Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Wage War against your soul

In the hallway Dan and I are in, we have been reading scripture together and discussing it. Its been really helpful in bringing us to the foot of the cross together as a couple. We've been thru 1st Samuel and now we have read 1st Peter. Here are some thoughts while discussing the book, and things that the Lord brought out.

"Having purified your souls by your obedience to the truth for a SINCERE brotherly love, love one another earnestly from a pure heart since you have been born again not of perishable seed but of imperishable through the living word of God." 1st Peter 1:22-23

Having purified your souls by obedience to the truth. Hm. If I think about my life and my actions I know that there are times that I have not purified my soul in following the truth. Truth, what is truth. 
This is something I asked my Middle school girls often. Their response, truth is God, truth is what I see, truth is what I feel.  Then, I ask the follow up question, how do you know what truth is. Can you prove truth.  Thinking on this, makes me go to a verse the Lord has been working in me the last year on.
Philippians 4:8-9. You know the passage, whatever is right, true, noble, praiseworthy, lovely think on these things whatever you have learned, seen, put in the practice and the peace of God will guard your hearts in Christ Jesus.: (I realize I paraphrased it) Why do I tie this into the other verse?

I think there are many time we focus on things that are not true. We focus on issues that for example are filled with our pride, thinking while others are sharing we know it better. We, especially with others, focus on hurts, or our agenda. Do we love with a SINCERE love? How often do we purify our hearts with truth when we love others. Is what we think truth about them, or what they think? Do we listen, or do we judge.  I know for me, I am so guilty of trying to fix them in my mind while talking. I try sometimes to annalize them, but I think often its my agenda. Do we sincerely listen to those that the Lord has put in our path? Listening is just opening up your ears to hear what they are saying, and not in your mind thinking of your response while they are talking.  Ooh,  I'm guilty again.

This part brought to me another passage in 1st Peter:

Beloved, I urge you as sojourners and exiles to abstain from the passion of the flesh, WHICH WAGE WAR AGAINST YOU." 

These things wage war, Hm. War-
 Loving and serving the military we know what war is. We know the effects, and the demands and the casualties. Think about war in your soul.
A state of armed conflict between different nations or states or different groups within a nation or state.
Engage in a war.
noun.  warfare - battle - fight - struggle - combat - strife
verb.  fight - combat - battle - make war

We are in a spiritual fight, flesh is waring about our spirit daily, hourly, every minute. Think with me about war. Think about all the different fasicits of war. This thought brought me to thinking on how many people parished, or were hurt because I was in sin walking in the flesh. That thought brought me to my knees yesterday as we are in ministry and there are times we minister out of our flesh. After wrestling with this thought for a while, the Lord calmed my soul with " but God and his grace and mercy"  I know there are times (hard to admit) where I was not allowing the Lord to saturate my soul, and I was walking in Becke's stubbornness and pride. I confessed all those times when I thought back of what ministry would have looked like if in that moment I allowed the Lord to saturate me. Now don't miss hear me, most times I do allow the Lord, but you know, we are human, and stubborn.  I am just saying, I am not 100%, 100% of the time. 

In thinking about war in our soul, 1st Peter 2:22 "He commited no sin, neither was deceit found in his mouth when he was reviled he did not revile in return." Hm. Revile? definition: Criticize in an abusive or angrily insulting manner.  Oh ouch. Ok, how many of you are perfect in this area. How many of you are verbal processors. I process verbally, but that doesn't mean I need to sin in processing. How many times do we sin and call it processing verbally. Again, guilty. Oh man, see why this book is kicking my butt.  I think especially in the church, we try to process things that happen and in so doing fall into gossip and don't even know it. I had a good friend the other day, tell me that I know your processing this, but I don't need to hear it, and be a part of this conversation. I so value that, cause how many of us just let others talk. So to that person, Thank you.
I could write for hours on 1st Peter but for the sake of your eyes, and my fingers, I will end here. 
Needless to say, blogger land, this book has kicked my butt, (God has kicked my butt) and am realizing how much I  need the Lord. How much I need Him to saturate every part of my heart. 

I would love to hear your thoughts bloggers and readers.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Praising HIM -Even here- in this Hallway

Have you ever wondered What is God doing?

This has been our heart cry for the past 2 weeks or so.
As you know the door to Osan closed, or rather stayed closed to us. This was a huge surprise to all involved, as well as us. About that time there was a post on Facebook (yes there is good with Facebook) that was this:

This was right on time, (which the Lord knew) 
What was interesting to me is thinking on the idea of the hallway.  Am I uncomfortable in the hallway? or am I liking the hallway. Do I set up house in the hallway of life? Who else will I meet in the hallway that needs the peace and joy of the Lord. As we think about this time in between doors, we are blessed beyond measure. The Lord has provided above our wildest imaginations while being here. HE has given us up speakable joy. Yesterday was a hard day, and I had a meltdown. But when I stopped to think about why the meltdown happened, I realized I took my eyes off the Lord and His purposes and looked thru man's eyes (ok woman's eyes) and got thrown off of praising Him. 
Its interesting to me that when I am focused on what the Lord is doing, and what He has done in and thru us even here, I stand amazed. How can I not praise Him in the hallway. 
Believe me there are times I want to climb thru the window, but if I did, I would miss what God has for me here and now. What I am coming to enjoy is EVEN HERE God is giving joy, and my job is to praise Him in the hallway. I am also called to help others around me in the hallway, or who are stuck and frightened here to come alive to the knowledge of God. 
I start to think about what each of our hallways look like. 
MY hallway (usually during transition) my thoughts of the hallway are the image below.

This will be no surprise to many, but I think in people. All my life has been filled with memories good and bad of encounters with others. Many of these photo memories are filled with memories of the Lord. In fact most are, but there are tons of photos and images on my walls. People who have shown Christ, glimpses of God at work, and then sad faces of those who have chosen a path that leads to hardness of heart. Those are the images that hurt me soul the most. Usually in transition is where we walk thru hallways of life; ours in no different. While we leave communities and people we love, I envision walking thru this hallway encountering memories of things that have changed us along the way.

Thinking about hallways makes me ask the question, what does your hallway look like? Dan's hallway is so different than mine. As yours will be different from others. So what does your hallway look like? And, what do you look like when you come out on the other side. OR, do you ever go thru another door? are you stuck in the hallway?
Take a look at the images below, I fond myself looking on google at images of hallways, and that started my mind going a million miles in different directions.  There are hallways with building comforts, dark scary hallways, hallways with hardship, dispair, hallways filled with hurting people. What does your hallway look like?

IS it roomy, have you made improvements?Is the hallway different by time you enter the other door, or are you?

Thoughts that keep my mind processing change, and transition. So, here we stand with YOU Lord, we can do no more than to Praise you in this hallway!

Below is a video, or link to a song by Francis chan's daughter called "Even Here". This has become a dear song to us at this time!

I would love to hear about your hallway... or stories from your hallway. email me at:
 We are heading to Poland, (stopped for the night at a hotel) so we can help others. No point in just focusing on us, there is much hurt and need out there.