Friday, July 4, 2014

No Fishing!

God has been teaching me for a while about something I have, all too often, experienced in my life. I've been writing things down as He reveals them to me and sort of keeping them to myself, but I'm sharing now because maybe others can benefit from the valuable lessons He is teaching me. I hope it helps someone. It sure has been life-changing for me, so here goes.

I recently heard a clip where the Christian music artist, Michael W. Smith, said that he prays to never be offended by anyone again. That's a great example of putting on his armor and giving control to God. Satan can't tear us down if we deflect his arrows with God's grace and truth. I've been praying and learning how to better do that very thing.

People ask me how I cannot be offended by the words and actions of others. My answer is simply that Jesus bids me to bring those offenses to Him and surrender them and my thoughts and feelings to Him. As a Christ follower, I could become so offended by this world and its attitude and actions toward people who love and follow God. I would have every reason to cry, both inwardly and outwardly, but I refuse that route. I once read that taking offense at others is the bait of satan. I have learned that that concept is all too accurate. He dangles the carrots of doubt, confusion, lies, and hurt feelings which tend to result in gossip and misunderstandings. It doesn't take long for us unsuspecting souls to take the bait - hook, line, and sinker - only to find our relationships with others and God wrought with division and strife. Satan laughs while we cry and lose valuable friends and family to the havoc he has caused. He goes fishing in our minds and lives and has us for dinner! I see it often; I've fallen for it myself! But I'm so grateful God is renewing my mind and giving me a better, clearer perspective and a healthier, new way to think and respond.

God transforms my offenses into opportunities of reconciliation and growth when I take them to Him and believe His Word and follow His truths. It's amazing that who and what I believe plays out so clearly in how I act and live. What I believe determines my feelings. I choose to believe that God has a better way for me than to continue going down the dead-end route of taking offense. I'm learning more and more to take it to God to process and follow His biblical route. God's way is for me to attempt to be reconciled, when possible, to the person causing me concern. I'm putting up a "No Fishing" sign. Take that bait elsewhere, satan! I'm not biting anymore!

The best result I am experiencing from God's transformation in me is that He is changing the way I think and that changes the way I feel. Well played, God!

Thursday, July 3, 2014

One year ago today, my heart expanded. One year ago today, I became a Nana to Carson. One year ago today, my world changed forever.

I celebrate the birth of my first grandchild today and everyday. He is in my prayers daily and in my heart constantly. My dreams for this child are BIG. Big in the sense that I want him to be as blessed by God as humanly possible and to be the greatest blessing he can possibly be to God and to others in this world.

Carson's parents and grandparents love Jesus. My prayer is that Carson sees Jesus in all of us and falls in love with His creator at a very early age. The choice will be his, but I believe he is chosen to be brave and courageous, to be a leader in all things good. I know he is a little boy, and a busy one, at that, but he is God's boy and I entrust him to the ONE who made him.

I celebrate Carson today and I celebrate the Creator who made him. Make him great for you, LORD, and let that precious smile become a light for Jesus that comes from a heart that knows You and loves You! I love you, sweet Carson, and this post is dedicated to you.