Thursday, August 27, 2009

Making it through

I'm heading into a long weekend after an even longer (than expected) week. Which is saying quite a lot, as I knew this week would be a big one.

I'm hoping to relax, see friends, get some good sleep, watch some movies, finish as much as I can of the cross stitch project for my niece (who's almost here), read, and feel refreshed for Monday.

Thanks to my amazing Lord, I made it through.

So maybe I am a pirate.



"Here it is, Lord. It's Yours."

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

The Certainty of God's Promise

I found this in an old email to myself. I must have thought it would be good to stumble upon sometime. Today was the day, apparently.

Hebrews 6:13-20 (emphasis mine)

"When God made his promise to Abraham, since there was no one greater for him to swear by, he swore by himself, saying, "I will surely bless you and give you many descendants." And so after waiting patiently, Abraham received what was promised.

Men swear by someone greater than themselves, and the oath confirms what is said and puts an end to all argument. Because God wanted to make the unchanging nature of his purpose very clear to the heirs of what was promised, he confirmed it with an oath. God did this so that, by two unchangeable things in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have fled to take hold of the hope offered to us may be greatly encouraged. We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure. It enters the inner sanctuary behind the curtain, where Jesus, who went before us, has entered on our behalf. He has become a high priest forever, in the order of Melchizedek."

**We have this hope as an anchor, firm and secure. Jesus has entered on our behalf. And all we have to do is wait patiently.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Knowing the Will of God

This is a topic that came up in a meeting I was in today... and now it's got me thinking some things...they've been mulling in the back of my brain for the last while, and they've got to get out. I warn you, it's a bit raw and unpolished, and very fresh:
How DO you know what God's will is for your life?
And, not just in a general way, but specifics? In each situation, it is different. Not just "God I want to follow your will, get me from here to there." Not just "God, I want to follow You, oh, look, that's what You did, it must be your will." Not just a vague hoping that it'll all "work out" the way He wants it to and you're just stuck in it until that happens.

How do you know when He wants you to interact with that difficult person?
How do you knwo when He wants you to stand back and wait and pray?

How do you know when He wants you to move on?
How do you know when He wants you to stay where you are?

How do you know when you should give up on a situation?
How do you know when you should keep fighting, keep hoping, even though it seems impossible or improbable?

Is it possible?
Is it likely?

I know we can 'know' the will of God, but how often is it very specific, and how often is it a general feeling that we hope is right, and hope is His direction?

We are more likely, of course, to be on the right track if we are continually getting to know Him better; if we are praying constantly, if we are reading and (key) studying His word, if we are gathering with other believers for fellowship and learning and worship. BUT, that doesn't mean (at all) that we will always KNOW in our heart of hearts what His will is in every situation. Sometimes we will. Sometimes He puts it so clearly in our faces that we cannot miss it unless we are staring at our noses, smashed against the ground. However, you must acknowledge that there are times when you will not KNOW, you will be hoping, wondering, wishing, that you knew what His will was in a given situation. Those are the times I am asking about.

Is there a way?
Is there a reason to ask this question?
Or do we "give up" and "hope" that we are close enough to Him (through methods mentioned before) that we are hitting the right track, and haven't fallen off. That we've made (or are making) the right choice, the right decision.

Is this the time when you just "gotta have faith"and move on, and trust that He is working and will somehow show you what to do? When does that point come? How do you know when you've hit it?

How do you keep going when you are feeling like the hope is not real, and the path is clouded over? When do you let it out, and when do you keep it in, and how do you decide what the healthy choice is? Especially if letting it out doesn't necessrily lead to a productive end?


Tuesday, August 18, 2009

How do you...

...get (or stay) motivated when you would much rather be sleeping, reading, or watching pointless movies?

...continue to be accomplishing things when all you can do is dream about the nothingness you'll be doing later?

...keep at it when you just want to be home?

...get these thoughts out of your mind so you can actually be motivated and productive?

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

The "Comment" Post

Before you read the rest of this blog go read this one. If you don't, the rest of this won't make sense. (I had read this post this morning when I got to work, and as I typed my comment, I realized it had gotten WAY too long to leave there, so I moved it here.)

As I was reading this, I thought to myself "Well, I can 'see' the words in the Bible but I don't always 'see' a tangible demonstration of it," and I wondered what the difference was between those two types of seeing. However, your point was clarified when you spoke of that very thing. Can we hear Scripture and remember it? Not very easily, most likely due to the cultivated sense of sight.

I will make one point though, that could just be tied to me (or maybe a few others): Many of the verses I know today I learned (by hearing them over and over) through a song, or even just repetition as a child (1 John 4:7&8). Those of us who grew up in the faith can probably attest to this. Yes, as we got older, we had words on screens for those songs, but I knew them without looking. And those are some of the things that come back to me easily today. How does that affect your questions about sight? Is it something that we could correct in a generation or two if we put more focus on listening? Or are we now hardwired in some way so it would take as long a time to get back as we have taken to get to where we are today? Perhaps one could argue that my point is slightly invalid because the adults who were teaching the songs/verses were reading them, and they probably know them just as well. Or maybe it's the music or the sing-song way of saying the verses that keeps them in our brains. And perhaps, these songs, although full of truth and goodness from the Bible, do not always conquer the harder concepts, although sometimes they do, you just don't realize it. (... He who loveth not, does not know God for God is love...)

Either way, I still have to say that I find it amazing that people would memorize Paul's letters (among others) because they'd probably never see them again, they couldn't copy enough for everyone, and it was important stuff. I doubt you could make all of Romans or 1 Corinthians 'sing-song-y' enough to remember it easily. Dedication, of course is the necessary step, but the motivation has to be there too, and in our culture, that's almost laughable.
As for your question about faith, I would offer one comment (as I know I haven't really even begun to touch on that): I think we still "believe without seeing" - as mentioned before, I may be seeing the Word of God, but I still don't have a tangible visual or experience for everything He says through it. I still have never actually seen God. And yet, I believe.


Tuesday, August 11, 2009


I feel more lonely than I do at other times.
Maybe that's trite. Maybe that's boring. Maybe it's too much information.

But that's where I am.

We all have these feelings, and they seem to fluctuate with seasons, events, or even a bad night of sleep. Sometimes it lasts for a day, sometimes a week, sometimes longer. I am in one of those longer periods right now.

I have great friends, whom I get to see almost every week. I have others I can't see as often, but we talk often enough to make up for it. I have family relatively close. Great things are happening around me, and I am involved in several of them. And still I sit here feeling like this, and I don't have to wonder why, but it still frustrates me.

I want to be past this. I want to be through it, over it, beyond it. I don't want to have to think about it again. I want to enjoy the life I have and not be wondering about the future.

But that's just where I am.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

I'm not a Pirate... I don't think...

Today I only have one thing to say: "AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAARGH!"

Followed immediately by, "Oh, yeah... [thanks to the reminders from myself in the last posts] Give today to God - again. And again. And again."

"Here it is, Lord. It's Yours."

Hopefully, I can remember the blessings a little more clearly now.
And, hopefully, I won't need that outlet again for a long time.