Anyone who knows me, who truly knows me, knows that I love to worship. There’s a safety, a peace, a comfort that I find in being in the presence of God through worship that is unknown to me in any other place. I find that I’m the happiest when I’m fully enthralled in the presence of God. It’s truly an amazing feeling. But over the last couple years things have changed. That part of my soul that lived to be in the presence of God was suppressed to the point of nearly being dead.
When I lived in New Orleans I went to a church that was extremely charismatic and worship centered. Seeing people dropped to their knees fully engulfed in the presence of God was an every Sunday occurrence. It was beautiful. Being free to worship without fear of being judged or criticized was an amazing feeling. Then I got laid off and had to move back to my hometown and leave the church that I loved so much. I was back in my hometown and back in that country baptist church where worship meant clapping along as the choir sang or if the choir was really doing their thang, you could stand.
So I suppressed my desire to be free in worship. I didn’t stand, I didn’t lift my hands, I didn’t sing along, I just sat there. I didn’t want them to see that side of me. If they did what would they think? What if I got so caught up in worship that I started speaking in tongues, which happened regularly. Would they think I was crazy? Probably. So I stopped worshiping. I just sat there service after service burying my worship further and further inside. I let what I thought others would think become more meaningful to me than being in the presence of The Almighty and soon this carried over to my personal worship time. Worship songs still moved me. Lyrics still had an impact on me, but I was no longer able to worship freely.
Over the past couple days something has changed. I feel that suppressed part of me resurfacing. The longer to be in the presence of God has become so strong I could no longer ignore it. It’s like that ex you had that you didn’t officially break up with, but just stopped calling who suddenly shows up at your house refusing to be ignored. It’s beckoning me. It’s waking me up in the middle of the night wanting me to spend time with it. It’s tired of me ignoring it and trying to bury it again whenever it attempts to resurface and I’m tired of bondage not letting it be free has created. So I’m letting it back out. I’m apologizing to God for letting my self-consciousness come before him. So far this has translated to my personal worship time, which is increasing more and more. Will I feel that same desire publicly, I’m not sure, but if I do, I refuse to suppress it. My passion and desire for God and being in His presence once again means more to me than my insecurities and care for what people think of me. So yeah, I’m gonna sing and wave my hands like a crazy person, and cry, and speak in tongues, and let myself get so caught up in the presence of God that I have no knowledge of what’s going on around me. I’m gonna be free. #DealWithIt
For the majority of my life I’ve treated God poorly. I’ve been treating him like a personal genie. Like an entity who’s only purpose was to do what I wanted and to make my life better. I’ve used God like an omnipotent bodyguard set to do my bidding. I’ve treated God like his purpose was to serve me! Man did I have it twisted. I’ve been acting like a spoiled child kicking and screaming until she gets what she wants. Giving God the silent treatment because he’s not doing what I want or move at my pace. I’ve been acting like the whole world revolves around me. Like I’m God and He is my servant. I’ve been consumed in a world of pridefulness. Instead of thanking him for be so gracious as to give me life, I’ve been wanting more more more. My will be done.
I owe God an apology. God is not my personal genie. He is the creator of the universe. Everything that exists, exists because of and for Him. If I never existed the Earth would still spin. Instead of saying “God give me more.” I should be saying “God, Thank you for all you’ve done.”
So, God, I’m sorry. I’m sorry for treating you like a servant. I’m sorry for behaving like the world revolves around me and not you. I’m sorry for behaving as if giving me life and giving your Son for me what not enough. I’m sorry for behaving like a spoiled brat. I’m sorry for being prideful. I’m sorry for being selfish. I’m sorry for not living up to the standard you created. I’m sorry for not behaving like your child. I’m sorry for idolizing myself. I’m sorry for having a skewed view of you and doing nothing to fix it. If you never do another thing for me, you’ve done enough and I’m sorry for not realizing it sooner.
Most of you don’t know this about me, but God has blessed me with the gift of visions. I’m not talking about psychic, what’s the lotto numbers, Miss Cleo type visions. Most of the time they are open visions that I have to interpret, but there are occasions when the visions are direct and foretelling. For example the last time my grandfather went to the hospital, God showed me a vision of his funeral, a few minutes later the hospital called for us to come so that they can give us the news of his home going. These visions don’t happen often, but when they do I can’t help but feel overwhelmingly blessed. Earlier today God blessed me yet again with another vision that I’d like to share with you.
I was laying on the ground in an open field curled up in the fetal position. I was battered, broken, hopeless and helpless. Then Jesus walked up to me. In all the visions I’ve had of Jesus, the only parts of Him that I see are his eyes and his hole filled hands. There was only one vision out of all the visions I’ve had where I saw his robes, that was the most amazing vision I’ve ever had! I’m not sure why He only reveals His eyes and hands to me, but who am I to question? This time I only saw his eyes, even still I could not begin to tell you what color they are just know they are the most beautiful eyes you could ever look in to. Anyway, as I lay there wanting to die, I looked up at him and he looked at me with more love than I could ever imagine. It was almost unbearable for me to see him look at me with that much love. He reached down and picked me up and walked with me over to a bench, where he sat with me on his lap and just held me. He didn’t say a word, he just held me and allowed his love to radiate into me. I raised my head from his shoulder and looked into his eyes. There I saw me, but not as I am. I saw a little girl with pretty little pink bows in her hair. I was young and innocent, not polluted by the things of the world. I hadn’t been beaten up by life or by circumstances. I didn’t care about how this is gonna happen, or how that’s gonna happen, or what’s gonna happen with this situation. I was a beautiful, untainted, unscared, unbroken, innocent little girl. It amazes me that in all my mess that’s how he sees me. Yes, he knows my hurts and pains, he knows my weaknesses and shortcomings. Those things are a part of the me, but they are not ME. I’m his little girl that he loves with a love that is indescribable.
Has God ever given you a vision? If so, I’d love to hear about it. Please share.
Over the past few weeks I’ve seen countless posts/arguments about whether or not we, as Christians, are supposed to judge each other. Both sides of the argument have made some very intriguing points. Another phrase that I’ve heard tossed around a lot is “WWJD?” Well? What WOULD Jesus do? While I’m not going to bombard you or beat you over the head with scripture. (You’re Welcome! ;-)) I am going to ask you to think about it.
While I do believe that we ARE supposed to offer correction to each other, my biggest problem is with the condition of the heart behind it. How are you offering correction? Are you doing it out of a place of love and desire to see your brother/sister grow and learn from their experience? Or are you doing it out of a place of disdain, dislike, you’re wrong, I’m right and because of that I’m better than you-ness? Are you only being critical of them? Or are you criticizing the behavior and offering solutions/steps for them to fix it? Are you doing it in public, making a spectacle of things, i.e. on there Facebook wall or through public twitter posts? Are you going to them in private and being compassionate?
I don’t know about anyone else, but if I steal a loaf of bread from a store, I’m much more inclined to return it, listen to, open up to, accept corrective action from someone who comes to me in private and in love and points out what I did wrong and offer ways to get past it, than I am to someone who runs after me in the parking lot, yelling and pointing there figure calling me a thief. Yes stealing is wrong, it’s sin. Maybe I stole because I was hungry, had no money and no other option or maybe I’m just a down right thief! You condemning me, showing me no compassion isn’t going to change that one way or the other. It may in fact only make it worse.
As I was preparing a tribute page for my mother on our family website, http://familyoffaith.viviti.com (it’s a work in progress), I was reading through some of my mom’s favorite passages of scripture and came across Psalm 27:10-14
Even if my father and mother abandon me, the Lord cares for me. Because of my adversaries, show me Your way, Lord, and lead me on a level path. Do not give me over to the will of my foes, for false witnesses rise up against me, breathing violence. I am certain that I will see the Lord’s goodness in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord;
be courageous and let your heart be strong. Wait for the Lord.
The part that rang out to me is, “Wait for the Lord; be courageous and let your heart be strong. Wait for the Lord.” As I thought about this scripture the wheels started turning. If this verse is telling us to wait as in to stand still and do nothing, then why would we need to be courageous and have a strong heart? Then I thought maybe this verse isn’t saying to wait as in to do nothing, but to wait as in to serve. Maybe what it is saying is that when all these things are going on around us, when we’re being attacked on every front, when we’ve fallen so far in a pit we don’t see a way out, to continue to serve him. To not face a problem then just sit there and do nothing while saying, “I’m waiting on God to fix this”, but to serve Him through it all. To serve Him no matter what life is throwing at us.
That’s my simple minded opinion. Thoughts?
John 14:12-14 says,
Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes in me will also do the works that I do; and greater works than these will he do, because I am going to the Father.13 Whatever you ask in my name, this I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.14 If you ask me anything in my name, I will do it.
What are these works that Jesus did that he said we’ll do greater?
These were the works that Jesus did and said we would do greater! Why aren’t we? Why aren’t we walking into hospital rooms laying hands on the sick and seeing them healed? Why aren’t we raising the dead? Why aren’t we casting out demons? Why aren’t we doing greater works than these?
Is it because we aren’t ministers/pastors? John 14:12 says “…whoever believes in me..” Is it because our faith isn’t big enough? Matt 17:20 says “…For truly, I say to you, if you have faith like a grain of mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move, and nothing will be impossible for you.” Do you know how small a mustard seed really is?
These are mustard seeds. Jesus said that if we have faith as little as that, we would be able to MOVE MOUNTAINS!!! Why don’t we? Could it be that we don’t believe that greater works can be accomplished through us? Yeah, we believe in Jesus and we have faith that he can heal, but can he heal through us? The answer is YES!!! He’s God, he can use whomever he wants to do whatever he wants! Again John 14:12 says, “whoever believes in me will also do the works that I do; and greater works than these will he do.” Not just our pastors, not just Benny Hinn or Todd White, WHOEVER. It’s time we start believing and walking in it.
Why do you think we aren’t doing greater works?
Check out this amazing video of some cardboard testimonies.
What would your cardboard testimony say?
I have tons, but I’ll give you one. Side 1: Shattered Side 2: Repaired by God