It has now been seven years since I started this blog. How quickly time goes by! We are many members but we are one in the body of Christ. Therefore you do not journey alone! Hopefully through this site you will be encouraged by the fact that many things you are going through in your own walk, others are going through (or have gone through) as well. Sometimes we think we are "going through things alone." But we are not. God said that "He would Never Leave Nor Forsake Us." (Hebrews 13:5) and that "There is Nothing New Under The Sun." (Ecclesiastes 1:9). No man is an island. It's easy to forget that. May the words in this blog help you to think, encourage you in whatever spiritual state you are in and may the Lord use them to help us to grow in Him! He is the Author and Finisher of our faith!

I don’t want any readers to think that I am “promoting” being a prodigal. I definitely am not. But what I am hoping to do – is to encourage those of us who either have had or are currently experiencing a hard time in our walk to be honest about it. Personal conviction is a powerful thing, especially if you truly love the Lord. I think that sometimes the Body of Christ critiques and judges to the point where the person who is at the other end of that pointing finger feels ostracized, alienated and alone. I don't think that that is what Jesus intended. When I read through my Bible - I see a firm yet gentle restoration that Jesus ministered to those around Him. Look at John 21:15-19. When Peter who was at an all time low point in his walk - he was firmly, yet lovingly restored by Jesus. He didn't tear him down, or yell or make him feel any worse then he already did. He spoke to him lovingly and gently - and in doing so, Peter was able to repent and minister in a much more powerful, humble and confident way and it became one of the largest ministries ever.

Please note that I am only a vessel, my calling - to write. I dedicate this blog to the Lord and ask that He use it to reach out and touch whoever needs a special, loving, personal touch from Him. My hope is that the Holy Spirit allows you to see Him through the words (and not me). We go through things so that we can extend our right hand of fellowship behind us to assist and help someone else. Our Bible is the same today, as it was yesterday as it will be tomorrow. (I am far from perfect and do not profess to have all the answers...) but the good news is - Our Heavenly Father does! His love, forgiveness, grace and mercy is real!Nothing you are experiencing in your walk comes as a surprise to Him! May He be glorified through this blog and may God bless you at whatever stage in your walk you are in!~

I am a Breast Cancer Survivor

I am a Breast Cancer Survivor
I was diagnosed with early stage triple negative breast cancer on June 24th, 2010 - I have been cancer free for 7 years now. It was only a chapter in my life - NOT my life, but the impact is one that has changed my life forever. Its important for women to know that 80% of the breast cancer diagnosis come from women who don't have a history of it in their family (My family didn't). Early detection is the key. For more information please click on the pink ribbon above. It could save your life.


July 15, 2010

Ask Yourself - "Do You REALLY???"

 I received some sad news last night - a friend of mine's mother passed away (not of breast cancer). I could feel his pain through the email. I wished so much I could reach through the line and hug him tightly, encourage him. No matter how old you are - losing a parent makes you feel small, alone and vulnerable and lost.  Like a kid in a department store - separated from your mother - panicky even. So I ask you please to pray for my friend. Out of respect of his privacy, I am going to just give his initials - DRK. But God knows who He is and the "Prayers of a righteous man availeth much." (James 5:16).

Why do we believe? Have you asked yourself that question? Do we REALLY believe? Those questions went through my mind as I tossed and turned last night. It is so easy for us to make our faith into a daily routine. Part of our living our daily lives. But has it become "habit" or - as we walk through this gift called "life" are we REALLY believing why we believe?

I asked myself that as I prayed this morning. Do we just go through the motions? Or are we understanding that this is real? The spiritual realm is REAL. Life is REAL. I've been thinking a lot about Adam and Eve and how it must have been in the Garden of Eden. How beautiful everything must have been - beyond what we can imagine (and I have a vivid imagination - so beyond that is to me WOW! LOL).  Did they walk around touching and praising God for every beautiful wonder? Obviously talking to animals was no shocker - as it came to no surprise to Eve when the snake spoke to her. Did you notice that? She spoke back, casually. I can almost see her communicating with him nonchalantly, with a little shrug of her shoulders as though it was no big deal, just normal day to day conversation. LOL

God had created them - Adam & Eve and had meant them to have ever lasting life.  I wondered this morning if that is why we don't realize how short life is until we get a "jolt" a reminder - through the death of a loved one, or through sickness and disease (all of which came as part of the curse for the fall. Sickness and death weren't a part of their experience in the Garden of Eden until their fall).  I wondered if that is why when we go through life - the "clicking of our clock" is background noise. Our lives are so busy and full of family, life, work, problems, blessings etc.  That most of us (even if we know how precious life is) don't fully "hear" the ticking of that clock.  I know - because that is in retrospect how it was for me. We hear things happening to people and we don't "think" that it will happen to "us."  I guess that is just a part of being human. Until it does.  Suddenly this "life clock of mine is in the forefront - and the ticking so loud that sometimes I just want to place my hands over my ears and I wonder - if it will ever go back to being "background noise" again.

When I woke up this morning and I was thinking about that - I also thought about the scene in the movie "Titanic" the people were going about celebrating, anticipating, dancing, eating, socializing - looking towards the arrival of the ship once the journey was done.  They didn't "see" the iceberg coming. What a shock it must have been. All of a sudden having to come to the horrible realization that the ship was sinking! The chaos, the fear, the panic, the shock. Running up and down the ship wanting to have a firm footing. Wanting to "live." Their plans had suddenly changed. No longer was the destination of the ship's arrival the front and center on their minds. Survival - the desire to LIVE was the only thing I'll bet front and center. I remember watching that movie and especially the part when the violinists continued playing "Nearer My God to Thee." (I think that is what it was).  I guess you could say I'm having a "titanic" moment in my life right now. Are you? Is someone you love? Or maybe as you read this - you are thinking - "That's Casey - not me!" Are you looking at things outside of yourself? It's only natural to do that. In retrospect when someone I love has gotten sick, I've done the same thing. Tiptoed around it. Maybe didn't reach out to that individual - but went instead to a close family member or friend of theirs to say "Is so and so okay? I'm thinking about them. Please let them know." What I should have done was reach out to the person who was sick personally (especially if they were a mutual friend or family) and spoke to them directly. Letting them know I loved them, I was thinking of them - I cared. Its been interesting to me to see that is what we do. We "tiptoe" until we are faced with it ourselves. I think there is still left over in our genes from the time of our ancestors - Adam & Eve a faint sense of "we'll live forever" inside of us.

The good news is that God paved the way for us to have eternal life - through HIM. "For God so loved the world that He gave His ONLY begotten Son, that whosoever BELIEVES in Him shall NOT perish but have ever lasting life." (John 3:16)  Notice that - the promise returns again "ever lasting life." That is really what He meant Adam and Eve to have when He made them in the Garden of Eden. How sad God must have been when they sinned. Why do we turn our back on what we know is right? Why do we go our own way? Why do we think we know "better" than God? Why do we think we have "all the answers?"  We presume so much. It's time to get back to being truly "thankful" its time to get back to communicating with God in honesty, with a humble spirit. When I pray - I talk to God. Like I'm talking to you right now through this blog. As the person I am. I ask Him questions, I confess my sins - and I do it because its ridiculous to try and hide anything from Him.  COME ON - He's GOD?!!! Do you REALLY think you can hide things from Him? So I just become transparent and honest about "where I'm at" "how I feel" "what I'm doing." Even in a prodigal state - I knew/know that God sees everything so why not just be honest about it?  Its kind of like when your child takes a cookie from the cookie jar before dinner (after you've told them no snacks or desserts until AFTER supper). And you "see" them sneak into the kitchen take one out and quickly eat it. So you approach them and you say, "Did you just take a cookie from that cookie jar?" And they look at you with wide eyes - "innocently" and shake their head and say "Noooooo." But you can smell the cookie on their breath, you can see the crumbs on their shirt or perhaps their chocolate covered fingers. You know! I think (and this is just my own honest opinion) that it must hurt the Lord that we think He is stupid enough NOT to see what we do. To think we can "pull one over on Him." Can you imagine?! (LOL) All He wants is for us to "confess our sins to Him." TO HIM. Jesus paved a way for us to go directly to the Father (by the blood our Savior shed for us on the cross - it has made a bridge - away we can enter into the presence of God and communicate with Him). I will tell you as a prodigal myself - there are some things we encounter in our walk that takes time to go through. To work through, to figure out - the prodigal son didn't just "blink his eyes, or click his heels and say - there is NO place like home!" and boom! He was home!  He had to JOURNEY BACK. And I'm sure that journey was hard. I'm sure the "enemy" was whispering guilt and condemnation and fear. (Come on you know he was!) But coming back home was a PROCESS for him. He didn't know what he'd be coming back home to. Can you imagine his shock? When he came to the pathway leading home and saw his father standing there with his arms wide open? Or maybe his head was hung with shame - and his view was on his feet - each step that he was making. Maybe he didn't see his father until he actually got to the end of the path to his house?  And then got swept up into his father's big strong arms. Hugging him tightly. LOVING him IN SPITE of himself. Can you imagine the shame? The regret? The tears that flowed from his eyes? The shame, the embarrassment. And to be greeted with such love from a man he had disappointed, hurt? Caused endless nights of worry to? I wish we knew more after that. I'll bet that son went on to "do his father proud" because he appreciated his life more.  He appreciated his father more. And I'll bet - that he used his experience to guide and help others to learn from the experience he had gone through.

No one can tell ME that the Bible is NOT the living Word of God. "The same today as it was yesterday as it will be tomorrow" (Hebrews 13:8)  Because when you really think about it -  life really has not changed much  - has it?

No comments: