I wanted to express my gratitude for those of you who follow, comment, rate, or otherwise leave lasting footprints on my blog. Thank you so much! I believe God led you here, not only for encouragement, but to encourage me as well. As I’m sure you know, writing a blog is not always an easy task. Life has a way of burrowing in with weighty demands sometimes. I thank you for taking the time to visit!
I also wanted to share some things going on that God is still working on, brought us through, moving us toward…I’ve mentioned in the past about a hiccup our family went through earlier this year. For those of you who held us in prayer, thank you! We thought that hiccup would never end, but knowing others were praying for us helped us persevere while facing the wind. Satan tried to tear our family apart, but God was, is and always will be the glue that holds us together!
My husband and I own a small business, we are still learning how to get our business in the brains of people. God has blessed our business, and we are grateful for the people that have stood with us and prayed for us since we opened in 2012. We believe God for more business and the opportunity to mentor and apprentice others in the skilled field while creating viable jobs in our area. Our steps may be small, but when our feet are on God’s feet as we walk, those steps are sure and sturdy and right.
Even though we own a small business, we both also work full-time jobs outside the home. I recently was notified of steps being taken to promote me again in the future. I am grateful to God for my job, I work alongside a diverse group of people with different belief systems and He has given me many opportunities to speak into the lives of my co-workers. I can attest to love going much farther than canned evangelistic tactics designed to condemn. I love each and every person I work with, and while they may not agree with my Jesus right now, I still thank God for them and pray for them. After three+ years, we now have deeper theological conversations than when I first started, and I am grateful for the foundation being laid. I know God has touched them and is working on them. I don’t have to see it with my own eyes, because I know my GOD!
Last year, I started attending an online bible school, http://christianleadersinstitute.org, and have been working toward a ministerial degree. I love the idea of everything being online and structured like a regular class, however I sometimes have difficulty balancing this with everything else. God has been gracious enough to always give me time and to extend the time I do have. I am thankful for His time management skills because far too often mine fall short.
Speaking of time management, I am an avid yarn-crafter. I crochet better than I knit, but I love the look of knitting for certain items. This year, I decided to make hand-made gifts for most of my Christmas list. Please pray I am able to accomplish such a momentous task, as I will need to ship some items overseas and across the continent. I have always found crocheting and knitting to be cathartic and there is something stilling about keeping a stitch count. I am able to hear God so much clearer when my mind is concentrating on one thing, instead of many things at once. This is also the reason why He shows me things and speaks to me while I am driving. 😉 I recently discovered text-to-speech on my Kindle and have begun listening to either the Bible or a bible resource book while crafting. I am grateful to the Holy Spirit for giving me the inspiration to check for this option on my Kindle!
God has given me a spark for my third book and I am looking forward to putting it together in 2015. I’m not entirely sure what it will look like, I’m trusting Him for that, but I do know it will be a mixture of things previously published here on my blog, and original content. As to whether or not I will self-publish with a hard copy and an eBook, I don’t know yet. I’ve noticed that my books sell better as an eBook than as a printed copy. Please pray for me through this process and pray for me to increase my marketing skills. One thing I am not very adept at is marketing my own books.
Every time I think of you, I give thanks to my God (Philippians 1:3 NLT). Thank you, again, for stopping by. May your day be abundantly blessed in all you do, and may those blessings continue day after day in such a way that you are able to pour them out and give them to others.
LISTEN FOR YOURSELF FIRST
Then he added, “Son of man, let all my words sink deep into your own heart first. Listen to them carefully for yourself (Ezekiel 3:10 New Living Translation).
Over the years I’ve heard sermons and studied the Scriptures while thinking to myself, “so and so really should read this” or “this is meant for so and so”. I’m sure at times this is something we’ve all done. It’s not a bad thing because God may want us to share these words with the other person in some way; however, we should always examine ourselves by the light of that very same word first. It should penetrate and illuminate our hearts before we release it.
It can be very easy to take Scriptural truths and see where they illuminate situations or a problem in others lives, but sometimes we forget to apply this truth to ourselves. It’s always easy to see the specks in our brother or sister’s eye and fail to see the plank hindering our own vision. By letting God’s word sink deep into our own hearts first and listening to them carefully for ourselves, we have a light by which to see what hinders our sight and we have the way to correct our vision.
Let’s Pray: Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for Your word. Thank You for the light it brings to our hearts and for the truth that it shines there. Thank You for giving us something by which to examine ourselves with, and we pray that we take Your word and apply it to our lives. May we not only be hearers of Your word, but be doers as well. Father, we love You and seek to please You, may we not release words until we have carefully listened to them for ourselves first. We give You all glory and honor, in Jesus’ name. Amen.
Today’s Attitude of Worship: We must be willing to give ourselves a heart check before we open our mouths. When hearing a word that brings to mind someone else, we should be asking the Holy Spirit, where, if applicable, that word fits into our life.
Additional Scriptures: Matthew 7:3-5; Ezekiel 3:10-11; James 1:22-25
“Having an attitude of gratitude enables me to count my actual blessings, as well as those things I may not see as blessings. My attitude determines my outcome in every situation, for I reap what I sow. I have set my heart to sow gratitude and love.”
Walk with gratitude today!
“Christ shows Himself strong in my weakness, and His grace is sufficient for me. When I am unsure of things, it’s best to simply sit back and enjoy the journey as He carries me.”
Let yourself be carried.
“Jesus is my High Priest, He intercedes on my behalf. He also understands every suffering and testing I go through, since he himself has gone through suffering and testing. Because of this, He is able to help me through my times of suffering and testing. There is nothing I go through that the God of all comfort does not understand.”
Walk knowing you are not alone today.
“I may be hard-pressed on every side, but I am not crushed; I may be perplexed, but I do not despair; I may be persecuted, but I am not forsaken; I may be struck down, but I am not destroyed. This process makes me the perfect vessel for Jesus to work through.”
Walk tall today!
“This is the day the Lord has made, I will rejoice and be glad in it! I may get knocked down, but My God keeps me from being knocked out! His righteous Right Hand upholds me, and He directs my steps. That ol devil thinks he can take me out? Well, he’s wrong and already defeated. My faith increases day by day when I look around and see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living!”
Walk strong today!
Yesterday while driving to work I was at a stop light and watching the cars cross the intersection when I began to see each car as a bulldozer. Every car on the road after that was a bulldozer and I said “Ok, Lord, where are You going with this one?” and started paying closer attention.
This morning, not only did I continue to see bulldozers, but amongst them I began to see walls, wrecking balls and construction hats on people. I saw the wrecking balls swing, bringing down the walls and then the bulldozers moved into place to push the rubble out of the way.
I hear the Lord say “I AM the Wrecker of your carefully built stronghold. The walls you have constructed around you are not there to keep you protected, you have built them based on lies you allowed yourself to believe. Your walls were erected because you felt the need to withdraw and protect yourself, but I AM telling you, the walls were strategically built to keep you in. I AM bringing destruction to the walls, no longer will you be hidden behind them, no longer will you live with a false sense of security. Stand still and see the deliverance of the LORD! I am breaking down the stronghold and building you up on the Rock of Christ, the solid foundation, the Chief Cornerstone! This wall I AM building with you is one of liberty. I have set you free, released you from prison and broken down the wall of lies. Do not be afraid of the landscape before you, keep your eyes on the work I AM doing and remain hidden in the shadow of My wings.”
He will break down every high tower and every fortified wall (Isaiah 2:15 NLT).
Unless the Lord builds the house, they labor in vain who build it; unless the Lord guards the city, the watchman stays awake in vain (Psalm 127:1).
“I can never praise the Lord enough! He remembers me and shows me favor, He comes near and rescues me from affliction. I share in the prosperity of His chosen ones, I rejoice in the joy of His people, I praise Him with those He calls His.”
Walk with praise on your lips and joy in your heart!
My morning drive is when my Father and I chat. It is during these times when I “see” some pretty amazing things, and “hear” what He’s saying. This morning was no different.
As I was driving, I saw fiery sparks move across the road from west to east. They blanketed the roadway, but were in constant motion. Immediately “My God is a consuming fire” came to mind. Yes! He is! I saw the sparks and then fire. In the wake of the fire I saw charred destruction, and then I saw fresh new growth spring up. As I drove and watched the imagery, I heard Him speak.
He said, “I AM a consuming fire. Understand today that I, the Lord your God, is He who also goes before you as a consuming fire. I WILL destroy your enemies, bringing them down before you. I AM burning away the chaff in your life, that which is not necessary for MY purpose, that which is hindering your walk with Me, that which seeks to keep you bound and busy. I AM blowing away the cobwebs of deception and doubt in your mind. I AM a consuming fire, devouring My enemies, but My Flame does not harm that which is mine, it refines it. Hold to My Word, I will walk with you through fire, I will refine you by fire, I will consume your heart with fire. Do not look with natural eyes, keep your eyes kingdom focused and you will understand the importance of My work. Partner with Me and trust Me to burn away and reveal the beauty underneath. I AM releasing the wind of My Spirit to move and usher in the wave of MY Glory. You are born of the Spirit, let My wind carry you and My Love sustain you.”
For our God is a consuming fire (Hebrews 12:29 NKJV).
I, the Lord of Heaven’s Armies, will act for you with thunder and earthquake and great noise, with whirlwind and storm and consuming fire (Isaiah 29:6 NLT).
The wind blows wherever it wants. Just as you can hear the wind but can’t tell where it comes from or where it is going, so you can’t explain how people are born of the Spirit (John 3:8).
He is ready to separate the chaff from the wheat with his winnowing fork. Then he will clean up the threshing area, gathering the wheat into his barn but burning the chaff with never-ending fire (Luke 3:17).