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Wednesday, February 29, 2012

I was asked Yesterday and Today "why?"

I was asked Yesterday about God and tragedies like the one that happened in the school in Ohio where a shooting happened and their were deaths of students. I prayed about the answer after giving my not so appropriate quick answer.

I ask is it better to be loved by someone of their own free will or by someone you hold captive and have removed their freewill. God knows the answer to that one, it is far more meaningful and true when it is done of our freewill, that is why God gave us our own free will so that our love for him is made of our choice and true.

When tragedy strikes we are quick to take it out on God but it is the freewill that is to blame as we are all free to make choices and unfortunately that is not always for the good.

I bare witness to the fact when we go through tragedies and trials if we have accepted and believe in what Jesus has done for us on the cross and ask for his forgiveness as we invite him into our lives, we do not walk alone.

I was asked today, as the snow started sticking to the ground, by a coworker if I would be going home early for fear of the slick conditions on the road, this was a fair question as I use to go into panic attacks about getting home before I couldn't for fear of what might happen on the roads. I today could freely say no I would be staying till the end of the day. I was asked why I wasn't afraid anymore. I could only answer that my story has already been written God new when I would be born and he knows when I will die. I have been freed from my fear, I do not have fear anymore except the fear of God. Psalm 139, Deuteronomy 31:8

God has been transforming ( 2Corinthians 3:17-18 ) my life since I was Baptized ( 1 Peter 3:20-22 )  I am not anywhere near the same person I was. I have been set free to be me, free of fear and shame.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Spending Time/ Being Blessed with Wisdom

Wow this week has had it's ups and downs, but thankfully more ups then downs.

Sunday I went to Church with my son and listened to the last message in the series of Jacobs life and during that time there was talk how Jacob boldly asked for to be blessed and I found myself boldly praying for a blessing with all my heart.

I was blessed with getting time on Monday to go for coffee with a dear friend. We ended up talking on the need for human contact, as we live in a world that gets farther and farther away from it. We fire off emails and text messages that are open to miss interpretation. Many things we say even if we use the exact words but change the tone in our voice can have completely different meanings, we can't portray this to someone on the other end of the written word. We now leave it up to how it is being read by the person on the other end, opening up the possibility for painful miss understandings.

Emails and text are not personal, I know when we were going through the thick of it the friendly voice of reassurance and listening was far more comforting than reading an email that my emotions could play with, without having someone have the ability to give me feedback that this wasn't the intentions of their words.

I wonder if anyone's phone rings much anymore? We thought that wouldn't it be wonderful to see if the Church fasted from electronic communications for 40 days and actually replaced it with human contact what community would come out of it as people actually spent the time listening & getting to know one an other.

Tuesday, I awoke to flash backs, something I had not had for a bit, they were intense and exhausting as I fought them. I had facebooked what I had been experiencing at first coffee break and about an hour after I could feel the prayers I was receiving as the flash backs were lessening and they were being replaced with peace and calm in my heart. I was blessed later that evening by a wonderful sister in Christ that I am starting to get to no on a bit deeper level. She gave me a ride to our pastorate. We discussed at our pastorate the last of a series we had been doing at church called The Holy Rotten Scoundrel, following Jacob's Story in the Bible, if you can go to the link I have provided through the name and take the time to watch them, a very powerful message. We had been discussing it in our small group how God always came and interacted with Jacob when he was alone and when Jacob was at the lowest points in his life and more open to hearing God.

Wednesday after work, I had a counseling appointment at 7pm at the same side of town as my work, but the opposite side of town from where I lived. I had discussed with my family the night before that I wouldn't be able to come home after work because making that extra trip home and back could be the difference between being able to make it to work till the next payday. We decided it would be financially better for me to grab a cheap burger and stay at that side of town. I went after work and grabbed my burger and sat in the restaurant. While sitting there a couple came in that I knew from my old pastorate. I finished eating my burger and while sipping on my drink and waiting for my appointment I took the opportunity to crack open my Bible something I am sad to say I hadn't done for a while. I opened it up I had Luke 14 on my heart and low and behold that is where my Bible fell open too. I started reading all the way from Luke 14 to Luke 19 God was so with me as I read and the Holy Spirit Spoke to me through the scriptures as I started relating to the words said.

I heard the Holy Spirit tell me that like the builder God is creating a foundation for the Plan he has for my life. God will in his time call me to follow him when the foundation is built. I was also told, I may not have anyone who will come to my house now but my table will be filled with the poor the crippled the blind and the lame when he opens the door for me to come follow him when the foundation is built.

I started to feel the Joy return to my heart after spending time with the one who holds my heart in his hands.

I then left to go to my counseling appointment with all my newly found wisdom from my time with God. I though was a bit slow to the up take as she said I looked calm and I gave the wrong answer as I told her I had been fighting a migraine all day..I had quite connected the dots to what she was seeing was a result of my time spent with God...I wouldn't clue in till I went home.

Thursday, I woke up to this strong thought that even if someone held a gun to my head I would not deny Christ as my Savior. I thought about that and realized before the trial we went through I would have been terrified by that thought but now it would bring me great joy to be able to die for my faith as I know that it would be a no loose situation as I know that heaven would be waiting for me.

I went to work and the wisdom kept flowing. I realized as the Holy Spirit continued to speak wisdom into my life that there was a purpose to what I went through. The Holy Spirit told me that a day would come that I would be tortured for my faith and killed. When I heard this what I went through came flooding back in my mind, but it was different this time. I was told you have experienced being beaten black and blue and the equivalent to being tortured and through that you experienced me standing with you and between you and the pain, you know that I will be there with you, there was a purpose. I have been showing you, teaching you, and testing you in preparation for the plan I have for you. I have been teaching you that you do not walk alone,  you can love as I have loved you, that you can trust as you trust me, to be free of fear knowing I am sovereign over all things and that you can forgive those, knowledge that I will all ways care for your needs and you can love those who do not know what they have done. I have also been teaching you to pray for those that are easy to pray for but also those that are hard for you to pray for.

I have to say if I hadn't gone through 2009 these thoughts would terrify me. I know get great excitement and Joy out of the thought of walking with my Lord in this way, sharing his Good News  to those who are lost.

Friday, I had been praying for a miracle even through all the wisdom I was being given as Sunday will be my Mom's 68 Birthday and over the last few years we were not in the position to do anything for her really on her Birthday as finances always got in the way. We were faced with that same problem this year but a bit worse as we had run out of groceries, as my last two paydays went to housing and gas to get to work. Friday morning I was messaged by a Sister in Christ who wanted to help. She wanted to meet me that evening. God had some pride to work on as he humbled me to respond. I was so grateful for the answered prayer and the kindness of a Sister in Christ that I have only met in person twice, but had interacted with over Facebook. We met and she handed me some money, I was so thankful and humbled by her generosity, care and trust.
God has been teaching me that I can't always be on the side of giving as there is a time he needs to work on the wall of pride. I had to sit in my vehicle for a bit as I sat in shock of the generosity and blessing I had just received. I phoned my mom and asked her if she would like to get groceries and she asked what and I explained to her the blessing we had just received and I could hear a weight being lifted of her shoulders. We went out with our list of essential groceries we had run out of (meat, veggies, fruit, juice, milk,  flour and so on) we had spent a 4/5 of the money restocking the food in our house. God has the most perfect timing and always takes care of our needs by his grace and the people he brings into our lives.

Thank you God for what you have been doing in my life and for drawing me closer and closer to you with every breathe I take. Father I lift those of this world up to you, you know them by name, you know what they are facing, fill them with your Holy Spirit, draw them close to you and if they don't know you remove the barriers that stand in the way. In all things your will be done. In Jesus Name Amen.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

It has been a while.....

  I haven't been finding the motivation to write for a while but tonight I feel the need.

Last Wednesday,  the 8 th of February, I sat waiting for the call from the Chief of Medicine for the Emergency Department of the hospital that was involved in my daughters care in 2009. I sat there not knowing how well I would be able to restrain my emotions well speaking with him. I had just worked 2days short of three weeks with one day off and 23 hrs overtime in the middle of it as we did the Early Bird RV Show. I was thinking of all the times to get the call, when I am exhausted.

He called right at the arranged time 7pm. We spoke back and forth for a bit and for the first time I heard a sincere voice on the other end apologizing for what we were put through. He also said that the evidence and the timeline strongly support the medication, that no one would wean my daughter off of, for being the cause of what my daughter and us went through. I felt a release from some of the anger that wouldn't let go in that moment as finally three years after the fact someone at the hospital finally acknowledged what we had been put through and why it happened and apologized.

I have to say that was a bitter sweet moment as the acknowledgement was big but the consequences to my family are still being played out as we struggle to survive. During the 8 months and the over 60 calls into 911 I lost allot of income and we had to take a second mortgage out on our home to survive and then when my body finally crashed and I lost my full time job for 7 months do to the PTSD(Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) the bank held our mortgage payment and gave us the money to put a new roof on the house and now we have started a repayment loan/third mortgage, but this one without a penalty attached.

I remember a few years back laughing as the news broadcast the difficulties single parents face to catch up if they miss a day or two of work, as I knew this all to well, now I am faced with trying to recover from all the work and income I lost in that 15 months. I received a paycheck 2 weeks ago short two days because I had gotten the stomach flu that had gone through work. We were faced with a choice between groceries or gas to get me to work till the next payday. We chose gas as we still had some food in the cupboards that we would have to make stretch and we would have to ration the juice and milk, because if I couldn't make it to work we would be worse off. We only had to make it to the next payday and that paycheck should be ok because I would have over 14 hrs overtime on it, at least so I thought.

Last Sunday, I found myself in a place where my pride was being chipped away as my daughter gave me the money from her paper root to put gas in the van so I wouldn't run out. My son lent me his $20. gift card to Walmart so we could get some milk and groceries, that we walked to get so we didn't use the precious bit of gas we had left to get me to work. I felt so humbled and ashamed that I couldn't support my families needs.

Today, I received my paycheck with my overtime on it. I paid the mortgages, loan and mortgage insurance with the money I had received and soon came to the reality that once again I had to make a choice, gas to get to work or groceries. I was suppose to get my haircut tomorrow but I asked my Mom to cancel it as I may have a gift certificate for the haircut, but we can't afford the gas to get me there.

Many people have wondered why I don't get out and do things or volunteer, its not because I don't want to but I have to way in whether I can afford the gas or any other expense that will come up because of it. I don't have it to do it. We have now gone into survival mode, if it isn't essential to housing/food/work it doesn't happen unless it is free and our feet can get us there.

I think I was mistaken when I said God was now working on the frame to who I am I think he is still clearing the site of all that is not of him as I learn more areas of my life where I try to do it on my own.

My life right now is still a mess and the only way out is a miracle from God as my income is less than what is going out every month and I have weighed all our options and finding there is no way out.

Father I know I keep giving into worry, fear, pride and shame. I know you are working to heal these sores in my life so that I can feel the freedom you have already given us all when you paid the price for our sins on the cross. Father please renew your strength and perseverance in my life on a daily basis. Please fill me with your Holy Spirit daily. Hold me when the pain tries to tare me apart. In Jesus Christ Name Amen.

Safe by Natalie Grant