Love With Us

Driving home from church on Sunday, I was by myself and I fell into one of those moods that hits me, where I really need God to make himself present or maybe give me more of a sense of His Presence, physically.  I understand that He is very visible in the created things and that He manifests Himself supernaturally in many ways.  But, I just needed something more relatable as a human, if you know what I mean. I wanted Him to be less invisible.  So, as I was feeling this, a song came on and it voiced my emotions. I was feeling kind of lonely so I conjured up Jesus. Not in a weird ghost way. It was more that my spirit implored His presence to be with me in the car. That He would sit shotgun so I could hold His Hand. I don’t expect this to resonate with you necessarily. You may have a very solid connection with Him and feel Him at a deep level that doesn’t require any human type relationship components. Or maybe this whole concept is foreign and you don’t have any connection with Him. All I know, is that I need to experience Him in prayer, Bible study, fellowship, miracles, Holy Spirit and then, every once in a while, something akin to His “physical” presence. Maybe my way to feel Him close is unorthodox, but I think all believers want to know He’s near. I am certain  He absolutely understands that need and so He designated that Jesus would be known as Emmanuel.  I found this on jellytelly.com:

•The word “Emmanuel” comes from the Greek rendering of two Hebrew words, `immanu, “with us,” and ‘el, “God”… The word is found three times in the Bible:  Isaiah 7:14 , 8:8 , and Matthew 1:23 )- Matthew 1:23 is citing Isaiah 7:14: “Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall call his name Immanuel’ (which means, God with us)” (1:22-23). Thus, Matthew tells his readers that Jesus’ birth fulfills the prophecy of Isaiah.•

Here’s the cool thing about that. God’s love is greater than the scope of human imagination.  It cannot be measured since he is Love. (1John 4:8) and so, regardless of how I perceive Him, or how I feel, He is always Present.  This is why  Ephesians 3:18 is so important: “may you have the power to understand… how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is, to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.”

 Basically, Love with us.

Love Always ???

 

 

 

The Delusion of Competition

This is what it feels like EVERY SINGLE TIME, even after years of running. It’s a mind trick because outside running doesn’t feel nearly as hopeless. At least the landscape changes. I blame my best friend for putting me in this inescapable trap. She got me to agree to run a half marathon 5 years ago and now I can’t give up running. It took too much work to get here. She’s also to blame for my competitiveness. ? Yesterday after 84 years on the machine, a guy starts running on the one next to me. I can’t secretly race him because, he’s in pretty good shape and I can see he’s faster. I’ve already put in some time, but I decide, even if he’s faster, I will outlast him. This is where I can see if I can bring some satisfaction to my life even if so many other things aren’t complying. ? He was all perfect in his stride and no signs of fatigue, but I was all in. I literally will die on this machine before I give up. I almost did, but then after another 84 years, he slowed to a walk and quickly got off. Totally oblivious to all the “Chariots Of Fire” drama going on in my head. So, I think a fair amount of our dissatisfaction, especially with ourselves is firmly tied to competitiveness. You could say it’s comparison, but, seriously, we look at someone else, in any area, career, relationship, looks, finances, success, and we see if they’re competition. If they’re”better” we get all bummed. If you do that a lot, you just become super hard on yourself and eventually discount yourself in every way. That’s how I can be. It’s all rooted in pride. There’s only one race we’re equipped to run. God has given us the capability and the victory. “let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us,” Hebrews  12:1 “But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.” 1 Corinthians 15:57

 

Love Always????

Heart Locket or Lock it

I wrote this back on Aug 11 and posted to Facebook. I still feel it’s true and I still don’t know what I’m doing,  LOL:

I can’t construct a fail safe system to protect my heart. I can try. I can make every effort to shield it and be the most vigilant gatekeeper ever, but it’s impossible to keep it untouched. Sometimes, it just loves even when I tell it not to. It goes all in. Sometimes it loves people when I know the love may not be justified. For me it’s hardcore love when I do, because I don’t easily give my heart.  I’ve loved like this and suffered and I don’t forget that kind of pain.  So, then, I attempt secondary methods to mimimize the risk of hurt. I try to be preemptive in my words and actions. It’s my way of having some control over the situation. But hearts are not predictable. I might have some influence over mine, and I can try to sway someone else’s in order to save mine, but I can’t ever be assured it will work. I don’t believe this is what God meant in this verse:
“Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.” Proverbs 4:23.
That whole chapter is about wisdom and pursuing it, versus the alternative. It isn’t direction about not taking love chances, it’s about loving unwisely. Being careful not to run after what will distance you from Him. But, to love like Him is always wise and His own Heart is exposed all day. How can I have a balance in loving wisely, but being vulnerable too? I seriously have no idea. Right now, I just look at Him, and think, He is going to have to transcend me to get this done. He has the capability. “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him”– but God has revealed them to us by his Spirit. The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God.” 1Cor 2:9-10 His Spirit of Love knows my best and He can oversee my heart’s journeys. Even if my heart does go through pain while loving, it will be under His Hand and He understands. But more so, He is my only hope for healing.
“He heals the heartbroken and bandages their wounds.” Psalm 147:3

Love Always❤???????

I will say though, in the cases where the love was unjustified, God freed me. Trust me, I needed freedom from the regret of giving my trust and heart to ones that weren’t meant to have it.

?I’m wide awake
And now it’s clear to me
That everything you see
Ain’t always what it seems
I’m wide awake
Yeah, I was dreaming for so long

I wish I knew then
What I know now
Wouldn’t dive in
Wouldn’t bow down
Gravity hurts
You made it so sweet
Till I woke up on
On the concrete

Falling from cloud nine
Crashing from the high…
I’m wide awake
Not losing any sleep
Picked up every piece
And landed on my feet
I’m wide awake
Need nothing to complete myself, no

I’m wide awake
Yeah, I am born again
Out of the lion’s den
I don’t have to pretend…?

Wide Awake by Katy Perry