Saturday, April 30, 2011

what a week . .catastrophic . . . .

Lord, this was to be a week of Spring Break. I had my ideas and wants for the week. I had made plans, only to have them adjusted and then changed. I wanted this and I wanted that. . You know exactly what my heart cried out on Sunday night and Monday.

However, today at the end of this week, I cry out Abba Father - thank you. You made this week even more 'eventful' than I could of imagined and even though it did not end like I felt it should of, you love me enough to bring such insights, blessings, and little tidbits of knowledge and you 'HOLD me' right when I needed to be held. You are Lord. Your way is best. What you have planned for me -- I can't even imagine.

You slowly showed me, how people can be set free, how people can allow the enemy back in and even the experience of PUSHING it out with your Holy Spirit and boy oh boy was that not a real and physical manifestation?? It was and then to reveal to me your purpose in it. I am humbled. And you giving me real world illustrations to 'cement' what I was learning and what you want me to know. . .Unbelievable.

Lord, you showed me my need for more patience, you showed me how much you can love the unloveable and in my darkest moments, you provided peace, joy, and such love. I sit her amazed -- no, in wonder of how much we, as your people are loved. You showed me clearly what you have said to me over and over. You have given me wisdom that can only come from you and when it benefits another and I so am thankful that you are getting the glory .. YOU do a 180 and allow that wisdom to speak right back to me and you provide the beautiful servants around me to speak it back to me. I sit here - humbled, blessed, and just in wonder.

I pray those around me would reach up to you as well and love you like you should be loved. Lord, I pray for guidance and direction. Lord, I pray for your perfect timing and thank you for it. Lord, There is no way that I could ever think that you 'loved' me as much as you loved David, Job or even Peter and yet, this week -- YOU proved to me that you do. And you clearly showed me how you love the unloveable. Lord, you even showed me how I can revert back to 'sin' and how ugly it was/is and how I never wish to return to it. And you did it so gently and lovingly.

But Lord, . . here is the but . .right? No -- I am just stating, I am weary. I am weak. Even though this week has been spectacular in its own revelations . . . . .my flesh is weak. Sustain me Lord. Come to my rescue. I can visualize you on that horse . .like I did back several weeks ago, come again, let me see you scoop me up, scoop him up, scoop her up . .and the others .. change us OH Lord, may we never expect what you are going to do but, trust and stand in wonder about YOUR great gifts and provisions. May I never cease to sing your Praises. Thank you for Psm. 17 and Psm . 37 .. you love me as much as you loved David. You love him that much too -- all of us.

Yesterday you gave me: 1 Peter 5.10
And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast.

That is what I want to radiate of you -- you have made me strong, firm, steadfast and even in my cries . . you ministered and reminded me of the Holy Spirit within.

Even when I begin to try and control and give you my McDonald's prayers . . of . this . .and of . .that .. you gently bring me back and show me how to pray and how to interceed. I am humbled. This is a love letter to you Lord - today. Thank you for preparing me to be your bride. Pure and spotless . .use me to give mercy, and show your Love.

Lord, you know my tasks for today and what I need to do. I know I must, as you have ordained it. However Lord, You will make my path straight. I thank you.

And Lord, what Beth commented on:

Whether the circumstances that led to our fiercest battles are someone else's fault, our own fault, or the fruit of life's unfairness, having God as our Father grants us hope: a perfect setup for catastrophic defeat is also the perfect setup for miraculous victory. No matter how we got into this mess, wejust have to keep believing we will be out of it soon.

YOU are sovereign Lord.
YOU are the best daddy in the world and the best husband and the best friend.
YOU speak loudly and I thank you.
Today is YOUR day Lord, go ahead and use me to change whatever in me. . and may they see it. I want it all -- I want all of YOU.


Tuesday, April 12, 2011

trusting me . . .

Dear Michelle, When I give you no special guidance, stay where you are. Concentrate on doing your everyday tasks in awareness of My Presence with you. The Joy of My Presence will shine on you, as you do everything for Me. Thus you invite Me into every aspect of your life. Through collaborating with Me in all things, you allow MY life to merge with yours. This is the secret not only of joyful living but also of victorious living. I designed you to depend on Me moment by moment, recognizing that apart from Me you can do nothing.
Be thankful for quiet days, when nothing special seems to be happening. Instead of being bored by the lack of action, use times of routine to seek My face. Although this is an invisible transaction, it speaks volumes in spiritual realms. Moreover, you are richly blessed when you walk trustingly with Me through the routines of your day. - Jesus

Colossians 3. 23 John 15.5 Psm 105.4

Dear Jesus,
I hear you -- loud and clear. Thank you for taking the time to speak to me daily. Lord, I wish to hunger for you deeply each day. Help me to keep my eyes on YOU. LOrd, and for the others in my life . ..Lord, move the mountains, bless those who persecute me, and Lord, heal .. .there are many around me. Many who seek wisdom and guidance. Lord for that perfect little one, for the pumpkin and his family. Lord, for my own two kids . . unspoken are the rest of my pleas. Lord, for Tony and that leg - restoration. Lord, for FCAT, school, grandma's and just everything in the normal routine. Thank you Lord.
Amen - Michelle

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

my blue period . . .

I am a wife, I am a mother, I am a teacher but most importantly, I am blessed, chosen, accepted, adopted, redeemed, and forgiven. I am a woman who wants people to see God's light and love in me and through me. But I was also a person who really did not understand all this or what it meant to fall in love with my Savior and make HIM Lord, until recently.

I grew up in a farm and went to a parochial school and heard about Jesus every day, prayed everyday, and I knew and believed that HE died for my sins. I grew up- my childhood was with its normal dysfunction, yelling, and heartache - but I love and honor the childhood God allowed. No regrets. I met a young man at the age of 15 who - besides being extremely cute, he knew he was going to heaven and I sort of thought I may get there. That intrigued me. I had never seen this or heard this before and besides, he was different than all the rest.

Dating started, high school, tennis matches, movies, college, and marriage, and two children and 23+ years later . .I found myself a few years ago really asking myself, Did I love God? I watched and witnessed these 'freaks' as I would think about them -- "how can they be that happy?". And I would tell myself, "oh, because that is what it is to love God . .that is how I am suppose to be". I am a teacher who loves to teach my students about Art History. Picaso is a famous artist because he just did what he wanted, he had a cubism period, a blue period followed by a rose period and he scupted as well as drew very traditional works. His blue period was a time of great sadness in his life. I would say that most of my adult/family time with our kids was a ROSE period. Happy. However, and I can only speak for myself, as time passed . . . . . a WORDLY /BUSY period came. I believe we allowed the business of this world to steer us off the better path or narrow path. I had already realized some ten years ago, I did not possess the hunger for God's word. Nor was I allowing HIM to speak and guide my life, as I believed I knew what to do.

God got my attention. He allowed my 'blue period". Something entered our lives and it dropped me to my knees so that I could only look up. The details are minor now, in the past, what did become very clear is that I became very aware of my sin. I became aware of my 'worldly' period where idolatry, pride, selfishness, lust, greed, lying, and other sins were my focus and that I was not in love with My Lord. I knew enough to call him Savior but not enough to call him LORD.

That changed. HE had to kill other loves in me, so that HE could restore me one moment, one prayer, one blessing at a time . Until today, when I can now say, Jesus Christ is not only my Savior but HE is LORD. I am HIS. I am blessed, chosen, accepted, adopted, redeemed, and forgiven. Because the Holy Spirit convicted me, I was able to forgive the 'blue' and one day at a time, allow God to rebuild me with more faith and trust in God that I have never before experienced. Never. Even as I type this, again today - HE amazes me. To learn to have total faith in HIM, to live knowing Christ is alive in me, and to be free from the strongholds that I was not even aware of ---- IS Tremendous. Freedom.

I found out in this 'blue period', that I did not understand what it took to love someone in the proper way, as I did not really love or trust God. Now I do. I am no longer in a 'blue period' but now I am in the 'son period' and HIS sunshine is ever such a reminder of how HE can make us new. I am most humbled that MY Lord, waited some 44 years for me to really fall in Love with HIM. Now, I just want people to see HIM in me. I want to be a warrior for my family, friends, and the lost around me. God is using me. I want to be used. Nothing FREAKS me out anymore - and I understand how someone would want to be called a Jesus Freak. I know God has great things in line for me. I know I am in the Center of HIS will. I know that season of knowledge and discovery was ordained long before I was a glimmer in my mom's thoughts some 45 years ago. HIS timing is most perfect. HIS will is not a penalty. HE wants us to thrive not just survive. HE came to set the captives free. I was a captive. I am now free.

The hunger for HIS word is here now.

I would now say, that God has been adding the color of the 'son' .. .to my blue period and you know what blue and yellow make? Green.

Green represents growth . . .I am growing .. and I will continue to grow as when I am finished, I get to be harvested.

And I know where I am going.

I am going home.

I love you Lord, but I know you love me even more.


Monday, April 4, 2011

those hands

Those hands. Each morning, I am able to run to Circle K, get coffee and take it to Grma Africa. She is not 'really' my grandmother, but I claim her. She is really Brendan's grandma. My own grandma, the only one I have left is in Wisconsin and very well, for which I am thankful. This grandma, took a fall almost a month ago and has begun nursing home life. I keep telling her each day - to get stronger so she can walk on home, but she just smiles and says things like,"that is a good idea".

She will usually ask me once or twice, "so where were you going?"

" I came to see you Grandma." "oh" "Well, where were you going before you came here?"

" I was headed to school."

Each morning, I find her in a different position. Some mornings alert and others not so alert. I will say that today - she seemed her most alert. She wanted to hold her coffee cup and guide it to her mouth, but really can't hold it by herself.

I will ask her how she slept. What she had for lunch or supper the day before, and I ask her if she is in pain. By then, she will ask me again, "so where are you going". Some days the confusion is a little more.

Some days I try and ask her about Africa - this is a woman who spent over 30 years there as a missionary with her husband. She taught school, ran the Women's Ministries and made dinner for the President of the country -- and now, she needs me to hold her head up and let her sip some coffee.

By the way, I don't even love coffee. It took me 2-3 cups /trials before I got the right taste for her and the right amount of ice cubes so that she could drink it when I got there. And I was not sure she was remembering that I did this until this am when she said, "hey, I missed you yesterday". I did not have the heart to tell her that I had 'skipped' both Friday, Saturday, and Sunday as there was just too many things that got my attention instead. AFter she said that today - you can bet I won't let a day go past without taking her the coffee.

House Blend. No cream or sugar. Only get 1/2 a cup, add 4 ice cubes from soda machine. Buy it - $1.60 ( I tired to ask the clerk to charge me for a 1/2 cup, but he did not agree.) Then proceed to the Nursing/Rehab Place next to the hospital. Walk in the front door and then wake her up.

I added my routine, just in case I was unable to do this one day -- you could fill in.

Anyway, I say I bring her coffee ..and yet, she brings me so much more.

To rub her head, brush the hair out of her eyes and see into thoe gray /blue eyes and to see this 93 year old body fight to cough or sit up. ... is not only heartwarming, but, it is therpy for me.

I mean - I know I get more from her than she gets from me.

Today, I felt as if God was speaking directly through her with HIS eyes and HE reminded me that no matter what, she was my grandma. No matter what. No matter what, I would always have family and 'this' was my family. No matter what, I was in HIS will and HE was so proud of me - HE esteemed me. You see - why wouldn't I take her coffee each morning when God is right there with her and my spirit communes with hers.

That is a blessing.

So, why the photo of her hands? Today, I just really noticed how small they had become, how pretty they were - all with the veins and all, but also, how she would just pat my hands as she waited for another sip .. it just blessed me so.

So, I encourage anyone with a grandma .. .enjoy them . .take them coffee . . do what you can to enjoy their wisdom, their love, and let then bless you in ways you probably never even imagined.

I love you Grandma!

Grandma, this verse spoke to me .. .you labored for our Lord - thank you.

1 Corn 15.58

Therefore, my dear brothers, stand firm. Let nothing more you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord, is NOT in vain.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Incredible . .

Yesterday was the most incredible day - I mean, well -- I really have many incredible days but yesterday was different. For the first time in my life - I spent the majority of the day in prayer a woman on a mission and then what happened - amazing.

Just sayin . . . Lord, YOUR ROCK.

Today, again you wake me with the most sweetest thoughts and then I had this on my Jesus Calling Devotional/Nook (oh how I love that b-day gift) . .so I must share:

Dear Michelle,
In Me you have everything. In Me you are complete. Your capacity to experience Me is increasing, through My removal of debris and clutter from your heart. As your yearning for Me increases, other desires are gradually lessening. Since I am infinite and abundantly accessible to you, desiring Me about all else is the best way to live.
It is impossible for you to have a need that I cannot meet. After all, I created you and everything that is. The world is still at My beck and call, though it often appears otherwise. Do not be fooled by appearances.
THINGS that are visible are brief and fleeting while things that are invisible are everlasting.

- Jesus

Eph 3.20 2 corn 4.18

Amen Lord - Go ahead and WOW me again.
And Lord, your word about my needs .. .I am so glad you know what I need and that you have/will and forever will provide.

I love you Lord - more than a Savior -- now as God!