The Wilderness

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IMG_190131 Days Walking Through Chronic Illness

day twenty

And as Aaron spoke to the whole community of Israel, they looked out toward the wilderness. There they could see the awesome glory of the Lord in the cloud.

Exodus 16:10 NLT

I was a born a shy little thing. Quiet, a reputation for not being much trouble at all.

As I grew, was thrust into public, around people, attending school; I was content in very much being the wall flower. The one fading in to the background, never sure of myself, or the worth of what I had to say.

Old before my time. The responsible one. Making the grades.

Hanging back from the crowd.

Much to my Sweet Mama’s disappointment, I was never interested in being a cheerleader. In fact, I wasn’t interested in anything involving raising my voice much above a whisper.

The one you strained to hear; the…

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Capable.

What makes us so embarrassed about the gospel? What makes us fearful in talking to our roommate who doesn’t know Jesus? Ourselves. Myself. This morning, I’m sitting here and realizing once again, that I can be embarrassed by the gospel. I can be embarrassed by my poor thoughts. Sometimes, selfishness comes in the worst but littlest ways. People that we know assume that Christianity offers many different things, some are not even what it actually is. We make things too complicated. In not having Christ, we have nothing. In him, we have everything. The cross is enough. Jesus is all there is to offer because he is all that we need. I write that, without much life experience, but I think when we know Jesus, he still proves this- no matter what or how small a situation or how long our lifespan has been. The cross is enough. One day, if we know Jesus, we will be like him. But, until then, we need to pursue Christlikeness. In Him, we are complete. In Him, we have complete victory. Jesus paid it all. When we let fear get in the way, we lose the pursuit of Christlikeness for selfness. Worldliness. I know that Jesus is all I need because he’s proven that, but knowing is different from believing and desiring. His righteousness, we will never fully understand. His grace, is upon other graces, and upon other graces. We have a God who does great things. We have a God who can cast out fear, regardless of who we want to believe that we are at a certain time or if we’re too lazy to get out of bed. God doesn’t have to give us another morning to wake up and breathe. He doesn’t have to give me another chance with Megan and to overcome some kind of crazy fear. But, because God is like no one else, he’s going to do great things today. He’s capable of restoring relationships/friendships/roommates.

Great things, greater God.

“Your righteousness, God, reaches to the heavens, you who have done great things. Who is like you, God? Though you have made me see troubles, many and bitter, you will restore my life again; from the depths of the earth you will again bring me up.” Psalm‬ ‭71:19-20‬

Count as loss

“But whatever gain I had, I counted as loss for the sake of knowing Christ. Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as trash, in order that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God that depends on faith…” Philippians 3:7-9. What makes us so embarrassed about the gospel? This morning, I’m sitting here and realizing that I can be embarrassed by the gospel. I could write a list of many things/situations in which I have not believed that God is enough. People that we know assume that Christianity offers many different things, some are not even what it actually is. We make things too complicated. In not having Christ, we have nothing. In him, we have everything. Jesus is all there is to offer because he is all that we need. I write that, without much life experience, but I think when we know Jesus, he still proves this- no matter what or how small a situation or our lifespan has been. One day, if we know Jesus, we will be like him. But, until then, we need to pursue Christlikeness. In Him, we are complete. In Him, we have complete victory. Jesus paid it all. Have a great day!

Christ-exalting

“Yes, and I will rejoice, for I know that through your prayers and the help of the Spirit of Jesus Christ this will turn out for my deliverance, as it is my eager expectation and hope that I will not be at all ashamed, but that with full courage now as always Christ will be honored in my body, whether in life or by death. For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain.” Philippians 1:18-21. I read a prayer from Francis Chan this morning that says, “Lord, fill my mouth today with Christ-exalting wisdom, and Christ-exalting encouragement. And grant that I would experience Christ-exalting joy, and that I would be willing to make Christ-exalting sacrifices, and serve those around me with Christ-exalting helpfulness.” Wow. It’s not about me today. Francis Chan basically puts Christ-exalting together in that way because it combines two words into one adjective. Praying to exalt Christ and to be Christ-exalting will help us to pursue and enjoy the highest purpose of our existence, which really is exalting Christ in what we think, feel, and do. This is passion. This is what God calls us to. There’s no part of our lives that God isn’t a part of… Crap. Christ-exalting teeth brushing? Yeah, Christ-exalting teeth brushing. Nothing too small can’t be used to glorify God and too often I know that I make Christ a foreigner to things like that sometimes. John Piper also puts it like this, “Making much of Christ is not one action alongside others. It’s the aim of everything we do.” Everything.

Every Person Has A Story

wateringcanblog

Tell yours.

I know there are those that truly don’t care–they judge you by what they see.

But there are others who need to hear it and will be blessed if you do.

We can all be guilty of being self-focused, talking only about ourselves, but there is also the danger of living a facade–not letting other see who you really are.

I’ve never been good at “faking it”.  It’s difficult for me to paste a smile on my face when I’m upset or down.  When I don’t feel well I want to curl up in my covers and hibernate–it’s too much work to push forward and try to pretend I’m okay.  I’ve learned what my limits are, and I choose to be real rather than adopt the “suck it up and go” mentality.

What that means is, while I still function, I will try to not let my circumstances steal my…

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Rooted in righteousness

“No one is established by wickedness, but the root of the righteous will never be moved.” Proverbs 12:3. This one got me this morning for some reason. I think so often we try to hold onto things, thoughts, feelings, and those things that we try to hold onto, attempt to become our foundation for other things. Sometimes, God calls us to let go. Sometimes, He desires for us to wait and hold out for His timing. Sometimes, He wants something for us that we don’t even realize at a certain time. He wants what is good and what will not harm us, for US, but to be able to glorify Himself. Crazy love. But, I guess the thing I’m trying to say here, is that some “things” we hang onto are wicked. They’re not good for us. God is gentle and He is willing to give us grace in letting those things that aren’t good, go. But, that doesn’t and shouldn’t make it easier. Gentleness and grace from God just makes it so much better. Rooting ourselves in righteousness, is basically just rooting ourselves in the unfailing love of God. Grace. God never moves. He never will. We can hold fast to that truth and that promise. Sometimes, I think we can tell ourselves that we have the right to feel a certain way. Maybe, in some cases, that is true. We choose how to look at situations in our lives. But, the point is that we can acknowledge that God is the one who chose us. He chose us for righteousness, because of Himself. Grace. Crazy. Have a great day!