Friday, February 28, 2014

truth is.....

My two teenage daughters play this game with their friends on social media.  Truth is, your pretty, your smart, you fun to be around, we don't really know each other, we haven't been able to hang out for a while, I like you, the list goes on and on.  Well this morning, HE is wanting me to know what HIS truth is.  

You may have noticed that I haven't blogged for a few days, and that is because, well the truth is, I haven't really wanted to.  You see I'm in a seasoning of growing and change, and I have been in a lot of pain with this season.  There have been days where the last thing I want to do is know what I have to do in order to make the change that I am needing in my life.

There have been mornings where I have woken up thinking, "Oh GOD please not today, just let everything go right today, so it won't be so hard for me."  This morning HE has revealed HIS truth to me, by saying,  "the truth is Heather, that I am going to keep calling on you to make the changes that you are in need of, and the reason I am calling on you, is because you are the one in need.

This morning HE is taking me further into HIS teaching about what the truth is about the anger that lives within me.  HE is wanting me to know that this anger that I am refusing to let go of, will eventually destroy me, and wash away all of HIS teachings if I don't learn to work through it, and let it all go.  Letting go of my anger is a HUGE struggle for me, as it has lived in me for so long.  Anger festers within me, whenever I am trying my best to do what I know is honoring to HIM, and everything and everyone around me is doing things to make me mad.

The truth is in the moments where I can feel my feelings welling up inside of me, I begin to pray, "LORD JESUS, please help me to not get "worked up."  Reveal your truth about what is going on, set me free from these emotions LORD."  The more I pray the harder the situation or the person I am battling my anger with presses into me.  The more I seek HIM, the more the pressure is on, and the more angry I become because, come on now, I am TRYING!!!!  

It NEVER fails that in that moment is when I LOSE IT!  The moment where I become the very thing I prayed that I wouldn't become.  Even though I may  have been aggravated, or upset by someone or something, and realized that my anger was festering, and "thought" I was doing the right thing, I find myself in a puddle of tears, and feeling the enormous weight of condemnation on my broken spirit, and worry that once again I have missed the mark, and have dishonored HIM, and HIS Daily Teachings.

"gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law" Galatians 5:23

HE is wanting me to know that HE gives me the self control that I am need of to monitor my emotions.  This for me means to monitor my mouth, because so often it begins running before my brain has even had a chance to process what the truth is.  HE is reminding me of the times where I will tell one of my children a task that they need to complete.  When I go to check on them, and see that they haven't even started, I ask them why they haven't and before they have even had a chance to speak, I begin yelling, "WHY can't you EVER do what you are told?  WHY must you always disobey me?"

HIS truth is, that I, Heather, motor mouth, have missed the mark on so many days, and interactions with my own children, because I, have missed the mark with HIS Daily Teachings for my life.  The more I study HIS word, and seek HIM, the harder it has become for me to do what HE tells me to do, as it seems as if though the entire universe is lined up against me.  The more I seek HIM, the more I find HIM, and the more trouble seems to find me. 

HE is wanting me to know that HIS truth is that this is ALL a part of HIS plan for my life.  HE is telling me that it is in these moments where HIS truth is revealed of WHOSE I am.  HE is wanting me to know that when I feel the temptation rising up in me to get angry, and get mad, and explode, I must remember that HE is the one who loves me and knows me best, and HE will give me a way out.  

"No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it." 1 Corinthians 10:13

HIS truth is today that the condemnation that I am feeling, is NOT from HIM.  HE is wanting me to know that HE isn't mad at me, but rather HE is MAD ABOUT ME!   HE is wanting me to know that it is because HE loves me so much, that HE tests me, because HE doesn't want me to stay where I am at right now.  HE is wanting me that HE allows these things in my life to stretch my faith in HIM, and to make me stronger against the lies of this world, so that HIS TRUTH will be revealed.  HE is wanting me to know that this is ALL just apart of HIS plan  for me to model CHRIST for others, and for my life to be a living testament for people to see that HE truly does have our best interest at heart, and HE truly is the ONE WHO loves and knows us best.  HE is wanting me to know what HIS truth is about WHO I am, because of WHOSE I am.

This morning I wasn't sure if I could stand another teaching about "Choose JOY," as I had a really bad attitude.  Instead of going straight to HIS word, I sat down in my living room and watched JOYCE MEYER, ENJOYING EVERYDAY LIFE, and wouldn't you know it that she was talking about "Emotional Stability?!?"  The more she spoke the more I could sense that today would be the day that HIS Daily Teachings would be kicked back into gear for my life, and I was being primed to receiving HIS Daily Teaching today.

If that wasn't enough, when I went to my Power Thoughts devotional by JOYCE MEYER, I realized that I was truly being primed to hear HIM this morning.  Today's power thought is: I forgive quickly and never allow emotions to rule my actions.

HIS truth is today that until I learn to forgive quickly, meaning I must choose to forgive quickly, even when the person isn't sorry, I will allow my emotions to control me.  I don't want this for my life, as my emotions get me into a whole lot of trouble, and have so often destroyed the very relationships that I hold very near and dear to my heart.  Truth is today that instead of being grateful and thankful for HIS Daily Teachings about forgiveness and the importance it is for me to receive my freedom, I have fought it.  Even trying to justify it by saying,  "I have forgiven, but I haven't forgotten."  HIS truth is saying, "IF you have truly forgiven, then you won't remember, or need to remember when someone offends you again, because it is then that you, Heather, will be seeing them through MY eyes."  

For the past few weeks HE has really been working on me about seeing people through HIS eyes, and loving them as HE loves them, because of how I know that HE loves me.  HE is telling me that when I choose to see people through HIS eyes, I will see beyond the surface of what is visible.  I will see the pain that is rooted deep within them.  So often I forget how broken I have been, and how HE has restored my life.  HE is wanting me to always remember that just how I was broken, other's are broken as well.

HE is wanting me to know that it doesn't matter what a person may have, or the life they are living, even when I "think" they are living a truly blessed life, they too are struggling, they too have been hurt in someway, and they too need JESUS.  So in knowing this, I am understanding that this is the very reason WHY I, Heather, am being called to be the Hands and Feet of JESUS and love the unloved, forgive the unforgiven, extend HIS grace, and show HIS mercy to the broken and lost souls of this fallen world.  To accept that I must suffer in being sure that HIS truth is revealed for all to know and see through HIS living testament which is my life.  My life has been a broken mess, that HE has, is, and will continue to make HIS beautiful message.

Today dear friends, I just pray for healing for your broken hearts.  I pray that you will seek HIM, and ask HIM to show you were your anger lies.  I pray that you will have the courage to forgive, love, give grace, and show mercy to those who have wronged you.  I pray that today is the day that HE will open the eyes of your heart, soul, and mind so that you will be able to see people through HIS eyes. 


Monday, February 24, 2014

through HIS eyes....

D and I have been married for 15 years now.  We are currently raising 3 daughters ages 15 (tomorrow) 13, and 9, and two warrior son's ages 5, and 16 months.  We have been together for almost 19 years, and in those years we have been through many ups and downs.  D has been right there by my side as I went through my darkest hours, and through both of my breakthroughs.  

My latest breakthrough happened two weeks ago, and just like my first I completely blew up, and exploded like a volcano.  Since that closet Wednesday D and I have been a new journey with CHRIST as the center of our marriage.  We have been reading a marriage devotional, as well as doing a marriage bible study together.

It has been through both of these, that the truth has been revealed, and I have to say that some of it, eh, well okay, ALL of it has been a tough pill to swallow.  Throughout the past week of this study many questions and answers have come to light, and frustrations have been revealed.  Things that neither one of us knew about the other.  One of my biggest struggles in my marriage to D is trust.  Not that I think he is going to leave me, but trust that I can be my true self.  That I am able to fall flat on my face, and won't receive criticism from him.  However, D is a solution's guy, always needing to fix what is broken, and critiquing is his specialty. He has been a computer programmer for the past 16 years, and has just recently started a new phase of his career as a consultant for a software developing company.  

D's new career change has come with it's challenges.  First with moving our family of 7, and girls have to go to new schools.  Then came the daunting task of finding a new church to call home.  It took almost four months for us to finally be able to say that we found a place to call home. 

For the past 10 months I have been on this journey and seeking HIM Daily to show me how to live my life.  I have been so excited to share the amazing things that HE is doing in my life, and I haven't been able to share it fully with D, as he really hasn't had any time to hear it. 

For the past 5 years D has become extremely busy in his career, and has had to put it before our marriage, and our family.  Resentment of that has been festering in me, until finally I couldn't take it any more.  I wish I could say that I spoke lovingly, and "tried" to communicate in a productive way, but as you know I wouldn't be able to write out HIS Daily Teachings if I had.  No, I made a mess out of things, but out of the ashes HIS beautiful message is being written.

In the first part of our spiritual walk D was the stronger one of us two.  He was the one who read his bible daily, and who prayed for me to help me get through the trauma of my past.  He was my rock, my provider, my protector.  He devoted ALL of his free time to raising our children with me.  He never had guys night out, or just sat and watched the game.  He was always looking for ways for us to connect as a family on a deeper level.  This is what I had grown used to, and made me fall in love all over with him again, and this time it was a much deeper more meaningful love.

When we moved to a new home two years ago our lives were the complete opposite of what I just wrote.  D had been working 100+ hour weeks, missed church often, no longer prayed out loud for our family, and really seemed to disconnect from all of us.  We had been through the loss of our house, bankruptcy, our daughter was ill, and a scary pregnancy and delivery of our first son.  Not too mention that after all that we suffered our 2nd miscarriage, of which would take me even further away from him, and GOD.  

HE has revealed to me today that D moved us, in an effort to save our family.  He knew that we were unhappy where we were living, as we didn't feel safe, and our house didn't have a yard for the children to play in.  Just like D, he found us a much bigger house, with a big yard, and moved us to a town where we would all feel safe.  We called that place home for two years.

It was in those two years that we would be blessed by the birth of our second son, and would find another place to call home and that was our church.  Before long we were all serving at our church, even D, but his heart wasn't fully in it, as he was struggling with balancing it all.  When it all became too much for him, he sat me down one night and said, "somethings gotta give, I can't do this anymore, I don't think I've ever been more unhappy with our life than I am right now."  This crushed me, as I loved our church, and so did our children.  I kept thinking to myself, "surely GOD YOU won't move us now, NOT when we are so firmly planted and rooted here, LORD please change him."

Two short months later I ironed D's clothes and straightened his collar and kiss him goodbye as he headed off to his interview.  Right before he went into his interview I felt a gentle nudge from GOD telling me to pray for D.  I prayed for GOD's will to be done, as I was "sure" what GOD's will was for our family.

Six hours later D called me to tell me that he thought the interview went okay, that he didn't think he would get the job, but that he felt it was good practice interview.  It was then that I breathed a HUGE sigh of relief, that we wouldn't be moving.  What happened next would rock me to my core, and it took until today, through HIS Daily Teachings in showing me WHO D is through HIS eyes.

Fifteen minutes after we hung up the phone, D called me back to let me know that NOT only did he get the job, but they wanted him to start right away!  By the time he got home the news was shared that we would go on vacation and as soon as we got home, he would pack up and leave to start his new job.  It was decided that the children and I would join him 2 short weeks later.

Once we moved animosity reared its ugly head, and fights began that we had never had to deal with before. Not only was I sad, but so were the kids, they were acting out, and so was I...... as I sit here writing out what life has been like since our move, I am embarrassed, as I haven't set a very good example of how to support the people you love when the blessings are being poured over their life, and you can't see it happening in your own.

My jealousy that D was living out his prayers, was a tough pill to swallow for me.  Very quickly he became busy once again with his new job, only this time, he wouldn't be away from  us, he would be in the same house as us.  Currently D has been working round the clock with a client, and as he explained it to me yesterday, "in the world of business the clock doesn't stop." 

Last night we had plans to see a movie that we have tried to see three times since Valentine's Day.  However, D was working with a client, and the more his phone rang, and the more he stayed locked in his office, the more I prayed.... "LORD, please help me be content that he is doing what needs to be done.  Help me to be the loving and supportive wife D needs."  Over and over, till I was sick of listening to myself I pray that.  

HE is showing me this morning that I handled last night well.  I didn't place blame on D for a situation that was out of his control.  HE has let me know that instead of praying "LORD please change him," I must be saying, "LORD please change me."   This is hard for me, as I have been the one with her feelings hurt, as he hasn't had much time for our family, let alone for me.  

The other night my bitterness came spilling out about how much resentment I had that D was so devoted to his job, not only that but I told him that I didn't even feel like he loved me anymore.  Over and over I pointed out everything he was doing wrong.  It was during that time that D admitted to not wanting to encourage me, or even talk to me, as here I am writing out this blog saying how GOD is working on me, but when it comes to our marriage, I'm NOT willing to budge?!?!?  YIKES!!! That my friend's was a tough pill to swallow.

Today I am so incredibly thankful for HIS grace, for do-overs that I get every single day.   Today HE is wanting me to know that changing me is important, because it is MY STORY, and NOT  D's.  HE is wanting me to think about how much grace is extended to me when I make mistakes, and just how much I need HIS grace, every hour, of every minute, of every moment of my day.  So if I know that about me, then why do I act so surprised to hear that D needs the same thing?  Instead of saying, "well why can't he be more attentive, and why doesn't he say I love you, and why don't I always have to be the bigger person, and why this, and why that, and how come..... and blah blah blah blah blah....."   HE is wanting me to know that I need to be the one WHO is attentive, to say I LOVE YOU,  be the BIGGER PERSON, and the why, the how, the what, and the WHO starts with me.  HE is wanting me to know that if I am needing change in my life, in my marriage it has to start with me, as I am the one in need.  HE is telling me that when I seek HIM, and ask HIM to teach, lead, and guide me through my marriage to D, HE will draw me close to HIM, and in turn my love for D will be a reflection of HIS love, and it is then that I will be able to see D through HIS eyes.

HE is asking me to TRUST HIM this morning that HE has HUGE, AMAZING plans for my marriage to D. Therefore, I must choose to NOT be feelings lead, and instead, let HIM lead me, and let HIS truth be revealed of WHO D is, what D does, how D feels, and let everything happen in HIS timing, as HE has proven to me time and again that HIS timing is perfect.

D said to me the other night, "I know this is hard for you to hear coming from me, but I still need you to be my wife.  I need you to love, respect, and support me.  I know I make mistakes, and I know I have checked out, but I'm in this, I want this,  I want you, and I want our family.  Please, please Heather be patient with me." 

"So again I say, each man must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband." Ephesians 5:33

It has taken a lot of tears, and prayers on my part to be able to fully understand and appreciate D's honesty with me, and to have the courage to seek HIM, and ask HIM to allow me to see D through HIS eyes. HE is wanting me to know that if ever I doubt whether or NOT I can be patient and wait, and be content while patiently waiting, all I need to do is soak myself in HIS word, and HE will be my light, and will give me the strength I need to persevere through the trials in my marriage.

"Not that I speak in regard to need, for I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content: I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound. Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." Philippians 4:11-13

Though I may not know what the future hold for my marriage to D, I do know who holds my future.  I know that I was born to be D's wife, and he was born to be my husband.  In the loving words of D "GOD knew, HE knew we would just click, we would just work, it's meant to be, it's right, it's all right with us."

I pray today that if you are struggling in your marriage, and are desperate for change, seek HIM, and ask HIM what HE wants you to do.  I pray that you will be able to see that HE will only tell you what you need to do.  I pray for healing and restoration for your marriage, and pray that you both will come to know HIS love, HIS unfailing, grace filled, mercy given love.  I pray for the lines of communication for you and your spouse to be opened, just by you opening your eyes to see them through HIS eyes.


Sunday, February 23, 2014

did I really sign up for this?

"If our relationship with GOD gets beyond talk..... we are in for some pain."  Pastor Dave Mudd, Alpine Church

I guess I will start this blog off by letting you all know that I am in a new season of growing, and with that I am also in a new season of thinking.  For the longest time I have said that growing is tough, however since I have started this new season HE has revealed to me just how AWESOME growing is.  I won't tell you that growing has been easy, but I can tell you that it has been worth every single bit of pain that I have endured. 

I love how when I am feeling convicted about how whether or not I am modeling CHRIST for others, HE quickly lets me know where I am falling short.  I am thankful today for HIS Daily Teachings to let me know that I really did sign up for this.  This meaning, the CHRIST LEAD life!  

For some reason I foolishly thought that by accepting HIM as LORD of my life, then everything would just be "easy."  On the contrary HE is letting me know that not only isn't it easy, but that I will have to endure pain and suffering in this life that I am given when I choose to do what HE tells me to do, because of WHO HE is, what HE has done, and what HE will continue to do.  Once again HE has reminded me that I am going to suffer just as HE did, because I have chosen (meaning I have died unto myself, and am picking up my cross daily to walk with HIM)   

"If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross, and follow me." Mark 8:34

Today when our Pastor said that the message was going to "really be in your face," I prayed, "LORD let me hear everything that I need to know.  I am ready for YOU to teach,lead, and guide me through YOUR message."

We have been listening to our Pastor preach on a series called "Misfits."  "Misfits" is the term for those who have chosen to follow HIM, and to strive each and everyday to make sure that what they do, think, and say are all a reflection of WHO HE is.  This means that no matter what may be happening in their lives, how badly they are hurting, you will be able to see CHRIST flowing through them, and out of them.  You will be able to look at them and see HIS light, feel HIS love, witness HIS compassion, and be blessed with HIS grace.

True to my Pastor's warning the very first scripture he read, was really in my face, so much in fact that I broke into tears.... and continued crying for the next 20 minutes.  

 " Dear friends, don’t be surprised at the fiery trials you are going through, as if something strange were happening to you." 1 Peter 4:12

HE is wanting me to know that it should be of no surprise to me, that when I live out my faith, there will be people who completely disagree with me, and will feel the "need" to let me know that I am wrong.  HE is wanting me to know and understand completely that every single trial, and test is designed specifically for me, so that HE will be able to stretch and grow my faith in HIM.  HE is teaching me that everything that I am suffering for because of my faith has been for HIS plan and HIS purpose for my life.

One of the biggest areas of struggle I have in my life of faith is choosing to always be the one who goes first. I say this because, really I have grown to be so weary of always being the one who goes first.  By this I mean, being the first to apologize, to love beyond being hurt, to forgive, to extend grace, to show mercy, to in what the world's view says, "letting them get away it."  HE is wanting me to know that no one is getting away with anything,  but rather I am gaining something so precious, and that is my righteousness in HIM.  HE is showing me that when I choose to follow HIM, and do what HE tells me to do, ALL praise, honor, and glory are being given to HIM.  When I choose to forgive others, JESUS HOLY name is glorified for all to see.  

"The ROCK won't move and HIS word is strong, the ROCK won't move and HIS love can't be undone.  The Rock of our Salvation"  Vertical Church Band  "The Rock won't move" 

As we sang those lyrics this morning, I found myself so caught up in HIS grace, as I felt HIM saying to me, "do not worry about anything, all this is happening for MY plan and MY purpose for your life.  I am doing all of this to grow you stronger and because I love you too much to leave you where you are."

Today I am confident that HE wanted to fill me with as much of HIS word that I could possibly handle in one message.  My Pastor read over 20 scriptures that said of the pain and suffering that I would endure in choosing to follow HIM, to live out HIS will, and to live in righteousness of HIM.  HE is wanting me to know that HE did this so that if ever I begin to doubt what HIS calling is for my life, all I have to do is look into HIS word, draw close to HIM, and HE will reveal to me everything that I need to know.

HE is wanting me to know that in choosing to follow HIM means that I am going to be put at odds with other's.  Other's including my own family.  HE is wanting me to know that HIS calling for my life, is designed specifically for just me, that HIS calling is a one-of-a-kind just for me.  HE is reminding me of all that I have been through, where I was when HE found me, when HE captured my heart, when HE began teaching me, and just how far I have come, because I have chosen to seek HIM daily, and have asked HIM to teach, lead, and guide me throughout every single step of my journey towards wholeness with HIM.

"Everyone who acknowledges me publicly here on earth, I will also acknowledge before my Father in heaven. But everyone who denies me here on earth, I will also deny before my Father in heaven. Don’t imagine that I came to bring peace to the earth! I came not to bring peace, but a sword. I have come to set a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law. Your enemies will be right in your own household!" 

HE is wanting me to know that instead of crying because I am suffering, HE wants me to rejoice that I am choosing to live so differently that people can't help but to notice.  Instead of wishing I could be like everyone else, and be accepted, I must choose to be thankful that I am a one-of-a-kind, that I am living for HIM and only HIM.  I am learning that I must rejoice that I am being tested to see just how strong my faith in HIM really is, and I am able to answer the question, "did I really sign up for this?" with a resounding YES!!!!

"What blessings await you when people hate you and exclude you and mock you and curse you as evil because you follow the Son of Man.  When that happens, be happy! Yes, leap for joy! For a great reward awaits you in heaven. And remember, their ancestors treated the ancient prophets that same way." Luke 6:22-23

HE is wanting me to know that HE is using ALL of WHO I am and all of what I do for HIS plan and HIS purpose for my life.  HE is wanting me to  know that because I have chosen to walk with HIM, according to HIS will, I will suffer for it.  Therefore, I must be obedient, and not act on my "feelings" but rather act as HE has called me to.  This means that if I am going to come under HIS will, I must get the mindset of being "set apart" from the ways of this world.  I must learn to say NO to this "all about self" world, and say YES to HIM!  I am learning that in choosing to say YES, this means that I am standing with arms wide open, willing, ready, and waiting for HIM to tell me where to go.  I must remember that I don't belong to this world, rather I belong to HIM.

"If the world hates you, remember that it hated me first.19 The world would love you as one of its own if you belonged to it, but you are no longer part of the world. I chose you to come out of the world, so it hates you. Do you remember what I told you? ‘A slave is not greater than the master.’ Since they persecuted me, naturally they will persecute you. And if they had listened to me, they would listen to you." John 15:18-20

Today HE is filling me with HIS word, as it has been written in the BIBLE how we are called to suffer just as HE did, and as we are suffering, to rejoice, as HE is worth suffering for, because after all HE paid ultimate price for me, for my sins, and that in of itself is worth ALL of the pain and suffering that I have had to because of my faith.  It is because of HIS unfailing love, that I am able to go first, love first, forgiven first, extend grace first, and show mercy first.

"For his Spirit joins with our spirit to affirm that we are God’s children.  And since we are his children, we are his heirs. In fact, together with Christ we are heirs of God’s glory. But if we are to share his glory, we must also share his suffering.  Yet what we suffer now is nothing compared to the glory he will reveal to us later." Romans 8:16-18

He is wanting me to know that it is because I am the daughter of THE KING, that I, Heather, am HIS heir of HIS FATHER's glory.  HE is telling me that in being chosen means that HE when I come under HIS will, will testify for me on my day of judgement that HE knew me in this life that I am living right now.  HE is wanting me to know that the all the pain and suffering that I am enduring is for GOD's plan for my life so that HE will be glorified in every area of my life!

"The others accepted his advice. They called in the apostles and had them flogged. Then they ordered them never again to speak in the name of Jesus, and they let them go. The apostles left the high council rejoicing that God had counted them worthy to suffer disgrace for the name of Jesus.  And every day, in the Temple and from house to house, they continued to teach and preach this message: “Jesus is the Messiah.” Acts 5:40-42

This is HIS loving reminder that I in being chosen I am NOT alone.  Today I am comforted in knowing that other's have suffered in the same way I am, and have helped write a "beautiful message" of HIS hope, and how with HIM they too were able to endure, and their lives glorified HIM in every single area known to man.

"We work wearily with our own hands to earn our living. We bless those who curse us. We are patient with those who abuse us." 1 Corinthians 4:12

I have endured much in my short life, but it is because HE is my hope that I have been able to endure, and forgive those who have hurt me.  It is because I have chosen to BELIEVE that my reward for obedience will far out weight the short-lived satisfaction I would otherwise have in holding onto grudges and wishing ill-will on those who hurt me.  HE has asked me to trust HIM, and know that HE truly does have my best interest at heart, and because HE has proven HIMSELF time and again, I do trust HIM, and it is because of my trust in HIM, I know that HE is my anchor, HE is my hope that keeps me firmly planted on the ROCK of my Salvation.

" For the more we suffer for Christ, the more God will shower us with his comfort through Christ." 2 Corinthians 1:5

If ever I find myself asking myself, "did I really sign up for this?" all I will have to do is remember all the times where HE has been my source of comfort.  Even long before I even knew it was HIM.  I am so thankful to say that in searching for HIM, seeking HIM daily, has drawn  me closer to HIM with each day passing, and every day I am learning more about HIS unfailing love for me, and just how far HE would go, is going, and has gone for me.  

"Those who are trying to force you to be circumcised want to look good to others. They don’t want to be persecuted for teaching that the cross of Christ alone can save." Galatians 6:12

HE is teaching me that being chosen I must let go of my "need" to be right with this world, and speak  HIS truth, and make sure that my life of faith is lived out as a constant reflection of WHO HE is.   I must keep my focus on HIM on what HE is telling me to do, and stop worrying so much about being "popular" and pleasing to this world.  Furthermore, I must let go of my need to let other's know that I am "right" and instead be right with HIM as I come under HIS will, and live out HIS plan and HIS purpose for my life.

"For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places." Ephesians 6:12

HE is wanting me to remember that I am NOT called here to persecute and judge people, but rather to love them, as when I do I am fighting against the evil of the unseen world.  HE is wanting me to do that when I choose to do the opposite of what the world tells me to, Satan loses one more battle.  It is because I know that in the end that JESUS wins, and JESUS saves!

My final thought for today is this, if at the end my life on this side of Heaven I will have left a mark of compassion, love, grace, tenderness, kindness, mercy, forgiveness, and most importantly love.  Then I will have done my small part of bringing HIS kingdom of HEAVEN here to Earth.  If I will have left a legacy that changes my families generational legacies for all the world to know and see, then I know when I meet GOD face to face HE will say to me "Well done good and faithful servant."   Oh how I long for that day, to hear those sweet words.....

I pray today that if you are questioning whether or not you can do this, that you will know the answer is YES.  I pray that you will have the courage to endure the pain and suffering and rejoice because you will know that you too have been chosen.  I pray that if you don't  know JESUS, I pray that you will seek HIM today, right now, and ask HIM to come into your heart.  I pray for HIS favor and blessings to be poured over your life when you do.  I pray that when you come to know HIM, you will be filled with a peace and comfort that surpasses anything of this world.  I pray today that you will have the courage to sign up!


Tuesday, February 18, 2014


This past summer our family was gifted two cream colored couches.  These are probably the most comfortable couches we've ever had.   However, we weren't able to use them in our last house, as it was too small.  So naturally when we moved to our new home, and it was much bigger, I was excited that we were going to be able to use them.  

If you were to come over to my house these days you would probably say that we have a lovely home, but upon closer inspection you would see that most everything in our home is flawed.  The same goes for those two couches.  When I first realized that I couldn't clean them up anymore, and that they would be flawed... my heart sank, and that is when I heard this from HIM "Heather, do I not love you?  Are you not flawed?  Just as you are flawed.... so are these couches, but you will love them, and they will suit your family well.  It is because I love you that I want you to understand that being flawed.... doesn't mean that your are unlikeable, or even unlovable."

I had forgotten about that conversation that I had with HIM this past summer, well that is until I realized what today's teaching was going to be about.  HIS Daily Teaching today is HIS loving reminder to me that I must choose to NOT be so urgent in pointing out that someone is also flawed.....

I have three daughters, and two sons.  My job as Mama is to train them up right, to be able to help take care of our home.  Along the way of training them, as I have been for almost 15 years now, I have sadly pointed out that they too are in fact flawed..... 

This morning HE is wanting me to  know that I am very critical, and judgemental when it comes to others, because I am very critical and judgemental when it comes to myself.  OUCH!!!! That is a tough pill to swallow, as I don't want to be known as either.  HE is telling me I am this way, because of the way I was raised.   HE is wanting me to know that I too am  flawed.... but I am NOT a lost cause, I am teachable, so its time that I let HIM teach me WHO I need to be in my relationships with others, and what I need to say, and how I need to act.

HE first started off today's teaching with HIS word as it is written:

"Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need." Matthew 6:33

HE is wanting me to say that I, Heather am in right standing with GOD, therefore because I am in right standing, I am able to do what HE says I should do, and my need to point out other's flaws, will become my need to fill them up with life-building words.   It is through HIS word that I am able to know and BELIEVE, and trust that HE is WHO HE says HE is, and that HE will do what HE says HE will do!

I am able to say this, because in my journey of seeking, and BELIEVING HIM, has changed my life.  Now days when I look at my life, my past, my present, and my future, so many things are so much clearer.  I have learned that the more I seek HIM, the more I find HIM, and the more I find HIM, means that I get to experience HIM working in my life, knowing that it is HIM working in my life.  In knowing this, that HE is working in me, I think that is really cool!

HE is wanting me to know that in order to love & like just as HE loves and likes me, even though I am flawed.... I, Heather must let go of my incessant need to criticize other people.  I must let going of my thinking that says, "oh I am not trying to hurt them, I'm trying to help them."  HE is wanting me to know that if something needs to be changed about them, then HE will be the one to do it.  I must keep my helping focused on myself, as I need all the help I can get!

Kay Warren's words really resonated with me this morning, "Because you're not happy with yourself, you're not happy with others."  HE is teaching me that I see that other's are flawed.... because I myself am flawed.... 

HE is wanting me to know that it is NOT my job to point out anyone elses imperfections.  This morning HE is working hard on my heart about gossiping.  Though I would like to "think" that I don't gossip, HE is wanting me to know that just by allowing a conversation to be about someone else, who isn't even there to tell me themselves, I am allowing gossip to enter my heart and mind.  HE is wanting me to know that when I do this, every time I allow this, it changes me, and it allows the world's view to enter my heart, and kicks a little more of HIM out of me.  I know that I need all of HIM in me, therefore I must be willing to shut-down any and all talks of gossip, and decline invitations that are centered around gossip.  

HE is wanting me to know that gossiping about someone is merely pointing out their flaws to other people and when I choose to gossip I am also letting people know that I am judgemental.  OUCH!!!  Okay, so it's getting real in here today!  

HE is telling me that when I choose to focus on a person that is flawed.... I miss out on the true beauty that is within them.  HE is telling me that if I am not careful not only will I miss that, but I will also ruin any chance that I may be given to have a relationship with that person.

HIS Daily Teachings today has really been staring me hard in the face, as I know that HE is wanting me to know and understand the importance of keeping my focus on HIM.  Though I have read the book of Romans in my bible before, NEVER have I understood the importance of HIS teaching as I have this morning.

"You may think you can condemn such people, but you are just as bad, and you have no excuse! When you say they are wicked and should be punished, you are condemning yourself, for you who judge others do these very same things." Romans 2:1

There is a saying about husband and wives, "Oh you know who wears the pants in that family!"  I was raised by this mentality.  That the wife needed to "train" the husband to be who SHE wanted him to be, and everything that she seemed to "love" when she first met him, because the very reason why she now "needed" to "train him."  I received this very advice from someone shortly after D and I were married.

That very logic didn't sit too well with me, and so I made it a promise to him and to myself that I would NEVER be the kind of wife who felt as if though she "needed" to "train" her husband.  Even through my promise, HE is showing me this morning that I have failed to keep it.  HE is wanting me to know that little by little I have made agreements in my heart about WHO my husband really is.  HE has revealed to me today that even though my husband is flawed.... he is in fact amazing in so many ways.  D is not "stupid or lazy."  He helps me with our five children whenever he can, he is a hard worker, who provides for our family in every way.  He is sensitive, and he has a heart, and he has feelings, and when I choose to be his "joy killer," I rob him of HIS JOY, and I ultimately destroy a little more of his spirit, and our relationship.

HE is really wanting me to focus on HIS words this morning, "Just as I love you, you need to love others flaws and all."

“Do not judge others, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn others, or it will all come back against you. Forgive others, and you will be forgiven." Luke 6:37

This morning HE is reminding me to T.H.I.N.K. before I speak.  It is because I know that my mouth tends to run before my brain has even had a chance to process and because of this I have chosen to be critical and judgemental of others.

"We kill joy when we can't offer others non-judgemental love" Kay Warren "Choose JOY"

This past weekend D and I held a family meeting with our five blessings.  It had become very apparent to us that we were allowing worldly views to be the center focus on our family.  We knew that we needed to change our families way of thinking before all hearts, minds, and spirits were changed.  In searching for the answer as to what we needed to do, GOD lead us straight to HIS word.

"And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise." Philippians 4:8

Just as yesterday's teaching was about how it all starts with me, HE is wanting me to know that when I model what HE is saying in the above scripture, that is when I will be able to teach my children how to T.H.I.N.K. ~ T-is is true? H-is it honoring?  I-is it inspiring? N-is it necessary? K-is it kind?  It is because I do not wish to be raising critical, judgemental children, that I must get my focus off the fact that other's are flawed.... and get my focus on HIS love, and how HE loves, and seek HIM to create in me a heart like HIS, so that I am able to LOVE how HE loves.

"Where you put your focus and your energy is going to determine how successful that relationship is" Kay Warren "Choose JOY"

I am learning that I must keep my focus on what's right, what's good, and what's worthy of respect in people.  HE is wanting me to know that in ALL of my relationships HIS JOY is there.  Today HE is challenging me by saying, "MY JOY is there for the taking, are you going to be a JOY builder or a JOY killer?"  Today HE is wanting me to know that I, Heather, a broken sinner, who makes mistakes and falls on  her face daily am covered by HIS blood, and HE loves me..... flaws and all.  HE is wanting me to ask myself if I am able to love other's even though they are flawed....  "yes ,yes I am, I Heather am flawed... and it is because I am flawed.... I need HIM."

I pray today that you will seek HIM and ask HIM to soften your heart towards others.  I pray that during your interactions with people today that you will be able to see them for who they are.  I pray that you will seek HIM to create in you a love like HIS.  I pray that you will be able to move past the fact that you are in fact flawed.... and that other people are also flawed.... I pray for HIS vision to be your vision so that you will be JOY builders.


Monday, February 17, 2014

happily ever after???

D and I have been married for 15 years now, and I can honestly tell you that while we have loved each other, there were times where we didn't like each other very much.  There have been days where I look at him and question why in the world are we still married.  This past year has been one of those season's in my life, and because HE loves me so much, HE has been working very hard on me to see that the "Happily Ever After," that I so desperately want to be for our marriage, well it starts with me.

I will be honest in saying that when I first heard HIM say, "It starts with you Heather!"  I groaned, and well in all honesty I  pouted, and sulked, as to say, "oh GOD why me?  YOUR already changing me in so many other areas, he's NOT doing ANYTHING!!!!"  In reading that now of what I just wrote, I am embarrassed that I would even allow my thoughts to go there.

Last Wednesday was a HUGE turning point in our marriage, on of which was full of sorrow and pain, but HE has been right there with us, leading each of us, straight into HIS arms, and we know that because we are drawing closer to HIM, we are coming closer to each other.  

On Valentine's Day, D surprised me with many gifts.  I was in shock as we don't usually get each other anything.  It just so happens that our favorite Christian store was closing, and everything was half price.  Through my prayers of GOD reaching D, HE allowed D to purchase many books on marriage, for not only me to read, but for him to read as well.  As I took each one out of the bag, my eyes welled up with tears.  The words D spoke so beautifully about our marriage told me that he too was desiring a "happily ever after" marriage.

Last night was our first night of devotional, and it reminded D and I that we need to laugh more.  When we were first dating, and in the early years of our marriage we laughed ALL of the time.  We would laugh so much at night in our bed, that our sides would hurt.  We would literally fall asleep to one another's laughter.  Even in our times of  sorrow, we had still managed to make each other laugh.  

This morning HE has revealed that is HIS gift to me, to have a husband like D, who strives to see me laugh.  A husband who does silly things just to see his wife crack up, and know how much he loves her just by the way he's looking at her.  Unfortunately for D, I am a wreck at times, and I all too often fail to see that the things that "annoy" me about him, are really designed to make me laugh, and so that I will be happy.

A good friend of ours once said, "A happy wife is a happy life."  I never quite understood that saying, well that is until I started reading my latest book.  "31 Days to Becoming a Happy Wife."  Oh there is that word again, becoming.

HE is wanting me to know that becoming, a happy wife means that I am to be flattering.  One of my greatest desires is for D to brag about me to other people.  I long to hear him tell people how awesome his wife is, and and who she is.  D, however doesn't share my same longing, and really finds it annoying that he would have to do something like that for me to know how he feels about me.

I am learning that being flattering means that a happy wife is beautiful and attractive.  HE is letting me know that NO amount of makeup or clothes will ever make me more beautiful or attractive than when my happiness, HIS JOY shines through me!

HE is telling me that my journey to becoming is a process of coming to be something.  In choosing to be becoming, means that I will seek HIM Daily to teach lead, and guide me, so that I will able to be the wife for D that GOD has designed for me to be!  I must know and understand that I was chosen specifically for D.  

HE is wanting me to know that becoming a happy wife means that I choose to be proper, suitable, and fitting.  Meaning that I must choose to act happy being D's wife.  HE is telling me that it shouldn't be strange or unusual for me to be happy.  HE is telling me this because I know that being happy has been such a foreign concept to me, as I never really experienced it until I met D.

Through the gift of this awesome book, HE has broken down what the word happy means for me, and how to apply it to my life.

H ~ Hopeful ~ I am learning that HOPE is the foundation for my marriage to D.  Therefore, I     must place my hope in HIM so that when I draw near to HIM so will D.  HE will bring us closer     together.  HE is lovingly reminding me of a pivotal moment in our walk with HIM at a marriage     class we once took.   The "triangle effect"  There are three points to a triangle, GOD is the     top center, and the husband and wife are the sides.  When the husband and wife try and       travel the distance across that takes a long time, however when they each go up  their side towards GOD, they will be closer to each other than if they  "tried" to travel the distance.  

A ~ Adaptable ~ HE is telling me that I must be willing to accept gracefully.  I must learn to         "Roll With the Punches," and NOT get all "worked up" when things aren't going the way I envisioned them to go.  Once again, HE is reminding me of the importance to my               Becoming Mary.

P ~ Positive ~  I am learning that being positive means that I will be a 'breath of fresh air," for     D when he has had a long trying day with a client, or a long day at the office.  HE is               telling me that in order to be just that, I must choose to smile, forgive easily, and be           uplifting, and life building with my words and actions.  

P ~ Purpose ~ HE is wanting me to know and remember that it is HIS plan, and HIS purpose     that I am D's wife.  Not only that, but I was designed specifically for D.  This puts me in           complete awe to know that I was created to be D's wife.

Y ~ Yielded ~ This for me in the hardest area of surrender for me.  HE is telling me that NOT     only must I  come under HIS authority, but I must also be submissive to D as well.  HE is             wanting me to know that I must respect what D is saying, even if I may not agree with him.         HE is telling me that when I allow HIM to take control over my heart and home, I will be           filled with HIS Endless JOY and it will pour out of me, and onto D.  My JOY will be the           reason for his joy.  

This to me is hard as I know that in order for me to truly be a happy wife, I must be ready to listen.  Not only that, but I must choose to be humble, and NOT proud!  I must NOT complain about how hard things are for me. I must choose to be thankful for the life that I have been given, and for my marriage to D, especially on the days where I am questioning, GOD, where's my "happily ever after?"

HE is wanting me to know that just as HE took me through a breakthrough almost ten months ago, HE is know taking me through another one in my marriage to D.  HIS Daily Teachings today is to let me know that the "happily ever after" that I want for my marriage has to start with me.  

The first thing HE is wanting me to know is that knowing that my marriage to D takes work shouldn't be negative thing for me.  HE is wanting me to know that even though my marriage isn't a "fairy tale," it's okay. This morning HE is showing me that my marriage is real, it is growing, and because it is growing, it is thriving. HE is wanting me to meditate on HIS words today, "You, Heather, cannot depend on D to provide you with your happiness, it IS your job!"

This morning HE is revealing to me where my happiness can be found.  When I chose to serve D before he serves me.  This means getting my thoughts away from "why should I do anything more for him, he NEVER does anything for me."  I must seek HIM to teach, guide and lead me to be D's wife, as HE is the ONE who created HIM, and therefore HE knows D best, and knows what he needs.  I must stop doing whatever I "think" is best, and ask HIM what is best.  I must also choose to make wise decisions and NOT wait around for my circumstances to be just right, and convenient for me.  

Today HE is telling me is a NEW BEGINNING for me, as HE is the GOD of NEW BEGINNINGS.

“But forget all that—   it is nothing compared to what I am going to do. For I am about to do something new.  See, I have already begun! Do you not see it? I will make a pathway through the wilderness.  I will create rivers in the dry wasteland." Isaiah 43:18-19

Today I am thankful that in my struggle to becoming, that I know that HE is there, and HE is waiting for me to surrender to HIS will, and HIS plan for my life.  I am thankful to know that HE is my GOD of hope, therefore I must place ALL of my hope in HIM.  I am thankful that the "happily ever after" that I am searching for can be found in HIM.  I am thankful that HE loves me enough to capture my heart once again and show me where my thinking has been distorted.  

I heard a song yesterday that my sister-in-love sent to me, and it described me perfectly.  The feelings of  "I don't deserve YOU GOD," are explained so beautifully in this song.  Today I am cherishing this song, as it is HIS gift to me, to remind me of WHO HE is, and WHO HE will continue to be in my life.  I am thankful that I know that my hope is in HIM the same today, as it will be tomorrow. 

"Don't Deserve You" by "Plumb"
You're the first face that I see
And the last thing I think about
You're the reason that I'm alive
You're what I can't live without
You're what I can't live without

You never give up
When I'm falling apart
Your arms are always open wide
And you're quick to forgive
When I make a mistake
You love me in the blink of an eye

I don't deserve your love
But you give it to me anyway
Can't get enough
You're everything I need
And when I walk away
You take off running and come right after me
It's what you do
And I don't deserve you

You're the light inside my eyes
You give me a reason to keep trying
You give me more than I could dream
And you bring me to my knees
You bring me to my knees

Your heart is gold and how am I the one
That you've chosen to love
I still can't believe that you're right next to me
After all that I've done

I don't deserve your love
But you give it to me anyway
Can't get enough
You're everything I need
And when I walk away
You take off running and come right after me
It's what you do
And I don't deserve you

I don't deserve a chance like this
I don't deserve a love that gives me everything
You're everything I want

I don't deserve your love
But you give it to me anyway
Can't get enough
You're everything I need
And when I walk away
You take off running and come right after me
It's what you do
And I don't deserve you
And I don't deserve you

I pray today that you will know the "happily ever after" that you are searching for can only be found in HIM.  I pray that you will turn from "your way," and make HIS way the vision for your life.  I pray that you will know that no matter what you may have done in your past, HE is there, HE is waiting for you, and HE's running after you, just turn around, and HE will meet you right where you stand.