Monday, October 31, 2011

Pointing to me.... no HIM!!

I love a good old pat on the back when I've done something good. I love it when people tell me I'm a good person or I do amazing things. It feels good. I want people to look at me and say, "Wow she is an amazing Christian woman!" But... I want them to say that about me and not necessarily about what God is doing in my life. My thoughts keep going back to that verse about the jars of clay... you know, the one I've already done 2 posts about. It's like God wont let me forget it.

But we have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us.
                                                                                                                                 2 Corinthians 4:7

In my last post about this verse I talked about how I no longer wanted to patch up my mistakes but wanted God to shine through all my cracks. The mental image I had was me shoving clay into all my cracks so that it looked like I never struggled with sin, or at least not any of the big sins that would cause people to think badly of me. But by patching up those sins or by acting like they never existed I was blocking out God's shining power and grace. I wasn't letting people see God working in me. I wanted to change that.. and still do.

But now another problem is revealing itself. I want people to see God shinning in me... but for the wrong reasons.  I love saying "Oh it's all God, not me!" unfortunately there are times when I say it so that people see me as super righteous and so Godly! I want them to see God's light shining in me so that I can say "Yep, I let God have control of this, that, and the other thing! Aren't I so amazing and committed?"

The mental image I get from this is me sealing my cracks with a clear glaze. You can still see the crack and God's light shining through.... but now there's a bit of me and my control showing. And now God's light isn't as bright. It's some what muted from the thin layer of me. Is that really what I want? Do I really want to get in God's way? Why am I so focused on being seen and praised? Deep down I know I don't deserve it, I know that God is to be praised for all the goodness in my life. It wasn't me that suddenly developed the formula to let go of anger! It was God working in me and nudging me constantly. But there's still this little part of me that says, "Ya but you let Him in... you let Him work in you right? So don't you deserve a pat on the back?"

This is what I'm really struggling with at the moment... and well for my whole life to be honest. I wish I could tie this post up with a pretty little bow and say, "And that is how I figured out how to be humble and point solely at God and not myself! Much love, Abbey!"  But, I can't. And I'm ok with that. This is yet another place where God is going to move and change me. Yet another glowing spot in my very "cracked" life! I'm excited to see God at work. Please pray for my journey with our Lord. Please pray that He humbles me and awes me with how great He is! I want to be totally sold out for our Savior. I want Him to truly be my Lord. Please pray that i get over myself :)  Watch Him work, not me!

Much Love,

Friday, October 21, 2011

180 Video

Have you ever had trouble explaining why abortion is wrong? Do you feel like you just don't know how to argue it? Have you ever talked to someone who thinks their a good person that deserves to go to Heaven despite the fact that they don't believe in Christ, but just don't know how to explain to them that we are all sinners worthy of hell? If so I would strongly encourage you to watch this 30 min. video. It tackles both issues and really get you thinking! Such a powerful video!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Temporary patches vrs. true change

6For God, who said, "Let light shine out of darkness," has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.
 7But we have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us.
                                                                                                                                 2 Corinthians 4:6-7

Who here loves being imperfect? Who likes having problems, or likes making mistakes? If you said "Me!" you have something wrong with you ;) But seriously, who likes getting things wrong?

I personally can't stand having the wrong answer or looking foolish. I don't like admitting my faults unless it some how benefits me. As today's verse says, we are like jars of clay. The mental image that comes to mind is a clay jar that is thin in some places, cracked in others, and holes in the most inconvenient places.

I don't want to be a cracked jar. I want to be a pretty vase with no holes! So when I struggle with sin I start patching up those holes by telling people what it is I'm doing to fix it. "Just a little extra clay here, and voila! No more hole!"

I want to look good. I want to look like I'm all put together by my own strengths. I'm no weakling! I can change all on my own! Sin? No I don't struggle with that! See I can patch it up!

But when I patch up my own mistakes I'm blocking out God's light. I'm taking all the credit for something that I honestly cannot do on my own. Sure the patches may stay for a while... but after a while they'll just crumble and need new clay.

Maybe being a jar with holes really isn't so bad? Maybe if I allow God to fill them with His light instead of with dark decaying clay change will actually be more permanent?

I need to stop trying to paint this picture of me being perfect and on top of things. I need to admit to my down falls, confess my sin. Allow God to shine through the holes and show everyone that He is in control and that He, not I, is changing me for the better.

Lord take me from this.....

To THIS!!!

Monday, October 17, 2011

Embarking on a new journey

Sometimes God asks you to do things you really don't want to do. Sometimes it's show love to the guy that is constantly picking on you or the lady that is ALWAYS telling you the gory details of her life even though she barely knows you. Other times He asks you to go outside of your comfort zone and witness to a scary mob or confrontational co-worker. And sometimes He asks you to do something that sounds like absolutely NO fun! This is where I am at.
    For the past few weeks I have been doing my devotions at work. I'm always the first one in and I usually get a good 10 min or more to read my Bible study and do some reflection and prayer. I would feel slightly rushed but really it has been good. But lately I have really been feeling a tug on my heart to put God first and foremost. I need to start my day with Him. Not get my daily stuff done and then fit Him into a 10 min. slot at work. I've been noticing how God is always at the back of my mind. I find myself rationalizing, "Well once I get this cleaned up and dinner made I'll get to God. Or maybe I should make sure some other things get done and then I'll get to God." Get to God... shouldn't it be "Ok God I'm yours! Lets do this! And then when you're done with my undivided attention I'll get the day to day stuff done."  I truly feel like God is telling me to put Him first and give Him as much time as He wants, and then He'll help me get what I Need to get done, done. All too often I worry about my house being spotless and thinking I Have to get it cleaned right away. But lately I've been giving my day to the Lord and asking Him to help me focus on the things that need to get done and not worry about the things that don't. If I give Him the control then the important things will get done and the unimportant things can wait until later.... Having Him in control is GREAT!
     So my new journey is to put God first... which means devotions at 5:30 AM. AHHH! I am not a morning person! But that is what devotion is right? To devote your time to God instead of just doing it when it's convinient for you. I am going to change my outlook on devotion and really strive to say thank you to Jesus by putting Him first and foremost everyday and every minute. He knows what is important, He'll make it all work out (though I'm sure He wont zap me with early morning cheer :) I pray that God convicts me and keeps me accountable to having true devotion with Him.

With love,

Friday, October 7, 2011

Lets worship!

Here a few videos of worship songs that I LOVE!!! May God's name be praised and glorified!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

A Love letter from the Lord

My Dearest Abbey,
As My child you are to be patient and kind; you should not envy what others have or can do, nor should you boast upon your possessions or talents; (For everything that you have I gave to you, do not boast as though you did not receive it as a gift.) do not be arrogant or rude for though I am Majestic I regard the lowly, but the haughty I know from afar. Do not insist on your own way; do not be irritable or resentful of those who have wronged you. My daughter, do not rejoice at wrong doing, but rejoice with the truth. Bear all things, believe all things, hope in all things, and, my sweet girl, endure all things. You will have suffering in this world, but take heart my dear, I have overcome the world! Abide in Me, My love! For I am the vine and you are my branch. I will give you the life and energy to produce much fruit! Remember that apart from me you can do nothing. Cling to Me My beautiful child! Hold on to my promises. Know that all things work together for the good of those who love Me! Set your eyes on Me and I promise that the sufferings of this world are not even worth comparing to the glory and joy that I have planned for your homecoming! I love you more than life itself Abbey! Look to the cross and remember My love.

I am ALWAYS with you,
Your Father, Your Savior, and Your Guiding Spirit in One

This started out as me just writing out 1 Corinthians 13:4 with a personal twist. It ended up being a full letter consisting of scripture passages that the Lord placed on my heart. All of the promises and commandments are straight from God's word! I would really encourage you to go back through it and put your name in there, His promises for me are the same for you :)

Scripture references: 1 Corinthians 13:4, 1 Corinthians 4:7, Psalm 138:6, John 16:33, John 15:5, Romans 8:28, Romans 8:18.