Tag Archive | Prayer

Don’t Give Up!

Back in September, we read  David’s story

It was a story about loss, and persistence, and restoration.

Here it is again, in a nutshell;

David – Returned home to find that his entire village had been destroyed. Not one living thing was left, not one building standing. His wife and children were taken away, and he had no way of knowing whether they were alive or dead. Here’s what David (and his men) did. You can read this account in 1 Samuel 30. Here’s what he did –

1. He wept bitterly, until all of his strength was gone.

2. He then found strength in the Lord his God.

3. He inquired of the Lord to see what he should do (He prayed)

4. He took a portion of his men with him and pursued the enemy. He got EVERYTHING back, and then some. God honored the fact that he did not quit, but that he and a small number believed God could restore. (Nation, Families, Finances, Churches)

Now here is another story, this time about Daniel;

Daniel – Chapter 9. Now Daniel finished reading the scrolls and saw that the captivity was coming to an end. He could have said hip-hip-hooray and stopped praying, but he didn’t. He didn’t stop crying out to God, he called out to God what He had already promised! Three things he did –

1. He repented, for his sin AND the sin of his people.

2. He interceded. He took the promises of God’s word and brought them before Him all the more.

3. He gave thanks. He gave thanks for what He had done and what He would do. He thanked Him for His promises and covenants.

Both of these men could have given up. They could have stopped. They could have taken the freedom God gave them, and hidden themselves away. They never would have gotten the promises of God fulfilled in their lives.

Instead, they were persistent. First in their belief that God would care for them, and then, in their tenacity to continue moving forward, through pain and loss, to receive the prize at the end of the line.

The questions here for you and I are these;

  1. Will we persist?
  2. Will we believe God?
  3. Will we go on until we reach the prize?

To be sure, there are prizes here on this earth that are worth fighting for, but in reality, they will all fade away.

My persistence will lead not only to some of these, but to the ultimate prize – Living in the Presence of God. In His kingdom. Forever.

Pretty sure of this am I?

Yes.

Seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.  Matthew 6:33

Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword?  Romans 8:35
You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.  Psalm 16:11

 

How about you?
Are you sure?

Floating Near the Surface

In my previous post, I used this statistic; The average person in Western society is bombarded by 35-48 thought fragments  per minute. Per minute folks!

It is no wonder that our children (and our adults!) can’t concentrate. There is so much “noise” all the time – there is no room to hear our true voice, the one that lives inside of us.

And, after hearing all the noise that is provided to us, sorting out the truth is just that much more difficult. Our moral compasses have a difficult time defining true north.

This is why I advocate for quiet time. Just some time, a little, or a lot, depending on your personality and your circumstances.

Taking some time to turn off the noise, and do a deep dive into that really makes us who we are.

I find that without that time of quiescence, I find myself floating near the surface of truth, but not really connecting to it.

The quiet helps me to separate the truth from the noise.

Once I sort that out, I can burst through the surface, and really begin to connect with my dreams, my aspirations, and my passions.

In short, I can be who I was created to be.

In Mark 6:31 Jesus says this; “Come away by yourselves to a desolate place and rest a while.” For many were coming and going, and they had no leisure even to eat.
My goal is to do that for a little while each day, and longer when it is possible.
How about you? Have you connected with your inner life? Have you determined your dreams, and aspirations, and passions? Do you know what you’ve been created for?
I challenge you to find out. A little or a lot.
Are you up for it?

 

Peeling eggs. Digging holes. Hairy legs.

So. What does peeling hard boiled eggs, digging holes, and shaving legs have to do with each other?

Let me tell you.

I am physically and/or genetically incapable of doing any of these things.

Eggs? Forget about it! No matter what or how I do it, they break apart in pieces.

Holes? No matter how hard I push, press or stomp on the shovel, a hole is nowhere in sight, only exhaustion.

Legs? Gaping cuts that bleed for days.

These things, I give up on. I cry uncle.

There are some other things however that I refuse to give up on.

Creating a quiet space for my heart and mind, eradicating brain fog, and following with all my being what I believe God has laid out for my life

None of the above things listed are easy. (At least for me obviously)

But important?

I have to ask myself, are they important in the scope of my life?

I have definitely decided that I can do life without some things. The perfect hard-boiled egg can be purchased at the nearby grocery. Digging holes? I have young grandsons for that, or I can call Bobby. That is what Bobby has done all his life, and he does it very well. Hairy legs? No one ever died from hairy legs, but there are creams and lotions and potions for that.

The final three, I have decided, are important for life, and health, and happiness.

In this work-a-day world, finding a quiet place is not always easy. The world is a noisy place. Some noise is to help elevate our moods, and keep us moving. Some of that noise I am convinced is because if we are quiet, we may not like the soundtrack that is playing in our head.

For my own mental health, I know that I simply must take that time to quiet myself. Even for a moment, and even if I don’t like what I’m hearing in my head.

peace and quiet..

**********************************

I was writing this on a Saturday evening. I was not completely sure where I was going with the whole thing.

When we went to church on Sunday, I found that the teaching there, really well with my topic.

Eggs? Digging holes? Hairy legs? you ask? No not at all.

But the peace part, how in my noisy life do I get there?

Where is that peace regardless of the things I can and can do?

Regardless of the circumstances I am facing in my everyday life?

The remedy was expounded upon by Pastor Ty.

Here is part of the scripture he used.

Philippians 4:4-9 English Standard Version (ESV)

Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice. Let your reasonableness[d] be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me—practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.

I will rejoice, because in my life, there have been many trials, and God my Father has been walking by my side through them all. He has never told me that there will be no hard times, only that He will remain by my side. He will never leave me. It is these trials that make me stronger.

And it causes my peace to grow.

The peace of God is more than I can comprehend, and it guards my heart. It keeps it safe from all of the jabs I get from the world and the enemy. I can count on God my Father to carry my heart next to His.

And it causes my peace to grow.

I can change the way I think. It is a choice. I have always said that fear and worry were an inside job. And here, Pastor Ty says it too. He confirms my thinking yet again. “Worry is an inside job. Anxiety is borrowed stress, borrowed from tomorrow. Every time you borrow stress, it turns out badly.”

And it causes my peace to grow.

I can CHOOSE how I think. I can CHOOSE to reject anxiety. I can CHOOSE not to be stressed. I choose these things by choosing to think about what is true, and honorable, just and pure, lovely and commendable, excellent and worthy of praise.

And it causes my peace to grow.

My circumstances may or may not change, but the way I choose to think of them will.

And in that quiet place, my peace will grow.

Now. Back to the eggs, and the holes and the hairy legs.

I can spend my good time and energy on these things that do not matter, and will disappear in the blink of an eye, or I spend my energies on things that will not only help me, but others as well.

With this choice – my peace, and yours too, will grow.

PEace and quiet

Shadows

black and white cemetery christ church

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

“Prophecy – is normally only seen in shadow” – Gary Ellis

Excerpt from “The Dead Zone” – Stephen King

Johnny Smith: I’ve been tutoring this boy named Stuart. In the vision, I saw him drown. But that’s not the point. In the vision, something was missing.
Dr. Sam Weizak: How – how do you mean?
Johnny Smith: It was like… a blank spot, a dead zone.
Dr. Sam Weizak: First of all, tell me, did the boy, in fact, drown?
Johnny Smith: His father wanted him to play hockey. I talked him out of it. The boy’s alive.
Dr. Sam Weizak: Ah. Yes. Don’t you see how clear it is? Not only can you see the future, you can…
Johnny Smith: I can change it.
Dr. Sam Weizak: You can change it, exactly. Here. Yes, John. That is your… your “dead zone.” The possibility of… of altering the outcome of your premonitions. It’s fascinating. Let me make a note.

The thing he couldn’t see, the thing in the shadow, was what thing he could change.

There are many times when God tells us something, perhaps not audibly, but it comes in as a “Knowing in our knower.” (Mark Anderson)

It can come as an encouragement, or a warning as in this example.

If God has given you a prophecy, a word, a knowing; then you can always count on it, no matter what you see with your eyes.

If you have behaviors or thoughts that take you consistently away from that promise, you can change that.

That dead zone is a place where you can change things.

Change them by hanging on, getting stiller, listening longer, and waiting for the answer to come from the shadow. If He has said it, He will do it.

Things will change. Hold on.

And soon;  Isaiah 9:2 The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; those who dwelt in a land of deep darkness, on them has light shone.

1 Corinthians 13:12 For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.

Psalm 17:8 Keep me as the apple of the eye, hide me under the shadow of thy wings,

 

Psalm 23:4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.

 

Psalm 36:7 How excellent is thy lovingkindness, O God! therefore the children of men put their trust under the shadow of thy wings.
Even if the days seem dark, we have a promise.
We wait, and walk, and wait some more, with Him, to see His promise fulfilled.

Do Be a Do Bee

In preparation for a speaking engagement in a couple of weeks, I’m going over some old blog posts.

Isn’t it funny (not funny ha ha, but funny strange) how the same things keep coming around again and again? (The topic I’ll be speaking about is “Cycles” Funny?)

Note the date of the original post. Do you keep going around the same circles like me? Like the Israelite’s. The same circle for 40 years? I would not believe it if I had not done it myself so many times.

Posted by Deborah at Thursday, March 04, 2010

Romper Room

 When I was little there was a show on called Romper Room. The theme song said “Do be a do bee and don’t be a don’t bee.” Well my “Do bee” and my “Don’t bee” have been colliding as of late. Stated another way, my Do-er and my Be-er have been having a fight. My flesh says go and go, do and do. My spirit says stop striving. Listen for His heartbeat. The only way to hear it is to be. From just about every direction I’m hearing the same thing. Rest. Rest well. Repeat. Be intentional about listening. Reflect. Ponder. Then, I feel like I’m doing that too much and being lazy. I’ve really had to ask God where that line is. How can I be a “Do bee” and not cover His heartbeat with busy, and how can I be a “Don’t bee” without being slothful. It is a fine line, but one that I believe He wants me to explore. This mornings sermon implored us to put our whole faith in God. Trusting in Him alone to keep ourselves in balance. We cannot earn it or learn it. We have to look (at Him) and live. I’m looking at Him, and believing that my life will have the proper balance of “do-ing” and “be-ing”

Sound familiar to anyone?

Well, the next posting was SO helpful.

I be sharing it with you soon!

Crazy Women in Caves, With Oil!

I heard the following quote at a conference in 2007.

I ran across it again while reviewing my journals.

First the quote, then, why it was so important to me.

“David was in a cave with some crazy people and some oil.”

The back story on this (a study I did) comes from years of feeling inadequate, lonely, and unloved, until finally, after my mother’s death, I went inside myself. I slowly took myself away from  most forms of social activity. During that time I became increasingly unhealthy in my body. At one point, for a couple of years, it was difficult to even get off the floor to get a drink of water from the kitchen. I only moved when I absolutely had to. I had two engagements each week that expected me to show up, so I did. No more.

The healing part of this story is for another time, but when I began to heal, the Lord put on my heart that I was a cave dweller.

Now cave dwelling is fine. For a season. But it was time to leave the cave for a while.

I argued that He had provided me a pretty cool cave, and that I was comfy here. To which I heard, “Comfy is what you come back to, to rest, but to come back, you first have to leave.”

As the healing was beginning, I had a handful of gals come to my home once a week for coffee and a book study. I had shared with them that I was literally a crazy lady hiding out with my friends in my cave on Wednesdays! (Note, I still wasn’t LEAVING MY CAVE.)

First I looked up CRAZY – full of defects and imperfections. Thanks a lot.

Before actually leaving my comfy cave, I looked up caves in my faithful, old, blue, 400 pound Strong’s Concordance. (No Google or https://www.biblegateway.com/  back then!) I looked up all the cave words I could find. Over 20 references!

I won’t name them all, but here is a short list of things people did in/with caves;

  • Lived in caves
  • Bought caves for burials
  • Some belonged to families so that they could all be buried in the same place
  • Some kings hid in caves, then they were executed and placed back there after the fact
  • Mighty men and prophets hid in them and were fed there
  • They were used to sleep in when travelling
  • Eat. Rest. Strengthen.
  • Used as shelters and strongholds
  • Living places for the homeless
  • A place of death (plague)
  • A place of prayer
  • And even a hiding away from the Lord place

What is the oil for?

  • Beautification
  • Fresh oil meant prosperity
  • Lack of oil meant judgement, curse, agricultural disaster
  • Good oil meant stability and prosperity
  • Used to anoint and sanctify
  • Used to consecrate tabernacles – made the tabernacle “Most Holy”. If anyone “unholy” touched the “Most Holy” item, they would die.
  • Sign of the Holy Spirit

Now, here we are. Present day. How does that apply, and why must we leave our caves?

As you can see by the uses for the oil, it can be a pretty powerful thing. It can give stability and prosperity. It has power to give life, and to take it.

The cave, (our homes) are used for many of the things caves were. (Hopefully/fortunately not graves) We eat. We rest. We heal.

We have all this power (oil) in our caves, and we’re not using it.

We need to use our caves to pray, eat, rest, strengthen, then, we need to take our oil and use it for good. We can share it with those no hope.

That power is simply wasted when it is hidden away in a cave.

I have a friend who says that the world needs our words. Could those words possibly be the healing balm/oil that someone needs?

We have it, and we’re hiding.

We find comfort in our caves, but there are others, without hope, who can be helped by a little bit of our oil, if we can just leave our comfort but for a little bit.

So go. Spread your healing oil around and then, you can always come back to your cave to rest.