Saturday, March 19, 2011

Right Now, Tough Lessons.

The Lord disciplines those he loves. And hardships, according to Hebrews 12, should be viewed as discipline. And discipline is training. And this training is hard and painful!

Right now, I am learning the very hard lesson of silence.

Right now I would like nothing more than to scream what is right and true at the top of my lungs, with every fiber of my being.

Right now I would like to fight for my rights.

Right now I would like to be heard.


Right now I am being called to silence.

Right now I am being called to trust God to defend.

Right now I am being called to wait for God's justice.

Right now I am being called to peace.

Unity is not won by arguing with those who will argue. Peace is not given in fighting with those who desire to fight. When division is sought, it is not overcome with wise or persuasive words.

Unity only comes through the Holy Spirit, by each individual submitting to His authority and power. For the Lord will not be divided against himself. One person cannot cause another person to submit by force of will, it must come from each person's own heart acting in faith.

I firmly believe that our goal is unity. For when a body of believers submits to the Holy Spirit and begins to act according to the Holy Spirit, it is then that God removes all barriers that hinder us from accomplishing anything He sets before us. It was God, himself, that said at the tower of Babel, that if man could be unified in one language with one purpose, he could accomplish ANYTHING. (which incidentally is why he confused our language in the first place) It was also God, who at Pentecost, when the believers where worshiping and preaching the good news in accordance with the Holy Spirit, that removed all the barriers and allowed those there to hear each in his own language and the Lord added to their numbers daily those who were being saved. Isn't that the goal? Why yes, yes, it is!

I firmly believe that I am right (just ask my husband, I am rarely wrong! ;) ). But, God is calling me to put aside my rights to be unified with Him.

Right now being right cannot bring unity.

Right now, I must choose. Will I be right? Or will I trust the God of the universe and be unified, reconciled to Him?

Though it goes against every fiber of my flesh, and I probably won't do it perfectly, I am choosing to submit myself to the Spirit. To be silent. To trust. To wait. Peace.

Right NOW.


Friday, March 18, 2011

Who Knew!?

I received a phone call yesterday from the friend who cut my hair about 6 weeks ago. She told me it was time for a haircut and to get myself in there! (Note: I am not accustomed to getting my hair cut every 6 weeks, more like every 3-4 MONTHS! And that's if I'm lucky!) Being a very obedient child, I set an appointment with her today. I figured if she wants to give me a free haircut 6 weeks after my last free haircut, then I am in!

I went in today. I got the treatment! Shampooing that felt like a massage on my scalp, a great haircut, and therapy!

This friend of mine couldn't be a bigger encourager if she tried! She listened to me lament non-specifically about our situation, and offered her support in prayer. She joked other clients until I was almost in stitches. We talked of parenting issues and gray hair. And when she finished blowing my hair dry, she looked me in the eye and told me not to worry about my gray hair, that God made me to be the exact woman that I am. In His eyes I'm famous! And precious! That the things that are taking place in my life are no reflection on me, but the choices of those who made them. That God will use this to make me more into the woman he has created me to be!

Seriously, tears rolling down my face! Who knew that a haircut could lift one's spirit from despair? This after reading this morning: "Don't spend time trying to figure everything out, leaning on your own understanding. Instead, acknowledge God, who He is with all His attributes and the fact that He is in the midst of everything that is taking place. Then He will straighten out your path." (Lynn paraphrase of the Message) God straightened out my path a bit today through the encouragement of friends.

In the words of Larry the Cucumber, "I laughed. I cried. It moved me, Bob!" Who knew all that from a simple haircut?!


Saturday, March 12, 2011


I grew up in a church that doesn't really participate in liturgical, high-church practices. Not sure if that's really a way to describe it. In short, we don't do Lent.

I was probably an adult before I even learned what Lent was all about. My understanding of Lent is about as basic as it gets; giving up something in your life that is a sacrifice from Ash Wednesday until Easter for the purpose of remembering the sacrifice that Christ made for you on the cross. So that every time you desire that thing you have given up you remember the cross and thank God for sending his son.

I have never seriously participated in Lent. It's a tradition that, while seeming beneficial in a sentimental sort of way, never seemed necessary. I don't know what's different about this year. Nothing, really. But I was inspired to sacrifice something this year.

Here were my top 6 choices: coffee, Facebook, chocolate, my children, Lois & Clark reruns, and Bejeweled Blitz on Facebook. Of course, I didn't start thinking seriously about giving up something for Lent until I had already snuggled my children, had a cup of coffee, checked my Facebook and ate a brownie! That left my favorite show and my favorite game. How to choose? It came down to two factors. I spend time snuggling my husband while watching my favorite show and I really didn't think he would want to give that up. And, my biggest competitor, Lynn, had already decided to give up Bejeweled Blitz for Lent herself.

I was inspired, really. Lynn was giving up her addiction in hopes of spending the time she would normally be playing Bejeweled for deepening her relationship with Christ. Not only thanking God for giving his son to die for us, but sacrificing something so trivial in order to spend more time getting to know and worshiping our Savior!

Yes, I gave up my countless hours of Bejeweled Blitz, and in my case, I determined to give up all games on Facebook so that I wouldn't be tempted to just trade addictions, but really make myself open to choosing to walk closer to my Jesus.

Today is day 4. I have noticed that gap in my time. And I have chosen to fill it by listening to some sermons that encourage me to a deeper walk. I look so forward to the next weeks to see what God has to teach me through obedience and sacrifice!


Thursday, March 10, 2011


I heard a sermon about worship a few years ago. The preacher talked about the positions of worship; standing, kneeling, and prostrate. Prostrate. Flat on your face. I have a few years of martial arts under my [hi-blue] belt, and let me tell you, flat on your face is the most vulnerable position you can be in. Flat on your face you are utterly defenseless. You cannot protect yourself. You can't get out of the path of what's coming. You can't see anything coming. It struck a chord in me to relate that to worship.

Worshiping flat on my face means putting myself totally at God's mercy. Utter deference to His will. Total surrender.

I had never been physically prostrate before God until that day. But, it has become one of my favorite positions for prayer and worship. And the bigger things seem, the more I want to fall flat on my face before my Father.

That's where I was tonight. The situation we are facing is overwhelming emotionally. There are times when I just can't wrap my mind around it. I needed some flat-on-my-face time with God. I didn't even know what to pray, so I just cried out knowing that my Intercessor would fill in all the gaps.

Beautiful One I love.

God met me there. He began by reminding me that He had given me hope to hold onto earlier today. "May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit." Romans 15:13 (NIV 2010) And, "Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful." Hebrews 10:23 (NIV 2010) My God is a God of hope! This morning when I first read these verses I had no idea what was coming this afternoon. I had no idea that I would need to cling to that hope, hold fast to his promises.

In total surrender, I found hope.

I read on in Hebrews until I got into chapter 12, verses 5-11.
"“My son, do not make light of the Lord’s discipline,
and do not lose heart when he rebukes you,
because the Lord disciplines the one he loves,
and he chastens everyone he accepts as his son.”

Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as his children. For what children are not disciplined by their father? If you are not disciplined—and everyone undergoes discipline—then you are not legitimate, not true sons and daughters at all. Moreover, we have all had human fathers who disciplined us and we respected them for it. How much more should we submit to the Father of spirits and live! They disciplined us for a little while as they thought best; but God disciplines us for our good, in order that we may share in his holiness. No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.
" (NIV 2010)

God intends to accomplish a purpose in what we are muddling through. Not only is it for our good, but he wants us to share in his holiness in the midst of it. He understands that it is not pleasant, that it's painful even. But his promise is that later we will reap a harvest of righteousness and peace, if we allow him to train us through this.

That's a lot to take in. I have some responsibility in this current situation. I need to learn from what I've done and what has happened, because that's part of my training. But I have this hope: it won't last forever and God is faithful to fulfill his promises, to give me a harvest of righteousness and peace. I need to see God's love for me in this, and I do. He has been with us every step of the way.

In putting myself at God's mercy, I found him to be merciful.

Prostrate before a mighty, holy God.

Flat. On. My. Face.


Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Rebel Thoughts.

Weird. I haven't blogged in over 2 weeks. I've missed it and yet, I've had very little to say. Life is busy.

I play in a band. Did you know that? I play keyboards and sing. Last month our leader had to step down. This band has had such a growing effect on my life that I hated to just see it all fall apart. So I talked to the other band members and we decided collectively to continue on. One of the other members of the band is helping with the leadership, but the majority of it has fallen on my shoulders. I am totally out of my element here. I'm an organized person by nature, but I'm also a procrastinator! Those things create a dichotomy of sorts (which sums me up quite well, tyvm!). God is using this to grow and stretch me. To make me into a new creation. To develop self-discipline in me that I sadly lack. To humble me, by that I mean to get me over myself. And hopefully He will use me/us as a band to touch the lives of the people that we play for.

My "Kake" business is steady. It's another way that God is stretching me. I am not pursuing advertising or sales, I just take them as they come and trust God. I'm fully amazed by His provision, daily! Trusting Him for orders. He is enough!

As I was typing this, I just got word that progress is moving forward on our situation. This is a mixed bag of emotions for us. Mostly I'm relieved that we are not dangling in this void for a long time. Part of me is horrified at what is happening. Jesus be near.