story & pictures by: Lisa Petrarca
I road my bike to the beach to spend some time writing, seeking a quiet, peaceful place on a 90 degree Monday in late September.
A group of kids came up next to me & sat on their surfboards in front of two instructors. They were learning how to surf today. After some practical instruction on form, they laid on their boards and practiced paddling.
Next they were shown the proper way to "pop up" on the board.
They continued to do this several times before two boys felt they were ready & left the crowd.
The rest of the kids moved to the waters edge to watch.
Once they felt confident, they all made their way into the water, the instructor close behind watching out for their safety and continuing to teach them as they put what they learned to the test.
Just like life, each day we embark on a new lesson. Some of us feel ready to jump in, while others need more time to prepare.
Whatever pace you're at, your teacher and instructor is right there with you, out in the "water" of life.
Take time in the morning to listen to your "teacher's" words through prayer & daily scripture study. You will then be ready to ride the waves of your day with confidence, knowing that if you wipe out, the Lord is right there with you, instructing and guiding your way through the rough waves of life!
Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.
Tuesday, September 28, 2010
Tuesday, September 21, 2010
"Seek me with all your might, mind and strength. For my way is easy and my burden is light. You have been ever seeing but not perceiving, ever hearing but not understanding. My way is easy and my burden is light, when you seek me with all your heart."
"My sacrifice was given for your freedom. No longer are you to carry your burdens alone. Lay them at my feet and I will remove them from you. Give up your worries and I will take them from your mind. You will no longer carry the things that you've labored with. They are no longer a part of you. I have set the captive free. I am freeing you up to go and do my work. To share my light with the entire world. To set the captives free. To share my love with the world. To show them that they no longer need to depend on their own strength, for I will carry them."
"I will guide their way and keep the enemy at bay. He will no longer be able to control you with his lies. My power and strength is beyond your understanding. I ask you to come to me daily in prayer and I will hear and answer you. I will take in your words and reign blessings down upon you for your faithfulness. I am here, waiting for you to know me, to ask for my wisdom and understanding. Seek me daily and you will find me. My burden is easy. I'm coming soon to set the captives free."
"Trust, seek and get to know me while I still may be found. I am your Lord & Savior, I have come to set you free. Release the burdens on me. I have paid a price for your sins, I have given my blood so that you may walk in newness of life."
"Why are you not taking my gift? It is easy to receive, just believe in me, repent and ask for the Holy Spirit to fill you up each day. Why do you make it so hard? Why do you continue to doubt. Let go! Let go! Let go! I am here to catch you. Release all your worldly desires and seek me, you will find me when you seek me with all your heart. I am here, I am waiting. My love for you is endless, you can't begin to understand it!"
Wednesday, September 15, 2010
Do you ever feel like this some days?
I know that WE ALL have mood swings and often think, "I can't control them." But think about the times that you were mad and arguing with your spouse, girlfriend, boyfriend, parents, siblings etc. & you run into someone you know. Almost immediately, you can change the tone of your voice, controlling the anger and bitterness into the nice, kind, fun person that you want the outside world to see.
Do you have the bad habit of allowing negative, self defeating thoughts enter your mind? This often sets the tone for your entire day. I want to remind you to start your day off with prayer & a few minutes of studying God's word, watch your day be transformed.
YOU HAVE A CHOICE!
Work on how you talk to your loved ones & yourself this week. Work on your anger, negative attitude and negative self talk.
Here's a few positive quotes to think on:
1. Pray & read the word of God today & He will set you free!
2. Courage is progress in the presence of fear...push through your fear to reach your goals!
3. A thankful heart = a powerful person. What are you thankful for today?
4. The world is full of two kinds of people, the givers and the takers. Takers eat well but givers sleep well!
5. God's word coming out of your mouth is one of the most powerful forces on heaven & earth!
6. God's giving is inseparably connected with our asking...PRAY today!
7. God never gives you anything to do that's beyond your ability with Him by your side!
8. Kindness is the oil that takes the friction out of life!
9. What virtues can you find today in the people close to you? Look for the good & see your relationship change!
10. Good words are worth much & cost little...think about what you say today!
11. Don't wait for your ship to come in, swim out to it!
12. It is challenging to say the right thing...let wisdom rise above emotions!
13. Think about the words you speak & you will learn a lot about yourself! Speak POSITIVE today!
14. Prayer does not change God but changes him who prays!
15. He who has a why to live for can bear almost any how!
16. Give God your problems & allow Him to give you solutions!
17. Trust God when He says no & when He says yes!
18. The value of persistent prayer is not that He will hear us...but that we will finally hear Him!
19. Learn to take steps of faith each day...it gets easier along the way!
20. Jesus Christ died so that you will be set free...take His life giving sacrifice!
"For I know the plans I have for you", declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. "I will be found by you, declares the Lord, "and will bring you back from captivity." Jeremiah 29:11-14
Thursday, September 9, 2010
story by: Lisa Petrarca
When you woke up today, did you remember to look over your Thankful List? This list always seems to get hidden behind our, To Do List, I Want List, I Need List, and the ever popular, Why Me List.
Everyday we go through our endless mental checklists and somehow the Thankful List gets buried or lost. Even in our daily prayer life, we pray for our wants, needs, hopes, dreams, wealth and health. But do we remember to thank our Heavenly Father for all the things He has blessed us with?
Each one of us should place our Thankful List on top. When you wake up in the morning, check this list FIRST, then head down your other mental lists. I'm sure that you'll find with a simple "Thankful" adjustment your other lists wont seem as long.
I'm challenging each one of you to try this. Think of 10 things you're thankful for before getting out of bed in the morning. Next, say a prayer thanking the Lord for these things.
I'm sure He doesn't get to hear the thank you's very often.
"Praise the Lord. Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good; His love endures forever." Psalm 106:1
I took you from the ends of the earth, from its farthest corners I called you. I said, "You are my servant"; I have chosen you and have not rejected you. So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. Isaiah 41:9-10