The Father Comforts … all by Himself

One recent Sunday I so badly wanted someone to know the hardness of what I was talking to God about; the topic will remain unnamed, but I just wanted people to know.

I’m sitting there.   More

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My Feet Hit the Floor All Tingly

Let’s be authentic, okay?  I’ve been battling getting up early this week to meet with Jesus.  It’s not that I don’t want to, because I do, but man, sleep, life worries, laziness, work worries, house duties … it all seemed to get in the way this week.  Yesterday I had a good lunch hour and spent it journaling; I was talking to God about my desires for Him and how I planned to get up early the next day to meet with Him.  Because He’s worth it.  He’s worth waking up early.  He’s worth putting housework off.  He’s worth pushing worries aside to concentrate on Him and my relationship with Him.  Why? Because He controls and sustains all that anyhow.  I’m not in charge of it, He is.  And if I come to Him and surrender it all to Him from the start of my day, it allows me to remember — all day long — that He is in control and will take care of my heart through it all.

I woke up 3 minutes before my alarm today.  That never happens! But it was sweet.  I thought about going back to sleep for 3 minutes, but who was I kidding … I’d never get back up!  So my feet hit the floor, all tingly.  And this song popped into my head: Come Ye Sinners by the Robbie Seay Band.  Listen to it.  Give it it’s 4 minutes and enjoy.  Allow your heart to come to Jesus as you listen.  Receive and be reminded of the truths in this song.  Enjoy Him right now and every moment of today.  I’m in it with you!

Come Ye Sinners Robbie Seay Band

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It’s Sunday – Are You Praying For Your Pastor?

photo-2I hate to admit this … it’s very humbling in fact.  And even takes courage on my part to ‘put it out there’.  I was raised in a church that did a GREAT job of teaching me that daily time with Jesus (a ‘quiet time’ as we called it) was vitally important to a growing spiritual life.  I’m so glad I was taught that because it is true.  Sometimes you want to read scripture and pray, sometimes you don’t, but none the less … doing it daily is vital if you want to have a growing relationship with God.  Since I did my best to do that every day of the week, I somehow told myself that Sundays were ‘break’ days.  Since I was about to get up and go to church, I didn’t need to have a quiet time that morning.  No one ever told me to believe that or do that, somehow, I just thought it was okay to skip my quiet time on Sundays because I was going to church that day.

 

THAT IS SOOOOOO NOT TRUE!  Listen to this …  More

I Burnt The Resurrection Rolls

Seriously.  I burnt them.  See …

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The tops don’t look so bad.  But you’ve used those prepackaged crescent rolls before, right? You know how GREAT they are when they are lightly browned? Where they are fluffy and just cooked all the way through? These were hard and flaky.  Check out the bottoms …

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YUCK! I bit into one and threw it away.  My sweet kids?  These guys?

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They ate them right up!!! They didn’t even care.  Isn’t that sweet 🙂

My hope in Jesus dying on the cross to make a way for me to have a relationship with God the Father is so deep and hits on so many levels, but it also hits on the basic level of this:

I can’t even make resurrection rolls correctly and I need His help to just make breakfast every day!!! Praise Jesus for the hope He gives us!!!

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart
And do not lean on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge Him,
And He will make your paths straight.”

Proverbs 3:5-6

You can find the recipe for ‘Resurrection Rolls’  like I did, by googling it.  🙂 

Palm Sunday

Palm Sunday.  That’s what today is.  In one week from today we celebrate Easter and the resurrected Christ.  Today, however, we hone in on a journey Christ took that has a bit of a heavy tone to it.  He knew what this next week of His life had in store.  We know what this next week of His life had in store.  Not many other humans on earth did at the time.  Maybe no one else.  Here is where it is found in scripture:

Matthew 21:1-11

21 When they had approached Jerusalem and had come to Bethphage, at the Mount of Olives, then Jesus sent two disciples, saying to them, “Go into the village opposite you, and immediately you will find a donkey tied there and a colt with her; untie them and bring them to Me. If anyone says anything to you, you shall say, ‘The Lord has need of them,’ and immediately he will send them.” This took place to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet:

Say to the daughter of Zion,
Behold your King is coming to you,
Gentle, and mounted on a donkey,
Even on a colt, the foal of a beast of burden.’”

The disciples went and did just as Jesus had instructed them, and brought the donkey and the colt, and laid their coats on them; and He sat on the coats. Most of the crowd spread their coats in the road, and others were cutting branches from the trees and spreading them in the road. The crowds going ahead of Him, and those who followed, were shouting,

“Hosanna to the Son of David;
Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord;
Hosanna in the highest!”

10 When He had entered Jerusalem, all the city was stirred, saying, “Who is this?” 11 And the crowds were saying, “This is the prophet Jesus, from Nazareth in Galilee.”

‘Hosanna’ is a term used to express adoration, praise or joy.

‘Son of David’ – There is a prophecy in 2 Samuel 7 that tells of a Messiah coming.  Christ is the fulfillment of that prophecy and is our Messiah. You can see geological proof of that in Matthew 1.

‘Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord’ is a direct quote from Psalm 118:26.  He is worthy to be blessed and praised because He came to take away the sins of the world. And in scripture, where we meditate today, He was on His journey to do just that.  His journey to the Cross was less than a week away.  This triumphant entry was the beginning of that journey.  He was headed into Jerusalem, where He knew He would eventually be captured, scourged and put to death on a cross for us.

Why? Just so we can know Him and be in relationship with Him.  Jesus had to take our sin away so we could be put back into a right relationship with God.  Jesus did that for us.

Today, and all this week, let’s remember that.  Let’s think on that and rest in that.  What does it mean to you that Jesus endured all that He did for you? You are that important to Him.

No Fasting on Sundays

photo-2Did you know it is a part of the Lenten tradition to NOT fast on Sundays?  I had no idea!  The reason?  We treat every Sunday like a Mini-Easter.  We celebrate His resurrection.  So how do we have a Mini-Easter celebration every Sunday?  I have a few suggestions …  More

Showing love in February

photo-2This month we’re focusing on ways to show love.  Yesterday, on February 1st we posted our first blog about it … showing love through blueberry muffins.  Showing love is something that is not that hard to do, but does take just a little thought and effort; a little bit of time thinking about someone else and what they love.  Scripture is pretty specific about this topic.

2″Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; 4 do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others. 5 Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus,”

Philippians 2:3-5a

Nothing.  I am to do nothing from selfishness.  Well, that’s just not going to happen.  And that’s why I need the grace of God so badly.  Jesus is our mediator.  He knows we can’t live up to that standard.  Not living up to that standard shows us our need for a Savior.  There’s no way we can reconcile the brokenness we have with God because of our sin.  So Jesus made the way for us to be brought back to God and to be reconciled in that relationship with Him.  Scripture is pretty clear about that, too.

For Christ also died for sins once for all, the just (God) for the unjust (us), so that He (Jesus) might bring us to God,”
1 Peter 3:18a (emphasis & parenthesis added)

How amazing.  Jesus is the one that bridges that gap between us and God so that we might have a personal relationship with Him.  Okay, okay, I get it, Holly, but WHY are you going off on this tangent when all I want to do is read about how to ‘show love’ to those around me.  Well, going off on this tangent is SUPER important because God is the author and creator of love.  And scripture says that ‘we only love because He first loved us‘.  We can’t know true love or even show or give true love unless we know Him first.  Knowing God in a personal and intimate way is the BEST way to show love.

Do you know Jesus?  Do you have a personal relationship with Him?  Have you acknowledged your need for His redeeming work on the cross? I did that for the first time when I was 10.  Will you do that for the first time right now?  Accept God’s love for you and enjoy a whole new perspective on love this month of February.

It’s A 3 Day Weekend!!!

And you know what? I couldn’t be more excited.  For a few reasons …

1. I’ve been struggling with Cedar Fever … more on that later … and I can’t wait to just rest. and enjoy.

2. I get to rest and enjoy!  yay!

3. I get to be with my family!  yay!! These guys can be super fun!

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So what are you going to do with your day?  We’ll do a bit of everything.  Some normal stuff: cleaning up, laundry, intersecting fights and bickering with {what we always hope is} gospel-filled, truth centered conversation.  That’s the hope at least.  And we’ll do some fun weekend stuff … watch some football, play games, watch a movie, go to a UT swim meet.  And we’ll rest up, of course.

Although I’m feeling better this morning {God has graciously provided relief from Cedar Fever with a careful concoction of Allergy-D Meds, water and lots of kleenex}, I’m still going to avoid time outside like the plague.  Indoor fun is what I’m clinging to on this longer weekend.

So join me,will you, in being intentional about bringing love and enjoyment into your weekend … be it a 1, 2, or 3 day one. 🙂

What Do You Do In The Morning?

Besides just trying to wake up and get out of bed, there are things I’m trying to do in the morning. One of those things is to focus my heart. It’s not that something weird happens when I sleep and I go all crazy, but that I just need re-focusing, on what matters, daily. So, what is it that matters? Let me tell you…

1. My heart and where it’s at with God. I need to read truth–scripture–to train my mind to believe all things true and think like that instead of thinking all the other crazy thinks my mind tends towards!!!

Honestly, that’s the only thing I really try to make sure happens. All other patterns of thinking stem from that and all other necessities {or perceived ones, like coffee:) } will happen automatically.

What are you trying to get done in the morning? Are you trying to refocus your heart on what’s important? How do you do that?

Balance-Speaking The Gospel To Yourself Daily

2013-11-21 10.21.49Balance. I laugh in the face of balance. And then I kind of start to whimper, and then I kind of start to cry, because I realize… well at least this morning… I feel like I have no balance. Not the kind of balance where it’s like “whoa, I’m going to fall”, but the kind of balance to wear everything in your house and your home and with your life is working in good order and all is okay. Did not feel like that this morning.

I’m on day three of the new job that, by the way, is a great and wonderful. But just the transition to something different like this is hard. I’m trying to get not only the kids to school on time but also have myself ready and walking out the door so that as soon as I drop them off I can go straight to work. That’s kind of hard.

So on the way to work, when I started to feel the tension rising, I tried to remind myself of the Gospel. I tried to speak truth into my own heart and my own mind to combat the lack of balance I was feeling. I reminded myself of God’s goodness and grace to always care for me in every situation I’m in. I reminded myself of Matthew 6, where Jesus is talking about the lilies of the field, and how God knows every detail of their life and their beauty. I was able to remind myself that He knows and feels the same for me. That He knows how I feel that He knows what I’m going through; that He ordained what I’m going through; that He is with me in this, and that He is for me in this.

In those moments, I was able to verbally reiterate, through prayer, my faith and trust in Him as my Lord and Savior & as the one to whom I commit my life too.

Guys, this is living out the gospel every day. This is speaking the gospel to yourself. This is speaking truth to yourself. This is what I have to do all the time all day long. It’s amazing how my heart and my mind wander so quickly and so easily and I’m not able to focus in on what matters all the time.

So I want to encourage you today, to do the same thing. What are you thinking? What are you doubting? What are you feeling? Are you talking to Jesus about those things? Are you looking in Scripture to find help for where you’re at? These are the things you’ve got to do on a daily regular basis to have our hearts right before him all the time.

Will you do this with me?

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