Walking Your Path and Duck Dynasty’s Phil Robertson

Sometimes you HAVE to stand for what you believe  . . . I’ve personally experienced this with my blog. Some people will be cruel and unjust about what you have to say concerning lifestyles and actions you disagree with, but sin is sin. White-washing, calling it another name, not talking about sin, and denying it, does not make it alright.  Wrong doing will always be just that, wrong, in spite of our efforts to make it appear differently.

Phil Robertson, the star of A & E  television channel’s “Duck Dynasty” has been the most publicly criticized example of someone being attacked and punished for speaking out about what he believes is sin.  This is Phil’s right of free speech according to our Constitution.  A right for which millions of military veterans have died to protect and defend. Mr. Robertson is a veteran and was removed from his family’s hit TV show for stating in an interview with GQ magazine what he thought about the homosexual lifestyle.

He called it sin and was immediately censored and removed from his “Duck Dynasty” show for stating beliefs that too many people consider “politically incorrect” and discriminating.  Now, it’s popular for people to discriminate against Christians, or “believers”, as I like to call us. It appears good is bad and bad is good.  John 3:19 (NKJV)  “And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness instead of light, because their deeds were evil.”

People deceived by their spiritual darkness want others to accept their sin and if possible, be punished for speaking out against it.  It’s labeled “hate”, not the wrong for which it is.  Like the abortion business, get people to believe it’s a woman’s right, a choice, so we can keep killing innocent children and making money.

On December 25, people around the world celebrated the birth of Christ, the Light of the world, but we must remember what His purpose was for coming to earth. He was born to die. The son of the living God was born to die for sinners, and then live again, defeating darkness once and for all and the spiritual death sin brings.  How can we not choose the path to believe Christ’s message and share what Jesus died for, so that we may have forgiveness, and live with Him forever?  Jesus loves each of us so much. “For ALL have sinned and come short of the glory of God.” Romans 3:23 (NIV)  All people, not just those who we disagree with or the ones who disagree with us. Everyone!

Mr. Robertson, you have chosen your path, and I walk mine with you.  Christ’s blessings be on you and your entire family. May God’s divine purpose for you continue and be accomplished in your lifetime.

God’s blessing to you at this very special time of year!

Donna

 

Prayer For An Upside Down Heart

Neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.  Romans 8:39

Nothing can separate us from the love of Christ.  Nothing.  Then, why do I feel broken?  When I neglect my time alone with Father God, I allow anxiety, fear and the cares of this world to invade my heart, and if I don’t rebuke the evil one’s lies and replace them with God’s word about His love for me, His blessings and His care, I wind up in a mess.  Stirred up, angry, resentful and anxiety ridden.

I need alone time, but I go to bed and hope it passes.  It doesn’t.  I wake up.  It’s 2:00 in the morning.

“Father God,” I speak into my pillow. “I just want to sit at your feet.  I don’t want to ask for Your help again because you’ve done that so many times, helped me, blessed me.”

“Yet, You tell me to ask because You love me so much.  But, I think what’s going on in my upside down heart can be handled by resting in You.  I listen and wait, but the noise in my head is so loud it shuts out everything else, and the harder I try, the more the silence crowds me.”

I toss and turn.  My sheets tangle around my feet and I stare blankly at the ceiling, hoping this time will be a night You show me Your face, Father God, Your plans for me and for the people whose lives you’ve planned for my life to touch with Your love and grace. I cringe at the last thought.  In this state, how can I help anyone?

Quiet’s cymbals crash in my ears, and I sense my breathing quicken.  I put my hands on my chest, attempting to slow it’s rise and fall, to calm myself so I can sense the Holy Spirit’s quiet whisper.  “I know I’m not,” I speak into the dark. “But tonight . . . I feel lost.  I know Your Spirit lives inside me, so I can’t be without You no matter what I feel.”  That last thought signals my faith to rise.  I feel safe, and stop thrashing.

“So,” I whisper, “Help me, Lord, I love You.  Forgive me for allowing lies and fear to sit on Your throne in my heart instead of faith. I just want to be with You, now.”

I praise Him for His majesty and holiness.  Tears roll down my cheeks and puddle in my ears. “Thank you for loving me and holding me in the palm of Your hand and in Your unwavering heart.  You made me, You know all my days from the beginning of time.  You have a plan for me. Your constant faithfulness woos me.  Your strength carries me.”

The peaceful transition I long for begins.  I learned a long time ago about what the “deer panting for water” means.  As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, my God.  Psalms 42:1

Only the Father will satisfy my thirst.  Peace floods me and washes over me in waves, and after some time praying in the Spirit, I feel the weighty pressure of His presence. It’s like my body is being gently pushed down on the mattress and my breathing slows.  Every part of me noticeably, physically relaxes.  The calm is amazing. Nothing can come to me that He doesn’t allow and I remember again His mercy. Literally, I don’t want to move because I don’t want to ruin the heavy beauty of the moment.  I wait for His voice, or for Him to show me a picture or give me a scripture.  I inhale the thick peace cocooning me.

It’s wonderful.  Every time is like the first time I felt the weightiness of Him here with me.  I long for this, His presence, and He doesn’t disappoint.

Everything I brooded over fades away. It’s just God and me.

I wait in quietness.  He loves me back to sanity and peace, forgiving me for not taking my thoughts captive to Jesus Christ which is how I ended up in the chaos of “what ifs”.

God created each of us to have an intimate relationship with Him.  He wants us.  Make a place in your heart for Him to dwell.

Can God find a resting place in you?  I hope so.

Amen . . .

Donna

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Walk In The Light In Front Of You

During my work week, I spend lunch times reading, praying, listening to my favorite music, or to the radio.  Today as I flipped through the stations, I heard a minister say, “You know those old lanterns didn’t cast much light.”  I remained on that particular station and listened to a few more minutes of his story.  He said when he was very young, he would follow his dad down a road in the countryside that didn’t yet have electricity in that area.  His father held an old lantern in front of them to see where to walk, and as long as he followed his dad, he was safe, and didn’t get lost.  The lantern only shined light at their feet, and did not show them the road beyond.  They had no idea what lay ahead.  Was there a ditch, a bend in the road, a washout, an animal or snake?  They could only see far enough to walk the path right in front of them.

I changed stations to catch some music, but couldn’t put the minister’s lantern comment out of my mind.  The Holy Spirit nudged my heart and said, “That’s how the Father leads you most of the time.  His light to guide your life path, but always wanting you to stay close to Him for safety and direction, and when you do, you make it to the destination He’s leading you to.”

Wow, how many times in my life has that been the case?  Almost every day!  God lights our path with his word, during prayer as we ask for guidance or help, the Holy Spirit speaks to us if we keep our heart towards the Father.  Sometimes, He lights our path through people and circumstances, through pain and joy.  These are just a few of the things that come to mind.  He may use nature-His creation, or a song, artwork, a book, but something illuminates right in front of us.  I love that about God, when my light bulb comes on and I say,” O.K., I see what you’re doing, now.”

I believe God gives us dreams and prophetic words to help guide us, but usually, it’s the constant truth of His word, prayer and the voice of the Holy Spirit. 

I wish He’d say, “In six months, this particular thing is going to happen, so get ready, or, next year you’ll be at a different job and there will be a new child in your life.”  We think that would be good, if God just audibly told us our future; but we would worry, try to manipulate details and avoid doing other things He wants us to do.  Being human, we’d probably mess it up.  He knows our frailties, and He wants us to get to know Him.  We can only do that by spending time with Him, talking, worshiping and LISTENING.  So, for our good, Father God knows to shine light on the path just at our feet, and trust Him enough to follow along behind to the destiny His great love has provided for us. 

Besides, how many people would hear God if He wanted to give you His long-term plans for your life?  I’m sorry to say, not very many.  Being able to hear the voice of the Holy Spirit takes a personal decision to make Jesus Christ your Lord and Savior. Even after that, it takes time to recognize His voice, which is usually “still and small”.  You need a repentant heart, and the genuine desire to seek God’s face and get to know Him.  It’s something I seek in my life.  I ebb and flow.  I feel close and far away, but I know His Spirit lives inside me, guiding me, loving me, and like a good parent, chastising me when necessary.  Unconditional love.  

So, when something happens in your life you don’t understand, or when you make choices you wish you could reverse, or choices you shouldn’t have made, He’s there, moving the lantern, saying,”It’s alright.  I’m here.  Follow My light. I love you, and if you’ll ask, I’ll forgive and cleanse you.  Don’t be afraid.  I have a plan.  I KNOW THE ROAD AND I’LL LEAD YOU IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION.”

Donna

Tears Soften Your Heart

The hectic lifestyles we lead make it difficult to support healthy relationships.  Often, we give everything to our jobs, meetings, churches, volunteering, hobbies, our children’s activities.  Being everything to everyone.  We arrive home exhausted, just wanting some space and down time, and we’ll do almost anything, to, just for a moment, disconnect.  We head for the television, computer, music, exercise, food, alcohol or whatever we use to comfort ourselves.

Doing, becomes a way of life and taking time to sit alone in the quiet with our thoughts, hopes, dreams and fears can be a frightening destination.  So, most of us file away the idea of stillness for another day, and go on with life as usual.

Unfortunately, we cheat ourselves from experiencing a wonderful part of our life, and from developing and nourishing the most important relationship of our existence.  Knowing God and His heart for us.

God created us to have an intimate relationship with Him.  How do you create intimacy with your spouse?  By spending time alone together talking, asking questions, learning about what each of you want in life, sharing your hopes, dreams, your dark moments and seeing how that person responds towards you about them.  Sometimes you simply sit in the silence, drawing strength from just being together and the love you have for each other.  You can’t wait to be together, and making the other person happy is most important.

That’s the same relationship God wants to have with you, and it can only happen by spending time alone with Him in the quiet.

With God, the difference is, He already knows everything about us, and that fact alone can keep us from seeking Him out.  His great love for us woos and calls us to His side where He longs to show and tell you what He knows about you, loving us enough to forgive the bad when we ask Him, and share with you how He sees us through Christ Jesus.  We are His marvelous creation, each  unique and made for a destiny all our own.  God wants us to return His love, freely given, freely expressed.  He wants us to ask about His heart.  What does He want from us, what will He share about Himself with us.  It’s a relationship that takes our time and effort because it’s so worth having.

He promises to never leave or forsake us.  He waits patiently for us to talk to Him, to share our hearts and shed our tears, tears of joy, tears of pain.  Tears He gave us to keep our hearts soft and pliable.  When your heart is hard towards a person, there is no intimate relationship.  Take time for the quiet everyday. Give God a part of the day we give so much of to others.

Matthew 7:7 tells us if we seek Him we will find Him.  Even our seeking is His idea; that’s how much He loves us.

Donna

 

 

Reconciliation Prayer

A few years ago I wrote a prayer for reconciling my heart with my son.  I’ve prayed it often about other people and circumstances, but mostly in regard to my attitude.  Time has brought the gift of wisdom in a few areas at least, and when the Holy Spirit reminds me to first remove the log from my eye so I can pray for others about the speck in theirs, I hasten to do so.

If you’ve read my posts, you know I have two children who are adopted.  I am their mother in every sense of that word and that includes the stresses, tensions and disappointments experienced by both the parent and the child.  My children bring me great joy and love, but we are human beings, and with that, we get the flaws and the pain as well.  Here is my prayer.  Use it as a guide to help in your life and parenting experience.

Reconcile my son to me.  Reconcile me to my son.  Cleanse us both and set us free from me verses him and him verses me.
Lord Jesus, dig up the lies from our hearts and expose them to the light of your truth.  Purge us, renew our minds and our hearts.
Cover us with your blood sacrifice.
Create in me a clean heart.  Give me yours.  Forgive us, both.  Protect us.
In your mercy, restore the time lost with joyful expectation.  Replace old memories of both our disappointments with fresh hope in you, Jesus.  Give us joy, belief, faith, certainty and the freshness of your Holy Spirit.
Grant us the restorative power of Your love.
Thank you for making us a family.  Help us always to remember how much we love each other.
Let it be this day as you led me to pray.  Amen!”
Donna

 

 

God’s Promises Are Yes & Amen!

Father God, You teach me what is good for me and lead me along the path that I should follow.

If I listen to and obey your commands, then peace overshadows me and flows through me like a gentle river and righteousness rolls over me like waves in the sea.

You have written my name on the palm of your hand. Those who trust in you will never be put to shame.

Contend with those who contend with me.  You are for me and nothing can stand against me.

Expose areas in my life that need Your healing and restoration.

Your promises are yes and amen!

You are God, You do not change.  Even my love for you is because You loved me first.

I long for You because You long for me.  I desire to know You because You woo me.

Nothing of me.  All is You.

You breathed on me and in me.  You spoke my destiny over me as a promise You cannot break.

You placed the seeker voice in my heart to find my purpose, to find You.  I finally see your promises and You are the same.

I try to let go, forget the past, knowing I’m blessed by Your mercy and steadfast love.

Accelerate Your Holy Spirit’s work in me to catch up with where You want me now!  Breathe on me again. Let You winds blow over me shrouding me in Your smoke, Your fire, the heady essence of You, God.

Your word is alive for the present.  The past is here for the present.  You are Your word and Your word is You.  I will peel away the layers, to see You.

Change me permanently.  Change me on the inside, where You live in me.

I love You Father.  Thank You for loving me first.

Donna

 

All God’s Creation Is Good

Last weekend my husband and I spent three days in Colorado driving the highways and mountain passes bathed in aspen gold and orange.  Each bend in the narrow roads lured us on with the promise of the next stunning vista ahead, and we were not disappointed.

Some of the local residents told us the views were the best they’d seen in thirty years.  We stopped at any pull-off area we could to take photos.  My husband is quite artistic and has a good eye for setting up the frame to capture the best picture.  We have numerous examples of his talent to remind us of this, and past trips.

I share this with you because, at many of these photo-taking stops, I stood beside the car or walked to the road’s edge and found myself telling God how awesome His creation is.  Praise erupted from my heart and tumbled out my mouth in gratitude for the beauty and for opportunity He gave us to view it.  I had some pain issues during the trip and was not physically doing the best, but even that could not restrain my enthusiasm or love of the magnificent scenery.

 Genesis 1:31 Amplified Bible (AMP)    And God saw everything that He had made, and behold, it was very good (suitable, pleasant) and He approved it completely.

God made us.  His creation is good, very good and when we live in right relationship with Him, we accomplish what He created us for in every area of our lives.  That however, is the key.  Living in right relationship with God.  Which means we have to get to know Him as a friend and a father.  You can only do that by spending time with Him in prayer, praising, asking questions, being still, listening to His heart and then, going about your life based on the things you learned from sitting at His feet.

I get myself in trouble every time I neglect this most important area of my life.

In my post, Adoption-An Answer for the Pain, I shared with you the devastating loss of my first child through miscarriage after eight endless years of infertility.  I suffered a miscarriage again, later in my life. During each of these life crises, I tore myself apart by believing lies I told myself, that I was useless, and a failure as a woman.  While battling the infertility and dealing with the first miscarriage, I negatively questioned, begged and finally railed against God for His seeming non-caring of my life issues.  In reality, nothing was further from the truth, and after some healing time had passed; He opened the door to adoption and now I have two children and two grandchildren!

I got my self into this self-pity arena by not spending time with God as His child and my Father.  Sharing intimacy with someone is not time filled with blaming and anger. God patiently waited for me to heal, all the time aiding my recovery by the power of the Holy Spirit, and I did’nt even know it was happening. He loved me then, and He loves me now.  Just like He loves you.  We are His creation, His children, and He loves us with a good Father’s heart.

If you’re telling yourself you’re worthless, useless, a failure, or that God has abandoned you, those are lies from the enemy, (satan).  Recognize them as lies and do not receive those falsehoods into your spirit.  When you spend large amounts of time with someone, you pick up their traits and mannerisms and incorporate them into your own life.  I want that from God.  Not only for Him to abide in me, but for me to live in Him, become like Him.  So, when you hear those lies in your head.  Rise up!  Say NO! Your are God’s creation, His child and He loves you.

It’s a journey.  A path we’ll travel our whole lives.  Sometimes, we’ll step off the path, get back on, make some wrong turns and perhaps, even turn around and walk back before we right ourselves again.

Donna

John 3:16

New International Reader’s Version (NIRV)  “God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son. Anyone who believes in him will not die but will have eternal life.