Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Don't stop there

"When an unclean spirit goes out of a man, he goes through dry places, seeking rest, and finds none. Then he says, 'I will return to the house from which I came.' And when he comes, he finds it empty, swept , and put in order.Then he goes and takes with him seven other spirits more wicked than himself, and they enter an dwell there; and the last state of that man is worse than the first. So shall it be with this wicked generation." Matthew 12: 43-45

The first problem in the story is the word "empty". I could be totally off on this, but it seems to me that even though the demon left, the man in the story was not sanctified. It's all fine and good that we escape our demons and set the "house" of our souls in order, but if you don't fill it...something else will. As God delivers us from whatever bondage we've fallen into we MUST set ourselves apart for the Lord and is purposes. I mean think about it "when he comes, he finds is empty, swept and put in order", a perfect place to come back to...unless it is no longer open to him and has been set apart and consecrated to a new owner.

When I was reading about sanctification there were two words that seemed to occur together often. These words were sanctification and I looked them up. Sanctification means to set apart for sacred use, to consecrate, to make holy and to purify. It seems possible that we can be "set in order" or "fixed", but not "clean" or "pure". As long as we are "empty" we won't stay fixed. There's no one to keep us from falling into disrepair.

Clean...this was my favorite. Clean means to be not infected, to be sharply defined or clear-cut, to be devoid of encumbrances, to be thorough and complete. I'm gonna break this down a little.
To me clean means...
To not be infected by the lusts and lies that are thrown my way
To be sharply defined as a daughter of the most high God and clear cut in what she believes
To be devoid of the encumbrances of the past and the weight of the struggles I am fighting now
To be complete and whole in God's grace

So, once our house is put in order...don't stop there, don't leave it empty. Fill it with the Lord and walk in hope.

"Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour. " 1 Peter 5:8
"For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ, they are again entangled in them and overcome, the latter is worse for them than the beginning." 2 Peter 2:20

Sunday, May 25, 2008


This somg is off of Tenth Avenue North's new CD Over and

I know I need You
I need to love You
I’d love to see You but it’s been so long
I long to feel You
I feel this need for You
I need to hear You
Is that so wrong?
Now You pull me near You
When we’re close I fear You
Still I’m afraid to tell you all that I’ve done
Are You done forgiving?
Can You look past my pretending?
I’m so tired of defending what I’ve
What have I become?
But I hear You say
My love is over
It’s underneath
It’s inside
It’s in between
The times you doubt me
And when you can’t feel
The times that you question
Is this for real?
The times that you’re broken
The times that you mend
The times you hate me
The times that you bend
My love is over
It’s underneath
It’s inside
It’s in between
The times that you’re healing
And when your heart breaks
The times that you feel like you’ve fallen from
The times that you’re hurting
The times that you heal
The times you go hungry and are tempted
to steal
In times of confusion
In chaos and pain
I’m there in your sorrow under the weight of
your shame
I’m there in your heart-ache
I’m there through the storm
My love I will keep you by my power alone
I don’t care where you’ve fallen or where
you have been
I’ll never forsake you
My love never ends
It never ends

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Here I am

Here I am, once more amazed,
just passed the fear and past the pain;
sitting at the feet of You who sees no more my sin.
My scarlet letter hung all around,
my feet unsteady, my heart was drowned.
My hope was faint, my light was dim,
my strength was gone, and love was thin.
Occasionally I would glance Your way and with a languished cry I’d say,
“I see You there, but Your way is hard. Your call is heard, but my will is strong.”
So after a pathetic plea for aid, I’d run again so far away.
With angry tears I cried and wept, for I was trapped in my adored prison.
So there I laid for many days, trapped in this place my lust had made,
wondering when all hope would fade and the ache and frustration would only remain.

As I sat in this pitiful state I heard the voice I heard many a day;
nothing imposing, nothing too forceful,
but so deep and severe that it cut like a knife.

It was Your summon, gentle and strong,
calling me back to the place I belong.
And as I looked up, I did think it strange,
that in all of my filth You found me again.

You lifted me up and carried me home,
In You strong arms, my heart was made whole.
You broke off the chains that bound me so tight
and allowed me a chance to re-route my life.

You showed me a new path,
Gave me a new song,
Taught me the dance meant for me all along.

I will not wait for those lovers less wild,
who promise me all, but leave me wanting for the very thing they claim to give.
For all this and more my heart is now Yours,
All love and all passion and all glory for You.

Here I am, once more amazed,
just passed the fear and past the pain;
sitting at the feet of You who sees no more my sin.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Taking thoughts captive

For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ, and being ready to punish all disobedience when your obedience is fulfilled. 2 cor 10:3-6
There is SO much wisdom in these verses. Whether we are dealing with sin or just the daily distractions of life, this concept is an essential part of a working relationship with God.
Our bodies are (for obvious reasons) physical beings. We have skin, muscles, bones, organs etc. We use them to work, play, study...whatever. We also use tools and we know from experience that certain tools have certain uses and when we use them correctly things go smoothly. However, when we take those tools out of their intended use...things don't work. If there is something I have learned these last months is that I cannot fight a spiritual battle with physical weapons. I have tried and failed miserably.
There are tools for spiritual warfare (the armor of God Ephesians 6:11-18) and those are the tools we have to use in order to fight these spiritual battles. What are these weapons good for? They're good for "for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ, and being ready to punish all disobedience when your obedience is fulfilled."
Imagine that...tearing down strongholds...I know we all have strongholds somewhere in our lives. This has rang true in my personal experiences. These strongholds become like a vice that will choke the life right out of you have the Sword of the Spirit, the word of God, to beat it off with. There is something interesting about these strongholds. They make the claim that the are stronger, fiercer and more all consuming than anything else...they exalt themselves up against the most high. What brings down these things that exalt themselves? Again, our sword.

The next thing is to bring these thoughts into captivity. Not only bringing them into captivity, but acting accordingly. In Philippians 4:8-9 Paul tells the Philippians to think on the the things that are true, noble, just, pure, etc. But he doesn't stop there. In verse 9 he exhorts them to think about the good things, but to also act upon them. It doesn't do any good to know them if you're not living by them. Therefore, to him who knows to do good and does not do [it], to him it is sin. James 4:17
I'm not going to pretend for a moment that this act of captivating thoughts is instantaneous, or easy, or fun. It's none of those. Learning, in God's grace,to take my thoughts captive and bring them under the authority of Christ has been the scariest, most difficult and most painful thing I've ever done. Parts of your old flesh and desires die and death never feels good. However, it has also been one of the best things that could have happened to my relationship with Christ.
Captivating my thoughts under the authority of Christ is the only thing that has started that change in my thinking. The unwholesome thoughts still try to creep in sometimes, but now I am learning to stop them at the door of my heart, bring them to my Lord to let Him decide on them, then deal with them in obedience to His word.

And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God. Romans 12:2

Sunday, May 18, 2008

These are just some verses and Utmost entries that went along very well with mt last post...
1 Peter 1:13-15: Therefor, gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and rest your hope fully upon the grace that is to be brought to you at the revelation on Jesus Christ; as obedient Children, not conforming yourselves to the former lusts, as in you ignorance.

1 Peter 5:6-11: Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you. Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world. But may the God of all grace, who called us to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you. To Him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen.

From My Utmost for His Highest April 19 - 1 kings 2:28
We are apt to say - "It is not in the least likely that having been through the supreme crisis, I
shall turn now to the things of the world." Do not forecast where the temptation will come, it is the least likely thing that is the peril. In the aftermath of a great spiritual transaction the "retired sphere of the leasts" begins to tell; it is not dominant, but remember it is there, and if you are not warned, it will trip you up. You have remained true to God under great and intense trials, now beware of the undercurrent. Do not be morbidly introspective, looking forward with dread, but keep alert; keep your memory bright before God. Unguarded strength is double weakness because that is where the "retired sphere of the leasts" saps. The Bible characters fell on their strong points, never on their weak ones. "Kept by the power of God" - that is the only safety.

"For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation." 2 Corinthians 7:10

Conviction of sin is best portrayed in the words -
"My sins, my sins, my Saviour,How sad on Thee they fall."

Conviction of sin is one of the rarest things that ever strikes a man. It is the threshold of an understanding of God. Jesus Christ said that when the Holy Spirit came He would convict of sin, and when the Holy Spirit rouses a man's conscience and brings him into the presence of God, it is not his relationship with men that bothers him, but his relationship with God - "against Thee, Thee only, have I sinned, and done this evil in Thy sight." The marvels of conviction of sin, forgiveness, and holiness are so interwoven that it is only the forgiven man who is the holy man, he proves he is forgiven by being the opposite to what he was, by God's grace. Repentance always brings a man to this point: I have sinned. The surest sign that God is at work is when a man says that and means it. Anything less than this is remorse for having made blunders, the reflex action of disgust at himself.
The entrance into the Kingdom is through the panging pains of repentance crashing into a man's respectable goodness; then the Holy Ghost, Who produces these agonies, begins the formation of the Son of God in the life. The new life will manifest itself in conscious repentance and unconscious holiness, never the other way about. The bedrock of Christianity is repentance. Strictly speaking, a man cannot repent when he chooses; repentance is a gift of God. The old Puritans used to pray for "the gift of tears." If ever you cease to know the virtue of repentance, you are in darkness. Examine yourself and see if you have forgotten how to be sorry.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

A dependant spirit and an independant flesh

My Bible study hit me right between the eyes today. It's disgusting how, as things start to get better, I start to become so independent. It's like I start to take credit for the fact that things have gotten better. As if I could possibly have ANYTHING to do with the fact that I'm beginning to walk in freedom from these sinful eating habits. The very idea is completely asinine. Did I forget that only a few short weeks ago I was entirely helpless in my condition and if my savior hadn't stepped in and plucked me from the mire of habitual sin that I would still be there? How in the world did I allow myself to consider that? Now, I'm not saying that I thought out any of this. I didn't go "okay, now that God has done all this, I'm going to take some credit for myself." It just sort of creeped in. My spirit wants nothing more than total dependence and surrender to God, but my flesh is wayward in it's very nature. It desires independence and glory. Essentially, it's pride. And it always comes before a fall.

So, what to I do now in order to put God back in His rightful place? I seek His voice. Nothing in my flesh can survive the power of His voice. If I obey the voice of God, my flesh (desires, lusts, whatever) will die, but if I don't...eventually my spirit crumble.

It's only by His grace that I am learning to walk in freedom and who am I to take credit for something only He can do?

"Beware that you do not forget the LORD your God by not keeping His commandments, His judgments, and His statutes which I command you today, "lest--when you have eaten and are full, and have built beautiful houses and dwell in them; "and when your herds and your flocks multiply, and your silver and your gold are multiplied, and all that you have is multiplied; when your heart is lifted up, and you forget the LORD your God who brought you out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage." Deut 8:11-14
Jeremiah 17:5-8 is a good bit of scripture...not that it's not all good...I thought it was really interesting in verse 6 when he said that the person who trusts in himself "shall not see when good comes". I when I trusted in my flesh I withered spiritually, but what really rang true for me was how that misplaced trust blinded me. I was so focused on food that I missed some of the good things that were going on around me. I am thankful and believe that my Lord can redeem that lost time.

Trusting in the Lord is allowing me to be open handed and ready to receive those blessings He has for me. Also, when I place my trust in Him, I don't need to worry when the struggles and dry times come. He will sustain me.

Monday, May 12, 2008

One thing needful

I read something really cool in my Bible study yesterday. It was talking about what it means to sit at the feet of Jesus and how important that is (Luke 10:38-42). When we are at His feet we must have attitude of humility and submission. We will also be willing to learn from Christ and faith in Him. We will hold to His teachings by hearing, believing and obeying them and we will love our Lord with everything in us.

I just loved how everything built on each other. Sitting at the feet of Jesus means that we love Him. If we love Him then we listen, believe and obey His commands. If we are going to believe Him then we must have faith in Him and since we need to know what we have faith in we must learn from Him and learn about Him. If we are ever going to learn anything from Him we have to submit to His authority and submitting to authority requires humility.
I've had a little time to calm down since my last post. I realize that it might have been a little harsh, so I will attempt to explain myself in a calmer fashion. I'm not coming down on anyone who has gone through these programs or been helped by them. Sometimes, you have to have outside intervention to get you stable enough to begin to think about heart change. I think my problem is that destructive eating habits are being misrepresented to those who participate in them. If it's lack of control they struggle with, saying that it's a disease isn't going to help them feel more in control. If you believe that you are powerless to fight something you're not going to bother trying to fight it. Right?

I think the root of my problem with today's view of destructive eating habits is that it unconsciously adds deception to deception. We are already deceived by our distorted body image and obsession with weight, then we are deceived again by the promise of help by programs that can only offer a band-aid. We get bandaged up, but we don't get healed (see Repaired or Restored on 4/16).

Saturday, May 10, 2008

A disturbing trend in the world of "disordered eating"

Okay, I've been looking at some blogs of other people who are struggling with destructive eating habits recently and I'm seeing a disturbing trend. It's not a new trend, but now that I'm going through this In His Image program, I'm really seeing it. I have read many, times that eating disorders are diseases or mental illnesses. I don't want to sound mean, but...that's wrong and as long as people think this way, they are never going to get better. Okay, they might stop the behavior through therapy programs, but at the end of the day they are no better off. Cancer is a disease. Schizophrenia is a mental illness. Disordered eating is a sin. It's a form of bondage. That doesn't make it any less destructive that cancer or schizophrenia, it just changes the treatment. It involves taking responsibility for how one has treated one's body.

I know I read somewhere that this person felt like their eating disorder (I'm really beginning to hate the phrase) was a part of them and that they didn't go a second without thinking about it. Been there. I know how that feels, but I'm also learning that that doesn't have to be it...getting better isn't just about stopping a behavior. It's changing your outlook and your attitude towards yourself and about the reason you are here (renewing your mind). And that reason is to glorify God in everything. Now...I'm want this to sound like I've got it down or that I'm walking in total and utter freedom, because I'm not. To pretend like I am would be absolutely idiotic, but I know what works. I wish I could communicate that to other people who have fallen into destructive eating habits.

Create in me a clean heart, O God, And renew a steadfast spirit within me. Psalm 51:10

Fools, because of their transgression,
And because of their iniquities, were afflicted.
Their soul abhorred all manner of food,
And they drew near to the gates of death.
Then they cried out to the LORD in their trouble,
And He saved them out of their distresses.
He sent His word and healed them,
And delivered them from their destructions.
Oh, that men would give thanks to the LORD for His goodness,
And for His wonderful works to the children of men!
Let them sacrifice the sacrifices of thanksgiving,
And declare His works with rejoicing
Psalm 107:17-22

Friday, May 9, 2008

I just wanted to congradulate myself on having 100 people look at my blog...even though they have been the same two people. I appreciate your support :) lol good night

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Those who say "AHA!"

Psalm 40
I WAITED patiently for the LORD;
And He inclined to me,
And heard my cry.
He also brought me up out of a horrible pit,
Out of the miry clay,
And set my feet upon a rock,
And established my steps.
He has put a new song in my mouth--
Praise to our God;
Many will see it and fear,
And will trust in the LORD.
Blessed is that man who makes the LORD his trust,
And does not respect the proud, nor such as turn aside to lies.
Many, O LORD my God, are Your wonderful works
Which You have done;
And Your thoughts toward us
Cannot be recounted to You in order;
If I would declare and speak of them,
They are more than can be numbered.
Sacrifice and offering You did not desire;
My ears You have opened.
Burnt offering and sin offering You did not require.
Then I said, "Behold, I come;
In the scroll of the book it is written of me.
I delight to do Your will, O my God,
And Your law is within my heart."
I have proclaimed the good news of righteousness
In the great assembly;
Indeed, I do not restrain my lips,
O LORD, You Yourself know.
I have not hidden Your righteousness within my heart;
I have declared Your faithfulness and Your salvation;
I have not concealed Your lovingkindness and Your truth
From the great assembly.
Do not withhold Your tender mercies from me, O LORD;
Let Your lovingkindness and Your truth continually preserve me.
For innumerable evils have surrounded me;
My iniquities have overtaken me, so that I am not able to look up;
They are more than the hairs of my head;
Therefore my heart fails me.
Be pleased, O LORD, to deliver me;
O LORD, make haste to help me!
Let them be ashamed and brought to mutual confusion
Who seek to destroy my life;
Let them be driven backward and brought to dishonor
Who wish me evil
Let them be confounded because of their shame,
Who say to me, "Aha, aha!"
Let all those who seek You rejoice and be glad in You;
Let such as love Your salvation say continually,
"The LORD be magnified!"
But I am poor and needy;
Yet the LORD thinks upon me.
You are my help and my deliverer;
Do not delay, O my God.

David likes to talk about the people who were trying to kill him all the time. I've read verses similar to these (13-15) many times and have always thought, "I've never really had people wish me evil. People have hurt me, but they have never gone after my life like Saul did with David." I didn't see how it applied to me. Then it all started to make sense...sort of. These people may not be "people" at all. Those who "seek to destroy my life" may be the workers of Satan who come to spread lies and tear down our walk with God. I know it sounds weird, but I think I might be on to something.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Work out what God works in

This is what I read today in My Utmost for His was pretty awesome


"Work out your own salvation." Philippians 2:12-13

Your will agrees with God, but in your flesh there is a disposition which renders you powerless to do what you know you ought to do. When the Lord is presented to the conscience, the first thing conscience does is to rouse the will, and the will always agrees with God. You say - "But I do not know whether my will is in agreement with God." Look to Jesus and you will find that your will and your conscience are in agreement with Him every time. The thing in you which makes you say "I shan't" is something less profound than your will; it is perversity, or obstinacy, and they are never in agreement with God. The profound thing in man is his will, not sin. Will is the essential element in God's creation of man: sin is a perverse disposition which entered into man. In a regenerated man the source of will is almighty. "For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of His good pleasure." You have to work out with concentration and care what God works in; not work your own salvation, but work it out, while you base resolutely in unshaken faith on the complete and perfect Redemption of the Lord. As you do this, you do not bring an opposed will to God's will, God's will is your will, and your natural choices are along the line of God's will, and the life is as natural as breathing. God is the source of your will, therefore you are able to work out His will. Obstinacy is an unintelligent 'wadge' that refuses to be enlightened; the only thing is for it to be blown up with dynamite, and the dynamite is obedience to the Holy Spirit.
Do I believe that Almighty God is the source of my will? God not only expects me to do His will, but He is in me to do it.

Monday, May 5, 2008

New Jeans

Well....all my jeans were getting tight, so I couldn't put it off anymore....I had to go get bigger jeans. I'm up to 1's now :O It wasn't like I was ecstatic about it, but I know it's a good thing. The way I looked at it that helped me was having to get new jeans means I'm putting on weight, putting on weight means I'm getting better, getting better means I'm healing and healing means my walk with God is continuing to strengthen...and that is the good thing.

A quick bounce back

Yesterday was a good day. It was fun, refreshing, encouraging and challenging. After church and a game of racket ball and bunch of friends came over for the afternoon. When I got home from racket ball I went ahead and made lunch. After I ate I realized that the numbers didn't add up and that they were higher than what I expected. I was very annoyed. I went to mom and was like "you didn't do this right". We fixed it, but I was still messed up mentally. That hasn't' happened for a while, but it creeped up and after being in a mood for a while mom strongly suggested that I take some time and pray. After grousing for a couple more minutes I took her advice and the recovery time was unbelievable. I sat down, prayed and started refocusing back on God and within 10 minutes I was back to a normal functioning level. It was all good. He is so merciful.

Psalm 25

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Coming Back to Life

That's sort of how I feel. It's kind of like I've been sick and in bed for a long time and I'm finally starting to wake up. I know it sounds weird, but it's how I've felt lately. I can feel my strength coming back physically, emotionally and spiritually. There are still the lagging symptoms that start to act up now and then. Shreds of sin that still have to be taken out, but I'm coming back to myself again. I think one of the things this whole situation has taught me is my need for God. I've always known that I need Him, but once I began to see how filthy and dirty I really was on the inside I really began to understand how much I need Him and how much of me still has to be remade.

There have been two songs that have really spoken to me this week. One is by a group called Echoing Angels and the other one is by BarlowGirl. They kind of hit where I'm at right now.

Coming Back To Life
I take a breath and I’m alive

Feels like for the first time
I have seen You through these eyes.
Everything I used to be

That lived inside of me Is gone, for the last time.
I remember everything I’ve done
But You’ve forgiven each and everyone

And I’m coming back to life
I’m living inside
All of my fears are far behind
I’m coming back to life
I found what I need

And it’s You Lord I know that it’s
You That brings me back to life

I’ve searched the world just for a sign
Hoping I could find someone
Who could change a heart like mine
I read the stories of your life
The miracles and signs
You turned my water into wine.
It’s so much easier knowing you are hear
And all the doubts at once seem to disappear
My feet are dancing
My heart is crying out for you
So take my life I’m giving it to you

I Need You To Love Me
Why, why are You still here with me Didn't You see what I've done? In my shame I want to run and hide myself But it's here I see the truth I don't deserve You

[Chorus:]But I need You to love me, and I I won't keep my heart from You this time And I'll stop this pretending that I can Somehow deserve what I already have I need You to love me

I, I have wasted so much time Pushing You away from me I just never saw how You could cherish me 'Cause You're a God who has all things And still You want me Your love makes me forget what I have been Your love makes me see who I really am Your love makes me forget what I have been

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new. 2 Corinthians 5:17

Things aren't really easy, but they're being reconstructed and made new.