"Love is not love which alters when it alteration finds . . ." Wm Shakespeare

Friday, January 27, 2012

What kind of life do you live?

I sleep in a small bed, it’s known as a ¾ bed. The funny thing is, I sleep only on one side when I could sleep in the middle or all over the whole bed.

It reminded me of how as Christians we have all the resources of Almighty God, how we are blessed with every spiritual blessing and are the King’s Kids and yet we live such small lives hemmed in on all sides by fear till we are barely living at all.

We’re afraid of being too prideful so we don’t want to do ‘that’, or we don’t want to think more highly of ourselves than we ought, or we don’t want to offend anyone, the list goes on and on. So we end up defaulting to a false humility or justifying our lives and end up being such passive people, barely existing when Jesus died on the cross, gave His whole life to save us not just from hell and eternal separation from God, but to give us an abundant life!

Fear and failure both ask us to believe in something that hasn’t yet happened and may never happen and which does not tangibly exist. To give in to fear is to consent to paralysis and that is no testimony to the life Jesus died to give us.

Let us throw off every encumbrance and embrace the life which is ours when we dare to stare down fear and move on in faith that God is who He said He is and has done what He said He has done.

This is one of my favorite quotes, I hope you are encouraged by it also.

Blessings from a Girl on a Journey . . .

"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate,

Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.

It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us.

We ask ourselves,

“Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented and fabulous?”

Actually, who are you not to be?

You are a child of God.

Your playing small doesn’t serve the world.

There’s nothing enlightened about shrinking

So that others people won’t feel insecure around you.

We were born to manifest the glory of God that is within us…

And as we let our own light shine,

We unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.

As we are liberated from our own fear,

Our presence automatically liberates others."

. . . . Nelson Mandela

A Very Personal God

I just read Psalm 139 as per the 40 day challenge I'm doing at church and this stood out to me . . .
Vs. 5 ". . . and laid Your hand upon me"
Vs. 10 "even there Your hand will lead me, and Your right hand will lay hold of me".

When god created the earth, stars, waters of the deep, He SAID and it was created, but Psalm 139 tells me that when it comes to our relationship with Him, it is vastly personal and He touches us with His hand!
He leads us with His hand!
He is a very personal God who talks with us, guides us, never ever leaves us (vs 7-9; 15-16) and has compassion for us. He LOVES us with an everlasting love!

No matter where we find ourselves, whatever circumstances come against us, God is there, He sees, He knows; vs. 4 "even before there is a word on my tongue, behold O Lord, You know it all".

This God is a wonderful God who has never left us after He created us and will never leave us. He came looking for Adam and Eve in the garden; Gen 3:9 "Then the Lord God called to the man and said to him, 'Where are you?'. He comes looking for us too and He wants relationship with us, He wants our companionship, He wants to spend time with us.

I think of all the gods man has created and here is the difference . . . man has created something out of wood, ivory, bronze, gold (you name it) and worships the impersonal, non-communicative object, whereas God created MAN and is very personal (just read Psalm 139) and He communicates with us. And, this is the thing that makes me chuckle at the futility of it all, man creates his gods out of things God created in the first place!

We are such silly creatures!!

Years ago man worshipped the sun, the moon and stars. Today man worships fame, reputation, other people, money and possessions. Some religions even worship dead people by giving them the title Saint with a capital "S". Man even places the worth of animals above the worth of humanity!

We reverence our own selves, doing our own thing, having our own space which we are careful to protect. We worship the hobbies that waste our time, having that perfect lawn; slaves to the grass God created.

We are slaves to our children in giving in to all their demands for the latest and greatest, slaves to shopping for the latest toy, slaves to what others think of us and slaves to work; we just call ourselves workaholics and somehow manage to make it sound like we are something great because we give so much time and attention to make that business something to be respected in the business world.

None of these things is bad in it's own, we make it that way by giving it too much of our attention and thereby neglecting the things that are more worthy of our time.

I wonder why? I figure it's because we find our own self-worth in producing a beautifully put together home, that perfect lawn and gardens for all to see and that successful business.
But our relationships with God and others are woefully neglected, to our shame and to our own detriment because our self-worth is only found in relationship with God.

So, rather than lifting our self-worth up, we've brought ourselves low by this neglect.

The more I spend time developing my relationship with God, the more I see it as the ultimate relationship that gives life to me and every other relationship I have. It's the relationship that gives ultimate, lasting satisfaction and gives my whole life meaning.

Apart from that I flounder through life.

I pray a blessing on you in your own journey of building that most vital relationship with the God who created YOU. It's the one relationship you will ever have that causes all other relationships to deepen and the only one that makes sense in this crazy world.

Blessings from this Girl on her own Journey of Life

Sunday, January 22, 2012

My Outward Life . . . .

Last evening I attended a 50th birthday party of a friend. Her children planned the event and it went off without a hitch. It was a wonderful thing to see how much effort her children put into this party to show their Mom how much she meant to them.

What their actions did was to show honour and give glory to her, which is a good reputation. They highly esteemed her publicly.

So, as a Christian, does my life bring honour and glory to my Father? Do I highly esteem Him as publicly as those children did their Mother last night? Or do I live my life in my own safe little circle and stay quiet when I'm out in public?

Those children last night didn't know everyone who was at the party, but that didn't stop them from showing everyone their love.

God is so much more a Father, perfect in every way, in ways that we can ever be as earthly parents, so why is it so challenging to show the world how much I love God by my every action?

Have I conformed so much to the worlds standard that I've not noticed how the little actions of my life have compromised my Christ-following life into one of insignificance and mediocrity?

How do I daily live as a Christ follower? How do I show the world how much I love Him, or more important how much He loves me??

Living Loved is the thing that will change the lives of people living in dark hopelessness, yet I'm not shouting it out in the marketplace. Why is that?

It's something I've been thinking about and have come up with a few answers for myself. It's something each of us as Christ followers have to ponder and deal with on our own as each ones list will be an individual list.

I know I was affected by the open display of love those kids had for their Mom and it prompted this question which I've just shared with you.

Blessings to you as you follow Christ, not only in the big things, but in the daily grind of life in an imperfect world. I believe as we choose to follow Christ in all the little things, the daily grind will become less grinding and more full of peace and joy.
Journey Girl
P.S. here is a list of the little things that steal our peace and joy:
  • telling little white lies - still lying no matter how we justify it
  • being proud and haughty - bet we can all think of those times when pride rises up in us
  • getting angry and offended when someone does something that hurts us - cutting us off in traffic, cutting in line ahead of us
  • not being honest
  • not living an authentic life - commonly called being two-faced
  • being selfish - thinking more of myself than those around me who need something I CAN give or do for them
  • not phoning someone when prompted (or writing an email note etc.)
  • not doing those little acts of kindness when we think of them

I'm sure you can think of some things, but I've run out of time to think of more right now, perhaps I shall continue the list as they occur in my own life . . . . J.G.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

I've been Patiently Waiting

Ever since I moved into my little home I've been waiting for one thing and one thing only.
Well, of course there are many things I looked forward to in finally having my own little place, but this one thing I anticipated right from the beginning and tonight it has happened.

So, you are probably wondering and thinking 'just get on with it, tell us what it is' so I will.

I'm sitting in m
y perfect little living room, in my recliner, fireplace is on and little twinkly lights are casting a cozy-room ambiance within. Looking out at the street light I see beautiful white snowflakes cascading down, down, down to the ground. They are shining in the light and it is a truly delightful sight to me.

I love winter, I don't mind shoveling, sweeping and cleaning off the car. I even find enjoyment driving down roads that have been barely cleared. But, the thing I love most about winter, in the deadness seen all around, is the snow we have to make the cold and dreary season a thing of beauty. At least it is to me.

I take delight in seeing kids playing in it. I love the look of it in the sunlight and snow can even make a cloudy day look better, at least it does for me.

So I'm going to make a hot cup of something-or-other, curl up in my favorite chair and watch the snow falling in the streetlight outside my window.

I hope, even if winter is not your favorite season, that when you look outside and see it falling you can forget all the dreariness and take a bit of pleasure in seeing snow brighten up the dreary days of winter.

Blessings to you all
Journey Girl

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Weights and Burdens

We are told not to add to, or take away from the Scriptures, and that is a good and wise thing to remember as we talk to others about God’s truth. It serves also as an allegory to the lives we live. Let me try to explain my meaning.

We, as people, were created innocent and whole, with everything we require to fulfill God’s purpose for us. All that is needed is time to grow and mature in the gifts and talents we were born with. However, as life went on, circumstances and people added to and took away from us, and it is God’s heart desire to restore things stolen, and remove things added.

I think the sins of others against us, and our own sins, are the vehicles the enemy used to put those burdens and false beliefs on us. Things like distrust, feeling the need to control our lives, manipulation and such, have weighed us down and distorted our lives until we no longer resemble the person God intended us to be. But, not only did those sins add to our lives, they also robbed us of peace, security, and trust in God and others. Those name only a few of the things that belong to us as children of God.

Even though the weights that were added to our lives mostly represent bad and hurtful burdens, they have been our companions for many years, some from our childhood. It is a very difficult to think of parting with them. They have become such an accepted part of our lives we find a certain comfort in them and fear letting them go. We fear the void it will leave in our lives and worry what will replace it, but it’s only in letting them go, in giving them to God, that we see how hurtful they were for us, how crippled we had become because of them.

There is good news though. When we allow God to take away those hurtful things, through repentance and forgiveness, we find He has restored and given back all that was stolen away. It is then we realize we are free, He has saved us once again, and has filled the void with His perfect love. It is then we see Him more clearly and are more in love with Him than ever.

Blessings as we continue the Journey to Truth and Wholeness