Category: blessings

ACCORDING TO YOUR FAITH

Do you ever get frustrated because you feel as if your prayers aren’t being answered?

Do you realize your prayers are answered according to your faith?

This revelation was a game changer for me. As you read this post, ask the Lord to give you a revelation of His Word regarding faith. In Matthew 9:28-30, two blind men came to Jesus for healing…

Jesus said to them, “Do you believe that I am able to do this?” They said to Him, “Yes, Lord.” Then He touched their eyes, saying, “According to your faith let it be to you.” And their eyes were opened.

Arriving at the understanding that your prayers are answered according to your faith can be encouraging or discouraging. Encouraging, because you may only need to make a few minor tweaks to your faith, to have the kind needed to move mountains.

Discouraging because you see your lack of trust in Jesus, and that your prayers aren’t really being answered—do to your own lack of faith. And now you know, it’s up to you to take courage and fortify your faith.

If it discourages you, do not despair—God’s grace is here and it’s enough to get you where you need to be. If your faith is weak, please know that making the choice to strengthen your faith and believe beyond a shadow of a doubt in Jesus’ faithfulness, is the most important decision you can make. Do it today! (Click here Fully Convinced to read how to strengthen your faith.)

Basically you need to seek a change of heart, and change your perspective about Jesus and His Word. You have to determine to believe that He is trustworthy and absolutely faithful.

When I realized that my prayers were answered according to my faith I was going through a period of sickness and decided to write healing scriptures on the mirror in my bathroom. Every time I walked into my bathroom, I could see the words on my mirror and I would repeat them to myself, pray them over my body, and thank God for His healing. As I did so, Matthew 9:22 came to life, it says,

“Daughter, take courage; your faith has made you well.” At once the woman was made well.” (NASB) 

I began to understand that my faith is the key. Jesus’ power—His victory on the cross has already purchased the answers to our prayers. His power is available to everyone—our faith is what accesses it. All of a sudden I found more and more scripture that basically said the same thing—let it be done to you according to your faith and nothing is impossible for those who believe.

“Because you believed, it has happened.” Matthew 8:13

“Your faith has saved and healed you.” Mark 10:52

“”Your faith is great. Your request is granted.” And her daughter was instantly healed.” Matthew 15:28

“Oh, woman, your faith is something else. What you want is what you get!” Right then her daughter became well.” Matthew 15:28 (MSG)

How would you like Jesus to say to you “What you want is what you get?” It is completely possible!

This is so exciting!

Be encouraged to seek Him—seek to strengthen your faith today!

What Qualifies Us for Parenthood?

I’ve been pondering the art of motherhood, and really struggled to put words together that would bless and encourage Moms (and Dads) this Mothers/Fathers Day season.

Why the struggle? Well, if you know me at all, then you know I don’t like to sugar coat, and I tend to way over think things. So my brutally honest and over thought out approach to life didn’t seem to be a good way to write about parenthood on Mothers Day. (I know Mother’s Day has passed, I’ve been trying to write this blog for a week now!). Nonetheless I feel urged by the Lord, to write about the subject.

I don’t feel urged to write about parenthood because I’m an expert, just the opposite.

My 33 years of experience have mainly taught me that I don’t know much about parenting.

I’m sure this sounds strange. But truthfully I only really know two things about parenting. Can you see why I was conflicted in writing about this subject?

On Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest we only see the pretty part of parenting. Where people look like experts, with no real struggles.

The real issues of parenthood press us to the point where we realize we are not qualified for this role in life. Because truthfully we don’t know what the H (heck) we are doing!

If I were to put a Mom resume together, I could list a thousand amazing things and still not be qualified.

So what qualifies us?

Jesus.

Jesus is our resume.

The number one thing I know about parenting is this:  I am the most qualified, the most accomplished Mom when I realize how much I need Jesus—when I trust my kids to the work of grace—to the work of the cross.

In situations involving our children, my husband and I can talk, fret and discuss the issue for hours, and we always reach the same conclusion. And this is the second thing I know—that Jesus is enough.

Yes, all my years of parenting humbly bring me to the truth of these two conclusions.

1. Jesus, not my skills or knowledge qualifies me, and you, to be an excellent parent.

2. Jesus fills in every gap, His love, faithfulness, mercy and grace are enough for every parenting situation.

Please be encouraged to give yourself a breaklife is messy. We are all in process. It’s not about getting through life perfectly. It’s about relationship with Jesus—living in His grace and love. He does not expect perfection just submission. And when we realize only He can qualify us—the pressure is off—we find rest and freedom.

Following are a portion of lyrics from a song I love, titled Touch the Sky, by Hillsong United.

     My heart beating,
my soul breathing.
     I found my life when
I laid it down.
Upward falling,
spirit soaring.
I touch the sky when
my knees hit the ground.

Treasure these truths…

1. We find life and it’s answers for parenting, and any other situation, as we lay everything down.

2. In Jesus there are no mistakes, His grace causes us to only fall upward.

3. We reach our highest when we bow our lowest.

Link to the song http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y1RQciil7B0&sns=em

Here are some pics of my wonderful Mothers Day. We had a rooftop party, with good conversation, great food prepared by my kids and we might even of Danced! This is us on a good day. My kids are no where near perfect, but they are all masterpieces.

  My daughter beautifully set up the rooftop of her downtown Meridian apartment

 The cooks

 The gangs almost all here, my oldest son and his family didn’t make it    So cute

  The Boys explored

Most of the Forests are fearless

I got to dance with my sons and my husband  My baby!

  Baby Robin held by auntie Maddie, talking to uncle Trent

  The newlyweds

  Me and my love

  Robin and her Mama Kaila

 Five of my seven kids!

Thanks for reading!

Don’t Waste the Wait

Does anyone enjoy waiting?

When was the last time you waited and un-sarcastically gave thanks for it?

We live in a microwave quick—give it to me now society. Our culture has trained us not to wait. But have you ever noticed how unavoidable waiting is?

In this journey of strengthening my faith I have come to a huge reality, which you can read about in my last blog The Real Story (click to read). This reality is faith closes the gap between promise and fulfillment. Once the lights go on and we grasp this reality—we are likened to a blind person receiving their sight—everything takes on a new perspective. The blinders have fallen off and we realize all things are possible!

Then we come up against “The Wait” that beautiful time in between promise and fulfillment.

Ugh.

I was going to title this blog post “Hating the Waiting” but decided to be more positive.

On that note I want to encourage us in our waiting. Since waiting is inescapable we must come to the conclusion God is in it and not waste our wait but instead view it as the valuable treasure it is.

I understand how challenging this is—so why not rise to the occasion? Let us resolve within ourselves to hold waiting in high esteem, to recognize its value and absorb its truth.

One truth about the wait is—it will affect us—either positively or negatively—with this in mind, let us allow the wait to etch beauty on our heart, soul and life.

We start first by asking God to change our heart in regard to waiting. Seeking a heart change will help us to not fight the process. Fighting the waiting process opens many doors—namely bitterness and unbelief.

Secondly, we need to ask God what He wants to accomplish in us during the waiting period. We do not wait in a void—no, waiting is proactive. If we don’t know the purpose for the wait we will wander and grow disillusioned.

The waiting process requires patience. Not always our favorite—I know. The best way I’ve found to acquire patience is to get more of the Holy Spirit. Since patience is a fruit of the spirit—the more we are filled—the greater our fruit.

Another requirement in waiting is we must take care not to misuse our time in the process by tossing and turning in worry. The definitions for the word worry are horrific! Listen to this—to torment with cares, devour, to harass by repeated biting. That’s lovely, or how about this one—to seize by the throat with teeth and shake or mangle. YIKES! I know that one! No wonder the Bible tells us not to worry!

Here are some truths about waiting that will help us in not wasting the wait:

  • Waiting does not change the truth about God—He is still faithful
  • There’s beauty in the waiting process—you just need to look for it
  • Waiting brings change—let it change you for the better
  • No matter what season we are in—waiting will play a part
  • Embrace the wait—it’ll ease the pain
  • Waiting is not an interruption to God’s will—don’t try to avoid it
  • Waiting diminishes self-absorption—we find it’s not all about us
  • Waiting brings a greater dependency on God—we stop trying to do life our way
  • In waiting we find rest—worrying our prayers to God can end
  • Breakthrough is on the other side of the wait—don’t give up
  • Waiting will draw us closer or drive us further from God—choose wisely
  • Waiting reveals our heart attitude—adjust your heart appropriately

How to find beauty in the wait:

  • Stay thankful—don’t grumble and complain (1 Thessalonians 5:18)
  • Worship God—He is always worthy (Psalm 42:11)
  • Stay in the Word—believe it’s truth (Romans 4:20)
  • Speak truth—life and death are in the power of the tongue (Proverbs 18:21)
  • Expect God to be true to His character—He can be nothing but faithful (Numbers 23:19)
  • Take every thought captive—don’t agree with the devils lies and accusations (2 Corinthians 10:5)
  • Wait on God as a waiter waits on those he’s serving—serve God and others (Romans 12:10-11)
  • Pray—don’t worry (Philippians 4:6-7)
  • Strengthen your faith—don’t wavier in unbelief (Romans 4:20)
  • Hold tight to God’s promises—be fully convinced He’s faithful to accomplish all He’s promised you (Romans 4:21)

Waiting is not necessarily a trial but it does test our faith in God, and weighs our dependency on Him. Our main objective in waiting (and any other situation in life) should be to know God more—to snuggle in under the shadow of His wing, resting in the truth that He is all we need.

Whatever waiting process you may be in, please do not let it steal your faith. Be encouraged to surrender to it—allowing yourself to find God in it.

Don’t Sit on the Sidelines

Do you ever find yourself sitting on the sidelines in life? What makes people sit on the sidelines? For me it was fear—it kept me at a distance from life and from living a faith dominated lifestyle.

The opposite of fear is faith…ponder this a moment—if in any area of our life we are fearful—it’s a trust issue and the antidote is faith. The bottom line is—when we have true faith in God there is no room for fear.

As I’ve mentioned before I’ve been on a giant (wonderful and sometimes painful) journey to strengthen my faith. The amount of fear in my life was the tell-tale sign that lead me on this expedition in search of unmovable—relentless faith.

On this mission I first had to come to a major conclusion, which was God’s Faithfulness is Not On Trial  nor should it ever be. Yes, I have walked through many heart breaking adventures in my life, but God was never to blame.

Oh but the enemy of my soul was ever present to accuse God with subtle allegations, that unfortunately over time created a bed of comfort for me—a place in the midst of pain where I found a bit of shelter.

The bad news is when we agree with the devil it never turns out good! The good news is when we wander from truth, our gracious; long suffering shepherd always provides a way for us to return.

A good thing to realize about lack of faith is that it’s a heart issue—it’s a place in our heart needing to be perfected in His love. A place that simply needs to be let go of—a place where we make a beautiful exchange—our fear, pain and doubt for His unrelenting love and freedom.

Who wants to be partnered with fear anyway?

The Bible tells us,

There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love. (1 John 4:18)

I started off this blog intending to write about my big adventure this past weekend, but ended up writing about the my bigger adventure of acquiring deeper faith. The two adventures really do go hand in hand and the lesser of the two would not have been possible without the first…

One way fear effected me was that physically I was not very courageous. My husband and kids they are beyond courageous—they are borderline thrill seekers! And I normally just sit, watch (pray) and take pictures, but not this weekend!  Well…a third of this weekend—they participated in three courageous events and me—only one (maybe next year)!

I found myself fearless when on our family vacation, I decided to make the one hundred foot rock climb to a beautiful crystal clear waterfall. Yes friends I did it without hesitation!

waterfall

Each step upward was made rock by rock. And when the climb got intense my husband and sons were before and behind me, ever faithfully holding out their hands, and pointing out the best places to next set my foot. Even when a snake popped his head out of a crack in the rocks and when another slithered on top of one sons foot, I kept going—even when spider webbed rocks where unsecured and shaky, yes even when the moss was slippery and the freezing waterfall pounded on my head and shoulders as I maneuvered across a one foot  wide, one hundred foot high ledge—I, by God’s grace, simply choose not to give fear a second thought!

The climb reminded me of my journey—my life. There always has been and always will be reasons to fear, but God in His unending faithfulness is right behind me—right behind you—and He’s ahead of us, holding out His hand, pointing out the best way to go. Encouraging us to take life one step (rock) at a time, never allowing us to fall—even when our feet land on unstable ground. And when the devil (that snake) rears his ugly head threatening us, we must realize all we have to fear is fear itself. And fear is really nothing but a facade. God’s the real deal and if we allow Him to perfect us in His love we can walk in the freedom He gave His life for, we can get off the sidelines and we can experience the waterfalls of life—crystal clear and refreshing.

Please be encouraged to strengthen your faith (click here to read how: Fully Convinced)—to say no to fear and all its restrictions and yes to God’s faithfulness!

waterfall2 Simply beautiful—so glad I did’t miss out by sitting on the sidelines!

Here are some pictures of my family doing what they do…being adventurous! These are the ones I didn’t participate in!

rock       oasis
The kids climbing down huge rocks leading into a vast canyon and beautiful oasis.

mr bridge  Girls jumping off a bridge.

bridge 2
My husband and son sitting on top of this bridge before jumping off.

 

sunset
God doing what He does best…just being Himself.

 

 

Fortify Your Faith

Do you ever marvel at the countless times our heart and soul need encouragement, reassurance or a simple reminder of God’s faithfulness? I do. The baffling truth is—human nature always causes us to forget God’s faithfulness and revert to old thought patterns of doubt and self-reliance. This is one reason we must daily fortify our faith. We don’t read our Bible and pray everyday out of religious routine, we do it because we need continual downloads of truth that strengthen our belief—drawing us nearer to Jesus.

I’ve been in a huge battle, a battle that’s generations old, not just on my side of the family but on my husband’s side as well. I mentioned in a recent blog, the victory I’ve had over the fear of lack and lack its self. I truly believe it’s been defeated, but of course it regularly tries to remind me otherwise. This week is one of those times.

What did I do?
First, I ‘ll tell you what I didn’t do, I did not agree with it—I’m choosing not to listen to lies and accusations.
Second, praying and reading the truth and choosing to believe it!
Third, asked for help. I have two friends who live hundreds of miles away—they always have my back. With assurance I sent out an email asking for prayer. We never have to fight our battles by our self. Both replied with encouragement, one friend sent the following response. With her permission I’m sharing it with you, it was too good not to!

As you read it let your faith be fortified. It’s written by Cathy Brookshire, my friend, sojourner, mentor and sister.

“Remember – Jesus asks you to find Him today – in the moment and to be thankful – right now – for His presence and His provision.

It is always when we start living in the past or the future when “old friends” [fear, worry, doubt] come to visit.

Is the manna He has given enough for today? Will He provide the necessary manna tomorrow? The Israelites didn’t know. . . so they had to put their trust in God, believe God, rest in today’s provision and trust if there was no manna in the morning then God was going to do a new thing.

Their trust could not be in the manna – the provision – the whole reason manna was provided was so their trust would be placed on God and God alone and they would find everything they needed in life right there, right in the middle of nothing, right in the middle of the desert.

The Israelites did not need one thing added to their lives because they had the very presence of God. All God wanted them to do was to see Him, know Him, love Him receive His love for themselves and to be satisfied in Him to taste and see that He is good.

God is asking us the same question: “Am I enough?” My circumstances do not ever have to change – only my heart – only my perspective – if God is with me then I am satisfied. I am whole. I am healed. I am provided for. I am cared for. I am loved. I can not stay the same if I choose to sit in His presence. I am changed. I am transformed. I have no need. Everything that is not of Him has to flee.

Today I choose God. Today I choose satisfaction in Jesus. Today I choose rest in His presence. Today I choose peace that surpasses understanding, as I hand over every prayer/need. Today I choose to be loved and to have His love fill me, heal me make me whole.

God is looking for His people to put their trust in Him and Him alone. . .come Lord and may Your presence be enough to satisfy our souls.”

Please be encouraged today to make Jesus enough—to trust in Him—not in what He provides!

Romans 4:20-21 He did not waver at the promise of God through unbelief, but was strengthened in faith, giving glory to God, and being fully convinced that what He had promised He was also able to perform.

What’s Dead in Your Life?

In this season of renewed faith, my heart is stirring—swelling with the possibilities of the concept found in Ezekiel 37. It by no means is a new idea, but as we know, the distractions of weak faith can cause a forgetfulness to settle on us—keeping us from remembering the tools God has provided for us to live successfully. And seriously, if we will apply these concepts—our life will change.

First let me give you a little insight as to what’s happening in Ezekiel 37. God takes Ezekiel to a valley of dry dead bones—this was not just a few dead bodies but a whole valley full, and asks him a question, He says, “Can these bones live?” What God is really asking Ezekiel is “Do you believe—do you have the faith to believe what’s dead can come to life?”

Such a simple question, but so deep and personal.

God is looking into our eyes—into our heart—asking you and I “Do you believe the dry bones in your life can live?”

Ezekiel’s answer to God’s question is an awesome response of faith—he turns the responsibility of such a miracle back to the Miracle Maker Himself and says “Only you know, sovereign Lord” Essentially “I trust in You and your sovereignty—you are good—you can do anything—just say the word—just look in that direction and it’ll be done.”

When our faith in God takes the hand of expectancy and partners with the truth of His Word—we’d better brace our self, because that’s all it takes for mountains to move—for miracles to happen. Faith stemming from a relationship of complete dependency on God—will bring breakthrough.

Whenever God asks us a question like this it’s rhetorical—He’s not searching for an answer, but stirring our hope—nudging our belief and expectancy—arousing our faith!

Next, God lets Ezekiel know what is required of him. Yes, we must do our part—faith is an action word. The Lord God instructed him to prophesy and say “Oh dry bones hear the Word of the Lord” I love this! All we have to do is first believe, then speak/pray God’s Word to the things in our life that are dehydrated, empty or dead. Tell the dry bones to give heed to the truth—tell them how big our God is.

Ezekiel writes, “So I prophesied as I was commanded” and when he did there was a noise, a rattling as the bones came together, as sinew and flesh covered them.

But that was not all, the bones came together but they were still void of life. This is the picture of believers today—lots of movement, but no life—a lot of information—tons of knowledge, but no knowing of God the Father, His Son Jesus and the Holy Spirit. This is the cause of the dehydration—this is why faith is weak—we need to put away our rules and come into relationship.

In verse 9, the Lord tells Ezekiel

“Prophesy to the breath. Prophesy, son of man. Tell the breath, ‘God, the Master, says, Come from the four winds. Come, breath. Breathe on these slain bodies. Breathe life!’”

The meaning of the word breath is spirit. We must speak to the Spirit of God—inviting Him to come breathe life into lifelessness.

Lastly Ezekiel responds to the Lord (a response on our part is always necessary) he says So I prophesied, just as he commanded me.” And when he did what was commanded the breath entered the dead and they came alive! They stood up on their feet, a huge army!

Everyday, all day we are faced with something or someone needing life. We can speak, pray and prophesy into our own personal life, our spouse and marriage, our kids, family and churches, into those who need God, into our businesses and work place, into hopes and dreams that are dormant. We can breathe words of life into relationships, finances, health, bad character, weaknesses and addictions—the possibilities are endless!

When we speak life and when the Holy Spirit breathes His breath into a person or situation it’s the act of inflating what was deflated. What’s deflated and dead in your life?

Will you prophesy and speak to your circumstances—will you tell the Breath of God to breathe His life to those situations around you—as commanded? It would be crazy not to!

What would stop you?

Fear of disappointment?

Weak faith?

If so—be encouraged to stir yourself—start by prophesying to your thirsty faith! Speak the Word to your unbelief and watch it form—speak to the Breath of God to invade your faith and heart—then listen for the signs of life!

As you listen for the signs of life keep three things in mind…

1. Seek Him first—eyes on the Miracle Maker not the miracle

2. Patience—don’t waste the wait with worry

3. Remember—the devil’s main objective is to rob you of your faith—resist him!

Ezekiel 37:1-10,  The hand of the Lord was on me, and he brought me out by the Spirit of the Lord and set me in the middle of a valley; it was full of bones. He led me back and forth among them, and I saw a great many bones on the floor of the valley, bones that were very dry. He asked me, “Son of man, can these bones live?” I said, “Sovereign Lord, you alone know.”  Then he said to me, “Prophesy to these bones and say to them, ‘Dry bones, hear the word of the Lord! This is what the Sovereign Lord says to these bones: I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life. I will attach tendons to you and make flesh come upon you and cover you with skin; I will put breath in you, and you will come to life. Then you will know that I am the Lord.’” So I prophesied as I was commanded. And as I was prophesying, there was a noise, a rattling sound, and the bones came together, bone to bone. I looked, and tendons and flesh appeared on them and skin covered them, but there was no breath in them. Then he said to me, “Prophesy to the breath; prophesy, son of man, and say to it, ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: Come, breath, from the four winds and breathe into these slain, that they may live.’”  So I prophesied as he commanded me, and breath entered them; they came to life and stood up on their feet—a vast army.

Change Your Situation!

Life is full of ups and downs—some big, others small. That’s just life—no need for anxiety! The questions are—how do we manage life in the seemingly dry or difficult times? How do we turn a desert place into a spring? Make a dead place alive? How do I change my situation???

Psalm 84 has the answer,

Blessed is the man whose strength is in You, whose heart is set on pilgrimage. As they pass through the Valley of Baca, they make it a spring.

1.      1.  We are blessed when we find our strength in God. Blessed doesn’t mean we won’t have ups and downs—no, it simply means we are never alone or left without solutions in our ups and downs.

Finding our strength in God is a trade—we give Him our weakness in exchange for His incomprehensible strength. Acknowledging our weakness—basically humbling our self—makes way for a flood of God’s grace, strengthening us to get through any situation.

2.       2. We set our heart on eternity—ever looking forward. As long as we focus on this world and all the fulfillment it can bring—we will come up empty. We must set our focus on Jesus, knowing we are on pilgrimage—a journey—always moving forward—constantly drawing nearer.

3.     (Next is the answer to the big question…”How do I change my situation?”)

3. When we pass through a desert place, we determine—resolve in our self to make it a spring.

You can change your situation. How? By calling God into it. As God’s presence fills our heart, soul and life even the driest of times are refreshed.The dead places are made alive by His very life in ours.

I love how verse 6 of Psalm 84 says “they” make it a spring. It’s a choice. We can wallow in the dust of our hard place, whining to God or worse accusing Him of unfaithfulness, or we can choose to make it a spring. Yes it’s hard. But worth it! Remember; the purest gold is wrought from the hottest fire!

Please be encouraged—to determine—to make every dry, dead place in your life a spring.

 

Not Just for Kids

Have you read the story of Jonah lately? Every time my grandson and I read the Bible together, we read about Jonah—how he didn’t obey God, fled and got swallowed up by a whale. Read Jonah to get the whole story—it’s not just for kids!

Today I read the book of Jonah on my own. What caught my attention was his faith in God.

In Jonah 4:2 he says this about God;

I know that You are a gracious and merciful God, slow to anger and abundant in loving-kindness, One who relents from doing harm

Jonah knew the character of God and had faith that He wouldn’t be anything but faithful. Why then did Jonah disobey God and run the other way?

Basically, Jonah did not let his faith in God change him.

He lived a life where He knew all about God but didn’t actually know Him.

I’ve lived this lifestyle and understand how comforting it can be. But the truth is—in living this lifestyle we miss the whole point.

Our faith in God must rearrange our life—transform us—causing us to become who we know God is. It must also draw us near to Him—where we actually know Him and experience what we believe. Knowing God causes personal relationship—relationship leads to obedience—the more we are with Jesus the more we become like Him.

Our goal in life is to live and be like Jesus. Please be encouraged to let your faith in God transform you.

Apology: The advertisements on my page are allowed by the blog site WordPress, I personally have nothing to do with them…sorry for any inconvenience.

 

 

 

Change of Season

When the beautiful leaves of fall begin to flood the ground—my heart twinges—it’ll soon be winter. Of all the season changes this one causes me—the born and raised southern California girl, to have to mentally prepare.

My heart and life are experiencing an even vaster season change. Just the term used to describe it sounds wrong. Empty nest.

Truly, it’s not the fact that the kids grew up that aches my heart—it’s the rending—the separation—the change of season it self.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m over being sad, excited for the next season and I am gladly letting go of last season, ready to move forward—I just didn’t realize the ache would be so deep.

Two weeks ago today we packed up our youngest child and moved him to California, where he will begin fulfilling his God designed destiny. Before we left I went into his room to make sure nothing was forgotten—just the sight of the emptiness brought tears. I said oh God—I’m in trouble—it’s not even 6 AM on the first day of the trip and I’m crying! Ten minutes later with tears in his eyes my husband asks if I’ll be okay—more tears—this only lasted a few hours—thankfully our son was in a different car than us!

The day before the trip I sat at mid-day, amongst the chaos of preparations, in my chair needing my Father to hold me. In His faithfulness and this is the gist of what I want to share with you, He showed me that my heart is securely in His hand and He is massaging it. He knows the ache, He understands the season change and He’s put my heart in his tender care.

How faithful is God that He would accept the gift of our heart and take charge of it? I’m so grateful to be in a relationship with the One who knows and understands the smallest to the largest of heartache. He knew this time would come—this ache—and He knew just what to do.

This was an anticipated season change—every parent knows its coming, at times we even long for it. We prepare our children for adulthood—we teach them to walk, talk, feed themselves, use the potty,  get dressed on their own, read and write, take chances, speak out, be who God created them to be—that’s what we do as parents—every step of the way teaching them to be independent of us. By the grace of God we teach them to be excellent, strong, mature, loving, kindhearted, God filled—world changers.

Why then are we so taken off guard when those taught excellence, walk in excellence?

Because we have dared to love.

Dared to take God’s charge of carrying, giving birth to, training and finally releasing—yet again into God’s loving hands.

Letting go—always letting go—such is life.

The night before we said goodbye we were at his new church where he will start an internship, I looked over at my man-child—so handsome and so grown. He was worshiping the Lord—just as I taught him to do—giving God his all. As I wiped my tears the Lord softly said “He also is in my Hand.”

Everyone—everything—every season—always in His faithful hand.

Life—but a vapor is always bursting with season changes—no need to fear, be encouraged in knowing—your heart is being held by the heartbeat of heaven Himself.

Isaiah 43:13 Indeed before the day was, I am He And there is no one who can deliver out of My hand, I work, and who will reverse it?”

Isaiah 41:10 Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, Yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.

Proverbs 22:6 Train up a child in the way he should go, And when he is old he will not depart from it.

Apology: The advertisements on my page are allowed by the blog site WordPress, I personally have nothing to do with them…sorry for any inconvenience.

 

Suddenly Moments

What do you do when you are having a bad day? Do you ever just worship God? Give thanks, glory or praise? Understandably being the humans that we are—this is not always our default reaction.

But I want to challenge you to step out of your normal default box and into the realm of suddenly moments—that result in God shaking our life to its very core and bringing about change.

I heard an amazing message—totally worth repeating—on Acts 16. Follow along with me as I reiterate what was happening and how God—our Knight in shining armor suddenly comes to save the day.

Paul and Silas, in the will of God—directed by Him—went to Macedonia. As they were lingering in Philippi, they met a God-fearing woman named Lydia who on hearing the Word of the Lord believed with all her heart, as a result she and her household were baptized and insisted the men stay at their home. At this point all is going well, Paul’s preaching—God’s moving and they are invited to stay and be cared for, in a rather nice place. Acts 16:6-15

One day on the way to prayer a demon possessed psychic, slave girl, started following them around, drawing attention to them by yelling out “These men are working for the Most High God. They’re laying out the road of salvation for you!”

Paul, not wanting to be in agreement with her or to be identified as being with her, ignored her for a few days then finally when too annoyed he cast the demon out of her. The slave girl was suddenly free and her owners very upset—their lucrative little business had come to an end. Consequently, Paul and Silas were dragged into the market place—they were lied about and accused, causing the crowd to turn into an angry gang. Their clothes were torn off and they were ordered to be severely beaten and thrown into prison, under high security wearing leg irons.  Acts 16:16-24

Paul and Silas—bloody and beaten, sit chained in prison. Would you say they were having a bad day? Absolutely!

What did they do? Did they accuse God of unfaithfulness by whining and complaining?

No—just the opposite! Paul and Silas were found praying and worshipping.

What would you do?

I love how Paul and Silas handled the situation! Their default heart and soul reaction was to pray and worship God—in doing so they were giving thanks.

I pray our default heart reaction would be to silence the mouth of the accuser and give thanks by worshipping God.

How? Why? Because the truth is—He is always good. We must train our heart and soul to worship and give thanks according to truth—not circumstance.

This is when the suddenly moments of God’s faithfulness rule our life.

What happens next in Acts 16:25-26 is the cry of our heart.

But at midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them. Suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken; and immediately all the doors were opened and everyone’s chains were loosed.

Suddenly there was a great earthquake! Paul and Silas’ worship caused God to shake the very foundations and set the prisoners free—the scripture says immediately all the doors were opened and everyone’s chains were loosed.

Not just our own freedom from the prisons we find ourselves inoccurs when we worship, but freedom for others as well.

I don’t know about you but I need and want God to suddenly shake the foundation of various situations in my life and in the life of those I love and care about.

This Word from the book of Acts has brought fresh understanding to the scripture in 2 Thessalonians 5:18

“In everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.”

Please be encouraged to grab ahold of and own this concept. Worship God, giving Him thanks in every situation—lifting our eyes from life and circumstances to the God of the impossible—the One who can suddenly shake any situation and change the landscape of impossible surroundings.

Apology: The advertisements on my page are allowed by the blog site WordPress, I personally have nothing to do with them…sorry for any inconvenience.