Saturday, September 17, 2011

"Charge it to my account."

"If he has wronged you at all, or owes you anything, charge that to my account." Philemon 1:18. Here, Paul is talking about his dear slave, Onesimus. What a powerful thought! How many times are we willing to say, "If so-and-so does anything to wrong you, charge it to my account." Yet, that is exactly what Christ has done for us. God sent his son, Jesus, to cover our wrongs so that we can be set free in Him! On the other hand, when someone else wrongs us, we should consider Christ who is the justifyer of the sin and love them as if they are debt free - with true love!

How often do we allow someone's wrongs against us, alter our relationship with that person?

Praise to the King of Kings, the one who justifies sin, the giver of freedom. Though we don't always understand how and why, there's no need to question it. As someone in authority can command a soldier to go, (check out Matt 8:5-13) so can the lamb of God remove sin from our debts. For all have sinned and fallen short of the Glory of God (Romans 3:23); we all have so much praise to give!

"Charge it to my account." Think of it like this: We own a pre-paid credit card, and Christ paid the debt! All we ever had to do was accept the radical free gift.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Seeds in Fertile soul

For so long I have been feeling transplanted or uprooted from the safety of my old life. I have been thankful for the changes, because it has caused me to cling closer to the Lord and have a better relationship with him. Yet I have struggled with a roller coaster of highs and lows. For instance, I have idolized my need to have close knit relationships with other girls, and God has shown me that it is HE who is the provider, the best friend, the all in all. Yet, like the death of a loved one, just when I think I have come out of the pit, there it is: a new thought and my friendship idol staring me in the face. Yet, it's always another area of sin that I am addressing, and then I am face down on my hands and knees praying again.
So often I feel like I am in the dark. Yet the Lord told me something today. He said, "you are not in the dark Chrissy. You are in rich, fertilized soul. Though you may not know where you are going in life right now, you are right where you need to be!! There is nourishment in there that is feeding you, growing you!! But while you are here, don't stop reaching towards the light! (The Lord) Keep persevering you eventually you will have a leaf that will pop out and you will surface. But there will always be roots in the dirt, because you are human and will always need to keep growing. Once you have surfaced, you will then be able to see where you came from!

Oh, thank you Lord!! It is so wonderful to know that even though times can be challenging, it is the LORD that is challenging me. I have known this all along but yet I struggled anyway. The Lord is sharing with me in a language that is near and dear to my heart that He is in control and that there will be fruit at the end of this!

The Lord says: You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. Jeremiah 29:13. He says when we seek him with ALL our heart. The definition of ALL is so much deeper than we realize! Yet, somehow the Lord knows what areas we are holding back on and pulls it out of us. He also says: Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with me. Revelation 3:20

Thank you Lord for your promise. It is wonderful that you are ALWAYS there, and that you are in control. Thank you for being that friend that I can count on, the security, the foundation of our lives.

Friday, March 25, 2011

What does "Love like Jesus" mean?

 “If you love those who love you, what benefit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them. And if you do good to those who do good to you, what benefit is that to you? For even sinners do the same. And if you lend to those from whom you expect to receive, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, to get back the same amount. But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return, and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, for he is kind to the ungrateful and the evil." Luke 6:27-35

Jesus was a friend to sinners. Though sinless in nature and perfect in love he still thought we were “worth” his time! To this day, He desires to know us, reaches out for us, and yearns for a relationship with us just like the groom for his bride.

I wonder, how often do WE love, really love, those who don’t measure up to us? Those who maybe don’t impress us? How much do we open our arms to the newcomer, or refrain from judgment to the kid who is “different” in order to exercise God’s love? How many are hurting on account of our own sin?

Christ loved us and even put his own life on the line in order to save us. Not everyone understands or receives that love. Yet, it's there... for EVERYONE.

He calls us to love others like He loves us. "A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another." John 13:34-35 (ESV).  Is our goal to please other people, or to truly love God and live the way He asked us to?

How do we "know" that we are loving others, the way that He loved us? The simple answer is, "we are not." But, that doesn't mean that he hasn't commanded us to become more like Him. He judges us by our heart action, not reaction. Who have you loved on today?

"I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ." (Ephesians 3:17-19 NIV).

I see the king of glory
Coming on the clouds with fire
The whole earth shakes
The whole earth shakes


I see his love and mercy
Washing over all our sin
The people sing
The people sing

Hosanna in the highest [x2]

I see a generation
Rising up to take their place
With selfless faith
With selfless faith

I see a near revival
Stirring as we pray and seek
We're on our knees
We're on our knees!


Heal my heart and make it clean
Open up my eyes to the things unseen
Show me how to love like you have loved me

Break my heart from what breaks yours
Everything I am for your kingdoms cause
As I go from nothing to

[Chorus x2]

Hosanna in the highest

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Caught up in Quick Sand

Woman! We can be so complicated. My thoughts wonder way farther from reality than they should at times! (Ok, a lot of times.)  Sometimes it can be a really good thing. I get projects done, I get a great idea and go with it.  But, I’m distracted by stress.  My thoughts have been so intense that I find myself stuck in a daydream of complaints - focused on the worry much more than the blessings in life. Worry has me downwardly spiraled into a rut. But it's much deeper than a rut; it's wet, distressed quick sand that I've been caught up in. Wikipedia describes quick sand as a non-Newtonian fluid: when undisturbed, it often appears to be solid, but a minor (less than 1%) change in the stress on the quicksand will cause a sudden decrease in its viscosity. Okay, what?!! In other words, quick sand in it of itself appears to be fine until you disturb it. My thought life was fine until I came across a few puddles of stress (or quick sand) and continued worrying and putting stress on it until I found it hard to get out.

It's been tough for me to "snap out of it" and stop focusing on the fact that I feel so stuck. Don't get me wrong, we have good reasons! Gossip, financial problems, unsettling constant changes. I know that all I have to do is realize that by letting go of the need to be in control of it I can easily swim out, but instead I feel my heart flutter and act as though my only choice is to bogged down by the stress of life.  

In reality, my trusted Wikipedia friend says that "it would be impossible for a human or animal to completely sink in the quicksand" and I find it funny because TRUTHFULLY, it's impossible for us woman to get completely sunk in our levels of worry too. Come on, you know what I’m talking about, right?? And sure, some do lose their minds. But, usually our problems are our minds playing tricks on us – we get too caught up in the problem rather than focusing on blessings and allowing grace to set us free.  That's completely unnatural. The natural instinct is to freak out and push harder against the currents of life. But sometimes you just have to go with the flow and keep your head above the water - and you will make it safely to shore. What I'm trying to say is, simply, we get stuck when we focus too much on the problem, rather than swim out of the situation by placing our faith in God.

"Dear Lord, I'm sorry for focusing on what I need and the worries of today rather than trusting that you are in control and knowing that everything is for your glory anyway. Lord, help me to give you credit for your glory! Help me to see you in everything because it is YOU that is truly beautiful. Strength is not found in taking control over situations in life, and security is not found in stability. It is you that stabilizes, and you that gives strength. Thank you for being my source of salvation - and I thank you in advance for your peace."

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Becoming un-Beached

Blessings, friends!

This morning I found out that Sean did not have to be into work until noon time, so in my excitement we planned a morning run at Indian Rocks Beach. It was an overcast morning and the weather was perfect for a jog. (Now, if only I was in shape again haha)

Well, while we were there, we passed a large fish carcass that must have been beached over night. It was rotten and well enjoyed. The fin scales were visible and most of the bones were poking through. Kind of super fascinating if you ask me!!

Later this afternoon, I decided it would be a good idea to read ahead in the Bible study book. The page that I worked on cross referenced Jonah 4:4 "But the LORD replied, "Have you any right to be angry?"" I couldn't remember what Jonah was angry about so I read the entire book again (all of 4 chapters lol). The book of Jonah intrigued me in ways that it never had in the past. The famous part was when he was swallowed by a whale, and vomited back out after his change of heart to be obedient to God. (Which, by the way, I have read stories that there are "modern" day events of surviving humans who have been swallowed by large fish and vomited up a few days later. Google it.)

Then at night, our friend decided to cook us fish and chips. (It was scrumptious)

There seemed to be a fishy theme for the day. I asked myself, "What could God be telling me?" and no sooner did I start to share my thoughts out loud, did I get a pretty good idea of what God is showing me, at this moment in my life.

Well about 2 years ago I had a dream about Jonah and then about 7 months ago we moved to Florida. While we have been here, we have had one financial struggle after another. In short, God has had different plans for us than our own. But I've been so stressed and focused on the loss of security that I've been come angry without knowing it. There it is, a root of anger, hidden inside of me and causing damage without me even being aware of it. I've only been aware of the symptoms.

The Lord is showing me that security comes from the Lord, even when there is trouble all around. Like someone mentioned at Bible study, money did not appear to be an idol to me, until the security I had from it was gone. It's amazing how God can teach us to grow near to Him. He is shaking everything that we find secure. Hubby is too busy to be home at dinner, we are on the opposite end of the east coast from where we lived, and life is completely new. But, even though things are shook up, there is one hiding place and that is of the Lord our God! Our heavenly father: the one who brings peace.

"Dear Lord, sometimes I get stressed out over situations and try to maintain control over them. In reality, you are the one who is in control. Once again, I give you my heart, and I give you my life. Thank you for being our Jehovah Jireh, and for your grace. "