Monthly Archives: October 2014

To Boo or Not to Boo, That is The Question

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Nothing new here. This was originally posted last Fall. Just wanted to share with my new friends. Happy Halloween, y’all!

notmyownblog

Some of us need to agree to disagree, right outta the gate today.  There’s my disclaimer.

There’s a lot of debate among believers this time of year. Is it okay to recognize Halloween and participate in related activities? How can I show the love of Jesus and still keep Halloween fun for my kids?  How would Jesus approach Halloween?

Over the years, I’ve had this conversation with many a believer AND non-believer.  And let me just say, I’ve yet to win anyone to Christ by staunchly avoiding Halloween.  This is not that big of a deal, people. Realizing this, I am not seeking to persuade you to think like I do on the subject; I simply want to offer some food–or should I say candy–for thought.

Here’s how I operate. I love Fall. Like Lorelai Gilmore and Snow, Fall and I have a relationship. It’s not so…

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Music in My Head

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photo(3)I Love Music.  It gets stuck in my head and seeps its way to my heart.  It speaks to me like nothing else can and sometimes, when nothing else will.

I have two songs in my head this morning that have overwhelmingly struck me with two thoughts:  God’s faithfulness and my trust.

There is so much happening in the world today, even in my own friends’ and family’s lives.  But no matter what we are facing, dealing with or going through, as believers we all have one thing in common–God is with us.

Whether we’re high on the mountain or low in the valley, our God wants more of us, to be intimate with us.  He wants to lead us to That Place, wherever it is, where we truly trust in Him; not ourselves or our abilities or our plans, just Him.

He wants to lead us to That Place where our trust in Him is without borders, where He is allowed outside of the box we put Him in because He is Big and our box is not. 

He wants to take us higher and deeper than our own feet would ever dare take us, into His very presence.

That’s where He wants us–with Him.

One way or another, I know God will get me There.  What I don’t know is How.

How will I get to That Place?  Will I get to go by choice?  Peter willingly got out of the boat and walked on water toward Jesus.  Will I?  Or will I be forced out?  Will my boat capsize, forcing me into the depths of the Oceans, shouting for salvation; for a rescuer to pull me out and into the safety of his presence?

Though I do not know the How or When, I do know the Why and Who.

So my faith will be made stronger in the presence of my Savior.

God is Faithful.  He is Able.  He is Sure.  I can trust Him implicitly with my eternity AND with my life on this Monday morning.  My money.  My bills.  My marriage.  My kids.  My health.  He can handle it all.

Friends, God is constantly drawing us to Himself, passionately pursuing us.  He is relentless in His quest for our whole heart and He will not stop until He has it.  He loves us that much.

He will allow me to experience whatever it takes for me to finally get to That Place and back again, as I’m sure to wander.

Sometimes He will lead me to the Red Sea, to a dead end where He is my only Help.

He may take me to the top of the mountain where He is the only One who can send the fire.

He may call me out upon the water where He is the only One who can make me stand.

But no matter where He leads, I know I am not alone.  He is there in it all, wanting my attention–my heart--as a lover desires the affection of their beloved.  Surely “I am my Beloved’s and He is mine.”

I can trust Him and His intentions for me no matter what Place I’m standing in today.  Never once will He leave us on our own.

Take a second and listen to these songs.  Let the words steep and speak to that tender spot in your heart.

If you’re sinking, look up and shout His Name.

If you’re facing the Red Sea, raise your arms and expect a miracle.

If you’re on a mountain, whisper a prayer and wait for the fire.

You are faithful, God, You are faithful…

Jessie

“Then The Lord came down in the cloud and stood there WITH him and proclaimed His Name, The Lord.  And He passed in front of Moses, proclaiming, ‘The Lord, The Lord, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness…'” ~ Exodus 34:5-6

Click Here to listen to “Oceans” by Hillsong United.

Click Here to listen to “Never Once” by Matt Redman

Laundry Day

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“Cleanse me with hyssop, and I will be clean; wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.”  Psalm 51:7

Sooooo, this is a blog about Real Life because, well, I live a very real life.

As the COO of our family, I’m charged with The Dirty Work of running a home.  I do dishes and laundry Every.Single.Day.  In fact, I am currently surrounded by exactly 5 loads of laundry—and I did 4 loads yesterday.

A few minutes ago my washer did the Out-of-Balance Two-Step. You know the dance it does when the load gets off balance?

The entire machine wobbled and shimmied across the floor, making a loud, hard to ignore racket. To make it stop, I opened up the lid and rearranged the load. And then I had a thought…

Sometimes, that’s me.

In an attempt to Do It All, I often overload my calendar. In no time my priorities get out of balance and I begin to wobble and shimmy through everything. I make a lot of racket and my head and home feel like they’re in a spin cycle.

I get lost in The Wash and forget to soak in the goodness of it all. I am agitated by the little things and treat my delicate loved-ones roughly.

My load is heavy and I become hard pressed by it all. I forget this cycle won’t last forever; that before I know it, everything will be rinsed and a new fresh life cycle will begin.

It is so hard to stay balanced.  How do I keep my basket from getting too full?

First, I have to air out my dirty laundry before The Lord. I must confess that I’ve stretched myself too thin and I, in fact, cannot Do It All.

When I do this, He promises to “wash away all iniquity and cleanse me from my sin,” leaving me “whiter than snow.”  He gives me “a clean heart” and “[renews] a steadfast spirit within me” so I can sort through all The Piles I’m faced with (Psalm 51:2,7,10)

Then, just like my daily wash routine, I have to refresh my mind with His word daily.  His presence softens my spirit and His gentle touch restores my soul. (Hebrews 10:22)

I also have to open up and allow Him to rearrange my load, maybe even take some things out and make it lighter. That means I let go of things. I handle my time with care by graciously saying No to overload.

Ultimately, I know I can trust The Lord to make my path straight and iron out all the details.

He’s the one who knit me together in the first place.

Jessie

“Let us draw near to God with a sincere heart and with the full assurance that faith brings, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water.”

~ Hebrews 10:22