Sunday, September 26, 2010
I have been in a foul mood.
I am sure that the enemy doesn't like it that I am praying more, learning more, yearning to go deeper with God, developing boldness in witnessing BUT.....some things don't fall on his slimy shoulders.
This foulness has been ALL me!
I have been short-tempered, self-focused, lazy, gripey, and just short of mean.
(my kids may have said that I went way past mean :)
Anyway, I haven't wanted to utter a prayer or flip open the Bible since Thursday.
I noticed that I felt down right yucky. I noticed that I was being completely led by my feelings. I was not grounding anything in truth, nor did I want to!!
So Saturday morning God spoke to me through the megaphone of my daily scripture flipper that sits next to my sink.
The verse was 1 Timothy 1:15 "This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief."
Normally I would read that, ponder it, and move on.
Saturday.....I couldn't move on.
God distinctly (and sweetly) showed me my sinfulness. The past few days have been spent with me exerting little control over my fickle self.
And if left to self...............I will self destruct......sooner or later.
So God let me get good and sick of myself and then showed me who I am on my worst days.
Chief of sinners.......
God was just calling a spade a spade. That is what He graciously does. He waits on us to repent so we can move on.
I did....and I am.
Hebrews 4:12 "For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart."
Wednesday, September 22, 2010
I had just finished bath and shower time with the kids yesterday evening (Shep was finishing up mowing our dust bowl of a lawn due to no rain). I usually give Caroline a bath and Ava will take on the "mommy" role and help bath Zeke in the shower. They think shower play time is too much fun!
We began our usual time of applying lotion, pj's, and brushing hair. I was singing them a very soulful rendition of "Jesus Loves Me" when Caroline rolls over and props up on her little arms just like in the pictures I showed you blog before last.
I stopped mid-verse and began to praise her for trying so hard and as I clapped she began to get tickled.
The next thing I know Zeke (just 2 years old) plops down beside his "struggling to prop up" sister. He begins to mimic her position....then Ava (5 years old) followed her sweet brother's lead.
They are very accustomed to her disability. They really don't think about or ask about the why's and why not's of her handicap.
However, on this evening they forgot about all they could do and met their big sister down on her level. It was as if they were cheering her on with their posture.
They were laying beside her....propped up on their arms demonstrating with ease the same pose that requires maximum effort for her.
What was even sweeter was that they didn't notice that this was kind of "beneath them." I mean, after all, they can run and play but they just wanted to be with her.....do what she could do....and make her laugh like crazy.
As their mama, I soaked all of the sweetness possible out of it. I marveled at their simple kindness.
It was like God spoke to my heart and gripped it tight.
He said, "This is how you are to be, my child. You are to help others even when it feels beneath you. You are to strive to bring smiles to those around you who are struggling so. Don't you see that I do this for You? Even though I am God....I meet you right where you are. I roll around on the floor with you in the midst of your frailties. I encourage you to try hard and I show you examples in my Word of the right way to do things. My way is so simple that even children can lead you."
What a blessing this was for me....I hope for you as well!
Sunday, September 19, 2010
I have been saying that God is working in my life in the area of prayer. It is usually Him working out the lumps in this stubborn ball of clay that is me.
Along with studying prayer I am going through a Bible study on Revelation (Beth Moore's version). This book of the Bible always scared me growing up....it still scares me a little but it intrigues me more. I have never pretended to have God figured out but He takes the cake on the grand finale of His story for the world. It is beyond mind-blowing!
As prayer was mentioned in the verse above it just sent a cool picture through my mind.
God Almighty who sits on His throne....who reigns over all....who spoke creation into being....who redeemed me.....who still shows me mercy.....
SAVES and SAVORS my PRAYERS!
He keeps them in bowls. My (and your) prayers must mean a lot to Him if He keeps them in bowls.
What do you keep?
Unless you are a hoarder, you only keep things that are precious to you. These are things that money can't even buy.
And incense, what do you think of with incense? I think of a pleasant aroma....a sweet fragrance. A gardenia bush in full bloom will cause me to pause just to stoop down and give my nose a treat!
Can you picture this?
God. All-knowing. All-powerful. All-encompassing. The Great I AM.
Waits on you to pray.
Wants you to pray.
Wishes you would pray.
Watches for you to pray.
Woos you to pray......
so He then can save and savor your words to Him!
Amazing! What a savior!!!
Wednesday, September 15, 2010
As I watched her roll around and push up I thought I would capture her strenuous exercise through pictures.
Tuesday, September 14, 2010
When you try a great new restaurant, you strongly encourage others to go enjoy it for themselves.
When you see an amazing movie, you use your own words to spread the great ratings.
I'm there. Although it isn't a delicious food, a new restaurant or a great new movie.
It is old news. It is something we talk about often and do on occasion. It is prayer. God has been urging Shep and I to pray like never before. We don't understand why we are so compelled..we just are. It isn't easy....it won't ever be.
I have never been good at prayer. I lose my train of thought. I wonder if I am doing it right. I even drift off to sleep at times.
I believe something bigger is at stake. Maybe it is revival for our town and community. I don't know. Maybe God just wants to see if we will be obedient no matter how much our flesh fights against us.
I just know that I am captivated anew by prayer. Its power. Its authority.
I want undeniable change in my life and in the lives of others....addictions broken, bodies healed, minds cleansed, and families restored.
There is no other way! We want shortcuts. We want the 2 minute versions and expect God do adapt to our meager sacrifice. We want nothing to have to change for us!
In Mark chapter 14 Jesus asked his disciples, "Could you not keep watch for one hour? Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the body is weak."
I want others to "catch" this too. I desire for others to actually do what they say they believe. I want others to see for themselves the power and peace that comes from prayer. It satisfies like no food, no entertainment, or any other pleasure or passion we enjoy.
I look around and I see a lot of people saying they want more of God. They get frustrated that they experience no real lasting change. They are unwilling to do what feels unnatural to them. They simply will not sacrifice their time.
God, help us. Help me! I sense an urgency for your people to pray and it seems like they just won't. I struggle terribly in this area. I need encouragement. Help me to know how to pray, what to ask, what to believe, and what to claim for You. I don't want to offer you anything that doesn't cost me something. Please bring revival to our land. So many are hurting and need a Savior. So many are bound in their own prisons of self junk and need to be set free. So many need to see You as the God you really are...not the watered down version we believe because of what our eyes see. Compel us to pray. Give us perseverance. Give us a mind set of humility and grace. Pour out Your Spirit in ways we've never seen. Take our eyes off of ourselves. Forgive us for not being obedient in prayer. Forgive us for not understanding what could be stake. Forgive us Lord!!
Friday, September 10, 2010
It seems like just a couple of days ago I was posting about playing at The Pocket and here it is already Friday! Yippee...another couple days with my favorite folks.
This week has been a whirlwind of a week.
Tuesday was Zeke's first official teeth cleaning. I don't normally take my kids to the dentist at 2 years old but he had some staining going on. There was definite screaming and flailing of limbs but he made it through just fine.
Wednesdays are always long days because we end the day at church....the kids have Awana and I have choir and praise team practice. I don't mean that in a pessimistic way...it is just the way it is. Long days are tough on young whiny kids....and it is equally as tough on worn-out mommas and daddies.
This Wednesday was long for another reason. I started working again!
That is NOT to say that being a momma is NOT work because believe me...plenty gets left un-done at my house. But, in an effort to help out our family and Shep's business, I have begun working at his office on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.
I was a ball of nerves. I haven't been in an administrative work setting since college. But, praise be to God, I wasn't a total wreck. I managed to answer the phones correctly and assist with drafting letters and billing.
Thursday was Bible study day! God showed up and showed off. The video was.....well, there aren't words. WOW! Just really good and super powerful. I am still chewing on all that Beth Moore had to say. However, as I prayed that morning for God to give me words to say to the 20 plus women who would be there, I expected that it would be something encouraging and simple. To my surprise and delight...God had something much stronger in mind. He used my mouth as a megaphone to speak a strong challenging word to the women there and myself. I literally felt the Holy Spirit empowering me as each word came out of my mouth. It was all Him! I had not prepared anything other than pleading before Him in prayer. I love it when He does that!
Today ended the work week for me as I completed my second day at Tilley, Deems, and Helton. I must confess...Shep is a great boss! He is easy on the eyes and I can totally flirt with him and get away with it! There are perks for being married to the boss!!:)
Anyway, I am looking forward to the weekend.
Tonight is Relay for Life at Dellinger Park. I am honored to get to walk for team Chris O'Dell and to get to sing to my God on our praise team at the park. It should be a very moving and rewarding experience. I have lost friends and family to cancer and currently have others I love fighting their fight right now. Their lives and courage bless and encourage me to live my life to the fullest every day. Walking and singing for them will be a privilege.
As for Saturday......GO DAWGS!!!!!!!!
Monday, September 6, 2010
We went briefly on Friday evening but the kids had so much fun that we decided to go back on Labor Day.
There were lots of people picnicking and playing in the water.
Just wanted to include some pics of my pretty adorable family. Zeke fell several times and bloodied his chin and his shirt. I am finding that this is typical with my boy.
Happy Labor Day!
Wednesday, September 1, 2010
"You've grown lazy with Me. You have limited Me to what your eyes can see and what you can feel. Where is your passion for Me? Where is your time for Me? Why have you allowed past disappointments and upsets determine what you think I am yet to do?
Rekindle your love for Me.
I have called you to believe for the impossible. Step it up.
Set aside more time for Me.
Throw off all that you think you know of Me.
Let Me blow you away."
These are the types of things that God has been speaking to me. We are doing a ladies Bible study on Revelation and it has only intensified what I believe God is brewing inside of me.
My prayers are so stale.
My beliefs are too small. I talk a BIG game sometimes but at the end of the day...when no one is looking...do I give in to the hopelessness?
Revival is taking place in me.
I am praying that it jolts this town and this community.
We need to see that God is so much bigger than we have made Him to be!
He is giving me joy, kindness, patience, peace, self-control, and perseverance that I cannot drum up on my own. I am reveling in it.
Lord, there is nothing worthy about me. But I do love you. I am selfish at heart. I always look out for number one. However, I desire to know You like I never have. Cover me in Your righteousness and give me the "want-to" in my prayer life. Let others see You in me. Reveal Yourself and blow me away.