I’m feeling…

I haven’t done any writing in a long time. Not really on purpose, not really too busy, just not really wanting to, but really wanting to at the same time.  That probably makes sense to some.
I guess I feel like unless I’m going through some big storm and have words of wisdom to share, I should keep quiet. Because my life, well it’s pretty good right now. No one wants to hear about that. They only want to hear about your misery. Oh evil one, be quiet.
So the job that I loved went away, the company sold the offices I managed, new folks came in and at first I thought I would be okay. It became pretty apparent very soon in that it was not at all going to be okay and definitely not a good fit and besides, they had no intention of keeping me, except to smooth the way with the staff and customers. They weren’t real slick in their communications and I did come across several items and slips of the tongues that laid it out for me. That’s business, I guess. But it was also my life, or a big part of it. I had to let it go and take a substantial cut in salary in the process.
Here’s the thing, I don’t seem to be wanting for anything. God was encouraging me to take a big slice of humble pie and get off of my “I’m a big deal” mountain because friends, I was not that at all. There is only room for ONE who is ALL THAT and the center of it all and it’s NOT ME!  
God sometimes needs to strip us of ourselves so we can begin to see Himself. God shows us that there is no way we can fly this life plane with Jesus as our Co-Pilot because we’re going to crash and burn. JESUS is our pilot.
Our identity is never in ourselves but is always rooted in Christ.
So for my career I’ve been placed back with the great company that I was with before the new company bought us, but in a much lessor role. I’ll admit this, going in I wondered how I was going to hack it. I’m now four months in and I am hacking it quite well. I am overwhelmed with blessing and peace in my life. Joy, unexplainable, incomprehensible, and entirely undeserving fills my spirit.  
It’s not the world that makes us who we are or has the right to define us by job titles and six figured incomes. Remember that as children of the Most High God, we are definitely not of this world. Our title, position, inheritance is in Heaven. So despite our situations we are called to be like Jesus, who is the Light of the World, the Salt of the earth.
Sometimes it is easier than others. Jesus never said we would have an easy life when we accepted Him into our hearts. In fact, He said it would be very hard. That we would be persecuted, hated, rejected. But by those acts, we are BLESSED, for ours is the Kingdom of Heaven. (Matthew Ch. 5)
So let’s work on being bright, flavorful, and most importantly, GRATEFUL, for great is our reward. Stop for just a moment, and think about what we know of Heaven. It’s a pretty incredible place. God our Father can’t wait to show it to us. That place, it’s for us!
The other comment I want to make is this. If you’re a parent, you’ve no doubt experienced a sulking and ungrateful child. Think of a time when you had something so fantastic planned for your child and they just were being brats. It hurts our hearts. I imagine our Heavenly Father feels the same sadness in His heart when He gifts us with a mere morsel of His bigger plan for us and we’re acting like thankless children.
I want to have more gratitude in my heart for His blessings. I want to make my heart and very pleasing place for His Holy Spirit to reside. Thank you, Jesus.

Plead the 55th

My friend Sudebajer “picks apart” the 55th Psalm in a quite inspirational way. Sharing with you all.

Dancing in the Rain

I’m marching through the book of Numbers now in my Bible reading.  Lately, it’s been the Psalm selections that have gotten to me.  Today was no exception.

David sets the scene in Psalm 55.  He’s scared.  His enemies surround him. He calls out to God.

Listen to my prayer, O God.
    Do not ignore my cry for help!
 Please listen and answer me,
    for I am overwhelmed by my troubles.
My enemies shout at me,
    making loud and wicked threats.
They bring trouble on me
    and angrily hunt me down.

My heart pounds in my chest.
    The terror of death assaults me.
 Fear and trembling overwhelm me,
    and I can’t stop shaking.
 Oh, that I had wings like a dove;
    then I would fly away and rest!
 I would fly far away
    to the quiet of the wilderness.   

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A Cute Dog Blog…Dog spelled backwards is….

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This is our English Bulldog, Rocco, and his latest toy. A mini football that my husband found in a drawer. Instead of tossing it, Dean gave it to Rocco first.
The ball expired about 10 minutes into the chew.

Have you heard the term, “like a dog with a bone?” I’d like to add one, “like a puppy with a squeeky toy” The dog has one desire, to see it through to destruction. That’s the challenge, the joy, the goal. The dog doesn’t stop until the task is completed. Never give up!

Ok, I’m going to be honest. This blog isn’t about my very, very adorable dog Rocco. I just wanted to show his picture. Sweet, huh? (don’t be fooled, he has chewed everything in my home that he can get his little fangs on)

The blog is about sticking to your convictions, not allowing yourself to drink the proverbial Kool-aide (to be cool) that is shoved down our throats day after day… “taste and see (not the Goodness of The Lord) but the blandness of a sick and damaged world.”

Our pastor referenced two places that I have been blessed to have visited, actually about this time last year, in his sermon today. Referring to the Sea of Galilee as a lively and flowing body, continually being refreshed and fed; a state we want our faith to be.
And the Dead Sea….stagnant and so chemical-filled you can only float and, by the way, don’t let the water get in your eyes!
This is me in the blue suit entering the Dead Sea.

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The bottom was so muddy you really couldn’t walk without slipping!

While the Dead Sea was a lovely place to visit, could you imagine if you allowed your state of mind to live in a gooey, slimy, and toxic place with no refreshing or infusing from The Lord?

Just wanted to circle back to my point above about sticking to your convictions and not drinking the Kool-aide. At first, the sugary drink tastes good to your senses. Even though as a grown up you know it is unhealthy for you. But you may think, what the heck, I am thirsty and it tastes good. The thing is, when you’re thirsty what you need is fresh water. (Living Water) But you may figure this Kool-aide is water, with a few additives, it will be ok. But the more you ingest the more you want and the more you poison yourself, slowly killing yourself. Pretty soon you may even think that there is no such thing as pure living water because you’re so polluted by the junk. Oh boy how easy this happens to all of us! .

Such is life, when you chose to take in things in your mind that are anything but pure then you are poisoning yourself.

I would just like to encourage you to consider what is poisoning you. Is it attitude? Anger and bitterness? Addiction? Lack of self control? All o of the above? (raising my hand now) Anything that distracts us from The Lord is poison to our very soul

I believe that The Lord has firmly placed in our hearts what is right and what is wrong. Think about it…that little “voice” that makes you second-guess before you do something really stupid. Some call it their conscience. I believe it’s the Holy Spirit. He never demands, He is a Gentleman, our Helper, Counselor, our Guide.

Stay fresh and flowing in The Lord. Enjoy His presence. And enjoy puppies too.

Merry Day After…Whom Shall I Trust

How I feel sometimes

How I feel sometimes

 

Merry Day After… Whom can you Trust

I got new running shoes for Christmas, not my usual Aesics though.  I sent my husband to the running store with my old pair and said “tell them these!” but the problem with “these” is that, for a girl, I have really large feet.  My normal size is 11 wide. (stop laughing) My running shoes tend to run 11 ½ to 12 because my toenails are so thrashed from running that I need extra room….but that’s a whole different story.  Back to the running shoes; they’re pretty, and pink too.  They make me, with the ginormous feet, feel “feminine”  ha.

So I tried out my new running shoes this morning on the treadmill and I think, I mean, I really do, that I performed better.  Ran faster! After two days of stuffing my face with more carbs and sugar than a normal person ingests in a month I needed a good sweat-soaked workout.  But it wasn’t just that, it’s that it felt good to run, faster, than I have in a while, even if I was like a hamster on a wheel.

My life has been like that lately.  I’m running from stuff… also known as “hamster-wheeling. ” Getting nowhere and wearing myself out in the process.  All of these mountains that are before me,   I should be running toward God and I’m not.  I can really sense Him shaking His head, saying, “When will you ever learn that nothing is too big for Me, if you only hand it over.” 

What I’m dealing with…it’s pretty rough I think.  My husband has another love interest and it comes out of a bottle.  I know this love interest, I bested it (if that’s possible…no, let’s just say I started managing it) myself about 20 years ago, so I definitely “get” it. He and I met in recovery when I first got sober, and in the 15 years we’ve been married, he’s relapsed more times than I can count. 

Anyone can tell you that meeting a spouse in “recovery” is not the ideal situation.  “Boy meets Girl on AA Campus…yadda, yadda” pretty much toxic and a no-no, there are reasons for that. Hello?  Two screwed up people trying to unite? We had no idea how even to live normally, let alone know what real love is.

 If I had to do it all over again, I wouldn’t have done it that way.  I would have asked God to provide an ideal spouse for me, once I got my own head on straight.  But, being human, I leapt  too fast, tried to drive instead of letting God do it, took a whole lot of wrong terms and now I’m trying to get out of the Wilderness. Hamster-wheeling…

I’ve prayed…I’ve prayed a LOT.   And prayed even more so… “God, help him stop drinking;”  “God, make the alcohol be like poison to his lips:”  “God, my husband and I are one flesh, I claim victory over the flesh and ask for healing…”  “God this mountain is too much for me to bear…” 

I am so desperate for an end, a relief, that sometimes I forget that through all of this turmoil, The Lord is doing great works in me.  He is giving me backbone where there once was not, He is giving me courage even though it’s my nature to be timid and fearful, He is making me stronger even though I so desperately want to be weak.  This mess will one day be my MESSAGE.  I know this, why am I so slow to get this from my head to my heart?

So the Lord says, “Do you trust Me?”  Yes Lord, I do.  Give me the Faith and Strength to prove it. And Lord, let me fear not for the path that comes before me.

Politics as Usual?

I appreciate anyone who can boldly speak the truth despite what is “politically
correct.” Whether you’re labeled as “right of left” or somewhere in between you have to admit that there is some definite division in our Nation over our moral beliefs and the social issues, which are hot buttons for politics. We feel very strongly about our issues, and I respect anyone who stands up for their beliefs. But please be respectful…my political thinking is my “heart thinking” and it is biblically based. I’ll just leave it at that. This is me, and I’m not judging you.

Regarding the Boldness….I’m writing this in particular of Pastor Kevin, who gave a sermon today on how we should be praying for changes of hearts, not politics. He specifically addressed what some view as moral corruption (although he didn’t call it moral corruption, he is very un-judgmental like that) he talked about the issues that effect us, as Christians, as God loving people, and all people. I so respect that! These are the issues we’re pushed to accept even though in our hearts we can’t. Some things are just WRONG. God wrote it millennia ago and He is the same Yesterday, today, and forever.
(I know some pastors will purposely not talk about these issues for fear of offense or driving people away. How can they do this, I wonder?)
How else will people know the TRUTH if it’s not revealed to them from the “Handbook of Life,” the Bible? The Pastor doesn’t give his opinion, he is tasked with sharpening the sword (the Word) and helping us in our relationship with God to let it come alive.
He also spent some time discussing Eschatology, and as I listened, learned that many current events were foretold by Prophets millennia ago.

I have been feeling so discouraged about the state of the Nation and World right now, very defeated. I look around at all the false idolatry, glamorized sensual pleasures and out of control indulgence (sex, drugs and rock and roll baby! “What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas, etc etc)…and I feel defeat. What I should feel is faith, what I’m going to pray for is faith. Because if you’ve spent any time in the Word, you know what happens next, we know how it all plays out…things will get worse, we need to stand by the truth and not the status quo, …and remember we’re on the right team and our Guy wins..