Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Day 243: September 27, 2016 Children

September 27, 2016
Day 243


My children are a blessing! I am grateful for all the time I have been able to spend with them and yet If I could rewind I would do the following:

~Say no to some of my friends' requests to either go out to eat or spend significant time together. Yes, it is important to maintain friendships, which I have always done. But I would add more time with the family and shave off time with friends.

~Read more to my children. Some really did not get into it at all but I wish I would have forced the issue.

~Walk more with my children - though the honest truth is I always have had a hard time making them do things they did not want to do. Some of my friends were excellent at this and I have seen how their persistence paid off in the end. I probably should have forced more things through.

~Do more outside activities. My husband grew up in the Wilds of Northern Ontario. His former life was filled with outdoor adventure. He had been there and done that. Dang! Missed out on that one.

~I am thankful for all the friends my children had over. 

~I am thankful for all the food that flew out of our house feeding visitors. 

~I am thankful for all the friends my children brought through the doors. Some of my children brought more people home than the others.

~I wish I would have been organized for them. But God made it clear to me over the years that He knew who He was giving His children to! It was to me, the random, bit messy, unorganized one who loves to think.

~I wish dinner time would have been more intriguing for me to think about. The times we have spent around the table have been rich and fun but not as consistent as I would have liked.

~Taught them more hymns. Some of these old hymns have such powerful messages wrapped up in a tune and they are easy to learn and remember.

~Taken them to more local places. Every summer I would make a mental list of events around the area but always when the time came my interest level plummeted.

~Maintained a garden that I made them work in.

~Made bedtime more of an event than an exhausted shrugging of my shoulders.

~Make bedtime a firm time. Who am I kidding? They would not have gone to bed! I never did!

I am so thankful for the relationships I have with my children despite my lack in some significant areas. And I am overwhelmed by the fact that they like to spend more time with me and communicate this to me. Man, what a gift! This is such an honor because each one of them is unique and so fun to hang out with. 

Monday, September 26, 2016

Day 242: September 26, 2016 Growing Old But Maybe Not Wise

September 26, 2016
Day 242

Growing Old But Maybe Not Wise

To be silent when I should say something. To talk when I should be silent. To change my words to suit the situation, the moment, but not my convictions. To commit to a view despite the niggling of my conscience. To sway toward someone's view because they are so convincing. To listen and not give my honest answer. To continue the charade, the facade, though I know better. None of this is right or appropriate or fitting for a woman of my age. I have always said that growing old happens but becoming wise is a choice.

I find myself often slipping into adolescent views, mindsets, actions and habits. I know better. Like eating too many chocolate chip cookies and feeling sick to my stomach is like talking beyond the appropriate parameters and knowing it leads to nauseousness. Peace in my inner person comes from restraining my tongue, exercising wisdom, and choosing to grow old beyond advancement in numbers.

The more I talk when I should talk and shut up when I should shut up, the more my children will gain a deeper and broader understanding of kindness, self control, discernment and keen awareness. Yes, I am a mess. And Yes, I know it. This is moving in the right direction - self evaluation. May I learn to speak and stay quiet based on what the situation requires.

Sunday, September 25, 2016

Day 241: September 25, 2016 Moments From Weekend

September 25, 2016
Day 241  

Moments From Weekend

Living Life with Jesus Christ is a life worth living. Christianity is the most wholistic, reasonable, relational, life giving religion. This is because it is beyond religion and a straight up relationship. When the God of Life, who cares about our life, is allowed back into our life, life is full on adventure even through dark and troubling times.

On the weekends, we live life large in friendships. These three days are often times of relating and this is completely reflective of God's character and nature. Friday night was a send off bonfire (or not) for Dani Cupo who embarks on a new mission in life - YWAM. We sat on her back porch laughing and howling. The people who congregate in the Cupo home are just great people. Their house is full of welcome, warmth and darn good food! 

Saturday Morning was a conference on abuse for church leadership called Leading Through Abuse. It was excellent. Sam and Jill Waters of Still Waters and Pastor Bob Petersheim were the originators of this conference. From 9 am till 3 pm we heard statistics, personal accounts, sermons, ways to help and just plain good advice on domestic violence. The contacts I was able to make for what God has laid on my heart - GPS (God's Protective Spirit - the Body rising up to help those oppressed in our midst) were encouraging. I am anxious to follow up with them.

Paul Pinkerton, Pastor of Redemptive Faith Community Fellowship. His topic "Facing Up!!! To the facts! To the Fight! To the Faith!"

Kathryn texted me while I was still at Conestoga Church and asked if I wanted to walk. YES! when I arrive home I told her let's go to French Creek, my all time favorite state park in my back yard. She is not so much the walker - she is the runner. She is training for a half marathon and walking was on her schedule. I was so down to be with her I left after the conference way sooner than I normally would.

Hopewell Furnace (accessible through French Creek)

Random shot outside the Blacksmith shop. 

We had juicy burgers and sweet potatoes on the grill with family, including a good friend, Whitney, and my father in law. I love eating with family and friends. I love that Jesus loved to eat with his friends as well. He made breakfast for his disciples after He resurrected!

After watching Money Monster with George Clooney and Julia Roberts ( I loved it). Lynn, Geoff, Jesse, and I headed over to Billy Burgers to hear Chris play to a crowd. Ahhh....I love listening to him. Finally at midnight I laid my head to rest.

You can hardly see Chris. He is more to the left of the picture. Back of Geoff's head.
Sundays are first spent at Reading City Church. I just love the people there. In the afternoon Lynn's sister, Wanita, her family, and our family congregated at my father in law's home. We killed a few birds with one stone. We ate together, we celebrated Wanita and Dad's birthday. And we looked at slides to select the pictures that will be placed in the book my father in law is writing. He is an excellent photographer and it is always a pleasure to look at his slides!

In the evening Colby Beiler had asked if he could have a bonfire to celebrate his wife's birthday. That was plain fun to come home to. The men and women at RCC who are Colby and Cait's ages were there and this was a time of fellowship while eating and sittting around a bonfire. We had an encouraging and rich discussion and ended with prayer. Life is good.

I listened to a podcast from Bethel church in Redding, CA. If you have time you might want to sign up for the Bethel App and listen to this podcast of September 18 - Family of God. Bill Johnson speaks of the Body of Christ relating and the need for it to do so.

God is relational. This weekend was full of Him.

Friday, September 23, 2016

Day 240: September 23, 2016 Post Written By Diane Langberg - Helping the Traumatized

Helping the traumatized

Our God describes a good shepherd when He says, “I will feed My flock and … lead them to rest. … I will seek the lost, bring back the scattered, bind up the broken and strengthen the sick” (Ezek. 34:15–16 NASB). As pastors you are shepherds of God’s sheep. It is an eternally significant task and often fraught with difficulties. One of the crucial things necessary for doing your work well is that you must know your sheep. You cannot care for or guide those you do not know. I would like to help you understand some of the people in your churches in a new way.
I have spent over forty years as a Christian psychologist working with trauma of all kinds—sexual abuse, rape, domestic abuse, war, trafficking, and genocide. Given the statistics for sexual abuse alone (one in four girls and one in six boys are sexually abused before they turn eighteen), it seems safe to conclude that all pastors have trauma victims sitting in their pews. Most of them are silent about what they have endured. Trauma occurs when suffering overwhelms normal human coping. Those who are victims live with recurring memories of atrocities both witnessed and endured. The memories infect their sleep, destroy their relationships and capacity to work, torment their emotions. The wounds of trauma are not visible; the effects are.

Trauma has a profound spiritual impact. Trauma raises questions about who God is, His character, His faithfulness, His purposes, and His capacity to keep us. It mutilates hope; it shatters faith; it turns the world upside down. It is important that we understand these struggles and do not silence them or treat them as a failure of faith. When we silence victims of trauma and their questions, we do further damage and, in fact, become an obstacle in the work that God can and wants to do in a life battered by trauma and evil.
People who are suffering long for help and comfort. It is an open door for the church to bend down, like her Lord bent down for us, and enter into traumatized lives with real help and companionship and comfort. As we do we will begin to see, like Israel of old, the trauma wilderness in which many dwell, the valley of Trouble, becoming a door of hope (Hosea 2:14–15). The church of Jesus Christ is called to bring light to dark places, love to damaged souls, and truth about who our God is—He who entered in so that we might know Him and be like Him.

How to enter into traumatized lives

How can you as shepherds enter into traumatized lives and lead your people to do the same? Of first importance is an understanding of what suffering does to humans. If you live with someone full of cancer or battling chronic pain, you know that suffering reduces people. It lessens all of their capacities, not just physically but also mentally, emotionally, relationally, and spiritually. They become less themselves. That is just as true for unseen wounds as it is for physical diseases. It is true for a combat vet, a rape victim, an incest survivor, a domestic violence victim, or a survivor of war. They may look fine, but the mind and heart wounds run deep and affect them profoundly. If we attempt to enter into the life of someone who is reduced, limited, altered by suffering, we must reduce ourselves as well. That is why we are quiet in a hospital room. For those suffering trauma, fewer words, quiet voices, patience, and pausing so they are not overwhelmed is vital to our entering in so we do not bring further harm. In doing so, we are following our Savior who was made flesh, greatly reduced from His eternal glory so as to enter in and become like us. It is, in fact, Christlike to reduce ourselves in the face of another’s suffering. And then, when sufferers are slow to speak, slow to listen, or slow to change, our responses are to also be like our incarnate Savior’s response toward us. It is in part how those who are suffering begin to see, in the flesh, a bit of who our God truly is with His creatures when they are reduced, overwhelmed, helpless, or slow. We bring Him to them by who we are with them in their worst places.
At the same time, a truth I did not see for some time became stunningly clear to me as the years went by. God is always working both sides. I am not just present to sufferers so that they can receive comfort or grow. I am there because God is exposing to me where I am unlike Him, so that I can run to Him and have Him teach me where I am wrong and what He would do in me to make me more like Himself. It is a principle applicable to all of life. All God’s people are called to Christlikeness. Our failures in that area, which are many, teach lies about who He is and damage both us and those with whom we interact. Typically, humans react in painful situations with attempts to change the other person or the circumstances. This can be particularly true when hearing a story of overwhelming evil and suffering. We want the other person to get better so we feel better. But God uses ministry to the traumatized to change caregivers as much as victims.
Following a traumatic experience, every human being must make the heartbreaking adjustment to a new world full of losses. Human beings who experience trauma feel alone, helpless, humiliated, and hopeless. Following trauma, people turn inward, away from life, because the memories and the feelings are all they can handle. This is not wrong; it is necessary for a while. However, eventually if life is to go on, the people must return to the outside world. How can you help people face what is inside, to help them remember well and yet still be able to return to life in a way that is good?

What does healing look like?

Recovery involves a reversal of the experience of trauma. Trauma brings silence because it feels like there are no words to describe what happened. Trauma brings emotional darkness and aloneness because it feels like no one cares and no one could possibly understand. Trauma makes time stand still because we get so lost in what happened we cannot see forward and we have lost hope. There are three main things that must occur to reverse this and bring about recovery. All three must happen.
First, victims need to talk, to tell their story. They may be afraid to do so, slow to speak, uncertain of their words. But as we listen and bear witness to their trauma, we grant them dignity, safety, and comfort. Second, they need to grieve. Trauma always includes loss. The victims’ sense of self is altered, as is their way of living in this world. Trauma shatters faith and mutilates hope. There is much to grieve, so talking eventually must include tears. Third, the victims need time. Both you and the trauma victims will want a quick recovery. Such significant and deep wounds do not recover quickly. The more life-threatening the wound, the slower the recovery (obviously this is true physically as well).
Here are the words of a genocide survivor in Rwanda who lived through unspeakable atrocities and trauma. “I saw only evil. I no longer believed God to be good. The church was not a sanctuary for my family; it was a cemetery. But then you came, you listened, and you heard my broken heart. And now I think I can believe that God too is listening and hears my pain and will be my sanctuary because I have gotten a taste of Him through you.”
The Word was made flesh for you and for me. Now you and I are called to do the same for the world. When you, as a shepherd of the sheep, name the unspeakable things for your people, gently call them to begin to speak the truth about their lives and the wounds they bear. As you study and learn, you can teach your people to go with you into the dark places of great suffering in your pews and around the world.
Jesus went through villages and cities, teaching, preaching, and healing. And “seeing the people,” He was moved with compassion. They were distressed, wounded, bleeding sheep. He saw what others did not see. They were fainting, fleeced by wolves and without a shepherd’s care. In response He said, “The harvest. …” These seem to be contradictory figures, mixed metaphors. A flock of sheep wounded and fainting, and harvest. Harvest is usually about a robust, healthy, flourishing crop. Here is the deep truth about Jesus’ mission. Human need, distress, and trauma constitute harvest for Him and His workers. Where the day is darkest and need is sorest there the fields are white to harvest. Trauma—a mission field of the twenty-first century. He did not say it was hopeless, but that it was a plenteous harvest.
It is my prayer that you will lead His people to follow Him into the dark and difficult places, throwing the shadow of His great glory over the suffering of this earth.
Dr. Diane Langberg
Diane Langberg, PhD, is globally recognized for her work with trauma victims (www.dianelangberg.com). She trains caregivers in responding to trauma and the abuse of power. Her most recent book is Suffering and the Heart of God: How Trauma Destroys and Christ Restores.

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Day 239: September 22, 2016 The Land

September 22, 2016
Day 239

The Land

The land of the living, the Kingdom of God, is where my redeemed spirit walks with eyes wide open. I am alive and active. I roam in this free land asking for healing, forgiveness and repentance. Mountains crumble and fall. Water races out of dry ground. Land overflows with provision. My needs, wants, and desires are satisfied. The storehouses do not require security systems. For this is where giants crash with pebbles.

In this kingdom my hunger is satiated. Thirst is quenched. No one goes without. If I do not have it is because I do not want. I may freely ask, seek, and knock. The land waits for me to traverse, run, jump, seek, hide, and find. It is a land of spiritual exercise with spiritual fitness in sight. Here, there is no slumbering but acquiring, filling, and finding all spiritual blessings. Though this is the land of answers I am required to pursue them. Spiritual energy expended is always extended and renewed. What I bind here is bound on earth.

My prayer time spent in this kingdom is with eyes of wonder, hope, and possibilities. Tuned to His grace and mercy, I hear the voice of my King. The enemy is conquered on every level, at every point, with invisible weapons purchased by a Godman's death. The cache of artillery never ends. The password - will you forgive me, opens wide the storehouse full of weapons for mass construction - to rebuild men and women's infrastructures.

Pornography is slayed. Domestic Violence is manipulated into loving ways and means. Sexual abuse is turned on it head and destroyed. This land is meant for victorious conquest, land regained and controlled. As He fills us with endless visions of hope the King asks us to travel the roads. Hope mounts from Old Kingdom landfill refuse. Everything is used for goodness.

Prayer is running the roads, rafting the waters, scaling the mountains with the King of this kingdom. Many never leave their new room, never seek out new places, or ask the King questions. But this spiritual land is meant to be conquered. This is where real work happens. This is where His will is done and we stake out the territory. In this land we worship in spirit and in truth. Answered prayer travels from this Kingdom to the redeemed planet.

Do you want to be here also? I can show you the Way.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Day 238: September 20, 2016 Conferences and New People

September 20, 2016
Day 238

Conferences and New People 

Meeting people is one of my most favorite things to do and though I begin with a brick wall at conferences (I actually go to so few) it shatters after meeting just one. This past weekend at Collyde was no exception.

Romanita Hairston preached like she meant it, smiled like she felt it, and related like she wanted to. Immediately I connected. My heart resonated with her passion, her theology, and her commitment to Jesus. She ended abruptly leaving me wanting more. I couldn't move. I had to speak to her. I left with her email address and a promise that we could use a pilot program that she felt matched the GPS (Guys/Gals Protecting Siblings/Sisters) vision for the oppressed of the church. Take a look at her bio. She is one amazing woman with five children to boot! With people like Romanita in the world hope rises. Dale and I knew this was an amazing contact and we hope to be in touch with her soon! Check out her blog-Powerofone.

Jonathan Golden was the last speaker of the Justice Track. What a guy, full of mirth, depth, entrepreneur blood, and humor. He blasted the view of "the call" and spoke like my daughters, Robyn and Kathryn - do what you want and trust you are using your gifts. My daughters osmosed this from their dad. I am way too religious, I make myself sick.

Jonathan was common sense about his views, refreshing and motivating all at the same time. I was intrigued by his coffee company Land of a Thousand Hills. This man does not stop. I purchased his book, Be You. Do Good  and then asked his wife to sign. She wasn't sure. I WAS! Her and I then began to speak of many things. I walked away with her email address as I did with Romanita's.

Have I mentioned how much I love conferences? They are the best. The words I eat are many not few. Conferences are full of interesting individuals waiting to make significant connections with one another. Collyde lived up to its name. I am the better woman for attending this. Someday I will learn.

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Day 237: September 18, 2016 Conferences Shomferences

September 18, 2016
Day 237

Conferences Shomferences

Conferences maybe are for you but they are not for me. Sitting with the masses oohing and ahhing......arrggghhhh! Walls upon walls in my heartland barricade against even the thought of one. But when your friend tells you in the spring she bought you a ticket for a conference in the fall you know you have time to BACK OUT. Sure, I'd love to go......

Now, Dale, this friend, is a highly intelligent woman, yet her reading skills are challenged by her ADD tendencies and we are not talking math. Reading my emails? She flat out tells me she doesn't. Reading the finer points of an email? She doesn't do that either. She seems to love this about herself, even sees it as a strength. I'm the stupid one for sending them. Two names were all she needed to see before she gave her credit card information - Francis Chan and Jenni Allen. Done deal. Call Lynne and tell her she's going. But in reality she had no idea what she paid for.

The time came and my heartland walls were still in great condition. But now, post conference, like a fool, all I can talk about is THE CONFERENCE - the conference, the conference, the conference. You get near me with a ten foot pole, I don't even have to see you, I'll start shouting you details. What Dale did not read is that Collyde is geared for Leaders. How unfortunate. This conference is for the Body at large, you would have loved it! Thank you, thank you, thank you Dale - E - O! You da best.

Francis Chan, the author of Crazy Lovestayed on his knees quoting Isaiah 66:2 keenly desiring to tremble at God's word. He also desired to only say what he felt the Holy Spirit wanted him to say. I now must read his book, Reversing Our Tragic Neglect of the Holy Spirit, and check out his website Crazylove.org. He summed up the political scene accurately with a math quiz. Does 3 plus 3 equal five or does 3 plus 3 equal seven. You must choose one answer. Does he nail it or what?

Lysa TerKeurst, I was not looking forward to hearing. Why? I don't know, just wasn't. However, she did it, she whipped me around in milliseconds like a sucker. This woman is a blast. She loves the Word and that alone steals my heart. And she is hilarious. Arrgghhh! How am I able to prejudge someone before I have even heard them? Is it sick telepathy that communicates back threats - this woman is better than you, you don't want to know, you'll get jealous. The pathetic twisted discernment. So, I am definitely going to check out her website, Lysaterkeurst.com and also read her latest book about rejection,Uninvited.

However, I could not wait to hear Jennie Allen. This woman has caused a revolution in the Body and in our local church, RCC. In fact, we were front and center and if I didn't fear the big dudes in the crowd I would have climbed on stage to hug her. I don't worship her I adore her. She heard God say she was to disciple a nation and then she told everyone. Now if that is not bravery, courage, and confidence, what is? As result, many of us have heard the loud call of the Holy Spirit to use our voice. And here all along I thought I had been, NOT REALLY. Instead, I was allowing a patriarchal system dictate my responses. My voice was a whisper, not fitting for a King's daughter. But no mo'.

Richard Stearns who looks like he could bore you in minutes did not. As the leader of World Vision he believes the church is missing a distinct opportunity to offer love to the fifteen million refugees who are mainly comprised of elderly, women and children - these are the terrorists we fear. Listening to him made me want to take The Hole in Our Gospel off my shelf. He made me ponder the thought -  if I saw Jesus as the person in need I would definitely help. And (drum roll) Jesus is the person in need. It says so in Matthew 25:35-20.

I am not finished but my time is up. You are done reading, I can tell. I will relay to you the other three tomorrow.

Friday, September 16, 2016

Day 236: September 16, 2016 Thoughts

September 16, 2016
Day 236

Twin Valley Coffee Gazebo Staff Meeting


God works out conflict between people with beauty and ease. I should always let Him on the job.

The amount of people, situations, things and books, I have to be grateful for far outweigh any of the complaints.

I love the weather. Whether it be hot, cold, damp, cloudy, sunny or overcast. I love change and am glad God does also.

I am so grateful to have an opportunity to learn more of Chemistry with eight fantastic young individuals at Wider. I love to learn. 

I love how God gave me Mark Lammey to conduct the experiments and to explain Chemistry to the students. The audacity to think I was going to do this alone. My confidence level often exceeds my ability. It is who I am. Thank God for Mark - spared once again from a train wreck.

The physical hugs of my children are worth every wakeful night of their younger years.

At age of 54, life just looks better even though it has proved to be more difficult than I imagined. 

It is true that God gives wisdom to those who ask, even when it is the fifth time asking for the same type of wisdom. 

Lf. to Right - Lynn, Sarah, Matt, Chris, Janice, Ricky, Lynne
The graciousness of God ministers deeply to the ungrateful soul of my flesh. 

The more I understand the Body of Christ the more motivated I am to see it move in coordinated steps with the Spirit.

The Shack by Wm. Paul Young is proving to be a beautifully written piece on the Trinity. This should be required reading for every believer. Thank you Mr. Young.

John chapters fourteen, fifteen, sixteen, and seventeen rocked my world and life will never be the same - the Holy Spirit introduced me to all three distinct persons of the God head.

LIGHTS ON - means darkness comes out of the corners. Do not be overwhelmed. God knows who is hiding. It is His favorite Hide and Seek Game. Do not get in the way!

Chris and Matt at Brendan and Becca's wedding
I am thankful for my dear friends and especially for my buddy, Dale Cupo. I am off to a conference, Collyde, with this bundle of energy who drops to her knees and prays on a dime. Can life get any better? Don't think so.

I am also off with her daughter, Dani Cupo, who I have had the privilege of watching mature into a woman of God. 

I do love life.

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Day 235: September 14, 2016 Stadium Lights On

September 14, 2016
Day 235

Stadium Lights On

Scriptural phrases are often like nursery rhymes to me.  I use them, I hear them, I read them, they chant. Then one day stadium lights bolt into my thick soul and the phrase takes on new depth and meaning. My spirit woman begins to understand beyond the common. 

It happened last night. A phrase burst into meaning as worship swirled around my tired body. I dozed in and out of sleep lulled by the worship team at a local house of prayer - EHOP in New Holland at Petra church. All of a sudden, as my body hunched down in the church chair, my spirit woman bolted out of slumber. Fellowship of suffering, fellowship of suffering... the chant was taking on life as the Spirit was streaming meaning to me from the Father. (Philipians 3:10)

I am experiencing a fellowship as I allow my Father to lead me to suffering. For suffering has brought me to a rich fellowship with my sisters and brothers as we cry, hug, huddle and pray, over deep sadness and hurt. We share the truths Jesus is speaking to our hearts and we yearn for more of Him with our encounters. Sadness, suffering, hurt, and pain lean us in toward our Father and to one another. And as He leads us to each other, using the hurt, trauma, and pain, He is building deeper, tighter, and more meaningful relationships. There is no time for small talk.

This fellowship of suffering is rivaling any small group I have ever attended. This fellowship of suffering comes from pain embraced. This fellowship of suffering is rich, deep, penetrating, constructive and building a mountain of hope (Romans 1). We suffer and huddle together to bring to the light, to talk, to not silence one another. We lay games in the ditch, we travel the dusty road together.  We fellowship of sufferers embrace as we learn to care for each other's souls. 

I can think of nothing else as this phrase breaks into a number of clear cut meaningful shards. Only a loving God would make heartache a point of deep and abiding friendship. Only a loving God would allow us to fellowship over suffering. For He suffered so that we might fellowship. 

To my fellow sufferers, I will meet you on the road.

Monday, September 12, 2016

Day 234:September 12, 2016 See Saw

September 12, 2016
Day 234
See Saw

There is an amazing series of see-saw events happening within my spirit. I am understanding God's love to a depth that is thrilling and I am understanding my wretchedness to a depth that is humbling. The more I understand His sacrifice for me, the more amazed I am that He even sacrificed for me. This is not self pity or extreme self deprecation, this is reality.

My best intentions are laced with selfishness. My heart for Jesus stumbles to do well. Narcissism is a word that seems more and more fitting of some of my actions. But Jesus continues to speak to me of my identity. As He shows me my need for His identity, He continues to teach me about His identity.

He hand holds me all the way. The disparity between my goodness and His goodness increases as He draws me closer into His Love Throne room. This is where I will stay for He asks me to.

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Day 233: September 11, 2016 I Need

September 11, 2016
Day 233

I Need

I am needy and sometimes I act in a way that makes you think I am not, for I would rather not have you see me this way. I am helpless and I often need others. But I would prefer to do it myself. Jesus, however, crashes into this self sustaining quest. CRASHES IN.

He wraps His loving arms around me and smiles at my need to hide. He smiles at my preference for my self to help my self. He knows I need Him. He knows I am helpless. Yet, He waits until
I ask.

Friday, September 9, 2016

Day 232: September 9, 2016 Diversity Dynamic

September 9, 2016
Day232:                    Diversity Dynamic

Yes, birds of a feather flock together but NEWSFLASH, we are not birds. We are diverse humans distinctly different. Not one thumb print belongs to more than one individual, instead we each have our very own. Humanity was meant to multiply and spread. To clump in unity building an edifice in honor of togetherness, above reliance on God, was halted in the early stages. God officially put an end to group think when he switched it up with the language disarray. Where once they understood they now were confused. For to depend on one another was not what God wanted. All He wanted was for them to depend on Him, looking to him for direction within their inter-related relationships.

More churches need to get this. That it is more about reliance on God than on the practices and traditions from ages past. The church has nothing in common with a social club, there is nothing chummy about putting into practice the teachings of scripture. In fact it is plain lonely. Coming together to build something for ourselves is common amongst churches. And they are excellent at knowing how to slap a spiritual heading on the project. Legalism springs from a desire to control the look and feel of the group. God revels in diversity. He explodes it. For He is not concerned with the look but rather with the ability of each one to follow Him. One never knows where He will lead.

Thursday, September 8, 2016

August 231: Scary And Powerless

September 8, 2016
Day 231

Scary And Powerless

Tonight, our pastor, Vince, spoke of the authority and identity we have in Jesus Christ. He was telling us that though the enemy is lurking and wants us to think he is massive, the reality is -the enemy is defeated. Vince was calling us to a rest. We do not walk towards the victory. We walk out of the victory. We are able to rest for Jesus has accomplished, completed, and finished everything that needed to be taken care of for our redemption and salvation. Out of nowhere a bat flits across the ceiling.

The enemy might lack power to destroy but it does a good job of distracting and leading us to self destruct. This small creature distracted an entire congregation.  Peace became impossible. Vince was trying to assess our ability to focus. We were unable. The bat had no obvious flight plan. It moved here and there moving everyone's heads right along with it. Bibles, scarves, and sweaters were our shields. The bat was clearly confused. And so were we.

But as soon as it had flown it, it flew right out! I knew there was something to this. On the way home I began to see the moment for what it was worth. The enemy is like a small harmless bat flitting here and there with no sense of organization. It serves only to distract. But fear rises. Bats reputations precede them. And we give bats more power than they deserve. They can distract but they can not destroy, only lead us to destroy.

I choose to see the enemy as a simple bat. Give it a door and out it goes! And that is exactly what happened.

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Day 230: September 6, 2016 Living Small in the Grand Space

September 6, 2016
Day 230

Living Small in the Grand Space

Jesus forgive me for living small in your grand expanse.
Forgive me for living small in the field of grace that offends even the offenders -
Who knew they would be here also.
Forgive me for living small with such an astronomical debt forgiven me.
Forgive me for living small when your death and resurrection allows me to soar spiritual galaxies.
Forgive me for living small when the currency you provide needs no accountant.
Forgive me for living small when you promise to be faithful.
Forgive me for living small when you grant me the desires of my heart.
Forgive me for living small when you outstretch your hand to hold mine.
Forgive me for living small when you bring me to a new land and tell me it is mine.
Forgive me for living small when your love has no earthly container large enough but chooses my heart.
Forgive me for living small when your options are unlimited.
Forgive me for living small when you tell me you will
attend to my daily needs.
Forgive me for living small when the good deeds you prepared for me before the creation of the world are beyond exciting and thrilling.
Forgive me for living small when you offer the adventure of a life time.
Forgive me for living small when you provided love for me to offer others.
Forgive me for living small when you wanted to fellowship with just me.
Forgive me for living small in your grand expanse.
Fill my spiritual eyes with wonder that pulls me deeper into loving you.

Sunday, September 4, 2016

Day 229: August 4, 2016 Two Thoughts Aligned - Love When This Happens

August 4, 2016
Day 229

Two Thoughts Aligned - Love When This Happens

Do I understand the power I have? Not at all. Do I understand the force within me for the good of the church and likewise the world? No! Do I sit on spiritual energy that is waiting to be used? YES! Do I understand where I stand spiritually. I forget all the time. This week two truths crashed and aligned, forcing me to put them together. The first, Jesus makes intercession for us. (Hebrews 7:25) The second, the church is the Body of Christ. (Ephesians 2:22) Align these two and you have the Church interceding for the Church. For we are the fullness of His Body. Therefore, intercession is aligning ourselves with what our dear Savior is already doing.

He always intercedes for those who come to God through Him, therefore, we stand and intercede for those who come to God through Him. And like always there is no pressure, the kind we see on the enemy's side, but rather a privilege laid out before us, a nail pierced hand outstretched inviting us to come and do likewise - pray.

We are the privileged ones able to represent the One and Only Jesus Christ. Is this for real? Am I missing something? I did not wait in line for a VIP pass. I did not have to answer a quadrillion questions to see if I would be an approved ambassador. I did not have to first get my sin issue ironed out before I was allowed the privilege of standing with my Jesus. Jesus, the perfect one stands in our place before the Father. We are privileged to pray, to intercede, due to an honest man's death for us.

The only power we have is Jesus Christ. The only answer we have for every prayer we pray is Jesus Christ. The only entity that fills all and is everywhere is Jesus Christ. The Church is Christ's Body. Coming together to pray is who we are. It is what we do. And it is what we will always do. So let's do it! Let's pray Thy Kingdom Come Thy Will be done on earth as it is in heaven and know where we are, the throne room of heaven. Let's do this knowing who we are, the Church. Let's do this knowing who makes it possible to ask the High King for anything, Jesus the High Priest. Go for it! 

Friday, September 2, 2016

Day 228: September 2, 2016 Good Tunes

September 2, 2016
Day 228

Good Tunes

Published on Feb 13, 2016
"Seen" written and performed by Brenna Carnuccio, featuring and developed with musician Christopher Burkholder.

To collaborate is magic. These two friends have created some magical moments. Enjoy.

Published on Jul 2, 2015
Christopher Burkholder and Brenna Carnuccio performing "Walk The Line" by Johnny Cash.

I love listening to good music! 

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Day 227: September 1, 2016 Too Close to Home

September 1, 2016
Day 227

Too Close to Home

Christopher Burkholder's Original: Porn Star
Please keep writing son!

At the risk of giving information to the wrong person, there are more of you who need to commit to prayer what I am about to post.

October 15 at the Holiday Inn there will be an event called a Friction party, specifically called - Satan's Lair. The description goes something like this, ."..Satan's Lair October 15th  Morgantown, PA Hotel Takeover, So Hot the Devil will Sweat! No Families, No Vanillas to ruin the sexy vibe!  Complete Hotel Takeover. This is our biggest, sexiest event of the year! Always a sell out! Rooms at host hotel will book weeks before event so do not wait and get stuck at overflow hotel! We use 2 hotels because the event is that big!...."

I kinda feel sheltered and out of touch. I believe I will keep it that way. This is grievous knowing this event will do nothing to establish solid individuals let alone families. Instead, in the heart of an extremely fertile area there will be bad seed planted with a crop of withered plants. There will be doors opened that will take years to close. The weekend will cause heartache. The ramifications will ripple for decades.

But God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whosoever believes in Him will have eternal life. (John 3:16) The freedom offered is to all.  Let's pray for life on October 15th.  May God be glorified.

May you use this information wisely.