Reflections

As I sit here reflecting back on the year that’s about to come to an end and looking forward at the year to come I realize how abundantly blessed I am! God has done so much work in my life this past year and I have grown in more ways than I think I even know. I am so thankful for so many things. That my God loves me enough not to keep me where I am, He is continuously moving me down the path He has set out before me. I have learned to relentlessly pursue Him as He pursues me and this has developed such intimacy that it’s hard to describe. I am deeply and passionately crazy in love with HIM! There are things in my life that I long to have like a healthy real relationship with my siblings and because we all live in different parts of the country it’s hard to do so God has provided me with an over abundance of many siblings right here in Birmingham! He knows and hears the cries of my heart and He answers my prayers. Not always in the ways I want Him to but always in the way that is best for me.

I am thankful for my amazing husband! Although our marriage is not perfect by any means we do intentionally keep God as the center of it all and that is the secret to a strong marriage. When you are both pursuing God together and independently it creates a bond like no other. I am so deeply and madly in love with my sweet Joe. He loves God and pursues Him with a passion that fascinates me. He loves me and the kids with all of his heart and soul and we know it!

I am thankful for my kids, Kaylynne and Dominic! Some days I wonder if God really knew what He was doing trusting me with these precious gifts. They are both pursuing God with everything they have. They are so smart and some days it scares me with the knowledge they have. Especially the knowledge & understanding they have of God already. Childlike faith is really amazing when it’s up close and personal in your own children. Their hearts are so giving, loving and compassionate towards others and even towards each other sometimes. Watching them grow into the young woman and young man of God that they are called to be is truly amazing.

As far as looking at the year ahead the only thing I can say is THE BEST IS YET TO COME!

Modesty

When someone says “modesty” what does it make you think about? Modesty should be practiced by not only females but by males as well. When I think back about the way that I used to dress it makes me sick. Thank goodness that I serve a God who forgives because I did not dress modestly! I tried to show as much as possible whenever possible because I thought that was the way to get noticed. Well, let me tell you, I got noticed but not in the way a woman should want to get noticed that’s for sure! Not only did I get noticed for the wrong reasons but I also ended up with a reputation that matched the way I dressed. When we dress inappropiately it can make others question our character as well. Since I have become a Christ Follower I have had Godly conviction to dress modestly and to help teach others about modesty as well. When getting dressed ask God if HE is pleased with what you are wearing. If you feel like HE would not be pleased with it, change.
Let’s take a look at what scripture says about it.

And I want women to be modest in their appearance. They should wear decent and appropriate clothing and not draw attention to themselves by the way they fix their hair or by wearing gold or pearls or expensive clothes.
1 Timothy 2:9 NLT

When we do not dress appropriately we can be a temptation to others that could cause them to stumble and fall into sin. Have you ever wondered about that? I read an article today that had the statistics of how many people look at porn in the state of Alabama and 3 cities in Alabama that are also known as “religious” states are also listed in the top 10 cities that frequent porn sites. That is very troubleing to me! Porn not only gives a warped vision of what a beautiful godly marriage-bed should be but it also destroys marriages, families, and relationships.

What are we teaching our children when we let them wear things that are inappropriate? What are we teaching them when we let them watch things that are inappropriate? Not to long ago I heard a mom offer her early teanaged son the Victoria’s Secret catalog to look at if he did his homework! What?!? And then people wonder why there is such a problem with porn. Lusting is a sin! Check out these words from Jesus Himself:

“You have heard the commandment that says, ‘You must not commit adultery.’ But I say, anyone who even looks at a woman with lust has already committed adultery with her in his heart. So if your eye—even your good eye —causes you to lust, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell.
Matthew 5:27-29 NLT

Looking at porn or looking at others with lust is the same as having an affair. I truly believe that if we all REALLY believed that God really is omnipresent that we would not do, say, look at or even think most of the things that we do. Omnipresent means that God is EVERYWHERE all of the time. HE hears what we say, HE sees what we wear, HE knows what we look at. WOW! If we really did believe these things and had a healthy fear of our mighty God this world might look very different than it does now.

Fear God, and keep his commands, because this applies to everyone. God will certainly judge everything that is done. This includes every secret thing, whether it is good or bad.
Ecclesiastes 12:13b-14 GWT

Is Giving Up An Option?

Have you ever tried to have a relationship with someone and you tried and tried and still get no response from them? I would imagine that this must be how God feels with the people He pursues and they don’t respond at all.

Think about this: how does God respond to people who don’t respond to Him? How do we respond to the people who don’t respond to us? If we truly are Christ followers we need to think about these questions because we really should be responding the same way God does. He does not give up, He continues to pursue, sometimes quietly and sometimes He hits you right between the eyes with a 2×4. Now I’m not saying we should go around hitting people with 2×4’s either. We should always respond with love and respect. How have you been responding? I know that I have been getting angry and wanting to grab a couple people and just shake them. But guess what? I can’t do that! You know why? Because I can’t change them, only God is capable of changing them. What I can do is give it to Him daily, sometimes minute by minute and wait patiently for God to start with making changes in me first.

God doesn’t want us to have broken, painful relationships with others. We are commanded to love everyone with His love that He puts in our hearts. So, here I am loving my God and waiting patiently for the next thing He asks me to do