Wednesday, October 31, 2007

You Have What It Takes

The armies of Israel have drawn up against the armies of the Philistines, but not a single shot has been fired from any bow. The reason, of course, is Goliath, a mercenary of tremendous size and strength, renowned for his skill in combat. He’s killed many men bare-handed, and no one wants to be next. David is barely a teen when he goes to the camp and sees what is going on. He offers to fight the giant, at which point he is brought before the king, who in turn attempts to dissuade the lad. Saul says, “You are not able to go out against this Philistine and fight him; you are only a boy, and he has been a fighting man from his youth” (1 Sam. 17:33 NIV). Sound advice, the likes of which I wager any of us would offer under the same circumstances. David replies:

Your servant has been keeping his father’s sheep. When a lion or a bear came and carried off a sheep from the flock, I went after it, struck it, and rescued the sheep from its mouth. When it turned on me, I seized it by its hair, struck it and killed it. Your servant has killed both the lion and the bear; this uncircumcised Philistine will be like one of them, because he has defied the armies of the living God. The LORD who delivered me from the paw of the lion and the paw of the bear will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine. (verses 34–37 NIV)

Being a shepherd David learned lessons here that would carry him the rest of his life. The life of the shepherd was not a sweet little life with lambs around. It was a hard job, out in the field, months camping out in the wild on your own. And it had its effect. There is a settled confidence in the boy—he knows he has what it takes. But it is not an arrogance—he knows that God has been with him. He will charge Goliath, and take his best shot, trusting God will do the rest. That “knowing” is what we are after and it only comes through experience. And may I also point out that the experiences David speaks of here were physical in nature, they were dangerous, and they required courage. (The Way of The Wild Heart 83, 84)

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

The Eagles Nest

Have you ever heard the story of the Eagles nest? The eagles build their nests high up in the rocks so predators can't get to it. It's a large nest for her young eagles, made of strong branches, sticks etc. She lines it with everything soft that she can find, leaves, grass, feathers. She feeds them day after day, and they grow day after day, larger and larger until the nest starts to get too small. But at the appointed time, when the eagles are almost ready to fly, the mother eagle starts removing day by day, little by little the feathers, the leaves, the grass. Every day the nest becomes a little more uncomfortable, it becomes harder and harder to find a soft spot without branches and sticks poking, hurting. Then one day, every bit of softness, comfort and warmth is totally removed from the nest. It has become so uncomfortable for the small eagles, that they can't stand it anymore and one by one they go to the edge of the nest, and jump. They fly for the first time and it is a glorious thing.

We all have different times in our life when we are in the eagles nest. It does not mean we are still a baby follower of Christ, it does mean we are growing, learning and being taught, being prepared for that new thing, new area in our life God is taking us, has been preparing for us. See the small eagles had to take a risk, had to get out of the most uncomfortable place in their life, in order to soar to new heights. God is the same way with us. We get comfortable where we are, the box or nest we have created, but a life without risk, as I have said before, is no life at all. It takes courage to step up to the edge of the nest and jump. It is scary indeed, but, sometimes in order to get that breakthrough, in order to soar to the higher places God has for us, we have to do it scared. Going back into that nest, and trying to sit, trying to get comfortable, trying to keep the status quo has become unbearable. I know, because this is where I am. It has become so extremely uncomfortable that I have to move, I have to step to the edge of the nest, take risk, and jump. Only then can I soar into everthing God has planned for me. Only then can I be the most effective for Him and for His glory. To stay where I am is miserable. Yea, I know, this can make you very vulnerable, but when you have given it all up, laid down everything you know at Jesus feet and said "Lord Here I am, whatever you want me to do, wherever you want me to go, I'm totally yours" then He can bring about His plan, His best for you.

This past year God has been preparing me, growing me, showing me things like never before. Giving me glimpses of His plans, molding me, shaping me, making me into a new person. I have been through places I have not been before, had to do things like I have never had to do before, learned things that I had never learned before. It has been at times very hard, very difficult and at the same time glorious, revelational and humbling; but, He has never failed to encourage me, confirm His word and His plan over and over again. So here we are, on the brink, ready to jump, ready to soar.......scared and anxious at the same time. To be continued.......................

Friday, October 12, 2007

By the Lake

This past Sunday afternoon, after all of the craziness of wedding preparations and tear down I just wanted to get away by the lake and relax, journal some, read some and just talk to the Lord. It was a perfect day for that. We had our last major summer blast with temps around 90 degrees. I have often retreated to this place by the lake because it brings such peace. There is something about the water. I know that I want to someday have a home by the lake, with lots of windows facing the lake and a big deck to just sit out there and take it all in, the beauty the awesomeness of God......maybe throw in a hot tub on the deck for good measure :)

Thursday, October 11, 2007

"I'm Not Here"

Wow.....this is so true. This is exactly what a friend taught a series on....Strategies of the Enemy. We are only deceiving ourselves if we think the devil does not exist. He is the real enemy, not people. There is a real battle raging, and as the word tells us, we have to put on the whole armour of God, As I put on myspace a while back, pull out our sword and face the enemy. We don't have the luxery of backing down, turning our backs on him, we have to stand....Praise God the battle is His......but.....we do have to show up! The great news is we are stronger together than we are alone. Ecclesiastes 4:12 Though one may be overpowered by another, two can withstand him. And a threefold cord is not quickly broken.

"Incredible. What a self-indictment. “Nothing dangerous is happening here.” Those men have already been taken out because they’ve swallowed the Enemy’s first line of attack: “I’m not here—this is all just you.” You can’t fight a battle you don’t think exists. This is right out of The Screwtape Letters, where Lewis has the old devil instruct his apprentice in this very matter:

My dear Wormwood, I wonder you should ask me whether it is essential to keep the patient in ignorance of your own existence. That question, at least for the present phase of the struggle, has been answered for us by the High Command. Our policy, for the moment, is to conceal ourselves.

As for those who want to be dangerous (cutting-edge), take a close look at 1 Peter 5:8–9: “Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kind of sufferings.”

What is the Holy Spirit, through Peter, assuming about your life? That you are under spiritual attack. This is not a passage about nonbelievers; he’s talking about “your brethren.” Peter takes it for granted that every believer is under some sort of unseen assault. And what does he insist you do? Resist the devil. Fight back, take a stand." (Wild At Heart , 159, 160)

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Jenni Got Married

Well, she did it! Jenni and Ryan got married yesterday! It was a day of celebration for sure. She has waited a long time for this and we were there to help them both celebrate the day at the cute little chapel in White House. Ryan is from Texas so a lot of his family was in as well as Jenni's family from Kentucky. They really do make a wonderful couple and it is a great story of how God can bring two people together in a way you would not expect. Enjoy the pics from the reception. Love you Jenni!