Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Heaven's Currency

Listen, beloved of God, do you know that every decision you make has value?
Our decisions have either  Heavenly eternal value or earthly temporal value. Here's a few examples that the christian might give with a surface glimpse at this topic.
1. the good samaritan made an eternal decision with eternal value.
2. Daniel made an eternal decision to not bow down to Nebuchadnessar's idol.
3. lying for self gain would be a temporal decision with temporal value.
4. When knowing God's answer is no and still doing our will instead, would be a temporal decision with temporary value.
Even praying for our will and not surrendering to God's will would give us temporal value.
If I prayed for my will and ignored praying for God's will to be done in my desire, which is a shiny brand new house and God in His mercy and love for me grants that to me, I've been blessed with a temporal reward - temporal value. Congratulations Danae, you have a beautiful house.

What if when I prayed for my will instead of His will and received what I really wanted in my heart, what if I missed out on the big picture. God may be holding me out from the comfortable home I so desire in order to reveal Christ in me more and more through the trials of a tiny, creaky, dirty old house. My reward and eternal value would be so much greater, in Heaven I would be praising Him for not giving me what I thought I wanted...

We are either setting ourselves up for comfort in this temporary life on earth or setting ourselves up for crowns, jewels, authority, robes of righteousness etc.. in our eternal life.
Do you think maybe God gives us opportunity every new day to make decisions for setting ourselves up for glory with and in Christ ~ for eternity?
I think He makes it easier than that with even more reward than we can fathom.
Is it true that Christ lived for 33 years without sin?
YES.
Is it true that we were born with sin so even in our first few years of life we sinned without even trying hard?
YES.
Why do we think we can make the decisions then? If we have the Word, the one who knew no sin, the Son of God, God almighty living and breathing life in us every moment of our earthly existence than why am I even making decisions in my own strength?


I'll tell you the truth. The currency in Heaven is not our good decisions, or good works.
The only thing that gives us eternal reward is the works Christ does in our life.

Our opportunity then is to surrender to Christ's life in us and His authority in every decision we make!
Lord, I surrender to You this morning, not my will but Your will be done today and in every part of my day.
I had a dream not too long ago about Heaven.
I entered eternity with the Lord and I saw Him in a ceremony giving elaborate gifts, crowns and robes.
It was spoken to me in the spirit (without words) while I was there that those people were given the rewards not for their good efforts and good works but for the good works they allowed Christ to do through them. We actually do nothing and receive God's rewards. The less we do the more He blesses us. Our goodness has no value because we have no goodness. Christ is good and righteous and sinless. He does the good in us and we surrender to Him and His life in us.
Not my glory but Christ's glory in me. Not my abilities but Christ's abilities in me.
Not my decisions but Christ's decisions through me.
And our reward is given to us because of Him!

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Just Who is This Holy Spirit in Me?

Here is an outstanding truth I've recently learned through Mike Well's teaching.
It's deep and refreshing.
Jesus is the word and the Father is the source to the word.
The word and source are one.
The Holy Spirit is a result of the Source and Word making the trinity. The Holy Spirit is birthed from Source and Word. The intimacy between the Father (Source) and the Son (Expression of the Source) gives birth to an atmosphere.
The Holy Spirit is the best that can be produced from the intimacy of Father and Son.
This may sound odd but this reminds me of what is produced from the intimacy of husband and wife.
A child is the best that can be produced from the intimacy of the two.
That seed is planted in the woman to grow safely, then is birthed from the very body and lives and glorifies the parents love for each other and their child.
The Holy Spirit was created by the love of the Father and Son is planted in us and grows the revelation of Christ in our lives and truth is birthed from the Holy Spirit in us to live and glorify God's love for us and His Son.
That's just a thought I'm trying to get in writing. Forgive me I haven't worked out the presentation yet.
I'm just being raw and vulnerable with what I'm learning in Christ.


When people think of the term spirit they mostly think of angels or demons.
In the language of the bible spirits are also atmospheres.
"spirit of judgement, spirit of wisdom spirit of humility........"
Do you notice when you visit a house with a spirit of conflict you end up feeling the conflict yourself, you easily have a tendency towards conflict and it brings your countenance down?
When entering a house with the atmosphere of joy you yourself are joyful.
The Holy Spirit is not wandering through the laps of dimensions He is not sitting on His throne, rather, "the Spirit that encompasses the Father and Son is a Holy Spirit, an atmosphere whose presence and power is so great that for those in it's influence, being Holy makes sense and becomes possible." When the Holy Spirit comes, He brings contrast from the world to a Heavenly understanding. When the Holy spirit enters a person, that person's life is immediately contrasted with the atmosphere that flows from the intimacy of the Father and the Son.

I think of what David said "Take not thy Holy Spirit from me." Was he talking about the atmosphere of the Holy Spirit?
With the Holy Spirit within us we have the power and authority and tools to live as Christ.
For Christ's life to literally live through us. 
"I am the vine you are the branch" I can't live as a branch without the vine. My life is dead but Christ's life is alive, holy, righteous, unblemished...I rest in the vine and in His life in exchange for my death.

The Holy Spirit is a result of the Father and the Son's love for each other.
That love is indwelling in me.
Jesus said that the same Holy Spirit that walked with them would walk in them. 
AMAZING.
"The atmosphere created in the intimacy of God the best of His love, would now dwell in them."m.w.
"The word became flesh and dwelt among them." We know this to be Jesus.
Why is it a surprise to think an atmosphere could become a person called the comforter? The people that came to see the Word that was dressed in linen clothing did not come to see His clothing. They were consumed with the Word that became flesh.
This Holy Spirit, an atmosphere that brings the presence of god to men and gives men power, came clothed in tongues.
I don't worship the clothes, the proof of the Spirit cannot be condensed to miracles, gifts, or fruit all of which can be duplicated by the enemy.
The proof is that Jesus is lifted up.
The enemy cannot lift up the Truth, the Word, Jesus.
Men are drawn to Jesus. satan can never copy lifting up Jesus.
We are to be filled with the atmosphere of the intimacy of the Father and Son.
We are filled with the Holy Spirit.
 

Monday, March 29, 2010

My Will or Thy Will

I caught Oscar in the cleaning supply cabinet this morning having a good time experimenting with different cleaning products.
He was so excited about his new toys that he didn't want anything to do with my explanation that this particular cupboard was off limits.
After cleaning up I left him to a few toys in his room and peaked around the corner knowing he would soon return to the forbidden cupboard.
As you can imagine, within seconds he sat down in front of the cleaning supplies once again and began to pull everything out for investigation.
As I began to train and discipline Oscar in obeying he reacted with a piercing scream of defiance.
It occurred to me that Oscar was behaving in a way that shed light on my own behavior with the Lord.
As Oscar's mother I  am aware of the dangers of him playing with (and trying to put in his mouth) cleaning products. Unfortunately Oscar does not have the wisdom yet to comprehend the consequences of eating comet or spraying windex in his eye. I do, and so I protect him from his own desire. My desire is better for him than his desire is for himself. If he could understand me I would say, 'Oscar you think you want this but you don't, trust me if you knew that eating that bleach would hurt you, kill you or permanently deform your mind you would not want it.' He doesn't know this truth so he's going to have to trust and obey me.
Right now he doesn't just simply trust me, so I have to take measures to discipline him in love that he will obey and not eat comet and hurt himself. In his mind he just wants freedom to explore and play uninhibited. He thinks, "well, my will is to spray the windex bottle at my face that would be fun, mom's will is for me to have no fun." In fact my will for Oscar is for the most fun he can have, safety, love, a bright future with both eyes unharmed, and a most exciting life. He wouldn't get it if I tried to explain it, he is 19 months old. For now I guide him in this dangerous world in my knowledge and wisdom, I teach him and prepare a full future for him until he can make right decisions on his own.
It's beautiful to think about God's patience and guidance with us. Being the creator and our loving Father, He knows the dangers of our will. He knows our future and He is all wisdom and knowledge. He is omniscient, omnipresent... God is saying no to us when we want to eat comet and spray windex in our eyes not because He doesn't want us to have fun but because His will for us is better than our will for ourselves. I trust you Lord. I trust Your will over mine.
Jeremiah 29:11  For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.


I've prayed for things in the past that God never brought to us and I've been on my knees praying for things in my own understanding. Well, I recognize that I am not the one with the understanding. God is the one that knows all things. When I pray I ask God's will to be done, not mine but thine. 
What He wants for me is what I want anyway, but still I trust Him even though I cannot comprehend, I can rest assure His will is better for me than my will is for myself.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Do you Believe That God is Good?



(Haitians singing praises to God through the streets of Haiti a week after the earthquake)

I was praying and writing in my journal on 12/14/09, 18 days before the night Jake was killed.
It was a night that I sat alone at home praying and listening to the Lord.

Below is what I wrote in my journal in hearing from the Lord.

I heard God ask me this question tonight.
Is it true that I AM good?
I said, 'Yes Lord it IS true that You are good'.
Later that night He asked me again.
Is it true that I AM good?
I said 'Yes Lord, of course you know, that I know - You are good.
only a few minutes later I heard from the spirit again..."do you believe that I AM good?
In that moment the knowledge of things I try to keep out of my mind came to my memory.
The knowledge I've learned of little girls in India sold into prostitution.
I knew the Lord was asking me if I believed He was good even when I was aware of repulsive disgusting sin as what was brought to my memory.
'I do not get it Lord. I do not understand why you are waiting so long to rescue your children from this hell we live, with sin so grotesque it forces itself on innocent children!' Yes even still...in my lack of comprehension I believe that You ARE good'.

(I continued to write in my journal as I listened to the spirit..but looking back on this entry I think God was preparing me for Jake's death.
Jake was shot and killed and yet God is still good isn't He?
I trust You Lord Jesus.)

Journal entry continued:
Webster's dictionary: Truth is the true or actual state of a matter, actuality or actual existence;

truth is more powerful than a lie and deceit.
Truth is to be discovered. If some truth has not been discovered yet, that doesn't make lies true. A lie is still false even if the truth has not been found or revealed yet.

Is it true that God is good?

Psalm 107:1 "O give thanks unto the Lord, for he is good: for his mercy endureth forever."
Psalm 31:19 "O how great is thy goodness, which thou hast wrought for them that trust in thee before the sons of men!"
Psalm 145:9  "The Lord is good to all: and his tender mercies are over all his works"
Psalm 25:8     "Good and upright is the Lord: therefore will He teach sinners in the way."

Yes it is true even if I do not see the truth yet or the truth has not been revealed to me.
God is good and I can believe Him even if I don't understand or see it.

Radio waves have always been in the earths atmosphere.  Before they were discovered we could not see them and did not know they were there, yet that did not negate the truth. Not knowing that they existed  did not make the lie that they are not there, true.

They existed whether anyone believed it or not. Radio waves were a profitable thing for us to find.
Some do not believe that God exists, because they do not see.
I might believe that God is not good because I have seen up close and personal the affects of a sinful heart taking the life of my baby brother. I could not in my understanding see the goodness in his murder. Yet in God is all goodness.
We see the effects of radio waves and of wind and we believe yet we see the effects of God in creation and life and some still do not believe the truth.

I have faith or I believe that radio waves exist. now what?
Now we can move forward in that truth. More is to be revealed.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Incredible Insight

Wow, I had to post this comment from Dave.
He commented below the post: I'm Here to Loose



Dave W. said...


I totally agree that the longer we live, the more we become aware of truly how powerless we are.

There's a fairy tale solution that we want to believe about ourselves, that, eventually we get the power to solve all these problems. And we can feel good about our efforts and contribution to the sorrows of fellow man.

The problem is we see ourselves as part of the solution, instead of keeping our eyes on the only One who has the solution. Jesus is the solution whether we see it or not. He has the power to do all that we want him to do, even though we don't see results the way we want.

We will never be the solution.

However, I don't think we need to find that to be depressing, but a maturing and relieving thought. We can stop working and start resting in Him.

It's the strange mystery that at that point in our journey, when we remove ourselves from the equation, THEN Jesus begins working some incredible things in and through us! It's at a point where you no longer care that you're the hands He chose, that He starts to use yours.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

This is Not My Home

Satan does a very poor imitation of life. He tries to entice us with the counterfeit life.
I was walking to the park not long ago. As I crossed the street with an unthankful heart I began to complain to the Lord about our financial situation.
At that moment a shinny brand new land rover passed, and I coveted. This is a car I could really use. Don't we deserve it? We have been working so hard and with nothing to show for it.  I vented to the Lord.
Then I heard Him say "that is the best the world has to offer".
Well AMEN. It hit me like a semi-truck. That is the best the world has to offer!
And the best the world has to offer will not last in the first place not to mention it will be destroyed in the end. Why am I striving to accumulate the best the world has to offer?

The world offers disease, loneliness, slavery, poverty, lust, eyes that are never satisfied......
The Lord calls us child and offers citizenship of Heaven, crowns of glory, inheritance of His kingdom, co-rulers in eternity, robes of righteousness, love and acceptance.....
I'm an alien to life on earth for a short time, I will be a citizen in Heaven for eternity.

When I set a goal for our family to live as comfortably as possible and the realities of life on earth steal my joy and thwart my goals, I have to remember to turn my gaze upon Jesus. 
THIS IS NOT MY HOME.
As Dave and I are working towards being debt free, MBA/MASTERS, Harvard, owning our own business, working at Ouray and raising Oscar my plans and goals for us to FINALLY "reap what have sown" never seem to become reality. And on top of that the government doesn't follow my standards of comfort either.
My most recent concern is of loosing freedoms through our government.
My mind can take me to fantasies of a dark future.

This is where my mind goes:

'Does being an American mean socialism some day soon?'
'Will all the hard work we've put into our business, paying off debts and schooling mean nothing for us in the near future?'
'Will we be paying so many taxes we won't see the fruits of all our hard work?'

Life on earth certainly isn't getting more comfortable. It's starting to get scary not to mention painful and I personally have a fear of our freedom of religion soon being taken from us.
With prayer in schools already out of the picture and homosexuality being taught in a few trial schools I'm starting to really see the point Paul made when he said:
Philipians. 3:19-22 Their destiny is destruction, their god is their stomach, and their glory is in their shame. Their mind is on earthly things. 20But our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ, 21who, by the power that enables him to bring everything under his control, will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body.

"Their destiny is destruction, their god is their stomach, and their glory is in their shame. Their mind is on earthly things." This sounds like our government. I feel like we are gradually placing our freedom in their hands to make decisions for us. 

I'm thankful for the glimpse God gives us of our real future. The future for us where we hold citizenship.
Our home.
Not only do we have citizenship in a most beautiful place that God himself is preparing continuisly in all His creativity and glory but we will have new beautiful unbroken, undiseased unblemished and glorified bodies!
That is the place we call home.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

When God Whispers Your Name

God whispered my name this morning, the voice came from within.
He ushered me into His presence where I would recognize Him.
A fierce and powerful unsafe God who created glories unknown.
A gentle patient forgiving Abba who sits at the throne.
A word, and a 900,000 mile sun responds from His mouth.
Smaller than a mustard seed he formed me with his love.
Tucked me in my mother's whom to keep me safe and warm
He whispers His love in me since before I was born.



Life is not easy. Trials in finances, health and relationships never cease. I can get really worn out with the never ending cycle of trials. Then I watch a movie like PRECIOUS and I'm reminded that life is even harder than I know of and more painful than my own life scope. That is usually when I work myself up into a frenzied panic to save all abused and hurt children in the world.
God whispers in me. "I AM God."
Then the cycle of humility, truth and helplessness usually follow my 'I'm overwhelmed' prayer.
The humility is that I am not god and I cannot fix anybodies brokenness, pain, hurt....
The truth is God is I AM He has a will and a plan and loves these hurting people more than I can comprehend in my feeble understanding, He is working for the good in them, HE IS GOOD, the lies don't negate the truth......
and the helplessness actually has a happy ending if we can believe He is good, if we believe in Him, if we can only believe Him!
God is my safe tower and that is where I bring my helplessness.
He has given us a helper. He has stepped into me and helps me from within.
He does not give me good advice from His far away throne. He does not send me to a physician or a foster home. He draws me into Him and does the work for me, through me, in me.
He gets the glory, He does the work.
Thank you Lord for not being above us or around us or beside us. Thank you for being in us.
In the parts of us we don't even know. In the unseen corners of our minds and in the hearts no one else cares about. I do not have a helpful angel guiding me through life, we have not a genie, but God almighty, I AM.
John 14:16-17

Monday, March 22, 2010

Where Does My Help Come From?


Most people know that in a marriage serving, communication and "dieing to self" is key to keeping the love alive.
For Dave and I our fight for oneness, vulnerability, sacrifice and service is not easy yet it is the most rewarding in our journey on earth.
But why doesn't this help Dave and I in the face of a tragedy?
The past month in my grieving process I've been a little unbearable as a spouse to live with. I think any other relationship in my life would peak into my current grief and perceive that I'm coming along just fine with the loss of Jakey.
But with the love and security of a godly husband I've let my "surface" smile fade and allowed the true colors of mourning show their ugly head. I'm blessed to be able to do that. Dave has been supportive, patient and healing in the process yet it does not help and my grief still tries to threaten our marital peace.

It's hard in that being one with Dave I am feeling something he cannot fathom. I lost my little brother through an unfair crime, he has not, so there is a bit of a disconnect.

In this I can remember there is no disconnect with my Heavenly Father.
I turn my eyes to the Lord from Him comes my help, my support my fullness, the deep comfort that I need. I turn to Christ first then Dave. In this way I come to Dave already full. In this way I'm not looking to Dave for an unrealistic expectation. How can a man that cannot imagine the pain I'm feeling cover me with comfort?
God can. If I were to think Dave could fill me, I would be disappointed and angry with him when he fell short.
I've tried to give Dave the power to heal me with his love and support of me but it did not work and in the process I was disappointed and angry with the results.

I'm reminded of a verse:

Psalm 107:9
"For He satisfieth the longing soul, and filleth the hungry soul with goodness."
Pslam 121
"I lift my eyes up to the hills, from where comes my help? My help comes from the Lord who made heaven and earth...............He who keeps you will not slumber"

He doesn't sleep even when all the world is sleeping. When I'm up in the middle of the night tired of a world that is too much for me to bear, I can know that He is not sleeping, He is with me.

I lift my eyes up to the 14,000 foot mountains here in Denver. God who made them in all His power and majesty sits with me and covers me in His goodness. As I turn to God, the only one who can fill me, heal me, satisfy me, I notice my relationship with Dave is deepened because I am not looking to him to fulfill a broken heart. God made my heart He lives in my heart, He heals my heart. Dave and I are brought closer to each other as we draw near to Christ.


I really like this diagram of a husband and wife drawing near to God and therefore drawing near to each other closer and closer as they walk to God.

Friday, March 19, 2010

HEY! TEE


Here is a way to help out the beautiful people who survived the Haiti earthquake and look cool doing it!
Jeremy Picker has launched a campaign to help raise money for the earthquake survivors.
Jeremy's heart was captured by the colorful culture and people in the many visits he took to Haiti. He has a personal relationship with a few orphanages that have been severely affected by the recent disaster.
When you donate to the HEY TEE campaign you receive a very cool top of the line tee shirt at left, and you will contribute supplies through the Hands and Feet project for the town of Jacmel where the orphanages are located near Port Au Prince. Everyone wants to help Haiti, here is an effective and fun way to do it. Read more about the HEY TEE campaign project and track where your donations are going: www.heytee.com

Thursday, March 18, 2010

I'm Here to Loose


Matthew 7:13-14
"Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. 14But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it."


Do you ever notice how the longer you live on earth the more aware you are of the pain? 
It's like, I'm thankful Lord for the beautiful earth you made but how can I enjoy it when sin smothers it in darkness. I know our journey on earth is to loose ourselves our "righteousness, our glory, our kingdom our pride our significance" because we really have none of this without Christ's life in us, but the journey to find this out isn't a pleasant one.
When I ask for Christ to be revealed in my life more and more, I've noticed the path get smaller and smaller forcing me to recognize I don't have the power to help myself, or the power or talent or anything to even contribute. It's all Christ's strength, significance, authority, life, in me that gets us home. There is no life without death first. The life we really want calls for us to loose our life first. Just as a seed has to die in order to release life giving enzymes to create the tree inside it, I too have to die to myself, to my own understanding and desires and will to release Jesus in me to give me life to bear fruit and live fully in Him.

When I look back on my journey with God I see myself standing at the "narrow gate" the moment I surrendered my life to Christ. It is here that I left my will, my life, my desires for His because those 
things will not fit on this path. As time passes my desire is to continue to follow so I  shed the things I thought were important for survival. Nothing fits on the path but Jesus and me. 

I continually shed the things of this world, and surrender my will for His.
Now that  I have a free hand Jesus grasps it and continues to lead me through. 
The path that I call life on earth starts to get dark and I'm thankful He has my hand.   
There comes a time on this journey when I'm faced with trouble in marriage or financial burdens or illness. It is here that I no longer have anything physical to shed. I'm now crouching my way along, 
there is nothing left to drop except what I'm carrying inside. I'm on my knees, I have no strength of my own.
It is at this point that I die to myself and shed my pride. Lord I cannot go on with the weight in my soul of pride and selfishness, I cannot survive without your life in me, your strength in my marriage, your 
wisdom and grace in my financial burdens and your healing in my illness. I surrender my death, my 
sinful dieing self, for your life in me. 
There is a lot of baggage of sin in my flesh so this journey takes as long as it takes to dump it and
realize it's all about His life, His will, His love and goodness not mine. I have nothing.
I notice the path seems to get tighter and narrower the longer I'm on it and yet the more I follow Jesus the more the light shinning from Jesus glory reflects off me.
I'm pressed in with nowhere to look but at Christ and I see my future in Him.
I have no glory, I have no wealth, I have no talent, I have no purpose, I have no plan, I have no hope, I have no sin....He took all of it and replaced it with Him.
In Him I am royalty, I am an heir and co-ruler with Christ. I am powerful with the power of all mighty 
God, I am cherished and loved, I am all of these things because of Christ's life in me the hope of glory!

I'm looking forward to being fully surrendered, knowing I have nothing to offer so we can finish the 
long narrow gate called life on earth and enter our final destination! His kingdom where He has called me daughter.
"God works in us, Christ moved into us and is our life, and the Holy Spirit makes the things of God and Jesus not only reasonable but also doable in His power." ~ mike wells

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

When My Dreams Don't Come True Part2


This post will make more sense if you have read yesterday's first.

I read Matthew chapter 13 with a jolt of new understanding.
God spoke to my heart in a way I could not have received if the hopes and dreams of my wishful
younger self had come true only a few years ago.
You would have to read the whole chapter yourself to grasp the wisdom in Jesus parable but I will quote the place in which God opened my understanding.

"yet hath he no root in himself, but endures for a while: for when tribulation or persecution arise because of the word, by and by he is offended. He also that received seed among the thorns is he that hears the word; and the care of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, choke the word, and he becomes unfruitful. But he that received seed into the good ground is he that hears the word, and understands it; which also bears fruit, and brings forth, some an hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty."


When my heart was consumed with the idea of singing I was like the seed cast into the thorns. The thorns were the singing (in my heart and life this is the case. I'm not saying this is the case for everyone).


God toiled my ground purging me of the thorns to make my ground good. To give me good soil.
The purging was painful but necessary for the seed of truth, the word, to live and grow in me and produce fruit.


Before the purging I heard the word but I would have been unfruitful if God had not toiled my ground and purged the thorns from me. I would have been swayed by the worries of this world and the deceitfulness of wealth making me unfruitful AND unprepared to handle the recent tragedy of loosing Jake.
I would have endured for a while but I would have been offended and untrusting towards God had He allowed the thorns to stay in my soil and choke the word growing in me.


What I've learned from this passage is that unless God had purged the singing in my life there would be no fruit in me. I may have wanted to sing with unabandoned worship and ease but God had a better plan for me. He saw that singing was a ground full of thorns in my heart so he replaced the thorns with good soil and fruit a "hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty".
I rest in God's perfect plan not mine.
I'll take an out of tune voice for good soil any day. 
My prayer has been for an understanding on how to worship God if it's not going to be through my voice. That journey is still unfolding.
I'm looking forward to the mystery God is revealing in me.
He's always surprising me. Who knows what gifts will be unveiled with a heart that trusts him.

Monday, March 15, 2010

When My Dreams Don't Come True Part1

I read Matthew chapter 13 yesterday with a jolt of new understanding.
God spoke to my heart in a way I could not have received if the hopes and dreams of my wishful
younger self had come true only a few years ago.
You would have to read the whole chapter yourself to grasp the wisdom in Jesus parable but I will quote the place in which God opened my understanding.

All my life growing up I had an affection to sing.  My parents bought me endless lessons for years to cultivate the passion in me. Talk about motivated! I devoted almost everyday to practicing and tuning my vocal chords. I thought that since a few times I sounded decent God would surely bless my efforts. This must have been my calling for life! I was convinced of my future. My appearance on stage for a few "important" events only confirmed my suspicions. I was training to be famous!
Of course it wasn't going to be easy I thought, I'll get rejected a thousand times and not give up'.

So I pushed on and 'scored' a few victories along the way. But somehow I knew it was all in my effort and that God was not doing the work in me and not receiving the glory.
I found myself arguing with God saying "Lord, bless my voice, this is our dream for me."
I hate writing the ugly truth but that is truly where I was. I loved the Lord AND I had a plan for my life.
Surely my plan would eventually be God's plan if it wasn't already.

As I sang in churches wherever I lived and trained for the national anthem in stadiums God started to slowly strip away my identity. He didn't do it all at once yet the painful stripping began.

As I look back I can identify that the Lord in His love for me allowed me to try on my own and in my own strength for as long as was necessary.
By the time Dave and I moved to Nashville I had little by little surrendered my will for God's will. This called for regular and painful doses of releasing my desire to sing.

When I started to become successful in modeling and had a few famous country music singers tell me they'd help me with my singing career, I began to take grip of my dreams of singing again.
This time I was apparently strong enough to handle the final blow.
Believe me when I tell you as some people receive a gifted beautiful voice, I quickly received the gift of an out of tune voice!
God actually took the ability to hear pitch right out of me.
I could no longer sing in tune.

It took me a while to get over the blow to my system that I am a nobody with a nobody voice.
I curled up on the Lord's lap many nights crying myself to sleep now knowing that I did not have the ability to be anything important.
That is when God started to do the most change in me. I blossomed and grew like a weed under the understanding that I really was not anyone special. Only God in me is special. He is the one with the talent and the identity and the plan.
As I received this in my heart and surrendered my will for His will in me, He spoke to me and said a beautiful thing.
"I am your biggest fan"
God is the one with the unfathomable talent and yet He tells ME little nobody ME that He is MY biggest fan?! What a complete amazing Father we have!
I went for a walk with the Lord in a wooded park where He told me something I'll never forget.
I said 'Lord, tell me something about yourself.'
He said, "I AM".
those two words struck my spirit like a semi truck!
I said" you ARE I AM aren't you!
I AM good, I AM mercy, I AM forgiveness, I AM beautiful, I AM worthy, I AM talent, I AM love.......this went on and on and I laughed and teared up and was awed by His wonderfulness.
God is everything and He lives in me therefore i am everything (in Him).
God is beautiful therefore i am beautiful because He is beautiful in me.
God is talented therefore i am talented because He is in me!
DO you get it?
He is I AM, therefore i am.
My identity is not in my voice or my importance in singing and being known, God is important and my identity is in Him therefore i am important!
HAHA I don't need a voice of my own I have HIS.
What does this have to do with Matthew chapter 13 you might be asking?
Well, I will fill you in on what He spoke to me about Matt. 13 this morning on tomorrow's post.

Friday, March 12, 2010

"We Have to Jump"

Psalm 103:4
"who redeems my life from destruction; 
who crowns me with loving kindness and tender mercies;"

(somehow my posts formatting is messing up a bit I'm working on the problem:)



Last night while watching Le Miserables with my brother Chad I had a sweet revelation that brought me to tears.
Do you remember the scene where Jean Valjean rescues Cosette from the abusive caretakers?
He walked into the Inn with all his authority and scooped her right out of the grips of abuse and filth.
She was being taken advantage of abused verbally and offered 
over to anything that made the 
caretakers money. They didn't have an ounce of concern for her.
Jean Valjean was gentle with her, he showed her grace and love on their walk to Paris. He wanted her to know his love for her as a father loves his daughter. On their long journey to Paris Jean Valjean edifies her he shows her her value and worth to him. He calls her the Queen. He asks her to call him papa.
After he climbed the paris fortress wall with her on his back he located the spot to jump to the roof 
across from where they hid.
He grabbed Cosette and attempted to leap when she yelped out in fear.
He looked at her and said "we have to jump". She gave him a look that said "I trust you."
He gathered her in his arms and they leaped to safety on the other side.

As I watched these scenes I was ushered into a revelation that brought me to tears.
God the Father entered into my sin, an abusive filthy captivity with satan who wants to destroy me, 
who hates me and wants me to live in misery, and in that place God rescued me.
He takes me on a long walk called life on earth sharing with me how much He loves me and values me as His daughter. He asked me to call Him papa and he calls me queen because he has a crown in 
Heaven He will place on my head after our long journey through earth.
When it comes time to make a scary jump in life God picks me up, He doesn't want me to make the 
leap He does it for me. He just looks in my eyes to see if I'm willing to trust Him.
He jumps holding me.
God does not abandon us to do the scary hard things on our own, He's been walking with us the whole time and when a dangerous gap is between us and safety He picks us up to jump, with us in his arms. If we yelp out in fear he doesn't force us to go He simply looks into our eyes to see if we trust Him.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Focus Shifted



colossians 1:27
To them God has chosen to make known among the gentiles the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.

I remember a few years back when I lived in Nashville I was driving home from a hard long day of work.
My thoughts were on our financial troubles and I couldn't get past the fact that no matter how hard Dave and I worked we would still be in debt for many years even at our aggressive pace.
I turned to the Lord in my despair. Soon into my prayer while driving a song I had not heard in years played in my mind.
Turn your eyes upon Jesus. Look full in His wonderful face, and the things of earth will grow strangely dim in the light of his glory and grace.
As soon as I turned my eyes from the trouble onto Jesus the trouble disappeared.
I no longer saw the endless hours of work it would take to crawl out of the bondage of debt or the opportunities lost. I saw only Jesus.
The shocking thing is that Christ in all His glory moved inside of me. He did not shed any power or glory in the process. The same God that created, the great I AM, stepped into my flesh without stripping any of His power to be with me.
I am already full in Christ.
"You cannot put water into a full cup."-wells
I am already filled with the fullness of God.
(Ephesians 3:19)
God has a plan in my daily walk with Him. He has a plan even though I'm feeling the bondage of my debt He is working in me, through me and with that debt.
The peace that comes with releasing my will and knowledge of right and wrong to the Lord is all consuming.
I didn't know what He was doing in our debt but I trusted Him with it and I abandoned worrying about it. I kept my eyes on Jesus.
I'm reminded of this revelation as I am now faced with Jake's upcoming trial.
It's hard enough to wake up and realize all over again that Jakey is not getting ready for school in that moment....or that my parents are now alone in their home to a brand new silence they've never experienced in their home.
I once again give it to God and turn my gaze upon the one that loves me as far as the east is from the west. I cannot physically cope with the thought of Jake being shot and falling to the ground without me there to comfort him to catch him to tell him I love him more than life to be with him as he entered eternity...I have a hard time grasping this on my own but when I turn the eyes of my heart to Jesus I see all the beautiful truth.
One truth I see when looking into Jesus instead of my grief is to see that God surrounded Jake in His unfathomable love before Jake died. Jake's last words were "I love you"
The story behind that is for another post for now we can rest in that God was with him, which is better than me being there, God loves him more than I do.
I can also see the truth that God numbered Jake's days since before he was born.
and another truth is that Jake is in uncomprehendable glory experiencing the riches and glory of God in ways my mind cannot conceive.
When I look at Jesus I see that a silent home doesn't mean an empty home. God fills my parents home with His presence and He takes care of them and their hearts needs.
....when I turn my eyes upon Jesus the things of earth and my earthly understanding grow strangely dim in the light of His amazingness. Then we can see the truth.





Sunday, March 7, 2010

Are You Captive to Something?


I'm working on writing a post that is important to me, it's taking longer than I expected. In the mean time I wanted to share this incredible truth below from a God fearing man that Dave and I have learned so much from.


"We look at our Red Sea and wonder how WE will part it to obey and go forward. In reality, we step into it and discover that HE is the one that parts it, but only so far as needed for us to place one foot at a time in it. "

October 29, 2009 by Mike Wells 

“Therefore it says, When He ascended on High, He led captive a host of captives, and He gave gifts to men” (Ephesians 4:8).
So many of us, at some time in our Christian lives, believe ourselves to be enslaved to something. It is either a returning habit or a new one, but the slavery seems very real. We have said it before but God cannot, as a shepherd, lead someone that is sitting. We must move to be led, and that means that we must move into a truth to discover the reality of the truth. He has taken captive everything that could have held the believer captive. We are free! Growth for Christians does not comprise a series of efforts to make us free but a series of revelations that make known our freedom. We look at our Red Sea and wonder how WE will part it to obey and go forward. In reality, we step into it and discover that HE is the one that parts it, but only so far as needed for us to place one foot at a time in it. That is the life of faith. It is a lie that we are enslaved or captive to anything but Christ. However, the voice of sin, Satan, the world, and flesh are so loud that sometimes we sit in the chair and bemoan a condition that we do not even have. The glory of God is in choice, and there are none freer to make a choice than the believer. I have counseled people in a variety of situations, among which are several prisons, orphanages, alcohol and drug treatment centers, and with couples in troubled marriages. I have given them information and witnessed some miracles, but it was not the information that ever set the people free; it was their choice to act on the information and to walk in the freedom Christ had already given them. The one dispensing information can never take the credit for a changed life; it was simply that the believer chose to walk in a freedom that was given by Him. I am happy that being obsessed with Betty long before she knew it, that upon her discovery of my love, she chose me. I chose her first, but she responded by choosing me. I am happy that she was not forced to marry me but responded to my choice with her choice. God has chosen you, He chose to set you free, and now you will thrill Him by choosing to walk in it. It is a hard pill to swallow, but if you can choose not to go shopping naked, you can certainly as a believer choose not to walk in what you believe to be a behavior to which you are held captive. Admit where you are so you can leave where you are. Admit that you are choosing to stay in your state and let God work with your honesty.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Tears



This woman has touched the depths of my heart through this picture.  I'm deeply affected by her genuine sorrow. I do not know the gravity of her loss in the haiti earth quake but in my own heartache in losing Jakey my anguish wells up in empathy for her.
God help this woman! Lord bless her tears that they grow a forest of glory, godly attributes and life to her and those that love her.
I'm looking forward to meeting this woman in eternity. I cannot wait to see her face glowing with joy and her mouth with singing! I will see the harvest of her tears and sorrow from this very tragedy  blossomed into life giving fruit that we all can enjoy in Heaven. I will savor the fruit God has grown through those seeds we call tears.
Psalm 126:5-6
"Those who plant in tears will harvest with shouts of joy. They weep as they go to plant their precious seed, but they sing as they return with the harvest."

The way the Lord has revealed this verse in me at this time is in picturing that the seeds are precious and valuable....
It hurts that our Jakey was killed at 17 only 2 months ago, but In my sorrow I've trusted God with the conclusion. I trust God's will. As I hand over my anger and my will for His, and as I trust God with all that doesn't make sense in Jake's death and the upcoming trial for his murder. I shed tears because Jake is precious to me and it seems hard to hand over the justice of his valuable life being ripped away from us.  It's like handing every fiber of my being over to God to do what he pleases. I'm crying in the process of surrender, but my tears will produce a bountiful harvest.

I think "planting the precious seed" is the trusting. I think my effort in handing it over to God is the planting and the seeds are my tears. The seed grows into a bountiful harvest of fruit to be enjoyed and to give life to me and others. Praise God!
The Lord knows what He is doing even when I do not know what He is doing.

Psalm 28:7
"The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and I am helped; therefore my  heart greatly rejoices and with my song will I praise him."

(sorrow is the sowing rejoicing is the reaping / Our mouth had never been filled with holy laughter if it had not been first filled with the bitterness of grief /  tears like seeds falling to the ground and god growing a beautiful fruit tree that gives life and nourishment to others and brings joy to us and glory to god.)

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

3 Days and Nothing to Show for it!


Three days ago I started a very vulnerable and heartfelt draft for this blog.
I came back to it for days writing and re-writing sharing my heart and soul in this particular post about Jake and the Lord and truth and Heaven, many things I had been learning through this tragedy. What took me 3 days to finally condense into a readable post took me but a second to completely erase!
I accidentally erased the entire....ENTIRE.... post within a second.
Please bare with me as I muster up the courage to readdress this emotional roller coaster ride and try to recapture those 3 days of sensitive revelation from the Lord.
I have no idea when I'll be able to post it. In the mean time I'll share other things I've been processing and learning incase anyone wants to know. :)
I'm praying for you tonight. Thank you for checking in.

Monday, March 1, 2010

No Strings Attached

Colossians 3:24
"Since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. it is the Lord Christ you are serving."

There is no doubt that my aunt Jill, Gramma and aunt Jenny in this picture love my son Oscar to the depths of their soul.
They've wrapped around him in awe, cooing and taking in his every movement. (I just happened to capture that moment on film)
Oscar couldn't do anything right or differently to bask in their love any more than he already does.
Oscar has done nothing but exist, and even that was not his own doing.
They are captivated and completely in love, no strings attached.

God in His love for us has already given us everything. All the inheritance of His kingdom and the authority to rule with His Son Jesus.
We have all of His power at our fingertips, His glory through us,  and yet we have done nothing but exist and even that was not by our own doing.
There is nothing we can do to attract God or make Him love us more. He created you and me, we exist and He is completely captivated, He loves us, no strings attached.

If you go to God today, you go not to get something from Him. You go because you want to be with him. You go to Him to spend time with Him, you put aside your worries and wish lists.
You already have everything pertaining to life.
(we already have everything He has given us but all will make sense and you will see all the effects of His glory in us when we enter eternity)




Complaining? Stop and Enjoy the Lord’s Presence!



I'm moved by this picture to think these woman have so much more to complain about than I do in my lifetime and yet "God's presence is an absolute, and the peace of it is never to be surrendered to a situation." These woman can simply look within themselves where Christ dwells and not need anything else but Him, all else pales in comparison to Jesus the hope of glory inside them. ~ danae


October 8, 2009 by Mike Wells  
Deut. 28:47-48, Because you did not serve the LORD your God with joy and a glad heart, for the abundance of all things; therefore you shall serve your enemies whom the LORD will send against you, in hunger, in thirst, in nakedness, and in the lack of all things; and He will put an iron yoke on your neck until He has destroyed you.
If we are complaining, we are not enjoying the Lord’s presence. This statement can take a lifetime to move from head to heart. However, as we dwell on it, it will make more and more sense. We did not become Christians to work for God or to please God; the work has already been done, and the Father is well pleased with Jesus. We became Christians for God, and God alone. As the understanding of our position in Him expands, we see that His presence is in us, just as it was in the Holy of Holies. Christ Himself dwells in us! We are temples of the living God (II Corinthians 6:16)! All of life’s experiences have been moving us toward that revelation, and once we have it, everything changes. We can enjoy His presence in heavy traffic, in a hospital room, at a birth or a funeral, waiting for a taxi, sitting before the banker, walking or riding, or whatever we do. His presence is an absolute, and the peace of it is never to be surrendered to a situation. If we are looking without, we will find much to complain about. If we are looking behind the veil and seeing His presence with us in the midst of what we thought was a place of discomfort, we can have great joy. Once again we see that on this earth we make our own heaven or hell.