Walking in Power, Love and Peace

Good morning!  I was asking the Lord for understanding about some things. Some friends have suffered some pretty devastating blows recently and I just couldn’t wrap my head around it.  I heard the Spirit say to my heart, you must draw near to me.  Illness can’t come on Me, so if you are in my arms, it can’t get to you.

Psalm 91:9-10 says, “Because you have made the Lord who is my refuge, even the Most High, your dwelling pace, no evil shall befall you nor shall any plague come near your dwelling.”

A commentary inidcates that the Lord is describing an abiding defense against inflicted disease, but the promise is conditioned upon making the Lord our true refuge and habitation.  The word refuge in Hebrew means a shelter, a place of trust.  Dwelling place means a retreat.  It describes a security of intimately dwelling together as in marriage.  When we make the Lord our refuge and habitation by trusting Him, taking our cares, fears and needs to Him, seeking His counsel, spending times of refreshing with Him and by loving Him closely every day, we enter into a sheltered place of promise regarding health.  This truth safeguards against making prayer for healing only a recourse for emergencies.

Now don’t get all condemned and start arguing.  That’s not my intent.  What I got from this and the rest of Psalm 91 is that God is complely merciful and full of grace toward us.  He wants us to set our love upon Him and as a result He promises deliverance and honor and protection.  He longs for us to stop and look into His eyes, to hear His heart daily, to dwell there.  I think this gives me hope.  I want to set my eyes on the Lord, to seek His face and share my life with Him.  I believe His promises are for me today, not some obscure myth that applied to people in a story.  So I press on, I want to apprehend what He has promised, what He has in mind for my life.  I want to go forward in the power and might of the God of Glory who sets me free and gives me purpose in peace.  And yeah buddy, in case you’re wondering, it really is for real, life doesn’t have to be a spin of a wheel.  The steps of a righteous man are ordered by the Lord.  Thanks Father.

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THE SLOW DANCE

THE SLOW DANCE

A friend asked me to make 2 large tailored box cushion slip covers for her L shaped kitchen nook bench seats. I got all excited and jumped all over the chance to do it. I’m pretty good at sewing so even though I’d never done box construction before, I was confident. The way I do things like this is to spend some time figuring it out in my mind because I’m scared to death of cutting fabric and ruining the project. Other than that, I trust my own process. Did that, made the pattern and cut it out. There’s a top, a bottom and a long center strip containing the 45″zipper, that joins them together. I encased piping in strips of the fabric and sewed that to the top and bottom edges. All that was left was to prepare the center strip and sew it in. At least that’s what the 3 tutorials on UTube said… I sewed the top to the center strip. Yay, awesome. I unzipped it and sewed the bottom onto the other side of the strip. It didn’t fit. The corners didn’t match up. I ripped it out and started over. Same mess. I ripped that out and figured what needed to be tweaked. But no. I ripped that out and at this point I’m 2 weeks into it and so stressed out I’m imagining in my head my friend hating it and ending our friendship. The mean little voice in my head is screaming, “failure, failure, epic failure”! There’s no more fabric at the fabric store, that was the end of it. There’s no way to fix it! I am completely mortified at this point so I humbled my no longer confident self and went to see what the local upholstery guy had to say. He was so nice to me, complimented my sewing and just suggested a few tips for making it all come together. He was so encouraging, just what I needed.

The next day, I was praying in the morning and the Lord just dropped the most awesome inspiring things into my spirit that I’m going to share with you below. I was writing everything down that He was pouring into me when He stopped and said, “Carol, by the way, here’s how you finish that slipcover”. So I ran upstairs singing His praises, sat down at my sewing machine and 6 hours later had a perfect cushion done! Perfect! Exactly what the Lord told me!

Praise and worship opens the door to revelation It gets your mind under control, your soul at peace and your spirit filled to overflowing with the joy of the Lord. Productivity follows. The focus has to be on God, not the project, not the problem, the calling or what you think you should be doing. If all your focus is on worship and seeking Him, His heart, His face; then He puts the ideas and the ability in you. He equips you.

Seek not where you’re going with God, just seek God. By seeking the project, I wasted time, I got confused and stressed out. I lost confidence and just kept striving only to fail. Sounds like the enemy to me. When I went back to getting quiet before God, worshipping Him, thanking Him for the trial and the victory that was sure to come; He revealed it in all His glory and grace. A trial, a failure, a redemption, a blessing and a victory! Blessed be God who always leads us in triumph whether it’s a sewing project or a life calling to do something way bigger than we can ever ask or imagine. It’s true that He does give us everything we need for life and godliness. Look for it. He’s in it.

The Lord showed me this amazing picture about living in the world today. “There is a difference between living this life by coping with the degredation of society, the demise of the family, the end of democracy, the sleepiness of the church, confusion, deception and your grief over all of it. There is a diffence between living with it and living victoriously through it. Seek victory. Rejoice! The only way to live in victory is to live in Christ Jesus. The Holy Spirit guides, protects and comforts. Look at the book of Acts. The Holy Spirit came with demonstrations of power. He hasn’t changed.”

“Ask Him to show you how to do everything. Stop trying to do things without Me. Condition yourself to do everything with Me, in Me. Step by step, missing nothing along the way. It’s a slow dance. We move together, glide in one another’s arms. That is joy overflowing. That is life and peace. Dance through life with Me as your partner and there will be no lack of anything physical or spiritual. Stay humble, let Me lead, I know the way.”