Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Personal Consecration

Often God will blend what I am learning in Bible study, sermons, and Sunday school lessons with what He is saying to me in my QT. God wants to get His point across and He wants us to hear it and assimilate it into our lives; so He repeats it over and over again. During my recent “retreat” God showed me the two areas in my life that I have lost control in; or rather where I have been drowning in self-defeat. I knew since the beginning of the year that there was something hindering me from climbing higher but could not put my finger on it. I continued to seek and finally I have seen the light.

1 Cor. 6:12 All things are lawful for me, but all things are not helpful. All things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any. “

I like the way another translation puts it, “…All things are permissible for me, but all things are not beneficial...” The one word for “brought under the power’ is exousiazo and it means “to be ruled by or be under the power of, to be in bondage to.” I have allowed myself to be ruled by these two areas I mentioned above. They control me instead of me being in control through the power and authority of the Holy Spirit. I have surrendered power to the enemy. The enemy can be my flesh, our world or Satan. Whichever the enemy is, they can only rule in a Believers life where we have invited them in. For me it is all about making the right choices; ruling over my responses, emotions, time, what is best instead of what I want….

Proverbs 25:28 “ Whoever has no rule over his own spirit Is like a city broken down, without walls.”

The word for wall is chowmah and it means “a wall of protection.”

Walls were for protection from the enemy. Walls are for my protection. Self-control is my wall of protection. Self-control is the ability to make choices, the right choices at the right time. As I make the right choices I then invite the Holy Spirit to rule and have authority over me. I am surrendering to my power to Him. Any area in my life where I am consistently out-of-control is an open invitation for the enemy to rob me, defeat me and break me down. No more! I want to live in victory.

Today is day one of 40. I have committed to consecrate myself for this period of time wholly to the Lord that I might learn self-control specifically in these two areas. Wow, now I have gone and done it. I know I need accountability. I know that I must seek Him first and daily receive His grace that is sufficient for each day. One day at a time I will find victory.

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Treasuring His Word

Staying accountable....

I have memorized Isaiah 33:6 and Proverbs 2:1-5 and will continue to weekly review theses as well as keep them in my prayers.

For the first part of February God has brought me back to a passage He gave me during the time of our church-wide call to fasting and prayer:
Isaiah 43:18-19 (NKJV)
"Do not remember the former things,
Nor consider the things of old.
Behold, I will do a new thing,
Now it shall spring forth;
Shall you not know it?
I will even make a road in the wilderness
And rivers in the desert."

This is not only the direction God has given for the church but for me personally. Anybody else out there hiding His Word in your heart so that you won't sin against Him? Feel free to share.

I have learned that memorizing His Word is most fruitful and effective when the passage is in areas of need in our personal lives. I am excited that He has something new for me and I want my hands free so that I can grab hold of it when it comes to me. If I am holding on to something from the past they won't be free for the new thing.

Before I go for the day I wanted to publicly brag on my Jesus. He is truly the gift that gives and keeps on giving. This morning I awakened to snow. Yet again He has shown me great favor. Can anyone do what He can do? Can earthly artists create the beauty He displays? He creates beauty out of nothing. They still need to use His colors, His tools, and what do they paint? His world. Can anyone have thought up the creation He has bestowed upon us? Camels? Zebras? Katydid's? Blueridge and Smokey Mountains? Niagra Falls? Daisy's? Venus Fly Trap? That is only a smidgen of the visual beauty He has granted; what about the smells? Roses, Bread cooking, and skunks very own special aroma. I didn't say all smells are pleasant but to that Skunk it is his protection and God did it on purpose. His purpose is brilliant and pure creative genius. Praise Him, He thinks of everything! And what about sounds? Thunder, infant cries, our own voices, winds rustling through the trees, rain falling, the laughter of children who really get the giggles! Amazing. And then let's not leave out touch. The soft fur of animals...one day I would love to hug a lion but I am willing to wait until He says it is safe. The roughness of bark on trees, the squeezing of fat baby cheeks (both kinds!) The warmth soft fleece and itchy wool brings. He did it all! His imagination is wild; and I am wild about Him.

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Staying Accountable

Just finished my second book for January...ok I an a few days into February but I was also reading another book at the same time that I should be able to finish this week as well.

Satisfy My Thirst Soul by Linda Dillow

Linda Dillow has been a favorite author of mine for years. In fact her Creative Counterpart has been the book I have encouraged new brides to read for years. My copy is falling apart on my book shelf.

I recommend reading Satisfy My Thirsty Soul to all those who are looking for practical ways to deepen your worship in your daily lives. Dillow first shares about worship in general and how she was awakened to more intimate and fulfilling worship. She then shares about how to worship in our life, words, work, attitude, waiting, pain and our wills. She gives very practical ways to enjoy His presence.

Spiritual Retreat

I awoke this morning around 6:30; it was cold and the bed was warm. As I always do, I quickly ran to the window to see if there was any snow. No snow but the wind was hurling. I jumped back in bed to hear God asking me what I was doing. Huh? "I have something for you to see" was what He said to me. Now? It isn't even light out. That was His point. Then I heard Him whisper, "You don't want to miss this." He knows exactly how to get to me, I never want to miss anything. I jumped up got the water getting hot for hot chocolate. dressed twice...needed two layers on. I left the room knowing exactly where He wanted me to head...our Mt. top. I left the hot chocolate in the room and proof (camera) that I really did get up this early.

When I arrived there was a scene of beauty. Colors streamed across the tops of the peaks of the mountains and them a thin thread of clouds above that. It was gorgeous but I new the climax hadn't even happened yet. I had to get back in the car to warm up a few times. One time as I was worshiping Him in the car It was like He said, "Let me show you something else while you get warm." The trees all around me started swaying, bowing low almost to the ground. It was so graceful and very appropriate for them to bow before their Creator. Back out to see the sunrise. There she was, the sun slowly inching her way above the mountain tops. All the colors now concentrated in her. Everything is shadowed now by her presence. She has arrived and the whole world is in awe. I stood in awe.

I thought about the Son. How he "set" in the dark grave but then He "arose." Everyday is a reminder to us all that the Son arose. He arose to sit in His proper place; above all. I wondered about His return and what it would look like. I praised Him for being the Light of the World and the Light in my world. I thanked Him for bringing to me personally sunshine. I thanked Him for not letting me miss His personal display of beauty just for me. I let Him know I loved the workmanship and the Designer. For the rest of the day I will be setting with the Son.

Monday, February 02, 2009

Spiritual Retreat

Though the day is just half over my cup rennet over. God first showed me a favor by having Texas BBQ for lunch, in North Carolina. Again I gleam at His personal touch in my life. I don't want to take anything for granted. Thank-You Jesus for a great lunch.

I have been to the top of the mountain. Literally I've been to the top of the mountain. I thanked God all day and night for "our place" by the stream yesterday. This morning on the way to breakfast I sensed He had another place in mind for today's visit. I had thought He would take me to the fire-pit but when I got there He clearly said it was not the place He had chosen. He said,"Go up." I drove up and up; pass the gym, pass the ball field, pass the putt-putt and then up and around and up and around and up and up some more. Then there it was....the most beautiful view of mountain peeks spread out before me. The clouds looked like He had ran His fingers through them and then shook them to let drops falls all on top of the peeks. It was as if He was saying to me, "What do you think about this?" And yes, ladies I did find myself applauding His beauty, and creative genius. I bowed on my knees right there and prayed with eyes wide open to His glory before me. I prayed, confessed, cried and praised Him and then I started all over again.

Then it was time to listen to Him. Again His Word jumped off the page and into my heart. Today He is to me Jehovah Rapha, The LORD who heals. I know that my healing will come only through His Word. It is a scaple (two-edged sword) in the hands of a careful and caring Great Physician. It will cut but it will also cleanse and renew. Healing will not only bring good health but also victory and freedom.

Therefore, I come to You Jehovah Rapha willing to lay myself before Your skillful hands. Remove all "filthiness and overflowing of wickedness" and then "implant Your Word." I will also continue to take my medicine, Your Word mixed with faith so that the healing will continue to be effective in my daily living. Daily I will come to You for proper treatment and continual cleansing that I may remain free and victorious over the sin that can so easily beset me. I will trust You.

Sunday, February 01, 2009

Spiritual Retreat

I am at Ridgecrest. I got here around 3:45 today and will remain here until around 2:30 Tuesday afternoon. For those of you who have had the great privilege of a trip to Ridgecrest you know how blessed I am. Then add to that I am one of only 14 people here. My husband gave me these few days away with his blessing. He could tell I was needing some time alone with Jesus, the Lover of my soul. He is truly wonderful to me. Thank you, honey.

After I arrived and nested in my room I changed out of my church clothes and into my hiking garb, cap and all. I found a wonderful secluded place in the prayer garden by a gentle stream. God is so very good and personal to me. He knows how much I like streams and rivers and so He provided a special place for the two of us. In complete privacy I knelt before my Lord in total humility; He is holy and I am not. I talked to Him out loud from the depths of my soul and He bent low to hear so low I could almost touch Him. In fact at one point in our conversation I sensed He was sitting on a rock about 5 feet away from me. I asked if that was Him and if it was to please come much closer and hold my hand. I know He did. Maybe I am crazy but He is more real to me than what I can see with my physical eyes. I talked on and on and then peace fell like a gentle breaze across my soul. Then it was His turn to talk and He did. His Word is alive and active because it is the present words of my very real Jesus. He spoke directly to all I had shared and my questions were answered. What can I say, "He loves me."

I am completely captivated by His love for me. It is my hearts desire to return His extravagant and lavish love. Oh to be able to take His face into my hands and bring my mouth to his ear and whisper, "I love You back." I know that would put a beautiful smile on His glorious face.

Tomorrow morning will come early for me I will go to sleep tonight meditating on His sweet words to me. Awaken me Lord with ears to listen as one being taught. Be forever on my mind.

Till tomorrow.