Saturday, September 30, 2017

Negative Nuggets

And it shall come to pass, as soon as the soles of the feet of the priests who bear the ark of the Lord, the Lord of all the earth, shall rest in the waters of the Jordan, that the waters of the Jordan shall be cut off, the waters that come down from upstream, and they shall stand as a heap.” Joshua 3:13

There is always someone in our families, in our church and in our community that carries the mother load of "negative nuggets" for anyone who will take time to listen. We have to purposefully keep those negative messages from our ears so that we do not make decisions in our life because of them.

I have seen my family, my church and my country suffer because of all the "negative nuggets" that have been allowed to infiltrate those who want to hear. 40 years prior to the scripture written above there were those who spread their "negative nuggets" to the Israeli people. They believed those who spread the negativity more than the God who had removed them from Egypt and helped them to cross the Red Sea. Because they chose to listen they were not able to enter the Promised Land for another 40 years.

Before we judge the carelessness of the Israeli people let's remember that we ourselves have done much the same thing. We believe the one's who spread rumors or those who are mean to others with their words more than those who are pure at heart. We have many times missed the blessings from God because of those we choose to listen to instead of the Holy Spirit within us or the Word of God. 

The Israeli people were sent the direction of the Jordan River to get to the Promised Land and God once again removed the water so they could cross on dry land. How many Jordan Rivers in our life have we come to where we choose to believe the negativity of those around us and miss the blessings of God? 

Here are some ways to eliminate those "negative nuggets" ~ eliminate much phone time unless it is an emergency and there are not as many of those as we think. I find that phone conversations ultimately lead to negativity. Eliminate much tv time and especially the news. Eliminate much time with those we know that spread their nuggets especially in jest and sarcasm because it causes the same damage to our minds and our decisions.

The best way for me personally to eliminate negative nuggets in my own life is to spend as much time with children as possible ~ they keep my mind uncluttered!

This quote was written by George Bernard Shaw. The picture was taken when my husband was watching and singing along to the movie "Frozen" with our grandkids.

Monday, September 25, 2017

Surrendering!

"Surrender.....sacrificing my life or suffering in order to change what needs to be changed."  Rick Warren

I believe with age we become complacent in who are and what we do. To some, change can be that dirty little word you don't want to hear. But without change we don't grow. And I believe if we're not growing, we're dying.

I know that God put me on this earth to be more than what I am or could ever imagine. My responsibility is to recognize my potential through God's eyes. But when God reveals things to me that our shameful to my character, do I turn a blind eye or do I really want to change? It's easy to point out the flaws in others, it takes the spotlight off of us. But when we ask God to change our hearts and become more like Christ, are we really prepared for that change?

When God changes us, it's a process, a long and sometimes brutal process. I can say this because of the process I am going through. It took me a long time to learn that even though I prayed for God to change my circumstances, it wasn't my circumstances that he wanted to change, it was my character, my heart. My prayer was to move out of this state, the desperation and the pleading with God but after several years of delay and drawing closer to God, I realized that God wanted me to be broken before anything could happen. That sounds terrible because God is a loving God so you're probably asking why would he want me broken? The answer to that question is because I also prayed to have a heart like Christ. And for me, God had to break me of who I became in order to become who he created. It has not been easy because it involves change and looking at my flaws but the outcome is far more than anything I could have ever imagined.

written by Tracey Graham - follow her blog: "Life Lessons" by Tracey!



Friday, September 15, 2017

My Future Is In His Hands!

"Appearance is something absolute, but reality is not that way - everything is interdependent, not absolute."  -Dalai Lama

It's been a while since I've written my thoughts down. For the last month or so, I've been lost. I don't know what to write, what to pray for or some days how to function.


It's been said that if you're still alive then God has a plan to use you. I'm alive but I don't know what he could possibly use me for? There are so many areas in my life that I need to work on, to give over to him to change me. The last month, I've been ashamed of who I've become. I so desperately want to change but I'm so scared of how to begin or more scared of....will the change last?


I finally realized that I sabotage relationships, good relationships. I push them away. I thought I was over my abandonment issues but I think there is something deeper that I'm not seeing. God, I need you to reveal my heart, my issues or what is the cause of my issues.


My Heavenly Father - I need you to pour down your Holy Spirit over me. I am lost, and I don't know how to overcome it. Only you can pull me up out of this pit and renew my spirit, my heart, my love for you. I pray that you will make all things new.  In your precious son's name - AMEN!!!


written by Tracey Graham





Friday, September 8, 2017

Discipleship

...and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”  Matthew 28:20

Discipleship is teaching others how to follow Jesus. We don't have to be great theologians to teach others how to follow. It's in the simple every day things that we do all day that we can teach those around us how to follow Jesus.

When my grandkids are in the car we always sing songs from Sunday school that I have taught over the years. Their favorite is "Jesus Loves Me" and we always discuss afterwards God's love and say the verse together John 3:16. I have been using my car rides with my kids and grandkids as an opportunity to worship as we sing and learn more about God together!

May we leave behind a generation of men, women, children, and grandchildren who love Christ with all their heart!

 This is a picture of me with my nephews at Dubois Lagoon in the 1990's ~ we would go there  some days from 8:30 am to 8:30 pm having breakfast, lunch and dinner by the water.

Sunday, September 3, 2017

Thankful

Blessed be the Lord, who daily loads us with benefits, the God of our salvation! Selah 
Psalm 68:19

There is so much to be thankful for each and every day. A heart of gratitude will change even the most bitter heart. God has given us life, love and salvation. Everything is not perfect in this broken world but there is still so much to enjoy all around us. A walk clears my head and makes me see life through grateful eyes. I am always in awe of the clouds, the sky, the ocean, a tree, a bird, a butterfly and so much more. 

Thankfulness brings joy when we realize how wonderful it is to have family and friends who love and care for us. God brings people into our lives to encourage us in our faith and in our daily walk. The other day one of my grandkids said, "Mom mom, you are my bestest friend!" It felt like my heart was going to burst with joy to hear such sweet words. Looking at her little face I could see she really wanted me to know how she felt in her heart. It may be a little thing but those are God's gifts in life and I am grateful!

"Let all that I am praise the LORD; may I never forget the good things he does for me. He forgives all my sins and heals all my diseases. Psalm 103:2-3

This is a picture of my backyard when we began planting flowers
 after a hurricane in 2005.