Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Week of NO weakness

This week I am attending "Week of NO weakness". This was the idea of Kenlie Hall, a Christian young lady in Hocutt's Youth group. She is doing this for her Senior Project. I want to personally say, "Thank you Kenlie, we are very proud of you at Hocutt." "The future of Hocutt will be in good hands with young people like you."
"Week of No weakness" is where you wear a wristband that Kenlie had made. It says, "Week of No weakness, Joshua 1:9". The idea is to wear this wristband for the week of October 24. But I am sure many will wear this well beyond this date.
Kenlie has 886 people signed up to participate in this event. She has given out 1,400 wristbands to people all over the country, and also Ethiopia, and Afghanistan.
If you are not familiar with this verse it says, "Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous! Do not tremble or be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go."
I love how The Message reads, " Haven't I commanded you? Strength! Courage! Don't be timid; don't get discouraged. God, your God, is with you every step you take."
God is saying here that He has already told them to be strong. In Joshua 1:6 " Be strong and courageous..." Joshua 1:7 " Only be strong and very courageous...". So when we get to verse 9, God has already said this twice before and He emphasizes this for a third time. Do you think He was trying to drive His point home? I think if someone repeats something three times, they mean what they say, don't you?
I know as a Mom, I would do that with my children when they were little. I would repeat myself to make sure they were getting what I was saying to them. Sometimes I would even have them repeat it back to me!
How can we go through life and not be timid, or tremble with fear? Especially in the world we live in today? God Himself answered that for us in the last part of verse 9. Our great YAHWEH God is with us wherever we go! Every step we take in this unsteady world, He is right there with us. In fact, Isaiah 41:13 says, " For I am the LORD, your God, who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you."
So in conclusion, not only does our personal God go with us every step we take, but He holds us by our right hand. If we stumble, or slip, He has our hand. I can rely on His strength when I am weak.
He will not let me fall!
He gave them a command and it was "Be strong",banish fear, and take your courage! After all, the commander of the great army of God, our God Himself, is with us and holding our hand! Praise God, even when I am "weak", He is strong! He gives me strength in this journey called life.
Let's march on in His strength!

Monday, October 17, 2011

Koinonia Reflections

Just returned from a Women's Retreat at Fort Caswell on Oak Island, N.C. I thought I would share some thoughts about our "shared" experience this past weekend.
I believe that we not only experienced a greater "oneness" with the Lord, but also the true "Koinonia". A oneness in spirit with one another.
I looked up the definition for Koinonia and it means: fellowship, to share with one another a possession held in common. What is shared, received, or given becomes the common ground through which Koinonia becomes real, and this past weekend I believe it became real. Real to me, and real to many of women there in attendance.
I am reminded of the friendship between David and Jonathan in the Bible. The Bible says in I Samuel 18:1 that David and Jonathan were "one in spirit". That is how I felt with the women that I "retreated" with. One is spirit... How can this take place? We can be one in the spirit because we have the same Spirit that dwells in each of us! It is The Holy Spirit communing with the Holy Spirit in the other Sister in Christ.
Reflecting "retreat" thoughts...
deeply loving
shared memories
glorious victories
saved marriages
spoken truth
sweet prayers
carried burdens
wee-hour discussions
good food
fed souls
hidden talents uncovered
belly laughs
long walks on the beach
God's magnificent creation
wind blown faces
kissed by God
refreshment in the Word
lessons learned
tear stained faces
Christ exalted
enduring bonds...
lasting friendships...
deeply loving
from the heart

Monday, October 10, 2011

Poetry in Scripture

I have fallen in love with poetry lately. My eye is just drawn to it. Poetry in the turn of a word or phrase. Poetry in nature. Poetry in many things in my life.
Today I read beautiful words in scripture. Poetic words from the Psalmist David.
" When you lie down among the sheepfolds, You are like the wings of a dove covered with silver, and its pinions with glistening gold." Psalm 68: 13 (NASB)
Can you imagine the beauty of it? A dove is a beautiful creature, especially the all white ones. Can you picture what a dove would look like that is covered with silver and his wings are gold? The imagery of this is breath taking.
"When you lie down among the sheepfolds..." Jesus is our sheepfold. He is the shepherd that lies down at the entrance of the gate. We enter through Him. He has made a way for us to enter to this place where we can find rest. We get to lie down and be at peace and rest in the Lord. He provides that rest for us. He beckons us to rest.
Gratitude for...
The shepherd...
Gratitude for...
Poetry in Scripture...
in nature..
in life...
Gratitude for...

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Grace Space

grace space...
a space in your soul
reflections of Himself...
His image
cracked the space
Still reflecting...
God did chase...
made you whole...
With His grace...
He filled...
His place
with Himself...
what wonder...
magnificent, undeserved
grace space
" But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ by grace you have been saved." Ephesians 2: 4-5

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

I Hope...

i hope...
Two powerful words...
i hope... this seed will become food.
i hope... this bulb will be a beautiful daffodil
i hope... my baby will be healthy
i hope... my child will love the Lord
i husband will always love me
i hope... my cancer will be healed
i hope...I will not lose my job
i hope... We won't lose our home
i hope...I will make new friends
i hope... to be loved and accepted
i hope...I will always hope
i the Lord
Hope is something we need. It makes us put one foot in front of the other on the days we feel we can't go one. But in pondering the word "hope", it is essential to life. When a person "gives up hope" they don't have anything to live for.
I believe that hope comes from the Lord.
Psalm 119:49 "...for you have given me hope."
Looking at an acorn. I don't think the acorn is saying ," I hope... I will be a mighty oak tree." The tiny acorn may fall to the ground and without thinking about it, or concentrating.
It will...
crack open...
grow and grow... until...
It's a mighty oak tree.
It's becomes what it was created to be. It has what was placed within it by God...
the code.
So, I will have faith in what the Lord has given me...
His hope....
His love...
His eternal life... both now and forever more.
Psalm 13:3 "... put your hope in the Lord both now and forevermore.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

A Book of Remembrance

Last Saturday we buried a sweet, dear woman of God. She lived with Alzheimer's disease the latter part of her life. I loved watching how her husband and children cared for her and doted on her. She would come to church on Sunday nights with her husband and she would do her best to follow along and pay attention. They usually sat behind me so I was privy to hear what she would whisper to her beloved. She would usually say, "What book was that?" What chapter did he say?" She was still eager to learn about the Holy Word of God.
So when the Lord lead me to the book of Malachi a few days before she passed away, I paid special attention to a particular passage. Malachi 3: 16-17 (NASB) says, " Then those who feared the Lord spoke to one another, and the LORD gave attention and heard it, and a book of remembrance was written before Him for those who esteem His name. "They will be Mine," says the LORD of hosts, "on the day I prepare My own possession, and I will spare them as a man spares his own son who serves him."
The Lord is speaking here and He says that those who fear the Lord, (another version says "reverence my name"), spoke to one another. This is saying that if you reverence the Lord and you are talking to one another about Him, He has someone writing these things down in front of Him. This is a book of remembrance. It says "the LORD gave attention and heard it", or "He hearkens to hear it", as if He is stooping down, to hear everything that you are saying in honor of His name. Lastly, the scripture says, "They will be Mine," (KJV) says," they are my jewels". Oh my, I have to tell you that this was like taking some kind of tonic for my heart! It just made my heart leap for joy to read those words!
I am in awe that the God of the universe cares about my little conversation with another Christian. When we hallow His name He has it written down in a book of remembrance. He also calls me one of His jewels! This is almost more than I can fathom! How could anyone not love a God like this?
So, to tie this all together, Betty Lambert could not remember a lot of things in her latter days, but God had it all written down for her. When we can't remember, He does, and that's such a comfort to me. He knows that Betty once talked about Him and how much she loved Him. Even when she couldn't remember, God kept these memories for her and stored it in a beloved book of remembrance. But now that Betty is in heaven... She remembers everything and she is seeing her Saviour face to face. The Lord may have said something like this, "Welcome home my sweet jewel, I remember you and love you and that's the most important thing." "Your mind is fully restored and whole again. "Enter into the joy of your salvation."