Saturday, March 30, 2013

Easter 2013

Redeemed is the word of the weekend.

The slew of definitions that Merriam-Webster provides for this fitting word....they tell a story. They sink deep if you'll let them.

So as you read - and as your eyes fall on each phrase - let your heart well over.


- to buy back

- to get or win back

- to free from what distresses or harms

- to free from captivity by payment of ransom

- to extricate from or help to overcome something detrimental

- to release from blame or debt

- to free from the consequences of sin

- to change for the better

- to free from a lien by payment of an amount secured thereby

- to make good

- to atone for

- to offset the bad effect of

- to make worthwhile 

Read them again. Read what a real Jesus...did for a fallen world. And let the love of it all downright overwhelm you, friend.

Each definition deserves a commentary. But words fail me when I consider it.

Instead - I lift up words of prayer for you. 

Each one of you.

I'm praying.....that the reality of Christ comes big and sweet and fresh for you over the next 24 hours. I'm praying - that He reveals Himself to each soul that passes by this spot this week - in very obvious and intimate and faith-building and life-changing matter your matter your current state. So know - that if your eyes are seeing these words - your soul has been lifted up to the Lord.

And these prayers...coming from a mere girl who has tossed with the waves and who has grappled with dark doubt and who has tripped up too many times to count.....I offer these prayers of revelation for you in faith. In belief. In assurance that He will come to you.

I'm overwhelmed as I tap these keys -with a longing for us all to really know Christ's really be taken by it.

So may Christ on the cross and the reality of the empty tomb...really settle in for us this Easter.

And oh Jesus yes...let it change everything!

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

One Word - Two Issues

Our worship leader does it every Sunday.

Before the final song - he pauses the chords and quiets the lyrics and he commissions the congregation to ask the Spirit ...

... to bring to mind anything that is keeping us from God, from worship, from knowing Him.

And there's a hush that settles over the people and we all lift up this same concern together.

And often those moments....I feel like the Lord actually plasters something to my mind that is either keeping me in stagnate waters...or that is rushing me away from Him in some rip currant.

This past Sunday?

 ANGER...all bold and pronounced showed up in my mind's eye.

And for me...this isn't a surprise.

It seems as if I was born with a few short fuses. I don't get tiffy at most things. But when it comes to certain issues and certain people - I can fly into a fit in seconds.

But as I prayed over it on Sunday - I felt that the issue was two fold. I felt like the Lord was confronting me on anger, yes - but in two different ways:

1) Anger.... that is unjust


2) Anger..... that is for carrying out justice.

What's interesting about anger - is that anger in and of itself isn't wrong. It's an emotion we see throughout scripture, actually. It's an emotion we see Jesus having at times. But... the mind of a woman....while it is a gift and while it can be used for great can also spin a life right into a sick spiral.

I know. I've spun angry more than I care to admit.

However...I'm beginning to think that there is a way to righteously hone the hot sparklers that live in some of our bones.....

When we hear about the sex slave industry that is happening right here in our own cities - we should be highly ticked. When we find out about a child being abused - we should be enraged. When we see God's gifts being used for self-exaltation - or tithe money used for gross excess - or people, children, babies starving to death -  or lost souls being hated on by people who claim to know Christ - or our earth being treated as a trash dump - or fathers refusing to rise up and be the spiritual leaders of the home....we should be deeply aggravated....seriously angry.

Not rage angry....but righteously angry. 

Remember we all know...when anger is applied to petty frustrations...when it is seen in unwarranted situations...when it escalates to no end...when it becomes a dominate trait...when it's the farthest thing from fruitful....this is devastating.

So I've been pondering all this..... All this holy anger and evil anger and how to know when to apply the former and how to know how to extinguish the latter. Lord, help us.

Those of us who are a bit feisty - perhaps we are allowed to really feel injustice. Perhaps these quick tempers, when rightly applied, are put in place to spur people to action. To passion. To standing. To doing.To carrying out rescue and relief.

But oh...if we are not purposed in this...if we aren't on guard and constantly handing these hot heads over to Him...the enemy can secure a foothold in our lives - effecting generations.

But know....if we are intentional in this....if we daily lift up these firecracker tendencies to a holy God...this Maker of ours can weave a whole lot of goodness throughout our days here.

 Lord, help us to act and not just get angry. Help us to not just sit around shaking our heads at all that's wrong - but instead - help us to be shaken to action.

May He grow in us the tendencies He wants us to keep...and may He drive the wicked ones right out of us - all for His glory...and also for our very own good.

Friday, March 15, 2013

For Women

You want to know what's beautiful?

You want to know what's intricate and intimate and complicated and strong?

You want to know what's wonderfully imaginative?

And astoundingly accurate?

And beyond understanding?

And fantastic? And divinely organized?


The mind of a woman.

This crazy mass of complex design - this chief organ of neurons and synapses and's marvelous. Especially on us women.

We can recall conversations with ease. We can dream and imagine and ponder in wild vivid color. We can remember minute details and tuck away even the tiniest of hurts and joys and occurrences. We can weave all the areas of our lives into one detailed piece. We can remember words and exchanges and facts and glances....verbatim. (Much to the chagrin of husbands everywhere!)

And while all this is truly remarkable. And created. And given....

It can also be used for the fall.

This instrument of ours...that sits atop our can be twisted into a gnarly, tangled, broken mess of mass.

And we women of Christ - as we recognize the power we behold in our minds - we must recognize the potential we have to tarnish it all.

Our minds can lead us down roads that we were never meant to take....not even in the mental realm.

Like adultery. We have heard of emotional adultery. And we clearly understand physical adultery. But mental adultery? It's real. Us women...with our imaginative tendencies - we can have a man from our past - or a man from across the aisle - or a man from a movie - or a man from the office...wrapped in the embrace of our brains in seconds.

Like jealousy. We see something in another lady....her house, her husband, her hair.....her gifting, her blouse, her boobs, her role, her children, her bunt cake - and we covet it like a child covets a wanted toy that's in the grip of another babe.

Like fear. We let crazy, anxiety-inducing scenarios play out in our heads until we are convinced that those scenes will actually come to pass in our lives. And this leads to nothing but weariness and stagnation. We place safety and health above sanctification and hearts saved. (In this area....I am chief. Lord, help.)

Like haughtiness. We get some desired position, we get to volunteer on Sundays, we get asked to share at the next women's supper - and we suddenly walk about a foot higher...this brain in our minds suddenly amongst the clouds....suddenly above all the others.

Like self-loathing. We get insulted. Or we get reprimanded. Or dissed. Or overlooked. Or slighted. And we wallow. While these feelings are sometimes warranted - we sometimes choose to stay there. We women...we can even refuse healing. Why? Because we feel we deserve the right to be depressed. Because we get more attention being broken. Because less is expected of us when we aren't whole.

Please hear me saying this ever so gently....this has to be overcome.

The damage that's done to our hearts....all because of what we are thinking in our minds - its catastrophic.

We have got to turn this around. We have got to use this incredible device we've been given for ringing in His glory.

Instead of imagining ourselves basking in the brace of another man - let's imagine bringing our best to the husband we've been joined to. Period. Only him. Your marriage is holy ground - even up there in the solitude of your own thought life. Especially there.

Instead of pondering all the things we don't have ....let's wear thankfulness. Let's have it be how people describe us. Let's have grateful be the word they use. 

Instead of allowing the enemy to implant ferocious thoughts in our thinking - let's simply refute him with the sword...with the scriptures. Don't let those frightening images sit in your head even for a second. Immediate deployment of God's Word is necessary.

Instead of imagining ourselves ushering at services in a cute dress on a good hair day - let's usher in the Spirit to people. And likewise - instead of worrying about manicured nails and outfits and just-right jewelry when we present Him to people...let's bask in raw realness with our fellow sojourners. 

Instead of false-humility and backwards lowliness - let's recognize who we are in Him and the healing that's available by way of Jesus.

Is the Spirit speaking to somebody besides me?

Instead of filling our minds with sin-filled nonsense...let's fill it proper.

Let's have this vast imagination of ours let loose on Truth.

Scripture can change a mind - save a mind.

In the video I posted this week....Christine spoke about being faithful in anonymity and obscurity. You can't get any more obscure than in the mind, my friends.

So up that secret place - let's show our obedience to the Lord. Let's chase away and shoot down any thought that isn't righteous and life-giving and founded in goodness.

A 'no-trespassing' sign needs to be nailed up, if you will.

A decision to force out thoughts and images and ideas that aren't healthy and helpful and humble...needs to be made.

And you choose to obey Him faithfully in the places that people can't see - His blessings will abound...even in the places they can.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

A Video Worth the Watch

This little ledge here - the one I rest words's been bare lately!

Being able to sit still long enough - being able to settle into His presence - being able to just have a few moments for setting strong thoughts up on this spot...... has been hard to come by.

A week of illness, a husband on a business trip, schooling, overflowing laundry baskets - these are the things that can keep a Mama's typing set of fingers occupied! All joys...all the priority!

But I do not enjoy taking furloughs here! My soul is nourished by this thing! So as I warm back up to regular posts - I plead with you to watch the following video. I first came across this little gem at The Holy Experience. So, so glad I did. Every time I hear Christine speak - I'm moved to action and filled with passion and shaken awake.

These will be moments well spent for you - make sure you watch the entire teaching .... listen, scribble down notes, take it all in.

Let's keep running the race. Love to you all.