My family

My family
Child of God, Mother, Wife, Sister, Daughter, Aunt, and friend

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Wear it like Perfume

David and I read a really great devotion the other night. There was a great illustration of how we should "wear our faith" as believers. This comes from "Every day with Jesus."

A Spreading Fragrance
"We are unto God a sweet savor of Christ."
2 Corinthians 2:15

J.B. Phillips translates this verse, "Through us spreads the fragrance of the knowledge of HIM everywhere. We Christians have the unmistakable scent (or fragrance) of Christ."

Rita Snowden tells a delightful story. She was sitting at the window of a house where she was staying on vacation and suddenly the air seemed to fill with fragrance. It was so noticeable, so striking, that she asked herself where on earth it could be coming from. She looked out of the
window and all she could see were ordinary people walking up and down the street. She went out and the fragrance was stronger than ever. So she inquired, "Where does this fragrance come from?" The hostess of the house said, "Don't you know? These people all work in a perfume factory. They live in the fragrance all day and when they come out at lunchtime they bring the fragrance with them."

Do we bear the fragrance of Christ so that wherever you go there is something different about us that makes people want to follow and find the secret?

I don't know about you, but I want to wear my "Christ" perfume everyday, and I want to bathe in it!

Monday, November 26, 2007

Love them, as I love you...

These words were literally whispered in my ear the other day, and every day since. I've also heard the words "without limits, without boundaries, without ceasing" I have never had a problem loving others, but loving them as Christ loves me, that's something else entirely. The challenge lies in loving the people that our flesh tells us not to. We all know the "golden rule" in the bible that says, "Do to others as you would have them do to you," (Luke 6:31) but do you know the next couple of verses? It says,

"If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners love those who love them. And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners do that." (Luke 6:32-33)

This is a pretty convicting passage. So many times we as Christians find ourselves surrounded by other believers. I'm not saying this is a bad thing, because we certainly need that accountability, but if we are not also surrounding ourselves with the lost, then we are not truly fulfilling God's call for us. We are to be lighthouses in a world of darkness.
Look for the God's challenges. Love the lost. Love your enemies. Spread God's truth...

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Sacrificially Giving

This is something that has been on my heart. We are called to do many things when we are born again believers. We are called to pray for others, we are called to witness to the lost, we are called to love unconditionally, we are called to seek HIS face more everyday, and we are called to give back what is rightfully HIS. By this, of course I mean to tithe. It bothers me that there are Christians in this world who either don't see the importance in it, or just don't think it's important enough. Scripture tells us that we should look at "our" money as HIS first. (Leviticus 27:30) Why then do we not give back to the Lord what is HIS to begin with? There shouldn't even be the question of working our tithe into our budget. We should give with joyful hearts and know that HIS money is glorifying HIS kingdom. Many people have the worry factor. They worry that if they are to give 10 percent in tithings, then they won't have enough left over to accommodate the lifestyle they have grown accustom to. When this is the case, I believe that we should take a step back and re-examine our priorities. Is it then more important to give to his kingdom or to give for our own entertainment? The answer is obvious. God is our ultimate provider, and HE will always find a way for ends to meet, providing we are obedient to His word. I am reminded of a time last year at my church. We were challenged to sacrificially give one week's earnings into the chest of Joash. My immediate response to this challenge was "No way! How in the world are we supposed to make our bills for the month?" The day of the challenge came, and I had only written out a check for half of a weeks earnings. I felt good about this decision, until the call came for everyone to deposit their checks into the chest at the alter. I was heavily convicted. Truth is, I have no idea what it TRULY is to sacrificially give. There are people in the world who don't even have roofs over their heads, and they still give. I couldn't ignore God's whispers. I quickly ripped out a new check and made it for the full week's earnings amount. Walking up to the alter, I still had feelings of doubt. "Where would the money come from for the bills that month?" As soon as I let go of the check, along with it went my fears and doubts. Somehow I just knew we would be OK. Not only that, I felt a great sense of joy in giving like that. A couple week's after that, we received an unexpected check in the mail. Coincidence? No....that was our awesome Lord's provisions. Since then, I look at giving as a way to exercise my faith in HIS promises. Thank you Lord for being my rock, my salvation and my ultimate provider!

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Keeping Christ in Christmas

More and more with every year that passes, I am saddened at the lack of Christ being included in Christmas celebrations. I mean, HELLO! Without Christ in Christmas, aren't we just celebrating "mas" and "Santa Claus?" I for one plan on raising my children to KNOW what Christmas is really about. Not about giving/getting presents. Not about setting out milk and cookies for Santa. Not about traveling home to see family. Not about picking out the perfect tree. It's not that I don't want to have some of these traditions, it's just that my priorities lie in sitting down every year with my children and reading them the Christmas story from the best book I know.....HIS holy, precious and perfect word. I thank God everyday that I live in a country that allows me, a believer, to worship freely, and especially around Christmas, I plan to do just that! You see....this beautiful holiday is not about the frills, thrills or shiny things. It's about remembering times of the most humble beginnings....
Just a baby in a stable, sent to save us from our sin....

God's path for HIS own beloved son led through a lowly stable. His only worshipers were his parents and the poor shepherds, who in the secluded stillness of the night, could hear the angels sing. On our
pilgrimage, how can we best worship Jesus today and this Christmas?

"Twas a humble birthplace, but O how much
God gave to us that day.
From the manger bed,
what a path has led.

What a perfect, holy way.

Alleluia! Oh how the angels sang.
Alleluia! How it rang!
And the sky was bright with a holy light
Twas' the birth of a King!
(The Birthday of a King by William H. Neidlinger)

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Blessings Box

We did this craft about a month ago in my MOPS group. I thought it was really cool, and being that today is November 1st, I've got Thanksgiving on the brain, so I thought this was fitting. It's good to remind ourselves and each other of things that we are thankful for. I myself, will be keeping this box around for years to come. The idea is simply this: to write down on a piece of paper, something you are thankful for. In other words, your blessings. It can be something general, or something that may have touched you dearly one day. The other day, I was just chatting away with Kayla, and I realized how blessed I am to have a little buddy to talk to , as I am pretty lonely these days with David being gone so much. On Thanksgiving, we will be opening the box and reading all of the papers.....