Thursday, September 29, 2011

More than Words

     I was on my way to the gym when my Christian station went all staticky. Begrudgingly I changed the station and heard the song More than Words by Extreme come on. I don't know what made me keep it me the song's always been such a snoozer I turn it off immediately. But this time I kept it on, and though I'm pretty sure I have an idea what the guys in the song are asking for...(ugh) I was able to get a spiritual application from it as well.

Isaiah 29:13
"And the Lord said: “Because this people draw near with their mouth and honor me with their lips, while their hearts are far from me, and their fear of me is a commandment taught by men...."ESV
     Most people think that Heaven is this happy place where there is never any human emotion like revenge or fear or sadness. To a degree, I believe this to be true also, but at the same time I completely believe these emotions exist- but only to God. Since He created our emotions, I think He feels every sinless emotion we feel, but He doesn't allow anyone or anything else in Eternity's Perfection to feel this. How can I not think that? Reread that verse up there. How would you feel if the one you loved more than anything in the world said they loved you too, said all the right things like how wonderful you are and how they couldn't make it through a day without you...but they never called you?Never wrote love letters?Never kissed,hugged,touched or spent time with you? Their words would show a closeness and devotion that wasn't really there. Their loyalty and love for you would be nothing but lies.

     If you've been reading this blog, you've probably read more than a few times about my husband's transformation. It's not that he was this horribly abusive raging alcoholic. He just was not what he is today. He was and has always been a faithful worker and provider....but from 2 years ago back he was more..I don't know..I guess selfish would be a good word. He wanted to do what he wanted  during his downtime, which is not a bad thing. But becoming completely deaf when I would be standing right there asking him a question or trying to spend some time with him because a game was on or he was playing his Playstation...that hurt. When I would tell him I was feeling disconnected or off he didn't get it, but figured it would pass. When he went to help me out with chores he did the minimum. I always tell the story of the time he asked"What do you want from me?" And I literally sat on top of him while he was on the floor, grabbed his face in my hands and( only half jokingly) yelled"I want flowers!Love notes!FLOWERS!"We were laughing at the time, but it wasn't funny. Even though I know he loved me because he said so, his actions said I was nothing more than his One and Mostly....
     The picture above was taken last Sunday. I have become quite the couponer and religiously need to get my Sunday paper from the gas station in town so I can get my coupons and circulars. For the past 4 weeks I have been unable to get them. By the time I am able to get every one up,dressed and out the door the papers have all been gone...and the general consensus is they are all out by 9:30am. Everywhere in town.So last Saurday I made the comment before bed that I was setting my alarm to go off at 6:15am so that I could get a paper. When I woke up the next morning it was to my son shaking me and it was 10:30!I completely freaked and ran him and the baby over(lol) and down the stairs I flew to the kitchen where I thought I had my clothes laid out. In frustration and confusion as to how this could have happened, I turned around and saw the papers and the note. I just stood and cried. It wasn't a diamond necklace, or flowers or a sink full of clean dishes.
It was better.
     It was a huge thing, regardless of him thinking it was small. He had stayed up all night( since we had gone to bed at like 1 or 2am anyway) and when 6am rolled around he got dressed, shut my phone off and snuck out into the chilly early morning to get not only 1 paper for me, but for every week that I had missed. 

     It takes alot to surprise me.Most people know I can't stand drives me crazy and I get super sleuthy to found stuff out,lol. But this man...this wonderful man...not only had he blessed me with more coupons than I could clip in a whole day, but he blessed me with 4 extra hours of precious rare sleep and managed to do the whole thing on the sly...he actually surprised me! 

     There is a bit more to why his staying up all night meant so much to me..but that is another post for another day. Suffice it to say though, I woke him up with smiles and tears and the warmest hug of thanks. Even before he opened his eyes he smiled and whispered, "You're welcome". The whole day I just stared at him in amazement.He is not at all who he was, and sometimes his past still haunts and scares me. I have to consciously try to pray against resentment and remember that who I thought I married never existed til now.

     God deserves our words to match up with our actions. Our hearts and lips must be in sync.We can not claim to be his children..his followers and listen to or watch garbage; we can't bless others or say we'll pray for them and cuss out the people who bother us; we can't post sweet pictures of angels or heaven or Jesus and be reading Hustlers (men) or desiring men who don't belong to us(women). How can we say we love Him when our actions don't?
Is God your One and Only, or your One and Mostly?

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

When Everything Falls Apart

"Why do bad things happen to good people?"

     This thought has been running through my head for  days. In the past day and a half the following contents of Pandora's Box have been dumped on me:

  1. I have a strange man that is literally stalking me and making me feel like a prisoner in my own home.
  2. My precious cell phone( my life and sanity) was dropped and fried
  3. I had to go against my nature and unintentionally hurt another person by cutting off communication with them
  4. I've had a small pack of my neighbors' starving hoarded dogs tear up my trash and drag it thru the streets
  5. 2 of my children became ill...
  6. ....which resulted in my staying up til 4:30am trying to get ahold of the dr. ....
  7. ....and hounding the poor nurses all day today to get that man to get me a Rx for them
     It's like since my last post where I decided not to worry about things I can't control, fate is testing me to see how serious I was. I was serious as a heart attack. I'm not worried- unless you count that whole stalker thing.

    But seriously, people always question why bad things happen to good people. I've heard different answers.
"Because those good people have done something wrong." A variation of this is "God is punishing them". I don't buy this at all.God has not even begun to play the role of Judge yet. Trust me, when that happens- the whole world will know- and there will be no question that this is what's happening.

"Because God doesn't care what happens." Again, so not true. God is not a gigantic 4 year old that created the world just to sit back and mess with us. Step outside once and awhile people- we are not the Sims,lol. If God didn't care what happens, why would He bother creating the seasons,the weather, recreating life with each and every new birth,and spilling His own blood to redeem souls to Heaven?  Ever hear this before?: "I asked God 'Lord,How much do you love me?' And He spread out His arms and died." This is my answer to those who truly believe God doesn't care. If anything it's people who don't care...not God.
     I've come to adopt a new way of thinking since my metamorphosis began. It's less pessimistic and I believe more on point and in tune with the Heart of God. 
"Because how would you know what a rainbow is unless you've gone through the storm?" Sure it sounds girly and emotional, but in all would you know what a rainbow looks like if you've never experienced a rain storm before? How would you know the energizing power of a Spring's sunlight unless you've spent months in Winter's grey? How would you recognize the awesome power and immensity of God's love for you if you've never dealt with trials and heartache? How would you know what an answer to pray is unless you've had something to pray about?

     Bad things happen to good people (and bad people) for the simple fact that there is sin in the world.There is evil in the world...but He loves us. The bad,hurtful and breaking things in this life are not because of God. They are in spite of God. And yes, He is always there when the stuff goes down...not because He caused it...but because, well, who else will be there to put the pieces back together when everything falls apart?

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

The Time Keeper

     You ever have one of those days where it's just gray and blah...and it feels like the the monotony of your hamster wheel life is going to slowly drive you insane? That's how my day started out. I get up the same time, I do the same things throughout the day, I worry/complain/pray about the same things day in and day out. Then at some point in today, I think God had had enough with my attitude and suddenly I felt like everything we've been hoping/wishing/waiting for all was coming at me at once. It was very overwhelming. Alot of what we are going to be dealing with and going through won't even happen for another year or 2 - and that's only barring Christ doesn't come back before then!But at some point in the day, I got enough of a breather to realize something: 
     I AM NOT GOD.
     Shocking, I know. I did not speak this world into existence piece by piece, I have not lovingly formed any body parts on tiny beings within another's womb, I have not cast down stars and I do not hold time in my hands. Why do we I worry? The Lord is the Alpha and the Omega- He was here before the beginning of our understanding of Time and He will be here when Time ceases to exist. At this very moment He can see not just our future, but us in our futures. Think about it. When you were 8 years old in school or at home doing whatever it was you were doing....God saw you at this very moment reading this sentence at the same exact time that He saw you as a child back then. Knowing this, why then do we worry and stress? Can we change God's mind and in essence, Time, by worrying ourselves sick about things we cannot control?Jay Livingston and Ray Evans might have had something when they wrote the popular song, Que sera sera.
     In no way am I suggesting we should just sit back and wait for Life to happen- that's called existing, not living. But we also shouldn't waste the Life we've been given stressing out. In that overwhelming moment where I realized that 4 major life events will be occurring at some point in the next 2 or so years I also realized I had just wasted several hours that I won't be able to get back. My present became my past in the blink of an eye, I had done nothing productive with it and I allowed it to happen. I should be thankful and excited at what is to come; I should be at peace at the realization that nothing is guaranteed and quite frankly, I may be stressing over events that may not even ever happen.
      I am making the suggestion that we be like children- to take things as they come,good or bad, ultimately knowing that it is up to our Father to handle it all. Our children live blissfully unaware (hopefully) of the bad things we deal with but heartily take part in  the good things we provide for them. They ask unafraid for what they want and need and hopefully remember to say "thank you" when it is received. They don't worry about what bills didn't get paid, where the next meal meal comes from or if they will have clothes to fit them next Fall. They just live. Maybe we should give this a try..for a day or 2 at first, maybe then a week...eventually it will just

Friday, September 16, 2011

A Request from Maria...


Hey everyone! I hope you are having a blessed day!
I just wanted to drop a quick little note and ask you all to please click my page Blessings. It has all my guest posts to some wonderfully blessed blogs, websites and ministries! Please visit these new friends and leave them some love and encouragement! God bless!

Oh, and by the way...if you ever are reading a post of mine and see words highlighted in green and underlined twice- DO NOT CLICK! This is a virus I'm having issues with- but my links will be highlighted in Yellow!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

No, I will NOT get Down with the Sickness.

     I heard the song "Getting Down with The Sickness" by Disturbed today at the gym. I've never been able to make out the words, but I knew that my husband used to love this band and he'd hum the chorus under his breath sometimes.
Dear God in Heaven....I praise you for forgiveness and the healing of hearts and your amazing ability to take a lost and wrecked life and transform it into such a new and beautiful thing.  
      I decided to look up the lyrics (WARNING: DO SO AT YOUR OWN RISK)and when I saw how graphic and horribly twisted and yes, disturbed, they were...I can't even believe this is now the same man who rocks our baby everyday for her nap singing This is the Air I Breathe. 2 years ago he unloaded his heart-full of guilt and shame and secret sins on me because he could no longer stand to live sick, and God bless him, he trusted me with his heart. My initial reaction (which lasted about 5 weeks) was not good, but a lot better than expected... but I think he'd agree it was the best decision he ever made and I am so proud of him.
This song and how my amazing husband was and who he is today and who I pray he will become got my mind going and thinking about sickness and disease and sin.
     I, like any other mother, hates when my kids get sick. Not just because my sleep gets robbed by extra sniffles and whininess, but because the invading germs change my kids' personalities. As their mommy, I know who each of them truly is, how they really are and what makes them tick- which is how I know when they are getting sick. My usually loud and hyper one gets very quiet and just lays around staring.My button pusher becomes ultra compliant. The clingy one becomes even worse- literally a new appendage for the length of the illness.And my goofball has 0 tolerance for anything she deems annoying. Even though there are good points at times ( like the extra quiet and compliance) it's just not the same when you know its a germ that is the driving force behind the good behavior, and not a true desire to please.
     I believe this may be how God views sin. He knows who we were truly meant to be, but when we allow ourselves to succumb to our flesh it's like picking up a germ that infects us and changes who we truly are. I can only imagine how it must have broken his heart the moment He, in all His awesome Omniscience realized that the only Creation He took time to mold with His soon-to-be nailed scarred hands had allowed sin to enter His perfect place and ruin everything. No longer would people be hopelessly in love with Him, or live to please Him because of that burning passion for Him. Now it would be because of fear of death,judgment and Hell. Ulterior motives.
     Man could no longer fully grasp the infinite love God has for us because He is our Father and our Alpha. He would now be seen as a Judge,Jury and Executioner. Some would even go so far as to defy his intolerance for evil by making the darkness trendy and then challenge His very existence because of his long suffering patience for us to come back to Him repentantly.
     I say the time for healing is now! We should no longer be content with the commonness of mediocrity or living deliberately sick and sinful lives. Who cares if giving it over to God is hard and scary? It can't be any harder or scarier than an eternity of separation from His Light!  It can't be any harder or scarier than having the skin whipped off your back and the slow suffocation of being nailed to a cross- because you have a Love for a People who you have not yet met- who may never fully understand why you are doing this for them...or who may never even care. Jesus wants to heal you from sickness....your sin....that thing(s) that is(are) choking out the growth and well being in you. Let Him do it- hand it over to Him; it just might be the BEST medicine you ever take.