Go now, a child of God. Choose well the road you take,
And the decisions you make. Keep in mind always that The God you serve continues to call to you, making you more and more every day into the faithful one God wants you to be.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

God's Will week Ten

Is my vision for my life the same as God's? 
Last week I didn’t have a verse to go along with my seeking God’s will post. It is easy to find a verse to support your point of view, but at times it can be a dangerous practice. I put my thoughts here, and that’s all they are- my thoughts.

As I am experiencing God, I am to remind myself that God and I are in a relationship. Relationships take work. I want God to tell me His thoughts, that’s the whole reason I want to know God’s will for my life. God does not see as man sees. God doesn’t see me as I see me. God doesn’t see you as you see you. My bible study this week is about God giving me a vision about what my life should be. A vision is a personal burden that grows into a mental picture of the way things could be one day. I feel like God is going to hold me accountable once He tells me what His will is. I don’t feel like I am prepared. I think about what God’s will might be and I know He knows I am not ready. Am I able? Am I capable? What are my abilities? What is my pattern before this day in how I handle with commitments? I admit pretty lousy, I would give up and just quit.

What is my motivation to have this relationship with God? I know that God has a plan for my life, and I need to become the person that God wants to use.

I am paying attention to how I conduct myself in public. Last weekend I went out to a bar with my friends to celebrate a birthday. There was a live band and a nice crowd. Before I left the house, I considered my behavior, In the past I was the good time girl, I would drink socially to keep up with my friends and let the night happen and have as much fun as possible. I have danced and sang and drank right along with everyone else.

God has been making changes in my life and I have different perspective than I used to. I used to like having a guy come up to me and talk to me and ask me to dance. Now, I percieve situations differently. I was at the bar and I was approached by a guy I knew and he asked me to dance and he put his arms around me, but something about him made me feel uncomfortable. I told him this and my friends helped me get away from him. The old me would’ve chatted with him, danced with him, and had a fun evening. The new me, thought ,do I want to lead this guy on and let him think we could have a fun time together?

The change in me makes me consider my companions and how they reflect to others about who I am. I only knew the guy casually from attending the same fundraisers and I knew very little about him, other than his name. He was attractive, he was within my height requirements, he had a nice smile, and the old me might have found his attention flattering and just went with it. The new me had a thought process, I felt a warning sign.

I’m glad I listened and paid attention to how my behavior reflected my character, I had my reserves about him. Monday morning, I talked to some of my friends about him, and I found out he is married. He did not disclose this to me, nor did he have on a wedding ring. I could have easily been a scandal.

My heart can reflect God’s true desires for my life. My own heart could also decieve me in my own selfishness and sin. I want to know God’s vision for my life.

Proverbs 29:18
When there is no vision, the people perish.

Monday, July 25, 2011

God's Will Week Nine

Sometimes the people we care about the most, hurt us the worst not by what they say, but by what they don’t say. I really value people who communicate with me, even if its about a subject that makes me uncomfortable. I am sensitive when people shut me out.

I admit I am not the best communicator, especially when it comes to my feelings. One emotion I hide a lot is anger. Another I hide is sadness. I am trying to be better at expressing these feelings in healthy ways, by simply saying, “I’m angry,” when I am, without acting out on being angry unless it warrants being action and I know I get very passionate when I am emotional. I would like to think I am someone that at least lets the people in my life know what is going on with me. I am also someone who could talk something to death and not know when to shut up.

This weekend I went to dinner with a friend. She and I both lost a sibling to suicide within a year. It was the first time she and I talked face to face about our loss and the emotions we are having. We both allow our friends to see us grieve and we force ourselves to be social even when we don’t feel much like being social. I can say I am blessed to have amazing friends that love me.

I can remember the day I found out my brother died, I called her. I don’t exactly know why, but when girls share similar situations, we go directly to the person who can relate. If I got a bad haircut, of course I go to the last person who got a bad cut too and we talk about our experience. She didn’t answer her phone that day and when I heard the beep, I realized it was way too sensitive to talk about over the phone, and leaving a voice message was completely wrong. I don’t even know what I would have said, and I hung up.

Talking to her the other night, we both shared we were the ones who were strong when everyone else fell apart. We took care of the details. We made sure everyone else was Ok. Now, in the aftermath, I realized one reason we are still grieving, is because the only person on Earth,- our sibling, is the only one we want to give us peace about what we don’t understand. We are still fighting with the person who would openly fight with us since the day we were born. The only difference now is, they are silent. We are angry because they didn’t share with us the most intimate thing in their lives, with the one person who should have known them better than anyone else on the planet, including our parents; they never shared their feelings of suicide. And now in this silence, more than anything we want to hear their voice and say something, anything- to make sense of what happened.

No, don’t get me wrong, yes, sometimes siblings have secrets from each other, and I admit to keeping my distance with some of the things going on in my brother’s life, especially when it involved his illegal activity, but when it came to us just talking, I felt like we talked. We fought. We had the same sense of humor. We both loved to laugh and have fun. We were so similar in our personalities, people mistook us for twins. We shared our joy and our sorrows. I felt close to my brother. I loved him, and I know he loved me.

In my own life, I struggle with how I might have drawn him closer, could he have lived with me, could he have a different life, could he still be alive, if only… ? If only they would have fought to be a part of our lives as hard as we are fighting to keep them a part of ours, I guess. It is hard for me and my girl friend to accept that our siblings chose suicide, because we, she and I, are both single moms. We know what it’s like to face everyday struggles, defeated and alone; we are not people who have the luxury to escape our lives. And the one person we counted on to be there for us, when we needed someone to know us intimately more than anyone else, is gone. Emotionally, I struggle with separation anxiety, trust, boundaries, and a lot more, including sanity.

I admit God gets a lot of questions from me, and they all start with WHY? I have a pile of devotionals with scriptures and a whole bible to quote from, but today, I don’t want to read about God, or share a verse; today I would like to experience God. I want to know that He is not going to be silent when I need Him the most, and repair this brokenness in me.

It is my hope that you too, will experience God today.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

God's Will week Eight

This past week the question was asked me, “What do you want?” So I’ve been evaluating stuff. Physical stuff, emotional stuff, and making real choices. My best friend told me, I do get to choose what is right for me and I don’t have to get anyone’s approval. Everything we own tells a story about who we are. By the way I have been throwing away stuff, there won’t be much left for someone to know who I am. I realized that the things I’ve been letting go of says who I used to be. I’m going through some changes. I watched a show called "Hoarders" and it is about people who have a real problem with letting go of stuff.

Today I heard a Christian song by Dara Maclean “Suitcases” and the chorus,

“You can't run when you're holding suitcases

It's a new day throw away your mistakes

and open up your heart

Lay down your guard, you don't have to be afraid.”

I am hoping that is what will happen when I get rid of all this baggage, I’ll be able to open up my heart a little more and let down my guard, this past week I feel like I’ve been putting up my guard more and more, but I think it’s because I don’t want anyone to see the mess of “stuff” I’ve been hoarding.

I think this is part of the process of this year without dating. I don’t need to add to my baggage, so staying away from relationships will be really helpful while I sort through the baggage I have from my marriage, and work on who I am.

John 14:3

And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself, that where I am, there ye may be also.

Dear Heavenly Father,

While you are busy preparing a place for me, prepare me, as well, for that place. You hold my hope for my tomorrows as I leave the past behind. Thank you for loving me enough to know that one day life won’t be a series of things I don’t choose for my life, but instead be full of what You- God, choose for me. I submit to Your will and the changes you are making in my life and in me. Amen.

Ingrid Michaelson "Giving up"

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

God's Will week Seven

For Sale! 

Oh Recession! My income is much much less than my out-going of finances. I have a web business that I hope will generate some income. I am going to have to be a lot more disiplined with my actions to make things happen.

It seems like lately every time I have a penny, I have to pay out a dollar. It is a struggle to balance what to make more important on the scale of what will be paid with my meager income. I do pray about my finances daily. I pray over every check I write, and thank God for the money to back up the check. Finances are about to get tighter. Baby Girl is starting college classes; books and tuition.

I had two part time jobs and both have completely stopped. The extra income was much needed. I am a single mom. Baby Girl got a job and that will finance her needs for gasoline money, and clothing. Right now there just isnt anything extra spending going to happen.

I need the web business to take off and we get some orders very soon. I had hoped to be more out of debt than I am, but without any extra to pay towards the debt, it has not decreased any significant amount.

I know these are the same stuggles you might be having also. I know that hope and faith go hand in hand. It is easy to loose hope, and when struggles happen, it is also easy to loose faith.

I would like to encourage you not to loose hope or faith in our Heavenly Father, God Almighty. I know that God sees the hardships. I know He has some plan for it all, but we are simple, and not all knowing like our Lord.

We don’t know the big picture.

Prayer: Heavenly Father, I want to know your will. Please begin now to give me a vision of your will for my life. I ask this in Jesus’ name. -Amen

I surrender to God for a vision about my web business and if I could envision it for myself I would like to see it grow to generate enough income to support four families and enough for us to be generous to be able to give in the name of Jesus and His will, to help those in need.

Ephesians 2:10
For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

I know I struggle because God’s will has not been revealed to me yet. I don’t have a vision for my future. I know that God uses personal vision to reveal His will. I know if He will give me a clear vision, and I will know the decision He has for my life.

I’m in a praying mood- so here is another prayer (from Discovering God’s Will by Andy Stanley ) :

Heavenly Father, once again I am seeking your help as I attempt to discover your will for my life. Inspire me now with a vision for a specific areas of my life as You begin to unfold your desires for me. In Jesus’ name, amen.

Be open with God, pray. Pray continually. Surrender each day to God.