Tag Archive | Story

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?

Restoration

Have you experienced loss?

Have you experienced grief?

Have you experienced physical pain?

Have you experienced mental anguish?

Have these experiences seemed to come one right after the other, after the other, after the other?

Have these experiences caused brought you to a worn out, I give up sort of place?

I understand. Sometimes it rains. Other times it pours.

Allow me to share a story with you from the Bible.

It can be found in 1 Samuel 30.

The story is about part of King David’s life.

You might say, he was having a really bad day.

David and his men were coming home from battle to their home town of Ziklag. Upon arrival, they found that their town had been burnt to the ground, and their women, children, and every one else, great or small, were taken captive. David and his men wept bitterly. They wept until they had no more strength. The men were so distressed about the loss of their wives and daughters, that they wanted to stone David to death! But David strengthened himself in the Lord his God. David then inquired of the Lord his God about what he should do.  “Shall I pursue after this band? Shall I overtake them?” He answered him, “Pursue, for you shall surely overtake and shall surely rescue.” So David took four hundred of his men with him. They traveled light for expediency. David left two hundred behind to guard all of their stuff.  Along the way they found an Egyptian in the open country and brought him to David. And they gave him bread and he ate. They gave him water to drink. David asked him, “To whom do you belong? And where are you from?” He said, “I am a young man of Egypt, servant to an Amalekite, and my master left me behind because I fell sick three days ago. “We had burned Ziklag with fire.” And David said to him, “Will you take me down to this band?” And he said, “Swear to me by God that you will not kill me or deliver me into the hands of my master, and I will take you down to this band.” He led David to where these men were. They were all partying because of their great plunder. David and his men surrounded them, and overnight, killed them all. David recovered all of their belongings, all the wives and children. Everything that had been taken, in addition to the flocks and herds of the enemy. When they returned, David shared his “spoil” with all who went with him, and with all of those who stayed behind to guard their baggage.

Here are the steps David followed to regain power over his circumstances. These steps led him to total restoration.

 

  • David wept.

  • David found strength in the Lord his God.

  • David inquired of the Lord.

  • David pursued his enemy.

  • God restored everything.

 

Note: David HAD to depend on a power greater than himself.

He depended on the Lord his God to deliver him from his circumstances.

This “depending” takes a while to learn, but is well worth the effort.

Personally, the more I can depend on God, and less on me, the more peaceful and content I find myself, whether my experiences are good, or even if they are horrible. I’ve found that being in charge is not all it is cracked up to be.

How about it? Can you depend on someone other than yourself? Where do you find your strength when you are weeping? Where do your answers come from? Do you face your enemies/fears? Or do you hide away? Are you happy with the results?

Romper Room Do Bee

The original posting of this was posted by me on my Blogspot/Blogger blog, on Sunday, February 28, 2010. The message is still a part of my story, so I thought I would post it again.

…..”Romper Room   Do bee

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 hive will have the proper balance of “do-ing” and “be-ing” “…..

A lot has happened since that time.

I did indeed take the time to “Just be”.

I have quieted my soul. I have reflected. I have pondered.

And I have heard His heartbeat. Right there next to mine.

I’m not saying that every day is quiet and peaceful, but I am saying that there are more and more quiet days than ever before, and it soothes my nerves, and keeps my heart at peace.

I have in fact, been able to coach a few people in the “Art of Quietude”.

It may not be for everyone, but I urge you to try it. Even for a short time. You can even begin with three minutes!

What you need to know, is that it isn’t always easy, in fact, the distractions get downright overpowering.

But if you want a quiet spirit, and a quiet mind, it is possible to achieve it.

Romans 12 speaks of renewing our minds, I wholeheartedly believe it can be done.

You know the saying, “If I can do it, you can too”?

It’s so true – even my run away thoughts can be tamed.

Would you like to give it a try?

 

Bigger, Taller, Stronger

Although I was tall in stature, taller by a head than most of my classmates, I’d always held the secret of being intimidated by giants. It was rare to be around girls taller than me, and when I was, I was intimidated.

As an adult, I am what many would call average height. So that part of my life came and went. What I never knew, until I grew older, was the non-physical baggage that that intimidation had left behind.

Sounds funny doesn’t it? Carrying baggage about being tall.

When you are bigger or taller than most your age, you are expected to act differently. Act your age. Straighten up, fly right. In my case, I was told to act my age and not my shoe size. Adults around me expected me to behave in a manner that wasn’t appropriate for my actual age.

So basically, what this leads to, is a little one not knowing how they are supposed to act, because they are not intellectually or emotionally to that stage yet. Some will act out, be loud, boisterous behave badly, others will hide away, building a hard shell around themselves for protection.

I’ve always thought myself a little of a split personality in this area. I went back and forth. The two sides of my personality did constant battle. I could act out, or I could hide.

My poor mother. She never knew which one would show up!

Now a days, I recognize that battle more about personality than size.

You see, I’m an introvert. I am not shy.

I am quite capable of taking the lead on things when needed, public speaking, or calling out things I may see as wrong.

The secret of introverts aren’t made up of by the lack of those traits.

The secret of introverts, is that they need much more time than the extrovert to charge up their inner batteries. When they are charged up, they often appear to be extroverts.

I said all this to say this. I don’t have to feel intimidated, and neither do you.

Get proper rest. Have adequate quiet time. (Adequate for you, everyone is different)

Take the time it takes to recharge.

When properly charged, you can be Bigger, Taller, Stronger. Or at least appear that way.

 

What is Your Favorite Childhood Story?

What’s your favorite childhood story?

How did it touch you?

What did you learn from it?

In this video, I’ll be reading my favorite childhood book to you.

The message I hope, will be as obvious to you as it was to me.

 

 

Do you say what you mean, and mean what you say?

Even when it’s inconvenient?

Even when it hurts?

Saying what you mean, and meaning what you say, will pay off.

It is something about you that people will remember when they think of you.

Your integrity may cost you. It may even cause you pain.

But will you be faithful? 100%?

When You Were Seven Revisited

Well, as you can see, I’ve been exploring my past through blog posts from long ago.

Why? Because it occurred to me that over time, I had begun to forget some of the look and feel of some of the dark places I’ve been, and the steps I took to find my way home. My heart is to help others to reclaim their lives, and progress to the places that God their Creator created them for.  Breaking this idea down;

  • You were created for greatness
  • Dark circumstances have blocked your progress
  • Reclaim what was stolen
  • Advance to the purposes you were created for

Hopefully, prayerfully, these Friday looks into the past will help create questions in you, and a longing to find the answers you need, finally.

I’m here cheer you on!

When You Were Seven 

(Original post date June 12, 2012)

This past Sunday our Community Hour Class began its summer session; “Proverbs; Making the Wise Wiser”.

During the introduction, we were each asked to answer a couple of questions around our table.

These questions were meant as kind of an ice breaker, and a lead right in to the topic we are studying.

Well they were ice breakers to be sure, but to me one of these questions was so much more.  It sent me on another journey, into the background that makes me who I am.

All of the time I have spent on introspection, I would like to think that it is all finished.

As we have spoken of in a previous post, it will not be finished as long as we are here on this earth.

However, our Merciful Father in Heaven will allow no more than we can handle at any one time.

Each journey into our background and back out again, carries with it another piece of healing, filling in the puzzle that is us.

English: Puzzle Svenska: Pussel

Have you ever been putting a puzzle together and many pieces go together quickly?

Have you noted that in the very same puzzle, some can take a long time to place?

Each of these remaining pieces needs to be inspected.

They perhaps need to be held in your hand, and placed and replaced until the proper

place is found.

If you do not enjoy the process, you probably will never finish the puzzle.

The question we were asked, seemed very innocuous at the time it was asked, but the more I reflected on it, the more I could sense that this would not be over, just because the class was.

This piece would have to be investigated closely.

Here are the questions;

* How many lived in your home when you were seven?

* Who was the warmest person in your life at that time?

Harmless questions right?

Well as the others spoke their answers, I sought my own answer to the question “Who was the warmest person in your life at that time?”

What I soon realized, was that I could not remember even one “warm” person in my life.

Were people supposed to be warm?

The only thing that came to my mind was that during my very young life, we used to travel every Sunday to my Grampas house in the country.

While there, I would climb the apple trees in his orchard and visit the hay mow in the barn.

Life was peaceful if only for a short time.

After dinner, I can recall clearly, sitting on my Grampas lap in his big comfy chair, eating popcorn out of an enamel roasting pan and watching Lawrence Welk.

I believe that was the safest, coziest, warmest spot I ever knew.

When the show was over, it was time to load up and go home.

My heart longed for our return the following week.

Those visits came to an abrupt end, when there was a misunderstanding between my Father and my Grandpa that got me a beating that today would have landed me in the hospital and my Father in jail.

Father never apologized and Grandpa would not let him return until he did.

I never got over the fact that it was my fault that we could not visit any more.

My warm person/spot was gone.

Grampa came to town to live with us several years later, after my Grandma died, and my Mother and Father divorced, but our relationship was never the same.

I knew it was my fault.

I didn’t find out until much later why it had changed so drastically, and that was that I had grown up, and he didn’t feel that hugging or snuggling with a girl my age was proper.

So NOT my fault.

But the damage was already done.

So.  After class, I was compelled to come and go through the family photos left here by my Mom.

There I found snapshots of brief moments of family life.  Brief shots.  Brief smiles.

I also, sadly, noticed that in nearly all of the photos of that time period, the smile never went to the eyes.

That sounds strange maybe, but it was there.  I saw it.

Here are two photos I found of myself.  In one of them, my favorite one, I was four.  See the light in the eyes?  They twinkled.

I think this may have been before I found out I was defective.

See the second photo?  Age seven.  Sad smile.  No twinkle.

I’m still processing what I see.

I’m still examining every piece.

With God’s help, and His alone, I will be able to fully place the truth, and go on to another piece.

Ladies and Gentlemen; here is the truth;

YOU ARE NOT DEFECTIVE!

AND NEITHER WAS I!

Psalm 139:13-16 (NIV1984)

13 For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. 14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. 15 My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place.  When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, 16 your eyes saw my unformed body.  All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.

 

Do not be afraid of the process.

Join me in placing the pieces where they rightly fit.

Let us hold God’s hands together,

And believe the truth.

John 8:32 (KJV)

32 And ye shall know the truth, and (He) the truth shall make you free.

*