Category

THOUGHTS

One of the biggest desires of my heart in creating this blog, was to have the courage to speak up..to share what I have to say about things. I am not the most wise or well spoken individual, and I struggle so often to share what I’m hearing and learning from God, because of how aware I am of these facts. So often I have a thought about or response to something, but I belittle its significance and just let it go. I have not been faithful to pursue part of this blogs’ purpose, out of insecurity and doubt I so easily allow myself to give into.

But God has been revealing to me more and more and more (He’s had to remind me A LOT), that He hears and sees exactly where I’m coming from and that is really all that matters. This is all for Him. He values what I have to say and even if it doesn’t come out in the best, most eloquent and precise manner, even if it seems like no one is listening, reading, or cares… it’s somehow still a thing of beauty and value to HIM. I don’t have to have all of the right words, I don’t have to impress anyone. I can just be me, pursuing and learning from Jesus. Striving to serve Him fully with my life, and trust that the Holy Spirit will grant me with strength and wisdom to proclaim His goodness well.

So I said all of that to say this: I want to be faithful to write more about my hope in Christ here. I want to share more about the thoughts, joys, weaknesses, triumphs, trials and restorations of my faith. I want to speak in confidence about things,  knowing that regardless of all the weaknesses I see in myself, God is being glorified. It’s an act of worship unto Him when I open up about what He’s been saying, doing, teaching and taking me through. I want my life to be nothing less than a representation of who He is. I don’t want to hide or be ashamed of a single trial I face. I don’t want to struggle with sin and not share with someone else how I was able to overcome or learn from that sin. I want the gospel to be proclaimed and understood more fully, and it’s my prayer that this platform can be used to accomplish that in some way.This blog post was supposed to be about something completely different, but when I sat down to write it, this is what spilled out!

I hope that this has somehow encouraged and challenged you, friend. Be encouraged that you are loved, paid attention to, and heard by God. Even if you’re feeling as alone and inadequate as can be, HE is with you. HE sees and knows you better than anybody, and what He sees is pure gold. HE will never fail you. Run to Him with all that you have and ask for Him to reveal the truth of who He is, what He’s done for you and who you are to Him. And challenge yourself to proclaim Him boldly and more actively in your life. It may seem like we have so much to lose sometimes, but the truth and greatest hope is that we have everything to gain by being a willing, humble vessel unto God.

Yes, and I will rejoice,  for I know that through your prayers and the help of the Spirit of Jesus Christ this will turn out for my deliverance, as it is my eager expectation and hope that I will not be at all ashamed, but that with full courage now as always Christ will be honored in my body, whether by life or by death. For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.”

-Philippians 1:19-21

Thanks for reading!

 

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In A perfect, sinless world, this task would be a piece of cake.  There would be nothing but peace, joy and unity among us. We would love and respect each other effortlessly. We would place the feelings and needs of others before our own, without even batting an eyelash. We wouldn’t struggle with things like offense, jealousy or bitterness.  But we do not live in a perfect world and we most definitely aren’t perfect people. We fail to treat each other with love and respect all the time. We say goodbye to friendships, stir up gossip, and waste away in our bitterness over petty misunderstandings and silly quarrels. And I know full well that there can be deeper, more painful and very complicated causes for this, too,  but regardless of how little or severe the circumstance, the way we are called to respond does not change.

We are a rotten bunch, and in our own strength, we cannot change the course of this troubling cycle we find ourselves in.  It is only Jesus, His perfection and His righteousness that give us the ability to love, forgive, honor and value others. It’s only by His grace and His power in us that we can rise above our sinful nature, give selfishness, pride and bitterness a knuckle sandwich and serve our brothers and sisters selflessly. Jesus Christ is the only hope we have for loving others deeply and serving them well.

Phillipians 1:9-11 says:

And it is my prayer that your love may abound more and more, with knowledge and all discernment, so that you may approve what is excellent, and so be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.”

This cannot be accomplished by our own will power. We cannot follow through on Paul’s charge to us outside of communion with God and a desire to learn the truth of His Word. When we fail to set our gaze on Christ and all that is of Christ, we fail to possess true wisdom and discernment, leading us down that nasty, selfish and loveless path. We must strive to partake of the bread of life (it’s called that for a reason, folks!) as often as we possibly can. We must daily draw from the well and drink up its living water. Not only to gain more knowledge about Christ, but to apply what we’ve  learned to the way we live every part of our lives and how we treat others.

I couldn’t sleep last night and these were some of the things on my mind. I am daily in need of these reminders and just wanted to share this on the blog in case it hit home for someone else.  Whether you’re battling with hurt, anger, pride, discouragement or even hatred, know that the grace of God is greater than all our sin and it has the power to renew our minds and hearts. He is the true and only one who can save us from our mess, free us from our chains and fill us with a pure, righteous and holy love towards others.

 

Grace, grace, God’s grace

Grace that will pardon and cleanse within

Grace, grace, God’s grace 

Grace that is greater than all our sin

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Today I am celebrating 3 wonderful years of being married to my very best friend! These past 3 years with Japheth have been the happiest and absolute best of my life.  I remember daydreaming about my future husband as a young girl, wondering what he would be like and how our lives would look together. Any dream or expectation I could have ever had was exceeded beyond measure when God brought this man to me. I feel treasured by him every single day and he fills our home with grace and deep, deep love. He doesn’t go a day without telling me that I am beautiful and that he loves me. He is the funniest person I have ever met, constantly bringing joy and hysterical laughter to my heart. He treats me with the utmost kindness, patience and gentleness. He is so motivated, so incredibly gifted and so hardworking.  He encourages, pushes and supports all that I do. Whenever I come to him with an idea or dream of mine, he immediately searches for ways to make it a reality. Whenever I see a piece of furniture or home decor that I love but can’t afford,  he goes right out  and just builds it for me. When I am stressed out (story of my life), discouraged or scared, he is always there to comfort me, pray with me and make me laugh. More importantly, though, he reminds me of the goodness of God and the greatness of His love for me everyday. 

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In the short time that Japheth and I have been married, we’ve been on some wild adventures and endured great hardships. We’ve celebrated many victories and have had to face some of the most crippling circumstances together. But I can honestly say, that it is because of Christ and only because of Christ, that we have hope, strength and rest for our souls when our world is shaken. Because of His mercy and grace over us, we can be fully equipped to love and care for each other in every season of life and in the very best way. God has blessed me far more than I deserve, with a man that desires to honor Him above all else, leading our home righteously and in turn loving me well. We have changed and grown a lot over the years as individuals, but even more so in our relationship with each other. God has used these past few years, all of the triumphs, failures and heartbreaks, to strengthen our faith in Him and to bring us even closer together. Our lives are not perfect, we are definitely not perfect and we don’t have marriage “figured out”,  but there is such peace in knowing that the Creator of all things, the One who IS perfect! He is with us. He is guiding our steps. He is faithful to lead and teach us along the way, as we remain faithful and obedient to Him. Our prayer is to daily live out Ephesians 5 towards one another and to bring glory to God in all that we do. I know that there are many more adventures and struggles to come in our lives, but there is not a soul in the world that I would rather face them with than Japheth. Happy Anniversary, to my favorite person, my leader, my bae, my snuggle buddy, my dance partner, my sweetie, my hero, my love. It is the greatest gift and joy being your wife. I love you!

“Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children. And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.

… for at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light (for the fruit of light is found in all that is good and right and true), and try to discern what is pleasing to the Lord. Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them. For it is shameful even to speak of the things that they do in secret. But when anything is exposed by the light, it becomes visible,  for anything that becomes visible is light. Therefore it says,

“Awake, O sleeper,
    and arise from the dead,
and Christ will shine on you.”

 Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is.  And do not get drunk with wine, for that is debauchery, but be filled with the Spirit, addressing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody to the Lord with your heart, giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, submitting to one another out of reverence for Christ.

Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord.  For the husband is the head of the wife even as Christ is the head of the church, his body, and is himself its Savior. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit in everything to their husbands. Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word,  so that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish. In the same way husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ does the church, 30 because we are members of his body.  “Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.” This mystery is profound, and I am saying that it refers to Christ and the church. However, let each one of you love his wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband.” 

Ephesians 5: 1-2, 8-33

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