April 20, 2014

Because of Him.

I can imagine the scene... sweat pouring from His brow.. "not My will, but Yours be done." 
I wonder to myself: how many times have I truly asked G-d to take away a cup I've been given? I have cried. I have sorrowed over different ones. I simply did not understand, did not want to go through such "pain." And my suffering hasn't even touched Jesus'.
But He always looked to His Father- our Father.
Just as we ought to. With love comes great sacrifice, and oh- was that hill up Calvary a sacrifice! If we are not experiencing sacrifice or differing opinions in our lives when we love G-d and others.. then are we truly living our lives with His love? It might be our form of love- which falls extremely short of G-d's form of love-- but most likely, it's not a Calvary kind of love.
That's what is asked of us.
Not my will, Father, but Yours. 
always Yours. 

Jesus really does reduce it all to "Follow Me."
Not "Follow Me when," or "Follow Me if."
But simply, "follow Me."

This day and beyond.. I'm praising G-d so very, very much for the new life He breathes into my heart. Praising G-d that He truly does call us to follow Him. Praising G-d that He invited us to Himself. Thank You, Jesus, for a Love that saves souls. Thank You for demonstrating Your love in the most spectacular and yet heartbreaking ways.
We have this Savior who knows... oh, every piece of us. Yet He still desires us to seek and find fulfillment in Him. His hope is never offered because of our goodness, but because of His grace. His is a Love that dies in order for us to live...

He has blessed me with so many of His good and perfect gifts over the past few days- and to have this reminder every single morning that His mercies are new; are lovely; are true- and that He is risen... is the greatest, most beautiful gift...

Wishing you a joyful day rejoicing in our L-rd~

April 12, 2014

-A Woman Who Fears the Lord-

Whenever I end a journal, I leave a quote in the back which I saw reflected throughout it... and whenever I begin a new journal, I pray about a quote to leave in the front. When I started my current journal on February 28th, I neglected to find a quote in which to begin that really spoke to my heart; but recently, in flipping through old notebooks, I found one. This is the true lady of true beauty, truly Proverbs 31; truly Titus 2;
Truly~ the lady I pray to be. 

And so, I wrote it in the front of my journal for this season:

"They say there is a lady in New Haven who is beloved of that Great Being who made and rules the world. 
They say that He fills her mind with exceeding sweet delight, and that hardly cares for anything except to meditate on Him. If you present all the world to her, with the richest of its treasures, she disregards it. She is unmindful of any pain or affliction. 
She has a singular purity in her affections. 
You could not persuade her to compromise her True Love even if you would give her all the world. 
She possesses a wonderful sweetness, calmness, and kindness to those around her. 
She will sometimes go about from place to place, singing sweetly. 
She seems to be always full of joy and pleasure, and no one knows exactly why. 
She loves to be alone walking in the fields and groves, and seems to have Someone invisible always conversing with her..." 
//Jonathan Edwards on his wife, Sara Edwards//

At last week's on-site Capstone for the third of three Leadership Courses, I met a woman (my facilitator's wife) who fits this description, and was so blessed to have a Q&A with her. 
Two of the questions asked were ones I was curious about, but hadn't gotten a chance to submit. 
First, how did you practice leadership as a single and married woman? And secondly, what have you been learning in Scripture through which you currently see G-d working through your life? 
I wrote as quickly as I could as she told us, in her soft-spoken, accented voice: Pursue G-d with all your heart. Follow the visions He gives you. 
Soak up His love like a sponge; discover what His love looks and feels like... and then squeeze that sponge on those around you." 
I smiled to myself as I listened to this. "L-rd, let me be a sponge," I prayed, and tears of such... oh, wonder of this principle filled my eyes. 
Let me be a sponge. 

We often, I think, think of serving G-d, but asking the question how we can be like Him causes us to reflect Him in our servant-hood as young ladies.
Knowing who G-d is emotionally reflects into everything in your life. Everything you know and do depends on how you know G-d.
Just as with Mary and Martha.. there's the time to be sent out... but then, oh, friends- there's the time to be a woman who fears the L-rd. And in order to be a woman who fears the L-rd... we have to sit at the feet of Jesus. We have to rest in His arms, truly.

I wish I could be more poetic. Or more... something, especially after my little hiatus. But this is something else.
In all of those sessions at the Capstone in Colorado... I almost believe this short session was among the ones that I will consistently remember throughout my life. Because... it was real. The other ones, while truthfully were real and honest and beautiful... this one was... alive. I could take each piece of wisdom shared, and apply it to my own life, present and future.

While I do have my own plans, which I know G-d has planted in my heart... I want to be open. And in all this life, if I complete none of those but to be a woman who fears the L-rd, as what the world considers wildly strange, a stay-at-home mother, as one who soaks up His light and love... my life would be complete.


March 31, 2014

-Worth It All-

"Because God wanted to make the unchanging nature of his purpose very clear to the heirs of what was promised, he confirmed it with an oath. God did this so that, by two unchangeable things in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have fled to take hold of the hope set before us may be greatly encouraged. We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure. It enters the inner sanctuary behind the curtain, where our forerunner, Jesus, has entered on our behalf." //Hebrews 6:16-20

To hope: to anticipate with a confident expectation in the outcome. True hope is a confidence worth relying upon. G-d promises us a future hope, one that is real, available; one that is strong, and is lasting: because He is a G-d who is faithful.
This isn't wishful thinking. This is a solemn promise of a certain, bright, wonderful future filled with promise. Jesus has promised He will come through on this; and this is wonder: that we can build our lives on Jesus without a fear of Him not coming through or questioning His will. The hope of His love is real- it's living. And it will never fade.

Corrie Ten Boom, one of my childhood heroines, returned to the hands that helped to cause her pain. Through this her hope and joy through that season of pain... was realized. I'm seeing right before me... that life really "begins" when we understand the G-d holds our entire existence safe in His hands, and who we truly are to Him.

Adoniram Judson said something profound... "The future is as bright as the promises of G-d." Are we thoroughly trusting in His promises? I'm guilty of worry over the future, concern over how "life" will happen. But what He's shown me... what I've heard and seen and cling to... is that one of the greatest, greatest blessings of affliction is that it's a season- temporary- where we can truly fix our eyes on the eternal. I love the stories of the missionaries who miss the atmosphere of a jail cell... because they truly felt G-d's peace, His presence so near.
And if G-d is for us...none of it matters.
But in those times where I know (because I still work on and pray for this surrender of every moment every day) I'm completely and wholly surrendered to my Savior- this is where hope and joy burst within our soul and spill over into our lives. This is the point where we want to share this with everyone.
This is the anchor of our soul... sure and steadfast. By His grace alone we have confidence that He will never leave us nor forsake us. As He calls us into this great unknown.. He will not unravel or fade. When we truly follow Jesus..we put our very lives and desires at His feet. And.. oh, it is scary to think about.
But He is worth it all.

Oh, my friends... all we have without Jesus... is nothing. Nothing.
He has a love both deep and wide. "G-d did not create us... to abandon us."
So let us live with abandon for love of Him.

Abba... i might not know or see the future. 
i look at my own "abilities" or "talents." 
i know i fall short. 
thank You that You're the only One who is more than enough. 
in my ups and downs and all the times in between, be my Confidence. 
be the One who puts a laugh in my mouth as i look to the future with an open heart... with joy-filled eyes. 
wherever You would call me... You are worth it.