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Archive for January, 2008

Psalms 1:1-3

1 Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked,nor stands in the way of sinners,nor sits in the seat of scoffers; 2 but his delight is in the law of the Lord,and on his law he meditates day and night. 3 He is like a tree planted by streams of water that yields its fruit in its season,and its leaf does not wither.In all that he does, he prospers.

I have been thinking about seasons in our lives since the Ecc passage the other day. What is it that makes a season either fruitful or unfruitful, and can we even as humans determine this?

This morning I woke up and as I always do, I started thinking about all that I had to do today. Let me just tell you I could feel my leaves withering!

A friend of mine in Brazil had a dream about me once being a great oak tree, I had actually forgotten about his dream until yesterday another friend completely un-related to the first, made the comment that I was a beautiful fruit tree. Now, I have the hardest time with these kind of compliments….. one reason being that I get up in the morning feeling so thirsty and so hungry for God and His word to give me strength for the day. I look into the mirror of the word and I see Deanna to the best of my ability and she is not beautiful and her fruit may be rotting some times……..

I have a young oak tree in my front yard that never loses all its fall leaves until the spring comes and the new actually pushes off the old. So the whole Winter it doesn’t look dead, it looks like its dying! I would rather it look dead. When it snows, my tree doesn’t look like a beautiful, stately winter ice cone, it looks like someone spray painted it and used cheap paint at that! And to top it off we don’t rake leaves in the Fall, like most people, we rake in the Spring!

Anyway, I say that to say this, I may be a little like this tree. I may not ever completely lose the withered leaves till Jesus pushes them off with the new growth of Spring. I can try to knock them off but it will do no good….. I must wait for Him to decide the season is over and it is time for little buds to appear.

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1 Peter 1: 3-9

3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4 to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, 5 who by God’s power are being guarded through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.

6 In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, 7 so that the tested genuineness of your faith more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ. 8 Though you have not seen him, you love him. Though you do not now see him, you believe in him and rejoice with joy that is inexpressible and filled with glory, 9 obtaining the outcome of your faith, the salvation of your souls.

Wow! What a passage. I am inspired by a comment a friend just made to me about nothing being wasted in our lives. So many times I have thought that there cannot be any good that can come out of a specific situation in my life and yet even if nothing but my faith in Christ was being built up, it would still be worth it.

But so much more can come out of it. Such as the building up of the body.

What does it take for others to be encouraged? For us to be real. For us to say, this has been and is my life and as I was reminded last night, God gives us the strength to get up in the morning and start another day.

 He does not promise an easy road as so many false teachers proclaim but He does promise He’ll be there. He does promise He will make all things work together for our good.

 Right now I am having to cling to this promise like many times before in my life. I may not see it till I am at His throne and kissing His precious nail scarred feet. But I know He is reliable, He never breaks His promises. And none of my grief will be wasted.

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Just A Season

Ecc 3:1-8,11a

1 For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven: 2 a time to be born, and a time to die;a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted; 3 a time to kill, and a time to heal;a time to break down, and a time to build up; 4 a time to weep, and a time to laugh;a time to mourn, and a time to dance; 5 a time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together;a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing; 6 a time to seek, and a time to lose;a time to keep, and a time to cast away; 7 a time to tear, and a time to sew;a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; 8 a time to love, and a time to hate;a time for war, and a time for peace.

11 He has made everything beautiful in its time.

I remember the first time I really heard these verses. I was at the funeral for the lady whom my parents named me for, Deanna Johnson. I remember seeing her husband and six children all up front on the stage and this passage being read. I was 14 years old, and in case you are wondering that was 17 years ago. I remember thinking that I wasn’t sure verse 11 was right. Seriously, I thought Solomon might have lost it there. I could see the different seasons, even in my few years, I had been through most of the above emotions at that time but I did not necessarily think they were beautiful.

Here I am 17 years later and still the question invades my mind, does He make all things beautiful in His time?

AH HA! Now I get it, not that it is easy, but it is in His time. the four letter word I hate so much, WAIT.

So, most people who read my blog know what season I am in right now. But you know it’s ok. It is only for a season and I will as Karen said so sweetly yesterday, “have my dancing shoes on, before I know it.”

Thank you Lord for Spring.

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Song By Karen Bailey.

My friend Karen wrote the following song. Shared it with me today after reading my post and I was so amazed by how it describes where I am, I asked her if I could share it with you.

Message in a Bottle
 
My heart stopped cold on that fateful day,
There were so many things I wanted to say,
But time was gone, It was too late,
 
Tears rolled down and stained my face,
Their silent whispers searched for a place,
They found themselves in God’s embrace,
Then He gently stored each tear away,
 
Jesus loves me this I know…
Doesn’t the Bible tell me so?
God’s got a bottle for my tears to hold,
I never hurt or cry alone,
This is the message in the bottle that holds my tears…
 
Our sins He forgets, He throws ‘em in the sea,
But the whispers of our tears He guards carefully,
Listening He records each tears history.
 
Tears tell their story day and night,
They wash away darkness and bring new light,
Our heartaches never escape God’s sight,
This is the message in the bottle that holds our tears…
 
It wasn’t on a sandy beach I found,
That this bottle and its message were handed down
From the God who fills our days with hope,
No matter how dark the night may be,
God is always watching over you and me,
We never cry alone, No, We cry never alone,
 
This is the message in the bottle that holds our tears,
There is a message in the bottle that holds our tears.

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Tears

Psalms 69:3

I am weary with my crying out; my throat is parched. My eyes grow dim with waiting for my God.

How is it that a scripture written so many years ago can describe exactly how I feel today?

I am so tired of crying myself to sleep and yet night after night, I go to bed, read the word, put it down and the tears start flowing. I have been told that tears are a good thing but when I fall apart in front of a group of people and cannot get control or when I have to turn my pillow over to the other side because it is soaked with my tears, I start to wonder.

Yesterday was a particularly hard day. I am sure 85% of it was that I was exhausted, but I don’t know. The message yesterday brought up some old memories that are still painful and then just the grief of a lost relationship still haunts me everywhere I turn.

Last night I thought of this passage,

Psalms 38:11

My friends and companions stand aloof from my plague,and my nearest kin stand far off.

NIV says, ” My friends  and companions avoid me because of my wounds“.  Man do I feel like this….. In general there are few people who are comfortable with grief that is so raw. Most people want to be able to snap their fingers and you be completely over whatever is making them uncomfortable. I can’t do that this time. I have in the past dried up the tears and looked strong for those around me because I had such a desire to please people, but this time is different. It is different because I am allowing tears to fall. I am allowing people to choose avoidance or conversation. I will get through this, I am sure but I am convinced more than ever that it is going to take a while.

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Standing Still

2 Chronicles 20:17

You will not need to fight in this battle, Stand firm,hold your position and see the salvation of the Lord on your behalf.

This morning I woke up feeling like I had been on a great journey and I was tired. Maybe it is because my dreams took me so many crazy places last night, or that the week has been so long and tiring, however I still feel like there is so much that needs to be done before such a long day tomorrow.

I was talking to the Lord about the battle that has been raging in my heart and mind for the past few weeks after certain events took place. I asked Him what he wanted me to do in a situation that I will be facing this time tomorrow morning, on account of this, He answered so clearly the above verse to me.

 “Deanna, You will not need to fight in this battle, just hold fast your position and I will do battle for you.”

Such sweet words to my female heart. You see, I get tired of fighting and I need a “hero” to step up and take the battle. I might not always admit this, but it is true nonetheless. 🙂

However, what greater Hero is there than my God? Again I think of Psalms 27, there is nothing to fear with Him by my side. I can take on whatever today and tomorrow holds because I have my Knight in shining armour right beside me….. You know the great thing about Him? He takes time to be EVERYTHING to me………

May I remember this……..

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1 John 3:10

By this it is evident who are the children of God, and who are the children of the devil: whoever does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor is the one who does not love his brother

I wonder sometimes if is is evident in us that we are the children of God or do we just blend in with the rest of the world?

What makes us different? Can we be characterized by our love for others as John says we will be? What about our honesty? What about our speech? What about our attitudes? Makes you think ,huh?

Recently, through a series of unplanned events, I had a interesting thing happen. I came in contact with someone, (really for the most part at first, second hand, ) that exemplified Christ in all the ways I mentioned above. Under very trying and frustrating circumstances, they never lost their witness. I did not know much about this person, but after observing the issues that were happening day after day, I came to a pretty clear conviction this person was a believer. After one particular trying day, I felt prompted to send an email of encouragement, where I took a huge step of faith and told them that I believed that they had done all they could do to bring God glory during these trying times. I was unsure how they would respond but knew I had done the right thing.

To my pleasant surprise they quickly responded with gratitude and after a short while I found out they happened to be in ministry in a deep south area. I was reminded of this passage above and it has come to mind several times over the last few weeks that I have had the pleasure of getting to know this fellow believer.

Today, it came to my mind and I was challenged by it. Do others know that I am a child of God? I certainly want this to be my testimony. May the ones who not just come into contact with me one time, but those closest to me, know by my actions not just my words!

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