Jun 8, 2015

The Gift Of Pain


I've come to the conclusion that pain is a gift.  In our physical bodies
pain signals our brain when something is wrong and in our spiritual life the same principal holds true.  Pain heightens my awareness of the need for a physician. Jesus is the great Physician... The head of the body of Christ, without which their would be NO HEALTH in the body.
   Jesus said I have not come for the well but for the sick.  And how are we to know of our need for the Balm of Gilead if we have no pain?  The pain in my life wether it be emotional , spiritual, or physical sends a signal to my soul that I must come close to the heart of the Savior and allow His scalpel (the word of God ) to cut into my heart . The word pierce's to the division of soul and spirit and joint's and marrow and discerns for me the thoughts and intentions of my heart which in turn opens my heart up to the word -which is medicine to my soul. If it were not for the pain of empty dreams I would never have found the remedy.  And it's in my brokenness that I become aware of the need for a shepherd to bind up my wounds.
   I wouldn't trade the pain in my life for anything because the intimacy I share with the Savior is more precious that anything this world has to offer.  It's more valuable than gold or diamonds or any other thing I esteem in this life.  To know Him intimately and to be able to feel His breath near me-to have Him whisper to me that I'm beautiful, and tell me He loves me in a thousand different ways is priceless. And not only that , but that HE WANTS ME ,  And to KNOW that I needn't fear falling into sin because I have fallen SO IN LOVE with Him!  I no longer am drawn away by the things the world offers to me.  I have the most beautiful lover, protector, and knight in shining armor RIGHT beside me devoted to my every need.  His love consumes me ,  and offers me HIS strength and the warmth of His protection. When I am close enough to hear His heart beat -His Spirit overtakes me in waves of rapturous delight. Only when I turn away from Him does that pleasure drain away.  In His presence is fullness of joy and His right hand are pleasures forevermore.
     There is no man on this earth including the man I am one flesh with that can possibly offer me this kind of love.  But CHRIST, my heavenly husband loves me fiercely.  So fiercely that if I wander way from Him where harm can come to me , He does the HARD thing and the best thing for me. He wounds so that I will learn to stay close.....but He also heals.  I wouldn't trade one moment of chastisement from Him for a literal husband that "worships the ground that I walk on" . Weeping may endure for a night but joy comes in the morning.
    This morning I thanked the Lord for the pain in my life with the utmost sincerity . I cannot imagine where I would be and the fear that would consume my heart without Him near me in this cold dark world.  Had it not been for the pain that drew me to Him and continuously draws me back..... I would have no hope of spiritual wholeness .  I have resolved the question in my own heart that Jesus asked the paraplegic ... Do you want to be made whole?  I DO !-and the only way I am whole is when He fills my brokenness with His love.  All the cracks and crevices that have been such a deep aching abyss in me for so many years have been filled up with His love.  I must continuously be filled up with His love because I am SO enamored with Him that nothing the world offers me can draw my heart away from Him . The Living Water of His Holy Spirit has become a well springing up in me continuously and overflowing  . And I wouldn't trade the peace and refreshment of that well for anything.

Feb 25, 2015

Submission- Look " UP " When Your Own Plan Has Failed


I think there is much confusion about submission in Christian circles. Submission happens when we determine to substitute Gods mission for our own. Submission = a substitute mission.....Simple as that . My mission up until I met Jesus Christ,was to serve me-My desires ,my needs. I am by natural fallen nature - selfish. So the word submission used to make the hair on my neck stand up. I believe that that word when used by anyone, wether it's referring to men submitting to God through sacrificial love for their wives, or women submitting to God through submission and respect for their husbands as well as any number of other scenarios... gets our flesh in a tizzy~ Yet If we are stoking the fire of the Holy Spirit in our lives, we will want to know Christ who is the purest model of submission better through obedience at ALL COSTS. Jesus said Take up your cross and follow Me.   I want to know Him and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of sharing in His sufferings, that I may obtain the resurrection of the dead.
The dog in the movie "Up" is such a great example of biblical submission. The minute he meets Carl, he loves him and asks him will you be my master?? This ought to be our attitude having met Jesus Christ! Will you be my master and teach me your ways? Submission is nothing more or less than coming under the "shadow of His wings"  because we love him and He first loved us. In the movie Carl says I was hiding under your porch because I love you. And He is such a happy go lucky personality. You can't help but love this dog.  I have been hiding under the shadow of God's wings through submission to Him and it's because I love Him. And the longer I have ministered to the Lord through obedience, the more happy go lucky I have become as well! When I used to hang out with the the rebellious, I inevitably ended up wearing the collar of shame. Satan is good at luring us away from God and the minute we're caught he pulls out the collar of shame.

When a women or a man is striving to please God in every way possible- women through submission to their authorities and men through submission to their authority (Christ and their brothers in Christ ) and either one doesn't feel heard in their relationships  , it's not an excuse to throw the command of God out the window. Men are still called to love their wives as Christ loved the church and submit to other men in the church and governing authorities and  women are still called to respect their husband and submit to them. When your spouse is making no effort to do their part, you will either cling to the truth for all its worth, or you may give up entirely. The word says :Let God be true and every man a liar. The answer is not to lower the standard, but to do your best as an individual to hold the banner high through obedience.
Obedience to God is our only hope for things to ever change. I am one of those women who actually believes that every word of God is pure to the conversion of the soul... and that if we grow not weary in well doing in due time we will reap a harvest if we do not faint.(Galatians).  But instead of  always looking for a harvest of fruit in my husbands life as proof that I should submit to him, I want to submit to Jesus proven by submission to my husband and reap a harvest in my own life! He is the vinedresser of the vineyard not me.  I am a mere branch that takes it's life from the vine. I can no more produce fruit in my husband than I can in myself! I am a branch who receives it's life from abiding in the vine and I cannot abide if I am constantly grieving the Spirit WHO IS my life. The flip side of this is that my husband will reap a harvest of fruit as well if I abide through his connection with me because the two become one in marriage.....What I do WILL ultimately affect him. It most likely will take time for the affects to be really seen, but if you planted a seed of truth it will reap a harvest of truth.. Am I saying that my husband will get saved? There's a good chance he will! But I don't know that for sure. What I do say is that Gods word does NOT return void and if we live our lives based on the truth , the truth will affect our life , our spouse's life and the life of others looking on. Not only that but the secrets of the Lord belong to us who are obedient.
John 15:14-15 You are my friends if you do what I command. I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master's business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you.
When I first began walk with God and ultimately to submit to my unsaved husband I thought of Jesus as my Master (and still do!), but Oh! To think that I am called a friend of God because Jesus has made to known to me everything He has learned from His Father. Jesus has made known to me His plan for me (submission- substituting His mission for my own selfish one) and Jesus Himself learned obedience by the things that he suffered! Talk about a humbling thought. We will not learn obedience to God if we are not willing to suffer. So if your feelings are hurt by a husband that you feel is uncaring and unloving, TRUST God. We are not JUST a picture of Christ and the church when both the husband and wife are walking in obedience, we are a picture of Christ and the church (his bride) when things are imperfect, but we cling to His word as truth and our only hope for recovery from the state of depravity we were in prior to Christ saving us. . And even if it's only one of us clinging to that truth. I don't believe for a minute that there is any such thing as a perfect marriage where BOTH husband and wife walk perfectly the way that God would have them to. Christ and His bride (the church) illustrate that. And in that case WE the bride are the ones who walk imperfectly. We are in process of coming into the likeness of Christ, If Christ joined Himself with an imperfect flawed human being like you and I, why do we think that a marriage where things are off balance is not a proper representation of Christ and the church! ? I daresay, It more CLEARLY represents Christ and the church! We walk by faith and NOT by sight! When one person is determining to obey God even if they seem despised because of it , it represents Christ and His bride more perfectly than we think! I'm NOT saying that as time goes on we shouldn't (as Christians in marriage), become a more radiantly beautiful partner (spiritually speaking) , in that marriage, but what I'm saying is that all it takes is ONE person willing to be obedient at all costs, for Christ and His bride to be represented properly. Two walking in the Spirit is wonderful , but don't underestimate the impact you can have EVEN if you are the only one in the marriage really working at change. In the case of Christ and his bride that one person was Christ. It is a lie from the pit of hell that if both people are not walking in the Spirit , that marriage cannot properly represent Christ and the church. So TAKE heart! All you women or men who are in unequally yoked marriages or even those in marriages where you feel your spouse is not making the effort that you are. Christ Himself who is without fault or blemish (which none of us can claim) took us to be His bride as desperately wicked human beings.While we were yet sinners Christ died for us. His love is a refining fire and agape love is stronger than death! Our hearts used to be desperately wicked, but because of the death and resurrection of Christ , we who have received Him have been made alive as well.  We have the very heart of Christ and we need to walk according to the new heart. Walk in the Spirit!
    As I began to submit my husband, I came up againt fierce opposition in many dfferent forms,but I was ultimately wrestling satan
. He didn't want me to submit because he knew it would be the thing that would unleash the power of God in my life.  The gates of hell came against me too however they did not prevail against me . Gods love is winning  out. I have been submitting to my husband for 15 years and I have the promise of God that in due time I will reap a harvest. In the meantime I am harvesting the fruit of the vine (Jesus Christ ) in my own life. I love my husband more than ever (pure love) I have peace, I have joy, much more patience and am learning to long-suffer.  There is a gentleness in me that I never used to have, and self control is developing as well . These fruits are all in my life compliments of Jesus the vine and His Father the vinedresser who prunes as He sees fit. My husband still doesn't often give heed to my suggestions or feelings  when I tell him my views, but the joy of the Lord is my strength.  And when I seem obsessed about submission I am really just obsessed with the one who modeled submission to the Father . The one who is submission..... the one who is the way, the truth, and the life. The one who set His face like flint towards Jerusalem, the one who is the author and finisher of our faith who or the joy that was set before Him endured the cross , despising the shame and has sat down at the right hand of the Father, the one through whom we MUST come to the Father, if we are to come at all !

Dec 5, 2014

Christ IN ME -The Hope Of Glory! Miracle In My Heart-

   There are times when the Lord uses a situation in the body of Christ to draw out things from inside of me and I KNOW it's His time for me to
share .  One such time happened a couple weeks ago .  A friend invited me to go with her to her fellowship's harvest dinner at a wonderful church body nearby .  I was SO blessed.  After the dinner the Pastor shared a message on Thanksgiving and the importance of it in the life of EVERY believer. He taught on the gospel story of the ten lepers.  I was so amazed as I revisited the account of the ten lepers with this relatively small church body and at the end of the message , he invited anyone to share a story of the faithfulness of God and what they were thankful for.
What was overwhelmingly bubbling up inside of me that I am thankful for is, the miracle God is working in my heart.  I was compelled to share how the Lord has changed my heart towards my husband who is an unbeliever.
    When I first became enflamed with the love of God it was wonderful to receive His mercy and grace, but giving it out was a lot harder.  Especially to my husband.  It is always harder to give out freely to those closest to you that you've been hurt by. And when I was born again, my husband didn't know what to make of this new creature living under his roof.  He was afraid and resentful because I was a different person.  He didn't marry this new creature, he married the old Ruth.  And I didn't like the situation either!  It's no fun being unequally yoked.  All of a sudden a sword came into our home dividing us. And we weren't the best of friends to begin with.  I couldn't escape daily warfare.  For me leaving my marriage was not an option but staying was a daily struggle.  I determined early on that my goal would be to "die daily"  for the sake of the gospel . And a slow grueling death it was.  Because each day I was faced with the choice to either obey the truths that I was being convicted by-in the word or grieve the spirit of God and suffer the consequences. This new found love that was growing in my heart was so wonderful I couldn't get enough of it and I wanted MORE of Jesus! He literally became my husband. All that I had wanted in a husband but didn't get (the fairy tale) , Jesus became .....like a Knight in shining armor!  He rescued me, but He didn't rescue me FROM the truth... He rescued me through the truth. Instead of rescuing me from the enemy , He walked me through enemy territory.  I had to face some hard truths about who I was and the wrongs I had done against God by my rebellion toward my husband who I now knew I was ONE flesh with.  Every wrong I had done to him, I had done to myself.  A house divided against itself cannot stand the word says. Anything that has two heads is a freak and anything that has no head is dead as Adrian Rogers once said. The Lord spoke to me from Proverbs that a wise woman builds her house but a foolish woman tears it down with her own hands! And he assured me that I was to submit to my husband as unto the Lord.  I was cut to the core by that truth.  I HAD BEEN the foolish woman.  But I determined to change direction and trust the Lord to walk me through the enemies territory.  The Lord assured me that I would make it through, since He had already won the victory at the cross, and that He would hold my hand every step of the way.  I bumbled and stumbled much , fell down completely many times, and cried a lot , but each and every time the Lord picked me up and dusted me off and told me to keep on going.  He was so consistent and faithful in His love and tenderness towards me as continuously beat myself up over my failures. I knew what I ought to be because Gods word showed me what I ought to be, and yet I was so AWARE that I fell painfully short . " I would have fainted had I not believed I would see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living" as the word says. And there most definitely were MANY times I doubted I would ever see His goodness break through enough to see my husband born again. But when we are faithless still He is faithful. I kept on praying and running to the fountain of Living Water and seeking to obey each word quickened to my heart by His Spirit. And I saw my soul being converted before my very eyes.  "Every word of God is pure to the conversion of the soul "
    That day at the harvest dinner I stood up and shared that I am so thankful that although I hated the situation I found myself in when I woke up in the land of the Living (born again) , I now am SO THANKFUL as I am seeing my soul converted before my own eyes . My husband is still not a born again believer but I love my husband more today than the day I married him.  But that's because the love I had for him then wasn't really love.  It was selfishness. I wanted him to make ME happy. The only intentions I really had to make him happy were ONLY IF HE MADE ME HAPPY;  But the Lord has changed my heart.  It's not a starry eyed , fairy tale love, but it is enduring love.  It IS a never will I leave you nor forsake you love. It's the very love of God which has compelled me to love the unlovable.  And we were ALL unlovable before agape love made His home in our hearts!  Praise God for Emmanuel "God with us"!  But even greater than that, praise God for Christ IN US, the hope of glory.  Lord I humbly ask that you continue to work greater and greater miracles in my heart by your grace ,and for your glory!

Listen below;
Robin Mark -Miracle In My Heart

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WE HAVE THIS TREASURE IN EARTHEN VESSELS THAT THE EXCELLENCY OF THE POWER MAY BE OF GOD. I am the wife Of Don and mother of two boys and a stay at home mom. My goal is to follow Jesus in all aspects of life but starting first and foremost in my own home.Titus 2:3-5 I stumble often and get discouraged, but am amazed as I go to my Lord in faith that he looks upon me with compassion, forgiveness and love each and every time. His love for me seems to increase as I keep going back to His throne of grace!! Of course I know His love never changes, but my ability to see His love increases each time He picks me up, dusts me off and says "keep on going Ruth.... I love you!" And because of His great love, I am falling more and more in love with Him each and every day.