Sunday, October 17, 2010

What does it mean to deny yourself?

“If anyone comes to me and does not hate his father and mother, his wife and children, his brothers and sisters-yes, even his own life-he cannot be my disciple.  And anyone who does not carry his cross and follow me cannot be my disciple.”  Luke 14:26-27

I have never felt the truth of this scripture more readily than I do now.  As I walked into Westport today, my relationship with my biological family was on my mind.  I constantly struggle with how disconnected I am from them.  I love them, I think of them and I pray for them often.  But, I do not miss them.  Sometimes my heart aches for them, but never with the feeling of homesickness.  As hard as this is to admit, it is this that makes me able to move across the country to follow Christ. 

As I wondered into my church this morning, I realized that they had become my family.  These people who make up Westport church are family.  It is this place, that I found safety, that I first truly felt love, found the home I always longed for, the launching pad or base so to speak.  The one place on this earth that I know beyond a shadow of a doubt I am loved unconditionally.  It is in this moment, that I realized this family will be harder to walk away from. 

Granted, I may see them again, this side of heaven, I may not.  As God did with one of my friends in Texas, He may take one of them before I come back.  In this mindset, each moment becomes more precious, as has every contact with my biological family.  The joy of my nieces smile, the scream of “Angela” as one of my girls sees me and runs for a hug.  Each laugh, each tear becomes more precious.

Where God is leading me I do not know, but the possibilities are endless, because I can do not but chase after Christ, the one and only true lover of my soul.  My only satisfaction in all that I do.  Chasing after Christ is hard, this is why Jesus warns us to count the cost before we say we will follow Him(Luke 14:25-35).  The cost is great what He calls us to.  To walk away from everything that we hold dear because He is more.  More than I could ever want. 

The biggest lesson I have learned in my time in Oregon, is if you truly want God’s best in your life, you will be called to give up something good.  Deny yourself something that is right and just and wonderful but is only God’s good.  But for God to love us with all He is, we have to let go of everything that ties us to this land. 

Above all, the cry of my heart is “May your unfailing love rest upon us, O Lord, even as we put our hope in you.” Psalm 33:22.  With that in mind, I let go…

Monday, October 11, 2010

What fear is this?

I feel as if fear is eating away at my soul.  Regardless of the truth I know and continually state, there is a piece of my heart that is fearful.  Fear of what?  I am not sure.  I feel God’s presence more than ever, and feel as if each day I learn more about Him and trust Him more.  But each time I return to the foot of the cross and relinquish control, the fear of the unknown seems to grow in my belly.  Even sound advice from good friends, and my pleading with the Lord for help, only seem to help for so long. 

So what has a grip on my heart so deep that I won’t let it go?  I wish I knew so I could let Him heal it, but it seems so close to me that I am unaware that it is even there.  God help me to release this fear to you.  To trust you with all that I am and return to your arms and the joy of your dance.

Friday, October 8, 2010

To the foot of the Cross…

So once again, I feel as if God has called me out on the water and I dove in head first.  And once again, I hear Him whisper “I told you to come to me, not take off swimming”!  For those who have known me long enough, know I have a tendency to jump in head first and hope I swim.  And more often than not, I do pretty good.  But God has taught me a valuable lesson this past week.  That if I want great I MUST seek Him.  In all things all He wants me to do is look to Him.  “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.”  Matt 6:33


I find myself at the foot of the cross, clinging to Him.  There are so many unknowns in my life right now and all I hear from Him is wait.  Every once in a while I hear Him whisper, “this way”.  But mostly just that peace that has no explanation.  The great thing is I feel like I am flying and there is no fear in it.  I feel safe in His hand as He guides me.

I bet you are asking, well what did you dive into this thing.  I must admit that I felt God calling me to speak about Human Trafficking and I ran head long into it.  I began to brainstorm all the things that I could do to get the word out and raise money.  I began to tell people these ideas, then that soft whisper again.  I know that God has more He wants me to do, but He has only commanded me to speak.  And I have not been doing that so well.  It is hard to bring up with people, watch them squirm and try to exit the conversation. I mean after all, I don’t want people to start running away when they see me coming. 


Back to the foot of the cross I go, to wait for His answer. I pray I hear when He speaks.