Thursday, October 22, 2009

God's Gentle Whisper

1 Kings 19

11
The LORD said, "Go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the LORD, for the LORD is about to pass by."
Then a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the LORD, but the LORD was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the LORD was not in the earthquake. 12 After the earthquake came a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper. 13 When Elijah heard it, he pulled his cloak over his face and went out and stood at the mouth of the cave.

For the past year, I have been reading through Karen Kingsbury's books. As I finished one the other night, she referenced this passage. I've read and reread it many times over the past week.

How many times in our lives, do we expect to see God's answer as a huge event such as wind...or earthquake...or fire? After all, he is GOD...he can do those things if he wanted to. But here Elijah received his answer from God not in the fire, not in the wind, and not in the earthquake...but in a gentle whisper.

Do I listen closely enough to God to hear his gentle whisper? Do I stop talking long enough to hear him? I wonder if he sent the fire, earthquake, and wind first to get Elijah's attention? How many times does he put things in our lives to catch our attention...so we will hear his gentle, loving voice?

Praying today that we will be still and hear his gentle whisper in each of our lives.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

God's Blessings

Give, and you will receive. Your gift will return to you in full—pressed down, shaken together to make room for more, running over, and poured into your lap. The amount you give will determine the amount you get back.

Luke 6:38 NLT

The picture running through my mind reading this was me in the kitchen last night, trying to fit a five pound bag of flour into my canister. Its just one of those things for me...I can't stand having an open bag of flour in my cupboard. So I shake and pour, shake and pour, trying to get as much in as I can. Often it pours out on the counter and all over the place!

What a great verse! The New Living Translation amplifies the quantity with which God blesses our lives...pressed down, shaken together to make room for more...running over, and poured out...We are full to overflowing (kind of like the closets in my house, and my garage)!

But read it again in a different version

Luke 6:38 (New International Version)

Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you."

During our Wednesday night class, we have worked through a couple of Angela Thomas' studies. Notes I took one particular night are still tucked inside my Bible, because something she said really made an impact. She says her worst fear is getting to heaven, looking in God's eyes, and him saying, "Oh daughter, I had such plans for you." God has an amazing set of plans, and blessings, just waiting for us if we will USE them!

Using God's plans for our lives is not always easy. We've also been studying Esther recently. Esther was called by God to do something extremely difficult and dangerous. But out of her obedience came great blessings. Sometimes our greatest "blessing" is having Him walking us through what he has called us to do!

My prayer for you and for me today is that we recognize opportunities in our lives to give and receive God's blessings. Let's not miss out on all he has planned for us!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Starting Over

I've spent a lot of quality time with my computer this weekend...and last week. Its that time of the year with my job where we close the books on one year, then plan and prepare for the next. I've been evaluating reports, crunching numbers and typing like a mad woman.

Admittedly, the 2009 season was one I was glad to close the books on. It was a difficult year. So as I sat working on 2010 plans it hit me, what if every time we had a tough season in our lives, wouldn't it be great if we could close the books on that part of our life and start over?

Well guess what? We can.

Its called Grace.

Our Father forgives us for our mistakes and shortcomings. He takes out his big eraser and wipes them all away. The harder part is allowing ourselves to do the same thing. I'm the worst at forgiving myself and moving on.

This week on one of my road warrior days, I was priviledged to hear David Crowder sing and talk about one of his new songs "Oh, How He Loves Us" The song has played over and over again in my head. Today, as I watched the video and saw the words again...I know why it stayed with me:

And my heart turns violently inside of my chest, I don’t have time to maintain these regrets, When I think about, the way… He loves us,

He loves us! He forgives us. Remembering that is enough. Remembering how he forgets...and how I should forgive myself...and allow myself to start over.

Here's the song. Enjoy.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TWgeUrD4MHI

Welcome

This morning, I sit listening to my oldest hacking away on the couch, we're missing worship in God's house today...but he certainly made sure I worshiped. Thank you God for grabbing a hold of me again a few weeks ago, shaking me from the numbness in which I had been walking.



I've kept a journal for a long time, for the better part of three years. About a year ago, I made it private after someone I lost their job over prayer requests they had included in their blog. Scared, I locked my thoughts up and made my journal private. Recently, God has been pressing on my heart to return to public blogging...to minister through the lessons he teaches me. So here it is, open to those who choose to read in the hopes that the little lessons He teaches me through my dear children, my prayer warrior friends, or the amazing people in which I come in contact with every day will allow you to see his mark on your life too.