Single Life

Something More

“Stop hoping and start hoping!” – Dr. John Avant

My pastor shared this point two weeks ago in his message about God’s song for our country. His point was addressing the fact that we need to stop placing our hope in man and ultimately place it in the Lord as the only source for turning our country around. However, his point has resonated in every area of my life. I am so quick to place my hope in the things around me versus in the One who created me.

Far too often, I place my hope in the things around me …

I hope that this “new diet” will be the long awaited answer to me finally becoming the dream person that I have wanted to be vs. having to put in the work that I know I need to in order to be healthy.

I hope that the right filter on my latest selfie will soften my imperfections and catch the eye of the right guy on Christian Mingle vs. working on filtering my words and actions through the love of Christ so that I reflect Him more than my “ideal image.”

I hope to have that or be this by a certain point in life vs. seeking to give of myself more to others.

I hope to find love and sense of worth in the eyes of Mr. Right vs. finding my true worth in the fact that I am a child of God. That’s enough.

Trying to find my sense of worth through the eyes of a man puts way too much pressure on a fellow.¬†I mean I may be looking for the Sully to match my Dr. Quinn. The Walker, Texas Ranger to my Alex Cahill. The Zack Morris to my Kelly Kapowski (ok … I am stretching there.) The Isaac to my Rebekah or better yet the Abraham to my Sarah as we are already pushing it in our ages at this point. ūüôā

In all seriousness, though, I realized this when a gentleman shared that we would be better off as friends. While it was humbling to realize that he was not attracted to me after a few dates and a few weeks of talking, the Lord allowed me some “pretty” moments but showed me that my ultimate satisfaction isn’t to be based on what is reflected back to me in the mirror. No, I long to possess the beautiful qualities of the Fruit of the Spirit and to have a heart like His. I’ll still work on my outer shell but I definitely want to focus more on the inside because that is what I am truly attracted to when it comes to the opposite sex.

These are just some ways that I have been placing my hope in the wrong things and please know, ¬†I am not condemning myself but merely sharing how the Lord has been opening my eyes to the areas that He wants to saturate with Himself. And is not it just like the Lord that part of my Bible reading for this month is focused on beauty? The other part is on patience and perseverance … not so thrilled about that one. Just kidding. ūüôā

What are some areas of your life that He wants to saturate? Areas of doubts or fears? Are you replacing His presence in your life with tangible things that can’t really satisfy but only offer a temporary fix?

“Rest in God alone, my soul,
for my hope comes from Him.
He alone is my rock and my salvation,
my stronghold; I will not be shaken.
My salvation and glory depend on God, my strong rock.
My refuge is in God.
Trust in Him at all times, you people;
pour out your hearts before Him.
God is our refuge.¬†Selah” Psalm 62:5-8

So I am purposing to place my hope in Christ alone as that is the best place to for my hope to rest in and will leave everything else, the hope for something more, up to Him.

Romans 5,3-5
Romans 5:3-5

I love you all!

Random Thoughts

It’s Our Problem

I’ll be honest, I want to look the other way. I want to hide under my pillow. I want to close my eyes because I do not have the answers to what is happening in our country. This isn’t something that you can slap an “this is the end times” band-aid on … that works for the political climate but not for the senseless brutality and violence we have seen in Baton Rouge, Minnesota and Dallas. Innocent lives are being lost on both sides and the fact that there are even sides to begin with is despicable.

Genesis 1:27 makes it pretty clear,

So God created man in His own image;
He created him in the image of God;
He created them male and female.”

There is no delineation of “race” … no, the separation does not come until sin enters the picture and changes our view of everything. I am not going to preach about the sin issue in our country because as my pastor said this past Sunday, “Stop hoping unholy people will lead us to a holy place.” No, I am going to speak to the sin in our churches because that is where this issue of racism is continuing to fester.

This past Spring, I took a class on Multicultural Counseling and had to take a long hard look at myself. I discovered prejudices I didn’t even know I had towards almost¬†everyone who is different from me – I’m talking every¬†color, religion, sexual orientation … you name it. There was some level of “me vs. them” present in my heart. The majority of it was rooted in ignorance and fear of someone being different from me. I was heart broken and convicted over this. The Lord has been working this out of me as I have taken the time to learn about different cultures and He brought people from all walks of life into my life for me to get to know. And it has been eye opening for me.

Until, those in the pews of our churches take a long hard look at their souls and allow the Lord to sift out the deep seeded fears and ignorance that has taken up residence and truly repent then this problem will persist. Innocent African-Americans will continue to die and innocent police officers will die out of retaliation.

“Do not take revenge or bear a grudge against members of your community, but love your neighbor as yourself; I am Yahweh.” Leviticus 19:18

I do not have children but I have children of all¬†colors that I love who are very precious to me and we can do better for them. We¬†must¬†do better for them. It’s time for the Church to stop expecting the Government to take care of this problem and address it ourselves. Legislation can’t fix this but sanctification can.

Romans 6

What should we say then? Should we continue in sin so that grace may multiply? 2 Absolutely not! How can we who died to sin still live in it? 3 Or are you unaware that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death? 4 Therefore we were buried with Him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, so we too may walk in a new way of life. 5 For if we have been joined with Him in the likeness of His death,we will certainly also be in the likeness of His resurrection. 6 For we know that our old self  was crucified with Him in order that sin’s dominion over the body may be abolished, so that we may no longer be enslaved to sin, 7 since a person who has died is freed from sin’s claims. 8 Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with Him, 9 because we know that Christ, having been raised from the dead, will not die again. Death no longer rules over Him. 10 For in light of the fact that He died, He died to sin once for all; but in light of the fact that He lives, He lives to God. 11 So, you too consider yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus.

12 Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body, so that you obey its desires. 13 And do not offer any parts of it to sin as weapons for unrighteousness. But as those who are alive from the dead, offer yourselves to God, and all the parts of yourselves to God as weapons for righteousness. 14 For sin will not rule over you, because you are not under law but under grace.

15¬†What then? Should we sin because we are not under law but under grace? Absolutely not! 16¬†Don‚Äôt you know that if you offer yourselves to someone¬†as obedient slaves, you are slaves of that one you obey‚ÄĒeither of sin leading to death or of obedience leading to righteousness?17¬†But thank God that, although you used to be slaves of sin, you obeyed from the heart that pattern of teaching you were transferred¬†to, 18¬†and having been liberated from sin, you became enslaved to righteousness.19¬†I am using a human analogy¬†because of the weakness of your flesh.¬†For just as you offered the parts¬†of yourselves as slaves to moral impurity, and to greater and greater lawlessness, so now offer them as slaves to righteousness, which results in sanctification. 20¬†For when you were slaves of sin, you were free from allegiance to righteousness.¬†21¬†So what fruit was produced¬†then from the things you are now ashamed of? For the end of those things is death. 22¬†But now, since you have been liberated from sin and have become enslaved to God, you have your fruit, which results in sanctification‚ÄĒand the end is eternal life! 23¬†For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

First, we need to be called to true¬†repentance by opening our eyes to the hate that we are allowing to fester in our country and our churches by acknowledging what’s in our hearts.

Second, we need to educate ourselves on each other’s culture, be present in each other’s lives and stop saying that we don’t see color because color is¬†beautiful.

Third, we need to love like Jesus or stop claiming to be His followers because the country isn’t buying it.

Just because we may not live in Baton Rouge, Minnesota or Dallas does not mean it’s not our problem. It is. It’s our problem. And it’s time we, God’s people, do something about it.