Burning Hearts

Many years ago, my uncle asked me: “How do you know when God is calling you?” At that time, I wasn’t quite sure how to respond, so I paused a moment before I answered: “You hear him”. My uncle was not a believer, but I found out afterwards that he was literally hearing a voice calling his name. Somehow, he knew deep down that it was Jesus.

In Luke 24, we see two disciples on the road to Emmaus. These men had hoped that Jesus would be the one to redeem Israel… and then he was crucified. The resurrected Jesus joined them, although they didn’t realize it was him. It wasn’t until later that day as he reclined at the table with them that their eyes were opened. Then they said to each other:

Weren’t our hearts burning within us while he was talking with us on the road and explaining the Scriptures to us? Luke 24:32

Even though they didn’t know that it was Christ walking with them and talking with them; their hearts were burning just hearing him speak! Jesus was only waiting for the right moment to reveal himself to them.

It was as he reclined at the table with them that he took the bread, blessed and broke it, and gave it to them. 31 Then their eyes were opened, and they recognized him, but he disappeared from their sight. Luke 24:30-31

I imagine that it was like that with my uncle… and with me before I made the decision to accept Christ as my personal Lord and Savior. I was just walking along, discouraged, not realizing that Jesus was walking with me- waiting for the perfect moment to reveal himself. The moment when the symbolic “breaking of the bread” would open my eyes to his sacrifice on the cross for my sins. Before that moment, the truth of the Gospel was hidden from me, no matter how many times I may have heard it (& I am a PK, so I’ve heard it plenty) or how my heart burned. It was only when I believed in his sacrifice, that the veil over my heart was lifted, and I could finally see the resurrected Christ.

If my uncle were to ask me again: How do you know when God is calling you? I don’t think my answer would differ by much. I might add, “you hear him & your heart burns within you”. Yup, that’s Jesus.

 

 

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We Do Not Set Aside The Grace of God

I have been crucified with Christ, and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. -Galatians 2:20

When we have faith in Jesus- God’s GRACE (his free and unmerited favor) gives us the ability… the strength to live righteously. Paul describes our bodies in his letter to the Roman church as “bodies of death” completely incapable of walking by the Spirit on its own. Our very flesh betrays us leading us time and again to “kick against the goads”. However, when we deny ourselves, take up our cross, and follow Jesus- we are crucified with him and no longer live according to the desires of our flesh, but by grace through faith in Christ. I know this, yet more often than not, I feel like Paul:

I do not understand what I am doing, because I do not practice what I want to do, but I do what I hate. -Romans 7:15

How many times have I asked myself: “why did I do that?” Followed by a resolute, “Never again!” Yet, if I am not careful, it will happen again. Jesus warned his disciples to “watch and pray”, so that they do not fall into temptation. We must pray, because although our spirit is willing- our flesh is weak.  Thankfully, GOD’S GRACE IS SUFFICIENT! We are undeserving, yet he continually bestows his favor (act of kindness beyond what is due or usual) on us, when we pray, and his strength is perfected in our weakness.

Therefore let us approach the throne of grace with boldness, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us at the proper time. -Hebrews 4:16

We obtain this grace to help us be more like Christ, even whilst we are still in these dying bodies waiting to be transformed. Because of his sacrifice and our faith therein- we are able to practice what we want to do (righteousness) and not what we hate (sin). We do not set aside the grace of God, but we cling to it for dear life knowing that his grace=our righteousness.

Just Pray

I shared this on Facebook and decided to share it on here as well. I have talked before about how prayer as a solution is being rejected by the world and how sadly, many churches are adopting this mentality. For these people, Prayer Is Not Enough! However, I will say it until my dying breath… Yes it is! Yes HE is!

My status reads as follows:

I am really sad about the recent suicides that have made headlines over the past week. People who appeared to have it all ending their lives. Mental illness runs in my family, so this cause is especially near and dear to my heart.

I am heartbroken by the way the Church has responded in light of these events. I don’t know when prayer became about being “politically correct”. When did it become taboo to tell someone suffering from mental illness to pray? I don’t know if I’m just naive, but I still believe that there is nothing impossible for God! Yes, I understand that mental illness is like being diabetic or having another physical ailment, and that you’re going to need some kind of treatment. I myself have been in therapy. Sometimes you’re going to need that and/or sometimes you’re going to need medication, but at ALL TIMES you’re going to need prayer. I don’t know why it’s not okay for the Church to say that anymore.

The Bible says: “is anyone among you sick? Let them call the elders of the church to pray over them and anoint them with oil in the name of the Lord. And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise them up.” I believe that God still heals! And he doesn’t just heal physical illnesses… he can heal your mental illness too! Yes, we should connect them to the appropriate resources, but let’s not belittle the power of prayer when doing so. Yes, we have fellow believers also struggling, but when I say, pray… I’m not saying “just pray” like it’s an easy way out… I’m saying PRAY because it’s the ONLY way out. Pray like your life depends on it… because it does! It will not be easy, but your life is worth it! It’s worth waging war for on our knees!

One final yes, for those who don’t know Christ… I do believe knowing him will make all the difference!!!!! In his presence there is fullness of joy! Peace that surpasses all understanding! Hope like an anchor of the soul! New mercies every morning! Love that covers a multitude of sins! And so much more!!!!

Thanks for reading & don’t forget to pray! 🙏🏻

Bloggers Support Bloggers Award

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Thank you, Gail, for nominating me for the Bloggers Support Bloggers Award! I am relatively new to all of this and so appreciate you thinking of me! I find it so encouraging to read your blog. I especially love your poetry! Your love for God is evident in everything that you share!   


The Rules:

  1. Thank the one who has tagged you for this challenge and link their blogsite.
  2. Add the official photo in your page.
  3. List at least 5 bloggers you like. (Suggestion: You can list up 3 bloggers that you’ve known for a long time and you can also list up 2 newbies or more. It’s up to you though!)
  4. In 5 sentences or above, give a short description about why you love the blogger.
  5. Tag at least 3 bloggers to do the challenge.
  6. Put #bloggerssupportbloggers in the Tags section so whenever a blogger is looking for new blogs to read, it will be easier to find!

Blogs I Like:

I love the following blogs because of their transparency. They recognize that we’re all on this journey of faith together and there are no pretenses to what they share. They “keep it real”. The world needs to hear about God from more people like them. People who aren’t all about appearances, but who speak from the heart. 

Inside Cup

Beauty Beyond Bones

Elihu’s Corner

Matthew Winters (Comeback Pastor)

Seeking Divine Perspective


The Nominees:

Dreaming of Guatemala

Nocturnal Mom Talks

Valerie Cullers

God bless! ❤

Against Your Fears

Today, I am home from work with a sick toddler. While she rests, I thought it would be a good idea to “catch up” with my BLOG. I had started the year with a a review of Priscilla’s Shirer’s book Fervent and loved it so much that I decided to continue my review weekly- chapter by chapter. I had made it all the way to chapter five, but then life happened and well, now it’s May. ☹️ Nevertheless, I am determined to finish the other half of this book, just don’t be surprised if the date reads February. 🙂 Just Kidding. 😜

If he [Satan] is working that hard to keep me from moving forward, there must be some blessing or beauty from Heaven he’s trying to divert me from. And I’m not having it, not anymore, not from him. 

So, I started a Teen Mom Support Group at my church. Due to the nature of my job, I felt led by the Lord that this is what the youth in our community need right now. My hope was to grow this Support Group to encompass Teens with Depression, Teens in Foster Care… basically, teens who have nowhere else to go. Because these teens will eventually turn to drugs and alcohol (if they haven’t already). That’s how their parents have coped and they know nothing else. I was able to promote this support group at my job and we even had someone sign up after being referred by our County’s Health Department. I know it’s only one person, but it’s a start.

I asked my mom to be the group’s facilitator since she was a teen mom herself and she has worked with troubled youth for years. She was on board, of course, but when she received the first email from the Health Department’s Healthy Moms, Healthy Babies program, she was terrified. A lot of her excuses sounded like the ones Priscilla mentions in this chapter: “I’m not ready”, “I’m not educated enough”, “I’m not capable'”.

Fear is the antithesis of faith.

Priscilla reminds us in this chapter that God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power, love, and a sound mind. Fear comes directly from Satan to hinder us from moving forward in what God has called us to do. If the Israelite’s had wallowed in fear- they would have never crossed the Red Sea or made it to the Promised Land. In the same way, we will never make it to our destiny if we allow fear to paralyze us.

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Some of our reactions our natural- sweaty palms, racing heart, etc., but if we allow the enemy to intensify these reactions- we will miss out on experiencing the beauty of God’s promises being fulfilled in our life.

So, mom, if you’re reading this- Do not be afraid. This is what you’ve been praying for. God is making a way for you into the lives of these teens, so that you can help them.

Heavenly Father,

I praise you because you are FEARLESS! ❤

I praise you because you are the “Way-Maker, Miracle Worker, Promise Keeper, and Light in the Darkness!”

I ask you to help us not be paralyzed by fear, but to give us the discernment to know where you are asking us to go and what you’re asking us to do!

I ask you to please help us not be afraid to walk worth of the calling we’ve received & to have faith that you are preparing us to do your good work!

I ask you to forgive us for the times we have been afraid and missed out on experiencing your glory!

Yes! Because you have not given us a spirit of fear!

Yes! Because you know what you’re doing!

Yes! Because you are greater than ALL!

In Jesus Name,

AMEN!

P.S. I am currently obsessed with this song!