Monday, October 29, 2012

Let he (or she) who is without sin.........


In John 8:2-11 the bible says:


  At dawn he appeared again in the temple courts, where all the people gathered around him, and he sat down to teach them.  The teachers of the law and the Pharisees brought in a woman caught in adultery. They made her stand before the group and said to Jesus, “Teacher, this woman was caught in the act of adultery.  In the Law Moses commanded us to stone such women. Now what do you say?”  They were using this question as a trap, in order to have a basis for accusing him.
But Jesus bent down and started to write on the ground with his finger.  When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, “Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.”  Again he stooped down and wrote on the ground. At this, those who heard began to go away one at a time, the older ones first, until only Jesus was left, with the woman still standing there. Jesus straightened up and asked her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?”  “No one, sir,” she said. “Then neither do I condemn you,” Jesus declared. “Go now and leave your life of sin.”

This scripture is a cornerstone of my personal faith. 

Today on Twitter I saw a post concerning a christian minister who is reportedly blaming Hurricane Sandy on homosexuals. This pretty much got me up on my soapbox in about 2 seconds flat. Nothing makes me madder than when Christians publicly judge and tear down  any group of people. Why? Because when 1 christian passes judgment, it reflects on all of us. It turns hearts and minds against God.

The link on Twitter was to a Gay and Lesbian website, and did seem somewhat inflammatory. So I decided to look the minister up online when I got home. I found his blog, and while he wasn't quite as blatant as the article portrayed him, he was pretty close. (I am not posting either link here because I really don't want to link my blog to them. If you really want to know, leave me a message and I will send you the info)

Here is my issue. I have no problem with the notion that homosexuality is a sin. If that is what you believe, okay. For myself, I am not sure. This is primarily because I feel that sin is a deeply personal thing between each person and God. Homosexuality is not an issue in my walk with God, but I have plenty other issues. I am certainly not without sin so based on the scripture above, I have no right to judge. 

Maybe I am just naive, maybe my faith is to simplistic. If it is, well I think I am okay with that. Don't judge me too harshly, okay?

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Saturday fun, thinking outside the box!

Saturday didn't go the way I planned it. Don't you hate it when that happens? I do. It can really mess with my head.

My plan was pretty simple, we were supposed to go to the Mushroom Festival. Mushroom Festival? you ask, what is a mushroom festival? Pretty much what it sounds like. You can check out the official website here.

Basically it's an arts and crafts fair centered around the local Mushroom plant. Which if you think about it is kinda weird since Monterey Mushroom isn't close to the largest employer in Madison county. That would be TDCJ (Texas Department of Criminal Justice for those not familiar).....can you imagine the prison festival? Maybe we are better off with mushrooms.

But I digress, my plans were disrupted first by my mom. She was supposed to go with me but she wasn't feeling well and begged off. So I tried to talk James into going with me. But he was not interested. He countered with an offer to take me to Huntsville to go junk hunting in the local "antique" shops.

Let's be clear, I do not shop for anything that can remotely considered pricey or truly antique. That's not me. I shop for the silly, the fun, and the cheap. Today I found tons of stuff I love, but most of the prices were not right (meaning not nearly cheap enough). I took lots of pictures though, just so I could share them with you!

so ugly they are cute
happy hippo
life really is full of little surprises.
just cute
God Bless Texas
Just plain cool
I remember going to the prison rodeo as a kid
And now (drum roll please) here are the precious things that made home with us!

the shot glasses and cup and saucer are James'. The rest is all me

so ugly he HAD to come home with me

the price was right and the thoughts hit home
need a really old band aid??
this one's kind of blurry, but you get the idea, right?
Also blurry, but I am lazy. Deal with it.
So, what did I learn today? It's okay if my plans don't pan out. Sometimes there are better plans just waiting in the wings for the chance to shine. This isn't a new lesson, but one I have to be reminded of often. My way isn't always the right way or the only way. It's just my way. Sometimes I just need to let go and let God (or James) direct my day. Like the sign says, sometimes I just need to think outside my box. :-)


Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Something really cool happened

So the coolest thing happened!! Well, probably not THE coolest thing, but it is pretty cool, and a little scary. And it requires a little back story, so bear**with me.

**sidebar, is it "bear" or "bare"? This confuses me. "bare" sounds like I am asking you to get naked with me, which I am ABSOLUTELY NOT doing. "Bear" sounds like, well, a bear. As in wild animal. Grammar nazis, I need some help here. Oh crap, I don't think I should use the word nazi in a faith based blog.....and to make it worse spell check wants me to capitalize it...Grammar enthusiasts, PLEASE help me here!!!!!!!

Anyway, I have a Twitter account that until very recently I never used. Frankly, I am a Facebook girl. I love connecting with my family and friends and sharing pictures and such. Twitter never made much sense to me. Occasionally I do use it to cyber-stalk a few of my favorite celebs, but that was about it. Apparently I have been missing a lot, and the more I have gotten into blogging and following other bloggers, the more it has become obvious that I need to rethink Twitter.  So I have been playing around with it some, and last night I saw a post from FanBolt, which is a website all about all things entertaining (TV, movies, games, etc).

Here is a copy of their tweet:
 RT : FanBolt is still looking for passionate fans who want to write about their fave TV shows! If this is you let us know! :-)

So, on a whim, I answered:
  me!! I would love the chance to write about some of my favorite shows!

A few emails later I am going to be writing weekly reviews of Castle starting next week.
COOL, right?!?

It ain't a novel or anything, and it's totally for free, but who cares. I am just excited to try something new. I have the feeling that God is challenging me to come more out of my shell. Yes folks, I do believe that God is using a non-faith based website about the worldly world of TV to help me to stretch my comfort zone. God can use anything he wants, why not my love of TV shows??

So, pray for me as I prepare/obsess about this new thing. Pray that God will guide me, that I will have fun, meet some new people, and most importantly that God will work through me in a new way!

Also, pray I my writing doesn't look like this:
this guy probably doesn't belong in this blog either...sorry

 Okay, that is all for now! I just want to leave you with a wonderful thought I heard a church a couple of weeks ago:

God is not offended when we require His presence.*
*I may have to write more about this later

Saturday, October 20, 2012

a confession

I self-sabotage. I started to say self-harm, but that sounds a little extreme. I don't cut myself or anything. Mainly because:
  1. ouch
  2. sharp objects scare me silly
  3. long sleeves in the Texas heat are NOT for me
  4. OUCH
I do little things when things are bad that sort of prolong the bad times. Does that make sense? No, it doesn't. Why would anybody do that??? I really don't know, but I do it. Yesterday was a bad day. I had a melt down on the way home and had to pull over on the side of the road and cry. A lot.

Thing is, I knew I needed to stop several miles before I did. I should have pulled over and taken a pill that would have calmed me down before it got too bad. But I kept pushing. And in the back of my mind I knew what I was doing, that I was tempting fate. But it didn't stop there. When it was all done and I was home, I had a terrible headache. And I just sat there with it. Are you starting to sense a pattern? I could have, should have taken some Ibuprofen, which would have stopped the pain within an hour. But I didn't. Because in the back of my mind, or maybe deep in my spirit, I deserve the pain.

Sadly, I didn't stop there. Or more accurately, I did stop. I stopped taking all my meds. I haven't had my depression meds, or my blood pressure meds, OR my blood sugar meds (add to that I have been eating a bunch of junk). Don't worry, I can't keep this up long, because:
  1. James will notice and make me take them
  2. my blood pressure will go up and give me an even worse headache (I can only take so much pain, since I am a sissy)
  3. one of my friends who has my phone # may read this and call me and hassle me lovingly remind me to stop being stupid
For now though, I feel paralyzed. Obviously not literally, because I am typing all this. But it is like being a spectator, looking at my own life. Or lack of life. Whatever.

Why am I telling you all of this? This is a blog about faith, and sharing this kind of thing could cause someone to doubt whether I have any faith at all. Or maybe you might see that I am human. Fragile and forgiven. Even when I can't seem to forgive myself. Even I am paralyzed by fear and self loathing, I am loved. No matter what, I am covered by grace.....

Do not withhold your mercy from me, O Lord; may your love and your truth always protect me. Psalm 40:11

And now I am gonna go take my meds, before one of you finds a way to contact my husband and rat me out. 

Friday, October 19, 2012

Healing and prayer

I have this friend, a beautiful, kind, witty woman who is full of faith in God and a blessing to everyone she knows. And she has cancer. Very aggressive, very deadly cancer. Recently her doctor gave her a prognosis that was not good.

Now, don't get me wrong, I think that doctors need to be honest. And that knowing the worst can help you to prepare, to consider what your legacy will be to the ones you leave behind. It can be a blessing that can help you reach out to those you love and find peace.

But I think it could also build a wall of fear and acceptance of a future that God may not have planned for you. Let me be really clear here....

I believe in healing. I believe that even today God is all powerful and a miracle working God. And I believe very strongly that we must ask for our miracles. We are called to ask, to speak our requests to our Father, to lay our burdens down and then claim our miracle. And keep claiming it over and over until we either receive it or receive a word in our spirit that guides us in a new direction. Because, let's face it, bad things happen to good people and sometimes the answer is no.

But until God speaks that "no" into our spirits, I believe we have an obligation to claim our "YES".

As to my friend, I got a text today that her numbers are improving, and I am praising God for his grace. And I will continue to lift her up every day until the answer comes. Because I am believing whole heartedly for a wildly enthusiastic YES!

Saturday, October 13, 2012

The holy of holies

I am still listening to "Book of God" and I am still in the old testament listening to them talk about the temple. About the holy of holies, which is the innermost sanctuary in the temple. The dwelling place of God.

And it struck me today, that is me. And you.

Now, I don't know about you, but I am not feeling very holy. I am still struggling to find my balance since the panic attacks began again, but even before that I never considered myself holy. But that is what I am. I am the dwelling place for the most high God. Because of Jesus sacrifice, God no long resides in a building, but in us. He dwells in me.

Stop and really think about that for a minute.......


Now, if we really believe that, what will we do differently? If I really believe this, how does that change me? 

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Friday, October 5, 2012

Glass

I love the song "Glass" by Thompson Square

I have listened to it over and over this week. It has been another hard week for me, I had a bad panic attack on Wednesday (see my post in thursday thankfulness for more on that). I love the entire song, but my favorite line is
"We are fragile, we are human
We are shaped by the light we let through us"

By the light we LET through us. I have felt very fragile this week. Very human. And it would be very easy to let that overwhelm me, to pull the shutters over my heart and let my world become very dark. But we are called to rise above ourselves. To let His light shine through us. Even when all I want is to hide away and cry. I am not perfect. I am not not even close. But I am forgiven. God's light lives in me. I hope and pray that you can see it.






Monday, October 1, 2012

I am a scifi FAN

And I capitalized FAN for a reason. I love to lose myself in other realities. I suppose it is an extension of my love of reading. I just love a good story. (Have I said "love" enough??)
One of my favorite shows is "Falling Skies", which is a great story about the survivors of an alien attack of earth....but I am getting off track here. The point is, this is one of my favorite shows.

Not long ago I stumbled across a blog written by one of the producer's of the show, so of course I started following it. It's fun, getting a small peek behind the scenes. Anyway, not long ago he posted a blog asking for fan questions and naturally I had a few. Then the coolest thing happened today, he answered my questions! I was so excited, and why not?!? This man, who is obviously an important "somebody", took the time to answer my questions (& a lot of other people's too...but who cares about that! )

But here's the thing, in the grand scheme of life who is this man to me? Nobody really. What impact does he have on my life? I enjoy the show he works on, sure; but if it went off the air tomorrow I would just move on to my next "favorite" show. So why am I so happy that he took the time to respond to me? What does it matter? And more to the point, when was the last time I got this excited about my conversations with God? 

Now, don't get me wrong, I am not saying that I can't enjoy a good TV show or book. But I need to stop and think, to consider where I am placing these things in relation to my walk with my Father. Because that is the one relationship that shapes all the others. My conversations with Him form the foundation for EVERYTHING else. If I am not listening, if I am not involved in the discussion, & if I am not excited about I am hearing, then how can I grow? I can't. Plain and simple. 

God has to be my primary focus, not to the exclusion of the world, but to the inclusion of it. Does that make sense? If my focus is on God and I am walking the path he has laid out for me, it seems that it would open up more possibilities, more opportunities for sharing him with the world. Rather than fitting him into the world, as I a prone to do, I need to fit the world into my walk with him. 
 

Honestly, this is not where I saw this post going when I started....now I have given myself something to think about. :)