Monday, October 5, 2015

Falling In Bed - Time to Get Well

How do moms make it unless they first go to the source to be filled? Mary indulged and sat at the feet of Jesus, but did she really indulge? No, Jesus said, "but only one thing is necessary, for Mary has chosen the good part, which shall not be taken away from her" (Luke 10:42). And how often do we function choosing what we think is the extra or the best, but not the necessary? 

During the Summer when I have a little more time, I indulge in extra “necessary” times with God. I sneak away early in the morning and have prayer time before all the day starts because there is no real starting time to the day and I feast on basking in His presence like I really have nothing else to do. 

But then the schedules start, the meetings come and assignments build up. I find myself eating on the run and praying throughout the day but miss out on those long steady times of laying before God like I have nothing else in the world to do. Can you relate at all?

God says that there is a season for everything in Ecclesiastes 3:

There is an appointed time for everything. And there is a time for every event under heaven—
      2A time to give birth and a time to die;
            A time to plant and a time to uproot what is planted.
      3A time to kill and a time to heal;
            A time to tear down and a time to build up.
      4A time to weep and a time to laugh;
            A time to mourn and a time to dance.
This past weekend I have been allowing myself the time to heal. I told my daughter on Wednesday I felt like a jelly donut that had all of its sweet gooey stuff inside squirted out and by Friday I was exhausted. I pushed through a conference that I delighted in on the first day and lively energized myself on pure social contact with other adult humans but by the end I didn’t know if I could drive myself home. And by the time I made it home, I stayed in bed for two days trying to recover. (I knew I should not have cleaned that bathroom out on Wednesday without prepping myself with allergy meds--how do I so easily forget?).

I am tired of coughing at night, and struggling to think about what best home remedy I need to prepare for each symptom. (My husband did not so much like the onion juice in the ear I used last night; I recall with a smile.) I don’t want medication. I want to use oils and nature to heal my own body but then I start to think do I have the time to indulge in home remedies. If only the drainage would stop, but I just don’t feel like looking up what to do. Can someone simply come to my home and “natural medicine” me like a mom would for her sick child?

So, finally, I turn my thoughts to the ONE who loves me, “Papa, help me, heal me, educate me, strengthen me.” You caught that, didn’t you? “Finally” not initially. Why are we so consistently like this? Why do we see His natural methods but forget to seek HIM first? Forgive me, Father.

And His grace thankfully is always sufficient and never an empty cup. He is able to pour into me whenever I take the time to ask. I am sure He waits beside me, longing for me, to finally ask. Oh, when will I ever choose what is “necessary" all of the time and never hesitate or wait? Waiting to go to THE doctor. Waiting to go to the sustainer. Waiting to go to the healer. Waiting to go to the lover of my soul. What am I waiting for?

O LORD my God, I cried to You for help, and You healed me. Psalm 30:2

The healing started with my soul the moment I asked.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Who is in Control? Promoters Bring Girls Into NYC Nightlife

I have been alive half a century, decades of living, making choices day by day.

I understand certainly that we all individually determine how we will live. I have made my choice. My children, friends, and relatives are making theirs.

But I am always learning something new and sometimes it is not a topic I want to know about. Like everyone else, I am being exposed to culture, or lack thereof.

So, until this past Sunday, I had never heard of a person being able to work for a promoter to hang out in NYC VIP clubs in so that men will pay $350 simply to enter these clubs. They do this because they hope to get a chance to “hook-up” with “beautiful” women. The females who work for promoters get money, free drinks, free food and to enjoy the night. The promoters get paid per female they bring into the club.

It breaks my heart that a young lady would willingly work in this NYC nightlife. So often we hear of people forcefully pimping other people into services like sex slaves, prostitutes or escort, but to know that a person has a choice, and chooses to live this way of life is beyond my comprehension. Yet, it is a lifestyle choice some people willingly make. 

Writing is the way I process, thoughts come to me and my fingers begin to move either along the keys or moving the pen. This is what I composed thinking about women who choose to party as a promoter girl:

Curves of metal pressed by machines stand as a guard to protect massive amounts of metallic moving vehicles from dropping off the mountain cliff. In life, where are our human guardrails? God places them all around, giving us proper boundaries but we push against them or even leap over to revel in what we imagine is more—more freedom—more living—more excitement. We are “spiritual” but choose not to believe in God, Satan, heaven or hell. Our definition of life is void of such archaic things. And by declaration, we make it so.

We don’t want anything pleasurable to be withheld, so we jump down into the pits, celebrating that we are among the few who are brave enough to live life to its fullest, not realizing we have sunken into miry decadence. And awakening from the parties, booze and hook-ups we wonder –why is life so empty? Why can’t we stay full? Our own voice echoes off the walls of the world we have chosen, not fathoming that we are imprisoned in a place we cannot easily escape.

Each step, each night, each dance, we proclaim its our freewill choice, not recognizing we are being used, exploited, exposed for others gain. And it feels good to be wanted, adored, and selected as a "very important person". We think we are in control but we are being played. Decorations in the flashy nightlife scene, pretending to be available, a possibility, or a potential date.

We don’t need it, we have our own means, but in a twisted way the power of our allure, the glamor of being promoted, we convince ourselves that we are the ones fulfilling own desires, being paid to get everything free. What a life! What a death to one’s soul! Expensive trinket we are roleplaying the fancy clothes, purses and stiletto heals were have adorn all our young lives. And like the latest fashion accessories we will eventually succumb to being tossed aside for next years trend. Yet while we can, while we are still hot, we tell ourselves that we are having the time of our lives.

Metal bars erect themselves in our psyche; they keep us in place, girls on display served up at tables like delectable selections upon sterling platters to the men with deep pockets and bankrupt souls. An image to keep--we all pretend that this sexual fantasy scene is real. A mirage no less visible than an oasis to the thirsting desert crawler hoping for a sip of real satisfying water to quench his greatest need: love, acceptance, and a stroke of self-esteem.

In this fast-moving world we agree to participate because nothing else can make us feel, left numb by a life we once tried to live but found too painful. No more being ripped apart in the heart, we delight to do the ripping, living out our wildest dreams among the world’s biggest players. We are kings and queens being moved about as pawns –willingly—all for the owner’s greed. In the end we make him rich in the commodity of human souls.

Monday, June 1, 2015

I Am Against You - Words I Do Not Want to Hear - The Book of Nahum

I love to hear from God, but "Behold, I am against thee," said the Lord of Hosts" (Nahum 2:13 and Nahum 3:5) is one thing I do not want to ever hear God say to me. BECAUSE that means you are in trouble!

Photo Credit: Destroy by Unessential DeviantART

I have written another post about the Old Testament Book of Nahum and the news was not good for Nineveh. God opened "the gates of the rivers" (Nahum 2:6) to tear down the fortified 100 foot tall wide wall of this city and make it vulnerable to be destroyed by its enemy. The moral to this story is no matter what man makes to protect his Nation, city or property when God is against them, they will fall. People don't like to hear this. They like to think God does not punish people or a nation in this way but the Bible teaches differently, "the Lord has his way in the whirlwind and in the storm, and the clouds are the dust of hid feet. He rebukes the sea and makes it dry and dries up all the rivers...the mountains quake at Him and the hills melt..." (Nahum 1:3-6).

It is clear that God uses His control over nature to show His power and revenge against his enemy.

Thankfully, because of my relationship with Jesus, his righteousness covers me, and therefore, God will never be against me. When God sees me, He sees me in my completion. He doesn't see my sin, my guilt and my shortcomings. Because of Jesus, I am no long an enemy of God. This is true for anyone who has accepted Jesus as LORD and Savior of their life, but do not take comfort in a false salvation. If you are truly God's child you will OBEY God and be HUNGRY for time with Him and love to worship Him and want to serve Him all the days of your life.

Nineveh had forsaken God's grace and forgotten his love. They were known as the "bloody city!" (Nahum 3:1).

When I think of abortion and the amount of innocent babies that have been murdered, America definitely can be known as the BLOODY NATION. We have sinned greatly against God by allowing abortion at will to take place for so long for any reason and no reason. Here me clearly: when the life of the mother or child is in height of concern NO ONE has the right to step into this private doctor-patient decision, but NEVER should a baby be aborted simply because it is not the right time, not wanted or unplanned. Even children born into unhealthy abusive home deserve the right to life - for I would not be alive today if this was followed.

I am ever so thankful to God that people are awakening to this bloody sin and limits are beginning. And for those who say Christians need to be out of politics and lawmaking this is how they are so wrong. We need to be engaged and involved to do good and to help implement safe, honoring laws.

We today personally and Nationally need to heed the warnings of the book of Nahum. In our Nation sin is glorified and embraced. Sin is even taught as right and the goodness and truth of God's Holy Word is taught to be wrong.

Photo Credit: Who to Look To by tsartwork DeviantART

Still I have great hope, because God is so faithful, forgiving and gracious. He hears the prayers of His children and He will answer our prayers. America is blessed as many Nations are to have a strong "believing" community that will shield the Nation for complete destruction. Nineveh was not so! As was not Sodom and Gomorrah.

God IS against SIN, and those who have chosen to give themselves over completely to sin and to reject Jesus. And there will be a price to pay, death! Eternal death!

At the end of Nahum, this book of the Bible, ends very differently from most prophetic books. Most books show the redemption of God and end with great hope for those who press in toward God and who turn from their wickedness, but not in Nahum:

"There is no remedy for your injury; your wound is severe. All who hear the news about you will clap their hands because of you, for who has not experienced your constant cruelty?" Nahum 3:19

Could this be God word to ISIS and the Islamist who are murdering, raping and pilfering cities that do not belong to them? God sees! God will repay their sins with judgement. As in all of the Bible we know this to be a fact, we are to love and forgive, but God will lay out His vengeance on those who do the work of Satan killing, stealing and destroying. God is in control. It may seem for a season that the enemy of God is winning, that Satan is gaining a victory, but his false glory and gain is short-lived.

Photo Credit: Redsarine DeviantART

Hold on Child of God, Revelation ends with this glorious reminder, "Jesus who testifies about these things says, "Yes, I am coming quickly!" (Rev 22:20)

So in all things we have this reason to rejoice! And our response is in Revelation 22:20 "Amen! Come, Lord Jesus!"

Monday, May 25, 2015

How Can It Be? That Josh Duggar Could Be Forgiven

Is anyone listening? I have some good news.

Even people who sin by sexually molesting another person can be forgiven.

Photo Credit: phototubby at DeviantART


Because this is the very reason Jesus left his home in heaven, was born, and came to earth as a man. He lived a sinless life, died for ALL sins, took the punishment/penalty of ALL sins, was forsaken by God, descended into hell and with the power of the Holy Spirit he rose. He broke the chains and power of sins, death and hell.

He not only took on our sin, but he bore our shame. He rose to live and defeated the grave. This is so hard for the world to believe. People living in the world, who do not know who Jesus really is, have never known a love like this.

But this love is real. Jesus is real. His love for us is real, and available for anyone who accepts Jesus' sacrifice for his own sin.

So what does this have to do with the life story of Josh Duggar, his family and Christians? Everything!


We are all capable of evil. Especially when God is absent in our life. The more distance we have from God the more capable we are of committing evil acts. Like Einstein explained, cold is the absence of heat, evil is the absence of GOD--because God is all good, and everything that is good is from God.

Obama became infamous for saying, "You didn't build that!" Well, he was right. Whether we give God credit or not, anything we do that is good is not because of us but because of God. He gives talents, abilities, wealth, health, strength, etc.

What is amazing is Jesus came to earth and died for us knowing how horrible we were, knowing what horrible things we would do. If and when we are forgiven of all of our past, present and future sins that we commit against God and all other people, we finally ask in amazement, "How can it be that God would do this for me?

I have heard lots of comments hurled toward Josh Duggar, his family and Christians, in general.

Photo Credit: Andy Mumford at DeviantART


I am startled at how far we have come and how little people know about God and his Word. Christians have been responding "He who has never sinned cast the first stone." And ignorant of God's Word, people claim, "I have never raped or molested a person, so I will throw the first stone." People honestly do not know what sin is anymore. During Jesus time, every man living in the city of the adulterous woman understood he was a sinner and one by one dropped the stones, but today we would actually have a crowd a people stoning Josh Duggar.

People, many who have probably been sexually violated or know someone who has, are revolted that a sexual molester could be forgiven. They don't want him to get away with what he has done; they don't think he can be repentant and changed to not be a lifelong sexual predator. They want his children taken away from him. They want him destroyed.

I totally understand their thinking.

In my twenties I was remembering and holding onto to all the abuse that happen to me and my siblings which included sexual rape. I declared I was not going forget until the guilty paid for what they did. I thought I was doing a good thing by remembering. I didn't know how much I was damaging my own soul and dragging the abuser around with me everywhere I went like a ball on a chain.


A wise pastor asked me a question, "Who sinned more: your own father against you OR you against your heavenly father, God?" Everyone could ask themselves this question. Who has sinned more that person who has abused/violated you OR your personal sins against God for your entire life (and on into the future for the rest of your life)?

I knew the answer the pastor wanted to hear but in my gut I did not believe it. I was abused for 18 years; I was tortured, tormented, threatened, and damaged in every way imaginable, almost everyday of my life. If abuse was not happening to me it was happening to a sibling or my mother. HOW IS IT POSSIBLE? How could I be a greater sinner than my abusing father?

But the question was very specific, "Who sinned more: your own father against you (every single sin he ever committed against me personally) or my own sins for my entire life (since every sin committed is against God)?"

I went home and knelt beside my sofa and asked God to show me my sin. I was quiet and listened. God answered my prayer. Over and over, on and on, minute by minute, the mental reel of my sins began rolling before me. After an hour or so, I was weeping for God to stop showing me. I clearly saw what a sinner I was. Yes, my father had done some horrible things to me but in comparison to the quantity of sins I had committed against God up until I was in my late twenties did not even come close to my father's sins against me. I was clearly the greater sinner. I pleaded for God to forgive me.

Forgiveness and Freedom

And HE did! He forgave me of everything. He wiped all of my sins away. I was no longer guilty. I was free. I was forgiven. The chains of sin were broken. HOW CAN IT BE? God was willing to forgive me over and over, again and again. He loves me unconditionally and I can never out-sin God's ability to forgive.

So how could Josh Duggar possibly go on with life? How could he forgive himself? How could his sisters and the family friend's whose girls had been hurt forgive him? Don't miss the fact that a person must not only ask God to forgive them and to forgive others, but they must also forgive themselves. If God forgives, who are we to put ourselves above God, making ourselves out to be a god by not forgiving ourselves.

The answer is Jesus. Jesus did it all. Jesus makes it possible.

And I can hear the crowds cry out, "It's not fair! It's too easy. Punish HIM. Crucify Him. Don't forgive. Don't forget. He must pay."

Everyone will be held accountable by God. No one who sins gets away with it. Either the person asks God to forgive them by the fact that Jesus died on the cross for their sins, they repent and turn from the sin and deal with the consequences (some natural, some given by authorities) AND live their life for Jesus OR they will have to pay for the penalty of their sins at death with their life and live eternally separated from God in a place called hell (tortured and tormented for eternity). We are all answerable to God for our own sins.

Legalist, Hypocrites and Pseudo-Christians

Other people are crying out because they claim that Josh was raised too strict, as a legalist (following rules of religion), too sheltered, sexually repressed, and then he was out-spoken about others sinning. They claim that because Josh's family raised their children to not be sexually active it was the reason he molested the girls. They reason it has to be because they did not allow him to masterbate or watch sexual media he acted out against this strict upbringing. They claim since some of the adults associated with his family are known to be predators they could not possibly have given him good counsel or taken his actions seriously. They are furious that since he molested little girls when he was a young boy of 13 (barely a teenager) that he has no right to talk about what sin is, to claim that homosexual behavior and molestation/rape is wrong. They believe he should be disqualified for life from talking about sexual sin. Many even say his own children should be taken from him, that what he did as a young boy disqualifies him from being a good father and husband. 

They say all of this because they do not know GOD. They don't know the power of God to redeem what is destroyed, to restore what as stolen. They don't know that God can heal any hurt, take away any sin, keep people from sinning and restore relationships. I do not know Josh Duggar and I do not know the condition of his heart. I do not know the girls that were hurt and the condition of their heart, BUT I do KNOW God. He is able, willing and all-powerful. He is Jehovah-Rapha, The God Who Heals. God knows the heart and conditions of those involved in the Josh Duggar situation. He is Jehovah-El Roi, The God Who Sees.

The fact is Josh Duggar was targeted because he claims to be a Christian and is outspoken against Lesbians, Gays, Bisexuals and Transgenders. He has put a target on his back, and Satan exposed Josh's sins of his boyhood to silence him and destroy him and his family. 

Being a legalist is not what God wants. He wants us to have a real relationship with Him, not to have us following a bunch of rules hoping by doing so to gain his favor and acceptance to heaven (it can't be done; it is not God's way). Being a hypocrite is not what God wants. Jesus spoke the harshest to hypocrites of his time that happen to be religious leaders who were legalist following their own manmade rules instead of God commandments in the Bible. Being a pseudo-Christian is not what God wants, and America has way too many false Christians. People who claim the name of Christian but who do not live the life of being a follower of Jesus. Jesus LOVED the sinner, but hated the sin, therefore, we are to love the sinners and hate the sins.

Photo Credit: Mindasr at DevientART

WHAT does God Want?

So I have listed everything that God does not want. What does he want? 

He wants to love us. He wants a relationship with you and me. He wants us to talk to Him and to know Him. We do this by praying, listening and reading the Bible. He wants us to watch out and guard our own heart against temptations to sin. Each of us are tempted by our own version of sin. We have to set up boundaries in life to keep ourselves from falling into sin. He wants us to depend on Him, to trust Him and to yield our will to His desires. He wants us to believe that He has a good plan for our life and we simply need to obey Him. He wants us to be filled up with the Holy Spirit to be able to walk by faith and not by sight.

Of course, this is much easier stated then done. It takes great discipline and being still before God allowing Him to fill us up with His supernatural power to live strong spiritual lives instead of acting out on our fleshly pleasure-filled wants. This is how "spiritual leaders" get tripped up; they start believing that they built their church and their organization; they soak up the adoration of followers and live lofty lives instead of adoring God and taking care of the poor and needy.

So, How can it be? How can Josh or anyone like him be forgiven? God sent His son Jesus to live and die for our sin; He caused Him to rise again. Jesus lives and is ready, wanting us to forgive us and love us.

If you want to know more about God, you might enjoy this article post on Real Hope or I Choose to Forgive or Show Me My Sin or Is There Someone You need to Forgive?

Monday, May 18, 2015

A Mother's Prayer for Her Unbelieving Child - Psalm 91

Psalm 91 is an amazing chapter in the Bible.

Photo Credit: VandelRus DeviantART
This psalm can be used for so many circumstances in life as a prayer to God for help. I am going to convert the words of this psalm into a prayer for a unbelieving child. In my mother's heart, I am praying this for my son. It is painful to witness a child who choses the wide, sinful road when he has been brought up in Biblical training to know and love God. But the Bible teaches that the good news of Jesus does not alway fall on the soil of a soul that is willing to let it take root and grow. As a mother I hold dear to many promises, that God's Word does not go void.

I am praying this Psalm for my son. If you need to pray for your child, join me in agreement in prayer for our wayward children.

Father God,

You say that he that dwells in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. I pray for my son that he may learn to see you as his place of safety and rest where his soul can securely dwell. May he come to know you as His Most High God and take pleasure in the comfort under your Almighty shadow.

As his mother I pray over him this Psalm, as a cover over him, "Be his refuge and his fortress, dear God; become Him who he will trust." 

In his unbelief, he choses not to trust in you but I pray that you will find ways to show yourself to him. Help him to see that YOU alone are is his refuge, his fortress in whom he should trust. I long for the day that he cries out to you "My God!" and today and everyday forward I praise you for bringing him to you, and answering my prayer.

Surely Lord you shall deliver him from the snare of the fowler and the noisome pestilence. As my son is foolishly choosing to disregard the caution we taught him as a child, in your mercy protect him from himself, but allow him to suffer the consequences that will bring him to the end of himself. When you deem appropriate cover him with your feathers that under your wings he shall learn to trust you. I pray that your truth will become his shield and wrap around him your Holy Word as His protection. Oh, for the day that he loves your Word and knows it as truth!

As my son chooses to walk into the terror of the night and the arrows that fly by him each day, I pray that he remembers that in You he does not need to ever be afraid. For the pestilence that walks in darkness and the destruction that waits for him at noonday, may he be protected according to your wisdom because you alone know what he must endure before he will turn to you. I also ask that you keep him from harming other dear souls that you love so much, protect those who in his selfishness that he is willing to use and take advantage of.

Photo Credit: Roots of Love by Escaped Emotions DeviantART

I pray that as 1,000 fall by his side and 10,000 at his right hand, you will not let this unnecessary harm come near him. Open his eyes that he can behold and see the reward of the wicked and may this cause him to wake up and turn to you. Also, in his ignorance and naivety keep him from following people who walk in wickedness. Help him to see the true motives of people he currently esteems as friends. Bring him to his point of need and spare his life that one day he may serve you with all of his heart for your eternal kingdom work.

When we make you our Lord, you are our refuge, the Most High, our habitation. I rejoice looking forward to the day that my son calls you Lord and allows you to be his habitation. Because in you, no evil shall fall on him and neither shall any plague come near where he lives. Have mercy on him, during these wanton days of his life. As I pray over him, shield him from evil and plagues that the enemy of his soul has planned for him to experience. I ask that no weapon formed against him shall prevail.

Give your angels charge over him, to direct him into your ways. Allow them to bear him up that in his folly he will not be dashed against a stone. Give Angels the ability to protect him supernaturally from the dangers desired by the enemy of his soul.

As the demons like a lion roam seeking whom they can devour and the adder seeks one whom they can lie to, I pray that you will shield him from the enemy who is targeting him. May he learn that it is by you he will be able to trample under foot, the young lion and the dragon.

Oh, God, it is my heart cry that my son will set his love upon you and that you will deliver him from himself and his wrong, wicked choices, that you will be able to set my son on high because he knows your name calls upon you as the one he loves.

I praise you and thank you God for I know the day is coming that my son shall call upon you and you will answer him. You will be with him in time of trouble, and you will deliver him and honor him. May my son have a long life satisfied by you alone. Show him your salvation. Speak to him through people, in dreams, experiences and ways I could not even fathom but you in your wisdom and loving creativity will set forth and bring to pass.

Of course, in my mother's heart, I want his salvation to come quickly, but as your maid-servant I say "not my will, but yours" trusting that your timing is perfect.

Thank you Lord for hearing my prayer, and thank you for all the saints who are joining me in agreement in this salvation prayer for my son.

I thank you for your word. I that can pray it back to you in behalf of my son knowing it is your perfect will and therefore you will hear my prayer and it will please you to answer it. I love you Lord.

In the name of Jesus and by the blood of Jesus I pray.

Monday, May 11, 2015

Are You a Human Punching Bag or Do you Throw the Punches?

Let me begin by saying you should never allow yourself to be a human punching bag, either physically, emotionally or verbally. We should treat ourselves with dignity and expect others to treat us kindly also.

Photo Credit: Punched by Dreaminit DeviantArt

I have three different blogs. Sometimes I have a hard time figuring out which one I should post an article. Although most of the time I do not since each serves a unique purpose. This is my life blog. It is general and is about what I experience or learn as I walk through what I long ago called "womanhood".  In another one of my blogs I only write articles/posts that are about PTSD/Abuse/Trauma and healing from severe child abuse that I lived through for 18 years and many adult years after. And a final one is the one I like to call raw; it is a rambling of thoughts or inner feelings that are not well filtered; it is purposely a view behind the inner veil, my naked self at some of my most vulnerable moments.

I am in the process of working on my personal website to have a place to combine the location for these three and to add a few other things. This past Sunday my Pastor that I dearly love made a comment about people who have their own personal website; he was speaking of pastors in specific who use them to bring attention to themselves or possibly glory instead of it going to God. For a moment it made me question whether I should have a website with my own name on it; I say for a moment because I know God created me to be a writer; Words run through me as the blood pumps through my veins; if I had no way to communicate my head would probably explode with all the ideas running through it. Writing has often been my lifeline. In my weakest moments I write. But it is also my strength. In my best moments I write as I reflect on what God is doing or has done.

Some people are born speakers, musicians, artist, designers, etc. for me I am a writer. I do think if I was a man I would strongly want to be a preacher. I would love to give a sermon every Sunday. It is so exciting to read God's Word to grow with Him and learn as much as you can about what He says and then to share that with people. I truly believe God gave the office of Pastor to men, that doesn't mean a woman can't teach or speak to the church, even in a Sunday service. It does mean that as the husband should be the head of the household loving his wife as Jesus loves the church, that the Pastor of the church should be a man representative loving the body of his church. God does gender; He has roles for males, females and children.

Photo Credit: The Fight by Snapshotsequence DeviantART

I was recently told this:
You like.most self.proclaimed Christians are some of the most judgmental, condescending and shallow individuals I have ever known. Disrespectful to call yourself a follower of Christ. You embody none of His faith, mercy, love, grace nor consideration, especially for those who know what you have allowed and turned your back on in this lifetime. Cast your stones. I don't chose to have your dysfunctional and depressing relationship as part of my life. Find your peace but I won't be your punching bag.
It is not the first time and I am quite sure it will not be the last that I will be accused in such a way by a person. Of course I allow this to be filtered through by God, His Word and faith. Thankfully, I know that because I am a follower of Jesus I am a work in progress, not perfected or completed. I rest in this truth regularly. Certainly, I am many times not a good model of Jesus. I need ever so desperately to learn to speak truth in mercy and love. I get in more trouble than most, though, because I do speak the truth. It is hard for me to bite my tongue when a glaring lie or hypocrisy is being spoken or taking place before my eyes.

When words are filtered in by God's grace, we can learn. As my Pastor also said this weekend we can take in what we need or what is truth and throw the bones out.

For anyone who has ever felt that I treated you like a punching bag, I am sorry. I do know that I have times when I have trouble letting things go or being left unsaid. I need to grow in letting God be the gatekeeper of my mouth and to be SLOW to speak. You might think this is funny but I have literally applied duck tape over my mouth so I would not response in a negative way or in anyway to one of my children when he/she was speaking; it solved the deep urge to speak or reply. I think I mumbled under the tape.

If it was not for Grace, I would have been cast out of God's kingdom long ago. I am so thankful that God is the one that accepts us as a Christ follower and He even keeps us. 

It may not seem like it but I am sealed by the Holy Spirit; He amazingly lives within me; I am a temple of God. So I am grateful when less of "lindy" shines through and more of God is able to touch people's lives. The Bible does teach "less of me and more of him" though I think we often enjoy "more of me and less of him;" interestingly, I am trying to embrace more of him and more of "me" as God created me to be. Each of us are unique and purposely created to be a glorious example of His divine image.

More times than I like to remember, I have been cast aside as a dysfunction part of someone's life. 

It is good to not allow someone to treat you as a human punching bag. So I accept this fate, losing people, as part of life now. It used to sting more but after happening so many times the pain of loss is dull. (that sounds so uncaring) Yet, interestingly almost all of the people who cut me off for a season, have become a part of my life again. The relationship is not the same but there is a mutual love and deeper appreciation of one another. The daily or weekly sharing and kindred close following of our inner lives has been lost; trust is a hard thing to re-establish; still, we do love and are thankful for each other in a different permanent way. Of course, several people have cast me off and never glanced back but the truth of those relationships is that there really was not one in the first place; we never made it to friendship.

Photo Credit: by Shinoki DeviantArt

Relationships are fragile unless you have a commitment, a vow, like I do with my precious husband of 31 years. I am very grateful for God giving me a life-mate that would not include the "d-word" (divorce) in his vocabulary. He truly did marry me for better or worse, richer or poorer, until death we do part. That is an unconditional gift of love from one person to another because as people we are fumbling around trying to do the best we can with the life we have been given.

Thank you for listening.

Allow yourself to be cherished. Let those who mistreat you walk away or if necessary you be the one to walk away and shut the door. God wants us to love others and we can't do this if we are being torn down or picked apart on a regular basis. We need to let God fill us up with His love and acceptance and don't look at releasing painful relationships as something bad. It is good for the season until the other person grows in grace. And of course, you will grow also.

Monday, May 4, 2015

Daily Prayer - Reading and Writing with the Bible

For me, daily prayer takes a lot of energy to be still and know that He is God. I do not think I am alone, but that does not make it better. I am easily distracted like a butterfly I flitter from on thought to the next. I see something dazzle or that looks interesting and I am drawn.

Photo Credit: Glimmer by Goldomega on DeviantArt

Since I love to read and write, I find focusing on Scripture so much easier when I have a pen and journal or my laptop open to write down what I am thinking and learning. I could read like this for hours and get totally lost in the experience.

Yet, it is not the same think as experiencing a relationship with God.

That hard, bold fact pierces my heart and makes me want to cry, but for who? Myself or God?

I am cheating myself out of the pleasure of being still and knowing Him. Am I a fraud? I wonder, since I would claim to have a relationship with Jesus, even if it meant I would be put to death. Then I am reminded of grace, GRACE that covers my weaknesses while I am still be molded and completed by God, GRACE that goes further than I could ever go and makes me pleasing in God's sight, regardless.

Ah, yes, Grace. So misunderstood by those who don't believe, as a crutch for fake believers, but truly the only hope true believers have to please God. What I cannot do, Christ does for me! What I lack, He is. Where I fall short, He makes it full. It is not me, but HE. And then, I properly reflect on really who I am instead of pretending to be what I am not. Yet at the same time I know because of HIM, I am holy in the sight of God, righteous by His covering, and pleasing for my childlike feeble trying.

What a paradox we Believers and Followers of Christ live! More of Him comes by less of me. The greater my weakness, the more of His strength lives through me. In my weakness, He is strong. By reducing, He increases. The less I think of me, the more I have space to think of Him. (John 3: 30, 2 Corinthians 12:8-10)

So, what shall I do, I will walk by faith and in grace. Not blind faith but faith that sees, that has "assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen" (Hebrews 11:1).

So now that I have written, let me try to be still and know that HE is my God (Psalms 46:10). I am loving "The Pleasure of HIS Company" by Dutch Sheets to assist me during this season.

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Who is Going to Help the Next "Freddie Gray"? The LIE that Destroys the Soul

"Freddie Grays" grow up knowing a life of crime. We have all seen his long rap sheet of mostly narcotic selling busts, but he was also doing burglary and other crimes. This is the life of many young people into their adulthood; it is the life they know. These are serious issues that need real honest answers. Freddie Gray is one individual and his life tragically ended; his death is being mourned by those who knew him and loved him. But can we as a society learn from the life and death of Freddie Gray? Can we make it have meaning and value for us to make changes?

Photo Credit: Desolate by DaKrunt DeviantArt

Some background

I don't know everything, but I do know that I have watched the life of my cousin who recently got out of 25 years of prison for selling LSD and other drugs, but mostly LSD in the 1980s. When he got caught he faked his own death to escape going to prison. I realize faking your own death is a really DUMB thing to do but a 19 year old who thinks he is a drug-king and invincible will do DUMB things. This was his first arrest, but he definitely complicated his sentence by running from the police and faking his own death. But isn't this what we see everyday, people who are guilty of crime running from police and ending up getting MORE penalty than they would if they would face the consequences of their actions. 

Let me say right from the start that I am not advocating 25 years for dealing drugs. My cousin went to prison in the 1980s when they were cracking down on drug dealers and he started out selling in high school. When his friends all went to college he was connected to about 15 colleges selling drugs. I know what he did was wrong, but 10 years would have been appropriate. And while I say that I don't know if it would have been long enough for him to stop being bitter, for him to make a determined change in his life. BUT I do know parole should have been offered to him when he turned his life around. 

My cousin did college classes while in the pen, and earned his Masters in college classes. I am not sure if it was online or not. He has been out for about 6 months and it is really hard to not mess up again. I am watching his experience, and I know the temptation to break the system is real. It is hard work to do what is right, to live clean and to WORK in order to get money to live on. He lived like a rich "king" for years selling drugs. He knows the temptation; I am sure he can taste it, but he has to HATE prison more. And he does. 

The "Freddie Grays"

Photo Credit: Trust by Valentinekills DeviantArt

So what should be done for a person, like Freddie Gray, with a long rap sheet? Should he be out on the street? In some communities, "Freddie Grays" are everywhere. I mean, where would all of the drug dealers be? In a "drug sellers institute" aka Prison; because let's face it, when they get out of prison they will go right back to the life of crime because it is all they know. 

And because of the gang life in prison, they only learn how to go deeper into the life of crime instead of how to break clean from it. My cousin was a independent white boy. He explains how it hardens you because you have to always watch your back, but he was determined not to join a gang. Of course, it is easier to just give in and join a gang and get the protection and live the life of crime while behind the bars. 

Truly, prisons are frequently training schools to become more hardened as a criminal. 

We need to take these problems seriously and listen to people who have lived behind the bars and in the belly of the system to know how to change the system. We need to value people who come out and change their life because they can teach citizens and government leaders a lot about how crooked and crime-ridden the prison system is. 

For 25 years while in Federal prison, my cousin makes it clear that you can get any drug you want WHILE in prison. The system is crooked and people who should be keeping the prisons clean look the other way because they are making big money to do so. 

So what about Freddie Gray, he was 25 years old. He had a long rap sheet. He was a life long criminal, mostly with small crime but he was in and out of courts. We need as a society to decide how do we reform the "freddie grays" of the society. What can we do about them? We need to see them as people and really give them opportunities to break away from the life of crime by separating them from the criminals and giving them a chance to change. And that is so easier said than done, because, frankly, it comes down to the individual choice and responsibility of the "freddie grays" about what he/she will do with their life. We, as a society, can't make that individual choice for them. If "he" does not want to change, if he wants to stay in the drug life and live a life of crime, what does a lawful society need to do?

Money is not the Answer

These are hard questions that MUST be LOOKED at and Answered. But putting more money into these communities does no good. We know this for a fact. Look at all of the money poured into these "poverty" cities that are still crumbling. They will destroy what they have and use the money for drugs, alcohol and crime. All of the organizers speaking on tv today say we need to INVEST more into these communities and that means they want more $$$$, but money does not solve a heart/soul issue. Most politicians and organizers are simply wanting power and money for themselves, they are not looking for solutions to help the individuals in need.

However, A person has to WANT to be different and want life to be different for his/her own CHILDREN. A person has to have a good reason to live and to know that he/she intrinsically has value/purpose. This is no longer taught because children from the day the enter school are taught that they are evolved from an ape, that they are an animal; the bottom line is this is the LIE that destroys the human soul. 

When are we going to face the truth? How long are we going to let people lie to our children and even convince adults that they have NO VALUE. Giving a person money does not give them value, any more than giving them housing or a welfare check. People NEED to WORK for what they get; it is the only way for them to OWN it, and to develop character traits that will continue with them in life to make them better people. 

No one wants to hear it anymore but the fact is we are each precious, priceless individuals created in the image of GOD. 

We are sinners needing grace, mercy and forgiveness. We are not animals; we have a spirit and a soul. We are more than a human body with passions for pleasure. We have value. The "freddie grays" of this world have value. Each individual is lovable, CREATED by God with a purpose; no animal in the animal kingdom are like humans. Yes, we can choose to do evil, sinful things, but we can also choose to do loving, kind things. We can reject the reality of God and live like animals or we can repent and accept that we are valuable in HIS sight, that HE loves each of us and wants to redeem our life for good. 

Photo Credit: Empathy by Mirror by AngelofDarkeness4 DeviantArt

This message is part of the Gospel message and it does not cost one penny to share, but it heals hurts and restores brokeness. It give life where there is death. And it grows beauty out of the ashes. 

If you watched the television last night you watches pockets of Baltimore burn. You watched citizens burn down their own city. Of course, they are angry. They have community leaders that don't value them as individuals who are created in the image of God. They need the truth. They don't need RELIGION. They need relationships. They need love. They need to hear about responsibility and accountability. Love is tough. 

I don't have all the answers but I do know the ONE who does. And HE is not a politician, community organizer, an agitator or leader of a false gospel church that are all looking for money. Money does not heal the heart. The poorest person in the world can be the most loving, kind, giving soul. We rob a person of dignity when we give them things and money for not working. Even the disable can do something for money given to help support themselves. 

Don't confuse a relationship with God and His loving, healing principles with RELIGION. The two are worlds apart; opposites. 

So what do people need to hear:

1. You are created in the image of God and a priceless creation loved by God who created the universe.

2. You are a sinner, in need of forgiveness and grace/mercy. You owe a debt to God you can not pay.

3. God will forgive you because Jesus died on the Cross for your sin. Jesus paid your debt.

4. When and if you ask God to forgive you, and truly repent for what you have done wrong, you can chose for Him to be LORD of your life; you can give your life to him and have purpose for living. You can become a new creation viewed by God as blameless, clean and righteous. 

5. But the choice is yours, no one can make it for you. God will never force himself on anyone. Everything God offers is freely given to those who ask. 

6. If you make this decision, find a Bible teaching church and read the Bible for yourself. Ask God to teach you how to obey his word and to love others as He loves you. Grow in faith and understanding being redeemed and restored to God, live life as a responsible, valuable individual and loving help your neighbors/family/friends.

Please let me know if you need help or want to understand more.