How did you feel last weekend?
(Click HERE to see what went on.. )
I have been so encouraged since last weekend and I couldnt figure out why. Then this scripture came to mind.
John 4:35 Say not ye, There are yet four months, and then cometh harvest? behold, I say unto you, Lift up your eyes, and look on the fields; for they are white already to harvest.
Did you see that? ‘Lift up your eyes…’
The last few weeks, (ok, months) havent been the easiest. (Ok they have been very dry with stabs of encouragement..) But when I got my eyes off myself and my own problems, being consumed with my own environment and anything that could be wrong with it, when I looked up, I was able to see others with greater needs.
And it felt so good.
It just felt like what I should be doing.
I felt happy.
1Co 16:15 I beseech you, brethren, (ye know the house of Stephanas, that it is the firstfruits of Achaia, and that they have addicted themselves to the ministry of the saints,)
I want to be addicted to the service of the saints. Im praying for the Lord to use me anywhere He wants. Im willing to go to Haiti. Im willing to work anywhere. Im praying for the Lord to open doors and opportunities for me to serve His people. Wherever they are, that is my hearts desire.
“Do what you can, with what you have, where you are.” -Theodore Roosevelt
So here we are again, the last day of another year passed. I have been reflecting the last few days on this year and what I would have changed if I could. Its not been an easy year-I find myself feeling like, thank God its almost over. ! But I thought last night how I often find myself thinking about the past, things I did wrong, mistakes I make, things I wish I hadn’t said, or done.. or the future-worry about, wondering about it, feeling anxious for it to get here.. But then I miss the now.
I seem to be missing the now a lot lately.
In 2010, my prayer is to live in the now more. To enjoy the moments that are passing, never to return. Without worrying about what is to come or what is behind. I feel like my children need to see me smile more. Sometimes I even think of the future when the boys are older and it makes me sad. I caught myself doing it over Christmas thinking I know they are going to get wives and leave me for Christmas. (It happens!) Then snapped out of my trance and realized I was totally was missing the now.
So the word for 2010 for me is ‘now’.
Lord, help me enjoy the now with my family and friends. Today will never happen again, help me to appreciate today for what it is.
Meet the Jacksons.
We recently did.
Vonda, her daughters Ebony and Maya, and her Mother, Sis. Jackson. She came to visit us on Sunday at church. At 1:06:52 you can see Shane’s testimony about how he met Sis. Jackson. And then she talks as well.
Shane is an EMT, (the guy in the middle who is also Ernie’s cousin) and Ms. Jackson was having some medical difficulties.. When Shane got into the house he saw her daughter and 2 grand daughters. He saw a need and was able to help. The surgery center that Lavonne (his wife) works at pitched in and so did our friends cooking food for Christmas Dinner.
Her spirit reminds me a little bit somehow of Ernie’s grandma, I really have enjoyed the time we have gotten to spend with her. Seeing little Maya’s face light up over and over and feeling the spirit in the things her Grandma talks about has been very refreshing to me this holiday season.
Please keep this family and these 2 girls, so full of promise, in your prayers tonight.
Everyone is always talking about ‘when God is silent’. Theres a whole chapter in the book Im reading about it, I talk about it, I hear messages on it, its a big deal. Because he is often silent, isnt He? But sometimes I like to stand back from common phrases and look at them from a different perspective. Then I thought of my own friendships.
When Im talking to my closest friends, sometimes in the silence I am saying a lot. Sometimes if I clam up during a conversation, its speaking volumes. And most times my closest friends know exactly what Im saying.
So, I thought about God and His ‘silence’. Maybe He isnt being silent at all. Maybe in the most silent seasons in my life, He is looking right at me, He clammed up at the perfect time and He knows.. that I know.. exactly what He is talking about. Maybe.
I love The Body Shop. There is only one in Green Hills Mall and I never get to go there. I went a few years ago and found this lotion that I LOVE so much. It was on sale so I bought 2 of them. I didnt know when I would be able to go back and Im kind of weird so I never used it, it was my favorite and i was saving it. And saving it.. My favorite lotion sat in the drawer for over 2 years. So I go to put some on the other day and afterwards kept smelling this funky funk. The lotion had rotted or turned sour. And it was all over me now!
I love this once that I read, I think its Shakespeare.
For sweetest things turn sourest by their deeds; Lilies that fester smell far worse than weeds.
What a waste.
I was standing in line at the post office today and I had a weird, out of body experience feeling. The line was long, I could hear the buzz of the lights, there was a hollow sort of sound, cold and sterile, no one was talking, it felt so lonely and weird. Then in the back ground I heard a muffled Christmas carol playing on the radio, probably singing about joy and the man probably had it on out of duty, not out of feeling Christmas joy. Well, if he did have it, he wasnt showing it-at all. Seems like this describes life sometimes.
I picked up a book at the Hope Center and I know I must have 3 going right now.. But I was up late last night, the house was super quiet and I sat to read a bit. Its about fighting for joy. Desiring God when you dont desire God. John Piper wrote it and I really like his writing style. It was very easy to read, but in it he talks about joy. The kind of joy that sustains. Not the kind of joy that leaves you when a trial hits. This kind of joy, circumstance cannot add or subtract from it. It doesnt matter what kind of mood you are in, how much money is in your 401k, if your kids peed the bed in the middle of the night-your bed, how much laundry you have, or if you have a job. This is the kind of joy I need.Piper says the Lord has to give you this joy. You dont get it from a book, from anyone else. We have to even pray for the Lord to give us joy. Arent we pathetic? Yes.
The definition of sustain is beautiful.
We went to Rob Bell last week, a week ago tonight in fact. It was incredible. But at the end, he had this footage of people in Africa I believe, they were worshipping. There was no sound, but I could use my imagination on that. It was the sound of joy. Maybe having so much, being so spoiled has made me not even know what true joy is. An insy bit of suffering and Im ready to jump ship on life.
I want it.
I want the kind of joy that sustains.
Lord, help me to search for joy in you like it were a treasure. And help me to find it.