Monday, August 2, 2010

Last post...

I'm leaving this blog alone now (it's only been forever since I wrote anything on here anyways)...all bad history now - Praise God! I'llstill be posting at from here on out.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

It's been a long first half of the semester and it's taken me almost all that time to figure out what went wrong...and it's still coming, but the fog is finally starting to clear a little.

In all the busy-ness of life it's so easy to forget the "why". But the "why" is such a fundamental part in this crazy event known as life. I mean really. When it's all said and done...why does it matter. What does it matter...really. I get up, I do school, I go to dance I come home, I sleep. It's frustrating. I've been feeling as though I have been contruibuting nothing of value to society. I've been stressed and frustrated and more than I should be. Things are hectic, but not as bad as they feel. And I know it.

I've unintentionally dissconnected myself from God too. In all the hubub, my devotions (the time that's supposed to glorify God, strengthen our relationship, prepare me for the day and refresh me) have tunred into another part of my hectic routine. Heh...that doesn't cut it.

Anyways. This reallization has been the first step in getting back into the swing of things. I haven't been working as unto the Lord and I haven't been seeing these challenges as opportunities to serve and glorify God. I've been looking at them as hassles and impediments to what I want to do. I've been trying to plan too far ahead and not letting God open and close the right doors.

Prov 3:5 Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your paths

2cor 12:9And He said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness." Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in needs, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ's sake. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

Col 3:23 -24 And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance; for you serve the Lord Christ

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

A cool quote

"I will tell you this thing about myself to encourage you. My sole hope for heaven lies in the full atonement made upon Calvary’s cross for the ungodly. On that I firmly rely. I have not the shadow of a hope anywhere else. You are in the same condition as I am; for we neither of us have anything of our own worth as a ground of trust. Let us join hands and stand together at the foot of the cross, and trust our souls once for all to Him who shed His blood for the guilty. We will be saved by one and the same Saviour. If you perish trusting Him, I must perish too. What can I do more to prove my own confidence in the gospel which I set before you?" - Charles Spurgen

Monday, August 18, 2008

Ahh....I a SO out of the habit of writing, so I'm just going to write SOMETHING to help the juices to start flowing again....

I learned so much on my trip it's nuts, but if I write it all out one more time, I may lose my mind, so I'm not going to do that. It was amazing, and blessed and relaxing and just plain cool...and we'll leave it at that.

One thing I do want to explore spend some time on is the importance of Strength and Grace. That is one of the motos of the Royal Ballet company and God really impressed that on me while i was there. Those to two weeks were so hard and so grueling physically and emotionally. It really forced me to rely on the Lord for all my strength (including simply getting up in the morning).There were many days where my alarm would go off and I'd lay there telling myself; "No...I can't do it....I can't drag myself through 6 hours of dance today." But then I'd be reminded of a wonderful verse in Isaiah 52 that says "Awake, awake! Put on your strength o Zion, put on your beautiful garments o Jerusalem..." This passage was really talking about the restoration of Israel and how they no longer had to deal with ungodly nations invading their land. It's a little out of context, but it really helped.

"He gives power to the weak, And to those who have no might He increases strength." Isaiah 40:29

"And He said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness." Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me." 2 Corinthians 12:9

"I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me" Philippians 4:13

In addition to strength, He taught me about grace. It's important to be able to resist attack and be durable. It's important to be a vessel for His power...however, we're not meant to be bulls in China shops either. It's a competitive world out there and you have to be thick skinned, or else you'll give up. If the girls aren't awful (which they weren't...they were awesome actually), then the teachers are playing favorites and the so are the directors. You have to learn to just roll with the punches and always present yourself to the best of your ability. You have to be competitive. But you don't need to run people over to get to the front line and you don't have to put glass in some one's pointe's just not right. A wise director I work for always says "God is our promoter". And that's exactly right. We had to put ourselves out to be seen, but God makes those opportunities...we simply have to take advantage of them. You have to be gracious about it. Strength and Grace. An unlikely, but dynamic pair.

In looking up the word grace I found some synonyms that really explained to me what it meant to be gracious. They were words like, pleasant, precious, well favored, helpful, and merciful.

"A gracious woman retains honor, But ruthless men retain riches. The merciful man does good for his own soul, But he who is cruel troubles his own flesh." Proverbs 11:16-17

"Good understanding gains favor, But the way of the unfaithful is hard." Proverbs 13:15

"The words of a wise man's mouth are gracious,But the lips of a fool shall swallow him up" Ecclesiastes 10:12

Thursday, July 10, 2008

James 4

"Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded. Lament and mourn and weep! Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to gloom. Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up." James 4:7-10

I love this entire chapter in the book of fact, the entire book of James is absolutely amazing. James has just finished giving the church a rather harsh rebuke. He had just told them that they were an adulterous people and their actions were essentially those of unbelievers. Like most of us at one time or another, they'd really blown it. But like any good teacher would do, he gives them (and us) practical ways for ending this spiritual affair.

1 Draw near to God - This simple act of returning to Him is the first and action we must take. Spending time with Him in His word and prayer. It's not as hard as it may seem because there is promise attached to that command - "and He will draw near to you.". Like the father of the prodigal son, He runs to meet us with open arms.

2 Wash your hands - Now that the turning point has been made, it's time to remove the things that have defiled our lives. This isn't just the ceremonial, skin deep washing that makes us feel better (or at least not as bad). This is repentance. The physical act of turning from an action or the thing that is putting up an barrier between us and God. The thing that is making us impure. "Who may ascend into the hill of the Lord? Or who may stand in His holy place? He who has clean hands and a pure heart, Who has not lifted up his soul to an idol, Nor sworn deceitfully." Psalm 24:3-4

3 Purify you hearts - This is sort of like the washing your hands part...but more along the lines of the spiritual life. Having the behavior under control for the moment is all fine and good, but if the heart isn't right with God, it doesn't matter. "Blessed [are] the pure in heart, For they shall see God. " Matt 5:8

4 Grieve, mourn and wail - I heard someone say the other day that, regardless of the natural amount of emotion you are naturally prone to exhibit, if the sight of your sin before God hasn't broken you to tears and sorrow, you probably haven't actually repented. Now, I don't want to pass judgement on anyone, but I agree with this person. I've seen it in my own life. When the point finally came when I realized my sin and received just a small taste of what our sin does to our Lord, I was so filled with sorrow. It was beyond just being sorry. It was a repentant brokenness.

5 Change - turn your laughter to mourning and your joy to gloom. Repentance requires a change in both thought and action. By the grace of God, by the time we get to this point, we are not only willing, but are eager to change. We realize that nothing good dwells in us apart from Christ. If our desire is to glorify Him, then we must change.

6 Humble yourselves - Not a personal favorite of mine. It's so hard to get there, much less stay there, but when we do (even for a little while), it's the most amazing place in the world to be. To take our proper place before God. To bow before Him in total submission to His good and perfect will. There is only peace and rest in that place.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

What a mind blowing week. God is so cool. I don't know where to begin, so I'll just start. Okay. So, I've been having a hard time with bitterness lately. I think I let go, but I just take them right back and get all angry again. It's not been fun. I know it's sin, and I've been trying to lay it down, but finding that I'm only making marginal progress at best. One night last week I finally got alone with God and really sought Him about this bitterness. It's been putting a block up between me and Him that I could nearly physically feel, but couldn't seem to get passed. I was fed up.

Next day, I re-read an email I'd received from and very wise woman God put into my life through a bible study I'm doing. It hit me between the eyes and all the sudden it made sense. It's another attack. Satan found another weakness and decided to exploit it. I was distracted because I was busy on "re-building" the physical part of the temple I neglected to keep my guard in other areas. I should be about my Father's business, but I've been too caught up in my own frustrations to do that.

Once this all came crashing in there was such an initial release it was amazing. There's still plenty of work to be done, but at least the process has been started now. I am already beginning to see a difference in how I'm looking at those situations. Some of them are still pretty hurtful, but there's less anger.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Character of the New Man

Character of the New Man
Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering; bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do. But above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfection. And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which also you were called in one body; and be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him. Colossians 3:12-17

God has taught me so much through the book of Colossians lately. He lead me across this scripture after revealing to me that I still have some unfinished business with Him in some areas that I thought were pretty much under control. Bitter roots run deep and the only way to get rid of them is by calling on the mater gardener to pull them up and replace them.

As harsh as it may sound, bitterness, like anything else that goes against God's heart, is sin. It causes us to make our own judgments about people and situations. It doesn't allow God to be sovereign. Thankfully the Lord has been convicting me about this lately and has really been helping me. These verses in Colossians have really helped me and given me a practical guideline for actions to take against this root of bitterness. I really believe that He has much yet to teach me here and I'm looking forward to it and being free from this vice.