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Saturday, June 24, 2017

A PERSONAL PROTECTOR



There was a time in my life when I was a young single mother, my mother, stepfather and father-in-law would come visit me to make sure that I have the basic necessities for my daughter and I.  My stepdad would sometimes pick me up and we would go grocery shopping for the week.  My mother would come over to visit with bags of groceries and clothes, whether I needed them or not.  I felt very safe and loved.  I would do the same for my children because the love that was shown to me made such an impact on me that I passed it on to my own children.

When Jesus faced His fate on the cross, He also gave us a protector before He left.  Even though He is God, He was able to experience what it was like to be in the flesh.  Although He was powerful and Holy enough to ward off the evilness of satan, He knew of the pain and suffering we would experience as flesh because He himself went through them.  Because of His love for us, and because He could not be present with us all, He left us a protector.  One who is an equal part of Him and God the Father.  But this one is pretty special in my book.  He is the one who is inside of our hearts, our minds and our bodies who guides us every step of the way through this life.

The Holy Spirit is our conscience that prods us to be Christ-like.   He is the one who protects us from the evil principalities that surround us every day.  He is the one who blesses us and grants us the answer to our prayers.  He is the link, that feeling of close intimacy with God.  What a wonderful gift Jesus has left us.  Our individual protection.  Jesus could have stayed in the world had it not already been planned from the start, but if He stayed in the flesh, He could not have had a one on one with every single person alive.  With the Holy Spirit, He can.  Isn't God just awesome?  And as soon as we stop questioning His mere power with our limited understanding and our human mental capacity, but instead have pure faith, we will be able to let the love flow into our lives from God.

Until my next rant... LOVE ONE ANOTHER!

Sunday, June 18, 2017

WHO'S UR DADDY?


It seems true to think that when one grows up with an absent father, one seems unfulfilled.  Absent can both mean physical and emotional.  Some fathers can be present physically but fully abandoned emotionally and mentally.

This truth makes God even more real.  The father is usually the head of the family, the glue that holds together a unit that is in need of not only financial support but emotional and spiritual protection.  Absent the latter, the unit falls apart.  Most men can be baby makers but not fathers.  For whatever reason they abandon their units, the unit is in turmoil.

Most women would surmise that they can fill both roles.  However attractive that seems to be, a woman can never fill the role of a father in all aspects of her children's lives.  Case in point, I was a single parent to two children.  Although I worked myself off to make ends meet, I still could not fill the role of father to my son who wanted to engage in sports.  I can be in attendance, sure.  But I couldn't teach him the techniques, the male perspective, because I am not a man who knows about sports.  The same with my daughter.  I can tell her about relationships from a woman's point of view, but never from a man's point of view.  It's not sexist to say this is true.  If a woman thinks she can fulfill both roles, she is just deceiving herself.

God assumes the father role to all of us.  Thank God He does.  He was the one I clung to growing up with an physically, emotionally and mentally absent father.  Thank God for human fathers like my father in law, Earl and my stepfather Henry who stepped into a father role in my life.  With them I learned both worldly and spiritual lessons.  They were my guide and protectors in my adult life.  I wish they lived longer but the lessons they taught me is engraved in my heart and mind.  Since their passing, God, who is the almighty Father, protector and provider has been there for me.  I can say with all honesty and gusto that I am proud for Him to be my Father.  Meeting Him face to face is just a bonus.  I feel His mighty and strong presence every day.  And of course, I feel His disappointment in me too.  Life on earth is not perfect, but God is.  So I really take to heart His lessons for me via situations I'm faced with every day.

I hope and pray more men would step up into the father role doing God's will for their own children.  That would just be a double bonus!

Until my next rant... LOVE ONE ANOTHER!  That's the ticket!



Sunday, June 11, 2017

ALONE AGAIN, NATURALLY.





Who gets it?  Often on social media when commenting on a post some people do not understand another's point of view, and because the handiness of face-to-face conversations are lacking in these types of venues, such comments usually gets misunderstood.  Especially when it comes to the perspective of a Christian by secular people, it often requires a rather long thread.  

I remember a time when I commented on a post and said, "we are born alone and we will die alone."  Someone thought I was being very cruel by making this comment.  I am a lazy explainer, I will admit it.  One of the things I lack, which God has not graced me with, is patience.  God teaches me to be patience every day.  Every day, I fail.  I keep on trying, but somehow, I find myself struggling with patience.  The only test I struggle with on impatience is impatience with lazy thinkers.  I do not use the word "stupid" in this instance because I feel that God gave us all a brain to use.  But for whatever reason, there are people out there who refuse to push the envelope when it comes to thinking.

Case in point, this person who accused me of being cruel to another.  So, for his sake and anyone else's sake out there, I will expound.

When I say we were born alone and will die alone, I meant that physically.  It is a fact that even in a multiple birth situation, we think and feel individually so we are still born alone.  Similarly, when we die, we die alone.  Throughout our lives, our brains and our hearts only feel and think for one person.  Our accountability to God and our fulfillment of His plan for us is for each and every person by themselves.  Even if we have been married for a thousand years, when we die, we will die in one body.  Our spirits live on but life for only one. 

For this reason, being co-dependent with our spouse is a silly notion.  Our relationship with God is between us and God, individually.  We cannot read others' thoughts or their hearts but God can.  If there is a person present when we die a physical death, it is God.  He is there waiting for us on the other side.  

There is no joy that can compare to that time when we meet God as we enter our eternal lives.  This life is merely an incubator.  We exit it when we are fully cooked.  We are given a chance day after day to hone our skills for God's glory.  Let us not waste a moment for the opportunity to do so.

Until my next rant... LOVE ONE ANOTHER!



Thursday, June 8, 2017

MY SUCCULENT LIFE

Have you ever had an obsession?  I do. Now.  Well, besides art, SUCCULENTS!!!  I have a large collection of succulents and I want to share them with you!
 

 
 
 

 

 
 




Sunday, June 4, 2017

AFRAID OF LIFE, AFRAID OF DEATH



It really is amusing to me that I have a fear of things beyond my control.  Perhaps that is a normal human reaction as I am sure I am not the only one who feels that way.  

When things are good in life, we often fear that a problem will arise around the bend.  Instead of enjoying the calm, we brace ourselves for the storm.

My first (and perhaps last) paragliding experience in Maui was interesting.  As I was being hoisted up in the air like a kite, I white-knuckled the strap around me as if letting go would send me plummeting to the very scary and vast Pacific Ocean.  However, as my mind settled and got used to the unfamiliar state of being, I began to appreciate the silence of the atmosphere, away from the noise of the terrain below.  My mind wondered about how fortunate the birds in flight as they experience its peacefulness.  

Back on land I couldn't help but appreciate life and all of God's blessings.  The paragliding experience gave me a glimpse of being taken up with Jesus upon His return, only more glorious!

Confident living is a result of a relationship with Christ, and not by one's own resolution.  The more we seek and know Christ, His complete control will be ever so present within us and the more we can relax.  Life is not for us to control, even our own lives.  The bigger Christ is in our lives, whether by life or death, the more confident we are in fully trusting Him as we live our our days on earth.

Until my next rant... LOVE ONE ANOTHER!



Saturday, May 27, 2017

YOU ARE, WHO YOU ARE


There are times when Christians fall into the traps of pride.  We can get caught up in our own definition of acting Christ-like or godly.  We look over to all the others around us and size them up looking for imperfections to criticize.  In the same token, we become full of ourselves thinking we are at least trying not to commit a sin but honestly, we are.  

Pride is one of the sins that trip us up.  We think to ourselves and tell God, "at least I don't do what so and so does!"  Do you know that God doesn't even listen to such talk?  God knows mankind's heart.  No matter what we do, no matter how good we or others think we are, we are still sinners.  I mean daily sinners!  Alternatively, when secular people look at us, they also automatically think that we are holier-than-thou and that is enough of a reason to hate us.  The world is a crazy place full of crazy people.  Maybe crazy is too vague of a word.  How about self-righteous?  Yes, that's a better word.

It is just like the story of a certain king who, when removing his crown for rest, hangs it on a nail instead of another human's head.  The reason is because when a person wears a crown, even if for a short time, he would puff up and feel he is fit to be a king.  A person can do this, but not a nail. 

We must realize that as humans, such faltering humans, there is no good in us.  We are only as righteous as Jesus makes us.  The moment we start brag praying to God, it is worthless to God.  We must remain humble knowing that we do not have a crown...yet.  All that we are, and all that we do that is good and pleasing to God's eyes is all for Him.  Not for us to gloat about.  As soon as we realize this, we continue to walk in God's will.  When we continue to walk in God's will, God is glorified and after all, it is all about Him.  It is never about us. 


Saturday, May 20, 2017

I UNDERSTAND YOU



I understand you. I understand that all your life you have just gone through the motions. As a child, no one has told you about God. 

Alternatively, for some of you, God was shoved down your throats so you learned to hate Him, hate church, and could not wait to get out on your own so you can make your own choices. 

Once you left, you heard others say that the world was your oyster. You set out to make a name for yourself. You got a good job, made good money, maybe even met the person of your dreams. You lived the life you've always wanted to live. You got married, bought a house, had a couple of kids. Life was great. You look around you with a nod and said, "I did all this on my own. I am a strong person. I can handle anything else that comes my way and come out a victor!"

Years later, tragedy struck. The firm you worked for filed bankruptcy. You found another job, but it was not as golden as the last one. Because you are older now, competition was tight. But you take the job anyway because you needed to support the family. The children are older, they needed more. Your spouse suddenly went cold and you find out about an affair. You get divorced. The custody and support problems drag you down. Property needs to be split, which means you will soon lose your house. The kids are stressed about the situation. Money is now tight. All of a sudden, your world feels like it's crumbling around you. And it is. Because soon you need the help of family, friends, anyone who will just listen. On the surface, they did. But you only got advise. You hate to burden your family and friends with your problems knowing they got some of their own.

Suddenly, you feel alone and dejected. You think of the worst. But if you were gone, the kids would have no one. You certainly could not do that to them. They need you! Now more than ever. But who do you turn to when there is no one there?

Without warning and as if on cue, you look up to heaven. But instead of asking the God that was shoved down your throat when you were young to help you, you curse him instead. You scream at him, "If you are who you say you are, why did you let these things happen to me? How can people worship such a punisher?" 

You then realize what you just did. Just like a wayward child would lash out at their parents with blame, they still run to them when life gets tough. We always hurt the ones we love and who we are comfortable enough to know love us unconditionally.

Suddenly, a sweep of calmness envelops you. This calmness is the Holy Spirit, the protective God, the one that was given to us by God the Son. God let's you feel his love at that time. He said that He is all you need. He loves you and gives you peace. He says He will take care of you even though you have turned away from Him all these years. You surrender. You give your life to Him and ask Him to take your burdens from you because He promised it to you. You repent. You ask for His forgiveness and He you is merciful enough to give it to you wholeheartedly because He said that is why JESUS died. He died so you can be easily forgiven. He died so God the Father would not cast you to the pit of hell for any sin. JESUS is the buffer between you and God. JESUS gave His life because God sacrificed Him to us. His precious baby boy! For you, undeserving wretched sinner. But He understands because He created you in His image to love Him back. He wants you to spend eternity with Him! But He understands that you will never be perfect. And yes, even after you return to Him. However, because of His forgiveness, you try to live a life that is pleasing to Him. You will try to see others through His forgiving eyes and heart. So sin becomes less and less tempting to you. 

You start seeing things in a different light. You now want to do what he has done for you to help others like you. You take your life and place it in His hands. You let JESUS take the wheel. Now you are not responsible for anything bad happening in your life because nothing but good will transpire. Because you trusted Him. And that is all He wants.

Yes, I understand you, because I am you.