Thursday, July 18, 2013

The Lord Is My Light and My Salvation; Whom Shall I Fear?

Psalm 27

King James Version (KJV)
27 The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? the Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?
When the wicked, even mine enemies and my foes, came upon me to eat up my flesh, they stumbled and fell.
Though an host should encamp against me, my heart shall not fear: though war should rise against me, in this will I be confident.
One thing have I desired of the Lord, that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the Lord, and to enquire in his temple.
For in the time of trouble he shall hide me in his pavilion: in the secret of his tabernacle shall he hide me; he shall set me up upon a rock.
And now shall mine head be lifted up above mine enemies round about me: therefore will I offer in his tabernacle sacrifices of joy; I will sing, yea, I will sing praises unto the Lord.
Hear, O Lord, when I cry with my voice: have mercy also upon me, and answer me.
When thou saidst, Seek ye my face; my heart said unto thee, Thy face, Lord, will I seek.
Hide not thy face far from me; put not thy servant away in anger: thou hast been my help; leave me not, neither forsake me, O God of my salvation.
10 When my father and my mother forsake me, then the Lord will take me up.
11 Teach me thy way, O Lord, and lead me in a plain path, because of mine enemies.
12 Deliver me not over unto the will of mine enemies: for false witnesses are risen up against me, and such as breathe out cruelty.
13 I had fainted, unless I had believed to see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.
14 Wait on the Lord: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the Lord.

Friday, February 8, 2013

Got a great email today!

I got a really great email today and just have to blog about receiving it. I never want to forget moments like this where God shows up when you need Him most through those you least expect!

In the email was a poem that she wrote! I won't post it because I don't have her permission, but it was a great poem and one that I needed to read.

Grateful for the small things that make a great impact!

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Dancing & Being Adventurous!

Some days we get the joy and some days sorrow. Today has definitely been a lot of the joy! I went to another private lesson and we danced the Rumba Promenade, Waltz, FoxTrot, and Jitterbug! I didn't dance with Charlie today but instead with Antonio, but Charlie was there cheering me on as Antonio twirled me around the dance floor! Both are great and a lot of fun, but I can tell there's a bit of a difference in their style of teaching dance! I got to do 3 of my favorite things - laugh a whole lot, dance and hear great music, and I loved every minute of it!

I'm looking forward to going back tonight for the practice party!!! At night I never know who I'm going to end up dancing with because you just show up and get who you get. A few times I ended up partnering with another lady, but we did great together and had a ball! She was also a dance instructor, so it wasn't too weird having her lead!

I'm taking the advice from my good friend and boss and being adventurous! I feel like a late bloomer at times as I'm just beginning to discover and figure some things out about myself, but I guess that's all part of the journey - getting to know, love, and accept all the unique parts that God interweaves to make us who we are! I sometimes think oh if I had only had the confidence, discipline, and maturity when I was younger to stick with dance... but.. the great thing about dancing for those in whom dancing burns within their soul... the passion never goes away; it is something that is fully and quickly able to be reignited in an instant! 

In another life, perhaps, I would definitely have been a dancer!

This Journey is full of Confessing and Repenting!

On Sunday I had to repent about my anger and bitterness and then on Monday I had to repent about trying to justify my anger and bitterness. I don't know why it took me so long accept that I didn't want to see myself as I am. I truly believe that we rarely see ourselves the way we truly are. Sometimes I am too honest about my own struggles and quick to acknowledge when I've offended someone, but there are also times I want to hide my Sins under the biggest rock that I can find! 

Perhaps another reason I delayed repenting is in my mind I was playing the game of Lord I will forgive this person when you change this person and make them confess their sin against You and ME and then I will repent for my sins against them! But I know that that is not how God works. Often times it seems the offender gets to keep right on hurting people and seems to get away with it even while they are pointing the finger at you at trying to expose your wrongs, but not me, God deals with my crap right away and the more I run the worse it gets for me!

I hate my SIN! I hate the things that I have said and done and how I felt justified because of the pain others caused me. I hate every bit of it, everything even down to the dirty looks and snide remarks I've given over the years, all of my sin. I've had to confess and repent, confess and repent continuously. It seems there is never a time when I don't have something new or even something old that resurfaces to repent about and ask the Lord to change me! Yet I don't always confess and repent without justifying and I don't confess and repent as quickly as I would like. To not acknowledge that I've grown and matured because of Christ in me is a dishonor to the work He's done in me, but there's still areas of my heart that hurt deeply and if I'm truthful, not surrendered and  I hate that too! Like my fears!

I think when I went through women's steps and then was asked to lead groups and sponsor women and then the door opened to working in a counseling ministry, I believe God used it and uses it all to continue to help me to recognize my sin instead of looking outward at everyone else's, but there are times when I revert back to "look at what they did to me, and when will they have to answer for the pain they are and have caused me, Lord"! So back to humbling myself before the Lord in need of confessing and repenting of my sins regardless of if others change. It is never easy as I've learned on this journey, but I asked God a long time ago to change me, heal my heart, use me to help others to know His truth that they too might be set free and He is doing just that, but yet as my pastor has mentioned in his own life, I find some things more difficult to move past and I sometimes find myself dealing with one particular area all over again! I hate that too! But the reality is, that's the reality in each of our lives. It's a process.

I don't dare ask God why He continues to use me in these ministries because I know it is a gift and blessing, but I confess it isn't easy to counsel and deal with your own junk and help others at the same time! People assume that your junk is fixed - I hate that too! I always have to tell them that I have my areas just like everyone else! And that if things were fixed, I wouldn't need Christ and I certainly would be able to do the job I do counseling the hurting, broken and lost without Him! People don't get that it takes submission to the Lord to do this job. It's not about relying on my skills, strengths and abilities  but rather on His. I don't know the people ahead of time that come to us for counseling, so I have no way to prepare in advance, only God. I counseled several people tonight and at least 3 that I can think of received something and were thankful for what they received and even stated that God must have wanted them to talk to me. I had to explain that it was truly God because I was being ministered to as well through the very words God had me speak to them. Ok, i went off on a tangent, but my point is, I've not made it through sanctification! I still have things that God is working on within me too. I still make mistakes and have to confess and repent. I just pray that i don't have to revisit some things again. I'm tired. I guess when I surrender it, He will take it and I'll be free of it and won't be so tired! What a journey! 

Thank God I don't have to depend on me or man for deliverance and sanctification otherwise there would be no sanctification!

Humble my heart. Confess my sin and acknowledge the impact my sin has on others rather than justify and expect others to change. I am responsible for me!

Monday, February 4, 2013

Family

I've gained an understanding that God is in control. He chooses our family, not just the family we are born into, but those He elects to connect each of to during the course of our journey. My experience with both types of family have taught me to be incredibly grateful for those He has chosen to elect as my family in Christ. Although there are times when you long to be close to the family you were born into, sometimes it's just not possible.

Not everyone gets a "normal" loving family. Some of us get the self-centered and sometimes down right hateful type of family. I don't mean every single person in my family, but sometimes the venom of those who are vicious smother and crowd out those who are gentle and loving.

If you've ever experienced rejection from family members, you know that it is a terrible feeling. The wound can be so deep that it takes the hand of God to reach down that deep and restore the hurt of rejection. Over the years and even recently, I've had to accept that some family members will say terrible things to you and behind your back. They will sometimes stop at nothing to make you look bad, especially when they sense that someone admires you. I've been hurt deeply by things said and things shared about me. I've been laughed at and at times made the joke amongst their homes. I wonder if I should have tried to communicate more how much those things have hurt? Perhaps the effort I made was all that I was required to do whether it made an impact or not. Perhaps at the time I was just in shock and utterly speechless hearing how causally they mocked and shared personal details about my private life. People can be cruel, but as you may have experienced, it somehow feels worse when it is cruelty from family.

I'm asking the Lord to continue to change my heart and keep me strong under trials and persecution. I'm asking Him to help me to serve my purpose, finish this race strong, and help me to focus more on Him instead of allowing others' hatred and bitterness toward me to be a distraction. I know that it isn't really me that they hate; it's really themselves. Rejection breeds rejection and misery breeds misery.

I will continue to strive to find joy in simple things such as being able to enjoy the company of those the Lord brings across my path, embracing those whose only agenda is to enjoy the experience or experience the joy of meeting new people as I do, and sharing in laughter. I pray that the Lord will continue to connect me to wonderful people who I can pour into and vise verse. I also pray that the Lord would restore and heal the hearts of my entire family and my heart as well. I will never understand why some family members are so against one another, hating, competing, and wanting one another to fail rather than succeed, but I trust that God had a purpose in mind when He allowed each of us to be connected as family members and that His plans for each of us will continue to go forth! He uses the good and the bad. He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and He sends rain on the just and on the unjust (Matt 5:45), so going forward I will try to be a good example and do my best to reflect the heart of Christ, and even as they hug me and tell me they love me, and all the while my heart knowing that out of the same mouth and same heart they mock, laugh, and cast insults, I will apply wisdom and guard my heart (Prov 4:23), so that everything that flows from in and out of it is fruitful, and I will strive to be obedient and do as Jesus says -- "Pray for those who persecute you" (Matt 5:44) -- Yes Lord, I will pray.

In Christ.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Can FB Ever Truly Be Deleted!

Decided to delete fb, but I've noticed it never really goes away. My Twitter posts are set to automatically post to fb, so guess altering that is something I can do. Was just hoping I could delete it. Hmm..what to do? I thought about designing a page for ministry purposes, but let's face it, I'm no web page designer, not even close, so what do I do with Face Book?

Monday, January 28, 2013

Reminded of the Vision - Living with Purpose


I’m supposed to be reminding others to live with purpose – that’s what the Lord continues to put on my heart, and that’s also what I began my blog about or rather the focus of the blog is Living with Purpose. Once in a while life throws us off course, but God is faithful and is always ready to set us back on track. It’s amazing what He uses to help us regain focus.
The recent death of a dear friend reminds me of Living with Purpose. She modeled well intentionally Living with Purpose. God used her in a mighty way to impact the lives of others. I don’t know anyone who wasn’t touched and affected by her loving heart. She was strong and courageous even through her many years of battling cancer. People were so astounded by her faith and willingness to openly share her struggles with cancer. She believed God could heal and she said so! She knew that God would bring her healing whether here on earth or there in heaven. But regardless, while she was here, cancer and nothing else got in the way of her helping others and making others feel that they had a sense of purpose.

So I want to continue my blog in the way that it was intended – reminding others that their life has meaning and purpose through Christ. He’s the only way to truly know and understand how to live your life with purpose. As you draw close to Him, He will reveal your purpose, thus He will be glorified and you will receive the joy and the blessings of the journey!

Your life matters. You are NO mistake. Your life has purpose!

Live your life with purpose!