Monday, February 23, 2009

Don't give up...but give it up!

There comes a time in life when we feel that we have hit rock bottom. I say this because I have been there. I have seen me at my lowest and it wasn't a beautiful sight at all.

The bottom feels different to everyone. I have the opportunity to talk with some individuals about what that pain feels like at the bottom. But what really intrigues me is one statement made by all. "There is no where to go but up"

When you think of up....what do you think of? Where do your eyes go? What do you see? What does "up" look like to you? Is it worse? Is it better? Or is it just another long journey that you are about to embark upon?

For me, looking up means looking to the Heaven's. Looking to God to lead the way. Sure, he is everywhere. I can look up, down, right, or left, and He is in every direction. But when you hit bottom, your natural reaction is to start working your way back to the top.

I find it interesting that when we are there, we find it easier to give up than let God take control. A lot of times, this is the point when we are crying out and begging Him to give us NO MORE! We question our strength and how much we can really handle and we don't put our total trust in Him. Trusting Him means taking a leap of faith and letting go of all that control we are use to having. Sometimes, it means you lose some of the dearest things you love the most. But when it's right, those things that are dear to you will come back into your life and into your heart more than you could ever imagine.

Daniel expressed some of his thoughts in the second chapter He said, "May God be praised for ever and ever! He is wise and powerful. He changes times and seasons. He sets up kings. He removes them from power. The wisdom of those who are wise comes from him. He gives knowledge to those who have understanding. He explains deep and hidden things. He knows what happens in the darkest places. And where he is, everything is light" 2:20-22 (NIRV)

I think we get mixed up in something. Just because our God is sovereign doesn't mean that our lives will be simple. We have to trust Him enough to let go of it all and trust Him with the earthly decision we have to make. Sometimes, those decisions aren't ours to make. They are His. We can open doors and windows, but God only needs a willing spirit to work in their hearts. They may not even know they are willing! But the hardest thing for us to do is to let go. Especially when it hurts so badly.

Over the past few months, I would cling to Psalm 25:
Lord, I worship you. My God, I trust in you.
Don't let me be put to shame. Don't let my enemies win the battle over me.
Those who put their hope in you will never be put to shame.
But those who can't be trusted will be put to shame. They have no excuse.
Lord, show me your ways. Teach me how to follow you.
Guide me in your truth. Teach me. You are God my Savior.
I put my hope in you all day long. Lord, remember your great mercy and love.
You have shown them to your people for a long time.
Don't remember the sins I committed when I was young.
Don't remember how often I refused to obey you.
Remember me because you love me. Lord, you are good.
The Lord is honest and good. He teaches sinners to walk in his ways.
He shows those who aren't proud how to do what is right.
He teaches them his ways. All of the Lord's ways are loving and faithful
for those who obey what his covenant commands.
Lord, be true to your name.Forgive my sin, even though it is great.
Who is the man who has respect for the Lord?
God will teach him the way he has chosen for him.
Things will always go well for him. His children will be given the land.
The Lord shares his plans with those who have respect for him.
He makes his covenant known to them. My eyes always look to the Lord.
He alone can set my feet free from the trap. Turn to me and show me your favor.
I am lonely and hurting. The troubles of my heart have increased.
Set me free from my great pain. Look at how I'm hurting! See how much I suffer!
Take away all of my sins. Look at how many enemies I have!
See how terrible their hatred is for me! Guard my life. Save me.
Don't let me be put to shame. I go to you for safety.
May my honest and good life keep me safe.
I have put my hope in you.
God, set Israel free from all of their troubles!

God has a way of reaching people and doing what needs to be done. We have good intentions, but sometimes, we wear ourselves out just trying to get it done for Him.
Proverbs 3:5-6 Trust in the Lord with all your heart. Do not depend on your own understanding. In all your ways remember him. Then he will make your paths smooth and straight.
Psalm 18:30 God's way is perfect. The word of the Lord doesn't have any flaws. He is like a shield to all who go to him for safety.
Psalm 62:8 Trust in him at all times, you people.Tell him all of your troubles. God is our place of safety. Selah
1 Timothy 4:10 10 We work hard for it. Here is the saying. We have put our hope in the living God. He is the Savior of all people. Most of all he is the Savior of those who believe.

I pray for those tonight who have a hard time letting go. Those who fear losing so much that they are afriad to do what needs to be done. I pray that God gives them everything they need to conquer those fears and to let Him be in control of the hurt. Only He knows the outcome. He wrote the book. I pray they can find peace, comfort, and contentment in knowing they serve a mighty God who will never let them go. I pray they can realize just how far the east is from the west and that no matter what, that distance is nothing in comparison to what God can do with the hurt, pain, and struggles we go through in this lifetime. One day, it will all be clear to us and we will rejoice in His presence.

Friday, February 20, 2009

B 9...Hallelujah!

Tonight I went to Pizza Bingo with my kids. I was extremely exhausted but made a good effort to keep my eye on the numbers and concentrate for 3 long hours on the game. But....we never did win any prizes. For me, the prize was just being there in the moment with my kids.

I have found in schools that parents tend to always be in competition with one another. I have yet to figure out why. For me, it's all about the kids.

With anything we do, we should make the focus what it's really about. No need to compete. We're all gathered for a common purpose. Whether you are at school, or work, or in sports, or at the mall, or at church. Everyone has a goal to reach. To each person, that is going to look different. But we don't have to compete. The only one that you are competing with is yourself and your own heart. Why make it more complicated than it really is.

I observed some parents in their 20's tonight working about 5 cards each. I saw some grandparents just looking over their 1 card each. The younger ones looked stressed beyond max as they tried to win it all. The grandparents just sat and watched the kids have fun. They never lost sight of what was important.

I love in church that we don't have to wait for a certain letter or number to be called out for us to win a prize. We already won. Instead of yelling BINGO, we should be shouting Hallelujah!

Man....What a great ending to an even more fabulous week.

Could it get any better?

Thursday, February 19, 2009

God works....

Today was interesting for me. God just works in amazing ways. More than I can ever even explain.

I went to my clinical site. I never know where I am going to be placed and I don't know who I will be rounding with for the day. I don't get to pick either.
I went to the floor to meet a fellow RT and begin my rounds for the day. He was a nice looking fellow in his late 20's and seemed a little quiet when I arrived. I thought....'oh great, just what he wants! A student tag-a-long all day'

It may have not been what he wanted, but it's what God wanted.

The more we talked, the more we dove into each others lives. He's divorced and also knows a friend getting ready to enter that same arena. Despeartely trying to help his friend not go down the same path, he's trying to help, but seems down himself.
He asked me some interesting questions: "Do you put your husband before your kids?"
I told him yes. But it wasn't always that way. I had to grow into that. So automatically, he assumed, Chad came first and was the number one in my life.

But what I don't think he was expecting me to say....I said next "But I put God before my husband"

There was some really awkward silence for a few moments. We continued seeing patients. I could tell something was really weighing on him, but I didn't want to ask.

Finally at lunch we sat down and talked and he opened up a whole world to me that just seemed so heavy. The more we talked, the more you could tell the burden was lifted. We talked about relationships, talked about church, and talked about God.

He's not in a good place, but despearetly wants to be there.

I'm confident in my God enough that He will help my new friend get there. I'm excited to see what God will do.

Monday, February 16, 2009

It only gets better!!!

This day .....or past 3 days....have been some of the most amazing days that I can ever remember. I praise God for all He does in my life.

Today started off for me with an EXTREMELY difficult test at 8am. I normally walk into test with very little faith....but that was not the case. I did all I could do to study for this one and did VERY WELL on it! After the test was completed, we were told this was the hardest test of the semester. Wow! I'm really excited for this semester then!

I thought it would be a difficult morning for me as Chad was going back for his re-check on his melanoma at 9am. I wanted to be with him but I couldn't miss the test. But after many prayers, God gave me such a sense of peace last night when I went to bed. Today He delivered GREAT NEWS!!!!!! He has no cancer....NO NOTHING! YAY GOD! Thank you so much for giving my husband such a clean bill of health! And thank you for allowing me to rest in the comfort of your assurance.

Today is a very special day for me as I've reached some personal goals. I've learned a few things along the way. A little bit about me....and A LOT about the God I serve. I've learned how to put the past behind me and put God in front of me at all times. When He is in front of me, He IS my shield and protector. And even beside me He is. But it's when I push him behind me that my worldly side takes over. Someone once said "It doesn't matter how deep you fall, but it's how high you bounce when you come back"

I firmly belive that if you always do what you've always done then you will always get what you've always got!
Doing something different was what I did...and I'm a better person for it.
It's all a matter of love, trust, and committment to doing the right thing. I have had the best mentors, accountabilty partners, and have made of of the most amazing friends ever. Sometimes you have to really walk through a fire with someone and put down all personal judgements to see the core of who they really are. It's amazing what God will reveal to you. Most of the time, if something bugs you about someone else, take a good look at yourself first. It probably bothers you because you struggle with the same thing within yourself. Someone else may look at me and still see the flesh as tainted. God looks at me and sees me as His beautiful creation, inside...and out. That's the kind of God I serve. He loves me for me. He lets me mess up. But no matter what, I can count on Him. Nothing else really even matters.

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will direct your paths.
Proverbs 3: 5-6

When we we are on HIS path and follow HIS direction, our eyes will always be looking up!

The days only get better and better and better! I love my life!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

I love it!

I love days that are full of eye opening experiences.

Some you feel are from God and others you know that the message came directly from Satan himself. I love it when God make it TOTALLY CLEAR to you. I don't think I have had many of those moments in my life where I felt like God was standing in front of me saying WWWWWAAAAKKKKKEEEEE UUUUPPPPP!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Today was one of those days! Over and over and over today God communicated His love for me. Man.....I LOVE OUR GOD!!!