Tag Archives: Answers

Just Keep Going

I have a tendency to be a little over the top. And if you know me you likely just rolled your eyes and said “A little?” To that I say “Shush.” I’m not likely to change. There’s a reason I’m over the top. I have had enough dead religion to last me a lifetime. If you’re not a shouter… I’m okay with that. If you don’t like to lift your hands, I’m okay with that too. I just happen to be both, and I love being with likeminded people. And to that God has always been so faithful to place them in my midst. But occasionally I meet a Hoover. I try to stay clear of them-, but deed, sometimes it’s impossible. That illustration came from a sermon I heard David Gibbs preach last week. I haven’t been able to shake it, and it makes me giggle! And then it makes me nauseous. I just have to tell myself “Just keep going, Shari.”

Ephesians 4:29 reminds us not to be a Hoover –  Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.

And it’s on days like that that I turn to the Word. I’m not above being wrong. I want to back up what I believe with the Word of God.       So should you! Don’t take man’s word for anything. Humanity leaves room for error.

We Have Assurance

Ephesians 3: 9-12 – And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God, who created all things by Jesus Christ: To the intent that now unto the principalities and powers in heavenly places might be known by the church the manifold wisdom of God, According to the eternal purpose which he purposed in Christ Jesus our Lord: In whom we have boldness and access with confidence by the faith of him.

We should be bold with confidence, not dead with insecurity or religion. Religion says “Don’t make waves.” Confidence says “Stir up the water!” We have the wisdom that man has searched for from the beginning of time. We have the power from Heavenly places that the world tries to imitate. What we have is the real deal. Why would we not be excited!

We Have Approval

1 John 2:28 – And now, little children, abide in him; that, when he shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before him at his coming.

I highly doubt that when Jesus splits open the skies and calls His church home, we’ll be indifferent. Glory to God! We have confidence that He’s returning but do we have His approval on how we’re waiting? If He would walk into your church on Sunday morning, would He even feel welcome? If He sat behind you in the pew would He find you paying attention to the message or surfing your messages on your phone? If the Spirit started moving in your heart would you raise your hand or would you raise an eyebrow at those who do? If someone shouted would it be you, or would you jump out of your skin because you weren’t prepared for anyone to get excited. If Heaven forbid someone choo choo’d around the church would you call it fake or would you fall in behind? If I have to explain choo choo, you may not get any of this paragraph.

I am confident that God’s okay with excited Christianity.

We Have Answers

Because the world would love to make me think I’m crazy for being so excited about Jesus, and because there are days I feel crazy. I am elated that I have a solid foundation in the Word of God to turn to.

1 John 5:14 – And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us:

And so I ask. Again and again I ask. Every time some Hoover Christian leads me to believe I’m wrong.

Psalm 98:4 – Make a joyful noise unto the LORD, all the earth: make a loud noise and rejoice, and sing praise.

Psalm 47:1 – O clap your hands, all ye people; shout unto God with the voice of triumph.

Luke 17:15And one of them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back, and with a loud voice glorified God,

Psalm 134:2Lift up your hands in the sanctuary, and bless the Lord.

Need I go on? The world is so stinkin’ loud. How can they possibly hear the whispers of a child of God. When we listen to God, we should be still. When we feel God move, it should move us.

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This blog is in it’s 8th year. Hosted on godaddy.com for the past five. Expenses incurred for the operation of this site are without complaint and with gratitude for the opportunity. If the Lord would impress you to give to help cover some recent technology issues, I’d be grateful. I’ve not been in the world’s workforce for 3 years and for that I glorify God. It’s given me the opportunity to not only write and work on music, but minister to nursing home patients, volunteer in the Christian School teaching art and help other ministries with marketing. All of which require technology, communication, time and gasoline. Again it’s without complainT… but just in case you have a desire to help, or have “extra money” 🙂 Know that I would be eternally grateful.

Here’s the Link

The Invisible Jesus

chick invisible

Someone becoming aware that I’m “The Jesus Chick” usually brings three typical reactions:

  1. Joy from fellow believers (I love that!)
  2. Rolled eyes from people who believe I’m a fanatic
  3. Changed conversation from those who don’t want to talk about Jesus

I’m okay with all three because it doesn’t change who I am, and it certainly doesn’t change who Jesus is! It also doesn’t change the truth; which is what everyone says they want, and yet they really don’t. In John 8 we find the story of the woman caught in adultery, and the religious sect that wanted to stone her. But when Jesus challenged them with the truth “…and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her,” (vs. 7) We find the world walking out. They knew the truth… we all sin!  We just don’t like to name it.  I always wondered if what Jesus “wrote with His finger on the ground” was their sins. Jesus knew them too. Conviction is a powerful tool of the Lord. That’s why when people hear the truth their reaction is much the same as the typical reactions to me. They love it, ignore it or change the conversation!

What I found interesting in John 8 this morning were verses, like so many others, that I have previously just skimmed over.

John 8:58-59

Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am. Then took they up stones to cast at him: but Jesus hid himself, and went out of the temple, going through the midst of them, and so passed by.

Convicted by Jesus’ words the religious sect picked up stones to kill Him. But it wasn’t His time. So Jesus hid Himself. Literally vanished from their sight. But an invisible Jesus didn’t change the truth, whether or not they wanted to hear it they were still held captive.

In verse 32 Jesus said, “And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” On the counter side of that, if you ignore the truth you’re willingly being held captive by a lie.

The Invisible Jesus. He’ll eventually stop revealing the truth to you, and salvation will be further and further away; just where you thought you wanted it. And Jesus will have “passed by.”  The two saddest words ever.

Failing to acknowledge Jesus may make Him invisible, but it doesn’t mean He doesn’t exist. And what you’ve allowed to pass by is what you know you’re looking for and why I love being a Jesus Chick:

  • Peace (regardless of circumstance)
  • Love (when nobody’s around to love on you)
  • Healing (even of a broken heart)
  • Answers (to every question)
  • Solutions (to every problem)
  • Insight (to the mysteries of God)
  • Oh the list is endless…

Do you see Him?   He’s precious… and so  worthy of following.

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When the laughter stops… the launching point

Robin Williams Tickets

My heart was broken for Robin Williams last night when I heard the news of his suicide. A man known for making us laugh, a comedic genius and yet couldn’t pull himself out of sadness. Suicide is no respecter of persons, be they rich or poor, young or old, elite or unknown. It’s a selfish death, in that those who love you are left to morn and self-blame and the very pain you wanted to stop you’ve now inflicted on those you loved. For the Christians there is always the question, “Were they saved?” And then there are those who callously comment that they couldn’t have been. I disagree.

Depression (for which I occasionally inwardly battle) and mental illness are not Band-Aid-able nor can you always medicate them away, although that sometimes works. It’s taken much too lightly by many who think it’s something you can just “get over” or it’s triggered by something else. I have no profound answers for anyone seeking a solution to understanding the why’s of suicide, I have only this…

If you contemplate suicide – Seek Christ

If you care take the suicidal – Seek Christ

If you are confused as to why it happened – Seek Christ

No that’s not all there is…that’s just a launching point. He has to take over from there because everyone is unique; but until you seek Him he cannot take you in the direction you need to go. Your questions may even go unanswered for a while, it may be a time of contemplation and healing, or even re-grouping. But seek Him first, then launch, not visa versa.

My friend ReAnn Ring posted on Facebook this morning the quote “One thing we know for sure … the Lord chases us all the way to our death and beyond. I love when He catches me … and doesn’t let go.”

He caught me in 1996. I guess that is why He makes His disciples “fishers of men,” or women as the case may be. I’m now the fisher, not the fished. Are you near my net? Did this post strike a chord in your heart?  Please take heart when I say “The Devil is a loser and a liar!” Turn a deaf ear to his tongue and seek Christ; it is in Him you’ll find life and a life worth living. It is in His people that you’ll find a physical hand attached to the Spiritual Hands. We are God’s ambassadors to the earth and our job is to allow you to see Him working through us.

If you’re struggling I urge you to find a good Bible believing Church near you and get hooked up! It’s not an instantaneous fix… remember… it’s the launch.

Hebrews 13:5b

… I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.

What to do when God says “no”

For one thing, He may not have said no, He may have said wait. But let’s just suppose He, for real, said ‘no’ to something you were desperately desiring. What’s your reaction? I know what mine’s been often times. Panic! I thought that was for sure the answer. I knew that would make it better, why would God think it wouldn’t? And then there have been the rare occasions that I’ve actually gotten the spiritual tee shirt that says “I did it His way.”

So He said ‘no…” Let’s see what scripture says about it, pray, and follow God’s lead. And remember, you’re in good company.

Paul said in II Corinthians 12:8-9

For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me. And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

Paul was persistent, God was providing

Three times Paul asked God to remove the thorn from his side. There have been many theories as to what exactly this thorn was—so many theories in fact, that it is impossible to diagnose Paul’s situation with complete assurance, but none the less it was troublesome enough for him that he wrote about it. I always believe that if a bible event doesn’t have a name or description it’s intended for me to be able to insert my name and circumstance there. I have my own issues that I’ve sought God for and have been told no, way more times than three. You’d think I’d get the picture, but I know regardless that His grace is sufficient.

It sounds so cliché, does it not? And so easy to roll off your tongue to a friend when they’re going through hard times; but not nearly as easy to say to yourself. God’s grace is sufficient, but it’s okay to ask God to talk you through as your waiting on provision to come. As a matter of fact, I highly recommend it. In talking to God your relationship grows closer and that problem may have been the provision of restoring a right relationship with our Heavenly Father. It was a time to re-focus.

The problem continued, the praising did too

We miss the mark, or at least I do, on praising through the bad times. What a testimony of the Lord’s provision when an unsaved soul can see you going though it with a smile on your face. Sometimes you’re the provision for someone else. If they can see you holding on to hope in the hard times, it just might be the deciding factor that keeps them from going to Hell.

Paul said he would glory in his infirmities. They were a part of the plan! Again, not what we want to hear but truth none the less. In this fallen world we’re going to have troubles and struggles; and be it health, finance or people problems they’ve all been covered by the cross if you’re a child of God. They’ve received His stamp of approval for having a purpose for your gain. It may not be clear, but keep on the path and praise Him all along your way.

Because there’s power in God’s promises

The issues with promises is we can’t see them from the other side as we’re going through. A point brought up in church this past Sunday. It’s easy to look back on a problem and see how God’s woven the provision into the circumstance, but not so clear as you’re gasping for air and feeling as if you’re going down for the third time. This is where faith, even if it’s no more than a mustard seed, has to take place. Nothing happens in life that doesn’t have purpose for God’s glory and for your good. Romans 8:28 – And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.

The power doesn’t come from anything you can do. It comes from faith in what Christ has already done. He died for you that you may have hope in eternity and serve a God that will work everything out for your good, even when there seems to be no good in it.

Hold on!

Is it well?

praise

2 Kings 4:26

Run now, I pray thee, to meet her, and say unto her, Is it well with thee? is it well with thy husband? is it well with the child? And she answered, It is well:

If you read the story in 2 Kings chapter 4, you realize that at the time she said “it is well,” her child was dead. Over the past couple of days I’ve watched multiple posts come and go on Facebook. Some of a greater magnitude of devastation than others. But I’m not making light of any, heartache is heartache, and it hurts. But one common thread in so many is that “come what may” – God is good, and it well. If you do not know Him you likely do not understand how someone could speak those words and “mean it” during some of the hardest days of their lives. It’s because they know that there is a day we’re all looking forward to. That day when heartache and sorrow will not exist. And all those trials we went through and glorified God, will be crowns that we can give back to our Savior. He will robe us in Glory and say “Well done my child, welcome home!”

That’s when eternity starts.

No more separation. No more pain or heartache. Just peace and happiness! Satan and his minions will be cast into a pit and will never again have access to our lives.

Do you know our Jesus? The one Who created this world, and will restore it to its perfected state one day. He loves you. He wants you to know “God is good, and it is well.” He’ll put that in your soul if you’ll give it to Him. There is something within you that lets you know there’s something missing in your life. It’s the hole where the Holy Spirit desires to reside. Once you’ve ask Jesus to be Lord of your life, with faith believing that your life is in His hands, it’s then that He’ll begin guiding you to the rest of the knowledge that you need to walk in faith.

Below is a link to what Christians call “The Road to Salvation.” Please read it and pray the prayer, not because it will save you, but because the God of Whom it speaks of will. What it will do is give you the Word of God to tuck down in your heart and marker that this is the day you trusted Jesus. This is the day that you made the decision to believe “Come what may—God is good, and it well!”

http://thejesuschick.com/the-road-to-salvation/

Face to Face with God

Mark Lowry wrote the words to a song titled “Mary Did You Know” in 1984 when his pastor asked him to write the program for the living Christmas tree choir presentation. I’ve heard the song again and again, and each time I have to wonder what it was like to be in Mary’s situation. A young woman, a child by our definition today, pregnant out of wedlock in the eyes of the world, carrying the Messiah in the eyes of God. My mind wonders to what the conversations would have been between her and Joseph those months of waiting for the birth of Jesus. As the child grew inside of Mary, they were afforded the time to get to know one another without intimacy. No doubt they both turned to God on multiple occasions and asked questions that may or may not have been answered. Why? How? When? It was a faith like we have never known, or have we?

After all, do we not carry God Himself with us? I know I have asked questions like:

“Why do You choose to use me, Lord?”

“How will I know if what I’m doing is what You’d have me do, Lord?”

“When Lord will I know Your purpose?”

I’ve asked and answers have come, but not as I wished they would have. I wanted clearly defined resolution, but more often than not I got the absence of wonder. I didn’t get an answer, just the absence of anxiety or stress ~ Peace.

I don’t think Mary could have possibly known what the future of that Baby Boy would be, but she knew that she was a part of it and for her that was enough. She thought on it, deeply, Luke 2:19 says ~ “But Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart.” And so this morning I find myself pondering God’s purpose in my life as 2013 winds to a close and I’m asking God to open doors in 2014. His doors, not mine. I’m so very grateful for His knowledge that comes from within at the right time. If I don’t know something now, it means I’m not meant to know now.

2 Corinthians 4:6 ~  For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.

I believe when Mary stared into the face of baby Jesus, she knew all she needed to know. And although I desire to know more, I have to continue on believing that God will reveal His desires to me in His time, and if I continue to search for the answer to life’s questions in the face of God, in due time I’ll find them.

Psalm 105:4

Seek the Lord, and his strength: seek his face evermore.

A Dozen Promises for Your Day!

In 2nd Timothy 1:1-2 Paul said to Timothy “Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, according to the promise of life which is in Christ Jesus, To Timothy, my dearly beloved son: Grace, mercy, and peace, from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord.”

There’s a song on my heart this morning! Titled Jesus is Coming Soon

Troublesome times are here, filling men’s hearts with fear
Freedom we all hold dear now is at stake
Humbling your hearts to God saves from the chastening rod
Seek the way pilgrims trod, Christians awake

Jesus is coming soon, morning or night or noon
Many will meet their doom, trumpets will surely sound
All of the dead shall rise, righteous meet in the skies
Going where no one dies, heavenward bound

It’s a peppy little tune our choir sings that has your toe tappin’ and your eyes toward the skies because we believe in the twinkling of an eye we truly could be standing in the presence of God. But for now we are here… in this wicked place, with heartache and trouble on every side, and yet…(pause for special effect) there is unspeakable joy within my soul because I have that promise of life that the Apostle Paul spoke of. And as Christ said in John 10:10 it’s life abundantly!

Believe me when I say that I can get down in the dumps, crazy depressed because of situations in life. I’m not a millionaire, I have bills too. Lots of them! I’ve made mistakes, and not just a few. And if I focused on that I’d stay depressed, but it’s in verses like this that I find glory! Paul gave Timothy that threefold blessing that every believer owns and yet so many refuse to take the title.

Grace is getting what we don’t deserve. Mercy is not getting what we do deserve. And Peace comes from knowing that God controls both and that He loves you.

I don’t deserve anything. I came into this world with nothing, and I’ll leave with nothing but God has sure been good to me in the meantime. I could tell, but it takes much too long, of the times that God has pulled my proverbial hinder parts from the fire in amazing ways! That’s called grace. I could also tell you of the times that I was sure my head was on the chopping block and as I cried out for mercy, He answered. And about that peace that Paul mentioned? You often don’t experience peace until you need it. As a young person I tried to imagine what it would be like when I lost a parent. That thought was so painful I couldn’t even fathom it. And then in 2003 my Dad went to Glory and the sweet peace that I experienced in those hours of grief were amazing!

Life’s tough, but we have a promise. How wonderful it is that in these troublesome times to have a promise that is far more sure than anything you’ve ever had your hands on. What is that promise? Here’s a dozen for your day, but there are countless others!

  1. That God is with me wherever I go – Joshua 1:9
  2. If I keep my mind on Him, I’ll have that perfect peace – Isaiah 26:3
  3. He’ll never leave us or forsakes us!  – Hebrews 13:5
  4. His peace will pass all understanding – Philippians 4:7
  5. He cares for me – I Peter 5:7
  6. All things work together for my good – Romans 8:28
  7. In this world I’ll have trouble, but in Christ we have victory over it or through it– John 16:33
  8. I can escape temptation – 1 Corinthians 10:13
  9. God will supply all my needs – Philippians 4:19
  10. If I ask for wisdom God will supply it – James 1:6
  11. I’m forgiven of all – 1 John 1:9
  12. I will have eternal life – I John 5:11

There are so very, very many more, that’s just a few! I even provided the links so you can read them yourselves. Isn’t God’s Word grand! These are troubling times, but God is faithful. Do you have a need that I can lift to the Lord for you? It would be an honor if you’d let me know!