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Whispers in the Silence 

I’m learning slowly but surely how God leads. He knows all the parts and how they come together. Sometimes He seems too silent when I want Him to spell everything out clearly. Clear instructions written in the clouds. But not quite.

God is so precise in how He leads. He sees the whole picture in a way that I can’t.  It’s so much easier when I don’t have my own agenda.  So much easier when I count on Him to write the whole story  and not just a part.

I can follow,  I know I can. Even when it’s only His whispers I hear in the silence. He does speak, little brushes over our spirits. 

I haven’t blogged in a while mostly because I’ve been technologically disadvantaged for something like a month.  I apologise.  I’ve also been waiting a lot. And in this period of waiting, I have seen myself more clearly than I  ever have. It’s been refreshing.  🙂 

Anyone else  feeling God’s silence this season? Any lessons learned? 😀 

Bible Studies · Faith · Inspiration · Life Hacks · Spiritual

Tag! I’m It.

 Not my ministry, not my work, not my relationship or marriage, not the movie I want to make, not the help I want to give, not the things I know, not the ideas I come up with, not all my good intentions.

It’s like we’re in a game of Tag, and God says to us “Tag! I’m it.” That’s not how the game is played we say. “It’s tag you’re it, so I’M it.” We say. Duh, God.

“An idol is whatever you look at and say in your heart of hearts, ‘If I have that, then I’ll feel my life has meaning, then I’ll know I have value, then I’ll feel significant and secure.” – Dannah Gresh and Dr. Juli Slattery (Pulling Back the Shades)
I said this quote over and over to myself before writing this post. My striving was exposed for what it was. I felt like I was watching a movie of my life plus the bloopers! I have made good things idols along the way. Some I recognized , and others I didn’t until now.

Can God fully and truly satisfy us minus all the other “good” things that we just must have? All the logical things that we just must have – that we are certain we need? Could we truly be satisfied?

The truth is I don’t have all the answers right now. But I hope to have the answers I need soon. My eyes feel like they’ve been opened. I had no idea that they were closed.

I’ve thought about Joseph. God gave him an amazing dream (two actually, but they were pointing to the same thing), but it took thirteen whole years experience what God had showed him long before. The dream was good – great even. I imagine what torture it could have been for Joseph if that’s all he thought about while being a slave and subsequently, a prisoner for a crime he didn’t commit?

How about Abraham? Father Abraham. God says to papa AB, “I’m going to give you a son. Like from your actual body.” He waits twenty-five years with his wife Sarah before that would ever happen. If all he ever thought about was having that child, what torture it would have been to wait without a set date? God didn’t tell him when. Not until a year before anyway.
God didn’t always tell people exactly when. Not Noah. Not David. He still doesn’t always tell us now. Wouldn’t it be torture if that’s all we thought about? When our God-given dreams would come true?

God doesn’t want us to look to any thing to fill us up. Even good things – especially good things – can become idols. God wants us to look to Him. He wants to be IT.

If I was really honest with myself, I would say that I would love to know what that’s like: A life of God completely satisfying.

I want to be full today. Always. Never wanting for anything. Come rain or sunshine. Through storms and stillness. To be truly full. Not ok. Not just ok.

I don’t want to strive anymore. I don’t want to push and claw through life. To have and have. I want my identity to be completely in Christ. My value, my significance, my happiness and joy, my peace, my hope, my adventures.

I know in my heart that the answer lies in saying, “Ok, God, Father…I give up. You be IT. Have it your way. I don’t like surprises but fine. Why don’t You decide where we’re going today? Why don’t You decide our activities today? You want me to go where?! Ok..? OK! I can do that. Do what?! Uhm..no problem. Wait? Err..sure. Anything You say is fine with me. I trust You with my life. You already gave me Yours. I’ve got absolutely everything to gain and nothing to lose if I realize that I’m not even mine.”

OK GOD. YESSS. I’M DOWN WITH WHATEVER. Yes, Lord, whatSOever.

Your turn.
 

Dreams and the Future · Faith · Life Hacks · Spiritual

Beloved, and Loving the Wind of Change!

I’ve been navigating some difficult things this period of my life; the silence, the confusion…did I say the silence?

It seemed like on the things that mattered to me, God was silent. It seemed like God was unfair for allowing me to experience the pain I did. I struggled some and triumphed some, but I still wondered if God was with me. I knew it but I could not feel it.

Today, God opened my eyes to the thorn in my side. I said to my Father, now, in my mind, I am free, but I do not feel free. I asked Him to MAKE me free. He showed me something WAY bigger than I could ever have anticipated. He freed me from the bondage of ignorance. He blew on me a wind of change.

God made me realize that He is love, and as large as He is, He wants to pour every drop of Himself into me! So I saw through His eyes, how precious I was (am) to Him, and I began to thirst for every drop. I have become convinced – FULLY convinced – that God wants to give it ALL to me!! To Him, I am worth every drop of His amazing love. I am precious in His sight. All His love is for me to desire and receive and experience. I am the Beloved of God!

Today, I cried out to my Father, “You are just! And Your judgements are fair O God!” God is indeed just and merciful for allowing me to go through the darkness and pain. I could not see it when I was in it, but when I came out of it, I saw that it was by the mercies and love of God that He took me through the valley of darkness. I praise You God, for You are merciful; all Your ways are true!

Now, I can begin again, in full assurance of God’s love because He patiently took me through this place from which I have come. I am eternally grateful. I would have given much to know what I know today. Dear fellow sojourners, if you see me, you will see a thirsty soul, thirsty for the love of God. You will see an insatiable soul, because I will never say enough! Oh God! Your love is better than life and I want EVERY drop!

    

Faith · Inspiration · Life Hacks · Spiritual

Be Hopeful

Life is sometimes bland, crappy, and occasionally interesting. Be hopeful. Don’t just “be hopeful”; be JOYFUL in hope!

That’s basically all I have to say in this post. Cool isn’t it? (Or not.) It’s the truth. 🙂 

I’ve been struggling with cynicism. I, the optimist, have faced my biggest challenge yet: REALITY. You see, I’m a dreamer. It’s my design to dream – a lot. I forget sometimes that God uses the real stuff to test me. By test, I mean to cause me to grow. We don’t grow when everything is green and perfect. That’s a heaven type experience really. We grow when we are faced with affliction. 

The thing is I’ve been trying to follow Jesus’ way because the Bible says that “Christ, even though He was a son, learned patience by the things He suffered.” I’ve been working on my patience, but it turns out that I’ve been numbing myself to the pain – the suffering. 

If you are going through some suffering, I urge you as God is urging me, to be hopeful. And not just hopeful. Be JOYFUL in hope.

It’s not easy. It’s straight out difficult. But so very rewarding. Joyful people are beautiful. Faking smiles doesn’t help anybody. Smile. Laugh. Dance. Sing. Cry if you have to, but for your sake, REJOICE!

“May our Lord Jesus Christ Himself and God our Father, who loved us and by His grace gave us eternal encouragement and good hope, encourage your hearts and strengthen you in every good deed and word.” (2 Thessalonians 2: 16, 17 NIV)

  

Faith · Inspiration · Spiritual

The Time Thing

Things DO get clearer with time. We do need time in order to discover certain things – like purpose. I’m learning new things about myself because time and what events it allows have given me the opportunity. This is why patience and understanding are important.

Life has forced me to see things differently. I, like Jesus, am learning patience through the things I suffer. Like Joseph – so I can have the wisdom he had to make the right decisions for an empire. Like Moses who would learn restraint after forty years. Like Hannah who would understand the most important things. Like Abraham, so he understood the sovereignty of God – that God and His promises were bigger than he was. 

Again, like Joseph. Joseph had dreams. God Himself gave him the dreams. His first introduction to slavery must have stunned him and left him stunned for years until he understood the sovereignty of God – that the God who gave him the dreams was able to bring them to pass ALL BY HIMSELF. What Joseph, Moses, Abraham, Jesus, had to do was be FAITHFUL. God was God all by Himself.

Thank You LORD.

  

Dreams and the Future · Faith · Inspiration · Life Hacks · Spiritual

Restless Spirit

For the most part of my life, I have been defined by my dreams and ambitions. GREAT ones at that. The more impossible, the better. Every year was lived for the year or years ahead. The past was a great resource and the future was my passion. But the present? Hmph. Dread. 

Actually stopping and living in today? Actually not trying to make tomorrow fit into my lofty ideas? That’s scary. How does a person do that? 

One day, I realized that I was in Tomorrow. Tomorrow was today. Big revelation. What have I accomplished with my life? 

Today, I penned down my most significant experiences. I didn’t go into much detail, but I penned them down nonetheless. They didn’t consist in any of my supposed successes. They had more to do with the people I had blessed in some way and those who had blessed me. With a smile. With words. With their lives. Specific points in my life that have affected me. They were about people. They were about the love and patience of God. 

I’m restless as I usually am and  the source of my restlessness is fear. Fear that I would be wasting God’s precious gifts-especially the gift of time. I imagine that greatness is about businesses and legacies and some great deed that makes the world pay attention and applaud. I realize that I am wrong. To be greatest in the kingdom is to be least said Jesus. 

But what if I miss these opportunities? What if my life doesn’t make a dent? What if I live out my life like every normal person? Fears. Perfect love casts out all fear the Bible says. I could never be normal if I choose love. Loving isn’t normal. Loving is hard some times. Often. A lot?

God, I really want to understand this. Please Lord, help me be transformed by the truth. Thank You LORD.  

Amen.

    

 

Faith · Inspiration · Spiritual

Rainy Days

“May the Lord lead your hearts into a full understanding and expression of the love of God and the patient endurance that comes from Christ.” (2Thessalonians 3:5 NLT)

I felt compelled beyond my own desire, to write this blog post. I honestly have no idea how long or short it would be, although I’m leaning towards something short.

Suffering. This weighty word that comes along with the blessings and promises of Christ. The Bible says that Christ Jesus, though He was a son, was made perfect through suffering. It isn’t the kind of thing I like to hear about. I like to think of only the nice and happy things, and skip “the valley of the shadow of death”. 

“Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for You are with me…” (Psalm 23:4)

Why does David say that? Why does it even come up? The sheep will have to go through the valley. And when they do, they have to trust that their shepherd knows where he’s leading them. They have to trust that he is still with them even when it’s so dark that they cannot see.

I’m walking through the valley. It’s dark and I cannot really see. He’s with me, but it doesn’t change my circumstances. I still am not at the end of the tunnel, where I can see the light. He speaks to me, and comforts me, but I’m not where I want to be. My thoughts are in the safety of the pen. In the warmth and light. But he says, “I’m here.” He doesn’t tell me how long I would walk in the valley. But he wants me to trust. It’s a little cold. It’s dark and I’m tired of walking. “Are we there yet?” 

“May the Lord lead your hearts into a full understanding and expression of the love of God and the patient endurance that comes from Christ.” 

I want to be tough, and I want to drown in self pity at the same time. I NEED to trust. I need my heart to be soft. At the end of this journey, I wouldn’t be the same. I would be beaten and humbled and meek. I would be strong. My strength would be the rare type, found in the rough parts of the mountain. In the parts least travelled by.

This is what my heart has always hungered for, and now I am learning the price I have to pay. I am clay. And God is the potter.

Amen.

Dreams and the Future · Faith · Inspiration · Spiritual

The Important Things

I must confess that this isn’t the sunniest period of my life. I’m having to learn endurance much more than I’d like. Being where I am and experiencing what I am has forced me to define what things are important- what things should be important.

The first thing is that God is the Designer. He created the laws that always come into effect in this world. For example, the law of gravity: if you throw an orange up, it might come crashing down on your face. God designed us to be transformed by the hard things we experience. “Jesus Christ, though he was the Son, learned patience by the things he suffered.” (Hebrews 5:8) Even Christ.

I’m going through a lot of hard and uncomfortable things, and they are happening all at once. But the thing that bothered me he most is how God sees me. I’m concerned to ask, “Father, am I doing alright?” What should be my focus? What are the things that if I do them right, I’ve done alright? 

I used to think the big questions in life where about figuring out he right career to fit my passion. Good intentions. But, “we fix our eyes not on what is seen but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is UNSEEN is eternal.” (2Corinthians 4:18 emphasis added). Everything else is secondary. It about what give and bear in LOVE. It’s about how we love God and others. That’s it. 

Everything on earth is designed to work with us or against us. But we get to choose. We get to choose what we keep our eyes fixed on. We get to choose the important things.

It’s important for me to share all these things with whomever may pass by. It’s important for me to respond in love to those who need it- by my empathy, my words and my actions. It’s important for me to endure when I’m in the valley, keep walking when I’m on the plains and rejoice when I’m on the mountain. Abase and abound. Bear and receive. 

I am humbled everyday when He teaches me the right direction to look. I am humbled that I should know this love and freedom in going His own way- a way designed in love for me. Abba, Father…

Here’s a helpful link to a devotional I read recently:

http://links.zondervancorporation.mkt4728.com/ctt?kn=16&ms=NDg4MzY0NTgS1&r=NDY0NTE2MzEyNjcS1&b=0&j=NzAxMTMwMzc5S0&mt=1&rt=0

Everyday Life Hacks · Faith · Life Hacks · People · Relationships · Spiritual

The Hurt

“We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help us develop endurance. And endurance develops strength of character, and character strengthens our confident hope of salvation. And this hope will not lead to disappointment. For we know how dearly God loves us, because He has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with His love.” (Romans 5:3-5)

I realize that I need the hurt to teach me what love is. The hurt does something to my character because I choose in Christ to be helpless- to be unable to do anything about the hurt. Like Jesus Christ said “I choose to lay down my life. No one takes it from me.” (John 10:18 paraphrase)

The hurt makes me able to feel- to bear a burden on behalf of another person when I take their wrongdoing towards me upon myself. 

Without this hurt in this age- this imperfect age- there can be no true love. Love hurts because people hurt.

I accept. 

Thank You LORD.

Imperfection

Humility

Brokenness 

Patient endurance 

Pain

Forebearance 

Perserverance

Helplessness

Disability

Weakness

Thorn

Shame

The Cross…