Unequaled power quells from a broken heart. Some hurts cause us to close up or hide …. but, a heart that is broken stays open. It can be a blessing beyond compare, BeautifulOne.
‘The blind see,
The lame walk,
Lepers are cleansed,
The deaf hear,
The dead are raised,
The wretched of the earth learn that God is on their side.
“Is this what you were expecting? Then count yourselves most blessed!” (Matthew 11:4-6 MSG)
Brokenness not only allows us to see others, it allows you and I to constantly see the very essence of our Creator. God Almighty does not appear so much in quiet, ritualistic, ceremonial places as He does in
and severe storms,
He arrives in a cloud of dust, in places where others know to be most cautious. He comes skidding in sideways to a sudden stop and stands among broken shards of glass. He appears in a myriad of ways not only in moments of peaceful presence, but greater still when there is higher need for
Good morning, DearHeart. Growing up in a small southern baptist church (back when it was expected to hear words like hell, and damnation, rapture, end times, and satan, from the pulpit), meant that the thought of eternity was placed at the forefront of our awareness. Somehow, life happened and those thoughts got dimmed by the urgency of the daily tasks. But, now, I see the struggles of these days, the struggles of my friends and my loves – and I see the active work of satan chomping into them and causing chaos. What do people do who don’t know Christ? Who don’t have hope? Who don’t have the perspective to know that the enemy works through people to destroy others? What do people do when they don’t understand the hits that we take while walking these earth-roads are only temporary? What do people do who don’t know Christ? And, that eternity is coming? All around, we see the work of the evil one being unleashed upon the world during these end times. Some, actually many, will be deceived by satan and his activities because they have refused to love and accept God’s truth. Our God is not willing for any to perish (2 Peter 3:9) which is why the Holy Spirit works on EVERY heart, pursuing each one. He is chasing them down like a parent going after a toddler heading into danger. As I read these scripture this morning, my heart was stirred to pray for the softening of hearts. Let those around us see Jesus in us and be moved to seek Him and His truth. “Brothers and sisters, we have something to say about the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. We want to talk to you about that time when we will meet together with Him. Don’t let yourselves be easily upset or worried if you hear that the day of the Lord has already come. Someone might say that this idea came from us—in something the Spirit told us, or in something we said, or in a letter we wrote. Don’t be fooled by anything they might say. That day of the Lord will not come until the turning away from God happens. And that day will not come until the Man of Evil appears, the one who belongs to hell. He will stand against and put himself above everything that people worship or think is worthy of worship. He will even go into God’s Temple and sit there, claiming that he is God. I told you before that all these things would happen. Remember? And you know what is stopping that Man of Evil now. He is being stopped now so that he will appear at the right time. The secret power of evil is already working in the world now. But there is One who is stopping that secret power of evil. And He will continue to stop it until he is taken out of the way. Then that Man of Evil will appear. But the Lord Jesus will kill him with the breath that comes from His mouth. The Lord will come in a way that everyone will see, and that will be the end of the Man of Evil.” 2 Thessalonians 2:1-8 ERV Wake up. Be moved to pray. Soften hearts, Lord. Let them be moved. Go.
The sky this morn is kinda purple-ish and coral. So beautiful . And the birds are having some kind of symphony, but somebody forgot to tell that one mockingbird that he’s not the lead singer. 🤷🏼♀️ Good morning, DearHeart. I’m sitting out here thinking of joy vs anger, or criticism, or blah – nothing – no reaction – rude. It doesn’t take long to know when you are in the presence of either. Have you noticed, when you let joy out your front door it’s not ever going to get you in trouble? The trouble comes when we hold it back … the trouble begins when we choose to be joyous with this person, but not with that one … because, that is a point we’ve chosen to limit the power of the Holy Spirit flowing out. It’s like choosing to pull a blanket of clouds over the flood of sunshine He has given us to share. ‘For I have great joy and encouragement from your love, because the hearts of the saints have been refreshed through you, brother.’ (Philemon 1:7 HCSB) There are people who breathe life into you – be that person to others. When we start grabbing for cloud cover – it’s time to back up and do some work on ourselves. Wake up. Hit your knees. Do the deep work. The Light of our joy was meant for everyone. No matter what. Be limitless with His joy. Go.
Good morning, DearHeart. If there I one thing this year/COVID-19 has taught us, it is not to take anyone or anything for granted. The virus keeps hitting closer to home – people and families we know and love, fighting for life. It’s so bizarre. Crisis after crisis – compounding. It reminds me how precious our time is. Each hour I face choices which will either bring growth to my life or death. I can either grow as a person in and through Him, becoming more like Him, fulfilling His plan. Or I am not and my life is producing nothing of His purposes. We don’t have to do this alone. -God has given us His Word to guide us in life. “This command I am giving you today is not too difficult for you to understand, and it is not beyond your reach.” (Deuteronomy 30:11, NLT) He brings understanding as His desire is for us to fulfill His plan for our lives. -We are to obey His Word. “No, the message is close at hand. It is on your lips and in your heart so that you can obey it.” (verse 14). He has not only given us His Word, He teaches us and gives us the ability to learn how to live in His ways. -The choice is ours. “You can make this choice by loving the Lord your God, obeying him, and committing yourself firmly to him.” (verse 20). This choice is totally ours to make. Did you notice the word – “firmly”? We are to securely attach ourselves to Him. We are -to be settled on Him, -no wiggle room, -not shaking. -We are to be unwavering. That one word, tucked there in the middle has the utmost importance, as we are told … “This is the key to your life.” And the choice is ours. Wake up. Attach to Him firmly. Go.
Good morning, DearHeart. So many decisions lately in the midst of so many unknowns. The next right thing is so often just going with your gut instinct and deal with the outcomes as they fall. You know, I struggle equally as much when those I love are in the midst of making decisions. Sometimes I wonder if I take the process way too seriously. In the midst of my current inner struggle, I have learned a few things: -There is a plan and He does direct our steps. There is comfort in this for as each of us rely on Him and seek His plan, He will reveal and bring direction to each one of us. “The mind of man plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps.” (Proverbs 16:9) -Mental confusion will occur in decision making days. We can rest assured, He is with us right in the midst of those days. “I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you and watch over you.” (Psalm 32:8) He brings clarity of thought. -He receives our cares & concerns. We’re never left to hold the load on our own. Perhaps He created us unable to hold it ourselves so we would be dependent on Him alone. -While we will never be trouble-free, our lives will have meaning. “There are many plans in a man’s heart, nevertheless the Lord’s counsel – that will stand.” (Proverbs 19:21) “But the Lord’s plans stand firm forever; his intentions can never be shaken.” (Psalm 33:11, NLT) Intentions-“purpose or attitude toward the effect of one’s actions or conduct“. Synonyms include … “objective, purpose, motive and struggle.” … and, struggle. I don’t think it is coincidental that the intentions of the Lord do not come minus a struggle. Perhaps the struggle is great because His plans are greater still. The enemy would do anything to get us off course from the intentions God has for each of our lives. This morning my soul finds peace knowing that as we seek Him, a plan for each of our lives will be fulfilled. He is intentional towards each of us and will not be shaken from His intents. He positions us where our gifts will be used to bless and grow others in Him. “The Lord will work out his plans for my life – for your faithful love, O Lord, endures forever. Don’t abandon me, for you made me.” (Psalm 138:8, NLT) Wake up. Whatever decision you make, it will be the right one. Go.
All three of my sons have gone through desert places. We all have. But, from a mom’s perspective, the urge is to fix it. And, we can’t. It is their journey … their wrestling match with God in a God-place, in God’s time. I haven’t raised girls, but have witnessed first hand – males have a super-strong need to be in control of their lives and have a plan that allows them to be a ‘provider’. It is innate. Part of their DNA. I know the desert is coming for our Baby Rush, our next generation, too. I can’t stop it. I won’t be able to fix it for him either – he will have to live it himself.
I know this happens to you, too. Something familiar – a familiar story – somehow takes a different direction … especially in life storms – in the midst of a storm, Paul encourages in Acts 27. In a snapshot – he speaks words which infuse courage and calms anxiety. He breaks bread and feeds the sailors or fishermen or whoever they were – for their own good. He prays, thanking God for Who He is. Smashed boat and all, not one life was lost. All 276 were spared. I’ve read this story so many times …
but, there are times, God has more to say and He diverts our eyes to take in a few words differently ….
“Once we were safe on shore, we learned that we were on the island of Malta.” (Acts 28: 1, NLT)
Those very words seemed to leap off the page. Or perhaps God was using His megaphone. Not sure. But I know His Word sank deep into my soul as it brought new revelation to me – – –
Sometimes we have no idea where we’re going until we land safe at shore.
When life throws its uncertainties at us, we want to know the outcome. We even desire to control the outcome. As the waves pound and the winds howl, we want to know the direction we are headed.
But sometimes, we need to trust Him and go for the ride, knowing He will take us safely into shore.
And here’s the thing about the shore ….
“The people of the island were very kind to us. It was cold and rainy, so they built a fire on the shore to welcome us.” (Acts 28: 2, NLT)
The place we land will be a place which welcomes us. There will be a fire waiting to warm us, bringing the comfort of safety and community and family.
Sometimes we have no idea where we’re going until we land safe at shore.
My brother, Russ, is a big fan of habits … of making good things routine to the point that they become muscle memory. Then- the brain and body don’t have to think about it, the good thing is attached, and like breathing and blinking, and the rooster crowing every morning, it just happens. Bad habits and good habits alike become attached.
“It is obvious what kind of life develops out of trying to get your own way all the time: repetitive, loveless, cheap sex; a stinking accumulation of mental and emotional garbage; frenzied and joyless grabs for happiness; trinket gods; magic-show religion; paranoid loneliness; cutthroat competition; all-consuming-yet-never-satisfied wants; a brutal temper; an impotence to love or be loved; divided homes and divided lives; small-minded and lopsided pursuits; the vicious habit of depersonalizing everyone into a rival; uncontrolled and uncontrollable addictions; ugly parodies of community. I could go on. This isn’t the first time I have warned you, you know. If you use your freedom this way, you will not inherit God’s kingdom.
But what happens when we live God’s way? He brings gifts into our lives, much the same way that fruit appears in an orchard—things like affection for others, exuberance about life, serenity. We develop a willingness to stick with things, a sense of compassion in the heart, and a conviction that a basic holiness permeates things and people. We find ourselves involved in loyal commitments, not needing to force our way in life, able to marshal and direct our energies wisely. But what happens when we live God’s way? He brings gifts into our lives, much the same way that fruit appears in an orchard—things like affection for others, exuberance about life, serenity. We develop a willingness to stick with things, a sense of compassion in the heart, and a conviction that a basic holiness permeates things and people. We find ourselves involved in loyal commitments, not needing to force our way in life, able to marshal and direct our energies wisely. Legalism is helpless in bringing this about; it only gets in the way. Among those who belong to Christ, everything connected with getting our own way and mindlessly responding to what everyone else calls necessities is killed off for good—crucified.”
Galatians 5:19-24 MSG
So, thinking a lot about attachment. For me, I get attached to specific things because of the heart-clench that happened when I made them, or received them, or met them – maybe there’s an underlying fear that that thrill – that knowing – won’t happen again. But that fear is based on the false assumption that I’m actually in charge of the making. I’m not. . Yes, there’s a level of acknowledgement required. Yes, this specific blend of reaching out can’t happen without me.
BUT, mostly, it’s a side- benefit of knowing the mystery of the Almighty. Intuitive, spontaneous, unrepeatable. I’m responsible for showing up (in that I need to be present for it to happen), but I don’t control it. The basic pep talk goes like this: show up, let the Holy move through you, then move on – there’s soooooo much more of God’s plan for you where that came from. . . He’s got every second covered.
“Make Your ways known to me, Lord; teach me Your paths. Guide me in Your truth and teach me, for You are the God of my salvation; I wait for You all day long.” Psalms 25:4-5 HCSB Good morning, DearHeart. My granddaughter, Liv, believes everything should be celebrated with cupcakes and candles. My prayer is that she never loses that spirit – that through life, every change – even the hardest changes – she can find a reason to celebrate the ‘new’ coming her way. Not knowing is okay, DearOne. We get a soul-summons. We want to follow the call, even when we’ve no idea -where to go, or how to get there, or even what we might need for the journey. But, if you have been led to this place by the Holy Spirit, He will rock you through, even when you feel you are: stumbling around, alone in the dark, unable to get your footing, unable to control your emotions, – oh, you are far from alone, Precious Soul. Some things crumble over time – some things weather the storm and get stronger and sweeter through the process. How do you tell if this track is Spirit-led? If the place and players are still increasingly sacred to you, then, let go of the enemy that is holding you back, the plans, the strategy, the bitterness, the coffee routine, the eye-liner, the habits, the same ole routine. Push them to the edge of the cliff, and then shove them over. Make room for the love of the Holy. Let Him move in, dwell. Let Him guide. Trust Him. Trust His ways. You are fine. Keep breathing. Wake up.Allow the summons of the ‘new’. Go