LSOF: Healed, but still wounds remain

I remember when I got in my first car accident. I was 17 yrs old and it was the summer of 67 counties in Florida covered by wildfires. When it rained the visibility was only about 100 ft. It was crazy. I was leaving from my job and driving a new Mazda RX7 1983 that my dad bought me. It had more power than I knew what to do with or control.

I stopped at the sign. I looked left and right before putting my foot on the gas. I stepped on the gas hard, and immediately the car started to spin. I was scared and I could not regain control.

I saw the truck coming, and he wasn’t stopping. I felt the impact.

I felt my car door open. An old man was standing there asking if I was ok. He helped me out of my car and into his home and sat me down on the recliner. My neck felt numb, my entire body didn’t have feeling.

I knew I had been in a car accident. That is all.

The guy whose truck I hit was pacing back and forth in the kitchen, grumbling.

I asked, ” Should I call somebody?” and  taking the phone I couldn’t remember my parents number. I remembered finally a few minutes before the ambulance got there.

The old man and his wife didn’t leave my side. They stayed to make sure I was ok.

The ambulance came. I was placed on a stretcher and taken to the hospital so they could see the damage done to my neck. My neck ended up being okay, but  I had a bruise that went all the way down my leg.

I was wounded, but eventually the bruises too went away.

I’m sharing this story with you, because I realized something profound to my heart yesterday out of

Psalm 147:3. 

” He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.” 

I read it over and over. It spoke volumes to me.

Think about it friends—- He HEALS the brokenhearted first, and then binds up their wounds.

I think I’ve always looked at the word ” Heal” as something that happens completely, but according to what we read in this verse, its a two step process.

The old man from my accident wanted to make sure I was ok. He stayed with me, and he and his wife calmed me down and helped me remember where I was, and my phone number so I could call my parents.

I believe that is the first part of Psalm 147:3 ” He HEALS the brokenhearted.” —– He makes sure we are okay, He stays at our side and watches how we react to the things happening around us, and He calms us down so we can remember who we are and to go about our day. But its not at this time that we are healed completely of our wounds. You can’t help someone whose unconscious with their wounds until you know they are breathing, and alive. I think God works the same way in the way He brings healing.

I also looked up ” Heal” in the Greek and it means, ” To still.”  He keeps us at peace.

The second part of Psalm 147:3 says, ” He binds up their wounds.” 

Can you think back to anything you have dealt with for a long time in your life and you woke up one day and suddenly it was no longer part of your world, it no longer had affect on your life.

That’s what I mean. Once we are at peace with what we deal with then God can work on it and repair what is truly broken.

The process is sometimes not easy for us. While He may be fixing one wound we might be dealing with needing healing from something else.

But its about how we react to everything ultimately.

Psalm 38:11

My friends and companions avoid me because of my wounds; my neighbors stay far away.

I saw this verse the other day, and I really thought about it.

I didn’t understand why with so much going on in my life how the people that were supposed to be closest to me started to dwindle away the worse things became.

But what I realized through everything. People don’t understand our wounds, because they can’t understand their own. We have to let them know the blessings, the positives that come out of what we are going through. As weird as it may sound, people look for encouragement through our pain, they look to us to respond in a way that would help them deal with their situations.

James 1:2-3

Consider it pure joy, my brothers whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work to that you may be mature and complete not lacking anything.

In my current season of healing it feels like things are finally changing course. Now its about getting focused again, and focused on all the things that are set above.

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” I’m Already There…”

There is this song by Lonestar, ” I’m Already There…” and it is about a man calling his family while he is away. He is sad he could not be there with them, but to comfort himself and his family he just answers:

I’m already there
Take a look around
I’m the sunshine in your hair
I’m the shadow on the ground

I’m the whisper in the wind
I’m your imaginary friend
And I know, I’m in your prayers
Oh I’m already there

Music touches my heart so deeply when it comes to my faith, because I read lyrics not in the sense of what the song is trying to convey but what I believe God is speaking to me through it. It doesn’t have to be a Christian song at all, God speaks through everything.

I brought this particular song up, because there is a verse that has been on my heart for the past few weeks. It is interesting, because this particular verse that is found out of Deuteronomy was a concept I saw inside the verse last year. God speaks through what He knows we already know.

Before I go into this verse in Deuteronomy 31:8, I want to share a bit about the beginning of Deuteronomy 31, and give an idea as to what is happening.

Picture Moses, Joshua, and the Isrealites standing on the edge of the river. Moses is 120 years old. He has done what God had asked of him, and God was ready to raise up a leader in Joshua.
Moses knew that the people would be hesitant to leave him, but also knew he needed to prepare the people that his journey with them had come to an end.

“I am now a hundred and twenty years old and I am no longer able to lead you. The LORD has said to me, ‘You shall not cross the Jordan.’ The LORD your God himself will cross over ahead of you. He will destroy these nations before you, and you will take possession of their land. Joshua also will cross over ahead of you, as the LORD said.” (Deuteronomy 31:2-3)

I think what might be being said here is that the people would not be able to face the nations before them until an appointed time. God had to cross over first, and then he would have Joshua follow Him.

I love how it did not go like this, ” Joshua will go ahead of you, and we hope he finds God there.”

Just as Moses was preparing the Isrealites for his departure with them, I would suggest that knowing Joshua no longer had Moses for a leader, that he was handed the staff and in Moses eyes it could have been said, ” Your Lord God will cross over before YOU.” He might have wanted Joshua to know that he would not be leading the people alone or blindly. He might have said that to first and foremost comfort Joshua.

The LORD will deliver them to you, and you must do to them all that I have commanded you. Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.” (Deuteronomy 31: 5-6)

Moses shares that the nations would be delivered to them, which is exactly why God told them to stay put and wait. God would know exactly what the best plan would be for the people. He tells them there is no reason to be afraid. God already knows the outcome.

“Be strong and courageous, for you must go with this people into the land that the LORD swore to their ancestors to give them, and you must divide it among them as their inheritance. 8 The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” (Deuteronomy 31:7-8)

There is a pattern we can see in Deuteronomy 31 that I have not seen with other scripture. Moses tells the people: ” The Lord God will crossover before you,” ” The Lord goes with you,” ” The Lord himself, goes before you, and will be with you.”

I love how God never once says he is going ahead of them without saying that He will also be with them.

I think too often we forget that God knows the plans He has for us, but that He does not leave us to take them on alone. He is there with us through the journey.

I know as someone who is preparing to be led a different direction in my life, one that means it is a journey He leads, but that I follow; that there will be people following my footsteps too.

As many times as I’ve seen this verse the last few weeks in Deuteronomy 31:8, I can’t help but hear God saying loudly to my heart, ” I got this, I have your back, if you get discouraged…I may be ahead of you, but I’m still right here.”

We are not meant to go through this life alone, regardless of how much knowledge we think we have on accomplishing something, and regardless what position we have, we need to know we have support, we need to know God is there, and that He will place people in our lives that help to mold us into what He needs us to become for His namesake.

God is going to ask us to lead. It might mean we are going to have to put something down. It might mean the things we have to let go of might be people in our life. It might mean we have to change who we are so much that it takes a toll on us. It might mean that we might have to lose our lives completely for the cost of following Christ.

Whatever it means for us. He already knows, He was already there.

We are standing in his footprint.

LSOF: Having the last Word

Acts 20:22-24
And now, compelled by the Spirit, I am going to Jerusalem, not knowing what will happen to me there. I only know that in every city the Holy Spirit warns me that prison and hardships are facing me. However, I consider my life worth nothing to me, if only I may finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me—the task of testifying to the gospel of God’s grace.

Did you ever think of what kind of legacy would be left after you died? Did you ever think of the kind of impact you’ve had on this world to this point of your life? Did you ever wonder if you were even making a difference at all?

Now let me ask you this. How many books have you read? How many books have you read that you can remember the smallest details? How many books have you shared with others, and just gave them such a great synopsis to the point that
they didn’t even need the book?
Okay, now let me ask you, how many times did you start a book at put it down? How many times did you read a little bit in each chapter just to find out what would happen in the end, nothing more than the jist? How many times did someone ask you about a book you said you read all the way through, knowing that you really and truly didn’t read it all the way through?

Now what if it was someone who didn’t know who Jesus was? What if they asked you about apart of the Bible? What if they asked you about the Creation story? Or ” The Great Flood” or ” The Christmas Story..”
and you didn’t really know anything more than bits and pieces of it…

My family was talking last night about Politics, which I am not going into it at all,
its just about what God spoke to my heart after the fact.
If we look at this as a political perspective then we will miss the message all together.

I have something to let you know if you don’t already…we aren’t going to live forever.

At the end of the day, should it really matter to us what is going on in government after the fact?
Maybe it matters to our hearts, but what should matter more is how we as Christians
would prepare for the next step?

I don’t know about you, but I am not going to spend all day glued to the TV watching CNN, and listening to all the
liberals, and everyonelse sit there and talk straight politics…

I mean if the time to vote was to come, and I had to have knowledge of certain things I would be voting for
that’s fine, but I am talking about just listening to useless conversation. We should not really be people that take
part in that. What we let in, we keep in…and what comes out as a result of it…could prove to be not good.

I think if we truly believe in God and love His Word, then that is what we should be putting our concentration on,
take a look at this verse:

Daniel 2:21-22
He changes times and seasons;
he sets up kings and deposes them.
He gives wisdom to the wise
and knowledge to the discerning.
He reveals deep and hidden things;
he knows what lies in darkness,
and light dwells with him.

Take a look at what is underlined. God knows who is in power. If you follow the book of Daniel,
things continue to happen to him and his friends, but God comes through for them.

I mean standing in front of a hot-breathed, monstrous lion, whose teeth were bigger than every finger on his
hands. And God had kept the animal from bringing Daniel harm. It is what He does.

There is all this mindless gossip about our leaders, and how some might say the “anti-christ” is upon us…
but see the thing about that is…who are they to decide?

If they were smart, if they really were concerned about it…instead of pure gossip those same people
should be getting on their knees and praying to God. They should be reading the Bible as much as they can.

And here’s why, because if we are truly living in the ” last days” then we also know that ” book burning” is
in the future, and we must learn all we can now, because when that day comes…where will we be able to teach from?

I went to an amazing service at Grace Uprising, in Nashville TN and met up with my friend Pam Case. They are doing a message series on ” What not to wear” talking about as a Christian.

So of course later as I was driving home, my heart took it deeper…its not only what we wear in front of others,
but its what we are wearing inside of our heart.

When the day comes that we can no longer read a Bible, we have to be able to pull that knowledge from somewhere.

We have to learn to not just read the Bible, but to actually apply it to our lives so much that it stays within
our hearts.

You may know the simple verses, but when it comes down to it…how much do you really know?

What would it be like to be the only one on Earth that actually remembered what the Bible said?
What would it be like to be sitting in a jail cell persecuted for your beliefs, with non-Christians, who
wanted to know what you did?

I can think of Paul in all of this so clearly.

Acts 26:29
Then Agrippa said to Paul, “Do you think that in such a short time you can persuade me to be a Christian?”

29Paul replied, “Short time or long—I pray God that not only you but all who are listening to me today may become what I am, except for these chains.”

At this time Paul was thrown into prison and then for years was going back and forth
for the “charges” against him. However, it took a good while for those in power to decide he
had to die.

When he finally was faced talking to King Agrippa, he told him about meeting Jesus on the road, he told him
that his name was once different, he told him that he used to kill Christians. And the King thought he was nuts.

But the important thing is to know, Paul had his story to share, he knew what God’s promises were.

2 Timothy 2:8-13
So do not be ashamed to testify about our Lord, or ashamed of me his prisoner. But join with me in suffering for the gospel, by the power of God, 9who has saved us and called us to a holy life—not because of anything we have done but because of his own purpose and grace. This grace was given us in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time, but it has now been revealed through the appearing of our Savior, Christ Jesus, who has destroyed death and has brought life and immortality to light through the gospel. And of this gospel I was appointed a herald and an apostle and a teacher. That is why I am suffering as I am. Yet I am not ashamed, because I know whom I have believed, and am convinced that he is able to guard what I have entrusted to him for that day.
What you heard from me, keep as the pattern of sound teaching, with faith and love in Christ Jesus. Guard the good deposit that was entrusted to you—guard it with the help of the Holy Spirit who lives in us.

I attended an amazing weekend with Beth Moore, my siestas, and some other wonderful people, and I have to
tell you that we walked away not just with a Word given from ” So Long Insecurity”, but a Word God brought
to all of our hearts after.

Sometimes you will just have a Word that is placed in your heart…that you can’t put into Words. But live out.
I think that we learned so much more what God’s love was through being in His presence with one another.

I think this is what it was like for Paul:
He had the Word in his heart, and he lived it out and he wore it with him all the way
to heaven.

LSOF: Colorblind Faith

I’m sitting here watching CNN about a story on landmines in Afganistan.

The news reporter shares a shot of video with a truck going by some some children on there way home from school, suddenly there is nothing but an explosion of fire filling the video screen.

In the war, our troops are taught all sorts of things; to be prepared for anykind of danger that they might encounter.

In another video clip, it shows the troops being taught how to look for landmines.

They are taught to pay attention to a ” red” wire. If they see it, to avoid getting any closer to it, or anyone around them.

Knowing the color could save their lives, or someone around them.

My best friend Kat, she was born color-blind. She is unable to see blues and greens.

Her son and her husband both have blue eyes. She can only see bright diamonds when she looks into them.

Can you imagine for a moment, knowing what color to look for, but it being impossible for you to see it?
To know what color your loved ones eyes are, and hearing what others say about them, but not being able to experience it for yourself?

She has her own way of deciphering colors though. She uses her wedding ring, and she holds it up to the color she is looking at. She taught herself how to see the colors she can’t see.

I’m looking out at the blue sky right now, and realize how very blessed I am to have been able to see it.

I don’t see it, because someone told me that it was blue. I see it, because I was born to see it, the way God wants me to see it.

In dealing with religion for a moment, to supposed to a real true relationship with God; there are colors that God wants to show us, within our faith. And if religion plays a role in this, if there are a myriad of traditions, and rituals…we may miss the part God wants us to see entirely.

I hope this is starting to make sense, I know its a tough concept, but it has been waring on my heart for awhile.

I have to encourage others to make their ” faith” their own, I actually plead with anyone to.

I had to learn through the deepest wilderness who God really was to me. It was horrible. I was in the wilderness of ” false prophets” before I would begin to see God the way He wanted me to.

Are you the sort of person that ever says, ” My Pastor said this..or my Pastor said that…and that we should do this…or we should do that…”

Yes, we do learn about God through Godly people, BUT we have to remember that talking about them more than what God SAYS; it places them higher than God.

I didn’t really know anything other than what my parents, or my church taught about God. My Pastor and his wife taught me so much over the years; but it was more of what they TOLD me I should believe instead of me KNOWING the WHY I should believe it.

Because I didn’t BELIEVE God for HIS Word; Because I didn’t know it in HEART knowledge but only MIND; I missed out on the true color of salvation, I missed out on knowing the actual color of Jesus’s blood.

I created a landmine for myself, and I stepped right in it; because I didn’t recognize the color. I didn’t recognize the color of danger in front of me.

We have to have knowledge that we need to see life in the color God wants us to. We have to acknowledge the traffic light in front of us; and GO only when its green, and so on.

And when the Holy Spirit, that is also that still small voice inside us tells us to STOP to NOT GO ANY FURTHER; we need to heed that warning; and PAY ATTENTION!!!

I fell into the religious trap, because I knew when there was warning when my church told me, but I didn’t know when I was all alone, on my own, 25 miles away.

Eventually, this faith I had; which now I look back on it, was a make shift idea of what I thought, ” Faith” was; it wasn’t enough to save me. I had fallen victim to who I THOUGHT God was, and there were people who took advantage of that.

I would constantly here these ” people” tell me that I was worthless, and that I couldn’t be used by God, because I wasn’t a Jehovah Witness, they told me my blog was evil, and that the people in my life were evil, and of the world, and that i needed to break my association with them. They told me my favorite things such a Precious moments, and my angel figurines were ” Spiritualistic” and that I had to get rid of them…

I had fallen into such a deep pit, that the only way I could escape was through fire, figuratively speaking.

I ended the relationship with this religious cult, and they did all they could to mess with my life after.
I ended up losing my job, and being forced to move from the area. God physically removed me.
What Satan tried to use for EVIL, God used for GOOD.

I have an amazing job now, and I am back close to my home…I back close to my church.

But what I am trying to share with you here is, so many times you hear God placed into a box.

I love what Beth Moore quotes in Believing God, ” You say you want to send your kids to a Christian school to learn a little something about God, but what if they just learn that God is a little something?”

If you are an adult who teaches about faith, or mentors others; I am sure you know that it is very serious to make sure you don’t ” influence” others in such a way that doesn’t make everything they learn from you not, ” Biblically” sound.

I have been taught for the last 11 yrs the right and wrongs according to the Bible, but I was taught according to the Bible by what my Pastor and his wife taught me.

That was my fault. I should have opened the Bible and saw for myself.

It was actually a prayer someone prayed for me, to make my faith my own. But I don’t think they had any idea how that would come about.

If it wasn’t for facing the false prophets…I would not have found myself so deep in the wilderness that I would have no choice but to hear God’s voice Himself.

I let myself doubt a little of what I was learning, and then it took off like a tidal wave.

So today, instead of thinking back to the message you learn from church, or your favorite bible teacher, or maybe even some radio host…think back to what YOU know about the Bible, about God, and about His story.

There is so much He wants us to see, that unless we allow ourselves to see Him, without the help of holding someone’s hand…we will never get the full measure of.

Start by looking at the blue sky…and then go ahead and read Genesis.
and then go here…
” For God so loved the world, that He gave His only Son, that whoever shall live in Him,
will not perish, but have eteral life.” (John 3:16)

“The journey is long, and it doesn’t matter what it takes to get there, as long as you get there.”

This is something my very dear friend said to me yesterday, and it holds a lot of truth.

There is always hope. There is always love. There is always God.

And there are always second, and third, and zillionth more chances…to get it right.

John 9
True Blindness
1-2 Walking down the street, Jesus saw a man blind from birth. His disciples asked, “Rabbi, who sinned: this man or his parents, causing him to be born blind?” 3-5Jesus said, “You’re asking the wrong question. You’re looking for someone to blame. There is no such cause-effect here. Look instead for what God can do. We need to be energetically at work for the One who sent me here, working while the sun shines. When night falls, the workday is over. For as long as I am in the world, there is plenty of light. I am the world’s Light.”

6-7He said this and then spit in the dust, made a clay paste with the saliva, rubbed the paste on the blind man’s eyes, and said, “Go, wash at the Pool of Siloam” (Siloam means “Sent”). The man went and washed—and saw.

8Soon the town was buzzing. His relatives and those who year after year had seen him as a blind man begging were saying, “Why, isn’t this the man we knew, who sat here and begged?”

9Others said, “It’s him all right!”

But others objected, “It’s not the same man at all. It just looks like him.”

He said, “It’s me, the very one.”

10They said, “How did your eyes get opened?”

11″A man named Jesus made a paste and rubbed it on my eyes and told me, ‘Go to Siloam and wash.’ I did what he said.

When I washed, I saw.”


LSOF: HE is just that into you

I just finished watching the movie, ” He’s just not that into you”.
I took a day after being in class to spend the say with just Me:)
I figured I really wanted to see the movie, so going alone, what would be the big deal.
I laughed harder, spoke aloud things randomly, as I reacted to each scene.
Loved every minute of it:)

When I left the movie of the ” how to’s” and the ” here sees”, I practically ran out to the parking lot,
with such a deep, and heavy message.

I may not have a guy right now who’s ” into” me, but I have a GOD who very much is!

For all of you single girls out there, HE is your first love, and he is harder to get over than any guy could ever be.
So breaking up and choosing to go back to Him…its not fair to Him and He doesn’t deserve it!

I found myself turning off the radio, and singing softle aloud, ” Heart Of Worship”, It’s all about Him!

On my way home I decided to make this committed heart truly official; I went and bought another cross necklace.
Yes, I know there are purity rings out there, but a cross on my neck represents to me, my own engagement in Christ.

God has so brought so much comfort to me as I have seen my friends get married, and have kids.

I can think of the love He has for me, and I realize I could have all of this world could give me, but without His love alone;
I don’t think I could remember to breathe,
I think my heart might even stop beating.
He is my everything.

I was telling my friend the other day that my faith is the one thing I can take with me when I die. It is my most treasured possession.
Without faith. Its worse than dehydration.
Without faith, there is no hope.
Without faith, there is no love; genuine anyway.

But my God, I know that He totally gets me, that He loves to watch me from above, even writing this blog post, or as I drove here gazing into the clouds in the sky.

In 2004, I wrote a covenant between God and I, and in 2006 I broke that covenant.
2009, I wrote out the same convanent.

He is a God of second chances.

He knows where I am, and Who I’ll be.
He knows who I will love.

There is none like Him,
but perhaps someday He will give me someone that
I might be able to say is ” close” to that:)

For now, this girl’s heart is sealed:)

I love you Lord.

Angie