Friends

….Though it’s hard to let you go, in the Father’s hands I know, that a lifetime’s not too long to live as friends.

Because of unforseen circumstances, this is my last blog.  I also will no longer be able to keep up with the blogs I follow which breaks my heart even more.  There are a few of you who are dear to me and have been affirming and encouraging.  I value your touch on my life more than you will ever know.  I look forward to meeting you in person one day in Heaven.  For now, this chapter is closed.  I will not bore you with the details but leave it to speculation for this is what we love to do, speculate about someone else’s life instead of examining our own.  I am not saying that is true of all of you but those that do, know who they are.  I will miss you, but until God restores my voice, I will remain silent and move on to productivity.  Be well my friends.  I will miss sharing bits of your lives and a peek into your world.  One thing I will never cease doing is praying for you as God brings you to remembrance!

 

Touching People Where They Are

We approached a young woman and sensed the Lord wanted her to know that ” He sees, hears and is there for her.” Those simple words released God’s love upon her and burden off of her, as she burst out in tears! She proceeded to tell us that she found out she was pregnant out of wedlock, feeling horribly guilty and pressured by her boyfriend to abort the baby. Over the next 30 minutes she proceeded to experience more of God then she’d ever known, repented, received forgiveness, and forgave her boyfriend. She also heard the Lord speak to her heart and ask her to keep the baby to full-term. We also gave her several referrals. To top it off, we had a name tag sitting on the table that was not being used and it had her name on it! Literally filled with peace and JOY she walked back to work.

Dark Clouds

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I am way too over tired these past two days that I know my emotions are lying on the surface.  It is then that the enemy attacks.  Someone shared something with me that on one hand should not cause much of a reaction at all, but I find myself dwelling there and I cannot seem to shake it.  It was a “rejection” of something dear to my heart and something that has brought much freedom to me.  I really don’t know why I am letting it bother me, because in the big scheme of things, it should be a non issue and more of a reflection on where this person is in their relationship to the Lord.  After telling my husband that I was not going to take it personally, I find that I am.  Whether it is due to being over-tired (my excuse) or not, I can not seem to shake this thing.  I have employed taking my thoughts captive, thinking on those things that are of good report, praying, asking for His Grace to help me, meditating on scripture, walking through forgiveness, and repentance for how I am reacting, etc.  I still cannot let it go.  Here is what my devotions said today in My Utmost For His Highest by Oswald Chambers :  Rev. 1:7 “Behold He cometh with clouds”

Notice it does not say He comes in the clouds, but with clouds.  I never saw that before.  Here is what He says:

“Clouds are always connected with God.  It is by those very clouds that the Spirit of God is teaching us how to walk by faith.”

“God cannot come near without clouds, He does not come in clear shining.”

“It is not true to say that God wants to teach us something in our trials;  through every cloud He brings, He wants us to unlearn something.” 

God has been having me “unlearn” many things.  Somethings were taught in my upbringing like: prejudice, self-righteousness, pride, judgment.  Somethings I am “unlearning” were taught to me in church, but they are not the correct interpretation of His Word.

I think what He is trying to teach me to unlearn today is oversensitivity.  I need thicker skin if I am to survive in ministry, but I can declare I have it all I want, but I really don’t.  Things bother me.  People bother me. Sin bothers me.  Hatred bothers me.  Ridicule and accusation bother me.  I do not know how to unlearn these things.

Oswald goes on to say:

His purpose in the cloud is to simplify our belief until our relationship to Him is exactly that of a child-God, and my own soul, other people are shadows.  Until other people become shadows, clouds an darkness will be mine every now and again.”

There is a connection between the strange providence of God and what we know of Him, and we have to learn to interpret the mysteries of life in the light of our knowledge of God.  Unless we can look the darkest, blackest fact full in the face without damaging God’s character, we do not yet know Him.”

“Is there anyone ‘save Jesus only’ in your cloud?  If so, it will get darker;  you must get to the place where there is ‘no one any more save Jesus only’.” 

I find this comforting in one sense because Jesus is in this “cloud” with me, but I don’t yet know how to make those who come against me to be nothing but a “shadow”.  How do you unlearn an emotional response to rejection.  On one hand I count it all joy to be persecuted for my faith, but on the other hand I experience loss and grief.

Maybe all I need is a good cry and a really, really good nights sleep, but I am definitely battling something bigger than myself here, so I covet your prayers.  

God, I need you to be my Mighty Fortress and my Defender and Protector today.  Your child is weak, but not crushed.  Persecuted but not abandoned.  Pressed down, but not destroyed.  This battle is yours!

I Had to Laugh!

 

Several days ago as I left a meeting at a hotel; I desperately gave myself a personal TSA pat down. 
I was looking for my keys. They were not in my pockets. 
A quick search in the meeting room revealed nothing. 
Suddenly I realized I must have left them in the car. Frantically, I headed for the parking lot. 
My wife has scolded me many times for leaving the keys in the ignition. 
My theory is the ignition is the best place not to lose them. 

Her theory is that the car will be stolen. 
As I burst through the door, I came to a terrifying conclusion. Her theory was right. 
The parking lot was empty. 
I immediately called the police. I gave them my location, confessed that I had left my keys in the car, 
And that it had been stolen. 
Then I made the most difficult call of all . “Hi, honey,” I stammered . 
( I always call her “honey” in times like these) “I love you.” 
“I left my keys in the car and it’s been stolen.” 
There was a period of silence. I thought the call had been dropped, but then I heard her voice. 
“Are you kidding me ! , she barked , “I dropped you off !!!!!!! ” 
Now it was my time to be silent. Embarrassed, I said, “Well, come and get me.” 
She retorted, “I will, as soon as I convince this cop I didn’t steal your car.” 
Yep it’s the golden years………

st humor I had to share:

 

Busy, Busy, Busy!

Time to leave the clouds and blogging for the next few weeks to attend to some very practical life situations.  I have some company for a few days, need to enroll my girls in public school for the very first time.  I need to get them the required colored clothing the school requires as a uniform.  Then it is off to Michigan to welcome home a niece who has been in Africa for the summer, to visit my sisters whom I have not seen in quite awhile.  My family will be enjoying  a week at my sister’s who lives on a lake and I think it is what this family needs before the girls start their school adventure August 19, and I prepare to go back to work, as well as strategize with my husband for this next year of ministry.  This time in the clouds has been good, but now it’s time to put some feet to what He has been teaching me in practical ways with my husband, my children, and our church.

I hope to be able to catch up with everyone toward the end of August as I value highly the connections I have made here.  I may get a chance to blog here and there, and then again I may not. I just do not want to feel the pressure to write “something”.

I am looking forward to what this next year holds for our family and our church.  Who said life was not an adventure!   Looking forward to getting back to some kind of routine after Labor Day.   Enjoy the rest of your summer!