Have you ever wondered...

June 29, 2012

This post is like no other I have posted, but I wanted you to meet someone. 
This is Fluffy, my only female cat who we adopted from a friend of mine. 
Fluffy is quite the adventurer. 

She loves to be outside.
She is a hunter and has brought home many mice, moles, birds and yes, even a rabbit. 
Last year when we were on vacation she escaped. My dad was coming by the house to feed and check in on the cats. One day he noticed 'the fluffy one' was missing and there was a HUGE hole in our bathroom screen window! 
Yes, she is a true adventurer! Always on the go. When she would come inside, it would be to steal a quick nap under a bed somewhere, grab a bite to eat and off again she would go! She never let me hold her for more than a few seconds. She would growl and hiss at me and the other cats. 

I so wanted to just hold her and snuggle with her! She is so soft and fluffy I could never resist, but she always never wanted me to. 

Then one day this past January, Fluffy went missing. She was missing for 3 nights when I got a call from her previous owner. "Is Fluffy missing?" 
"YES! You know where she is?" 
"Yes, animal rescue called and she is hurt pretty bad."

I immediately made arrangements for someone to watch my kids while I drove to the emergency animal hospital. Thoughts of what was I going to do raced through my head and tears stung at my eyes. I was pretty sure I knew my decision by the time I arrived at the hospital. I was expecting the worst.
Fluffy at the hospital
Fluffy's both front legs were broken in several places. 
As I met with the doctor who explained what the surgery would entail all I kept thinking was I can't end this cats life. There is a reason she was found.
Well, after six L O N G months of recovery, Fluffy is healed! She has a slight limp, but she can run and jump and play! 
I still often wonder why God? I know in my heart there is a lesson here, but I just can't figure it out. See, Fluffy's legs were not only healed, she is now a changed cat! Her demeanor has changed. I don't know how she behaved with her previous owner, but I tend to wonder if she was just mad. Her life had changed by moving into a new home with other cats and loud boys! To me she just appeared to be bitter. 
Do you know anyone like that? Someone who just can't accept change and remains bitter and mean?

Fluffy is now my sweetheart kitty, a princess and such a joy! She is more sociable, she comes out and hangs with the family, plays with one of the other cats, and loves to lay on my lap. She purrs every time I touch her!

Have a blessed day!

His Endless Gifts: Freedom

June 28, 2012

 This post is part of the His Endless Gifts series. I would love for you to join me every week. If you haven't already, please subscribe so you don't miss out!
When I started thinking about what I would write for this post, I could not stop singing, "Freedom Reigns" by Jesus Culture. So of course, I had to listen to it...over and over and over again. I even added it here, so you can listen with me! Oh, and I don't mind at all if you sing along too ;-)


What does freedom mean to you?
I'm sure it means many different things to each of us depending on our past experiences and circumstances. Of course, I think of our fellow men and women in the military who dedicate their lives fighting for our freedom. Then there is financial freedom and maybe you might even think freedom from prison. But, I believe  above all, it is the gift of freedom God gives us.

We have freedom through Jesus Christ!
What does that mean? It means through Jesus' death on the cross He gave us freedom from sin's deadly grasp. He bore ALL our sin and defeated death once and for all. As believers, our old self died on the cross with Him and we are no longer slaves to sin. (Rom 6:6 ) He has set us free! 

"It was for freedom that Christ set us free; therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery." Galatians 5:1 NASB

But, this freedom doesn't give us an excuse to keep on sinning. Since we died with Christ, we shall also live with Him.

"For you were called to freedom, brethren; only do not turn your freedom into an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another." Galatians 5:13 NASB

I know the world can be over bearing at times with trial after trials to the point we almost just want to quit, but there is hope in Jesus. Let's lift our eyes to heaven and allow Him to reign in our lives.Let's experience His showers of mercy and grace and live in freedom!

Are you with me?

Have a blessed day!

Did you miss previous gifts in this series? No problem! You can catch up here: hopelovesalvationfaithpeacejoygrace, purpose and righteousness. Please join me next week as we celebrate the gift of healing.

His Endless Gifts: Righteousness

June 26, 2012

This post is part of the His Endless Gifts series. I would love for you to join me every week. If you haven't already, please subscribe so you don't miss out!
I am having a great time with this series! I hope you are enjoying it as much as I am!  :-) There really are so many wonderful gifts God blesses us with and I am really enjoying spending time intentionally reflecting on what each one means to me. I believe one is no greater than the other, but all are equally important. Many of these gifts are God's own character that He blesses us with.

“Behold, the days are coming,” declares the Lord,
“When I will raise up for David a righteous Branch;
And He will reign as king and act wisely
And do justice and righteousness in the land.
 “In His days Judah will be saved,
And Israel will dwell securely;
And this is His name by which He will be called,
The Lord our righteousness.’
Jeremiah 23: 5-6

What I love about this verse is that it says, "The Lord is OUR righteousness, not 'the Lord is righteousness'. Although that is very true, but stating He is 'OUR righteousness' is a perfect example of how much He loves us that He would extend His righteousness to us.

"He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him." 2 Corinthians 5:21

When we walk with the Lord we are to die to ourselves daily. We become new creatures in Him. We are to live our lives according to His standards, which are straight and just and right. We become hidden in Christ Jesus. 
"For you have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God." Col 3:3 NASB

It is not because of anything we have done, it is because of what Christ has done for us. It is through Jesus Christ that we can have a right relationship with God and I am ever so thankful for what He did on the cross for me and YOU! Amen?!!?

Have a blessed day!

Did you miss previous gifts in this series? No problem! You can catch up here: hopelovesalvationfaithpeacejoygrace, and purpose. Please join me next week as we celebrate the gift of freedom.

His Endless Gifts: Purpose

June 15, 2012

 This post is part of the His Endless Gifts series. I would love for you to join me every week. If you haven't already, please subscribe so you don't miss out!

"For You formed my inward parts, You wove me in my mothers womb. I will give thanks to You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made, wonderful are Your works, and my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from You, when I was made in secret, and skillfully wrought in the depths of the earth; Your eyes have seen my unformed substance; and in Your book were all written the days that were ordained for me, when as yet there was not one of them." Psalm 139:13-16 NASB

Have you ever looked back over your life and reflect on where God has brought you? Maybe you have known Him all your life or maybe you have only known of Him or maybe you have never known Him and are just learning of Him now.

I often think back on my life from the time when I was empty and lost, constantly looking for something or someone to fill the God size hole within me. And although, I now know He is the only one who can fill that hole, I still can't stop wishing I knew who I was in Him back then. Did I mess up as a child by not grasping how big His love is that He died for me? Is it my fault I wandered around in the wilderness for approximately 30 years? Or was this part of His plan for my life? I suppose I will find out the answers to all my questions one day. Reflecting on the past only reminds me of how awesome a Savior He is and that He created all of us with a plan in mind.

He made all of us in His image. He knitted us together in our mother's womb and He knew us before we even existed. He created us for a purpose. He created us to live at this specific time in all of creation for His purpose. Don't ever think you are unworthy or you were a mistake. God doesn't make mistakes! His plan is always perfect!

I now can hold my head high with confidence that I am a child of God and I was made for a purpose. A purpose to serve Him.

Dear Lord,
I lift this reader up to You today, Lord that they know how great Your love is. I pray they know who they are in You, that You created each and everyone of us with a purpose. We are all worthy and valued in Your eyes. Help us to be bold and confident to share Your good news with everyone we meet, to let Your light shine through us.
In Jesus' Name,

Did you miss previous gifts in this series? No problem! You can catch up here: hopelovesalvationfaithpeace, joy and grace. Please join me next week as we will be celebrating the gift of righteousness.

Love So Amazing!

June 14, 2012

I have never known love as the love I have for my kids and the love they give in return! This beautiful love so amazing is only possible because He first loved us! (1 John 4:19)

I know God's love for us is much more than this love I feel. I know it is too great for us to understand fully. This love so great and wonderful my heart feels like it’s going to burst and I stand in awe and thanksgiving at how awesome our God is. He continues to bless us by freely giving us His love so we can love. We have done nothing to deserve His love, yet He pours it out showering us with it, so it can flow through us to others. His love is what allows me to love my children and others. 

Photo Credit: Laura J Lee
Yesterday I was a bit cranky. I didn't sleep well the night before and my patience was a bit thin. I usually have no problem serving my kids. You know doing the things they need help with, fulfilling requests and ensuring they say please and thank you. But sometimes when I'm exhausted the selfish 'mama bear' comes out of the cave. I just can't do one more thing. God, please give me the strength! And my sinful flesh gets more and more frustrated.

So last night, I was telling my oldest to get ready for bed over and over again. Why is he not listening? He is huddled in the corner at my desk with his face intent and his hands quickly working. He looks up at me and says mom, close your eyes! Okay, I close my eyes waiting for him to tell me to open them. As I'm thinking if I keep them closed any longer I might just fall asleep, he exclaims, "Open!"

He hands me what he was working on. "I LUV U” was written across the top with a picture of him and me in the middle.  There are lots of hearts around us. The page is filled with them!  X's and O's fill up the rest of the paper. My heart spills over and I hug him SO big and hard. "It’s beautiful! Thank you!" He says, "Wait! There is more!" On the back he wrote, "Der Mome u r the best mom ever XOXOXOXO!" 

It’s these moments I don't ever want to forget. It’s these moments I don't ever want to take for granted. It’s these moments where God's love overflows through my children and right into my heart. And I don't deserve it. Right away grace and love and mercy flood my head, my heart and my soul. 

"I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources he will empower you with inner strength through his Spirit. Then Christ will make his home in your hearts as you trust in him. Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong.  And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is. May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God. Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think." Ephesians 3:16-20

Have a blessed day!

A Beautiful Moment

June 13, 2012

I saw something beautiful the other day. 

Okay, so the rainbow in itself is no doubt a marvelous work of God, but to see people actually stopping in that moment, pulling over to the side of the road, taking pictures and soaking it in. 


It was rush hour and it excited me to see others looking up and pausing from wherever it was they were going to try and capture a glorious moment

And God said, “This is the sign of the covenant I am making between me and you and every living creature with you, a covenant for all generations to come:  I have set my rainbow in the clouds, and it will be the sign of the covenant between me and the earth.  Whenever I bring clouds over the earth and the rainbow appears in the clouds,  I will remember my covenant between me and you and all living creatures of every kind. Never again will the waters become a flood to destroy all life.  Whenever the rainbow appears in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and all living creatures of every kind on the earth.” Genesis 9:12-16

Have a blessed day!

His Endless Gifts: Grace

June 07, 2012

 This post is part of the His Endless Gifts series. I would love for you to join me every week. If you haven't already, please subscribe so you don't miss out!


So what exactly is this grace? 

Grace is undeserved love and favor from God. 

And isn't the core of relationships made up of grace? 

Lots of grace? 

Isn't Jesus grace? 

If you are not sure just open your bibles! God sent His one and only son to walk the earth as man, to save us sinners! 

He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, 
so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him. 
2 Corinthians 5:21

Photo Credit: Laura J Lee
We have done nothing to deserve God's awesome gift of grace. He gives grace because He loves us so much. 

Jesus died on the cross for you and me because He loves us so much! 

I don't know about you, but when I really think about that I can't help but praise God! My heart and soul are ever so thankful! How can we not, in turn, extend grace to everyone around us? Oh, I know our hearts mean well and our intentions are good, but in reality it is our flesh that messes up time and time again. But wait! There is hope! See, we cannot do it by our own strength. Oh no, we can only do it with the help of God. To extend grace to others we need the strength and mercy and grace of God. 

So lets allow God's grace to flow through us right on to others. We can't keep it, we need to share it and in doing so, others will experience God's beautiful grace and love. Are you with me?

And He has said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.” Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, 
so that the power of Christ may dwell in me. 
2 Corinthians 12:9

Did you miss previous gifts in this series? No problem! You can catch up here: hopelovesalvationfaith, peace, and joy. Please join me next week as we will be celebrating the gift of purpose.

Today I'm linking up with:

An Example To Follow

June 06, 2012

I often pray and ask God to open my eyes to recognize the needs of others. How can my family bless someone today? And God is always faithful and He has opened my eyes to see and filled my heart with compassion. He has provided opportunities for us to help others around us.

What always fascinates me is how He works, how He orchestrates opportunities and how He always provides the means! Please join me at Bloggers in God today to read the rest!

Race you there! GO!
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