Sunday, December 30, 2012

Resolutions part 2

For this next year, I have started to pray for a year of growth. Alot of changes are at hand. Cyrus and I might have a building opportunity for the business which means alot of planning and time put into it. Like I said before, there are also some things that might happen at work which will determine what my role in that will be. Obama, as we all know, was re-elected (yes I know old news) which comes with TONS of unknown changes that really might affect us for the worse. BUT MY GOD IS IN CONTROL. HIS GRACE AND SOVEREIGNTY WILL OUT SMART ANY CHANGE THAT IS AT HAND OR AS MY PASTOR SAYS, "I KNOW WHAT HAPPENS! I HAVE READ THE END OF THE BOOK". So my new resolution for growth this year will  be listening to the small and quiet voice within me wanting me to do things that are unpleasant or make me get out of my comfort zone. Yes thats broad but let me explain.
 Changes! Changes! Changes! Changes! They are scary and unsettling especially the ones that are not in our personal lives like the government and taxes and fees and blah blah blah...but the reality is, it has to happen sooner or later. History has proven that to us. I got Cyrus Agenda 21 by Glenn Beck ( for Christmas on CD. is some deep stuff but to be honest, as a Christian I struggle with Glenn Beck. I think alot of the things he says are probably right about our government but I also dont like how he presents it. He is a mormon as we know and he brings up God and faith and truth all the time. I dont like it. If Glenn Beck truly believed in God, He would put his faith and hope into Him not trying fight against this or dislike that about Obama and the government. But like I said I think he has some good points politically and I think we need to be aware of those things and be prepared spiritually not the way he says to. I hope that makes sense. But this book really has got me thinking what AM I DOING SPIRITUALLY TO PREPARE MYSELF AND OTHERS FOR THE HARD TIMES THAT ARE TO COME? My first thought that I have been mauling over is how much scripture do I know if they took my Bible away from me. What would I have to offer to share with others in time of hopelessness and no peace? But then I had another thought WHERE IS MY/OUR URGENCY TO TELL OTHERS ABOUT CHRIST NOW? Paul was obsessed about telling others about the Gospel. He lived and breathed the Gospel. DO I live and breath the Gospel? I am around non Christians kids and parents every day at the daycare. Do I share with them Jesus and what He did? No I dont.
 Another thing I have been mauling over is being motivated by the grace of God to do things that I dont like to do. I can give you many times the past week where I felt like I should have done something to go the extra mile in helping someone. But I did not do it. I really believe that this is something that I need to do in order to die to myself and live completely for God. As you can tell, I have put some thought in to this but I believe these thoughts are still in their beginning stages. I need to pray over this more. But I really believe this is what God wants me to have for a resolution.     

Resolutions part one

It has been AMAZING to see how God has worked in my life this past year. At the beginning of the year, I made a resolution to be more content in where God has me right now in this part of my life ( He has made be more content (not perfect at it though : ) ) in 5 areas, starting at 5 and counting down, this past year that I will share with you.

5) My Job
At the beginning of this year, my schedule was switched from morning shift to the afternoon/closing shift. It was nice to get more sleep and be less zombie like all the time. I also got to experience being a teacher for 5 one year olds. From that experience, I have come to enjoy that age. They are no longer little babies but they are not in the terrible twos yet. The "perfect" age. I also have been able to build a accountability with some of the other ladies about not gossiping with each other about how things are run or things that we simply just don't like. For this next year, some things are changing and I am going to have to learn what my role in that is going to be and probably will grow more in that.

4) Living here in Pa
I was not overly happy about being here in Pa. Just another place to get use to. Also, I had to get to know my in laws who are very different from my own family. God made me see the importance of their relationship and convicted me of spending more time with them. WOW what a blessing He has given to me. He has made me content in my relationship with my in laws who I now appreciate alot and know they care for me and sometimes they spoil me : ) But now there is my grandparents in law I need to get to know more.

3) The evil "M" word (Money) : )
I have always been a penny pincher. I hardly spend extra money for myself unless it is a coffee drink at Dunkin Donuts or better yet Starbucks : ) But living paycheck to paycheck and owning your own business is sometimes unsettling. But God has really reminded me of where my money, hours at work, or people who come to the trailer come from. They come from Him. It is all in His hands. Like it says in that O so familiar passage of Matthew 6, if he takes care of the birds by having them travel south for the winter or the beautiful flowers that currently live underground in my mother-in-laws garden ready whenever it is spring to come back up, then He will take care of me. NOW DONT GET ME WRONG HERE. I AM NO WHERE PERFECT WITH MONEY but I do know that He will provide even when it is rough or when I doubt Him. Even now with possible changes in the business or my medical bill from my colonoscopy that seems to haunt me, I have to keep leaning on the promises He will take care of us.

2) Babies
This one is very close to number 1 because I struggle off and on randomly so much with this one and where God has taken me with it is AMAZING. He has shown to me that He is the one who is faithful and very much in control with when I will be able to have a baby. For pete's sake, I could get pregnant right now on birth control. That is how in control He is. One verse I have claimed as my own alot is in 2 Samuel 22:31   
As for God, His way is perfect;
The word of the Lord is proven;
He is a shield to all who trust in Him.
Another thing I hold onto is the story when I was born. My mom tells me this all the time. My mom and dad got married when they were 18 and 19 but had me when they were almost 24 and 25. Mom tells me all the time that if she had me when she was younger that I would be entirely different child. What is even cooler is that 2 years later my parents became Christians. God is faithful and all knowing and knows the perfect time to have kids. I cannot say it enough. He is faithful and He has made me very content in that. Also, when I think about other people having kids when they were only married for 2 years or even in their first year of marriage, I am thankful. They cant say that they worked in a group home and took care of tons of teenagers. They cant say they saw 8 capitols. They cant say they have 32 amazing gnomes and 2 particularly amazing gnomes like Fred and Travel. God has given that to me at this time of my life as much as He has given those couples babies at their times of their lives. He knows best. 

1) His Grace
When I just typed those words onto the computer screen, it left me speechless for a few moments. What God's Grace has shown to me is huge. I am reading a book currently called Transforming Grace by Jerry Bridges ( God has used this book to help me see how His grace works in us. Bridges uses Paul as an example alot throughout the book. The whole idea that Paul use to kill Christians and be entirely opposed of the concept of Jesus Christ but then graciously was changed forever to tell gentiles about that same God is huge. But grace does not stop at salvation. It continues on in our lives through the Holy Spirit through the good and the bad. We cannot do anything apart from the grace of God. Bridges says even when we try to do good, there is some ounce of impurity in it. We NEED the grace of God in order to live the way we need to as Christians. I talked to my pastor a little more about grace and he said it was all our perception of God's grace in our lives. We can do NOTHING apart from the grace of God. We are not even in the equation when it comes to us doing things for God or even when we try to live the good Christian life. When I put my focus on myself trying to do good, I am going to fail and kick myself. He led me to Romans 8 where there is no condemnation in Christ. I then have lost the sight of His grace. My focus needs to be what Christ has done on the cross and what He is capable to do in me because of it. I am still learning as you can tell but oh what AMAZING GRACE.

Like I said before though, I am not perfect in these areas, but because I am learning that my God is instructing and teaching me in the way I should go and that I should not be like a stubborn mule or a horse with a bit and bridle fighting Him (Psalm 32: 8-9) but allow Him to lead me to His perfect way for me.  In that I am content.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Christmas thoughts and happenings

I cannot believe that it is already the 13th! This Christmas season has gone by so fast with some exciting things happening. First, my in-laws gave Cyrus and I $500 to go visit my family in California. We are going out there next month. I am excited! Living far away from my parents make me appreciate them alot. It is hard not being around them for the holidays and I think my in laws see that. But I came up with an idea. I decided to wanted to spend the holidays with my parents (mostly mom) by calling them on the phone everyday until Christmas. My goal was to share what God is showing us this Christmas season and shared it with each other and pray about it. I have tried to add fun things like singing Christmas carols or going to and visiting a place together. I hope to watch a movie with them over the phone but we will see. I want to write this all down and share online somewhere because I think there are alot of people who don't live near their families and want to connect with them.
I think it is amazing to see how I serve a God that never changes. I think as humans it is so easy to  make a big deal about Jesus on Christmas and Easter but loose sight of Him all other times of the year. This Christmas season I have reflected more about this entire year and how He continues on to show Himself even more. I serve a faithful God! I serve a God who knows my heart's desires. I serve a God who loves and protects me. I serve a God who gives strength, peace, and contentment. The coolest thing is He came down as a baby away from all His glory in heaven to be a human, to experience this horrible human body and show us the true example we need to live. He uses imperfect people to prepare the way for Him for many many many years (judah and tamar, rehab, ruth, david and bathsheba) and even to bring Himself into this world. Such perfect grace and holiness!
Cyrus also gets to take a break this season from the business and work another job. It will be nice to go to the winter festival with him and his family since he won't be working at all on Saturdays for awhile. I just continue to pray as God shows us what's next. But I am excited for Cyrus being done for the Christmas season.
Also I get to direct, with a co worker, the Christmas program at the daycare. The theme is the sweetest Christmas ever. Everything is around candy. There is even a big part of the program where candy gives us a reminder of all the parts of the Christmas story. It is exciting to see the little ones knowing their lines and singing their songs. It has been interesting to see how it came about but fun to plan with co workers and the kids.
The Christmas is not over yet and I can't wait to see how much more God continues to bless us.
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