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

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

"Choose this day Whom you Will Serve"

"As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord."
We often see this on signs hung in homes. It's meant to declare, 'this is a Christian home and we will not tolerate otherwise'. But I think we need to really think about the ways in which we DO NOT serve the Lord in our homes. And we have to look critically and deeply at not only what we don't allow in our home, but the small, subtle things of the world that have crept in and caused us to conform to the world rather than be set apart for God as the verse indicates.

Romans 12:2 says, "and do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect".

Well, there it is. Pretty clear huh? So why do we, people who call ourselves Christians, think it's ok to do the things we do?

1 John 2:15 says, "do not love the world nor the things in the world. If anyone loves the world the love of the Father is not in him". Hokey, that's pretty clear too. I want the love of the Father to be in me, so guess this means I need to make some changes in my life.

Galatians 5:17, "for the flesh sets it's desire against the Spirit and the Spirit against the flesh, for these are in opposition to one another, so that you may not do the things that you please".

Ok, that's enough but I assure you there are way more verses in the Bible that speak to the same issue.

Here's the thing, I'm beginning to really see that if it's normal for the 'world' to do, those not in the Body of Christ, then I need to seriously take a good hard look at it to see if its fitting for me to do. I almost am persuaded that if the 'world' thinks it's ok, then it's likely NOT ok for me. Draw the hard line, make the hard choice.

So I have been looking at the things I do, stacking them up against Scripture.

Let's take watching TV: well I don't have satellite or cable so I'm safe there right? But here's the kicker, I have internet and watch my two fave shows on it each week. Stack those two shows against Scripture and they lose, therefore, much as it pains me, those two shows are gone! OUCH!! I'm not against TV, but there are so few shows that renew my mind and prove what the will of God is, too few shows that are good and acceptable and 'perfect'. Double ouch!! 

Is spending time watching TV loving the things of the world? That's for each of us to ask God about for our own selves. I must judge that for myself. Does watching TV cause us to think as the 'world' thinks? Is watching TV a thing of the flesh that is set against the Spirit? Are we dulling down our spirits to the things of God? What about Reality TV, seriously is it really reality??? Who's reality is it?

The worlds or Gods?

The reality is this, the enemy is seducing us, lulling us to sleep against what the Spirit would do in our lives if we spent as much time with God as we do in front of the TV or on the computer. Hours mindlessly spent playing games, reading 'about' God is not spending time WITH God in relationship. I have found lately that I am as guilty as others, but that stops now. 

Books, those who know me know I am a voracious reader. It's nothing for me to read a whole book in a couple of days. So, what am I reading? Do the books I read conform to what the world reads? Do they renew my mind? Do they show me what is good and acceptable and perfect and the will of God? If not, then out they go! 

Let's look at our attitudes toward one another. In what ways are we not loving others as God loves us? In what ways do we love as the world loves? How about tolerating, bearing anothers' burden, covering the sins of others, gossip. Do we lose our tempers and yell at our loves ones? How do we please ourselves rather than living a self-sacrificing life for our families? 

In any of our relationships inside and outside of our homes, how is it we have conformed to the world? Do our attitudes and thoughts about sports, divorce, books we read, people we hang out with, do any of them look like how the world thinks and behaves? Then we have been conformed to the world.

Sadly as I look around me I see many who have been lulled to sleep by their not making the choice to serve God and are living lives of mediocrity. Certainly we have become a people who have no power to affect the lives of the lost and hurting in our neighborhood. We are too lost ourselves.

One last Scripture, Galatians 6:7 & 8, "Do not be deceived, God is not mocked, for whatever a man (woman) sows, this he will also reap. For the one who sows to his own flesh (does what is pleasing to him/herself) will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit receive eternal life".

We have to make a choice, before we stand before a Holy God, let us choose today whom we will serve, for we cannot serve two masters.

WE HAVE TO CHOOSE.

THIS DAY and each morning we wake up, we have to choose whom we will serve that day and there are only two choices, God or satan.

God speaks clearly and plainly in His Word to warn us, teach us, encourage us to choose what is right. The enemy is subtle, saying to us as he said to Eve, 'really, wouldn't you rather . . . . ' and we slide right down. 

We need to take a stand, stop wasting our time and choose today whom we will serve.I've been asking Abba to show me the many ways I've allowed myself to be lulled into complacency, how it is I've ended up living a life of mediocrity. This is not the Christian life, of this I am convinced and I'm choosing God. I'm choosing today to live God's ways, not man's ways, not the world's ways, but God's way.  I just have to figure out what that looks like because there are not a lot of stellar examples of this kind of living today, but I'm going to ask, knock and seek till I'm living in a way that is pleasing to the Spirit and in such a way I live a life set apart to God and His ways.

I know this won't be a popular read and I really hope I've not offended anyone, but this really is just me saying, "Come on, follow me as I follow Christ". 

This is a Journey of a lifetime and it's good & right & true. 

Blessings to each of you as you choose this day whom you will serve.

Journey Girl

Friday, May 11, 2012

Who I Am

I woke this morning to the soft pink glow that heralds the sun's rise on a cloudless day. I began thinking of a sunrise and how it differs from a sunset. It's the same sun coming up each morning that goes down at dusk, however, a sunrise comes up in gentleness, casting quiet hues of pink that contrast the blue of a morning sky.

Sunsets though, end the day in fiery displays of reds, purples and oranges. They leave no gentle streaks of colour, but slash through the sky causing people everywhere to take note and acknowledge this day has ended with brilliance and fire!


Every one of us begins life as a sunrise, born in the gentler shades. Our personalities show great promise and potential, but time alone will tell how we end our days. 

Will we fail to show our true colours, obscured by the clouds of life, or leave earth having burst through life's clouds in brilliance and full technicolour, so all who've known us can say, "They left a mark on all they touched."

For me, the worse scenario would be to die, having lived a life of gray ambiguity, hidden by the things that clouded my life. And, each of us must determine what the clouds in our lives are that threaten to hide the brilliance that lies within.

It's my prayer that each one who reads this finds the courage to blow each cloud away and shine as we were created to shine.  

Blessings to each of you on your Journey of brilliance.
Journey Girl

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Love, it's all about LOVE

Do you ever think about love, the love Jesus meant when he said, "greater love has no one than to lay down his life for another".  Have you ever seen that kind of love?

I now can say I have.

For the past few months I've been privileged to watch this kind of love in action and this is my tribute to that kind of love and to these two people

I work as a PSW (personal support worker) and one of my clients recently died. Yes, I was sad, but the legacy of love which this client's P'sOA (powers of attorney) lived for us to witness is a powerful and humbling experience I will never forget.

In today's world, most people acquaint love with doing something kind for those we love and for those who do kind things for us, warm fuzzy feelings toward another and such like. Many times our love comes with thoughts of expecting something in return and when we don't get something back we often quit 'loving'. We forget that we are to give love unselfishly expecting nothing, giving love in the way the other needs to be loved, not in the way we think we should love. 
It's not about us at all, it's always about the other.

God says in His word that if we lose our lives we will find our lives. This is no truer than in the case of loving others with no thought for ourselves. In giving love this way, we find something special happens within, which we would not otherwise find.

What I witnessed in that home, is a love that had no thought for self, love that would get up at any hour of the night and come at a moment's call, would stop in after a long days work to visit. This was a love that agonized at what more they could do to make things easier for their beloved friend and what more they could do to support us. We were there for them and found they were there for us.

This love made our job as PSW's much easier as their whole mind-set was that to unselfishly support us was to support their beloved one. 
When it became unbearably hot in the summer, they provided cases of water for us. If some of us had to work overtime and didn't bring enough for another meal, we found frozen dinners in the freezer. We found candy hearts at Valentine's, we had little treats of Cheezies and cookies always around. They bought us magazines, newspapers and brought in novels and their whole thought was to make sure we were well provided for and comfortable and relaxed while doing our job. 
We thought we were supporting them, but found they were supporting us. We supported each other and it was awesome.

Surely I can say I have never been treated by a 'boss' in so thoughtful and kind a manner.

Their love for their friend was such as I have never witnessed before and will never forget. 

Oh, did you notice I said 'friend'? This was not love for a blood family member, but family of their hearts.

I consider these two in the same self-giving way as Mother Teresa who said, "It is not how much we do, but how much love we put in the doing. It is not how much we give, but how much love we put in the giving". These people did much and gave much in their loving.

I am so proud, yet humbled that I was given the privilege of being part of this care team.

Girl on a Journey of loving better, loving more like Christ.
Blessings, Journey Girl

Why oh Why

Can webpage owners not leave things alone?

Do they even ask us before they make changes to their sites and how things are done?

How do you say the FRUSTRATION???? It's these constant changes!!Most of the time they are just stupid changes. Oh they say it's to make things more streamlined and more user-friendly, says who???

Certainly not those of us who use them.

Oh, I get it now . . . . someone or a bunch of someone's are trying to keep their jobs.

Well, this user does not find the new format friendly, but is this bit of a rant going to change anything? Not likely.

*sigh*

Journey Girl on a journey not of her choosing!