In Awe of God

A little over a week ago, I encountered God’s presence and power in an unexpected way! If you have read my previous posts you may know I was in a depression, darkness. Even though I was in that place I still tried to pursue God, I struggled to keep myself reading and praising God. I was searching for something, for Him, I felt empty and couldn’t fill myself up.

My son has started talking about joining the marines. As my husband and I have been having talks with him I realized something about myself! I figured out that I wasn’t missing anything in my physical life. I knew the moment I was saved that God would use me but I have never felt like He has used me. It has made me feel useless and like a nothing. I was saved 7 years ago, that’s a long time to feel like you haven’t progressed in the kingdom. I used to be a member of a church I loved and I helped clean. I quit 4 years ago because of different reasons that I really don’t even remember now. I have had moments of wanting to go back but my husband didn’t want to so I would be back where I started. I just continued doing church at home and doing things online.

Well, my son asked me to watch boot camp videos. I didn’t want to but I did it anyway for him. As I watched these videos my spiritual eyes were opened. I correlated the marines to Christianity. I suddenly realized I needed to be back at church! That was my answer! I admired my son’s love of the marines and because of that he wanted to join. I knew that because of my love and passion for Jesus that I needed to be with other believers. I need them and they need me!

That night I had a dream of being back at my church. When I woke up I knew God’s will for me is to go back but I also knew my husband wouldn’t want to go. Well, I brought it up anyway and told him about my dream with tears in my eyes. He told me if that’s what I really want then he would go with me, for me. I was so excited! I called my friend from church that I cleaned with and told her everything. Come to find out she had not been cleaning for some time and said she had been procrastinating about going back. I immediately felt God and knew He was in this.

When I was driving the car that day my song on my mp3 player came on In Awe Of You. I bawled my head off in the car. I have been delivered from darkness into His marvelous light! He has made all things new! I see a bright future ahead for 2018 in my church! I will be rededicating my life to the church in March and I can’t wait! I look forward to living my days now with anticipation of what God has in store! No more fear!

I’m also doing a Bible study on Revelation and another one online with Proverbs 31. I am fulfilled experiencing God’s presence and power in my life and there is nothing else like it! Nothing can take the place of God! Nothing!

 

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Wait! The Light Is Bursting Through!

Psalm 34:3, O magnify the Lord with me,
And let us lift up His name together.

Let’s praise God and honor Him. Speak of all the ways God is good and holy. And even though we are sinful God made a way for us to fellowship through Jesus. We should be praising and raising His name up everyday, everywhere! God, help me remember everyday Your grace toward me! Help me share with others the wonderous things you are doing in my life!

Trail to the Tree

The scripture is about when Jesus was buried in a borrowed tomb and the two Mary’s were waiting outside the tomb.

Ann says: Today, wait. Sit at the tomb and wait on the Lord. Trust when all is dark. Believe when the stone is rolled in and sealed. Carry a stone in your pocket and remember: there is hope. Wait and have faith in the coming Resurrection, glorious light erupting on black horizon.

When our sins are ever before us, meaning when we come to realize we are sinners then we find ourselves waiting to see what will happen next. Where do we go from here? We need God to rescue us. I experienced this but at the time I didn’t realize what was happening. Before my salvation experience I was aware of my sinfulness and I knew I didn’t deserve anything that I had. I thanked God for everything and this was the beginning of my salvation. It was over a period of a month or two that this happened. I was led to read the Bible and then had an urge to know more about Jesus. I watched The Gospel of John and realized Jesus was choosing me to follow Him. I repented and asked for forgiveness and fell in love with Him. He made His presence known to me in this moment. I had new life! Salvation isn’t something we can “make” happen, it’s the power of the Holy Spirit that raises us from “the dead” in spirit to new life. The same power that raised Jesus is the same power that raises us. When things look dark just wait and the light will come bursting through!

 

 

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Prayer Fills Us With God’s Presence

Today’s reading is a poem written by Augustine of Hippo as a prayer to the Holy Spirit. He is asking for the Holy Spirit to be present in him, to act in him, draw his heart, strengthen and guard him, all to be more holy himself. This is a great prayer for us to pray as well. I found something he also said about prayer from this website.

Here is what I thought was good and true:

St. Augustine on Prayer

According to St. Augustine, we need not pray for what we need because God already knows what we need before we even ask. Instead, we ought to pray, he suggests, to increase our desire for God, and so that we might be able to receive what He is preparing to give us.

“The deeper our faith, the stronger our hope, the greater our desire, the larger will be our capacity to receive the gift, which is very great indeed. …. The more fervent the desire, the more worthy will be its fruits. When the Apostle tells us: Pray without ceasing (1 Thes5:16), he means this: Desire unceasingly that life of happiness which is nothing if not eternal, and ask it of him alone who is able to give it.”
(Letter 130)

Trail to the Tree

The scripture reading is about when Jesus was on the cross and He was in total separation from God and asked, ” Why have You forsaken Me?”

Ann says: Today, repent. Name the ugly sins that crucified Him. Write down your idols and angry heart, your lies, your gossip, your envy and pride. See what caused His stripes. Nail the paper to a tree. Die to the old you. Feel His wounds. Touch His pain. Be washed in His blood.

Are you prepared to be crucified with Christ?

When I was first saved I watched Jesus of Nazareth, The Gospel of John and The Passion of The Christ many times even after my salvation experience with The Gospel of John. I wanted to understand everything Jesus said and did so much. One thing that hit me during one of the times watching was the darkness that fell when He was on the cross. I didn’t understand His words for awhile but one day I heard Him say, ” Why have You forsaken Me?” and I realized God was away from Him for the first time in His life. The darkness was what Jesus felt because He was dying for all the sins of humanity. God being sinless cannot be in the presence of sin.  Jesus was experiencing what it’s like to be out of God’s presence. He knows the hell that comes from the absence of God. Anyone who has not received Jesus’ sacrifice is in this “hell”. I was there, I know what it’s like. I described it in my journal as a long dark tunnel and at the time I only saw glimmers of light. I felt hell in my mind. It’s hard to explain unless you have experienced it but when I saw Jesus on the cross in darkness, I knew God left Him. I knew Jesus felt what we feel. He is a Savior who can relate to our sufferings as it says in Hebrews 2:18,  Because He Himself [in His humanity] has suffered in being tempted, He is able to help and provide immediate assistance to those who are being tempted and exposed to suffering.

This is why prayer is so important. It connects us to God. When we aren’t connecting we feel a sadness, an emptiness inside, we feel forsaken. We think it’s a void to be filled with things but I have learned true fufillment is in God’s presence. I have also learned something else the past couple days about prayer. The Holy Spirit has revealed to me that when I pray for something like protection, I have been saying, protect me in this car, protect my kids at school. These are 2 examples that He has shown me where the prayers are fearful, they aren’t based in trust. I realized this when I read in my Jesus Calling book to trust Jesus deeply. I also paid attention to how I feel when I say, ” Protect us in this car.” There is a level of fear there. But when I say,” I trust You, Jesus. Thank you for getting us there safe.” Even before we have arrived if I pray this, I’m trusting Jesus to do what He said He would do. He said He would never leave us. When I say this prayer I feel a sense of relief and comfort. The first prayer is living in darkness, the second prayer is living in the light. God is pleased with our faith and trust. He knows we really believe when our prayer reflects this to Him. I pray for the Holy Spirit to show me when my prayers are fearful and to help me change them into trust, Amen.

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