Saturday, January 12, 2013

With you & for you

What, then, shall we say in response to this? If God is for us, who can be against us? ~ Romans 8:31

God is with us AND for us. Are there any sweeter words? 

As we align our will with God's will, we can accomplish anything. We do need to remember that while He promises to be with us, He doesn't promise an easy road.

I needed this reminder. 

I've been slack when it comes to Mending Hearts. I'll be honest. I expect it to just be easy. Everything just fall into place. Doors open. Ta dah! A la peanut butter & jelly sandwiches. POOF!

But it isn't going to be that way. I am going to meet resistance, especially because it's God's will. The enemy certainly doesn't want to see anyone succeed at God's will. Nothing will stop us, but Satan will certainly try. 

Do not be discouraged. Be still and rest in the knowledge that God is God and He is in control.

Yeah - I know. I need to focus on that. Focus on what God wants - not whether it'll be easy for me. Nothing worthwhile is going to be easy. Hard work is what's needed.

The devotion for January 9th was PERFECT for this. It reminds me to slow down. Enjoy the journey; let God lead the way. 

It should be like that for my entire life - not just parts of it. Give my entire life to Him. Not just bits & pieces. Giving Him total control of my life - I'll admit. It's scary. It's a total control thing for me. But I know that when I DO relinquish control to Him, life is SO much better. I can honestly sit back, take a deep breath, and know that HE is in control.

When I really stop & think about it... allowing God to have total control gives me a greater peace. Yet why do I choose to keep thinking I need to be in control? Simply because I am human. 

I'll be honest - its times like this when I hate my human-ness. I would love to just say that I put ALL my trust in Him. That nothing bothers me. That I rest in Him. Most of the time it is true. But again, I am still human and there will be times where I take my troubles back.

Be blessed dear friends.....

Many blessings,

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Tuesday's ponderings

While I truly feel God speaking to me through music, I have decided to be more intentional with daily devotions. As much as I love books, I have decided to try an app. Since I have been wanting to buy the "Jesus Calling" book, I opted to download the free app (I may purchase the full app at some point, but this will be good to get my feet wet).

Today's topic - God being able to handle ALL of our expectations.

To me - that's powerful. Of course, He wants us to come to Him with our positive expectations, but He also wants us to come to Him when we are heavy hearted. Sometimes our unanswered prayers are simply lessons. Lessons for us to learn to wait upon Him, to TRUST Him - not only in the light of our day, but in the darkness as well.

I find it SO easy to praise Him when things are going well. Throw up a quick THANK YOU GOD! I mean, how can you not. When a friend does something wonderful for you, how simple is it to just say "thank you". Yet, its in those moments where I feel alone. In my darkness. Those are the times where I can't see past the pain. But God wants me to run to Him. I should thank Him. Not because I am suffering, but because I know that He is in control - simply because He loves me.

Today's devotion said:

"The more extreme your circumstances, the more likely you are to see My Power and Glory at work in the situation." ~ January 6th, Jesus Calling by Sarah Young.

Ok - so as I typed the above quote I realized I read the wrong day. Oh well - God gave me a lesson & I'm running with it.

As I look back on my life, my story, I can see exactly when God was glorified by my circumstances. No, I am not saying He wanted me to suffer and endure the hurt. I truly believe He grieved WITH me. Instead, I rest in the knowledge that He can use those events to show His goodness & mercy.

For today, I will try to thank Him in the good and bad. Just because something doesn't go my way, doesn't mean it didn't go the way it was supposed to go. Instead, I need to simply accept the outcome. I will meditate on Ephesians 3:20-21:

Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.

Many blessings,

Monday, January 7, 2013

Heart & Mind

I am not a marriage expert. My marriage is not perfect. There are days where I do things right and then days where I am a complete mess up.

One thing I am always saying is 'I wish we knew.... before we got married." Learning those lessons wouldn't have stopped me from getting married, but I do think they might have helped with some of the speed bumps we've encountered through the years.

The Mayor and I have decided to take time off from being small group leaders for couples. I'll be honest. I feel guilty for not feeling guilty about the decision. We truly needed the time off. We need to reconnect with one another, with our family, with ourselves. We can't be effective small group leaders if we don't fill ourselves up.

Yet, marriage has been on my heart & mind. Marriage in America is in a crisis. People use marriage as something disposable. Don't like the person, life getting tough - divorce. Don't get me wrong - I've been there. I've said it. I've contemplated it.

The Mayor & I dated for over 3 years before getting engaged. We were engaged for over a year before getting married. We did not live together until we said I DO.

We have been married for 15 years. We have fought our way to this point. There were definitely times where we wanted to throw in the towel. Today we are thankful that we stuck together and fought the battle. Every day is a battle. It is SO easy to become complacent. To just take advantage of one another. To take advantage that our spouse will always be there.

When we go back to leading a small group in August, I seriously think we should consider investing in marriages. Either new marriages or established marriages. That I'm not sure. But I do believe that God is leading us to this point. We have a lot to offer couples. We have so much to learn.

This is my heart & mind.....

Many blessings,

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Hurricane love

My last post talked about the dark place I was in. I'm not saying that I am no longer there - I'm just saying I can now see the light at the end of the tunnel.

I haven't been able to get the song "How He Loves" by David Crowder Band out of my head lately. It is such a simple song lyrically, but oh so powerful!!

He is jealous for me,
Loves like a hurricane, I am a tree,
Bending beneath the weight of His wind and mercy.
When all of a sudden,
I am unaware of these afflictions eclipsed by glory,
And I realize just how beautiful You are,
And how great Your affections are for me.

One can look back at their life, look at all the negative and think that God has deserted them. That they were broken. And maybe, in some cases, they were.. but for the most part, we bend to the situation and learn to adapt - much like trees in a hurricane.

I'm not saying that trees don't fall down or get uprooted during a storm. But for every tree that does fall, hundreds others sway and bend in the wind. Adapting to their surroundings so that they can survived.

God doesn't want to break us. It's not about OUR will, but HIS will. Jesus teaches us to pray "THY WILL BE DONE". Instead of focusing on the bad, I want to focus on what do I need to learn from this. God has my best interest at heart. He loves me... He loves you!

This isn't the official video of the song, but I love the visual.

Many blessings,