Hello My Name is ________ and I am a child of the ONE TRUE KING

Jordan was the inspiration of this song. 

Jordan was left at a drug rehab after being kicked out of college. He felt worthless. His parents didn’t know what to do and did the best they could for him. All of our parents tried to do the best they could for us. Yet, this world is wounded and wounded people will wound their children. We’ve all been hurt by those who left when they should have lingered, who hit when they should have held, who yelled when they should have yielded, who lied when they should have led, who have cheated when they should have been committed, who have tolerated when they should have treasured…. That wounding leaves us all feeling WORTHLESS. Worthless means less than the value of being human in my heart and mind.

Here’s the thing … the glorious truth…. We are not defined by anyone or their actions. They are all feeling worthless and doing worthless actions revealing who they are. It reveals who we are when we do the same…. The voices and lies do not define us unless we let them.

The entire world may not know this word…… floccinaucinihilipilification but I knew it most of my life it was the skin I worse for close to 45 years … with unconditional love that label has changed to “accepted in the beloved” ….. Eph 1:6 …… a challenge to your thinking cap sure. Yeah I had to google right there myself  when I discovered it as well.

Here’s the thing .. and I am going to skip formality of grammar and just lay it out … .. it’s a huge huge word …it is usually used just for the curiosity of knowing a very long word… but truthfully ..this word is the mountain that most can’t climb… I would look at that mountain daily and I can tell you …. … feeling worthless is one of the biggest faith wreckers in life…. We can’t do much for good and for God feeling worthless. We have no fountain to love others from…… BUT HEY….. hey!    Wait…… God has said we are priceless ….. he loves us unconditionally….. even SIN doesn’t interrupt his love Romans 5:8 so… as his children …..

Feeling worthless (like nothing) causes us to do nothing….. and doing nothing will cost you everything….

Regret said this to Restoration….. “Because you don’t know the future, have faith in GOD who loves you like crazy and has already seen you in your future……..  Trust the love of GOD beyond reason even when you don’t “feel” like it. Know that you are so valuable he gave the most precious part of his glory he could give …. his life…. and became confined to a resurrected body for all eternity…. walk in that …. bathe in that …. be saturated with the power of the LOVE of GOD and let it beam from you to a world plunged in darkness that can’t find its way beyond feeling worthless even on its best day ….. Let GOD’s love flow from his amazing unending supply to and thru you to others as we all learn …. I John 4:18 truly “there is no fear in love”

If you want to know this love… contact me I’ll definitely share it with you.

The Drudge of Grudge

A grudge is the most selfish and pridefully destructive thing. Unpacking this today (not because of anyone having a grudge against me but because of working with people about forgiveness) 

Here’s the thing about a grudge. It does’t accomplish anything good. A grudge always produces bad fruit. It may punish a person who loves you but really how Biblical is that? It definitely causes you grief and blocked love. Even putting the Bible aside how emotionally healthy is that? Bottom line is this. If you are holding a grudge you now have taken the lower road. 

Great offenses happen but when we hold grudges we are really exhibiting how self centered and prideful we are. I am not diminishing the pain a person can cause another. There are huge huge hurts in this life. Molestation, rape, divorce, and every offense you can imagine. What I am saying is the best way to recover is to not hold a grudge. It’s self destructive. The offender doesn’t deserve that much energy from your life. Your hands deserve to be empty so you can receive love and hear from God. God even warns us how destructive this is. He tells us it is better to correct it ourselves than to have him make the adjustment. As a child who has been violated in the past in severe ways. I can tell you I never experienced all of the freedom in Christ I now have until I let go and emptied my hands of those who hurt me so God could fill my life with his love that has never hurt me. 

How can you hold a grudge and satisfy Mt 5? 

23Therefore if thou bring thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy brother hath ought against thee; 24Leave there thy gift before the altar, and go thy way; first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy gift. 25Agree with thine adversary quickly, whiles thou art in the way with him; lest at any time the adversary deliver thee to the judge, and the judge deliver thee to the officer, and thou be cast into prison. 26Verily I say unto thee, Thou shalt by no means come out thence, till thou hast paid the uttermost farthing.

  • When you run with a grudge (unforgiveness) it might look like this (from dictionary.com)
  • Synonyms 
  • 1. bitterness, rancor, malevolence, enmity, hatred. Grudge, malice, spite refer to ill will held against another or others. A grudge is a feeling of resentment harbored because of some real or fancied wrong: to hold a grudge because of jealousy; She has a grudge against him. Malice is the state of mind that delights in doing harm, or seeing harm done, to others, whether expressing itself in an attempt seriously to injure or merely in sardonic humor: malice in watching someone’s embarrassment; to tell lies about someone out of malice. Spite is petty, and often sudden, resentment that manifests itself usually in trifling retaliations: to reveal a secret out of spite. 4. envy.

     

    Dear ones CHOOSE freedom. It is all about choices. 

The million dollar question ~ WHY on earth would you let people you had a horrible relationship with in the past rob you of a great relationship now?

The difference between head knowledge and heart knowledge is

 FREEDOM!!! Sweet glorious stand in the rain and wash me clean FREEDOM!!!

THIS IS HOW IT FEELS TO BE FREE! 

Head knowledge keeps us in our heads where we can war with the flesh and all our damage and by fear justify everything even victimization. Head knowledge that never makes it to the heart is useless. It will never get you where you are destined to be because without heart there’s no honey. They didn’t have enough heart to go into the promised land. It was right before their eyes. What is right before your eyes that you are going to let pass you by because you see giants in the land?

Miracles and changed lives happen in the heart where the Spirit draws and leads.  I know I AM ONE. WOW! what changes in my life this year. What heartache and disappointment but what PEACE! The treasures we lay up in heaven and eternal perspective happen in the heart. The head is where the trappings of the world and our damage lodge until we kick them out by forgiving and being free to love. THE whole thing can be summed up in one word.

CHOICE

UGH NOT THAT WORD! you don’t know what I have done or been through!!!

Let me say I probably know more than you imagine and if you can imagine it I can say I have probably experienced it at my own hands or the hands of others.  We all come from a story that isn’t “Leave it to Beaver” or “Andy Griffith”

FOR ME that distance from my head to my heart seemed like miles much of my life. I can’t tell you the sleepless hours and loneliness I felt.   I can’t tell you the ways I tried to build a bridge from one to the other. Life was so stuck in a never ending conversation in my head that went something like this.

Why couldn’t it be different? Why did the people who were supposed to love me so broken? Why did I get stuck in the situation I was in life? Why couldn’t I have normal parents? Why was it so hard to love me? Why am I always hurt. WHY WHY WHY on and on

Why was the beginning of every sentence and the end was always the same.? Oh I beat why to death. It frustrated me at times and sank my life at others.  How was the twin to why. How could this happen again to me? How could they not love me? How could they not see me? How could people neglect a child? How could my brother drown because my Dad let him? That doubt and fear was the wrecking ball causing all of the why’s and how’s that kept me defeated. I was my own worst enemy!

I could get a good feeling for a bit but the problem with that is this. You can’t feel your way though life. Feelings are fickle and tricky.  They ride in on emotions that launch from our damage and lies told to us that we have leaned on. They enjoy playing like children in the conversation in the head that keeps us down and unproductive.

Feelings always have to follow foundational things that do not flee. TRUTH brings FREEDOM and feelings always have to follow. Truth is always first. You will follow what you believe. Believe TRUTH.

The truth sets you free because it always leads instead of follows feelings.  Again the cure is CHOICE. It shouldn’t surprise us that the same thing that brought us to CHRIST ….. CHOICE……  is the same thing that keeps us healthy in Him. ……CHOICE. …..

What are the choices?

The first is to let go. Yeah this is where you want to scream and hit me.  But I know by experience that this works. Simply let go of what ever is stopping you and keeping you down. What ever self defeats your purpose, passion and proceeding in life.  We make letting go so hard but it’s simple. Jesus didn’t die for you to stay broken. His kingdom doesn’t do a half baked saving job. HE saves and restores, cooperate with his plan. Your’s isn’t working. I know mine sure didn’t. My plan kicked my life all over the map. 

You always have the choice to hang on and continue spinning your wheels in the rut you have dug or that has been dug by damaging people for you. You can stay in the bad thinking and mire that keeps you bound and blocks love.    Or you can CHOOSE to break free by making a decision to break free. Choose to stop letting the people who have hurt you in the past affect your future. The million dollar question…. drum roll…. .

WHY on earth would you let people you had a horrible dysfunctional relationship with in the past rob you of a great loving relationship now?

Who are they to do this to you???? Why do they have power over you??? The answer is because that is what you have learned to do. You have learned to live as they have taught you to live. The power you give them is the reason for a lot of hurt and damage in your life.

YOU can now CHOOSE to live differently.  You can relearn and be restored. If you can’t choose this then God has perpetrated the biggest lie on the entire universe.  Hang it up turn off the lights and close the door. REALLY? HECK NO! Get a grip and a clue. They have hurt you and caused you great baggage but you can throw it away and choose forgiveness for you. FORgive them FOR you. Let them off your hook with all of their crazy damaging definitions of who you are or who you are supposed to be and be WHO YOU ARE meant to be. Stop playing the tapes in your head! GOD put you here for much more than to be held back by people who do not give it one thought to hurt you.

Don’t abandon yourself.

This may be the difference between having wasted life and a GREAT life.

Show up in your own life and start writing a new story. One of hope and freedom and forgiveness.  Please contact me if you want to know more about this. My heart is for you to be free and I can tell you how freedom happened for me.

Does it get any better than this?

Ezekiel 36:26
A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh.

No matter how you shade it. There’s nothing magic about it.

Some of the mistakes I have made in life I can’t change but I can change making those choices again. This is on my heart so I feel as if I have to say it. Sometimes we have to bring light to the darkness. I would hate for my precious friends to get caught up in the hype of something and not realize how bad it is…. So… lets talk about a couple of media events going on right now. There’s a lot of buzz about 50 Shades of Gray and Magic Mike. Sometimes people want us to separate religion from our every day lives. Almost as if we are having a co-existence. One with Christ and one with life. I see myself once I am saved as a supernatural being having an human experience. I can no more separate what my eyes see or body experiences from my identity in Christ than I could unbake a cake. I can’t sit and simply think that seeing graphically sexualized media doesn’t affect me in many ways. My heart would be deceiving me if I thought that. I know by experience in the past that it takes a long time for images like that to leave my memory. Usually media that is overtly sexual defrauds true sexuality where a woman’s beauty is more than her body and a mans strength and value are more than physical. The lines become blurred. I think it would be intellectually dishonest to say you can watch or read something tawdry and be unaffected by it. Don’t misunderstand me! I am not saying anyone is a bad Christian or that I am better than anyone. I am saying it’s dangerous and unwise. I love how GOD’s word says our desires are to be toward your mates. From a divorced perspective if that had of been true in my marriage I would still be married. It’s a safe guard to keep your heart and mind from outside influences. Marriages struggle enough without inviting third party influences into them. Before you crucify me for saying this understand that I have been through quite a bit and I know whereof I speak. Peeking in a door you aren’t going through isn’t wise. 50 Shades and Magic Mike are over the top sexually explicit. The nudity in Magic Mike IS PORN by definition and watching it is ill-advised. The verbiage in 50 Shades is porn as well ….. I say this without apology and as truth in love. Protect your hearts, your marriages and your minds. Infidelity brings great sorrow and when a man or woman leave a marriage emotionally for outside influences that brings grief as well. Protect your mind with severe intention and you will be glad you did.

God tells us a lot about guarding our hearts and minds. What a precious Father he is to protect us with such great wise words.

Oh be careful little email what you speak.

Our God is a God of second chances and sometimes those second chances come right away and some take years. When I try in my own strength to help that is when my intentions may be good but my method may be faulty. When we do not wait on God this is bound to happen. We have to really look inside for the answer and seek the Lord. I would not hurt anyone for anything in this world. I would sooner cut off my own arm. I love people and I know why God hates divorce. The aftermath it creates takes years to overcome. When you see another person really in the midst of the war it is heartbreaking. Your heart remembers the pain and there’s nothing you want more than to right the universe for them. You want their family to survive because their story hits so close to home and yours didn’t survive. You want to spare them pain and you really do have to be careful that you don’t get yourself in the way. One of my own rules was to let the weaknesses be God’s business. God wants us to put the past behind. There are times I am assigned by GOD to help and those times work out for good and his glory. Then there are times my heart leaps to action before GOD has assigned me and those times always end in a huge lesson for me. Discernment is something you always have to practice. The price is always high when we do not wait patiently for the Lord. I learned the hard way that anytime I run ahead to help where GOD hasn’t intended that I help the price that I pay is that I forsake my own mercy. Jonah 2:8 Sadly humbling!
“The Lord is like a father to his children, tender and compassionate to those who fear him. For he understands how weak we are; he knows we are only dust. Our days on earth are like grass; like wildflowers, we bloom and die. The wind blows, and we are gone- as though we had never been here. But the love of the Lord remains forever with those who fear him. His salvation extends to the children’s children of those who are faithful to his covenant, of those who obey his commandments!’. Psalm 103: 13-18

It’s Gonna Be Alright Child

I already know this post might cost me readers but I will say this anyway. People get spooky about GOD working so directly in a life but this is really happening and besides I have no way of knowing who reads this blog anyway so hopefully you will hang on. I can’t just leave this unsaid.

I was praying earlier putting something out of my control into God’s hands just like I did with a hard situation about an airline ticket a few weeks ago. I know GOD can work and move in this and I am confident HE will make a way where there seems to be no way. My heart knows what it knows! Yet the hurt I feel is normal grief over a loss and I run like a child to a fathers lap to Psalms 139 where GOD says there is no darkness in him at all! Even my darkness is light to him.. I was going to end my time with the LORD with a song to encourage me and this one came right to my finger tip. My freedom started with a DJ freedom weekend where I learned that my life was exchanged with Christ on the cross. He who knew no sin became sin for us. That opened up healing for me that continued through a series of rough storms. All were allowed by GOD even if orchestrated by me or others. This song starts where my broken journey started with divorce and it ends where my journey seems to be ending …. Deeper in love with Him.

A few messages ago my Pastor preached on the fire that tries us. One of his points was that if you want the fire to ease up you might delay your growth. I prayed at the altar that GOD would not turn down the heat. I had been seeking more refining when I even posted here a few weeks ago that same idea about delaying growth in your life. In my daily devotions I had asked God to show me where I am weak and I knew that I had been affected by the world I work in and by my past just trying to survive in a way that wasn’t always refined to say the least and that I still needed to learn some things the right way. It was no coincidence that at Bible study tonight the Pastor talked about going back to where your roots are and check out what you can keep and get rid of what isn’t true. Holy COW!

I have friends who blog here about great things about God who share great spiritual truths. I guess I am the poster child for blogging about great spiritual whippings.

To me what is happening in my life IS a great GOD thing. GOD is answering my prayers and the heat is turned up. I asked GOD to deal with me about an issue after I disappointed someone and he is doing that! I hate it too but it’s necessary… He is not letting me off the hook in any way. Do you understand how huge that is? Little old me? I never thought this would be happening in my life and I am sadly excited. I am just a peon in the universe but GOD is working in my life showing me things I have never understood before. Sometimes when I read my Bible lately it’s like I am picking up a new book. Mind you I have several degrees from religious schools. Yet when I read in Psalms 103 that he pitieth his children and knows our weaknesses wow… that hit me like a brick. I must have read that tons in times past but the intimacy of it didn’t hit me until a few days ago.

Why am I typing this in the wee hours of the morning? You know GOD answers prayers and not the way we always think he will. He’s answered mine and even sent affirmation through foolish things like a returned airline ticket, a preaching message (he called it foolish take it up with him), a song that spoke right to my heart and said … Deb you don’t have to carry this one or think your past is to blame. Hear me I am calling … fall deeper in love with me. My love is enough.

You prayed for something and it fell in your lap but the answer came through the fire. It came in the form of pain but was what you prayed for. Now you doubt what is before you. God can even use what looks like a mess to you to give you a clear message. Don’t miss the answers to prayer. Open your eyes and trust your GOD not your past.

Little Bob ~ How Not To Live

He was only 5 years old and from all I have heard he was a precious sweet child that was very tender. My earliest memories of him were scarce. I remember running past the open door of the mobile home we lived in making huge leaps as Momma hung out clothes. We were trying to keep her from seeing us. We laughed and often ran into each other scrambling like the 3 Stooges and fell backwards. I remember him lying very still in a pretty bed ( I didn’t know at the time it was a coffin) and not waking up. My Uncle Jimmy was holding me and I wanted to give him my chewing gum. I couldn’t figure out why he didn’t wake up. My Uncle Jimmy would tell that story for years with tears in his eyes. They sang Jesus Loves me at his funeral and that song made my mom and grandma cry every time they heard it for years. I always thought of Mom and Bob every time I played it as a solo for offering in the little church I attended.

I remember my grandmother saying she wished she didn’t let him go with my Dad that day. For the next decades Feb 16th would be the day he died and Feb 18th would be my birthday and the day he was buried. It was always the counter for the number of years he had been dead. I remember my Aunt Jean who missed him terribly for a while until she had her own children. I wondered what life would have been like with him. I am sometimes thankful that he was spared some of the things I have seen. I remember every year going to the attic to get Christmas decorations down for Mom and there being a little box of his clothes and a pair of shoes on top. We never disturbed it but each time I saw it I felt something deep inside that I couldn’t put words to. I could see the same feeling on Momma’s face as his name was mentioned. Everyone called him Little Bob, he was named after my Dad.

They said they found my Dad wandering up the highway after Little Bob drowned in the Catawba River. The stories I heard about his drowning didn’t make sense to me for years. The truth I found out years later would put the puzzle pieces together for me but for the sake of the living I will just not put that here. I know Bob’s death changed my Dad in a way that my brother and I would have to experience the rest of our lives. I remember how disturbing it was that no one talked about that day. Truth was that no one talked about anything too hard in my family. Avoidance was the standard operating procedure and using words was foreign when it came to deep matters of the heart.

I will always miss Little Bob.

I grew up with a little brother who was hilarious and mischievous as well. I love my partner in crime and baby brother James. We have fought the greatest fights over the years and I have seen him struggle and I weep for his losses. He gets up and keeps going on and I admire his ability to do that.

I am writing this today to share hope with people who have experienced the loss of something sacred. The story didn’t end with this tragedy being an epitaph. There were a lot of miserable years of lessons learned in those years for me and my family. Dad avoided the pain by being distant from his children and by staying busy. Mom spent the rest of her marriage trying to open up my Dad’s heart again. It wasn’t possible for most of their lives together. Then one day….

We always went to grandma and grandpa’s to have Easter dinner. Her tiny house was under a grove of pecan trees and was the most magical place to me. I loved playing on the big porch swing under those trees. Grandpa took advantage of free labor getting us to pick up pecans when they fell in the fall. We would catch lightening bugs under those trees and sleep in his T-shirts after begging momma to let us spend the night. Grandma had great quilts and made pallets for us on the floor. She was precious and often let me and my cousins tear up her kitchen to make cornbread. We argued over who would stir it.

This Easter my Dad didn’t feel well. Dad was never sick so this was concerning. My Mom confided that he was throwing up blood. The next day a doctors visit turned into a string of test that revealed he had cancer. I remember the jolt to my heart hearing my Dad was sick. It always seemed as if he was the pillar of my life even though we didn’t have a close relationship. I always trusted the strength of knowing Dad was there. I watched cancer humble and soften Dad. It changed him enough to hear the call of Christ in his life and become saved. Dad became more gentle and attentive to my Mom and had opened up to her a bit more. After several years of being a human science experiment they gave him a clean bill of health. He didn’t go back to his old promiscuous and wild ways. The change was real! I thank God for being able to see that. Still the residue of growing up in a home much like the one he had created kept him from saying the words. He went back to work and stayed as busy as ever. The change was great to see and was still there but he couldn’t be vulnerable as I hoped he could yet.

Mom had been through so much she was thankful for the reprieve but I think she was regretful of all the lost time. She loved Dad with all she had and gave selflessly to him. He freely took her love and returned it when it suited him until the final years. It was bittersweet now. They could have had so much because both were capable of so much, but the noise of the world rang so loud to Dad he couldn’t hear her or be himself.

I remember seeing his eyes when Laura was born and he held her. It registered in my heart for the first time~ this is what Dad looks like when he loves someone. I had never seen that growing up. I don’t think the world could contain his joy at that moment.

Laura was 9 months old when my Aunt called at work and said in a matter of fact way. “Get home your Dad is dying.” Unfortunately Dad had been given a clean bill of health but they didn’t know that he cancer had spread to his brain and he went from functioning one day to not functioning the next. It was hard to watch. Mom tried to take care of him at home but it overwhelmed her and he had to be moved to the hospital. I can’t tell you how it feels to see your Dad who was a rock become like a child and then disappear all together. I wanted to hear the words but now he couldn’t say them. I slept on the floor of his hospital room for 4 days as Mom slept in a chair and as my Uncle Charles attended to things for my Dad. No one can ever repay Charles for that heroic way he had of showing love to his brother in those final days. I couldn’t leave Dad’s side and I loved him dearly. I wanted him to know that beyond the words I loved him. I knew in those moments as he struggled to breathe, all that had happened in his life was probably running through his mind and I ached for his painful memory. I also was thankful for the fact that I knew I would see him again.

Dad took his last breath and as me and my brother stood by his side with Mom my heart fell to my feet. Now there would be no more words. His funeral was amazing. Dad had helped a lot of people and a lot had seen the change in him. Several flower shops ran out of flowers in the tiny town of Fort Mill, SC. I remember holding my grandma who seemed to break that day as she said goodbye to her son.

Where’s the encouragement? Well as painful as that memory is and as painful as my childhood could get sometimes I want to say there is hope. The hope isn’t in the memories or the reconciliation. Dad and I never got to say the words. The hope is in forgiveness and letting go. Parental damage can cost us more than we understand in future relationships. Holding on to the past will rob you. If you have had parents in the past who formed some damaging experiences for you I want to tell you that I found freedom in forgiving them and letting it go.

No one can make up for what your parents did or didn’t do and if we are not careful we will expect a future relationship to equalize that damage. The goal of future relationships is not to repair our past. The goal is to forge ahead into a great future.

I love the memories I have of Little Bob. I was greatly affected by his absence in my life. I was also greatly affected by the lack of Dad’s love as well. Yet today, I can look back and remember the great times and have healed from the rough ones. I use the hard experiences to teach me how “NOT TO LIVE”

Here’s the difference between now and how I had lived much of my life. Now I see my life as a journey that was necessary to make me the woman I am today. I totally understand how to forgive and get past these things. I also know what healthy whole love is. (not that I know everything, volumes can be written about that) What I am trying to express to you is that you can get there. You can get to a good place where you deal and heal. Don’t let the past define you or the tapes that keep playing in your head. Get to know yourself and who you really are warts and all. Then realize that God is crazy about you warts and all.

Learn to love and be loved by God and to give and receive love from someone else. I spent most of my life asking why?? Why did I grow up in this family, why did Bob die, why did Dad die, why did my best friend die? why did I lose 2 babies, why did my husband cheat, why is life so hard??? Now I don’t wonder why anymore. The question is not why for me. The question is who am I and who is God in my life? I know the answer to those two questions is this. I am a child of the King who loves me and my life and He is my Father who sees me as priceless. When life happens and I get hurt I always come back to this.

The giants in life are going to come and go. The free will of someone is going to slam into me and can cause joy as well as pain. The conclusion of the whole matter is that GOD is my God and I will love him anyway trusting all that happens is for my good and His glory. That doesn’t mean I skip down the road. It just means I am raw and real with it and face it knowing at some point it will be in my past and can’t be allowed to rob my future.

Dear ones, forgive, grieve the loss and go on. There’s life out there and precious time is a gift. Don’t sacrifice a great future on a bad past.

When God ran to me

Reposted from 2008 in honor of all God has called son who have fallen in this world but still are loved by a Father whose love is perfect. A Father who ran down that long road to meet them and said my son has come home again! Happy Father’s day Sir.

When GOD ran to me. Click here to listen

Luke 15:11-24 A

11And he said, A certain man had two sons:

12And the younger of them said to his father, Father, give me the portion of goods that falleth to me. And he divided unto them his living.

13And not many days after the younger son gathered all together, and took his journey into a far country, and there wasted his substance with riotous living.

14And when he had spent all, there arose a mighty famine in that land; and he began to be in want.

15And he went and joined himself to a citizen of that country; and he sent him into his fields to feed swine.

16And he would fain have filled his belly with the husks that the swine did eat: and no man gave unto him.

17And when he came to himself, he said, How many hired servants of my father’s have bread enough and to spare, and I perish with hunger!

18I will arise and go to my father, and will say unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and before thee,

19And am no more worthy to be called thy son: make me as one of thy hired servants.

20And he arose, and came to his father. But when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him.

21And the son said unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in thy sight, and am no more worthy to be called thy son.

22But the father said to his servants, Bring forth the best robe, and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet:

23And bring hither the fatted calf, and kill it; and let us eat, and be merry:

24For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found. And they began to be merry.

This story has a very significant meaning in my life. I did pack up all I had and run from GOD. I didn’t live riotously but I did waste my substance. I spent all I had physically, emotionally, and spiritually and was left desolate. For a season I lived beneath the calling GOD had placed in my life at salvation, the calling we all have to be salt and light to the world. You all know what I am talking about. I am talking about the kind of living we do waiting on living to happen. The kind of self absorbed reckoning with our lives at the cost of being right with GOD.

Whatever is in your life that is distracting you or keeping you from dealing with your “swine trough” is a stronghold.  That swine trough could be pride that keeps you from forgiving someone, it could be doing a “work for the LORD” that is nowhere near God’s plan for your life. It could be a trough of indecision or the game of “waiting on the LORD” Where did GOD say to wait on him and do nothing while waiting? I see myself so much in the statements above. This prodigal got to the point he felt he was no longer worthy to be called his father’s son. Have you ever said these words? God I am not even sure I am saved and I doubt I am your child because I am here in my pig trough belly aching when I could be at your table. WAKE UP folks we can’t do this long and not feel like swine and degenerate despots.  We can’t run from a holy and just GOD and feel nothing or expect no conviction. When we neglect to face our issues we create a reality that very far from real. Human nature can justify almost any action but there is a clear and true standard that answers most of our questions in dealing with almost any situation. That standard is God’s Word. Our hearts are wicked and will deceive every chance they get.

Can you imagine the scene? I am going to paint this picture for you in modern times using a modern situation. Imagine a woman coming down a long road after being ravaged by divorce from a 20 year first marriage when she had served God with all that she knew how. Then to be followed by a precious second relationship  that failed because of disobedience to God’s Word. Finally to move out of her comfort zone  to total devastation in a city far away from all she knows and loves.  She has done all she can do and knows to do to try to make it in this world. Her heart is broken and she doesn’t even feel worthy to be a daughter of such a Father. A Father who she thought at one time considered her worthy to be His child. In her mind she is thinking any closeness I can have to Him even to be His servant on the outside of the family is better than what I have sought in the pleasures in this world. She feels unlovable, rejected, and torn to pieces. She feels no hope out there where the prince of the world is Satan. Her heart divides her each choice she makes because she is not whole, healed, or able to decide what is right anymore.

Slowly she begins to read about her Father’s love, care, compassion, sacrifice, and understands that is where it all should rest. She doesn’t place her confidence in those who pull you into the swine trough any longer.  She is remembering as David often did in the Psalms of God’s goodness even when people you love make terrible mistakes that hurt you. She begins to read her Father’s Words with passion seeking jewels of his grace, guidance, mercy, love, and understanding as well as righteousness. Her head lifts and she prays earnestly to the only hope she has in this life. Father, I have sinned, I have taken your grace and disgraced so much with my life with fear, doubt, and directing my own steps.  Her prayer is a long road, but she is not left journeying that distance alone. When the Father sees her heart is broken HE begins to run to her. As each prayer she prays indicates her total surrender His steps pick up even faster. He takes her to his chest and shouts to those around to begin to celebrate. He clothes her with his clothes, not the clothes she was wearing in the world. Her prayer ends where it should have began, in the arms of GOD. He restores her to the status that she had before she fell. He restores her to the heir and daughter she was.

The point of this story is of course that I am that woman. The other more important point is that through prayer and God’s word I was able to stop being her and by HIS grace learn my Father’s heart for me by His Word. I know folks tell you all the time to read the Word. We think a few minutes on Sunday when the preacher gives a message is enough to last all week. I am telling you not reading the WORD and praying daily is spiritually going to starve you and make you weak for hard times. Life is hard but GOD is good and we will lose sight of that if we neglect knowing Him intimately by reading the WORD. Begin today to know the heart of GOD by reading HIS love to you in written form and accepting His love demonstrated to you in the Cross of Christ. Email me if you want to know more. Blessings 🙂

I ran under his wings.

Under His Wings By New Manna Youth Choir

I can almost pinpoint the day my universe began to slide out of orbit. I knew the enemy of the soul had created a storm I had no choice but to endure. I remember when it hit how I had felt so destroyed. The best way I can describe it is this. Imagine walking across a field so tranquil and so serene with your husband who is your best friend and your children. Then you feel a sharp pain and grab your heart. There’s blood and you have been shot. You are not sure where it came from but you put your hand up to stop the bleeding. Another pain occurs and you have been shot again. You cover that wound with your other hand. You look around but there’s no help. Third shot and you realize it’s your best friend shooting. Your heart shatters and your knees buckle. How can this be? Where is my safety? How on earth could this happen?

You have no hands left. Two more shots and you realize your children have been hit. You can’t cover all the wounds. You are all wounded and there is nothing you can do. Even to this day when I hear this song, I remember. I was sitting a New Manna the night they sang this. Tears streaming down my face as they do now. I knew then that day in the field was coming, knew the enemy was looking for me and that I was soon to be alone in this world. I can’t describe the pain better than that.

Nine years later when I hear that song I am a different woman. Oh, I would have given anything for my children to not have been hurt by divorce. I would have never in a million years wished that for their lives. I have to say though that I am thankful.

How on earth can I be? How on earth can anyone be? Well it’s been a journey. I live every day of my life with a choice I didn’t make. I have been alone now 9 years. It’s been a hard road and is a hard road. I won’t mince words on that. I have real joy though and wouldn’t take nothing for knowing what I know now.

I learned something from it that I praise GOD for. I learned that under the wings of the almighty is the only place I could find out who I was in Christ. The most joyously painful lesson I have ever learned. I have learned that GOD is in control of everything and that everything that happens is for my good and His glory.
Nothing describes it like Psalms 91

 1He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.

 2I will say of the LORD, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust.

 3Surely he shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler, and from the noisome pestilence.

 4He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust: his truth shall be thy shield and buckler.

 5Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night; nor for the arrow that flieth by day;

 6Nor for the pestilence that walketh in darkness; nor for the destruction that wasteth at noonday.

 7A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand; but it shall not come nigh thee.

 8Only with thine eyes shalt thou behold and see the reward of the wicked.

 9Because thou hast made the LORD, which is my refuge, even the most High, thy habitation;

 10There shall no evil befall thee, neither shall any plague come nigh thy dwelling.

 11For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways.

 12They shall bear thee up in their hands, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone.

 13Thou shalt tread upon the lion and adder: the young lion and the dragon shalt thou trample under feet.

 14Because he hath set his love upon me, therefore will I deliver him: I will set him on high, because he hath known my name.

 15He shall call upon me, and I will answer him: I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him, and honour him.

 16With long life will I satisfy him, and shew him my salvation. (Psalm 91, King James Version)

When I read those verses I am reminded of the love and care of a GOD who has bound my wounds and healed my pain.

How far down the road am I from that beautiful field? Well my life is not a bed of roses but no ones is. We live in a fallen challenging world. Yet I have chosen to know my LORD intimately and be satisfied with him completely. I am overwhelmed with His love.
I desire to remarry one day to a man who will walk that field with me without a weapon but so far that hasn’t happened. I am not fretful or scared it won’t. I know GOD’s heart for me. I have learned to be content and wait until GOD decides. He’s walking that field with me right now and that’s the best part. Although the song above still brings tears and I know another trial can come into my life any time of that magnitude. The thing I know now that I didn’t know then was the character of my GOD. I knew tons about GOD and loved deeply then. Yet when my storm hit and I was alone naked before a just holy GOD who saw me and my situation, it was then I realized who He truly was.

For me it was the WORD of GOD that changed everything. I began searching for answers and found them in the Truth that set me free. I was freed from the bondage of my past, the burden of my sin and the sorrow of my heart.

Now that brings me to one point. The same GOD who freed me will free the person who shot me the same way. It’s the same grace, same faith, same truth, same salvation, same word and same forgiveness. That might not sound fair to folks wanting revenge or being bitter. Think about it though.

GOD is so fair and holy he will restore the one who brought me pain the same way he will restore me! Doesn’t that reveal a character that is immutable, righteous, holy, just, and perfect. Doesn’t that show his great love for you! Wow! I can still hear the cry of my heart from those days. Lord, only you can take me from disgrace to grace to glory. Please step in here Father this is too big for me.

I remember going to the altar during the school day when I had a moment and crying out to GOD not knowing where I would be in the future. There’s no darkness to our GOD. My darkest moment was light to him according to Psalms 139:12.

Today yes I am thankful. I have the deepest well in my Father’s love that springs up and splashes anyone who gets in my path. I am so blessed, so thankful, so much more a woman because of HIM. Forget me and see my Saviour that hides me under his precious wings. No storm can harm me there. I am in some storms now and some temporal uncertainty. Where will I live, where will I work, will I love again and how do I stay a light waiting. We all face that kind of stuff. I might not know all of those answers but I cling to the One who does.

I have forgiven, I am forgiven and life moves on.

Wail On, Pit Dwellers

(Please note, I totally believe GOD wants to hear from us. I have been a pit dweller at times in my life this is written for a reminder to myself as well )

Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa! No one just wakes up with an emotionally burned out crippled and  crumbled  life. It takes time to get to any destination.  You might retort to me look at  Job and point a finger and say ah ha .. you have no clue what you are talking about.  Yes, Job is a person in the Bible who suffered greatly and we point to him often when we are in storms to try to get the courage to gut it out. I think we do ourselves a disservice doing that for several reasons because when we look at Job, we see the end of the story where GOD restored him. That keeps the focus on what we can get out of our brokeness rather than what it does to us in molding our character. We also need to look at Job’s life fully, not just that he suffered.  I am not talking about a person who is being tested in the way Job was. I am talking about when our circumstances are orchestrated by our own bad choices. Choices that have consequences that can not be restored. Don’t misunderstand me here, I am not saying God doesn’t restore. He promises to restore what the locust have eaten. I am saying the suffereing and  restoration Job had was not the kind I am speaking about. There is much to learn there but I am talking about when sin damages us.

  Our lives do not crumble overnight.  I woke up at 3:00 am with this thot in my head and decided it will be today’s blog. Where I am at today came through many tough water that were deep and challenging.   So this blog seems to be more or less dedicated to trading your sorrow for joy of the LORD.  My intent and purpose is to give folks a glimpse of what  I found elusive in many of my storms. Not that I can change anyone but that  the things that changed me were the WORD of GOD and soldiers in the body of Christ who shed their light at a time when darkness surrounded my soul as wave after wave of my journey collided with my faith. I just want to shed what light I have been given. 

 My life could have been much different if I had not have taken the trip I did to get where I am now. What if each moment in our lives we could have an instant replay. We surely wouldn’t get to the place where we are sitting broken and burned out if we could just replay those things that didn’t go as we hoped. Of course we  really can’t do that and if we could it would create disaster in our lives. By sheer human nature we would abuse such a gift. It’s a kind of winning the lottery pipe dream lets get back to reality.

One of the most sheep like qualities of Christians is our ability to depend on ourselves to be our own shepherd. We acknowledge GOD, even have a wealth of knowledge about Him but lack the ability on our own to stay out of the ditch.  In storms knowledge of GOD is useless without intimacy with Him. It’s like being all dressed up and no place to go. I lived that for many years. My knowledge was performance and fear based. The times I have been in the ditch were usually when I was steering the vehicle. We can’t just ask GOD to come along in our lives as we take on burdens He never intended we carry or as we try to orchstrate our way out of the storm or into a better place, or deny it’s complete existence. We know GOD, what His WORD teaches but we filter it by our lives and the parts we line up with we feel good about. The parts we don’t we dismiss or deny. It should be the other way around .

I know when I was deeply stuck in the mire, no one could talk to me. I was insistent that life  was going to work the way I had prayed.  Basically I am glad it didn’t in some cases. I was praying for my way and not God’s way.

The mire is so ugly.  If you have ever tried to walk in deep goopy mud you know what it’s like to try to pull one leg out, take a step, then pull the other leg out. It doesn’t take long before you tire completely. Spiritually, we create mire pits when we stop believing what God has said is true. When we do not watch His character to always keep His WORD and work in a way that is for our good.

We create a problem or make a huge mistake and the first thing that happens if we are not intimately walking is that our natural selves take over and rationalize how things can not work instead of seeing the beautiful plan God has to restore and renew our faith by transforming our mind.  We become a dead man walking so to speak. You will stink if you play with dead things but every believer has the Holy Spirit who is always ready and willing to walk you through the situation.  Psalms 40:1-3

 
1 I waited patiently for the LORD; and he inclined unto me, and heard my cry.

2 He brought me up also out of an horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my goings.

3 And he hath put a new song in my mouth, even praise unto our God: many shall see it, and fear, and shall trust in the LORD.

I love this passage!!! Really let it sink into your heart that sitting on your spiritual hiney is not only keeping you stuck in mire, it’s also keeping people from seeing GOD at work and fearing and trusting Him. It’s not all about us.  LOOK! and see that HE takes you out of the pit and He establishes our steps. Whew the pressure is off of us and on to Him. We just have to just follow the Shepherd. 

 Now don’t get the idea you will just sit there and wait for God to show up. NO! You wait paitiently but wail on! Wait on it to be God that answers but cry out to Him. He will incline and lift you up and put you on a rock, a solid foundation. If you know anything at all about walking in mire it is this, you are on shaky ground getting dirty and sucked in feet first. Your life is not too burned, it’s not over, it’s not done if you call upon your Father to lift you out. Dear ones I need to see that in you and you need to see that in me. Let’s let GOD hear us and get us out of the pit that keeps us hidden from the lost and dying world.