Callings Will Change You

I do not own this picture. Art by: Klein

I read something recently that began, “Your calling is going to crush you.”

If I weren’t a Christian, and I’d never heard of a calling, or that statement might intimidate me.

If I weren’t called, that quote might make me wrinkle my forehead and wonder why someone would be liking to be crushed by something they chose.

But that’s where information and revelation alter your perspective.

See, when you have no revelation, you might not understand why I do the things I do.

When you have no revelation, you might not grasp the importance of my choices, if my sacrifices, of my disciplines.

Oh, but when you have a revelation, your eyes are open, your heart is refreshed, your soul longs for one more moment, one more taste of that living water you’ve found.

And you’ll do anything to maintain it.

You’ll do anything to keep it.

You’ll do anything to remain in it.

You’ll lay down desires, and expectations, demands and wishes.

Just for another moment.

It’s like finding a new love, but it’s so much more.

It’s like recognizing a new craving, but it’s beyond that.

It’s like getting a glimpse of paradise, but it’s to a greater extent.

If you’ve never experienced the moment, it will be difficult to explain it.

For it’s not a simple piece of knowledge that can be spoken or read about.

You have to fast it.

You have to feel it.

You have to experience the revelation.

Then, you’ll never be the same.

Jesus answered and said to her, “If you knew the gift of God, and who it is who says to you, ‘Give Me a drink,’ you would have asked Him, and He would have given you living water.”

John 4.10

As the deer pants for the water brooks, So pants my soul for You, O God.

Psalm 42:1

Be Good To You

Too often, we work so hard to be kind to others that we forget to be kind to ourselves.

Sometimes, our focus is so laser set on what everyone else needs that shut our eyes to our own.

Frequently, we are so set to serve and fulfill everyone else’s wants, that we deny all of our desires.

Many times, we are so overly in tune with everyone else’s demands that we simply ignore as our body, our mind, or even our family is crying out to wake us from our oblivious yes.

Be good to you doesn’t mean you have to be selfish.

It doesn’t translate into having to be rude.

It doesn’t even suggest a response to be petty, mean and self-centered.

It only interprets and communicates:

“I am a person of value and worth just as much as you.”

Speak kindly to yourself. Balance it with truth.

Be honest with yourself. Balance it with compassion for all things broken.

Respond with the overwhelming grace that only He can bring.

Listen attentively.

Watch conscientiously.

React respectfully.

Both for you and for them.

And above all, let Christ rule and reign in your heart, in your mind, in your soul.

And let His will become yours.

Let His heart consume yours.

Let His eyes and ears become yours.

Let His voice speak through yours.

And only then, can your world become the peaceful paradise it was meant to be.

Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things arejust, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things. The things which you learned and received and heard and saw in me, these do, and the God of peace will be with you.

Philippians 4:8-9

Not that I speak in regard to need, for I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content: I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound. Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

Philippians 4:11-13

And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus. Now to our God and Father beglory forever and ever. Amen.

Philippians 4:19-20

Life, Liberty, Pursuit of Happiness

Every life is entitled to breathe.

Every life is entitled to be born.

Every life is entitled to live.

Why would one rejoice when that is stripped away?

Why would one celebrate when that is refused?

There can only be two reasons for this jubilee.

That one is deceived and doesn’t recognize the error of the deception…

Or that one is evil and doesn’t care to take a breathing, striving life…

If one does not realize the mistake, truth can be revealed and transformation can set in.

But if one sees and hears evil and calls it good, if one ignores what is true and demands for pure hell to rule, blessings are stolen and joy is desolate.

For no one can survive under the iron arm of animosity. No one can endure under the heavy hand of antipathy.

When the innocent are lost, barren mothers weep and lifeless graves mourn.

When life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness is given a chance, life wins.

The Spirit of God has made me, and the breath of the Almighty gives me life.

Job 33:4

For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them.

Psalm 139:13-16

https://www.iol.co.za/lifestyle/family/pregnancy/womb-surgery-saves-triplets-1799928

Father’s Day…Delayed

There’s an old song that says, “You can’t always get what you want,” and although I don’t necessarily want to promote the song or the singer, the statement holds some truth.

Scrolling through social media on Father’s Day weekend brings this truth to a glaring reality when you’re a daughter of a broken home and a not so idealistic parental relationship.

However, these are also the perfect moments for God to do what He does best. His Word says, “A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in his holy dwelling. God sets the lonely in families…” Psalm 68:5-6.

Throughout my life, He has brought incredible “fathers” to fill the void, and I am eternally grateful for them and for all He has done. ❤️

So, if you find yourself in a similar predicament, LOOK UP.

Your Heavenly Father loves you and is waiting for you.

And look horizontally, He will bring those father figures close when you need them. 💞

He heals the brokenhearted And binds up their wounds.

Psalm 147:3

What Do We See and Who Do We Seek?

Today’s been one of my reading days…

I’ve been catching up on articles that have surprised, challenged or even overwhelmed my thoughts on normality and what “being good” is all about… no, I don’t look at life through sheltered eyes, and sin really doesn’t “surprise” me.

Yet, what overwhelms my heart is the truth of Scripture that tells us (paraphrased), “The fields are white with harvest, but the laborers are few.” …and they are SO few. We are so burdened with the cares of this world, I’m not sure how many lost we actually see in our day-to-day, and if we do see them, do we just keep on walking by trying not to offend?

What boggles my mind is the rampant demand in our culture to call good evil and evil good. There is a new “common norm” that is flowing like a rushing River. All those opposed to it are hailed as evil, trying to build a dam to stop the flow, and some in that parade even give the confusing claims to Christ while shouting everything He hates is good and everything He loves must be from hell itself. Others stand on the wall of the dam screaming at the water, describing all the nastiness in the liquid but never giving it hope to see that the dam isn’t there for its detriment but rather for it’s transformation to something better.

What challenges my soul is how I can reach out in love AND truth to share His story, even if it might be just one life at a time. How can we create a culture that loves God, hates sin, seeks His perfection while compassionately love the imperfect-ed around us?

Can’t it start with just one? Doesn’t it start with me and you turning our accusing fingers back at our own hearts and kneeling at the foot of a bloody cross and repenting?

Oh God, help us to have eyes that SEE the lost. Help us to have a heart to CARE that they’re lost, and help us to have the courage to SPEAK Your Truth! Your children have been silent for far too long…

“If My people who are called by My name will humble themselves and pray, and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways: then will I hear from heaven , and I will forgive their sin, and heal their land.”

2 Chronicles 7:14

Monday Musings: Lessons Learned from 2020 and COVID-19

This has been quite a year for so many, and some would say this has been the absolute worse year ever, others would just say it stinks. I’m not sure there’s many at all who would say it’s been the best year; yet, maybe a three year old could have this perspective.

I will say it’s not been an amazingly wonderful year; it’s certainly had it’s challenges. However, I’d have to admit, it’s not been the worst year I’ve ever experienced.

Some of the worst years of my life were the year after my grandfather passed away, or the year we lost our first child after trying to conceive for 13 months, or the year I battled depression for a good half of the year… yeah, perspective always brings sunlight into the day.

Yet, there are some things this year of 2020 has taught me, and I thought I’d add it to my previous lists written near the beginning of all this

1. No matter what comes into my life, with God, I can walk through fire and I can stand in the rain…even if I have to grab the fire extinguisher and maybe a boat paddle!

2. Regardless what the days bring, you still have a choice to take another breath and move forward or clamp down on oxygen and lie down to die…I choose to breathe.

3. Despite the ugly, the tornadic, the chaos or the devastation, there is always hope, you just have to search for it…often times, it will be buried deep within.

4. Although, there may be confusion and uncertainty, if you know the right source from which to draw strength, you will have an endless supply…the Source is your key.

5. Life brings with it all kinds of ups and downs, doubts and fears, turmoil and challenges, questions and very few answers; yet, when you have a firm foundation, those specific answers may not always become easier to find, but the principles to these will be as sure anchor doe your soul.

6. Everyone needs a friend. Choosing to live out your life in isolation and avoidance is just a waste of life! … choose friends carefully, but choose them.

7. Having the courage to call out when you’re in trouble can be scary, and it definitely will make you more vulnerable than many of us like to be, but honestly, having moments of vulnerability brings humility back into our prideful flesh…and the courage it takes to ask makes us all that stronger.

8. Life has been known to bring us lemons, and sometimes, they can be the sourest ever grown, but if you’ll add a little sugar, you’ll find that lemonade to be quite refreshing… mind you, sometimes, you better add a lot!

9. No matter the clouds that brew overhead, always remember, there is a sun still shining. You may not see it today or tomorrow, but keep looking up, and it’s bound to eventually burst forth and warm up your skin.

10. If you believe there is no hope to ever be found, just stop in your tracks, take a deep breath, and place your hand to your heart to feel that beat…if there is still a rhythm, then there is always a glimmer of hope.

Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful.

Hebrews 10:23

Therefore, with minds that are alert and fully sober, set your hope on the grace to be brought to you when Jesus Christ is revealed at his coming.

1 Peter 1:13

I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people…

Ephesians 1:18

Monday Musings

Am I growing old before my time?

I was always told I’m an old soul…

Am I aging with grace and wisdom?

I’ve always been told my heart’s river runs deep…

Am I deepening my knowledge or my love?

I was told to love wisdom is to understand His loving kindness…

We have a choice in life…

We can assemble all those memories, and we can only see the pain and injustice…

Or we can gather the joys one by one, pick out those moments of serene peace, select those tiny miracles that don’t happen every day…

And relish in the here and now while looking forward to that beautiful ever after…

I think I’ll choose the beauty…

I believe I will grasp the sunshine…

I will strive to always opt for the good…

Never ignoring, but rather, discarding the hatred and violence that threatens to distract my journey…

And I’d suggest for you to do the same…

It is possible…

If you will believe…

“Whoever is wise will observe these things,

And they will understand the lovingkindness of the Lord.”

Psalm 107:43

“Get wisdom! Get understanding!

Do not forget, nor turn away from the words of my mouth.

Do not forsake her, and she will preserve you; Love her, and she will keep you.

Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore, get wisdom.

And in all your getting, get understanding.

Exalt her, and she will promote you;

She will bring you honor, when you embrace her.

She will place on your head an ornament of grace; a crown of glory she will deliver to you.”

Proverbs 4:5-9

Monday Musings

There’s nothing better than a great big glass of ice cold water after a 3 mile walk in the heat of the evening.

You’re parched. You’re tired. You’re breathless.

Yet, that water is like snow in the desert.

It’s refreshing to the bones.

It’s reviving to the muscles.

It’s rejuvenating to the very soul.

This is just how I have found my God to be.

I’m not talking about finding religion, and I’m not trying to convince you of an ancient tradition.

I’m just referring to a Friend who sticks closer than a brother.

I’m pointing toward a comfort in times of need, a peace that surpasses all your understanding and a fulfilling joy that words just can’t seem to describe.

You might scoff, and you might even turn the page, but I challenge you to simply try Him.

Just say His name.

Jesus.

He can be refreshing water for your weary mind.

He can be a babbling brook for your exhausted heart.

He can be a living stream for your parched soul.

On the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.”

John 7:37-38

Friday Fun Day

I don’t know about you, but those little sparkles that you can buy during the Fourth of July holidays make me feel like a little kid.

They light up the night.

They sizzle.

They pop.

They bring sweet memories rushing in of innocence and laughter.

If you’re struggling today to find some peace, and if your striving this week to find some joy, just go pick up a box of those sparklers.

Light ‘em up.

Let them spark.

Let them bring a moment of joy to your heart, and remember there’s still hope.

Because there’s still breath to breathe.

Enjoy your Friday Fun Day!

“You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.” Psalm 16:11

Whimsical Wednesday

Sometimes, things don’t turn out like they should.

Sometimes, your dreams change or disappear.

Sometimes, the aspirations of yesterday get middles in the chaos of today.

Yet, there is still Hope, and it can find a way.

Just take a moment to breathe.

Just take a second to relax

Just step back from all the confusion and deeply exhale.

Just remember, there is a God who can shelter you in the gale.

Penned 7/7/20 MG

“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.” John 14:27