God Sees

Psalm 139:16 (MSG)

You know me inside and out,
    you know every bone in my body;
You know exactly how I was made, bit by bit,
    how I was sculpted from nothing into something.
Like an open book, you watched me grow from conception to birth;
    all the stages of my life were spread out before you,
The days of my life all prepared
    before I’d even lived one day.

One of the best things about making it to the top of a climb is the view.  After all that work of making it to the top,  the reward of looking out and over everything below makes me pause to soak it all in. It always gives me a sense of satisfaction, a sense of peace and sort of just takes my breath away.  The mountaintop is a glorious place but the journey to the mountaintop is really what makes the view so special.

This reminds me of my life.  Those times when I have had the blessing of being able to see the twists and turns in the valley below and how it all brought me to where I am.  Once I get to where I thought I wanted to be , I realize that the road along the way is where the heart of my story is … where my character was formed,  where my soul was realized , where I became a better me.

I realize my view is often limited, yet I know there is One that always has a view of my life.  That I have a God who not only just sees me but who has an all encompassing view over me and my life. Furthermore He has vision over me , He sees all that I am designed to be.  Each valley, each thicket of bushes, each river crossing, each path through the woods … it all serves a purpose and makes up the landscape of my life. It is all part of my story.

God , I know that I strive to have those mountaintop moments and  yes, they are special moments but help me to take joy along the way and trust that you see over me.  You have “thee” complete all encompassing panoramic view over me. I can trust and know that each step of my journey is part of the beautiful portrait that makes up my life with You.

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I belong to Him

1 John 4:4

“But you belong to God, my dear children. You have already won a victory over those people, because the Spirit who lives in you is greater than the spirit who lives in the world.”

The world tells me my worth is in my outside. Its based on my looks, how pretty I am, how physically in shape I am, or even as silly as my hair-do or how many followers I have on Twitter.  Or it’s in my skills, my talents, my giftings and abilities. It’s what I do. Or better yet it’s in my education, my profession, my income. It’s what I have.  Whether its how fit I am , how nice my home is, how successful I am or how educated I am , it is always a measurement of the outside.

It’s what is inside that matter most, right?

But if I am truly honest with myself my inside can be ugly. Maybe that is why we want to be known for our outside. People can’t see my insecurities, my jealousy, my anger, my resentment … and I really don’t want them to.  But God can. And He does.

God tells me he knows all those parts of me but loves me anyhow. He sees my insides – He sees it all. He doesn’t love me for what I do or don’t do, for what I think ,  for what I have or for any attribute at all … He just loves me. So yes He is most interested in my inside but despite my inside he loves me anyhow.

He is pure. He is light. He is love. He invites me into His presence based on nothing. He Himself pays the penalty for me. I am forgiven of every wrongful deed , every sour thought, every bitterness, every betrayal, every lie, everything …. everything.

This changes me … it changes my insides. It humbles me. It makes me grateful. It makes me want to follow Him, pursue Him, and live my life for Him.

This is grace. This is God.

The world will still be there and I will often feel like I don’t measure up according to it’s standards. There will always be someone prettier, richer, slimmer, smarter … but God tells me there is only one me , He created me , unique, special , and for a purpose … His purpose.

And He loves me , even adores me.

I do not belong to the world … I belong to Him.

And greater is He than that which is in the world.

Winter, Do your work in me.

Another morning.  I look out my window,  I see the tender green shoots budding on a tree. They remind me of new beginnings. Bright green and full of promise.  It has been a long winter here in New England. Cold. Wet. Grey days. Snow. Lots of snow. Lots and lots of snow.  Winter can be harsh. I want it to end. I think about the cool spring mornings, the first flowers that bloom , the sunny days when I can feel the warmth of the sun on my skin. I want to live in the Spring. Always. I would build a house there if I could.  Winter. Cold, Snowy Winter. The days are shorter, the nights are longer. It’s harder for me to get out of bed.  But oh in the Spring I wake up with the rising sun early in the morning, I look forward to hikes and bike rides and picnics. Oh glorious Spring. The birds chirp. The sky is blue. The grass is green. I could go on and on and on about Spring. Winter doesn’t harken to my heart the same way spring does. But God reminds me … Winter has it’s place and it is beautiful too. When it’s cold out , I tend to want to get cozy and warm , my pace slows down. It tend to be more still , to hibernate indoors. I may read a book, write in my journal, cook a pot of stew. It’s a more reflective time. A quieter time. Yes, Winter has it’s own purpose both in nature and in my soul. Rather than trying to rush through it and get to Spring I am asking God  to help me embrace Winter.  To see it’s beauty, in the cold, and in the piles of snow.  To not grow weary but to rather know and take solace that really without winter there would be no Spring. The cycles of life, the cycles of nature, the cycles of our souls , they are all the same. Each season brings about it’s own purpose and it’s own meaning.  So yes , the winter of my soul, I embrace you and take joy in you for God allows you to work out good things in me this I know.

PRAYER : Lord help me to not rush through the winter seasons in my life. Help me to know that in them a great work is being done so that I may actually rejoice and take joy in those seasons. Work out my faith in me Lord . I know these winter seasons will bring my life to new beginnings but help me to not rush through it. Let winter have it’s full season in me.  Let me TRUST in you – keep my FOCUS on you and  BELIEVE in you. Amen.

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Autumn Dance

Ecclesiastes 3:1
“For everything there is a season, and a time for every purpose under heaven”

The other day a friend and I shared a moment together, looking out a window and commenting on the spectacular beauty of Autumn. She shared a memory of her daughter. She was young, dancing in the falling leaves of the trees as she came home from school . As her mother, she would watch her walk up their drive with her young face full of wonder and light – that young innocence and joy – taking in the beauty and majesty of the fall season. They called it “letting go”. The trees would let go of their leaves and they would fall to the ground. When she shared this story with me it made me think of Fall as a wonderful illustration by God of surrender.

The trees let go and surrender their leaves. This process of surrender is a beautiful thing … the leaves change into glorious colors of reds, yellows, and oranges and then they ultimately drop and will be no more. Although the tree is naked and bare and the evidence of a coming winter is looming … the promise of Spring is also there. The trees give up and let go but in the Spring there will be blossoming and a new season of birth and new life.

Just like the seasons in nature , we have seasons in our lives . We will go through times of birth and creation where everything is alive and new. We will also go through seasons of surrender , when we let go and that is most often followed by a winter. We may feel cold and naked but just like the trees “know” spring is around the corner … we can take promise in that too.

Whatever we let go of and surrender ,the death of that will give light to something new. What a beautiful thought to think of letting go of something like the trees that let go of their leaves in the fall. To think that we might, like my friend’s daughter, even dance in the leaves that fall and take glory in the process.

Thank you Lord for your truth that you speak into our lives through your words and through your creation … that we might know your promises in the evidence of who you are all around us. Each season has a time and reason both in nature and within our lives … help us to grab on to this truth.

autumn-dance

A moment of brutal honesty

Take heed my child, the time is coming. You are called to be a light unto this world … do not hide yourself. You are coming to know my ways and seeing that my ways are higher than the ways of the world. Do not slumber, do not take refuge in the things of this world. Do not take refuge in your home, your accomplishments, your degrees, your 401K plans, your vacations, the schools you send your child to, the neighborhood you live in … these things in and of themselves are not bad things but you who set your mind on these things and make your life path for and about these things … surely you will suffer, you will perish. You will experience pain and death. Life exists in me … not in what you can do and what you have and what you accomplish while here on this earth. For I tell you there is much more to be done in this world than the smallness of what kind of home you have and what title you hold and how many likes you get on facebook. People don’t know me, people are suffering, people are starving, people are being abused, raped, and killed and thrown away as trash and No it is not your doing these things but if you do nothing to help the broken, the lost, those who have not … you are their perpetrator as much as the person holding the knife to their back … for you busy your mind with thoughts of success, of body image, of cars and homes and your goals while you watch the innocent die and suffer and think “well what can I do?” what can I do but work as hard as I can? … and feel like an empty shell, and run myself from one thing to the next trying to fill myself up with some purposeless void to come to the end and realize it is all for nothing … it is all just a twisted lie and what the enemy would have us believe is real. What is real? God is real. Love is real. Your neighbor is real. You fill your mind and your heart and your life with this and then you will be building a title for yourself in heaven that nothing on this earth can compare to … for you will be called His. His ambassador . So you are saved … what is next? Do you want your life to count for the Kingdom of God and do His work? Or will your sleep and slumber and fill your mind with the idle chatter or the world? It’s up to you … every day … every moment … you make a choice. Will it be God ? Will you choose God? Your creator, the one who died for you? What will you choose? It’s up to you. Hell is a place we send ourselves to , God created us all to live in heaven with Him.

Out of the Dust

Genesis 2:7
Then the LORD God formed a man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being.
We were created out of dust as living, breathing miracles of life. The circumstances of our lives may also sometimes seem like “dust”, BUT God has the power, the ability, the creativity to breathe creation and life into our “dust”. Whatever the dust may be in your life today … know that your God is a God who creates miracles out of dust.
What an amazing truth to let settle into our bones!

God Please Say …

GOD PLEASE SAY ….

Genesis 1:3 – “And God said let there be light”

Since my son could very first put words together and pray … he has always said something that I thought was pretty dang cute and special. When he asks something of God in his prayers he will pray “God please say … “. Routinely he prays for his two older sisters who have two homes, one with us and one with their mom in another state. “God please say that Taren and Madi are safe and please say that you will watch over them and help them”.
My son’s prayers completely cute and precious also have so much innocent wisdom. As I read Genesis this morning I am reminded of how God SPOKE the heavens and earth into existence. I am reminded of the awesome power of God . I am reminded of the awesome power of His words. I am reminded that the same God that spoke the heavens and earth into existence speaks into each of our own individual lives. I am reminded that His words are mighty and bring life. I am reminded that what He creates is good.
“God please say” … these three little beautiful words from a child carry so much faith. The faith that God has the power to use His words to create what is good in each of our lives.
Just as God spoke and created the earth and heavens into existence …. He desires to create what is good in each of our lives through His powerful word. Grab onto His word and let Him speak into your life.