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.


December 11, 2014

There is Nothing New Under The Sun...

Not Much Has Changed...
"What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun. Is there anything of which one can say, "Look! This is something new"? It was here already, long ago; it was here before our time. No one remembers the former generations, and even those yet to come will not be remembered by those who follow them. (Ecclesiastes 1:9-10)

When you really stop and think about it, not much has changed at all with regards to human nature since the times written in the Bible.  I found myself thinking of Sarah today (earlier called Sarai).  Sarah, the wife of Abraham who was unable to conceive, as a woman she must have felt a tremendous amount of frustration.  Think about it – all Sarah’s friends around her having babies, raising families and there she is waiting to conceive a child herself.  I can imagine the thoughts going through her head.
“What’s wrong with me? Why can’t I produce a child? Look at Sister So-and-So over there. SHE has a child.  What is the matter with me?”  How she must of coveted and emotionally beaten herself up over her lack of being able to conceive.  Not to mention the fact she must have driven Abraham crazy! “Come on! Let’s try it again!  And again!  And ohhhh Abraham, can you come here for a few minutes????...”  Did Abraham see her coming and then turn around and quickly go in the opposite direction?  We women have a way of focusing on something and not letting go.  I’m quite sure if things are the same now as they were then, women were no different.
God had promised Sarah and Abraham a child, but He did not say when.  How hard it must have been for the years to have passed and still that promise had not come to fruition.  How did Sarah not become bitter? As her friends children grew up around her how hard it must have been to continue believing that God would honor that promise.  I can easily understand how Sarah reviewed the promise in her head over and over and over again.  “Maybe God meant it this way… Maybe I need to do this…” Sarah reached a point where she began to question HOW God would provide that child.  “Maybe I misunderstood Him… Maybe that child was not to come from out of my own body… Perhaps my interpretation of His promise was misunderstood…”   Desperation makes us do strange things.
Can you imagine the state of her desperation out of having a child by making the decision to give Abraham her maid servant to conceive a child?  Now I don’t know about YOU, but I cannot even imagine the amount of frustration it would take ME to turn the man I love over to another woman to sleep with and conceive a child.  (Honestly, she MUST have been desperate!)  Which is what Sarah did, and Ishmael was conceived.  Sarah took matters into her own hands instead of trusting in God’s promise and decided to “help” God.  
“Now Sarai, Abram’s wife, had not been able to bear children for him. But she had an Egyptian servant named Hagar. So Sarai said to Abram, “The Lord has prevented me from having children. Go and sleep with my servant. Perhaps I can have children through her.” And Abram agreed with Sarai’s proposal. So Sarai, Abram’s wife, took Hagar the Egyptian servant and gave her to Abram as a wife.
So Abram had sexual relations with Hagar, and she became pregnant. But when Hagar knew she was pregnant, she began to treat her mistress, Sarai, with contempt. Then Sarai said to Abram, “This is all your fault! I put my servant into your arms, but now that she’s pregnant she treats me with contempt. The Lord will show who’s wrong—you or me!” (Genesis 16:1-4)
The fact of the matter is that God doesn’t need our help.  When we try to “help” God we create a colossal mess.  This is yet another perfect example of how not much has changed since the days of the Bible.  Whenever we try to “help” God we make the same kind of messes.

“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord.
“As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.”
(Isaiah 55:8-9)
So many times we forget that God sees and knows so much more than we do and what a mess we make when we try to get into the mix of what His plans are for our own lives.
This is true even for the most mature believer, because our thoughts are not God’s thoughts it is hard to be patient and wait on answers to prayer.  The frustration over a prayer request is not something that has changed with the passage of time.  The questions Sarah must have asked the Lord are still the same questions we put before Him now.
“WHY Lord am I still waiting?  Is not the Creator of Heaven and Earth able to answer MY measly little prayer?”
Coveting sets in as we look around us and wonder WHY Sister so-and-so seems to have it so easy and we are still waiting on an answer He’s already given to HER. 
God wants us to trust Him.  Trust that He knows what is best.  Trust that He is not witholding out on us.  Trust that He is able.  Trust in HIM.
Trust does not come easy.  Faith does not come in easy but it is what He desires.  Are we going to trust Him or put our faith on our own selves and “help God out.”
Later on in the story, Isaac is born to Sarah and Abraham.  The promise that God gave to them has been answered.  How surprised Abraham must have felt when God requested Him to sacrifice the answer to their prayer (Isaac) on an alter before Him.
“Some time later God tested Abraham. He said to him, “Abraham!”

“Here I am,” he replied.

Then God said, “Take your son, your only son, whom you love—Isaac—and go to the region of Moriah. Sacrifice him there as a burnt offering on a mountain I will show you.” (Genesis 22:1-2)

 Abraham and Sarah had waited YEARS for this answered prayer and now God was asking Abraham to take Isaac up to be sacrificed.  I wonder if Sarah was aware of this, I don’t think it is mentioned whether or not she was told what was going to occur as Abraham in obedience began his journey with Isaac to do what the Lord had requested.  Personally I would not be surprised if Abraham had kept this from her until after the fact (although I don’t know, that’s my own two cents worth...).
Early the next morning Abraham got up and loaded his donkey. He took with him two of his servants and his son Isaac. When he had cut enough wood for the burnt offering, he set out for the place God had told him about. On the third day Abraham looked up and saw the place in the distance. He said to his servants, “Stay here with the donkey while I and the boy go over there. We will worship and then we will come back to you.”

Abraham took the wood for the burnt offering and placed it on his son Isaac, and he himself carried the fire and the knife. As the two of them went on together, 7 Isaac spoke up and said to his father Abraham, “Father?”

“Yes, my son?” Abraham replied.

“The fire and wood are here,” Isaac said, “but where is the lamb for the burnt offering?”

Abraham answered, “God himself will provide the lamb for the burnt offering, my son.” And the two of them went on together.

When they reached the place God had told him about, Abraham built an altar there and arranged the wood on it. He bound his son Isaac and laid him on the altar, on top of the wood. Then he reached out his hand and took the knife to slay his son. But the angel of the Lord called out to him from heaven, “Abraham! Abraham!”

“Here I am,” he replied.

 “Do not lay a hand on the boy,” he said. “Do not do anything to him. Now I know that you fear God, because you have not withheld from me your son, your only son.”

Abraham looked up and there in a thicket he saw a ram caught by its horns. He went over and took the ram and sacrificed it as a burnt offering instead of his son. So Abraham called that place The Lord Will Provide. And to this day it is said, “On the mountain of the Lord it will be provided.” The angel of the Lord called to Abraham from heaven a second time and said, “I swear by myself, declares the Lord, that because you have done this and have not withheld your son, your only son, I will surely bless you and make your descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and as the sand on the seashore. Your descendants will take possession of the cities of their enemies, and through your offspring all nations on earth will be blessed, because you have obeyed me.” (Genesis 22:3-18)

Our thoughts are not God’s thoughts.  What an amazing amount of faith Abraham displayed in this true story before God.  He completely trusted God.  Oh that more of us would walk in that assurance, obedience and trust that God has our best interests at heart.  That God has plans to prosper us and not to harm us, plans to give us hope and a future.” (Jeremiah 29:11).

I know that my own faith is lacking. That the trials and tribulations I experience in my life are allowed by God so that I will draw nearer to Him and trust in Him. I rant and I rave and I get upset with Him.  Thank God for His love, His forgiveness, His grace and His patience.

Throughout the journey of each of our lives we are given a choice, we can try to direct our own path or we can patiently trust that God will provide for all our needs that He knows better than we do what should be the desires of our hearts.  It is not easy to be obedient.  There are many examples throughout the Bible, just as in the story of Sarah and Abraham where people have tried to “help” God and have made a mess of things.  What God did with those people is use their “mess” to give us a “message” so that we can learn from them using their experiences as an example.  That is one of the main reasons why the Bible should be used as our guidebook. I know that is “easier said than done” a lot of times. Our feelings in this day and era are no less intense than those back in the Biblical days, although I do believe that maybe even more so because we live in such a microwave society where we want what we want when we want it and now!

Thank God for His patience.  Thank God for His love, Thank God for His patience. Thank God for His amazing grace.  Maybe it is a good thing that He knows our thoughts before we even think them?

“You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar. You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways. Before a word is on my tongue you, LORD, know it completely. You hem me in behind and before, and you lay your hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too lofty for me to attain.” (Psalms 139:1-6)

Nothing comes as a surprise to Him.  It is one of the reasons why I see no point in hiding my thoughts or my actions before Him.  How ridiculous is that?  I never could understand why Adam and Eve “hid” from God after they ate from the tree that He commanded them not to. We cannot hide from God.  He knows all and He sees all…

Waiting on God is not easy, no matter if it was back them or in the here and now.  Using wisdom when we make our life’s choices is something that will help us as we go forward in our walk with Him.  I struggle with this myself because patience is not one of my strong suits.  I talk with God through prayer as I write to you, my blog reader; I tend to have “temper tantrums” before my Father.  “When?! Why?! Why not?! I want it!” Type of responses to the moments in my life when He seems slow in answering my prayer requests.  Since I have come out of a prodigal experience I tend to still feel the “smarting” of that experience enough to apply that hard lesson to where I am currently at in my walk with the Lord which makes me more apt to “think” twice before I decide to “help God along” in answering whatever prayer request I am waiting upon.  No matter what my current request before Him is, I am in no way anxious to experience “burning my hand” again on a stove I was told previously not to touch.  Or as the saying goes, “once bitten, twice shy.”

We have a choice, we have freewill. We can either choose to learn quickly from the current life lesson we are in OR we can have to repeat the class over and over again until we learn what it is that God is trying to teach us. (And something we clearly forget is that usually it is for our OWN good).  I don’t know about you, but I want to learn what it is I need to learn so that I can move forward, graduate and go on to the next class, because the truth of the matter is that as long as we have breathe in our body, we will always be learning and always be growing. Until we are finally with Him.

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