We had a full weekend! I’m mad at myself that I didn’t think far enough ahead to have a “frankly friday” post ready for y’all, but I’m tellin’ you, the way I’ve been sleeping has been killing me! I knew if I didn’t sleep when I felt tired, I’d never make it through Saturday. We had to be ready to roll at 7:20 am, so that meant I was up a little after 6:00.
I didn’t sleep well at all that night, which was really odd. Max seldom has to go out during the night, but there he was, standing on my chest staring down into my face with that Do-my-bidding-NOW! look on his face. (no, I couldn’t see him, but I knew he was doing it okay?)
I let him out about 3:00 am then got back up about 45 minutes later when I rolled over and realized I was sweaty. Whaddaya know? An actual hypo symptom! Go me! So I got up, tested and treated the 45 blood sugar. By the time I got back in bed, it was after 4:00 am and some time after that I had this horrible dream!
People, I seldom EVER dream, but boy, I did this night and it was a doozy…there were cameo appearances by several out-of-place characters I’ve forgotten now, but the boys were little, like tuck-them-in ages and Tommy was being an absolute butt to me! When I was telling him about it, I said that I would almost say we had switched roles in the dream, but even I was never that nasty in front of the boys as he was to me in this dream. It was really bizarre because he’s so not that way. And yes, I have been known to be pretty ugly-acting, but thank God, I’m lots better than I used to be. Right, Honey? …Right? ….RIGHT!?!? 😉
So suffice to say, I had a horrible night and then had to get up W-A-Y-the-heck earlier than I have in ages! A big hydro-flask of strong coffee in tow and we were off. Taylor went with us since she was helping with the event. Love her heart, she slept most of the hour-and-a-half drive there. That child stays tired!
Anyhow, it was a good experience. I will say that some of it was a little unexpected. I don’t know if I missed something during the 12 weeks of study or if that’s how it’s set up, but the end of the thing was just not what I was expecting. I won’t spoil it for anyone else, but if you have questions, just email me, okay? I’ll be glad to answer. It wasn’t that it was bad, just really surprising. It was nice to see a lot of our Emmaus friends and there was lots of music and worship and good speakers. It was a good day, but it felt really long since I was already tired.
Sunday morning we had another amazing sermon, the final one in this series What Lies Beneath. Man, was it awesome! I guess maybe you’ve heard that one before since I keep raving about the messages, but really, if you haven’t checked them out, I urge you to do so. We all have a lot of baggage and issues that we sometimes grow to believe are “just life” or “just the way it is” when that’s not true! This whole series has been about dealing with your “stuff”, facing it, dumping it, forgiving it, conquering it…whatever it is you need to do with it. Then your path to following God’s direction is unhindered with nothing in the way of your progress.
Things like that can become “hidden sins” too. For instance, that coworker who’s always cranky. He claims to be a Christian, but he is always in the foulest mood. That’s NOT an example of a Christ-filled life, people! It’s the total opposite, in fact! We don’t usually refer to that as sin, do we? We just say, “Oh, Gustaf is always that way. It’s just how God made him, I guess.” but is that really true? Does that line up with the fruits of the Spirit in Galatians?
Galatians 5:22-23 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.
Okay, so it’s not saying to NOT do these things is a sin, however, if these are in fact the fruit of being a Jesus-follower, and we’re NOT showing them then…does that not logically lead to them being sins of omission? See? There is a lot of stuff to chew on in this sermon!
Maybe you’ve said that kind of thing about yourself…that you can’t change, you can’t help “the way you are”. …but is that really true?
Romans 12:2 Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.
Galatians 5:16 But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh.
Doesn’t this tell us we can change our lives by the way we think and that if we are in line with God that we won’t just be “the way we are” if that isn’t the way Jesus told us to live?
What things are we doing or not doing daily, without even thinking about it, that are killing our testimony, our witness to others, our walk with Jesus? What things are hindering us from a full, lively relationship with our Father God?
This sermon really got me to thinking about what kind of mindset I have. I’ve complained about how tired I am and folks, I really AM always tired, but I wondered…am I letting that cause me to think even more negatively than I would otherwise? And if so, what can I do to fix it?!
For right now, I’m working on a little project I’ve had on my mind for several weeks since this series began. I’m doing a canvas with the words “I am who the I AM says I am”. It’s a phrase Pastor Trevor used several times and it’s stuck with me. For a person who has had a lifelong negative self-image, this is big. It was like a whole new world of thought opened up for me, ya know? I guess that’s kinda pathetic, but it’s honest and that’s just how we roll here in Dog Years, right? 😉
To wrap this up, things I learned this weekend:
- things aren’t always what they seem
- we have the power to change our lives when we change our mind(set) to align with God’s will
- I have an amazing church (a’course, I already knew that!)
- God sees my potential, not my past or present
- with Jesus by my side, there is always hope
I’ll upload a pic of my finished project (if it turns out to suit me, that is!) when it’s ready. For now, will you join me in renewing our minds to follow God’s will? I foresee some tough choices ahead, but that’s okay. How many, MANY verses are there about God finishing what He starts and never leaving us? Plenty enough for us to do this thing! After all…
Romans 8:31 …if God is for us, who can be against us?
Hey y’all! Hope your week is off to an amazing start. I am running on less than 10 hours sleep today, so that’s progress! (I’m not joking!)
But enough about my terrible lack of energy these days…
We had another tremendous sermon yesterday. This whole series has been SO wonderful and SO needed! We all have mental and emotional stuff…baggage, garbage, whatever you wanna call it. We all have it, unfortunately. Some of us create our own and some have other people who create it for us, but either way, it’s not healthy and if we are having major struggles with our emotional “junk” then we can’t be as spiritually healthy as we need to be and can be!
So yesterday’s message was about insecurity. Insecurity is defined as so:
uncertainty or anxiety about oneself; lack of confidence.
Pretty common knowledge, right? Yeah, so what can contribute to insecurity? One of the things Pastor Trevor brought up was the fact that we have these “competing identities”. For instance:
the way you see “you”
the way others see “you”
the way you *think* others see “you”
the way you can’t see yourself due to your *ideas* of “you”
the way you *think* “you” should look/be
the way you *think* God sees “you”
the way God *actually* sees “you”
Like most anything else, when it comes to reality, our minds…our self-imposed ideas of what should or should not be…our way of letting others dictate how we view things can really mess up what God has created. We have to learn to replace our faulty, deceptive way of thinking with the truth of God’s word.
The way WE see ourselves can be really distorted by our own faulty thinking or by the way others have described us. The way others see us can also be a distortion depending on their own individual emotional “stuff” and the way they filter information about the world around them. If they’ve been sort-of *programmed* (for lack of a better word right now) to be negative about things, they are liable to only see the flaws in everything/one else! If a person has been “taught” to have a low view of themselves, they are likely to not even notice anyone around them due to thinking they’re so unworthy or unwanted. See? Most of the times, others will see us a lot closer to reality unless we are “putting on a show” and pretending to be something we’re not.
“O Lord God, do not turn away the face of your anointed one! Remember your steadfast love for David your servant.” ~2 Chronicles 6:42
The way others see us can also be a distortion depending on their own individual emotional “stuff” and the way they filter information about the world around them. If they’ve been sort-of *programmed* (for lack of a better word right now) to be negative about things, they are liable to only see the flaws in everything/one else! If a person has been “taught” to have a low view of themselves, they are likely to not even notice anyone around them due to thinking they’re so unworthy or unwanted. See? Most of the time, however, others will see us a lot closer to reality unless we are “putting on a show” and pretending to be something we’re not.
The way we THINK others see us is almost always incorrect. Even more so if we have an unhealthy of our own selves. Of course, how we feel and think about ourselves factors heavily into this. If we are thinking in unhealthy and deceptive ways about ourselves, we will automatically believe others see us the same way.
The way we see ourselves is largely based on the ideas and ideals we have. If we have lopsided ideas about ourselves, we’re obviously NOT going to be able to see ourselves with truth. It’s one of those can’t-see-the-forest-for-the-trees situations. We can’t see our true self for all the bad ideas we have, all the deceptive ideals we’ve created about who we are.
This goes along with the way we THINK we should look or be. Almost ALL the time this is going to be due to influences around us. The way our parents raised us or talked to us, the way our friends have treated us or persuaded us to feel/think. Many times, it’s also clouded with lots of untruths and unfair comparisons.
How we THINK God sees us can be unbelievably skewed and affected by many different experiences we’ve had thus far in our lives.
There are tons of bad theology out there about how God sees His children! For instance, a theology that says you have to “do” certain things or “be” a certain way in order for God to love you or sometimes to even receive salvation!
I have one word to say about this kind of “religion”: RUN! Fast and far. Jesus loves us where we are. He died for us before we even knew Him. He’s not waiting for you to fulfill a checklist of tasks before He will love you. (sorry for this rabbit trail!) So, obviously, there are LOTS of ways we mess up the way God actually sees us because of how we THINK He sees us. Stop putting God in a box!
“He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things?”
How can I know how God *actually* sees me? That’s the easiest part. He used all these people through several centuries to write His love letter to the world. All of it is contained in the Bible. To know God’s heart, His will for you, the way He sees you … read His word! Once you start immersing yourself in scripture, you will begin to see His will, His guiding hand, all over your life and you’ll be more at peace when the path starts to get a little bumpy.