Psalm 22

All my life, I have been told that the word Gospel translates “good news”, when a lot of what I was taught afterwards was anything but good news.  I am having my world rocked nowadays and I am honestly loving it.  I am blissfully and truly seeing the Gospel as scandalously, amazingly too good but true, news.  I feel a very different but remarkable sense of freedom as I now read the Bible through this new lens of God truly being good.  Even the tough parts, I am able to see differently and what I don’t understand, I ask Abba to help me with that, and I believe He will.

I am reading one of my required books for seminary called Cosmos Reborn by John Crowder. It is amazing.  I had to stop reading it to write this post because I am so excited about what I am learning.  Bare with me as I share my excitement and tell you things you may already know.  I have actually gone back and forth, tempering my feelings about my theological journey as I am now seeing things in ways that are at times in opposition with the beliefs of my loved ones.  It is important to me to keep connections strong, but as an old song that comes to mind implies, I can’t keep it all to myself! 🙂

One thing among so much that I see differently, is the idea that God turned His back on Jesus while he was on the cross because of what Jesus said in Matthew 27:46 (My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?”)  I was taught that it was at this point that God, who cannot even look upon sin, turned His back on His son Jesus who became sin for us.  A side note from this idea- if we are so awful and filled with sin, such that God can’t look at us, how is it that we come to Him at all? How would we be able to even face Him enough to accept Jesus’ sacrifice if He couldn’t look upon us? How could we even survive without His constant gaze upon us?  So many thoughts and questions come to mind… Ok, back to the topic at hand.

Not only do I now believe that Jesus, in that moment was identifying with what we feel and experience when we sin, (I mean really, who sins and wants to run straight to God without feeling crazy?) but it was so much more than just his identifying with us in that moment.  Jesus, in that moment was making a big statement, a statement that every Messianic person watching him hang on the cross understood clearly in that moment.

It is my understanding that during that time, they often sang the Psalms of David in synagogue.  Not too many years back, I heard and was surprised to learn that King David is counted among the prophets of the Old Testament. I totally see why, now.

If anyone was to recite the start of the lyrics of a popular song, you’d likely pick up on it and end up singing it too.  That happens often. That’s what Jesus did.  He recited the start of a Psalm they all likely knew, and it very likely blew some minds as he did, because the Psalm was about him and described very accurately (and probably eerily) what he was experiencing right there in that moment, on the cross.

Read Psalm 22  here. I can only imagine how floored they were in that moment of realization.  The song mentioned his thirst, his dislocated bones, his blood poured out, how he didn’t even look like a man anymore.  It mentioned the mocking, the gambling of his clothes and then, in verse 24, it says the Father did not look away, but was there all the time! Wow!!!  Can you imagine?  It reminds me of how Jesus went to synagogue, stood before them and quoted Isaiah 61:1 and then said, “This Scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing today.” Boom!!! (Mic drop) He was essentially and effectively doing that again, on the cross!!! Amazing!

It was always said that the Gospel was offensive.  I see this from a different perspective now too.  It is most certainly offensive, but not quite in the way that I first thought of it.  Think about it, who in the Bible seemed to stay mad  and offended at Jesus? The religious folk.  It was the Pharisee’s who were often angered because Jesus chose to hang out with tax collectors and prostitutes. Forgive my silliness, but the reality is, them hoes loved Jesus. They loved him so much, and he them, that they didn’t want to whore no more. It was the ones who looked down on others that were offended.  The very ones who just knew they were right and everyone else was wrong and should follow them.  They felt Jesus should act like and hang with them.  He should have been the first to sock that prostitute in the head with a rock when she was caught in the act of adultery. How dare Jesus let her go?  They were the ones who were mad, offended and wanted to kill him. The Good News irked their religious nerves. Jesus was there for them too but they didn’t believe it. They were too entrenched in law to see Love.

This all just blows my mind and screams, “Good News”! I love it!!!  The Gospel is changing me in the very best way.  I look forward to seeing my Abba more and more clearly and correctly.  Jesus embodied the Father. He is good.  That, my friends, is the Gospel.

On the Subject of Perfection

I am a heretic.  I embody the definition of a heretic.  I am a nonconformist, a freethinker.  I am a person holding an opinion at odds with what is generally accepted (on many fronts in life) and,  I believe you are perfect.

Once, while at a conference with John Crowder, he said to look at your neighbor and say something “scandalous”.  I turned to my gorgeous neighbor and without thinking, I gave her the biggest smile I could, and blurted out, “You are perfect!”  She smiled and we moved on.  On one hand, I don’t tend to take myself too seriously.  There are times though, when I blurt things out without thinking, I know it’s not just me talking, it’s a God breathed Word.  Those moments of foreshadowing are put on a shelf for later review and that “reviewing” is always amazing and transformative.

As usual, the Lord soon highlighted His Word to me in Colossians 1:21-22.  In the Mirror Translation it says in verse 21, “Your indifferent mindset alienated you from God into a lifestyle of annoyances, hardships, and labors.  Yet he has now fully reconciled and restored you to your original design. 22 He accomplished this in dying our death in a human body; he fully represented us in order to fully present us again in blameless innocence, face-to-face with God; with no sense of guilt, suspicion, regret, or accusation; all charges against us are officially canceled.”

Let’s look at these same verses in The Passion Translation, 21, “Even though you were once distant from him, living in the shadows of your evil thoughts and actions, he reconnected you back to himself.  He released his supernatural peace to you through the sacrifice of his own body as the sin-payment on your behalf so that you would dwell in his presence.  And now there is nothing between you and Father God, for he sees you as holy, flawless, and restored.”

There is a prevailing thought process (that I don’t understand) within the Body, that is in conflict with itself.  You are imperfect, struggling daily with a sin nature whether that sin is yours or some ancestors, but somehow, you are to not only run into His courts with thanksgiving and praise, but you are to also do greater works than Jesus himself did.  How does this work when we see ourselves far beneath how our Heavenly Father sees us?  Why do we make this all so difficult?

I looked up that “problem word” ‘perfect’.  It means having all the required, or desirable elements, qualities, or characteristics; as good as it is possible to be. It means absolute, complete, faultless, flawless, etc. Sounds like you to me.  It also sounds a whole lot like Colossians 1:22 .  What part of you was left out of the equation when Jesus sacrificed his life and declared, “It is finished!”?  In Revelation 13:8, The Complete Jewish translation speaks about the Lamb who was slaughtered before the world was founded.  If Jesus came to take away the sin of the world as John the Baptist stated, and he did so before the world was even founded, in that sense, did you even come here with a sin nature to begin with or is there a greater Truth (Jesus)?  Where were you before the world was founded? Now, I am not saying that I am a Universalist who believes all are automatically saved. I just know I was taught that until I invited Jesus into my heart, I indeed had a sin nature that needed to be taken care of, and I could take care of it myself, by accepting Jesus.  All I had to do was invite him in because Jesus was far, far away from me and my sin.  I was taught that until one invited Jesus in, they had no semblance of God in them at all.

I now understand that Jesus was already in my heart, he is all, in all.  I can’t even take a breath without his input.  He was already in my heart, wooing me to wake up to the realization of all he already accomplished for me.  He was and still is awakening me to all that I am, have and can do, because of what he did.  I couldn’t “invite” someone in that I didn’t know was even there.  He had to help me with that too.  It’s all a gift that I accept.  He didn’t suddenly take up residence in my heart and life when I walked down an aisle or filled out a slip of paper or said a prayer.  He was always there. I just didn’t know it.  He did it all.

In considering what the problem could be, I can only point to “the flesh” and our free will as what trips many up.  The flesh is often seen as problematic in Christian circles when, not only is the flesh itself not bad, but just to drive the point home, Jesus came in the flesh and died in the flesh to make sure we knew our flesh is in good standing with him too.  He is so genius that he used our free will in his ultimate plan to die for us, showing us just how far he was willing to go to show us that we are included, loved, wanted and accepted.  He knew we’d use our free will to literally kill him and he walked into that willingly, and powerfully.

Our free will wasn’t a problem for Abba. He isn’t afraid of our ability to choose. It’s only a problem for us.  He wasn’t kidding when He said He’d work all things together for the good of those who love Him and are called according to His purpose.  You are amazing.  You are magnificent.  You are loved.  You are perfect.  It’s time to start to see yourself as He does, beloved.  Be free.

 

Random Cohesive (Maybe not) Thoughts

So much is happening. I am processing several things at once and I find it’s not always easy to write or even speak in a cohesive manner.   Typically, when I think of my thoughts as random, lacking any semblance of cohesion, they actually make sense, so, it is with this possibility in mind, that I push onward and write.

When people find out that I have 5 homeschooled children, they are often astonished and make remarks about me being super busy or some other, (weird) comment is stated.  I don’t feel any busier than anyone else honestly, and up until now, I have not had many real issues that had to do with my children.  The issue I have now, I know is temporary and it has to do with helping my son not flip out to the point of crying and not breathing until he passes out.  He’s only a year old, so reasoning with him isn’t an option.  It’s pretty much, try to distract him and if that doesn’t work, just hold him so that he doesn’t hurt himself when he passes out.  Not the most fun.  Thankfully, this, as most other things, will pass.  In the meantime, it is sometimes rough.

I am seeing an unnerving trend in the Body of Christ that sets my teeth on edge and has all my discernment receptors blaring warning signals.  In a nutshell, it is a trend of facing and focusing on problems, instead of simply asking Abba, what’s going on in those moments of confusion.  There’s a place for asking questions, wanting and getting answers, but there’s also a place for mystery.  Holy Spirit can help us know the difference.  Sometimes our prayers can even be so fear and lack based, it’s disheartening.  It implies that we are better moral agents than God, because we’d never allow certain things with our own children.  It’s so subtle, this deception…

Sometimes, I think we are so afraid of the free will God insisted on giving us, that we make up doctrine to support our religious do this, and do that. Proverbs 23:7 (As a man thinks in his heart, so is he) keeps replaying in my heart and mind.  We really do become our own self fulfilling prophecy because we are believing stupid things.

There are a few other things on my mind these days, like the deaths of people who were clearly not wanting to be here any longer.  Death is never easy. By the time I was 37 years old, I had experienced the deaths of two grandparents, my step father, my father and 3 siblings, with the closest of them passing on my birthday.  I have seen enough death up close, to last me a lifetime.  I have held the hands of loved ones as they passed. I’ve held babies who left their bodies prior to or right after being born.  I could go on but I won’t.  I have seen those who seemed to be taken before they finished what they were here to do, and while I do believe people can and do go before their time, I also believe free will can be a factor, and so can mystery.  Sometimes, things just don’t make sense (to me).  I am learning to be ok with that.

I was thinking yesterday how many die with this or that unfulfilled prophecy over their lives, but then, I started to consider why we are here to begin with.  God didn’t want workers, he has angels for that.  He wanted a family to love.  At its core, this is all about relationship.  It’s a family affair.  If the main goal is to be loved by Him and love others, I can’t think of any of my loved ones who did not fulfill that purpose, no matter when they died.  Every single person I can think of, especially those who have passed within the last year, loved so very many people.  They truly left beautiful legacies and they still live!!!  I am re-thinking so many things.  We get so caught up with the do-do’s.  We must do this for the Kingdom, we must do that for the Kingdom, when God simply wanted a family. It all reminds me of Jesus telling Martha, “One thing is needed…” (see Luke 10:38-42).

I heard a story once that I don’t fully remember and will add to.  A man invited his son to come work with him in his wood shop.  His son worked very hard, trying to replicate the quality of  his dad’s work.  He loved his father and wanted to make him proud.  Try as he might, he just couldn’t get his work to the quality that his dad so easily seemed to produce.  The son quickly became frustrated and angry.  What the son didn’t realize was that his father had him there because he simply wanted to spend time with him.  He didn’t need his son’s help, he really just wanted his company.  He was already proud of him and just wanted to be together making memories.  This is what I believe the Gospel really is, the good news that we have all, already been included.  We start out loved, wanted, accepted, celebrated, etc.  Anything we do from there, comes from a place of resting in that love, acceptance, celebration with our Heavenly Father.  That’s it.

The type of things I have been witnessing, if I were a new  prospective convert, I’d want to run the other way.  What I am seeing is not good news. I can strive without awareness of God and all He has done, I don’t need to do it with Him.  It’s unnecessary.

Rob Coscia summed up my feelings about so much of this beautifully. Why focus on the problem when you have The Answer?

I’ll end with Rob’s quote, “When you pay more attention to what could go wrong rather than to what could go right, failure becomes your unconscious goal.

When you study more of what the enemy has done instead of looking for what God is doing, fear becomes your internal theology.”

 

 

 

Brutally Honest?

I recently had a video chat conversation with two people where one was desperate in wanting to help the other.  She was frustrated and tired of seeing the other person so beat down and living below her potential.  In a sort of last ditch effort to help, she resorted to being brutally honest with the other person about her behavior, appearance and more.  It was harsh, to say the least.

I listened to what was said and took into account both sides, the one desperate to see change in a person she loves, and the one who was down and out. (I quickly broke the whole “brutal honesty” issue down to them both and we came to an agreement in the end.)

See, when one resorts to brutal honesty, there’s a shock value effect that one seems to be striving for in hopes that the shock will then render a positive result in the other person. All too often though, the whole plan is shot because instead of tough love, instead of honesty, what the other person hears and feels, is the brutality.

Looking at the definition and a few synonyms of the word brutal, sheds a bright light on how unhelpful this “mode of communication” can be when trying to bring about positive change.  Brutal means, savagely violent, punishingly hard or uncomfortable.  It also means direct and lacking any attempt to disguise unpleasantness.  A few synonyms include: savage, cruel, vicious, ruthless, heartless, cold-blooded, unsparing, stark, naked, etc.

Now here’s the thing, I am a pretty straightforward person, but, I take care in how I speak to and with people.  I am honest but I will not be brutally so because I want to be heard and understood.  I don’t want to beat anyone up with my words and most importantly, I don’t want to sever the connection I have with anyone.  Connection is more important than being correct.  I don’t get any bonus points for being honest when I ruin a relationship.  I want to take care with the hearts of those I claim to hold dear.

Later, the person who was on the receiving end of the brutal honesty, not so shockingly stated that she feels people have their foot on her neck, all while telling her to rise up.  She feels beat up and/or ignored by everyone close to her.  This is a person in need of some massive amounts of love, not brutal honesty.

In moments like this, I am grateful that I have been trained to not prophesy the obvious, bringing up people’s dirt.  Instead, we are to reach into each person, and pull out the gold that’s there already inside of them.  This is far more effective when the goal is to help a person rise to their greatest potential.

Interestingly, as I chimed in about my take on brutal honesty, I started by saying that I didn’t believe it was good to be brutally honest with others.  I said I would only be honest with others but not brutally so, and that I would save the brutal honesty for myself.  Just as the words left my lips, I heard my Abba say to me, “And why would you even treat yourself that way?”  I stopped as the realization hit me that brutal honesty isn’t for anyone.  Sure, be honest, but brutal? No. We really have to get this right and help build one another up instead of tearing each other and ourselves down.  It serves no one to be cruel, yet so many of us are our own worst enemy.  This must stop.  We must allow the Lord to show us who we are and believe Him.

So, if you were once one who ascribed to the idea of being brutally honest as if it was a good way to conduct yourself, please, don’t do that anymore.  Don’t do it to others, and don’t do it to yourself.  Let’s learn new and effective ways to broach the hard subjects with one another.  We have help.  He longs to show us how to be in relationship with each other in ways that make it such that everyone involved feels edified, loved and encouraged.  Everybody can win.

Culture of Honor

Where love languages are concerned, I always tie between two- acts of service and quality time.  I cannot choose one over the other.  Coming alongside me to help and chat with me as I wash dishes screams love.

In Dr. Gary Chapman’s book, The Five Love Languages, it is noted that most often, people love others based on their own love language(s).  I know this is true for me because I am very often seeking to do something for someone and spend time with loved ones. It fills me to overflowing.

I am naturally a romantic, mushy, sappy type.  I love that too and at times crave that kind of experience to be directed my way, but I don’t always get it.  Rather than complain and constantly feel sorry for myself over it, I seek ways to teach my husband and children how to love me the way that most directly and clearly speaks to my heart.  We are in such a moment in time these days.

Around Valentine’s Day, in 2017, I decided to get sappy and romantic with my family.  From February 1st thru the 14th, I wrote each of them something that I love about them.  I enjoyed doing it and had no problem at all coming up with something for 14 days. This is just one example of the types of things I do to love my family and show them I am thinking of them and care. As much fun as I had doing it, I realized a few days ago, lol, that not one of them thought to reciprocate.

I realized that while it comes easily to me to honor those dear to me, it isn’t so for everyone, and because I want to raise thoughtful children, I brought this to their attention.  In as loving a way as possible, I discussed the importance of honoring others and admitted that there are and have been times when I have felt that I was “for them” and they were for themselves as well, leaving me out of the equation.  I told them that I would like to change that and teach them to be more aware of others, especially those closest to them.  I mean really, don’t cry, slob and snot if something happens to me and tell me how much you love and care for me then, tell me and show me now!

In trying to think of ways to help my family, Abba gave me a wonderful idea that I call, Culture of Honor.  There are seven in my household and seven days in a week, so for now, once a month (for one week), we are honoring each person in various ways.

I am enjoying seeing how they are choosing to show honor to one another. One child took over washing dishes another was doing.  One made another’s bed, bought another their favorite thing from the store, etc., many acts of kindness have taken place this week.  My prayer is that this will teach them to remember others and the important roles they play in our lives, and, honor them for it.

All too often, we get comfortable with those closest to us, so much so, that we completely take them for granted.  I don’t want to do this or be treated like this and I don’t want my children to do it either. So, we are seeking to change this and make some wonderful memories while we’re at it. People are very happy with how others are choosing to honor them and there’s a sense of excitement when thinking of what to do for others as well. We also plan to choose others outside our household to honor.  It will be fun to surprise people and honor them.  I am very grateful that instead of stewing in anger, resentment, and self pity, my Abba gave me a solution- Culture of Honor.  Who could you choose to catch off guard and honor today? Go for it, and tell me about it!

 

Who Do You Say I Am?

Recently, I drove along with my children, basically preaching to them about their identity in Christ.  We’d heard some things that were a bit off and I wanted to clear it up right quick and set them on a different path than what was proposed.

I believe this is a time where we who say we believe, really need to get to the business of believing God.  We know the Bible verses that say we are a royal priesthood. We boldly declare that we are more than conquerors; we are the head, not the tail; we are above only, never beneath.  We quote that we are the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus.  We know these things by heart, but do we believe them?

I remember a song I heard growing up that I thought was kind of a cute play on words at the time.  The lyrics went, “I’m just a nobody, trying to tell everybody, about somebody who can save anybody.”  I couldn’t forget that song if I tried.  I also remember a song that started out with “I’m only human, I’m just a man…”  These songs are stupid.  They diminish our identity in a very crafty way and keep us from truly believing we are who God says we are.

Consider this, in John 14:12, Jesus said that we who believe will do what he did and greater.  How can one who sees themselves less than who God says they are, set themselves to do anything?  We are to heal the sick, raise the dead, cast out demons and more, but if we are running around, talking about how we’re only human, prone to mistakes, how can we do anything?  If we feel we are nothing, nobodies, etc, how do we take that mindset over to the sister or brother who is struggling with addiction and in need of a touch from God, and heal them?  Jesus didn’t say to pray for healing for others.  He instructed us to heal them. How does one heal anyone when they see themselves so low?

We must remedy this awful perception of ourselves.  It isn’t humble or cute or even true.  It’s religious nonsense that I believe comes straight from the pit of hell.  We need to spend time in God’s presence, asking Him to pour into us.  We need to allow His perception of us to become ours.  We need to see ourselves for who we truly are and move in that knowledge.  We need to get away from this pitiful, self deprecating way of seeing ourselves and others. It isn’t right and we won’t get anywhere with this mindset.

God is merciful in that He meets us right where we are, so I don’t pretend to speak for Him when I say that am so tired of hearing people in church services and events, inviting Holy Spirit to come as if He left and needed someone to call Him back.  I am tired of hearing this pitiful, “More of you God, less of me!” cry.  I guarantee, He is very secure in who He is.  You are here beloved, because He wants you!  He thinks you are the bees knees and wants you here.  He doesn’t have any problem at all with you, your disposition or your idiosyncrasies.  He loves you, deeply.

Also, He never held back anything from us.  He literally gave us His all, and just to be sure, there is nothing left out of all.  He gave us everything, so why do we keep crying out for more of Him?  What part of Himself did He withhold from us?  Was it His right pointer finger that He held behind His back? My goodness!  Jesus said it is finished, yet we find so much to do in order to obtain this or that, not realizing that we are completely bypassing the finished work of Christ in favor of some thing we (the little old nobody human, prone to mistakes and folly) must do in order to fix things so that we can get something that God forgot or left out of the equation.  If this is the case, why did Jesus die?  Why did he say, “It is finished!”?  Did he lie?  Was there some little caveat that is in fine print that some have missed?

All that to say, get in His presence dear one.  Stay there.  Be ever and always aware of Him and allow Him to love on you and fill you with His truth, the truth, about you.  You are more powerful than you think.  You are more magnificent than you realize.  Let Him tell you and show you.  Allow Him to blow your mind and rid you completely of all the enemies lies about you.  You are not your family history, prone to this sickness, disease or that.  You are not merely human.  You are His, made in His image, His likeness.  Will you believe Him?  Ask Him, “Lord, who do You say I am?”.

Who’s Speaking?

This blog post comes in response to one of my dear readers, Selah Vita. Both Selah Vita and God have recently brought up the conundrum many of us find ourselves in when we “hear” something. We wonder, “Is it me? Is it God, or is it the devil?” I thought I’d share my thought process on this confusion, in hopes of helping someone.

The easiest one for me to knock out quickly is the enemy speaking. In John 10:10, Jesus said that the thief comes only to steal, kill and destroy. So, if what I am hearing goes along those lines in some way, or makes me feel guilt ridden, condemned or some other horrible emotion, that’s very likely not God and is most likely inspired by the enemy. Romans 8:1 says there is no therefore no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus. There’s so many verses that speak to the character of the enemy that once you have that knowledge, it isn’t so difficult to discern the tricks of the enemy.

The same is true for Abba. When you know His character, it’s easier to discern when He is the one speaking to you or even through you. One cliche that rings true is that God is good all the time. He truly is good. He is all, in all. He is good. He is love. He is peace. He is life. You get the picture. One habit I picked up several years back, is that I literally blame every good thing that happens on God. This one habit ends up having a ripple effect that is amazing. Something good happens, I give Him the credit for it which makes me more grateful, joyful, happy, etc. Then, it causes me to be on the lookout for more evidence of Him, which makes me more tuned into Him, which makes me see even more of Him, and on and on. He is literally all over the place, in all the details.

While away on vacation, we visited a Trader Joe’s store. A clerk with a gorgeously wild, red, curly mane gave my children a bag filled with lollipops and me a free reusable Florida bag. I blamed God. Like most children, I have 2 in particular, who are crazy about Trader Joe’s lollipops and I happen to be just as crazy about reusable bags. The man didn’t know this, but God does, and, that man offered himself to God (whether he knew it or not) to be used to love on us with things we enjoy while away. It’s like kisses and hugs from God, reminding us of His everlasting presence.

So again, I blame every good thing that happens on God. That gets me to the “suddenlies” that occur. When I am looking for something and suddenly envision where I last put it and find it. When I suddenly have a thought or idea that follows no logical thought pattern that I had going- it’s typically God. When I, a staunch believer in not just homeschooling, but unschooling, got a thought about a nearby trade school and my middle daughter, no question, that was God, lol. I even said to Him aloud, “Ok. I will check it out.” Only He could have orchestrated that and known that my girl, who has never attended school, would be excited to go, even if it’s only 2 hours a day.

Sometimes, there’s a feeling that goes along with Him speaking. There are times I hear Him and feel compelled to do or say something. Other times, I feel a sense of excitement, joy, or even negative emotions another person feels. This is the way He has me relate and open conversations with others at times. I have felt the impact of accidents I wasn’t involved in- not with the pain included, just the shock of it all and the knowledge of the vehicles involved, things like that. This has happened several times and each time, I would begin to pray in tongues and would eventually find out exactly who I was praying for and how they miraculously came through the accident unscathed. I like to call that, Holy Intel. There’s so much I could say!! God is so creative and exciting. He speaks in so many ways and uses literally anything. We have but to be tuned in.

The last one, “Is it just me?” can be easy at times and tricky at other times but because God is good, I trust Him to give me a good old stop sign if I am heading in the wrong direction. One such time was when my husband and I felt it was time to move from New Jersey, back down to Florida, where we married and started our family. We were so excited to head back down there, we prayed, and had it on our family vision board. We marveled at how often we saw Florida tags while driving along in New York and New Jersey. My husband put in for transfers to several locations in the state of Florida. We just knew it was time to go. We even packed some things in boxes in our garage as evidence of our faith to move back to Florida. Basically, God said, “Not yet.” Because of the connections my husband has and more, the move should have been super easy and smooth. We should have had the “problem” of having to choose which location we wanted to accept in Florida, but God closed every single door and you know what? We are eternally grateful. We needed to remain here and make the connections we now have which are so vitally important to us and even in the Kingdom of God. We may still head to Florida someday, but we are quite happy to be here at this time, because we know it’s where we belong. It’s where God wants us.

In this example, where it clearly was not God’s idea for us to move, we lost nothing. We operated out of faith and did many things that are very positive and hope building and more. I say that to say, don’t let fear of “Is it just me?” stop you from stepping out in faith. Move forward knowing God is with you and will help you. We learned a lot of things that God would use later, so even in getting it “wrong”, a lot of good came out of it.

There’s also times when it’s obvious that a thought is so not God. Thoughts that are selfish, rude, mean, etc. Again, there’s so much that can be said, but I don’t want to write too much here. As always, you can also simply ask the Lord to help you to better discern where thoughts are coming from. He is more than happy to help because as stated before, He is good!

Oh! Before I forget! To my dear Selah Vita, this is your year honey. I know the New Year has come and gone but this is a new beginning for you. I believe you have lots of surprises in store for you this year. Some things that you have thought about and wanted, and others that weren’t even on your radar, all coming your way, this year. I also believe this year you are receiving what I can only reference as a tune up to tune in, to Him. You will find that by the end of this year, you have less and less of an issue discerning exactly where thoughts, ideas and phrases are coming from. Write, Selah Vita! Write down those thoughts and dreams and visions you are getting. They all mean something. In fact, some of the guessing will be addressed and answered in dreams, so write these things down. You are building a log book of faith, lol. You will have all these instances and situations that you can look back on and see how very much our Abba loves and speaks to you and through you. Have fun with this and pass on what you learn!! You have so much to teach and offer others. Love you!