Look Inside

You wonder why she did it. She had a man. She had the money, and she had the babies. What more could she need? But what’s inside, we never see.

You ask why he pulled the trigger. They were innocent. They had dreams, and they hoped for a brighter tomorrow. Why the hate that he would breed? But what’s inside, we never see.

You question why so many are broken. We search for an answer. He squanders his years on sex, drugs, power and an alibi. She relinquishes her rights for deceit, slander, lies and control. How are they consumed with what others have decreed? But what’s inside, we never see.

Inside is a hopelessness. Broken hope brings the promise of life, when below the surface, the reality is death. Lost hope promises beauty, strength and all riches; yet, behind the veil lies only destruction. Forgotten hope declares a better future will surely come; although its well worn path is only a graveyard of mud and bones.

Come beyond with me, and I will show you a better way. I will show you life in abundance, joy overflowing and hope everlasting. Come inside, and you will see.

Penned – MG – 6/6/18

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Choose Well

I saw this post the other day, and I thought, “This describes exactly how I’m feeling and what I needed to hear today!” It was Christmas Eve morning. I had 2 church services to attend, songs to sing while on praise team, a devotion to share during offering, Christmas gifts to deliver, people to greet and names to remember, smiles to give and necks to hug. All that before 11:30 in the morning, and I’m not exactly a morning person… Really, it was no different than any other Sunday (except the gifts), and I really do love what I do; yet, that morning, I was feeling frazzled, stressed out and insecure.

Honestly, I had stayed up too late the night before, and I was feeling weary. I had been excited about Christmas coming, and I had gotten everything done about 11:00pm; yet, I just kind of piddled until I got sleepy, an hour after midnight, which doesn’t fare too well when you rise at 6:00am on Sunday!

I was, also, going through a bit of an emotional battle, feeling unworthy, insignificant and internally “bluesy.” All of this was adding up to make the day a very sour lemon! Then, I came across this pic that I had just saved the night before, thinking I might use it for a blog one day, (lol!) and it was as if everything came full circle right a that moment. I was reminded of my philosophy for living: Life is what you make it. It’s all in your perspective and the choices you make.

I didn’t need to let my circumstances rule my emotions. I didn’t need to allow my feelings to be my guide, and I could not permit my choice of lack of sleep and struggling thought patterns to dictate how I would worship my God, engage with people, and follow through with the commitments I had made.

I had a choice to make, and I decided to choose well. I chose to breathe it all in. I chose to slow down, be deliberate and be aware. I chose to have joy, to rejoice in our Savior, and to be thankful in my heart and my head. I chose to savor life and those around me. I chose to smile and allow the wonder and happiness of the moments to not only fill my smile but to fill my soul and my whole being.

It was Christmas Eve, and this one only comes once. More importantly, it was Sunday, and we live in a free country where we can still worship as a congregation. We serve a great God who is worthy of all our praise! I wasn’t going to miss that! It was, also, the day I get to see a lot of people who may or may not be there tomorrow, because after all, none of us are guaranteed the next breathe, and in this crazy world, you never know what might happen!

It was an amazing day, and I am so thankful I made the right choices. 😊

We all have choices to make everyday, every hour, and even minute to minute. What will you choose today?

Looking For A Sign

Read this Scripture today, and even though, I’ve read it before, it seemed to come alive to me once more. “Lord, You are my portion and my cup…” He not only is what fills me, but He is the vessel which holds the filling, the portion. He is truly all we need! 

Our pastor’s sermon this morning was titled, “Surrounded by Miracles While Still Asking for a Sign.” He talked about how everything around us is a miracle. We live on this little blue marble, which circles this great big ball of fire, while a sphere of rock illuminated by that ball of fire controls and maintains our ocean tides, all hurling through space, while all surrounded by rock and death and other masses of fire. This tiny blue marble has the perfect conditions for life and oxygen, wind and rain. All the while, we have this heart beating within our chest over which we have absolutely no control, and we still sit here demanding God for a sign. We keep saying, “God, I don’t see any miracles today. I don’t see Your hand moving as it once did. I can’t see any miraculous acts declaring Your glory and power.” 

How blind are we? How wicked is our wayward heart? There are miracles all around us, we just fail to see them. Our eyes are not given to us to see. Our eyes are given to us to look through. We must allow Him to give us the right perspective. We must allow Him to cause our eyes to see. 

2 Kings 6:17, shows us how the Lord does this. Elisha was surrounded by the army of Arameans who were commanded by the king to kill him. Elisha’s servant saw this army and was afraid while Elisha didn’t fear. He knew God was on his side and would win the battle. Elisha prayed this prayer for his servant, ““Open his eyes, Lord, so that he may see.” Then the Lord opened the servant’s eyes, and he looked and saw the hills full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha.” (2 Kings 6:17) That’s a pretty big difference in just a moment of time. God gave him a new perspective. 

Sometimes, we must have a new perspective to see clearly. There are times in our lives when God isn’t going to answer the prayers we pray the way we believe they should be answered. There are going to be moments when things don’t make sense, and we wonder where God is and if He has forsaken us. There will be other days when we get into the mode of comparing our lives with someone else’s and wondering why God is blessing them so much, and we just seem to get the skimpy leftovers of life. 

That is when we need to remember this scripture in Psalm 16. This is when we must remember the story of Elisha and his servant. This are the very moments when we must ask God to give us the right perspective that we might see His miracle right here within our own chest.  

I pray He’d give you eyes that you might see. 💗

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The Mailbox Is Full

Are you one of those whose voice mailbox is always full? People call your number only to receive the automated voice which says, “I’m sorry the voice mailbox is full and cannot receive any more messages.” I know, those of you who know me personally are chuckling right about now. Sometimes I am the world’s worst about cleaning out my mailbox. (#sorrynotsorry). My problem is being a keeper of too many memories, but that’s another story for another day…

Regardless of the reasons for a full voicemail, having one full inhibits a new message from getting through. Having a full mailbox causes a backup, a blockage, a hindrance of something new or something important being delivered to you. People have to recall, send a text or try to remember to give you the message upon the next time seeing you. This method isn’t very helpful, and it can definitely pose a problem in the case of an emergency or an important moment of contact when missed.

This made me start thinking of when God is trying to get “a message” to us. Sometimes, our minds are full of so much clutter that we can’t hear truth. The volume in our head is too loud. Our thoughts overrun whatever message He is trying to send, because we never shut them off. We never make time to just be still and listen.

Sometimes, our imagination is at such a high that it causes the volume in our head to be too low. Our daydreaming has become so unruly that we constantly live in a “happy place of nothingness,” and we miss His message, because we’re not connected to the moment when He speaks. We miss an opportunity, a person of influence or a moment of impact, because we are never present where we are.

I don’t know about you, but I want God to be able to get through to me at anytime, night or day. I want to be so in tune to His voice that no matter what is going on, where I am, or who I am with, He is able to speak, and I immediately hear. I want to be free from clutter, and I want to be living in each moment of every day, never leaving anything to chance.

Lord, help me to clean up my “mailbox”; so, I can clearly hear Your voice. Help me to turn the volume down in my head when it gets too loud by walking out into the woods or standing beside a waterfall to remind me of who You are and who I am not. Help me to turn up the volume in my head when I am distracted by the void of nothingness. Always remind me to live fully in every moment You give me, for I never know when it might be the last for me or someone I love. Let my life be of impact to those around me, because I am in tune with You, and I know when You speak.

 

What Do You See?

  Sometimes, your vision is everything… 
In 2 Kings 6:17, Elijah prayed this for his servant: “Open his eyes, Lord, so that he might see.” 

What do you see when you look at people? What do you see when you are in the middle of chaos? What do you see when you are surrounded by those who have less than you or, maybe, who have more? What do you look at? What do you envision? 

What you see makes up who you are. It will determine if you live as a victim or as a victor. If you always see negative, you will tend to be a negative person. If you see hopelessness and despair, you will be a fearful person and you will have a tendency to either run away from problems or avoid anything that might appear as a challenge. Yet, if you see hope and strength, you will have a tendency to be a fighter, a person who doesn’t give up too easily. If you see love and prosperity, you will tend to seek out those with whom you have camaraderie and with whom you can succeed. Depending on what you look at, you will see trouble or triumph.  

What you see will determine where you end up in life. If you don’t see success, you’ll never achieve it. If you don’t see possibilities, you’ll never see a promotion. If you don’t see faith and integrity in others, you’ll never learn to trust and open up to another person. You can look at people all day every day, but if you don’t see them, you’ll never be able to reach them, and you’ll never be able to learn from them.  

So, I’d like to leave you with a few questions to ponder… 

When you look at yourself, do you see all your faults and failures, or do you see a child of the King?  

When you look at your children, do you just see your little ones and the responsibilities they bring, or do you see a king or a queen?  

When you look at this world, do you see sin or a sinner who needs Jesus? 

When you look at the cross, do you see a burden hard to carry, or do you see the story of a promise desperately needing to be shared?

What do you see?

House of Glass 

 Fish bowl living is not an easy life.

Be careful what you say in your moment of strife.

It can be an invasion of rights, no privacy, no grace.

You can prove to the world your mouth is full of mace.

 

The house of glass is so delicate, so fragile.

People feel no remorse to throw a stone so casual.

Knock too hard, and the panes may just shatter.

They don’t think twice to have their circle full of chatter.

 

The fish bowl can get crowded as others try to see.

No matter how hard they imagine, their lives will never be.

When you’re on the outside looking in, you think you know it all.

When you’re on the inside searching out, you realize how easy is the fall.

 

Penned – MG – 3/30/16

Shimmers Like Gold

       

The lake shimmers like gold.

 

I drove across the lake today. As I looked at the water it seemed to be shimmering, as if it was a pile of diamonds glowing in the sun. It was simply beautiful. 

This moment reminded me that there’s beauty all around us, all the time. We just have to open our eyes and see it. We can get so busy in our everyday drives, in our daily routines, and in our weekly habits that we miss the beauty that God placed right in our midst. Do you ever just stop to actually smell the roses? Do you ever just pause at night and look up at the stars? 

God placed us here amongst His creation to enjoy it and to praise Him for it. Yet too often these days, I think, we are too busy to even see it clearly. Sure we might pause for half a millisecond to watch a bird on a branch, to hear it chirp it’s little song, but then, we have appointments to make, things to do, people to see, and then we leave, missing out on its beautiful praise. 

We must stop. We must get away. We must get alone until we’re not alone anymore. We must seek our Maker, and then, we’ll be able to see and hear what He has for us. His plans, His creation, His ways are so much clearer when we step out from among the chaos of our lives and step into His presence. I think I’d like to see Him today in the shimmering gold on the lake. I’d like to hear Him in the rustling of the leaves. Would you like to join me?

“Let the heavens rejoice, let the earth be glad; let the sea resound, and all that is in it.  Let the fields be jubilant, and everything in them; let all the trees of the forest sing for joy. Let all creation rejoice before the Lord…”   Psalm 96:11-13a

Clarity

A MOMENT OF VISION

IS WORTH A LIFETIME

OF SIGHT

…Think about it…

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“Where there is no vision, the people perish…” Proverbs 29:18

A Child’s Perspective

I love to see pictures that a child has taken, especially a younger child, like maybe between the ages of four and ten years old. Have you ever taken a moment to look? My son took this picture the other day, and I thought it turned out incredible. The cabin is totally focused; yet, all of the surroundings are completely blurred.

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This picture created a thought within me… “What if we approached our lives like this?” Living life with one focus and one focus alone. Carrying on through our daily routines with one main goal, one desired end. Living a life in which the central goal is in complete focus while the surroundings are just sort of out of focus. Having that main focus being Jesus at the center of our life.

Too often, we go through life with so many goals, so many desires, so many ambitions that, too often, it seems the central focus gets blurred, and we get tuned into one thing and then another. We move from one agenda to another, many times, forsaking the real purpose we are even here on this planet. When we have too many agendas, too many goals, too many desires to be met, we become scattered, distracted, even chaotic in our witness and our testimony.

When we keep “the main thing the main thing,” HE is able to bring all the other things into the right focus. HE is able to show us the things which are needed and those things which are not. He is enabled to be the Lord of our lives, and the world turns to gray as it loses its hold on us.

In this new year, let us remember Who that central focus should be. Let us remember Who the one goal of our lives should be. Let us start this new year with one main thing, one goal, one central focus, JESUS, who will take us to higher heights, deeper depths and wider opportunities than we ever thought possible!

“Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead…” Philippians 3:13

Help Me To See

I look in the mirror and see my own face.

I tend to neglect the needy to embrace.

I listen intently to hear my own voice.

I seem to ignore the hurting that need to rejoice.

 

I go my own way, busy in my own life,

Forgetting You’ve called me to be a good wife.

I run from here to there, scurrying to get the job done,

Neglecting You’ve told me to raise my young son.

 

I read in Your Word to always put Jesus first,

Believing that I do until I realize my own thirst.

I hear from Your servants, “Never make idols to love,”

Believing that I don’t until I recognize what they’ve become.

 

Change me and my perspective. Make me what You desire.

Draw me out and cleanse me from this filthy mire.

Transform this mind into the intellect You have planned.

Make this heart as malleable as the shifting sand.

 

I need Your touch; I need Your grace.

I long to feel your sweet embrace.

I long to walk beside You, hand in hand.

I thirst for Your righteousness and Your promise land.

 

Be my strength and my ever-present Light.

Be my focus and be my heart’s delight.

Be my reason to face each new day.

Be my guide and show me every step of Your way.

 

Help me to see those around me in need.

Open my ears to hear those who want to be freed,

Cause my hands to reach out to those in sin.

Give me the boldness to tell them how to change from what they’ve been.

 

Penned – MG – 6/29/02