Guidance (promise of God)

God’s guidance: It’s always there. 

But am I?

  

Am I listening to His voice? Am I seeking His way? Is my soul at rest in Him?

He promised to guide, to teach me the path I am to walk, and the truth is that I desperately need His guidance. 

But, He needs me to come to Him and ask; He needs me to be still and wait for His answer. 

God keeps His promises. The question of whether they come true in my life is answered by my willingness to listen and obey or not. He wants to make them real for me, for you; He waits to shower His love. Let’s not make Him wait any longer. 

Shew me Thy ways, O LORD; teach me Thy paths. Lead me in Thy truth and teach me: for Thou art the God of my salvation, on Thee do I wait all the day.” (Psalm 25:4, 5)

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Connectivity and Living Fully

(August 31, 2014)

Today my friend and I lay on the grass and watched the clouds float by. She’s only three, but that’s OK. Cloud watching is a skill to learn young.

There was a happy face and a heart in the clouds. I guess Mickey Mouse was there too, or so she said. I didn’t find him.  And there were butterflies in the trees. At least she said that if she squinted she could see them.

I mentioned how the sky goes forever. How when we climb each hill to our horizon a whole new expanse lies ahead. She smiled happy, looked into my eyes with her own sparkling bright and whispered soft: “goes forever.”

I thought then of how lovely a picture would be, of how to capture the light  in her eyes. But my phone was safely in the car, and a life can be lost in capturing on camera each moment.

We watched more clouds. We played the tumble game (gently fall off something). We smiled and these moments were moments to treasure.

I think sometimes it’s better this way. To set the electronics aside, to step back and forget that you are a perfectionist, and totally find it hard to relax–and to just treasure life.

Because what if today were my last day to live: Would I want to spend it immersed in an online world or hidden behind a camera lens? Or would I rather spend those moments fully present, wherever I am?

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As I contemplate the past few days I realize how nice it actually was to have limited (or no) cell connectivity for 9 days of camping and just to be able to treasure each moment and live life fully there, to take the time to gaze deep into a pool of blue water that seemed to go forever and think of how His love is like that….

Much is lost when an electronic connection is where I spend my life, and much is lost when my goal is to capture on camera every moment of life. Sometimes it’s better to be captured by the glory than to capture the glory itself.

(There’s a reason His love is greater and deeper than my understanding can ever fathom.)

As the future stretches before me I am certain of one thing: I want to live fully here and to treasure each moment as the gift it really is.

So, join me? Step back sometime, leave your electronics untouched, and watch the clouds (metaphorically speaking) for a while. The grass may be wet, the to-do list undone, but choose to treasure the simple and you’ll see a hundred little things you would never have noticed. Minuscule flowers, buzzing bees, or just maybe His love shining in a smile.

Ripples

These moments? They are pebbles.
When dropped into time they create ripples.

Ripples travel far.

These ripples come back to me. But they also go to others. No stone makes ripples only on one side.

What I spend my time on determines who I am. Who I am, whether or not I want it to, influences those around me.

And so, I may only be a ripple-causing pebble, but I want my ripples to be His love.

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Of Brokenness and Healing

Sin is a ravaging disease. It batters us, it turns us into bruised and bleeding souls.
But God stands ready to heal. God wants to heal.
And He does. He’s healing me. But I am still broken. And this process of healing isn’t easy.

It hurts to be pressed down to the grinding wheel. It hurts to be purified by fire. The broken shards of my life poke, scrape, and scratch at each other and at me, and they hurt too.

I grow weary of waiting. I question; wonder why this takes so long.
I’ve been here before.

I want to glorify Him. I want to give this world a true picture of my Redeemer.
And this is why the process is long. In the process I can glorify Him.

Of course God could utter one word and I could be whole. But if He did that then I would miss the lessons He seeks to teach me. I would miss the journey that He’s taking me on.

Still I cry. Still this hurts. But tears cleanse, and fire purifies, and God gently goes deeper still.
His purification is complete. His healing is too. He does nothing halfway.

And so I learn in this journey that He is good. That I am loved. That He is faithful. That He is enough. Little by little I trust enough to let go of yet another lie, another insecurity, another shattered piece. When I do, He transforms it. And I can learn to give Him more.

There is no crown before the cross.

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Failure, or not.

God’s glory is His children’s good.
His children’s good is anything that brings them closer to Him.

In this way, even apparent failure can be the glory of God if the failure was needful in His children.

And if needful, is it really failure or just a stepping stone to something better?

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Connection

The city flashes past my window, but I take no heed. All I want is to go home. This hasn’t been my best day for shopping. I was more than ready to quit before I’d even hardly started. I’m usually tired of the city after a few hours, but this started after a few minutes. I wonder why. I search deep to understand. If something like this happens there is usually a reason. I think it must have something to do with the city itself and how it’s such a congregating place for sin of all types. Maybe it’s the countless strange songs and strange Halloween-ish sounds issuing through store sound systems. I search for answers. Find none there.

A light turns red. I stop. Surrounded by cars full of people. Disconnected people. Hurting people. Each going his own way. Doing their own thing.

The light changes. We move forward. And then I see it.
Disconnect. It changes everything.

I’m dismayed. How did I get here and why!? There was no disconnect when I got to town this morning. There certainly is now. I search for answers, find none.

Dismay changes to steel-clad resolve. I didn’t leave home this way this morning. I’m not going home this way. Fortunately, I have a two hour drive ahead of me.

The last of the city fades away in my rear-view mirror. My iPod playlist streams music from my car speakers, courtesy of batteries and radio waves. I hardly hear it.

I wrestle with this restlessness. This separation from His heart. Magnified torment since I know I could have avoided this if I’d just paid attention. I’m ashamed now. Almost too ashamed to seek His heart. But seek it I do. Believing that He meant it when He promised that if we sought He would be found, and that He’s always near.

Trees flash by my window now, and God speaks peace to my heart. It doesn’t take as long as I expect and well before I’m halfway home the hurry is solidly replaced by the calmness I need. I call, He answers.
Always. He’s been waiting for me.
Even though I’ve grieved His heart.
He comes, tells my enemies to depart.

And I’m back where I belong. For now anyway. I wish I’d always stay here.

Times like these are getting rarer. Rarer enough that I can actually tell when my heart has gone astray. This life requires so much more than I could ever give. Connection to Heaven is a necessity. A necessity I love.

Each day that I seek to know His heart is a day in which I never want to know anything else. He always amazes me.

I didn’t skip that this morning. But somewhere between home and town I forgot that I can’t even walk without Him holding my hand. Dreadful to forget this. For when I forget this, I forget Him.

I’m asking Him now to keep me ever closer by His side, to remind me often just how much I need Him (Every moment. Every day.), and to never let me go.

It’s only through knowing Him that I can want to know yet more. It’s only through a heart connection with Infinite Love that I can even remember why I love, live, pray.

And it’s only through this that I can be at rest and full of gratitude. He gives the gifts. He gives the gratitude too.

It’s only through this that life is truly lived.


(written a few days ago)

Always

No matter what you’ve been taught, no matter what you’ve learned to believe, remember this:

You are loved by the Faithful Father.
And you’ll always be loved.

Believe this. Live this. Love Him. You’ll never be the same.

(because I need reminded often)