Saturday, July 5, 2014

He is your advocate.

I remember a time when lies were spoken about me.

It was a difficult time. I had just had the carpet ripped out from underneath me as my marriage was de-solving before my eyes. All of the 7 years and 3 kids later I was just trying to keep my head above water. Trying to please everyone and do the dishes.  Then one day I hear, ‘this isn’t going to work’. Wow. So as the weeks go by in a cloud of dismay, I suddenly hear from friends at the church we attended that there are lies being spoken about me regarding our marriage and who I am as a person. This is devastating. Why?, after all the hurt and abandonment would lies be spoken about me too? This didn’t make sense. Why additional hurt and daggers? I have been trying to raise our children and make my husband happy for years as I put my own needs aside and now, not only abandonment, but bad things are being said about me? It was so absurd that it was difficult sometimes not to just laugh. And laughing is what I needed at the time for sure.  A little less stress would have been nice, so laughing is actually a little of what I did and then I went to the Lord.

“In the morning, O Lord, you hear my voice; in the morning I lay my requests before you and wait in expectation.   You are not a God who takes pleasure in evil; with you the wicked cannot dwell. The arrogant cannot stand in your presence; you hate all who do wrong. You destroy those who tell lies; bloodthirsty and deceitful men the Lord abhors. 
But, I, by your great mercy, will come into your house; in reverence will I bow down toward your holy temple. Lead me, O Lord, in your righteousness because of my enemies-- make straight your way before me.” ~ Psalm 5:3-8

I cried to God and He reminded me that He was and is my advocate. He was to defend me and no one else.  I was to rest in Him. This was not easy. I wanted so much to defend myself and go talking to anyone that may be believing the lies. However, I stepped back and stayed out of it. The Lord reminded me that he always brings the truth to the surface by what people are actually doing. I had kids to take care of and things to figure out and I did not need to be worrying about what people thought of me. I had no time for that. He also reminded me that my true friends would stand by me and those believing lies are obviously in the dark and not being true friends. I carried on. 

“Not a word from their mouth can be trusted; their heart is filled with destruction. Their throat is an open grave; with their tongue they speak deceit. Declare them guilty, O God!  Let their intrigues be their downfall. Banish them for their many sins, for they have rebelled against you. "

But let all who take refuge in you be glad; let them ever sing for joy. Spread your protection over them, that those who love your name may rejoice in you. For surely, O Lord, you bless the righteous; you surround them with your favor as with a shield.” ~ Psalm 5:9-12

I began to rest and trust in my Savior and Lord. He walked beside me and helped me not just get through each day, but also find joy in Him throughout my days.  I encourage you to trust in God to be your advocate this day. Trust Him to take you through and bring you through with joy! Rest in Him this day. Read Psalm 5 again and again and be reminded of his care and love for you. Trust Him to take care of those people and things in your life that you have no control over and learn to let go. You are surrounded with favor as with a shield loved one, take joy in Him!

Thursday, March 6, 2014


As my Bible was sitting out on the table this week, I came across some verses that reminded me of God's comfort.   As a single mom, I would look for all the verses that really spoke to my situation.  It was good to be broken and turn to God for help during those times. When I didn’t, heartache was all that was left because I was usually trying to take care of everything myself.  May you find comfort in these words as well.

Comfort, comfort my people, 
says your God. 
Speak tenderly to Jerusalem [God’s chosen people/now we are chosen],
and proclaim to her 
that her hard service has been completed [years of slavery],
that her sin has been paid for,
that she has received from the LORD’s hand 
double for all her sins. 

See God’s people [Jerusalem] kept wandering from God’s guidance and God wanted them to come back to Him. He goes on in the next set of verses to prophesy about the coming of Jesus and show His people the hope of their salvation and lives.

You who bring good tidings to Jerusalem, 
lift it up, do not be afraid; 
say to the towns of Judah,
Here is your God! 

He tends his flock like a shepherd; 
He gathers the lambs in his arms
and carries them close to his heart;
he gently leads those that have young. 

I was very grateful for these verses when I was a single mom, they brought great comfort to me to know that Jesus, my Savior, was also my friend and shepherd. He was close to me and took care of me. I did not always know what to do and it was very difficult having no one to talk to about things such as a car repair, moving, going to back to school, purchasing this or that, but God....God was there. 

It also put me in my place to read such passages as....

Who has measured the waters in the hollow of His hand,
or with the breadth of his hand marked off the heavens?
Who has held the dust of the earth in a basket?

I was reminded of His Sovereignty as Ruler of all Mankind when I would read...

He brings princes to naught
and reduces the rulers of this world to nothing.
No sooner are they planted,
no sooner are they sown, 
no sooner do they take root in the ground, 
than He blows on them and they wither,
and a whirlwind sweeps them away like chaff. 

And in all my weariness and tiredness......I would find comfort in these...

Do you not know?
Have you not heard?
the LORD is the everlasting God,
the Creator of the ends of the earth.
He will not grow tired or weary,
and his understanding no one can fathom.
He gives strength to the weary
and increases the power of the weak.
Even youths grow tired or weary, 
and young men stumble and fall;
but those who hope in the LORD
will renew their strength.
They will soar on wings like eagles;
they will run and not grow weary,
they will walk and not be faint. 

~Isaiah 40

My sweet dears that kept me so busy!! :)  This picture is from 2007. :) 

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

No shame.

There once was a young family that lived on the edge of town. The couple had three young children and seemed to live a quiet life. The husband worked daily and the wife stayed home with the youngest two children.   The children loved swinging on the swings in the backyard as it was a daily favorite.  However, sometimes the quiet was too quiet, not enough communication to be healthy and one day things changed.  For days, only a few sips of soup could sustain the wife.  She was now on her own. It seemed all that had held her together had been shattered. She had questions, unpaid bills, no job, 3 children to support, and more than anything else, unrelenting shame.  As a Christian, how could this happen?  This was something she vowed never to allow. How could she face her friends, her church, her parents, her life?  This was just something that does not happen to good people and most of all, Christians. How could she continue and where would she go from here?! The rug had been pulled out from underneath her. 

See this mom had unrealistic expectations. She expected her decision to stay married and love for life to prevail, not realizing that others may not keep promises. This young mom desired to have a perfect family. Well by all means it was her goal in life!!  It was her goal to get married, love her husband and children and live happily ever after.  Well, it worked for Cinderella right?!  All we need is love, right? Just love and snuggle and be happy, all will be well.  No arguing, no fighting, all is calm.  If no arguments, then all must be grand, right?! No disagreements, well, even no communication. No discussion or expression of feelings between spouses in order to even have a disagreement. She slowly began to realize this may not have been as happy or wonderful as she had been disillusioned to believe. Now she wondered if she would ever find love again? Who would want to love her with a past? She felt no hope. 

As time passed, this young mom was blessed with a job right across the street from her home, two of her children were in school now and her youngest was watched by a wonderful lady from church at no cost. God showed his provision and His care in many ways. Sometimes there were bags of groceries on the front porch left for her little family.   God was providing and bringing healing, however, there was one item still bothering this mom.  Shame. This would be with her for always and she did not think she could handle it.  She felt deeply the shame of being divorced and what made it worse was there was no way around it and it seemed like no hope of ever escaping it.  This is not what she wanted and how could any good come of this? 

In her prayer time and with a dear friend/mentor that God brought in her life over the next few years, she began to see God’s hand in this more than she ever thought.  At times she felt abandoned by Him as well.  God began to speak to her in quiet moments.  She would cry about not having the family life she wanted and feeling way too busy and tired to enjoy her children.  The Lord spoke to her about wanting the ‘perfect family’ over wanting Him. He spoke about how life is not about being comfortable or having a perfect family,  but about being shaped into His image, getting to know Jesus so well that she becomes like Him in love, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, self-control, etc.  He would often say to her that He can speak and work in her life, when she is broken.  

This young women was me and I began to embrace change.  God reminded me of the story in which Abraham was called to sacrifice Issac.  I laid down my expectations and hopes in a perfect family and began to hope in God.  I also laid down the shame.  I actually learned to embrace the brokenness in my life, since God told me He was going to use it for good.  He reminded me to have humility and comforted me in the hard times.  He showed me his love by some verses such as, “Fear not, for you will not be put to shame; And do not feel humiliated, for you will not be disgraced; But you will forget the shame of your youth, And the reproach of your widowhood you will remember no more. 5"For your husband is your Maker, Whose name is the LORD of hosts; And your Redeemer is the Holy One of Israel, Who is called the God of all the earth” from Isaiah 54:4.  As I embraced humility and found my joy in God, He was closer than I ever thought possible.  Also, Psalm 25:3, “Indeed, none of those who wait for You will be ashamed.” “Instead of shame and dishonor, you will enjoy a double share of honor. You will possess a double portion of prosperity in your land, and everlasting joy will be yours”, from Isaiah 61:7.  The days I chose to wait on the Lord and listen to Him I found such amazing joy and peace.  I learned my goal was to please the Lord, not those around me. I also found out that God favored me and found no flaw in me.  If I could make those words jump out of the page at you I would!!  Listen to that!!  He has FAVOR for YOU!  AND THERE IS NO FLAW IN YOU!! 

Now this is my story, your story may be different. In my situation, I was abandoned, but you may have been the one abandoning in your relationship.  If so, you may feel convicted and if that is the case, ask the Lord to show you where you may have been wrong, then repent, ask forgiveness and come back under His umbrella of protection. There are always two sides of every story and 2 people in a relationship it was not perfect from either side, such as mine.  The Scripture teaches not to divorce in the first place and everything that can be done should be done to try to keep it together.  However, in cases of immorality, the divorce is allowed by Scripture.  There are more topics on this and many books on the subject, feel free to read this book or others like it.

Here are some more verses to really think about and let become a part of you:

"Blessed is the man who listens to me, Watching daily at my gates, Waiting at my doorposts. 35"For he who finds me finds life And obtains favor from the LORD. Proverbs 8:34-35

Do not let kindness and truth leave you; Bind them around your neck, Write them on the tablet of your heart. 4So you will find favor and good repute In the sight of God and man. 5Trust in the LORD with all your heart And do not lean on your own understanding.…Proverbs 3:4-6

1Whoever loves discipline loves knowledge, But he who hates reproof is stupid. 2A good man will obtain favor from the LORD, But He will condemn a man who devises evil. Proverbs 12-1-2

You are altogether beautiful, my love; there is no flaw in you. Song of Solomon 4:7
As the years went by, I learned to embrace God, embrace change and embrace my children in a new way. I learned to trust God in a way I never had before.  I learned to hold onto my life and my kids with open hands, knowing that God knew what He was doing and was bigger and stronger than I to take care of them.  I grew to love my story.  I grew to embrace the story of brokenness and not be ashamed of my past.  My past is a part of me and it does not determine my worth.  We can feel tainted sometimes in our Christian circles, if we have experienced a divorce, but God says there is no flaw in you.  No flaw!!  You are His and He is yours.  He loves you with an everlasting love and His love endures forever.  Rest in His love for you today. 

Sunday, January 5, 2014

I see you, single moms

Recently reading 'The Beauty of Broken' by Elisa Morgan, I realized I have much to say. Well, let me say I was 'reminded' I have much to say.  I feel as if God has been after me for a while to write to single moms.  I see you around me everyday.  I run into you at the store, at work, or in my own home. I see you as I teach your child at school, I see you at church, I see you as I walk down the street and I am moved.  I am moved deeply. I know your pain.  Often when I see you, there is not enough time to share my heart.  So here is the 'go to' place.  I have a lot to say and it will take a while, so I am going to start a blog at a time.

So, my kids were about 5, 9 and 11 and a dear friend was giving me my 'once a month indulge me because I do nothing for myself' massage in my home, of which I only had about 3-maybe in the whole 10 years. Anyways, as a single mom who has time for a massage right?!  My friend said something in passing that made me curious about the way others viewed me.  She said 'you seem to have it all together'.  At the time, I was like, 'what?!!'  I sure don't feel like I have it all together and what does 'having it all together' even look like?  I was a single mom working 2-3 jobs at a time, barely there for my kids and running all the time playing catchup. Its interesting how others may view us, isn't it?

Well I was trying to do 'it' right. I was trying to raise my kids to know God and see his faithfulness. I was teaching them and talking with them about God, but also falling down by snapping at them from time to time. I was not doing it right by working too much and spending too much time away. I was not doing it right by trusting in myself and not in God a lot of times.

Spiritual: My first encouragement, as you are probably trying to figure out what you are doing to bring income into your home is, trust God. Wait on Him and listen to Him.  Don't fret. If there is one thing that will always take you down the wrong road, it is fretting.  Fretting is worrying and worry is fear. He says, "So do not worry saying 'what shall we eat?' or 'what shall we drink?' or 'what shall we wear?' For pagans run after these things and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness and all these things shall be given to you as well.  Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own."  Matthew 6:31-34  So trust Him.  You may not know the answer, but trust Him first. Then the answer will come. Give Him time to show you He is true, He is provider for you. He is your husband.  Wait on Him for your need.

Practical: If you are working more than one job, pray about it. Figure out how much time you actually have with your child or children and if it is really worth it.  Be creative. Get some cost cutting books from the library and see where you could cut back on your budget.  Make a budget if you don't have one.  You do not 'have' to have everything you want! Be very realistic about what you need and cut out the rest. It won't be forever, but investing in your kids is far more important than a certain home or rental, eating at restaurants, buying a new car, making a 'great' Christmas with lots of toys, etc.  Just imagine what God could show your kids about His character if you waited on Him for what you needed. They would learn His faithfulness and how He provides for his children. Also, you are not entitled to have things a certain way.  There is no entitlement here.  I once thought I was entitled to have those things we all want, a marriage that was amazing, a home that was big and grand, a new car, a beautiful yard and I was somehow a failure if I did not have those things by a certain age.  A lie. One big, fat lie.  You are to be obedient to the Lord and submit to His will, which is to not worry, He sees you.  A few other practical examples of saving money: have a roommate or two, find a cheaper place to stay, cut out cable and internet, make a meal plan with cheap meals on it (mac'n cheese, spaghetti, tacos, soup) and don't buy other stuff when you are at the store!, any of those things you 'always wanted' when you had kids--don't buy them. Wait on God to provide just those things you need and maybe a few surprises!!

Quick glance at God's husbandry:  He gave me a beautiful blue and silver coffee travel mug.  I was wanting a travel mug, I had not said a word to anyone about it. I had not even prayed about it and the next day, there it was.  It was given to me. He will bless you too.  Trust Him.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Words 2.12.2013

"Reckless words pierce like a sword, but the tongue of the wise brings healing." ~Proverbs 12:18

Its amazing what can happen when we are not careful with our words.  When talking with someone take a breath before answering and in that breath pray for a humble spirit and a loving voice.  Take that time to decide how to respond instead of react.  Our words reveal our character and what is going on in our hearts.  Take time to respond instead of react.  Your words could hurt or bring healing. Which will yours bring?

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

The impossible

Nehemiah is a book about the rebuilding of the walls of Jerusalem after the exiles had returned.  The city went a while without being rebuilt and when Nehemiah decided to rebuild it there was opposition on every side. However the impossible was in fact possible.  It took time, determination and perseverance trusting in God to make the way.

This inspired our class to discuss all the impossible things in our own lives that we would love to see happen either in our present lives or the future.  Some talked of careers and others...homework, but seriously there was good discussion and thought about future dreams etc.  I talked with the class about a 24 year old named Katie Davis with Amazima Ministries, Click here.  It is amazing to discuss the faith and adventure in a young lady that is just like these students but a few years older living in Uganda with 13 adopted daughters and running a ministry that is supporting over 1200 children and families a week.

The students were inspired and felt called to help Katie and the kids in Uganda too!  They are now bringing in their loose change to collect in a jar for Amazima. They are trying to bring in $25 a month as it is a way to help on the website.  It says $25 a month will help provide over 600 children with education, food, school supplies, and discipleship.

 I am so proud of these students and looking forward to helping Katie's kids!  If you get a chance read  her book, Kisses from Katie.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Eye is the lamp

22 “The eye is the lamp of the body. If your eyes are healthy,[c] your whole body will be full of light. 23 But if your eyes are unhealthy,[d] your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light within you is darkness, how great is that darkness!
~ Matthew 6:22-23

We must be careful what we look at!  What you let in through your eyes becomes something you think about...consider if it is something that honors God.  Not only is this verse talking about what you look at, it is also talking about what you set your mind it something that honors God?  Are  you thinking selfishly or selflessly? Are you considering others and what they would like or need? 

Consider others better than yourselves. Ask The Lord to be light in you today and set your mind on things above, not on earthly things.  All the things around us are going to pass away, the tv shows, the football games, the cool clothes, the next best iPhone or iPod,etc.  Let go of them, don't focus on those things that will pass away...focus today on your friendships and those relationships that will not pass away! See what you can do today to honor God with your eyes so your whole body can be full of light!