Don’t Stop Pushing

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At the beginning of the year I had a dream of being in labor. I was in a delivery room and I said “I can’t do it any longer. I need to stop.” I immediately woke up. I heard God say to me. “Don’t stop pushing. You are almost there.”

There comes a time when you are birthing something that you will want to stop. But most likely that’s when you are close and must not/can not stop pushing. You’re almost there.

I have four children and let me tell you birthing isn’t a lot of fun in my opinion. It’s hard, it’s painful, it’s exhausting. Yet when that baby is put into your arms, you don’t even remember the pain and exhaustion.

Life can be a lot like child birth especially when we are going through trials and waiting on God to move. It can be hard, painful and exhausting. When we are in that kind of season how many times have we given up or felt like giving up?

Well, let me share something else I have learned through giving birth. When you are the closest to delivery, is when it becomes the hardest. It’s called transition. It’s no surprise that it’s called transition. Transition by definition is:

-the process or a period of changing from one state or condition to another.
-to undergo or cause to undergo a process or period of transition.

Transition by definition is movement and change. It’s a process. It can be a hard and painful one but with a great reward on the other side. Even if you can’t see what is going, something is moving. You must trust that things are changing whether you can see them or not. I know it can feel like a long, dark, scary tunnel. Like a long, dark night without a dawn. But you have to come out the other side. You will come out on the other side. Because what’s been waiting there will be glorious.

I know you are tired. I know you’ve been waiting. But wait a little longer. Keep the faith. Pray a little harder. God knows his plans for you. And right now is your transition. So take a deep breath, focus on the other side and don’t stop pushing. You’re almost there.

 

Unhindered

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Lord remove the hindrances from our lives that keeps us from walking out your call on our lives.

Unhindered

I want to be unhindered
The choice is mine
To reach out to the dying
Or leave them behind

Unhindered and fighting
Heading toward the mark
Unmovable and unshakeable
Pressing on through the dark

Unhindered I stand
Unwilling to Let go
The idea of freedom
And a defeated foe

Fighting against a capture
He wants to take the prize
To defeat the chosen
And put blinders on their eyes

Unhindered we stand
To fight one more fight
To share the gospel
And shine the undying light

Lord,  help me live unhindered
Help us listen to your call
Entering  into the quiet place
Forsaking it all

Sunset

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I love sunsets. God is an artist. Here are a few of my favorite sunset pictures.

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Will you or won’t you?

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Recently my pastor preached on a word that has been on my heart for quite sometime. Obedience. Such a simple word. We use it all the time. We talk about how our children need to obey. We talk about obeying the law. We even use obedience when talking about our pets. But do we really understand its importance, especially when we are talking about Christianity. Do we really grasp the importance of obeying what God wants us to do. So, I pose a simple question….

Will you do what God asks or won’t you?

When he asks us to deny ourselves and follow after him, will we lay down the things that separate us from God? Will we do the things that seem strange, crazy, or that put us out of our comfort zone? What if what He is asking is hard? Even when it is terribly hard will we obey? I hope our answer is yes, though I know far too often our answer is no. We may not completely understand that we are saying no, but if we are not walking in God’s will, then that is exactly what we are saying.

The bible tells us if we love God then we will obey, sounds simple enough right? But yet we don’t always obey. Maybe we are scared. Maybe we are unsure of what we are hearing. Maybe we are just selfish. Whatever the reason, the reason really is not the issue. Jesus lived to make the Father happy and glad. That is what we should do. If you are a parent, you know that is what you want from your child. You want obedience. And you want obedience not because you are a big, mean parent. You want obedience, because you want what is best for your child. Well, church, that is why God wants obedience.

Obedience is about love. Obedience is about God’s love for us and our love for him. We become obedient when we love what the Father loves. Because we value what the Father values. Our Lord God is perfect in all ways. The things He wants for us are better than anything we can imagine. He wants us to obey because He sees the whole picture and knows what is waiting for us on the other side of obedience.

At the end of the day, it may look strange. It most likely will be uncomfortable and even hard at first. But the more you obey, the more of God’s presence you will see in your life and the quicker and easier it will become to obey. But easy is relative. No one said it was suppose to be easy. In fact the Word says the way is narrow. But it comes down to this, we are called to obey.

So the questions becomes and easy one.

Will I or won’t I? My way or God’s way? My will or God’s will?

How about it church? Where are we at? Our will, or God’s will be done on earth as it is in heaven? So church, I ask you. Will we or won’t we?

 

 

 

 

The Waiting Room

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I have four kids, and have been in waiting rooms too many times to count. Even in today’s waiting room with the TVs and endless stack of magazines, it is still not a place you want to be. In reality, I don’t think there is anyone who enjoys just waiting. Whether it is at a red light, waiting for that microwave lunch dinner, or waiting for Friday’s paycheck, most of us are impatient and waiting just is not our strong suit.

I am currently in a season of waiting. Waiting on God’s timing for several things in my life and in my opinion waiting is hard! The thought of waiting of God’s timing is a simple thought, but just because something is simple, does not make it easy. Most of the time when we are waiting it is because God is getting us ready. Ready for what He has for us, and so we will be the person He needs us to be to handle what he has. In this type of season, a season of transition, there are several things we need to be careful of. We need to make sure we don’t run ahead of God. We need to make sure we don’t take God’s plans for us into our own hands. And we need to remind ourselves that God’s ways are not our ways. God’s plans for us are often bigger than we can see for ourselves. So if you are in a season of waiting, be encouraged! God’s will win out and in His timing all things will come together. In the meantime, enjoy the moments for they will never come again and know that you are protected and given the strength to wait.

Isaiah 40:31
But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.

 

Eagle’s Flight

The eagle soars on the mountain high

You too can soar and learn to fly

All that is within you, let it be free

They’re no restrictions, not even the ones you think you see

Your spirit flies high above on the wind

Your pride stays grounded, not knowing how to bend

The choice is yours, to fail to succeed,

It is up to you, either way you will bleed

Goals are set forth for some to achieve,

It is for you, if only you believe

Some people wait to follow not wanting to lead,

They wait endlessly and never succeed

But you that is not, for you that will never be,

Your spirit will lead you, for it has always been free

Though days may pass, have no fear

Your spirit flies high on the mountain and there is no fear here

Your day is coming, just around the bend

Victory is waiting, that is the stories’ end

Here is the answer, here is the way

Trust God and talk to him each and every day

And be all you can be, soar to great heights

Become an eagle and join the eagle’s flight

Leah Jacobsen

© 2000

Beyond the Breakers

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I love the ocean. There is just something about it that feels like home to me. I love it because it  reminds me of how small I am, but yet God knows every hair on my head. I was a young woman before I ever saw the ocean. I still remember stepping onto the sand with great anticipation and looking out at the horizon as far as I could see. It’s a cool thing to look out knowing there could be someone on the other side looking back. It’s cool to know God made something so big and yet knows me by name. I love the ocean and could go on and on about its diverse meanings to me, it’s symbolism, and how I have had some of my deepest moments of revelation sitting on the sand listening to the ocean roar, but today I want to share a story about the waves, or more accurately the breakers.

Anyone who knows me well, knows that when I’m at the beach I can’t stay out of the water. I often joke and tell my family and friends that long ago the ocean and I made a pact, that when I came to visit I would always come in for a swim. Well, young me didn’t think about visiting the ocean at different times of the year, say like November, so old me has swam in some very cold water. But I really wouldn’t have it any other way. Nothing is quite as soothing as a dip in the salty water, though warm salty water is better than cold salty water.

Well I say all of that to say this. Depending on the time of year and how many storms have been off shore it can be hard to get past the breakers for that nice place where it’s peaceful and you sort of just float along in sync with the waves. Sometimes getting past the breakers is quite daunting and though I am brave, there have been many times that I have turned back. Now my hubby has always been a strong swimmer and is much braver than I am and we have seen waves sets that have even been too much for him. But there is a time and place for everything. A time to stay safe on the shore, but there is also a time to face the breakers. For out there is where you can find that peaceful place where you and the waves move as one.

Life and the things of God can be like the ocean and the waves. There is a time to stay safe on the shore, but there is also a time to face the breakers. A time to face those waves, those problems and hindrances in life coming at you. We need to face them because there is peace on the other side. Sometimes we stay on the shore because it is comfortable, but in reality it is a false safety to stay in our comfort zone, and possibly the very thing that is us holding back. There is safety at the shore but freedom comes past the breakers. Our freedom, our liberties, our very lives lie past this false safety on the shore, they lie past the breakers. They lie where the ocean waves flow by and everything is calm and peaceful in the tranquility of waves of Holy Spirit. In the place where we listen to God and immediately carry out his orders. Where we truly walk in the spirit every day.

So how do we get there?

Sometimes the problem is we need to dive in instead of wade in. Often we wade in or try to go in slowly and then we can’t get past the waves. If we stay in the breakers we will become
exhausted. Fear and unbelief keeps us in the breakers, and instead going out deeper,
eventually we turn back to shore.

So how do we get there? Well, we must let God be in control.

We must hold on to God to go deeper and give up our selves. Sometimes we have to duck and go under the waves. Then we will be in the deeper section where we can hear and move with the spirit. Don’t be afraid. He is with us and we have a life jacket. He is our life jacket.

Yes there is a price to pay and the price is different for us all. But it’s worth it. It’s worth it for freedom. It’s worth it for peace. It’s worth it because we disciple those around us. It’s worth it for the call on our lives. It’s worth it because God is worth our effort. So, the real question becomes will we obey and rise to His call on our lives? When the breakers rise and, and as the waves break with power, will we rise and roar back or just stay safe on the shore?

Our Deepest Fear

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One of my favorite poems.

Our Deepest Fear
By Marianne Williamson

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate,
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.

It is our light, not our darkness, that frightens us.
We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant,
gorgeous, handsome, talented and fabulous?

Actually, who are you not to be?
You are a child of God.

Your playing small does not serve the world.
There is nothing enlightened about shrinking
so that other people won’t feel insecure around you.

We were born to make manifest the glory of God within us.
It is not just in some; it is in everyone.

And, as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give
other people permission to do the same.
As we are liberated from our fear,
our presence automatically liberates others