Thursday, December 20, 2007

True Forgiveness........

I have a friend, she is such a blessing to everyone around her. She has been re-sharing her and her husbands testimony with me lately. Just like reading the word, every time you do, you see something new, even though you have read it before. That is usually because we are growing and are at a new place in life, different circumstances etc. As my friend has been sharing different stories and events that took place in their life, their marriage, that brought them to the place they are now, God has truly been opening up my understanding and shining light and encouragment.

I met this friend several years ago when she was invited to church by some other people that I knew. At the time, she and her husband were separated. She got saved at our church and began to walk with the Lord with a passion. She began to pray for her husband who was not saved, and had actually left her for another woman. She had prayed and asked God to bring him home if that was His will, and if not, she knew God would take care of her and her 3 sons somehow. So many details I could share with you, but for the sake of time I won't. Divine appointments, things happening that were miracles because they weren't supposed to happen, etc. At one point, when God brought them back together, her husband called because God had been talking to him and working with him as well. He told his wife, "I have to share some things with you that I have done and you probably are never going to want to have anything to do with me again". She told him, "Who am I to not forgive you, when Jesus already forgave you and me of our sins. Who am I to not allow you to come home when I prayed and asked God to bring you home".

The rest is history, they are serving God together, great witnesses for Him and give their testimony to everyone. They are getting ready to teach a class at their church and God has not only restored them, but like Job, double what they ever had together before. Here is what really jumped out at me and touched my heart and gave me a greater understanding of forgiveness than ever before, God's kind of forgiveness. My friend looked at me after she had shared many of these stories and testimonies about her and her husband and where God has brought them to, she said "True Forgiveness is refusing to ever bring up the past again".

When God brought them back together, they took one opportunity, they talked about what had happened, talked through it, prayed over it, forgave and put it under the blood of Jesus forever. That is the only way the enemy can not use your past against you. I have always been a very forgiving person, but this totally blessed me and took me to a new level when my friend shared this with me. I see the end results, have seen them for several years. I know the testimony, God is a forgiving God and if we are truly being Followers of Christ, who are we to walk in unforgiveness? True Restoration and Reconciliation are manifested through true forgiveness.

Pastor Dave was talking about this on Sunday concerning he and his wife Christy. He said "Marriage is work, don't kid yourself. Your mate will be the person that can take you to the highest high, the mountain top, like no other person in the world can; but, by the same token, they are also the person that can push those buttons quicker than anyone else in the world and make you madder than anything. That is real life, and it is truly work, but it is so worth it". Both my friends and my Pastors have learned to work at it the way God says work at it and they have reaped the wonderful benefits of a blessed, healthy marriage and ministry together for the Lord.........which is my heart. Now my Pastors' who are both 40, are going to have their second child, she is pregnant now, and they have been praying and believing God for that for 11 years! So God's timing is not ours, but He is ALWAYS faithful, usually last minute, but always on time!

I just wanted to share, this really impacted me and touched my heart. May we all walk in true forgiveness, the world will become a different and better place because of it. I love you all...............TAM

Monday, December 17, 2007

Christmas Time, Friends, Jesus

Where would we be now, if Jesus had not come into this world to reconcile us back to God. To save us, heal us, deliver us, pursue us, love us, protect us, correct us.....To Him Be ALL The Glory.

I have some new friends I met at church, Allison, Lauren and Ashley, they are 3 sisters known as Scarlett. Great harmony. They had a Toys for Tots gig at the French Quarter last week and we went out to see them. They were happy to see us there to support them. Clay and RyLee were along for the fun too. There were several acts on before Scarlett. Let's just say.....where was the Gong Show hook when you needed it! It is so funny to listen to musicians 'critique' other musicians. We had a good time and some great laughs.

I also got to go to dinner with some friends. Kevin and Leslie brought my buds Dakota and Garrett. It was great to get together with them and do some Christmas shopping afterwards. I do love the holidays, especially the lights. I have not had a spare moment to drive around and see the Christmas lights, and I do love to do that. Merry Christmas to all of you...........I love you.

Saturday, December 08, 2007

Perfume Model!?

Yes it's true! I have had the opportunity to do some work at Dillard's as a Perfume Model (help sell their Ralph Lauren and Armani Line of Perfumes). It has been interesting for sure. I am working with some great people, but retail is not my thang. Especially standing for all those hours. But it is Christmas time, and shoppers are out, the Christmas music is playing, everything is decorated, so I love being out in it this time of the year! I love you all....let me hear from you!

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Monday, December 03, 2007

The Essence of a Woman

"When we speak about the essence of a woman – her beauty – we don’t mean “the perfect figure.” The beauty of a woman is first a soulish beauty. We know – it’s a harder jump to make. We’ve lived so long under the pressure to be beautiful. But stay with the thought for a moment, because it will really help. The beauty of a woman is first a soulful beauty. And yes, as we live it out, own it, inhabit our beauty, we do become more lovely. More alluring. As the poet Gerard Manley Hopkins wrote, “Self flashes off frame and face.” Our true self becomes reflected in our appearance. But it flows from the inside out.

The essence of a woman is Beauty. She is meant to be the incarnation – our experience in human form – of a Captivating God. A Godwho invites us.

“You have stolen my heart, my sister, my bride; you have stolen my heart
with one glance of your eyes, with one jewel of your necklace.You are a garden fountain, a well of flowing water streaming down from Lebanon.” (Songs 4:9, 15)

Beauty is what the world longs to experience from a woman. We know that – somewhere down deep, we know it to be true. Most of our shame comes from this knowing and feeling that we have failed here. So hear this: Beauty is an essence that dwells inevery woman. It was given to her by God. It was given to you.

Surely you would agree that God is nothing if not beautiful.
All around us God’s creation shouts of his beauty and his goodness. The way snow creates a silhouette of lace on a barren tree, the rays of sun streaming forth from a billowing cloud, the sound of a brook trickling over smooth stones, the form of a woman’s body and the face of a child anticipating the arrival of the ice cream truck all speak of God’s good heart if we will have but the eyes to see. The coming of spring after a hard winter is almost too glorious for a soul to bear. God’s beauty is lavished on the world.

Beauty may be the most powerful thing on earth. Beauty speaks. Beauty invites. Beauty nourishes. Beauty comforts. Beauty inspires. Beauty is transcendent. Beauty draws us to God.

A woman in her glory, a woman of beauty, is a woman who is not striving to become beautiful or worthy or enough. She knows in her quiet centre where God dwells that He finds her beautiful, has deemed her worthy and in him, she is enough. In fact, the only thing getting in the way of our being fully captivating and enjoyed is our hiding and striving.

So Jesus says, “I will quiet you with My love” (Zephaniah 3:17). A woman of true beauty is a woman who in the depths of her soul is at rest; trusting God because she has come to know Him to be worthy of her trust. She exudes a sense of calm; a sense of rest; and invites those around her to rest as well. She speaks comfort; that all is well; that all will be well. A woman of true beauty offers others the grace to be and the room to become. In her presence, one can release the tight sigh that so often grips our hearts, and breathe in the truth that God loves us and he is good.

This is why we must keep asking. Ask Jesus to show you your beauty. Ask him what he thinks of you as a woman. His words to us let us rest. And unveil our beauty." (Captivating , 130-132)
This is just another lesson for us on how much God wants us to rest in Him and truly trust Him.