Some great advice from our guest blogger, Trish Partch. Where do you need to do this too?
Some great advice from our guest blogger, Trish Partch. Where do you need to do this too?
Obedience is something that has always been a struggle….not only for me but for everyone. The willingness to be vulnerable, to let something or someone else control and set boundaries for you and tell you what you can and cant do…..not easy.
I always thought obedience was this scene of a slave master with a cracking whip and we are all at the mercy of the master. Any slight hint of disobedience would result in pain and discomfort.
Recently my views on obedience have shifted. Maybe it has to do with age, with maturity….. with graduating school, with being in the real world, but something in my head recently clicked and for the better. Ive realized that obedience isn’t fear but respect. I’ve realized that obedience isn’t a box to keep you locked in but an opportunity to step out and test patience, self control and will power. God asks for our obedience not because he likes to see us suffer or because He wants to have an excuse to punish us. But obedience is a result of His love. He wants us to obey Him for our protection. He wants to protect us from pain, heartbreak, sorrow, hurt and anything that can destroy our love for each other and Him. God promises us that if we are faithful to Him and His word he WILL bless us, we just have to be obedient, love Him and one another.
This discipline is a good in itself and WILL build character in us so that when God presents to us His plan, we are ready inside and out and can full enjoy His blessings.
This week I’ve been heavily listening to new tracks off the Gungor album. Check out this song called “I am mountain.” Great song and great lyrics. Enjoy!
Thanks so much to Trish who is my guest blogger today. She has some good words to share with us!
Eph 6:10-17 (NIV) …Be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled round your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
This verse always reminds me that God is light, that he provides direction, and that he eliminates darkness. This has been experienced time and time again to be true – just think about it in your own life. I grew up as a Christian. There were times that I went away from God, times when I came back to God – this happened and continues to happen frequently for me even now. However, every time I find myself falling away from God and getting wrapped up in my life, my experiences, and ultimately my own drama… I always come back. I come back to God, and then I find peace. It is when I find peace that I am able to rest. God for me is the balance in my life. I know from my own personal experiences that no matter what evil or darkness comes my way, God is there with me. Even if I don’t feel it, no matter how alone or far away I may feel from everyone – God is there and always was and always will be. Though I may have not been mindful of this before, I am most definitely aware of it now. In fact, for me, there can be no questioning of this. It’s one of those things that once you see it happen and know of it to be true, there can be no questioning of it. It would be like saying there is no sun, when we know it and see it every single day. I, myself, can see God in my own life working in ways that I didn’t even know were possible… and could definitely have never even dreamt of or imagined.
For me, God has been a foundation; a solidity; a constant – something that has just always BEEN. So even when I decided to make my own decisions – ones that I left God out of, ones that were self seeking, ones that were aimed at pleasure and instant gratification – I found myself coming up short. I found myself hurt, I found myself lacking – confused. The reason being was that I didn’t let God lead me in these decisions. We as humans are so quick to react to life, feeling often that it is life that is giving us bad experiences, bad luck, etc…. when in reality it is God – God is in fact giving us lessons, teachings, blessings/opportunities – these experiences are the messengers… they are coming our way constantly – they will continue throughout life – and they are meant for us to take in/ ENJOY with the good, and LEARN from the bad – and JUST BE with the indifferent.
Things to remember:
In moments of confusion, He is there…
In moments where one feels weak, He is there…
I continue to look forward to some of the challenges because I honestly believe and have the faith that God has beautiful and wonderful things for me in these moments though they may not be easy. I know that He will continue to bless me with these experiences – he will take away the dark – I just had to believe that. He will ALWAYS take away the dark if you let him work through you. That really took me some time to understand. But I know it to be a TRUTH. I know that He is using me every day as a LIGHT, a healer, a friend, a coworker, a listener – a woman of God. Someone that will bring LIGHT not only to the day but to everyone that I come into contact with. Of that I can be sure!
Many Blessings to all – & consider this: we are never alone, we are always free, and it is the LIGHT that can heal all those around us that are suffering. Continue to be a LIGHT for all that are in your own world.
**Trish Partch – (August 7, 2013)
Hello friends, sorry its been a while since I’ve blogged but here are my 2 cents for this week in August. Recently I had the pleasure of attending the wedding of a fellow musician and good friend from SDCC and had a great time. It really made me think about how God gives us these moments of celebration in this life…. always life with others and life in Him. It reminded me that sometimes stress and worries occupy our minds. They become like dark clouds and can shadow our perception of happiness and joy. God made us to rejoice in Him and His blessing and drink in all of the wonderful offerings of life.
As people who serve and strive to be the best we can be, we can easily focus on what’s not meeting the mark, the negative, what went wrong, what’sannoying, where we’re not getting the response we expect. But, how important it is that we focus on God’s offerings and blessings, and not only acknowledged them but CELEBRATE THEM!!!!!!!
So this week I encourage you to focus on celebrating God’s love. There is so much to celebrate there! I know I have I can celebrate this so I ask you all to celebrate all the good He has done for you and celebrate all He WILL do for you.
Here is a song I’ve been listening to this week. It’s a gospel groove and it reminds me of the happiness and joy of music in worship. and how we celebrate our love of God and His love for us. Its called “I love you” by Anthony Evans
Days like yesterday come and go, days where you wake up feeling off, feeling strange, feeling unsure. Days when you get out a bed and your feet don’t land in the same place and the rhythm of life takes you for a double time. Yesterday was a day filled with uncertainty. I know God is always with me but yesterday it felt as if He was out of the office for the day. Why is that, why do we feel this way? I began to think this more and more as my day unfolded with more surpirse, more news that kept me off balance. I could slowly feel joy slip out and oozing out of me, as if it were leaving me saying: “Peace, I’m outta here.” The day didn’t seem to get any better but near the end of the evening I was reminded of something that hadn’t come to mind in a while. It was a verse that crept back into my brain that had been hiding since last August. The verse was Romas 8:28. “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”
This verse was so improtant to me last year and as things in life got better this verse slowly slipped away, but then yesterday it resurface, it came out of the woodwork and sparked my spirit. It’s so easy to forget how powerful God’s words are. There is so much power in God’s word that when I was feeling down, the quick reminder of this verse lifted my spirits, imporved my mood and reminded me of God’s love and plans for my life. I have a purpose and nothing can take away that purpose God has given me, as long as I remember I am God’s I put all my faith and trust in Him. He never said this journey of faith would be easy but He said it would always be worth it.
I encourage you all to remember this verse when things aren’t going well, and watch God’s power transform your day. Also listen to this song I’ve been listening to all week. It’s by Hillsong Young and Free called “Alive” Enjoy!
Hey guys. Our friend Trish Partch from home group and the EDGE shared something cool with me and I thought you would enjoy it too!
The next time you lose heart and you can’t bear to experience what you’re feeling, you might recall this instruction: change the way you see it and lean in. Instead of blaming our discomfort on outer circumstances or on our own weakness, we can choose to stay present and awake to our experience, not rejecting it, not grasping it, not buying the stories that we relentlessly tell ourselves. This is priceless advice that addresses the true cause of suffering—yours, mine, and that of all living beings.
SO for me,… I’ve been at home sick yesterday and again today. My quickest thing is to go directly into the self pity and depression, sadness – why am I sick? Why me? Why isn’t anyone taking care of me? etc. BUT, just like anything else, there’s a message in this – I know for a fact, that I have been – go, go, going…. and sometimes, when you take on that type of mentality, your body will shut you down – it’s inevitable. That’s what definitely is happening here for me. 2 days of being in the bed and resting with a horrible sore throat also gives one time to think… SO, I’m keeping it positive (well, as much as one can when sick), but reflecting that rest is a bit more necessary – not sure if anyone else is like this??? Hmmm…. do we have anyone else like this in our home group??? Anyone else, that has that “go, go, go” philosophy or lifestyle… ? I’m just curious. But this not really to uncommon for anyone of us at any point in our lives. Sometimes we can’t even see it because we are just so non-stop and not even conscious to it.
I’ll leave you with one little verse from Matthew – it’s a classic one, so you’ve probably heard it before but maybe you have not heard it in The Message version (Matthew 11:28-30):
“Are you tired? Worn out? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me – watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.”
Wishing you all a restful, burden-free week…