True POWER

Where do you find your power?

Where do you find your strength for living?

Where do you search for might when all seems lost, and you feel you can’t take another step or even another breath?

Ok, so this will be controversial, but I’m not really looking for a debate or a fight. Just gonna share with you what I know to be true in my life.

Some chase after fame, fortune or prestige. Some run after men/women, programs or jobs. Others seek for friends and family to bring them encouragement and stability. Still others try to find their strength, and even their peace, in a bottle, drugs or sex.

I’m here to tell you, all those things will fail you. All those things will, eventually, leave you broken, desolate and hopeless. Only One can bring you all the hope, peace, strength and power you need. His name is Jesus, and He loves you right where you are!

If you don’t know Him, just say His Name. Just ask Him to reveal Himself to you today. He’s pretty good at that. 😉💗

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What Do You Do In The Pit?

The story of Beniah, son of Jehoida, that is found in 2 Samuel, is always a challenging one for me. It’s not like he went looking for that pit, and it doesn’t appear he was expecting to find a lion when he fell in. Yet, when the adversity came against him, he was ready. He didn’t hesitate. He didn’t back up, and he didn’t cower in despair. He fought, and he fought valiantly, and only onlybecause of this response, he won!

This is really how we should approach life and adversity that comes our way. We are built internally with a natural “fight or flight” mentality; yet, if we approach every situation with a flight response, we will never learn how to persevere under pressure. We will never learn to excel despite the odds. We will never learn the depth of our strength and ability, because true character is produced through our perseverance in trials.

If Beniah had run in fear that day while in the pit, he would be dead, and his story could never be an inspiration to us today.

Something to think about… 😉

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?

Fears Have You?

As this year draws to a close, I wonder, what fears are you battling tonight? What fears have you overcome this year? Maybe there is a fear you are seriously trying to overcome, but you don’t know exactly how to “squash it?” There is Hope, and there is an answer…

Trusting in God doesn’t instantaneously wipe away all fear simply because we believe… yeah, I said that. Now, those of you who believe in Him, please, don’t pick up your rocks to throw, just hear me out…

He is a good God. He is a BIG God, and He is a God who loves us so very much that He sent His son to die for us to save us. He is a God who, when He says in His Word He will do something, you can be 100% sure He will follow through. He’s a God of absolute Truth. He IS Truth; therefore, He simply cannot lie.

So, when He says to fear not, because He is with you, He means it. He’s right there with you. Yet, sometimes, even when we pray, believe and trust in Him, that fear can linger, not because He’s not God anymore but more because, sometimes, our heart has to grow stronger in our belief…because sometimes, we are fighting a fear that has deep roots in our lives, and we have to slay that giant on the battlefield of our faith just as David went out on the battlefield with Goliath and struck him down…because sometimes, we’ve got to lay down that fear with which we’ve walked in agreement since our childhood and stand firm in our faith and believe in His sovereignty and grace regardless of what our feelings might be screaming at us…because sometimes, our faith has been weakened by our lack of preparation, or because our consistency of feeding the flesh rather than the spirit, or because our faith has been beaten and worn due to previous battles, and we just need to rely on Him more than our own strength and ability.

That’s what it all really boils down to: total reliance on Him rather than ourselves. That’s where He wants us. That’s where He does His best work, because that’s where our testimony isn’t how we did some great thing to conquer the fear, it becomes how our Great God did an amazing thing and conquered the fear in us and through us!

So, next time you’re battling a new fear, or you’re trying to conquer an old one, and it just seems that demon is gaining ground, just call on His Name, trust Him and believe; them, watch Him do what He does best! 😉

A Curious Thing

Death is such a curious thing.

I want to weep and wail, scream and curse at no one in particular

Yet, I long to let my furry flow.

I want to punch and kick, run and stomp

at no person specific

Yet, I yearn to unload and unwind.

I want to tell every naysayer, “You’ll never know this kind of love.”

I want to tell every well wisher, “You’ll never understand the pain.”

But then,

I look upon Your face

Your whisper draws me closer still

Your eyes coax me to silence

Your hands comfort my tears

You remind me of Your sufficient grace.

You remind me of Your unending mercy.

You fill me with Your peace that surpasses all understanding.

You overwhelm me with Your love that is always without limit.

Where can I go from Your presence?

Where can I flee from Your shadow?

You see every corner of my world.

You fill ever space within my heart.

There will come a day I can breathe again.

There will come an hour I will see.

Until then, I will allow Your Hope to be my anchor.

Until then, I will dream of what could have been and what will be.

Heaven is going to be a beautiful thing.

Penned – MG – 9/19/17

Right Perspective

It’s all about perspective…

Saying goodbye to your love for a few days or saying goodbye to your husband for a three-year deployment…

Waiting an extra month for the house to be built or rebuilding after total storm devastation…

Trying to forget a petty wrong or trying to forgive decades of abuse and neglect…

Wrangling a passel of kids and feeling exhausted or working the night shift hoping to make it in to see your baby before she leaves for the day…

Worrying about your kiddos passing grade on the next exam or struggling to believe your teen will make it home safely from the inner city hood tonight…

Genuinely missing your best friend who flew over seas or walking the journey of grief for the very first time…

Having overwhelming leg pain that results in bed rest for a day or rolling a lifetime of hours with a wheelchair and cane….

Doctor reports that alter a lifestyle of living or walking the halls of the ICU hoping the life support brings restored vitals and vitality…

We all think it’s so easy, or we all think it’s too hard, until we walk a moment in their shoes…

It’s all about perspective.

*I do not own or possess either of these photos. They came from a simple Google search on perspective. Just thought they emphasized the point.*

Friday’s Friends #30

Today is FRIDAY!! Whoo-hoo! 🎉 That means it’s time to share a new “friend” with you.

I just found this sweet blog yesterday, and I thought it was perfect timing for today’s weekly event. My apologies for not having it posted at 11:00 this morning. I got distracted by a few things that had to be done, and I’m just getting back on here. 😜

Hanna has a great outlook on faith and hope, and I especially liked one of her more recent posts of how God is helping her to grow and strengthen spiritually, emotionally and mentally. She has a lot of wisdom for a young lady, and she’s learning more day by day. I do hope you’ll visit her site today, and I hope you’ll find encouragement as I did.

Where Do You Go In The Storm?

These past few weeks, we have been reeling from the recent storms and natural disasters all across our nation. There have been hurricanes, floods, fires, tornadoes, and various fallouts because of these natural, yet horrific, occurrences. So many have been evacuated, displaced, overwhelmed and even killed in the process. It can leave a soul weary and weathered from it all.

Yesterday being 9/11, reminds me of all the turmoil and heartache that can brought in an instant. It reminds me of the precious lives that were lost and the heroes who spent their last dying breath to save another.

It causes my heart to ponder the simple question, “Where do you go when the storms roll in?” Some hunker down and ride out the winds and the waves. Some run, drive away, flee from the danger that blows in, and still others try to go back and forth, running in wisdom or fear, only to find themselves anchoring back in for the long haul of destruction, evaluation, rebuilding and praying the restructure will hold. Still others are lost for every in the disasters and debris that come tumbling down.

Where are you in the midst of a storm? How do you survive it? What or who is your anchor? Without true security and a solid anchor that holds, a ship will be beaten and worn by the mighty winds. Without a firm foundation and support measures put in place, a house will surely fall when the grounds shake. Without a firm grip on Truth and love, the storms of life will only bring destruction and heartache to your very soul.

Yet, there is Hope. There is a better way to survive the storms of life that wreak havoc on the heart and mind. Jesus is the only Hope we need. His grace is sufficient for every storm. His mercy will survive through every disaster. His love will cover you and comfort you through whatever destruction might come.

If you don’t know Him today, why not talk to Him now? Why not reach out your hand to Him and let Him carry you through? He loves you and longs to cover you and shelter your heart today.

Looking for that Moment

I wouldn’t say I’m not a really bold person. Too often, I wish I were more bold, but my prayer lately has been for God to help me to see. “Open my eyes and let me see what and who You want me to see, and if you want me to speak, please, give me the courage, and I’ll speak. ” That’s been my prayer.

A few days ago, my husband and I walked onto a used car lot in town, met one of the salesmen, and he ended up sharing his story with us. He’s a retired South African pastor, living now in Georgia, and his wife is battling cancer for the second time. They’ve been married for 40 years, and he hopes and believes for 40 more; yet, when circumstances arise like this, it naturally brings doubts and fears. We stood right there in the parking lot and prayed for his wife’s healing.

Today, a lady showed up in our church foyer lost in her way to Florida. Mind you, our church is not just a step off the interstate; yet, her GPS had brought her down this street, and she stopped in for directions. She was on her way home to take care of her house before the possibility of Hurricane Irma sweeps in. I gave her directions and asked her if I could pray for her before she left. She said yes. We prayed; she cried, thanked me and went on her way. I have no idea if I’ll ever see her again, but I haven’t been able to get her off my mind all day. I pray she makes it home safely and that her home stays safe through the storm.

You never know who God will bring your way or why. The most important thing is to keep your eyes and hears open, ready and waiting for when He says, “Speak. Move. Tell them about Me.”

This is an older song, but it really puts “teeth” to what I’m trying to convey here. 😉 Hope you enjoy.

https://g.co/kgs/ubCQ8H

*This is a YouTube video. I do not have access to, nor do I own, this video.*

Storm Wisdom

Found this quote today, and I thought I'd share it. With the storms that have brewed and blown through in the states southwest of us, this just seemed appropriately placed. I hope you will be encouraged…

Knowing what to do when the storms of life blow in is essential to our survival. The storms are inevitable, and if you simply remain unprepared, believing they will never affect you, you will find yourself sadly disappointed and, possibly, even drowning in the floodwaters of the aftermath.

Lessons for the storm…
Sometimes, when the winds blow in and the rains threaten to overpower us, we have to simply adjust our sails and head a different way. Other times, heading straight into the storm will give us enough gust through the sails to carry us beyond the storm before it bellows in force. Sometimes, we may need to lower the sails, batten down the hatches and make a "bee line" for the shore. However, there are those few, rare occasions, we will even need to hold on tight and wait out the storm, because the safety of land is just too far to reach, and the storm has a lot of bravado but no real depth or harm. It blows in with a furry yet stops just short of any real threat.

If we are to survive through life's storms, we must develop the art of perseverance and a deep gratitude for the vessel in which we sail. When we have these two attributes as the foundation upon which we stand, we can face any storm that may come, because gratitude will always bring you to the wisdom of who you are and who you are not, and it will give you the ability to ask for help from the right people at the right time. Perseverance will give you the ability to withstand the battering of the winds and waves while still learning the skill it takes to get the boat to where it needs to be when it needs to get there.

Lastly, we need to know the Master of the winds and the waves. With Him by our side, we will not drown, no matter the depth of the sea, the force of the wind or the terror of the rains. He will guide us. He will comfort us, and He will protect us. He may not always remove us from the storm, but His hand will always be with us through the storm.

…I hope you might take some time to share with me your own perspective on this quote…