Often times, we are rushed by life – obligations, expectations, and anything else we can imagine. In such time, we make quick decisions and execute actions almost by rote memory. And once the dust has settled, we realize that what we have is not really what we wanted but we had to do something. We figure that something is better than nothing until we realize that what we exactly have is nothing!

This nothing is not that we can’t see something but it is not the fullness of our desire. There are times that this must suffice and you realize the blessedness of having something, being grateful. And there are other times, that our works just weren’t coupled with faith resulting in nothingness. Only through relationship and practice can we manifest greater works unto righteousness and our own satisfaction. But note there is not a quick fix or action to seeing ourselves in another space. There is only a path…

The path that God sets for you is a race where you are your own competitor. God is the cheerleader, the coach, and the path-maker. The smartest action/step to be taken is found in Proverbs 9:10 (KJV), ‘The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the holy is understanding.” One step at a time in the right direction moves us along the path of making. The choice to live in the awareness that God is great and worthy of praise and honor; honoring his being and deity is where wisdom is found. Reading the word of God and engaging in conversations with those who believe and live for Jesus helps us to do this. God shares with those who value Him. Then comes knowledge of Him that brings us into understanding, not only of Him but of ourselves.

Regular honor with continual understanding helps to build our lives and realize destiny. Be encouraged to take one step at a time. Refusing the pressure and obligation, derive your peace from your most important relationship which is with the Lord. He guides, secures and ensures your success. We have already won the race because He has secured our victory. Let’s learn to live it out by taking one step at a time.

 

A series of moments, events and encounters creates this lovely web of life. The tragedies makes the triumphs more sweet than if the triumphs happened alone. The infrequency of both keeps us on our toes. Even the expectation for the shift into another encounter can either motivate you or thwart your drive. And despite what comes the experience of expectation is enough to cause our hearts to beat faster.

I am challenged to relish, derive the value of every part of my life’s series. Like a TV show with many episodes, I may replay or ponder its impact on me so will I do so in life. Whether it made me cry or shout, there’s value even in it that can make me better in some way. This value that I cherish can keep life from becoming debased and void. I must maintain what I know and act in faith that there is more to have and hold so I won’t stop moving or being. I smile thinking of how much I cried over the last 30 days or so and now I am enjoying my laughter and smile again. Who says that I can’t be both suffering and happy at the same time?! Apostle Paul said that he knew how to be in any circumstances he found himself in because he drew his strength and vigor from Christ himself. (Philippians 4:12-13) I think I’ll just follow his lead…

Adieu and God bless, Ceci

How do you handle the death of a loved one? My dad died and after the anger, the hurt and the pain. I sit here wondering what is the next thing to do? There is no navigation software or how to guide for handling this yet I somehow feel adrift on some floating device. I know there are grief books and such but they are fluff when you are in the midst of turmoil.

Part of me seems numb and the other seems lethargic…slow to respond yet sure of what I don’t want to be bothered with or bothered with whom! People are genuine enough but after using the God-given supports I need, I don’t want any of it. Essentially, I don’t want anything. I want to be where I was before the loss, before the news. That pre-loss state that was free of this heavy heart pain and family conflicts.

I know that my experience may not be a common place for those suffering loss but this is mine. This after loss stuff SUCKS! I didn’t like the in-loss place (after finding out one passed and during funeral preparation) and I certainly am not liking this. The only difference is that my headaches have lessened yet my heartache is holding steady. This feels like surgery and I just endured my first surgery in October of the past year. Not even three months later, I am having another!

This surgery is of the worst kind! My father has been excised from my physical space and I can feel the emptiness of where he once resided. The only one who can bring me any healing and help me to recover, bring me into wholeness, is my heavenly father.  My only guide is God’s presence and my relationship with Him. So I depend on God to show me the depth of his love for me to grant to  me a deeper understanding of Him since my depth of need has increased.

I found out in my Dad’s death that there were parts of himself that he didn’t allow me to know. For whatever reason, he preferred that it be uncovered in his death. In coming to see him through others’ eyes, it has put all that I know into question requiring the strength of my faith to believe that which I experienced. And through this dynamic, I am discovering more about God and experiencing more in Him. So this unique kind of surgery is refreshing my view of God in the beauty of His majesty. My new reality with my Dad’s passing is embracing with greater veracity who God is to me and for me. It’s the lesson that keeps on giving and the truth that is sustaining me. As my Dad was a person of diligence so may I be even the more. #lossoflovedone #deepcallingtodeep

Have you ever done all you can do and it still not be enough?! You’re flexible, not too demanding, forgiving, considerate, direct, and supportive…yet you still can’t seem to get to the end you desire? I mean when you hit the wall in this frustration sometimes the most fitting release from the brewing anger is screaming! Some would say that this is not the proper “Christian” response…WHATEVER! If God can’t handle my need to shout, then he and everyone else is just going to be uncomfortable. Though I don’t believe that the issue would be his, it is ours.

We have a tendency to want everything nice and tidy and when it is not, it lends to frustration. I want my life nice and tidy, free of hiccups and disturbances that are beyond my control or perceived control. What I usually fail to realize is that control to God is not the same as what it is to me. Control to me is no disturbance seeing that chaos is an indicator that I lack control or direction. Control to God includes disturbances and chaos because he uses them as purposeful and directive. He knows everything and sees it all, so at any point he can intervene so whatever it is, is still within his reach.This differing point of view is supported by scripture, Isaiah 59:1 as well as the following…

“Isaiah 55:8-9 (KJV), For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are my ways your ways, saith the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher that your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.”

That word “higher” in the original text is defined as to soar, lofty, haughty; it is indicative of the intention of God’s purpose. His thoughts are meant to cause us to soar, to rise above, to express the height and greatness of him. In our finite minds, this means little but when lived out yet it takes us higher and beyond our thinking or perspective. My frustration attempts to trap me in my right now and the circumstances but the intention in which God allows it is not locked up in the right now. He is attempting to take me higher than the circumstance, if I allow. He is pushing me to rise above my perspective and accept his perspective.

Essentially, the frustration is purposeful and instructive. Instructing me in handling the affairs of this life. Will I trust God or won’t I? Do I believe and expect the promises of God to be manifested for me? Am I going to be more than a hearer of God’s word and become a doer? Is God really true? Can I really tell him everything and he still love me and receive me as his own? The circumstances create pressure and discomfort that works against believing. So what will I hold on to?

Being that frustration is purposeful, does he allow this out of love and his plan for my life? What is his motive and will I wait on him? Am I really the apple of his eye? (Psalm 17:8) It demands of us to either live by faith or walk by sight (Romans 1:17). Where no one likes to be frustrated, it seems that when those moments arrive we should let it have its perfect work (James 1:4) that we may be whole in every way. Job cried out to the Lord when he had enough and God answered, I believe that when we say what we really mean so God will answer us as well.

With a lightened heart, Ceci

 

Today is one of those days when I realized that God is not going to let me off the hook! Hopefully, this will make sense to you. It begins with a small whisper from God about an idea, vision or portion of His plan for your life. Being hesitant, you acknowledge his voice yet you make no deliberate action towards the “thing”. So life proceeds on and there are preached sermons and quantifying situations where you KNOW that God is reinforcing that which you do not bring up in conversation. He can bring it up but you won’t!!!

At times, you can see that he is not letting up on this “thing” and you begin to relax to his plan and perspective. Just when you think you’ve found a safe space with God and at least, you’re not avoiding the “thing”; God drops a whammy! Holy Spirit, Jesus, and even the angels are in attendance when God pulls the rug from under you. This experience can be misread as tumultuous and hard yet God’s perspective is “time to go”! Me, I try to feign ignorance when I can’t wrap my head around it with confidence. Whether my confidence lacks due to my fear or lack of understanding, I am hesitant for a reason. Hesitancy convinces us that we’re buying time to adjust but for some of us, we’re just playing with fire essentially wasting time being unproductive.

Today, he pulled the rug and I couldn’t be upset because it slowly dawn on me after the initial pain, that God allowed it and I needed to accept his will for me. So I am in between a rock and a hard place because I refuse to go back. In front of me the way is unclear yet its bright enough for me to take a step in his direction. I describe it as walking the plank or toward the edge of a cliff and looking up to find that the path before me has shortened significantly and there is no room for retreat! These are the times that the word of God comes into action…”I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us.” Philippians 3:14 NLT

Life is full of twists and turns, we tend to think that the best way to handle it is to buckle down and build resistance to it. This mode of thinking causes us to build plans in sand to avoid the wipe-out of the tide. The enemy deludes us with deceptive tactics to push us into thinking that by our own strength and depending on our actions, we can stop the turbulence of our life’s journey. Turbulence (the twists and turns) is to be endured.  The Bible is full of answers to enduring them. Why? Why would God give advice on enduring them instead of eradicating them?

Proverbs 13:11 (AMP) says, “Wealth obtained by fraud dwindles, But he who gathers gradually by [honest] labor will increase [his riches].” Turbulence helps us to avoid building homes in vain by slowing us down and causing us to consider our way. Vanity is fraud, it is built on my perspective and ‘I think‘ mission statements. As believers, our lives are not our own. If this is hard to receive, I would suggest a restart of salvation because this is the truth. We have submitted our lives to Christ and He is our Lord. Our Lord directs our way in this life and we learn to trust Him. We trust Him, He leads us.

Our life’s journey of twists and turns may become uncomfortable, if so, let’s refresh our choice and turn to Christ, submit to His Lordship. How? We acknowledge our need for Him, wait for His insight and trust the process. We know that whether He is speaking or silent, He’s still with ud. And as long as He’s on the boat (Matthew 8:23-27 AMP), the storm can’t win. And if you’re really trusting, you’ll begin speaking to the storm yourself…Life and death are in your tongue (Proverbs 18:21 AMP), you can have what you say! See trusting in the Father produces fruit that reflects the knowledge of Him in whom you trust. So when you speak, your words carry His voice. Psalm 103:20 (AMP) says that angels hearken to His voice so action begins when you speak what He is speaking.

Let’s really get to living and stop building our own houses. Jesus has already gone ahead of us to prepare our places for us (John 14:2 AMP); our part is to focus on learning to occupy it. Our faith is developed through turbulence and our triumphs through Christ will be like the sun breaking through the clouds after the storm.