Sunday, May 29, 2011

Making Candy

This weekend my husband went to Canada for a family event. I decided this afternoon to welcome him home I would make a flan for his return. I got my ingredients together and then starting dealing with a slew of questions from the kids. “What are you doing” “How does the sugar melt” “That doesn’t make sense mom”. Their questions were getting a tad annoying and I was trying to be a good mom.

I suddenly had a creativity memory moment where I remembered in one of my favorite book series’ ever The Little House on the Prairie when Laura and her sisters made candy from molasses and the snow. I figured I could melt some sugar throw some food coloring in, and let it cool in some ice water and it would give us a similar affect. I was trying to do something fun for the girls but the questions kept parading in my kitchen. “How is that going to work” “Candy is made out of sugar?” “Why did it turn green, wasn’t it blue before?” “Can I stir it?” “Mom, is it ready yet?” “Mom what are you going to do with the ice water?” “Mom! Mom! Mom!”

I am constantly amazed at God’s graciousness when it comes to us his children when we start acting like this to him. These times when my kids do this to me it’s when I almost want to say, “That’s it, I’m not going to do anything for you! Chill!”

I am so grateful that God doesn’t give up on us, but I’m sure there are moments when we sound the exact same way to him. “God have you noticed that bill that we got in the mail?” “God when is this thing going to happen?” “What are you doing God?” “God are you paying attention to me?” “God hey what’s taking you so long?” “God!”

When our “candy” was done, the kids marveled at my wisdom and my coolness. Truthfully, it all started on a whim, but to them it made me even cooler in their book. It made me reflect that God sees our end from our beginnings. While we might have our lists of questions, we have to trust Him. We have to trust that He knows what He’s doing because he might have a little more knowledge on the subjects than we do. We have to trust Him because He knows all, sees all, and if you’re His kiddo, He already has it figured out.

Think about it today. Is there anything in your life where you throwing tons of questions at him? Asking him questions is fine, but you have to trust Him that when you know His will on a matter, you know it will be well.

You have to trust Him!

Matthew 6:7-9 (The Message)
7-13"The world is full of so-called prayer warriors who are prayer-ignorant. They're full of formulas and programs and advice, peddling techniques for getting what you want from God. Don't fall for that nonsense. This is your Father you are dealing with, and he knows better than you what you need. With a God like this loving you, you can pray very simply. Like this:

Our Father in heaven,
Reveal who you are.
Set the world right;
Do what's best— as above, so below.
Keep us alive with three square meals.
Keep us forgiven with you and forgiving others.
Keep us safe from ourselves and the Devil.
You're in charge!
You can do anything you want!
You're ablaze in beauty!
Yes. Yes. Yes.

*Yes, this is a picture of our random experiment. The kids had fun.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Don't Be -a- Camping!

I usually pay little to no attention when someone tries to come out and say when they think the rapture, or the world’s end will be in the future. This last wave of end day proclaimers was led by a group of people following a man named Harold Camping. I did not listen to his thoughts as to why he thought May 21, 2011 would be the last day, nor did I care to. However there was a stream of media regarding his claims and I was asked by an old friend who I’ve been praying for years for my thoughts on it, and I thought I’d pass some thoughts of mine on for today’s blog. Indecently I have heard that Camping after saying the date would be some time in the 90’s, claiming May 21st, has now changed his story to October 21st.

Matthew 24:42 (NIV)
42 “Therefore keep watch, because you do not know on what day your Lord will come.

Luke 21:8 (NIV)
He replied: “Watch out that you are not deceived. For many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am he,’ and, ‘The time is near.’ Do not follow them.

However, the Bible does say that we as believers would know the ‘season’

Matthew 24 (KJV)
1And Jesus went out, and departed from the temple: and his disciples came to him for to shew him the buildings of the temple.
2And Jesus said unto them, See ye not all these things? verily I say unto you, There shall not be left here one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down.
3And as he sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?
4And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you.
5For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many.
6And ye shall hear of wars and rumors of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet.
7For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places.
8All these are the beginning of sorrows.
9Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name's sake.
10And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another.
11And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many.
12And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.
13But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.
14And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.
15When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:)
16Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountains:
17Let him which is on the housetop not come down to take any thing out of his house:
18Neither let him which is in the field return back to take his clothes.
19And woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck in those days!
20But pray ye that your flight be not in the winter, neither on the Sabbath day:
21For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be.
22And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect's sake those days shall be shortened.
23Then if any man shall say unto you, Lo, here is Christ, or there; believe it not.
24For there shall arise false Christ’s, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect.
25Behold, I have told you before.
26Wherefore if they shall say unto you, Behold, he is in the desert; go not forth: behold, he is in the secret chambers; believe it not.
27For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.
28For wheresoever the carcase is, there will the eagles be gathered together.
29Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken:
30And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.
31And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.
32Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh:
33So likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors.
34Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled.
35Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away.
36But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only.
37But as the days of Noah were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.
38For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered into the ark,
39And knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.
40Then shall two be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left.
41Two women shall be grinding at the mill; the one shall be taken, and the other left.
42Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come.
43But know this, that if the Goodman of the house had known in what watch the thief would come, he would have watched, and would not have suffered his house to be broken up.
44Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh.
45Who then is a faithful and wise servant, whom his lord hath made ruler over his household, to give them meat in due season?
46Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing.
47Verily I say unto you, That he shall make him ruler over all his goods.
48But and if that evil servant shall say in his heart, My lord delayeth his coming;
49And shall begin to smite his fellowservants, and to eat and drink with the drunken;
50The lord of that servant shall come in a day when he looketh not for him, and in an hour that he is not aware of,
51And shall cut him asunder, and appoint him his portion with the hypocrites: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.

So what does ‘know the season mean’? It means that just as a tree blooms you’ll know that spring is near. What people misunderstand is that their seeing signs of the spring blooming and then putting their own interpretation upon it. Are their signs that the end time is before us? Do I believe we are in the last season? Yes. I do. HOWEVER the word ‘season’ in the Bible is very subjective. We could have five years, fifty years, 5000 years, I don’t know. The word season is a blanket word to ‘we’re seeing the signs of the end’.

The bottom line is we don’t know. Now will we. If someone tries to tell you they know exact dates, don’t listen to them. It saddens me deeply that I heard stories about people committing suicide because they thought May 21st was the last day. People you don’t need to feel so hopeless. God’s desire is for you. If you turn you’re lives to Him, no matter when it happens He will take care of you.

I avoid getting into the pre-tribe, mid-trib, post trib, Armageddon, and rapture discussions. I have my own opinions. However I personally believe God is going to surprise even the most educated of Biblical scholars. Like Matthew 24:42 you have to be ready. Like the parable of the 10 virgins found in Matthew 25, you don’t know the hour in which the ‘bridegroom’ will come for his bride. You need to be prepared and keep ready. Pray for this Harold Camping guy, and all of his followers. Be open to minister to ones that come to you with questions. Be ready. Don’t be deceived. For there is a day that He is coming back, we just don’t know what day that’ll happen.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Running from the Red-Eyed Goose

My parents live very close to my aunt in a heavily wooded area. I grew up going over to my aunt’s house often. My dad purchased for my aunt several ducks and one goose many years ago.

While those animals have long since been gone, that goose I still remember. I was mortified of that thing. If you snuck up on it then maybe it would seem innocent it’s nice white feathers all it place, but then it would turn around and look like the goose version of the exorcist. I had red eyes and teeth. That thing hated me, and I can remember it chasing me around the yard as a little kid. I would sneak up to the porch hoping I could open and close the door before it figured out it was me.

That evil goose really scared me, but it’s so funny to think about this now because even when it caught me it just would peck at me. Maybe he’d nip at me and pinch me a little, but He really couldn’t do anything to me. But never the less it mortified me. I had all sorts of visions of this evil goose. To this day I have a thing with white geese, they still kind of freak me out.

We do the same things to many things in our own lives. We make a bigger deal out of it in our heads than it really is. We are deceived in thinking that this thing is going to somehow be able to hurt us when really it can’t do anything to us.

1 Peter 5:8 (NIV)
Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.

The Bible says that the devil is roaming around LIKE a lion. That doesn’t mean he is a lion. That means he’s deceiving you to believe that he is one. But wait a moment. We have authority over the devil. Jesus gave us that authority.

Luke 10:19 (NIV)
I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you.

When you’re allowing the enemy to puff himself up in your life and chase you all around you look just as silly as I did running from that goose. That goose couldn’t really do anything to me. I was three times its size. The same goes with you and the enemy. Remember who has the advantage here. If Jesus is for you than who can be against you? Quit letting the enemy chase you all over the place and be bold to get where you need to go. Because God has destiny and purpose for you to fulfill and you might need to stand up to a few “geese”. But greater is He that is in you than he that is in the world. (1John 4:4) God has awesome plans for your life, so get excited.

*This really isn’t the same goose, but I thought you’d appreciate the visual.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Supernatrual Stranger Blessing

I love sharing the story I get to share with you today. It’s got to be one of my favorite ones of God’s provision that’s happened to me over the years. I really felt that this was the day to share it in this blog format.

About 6 or 7 years ago Dan and were in a meeting where they were asking for a special offering. Now I am all for giving to the house of God. I know it takes money for ministry. I 150% believe in tithing. It works. But this offering was for above and beyond. It was a special missions offering. Dan and I had very little extra. I do want to preface this story with just make sure when you do these things you know its God and not your own flesh. Because I’ve seen people get a bit loopy in this area.

We were setting in church and Dan leaned into me and whispered, “We’re supposed to give X amount.” Now I couldn’t have heard him clearly. The amount he was telling me was way above and beyond what would be extra for us. It was the amount of our groceries for the next two weeks. While I try to be a mighty woman of faith surely He wasn’t serious.

“Are you sure?” I was secretly hoping I’d heard him wrong.

“Yes. Write the check.” Dan was so sure, and I could hear the questions in my mind. How was I supposed to get groceries? At the time our oldest was probably around 2 or 3.

“But Dan that’s our grocery money.” I tried to argue.

Dan nodded. “That is what God is saying!”

So with a deep sigh I wrote the check and we gave the money. The entire time in my head I kept thinking “How are we going to do this. Well we’ve got extra in the house. We’ll fine for awhile.”

For about a week and a half we were fine. We were finding the bottoms of our cupboards but we were okay. My big thing that I kept praying was “God if we have to go on what Jesse Duplantis calls a forced fast then fine, but take care of our daughter.”

With only a few days before payday I began asking Dan, “Are you sure he told you to do this? And why can’t we just charge groceries. We gave the offering.”

One thing I really respect about my husband is when he knows God spoke to him; he digs his heels in deep. “God told us to do it, and He’ll take care of us!” That was the end of the conversation in Dan’s mind.

A day or so later I opted instead of working out I was going to take the stroller and go to the park with our daughter. It was a beautiful day and there was no sense of staying inside. The park was going to be a long walk but I just felt an urge to do so. I honestly wish I could say I heard the voice of God to tell me to go, but I didn’t. I just started to walk.

When I was about half way there on a busy street in Orlando I heard a man behind me and the I could see him on a red bicycle ride up beside me. I started to get nervous.

“Here,” he says to me, “It’s for the baby.” He handed me money.

“What? I can’t take your money sir.” I tried to argue with him.

“No. It’s for the baby.” He handed me the money and rode off on his bike. He had no idea what was going on in our house. He didn’t give me a lot of money but it was enough to buy bread, milk, and eggs until Dan got paid a few days later. We were okay. One of these days I’ll get to heaven and get to really thank that man for his obedience to God.

Incidentally when all was said and done, Dan had gotten paid, and we had our pantries full again, I was rear ended by a car in traffic. We had an insurance settlement and we received a check for exactly 10X’s the amount we’d originally sowed. Dan had been right. God did take care of us. We didn’t go hungry. He is faithful.

So many times we hear stories like this and we want those kinds of stories but rarely do we take the steps of faith that God might require to go through them.

Psalm 37:25I have been young, and now am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging bread.

In these economic times where you might be believing God to put gas in your car and trusting that you’ll see his provision. Know that God knows where you are. God sees you. Trust in Him. If he told you to do and be in the place you are, if he has to send some guy on a red bicycle to help you out He will. He is faithful and His words do not come back void (Isaiah 55) Trust in Him!

Sunday, May 15, 2011

What Can You Do With Unmatched Curtains?

Dan and I lived in Pittsburgh, PA right after we were married. We rented the back end of this old house in an area of town that was not the greatest. Fortunately, though in order to get to our side of the house we had to go through a gated courtyard. That apartment had a lot of character and many windows. I am not a huge curtain person, but there were all these open windows and no blinds. We knew we had to do something. We also knew that we would only be living in that apartment for only a few months so were were not going to run out and spend a lot of money to deal with the situation. Therefore, we went to the fabric store and we bought yards of a light cotton fabric that we thumb tacked to the top of the window and I put a fake hem at the bottom using an iron and heat adhesive.

The theory behind my idea made sense. However in practice was a different story. I was so proud of myself. I had worked all day on my curtain masterpieces only to find out that the picture window ones were not even. One was about four inches shorter than the other. Dan and I laughed about the curtains. They were funny looking.

When we moved across the country, I found those curtains in a box and I decided it was time to repurpose them. We would just found out our oldest daughter was on the way. So while I am not much of a seamstress, I made a baby blanket, and three little baby jumpers out of them. My mom made jokes about me being Maria VonTrap, but they were kinda cute.

There are times in life when we can look at something we have done and only see a mess. However, God finds a way to make it worth something. God finds a way to make it usable.

Romans 8:28 (NIV)
And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.

Sometimes when you look at something when you have worked hard for and you just see a mess it is hard to think something good can ever come of it. Nevertheless, God has a way of bringing things around. God can turn your mess into a message. God can bring your struggle and turn it into ministry. But you have to remember it will not happen over night.

Psalm 46:10a
10 He says, “Be still, and know that I am God;

Get EXCITED! God has awesome plans for your life. Give him the mess, and what He will do!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

URGENT! Wal-Mart Ran Out Of Chicken!

A few years ago Dan, the girls, and I were running errands and we were on the other side of town. We were all getting tired. I’d hit rock bottom on the snacks for the kids, so we were all hungry. As we neared the end of the list of things we had to do, we found ourselves in a Wal-Mart. Out of frustration Dan and I agreed we’d buy a fried chicken meal from the deli and take it home. That way I didn’t have to cook, and everyone would be happy.

I approached the counter, and smiled at the girl. The see through case of fried chicken seemed tempting. There were ample amounts in the warmer. I waited my turn as my kids bickered as a result of their fatigue. I was trying to be as gracious as I could as I waited. She proceeded to be talking to someone in Spanish and wouldn’t make eye contact with me. As the seconds ticked off what seemed to be way to long I stood there. Finally in stilted English she asked me what we would like.

“We want the family chicken meal.” I responded. I thought I was being nice to her. I didn’t detect any amount of rudeness in my voice though in all fairness maybe it was there. We’d had a long day, and the girls were now borderline embarrassing with their whining.

“I’m sorry we’re out of chicken.” She responded to me with a straight face. I looked back at the case again. There were mounds of cooked chicken in the bins. Surely this woman was joking with me. Surely she would start laughing.

So, I repeated the request, “We’d like a family chicken dinner please.”

“Ma’am we’re out of chicken.” I think that was the moment the veneer I was keeping was starting to crack like ice on a windshield.

“What do you mean you’re out of chicken? What is that?” I pointed to the case.

“Sorry ma’am we’re out of chicken.” This was about the time Dan intervened. He must have noticed the desperation in my voice. The kids were getting to me, and surely this woman didn’t think I was stupid. This was Wal-Mart. They aren’t out of chicken. I’m staring at it. I am not one for making a scene but I was about to. I was about to yell at those people, ask for a manager, and cry. Didn’t they know I was tired and now for whatever reason this woman was deciding not to sell me chicken at Wal-Mart?

My husband is such a gracious man of God. He smiled at the woman. “Thank you.” He said and whisked me out the door. I wanted to take the woman down and my dear husband choose a much better option.

“Don’t worry about it Ann. There is a KFC on the way home. We’ll just stop there.” After I calmed down, Dan and I had a good laugh over this story. It’s still a joke to us to say that Wal-Mart is out of chicken. I’ve never understood what happened there.

So many times in life we choose to flesh out, or freak out, or look like a crazy person when things don’t go our way. To do that, really just isn’t worth it. We got our chicken, the kids calmed down, and all was well. It wasn’t worth me wanting to smack a woman at Wal-Mart to make a point.

Psalm 103:8 (NIV)
The LORD is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love.

Let God be our model in life. We may not always be perfect at it, but we have to strive to be slow to anger when things aren’t going our way. We have to strive to take deep breathes instead of smacking people. We have to remember that we are ambassadors for the kingdom of God. That doesn’t mean that we need to act like a doormat, but it does mean that we need to show love to His people wherever we go! There was an old song we used to sing at my church growing up. Here are the lyrics. May they make you think and reflect what you are showing the world.

They'll Know We Are Christians By Our Love
written by Peter Scholtes
additional words and music by Carolyn Arends
We are one in the Spirit, we are one in the Lord
We are one in the Spirit, we are one in the Lord

And we pray that all unity may one day be restored
And they'll know we are Christians by our love, by our love
They will know we are Christians by our love

We will work with each other, we will work side by side
We will work with each other, we will work side by side
And we'll guard each one's dignity and save each one's pride
And they'll know we are Christians by our love, by our love
They will know we are Christians by our love

By our love, by our love
And they'll know we are Christians by our love, by our love
They will know we are Christians by our love

We will walk with each other, we will walk hand in hand
We will walk with each other, we will walk hand in hand
And together we'll spread the news that God is in our land
And they'll know we are Christians by our love, by our love
They will know we are Christians by our love
By our love, by our love

And they'll know we are Christians by our love, by our love
They will know we are Christians by our love

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Standing For Life

Yesterday I joined one of many groups taking a stand against abortion on a yearly event that is now beginning to sweep our nation called Stand4Life. In had been a really long time since I had done something of this nature. While in High School I had joined up with a traveling ministry called Teens 4 Life. It was a training ground for me on this issue. But as I’d graduated and had my own children this was the first time I’d done something like this since.

Yesterday I stood in front of an abortion clinic in Orlando, FL prayed and wept with many others. Stand4Life is not a protest, but a declaration of love. It’s a stand to say “We love those babies that are being murdered. We love those people who are in a place thinking they have no other hope. Let us pray for you.“ There was a particular man I watched leave the clinic and wait for his wife. Later I learned, because I’d heard one of the workers say, that He and his wife had decided to go ahead and kill their baby because “they felt it wasn’t time in their lives to start having children.” In the midst of Lexus and BMW cars, I kept thinking of my oldest daughter. We found out she was going to be joining our lives in a time that was less than ideal in our minds. We’d been just newly married, and it was the furthest thing from our minds at the time. I stood there praying because now almost 10 years later I can’t imagine our life without her. It may not have been our timing for her on the earth, but it was certainly God’s time. The deception was all around thick like a blanket, and I couldn’t shake the feeling that the building I was praying in front of was a death factory. Why is it that publicly we think the Holocaust is horrible but we don’t wake up and realize there is a Holocaust going on in our nation of unborn babies? Why is it many people see one has horrendous but the other as acceptable?

Proverbs 31:8 (NLT)
8 Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves;
ensure justice for those being crushed.

People who blow up abortion clinics are not okay. They have issues. Sadly Christians get thrown into that pile. But that’s not true. Our motivation yesterday wasn’t hate, but love. Those babies who died in that clinic yesterday weren’t tissue. They weren’t cells but they were babies, and according to the Bible someone needs to speak because they don’t have the words to speak.

Jeremiah 1:5 (NKJV)
5 “ Before I formed you in the womb I knew you;
Before you were born I sanctified you;
I ordained you a prophet to the nations.”

God forms babies in the womb of their mothers. I know many would want to debate this as to when exactly that happens. I’m not writing this blog to have a pro life verses pro choice debate. I’m not trying to throw judgment on these people. Just trying to simply state a truth.

Yesterday I also had the opportunity to hear a couple of testimonies. One was from a woman who had an abortion earlier in her life. She’s now given her life to the Lord and knows she’s forgiven but is learning to forgive herself. Another woman who was ready to abort her child but she had a divine encounter and God essentially told her not to. Both women affected by abortion, and both women joined us yesterday to pray for this issue.

Make a choice to stand4life. Make a choice to stand for righteousness. Make a choice to vote for politicians that are making the same stands. Make a choice to help those you know who are in this situation, be available to help them. Make a choice to love people. Make a choice to pray. One day we will all be accountable before God for the choices we made on this earth. Let us make the choice to love.

*Attached is a picture taken yesterday.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

It Will All Come Together

Back in 2005, Dan and I got an idea for a drama about the Great Throne Judgment. As much as I write, it is a real rarity that he and I team up like that. However, I have noticed in any project that the creative juices start pumping and we work together there is just more of an anointing to it. While we wrote that particular drama the entire time we were brainstorming I kept thinking, “This is going to be a lot of work coming together. I don’t know how to do that? How will this work?” Dan and I kept brainstorming. What resulted was a decent script, and we both tried to put our doubts aside and go forward with the piece.

That skit sat on the back burner for a couple of years. It just wasn’t the right time to do it and we held onto it. A couple of years ago we finally were able to dust it off the shelf. When it was God’s time for it, it all worked out. The special effects came together. One person had a contact with someone who had this, and someone else could help us with this other issue. It just worked. It was a blessing to watch how God used it to change people’s lives.

In the few years since we did that skit, it’s been often that Dan and I have used that example for ourselves in our own walks of faith. It’s so common that God will put a vision in your heart and you think, “God this is such a big project. How will all of this come together? God are you serious?” It’s sad to say that so many people abandon what God is telling them in those moments because they can’t understand how it will work so they don’t go forward with it. In all the books, I’ve written I’ve had the same thought in my head, “How is this all going to come together? I can’t write this?” However, I have to push my doubts aside and can’t moving forward. God loves to give you vision bigger than you. When you step out in faith to trust Him, it makes him excited and giddy. When you believe Him further than you know your own ability goes and He‘s told you to do it, that’s when you know God is going to show up on the scene. Just as Pastor Greg always says, “Faith is the currency of heaven.”

The things of God won’t always make sense to your head, but you can’t stop there. If you know that you know God is calling, you to do something keep running with it! Later it’ll all make sense. It’s kind of like God calling the disciples to walk out on the water. Walking on water doesn’t make sense to your head, but it worked because Peter obeyed and was faithful. It only didn’t work when he started thinking about it too much.

This is one of the many favorite scriptures of mine.
Habakkuk 2:2[ Full of Self, but Soul-Empty ] And then God answered: "Write this. Write what you see. Write it out in big block letters so that it can be read on the run. This vision-message is a witness pointing to what's coming. It aches for the coming—it can hardly wait! And it doesn't lie. If it seems slow in coming, wait. It's on its way. It will come right on time.

Hear what God is saying for you to do, and run with it! Trust in Him even if it feels like it’s taking too long. Trust in Him! It’ll all work out, and it’ll all come together! Steps of faith aren’t always easy. But they are worth it because He is always faithful to do what He says He will.

*I included the link to the skit I mentioned. The video and editing quality isn’t the best, but it still makes me think every time I watch it.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Do You Have A Faulty Flashlight?

My girls have been bugging us for quite sometime about letting them camp out. My philosophy on camping is similar to my dad’s. “Camping is a Holiday Inn without room service.” Don’t get me wrong, if I had to backpack through the jungle because God told me to, I see that as different. It has a purpose; I don’t find camping a recreation that I enjoy. So we finally decided since we don’t own a tent, and we have a spare twin mattress in the shed that if the kids wanted to sleep outside we could make that bed up in the shed in the backyard. The kids were excited. Dan decided that if they were sleeping in the shed then we should put the air mattress on the patio just so we could hear them in case they needed something in the night.

The issue arose when we discovered our flashlight was faulty and our youngest felt that she needed to check on us every few minutes. Sometimes the flashlight would work and sometimes it wouldn’t. She kept getting scared. I kept telling her, “God hadn’t given her the spirit of fear but of power, love and a sound mind.” The kids would stumble around in the back yard not really sure where they were heading. We left a light on in the house so they were okay, but the issue with the flashlight kept arising.

In the end the kids had a night I believe they’ll remember. We all have more bug bites on us then we probably want to start counting, and I got the overwhelming feeling that the air mattress lost more air than it should. I felt as if I slept on the concrete and had been beaten up in the night.

I began to think about the flashlight and how it’s like our walk in life.

Psalm 119:105Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.

The word of God is our flashlight in life. We need to use the Bible to allow God to illuminate His plans, paths, and purposes for our life. So many times we find that our own flashlights are faulty. Maybe we don’t know the word in certain areas that we’re dealing with so it’s as if the light in our life is starting to flicker. I assure you that God’s light isn’t flickering, but you need to find out what the word of God is on the matter so that the word can shine brightly in your situation.

Pastor Greg always says that “Faith begins when the will of God is known.” If you don’t know what the will of God is on a situation, ie you can’t see where you’re going, then I’d say the best place to start looking to find it is in the word of God. Read your Bibles. Let it be the flashlight that will be like a lighthouse on the shore. Allow God to show clearly His plans for your life. God doesn’t want you stumbling around in the dark. But He has clear plans for your life. He has a clear pathway. Look to Him and He’ll shine His word so that you can find where you need to go. He loves you. He has good plans for your life.