February 27, 2010

Days of Change

The last several months have been a whirlwind of change in my life. Aside from all the moves I’ve made (and I’m not talking about dance moves, either), there has been a lot of shifting within me. This is the biggest reason why I quit blogging. I’ve mostly been trying to hang on for the ride, and keep myself steady through all the changes. And there are more to come soon.

The thing I am most thankful for right now through all these changes is the learning experience. I do believe I have grown a lot (spiritually) throughout the last ten months. God brought me to a different place—physically, spiritually, and emotionally—so He could do a work in me. And I am so very thankful for that.

My greatest desire is that I take everything I have learned with me, no matter where I am. I want to be God’s instrument. I am not content sitting on the sidelines anymore. I need to be enveloped in working for God, because this world won’t last much longer, and I want to be sure that my time on this Earth has been spent wisely.

October 28, 2009

Life’s Little Moments

For a few weeks now I have been overwhelmed with current events. Every day I found myself glued to the news (mostly online), checking for the lastest stories to keep me abreast on what’s happening around the world and here at home in the U.S. I’ve been disheartened with what’s going on. Yet, at the same time, I feel my spirit dancing because I know this world is not my home, and one of these days I’ll be called home to be with my Savior forever.

But for now, how do you deal with everything? It’s easy to become overwhelmed and inundated by the craziness of this world. It’s scary to know what happens all around us, sometimes right in our own back yards. But we can’t become paralyzed with fear.

Life happens in small moments. If we spend every moment worrying about the future, we’ll miss the goodness in our life right now. So I’m learning to take it all in doses. Yes, I still read the news because I think it is important to be knowledgeable. However, when I feel myself beginning to slip into that worrisome, fearful state of mind, I back away from the news. God has not given us a spirit of fear (2 Timothy 1:4), so I refuse to allow myself to succumb to that.  I’m going to enjoy life’s little moments and know that God is in total control.

October 22, 2009

Are you ready?

With every passing day, there are more and more events happening and plans being set into motion that confirm the Word of God about the end of time. It seems like the last few weeks my awareness has become much more astute than ever before.

Growing up, I always heard older people talking about the rapture. I heard them say many times that Jesus was coming soon. And I’ve always believed that one day Jesus will come back for His church, but it has never been more real to me than it is right now.

This heightened awareness makes my spirit leap for joy. I cannot wait until the burdens of this life roll away and we are caught up to meet Him in the air. When that awesome day comes, I know without a doubt that every burden and trial we’ve ever faced here on this earth will forever be forgotten. I can hardly wait!

Some people become a little scared when they hear others talking about the end times. They feel nervous about what might happen, or how it will happen. I have no idea what will take place or when God will call His children home to be with Him. I can’t allow myself to become encumbered with worry over what events might take place and how it might affect me. All I can do is make sure I’m prayed up and ready when He comes. I need to see after my family and do everything I can to encourage others to make their souls ready and right with God.

Are you ready? Will your traveling shoes be on when that great trumpet sounds?

September 29, 2009

When God Tells You To Ask

“Moreover, the Lord spoke again to King Ahaz, saying, Ask for yourself a sign (a token or proof) of the Lord your God [one that will convince you that God has spoken and will keep His word]; ask it either in the depth below or the height above [let it be as deep as Sheol or as high as heaven]. But Ahaz said, I will not ask, neither will I tempt the Lord.”
- Isaiah 7:10-12

 

War was unsuccessfully being plotted against Jerusalem. It was scary times, but God was on the scene and in control. He knew about the evil plotting against His people and He did not like it one bit. So He sent Isaiah with a message for Ahaz.

God was so thorough that He not only told Ahaz, through the prophet, that Jerusalem was in danger, but He even went as far as to lay out the plans in detail that had been created to destroy them. How amazing is that? That fact alone, that God would love a people so much that He would send specific word about someone’s plans to destroy them astounds me.

After revealing the enemy’s plans of destruction, the Lord tells Ahaz not to worry, that the plans wouldn’t stand and would never come to pass. But then He takes it one step even further, when He gives HIS offensive plan to Ahaz, with a clear timeline of how and when everything will happen.

But the Lord didn’t even stop there. He loved Ahaz so much, and was so concerned that Ahaz be strengthened and encouraged to believe in His word, that He told Ahaz to ask Him for a sign as confirmation of God’s word. And here’s the kicker...Ahaz refused the Lord.

How many times have we done this? How often have we listened to and received a word from God, through our pastor or a preacher, then crossed our arms and refused it? How many times has God reached out to us, through the ministry, and tugged on our heartstrings? Yet we feel condemned of our own sins, shortcomings, flaws, or faults, so we choose to shake our heads and say, “No, I don’t deserve to ask God for anything. I’m not worthy to receive a word from Him.”

I wonder how often God becomes weary with me. I can just imagine Him reaching to me, saying, “Hope, here I am. Ask what you want of me and I’ll grant it to you.” And there I sit, trapped by my own fears or failures, convincing myself that I shouldn’t request something more from God.

How dare we refuse God? How dare we weary Him with our foolishness?

Perhaps there is an underlying reason why we decide not to ask Him for that sign that we need, or otherwise. Maybe it’s because there is hidden rebellion in our heart. Maybe we think we have the answers we need already, so what more could God say to convince us otherwise? This is a scary place to be.

Or maybe we want to believe God’s word spoken to our lives, but we’ve lost all hope and that word seems far too wonderful, beyond our wildest expectations. Maybe our vision has dimmed to the point that we can barely see the hope of the prize we strive for.

Whatever the reason, we must choose to set it aside. We have to realize that God loves us. He sent His son into this world of sin, so that we could be saved. How can we refuse such love?

The solution to this is simple. When God calls, respond. When He speaks a word into your life that sparks hope inside you, but you’re still afraid, ask for that sign you need. When He gives you that promise, write it down. Count on it. Believe it. Above all, never be afraid to ask, especially when He tells you to.

September 28, 2009

What’s on the agenda

This morning I’m sitting here thinking about all the things I need to do and all the things I want to do this week. The last few weeks have been especially interesting around here—mostly because I have been struggling to find balance in my life amidst a lot of stress. I have totally disregarded schedules and planning and I think that is only contributing to my stress levels. I like order. I like schedules. I like knowing what’s going to happen and when.

So I want to create a tentative agenda for myself for this week. I think it will make me feel better. I’m going to do this in two ways. First, I’m going to jot a quick list of tasks. Then I’m going to plug these into my calendar. I don’t know if this will work or not, but I’m going to find out! :)

Quick List

  1. Housework (cleaning, laundry, etc.)—Monday
  2. Study
    1. Sunday School lesson for next week
    2. bible study
    3. Woman After God’s Own Heart
  3. Writing
    1. catch up on last week’s stuff
    2. start outlining article for magazine
    3. book
  4. Go through closets & toys for donation box
  5. Finances
    1. budget for October
    2. Christmas
    3. pay kids’ lunch money @ school
  6. Read
    1. WAGOH (#2 above)
    2. fiction
  7. School
    1. Call to finalize withdrawal process
    2. take care of financial aid stuff
    3. check up on misc. stuff
    4. check in with advisor for next steps

I have a lot more than this I want to accomplish, but I am going to continue this list offline after I get started on the housework this morning.

What’s on your agenda this week?