Saturday, January 29, 2011

The lie I held in my hand

Just been thinking about some of the idols in my heart.... Who or what have I placed as more important than God in my life? I may not have said it out loud, but what does my life say? During my solo time with God, I am encouraged.

He asks for one thing: "Return to me, for I have redeemed you." Isaiah 44: 22

"The void God created in our lives WILL demand attention. Whether or not we realize it, we look desperately for something to satisfy us and fill the empty places."
your relationships, food, exercise, clothes, your job, your reputation, money.... whatever it is...

"Our craving to be filled is so strong that the moment something or someone seems to meet our need, we feel an overwhelming temptation to worship it."

--- "The poor deluded fool feeds on ashes. He trusts something that can't help him at all. Yet he cannot bring himself to ask, 'Is this idol that I'm holding in my hand a lie?'" Isaiah 44:20

So often I feed on ashes instead of feeding on the Word of God, my breath of life. How many times will I allow myself to be mislead by things that won't satisfy and will just leave me empty?

Savior, keep saving me. Thank you for your mercy and your grace.

"May our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father, who loved us and by his grace gave us eternal encouragement and good hope, encourage your hearts and strengthen you in every good deed and word." 2 Thessalonians 2:16-17

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Satisfaction of my soul....

Are you honestly satisfied with where you're at in life?

That's something I gave a lot of thought to this morning.

Many come to Christ out of their search for something missing in their life, realizing they are not satisfied with where they are at.... and yet, after receiving salvation, they go somewhere else to find further satisfaction and can spend years of their life realizing that it does not exist elsewhere.

COMPLETE satisfaction is in Jesus, alone. Lord, forgive my foolish heart for moments when my heart forgets that or chooses not to believe that. Whenever I try and do things my way, thinking that I know what's best and I can make all the right choices and I can work hard to make myself happy, my heart kinda goes, 'Wait, what am I thinking???' and by God's grace alone, I come to my senses and run back to Him. And in His presence is where I want to be.

God offers us SO MUCH every single day, but often times we choose not to enjoy life to the fullest because we're so busy running around looking for other things that will make us happy.

So my heart check this morning: What is standing in the way between you finding satisfaction in Jesus, the Lover of your soul?

I took comfort in this and it made me love my Maker even more:
The Holy Spirit doesn't convict us of sin and our shortcomings to condemn us. Instead, He convicts us of sin so we can become aware of it, seek forgiveness, and be set free!

"It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery." Galations 5:1

I'm reaching for the One Who brought me out of death and into life.

From my heart...
xx Jess

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

People pleasing is too exhausting.

People pleasing is too exhausting... Because we're not supposed to live like that. Had a really rough day at work today. Like everyone else in the whole world, I have some great days, some good days, and every now and then I have a few bad days. Today.... was one of those days. I even cried at work today. THAT's embarrassing. Oh well...

Anyway, God kinda showed me (again) just how I need to let go of people pleasing. It's IMPOSSIBLE. I need to just focus on Him and everything will work out just fine. It's SO lame that I worry about what other people think of me 9 times out of 10 more than what God, the Creator thinks of me. And HE's the one who loves me UNCONDITIONALLY. He's the one who is rooting for me and praying for me and praying that I experience victory over sin daily. He's the one who is shaping me into a better person; the person he created me to be.

A friend at work reminded me that there's always people that want to bring you down and make you feel bad about yourself. But today was a good reminder to re-center my thoughts and only focus on what's important in life. If I'm constantly worried about every single person that misunderstands me or whatever, then I'm going to be going about life aimlessly trying to prove myself, which is not the way to live. I'm saying all this mostly for myself, but we have no right to gossip about each other or hold grudges because at some point in life, we're all guilty of the same things. Basically, we're all screwed up in some way and we all need to just love each other and forgive each other. :)

I want to live for God!
I found this from my cousin and wanted to share this. This was exactly the reminder I needed today.

People are unreasonable, illogical and self-centered.
...Love them anyway.
If you do good, people will accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives.
Do good anyway.
If you are successful, you will win false friends and true enemies.
Succeed anyway.
The good you do today will be forgotten tomorrow.
Do good anyway.
Honesty and frankness make you vulnerable.
Be honest and frank anyway.
The biggest person with the biggest ideas can be
shot down by the smallest person with the smallest mind.
Think big anyway.
What you spend years building may
be destroyed overnight.
Build anyway.
People really need help but may attack if you help them.
Help people anyway.
Give the world the best you have
and you might get kicked in the teeth.
Give the world the best you've got anyway.
- Anonymous

Friday, October 29, 2010

This life and the life to come.

I just love how the Lord reels me in and redirects me and my motives and my goals for how I want to go about my day. Of course, there is always choice involved, and sadly often times I make very self-ceneterd choices on how I want to use my time. But today, God pulled me back, called me to Him, and I responded and I couldn't have been happier on how I spent my time.

First of all: PLEASE DO call me crazy... 

I'm the kind of girl wheere I would rather wake up at 4:30 in the stinkin MORNING to work out and then go to work at 6:30 instead of going to work out at normal times after work.
And for me- working out and health is pretty important to me....
God kinda showed me that maybe it was TOO important to me right now. If I can rise up early to do something good for my physical being, why can't I wake up to take care of my spiritual being? We are both, and both is important to the Lord. But each has it's place... and according to God, godliness has value for NOW and LATER.

"...train yourself to be godly. For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come" 1 Timothy 4:7-8

So, I'll definitely go with God on this one. :)

I've noticed that I can be in the Word and reading my Bible, but if it's in a busy state- if my mind is cluttered and I'm not allowing the Lord or even asking Him to speak, my heart isn't changed. It's still just as ugly and selfish. God will never force Himself upon us. He waits to be invited. He wants to speak to us and change us into who He made us to be.

"Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with me." Revelation 3:20

Anyway, I'm just SO thankful that the Lord is always so good at giving me what I need. I thought I needed a workout, and I just needed time with Him. To REALLY quiet my heart and my soul and open up my life honestly before Him.

"Therefore, my beloved, flee from idolatry." 1 Corinthians 10:14

From ALL forms. ANYTHING that is more of a priority to us than God. Anything that even lessens our passion for Him.

The places that many Christians run to for shelter can very easily become strongholds in our lives.
I want Jesus to be the center of my heart. Nothing else.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Ugly Plant in a Cold Season

I went on a run this afternoon and I couldn't find my iPod anywhere. Almost contemplated just not running at all since I didn't have anything to run to. Then, I figured... why not take advantage of silence? So I did. I went on a run. I quieted my heart before the Lord and since I wasn't so cluttered in my mind with music, I was able to hear the Lord a little more clearly.

I asked the Lord to speak to me, and He did. As I was running, I was looking around me and thinking how awesome God is that he is a God of HEALING, RESTORATION, and BEAUTY... among many other things. There was some funky plants I saw and I was thinking... Wow, you're ugly looking... But then I realized that they are in a cold season right now, and as seasons pass, they will become more beautiful.

Fall is a representation of shedding. The trees shed leaves; flowers shed off their petals; and we need to be daily shedding off our old self. The harsh cold and winter will allow parts of them to die and then be 'reborn' into something different. Something beautiful... Maybe even to the point where you wouldn't be able to recognize them as what they used to be.

Basically, I had a heart check... I am an ugly plant in a cold season. I just need to wait on the Lord and REALLY trust that He WILL DO what He set out to do.

"being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus." Phil 1:6

God ALWAYS keeps His promises. It's in His very nature. So, even me... Someone who can be SO stupid and SO stubborn... and make some of the same mistakes over and over again can change because God WILL do it. I just need to meet him with a willing and obedient heart.

I'm ready to keep pressing on... and let the old self die off and put on the new... I'm ready to let the Lord work and make some changes. "I can do ALL THINGS through Him who gives me strength." Phil 4:13

"Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus." Phil 3:13-14