March 31, 2009

Don't stop praying...

"Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go." Joshua 1:9

There are some amazing people going through some horrific stuff right now. People who love God with their whole heart, people who have done nothing wrong, people who seek God's face constantly.

We question why? We plead their case before the throne of God...yet nothing changes.

...Or do they?

In the physical realm, things are overwhelming, and the outcome looks bleak. Hearts continue to race too fast, cancer continues to grow, people still die despite their faith and prayers, babies still linger in hopeless medical situations. In the physical realm, things appear as if nothing has changed.

What is happening in the spiritual realm as prayers are lifted to heaven or as the groaning and mutterings from burdened hearts cry out to God?

I believe ALL of hell is trembling...

Trembling because people are still choosing to cry out in FAITH to their Maker. Still choosing to believe even though physical situations haven't been resolved. Still choosing to declare and pronounce that Jesus Christ is Savior and Healer and Deliverer and their Refuge!!!

Don't EVER give up praying for that person or that thing you want to see come to pass! Every prayer makes a difference in the spiritual realm. God does hear, He does see, He does listen, He is sending legions of angels to fight the battle in which the enemy thinks he is going to win.

We have read the end of the story, and we KNOW who wins this war. So I will end again with this verse:

"Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go." Joshua 1:9


March 30, 2009

Why?

Why do you blog?

"Well, I want to share my story, encourage others, and be used by God?"

That's great! Why do you really blog?


It feels good when you know your posts mean something to someone else besides just you. It gives a sense of acknowledgment and acceptance that I haven't found in too many other places. Being a natural born listener, this is a place where I can blab on forever without being interrupted and my thoughts are heard.

I'm a "words of affirmation" girl, for those of you familiar with "Love languages". That's why I love to blog! I love to speak encouragement to others and to speak life-changing destiny words into the lives of hurting people. I just love it!!!

I love getting comments! I love people saying, "You made a difference in my life!" It makes me feel so good and worthy and precious and needed... oops!

Yep, going there again! For those of you who are "words of affirmation" bloggers, do you find yourself constantly getting caught up in numbers and hits on your blog and needing to hear people say, "Great post" and really mean it?

When I first named this blog, I named it heaven's journey for one simple reason. My name is Heaven and this is my journey. I really felt that is what I was supposed to name it. My purpose?

To simply write... and if other's came along for the ride, then awesome. If they chose not to, then awesome. My goal was to simply write and have my Heavenly Father say in the end, "Well done my good and faithful servant!"

"If I get many comments, then I posted some really great thoughts. If I get very few comments, then surely something is wrong. I definitely need to spice up my blog or come up with some extremely creative ideas to draw people to my blog"

Um...since when is that "simply writing"???

What happened to simply writing for an audience of One? The One! What happened to "I am going to write and blog because it draws me nearer to The One who planted that desire to write within me".

I'm getting back to the "heart of blogging", where it's all about You, all about You Jesus. Forgive me Lord for the thing I've made it, when it's all about You, all about You Jesus!

I don't have much time to check out other people's blogs like I used to. You know what? Other people don't have much time either because God is drawing everyone back to the well, and back to the heart of worship where He's patiently been waiting for us to return...

If I write for only Jesus.... is that good enough?

If He is my only visitor for the day, is that o-kay?

If His comment is the only one that is left, will I cherish it and let His words be more than enough?

Am I willing to come back to the "heart of blogging?" The heart of heaven's journey...to simply write...to get closer to Jesus...and stay there?

March 29, 2009

Contest...

There's a contest going over at Sailor & Co. that has to be the most original contest I've ever seen.

She's taken a picture that represents a Bible verse, and you have to figure out which scripture it is...

Head over there. It's pretty cool!

March 26, 2009

Blameless...

Psalm 101:2-3

I will set before my eyes no vile thing!

I will walk in my house

with a blameless heart...


Dictionary.com defines VILE as:

1. wretchedly bad: a vile humor.
2. highly offensive, unpleasant, or objectionable: vile slander.
3. repulsive or disgusting, as to the senses or feelings: a vile odor.
4. morally debased, depraved, or despicable: vile deeds.
5. foul; filthy: vile language.
6. poor; wretched: vile workmanship.
7. of mean or low condition: a vile beggar.
8. menial; lowly: vile tasks.
9. degraded; ignominious: vile servitude.


...BLAMELESS as:

free of guilt; not subject to blame; "has lived a blameless life"; "of irreproachable character"; "an unimpeachable reputation"



As I begin studying this verse, those definitions, as well as the definitions of the definition, it becomes very clear to me that I am far from blameless and I get discouraged.

Does that mean I quit trying?

Nope...

Does that mean I give up on those things that God has called me into?

Nope...

Does that mean that I allow the enemy to steal my destiny?

Nope...

It just means I need my Savior each and every moment of my day to purify and sanctify me. On my own, I could change for a little while, but lasting change comes when God purges our hearts, and renews us with His spirit. Jesus covers us with the blood of Jesus, and therefore, we stand pure and spotless before our King. Be encouraged today as God continues to help us to work out our salvation and don't let the enemy tell you that you may as well just quit!

~Heaven

March 24, 2009

I'm diving in...

Here's to the new blog... (gulp*)


Click here to see where God's taking me...


Thanks for keeping in touch even though I haven't had time to catch up and comment on your blogs. You all are the best!!!

March 23, 2009

Pictures




1. A picture I drew for myself during a hard time.
2. A picture for Paulette, my bloggy friend.
3. A picture for my son, Dylan


God has been birthing in me a creative ministry to spread His encouragement, love, and words to others through simple artwork. I have been drawing for myself and for others I know, but about a month ago, I offered drawings to 3 bloggy friends.

As I prayerfully draw, I get words, phrases, pictures, and verses for people which I write down and later share with the person I am drawing for. It's fairly comfortable when I know someone because I can look at their life and say, "Oh yes God, I can totally see that in their life."

...when it's practically a stranger I am drawing for and God gives me words, phrases, and verses, it can be a little uncomfortable because I totally have to trust God with everything I write and draw. Every stroke of my pencils and every word impressed on my heart is crucial and I pray, "Lord, what do YOU want me to tell this person? What do they need to hear from YOU? What area of their life do YOU want to speak into?"

I've gotten to the point that I just write what I "hear" from God, and pray that it will mean something to the recipient of the drawing. Some of the things seem "off the wall" to me, but I find more and more how God speaks to each of us in the way that makes sense to us. AND in ways, that we know that we know that we know that God is speaking to us:)

My bloggy friend, Paulette, recently received her drawing in the mail, and she writes about what this drawing meant to her. Click here to read her story.

I love being blown away by God, and I am amazed at His power and glory and love for people everytime I draw. This is one ministry that God gets all the credit because I am naturally creative but NOT artistic:)

On a lighter side, I visited with family this weekend and here are a few pictures:

My cousins, Tammy and Tonjia and I


Tammy and I



Tammy and I
(check out the gum in my mouth)


My Aunt, Dolly, from Colorado


Kayla and my cousin, Trina

March 18, 2009


It's amazing how we allow ourselves to believe the lies of the enemy and before long, we have found ourselves in a hand-crafted pit. Ugh!

Praise God that He is not surprised by our slithering into the pits we have created for ourselves, and that He kneels near with an outreached arm to pull us out. Just because we find ourselves in despair, fear, doubt, anger, or depression, does not give us the right to stay there, and it definitely does not give the enemy a right to keep us there.

If you have accepted Jesus as your personal Savior, you are God's. You are sealed with the ownership stamp of Jesus Christ, and therefore, your name is written in the Lamb's Book of Life. When you are God's, you are covered in the blood of Jesus, and therefore, you don't have to stay in life's "pits", even when you crawled in yourself.

Psalm 40:1-2
I waited patiently for the Lord; he turned to me and heard my cry. He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and the mire; he set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand.

Most everyone has the "pit" story that God first found them in. But what about the daily "pits" before our feet and around us that we don't recognize as such? Self-pity, "I'm the victim", depression, pride, "What about me?", worry, anxiety, self-mutilation, addictions, bitterness, unforgiveness, fear, doubt, poor self-esteem, etc.

Any light bulbs coming on?

No matter what the size the hole is, a pit is a pit, and we don't have to stay in them. Sometimes, it's as simple as choosing to crawl out. Other times, it requires prayer and deliverance, and the breaking of strongholds. There is NO pit too deep for God. He will pull you out of the slimiest mess if you are willing to grab His hand.

Either way, God is there waiting for you to reach up and grasp Him with everything you have. God's strength is perfect in our weakness, and He has the power to loose the thickest chains on a person. Don't let the enemy lie to you and tell you that you deserve what you have or that you have dug yourself such a deep pit that you can never get out!

God restores! God heals! God loves! God gives second chances...& third...& fourth...

Over the past few days, I found myself slipping into a pit of despair and hopelessness over a situation in my life. I am not staying there. I am a child of God, and I don't have to rot in the swarming lies of the enemy.

I stand once again this morning with my armor on, showered in the grace and forgiveness of God, dressed in the robes of righteousness that Jesus has given me, and ready (once again) to walk forward into the destiny God has called for my life.

~Heavenly Father, Daddy God, I thank you for opening my eyes to the pit I slipped into. I thank you that I don't have to stay in it. I thank you for reaching your arm out to me as I desperately cried from the pit. Lord, you know the situation in my life that seems out-of-control , and Father, I give it to you once again. I trust in your working and active power in my life, and I thank you that you are a husband to the husbandless, a father to the fatherless, and my Provider. I thank you that you filter everything through your fingers before you even allow it to reach the air that I breathe. I trust in your plan for my life. I choose to release these things, once again, to you, and ask for forgiveness for thinking I could handle them by myself.

Lord, I found that a few of the circumstances I listed above, such as the low self-esteem and worry, apply to my life. I pray that you would break the power of those things in my life in the name of Jesus. I pray that you would saturate those things in the blood of Jesus Christ, and that you would not allow them to take root in my life. If they have already rooted, I pray that you would break them at the root and remove them. Holy Spirit, I pray that you would dwell in those places once filled with worry and low self-esteem, and that you would bring truth to my life and to my heart. I pray protection over my family, friends, and even my bloggy friends, as they would choose to be free from the things holding them back. Thank you for continuing to prune us, love us, and mold us into the image of Jesus Christ. I commit my day to you, O Lord, and thank you for freedom! In Jesus' name, Amen~

March 17, 2009

Weekend journey

"The one to whom we pray knows our feelings. [Jesus] knows temptation...has felt discouraged...has been hungry and sleepy and tired. He knows what we feel like when the alarm goes off... He nods in understanding when we pray in anger. He is touched when we tell him there is more to do than can ever be done. He smiles when we confess our weariness.

He wants us to remember that he too was human...to know that he too knew...weariness...He wants us to remember that our trailblazer didn't wear bulletproof vests or rubber gloves or an impenetrable suit of armor. No, he pioneered our salvation through the world that you and I face daily."

~by Max Lucado, "No Wonder they Call Him the Savior"

I am weary...overwhelmed... angry... sad... frustrated... disappointed... hurt... tired... uncertain... scared... irritated

This was a long weekend as I dealt with emotions over a past relationship... as I dealt with things and attitudes that were unveiled in my heart... as I had to wait upon the Lord for a miracle... as I seek wisdom in raising my kids... as I wonder how the repairs on my vehicle will be fixed... as I question God... as I let myself get emotionally exhausted.

We went out of town this weekend. It was good until my vehicle broke down. God totally paved the way, and came through, but in the meantime, as I waited upon God, "ugly" stuff in me surfaced. Anger, irritation, frustration, harsh words, short-tempers, and impatience.

Doubt seethed its way into my mind, and from there, it went downhill. For the most part, I deal with my emotions and thoughts inwardly, until I "vomit" everything at once. Even then, what I feel inside isn't even close to what comes out of my mouth or attitude. What bothers me is that it is there! It's like a volcano brewing inside with all kinds of "ick", and if people really saw the inside of this volcano, they wouldn't even take a chance at being anywhere near it.

The same is with my heart. I'm sure people knew I was irritated this weekend, but if they had ANY clue just how much was brewing inside of me, they wouldn't have wanted to even be in the same state as me.

Put a person in an old environment, and watch the old stuff start to rise up in them.

In my safe little house, and in my comfortable little environment, I can keep my cool for the most part. I can control my environment, and therefore, I remain controlled. Put me in an environment that I can't control, and this monster of rage tries to escape.

I thought it was gone...

Pruning...and more pruning...and more pruning...

Ugh!!! But thank you God that you love us enough to not leave us as you found us!

(I haven't visited blogs for a few days, and probably won't for a few more. Please don't be offended if it seems as if I haven't stopped by or commented.)

March 13, 2009

Loving people...

Loving others right where they are at has always been hard for me. There's something in me that says, "Hey, I can fix this! Just do xyz and then you'll have it all together."

Anyone there with me?

It is hard to comprehend God's unfailing and uncompromisable love for me because I tend to love with conditions. There is NOTHING we can do to make God love us any more or any less than what He does right now. We are safe and secure in His love. He won't take it away because we sin or rebel. He won't even stop loving us if we tell Him we hate Him.

I have a tendency to be pretty transparent about my life, so if no one else really is willing to admit some of the things I talk about here, I'm sure I'll have enough for all of us:)

Step out of your "Christianity" box with me for a moment while I explore this.

Ouch, how can someone EVER say they hate God! Do they have any clue who God is? Don't they realize that God will strike them to the ground with multiple lightning bolts? Even to say, "God, I am sooooooo angry with you" would just not be "appropriate" because God's vengeance would be unspeakably horrific...

I told God I hated Him once...

...and I even knew God...

...and I survived to tell the story.

To make a long story short, my family life was not very good. I was living my life how I wanted to, doing things that I wanted to do without any regards for consequences. I drifted away from my relationship with God, and when


Step into my 12's


I have always been known for my big feet.
My shoes are size 12,
so sometimes, it's hard to find shoes.
This is my 12 year old
stepping on my size 12 flip-flops last summer.

He was a baby once.
He was very colic the first few months of his life.
He lived in the baby swing or in the car most of those months. I ran the vacuum and the shower a lot. I don't remember if the noise was to
soothe him or soothe myself.

He developed a sense of humor
at a young age. I don't know if
that was to entertain me or
to entertain him.

He had a lot of energy as a child.
I don't know who ran more, him
or me (chasing after him).

We've been through a lot together...
He's been in foster care.
He's seen more abuse than any child should ever have to see. He's loved God. He's hated God. He's experienced the pain of rejection and abandonment more than I would like to admit. He's seen marriage and he's seen divorce. He's seen how alcohol and drugs can destroy people and families. His world has been shipwrecked more than once.

God loves him...

More than I ever can!

God protects him...

more than I ever can!

God has a plan for him...

bigger than I can imagine!

God is a better parent...

than I will ever be!

So...

why do I worry so much???


Some of his hurt came from me, others from his father. Some came just because he make poor choices, others because adults in his life made bad choices. Even though I caused some of his pain, I've always wanted to protect him...(smother him). Letting go of him was never an option, until recently.

In the past year, God has shown me that I have clung too tightly to both of my sons, especially my 12-year old. As I learned about spiritual warfare, I allowed fear to control his environment. "Unless I am there, you don't go." That means that he doesn't go to friends' houses because he might just have to learn mistakes from experiences. He might make bad choices that I do not want him to explore. His friend may not believe in God and therefore, is not a good person...

It's moments like this when I see my own written words that I wish I wasn't so transparent on my blog. I've been so busy sheltering my son from life out of fear that he might make a poor choice that I haven't allowed him to learn from mistakes, and seek God for himself.

Instead, I have driven him away from God and away from myself, creating an environmental of hostility and rage.

Now, being the wonderful bloggy friends you are, you will tell me that there are boundaries and guidelines that we have to raise our kids under. We do have to discipline and guide our kids in the way they should go. This is not what I'm talking about.

It is the underlying rebellion (fear, lack of trust) towards God saying, "If I let go of my son, I do not trust you to work out his salvation. I do not trust you to keep him safe and I do not trust that You will be a Father to the fatherless."

BUT...

If I believe the words of the Bible, God's holy Word...

(which I do)

...then that means that God will do those things plus more. He will seek out my son just like He sought out me. He will keep knocking on the door of his heart just as He did mine. He will love him unconditionally as He does me. He will restore and heal his heart, just as He did mine.

He is a good kid...

I am a good mom...

God is a good God...

That means that this journey is really good!

~So, Heavenly Father, just as Zach stepped into my size 12 shoes, I ask that as I release him into your arms, that You would step into his 12-year old life and be the Father and Lord that he needs. I relinquish my control over him to control his world, and I receive the guidance and direction of the Holy Spirit to direct him in the way that You want him to go. I release my ideas and standards of how I think his life should look, and I receive the wisdom to teach him your standards for his life. And Father, even if his relationship with You doesn't look like I think it should, I trust that You are working in his life and in his heart to make him the young man you want him to be. Protect him and pour the working power of the blood of Jesus into his life, In Jesus' precious name, Amen









March 9, 2009

The only thing good

The more I allow God to deal with my heart, the more I see a need for a Savior. On my own, I am NOTHING! I am simply one person living for myself, doing whatever I please, for only selfish reasons.

With God, I am someone. I am significant. I have an eternal perspective. I am whole. I am holy and blameless before my Lord. I am royalty. I am accepted. I am precious. I am unconditionally loved. I am cherished. I am adored. I have purpose. I have worth. I am found and sought out. I am chosen. I am forgiven.

On my own, I am a sinner. With Christ, I am a saint who occasionally sins.

On my own, what a wretched woman I am. With Christ, I can stand boldly before the throne of God with confidence.

On my own, my guilt and shame overcome me. With Christ, I am more than a conquerer.

On my own, I lie and wallow in the pit I create for myself. With Christ, I crawl out, and refuse to go back in.

On my own, my pain and regrets are ever before me. With Christ, I press on towards the goal, forgetting what is behind, and choose to go forward by forgiving myself.

I am covered by the blood of Jesus Christ, and therefore, I am a victor and so are you. On our own, we truly are nothing. I love this song and everytime I hear it, it comforts me, and reminds me of who I am and the person that God views me as. Be blessed as you watch it. The lyrics follow.






I heard someone say the other day
They'd seen in me true love displayed
Blessed by something I had done for them
No sooner had they said these words
I found myself somehow disturbed
Uneasy as I took their compliment
Cause I know the heart inside this man
I know the truth of who I am...

The only thing that's good in me is Jesus
The only thing that's good in me is Jesus
I know me well enough to know
No matter what this life may show
The only thing that's good in me is Jesus

If you could walk the hallways of my heart
And see things as they really are
I wonder if you might be surprised
Seeing faded walls of pride and fear
Rooms I've filled with faithless tears
And corners where I've stood in compromise
But you'd see the work His grace has done
You'd know just how far I've come

In a thousand years
When the dust of this world clears
And I look back on my life
And see in perfect light

The only thing that's good in me is Jesus
The only thing that's good in me is Jesus
I know me well enough to know
No matter what this life may show
The only thing that's good in me is Jesus

The only thing that's good in me is Jesus
The only thing that's good in me is Jesus
I know me well enough to know
No matter what this life may show
The only thing that's good in me is Jesus

March 8, 2009

Obedience and Praise!

I am in awe at how incredible God is!

God gave me a vehicle today! I paid nothing for it...

My church family paid for this vehicle...

and delivered it to my driveway...

plus put gas in it and gave me a gas card on top of it...

It's the nicest vehicle I've ever had.

with more buttons and gadgets inside than I've ever seen before...

My key chain unlocks and locks my door... I guess they call it keyless entry:)

I have never had this before, or anything as nice...

My kids think it's cool (That's huge for a 12 year old boy! He thinks mom is cool now)

When the car was delivered to me, my mouth dropped. When I sat inside of it, my heart was overwhelmed. God knew I needed a vehicle as mine died 2 weeks ago, but He went above and beyond anything I could have EVER imagined.

Isaiah 55:9
"As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.

I have been on quite a journey with trusting God and having faith that He really does know what He's doing. With letting my husband go and filing for a divorce, I questioned over and over and sought the Lord over and over on the way He wanted me to go. When I was overwhelmed with my child and clueless how to help him, I had to choose to give him grace over judgement. When my other son was recently having problems in school, I had to choose to go in a direction I really didn't want to go, but chose to trust God despite my feelings. When a vehicle I was really hoping to get on Friday didn't come through, I said, "o-kay God, I need a vehicle. I put it in your hands."

I chose to trust...

and God came through in EVERY situation!

The vehicle didn't come through on Friday because God had a better one to give me on Sunday. He wanted to spoil me. If you don't believe that God spoils His children and delights to pour out His blessings upon them, then you need to spend a week in my shoes.

Our blessings aren't always material, but He is always pouring out blessings to those who He calls His children. When my kids are obedient and generous with their stuff or even themselves, I love to bless them. If my child whines and complains about things and chooses to be ungrateful for the things they have, the last thing I want to do for them is to bless them with a treat.

I believe God is the same way. If we aren't responsible enough to have something, He is not going to give it to us. If we whine and complain about our life and how unfair it is, why would He want to bless us?

Living in an attitude of praise is hard. Especially when life doesn't go the way you hoped it would. It's hard when you are stressed and hurting. It's hard when you have to parent by yourself (with or without a spouse), It's hard when you are in physical pain and nothing seems to take the edge off. It's hard when your checkbook gets slammed shut by a quickly falling economy. It's hard when you see life through the depression that tries to suffocate you. It's hard when people you love get sick and die. It's hard when a child or a loved one suffers innocently through a cruel and unjust act. It's hard when there is no food in the cupboards and you have to choose between grocery shopping or paying your mortgage. It is hard to praise when life is hard...

But God requires it...

AND He honors it!!!

God inhabits our praises, and He multiplies the praise we give Him, and lavishes it back onto our lives.

Even after all God has done for me to show His faithfulness and provisions, you would think that I would find it easy to praise. But I, too, struggle, during the hard times, to give God praise. At first it's easy too, but after time when relief still doesn't come, it is more difficult. That is when we have to push praise even more because our breakthrough is just around the corner!

I had a chance even on Saturday to buy a vehicle out of desperation. God quietly whispered "no". I went to bed discouraged, but chose to trust and wait upon the Lord. I woke up (late) this morning, still discouraged, and even thought about not going to church. But I chose to be obedient and go anyway...

I could have missed out on God's gift to me if:

  1. I stayed home from church to wallow in my self-pity.
  2. I had jumped to buy the vehicle on Saturday.
  3. I was not disciplined with my finances a week earlier. (God's been speaking to me about being disciplined in this area)
  4. I chose to fall into temptation with a reoccurring sin also on Saturday. (I believe God was blessing my obedience).
  5. I hadn't been training my mind to take every thought captive to the obedience of Christ.

I truly believe there were many "tests" I passed these last two weeks that God wanted to bless me for. Praising in the midst of the storm was one of those tests. Being obedient despite my feelings was another.

God honors the praise we give Him. Some days, I could only muster up a little praise. Other days, I had a lot. God honors that! He sees your heart, just as He saw mine. He sees how hard you are trying to live for Him, and He wants to bless you. Are your hands open to receive? Is your heart prepared to obey? Is your soul ready to praise in this storm of your life? GOD IS Faithful! ALWAYS...

Do your part, so that God can do His! Don't give up! Your breakthrough is just around the corner! That thing that God is trying to birth in you is almost here! Praise Him with everything in you! Push on and press through your circumstance! Seek His face, turn towards Him! And EXPECT God to come through for you!!! The "waiting upon the Lord" is for His glory, so that His perfect timing and His perfect plan can shine through to you and everyone else around you!

When God asks you to lay down something, it's only because He has something better for you to hold in your heart and in your hands! Let go of that dream that has died, He has a better one for you! Let God blow your socks off and overwhelm your heart with His goodness and faithfulness!!!

Isaiah 55:9
"As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.


Blessings!!!
Heaven


March 4, 2009

Open Windows

Last night when I put one of my children to bed, he told me that there was cold wind blowing through his window. He always keeps his curtains closed, yet that was one of the windows that I didn't put plastic on this year. It was cold out, but I decided to check it anyway. Lo and behold, his window was open about an inch. No wonder it's cold in his room! After trying to figure out why it was open, we concluded that he didn't shut it all the way the last time he decided to call me through the window (which was about 2 weeks ago). We shut the window, he slid under an extra blanket of warmth, and dozed off as his room began to warm up.



I had a dream last night about the windows in my home. I've been trying to dismiss it because of our incident last night, yet I feel like I am to explore it more. In the dream, there were 4-5 windows that were open about an inch. However, I didn't realize it because the shades were down. The windows weren't locked and secure, and therefore, someone from the outside had opened them. I went around my house, and locked each window, but I remember being amazed that these windows were open because until I examined them close-up or intentionally checked them out, I had no clue they were open. Then I woke up...

As I said before, I am listening to "Get out of the pit" on CD by Beth Moore. God has been showing me that I need to live life deliberately, meaning I need to be aware of my thoughts, actions, attitudes, etc. I need to make conscious choices throughout my day to go in the direction God wants me to go. I need to immediately take all my thoughts captive to the obedience of Christ. I need to be mindful of the schemes of the enemy, so that I will not fall into the traps he tries to lay before me.





1 Peter 5:8
Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.

Ephesians 6:11
Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil's schemes.

Windows...God showed me that just as I had to look for the "spider webs" in my children's lives, as well as my own, I also needed to check the spiritual windows of our lives.

There are ways we allow the enemy into our lives, which gives Him a right to hang out and create havoc. Most often referred to as "open doors", we can be unaware that that they have even been left open. How does this happen? It can be as simple as the music we listen to, the movies we watch, actions, unconfessed sin, the words we speak, unforgiveness, and bitterness to name a few. Or as complex as generational curses and things in your ancestry. I am not going to dive into this too much, but I would be more than happy to suggest a few resources if desired.

As the spiritual head of my children, it is my job to seek God regarding the spiritual temperature of our home. It is my job to pray, pray, pray for my children. It is my job to speak life into their lives, and also declare their futures and destinies into God's hands. It is my job to pray spiritual protection over them, and to limit what comes into this home.




I need to ask God what spiritual windows are open in our lives, and then in prayer, close them, lock them, and refuse to open them again.

Life is a journey and not meant to be an overwhelming task. Rome wasn't build in a day, and neither were we. For me, it's taken me 33 years to get to where I am today, and changes don't happen overnight.




~Father God, show us the "windows" we've left open in our lives in which we've given the devil a foothold. I thank you that You do not show us these things to overwhelm us and discourage us, but so that we can deal with them, and move on in the things of God. Show us one thing we can do today to be active in shutting these windows. Place your protection around us and around our homes and families in the name of Jesus. We are yours, and greater are You in us than he that is in the world! Teach us to deliberately live life. Teach us to be aware of the thoughts we are thinking, and quicken us to take any thought not glorifying to You captive according to 2 Corinthians 10:5. Expose the lies and schemes of the enemy so that as we put on the full armor of God in Ephesians 6, we would be prepared and ready to stand. Lord, you have given us all the tools to fight the good fight and the spiritual battle in our lives. Open our eyes and our ears to hear from You today...In Jesus' matchless name, Amen

(images taken from www.creativemyk.com)

March 3, 2009

Pruning...

"Pruning" hurts...

I love where God is taking me, but...




that means I have to leave some things behind.


The extra "luggage" I'm carrying is weighing me down! Do you have some luggage that you could do without? I can think in more literal terms, and say, "Yes, I have some pounds that need to go", (Quite a few actually)...

But I believe God is telling His people that there are some spiritual "pounds" that need to go. Things that weigh us down and that get in
the way of fulfilling our God-given destinies.



Most of us are trying to step up higher to the level God is calling us to, yet we are failing because we refuse to let go of some of the baggage we carry with us, and the weight prevents us from climbing...

I have let go TONS of stuff in my life: abuse issues, both physical and sexual; abandonment issues; having an alcoholic dad...you know, all the "big" stuff. But what about the "little" stuff that tends to suffocate us when it builds up...the stuff we don't see until God shows up and shines His light on our reflection.




Ugh! Pride...bad attitudes...being "short" with family members...refusing to forgive...taking up someone else's offense...being impatient...controlling...judgmental ...Justifying our actions and attitudes, "Well, God made me this way, so get over it!"... Favoring one child over the other... not offering grace because you're having a bad day ... victim mentalities, "It's not fair! Why is everyone always pointing out my sins?" - "Why are they getting blessed and I'm not!" - "What about me?" ... Seeking acceptance from anything or anyone other than God for the purpose of building your self-esteem... escaping reality through television or computer or something else... giving the "silent treatment"...

O-kay, this list could go on and on, but I am hoping by now that you get my point. If not, then you are not listening to the voice inside you showing you the areas of your life that needs some "tweaking". God doesn't show us these things to shame us or condemn us. He loves us too much to leave us where He found us.

But He does have an awesome plan and future for our lives, and He's calling us to rise above all the "junk" of this world, and become the men and women of God He's called us to be.

That means we have to leave some things behind...




and sometimes even people...


ADHD and me...

I open my mailbox
and what do I see?




I was surprised at
what was staring back at me...




A mangled green envelope,
I could tell it had been loved.



with a firetruck logo and
her name written above...



It was bloggy friend ADHDme
from Monkeys are Funny



With a homemade present
inside...awwww, she's such a honey!





Wrapped so carefully,
A refrigerator magnet I saw...





And a note found inside
saying Mine was the best blog!
(Just kidding, click on the pic to enlarge)



So thank you to Mary
who is ever so quite contrary...
who added to my fridge
with her great creative edge...

Bloggy friends,
Brighten someone's day today...

And go visit ADHDme...
Make sure to leave her
2-3 comments in a row,
and tell her I sent you:)
I'm sure she won't mind at all...

"We like her, we really, really like her!"

March 2, 2009

change of plans

O-kay, Change of plans...

No tumbleweed analogies right yet...

God is birthing a really awesome thing in my life and I am too excited and tooooooooo excited and tooooooooooooooo excited about it to blog about tumbleweeds. Did I tell you I am excited????? Woo hoo! The joy of the Lord is in the house today!

First of all, I have to apologize to 4 winners of my homemade give-a-way last week, because I have to post pictures before they actually get to see them. (I am in a hurry so I won't link it, you'll just have to go back a couple posts and read about it if you would like to). Sami, Deb, Paulette, and Tracy, even though you will see your name picture here first, there are still more surprises with it that you will receive in the mail. Those I will not share here because it's words and verses that God gave me for each of you while drawing your picture.

O-kay, coming soon...........

An opportunity for whoever would like to get name pictures. It's in the works right now, and a new blog to go with it. Just laying the foundation right now.

God is doing so many cool things in my life right now. As I give up my "right" to grievances in my life or to the people who I "just have to change", God is shining so brightly! I am seeing "icky" stuff about me, but the more I am willing to acknowledge it's there, and be willing for God to take out the "grime" in me, the more He's been allowed to do in my life.

God has been showing me all these things that have been hidden in my life (or else I refused to see them) that He wants to change: attitudes, gossip, pride, control issues, selfishness, resentment, offense, unforgiveness, cycles of destruction, self-gratification, self-seeking, self-..... you name it, it's probably there.

O-kay, so at first, I went into the whole thing..."what a wretched woman I am...", and got kinda' discouraged and depressed. Then, I went into the stage of..."Yep, those things are there...well God, how do we get rid of these?" (This has been a process, as it usually is, and you have witnessed some of these in my previous posts.) Now, well, not sure where I am now, except in the arms of God, with Him leading the way.

Oh, there are so many things that have come to light this morning, but I am excited! I am excited to get this "junk" out of my life, and move forward. I am listening to "Get out of the pit" by Beth Moore. WOW, good stuff. I want to blog forever and share the goodness of God, but I can't type fast enough and I type 50 wpm. That's how fast my brain is going:) God is sooooooooooooo good, and I am excited to see where this journey is going.

With this new thing God is doing, I really won't have time to visit your blogs or respond to your comments right now, as I am getting ready to "dive" into the ocean before me (well, I'll jump into the river first, gotta' start somewhere.)

Blessings and here are the pics done for my 3 bloggy friends!







March 1, 2009

A gift from Colorado AND its Life application...

I have the most awesome friends in the whole wide world!!!





I have a childhood memory that I have tried to explain to my children for years, but no matter how hard I've tried, they could not grasp what mommy was talking about,
UNTIL...

This came in the mail on Friday...


ALL THE WAY FROM COLORADO!!!


TUMBLEWEEDS...



I was forewarned this box was coming, so when it arrived, I made a big deal about the surprise inside. Yes, my boys were surprised alrightie, but not quite the way I had hoped.


See, I grew up in Colorado. Not the pretty mountain side, but the flat, dusty, & tumbleweed-filled side, 30 minutes from the border of Nebraska. We constantly had sand storms, and "tumbleweed storms", along with being able to watch tornadoes on the ground in the distance of 30-40 miles away. My kids understand the tornadoes, they also understand the sand storms, but they couldn't grasp the concept of tumbleweeds, let alone the swarms of these caused by the wind.
Ya'll, it was definitely the coolest childhood memory I had...
So, thanks to my wonderful friend, we now have a tumbleweed here in Wisconsin. Now that it has arrived, I cannot get rid of it...It cost $10 to ship this lightweight weed, and I cannot justify throwing it out, SO............
I have a tumbleweed in my living room...
on display for others to check out...
maybe I could charge admission...
...yet the only ones interested in seeing my tumbleweeds would be cousins who grew up in CO with me, who also have tried to explain their tumbleweed stories to relatives, friends, spouses, and children. My cousin, Tonjia, is going to bring her husband to see it. My sister is going to bring her kids to see it. Someone said I should shelac it and decorate it as a tree....don't know about that one:)
But...
...maybe I could charge admission...
On Tuesday, I will be tying this story in with a situation I am currently dealing with, but for today, I just wanted to have fun. If you have never seen a tumbleweed storm, you have to watch these YouTube videos. They are short, plus it will lay the groundwork for my next blog post! Enjoy and see ya Tuesday!!!
Check this out!!!



Tumbleweeds come in all shapes and sizes




They can be fun...or not so fun...

See ya Tuesday!

Trusting God

My son has been pretty sick lately. Even though he's an adult, I still worry about him. I probably get annoying as I ask the same questi...