Over-filled!

Wow girl you’re biting off too much!

FullSizeRender (23)I wish I could say that I never bite off more than I can or should chew.  But that would be a lie.  More times than I care to admit I take on too much.  I then can’t do one thing with excellence the whole pile of it just gets a mediocre attempt.  And worse yet it leaves a huge mess to clean up.

2 Corinthians 9:7 (AMP)

Let each one give [thoughtfully and with purpose] just as he has decided in his heart, not grudgingly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver [and delights in the one whose heart is in his gift].

 

As a Type A, getter-done woman really absorbing and applying 2 Corinthians 9:7, is difficult to say the least.  I love the concept of giving God delight which can be only achieved when we give from the heart not from obligation.

Prayer: Lord Jesus, grant me the wisdom to say, “No” when I should.  Give me the strength to withstand the desire to constantly accomplish instead of soaking in the Word and in Your arms.  Forgive me of my busyness-without worth to the Kingdom.  Grant me the mind of Christ.  Thank you, Amen.

 

Mother’s heart

 

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“Thwang.” A giant drum spins and drives its timber into my heart cavity releasing a devastating quake into my mother’s heart.  An agitated, twittering flutter emerges where once a strong steady beat resided. This unnatural vibration of the heart sets into motion frantic thoughts.

            A simple statement of fact regarding a lack of a skill in one of my sons left me deadened for hours.  Dread settles in. The “what ifs?”-emerge.  What if he never improves?  What will he look like as an adult?  All the while, the other side of my heart wants to fully experience the gift of motherhood without undue expectations and worry.  How do you reconcile these two distinctly different realities? How do you operate with a divided heart?

As I struggle to breathe, a prayer escapes me.  “Lord Jesus, I can’t bear this.  I don’t have a clue on what to do to relieve this pain and to make the correct choices not based on fear but on Truth.”

As I let go, I feel the crashing- thudding weapon formed against my mother’s heart begin to dismantle.  I understand that God loves my children more than I do.  That this skill was improving and that if I laid this problem in God’s hand the solution would continue to unfold.  The moment I grab it back, it arrests the work that God is doing.  In the past fear had frozen me, forcing me into a sick dance from in-action to frantic ineffective action.  I cannot find balance alone.  There is no balance in my own mind or heart.  Desperate I release to Jesus and start the road to healing.

(I encourage you to proclaim this prayer out- loud over your life)

Prayer: Great is the glory of the Lord and forever He does reign.  His sovereign hand is on my heart and in my children’s lives.  I cannot save my children or myself my help comes from the Lord, the maker of heaven and earth.  I proclaim and declare trust in the living God- Jesus Christ.  Have Your way in my life.  Restore my family to their original creation design.  Enlighten the eyes of my heart so that I might hear from You and that I might begin to grow in the knowledge of Your majesty and understand my own standing in Your kingdom.  Thank you, Jesus.  Amen

Ephesians 1:17-20 (NIV)

I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit [of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better. I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people,  and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms,

 

FREE!

 

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Don’t sit and argue with the jailer when the gates are already open and you are set free!

Move.

Go.

Fly!

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Galatians 5:1 

Freedom in Christ

It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.(NIV)

Buried Alive…..

Buried alive….

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Buried alive is, buried alive whether it be in dishes, laundry, words or to do lists.  Any of those before mentioned situations leave you feeling exhausted and hopeless. As a mother you could be buried in the middle of all of those scenarios at the same time.

Frenzied with the back to school rush, I sat perched in the middle of a mountainous mass of clothing desperately throwing items into three stacks in the hopes of reaching a ‘manageable’ amount before me.  One load goes off to Goodwill.  A second to the outfits for now pile and a third to the clothes they will grow into later heap. 

Advice given should also be quickly sorted, so that we do not become entrapped under a pile that steals our very breathe. We are bombarded daily, moment-to-moment with what we should, could, maybe and might do.  Sort these messages according to God’s wisdom.

Some of the things, let’s go with most things the world says should go into the rejection pile.  The second batch of advice we should heed immediately for our own safety.  The third message may be stored for later because it’s depth of meaning needs further exploration or it has relevance for future use.

Few things spoken or written have had any impact on me that were not directly taken from God’s Word or were steeped in God’s wisdom.

We cannot have an impact on others without knowledge and use of the Word of God.  Our message will go into the rejection pile- were it rightfully belongs.

James 3:17 But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere.

Prayer:  Lord steep me in Your Word, light me on fire with it’s wisdom and power.  Let my words be aligned with and point toward Your Word and will.  Grant me wisdom to reject messages that lead my thoughts and deeds away from You.

Home before Dark

 

“Home before dark, my special girls.” Grandpa called out, as he bent to kiss the top of Grandma’s head. My sister and I smiled as we finished our breakfast.

We waited for Grandpa on the front porch; the squeak of the swing kept us company as Grandma sang our favorite songs.  Our spirits soared, as we discussed which flavor of ice-cream we were going to devour.  The beauty of the sunset, hushed us momentarily. Darkness settled in stealthy at first, almost drifting in, but now it was fully settled and oppressive in its finality.  The anxiety began to scurry out, the “what-ifs”.  Hadn’t Grandpa promised to be home before dark? If I am so special why do I need to wait? What happened?  Tension grew, as we watched Grandma force smiles through stiffened lips, in between hurried glances at the horizon.  The message, “We should worry”, was heard loud and clear.

Grandpa’s rust red truck burst over the hill; relief flooded us.  The answer to our question would he show up, was answered.  Why the delay- I still do not know.

Hosea 12:6

Therefore, return [in repentance] to your God,

Observe and highly regard kindness and justice,

And wait [expectantly] for your God continually. (AMP)

            The Hebrew word for wait and hope are the same.  If you are waiting you are hoping.  The waiting with expectation puts our hearts out there to be hurt.  When we are given what we think is the lesser thing or worse yet when life is immersed in pain- this is hardly what we expectantly desired.  It wasn’t the ice-cream treat.  We are left feeling unloved and unnoticed as our hearts lay crushed.

For God’s word to say, we should wait continually, not so subtly implies we may need to hope and pray through ‘impossible’ situations.  When we wait, continually expecting the Lord to show up, there is sweetness in the release.  The trick is the release– not to let the anxiety, worries, and “what-ifs” scurry into our lives and take control where God should be in control. I openly confess I haven’t mastered the skill of full surrender yet. I have a hard time submitting control if the waiting has anything to do with my children.  My own pain and struggle is tolerable, but to see my children flounder is torture.

Lord Jesus, we submit our longings and our pain to You.  We proclaim and declare we will not lean on our own understanding, but release our worries to You, no matter how long we wait.  The creator of the Universe has got this and He will show-up.  We praise You for the victory already obtained and we praise You when we do not get what we wanted, when we wanted it.  Grant us the peace that passes human understanding as we continually wait with great expectation for our King.  In Jesus name we pray, Amen.

 

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Why pray?

Why pray?

The short answer is:  To release the power of heaven onto earth.

If you are at all honest with yourself, then you acknowledge that you need a jump start in your prayer life.  I know I do.

I recently had a bizarre encounter with a friend who had become an ordained minister over a year ago.  His conversion story is quite the dramatic one.  Somewhere in his wandering he picked-up the pesky concept that it is an insult to God to pray for what we need.  He believes that, 2 Corinthians 5:17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new. When I called him to pray. He then went on to tell me that people that pray and ask for release from sin, and help in their daily life, were essentially saying that they didn’t believe God had made them new.   I asked him how giving up praying was going and he had a horrific litany of woes.  Here’s the thing, he still has a ministry he is leading and reads the bible a minimum of an hour a day. What had he stopped doing when his life took the major downward spiral?  He gave up prayer.  He said that he spoke scripture over his life (estimating more than 2 hours a day), but never actually talked to God personally.

Believe that you have the right, obligation and privilege to pray.  Walk boldly into the throne room.  Wait expectantly upon the Lord.

Hebrews 4:16 (NKJV) Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.

My favorite part of prayer time is the shut-up time.  When we pray with God, a dialogue not a monologue.  Our prayers are magnified.  When we listen to what the maker of the Universe feels that we need to be concerned about and pray about, all of a sudden there is vast movement in the atmosphere.  Lives are transformed and not just our own.  Ask the Lord who He wants you to pray for. I have discovered more often than not, it’s not me.

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Pray: Lord Jesus magnify my prayer life.  I come to you and ask for mercy and grace.  Reveal to me my heart, help me to know how to pray.   Let your love engulf me so that I might rest in your strength. Reveal to me your plans for my life so that I might walk in obedience.  I proclaim and declare my obedience to Christ.  Give me the next step and I will take it.  Thank you, Jesus for Your presence in my life.  I wait expectantly for your still small voice. I acknowledge you in all things and lay down myself so that I might hear from you. Who would you have me pray for today?  In Jesus mighty name I pray amen.

Whether?

Whether?

Careening around a corner the windshield wipers frantic in their pursuit of clear vision, the sun exploded in front of my eyes.  So intent on survival in the down pour, the sudden bright illumination confounded me.  What was that?  I have been in a place of strife and confusion as the Lord is shifting my life.  This movement and change has left me desperate for clear vision.  The sudden fulfillment of this desire was blinding.  The Lord had allowed me to experience a period of downpour, disillusionment and angst in order to demonstrate His glory and perfect vision,-when the light crashed in.

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I am a slow learner and require extreme contrasts in order to experience revelation.  I needed to be in a season of storms in order for the Lord to work out of me, self-reliance.  I have been in a holding pattern as I await the Lord’s movement.  There is nothing like waiting for the Lord, that brings out my innate desire to want to jump at relief.   Some sort of movement to ease the pain of waiting.  This has been an almost un-bearable time of trusting and waiting.

Then God showed up.  Mountains were leveled.  Things I believed were insurmountable, gone wiped out.  The sonic boom of God’s being enters, before His Presence ever fully manifests.  Every knee will bow, this isn’t just for some future day.  This is for today.  Choose to bow your knee to the Lord.  Someday every knee will bow- there will be no choice.  Choose to do so with ridiculous faith in the face of your current mess.  There are many things that will be accomplished within us when we reach the other side of heaven.  The only thing that can be accomplished on earth that cannot be accomplished in heaven is acting on our faith.  In heaven our faith will be sight, there will be no opportunities to ‘act in faith’.  Go ahead, be bold in your obedience and faith walk.    Whether your boldness must come in the form of submissive waiting or with the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, fully drawn and ready for combat. God will provide our circumstances, we must mix in our obedience and the beauty of this combined work will be a demonstration of faith.

I pray your faith will be bold!

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Prayer: Lord Jesus you know our hearts; both its treachery and beauty.  Restore our hearts to their creation design.   Show us that next step.  Create the path and we will walk it. We declare and proclaim that we will live our faith boldly.  Give us the strength to do so. Thank you for being faithful to work out, from within us, what is holding us back from a deeper relationship with You.    Thank you, Jesus Amen.