Saturday, October 26, 2013

Worship Freely Tunes {22}

I'm a little late on the music pick for this week but here it is and I guarantee that it was worth the wait...I love these people's hearts for the Lord. Their music makes me smile and I agree: There's something about what's homemade that makes things so much better. Bringing our intimacy with God to the public. Love it, truly.

"Second Chance"- Rend Collective Experiment

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

The Process: Loving People & Giving Your Life in Prayer

At one point along our spiritual journey we will all come face to face with the realization of what love really means. I'm talking about moving in God's powerful, transforming, and sin-covering love. Whether someone in your family hurts you, your best friend betrays you, your brother and sister's in Christ speak falsely against you the reality is we're in a hurting world that is crying out for the real children of God to rise up and take their place. The children of God that forgive seven times seventy times, that speak life, that pursue holiness, that move in the spirit, that walk in faith, that promote true peace, that go forth in spiritual warfare, that pray without ceasing, and that love. And that love. And that love. And that love! The sooner we realize that the moment we decide to follow Jesus we're all automatically walking as a work in progress along the narrow road, the sooner we can receive grace and give it to other's. Because we are all like clay jars in the hands of the potter, being perfected in Christ until Jesus returns for us, His bride. All of us. I've struggled with this and I've seen other children of God battle with this type of attitude: Well at least now we're on the road you know so we're ok. No. Oh, no. I was so wrong thinking this. We are all being perfected and whether we'd like to suppress the fact or not, we all have a plank in our eye that still needs to be removed before we can take care of our brother's or sister's plank. God is becoming strong in our weaknesses day by day as we're seeking Him so as we walk forth lets encourage one other, rebuke in love, forgive, and move forward. I'm going through something so difficult right now that if you were to have told me growing up what was to come I would have fled in fear. I can trust God with my life's picture now. I can trust God with the people I love and know that even though I thought my plan was beautiful for them God's is spectacular and full of glory. There's a scripture that the Holy Spirit has been bringing to me through this rough time and it is...

(Luke 6:31) Do to others as you would have them do to you.

This verse has been becoming flesh in me. Forgive as you would like to be forgiven. Love as you would like to be loved. Encourage as you would like to be encouraged. Live the life that you would like to see others live in Christ. These are true words but accomplishing them  is easier said than done. The only way that I can explain to you how I'm doing this is by telling you that through my process I've faced situations where I know I should forgive but couldn't so I prayed and literally cried out with all my heart for God to do in me what I couldn't and I've failed miserably sometimes. But as time has past and I've matured in faith doing the impossible has become possible because the one who makes things possible is invading my heart and emotions more and more. Simple truths of maturing in Christ are prayer, fasting, and filling ourselves with God's Word. The gospel. Jesus. As you walk more and more you won't have to ask WWJD because His Word will slowly become flesh the more you read, fast, pray, and apply

There's one well known fact that we have all come to know and if you haven't trust, you will know: When we face hard times we come to know who our true friends are. I'm here to tell you that when you go through trials or you or someone you love stumbles you will realize who's a mature christian, who's not, and who never was.  Those that rebuke you in love and stand by your side by breathing Christ's redemptive power and loving grace into your life I would define as mature christians because though they too are walking in the process, the Spirit of God is at work in them revealing to them Christ-like character that is visible. The proof is in the fruit. I've been doing some things that are completely out of my character and human nature that I can only accredit to Jesus in me. I don't feel rejected and betrayed when everything in this world says I should. My culture says one thing but God's culture is above it all. I've talked to people who I thought I'd never talk to. I'm stepping into places I never in a million years thought I'd step into. And I feel peace when I really shouldn't. I really shouldn't. It isn't normal. It's God. Only God could do this!

Continual prayer has sustained me, I know. Talking to God when I wake, as I shower, in the car, between meals and classes, before bed, and during the night when I wake up and feel my spirit itching to be fed. Right now I'm battling for my best friend, praying that God's will be done in his life no matter what that looks like in God's eyes. In my eyes that picture should be so scary right now but any moment I begin to worry or he comes to my mind or I look up and see our bracelet I just pray. I don't want to block what God is doing so I pray for God's will to be done, for repentance and for a miracle. I can see that these months that I've spent specifically praying for him have been crucial because God is rearranging things not the way I wanted or would have planned but the way He knows is best. I'm thankful to have another friend who has gone through what I'm going through and is in prayer agreement with me and lifting me up and pouring out grace. I'm thankful for blessings in the middle of chaos and for love and forgiveness. My desire is to really reflect Jesus through this and while others abandon ship, I want to stand at the forefront. Even if someone doesn't know how to return love...just love like Jesus. I woke up reading The Word and the same part of a verse kept being confirmed during my morning. I'm taking a hold of it and battling through this. I encourage you today with Luke 18:1 that tells us that we should "always pray and not give up." Jesus said this. Don't give up! If an unbelieving cruel judge can be swayed by a persistent widow, will not our heavenly Father hear our prayers if Jesus made a way for us? He hears. Keep praying and let His picture be revealed in His timing. Don't lose heart. God bless and much love in Christ!

Friday, October 18, 2013

We Are Young But God is God

I've got nothing.That's a scary thought. When you feel like you have nothing to say. Like you can't explain how you feel. It's moments like these when we've got to inject ourselves with what God says. When we fill ourselves with truth suddenly our outlook on life changes. When we worship God on a daily basis with our song, with our dance, with our thoughts, with our bodies the God of all creativity begins to pour himself out on us. It's easy to get distracted and then just run with the motions of life even in our relationship with God but we can not forget that if we were created in His presence then it is only there with Him that we can come to life. For He is the God of the living. When you and I start to feel dry or like we have nothing more to offer it's time to draw near to our Lord, sit at the table and start talking. Invite The Holy Spirit to be with you no matter where you are. He's just waiting for your invite. Whatever darkness there is in us is like light to God and the more time we spend with Him the more He will invade. Wherever you go, invite the Holy Spirit and whether it is good or bad He will reveal these things to you, but you've got to let Him in to every detail of your life. Sometimes I feel like a broken record repeating myself but really the moment we realize that only a relationship with God will give us direction and the answers we need is the moment we will no longer depend on second-hand information. We can't depend on man to give us answers no matter how much revelation they have because God created us individually to have an individual relationship with each of us. 

I've learned something along my walk that I want to share with you. What The Holy Spirit has shown me is that when it comes to the children of God, He will never use a person to tell us something that He hasn't already been revealing to us first. Anything or anybody that gives us a word after that is only to serve as confirmation. So I encourage you to build your relationship with God deeper and deeper so that you become rooted in Him and won't be tossed back and forth like the wind by teachings and pretty words. Your spirit discerns what is of God and what isn't so we've got to listen carefully and be sensitive. I've walked away from so called "amazing opportunities" not because I'm crazy or scared but because God hasn't given me the green light. People of God have actually told me, "if you're waiting for an angel of God to descend from heaven and tell you to go, you're gonna be waiting all your life." I couldn't help but smile because I never thought...craziness, just craziness. You see I could have rationalized what they were saying and just gone along because these people in the natural sense are older, people of God, and dangling recordings and youth pastor titles for me in my face, but my spirit man was uneasy and rejecting this screaming no!!! in my heart. God has clearly spoken to me in the past and has confirmed things to me so for this to be said tells me this: there is no relationship with God or the relationship has grown cold. We have to learn that things aren't always what they seem and neither are people. Be on your guard always because in all reality it's not people we need to to guard ourselves from, it's the enemy who is standing right behind. For our battles are not against flesh and blood.The things of God are being done with the absence of His spirit and that right there is scary. His Word tells us that His people are destroyed because they lack knowledge. We can memorize scripture all we want because it's a powerful tool that we need but only the Spirit of God can reveal to us the exact word that we need for the present season. So while we're busy storing up we also need to listen and let God do the writing on the tablet of our heart.

(Luke 4:1-2) 
Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, left the Jordan and was led by 
the Spirit into the wilderness, where for forty days 
he was tempted by the devil.

So, when you and I are full of the spirit we will be led by the spirit. The Holy Spirit was upon Jesus in overflow mode. Full of the Spirit Jesus entered a different kind of season where all that His father had revealed to Him was about to be put to the test. For 40 days Jesus had to put up with Satan's lies. I imagine Satan taunting Him during the day and trying to scare Him during the hours of the night. I had a dream once about a year ago that I want to share. There was a spiritual battle going on in my room that I couldn't see with my eyes but I could clearly feel and discern with my spirit. I felt a heavy presence in my room surrounding me that would not let me sleep. I got a sudden urge to cover up my feet and I knew this feeling from a few years back when a battled with this because I was not right with God. This time I knew that me and God were together and I was right with Him so I had no explanation for it. I literally began to think I had done something wrong but I shut that lie out quick. A few years back I would have run to my mom's room and asked her to pray and sleep with me but I had matured in the faith since then and I knew this was something I had to take before the Lord because I had to learn to depend on Him. I must have been 18 or close to 19 years old when this happened so remember we are not defined by our age but by our walk with God. I wasn't fully baptized with the Holy Spirit yet so I couldn't begin to battle in the spirit and talk in tongues like my parents so I did what I had always seen my mom do and rebuked the devil out loud and declared that I was covered by the blood of Jesus. A peace instantly filled my heart and I was convinced that God was right there with me. I'm pretty sure before I closed my eyes I had to have asked God to reveal the unknown to me because I drifted off into a dream. In this dream I could see myself sleeping on my bed but suddenly I felt uneasy because surrounding my bed was this huge lion, roaring and pacing back and forth at the edge of my bed. I was so scared and freaking out inside but all of a sudden, and I just can't forget this: all of a sudden I heard a peaceful, deep, resounding voice that spoke to me, "It's okay, go back to sleep. The enemy can do all he wants to try to scare you but he can't get on your bed and he can't touch you." In my dream I fell asleep after hearing God's voice. I knew it was my Jesus reassuring me that He was watching over me. That's the best picture that I can use to describe having peace in the middle of a storm.

We see later three examples of how the enemy tried to tempt Jesus' flesh but because Jesus submitted His flesh to God through fasting and prayer He rejected the lies. How He rejected the lies is what excites me the most! I'm giddy literally! Seriously that's the first time I've used that word. I get a lot a bit passionate about Jesus. Anyway...He just smacked the smirk off Satan's face! The difference between the devil and Jesus is not found in knowing the Word because Jesus is the Word and Satan knows the Word because He used to worship Him. Satan threw out scriptures but Jesus threw out revealed scriptures. Full of the Holy Spirit Jesus spoke the Word that God wanted Him to know for the exact moment. There will always be times when we are bombarded by verses but only through a relationship with God can we come to know which applies when. Spirit revealed knowledge of God's Word is what will silence the noise around us that tries to drag us back and forth. The same God of yesterday is today and what He did then He continues to do today. The amazing miracles that Jesus did are being done today through His Holy Spirit and I've seen it. Never forget:

(1 Timothy 4:12) 
Don’t let anyone look down on you because 
you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech
in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity.

Do you know what God is saying to us all right here?! Look, it doesn't matter how literally old or young you are or how little or how much spiritual maturity you have at this point in and now I have called you to be an example! I have called you to be a light and shine bright on a stand regardless of whether others think you're worthy or not. They didn't call you, I did. They didn't anoint you, I did! Your God, your Creator, your savior, and redeemer. I'm here with you, walking along the same narrow road by your side shaping you along the way. So be an example to everyone who's watching, especially to your brothers and sisters in the faith. Let me change the way you talk, act around others, the way you love, the way you believe in me, and let me help you stay pure and be my holy bride here on earth. You just have to let me. Because I want to kill those old habits that hinder you from walking straight with me. I want to show you real freedom that doesn't come from a tattoo or from walking around YOLO ing everything. Just come to me I am your way, your truth, and your light. Don't forget why I saved you! There are lost souls and weary believers who need you to wake up and depend on my strength. You are young but I am who I am. So if I am who I am let all that I am change you. Let all that I am be enough for you. I desire with all my heart for people to be encouraged by your words and not tripped up. Stop trying to just get by and see how much you can get away with before it's considered a sin. Let me show you freedom. You don't need to talk like everyone else does to be heard, mu authority is enough and will get it done for you. A half truth won't change anybody because it's a lie. I want to put the whole truth that I am in you. Give out that truth and people will never be the same and will forever be changed. I desire for others to see the way you act when you're at church, at school, at work, or anywhere else and say I can see God! That will change lives! I want to show you what love really means so that you make no exceptions or preferences and so that even those who dub themselves unlovable come to know me through you. They will know forgiveness because I will give you a supernatural measure that will leave people baffled and knowing that it could only be Me in you. I'm going to show you that you can trust Me so that your faith will increase and like a child you will believe everything I tell you so that you won't be quick to run after the voice of the other. As your faith pleases Me My glory will invade and my kingdom will be established in you and through out the earth. I want to use you! Lastly, I know you can't stay pure without me in a world that promotes impurity and that is why you need to be fully baptized in my Holy Spirit. I did not bring you this far so that you could run away or give in, be bold! My Holy Spirit will teach you what is right and true so that those around you will not stumble by looking at your life but will look and be inspired to keep moving forward. You may be young but I am still God.

(Luke 10:18-21) 
He replied, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven. 
I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions 
and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you. 
However, do not rejoice that the spirits submit to you, but rejoice 
that your names are written in heaven.” At that time Jesus, full of joy 
through the Holy Spirit, said, “I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven 
and earth, because you have hidden these things from the 
wise and learned, and revealed them to little children. 
Yes, Father, for this is what you were pleased to do.

Friday, October 4, 2013

Worship Freely Tunes {21}

I love Hillsong's new album Young & Free. I mean, really. If you wanna dance for The Lord put this album on replay keep it on loop and you won't be able to contain yourself. It's not about following some movement, it's about embracing who the Lord created us to be and the fact that in Jesus we truly are young and free through His sacrifice, love, and grace. We are free because Jesus took our place, so let's walk in His freedom. Here's one of my favorite songs off the album, hope you guys enjoy!

"Wake"- Hillsong Young & Free

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

I Promise. Don't Look Back Anymore.

 Me: But Lord what about—?

God: Shh shh...

Me: But God I don't get—?

God: Shh... It's ok. I get it.

Me: So how is this gonna work out?

God: It just will. Just love me.

Me: God I do love you...but it's so confusing!!!

God: I'm not confusing beloved...I'm what you need. I'm what you've always needed, really.

Me: You are God. I'm so sorry. I'm sorry. I've let my questions come between us. Forgive me.

Jesus: I already did baby 2,000 years ago. I took care of your doubts, insecurities, and rebellions. Be free!

Me: Aww, my sweet Jesus please don't even start with that because you know I'm gonna start balling out. I love you! I love you! I love you!!!

Jesus: I love you more! I promise. Everything will come together so beautifully. We've planned it since before your birth in the secret place when you laughed and sang with us. We looked at you, smiled and wrote with true love in mind. You don't remember those things but it's all been taken care of. Don't look back anymore.

Holy Spirit: Didn't I tell you that you were dearly loved? Girl, we're crazy about you! Face it. Your heart is ours and we aren't letting go. We love you! Just remember who loved you first.

Me: I feel better. You guys always know how to make me feel better. The truth is, what's behind me is both good and bad so I find myself thinking about the good things. But then I think about the fact that You said in Your word not to look back and desire to return to the good old days. Lord I want to go from glory to glory. Why? Why do I sometimes feel like what's behind and past is as good as it's gonna get? How do I tackle that Lord?

Holy Spirit: The Spirit is willing but the flesh is weak. Keep feeding your spirit the way you have and every doubt and fear will flee. If you find yourself traveling back in your thoughts: Stop, think about my love, declare what I've promised you. Talk to me. When you're silent because you feel overwhelmed just talk to me. We've got this battle won. I know this world tries to pull you away from trusting me but don't let it! Remember I love you. Never forget. How can you, right? I will always keep reminding you.

Me: My heart is Yours. Lead the way...Oh, wait! Can we have breakfast first?

Holy Spirit: Oh yeah you eat! Sure let's go!

Me: Ha! I love you...


(Luke 1:37) 
"For no word from God will ever fail.”

(Luke 1:45) 
"Blessed is she who has believed that 
the Lord would fulfill his promises to her!”


Friday, September 27, 2013

Worship Freely Tunes {20}

Ok. If you've been on my facebook or instagram recently then you know that I can not, I repeat...can not, get this song out of my head! Last night all of our internet was out and all I had left was my handy dandy cell. I had to search for some info about Carl Rogers for my Abnormal Psychology class and low and behold I find myself a song on my history that I never searched for. Hmmm...Coincidence? I think not. You know those moments when you can't explain why you give something so insignificant your full attention? My moment right there. I went to youtube and typed in the song title and I almost wanted to cry when I heard this song. I slumped down in my bed and thought, my Jesus...It was like my spirit spoke. Hope y'all enjoy!

"Love Knows No End"- Hillsong

Monday, September 23, 2013

College Life, Dreams, & Such Things

 So far school has been interesting. Good. Great. Pretty awesome. The evening classes are new for me and I am so not used to that but throwing something different into something usual can turn out great. I don't want to turn into a what if person so every now and then why not pray through a season and then try something new, challenging, unknown? The great unknown. If I could describe my college career from the very beginning I would have to say that it's felt like an adventure. I've ventured into the great unknown with my lamp and oil following The Lord's guidance, discerning His voice, and recognizing the right open doors. Many doors will be presented but we have to know which one's are right for us and the only way to know is to be in communion with the Father. I can't say it enough. Doing life with God and God doing life with us is beautiful and what Jesus gave His life for. Before my Abnormal Psychology class started this morning I arrived early, sat in the auditorium, and continued to read through the Book of Matthew. I wanted to just jump out of my swivel chair when I read that my Lord was betrayed and sold for 30 pieces of silver. That number will forever be etched in my heart, mind, and soul. I just had a moment. I was in a lecture hall and had an intimately public moment with my Lord. This is totally off subject but I just have to throw it out there...His life He gave to pay for our ransom and though the price tag placed on Him was insulting He never put a price tag on our lives. Yup I had a moment.

Anyway, now that I've managed to throw so many details (which I really do love and I'm sure there's a point to them) out there I do want to share some pictures that have been becoming more and more clear. After graduation, when The Lord spoke to me about trading up my intended architecture career for the career He had in store for me, a new journey in my life began. Before then I was saved and in love with Jesus, spending all my time in church and stuff but I felt an abrupt turn of the wheel in my spiritual vehicle. I felt The Lord saying that that season of my life was good and necessary but it was a stepping block for what was to come. I felt Him strongly say that now in the next season's He was going to show His love for me differently because spiritual maturity was going to have to come. Every season after in some way was going to be about me learning to trust Him more, and more, and more, and even more. In the moment I was like, "Ok Lord, awesome!" Now that I look back...boy I totally understand what He was saying. The picture has become clearer and clearer. So I let go of my dreams, which were only based on my talent and experience. You'd think that it would be hard to walk into something blind, as many would say, but it wasn't. Have you ever heard the expression, love is blind? I was so in love with Jesus that it was easy to let to. His love is blind to the eyes but clear to the spirit. A few years back I wouldn't have listened, I would have rebelled but God won my heart over in His perfect timing. So The Lord caught my attention during a career day when I went in to listen to an Occupation Therapist speak. I was like, "Lord, no! What are you doing? You know I'm bad at could I ever do anything medical? That was one of the first times I felt God smile and laugh at me. Clearly in my heart I heard Him say, "Do you trust me?" I gave Him one of my usual nods and kept listening to the speaker and after ran and told my counselor and teachers that I was switching careers. I went to a small academy so everybody knew everybody basically. They were all shocked, knowing all the previous plans I had made. I had already won scholarships. The trust seasons began. It's been a journey. The Lord has been leading me almost like through a trail of breadcrumbs. He caught my attention and then I walk through the next door, giving Him all the glory now in everything accomplished. He first caught my attention with OT which then lead me to major in Rehabilitation (super broad field) with a concentration in addictions and a minor in Spanish. The Holy Spirit and I have diligently worked and toiled, and now the next door has opened. The next breadcrumb has been set before me.

{Journal Entry Excerpt: September 21, 2013} Raw, messy, and all my heart and I.

"...A professor/super cool director came to do random pop-ins in the rehab classes to talk about a Master's program in Texas Tech University (Lubbock Texas y'all) called Marriage & Family Therapy. As she was explaining...The more words she said the more "that feeling" rose and traveled from my spirit to my heart. The same feeling that I got junior/senior year during the career day thinga-ma-bob. The Holy Spirit saying this is the next door go, go, go! God told me from the very start not to worry, that all I had to do was work up until the next door that opened and so on. He was right. He always is. Trusting Him with my (using "my" so lightly) career has been easy because I've seen the fruit day, month, and year after year. I wasn't sure to go for my Master's or not deep down but this woman literally said, "Don't you even think about not going to graduate school just because you don't have the funds, we will do everything we can to help you." She talked about the great need they had for Hispanic counselors: bilingual and bicultural. I felt peace in my heart, knowing this is it, sitting there, looking up and thinking: I hear you God. It's like I've been walking and wondering what would come after (would I get my master's in Rehab even though it doesn't feel right, like this isn't it) and God answered. I feel so good right now. Though I respect the Rehab Master's program and its amazing labor with DARS, something inside me knew that that wasn't my fit. I love seeing God restore lives and the fact that He would lead me into a career like that makes me feel honored and loved and yeah, special. I know I wanted to work with the youth and families through counseling and intervention. I know God put that desire in me from the start for a reason."

I'm a junior. I graduate in 2015. The next door came early in my timing but just right right for God. He knows what He's doing. I have about two more years before this decision takes place. The moving 632 miles from home thing is crazy for me for many reasons but I trust God with my now and my future. I guess if you get anything out of this post know that falling in love with God makes you realize that the waiting periods of your life aren't meant to be suffered, but to be dearly loved. Work on trusting the Lord, it's a process and one day you'll look back and understand. Enjoy your day guys! I'm off to class! Another pebble in the stepping stones of life.

Friday, September 20, 2013

Worship Freely Tunes {19}

This song is from Kim & Skyler's newest album called "Home." The first time I heard this song I felt like finally not just a christian love song but a song that really makes me think about Jesus my bridegroom and I His bride. I think this song is really special, at least to me it is. It makes me smile. If you've never heard it have a listen and if you have share your thoughts. 

"My One And Only"- Kim Walker & Skyler Smith

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Bringing My Lamp & My Oil

(Matthew 25:1-4)
“At that time the kingdom of heaven will be like ten virgins 
who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom. 
Five of them were foolish and five were wise. The foolish ones 
took their lamps but did not take any oil with them. The wise ones, 
however, took oil in jars along with their lamps. 

The Lord has really been pressing in my spirit the story of the ten virgins toward the end of the Book of Matthew. Even though I continued to read ahead I always seemed to make my way back to that small passage in the 25th chapter. This is one of my favorite parables that Jesus taught just because it mirrors the church as His bride, Jesus as the bridegroom, and He gives us another little glimpse of what bringing His kingdom down to earth looks like. I got some info about the tradition of Jewish weddings online because I really wanted to understand the context of what Jesus was talking about: "In Jewish society, the parents of the betrothed generally drew up the marriage contract. The bride and groom would meet, perhaps for the first time, when this contract was signed. The couple was considered married at this point, but they would separate until the actual time of the ceremony. The bride would remain with her parents, and the groom would leave to prepare their home. This could take quite a while. When the home was all ready, the groom would return for his bride without notice. The marriage ceremony would then take place, and the wedding banquet would follow."

When I started to read, a picture was painted in my head of these ten young ladies, half careless and the other half expectantly waiting for the groom to arrive. I imagined their talks of what he looked like standing at the altar, of where they would live together, and when he was coming. I imagined them pacing back and forth looking out of the windows to be the first ones to run to His side. At this point he could be right around the corner or far off in the distance: It was a total surprise visit waiting to happen. For any girl it's hard to wait, can I get an amen? I can picture joy turning into expectancy, expectancy turning into impatience, and impatience turning into boredom. The young women became so tired of waiting that they fell asleep. When the bridegroom arrived at midnight to take the ladies to the banquet to celebrate, the ones that were prepared followed with their well-oiled lamps while the one's that weren't were left behind and denied entrance into the feast.

The details of this parable are so important. What the Spirit pressed in my heart was that the wise virgins that were prepared with their lamps and oil are a symbol of God's church being ready through the filling of His Word and His Holy Spirit. Psalm 119:105 automatically popped up into my head word by word and I was like yes Lord, I understand. But right after He revealed that the lamp was talking about God's Word He then spoke this strongly into my spirit: The ladies that were left out had their lamps but lacked the oil...that oil is my Holy Spirit. Without the Holy Spirit to breathe a new revelation of God's Word into our lives we the church will not see the glory of Jesus manifested here on earth. This is like supplementing His signs and wonders for a Bible study. We need the combination. We can't have one without the other. It is His desire for all of His children to move in the power of the Holy Spirit. These ten women, symbolizing the church, knew that without the oil eventually the fire was going to burn out and they would not be able to see their bridegroom coming and would either miss Him or get lost trying to go out to meet Him.

(Psalm 119:105)
Your word is a lamp for my feet,
    a light on my path.

The Bible is the instrument that The Lord provides us with so that we can follow the path that He's marked out before us and His Holy Spirit is the source of power that is needed to turn keep the fire burning. His anointing in our lives is his seal of ownership because knowing the word alone won't do it, this just opens the door for religion. We need His Word + His Holy Spirit anointing in order to produce fire (power) in our lives.

(2 Corinthians 1:21-22)
Now it is God who makes both us and you stand firm in Christ. 
He anointed us, set his seal of ownership on us, and put his Spirit 
in our hearts as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come.

We have one of those antique oil lamps at home on top of our fridge that we've conserved for years for those stormy nights when the power goes out. I want to talk a little bit about the maintenance of an oil lamp. Humor me guys I promise it's important. After you've filled the bottom glass end with oil the wick (rectangular thick stringy thingy) has to be trimmed if it's been previously used because it's all burned up. In the the parable of the ten virgins I noticed that the moment the ladies heard that the bridegroom was coming they woke up and the first thing they did was trim their lamps. They had left their lamps burning the whole time that now the time came for them to re-fuel them with some oil and a clean wick. You know that moment when you read through something but then stop, make a curious face, and then read back again? That was my aha moment. I knew that this portion of was important somehow so I said, "Holy Spirit show me, explain why this is important." He likes to flood me and that's exactly what happened and continues to happen. Just like that "wick" our spiritual lives reach points of burn out when we're stuck on old revelations and past experiences when the Holy Spirit wants to give us something fresh and new. I've been there and gosh I'm sure we all have but what He spoke into my spirit was that we need to trim off the old burned up wick. We need to throw away what we think we know about God through what we've learned so far, to make room for Him to show up in our lives a new way. We need to throw out the window what we've heard of God and prepare ourselves for daily encounters. And I'm not talking about shutting out readings or men and women of God, not at all. But I am saying that living off of second hand information is scary and not enough. We need to have a personal relationship with God and then let second hand information serve as a compliment and as confirmation for what the Holy Spirit has already revealed to us first. Let's just let our bridegroom pay us a surprise visit. Let's be ready for that visit. I'm excited!

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

In Pursuit of True Love

An unending love I seek.
A beloved with whom my heart can beat.
To feel complete.
To overflow.
An unending true love I seek.
That which this world can not offer.
For that I hunger.
I ran and ran to look for love.
I searched and searched with no one to hug.
I was tossed around by the wind.
Then suddenly I fell into true loves first kiss.
Heaven and earth once again met.
Outstretched arms held me tight.
I lifted up my eyes.
My best friend.
My lover. My prince. 
All in one.
I will pursue Him with all my love.

(Hosea 2:14) 
“Therefore I am now going to allure her; 
I will lead her into the wilderness 
and speak tenderly to her.

(Hosea 2:16)
“In that day,” declares the Lord,
    “you will call me ‘my husband’;
    you will no longer call me ‘my master.

(Hosea 2:19-20)
I will betroth you to me forever;
    I will betroth you in righteousness 
and justice, in love and compassion.
 I will betroth you in faithfulness,
    and you will acknowledge the Lord.

 I'm browsing through my Itunes and listening to some songs by Bethel, Eunice Rodriguez, and United Pursuit. Busy busy but a good break does the heart some good. I've been thinking...

True Love. I want this so bad. Whether God has someone in the future for me or not I hit a place in my heart where I just said, Lord I'm going to love you regardless, I'm going to worship you regardless. When we're called to God's purposes all of the crazy, messy, beautiful, and just plain odd things will come together in the end for our good. His word says it so I believe it. I've seen it before so why would any other case be different? I'm in the pursuit of true love. I want to constantly keep the fire burning in my heart so that the joy of my salvation never fades. And trust, things have tried to burn out my handy dandy candle. What The Lord has been placing in my heart is that He is my husband. This really hit me hard. For so long I wanted someone to touch when all this time that special someone was walking right beside me. I'm married. Bam! Right? It was like He was saying: Be faithful to me, I'm your best friend, be a friend back because it's my utmost desire to be with you. My love life???...hmmm...I want God to be my love life right now. I want the well and I need the well right now, not a bucket. I'm in pursuit of true love and the definition of love is my sweet Jesus. He's The One I need right now. Some days these words resonate while other days my heart aches because of what my heart wants but in that wilderness, in that visible solitude God is at work. The moment we feed our Spirit Man He takes over and our heart is at peace and the way we perceive our surroundings changes. I pray for a mind renewal in the wildernesses of our lives and for true love to come forth. That's a good place to start, falling in love with The Lord. And if we're already head over heals in love, let's go further and deeper. There's no end. There's always more we can give and there's always more we can be given.

"The wilderness will contain our greatest difficulties,
but also some of our most glorious experiences."
                                                                                               -Rick Joyner 

Friday, September 13, 2013

It's Finally Here!

I'm officially 2 decades old! Gosh! If that statement doesn't make me feel old I don't know what will. I've pre-written this and scheduled it so I'm not really the birthday girl until Friday September 13th, when y'all actually get to see this post. This is the day a dream, an idea, birthed out of the heart of God came to be. From the secret place I said farewell and see you soon to my heavenly Daddy and was sent to earth to my family. I'm so grateful. I feel into loving, Godly arms. It's a quiet gratitude that is slowly but surely spilling over year after year, day after day, moment after moment. Every year on this day I say I feel the same but I feel and look different. I'm just not the same. I've been molded. Shaped. Torn. Re-made. The little girl I once was is no more but I like this girl so much more...she's been touched by God. She's like clay in the Potter's hands. What word's of wisdom can I say other than these:'s been quite an unbelievable journey and the path has been narrow. Things (special as well as hurtful) I've had to leave behind to follow the path toward my sweet Jesus. It's been a different kind of freedom along this path, one that I would not trade for anything. It's freedom to truly live and love. The "things" that I've left behind do not compare to the love and security I feel knowing that no matter what God is with me. I've learned that though the walk may seem lonely at times in actuality it's so not because the whole time Jesus is walking right beside us, our gaze often lingers elsewhere though. I've learned that earthly relationships (family, friends, special someone) are temporary so it's best to show the love of Christ while we can because when we've freely been given love it's only natural for us to freely give it back. I've learned that walls are terrible things to build between us and God and that every day is a new day to let God tear them down, do some lovin', so they never go up again. God makes all things beautiful in His perfect timing. Time is not ours but God's, and I like it better that way. I like Him being in complete control. I'm feeling pretty reflective right now so...

How bout I promise to post some fun updates this weekend?
I promise. Updates to be continued on this post Saturday.
God bless!




I spent a fun quiet evening with my Mom, Dad, and sister. They asked if I wanted a party as usual but I just wasn't feeling it. I just wanted to soak in so many new things with those who have truly been with me since day 1. I really loved talking with my parents at the table, opening an unexpectedly hidden present, reading the Word of God together, having a B-B-Q under our roof as September rain made its grand entrance. There were so many things for my to thank God for. One of my favorites was weighing in on my birthday and realizing that I had shed 6 lbs in four weeks. That was a good moment. The process. The process. God just makes it all work out.

Saturday, September 7, 2013

One Of Those Weekends...

Rainy Day///College Life///Baked Tomatoes///
Hallmark Movies///Rehab Homework///new playlist///
Acai Mango Tea///Quiet Time///Bible Reading///Journaling

Life is in the journey...the details matter...
God is in the details.

Friday, September 6, 2013

Worship Freely Tunes {18}

Oh my lanta guys!!!! Bethel's new album "Tides" came out two days ago and I love, love, looove it! You guys have to check it out if you haven't already. I really can't choose a favorite song but I did decide to share this one, simply because I can really relate to it right now in this season of my life. Enjoy! 

"Be Still"- Steffany Gretzinger

P.S  if you haven't already, hear this album on youtube 
or spotify and share what your favorite song or songs are.

It's Not A Religion, It's A Relationship

If there's one thing God cannot stand it's religion. God is God and His Son walked our walk and took our place so that we could freely enter His presence. Jesus did it so that we would no longer need any other intercessor but Him. He flung the gate wide open for those willing to approach. I just can't downgrade that at all. It was such a huge and hurtful price to pay but Jesus loved us. He hated the idols, and the unfaithful hearts were just too much for His heart to bear, and the sin was all too opposite of His holy nature but He loved us enough. Where sin resided His grace over abounded. He denied His own nature to come after us. Jesus with one glance could look past our mess and just see who our Father made us to be. Because He loved and continues to love us for us His message is so clear: Will we let His perfect love really transform us and break every wall? Trespass all obstacles we've set up? Will we dare let our Savior get close enough? You see it doesn't matter if you can't look at Him because He's looking right at you loving you at this moment knowing that when you let Him have His way in you you'll begin to love who He created you to be also. It's about setting aside who we think He is and just giving Him that chance to show us and reveal Himself to us, regardless of whether He comes the way we were expecting Him to or not. We've just got to let His Holy Spirit show up in our lives the way He desires to. 

As I read the Book of Amos a week back one thing really just stood out to me. God was addressing His people with pain that turned into anger because of the way they were living, because of the sin that was all too undeniable to ignore. One day they bowed down and worshipped other man-made gods and idols and the next day they were in the temple praising the living God in their fancy robes. God couldn't stand watching how they played both cards generation after generation and how they participated in such a masquerade. It was just a strong feeling of I love you so much, but why don't you truly love me back? If we pay close enough attention is this not happening today? I was this person at one point in my teenage years, showing up to church forcefully and putting on a pretty face only waiting for that last prayer in the afternoon to storm off and get back to what I called "reality". My idols weren't wood or painted plastic the way some are today but they had names: unfaithfulness, shame, and insecurity to say the least. Clapping my hands one morning and then singing anything but christian music the rest of the day. One day His love was just so big and so in my face, shining through that it woke me up to not just sort of live for Him but to live in the day to day to know His heart. If He was willing to inundate my life that night in such a powerful manner then I knew right then and there that I wanted this every single day of my life. 
God said to His people:
(Amos 5:21-23) 
“I hate, I despise your religious festivals; your assemblies are a stench to me. 
Even though you bring me burnt offerings and grain offerings, 
I will not accept them. Though you bring choice fellowship offerings, 
I will have no regard for them. Away with the noise of your songs! 
I will not listen to the music of your harps.

(Amos 6:5) 
You sing trivial songs to the sound of the harp and fancy 
yourselves to be great musicians like David. 


God wasn't saying that He didn't love music or fellowship but He was saying that He hated the fact that these things were being done out of religion, not because of true love for God, out of tradition and man-made regulation. Their lips were praising because they had to but there hearts were piled up sky high with idols. The music delighted the ear but the person playing the music, which is what God truly cared about, was so far from knowing God. Religion comes in all colors, sometimes it's so obvious and other times it's very neatly tucked away. The fact that God can just see right through us is why I think we feel the need to hide and why man-kind has always felt the need to hide. I think it's hard for us to fathom how holiness can look straight at us, touch us, and love on us. We don't need to hide anymore. This is to worship in truth. Let your heart be true so that He can begin to work. He loves you and I more than any song we could ever sing. In fact, he loves our music simply because we're the ones who are singing it. Without our hearts being in His hand it's just noise. You see, God offered us His Innocent Son so that through His amazing sacrifice we could have direct access to the Father once again. Since before time existed and we were in the heart of God He wanted to bring us into existence to be in relation with Him, to simply be with us and that was worship. To this day mankind has strayed. What causes us to hide from our creator, our Father, our friend? Sin. After sin crept in and we gave the enemy a foothold in our lives out came religion to invent rules so that we could earn enough merit to maybe have eternal life. maybe. Religion puts a price tag on us that Jesus already paid. God hates religion because it is only through His Son Jesus that we have access to Him. Access that isn't just offered after death, but every day of our lives. 

Religion in all it's splendor and glorious tradition didn't humble itself to die on a cross for us, it does not have life to give. Jesus bled until His very last breathe with you and I on His mind. The same eyes that saw our unformed body came to give us His body in exchange so that we could have the option to live forever by His side. Even after all that, He's not forcing us to be with Him...Jesus died to give us the choice.  Every day we have the opportunity to accept the grace of Jesus so that we can boldly approach the thrown of God. Job cried out for this when he was sick wishing and praying that if only there was someone who could plead his case before God for him. Jesus came to give us this. We don't need any other mediators (people, saints, idols). We just need Jesus. We just need His presence. I thank God that we've been given that option every day, to walk in His presence through the Holy Spirit. I thank God for such a love. I invite you to invite the Holy Spirit into your life, not just because you should or because He's just great company, but because your life will just never be the same after He invades every detail of it. I challenge you if you're a part of a worship team to think about this when you find yourself there leading, playing, or maybe in the crowd. Talk to God and let Him know that you desire Him to show up the way He wants to. As you drive He wants to talk to you just like a friend. When you're at work or at school He delights to be with you if you'll let Him. God wants to be with you and I. Beautiful, and honorable thought.

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