Be Faithful

The phone rings...

Unknown number.

"You may not remember me,...
In college, you had a Bible study at your apartment...

Someone asked, 'if you died, how sure are you that you would go to heaven?'...

70 percent... maybe.
I thought about that for years..."

The high-light of my husband's week: a phone call from a guy he didn't remember.

Words of encouragement, a "thank you", just to say, 
"Your life impacted mine..."

Oh, Weary One, be faithful.
Someone is watching.
Someone is listening.
Your child, your neighbor, a stranger...

There is more going on than you what you see.

And if the Spirit prompts you to speak, go, call, give, write... Obey.
A faithful Weary One may need encouragement that the Lord wants to send through you!

All Dressed Up

Long hair...

a simple "trick" really...

"things aren't always what they seem".

another reminder to not judge things by their appearance.

FYI  -  I used ribbon to cover a headband to match the color of my dress, leaving the ends of ribbon long on both sides. My short hair is wrapped around the headband and held fast with hair combs and pins.  Then I sewed a cheap wig that I bought after Halloween to a hair comb, pushed it into the pig-tail, and tied the long ribbon from the headband around my pig-tail and the wig to hold it in place.

I ordered my costume on-line, but once it arrived and saw how it was made, I knew I could have easily made most of it myself.

For example this skirt, which is "one size fits most", is one long rectangular piece of fabric.  It has ONE seam on the side, a basic hem at the bottom, and a string of elastic at the top.

Something to Ponder:

Many of us live as though life were a costume party.  Before we go out, we dress-up, make-up, to cover-up our insecurities.  Oh, the joy of being free of pretending, feeling comfortable being ourselves!

Susie Larson said, "Paint the barn and move on." Don't be sloppy and neglect your appearance, but don't get caught up in superficial idolatry of beauty.

It doesn't take a lot of money or time to be clean and attractive, but if we are consumed with our external appearance, no amount will be enough to satisfy us.

To paraphrase a statement by Christa Black, "Beauty is not a reflection issue; it is a perception issue."

Enjoy your life, your health, and the beauty God has given you. You are beautiful! You were made in the image of God. The Bible says, and we all know, that external beauty quickly fades. But, a woman of true beauty, inner beauty, will become more and more beautiful!

An Empty Room

 "...What do you have that you did not receive?..."

this house
this child
this bed
this husband
this barn
this body
this mirror
this face
this bookcase
this mind

new sofa
tearing seam
customer service
waiting for the pick-up

Week after week, as I sat on comfy leather couches, feeling like I was borrowing someone else's furniture.

snowy roads
remote location,
...months pass

and I remember: 

Everything in my home belongs to God; 
"no-thing" I "own is really "mine", 
just on loan for this lifetime.

"For who makes you different from anyone else? ..."

this wealth
this education
this style
this personality
this talent
this gift
this blog

"...And if you did receive it, 
why do you boast as though you did not?"  
1 Corinthians 4:7

this pride
this insecurity
this vanity
this self-absorption
this defensiveness
this comparison
this jealousy

The only thing of "mine" that was ever truly "mine" was my sin.
And, even that is no longer mine...
I made a trade.

"God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God."  2 Corinthians 5:21

What a trade!  My sin for his righteousness.

Things of this world, fall away from me.  
I am eternal, made for more than this clinging-temporal clutter.

empty living room
still full
with wood floors

Every gift that remains, be a gift to me and to others... a blessing, a tool.
Lord, may all that is "Yours" (that this world would call "mine") bring You glory.

"Swiffer Floor Hockey", my floors have never been so clean!


Do you wish you felt more confident
in your career,
extra-curricular activities,
personal hobbies,
church commitments,
neighborhood involvement,
or physical areas (of health, exercise, appearance)?

Edmund Blair Leighton (public domain)

When I compare the places where I feel confidence and insecurity, the contrast makes evident what I am lacking in some areas of my life.

A sense of divine calling causes me to be keenly aware that more is at stake than my pride and comfort.  This motivates me to keep moving forward rather than cower or compromise under fear or false guilt.  The more specific and certain I am that what I am pursuing is of the Lord, the less I second guess myself and the more determined I am to not be deterred, regardless of obstacles or inconveniences.

When I have a clearly defined mission, I focused on the desired end, and am therefore more decisive and less vulnerable to comparison or manipulation.  The more detailed my plans, outlined and written down, the less distracted I am by what others are doing and the less their opinions matter to me. 

Nothing steals my confidence like selfishness and pride.  What may start out as a feeling of superiority, based upon a successful performance or shallow victory, always ends with the nagging doubts of vanity.  When I become preoccupied with myself, I am setting myself up for insecurity because I have to defend or maintain the status or image I have attained.  My peace and joy slips away when I try to impress people or seek personal gain, because at some level I have compromised my integrity and chosen the superficial over the eternal.

have a CLEAR GOAL, 

and maintain a PURE MOTIVE?

As I seek the Lord, He faithfully gives me insight each area of my life where I feel confusion, uncertainty, or a lack of confidence.  Through prayer, I ask God for direction to know what is best in prioritizing my goals and how to best use my time and resources.  I pray for insight to know His will, His plans and purposes, for my life.  I also ask for discernment to understand my own heart.

I need wisdom beyond my own, and as I delight myself in the Lord, He to gives me direction, passion in my heart for His kingdom, and His perspective on my life. When I am quiet before Him, I see my goals, my purpose, and my motives clearly; then I can sincerely reaffirm that knowing Him and obeying His will is my utmost desire and His approval is the only praise I seek.

ON A PERSONAL NOTE:  Today (02-02-2013), was another prayer day for me.  I set aside this day to be alone, seek the Lord, think, and pray.  Though I still have two areas where I am needing specific guidance and must keep seeking and waiting patiently for His answer and His timing, He has already given me peace.  I no longer feel pressured to give a hurried answer or rush into a commitment.

Dear Seeker,
Do you feel over-committed?
Do you feel guilty about doing too much or not enough?
Are you easily manipulated and find it difficult to say "no"?
Do you feel insecure or struggle with comparing yourself with others and they are doing?
Take each issue before the Lord.  
Let Him give you the perspective and courage that you need.

"Do not throw away your confidence..."  Hebrews 10:35
...the LORD will be your confidence..." Proverbs 3:26