Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Rooms and Walls

I was thinking about life today and how it changes so quickly. You might be going along and everything in your life is great. You have a good job, married to a great spouse, great kids, house, you know...the "proverbial" American dream life. At least that's what everybody who knows you thinks. Really, you have an okay life...decent job, "married", still great kids, might not be the American dream life but, it is your life and it's better than a lot of other peoples.  Then one day you wake up and it all changes. In a matter of sometimes just minutes it's gone! Sometimes because of a disaster, a death, a divorce, who knows...lots of things can change your life...maybe just one bad choice you make! Sometimes it's other peoples fault, sometimes it's yours and sometimes it's a combination. For me, I lost everything I lived for more than once and I wasn't totally blameless in any of those times. The thing is...every time it happens you lose a little more of yourself. Pretty soon you get to where you start shutting down different areas of yourself. In effect you are...losing your life.

Anybody that has been following this blog knows that I have been reading a book called...Rooms. It's about someone who when he was young suffered great loss. Because of everything that happened to him he shut down emotions and feelings in himself and started building "rooms". It's a good read so I won't tell too much in case you want to read it. But now, I'm almost to the end and I wish that there was a sequel. Why? Because I have learned so much from it. I think that everyone at sometime in their life puts up walls and at times even...builds rooms. Eventually, if you want to survive life, you have to start cleaning out those "rooms" and tearing down those "walls". You have to get rid of your old life and start working on a new one. I can tell's a hard thing to do. The one thing I have found out can't do it on your own. You will need help. You have to let the Lord take over.

Matthew 16:25 (New Living Translation)

25 If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for my sake, you will save it.

What's the main lesson in "Rooms"? You have to totally give up your life to have life!! Take a look at your rooms. They might be filled with disappointment...hurts...fear...self loathing...regrets...failures...all of us have our own "rooms" and none of them are good. However, there is hope for us all...GOD. He is about freedom in every area of our lives. You just have to turn totally to Him. If you want life and freedom...turn to the Lord.

2 Corinthians 3:16-17 (New Living Translation)

 16 But whenever someone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. 17 For the Lord is the Spirit, and wherever the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.

You have to let God become a part of you. The biggest part of you. He has to be what matters to you most. In our minds we usually understand's transferring those thoughts to your soul that can be hard. You have to remember that God is in you and you are in God! You have to fully surrender to Him and let Him be Lord of your life all the time...not just when it's convenient.

Matthew 22:37 (New Living Translation)

 37 Jesus replied, "You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind."

You have to let your old life, your old...thoughts...failures...disappointments...bad choices...things people did to you...anything you have stored up in those "rooms" of your soul...fade. You will always remember them...but you can be free from the pain of them.

Lose your life, but lose it in and for, God!! It's not easy...but it's a choice! Will it be yours?

Monday, January 24, 2011

Lost Among Them

You're just another silhouette
in a sea that's full of masks

Why do you hide your face
you're one amongst the mass

You don't know where you're headed
or where you've just come from
All you know right now
is that you must surely run

You're hiding in among them
the ones without their face
Wondering where they went
still looking for that place

Where will you go now
you know there's no one left
They really are all gone
the ones that you knew best

You should have listened to them
when only there was gain
Now it's all for naught
why did you play that game

Then you wake up with a start
sweat pouring down your face
It's yet another nightmare
of how you ran the race

It really isn't over
your life will still go on
But can you find the answers
or will you just move on

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Proverbs 4:18-19

Today is Sunday...the LORD'S day...a great day!!  GOD is great and wonderful and full of mercy and grace...I'm forever grateful!!

So...I have been sitting and reading "Rooms" some more today. Wow...does GOD ever stop working on us?? Truly, I hope not. Reading this book has been an eyeopener for me. Not that the things I'm reading are new...I don't know...maybe I'm just really ready to hear them now. Maybe some of you reading this are finally ready too! None of what I am about to say is from "Rooms" it is just what it made me think about. Actually...what GOD wants us to think about.

Everyday we make choices. When to get up, when to eat, good mood, bad get the idea. We live in a world full of darkness. But, right on the edge of that darkness that fills our minds is LIGHT that we have to invite to come in. If we don't invite the LIGHT...darkness is happy to fill all the rooms. For myself I experienced so many years of darkness that I never thought I would ever not choose total LIGHT. But in reality I do at times. The book talks about there being two kingdoms in this world and eventually you choose which one you will be in. You really have to make the choice...Light,, cold...GOD, satan.

Proverbs 4:18-19

The ways of right-living people glow with light;
   the longer they live, the brighter they shine.
But the road of wrongdoing gets darker and darker—
   travelers can't see a thing; they fall flat on their faces.

To me what that passage from Proverbs says is; The longer you live in the light the more it becomes a part of you. Same with the dark. If you keep on leaning towards darkness, eventually it will take you down!! At some point you will be so used to living in the dark it will seem right too you. That kingdom will win your soul. Don't "ride the fence" as they say. Get on one side or the other. Light can't live with dark. Those rooms that you still have closed off you have to unlock and let GOD do the work in you that you need...HIS work!! HE wants to heal. It's hard, I know it is. At times we struggle because we know that those locked up rooms of our lives need to be opened up and cleaned out. They need the light and fresh air. The Light of GOD so you can make it too where you need to go and HIS fresh air so you can breathe!

When you turn your life over to CHRIST you can't just go into it halfheartedly. I know that I didn't. But sometimes because of the world we live in, and sometimes because of our pasts, we have a hard time letting the LIGHT completely take over our lives. We think that we have until one day GOD lets us know that really we still have some locked up rooms in our souls. I know that is true for me. At times I kind of let the doors start to open but as soon as I feel a little "pain" I slam them shut again. Why??!! Fear. You know, satan thrives on us being fearful. We thrive when we let GOD take over completely!

I hope this post makes sense because it is hard to publish these kinds of things. But...I know there is a purpose for it. My prayer is this...If you have any of these locked up rooms in your soul...that you along with me, will decide to do what GOD wants. Let HIM in completely and let HIM help you to live totally in the LIGHT!

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Joshua 1:9

Over the course of the last 3 1/2 years GOD has spoken to me in so many different ways. The most awesome and special way to me has been when HE has used HIS SPIRIT to communicate with my spirit. And of course when I read and study HIS WORD HE helps me to understand things and renews my mind...which I need all the time! Then when GOD uses friends in my life to speak to me it always means so much. You know, I could go on and on because there are so many different avenues that GOD uses to speak to each and everyone of us. Lately HE has been using something that I really never thought about...just plain old fiction books!

Recently the book I read was called Isolation by Travis Thrasher. It took me a long time to read it because every time I picked it up I only read a few pages and would put it away. It wasn't the type of book I would normally read because there was something, or someone, very evil in it. Let me say that it is a Christian book. The main characters were missionaries that had left the field and now reside in the states. Even though I was having a hard time reading the book something kept drawing me back to it. Finally I bought a new book to read but ended up picking up Isolation again and finished it in one day. When I finally got towards the end of the book I realized what the whole book was really about...Faith. A seven year old kid that had more faith than his ex missionary parents. He knew beyond any shadow of a doubt that GOD could and would take care of matter what evil they were facing. When I finally managed to get to the last couple of chapters I knew why I had to keep reading it. Having matter the sometimes very hard for me. Even though the story wasn't really true I know there are many Christians...young and old...that have the same amazing, undying, faith that the kid in the book had! I really believe that GOD is the one that kept me picking that book up over and over again.

Now I have started a new book, Rooms by James L. Rubart. Again it is the type of book I normally wouldn't read. This one is not evil just different. From the time I first saw it in the store I was drawn to it. I would pick it up, read the back and immediately put it back on the shelf...many times over. Here is the main description line on the back of the book. "What would you find if you walked into the rooms of your soul?" One man is about to find out. Needless to say the book is now mine and I am reading it. There are so many things about the character that I relate too. The whole premise of the book is how we shut off different parts of ourselves because of things in our lives that caused us pain. The character in the book has not given his life to the LORD yet but...GOD is working on him by opening up the rooms of his soul that the character has shut off due to old hurts. Well...all I can say is...

This is where the light hearted blog would best come in. You know, the one I spoke of last. Talking about the "just plain fun things!"'s not gonna happen. Instead...this is another transparent moment for me to share. Even though I am a Christian there are still "Rooms" that I have chosen to keep locked up. Not necessarily because I want to hold onto the pain but because somehow it seems easier. In the book it says this...Your heart is a sacred and magical thing. From it flows the wellspring of life. It's why the wisest man who ever lived said,  "We must guard it above all else. You won't reach it by your intellect. The pathway to the heart is always by the SPIRIT, and the pathway to the SPIRIT is always by the heart." Then a few pages later it talks about how JESUS came for one thing...Too set us free from things that we allow to keep us captive to our old selves...our past life before CHRIST. That's where the renewing process comes in. The renewing of our minds...and our souls. We need to allow the LORD to do this. But...that's a choice too!

I'm not sure where this new year is taking me but I do know one's starting out to be a wild ride. From my first post of the year, too this one...there seems to be an underlying theme. GOD doesn't want me to stay this year...where I ended last year. There is renewing that needs to happen. I'm sure for some of you reading this that you could use some healing and renewing also. Maybe you need to accept CHRIST into your life. Or, maybe you need to let HIM finish a work HE has started in you. I understand that...sometimes the battle just seems to get the best of you. Don't give is a battle but we aren't fighting it by ourselves.

"This is my command—be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”


Friday, January 21, 2011

Doctor or Physician

Do you know the difference between a doctor and a Physician? A doctor cures but a Physician heals. I heard that on tv tonight and this thought instantly hit me. That's why JESUS is the Great Physician. An earthly doctor can make you feel better when you're sick. In other words...he can "cure" your symptoms but he can't always make you well. On the flip side of that...JESUS, our Great Physician, can actually "heal" us of whatever is wrong with us. JESUS can make us completely well!!

Not only does HE heal us of physical diseases, but emotional...spiritual...mental...anything that makes you "sick" in any way. HE is the Great Physician! JESUS renews our broken hearts, our souls...our spirit, and our minds as well as our bodies.

Psalm 103:3
He forgives all my sins
      and heals all my diseases.

Psalm 147:3
He heals the brokenhearted
      and bandages their wounds.

2 Corinthians 4:16
That is why we never give up.
     Though our bodies are dying, our spirits are being renewed every day.

Romans 12:2
Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.
     Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.

Many of these things HE heals us of are just normal sicknesses. Many of them are things caused by what others have done too us. Still others are brought on by things we have done ourselves...often times because we aren't living the way we should be. After we become a Christian we need to change the way we live...strive to live a "holy life". When you become a Christian it's amazing what the LORD will do in you. HE will start the healing process for all of those things that make you sick emotionally...spiritually...and mentally...the "renewing process". The catch is that you have to want to be renewed and healed have to make the choice, everyday, to change! It's not easy, it's a process. Sometimes you have a lot of things that need HIS healing and it doesn't always happen quickly. As I recently's a one-step-at-a-time experience! When the going is slow, don't give up or give in too your old ways. Keep going forward in the "renewing process". In the end it will be worth the fight.

So...when it's all said and done...who do you want treating you? A doctor or the Great Physician?

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Something To Think About

I've been reading some different blogs lately and started to think that maybe I should change mine. The reason is because most of the blogs I read are pretty light hearted. You know...people talking about their hobbies...what they did with their families over the weekend...their vacations...just lots of fun stuff. So I started thinking...Wow, I should really lighten up a bit. Make my blog more fun. Immediately my next thought was...No, this is what my blog is supposed to be about. Yes...sometimes it is heavy and a lot to think about...but that's what it's supposed to do. Make me and others think. So I will leave you with something we can all think about.

This is by Max Lucado...

The Purpose In Our Pain

“Your faith makes you offer your lives as a sacrifice in serving God.” Philippians 2:17
When we face struggles, we often wonder, Why? Years from now, though, we may realize that it was those struggles that taught us something we could not have otherwise learned—that there was a purpose in our pain. God’s purpose is greater than your pain, and he has a greater purpose than your problems.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Matthew 7:8

Have you ever noticed when God wants you to change things in your life He usually gives you ample opportunity? Last week I stepped out and set some goals for myself, goals that I know God wants me to work on. I don't think I will ever be able to say that I have totally accomplished any of them because they are things that can constantly get better. However, I have already had opportunity to work on all of them and I would say I'm about 40/60 with what I have been presented with. The 40 part is what I have done right!

Last week I responded to family on Facebook but then neglected to return the "phone call". That's one of those...need to "ramp it up a bit". Then this morning I had planned to get up early...4 a.m...and read my Bible and talk to God before leaving for work. Sadly to say...I didn't make it. I need an alarm that you can't turn off until my feet hit the floor!! After being at work for a while...and having a few "irritations"...I am definitely getting up at 4 tomorrow. I think that God was just letting me know that I would be able to handle things better if I prepared myself ahead of time. However, God and I did have a talk while I was driving to work...

That "talk" is really why I am writing this post. Since I started blogging I have learned to be very open and transparent about my life. Sometimes I wonder why? Is it to help someone else or is it to help me? I'm convinced that the answer is sometimes both, sometimes others, and most every So, this morning I'm talking to God and asking Him to help me learn how to be closer to Him. Help me just to get it right to Him me to change my life and anything about me that needs changing...whatever I need to do, help me to do it!! Well, guess what happened? God answered me. If you read what I just wrote I didn't ask Him a question. I was just asking Him for help to do what I needed to do. Did you catch it yet? Help "me" what "I" need to do!! Well...God heard me and He let me know. He told me that "me" and "I" was some of the problem. I can't do it on my own. Turn it over to Him and He will help me. Yes...I still have to work on all the goals I set for myself. But...I have to trust Him. Get out of the way and let Him work in my life however He chooses. If it's just through reading His word and talking with Him that's good. If it's through other people and I have to ask for help, that's good too...just do it. Quit setting myself up to fail. goals haven't changed but how they're going to be accomplished has. Talk to God first. Listen for His response. Do what He tells me to do...even when it's hard.

"Be simple; take our Lord's hand and walk through things."
Brother Andrew

Matthew 7:8 (New Living Translation)
8 For everyone who asks, receives. Everyone who seeks, finds. And to everyone who knocks, the door will be opened.

Saturday, January 15, 2011


Some synonyms for mayhem...havoc, destruction, pandemonium, commotion, disorder, violence, fracas, trouble...the list goes on and on.

Have you ever seen the Mayhem commercials from Allstate? There are quite a few of them but my favorite is the "GPS" Mayhem commercial. I love it when Mayhem starts talking like the GPS. He tells the driver..."Turn right up ahead"...then says "You never update me, so now, I just have to wing it." Then says..."No. I meant, turn left up ahead...Recalculating." Then yells..."Turn Right NOW!!" Then gives an evil laugh as driver smashes into parked car! Then says..."Your insurance may not protect you from this. Get Allstate. Be protected from me." Too me...Mayhem is just Funny!! But, last time I saw it, it made me think of something else...

Mayhem does everything he can to destroy peoples property, and in turn, sometimes their lives. Who does that remind you of? It reminds me of the lying little devil! In all the commercials Mayhem wreaks havoc...causes commotion... brings destruction...all of the things that the word mayhem stands for, Mayhem does. Just like the devil. You may get up to do your devotions and prayer time before starting your day when you suddenly get the idea to turn on the tv instead. After all, you got up early so you have plenty of time! So you turn it on, watch a couple minutes of news then think...well, I better start reading. Just as you are about to turn it off the news person announces the next story to come on. You think...Okay, I have to hear about that too! So you continue to watch until you're out of time and have to leave. You didn't even read one line of your devotions. Why do you think that was? Better yet...who could it have been? Mayhem...or in this case...the devil.

Mayhem says..."You never update me." When you update your GPS you are down loading all the latest directions and information so that it tells you the right directions to get where you need to go. That's what devotions and prayer does for us. It fills us with His love and mercy and directions for our life for that day. Just like the GPS gets us to our destination so we don't get God gets us through our day and helps us to stay on His path for our lives. He gives us a fresh start every morning. Just like Mayhem...if we don't get updated we just have to "wing it"!! Next thing you know..."RECALCULATING!!" "Turn Right Now!"...and your day comes crashing in on you! If you had taken the time to get that "update" you could handle the problem a whole lot better. But decided to "wing it" instead. Now who's laughing? The devil...can you hear his evil laugh as your day goes bad?!

We have insurance that will protect us from Mayhem. That doesn't mean we won't have problems. It does mean that we will be able to get through them with a lot less stress and anxiety. You know what the other little blurb is that Allstate uses? You're in Good Hands...with Allstate. The problem with insurance is they only help you once you have an accident. When we are a child of God we really are in Good Hands...GOD's Hands! I would much rather be in His hands than Allstate's. We are protected from Mayhem...havoc, destruction, pandemonium, commotion, disorder, violence, fracas, trouble...and anything else the devil wants to throw our way.

Lamentations 3:22:23
22 The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, his mercies never come to an end; 23 they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.

The devil knows if you start your day with devotions and talking to God that he can't have half as much fun with you. We need to say "Recalculating" to him. Destroy his plans before he can destroy us. Update every day...more than once. Read your Bible and talk to God so you don't have to "wing it".

Tuesday, January 11, 2011


Well...January is here. In fact, it's day eleven. People have been asking me if I made any resolutions for this year...the Why? Because anytime I do that I fail and I'm very successful at failing...without making resolutions! This year I will have goals. Goals are good to have because you can set a small goal, a medium size goal, or a large goal. Kind of like when you go to Carl's Junior to eat. You can have the regular size meal, the medium size meal, or the large meal. Generally I choose the regular size because I can't finish the large size, I fail. So...maybe that should be a consideration when setting the size of my goals!! Then there is a couple of questions I have to ask myself before setting these goals. What will they be, what size shall I set, and will I give myself the whole year...minus eleven accomplish them? Both good questions. I'm sure you're on the edge just waiting to find out we go!!

My number one goal should be to better my relationship with GOD. Not only should it be, it is. The problem with this goal is that it's one that you can never fully accomplish. I've been told that it doesn't matter how long you have been a christian you always have room for growth. So really...this is a long term, never ending goal. That's good because you can fail repeatedly and try again! Lucky for some of us that God gives us multiple chances for growth. Since becoming a christian maybe I haven't set this goal high enough on the size scale. Then again, maybe I set it too high. Oh well...I will go for the large size anyway.

My number two goal kind of goes along with number one. Bettering my relationship with family and friends. Now, this goal I would consider never ending too. One of the main differences between this goal and the first one is...God knows that you aren't going to get it right a lot of the time and loves you unconditionally. Family and friends, well...they're hoping you get it right occasionally and you're hoping they love you despite your failure. I'm not sure what size to make this goal. I am sure that some of the people, family and friends both, would tell me to ramp it up a bit and try harder. I imagine that if my relationship with God was at the large size then this one would be a whole lot easier. A very good reason too get the number one goal maxed out!! This one I will place on the scale at large but a notch below number one. Only because nothing is as important as my relationship with God.

My number three goal is to get healthy. That's a tough one because my sticktuitiveness has never been very good. In case you don't get that word...I'm not good with finishing things I start. Could be some of my issues with numbers one and two!! This one is also...never ending. I better shoot for at least the medium size on this one. I'm thinking if I can get number one and number two right that number three has got to improve!

Well...I'm going to stop with three goals for now. I'm thinking that they will keep me really busy! Have you noticed a trend here? Every goal ties back to the main one. They are all relationship oriented and they all work better if I get my number one goal under control. If I work on that goal and make it more successful, then all of my goals should be more successful. I up for the fight it's going to take to accomplish these goals? I'm going to give them all my best shot!

One last thing. Earlier tonight when I was writing this post God spoke something to my spirit. He hasn't done that in a long time and it's my fault. What He said to me was this...When you are tight with God you are tight with others! I like that. I started writing this post a joke. I realized once I got into's not a joke! That's actually when God spoke that to me. These are good goals and I really need to work on all of them. I am not good at relationships. They are hard for me and I screw them up a lot. But...with the LORD'S help I am going to do a better job with them beginning now. Above all, I value my relationship with God. I also value my relationship with all my family and friends that I am blessed to have in my life.

Okay...we will see how this goal setting works out for me!!

Philippians 4:13 (New King James Version)

  I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Lose or Gain

At times life's rough no need to lie
then God seems to go away
Don't give up or let go
that's what all the people say
Hang in tough fight the fight
stay in for one more day
Then you start to get your courage up
be tough once again
But wait you hear another voice
that's trying to get in
There it is loud and clear
booming in your head
Oh yes I recognize it now
it's fear and doubt and dread
Who is the master of those lies
the one that binds us so
He is the ruler of the things
of dark and dreadful woe
You push him back then try to breathe
you think you have him whipped
And then he calls you once again
he's using all his tricks
He knows you well
you always fall
you listen to his lies
He tells you...You won't get away
you always have been mine
You start to sink back in the mire
of your stinking life
You're going faster even now
OH Why believe those lies
There is a way to get out
you know it's there somewhere
Come on...Look up...dispel the doubt
the mires to your eyes
Then all at once you feel a spark
of something deep inside
It's way down deep almost lost
Come on don't let it die!!
You're reaching...fighting...trying hard
gasping for some air
The ONE you know is right and true
is calling...He's right there
You're trying to get focused
looking unto the Light
He's standing there right now
His hand stretched out...don't fight!
What will you's up to you
to get back in the game
Eternity is forever and with this life
you Lose or Gain