Wednesday, February 25, 2009
Sunday, February 22, 2009
Saturday, February 21, 2009
I praise God, my Father, for His Word! I praise Him for His promise to complete the work He has started in me.
Thursday, February 19, 2009
Tuesday, February 17, 2009
Enjoy the clip!
Sunday, February 15, 2009
Friday, February 13, 2009
Wednesday, February 11, 2009
- Joy - people who are a joy for us to love (Phil. 4:1)
- Testy - people who really test us and we struggle to love (Phil. 4:2)
- Foe - people who we don't love at all, but actually hate, Beth says, "you hate with all your being"
- Far - people who are strangers (Mt. 25:34-40)
We were instructed to picture faces for each category of people. Beth told us to really search our hearts and be brutally honest about this. I found myself thinking of more "joy" people than anything, which made me feel really good. There are a few "testies", but for the most part, I think that I am testy! Foe - I really can't think of any (at least not any new ones - I've forgiven several people in my day). However, I did recall how recently I considered God my foe. Scary, huh? After the death of my mom and grandmother, I was so angry with God that I must have considered Him my foe. I shared this with the ladies at the retreat. I told them how God allowed me to stomp my feet, shake my fists, scream and cry and yell - you know, pitch a major fit. All the time I was doing that and telling God how mad I was at Him for taking my mother - He still loved me. That blows my mind! When I recall how ugly I was, how ungrateful and selfish I was, yet God never stopped loving me! It truly is amazing, people!
Beth also pointed out in her message that just as I am a woman and nothing could ever change that, God IS LOVE. He can't help but love us because HE IS LOVE. It's His nature. Awesome! There were several 'sound bites' I call them that Beth said that really struck a chord with me:
- God measures maturity by how we love.
- We need to ask God to minster to us before we can minister to others.
- God won't do through us what we don't let Him do to us.
- We won't love well until we feel well loved.
- Let's start loving because we are already loved, not so we will be loved. (I John 4:19)
And finally the strangers in our lives. Beth shared how we need to "stop, pause and minister" to the strangers we meet. Isaiah 58:6-12 says that when we reach out to those who are in need, then we will find healing. Isn't it amazing how God shows us that when we give of ourselves WE receive even more? Isn't that crazy? The world would have us believe that we have to take, take, take in order to be happy. But God says that we won't be happy and fulfilled until we learn to give and to love.
I have to admit that my brain can't comprehend the magnitude of this message. I'm not sure I'll completely understand it all this side of heaven, you know? There are so many days that I don't feel lovable or loving, and seperating feelings from fact doesn't come easily to me. It's the battle of the mind taking place on a regular basis.
Well, there's my love message (from Beth) - or I should say GOD's love message. Timely in that this weekend is Valentine's Day, don't you think? ;0 )
Saturday, February 7, 2009
Wednesday, February 4, 2009
Well, it seems lately that all I hear is bad news and more bad news. When this happens I tend to go into shut-down mode after a point. It's like my mind just can't take in any more sadness or wickedness, you know? How do you respond when this happens? Some people rise above it all. Others, like myself, withdraw and take a breather from life; I think I'm about there once again. This means that I won't be "taking in" the e-mails I receive (I'll just quickly scan them) or going online to check the headlines, or watching the news. At least for a while. Of course this makes me feel selfish. I really wish I was one of the those who can rise above it all.
On a different note, I think I'm almost to the point of actually saving money with the coupons I've collected. Yes, I have decided to be "one of those" people who go (or is it "who goes"?) into the stores with a handful of coupons and walk (or is it "walks"? my mind isn't working tonight) out of the place with $100 bucks worth of stuff having paid only $15 for it all. I have a friend who is a pro at this. Holly devotes her blog to the bargains she obtains. She is my inspiration. ;0)