This Is Your Daily Reminder

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God loves you.

After hearing that so many times it begins to lose its meaning. It’s easy to hear it with your ears and not with your heart. But these past few months I’ve been realizing how incredible that statement really is.

When I look at the night sky and see the work of your fingers—
the moon and the stars you set in place—
what are mere mortals that you should think about them,
human beings that you should care for them?
Yet you made them only a little lower than God
and crowned them with glory and honor.
You gave them charge of everything you made,
putting all things under their authority—
the flocks and the herds
and all the wild animals,
the birds in the sky, the fish in the sea,
and everything that swims the ocean currents.

O Lord, our Lord, your majestic name fills the earth!

-Psalm 8:3-9

We can study and learn about our beautiful earth and the universe as far as we can reach but we will never find the end.

To think that we cannot possibly reach the ends of this universe we live in.

To think that there is a Creator so much bigger than all of that.

To think that He spoke and creation grew into existence.

To think that we are so small, most of our greatest ambitions is to see just this planet!

To think that we as mere humans think we can understand God.

To think that as mere humans we are wiser than Him and do what we think is best.

To think that no matter what we do to ignore God or how we hurt Him, God loves us.

So why do I do those things I know are no good for me? Why ignore God and settle for second best in my life? How can I not trust God with my life? Why do I think I can possibly be good enough for Him? And yet through His grace he made us good enough.

This is God’s daily reminder to you and I. His love is enough for you. You don’t have to change to receive it. You already have it no. matter. what.  

As you begin each day, remember that truth that is bound with no reasons.

God LOVES you just because.

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Whatever You Do, It’s Enough

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Do you ever feel like you need to be more?

I’ve been learning the meaning of Colossians 3:17- Whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

This year has been an interesting one for me. Not because I’ve been doing a lot of interesting things, but because I haven’t been doing much of anything except working. I work everyday and over 40 hours a week to earn money so I can finish up my last two years of schooling. So besides earning money I’ve viewed this year as pointless. But God’s been showing be that I am way wrong.

What you do isn’t really what’s important in God’s eyes. Sure God calls us to do certain things at times and we should obey, but a lot of times we can get bogged down because we think we aren’t doing enough for God. We hear about missionaries and feel guilty because we think God wont be proud of us unless we are spending all of our time furthering his kingdom in some obvious way. But God doesn’t call us all to be missionaries in Africa.

Did you know that working out can be an act of worship? How about doing laundry? And dare I say it, updating your Facebook status?! None of these things are “good” or “holy” acts in and of themselves, but add God and you end up with a sacred item on your to do list. The reason these ordinary acts are transformed with God in the mix is found when we ask ourselves why we do them.

I workout so that I have a healthy body God can use for His glory. I practice playing guitar until my fingers hurt for hours because I want to play to worship Him. I spend time writing so I can encourage others through it. Whatever you do, do it for God. Even the things that go unnoticed by others matter to God. “…for the Lord searches every heart and understands every motive behind the thoughts (1 Chronicles 28:9).”

Not every day of your life is going to be spent doing and saying something drastic for the Lord…in the worlds eye’s. But God knows you are so much more important than that. He sees the little things you do in His name and is just as proud. He sees you washing those dishes with a smile on your face and it makes Him smile too.

So whatever you do, whether big or small, mundane or extraordinary, and whatever you say, whether shouted or whispered, written or sang, do it for the Lord. Because He knows your heart and it is enough.  “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness (2 Corinthians 12:9).”

You are enough.

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Deal With What You Feel

Feelings can be dangerous. Sometimes they make you crazy, they make you unrealistic, and I’ll be blunt:  they make you stupid.

I wish my emotions had a switch that I had full access to. But it doesn’t work that way. Even though I try so hard to contain them, they show all over my face. I wear my heart on my sleeve but sometimes I wish I had the emotions of a rock. Why? Because rocks don’t get hurt. You can only have a pet rock until one gets thrown at your head and it’s over from there because rocks only hurt you. They don’t make good pets.

Instead I am a cuddly puppy or a baby bunny. You have to be gentle with me and if you threw me at someones head I would die. Okay I might be exaggerating a little but that’s how I feel right now. I can get carried away… Ever been there?

Yeah, I may be a little ridiculous and I might let my emotions run some of my days but I’m learning. I know it’s not all about feelings and while I don’t really hate the world, sometimes it’s how I feel. It may be unrealistic, crazy and stupid but our feelings are real. So when your emotions escape the loony bin how do you deal with what you feel?

When how I feel starts dictating my life I’m learning to say, “God, you are all I need. Only You can satisfy me. You are enough.” Every time my feelings get the best of me I have to consciously stop and bring it to God.

God puts things in perspective. When we learn to trust God, we have this peace and patience that inhabits our hearts and we know everything is going to be okay because He loves us. Its amazing how focusing our thoughts on that simple fact changes everything. Right thoughts bring about right emotions which bring about right actions which bring about right results.

God’s love is the answer to everything. Even when life is crazy confusing and my emotions spin me in circles I know that as long as I keep my focus on God’s constant love and mercy, I will never get dizzy.

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Teddy Graham Thoughts and one Confessed Shop-a-holic

I’m sitting here munching on my chocolate Teddy Grahams in deep thought. I just finished organizing my closet and hanging everything up in the most efficient manner.

What can I say, I’m a neat freak.

So as I eat my Teddy’s and admire my work, I start thinking. I love clothes. I may have a bit of an obsession with them. I mean I don’t have a fashion blog so I’m not THAT obsessed and other things rank higher in my life but I do love them to the point where they distract me sometimes. When I am feeling sad or disappointing with life I expect that new clothes will make me feel better. So I go shopping. Online, or make a Target run.

If you are shaking your head at me now, it’s okay. So am I.

So then I start thinking, what if God calls me to a life where I will never have enough money to buy clothes that I want. What if He leads me to a life where I have to live on a LOT less than I am used to having?

Now before you go thinking I’m a spoiled rich brat, I’ll have you know that I don’t live in a five story mansion, my mom says “no” more than “yes,” and my dad mentions at least twice a day that I need to get a budget together and start saving for college. BUT, I do have it better than some. Enough so to make me a little greedy.

And selfish.

Aaaand maybe possibly a little whinny when I don’t get what I want. Maybe.

You can see then why God would want me to work on this weakness of mine. After all, I cannot serve God without giving up everything to Him. And everything doesn’t just include the things I am okay with leaving behind. It doesn’t mean I can ignore idols in my life and say its normal just so that I can keep them in my closet.

Cause when God does room checks, He is nothing but thorough.

If I’m honest with myself, I may not go shopping as much as some people but I know my heart is not right in it’s intentions. If I am honest with myself, I know that I do have that idol hidden in my closet and I know that God is asking me to hand it over. And if I am honest I know that if I do, I will be a lot happier.

Well, we all struggle with something or some things. And lately I’ve been realizing that we cannot complete the will of God in our lives unless we jump over that barrier and give those things over to God one hundred percent.

That in itself is a huge motivator. I have always wanted to be used by God in an awesome way, and I know He wants that too. But God wants to clean us out and move in His stuff before that can happen. And we all know that our stuff and Gods stuff doesn’t match.

So I guess you can say I am a shop-a-holic on the road to recovery. But hey, at least I’m not addicted to Chocolate Teddy Grahams. Yet.

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This Was The Best Day EVER!

As a child I remember living each day like it was the only day in existence.

I never thought about the future or remembered the past. Today was where I was and it was an exciting adventure!

I was an explorer, a detective, a spy, a ninja. I was Malibu Barbie and then came a day when I was her murderer [I tied a string around her neck, whipped her around, ripped off her head and buried her in the backyard sandbox…”alive”]. I tell myself I was just destroying Satin’s evil secret weapon against women. ANYWAYS…

I was a wild child with a creative spirit, and always happy [except when I decided Barbie was so yesterday]. I lived life to the fullest with no worries or fears because I knew my parents were there for me and I trusted them with everything so blindly.

At the end of each day I would always say with the biggest smile on my face, “Today was the best day EVER!”

Now, here I sit at my computer, all grown up, being disappointing with  more days than I am happy with. Obviously I am more aware of the pain and hurt in this life and not every hour is play time. The reality of my childish dreams have come to light and while I have great parents, they can’t be with me and take care of me forever.

I’m not a child anymore. But does that mean I can’t live that way anymore? As I was reading in Romans yesterday, I noticed how again and again we are referred to as God’s children. Again and again it refers to having childlike faith and blind trust in God throughout the entire Bible. It all painted a picture of my childhood.

The world has changed me after all these years but why should it? Isn’t our heavenly father stronger than our earthly parents? Isn’t God always there for us no matter what? Doesn’t he love us enough to die for us? Isn’t he going to protect us forever? Why do I let worry and fear take over my life now? God wants us to live in such a way that at the end of each day we can say “this was the best day Ever.”

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Aiming Skyward…and Beyond!

1 Peter is an amazing book. If you havent read it in a while or at all, read it. Now. Not to be bossy or anything 🙂 I started reading it today by random. It’s this new thing I’m trying. Instead of following a set Bible reading plan, I just pick a book, any book and read it. If its short I’ll read the whole thing. Like today!

So 1 Peter. What’s it all about? Well besides the obvious fact that it’s written by Peter himself, it was a letter to all of God’s chosen people living in Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia and Bithynia. So today we can apply it to all believers living around the world! A letter to all Christians from the one and only Peter himself! How cool is that?? I think thats pretty neat.

The beginning talks a lot about how we should be living and it’s is all focused on the future. And by future I mean our rewards in heaven!

It says in chapter 1, because Jesus died for our sins, “Now we live with great expectation and we have a priceless inheritance- an inheritance that is kept in heaven for you, pure and undefiled, beyond the reach of change and decay.”

This really got me thinking about my perspective on life and how it affects the way I live. I believe that I have an inheritance in heaven, but do I live with great expectation? Do I constantly do things in accordance with building my wealth in heaven? Or am I more concerned with my earthly inheritance?

Chapter 1, verse 18 says “For you know that God paid a ransom to save you from the empty life you inherited from your ancestors. And the ransom he paid was not mere gold or silver. It was the precious blood of Christ, the sinless, spotless lamb of God.”

The life we inherit from our ancestors is empty. I think that’s another way of saying a life living for the world is completely pointless. But a life lived for God is worth everlasting life and inheritance. And that is because this gift was not paid for by gold or silver (earthly means) but by the blood of Christ, by love, which lasts forever. So that’s why love is the most important virtue! [A-ha moment alert!]

All this talk about our heavenly inheritance really makes me think about why I made the decisions I have lately…or why I havent made them yet! I think some of those decisions would have been made differently if I really did have the mindset of gaining an inheritance in heaven. And we all know that the decisions we make direct our future!

Living with the wrong mindset means we are going to miss out on a lot of Gods blessings. So let’s aim skyward…and BEYOND!

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Fragile Emotions and Rough Days

Heart on my sleeve

If you’re anything like me, most days you’re either on a happy high floating to the sun or laying in the dirt next to the worms and it doesn’t take much to set you off in either direction. When those rough waves come, I’m knocked down in a second and the I’m caught in a downward spiral wallowing in negative thoughts and over focusing on all the wrong insignificant details. You see, I wear my heart on my sleeve and because it is so open and vulnerable, it gets hurt easily…and I also get depressed easily. Since my mom suffered from clinical depression, I have a good chance of falling into that trap also and my personality doesn’t help either. I have learned to be carful but I have also learned that for every negative there are two positives if not more! Here is what my fragile emotions have taught me:

1. Compassion & Sympathy: Because I know how it feels to be hurt I am extra sensitive to the feelings of others which has taught me to be a more caring and compassionate person. I know how to treat people right and I am more aware of how something I say or do might affect someone else.

2. A Push In The Right Direction: Whenever I get into my depressing moods, the first person it drives me to is Jesus. He has always been my number one comforter and he can turn my mood around so quickly. I will go from sad tears to tears of joy and thankfulness in minutes! It is in Him I find identity and purpose and I am reminded to look ahead to things above which brings me to my next point-

3. Focusing On The Right Things: Because of my fragile emotions, I have to be extra carful in my way of thinking. It drives me to focus on heavenly things; the things that really matter! It’s a good reminder because most of the time I discover that the things bringing me down don’t matter. Then I can easily climb out of the pit I fell in.

4. A Sensitive Conscience: It is easy for me to weed out the dirt hidden in my heart. I can clearly see my true intentions, reasons, lies, stubbornness, hate, greed, and all the negatives. Because of my sensitivity, I can get weighed down easily so when it comes to purifying myself and asking for forgiveness, I know what to apologize for and admit.

I think the main thing to remember is that God made you the way you are for a reason and there are always positives for your personality. God wants to use you for who you are. Don’t focus on the negatives. We are ALL imperfect but God never intended us to wallow in our imperfections but instead praise God himself more for His perfection.

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