Thursday, December 22, 2011

True Love defines love as a profoundly tender, passionate affection for another person.

Love...a small word with a big meaning. 

"Love is the greatest thing in the world. 1 COR teaches us that love should be number one on our spiritual priority list. We should study love, pray about love, and develop the fruit of love by practicing loving others. We learn in Galatians 5:22-23 that love is one of the nine fruits of the Spirit available to those in whom God's Holy Spirit lives. God is love, so when we walk in His love we abide in Him. Because we walk in God's love by receiving and expressing it, we should not deceive ourselves into thinking we can love God while we hate other people (see John 4:20). We seek many things during our lifetimes, hoping to find fulfillment in them. But without love, these things fall short of the desired goal. When we put our time and energy into things that do not fulfill us, we feel frustrated. Love is the best thing we can commit our life to. It took me about forty-five years to realize that my priorities were mixed up and that love was not the main thing in my life. It was not my first priority, but it needed to be. The commitment to learn how to walk in love has been the single best decision I have ever made as a Christian. Love not only blesses others; it also blesses the one doing the loving. Concentrating on being a blessing to others has brought me joy. I find it exciting. All of us need to become students of love, excelling in the most important quality of all--love." Excerpt from Joyce Meyer Everyday Life, Amplified Bible.

One morning while out having breakfast I saw a sweet lady who has watched me grow up and who is dear to my heart. Her name is Dot Phillips. Sister Dot recently lost her husband about a month and half ago, but when I see her she seems to be good spirits. I admire that so much. This is a lady where there is no question about her faith and walk with the Lord. Anyway, she proceeds to ask me if I'm married. I reply by saying no. Then she goes on to impart in me some wisdom. What she spoke to me was so beautiful and it made my heart melt. It was her love story. She didn't marry until she was in her thirties. She goes on to say how she dated men, but she could tell that nothing serious would come out of them.One of the young men that she had been dating, actually got up the courage to propose to her, but knowing in her heart that he was not the one. She said that when she finally met Paul, (her late husband) she knew that instant that he was the one. However, she wasn't sure if he was really ready to become serious with her. So she confronts Paul and a week later he calls her up. Then almost fifty-eight years later...well, the rest is beautiful memories. 

What saddens me for this precious lady is that she is not going to get her husband back, at least not here on earth. What gives me hope is that she holds in her heart a much greater love for Jesus Christ. She can't wait to meet Him face to face. I'm now in my mid-twenties and I wonder if God will bless me with a wonderful man, who serves wholeheartedly after Him. I want to be assured that when it happens that I'll know!!! Just like Sister Phillips had said how she knew, that's what I want. No guessing allowed anymore...I WILL KNOW!!

There is one thing I do know for sure; there is a much greater love for me. I thank God for this love. God's love is unconditional. God will be only one to ever fully satisfy. No husband, No wife can ever fully satisfy their spouse like God can. 

God is love!
He loves you!
He loves me!
He loves you and me!

You might say why? You might say how?

Because He gave His life, what more could He give?

The ultimate sacrifice displayed his unconditional love for us all.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

The Ride of a Lifetime

Life is just a roller-coaster.

Most of us have been to Six Flags or some major theme park. We have stood in those long lines to ride every ride possible, including the roller-coasters. Anyone, not just Christians, would tell you that there are times in their life when all seems fine and dandy; everything is running smoothly. Then without any warning you begin to fall. Your life is accelerating right before your very eyes and you have no way of stopping it. However, you didn't begin here at this ride. You started off with a few turns, maybe it felt a little jerky, but for the most part it was easy.

Let's take for instance the Mine Train at Six Flags. Some people might say it's a kid ride, but really the adults can ride it all they want and don't have to have any kids. To be completely honest, it's my favorite coaster. Why? As I said before, it's easy. We want our lives to go as easy as possible. There's no going upside-down. So it has a few jerks and turns in the middle, but in a nutshell that's what life is. Just as long as we get to where we are going and get there safely, we're fine.

Now let's take it to another level. Most people have to have their adrenaline ran as fast as it can go. Who knows, the ride is called the Scream Machine. Still considered basic and easy, but there's a little added to the ride. On this ride, the straight path on lasts for a few seconds. You see that the ride is about to head up-hill, but you don't really know for sure what will happen once you get to the top. The cart is climbing up the hill and maybe it feels like it's taking forever, but you know that it has to go somewhere; it can't just stay up there on top. You know that it has to come down. Without any warning, the ride begins with its nose in a downward position and accelerates to 57 mph. Your heart is pounding. Just when you think it's over, here comes another hill. There is no turning back, you must climb it. However, when all is said and done, you've made it through, but the day isn't over yet. There is still so much more to see and do.

So far, the rides of our life have been a little challenging, but basic. It was not anything we could not handle.We catch our breath. Our heart-rates come back down to normal and we move on. Husband is working full-time, coming home when he says he'll be home. Your children are listening to you, not giving you any grief. Everyone is getting involved with church and their surrounding community. Life is going great.You think to yourself that life can't get any better. You thank God for what he's already brought you through. However, you have to know that if you want to continue in God and doing it all His way, the ride is not over.

The next stage might seem to start off the the same way like in the beginning, slow, steady, comfortable, but God won't do the same thing for you as He does for someone else. You experience the light turns, the ups and downs, but now you notice something different ahead. It's something that you would have never seen coming. Life throws you upside-down. We all know that with roller-coasters, turning upside-down only last for a second then its over.

It took me a long time to get on a ride that went upside-down. Why? I had this fear that it would stop right in the middle of the turn. I was afraid of getting stuck in the upside-down position and that the safety bar would give out. Then at that point I would fall out head first and be seriously hurt or worse, it would kill me. To this day I do not ride a roller-coaster that goes upside down if it has a lap safety bar. I remember going to Six Flags and finally riding a ride that I felt secure within its safety hold. That ride was the Batman.

The Batman is an interesting ride. You are in a seated position, but this time your feet dangle. If you're like me, you would rather have your feet dangle than your head dangle. Another interesting point is it has a different turn technique. Yeah, it goes up and own a bit. It has a curve or two and it goes upside-down. So what's this different technique? Towards the middle of the ride, you feel like your life has just taken a very screwy turn. The Batman ride has a corkscrew turn in it. It's very quick, but you can't miss it.

As I said in the beginning, life is a roller-coaster. We start off basic and easy, but the more we get closer to God, the more twists, and turns, and upside-down's of life are going to come at much faster rate. Don't give up hope though because you're afraid. They only last a second or two. I know that in real life, time may be more than a second, but in God's eyes a day is like a 1000 years. So what may take a couple hours or days to solve or even get through, it's still not that long of a ride. You will get through it. "If God is for us, then who can be against us?"

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Forgiving Me

Forgiving others seems simple, but when it comes to forgiving yourself it can be difficult. We have our fears, our doubts, and our insecurities. I have done things in my life that I do regret; some things more than others. However, what I have realized is that everything boils down to one thing: PRIDE! It's all about me. Pride was and is the original sin.
God loves me and has always loved me; He will continue to love me. I am just as deserving to be loved. As long as I have breath, my life belongs to Him. As long as I have breath, He will always love me and I will always love Him.
Forgiveness is not always easy. There have been people in my life that I have looked up to and they in return completely let me down. There is no excuse for his or her actions. They made their choice, but what I am having to learn is that I DO NOT have to make that same choice. However, I'm choosing not to make that choice because I'm too afraid to even take that step.
I've been afraid of things. I've even been afraid that certain things not happening such as weight loss, getting married, becoming pregnant. I pondered on these things because I thought God would punish me for the sin that I did. But God... I seek Him, he finds me. I cry out to Him. With my whole heart I repented and asked God for His forgiveness. I'm trying to be a better daughter, a better sister, a better friend, etc. With God all things are possible. I love what Romans 8:28 says, "He makes all things work together for your good." I like to take scripture and personalize it for my own life and walk with the Lord. "He makes ALL things work together for MY good."
It is so easy to say that we need to trust God. It's easy to say that we do trust God, but do we really? In some areas of my life I do, but in other areas I don't know if I do. I carry some doubts. So in saying this: You either trust God or you don't. I choose to trust Him. I also choose to fully believe that He has forgiven me, just like a Father does, and I choose to believe that I have forgiven myself.