Category: hope

My brothers and sisters in Iraq, my faith

I am frustrated….I am angry and I am concerned….
I haven’t talked about the situation in Iraqthrough a blog yet….it grieves me deeply, on a level deeper than September 11th 2001.
I am a Christian….and I have the ability to freely pronounce this without fearing for my life or the lives of my children because I am an American citizen and thank God that my right to freedom of religion is protected through our Constitution.
You see….the people in Iraqthat are losing their lives because of their faith, are my brothers and sisters in Christ. I know it sounds “cheesy” but it’s the only right way to phrase it. If you aren’t a Christian you just won’t get it….it’s sad and horrific news to most but to me and to other believers it’s gut wrenching.
The Christians in Iraq did not die in vain….and I’d be a fool and hypocrite to not honor them if I remained silent about my faith……

I accepted Christ years ago when I was a child, I was four years old, I lived in Macon, GA at the time and I remember being in my bedroom, alone, looking out the window and asking Jesus to come live in my heart. At that moment, I didn’t “feel” anything, but I became part of a body of believers, I was baptized in the Holy Spirit at the age of 10 years old, but it wasn’t until I was in high school that I really came into a relationship with Jesus…that is….I wanted to know him….. I greatly desired to know him and I found him. I experienced the almighty presence of God at a youth retreat up in the mountains of Colorado. It was such a powerful encounter that I could not stand…..my knees buckled under the heaviness that I encountered….a love that I had never known hit me like a Tidal wave. The creator of the universe gave me a tiny ounce of what it was like to be in His presence and I have never been the same.
I found truth and the truth I found is the most beautiful thing to ever exist. I had so many questions….so many things I wanted answered… like -why do bad things happen to good people? Is healing for everyone? What is the will of God? Is Jesus the only way to salvation?
I got answers. I found them in the words that Jesus himself gave us…the Bible. If there was ever a time to cling to what is in that book…it’s now. Anyone can read it….but when the Holy Spirit dwells in you and is active in you…it becomes alive. I wanted to know this truth in every realm of my life, I began to understand more and more, the more time I spent seeking the truth.
You see we are not powerless victims here on this earth wandering about aimlessly…. We have been given the same authority that Jesus had when he walked on this earth. That’s why Jesus came, the power didn’t die with him…it was passed on to us. That it why Jesus told us to go and do the same!
I’ll be the first to admit that I am imperfect. My faith is still growing, I have good days and I have bad days….trust me, I haven’t “arrived”….I am challenged daily –but I have truth to hold onto. I do know people that are stronger than me spiritually and those are the ones I turn to when I need counsel, incite and advice.
My heart is in mourning for my brothers and sisters in Iraq. I have had many restless days and nights over this situation, many questions I want answered, many things I want God to show me…..but I know this, there is power in prayer. There is power when Christians unite. I have first handedly witnessed miracles in my life. I have seen sick people healed; I have watched broken lives made whole again and I know I serve a GOOD God. What these terrorist can’t take is the Spirit. We are essentially a spirit, we have a soul and we live in a body.
Ephesians 6:12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.
I know who the enemy is and I know what 1John 4:4 says- “The one who is in me (Jesus) is greater than the one who is in the world.”
I am still on a journey in my Faith. But I think it’s important to share it. I think we have to, as Christians, begin speaking out and speaking up. When all is said and done….your eternity and the eternity of your loved ones is what matters.
    The truth shall set you free. I am free.

Do not fear

 
 
 
I don’t even know where to begin. My heart is heavy….
 
Our world is in such distress and conflict.
 
We’ve got North Korea saying they are determined to nuke the US.
Russia attacking innocent Ukrainian civilians, and shooting down commercial airliners.  
A major humanitarian crisis on our countries southern borders, with illegal immigrants flooding into our country….
A complete lack and reverence for our Constitution from our leaders. 
Christians in Iraq being murdered because they are refusing to renounce their faith in Jesus.
A terrorist organization known as Hamas, vowing to annihilate the country of Israel (our only ally in the middle-east) and using innocent Palestinians to do it. Telling Palestinians not to leave their location knowing that it will be a target in a most likely deadly attack, and then using propaganda to fuel their cause.
The terrorist group Boko Haram in Africa, killing Christians, and they have yet to return the hundreds of girls that were kidnapped months ago…which started the trendy hash-tag campaign #Bringbackourgirls (and of course the mainstream media has fallen silent on this story…..)
 
I have never witnessed such division in our country as well….political parties causing such divisiveness and a president flaming this fire.
 
I’d love to say that it’s all going to get better….that this is just a bad dream and we’ll wake up and all will be well.
I am a mom, I ask myself everyday what kind of world are my kids going to grow up in? Will they be safe? What does their future look like? It’d be great to have the ability to not think about it all….but I know people like that….people who really don’t show concern….and I can’t relate to them….
 
I am gravely concerned.
 
The only thing that brings me peace is my hope and faith.
 
I know that my children were born for such a time as this. They have a specific calling on their lives, no life is an accident….God says that he knew us before we were formed in our mother’s womb.
 
Even if it does get crazier…more insane…we are equipped because we have Jesus.
 
Years ago when I was living in Los Angeles, I had the words “Hebrews 13:5″ tattooed on my wrist the passage is: “I will never leave you or forsake you” -that is a promise God made to me, to all of us. At the time it meant so much to me but it means even more now.  
 
My husband reads a ton…more than almost anyone I have ever known. He is reading everything he can get his hands on right now about the wars our country has fought. He told me that the Marines primary prayer is Psalm 23. It’s amazing how scripture rings true throughout history. There is no beginning or end to its relevance in our lives.
 
The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.
He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.
Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.
Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.
 
With all the chaos in the world…..there is something that does not change…..something that is the same as it was yesterday, today and forever more….Jesus and his words to us. It’s easy for it all to get cloudy…right vs. wrong, good vs. evil, the world is becoming more and more gray…..
 
It’s easy to get off course….to question direction….
Our anchor in the storm has to be the bible. The bible is the compass we were given in a lost world. If it’s not in the words we were given…..question it. Thank God we have this though! I believe that No words are divine unless they are found in the scriptures. Remember this when the wind starts to blow…. 
No matter what happens, what may come, what lies ahead….do not fear. We are more than conquerors in Christ Jesus. In the end….all will bow all will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord….
 
 

Random array of thoughts…

  

My little baby girl is 8months old today. I honestly don’t know where the time has gone-she is all baby-chunky thighs, big blue eyes and a bald head-kissable from head to toe!
After nursing her before laying her down to sleep last night, she reached for my face as she so often does, grabbing at my nose, clawing at my eyes in total curiosity all the while blowing bubbles with her new found lips and tongue.
I thought to myself….so much is ahead of this little girl…so much life to be lived.
She grabs my face with both hands and smiles as if she knows my thoughts.
If only she knew….
But no- I want her to be a baby, a toddler, a child as long as possible.
I want her to delight in every moment….without a care in the world.
So many thoughts, inside my head….
I know now why Jesus spoke of a desire for us to be childlike. To trust in him like my children undoubtedly trust in me.
My children don’t worry. They never question where their next meal is coming from, or where they’ll sleep that night. When my two year old falls or gets an ‘owie’ I am there. When my children are sick…I am there to ease the pains.

That’s what God desires from me. To just trust that he will be there, like a child.  Adulthood forces logic on the mind, and with that doubts. But God is beyond logic…He is not limited by logic…He surpasses it. He doesn’t want me to solve the issues, he wants me to trust that He will move on my behalf. He wants me to cast my cares, concerns, worries, doubts onto Him-not because I can’t handle it (though often I feel like I can’t) but because God CAN handle it.
I have found that life is full of opportunities to deepen our spiritual journey. Many choose to stay on the surface-but I want to know more.

I want truth beyond logic.

I was promised if I seek, I will find….

Seeking…

She’s one in seven billon.

Too often we celebrate those that have contributed little and the ones that have contributed so greatly-go unnoticed. I want to take a moment to introduce you to one of the most admirable woman I know.
Last night, I celebrated the birthday of the most incredible, amazing, strong, creative, God fearing, conservative woman I know-my mother.
I never really understood the role of a mother until I became one. I knew it entailed a lot of work and sacrifice but I really hadn’t a clue.
There are few women in this world that I whole heartedly admire and my mother abides at the very top.
I am one of seven children. Number two in the ranking order…but never once did I feel like a number.
My mother is the most real and genuine person I have ever known. She is the same person in public that she is behind closed doors.
She can make anything from scratch when cooking, sew, paint elaborate murals, landscape, lay a brick driveway, put up a fence, build a pond, and stay up all night in prayer time and time again.
When I was growing up, I’d come downstairs and she’d have a coffee in one hand and her bible in the other. She has always taught me -that you can’t build your faith in the midst of a storm-you have got to build your faith when the waters are calm.
My mother always was available to talk to-I remember in high school and college having ‘drama’ and I was able to talk freely with her-no judgments-
My mother exudes a natural beauty, her hair dark and so are her eyes. She has the ability to discern a persons intentions before they can utter a word. She is honest. She cannot tell a lie, so much so that I knew the truth about wonderful ole St. Nick at a very young age cause truth was more important to her than anything. There was no magic missed at Christmas for me because she told the most magical story to us all in her daily walk-the powerful redeeming true story of Jesus.
My mother has been in the hospital room for both of my children’s births. She is a calming force that gave me strength when I felt like I had none left.
My mom has never been a ‘chatty cathy’ or surrounded herself with acquaintances to avoid loneliness. She has no fear of silence and has taught me to be still in the chaos of life.
She has never sought the world for approval or needed reassurance from the crowd.
There is no hidden agenda with my mom. What you see is what you get.
My mother believes that every human life is valuable. She sees beauty in the ugly and I aspire to make her proud.
I love her with all my heart and this world is a better place with her in it.
I truly believe we will be surprised when we get to heaven on who is awarded greatness in the eyes of our  Father in heaven….and after all, isn’t that what it’s all about.