Friday, December 11, 2009

I just took my last final EVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! YAY!!!!!! Today begins the Christmas break and ends the first semester of my senior year here at Heartland. I haven't blogged in a while.... Honestly, I've been kinda backslidden. I have just been caught up in the things I have to do and the end of the year. But God has a way of bringing us back to our knees and reminding us of our dependence on him. He has certainly done that. Lots of things are going on right now and it's going to be a little stressful. Thankfully, it all happened at the end of the year so I have time to get things straightened out and work extra hours at work. I'm just praying for God's grace and mercy.
In Hebrews, it says "We have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feelings of our infirmities..... therefore let us come boldly before the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need."
I don't deserve help from God right now but all I can do is confess sin and come before him asking for grace and mercy for my time of need.
Well, this was just kind of an explanation of why I haven't written and a transparent post but I do have some things I want to post about soon so check back!

Saturday, October 31, 2009

He is working

"There are all kinds of circumstances on the road of life
I've had some sorrow, some trouble and strife
On my own I can't find my way to the Father's will
That's why I've learned to stand still

While I'm waiting God is working
He is working over time
While I'm hiding in the bushes
He is on the firing line
When I think the battle's over
When my back's against the wall
While I'm waiting God is working
He is working through it all

He's an ever present help in time of trouble in my life
He is my shelter my song in the night
What a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer
I know that he's always there"
-Legacy five

God is so merciful. Even when we are running from the storm, He is faithful and no matter what the circumstance, He is never removed from His throne. He is working in everything.... EVERYTHING, for our good and for His glory.

"When we worship the Lord, let’s remember that He is in control. Nothing alarms Him, or takes Him by surprise. Nothing is too big for Him to handle, or so small it escapes His attention. When the winds of my world begin to blow, He remains seated. When raging waves surround me, He governs their temper…I need not be moved … Because the Lord is seated and sovereign…He alone is sovereign."
- Ronald James -
"Take comfort, and recollect however little you and I may know,God knows; He knows Himself and you and me and all things; andHis mercy is over all His works." -- Charles Kingsley

I just need to wait on Him and keep serving Him and let Him work. He is always there. He is always working. He is faithful, even when we are not. Stop trying to find your own way through circumstances. Stand Still. Wait. Let Him work!

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Sweetness, Strength, and Satisfaction

I read this verse in my Bible reading the other day- Psalms 81:16- I don't have my Bible handy in front of me cuz I'm in the library but it says something like "...I would have given them honey out of the rock and I would have satisfied them..." I encourage you to go ahead and look it up.
This Psalm talks about how Israel wanted their own way. So God finally gave them what they wanted and let them have their own way only to their hurt. Then God says (not word for word) "If only my people had listened to me. If only they had walked in MY ways. If only they had looked to ME for direction. If only they would have trusted MY plans. I would have delivered them out of the hand of their enemy and I would have led them and I would have taken care of them." And then the last verse in the chapter is verse 16. I really like the verse so I stopped and asked God to show me what it meant.
It is important for me to say first that, the night before, I had been praying (and even asked my Tuesday night prayer partner to pray) that my devos in the morning wouldn't just be routine and dull. That God would really speak to me and that I would understand what I'm reading and take it to heart. That I wouldn't just forget it after about 10 minutes. AND HE DID DO THAT FOR ME! God is so good. :)
I thought about what that might mean... "I would have given them honey out of the rock..." Well, when I think about honey, I think about something sweet. So maybe God is trying to tell His people that He has so much "sweet" stuff for them. If they would only choose His way instead of their own. God is so so good. He is a loving Father and a true Friend. He is our protector and defender. Our refuge and provider. He leads us and knows every step that we take and every tear we cry. He knows our burdens and heartaches. The Bible says that He cares for us. The Bible also says that He sent His son to die for us because He "delights" in us. See... He is SO good. Why would we ever want to leave His side? He wants to give His people "Honey" :) But we have to choose to follow Him and let Him have His way. He has nothing but good in mind.
When I think of the rock, I think of something strong and sturdy and solid. God is our strength. O man, do I ever need His strength. I am so weak in so many areas. I don't have the strength to get out of bed in the morning or to discipline myself enough to do my devos every day. I'm not strong enough to be a good testimony or to handle problems with other people, like at work or fights with friends. I'm not only weak but I'm fragile and frail.... meaning easily broken. I have no strength to withstand the trials that come my way. I have no ability to overcome heartache and pain. I break under pressure and I'm emotional and I fall apart every time.... if I'm not leaning on my Rock. He designed us to be weak and fragile so that we would "Learn to lean" on Him. He wants us to give Him our burdens and not try to handle everything ourselves. See, when we give our problems to Him and lean on His strength and not our own, He gets the glory. And that's how He wants it since He is the only one who deserves it anyways.
And finally, the last one is pretty simply stated... God is our satisfaction. I know I talk about satisfaction a lot. It's just a burden on my heart. Every one looks for satisfaction somewhere, and too many people are looking in the wrong places. We look to friends, a girl/guy, work, money, acceptance, popularity, good grades, physical beauty, drugs, alcohol, sex etc.... And none of these things will bring that peace and fulfilment inside that we have to admit we are looking for. It's a God-shaped hole. He gave it to us so we would seek Him to fill it. We have to realize that there is so much satisfaction to be found in going His way. We may get what we want by going our own way but it will never satisfy for long.
"If only ___Jenny____ would choose my way and seek me. I would give her sweetness, strength and satisfaction like she couldn't imagine."
Put your name in the blank. :)

Monday, September 14, 2009

Devo- Be quiet

(This was the devo I gave this past weekend in the dorm... Something the Lord is working on me a lot lately)

I Thessalonians 4:11-12- And that ye study to be quiet and to do your own business and to work with your own hands as we commanded you; That ye may walk honestly toward them that are without and that ye may have lack of nothing.

Has anyone else ever told themselves to shut up before? I do it all the time. I can be in the middle of a sentence and realize it's going to come out wrong or that I should not have said that. Sometimes I look back on conversations I have had with people in the heat of an argument or sometimes even just a normal conversation and I think "Wow, you dumby, you shouldn't have said that." lol
In this verse:
Study means- labor or strive
Quiet- refrain from meddling or speech, cease, hold peace, be quiet, rest, properly keep one's seat, be still, undisturbing, peaceable.

Words have so much power. God made the worlds with His words. While we may not be able to speak something into existence, we are made in God's image so our words do have power. They have the power to build up or tear down. Proverbs 18:21- "Life and death are in the power of the tongue"

The book of James has a lot to say about the tongue. If you are having trouble controlling your mouth, I highly recommend reading that book. In chapter 3 verse 2 James says that if you can control your tongue, you are a mature Christian because it is very hard to do. In fact it says no man can tame it. (Thankfully we know someone who has the power)

Charles Spurgeon said "If all men's sins were bound into two equal bundles, one entire bundle would be sins of the tongue."
Some of the sins of the tongue (bold ones are the ones I struggle with a LOT)- Gossip, slander, criticism, complaint, angry outbursts, lying, pessimism, flattery, and sowing discord. (List taken from "Heart of a Handmaiden" - I forget who the author is)
Our tongue can do SO much evil! So I want to talk about Why and How to control your tongue.

I. Why-
A. Testimony (vs 12 of text verse)
1. If your mouth is constantly pouring our complaints then the lost world around you will see a God who does not satisfy. Not to mention you are just no fun to be around.
2. When we react to something in anger or speak without thinking first, we bring heartache on ourselves and on others and we bring no glory to God.
B. For the sake of others
1. Illustration- There was little boy with a bad temper, His father gave him a bag of nails and told him that every time he lost his temper, to hammer a nail in the back fence. The first day the boy had driven 37 nails into the fence. Then it gradually dwindled down. He discovered it was easier to hold his temper than to drive those nails into the fence. Finally the day came when the boy didn't lose his temper at all. He told his father about it and the father suggested that the boy now pull out one nail for each day that he was able to hold his temper. The days passed and the young boy was finally able to tell his father that all the nails were gone. The father took his son by the hand and led him to the fence. He said, "You have done well, my son, but look at the holes in the fence. The fence will never be the same. When you say things in anger, they leave a scar just like this one. You can put a knife in a man and draw it out. It won't matter how many times you say I'm sorry, the wound is still there. A verbal wound is as bad a physical one."
Our words have the power to hurt and scar others and our own testimony.
C. Once words are out of your mouth, you can't take them back. It's like trying to fit toothpaste back into the tube after you have squeezed it out all over the place.
The book "Heart of a Handmaiden" states- "A sharp tongue does nothing for your Christian testimony but cut it into little pieces." I know of girls who pride themselves on being "mouthy". For some weird reason they think it's a good thing. But it is not lady like or Christ like and really hinders your testimony with others.

1. James 1:19- Listen Before you speak!!!!!!!!!!!! That's all I need to say for that verse.
2. Remember that you don't always have to be right nor understood. Proverbs 17:27-28
a. Jesus is our prime example- He was mocked and ridiculed and beaten and falsely accused but he "opened not His mouth".
b. Just because you know something doesn't mean you have to say it. You don't always have to get your point across. (This is a big point for me) Sometimes it's better just to let things go. After all, it is sinful pride that makes us want to make sure the other person knows we are right, right?
c. It's not enough just to keep those critical, pessimistic, complaining, angry words to ourselves. I have learned recently that that is very tiring. By the end of the day I am just drained from fighting myself and the urge to open my mouth all day. It wears me out. So I have found that it is better to get RID of the thoughts that way you don't have to worry about saying them.
- Matthew 15:18 tells us that our words start in our heart. If I am having a problem saying things I shouldn't, then rather than just trying to keep my thoughts to myself (which is good if those thoughts do come, and they will) it's better to just keep my heart clean and not think those wrong thoughts in the first place. If it's wrong to say, there is a good chance it's probably wrong to think too.

d. Ask God to help you. Ps 141:3- A watchman was someone who inspected everyone who came in to see if it was allowed in the city or not. If we would pray the prayer found in this verse, and makes sure every word that wants to come out of our mouth is approved by God, we would save ourselves a lot of heartache!

"Lord, please keep your hand over my mouth and help me to be quiet"

Saturday, September 12, 2009

He is enough!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I am taking a Ladies Biblical Counseling class in school this year. One of the things we have to do in the class is called a "stroke file". We have to write down 3 things we are thankful to God for 3 times a day. So that's 9 blessings a day. Then on the other side we have to write down 3 things a day that we are thankful for about someone who kind of annoys us or that we don't get along with. We have to do it until like mid-October I think! But I think it will be good for me.
We are also reading a book called "Lies women believe, and the truth that sets them free". I think that's the name of it. It has been good so far. I have read 2 chapters and then looked ahead to the rest of the book. I can't wait to finish it. I think it will be a lot of help.
This past chapter was about the lies women believe about God. I discovered that one lie I believe about God (or at least portray that I believe it through the way I live) is that "God is not always enough". Sometimes I start thinking that God is not really all I need. I need a husband and lots of friends and support from those around me and plenty of money to where I don't have to go with out anything. I get to thinking that I need God plus this or that. The book took me to the Bible, to Psalm 23 and Colossians (I can't remember the reference and don't have a Bible handy) and showed me that I am only complete in Him! If I have Christ, I have need of nothing else. Hebrews 13:5- "I will never leave thee nor forsake thee..... be content with such things as ye have." If we have Christ and he has promised to never leave us, we have every reason to be content! He IS enough! ALWAYS!
This truth brings to light this point-
If God is all I need and I am complete in Him, then what point is there in looking for satisfaction anywhere else?! What point is there for me to look for some sort of completion in a guy or in lots of friends? Do I really need to be supported by those around me in order to have everything I need and be content? Is there any need to worry when I don't have enough money? God is all I need and I have Him! If I have nothing else in this world... no ONE else... I still have all I need. He will never leave me nor forsake me. All I have to worry about is ME leaving HIM.
I have someone on my heart (actually a couple of people) who I know are looking for satisfaction in things like money, cars, partying, friends, someone of the opposite gender, possibly even alcohol and other things.... I pray that they wake up and realize where that is leading to.... more emptiness! God is ALL you need. You are not going to be complete outside of Him. If you are not doing what he created you to do, if you are not in His will that he made you for, how do you expect to feel whole and like your life has purpose?!?!?!?! He designed you to be dependent on Him. All those other things (while not all are bad) will not bring lasting satisfaction.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Don't waste time!

Well, I'm back at Heartland. Things are going good so far. I'm starting to get a bit tired already but I'm very excited about this year. This week has been opening days preaching. It's been so amazing. I have gained so much from the sermons already! Today, Bro. Troy Derrell (not sure if that's how you spell it) from Tulsa preached and it was so perfect. He preaching on being prepared. He talked about the 10 virgins in the parable Jesus told and how 5 of them were foolish and unprepared. He applied it to salvation but then he also applied it to Christians who need to be prepared for meeting Jesus someday, prepared for opportunities that come our way and prepared for tempting situations or trials that could cause us to show a bad reaction. We need to be prepared for these things by staying close to God and staying in His Word.
He also talked about not wasting the time God has given us. He said that every day is a gift from God... You don't want to look back later and cry because it's over but rather smile because it happened. Meaning you don't want to look back with regrets that you wasted the time God gave you but you want to look back fondly because you used it wisely and took the opportunities He gave you.
Some opportunities never come back again. There are things in this life that can't be borrowed. Two of them are character and preparation. The 5 foolish ladies could not borrow oil from the wise. They should have had their own. When you get into a bad situation, you cannot borrow from someone else's preparation or from their character. You will have had to build these things yourself.... "What you do today determines what you will be able to do tomorrow." "Those who fail to prepare, prepare to fail." Don't waste the time God gave you. This was so what I needed to hear at the beginning of this year. It's my senior year. After this year, my college experience will be past. I don't want to look back on it with regrets that I didn't take every opportunity God gave me or that I wasted my time on things that didn't matter and I don't want to get out of school and, having wasted all that time, not be prepared to do what God has for me.
So remember- This day is a gift from God. It will never come back again. There will be opportunities that may never come back. Don't waste time and be prepared.
I hope this all made sense. It was a really great sermon. I will post something later about the sermon that Bro. Sam preached. It was SO good...... tune in next time.... :)

Monday, July 27, 2009

Turn your eyes upon Jesus

"Turn your eyes upon Jesus, look full in His wonderful face. And the things of earth will grow strangely dim, in the light of His glory and grace."
"Simply trusting every day, trusting through a stormy way, even when my faith is small, trusting Jesus that is all. Trusting as the moments fly, trusting as the days go by; trusting Him whatever befall, trusting Jesus that is all."

Ps. 25:15- Mine eyes are ever toward the LORD; for he shall pluck my feet out of the net.

I read this verse in my devotions a couple days ago and although I've read it before it really jumped out at me this time. I really tried to think about what it meant. I realized that it says "for..." That means because. So I put it all together- I don't ever have to worry about where God is leading me. If my eyes are on Him, then they are not on my feet, or on the distractions around me, or on a guy, or on my problems... they are on Him. And I think sometimes I worry that if I don't look where I'm going and if I can't see the next step then I will trip and fall and get hurt. But this verse says that if my eyes are on Him then he will make sure my feet don't get tangled in a net. If I just keep trusting eyes on Him, and let Him guide every step, then He will keep me from falling or getting caught up in something I'm not supposed to be in.
I worry a lot, and my parents can testify, about making the wrong choices and missing God's will. I always say..."Well, what if I choose to marry the wrong person, or go to the wrong school, or some other big decision.... then I will miss out on God's will and get messed up." Well, God promises that if we are seeking Him, and are really focused on Him, He will take care of which path our feet take. ..... That is so reassuring to me. I need to learn to better focus on Him... I think I'm learning all the time but I still get so distracted. But, keeping my eyes UP is the only safe way to travel through this life; although it may sound strange and seem foolish to the world.
Stop worrying about what path to take. God doesn't want us to worry. He wants us to keep our eyes on Him and let Him lead. He will keep us on His path if we are focused on Him.
Hope that all made sense.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

HE knows the plans

"Sometimes I feel so small, and wonder what God wants from me, What will I be?
I listen for His call, and try to wait so patiently, Though I may not see
And when I cannot find my way, I just remember the promise He made...
'I know the plans I have for you, I know exactly what to do, I will work a wonder for your good.
I will listen when you pray, Give you peace for each new day, Trust in me your whole life through, I know the plans I have for you.
The working of His hand sometimes seems so strange to me, it's a mystery.
I try to understand and follow everywhere He leads, For my heart believes
When I cannot see the end, I hear Him say it again and again...
I know the plans I have for you, I know exactly what to do, I will work a wonder for your good.
I will listen when you pray, Give you peace for each new day, trust in Me your whole life through, I know the plans I have for you.
Search me with all your heart, Seek me and you will find, A future filled with hope, The purpose for your life..."
-"I know the plans"- Lordsong

This has become one of my favorite songs. The verse in the Bible actually says -Jer 29:11- "For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end." The word "thoughts" in this verse means purpose. Expected means "the thing that I long for". God wants to give us what we long for (as long as our longings match up with His purpose) We know this from the verse in Psalm 37:4- "Delight thyself also in the LORD; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart." Our life is in good hands with the Lord because he has a purpose for our lives that He knows all about and His desire is to give us our expected end. The end that we long for. How encouraging! The part I like to put the emphasis on is the fact that HE knows the thoughts or the purpose. I don't have to know it. He already has it planned out. I may not know what the end looks like but He does. I may not know what to do, but He does. And He always has my good in mind- that is, to make me more like His Son. So if He is the one who knows the end and the purpose and the plan, all the more reason to stay close to Him huh? :)
Just some simple thoughts of encouragement today. If you struggle with wanting to know God's plan for your future like I do.... take this to heart. It could allow you to live with a little more peace.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

spiritual eating disorders

Eating disorders are so sad. Perhaps even more sad is when you meet a spiritually anorexic or bulimic Christian.
This thought came to me when I was thinking about a common illustration about a man who held dog fights for people to bet on with his two dogs. The man would always place his own bet on the dogs and he always ended up winning. One time, someone asked him how he always knew which dog was going to win. The man replied, "It's simple, the dog I want to win this week, I will feed and the other I will starve. The one who has been fed always wins." This is a good story to illustrate the fight that's going on between our flesh and our spirit. The side we feed the most will win. If we want to please God in all our decisions then we need to starve the flesh and feed the spirit. We do this through prayer, Bible study, involvement in ministries etc...
So I was thinking about that story when I thought about how some people starve themselves spiritually. They refuse to pick up their Bible or pray or sometimes even go to church or be involved. And yet, they don't understand why they can't win the battle against sin. Jesus has already won the war, but there are battles to face every day. If we are starving our spirit, we will be too weak to win against the lusts of the flesh. Anorexia is when someone refuses to eat and is therefore holding an unhealthy weight that makes them sickly and weak. What a shame that we do that to our spirit.
I did a little research on eating disorders for this post... Did you know that when a person is starved for a longer period of time, their eyesight worsens. I thought this was interesting. The longer we go starving our spirit, the worse our spiritual eyesight will be. We will not have the ability to see danger coming or to see sin as it is. The starved person's taste buds often disappear as well. I thought this was symbolic of how, after a while a spiritually starved person would lose a "taste" for God's Word completely. The muscles of the body waste away. There is also a disinterest in what is going on around the person. "Listlessness, tiredness and apathy may also occur. Dull spirit, possible irritability, and poor memory" are likely as well, according to research. Sounds like the same things that can happen if we starve ourselves spiritually.
I have to admit, I've realized that I'm backsliding a little this summer. I've started taking relaxation to an extreme and become lazy.
Lord, Help me to stay strong in the Spirit and not "starve" myself.
I also thought of how some people are bulimic. They do eat but then they force their body to get rid of it; afraid of what it might do to their body (afraid it might make them fat). I think we can do this to our spirit too. Sometimes we are going to church and maybe even reading our Bible but what we take in we "throw back up". We don't allow it to nourish us and grow us. We hear what we should do or not do but we are afraid of what will happen if we listen so we take it in and then throw it up. (Excuse the crude language. I wasn't sure how else to say it). We need to stop being afraid of what God might ask of us or how it might change us and take in His Word. What is the point of reading our Bibles if we never hold on to it and let it change us?!?
James 1:23-25
23 For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass:
24 For he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was.
25 But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed.

Just some thoughts. Don't starve your spirit and take in what He wants to tell you. Don't spit it back out.
May the Lord help me to do the same.

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Sad Stumbling

"Where am I today I wish that I knew
'Cause looking around there's no sign of you
I don't remember one jump or one leap
Just quiet steps away from your lead
I'm holding my heart out but clutching it too
Feeling this short of a love that we once knew
I'm calling this home when it's not even close
Playing the role with nerves left exposed
Standing on a darkened stage,
stumbling through the lines
Others have excuses, but I have my reasons why
We get distracted by dreams of our own
But no body's happy while feeling alone
And knowing how hard it hurts when we fall
We lean another ladder against the wrong wall
And climb high to the highest rung, to shake fists at the sky
While others have excuses, I have my reasons why
With so much deception it's hard not to wander away"
-Nickel Creek
I'm not going to pretend to fully understand all the words to this song but I gotta say, I think I get the main idea and I like it. It's talking about backsliding. Realizing that you are far from the Lord and not even knowing how you got there. Sometimes we get so distracted and pulled away from God. But it's not like we take one huge leap from his side and end up in the dark. It's the quiet steps away from His leading. We even come to the point sometimes where we start calling the backslidden place we are in "home". We get comfortable there and convince ourselves that we are where we are supposed to be. And most of the time... WE KNOW BETTER! We are just playing a role. Somehow we have stopped seeing God as holy as He is and stopped seeing sin for as bad as it is. On top of that, we start making excuses for why we are the way we are. I think it's interesting that the song says "Others have excuses, I have my reasons why." That's exactly what we do. Our pride blinds us to the fact that all we are doing is justifying ourselves in our own sight and making excuses not to follow God.
I've been listening to this song over and over lately and every time I do, I keep seeing visions of people that I care about who were once a big part of my life who have now turned away from everything that they were taught and knew.... KNOW... to be right. I see them in my mind plastering a smile on and feeling so bad inside, not living with true peace. I can see them literally stumbling around in the dark, alone, getting farther and farther from God because they have hardened their hearts. And every time He tries to get their attention through His Word or maybe through a difficult circumstance, they blame Him and become more bitter. It really makes me feel like crying. It makes me wanna cry tears of helplessness because I feel that there is not much I can do for those people. Just watch them mess their lives up and live a life that they have convinced themselves (by lying to themselves) is ok and even making them happy. But we all know that when we backslide into the world and into sin we end up feeling empty and alone. And "no body's happy while feeling alone."
But there is one thing I can do for those I know who have chosen that road. I can pray... I can beg God to open their eyes and to send such strong conviction that they can't escape it. And, as hard as it may be, I can pray that God would do whatever it takes to get their attention... To bring them back to Himself. I can pray that He would show Himself to them in a powerful way. And I can be a good influence whenever I have opportunity. I can live the life I know God wants me to and be living proof that only He satisfies.......... It makes me want to step it up a notch in my Christian life.
"God has created each of us with a thirst that only He can quench."
"Teach me that if I do not live a life that satisfies Thee, I shall not have a life that satisfies myself."
"The soul of man bears the image of God; so nothing can satisfy it but He whose image it bears."
"Having been created by God for God, the "self" can never be "self-satisfied." Yet, having lost sight of the God revealed in the Bible, all we can see is our self, with its futile drive to meet its own ever-changing but never satisfied cravings for the second-rate pleasures of this world."
"On the one hand we long for God and on the other hand we run from Him. Accordingly, instead of seeking Him out to find lasting meaning, we turn to other things instead to try and satisfy that deep, spiritual thirst inside, only to discover it is like drinking salt water… We can never find success in these things under the sun because we were never meant to find lasting profit in them but only in God."
"Real satisfaction comes not in understanding God's motives, but in understanding His character, in trusting in His promises, and in leaning on Him and resting in Him as the Sovereign who knows what He is doing and does all things well." ................ AMEN AMEN AMEN! I LOVE THIS ONE!
Isn't it sad when we, as Christians, know the true way of peace and satisfaction, and decide that we know a better way? How silly we are.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Dumb stuff

Things you didn't know about me...
Do you have your own room? Yes... for the first time in 4 years
-Is your closet usually messy? not usually. Every once in a while though.
-Do you have a box of “this and that’s"? Yes... My junk box. I actually have several
-Where was the last place you went outside of your home? The church
-What are you listening to right now? just buzzing of computer and ticking of a clock
-When was the last time you went to a mall? don't remember. Probably about a month.
-What color is your toothbrush? pink
-Name one person that made you smile today? Rachel
-What were you doing 45 minutes ago? Just sitting down to the computer
-What is your favorite candy bar? Don't eat much chocolate. I like carmelos and milkyways and twix and kit kats
-What is the last thing you said aloud? "So we don't have the books for vbs yet?"
-What is the best ice cream flavor?Chocolate fudge brownie
-What was the last thing you had to drink?milk for breakfast
-What are you wearing right now? kulots (however you spell it) and my heartland t-shirt. Im totally looking like a bum today
-What was the last thing you ate?Eggs and toast
-Have you bought any new clothing items this week? lol... yeah
-When was the last time you ran? The other day at the river... Rachel was trying to drag me further out in the freezing cold water and I lost my flip flop in the current!
-If you could go anywhere in the world, where would you go? Venice but there are a million places i would love to go.
-Do you take vitamins daily?nope but i should cuz i don't eat anything healthy
-Do you go to church every Sunday?yes
-Do you have a tan? NO! I'm pasty and I hate it! lol... Im gonna work on it this summer
-Do you like Chinese food over pizza?never!
Do you drink your soda with a straw?when we eat out, I use a straw but everywhere
-Who was your last text to? Ryan Davenport... which is weird cuz we hardly talk
-Are you someones best friend?I think so...
-What are you doing tomorrow? Not a clue. I don't start work til next week
-Where is your dad? Out working on the truck
-Look to your left, what do you see?a desk
-What color is your watch?don't have one... I have a cell phone
-What are you doing right now?Waiting on my mom cuz I rode with her up here to the church.
-What color is your hair? light Brown
-What is your favorite thing to wear? Jean skirt with a cute top... preferably black or brown.
-What is your favorite thing to do? watch movies, talk to my family, read, i don't really know. Go to the river or go to an amusement park and ride a huge roller coaster. There that sounds a little more interesting.
What do you usually do all day? Now that it's summer... watch tv or run errands with mom until i start work next week. Then it will be running in the morning, work, cooking dinner, anything else that needs to be done and then tv before bed
-What do you like better, Shoes or Sandals? flip flops or my slip on crocks
-Do you like to shop? of course
-Do you use chap stick?I'm addicted to it.
What is your birthstone?Emerald
-Do you go in at a fast food place or just hit the drive through?It depends on what we're doing, who I'm with, and how long we have.
-Do you have a dog?yes- Daisy and Gilbert
-Last girl you talked on the phone with? mom
-Any plans today?it's late afternoon. Rest of the day just gonna be organizing my room and finishing unpacking from school
-Do you dye your hair?no, I use to tho
-Can you say the alphabet backwards? probably not
-Do you have a maid service clean your house?yeah sure- when my brother and i are MADE to do it. lol ok that was corny.
Do you like cats?yeah they are ok. Dogs are better
-What’s on top of your dresser? perfume, knick-knacks, pictures, and my earring box.
-Have you ever been to Six Flags? yes! I love it!
-Have you told the guy/girl you like that you like or love them? I have told the guy i liked that I did... unfortunately...but i can honestly say that I don't like anyone and haven't for a while now. It's a good feeling.


I'm finally home from college and I couldn't be more thrilled! I needed a break from OKC that's for sure. This past year seemed so different. It seems like every year things get more difficult or maybe it's just that the problems are so different. My freshman year school work was hard and I dealt a lot with homesickness. Sophomore year, first semester was good although I let myself get very distracted. Second semester was hard and I did a lot of crying. But at least I had my best friends and we still had our good times. This year... the whole year... things just got worse and worse. I struggled with my own spiritual battles and then big time homesickness, and fighting with friends... one of my friends got a guy and that was different... especially since it was an over-the-phone relationship since he did not go to Heartland. It didn't help that I was roommates with her. So it's just been a different year... I struggled with things that I never really had to deal with before. But through it all, I think that I learned A LOT! This has probably been the most growing time for me at college. So I am thankful for that. But I'm still just thankful to be done and to be able to rest a little. It turns out that growing is a tiring process.
I still have to have a job this summer. I will be working at the same daycare I did last summer. I also have a lot of plans to stay busy. I want to lose a little weight this summer by walking around the track in town. I want to do a lot more cooking and get better at that. I will be taking turns with another lady in the church teaching children's church and teaching the pre-k and k vbs class for a week. I'm excited though.
Well... hopefully I will do a better job at keeping up with this over the summer. I will try to post tomorrow.
"Laziness is nothing more than the habit of resting before you get tired."
"When you stop growing, you start dying... Nobody ever arrives."
"Growing up is a process, not an event."

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Guilty as charged

I have a nasty habit of thinking that I have everyone around me figured out. I'm really bad about thinking that everyone has double motives and that people don't really mean what they say. I suppose the reality of it is that I struggle with being judgmental. Wow, I'm sure being transparent. A thought struck me out of no where today... I hate it when people think they know my motives and they judge me based on who they THINK I am and why they THINK I'm doing something. Now, isn't that something. Maybe the reason I always feel like people judge me and falsely accuse me is because I do that to other people.
So this thought hit me as I was walking back from class and when I got in my room I decided to read my Bible some more since my time was cut short this morning by dorm duties. So I opened up where I left off in Luke 6:27-49- It's all about loving your enemies (which I needed to read) and forgiving (which I also needed) and JUDGING others. It says "Judge not, and ye shall not be judged: condemn not and ye shall not be condemned: forgive and ye shall be forgiven." If I don't want others judging me and my motives then why should I feel at liberty to do that to them. Goodness! This is something that I need to work on.
I was also reading vs 39-49 about being a hypocrite. It was like that was written just for me. The words "Thou hypocrite" in the middle of verse 42 seemed to be directed right at me. It might as well have said "Jenny, you hypocrite..." I always seem to know what is wrong with everyone else but do I do much to try to fix my own problems? I'm not one to sit around and act like I don't have problems but do I do anything to fix the ones I have. Before I can help anyone else or judge anyone else or lift someone else up, I first have to get myself right. I need to stop being a hypocrite! Stop pretending! Stop trying to judge others when I do the same things. Stop trying to help others out of their sin when I still struggle with getting up to read my Bible everyday. Lord, Please help me!

Saturday, April 4, 2009

loving the unlovely

I watched fire proof while I was home for spring break. I ABSOLUTELY LOVED IT! I didn't really think much about how I could apply it to my life (since I'm not married) until I came back to school. I was thinking about the part of the movie where Kirk Cameron is telling his dad that his wife just keeps rejecting him after all he's done for her and she just spits in his face and treats him like dirt. He says "How can you love someone who treats you like that?" His dad makes his point about how God loves us even when we spit in His face after all He's done for us.
This puts things in a different light. I get so angry sometimes at a friend who ignores me for someone she thinks is more important right now. What's even more irritating, I think, is the fact that she keeps saying that she loves me and that we are best friends but she won't treat me like her best friend. In fact we are very distant. It would be different if she would just admit that right now, this other person is more important to her and she doesn't care about my opinions or spending time with me. It may hurt my feelings but at least I wouldn't feel hurt and lied to.
Now, here's what I've noticed... This scenario could easily depict my walk with Christ. I ignore Him so often for someone or something else that, in my mind is more important. On top of that, I still tell everyone, and tell Him, that I still love Him and want to spend time with Him. But in reality, often times I am distant from Him and really don't act like I care what He thinks or that spending time with Him is valuable to me at all. Now, how can I rightfully be so angry at someone doing that to me... I do the same thing to the Almighty God who loves me beyond measure.
And another thing- Even after Kirk Cameron starts really trying to save his marriage and doing all these sweet things to show his wife he cares, she is still mean to him. Does that stop him? No. He just keeps giving and loving. I believe that this is because he realized what kind of love he had been loved with (by Christ) and that placed on him a burden to love his wife the same way. We should be trying to love others with the same love that Christ gives us.
This is something that I think is going to take me a long time to fully grasp and practice consistently but it's helped me tonight, specifically. Hope it has made someone think about how they have been loving others.
"You can give without loving, but you cannot love without giving"
"If I cannot in honest happiness take the second place (or the 20th), then I know nothing of Calvary's love... If I am perturbed by the reproach and misunderstanding that may follow action taken for the good of souls for whom I must give account; if I cannot commit the matter and go on in peace and in silence, remembering Gethsemane and the cross, then I know nothing of Calvary's love..." Amy Carmichael

Monday, March 23, 2009

The Christ in Me

My friend gave a devotion in the dorm the other night about complaining. Her point was that others are constantly watching us. What do we want them to see in us? When others see us having a bad day or complaining, it makes them think that Jesus is not capable of making us happy. Why would they want a part in the Christ who cannot satisfy or bring true joy? We may not always be bubbly and giddy but even when we are not having the best day, we should display a joy and peace that tells others that we will be ok again. This circumstance is not the end of the world. We don't live without hope.
So what do we complain about and how do we stop?
Well, # 1- we complain about our circumstances: The weather is bad, my hair is messed up, I was late to class, I'm hungry, I have a headache, I'm broke, some girl is being mean to me, my boyfriend broke up with me.... many many many other things... the list could go on forever. Notice though, that most of these things cannot be changed anyway. We have no control over them. But we do know the one who is in control of every circumstance. Let's take our problems to Him instead of bringing those around us down and gaining a bad testimony. This is something that I will have to be working on a lot!
The second thing we complain about are the rules in our lives. This majorly applies to me in college and probably to those of you who are in high school as well, but this can also apply to any Christian who is living with standards in their life and sometimes wonders "What is the point. I don't want to wear these skirts anymore. I want to listen to that music I use to listen to. I want to watch this movie." We have a tendency to complain about the rules that our God given authority have set over us. It might help us to not complain about our authority or the rules if we look at the life of David. David was being chased by the king. Saul wanted to kill him! David knew that Saul was the one in the wrong and that he had been anointed the next king of Israel. But even when he had a justified opportunity to disrespect Saul, he didn't. In fact he gave him more respect than he deserved. God blessed David for this.
Now, if David, who had every right to complain, was still respectful and took his problem to the Lord, don't you think we can to? Who do others see in you? The Christ that makes you complain, or the Christ who makes you joyful in spite of rules and circumstances?
Just something to consider. Sorry it's been so long between posts. :(

Monday, March 2, 2009

Devo- The Blessing of Burdens

This is a copy of the devo I gave in the dorm on Saturday night. It's kinda long and one of the stories is a repeat from an earlier post but if you can read through it all, I hope it can help someone.

The blessing in the burdens

Everyone is always telling us to look on the bright side of things. Sometimes that is hard to do when you are struggling under the load of a burden. But there are some blessings wrapped up inside those burdens.

I. The first blessing is that God always has a purpose in bringing trials upon our lives.
A. Tea cup story- A couple in England passed a china shop that had a lovely teacup displayed in the window. When they went inside to see it more closely, the teacup suddenly spoke. "You don’t understand. I haven’t always been a teacup. There was a time when I was a lump of red clay. My master took me, rolled me, and patted me again and again. I screamed for him to stop, to leave me alone. But, he continued to mold me, answering, ‘Not yet.’"
"Then, I was placed on a wheel and spun around and around. It made me dizzy, spinning on and on like that. But the master didn’t stop when I begged him to take me off the wheel. He continued to shape and to mold me."
"Then, he put me in the oven. I had never felt such intense heat! I wondered if he wanted me to burn up. I screamed and beat on the door to get out. I could see the master through the opening. I read his lips, as he said, ‘Not yet.’"
"Finally, the door did open. The master picked me up and put me on a shelf. I began to cool. That felt better. Suddenly, he brushed me and painted me all over. The fumes were terrible! I thought I would surely choke to death. I was gasping for air and hurting inside from the heat and choking on the fumes."
"Soon, he put me in another oven that was twice as hot as the first one. I knew for sure this time I would surely suffocate. I begged my master to stop. All the time I could see him shaking his head and saying, ‘Not yet.’"
"I felt there was no help. I knew I could never make it. I was ready to give up. Just then, the door opened. The master took me out and I could see that he was pleased with his work. He handed me a mirror and told me to look at myself. I did and said, ‘That’s not me! It couldn't be! I’m so shiny and beautiful!’"
The master said to me: "I want you to know I had to roll you and pat you to give you shape. If I had left you alone, you would have dried up. I know the wheel made you dizzy and sick, but if I had stopped, you would have crumbled. I know it hurt and was hot and unpleasant in the baking oven, but if I had not put you there, you would have cracked. I know the fumes were bad when I brushed you and painted you all over. But, you see, if I had not done that, you would never have hardened. If I had not put you in the second oven, you would not have survived for very long, for you would have been brittle and would have soon broken. Now you are a finished product. You are what I had in mind when I first began with a lump of clay." ~Anonymous~

B. Romans 8:28 tells us that God is working all things together for His good purpose. That good purpose is to make us more like Christ. He makes us more like Christ by bringing trials into our lives sometimes. These trials serve one of two purposes:
1. To teach us a lesson. Sometimes we get prideful and need to be humbled in order to be more like Christ. Sometimes we stray from Him and He has to use difficult circumstances to bring us back to Him. Sometimes He has to use difficult circumstances to soften our hearts so that he can mold us and shape us.
2. To make us stronger in Him. It is during our hard times that we find ourselves singing "I need thee every hour". If there were never any problems then we wouldn't know that He could solve them. We would go about thinking that we could handle it ourselves. We learn to depend on Him through our hard times.
So, the first blessing in our burden is to know that God always has a reason. He always has our best in mind. He is trying to mold us and make us beautiful and useful for Him.

II. The second blessing in our burdens is that we don't have to bear them alone.
A. Psalm 55:22, I Peter 5:7
B. There once was a family that consisted of a husband and wife and their little girl. One day, the wife was killed in a terrible car accident. The night of the funeral, after all the family had gone home, the man took his little girl home for the first time with no one else around and they were very lonely. The man tucked his daughter into bed and flipped the light switch. She gasped as he did and cried "Daddy, I'm scared. I can't see you. Can I come sleep in your room?" "Sure, honey" the father said. They climbed into bed and the daddy kissed the little girl goodnight. He reached over and turned the bedside lamp off and the little girl started crying again. "Daddy, it's dark in here, and I can't see you. Are you still here?" "Yes, sweetie I'm still here" the dad reassured her. "Well are you facing me right now?" she enquired in a concerned voice. "Yes, I'm facing you." "Okay, then I think I can fall asleep now." And within a few minutes she was fast asleep.
In the dark of the midnight, the father lay awake. He missed his wife terribly. He was so unsure about the future and how he was going to raise their little girl. His heart was broken. Finally, he slipped out of bed and onto his knees. He prayed "Father, It's dark. I can't see you right now… are you still here." He felt the Lord say "Yes, child, I'm still here." "God, I'm scared… are you facing me right now." "Yes, Child, My face is always turned toward you." "Okay, then I think I can go to sleep now." The man crawled back into bed and fell fast asleep with the peace of God in his heart.
C. Whatever burden we are carrying, the Lord tells us not to fear. He is right there beside us. He promises that we don't have to bear these burdens alone. The only stipulation is that he wants us to cast them on him. This requires action on our part.
1. I work at a daycare and there are times when a child, somehow, gets their hands on something that is dangerous for them to have, like a pair of scissors. I immediately go over and take it from them. But there are some times when a child has something that I simply don't want them to have at that moment. It could be a toy or someone else's sippy cup etc… In this case, I go over and say to the child "You need to give that to me. It's not for you to have." I stick out my hand and I expect that child to give the item to me. I am bigger than him, so I could take it by force. But how much better is it for that child to learn to willingly give it over to the one who has authority over them.
2. God may take things from us that are harmful to us without asking for it. But he tells us to GIVE Him our burdens. We have to be willing to lay it in the hands of the one who has authority in our lives. We have to trust that he knows what's best. When we learn to give it to him, we show trust and respect.

Conclusion- When you find yourself shouldering burdens that are too heavy for you, remember that there are a couple blessings we can see in them. 1. God always has a reason. We may not know it right now, but in time he will reveal it to us. He is trying to make us beautiful and useful for Him. 2. We don't have to bear them alone. God is ready to take our burdens. We just have to be willing to give them to Him. Lay them at His feet and don't pick them up again.

My mom gave me the story of the teacup and Bro. Claud Slate, my youth pastor when I was in high school, gave me the one about the little girl. :)

Thursday, February 26, 2009

It's His choice

There was a man preaching Sunday school about a month ago in Bro. Gaddis' place while he was out preaching and he preached on the story of Jesus healing the blind man. The pharisees got so angry and were asking the man and his parents about it and the man just told them "All I know is that I was blind but now I see". At the beginning of the story the disciples ask Jesus why the man was born blind. Jesus answers- "...that the works of God might be made manifest in Him". Something that the preacher mentioned almost in passing stuck with me... We do not get to decide how God manifests His glory through us. The man was blind from birth for no other reason but that God might get the glory for healing him. It seems as though it would not be worth it to that man. But how great it must be to know that God chose to show himself mighty through your circumstances. How awesome must it have been for that man to finally have a reason for his sufferings and to know that the reason was that God's glory might be made manifest through him.
We cannot say "I want God to manifest His glory through me" and then expect that he do it through our preaching or teaching or singing ability etc... We must accept that sometimes God chooses to show himself through us through our hard times and difficult circumstances. He does show himself through some people's preaching and teaching and singing but some he chooses to work through their trials. If you are going through a hard time or have difficult circumstances in your life, remember, God may have put you there or allowed that to happen because he has chosen to manifest His glory through your life...He just chose to do it through your trials. Are you going to make it easy for Him to show himself through your trials by peacefully accepting it and learning from it so that you can share it with others or are you going to lose your testimony by complaining and becoming bitter? He is God, is he not? He gets to decide how He shows himself mighty. Trust Him.
"If I never had a problem, I wouldn't know that He could solve them."

Monday, February 9, 2009

Conforming in a good way

I was reading in Philippians this morning. 3:10 was what caught my attention today. In the preceding verses, Paul was talking about how if anyone was justifyed in having confidence in the flesh, it would have been him. He was elite. But then Paul goes on to express that it didn't matter who he was or what he had. Everything he was and had hindered him from serving Christ the way he should. He was knew that it wasn't about how good HE was, but about having God's rigteousness and KNOWING HIM. We focus on that part of the verse a lot and rightfully so because it is a great thought... to be able to KNOW Christ Almighty. But I've really been trying to do more than just read lately. I've been trying to dig a little deeper and write down what I find in a journal. I think it helps me to apply it to everyday life, to remember it, and to think about it on a deeper level when I write down what I read in my own words and write down what I can take from it.
Well, I noticed that not many people preach about the end of that verse that says, "being made conformable unto His death". I thought about what that means for a bit and what I thought about was... "Why would we want to be conformamble to His death and not His life?" So I asked myself..."What was it about Christ's death that I would need to apply to my life? The more I KNOW Him, the more I know of His death, right? So what do I know of Christ's death?
I know He was forgiving. I need to be conforming to that trait. But what else is there about His death? What kind of death was it that I need to be conforming to?
It was a death of Sacrifice. I need to learn what it means to show devotion by sacrifice. Have I ever really given up anything of real importance for God? Convicting question.
It was a death of Surrender. This goes along the same lines but I think more of surrender of self-will. Jesus said "Not my will but Thine be done." I need to have this attitude in my life. I need to let go of what I want to do and just trust my Father and what He has for me.
It was a death that showed great love for others. This is something that I need to work on. Showing others that I really care for them and love them.
Lord, teach me to love people like you love them.
This is the kind of death we are to be conformable to. It makes sense now, doesn't it. I probably didn't reveal anything new to anyone but I had never personally thought about what it meant to be conformable to His death.
Just some thoughts from my Bible reading. Hope it made sense.

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Learning to keep my mouth shut

I've decided to do a study on the mouth. I have discovered that I have serious issues holding my tongue. I always say things at the wrong time or, more often, say things too harshly because I don't think before I speak...I just say what I feel without stopping to think if that was appropriate or necessary to say. I hate knowing, as well, that some incident could have been taken care of if I would have carefully chosen a different tone of voice and watched how I said it. I also like to argue. Well I hate arguing but I do it because I want to be right. Again, it's a pride issue. But the Lord is really trying to teach me something about it because lately I have been in situations where, as much as I want to argue my case and make a point and make someone else feel as bad as they just made me feel or give my opinion, I have got to learn to keep my mouth shut. So I decided to go through my concordance and write down all the relevant references on the mouth. I'm going to, along with the rest of my Bible reading, go over a verse or two each morning and try to memorize it and do my best to apply it through out the day. It's only been a couple days but I have already been able to apply it. I will tell you this, it takes some humbling. You have to swallow your pride in order to keep your mouth shut. But I feel closer to the Lord already. It's really cool to be close enough to the Lord right now to be able to say a silent prayer in my mind whenever I talk to someone and ask Him to guard my mouth and give me wisdom in what I say and how I say it. And He Does!! And so many fights and bad moods are avoided and I feel good cuz I know I'm doing the right thing.
If this is not an area you struggle with, I encourage you to find some area in your life that could use some work and just do a study on it and memorize scripture about it and ask the Lord to help you specifically in each situation where you are faced with it. It could be in the area of worrying, gossiping, lusting, thinking bad or mean thoughts about someone, pride etc.... God promises to take a step toward us if we first take a step toward Him: "Draw nigh to God and he will draw nigh to you." (side note- I don't have my Bible in front of me or one handy so I don't know for sure if that's quoted exactly right or where the reference is).
"Lord, make my words as sweet as honey, for tomorrow I may have to eat them!" --Anonymous
"Help me guard my lips, O Saviour, Keep me sweet when sorely tried, Answers soft to others giving, Meekly swallowing my pride." --Basch
"Among my most prized possessions are words that I have never spoken." --Orson Scott Card
"The difference between the almost right word and the right word is really a large matter -- 'tis the difference between the lightning bug and the lightning." --Mark Twain

Friday, January 30, 2009

Perfect Psalm 37

So... I have problems with caring too much what other people think. I hate it when people think bad of me, especially for something I didn't even do. It's never enough for me to just know that I'm doing right... I want others to know that too. It's dumb... I know... It's actually a pride thing. And I also have problems with wanting other's to do things right. It bothers me when other people don't have the same standards as me or when they don't care about the rules or when they don't have the right attitude (even though I am like that sometimes myself). It gets me all frustrated and mad when other people won't do the right thing when I'm trying to.
So I read Psalms 37 today and it was so perfect. It just talks about how we need to not worry what the wicked are doing... just keep doing right. God will take care of them in His own time. He promises so. It was so amazing because not only did this chapter address that issue but also my other one. Later in the chapter it says not to worry when others judge you wrongfully. Who cares what they think. Then it says :"The Lord...will not condemn him when he is judged." What I took from that was, don't worry about what others think. Know that you are right with God and that He is okay with who you are and don't worry about how others judge you. Yes, be careful of being a stumbling block but if you know you are right with the Lord (and always take time to consider if you are) then DON'T WORRY ABOUT IT! I'm really trying to focus on that. I have some more to post about so I'm gonna try to make it to the library tomorrow. Check back with me. :)

Friday, January 23, 2009

It's all good!

Psalms 34:9-10---"O Fear the LORD, ye His saints, for there is no want to them that fear Him. The young lions do lack and suffer hunger, but they that seek the LORD shall not want any good thing."
When I first read this verse, I must have been having a dense moment cuz I was thinking..."they that seek the LORD shall not want any good thing... why would they want bad things?"
lol Then I realized that "want" in this verse means to lack. They that seek the Lord will not lack any good thing. Have you ever known that something was right to do but did not really want to do it because you were worried about how it might turn out? Like you knew the Lord wanted you to give your money to a missionary who came to speak or that He wanted you to give your time to the bus ministry or some other area but you were worried about finances and losing too much personal time. Maybe you knew it was right for you to talk to a certain person and befriend them but you were afraid of what others would think of you. Maybe you knew it was the right thing to do to say stand up and say something when all your friends or co-workers were talking bad about someone or using the wrong kind of language but you didn't want them to think you were too much of a weird, goody-goody. Have you ever known it was the right thing to do to talk to a friend about some choices they were making but were too afraid of them getting mad at you? That has all been me at some point in time, some even recently.
God says in these verses that we should be more concerned with pleasing Him than what others think. We should fear God enough to know that He holds our very lives in His hand and He is all powerful and mighty. This realization should push any fears of not having money or friends or personal time out of the way. Our fear of the Lord should outweigh any other fear we may have.
God says that if we do fear Him the way we should so that it motivates us to live for Him no matter what, He will take care of us. It's a promise! We will have no "want" or "lack". When we are seeking the Lord and are concerned with what He wants for us, He will always make provision. He will make sure that we have friends (even if He is the only friend we have, He is enough, right?), provision, protection, and even some rest time. He promises. Is He trustworthy or not?
I think it's interesting that he says you shall not want any GOOD thing. This reassures me that He only wants my best. If I ever do lack something, then that probably means it wouldn't be good for me, at least at that time. For instance... right now, I lack a man! lol.... But obviously it wouldn't be good for me to have one right now because He said I would not lack any GOOD thing. He knows what He is doing. I love how he is constantly reminding me of that.

Monday, January 19, 2009

A new theme

Every semester the Lord seems to give me a new theme. Some verse in the Bible or some character trait or some truth of Himself to meditate and work on throughout that semester. My freshman year it seemed that He wanted me to know that He was the best friend that I could ever have and that he could provide. This was probably because I knew no one when I first came and I was always broke. Sophomore year, He taught me that His love and His strength were always enough. It was during this time that I lost many friends, including one guy that I was considering for marriage. God proved to me that it didn't matter if every single one of them left, He was always enough. He also taught me a lot last year about surrendering my will for His perfect plan.
Last semester, It seemed that every message and devo had to do with love. Loving others the way Christ loved them and doing so without dissimulation or hypocrisy.
This semester, Many messages have zeroed in on a specific topic that God has shown me in my personal Bible reading as well. Focusing and living a more godly life. I love Psalm 27 and Galatians 5 and 6. That is where I was in my Bible reading but I haven't really moved any further since I found them a couple of weeks ago. I just keep reading them again every morning. Psalm 27 is teaching me 3 things...
There is a verse in there that says "One thing have I desired of the LORD, that will I seek after, that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the LORD and to enquire in His temple." This verse says to me: "FOCUS!" What one thing have I desired of the Lord? In my heart of hearts, I want to marry a godly guy and serve with him in the ministry and someday be a godly mother. That is the one thing in life that I pray he will let me do. If I could keep this desire in the front of my mind at all times, it would probably change the way I live. It would change who I hang out with, and who I give my heart to, and what kind of music I listen to, and what I fill my mind with through movies, and what comes out of my mouth, and how I handle difficult situations and people... It would affect a lot if before I make any decision at all I would remember.... I want to marry a godly guy and be in the ministry.... think about that. What do you want most from the Lord? For all of us, it should be to hear "Well done thou good and faithful servant." That desire would change a lot too!
Later in the chapter, it says "When thou saidst, Seek ye my face, my heart said unto thee, Thy face, LORD, will I seek." How often do I really, whole heartedly seek the Lord? Not nearly as often as I should. Seeking the Lord must be about more than just saying a quick prayer in the morning or before bed. I want to try this semester to truly know what it means to SEEK the Lord.
The last verse in the chapter says "Wait on the Lord: Be of good courage, and He shall strengthen thine heart; Wait I say on the Lord." Wow, what a hard thing to do! I have posted about this several times so I won't go into much right now but this is something that I need to learn to do better. I need to patiently wait for the Lord to provide... provide finances, a husband, the next step in my life... everything. I just have to wait and be of good courage. I have every reason to face this waiting with courage... God is in control and He knows and only wants what is best for me. Plus! He promises that if I do wait patiently and with courage (trust) then he will strengthen my heart. I'm not gonna die!
Galatians 5 and 6 simply talk about walking in the Spirit and not fulfilling the lusts of the flesh and also the fruit of the spirit. I'm trying to take time to focus on each one... so far I haven't gotten past love... it seems I need a lot of work in this area.
Well, I will get back to the "Walls" at a later time. In the meantime, hope this was a help to someone. This is just what I feel the Lord is working on me about this semester. I will keep you posted!

Monday, January 12, 2009


Brother Ted Inman preached a message the other day about Joshua and the walls of Jericho. He talked about how strange it must have sounded for God to tell them to march around the city a certain amount of times and then blow trumpets and yell and the walls were just gonna fall down at their feet. Bro. Ted pointed out that the only reason the walls fell was because Joshua obeyed and believed. He did what God told him to do, even though he didn't understand, and believed that God would do what was best.
Then he talked about some of the walls we face in our lives. Today I just want to talk about one wall. I will post about the rest at separate times.
The wall of Waiting-
We all have times in our lives when we are waiting for God to work. Some are waiting for healing, some are waiting on financial provision, some are waiting for lost loved ones to come to know Christ. Personally, I'm waiting on the Lord to show me who I'm supposed to marry. Sometimes it can feel like it is NEVER going to happen. I get discouraged about that sometimes. It seems so far away. But I must just trust God. I have to just do what he tells me to do right now, which is go to Heartland, major in elementary ed., learn to love others better, get to know Him better, do my devotions, pray etc.... I just have to obey and BELIEVE that God has a plan and will do what is best for me. This exact same concept can apply in any of the above-listed situations.
"It's hard to rest within His will, It's hard to trust and just be still, It's hard to simply wait until it's all made plain.... But He who holds us in His hands has no problems... only plans. He works in all things.... for His own glory and our best good."
Hope this was a help to someone. Thanks for reading!