Friday, February 25, 2011

Do you see?

When you talk to someone, whether it be a friend or a stranger, do you see them?  Do you see their need?  Do you see them for who they are or are you too busy thinking about what you are going to cook for dinner or if you are having a bad hair day?  People need people.  Plain and simple.  God did not create us to be alone, He created us to need each other.   For support, for love, for encouragement, for discipline, for hope, and for grace.  He wants us to engage in relationships and form attachments that challenge and support eachother.

It is so easy to get caught up in our own lives, desires, thoughts, and distractions that we miss the opportunity to meet the need of a person standing right in front of us.  Think about the people God has put in your life.  Now think about how you have met a need of theirs.  Most likely you have met only a few of their needs.  Yet each one of them has a need that you can meet.  Next time you talk to them, try to really SEE them.  See the meaning behind the words, see what their need is and then see if you can meet it. 

Let's take our eyes off of ourselves and SEE how we can help others. 

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Watch your Words

The last four days I have had one of the worst Canker Sores of my life.  It is under my tongue and the size of the Grand Canyon.  In the beginning it was just annoying but the last couple days it has hurt so bad when I talk or eat that I start to get hot flashes (small fevers) when I talk too much!  It has really cut down on how much I talk, which is probably a good thing if you ask my husband! :)

However it got me to we all talk too much.  I have had to carefully consider everytime I talked if it was important enough to warrant some pain.  Usually I decided not to say anything.  It makes me think about how much of my everyday life is filled with mindless chatter.  How much of what I say is uplifting, encouraging,  teaching, or motivating?  If there is one thing that many people would wish that they could take back, it would be something hurtful they said.  We remember the negative so much longer than the positive that it is good to remember that those words you speak, once they are out, they cannot be taken back.  For that reason alone, we should watch our words.  Carefully consider every thing we say to see if it is honoring to God.

Ephesians 4:29 says, "Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen."

My prayer is that once my mouth is healed I will use the same discretion in watching my words to see that they not only honor God but are benefiting those who are listening.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Focus on Today

The past few weeks have been a whirlwind.  So much to do and not enough time to do it.  Also, I think my mind has been more busy than anything and I just need to take a deep breath and relax.  I am constantly thinking about the future.  I am thinking about what it is going to be like when our new child is here, all the things I want to do for the house we are moving into in June, my daughter and how I'm going to feel when she is in Kindergarten this August.  It never ends.  But yesterday God spoke to me in that still small voice that always jolts me out of myself.  He said, "focus on today."  That's it.  No burning bush or sea parting, just the quiet reminder that I need to focus on today.  There is a verse in Matthew 6:34 that says "Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself."  Today is what matters.  How am I going to make today a memorable one?   How am I going to honor God in my actions today?  In my thoughts today?

I don't want to miss the memories of today because I'm focused on the memories I'm going to make in the future.  I won't ever get this day back.  I want to make the most of it. 

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

All that I need

I have one of those flip calendars with an inspirational quote on it each day.  Some of the quotes are super cheezy but every once in a while I read one that really speaks to where I am that day.  Yesterday my quote of the day was a verse.  It said, "The Lord is my shepherd; I have all that I need." Psalm 23:1 NLT.  I've read that verse many times before but never in that translation and it really spoke to my heart.

The last few weeks I have been really struggling with our adoption process.  The waiting and not knowing and hoping and praying and wondering when it will be our time.  It has been really heavy on my heart.  I think the hardest thing about it is that it is completely out of my control.  I really like control.  I like to make plans and make things happen.  It has always been hard for me to have (that dreaded P word)....patience.  But God would not have mentioned patience so often in the Bible if it wasn't a characteristic he cared deeply about. 

This verse spoke to me because God is saying to me, that HE is all I need.  I don't need another child, I don't need to worry, I don't need more friends, I don't need a cleaner home, I don't need to be involved in every ministry that comes my way, I don't need to fear the things I cannot see or plan for, I don't need anything.  But Him.  He is my shepherd, my leader, my guide, my way.  He is all I need.  It's time for me to let go of everything that is out of my control and that I think I have control over.  He is my shepherd and He is all I need. 

Thursday, February 3, 2011

The Battle is the Lord's

We have had a lot going on lately.  Hopes built up and hopes crushed.  The battle in my heart and mind has been raging with questions, doubts, fears, and longings.  I had a dream yesterday in which I was surrounded and be closed in upon.  As soon as I woke up I heard God whisper to me "the battle is the Lord's."  Over and over all morning the phrase went through my mind...the battle is the Lord's...the battle is the Lord's... I finally was able to sit down, talk to God, and let it all go.  It's not my fight.  I can't move or change people, I can't make things happen.  So much of me is a fixer.  If something is wrong I want to fix it. Now. Right away.  But when you are waiting on other people it is out of your hands.  The battle is the Lord's.  God is working and moving in ways that I cannot see.  I have to trust Him and let go of my fears.  The battle is the Lord's. 

Since the battle is His all I can do is pray.  Lift up every thought to Him so he can take it captive.  Psalm 139:23-24 says, "Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts.  See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting."  People were having axious thoughts back in the Bible times as well.  God is used to working with us humans and our anxieties.  I just need to continually turn them over to Him. 

God doesn't call us to fight the battle alone.  He goes with us, is with us always.  2 Chronicles 20:17 says, "You will not have to fight this battle.  Take up your positions; stand firm and see the deliverance the Lord will give you, O Judah and Jerusalem.  Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged. Go out to face them tomorrow, and the Lord will be with you." 

If you have been feeling like me, try to give your worries and concerns to God.  Remember that the battle is His to fight, not yours.  Stand firm in your faith and He will deliver you. 

I Will...

Isaiah 41:18-20
"I will make rivers flow on barren heights,
and springs within the valleys.
I will turn the desert into pools of water,
and the parched ground into springs.
I will put in the desert the ceder and the acacia,
the myrtle and the olive.
I will set pines in the wasteland,
the fir and the cypress together,
so that people may see and know,
may consider and understand,
that the hand of the Lord has done this,
that the Holy One of Israel has
created it.

I love this passage.  Is there anything that God cannot do?  All He wants is the glory!  Is there anything that you have prayed for that is completely out of your control?  It's important to have these kinds of prayers because when God answers, you know, without a doubt, that it was HIM.  He answered.  He heard your prayer.  He cares.  He is glorified.  He says "He will."  Just ask.