mercy!!  Please open our eyes to valuable lessons, even in times like this.  Every "vexation" or "heartbreak" is a wonderful opportunity to grow, to experience Your power, to die to self, and allow Your Son to live gloriously through us!  Enable us to take full advantage of these situations! For Your Glory, and in Jesus' powerful name we pray, Amen.  

"With God as my Guide, the unknown becomes a challenge. . .
  There is nothing He cannot redeem and turn to lasting good." 
                               Author Unknown

March 25, 2011

Spring Fervor

Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that you may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much. 
James 5:16 (American KJV)

As I hear the birds chirping, and see the sun shining in the bright blue sky, I begin to feel the symptoms of the yearly "SpRiNg Fever!"  Hip Hip Hooray!  Time to open windows, let the sunlight pour in, and bask in the warm breeze that blows through our homes and right into our hearts!   Can I get a "witness?"  LOL

Signs and Symptoms that I have Spring Fever include, but are not limited to, a strong desire:
  • to clean closets
  • to wash windows
  • to wash and wax the car
  • to air out the house
  • to donate, donate, donate all the STUFF that has piled up over the past year
  • to clean the house, from top to bottom, inside and out~including the garage (LOL) 
  • to take the bulky winter clothes and pack them away (since I don't have lots of closet space) and break out the not-so-bulky, can-fit-in-my-dresser drawers and closets-oh-so-nicely spring and summer wardrobe!   (*which may produce a burning desire to go out and take a brisk walk and tone up, just in case I've had a tad too much comfort food during the winter months.)  LOL  
  • to look for new, lighter recipes, for meals that seem "light and SpRiNgY."
  • to start over, with enthusiasm & a "spring in my step," leaving the cold winter behind
Anyway, Spring fever is all about an "itchy feeling" that "fresh air and freedom" are around the corner!  I'll be getting out, opening up, and washing away the blah-doldrums-of-the-dreary-days, until there's not a trace of winter left!

I wonder, too, if we can have a bit of Spring Fervor!?!?  I thought of the last part of verse 16 in James 5.  "The effectual FERVENT prayer of a righteous man availeth much."   But when I looked at the first part it gave me a moment to pause.    "Confess your faults to each other. . . pray for each other, that you may be healed."   Is there anything that we have in our closets that need to be "dragged out into the Light?"  Is there something that needs to be confessed, forgiven, and forgotten?   The word "fault" is defined as "missing the mark."  Have we "missed the mark" during the recent dark, winter months?  ~or~ Have we been experiencing a long, dark winter, for far too long?   

It's time to bask in the Promise of Spring!  Allow His Son-Light to come into your heart!  It's time for a fresh start!  A new life!  And there's no better time for a new life in Christ, then right here, at the onset of spring! 
The definition of FERVOR is:

1: intensity of feeling or expression
Dear Sister and Brother in Christ, are we living our lives with intensity of feeling~intense adoration to our Lord?  Are we living and expressing our intense love for God with others?  Have we even allowed the Holy Spirit to nurture an intense love for God (*and others) in our hearts?   Maybe we've allowed something in our past to darken our hearts, causing us to "live in the cold winter," couped up inside, not free to be who He wants us to be.  I must confess, I've not been allowing the Holy Spirit to really nurture an intense--an INTENSE love for God.  Intense denotes burning, passion, unquenchable.   Hmmmm.    To produce such strong feelings can only be done through the power of the Holy Spirit!
Let's confess our faults to one another, and pray for each other- - -when we bring our faults into the Light of God's Holiness, He ushers in new life, a new-found freedom in Christ!  No more darkness, but warmth, light and new life, budding with promise! For in him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of your own poets have said, For we are also his offspring. (Acts. 17:28, KJV) We are His offspring!   Basking in the Son-light, the Light of God's Son, Jesus, looking unto Him, the Author and Finisher of our faith, will produce a new life in us~~ a life reflecting His image!  What a blossom we are to be! 

I hope that as you and I hear the birdies singing, praising God for the warmth they are enjoying, this "rush of spring" will stir up in us an intense feeling to Hire some Help for Spring Cleaning in our hearts!   This of course, is the work of the Holy Spirit!
Oh Father, thank You for the promise of Spring!  And what a promise it is!  You have promised to do the work in us that You started!   And even though we go through seasons~~ sometimes of growth; of deep sleep--where no growth is evident; and then a season of bearing fruit-- we know that for every thing there is a season.   And this is the season of new hope and new life.   May our prayers be effectual and fervent, full of intense feelings of new-found freedom in Your Son!  We commit this season of spring to You, knowing that this job of spring cleaning is just too much for us.  Through Your Holy Spirit, search us, shine Your heavenly light into our hearts and reveal the areas of work that You will perform.  Thank You that we don't have to do the work.  You just want us to be still and trust, and obey You.   As the March winds blow, stirring up the curtains in our windows, allow Your Holy Spirit to breathe fresh new life into our hearts--blow away the dust and dirt, the things we are allergic to, awaken our hearts!  Create within our hearts a spring FERVOR.  Increase Your power in our prayer lives.  Help us be better intercessors on our knees for our family and friends, and for the world, who needs You and Your gift of Salvation through Jesus.  The only way to make our prayer lives more effective is to cleanse us and make us righteous through Your Son.  Bring to light the areas that need to be confessed; grant us the courage to confess it, and the freedom to walk in the newness of life through Your Son!  In Jesus' Name, Amen.

March 21, 2011

Lookin' up

Photo by Benjamin Earwicker
I lift up my eyes to the hills---where does my help come from?  My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth.    Psalm 121: 1, 2

Just a note really quick. . .I glanced at my calendar to see what tomorrow's verse is and just wanted to share it with you all since I'll be in clinical all day and unable to post anything.

Looking at the verse above, and just taking it apart, chewing on each little word or phrase gets my mind to thinking:   If I have to lift up my eyes to the hills, let's think about it. . . .that means that my eyes are originally looking downward, right?  And when I do lift my eyes upward, if I see the hills, that must mean one thing:  I'm currently down in a valley; and if that wasn't bad enough~~ I'm totally  surrounded by overwhelming hills.   Just their size alone would make me feel trapped, with no way "up" to higher ground.

Are you in a valley?   Do you wonder where your help will come from?   Well, our scripture tells us that OUR help comes from the Lord.  When you lift your eyes up to the hills, let me encourage you to look beyond the hills.  Look past the hills and toward the sky.  Look to the heavens and see the many stars--- too numerous to count, yet the Lord has named each of them!   The Lord Who has not only created every single star, but also named them, is the One Who is our help

Is anything too difficult for Him?   No!     So whatever the circumstances of your "valley"~it is not too difficult for Him to handle and HELP you.    Just lift your eyes---don't look around at "ground zero."  Look UP----past those hills, and towards the heavens---and allow the marvel of God's creation to reassure you of His almighty creative power.   This same creative power, the power to make something out of nothing, can surely take your circumstances and create something beautiful from it!  Just look up to Him.  Not only can He help us get through this valley, but He can also take us to higher ground!  The Sovereign LORD is my strength; He makes my feet like the feet of a deer, He enables me to tread on the heights.   Habakkuk 3:19 (NIV)

One more thought:  You may be thinking, "Yes, but what if I've gone too far in this valley?  Maybe I've brought this valley on myself?" ~or~  "What if I'm not even a child of God?"  Well, my answer to you would be God's answer:  "I am the LORD, the God of all mankind. Is anything too hard for me?" (Jeremiah 32:27)    And then "Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: for I am God, and there is none else."  (Isaiah 45:22)  God IS your answer.  Just stop looking down, in your valley, at your overwhelming circumstances and simply look up to Him, and to no one else~~for no one else can or will save you. 

Hugs to you all!

Dear Father. . . it's in the valley that You restore our souls.  Some of us have been in our valleys for quite some time, and we are trusting You to continue to work through these circumstances to make us more like You, to make us one with You.  It's just that sometimes we need strength to keep going.  So that is why You have encouraged us to look up---to lift our eyes from the rubble of the "ground zero" and be inspired by Your creation.  Please allow Your Holy Spirit to lift our spirits up in praise to worship You, as we lift our eyes in faith to You, believing that You are going to create something beautiful out of our lives.  We thank You for Your promises that are too numerous to even count~and as You have named each star, each of Your promises have OUR names on them.  It's just up to us to claim them.  Please help us to do that.  In Jesus' Name, Amen.

March 12, 2011

What's in a Name?

"My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest." 
Exodus 33:14

Have you ever experienced a time of darkness in your life?  A time where you knew God was with you, because His Word promises He will "never leave us, nor forsake us," yet, for some reason darkness had seemed to obscure His light, and you could not sense His presence?   Something seemed "wrong," because, after all, God is Light and in Him is no darkness.   I've been there, many times.  It seems that presence of God is an experience we can sense, and sensing His presence tends to give us peace.   He wants us to "taste and see" that He is good.    Tasting and seeing God's goodness is an actuality.  Experiencing God is not just a "belief" in Him, but an actuality.  

For those of us who have tasted and seen His goodness by experiencing God's glorious and reassuring presence, any time He pulls the veil over our eyes and we can no longer sense His presence can be very unsettling, can't it?  

Moses had tasted and seen God's goodness and felt God's reassuring presence, and here, in our text, God had told Moses because of the stubbornness of the children of Israel, He would not go with them.  Oh, He would do all He had promised, except they would not have His presence with them.   

In our early walks with God, we tend to seek God for what He can DO for us.  What are the blessings He will bestow upon us?   We seek after Him for His blessings and the promises He has given.   But, after a while, sometimes a very LONG while (and many storms,) everything about "us" is changed---we're essentially stripped down, like the paint on a ship---battered, chipped and now the vessel is completely exposed.   We begin to find that what we really need~or make that WHO we really need~ is God Himself, and not what He can DO for us.    We begin to value the very presence of our God.  To go anywhere without Him (or not abiding in His presence) is out of the question.  (Even if we've been disobedient to Him, He's still with us, but we will sense a "quietness" from Him because the fellowship has been broken.)

If you're in a place of quiet, darkness, and it seems that He's pulled the veil over your eyes so that His presence is not "sensed," do not despair.   For we see something special here in what God told Moses.    

In verse 15 of Exodus 33, Moses tells the Lord, "If You will not go with us then do not send us."  (i.e., "I would rather have us be void of Your blessings if it means not having Your presence be with us.")  Moses goes on to say "How will any one know that You are pleased with me and your people?"  (How many times have we been "through the ringer" and others "assumed" God was angry with us for some "wrong doing?" ??)  Well, God reassures Moses, “I will do the very thing you have asked, because I am pleased with you and I know you by name.” (verse 17.) 

Did you catch that?  God tells Moses "I know you by name."  If you continue to read the passage, you'll find out that Moses asks God to "show me Your glory."

Are you going through something so terribly distressing, others may be even wondering, like Job's friends, that you've done something wrong to "deserve" God's wrath.  But yet, your heart remained ever true to God and His plan for your life that your main concern was for God to "GET THE GLORY" out of even THIS situation. 

God will get the glory!  He knows YOU by name, dear one.  And the first step to Him revealing His glory and allowing you to know Him more intimately is of course to tell you His name God tells Moses (in verse 19) “I will cause all my goodness to pass in front of you, and I will proclaim my name, the LORD, in your presence..."

The purpose for our times of darkness is for God to reveal His glory to us and bring us into a more intimate relationship with Himself (so that we "may be one" with Him.)   John 17 records Jesus' prayer, and in verse 11  He prays for US: "I will remain in the world no longer, but they are still in the world, and I am coming to you. Holy Father, protect them by the power of[b] your name, the name you gave me, so that they may be one as we are one."  "Protect them by the power of Your NAME."  God proclaims His name to Moses, and there is POWER in His name.   

How did God introduce Himself, by name, to Moses?  Exodus 34:6 tells us:  "6 And he passed in front of Moses, proclaiming, The LORD, the LORD, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness, 7 maintaining love to thousands, and forgiving wickedness, rebellion and sin. Yet he does not leave the guilty unpunished; he punishes the children and their children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation.”

Do you want God to reveal His glory in and through your life, even in these trying circumstances?  Is your heart longing for a closer relationship with Him?  Are you sensing a quietness from Him, as if He's pulled the veil over your face?  LISTEN,for He is about to speak.  He is covering your face momentarily, so that your ears can be more attuned to His voice.  Let God bring you into a closer walk with Him by telling you His name.  Read His very own description of Himself in Exodus 34:6-7 slowly.  Allow His Holy Spirit to speak to you~~to "search your heart" and make sure that there is nothing there that has broken your fellowship with Him. If not, allow Him to convey the power of His name to your heart.  And be assured that once He does, He will lift His hand from your eyes and you will see more clearly. God told Moses, “There is a place near me where you may stand on a rock. (*For us, this Rock is Jesus.) 22 When my glory passes by, I will put you in a cleft in the rock and cover you with my hand (*if He covers us, surely, we'll not see anything at the time.)until I have passed by. 23 Then I will remove my hand and you will see my back; but my face must not be seen.” You too will see His back.  Why His back? Because as your Shepherd, He will be leading you, and you will follow. He's about to lead you into a deeper relationship with Himself.  You will no longer wear a veil over your face when you are in His presence.  Moses' face was so luminous from God's glory, that he had to cover his face when he was with the people.  However, whenever He entered into God's presence, Moses removed the veil. (Ex. 34:35) 
He is with you, no matter if you "sense His presence or not."  He has promised His presence will go with you and He WILL give you rest.    "Rest" is not "nap time"---but, like in music, a rest is "a moment to pause."   He will give you a rest--a moment to pause and reflect on His goodness and glory, on His faithfulness and His compassion, on His forgiveness, on the very Power of His Name! 

What a powerful message we find here in this exchange between Moses and God.  You and I can share this very experience, for God never changes.  He is the same, yesterday, today and forever!  If we are lacking in our relationship with Him it is only because we have not asked Him to reveal Himself to us.  "Ye have not, because ye ask not." 

"Father, reveal to us Your glory, so that You will be glorified in and through our lives."

Father, we ask You, in the unfathomable power of Your Name, to reveal Yourself to us in a mighty way.  Show US Your glory, Father.  Not so that others will see us, Father.  No.  We will cover our faces with a veil when we are with others.  Father, we want others to not see OUR faces, but Yours, Father.  That is why Moses shielded his face, Father.  Your radiant glory was just so powerful, that the veil over his face was a reminder to the people that they are to worship You and not Moses, Father.  We THANK YOU that You know us by name, Father.  And yet, apart from You, there's not much to us, Father; but You still love us, and long to reveal Yourself to us in a mighty way.  Why?  So that others will see Your glory (not US), and be drawn to You, Father.  If only we knew You by the power of Your Name!   Thank You for this powerful lesson.  I pray Father that You would be lifted up in everything, including this blog.  By Your Holy Spirit's power lift up Your Name, and draw all men and women unto You.  
We pray this in the mighty power of Your Name, Amen.

March 9, 2011

Reflections from "71"

I was just having a little snack of Red Velvet Cake (yogurt LOL) and watching my Worship Network DVD, the Psalm Series. . . .and was taken captive by a particular segment.  The scriptures seemed to resonate with my heart.  On March 1, I turned the Big 4-0, and have just been reflecting lately. . .on life, and more importantly, my desire to reflect the Light of our Savior, The Son of God.  In order to reflect His pure Light, I must face Him, turn to Him, look UP to Him.  The side of the moon that we see all lit up in the dark night sky is the side that faces the sun.  So too must we FACE the Son, look to Him, in order to reflect His goodness and light.  "Look unto Me and be ye saved."   Of course, once we have looked unto Him for salvation, we must continue to look to Him in order to reflect His light to a lost and dying world.  

As I read the scripture passage on the DVD, listening to the music and seeing scenes of God's majesty through nature, my heart agreed completely with the words that David penned those many years ago.  The verses highlighted were on the DVD, however, this entire chapter is a testimony of my heart today. . . especially on the fact of getting older.  I'll add a little prayer in blue, just from my heart to the Lord.

One final note:   An "Ah-ha" moment for me was when I was awaiting the Scripture reference to show on the DVD, I was thinking, "Wouldn't it be funny if the passage of scripture was from Psalm 40, since after all, I'm reflecting on my recent 40th birthday and how my Lord has been with me from birth??"   Then the reference came up~ Psalm 71.   The year I was born:  1971.   Ah-ha!   :)  

Psalm 71

1 In you, LORD, I have taken refuge; let me never be put to shame. (*Thank You for being my refuge for the past 40 years.  For the rest of my life please let me never be put to shame, Father, for in that I would bring reproach upon Your name--and that's something I don't desire to do.) 

2 In your righteousness, rescue me and deliver me; turn your ear to me and save me.  
(*and I pray, open my ears to hear Your voice too, Father.)

3 Be my rock of refuge, to which I can always go; give the command to save me,
for you are my rock and my fortress. (*Like David, my heart is trusting You, Father.)

4 Deliver me, my God, from the hand of the wicked, from the grasp of those who are evil and cruel. (*keep me free from evil, Father, so that I may walk with You, freely and joyfully, for Your glory.)

5 For you have been my hope, Sovereign LORD, my confidence since my youth. (*Amen!) ~~and as David said, 'Selah.'   Thank You for being my hope and confidence.  Because You are sovereign, I can have full confidence that You are in control and that You have allowed every single circumstance to come into my life, for a reason. . .to make me more of a reflection of You.

6 From birth I have relied on you; you brought me forth from my mother’s womb. (*40 years ago.) I will ever praise you.

7 I have become a sign to many; (*we are living epistles, known and read of all men, Father.  We can not be a true example of Your love unless:) you are my strong refuge.

8 My mouth is filled with your praise, declaring your splendor all day long.
(*Thank You, Father, for filling my mouth with Your praise, for sometimes I find the words uneasy to express.  Thank You for placing Your praise within my mouth.  May I declare Your splendor all day long.)

9 Do not cast me away when I am old; do not forsake me when my strength is gone. (*each passing year I will become weaker, Father, but let this be a reminder for me to spiritually die to myself  and my reliance upon self, and place whole-hearted dependance upon You, Father, because:)

10 For my enemies speak against me; those who wait to kill me conspire together.  (*my enemy has a plan for my life too, Father.  He plans to steal, kill and destroy everything You have purposed for my life.)

11 They say, “God has forsaken him; pursue him and seize him, for no one will rescue him.”
(*For these reasons I pray, Father:)

12 Do not be far from me, my God; come quickly, God, to help me.

13 May my accusers perish in shame; may those who want to harm me
be covered with scorn and disgrace. (*I pray against the enemy in his plans to destroy not just Your purpose for my life, but for all my dear family and friends reading this as well.)

14 As for me, I will always have hope; I will praise you more and more. (*You are my hope, Father.)

15 My mouth will tell of your righteous deeds, of your saving acts all day long—
though I know not how to relate them all. (*even though I'm unable to understand everything, Father, please help me to continue to tell of Your goodness to all, and that You are the Savior for all mankind.)

16 I will come and proclaim your mighty acts, Sovereign LORD; I will proclaim your righteous deeds, yours alone. (*help me to only worship You, the Sovereign LORD; place Your praise within my heart and mouth, to share with others.)

17 Since my youth, God, you have taught me, and to this day I declare your marvelous deeds. (*thank You for being there for me, before I was even born, and the moment I arrived into this world, You smiled, heart bursting with love, for You knew the plans You had for me, and these plans serve a purpose of giving me a hope and a future.)

18 Even when I am old and gray, do not forsake me, my God, till I declare your power to the next generation, your mighty acts to all who are to come. (*I am older and much grayer than I was in my youth, Father, and You have not forsaken me.  Please allow me to declare Your power to the next generation!)

19 Your righteousness, God, reaches to the heavens, you who have done great things.  Who is like you, God? (*there is none other like You, God!)

20 Though you have made me see troubles,  many and bitter,  you will restore my life again; from the depths of the earth you will again bring me up. (*and thank You for the times of trouble, for You have and will continue to use them for Your glory and my good.)

21 You will increase my honor and comfort me once more. (*I pray that my heart will remain humble, at Your feet, for You have promised to give grace to the humble, and lift up the humble hearts, in due time.)

22 I will praise you with the harp for your faithfulness, my God; I will sing praise to you with the lyre, Holy One of Israel. (*thank You for allowing me the ability to play music, Father.  Play through my fingers, as an extension of Your praise that You've placed in my mouth, Father.  Open now, my mouth, for I have suffered from being mute, Father.  A blind man can not see, nor can a deaf person hear.  A mute person is unable to speak.  Father, I have been blind, deaf and must.  Please restore unto me my sight~may I see Your glory, Father; my hearing~may I hear Your Holy Spirit instructing me; and open my mouth so that I may speak continually of Your praise.)

23 My lips will shout for joy when I sing praise to you— I whom you have delivered. (*thank You, Father, for being there and delivering me on my first birthday, in 1971, and also on my spiritual birthday!  You have continued to deliver me from myself and sinful nature, and will continue to unleash Your power in my heart and life until my time on earth is over.)

24 My tongue will tell of your righteous acts all day long, for those who wanted to harm me have been put to shame and confusion. (*May this be the song of my life, Father.  That all those who wanted to harm me, throughout my life, will be put to shame.  I do pray for You to keep a guard over my tongue. . .and in the end, please touch many lives through this vessel, drawing others to Your Son, Jesus.  May others see Your glory reflecting in my life, Father.  Thank You, Father, for the past 40 years that you've given me.  Many times it's been like a wilderness journey. . .but I know that one day, maybe even soon, I shall enter into the Promised Land.  And it's all because of You. 
In Jesus' Name,

March 4, 2011

You're Qualified!

" thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in the kingdom of light."   Colossians 1:12

Just a note to say it's me. . .and it's Friday. . . another week has gone by. . . and I just wanted to thank you for checking in.   Have you ever felt like you were in a cave, for a time that seemed far too long?  But during that time, the Lord began to talk to you....Well, that's where I've been.  Seems like He's pulled me from the blog-o-sphere...and into a cave.  but it's not a scary cave.   It's more like a cozy one.  Just me and the Lord.  Oh yes, life continues to go on, and at full-throttle---but on another plane, He's teaching and speaking to my heart, so that's why I've not been bloggin' much as of lately.  Whenever He leads, I'll be back, because He tells us, "What I tell you in darkness, [that] speak ye in light: and what ye hear in the ear, [that] preach ye upon the housetops."  Matthew 10:27    So remember, whatever you're going through, if you're feeling like you've been pulled from the mainstream of "life as we know it," be really quiet, and listen, for He is about to tell you a secret~~but one not to be kept to yourself.  It's going to be a special lesson that He wants you to share with someone else.   Be looking and listening.  and certainly Be encouraged! 

Anyway, I just glanced at my calendar and saw the verse (Colossians 1:12) and thought, "Wow!  We've been qualified!"   Have you ever waited on a loan--maybe for your very first house?  A car?  Something special?    You wanted to know if you were "qualified" for the loan, right?    There are certain areas of need that must be met before you or I could be qualified for a loan from the bank, right?  Well, the Lord Himself has qualified us..He has met the criteria to give us not a loan----but an Inheritance!    The inheritance in the kingdom of light.   That word Light, is from the Greek word phṓs  which means:  "the manifestation of God's self-existent life; divine illumination to reveal and impart life, through Christ."  

Our lives are to be a source of light---and not just "any" light, but The Light---Christ's life in and through us.  We don't have to wait til we reach heaven to enjoy this inheritance.   If we surrender our hearts to Him, His Holy Spirit will give divine illumination that "reveals and imparts life" through Christ.  Others need to see a new life--the life of Christ in us, and not just on a blogging page, web page, my space page, facebook page, but in real 3-D life.  In the not-so-lovely-now-and-now.   It takes the bad times, the injustices of others, the trials, tests and storms~~all these things are the tools to polish us, to make us more like Him.   We can cash in on this divine inheritance---today!  We've been qualified!  No waiting, no need to pay back--for this is not a loan, but a gift!! A divine Gift, from our Heavenly Father, through His Son, Jesus. 

Oh Father, please help us to realize the inheritance You've given us---not just eternal life, to keep us out of hell, but to completely transform us!!  To make us more like Your Son!   To have His life revealed in and through us---so that others too may come to know You as their Savior.   Are we taking full advantage of this divine inheritance or are we taking this for granted?   You will enable us to live more godly lives if we only surrender our wills to Yours.   You take it upon Yourself to direct our steps, to order our paths. . .in order to take us to the final destination---our purpose on this earth.  Please help us to realize this and come to the fullest potential for Your glory, and be that one special person You placed us on this earth to be---a reflection of Your Light, through the power of Your Holy Spirit.  In Jesus' Name, Amen.