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Archive for the ‘Complex’ Category

On this day, I felt the best. I was happy and woke up ready to go. I was able to help my husband get his lunch packed for work that day. I had energy like I hadn’t had for days. Although, I was short of breath a few times and had to take it slow. Also, Tim wasn’t about to let me over do it. He did as much for me as he could and would often call me from work or send me a text to see how I was doing. (I’ve not had that much attention from him in years.)

Day # 12

Continued reading in 1 Kings, Chapter 21. There was a lot of fasting in this chapter. The “real” fasting was at the end. The kind the Lord delights in. I’ll just let you read it for yourself. Except for verses 27-29

“When Ahab heard these words, he tore his clothes, put on sackcloth and fasted. He lay in sackcloth and went around meekly. Then the word of the Lord came to Elijah the Tishbite; ‘Have you noticed how Ahab has humbled himself before me? Because he has humbled himself, I will not bring this disaster in his day, but I will bring it on his house in the days of his son.’ ”

I read that over and over. Not only was God’s mind changed (which was BIG) but there was something else I might not have noticed unless I hadn’t been fasting for 12 days…. The fact that he “lay in sackcloth”  Isn’t that wonderful? I was doing the same thing most days. I’m so glad that’s biblical!

Isaiah 58: 2-4, 6-14 – The fast the Lord delights in. Read it for yourself!! It’s good.

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Back to Psalms. Lying on my bed with little strength, here is what the Lord spoke into my heart this day.

Psalms 102:17

“He will respond to the prayer of the destitute; he will not despise their plea.”

This day I honestly don’t remember much about. I didn’t journal it. But I do know this, I hurt on this day. Not just physically, but on the inside. I was desperate for God to give me something. My dad’s health was the top priority, but second to that was me eating. Was I allowed to break the fast if my dad was healed before my 3 week fast was up?  This was really a concern of mine. I didn’t ever think it would be.  My thoughts most often turned to food. When I eat, what shall I have? I know! Crab salad! I am really craving crab. Yum!  On other days, I felt somewhat more “holy” when my thoughts were a little more “pure”…Tomatoes. That’s all I want. OR! A cucumber! Yum…actually, any veggie will do.

It’s almost like I couldn’t focus on prayer or anything. My positions were mostly: dragging my feet to the couch, dragging my feet to my bed, or walking normally to the kitchen to get some food for someone else in my family. I was more concerned than usual about my children being fed and full. However, I felt like I was going to die… so if they even thought about turning up their little noses to anything I made, I was angry and demanded that they eat it anyway. After all, it looked very good to me!

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Every day I cracked the bible it was something about fasting, or prayer, or God feeding those who hunger. It just amazes me how efficient He is. He knows me better than I do!

Day # 10

Joel 2:12 – 17

” ‘Even now,’ declares the Lord, ‘return to me with all your hear, with fasting and weeping and mourning. Rend you heart and not your garments. return to the Lord your God, for he is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and abounding in love, and he relents from sending calamity. Who knows? He may turn and have pity and leave behind a blessing – grain offerings and drink offerings for the Lord your God. Blow the trumpet in Zion, declare a holy fast, call a sacred assembly. Gather the people, consecrate the assembly; bring together the elders, gather the children, those nursing at the breast. Let the bridegroom leave his room and the bride her chamber. Let the priests, who minister before the Lord, weep between the temple porch and the altar. Let them say, ‘Spare your people, O Lord. Do not make your inheritance an object of scorn, a byword among the nations. Why should they say among the peoples, ‘where is their God?’ ”

– Fasting and prayer – I was awed that the Lord asked for the children and babies that were still nursing to fast and pray. This was serious! I’ve always felt that I was exempt from fasting while I was pregnant or nursing my children, but here it looks as if every one was REQUIRED to fast no matter what the age or circumstance. This was definitely new information for me to digest.

Joel 2:25-27

“I will repay you for the years the locusts have eaten – the great locust and the young locust, the other locust and the locust swarm – my great army that I send among you. You will have plenty to eat, until you are full, and you will praise the name of the Lord your God, who has worked wonders for you; never again will my people be shamed. Then you will know that I am in Israel, that I am the Lord your God, and that there is no other; never again will my people be shamed.”

This was such a hope to me. It increased my faith. It made me want to wait to see what the Lord was going to do. Is my father being healed part of His plan? Does He have other ideas? At this point it doesn’t matter. He is going to repay what the locust have eaten. Can you imagine what that would look like? What it might feel like? Can God get any more amazing than this!? O Yeah.

 

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Every time I opened the bible, it seemed as though it was just what I needed to read at that time. It was amazing. God was speaking to me directly through His word.

Day # 9

At dinner time I went in my room to be away from the food and get some manna from my Lord. I cracked open my NIV bible to get my bearings and see which direction I would need to turn to get to my daily bible reading and my eyes fell upon Psalms 107:9

“For he satisfies the thirsty and fills the hungry with good things.” I underlined it and put a AMEN! next to it. I was hungry. I wanted to eat. This just showed me how much God knows what I want and what I truly need – MORE OF HIM!

I turned a few pages to the right and read Psalm 130:5-7

“I wait for the Lord, my soul waits, and in his word I put my hope. My sould waits for the Lord more than watchmen wait for the morning, more than watchmen wait for the morning. (yes, it is stated twice…probably for effect)  O Israel, put your hope in the Lord for with the Lord is unfailing love and with him is full redemption.”

I took this to mean, hope in God for He can do anything. My dad, no problem. It’s done. Just wait. Just hope.

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I didn’t keep a journal of each day. I wish I would have. I felt too weak to do so most days. These are the days that I was able to journal something. Although it isn’t much, it may give you an idea of what it was like for me.

Day #8 (this is also a recap from my last entry)

I found Proverbs 3:7-8  “Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the Lord and shun evil. This will bring health to your body and nourishment to your bones.”            I was literally reading this while lying on my bed. Too weak to do anything else, I felt like I needed nourishment more than food. I felt more emotional during this time than I have in a long time, crying over everything.

and Proverbs 4:18-19 “The path of the righteous is like the first gleam of dawn, shining ever brighter till the full light of day. But the way of the wicked is like deep darkness; they do not know what makes them stumble.”  I cried at this thought. I couldn’t help it. The wicked don’t EVEN KNOW what makes them stumble.

We have a neighbor that is a living example of this. I’ve hated her. I’ve had compassion on her. But she doesn’t even KNOW what makes her stumble. I do. But she doesn’t. She comes to the house begging for my husband to give her money. I hated her because he would give her the money. If she truly needed help, wouldn’t she go somewhere where there are people all set up to give her what she needs? She returns time after time to beg from strangers (us). It bothers me that she doesn’t want to talk to me. She asks for Tim every time. I am jealous of my husband’s time. I don’t want him to talk to her. I wouldn’t turn her away. Believe me, I want to sometimes.  I gave her a box of food out of our pantry. I’ve offered to help her learn how to shop from sales and use coupons. She won’t take that kind of help. She just wants money.  She’s admitted to being a meth user in the past. I believe she still is… You only have to look at her to know. She doesn’t care about her humiliation. All she wants is another hit. I don’t know, but I’ve heard, when you are so addicted to drugs, you’d do just about anything to get more. For this I have hated her. I didn’t want to give her anything. If someone doesn’t care about getting better why help them?

I am by no means a perfect Christian. I am still learning how to love people for who they are. Tim explained his generosity to me this way, “They are searching. This is just what they found first.” I never thought about it that way. If meth was something that I found before I found God, you better believe I’d do anything to get more! Can we blame them for what they’ve become? We’re all searching for something to fill the hole we have inside. The Black Hole that seems to pull in everything we feed it and still hunger for more. We need something, someone to cork it off. The only one who can do that is the Lord Jesus Christ. He is freedom from the chains, the stumbling in the darkness and never knowing the cause; He’s the filler.

It’s my desire for our neighbor to find this same Jesus, who can fill her to no end.

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I am curious about people who do not believe in God. Or at least the ones that say they do, but it is apparent from their way of life that they don’t.

Today I came across a Facebook post by a friend of a friend. She asked a very simple but heartbreaking question.  “I want to ask all my friends out there what they think Gods name is.” She wrote, “Please respond. Be nice as HE is listening”

I interpret this to mean she does not know, but believes there is a God who is omnipresent. I would love to comment on this.

There are so many names that we have labeled God with based on what we have seen from His sparkling personality. But as far as I know, there is only one place in the bible where God is asked His name. This account is found in Exodus 3:1-15  Moses sees a wonderous sight and is drawn away from his daily life of tending someone else’s sheep. A bush, on fire but not burning. He is drawn away. The place where he comes to a stand still is called, by God, holy ground. A place to remove your shoes. Comfort in an uncomfortable way. “Do not come closer,” God said. Why not? Danger? Probably. But what I see here is comfort. Comfort like you would want after a hot day out with whiney, stinky, sheep and now night has begun in the desert with it’s freezing cold wind biting your back with every step home. Coming to a stand still in front of a fire is the best place to take off your shoes and relax. When God holds Moses back at this point, it reminds me of a scene in a movie I’ve seen where a very rich businessman is offering a job, while sitting in a black limousine, to a jobless intelligent scientist who is standing out in the rain looking through the window. Any idiot would take the job. But Moses here wants to know the name behind it. Afterall signs and wonders are a day-to-day occurrences for Moses, right? Probably not, but you aren’t going to get into a car with a stranger no matter what kind of candy he’s offering… unless you know who he is, or, in this case, his name!  Perhaps Moses was taught not to talk to strangers and NEVER EVER get on a camel with a stranger. God knows this, so to ease Moses’ conscience a little, He tells him how He knows him. “I am the God of your father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.”

I see that up until this point Moses was not afraid. He was curious. He probably would have come closer, maybe even to touch the fire, unless God stopped him. I don’t know what would have happened, but I suppose when you’re unholy (which Moses was) and are in the presence of Holy God (which Moses was close to being) you die…  Back to God introducing Himself to Moses! He said, “I am the God of your father,” I will assume that Moses knew his father was not the pharaoh and, at this point, was face to face with the truth (that being, his father was a Hebrew).  Okay, so this deity knows Daddy and He knows where Daddy came from. That is still no reason to get on the camel with Him. God goes on to say (just in case Moses was confused) “…the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob”  Not only does this God know Daddy, He’s Daddy’s God. Not only was this Daddy’s God, this was the God of Moses’ forefathers!  THEN Moses was afraid to look!

I’m sure Moses looked down at the shepherds clothes he was wearing and began to realize just who he wasn’t. He wasn’t a prince. Not anymore. He wasn’t a leader. Nope, sorry. That had to be a major blow to his self-esteem. He took up a servants job after running away from his life as a prince of Egypt because he killed an Egyptian man. He now smelled similar to a fearful, powder-puff like, mammal. He was just a man trying to live a normal life. He wasn’t good enough for this. But, he was still curious! So he says to God, “Who am I, that I should go to Pharaoh and bring the Israelites out of Egypt.” That wasn’t a question.

God does not seem too disturbed by this and answers, “I will be with you. And this will be the sign to you that it is I who have sent you: when you have brought the people out of Egypt, you will worship God on this mountain.”

Moses gives me the feeling that he is trying to be sly with God and get information from him without really committing to anything. He says, “Suppose I go to the Israelites and say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you,’ and they ask me, ‘What is his name?’ Then what shall I tell them?”

God says to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: ‘I AM has sent me to you.’ ”

God also says to Moses, “Say to the Israelites, ‘The LORD, the God of your fathers – the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob – has sent me to you.’ This is my name forever, the name by which I am to be remembered from generation to generation…”

The story goes on, but this is my point right here. If the Great I AM said this is the name by which He is to be remembered from generation to generation how does He have any other name? Yes, we call Him other names to describe what little that has been revealed to us about Him but those are, in a sense, only nicknames. Why not use His real name?

The quotes I used were taken from NKJV and NIV versions of the Bible.

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