No Way Satan!

When you reach the point you’re ready to give in, to give up, to call it quits, to move on and no, I’m not talking about marriage, although it could apply.  It doesn’t matter what the situation is really, the answer is the same:

Buck up sister and keep going!

This isn’t the time for sympathy or pity.  The situation we are in requires action, reaction, or even non-action.  How we handle the situation, what we do, and how we react is up to us.  The situation is definitely within our control.  So we have two choices:

We can let give in to the lies of the evil one who want to see the work of Jesus Christ crumble because he HATES Jesus.  He hates His Name.  And he hates those of us who are a part of Him.

OR

We can turn around and slap Satan in the face and tell him, “No way!”

No way are you going to destroy what Jesus has patiently worked so hard to do in our life.

No way are you going to destroy what the Holy Spirit has been doing in our heart.

No way are you going to destroy what the Father has been doing in His work in His Church for His Kingdom.

So the choice is up to us.  We can wallow in self pity and doubt and discouragement and let Satan feel he has the victory….

OR

We can immerse ourselves in the Word of God, fall on our face before Him, cry out to our Father, pick ourselves up and give God the victory He deserves!

So let’s go already!

Amen?

Amen!

It’s Not For You

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

Sometimes I forget why I do what I do.  I’m like everyone else.  I want people to like me.  I don’t want to be the one around the cooler being talked about unless it’s to say, “Gee, that Amy’s a pretty nice gal.”

But this song was shared this morning by my niece.  I had “heard” it before, but today I really heard it.  Every diaper I have changed, every spanking I have given, every doughnut I have purchased, every kiss I have  given, every card I have written, every song I sing, every hand I raise, every word I write, every Word I read….

It isn’t for you.

It’s for Him.

And for that I don’t ever need to apologize unless what I do does not bring glory to Him.  So I will never please everyone, we shouldn’t even try.  Our audience is much smaller….

And SO much bigger….

Than that. Because He first loved me, He will be my first love.

So I sang along this morning with this song and I wept.  For worrying about things that are out of my control.  For limiting my BIG God to a tiny box.  For expecting humans to have some heavenly quality that only satisfies my needs and my expectations.  Forgive me, Lord.

You are so much bigger than that.

Our God is Greater..

God loves me.  How much?  Enough to send His only Son to die for me.

Me.  Just a product of a fallen Adam and a fallen Eve.  A product of a flawed school system and imperfect parents who knew they were imperfect and thus had a need of a Savior.

Sounds pretty depressing, huh?  Ah, but then comes the redemption! The heart of the story!  The pulse to the life!  The point at which the light of the gospel came to earth knowing the plan and came anyway!

And yet here I sit.  Worrying that maybe, just maybe, He isn’t aware of what’s going on around me.

I’m pretty sure the Savior of the world who cares enough to number the hairs on my head and my days, who left His heavenly throne to give me eternal life, and who allows me to feel His presence….I’m pretty sure He’s aware of my tiny little circumstance.  And  I’m pretty sure He wants me to get over myself.  To live for more.  To live for Him.

“When I think of my salvation experience, I think of being delivered from sin and gaining personal holiness.  But salvation is so much more!  It means that the Spirit of God has brought me into intimate contact with the true Person of God Himself…

To say that we are called to preach holiness or sanctification is to miss the main point.  We are called to proclaim Jesus Christ.”

Oswald Chambers

Time to take my temperature.  Am I spending too much time worrying about and pointing out people’s sin?  Or pointing them to Christ?

 

Be Part of the Resistance

There’s a simple sermon to be preached: “Resist the devil and he will flee from you.”

Whatever sin you are entangled in: sexual immorality, gossip, pride, hate, prejudice, addiction, disrespect, bitterness, anger…there’s a cure for that.

“Resist the devil and he will flee from you.”

Whatever low down feeling you have of yourself right now: guilt, self disrespect, self loathing, unworthiness…there’s a cure for that.

“Resist the devil and he will flee from you.”

He’s not going to go away if we let him stay.  He’s sure not going to go away if we give him a place at our table, a seat on our sofa, a bed in our spare room.  He’s going to make himself an honored guest and just like the landlords in Pacific Heights (a movie I watched a long time ago lol), getting him out won’t be nearly as easy as letting him in.

So before he makes himself at home in your life…

“RESIST the devil and he will flee from you.”

“Resist the DEVIL and he will flee from you.”

“Resist the devil and he WILL flee from you.”

“Resist the devil and he will flee from YOU!”

To Everything There is a Season

What a twisty turn of events today was.  At 11:00 we laid a sweet friend to rest after his courageous battle with cancer.  It is sad to say good bye but yet it was a joyous occasion.  There was the talk of hope that we will see him again and we will all have our resurrected bodies some day.  There was talk of hope that his faith has now become sight as he sees Jesus face to face.  There was hope as we sang “Trading My Sorrows.”  There was rejoicing and laughter as we fellowshipped together over delicious love-prepared food.  There was love and laughter through hugs with his family.

And at the same time we were weeping tears of sorrow another good friend of mine was weeping tears of joy as she met a sister no one (including her dad) knew she had for the first time! Now this woman, my friend’s sister, who has no parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles or siblings has found a new family with seven siblings, nieces, and nephews.  And my friend’s entire family, including her mother, are overjoyed to welcome this new sibling into their life!

Ah, God’s plans are amazing.  We need to constantly be reminded that time is an earthly concept (created by God, of course) out of God’s realm.  He doesn’t work in seconds, minutes, hours, days, weeks, months, or years.  He works in God time.

And to everything there is a season.

Just 99 Days to Go

My 13-year-old has challenged me to join her in writing 100 words for 100 days.  Sounds easy.  I mean, I LOVE to talk.  I LOVE to write too!   But with writing comes a commitment issue. Amidst my day of teaching American Government, Physical Science, and Phonics I have hundreds of ideas running through my brain.  Things I want to say that NEED to get out!  But then when I think about sitting down to put them on paper…well, that’s another concept altogether.  Because when I have a spare 42 minutes, let me tell ya I’m thinking a hot cup of joe and an episode of “Emergency!”

Amazingly, though, this simple paragraph above already put me at my 100-word goal for today!

The fantastic thing about a blog rather than sitting across the table from me is you can click that little red X in the corner to shut. me. up!

So, I hope you’ll join me over the next 99 days as I seek to share about my life growing up, as a preacher’s kid, my love story, how God sustained my husband through some hairy experiences in the military and law enforcement, and a general day-to-day synopsis of our boring but blessed beyond belief life! And my highest goal is that you will see Jesus seeping out through every word! For it is only by His grace I even woke up on this earth this morning!

The Boots at the End of My Bed

There’s a pair of boots at the end of my bed

They aren’t turquoise, lime green, or fire engine red

They aren’t for splashing in puddles or stomping through the snow

They aren’t for looking fashionable, for heaven’s sakes, no.

They carry with them a burden, sometimes heavy, sometimes light

To stand up for the least of these to always do what’s right.

They carry to a place that many would dare not go

They carry heavy feet and legs to sometimes communicate woe

But the boots at the end of my bed aren’t always a sorrowful thing

Sometimes they carry feet and legs that have a happy spring

A rescued child, a spouse thought lost, an accident victim now safe

A word of thanks, a wave, a smile or a gift card to his favorite place

I’m thankful for the pair of boots at the end of my bed

They carry daily the man I love under whose direction I am led

And now I pray for those wives filled with sorrow whose memories fill their head

Who would give anything for a chance to see the man in the boots at the end of her bed.

First Day of First Grade Fail

This picture just makes me chuckle.  Because it is such a joke!  LOL

I think about how we present our lives on Facebook and what is reality.  Earlier I posted an adorable picture of my little guy doing his spelling. Looks great, huh?  In reality we had a stinky first day of first grade.  Not because I didn’t do MY part mind you.  I was up an hour early doing MY thing.

To start it off, I had to leave for a funeral at 9:15.  I made tapioca and raspberries which he didn’t like.  I had to rush out before I forced it down him or made him something else.  By the time I got home he was knee deep in Lincoln Logs.  No problem, that is a great learning tool all round. But when it was time for some seat work, trust me it’s minimal, he  fidgeted, chatted, whined and cried through it all except math and history, which I read WHILE he played Lincoln Logs.  He didn’t write out all his spelling words, what he did was super sloppy, and we never even got to Phonics! I was sure it would happen after supper.  But then Daddy had to drop our dog off about 40 miles away and guess who wanted to ride along?

So, there is nothing fabulous to share about our first day of first grade.  I can’t tell you how amazing it was, how much fun it was, and how MUCH I am looking forward to doing it again tomorrow.  And if all home schoolers were honest, we’d all admit we have those days.  There are days you want to throw in the towel.  Now, mind you, I don’t want to put him on the big yellow bus, but THOSE days I do want to sit him in front of Netflix.  All. day. Long. Guilt free.

But, I can tell you this….I will do it again. Because tomorrow is a new day and thankfully His mercies are NEW every MORNING!

Sisters in Time

I am super excited about this year’s 8th grade history.  We are ditching the textbook this year and learning from “fictional” living history.  I found this great “Sisters in Time” series and we will cover 1620-1862 this year.  I am working my way through the books, which I am thoroughly enjoying myself, compiling review questions which my daughter can answer in her notebook, as well as add any thoughts, ideas, character reviews, drawings, or cut outs that will enhance her memory of the text and bring the history to life.

I have broken down each of the three books (which contain four smaller books about four different girls inside) into a three-month plan so we will be reading and notebooking about 180 pages per month.

I will let you know how it goes!

Broken and Beautiful

I’m just a sinner saved by grace.

News flash.  I am flawed.  Sorry, but so are you.  I am redeemed, bought and paid for, and changed from who I used to be.  Personal holiness is something I strive for but something I will not attain until I am new in the kingdom:

Behold!  I tell you a mystery.  We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet.  For the trumpet will sound and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed.  For this perishable body must put on the imperishable, and this mortal body must put on immortality…

I Corinthians 15:51-54

So how come we expect each other to be perfect?  Instead of looking for the growth in one another and the steps toward holiness, we are honed in on the negative, the area that God is still working on.  Maybe THAT’S our area God is still working on.

Hey, like I said, I’m flawed.  I don’t have this down. It is always easier to see the negative than the positive.  And I’m not saying there aren’t times we need to point out those negatives for the spiritual growth of a fellow sister in Christ.  Maybe they don’t know their behavior is speech is displeasing to the Lord. We can love them through it.  Sometimes, they do know their behavior is displeasing but they either 1) aren’t truly saved or 2) have bigger fish to fry in putting off their old self before they get to that sin.

Ah, if only it were all so simple.  Wait. Maybe it is.  Immersing ourselves in the Word of God is a good place to start. Personal prayer time is another. Sitting under good biblical teaching is another. Spending time in fellowship with other believers is another.  Being able to accept accountability is another. Personal worship on a daily basis is another.

Remember those two greatest commandments?  ”And He said to him, ‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul, and with all your mind.  This is the great and first commandment.  And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ “

If we can follow these two commandments all the others are taken care of. Hard?  Yep.  I struggle every day.  Worth it?  Oh yeah. And it isn’t murder, stealing, or coveting my neighbor’s husband I struggle with.  It’s hanging up the phone when I want to listen or tell something I shouldn’t. It’s responding to my kids in a firm but loving tone rather than the sarcastic sweetness I so often choose.  It’s giving grace to my husband who put his clothes in the wrong laundry basket.  Again. It’s not rolling my eyes when my husband suggests something ridiculous.  It’s not making a sarcastic comment to my daughter about her messy room.  It’s not complaining to someone…about someone else.  Phew.  How do I make it through a day without being on my knees 17 hours (thankful 7 hours are spent sleeping!)?

His mercies are new every morning!  Praise the Lord! So if I blow it today, I can start fresh tomorrow.  And tomorrow.  And tomorrow.

Happy Monday! Now go out there and bless someone!