As the Year Begins- Let Us Tune Up Our Intent

I remind myself.  Put the past in the past.  Learn from it.  Put expectations there too.  They don’t help a thing.  Put love right out in front of you like a hood ornament (the kind they put on old Fords) ready to meet things first, with a bit of shine.

You know; if I told you the past year was a doozy for me full of hard lessons; you’d be able to find someone with more difficulty and more trouble.  The world is full of examples.  So, let’s just say that last year gave me enormous opportunity for growth.  For this; I am grateful.  For if nothing changes; nothing changes.  Jesus has decided to rein me back in for some more work under the hood. He might check that all the gears are working and the steering too.

With daily intent to seek the understanding of His will and all that I need to fulfill it; there is peace in me.

My life slows.

I hear more with greater understanding.

I react less.

My defects appear to me.

I turn these over to Jesus.

He reveals.

He heals.

He is the Great Encourager!

Gratitude appreciates from day to day.

The only sanity in this world is to live here as God intends.  If we live in this world in our own way; we alone cannot fathom it’s purpose or endure its difficulty.  But if we live in this world knowing that each thing and every person has a part in Divine order and Heavenly purpose; we can live well.  We can heal from the things in the past that got us stuck.  We can step into the future with greater joy, thanks and mobility.

One of many things that we can see in the Bible related to Jesus is: he steps forward into every situation with whatever ability God gives him at each moment.  He doesn’t read about what to do or ask another what to do- he takes the action of meeting his day- face to face on God’s terms.  Jesus shows us he never forgets to thank God, his father.

We learn by doing; at least I do.  The better I get at understanding my place in the order of Diving things; the better I become at it.  Each of us, yes- I’m looking at you.  Each of us is designed according to the will of God for the purpose of His design alone. Through our being, fashioned for His purpose; we bring variation, individual interest, personal abilities, extraordinary uniqueness and personal joy to His amazing plan.

So don’t go out of your way listening to what others say you should do or what you shouldn’t do.  Go straight to Jesus.  Ask him if it’s time for you to have a tune-up.  Pull up and let yourself be inspected and repaired!  God made you a beautiful child for his pleasure and joy.  Never forget that he alone loves you more than any one else ever can or ever will.  His love is perfect.  His plan is Divine.

Blessing this New Year!

Thanks Jesus for keeping all the parts in order and the motor ticking…

 

 

Jesus Claims

He

claims

FORGIVENESS

GRACE

MERCY

&

LOVE

(for us)

over

betrayal

over

denial

over

disbelief

over

ingratitude

over

illness

over

misunderstanding

over

accusations

over

lies

over

money

over

convenience

over

customs

over

jealousy

over

envy

over

hindrance

over

power

over

incarceration

over

pain

over

hunger

over

selfishness

over

abuse

over

misunderstanding

over

pride

over

self-satisfaction

over

differences

over

law

over

gender

over

ego

over

comfort

over

ease

over

indifference

over

fear

over

hate

over

death

over

and

over

and

over and over.

Amen.

 

It Is What It Is

Last night I thought about the saying, “It is what it is.”  But then I thought; this really means to me; it is what it was.  That is true for most of us anyway.  Most of us keep dragging some part of the past forward with us.  And the “is what it is” is really; what it was or used to be, along with the now.  I’ve been dragging my load of garbage forward with me every single step of the way.  This keeps me from getting the most out of the moment.  It keeps God from fulfilling His will. It taints the way I view things and affects my response to them.  Much of this developed because of my lack of boundaries.  I would just let myself do about anything for anyone, all but complicit acts.  There was always “Yes, sure.  I can do that.”

I found this dragging up the past along side of me another way I tried to control things.  I did not give it all to God to manage.  I have been working too hard to figure things out that aren’t going according to the way I think they should.  This includes trying to help myself become more healthy.  So today; I give up trying to fix me, to heal me and to discover my defects.  Today, I give all this stuff inside of me and in my brain up to God.  In His time, in His way, my trust is complete.

How many of us can stay put in the middle of the moment, letting God have charge of things?

I know I struggle to stay put there- in that moment.

But today, some few minutes ago; I was reminded it’s so much better to let God figure things out and let, “It is what it is,” be entirely His.  If we can let this precise moment be in God’s hands; then we don’t need to work our brains overtime to figure things out.

This moment, Is; is nothing more than standing down, allowing God all.

Enjoy your moment with God.

Thanks for reading.

The Tree Dahlia Blooms

Even the most amazing things need our attention.  What would they be if not treasured by our recognition or preserved in our memory?  Little.

Today my tree Dahlia burst into bloom- fifteen feet above the ground. Yes, it’s very tall.  The branches resemble bamboo; they are five inches in diameter.  While all other plants wither from the approaching winter season; the tree Dahlia stands out and stands tall.

Why am I writing about this?

If I hadn’t had a morning that began with thankfulness; I may not have seen the Tree Dahlia blossom.   I may not have put my attention on things of beauty, made before me.

Life has been a struggle for me lately.  I am learning new things about myself and my past and my potential future.  God has been gentle but firm.  I couldn’t slip my attention away this time and sweep the mess under the carpet (so to speak).  I could not ignore the mess I was in and part of.

But there is God.  And so there is hope.  Hope acting with faith is a powerful servant.  Hope without faith in action is like a boat without a rudder.

God is also kind and patient.  He creates the perfect storm to drive our rudderless boat into his safe harbor.  There he fixes the rudder, prepares us to navigate, stocks our provisions and gets us shipshape as he sets us back out on course again.  Each of us must captain our own vessel.  Each of us has a map that Jesus has set before us.  We set out on a destination according to his will.  We gain in closeness to him.

I see my ship moving from the harbor.  I understand there is more to do.  Jesus has set a course for my hope to remain and my faith to muster.

I take this delicate pink bloom held in the morning sky as my compass heading.  It reminds me to be thankful.  The tree Dahlia reminds me to look up.  It says ,”Hey, pay attention.  The world around you is filled with beauty.”

As I move closer to love and hold a new understanding; I realize how fragile and unique we all are.  No one is less or more than another.  No one is not good enough. To have the love our lord offers us is his generous gift to all of us and for all of us.  We all need Him.

Thanks Jesus for your giving. Thanks for the morning blossom reminding me of simple beauty.

May your Thanksgiving be one of love and beauty.

Thank you for reading.

 

Piece By Piece

 

My dear friend’s words come to mind, “Let it begin with me.”

She is wise beyond her years- literally.  Betty passed this year.  She left me a wealth of wisdom to sort through.  And she is not the only one who left me a neat pile of clear thinking; which I sort through.  Every piece of wisdom is folded carefully.  Each waits to become part of a treasured quilt, a thing of joy.

My hands are busy.

In the doings of my undoings- I let God choose when and how the pieces will come together.  After all; who better than God to create something new?

Let it begin with me.

Please God, let your work begin with me.

Please, prepare me to be a fashion of your complete will.  Please, go ahead…

But haven’t you always gone ahead of us promising you would be there for us when we arrived?

Who would have guessed that from this surrendering to you, God; I would be set free?

Surely not myself.

Dear God,

I see the harm I have done to others and to myself by trying to be everything for them.  What a good opinion of myself I built up to serve my poor self esteem.  This was done without my intent to fail their need to their own responsibilities and to their own growth.  But it was a control that stunted them.  It also stunted me.  I must have thought I knew more than you; of course without thinking my actions might interfere with your will.  Sorry…

I reached the end of me.

There you are, in wait.

My thanks and praise Dear Lord for your ever considerate love.
Please keep it coming.

My trust is in you.

Love,

Shelly

 

 

 

The Benefit of Truth

Truth is a powerful mother…

During the past few days; I’ve had a chance to look at truth straight in the eye.  Believe me; it’s been looking right back at me.

God called me on this one.  And He certainly has my attention! Let me share with you what I have learned.

Remember the operative word here is ‘motive’.

We can knee jerk from actions of others.  We can also ask God’s hand to steady us and reveal what is going on.  Though I believe it is essential to respect His timing.  In the past; I’ve knee jerked my way along.  I’ve thought of it as an action when really; it was a response.  So, what’s the real difference?

I’ve come to learn; a reaction is not asking the question, “What is my motive?”  A reaction is a response driven by a learned behavior.  In my case; I learned how to respond because I was afraid.

An action usually involves a strategy and a follow through.  Of course, strategies require that you take stock of your resources, consider the goal, assess when the time to act is optimal, consider the possible outcomes, understand your opposition or challenge and estimate your loss or gain if taking this action.

If you’re a devoted Christian like I am; then it also requires turning all of this over to His will. It means you will serve His will and defend His truth as well; when called to do so.

Whew!

So, I understand much of what motivates me has been fear, hoping to win the approval of those near and dear, hating to let people down and doing for them what they can’t or won’t do for themselves.  Oh brother; what a wake up call this is…

One of the other and most important thing I’ve fastened my brain around is this: we do not cause, we cannot cure and we cannot control the illness of addiction.  Addiction can be with money, power, alcohol, food, drugs, sex, compulsion, work, control and probably some others I do not know about.  These illnesses cannot be cured with words, controlling, monitoring or anything else.  They cannot be cured by our hope of a better life for those near and dear. For instance, you cannot cure addiction from any of these responses any more than you can cure the illness of diabetes or cancer.

Ministering, talking, teaching or even doing things to keep things going smoothly will not cure, curb or control an illness.

Where does that leave me?  Well, for one thing; I understand why none of my responses worked in the past.  I understand what my motives were.  Secondly, I am relieved to understand that addiction is not a behavioral issue.  It is an illness.

Now, my action is to ask what my motive is before I get wrapped up in something “too big of me”.  Mable, a wise woman, learned this saying from her grandson Jason, “It’s too big of me.” So I’m saying it now.  Thanks so much for these words Mable and Jason!

I’m very thankful that God has taken me up and reveals to me these things.  How powerful and graceful he is to find the right time to heal me of my former self.

I wish to thank you God.  And I hope dear Jesus, you enjoy my sharing your truth.

 

Break Every Chain

Yesterday’s post needs a reference point.  Please continue reading…

I attended church Wednesday night.  Pastor Bill and Jen sang, “Break Every Chain.”   Much of what drives my methods is linked to fear.  This song reached into me.

This fear inside me wants to be freed.  I needed these lyrics to sing this truth into my heart.  I needed to take complete security in knowing I could give it up and turn it over to Jesus.

Thank’s Pastor Bill!  Thanks Jen!

The world around us gives us too much opportunity to be fearful.  God, in His own way at His own time calls us.  He can rein us in.  He can choose what HE wants us to recognize, when and how.  Isn’t it his Master plan after all?

My post “Oasis” is simply reporting my truth and my continual discovery of Jesus’ design of my life.

My post was written to free up from fear, admit my imperfections, misery, burdens and perceived disadvantages.

We are ALL responsible to our own path and journey with Jesus or without him.  As Christians we learn different things at different times for different reasons.  All of which I have no clue about.

I strive to walk with Jesus in my heart as much as I am able.  I trust the content of his lessons.  I thank Jesus that the position of being a victim is no longer at assembly within me.  I gain more strength and courage to speak of my process as these lessons are learned.  I learn to accept myself more fully right where I am.   I strive to accept you where you are, as well.

And yet there are these occasions:

Distracted at times- yes.

Incapable- yes; sometimes.

Ineffective-certainly this is also true.

Let’s not fear the truth about ourselves or how we influence or project ourselves to others.  Doesn’t Jesus call us to see the truth about ourselves, our situations, our behaviors; and yet He still redeems us…

I thank the people in my life who honor my process in my walk with Jesus.  I thank them for encouraging me to pursue the freedom to be with Jesus fully and yet imperfectly.  Isn’t this real good news?

 

I thank you

for taking

my words

as

a grain

of salt.

 

 

Find the Oasis

At a time when another holds an opinion of you that reduces you to a little less than nothing; what do you have left?  You have God.  You have his son, Jesus.  You have the holiest spirit of Christ with you.  And you may also be fortunate enough to have a few loving, dear friends at your side.

Recently, I was subjected to the experience of verbal abuse.  It wasn’t fun.  It was a hurtful thing.  The wounds cannot be detected on my skin.  They run deep.  In God’s timing with his will; they shall heal.

In the abusing, confiscating, debasing behavior that I experienced; I found humor.

Now, I’ll tell you something I hope you can laugh about.

I was smiling inside myself about the monologue that came spewing my way-but not at first.  It did take the afternoon to settle into God’s peace.  Then, I realized that all of what I had been told that morning was “fake news”.

We’ve been hearing a lot lately about “fake news”.  Fake news is false reporting.  It is something other than the truth.  You can’t trust false news to be accurate.  You can’t rely on it.  It just isn’t so.

I am not a looser.  I’m not a financial weight or burden.  I am not the reported reason for another’s burden of work and subsequent misery.  I am not the reason for someone else’s feelings of scarcity.  I am a contributing, hard working asset to this marriage.  I bring a lot into this home.  I contribute financially, emotionally and most importantly, spiritually.

This is not my opinion of myself, but rather the truth that Jesus shares lovingly with me as he comforts me in HIS truth.  For this my gratitude is infinite.

Can you just imagine all the “fake news” Jesus was subjected to about himself by others?  Wow, there was a lot of fake news going on about him at that time!  He found his way through it.  Somehow, he even made peace with it or peace into it.  Isn’t Jesus amazing?

I don’t feel above my husband or better than he.  I do think we have different lessons to learn.  Some of my work is to love him even when he poses himself as my enemy.  “Love your enemies,” Jesus says.

When things go wrong, don’t go with them.

Go directly to God.

P.S.  I love how Jesus gets me to write about him and share his good works…

Thank you most heartily dear Lord