Sunday, November 26, 2006

"I am 28 going on 29, I know that I'm naive..."

I'm not sure what to call this post. I'm still in the desert and it's not really getting any easier. But that's ok... I mean... I feel like I can use this time to strengthen my faith matter how often I feel like I'm just really alone. I'm not sure why my heart feels so heavy still but it has made me pray a lot for many people that I know are going through "real" hard times. I just heard a song on the radio that really touched my heart, and as I knelt down to pray I heard Psalm 40. I didn't really know this Psalm so I looked it up and it was so cool. Psalm 40
I waited patiently for the LORD; and he inclined unto me, and heard my cry. He brought me up also out of an horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my goings. And he hath put a new song in my mouth, even praise unto our God: many shall see it, and fear, and shall trust in the LORD. Blessed is that man that maketh the LORD his trust, and respecteth not the proud, nor such as turn aside to lies. Many, O LORD my God, are thy wonderful works which thou hast done, and thy thoughts which are to us-ward: they cannot be reckoned up in order unto thee: if I would declare and speak of them, they are more than can be numbered. Sacrifice and offering thou didst not desire; mine ears hast thou opened: burnt offering and sin offering hast thou not required. Then said I, Lo, I come: in the volume of the book it is written of me, I delight to do thy will, O my God: yea, thy law is within my heart. I have preached righteousness in the great congregation: lo, I have not refrained my lips, O LORD, thou knowest. I have not hid thy righteousness within my heart; I have declared thy faithfulness and thy salvation: I have not concealed thy lovingkindness and thy truth from the great congregation. Withhold not thou thy tender mercies from me, O LORD: let thy lovingkindness and thy truth continually preserve me. For innumerable evils have compassed me about: mine iniquities have taken hold upon me, so that I am not able to look up; they are more than the hairs of mine head: therefore my heart faileth me. Be pleased, O LORD, to deliver me: O LORD, make haste to help me. Let them be ashamed and confounded together that seek after my soul to destroy it; let them be driven backward and put to shame that wish me evil. Let them be desolate for a reward of their shame that say unto me, Aha, aha. Let all those that seek thee rejoice and be glad in thee: let such as love thy salvation say continually, The LORD be magnified. But I am poor and needy; yet the Lord thinketh upon me: thou art my help and my deliverer; make no tarrying, O my God.

Today is my last day as a 28 year old. I must say that I think it's the first time in some years that I'm actually looking forwards to the next year... 29 in this case. I know I'm getting older and older and what not... but I'm just so excited about God's plans and all that He would like to do in my life and in the lives of those around me. Getting older for me just means more years to walk with Him and the thought of that makes me very happy. I don't know what the Lord has in mind, but whatever it is I know it's going to be great in Him and I just hope that with the years how many they may be... that I will just grow more and more in Him and be wiser each time.... please Jimena!!!! The Lord is good and I do rejoice in Him. He has indeed "put a new song in my mouth" which has been a blessing to sing and play... it's amazing how it just lifts our spirit to just sing to God. I know He has heard my cry, I have had the opportunity to share His good deeds with others lately, and at the same time reminding myself of the great things He has done in my life. My heart is heavy because of my iniquities, but "behold, a woman in the city, which was a sinner, when she knew that Jesus sat at meat in the Pharisee's house, brought an alabaster box of ointment, And stood at his feet behind him weeping, and began to wash his feet with tears, and did wipe them with the hairs of her head, and kissed his feet, and anointed them with the ointment." And then the Pharisee who saw this thought, "Ha, if Jesus was a real prophet he would know what kind of a woman this is... for she is a sinner!" Remember? And then Jesus said :"There was a certain creditor which had two debtors: the one owed 500 pence, and the other 50. And when they had nothing to pay, he frankly forgave them both. Tell me therefore, which of them will love him most?" The Pharisee answered correctly by saying that he whom he forgave the 500. Then Jesus said :"Seest thou this woman? I entered into thine house, thou gavest me no water for my feet: but she hath washed my feet with tears, and wiped them with the hairs of her head. Thou gavest me no kiss: but this woman since the time I came in hath not ceased to kiss my feet. My head with oil thou didst not anoint: but this woman hath anointed my feet with ointment. Wherefore I say unto thee, Her sins, which are many, are forgiven; for she loved much: but to whom little is forgiven, the same loveth little."
So in a way I could say that because of my many iniquities I have the ability to love much, for much has been forgiven. Well... I don't know why I'm writing so much... I should go enjoy the last hours of 28-hood.

Ha... I just got a pre-B-day call from somebody that wanted to wish the Purple Princess a Happy B-day!!!! Cool... Thank you so much! =)It's the first pre-Birthday call I have ever gotten in my life! The Princess is happy!

God bless to anyone that made it all the way to the bottom of this post! God bless!

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Desert Lessons

Dear Friends,

We have finally made it... that's right. I write you from the burning desert where all you hear is the wind blowing, the lifting of sand, where the sky is clear and the sun just never seems to get tired of doing it's job and where there is absolutely nothing in view... at least not where I am. What am I doing here? Well, a lot of things so far, but mostly just learning to turn my heart to God, to quiet my soul and hear Him speak. I wasn't really planning on such a trip... when He suggested we go I said...

"Great! Let me get..."
"He's not coming."
"Oh, then let me tell..."
"She's not coming."
"Then... we surely must take..."
"Nothing...just come :)"
"0_o..... hmmm, I think I have to gooo"

What am I really saying? Just that the Lord loves us so much, He knows what we need and when we need it too. If our prayer is to be closer to Him... to have more of Him... but if we are already full of ourselves, then how can this happen? God takes prayer seriously, He takes us seriously and if we say "Oh Lord I want more of you in my life"... then He'll probably have to take something out of you, to put more of Him. No? In a way I think that what we sometimes mean by this is really, Lord bless me with more things that are good for me. Give me, give me, give me. This morning when I woke up, still a bit dizzy from the whole trip I said. "Lord, what do we do? Where do I go from here?" First off, the basics... love, forgive, give thanks, and something I seldom do, lay it all out before God and man if necesary. Why? because if I carry things around when I'm trying to focus on Him... I can't really, because I'll still feel the burden of my load... so that's got to go... "Ok cool...what next?" And here comes my first Desert Lesson.

1. When we pray, "More of You", that actually means, less of me... and that's how our prayer will be answered. Then when we say... "Lord, why do I feel so empty?" He will lovingly remind us that we do indeed seem to have a new hole, a new emptiness, but that He's here to fill it and He will...we just have to follow Him and trust that He is good and all good things come from Him.

I think I will learn a lot of things in the desert. God did many miracles right there... Jesus spent a lot of time there too. If I want to follow Him with all my heart I'll have to understand what the desert is, as it seems to be a very important place for God. I'm getting excited about this. I've managed to bring my Bible, my guitar, a pen... a study.... some chocolates (shhhhh) Everything else He will provide. Speaking of which, Happy Thanksgiving to anyone reading this today. Even here in the desert the Lord is going to provide a meal for me that I won't even prepare. The guys (just two really) from our Bible study are coming and one of them will cook. :) And we hadn't even planned to have a Thanksgiving Dinner... infact, I'll have to tell them that that's what we are having. :)

Cheers and God bless you where ever you are.

"Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee." Isaiah 26:3

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Sponsored Links

I got an e-mail about the post I had just made and as I opened it the first thing that stood out where the sponsored links... don't you just love those?

A Thankful Heart

Some days ago I was reading an article and in it there was a prayer by a young woman. She had recently gotten married and was praising the Lord for how good He had been to her. He gave her a great husband, a home, a good family, a great job... many great things. This is good ofcoure and she does well in praising and thanking God for all this. But then I thought about it a little bit more and I wondered about thanking and praising God when all things seem against you. How about when you are weak and poor and ill and heartbroken, can we then praise God? I think we can, I think we should... I think I could. Tomorrow many people will be celebrating Thanksgiving. I have always loved Thanksgiving because it brings good memories of my childhood, and it has on some occasions fallen right on my Birthday. I remember going to church as a child and seeing family after family bringing in meals, desserts and drinks to share with everyone. I wasn't there with my family and I never got to take anything to give, but I enjoyed so much to see the love and joy in sharing... then in the middle of the meal, someone would stand up and say something he or she was thankful for... this went on for minutes, everybody just getting up to thank God for something... once I was even encouraged to stand up and you can imagine this little skinny girl getting up and saying "I'm thankful for my family". I am still that same little girl, and still this day I am thankful for my family... but as an adult woman my needs and desires are different from a child's. When my heart is broken my valley dark, no flower in vision... can I still give thanks?

There was a moment in my day when I just had to put my head down, and rest as I had no strength for anything else... too tired to cry anymore, no strength to call on the Lord, and then I heard a song. A new song. I am not a musician nor do I consider myself musically gifted. I love music and always have music in my heart... but this was a new song and this is what it said:

When I am weak I'll search you Lord
When I am weak you're strong
When I am weak you heal me Lord
When I am weak I sing

Oh Lord I come to you this day
And sing your praises high
Oh Lord your mercies and your truth
They shine a light in my heart

Cause you are my Strength
You are my Hope
You are my Strength
You are my Hope

II Corinthians 12:9 says:
"And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me."

So even if I'm not that young woman that is being so blessed by all the Lord is giving her I can still rejoice in the desert because that's where God's strength is made perfect. I can be thankful for the heat, for the dryness, the pain because this is what is making me seek the Lord with all I have. Can this really be true? I think it is... I could keep you posted ;)

On a happier note, I got this great encouragment from a wonderful person, who said "You are a precious child to God. When you are brokenhearted, does He stand stoically by without His heart aching? No. That's why in the midst of our pain He asks us to "cast our cares upon Him, for he cares for Jimena."(That's word for word from my Bible! :)"
..... Hehe... I have to get me that Bible... THANK YOU!!! =)