Friday Night Reflection: Gratitude

Heavenly Father,

Thank you for answering my prayer of protection today. I know you were there with me and I am grateful for your presence.

I don’t know where the road ahead is leading..but I trust you to guide my footsteps.

You see everything that has happened before and what is to come.

Please give me your peace. Release my anxiety…help me not to carry this burden any further than the end of this post. Allow me to sleep peacefully and wake rested and refreshed. Your will is all I want. Help me to see You in everything I face – your answer and opinion are the only things that count.

Thank YOU, too for answering my other prayer this week. Your answer is proof that you do work in the silence(s) and I believe you made your answer very clear, just as I requested.

If I am to write Lord, be it the blog or any other project you have in mind…create the pathway and the means for it to happen: I am listening for you.

Bless us this weekend with hearts full of appreciation, kindness and love. Allow us all to be a beacon of your light and love – bless each of us with the power to shine.

In Jesus Name, Amen.

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Prayer – Listen for His Voice! He is calling you…

Holy Father,

Here I am again, kneeling before you and looking for the words. I’m not worthy of your grace, but am changed by simply “being” in your presence.

I sit looking at the cursor on my laptop while the world outside this window shifts into high gear. Make the words on this page speak volumes to those who are in desperate need of your love. There is more than enough of you to go around.

I saw two videos this week and I have been arguing with myself about whether or not to post them. You know the ones I am referring to. Too many hurting souls are questioning your sovereignty, your very existence. I will not allow myself to be affected by the doubters. My job is here and continues…

The best I can do (and I believe what you expect from me) is to listen to your nudges and transcribe those thoughts right here. So, here I go:

PRAY TOGETHER:

Lord, Soften the hearts of those who have hardened themselves to you

Allow those, who eyes have been blinded by the lies of the enemy, to uncover the truth, Your Truth

For those who are facing their last days, their last hours on this earth…help them to find you and seek your grace (better one day in your courts than a thousand elsewhere!) Psalm 84:10

In the busy-ness of life, when we allow ourselves to get caught up with what doesn’t really matter; bring us back to you.

We will all meet you at some point, Lord. Prepare us for that day, but in the meantime guide us to your presence. The only place where peace can truly be found.

Thank you for your grace and mercy, and the many blessings we see – and even those we don’t.

In Jesus name, Amen

( I have loved Casting Crowns since I first heard them a couple of years ago…but I’d never seen this video until I was led to post it – I screen every video before I include it – I didn’t realize I hadn’t understood all the lyrics until I saw them in this video. Take the time to watch it…let it lift you up – feel free to sing along with it! I’m not embarrassed to say, it brought tears to my eyes.)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Reflections: accountability & blessings

Time to try something new.

It’s 9:30pm and my eyes are SCREAMing sleep (sorry for the yell) but all I can think of is what transpired (or didn’t today).

I read my Jesus Calling devotional (AND cross referenced Sarah’s footnotes!)

I blogged..once or twice? That would make this up to my 3rd entry – (cool ;P, but not necessarily stellar)

I went on a middle school tour – overwhelming.

I picked up a library book (Pagan Christianity), which I have been waiting a couple of weeks to dig into (digging yet to be done)

I pleaded with my (android) phone not to completely lose power…while using my “nav app.” I also spent more time than I should have using it unproductively. And by admitting that here…it is my incentive to stop doing so. I want to be a good steward of my time; because time isn’t something I can BUY Back!

I mention the above because while most of these are all worthy and necessary activities, I have 3 specific goals I’d really like to work toward this year:

Read. Write. Blog.

Like anyone, I could blog til the cows come home. But what I say here, I want to mean something. I want THE Word of God to come pouring out and drench my keyboard. I want to make life richer, for myself as the writer and you as the reader. Which means I need to stay grounded in scripture. Those words are my living water…without them, my writing will suffer.

Organize, Purge and Reset:

this is to diligently get my house cLEANed out. It’s one thing to attend funerals and it’s another to inherit item(s) that need a new home. I really don’t need any of it…but now to figure out what to do with what someone else left behind. Besides, how much is really enough? (Rhetorical question here: Matthew 6:19)

My embroidery hobby.

I love to embroider and I need to turn things up a notch. If I could get my house “in order” I might be able to pursue this secondary passion and make something of it. But only if it’s God’s will…

Seek Christ

I am searching for him in the everyday “mundane”-ness and passing along whatever I can…to light the path behind me and keep me on the straight ‘n narrow!

But while I am searching..while I am caught up in the to-do’s, must do’s and chore lists – I have to remember that the only way through the fog or the darkness is to trust Him. Where my field of vision is obscured from seeing the future; his is not. He can see everything concerning me from the beginning of my life, up to my last breath. He didn’t send me here to go it alone. He put me here to see things from his perspective and weave them into my daily life.

So, what would I change about today – looking into tomorrow? Pray more. Worry less. Trust and then dive in when He cues me.

In reflection, it really is that simple.

How were you blessed today? Were you a blessing to someone else? How? I’d love to know, share it with me and leave a comment.

Sleep well friends and remember, we are surrounded by blessings – Good night 😉

Prayer: Forget the crawl…MoVe!

I woke my youngest up this morning only to hear…”I don’t want to go to school.”  Hmm…it’s waaayyyto early in the year to be saying that. This is the first day of the 2nd week!

Though, I empathize with her. I feel like I am trying to juggle so much right now, don’t we all feel that way? Most of the juggling I have brought on myself: The “I want to’s” easily outweigh the “I need to’s and I have to’s”

So Dear God, since I am made in your image…since your spirit dwells within me, what would YOU have me do today? What actions and words should I do that would put a smile on your face?

Your opinion is really THE only thing that matters. Without your grace, I am a fish out of water. Without your presence filling up this thirsty soul, my success rate will be horribly minimized. Give me the fire of holy purpose to move in the direction YOU desire for ME. I can’t see beyond the tip of my nose to know what is in-store so I am relying on you to gently guide and direct me.

I’m tired of fighting the good fight without Your armor Lord. Cleanse me, cover me, sanctify me. Make me WHAT I need to be, to do what I must do. You are the Light and peace I crave…so bless me in abundance with those gifts I am not capable of giving myself. Speak to me…allow me to hear you and see you. Thank you for today, your breath of life….your son and His mercy. Fill our hearts and minds with your Holy Fire and set us in motion

Jesus, You ARE awesome.

Amen

Shine His light, Make a difference: Get out the and get Move-ing with Mercy Me

 

 

Regrets No More

Aunt Ginny’s casket sat in the middle of the church. Surrounded by friends and family we bid her farewell. I hadn’t seen her in 20 years. I blame myself for that. I certainly can’t blame God (well, I could…but that’s pointless)

The June funeral and the spontaneous trip to Boston put me in a precarious position.

Why do I blame myself for not having visited her in 20 years?

Because the last time I saw her, in ’93, I was over the moon excited about moving from the West Coast..to the East Coast. And I let that dream vaporize. I still believe the move would have given me a new lease on life, a new life on the horizon…because I had finally found my rhythm.

But life got in the way. I am still working with God on understanding how and why my life turned out the way it did.

Regret is something we all have to face, big or small. At some level, at some point in time…we WILL have to face ourselves and take a hard look at the choices we made. I’m pretty sure it’s something that happens when we’re facing our last moments of breath on this earth. A tough time to wonder as we’re letting go…..

The deal is – regret is self inflicted. Regret is NOT holy. Regret is meant to frustrate and distract us…regret is the work of the enemy.

One of my biggest moment’s of regret arrived in December of 2011. My only sister who was nearly 21 years older than I, died suddenly. She lived alone. We hadn’t spoken for almost 12 years. We had little to nothing in common; but she was still my sister. We didn’t agree on most things. But we were still sisters. We didn’t know how to get along together. Because of the wide generation gap, we had nothing in common. But the STING of that phone call that day will live in my memory..forever.

It’s going on two years since I got the bad news…and I realize this life has to count for something. Not just because I want it to. Looking back I can already see how so much of my life is not an accident (regardless of anyone else’s oerspective)

Why were we estranged? She thought it was up to me to make the first move of reconciliation. I didn’t think it was up to me to shoulder that responsibility. I suppose I should have sucked in my humility…and called a truce. But, I didn’t because I was certain she would tell me yet again..that I wasn’t good enough, or smart enough, the “accident” for all intensive purposes.

But that’s all water under the bridge now. It’s too late to ask. I don’t fault her or begrudge her for what she said and I’m willing to bet she was really hurting, too. More than anything, I feel sorry for her and I HAVE to learn from the lessons she left behind…the lessons I am learning from all those people whose funerals I have gone to.

I get ONE shot to live, breath, love AND forgive. One chance to learn who I am and why God created me.

It’s up to me to learn about Jesus, the man and understand who He is as the Savior. Jesus had every reason to resent his enemies; but he didn’t. He came here with a mission. He was keenly aware of that mission and he knew who he was. Jesus didn’t have to change because he was already perfect.

The difference for me is that I must change…not how I feel about my history, but how I’m going to approach the here and now, this moment. Am I going to seek Jesus in the every day and try to follow his model or will I subject myself to regret?

Yes, yesterday turned out much differently than I thought it would but by focusing on God’s blessing, I can say goodbye to regret and never look back. I crave peace, joy and restoration.

Don’t get caught up in the devil’s snare of regret. Don’t let regret sap you of your potential…give your regret to God; He can give you Peace, Joy and arms full of Love….

Let it Go!

 

 

 

Prayer: God’s Puzzle

Dear Lord,

Thank you for the gift of today, for the moment of now. For giving me breath to speak your word and vision to find you in it. I often forget how easy it is to get caught up in burden as I watch others “run around” in circles; please help me to stay grounded and reach out for your hand!

We live life as if it is a complex puzzle that WE have to unscramble, when the truth is the enemy WANTS us to believe we must unscramble our own puzzle instead of SEEKING you. The truth is, we are part of the puzzle you created and without your help, we won’t be able to finish what we weren’t meant to start WITHOUT you….

Thank you for your love, that fills me…lifts me up and wraps itself around me. Wherever the storms of life rise up on my path, You are with me. Although it’s often hard to feel you when the darkness closes in, when it does your angels hover close. I am NeVer alone. WE ARE NEVER alone

Whatever words I speak today, use me. Help me to hear your voice and shower me with your wisdom. Discernment is the key I seek, I ask for your blessing of wisdom and discernment.

I’m looking for you everywhere today, Father…show me who you are.

Amen

Avoiding the Proof – A line in the Sand

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I may as well just admit it. I am avoiding writing or blogging, even though I promised myself I would try a little everyday. I need to lean on God even MORE now…

I have returned to my hobby and crafting room and am working as quickly as I can to get embroidery projects finished and “out of the way.” I’m fit to be tied trying to clean up a disastrous mess. I need to SEE results. I need to take something that APPEARS out of control and bring control to it.

The challenges of life are confusing the heck out of me, I’m searching for some organized “madness.” I am needing to do something where I HAVE to make the decisions but I don’t have to spiritually analyze it to progress. It just gets done.

I am embarrassed to say it but..spiritual growth is hard work, it’s downright exhausting…

After a nearly two year run of searing losses I am plumb tuckered out from grieving. Now, I am watching a situation unfold where someone has/is intentionally rejecting the idea of Jesus. I am certain this person considers the notion of Jesus something out of fairy tales and believes his overflowing grace card is mythical. I can’t change his mind for him. All I can do is live life as God expects – I shouldn’t let it bother me but my soul is heavy. Why?

The eyes are the windows to the soul and I’ve shuddered to see the reflection in those eyes that just won’t let Jesus in.

I AM Frustrated. For the first time ever, I’m beginning to sense what God is feeling when people turn away from him. The consequences may not seem obvious, but with basic knowledge of The Word, such a decision determines a terrible demise. To consciously decide that what we can SEE in the nOw is all there is and anything we can’t see doesn’t exist…is fallacy.

I’ve been so overwhelmed trying to make sense of this the past week… I have tried earnestly to find reason in the logic utilizing “The World” around me:

*I gaze the heavens and look at the clouds. They are “there” visually, but if you were in a plane and flew through them, they literally disappear into nothingness. BUT the clouds are still tHERE….

*The wind blows, and we FEEL it but we can’t see it. It acts as if it were a ghost. Nothingness, but it’s still tHERE.

*My heart beats, I can’t see it. But it’s still tHERE.

*Thunder rolls, it may shake your home..you can hear it, but you can’t see it.. it’s still tHERE.

Frankly, I’m less interested in the evidence about why they happen than I am about the fact that they happen at all.

The doubting Thomases need “proof,” but I would beg to differ that even then (based on the nature of man) that any proof would be a short-lived because for those who lack faith, “proof” is elusive and only leads to needing “more proof.” )And endless cycle that cannot be satiated without God’s mercy)

Avoiding “knowing” God is telling God you don’t need Him, or Heaven…even if you are just procrastinating

Religion is man made – a trap – don’t be fooled and don’t let the enemy confuse you. There is more to this life than what we SEE and religion won’t cut it when eternal assignments are handed out.

Faith IS believing without having seen. Even if you can’t see God, He can SEE YOU

Faith is based on Grace…and Grace is a GIFT. Get over your confusion and doubt – it really is THAT simple.

It doesn’t have to be scary. It just has to be real. Are you ready to get Real with God? Getting Real with Him will be the most important decision YOU ever MAKE.

Jesus is not a myth.. are you really willing to gamble your soul?

Ultimately, by waiting for “proof” you are drawing a line in the sand…

I’m gonna let Ten Avenue North to take it from here: