Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Lessons Learned in "Twenty Ten"

I've been rather reminiscent this Christmas Break. It has been very good, very healing, and very encouraging. I don't know if I am the only one who does this (I'm guessing I'm not alone), but I always take time to think back through my year. I journaled some of my thoughts:

This has been a good year, strange, but good. I've grown (mostly in the past 3 months). I've learned by my mistakes that God is SO good, gracious, and protecting.

I've learned that I am worthy of love and pursuit.

I've learned that my body is a temple/dwelling of God and I need to take better care - physically, emotionally, spiritually.

I've been reminded of the amazing friends that have been put in my life. I'm not sure I could have made it through some days without their love, concern, and prayers.

I've learned that I go through seasons in life. They are part of HIS plan and will grow me.

I've learned that it is IMPOSSIBLE to please everyone. No matter the intentions, someone will be upset.

I've learned that I am a strong woman. Heartache and pain have pushed me to seek out strength from the Lord. Strength. His strength can get me through the toughest of times.

I've learned that I really desire to be a wife and mom. It is not just a girlish dream. It is deep in my heart for HIS kingdom

I've learned that God is the only one I can trust 100% with my heart. Anyone else is a risk, but those risks must be taken.

I've learned that I am going to mess up, BIG TIME! But God can and will redeem me when I come to Him.

I've learned that I'm glad this isn't the end for me. I have a wonderful life, but it comes with pain. I'm anxious for the day when I am truly home...for eternity...with my Savior.

It truly has been a good year. I am looking forward to the next year. Where will God take me?

Saturday, December 25, 2010

How many times have you prayed "THE PRAYER"

It usually starts like this:

"If there is anyone here today that doesn't know Jesus, I want you to pray this simple prayer with me." -pastor

I will admit, I have prayed that prayer EVERY time I hear those words at the end of a message. I gave my heart to Jesus over 13 years ago! But I never fail to pray that prayer. And I always wonder WHY I feel the need to pray it. I know where I am with Jesus. I know that I have personal relationship. And I KNOW him. But I just can't stop myself.

Yesterday morning I was catching up on the sermon series "REBEL" from Grace Community Church. I was in tears the entire time. At the end of the message, during prayer, Pastor Jim said those words from the beginning of this post. I found myself sitting at my desk, tears falling to the desktop, arms wide open, praying that prayer. The prayer of salvation.

Why do we....maybe it's just me....but why do I do this? Is it uncertainty in my salvation? Is it support for those who are praying for the FIRST time? Is it so that those around me hear me?


I'll tell you why I do this.

Matthew 16:24 "Then Jesus said to his disciples, 'If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.'"

Luke 9:23 "Then he said to them all: 'If anyone would come after me, eh must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.'"

John 12:25-26 "'The man who loves his life will lose it, while the man who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life. Whoever serves me must follow me; and where I am, my servant also will be. My Father will honor the one who serves me.'"

We are called to DAILY surrender ourselves to God and HIS good, pleasing, and perfect will. THE PRAYER should be a daily prayer for believers; confessing our sin, acknowledging the need for Jesus to intercede in our lives, humbling ourselves before the Creator of all that is.

Pastor Jim's message made me look at things a little bit different, see things in a new way. Be blessed this day, the day of Jesus's birth. Not because a precious, cute baby was born but because the Savior of the world was delivered to earth. He was born and had a mission...a mission to live, minister, love, proclaim God, be an example, serve, die, and rise to live FOREVER.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

this morning

Here is my view this morning....

The snow is beginning to fall. I am catching up on, Facebook, blog reading, sermon watching, stuff. As I was reading my friend Marah's blog I came across this video. It was a good reminder for me.

I have struggled this year with the "stuff" of Christmas. For those of you who know me, that is not normal. I find pure joy in giving to others. I don't know if it is financial issues. I don't know if it is because of the season of life. I don't know if God is really trying to dig into my heart. I just want to spend time with people. That would make me happier than giving gifts. Time would make me happier than getting gifts. Time is what I want to give this year.

This video got me thinking about Christmas. What is it that I truly love about the Christmas season?

I love that Jesus is EVERYWHERE! Seriously, this is HIS birthday celebration.
I see so many of the people that don't live close by as they come home to be with family.
Christmas music!!!!
I spend loads of time with my family.
Being at home with my puppy (new for me this year).
Opening my home for friends to come over and visit. This truly makes my heart happy.
This year - SNOW!!!!!

None of that has to do with buying things. None of it has to do with getting stuff. Don't get me wrong, that is all good, but this time of year is SO MUCH MORE than all of that!

Jesus truly is the reason for this time. It is named after HIM, for HIM, in honor of HIM. We should be like HIM and give this season. We should be like HIM and rejoice in our Heavenly Father this season. We should be like HIM and consider those less fortunate.

Those are just my thoughts this morning as I sit and catch up on the stuff of my life. I am ever grateful for the life that I have. I am blessed by the snow that is falling. I am humbled that God sent his Son to earth over 2000 years ago so that I could be in this moment this morning, in awe of what I have because of what HE gave.