Speed Limits

Speed Limit 5, Speed Limit 45, Speed Limit 70, Speed Limit 80, School Zone, Construction Zone….most speed limits are posted in an effort to protect those who are living or active in a particular area.  We have a new driver in our home and so we have been paying pretty close attention to speed limits. Sometimes I overlook them, resent them, miss them. In general, I try to follow them but it is hard when you feel like you are the only one!

Have you noticed there are times when life moves so slowly? Maybe you are waiting for a report from the doctor or your are in a time of life when you are out of your element, bumbling along. Other times life moves rather quickly and you find you are traveling almost at the speed of light! Different parts of life seem to happen at different speeds. If you have grown children, maybe it feels like the kids grew up so fast or maybe it felt like forever to you. There are times I have found myself trying to ‘speed’ through some experiences that I would really rather not be in the middle of.

Has that ever happened to you?

Hurry, hurry, get me out of here!!! Sometimes God allows us to see His speed limits on our situations. Sometimes He makes us stop and lie down in green pastures so He can restore our souls. Have you ever found yourself resisting the limits or trying to close your eyes and breeze past anyway?

Think about how God uses speed limits in your life. Where are the places He would like you to slow down and take notice of His activity? You may be walking through a difficult time, but if time seems to move slowly maybe it is time to take look around thoughtfully and prayerfully. What is God doing during this time? Dig into God’s Word and notice the times when it appeared things were moving at a snail’s pace. Our time frame is certainly not God’s! Where is He going and at what pace? Is there something I can or should be doing in this time of speed limits?

Heavenly Father, please help me see the speed limits you would like me to follow in my life. Give me your insight and heighten my awareness during a restricted speed zone so I can see what is happening around me and not endanger others with reckless speeds. Thank you for Your protection and blessing in my life!


State of the Union

Our family gathered around the television last night to hear the State of the Union. It was another great reminder to pray for our country and for those who are serving and leading our nation!

Christians have many differing views on where our country is headed and the best way to get there. It is important to be informed on the issues, prayerfully ponder them, seek God’s heart on the matters, and vote when given the opportunity.

Members of US government would benefit from our prayers. We have city, county, and state government officials who would benefit from our prayers as well. Please consider praying specifically for those serving in all levels of public office that God would:

  • guard their marriages and families
  • protect their physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual health
  • safeguard them against the schemes of those who intend to harm or lead them astray
  • defend them when they are in the correct course of action
  • convict them when they are not
  • unveil the eyes of those who do not believe in Him
  • surround believers with others who will encourage spiritual growth
  • surround unbelievers with opportunities to engage in healthy spiritual conversation with Godly men and women

Ask God to give you other prayer areas to add to this list. You can even pray for your local, state, and national leaders by name! Don’t get too bogged down in the details–start by praying in general and ask God to direct your prayers through His Word.

Here is a link to an organization offering many different angles and opportunities for prayer. Check them out when you have a chance!!

http://presidentialprayerteam.com/index.php

Trouble Focusing?

Ever have one of those times when life is crazy and the concerns of the moment are overwhelming and make it difficult to get your bearings?

  • A car accident leaves a loved one critically injured.
  • A “pink slip” is handed to you.
  • A grim diagnosis comes from the doctor.
  • A crime is committed against you.

Or maybe your stressors are a collection of little situations over time that have become overwhelming and incapacitating. Thankfully, we don’t often experience the big situations listed above, but life can change so quickly. Sometimes, a survey of the things I need to get done or am already behind on can make feel dizzy and disoriented, not knowing where to start.

If the path seems a bit fuzzy, here are some things that might help you regain your focus:

  • Close your eyes and ask God for His strength for the moment.
  • Ask for prayer support. Sometimes just stating the struggle you are going through gets it out on the table and gives you chance to access it.
  • Be honest about your situation.
  • Take a brisk walk for 15 minutes to clear your head.

We all have different circumstances that send us reeling and mess with how we are looking at our situation. We often are unable to see God’s perspective and the work God is doing “behind the scenes”. If you are in a calm time in life, pray for those you may know who are walking through a difficult time. Lift them up in prayer or lend a hand.

I pray you learn from and grow in your relationship with God. Ask Him to clear your eyes so you can get a glimpse of His vision!

Stop Signs

Have you ever breezed through a stop sign before? I have, unintentionally. I have even considered it intentionally late at night when I am tired, want to get home, and no one else is at the intersection.

Have there been times when you know there are places or relationships  God would not want you to enter and you did so, anyway? Sometimes you hear the “I knew I shouldn’t have done that” in your mind.

Next time you see some signs as you are traveling down the road in your vehicle, think about how those very same signs can be useful as signs for faith–construction zone, danger zone, bridge out, DO NOT ENTER.

Are there areas in your life where you are ignoring some signs you ought to be paying attention to?

I think God has always been pretty generous giving me clues and indications about certain situations I should steer clear of. Sometimes, though, I can be rebellious and forge my way ahead anyway. Typically there are some not-so-pleasant consequences but once in a while I come away unscathed.  It’s risky business.

Maybe I should heed the signs that He has placed for my protection and thank Him for loving me and forgiving me even when I deliberately ignore them.

Lord, teach me to seek Your wisdom and counsel and follow it as well!


The Quiet

Have you ever noticed it is really hard to find a quiet place to be with God? There always seems to be some level of sound; the furnace fan, the hum from an electronic device, a drip, drip, drip from a faucet, or a bird chirping. Sometimes our minds have a difficult time finding quiet because so many things call for our attention and we mentally run through to-do lists. Distractions are everywhere but are reduced significantly if we at least find a quiet place.

Not too long ago, there was a time when stores weren’t open on Sunday. Youth sports events were never held on Sundays. Families stayed home and had a day of quiet. Sunday was a day of Sabbath rest.  How quickly it happens that every moment we have is filled with busy-ness and noise. Are we so busy that we don’t have time to take a break?

Let me encourage you to take some time today to be still with God. Just you and God and your Bible. It is hard to steal away those moments, but it can be such a time of refreshment, honesty, insight, and peace. Let God speak to you through His Word. Let Him shed a new light on your circumstance and breath His Spirit into your soul.

Remember, we are human beings, not human doings….take time to be with God! Be refreshed, renewed, and encouraged. Take refuge in Him!

Psalm 16 is a great Psalm to ponder!

Copy Cat

Follow God’s example, therefore, as dearly loved children 2 and walk in the way of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God. Ephesians 5: 1-2

The term “copy cat” isn’t typically a compliment, but I know things would run much more smoothly in my home if I would walk in the way of love and imitate God instead of reacting to the circumstances and attitudes around me.

When I think about walking in Jesus’ love, of course I want to be an imitator of Jesus for the people I love in my life. But I can’t give what I don’t have so I must first allow Jesus’ love, sacrifice, and forgiveness extend to me. Sometimes that takes a while to sink in as deep as it needs to.

God always gives me an opportunity to practice what He wants me to learn. The more I “copy” Him, the more natural His type of actions will become. I want to copy the way God loves, cares, encourages, blesses, sees, sacrifices, etc. So I must read and study His examples of that behavior. Digging into Scripture is a great way to really see God’s love in action.

If you have children in your life, tell them you want them to be a ‘copy cat’. See how they respond to that statement. If they are in school or have any siblings, I bet they already have a negative impression of that term.  Ask them if there is ever a good time to copy someone. Who could they copy and be doing the right thing? Make a list of things you can do to copy God’s love, grace, mercy, forgiveness, etc.  Be a Copy Cat!!!

Cicus loves to sit on our copier/printer!!!

 

 

Rubik’s Cube®

The Rubik’s Cube is a 3-D mechanical puzzle invented in 1974 by Hungarian sculptor and professor of architecture Ernő Rubik. We were pretty excited at our house when it first came out because we are 100% Hungarian.  It wasn’t until recently that I wondered if there were some correlations between this cube and my life.

  • While getting one side to be all one color is impressive, it isn’t considered “solving the puzzle”.
  • Life Correlation: Just because I look put together in one area doesn’t mean I have all of life figured out. Check out all the sides.
  • One wrong turn can lead to several and that can lead to a mess.
  • Life Correlation: One wrong turn is rarely ever just one wrong turn. It is often the start of a series of bad moves.
  • Trying to put the puzzle back to its original shape takes time, patience, and practice.
  • Life Correlation: Trying to pick up the pieces in my life and put it back to its ‘original shape’ is impossible. I am so thankful for God’s mercy, grace, and forgiveness!
  • No matter how messed up it looks right now, there is someone who can put my confused Rubik’s Cube®  back into a complete and perfect, original shape.
  • Life Correlation: No matter how messed up my life looks right now, God can take all of the wrongs I have done and the wrongs done to me and transform them for ministry moments in this broken and hurting world.

My prayer is that you allow God to work His healing and wholeness into every area of your life. As your healing progresses, do not be surprised if He asks you to share your story (His-story) to bless another fellow traveler on the path.