Clanging cymbals

 

I Corinthians 13:1 “If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal.”

I have read this scripture many times over the years. But recently as a friend of mine was hurting in her anxiety and depression, and I was shouting out God’s goodness and how He pulled me through, I realized in a moment that I was not loving her. I was not meeting this friend where she was but trying to shout out how the Lord pulled me from the pit.  I wanted to see this same glorious victory in her life,  but there is a time when if all I am doing is shouting out joy, joy, joy… I can be a clanging cymbal.

It may not be comforting to a friend that is watching her life crumble around her, to hear,  ” I have been there, this is what you need to do!”
While I do believe in encouraging and edifying my sister and I do believe it is so important to sing the praises of my Jesus when He has shown me His joy,
There is a time and place for it.
Love is patient, kind, does not boast, not-self seeking. Am I being kind, patient and not self seeking when I want to hurry my friend through her burdens rather than walking by her side? I want her to be full of joy, but is that because I am uncomfortable with her hurting?

The word says there is a time and season for everything. There is a time to mourn but JOY comes in the morning. Am I rushing my friend to her morning, before God has completed the work in her? Am I a discouragement, when she is not seeing the joy that I am proclaiming and as she sits there while I am dancing about blind to her sorrow?

If I had been a clanging cymbal to you my friend in the past as I rejoice in my joy. I am sorry. I want you to have joy in abundance, and I want to share how I reached it, but in your time, when you are ready. God has begun a work in you, and He will complete it, in HIS time.

Lord grant me the wisdom to know when to be quiet and walk beside and when to SHOUT out your glorious JOY. For I don’t want to be a clanging harsh noise to the ears of those around me, but a song of praise stirring within the spirit of those hurting. Help me to know what is needed in the moment.

 

 

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Submerge

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1 Timothy 4:12-16

12 Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity. 13 Until I come, devote yourself to the public reading of Scripture, to preaching and to teaching. 14 Do not neglect your gift, which was given you through prophecy when the body of elders laid their hands on you.

15 Be diligent in these matters; give yourself wholly to them, so that everyone may see your progress. 16 Watch your life and doctrine closely. Persevere in them, because if you do, you will save both yourself and your hearers.

 

This was a painting the Lord gave me for a sweet girl at church. I had no idea what scripture I would be lead to this week for her until now. I just kept getting the word for her submerge.
One of the definitions of submerge: Completely cover, immerse.

While life throws all the mess at us. We are to fully cover ourselves in the Lord and immerse in His word. Keep our sight focused on Him and the truths He has revealed to our hearts. He has a gift working in this girl and she is to not neglect it, but to immerse herself in God’s presence and ask Him to reveal more.

While I have a million things running through my heart and my head but at this moment I am going to keep it simple. Sometimes less is more.
Blessings

 

A quiver full of blessings

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Our children are an inheritance of the Lord, a blessing and a joy.

Most days as my boys were growing up I knew this, however, there were those days I felt I was doing everything wrong and surely God made a mistake giving them to me. Maybe I should ship them to Bermuda.

There were days of stress, anger and shouting. Days of rebellion, tugging and shoving.

Then, it would all shine and be gloriously amazing and I would think we had passed the hurdle, only to see another up ahead.

I have friends that are in the midst of the highs and lows of parenting these days and my heart is to hopefully encourage. Those moments of frustrations and complete hair pulling stress will pass. Hold fast onto the word of the Lord that our children are our reward! I know in the midst of life, business and the drama you are exhausted beyond belief many days. More importantly the Lord knows this and as you cry out for strength He will grant it to you. I also know that there will be a day, when you look back and you say, thank you Lord, this was a great season and I am so thankful where you have brought us.

I truly wish that when my boys were in the midst of their craziness that I held my joy a little bit better, and a lot longer. I wish they saw less of a frazzled and anxious mom. I know that we are human and that we will make mistakes but now in the end of the game of raising the boys I see those things that once seemed so big and I was sure was going to ruin them, were in reality their growing.

Just like the big grown up adults we are, children need to discover the Lord and His tugging themselves. They need to feel the conviction of their wrongs and joys of obedience. The only way they will discover this for themselves is to live life. Making mistakes, following their flesh and acting in their human selves. What a joy to know that we get to help them along and learn how to listen to God’s voice early. I wish this dawned on me a lot sooner than it did. Maybe I would have enjoyed the journey in the midst of the junk a bit more.

Now as my boys are grown adults I hold fast to the word of the Lord. They are my reward. I am so blessed by the young men they have become. They are following their OWN paths in this life, I know I aimed for my mark and released each one into this world with the truth that they will impact the kingdom of God.  They are my quiver full of blessings. They are my joy.  Be encouraged my friend and count it all great joy, these children in your hands, are here for just a moment, then they will soar.

Psalm 127:3-5 

Behold, children are a gift of the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior, So are the children of one’s youth. How blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them; They will not be ashamed When they speak with their enemies in the gate

A New Day

Inspired! An amazing weekend in Dundee Oregon taking part in the Awaken the Dawn.
This is a prophetic painting and song that began and came forth this weekend. Spent time in the Lord tonight finishing it up. I am so thankful He has chosen to give me a NEW DAY.  I will sing it, shout it, paint it, and dance. My arms wide open to recieve the gift He has begun!

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I’ve seen your tears

I’ve heard your cries

I’ve felt your heartache

It’s time to dry those eyes

It’s a new day…. it’s a new day…a new day for you

I’ve seen your brokenness

I’ve heard your screams

I’ve felt your loneliness 

It’s time to let go and dream

It’s a new day… it’s a new day… a new day for you

No more bitterness

No more shame

No more hatred

No more pain

It’s a new day… it’s a new day… a new day for you

 

Don’t let the Dream Die

 

So many of us have dreams of succeeding by pursuing and exploring something born within us. For myself my dreams are to write my children’s books, to finish a work I have begun with friends and to open my own shop one day just to name a few.

My husband has shared his dreams with me over the years as well as my friends and family. The interesting thing about dreams, there is an ebb and flow to them while you wait for the fruition. There are times that your dream is on fire, burning within you and you take steps towards achieving your hearts desire. Then life happens, distractions may come, or in my case illness arises and then your dream goes dormant for a while. The embers are still burning but the dream is not being stoked and tended to for a season. If left for too long and forgotten the dream may even die.

However, the interesting thing with dreams the second you take time to acknowledge them, and get other things out-of-the-way, that fire ignites again and burns even brighter.

I find these seasons of dormancy give me a clearer picture of how to obtain the reality of my dream. I gain more direction, I reflect on what worked or did not work and I research more once the light is reignited. Sometimes when we have worked for our dreams and we don’t see the immediate results we will lay it down again. Rather than getting discouraged that I laid down those dreams, I am going to reflect on the fact that I am at this moment closer to obtaining my dream than I have ever have been in history. Why? Because I have learned much and today is a new day. I will not let go of what has been promised to me. I will WORK towards that goal. A dream that is part of our life plan should never be allowed to die completely. Take the time to reflect on those dreams that would spark such passion and excitement in you.  For once a dreamer always a dreamer you will be. You just have to begin again.

 

A scripture the Lord gave me years ago, regarding some dreams on my heart that had been left to die….
Jeremiah 33:3-  ‘Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.’

 

Will you return to your mess?

Proverbs 26:11
As a dog returns to its vomit, so fools repeat their folly.

A few weeks ago this scripture came to me so clearly at church.

Why is it that we can gain victory in an area of our lives, only to open up the door for the enemy all over again? Often times, it is harder to break away the second , third or eighth time, when that door has been opened.

For myself I find if I keep opening the door again and again, it is because the root of the sin has not been dealt with. I will stop sinning in my bitterness, anger, gluttony, worry or whatever it is for a season, but I have not completely rid myself of it. So it sits below the surface and fester, waiting for another onslaught to rear its ugly head. The temptation will rise and I will entertain it rather than cutting it off at the root.

It has been time to CUT off that sin. Walk away from it. Turn away and change. This is what repentance really means. To turn away from. I can’t keep picking the same old hurtful habits back up again and again and expect a different result.

I do not want to be as a dog returning to its nasty vomit. I do not want to be the fool returning to my folly that drags me down and steals my life and abundant joy.

My prayer today is the Lord makes every hidden thing abundantly clear to me so that I will not miss the areas that are lurking. That He will continue to give me strength to walk in HIM and not my own ways of self-destruction. I was created to be more than a fool.

Blessings

 

 

 

She listened and I learned

Today was a hard one. My father passed suddenly just a few weeks ago and this was my first Father’s Day without him. The last two years on Father’s Day I was lucky enough to travel the 2,000 miles to see him in Tennessee. I was planning a surprise trip this year and then he passed before  I could finalize details.

My heart just broke today. I would think this week that I was over the grieving and then it would hit fresh. While my inner joy will surface, the in the moment is rough.

At church today, singing some of the very songs that I had sung with my dad on my last visit. On that visit, I had the precious moment of holding him as we both cried because he was so sick and we were pleading with the Lord for his health. Our please and cries turned to praise and peace. Today the memory flooding me, it was all too much and I had to leave the building and get away from the songs.

Along came my sweet spirited sister in Jesus. Now normally I would have such an anxiety over showing myself so vulnerable, but she brought such a peace with her !

My friend sat with me and listened to me talk and cry. I shared so much I didn’t even think to share, simply because she listened. She had the sweetest spirit of comfort and assured me in the simplest of ways. She did not talk over me, as I likely would have done, but she waited and smiled. Oh her beautiful smile.

I learned so much from that exchange today. I learned by example to listen lovingly. I learned that a hug can bring the calm, instead of anxiety I often feel when crying. She just waited and I felt so connected to the here and now, and the grief just melted. We were laughing and sharing and I dusted my self off and we went back inside.

The message today….was on connecting with one another. A real connection. God had given me a perfect physical understanding before the message today and it was so sweet.

Thank you my friend, for stepping out, for teaching and loving. The fruit you share, will blossom and spread to others! You are a treasure!!!!