Saturday, August 31, 2013

Foregiveness is an Amazing Thing

When was the last time you forgave someone? I mean seriously forgave them?.. How often does someone say I am sorry and you respond with that's ok.. It's not ok, that person did something that hurt you, something wrong, something that required forgiveness and by not acknowledging it, you are not doing your part of the job. 

Ephesians 4:31-32 
Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you

Where would we be if God had said, hey no biggee..Where would we be had not God shown us the true power of forgiveness? What would our lives be like? Where would the hope be? We would be plunged in eternal darkness. First in our bleak existence then in our afterlife. Who would even want an afterlife? Ok, megalomaniacs and dictators.. but who among us wants to live in a dark world with no forgiveness? I know I don't.. 

I know I would be so lost if God did not daily, minutely, constantly offer me forgiveness. I would be a wreck of a human being. I am already enough of a mess with the knowledge of God's love and forgiveness.. without it.. yeah not a pretty site. 

So my thought today is.. God forgave us, we learn to forgive others, sometimes we aren't so good at it but we try. At least I do. When was the last time you forgave yourself? When did you let yourself know that God's forgiveness means that you no longer have to punish yourself? I have trouble with this one. I have trouble letting go. I am a grudge holder. I punish myself over and over again. Of course I hold grudges against other people too.. you know that kid who in the 4th grade made my kid cry? Yeah, he's toast.. seriously. 

And that is not how we should live our lives. We have been forgiven, washed white as snow. Now we need to pass that forgiveness on. To ourselves, to our friends, to our families to those we may never see again. Let it go.. Allow the light to shine into your darkness and disperse it.


** Yeah I know, so much easier said than done!

Friday, August 30, 2013

Looking for A Good Social Group? Attend Church!

So, in theory, we are or used to be a Christian Society. Long before we stopped being a Christian Society, we stopped being a society that went to church. We became a society that was formed on Judeo/Christian beliefs. And the reason we stopped being a Christian Society? Well we stopped going to church. 

I know when my life is in shambles (like it is right now) one of the reasons is because I don't have a connection with God. Oh sure, you can worship God anywhere, and I do. But peer pressure isn't always a bad thing. 

Matthew 18:20
For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.

Find yourself a church, take your time go to a few, check out denominations you aren't sure of. I joined the Catholic church in our area because, well my husband was Catholic and was only comfortable there, but mostly because when I walked into that church, it was the only place with people there to greet me. That wanted to get to know me, that offered me a chance to become involved.. In short it was a community I could get into. 

When my ex decided that he would rather spend the rest of his life with a bottle, rather than his wife and four kids.. It was that very same Catholic Church, that helped me get my first apartment, that put food on the table at Thanksgiving and Christmas, that made sure my kids had presents (and there were some pretty awesome presents in there). 

I stayed with that church while my kids were growing up, I didn't want to add more change to their lives. But when the time came I found another denomination that suited me best and my youngest came with me. The rest, are still Catholic. 

The thing is, church is so much more than weekly worship service. It's a place to gather with people who share your faith. A true place to find friends.. a friend to go to the movies with, a friend to meet for lunch, a friend to share your struggles with or better yet a friend where you can share theirs. And the people that go to church? Well they are doctors and lawyers and plumbers and students and housewives and... yeah you get the picture. There is a wide variety of people to get to know. 

Most of the people you meet in church will encourage your faith. You won't have that awkward moment of silence when you bring God into the conversation. He is already there, part of the party. 

So we go to church to commune with God, learn lessons about our faith and God rewards us with people to share our lives with.. win/win! 


Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Giving God the Power and taking it away from Man

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Ever feel like you are a useless loser? That no matter how hard you try your life is a joke? Ever feel like the opinions of others have defined you? Molded you? Created you? yeah me too.. and that is SO wrong. We, as Christians know who created us, who wants to mold us, whose very being should define us. And yet so often we allow the world to interfere. 

I know I do.. it's hard not to. We are humans, we were born into families and societies and we want those families and societies to love us. To respect us, so we conform to their images. Not a horrid aspect if you come from a loving Christian family, but even there you have to deal with disappointed parents, family members. People who just "know" what is best for you. Even when you know what path you should be taking. When you feel God's call from the deepest part of your soul.. yet often we still listen to the chatter around us. Why? Well we want to be loved. We want to be accepted.. 

Standing for God can be hard, it shouldn't be. It should be a joyous statement. A powerful freedom.. but pressure, peer, family, societal.. sucks.. and yes often I succumb. 

The worst thing is when I finally stand up for my beliefs and I wonder.. am I doing this for me or for God? Am I writing this very blog because I want acknowledgement or because I need to serve God? Do I want validation so desperately that I will even use my faith, as a launching pad? Doubt.. what a demon doubt can be. How does one escape it? 

Honestly there is only one way, a way I am ever so neglectful of, and that way is to constantly be in communication with God. Spend time with your God.. spend time with the scriptures.. Even when you doubt, even when you question.. the positive reinforcements can only help. Instead of putting constant filth into your brain put some God Power in there. My grandma used to have a saying, well she had several, but one that comes to mind now is "Your mind is like a computer, Garbage in, Garbage out" what did that mean? Well if we only feed our minds negative information only negative information will come out. If that is true then it stands to reason, if we put positive messages in, God's message in, then God's message will come out. 

The most important thing to remember is that serving man gets you nowhere.. Oh sure we should serve.. but serve God.. We can serve God by serving our country, as soldiers  politicians, mail carriers (trying to think of all the gov't jobs) but when we do these things to serve God, not man there is so much more to it.. When we do it to serve man.. well man benefits sure but where is your heart? Man can not save you God can.. and will

That your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God.

1 Corinthians 2:5
King James Version (KJV)

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

When to Worship

So I was reading my daily Bible verse that I get in my email 

King James Version (KJV)
But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him.

and it got me thinking.

When is the right time to worship God?? Is there a right time? 

Of course there is.. it's always the right time. Think about it. You are out on a gorgeous sunny day, just driving along.. all around you, you see God's creations.. Those amazing acts of God.. so yeah perfect time to worship..

Or wait, it is a dark and stormy night. The thunder is rolling the lightening is zapping across the sky.. Windows are rattling and God's power is displayed in your summer storm. How can we not take the time to Worship God's awesomeness?

You have a five minute break at work, things have been really hectic but finally a moment of peace.. wow.. you have a job and a few minutes peace.. yep, it's time to Worship God.

Your kid aced a test, made the winning goal.. or my favorite reason to celebrate.. you woke up today!! It's time to worship!! 


Saturday, August 17, 2013

And God Said Write

My life hasn't always been easy, in fact it has been down right difficult. But most of that is on me. Honestly, some of the choices I have made have been down right pathetic. And yet for the most part I don't regret those choices because they brought me here.. to this point right now. A place where I am finally listening..

Years ago, when my marriage was at it's worst. When It was all but over. I remember being down in the basement sobbing.. I literally slid down the washer to sit on the floor. I was crying out to God.. why my.. blah blah blah.. what can I do to change this and in response.. God said "WRITE".. Later when I would go to church and sit in the sanctuary, before service and spend some quiet time to myself.. preparing myself for service I would ask God what He wanted of me and I would hear a voice.. yep you guessed it God said "WRITE". When the pastor would be giving his sermon, I would hear it with two parts of my brain, one the lesson being taught and one the words I could write from it.. yep God was still speaking to me. When my life was at what I thought was it's lowest... when I contemplated suicide.. I begged God for an outlet and God said.. you guessed it "WRITE" 

There was not vagueness about this. I honestly swear I heard the voice of God telling me to write.. So what did I do? Well, I didn't write anything that's for sure. That would have made sense. I was like the man in the old joke.. There was a flood and he was sitting on his rooftop.. a man in a rowboat came by and asked if he needed help.. the man said "no, God will save me".. Later another man came by this time in a power boat and asked if he needed help and the man replied "no, God will save me". Finally a man came by in a helicopter and asked if he needed help and once again the man said.."no, God will save me". Needless to say he died, when he went to heaven he spoke with God.. He said "I had faith I believed in you and yet you didn't save me, why not?" And God said "I sent you a row boat, a power boat and a helicopter what more did you want?" That my friends was me.. 

God has given me the talent to be fulfilled. To serve Him by sharing His gift. I have always known that I have a skill for writing. There are always stories bouncing around in my head. My world is a truly unique place.. of course reality always manages to come crashing in.. but still.. why do those worlds remain in my head? Why do I refuse to sit still and let them escape? Who knows? Fear maybe? Laziness? Fear?.. lol.. yeah good old fear..

But my time has come.. God has said WRITE long enough.. the words dance on my tongue and demand to escape.. I may not be as talented as I thought but that doesn't matter.. God said WRITE and finally I am listening..