Friday, August 30, 2013

Worship Freely Tunes {17}

Hi y'all, just wanted to give you a little taste of my region and culture this week. Because I'm hispanic and born and raised in the Rio Grande Valley I thought I'd feature one of our very own. I really admire Eunice's music mainly because she's bi-lingual and her music is in english and spanish. This song is from her latest album Cielo y Tierra (Heaven And Earth) and in english it's called In Love With You. If you want you can check out her music and find this song in english on itunes. Enjoy and let me know what you think.

"Yo Te Amo"- Eunice Rodriguez

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

The Details


Rain, rain...my hair and clothes would like you to go away but you do my heart so much good. I love how God paints the sky, it's different every single time. Every morning, afternoon, and evening that I either drive to or from school I can't help but stare at what has lately been cloudy skies. Maybe it's my love for painting that causes my eyes to focus in on every color. Maybe. I'd like to think a little deeper than that though. Could it be that my spirit recognizes the artwork of my Father? I think that nature is a slice of God's beautiful heart. I couldn't help but feel so much more than good as I sat on a bench on the second floor of the Rehab building and watched rain trickle and then spontaneously pour down right in front of my eyes. It was like an unexpected crescendo of rain that made my heart and soul feel just right. When I witness little things like this I just feel God smiling and nudging me as if to say, "a few minutes ago that could have been you running frantically to take cover but I held it up just for you. Love you." Because God delights in the details of our lives I delight in His details. You can imagine how I was feeling as I was reading my Bible App before class on a cool day with the sound of rain tapping against old brick walls. If I could visualize a spiritual harmony that would be it for me right there. My favorite moment of the week so far. I love what I'm studying, I love it so much. At first I was like, God what on earth are you doing? But I see why He loves this and why He wanted me to love it too. I can't wait to put all the puzzle pieces together. The journey though is the best part. Gotta love it!

(Psalm 37:23) The Lord directs the steps of the godly.
    He delights in every detail of their lives.

Monday, August 26, 2013

Fall Semester

It's official. I'm a junior. Today was my first day back at UTPA and I'm honestly psyched to be back. The fall has to be my favorite semester because of the rain, the breezy days, and cloudy skies. If you were from the valley you'd be excited too, it's usually so hot over here y'all. I love my schedule: after going to my abnormal psychology class at 10:35 I don't have to go back to campus until 5 ish. This is the first time I take night courses so I should be coming home around 9. That's new, exiting, and kinda outside my comfort zone but...comfort zones are so overrated (I'm sure God would agree). So I went shopping a few days before and did that whole shabang and got some cute stuff, but my over all greatest achievement would have to be finishing The Old Testament in The Bible. Sunday night I was like, yes my Jesus I finally get to really read about you and I can finally know what's going on (lol). The details bring the big picture to life, you know? So this post is pretty laid back that's how I feel right now. Just wanted to share. Hope yalls first day was awesome!! God bless!






















Saturday, August 17, 2013

Painting My Bedroom: Before & After

A little paint can go a very long way. Color symbolizes so much more than just a form of expression, it alters moods and sets a certain atmosphere. It's incredible really. I remember taking my Psychology class, the first semester of my first year in college, and attentively leaning forward on the edge of my desk as I learned that prisoner's attitudes changed when their cells were painted a different color. They stopped fighting and the guards noticed they were more relaxed. Though my bedroom was no prison cell I took advantage of a some-what unexpected situation (the removal of my floor) and decided to paint my bedroom walls. It was time for a change so I took God's blessing in disguise for me and ran with it (actually drove) all the way to the paint store. Compared to the strong dark pink color I first had, this sea glass just brightens and softens up my room. I open the door and feel welcomed in almost. Change is good. Change brings maturity, new things, and lessons to be gained and shared. I can't help but welcome God's 180 spins for my life when I've witnessed in the past His faithfulness and goodness to come through with higher plans than I could have ever wrapped my head around.




Before...

///Oh my lanta what was I thinking? Ignore the balloons and flowers, basically I just wanted to show you guys the wall color. This picture is super old (two, three years tops) and I had definitely done some redecorating after then. The color represented the strong-willed, opinionated, and energetic side of me. Now that I pay closer attention, the color seems bold yet a little too cold. I tell ya, thank God for change! ///




























After...

///Ahhh...My eyes just go gaga. I love the beach and this color just makes me feel like I bottled up the sea and brought it home with me.///




///I love the combination of the white and light  blueish green colors. Later I want to incorporate some coral and rose accessories but for now I am enjoying my crisp, clean, serene space.///




///My bare-stripped floors literally resemble the sandy shore lol but I'm praying for some wooden floors before my birthday. It feels nice to breath in the freshness in here. Blessed.///


Friday, August 16, 2013

The Beginning Of True Worship: A Circumsized Heart


My Bible reading time is getting so good. I'm so close to The New Testament that I can taste it but the journey has been astonishing, slow paced but full of meditation. As I read through the books of Jeremiah and Ezekiel there was one similar focal point that I tuned into: God was telling these anointed men that what He most desired was the heart. The Lord went on to pour out prophecies about how He planned to recapture Israel's hearts, how He desired for His people to circumcise their hearts. God gave them so many literal examples and symbols for what true worship really was but they (with an exception of a few) never got it. The prophet Samuel understood this when he reprimanded King Saul for choosing sacrifices over obedience. David got it when he sang in one of his Psalms about how he finally realized that The Lord takes no pleasure in sacrifices and offerings, but instead, delights in a broken and contrite heart. For a while God used these literal expressions as a shadow of the true meaning of the beginnings of worship. Before anything else, God desires to have our hearts in His hand, because to give someone your heart is to give them all of you. Change came and God was behind this transformation, ready to reveal to all that what He was trying to do this whole time was win over their hearts. The few men that understood this did life with God: walked with Him daily, invited The Lord to be where they were, and followed The Lord wherever He wanted them to go. It's so easy to recognize a move of God when you spend intimate and public time with God. In your secret place as well as the grocery store, church, between classes, at work, and during lunch conversations. This is a picture of what doing life with God is and it all begins with a rendered, devoted, circumcised heart. You see, a circumcision removes the natural protective covering and what God was saying was this: for a while guys I asked you to circumcise your children because I was giving you a picture of what I really wanted and that was for that wall in your heart that you use to keep me out to be removed so that I could come in. God wants to come in to our hearts and dwell there. Worship first involves us giving our hearts over so that His Spirit may dwell there. When Jesus came He later gave the next revelation and that was this: guys, the temple was a symbol for a long time but now I've been sent by my Father to tell you that when I leave His Spirit will now not just be with you and in you...now He's gonna be upon you because your bodies are the temple of the Holy Spirit. The Lord tells us in The Book of Daniel that God is the revealer of mysteries and that He is.

*~*~*
(Ezekiel 11:19-20) I will give them an undivided heart and put a new spirit in them; I will remove from them their heart of stone and give them a heart of flesh. Then they will follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws. They will be my people, and I will be their God.
*~*~*

My favorite example so far in The Old Testament of what a circumcised heart looks like would have to be in the life story of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego when they're put on the spot and about to be thrown into a burning furnace because they refused to worship anybody/anything else but their God. I mean, I felt empowered as I was reading this.

*~*~*
(Daniel 3:17-18) "If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we serve is able to deliver us from it, and he will deliver us from Your Majesty’s hand. But even if he does not, we want you to know, Your Majesty, that we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set up. 
*~*~*

God loves and honors that heart that has let Him completely come in to the point of living a life that screams: My God is the living God and He can do anything for me but even if things don't work out the way I envision I will still love Him and keep my heart open to Him. God just can't resist this genuine heart because we were all created the same fierce and bold potential to love. This is the beginning of true worship that is born from doing life with God.

Worship Freely Tunes {16}

Identity. I love this song so much because it reminds me that God loves me. He loves who He created me to be and there's only one unique mold in the universe that He used to create me. May all our quirks be used for His glory. When we realize who He says we are we no longer have to imitate or depend on someone else's relationship with God to feel satisfied or close. Individually we have to seek Him and in that seeking we find our own flame. He made a special flame for each and every one of us to keep burning for.

"Find My Own Flame" -Will Reagan & United Pursuit

Thursday, August 15, 2013

What I've Been Up To: Past & Present

It's one of those days. Indecisive skies, one minute cloudy with signs of rain and the next too sunny to handle. That's the Valley for ya! Today was my last day of summer school so I bid farewell to Mexico's Contemporary Lit. and all of it's fascinating Novelas. I want to share a blog post that I planned on sharing weeks ago but I just couldn't find the right time or moment. It'll help make more sense of what I want to get at.

{Excerpt} ///The past two weeks have been interesting. Let's just say they involved one can of beach glass paint, a few trips to Lowes, long nights spent with my best friend in the world, my sister hiding in my closet on the only patch of carpet left, the living room turning into my bedroom, and me crashing on the couch with two pillows and my corral-colored blanket. It all started the week I got sick and after that my Dad made the decision to get rid of the carpet; However, while my family and I just let the idea roll off our backs my friend told my dad he'd take it out himself. He did. I love him so much. Lord knows him and I were expecting wooden floors after the drastic change but because of finances that project has been on hold. So here I am now lying down in my comfy bed tonight with bare wood left after being stripped of it's old carpet. I must say though that the view of the lights flashing outside my window and the stars slightly above are gorgeous. Really. It's been a long time since I've stopped and looked. Sometimes God leads us into peculiar situations, uncharted territory, only so that we can stop for a little while and enjoy the view. My nights spent on the couch had their reward too: midnight Bible readings by the lamp next to my momentary "bed" and getting to watch the moon through the half circle window above the front door. All these changes made me think of how one small, seemingly insignificant event, can become a catalyst for something big. I'm learning to love and appreciate the small, the lowly, the underestimated. God works wonders with these sorts of things. It reminds me of how much He would insist that Israel's armies be as small as possible. God is easier to see when the loud background is faded out. What I've been learning is that the good, the bad, the ugly, and the just plain weird are a way of God saying "I'm still here." Those small things that you can't seem to find joy in are going to cause something bigger to show up and the right door will open because God is faithful...He is full of faith. When God asks us to have faith in order to see Him He's asking us to place Him above all else as number one in our hearts, with single-hearted devotion.///

Joining past and present thoughts now. I drove up in my Dad's Dodge truck (borrowed momentarily) today after school and walked inside the kitchen to find a medium can of white paint waiting for me on the table. Let's just say that after the second day of painting my friend and I made a few slip ups (oops lol). We finished though, kinda, and that's what counts. Goodbye dark pink and hello beach glass! My floor still isn't set up but my parents decided to put my bed in anyways because I think they were starting to feel so bad about me sleeping on the couch. So I am now in my room, on my bed, sipping jugo de jamaica (jamaica juice), with a grateful heart. In a bit I'm probably going to watch Hallmark Movie Channel (because I love their sweet movies) or wedding shows on TLC while I paint, go for my night run, and then get in some Bible reading time that I'm craving so much of.

Friday, August 9, 2013

///Looking For People Going to The Bethel School of Worship in 2014///

Hey yall! So as most of you know God has placed in my heart to attend BSW next summer!!! Yay!!! I'm so oober excited! God has been providing me with connections (Gotta love my Daddy for opening the right doors). The reason why I wrote this post was to hopefully find some people out there with the same vision and plan and just get connected. I'm from McAllen Texas so I was hoping to find others leaving from Texas to Redding so that we could meet up and maybe travel together. So...if that's you and you just happened to stumble upon my blog and you plan on attending BSW in 2014 then leave a comment or just e-mail me with the deats. on the contact me tab. I'd love to hear from you and definitely to get to know you and what God wants to equip you for. This journey is going to require so much work on my part but I know God is able and in control. Do I have the funds? Not all of them. Am I a little worried? No. I am expectant though. I know that His plan requires His hand so all things will come together. I just know it. How can you help? Pray for me and this journey. Your heartfelt prayers mean the world to me guys, keep em' coming. 


-Deya




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