Monthly Archives: July 2012

Lessons on the Run

Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss it you will land among the stars.”
-Les Brown

My running lately has been very up and down. Sometimes I run. Sometimes I don’t. Ironic thing is, I love it. Not every single moment. But love the feeling, especially when I’m done. It just feels good. Sweat dripping off my face, heart rate going through the roof, God downloading to me messages through the music.

Today was no different just a quick 20-minute run. I even caught myself tearing up through Black Eyed Peas “I got a Feeling that tonight’s gonna be a good good night” (Hey, don’t judge, it gets me running! And I once heard Shelia Walsh came out on a Harley to that song!). Needless to say, I can’t write out everything God showed me on that run, because some was personal, but He gave me some lessons through the run I wanted to share.

I had already planned on it being a short run, with all I have on my plate today. And I allowed myself to have an easy run, because after all, I haven’t been running a lot lately. The Lord asked me if I could run fast and hard even if just past one house. Would I allow myself a little discomfort instead of always letting myself off the hook? Okay Lord- but just one house. I ran hard, through the grunting and discomfort, I actually ran myself hard past several houses.

Lesson #1- Spend time with the Lord, even if it’s been a while. Just like our work out routine can sometimes feel like a roller coaster, our time with the Lord can too. But don’t let that stop you from pressing in and pressing on! I’ve heard people say, “Why start working out now, it’s been years?” One day is better than no days! You have to start somewhere. Take a few minuets today to read His Word and hang out with Him. Don’t listen to that voice that says it’s been too long, what’s the point? You will be so glad you did!

Lesson #2- God wants to use you. He wants you to be able to push yourself sometimes to see what you can really do. I knew the Lord was with me. I knew it was something He was telling me to do. That’s key. Don’t step out unless you feel like it’s him pushing you out of the boat.

I then was telling myself I was just going to do a quick run, so I saw my house ahead and was mentally preparing to stop. The Lord asked me if I could just do one more block. I knew I had not run to my full potential, but I was okay with that, because, after all, I had much to do. The Lord said again, “Will you do just one more block?” “Okay, but I’m really okay with being done.” So I did one more block, which turned in to one more, which turned in to… you guessed it, one more.

Lesson #3- Don’t take easy street. Sometimes we get so use to letting our self off the hook and taking the easy, comfortable road that we never really see God’s full potential in us. He showed me this morning that the things He has for me are far greater than anything I could ever imagine, but I’ve got to stop letting myself be okay with all of my many excuses. “I’m too tired. It’s too hard. It’s too uncomfortable. There are so many people already doing what I feel called to do, am I really even needed? Maybe I’m just making these things up in my head and I should just be happy with where I am at and stay here.” He never calls us to easy and comfortable- but He has promised that He will fulfill the desires of our hearts. Psalms 37:4- Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart. And will this journey be pain free? John 16:33- I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.

What is it that the Lord’s been asking you to do that might be uncomfortable? Are there steps that He is asking you to take that will require a dying to self and a sacrifice? Are there dreams in your heart that you have specifically asked, “Lord, if this is not from you, please take this cup from me” but still find those dreams burning with in you? The Lord is asking you today, “Will you run the extra mile?” “Will you go the distance?” “Will you keep going even when you’re a little bit uncomfortable?” “Will you trust me and run this race just a little bit more and see what I can do though you?” And ultimately, “Will you trust me?”

 Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, 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- Hebrew 12:1

Winds of Change

MP900149003

It feels a little scary

The wind that’s blowing in

It gets me up

Out of my seat

And like a blaze

Comes crashing in

Without a sound

Its presence is here

And no invitation is needed

My heart is pounding

My stomach is turning

The unknown just sends me

churning

But to be fully alive

Is what you’ve called us to

To follow you, no matter

Where that leads

I will answer the call

With a knocking

In my knees

And trembling in my voice

Because change has entered

The scene

And he’s waiting for me

Waiting for me step out of the boat

And quite possibly

Maybe for the first time even

To truly live

Past the gates of comfort

Through the known

And into the sea

Of destiny

Carry me Lord

As I step out of the boat

Trembling and swaying

I can hardly see through the fog

But you see what lies ahead

And saw this moment

Before its coming

So welcome

Change

Pull up a chair

Fear

I’m jumping in anyways

I’ve got to live this life

Authentic and true

To be the best me

That my God has called me to be

 

 

 

 

 

 

These Dreams

When I first thought

The perfect life

I imagined comfort

I imagined a place that

Was predictable

And everything was known

A place that was run by a schedule

And all was made

To fall into place

Like clockwork

The checks would come in

Exactly the same

Each month

You in your office

Me in the house

Our roles perfectly

Worked out

Clock in

Clock out

Day in and day out

The life would be quite

Simple

With little change to fear

But as the years have gone by

I realized God made you differently

A box could not hold you in

As much as you tried to make it work

I realized that your walls were caving in

Breathe, you could not

As the walls became more constricting each day

I realized you could not

Be put into a box

And your dreams were bigger than

I thought

I enjoyed my security

While dreaming of what stepping out

Might look like

And you took me there

To dream a dream

Bigger than my eyes could see

Bigger than my fears and insecurity

The shouts of the naysayers grew louder and louder in my head

You’ll never make it

In this economy you need more than a dream

You should be happy with a decent paying job

You’re in ministry

That’s what you want, isn’t it?

In this economy, are you crazy?

But I had to know that God was calling us

To something different

Not necessarily bigger or better

But different

Fitting for the mold that He had made us to be

It’s not an everyone mold

And it certainly isn’t safe

But I realized that trying to hold you down

Holding us down

Was not the answer

And we weren’t called to comfortable

We were never called to easy

We can’t live someone else’s dream

We must step into our own

Why did God give us dreams bigger than ourselves?

Why would He do such a thing?

Because He knows it will have to be Him that

Ultimately fulfills these dreams

Through us

It gives me no greater joy than to

Take this journey with you

And explore whatever

God has for us

 

 

The Burden

woman holding bible

This battle that rages within me is far too deep to see

The confusion in my heart is for only you and me

For I cannot stand against thee

Only with thy hand in mine

For if I thought you might leave me

I’d be lost like hours of time

But your vow was forever

Eternity was promised

And so I take my life in yours

knowing I won’t be abolished

You understand my humanness

And my weakness you see

You speak to the raging within me

With one word, in peace I breathe

This heaviness I carry is far too wide for me

But you my Lord have taken it

When you paid that penalty

There is no way to repay you

For the love that bled for me

Nothing I could work out

That would ever set me free

Freedom comes when one can see

That this death was paid for you and me

Now off this burden

Lay to rest weary soul

To you my Savior

I give you control

I can no longer carry it

Or make it on my own

So I give you this life

Releasing my strife

Rugged and worn

Blistered and bruised

I am nothing but lost

Unless by you I am used

 

 

 

 

 

Don’t Be a Worn-Out Alligator!

Have you ever watched the show on Animal Planet called Gator Boys? My boys love this show. I’ve watched a few with them. The Gator Boys work in Florida and receive many calls to come out right away and remove a gator from private property. They then will release them into their natural habitat to live out the rest of their days there.

They don’t just go up to an alligator and apprehend these large beasts. They must first tire them out. They pretend to put a hat in their mouth, they get them to do lots of circles, and really, whatever else they can do to get these gators just plain worn out. Once the gators are tired, it’s much easier for them to catch the gator off guard, jump on their backs, tape up their mouths, and off they go.

I think the enemy works a lot like this in our own lives, don’t you? We go and go and work and work and eventually our guard is down. We’re tired and worn out. I believe the enemy loves a tired and worn out Christian. That’s when we’re liable to snap at someone or get so ‘busy’ that we neglect our time alone with the Lord. I can just hear the enemy thinking, “Keep going, stay busy.. just a little while longer and I’ll have you right where I want you… worn out!”. It’s in that time that we tend to listen to the enemy’s voice instead of the Lords. We hear things like “This is so unfair” or “I wish I didn’t have to be here or do this”. When you are tired and weak, careful who’s voice you’re listening to. You could just be past due for a little rest and time in God’s Word to refresh your soul.

God gives us a great model and example for living. Gen. 2:2- By the seventh day God had finished the work he had been doing; so on the seventh day he rested from all his work. I’ve seen many times where people just work and work and then their body is weak and their defenses are down and they end up getting sick and are forced to stop and take a few days of rest. Wouldn’t you just rather rest while feeling good? I know I would!

I encourage you today, don’t be captured like a wild alligator ready to give up the fight! Sometimes staying in the game means taking time out for you and not wearing yourself out! You will be a much more effective witness and a lot less likely to chomp someone’s head off! Amen!

Hebrews 4:10- For anyone who enters God’s rest also rests from his own work, just as God did from his.