I Press on toward the Goal

Happy New Year everyone. I’m sure you are all back in full swing of life after the holidays. For some it’s a relief to settle down into life again and for others it may still be a little crazy. According to the commercials we all need to join that gym and find our bodies again and of course as we are organizing ourselves we need to organize our homes. So my question to you is, ‘ how is that new years resolution working out for you?” I’m not knocking anyone who has made a new years resolution, in fact I admire the tenacity and determination you have. You have made a commitment to do something to better your life and that is very commendable. I on the other hand don’t make resolutions because I never follow thru with them; actually I barely get them started. But there is something that I started over forty years ago that has changed and is still changing every area of my life, has held my interest and has continually exercised every part of my being inside and out. That something is my relationship with God through his son Jesus Christ. Now my friends that has been quite a workout for me as I have allowed him access to areas of me that have been dark, stubborn, rebellious, and angry and I could go on and on. He has taken me to mountaintops and very low crevices that I wasn’t sure I would get out of. He has laughed with me and cried with me has embraced me and talked with me. He has corrected me, healed me and delivered me, from me, and most of all he has never left me but loved me through it all. Again I could go on and on. You see I looked up the meaning of resolution and it means “ a firm decision to do or not to do something. Yes I have had to make resolutions all along my journey and relationship with Jesus, but I want to make those daily and as I’m led, I don’t want to let something go until a new year, I want to make that resolution right away.
The resolution I made over forty years ago as stated in Philippians 3; 14 “ I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. V16: “ let us keep living by that same standard to which we have attained.”
My encouragement to you and even to myself is to press on in Jesus for He is our goal and our prize is eternity with him. Make that daily resolution to listen and be led to allow him access to you. It’s that Christ like glow that conquers the day. May your New Year be filled with all of God and his best for you. And that’s “mylivinglife”

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The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year

That’s what they say about this time of year from Thanksgiving to January 1st.Although I’d like to share with you that just because it titled “The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year “ it doesn’t mean it is. Actually for more people than we will know it is the most depressing time of the year. Life doesn’t stop with bad news, tragedy or loss of any kind when the calendar turns to this time of the year. Quite the contrary, the bad news comes, tragedy hits and loss happens. For some loss has already happened and this time of the year makes it harder to bear. For those in mourning it doesn’t turn into laughter and joy just because the song is being sung. The loss of a loved one is a very real and traumatic thing that happens to us all. Whether it’s expected or unexpected it’s all trauma and it hurts. So what does one do during such a time as this when there is no joy? First of all it’s OK to cry. There is healing in tears and second don’t deny the pain and heartache you feel, for in denial one tends to withdraw within themselves. When this happens it’s much harder for one to reach out for the comfort that is so desperately needed. Lets reflect on a story in the scriptures that is a very good example. In John 11:17-45. This is the story of Martha and Mary when their brother Lazarus died. They both were very troubled and mourning his death when Jesus came back into town. In the story Jesus called forth Lazarus from the dead but that is not the part I want to talk about. It’s that place that yes they questioned where Jesus was and why he wasn’t there when their brother was dying but it’s also the part of the scripture that tells us how they in their loss and heartache allowed Jesus into that place to comfort them and help them. It’s that place that we so often close off to God and to others when we are hurting so bad that we can only see the darkness. Mourning the loss of a loved one is inevitable, we are humans living in a fallen world. It’s a part of being human, not the best part but most definitely a part. Before Jesus ascended to the Father he told us he would send us a comforter. Jesus himself said I will give you peace that passes all understanding. Jesus himself is peace. Jesus came to give us life and life more abundantly. How then does the trauma of loss and bad news bring us such despair and rob us of life and peace, and keep us form being comforted?

Another example I would like to point out is when Jesus was on the cross and at that moment the he bore all of our sins on himself and the Father looked away because in him there is no sin. Jesus cried out in agony to the Father saying “My God My God why have you forsaken me?” It was the sin that separated Jesus from the Father and that brought the most agonizing reality to our savior because the presence of the Father wasn’t with him. Jesus died to reconcile us to the Father and nothing will stand in the way of that relationship unless we let it. We are loved with a perfect love and we are given the keys to the kingdom. We shouldn’t be moved away from that gift, that reality and that relationship by what happens here. Yes it hurts beyond words and yes it feels like the life has been sucked out of us. But it hasn’t if we don’t let it. Just like Mary and Martha, they took their sorrow, heartache and loss to Jesus. They still had questions but they allowed him into that place in their hearts. For me the holidays have brought great sorrow. My brother had big plans to join us on Thanksgiving after being away for several years in the service, and as the day grew closer and the excitement was mounting we lost him to a drunk driver in another state. During the holidays that was the most festive time for my mother. Her body could not fight the cancer and the battle was lost on new years day, and for my youngest sister of forty who was a widow and the mother of four young children, her battle to cancer was lost on January 29th. The lights still shine and the music still plays “It’s the most wonderful time of the year!” and it doesn’t stop the loss and the heartache. But with my heart open to the one who is peace and the comforter whom Jesus sent to me. I’m one with the Father and yes it still hurts and yes I miss my family but my joy is complete and my life is full. I’ve been given the keys to the kingdom and lights are bright and the songs are being sung, because I’ve chosen life. Life here in the now and life eternal. For those who are mourning loss of any kind, its ok to cry, it’s ok to mourn and it’s ok to ask a question but take all of that to the one who came to give us life more abundant here and eternally. Be honest with yourself and with God so in that confession there is no denial and your heart opens up to the life giver. No matter what time of the year it is, it can be the most wonderful time if we allow ourselves life to overcome the loss. Blessings to you in whatever time of the year you are in and may you allow the giver of life into your life.

 

Commit thy Way

Psalm 37:5

Commit your way to the Lord; Trust also in Him, and He will do it.

And God did it!

It’s been a year since I started this blog! It’s my anniversary and I’m more than excited

That I made it a year. I have loved blogging and hope all of you that have read and followed have enjoyed it also. Thank you to you all for reading my thoughts and heart on life as I live it and see it. Today as I write I have so much going on in several areas of my life. On the home front my husband is stable and working. He is in remission and we are thankful for every day that God gives us. We are working toward that retirement. With friends I seem to have many who are going through very stressful health issues. My prayer closet has a revolving door and that’s ok by me. Besides all the issues we have in our country and world kneepads are a blessing! On the other hand here we are at the beginning of November with Thanksgiving and Christmas upon us and as usual sewing jobs and sewing presents are piled high. Every year I tell myself “self you need to start these projects much earlier in the year” but here I am telling myself the same thing and still hoping and praying for the time and endurance to complete them all. Would I really thrive any other way at the holidays? Noodles to make, baking to do, needles to thread, I will not dread. So thankful for it all. As you logged on today you probably noticed a different picture. My friend so graciously took this photo as I worshipped with my flags by the water. I love to worship with my flags I get lost in Jesus and next to the water barefoot in the sand was marvelous. As we begin a season of festive blessings and family may the reality of Gods presence be so very real to each one of us at all times.  Hoping this second year will be as wonderful as this first year. Thank you all again. Blessings.

All things work together for our Good

I’d like to share with you today about a test I just had done. One would think that at retirement age you would be done with allergies getting worse but that doesn’t seem to be the case with me. I have always had an allergy to fragrance and sulfa and for the last 35 years I have been plagued with eczema. Now to me these were quite enough to deal with and I had them pretty much under control. But then about three year ago the eczema decided to show up on my hands. Being a seamstress and working in a fabric store I discovered that fabric and eczema collided. On top of that for the past many months the itching and my skin being on fire started creeping in. With my regular doctor being clueless and my dermatologist just giving me cream to apply I decided I would see an allergist. I had no clue what that allergy test would uncover but I was totally not prepared for what I learned. I had the full panel, which is foods and outside. With outside they told me I might want to think about a bubble in the spring, summer and fall and with foods out of sixty- nine I tested positive for sixty- two. I find this to be quite a surprise to say the least. So how does one go forward with such a report? Now I must go into my deep gratification that this is not fatal or even life threatening or me. I have friends who are celiac and have know them to have to be hospitalized at times. I have a son with Asthma and that is life threatening and I have another son with an allergy to Tylenol that is also life threatening. So I’m not complaining a bit. I am thankful that I now know what I’m dealing with and to be honest I know it will take me quite awhile to figure this food thing out. So once again Gods word in has come alive in me. Romans 8:28 And we know that to them that love God all things work together for good, even to them that are called according to his purpose. I know that I love God and he has a purpose for me. As I work through all that I can’t have and rely fully on God with what I can have, it will all work together for my good. I truly can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. Out of the seven things that I can have, I can have chocolate, pineapple, bacon and tea. What’s not good about that? And that’s living life

Until Crist be formed in You

As a believer who has a burden for the lost, God blessed me with a sister in Christ who is also a prayer warrior with me. We spend much time in prayer for our families, friends and even our foes. We have a huge outreach at our church for the nations and praying for all those listed is endless. Nonetheless God has our hearts in this and we are relentless warriors on the behalf of many. I’d like to say that every family member near and far are truly Gods own and I’m sure those of you reading this can say the same thing but truth be told the answer is no. I wish, trusting God and God is faithful, and Jesus is the Savior are but a few phrases we use as we wait for salvation for those we are praying for. A couple weeks ago we were praying over one of our children again, and the scripture came to me in Galatians 4:19 My little children, of whom I am again in travail until Christ be formed in you. I decided to read the whole chapter to get a better perspective as to what Paul was saying. Paul begins the chapter reflecting on the law in the Old Testament. Then moves into the fullness of time when Christ was sent as the Messiah to bear our sins and bring us eternal life with God in heaven. Throughout Paul talks about the bondage we were in without Christ and the freedom we have in Christ. He share his own body scars from being tortured and imprisoned and his thankfulness for the love of the body who had not judged him but embraced him to the point of wanting to give all they had for him. Paul is writing to a body that he is not physically close to him and he has learned that they are falling back under the law, not believing and living under Gods grace. In verse 19 he is in agony for them as he says “ I am again in travail for you until Christ be formed in you.” It seems there are some in our prayer time that we truly travail for in agony until Christ be formed in them. Those who know the truth and the way of salvation, but don’t seem to have that revelation that gives them the power to stay the course. In scripture I can always find where God has set the course before us and a brother or sister in Christ has had the same heartache as I am experiencing. Paul said it well “ I am again in travail until Christ be formed in you”. I will stay the course and stay in travail until Christ be formed in those God has given me to pray for. It’s the Holy Spirit who brings conviction and draws people unto Jesus. It’s the Holy Spirit who brings us into all truth, teaches us and brings revelation to us. So together with the Holy Spirit I will travail, believe and trust for Christ to be formed in them to stay the course to eternity.

Taking Authority

I would like to thank a friend for the prayer she posted the other day for joy. As I read through her prayer for joy to be restored, I realized I had lost my joy and was under such heaviness for the past few weeks, that sleep wouldn’t even restore. The scripture in Isaiah 61:3 came to mind. To appoint to them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness.” That was it for me, mourning and heaviness. I was still mourning the loss of my grandson and bearing the heaviness of my husbands illness. So as I was getting ready for work I was sitting in the living room putting on my shoes I began to pray. Actually I began to war ,I commanded Satan to gather up his demons, workers and cohorts out of every room, off of everything, top to bottom, side to side and commanded them out of my house off my property and to the feet of Jesus. Just as I commanded them out, there was a loud thud in one of the bedrooms,  Zoe, my dog, and I looked at the same time in the direction of the thud and then at each other. As I crept through the bedrooms looking for whatever the thud was, and finding nothing, I pictured a demon tripping over something as it was leaving and it made me laugh. As I was praying I felt the heaviness lift off of me, and it felt good. The scriptures tell us in the gospels that Jesus gives us authority. In Luke 10:19 Jesus says “ Behold I give you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means hurt you.” Just like our prayer circle at church is a tool to train us up and teach us in the gifts given to us by the Holy Spirit. When Jesus gave us authority we need to be trained up in it. To use it so the authority Jesus has given us can be established in our lives, on earth and in the spirit realm. Receive the authority Jesus has given you and use it so it will be established in your life and in the Kingdom of God, for the Glory of God. And that’s living life!

An Out Reach for Christ

While at work last night, two young men came into the store. Unlikely place for two young men, you see it’s a fabric store. As I was putting things back on the shelf they approached me. A little bashful and apologizing for interrupting my work, the one young man proceeded to ask me if I had pain in my body. Then quickly went on to say that they were Christians and walking through the mall wanting to pray for people. I quickly let my guard down knowing they weren’t trying to sell me anything or a cult, and began to talk. I told them, “for my age I thought I was doing pretty well but would always welcome prayer” and proceeded to ask for prayer for my husband. I began to share with them what a blessing they are to people and how they are honoring God. I went on too share with them that I have been a believer for over 40 years and how it’s a process to be Christ like. Speaking as the Holy Spirit led I was able to minister to them and encourage them in their journey with Jesus. I then got called away to take care of a customer. I was blessed for that God encounter with young believers, the one was a brand new Christian. That was surely a God moment that I embrace with thankfulness and blessing. So keep on in your journey with Jesus, he is the way the truth and the very life you breathe and live. For each step you encounter whether triumph or trial will be one more step bearing the image of Christ in your body soul and spirit. And that’s living life!