Monday, April 27, 2009

PRECIOUS! just precious.

I feel like I'm floating along on a bubble of prayer. I know some of them are my own, but mostly, they're prayers that have been said for me. If you're one of the amazing people who have prayed for me, thank you. THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU. I received the most amazing email from a sweet friend of mine from Grace Fellowship. She told me she'd gone to the prayer center to intercede for me, and while she was praying, a couple prayed over her for me (Prayer makes chains like that. It blows my mind in the best way possible.) Jeremiah 17:7-8 was claimed over me. I DO trust in the Lord, and I AM blessed by my confidence in Him.

Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. Romans 12:12,14

I am commanded in scripture to live as a Christian example to my husband. I believe that this commandment still applies during our divorce. I have been strongly encouraged to continue to bless Denver throughout this process. Subsequently, I have claimed Psalm 112 for him. God began a good work in Denver when he prayed to accept Christ before we were married. God doesn't abandon His works, and thus I believe that he WILL be changed. Not necessarily in time to reconcile with me (although that would be pretty great) but rather in God's time, which is perfect. Every time he says or does something that hurts me, makes my stomach clench, etc, I pray that Psalm over him, inserting his name. God hears and answers the prayers of those who love Him.

Do I miss him every single day? Yes. Do I love him? Absolutely. Is my life over? Not even close. God molds and shapes us through every trial and season of suffering we endure. I know without a doubt that I walk with Christ, so I am being molded and shaped. If I am never as happy as I was ever again in this life, it doesn't make a difference. I mean, OBVIOUSLY I want to be ridiculously happy, but its out of my hands and into hands much larger than my own. So I will wait obediently and pray faithfully.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009


Tonight at Alpha, one of the ministers read cards that the other leader's had written during a prayer time beforehand of words of wisdom from the Holy Spirit. One of them was, "Someone is struggling with a broken heart. I see a picture of a heart shattered into thousands of pieces."

At 2am, I messaged Denver on facebook because an episode of The West Wing we both love was on Bravo. He then informed me that he'd sent me an email earlier but sent it to the wrong address and had just resent it. He informed me that he filed for divorce today and asked me how I wanted to handle service.

On top of that heart warming conversation, I have strep throat.

Jesus, I need you now more than ever.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

heart band-aids?

I love the Lord, because He has heard [and now hears] my voice and my supplications. Because He has inclined His ear to me, therefore I will call upon Him as long as I live. The cords and sorrows of death were around me, and the terrors of Sheol (the place of the dead) had laid hold of me; I suffered anguish and grief. Then I called upon the name of the Lord: O Lord, I beseech You, save my life and deliver me! Gracious is the Lord, and righteous; yes, our God is merciful. The Lord preserves the simple; I was brought low and He helped and saved me. Psalm 116:1-6

I am continually in awe of my own capacity to endure and love. The grass is not greener, and I don't really want your life (unless you drive an Audi, but then I just want your car) and I don't want your pity. I just appreciate your prayers and supplications. Last night was a pretty bad night for me, and I had a pretty nasty panic attack. I was having a hard time even breathing much less praying. Thank you to Dayna and the Spirit for praying for me. When some semblence of calm returned to me, I was able to pray through my tears and, with the help of a ridiculous assortment of medications, eventually got some sleep.

God heard my prayers and those prayers prayed for me, and today I was not in that awful pit that I was in last night. In fact, my heart which was shattered and trampled last night, was restored to the point that I felt chest-bursting happiness for my sweet Cobbs when Eryn messaged me with their amazing news.

I've been wondering for a while when my love was going to run out, when I was going to bottom out and be unable to keep faithfully praying the promises of scripture and loving the people God's blessed me with in my life. God is so good, and I am completely confident that He is living in me because I now know that I will never run out of love. Now, when I will run out of "IN-LOVE" is another matter that only God knows.

Monday, April 13, 2009

the closest thing to a "free lunch"

It's way better than a free lunch. I mean, don't get me wrong, I love a free meal as much as if not more than anyone, but this stuff, well, it's a feeding that lasts longer than the most delicious and satisfying meal ever could. It, in fact, blows that meal to crap. Okay, I have to switch tones now because this is sounding like a commercial and that is decidedly not my intent.

It wasn't so long ago that you were mired in that old stagnant life of sin. You let the world, which doesn't know the first thing about living, tell you how to live. You filled your lungs with polluted unbelief, and then exhaled disobedience. We all did it, all of us doing what we felt like doing, when we felt like doing it, all of us in the same boat. It's a wonder God didn't lose his temper and do away with the whole lot of us. Instead, immense in mercy and with an incredible love, He embraced us. He took our sin-dead lives and made us alive in Christ. He did all this on His own, with no help from us! Then He picked us up and set us down in highest heaven in company with Jesus, our Messiah. Now God has us where He wants us, with all the time in this world and the next to shower grace and kindness upon us in Christ Jesus. Saving is all His idea, and all His work. All we do is trust Him enough to let Him do it. It's God's gift from start to finish! We don't play the major role. If we did, we'd probably go around bragging that we'd done the whole thing! No, we neither make nor save ourselves. God does both the making and saving. He creates each of us by Christ Jesus to join Him in the work He does, the good work He has gotten ready for us to do, work we had better be doing. Ephesians 2:1-10 (The Message)

I love that that right there, in simple terms, is the best part of yesterday. Obviously, the candy is nice, but the fact that we were sin-soaked and obsessed with the world and ourselves, and God MERCIFULLY sent His son to die for us. We don't ever have to be good enough or holy enough or pure enough to be saved. All we have to do is BELIEVE. Have faith! And not even a lot of faith. Nope. Faith the size of a MUSTARD SEED (Matthew 17:20) is all you need. Reading the Bible, going to Bible study or on missions, prayer, etc., is all HIS work that we do to spend time with Him, not work we do to obtain salvation or maintain our places in Heaven.

Our Easter sermon was about imputed righteousness. This is referring to how God made a unilateral covenant with Abraham that He would make him righteous simply because he had faith in God. That covenant was fulfilled for each and every one of us through Christ. It's referenced and quoted in several books of the New Testament, thus it is a big part of the New Covenant. (For those of you who need some background on that, basically the Old Testament and subsequently the Jewish faith is the Old Covenant. Christ coming to die for us was promised in that covenant and so the New Testament and Christianity is the New Covenant.) There were so many things that Jim said, examples of current life that he included, that just blew me away. I mean, a lot of my problems aren't exactly uncommon, and I know that, but I'd been praying extensively about several of them last week so it was good for me to hear them specifically referenced in regards to God's provisions. On the way to church and again after we sang (so right before the message was delivered) I prayed for God to speak to me and keep my heart open to hear His words to me. Well, friends, it OBVIOUSLY worked.

I appreciated the sermon being on imputed righteousness even more because of a scripture I've been praying over Denver for quite some time now. "For the unbelieving husband has been sanctified through his wife," I Corinthians 7:14a Now, I believe that when Denver accepted Christ before we got married, he was sincere and subsequently the Spirit still resides within him, and he is saved because you can't give back salvation, but since he's currently walking around proclaiming himself to be an atheist, it comforts my heart to the deepest parts to be reminded that he is set apart because he is my husband, despite his current view of himself as an unbeliever. [Note: Yes, I know what that entire passage says. Before you cite the rest of the passage and it's message on divorce to me, keep in mind that when I married him, he was a believer. That is all. :-)] The bottom line on that is, it's yet another free gift the Lord gives us out of love and grace. Denver doesn't have to do anything. My faith keeps him sanctified. That's pretty amazing to me, y'all.

It's humbling and empowering all at once. I'm so in awe of God's hugeness.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

evil in the world

Last night, our discussion at Alpha was about how to resist evil. It was awesome to have this topic after the hugeness of our Holy Spirit Weekend (where 4 people - including Sweet Katie - accepted Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior!!) but I came away from this meeting with an general feeling of unrest.

I absolutely believe that satan is real and that there is a tremendous amount of evil in the world. I've seen the evil with my own eyes, and even if I hadn't, it's in the Bible which is 100% truth and God's word to us, so that would be enough for me anyway. I just wanted to get that out there before I wrote about anything else.

Tim Barker was our speaker. He's a pastor here in the Katy/West Houston area as well as the accountability partner of our head pastor Jim Leggett. I have the utmost respect for Jim and thus Tim. I felt like he made some really awesome points, about praying the armor of God on yourself and your loved ones weekly if not daily (the pieces of this armor - the Belt of Truth, the Breastplate of Righteousness, The Gospel Shoes of Peace, the Shield of Faith, the Helmet of Salvation, and the Sword of the Spirit - are outlined in Ephesians 6:10-18). He gave several illustrations about the power of Scripture, and he even offered up a very practical way to defend yourself when you feel satan attacking you (pray for someone who doesn't know Christ. It pisses the devil off BIG TIME. He'd rather leave you alone than risk losing one of his souls).

In our small group, Kevin made a great point. Being aware that there is evil in the world and that satan will try to attack you is kind of like being told that at some point, someone is going to hit you in the face, and you need to be ready for it. No one wants to be hit in the face. It sucks. We also talked about if evil comes from God or from the devil. I personally believe, based on the Job precedent, that evil comes from satan. All of those things that Job endured, losing all of his possessions, his entire family dying, getting nasty boils, etc, were the work of satan, and not God. But his faith was STRENGTHENED. I believe that's the point of it. It's like Dolly Parton (yea, I'm gonna quote her) said, "You can't have a rainbow without any rain." Well, Eve bought the devil's lie in the garden and subsequently, we all get to endure evil in our lives. That's just the reality of it. Here's the part I'm having a hard time wrapping my head around. Kevin and I disagree on this part. He doesn't believe that your circumstances per say are actually evil. I believe that a large portion of circumstances are rooted in evil. For instance, I don't believe that living with my parents, while I'm not happy about it, is evil, but I believe that the choices Denver made that led to me living with my parents are rooted in evil. There will always be exceptions, like getting laid off because the economy is bad, etc, but I don't agree that it's right to say that circumstances aren't really evil. What do you think? Can someone help me understand this one?

In other news, my mom was readmitted to the hospital Sunday night with an infection in her surgical wound. After a tremendous amount of drama, she had a 2nd surgery this morning to clean out the wound and drain it. We're hoping that plus hardcore antibiotics takes care of it, and she makes it home for good soon and starts the recovery process for reals.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Hello from our Alpha retreat!

I love love love my Alpha group. Before the first session, they told us that God puts together the group that He wants together. It's absolutely true. All 4 of the other girls who are in my group and on this retreat are in my room with me right now (Skyleigh is my roommate but Ana, Katie, and Laura are just cool girls hanging out with us) and we're sharing stuff and having a great time. We're having so much fun, in fact, that the people in the room next to us changed rooms because we were laughing so loud.

Earlier today, when I was getting ready to come up here, I was thinking about a statement I heard earlier this week. "Jesus loves you, but He loves everyone." They tried to make it sound like that was a bad thing. That's the point! Jesus loves everyone. He loves every single one of us, regardless of who we are and what we've been and done. We can never be good enough for Him to love us, but He died for us anyway. Just marinate on that.

I'm gonna go have some more bonding time with my girls.