Month: November 2015 (page 2 of 2)

Don’t Stop

November 5, 2015

Dear Fellow travelers,

                                      “Spirit lead me where my trust is without borders.

Let me walk upon the waters, wherever you would call me. IMG_5171

Take me deeper than my feet could ever wander, and my faith will be made stronger,

in the presence of my Savior.”  

( “Oceans”, Hillsong Music )

Time at an empty beach is perfect for me and Jesus time.  He is always waiting there for me to come and spend time together. Time to open up and empty out and wait on His filling.

I love the beach, where I feel so very small and my God is so very big and mighty. It reminds me of what I am capable of accomplishing on my own strength which is nothing. Nothing without His strength, His Direction and His blessing. I need to be reminded of that from time to time .  A life coach once challenged me, “Remember you are to do your job, and let God do His job. ” Don’t take on, pick up, or drag around issues that have been placed on  God’s “to do” list.

I am wrapping up one chapter in my life and anxious (and scared-silly) about  starting a brand new one. It is out of my comfort zone and a new language is required.  Through trials, lots of errors and tears, I am trying to learn how to add a  widget, the difference between pages and posts, and how to navigate this website.   Have I committed this new adventure fully and completely to Him? Not really, mostly I am already miles down the beach.  Then I begin to feel so alone. I have lost my directional compass. I have run ahead away from my Power Source and my best Friend.

Last night when my frustration had reached critical level, I walked away from my keyboard ( rather than take a baseball bat to it) and looked for a book to read. I was done. I sent up the white flag. I had proven once and for all: you really can’t teach an old dog new tricks. But thankfully God wasn’t done with me yet. He lead me to pick up a book, Live Love Lead, that I began reading in August after hearing the author,  Brian Houston, speak.  I was flipping through it, trying to determine where I had stopped reading months ago. Chapter nineteen, “Don’t Stop”, caught my eye.  Yes, God, please tell me why I shouldn’t stop! I need to know why I shouldn’t throw in the towel.

“If you’re currently in transition, facing the end of something, perhaps the beginning of something else, you must look at this crossroads as a battlefront. When we face the end of one chapter of our lives and before we begin the next, it’s often the catalyst for a battle. You see, our enemy the devil often tries to wedge a foot in the door and catch us off guard during these times of transition. He’s hoping we’ll feel disoriented and uncertain, afraid and a bit wary. He would love to derail your journey of faith and send you down a wrong path, deceiving you into thinking you’d reached a dead end.” (Live Love Lead, Brian Houston)

Boom! God used Brian Houston’s words on page 235 to speak to me! He met me where I was ( down the beach and running on empty) and reminded me what is my job (obey Him) and what is His job (everything else).

“I love the fact that it ain’t over until God says it’s over.” (Live Love Lead, Brian Houston)

Don’t Stop.

Let’s keep walking worthy of our calling

 

 

 

The Chalkboard

November 3, 2015

Dear Fellow Travelers,

Today is the wedding anniversary of a very special couple. They are young and in love and it warms my heart.  I still consider them “newlyweds”, celebrating just 2 years of wedded happiness today. According to Hallmark’s list of traditional anniversary gifts, they should be very excited about Cotton. ( When I drove past some blooming cotton fields in the Carolinas last week, I didn’t realize I was missing  a shopping opportunity.) Whereas me and my hubby have passed Pearl and are closing in on the highly-anticipated  Coral gifts.( I hope all my relatives are reading this and they are goggling possible Coral gifts. I can’t wait!!)

This young couple will face tough life challenges as all marriages do : finances, aging parents, children, health, accidents, temptations, just raw life.  Sadly many young marrieds are swallowed up in the raging waters of life. Many don’t stay united to make it to the Wood gifts at 5 years. But I don’t doubt this couple’s marital longevity. Why? Because I know they do not ride the tough life waves alone. On their wedding day,  they made their vows of love and commitment not only to each other but to God and before God. Many of us have done the same.

But what I applaud them for is their faithfulness to prayer. They made a decision, that has become a 2-year-old  habit and I believe their marriage is being blessed for it. They pray together each morning.  They both work outside the home and mornings come early.  Yet, they still take/make the time to pray together before leaving their home. They have a chalkboard in their kitchen that lists the hurts and needs of others and of their own. Some private issues, some are public. As husband and wife, they bring these concerns and praises to the feet of God before they start their day and God smiles.

God is honored and pleased with their intentionality and consistency in talking with Him. IMG_5146 This old married lady can learn a lot from the newlyweds.

 

 

November 1: Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church

In the States, we awaken this Sunday morning rested from our extra hour of sleep (thank you daylight savings time). We are blessed to have the freedom to attend a church of our choice, within close proximity to our homes, with Bibles in hand. Some of us sing hymns and some praise songs, some may wear their Sunday best and some come as they are in jeans.  We can grab a coffee in the lobby and we find Bibles available at our padded seats. Church has become quite comfortable. Heat in the winter and AC in the summer. I know I am comfortable at my church. I have doors opened for me, I have people helping me find a parking spot, and I have indoor plumbing to enjoy at my church. Clean water flows out of the water fountains. Children are safely checked into their age-appropriate, colorful environments. Comfort is everywhere. But I am reminded this November morning that Jesus didn’t die on the cross for me to be comfortable at church or in life. Shame on me to act like He did. Nor should I be so close-minded to assume that every Christ-follower is able to worship in such a comfortable places. Shame on me again.IMG_5134

 

Today, November 1, is the International Day of  Prayer for the Persecuted Church . Our brothers and sisters in Christ in other parts of the world face persecution for their faith.  Their church isn’t sitting on the corner of Main Street but it exists in a secretive place void of many basic needs and many more comforts. Yet, they meet. They risk their lives to fulfill Hebrews 10: 25, (NIV) “Not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another- and all the more as you see the Day approaching.”

The photo is from Voice of the Martyrs (www.persecution.com)  

The remains of  one of 7 churches burned by arsons in an African country in September.

I won’t pretend to understand their persecution. But I can say a prayer for them today.

Please join me in saying a prayer today for our brothers and sisters in Christ around the world.

IMG_5123Visit www.persecution.com for more information.

 

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