Are You Good?

“He who finds a wife finds what is good and receives favor from the Lord” (Proverbs 18:22, NIV).

Alonzo

Solomon may have been a womanizer, but this particular verse really hit the nail on the head. Ladies, do you know you are a good thing? Do you know that you are the embodiment of favor?

When I was thinking about what to write today (at 12 am, mind you), this verse came to my mind– it is popular, but I am never sure where it is exactly; but thank God for the Holy Spirit for directing to the correct passage! I read this verse and it dawned on me that I am a good thing and I bring favor to my husband. That’s pretty awesome!

Some of you may say, “But you’re not good. Even Jesus questioned someone calling Him good in Luke 18:19.” And I will say you’re right. In and of myself, in my own human nature, I am not good; far from it, even. But, because I am in Christ and He is in me, because God Himself lives in me through the Holy Spirit, dare I say that I am indeed good?

I looked at the verse in different versions to see how “good thing” was translated. For the most part it remained “good thing”, but NLT used “a treasure”, and NET used “enjoyable”.  So, ladies, know today that you are a good thing, but only through the grace and power of Jesus Christ.

To be a good thing, you need to look at the life of Jesus because we know God through Him (John 14:6). What does it mean to be good? Assess yourself; compare yourself to Jesus. Do you love? Do you forgive seventy times seven times? Do you desire and allow only God’s will to be done? Are you self sacrificing? Do you teach or lead those around you in the way of the Lord? Do you obey God at all times? Are you uncompromising when it comes to the things of God?  Are you clothed in humility? Are you steadfast and persevering in suffering? Are you prayerful? How’s your faith? Do you return all glory to God or take some for yourself? Are you a servant? Are you about your Father’s business? These are just some of the things that come to mind when I look at Jesus and who He is.

Practically, too, ask yourself: can I cook? can I keep a clean house? can I pray for my husband? can I support my husband? can I submit to my husband? can I work hard? can I get up early in the morning to prepare breakfast for my family? can I serve the poor? how’s my intuition? can I respect my husband? can I raise my children in the way of the Lord?

Ladies, to be a good thing is a high calling. My question is: are you up for it? God called you a helper (Genesis 2:18) for your man. You have a high calling on your life as a servant of God, a woman, a wife, a mother, a sister, and a friend.  But understand that you cannot do it on your own! It takes the grace of God and His grace is definitely sufficient for you (2nd Corinthians 12:9).

Another revelation that I got from reading this verse is the fact that you are a favor from God to your husband! You are that special gift from God! Like, what?!?! So, yeah, you’re kind of a big deal. Relish in that!

Single? Married? Spinster? You are a big deal. You are favor from God to your brothers, husbands, etc. So, whenever the devil tries to get you in a mindset that will get you down, know that you are good because God lives in you, you are a gift someone out there is waiting and praying for; you are favor, someone cherish-able, love-able, admirable.

Are you good?! I know I am!

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God Does the Impossible

” ‘All the trees of the field will know that I the Lord bring down the tall tree and make the low tree grow tall. I dry up the green tree and make the dry tree flourish’ ” (Ezekiel 17:24, NIV).

I admit that I’m not really a fan of the Old Testament– but I will say that my journey through it has been very good. I have never read Ezekiel but this morning I opened to a random part in the Bible and landed on Ezekiel 17 and the last verse really stood out to me. In all honesty, I don’t even remember what the chapter was really about, but I have been thinking about verse 24 all day.

Before going to sleep at 3 am, I watched the trailer for a movie coming up next March. In it, this little girl was really sick but then something happened to her and she was healed; the mother asked how that was possible. I’m guessing the movie is about faith. Faith in God can do the impossible– but it’s not really the faith; it’s God working in the background and our faith receiving it.

So, I’ve been asking myself why. Why does God do the impossible? Why does God change the “natural” order of things?  The answer I keep coming back to is: Because He can! He is God and He can do whatever He wants. This pastor said in a sermon, that God can do eleven months’ work in a day and overwhelm you! He is God. He can even change the way things are supposed to be, according to the world and our own understanding. That verse really hit me because God Himself said that He will bring down the tall tree and raise the low one. I took that and I applied it to my own life. God can make me the president of a company one day; He can make me the manager of an organization one day; He can give me all my heart’s desires, especially for this year, today if He wants to. On the other hand, He can also allow me to experience what Job experienced.

But why would God do these things? I mean, He doesn’t have to prove Himself to us. I believe He does it out of love. You know, God’s love and faithfulness is everlasting! He cannot help Himself but love us! So, if God takes you from having $2 in your account to having $2,000,000 in a matter of 24 hours, it’s because He loves you! And if He decides to reverse that and make you go from having $2,000,000 to having $2 in a matter of 24 hours, it is also out of love!

So, why does God do the impossible? Because He can and because He wants to show His love, power, strength, faithfulness, majesty, etc. to me and you. One thing I have always loved about God, even before I gave my life to Him, is the fact that He doesn’t lord the fact that He is God over us. However, He is always reaching out to each of us, one way or the other. May we recognize His reaching out and accept Him!

Amen!

Jesus Christ, M.S, Psy.D, D.D, G.C

“I will praise the Lord, who counsels me; even at night my heart instructs me” (Psalm 16:7, NIV).

Jesus the counselor

This is me Jesus’ feet, crying, begging, pleading, praying, screaming, bawling. I hate it. I have always thought that being at the feet of Jesus is supposed to be in the form of worship like the woman who anointed Jesus’ feet (John 12:1-11). I look at the picture and I see Jesus consoling a woman who needs a comforter, a counselor. Counseling is my profession– I speak things that are not (yet) as though they are (Romans 4:17)– and by God’s grace I am a good one, AMEN; but, even counselors need counselors because we don’t know everything. The Bible promises us in Isaiah 9:6 that Jesus is the ‘Wonderful Counselor”, which is good for me because this counselor needed one yesterday.

A moment of honesty: I HATE MY LIFE right nowNothing seems– seems– to be going well for me; I have been feeling as if I am an afterthought to God; I have been wondering to myself when will I get a break? When is my breakthrough coming? When will people rejoice with me? I have been feeling less than. For a while I was telling myself that I can’t be feeling those things because an unhappy Christian is an oxymoron– but we are people, too. So I have plastered smiles on my face as if I didn’t feel dead inside– amnesia or death seemed reasonable to me. In my distress I understood what David meant when he said, “I am worn out from groaning; all night long I flood my bed with weeping and drench my couch with tears” (Psalm 6:6, NIV). I am tired of hurting.

Counselors listen to their clients, evaluate their situations, and offer advice. Jesus does this and more (Ephesians 3:20). He acts in light of eternity. Jesus, the author and finisher of my faith (Hebrews 12:2), the Alpha and Omega (Revelation 1:8), doesn’t just advice, He resolves; He knows my end because He had chosen me from the beginning (Jeremiah 1:5). Last night was not the first time I cried to Jesus; like counselors, He has been with me every step of the way– and I know that there is no end to our counselor-client relationship, so I am secure. In moving forward, I will remember, by His grace, His promises and, like David said, my heart will instruct and remind me of my God!

Openness and honesty are important in a counseling relationship. I thank God that I was able to be raw with Him. I was so angry at God like clients get angry at those trying to help them. Unfortunately we forget that those in the position of helping us tend to know more/better than what we know, which is exactly why we go to them in the first place. I doubted whether God is indeed for me. I questioned His love for me, even though His Word reminds me continuously of His unfailing love! Still, though, I thank God for mercy!

Jesus Christ is the Greatest Counselor. I woke up this morning aware of God’s goodness. Last night I demanded that God should tell me that everything is going to be ok– all this after He used one of my closest friends to pray with me and give me godly counsel– but God being a merciful Father answered me. I read a devotional this morning that admonished that waiting on God is worth it. In my quiet time I read some Psalms– #irony– and one part that really hit home for me was Psalm 40:1, “I waited patiently for the Lord; he turned to me and heard my cry” (NIV). I believe that is God telling me it is already well with me because when God hears, He acts, and when He acts, it is awesome. So, I’ll just continue waiting because I now know–KNOW– that God hears me. The patience part is just frustrating.

I imagine walking into Jesus’ counseling office. I see on His door: Jesus Christ, M.S., Psy.D, D.D, G.C, displaying His credentials, not because He has to but because people feel better seeing acronyms next to someone’s name. Jesus Christ, Master of the Soul, Doctor of (my) Psychology, Doctor of Doctors, Great Counselor– of course Jesus will stop there because He is humble.

What am I telling you? We all need a counselor who never gets tired of seeing us or hearing from us. His name is Jesus. You won’t regret it.

Transformed

“And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit” (2nd Corinthians 3:18, NIV).

First of all, God is good! I just can’t keep that to myself, neither can I say it enough. God is so good that when I think about His goodness towards me, I cry. But today is not about crying; it is a day of thanksgiving.

One aspect of God’s goodness that I have been enjoying is His power to transform! Friends, never underestimate the power of God to change your life and give you a whole new perspective, a new outlook, a new mind, etc. An example of the transformative power of the Holy Spirit is the story of Paul! Once called Saul, Paul was a Christian-hating-murdering Jewish man who was bent on destroying the disciples’ work after Jesus’ ascension. Jesus encountered him on his way to Damascus in Acts 9. This same guy was transformed by God to be the guy who planted churches, wrote a majority of the books in the New Testament, called himself a servant of Jesus in multiple letters, etc. I look at Paul and I want God to so transform my life that people will be wondering: who’s that girl? I want to know her God.

But I digress. So what does all of this have to do with me? God has already started his transformative work in my life. I had the chance to share a bit of my story with someone today and I realized my heart for people, especially my family, has changed.

I love my family, don’t get me wrong; but now I LOVE them! I love them with the love of Christ! I love them with the burden on my heart to get them closer to Jesus! I love them enough to care about their salvation and eternity. I love them enough to rebuke them and correct them. I love them so much that all I want is for them to know Jesus on an intimate level and be souled out for Him! I love them so much that I pray for them, intercede on their behalf. I love them enough to want to talk to them and check in on them and give them godly counsel and disciple them. I can keep going but I’ll stop.

This is not to brag. This is just to show what God has done in my heart. To be honest, before I surrendered to Christ, I was selfish. My family, though they mattered, were just people I was stuck with, so I had to tolerate them. Praying for them was a burden to me, caring for their wellbeing was forced out of me. I am not proud of this; I’m quite ashamed, honestly. But I thank God I am not who I was.

So I praise God for transforming me by the renewal of my mind and the changing of my heart.

This is my testimony. This new found love I have for my family doesn’t stop with them– it is extended to friends, neighbors, strangers, siblings in the Lord, etc. And let me tell you something, I am glad! I am glad that God has shown me mercy by allowing me to care as He does– although, He cares way more for them! And He cares way more for you!

My Foundation, The Rock

“He is like a man building a house, who dug down deep and laid the foundation on the rock” (Luke 6:48, NIV).

I don’t know if you know the hymn “My Hope is Built on Nothing Less”. The chorus says: On Christ the solid rock I stand; all other ground is sinking sand. I don’t know about you but I want to have a solid foundation, one that won’t fail me when everything else is crumbling. And in my experience, Jesus is the only one.

I had an encounter today that really struck me. I am in a phase in my life where I am transitioning from being a child to being an adult, not just developmentally but also in my day to day living. I graduated in May and now I have to face the real world, i.e bills, stdent loans, responsibilities, etc. Frankly, I don’t like it, but such is life… What are you going to do?!? Anyway, I am not going the traditional route of coming out of college and getting a job, or coming out of undergrad and going straight to grad school. I am convicted that God has called me to something else, at least for now. And I am pursuing that! But… There is always a but, isn’t there?

I have faced some opposition and I am still facing them! It is very discouraging when you are excited about what God has called you to do and the ones you expect to support you are the ones against your decisions, they are the ones second-guessing what you’re doing, they  are the ones asking if there isn’t another way to serve God– to be honest, I was sad; but God had to open my heart and eyes and let me see that they are coming from a place of love and concern. When I was asked these questions, I was hurt, very hurt to be honest. I was so hurt that I started to think that perhaps I heard the wrong thing from God! I started questioning God, asking Him if He really wanted me to do what He purposefully called me to do– don’t get it wrong, friends, God is never confused– but I was pretty sure that God didn’t know what He was doing… How naive and human of me, right?

After some time I was reminded that I am on this earth to do the will of my Father in Heaven. With apprehension I decided to follow in God’s footsteps, allowing Him to lead me and guide me. The journey hasn’t been all that pleasant, but it has been peaceful. I hope that makes sense. Today I was reminded and encouraged that God is my foundation. My foundation is not on man or woman or family or friends; it is not on the nods and approval of the people around me, neither is it on their disapproval. But my foundation is on God, the one who formed me in my mother’s womb, who called me, molded me, who is pruning me. If He approves of me, that’s great; if He disapproves of what I am doing, I can go back to Him where I can at find grace and mercy, something man doesn’t necessarily give. I was reminded that at the end of the day, I answer to Him, the author and finisher of my faith.

So, what am I going to do from here on out? I will continue to trust God. I know that challenges will come; perhaps even the old tunes of disapproval will play again. But Jesus is my rock, He is my foundation, I put my trust and hope in Him. I trust that He will help me and guide me in the new direction He is taking me. Perhaps I’ll even get discouraged along the way, but I will put my trust in my Father knowing that, “Nevertheless, God’s solid foundation stands firm, sealed with this inscription: ‘The Lord knows those who are his’ ” (2nd Timothy 2:19, NIV). And if God’s very own foundation is firm, then I am pretty secure trusting in Him!

I am excited for this journey, though! God is going to move and it is a great privilege to be on The Rock’s team, my rock that will never fail!

Testimony Thursday: The Peace of God

“Send us around the world with the news of your saving power and your eternal plan for all mankind” (Psalm 67:2, TLB).

It is with great excitement that I can say that I will be going to Croatia, by the grace of God, in a few hours! I honestly cannot believe that God has chosen me, of all people, to be part of what He is doing in this world! I am amazed and I am overwhelmed. I thank God for the desire He has given me to go into all the world! The joy that’s in my heart cannot be expressed with words but I thank God for it!

But this is my testimony:

This morning, I woke up earlier than I had expected and it dawned on me that it’s the 30th! Continue reading “Testimony Thursday: The Peace of God”

Testimony Thursday

“All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations… And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age” (Matthew 28:18-20, NIV).

Going Across the World, with His Help

By the grace of God, I will be going to Croatia on July 30th, 2015. I am very excited because I get to be part of what God is doing in the world. Honestly, I had never heard of the country until I heard of the opportunity to go there on a service learning trip last year when I was on a discipleship training program in Burlington, VT, with the Navigators, a Christian organization. I was at first discouraged because fundraising was involved; I don’t particularly like fundraising. I dismissed the idea of even going, but God had a different plan.

Earlier this year, in March, I was reminded of the opportunity and I felt a pull in my heart to apply. Application cost $30 and I used pretty much all I had in my account to pay for it. I knew that whether or not I was accepted, the money was gone. I handed everything over to God in faith. Lo and behold, Continue reading “Testimony Thursday”

He is the Reason for this Season

I can’t remember the actual date but what really started this whole blogging business is “Testimony Thursday”. I was just on instagram one day when the thought came to me, “Instead of #tbt, why not have testimonies?!” I thought it was an original idea… that was until I saw a page using the same phrase! I was a bit discouraged but I was happy because I knew that the idea came to me; I didn’t steal it from anyone haha.

Long story short, “God for everyday” came to my mind on Monday, actually, and I started thinking of creating a blog and/or website where I’ll be able to simply share the Gospel with the world!!!

I love Jesus! I love God! The gift of the Holy Spirit is amazing! The Bible is my best friend. I love the fact that Continue reading “He is the Reason for this Season”