Tag Archives: faith

An Appointment With God.

It is honestly hard to be as raw and real as this post will be. Because, I am a positive girl. I take captive thoughts that drain me, that aren’t good for me, and I’m usually really good at making those thoughts obedient to truth. Obedient to the fact that His ways are good and perfect. To the truth that all things work together for the good. ALL things. But, I have struggled these past two months. I haven’t struggled in knowing He is good. But, I have struggled with sadness and disappointment.

For a while, I kept calling it sadness. I am saddened by the immense loss I feel from losing people close to me. I am saddened by the hands some have been dealt undeservingly. I am saddened that I have not done the things personally I know I need to do. I am saddened that any child would feel any amount of love that is less than what my own children feel. I am saddened by the suffering others endure. I am saddened there is a family of seven wondering about their next meal. Grief upon grief. Layered one on top of the other. I have cried, almost daily, overwhelmed by it all.

Sunday night, I poured myself out to Kris. I emptied it all. “I am sad,” I told him. And, the more I shared, the more I realized that my sadness was really disappointment. I looked at Kris and finally said, “I am disappointed in this year.” I have been ready for it to end. I am ready for something new. Something different. I told him that maybe we don’t give grief its proper respect. We know loss is a part of the human experience. We grieve. We cry. But, maybe we underestimate the reality of how that loss affects our daily lives. We don’t give it the credence it’s due. Instead, we try to find the good instead of feeling what is really there.

These have been my feelings. This has been my burden. This has been my past two months.

But the ability to finally identify what I feel and call it disappointment finally changed how I see today. How I see tomorrow. If we wallow in our disappointment, it will kill our passion. It will hinder in my own life the greatest forces in this world: faith, hope, and love.

I am of reminded of a message my dad preached so many years ago. He talked about Samson. Samson forgot who he was. He was disappointed in his choices, in the world he had framed, in the promise he thought was lost. Until one day, he felt his hair touching his shoulders, and he remembered. He remembered his strength…he remembered the living, breathing force within him. He remembered the promise. He remembered who he was. And, he knew in that moment: for every disappointment in life is an appointment with God. And, that changed everything.

For every disappointment is an appointment with God. It’s a reckoning. It’s where we feel what we need to feel. Where we allow grief to be what it is. Where we allow disappointment to be what it is. But, there comes a day when, like Samson, we are reminded of our strength. We are reminded that we have a choice. We can stay in disappointment or we can allow it to thrust us forward. Where we connect the dots. Where we remember who we are. Where we use the very thing that disappointed us to push us forward to do the work He has called us to do.

We can hold fast to faith that screams He is able to do more than we can imagine. Faith that opens our eyes to see the unseen. We can trust in the hope that anchors our very soul. That secures us. That keeps us from tossing to and fro when the waves come. When the disappointments come. And, we can cling to love: who we really are. We can love ourselves so deeply that we actually let ourselves off the hook when we don’t live up to what we hoped we would do and be. We can love others with such intensity that nothing they do can ever taint how we see them: real, living souls who are images of God in the earth.

Kris texted me this morning, “So many times we forget what we are passionate about. Your passions are so powerful, and your words are so impactful. You miss just how awesome you are. Life is good, life is hard, and it’s our faith that will keep us strong. Stop holding back. Stop being afraid. You can do it. No matter what it is.” These were the words that pulled me out of my disappointment. And, this was the time God chose to do it. Because, Kris was God in the moment. In this time.

I felt my strength again this morning. And, I remembered. I remembered my passions. I remembered who I was. And, I remembered that I have an appointment with God.

I have an appointment with myself. An appointment to renew what needs to be renewed. And a mission to bring faith, hope, and love to the forefront of people’s lives.

Friends, to you I say: Stop holding back. Stop being afraid. You can do it. No matter what it is. Because, you have the three greatest forces moving towards you in your favor: faith, hope and love. Don’t miss how awesome you are. Don’t stay in disappointment. Trust in the hope that assures us nothing is ever truly lost. The hope that assures us the best is always ahead.

Today is going to be a good day.

1 Comment

Filed under disappointment, God Stuff, life, making an impact, Spiritual Journey, Uncategorized

Questions That Catch Me By Surprise.

Anna:  Why does Johnry get to have two dads, and I only have one? 

Me:  Well, Anna……

John Henry:  Anna, it’s hard to explain.

John Henry was right.  It is hard to explain to a five year old.  But, I did explain why to her in the most effective way she could understand.  She went on about her day without mention of our conversation. 

It’s just her way.  She has always accepted our answers and explanations to deep questions and thoughts without  need for further discussion.  It’s the small stuff she struggles in.  Like why she can’t wear flip flops and shorts in a painful 10 degree wind chill.  Because, it isn’t cold.  To her

But, the big stuff?  She is my sponge.  “Mom, when we do something bad, God forgives us right away.” 

She knows this is true.  I’ve told her so.  And, she believes it. 

“No one is more powerful than God, Mom.”

And, my recent favorite:  “God can do a back flip better than anybody.”

Some questions catch me by surprise.  But, she listens to my answers.  Then, she’s okay.  She is learning to build her hope on nothing less than Jesus Christ.  She’s learning to filter every explanation through that hope. 

I love her acceptance.  I love her faith.  It doesn’t matter that she questions me on why wearing a purple bandana on her head is not appropriate all of the time. 

Having faith does matter. 

I tell her all of the time that she’s my favorite girl.

She really is.

2 Comments

Filed under divorce, God Stuff, Kid Stuff, Motherhood

No Matter.

God can do anything, you know—far more than you could ever imagine or guess or request in your wildest dreams! He does it not by pushing us around but by working within us, his Spirit deeply and gently within us.  Ephesians 3:20 (The Message)

I love this scripture.  I especially love The Message translation. 

Yet still I sometimes overlook it.

Then, I discover it again.  And, I pray that this time, it will remain written on my heart.

Because, it is foundational to my faith.

To my life.

It is hope.

It is truth.

And, we need not forget.

That no matter what place we are in.

No matter how fiercely our battles wage.

No matter what the report reads.

No matter how high the mountain is.

No matter how long the walk through the valley takes.

No matter.

God can do anything, you know.

4 Comments

Filed under disappointment, God Stuff

The Faith Life.

I asked John Henry last night what he is learning or wants to learn about God right now.  His answer?

FAITH.

“What is faith?”  I asked him.

“I don’t really know,” he said.

So, I explained to him “the substance of things hoped for and evidence of things not seen” in terms his six year old mind can understand.

Several years ago, my dad gave me a book called The Real Faith by Charles S. Price.  Price states, “You can’t have faith without results any more than you can have motion without movement.”

I fail to walk in this kind of faith every day.  Sorry to disappoint.  But, I have learned a key to my faith life is my talk life.  That’s right.  My talk life.  Joshua 1:8 says “Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it.”  Both scripture and human experience teaches us the power of our words.  So, when our hearts are full of God’s Word, then we are always armed and ready to encounter any threat to our faith.

Whether it’s bad news or a just a bad day. 

My talk life and faith life aren’t perfect.  But, I know the more I fall in love with His Word, the more I will walk by faith.

1 Comment

Filed under God Stuff, Spiritual Journey

Doubting Dusty


“I will lead the blind by ways they have not known, along unfamiliar paths I will guide them; I will turn the darkness into light before them and make the rough places smooth. These are the things I will do; I will not forsake them.”
Isaiah 42:16

I read this scripture yesterday.  I re-read it.  I read it again.  And again.  Just to make sure I believed it.

I really have no reason to not believe that God makes the rough places smooth.  That He never leaves us or forsakes us.  I’ve never experienced His abandonment in all my thirty-four years.

Still, I go through times where I have to say, “Lord, help me with my unbelief.” 

I stand.  I wait.  I trust.  Then, He takes too long. 

But, His timing is perfect.  And, in the meantime, when it seems the things around you are slowly crumbling, know that He holds all things together. 

So, when in doubt, read His word.  Re-read it.  Read it again.  And again.

He makes good on His promises.  And, He will never leave us.  As a matter of fact, He will never give up on us either.  I must wear Him out.

Except, He probably doesn’t get tired.  That IS scripture.  Right, Dad?

8 Comments

Filed under God Stuff, Spiritual Journey

Waiting


My recent faith journey has been a good one.  I’ve seen little miracles along the way, but I still haven’t climbed out of the “dip”, if you know what I mean.  I’ve been saying all the right things.  Praying all the right prayers.  Speaking words of life.  You get the picture. 

And, then I just get plain frustrated.

I question.

I regress.

My friend and prayer warrior, Lynn, reminded me of this scripture the other day:  “But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength.  They shall mount up with wings as eagles.  They shall run and not grow weary.  They shall walk and not faint.”  Isaiah 40:31

(By the way, not many can pray like my dear friend, Lynn).

So what does it mean to wait?  I did a little research, ya’ll.

The word “wait” comes from the Hebrew word, “qavah”  (kaw-vaw’).  You kind of sound like a bird when you say it, don’t you?  It translates “to wait, look for, hope, expect.” 

Apparently, I’m not a very good waiter – in life nor in restaurants, I’m sure.

We’re going to have bumps in the road.  Our faith is going to be tested.  But be of good cheer – He has overcome the world.  So you can bet your bottom dollar (whatever that means) that He will pull you through whatever hard-hitting time is staring you in the face.  And, when you get discouraged – wait.  Hope.  Expect.  And, trust.  Remember the other times in your life when He came through – the other times where He made a way where there seemed to be no way.  This time will be no different.

When we wait upon Him, He renews our strength.  Waiting without Him wears us out.  I’ll stick with Him.  You?

6 Comments

Filed under Spiritual Journey

Women who have influenced me. (2 of 5)

Judy Young

Judy came into my life when I was only three years old.  Her daughter, Bonnie, has been my best friend since we were tots which pretty much crowns Judy as my second mom.  I’m sure she’s worn that crown proudly.  For real.

Judy has experienced everything with me from the loss of my first tooth to the birth of my firstborn.  She has cleaned up my messes, played games with me (this was no sacrifice – she loved to play more than I), watched me become mesmerized with Tinker Bell flying from atop of the Disney castle, and loved on me like her own.  All of this by itself is enough to make her shine in my life, but she has been more.

She believes big.  I mean really big.  Her faith is big.  She not only believes big for little ole’ me, but she believes big for the local church.  She loves the local church more than anyone I have ever known.  I have never, EVER heard her criticize the church.  She only speaks positive and powerful affirmations over the house of God.  You see, Judy believes that God really does live in the local church.  And, that’s just cool.  

She understands that God is truly in control.  And, she believes that the best is yet to come – always.

She’s called me many affectionate names over my lifetime, but for the past few years, she has come to call me “Grasshopper”.  She believes that God uses me and wants to continue to use me.  Oh, I get weekly e-mails where she gently pushes me into all that God has for me.  She dreams big and believes big. 

There is no one like her.   I’m beyond grateful that she has imparted to me the gift of BIG.  And, this little grasshopper loves her big.

5 Comments

Filed under God Stuff, Relationships, Spiritual Journey