Thursday, November 20, 2014

WHEN CHANGE HURTS...

Ouch! I looked down and noticed my Hawaiian wooden bracelet with the beaded flowers was too tight. I pushed it further up and began rubbing the sore area. That's when I noticed the beautiful floral design had made a perfect imprint on my wrist. It looked very cool.

For hours it had been digging in, forming, shaping and molding it's image. I was unaware at first because it took time to wear it's way in. As it worked into the deeper layers, leaving it's mark, the pain increased, eventually drawing my attention to the area.

Often when the Lord is trying to work on areas in your life, it may feel the same way. When you first asked Jesus to come into your heart, changing, molding and shaping your life into His good and perfect image; you felt a joy and peace that may have brought you to tears. As time passed, the Lord slowly began to work from the inside; into the deep recesses of your hidden areas. The areas that needed to be healed, restored and renewed. Painful things may begin to arise. Jesus lovingly coaxes you to keep looking toward Him. Pray...read the Scriptures, sing/listen to songs of Praise; FILL UP...more of Him and less of you, right smack in the middle of it.

He is trying to bring you out of the bondage sin has placed on you, calling attention to certain areas. Right in the center of that pain, He is reshaping, reforming your life; removing all things that He has already suffered and died for. Jesus is reminding you to call on Him, allowing Him to take it out of you. The sting may feel unbearable at times. It's in that very moment that He reminds you to look toward His healing love...an all consuming refiners fire. The "old" you being made brand new. The person God created you to be.

In the midst of your trials, call on Jesus. Look to Him as though you search a dry, parched land for water. He is the living water. 
Jesus said: "He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.” John 7:38 
"but whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him will never thirst. But the water that I shall give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up into everlasting life.” John 4:14

Do not shrink back in the difficulties. Don't push away from the Lord...draw near to Him. Allow Jesus to change you. Cry out, "Lord, Jesus, come into my heart and make me more like You!" Right in the middle of your mess...He will bring healing, wisdom and peace as you yield to the Masters hand. He is doing a great and mighty work in you. Let Jesus imprint HIS IMAGE on your heart and soul. Call on HIM. 
"And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart." Galatians 6:9

He is the Savior of the world and loves you with an everlasting eternal love. Let Go. God has great plans for you. 
"Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord." Romans 8:37-39

Monday, November 17, 2014

My Will vs. God's Will


The call came in. I've been putting off the very thing the Lord is telling me to do. My procrastination isn't for a lack of want on my part. Change is just plain scary. Change and commitment to forever leaves me feeling nervous. I don't know why. I know it's right. I knew it the minute we began to walk down this journey. God's will. God's purpose. God's timing. But I drag my feet in weariness. Sometimes I want things my way. My will. My timing. So I stop. I wait until I feel emotionally ready to move.

But what if in the waiting, I'm not being faithful?

What if, instead, I choose to say, "Okay Lord, it doesn't feel like I can do this right now, but I will trust YOU!" Isn't that what faith is...a trust when it looks to be too much? Faith in God...who's plans, will and way are opened in the impossible. If I wait for my timing; for things to be just perfect; for my emotions to be perfectly ready...is that faith?

Am I trying to control the very thing the Lord is asking me to give to Him? Can I lay it down completely and let Him take over?

My will vs. God's Will.

The ever present battle.

My prayer today is that I let go. I hand it over to Jesus and walk out the steps of faith, no matter how shaky, feeble or weak I may feel. I know my safety is found in Him and nothing else.

Lord, help me to trust You more and give You complete control over every area, every scary situation, every unsure step. For it is in the letting go that You are found. An ever present pillar. A light in the darkness. A hope to the hopeless. Thank you Lord. I sit in the loving embrace of Your arms as You carry me to my final destination, wherever that may be and whatever that may look like. Your perfect will be done in and through me.

"So Jesus answered and said to them, “Have faith in God." Mark 11:22

"My son, give me your heart, And let your eyes observe my ways." Proverbs 23:26

"But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you." Matthew 6:33

"And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.’ This is the first commandment." Mark 12:30

"The Lord will give strength to His people; The Lord will bless His people with peace." Psalm 29:11

"He is the Rock, His work is perfect; For all His ways are justice, A God of truth and without injustice; Righteous and upright is He." Deuteronomy 32:4

Thursday, November 6, 2014

IS YOUR LIFE RIPE YET?

I look up and there it was, late into the sumer...bountiful fruit on thin tree branches; faithfully sprouting. Through spring and summer, the tree remained bare, but the owner knew if this tree was watered, pruned and cared for, the fruit would come. When it seemed too late in the season, the tree blossomed with a sweet, ripe, harvest. It produced food to fill the body with nature's nutrients. A blessing in the waiting...trust.

You too are created to bare fruit. The fruit of "Christ in you, the hope of glory."

"To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory:" Colossians 1:27


When you allow THE LORD to water, prune and care for your soul, HE fills you with HIS nourishing Word and Truth. This nutrient produces abundant fruit in your life. The cares, worries, doubt, pain, fear and sorrows, give way to the fruit of the Holy Spirit. This fruit fills you for the journey THE LORD has planned for you. A travel that requires constant Spiritual Food. The good stuff you need inside of you, the feeding of an often parched and weary soul. This fruit is invisible to the naked eye but seen through the nutrients it produces; "Love, Joy, Peace, Longsuffering, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness, Gentleness and Self-Control."

"But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control." Galatians 5:22-23

The true light of JESUS CHRIST shining first in you and then through you. You begin to do and say things that uplift, not tear down. You have strength to say, "Yes LORD, YOUR will," in the midst of tough situations you may be facing,

"saying, “Father, if it is Your will, take this cup away from Me; nevertheless not My will, but Yours, be done.” Luke 22:42

You know that the strength of your LORD is carrying you beyond the, "all about me" focus...to the lost, hurting and broken who are sitting in darkness. Your life, having been pruned, forgiven, renewed...now being used to lead others to JESUS CHRIST. He restores the failing heart and soul; each Scripture, each Prayer, each Word of Encouragement HE speaks deep inside the soul as you spend time with HIM...FOOD! 

The Lord is asking you to be faithful in the waiting. Stand firm in your resolve to seek HIM daily. Let HIM fill you. You were made for more. You're a special, chosen child of God. 

During the pruning seasons, stand strong in the knowledge that The LORD will work ALL things "together for good to those who love HIM, to those who are the called according to HIS purpose" 

"And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose." Romans 8:28

And then, in that perfect moment, all the growing and waiting springs forth the fruit of JESUS CHRIST in your life. Be faithful; patient in the waiting...God's not done with you yet...HIS MASTERPIECE!!!

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Are You Stuck In Life's Riptide?

"C'mon! Get in here!" We stood at the waters edge yelling, waving our arms. My son and nephew were deep in the big waves...too far out for inexperienced 12 & 14 year old boys. Worry began to flood. I noticed with each crashing wave, every paddle and kick, they still seemed to be heading deeper and deeper out into the ocean. They were caught in a riptide. The rules of escape need to be taught. I'd told my son but maybe not enough. My young nephew had no idea being from Utah and not familiar with ocean dangers. 

My brother & I continued to yell. I motioned for them to paddle horizontal to the shoreline to help them get out of the riptide and come in. Unfortunately, it didn't seem to be getting through  to them, they continued trying to swim against the ocean force. I knew that we may have to both jump in and save them.


Finally, a large wave broke through pushing them close enough to touch. 

The spray of the ocean across my face matched the refreshing relief in my heart. Sigh. 

That quick!


In a moment things can turn from fun to danger.


When life choices take us out into deep water; when you seem to be swimming and getting nowhere, heading deeper and deeper into a dangerous place...grab hold of your safety net. Reach out for the Lord's outstretched hand. He's yelling, "C'mon! Get in here! Let Me help you. Let me save you from drowning. Take my hand and walk with me."


Like the escape route of a riptide requires following the shoreline until you're safely out of harms way; our walk with Jesus is the same. When we choose to look to Him, to follow Him, we find ourselves safely out of the danger of our poor decisions. Washed clean. Restored. Made brand new in Christ's image, through His sacrifice.


Don't think you're too far gone. He has come to save YOU. He loves YOU. He wants to help YOU. He wants to guide you back to a safe and secure place...HIS LOVE.


Don't continue to swim against life's riptides hoping you'll eventually reach the shore. You're not designed to go this journey alone. That emptiness...that thing in your life that you're constantly trying to fill with (FILL IN THE BLANK) (drugs, alcohol, sex, lying, cheating, pride, stealing, hurting, unforgiveness)...whatever your space is, it can only be filled with the love of Jesus. Look to your Savior, Jesus Christ. He is the lifeguard of your life. Call to Him...HE WILL RESCUE YOU!  


"Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.." 2 Corinthians 1:3-4

"The Lord has appeared of old to me, saying: “Yes, I have loved you with an everlasting love; Therefore with lovingkindness I have drawn you." 
Jeremiah 31:3

"If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love, just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love. “These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full." 
John 15:10-11

"You will show me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore." 
Psalm 16:11

Thursday, October 23, 2014

IN THE WAITING...


It only takes "Faith the Size of a Mustard Seed"
I can't see it. I continue to hope. It doesn't look hopeful. I stand on promises. In the waiting I'm required to have faith. This faith doesn’t feel like much some days. I grip, grasp, cling…the small window appears as I press my face tightly against it. I try to see in, looking for that glimmer of change…a different view than the present. The curtain closes and I'm back in the waiting. Doubt threatens to steal. I'm sinking. What can I do?

It's in that moment of darkness; when I'm ready to give up, in the waiting, that I'm reminded of the Lord’s unending promises. "Wait on the Lord; Be of good courage, And He shall strengthen your heart; Wait, I say, on the Lord!” Psalms 27:14.

His timing is always perfect, maybe not perfect by my standards or limited view, but He knows exactly what I need in this situation, at this time. When the Lord moves, no one can stop Him. The doors fling open at the sound of His Voice. The way of impossible becomes possible. The path is cleared…the miracles abound. The prayer once a whisper, a cry, a plea, it’s answered…His answers.

In the waiting you are taught to persevere, never lose sight of Jesus, pray even if you only have faith the size of a mustard seed. So Jesus said to them, “Because of your unbelief; for assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you.” Matthew 17:20

Don't shrink back in the dry seasons. Don't give up before the miracle. Wait on the Lord. But those who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength; They shall mount up with wings like eagles, They shall run and not be weary, They shall walk and not faint.” Isaiah 40:31

In the waiting know that Jesus is holding you, teaching you to lean on Him in all things. Grab hold of his outstretched hand…in the waiting.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

The Struggle

I tried to hold them in. I struggled to put on my~everything's fine, no problems, no worries, just fine~face. But the moisture filled. The lids spilled. I'm not a crier. I've always tried to be tough.  In my mind the only thing crying accomplishes is making me feel worse, weak, emotionally unstable. 

Hold it together.

You can do this.

Things will get better.

Truth is, sometimes, the problems mount up. Problems that seem unending. Issues that seem impossible. I'm in the dark tunnel; walking, jogging, running...trying to see the light. I get tired. I busy myself in mindless things. I try not to look at it. But it's there. It's big; looming above, in front, beside and behind. There's no escaping it. Not tears, not tasks, not the fake smile. No...it's right here. 

So what do I do? I need help. 

I open my notebook. I read. It's my safe place, this $1.00 notebook. I hide my heart treasures within its covers; words, prayers, answered prayers, Scripture verses...they're all there. Words...some shared on this blog, others~things God has whispered to my soul during quiet time with Him. It's priceless. 

The first letters pop~"Faith Walk" This is no accident...no coincidence. The Scripture I wrote down months ago:
"Jesus answered, “Neither hath this man sinned nor his parents, but that the works of God should be made manifest in him." John 9:3

I continued to read...my writing about faith. It was before this trial, perhaps during another one...this life, full of them. Faith writing, faith in trials, faith in impossible: 
"Trials push us beyond our own strength. It asks us to look to God when we cannot bare the burden and weight. We are deceived in thinking we're sufficient in ourselves. We need to recognize our deficiency and seek Jesus' sufficiency DAILY, asking, "What would Jesus do in our situation?" 

He is our example. He always spent time with His Father. During His greatest trials, in the garden of Gethsemane, in heading to the Cross, He went and spent time alone, praying. The faith, trust, strength and endurance needed from God. He knew what was ahead. Jesus sat with His Father, it is there that He was filled.

I need filling. I need to be held. I need to know that this will work out for His good and perfect will.  

"And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose." Romans 8:28

So I make a choice. I choose to sit and spend time with the Lord. I choose to be still. I find all things that I need for this moment, this day, right here with God. 
"And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.”Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me." 2 Corinthians 12:9

HIS GRACE is sufficient for me. HIS STRENGTH is made perfect in weakness. Thank you Lord!

Friday, September 26, 2014

What Do Your Words Say About You?

"He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.”
John 7:38
My words come quickly. My tongue unleashes with a biting sting. This has been my struggle. This is my daily prayer. "Your Words not mine, Lord." Use what I say to uplift, not tear down. My ever constant plea.

When I was younger, I learned the importance of words and the effect they had on people. It was my defense mechanism. A sure fire way to keep people at a distance. I honed my skill through life struggles of raising three boys alone for several years. I was always standing guard. My mouth a willing sword.

Due to years of practice, my mouth seemed to take on a mind of it's own. Where once I'd only lash out at someone I felt was attacking me or my family, soon became anyone or anything that made me upset or angry. This weapon was hurtful. 

As my life continued to spiral out of control, one hurt and disappointment after another, I knew I needed a drastic change. My life and my family's had become unmanageable, chaotic, I knew the answer. I'd been running from the truth for years. I couldn't understand how my life had traveled so far off track. I needed more of Jesus and less of me.

We started going back to church. I prayed for help in all areas of my life, especially my mouth. I started reading scriptures first thing in the morning before getting out of bed; before the hectic day sucked every last minute away.  I turned my radio to a Christian station while driving. The upbeat worship music calmed my aggressive mind and mouth. I began to speak kinder. I had more control over what I said. I felt a need to encourage others with words instead of tearing down. Jesus was filling me up with His love and truth; mending old habits and scars.

My words...my lifelong struggle...they were being used for good. For the purpose and will of God. Words that brought hope, pointing people to the Healer, Jesus Christ. My scripture and prayer time  was actually the most healing gift I'd ever been given. I laid my struggles, hurt and weakness at the foot of the cross each morning. Jesus met me in that place. He carried my pain. He encouraged me, "Write and speak My words; words that edify and lift up, leading the lost hurting and broken to their Healer, Jesus Christ."

Today, lay your troubles at the feet of Jesus. Let Him heal you and use you. He has a great and glorious plan for your life. He makes ALL things new; turning even weaknesses into your greatest strengths. Call out to Him. He is near to the downcast and broken-hearted.

"Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up." James 4:10


"Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time,  casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you." 1 Peter 5:6-7