Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for November, 2012

Happy Hunting!

Hide and seek, an age old game where someone hides and someone seeks. It is always full of suspense and laughter as the seeker searches and the hiding players try not to give away their positions. Hiding for me is really hard though, not because I am not good at finding good places to hide but because whenever the seeker gets close I am almost always consumed with irrepressible laughter. I don’t know why that is…maybe I feel like hiding is dishonest, or maybe the thought of being found excites me and I can’t contain my anticipation. One thing is certain, I have learned that I make a much better seeker than I do a hider. I am just better at hunting the truth I guess, or maybe after spending years in the darkness I just know where all the best hiding places are and so my prey never gets away. LOL 

I don’t know why I was thinking of this tonight except that recently many people who I have encountered act and speak as if God has hidden Himself away. They seem to think that (if He exists at all) He has hidden himself so very well that either He does not want to be found or He does not care if we find Him. I think both assessments are wrong, but I remember when it was I who felt like God was either fake or not worth finding. It really is a miracle how I came to be who I am today…and now in retrospect I can see that it was not I who found Him at all but rather He who found me. 

Someday I will tell you that tale, but for now I wish to keep things simple. God is not so hard to find…if you’ll but seek then you shall find! Just don’t settle for a lie, and don’t take the easy way out, it’s a grand adventure!! 

Happy Hunting!

Read Full Post »

I love redemptive stories. I love seeing seemingly bad people encounter something or someone and have their lives so utterly shaken that they are never the same and instead become better for it. Have many of you been watching Once Upon a Time? I think Regina is in for one such transition and I am hoping that Rumple will too become (dare I say) good? Is it silly to want the “bad guys” to become good? I think it is that thing inside of me that says know one is beyond reach…the part of me that holds out in hope that even the most jaded or ruthless people can have life changing encounters with God and forever be changed for the better. I have seen it…I am it. In some ways I was one of those hopeless people, I was lost in alcohol and witchcraft before my encounter with God and when I finally surrendered my heart and my life to Him the transformation was nearly instantaneous and it was awesome. God is so faithful and so good. I was seriously lost and had I not been found I would have been doomed to spend eternity away from the very one who created me and loved me enough to humble himself and die on a cross for me. It’s mind boggling  that the very creator of the universe, the God who placed every star in all of the known space (and all of the unknown space too for that matter) would care enough about something seemingly so insignificant that He sought a way to mend the gap between us. I love You Lord God. I thank You. Thank you for showing me the beauty in my own redemptive story and giving me the faith, and hope to see even the worst “bad guy” become “good” because they had a life changing moment with you! Because You love them…and you know what, so do I…you gotta love those “Bad guys”…it’s only the transforming power of encountering Your love that could ever change anyone…and we as your disciples are called to love everyone too. I don’t have to love what they do, or how they live their lives…but I can still choose to love them because You do! I know You do because I know You loved me enough to reach down and pull me out of the deep pit I was in…and I was definitely a “Bad guy”. 

Read Full Post »

Let’s talk about something hard. Something that often gets twisted up. Something that causes such anger and sadness along with confusion, that many of you may never want to visit my page again. Do you wonder what the topic is yet? 

Discipline/ Child Training

Do I have your attention? Are you going to continue reading or are you already angry? I have some things I would like to say on this topic and so I will bravely march on. 

We live in a dark and broken world. It is a place where people often twist even the best things up until they are no longer recognizable and no longer resemble even a former shadow of the good things they were. I think the same has been done with the training and disciplining of our children.  

The Bible says that God disciplines those he loves. Now as a Christian I understand that it is because my heavenly father loves me that he would ever even bother to care enough about me to try and correct my bad behavior. I know that it is out of God’s great love and mercy for me that he painstakingly, patiently, and lovingly corrects me so that I can develop a moral character that will shine before men and set me apart as having something desirable. As a Christian I realize that God is shaping and molding me to have a heart like his, to love like he loves and to serve how he serves, he is training me to be a good example of who he is and teaching me to be kind and generous, to be selfless, and humble, to have self control and patients, to forgive and to try and just do what is right in general. If God did not love me he would not bother to teach me these things, he would not bother to train me…the same can be said in regards to parents and their earthly children. So many parents fail to consistently, patiently, lovingly, painstakingly,   faithfully, and carefully train their children.

What kind of parent are you? 

Are you the screamer? Yelling at your children to try and get them to respond in a way that you think they should? 

Are you the negotiator? Using treats, or rewards to try and get your kids to obey in the way you think? 

Are you the bully? Using force to make your child succumb to your demands. “I said sit down” (you physically push your child down). 

Are you the “Time-out” parent? Using time-out’s as a way to try and make your kid behave? 

Are you the beater or abuser? You make your kids do what you say because if they don’t they are going to pay it. 

My questions to you is do any of these really work? I don’t think that they do. But I realize that many parents feel stuck between a rock and hard place not knowing what to do. What I suggest is nothing new, it’s been around for ages, but the world has recently turned against it to such a degree that many parents are afraid to do it. Have you guessed? Yes, I suggest spanking. Now wait! Don’t freak out. I don’t mean beat your kids, I don’t mean go to the extreme and become some crazy child beating lunatic. I simply mean this, and I will give some examples now: 

A four to six month old who is learning the army crawl and maybe to actually crawl may often crawl towards the fire place. Now in my home I have a bit of stone that comes out and clearly makes a threshold for the fireplace. I trained my daughter at this tender age not to cross the threshold simply by standing by and waiting for her hand to fly out and touch it. I would then give her little hand a little flick and explain in a calm yet firm voice that the fire place was a “no”. I found that after the third or fourth time she simply ceased trying as she learned that to cross the line would lead to a very little bit of pain and a sad look from her mam-ma. Let me tell you that had I not rained her in such a manner the pain she may have suffered the first time we lit a fire would have been far worse, and I realize that many would say well why not just never light a fire. The problem is not with the fire place itself. you see what is really being trained is for my daughter to obey when I say something is a “no”. If I can consistently train her not to touch the things that may cause pain or may be broken if she is to forceful then in essence I am really training her that when I say no, she will heed my word. 

Here is another example: If I train my child to come the first time I call her then when I am out in public and she is running through a park…I can say “stop, come back here” and she will stop in her step, turn and come back to my side. Now, I am not suggesting that she is perfect, I am just suggesting that as I “tie sweet bonds of fellowship with her” and consistently train her, she will long to obey me and strive to not disappoint.

Okay, so let me re-assure some of you, if in fact anyone is still reading. A parent should never discipline or train when angry. Never spank out of anger or hard enough to do more than sting just a little bit…it does not even have to be hard enough to make a child cry as long as you are consistent to give the same consequence for each action your child will soon learn that you mean business and the you are going to win.  There are real consequences for actions in the real world so why not at home too? 

I put to you that regardless of what you may or may not be doing you are training your children in one way or another. You just either train them to be obedient, content, joyful, and helpful children or you train them to be selfish, self serving, mean, angry, dishonest, and discontent children.

Please think about what you are teaching, or not teaching to your kids. Whatever you do, follow your conscience, I know that as long as you do your best you will be doing better than many others!

If you are interested in learning more about child training and Godly parenting principles I suggest you check out http://www.nogreaterjoy.org  Just take everything they say with a grain of salt…you don’t have to do it all but recognize that they have a heart for kids and for equipping their parents to be able to properly raise them. Also please realize that as Christians we ultimately want to teach our children to lovingly obey so that they will be able to recognize the need to lovingly obey God…we see it as a way to woo them. It is always done with great care, diligence, love, and tenderness. Never, never, NEVER out of anger! 

 

 

 

Read Full Post »

Tonight

Tonight I failed you. 

Tonight I was less than I ought. 

Tonight I had frustration, and anger in my heart. 

Tonight I learned a lesson about mercy in the face of pain. 

Tonight I held me tongue when it really wanted free reign. 

Tonight I got so mad, I wanted to scream and shout, the frustration was so intense it was threatening to get out. 

Tonight I confessed my faults and as always you forgave, please help me never forget the price that has been paid. 

Tonight you spoke of your mercy, and how it’s new every day. 

Tonight you sealed my heart once more and healed me of my rage. 

Tonight…

Tonight. 

Read Full Post »

The light is so subtle as it creeps steadily through my curtains like a military force slowly advancing on it’s target. As the light comes, it dispels the darkness and I am left feeling clean and alive once more. There was a part of me that truly loved the night a long time ago…I used to prefer to live in it and instead sleep in the day, but that was before I met Him.

Before I met Him so many things were different about me. I thought that night was better than day…more mysterious, more opportunity to do things that must be hidden. It was all dark and sinister…and I loved it. I used to think that if vampires were real I could find them only in the night and with the love of blood and sex everything would be alright…I could live forever! Yes this was before the twilight craze…before vampires lived in the day. In that time I practiced witchcraft too…longing to bring true love my way…tired I guess, even then, of all the subtle games that I played trying to get what I thought I wanted. Desperately seeking for someone to find me, love me, lead me, and see me…but how could they? It was to dark to see me, I was to ugly to love, all twisted up and brokenly confused…until You.

It was night when I met You too…I ponder this now thinking You must have known that You would have to woo me back out of the night and into the light. You met me on my turf. You sought me out, and when I laid bare all that I was in those terrifyingly quite moments you took me in your arms and washed me clean. To You I was not ugly, to You I was not used, to You I was a treasure and You showed me all that I had been loosing by believing the lie that living in the night was all that I deserved. You showed me that light is stronger than darkness, and that a price had been laid on my head, like a bounty hunter You found me and said that You had already paid the lynch man off, You had surrendered the cost and if I would only accept this truth, this selfless gift then I could know what true love meant. Then, with a mind that was screaming and a heart that was beating so violently I thought it might rip free from it’s rib cage enclosure, carefully creeping on trembling toe’s painstakingly slow…you led me from darkness into glorious day, and I will never be the same!

Now my love affair is with the day, and I ache and long for the light, for the truth to shine and the lies and things that are hidden to be exposed and dispelled. Light conquers darkness, and You reign in my heart, you set me apart, you call me your own and now I am home…home in the light. I say goodbye to the night.

Read Full Post »

Dear, 

I know you read this now wondering what I will say, but is your heart beating like mine? Does your breath come in short gasps, and your hands long to grasp the handle of something that will hold you erect? I know mine are to slick with the sweat to ever hope to hold on and so I write with an urgency that eggs me on.

Who are you? The time has come that we dispel with the pleasantries and actually remove the masks that we allow only the world to see. There must be more to the both of us…a deeper walk with God? Or are you just faking with the hopes of eventually making the cut…I know that I have not always been honest, I know I have not always been real. Please forgive me for holding you at a distance to afraid to be judged…or possibly hugged? Which would be worse, I don’t know. Either way I am just awkward. 

What is this feeling? This longing in my heart to make something worthwhile, to not fall apart. Lord God I just want the works of my hand to be glorifying and and to lift up your plan. Let your light shine through me, let me not be afraid to boldly go forth and sing of your praise. 

Today is a new day, all the old days have passed. there is no going back now, and thank God for that. I don’t want to go back to where I have been, the muck and the mire were to much to be in. Who wants to hold on…it’s too good to let let go…at least of the bad, so say goodbye and let’s go!   

Life’s an adventure!

Read Full Post »

It does not make sense that in a room so full I could ever feel so alone.
Outside the room are more people still yet I have far from left a mark…
Not even a spark.
Nope no flickering flame here…
Know one can see me.
Nothing I do matters as I have no lasting effect..
No words of substance,
Nothing that makes a dent.
I am lost in my own bitter world and the armor I wear is soooo thick.
The pin prick of the fake hello you utter bounces off with such a loud revereb it makes me want to shutter.
I do kind of feel sick.
Why even acknowledge me?
You don’t really care!
I bet you would not even notice if I slipped right past..
I know you would not miss me if I just failed to ever come back…
Other people have…
Failed to come back I mean.
I don’t see anyone chasing them down
Accept maybe me.
I am hoping to share that I really care that I might understand what they are feeling…
That I too have a date with my switch blade…
At least I know it will show.
Seriously though, you make me so mad!!
What the hell is this feeling?
I can’t quite get a grab of the way it is pounding and drowning out my soul
It’s wrapped it’s claws around my skull and it’s never letting go.
The pastor says we war not against flesh and blood but against powers and principalities…
But all I know is that in the darkness everyone looks the same
 Friend or foe I just don’t know, what  can rid me of the pain…
The pain of my depression.
Then in the night when I think all is lost in the deepest and darkest despair,
A twisted breath
A shutter as death makes it’s pass over…
I breath a sigh as You pass by and block the fatal blow
I see a light
That pierces the night
It gives me sight
A glimpse if you will
Of what I might be
…why…
Because a man named Jesus died for me…
Except He’s more than a man
He’s God’s ultimate plan!
And He came to set the captives free!
Don’t you see, it’s in Him I find my face
He knows my true insides and does not turn away.
To Him I am beautiful
He has made me clean!
Even now the depression is just a fleeting thing…
A  whisp of a memory.

 

Read Full Post »