God’s Faithfulness!!

Great is Thy Faithfulness”

Great is Thy faithfulness, O God my Father;
There is no shadow of turning with Thee;
Thou changest not, Thy compassions, they fail not;
As Thou hast been, Thou forever will be.

[Refrain]
Great is Thy faithfulness!
Great is Thy faithfulness!
Morning by morning new mercies I see.
All I have needed Thy hand hath provided;
Great is Thy faithfulness, Lord, unto me!

Summer and winter and springtime and harvest,
Sun, moon and stars in their courses above
Join with all nature in manifold witness
To Thy great faithfulness, mercy and love.

[Refrain]

Pardon for sin and a peace that endureth
Thine own dear presence to cheer and to guide;
Strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow,
Blessings all mine, with ten thousand beside!

 

How often do you take the  time to look back on your life and thank God for his amazing faithfulness in your life? This past weekend I was in VA visiting some very good friends of mine and we were discussing life and what God has done for us in the past and how those past experiences have prepared us for the trials we are facing today.

In the beginning of this year I went through one of the hardest trials in my life thus far and I struggled very hard to see God’s love at work in my life, but from previous experience I knew that He is good and He is always at work in my life for my good and for His glory.

The lyrics that are written above are thanking God for His faithfulness in  the midst of every season of life, whether it was a time of want or a time of plenty God wants us to thank and praise Him. But how in the midst of a trial when we are already struggling to breathe do we sing a song of praise? We remember that God is faithful. Always. And that He promised we would never walk alone. Always remember he is there with you in the middle of the storm.

So go out this week, Praise Him because He is good, and because He loves you always. And most of all for His Faithfulness!!

Until Next Time

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Grace, God’s Grace

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No, I don’t have it all together and I probably never will on this earth, but with God’s help I can power through whatever life throws my way. Especially because there are two things I am sure of

1)God will never send me a trial that with His help I can’t have victory
2) He promised to never leave me or forsake me. He is always here ready to enable me.

I have also experienced the power of God in my life. The many times that I have called and pleaded for his help he has come through in some amazing ways.

I’m going to be a bit vulnerable in this post so please bear with me. Growing up I had many insecurities and as a protection for myself I had built many many walls, in an effort to protect myself and to control the circumstances around me. Because as long as I didn’t allow people to get close and care about me they could never hurt me. And that even included God, because he was Authority and he required respect that I did not feel he was worthy of.

It wasn’t until by the grace of God that I realized that God has a plan and a purpose for each one of our lives and that he placed me in the situations that he did for a reason. And that is simply to bring him honor and Glory through my life, I had to choose to follow him no matter the path that he chose to take me down. Because ultimately he has my best in mind.

It was not until I realized that these trials are because he loves me and he wants to refine me and make me a better person to serve him. Because it is through those trials and hard times that  we realize who we really are in our carnal selves . And that we are not  truly complete without Jesus in our lives. He knew the path that I had to go down in order to bring me to him and Draw Me Closer to his side, because without some of those trials that I went through I don’t know where I would be today.

Zechariah 13:9 KJV
And I will bring the third part through the fire, and will refine them as silver is refined, and will try them as gold is tried: they shall call on my name, and I will hear them: I will say, It is my people: and they shall say, The Lord is my God.

Yes, I can now honestly say that I am so grateful for all the things that I have experienced on this Earth. There have been times of heavy trials , many tears, and heartache. But you know one thing that has been a steady constant even when I chose not to obey him, is my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. He has been there every step of the way. Showing me a little ways that he loves me and that he would always take care of me no matter what. And all that time is drawing me a little closer to himself.

When I totally surrendered my life to him that is when he started to break down those walls. And teach me to love as he loves. Yes, we will get hurt in this life people will take advantage of our kindness , generosity, and love. But God calls us to love them anyways just as his son loved us enough to die on the cross so that we could have an abundant life in him. No, loving isn’t always easy sometimes we feel that the person absolutely does not deserve it. And no, sometimes they don’t deserve it neither do we deserve what Jesus did for us on the cross.

Romans 5:8 tells us
But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

It doesn’t say that while we were perfect he died for us. It says when we were yet sinners, when we were at our weakest moment needing him the most. It was when I was the most unlovable that he gave his life so that I could live a full life in him.

As it took time and years to build those walls, it also takes time and years to break them down. It is a work in progress but I am grateful to say that it is so encouraging to look back and see that I am not the same woman I was 2 years ago. Not On My Own Strength but it is because of the grace of God that I am who I am.

1 Corinthians 15:10 KJV
But by the grace of God I am what I am: and his grace which was bestowed upon me was not in vain; but I laboured more abundantly than they all: yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me.

Please understand that I am definitely not completely there ,to the place that I am able to love with abandon, or even to completely surrender every area of my life all the time. But God is working in my life and I’m a work in progress. I just wanted to share a bit of my story that maybe someone can glean a bit of Hope for their own story.

May God Bless you as you make the journey of life through His grace and strength. Because it is only through Him we can be truly whole. Until Next Time ~ Rose Mary

Lessons from Pain

God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks to us in our conscience, but shouts in our pain: it is his megaphone to rouse a deaf world. -C.S. Lewis

The past month or so I have been on this journey. A journey of the Lord showing me that suffering and pain have their purpose in life. Generally, when we think of suffering and pain, we want to run the opposite direction. But the Lord has been showing me there are so many things He desires for me to learn in those moments.

Some of those things are:

See that last point, the one where He will do a work in my heart? In the past month, the Lord has allowed me to walk through some deep pain. It was some pain that I had to work through from my past. I wasn’t sure what to do with it because for such a long time, I didn’t allow people to hurt me. Or, a better way of saying it is, I just stuffed the pain somewhere deep inside and told myself I wouldn’t feel it. 


You see, earlier this year the Lord showed me that by stuffing my pain, I also was missing out on feeling the depths of the joy and happiness He desires for me to feel. He showed me how it was getting in the way of my drawing closer to Him and He wanted me to see the harm it was doing in my life. I asked the Lord to help me deal with the things that I hadn’t allowed myself to feel. I had no idea where that would lead.Fast forward to this past month. God allowed some painful memories to crop up from my past. My initial reaction to it was, I am not going to feel this or think about this. I am so thankful that the Lord didn’t allow me to stay there. He reminded me of what I had asked Him to do earlier. I told Him that I don’t know what to do with the pain. He gently showed me that I needed to forgive the source of the pain and that I needed to feel the pain. There were no shortcuts nor was it easy but I can tell you, IT IS WORTH IT!!

I saw through this time that you can try to stuff the pain down deep, ignore the pain, and even numb it but it WON’T go away. It will stay there, waiting for you to deal with it and feel it. And you know, yes, it hurt a lot to feel the pain and it definitely wasn’t easy. But the Lord was WITH me the entire time (even though I will say I had to grapple with Him for allowing it in the first place). He also showed me that by allowing Him to work through the pain, it is ultimately for my good and HIS glory. He was using the pain to show me areas in my life that I needed to surrender to Him. He wants my whole heart, even the part that was/is hurting. He wants to heal and redeem that part of me and then use what I have gone through to bring honor to Him.

So my challenge to you is this. When the Lord brings you to a place of pain or allows suffering or hardship, allow Him to do the work in you that He wants to do. Don’t fight it because that only prolongs the healing and redemption! It may not be easy and it most likely will be painful, but the reward in the end is a closer walk with Him and a heart that is more free to feel joy and happiness. 

Blessings, Ruth Ann Sommers (Guest Blogger)  www.justabitofinspiration.blogspot.com

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There is Life in the Freedom of Christ.

Freedom is a word that can be shifted into not meaning the actual definition. For instance the definition of freedom means the right to act, speak, or think as one wants without hindrance. But we all know that is far from true. No one can say or do something these days without getting offended or misunderstanding one thing to the next.

So is freedom really free?

And.. if freedom is actually obtainable how do I get a hold of that?

Well as far as living in a flawed world where people are self-seeking?miserable, rasist and easily offended it is going to be impossible to live in freedom with the world as an audience. Because people pleasing does not bring freedom. Carrying burdens does not bring freedom. It just adds stress, causes anxiety and breaks hearts.

There is one name. One king. I know for a fact that brings Peace and True Freedom.

That name is Jesus Christ! 

I get to live in freedom not because I do it for people as an audience. But because I know the love of the Father and I love and live for an audience of One. And because of that I am FREE from the thoughts and hurts of the world it doesn’t stick to me because of Jesus that lives in me, it changes everything.

17 Now the Lord is the Spirit and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is Freedom. 2 Corinthians 3:17

I am so confident in that because I’ve been living in it for the past 2 years. People are only familiar with there own experiences and comfort. It takes faith, I thought just because I had a relationship with God, it was automatically freedom, but it couldn’t be that way because there were things I held on to that I did not want to surrender to God. And because i refused, the barrier restricted me from obtaining the freedom God had for me. It was a long journey and not until I fully released my eating disorder and my addiction to destroying the inside of my body did I fully experience that freedom. Emotional weight has been removed and now I live in the fullness of what God has in store for my life. But it isn’t just me. It is everyone. Everyone has the ability to experience this Freedom and Love that cannot be found anywhere else. There is never a better time then NOW.

Galatians 5:13 You were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge in flesh, rather, serve one another humbly in love.

And because of this free gift from Christ allowing us to live freely for him. When you fully accept that and own that as your identity you will be used greatly to do the will of God and expand the His kingdom. Because at this point the fear of man such as thoughts and snarky comments mean nothing because you have your identity and you no longer need to find it in worthless things!

Romans 8:1-3 Life through the Spirit:

Therefore, there is now NO condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, becsuse through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set YOU FREE from the law of sin and death. For what the law was powerless to do because it was weakened by the flesh, God did by sending his own son in the likeness of sinful flesh to be a sin offering

I am no longer a slave to the desires of my flesh, I am no longer a slave to the ways of this world. It is a struggle because I am surrounded by it. I am submerged in it. I constantly have to renew my thoughts my actions to reflect Christ. But it is so completely worth it. Because Jesus is everything. Honestly., without him you and I would not be here. We would have no life and nothing to live for. Right now some people don’t know what they are living for.

What are you living for?

Where do you want to spend eternity?

There is freedom from a loving father- a gift waiting for you to take a hold of it. There is no shame. He wants us to come to him and he will help clean up your life. Without him nothing is possible. And with him anything is possible! Don’t allow fear to rule your life. 

God desires for us to come to him just as we are to take a part in this freedom that he has given to us! I love you all so much. Thank you for reading! Please leave any comments or questions as well as prayer requests.

 

 

Fulfilling God’s purpose for your life

We all know God has a special purpose for each of our lives, but do we know what that is? I think it’s safe to say we all struggle with worrying about our future and how God will use us in this world. I know for a lot of people my age, it is so difficult to be patient and allow God to show us where we should be, when we should be moving, and when we just need to wait. The thing we need to remember is to take it one step at a time. Waiting for God to show you the next thing is one of those steps. While you’re in the period of waiting, you should continue to prepare yourself for what is yet to come. Continue to grow in your relationship with God. When you are ready, he will take you where you need to go, open doors you never even knew were there. I am experiencing just how much God can show you if you’ll just be patient and listen! It is also really fun to see where he is sending others, and how God can use YOU to support them on their journey.

I was at Creation Festival last week for the first time. It was such a cool experience to be surrounded by thousands of people who share faith in Jesus. The positivity of all the sayings on T-shirts, the smiles of strangers as they walked past each other, the passion that radiated through the crowds, it all gave me such hope for the future. I know that as each of those people went back to their lives, they had so many stories to tell whether it was encounters with new friends, words they heard from the guest speakers, or even just hearing lyrics to songs they already know, live. The experience was powerful to many.

I met a lot of people during my time at creation. It doesn’t take long for others to realize I am a people person. I love connecting with new people and just sharing friendly conversation. I think it is so cool to meet people my age who share my beliefs. It is easy to support each other since a lot of us are in a similar place in our lives, trying to find our purpose. Lately I’ve been meeting so many young adults with such a passion for Jesus and for others, and it’s been so uplifting with such a positive influence on my outlook of the world. However, I met one special person last weekend who is much younger. A 10-year-old boy named Devon.

My friends and I were sitting on a blanket watching Skillet play on Saturday night. Despite the high energy from the “mosh” crowd up front, we decided to go sit down for a bit because we were so exhausted from camping. Just a few minutes after we sat down, this little boy wearing light up shoes, glow sticks, and lights attached to his entire outfit approached us. “Free pictures with me if you want!!” he yelled. It was adorable! My cousin, her friend, and I looked at each other with huge smiles and said, “Yes!! We would love a picture with you!” My friend took the picture, then we each hugged the little boy, thanked him, and told him how cool we thought he was. Then, without any hesitation, he proceeds to tell us he has autism, starts listing all these facts about it, and how he’s not really all that different from everyone else. He tells us he’s been through a lot with teasing and bullying in school. He said, “I just want everyone to know about autism and understand it! I don’t want anyone else to have to go through what I went through, so I’m telling everyone!” In that moment I realized what a gift this little boy is. This 10-year-old is willing to put himself out there using his own experiences that have made him stronger, to help those who cannot stand up for themselves. Many children his age are too shy to share what they believe or to turn their rough experiences into a way of helping others. Plenty of adults even struggle with this!

After a few minutes of speaking with him, his mother approached us to check on him. Hearing from his mother and him for just a short few minutes really showed how strong this boy is. It reminded me how God takes the weakest people and makes them strong. Just by knowing God, this small, seemingly weak boy has all the strength in the world and uses it to help others who are weak! How inspiring is that?

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 10 That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.  -2 Corinthians 12:9-10

It is pretty clear to me what God’s purpose for this boy is. I hope to one day see him as an inspirational speaker, spreading his love, God’s love, and autism awareness to future Creation Festival crowds.

14 “You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden.15 Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. 16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.   -Matthew 5:14-16

So whether or not God has shown you your next step yet, keep spreading his love wherever you are now. You never know how, where, or when God will open a new door for you. He will take you where you need to go. Just be patient, pray, and trust in him!

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.   -Philippians 4:6-7

Be strong, stay positive, love unconditionally~Mady

What have I to Fear?

Fear…. Something I have been thinking a lot about lately and even heard a message preached on the topic this morning. We all have things in life that we are afraid of, whether it be of heights, driving, spiders…etc. What do we do with these fears? Some of us may cower in the corner and vow to never ever get near that edge, or we face our fears (I am talking irrational fears at this point).

At the beginning of this year I decided that this would be the year I face some of my fears. And I have done a few of them so far and you know they weren’t nearly as scary as I first assumed they would be.

This got me to thinking about some of the things I fear in my spiritual life. I have always feared that God would call me to a far away country to serve him, But I am very happy and comfortable serving him right where I am (or so I thought). But if God wants you to do something I believe he will give you circumstances in your life that will help you see His hand in all of those things. Because even though he may call me to another country across the pond I also have learned through a string of experiences that he will walk with me every step of the way and even though it might be out of my comfort zone, I will never be out of his reach.

The message I heard this morning was given by a missionary from Canada and he travels the globe working with an organization called Open Hands. They help people to learn how to make money, then save it, and eventually give back to their community, And all this and Open Hands does not give them a cent. “Give a man a fish, feed him for a day, teach a man how to fish, feed him for a lifetime” is their motto.

Anyways he preached a message based on Numbers 13 where Moses sent 12 men to spy out the land of Canaan “The Promised Land” they went in and saw all there was to see and came back to the children of Israel with a report. The also brought back some grapes, figs, and pomegranates. They looked at the food and the fact that the land was flowing with milk and honey and everything good that had been promised. BUT then they told them “we saw giants HUGE men that are way stronger than we and we would never be able to overcome them”.

Do you see the fear? They looked at the grapes and the food that they got out. God had promised to them that the land would be flowing with milk and honey. But they forgot all of God’s other promises when they saw all the giants in the land. They forgot that the God that they served was able to part the red sea, pour food from the sky, make water come from a rock, and all the other provisions he had given them in the course of time that they had been in the wilderness.

You know so many times we look at the children of Israel and roll our eyes at how they just never seemed to get their act together and they constantly bickered, complained, and got mad at God. But how many times do I do the same thing? I get frustrated because God isn’t making things turn out the way I think that they should. But you know God never promised us in His word that he would make things go according to Rose Mary’s will or that whatever you want I will give thee. And you know I am so glad he doesn’t work that way because do I really know what I want?

I am so thankful that I have a Heavenly Father who ultimately knows what is best for me. When serving God we know two things, God will always do things for my good, and for His GLORY. So what do we have to fear? We have an almighty God who has our best in mind, and if he calls us to something he will walk the path with us. And there are 365 verses about not fearing in the Bible that is one a day! So go walk with God in the confidence that if He brings you to it He will walk with you every step of the way!!
Until Next Time~Rose Mary