A Christian journey. You're welcome to come along.
Last Build Date: Tue, 07 Oct 2014 02:55:12 +0000
In the Beginning
Tue, 18 Nov 2008 19:53:00 +0000
(image) There once was time, when time was not the evil that it is today, when the rising and setting sun was just an occurrence in an otherwise endless period of perfection and glory, when the man and the woman lived with God. They looked in His eyes, they hugged into His heart, they sat in His presence and let the sound, the living substance that is His voice, wash over them. In their world, they did not survive day to day, they lived fully. When was there not peace? When was there not joy? When were their hearts not thrilled because God came to see them? God, the Living God who made all that there is and ever will be, wanted to be friends. The One whose face cannot be seen was face to face with them. The One who spoke the universe into existence walked and talked with them. It was a time of perfection, when the eyes of the man and the woman could see and their ears hear and their minds understood more than is possible today. Then they lost. Such a simple act-how great and terrible the fall. All that was perfect was changed. All that was glorious was dulled. They met fear, hunger, and pain and the terror of what they had done. And so it began, the time of evil and hardship and hopelessness. But the One who is greater than all would not close the book on this chapter of pain. He would remember and long for the former joys. He would make a way.
Mon, 10 Mar 2008 00:30:00 +0000
(image) Wow, it's almost Spring. I was so good today. I did a hike. First one in a looong time. So pretty up in the hills near Palo Alto. You can see Hoover Tower at Stanford, the giant dirigible hanger at Moffet Field, the very end of San Francisco Bay, wild flowers, sweaty trail runners. It was so refreshing walking along ferns and flowers and warm air.
It made me think about Springtime and why this isn't the beginning of the New Year instead of January. Spring makes you think of new life, like the Easter egg, fresh starts. Why isn't it also a year start? It would make sense to me.
Anyway, I like seasons, even though our Bay Area climate is so mild that we can't really claim actual seasonal change like most of the country. But coming through a long period of cold and dark into a glorious time of sun and warmth naturally makes you think of new starts. Getting that garden back in shape. Getting that waist back in shape. It's one thing to make resolutions in January because it's the New Year. I think now is also a good time because we're naturally motivated by the weather. I think God's ok with us being influenced by nature, especially if it means getting closer to Him.
So go ahead, make your Easter Resolutions. Plan out how you will spend more time hanging out with God and listening to Him. He's the One who made it all, He probably has some good ideas about what to do.
You Looking At Me?
Sat, 08 Mar 2008 00:07:00 +0000
(image) I did an exercise the other day I've been meaning to do for some time. I went through all my journals and bits of notepaper and pulled out all the prophetic words that have been given to me and copied them onto note cards. Now I have them handy and can flip through them and be reminded all that great encouragement.
One of the cards tell me that God sees my face before him constantly. Another said it was like my face was the only face in a the mirror and that God was always looking at me. Not in a creepy way, of course, but in a loving way.
Now, I know that it's not just me. Y'all are out there too and God loves you as much, almost : ) I know I'm His real favorite. But He can do that. There's that God-thing about Him that let's Him see YOU all the time and want everything that's best for you. He's wild about you and your face is before Him constantly. I think of it like some kind of faceted jewel, where side has an image of someone but He can see them all at the same time.
It's humbling and encouraging to think about God watching you and wanting the very best for you always. We have so much to break off about the negative images of God and what He's really up to. He loves us so much. Easter is coming up. He loves us so much.
Never Say Never - I Mean Never!
Tue, 04 Mar 2008 02:52:00 +0000
(image) I learned a very wonderful lesson this weekend. I had my very first book signing at Incline Village, Nevada. Incline Village is a ski resort at Lake Tahoe. My illustrator lives nearby so she and I organized a book signing at the local library. We sent out fliers to 20 churches and posted events in the newspaper, but we didn't get any turnout. It really was a lovely day and I think that the slopes had stronger appeal than my little book.
I watched the clock tick by and no one coming in and my spirits started to drop. But I really didn't want to be discouraged. I kept telling myself that it was a good run-through for the next event. Yep, that's right. It's just practice. It's not so bad. Got to make the trip to Lake Tahoe, visit with my illustrator, it was good. So I packed up the cute bookmarks that I made with little jewels glued to them, donated the cookies to the library, boxed up the books and was ready to go. My illustrator and I lingered and talked and I kept thinking that I should just leave so I don't get depressed, when in walked a woman looking for the signing. She was a friend of my illustrator and a book reviewer for eleven newspapers! She was intrigued with my children's book, loved the size, the length, the internal layout, all without even reading it yet. She said she would be happy to review it for me and asked me to send her the the entire unpublished series.
Suddenly I wasn't so depressed! Suddenly I was pretty happy! I hadn't let my attitude get to me and force me to leave without meeting this wonderful contact. So my point is, stay positive, even when the situation looks dismal. Stay positive. It takes work, but you just never know who will walk in!
What Bilbo Didn't Know
Sat, 01 Mar 2008 05:17:00 +0000
(image) I was thinking today about where I am what my goals are. Then this thought came to me, Your horizons are changing. I had to say it to myself several times before I understood it. There's only one way for a horizon to change and that's because you move. If you're not moving anywhere, the scene is static. But climb a hill and see the difference. Or walk down a hill.
It reminded me of a scene in The Hobbit where Bilbo climbs a tree to see how long it will take them to get out of a forest. When he gets to the top, all he sees is an endless horizon of treetops and he becomes very discouraged. What he doesn't know is that the tree he climbed is the lowest of all the trees around him. He's at the bottom of a bowl and the edge of the forest is really very close, he just can't see it.
Your perspective of your horizon can play tricks on you. The secret is to know where you are, and you do that by staying close to the One who is guiding you. Once you start to stray, you can fall into the Bilbo effect and lose hope. On the other hand, if you know where you're going and the horizon changes, it could be because you're seeing it from a higher position.
I know it's all words, words, words, but someone out there gets this. Your horizons are changing, and it's a good thing. It may seem like you're struggling, but that's because you're climbing higher and getting out of the rut. Stop, take a deep breath, and look around. Looks good, huh!
Building Your Wagon
Tue, 26 Feb 2008 23:15:00 +0000
Whew! I'm back. I've had this cold/flu thing going on for so long I thought I'd never wake up breathing through my nose again. It's amazing how stuffy your thinking can get when you're sick like that. I have been so tired for so long, that being rested now feels like a shot of adrenaline. Feels pretty good!
I was reminded today about staying on track. You know how easy it is to hear a lot of advice or try to grasp every straw that comes your way? Maybe you shouldn't. I heard a wonderful teaching once about building a red wagon in a junk yard. I'm pretty sure I've talked about this before, but there must be a reason for repeating it. You walk through the junk yard and see all kinds of cool stuff that you want to pick up and take home with you. It's not necessarily bad stuff, but is it stuff that you need to build your wagon? If it's not, no matter how cool or fun it looks, leave it alone. Like my uncle the armature geologist used to call some rocks leaverights - rocks you should leave 'er right there. You only have so much you can carry out of the junk yard, so only take what will help you build your wagon. If you stay on target and not get distracted, you get a lot done!
Yes, this has spiritual applications. You've been called, to something. Don't be distracted from it. Don't dither and procrastinate. Get to it. Don't let the mantle pass to someone else because you failed to pick it up. There's a red wagon in your future. Now build it!
When the Grinch Is Right!
Tue, 19 Feb 2008 02:12:00 +0000
(image) I've been home sick for the last week with that kind of cold where everyone in the office smiles grimly at you and suggests that you go home now and get some rest, and don't come back until you're safe. Not sure I'm safe yet, but on the bright side, I've been able to catch up with Oprah. Got a real hoot from Jim Carrey clowning around today. But he said something that amazed me. I don't remember what the question was, but he responded that he carries heaven inside him. That's where he goes to re-center his life when it gets hectic. I don't know if Jim Carrey is a Christian, I've never heard that about him, but I respect his spiritual sensitivity. He really nailed a truth that I love.
Jesus said to pray "on earth as it is in heaven." It's easy to be so familiar with that prayer that we forget what it really means. It means to carry heaven inside us. To hear the voice of God in everything that we do. To see the wonder and awesomeness of God in simple things and be open to finding the Easter eggs that He's hidden for us to discover. Heaven is inside me. I really love that. But it's weird to hear it from the Grinch!
Having Fun With Destiny
Tue, 12 Feb 2008 04:01:00 +0000
(image) I write a lot about destiny because I think it's awesome. Just think about getting paid to do the thing that gives you joy. That's just wonderful. My church has been renamed Destiny Center. I get happy every time I think about it. I know that my destiny is to be a writer for God. Every day I get closer and closer to the real meat of what that means.
It occurred to me today that you can tell when you're on the right track when anything that you do that is peripheral to your own destiny gives you peace. I write, so I do a lot of reading and research to polish my tools. I follow publishing, editorial, and marketing blogs. That may sound like snoozer material for some, but not me. Today I was in the middle of a long marketing article that gave me a great idea for my website and I got the most incredible peace while I was reading. I had to sit back and contemplate what was going on, it was that significant. Don't get me wrong, you'll find plenty of headaches to deal with doing what you're supposed to do. There will always be obstacles to over come, but that's life. Once you've landed a few hurdles, you'll feel pretty good about dealing with what you need to do. Especially if you remember that there may be more than one way to get the thing done.
I kind of think that everyone has something inside wanting to get out and play. Pay attention. Listen to that tiny voice and think about how fun that would be. Then start talking to God about it and see what happens. It's going to be the best thing ever.
Lessons From Nintendo
Tue, 05 Feb 2008 05:05:00 +0000
(image) Ok, I know this may feel like a stretch, but go with me. I have a serious "like" for playing video games. It's not an addiction. I can stop any time I want to, I just haven't made the decision to do that yet. The game that keeps me mesmerized for some reason is called Bust-A-Move by Nintendo. The Wii version is a little different from the old console version, but it's got me hooked. I love shooting the colored balls down and trying to keep the game going longer than I did last time. Fortunately, God gave me an actual lesson in playing this to justify the time wasted.
I've gotten pretty good at this game because I play it a lot, even when I have a ton of other work I need to do. Must stop doing that. Anyway, I realized that I could be better my score if I changed my strategy. I tend to save my power balls until the very last second to save me from losing. But sometimes I wait too long and the game's over, even when I had a power ball that could have saved me. I learned that if I use my power balls freely, but smartly, more will come my way to grab. Holding onto them isn't productive to getting my score higher.
You see where I'm going with this? It's like money. We want to hold onto that little bit of safety in our hot little hands because we're afraid to let it go. We might need it for an emergency. But every situation where we could be using it never seems important enough to let go. Giving it up, even to bless someone else, seems wasteful. We forget that it's not ours anyway. We're only using what's been given to us. And the message of Jesus is that backwards thinking - giving away and letting go attracts more of what you had. Funny how that works. Think of other areas where this applies. Give something away and see how easily you get on after that. I'm guessing that you'll end up with more than you started.
New Must Read Book
Sat, 02 Feb 2008 00:49:00 +0000
I hadn't intended for this to be a book review blog, but when I find the good ones, I have to pass them on. I just got back from a writer's conference and I'm still trying to download everything that went on there. I sat in on two sessions with Julia Loren. Julia is writer with several books out as well as many articles for Charisma magazine. I liked her because I found her to be honest, smart, and delightful to listen to. I actually bought one of her books before I heard her speak so I was happy to like her so much before I cracked the book open.
Shifting Shadows of Supernatural Experiences, by Julia Loren and James Goll is a great book. Want(image) to understand the amazing world of God's manifestations from someone who won't embellish and glaze over the topic? Julia takes an honest, sometimes academic, approach to introducing real stories of spiritual experiences. She is a high caliber writer with an amazing subject and the result is provocative and wonderful.
Running On Magic Time!
Fri, 25 Jan 2008 02:09:00 +0000
(image) OK, this is not a particularly new thought, but when it kicks in, it's just so awesome. Give God your time and He does His God stuff to it. It works. This is a really crazy time for me right now. I work a real job, I'm launching a new series of books and my own publishing company, I have a night class, and church home group. I'm busy. The one day a week I take off to do everything I can gets really crammed. My instinctual reaction to being overly busy is panic. I start rushing everything, whether I need to or not. I don't sleep well because I lay awake at night thinking of all the stuff that needs to get done. I start snapping at poor, helpless people who stumble into my path of "production". It's not pretty and I believe it's an enemy tactic to keep me from being actually productive, and happy.
But, when I take a deep breath and lay back in the arms of my great Father, it becomes a schedule of wonder. He knows all about it. Been there and done that. At first I think that I don't have time even to do that, but the truth is, I can't afford not to. When I hand over my day to God, He cleans it all up. Not only do I get everything done that I need to, I get stuff done that I want to, like a quick game of Wii or actual cooking time in the kitchen. And I have peace - honest to goodness peace. Makes me smile just thinking about it.
The benefits of letting God be my manager include the ability to hear suggestions that I might have missed if I were rushing headlong into battle with my schedule. I hear Him telling me what to hold off on, what needs to be done soon, when to slow down for a conversation with someone who has good information to give me. He's the best business partner I could ever ask for.
Time For A Little Shake Up
Mon, 21 Jan 2008 02:29:00 +0000
(image) Have you ever read a book that grabbed you by the throat then tucked you in at night nice and safe? Whoa, you have to check this out. I don't know where this book came from, but it is seriously the best thing I've read. Not in a literary way. The tone of the Foreword, which sets up the book, is annoying. It's the message. It's all about the message. I'm not going to give a thing away. You go now to http://www.theshackbook.com/ and order it today. I will warn you that once you start, you have to keep with it. It's difficult at first. That's all I'll say.
We have all learned so much about who God is. Now it's time to unlearn it.
Once Upon A Time...Really!
Fri, 18 Jan 2008 01:33:00 +0000
(image) One of these days I'm going to write a REAL fairytale. Not about real fairies, but about how a fairytale can really happen. The thing is, when it really happens, it's not like fairy tales we grew up with. We grew up reading about dreams coming true. That's the real part as well. What's different in our world is the timing.
Even though we know that Cinderella spent years serving her sisters, in the story we jump straight into her deliverance. Snow White bites an apple, and boom! along comes a prince. It's all just so convenient, and quick.
Real fairy tales come to the same ending, but they may take a generation to happen. You may set blessings into motion that your grand kids will inherit. Your dream, that one that God gave you to be something wonderful, may be years in the making. The amount of time that passes doesn't change the nature of the happy ending. In fact, it might be a better ending with some time thrown in than it would have been if it were quicker in coming.
Hold on to those dreams. If you're still waiting for that happy ending, keep on keeping on. Talk to Joseph about spending time in prison. It must have seemed an eternity. He did OK in the end. The thing is, to really live a fairytale is to really live and living takes time. So be patient and keep looking for the bright tomorrow.
When Attitude Isn't Everything
Tue, 15 Jan 2008 01:27:00 +0000
(image) It took a while, but some time ago I transitioned from being a Christian afraid of hell to being in love with heaven. If you jumped in the Wayback Machine and talked to me as a young Christian, I'm not sure I would have understood the difference. It's the glass half full/half empty thing. But it's even more than that. I think we're light years away from understanding what "on earth as it is in heaven" really means. If we get our heads and hearts around that, we could impact the universe. I have no idea how, but it just seems possible.
However, this attitude of walking in the Kingdom NOW carries with it a weakness, at least for me it does. It's easy to feel almost a little cocky about faith and destiny and royal authority. I have to remember to repent! I have to repent of my careless attitude that I know I'm saved and loved and human. There are plenty of people who have to deal with me daily who would be happy to point to my shortcomings. It's a little comforting in know that Paul bemoaned his own sinfulness, but it doesn't excuse mine. Sometimes I can be so heavenly minded that I'm no earthly good. Even though I see heaven, I need to feel earth and maintain humility in what I do.
And that humility doesn't require a whipping session. It means honest repenting for what I know I've done. And it also means sincere thankfulness for every blessing in my life. It's the glass half full approach to humility. Acknowledging sin and embracing thankfulness. Having an attitude of gratitude goes hand in hand with honest confession.
Missing Jewels. Must Find.
Mon, 07 Jan 2008 22:56:00 +0000
We interrupt this regularly scheduled blog for a moment of blatant self promotion. My book is out!!! Quick, look to the left panel. Yes, that one. Where the Jewels Are is the first of ten books that I wrote in a series called Tales From The Throne. It's a very sweet story about a Princess on a quest to find a precious jewel. If you have kids, or know kids, in the 8 -10 year old range, what are you waiting for? Operators are standing by. Your very own copy can be flying through the mail to your waiting hands in a matter of days. Order here.The next book is already in process. Because I am self-published, I do all the desktop publishing myself, including cover layout and formatting, so I am working closely with my artist, Sara Smith on all the illustrations. We're both working as fast as possible to get The King's Guard up next. We just had to follow a girl's story with a boy's story. My goal is to have it ready by the end of the month. Fingers crossed. After the second book, hopefully we'll have worked out all the kinks so all ten stories can be available, well, when they are. If you are interested in being on an email list to get updates on the next releases, sign up on my website wwww.dianasymons.com. I'll keep postings there on release status. There is also a page for kids to send me pictures they draw of the stories. Take a picture of them, or scan them and send them to me (firstname.lastname@example.org) and I'll post them in a photo album. I'd love to have kid comments in the guest book as well. If you have a child who might be interested in giving me a cover quote for future books, I'll send a copy of the text and a free book when it's published.Now back to your blog reading now in progress....
Stop Avoiding Hell!
Fri, 04 Jan 2008 02:54:00 +0000
(image) Are you living heaven or avoiding hell? There's a big difference. If you are the cup half empty sort, then you go around making decisions to stay out of trouble, but you're not really getting the full benefit of what you, as a Christian, have been given. There are some people who seem to always stand in the threshold of heaven, with one foot that keeps stepping outside, never venturing into the kingdom because it could be "a little too different". Imagine your kids not wanting to come in and sit at the table or relax in the living room, always lingering at the front door. They never get to enjoy the room prepared just for them, with all their favorite stuff, not to mention all the people who love them inside.
At some point in your life, it's important to understand what salvation is all about. You make a serious decision to live for God and give up some bad habits that hurt you anyway. After that, there's no need to stress about salvation everyday. You're in baby! Take your shoes off. Enjoy.
Now is the time to check out what comes with the package. Whoo-hoo! Take a look at all those fruits of the Spirit and those gifts! And check out your destiny! You've got some pretty cool stuff going on there. What are you waiting for? Go for it! Have you ever seen a little kid that had to be persuaded that the big Christmas present was for him? Don't be like that. It has your name on it so take it.
Live heaven now. There's no benefit to avoiding hell, except for the not going to hell part. There's no growth, no blessing, greater trust in the One who waits to give you more in your life. He really likes making your deliriously happy. The more, the better. So come in, close the door and check out what heaven is all about.
Thinking Wild And Crazy Thoughts!
Sun, 30 Dec 2007 22:34:00 +0000
(image) Well, I'm back from running around over Christmas and am now thinking of the New Year. I've heard it mentioned a couple of times that 2008 is the year of new beginnings and creative miracles. What a great way to look at the future. I was stuck on the word creative though. Yes, I believe in miracles. I love the story of the boys trying to walk through the wall. But I was thinking of creativity in another way.
We all know someone truly creative - the person who can do anything with their hands. My mother was like that. She could make the most amazing centerpieces for a little girl's birthday party out of tissue, pipe cleaners and glitter. Some people are just gifted, like McGiver. But I think we all have some amount of creativity in us. We are made in the image of God, and part of His nature is creativity. Too many of us have been taught not to recognize it, or even look for it.
I think 2008 is the year to find it. You've got something in you that wants to come out. You have access to divine inspiration for something that you need to do and it's in you already. Decide that you have it. If you don't do that you won't get anywhere. Once you decide that you have it in you, then daydream and let the ideas come. The Holy Spirit is all about inspiration and He'll use your thoughts to communicate new things. Don't discount anything for being too wild or excessive or outrageous. Follow your thoughts and see where they go. This could be a really fun year.
David, Do Your Homework!
Fri, 21 Dec 2007 01:30:00 +0000
(image) I was listening to a sermon podcast today (I love podcasts!) and the speaker said something that gave me an Aha! moment. Actually, it was more like a Wow! moment. You know, like when you hear the same scripture for the fortieth time that you finally get what it means. He said something about the courage of a fifteen year old boy to run at a giant. Now, how many times have YOU heard the story of David and Goliath? Me too. But today I was caught by the age element. Fifteen years old! I've raised a fifteen year old. I know what it's like to have a teenage boy in the house. I've known that David was a "youth", but until I heard fifteen year old, I didn't relate him to anyone I knew. Suddenly I had visions of my son out on the battlefield, alone. Tall, blond, curly hair, just like you'd picture David. Suddenly, David became real in my life. (It just occurred to me how real this is now. My son is now in the Navy.)
The people in Bible stories can seem so distant. Even though they were real people, they seem to be storybook characters. I played a game with myself to try to make the stories more real. I pictured people that I know playing lead roles in some stories. The easiest one was my sister Deborah playing Deborah. She did a great job. It did help me remember that these were real people. What if YOU were called on to lead the country in battle against an enemy army. Could you play Gideon? How about Ruth or Nehemiah?
But that's just a game. Get real now. You could be called on to do something amazing today. God hasn't changed. He did some wild things in the Bible. Chances are that He's still open to doing wild things today. And as believers, we have the Holy Spirit backing us up to do the impossible. Jesus said we would do greater things than He did. Wow! Bring it on! Are you ready? This could get really fun.
Enough With The Hellfire
Wed, 19 Dec 2007 01:44:00 +0000
(image) If you grew up in the church, you probably remember the days when you were supposed to "witness" to people by telling them that unless they get saved, they're going to hell. Now, that's not a lie, it's just not an effective, or kind, way to bring people into the kingdom. If we let God control the conversation, we're likely to get better results.
I learned that today when I had lunch with a friend. After we caught up on each other's life, she mentioned that she was having a seriously difficult time relating to her stepdaughter. I've been there and done that so I knew what she was going through. But I really didn't have an answer for her. While she was talking, I prayed. Then it came to me. I told her that I knew that she was a spiritual person. She stopped and got very quiet and nodded her head. I know she doesn't claim to be a Christian, but I don't discount her sincerity or her beliefs. I said that God has the key to understanding this girl. All she has to do was ask Him and believe that any ideas she gets after that are from Him. She stared at me for a minute then said that those words went straight into her heart. She "felt" them.
Then she asked for help dealing with her own issues that she stuggled with being a stepmother. Immediately I knew that the problem was unforgiveness. I told her that she needed to forgive herself, her stepdaughter, the girl's mother, and her husband. Because it was the right word for her, she knew exactly what I was talking about. It made sense to her, even though I could feel some discomfort at having to face it.
I didn't have any agenda to "witness" to her when we made lunch plans. She's my friend and I asked God how to help her. I wasn't prepared for the impact that it had on her. She recieved it so greatfully. Now, if she does ask God for help, she will begin building a relationship with Him that she didn't have before. Most people don't think to ask God for help with their problems and get a real answer. They just hope that He'll do something about it.
Today I learned to listen to heaven in the middle of a converation and say the right thing. "A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in settings of silver." Prov 25:11
Not Boring In This Part Of Church!
Tue, 18 Dec 2007 01:30:00 +0000
(image) One thing I have come to understand about the Christian experience is that you get what you want out of it. It's taken me a long time to come to the spiritual, or supernatural, part of Christianity. I observed a lot of what I considered per emotionalism and didn't want to be part of it. I came to terms with this new dimension through a side door.
My sister, the amazing Deborah Reed, devotes her life to teaching children "the prophetic", or how to hear God. I had to become as a little child and sit in on those teachings so I could understand it. (To find out more about Deborah's ministry, and invite her to your church! go to: http://www.itreasures.org/) It's tricky when you expect things to be complicated. I have to think things through carefully and when the concept is down right simple, it's hard for me to grasp.
After a while I got it, or at least got on the right path. I got to practice hearing God in my own life in a safe environment where good teachers helped me in my baby steps. We had practice sessions where we all prayed for one person. We listened for a voice in our heart, an image, feeling, number, what ever. I just had to trust that when I asked God to speak to me that He would. So I would get an image of something, a rose, and tell the person, "When I prayed for you, I got an image of a rose." I feel confirmed in saying that when the person standing next to me gets excited because they also got an image of a rose. Then we both get excited because it turns out that roses have a very significant meaning to the person we're praying for. Then the fun starts because you realize that you're getting it and want more. We pray of other people and finally it's your turn to be prayed for and the things that people say to you make you weep.
Well now, I'm using this new aspect of my faith in my church. I'm on an intercessor prayer team and have been blown away by hearing God talk to me. Yesterday in church, I prayed for the service the whole morning. I would get an image of something, or an idea, and pretty soon the Pastor would speak it. It happened over and over again. I saw something, then he would say it. At one point, I had a funny image that I didn't understand at all. Later on, someone stood to speak a word of encouragement to the congregation and something in what he said was the key to understanding the vision that I had. It was really very exciting.
Paul said, "I would that ye all spoke with tongues, but rather that ye prophesied..." I Cor 14:2. "But he that prophesieth speaketh unto men to edification, exhortation, and comfort." I Cor 14:3. I have to say, it truly has been edifying and comforting.
Dreams Made Real
Wed, 12 Dec 2007 19:20:00 +0000
(image) It's amazing how much God talks to us. It's all the time! We just don't stop and listen so we miss almost all of it. The sad part is that it just takes a moment to rest in His presence to hear His voice. When I do that, I'm always surprised. I shouldn't be, but I am.I've been working on writing a new book and I reached a place where I just stopped. It's not the end of the story, I just didn't know where to go next. So I took a break. I closed my eyes and asked God to show me the next part of the story. At first, I didn't hear anything. Eventually I heard Him say that He's already given me the story, the whole thing, I just need to relax and let it come to me. I thought, I already have the whole thing? "Yes", He said. "I wouldn't give you just a part of it." I was thinking about that and my mind wandered to something else. I was trying to figure out the sales tax on a certain amount, so I picked up a my calculator and worked it out. As I sat there looking at the numbers, I noticed that a message had been printed at the top of the calculator. It said, "dreams made real". I've had that calculator for years and never seen that before. I thought about dreams being made real and I felt God smile. He's so good.
How Thick ARE These Walls?
Tue, 11 Dec 2007 01:27:00 +0000
(image) I heard an amazing story the other day. A youth pastor was sitting in his office in Southern California trying to work. His concentration was being disturbed by thumping against the wall outside his office. He tried to ignore it, but finally got up to investigate. Well, it turns out that this youth pastor has a unique bunch of kids in his church. These kids have learned that what ever they read in the Bible that Jesus did is fair game for them to try. They were in the hallway trying to walk through the wall! When it didn't work, they kept trying. They've also walked on water. They were at someones pool taking turns standing on the water and taking steps. Now that's the generation I want to see take over. Radical faith, these kids got it. Do you think they'd think twice about anything that God calls them to do? I hope I'm not too old to have that kind of faith. I just might practice bumping into walls myself.
When Dreams Talk
Fri, 07 Dec 2007 02:12:00 +0000
(image) Do you ever listen to your dreams? I mean, your real dreams, that you have when you sleep at night. God spoke to people in dreams a lot in the Bible. He hasn't changed, so I think we can assume that He's still talking. We've just gotten so far away from hearing Him. We're afraid to sound too New Age or just plain crazy. We forget that God doesn't behave the way He's supposed to.
Pay attention to dreams that you remember vividly. They could be giving you direction or warning. If you are concerned that you're getting strange direction, not to worry, just pay attention. God will confirm His voice to you in different ways. If you think you're getting the same message through some other source, then you should listen up.
One time I was getting advice to go to a writer's conference. I looked into it and tried to see if I could fit it into my schedule. Then I had a dream that I was putting on different wigs and dresses and hats that didn't belong to me and made me look ridiculous. When I prayed about the dream the next day, I realized that I didn't have to try to be like everyone else because it just wasn't going to work for me. I dropped the plans for the conference.
But don't get overly stressed about every single thing you dream. Even Freud said that sometimes a cigar is just a cigar. He wasn't so good about knowing when a dream is an invitation to your destiny.
Tue, 04 Dec 2007 01:29:00 +0000
(image) I've been guilty of being frozen by indecision. I've passed on doing things that I maybe I should have done or done things that I should have passed on. Friends, family, coworkers all have opinions. Who do you listen to? Even the kindest soul with all the best intentions may not be the one to follow.
As a recovering indecisioner, I'm getting better. I realized that I don't always take advantage of having the Master Decision Maker at my disposal. I came to a place where I had to settled in my mind that the Holy Spirit is here to help. I've asked Him for His guidance and direction so I should suppose that He has something to say about that. The thing is, He doesn't always announce His help by speaking in a commanding voice in my ear: "This is the Lord God talking. I have some guidance for you." I wish He would.
Instead, He speaks through my own thoughts, or other people, or the Word, or any number of avenues. Now I have to trust. When I come to a fork in the road and I've heard all the input, I go with the one I feel best about. I just have to trust. Because I've asked God for His help, I know that one of the answers I've been given is His, so I have to believe that it's the one that feels the best.
What if I'm wrong? Well, it's probably not going to be the end of the world. At least I hope not. I'm pretty sure I don't want to be responsible for that one. But I also believe that if I'm sincere in wanting to hear God, He's not going to let me do something destructive. I believe that He will continue to communicate to me in ways that I will eventually hear. If I just don't get it, He's still God. He can take my mistakes and use then for great good. I'm not in trouble, I'm just more experienced the next time.
It makes life a lot less stressful. Just do it, or don't do it, but don't stress over it. What does it feel like? Ok then, it's settled. On to the next thing. When you have a world to conquer, you just can't sweat the small stuff.
Fri, 30 Nov 2007 01:56:00 +0000
(image) My Dear Child,
I've noticed that you've been busy lately. You've got a lot to do- work, kids, shopping. The holidays make everyone so rushed. You haven't come to me for a long time. I miss you. Even when you come to me exhausted and you don't know what to say, I miss you.
Just so you know, I think of you all the time. I do, I really do. I love you so much. Thinking of you makes me smile.
So here's what I want to do for you. I'll help you get through all the busyness if you spend some time with me. I know you think that you don't have time to do that, but trust me on this. If you give me some of your time, I'll give you time back - more than you need. And all those problems you've been struggling with? Bring those with you and let me have them. I've got a great plan all worked out. You'll love it.
And don't forget to have some fun. I have a great idea for you. Come see me and I'll tell you all about it. Feel free to stop by anytime. I'm always open. Stay as long as you can. Just come. We have a lot to talk about.
I love you with all my heart,