Blessed Beyond Measure

We all have things that come up in our life that put us in a state of temporary anxiety. Any life changing event can send us in to turmoil. We have bills and no money to pay them. We argue with our spouse or significant other. Our teenager gets arrested or our daughter comes home pregnant. Our elderly parent falls breaks a hip. The triggers are not always negative. We get married. Buy a new dream house. Have kids or become grandparents. All if these things can disrupt our lives. These life things can always send us in to a tailspin of what ifs and whys.

We need to remember when life slams us with significant stress that we are blessed. The simple act of listing our blessings out in back and white can ground us and stop the anxiety from taking over. Sometimes it helps just to say, “I can’t handle this alone any more.” and tell some one. Acknowledge that there is this thing happening but here are the blessings despite the thing.

In the vain of practice what you preach. I will share with you that I am in a similar crazy phase in my life right now. I know that God is in control and I know that whatever the outcome it is His will and His chosen path for my life that I will take. The voices in my head, negativity, doubt, anxiety, want me to worry and look to the what could go wrong. To combat that here is my list of blessings.

I have a husband who loves me, a daughter who is successfully raising grandchildren who are little pillars in their community and parents who are proud of me.

This daughter is a strong independent, smart beautiful and compassionate girl.

I have grand parents, aunts, uncles,cousins, nieces and nephews who love me.

I have friends who are there to listen to me whine when life gets tough and celebrate with me when success comes.

I have a roof over my head, food in the kitchen, heat for the cold nights and a reliable car to get me around.

I have a job and a possibility for a better job. Both filled with wonderful people whom I respect and love.

I have an almost complete novel that I could not have written without the grace of God guiding me through it.

I have sweet fur children who love me unconditionally.

I have a church full of family who pray with me and are there when I need them.

I am in good health and improving everyday.

If you have any of the things in the list above you are blessed. If your list looks like mine you are blessed beyond measure. How inconsiderate of us to let the bumps in the road of life to distract us from the truth.

We are loved, blessed and important to God and other humans. Why do we worry?

 

 

 

 

What’s in a Name?

George Washington Carver once said, “Our creator is the same and never changes despite the names given Him by people here and in all parts of the world. Even if we gave Him no name at all, He would still be there, within us, waiting to give us good on this earth.”

I have never understood why people argue about who God is. It does not matter what religion you subscribe to or what name you pin on God. The creator and the universal greater power is the same god.

When Christians try to put God in a nice neat box and say this God, our God is the only God, they are limiting the very God they claim to be all powerful, all knowing, and omnipresent.

How can an omnipresent God go by one name? How can a spirit who speaks to each soul in a unique way for that soul go by one name?

We Christians say, “God has a plan for your life in His perfect will.” He loves us as individuals. It only stands to reason that each of us will have a personal connection to that power of God and call it what is right for us.

The power of creation, spirit and love that is in the universe, in nature, in us is the One True God. What you call this God is insignificant to the fact that you believe and love.

Even God said to Moses, “I am”. The fact God exists and that we find a connection through love and we share that love with our fellow living creatures, that is what is important.

I choose Christianity to serve God. It is arrogant of me to assume that my God will not reveal Himself to a person who chooses a different way to connect with their spirit. All connections to God are sacred. I will go as far to say that even religions that believe that creation it’s self is a spiritual connection to the true God. All other religions that worship one God is the same true God. The great Spirit, Allah, Yahweh, the Goddess, and other are a different connection to God.

I have not reconciled this truth with to the part of my faith that says 6 “Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. If you know me, you will know  my Father also. From now on you do know him and have seen him.” (John 14: 6-7)  Also, I haven’t connected it to my recent discovery that the Quran mentions Jesus more often that Mohammad. It doesn’t stop there, I see in other religions that there are other stories of the Messiah. These facts and others appear to make the connections between one God and all religions a truth.  

I believe that we Christians are making a big mistake by undermining the scope of who God is. We are molding Him to our image of God, when we should be encouraging others to connect to God in whatever way the spirit is calling them as individuals.

I will continue to search for a closer relationship with God and I encourage you to do the same.

Search for God with love, faith, and hope. The power of God’s Love will find you right where you are.

 

 

 

Struggling

I am really struggling with God right now. I find myself questioning why things are not going the way I think they should or the way that seems like the best way. I need God to move in my life in a way that is specific, so I pray. I have been here before with God and I know that He always comes through. He keeps His promises and I am always blessed.

This time I am full of doubt that what I need to happen will happen. I keep hearing myself say to God, “Ok, I can do this or that, just let me help move things along, and see what happens.” I instantly know it is the wrong answer. I know that I am to wait, trust and pray. I hate that answer. I want to act…I want  to do something, to react..anything!

Hence the struggle. Sit, wait….listen. remain faithful. Trust that God is in control. When all I want to do is move and fidget with my own ideas that are no where near as good as what God has for me. God’s will for my life is perfect for me. All I have to do is be patient and hold on to faith.

Yeah, easier said than done.

James 1:2-4 (NRSV)
2 My brothers and sisters,[a] whenever you face trials of any kind, consider it nothing but joy, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith produces endurance; 4 and let endurance have its full effect, so that you may be mature and complete, lacking in nothing.

Less Church More Jesus

I have been a church slacker this Summer. I have been in Sunday services about half of the time. The strangest thing is I feel closer to God than I have in a long time. My prayer life is solid and I can feel the Spirit moving in my life, in my family’s life. I went to church this week and realized that God was calling me home. I felt a great peace sitting on the pew. It wasn’t a special service. It was a normal every Sunday regular service but I was home. What is more, my daughter, 700 plus miles away in a different state, went back to her home church and had the same experience. Nothing special happen and her church either, she was welcomed home with peace. I could over analyze the experience we both had. I could grab theology all over the place to explain it, the prodigal son comes to mind, but I choose to accept it as God pulling us back to Him.  It was time that we returned to Him for the next move. He has plans for our family and He knows we will need His strength. I know it too. I hear the whisper of the Holy Spirit in the wind, soon it will be time for action, but for now we are to rest in the shadow of His wings.

Sometimes it is not religion or church that you need but the presence of God to ground you and your life. Whatever is in our future I know that if I count on Jesus to be there, to be our fortress and our courage, we will get through it.

 

With Me

Holy Spirit, Come in this place and fill every corner every space. Hear my prayer, my cry my soul’s one desire. To be near you…to be filled with you…to experience your glory.

This is my cry in the dark and in the depths of my heart. I am broken and you are the only fix for me. You are beautiful and complete…..oh, how I love you Lord and want to be engulfed in your peace.

I was lost but you found me. You didn’t have to look for me but you did. You found me. By grace, your amazing grace I am found….I am no longer a crying lost soul.

Life is bright and full of love and….joy. Without you I was nothing, now I am everything with you.

I know you are here with me as I walk…as I live….as I work my way through this insignificant life trying to do significant things to share your love, you are with me. I sing and praise you all the day long. I am at your feet…living in the shadow of you.

I live in the reassurance that I know I can not be separated from you. I am yours in a way that I can’t explain.

All I want is you, Lord, with me. Always.

Amen

 

 

 

 

Pentecost and the Holy Spirit

I know the passage below is more that I usually post at one time of the Bible. I usually stick to a verse or two,  but it seemed that if I did not give the whole passage to you as a reference my next words would seem out of context.

Acts 2:1-13 (CEV)

2 On the day of Pentecost all the Lord’s followers were together in one place. 2 Suddenly there was a noise from heaven like the sound of a mighty wind! It filled the house where they were meeting. 3 Then they saw what looked like fiery tongues moving in all directions, and a tongue came and settled on each person there. 4 The Holy Spirit took control of everyone, and they began speaking whatever languages the Spirit let them speak.

5 Many religious Jews from every country in the world were living in Jerusalem. 6 And when they heard this noise, a crowd gathered. But they were surprised, because they were hearing everything in their own languages. 7 They were excited and amazed, and said:

Don’t all these who are speaking come from Galilee? 8 Then why do we hear them speaking our very own languages? 9 Some of us are from Parthia, Media, and Elam. Others are from Mesopotamia, Judea, Cappadocia, Pontus, Asia, 10 Phrygia, Pamphylia, Egypt, parts of Libya near Cyrene, Rome, 11 Crete, and Arabia. Some of us were born Jews, and others of us have chosen to be Jews. Yet we all hear them using our own languages to tell the wonderful things God has done.

This is the exact moment when the first Christians were filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke in tongues. Notice that there is no account of any of them speaking some gibberish confusing language.Notice that someone there can understand them. There is no talk of a spiritual language, they are all speaking some sort of language that men have spoken before.  Notice also in the passage above no one fell out slain on the floor. There is no flopping around.

I avoid churches today that say that their members have the gift of speaking in tongues. I know that the gift still exists. I am not doubting that the Holy spirit who descended in Acts could still descend today. I am certain that same Holy spirit does not cause confusion and that someone will always know what the person speaking in the foreign language  is saying. Be Careful friends what you allow your heart to be exposed too. Make sure that you use the good sense that God gave you and examine what you see. If the Holy Spirit is in you and you trust Him, you will know if what you are seeing is real or not. The Holy Spirit will reveal Himself to you and He will also reveal frauds.

I truly believe that when the Holy speaks to you or me we know it as fact. We hear Him, we senses His presence in a very real way. There is no confusion as to if it is our emotional response or if He is really there. God’s presence through the Holy Spirit is enough to send us to our knees. It will cause tears to flow because our sin and unworthiness will also be revealed. Bottom line, we will know the truth. The Holy Spirit reveals truth.