Monthly Archives: September 2010

how’s your spirit?

Proverbs 18:14

The Message “A healthy spirit conquers adversity, 
but what can you do when the spirit is crushed?”

NIV “A man’s spirit sustains him in sickness, 
but a crushed spirit who can bear?”

Romans 12:1 NIV “Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God–this is your spiritual act of worship.”

Luke 1:46-47 NIV And Mary said: 
“My soul glorifies the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior”

2 Timothy 4:21 NIV “The Lord be with your spirit. Grace be with you.”

We spend so much time making sure our bodies are healthy and place so much focus on fostering our soul’s longing for Christ, but lately I see that our sweet, God given spirits become neglected.  I’m not saying that we shouldn’t take care of our mind, body, and soul; I’m just saying that I think we often forget to minister to our spirit, or we don’t realize how important a healthy spirit is.

I’ve had the privilege to spend this week with a group of wonderful pastors, counselors, and God-fearing people who are taking an active stance in spiritual warfare and kingdom living.  It’s been such a blessing.  One of the things we’ve been talking about is taking care of your spirit; blessing your spirit.  I think it becomes evident in scripture that your spirit is a precious entity that needs attention.  Often scripture alludes to both the soul and spirit; I don’t think it’s just flowery language but rather it’s two separate parts that both need nourishment.

What I’ve learned this week is that it’s as simple as asking your spirit if it’s ok, asking your spirit if it is being bound, or needs healing, and letting God show you how to heal it.  In my experience if God shows you what’s hurting He will show you the way back to joy.  I think that it’s a process, another part of the journey.  I’m still learning and letting the Father teach me. But for me, starting this journey of connecting with my God-given spirit and finding out what hurts it, what has “crushed” it (Proverbs 18:14); in one evening it has already made a difference.

A precious friend shared these books with my mother and I this week, and when it comes time to minister to your spirit these prayers and scriptures are uplifting and helpful; however I think that along the way many of our spirits need to be knit back together, to forgive what has “crushed” them, and allow God to heal them. From there we continue to nourish and strengthen our spirits through the truth, which is the Word.

Blessing Your Spirit by: Sylvia Gunter & Arthur Burk

You are blessed in the names of God by: Sylvia Gunter

Leave a comment

Filed under My Life, scripture

Let’s Dance.

Psalm 30:11

NIV “You turned my wailing into dancing; 
you removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy”

KJV “Thou hast turned for me my mourning into dancing: thou hast put off my sackcloth, and girded me with gladness”

NKJV “ You have turned for me my mourning into dancing; 
You have put off my sackcloth and clothed me with gladness”

The Message “You did it: you changed wild lament 
into whirling dance; 
You ripped off my black mourning band and decked me with wildflowers.”

ASV “ Thou hast turned for me my mourning into dancing”

It does not matter what translation you look it; the message is clear. The Lord has turned mourning into dancing. It’s not just that God puts us back together and we are happy again, it’s so much more. It’s not just that we no longer mourn, but that we can DANCE!

When I’m so excited I start jumping and twirling with arms over head, I’m more that just happy, I’m more than fine, I’m full of JOY! That’s the kind of transformation God likes to bless us with. I love that these verses give all credit to God – “YOU did it” “THOU hast turned for me” “YOU have turned” God does it all. He alone replaces our mourning with joy. He alone provides the healing we need to dance.

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Forgiven

I’m the type of person who tends to be very hard on myself.  When I mess up, sin, and fall short I’m the type of person who beats myself up about it.  I have no trouble believing that God forgives me, and I find that it so much easier to forgive others than it is to forgive myself.  I believe that Christ loved me so much that He died for my sins, my mistakes, my mess-ups, and all the negative feelings associated with them – He took it all – the sin and the fallout.  I usually find that when I hurt others they too can forgive me; it may take time and healing, but forgiveness is there.

Forgiving myself and really letting go takes much, much longer.  However, not forgiving myself is also a sin, and by grace I am forgiven for that too.  So here goes forgiving and loving myself.  Forgiving myself for falling short this morning, and forgiving myself for things done years ago.  Jesus did not die so that I would continually beat myself up over my shortcomings.  We all sin, we all fall short.  Perfect is not an option, and why would I want to be perfect? If I were perfect I wouldn’t need grace.  I’m glad I need grace.

The mind-set that I have to hold on and continue to punish myself for things that I have called sin and asked the Lord’s forgiveness for, is not of Christ.  It must be dealt with because it rises up against the love, grace, mercy, and forgiveness that Christ gladly offers.

Lord, please forgive my unforgiveness. By not forgiving myself, I am not fully accepting what You did that day on the cross.  You have forgiven me, and the matter is settled. I am washed clean by the blood of the Lamb. I am complete in You, Yeshua Ha Meshiach.

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

washed by the water

I love this song.  I love the reminder of being washed by the water; having the Holy Spirit wash over me. I really love the way this song sounds; it makes me want to move – arms wide, hips swaying, singing along. For me this is a song that just feels good.

“Just tryin’ to make the world a little better
You know, shine a light”

Leave a comment

Filed under music

Frodo and the Gospel of John

John 1:1-18

 

Before reading this you should know I’m a huge Lord of the Rings fan.  I read the books when I was a kid, and absolutely love the movies…hence this blog about Frodo and the Gospel of John.

The beginning of the book of John reminds me of a Lord of the Rings movie.  It’s in the way the narrator introduces the story of Christ; to me it sounds so much like something the orator at the beginning of the Fellowship of the Rings would say.  It’s beautiful, mysterious, and ominous.  It’s the grand opening for what it is to come; it hooks you.  I think it’s beautiful, powerful, and vague in such a way that draws you deeper into the story.  In the way it begins you get that feeling like you know something big is coming, something that you don’t yet fully understand, something that may be beyond you to fully comprehend, but that is still occurring right before us.

In this book we begin with creation; “The Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made.”  The wording of the passage is inspiring; it makes me want to jump in and learn and try to understand the story of the one who made all things, who is the Word and who is with God.  The book of John was clearly written by a storyteller, who wants us to reflect and think on the scripture. It is different in style from any other gospel, and I think that is what captivates me about it.  I just want to let the word wash over me as the writer lays it out in a way meant to entice, and to force us to think on the nature of Christ.  Because that is exactly what the opening does in its vacuity and powerful language, we can’t help but want more.  This being, the Word that is life that is the light of man, something darkness cannot understand, is profound and it is bigger than our imagination – the ultimate higher power. And then, like Frodo being introduced for the first time in the Fellowship, the narrator turns to John.  John is introduced as a bridge between something powerful and unknown – something he cannot fully understand, but he continues to use his life to make the glory of the Lord known to us.  John attempts to explain the power, glory, and light of the Lord through his understanding and experience; which likens to Frodo trying to convey the power of the one ring to those who have not experienced what it can do.

The book of John wants to reveal the glory of Christ, not only convey the magnificent life of Christ, but also to allow the reader to dwell on the character and nature of God.  John 1:12 says, “yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God…” The language, in its subtle yet strong way, clearly indicates power.  It conveys the higher power that is Christ.  That he came as man, but He is God, and he alone gives us the right to become children of God.  That’s incredible.  He is bestowing something upon us.  It’s majestic and worthy of pause and consideration; that because we believe he gives us the right to become children of the Living God. Amazing. We can come to him, but it is because he allows it that we are born again of God.  We believe in his holy name, and He bring unto himself.

I think the Gospel of John is beautiful, and yes when I read it I am often hearing the voice of the orator of the Lord of Rings in my head.  It’s the beginning of an adventure, a quest, and a journey that will impact the world.  The world as we know it does hang in the balance of people understanding the glory and the light of the Lord.  Frodo understood the magnitude of his quest to Mordor, and I hope that along our journey to follow after and share the glory of Christ, we do it with the same sense of urgency, fortitude, and zealous adventure.

1 Comment

Filed under Uncategorized

sweet saturday.

A few pictures from the past few Saturdays that have been absolutely wonderful.

these are my sweet saturdays.

Some of the best Saturdays are spent at home.  Just relaxing and enjoying family.  This was a very peaceful Saturday.

Dad grilling up some delicious food

swimming in the backyard

just enjoying life and relaxing

Over Labor day weekend two of my very best friends came to visit from Texas. I did my best to show them around Tulsa including the Zoo 🙂

this may have been our very favorite animal

we also really love this animal.

 

 

These are pictures from a few of my Saturdays and they have been just perfect.  I can’t wait for tomorrow!! Have a beautiful weekend!

Leave a comment

Filed under My Life

the LIVING book

For me some of the happiest, most joyful, most comforting, and just plain exciting parts of the Bible are the blessings written for those who hear the word.  Specifically, I am drawn to the blessings found in New Testament scripture. Such as the letters from Paul, which often begin with “grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.” Blessings like this are found throughout the entirety of scripture.  They are often short and sweet and buried within the introduction of the text, and far too often I skip over them and plunge right into the heart of the message, but I have found that these blessings are so very important.

They were blessings first written towards the early church, but they are still very much alive today.  They are written for those who hear the word and for those who read the word; they have blessed not only the people of the early church but every generation since. I do not think that these greetings and prayers, for those who come in contact with the word, could ever dry up or expire.  The Bible is the living word of God, and the blessings it has for the people are just as relevant today as when they were written.  Those prayers uttered so long ago, that were lifted up for those who embrace the scripture, are still working in our lives today.  We are so blessed to have some of them in writing here before us.  In my mind those prayers being uttered, for grace and peace, span the generations of believers; and so I find it uplifting and joyful to spend a moment reading and reflecting on the implications of those words.  This book is living, it is His gift to us, it is His holy inerrant word, and it is full of blessing because of how He loves us. Enjoy it.

Romans 1:7

1 Corinthians 1:3-9

Ephesians 6:24

Revelation 1:3

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized