Thursday, February 27, 2014

drive thru style

As I roll up to the little box to order my food..."Hi...can you just give me a minute"

Sometimes I know exactly what I want to order at the drive thru but, I always ask for just one more minute to decide. I am very indecisive =not having or showing the ability to make decisions quickly and effectively.

And restaurants I take forever to order... two things that concern me are the price of the food item and will this satisfy my hunger. How often do we order way too much cause we are afraid that if we're not completely full we will have to inconvenience the waiter/waitress for more food. I am a food junky...especially ranch. All my friends know my obsession and odd love for Ranch. It is soooooo bad for you with a billion calories but it tastes so good.  

I feel like sometimes what I'm hungry for doesn't always hit the spot or satisfy. There are certain fast food joints that I only order the same thing every time....for one I don't like to sway from habit and two, what if it doesn't satisfy and than I'm stuck with it..miserable and still hungry. 

But, there is this one really cool place that all the cool people who live forever hang out. Its called "The well of living water" this place is not somewhere you can physically go to. The food is not edible but it has the most satisfying and quenching menu. All that thirst and hunger that keeps you up at night or keeps you out at night will be met. 


"but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will never be thirsty again. The water that I will give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” John 4:14


We as humans, mankind were created to consume. We all have a deep need to be filled. For our thirst to be met and our hunger to be satisfied. WE all need to feel complete. A great and encouraging verse is found in 

James 1:4 " And let steadfastness have its full effect, 
THAT YOU MAY BE PERFECT AND COMPLETE, LACKING IN NOTHING" 

Our end result, when we have finished the race, we will be perfectly complete lacking in nothing. I love this. Cause it is not based on my performance but rather accepting the transformation.

But many times we are tempted by the soft drinks and tasty cheeseburgers that deceive us from really knowing the true definition of SATISFIED. Growing up I had a lot of issues with how I was viewed, how I wanted a boyfriend, the confidence to get outside my comfort zone, the way I wanted attention. I grasped at things that would have never quenched my craving but rather make it worse. I was willing to settle, to compromise. Now in my head and heart I knew that the things of this world were only temporary...if it be love or lack their of from parents or attention from boys, I wanted what I didn't have. 

In Genesis, Abraham was an old wise man who followed the leading of God without knowing the direction of steps the Lord was calling Him to take. He knew that God had great things for Him, He was even given a promise  

" And I will make of you a great nation, and I will bless you and make your name great, so that you will be a blessing." Gen 12:2

“Behold, my covenant is with you, and you shall be the father of a multitude of nations." 
Gen 17:2

SO, here we have Abraham being told he is going to be a father of MANY nations. And instead of holding onto that promise and being satisfied with it...he goes outside of the promise of God and creates His own idea of that promise. He sleeps with the maidservant. He was given a clear promise....but decided to hunger and thirst after the temporary. 

When I don't fully understand God's forgiveness...I tend to question it. When I don't fully believe that Jesus loves me, all of me...I search for it in other ways. Because part of me doesn't want to get hurt. 

As Christians we are guaranteed life everlasting. We are promised to be made perfectly complete lacking in nothing. WE are promised that the things of this world will NEVER fill our deepest desires, biggest dreams and the whole that longs to be overflowing with love. We must face it and put on the armor of God that will help us resist the thoughts that God isn't enough. 
If you think that God is not enough than your view of Him is very small. He is big. His plans and thoughts and desires and hopes and dreams are bigger and more grand than you could ever hope to know. Do you get it? 

Adam and Eve didn't just eat the fruit cause it looked tasty, they ate it cause they were hungry. They were hungry for the things that were temporary. I find it sad and funny that even with the most perfect mate, perfect communion with God, perfect promise being laid out, they chose the temporary. They chose ashes for the most satisfying and mouth watering feast. We can't overcome this deep hunger and thirst alone. We need His strength.

I'm so like Adam and Eve and Abraham. I don't always want to wait. I settle for less. I trust in my plans rather than His. I try to love my own way instead of loving through Him. I fail. And God knows. And God still gives me promises and still refines me and still satisfies. Because He is good. 

If you are in that place where you are tired of the menu that the world offers you, or tired of always settling or maybe feeling as if you don't deserve to even partake of "the well of living water" than you are not alone. I really want to encourage you to stop and be still before the Lord. Lay your burdens and desires and struggles at His feet.

"Cast your burden on the LORD, and he will sustain you; he will never permit the righteous to be moved." Psalm 55:22

 As as you pray for God to move radically, believe it. Be expectant of Him. When you genuinely seek God, He will desperately seek you.

This is real love at cost. 

-Mis

Wednesday, February 05, 2014

Constant.

Story time

I have been actively serving in ministry since the age of 7.
As my mother would clean the bathrooms at church I would assist her the best I could. She took me to all of the church events to serve at.When I was 12 my mom joined Single's ministry where every Friday night we would set up and tear down. At 13 I joined Children's ministry and assisted in the 4 year old class on Sunday mornings and 1st- 6th grade on Friday nights. I did that for 7 years. And I have been with the high school ministry for 8 1/2 years now. I love serving my Lord. One thing I have learned is to always have Jesus number 1. Although I have always loved Jesus and served Him, my identity was found in fear.

My home life was hard. My mom worked a lot. Parents divorced. My dad lived in another city and I didn't get to see him often. My mom, 2 brothers and I lived with my grandparents and school was the least of my worries. I attended 5 elementary schools alone and all together attended 8 schools.

Most of High School was not a great experience for me. I struggled with my identity in Christ, I had a lot of distractions around me and a lot of temptations. A lot of my friends were into drugs, cutting, stealing, alcohol and like them we both struggled with depression. I find it funny how Jesus protected me, because if anyone would have offered me drugs or an invite to a party or a relationship....I would have said yes. But no one ever did. I would be a couple feet away from my friends as they would light up but was never offered. Without me even knowing it, a light was shining. We were all trying to find our place in this world, some pushed there way into it to make a name for themselves and some just stood there, hoping their time would come. We all wanted what we didn't have...which was love.
Typical day was either walking 2 miles to school or taking the bus and if i woke up too late I would beg my college aged brother to give me a ride so that I wouldn't be late. I most definitely did not want to be there but I was a good kid... so I went. I barely passed my classes, my grades were C to D average, I had no interest in school.Upon arrival to my home I faced one of my brothers making it difficult for me to enter... I was constantly bullied and dealt with verbal abuse. Almost every night I cried wanting more, wanting life to be different. I felt like I didn't fit in and the drive to live was only renewed upon attending church a few times a week. Church was my out, it was my escape from life and the trials I had to face. Going to church was the highlight of my week. I was able to fellowship, be myself, have fun with my christian friends and most of all experience the love of Christ. I knew Jesus was there for me but it was sometimes hard to see the good in the trials. He never left me.
My few friends at school were not Christians, I was probably the only one they knew. Most times during lunch we would make comments about the kids walking by as if we were different or even better than them...but really we were worse. I loathed the jocks and cheerleaders. The teachers only seemed to care about homework and grades. I never felt like they wanted to invest in me. None of them did.
There were a few christian clubs i attended but eventually they died out.

Then at a summer camp before my Junior year, I rededicate my life and started to care how I portrayed Jesus. During Junior year I found a few Christian friends and the Lord started using me, we would talk about Jesus and during lunch discus the bible. I finally felt like I was actually being a light. I finally cared. And when all seemed like life was a little less hard, my mom remarried and we moved away. So the issue of attending a private christian school came up. My fear crippled me into depression and a hard heart. Change was a constant in my life and I never accepted it with open arms. Mid summer right before my Senior year the Lord really challenged me to trust Him and let go of my fears. I didn't realize that I had been in a deep depression all through my first 3 years of high school until that summer.I finally surrendered and immediately  had peace that I had never known before. My fight with God was over and although He won, I had victory.

Senior year was great, I had great friends, awesome teachers and Jesus was constant in my life. I was so impacted by one of my high school counselors during my high school years that I wanted to be one. After I graduated I went to summer camp as a leader and have been with the High school ministry ever since.
But it wasn't easy. And we are not promised an easy life. Life was hard but He allowed me to go through those trials that I could be an example to others. The Lord has given me a love for the high schoolers that I serve with. I would have never thought that I'd still be "in" high school, the place and time of life I hated the most. I'm amazed by these kids, their stories, their hearts, their hurts and pains. And every week He reveals to me just how much He loves them. I get to be apart of the work He is doing in their lives and the Lord is constantly transforming my heart. The more I learn about the trials these kids face, the more I want to show them Jesus. The more I'm reminded to pray for them and love them. And I am challenged to know Jesus more.

The only constant I had was Jesus. I never doubted that God loved me but rather the amount of love. My concept of love was tarnished growing up. I still struggle with the fact that He loves me in all that I am. Yet I am constantly reminded through His word, through my church family and through my mom. I can always rely on my God. He met me in my darkest moments in my hardest of times and in the fears that kept me chained.

I have so much to be thankful for, He saved me from myself, set me free and gave me peace. I am forever in love with my Savior who gave it all that I may know Him and be loved.

" So we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and whoever abides in love abides in God, and God abides in Him" 1 John 4:16



Abide in Him. Walk with Him. Trust and obey. Love Jesus and keep your eyes on Him.

-Mis