Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Can you dance in the rain?

Storm while at sea
My last few posts I talked a little about the struggles we've been going through.  I've wondered if the rain will ever end.  It seems that we'll have few days of sunshine and then the storm comes again.  I had a dream a few months ago about being on a cruise ship that ran aground.  Yes, it was before the Costa shipwreck happened.  In my dream Charlie and I were up on the Lido deck as the boat was turning over, but we were right at a part of the Lido deck that was covered.  (if you've been on a cruise ship then you know the Lido deck is usually half covered/half open). Charlie was thrown from the ship into the water and I was hanging on to a railing.  The water started rising and I was stretched out as far as I could go still hanging on to the railing but trying to breath.  I was scared to death I was going to drown.  Charlie was able to swim back to me and he said "Krista it's going to be okay.  Just don't let go of me."  He said "We have to swim down under this water and over the railings.  Then we'll be out in the open water and we'll be okay."  I woke up and I knew that life was going to get really bad but that if we stayed together then we'd be okay. 

Last Wednesday afternoon Charlie was laid off from his job.  He had an awesome job that we have been very thankful for.  It was very unexpected as two other people have been hired since he was but we know God controls it all.  Now we are both laid off and we don't really know what we are going to do.  Charlie has already started looking for other opportunities and a couple may turn out to be good.  The only thing I know to do is trust in the Lord. 

I'm still going to do what I said I do last week.  As long as the Lord gives me strength you'll find me praising Him!  I know that he'll make this a blessing.  I'm not sure how and I'm not sure when but he will.  We may have to swim down into the murky water but we will come back up again.  Then we'll be in the open waters and be able to swim freely! 

My Mother used to tell us when we were younger to go ahead and Thank God for what he's going to do.  So that's what I'm going to do.  I'm going to Thank Him and I'm going to Praise Him.  If I know my God then our end will be better than the beginning.  Worrying is human nature but I am going to do my best to let God handle this one.  It is beyond my control anyway! 

Praise His Name
By Jeff & Sherri Easter

When you're up against a wall
And your mountain seems so tall
And you realize that life's not always fair
You can run away and hide
Let the old man decide
Or you can change your circumstances with a prayer

When everything falls apart
Praise his name
When you have a broken heart
Raise your hands and say
Lord, you're all I need
You're everything to me
And he'll take the pain away
When you feel you're all alone
Praise his name
And you feel all hope is gone
Raise your hands and say
Greater is he that is within me
And you can praise the hurt away
If you'll just praise his name

You can overcome
By the blood of the lamb
And by the word of your testimony
You'll see the darkness go
As your faith begins to grow
You're not alone, so how can you be lonely

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Praising God

Sunset over the Rocky Mountains on January 4th (courtesy of Izzy B)
Last week I began a new morning tradition that was shared with me by Abby over at Feathered Nest.  It is called Magical Mornings and she was kind enough to share a printable with all of us.  Anyway back to the point of Praising God... On her 'things to do every morning' is to spend a few minutes with your scriptures journal.  In place of a scriptures journal I use my devotionals that I receive via email from my old work friends. 

Today I received a devotional that I'd like to share with all of you.  It reminded me of a situation that I had last Thursday.  I was almost at the end of my rope and while making dinner I stopped up the garbage disposal.  Who knew that putting potato peels in it would make mashed potatoes in the drain? I'm sure many of you know that but not me.  I have made it my personal duty to share this with the world! Anyway I became so frustrated that I just began to pray and talk to the Lord.  My husband kind of snickered at me.  I mean who prays about a stopped up sink? I guess on that day I didn't find anything too small to ask the Lord.  I knew that we couldn't afford to call a plumber so somehow or another this drain would have to flow freely.  So, I'd plunge awhile then I'd pray awhile.  Finally after about 3 hours, mind you I took breaks now and again, the drain ran free!  I took a few minutes to Praise the Lord and then called my entire family to tell them about how it was fixed.  It's the little things that make me happy! 

From Immanuel Baptist Church, 1/15/2012 AM sermon by Doug Hayes (excerpt and paraphrased)
1 Corinthians 10:31
Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God.
Doug Hayes has a lot of kids and was talking about how several times during the last few weeks he's had to unstop the toilet, but strangely no kid has ever been responsible for stopping it up. He was rather frustrated when he came home to work on his sermon for Sunday (he was filling in for our regular pastor) and found the commode stopped up again. The LORD gave him 1 Corinthians 10:31-33 for his sermon, and after he had prepared his notes and went to unstop the commode, he felt the conviction from verse 31. He said it may seem strange to be singing a song of praise as you plunge the commode, but it's hard to stay irritated when you are praising the LORD.

We are called as Christians to give every activity to the LORD. You can have joy if the LORD is in everything you do. Turn it all over to Him. The world doesn't need to see Christians acting like the lost. They need to see love and joy, to see what they want to have in their own life. The world bases happiness on status, abilities, possessions--their own significance. Christians should base their happiness on Christ…the true joy that never changes. Christians should have their significance in Him--true significance.

Find joy in the journey of living out our Christian life -- every task, every single task!

…to use a line from Finding Nemo, with a slight variation: Keep on singing, singing, singing.
So you see this devotional affirmed my need to Praise the Lord even while plunging a stopped up sink!  I hope you all have a blessed day.


Monday, January 23, 2012

What a Difference a Day Makes

Or should I say a weekend?  I had the opportunity to visit a church on Friday & Saturday night in Newport TN.  My brother-in-law and his father were holding a revival there.  Then on Sunday morning & Sunday night I was in service at our home church in Claxton TN.  Needless to say it was just what I needed.  It seemed like from Friday night until Sunday night each message built on top of the other giving me strength. 

God is always good!  When we feel we can't go on all we have to do is ask and he is there.  In the valleys and on the mountains he takes care of my every need.  I always want to praise him for blessing me! 

I sang a song last night at church that tells the story of my heart.  It's an old song that I've heard most all of my life.

"Jesus is with me, He's helping me stand. He's making my pathways seem bright. He's driving the darkness back out of my way and making my burdens seem light."

Friday, January 20, 2012

Walking on water

Do you ever feel like you are drowning? Literally like you are almost out of air and there is no way possible to take a breath. Today, I feel that way. I can see the water all around me. I can hear the storm with the waves so boisterous. I can feel the pressure on my chest that seems unrelenting.

I sit hear thinking why do I feel this way today? What has happened that makes me feel like hope is almost unattainable? I can honestly say nothing drastic has happened. Many things have happened over the last few years to make me feel distressed. Most days I feel like my head is barely above the water but I can still breath. Today the waves have pushed me under.

Fortunately I am a positive person and I am a Christian therefore I know that Jesus will come to my rescue. As I was typing I was reminded of the place in the Bible where Peter got out of the boat and walked to Jesus. Yes he walked, but he became distracted by the storm & the boisterous waves and he began to sink. He called out for help and Jesus saved him. I am depending on Jesus coming to my rescue today and giving me peace of mind. He can give me that much needed breath of life.

- Blessings

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Get back in the swing

of things.

I've recently been laid off from work so I am now officially a stay at home wife/mom. Not sure I can claim 'recently' since it happened November 30th. December was easy because we were so busy with the holidays. Both church & personal events kept me super busy, but then January arrived. Everything I wanted to do overwhelmed me. I had put off so many things until January that I just don't know where to begin. Today it is January 19th and I don't know what I've accomplished. Oh, my house is clean and my laundry is done. Dinner is made every night. I wake up every morning with my hubby to make his breakfast & lunch. However I just can't get into the swing of this. I look at the mountains of things I want to accomplish and I feel like I can't climb over them.

I do better with a plan so I started planning my days with my Franklin Covey and that seemed to help but not for long. Then I remembered Fly Lady from when I wasn't working before and tried to do follow the plan. Cleaning just isn't my problem, and yes, I have plenty to do. My children are self-sufficient, as they should be since they are both in college. From time to time they'll ask me to help them with something but usually I very rarely even see them. They are extremely busy with work & school. Charlie is happy as long as he has breakfast, lunch & dinner, all his clothes are in the closet where he can find them easily and the house is clean. Well, all those things are done and still I feel like I am stumbling along.

This afternoon I found a wonderful post from Abby over at a Feathered Nest. (For some reason blogger won't let me link to her blog) but in this post she talked about getting her groove on. She created and shared a printable for a to-do list and on the top was Prayer. Can you believe I have been leaving this off my to-do list? I talk to the Lord throughout the day, read devotionals, and spend a lot of time meditating on His Word. However, I think I need to go back to the basics and start my day on my knees.

Pray for me that I'll get back into the swing of things.