Wednesday, September 18, 2013

GI Joe, weapons of mass destruction & the Bible?

     Okay so I'm now teaching the young adults class for Sunday school. Quit laughing. Hey, this was Gods doing so hush! He has a plan. He's not omniscient for nothing. My lesson this week is one that I had to stop and shake my head over. The lesson title "The Pressure of Words", lesson point "Fuel your words with wisdom and gentleness" my summary "Words are powerful, they build and destroy. Your words should glorify God, not destroy as satan."

 I know,

I hear ya,

Yes I'm teaching this!
   
    Think about it though. Who better to tell you how to protect your house from burglars than an expert ex-burglar. The man who taught us self-defense went to criminals to find out what they looked for in a target to know what to guard against. As I link myself with criminals to qualify myself for this lesson, . . . who better to teach on the power of the tongue then one who has abused that power.

     So the lesson is all of James 3. My study starts off with the question: "When does your mouth get you into trouble?" They're joking right? Um every time I open it! OK truth is not so much anymore but there was a time that that would have been not only the correct answer but the only answer. It ends with "Your tongue determines the direction of your life and the quality of your relationships." In the middle all of it I have this. Some of us were born to wield swords/words some of us not so much. I'm a talker, plain and simple. I do think this is how God created me HOWEVER he did not create me to wield my sword/words recklessly. I have an awesome weapon. I have skill in using it. With all great weapons comes great responsibilities. I have the choice to make, to use my weapon for good or evil, I can't use it for both. I can't praise God with my lips and then curse man with those same lips. I did, I do, I realize it, I work daily at changing that. I'm human, sinful, bent in this direction. Until Christ. Not just until finding Christ but until FOLLOWING Christ. So yes sometimes I'm a little careless with my sword/words and I nick those that are within reach but knowing is half the battle (yes I did just drop a GI Joe in there).

Knowing Christ.

Knowing my strength.

Knowing my weakness.

Knowing He gave me (and you) the owners manual on how to use our sword/words.

**Just a little something. Notice that the only difference between sword and words is where the s is?? Maybe that's where the S as in Son is? Just a thought.
    

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

When did we exchange Christ the King for Burger King?

When did we exchange our relationship with our Heavenly King for a Burger King relationship? As we began our summer bible study in youth tonight the very first thing out of the gate was Matthew 4:18-22. Jesus commanded Peter, Andrew, James & John to follow him. He didn't ask "Hey if you want, if it sounds like an ok thing to do, if you have nothing better going on, why don't you come with me. He commanded. "Follow me" "I will make you fishers of men". Now they had the choice to go or not but Jesus did not set out to persuade them or give them some options. He didn't say after you finish up fishing and drop off your catch, tell the folks good bye, you should join me. I'm going to walk around to a bunch of towns where some will think I'm crazy, others will hate me and want me dead (you too by the way) but it's all cool cause some will REALLY like us, follow us around and we can heal a few people here and there! So what do you think? Wanna hang with me?

NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO!

Christianity is NOT Burger King!
 You Can Not Have It Your Way!

Matt. 7:21-23 ESV
"Not everyone who says to me, "Lord, Lord," will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.On that day many will say to me, "Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?"And then will I declare to them, "I never knew you;depart from me, you workers of lawlessness."

I really like the Message version
21-23 “Knowing the correct password—saying ‘Master, Master,’ for instance—isn’t going to get you anywhere with me. What is required is serious obedience—doing what my Father wills. I can see it now—at the Final Judgment thousands strutting up to me and saying, ‘Master, we preached the Message, we bashed the demons, our God-sponsored projects had everyone talking.’ And do you know what I am going to say? ‘You missed the boat. All you did was use me to make yourselves important. You don’t impress me one bit. You’re out of here.

There will be a lot of BK Crown wearing Christians standing before the Only KING going
 "Say Whaaa?"

It really is very simple. A.B.C easy. "Follow Me"  It's his first command. A command requires obedience. A command is a law. A Christian will follow the law. "Follow Me" Those that don't well they might need to double check their membership card. Make sure it was stamped by the Heavenly King and not the burger king.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Fearful Mothers Create Fearful Children

     I had a great time this past weekend at an Extraordinary Women Conference! There were many great speakers who made many GREAT points leaving me with MANY thoughts. But one comment stuck with me but not in the way she probably intended. Her comment was Fearful mothers create fearful children. I couldn't help but think about this past weeks FCATS and some kids were really fretting about them because their moms were. Me, I wasn't nor have ever acted worried about my kids taking them. I've prayed they did well but before them nothing but full confidence. Because of this they have NEVER worried about them either. I know some parents who freak out about these things and their children are nervous wrecks the entire time.

     So yes "Fearful Mothers create Fearful Children" which in turn leads me to believe
 courageous mothers create courageous children, faithful mothers / faithful children,
truthful mothers / truthful children, church attending mothers/church attending children, bible reading mothers/bible reading children, Christ following mothers / Christ following children.

     BUT what do deceitful mothers create? How about lost mothers? Unrepentant mothers? Hateful mothers? Yelling mothers? Rude mothers? Abusive mothers?

     This is what had me thinking what kind of mother am I? What kind of children do I want to raise?  As I watch my oldest children grow and interact with the youngest (she's 6 & 9 yrs younger then them) I'm beginning to see what kind of mother I have been and what kind of children I've raised thus far. Me, I have a little work to do. I need to work on being more like my Heavenly Father so maybe I can do my part in helping my children become more Christ like.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

The Cross

Have you ever really thought about the cross?
Have you thought about what a very crude, simplistic creation it was.  Imagine the cross that was hew for Jesus and the thieves beside him. It would have been cut by hand.  No sawmill here.  Rough, jagged surface.  I really doubt anyone sanded it smooth or even knocked off the jagged pieces.  Full of large splinters. I don't even like to carry firewood without gloves.  A torture device all on it's own. Then you add the nails, the standing of it, the taunting, humiliation, agony.
 Yes I believe the cross has to be one of the ugliest things I know of.

Yet we glorify it today.

We design it with scrolls, swirls and flowers. We add gold, silver and jewels to it.

We have turned a vial torture device into artwork that we display on our walls.

Why?

Because my God is a redeemer.

He creates beauty from ashes.

He takes the vilest offenders and turns them into His most devoted defenders. (just look at Paul)

Now the cross is,. . .

Hope

Reconciliation

Life

Salvation

Sacrifice

Triumph

Glory

But more then all its LOVE.

John 3:16
For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

Only God can take something so devastatingly ugly and make it truly beautiful.

What an amazing Love. What an amazing God.

 

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Breaking heart's & Breaking free

 
              I asked God to break my heart for what breaks His and this is what He has been laying on my heart lately. Human trafficking. This is the slightly PC term for it but the stripped down truth is it's women stolen, sold, bought, degraded, drugged, used till they are lucky enough to die, granting them temporary freedom from this life only to be chained to an eternal life in a worse hell.
     We like to think as a country we abolished slavery in the 1860's but we never did. Slavery has been apart of this world since the fall of Adam and Eve. It started with them falling into slavery with sin and continues today with girls sold into slavery of sin. Through out history there have been slaves, Israelites, Hebrews, Irish, the poor, Africans, and now, always, since the beginning, women, girls, sisters, daughters. We don't talk about it. It's not proper dinner conversation. It's ugly, scary, disgusting, unheard of. Out of sight out of mind. Until it's your 13 year old daughter that has been stolen, sold, used, broken. We don't think it happens here. Not in this great and mighty nation we live in. How does it happen anywhere? Our world is so much better then it's ever been. It happens, here, there, everywhere.
     I'm a realist. I don't think I or we can abolish slavery before Jesus returns. I don't think it will be abolished until God sets up His kingdom here after the tribulation. BUT I do think that if I can educate one person, break one more heart for what breaks Gods, save ONE girl in the name of JESUS, then I have abolished slavery in ONE life. When I look at my daughters, when I pray for their future, I pray for innocence, walks, husbands, marriages. I pray they enjoy these things. Now I pray for the daughters that have lost these things, I pray for renewing, rebirthing in the cleansing power of shed blood.

A friends niece runs this website that is committed to making people aware of human trafficking. http://www.uniquelyakv.com/index.html


A Holy Experience introduced me to this website that makes and sells items saving one soul at a time by offering jobs to those they can save.
http://freesetglobal.com/

     This Christmas while your trying to find that perfect gift and spend your money wisely how about one of these great gifts for your person and at the same time give a daughter freedom for hell in this lifetime and eternal life through Jesus. Is He not the reason for the season.

Friday, November 30, 2012

Christmas With No Santa?

     My kids were watching a show on t.v. the other night and everybody was freaking out because Santa had disappeared.

     Can you please tell me when did Santa replace Jesus?????????????????????????

Many of you are thinking "There is nothing wrong with Santa." "My children believed in Santa and they are just fine." Your right, in general there is nothing wrong with Santa, and my oldest two believed in Santa also till they were in about 3rd grade (the youngest is only 3 she doesn't count!). My dilemma is Why? Why do we want to add anyone or anything to this time of year when as a Christian the entire reason I celebrate this season to begin with is giving thanks for God's blessings (Thanksgiving) and to give thanks for His ultimate blessing, the birth of His Son Jesus Christ. We complain about the "commercialism" of Christmas but aren't I just as guilty by letting anything into my heart and home besides Jesus?

     I get that Santa has roots in Christmas, good roots, giving roots but he is not the ultimate gift giver. God is. So why would we want to let him share God's glory? Isn't that what we're doing? If we celebrate Santa along side the baby Jesus aren't we letting the jolly ole fat man share in the glory of our Lord and Father, our Jehovah-Jireh, God our provider? He is the root of Christmas. He is the giver of Christ. He is the giver of our salvation. He is the giver of our lives, our breath, the blood that flows in our veins. He is the giver of His Son. He is the giver of His Son's death and the soul cleansing blood that flowed from His veins.

     Instead of "Christmas without Santa?" shouldn't we be asking "Is there a Christmas without God and His Son Jesus?"
 
    Don't worry I've not fallen off the deep end. My children will be getting Christmas presents but not from Santa. Partly because they no longer believe in him and partly because we fully believe in Him. .


Tuesday, November 27, 2012

DisneyWorld

I feel like a five year old.

     Let me just say that taking a "Spiritual Journey" is like taking a trip to Disney World. At first your all like "Woo Hoo lets go!! This is going to be great!" and then your all "Are we there yet? How much longer till we get there?"!!!  (squirrel) When our preacher went to Israel his kids said it was like his Disney World!
     But seriously I'm striving for that relationship with God, ya know the kind that you see people like Ann Voskamp or Lisa Terkeurst have. These are women that you know suffer the same problems as the rest of us but handle them in a way that only comes from having more than a personal relationship with Christ. From having that no questions asked, I'd do anything for you, till death do us part, BF F's forever and ever kind of relationship. I want to say "Man this is hard work." but the truth is I know it's the easiest thing in the world to accomplish. It's simple really.
 Pray.

 Read my bible.

Study His word.

 Not hard at all. Not like oh I don't know trying to lose way too much weight after having my 3rd child and letting myself go just a little (lot).
    
     Like everything these days I want instant gratification. There's no instant gratification with relationships. They take work, effort, time, time, time. Here's that whole "Are we there yet!! How much longer!!" part.
     So I feel like a five year old, bouncing in my seat, asking if we're there yet, waiting excitedly for the grand adventure to begin.

The best part about being an adult during this is that, I know that getting there is just as great as being there.

It's called a journey.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

The First Leg of the Journey

     Well last Monday we were packing our bags and setting out on the road to Calvary. In the spirit of being transparent with you, honest to a fault and really holding myself accountable to God, before you I have to say my car stalled in the driveway.
I know, I know, sad isn't it.
I hear this happens to people.
I don't know but I can say I let it happen to me.
I started out with the best intentions (squirrel, that's like chasing a rabbit but different!)( does anyone ever start out with the worst intentions? ) and derailed. I was in my bible, praying and everything. Talked to my hubs about serving in different ways, made some plans, read a little, had some thoughts, bought some really good books to you know increase my spirituality, and . . .  then.
Not.    Much.   Of.    Anything.
I stalled.
That was pretty much it.
Went to church on Sunday and listened to a great a.m. message. I can't remember much of it but I do remember it was GOOD! But the Sunday night message, yeah well it was a little more then good, it was mine. These words were the jump start I needed to get me going. They were my private words from God, written just for me. I busted out my notepad and went to jotting down some notes. Two pages later, . . . Two pages later God had told me what he wanted me to do and how to do it.
It was painfully simple.
Yet so very hard, . . .  on my own.
These were the 8 points. I've adlibed here and there, and taken a creative liberty with it but it was my message from God so it's ok!

 1) God uses people who are already doing
     the right thing. 
     That's not just the obvious.
     It's studing, praying, reading,
     memorizing scriptures,
     pursing Him completely,
     being in church, being the salt and the light.
     ( I have some work to do here.)

2) God uses those who can be interupted.
    Are you willing to be flexible?
    Are you willing to drive a different direction?
    Be late?
    Miss something?
    (I'm good here! With B around I'm awesome
     at flexible! Well I am until #3)

3) God uses those who pay attention
     to the needs of others.
    (I'd like to think I'm good here,
     but the truth is somedays
     I have a hard time seeing past me and
    my little circle of mine.
    Sometimes I see a need and
    won't let myself be interupted to meet it.)

4) God uses people who inspire hope in others.
    ( I strive to one day be this person.
     Sometimes it's hard and I don't always want
     to remember who I once was and
     the path I once walked.
     But to deny this is to rob God of His glory.)

5) God uses those who use what they have.
     ( I am what I am and thats all I am!
      I admire many different people
       and at times have strived
       to immulate them, but I'm not.
       I'm not like them. I'm not them.
       I don't have their sweet spirit,
      soft voice, poetic words, or great hair!
       I'm loud, sarcastic, sometimes a little brash,
       I like to think I'm humerous,
      (atleast I find myself funny!)
       caring, not a push over,
       sometimes a little hard
       when I need to be, and
       I use great hair products
       so I atleast look like I have pretty good hair!
      That's me.
      That's what God created and
      what God wants to use.
      I need to remember this.

6) God uses people who know
    the source of their power. God
     ( I can do all things not through me
     but through GOD who strengthens me.
     I remember this in the big stuff,
     need to remember His power
     for the little stuff too.)

7) God uses those who will try their best
     and leave the rest up to God.
     (A little like 6. Guess I really needed
     to remember this one!)

8) God uses those who want Him
     to get all the glory.
    (I have never done one single thing
     worth mentioning.
     Now God, . . . well that's
     a whole nother  ball game.
     He has used me a time or
     two to do His work.
     I always feel blessed, overwhelmed,
     completely inept, and scared
     I'll screw it all up. But then I remember
     God doesn't make mistakes
     If I step back, let Him have control
     He can do miraculous things.)

I wish I could take credit for these awesome points but alas it's all God via a guest pastor visiting our church. Thanks Kevin for passing me a love note from God. Tell Him yes I'll pick up my cross and follow Him.






Monday, November 19, 2012

Taking a trip.

     I've decided to take a trip. 
It started out as a solo trip but I'm dragging the family along as well praying they'll enjoy it, and bring home so wonderful souvenirs too.
      Lately I've been feeling frustrated, antsy, on edge. Its been like I'm grasping something just out of  reach. Do you know that feeling? Your right there, stretching, reaching, you can almost touch it, fingertips are grazing the edge of it and, and, and, . . . nothing. Then last week I saw a pin on the all consuming, ever addicting Pinterest that showed a very sad picture, had a sadder description and at the bottom of it said something like, "God please break my heart for what breaks Yours". The pin was heartbreaking, it left me with feelings of guilt about my wastefulness, heartache for those who have less then nothing and exactly what you would expect one to feel.


       "God break my heart for what breaks Yours". This stuck with me. At first I thought about the typical things that anyone would think about after seeing that especially at this time of year. I felt a little glutinous, materialistic, selfish. I was ready to sell it all, set out and serve however God said to! Then real life intruded and I thought OK I cant sell out and do whatever but ,
what can I do?
What am I suppose to be doing?
What am I missing?
Stretching, reaching, still not grasping anything.
So very frustrated!!!
I just wanted to scream!
In my head I'm yelling at God, crying out to Him in frustration
"WHAT DO YOU WANT FROM ME!! JUST TELL ME!!"
 Let me suggest something to you, do not yell to or at God unless your ready for him to be blunt with you. If you have kids or deal with kids or deal with adults that act like kids then you know that moment when you move from holding on to nice and just tell them what's what with no sugar coating. It's not painful but it's not really pleasant either, but then the truth rarely is!

God broke my heart for what was breaking His.

Me.

I was breaking His heart.
My lack of everything was breaking His heart. God showed me that my feelings of frustration were His. I'm right there in my walk, so close but just, . . .  He's reaching, stretching, frustrated, so close, just grazing the edge of me with the tips of His fingers then, . . . nothing.
I have been leaving God with nothing.
So I'm taking a journey, a spiritual journey. I'm making an effort to lay on my face daily before God, to seek Him in each moment, to look for ALL opportunities to be His hands and feet, to teach my children to do the same. I'll seek His word, will, and heart daily. No longer lip service. We're going to experience true service and less serv"us".  I know I'm going to mess up. I know I'll miss step. I know more then once on this trip He will look at me and say "Angela!! Really???" and that's OK. I'm not Jesus so He knows I'm not perfect. I'm not suppose to be.
I've decided to take you on this trip with me. God showed me that when I share my mistakes and His victories that He is glorified. So pack a bag and enjoy the ride!

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Brylee's Offering


        Last week Brylee picked me some flowers. I later found out they're called Spider or Hurricane Lillie's. They grow wild (meaning I never planted them or tried to maintain them!) in my yard until Dean has a chance to mow the lawn and if the mower is down for repairs like it is now the Lillie's are in luck! Any who B picked a mess of them and with her sweet big sisters help she put them in 2 jars, one for mommy and one for Jesus. I have to tell you nothing makes a momma's heart swell with love, joy, peace, and gratitude than hearing your baby say something is for Jesus. Even 3yr old children know in the depths of their very being that you give the first fruits of your labor to God that created you. I wonder why it's so hard for us to remember this? I remember Jenna and Parker making pictures and such for God. I see now in their childlike innocence their worship was so much purer than mine has ever been. I'm humbled to be their mother.
      Well she did this on Tuesday and today (Saturday) I looked up at the mantel where they were and noticed my lillies were dying. They were starting to look pretty sad, but Jesus's lillies still looked beautiful! Amazing even though I don't know why I'm amazed! Even the lillies of the field know who their Creator is. They know we serve a MIGHTY GOD and they too want to glorify Him with their beauty.

Luke 12:27
27 Consider the lilies, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin,[a] yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.

Psalms 96:9
Worship the Lord in the splendor of holiness;[a]
tremble before him, all the earth!