“Fourteen-Eleven”

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I hesitate to write this post.

Why? Because it’s a little embarrassing.

I have been given a lot. That is an understatement. In the way of earthly goods, I live in a really nice house, I have a closet full of clothes, I have plenty of food… I could go on and on. I also have a family that for some bazaar reason is crazy about me. But those are small in comparison to the fact that God has placed me in a home that loves and follows after Him. I was born into a home that already believed that the Bible is the True Word of God, and that Jesus is the Messiah. I can’t describe just how overwhelming it is. God has literately poured out blessing upon blessing on me.

So often I think and ask “Why God? Why would You give me so much when others have so little?”

And then He says, “You have been given much so you can give much. You are to be my hands and feet, giving all for My sake if I ask it of you. You are to love the unlovable, touch the untouchables, reach the unreachables. The poor, the desolate, the unpopular, the ugly and unwanted. That is your mission, Grace. Your life is to be spent reaching those for My glory. Those whom the world esteems the lowest are highest in My Kingdom – treat them as royalty.”

That’s my mission. That’s my calling in life.

But no, I don’t always live with that attitude. There are plenty of days I sit on the throne of my life and selfishly run it.

Like last Thursday…

Early that afternoon there was a battle raging in my soul; I won’t go into all the details now for time sake. But I was angry with myself and throwing a royal pity-party. Honestly, it was the display of selfishness you’d expect to see from a 4-year-old, not an almost 20-year-old. But God in His grace did not leave me there. After many selfish tears and thoughts rooted in pride, He opened my eyes to my selfishness and areas of my life I was clinging onto.

Selfishness.

I repented. I surrendered.

There was much joy in that.

Lord, try me again. Try me again. I’m ready. I’m surrendered.

He did.

(Oh praise Him for that! When you ask Him for trials or testing to grow you, be sure that He will.)

And even though I’d asked Him, I wasn’t prepared for the area of my heart He’d touch next.

That evening, I ran an errand to Joann’s craft and fabric store with my Mom and sister. I wandered my way into the clearance fabrics, and after a while I noticed a man passed by.

“How are you doing, this evening?” An employee asked.

“I’m alive, and that’s saying a lot,” replied the middle-aged black man.

His clothes were worn, but not tattered. A construction-worker vest peaked out beneath his dark coat. Our eyes met. I smiled. “Hi.” “Hello.”

He hesitated for a few seconds and then walked up to me. “I’m being bashful… I’m sorry. I need to ask you something. Ok, I’m just going to say it. I need “fourteen-eleven”… My brain locked up for a second as he continued talking about things. What in the world is a “fourteen-eleven?” He mentioned something about his job, something about his house, and needing just “fourteen-eleven” more for a place he and his wife could stay the night.

It hit me. Oh, it’s $14.11. He’s asking for fourteen dollars and 11 cents.

I panicked. No one had ever approached me asking for money before. The thought crossed my mind “what if he’s just making it up?” It was awkward. It was inconvenient. I didn’t really know what to do.

“I’m sorry, but I don’t really have cash on me.” I replied knowing full well that I had some.

“Oh that’s ok, I’m sorry to bother you. I know God will provide someway.”

“I’m so sorry,” I said again sympathetically, almost tagging on a “I’ll pray for you.”

Are you not disgusted?! That I would pretend to hurt and sympathize with him, all the while knowing I had what he needed? It makes my stomach turn.

There I stood in the fabric isle transfixed, replaying the whole scene over in my mind again. What have I done? Out of my selfishness I lied. I’ve been selfish with what God has freely given me. What would Jesus have done?

What if that were Jesus?

I felt sick. What if it had been Jesus? I would have gladly given what was asked and more. But what does His Word say? Inasmuch as you have done it to the least of these, you have done it unto Me. (Matt 25)

I pulled out my wallet to see how much cash I had in it.

Fourteen dollars. No way.

I grabbed it and some change and started searching for him. I ran around the store, I checked outside. I looked around the store again, combing every isle. I check outside again. He was gone, no where to be found. The golden opportunity to show be the hands and feet of Christ was gone. I missed it because I was to consumed with myself and my wants. I did not have an outward focus.

How different it could have been if I had let the Lord truly sit on the throne that day… “Here Lord, my life–take it, spend it, use it!!! Make a fool out of it for Your sake if You wish. Only let it be Yours today.” If I had been living with the behavior of heaven–where those whom the world despises and call out as inconvenient are held high, and precious. Oh how different would my response have been!

Twice that day God showed me areas of my life that were tangled in selfishness. Twice I was so consumed with myself that I didn’t see what God was doing around me. Even as I type there are things He’s wanting me to pry my grubby little fingers off of. It’s going to be uncomfortable, it’s going to be inconvenient. But so was the Cross, and that’s what we’re called to do.

 Luke 9:23 – And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me.

Deny ourselves and carry a cross? Yes… And follow Him. And when you follow Him, you too will wind up at Calvary.
I’m not really sure how to end this post… These are things that I’m still learning and haven’t mastered yet. But slowly I’m learning to answer “Yes Lord, I’m willing” when He asks something of me. I have far to grow, and know I will be challenged from the moment I rise tomorrow morning.
So while this might be the end of this post, it’s the beginning of asking for the eyes and heart of Christ. It’s the start of asking Him to so fill me, that He lives and works through me.
Oh friend, won’t you join me?
-Grace Elizabeth

A look at the cross…

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Somedays I feel it deeper than others…

I feel the effects of this sin cursed world. I feel the hurt and brokenness of so many around me. I even feel the pain of my own sin tainted life and am haunted by my failures…

But this evening I turn back to the Cross; it seems so long since I walked the road to Calvary. I forget the gravity of what happened there so easily. I take Salvation for granted and begin living under the law again, not grace. I try to be “good enough” for God so He’ll love and accept me, so I can be close to Him. But at the foot of the Cross life begins to make sense again, and the broken seems redeemable. At the Cross the impossible became possible. At the Cross grace abounds where once the law and sin abounded.

I was just reading “Boy Meets Girl” by Joshua Harris (such a thought provoking book), and it had this excerpt in it from another book called “When God Weeps” by Steven Estes and Joni Eareckson Tada. It brought me to tears, repentance and praise; and so I thought maybe, just maybe it might bless you too. Oh friend, stop and linger at the cross…

The face that Moses had begged to see – was forbidden to see – was slapped bloody (Exodus 33:19-20)

The thorns that God had sent to curse the earth’s rebellion now twisted around his brow…

“On your back with you!” One raises a mallet to sink the spike. But the soldier’s heart must continue pumping as he readies the prisoner’s wrist. Someone must sustain the soldier’s life minute by minute, for no man has this power on his own. Who supplies breath to his lungs? Who gives energy to his cells? Who holds his molecules together? Only by the Son do “all things hold together” (Colossians 1:17). The victim wills that the soldier live on – he grants the warrior’s continued existence. The man swings.

As the man swings, the Son recalls how he and the Father first designed the medial nerve of the human forearm – the sensations it would be capable of. The design proves flawless – the nerves perform exquisitely. “Up you go!” They lift the cross. God is on display in his underwear and can scarcely breathe.

But these pains are a mere warm-up to his other and growing dread. He begins to feel a foreign sensation. Somewhere during this day an unearthly foul odor began to waft, not around his nose, but his heart. He feels dirty. Human wickedness starts to crawl upon his spotless being – the living excrement from our souls. The apple of his Father’s eye turns brown with rot.

His Father! He must face his Father like this!

From heaven the Father now rouses himself like a lion disturbed, shakes His mane, and roars against the shriveling remnant of a man hanging on a cross.Never has the Son seen the Father look at him so, never felt even the least of his hot breath. But the roar shakes the unseen world and darkens the visible sky. The Son does not recognize these eyes.

“Son of Man! Why have you behaved so? You have cheated, lusted, stolen, gossiped – murdered, envied, hated, lied. You have cursed, robbed, over-spent, overeaten – fornicated, disobeyed, embezzled, and blasphemed. Oh the duties you have shirked, the children you have abandoned! Who has ever so ignored the poor, so played the coward, so belittled my name? Have you ever held a razor tongue? What a self-righteous, pitiful drunk – you, who moles young boys, peddle killer drugs, travel in cliques, and mock your parents. Who gave you the boldness to rig elections, foment revolutions, torture animals, and worship demons? Does the list never end!

Splitting families, raping virgins, acting smugly, playing the pimp – buying politicians, practicing exhortation, filming pornography, accepting bribes. You have burned down buildings, perfected terrorist tactics, founded false religions, traded in slaves – relishing each morsel and bragging about it all. I hate, loathe these things in you! Disgust for everything about you consumes me! Can you not feel my wrath?

Of course the Son is innocent He is blamelessness itself. The Father knows this. But the divine pair have an agreement, and the unthinkable must now take place. Jesus will be treated as if personally responsible for every sin ever committed.

The Father watches as his heart’s treasure, the mirror image of himself, sinks drowning into raw, liquid sin. Jehovah’s stored rage against humankind from every century explodes in a single direction.

“Father! Father! Why have you forsaken me?!”

But heaven stops its ears. The Son stares up at the One who cannot, who will not, reach down or reply.

The Trinity had planned it. The Son had endured it. The Spirit enabled Him. The Father rejected the Son whom He loved. Jesus, the God-man from Nazareth, perished. The Father accepted His sacrifice for sin and was satisfied. The Rescue was accomplished.

Close your eyes for a moment. Drink the whole scene in.

I can’t even describe my own thoughts right now – so I won’t – I’ll leave you to think and pray and worship.

But oh how remembering what He did for me – what He did for us causes me to love Him more. Why wouldn’t I gladly obey every command and request my Jesus gives after what He has done?

I pray your heart is encouraged, friend. Encouraged to love Him more, pressed into greater obedience, and left gazing at the cross. Don’t ever look away. Don’t ever forget.

~Grace Elizabeth

Fed and forgiven

This is just a raw journal entry from today. Because not everyday is perfect.

Tuesday
Jan 14th, 2014

How can I be so foolish as to not fill my life with the Words of God? How can I afford not to be memorizing and meditating on God’s Word daily?

There is no victory to the unfed, malnourished warrior.

These past few days as I have been struggling, I have asked God why it is so hard to follow Him. Why when He proclaimed “my yoke is easy and my burden is light?”

God as a loving Father sets a plate of rich food before us– His Word, His very presence. But instead of being still, of feeding on the food He has provided, I foolishly hop up and run out into the battle very near starvation. And I wonder why I fail.

It’s be strong in the Lord and int the power of His might.

Not mine.

And yet I push and push in my own strength until I collapse, too weak to move on.

I begin to wonder where He’s been. I am frustrated with myself for failing again. And in one black moment I believe that victory in the Christian life doesn’t exists.

He approaches me so tenderly. Tears fill His eyes as He sees His beloved weak and beaten in a state of delirium.

And He draws me back to His side.

He forgives me.
He loves me.
He feeds me.

And today I choose to thank God for what I most detest in life–failure. Because failing always ends up bringing me back to Jesus’ side.

Oh Abba, how prone to wander, prone to fail I am. Teach me to feed on Your Word and dwell in Your presence! I praise You for being so faithful to me and always–ALWAYS drawing me back to Yourself. Your mercies are renewed EVERY morning. Great is Your faithfulness. Selah.

A silent denial

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A thought hit me as I prayed this morning: “have I also denied my Lord?”

In my mind’s eye I saw a dark, cold dungeon. The air was filled with the putrid stench of rotting flesh and rats. In the corner of one cell sat a large figure hunched over, eyes closed and lips moving in prayer. His body bore wounds that told of many beatings, some fresh and some reopened.

He sat there and prayed for his persecutors, his family, his church, and begging God for strength to endure to the end. His persecutors had beaten him time and again telling him that he had but only renounce his faith and he could be set free. They told him he could even continue to worship his God if he only said the words of denial and would no more preach. To merely let him go would mean he would be free to share his faith and many would believe as before. And whenever they killed the “Christ followers” twenty more would spring up in his place because of his martyrdom. But if he relented, if he gave in and denied his faith then no one would believe or respect him after that.

However this man was unwavering in his devotion to God. He would not be silent. He would not be ashamed or afraid of what man would do to him. He would continue to share the Gospel with all those he came in contact with. He would never deny his Lord.

But it got me thinking… I wonder… Have we done that which we would never dream? Have we–have I denied my Lord?

I imagine often of persecution, imprisonment, and even death for the sake of Christ. Something much like someone holding a gun to my head and asking “Will you say you deny Christ and never evangelize again?” I look them in the eye and say with a resolute passion, “no, I could never and will never deny my Lord.” (and then they pull the trigger…? I just hope that if persecution does break out here in America that I will be seen as a threat).

But perhaps our culture has already played the part of the persecutor and has beaten and threatened us until we no more share the Gospel of Jesus Christ. We’re scared. We’re ashamed. It’s uncomfortable. I myself succumb to those lies and fears.

We’ve never verbally denied our Lord, but just the same we’ve kept our faith secret and silent, content to just blend into this world. Silently we have called the things of this world our lord and forsaken our First Love. If the world or the culture can get us to be silent and blend in then they’ve won – to them it is better then just killing us off because we will only seem weak and ineffective. And the truth is, that if we Christians are living according to God’s Word then either the culture will change or crosses will be erected.

I guess what I’m trying to communicate here is that our silence is denial. Denial of our Lord, denial of the Great Commission He has given us to fulfill.

And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.      Matthew 28:18-20

My heart aches to know that within the past few weeks I’ve been in conversations where it led to planting seeds about the Lord, but I chose not to because I simply wasn’t expecting it. I wasn’t looking for ways that I could plant Gospel seeds, and when the situation arose I found it more convenient to remain silent on the topic. I don’t want to live as one that has denied the Lord. I want to live boldly and to lovingly proclaim the Gospel to others. I will not hide my light under a bushel, but put it on a candlestick.

Come Christian, you are called to be a light to the world – not to imitate the darkness. To shine forth with the radiant Gospel of Jesus Christ. Oh let us not deny Him in spirit! Let us call Jesus Lord and let our walk be self-evident to that fact.

~Grace Elizabeth

Simply joys~

I sport a baggy, comfy sweater with my hair piled into a messy knot on the top of my head as I sit down. The house is dark and quiet–quiet at last. Although there is a beauty to be found in the noise of a house full of people, I treasure the quiet too. Perhaps it’s this time of year, the weather, or the black coffee… but there is an overflow of memories, praises and lessons from this fall so far and I’m thankful.

Yes, thankful for things like…

-The opportunity to learn and start on my Doula certification.

-Iceskating with sweet cousin and little sister… I might as well have been flying and dancing in the air.

Iceskating!

 A Grandmother willing to give up her week to help us paint

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The countless inside jokes, times of laughter and fun that happen every single day around here… Siblings are the best.

The fragrance of fall: chai, candles, the fireplace, that cold fall scent in the wind…

-Opportuinities for this little Texas girl to wear sweaters.

-Many little hands learning the skill of basket-weaving. Stories. Laughter. Wednesdays.

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-Heart-felt prayers with dear friends in the parking-lot. Marveling at my God’s power as He had worked mightily in the lives of the ones I prayed with. Mightily indeed.

-Rotten milk and finding the lesson in it.

-Deep discussions and driving lessons with my Dad.

-Indian/Mediterranean treats.

-Friends in Christ whom when you ask “how are you doing?” it is always meant and answered at a spiritual level. And conversations that could go on forever about the Lord.

-Morning devotions with family.

-Forgiveness, grace, and lessons… oh so many lessons. Oh so much more to learn.

-Learning to choose joy. Like earlier this week as we were getting ready for some last minute, out-of-state guests I was frazzled. And I showed it. Little sis wanted to know what was wrong–why I wasn’t being “me.” I tried justifying my attitude, but then the Holy Spirit pricked my heart. My attitude wasn’t helping anything and it wasn’t honoring my King. Even though it was the last thing I wanted to do, I smiled. “Abba, help me choose joy.” And I began to sing to the Lord. As my praises wafted through the house my heart was transformed from one of complaining to one of praise. I want to be a woman of joy, a woman of praise–not ungrateful or complaining!

-Encouragement in the form of conversations, e-mails, verses and comments.

-Oh and Jesus. My precious Yeshua. Learning afresh of His love for me–letting the beauty of 1 John 4 sit in. Longing to know Him and His love for me even more. There is Joy in His presence.

These things are just a few–only a drop in a bucket. And so I slip into bed whispering thanks and asking Him once again to draw me nearer.

-Grace

To do him good…

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It was after church services a few weeks ago and I found myself holding a precious little treasure in my arms. This treasure was about 4 months old and he owned a pair of blue eyes that I’m sure could steal anyone’s heart. In my conversation with one of the moms, I mentioned just how much I desired to be a mother of my own precious little treasures one day.

She began to reply, and I was sure she was going to give me the “contentment speech.” You know, “be happy and serve God where He has placed you and in His time He will bring along ‘Mr. Right’.” Thing is, I am truly happy with my life; I feel full. I only want the next phase when God says it’s time. Overall, I am content. But she surprised me–she didn’t discredit that desire, instead she encouraged me. She told me that those were God given desires and she truly believed He would fulfill them. It was neat to hear that. It was so different for that desire to be affirmed.

Like any girl, I’ve carried big dreams about my knight in shining armor. I’ve known some girls to write very extensive lists on what they want their husbands to be. Oh sure, it’d be nice if he could sing and play instruments well, if he were a good writer, spoke several languages, was romantic, and was really athletic–the list could go on and on. But what my heart has craved and my prayers have echoed is that he would be a passionate lover of God; that he would have a dynamic relationship with the Lord.

For if a man loves God–truly loves and follows after Him and has a humble and teachable spirit, then everything else will fall into place. No, he won’t be perfect, he will fail just as much as I do. We won’t be perfect, but we will grow and learn together. That’s part of the beauty of it.

Occasionally I put myself in the place of the kind of man I would like to marry and make a list of the kind of woman he would want to marry and then I work on those things. Do you desire a man of prayer? Become a woman of prayer. Do you desire a man that meditates on God’s Word? Start meditating! What about a man that is involved in ministry? Become a woman that serves and ministers to those around her. (I’m writing as a girl to girls, but it works the same way reversed).

We can daydream, we can wish about our Knight in Shining Armor. But would we be the kind of woman he is looking for?

And this doesn’t only apply to our “spiritual side.” Wouldn’t the man of your dreams appreciate an organized house and a well-cooked meal?

It really boils down to this: become the kind of person you’d like to marry.

No, we won’t be perfect–we’ll fail. I can promise you that. But this season of singleness is so precious. We are given such a precious gift from God. We have time to prepare, time to develop our walk with the Lord, time to reach out to others… If you’d like somewhere to get started, Proverbs 31:10-31 has some great pointers. *smile

Verses 10-12 says:

Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies. The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil. She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life.

Will we do our husbands good all the days of our lives? Even before we know his name? Are we preparing for him, being faithful to him, and building a foundation of trust now?

That’s where I’m at right now. That’s a little of what I’ve been learning this year–to become the woman my Knight would be seeking for. Time is so short, and I’ve already wasted so much of it. And truly, if we are living fully for Jesus now, obeying Him, seeking His face, loving Him and allowing Him to change us, then we will become the person our spouse needs. As we focus on Christ and lose ourselves in Him, I believe everything else will fall into place.

Today I purpose to do my husband good as I follow after Christ.

 

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Romans Challenge~

Last month I had the opportunity to help out at the Mally’s Bright Light’s conferences for girls. (If you want to know more about their ministry you can go to their website– http://www.tomorrowsforefathers.com/).

The long and short of it is that it was an amazing time. Lives were truly changed. The first part of the week was a conference geared towards younger girls. The biggest thing that impacted the sweet gals on my team was to make a commitment to read their Bibles daily.

I had never been good about making God’s Word a priority in my life until the beginning of 2011. My new year’s resolution was a vow to God to spend at least 5 minutes in His Word everyday that year. Since then, by God’s grace I have not missed a single day. It has impacted my life so much, and always reminds me where my focus ought to be and Who’s life this is.

That being said, Grace Mally is starting a “Romans Challenge” next month. I love a good challenge and thought I’d share this one with you. Basically, during the month of September you read Romans 1-8 everyday (you can head over to her blog to find out more about it). . Eight chapters is a good amount of reading. As a slow reader that could easily take me 30 minutes to an hour each day.

Romans 1-8 hold some passages that are very close to my heart. How wonderful would it be to daily reading and meditating on these rich passages? We sit down to watch a movie or TV show–why not use that time to immerse ourselves instead in the Word of God? What do we have to lose?

So who wants to join me? Saturate yourself in the Word of God!

I’d love to know if you do this too (comment and let me know!). And if you don’t do Romans challenge, I do encourage you to be faithful in the Word and press on to know the Lord. In the end, He is all that matters.

Love and blessings,

Grace

The Lord is my Shepherd

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Howdy, friend. *smile* I feel deeply sorry for anyone who still checks and reads my blog after all my inconsistency. It’s not that I don’t like blogging or don’t have anything to blog about, I just can’t seem to ever get to it. With finishing up high-school priorities change. But tonight I need a productive break from the norm–hence blogging.

Lately (for close to two months now?), I’ve been going hard at doing the right things, maximizing my time, being really disciplined, and generally making every single second count. It’s been great and I’ve gotten so much accomplished Spiritually, academically, around my home, and etc. But I have been left feeling burnt out and like I can’t do it anymore. I simply am not enough. Weary.

I am so thankful to serve a God I can bring everything to–every burden, every care. After I poured my heart out to Him and finally stopped long enough to listen to Him, He brought great encouragement to my heart. I thought I’d share just a few of the thoughts and verses He brought to mind–nothing really structured or profound. I encourage you to really read the Scripture passages instead of just skimming them over.

He reminded me that He is my Shepherd.

For thus saith the Lord GOD: Behold, I, even I will both search my sheep, and seek them out.

As a shepherd seeketh out his flock in the day that he is among his sheep that are scattered; so will I seek out my sheep, and will deliver them out of all places where they have been scattered in the cloudy and dark day.

I will feed them in a good pasture, and upon the high mountains of Israel shall their fold be: there shall they lie in a good fold, and in a fat pasture shall they feed upon the mountains of Israel.

I will feed my flock, and I will cause them to lie down, saith the Lord God.

I will seek that which was lost, and bring again that which was driven away, and will bind up that which was broken, and will strengthen that which was sick: but I will destroy the fat and the strong; I will feed them with judgment. (Ezekiel 34:11-16

There is something so indescribably comforting as seeing Jesus as my precious Shepherd. I feel like a lamb–completely and utterly helpless. Prone to wander. So weak. This verse in Isaiah is so precious to me:

He shall feed His flock like a shepherd: He shall gather the lambs with His arm, and carry them in His bosom, and shall gently lead those that are with young. (Isaiah 40:11)

Oh how I want so much to just be carried in the arms of my Shepherd, Yeshua! He is the God that feeds, carries, and gently leads those who are weak and broken. Oh indeed, Jesus, will You not carry me?

The LORD is my Shepherd; I shall not want. He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: He leadeth me beside the still waters. He restoreth my soul… (Psalm 23:1-3a)

Oh the riches of His Word! I cannot begin to describe the depth of what the passages mean to me or how I have prayed and prayed them back to God. How beautiful to lie down in green pastures, and to be led by still waters? He is the restorer of my soul…and how my soul needs restoring right now. When I see Who my Shepherd is, I truly want nothing but Him.

Just one more and I’ll close for tonight–

Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.

Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.

For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light. (Matt 11:28-30)

He offers rest for the weary, for the heavy laden. Yep, that’s me. Does His yoke not sound wonderfully beautiful? Does not your heart cry within you “Lord, let me take up Your yoke!?”

Rest well, friend. I know I will tonight. I look forward to tomorrow for I am carried in the arms of my Shepherd. He feeds me. He is so understanding, and listens to my desperate cries. He strengthens me in my weakness. He restores my soul. He rescues me.

And you know what? It makes me love Him all the more.

Resting in Him,

Grace Elizabeth

 

 

Oh taste and see

I just have one question for y’all this evening…it’s something that has been growing within my heart the last few weeks.

Have you tasted Who the Lord is?

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I’m sure you’ve heard the Truth many, many times that God is good. Do you know this as merely a fact about God, or have you tasted it, have you experienced His goodness?

O taste and see that the LORD is good: blessed is the man that trusteth in him. Psalm 34:8

Have you tasted that the Lord is gracious (1Pet. 2:3), awesome, loving, true, and real?

Do you really know the Lord for yourself? Meaning, have you learned Who God is by a first-hand relationship, or simply by what you have read or others have taught you?

Who is God to you? What aspects about Him can you say you know because you have spent time with Him? Perhaps He is just God to you right now. Perhaps He is your Savior or Strength. Perhaps He is your Truest Friend, or the Husband of your soul.

Wherever you are in your relationship with Him, I encourage you to press on to know Him better. To really know Him for yourself, not just what others have told you about Him. To know God deeply and intimately. To know His heart.

And when you know His heart, you will know how He feels about sin, you will know what to pray, and I promise, you will be changed.

Like Paul, may we count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus. And may we never get to a place where we stop getting to know God.

In Christ,

Grace

Inside the womb

This was also written for my brother’s writing prompts.

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This place, this wonderful place is where I’ve always been. It is dark and warm. It is safe. This is my world. These nine weeks I’ve been alive have been so wonderful, Mommy dearest. Any moment now and you’ll awake; I wonder what we will do today!

 Ah, you awake and I wiggle with excitement. You get ready for the day oblivious to your little fan club. Oh Mommy, you are the best person in the whole world—I love you!

 Where are we going, Mommy? If it’s with you, than I want to go too. I can’t wait until the day we meet face to face. Did you know I have your eyes, your hair and laugh? I only hope that someday I may be just like you.

 This is a new place, Mommy; what are we here for? I don’t think I’ve seen these people in the green clothes before. Why are you lying down? Is it nap time already?

 Mommy, what’s happening? What is intruding my sanctuary? Oh Mommy, I feel something sucking at my arm! What is this pain I feel? Oh Mommy, I promise I’ll be good—I promise I’ll do anything you ask—please just make them stop! You must protect me; you can’t let them do this to me! Mommy they’re ripping me apart, I can feel it…

 So this is the end of my world. Remember Mommy, I love you.

I’m just a little babe that was within your womb,
Who could have guessed that this would be my tomb?

 

In Christ,

Grace

Gal. 2:20, Ps. 16:11