Archive for the ‘Purposely Unique’ Category

copied from Simple Reminders

copied from Simple Reminders

The older I get the more I realize that I am just not comfortable in groups of people. It is just much simpler for me to stay home than to go to a social gathering. There are times I want to catch up with old friends and enjoy a cup of coffee and a dessert but I find it a daunting tasks to do so.  Most of the time I force myself to put it on my calendar because socializing is out of my comfort zone. Long after the event is over it isn’t important what I wore or how awkward I felt but that I made room for someone or something I enjoy.

I need to learn how to make time for people who need me by making time in my heart and in my home. Time is something we all have and yet everyone has a need for our time. For me to sit selfishly in my home because that is where I am comfortable, is not allowing the Holy Spirit to use me where I am needed.

I am reminded of this verse and He promises me that His presence is with me whether I am comfortable or not. John 14: 16 And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; 17 Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.

Being sociable is almost always an inconvenience. Being with those who need us is not about my own comfort but it’s about making others feel safe and happy with where they are. Jesus made time for everyone, for all types of people—friends; whether rich or poor, people who betrayed Him, strangers and foreigners, the little ones, and so many more. Making time for others was a character of His ministry.

Jesus didn’t die on the cross for me to be comfortable but for me to be conformed to His image. Me being conformed to His image is me taking time to give to others…comfortable or not.

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love

Christ calls us to become His image- to reach out to a hurting world and bring His Spirit to that world.  We’ve had too many years of talking – it’s time to get  busy. Let’s pray for His leadership and direction so we can go out and live His love. The world needs you. The world needs HIM!

Mark 12:29-31 29 And Jesus answered him, The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord: 30 And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment. 31 And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these.
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We as Christians are to reflect the heart of Christ, to love the way He loves.  If we do not love with the love of Christ then all we do is a hypocritical devotion, flowery language and our church attendance and such are just empty gestures. God did not want us to attend church on Sunday and turn our back to the pain in this world the rest of the time. He wants us to seek justice for the mentally ill, to protect the defenseless, to set captives free, to live a life of compassion and unselfishness.

Too often we stress on saying and believing the right things, that we turn a blind eye to our piousness and conceit. We have a lack of compassion for the hurting. We have become legalistic and satisfied with our devotion and our good works that we develop an attitude of superiority towards those we deem to be less righteous than ourselves.

Matt. 15:8 This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoureth me with their lips; but their heart is far from me.

Is it any wonder too many of the world run from us?

We take pride in doing and saying all the right things, but we are absolutely lacking any joy, peace, gentleness, or any love. In the first century, people would exclaim, We tend to forget our real spiritual goal should be to live closer to God and have him form in us the character of the heart Christ. We, as Christians should die daily to our self and learn to love the way Christ loved. If we are truly filled with His Spirit it should be evident in our lives.

Galatians 5:22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, 23 Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.

Jesus told his disciples a very clear plan that others would recognize them. He didn’t say it was all this legalistic stuff, it is not your church attendance, how you tote your Bible BUT it is how you love!

John 13:34 A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. 35 By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.

We are so full of dramatization even in our church services and our lives. We want God to be awe stricken with our fancy worship and slick tongued sermons. Why do we spend so much time talking about what we allegedly believe yet so little time living it. Why are we satisfied with following rituals yet neglecting our heart.

Why are we so content with our empty gestures?

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Ever thought ‘If I could just get a break!” So many times we think it is the ‘Big Break’ that will ‘Open the Door’ to success in life. Or maybe because we came from ‘The wrong side of the Tracks’ is what we blame for holding us back. Maybe blame the family you were born in or ‘I’m the black Sheep’ philosophy. ‘If only’… things had been different in my life… (more…)

I have decided there will always be someone who is prettier than me. There will always be someone with a bigger house, more friends, better clothes, a better job, and more money than me. There are some that seem to value success on the wealth of a person, judge their value on their looks or the success on their accomplishments.

I was never really interested in trying to be better than another in outward appearance but I see more and more that it is important to some. What I do see is when we fix our eyes on those qualities it makes our relationships with others turn into power struggles. I have seen some that have spent so many fruitless days wanting or trying to measure up to someone else.

Coming from my background, I spent my life never being smart enough, never being beautiful enough, never being the one family or friends wanted, never having my worth defined by wealth, status, or success. But according to what I read in the Scripture it is very clear what is valuable to God. He isn’t mentioning the words like success, wealth, clothes, or jobs but clearly it says what the Spirit will produce in one’s life and heart, “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance:…”Galatians 5:22-23  And these things are available to everyone. That is the part I love about God. He offers it to everyone!

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lipsDo you know how it feels to be kissed yesterday and killed with another kind of kiss today?  Let me explain just how that happens.

If you have lived very long you have realized there are two things that will separate your real friends from the others: adversity and money. When one or the other comes into the friendship, our true friends will be there to uphold us as they have consistently in the past. Those who are not-so-true will either leave or suddenly become distant.

The very same thing happened to Jesus. He was close to twelve men that He chose to be His disciples. They all claimed that they would never forsake him but they did. Even worse is that one betrayed Him with a kiss. Jesus knew and He asked, ” Judas, betrayest thou the Son of man with a kiss? Luke 22:47-48

Proverbs 27:6  “Faithful are the wounds of a friend; but the kisses of an enemy are deceitful.”  Usually we get that “gut instinct” when someone is faking their friendship but we just don’t want to believe it! … Or in other words – we are being “kissed by the enemy.” As much as we hurt when we realize it, keep in mind it happened to Jesus too. When the actions of our friends appear to be one thing but they have hidden intentions, then we are being “kissed by the enemy.”

When you are “kissed by the enemy” then their true feelings are revealed about you. When you don’t respond to them the way they want you to, you find out what they really think about you. Many will run down the list of your flaws and throw the secrets that you have shared with them back in your face. It used to grieve me and cause extreme pain. I would cry and feel horrible and guilty as if maybe I somehow caused this. My heart would close down and I would make vows that I would never let another person inside to hurt me. In the past, I have lost trust towards people and become bitter and withdrawn. As I have grown spiritually, I’ve learned that this is life and to trust my own God given instincts. Not all people are who they say they are!

I pray that I always treat people with the upmost respect and integrity regardless… of how many I have been “kissed by the enemy.” True Friends

I posted this (as a note) on my facebook page about a year ago.  The older I get the more patience I have with some things and the less patience I have with others.  Go figure!  I know I would be a much better mother today but I would be much less tolerant of racism and ignorance!

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Hugs for the morning!

If you meet me in person you will discover … I’m a hugger. For real. Not sure if it’s my friendly Kentucky heritage or just a natural, God-given trait, but I hug. I hug people I know well and I hug strangers. I hug. I just hug.  Look at Spencer’s sweet face 🙂 His sparkly eyes tell you just how much he loves that hug and I love his hug too!

My husband and I just got back from a 5 day trip and I got the best hugs from old friends, wonderful new friends, and a whole lot of people in a Rescue Mission. What a refreshing trip it was for us. God so Blessed! ~Jen