Sunday, August 4, 2013

In Your Hands

"But I trust in You, O Lord; I say, "You are my God." My times are in Your hands..." Psalms 31:14-15
This verse has really stuck out to me lately. I have to remember that "my times" are in His hands. He has my future already figured out, He knows what tomorrow holds. My job is to fully surrender to Him and trust Him!
What has God called you to do? What dreams do you have? Today my pastor said a phrase that really made me think, he said, "The day we stop dreaming is the day we start dying." God has placed within you dreams and callings and He wants you to dream big! 1 Thessalonians 5:24 "He who calls you is faithful; he will surely do it...." He is so faithful and when we partner with Him awesome things can and will happen!
So my challenge to you (and to myself) is to ask God and seek Him for what He wants you to do, where He wants you to go and how He wants to use you. Put your trust in Him and keep dreaming!

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Listening to God's Voice

I heard this story and was so moved by it that I had to share it!..
I pray that as you read it, you are inspired & moved. God still speaks and He answers prayers today!

***A young man had been to Wednesday night Bible Study. The Pastor had shared about listening to God and obeying the Lord's voice. The young man couldn't help but wonder, "Does God still speak to people?"After service he went out with some friends for coffee and pie and they discussed the message. Several different ones talked about how God had led them in different ways. It was about ten o'clock when the young man started driving home. Sitting in his car, he just began to pray,"God... If you still speak to people, speak to me. I will listen. I will do my best to obey." As he drove down the main street of his town, he had the strangest thought to stop and buy a gallon of milk. He shook his head and said out loud, "God is that you?" He didn't get a reply and started on toward home. But again, the thought, buy a gallon of milk. The young man thought about Samuel and how he didn't recognize the voice of God, and how little Samuel ran to Eli. "Okay, God, in case that is you, I will buy the milk." It didn't seem like too hard a test of obedience. He could always use the milk. He stopped and purchased the gallon of milk and started off toward home. As he passed Seventh Street, he again felt the urge, "Turn down that street." This is crazy he thought and drove on past the intersection. Again, he felt that he should turn down Seventh Street. At the next intersection, he returned back and headed down Seventh. Half jokingly, he said out loud, "Okay, God, I will". He drove several blocks, when suddenly, he felt like he should stop. He pulled over to the curb and looked around. He was in semi-commercial area of town. It wasn't the best but it wasn't the worst of neighborhoods either. The businesses were closed and most of the houses looked dark like the people were already in bed. Again, he sensed something, "Go and give the milk to the people in the house across the street." The young man looked at the house. It was dark and it looked like the people were either gone or they were already asleep. He started to open the door and then sat back in the car seat. "Lord, this is insane. Those people are asleep and if I wake them up, they are going to be mad and I will look stupid." Again, he felt like he should go and give the milk. Finally, he opened the door, "Okay God, if this is you, I will go to the door and I will give them the milk. If you want me to look like a crazy person, okay. I want to be obedient. I guess that will count for something but if they don't answer right away, I am out of here." He walked across the street and rang the bell. He could hear some noise inside. A man's voice yelled out, "Who is it? What do you want?" Then the door opened before the young man could get away. The man was standing there in his jeans and T-shirt. He looked like he just got out of bed. He had a strange look on his face and he didn't seem too happy to have some stranger standing on his doorstep. "What is it?" The young man thrust out the gallon of milk, "Here, I brought this to you." The man took the milk and rushed down a hallway speaking loudly in Spanish. Then from down the hall came a woman carrying the milk toward the kitchen. The man was following her holding a baby. The baby was crying. The man had tears streaming down his face. The man began speaking and half crying, "We were just praying. We had some big bills this month and we ran out of money. We didn't have any milk for our baby. I was just praying and asking God to show me how to get some milk." His wife in the kitchen yelled out, "I asked him to send an Angel with some. Are you an Angel?" The young man reached into his wallet and pulled out all the money he had on him and put in the man's hand. He turned and walked back toward his car and the tears were streaming down his face. He knew that God still answers prayers.***

"Do not forget to show hospitality to strangers, for by so doing some people have shown hospitality to angels without knowing it." Hebrews 13:2

What about you? In what areas of your walk with God do you need to be more obedient? He will speak to you, lead you and answer your prayers!

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Heart of Worship

"Praise the LORD. Praise God in his sanctuary; praise him in his mighty heavens. Praise him for his acts of power; praise him for his surpassing greatness. Praise him with the sounding of the trumpet, praise him with the harp and lyre, praise him with timbrel and dancing, praise him with the strings and pipe, praise him with the clash of cymbals... Let everything that has breath praise the LORD." Psalm 150

This psalm talks about praising God in different ways, with dance, different instruments,in different places or situations, and praising Him for what He has done, praising Him for His greatness. Let everything that has breath praise Him! It doesn't matter where or how we praise Him just that we do in the midst of any situation. Sometimes it is easy to praise God and sometimes it is really difficult. Trials and hard times can lead us away from God or cause us to forget the good things He has done for us. But remember that Praise comes from our hearts and that it is all about HIM. As I reflected on this Psalm and what Praise and Worship really mean I was reminded of the worship song, "Heart of Worship," as you read the lyrics really think about them...
Heart of Worship
When the music fades 
And all is stripped away 
And I simply come 
Longing just to bring 
Something that's of worth 
That will bless your heart 

I'll bring You more than a song 
For a song in itself 
Is not what You have required 
You search much deeper within 
Through the ways things appear 
You're looking into my heart 

I'm coming back to the heart of worship 
And it's all about You 
All about You, Jesus 
I'm sorry Lord for the thing I've made it 
When it's all about You 
It's all about You Jesus 

King of endless worth 
No one could express 
How much You deserve 
Though I'm weak and poor 
All I have is Yours 
Every single breath 
Our Praise and Worship to Him needs to be completely about HIM. It has nothing to do with me or you or us... We need to realize that worship comes from the heart, from deep with in us. Not just a few songs we sing on Sunday. 
You have breath so praise HIM!... No, it doesn't have to be with song. It can be in your everyday coming and going. Think of ways that you can PRAISE Him today, in your present circumstances and your current situations... And remember its "All about You, Jesus."

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Find You on my Knees

I heard this song today by Kari Jobe called "Find You on my Knees" and I was once again reminded of how faithful God is to speak to me through music and lyrics of songs. The lyrics are posted below but a part of the song that really stuck out was the bridge where the words say "When my hope is gone, when the fear is strong. When the pain is real, when it's hard to heal. When my faith is shaken and my heart is broken and my joy is stolen, God I know that You lift me up, You never leave me searching..." 
This week has been a crazy one (already... its only Tuesday!) and though there is A LOT to look forward to (Pentatonix Concert tonight, Iron Man 3 on Thursday!) the troubles of life, car problems, work problems, financial problems, all seem to pile up...  And instead of looking at the good I tend to focus on the bad... 
Today, in the midst of all my "problems", God reminded me that He is faithful, that when fear is strong, when pain and hurt are real, He is there lifting me up. He will never leave me. "So what if sorrow shakes my faith, What if heartache still remains, I'll trust you, my God I'll trust you. 'Cause You are faithful" That is my prayer today... not only for myself but for all of you (whoever happens to read this blog). That you would trust in Him, trust Him to bring you through whatever may be weighing you down or filling your mind today. He is Faithful!
Remind yourself today of all the ways He has been faithful, of all the times He came through. Reflect on those things and rest in Him!

Find You on my Knees
by Kari Jobe

Troubles chasing me again,
Breaking down my best defense,
I'm looking, God, I'm looking for you
Weary just won't let me rest and fear is filling up my head.
I'm longing, God I'm longing for you

But I will find you in the place I'm in, find you when I'm at my end,
Find you when there's nothing left of me to offer you except for brokenness.
You lift me up, you'll never leave me thirsty,
When I am weak, when I am lost and searching
I'll find you on my knees.

So what if sorrow shakes my faith,
What if heartache still remains,
I'll trust you, my God I'll trust you.
'Cause You are faithful and

I will find you in the place I'm in, find you when I'm at my end,
Find you when there's nothing left of me to offer you except for brokenness.
You lift me up, you'll never leave me thirsty,
When I am weak, when I am lost and searching
I'll find you on my knees, my knees.

When my hope is gone, when the fear is strong
When the pain is real, when it's hard to heal
When my faith is shaken and my heart is broken and my joy is stolen, God I know that
You lift me up, you'll never leave me searching,

Find you in the place I'm in, find you when I'm at my end,
Find you when there's nothing left of me to offer you except for brokenness.
You lift me up, you'll never leave me thirsty,
When I am weak, when I am lost and searching
I'll find you on my knees."

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

A Gentle Whisper

“The LORD said [to Elijah], "Go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the Lord, for the Lord is about to pass by." Then a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake. After the earthquake came a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper. When Elijah heard it, he pulled his cloak over his face and went out and stood at the mouth of the cave. Then a voice said to him, "What are you doing here, Elijah?”
1 Kings 19:11-13

This story has always been one of my favorites… It reminds me of how God talks to His people. I know that we, as Christians, sometimes think that God will talk to us with this booming voice saying exactly what we need to do or where to go. (Which He sometimes does!) The thing is though, generally God talks to us in different ways like through a gentle whisper, or through the words of a song or the words of a friend. 
I was reminded of this recently when I was answering a friend’s text message. I was telling him that I've been busy lately, not overly busy, but that the drama of work and personal life can sometimes make life seem busier. I told him that I’m trying to remember to take life one day at a time... His response really hit home and was exactly what I needed to hear. He said, “We have to seek contentment and peace in any situation God places you in life… Sometimes that means just taking things one day at a time! But you can always take heart knowing that God is for you and with you even if you don’t know what tomorrow will bring.” Without even knowing it my friend spoke God’s promises and truths to me about what I have been seeking Him about. What a great reminder that God knows my every need, hears every heart cry and knows how to speak to me.
What are some areas you've been seeking God?  Rest assured that He does hear you, He is listening and He is speaking to you! It just might not be exactly how you’d expect it!

Friday, February 1, 2013

The Battle Belongs to the Lord

"It is better to fight the battle within yourself than starting a war."

A wise friend of mine said this phrase and it has stuck with me. I've been mulling it over in my head and thinking about how it relates to the spiritual realm. A verse that popped into my head was Ephesians 6:12 "For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms." There is a daily battle that we as Christians face. Not physically among others in the world but against the spiritual darkness. 
Every day we struggle with things internally, sometimes we shrug it off as "Oh, that's just life," but really it’s Satan attacking us from within. If we don't fight against it (not in our own strength but with GOD's help) then it eats us inside and we turn it outward, to others, affecting our work places, our friendships, and our relationships. In this daily struggle with the powers of darkness within yourself remember that the battle belongs to the LORD.  
1 Samuel 17:47 "The Lord doesn't save by using sword or a spear... The battle belongs to the Lord." Surrender it to Him, let Him fight for you!

The battle belongs to the Lord and he graciously fights for you. What in your life do you need to give over to GOD to fight for you?

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

What's Holding You Back?

John 11:43-44, "Jesus called in a loud voice, "Lazarus, come out!" The dead man came out, his hands and feet wrapped with strips of linen, and a cloth around his face. Jesus said to them, "Take off the grave clothes and let him go." "

Lazarus was dead... Not just kind of dead he was DEAD. He had been in the grave for 4 days. When Jesus came to him He had a different idea. Jesus called Lazarus out of the grave and miraculously he was given his life back.
Thats just like us. We are dead in our sins, even the little sins can hold you back. But Jesus is saying to you, "Take off the grace clothes..." (Verse 44) Imagine the freedom that Lazarus must have felt taking off those smelly rotten grave clothes! YOU can have that same freedom through Christ!
Reflect on this verse and ask yourself "What's holding me back?" and "What's binding me?" Then allow Him to put new garments on you, as it says in Isaiah 61:10, "For he has clothed me with garments of salvation and arrayed me in a robe of righteousness..."