May 212017
 

IDENTITY CRISIS!

“I’m aging! Life around me is rapidly changing! Where do I fit? Where do I belong? Even if I do fit to some extent or belong in some ways,  this is not where I’ve always felt most comfortable. I feel out of place, terribly old, and so outdated!”

I was facing a serious identity crisis!

It seemed as though I’d been revisiting the events of this story line more and more frequently. I wasn’t ready to retire from ministry ~ to be placed on a shelf. I believed God wasn’t finished with me yet, but I couldn’t discern if He was changing my part in His body or completely removing me from a place I’d always filled. I felt lost! Unneeded! Useless!

Difficult questions and situations coupled with intense emotions! Add to them equally strong concerns in other areas of my life, and I had the makings of a perfect storm that could cause me to make choices I wasn’t meant to make.

In the middle of all this, one morning God took me to Isaiah 43:19. “See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.” (NIV)

Later that morning, I attended our church’s Women’s Fellowship event on Repurposing. What I had read in the morning was reinforced in the sharing time from God’s Word and in the viewing of ordinary items that had been beautifully repurposed. The next morning, I pondered over what I had seen ~ items more beautiful and of more value than they once had been. They had become useful in new ways. However, the “bones” of these items had not changed. Their basic elements remained the same! Also, their “patina” had not been completely removed. In fact, they were of more value when portions of their luster and sheen had been preserved!

God’s Spirit quietly spoke to my spirit. He was not removing the “bones” that had made up my life work for Him. He wasn’t removing the things that had always been a part of my identity. Instead, my life was being repurposed into other uses while my “bones” remained the same and the luster and sheen of His life in me enhanced.

For Christmas one year, my daughter and son-in-law each “re-purposed” 18″ x 24″ picture frames to give to me as gifts. One became a glass-covered blank calendar, and the other became a message center using chalkboard paint. These gifts have become a wonderful centerpiece in my piano studio. My students’ eyes often seek out what is written there. Both gifts are very unique and useful, as well as beautiful, and treasured because of the two people who fashioned them out of their love for me. 

God has now opened my eyes to see, my ears to hear, my mind to understand, and my heart to receive His “re-purposes” for my life. I can take joy in each change He makes because He is the Master of re-purposing! Will it always be easy? No! The older I get, the more difficult change becomes. However, He loves me and has promised He will never leave me alone. I can trust His heart for me.

If you are in a time of uncertainty as to your place in life, I encourage you to choose to yield to God’s loving hands as they re-purpose your life into a unique and continually useful part of His life on earth. In His skillful hands, your life will become more beautiful, unique, and treasured. You can trust His heart for you

Song of the Day

Trust In You

Verse 1

Letting go of every single dream
I lay each one down at Your feet
Every moment of my wondering
Never changes what You see

Verse 2

I’ve tried to win this war I confess
My hands are weary I need Your rest
Mighty warrior King of the fight
No matter what I face You’re by my side

Chorus

When You don’t move the mountains
I’m needing You to move
When You don’t part the waters
I wish I could walk through
When You don’t give the answers
As I cry out to You
I will trust I will trust
I will trust in You

Verse 3

Truth is You know what tomorrow brings
There’s not a day ahead You have not seen
So in all things be my life and breath
I want what You want Lord and nothing less

Bridge

You are my strength and comfort
You are my steady hand
You are my firm foundation
The Rock on which I stand
Your ways are always higher
Your plans are always good
There’s not a place where I’ll go
You’ve not already stood

Lauren Ashley Daigle | Michael Farren | Paul Mabury

 

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Jan 132017
 

Professional ~ a person who is expert at his or her work[i]

Related imageThat’s me! Oh, don’t misunderstand me; I’m not speaking of my areas of knowledge, skills, or degrees. I’m talking about what a great crastinator I am. I am a professional crastinator, or better known as a PRO-crastinator! I’m a professional at putting things off for later! In fact, I’ve become so adept at it that many times I can finish what needs to be done just as the moment arrives when it MUST be done! Yup, I’m a professional crastinator ~ a pro-crastinator!

Unfortunately, this means I’m usually rushing to accomplish things on time. If I’d started earlier, I would have most likely done a better job instead of sliding in at the last minute barely able to say, “Done!”

This is why when I read Oswald Chambers’ “My Utmost for His Highest” on January 6, I was pulled up short by his use of two words to describe Jesus: “unhasting and unresting.” He was not in a hurry, yet remained steadily being about His Father’s work.

One of my nieces is a prolific writer and frequently uses the words STEADY ON! I think that describes Jesus. I long to be more and more like Him, to be more and more conformed into His image. Because this is my heart’s desire, I am asking Him to help me break the habit of procrastinating and to move through each day both “unhasting and unresting” ~ steady on ~ until it’s time to put my head on my pillow each night and let my body rest.

Father, I desire to be like Jesus ~ unhasting and unresting ~ steady on as I go about doing the tasks You have given me to do each day. I don’t want to abuse the time I have been allotted on this earth; instead, I yearn to wisely use the time You have given me in the number of days I have remaining. You are the One who is at work in meboth to will and to do” of Your good pleasure (Philippians 2:13 KJV). You and I both know full well how weak I am. I need not only Your strength to accomplish Your will, I also need You to provide the “will” or the desire to do so. Please fill me with Your strength that I might bring You honor. Thank You! \o/ ~ Amen.  

[i] Dictionary.com

 

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Nov 032016
 

motorhome-campingDon’t Park It and Put a House Number on It

She thought something sounded wrong as she played her piano piece for me, so she stopped playing and looked at the music with a puzzled expression. She went back to the beginning and started once again, and once again she paused at the same place. It just sounded wrong. Well, it was! She was making the same mistake yet again. With a big sigh, she started over one more time. As she approached the troubling section, she slowed to another stop. At that point I said, “Don’t park it and put a house number on it! Just keep going!”

It’s an old saying, which makes sense, because I am old! It is related to traveling in a motor home. Motor homes weren’t originally meant to be permanent homes. They were meant to travel to a location and then move on. My idiomatic expression was simply aimed at getting her to keep going and not take up permanent residence at that mistake! She made a mistake…so don’t sit and dwell on it, keep moving on!

Isn’t that like us in life? We make mistakes, do things wrong, mess up! We find ourselves eventually living there at the site of the wrongdoing. We become immersed in the “shoulda, coulda, woulda” instead of simply doing our best to make amends and then moving on. I know this because I am a professional at making mistakes and messes! I am also an expert at living there!

I think our mistakes and messes can and should be corrected and cleaned up to the best of our ability; however, there are some we just can’t fix at all. It would make things worse to even try. All we can do is sincerely apologize and move on. Still, it is more harmful to park our lives there and take up permanent residence. “Park it and put a house number on it” if you will.

After my student finished playing the song for me, we went over the steps of how she could keep from making that mistake again. It requires looking closely at that place in the music and slowly playing it right a few times. From that time on, they will most likely not make the same mistake again.

It is important to note that sometimes what has been played in the music is not an error; instead, it is a planned moment of dissonance the composer has placed there so that when the dissonance resolves, there is a sigh of joy and relief.

The same is true in life. There are times when discord and distress are present creating seasons of stress. At those times, we must keep moving forward to the best of our ability, asking God for the necessary strength and wisdom to continue and reminding ourselves frequently that at some point it will resolve.

I am aware that this may seem like a very simplistic approach to the deep place you are going through. I don’t mean to minimalize it or give thoughtlessly simple words with which to face it. God knows I have walked through enough of my own seasons of distress and will face more before my journey here is done, to not take lightly the things people face. Nevertheless, I want to encourage you to grasp the truth that whatever you are facing will pass. If not here, then when you see Jesus face to face. Be encouraged by that promise! Lift up your eyes to focus on the One who will see you through.

Prayer:

Father, I make frequent mistakes and am prone to live there. Show me how You would have me to approach them and move on. And at the times when my life is going through a season of discord and distress, provide the strength, wisdom, and encouragement I need to stay close to You as You lead the way. Thank You. Amen.

Song for the Day:

Precious Lord, Take My Hand

Precious Lord, take my hand,
Lead me on, let me stand,
I am tired, I am weak, I am worn;
Through the storm, through the night,
Lead me on to the light:

Refrain

Take my hand, precious Lord,
Lead me home.

When my way grows drear,
Precious Lord, linger near,
When my life is almost gone,
Hear my cry, hear my call,
Hold my hand lest I fall:

Refrain

When the darkness appears
And the night draws near,
And the day is past and gone,
At the river I stand,
Guide my feet, hold my hand:

Refrain

 

 

 

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Oct 272016
 

I Can’t See You! Where Are You?

I love walking with a companion! I especially love walking with a companion when the sun is shining on our path and we are engaging in open and heartfelt conversation. I don’t mind walking and talking if the sunshine is sometimes filtered through the trees casting shadows on the pathway ahead of us or if the way is a bit rocky. I just need to be able to see clearly where we are going. I don’t even mind walking with someone when the rain is coming down so long as there is light to see the way. However, I do NOT like walking in the dark, and I really don’t like walking in the dark alone! If there is very little or no light to see, I begin to panic! I slow down and begin to feel around me for anything to give me guidance or keep me from getting hurt by what I can’t see!

When Jesus came into my dark room and changed it to a place filled with light, He took me by the hand and we began to walk together again. I love walking with Him! “He walks with me and He talks with me and tells me I am His own.” (In The Garden)

In our life together, our conversations are sometimes filled with fun and enjoyable things. Sometimes we talk about matters that are not as pleasant, and at other times our exchanges are so very deep and even disturbing. Those topics are often about what lies in me that needs to change, but they are also about issues that surround my life, my family, my friends, my nation, and the world. Because He is walking with me during these talks, His light not only shines on the path ahead of us but also shows me His heart in these concerns. Sweet fellowship!

However, I am so human and have a bit of ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder). I am easily distracted by what I see around me, and sometimes I am not paying very close attention; I begin to slow my pace, and the distance between us increases. If that continues over any period of time at all, the light where I am gets dimmer and dimmer until I’m walking in near darkness again.

When darkness comes slowly, I sometimes don’t realize it has gotten darker because my eyes are slowly adjusting to the light level. When I do realize that it is getting dark and will admit I am walking in less of Jesus’ light, then comes that period of time when I don’t want to admit to Him or to myself that I’ve lost sight of Him. I may try on my own to hurry and catch up, but if I am far behind, I am not sure which way He went. I lose my way and at times get hurt as I stumble and even fall. At that point, because I feel ashamed for having lost track of Him, I may sit and cry because I’m scared and angry with myself for not paying closer attention.

In the dimness, my enemy is there whispering in my ear — “Face it, you’re a failure! You can’t keep up! He’s tired of coming back to get you! Give it up! You’re never gonna get it right! Never!”

Now, I can choose to stay there agreeing with the thoughts and feelings that are bombarding me, berating myself for falling behind, or feeling sorry for myself, and there have been numerous times when that is exactly what I have done, or I can choose to call out to Him! “Jesus, I’ve lost sight of You! Where are You? I need You!” 

He has never failed to respond to my pleas for help! Not once! The truth is He has never left my side and never will; I have simply looked away from Him and begun to focus on other things. Those other things can be all the shadows and difficulties around me, but they can also include His blessings and provisions. Instead of remaining attentive to Him and what He is saying to me, my attention is pulled away. 

I’m so very thankful that he knows me well and allows for my weaknesses and failings! His love has never failed me, and it never will! 

Where are you right now? Are you walking in His light and in sweet friendship with Him? Can you clearly see His path before you or have you lost your way? If you are lost, alone, and in a dark place, call out to Jesus! He will hear you, and He will always respond! Just as the father, in the story Jesus told of the prodigal son (Luke 15:11-32), was watching for his son to return, God is watching and waiting for you! Just as that father ran to embrace his son, God will run to embrace you!

Prayer

Jesus, I am lost! I cannot find my way. Please, let me see You; let me know You are here! I’m sorry for letting other things draw me away from You. Please, forgive me! I need Your love, mercy, and grace! I need YOU! Shine Your light in my life, and let me see Your way once again. Thank You! Amen.

Song of the Day

  1. When we walk with the Lord in the light of His Word,
    What a glory He sheds on our way!
    While we do His good will, He abides with us still,
    And with all who will trust and obey.

    • Refrain:
      Trust and obey, for there’s no other way
      To be happy in Jesus, but to trust and obey.
  2. Not a shadow can rise, not a cloud in the skies,
    But His smile quickly drives it away;
    Not a doubt or a fear, not a sigh or a tear,
    Can abide while we trust and obey.
  3. Not a burden we bear, not a sorrow we share,
    But our toil He doth richly repay;
    Not a grief or a loss, not a frown or a cross,
    But is blessed if we trust and obey.
  4. But we never can prove the delights of His love
    Until all on the altar we lay;
    For the favor He shows, for the joy He bestows,
    Are for them who will trust and obey.
  5. Then in fellowship sweet we will sit at His feet,
    Or we’ll walk by His side in the way;
    What He says we will do, where He sends we will go;
    Never fear, only trust and obey.

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Oct 202016
 

The Dark Room ~ Part 3

It’s been many years since I first acknowledged the dark room of my life; in fact, it’s been just over 31 years ago. As the years have passed, I’ve understood more and more about the work that needed to be done in that place inside of me, work that is still going on. However, I look back at my journal writing in the summer of 1985 and realize that God showed me so much the day I wrote that entry. I am often surprised at what shows up on a page as I write! Words, concepts, and understanding seem to flow from my pen without forethought on my part. That’s when I come to understand that God’s Spirit is at work.

From my journal, August 23, 1985:

“Father, I know You and I are still in my room working, but the majority of work in cleaning that room has already been done. Now it’s mostly You showing me where the new items go that are just coming into my room. …it took the light going on in order to begin the massive cleaning job that needed to be done. You can’t clean in a dark room and have it clean. It was dark in there because I was not following You, Jesus; I was following the enemy. I can almost see the picture — Jesus is glowing in front of me and I can clearly see Him and everything around me. I am able to identify and describe in detail everything I see because His light is so bright, and I am following Him.”

It is in His light that He and I are able to work through all those things that accumulate in my life over time. Some of those items belong in my life ~ blessings, difficulties, pain, healing, grief, joy. When I’m not following God’s leading, I may place those things in the wrong place, and they can then become stumbling blocks instead of building blocks. Staying close to Him is essential in keeping my life in order.

Some of those pieces should not have a place in my life at all ~ sin, selfishness, unforgiveness, hatred. They become obstructions ~ things that hinder my growth and become barriers between my Savior and me and between myself and those I love. Those things must be thrown out! In fact, in this life long process, there are things that must be discarded before they even have a chance to enter my life. These are the items to which I must say a resounding “NO!” when they approach my mind and heart. Learning to say no is not easy! Nevertheless, it is a discipline I must allow God’s Spirit to develop in me.

The process of organizing all that belongs within me is lifelong. It is absolutely crucial that I stay very close to Jesus so I can clearly see things from His perspective. He alone knows what should stay and what should go. He alone knows where each thing belongs and can direct me as to where to put it. Is it essential? It needs to be in a prominent place. Is it important but not essential? Then it belongs very nearby. Is it good but not necessary? Then its placement can be in a less noticeable position in me.

Have you ever experienced working with God to clean up your life, messes you’ve made, hurts that have influenced your life even today, or things that are simply out of their correct place in you? I would love to hear your story!

Do you need God to come into your dark room and begin the process of cleaning that place and reorganizing it? Let me know, and I will pray for you!

My prayer is that you will allow God to draw you to Himself and let Him do the work in you that needs to be done.

Prayer

God, my life is a mess! Everything is out of order, and I need Your help! Please come in and clean the places in me that need  cleaning and reorganizing. Make the changes in me that need to be made, throwing out some things, and placing others in their rightful and good place in my life. Thank You! Amen.

Song of the Day

Clean Before My Lord

Chorus

Clean before my Lord I stand
And in me not one blemish does He see
When I placed all my burdens on Him
He washed them all from me

Verse 1

Why did I wait so long to learn
Such a living song
And how could I stay so close
Without seeing Him
Never seeing Him

Verse 2

Why do you wait so long to learn
Such a living song
And how can you stay so close
Without seeing Him
Never seeing Him

Nancy Honeytree © 1973 Word Music, LLC (a div. of Word Music Group, Inc.)

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Oct 132016
 

The Dark Room ~ Part 2

In The Dark Room Part 1, I wrote about the dark place that was holding me prisoner. When I cried out to God for help, He answered me! The light came on, and the Light of the World, Jesus Christ, stepped into my dark place, shining His light into every unlit corner. When the light came on, I could see all those things that had been hurting me. I was easily able to identify a number of them. They carried labels regarding the man who molested me as a child, the pain of rejection when the one I loved and thought I would marry decided someone else was a lot better than me, my weaknesses and failures, and the constant barrage of negative thoughts about myself as compared to others. There were some that I couldn’t put a label on. Those I had to ask Jesus to explain to me. One by one He picked them up. We looked at them together, and I heard HIS view of each one of them. He shared His Word with me to show me ways to deal with each one of them HIS way. Little by little we worked together in my room. There was no time pressure ~ no need to hurry our way through. I came to understand that Jesus would NEVER leave me to deal with anything on my own. I also began to understand that this was a lifelong process we were engaged in. I could trust Him to stay with me through it all until the day He called me Home!

I can’t adequately describe for you the freedom that came to me when I allowed Jesus to enter my “secret” dark place. It wasn’t a secret to Him. Nothing is! I can only say that I was trapped and in bondage, and He came and set me free!

If you are in a dark place in your life longing to be free of the darkness, and you need the healing Light of the World, Jesus Christ, to shine on the prison you are in, cry out to Him for help! Cry loud and long! He will come! Allow Him to begin the process of restoring and healing your life.

If you are in the process of allowing Christ to heal you, and you are discouraged by how long the process is taking, if it feels as though you’re making no progress at all, I want to encourage you that though the process is lengthy, life-long to be exact, results are already evident! Some healing has already taken place! Sometimes the results may not be visible to you, but He sees the progress that’s been made, and He’s not giving up on you! He’s still working on you! Don’t give up on His work in you, and don’t give up on yourself!

Prayer:

Jesus, help me! I cry out to you for help! Please bring Your light to my dark places and do whatever it takes to bring me to health and wholeness in You. Give me the strength I need to persevere in this life-long adventure of becoming all You mean for me to be. Cut away what holds me back, remove all that will steal my life from You, and show me what You want me to do with each part of my life. Thank You! Amen.

Song of the Today:

He’s Still Working on Me

He’s still working on me to make me what I ought to be.
It took Him just a week to make the moon and stars,
The sun and the earth and Jupiter and Mars.
How loving and patient He must be, He’s still working on me.
1. There really ought to be a sign upon my heart,
Don’t judge her yet, there’s an unfinished part.
But I’ll be perfect just according to His plan
Fashioned by the Master’s loving hands.
2. In the mirror of His Word reflections that I see
Make me wonder why He never gave up on me.
He loves me as I am and helps me when I pray
Remember He’s the Potter, I’m the clay.
Joel Hemphill
© 1980 Bridge Building Music, Inc. (Admin. by Brentwood-Benson Music Publishing, Inc.)
Family & Friends Music (Admin. by Brentwood-Benson Music Publishing, Inc.)
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Aug 262016
 

The Dark Room ~ Part 1

Pitch black! I can’t see anything! I am surrounded by objects; I can feel them, but my eyes can’t them make out. I try to feel my way around hoping to find a lamp or a switch, but there is no room to move without stumbling over something or bumping into an obstacle, many of which are so painful! I don’t even remember what they are. I am trapped!

I have a room in my house that is like this. I dread going into it, and I keep the door closed when others come to visit. It is not totally dark as described above, but it is not a room with much natural light. It is filled with all the things I don’t want to deal with at the moment, don’t know what to do with, or don’t have time to attend to but need to have out of my way.

It is a room that exemplifies a comment made by my former pastor, Jack Aiken, when I was on staff at Kings Way Assembly of God in Eagle River, Alaska. He said, “You’re the best pilot I know! Pile it here, and pile it there!” We all laughed at the comment and the intended pun; however, he was spot on with his description. In my busyness, I would run into my office, drop a pile of music on the floor, grab another stack, and run back out.

My room here at home is a slightly larger version of my office at the church. Most of the items simply need to be discarded and hauled out as trash, while others need my attention. I must decide what place they should have in my room, my home, my life ~ keep it, organize it, give it away! What will it be? Can you identify with me on this?

Well, this is also my life! There’s a hidden dark place in me that I don’t easily let others visit because it is filled with piles of issues that are messy. Most of them simply need to be discarded and hauled out as trash, while others need my attention. I must decide what place they should have in my “room” ~ my life. Keep it, organize it, give it away? What will it be? I am often fearful that if someone should “see” my dark room, they would reject me or judge me.

On August 23, 2016, I wrote about this dark room. The verse that prompted me to write about it can be found in John 8:12

“I am the light of the world: he that follows me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.”

When I wrote the entry in my journal, I had ended up spending frightening time in a dark room in my soul.  This was my life. In the darkness and fear that wrapped itself around me, I cried out for help! In that moment the light came on. It was then that I could see what was holding me captive. It was also then that I saw Jesus standing at the open door! At that moment, my life changed, and I would never be the same again!

My Prayer:

Father, I experienced darkness as I had never experienced it before! Then You came through Your Son, Jesus Christ, and bathed me in Your light! Now I live in Your light as never before. With Your help, I will never return; I will continue to live and to walk in Your light! ~ Amen

Song of the Day:

“I Will Never Be (feat. Darlene Zschech)” by Hillsong Worship

I will never be the same again,
I can never return, I’ve closed the door.
I will walk apart, I’ll run the race
And I will never be the same again.

Fall like fire, soak like rain,
Flow like mighty waters, again and again.
Sweep away the darkness, burn away the chaff,
And let a flame burn to glorify Your name.

There are higher heights, there are deeper seas,
Whatever you need to do, Lord do in me.
The Glory of God fills my life,
And I will never be the same again.

Fall like fire, soak like rain,
Flow like mighty waters, again and again.
Sweep away the darkness, burn away the chaff,
And let a flame burn to glorify Your name.

I will never be the same again,
I can never return, I’ve closed the door.
I will walk the path, I will run the race
And I will never be the same again.

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Aug 262016
 

A Song For You

Tonight I simply want to share a song with you that is one of my current favorites. I use it frequently in my private worship time. I am always comforted by the many names by which my Father is known. May this song bring comfort to you as well.

I apologize in advance. I can’t figure out how to make it a smaller size for viewing, but I’ve provided the lyrics. Hopefully, that will help!

The Names of God by Laurel Hubick

Elohim, the Creator
Jehovah-Shammah, the Lord is There
My Master, Adonai
El Elyon, the God Most High
Yhwh, You Are the Lord
Jehovah-Rohi, My Shepherd
Mekaddishkem sanctifies you
The Lord our Righteousness, Jehovah-Tsidkenu
Worthy is Your Name; Worthy of all my praise

El Roi, the God Who Sees
You are My Banner, Jehovah-Nissi
The All Sufficient One, El Shaddai
Jehovah-Jireh, You Will Provide
Rapha, the Lord Who Heals
Shalom, you are my Peace
The Lord of Hosts, Jehovah-Sabbaoth
El Olam, the Everlasting God
Worthy is Your Name; Worthy of all my praise

 

 

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Aug 242016
 

Old HouseYou Are Not Your Body

“You are NOT your body, but you do take it with you everywhere you go!”

The words spoken by my pastor stunned me! They turned my perspective in a completely new direction. I look in the mirror and assume that what I see is ME. But it isn’t! It is simply the “house” I live in, or as Paul put it, “the earthly tent” I live in. (2 Cor. 5:1) It is what houses the real me. Janie cannot be seen with human eyes; she can only be known to others through what comes out of her life, but God sees her!

In my journal on August 20, 1985, the verse that captured my attention was John 6:63.

“It is the spirit that quickens; the flesh profits nothing: the words that I speak to you, they are spirit and they are life.”

In my journal I wrote:

Father, the flesh is of no help at all; it’s the spirit that makes me alive, and Jesus said that His words are spirit and so His words make me alive. That’s why I must live in Your Word and let Your Word live in me for that is my life source. That’s funny, I always thought my body is what makes me alive, but when my body dies, I will still be alive because I am a spirit, and the spirit is what makes the body alive.

This body will one day cease to live, but it is only the house Janie lives in. The day I take my final breath here on earth, I will take my first breath in Heaven! My body will no longer hold me because I am NOT by body; I will finally be set free from this “tent” I live in, and my spirit will soar in worship of the One who sees the real me ~ the One who made me, knows me, and sees me!

My Prayer:

Father, I look forward to the day when my body will no longer be necessary. I will stand bow before You without its constraints. Until that day, may the words you speak be spirit and life to me and may You be seen in me! ~ Amen

Song of the Day:

“This Old House” as sung by George Younce and the Cathedrals Quartet

 

 

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Aug 232016
 

Less of Me

I look in the mirror and think to myself, “I wish there were less of me!” My chosen lifestyle and eating habits have created MORE of me. So many regrets!

In my journal on August 17, 1985, I chose to record this verse from the Gospel of John.
“He must increase but I must decrease.” John 3:30

John wasn’t talking about his body; he was writing about “self” and his deep desire for Jesus Christ to be ever increasing in him. This meant he must make room for more of Christ by removing his own desires and ways.

I love this statement by John! I can hear his heart in his words, the longing to be filled with God and His Spirit! He understood that it was necessary for self to decrease so that Christ could increase in him.

In order for Christ to increase in me, Janie must decrease! No matter how much I may long to have more of God in my life, it will not happen until I let go of me! And that, my friend, is where the line is drawn. Am I willing to relinquish my own ways so that His ways become my ways? Am I ready to lay down this life I live so as to make room in me for all of Him that I can possibly possess?

I am a very self-centered person, and I know I am not alone in this! I constantly struggle against the “it’s all about me” mentality. I battle to keep my mind on my Heavenly Father in our quiet time together! I fight to keep my attention on those around me as we talk rather than on what I want to say next.

I long to belong totally to God ~ totally surrendered ~ completely filled with Him until when people look at me, they don’t see me, they see God. If that could happen, then when there is a part of me they do see, it would be obvious that without Him I am nothing!

Singer, Larnelle Harris, wrote and sang the song “Greater Still.” He nailed it with the lyrics.

A vessel filled with only me
Is no good to You
For our heart can be
No more than what’s inside
The only thing I really need
Only You can do
So purge my heart
‘Til only You abide

I must become less so much less
That You become greater still
Lord empty me of anything
That keeps me from what’s real
For only thru my weakness
Can Your power be fulfilled
Lord I want to become so much less
That You become greater still

My Prayer:

More of You and less of me. That’s what I want in me. Oh, Abba, I long to be totally Yours and completely filled with You and Your Spirit. Please show me anything that would reside in me that is not of You, and give me the strength to deny it in exchange for more of You.  ~ Amen

Song of the Day:

“Greater Still” by Larnelle Harris

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