Blessed to be Broken

God's not finished with me yet!

His Grace Covers

grace3

I love my mother, but I can’t say I always like my mother.  Now I could go into the thousand little things that rub me the wrong way about her, but we’re taught as Christians for our words to uplift not tear down.  On the flip side, I”m sure I have the propensity to rub her the wrong way as well.   Although, I can’t imagine that (total sarcasm).  Maybe that’s part of the reason when it was time to leave home, I went sprinting for the nearest way outta dodge, so to speak. For 20 of those years I was fortunate enough to live just about as far away from NY as I could get while still being in the US.  Key words being “just about.”

Living in AK. I learned a thing or two about moose.  I was intrigued by these lovable monstrosities.  I loved the way they sauntered from yard to yard, neighborhood to neighborhood, and right out into traffic without a care in the world. The only time I ever really heard of a moose getting all riled up was if you got too close to the baby moose.  Thankfully, I was never witness to such a scene.  I knew if I saw a young ‘un, I’d better high tail it in another direction. I would cross the street, go through ditches, scale fences if need be and stay inside the safety of whatever building or vehicle I was in until the “danger” was over.

It was something I could see, something I knew I could avoid.  It’s easy to avoid the danger when it’s out in plain view.  But what about the times when the danger isn’t obvious and you don’t see the “attack” coming, or as you see the “attack” coming, instead of running in the other direction, you run head on, full steam ahead? 

Before Christ, I always chose to head into the fray with my mom in full steam ahead mode.  Oh, how that woman could push every single one of my “how dare she…who does she think she is” buttons.  I’m a grown woman after all and I don’t have to live the life she thinks I need to live and then…… ”who is she….like she didn’t make a mess of her life,” and seriously, “what did she have to offer me?”

Sometimes I felt quite victorious when we both hung up in fits of anger. Better yet, now I wouldn’t have to speak with her for weeks, cause I sure wasn’t going to apologize for the argument she started. How awesome was I that I just put the smack down on my mom and used all the big words I know to put her in her place?  Can anyone relate?  If you can, then you know, the weeks afterward that you didn’t speak, weren’t peaceful, because the argument was replayed over and over inside your head. It was then that I would think of things I could’ve said to prove my points even better.  In fact, I would think to myself, “when I speak to my mom again, I’m so working those points into the conversation.”  Harrumph…I’ll show her!!   

How unhealthy is that? Can you just feel the burden I placed on my “victorious” self? There’s a reason God says, “In your anger do not sin:” Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry,” Ephesians 4:26 (NIV) Anger is not from God, He is a God of peace.  The enemy will have you replaying the hurtful event over and over.  Why?  It’s simple really…because your focus is now where the enemy wants it.  Is it on the goodness of God?  No!! You’re now playing all over the devil’s playground, and I don’t know about you, but my experiences there have taught me that playground straight up sucks!  

Therein lies God’s amazing grace. Christ came in, plucked me out of the pit, I dug over the years and rescued me. Every day He lovingly shows/guides me with His Word on how to be the person He created me to be.  Now, that’s a realm where I can flourish and grow and play to my heart’s content.  By being obedient and submissive to His teachings, I can go to Him any time of the day or night and cry out to my Daddy for assurance of who I am in Him and receive all the love He has to give. In case you haven’t heard, God’s love doesn’t run out.  Can I get an Amen!!

I would like to say I have it all figured out, that I know exactly how to deal with my mom and she can’t phase me at all with her words.  But, that’s not true.  To be honest, I sometimes feel even more vulnerable when an “attack” happens.  She still has the “power” to make my heart hurt, and tears fall down my face.  But, there’s a huge difference now.  While I may want to feed into the unhealthy frenzy, I know I don’t have to defend myself and who I am to her.  I am accepted and loved just how I am by the King and Creator of the Universe!! 

When I feel offended or hurt by what my mom says, I have a solid Rock to stand on.  I can go to the Word of my Father and receive what He tells me about who I am in Him.  And if I “blow it,” I can go to my Father with a repentive heart and His Grace Covers me.  Doesn’t give me the license to sin freely, just lets me know, when I make a mess, I don’t have to wallow in it.  And neither do you!!  Let the Grace of God cover you, then take that godly grace and share it abundantly. Oh, and don’t be surprised if you have to be the one to apologize first, the results may just surprise you!!  And as I make my trek with God, I can see how He’s working in her life, and the small changes being made in her, but I more notice the changes He is doing in me.  And while I still stumble, I’ve never been more at peace with my life.  Thank you Lord, for calling my name!!

Have you made peace with our Savior?  Do you feel that something is just not right, that there must be something more? That’s not a worldly “thing” calling out to you…that’s your Heavenly Father.  No earthly “treasure” can fill that void.  I know, I tried for far too many years to fill it with all the wrong things.  Will you answer His call?  I guarantee He won’t hang up and His treasure won’t fail and can’t be taken from you!!

1 Comment »

In God’s image

photographer

Would you just look at that giant fat face?  School pictures were not a favorite thing of mine.  I dreaded that day and it seems I was never disappointed with the “face” that would stare back at me.  It was like the photographer knew just when to click the camera that would capture the worst image.  Sometimes I wondered who that person was in the photo, because it sure didn’t look like the girl I saw staring back at me from the mirror.

School pix

My mother never liked having her picture taken.  Growing up and even now she does not want her picture taken for various reasons.  I wonder when it was that I picked up that same fetish…..”oh, don’t take my picture, I can’t stand to have my picture taken.”  There are a number of pictures out there with my hands in front of my face. I hate the way I look and I can pick myself apart and tell you all the flaws better than a magnifying glass.

The other day a friend of mine said that she and her family were waiting to have a family portrait taken until her and her husband lost all the weight they were trying to shed.  I didn’t think too much about it until I got home. A very sober thought hit me and I remembered a couple of verses pertaining about tomorrow.  James 4:13-16 (NIV) reads:

Now listen, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.” Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. Instead, you ought to say, “If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that.” As it is, you boast in your arrogant schemes. All such boasting is evil.”

 And then there’s Matthew 6:34 (NIV), which states:

Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”

While the Bible never says the exact phrase, tomorrow is not promised, it’s pretty much understood that at any given time, we can be called by our Heavenly Father to go home.  In fact I had it put very abruptly to me once by my English teacher in the ninth grade, “your main purpose in life is to die.”  Say what?!! That was a reality I wasn’t ready to hear, but there it was and I chose to put that statement in the recesses of my brain. But, I’ve never been able to totally forget it and I wonder how many memories I stopped or missed out on because I wouldn’t allow my picture to be taken. 

As I sat here thinking about missed opportunities an older school picture of mine popped up in my head.  Blech!!  Of all the pictures to pop in my head, why that one?!  Oh, that’s why.  Okay, okay, I asked earlier and “You’re” showing me. I hemmed and hawed and I cringed and thought, “I’m going to have to go through soooo many pictures to find that one.” So I chose to not bother in the search because I already knew what it looked liked….it was etched in my brain.  Instead, I went about my day and eventually went to bed.

“Don’t put off until tomorrow, what you can to do today.”  That’s exactly what I did and now it’s still “nagging at me this morning. Why do I wait when I know what I’m called to do? I opened the lid to the mass of pictures not in any kind of real order, some in boxes, some in bags, some in albums and I reached down to one of the boxes and there on the very top was the very picture I hated from school. 

I plucked it up and stared at the picture, started to pick apart all that was wrong with it and then my heart softened as I heard God say, “why are you condemning my creation? That is my daughter whom I love very much.”  I started to cry and realized how hard I’ve been on myself for far too many years.  I allowed my own words to beat myself up over and over again.  So I looked at the picture with fresh eyes and I hugged the picture to my chest and apologized to her; to me

Somewhere along the line, I let this particular picture define how I would always look in pictures.  I tell myself now; it’s just a picture, a moment in time captured to reflect a day God allowed me to live.  It’s a memory to be cherished, to laugh or maybe even shed a few tears over.  Is it my best picture?  Ohhhhh noooooo!! Does it define who I am?  Not by a long shot.  But it defined me, for far too long. 

But this day….today…..I am here, I am loved, I am thankful, and tomorrow is not promised.  If we’re constantly waiting for the perfect opportunity, the perfect weather, or for physical perfection, then I dare say we’re wasting away before our own eyes and missing out on far too much this life has to offer.

We only get this life; we choose how we spend it.  We can believe in the lies of the enemy or we can stand firm on the Rock and know no matter how our “picture” looks, we are a beautiful creation, handpicked and knitted in our mother’s womb.  We’re not some turkey carcass that gets picked apart for good meat, soup parts or trash, we’re human beings created in God’s image.  God doesn’t pick us apart, He sets us apart.  If we’re too busy beating ourselves up, how can we be the light that needs to shine for others to see?  Ouch!!  Message received. 

Thank you Lord for showing me who I am in you! This coming weekend I will be in our town’s annual Christmas parade as one of the most popular characters.  I didn’t know Mickey Mouse was one of the most popular characters at the time I said I would do it. Immediately thoughts came into my head….will people take my picture? I hate having my picture taken. People will make fun of me. Maybe someone else should do this….someone skinnier, someone….STOP.  Are those the things God would say? Not at all.  He would tell me I am well equipped and more than a conqueror and perfectly able.  So bring on the picture taking as I let my light shine for all to see!!

Do you know who you are in Christ?  Do you know the power you posses when you realize not who you are, but WHOSE you are?  Come to Jesus, accept Him as your Lord and Savior and begin to know what you were made for.     

6 Comments »

Good Enough

iStock_000012396048XSmall2

Over on the Proverbs 31 site, we are having our weekly blog hop day for our current On-line Bible Study…A Confident Heart, by Renee Swope. It’s an awesome book and highly recommended for anyone no matter where you’re at in life.  I liked the idea of writing myself a letter, that because of Jesus, I am good enough.  I walked through too much of this life thinking just the opposite.  I still have days that I struggle and I’m thankful for these times because I can lean even more into the love of my Father and let His truth wash over me and fill me like nothing of this world can.  Because of Jesus, I am good enough.

Dear Defeated,

Sorry if this shocks you, but something tells me you’re going to need this! You’re gonna go through some serious stuff.   Some of this “stuff” will be caused by the people in your life, but most of this “stuff” you’ll do because you left someone behind.  You’re going to make a lot of mistakes and you’re going to put yourself before others and commit acts that will put such a burden of shame on you that one day you’ll be filled with so much pain, loneliness, regret, and hate, you will decide to take your own life.

Funny, I don’t ever remember saying “when I grow up,” I would love to be filled with self-loathing, low self-esteem, and thinking I would never be good enough.  But, that’s exactly what happened from the choices I made following after the worst taskmaster who found pure joy seeing me right where he wanted me. Defeated.

Dated: March 1963 – September 2010

Dear Daughter of the Most High King,

Yes, that’s who I am.  I am not defeated, I am raised up.  I am not the things of my past, I am free from condemnation!  I was bought at a great price, and I am born of God, and the evil one cannot touch me. No longer do I bear the pains from the sins of my past.  I am dearly and wholly loved by the King of Kings.  I am redeemed, chosen, renewed, blameless and holy. I am a citizen of Heaven.  I am saved by the grace and mercy of God.  By myself I could do nothing, but in Christ, I can do all things!  I am forgiven, I am loved, I am His and He is mine.  You see, the one I left behind, went before me and is making my paths straight.  I am not defeated, I am victorious, and I am good enough because His goodness makes me good enough!  Glory to God the Father—all the glory is His.

Dated: Nov 2013 – eternity

Have you accepted Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior.  He will meet you where ever you are!!  You’re never too far gone for His loving embrace!  He truly is the only way!

(Verses: Romans 8:1-2, Philippians 3:20 and 4:13, 1 John 5:18) 

5 Comments »

Clothes and Curves

fashionable encouragement

#UNFILTERED

IN SPEECH. IN CONDUCT. IN LOVE. IN FAITH. IN PURITY.

His Love is Enough

This is My Story...

Just Love

My journey through the process of understanding true love- as God intends.

Living With Eyz2God

One Day at a Time...

Saved By Grace

An imperfect woman with a perfect Jesus