The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon Me...
To comfort all who mourn, To console those who mourn in Zion,
To give them beauty for ashes, The oil of joy for mourning,
The garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness;
That they may be called trees of righteousness,
The planting of the LORD, that He may be glorified."

Isaiah 61:1,2c,3 (New King James Version)

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

....and the wisdom to know the difference.

That last line in the serenity prayer always gets me...wisdom comes through prayer. Yet I feel that SO often I think i can change everything. It's definitely not a new development. Since I was young, I thought I could endlessly change the world - that ANY goal I had in mind could be possible. While this helped with succeeding with a lot throughout my life, it has not helped with my ability to let God handle things and to wait for his promptings. The realization at 30 years old, that I cannot change everything is very scary. I was about to say humbling, but I'm not there yet. I say scary, because I STILL don't want to let go of the control even though all the evidence, circumstances, guidance, and promptings tell me it's time. I'm stubborn, but if you know me that isn't news, and that is something that YOU can't change. :D
I am certain that there is peace that comes from letting go of "what is" when you don't want it to be. I did that with the death of Makenna. Perhaps, even I see the permanence of death. Or do I? I can remember many ambulance rides looking at a patient and knowing in my guts they were dead, yet pumping away on his chest like I could change things. So, what truly makes me "let go?" Do I have to be in a place that nothing else makes sense? If I do, what does that say for my faith? Proverbs 2:5 says "Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding." What does it take for me to get there.
This has been my question as I endure a new season of my life. 
I think I've arrived at the answer, through conversation with my boyfriend. He continually reminds me to trust in God, that his plan is good. It frustrates me to be honest, that it seems to come so easily to him. Then it dawned on me. Relationships take time. I should know this being I rushed into my first marriage after a fair one month of dating, married with doubt on my heart, and endured a relationship that was not fullfilling. I don't say that to be harsh, I say that to be real. After leaving that, I was blessed with a relationship that has simmered, been under the fire, cooled off, and reignited. This relationship has been forged by heat and cold in every element I could possibly imagine and it is strong. So, why haven't I approached my relationship with God like that? Why have I expected it to materialize so quickly? Do I have some unrealistic expectation that he expects me just to accept things at face value, if he did why did he allow me the brain capacity to analyze information? The longer I endure hardships, the tougher things get, the more convinced I am that I am pursuing a relationship with God full of doubt and questions but exactly the way he knew it would go. 
God knows me. He knows my heart. He sees a fighter's spirit, a girl who craves life experience and he gives it to me. He knows that I'm not going to learn what his love is from a book...that I'm gonna learn what his love is from standing in the fire. That's me. It's not lack of desire to love him to trust him, it's lack of time forging a solid relationship with a love that will always surpass my understanding. I know I'm in that fire, I know all this stuff around me will end one day and then new stuff will take it's place. But I also know that God is in that fire with me. I also know that the fire subsides and I am blessed beyond measures with gifts, relationships, and life experiences that I don't deserve. I'm figuring this out one day at a time.  I don't always remember in the moment, when I'm trying to handle it myself, but one day I might. One day I might see the fire, pass the nozzle, and let go. One day...maybe.  So for now, I'll taked these experiences that the world throws at me. I'll try to rely on the armour God has given me and punk Satan whenever he tries to get a foothold in my life. I'll try to do that option first...before I think I can save the world myself. 
Life is Good, God is great.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Does God do good through all things?

A baby dying?
A bright young man getting killed in a car wreck?
Loss of job?
Custody battles?
Yes. Yes he does. He can, he does, and he will if he is asked.  I think the confusion comes when our idea of what is "good" doesn't line up in his plan. Sometimes, that just sucks. It's makes our day, week, month, or year "bad." Why? We only see the underside of this crazy loom he is weaving our story on - but he  sees the top. Ever looked at the bottom of a beautiful tapestry? The knots, bumps, abrupt changes in color, and the lose ends - then flipped it over only to see the beautiful artwork of the weaver? Finally, to understand the need for the knots, the reason the bright yellow went to a blue so quickly? I think that's life.
I'm not sitting here recollecting on progress...I'm sitting here preparing to get on my knees and pray for his strength, guidance, and grace. You see, today all I am seeing is the knots and the bumps. But today, I know that I have seen a glimpse of my tapestry and see that God is good and he will do good through my life's immediate struggles right now.  God will do what is best for your immediate struggles right now too. Hold on, for one more second, minute hour, day, - whatever you can. Then when that is over, do it again.

I don't typically bombard with bible verses, but I came across this today and thought I would share.

10 Scriptures About God’s Promises

2 Peter 1:4
And because of his glory and excellence, he has given us great and precious promises. These are the promises that enable you to share his divine nature and escape the world’s corruption caused by human desires.
Jeremiah 29:11
For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.
Matthew 11:28-29
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.
Isaiah 40:29-31
He gives power to the weak
and strength to the powerless.
Even youths will become weak and tired,
and young men will fall in exhaustion.
But those who trust in the Lord will find new strength.
They will soar high on wings like eagles.
They will run and not grow weary.
They will walk and not faint.
Philippians 4:19
And this same God who takes care of me will supply all your needs from his glorious riches, which have been given to us in Christ Jesus.
Romans 8:37-39
No, despite all these things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us.
And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Proverbs 1:33
But all who listen to me will live in peace,
untroubled by fear of harm.”
John 14:27
“I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid.
Romans 10:9
If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.
Romans 6:23
For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.

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Life is good. God is great.