Results Aren’t Important

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“God calls us to obedience not results.”

This was a quote from yesterday’s sermon that stood out to me. The pastor shared a story of a volunteer in the young adults group who shared Christ with a homeless man. The homeless man said no and walked away. The pastor realized this volunteer wasn’t sharing a story of a failed attempt at evangelism but instead, he shared an example of obedience.

I remembered a time when God asked me to knock on the door of a former friend’s house. I even had an image of the door. This was important because she was moving soon and the door I saw was her current door. I knew God wanted me to try to mend this friendship one more time before she moved. I didn’t want to. I soooooo didn’t want to. Out of obedience I knocked. She invited me in and we actually had a good conversation. However, I left the ball in her court and told her I’d wait to hear from her. It never went anywhere. I felt I had failed. Yesterday, during church, I realized I didn’t fail – I obeyed. Obedience is what God wanted, not results.

Wow – that is so freeing. Is God asking you to do something that you know won’t work? Maybe you’ll be surprised and it will. Or maybe it won’t. The result isn’t important. It’s the obedience.

Jesus replied, “Anyone who loves me will obey my teaching. ~ John 14:23 NIV

But be very careful to keep the commandment and the law that Moses the servant of the Lord gave you: to love the Lord your God, to walk in obedience to him, to keep his commands, to hold fast to him and to serve him with all your heart and with all your soul.” ~ Joshua 22:5 NIV

Just this week, God nudged me to call someone. I did. No results yet but I did my part. I obeyed. I can rest in the fact that I followed His lead. What happens next is up the the person and how God wants to handle it. I don’t have to wonder or worry about the results.

I encourage you to discover where God is nudging you to act in obedience: start a small group, call a friend, forgive someone, write a note of apology, pray for someone, and so on. Do it. Obey. What happens after isn’t important. The results aren’t what God wants – He wants you to obey, even if it’s hard or doesn’t make sense. Obey. The results are His to be concerned with.

Dream Big! Pray Big!

Worry

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LOVE HIM IN THE MORNING

Love Him in the morning when you see the sun arisin’. Love Him in the evening ’cause He took you through the day. And in the in between time when you feel the pressure comin’, Remember that He loves you and He promises to stay.

When you think you’ve got to worry, ’cause it seems the thing to do. Remember He ain’t in a hurry, He’s always got time for you. So…(repeat)

I sang this song a ton growing up at church. There are hand motions and everything. I sat down to blog and the song popped into my head. I was worrying. I am concerned for my finances and work. I was drawing a blank on what to blog, then the song appeared. It seems like a simple camp song, and that is how I have always used it. Today, it’s truth and it touched my heart.

TRUTH: God loves me – “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” ~ John 3:16 NIV

TRUTH: God promises to stay “Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.” ~ Deuteronomy 31:6 NIV

TRUTH: God isn’t in a hurry – “But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day. The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.” ~ 2 Peter 3:8-9 NIV

TRUTH: God has time for me“Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” ~ Jeremiah 29:12-13 NIV

Take time to think of other “simple” church songs. I bet you find powerful truths and promises that will lift you up.

Dream Big! Pray Big!

Black Lives Matter

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Yes they do. So far I haven’t written about the Black Lives Matter protests that are happening around the world. I didn’t know what to say. I didn’t want to say it wrong. I didn’t want to offend. I still don’t know what to say and I still may say it wrong and I still may offend – that is not my intent.

When I heard the phrase, Black Lives Matter, I wanted to say “All lives matter.” I have since been educated to see how that is offensive. Why, you ask? Because for this season, at this moment, we are helping this particular group to have their day and their say. Yes, all lives matter. The point is, until we get some things cleared up and racism acknowledged, we need to help our black brothers and sisters. We do that by focusing on them for a change.

What can I do? Well, for one, I can look at myself. I grew up in a home that told racist jokes and I have told many in my day. It is what I knew and all I knew. I now know better. Once you know better, you can’t go back. You are now aware and you must help, once you get that awareness. I can help by looking at my words and jokes. I remember attending a Bible study back in 2000. One of the women in the group spoke Spanish as her primary language. When she read scripture, I began to cry. Where I grew up, Hispanics were the predominate race in our community. I had a huge prejudice from my youth. Hearing God’s word spoken in a beautiful accent from a precious sister in Christ, melted my heart and convicted me. I had the same thing happen when I spoke at a retreat of predominantly Asian women. God has been chipping away at my prejudices year after year.

This year, we all need to look at it. Black, white, brown, yellow, purple or orange – whatever someone’s color, we need to look at each other as brothers or sisters in Christ. God calls us to love one another.

Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. – I John 4:7-9 NIV

We all need Jesus. We all need the forgiveness and salvation that comes from God. If you find yourself unsure of what to do to help Black Lives Matter, love. Love everyone you come into contact with. Share Jesus at every opportunity you have.

Let me add this last part – educate yourself. Is love enough? No. We have lived too long in ignorance. You will see your love deepen as you gain knowledge. Learn how brothers and sisters who are different than you have been treated. Understand the built in defenses black men and women have lived with for years. Then love.

Praying we all gain understanding. Praying we all seek forgiveness for our sins of racism. Praying we all grow in wisdom. Praying we all grow!

Dream Big! Pray Big!

Why I blog

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I blog because I love you. I want the best for you in your life. My hope is that you grow as a result of my blogs. My desire is for everyone who reads my blog to be encouraged and/or challenged. My purpose in blogging is to provide growth by sharing my growth and inner thoughts and feelings. I strive to be vulnerable.

I blog because I love Jesus. He is my reason for everything. He gives me all I need to face every day. He is my hope and my purpose. I want everyone to know Jesus. I want you to know Him deeper. I desire for all who read my blog to leave with a new understanding of the depth of love Jesus has for them. My purpose in blogging is to lead people into relationship with Jesus or deepen the relationship they already have with Him. I strive to be His vessel.

I blog because I love to write. I am a writer. I am actually a published author. I am grateful for those opportunities I had to be published. I have an unpublished novel sitting on my hard drive too. Writing is a way for me to express truth. My purpose in writing it to perfect my craft and encourage others while I do it. I strive to be an excellent writer.

If you are new to my blog, welcome. If you have been here awhile, thanks for staying. It is my joy and pleasure to love you, Jesus, and writing.

Dream Big! Pray Big!

It’s OK to not be OK

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My pastor has been saying this to us each week, “It’s OK to not be OK.” Although I believe him, I was feeling a bit less Christian because I wasn’t OK. The riots and curfew that started this past weekend sent me into a tailspin. It overwhelmed me. I cried. I prayed. I cried some more. When I went to life group on Monday night via Zoom, I let it all out again. In that session with other amazing women of God, I left encouraged. Still not OK, but encouraged and more OK. We didn’t all share our woes about current day, but several shared their stories of God’s presence in their past woes. Hearing what these women overcame, gave me hope. It reminded me that life is hard but God is present. It encouraged me to press on.

So I ask – are you OK?

I also ask, are you doing life with anyone? Every week our church asks us “who are you doing life with? and where are you serving?” I wasn’t doing life with my church until a few months ago when I joined alife group. It changed me. I have other groups I connect to but being connected to women from my own church made a difference. Find people to do life with. You won’t thrive during this season without it. We need people who we can say “I’m not OK” and they won’t give us platitudes. We don’t need judgement, we need understanding.

I also ask – if you aren’t OK, are you telling people you aren’t OK?

But everything exposed by the light becomes visible—and everything that is illuminated becomes a light.  ~ Ephesians 5:13 NIV

Keeping it in is only fanning the flame of loneliness and shame. The verse says everything illuminated becomes a light. How I interpret that is everything you bring out into the open is now a tool God can use to help you grow or that you can use to help others grow. I didn’t want to write this blog. I don’t want to tell everyone I’m not OK, but I’m not. I am seeking God daily. I am listening to sermons. I am reading His word. I am sad. I am lonely. I am struggling with what is happening in the world. I am fearful. I am God’s child and I’m running to Him like a child right now. I need my Daddy.

If you have no community, reach out to me. I’ll connect with you and help you find community. If you have community, be honest with them. Be transparent and vulnerable and you will see a change in heart and in your soul. After I shared with my life group, I slept through the whole night and had no crazy dreams. What a gift!

So I ask again – are you OK?

Dream Big! Pray Big!