Wednesday, June 27, 2012

What if....What if....What if....

Last night I went to small group and we were looking at 1 Corinthians 8-16. After reading chapter 15 out loud, we started discussing what heaven would look like. Not that any of us can imagine what it will be like, but we each threw a bit of ourselves into it.

I had to leave early, and as I was on my way home (and thankful for the extended drive), I just started asking God to give me a glimpse of what that will look like. Of course where He leaned on my heart was not a physical place, but questions started flowing...

What would it look like for no hatred to exist? No hurts from the past, no anger, no frustration? How would I act? How would I look? What would it look like for me to not have these learned behaviors that are detrimental and self depreciating? No more little doubts whispering in my ear, no more echos from the past telling me I'm not good enough? No more insecurities to hold me back? .....

What would it look like for me to be completely surrendered of myself?

That is the big question right there. That's what God asks us to do - give up ourselves and serve Him and His purposes. What would I look like, how would I feel, and how would I act if I were completely surrendered and not serving anything other than God?

Well, that's the million dollar question that I'm pondering on. What does that look like and how can I die to myself to serve God's greater purpose?

And with that, I am off to work. Have an awesome day friends!

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

I get down, He lifts me up...

"This valley is so deep, I can barley see the sun, I cry out for mercy Lord, and You lift me up again!" I so enjoy Audio Adrenaline. I actually like a whole lot of Christian bands, but this just happens to be the song I'm listening to right now (titled "Get Down" for those that are curious).

Gosh, where to start on what God has been showing me and teaching me lately. I'll start out by saying that I will not make a sweeping generalization, because the only person I know how anything feels like is me, so if this speaks to your heart, praise the Lord! If it doesn't, then maybe this will expand your thinking and bring someone else to mind!

So, when I am purposeful about getting in the Word, spending time in silence (mind and mouth silence - hard to do - trust me - I know) just listening for God to speak into me, praying, and being in community with other believers (not just the kind you pass in the hallway at church on your way to Mi Cocina or McDonalds), I grow....A LOT. This is why it is sometimes hard for me to post a blog because I don't know what to say or how to express what God has impressed on my heart.

Frankly, I also pray before posting so I can make sure that my words are salt and light and not death and destruction.

So tonight a thought occurred to me that may offend some, but, well, "In this world you will have trouble, but take heart, I have overcome the world." John 16:33. That's something my son learned and memorized from church. I LOVE that he is doing scripture memorization! It encourages me to learn with him! It also helps him hide God's Word in his heart for those times of trouble!

On with it then. "Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is--his good, pleasing and perfect will." Romans 12:2 - NIV(1984). A thought occurred to me as I was churning on this tonight. How EASY is it for non-believers to blend in with this world. And how pitifully hard it is for Jesus seeking people to move through this world. Impacting this world for God's glory (and trying to figure out how to not take credit for every good thing in our lives - something that ever Christian I know struggles with - even if it is once every ten years or so ;) )

God asks His people to not conform to the patterns of this world. What are the patterns? (Forgive me if I side-step some hot button current affairs in this list): Vulgarity, addiction, obesity, self-centeredness, judgmental attitudes, self-serving attitudes (maybe goes along with self-centered?)....and the list goes on. As a Christian, I am called to be selfless, loving, caring, and be salt and light to the world around me. One by one, God is so very graciously working my addictions out of me. I don't hardly drink (and I no longer find any fun in being drunk), I have not smoked in 5 months and a 1 day as of today (!!!!), I have overcome the cycle of loneliness, and God is working on a list of other things with me, but today I feel more hopeful than I think I ever have in those other things.

Why? Because last night I came to realize that I don't have to be ashamed for my shortfalls. I'm not ashamed because I am finally opening my eyes nice and wide to the fact that I HAVE faults and that God loves me enough to work through them with me...and that He is PATIENT. I also realize that shame isn't from God. It's not. Shame is from the enemy that wants to keep rubbing my face in the same excrement to remind me, "Remember what you did?" "Remember those horrible things you said?" "God can't love someone like you that has all these faults, that has done all these things." "Remember what that person did to you? How can you forgive them??"

No, shame and regret are not emotions from God. How do I know? Because God loves. Above all, He is love. I'm not saying that God isn't vengeful, because, OH BOY - I have read most of the Old Testament as well as most of the New Testament and I have a very healthy fear of God's vengeance (especially when it comes to willfull sinning), but I have seen too many things work out in my life to be anything but grateful for God's grace and love for me. I can't deny it. Had I gotten what I deserved, I certainly wouldn't be sitting where I am with the son that I have and the things that I have and the amazing friends that I have. Because I don't deserve ANY of it. Having this realization, "things" have started having less and less hold on me. I'd rather just have the bare necessities, knowing that others were able to have because of my giving it up.

I guess I've started worshiping the Creator over the created. :) God gives us stuff because He knows that stuff makes us happy. This fallen world just perverts it into making idols out of "stuff" and distracting us from God's good, pleasing and perfect will.

"A big big house, with lots and lots of room. A big big table, with lots and lots of food. A big big yard, where we can play football. A big big house...It's my Father's house." I love that I am ending this post on this song. Another Audio Adrenalin song at that! ("Big House"). I love that I serve a God that loves. A God that extends Grace. A God that is patient. A God that wants only His good and perfect name to be glorified, and not a fallible human to be glorified.

God bless each of you my friends!

Thursday, May 24, 2012


As I sit here and contemplate something God just opened my eyes to recently, I wonder if I have done a post about this in the past. I'll have to go back and look later. I don't want that post (if one does, in fact, exist) to alter this one. I have recently discovered that I went from comparing myself physically (which, to some extent, I still do) to other people, to comparing myself spiritually to those in my small group. Why do I do that? I think it's just human nature, and it is also because I look up to those in my group. I adore each of them and they make me want to be a better person, to grow my faith, but then something this morning kind of altered that. I was talking to one of my friends (whom also happens to be my son's mentor) while we were waiting for my son's Kindergarten Award ceremony to being, and he was sharing with me what was going on in his world and I was thinking, "Oh my goodness, should I be doing the same thing?!?" And that's when the thought occurred to me: Why am I comparing myself and my spiritual growth and spiritual walk to flawed human beings? I love each of them like I have loved few others in my life, but they are, for all intended purposes, wonderfully flawed and beautifully made that way. I then started asking myself: Well, if you shouldn't put compare yourself to them, who SHOULD you compare yourself to? Well, the honest answer is quite easy: Jesus. I say this with a lot of weight behind it. Some people may read this and think that I hope to achieve perfection. I don't. I'm flesh and blood and born in sin and will die a sinner, but a reformed sinner, someone who is, hopefully, striving to get the sin out of my life every day. Some days I will fail. Other days I will fail miserably. And I will have some victories mixed in there as well, but I strive to not let my sin go unchecked because I have seen what that does and, well, let me just say that you will never know the hurt that your sin can cause in others if left unchecked and free to grow. So, today, I am making a concerted effort to not compare myself to anyone other than what Jesus did while He was here. And every day I pray that my life will be a bright shining beacon for the lost and the seeking, reflecting God's grace, because I can honestly say that where I am in life now is ONLY because of God's grace, and not because of anyone else or anything that I have done. All for Him - Brandy

Sunday, May 13, 2012

No Duty To Sin

Okay, let me kind of recap what I have been up to the last couple of months. God has been helping me discover things about myself and my life that I needed to remove so I could have a more authentic relationship with Him. One of those things - well, I guess this is less like showing me what I need to remove (which He has already helped me through), but more of a refinement of that lesson. The lesson I am talking about is loneliness. For...gosh...probably since puberty, I went through seasons of feeling lonely. If I was with someone when this season hit, it always spelled trouble for the relationship. The guy was never good enough. He could have been the most amazing and giving and sensitive guy on the planet, and he couldn't "fix" me. When it got bad enough, when the pressure of me making the poor guys perform to make me happy coupled with their feelings of inadequacy collided, well, the relationship ended and it was usually quite poorly. Related to this, something came across my mind yesterday - much thanks to John Piper. In this sermon, he stated, “Sin is what you do when your heart is not satisfied with God. No one sins out of duty. We sin because it holds out some promise of happiness. That promise enslaves us until we believe God is more to be desired than life itself.” (you can find the sermon here: Can anyone say PROFOUND?!?!? Seriously, I stopped sewing, rewound it, and listened again...and then again. And then I wrote it down. Now, since this is still very fresh in my brain, I may not expand on it all that well, but I'm going to give it a shot anyway. What is sin? Anything that takes your affections away from God. Food, sex, drugs, alcohol, video games, sleep, friends, family (yes, I said it), movies, sports, clothes, makeup, cars, partying, working out, laziness, money, jobs, volunteering, people pleasing....there are probably just as many to list as there are people that exist, these are just the ones that come to mind immediately. Let me take an example from my own life: Being in a relationship. Okay, God made us relational people. He created Adam, but Adam being alone wasn't good, so God created a helpmate, Eve. And things were perfect, and then they weren't. Some people in the Bible (take Paul for example) were meant to be alone. Not that they were ALONE alone, because they were relational to other people on a non-romantic level, but they were alone in the relationship department. And they were satisfied with that because they could serve the Lord without hindrance. Now, that is the right way to look at not being in a relationship. And then there is me who went through seasons of loneliness because I saw that I was alone and I felt like my "situation" (aka: my LIFE) was broken. For three months, God took me through my past and was gracious enough to show me why men in the past RAN FOR THEIR LIVES from me. Seriously, I can't say that I blame them after examining my past behavior. Needy, empty, and broken. Kind of like a train wreck with less steel involved. But then He did something even more amazing. He showed me that my life without the circumstances DOES MATTER! That I have a life that doesn't revolve around anyone or anything! And He even showed me how the life I have is beneficial. I don't have to ask for permission to quilt, I don't have anyone else to make plans for me, I don't have to deal with the finances of two people, the stresses of two people, cleaning up after more people, cooking for more people, the dreaded "in-law's", etc... I quilt when I am able (which is fairly frequently), I only have to clean up after my son and I, cook for my son and I, and I can volunteer whenever I want. Sweet set up! Does this mean that I want to be single for the rest of my life? No. God put it in me from a very young age that I want to get married, however I am not going to allow that feeling to override my love and devotion to Him. I know that there is no man on this planet that can sustain me like God can. To refine that a little more, while I will go on dates from time to time, if the guy that I am on a date with isn't as strong in his faith as I am, or stronger, I won't go on a second date with him. Though it would feel good to my flesh to keep the dude around, I know that, ultimately, it wouldn't work out. The next sin that I am working on? Food. Overeating, to be exact. This is something that is new for me to work on, but I have a feeling that God will get me through it just as He got me through loneliness. The more I allow Him to change me, the more I trust Him to do so lovingly. So, overeating will be the next area of my life that I ask God to work on with me. And I could go on and on, but I fear this is already a long enough post. I will leave you here, praying that the words I was inspired to write will help you start down the path of understanding what may be hindering you from getting out of the pit you are in and moving on to the next amazing time in your life. Much love Brandy

Thursday, March 29, 2012


So God has been teaching me a lot lately. One thing that is new today is to never underestimate how much God can work in your life. As human beings, we tend to want to only handle one thing at a time. Work on our weight. Great, got that under control, now over to working on our family. Sweet! They are happy, now over to our jobs. Okay, got that under control and I got a promotion because I rock...oh crap, now my weight is creeping back up! Back to the weight thing...


Do you ever get tired of that cycle? I know I do, and have. Last year I had a lot of success with losing weight, but that was all I focused on. When things at work went haywire, I focused on that. Then the kid needed some attention, so I focused on him. Now I'm back to the weight thing. :\

I know God can do better than this. Problem is, I wasn't bringing Him into it completely, so I pretty much gave up on the diet/exercise thing, chilled with the kid, made sure things at work were running smoothly.

Well, now God wants more. He wants me to look at my house and see how much excess I have and how much I am NOT taking care of it. He reminded me that if I don't take care of what He has blessed me with, He has no intention of giving me more. I can't say that I blame him. If you gave your kid $100 and they went out and bought $95.00 worth of candy, you probably wouldn't be fumbling to get your wallet out to give them more money any time soon. My health is the same way. I have excess weight and I am not taking care of my body accordingly. No bueno.

As I was fasting on Monday, God made it clear that He wants me to get rid of my excess. Problem is I collect things. Not up to hoarding standards yet, but it is hard for me to let go of stuff. I know it is because the first six years of my life was spent in a trailer on my grandparent's land wearing third generation clothes from Goodwill, but, really, it's been a couple of decades since then, so it's time for me to get over it and trust.

So I have been systematically doing that over the last couple of days. So far I have gotten rid of 8 bags of stuff - ranging from kitchen stuff to clothes to blankets to sheets.... That's just two rooms of the house. :) There is going to be more to go, and some decisions are going to be hard, but that's okay.

On Tuesday night, my son was sick (has been sick since last Wednesday), so we skipped Bible study and chilled at home. I actually ran across the Skit Guy's "God's Chisel" skit that was remastered! I loved the original, so I was curious about the remastered version. (you can find the video on youtube here:

I don't know if I can even do this video justice in how amazingly powerful it is. After watching it and then going to look at myself in the bathroom mirror and HONESTLY saying, "Brandy is God's original masterpiece," I lost it. Like, legs gave out, bawling, face on the ground, praying...lost it.

It's hard to say that when you treat yourself like trash. When you think little of yourself, others will think little of you as well and treat you poorly. Why do I want to do that to myself?? No wonder I feel so under-valued! I couldn't even value myself! DumbDumbDumb....

Ever since then, I have looked at myself in the mirror before I leave the house and say, "Brandy is God's original masterpiece." You know what? That has completely changed how I treat myself. It has changed what I put in my body. It has changed how I carry myself...but most of all, it has changed how I view God. It has also changed how I take care of my stuff.

If you Google "how to professionally restore paintings", you will not get something that says, "this is how you professionally restore a painting!" I tried and I didn't (maybe Google likes you more?). But one thing that kept being repeated: restore, preserve, protect. That actually sounds like what God does!

(All definitions are couteousy of Miriam Webster Dictionary)

Restore: (4) to bring back to an earlier and better condition
>>>>>then the LORD your God will restore your fortunes [Or will bring you back from captivity] and have compassion on you and gather you again from all the nations where he scattered you. Deuteronomy 30:3

Preserve: (1) to keep in its original state or in good condition
>>>>>>>Neither do people pour new wine into old wineskins. If they do, the skins will burst; the wine will run out and the wineskins will be ruined. No, they pour new wine into new wineskins, and both are preserved.” Matthew 9:17

Protect: (1) to keep from being harmed, lost, etc...
>>>>>>>But the Lord is faithful, and he will strengthen you and protect you from the evil one. 2 Thessalonians 3:3

So it looks like I have a little bit of journaling to do on this subject. A lot of hurts that I have to let go of, a lot of God's healing and grace to accept.

Friends, just remember that you truly are one of God's original and amazing masterpieces! Be blessed!

Monday, March 5, 2012

Irrational Fears Much?

This is something that I have only recently decided, "I need to get this out in the open so God can cover it." Not that I haven't known this scripture, but here it is in reference:

"For nothing is hidden except to be made manifest; nor is anything secret except to come to light." Mark 4:22

So, when my son was born, I very much did not feel like his mom, though I carried him internally as God knit him together. There may have been many reasons for this, but, after reflecting on it, it was probably because I realized that I am the sole support of this child - emotional, physical, mental. All of it, ultimately (and in the eyes of the law), lands on me. His male genetic donor said from the very outset that he has no interest in having anything to do with either of us.

Cool. He stayed in California. My son and I moved to Texas when I was six and a half months pregnant, where he was born just two short months later.

Not only did I not feel like his mom, I was also quite scared of him. Not that he wasn't a good baby. He was actually an amazing baby!! Seriously, God orchestrated it to what I could handle. My son was also extremely beautiful to me. I'm guessing most people have this same feeling when it comes to their children, but I now TRULY understand "horribly beautiful". Looking at him freaked me out because he was just SO beautiful that it overwhelmed me. The love I had for that little form was just as scary and big.

Here comes the irrational fear (as though the above wasn't irrational enough!). I fear(ed?) that I would raise a son that would end up being a serial murder. Why? I honestly couldn't tell you why. Maybe it is my love of CSI and Law and Order and reading medical thrillers and documentaries on serial killers (I was a morbid teenager). But I honestly feared that.

I want my son to be balanced. I want him to be able to blend in with any crowd, but also be that beacon of light for God. Not the weird kid that walks around screaming "JEZABELL!!!" at girls who are kissing their boyfriends (or random men, as the case may be) and throwing Bibles at them.

I think in a way, all parents fear raising a child that doesn't succeed. People tell me, "My child is the SMARTEST!" And I am so thankful God blessed them with an incredibly intelligent child! This world needs deep thinkers, just like it needs people with a heart. My son isn't going to win a Nobel Peace prize by the time he's 10 (unless it is in hugging!). He has average intelligence, however his heart is just absolutely mind-blowing and inspiring. It helps that he's awfully cute, but I have to push him in his studies.

And sometimes I have to catch myself comparing him to other people's amazingly intelligent children. "Well, shouldn't he be able to do long division by now? He's six after all!"

That is why I have begun the process of collecting letters from those that are close to him, all telling him what is RIGHT with him. This world is just so messed up and so very "What can you do for me?" and "How much can you earn?" and "How can you make it better/faster/easier/lighter/etc..?" That has led to a lot of messed up people because no one truly knows what is right with them. They keep changing, hoping that who they are going to become is going to be okay or acceptable.

I dealt with that all my life, until a couple of weeks ago. God is just so good and so merciful! I have been wondering when who I am was going to be good enough to those around me. God showed me that who I am really is good enough and there is nothing I have to change to be better or gain acceptance. Not that this gives me license to walk around showing my butt and being arrogant or proud, "Well, this is me and if you don't like it, you can go *&^% yourself!" It gives me the ability to be humble about who I am, to show my true self without fear of rejection, to just be the humble, grace-given beggar who is trying to show other beggars where food is. (The definition of what a Christian is according to one of my very sweet friends and volleyball players during that season.)

So there it is, published for the world to see. It makes me giggle now that I re-read it, but I also can't deny those emotions, and I'm kind of tired of carrying them around.

And they are now planted at the foot of Jesus' cross...where they belong.

God bless you my friends!

Thursday, March 1, 2012


In my last post, I realized that I said that I was talking about Lent, except I never really did. It was more of a 4 month re-cap. Oops.

So, here's a brief overview of what I have learned about Lent. The ashes on the forehead represent mourning for sin (because lighting one's self on fire is probably not the best way to go about this). They did this in the Bible, except they would wear sack cloth, cover themselves in ashes and pray for days and days.

Lent is a season of repentance. Not just repenting for the sins that we are already aware of, but also leaning into God and asking Him to reveal the sins in our heart that are buried for various reasons. Repenting is not just, "God, I'm sorry." It is almost accepted in society that saying, "I'm sorry" means that you are forgiven of your sins and free to go on about your way, and you can apologize as often as you need to for the same thing. Repenting is a turning away from that sin, whether it is not buying the food you know you will binge on or not visiting porn sites or not hanging out with people who will lead you down a dark path.

So, Lent = season of repentance. It is 40 days long, which represents Jesus' 40 days in the wilderness. It leads up to Easter (the resurrection).

People fast during Lent. I chose to fast from Facebook. While that may seem petty, think about how many hours you are surfing around Facebook. Some people may not be there longer than 10 minutes. I, on the other hand, could spend HOURS. Why? Because I was looking at other people's lives and comparing them to mine.

Let me just say that I have come to realize that I can no more look at my life and all it encompasses and compare it to that of someone else's, than I can compare it to the life of a tree and get an accurate portrayal of where I am on this MAN MADE timeline.

It can't happen. GOD has me where GOD needs me. While I want to get married and have a couple of more children, if me being single glorifies God more, then I'd rather be single. If me being married with more children glorifies God more, then I'd rather be married. Lent-ing in this fashion has really brought me to submission and truly praying for God's grace and glory to be revealed through my life.

I can tell you this: I am a LOT more settled now than I have been in years. And God gets ALLLLL the credit for that!

God's amazing grace for you my friends!

Wednesday, February 22, 2012


Yup, I'm talking about Lent. While I only just barley understand it (and I have been told by several people that only Catholics "celebrate" it...I am a Christian, I'm still going to celebrate it), I am going to learn about it while I'm at it!

God has brought me through A LOT since Thanksgiving. That is the main reason for the quietness. While I cannot post everything on here for personal reasons, I will say that I am so much more anchored in who I am in Christ than I have EVER been before! That is absolutely invigorating!

I have been part of a small group since the week of Thanksgiving. These people are absolutely amazing, and when I first started, I felt like the spiritual baby of the group. I also felt like, "Wow, these people are amazing! Why do I deserve to be in this group? I'm not that good of a person."

It has taken nearly four months for me to finally come around and understood that, as humans, we are not worthy of God's grace and blessing and none of us deserve anything good, but by God's grace, He GIVES us that grace and puts those people in our lives that will edify and and lift us up. Ask, seek, knock. That may seem contrite to some, but when you can feel that in your power of that is out of this world!

I'll be straight honest. Around Christmas, I started getting angsty in my flesh. These people (my small group) were not showing any sign of not wanting me to be around. They were also not showing any sign of wanting me to go away. That BOTHERED me. My whole life I have been pushed aside, told I wasn't good enough, or left out, so I'm use to rejection. When they weren't showing signs of rejecting me, I started acting out.

God took me through a few storms. One of them was feeling loneliness (that will be another post), and one of the others was overeating (gluttony). Those were HARD because they were heart issues and faith issues. I didn't realize they were faith issues until one of my friends pointed it out. Through those storms, I was clingy, whiney, angsty, and ten kinds of other things. There were times when I would physically be doing something/saying something/acting out and I would have this third person view of myself, internally screaming, "WHY ARE YOU DOING THIS?!?!?! STOP IT!" And my flesh wouldn't stop.

This last weekend was kind of the thing that tore it. It was stupid, but I attend church with two of my friends and they went in before I got there and I got there and waited for them. After about ten minutes, I tried calling them, no answer. Texting, no answer. I went in and there they were. I was hurt. I am a grown woman and I was hurt by something so trivial. That certainly showed what was in my heart.

And I showed that hurt in my demeanor towards them, even if I was screaming at myself from the inside, "KNOCK IT OFF!!"

When my friends and I parted ways after church, I saw the hurt on one of their faces and the concern on the other one's face and it hurt me. I turned and walked to my car, crying. I saw right there how my bad attitude hurt these people who have done nothing but LOVE me unconditionally and accepted me despite our differences. I was humbled and ashamed and my heart hurt because my actions and attitude hurt God's heart...and theirs.

My knee-jerk reaction to high emotions, especially painful ones, has been to smoke (I'll get on that one another day) and eat until I felt better. I had every intention of doing both. I pulled into the parking lot where I could satisfy both of those fleshly cravings, parked, got out of the car, and walked towards the restaurant....and I never made it to the door.

I stopped.

It happens that at the place I stopped at, there was once a big grocery store that is no longer there, so there is an equally big parking lot that is now empty. I stomped around the parking lot, purse and keys and cell phone in hand, for an hour. Crying, whining, repenting, occasionally screaming...all at God. (And, Lord, thank YOU that You are big enough to take my childish tantrums!!)

After I had my say and fill, I got back in the car and went home. I sent my two friends a text, apologizing for my attitude and disposition. They both answered with love. That made me cry more.

Fast forward to last night at small group. I admitted to them all that I had been acting out because I am use to rejection and when they weren't rejecting me, I did what I could to try to get them to reject me. It didn't work.

They all answered with love.

I am so very very humbled and so very thankful and speechless by God's amazing grace in my life and love for me. I have never experienced community and understanding....or anything like my small group ever in my life. No grudges. They bear with me through my junk, and love me all the same.

I pray that those who are reading this have the opportunity to experience this kind of love. This is Godly, amazing, LOVE like you will never believe. I know there is going to come a time where I am going to have to bear with them, and I know that part of the reason God led me through this really tough time with these amazing people is so that I know HOW to bear through all of the hurts and trivialities when I need to. And how to answer...with love.

God's blessing and love.


Saturday, January 28, 2012


Over the last couple of days, I have come to a breaking point. Rather, God has seen me walk around and around and around the same mountain, ad nosium, and He finally put me in a place where I was willing and open to seeing that the desires I have carried and prayed for since I found out I was pregnant....may never come to pass in this life.

That is HARD to fully realize.

For some, it may be even more difficult to accept that the things that are hard in their lives now may never get any easier. I'm not trying to say that God is a cosmic kill-joy. He's not.

‎"Though the fig tree should not blossom, nor fruit be on the vines, the produce of the olive fail and the fields yield no food, the flock be cut off from the fold and there be no herd in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the LORD; I will take joy in the God of my salvation."
-Habakkuk 3:17-19

God wants to bring us to a place of brokenness so that we can see our desperate need for Him. That is exactly where He has me. I have hoped for six years, for a husband for me and a dad for my son. That is a big hope. Huge. I have taken many trips around the oh poor me mountain. I have dated men who only have a hope in getting a piece of ass and couldn't tell you anything more than superficial thoughts about God.

And my hope was in a flawed human being and not in the God of the universe.

As God has taken the last couple of nights to bring me here, one of those nights was shared with my small group. I love these people, but let me just be transparent and honest - one of my biggest fears (I know I am not alone in this) is speaking in front of people...rather, it is having a million pairs of eyes on me and me being the only source of distraction. Towards the end of our study, all three of my friends there (and the one that was there in spirit because she was not able to be there in person) looked at me. Not just looked...stared. One of my friends said something along the lines of, "I feel like there is something you need to say..."

Immediately I went deer-in-headlights. Was there something I had to say? It had been a very heavy day mentally/emotionally, sure, but....crap....there was. I couldn't open my mouth without tearing up. I managed to start talking and things just started to come out. I'm not entirely sure it was all coherent as crying was still very much part of the mouth opening process, but I started talking and leaning into God in my breaking process. They were all very supportive and just listened and added to when it was necessary, but mostly just listening.

The following day (yesterday as of the time of this post), I listened to the next sermon for next week's small group. That was hard to listen to because I was still very emotionally fragile. Hearing something that I have always feared but never dared to fully connect to: The deepest desires of my heart could never be fulfilled in this lifetime. My desire to get married and have more children and provide a father for my son....could never happen.

That was not easy to speak last night. In fact, I kind of felt like a 2 year old throwing a fit because it is possible that I could not get my way. This morning I took my son to Starbucks because I really needed coffee, so we sat there for a bit and he played on his tablet while I read Habakkuk and wrote in my journal. Writing those words was difficult. Now typing them? It's actually gotten a bit easier. I know it typically takes me 24 hours to adjust to a new truth, so I'm about 12 hours into that adjustment.

Now, this is not to say that I am dead set on not ever getting married and having more children...etc...however God has taken me to a place where I no longer hope in that circumstance or view my life now as less than ideal. God has me where I am needed, whether I see why or not. It really isn't for me to see why and judge it as good or bad.

As I have come to this realization, a couple of quotes that came to me through a sermon and a friend:

"Walking through trials necessitates that we listen to truth, regardless of if it says something we don't want to hear." ~ Dr. David Platt

"It is not true to say that God wants to teach us something in our trials: through every cloud He brings, He wants us to unlearn something." ~ Oswald Chambers

So, here I am. My hope being fully and completely in God. The one who made the heavens and the earth, beast and plant alike, every human being, every human doing, that uses the good and the bad circumstances for His will. That is my hope.

"Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for He who promised is faithful. And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds. let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another - and all the more as you see the Day approaching." Hebrews 10:23-25

God's rich and abundant love and grace over all of you.


Sunday, January 22, 2012

Plow and Harvest

"A sluggard does not plow in season; so at harvest time he looks but finds nothing." Proverbs 20:4

You know what I love? I love that the living God still speaks through His Word. Even on January 20th, 2012. The above verse was given to me as I was driving to work. I was stuck in traffic and trying not to hurl insults or ugly words at those in front of me who were...well, when you get down to it, the only issue I had with them is that they were in front of me instead of behind me.

So I pulled my Bible out. A Proverb a day and all. When I ran across this, it brought to mind something that I have been dealing with lately. Relationships. Not in a boyfriend/girlfriend kind of way, but in a family way.

This verse doesn't JUST apply to a lazy farmer, it can also apply to relationships. There are seasons in relationships just as there are seasons in life. In some seasons, you are doing the hard work; plowing (getting to know someone on a more intimate level - deeper than what you see on Facebook!!!). In some seasons, you are harvesting the result of that hard work/getting to know someone.

However, if in those seasons of plowing, you find yourself throwing mud instead, when it comes to the season of harvest, you show up, but there is nothing there. You find the person you threw mud at, stepped on, pushed around, or ignored now covered in mud, hurting, and mad. And you are covered in that same mud, hurting and mad as well.

I know what you are probably thinking: How do I get past this? That's an awesome question!

I haven't the faintest idea, however I know God will help me through. I know that I have to take responsibility for my part of the mud throwing. I know this is going to be humbling. I know I am scared because what if I start to mend these fences and all I get is mud thrown at me? And how do I stop myself from throwing mud back? No, it is not going to be easy, but I know it will ultimately be worth it.

As I was praying about this issue this morning, it occurred to me: In a personal relationship, man/woman, God instructs us to keep ourselves pure until marriage.

" Marriage should be honored by all, and the marriage bed kept pure, for God will judge the adulterer and all the sexually immoral." Hebrews 13:4

This morning I totally got WHY!!! In our dating relationships, if we are too busy indulging in each other's flesh instead of getting to know each other, when it comes to the time of harvest, we won't have anything to stand on. I have absolutely NO authority on this, which is probably why the above explanation sounds choppy at best, however I discussed it with one of my married friends and she confirmed that this is accurate.

Really, really put a perspective on relationships as a whole.

I will keep you up to date as God moves and works on this. Pray for me friends.

God bless.