A Consuming Fire

On Monday, I unexpectedly got to get my MRI done early. Yesterday, I got my results back.

Nothing. They found absolutely nothing. My brain & head are 100% healthy.

God is good, am I right?! He hears our prayers. He answers our prayers. He heals. He renews. He strengthens. He is so good.

My symptoms aren’t gone…yet. But I will continue to pray for that daily. & I believe so strongly that He will deliver me from this trial with His mighty, mighty hand.

It’s hard to understand why I’ve been feeling the way that I have. But I do know that God has revealed Himself to me in ways that I never knew He would. He has revealed to me wisdom that I seriously just can’t contain.

So lean in on this, brothers & sisters in Christ. God will give us many blessings in this life, & He will take many away. But why is it that we wait until He takes them away to appreciate them? Why do we wait until we are sick to appreciate being healthy? Why do we wait until we are dying to appreciate life? Why do we wait until our spouse has left to appreciate their friendship? I took so many things for granted before I fell into this sickness. I would rush through taking my dog for a walk, dread making dinner every night & put off going to the gym after work. Now, I seriously celebrate when I have the strength to do ANY of those things. I am only now recognizing how the Lord had blessed my life so graciously with good health for so many years.

I really believe that I am going through this so that I can share this with you: you are so blessed. I am so blessed. We have been given another day to taste the goodness of our God. We have a Savior who took our sin, along with our guilt, & did away with it for good. We have the hope of eternity in our hearts-an eternity in the presence of God. See, this is not something to be taken lightly. This gift of life that we have been given needs to start being experienced with a responsibility like we’ve never known before. The Word says in Hebrews 12:29 that our God is “a consuming fire.” He is not a gentle breeze that blows through every now & again to remind us that He is still around. No, He is a consuming fire. His strength is uncontainable.

He is moving among us, you guys. He is changing lives, He is changing people’s eternities every single second. He is calling us to fight, to advance, to conquer. He is healing people, saving people, raising people up. He is training leaders to speak for Him in a world that really only seems to want to speak against Him. His power cannot be quenched. THIS is the God you serve, the God I serve. THIS is the One we believe in. The One we put our hope in.

Live like you know who your God is. Thank Him for what He has poured into your life. Use the talents He has given you to advance His Kingdom. But do it now. Don’t wait-there’s a reason the Lord has spoken certain dreams into your heart at this very time. Because before you know it, you may not be able to act on these things anymore. Let yourself be consumed by Him, let Him set you on fire today. & keep on burning for Him-today, tomorrow, forever.

Fair Weather Fans

Last week, my boss told me that since it was playoff weekend, we were all going to wear football jerseys Friday through Monday. So on Friday, I excitedly pulled out my Broncos shirt & represented my team & my state proudly! There was a little bit of smack talk about Sunday’s game, a lot of bets made, & even some fighting words tossed around.

Well…now it’s Monday. & of course, I am faced with the unfortunate dilemma on whether to wear my teams jersey again (which is now the losing jersey) or not. Do I represent the team that I once had so much hope would win? The team that kind of…let me down? Or am I going to shy away, be ashamed & embarrassed that they didn’t pull through?

My decision? Well, the blue & orange on my shirt says it all. I don’t want to be a “fair weather fan” (as my mom used to call it). I want to be proud of the team I support, even when the outcome isn’t ideal.

When I was thinking about this idea of being a fair weather fan, God definitely used it to convict me on deeper levels than football. He asked me a very tough question. Am I a fair weather fan of Him? Am I okay with praising Him, proclaiming His name, even when things aren’t ideal? For me, I have had one very specific prayer for almost a year now-a prayer of healing-& yesterday in church, I prayed again that the Lord would divinely heal me. I believed for it in my heart, worshipped Him for what I was sure He was about to do, & may have even talked some smack to the devil. 😉

Well…now it’s Monday, ladies. I woke up feeling just as bad as always. & so I’m faced with this-does this outcome mean that I’m not going to wear His jersey today? That I’m not going to proclaim whose team I am on? Am I going to let the enemy soak up what looks like his victory while I’m embarrassed that God didn’t “come through” for me?

No! Here’s what I plan on doing. I plan on saying His name louder than before, telling of His goodness more boldly than before, & speaking out His truth more proudly than before. Because listen ladies, our God DOES NOT lose! He NEVER once has had an “off” game! He is STILL absolutely covered in grace, infused in mercy, & strengthened with healing! & even though I am not healed, MY GOD IS STILL A HEALER! If I get up every single day, regardless of circumstance, & put on His jersey-the jersey of worship & praise-I will never be representing the losing team. But if I put on the jersey of hopelessness & disappointment, then I am choosing to represent the enemy’s team. Well here’s a little bit of a spoiler alert: that team already lost. They’re out. I mean, no playoffs, no Superbowl, NOTHING for them. When Jesus died on that cross, He defeated them forever. & that’s why I will confidently wear HIS jersey day after day after day.

The Heart of the Matter

It may be time to get to the heart of the matter, precious Daughters of Christ. The Word speaks so much about our hearts, and how it is of much importance to keep them on the path of righteousness and integrity. Specifically, in verse 23 of Proverbs 4, we are commanded, above all else, to guard our hearts. In the ESV, it tells us to keep our hearts with vigilance. The truth is, your heart is the foundation on which you build your daily life. Your words, your thoughts, your intentions, are all dictated by the state of your heart. Matthew 12 verse 34 says, “For our of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.”

You want to know what a woman who stands in the truth of the Lord looks like? She looks humble, but so confident in her King. She looks broken, but so complete in what He has done for her. She looks grateful. She exudes love. But most importantly, she walks in discipline. To be vigilant means to keep a careful watch for approaching danger that may be ahead. It is not passive. It is alert and cautious. Because a woman who stands in truth understands that she is guarding something incredibly valuable, something not to be taken lightly. She understands that what she lets into her heart shapes her walk with her Father & the direction of her life. She won’t allow trash into her heart, because she knows how precious it is to the One who created her.

Let His Word creep into your heart. Let his Truth surround it & prayer consume it. Position yourself so very close to the Lord, & ask Him to help you to be diligent to continuously choose Him over everything else. Choose to protect the beauty that the Lord has given to you & so lovingly paid the ultimate price for. Don’t give it away to anything else-it simply isn’t theirs for the taking.

Give Me Jesus

I need Him.

I need Him because I am tangled up in this world. I need Him because I am out for my own selfish gain. I need Him because I’m insecure. Because I’m prideful. Because I’m a liar. Because my sin is ugly.

I need Him because I know I am broken, but still I long for beauty.

And oh how beautiful Christ is! How precious are the quiet moments with Him where my silent prayers are heard. How tender are the tear-filled nights with Him when He wraps His arms around me. How invigorating are the bold prayers of faith prayed by His children. How full of hope I am when His strength is displayed in my life. And oh, the peace that invades my heart when I hear the words, “it is finished.”

I want Him.

I want Him because He wanted me. I want Him because I want a life that matters, a life that is truly intoxicating. Because I can’t do it on my own. Because I don’t need to.

Psalm 55:22

“Cast your cares on the Lord and He will sustain you; He will never let the righteous be shaken.”