Birthing Something New

September 26, 2014

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“For the revelation awaits an appointed time; it speaks of the end and will not prove false. Though it linger, wait for it; it will certainly come and will not delay” (Habakkuk 2:3)

“If I have learned one thing in ministry, it is that most God dreams take longer than we think, cost more than we ever thought we would have to pay, and are far more painful to birth than we ever imagined. Nothing great happens overnight.” – Christine Caine 

In this season of life, nothing seems to be more true. Sometimes it’s what I call the “Unbearable Wait” (pun intended). A season of breaking, pushing and pulling, stretching, fighting… and more subtly a season of strengthening, character, faith building and patient endurance.

Like a woman who is expecting, God is trying to birth something out of us, but the process is any thing but quick and easy. In this wait alone, we may grow weary/faint, our faith may turn into fear and doubt, because it seems like this baby (this weighty call/purpose dying to come forth) that God keeps talking about ain’t rearing it’s head anytime soon. Restlessness sets in; so does confusion and all of our flesh cries out GET ME OUT OF HERE! 

This journey in the waiting is a process. Any mother with new life cooking in the oven would prefer a full bake, but ask most pregnant women and they would have at some point during their pregnancy outwardly yelled GET THIS BABY OUT OF ME! way before their last trimester. But we all know what happens when you remove the baby from the womb before it’s appointed time… you get a premature child who may not be able to survive on it’s own or struggles more than they have to. In essence, You abort mission before it’s time of fulfillment and so ,you abort a dream.

If we want the fullness of the promise then we must allow the process to take its full course no matter how uncomfortable it may be. And that’s where we NEED to bring ourselves back to the word of God. I love Psalm 119:50:

This is my comfort in my affliction,
    that your promise gives me life.

Hold on to the promise, the Word of God over your life. It is our comfort in affliction. Our pickles and mayonnaise in times of intense craving for our future to begin so-to-speak. I know… weird metaphor but it kinda works lol.

Quite frankly, I’ve seen more disappointment this year than in many years before. I’ve doubted myself, doubted my dreams, doubted my calling and just about every decision I have made… but I refuse to give up my confession of faith in the promise God has for me. That’s not really by my choice either. God’s grace won’t let me walk away from the promise. When it seems that I’ve lost all hope, He reminds me… through a word, through a friend, through a prayer, through a sign. He won’t let me walk away from that which He has called me to. For that, I am grateful.

A very wise friend of mine wrote this week in her new blog post this week,

“Our waiting, does not, diminish us. It only speaks of something very real, on the way… like a pregnant woman who awaits the birth of her child.. we get more joy in the waiting. It’s coming, and it’s closer.”

So here it is, the Lesson of the day: Learn to wait well. Accept the process. Know that there’s always pain in the process but nothing truly great is birthed without it. You are being shaped, molded, and wonderfully made for the purpose you have been chosen for and called to like a baby in it’s mothers womb. And when the time comes, you will see the vision come to pass before your own eyes. Don’t despise the process. Focus on the joy of what you cannot yet see. Focus on the promise and Wait well.

“A woman does not give birth before she feels the pain;
    she does not give birth to a son before the pain starts.
No one has ever heard of that happening;
    no one has ever seen that happen.
In the same way no one ever saw a country begin in one day;
    no one has ever heard of a new nation beginning in one moment.
But Jerusalem will give birth to her children
    just as soon as she feels the birth pains.
In the same way I will not cause pain
    without allowing something new to be born,” says the Lord.
“If I cause you the pain,
    I will not stop you from giving birth to your new nation,” says your God. 

-Isaiah 66: 7-9

Perception is Everything

August 22, 2014

Our perception is everything.
Everything we face in life will run through the lens of our perceptions and our eyes will judge through them. The way we perceive God affects the way we behave towards Him and respectively, the way we view God will determine the way we view life.
There are so many aspects of God and we are learning Him each day, the way newly weds learn their spouses in a whole new way. With every day, we reach a new intimacy in Him. Our perceptions change. The more we truly seek Him, the more we get past the hurts of our own experiences and we see God for who He truly is.
We no longer compare Him to the failures of mankind, the tragic disappointment of absent fathers, and untrustworthy friends just to name a few. We no longer hold him to the expectations of mere men. We trust in Him because daily He shows Himself to be a loving Father. We rest in Him. We confide in Him. We spend time with Him. We put our faith in Him because day by day He proves Himself to be faithful.
To know the Father. To know of His works through His Son Jesus Christ. When we see everything, not in our own faulty perceptions but in the light of the eternal gospel, that is when we truly take hold of the kingdom and when God will manifest His glory through us.
And to think we can spend an entire lifetime seeking Him out to learn everything about Him and yet never even scratch the surface of His eternal grace and truth. He is a beautiful endless mystery, constantly giving us just enough to keep us enveloped in His wonder.
Our perception of God is everything. Ask Him to continually renew your perception of Him, to reveal Himself to you in a completely new way. Ask Him to reveal Himself as your Father, your Provider, your Comfort and little by little your faulty perceptions of God will be removed like scales from your eyes. Your faith will be strengthened and your intimacy with God will grow.

Love is

August 13, 2014

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Love is not in the business of taking.

It doesn’t wait until you have money to purchase it.

It doesn’t mind waiting for you.

It does not care what you did yesterday.

It does not care what you will do tomorrow.

It loves today. It loves now. It loves free. It loves true.

It allows you to step all over it if only To lift you up a step higher.

It gives. It only gives.

It is never shaken. Not even stirred.

It doesn’t keep you in debt to it.

You owe nothing to it, not even a reason to be loved.

It is completely open.

Defenseless.

Vulnerable.

Love bears all resistance.

[Love] is completely open. Defenseless. Vulnerable. Most days, these are just words and we never take the time to meditate on them. Until that is we find ourselves in a predicament where we are called to love as Jesus loved. I don’t mean loving your mom for giving you birth or loving your friend because she’s your best bud. I mean loving those who are impossible. Loving those who can’t stand the thought of everything you believe in. Loving those who test your patience every minute of the day. Loving those who are closest to you and yet they hurt you, repeatedly. Of course everything in your flesh hates this type of love. The world teaches us to turn our back on these types of people. What do we need these haters for anyways? But what did Jesus teach us?

Every time I enter a cathedral the first thing that catches my attention is the cross at the center of it all. I envision what it was like for Jesus when His own people crucified Him. I imagine all that He had to endure.

And then I envision what I would’ve done on that cross. I would’ve screamed my way all the way to death. I would’ve writhed with anger at the fact that I was guiltlessly being nailed to a cross. I would’ve spat on the guards below me who spat on me and tore my clothes. I would have attempted to protect myself…

The first thing we do when anything is being thrown at us is to protect ourselves, to defend ourselves. We throw up our arms, palms thrusted forward to block whatever is being thrown at us attempting to create some sort of barricade between us and the offender.

Jesus didn’t give himself that choice. He chose to go up on that cross, knowing full well what was about to happen to Him, the pain that He would endure, the torture, the ridicule. All undeserved. Yet He didn’t take himself off the cross. He remained hands nailed at his sides, openly enduring everything that came to Him, taking on the sins of the world, for the sake of the world. 

How my flesh would have hated to endure it all, yet Jesus did. Love… real love is defenseless, vulnerable, open. Taking on all, patiently enduring all.

But if when you do good and suffer for it you endure, this is a gracious thing in the sight of God. For to this you have been called, because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, so that you might follow in his steps. He committed no sin, neither was deceit found in his mouth. When he was reviled, he did not revile in return; when he suffered, he did not threaten, but continued entrusting himself to him who judges justly. He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed. For you were straying like sheep, but have now returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls. 1 Peter 2:23

We are not Jesus, yet we are called to be like Him. To love open, to love defenseless, to love vulnerable. And by His grace we can.

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