thinking…

I almost left. They ran my teacher friend out of our church and I was mad. Beyond mad. But I stayed at my church because of my family friend.

Then that same family friend had to move away. I almost left the church again. I didn’t think I had reason to stay. Who were my real friends there? I wasn’t sure. But my husband and I were serving in the church and I felt we should probably stay.

And…turns out I did have real friends…two really good ones in fact…there at church. So for the second time I stayed.

So beyond glad that I did!

But this time…I would leave. Because of the strangeness happening I would have to. If my family wasn’t moving away I would be outta there.

I love my friends so very much. It’s hard enough that I won’t get to see them regularly. But if I was staying in town I’d be leaving.

There are just some things that are inexcusable. Trust and integrity…yep…that’s gone. (thank you friend for that observation)

It pains me to see my dear friends hurting so much. It is hard to witness such deception. It’s no wonder my friend is having such a hard time.

And it’s beyond sad to see the church I have called my home church for nearly 10 years seemingly headed down the drain.

Nope. I wouldn’t be able to stay.

That’s what I’m thinking.

k

shut up!

I could not fall asleep last night. My brain just would not turn off. All I wanted to do was yell, “Shut Up!!” But what good would that have done? None. And I would have freaked out all of my family members.

There is just so much on my mind lately. That happens a lot I guess.

Our family is packing it up and moving to a different state. There is a group of people that I love going through some really hard stuff and it makes me sad. To have to say good-bye to them during this turmoil is a bit heart breaking.

And my mind won’t shut up about it.

Then I see a post on facebook…something about writing. Paraphrasing here…it said, “write about your fears, things you love, things you hate. Write without holding back.” That kind of thing, you know?

So here I am.

This move is huge for us. My youngest will have to change schools and make new friends. I have no doubt she will, but it’s just a big adjustment. My oldest daughter will have to find a new job. I have to find a new job. And my dear husband will have to find something to do to stay occupied. Being on disability is not a fun thing.

Will the church I found turn out to be a good one or not?

Will we make enough money quickly enough to move into our own house. And yeah…I’m totally looking forward to moving AGAIN within a year or so.

etc. etc. etc…

And what about my friends…the group of people in turmoil? What’s going to happen to them?

You know…I think that is what’s bothering me the most. So much has happened. So many hurt feelings. So many opinions. And I understand. That’s my problem. I see the situation through the eyes of various individuals. Yet, I try to figure out what the purpose is…what God’s will is.

That is not for me to know. I know God’s will is always good. And I’m not happy that things have gone the way they have by any means. But I know that God wasn’t surprised. He knew.

I take it back. That’s not what’s bothering me the most.

My friend is angry. And she has a right to be. My fear? If I open up completely about my opinion, she’s going to be mad…disappointed…maybe even not want to talk to me. Are my fears substantiated? Probably not. But I don’t know. And that’s what I’m afraid of.

Psalm 73 (click link) is a Bible passage that was shared with me. I read it. And re-read it. Several times.

I know that some people did things the wrong way. I absolutely understand that and it makes me sick.

Verse 21 says, “Then I realized that my heart was bitter, and I was all torn up inside.”

Am I/was I harboring bitterness in my heart over this situation? I believe so. Are others? Quite possibly.

Over two days, as I mentioned, I kept reading Psalm 73. I felt as though the Lord was putting something on my heart.

The last several verses reminded me that when angry, I/we have a human tendency to act foolishly. As if God’s very words to me were,

“Don’t be foolish in this situation. Who is in control here? I understand your frustration. But this is something that had to happen. Let me guide you and those affected to your glorious destiny.”

I can forgive because God gives me the gift of forgiveness. Does it excuse the behaviors? Not a chance. A quote from a friend…”Trust and Integrity – once lost is hard to regain.”

It was 1:30am when I finally got up out of bed. I went to the kitchen to get some milk…I’ve heard it helps you fall asleep…and my ibuprofen…maybe if my joints didn’t ache so much I could fall asleep. Right? Then I grabbed my phone and earphones. Music is always helpful in relaxing…at least for me.

Pandora was my music app of choice last night. Or should I say this morning? LOL Anyway…I turned my light off once again, laid back with my headphones in place, and hit play. (Figuratively speaking)

What was the first song to play? It was “From the Inside Out” by Hillsong. That’s the song/video I have at the beginning of this post. Great song. It nearly caused me to burst into tears.

The song says it all. At least for me in this situation.


A thousand times I’ve failed
Still your mercy remains
Should I stumble again
Still I’m caught in your grace
Everlasting, your light will shine when all else fades
Never ending, your glory goes beyond all fame

Your will above all else
My purpose remains
The art of losing myself in bringing you praise
Everlasting, your light will shine when all else fades
Never ending, your glory goes beyond all fame

My heart and my soul
I give you control
Consume me from the inside out Lord
Let justice and praise
Become my embrace
To love you from the inside out

Everlasting, your light will shine when all else fades
Never ending, your glory goes beyond all fame
And the cry of my heart is to bring you praise
From the inside out
Lord my soul cries out


I will continue to fail in my reactions. That’s a given. I’m human.

But God’s grace is everlasting.

His light will shine even in the darkest of times.

His will before ours.

My purpose is to give Him praise…give Him control. Right?

Lord, my soul cries out to You.

Consume me from the inside out.

k

my place in this world?

It wasn’t long ago that the thought of leading a Bible study crossed my mind.

A dear friend left my church. Not many months later another friend…a BFF if you will…also left. I was feeling lost. Maybe I was feeling like I had to do something to feel like I was needed. Who knows.

Yet another friend who has let me cry on her shoulder numerous times and listened to me ramble told me something that I have not forgotten entirely…paraphrased… I just feel like you need to figure out where you belong before you try to lead.

Fast forward to now…or at least the last couple of months I suppose.

I have questioned just where exactly do I fit in? There have been many times in my life that I felt strongly about the fact I didn’t fit in certain situations. For instance…cliques turn me off completely. I get along with lots of people. There’s no need to group myself with a handful of the “popular kids.”

As I’ve grown and matured…as I’ve pondered the question…I think God is trying to tell me something. He will put me where He wants me for as long as He wants me there. With my newest little adventure (close friends will know what I’m talking about… La La La La) I’m in a place where I really didn’t think I’d be. But I mustered up the courage and took a friends’ challenge 😉 and there I am…for a season. I’m doing something I enjoy. Maybe I’m not the best at it, but my heart is in it and that’s what matters!

As for leading a Bible study…who knows? Maybe I will one day. That is actually something I would like to do.

I’m overjoyed that I have a family who didn’t totally laugh at me when I told them of my newest adventure. They’re supportive and for that I am blessed. ❤

Where do I belong? Only God knows. I look to God’s light to guide me in finding my place in this world.

k

music and worship…

So… lately the subject of music has been on my mind. Mostly praise and worship music. There also seems to be a lot of talk about it. Facebook, radio, blogs, etc.

I was reading a post on Facebook from Hillsong United. They are a group from Australia. They have become quite popular. With that popularity has come controversy. I don’t know all of the ‘ins and outs’ but apparently some think they are “selling God” with their music and ministry.

The comments were not offensive, per se, they were more accusatory…claims of idolatry and such.

My feelings on the subject of music have been pulled in many directions over the course of my Christian life.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Ok…I need to stop here. I’m attempting to write a nice “thought out” blog about this subject. However, what I really want to say is this…

I love music in general. Praise and worship music is my favorite because I can praise, pray to, and worship my Lord and Savior while listening and singing along. Is that so bad?

Do I “feel” anything while singing? Yeah. I guess I do. Sue me. I don’t know if it’s the Holy Spirit. I don’t know for sure if when I’m singing a prayer like song that the Lord hears me. Is the Spirit interceding for me? Again…I don’t know.

My problem is this…several times I’ve heard/read that worship music before a sermon isn’t biblical. Worship music is a form of paganism. And just today in that post from Hillsong, a person declared that they were “selling God.”

Should secular music be cut out of my life? I don’t know. There were times that I thought it should be. As a new believer I sold dozens of my cds in my collection because they were not Christian. Now I wonder if that was the “right” thing to do. Now folks are questioning other folks for owning cds by Christian artists.

Is music and singing biblical? Yes. The Bible speaks of people singing and dancing before the Lord. The Bible speaks of singing and worshiping God in heaven for all of eternity.

So where are we/am I going wrong? I’m confused.

Honestly, so many of the songs I love tell a story…they’re prayers. It’s as if someone else wrote exactly what I am feeling or have felt. I can relate to the lyrics. If the song is more prayer like, it’s as if I am praying to God just as the author of the song is.

And so many others who are listening.

Help me out. Anyone reading this. Help me to know exactly what is or is not biblical about enjoying praise and worship music.

k

Contrarian Christians

I’ve never re-blogged before…but this one is a good one! Take a few moments to read.

Restoring Kingdom Builders

“You’ll never be popular.”

That’s what a retired policeman told me after I had preached a sermon early in my pastoral career.

He told me that my sermon was great, but that if I preached that way in the future, many churchgoers weren’t going to like it.

He was probably right.

Some Christians … and I count myself as one … do not always agree with certain popular teachings or practices in the Christian church.

In fact, just because they’re popular doesn’t mean they’re right … or even wise.

When you think outside the mainstream, you might just be a contrarian … even if you’re a follower of Jesus.

Let me give you several illustrations of what I’m talking about:

*The words to a well-known chorus state, “An empty grave is there to prove my Savior lives.”

Is that true?

I hear that phrase “the empty grave” used as evidence of…

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catching up…again

Can anyone else relate?

You want to do something you enjoy (blogging) on a regular (or at least semi-regular) basis but never seem to get in the grove? Yep. That’s me. Story of my writing life.

I’m making an honest effort to do this with some level of regularity. But I guess sometimes life just gets in the way.

Lately though, there has been good reason. As mentioned in a previous post, my dear hubby has been sick. He is much better now than he was a month ago…but still a couple of obstacles to overcome. I know there are some of you out there that know what I mean. Family first. His health is extremely important. We are hopefully done with hospital stays and most appointments have been taken care of. I feel like I can breathe again. And maybe even get in some good writing time.

So…here comes another session of Blogging 101. I attempted it in January, but wasn’t able to keep up. I will try once again. I hope to see some more new blogs from fellow bloggers. And hopefully get a few more followers myself.

Have a great weekend!

k

Like the clouds…

The clouds in the sky
Remind me of the roads in life
Ever changing

As the Lord places them
So He places me
He knows where I’m going

Even when
Like the clouds
Transition is certain

Life is good
His ways are good
I will stay in His hands

Like the clouds

k