Tuesday, June 30, 2015

meltdown

yesterday i guess i had what is commonly referred to as a "meltdown"

ever since the supreme court decision to legalize same sex marriage was delivered to a divided american public, i have read opinion upon opinion on the subject.

i am more than firm on my position that marriage is a sacred union between a man and a woman,  ordained by God at creation.  i'm not going to go into detail about how the opposite sexes naturally compliment each other or how i believe that the relationship in marriage is supposed to reflect the relationship that Christ has with His church.  

suffice it to say that i will not ever be swayed from biblical truth.

at this moment my issue is with christians. i almost want to put "sarcastic quotes" (thanks matt walsh) around the word christians.  hmmmmm......wondering.......

anyway......

so much of what i'm hearing from my christian brothers and sisters is nothing more than watered-down theology.  it's like the majority of christians  tune into joel osteen every week to hear a "feel good" gospel message, if they even seek a message at all.

so........i melted.....i went outside.....i fell to my knees.......and i sobbed.  i sobbed because my heart is broken for the deceived.

and then i did what i do when my head is overloaded and jeff is not home for me to unload it on.

i wrote in a notebook.  the following is what i wrote.  except i wrote it in a HUGE, CRAZY, OUT OF CONTROL thought explosion sort of way.

watered down theology.  forgiveness without repentance???
do i even need a savior anymore?  if we don't mention sin how do we mention savior?  what is he saving us from?

God is love--love wins. can we love without bringing sexual deviance into it?  can i even say that????

are we accessories to sin when we don't talk about it anymore?

repent!  turn from your sins!  go and sin no more!!
our example in john the baptist preparing the way for our savior, and then Jesus himself telling sinners to sin no more.  to take up their cross and follow Him.  do we even know what that means???
are we no longer supposed to tell people this?  christians shouldn't talk about sin??? or use the word repent?????
we can't tell the world why we are upset?  why our hearts are broken for them?  we are just supposed to celebrate their sin with them?

i know our struggle isn't against flesh and blood, but against evil rulers of the darkness of this world and spiritual wickedness in high places.  am i even allowed to say that??? am i allowed to say that people are allowing evil to creep into their hearts and minds??????

everyone!!!  stand up and admit our sins!!! we are all sinners, we all need a savior!!!  be real, let us dig deep and examine our hearts, let us fall on our faces before God and repent.  will the world still think it doesn't need this???

do we just love people and let God do the rest?  really?  do we???  what does this love look like?  because i'm struggling with that right now.  the reason i struggle with that is because when i love someone it involves being truthful and not quietly sitting by while sin invades their lives.  in that same respect i rely on those that love me to do the same for me.

it is quite frightening that so many christians will turn a blind eye to sin as if the God we love and worship is not righteous, holy, just and merciful.

Sunday, June 28, 2015

questions and prayers

i keep a notebook.  jeff would laugh at that statement because i have many, many notebooks and i'm always writing stuff down.

anyway....

i keep a notebook of prayers.  i write out my prayers at times.  it helps me to focus.  i have a hard time staying focused.

i wanted to share what i wrote in the last few days.  it is private, but needs to be public.  needs to be shared.

6/27/15
Father God,
my heart is grieving.  You led this country for so long.  at one time nearly everyone acknowledged that fact.  now.....this is what we have.  i am sad, but hopeful.  because i know whose hands i am held in.  i know who i belong to.  and it's not the gods of this world.  help me, Lord, to speak the truth.  to love.  to be a light in the world and not celebrate the dark.  thank you Lord.

6/28/15
Father,
i'm upset this morning.  it would be so easy to just disregard You and Your words and follow the rest of the world; be a part of the big party.  but what would i gain?  nothing.

following You Lord brings me peace and joy unspeakable.  it is a difficult road at times, filled with boulders and pitfalls. there are times that the world can make me feel wrong and defeated, and even other christians can make me feel wrong and defeated.

these are the words they banter around
"do not judge"  "do not be a stumbling block"  " just love"  "love your neighbor"

what do these things mean?

can i judge what is sin based on what i know is truth from scripture?
is my silence a stumbling block when i don't tell others the gospel message of sin-repentance-and forgiveness?
or is it a stumbling block when i do tell them?

love your neighbor.  love others.  love God.

i love You Lord with all of my heart, all of my soul, and all of my mind.
i see You God as a most loving parent.  You give me good things.  You teach me and mold me through your words and your Holy Spirit living inside me.  You remind me of my sins and my need to repent and be forgiven.  each day, each minute, i am reminded that i live to glorify You alone.

so if i am to reflect Your love, Lord to others, to the world, how does that look?
shouldn't it look the same as i described above?

the world and a big part of my christian brothers and sisters are promoting a love that i have not seen in scripture.  they are promoting a love that has no strings attached.  a love that doesn't lead anyone to the pathway of eternal life.

are we just supposed to tell the world that Your love is for everyone and Your grace is for us all and then leave it at that?  these are absolutely true statements, but is that where i'm supposed to stop?

am i not supposed to mention that the world needs a savior?  am i not supposed to tell them why we need a savior?  am i not supposed to mention  sin because that would be judging?  what constitutes sin?  do you decide or do we decide.  or do we let our earthly rulers decide it for us?

Lord, help me be strong enough and loving enough to speak the truth that the world needs to hear.
Heavenly Father please help me to not give my neighbors a false sense of eternal security.  help me to be able to disagree with others worldviews and not be angry.  help me to always remember that we are all made in Your image.  help me to remember that your adversary, satan, roams this earth seeking to destroy.  and it starts the moment we are conceived.  help me to lead my family alongside my husband to protect them and to humbly teach them Your ways only and to always lead them in the truth.
amen.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

the secret to a happy marriage is.....

THERE IS NO SECRET!!!

nothing at all can change the fact that growing a marriage and family is the hardest thing you will do for your entire life.

a long and happy marriage requires the husband and the wife to be selfless.  it's not a trait that everyone comes into marriage possessing.  sometimes it has to be learned.  sometimes it takes quite a while to get there.  that is why you should never give up.

you must wake up each day willing to go the extra mile or extra thousand miles for your spouse.  you must be willing to put their needs before your own.  it is dying to self fifty x fifty times a day in order to correct your course.  have i always known this?  have i always done this?  no.  but i am taking one day at a time.  we are taking one day at a time.  determined to get it right!

it is a shame that so many marriages fail because the people involved are only thinking of themselves, what they need, what they want. they don't want to invest the time it takes to see the results of living in a selfless way.

the benefits enjoyed are directly equal to the effort employed.

we are all inherently self-centered, selfish, and sinful.  it is a daily discipline to learn to be the opposite.

this is why God created marriage:  for mutual support,companionship, love, procreation, and revealing himself and His goodness.  the family, as God created it to be; father, mother, children, is a perfect picture of Gods love and care and provision for us.

as in everything else, God desires and deserves to be a part of our marriages.  He is the glue that holds it all together, just as He is the one that holds the planets spinning in space.  He is our creator and our sustainer in all things.

when we are happy, we praise Him!
when we are sad, we praise Him!
when it all seems to be falling apart, He will help you put it back together.

a good marriage is a good witness for Christ and His kingdom.
a marriage with God truly at the center cannot fail.

today is our 32nd wedding anniversary.  we have had our share of discontent, but we have also had more than an  abundance of happy!  because we built our life together on the solid rock--nothing could destroy it.

God owns this marriage.  what the world considers disposable we know to be eternal.
this marriage is refining us, teaching us, molding us into what God created us to be.
with each passing year it brings us closer to Him.

Friday, June 12, 2015

the soundtrack of our lives

i remember the first time i went to a baptist church.  the year was 1981 and the preacher was droning on about the evils of rock and roll music.  now, i was more of a "pop" music kind of girl, but i guess it's all the same.  i remember thinking to myself and then spouting off to jeff "this guy is judging my music and he is just old and out of touch!"

fast forward to approximately 1993.  up until this point secular music was the soundtrack of our life, in addition to disney songs and kids bible songs.  at this point my kids were 10, 7, and 5 and they are just beginning to sing along with the music.  hmmmmm........

a few more years pass and we start homeschooling.  i am being convicted left and right about things in my life and how i am raising my family.

.....and i notice that the kids are more and more being influenced by what their peers are listening to.
.....and a light bulb goes off in my head!

words are powerful.

sing them over and over again to a catchy beat and tell me they have no impact on your life.

by 1996 its christian contemporary music all the way at our house.  the new soundtrack to our days consisted of dc talk, audio adrenaline, and 4him just to name a few.

when the kids grew much older i could no longer "control" everything they did.  i know they joined their disillusioned peers and listened to some stuff that neither i nor their God would approve of.  at the same time i also backslid into listening to more and more "classic rock"

but i have been convicted again in regards to music.  probably because of all of these impressionable little boy faces that look up to us for guidance.  i will listen and even sing along to secular music only if i think it is something that God would smile upon.  sorry lady gaga music, you are in the trash can where you belong.  the words of the world have no place in my mind or on my lips.  it is a constant, daily struggle to try to keep my mind and heart pure.

i am so thankful for KLove radio and i proudly support it.  christian contemporary praise and worship music is a blessing in my life.  what joy to sing praises to my God!  what comfort to sing of His hope! and what lessons to take in as you sing these songs.

Monday, June 1, 2015

empty nest vs full life

there are moments when i really feel..... or realize....... or deeply think about the fact that my kids are grown and moved out and have their own homes and families.

it is a weird feeling.  i've got to say that it will probably take me decades to shake this feeling.  maybe i never will?

i miss having them here under the same roof and i miss all of the things we used to do together.

........and then again,

i like this quiet time.

i can do what I want!

but the reality is that i do all the same things.  it's just much more quiet.

i think about them all of the time.  when i wake up, when i go to bed, all throughout the day.  i pray for them.  for their days, for their marriages, for their parenting, for their health and for their safety.

i think that a mother can't help it.

yeah.....it's an odd feeling this empty nest brings.

but it's not truly empty.  not all of the time.

it is fuller.  sometimes to overflowing.

and then quiet again.

someday maybe i will get used to the rhythm of this season.

and in the meantime i will enjoy it.

Saturday, April 11, 2015

i was born that way?

i was born with a desire for carbs.  i love bread!!!!  i have struggled with this and its resulting effect on my figure for my whole life.  if i wasn't born that way, then being exposed to overeating of bread or other carbs  in my formative years contributed to my sinful desires for bread/carbs in my life.

i have a problem.  too much carbs in my life is not healthy for me.  it's just not good for me.  it is an unhealthy lifestyle.  some people might even say its a sin because sometimes i eat too much bread even though i know its wrong.  it very well may be.

now.....should all of the skinny, non-carb addicted people in the world despise me as a person and punish me by throwing rocks at me?  should they "create" laws specifically designed to punish me for this?

the answer is no.

and.....

should i force them to accept my carb addiction as an acceptable way of life?  teach the little kiddos that eating too many carbs is okay and normal?  should i make it illegal for anyone to speak out against the practice of over indulging in carbs?  should i humiliate them into silence about the dangers of a carb-filled lifestyle?

also the answer is no.

i need help!!  be my friend.  love me as you should love your neighbor.  and pray for me to overcome my carb loving lifestyle.  i know that with willpower and focusing on the way that God would want me to live my life to honor him that i would be humble and work toward being selfless in every area of my life.

including my attraction to bread..

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

it's not about LOVE

they like to call it a "love" issue.

if you are against people loving one another, then you are a hater.

heck, even Jesus preached a message of  "love one another".

so christians, how can you believe that it is wrong to "love one another" ?

well.....we can believe that it is wrong, in regards to homosexuality, because it's not about love.

..................it's about sex.

it's about what scripture says is normal, natural, God designed

as opposed to what man says is normal or man designed.

(now don't make me quote scripture here.  we all know it's there)

it's about what scripture tells us is wrong, ungodly, detestable.

(yup....it's in there)

no one in scripture ever came right out and asked Jesus about sexual relations between the same sex because they already knew the answer.  duh. (sodom and gomorrah were real to them)

so, if today, in 2015, Jesus came back and we could ask Him to elaborate His thoughts on this topic, He would give us His answer, probably in a parable which would refer us back to the scriptures.
(again, we all know which ones, don't make me quote.....but  i will if asked to nicely)

He would tell us to "love one another" and not to judge or condemn anyone, while at the same time He would tell us to avoid sin and the appearance of sin.  and.........................

..........................homosexuality is a sin.

yup...................lumped in there with lying, cheating, stealing, adultery, murder, drunkenness, and other sexual sins.  sin comes in many forms and lust for the same sex is one of them.

and..................

then there is the woman at the well.  the adulterer.  a sin.  Jesus told her that He did not condemn her.  He was paying the penalty for her sins because He loved her.

and.........................

then He told her to "GO AND SIN NO MORE."

you see, it's not a LOVE issue.  it's a self control issue.  sex was designed by God as a means to create a family and bond it together.

our sinful natures have made it into everything and anything anyone wants it to  be.

do I judge the homosexual?  in the biblical sense?  do I condemn them?  in other words.....

am I deciding their fate for all eternity?   no, i'm not.

God is the judge and all will be judged and either condemned or redeemed based on their faith in Jesus as their Lord and Savior.

can I be saved through Jesus from eternal punishment and still sin?  yes, i can.

therefore.................a homosexual can be saved, however, they will have to falsely interpret or totally disregard scripture if they want to continue being unrepentant of that sin.  this will lead to them suffering in body and spirit and also potentially causing others (christians)  to stumble in their walk.

if they remain unrepentant and militant, and prideful regarding their sin, then their salvation must be questioned and their theology considered false.

these are the most dangerous people because they can lead others astray in the name of Christ.

so...............................

should we as Christians LOVE all people?  yes.

should we follow them blindly and quietly down a path of destruction?  no.