Friday, January 20, 2012

Perfect Peace

We hear the words from so many people that I want to have perfect peace in Christ but they have no understanding of what that really is. I have been thinking a lot lately about this concept. Is it really peace when life is going well, and you feel all is well in the world, you feel as though there is nothing that is going to shake you? Or, how in the world can you have peace when it feels as though life is falling apart and spinning out of control? A definition of peace is "cessation of or freedom from any strife or dissension." How can I have feeling of freedom? A few weeks ago I started to think about this concept when a verse that I have heard for years came to my attention.

Romans 5 1-2
Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ: By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.

This verse got me thinking, what is "true peace" ? While thinking through this, God brought me back to a few memories that I have of thunder storms. One of the memories is from when I was a child and other when I was an adult. I have always hated storms!! To this day I still hate storms. When I was a child though, I was terrified of storms especially at night. So, dad and mom told me that when a storm came I just needed to bring my blanket and pillow and lay on the floor next to there bed. So when a storm came I would gather my blanket and pillow and I would make my way up to their room. I was in the downstairs level of the house at times and it was a big house so getting up to where there room was a bit tricky. You see, I had to try to make it up to the room in between the thunder. So I would wait for it to thunder one last time and then I would make a run for it so that by the time the lightning was over I would be safe and sound next to my parents bed where I felt safe for the next loud thunder crack. But the funny thing to me is that I did not even have to wake them up to let them know that I was there. I just laid my blanket down and fell right back to sleep hoping that I would not get stepped on in the morning. I just felt safe next to them.

The second memory that I thought of was when we lived in a small town. It seems as though every time it rained we had a tornado close by. Well, one time the skies were black, the sirens were going off and thing were blowing all over outside. So I went to go find my family. Well, I found my husband where he love to be during a storm.....out on the porch watching the magnificence of the storm. So I stood there with him for what seemed like forever getting more and more scared at how the storm was looking. I finally said to him don't you think since the sirens are going off that we should go inside and get everyone downstairs. He said to me go ahead but I want to stay and watch. So I immediately found the kids and went downstairs to watch tv and try to make it appear that everything was just fine. To my amazement when I got downstairs and started to watch tv with the kids and spend time with them I had forgotten about the storm. I mean it was still out there but my fucus was not on the storm anymore it was on taking care of the kids trying to make sure they felt safe through the storm.

I think that these two memories illustrate these veres so well. The peace that we have in Christ is when we take our eyes off storm or circumstances whether good or bad and rest in Him; knowing that He is the one that is right by us. We don't have to tell Him we are scared, He knows. Our faith in knowing Him and building a relationship with Him is where the peace in God comes in. When we are truly focused on the hope that we have in Him no matter the circumstances we can rest in Him and feel the "peace of God that Passes all understanding." Philippians 4:7 KJVAnd the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Why do we think that life is something that fits into a box and everyone should live just as everyone else does? Why is it so easy to judge people when they are not fitting into what you in your mind thinks they should be doing? Why do we think that life has to just be "normal"? So When I ask these question I think the big question is what is being normal and who is it that God really wants us to be?
This question came to my mind when I was reading in my quiet time today in Hebrews 11. This as many people know it as the faith Chapter. It is where some amazing people are listed because of their incredible faith. There were two that really got my attention today.
The first is Noah. Starting in verse 7,"By faith Noah, being warned by God concerning events as yet unseen, in reverent fear constructed an ark for the saving of his household. By this he condemned the world and became an heir of the righteousness that comes by faith."(Hebrews 11:7 ESV) The part that got me was the phrase that said that he warned his family of the things that never happened before. Noah was not normal to people. Rain never happened before. People were looking at him like he was a crazy fool I am sure. Why would Noah do such a thing?
The second person that got my attention today was Abraham. Verses 8-10 "By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go out to a place that he was to receive as an inheritance. And he went out, not knowing where he was going. By faith he went to live in the land of promise, as in a foreign land, living in tents with Isaac and Jacob, heirs with him of the same promise. For he was looking forward to the city that has foundations, whose designer and builder is God." (Hebrews 11:8-10 ESV) think about what Abraham did. It was by faith that Abraham obeyed when God called him to leave home and go to another land that God would give him as his inheritance. He went without knowing where he was going. And even when he reached the land God promised him, he lived there by faith, he was like a foreigner, living in tents. And so did Isaac and Jacob, who inherited the same promise. Abraham was confidently looking forward to a city with eternal foundations, a city designed and built by God. He packed his family up and left to an unknown land. He did not know where He was going to go. He went only on Gods promises that were given to him and obeyed. HE WAS NOT NORMAL.
I have read these stories for years. I know them inside and out but this time reading them they just made me think. My faith has been tested more this year than ever before. It has not just been one area of life but many and some people would look at our life and say that is not normal but the question is what is normal? Was Noah or Abraham normal or even anyone else listed in the chapter. Maybe normal is just doing what God has commanded and being faithful to Him even though it is not not "normal looking to us."

Monday, August 30, 2010

New School Year!

So excited about the start of a new school year. Caitlyn said to me as she went to bed last night "good-bye summer". I thought about that a lot last night as I was getting ready for bed I remember waiting as a child for each new thing, waiting for the first day of school... waiting for the last day of school...waitning for Christmas....waiting for my birthday. All these exciting days that I looked forward to every year and now my kids are excited about. I wondered how eagerly are we waiting for the most important day. The day that we long for? The day that we will finally see our God face to face.
Last night the kids were getting there stuff ready so that when we get up in the morning we can have a great first day of school and I thought I wonder how many days this excitement is going to last. Probably just one day but it is still exciting to watch them be so excited about the newness of the new year. I know so many times that excitement of waiting for the most important days often fades away. I no longer get excited about birthdays (well at least not mine but I do for the kids) but I am so excited when God somehow reminds me of what I have to look forward to once again. I only hope that the next time I am excited about a day that will last for only a day I can also focus on the day that will not just be a day it will last forever. But for right now only 180 days till the last day of school:)

Thursday, May 20, 2010

A New Way of Thinking

Let me introduce you to my daughter. This Is Caitlyn. She is a wonderful daughter. She is a girl though, and with raising girls comes DRAMA. One minute you think that you know what she is thinking, and the next, well you get my drift. But, even with all that drama I can't even imagine what our family would be without her. She gives excitement and a new way of thinking. Let me give you and example of that new way of thinking that has just recently happened.

We were packing up the house getting ready for the move. Caitlyn was being such a huge help. Wrapping the glass things is what she loved to do the best while telling me how I was doing it wrong like any preteen does. Anyway, she said to me "I am kind of excited about wrapping up my globes." (her globe collection is her treasured posessions)

I of course said "why?" thinking to myself I am not feeling the same way. Dear, this is going to be a good one.

She proceeded to answer " because then when we get to where we are moving and I get to unwrap all of them it will seem like I am getting these presents all over again.

Chad by that time was in the room helping us and we just started to laugh. We said to her "WOW Caitlyn, that is a great way to think about it." I did not tell her that in my mind I was thinking I am not thinking that way at all. By this time I was thinking I can't believe I have to pack all this up, we don't even know where we are even going. I would love to say at that moment I was thinking "whatever God, you from us that is fine." Instead at that moment, I was thinking something that was not based on truth. Caitlyn made me stop and think what am I doing to think on truth. The verse that came to my mind was Phil 4:8-9 "Finally, bretheren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honorable, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue and if there be any praise think on these things."

I could not just stop there, I had to go back to the verses before those 2 verses that say..." Rejoice in the Lord always; again I say Rejoice. Let your forbearance be known to all men. The Lord is at hand. In nothing be anxios; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your reqest be make known unto God. And the peace of God which passed all understanding, shall gaurd hearts and your thought in Christ Jesus. Caitlyn made me realize that I was thinking a different way than these verses tell us to think in difficult situations. She was at that time rejoicing about something that was going to bring her joy.I am so thankful for my wonderful daughter and how God has given her a different way of thinking. Even when there is lots of DRAMA that comes along with it.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

The Beginning

Well here it goes, I am giving in to a new world, the world of blogging. A fad maybe but a way to share with people what is going on in our lives, our journey that God has put us on, memoirs of our life. I am so thankful for how God works in our lives, we want you to follow us on our journey with Him.
We are on an unbelievable journey right now. Not sure where the journey is even taking us but there is one thing that is for sure, our God never changes. He is the same God who is giving blessings when things in life seem to be going well. He is also the God who allows trial to stretch us and mold us into who we are to become and hopefully in becoming more like Him through each step.
Maybe I should explain a bit. You see just 7 months ago we were in a ministry that we thought we were going to be in for a long time. But God in His sovereignty had other plans. We resigned from that ministry just 5 months ago. Who would have thought that in just 2 months our lives would be turned up side down ( at least in our minds) and we would have no idea what we would be doing or where we were going to end up. We have relied on the promise of Jeremiah 29:11 "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord,"plans to prosper you and not harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." you see I have had to remember that God is not going to allow us anything that He is not going to allow good in some way. Yes it is hard but we are so excited to see what God is going to do and see where he is going to take us.
No, it is not what we had planned. We did not plan to leave our home that we loved but God did. We did not plan to leave people whom we loved a great deal but God did. Why? For us to be able to see who He is even more. To see His sovereignty, to see Him as our provider and not us ourselves. To see Him as Father who loves His children more than anything else. Yes we are growing through this to become even more like our Loving Father. Allowing Him to work in our lives as He sees best.
We are excited to see what God has for us;the next step in our journey with Him. Why don't you come follow us as we keep walking through the doors. Some that will open some that will close but hopefully striving to be faithful as we walk through each one.