Friday, September 21, 2012

Love vs. Fear

"For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, "Abba, Father." -Romans 8:15 NKJV

I keep reading this verse over and over and you know what word keeps ringing in my ears? The word 'again'. This one word stands out to me because it means to fall back into something or to repeat. This word implies that at one time we were enslaved to fear. This happened due to the fall of man in the garden of Eden. We all know we are in a constant battle, as Ephesians 6:12 talks about, not against flesh and blood but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. There are two things at war, love and fear. 

You see, when Jesus died on the cross, He took away everything that happened with the fall of man in the Garden of Eden. Jesus fulfilled the Law and gave us His righteousness, He took our place. Yet we still find ourselves battling against fear. Fear tells us that we are not good enough, that God is mad at us, and that we are unworthy of love and of live. Fear keeps us quiet, it silences our voice, and can haunt and taunt. BUT We Are NO Longer under fear. We are adopted by love. We have LOVE on our side! 

The Spirit of adoption tells us we are loved, accepted, pleasing to God. God chose you and wanted you. It's amazing to me every time I see a picture of what Jesus went through on the cross the scripture always come to my mind, "and for the Joy set before Him, He endured the cross." You give God joy as His daughter. You are His Joy! He did everything for you. I know that God doesn't want you enslaved to fear. He gave us a spirit of Power, Love, and a Sound mind not of fear. 

He is your father, it doesn't matter what your past is or what line of heritage you came from, you have been adopted by love. When fear tries to overtake you, remember love. When fear tries to silence your voice about your Faith in God or about anything, remember Love. Remember how loved you are by your Abba, Father. There is freedom in Christ. Love has set us Free. I encourage you to Read Romans 8 and really ponder and meditate on what God is speaking to you. 

Friday, August 31, 2012

On Purpose

   In no way am I an expert on the father/daughter relationship. Relationships never arrive at perfection, they are a continuing process of effort, time, patience, love and the list continues. There are times I get irritated at my father and my father gets irritated at me but when there is a healthy relationship established it is easier to keep going on in life without being offended by the other person. It's about understanding who they are and what is going on in their world. It's so easy, especially being a women, to get caught up in our emotions and the way we feel instead of stepping down, separating ourselves from emotion and evaluating the situation. Some things you just have to let go and trust God. Other things might need to be discussed with healthy confrontation. For more about healthy confrontation click here 
 What does the bible have to say about relationships?

Philippians 2:3-4
"Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself. Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others."

Philippians chapter 2 has a lot of great things to say about relationships. It discusses how to be like Christ. Restoring a relationship doesn't happen by chance or luck but through the grace of God. It is through meditating, understanding, and applying scripture into your daily life. Believe me, it is not always easy but the more you let go of yourself and pursue God the easier it becomes. When we make known are weaknesses to the Lord and let go, His grace becomes all we need. It isn't through our own strength. 

Challenge for you: On purpose esteem, which means to regard highly with respect and admiration, your father. Look for something that interests him that both of you could spend time together. On purpose, make that phone call and talk about whatever he wants too. Go fishing with him even if it grosses you out! Take him out to lunch, play a game of checkers. Whatever it might be do something to place high value upon him with respect and admiration for being your dad. Love him through the grace of God no matter what has happened in life. Now is the time for restoration, not tomorrow. Start small. You don't have to do something big in your eyes, just take a step and watch what God will do! 

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Almost Finished

It's been a long time coming but I finally have the official title of the book! It is called, "Abba, A Daughter's Cry". I had been going back in forth between titles and none of them seemed to fit. The night before I had to give my editor the final title, I asked the Lord to give me a title. I felt like I needed to be still, listen and keep my mind from wandering and I knew the Lord would answer me. There is a verse in Romans 8 that talks about being children of God and since we are children of God we can call Him Abba, Father. That's when the title Abba, A Daughter's Cry came to my mind. I knew in a moment that was the perfect title for the book because as Daughters our hearts long and cry out for a father, and not just any father but a good father. We have a longing in our hearts to call out to God and call Him Abba.

This will be the front cover of the book. I absolutely love the colors and the font. I also love open fields. They remind me of freedom. I love how the wind blows the grass in the field because it looks as if it is dancing. The clouds in the distance represent storms in life but the brightness of the field brings joy and hope. Abba, a daughter's cry, is about the storms in a relationship between a father and a daughter. It is also about discovering God's heart as a Father which leads to restoration between a father and a daughter. The book isn't very lengthy because I wanted to keep it short. It is simply a guide to lead you closer to discovering God's heart for you and how to have a relationship with your dad.

I have not been told a release date yet, but I am hoping for sometime in July. They will be printing off a couple of copies and mailing them to me to look over and once I give the final 'OK' marketing will take off!

Romans 8:14-16 "For all who are led by the Spirit of God are children of God. So you have not received a spirit that makes you fearful slaves. Instead, you received God's Spirit when he adopted you as his own children. Now we call him, "Abba, Father." For his spirit joins with our spirit to affirm that we are God's children. 

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Looking for...Something?

Things have been so busy lately with finishing this season of my life. I am down to the final edit and am signing off for a completed, edited manuscript! Exciting times. The book will be moved onto production for book cover and layout designs. I am hoping for a release date around the end of May beginning of June!

I have been wondering what encouraging words I could say to you today. So how about something I am learning??? I have been looking for something. Not a material thing or object or person. It isn't anything  you would think about consciously throughout your day. I have been on the search for acceptance. It's funny how you search for it with out realizing you are searching until you have a moment and realize what is happening.

Key words: searching and realizing.

To be real with you, I have no idea what will happen with my book. I don't have any great people following it, I don't really have anyone "launching" me, and I don't know what to expect. I am searching for something. I am searching for acceptance for who I am and what I feel called to do with my life.Then I had this moment of realization. In the midst of tears free falling from my face I realize it doesn't matter because God is following my book. My Father, God, is sending me with a word from His heart to His daughters and He knows exactly where I will go and what I will do. The best part about this 'realization' is that I know God accepts me for who I am and I don't have to go looking for it.  I think this is what everyone is looking for and that is why people get hurt because they don't feel accepted. Every now and then I will feel that longing for acceptance and I stop in my tracks, and turn my attention towards the thoughts of my Father, God. If you stay in moments of longing for acceptance you will never be satisfied and will always end up hurt and in a pity party. What we are all looking for is acceptance from God and He accepts you.

 Think about what it is in life you want. What are you looking for beneath the smiles, handshakes, and conversations you have with people? Sometimes you will be misunderstood in life, sometimes people will let you down, sometimes people will promote you and encourage you but remember through it all, the good and the bad, at the end of the day all that matters is that you KNOW you are accepted by God and fully pleasing to Him and that you are loving Him with your life.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Editor's notes

I am so excited to have received my manuscript back from my editor! I love all the advice she gave me and will be diligently working this next couple of weeks on my edits! I thought I wouldn't like this part as much but today when I sat down to review, it was amazing. I love seeing and rereading what the Lord gave me. I am left in bewilderment and awe that God allowed me to write and has brought me this far! I just worked on the intro and first chapter this morning but while I was writing I stumbled upon this thought...

This book is about revealing God's heart as a father as well as restoring a relationship with a father. So as I was rewording and going into more depth on some things I wrote, I found John 14:3," When everything is ready, I will come and get you, so that you will always be with me where I am."(NLT). I was explaining how God is omnipresent and always with us but then I saw how much God longs for us to always be with Him. It was a thought that never really crossed my mind. I know God is always with me but He actually desires me to always be with Him. Take a moment and think about that.

My father is a policeman. He is a protector. Sometimes I view God as my protector as the reason He is always with me... and because He loves me and is God. I knew also that God longs for us to spend time with Him and be with Him but I never really thought about the reason God is preparing a House with rooms for us so we can be with Him wherever He is. And it isn't a control issue... you need to be by my side. No, it's a deep love that longs to be near a child.  This is proof that God longs for us to be close to Him and not just God being close to us. 

He really is a father who cares for His children, watches over them and wants the very best for them. 

Encouragement of the day: God longs for you to be with Him wherever He is. Think about how much God is in love with you. He is preparing a place for you so you can be with Him. Even though He is with you always, He wants you to be with Him.  You can never get enough of God's Love.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

"I am right, you are wrong..."

I am sure many of you have felt like you were right and others were wrong or maybe you had someone close to you tell you that you were wrong and they were right. It seems like a never ending battle that lends itself to casualties of war...

Relationships, in my opinion, have never ending conflict - good or bad. Conflict is generally viewed as bad to some people, but it doesn't have to be. There are a couple of key things to remember during conflict. (drum roll please)    The term.....Naive Realism.

Naive Realism is a social psych term that means each person believes they see the world how it truly is. Everyone has a perception of the world and in their opinion they have the correct version.

What does this mean? How can it help?

In regards to relationship with your dad or anyone else, remember when they tell their opinion on a matter (unless they state they are open) they truly believe what they think is the correct answer to life. **It's okay to disagree** however, the point where conflict turns from good to bad is when the feeling (perception) of attack happens. I think it is natural to become defensive when you hear someone implement you are wrong and they are right. But keep your cool, because now you know they see the world how it is ;) and you see the world how it really is. This is the point of difference. It is good to hear other people's opinions about their perception of the world... it might change yours or help you understand where they are coming from.

Try not to jump the gun and defend yourself but listen with an open ear. Some people might be stubborn and don't want to hear your opinion because it is different than yours. Keep calm and make a decision to speak or not to speak. Sometimes actions can be better than words. Live out your belief to change someone's perception more than just telling them your opinion (as long as it lines up with the word of God!)

I believe [and I am right ;)] that knowing about naive realism can help people communicate and listen to each other better. Give it a try.... it's helped me.

Encouragement of the day: James 1:19 "...let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger;" (english standard version) Really listen to what others are saying. They will see your authenticity and it will draw them to God. It will help flourish communication and relationships. Trust is developed when you can openly express your opinions to someone without defense. Be that for someone. This can especially be used if there was an argument in your family...everyone has a different perception of what happened.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

A Dirty Love

I hope my title caught your attention to read this post! I am trying to think of creative titles :) You are probably really curious why the title is "Dirty Love" especially in today's world. Take the time with me to revisit a story that can easily be skipped over. It's the story of creation...

Genesis 1 talks about how God spoke everything into existence and "It was Good." God thought of something, said a word, and there it was. Move ahead to Genesis 2 and we see how God formed man from the dust. 

                   I want you to get the right image here, so visualize with me. God is forming man with His hands and creating man in His image. I wonder what words and songs God was singing or thinking while He was forming, creating man. Then God looks at His creation and breathes a breath of life into the man's nostrils (verse 7). To breathe into someone's nostrils you have to be face to face and with that breath of air man awakened to life. I wonder what that moment looked like when God saw his creation face to face, eye to eye and his creation looked back at Him. What a sweet, intimate moment. I wonder what their first words were. I wonder what happened in those sweet moments. How joyful God must have felt to see the longing of His heart living and breathing before Him. Then God placed man into the Garden of Eden. 

You see, this image is so sweet because beloved, you are more than just a word spoken or a thought. God in His greatness took the time to form you. You truly are fearfully and wonderfully made. Take Genesis chapter 2 and pair it up with psalm 139 and get the right image of how much God loves you. I have to write out ps. 139 because it is too sweet to pass up. (for my notes on ps. 139 check out the post "my favorite")

Psalm 139

1 O Lord, You have searched me and known me.
2 You know my sitting down and my rising up; You understand my thought afar off.3 You comprehend my path and my lying down, And are acquainted with all my ways.4 For there is not a word on my tongue, But behold, O Lord, You know it altogether.5 You have hedged me behind and before, And laid Your hand upon me.6  Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; It is high, I cannot attain it...
13 For You formed my inward parts; You covered me in my mothers womb.14 I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Marvelous are Your works, Andthat my soul knows very well.15 My frame was not hidden from You, When I was made in secret, And skillfully wrought in the lowest parts of the earth.16 Your eyes saw my substance, being yet unformed. And in Your book they all were written, The days fashioned for me, When as yet there were none of them.17 How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O God! How great is the sum of them!18  If I should count them, they would be more in number than the sand; When I awake, I am still with You...
God placed Adam into the Garden of Eden because He made him in the secret place and adam was skillfully wrought in the lowest parts of the earth. Just like all of God's children. From the beginning God was showing us how much He loved us by how He created us. This psalm is so dear to my heart because of the passion and love exuberayting from it. 
Encouragement: I pray you would reread this love story of how God created man and you would see your story in it. You would see how much God is in love with you and how much He desires and cares for you. You aren't just a word or a thought but formed by the very hands of God. Everything God makes is good. You are good. You are created in His image. You are created in Love. You are created for Love. You are created to walk with God. He is a good Father. He loves you. 

Monday, January 9, 2012

What does it mean to be a child?

I am sure you all are wanting to know more about my book. So this post will be more on topic of the book. 

"...Let the little children come to Me, and do not forbid them; for of such is the kingdom of God. Assuredly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God as a little child will by no means enter it." Mark 10:14-15 (emphasis mine)

A father cannot be a father without having a child. So we need to really see ourselves as God as our father and us as His children. Now, I don't know about you but I have always wondered what it meant by receiving the kingdom of God like a child. I love being around children they are a lot of fun. One thing I noticed about children is that they will believe anything you tell them! Have you ever wondered why they will? It is because of innocence they believe. A young child's brain hasn't developed to understand the difference between reality and fantasy or abstract thoughts: They don't analyze a situation. They trust and follow because of love. I really believe God is looking for us to have pure innocence before him to trust and follow Him because of love. Because He loves us. 
     Innocence means to be free from moral wrong. Jesus gave us back our Innocence when He died for us. It is by his blood that we are made clean and pure. You can't earn it. It is a free gift, called grace. 

Because of Love, Jesus gave us grace. Grace gives us innocence. Innocence lets our minds be pure from evil and moral wrong so we can believe. Belief allows us to trust. Trust allows following. And we follow because of Love. God is always the Alpha and Omega. The beginning and end. He is LOVE. Love will always be the beginning and the end. It was for Love God made man. It was for Love God gave Christ to redeem us. And it is for Love He is coming again. Everything He does is Love because it is who He is.

Have you ever watched little children imitate their parents? It is because they love and admire them so much and they want to be just like them. Think back to the authorities you had in your life growing up. The ones who showed you genuine love and respect were so much easier to listen and obey and you wanted to be like them and not disappoint them. I think that is why Jesus always did what He saw the father doing because He wanted to be just like him. Love is the greatest key to life. Love is why we exist. It was all for LOVE and will always be. 

Love gives grace, restores innocence, causes one to believe and trust which leads to obedience and following what their father does. 

Encouragement for the day: Know the Father loves you. You are His and He is yours. You are His child. He longs for you to spend time with Him. How do you spend time? Read His word, meditate on it, and worship. Listen and be still and know GOD IS IN LOVE WITH YOU. He doesn't see the mess ups and the screw ups. He sees His sons' blood washing over you because you are HIS. You are pure and innocent before Him because He loves you.   So...          "Fall in Love with the Love of God today!"

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Time keeps on Going

I can't believe it is 2012! It seems as a kid time went by SOOOO slow but now it is as if time flies by with or without you. As I was falling asleep last night thinking about the day ahead of me I realized,

"Time waits for no one." 

It was a weird thought, but true. Time is valuable you can't buy it, you can't earn it, it's just there and if you don't make the most of it, it will keep on going without you. Sometimes I get to the end of the day and realize, "What did I do today, and where did the time go?"

It's funny to me how time goes at the same pace day in and day out, it never changes (unless for daylight savings). But to us it can either go by fast or slow, yet it is the same seconds, minutes, and hours throughout life.

I started thinking...

  • What am I doing with my time?
  • How effective am I being?
  • Am I putting God first?
These are good questions to ask yourself. Remember "Time waits for no one," it will leave you behind, right on schedule or even ahead if you use it wisely. 

And Speaking of time, my book begins the first stage of production in 'copyediting' for the month of January. I won't hear much from the editors this month. They will be looking at grammar, punctuation and spelling. In February they will begin Conceptual Editing which will be for the flow of the book. So time will continue and remain slow for me in the month of January on my behalf with the book. Until next time, Be blessed and know you are deeply Loved by God!

Encouragement for the day: Make the most of the time you have been given and spend it with people you love, get to know someone new, and work on restoring broken relationships. Relationships take time. They don't form or fix in minutes but with patience, prayer, and positive thoughts.