GO TO THE LAND I WILL SHOW YOU

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Standing on  the step-ladder with wallpaper stretched above my head the Lord spoke clearly. “You’re going to sell this house.”

Stopping in the middle of my project, with gooey wall paper suspended above my head, I simply replied, “Okay.” That was the beginning of a journey that would prove to be exhilarating, fearful, suspense filled, and frustrating as well as an adventure I would not want to do again.

“The Lord had said to Abram, “Go from your country, your people and your father’s household to the land I will show you.” Gen. 12:1

Looking back at my experience I feel like I might be able to relate to Abraham. At least be able to empathize with him. Maybe he had the same feelings as I did. Maybe not. But to suddenly be told I’m going to leave my long time home, my comfort zone, my church family and friends, to go where the Lord leads me, without knowing where exactly that is, can be quite scary and exciting.

Abraham did go. “By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go…And he went out, not knowing  where he was going.” Heb. 11:8

Boy can I relate to that! He packed up his tent and his belongs and followed where the Lord led him. How can someone do that!? How could I step down off that step-ladder and say, “Okay Lord. Where we going?” only to hear, “You’ll see.”  Abraham packed up everything he owned to follow wherever the Lord led him. I don’t know if his friends said, “Are you nuts!?” A couple of mine did. But Abraham trusted God to lead him, supply what he needed on the road, and take care of him when he got there. He followed the Lord because of his faith in the Almighty.

“And he believed in the Lord, and He accounted it to him for righteousness.” Gen. 15:6

Now don’t get me wrong here, I am no Abraham! I don’t even come close to this giant of a man in scriptures.  I never was told to stand over my child with a huge knife raised high in the air to be thrust through an innocent heart (Gen 22:1-19) images[5]and praise be to God I didn’t have to walk whatever distance to the destination where I would settle until the Lord said, “Start packing” again.

imagesCA2O5GUC  But I did the same thing! I packed up my belongings not knowing where I was being sent or what I was going to do when I got there or why the Lord was sending me there. I was trusting God through faith. Okay, I confess, I had some fears mixed with bouts of excitement. The “what if’s,” the, “am I hearing right?” the “but what about…?” came and on occasion I told the Lord I thought He might have some mental problems that needs to be looked into. But I went!

I don’t know if Abraham’s faith was stretched to the breaking point or not. I doubt that it was, being who Abraham was, but mine sure was. The long days on the road, the  constant questioning of the Lord, the tiny town situated out in the middle of a vast desert.

Isn’t there some scriptures that talk about growing in the Lord in the desert?

Oh, it wasn’t the deserts of Arizona, where the high temperatures sear your lungs. To me that would have been a blessing. At least they had cactus. The Lord knows I hate being cold! The Lord knows I have never lived in cold country, where when the temperature rose above 0 I thought it was a heat wave. The Lord knows I’ve never used a snow blower or have ever even seen one. The Lord knew He had to extradite me out of my comfort zone to be able to teach me to really trust Him and to expel the stubborn self-sufficient and independent attitude I had.

Boy did He place me in the right place! I knew not another soul, I do not like living in tiny towns with the gossip flying about like flies at a picnic. I like having doctors, hospitals, and medical help near by, and I like grocery stores that offer a wide variety of products. I especially like warm weather where I can wear shorts and light tops, not climates that require  three layers of warm clothes that still leave me shivering from head to foot. In other words, I like having my church family close by to encourage me, I like having friends stop by for a chat, and I admit I’m a warm weather loving urbanite! Georgia suits me just fine, thank you very much.

The eighteen months of continually crying, questioning, and having temper tantrums that would make a three year old look like an angel was taking its toll. Slowly His lessons were getting through and my trust was building, my independence was flying out the window, and when He finally said “Start packing” He didn’t have to tell me twice.

When I left that town the Lord had armed me with new confidence. Confidence in Him. He showed me (boy howdy did He ever!) that I am not the self-sufficient independent woman I thought I was. He showed me that I am absolutely nothing without Him. When I left that town I had far less questions, fewer doubts, and as I headed to the next “land I will show you” I did it with a deep-seeded confidence that whatever the Lord God calls me to do He is with me every step of the way, regardless of whether it’s a desert or the mountain top.

My advice to those of you who are ever so comfortable in your walk with our Lord, don’t let that arrogant spirit fool you.

You may end up in Wyoming!

~~~~~

“The pride of man will be humbled

And the loftiness of men will be abased;

And the LORD alone will be exalted in that day…,”

Is. 2:17

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All proceeds support Elah Mininistries, Inc

. Published 2008  Published 2009

Blessings to you.

 

 

 

 


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I Surrender All. Really?

Many times we sing songs such as “I Surrender All” but do we really? Are our hearts really open to allow the Lord our God to have His way in us? When He asks us to do the hard things do we do them without question, complaint, or understanding why? What percentage of our heart do we hold back, or do we?

 

“He answered, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.'”

Luke 10:27

 

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Blessings to you.

To … From Jesus

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How are you? I just had to send you this letter to tell you how much I love you and care about you. I saw you yesterday as you were walking with your friends. I waited all day, hoping you would walk and talk with me also. As evening drew near, I gave you a sunset to close your day, and a cool breeze to rest you. Then I waited, but you never came. Oh yes, it hurt me, but I still love you because I am your friend.

I saw you fall asleep last night, and I longed to touch your brow, so I spilled moonlight upon your pillow and your face… Again I waited, wanting to rush down so we could talk, I have so many gifts for you.

You awakened late this morning and rushed off for the day. My tears were in the rain. Today you looked so sad, so alone. It makes my heart ache because I understand. My friends let me down and hurt me many times, but I love you. I try to tell you in the quiet green grass. I whisper it in the leaves and trees, and breathe it in the color of the flowers. I shout it to you in the mountain streams, and gave the birds love songs to sing. I clothe you with warm sunshine and perfume the air. My love for you is deeper than the oceans and the biggest want or need you could ever have.

We will spend eternity together in heaven, I know how hard it is on earth. I really know, because I was there, and I want to help you. My Father wants to help you, too. He’s that way, you know. Just call me, ask me, talk to me. It is your decision…

Because I love you.

                                                                             Your friend,

                                                                                            Jesus

 

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Blessings to you.

 

Reprinted by permission and with appreciation to Harry D. Cup, WDBO Radio, Orlando, Florida

Do we dare get mad at God?

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Sitting at the head of the long table with women gathered around, I hear anger being voiced. I hear cries that are fearful of shaking their fist at the God who created them. “But we can’t get angry at God!” one woman exclaims.  “Why not?” I softly ask.

God created us with all sorts of emotions and anger is one of those emotions. We get angry about a lot of things and we express it in many different ways. There is righteous anger and there is unrighteous anger.  In Dr. Harold Bloomfield and Robert Kory book, “Inner Joy” they list four types of non-constructive anger. I call it “self righteous” anger.

Some of us “stuff it” inside and do a slow sizzle. It’s called passive anger. We may try to make others feel guilty in the process. Hubby wants to go play golf. The wife wanted to do something together.  “Ohhh, you go ahead, I’ll just sit here all alone.”  The person doesn’t admit to even being angry like they are some saint and nothing bothers them yet they sit and burn a slow burn on the inside.

Some of us scream, yell, call names, stomp, hit the wall or others, throw things. That’s aggressive anger. This is the type of anger that can land people in prison. It is the anger that causes emotional damage that can take years to overcome. It is the type of anger that sends wives and children crying and bruised to their bedrooms to hide.

Hinting, placating, and avoiding responsibility is a type of anger where we express our anger indirectly. Instead of going to the person we are angry at we go behind their back to someone else. This type of anger is common in divorces.  Sadly, the children are usually the one that suffer because they’ve been used as the pawns for this type of anger. Or we go to a friend and drag him/her into the fight.

Overspending, lateness, “accidently” burning the dinner, are a few examples of the passive-aggressive anger. This person appears to be passive but in fact is aggressive. The anger is expressed in hidden ways and almost always causes hurt and humiliation. It’s a “I’ll show you” type of anger.

Righteous anger is when we get angry about a wrong being done. We see a child being beaten and step in, we hear gossip being spread about someone and know it’s wrong and a pack of lies.

But what about if we get angry at God? Can we get angry at God? Of course we can! There are several examples in the Bible where followers of Christ got angry. “Why do you treat your servant so badly?…Why are you so displeased with me that you burden me with all these people? Was it I who conceived all this people?…” (Numbers 11:11-12) Moses cried out to God.

Martha wasn’t a happy camper when Jesus waited four days to show up when Lazarus died and she let Him know. “If you had been here, my brother would never have died.” (John 11:21)

Even Jesus got angry! “You snakes! You brood of vipers! How will you escape being condemned to hell?” (Matt.23:33)

Yes, we can and do get angry with God. Whether we admit it or not. He’s a big enough God to handle our anger. I have stated many times to the Lord, “I am really mad at you right now so I better shut up before I say something I will regret.” If we have a relationship with Christ we can be open and honest. He knows even before we do that we are angry. He understands it, accepts, and will help us through it if we turn that anger to prayer.

Instead of letting our anger simmer and turn to depression, anxiety, or even become a bitter root we can turn it over to God. If we lay it before Him in honesty it rids us of deep inner turmoil. When we voice our pain to Him He is faithful to take it upon His shoulders with love and compassion. He can use your anger, rage, outrage to build your faith and move you in directions you never dreamed possible.

~~~~~

“Be angry, and do not sin”‘, ‘”do not let the sun go down on your wrath, nor give place to the devil.” Eph. 4:25-26

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Blessings to you.