Thursday, March 3, 2011

Learning to Let Go

Today I had the pleasure of going to Bible Study; it is an all-women Bible Study and we have been reading a book entitled "The Search for Significance" by Robert S. McGee. I love our discussions because everyone is so open and candid...and real. One of the ladies mentioned some really awful things her mother used to tell her and how that has just manifested and grown into a "cancer" for her over the years. Those hurtful words which were lies hang constantly over her head and keep her from finding her full potential in the Lord. I mentioned to her that what her mother had said was a LIE. Whenever those bad thoughts come in to her mind, she simply needs to say the name of Jesus and remember that she is a child of God. At the name of Jesus all evil must flee. What power there is in the name of Jesus.

This particular lady in my Bible Study is just one person whose past constantly haunts them. I believe that there are so many more of us that share this same problem. If it isn't something from our past, it is something that just keeps us from realizing our "significance" as a child of the living God. He loved us before we were ever formed. Paul writes to us in Ephesians 1:4 (NLT): Even before He made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in his eyes.

YES, friends, God knew us before the creation of the world. God knew everything we would ever do, that we would be sinners and let him down...and yet He still chose us. He still loved us. Jesus, the Holy Spirit and God were all present when Man was first created. Genesis 1:26 (NLT): Then God said, "Let us make human beings in our image, to be like us..."

What an amazing thing to comprehend that even at Man's creation, Jesus/God knew that he would one day be our sacrifice. Friends, we MUST learn to let go of the things in life that bog us down and keep us from living victoriously in Christ Jesus our Lord. Life is too short. We are here to be lights in a darkened world, to be encouragers for God. We are here to bring glory to His name.

Isaiah 54:17 (NAS): "No weapon that formed against you will prosper; And every tongue that accuses you in judgement you will condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the LORD, and their vindication is from Me," declares the Lord.

Romans 8:38-39 (NIV): For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Friends, as Christians, always know and remember that God loves YOU. We are his and no one can take us from him. I ask that you please stay in the Word of God, which is the sword of the Spirit (Ephesians 6:17). That is the only thing that will help you fight against the plotting of the devil and keep his evil intentions from hindering your victory in Jesus.


Wednesday, February 9, 2011

"Great is Thy Faithfulness"

Yes, I remember singing this beautiful old hymn at the small town Methodist church that I grew up in. Many of these seasoned hymns have special meaning for me as my Grandmother was the choir director and I watched her every Sunday as she stood before the choir and sang her best for Jesus.

This particular hymn, written in 1923 by Thomas Chisholm, is especially meaningful to me tonight as I read the lyrics posted on a CaringBridge entry written by my cousin today. We've all been praying for my sweet baby cousin, Elias who was born in Singapore last week with a heart condition. Needless to say, there were many, many...MANY "prayer warriors" praying for this precious baby. Miraculously, he was released from the hospital today, he'd been on oxygen and had been eating through a tube at one point. The doctors have said twice this week that his progress has been "amazing" - what a testimony for this sweet little boy!! God is so good!

At the end of her post this evening, my cousin concluded with this:

Pardon for sin and a peace that endureth
Thine own dear presence to cheer and to guide;
Strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow,
Blessings all mine, with ten thousand beside

Great is Thy faithfulness
Great is Thy faithfulness
Morning by morning new mercies I see.
All I have needed Thy hand hath provided;
Great is Thy faithfulness, Lord, unto me.

Those words just filled my heart with joy. I couldn't have said it better. Glory be to God!! I thank Him and I praise Him for his loving kindness and tender mercies...and most of all I'm thankful for His forgiveness.


Monday, January 24, 2011

BOY or GIRL: That Is The ?

I recently came upon a discussion about parenting, it was very interesting. There were several ladies discussing things, and it turned in a different direction before I could really digest and articulate my thoughts.

After digestion, here is what I came up with and how the conversation came to pass:
I had mentioned that I thought it was a shame that Brad and Angelina's beautiful little girl Shiloh, was being dressed like a boy. I know from reading articles that Shiloh apparently adores her brothers (which is so sweet) and wants to be like them. In a quote from Vanity Fair magazine, Angelina said her 4 year old daughter dresses "like a little dude...she likes to dress like a boy. She wants to be a boy. So we had to cut her hair. She likes to wear boys' everything. She thinks she is one of the brothers."
There is only one small problem with that: She is not a boy.

Now, don't get me wrong...there is absolutely nothing wrong with being a tomboy (heck, I was one, I much preferred to ride my Big Wheel and play with Tonka trucks rather than my sisters Barbies). A couple of examples of the tomboy difference from Shiloh's case are: Tomboys may prefer the outdoors and baseball to dance and tap, and don't like dressing like a girly-girl, BUT they are still shopping in the girl's section of the department store, and maintaining the identity of a girl.
Several of the mothers interjected that they weren't sure whether or not they would or would not let their daughter shop in the boy's section of the department store (or vice versa for a boy), for fear that they would be hindering their child's freedom and need to freely express themselves and be who they are.

As a Christian mother, here are my thoughts (I have tried to keep all opinion out of the matter and write solely based on Biblical fact):

I would not let my child go play in a bush of poison ivy simply because "he/she really wanted to" nor would I let him/her go play in a swarm of wasps nor would I let them just go jump in the deep end of the pool without a life vest (knowing they cannot swim) because they were confident enough to do so. Why? Because it would inflict physical harm upon their body, and could potentially end in their death.

Dear friends, so it is with our children's souls as well. The Lord gives us our children so that we may guide them and direct them according to His ways and not just let them simply do as they would please. How would they ever survive, and how would they ever learn right from wrong?

Yes! Certainly let them be free to learn and be themselves, but as with most things in life, there are limitations to what they should/should not be able to do. And we should look to God's Word for direction. They are God's own creation, He created them either a woman or a man and they should thus learn to be happy and rejoice in what God, their creator saw fit to make them.

In 1 Corinthians 6:9-11 (New International Version), Paul writes: "Or do you not know that wrongdoers will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor men who have sex with men* nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God."
*1 Corinthians 6:9 - The words men who have sex with men translate two Greek words that refer to the passive and active participants in homosexual acts. (reference: & Bible)

I am not going to turn this into a post on homosexuality. I will say that I do have homosexual friends whom I love dearly and they are some of the most positive people that I know. As much as I love them, I have to remember what the Bible tells me in 1 Corinthians 6 about their fate if they do not repent. Whether or not you believe a person is born a homosexual is neither here nor there, that is strictly an opinion. The bottom line is what God's Word says.

Just as I don't want my child to be a drunkard or a slanderer or an idolater. I as their parent have to guide them along life's journey and share God's word with them so that they will not become these types of individuals.

In today's society, the only thing we seem to remember or concentrate upon about God is that He is a loving God. But let us not forget that he is a just God as well. He lays that out in His word; one example being the fate of Sodom and Gomorrah in Genesis 19. In today's world, we only want to think of Heaven, but dear friends, may we not forget that there is a Hell.

God sent his son Jesus, as the ultimate sacrifice to forgive repentant sinners and save those that truly believe in Him. He did not do that in vain. Consequences of living in sin are real. As Christians, we cannot pick and choose what we want to believe in from the Bible. God is the same yesterday, today and forever. It is our society that changes, never His Word.

No rational person who has read the Bible can say that "Jesus was a good man" and not believe that He is the Son of God. Why? Because Jesus claims to be the Son of God in the Bible, therefore, if the reader does not believe that, then he makes Jesus out to be a liar. And liars are not "good people". So what I am saying is, that either you believe the entire Bible to be true, or else it is a complete and utter lie.
Alas...I digress...
In conclusion, this post was written with love from a Biblical perspective. It is certainly not meant to pass judgement on or to "blast" or "jab" at Angelina or Brad's parenting or any other persons parenting for that matter. I recognize that they are parents who surely love their children and are doing their best to raise them as they see fit. Perhaps they are not Christians, along with someone else who may come along and read this; if so, they can totally disregard this post and we can agree to disagree.
If they are Christians, then it may be that they have not considered the things written above. Nevertheless, I believe Shiloh and any other child should be taught to love themselves as God's creation. In Shiloh's case as a female whom God created and let her embrace her beautiful feminine identity...even if as a Tomboy (smile).

Love -

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Home & Snow Bound

Oh the horror! Stuck in the house for 3 entire days with two lovely, but wild children...makes you want to scream, huh? For an instant, I had a "HERE'S JOHNNY!!" moment. (just kidding) Well, we survived. Albeit, we did have a good time too. Kiddos really took advantage of those Christmas presents, and we did get out to play in the snow for a bit. The first day was of course awesome; gorgeous, white, powdery snow to play in and daddy was there so that was a plus too. The next two days, looking at nothing but ice, ice and more ice with no daddy were a bit less fun, to say the least; we muddled through with coloring, and games to play. (sigh) I read tonight that school is back in session tomorrow, I had this little leap of butterflies in my stomach and actually felt all giddy inside. I could just hear the song from the Wizard of Oz playing in the background and I was holding hands with Dorothy, the Tin Man, the Lion and Scarecrow as we ran together joyfully through the poppies. "You're outta the woods, your outta the dark, you're outta the night. Step into the sun, step into the light..." I managed to find the bit of the movie with the song below...very short, but perfect for how I was feeling.

All in all, we had a good time, but, I am very thankful that school is back in session tomorrow...with no delays at that! (smile)


Monday, January 10, 2011

Alas...These Political Times We Live In...

Well...there's one thing for sure, "Everybody HAS an opinion". And you know what, everyone is entitled to their opinion - at least America thinks so. That is one of the things I love about our great Country. The only problem is...all of these "opinions" can sure cause heated arguments and unfortunately, sometimes end in a bad way. However, there is an answer to this dilemma! What is the answer you wonder...well, simply this: we are not put on this earth to convince anyone that our way pun intended "the right" way. (as far as politics go, amongst other things)
Easier said than done for most, but, that is the truth. So much energy is wasted being angry and mad at "the other side".
When you really think about it, why do we get so heated in trying to persuade someone to think like us, when 9 times out of 10 it will NEVER happen. So WHO CARES I say...and I'll also say this...I LOVE to debate and I love to hear other's opinions, it CAN be very enlightening. I love to hear what the other side has to say. When things get too heated, it is very easy for me to agree to disagree. It is the respectful thing to do.

Most importantly, always take your thoughts and requests to the Lord, He is the Author of all things, He knows best and can help us through things like this.

DON'T EVER be afraid to defend and/or discuss how you feel and what you think/believe is important in a respectful way, wise men will listen to you and make their own decisions without taking things too far. The primary goal should be to respect your fellow man (who has also been blessed with a brain) and agree to disagree when things get heated.

Like John Mayer said, "Say what you need to say".