Stop Building Towers

babel

Have you ever wondered why life is full of confusion? Confusion abounds with constant decisions, constant noise and frustration ensues, at least in my world. Once upon a time there was simpler world and it seems to me that it was just yesterday. Growing up in the hills of West Virginia was a blessing. I know that there are a lot of folks who poke fun at hillbillies and can’t possibly understand why anyone would want to live in such an economically depressed area with little opportunity but it’s the place I call home.

Now back to my point on confusion and all this will hopefully come together to bless you and I both with  a little reasoning from God this sunny Saturday morning in the hills.

Why is decision making so hard and so frequent. It seems that I just get out of one decision and I’m onto the next. And we’re not talking about breakfast… which I haven’t even got around to today and that’s a pretty important decision. But I’m talking about decisions that can have life altering effects. Career, money, health, kids, and that’s just the beginning. The spiritual side of life is a whole other realm and more important than those mentioned before. So why is there confusion?

In the beginning is a good place to start. I’ve been journaling through Genesis this week and yesterday happed upon the tower of Babel in Chapter 11. Three things caught my eye about why God confounded the builders and why we have confusion today.

Genesis 11:1-8

And the whole earth was of one language, and of one speech. And it came to pass, as they journeyed from the east, that they found a plain in the land of Shinar; and they dwelt there. And they said one to another, Go to, let us make brick, and burn them thoroughly. And they had brick for stone, and slime had they for morter. And they said, Go to, let us build us a city and a tower, whose top may reach unto heaven; and let us make us a name, lest we be scattered abroad upon the face of the whole earth. And the Lord came down to see the city and the tower, which the children of men builded. And the Lord said, Behold, the people is one, and they have all one language; and this they begin to do: and now nothing will be restrained from them, which they have imagined to do. Go to, let us go down, and there confound their language, that they may not understand one another’s speech. So the Lord scattered them abroad from thence upon the face of all the earth: and they left off to build the city.

  • Nobody asked God
  • They just started building.
  • And so life was scattered.

Sound familiar?

Prayer a priority? Sounds like such a foreign idea to most people. And while I pray over a candy bar (mostly asking God not to let the calories count), a major decision will occur and I’ll half heartedly ask God’s guidance, truthfully having made up my mind already. And then I wonder why I’m confused about life. If the tower builders had ask God His opinion He would have told them not to waste their time. But they didn’t. They wanted to see what they could accomplish for themselves and by themselves and for their glory. Nothing but bad can become of that combination.

I have to wonder what thoughts ran through their minds when they began to speak different languages. I’m sure it was somewhat like me talking with my grandsons Logan and Parker who are just beginning to form words and sentences. I’m pretty sure I know what they said, but answering yes could possible result in Izzie the Chihuahua taking a bath in the dishwasher.

God’s words are much clearer than the grandboys, but sometimes every bit as confusing. And I’m pretty sure I know why…

It’s called the flesh. I want to do and accomplish “stuff.” And if God doesn’t open an immediate door I call it confusion, rather than just sitting back and waiting to see if perhaps that door should remain closed. Maybe that tower didn’t need built, that song didn’t need written or sung and that venue didn’t need to happen.

My resent invitation to Minnesota to minister in music with my dear friend Dewey Moede happened much like that. I have a God box that my friend Sue Walker gave me at a retreat a few years ago. Inside that box are prayers that I know I have no control over. Meeting Dewey Moede is one. Another prayer on my heart is that God would open doors for me to sing. Voila! That’s my God. But a trip to Minnesota costs money… I have no money… I stopped working because God told me too. But a good friend of Dewey’s who became a good friend of mine listened to God and provided me the funds for transportation to Minnesota. That’s what happens when you wait on God.

That’s one of my success stories, I have far more failure tales. Stop building towers. Stay grounded in prayer.

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3 Step Strategy for Revival

revival

Every real revival in the church has been a child of prayer. There have been revivals without much preaching, there have been revivals with absolutely no organization, but there has never been a mighty revival without mighty praying. ~ R.A. Torrey

Last night was the last night of our spring revival, and I’d like to tell you that Heaven met on earth, souls were saved and the church as a whole got its heart right with God… but I can’t. It did fuel my desire, but my question for myself this morning is, “Okay Shari… how far will you go for revival.”

In a biography written by Os Hillman, he said of D.L. Moody:

Dwight L. Moody was a poorly educated, unordained, shoe salesman who felt God’s call to preach the gospel. Early one morning he and some friends gathered in a hay field for a season of prayer, confession, and consecration. His friend Henry Varley said, “The world has yet to see what God can do with and for and through and in a man who is fully and wholly consecrated to Him.” Moody was deeply moved by these words. ~ Os Hillman Biography

Consecrated… a nice bibley word… I know bibley is not a word, but it’s as much a word in my vocabulary as consecrated. Consecration (meaning wholly dedicated to God) doesn’t seem unattainable to me, it seems unlikely. There’s always something in my way, usually me. It’s the same reason I’m not the best musician, nor the best artist, mom, servant of God, or insert any of the dozens of other titles I have into here. I’m a sinner saved by grace, emphasis on sinner, and I’m semi-dedicated to everything I do. But I’m not wholly dedicated to anything and I’m especially not wholly consecrated to God else I’d be better and not feel like such a failure.

In my search for revival and my time in prayer prior to the revival last night I came up with three points to ponder and reflect on in the coming days in hopes that the sparks of revival that I witnessed in my favorite church on earth would ignite myself and my people.

CLEAN ME UP

Psalm 51:10

Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me.

I don’t have to guess at my sins, nor do you likely. I can get them right the first time. And so I confess them to God, but then I fall again, and again and again and the right spirit, the one who wants the revival fires to start burning feels as though I’ve just wet the wood. And then my mind is drawn into Elijah who told the prophets of Baal to wet the wood and wet it good and God sent down the fire to lick it up and ignite the offering to God. And suddenly, even in my failures I feel that twinge of hope and keep praying… clean me up Lord, send the fire, please.

BIND ME UP

Isaiah 30:26

Moreover the light of the moon shall be as the light of the sun, and the light of the sun shall be seven fold, as the light of the seven days, in the day that the Lord bindeth up the breach of his people and healeth the stroke of their wound.

What is the breach in my life, the area of the wall that allows doubt and confusion to get into my being? Another place to search and it’s a vast area. What am I doing that’s allowing the Devil into my life? I need to bind those areas up with the gospel keep my life Christ focused. What are those breached areas? Yeah, I guessed those the first time too. My life is spread too thin… I’m not focused, but rather trying to watch the scope of the world and what’s going on with everyone else and the breaches in my own wall are vulnerable…

FREE ME UP

2 Corinthians 3:17

Now the Lord is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.

Speaking those words “use me where you want me ” is indeed liberating, and also scary! It means that I have to let go of the reigns and possibly let go of some things in my life that kept me bound. This morning it has me pondering stepping out of a position that makes me nauseous every time I step into it and although that is liberating it’s also sad. Life’s not easy. But if revival did anything for me this week it caused me to realize I have people in my watch care that I’ve allowed the breaches in my own life to let the enemy into their lives too.

Are you spreading yourself too thin? Look up… He’ll help you.

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The Finest in Fellowship

fellowsI had no idea in 1996 when I kneeled at that altar of grace and ask Jesus to save my soul, what a package deal it was. Jesus not only became the best friend that I could ever have, He gave me a flock of friends that I didn’t even know! As I read Philippians 4 this morning, I identified with Paul from the standpoint that I long for the fellowship of His people, because they’re my people. I’m in awe sometimes when I realize the depth of friendships that are unexplainable. It’s not until I lose one, and realize the very deep hole in my life, that I understand the angst in Paul’s writing  in 2 Timothy 4:10 when he said “For Demas hath forsaken me, having loved this present world, and is departed unto Thessalonica;”  While he Philemon 1:24 he had written that Demas was a “fellowlabourer.”

Church fellows are special…

Fellowship defined is a group of people sharing and pursuing the same passion and interest.  I wouldn’t say that in any church everyone is in fellowship. There are those who attend church for reasons other than spiritual edification… I don’t get it, but I know it’s true. It’s my prayer that they will eventually get it. Until then I’ll continue to love and pray for them. But it’s not them that have my heart stirred this morning, it’s the church fellows. The ones I labor with and long for. They’re a special lot that only a child of God can have the privilege of knowing.

Fellowlabourer

The church worker. Society would call it “volunteerism,” God says it’s our job. We’re not left down here to take up valuable pew space, nor are we left here to be entertained by the Pastor. It’s not his job to spoon feed me my daily victuals of the Word of God, nor is it his job to take care of everyone in the church. It’s his job to train and lead folks how to serve God and to encourage them. He too is a fellowlabourer in Christ. He’s just got more responsibility and accountability.

Paul tells the people of Philippi in Philippians Chapter 1, many of whom he had no doubt won to the Lord, “Therefore, my brethren dearly beloved and longed for, my joy and crown, so stand fast in the Lord, my dearly beloved.” Stand fast! You’re jewels in my crown and you are loved! That’s how I feel about the people that I serve with in Victory Baptist Church, and those that the Lord has given me through other avenues of the faith. They bring such joy to my heart! I know that we are laboring for the same cause and I long for their fellowship. Even for those I’ve yet to meet face to face! That’s the unexplainable… that you know them because of the Spirit of God in them and in you.

Fellowprisoner

Paul, at the writing of the book of Philippians, was in prison and yet had joy. His joy was not likely contributed to his stellar living conditions, but rather to his stellar friends. Even in the worst of days the people of Victory Baptist Church and my other friends of faith bring joy to my life because they encourage me and they have a genuine burden for me when I have struggles in life. Paul’s friends weren’t Sunday saints. They were seven day a week, we’re in it to win it fellowprisoners with Paul. He may have been behind bars but they were behind him in prayer and provision. Glory to God! Is that not what we should be to one another? I’m blessed with that in my life…

Fellowservant

Paul’s friends weren’t perfect, they evidently had issues like we Baptists, else why would he say in verse 2 I beseech Euodias, and beseech Syntyche, that they be of the same mind in the Lord.” Evidently they’re minds had not always been the same, a division was there. And let me tell you who loves division… that’s Satan’s playground. He’ll play on that merry-go-round forever if he’s allowed. He’s on those monkeybars in my life right now. Division comes when people get their minds off the purpose of Christ which is to get people in a relationship with Him. So what if we have an opinion… was it Christ’s opinion? And did that opinion help you serve the Lord or did it hinder the service of the Lord because you were wrapped up in it? We’re not here to serve ourselves. I praise God for a church and pastor that preaches servitude in our community!

Church fellows are special people, not to be taken for granted. Paul mentioned by name those who he cared for… in verses three and four he laid the charge to his “true” yokefellows, those that believed as he did – And I intreat thee also, true yokefellow, help those women which laboured with me in the gospel, with Clement also, and with other my fellowlabourers, whose names are in the book of life. Rejoice in the Lord always: and again I say, Rejoice.

Although I love and live to serve every fellow in the church, that’s not what makes me rejoice. What makes me rejoice is when their name is written in the book of life, it’s written upon the hand of Jesus and then He inscribes their watch care to me and mine to them through the Holy Spirit. Paul’s people took care of him, take care of your people. They’re special…

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I hear His voice and I’m so glad!

shepherd in the storm

The past few weeks I’ve been off the grid as far as my blog posts are concerned because I was getting back in touch with the paper version of my Bible with a renewed excitement for the word of God and all because of a journaling bible, a pack of markers and a new box of colored pencils… Simple folks have simple ways, right?

I’m all about the digital version of the Bible! I love that I can read and search for scripture with the click of a button and within a second have the very word of God before my eyes. It’s amazing! But there was something about the paper version that I was missing. Nothing tops having the Holy Spirit in your heart, or having the word of God in your hand… Add to that markers and colored pencils and oh my stars! It’s like heaven came down. True story!

And so it was that I became an addict again to my Bible. Every spare second I could find I was reading the pages hoping to find an image rolling around in my mind to doodle on the pages of that precious book, bringing it even more to life and causing my mind to ponder…

David said it in Psalm 77 when he thought God had all but forgotten him… we get that way when we’re not reading and studying the word of God like we should. Listen to his words and see if they heaped conviction upon you as they did me:

10 And I said, This is my infirmity: but I will remember the years of the right hand of the most High. 11 I will remember the works of the Lord: surely I will remember thy wonders of old. 12 I will meditate also of all thy work, and talk of thy doings. 13 Thy way, O God, is in the sanctuary: who is so great a God as our God?

He essentially said, “This is my problem God. You are still awesome…”

I did this, I got away from the God, I allowed the world to come into my life and upset the balance. God didn’t move nor change. He’s still as awesome as He ever was. And so I began to remember the “right hand of the most High” who lead me to where I am today, and the many things that He has brought me through. As I doodled on the sides of those pages I meditated on the Words that caused the images to come into my mind… and God would bring me into the sanctuary of His presence. Who is so great a God as our God?

There is none so great as our God! The final verse in this chapter says that “Thou leddest thy people like a flock by the hand of Moses and Aaron.”  And it was there that this image came into my mind of the sheep being lead through the storm… I am that sheep… and God will bring me through because “He is forever, come what may, absolutely awesome.”

Did David’s words speak to your heart about your time with God? David not only meditated and thought on God’s word but he said that he then talked of what God had done. And I realized again that this wonderful platform that God gave me is a powerful thing and is meant to encourage the believer to keep going, to draw the sinner to Christ and soothe the soul of the hurting. It’s my job to paint the pictures of the Holy Spirit with words and share those with people so that they too might be encouraged in the same manner I am as I write them.

God is awesome… I needed to tell you that today. Even in the storms of life He’s leading His sheep… I hear His voice… and I am so glad…

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West Virginia Voting: Where Country Livin’ does a gal good

george

At last there is a reprieve from the political rhetoric, or so I thought. I was looking forward to a few days of no television ads or discument…. I know, it’s not word. It’s my version of what happens when you friendly argue about politics. Half discussion; half argument, and I am wholly tired of it all. I’ve seen too much political hype about why we vote like we do in West Virginia. Laying its reasoning to the cultural side of who we are. I’m fine with that. I’m proud of my Appalachian heritage and have never felt that I’ve missed out on life because I’ve not lived in the big city. But I’m most proud of my Christian heritage; which is why I vote the way I do… not because I’m a po’ little country gal who doesn’t understand the complexities of life, therefore I’m conservative. I’m not prejudiced, narrow minded nor am I misguided, and if you call me a radical that’s okay. So long as you understand that I’m radical about Jesus.

There are guns in our home, several. They’re for shooting deer, squirrel, and other critters that my husband enjoys calling fine cuisine. I call it disgusting… I’ve never been a fan of wild game. But my people are, and I’m okay with that. The guns are also handy to defend our home in case an idiot would decide that it would be a good idea to break in. It’s our right… at least for now.

I said all that to get to this. The part of my day that I love the most, and spend too little time in; is the time I take with the word of God. It’s where I know I can make sense of this world when the liberal jargon overwhelms my mind and has me questioning am I right or just weird? It’s why I vote the way I do and think the way I do.

Isaiah said it like this in Chapter 28:9

 Whom shall he teach knowledge? and whom shall he make to understand doctrine? them that are weaned from the milk, and drawn from the breasts.

Who shall we teach about life and train in the ministry? Not the babies, which the political world seems to have an overabundant supply of. They profess Christianity, and yet there behavior isn’t even in the ballpark. I’ve seen T-ball games with more maturity when understanding how to lose. Name calling, carelessness with the feelings of others, lying, and that’s just the precursor for bad behavior.  And we wonder why children behave the way they do! Those who scream against Christian morals and mock the foundation this country was founded on are not who we should have a problem with. They’re lost. And without Christ; we need not think they’ll have Christian principals. But what about our so called “Christian” leaders.  They have no concept of the accountability factor that God is going to hold His people to, and the role that their misguided thinking plays in the flailing condition of our Nation. Of course, that’s “if” they are His people. I’m not their judge.

Isaiah continued on… 28:10-12

For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little: For with stammering lips and another tongue will he speak to this people. To whom he said, This is the rest wherewith ye may cause the weary to rest; and this is the refreshing: yet they would not hear.

If I were to do a “state of the church” address for today, I’d say we’re in a state of unrest. Isaiah said much the same. Our country’s leadership isn’t helping to comfort the hearts of the people because they’re not following the word of God. Isaiah said the instructions for life were simple, precept (instruction) upon precept. Line upon line (just read it word for word without inserting our own version of what the scriptures say. Stop stammering on what God said! He meant it then and He means it now, God hasn’t changed.

Any psychologist worth a grain of salt will tell you that children need stability in order to feel safe. The only stability in the world for the child of God is the word of God and the church is messing that up by arguing over what God meant. It’s where country livin’ does a girl good. Because I’ve been brought up to believe and respect the simple and honest things of life. While people scoff at the culture of West Virginians, let me share a little about what makes it such special place to grow up in as a child and live in as an adult.

Homegrown West Virginians are very real. They talk and walk the way their grandfolks did and they generally think the way their grandfolks did. Some call it clannish… I call it family. They take care of one another, and other one another’s that don’t belong them.

Statistically speaking, West Virginia ranks 20th in church attendance (Gallup Poll 2014), with approximately one third of our state attending church. Not a statistic I’m proud of… I said they were good family people… I didn’t say they were saved. But even those who don’t go to church, don’t generally mind those who do, and have been brought up to respect the church goin’ folk. That’s the problem with America as a whole. I heard an old-timer once say of someone who forsook their Appalachian heritage “I think they got above their raise’n.”

Jeremiah, just like Isaiah, said pretty much the same thing in Jeremiah 6:16 ~ Thus saith the Lord, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls. But they said, We will not walk therein.

We won’t find rest in our nation until we get back to the foundation of the Word of God. It’s a fact.

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Is God a Journaler?

psalm 139Psalm 139

In the darkness of my room this morning, as the sun contemplating coming out from beneath the covers, I opened my Bible app on my phone and began to read in Psalm 139. Darkness messes with my mind… I start pondering things I shouldn’t ponder, my imagination takes me down dimly lit pathways where the future is uncertain. Silence is not always golden… praise God for technology that allows me to read in the dark!

He knows me

1O lord, thou hast searched me, and known me.

Not the “me” that my family and friends know, God knows me. The part that He created, and the parts that I messed up. God know that me, and yet He loves me. Yet, He desires to commune with me and I trail off down dark path…

Thou knowest my downsitting and mine uprising, thou understandest my thought afar off.

Thou compassest my path and my lying down, and art acquainted with all my ways.

As I lie in bed this morning and read those words I smiled. How awesome God, that in this dark hour, You know my ways. You know the concerns of my heart and the troubles that beset me and You understand! You walked this earth and defeated the foes that I fight, so why am I fighting them? Because it’s a dark time we live in, and I, more often than not, am content to lie in the darkness rather than turn on the light of the glorious gospel that expels the shadows. Silly me.

For there is not a word in my tongue, but, lo, O Lord, thou knowest it altogether.

Thou hast beset me behind and before, and laid thine hand upon me.

Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high, I cannot attain unto it.

Nobody knows me like God, and in spite of it He laid His hand upon me and anointed me with purpose and so I understand the Psalmist when he says “Such knowledge is too wonderful.” I know that I do not deserve the blessings that God has poured upon and through me and allowed me to work in the ministry of the Lord, the very thing that I desired in my heart but feared because it was a path I could not see down. Oh, great God… “I” cannot attain to it; but through Christ Who strengthens me, I can do all things! So it says in Philippians 4:13.

He Is With Me

Whither shall I go from thy spirit? or whither shall I flee from thy presence?

If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there: if I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there.

If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea;

10 Even there shall thy hand lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me.

11 If I say, Surely the darkness shall cover me; even the night shall be light about me.

12 Yea, the darkness hideth not from thee; but the night shineth as the day: the darkness and the light are both alike to thee.

Loneliness, like the darkness, can have me feeling lost. I’m my own best friend and worst enemy all packed into one. But God knows that. There are times when the Holy Spirit of God is pushed and pushed and pushed into the recesses of my mind so that I can spend more time with me; the good, the bad, and the ugly me. But He patiently waits for me to tire of my company. It’s usually about the time that I fall to Satan’s lies that “nobody really cares about your problems, Shari, they’ve got plenty of their own,” when I feel God nudge me and say… “I’ve never left you. I’ve always cared.”

He Leads Me

I don’t know how I got into Psalm 139 this morning. I hadn’t been reading there… but it was a path that God laid out, just as He has my life.

13 For thou hast possessed my reins: thou hast covered me in my mother’s womb.

14 I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well.

Oh wait… I do remember how I got to Psalm 139! I was scoping out a bible journaler on Instagram and a verse from 139 was there. Her thoughts were not mine. God had an entirely different plan for her, another path. But it was wonderfully made like mine.

He Writes of Me

15 My substance was not hid from thee, when I was made in secret, and curiously wrought in the lowest parts of the earth.

16 Thine eyes did see my substance, yet being unperfect; and in thy book all my members were written, which in continuance were fashioned, when as yet there was none of them.

17 How precious also are thy thoughts unto me, O God! how great is the sum of them!

18 If I should count them, they are more in number than the sand: when I awake, I am still with thee.

I love to write. And what sweet words those were to my heart to see that God is a Journaler too! I have to wonder if on the pages of His book, in living color, is not an image of me. The word says that “all my members were written.” That sounds like pictures to me! That may or may not be stretchin’ it, but this is my blog and my thoughts… and that’s the way it went.

Search Me, O God

19 Surely thou wilt slay the wicked, O God: depart from me therefore, ye bloody men.

20 For they speak against thee wickedly, and thine enemies take thy name in vain.

21 Do not I hate them, O Lord, that hate thee? and am not I grieved with those that rise up against thee?

22 I hate them with perfect hatred: I count them mine enemies.

23 Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts:

24 And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.

On this Election Day 2016, there has been much blaspheming of the Lord’s name. It angers me and causes me to want to travel down a dark path with a ball bat… just sayin’. I’m not violent. I hate that too, but when I think about the destruction on this world by words, my flesh rises and I want retribution for my Lord. But it’s not my fight. He won that won too. So for today, at least for this minute… I ask the Lord to search me. Those are the thoughts that I have control over.

Heaven help our nation… please.

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While Seeking the Wisdom of God

woman of wisdom

Wisdom. Oh, I desire it… and then I don’t. Sometimes there’s something to be said about the simple ways of folks like me who just want to live out the Word of God and leave the brains to doctors and lawyers and such. Simple people have simple ways as an old friend of mine use to say. And while that’s true; the wisdom of God is not to be ignored. It’s not the same as the wisdom of man… although some men/women think they’ve got the wisdom of God. But the wisdom of God is far deeper and more exhaustive than mortal man can explore, which is what makes it a worthy pursuit! Even for simple folks like me.

Text: PROVERBS 4:7-13

Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding.

Wisdom is the principal thing! As a child we need wisdom to understand that a stove is hot and mittens protect our fingers from the cold, else we’ll be burnt or frost bitten. But it’s not knowledge that we’re born with, it’s learned via instruction or unfortunate deduction. I’ve lived by both, the latter was my greater teacher. So when I came across this verse this morning while scoping out other bible journaling artists, it pricked my heart. “You should be living wiser,” I heard the Holy Spirit say. “Life will be better… living by the seat of your pants is not always faith, sometimes it’s stupidity, it’s a fine line for you… walk carefully.”

“True story,” I thought.

And so I set out to find the woman of wisdom that God desires me to be. And for a little while I set to draw the woman of wisdom with a crown of glory and an ornament of grace. She’s pretty… and so far from where I feel that I am today.

She shall give to thine head an ornament of grace: a crown of glory shall she deliver to thee.

I want that crown and that bling of grace… and so I search for her. I believe the woman of wisdom is far more complex than I could define in one blog, so for brevity for you and I, and to give us something to chew on today I’ve narrowed it to a three point outline in our search today:

Pure Wisdom

A woman of God should desire the wisdom of God, not man. James 3:17 says But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be intreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy.

The wisdom of God is first pure, untainted by the wisdom of men. Look at what “pure” wisdom seeks: peace, gentleness, good fruit, no partiality or hypocrisy. For certain it’s not of man! How much sweeter our day will be when we seek that pure wisdom of God when our time is requested, our temper is short, and out tasks are many! Sweeter than ® Nestle Toll House cookies I just took from the oven! Much sweeter…. I burnt them!

Plentiful Wisdom

James 1:5 tells us that If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.

There is no shortage of wisdom, but merely a shortage of conversation. We have not because we ask not. Time is a precious commodity, I’m pretty sure we’d all agree. How much of it do we waste because we neglect to begin each day with the wisdom of God.

Before I had sat my feet on the floor this morning, Satan had entered my bedroom and my mind and there was a spirit of fear and frustration that ran through my joints and marrow that caused my body to groan and crawl back beneath the warmth of the covers and away from the reality of the world. That’s not wise living, that’s defeated living and it is us living far beneath our means because God has an abundant supply of wisdom for the frustrations of life, no matter how bad!

My third and final though for the day in the wisdom that a woman of God should seek out is

Prudent Wisdom

Ephesians 1:8 – Wherein he hath abounded toward us in all wisdom and prudence;

God has thrived and prospered toward us if we in prudence (caution) seek His wisdom. Satan is the great deceiver and imitator. It makes his day to fool a child of God by creating a spirit of confusion when it comes to the decisions of life, ruining the fruitful life that God has planned. This is where Satan has won many small victories in my life. Shiny things and fun times catch my attention and oftentimes draw me away from God’s planned strategies of life. I long for a career in this mission field called life. And I earnestly want God’s design for that, but my attention span is so short, and my eye so easily drawn away because I don’t proceed with caution.

Remember that conversation with the Holy Spirit this morning.

-living by the seat of your pants is not always faith, sometimes it’s stupidity, it’s a fine line for you… walk carefully.”

God knew how this blog would end. I did not. But it certainly came full circle didn’t it? Proceed with caution friends! Seek the pure wisdom of God, it is plentiful!

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Are you living life like the Bull in the China Shop?

china shop living

On most days of the week, I’m a brat. I want life my way and I want it now. I have no patience to wait and my discipline is such that if I were my own child, I’d beat me. I’m as scattered as the chaff that flies in the wind so often spoken of in the scripture and every bit as accomplished with bits and pieces of me flying here, there and everywhere and seldom gathering into once location for a finished product with purpose.

Even this morning my mind is a dozen different places. Some literal places and some spiritual places, and I’m trying my best to rein in my thoughts but I declare they’re like a bucking bronco! And then I read Psalm 119:59… and took the bull by the horns. Well, almost… until I got sidetracked looking for bull images. Whose mind works like that!

I thought on my ways, and turned my feet unto thy testimonies. Psalm 119:59

My ways are like a bull in a china shop… I want to turn my feet into a testimony for God. One that shouts of Him and whispers of me.

My Thoughts

What’s wrong with my thoughts? Well, most of the time they’re in the flesh! It’s hard to stay focused on spiritual matters while living in this world. We make mistakes, people hurt us, Satan plots and we provide him with an avenue into our minds like a super highway.

The psalmist said in Psalm 94:11~ The Lord knoweth the thoughts of man, that they are vanity.­~ It’s all about us is it not? What we want, what we need. To get where God needs us to be we’ve got to hate what God hates, and love what God loves.

Psalm 119:113 says it like this ~ I hate vain thoughts: but thy law do I love.~ To get away from the vanity, and guilt causing thoughts of our minds, we have to get into the word of God.

My Understanding

Understanding is the comprehension and acceptance of the truth. When is the last time you’ve gotten “real” with yourself? Really examined your life and the direction that God desires you to move in. Not necessarily career wise, but life in general. What to eat, wear, listen to, etc. The very things that make up our day. Do we have a full understanding of what effect those day to day decisions, regardless of how miniscule, have on our life? If I strove to understand God’s desires for everything in my life… I’m pretty sure they’d be some serious changing necessary. David said in Psalm 119:99 ~ I have more understanding than all my teachers: for thy testimonies are my meditation.~

David mediated on what God was doing and what God had done. It’s not about us.

My Reasoning

If we’re not careful, reasoning becomes religious. It’s about the things of life as the world sees them, not the way God sees them. Faith doesn’t always makes sense.

Mark 2:5-7

When Jesus saw their faith, he said unto the sick of the palsy, Son, thy sins be forgiven thee. But there was certain of the scribes sitting there, and reasoning in their hearts, Why doth this man thus speak blasphemies? who can forgive sins but God only?

When life happens we view it this side of Heaven; we often times do not see what’s going on in the spiritual realm. When Jesus healed the man sick of palsy, and forgave his sins, He did so because of the man’s faith, not because of his reasoning. It was a two for one sale that day! There was no reasoning in the four men who tore off the roof of the house to get their friend to Jesus, it was faith! And when the religious realm heard the words of the Lord they reasoned with in themselves, “How could this man forgive sin?” It didn’t make any sense in their religious world because they had no relationship with God.

My Needs

I have needs, but I more often than not get them confused with my wants, and they are many. I’m working with a young man who’s greatest desire is to come to the United States to study the scripture. His name is Juma and he lives in Tanzania. He works hard and he has needs that I’ve never had to comprehend, because I’m that spoiled brat that wants everything now.

These words of David pierce my heart this morning…

Psalm 119:134

Deliver me from the oppression of man: so will I keep thy precepts.

David was being oppressed by others, I however oppress myself, when I don’t spend enough time in the Word of God and live my life for Him, not me. It’s like that bull in a china shop, knocking over all the delicacies of life just to get through. That is how I often live life… just pushing my way through to the next thing, never stopping to savor what God is doing along life’s way.

David said in my original text 119:59 that he turned his feet unto God’s testimonies. Take note that my points spell out God’s message today. T.U.R.N.

What direction are you going? Your way, or God’s?

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