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Your Gift.

God gave us so many gifts to enjoy. We have all the natural phenomena, the miracle of child birth, the feeling of a perfect shoe, a peaceful Saturday morning and coffee. I mean, seriously, THANK YOU GOD!

All of those things are awesome gifts. I’m sure you have your pleasure list in which God has blessed you. Everyone is different so your list may be similar, but I’m sure it has variations as well.

To top my list is the gift of SONG. I’m not about to go on and on about how awesome I can sing. I know God has given me a voice to sing praises to Him and it doesn’t sound real bad to others. I admit it is one of my talents, but it is truly GOD GIVEN. It’s not me! It’s not one of those things I picked up one day off the street either. He gave it to me and HE has allowed me to develop it. I rejoice in it and I love that He sings through me to draw others to Him. It’s not me, it’s HIM! Amen! ((Can I get an amen!?!))

This morning while sweeping my garage, I started singing …

…this garage of mine has great acoustics! Yet another gift!

Maybe you are looking for a gift from God today? Look for it and I promise it’s there. Maybe it’s song? Maybe it’s something else? Whatever it is: treasure it, hold it, give thanks for it, share it, love it and know WHO provided it.

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I Will Always Be There.

In Lionel Richie’s song, he sings …

As long as I live, I’ll give you all the joy my heart and soul can give…

Because I’m truly …truly in love with you girl.

I love those lines.  Who doesn’t long to be loved like that?

I had a friend sing that to me back in the day.  Our love was platonic, of course, but I still knew she loved me big.  She loved me like we were closer than sisters.  She could sing too.  I loved to hear her sing.  This was my fave song she sang.

In another part of that song Lionel sings …

“I will always be there.”

This is taken out of context in this blog, of course.  Just thinking about that statement.  No one can really say they will ALWAYS be there for you.  They can say they will while they are here …or try their best when they can, but they can’t really promise to ALWAYS be there.  There is no telling what they may be going through themselves.  No one can be at the beck and call of someone else 24/7.  We all have lives to live.  Just like that friend of mine who sang that to me.  She died in a car accident many years ago.  I haven’t heard her sweet voice in almost twenty years!  That brings tears to my eyes typing it.  It just dawned on me that it has been that long!  Wow.

Well, she couldn’t always be there for me… but I’m so glad I have a friend who can.  A friend who perhaps doesn’t sing those words to me, but tells me in His word, through nature and other people that He loves me, that He knows me –and still loves me and will always be there.   I thank Jesus He tells me:

I will always be there.

We have to forgive.

Forgiveness is a hard word word for some. Forgive is a hard VERB.

I have had those moments where I thought, “I will NEVER forgive them for that.”  I have a mental gasp even typing those words!  But truly, I’ve been there.  I’ve been hurt so bad that I’ve thought those words, I’ve said those words….I’ve felt those words.

The relationships I’ve had that prompted those words were just like any other.  We all have them. It isn’t any different for me.  I have been upset with a parent, a brother, a friend…

No matter who it was, though, I know that I could never withhold something that is not kept from me.

How can I not forgive when I’ve been forgiven?

I take SOO MUCH comfort in knowing that I am forgiven.  This forgiveness is not something I had to beg or plead for either.  It was freely given to me thanks to Jesus.

How can I –EVER– not forgive?

The Bible is truth and here is what it says:

For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.  -Matthew 6:14

Even though forgiveness is HARD, we still have to do it.  We are supposed to read the Bible, meditate on it and then DO it.

We have to forgive.

 

Wanna Brag a Little?

WANNA BRAG???

God has united you with Christ Jesus. For our benefit God made him to be wisdom itself. Christ made us right with God; he made us pure and holy, and he freed us from sin. Therefore, as the Scriptures say,

“If you want to boast, boast only about the Lord.”

1 Corinthians 1:30-31

Our world is full to the brim with so many people who want to talk about themselves and point a light on what THEY are doing. You can see post after post where people are recording their good deeds.  I understand we do need to show or talk about GOOD stuff more often, because we are bombarded with the ugly, bad and worse when we watch world news.  But really, do we want to show others ourselves?  Do we want to shine a light on how awesome we are?  Do we want others to be able to brag on us?  I find that to be quite embarrassing when it happens.  Sure, I appreciate being appreciated, but I want people to know WHY I am able to do what I do.  It’s not because I’m continuously striving to impress others.  It’s not because I want people to look at me!  I’m not some “hero” or someone who wants to be put above others.  I’m just a person who wants to be used for good.  I want to shine a light on who should really get our attention.

I do not intend on bragging about myself.  Not ever.  I have talents and abilities only because God has gifted them to me.  He sends them through me so that I may bless others.  I thank Him so much for ALL!

So it’s not me.  It’s not the world around me.  It’s the one inside of me who is greater than anyone or anything in this world.

I WANNA BRAG A LITTLE… (or a lot).

When my light shines…

I want to show you WHO REALLY deserves all the credit: MY GOD! 

My God allows me to do what I do. I thank Him and give Him all the glory!!!

He has more.

Recently, I noticed this kid.

He used to be tangled up in this world.  He probably didn’t care a whole lot about others or himself for that matter.  He definitely wasn’t sold out on Jesus that anyone knew.  He was an ok student.  He wasn’t a trouble-maker.  He was just him.  He was a likable kid, but not an enormous stand-out of some sort.

Recently, I noticed a difference.

He smiles a ton more.  He was a stand-out in a sport this year that he was involved in.  I see his joy in our halls.  His face is different.  I don’t mean it’s transformed into someone else physically, but it is brighter, it’s happier, it’s warmer.  God has truly blessed him.

People are scared of Jesus.  They think that accepting his way will interfere with the way they want their lives to be.  We want to be in control way too much.  But if we could only really see what He does for people.  Like this kid I noticed recently.  I know Jesus is the reason for his transformation.   Jesus can change our appearance.  He can change our attitude toward people, toward our future and life in general.  He makes us prettier–spiritually AND physically.  He makes us love more.  It’s like He creates so much love in us that we have to share it with others.  Some of us believe we already have enough.  We do enough.  We are happy enough.  We have enough.   But there is more.  With Jesus, we can experience more of all that is good.

Recently, I noticed this kid… He has MORE!

 

THE ONLY IN-CROWD

Hipsters, Trend-setters, Preps, Jocks, Gossips, Rich, Poor…

So many labels for so many “IN-CROWDS.”

We are all aware of who belongs to the in-crowd is in just about every situation we face.  I’ve felt the awkward stares of “she is just different than us.”  I’d like to say that feeling ended in high school, but it didn’t.

It still happens today.  I feel it, but I’m so glad that I can now choose not to allow it to bother me.  Sure, I might for a second think about it, but it is A SECOND.  A millisecond even.  I know there are others who look at me and think or might even say out loud to their IN-CROWD (circle, clique, group) mean derogatory things about my personality, beliefs or appearance.  It’s really OK, because they don’t know me.

DO THEY KNOW ME?  Ha! Nope.  They don’t know who made me and probably don’t know who made them.  The latter is the saddest.  Who made me is the reason I am able to allow such “in-crowds” to fade into the world.  In-crowds of the world are formed so they can make each other feel good about their agenda.  They are created most of the time because misery loves company.

My IN-CROWD IS NOT ABOUT MISERY, I promise you that.  Actually my in-crowd is not really by definition an in-crowd.  A clique or in-crowd is defined as a group who spend time together and do not readily allow others to join them.

That is not what kind of in-crowd I’m a part of.  My in-crowd is far from exclusive.  We don’t push others away or build walls to keep those who want in out.  We welcome others.  We encourage others to get what we got!

We want others to have the benefits we have.  Our joy is not diminished by adding more to the group.  Our joy is actually multiplied each time another one joins!  How awesome is that!!!  It’s not like getting a smaller piece of the pie because there are more in attendance… it’s like the pie keeps getting bigger and bigger because MORE are coming!  YAY!  Who doesn’t want MORE pie!?!  haha!  Yes, a food analogy.  Who can’t relate to that though, right?  You like cake better?  Same analogy applies.  Lasagna?  Yep, more layered cheesey noodle and sauce goodness.

In this IN-CROWD, you get more freedom, more joy… and best of all–GRACE!  You wanna piece of that!?!  Well, come on!  With open arms I welcome you to the only IN-CROWD I ever really want to be a part of… SAVED!

 

 

Dumb things I do…

The short list.  

(There’s more, but let’s just name a few)

#1. Make up scenarios in my head that are so far from what ever really happens.

Anybody else have that super power? I’m a master! I make up stuff in my head about some situation AND THEN I’m crazy enough to believe it. I know I need not give any kind of example here. You’ve done it. You know what I’m talking about. 

#2. Doubt myself. I get all crazy thinking I can’t do something I’ve done a ton of times before. I mean, it’s a proven fact that I can do it, yet I talk myself into thinking I can’t. What the whhaaaaat? 

#3. Compare myself to others.  UG! This is the dumb-est. That is so dumb. I’m me, you’re you, we’re both awesome.  Duh. Why do I compare myself to anyone else!?!

#4. Paint my nails before I go to bed. Duuuuuumb.  I never wake up with nails that don’t look like a little elf came in and textured them over night with a little mini lawn mower or something.  I still do it tho. 

#5. Set my alarm, hear it go off and hit snooze three different times before getting up. OMYGEEEEEZ. Just get up, dagnabbit‼️. I don’t do this every morning, but enough to make the list. 

Anybody feeling like we are part of the same club? Well, thank you!

Just a little funny reflection.  

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