Saturday, June 23, 2007

We are all Adopted

Passage Ephesians 1:5 "He predestined us to be adopted as His sons through Jesus Christ, in accordance with His pleasure and will..."
In the valleys of life when we feel lower than low and so alone it is reflection on verses such as this that can surround us with immeasurable love.  To love your child whom you watched/felt grow within you/your spouse it seems nearly without question that you love them enough that you would give your own life to save theirs.  But to feel that same depth of love for a child you have chosen and adopted seems to me to have even more special meaning to it.  I don't want to downplay the special bond between parents and child when you've been witness to one of life's great miracles.  I personally loved the experience of being pregnant with my felt like it is the only real chance we are given to help God with a miracle, you know?  However, if I had not been able to get pregnant I do not know if I could have made the choice to adopt.  It is a choice, which I feel really makes it open up your heart and home with all of your love to adopt someone else's child.  God chooses us, He adopts us as His very own!!!  It is like He says to us "it doesn't matter where you come from, or who you are, all that matters is whose you are and I choose for you to be Mine!"  We need only believe, have that faith in Him and His Son, take Him at His Word and trust in His promises to us!  He's already chosen us - we just need to let Him in!  " accordance with His pleasure and will..." It is His pleasure to call us His own, His will is to adopt us thru His Son.  I pray you have your heart open to our heavenly Father who adopts us and calls us His very own!  I pray you are blessed and protected and surrounded by His love, joy and peace.  I ask that we please continue to keep Summer and her family in our prayers, along with continuing our prayers for our military and their families and always for each other as adopted Brothers and Sisters in Christ.  Have a blessed and awesome weekend and weekahead!!
Love in Christ,

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Lean on God, not yourself

To all dads, grandpas, uncles, step-dads, and special men who act as surrogate dads where needed I pray that today you feel as special as you make everyone around you feel all of the time!  Happy Father's Day!!!
Proverbs 3:5 ~ "Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding"
This is a lesson I am constantly relearning...this is why I love the thought that we are ever becoming Christians, it gives us reassurance that we are always in the learning and becoming process and while we may try our hardest we may still make mistakes.  We must remember that we will make mistakes and when we do we need to repent to God and when we ask His forgiveness we must also forgive ourselves.  Learning to trust in God with all of our heart and to lean on His Word and not our own understanding is a hard lesson.  But it is a crucial one because as people in this world we are constantly feeling the need to be self-sufficient, to be independent and strong.  However, we are not going to hold up for very long if we lean on ourselves alone...we can do all thing in Christ though - we just need to push ourselves to put all of our trust in God that He will (and does!) keep His promises!  His Word is full of His promises to us!  Face it, He is crazy about us!  A love we will never be able to fully comprehend...and if we can hardly comprehend His love for us because it is so vast and deep and all encompassing then how can we expect to lean on our own understanding?  No, it is a much better plan to give it all to God and let Him run the show and trust 100% that He really knows what He's doing.  His plan and His timing are perfect, He is perfect!  Let us pray this week to receive His Spirit to strengthen us and give us the ability to trust fully in God for everything in our lives.  My daily prayers continue to ask our Lord to bless and protect each of you and surround you with His love, joy and peace.  I ask you to each please join me in taking a few moments each day to continue our prayers for Summer and her family-praising, thanking and asking for continued healing-to continue our daily prayers of protection for our military and their families, for all who are suffering and in need of His healing touch whether physically, mentally or emotionally.  Let us also remember to pray daily for each other.  Have a superbly awesome weekend and week ahead!!!
Love through Christ,
1 Thessalonians 5:23a ~ "May God Himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through."

Take Your Leap of Faith {Big or Small} - 6/10/2007 Thoughts

{My apologies for the delay in posting this message}

"My heart is racing, and my feet are weak, As I walk to the edge; I know there is no turning back, Once my feet have left the ledge; And in the rush I hear a voice, That's telling me to take a leap of faith...So here I go"
    I have always been very inspired by music, it's something that seems to be able to speak to my very heart and soul.  So, when I was praying for God to please speak to me and if it was His will to please grant me wisdom and guidance that moving to NC is truly His will for my family and me, it made perfect sense to me that He answered me in the lyrics of the above Christian Rock song I have come to love...  The artist is Steven Curtis Chapman and the lyrics to the entire song can be found at   I just knew that was God planting in my heart the definitive answer, "yes, this is where you are supposed to go."  As I walked into the Mooresville church that will become our new church home next month I felt it was all reaffirmed again.  People were overjoyed to see us, doors were opening left and right for job opportunities for both my husband and myself, it felt like...home.  When we moved from IL to VA we knew at that time it was the right move for us, and we have an amazingly generous, loving, wonderful Uncle here so we weren't moving somewhere where we knew no one...but there was still a slightly nervous energy about the unknown.  In the 3+ years we've lived here, not only have we grown in our faith but we've learned more about trusting God and felt His presence in our lives in so many ways.  So it comes as a very small but pleasant surprise that we are not at all nervous, scared, apprehensive or any other negative emotion about our impending move next month.  It is truly our time to take this leap of faith, hand in hand with God in the lead and dive into our next adventure on God's path for our lives.  It's not an easy breezy choice made lightly or quickly...all big decisions require many hours, days and if time allows weeks/months of prayer before taking a leap of faith that you believe God is guiding you to.  Especially since our "human instinct" is resistant to change.  But God didn't make us this way, He made us without the spirit of fear.  He made us in His image, we are strong when we remain in Him.  It is a conscious choice, one we each are faced with not just on a daily basis but most days on a moment by moment, situation by situation basis where we are pushed and tempted and tested.  To make the best and right choice every time we need to find what it is that speaks God's word to us it by hearing His word read to us from the Bible?  Then we should invest in an audio Bible we can listen to and meditate on daily.  Maybe it's by reading His Word silently to ourselves and then we should spend time each day reading from our Bibles and quieting our minds to focus fully on Him.  Maybe, like me, it is by hearing it musically in which case tune your radio to the local Christian music station or pop in your favorite cassette, CD {or whatever technical device} and let the joyous praises lift your heart and mind to glory and honor our Father in heaven.  I pray this week that no matter what decisions you are faced with, big or small, that you are able to quiet your hearts and minds and hear God's Spirit guide you to His path for your life.  I know He wants to pour down His blessings upon you until your cup is overflowing, allow Him access to do so by placing your unyielding faith in Him in every situation.  I implore you to each please continue to join me in remembering Summer, our troops and each other in our daily prayers.  I remain ever thankful that God allows me to come to you each week and share His love and Word through my thoughts and writings.  I am also continually praying that our loving Father surrounds you with His love, favor, blessings and protection.  Have an awesome week ahead!!
Love through Christ,

Saturday, June 2, 2007

Kindness Starts at Home...with you!

Ephesians 4:32 "Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you."
I've seen this email floating about that gives scenes from a day in the life of one woman where she was kind and courteous in passing to a stranger but then when she got home she was short and rude with her own family.  It is a good lesson to be kind to one another but it is not to be forgotten that we must not forget to be kind to the ones we love the most and hold dearest and are blessed to have living under the same roof with us, no matter who they may be.  Don't get me wrong, I know how some days...dare I say many days, it is easier to be kind to a stranger in passing because they have never wronged you before.  That stranger never left the seat up so you fall in during that middle of the night run, nor did they nag you 15 times about taking out the garbage or folding the laundry...the people we live with have their habits, some which may get under our skin.  However, we must look in the mirror and ask ourselves if we don't also have a few habits that some others in our home may perceive as annoying.  Truthfully?  Come on.  Okay, I'll go first...OF COURSE I DO!  I know I am FAR from perfect.  I know I am a work in progress and I think the first item of business should be to take the advice of Paul in the Fourth Chapter of his letter to the church at Ephesus.  I am going to focus on being kind and compassionate to the others in my home.  My hope is that as I practice these fruits of the Spirit within my own family that they will become second nature as I go out into the world each day and interact with others.  Let's pray together this week that we can act with kindness and compassion towards those who we share a roof with.  May God grant us His Spirit's guidance each time we feel the urge to speak or act unkindly that He may help us stay on His path to becoming more and more like Him, especially at home.  Please continue to join me in praying for healing of Nick, Wayne, Pat, Sharleen, Meg, Summer and this week I ad myself to the healing prayer as I am recovering from a nasty bout with the flu.  God is so good and He has a perfect plan with perfect timing for all of life's ups and downs.  I ask the we always remember our service men and women, and their families in our daily prayers...they give so much for us and prayer is such a wonderful gift and truly with how Big and mighty our God is it is not a small one!  Each week as I come to you with my thoughts, the thoughts God has inspired and blessed me with, I feel blessed and honored that you continue to allow me to be a small part of your week.  I pray our kind, loving, compassionate, merciful Lord will bless, protect and inspire each and everyone of you.  May He grant you His favor and blessings in the awesome week ahead!!!
Love through Christ,

{5-28-07} What Defines Who You Are?

Matthew 12:49-50 "Pointing to his disciples, he said, "Here are my mother and my brothers. For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother.""
I apologize for the tardiness of this week's thoughts but I hope you were all too busy enjoying your holiday weekend to notice they were missing from your inbox.  I have been thinking a lot about what I wanted to write about and then I realized that was the problem.  There I go again...trying to think!  I don't believe that God wants me to think about this, I believe He wants me to clear my mind and my heart and listen to what He wants me to type.  This happens to me a lot - I try to think about what I am going to type and come up blank...then I get my mind completely off of it and when I least expect hits me almost like lightening and like it was there the whole time trying to come out if only I would remember to let go.  That is what my personal journey has been about lately...letting go.  Letting go of past hurts, letting go of expectations, letting go of my illusion of control and finally letting God work His awesome and almighty plan for my life!  I've gotten much closer in my walk with Him and gotten at least somewhat better at letting go but then this weekend I slipped back into old patterns and tried to do it on my own.  When all I want to do is to serve Him better!  So, I find myself this evening praying my way back into His arms and also hoping that this makes sense to all of you.  I believe a big part of letting go and letting God is realizing that you do not define who you are by what you have done or where you come the 12th Chapter of Matthew our Lord's mother approached and when someone told Jesus she was waiting outside He replied first by asking Who is my mother..." and then He pointed at His disciples and said, "" I do not think that Jesus was trying to undermine the bonds of family here but rather He was showing us that in Christ we are all children of God.  We should all work together to do God's will here on earth.  Ultimately, our family is a blessing that we enjoy while we are here but our true family is much larger and has more love to be shared than we can even imagine.  Not everyone is blessed to have a loving earthly family...but I am coming to find that no matter where you come from, a large earthly family or a small one or none at all, no matter what your family is like or how they treat you or how you are perceived in their eyes...none of that matters because God defines who you are.  He is your Father and in His eyes you are amazing, you are one of a kind, He made you and molded you and knew your name before the world began.  He created Adam and Eve and thus all of us even knowing that it would cost Him the price of crucifying His son to save save you!  I pray you feel in your heart God's presence, His love, His acceptance and approval of you, of who you are and of who you are becoming each and every day through prayer and time with Him!  I pray that we can all focus on being thankful for the good things in our families but also being thankful that God is ultimately our Father and the only one who defines who we are!!  I ask that we please continue to lift each other up in prayer, remembering Summer, Nick, Wayne, Pat, Sharleen, Meg and all who are in need of His divine healing touch.  On this Memorial Day let us remember especially our brothers and sisters in the military, armed forces, marines, air force, navy, special forces, police, firefighters, and all other service men and women.  Let us pray for their safety as they voluntarily work to keep us safe!  Let us thank our Father for each and every one of them, present and past who He has given the strength, honor and courage to stand guard and be our earthly angels in uniform.  I continue to be honored and feel truly blessed to be able to come to you each week with my thoughts.  I pray my Father and yours will bless, protect and inspire each of you and grant you His favor for a blessed and awesome week ahead!!
Love through Christ,