Welcome to Getting Your Fix! Whether you have time to meditate on with a cup of 'joe' or not, these daily doses of power will encourage, inspire and empower you. Time to get charged!
In His Grip,
Lisa - Warrior, Princess

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Dad is Coming to Town

     My dad is coming to town sometime in June. I am sooo excited to see him. However, while out of his reach of discipline and accountability I have wavered in the way he has taught me to care for my physical health. Living in the south with all the great southern, big, greasy food has given much assistance in my decline of healthy living. Knowing he will arrive at the end of June, I have been diligent in getting back into shape. Sadly, this has been a cycle in my life since I left home for college.
     While reflecting on this it had me thinking about the Parable of the Ten Virgins in the bible. This parable told by Jesus tells how ten virgins fell asleep. When it was time for the bridegroom to return they all awoke. Five had enough oil to keep their lights trimmed and the other five did not. Those without had to go find some because the five who had did not have enough to share. While the five went to find some oil, the bridegroom arrived. Begging to be let in the bridegroom basically told them it was too late and they were not allowed in.
     Like my habit with my earthly father I fall asleep and get lazy with healthy habits. When I see the time is near for him to come I am thankful for the oil to get me into shape to receive him. I am ready for our time together. I am able to show that I have not forsaken, totally, what he has taught me and that I can apply it to my life. 
     My goal this time is to stay ready. I shouldn't have to drop 30 pounds every time my dad is coming on the scene. I should be able to maintain the lessons he and my mother have taught me. Discipline needs to be constant. My mind should stay sober and physically focused in taking care of myself. 
    Likewise, we as believers need to stay sober and alert, ready to receive Christ when he returns. We should be able to show that we have held to the life lessons of His word and be an example of His teaching. The back and forth and turn taking from the broad to the narrow; back to the broad and then, to the narrow; is  not what the Lord rightfully deserves from us. We should embark to do more. Let's encourage each other to stay sober. To be diligent, to stay awake; walking consistently in what the Lord has taught in His word. Then we will be ready to receive Him and enter into all He has prepared for us. 

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Patience for Patience

     I am so blessed by my women's bible study. We had a great time in the Lord this evening. Sharing with you one of our short discussions, I believe will bless you as well. Gideon was addressed as a valiant warrior by the Angel of the Lord. Even after this great visitation Gideon experienced fear and doubt in what the Lord called him to do. The assignment? Destroy an army of 135,000 with only 300 men. Through his ups and downs, he ended up; and the Lord provided the victory as promised. 
     Just like Gideon, God favors of us with His patience. God is so great and good. We experience His patience when we are saved, as He changes and transforms us, and as He calls us into His purpose for His glory. Our focus, after the wonderful teaching by Priscilla Shirer, was transformation. We listened to testimonies of what they were formerly and how the Lord changed and transformed their lives. Freedom was in the room. It was awesome and encouraging to hear about the chains broken off my sisters in Christ and the freedom they are are walking in today.
     Prior to this time of sharing, the Lord pressed upon my heart to point out that He cleans and guts the fish caught. Just as God had a specific time and place to bring the conviction of the Holy Spirit regarding a habit or character issue that needed changing in our individual life, the same is true for everyone else. The patience that God extends to us, we should seek to extend to others.
     We don't know where a person is in their transformation by the hands of the Lord. He molds each of us. What He removed from us at the beginning of our born again experience, may be removed in another's in the middle or at the end of their journey. We must be careful and led by the Holy Spirit with correction. Give grace. Show compassion. Listen and speak with wisdom. And always come in the spirit of love.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Your Enemies? Already Defeated!

     You guys I am so excited about this post! The Lord gave me a word and I know it can speak to the circumstances of others. God is with us indeed! Glory to God!!
     While taking a walk yesterday, Memorial Day, I was noticing all this road kill. At first, this was a normal occurrence because I live in a new housing development in the sticks ya'll. Wow. It is perfectly normal to see scorpions dead and alive as well as snakes. I have lived here for almost 5 years now and can count on one hand how many dead snakes I have seen taken out by a car. 
     Anyway, first there were a few scorpions and worms, in my mind I brushed it off as probably from the rain and kept walking to talk with the Lord. Ok. I am a complainer and there are some things God has called me into that I was like, "Lord, you CANNOT mean me," and He was like, "Yes, I do,"
     Recently, He has given me some first steps and I was like, "Lord, this has to be You for me to move forward. I need to know that this is You." 
     Through His word and this semester's Bible study He is taking extra lengths to say, "It is me GO!."
     The purpose of my walk was to let Him know what was on my mind once again which was basically all doubt and fear based, in particular the fear of man. Past experiences of slander and rejection, of even those in the church, creep up and bring doubt. "Lord, how is this even going to happen? I just don't see it. I don't have that kind of favor Lord. Really, You are going to have to really work a miracle here, because I can't do it. I really don't know what I am doing. Can you please give me some sort of sketch of a plan at least. What about those who afflict and reject me; those who would say that I am not Your servant? I just don't know Lord."
     I am so glad that there are ear piece phones now. Anyone who passed by would most likely assume I was talking through that rather than My friend Jesus walkin' right next to me. When I talk to the Lord, I talk with my hands, facial expressions; I mean it is totally animated, just like with anyone else. 
    There I am walking and talking and continue to notice all these dead animals. As I said earlier it was a couple scorpions and worms. But, then it was increasing. Almost every step I saw another scorpion, dead. And then, a centipede. It was curled and dried up, dead. Then I saw a flattened frog. Then I started seeing dead snakes and they went from smaller to bigger as I went on. So, in the middle of my discourse of doubt and fear I asked, "And what is up with all the road kill, Lord?! I'm so sure."
     Immediately, Isaiah 54:17 dropped in my heart. 

     "No weapon formed against you shall prosper, And every tongue which rises against you in judgment You shall condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the LORD, And their righteousness is from Me," Says the LORD."

     Then the Lord spoke to me (but this is for all of us, it's for you too.) He said, "I have already gone before you and destroyed your enemies."

     Saints! The road of your destiny has been paved and anything that would try to derail your walk, make you turn to the right or left, or come to harm has already been dealt with. We serve a mighty, MIGHTY GOD! He is the planner and will get us there. Don't lose heart. Do not faint. Fear not. Trust God. His eye is on the sparrow... and on all the snakes too.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Only Dessert

     One thing I am really looking forward to when the end comes and I find myself in Heaven is the banqueting table. My imagination can't even grasp how good it is going to be because it won't be anything we have had here. It will be new and good! I look forward to it because I love food and enjoy eating A LOT!
     The problem is I am attracted to everything that can cause poor health more than I am to what will produce great health. It takes a conscious effort and deliberate focus for me to eat for wellness. If no negative effect would happen, I would have a diet of cheese, ice-cream, chocolate, vanilla cake with whip cream icing and caramel/Oreo cookie/banana ice-cream sundae. However, this would not give me proper nourishment. I would end up getting sick and eventually gravely ill.
     The fact that the Lord made many physical laws to parallel spiritual ones is a blessing.  In the same manner that we need to feed our physical bodies we need to feed our spiritual bodies. If the only thing you are serving your spirit is dessert, you will not grow and become spiritually ill. If continued you can become little use to the Kingdom of God because of becoming dead, spiritually. You need at first milk, like an infant and then as you come to maturity meat, fruit and vegetables.
     So, what do I mean by that? Dessert feeds the desires of the flesh. Your balanced nutritious meal feeds the spirit. Dessert in the church would be the aesthetics like the donut and coffee bar; events like the Harvest Festival (replacing Halloween festivities - that's a sermon for another day); and special programs around Christmas and Easter. These things are great! I attend as many of them as I can and participate as well. However, if this is the extent of your fellowship with believers you will not grow or be spiritually healthy.
     The milk, meat, fruit and vegetables come from being discipled with sound doctrine from the Word of God. The best kind of milk for infants is whole milk, not watered down. The same is true for those new to the body of Christ, whole milk; not watered down. When you come to maturity and able to handle it, the best meat, fruit and vegetables is organic; no additives or pesticides.
     If you are in a church that waters down the word, meaning not giving the hard stuff people don't like to talk about such as sin, repentance, holiness, righteousness and the gifts of the spirit, you will not be filled. You will know there is more and hop from place to place looking for what your spirit is thirsty and hungry for. Or you will take someone else's word for what THE Word says. 
     The only way you are going to know the whole truth is to study the Bible for yourself. There is no way even a life time of being in church will allow your pastor to be able to deliver every sentence in the Bible and it's meaning in the time of 30 minutes a week. In the end, they will be responsible for what they taught and how many they truly raised to maturity in order to walk out the God given purpose for each individual. Jesus commanded that the shepherds (pastors, preachers, teachers) of His flock (us) feed His sheep (John 21:17.) My question to all pastors, preachers and teachers is what kind of food are you feeding Jesus' sheep?
     Some may say, "Well John 21:17 is Jesus telling Peter that. It doesn't apply to me." When put with Jesus' command for the disciples to make disciples of men teaching them to follow ALL they were commanded by Him (Matthew 28:20,) yes, it does apply to you.
     If you want to know if a church is doing well in this area, go volunteer in the children's ministry. See what is going on in the children's church and youth programs. Are the children learning scripture by memorization or just a song that sings about scripture? Do you hear the children and youth making references to what they have learned? Do the children learn the books of the Bible in order? Another test is if your pastor is comfortable with you having a piece of paper to fill out during his message and not pushing you to bring your Bible to follow along. 
     One of the things Jesus warned us of regarding the end time is deception. Deception happens when you don't know the truth. The truth is found in God's word. So study it. Feed on it and grow. It is the energy you need to persevere in this world. The Holy Spirit will guide you and teach you. He is the power that will help you live the Word out!
     Dessert is good, enjoyable and fun! But the meat of the word gives life! It is mysterious, challenging, comforting and exciting! It is the fuel to help you run your race. It is the directives to hearing at the finish line, "Well done!"

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

To All the Hommies in the HOUSE

     My house is a wreck. It is a total mess. I have laundry in a basket that should have been folded and put away two days ago. Dishes are in the sink. Papers, books, coats and DVD's are all around the family room. So, if you come over to visit, we will take company in the living room which is totally spotless. Why is it spotless? Because I am a 70's child. The formal living and dining rooms are always perfect because nobody goes in there unless it is a special occasion or a guest visits. 
     Well, if you are Heidi Parres, Maha Maturo, Amy Thomas, Nicole Fitzpatrick, Cheryl Canfield or another one of my close friends who know me and have for decades, you will see the mess because we have an intimate relationship. These persons will see the dirty laundry, mess everywhere and tell me I need to take care of it and give me grace. They know me well. I trust them with my fallacies and weaknesses because they aren't going to judge me or go around town degrading me because my house is dirty and in disarray. They're my hommies. They got my back : )
     In our lives it is necessary to have some hommies, especially as you walk out your journey with Christ. We need people who we allow to see our dirty laundry and closets to help stay accountable to keeping the house (our temple) clean. Hommies are better than just 'a friend' because they will defend you, fight for you, support you, encourage you and correct you. They yearn for you to be the best you can be without comparison to themselves or jealousy. A hommie will cry with you when everything in their life is grand; and praise the Lord with you when everything in their life is falling apart. A hommie will show you where you're wrong and how to be right in love, with grace and mercy. A hommie will not diss you because someone else is or make your friendship based on how those they want favor with feel about you. Most hommies are lifers - life-long friends.
     Here is a great test to know if you are with a hommie or not:

     "As iron sharpens iron, so a man sharpens the countenance of his friend." - Proverbs 27:17

     As you spend time with a person do you feel uplifted, encouraged and supported? When you share dreams and hopes do you feel built up with sound wisdom or deflated? When you share your business do they make it theirs to share with others? As you spend time with them are they sharpening your countenance, meaning, helping you become stronger and able to stand in difficult times. Are you smiling and filled with joy or drained and downcast?
     My prayer is if you don't have at least one hommie then, the Lord will bring a true friend your way. And as you wait and search that you would be a true friend to someone in your midst. Always remember that as God provides are hommies on earth, the greatest Hommie is Jesus. He has your back and will always work to sharpen you for greatness.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Beyond Recognition

     Have you ever been in a fight or seen one? I mean, a good one with blood and everything. It is amazing. I saw my first bloody fight when I went away to college. Two men were hitting each other, HARD! Both of them were bleeding from the nose and mouth when. Sweat poured from their faces and mixed with the blood that smeared like red paint onto their shirts and pants. The brawl went from standing position to the ground a couple of times as people tried to break them up. Even still, with friends pulling at them and begging for them to stop, they continued with determination.
     Finally, their friends were able to get them stop once exhaustion and lack of energy became obvious through their near inability to stand. Noses were broken. Lips were swollen and cut. A cheek and upper eye area had cuts. A forehead had cuts. Arms had scratches with gravel from the street. Yet, with all the blood, cuts, bruises, swollen parts and dirt. They looked pretty much the same from when the fight first began. They were recognizable. I wonder what would have happened had one of them chose not to fight back and be struck over and over again. Would they have been beaten beyond recognition as the Lord?
     I am watching the DVD set of the most recent television rendition of the Bible. It got me thinking about the Lord and the day he was beaten and whipped. The Lord did not fight back. By the time the Romans were done with the preclude before the actual crucifixion, the Word says that Jesus, Yeshua, was beaten beyond recognition. Imagine.

     “But many were amazed when they saw him. His face was so disfigured, he seemed hardly human, and from His appearance, one would scarcely know he was a man.” – Isaiah 53:14 (a prophecy of the coming Messiah) NLT

     Now, then, what are we going to do about it? How are we going to live in response to this? When I stand before the One who was pierced will my life be a “thank you” and praise of adoration for what He did? I hope so. The gross images of Christ beatings in film may help us defeat the flesh. The next time temptation comes let's visualize our Lord in that state – a man that does not look human. Would we dare to choose Satan?

Monday, May 20, 2013

Devastation in Oklahoma: A Response

     All of us have a mix of questions, thoughts and emotions going through our being as we watch the coverage of the massive tornado that hit Moore, Oklahoma today. It is heart wrenching, shocking and traumatic on so many levels. And it is completely valid and acceptable to feel and think what we are thinking and feeling.
     Thousands of years ago, a worship song was written by the sons of Korah and given to the Chief Musician in King David's court. It is very applicable to today's horror.

     "As the deer pants for the water brooks, so pants my soul for You, O God, My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When shall I come and appear before God? My tears have been my food day and night, while they continually say to me, 'Where is your God?' 

     When I remember these things I pour out my soul within me. For I used to go with the multitude; I went with them in the house of God, with the voice of joy and praise, with a multitude that kept a pilgrim feast. 

     Why are you cast down oh my soul? And why are you disquieted within me? Hope in God. for I shall yet praise Him. For the help of His countenance. 

     O my God, my soul is cast down within me, Therefore I will remember You from the land of the Jordan. And from the heights of Hermon, From the Hill Mizar. Deep calls unto deep at the noise of Your waterfalls, all your waves and billows have gone over me. 

     The Lord will command His loving-kindness in the day time, And in the night His song will be with me - A prayer to the God of my life. I will say to God my Rock, 'Why have you forgotten me? Why do I go mourning because of the oppression of the enemy?' As with a breaking of my bones, my enemies reproach me, while they say to me all day long, 'Where is your God?' 

     Why are you cast down, O my soul? And, why are you disquieted within me? Hope in God. For I will yet praise Him, the help of my countenance and my God." - Psalm 42

     Translated into today's language it basically says: "God!! Where are you!!? All I do everyday is cry. I used to go to church and praise you. But I am wrecked!! I can only praise you in hope that You will help me. You will be with me during this time even when I ask You my Rock, 'Why have you forgotten me?' All those people I proclaim Your greatness to, oppress me and challenge me by asking, 'Where is your God?' I am wrecked. Even still, I will praise You, my help and my God." 

     There are going to be things that happen on this earth God allows that we will never understand; things that hurt and make us upset with the Lord. When tragedy strikes the test of faith begins. We must press through with faith in the midst of the feelings we are experiencing. God is faithful to listen and receive us in our hurt. Then, He will lead us by His still waters and restore our soul.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Over Comer! That's You!

     "Stop being so lackadaisical!"
     This was a quote my basketball team and I would hear on occasion from our coach when he felt that we were not putting in 100% during practice, being lazy. We had a goal to win the C.I.F. Championship and embark to become the State Champions. The road would be long to the State Tournament. This was a mountain to climb. There would be challenges and obstacles. Our skills would be stretched to the maximum of our present potential. Our relationships on the court had to become a fine tuned orchestra that was in perfect harmony, unity and flow.
     What a rewarding year that was for us! We won our league championship, several tournaments and won the C.I.F. Championship. We made it all the way to the Semi Finals in the State Championship before we were defeated. Though we did not make it to the Finals and take State, we were so excited about our accomplishments and all we had overcome. We were thankful for our coach and knew that his phrase pushed us to the excellence we needed to attain to reach our goals.
     The lessons learned on my basketball team in high school have been used by the Lord to help me in my journey as a disciple of Christ. And, whenever I start complaining about a circumstance or situation that I think is too hard and don't want to push through, I hear my coaches phrase in his sarcastic joking tone when he was kidding around with us. It makes me laugh at myself and gives me endurance to continue.
     God has called us to overcome. Overcoming takes perseverance, tenacity, discipline and no room for being lackadaisical. It isn't easy, but we have to remember that with God all things are possible. The mountain ahead of you to climb may look hard, may appear to be to steep, even dangerous; yet you can do all things through Christ who strengthens you! 
     Let the following verses minister to your heart. Believe what the Lord is saying, receive it and act on it. Whatever is in front of you God has allowed or placed there Himself so you can fulfill His word. You must overcome something to be an over comer. So, lock arms with Jesus and grab the wings of the Spirit of God. They are your companions. As long as you do not quit, give up or throw in the towel, They will make sure you do not fail. 

     "For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world - our faith. Who is he who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the son of God?" - I John 5:4-5

     "Do not be overcome with evil, but overcome evil with good." - Romans 12:21


Thursday, May 16, 2013

For the Mama's and the Papa's

     One of the craziest chores I had as a child was cleaning the base boards in our home. My mom had a particular way that she wanted it done. And, you know, they just had to be white, well egg shell. Anyway, my sisters and I had regular chores we did each Saturday morning and then additional ones assigned by my mom every once in awhile. Whenever it came time to clean the base boards I would do it with all kinds of questions on my mind. Yet, the two prominent were one, why can't Hattie (our house keeper) do it? And two, who cares?!! Like who comes to a home and looks at the base boards?
     There were other tedious chores I had that as a child and young person I did not appreciate as I do now. I learned so many lessons regarding my chores and household responsibilities. One lesson I take with it is connected to the following verse:

     "And if you have not been faithful in what is another man's, who will give you what is your own." - Luke 16:12

     I can testify to being a faithful servant to those in authority over me and reaping the reward of following the Lord's advice. Unfortunately, I have witnessed, first hand, many people crippled by not following the instruction of Christ. Often times I see that it is poor, gutless parenting that causes their own children to miss out on being put over much and having their own. 
     It amazes me how many children run their parents and their household and the parent walks around with their tail between their legs because they don't want to discipline their sons and daughters. This lack of leadership can lead to the demise of their children and grandchildren.True, some children are resilient and without the leadership of the parents find that leadership in others or due to their God-given gift of self-discipline are able to find somewhere to be faithful. However, that is a small number of the population.
     No one likes to bring a strong consequence to a child or cause tears as result of not yielding to their wants. I tell you the truth, the tears a parent hears as a result of discipline and instruction will wane in comparison to the tears shed by the parent when the child grows into an adult they worry about leaving at death because the child can't care for themselves or anything that comes into their hands. In order for all of us to grow in anything we must be faithful in the little first. This is a spiritual law. There is no way around it. 
      But God is good! He is so great! If you are one who has not had discipline, leadership in your home that refused to make you to submit to anything or reneged on promised consequences, it is not too late. Throw yourself before the mercy seat of Heaven and ask God Almighty to father you, to raise you up in His way. He is faithful and will make sure that under His wind and instruction you will grow and live the life He has written out for you to live. The way may be long and challenging at times but, it comes with great reward!
     Having parents is the training ground for submitting to the authority of God and taking care of what is His, which is everything. If you are a parent of young ones, give them responsibility in your home. Make them do their own homework. Do not allow them to degrade, dishonor or disrespect their teachers in word or deed. And, like me, your child will be grateful for the lessons learned while at home, because in their heart he or she will know it has prepared them for their journey to their eternal Home - Heaven. And, ready to receive the 'much' in store for them while on earth.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Victory is Yours!

In a conversation with His disciples the topic turned to who people were saying Jesus was. The Lord then asked His disciples, "Who do you say that a I am?"
Peter answered from revelation of the Holy Spirit that the Lord was the Messiah, the Son of God. Yet, what about now? Who is Jesus to you? Most of us know that Jesus was born, lived, died, rose and sits at the right hand of the Father. But, who is He now, today? How is working in our lives?
We must come to a right understanding that Christ is a conquering King who is Savior and Lord forever; and who will return to this earth to reign as King. His Kingdom is established for eternity and will never be defeated. He is powerful and that power resides in those who have accepted His sacrifice and made Him Lord over their life. Therefore, the following verses are true indeed.

"I am filled with power - with the Spirit of the Lord." - Micah 3:8

"You are of God, little children, and have overcome them, because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world." - I John 4:4

You have the victor living inside of you. That victor went into hell and took the keys from the enemy, rose from the dead and allowed at least 40 witnesses watch Him ascend into Heaven. The Lord is not a baby in the manger anymore. He has risen victorious and is coming back the King of kings and Lord of lords. When you invited him to reside in your heart He brought His resurrection power with Him. The battle belongs to the Lord in you. You have the victor and that makes you victorious!

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Drama... For Real

     Drama! Drama, drama, drama. Just watched a movie about a guy who was conspired against by men who were jealous of him. This guy, who was good and was the favorite of his leader, fell into his enemies trap. During the night of the good guy's execution the leader used his authority to try to stop it. Miraculously, the execution did not take place. However, those who conspired against the leader's favorite were met with the punishment they planned for him at the command of the leader.
     King Cyrus said, "Throw them into the lion's den."
     I don't remember my Sunday School lessons of Daniel and the Lion's Den, The Flood and Noah's Ark, Samson and Delilah and The Parting of the Red Sea so horrific, final. Maybe the reason why the church leaves these stories for the children to sing about and learn is because the details and deeper meanings are hard to swallow. 
     Think about it. Samson was the first Superman, only real. His physical strength is unprecedented. Under the direction of the Spirit of God, this Judge of Israel, slew a thousand men with the jawbone of a donkey.  Earlier, God flooded the entire world leaving only one family to survive. After Moses and the Israelites made it across the Red Sea, they watched God collapse the walls of water created by the split on top of their enemies. The army chasing them was destroyed. Daniel was spared. An angel came down and shut the mouths of the lions.
     Watching these stories unfold in film is amazing to me. It allows me to see the things in the Word I didn't before. SIDE NOTE: Whenever you watch dramatization of a biblical story have your Bible with you. Hollywood is doing us a great service. I am thankful for the movies made that bring the Bible to life. However, sometimes corners are cut due to money and time. Be sure that what you are seeing holds true to the sound doctrine. Anyway, film can be an excellent learning tool while studying the scriptures.
     The best drama is always a true story. That's why reality TV is competing with fictitious episodes. So, dig into the Word of God. It's awesome how the Lord has laid His plan through such a beautiful story of love for us. It has everything in it that is drama because God has chosen to work through fallible men and women. Want a good story? Looking for some intrigue or drama? Read the Bible. It's real. It's alive. And, it's for you.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Just Whatcha Need

     One of my favorite things to do is going to a day spa. It is so fun! Massages, body wraps, pedicures, manicures, jacuzzi, pool, all the fresh water you can drink... I love it! I go as often as time and money will afford to get pampered. 
     During one of my visits I planned to have a body wrap, skin scrub, massage, mani and pedi. When I went in to have my massage and body wrap done the massage therapist surprised me. After working on my back for five minutes she stopped and had me sit up. She explained that my back was "a mess." 
     "I know you want to get a body wrap and scrub, but that is not what you need right now. It is going to take me 90 minutes to work all the knots out of your muscles," she continued that my skin was fine and did not need attention, but my back did. 
     While she spoke and explained that there would be no change in fees it would be an even swap, I really was not hearing her. This was not what I wanted. I arranged and paid for the services I wanted and am being told that my plan is not the right plan for me. In addition, the massage was to be followed up with some instruction to maintain the healing. 
     Wait!! Healing!?? Then I started paying attention to the instruction. I had to go back and forth into the jacuzzi while drinking an insane amount of water. All this was to flush out toxins that had built up in my body and prevent my back from knotting up again. I was also advised to take up Pilates to help strengthen my back and shoulder muscles. In a nutshell, I was injured and had no idea how my muscles got so tense and out of shape.
      I took her advice non enthusiastically.  To my surprise after the massage and then the final round of jacuzzi and water I felt so good! My back felt relaxed!! I just didn't realize that over time it had become a problem. I kept telling my friend, Nicole Fitzpatrick, who was with me that day, "Wow, I can't believe how my back feels. It feels great!" The awesome sister in the Lord she is told me where to get Pilates and I went with her to a session.
     We all know in our minds and have heard that what we want is not always what we need. The knowledge doesn't make it easy to adhere to. God is a good God who wants to provide us with all that we need. Once we receive and embrace what we need versus what our wants are we will find that the provision given was far better than the thing we just wanted to have. Sometimes we will get what we want. However, when God gives what we need it is beyond what we could have imagined or hoped for.

     "Now to Him is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine according to His power that is at work within us, to Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever, Amen." - Ephesians 3:20-21

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Got a Bossy Boss?

     "The king's heart is in the hand of the LORD, Like the rivers of water; He turns it wherever He wishes." - Proverbs 21:1

     Your leader can do nothing to you that will interrupt His destiny for you. Pharaoh did not want to let His people go. Haman wanted Mordacai hung. Jezebel was determined to kill Elijah. Joseph was put in prison for a false accusation. This only catapulted him to a place positioning him to go into his calling. Isn’t it a blessing that we can rest knowing that the decisions our leader, boss or director make regarding us is from the Lord. He knows the plans He has for us. As long as we are determined and yearn for His will in our life nothing and no one can stop His plan from happening for us.

     We can rest assured that God is on the move even in the midst of evil rulers. We have excellent examples to follow from David to Daniel to Christ Himself. What man means for evil, God will use for the good of those who love Him. Endure and persevere with faith that your God, the Great and Mighty One will save. Pass the test of having an evil leader by maintaining integrity, holiness, righteousness and good character evidencing Christ in your life. Have peace and joy knowing that God is using all circumstances to bring blessing to you and glory to Himself.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

DADDY'S Got a Shot Gun

Growing up in Southern California very close to the beach, we had items that represented that culture around our home. Sunscreen on counters, surfboards and boogy boards in the garage, swimsuits in dresser drawers, many beach towels, flip flops and my dad's diving equipment were an essential to the life we were living. Totally different from where I live today in Austin, Texas. I came face to face with that difference on many occasions. One was through a friend of mine, Dan Gattis. Dan is a godly man who was a leader in our singles ministry at church and offered his home for us to have a leadership mini-retreat. We make our way to Dan's home that is in the boonies. 
It was a pleasant home; very warm and inviting until I start noticing things. Instead of sunscreen on the counter there were spurs. Real ones that he actually wears on his cowboy boots. This was not western decor. Near this counter top is a sliding glass door looking to his back yard. I look and see, right there just on the other side of the glass a cow. A real life cow right there, I could walk out and touch it. Next, I don't see any surfboards up against the walls but, hanging on the wall like a trophy was a shot gun. So, the awesome So. Cal gal I am took out a camera and started taking pictures. I was amazed. First, there was a cow in the back yard very close to the house. Second, spurs... hmmmm. And, then, the shot gun. Crazy!!! I was like Dan, you're a man of God! Uuuuhhh what's with the gun? 
Do you know later that night there was something out there howling. It was super dark, no street lights or city lights so it was hard to see. At the sound of the howling, Dan grabs a shot gun and runs outside as he says a sentence. The only word I remember in the sentence was, "coyotes." That threw me. Wow!! Coyotes?! 
Anyway, that night my understanding of how a real ranch operates had been enlightened. The owner cares for, feeds and provides for the livestock on his property. The livestock is very vulnerable at night and becomes prey to predators. The owner is aware of the danger that stalks his investment and will protect it. Any predator that crosses the line is faced with a serious consequence. Now consider the following verse.

"Go your way; behold, I send you out as lambs among wolves." - Luke 10:3

Friends, we are the livestock and the enemy the coyote seeking to devour us. We are faced with a society that continues to strive to stamp out the truth of the gospel and keep us from sharing it. As American society continues to embrace immorality and practices that are displeasing to the Lord, the plight to share the gospel of peace will become more challenging. That challenge will be met with tenacity and determination to tell the Truth without fear. Be driven to boldness for Christ with the knowledge that He who sits on the throne protects and guards His children. Nothing is done to you on the planet without His foreknowledge and plan of action to make you stronger, demonstrate His power or both. If we are like lambs then the Most High is our Shepherd indeed; and in His hands is a shot gun aimed at those who seek to devour the redeemed. And, his aim is spot on. He never misses.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Blown Cover

     Recently, I was at a Reasons to Believe meeting. Reasons to Believe is a national ministry that focuses on sharing scientific research, theory and evidence that points to the fact that God exists. My husband and I are members of our local chapter and enjoy coming together with doctor's of science to hear how their research and the research of others points to God.
     As we are taking our seat a man comes in and sits next to us. He is a tall white guy; looks to be in his 30's. His jeans are kind of worn and his t-shirt is sloppy. His hair looks greasy. It could have been gel, but it was a toss up. In addition, his skin was clammy. He wasn't sweating like a pig but, he had the glow of funk - know what I mean? Anyway, he did not look like he belonged to the group. To me he looked as if he could possibly be homeless or in a bad way financially/economically.
     The lesson taught by an astrophysicist ended and our chapter president gets up and shares his excitement for the speaker for the next meeting. He goes on and on about this awesome doctor of genetics that is going to discuss DNA and how it relates to humans being created versus evolved. He goes on to say how happy he is that the scientist is present and asks the person to stand. At that moment, the guy I thought might be homeless stands up.
     At that precise moment I was embarrassed of my false perception while hearing my mother's words in my head simultaneously, "Never judge a book by it's cover." Can you say, conviction? Even though I never said what my my thoughts were I was ashamed and regretted my thinking.
     Has anyone had this experience? Or have you looked at someone and made a definite decision about who they are, what they are about etc? Or maybe there is someone in your midst that you just don't understand. They don't fit in your box of expectations. They're a weirdo. Come on. I'm just bein' real. 
    Newsflash. The cover is a set up. The cover tests the person with it and others. What you see does not reveal the heart and we know from God's word that only He knows the heart of a man. Our vision is so narrow, especially when it comes to others. 
     Join with me in praying for those we don't understand. Pray that God will bless them, speak to them and bring them into their destiny. Pray that the Lord would release anointing over their gifts and that they would shine brightly bringing glory to His name. Pray that the Holy Spirit will be there to guide the person and God would protect the person. Ask God to give you His heart for the person.
     When we begin to pray for those that have  a crazy cover and invest in the pages written on the heart by God through prayer, the cover won't matter anymore because in the process our heart will be changed. We will begin to see people as Jesus sees them. Their cover will be blown and we will get to see and maybe experience who they really are.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Back in the Groove

     Have you ever jumped into doing something you hadn't done in a long time, but thought your performance would be as if you never stopped? Well, that happened to me. I became in love with being in water very young. Living in Southern California I was around swimming pools and the beach year round. In addition, I lived with a competitive swimmer who also lived his life work as an L.A. County Ocean Lifeguard. I learned to swim well at an early age and was body surfing on waves by 9 or 10 years old. 

     Even though I had not gone swimming in yeeeaaarrrsss, I thought I was a champ. Last summer, I asked my dad to help me out with a work out while visiting their home. After suiting up, I went in the back yard, jumped in the pool and waited for my dad, the coach, to come and help a sista' begin the journey of getting in shape. Cake! I'm a great swimmer, this is going to be easy breezy.

     My dad gave me the FIRST directives. I came up for air like I had never breathed before. I was huffing and puffing; had my hands on my hips, bending over trying to catch my breath. I was dying you guys, like literally. I looked at my dad and was like, "I can't breathe, I can't breathe." He let me rest.

     Long story short, after three days of being in the pool every morning with the coach giving me directives to build my wind up and my speed my dad say's, "Okay, do the next 200 yards easy and when you're done I'll show you where you're swimming wrong."

     "What??!!" I jumped up out of the water, "What do you mean I'm swimming wrong!??!" I was all bent out of shape (no pun intended) with an attitude looking at my dad like, "You're trippin' I know how to swim." Lovingly, like the great dad he is, he let me know that I was not swimming properly; my stroke was off. Ya'll I had to re-learn how to do a "baby stroke" but, I was out of shape and had not done it  in a long time. My pride was hurt and I had to humble myself and remember that I was dealing with a REAL swimmer; a lifer if you know what I mean.

     Though this is a true account there is an underlying message. It's a parable. So, let me ask you some questions. How's your swim? When is the last time you got in the pool and swam? How's your stroke? Are you in relationship with THE Coach to learn the ways of the water and currents? Are you playin' in the pool, just splashin' around or can you compete for the prize? 

    Here is the good news. If you are just splashin' around or been out of the water for some time, THE Coach is still on the deck waiting for you. He wants you to get serious and learn the stroke for your life that will produce results benefiting the Kingdom. It is never too late. As long as you are here you can become mature in your walk with Jesus. If you have been away, come back. Give yourself a chance to familiarize yourself again with the church, God's Word and His ways. THE Coach is waiting for you. So jump in! The water is fine!


Monday, May 6, 2013

It's Not Tricky

1.                  "And my speech and my preaching were not with persuasive words of human wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, that your faith should not be in the wisdom of men but in the power of God." - 1 Corinthians 2:4-5

Isn’t it good to know that the Holy Spirit will give us the words to speak when we are sharing Jesus. Many bible scholars teach that Moses had a speech impediment and the Lord used Him mightily. Moses spoke with authority to Pharaoh and lead the children of Israel out of bondage. The Word tells us in Proverbs that if we ask, God will give us wisdom freely. The Lord will be with us to gather the souls He purchased at Calvary. Bible College is not a prerequisite to the great commission. 

Be assured that we are sent with the great Helper, the Holy Spirit, to assist us in speaking on behalf of the kingdom. He has already gone before you. Your divine appointments with the lost are in the hands of God. Each day ask the Lord to prepare your heart and bring all words and answers you will need for the day for His plan and purpose. And, He will. It's that simple.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Today's Headlines... in the Bible?

     "The burden against Damascus, 'Behold, Damascus will cease from being a city. And, it will be a ruinous heap." - Isaiah 17:1

     I have no idea if the above verse is being played out in current events or not. Only time will tell. This is the quick point. God's word is solid. If He said it will happen, it will. As biblical prophecy unfolds in our lifetime we can cling to Jesus' counsel:

     "When you hear of wars and commotions, do not be terrified; for these things must come to pass first, but the end will not come immediately." - Luke 21:9

     Biblical prophecy is clear. As we get closer to the return of Christ, things are going to get crazy; even here in the United States. However, we have the fruit of the spirit and the peace that surpasses all understanding. It is imperative that the spirit rules our flesh and that faith overtakes fear. We have to adhere to the teachings of perseverance, patience and endurance of  trials and tribulations, knowing that our very life is in God's hands. Nothing will come upon us that the Lord will not use for our own personal growth or the growth of others or the furtherance of His Kingdom.

     God sits on the throne and is in control. Nothing happens without His foreknowledge of it. We serve and awesome, mighty God who holds the future. And, He is a good God that has decided to let us in on it. Be encouraged. Have faith and know that times may be uncertain but, we can be certain that current events point to the glorious event of our Savior's return.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

In the Know

      "For who has known the mind of the LORD that he may instruct Him? But we have the mind of Christ." - 1 Corinthians 2:15

     Say out loud, “I have the mind of Christ.” Now breathe it in. Inhale that truth. Now, think of this. Jesus said, “No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; for I have called you friends, for all things that I heard from My Father, I have made known to you.John 15:15. I am convinced now the reason the Son does not know the day or hour of His return is because He would tell it. This is a hunch.

    These verses empower you to tap into eternal wisdom. You are linked to Heaven and its secrets. You are connected to the knowledge of Almighty God! If you need an answer or idea, ask God to reveal it to you and it will come to your mind. Using the knowledge that put the stars in place and created the exchange of breath between people and plants will surely bring success and favor. Use it. You have it!

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

You are... NOT the tail!

"And the Lord will make you the head and not the tail; you shall be above only, and not beneath if you heed the commandments of the Lord your God, which I command you today, and are careful to observe them." - Deuteronomy 28:13

What an awesome promise!! Being a follower of God and keeper of His commands makes you the head. So, how do we obey God's word in a world and society that is set against it? Be inspired with this piece of advice I received from John Paul Jackson, founder and director of Streams Ministries International. He said that when we sin we choose to have something in common with Satan. So, let's not have anything in common with him. Jesus told the woman at the well to go and sin no more. There was no therapy session or support group. She turned and evangelized her town bringing her neighbors to Christ. 

We have to understand that when temptation comes to cause us to go against what the Lord would have us do, we choose whether to fall into or not. Satan can't make you do anything. He's just very suggestive. Falling into temptation does happen, but let's work really hard to defeat it. Be strong. Be more adamant to stand than the enemy is to have you fall. When we stand against the wiles of the enemy and overcome what he dishes out we live out the following verses:

"Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us." - Romans 8:37

"For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments. And His commandments are not burdensome. For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world - our faith." - I John 5:3-4

So, stay in God's word, trust it, follow it and see the favor of the Lord in your life. Whether a Janitor or Executive, Athlete or Coach, Nurse or Physician, Teacher or Principal, Accountant or Politician, our Lord will lift you up. As a person in the C.I.A. (Christ Intelligence Agency,) your title is a set-up for the lost to get saved, the hurting to be healed, the fool to gain wisdom and the chained to be set free. Be bold with the Light of Christ in you. Walk with confidence that your Head, Jesus Christ, has given you the right disguise while a way from our Home to be an influence in and for His Kingdom.