Aug 1, 2012

Wednesday SHINE....

Today's Reading: Acts 11

Happy Worship Wednesday, SHINE girls! Oh, how I love Wednesdays! My little feet cannot stop dancing and praising the Lord on this day. Turn the music up loud and worship the Lord on this day. He loves to hear you sing His praises. He does!

Oh, sweet SHINE darlings, are you just loving the book of Acts? I mean, seriously, I cannot put the book down. So much good stuff in this book. I don't even know where to start.

Let's talk about Chapter 9 for a minute. Saul/Paul. Oh yeah, this dude is on FIRE!

Girls, Saul/Paul was the worst of the worst. Seriously. He was the one in charge of persecuting Christians. He was a bad, bad dude.

Here is the cool part though, God CHOSE him anyway! God chose him to be one of the main apostles in spreading the good news of Jesus!

What in the world??

Not sure about you girls, but THIS gives me hope! If God can use Paul, God can use me!

Saul (paul was called saul before his conversion) was walking down the road to a town called Damascus. Suddenly a light from Heaven flashed around him. Saul fell to the ground, and Jesus Himself spoke to Him. Loud and clear.


"He set off. When he got to the outskirts of Damascus, he was suddenly dazed by a blinding flash of light. As he fell to the ground, he heard a voice: "Saul, Saul, why are you out to get me?"

 He said, "Who are you, Master?"

   "I am Jesus, the One you're hunting down. I want you to get up and enter the city. In the city you'll be told what to do next."

Acts 9:3-6

Girls, can you imagine? Can you imagine Jesus stopping you in your pretty little tracks and asking you what in the world is wrong with you and why are you acting this way?

Let me just be frank and say that the Lord has stopped me many times in my little brown cowgirl boots. He has stopped me so quick in my sin that my head took a whole day to stop spinning. I am not kidding.

I shudder at the times that I bowed my head in shame when caught in my sin by the Lord. Embarrassed, red-faced, humiliated and mad all at the same time. 

Mad because I always think..."good grief! can i get away with anything?? do i always have to get caught and repent?"

The answer is simple. It's because He loves me. And because He loves you

He loves us so much that He will snatch us right out of that slimy pit of sin and throw us flat on our derrieres back into the safety of His arms. 

Girls, He loves us so much. He will fight tooth and nail to pull us out of sin. It hurts when He does this, doesn't it? It is hard to fall back on our knees when we were snatched so hard from our sin.

Oh, but girls. It's only because of His great love for us. It's only because He sees the danger right around the next corner of that sinful place. He sees the devastation that this sin will cause us and others. 

Just like Paul, He has a plan for us, girls. He has a mighty plan to use us, even in the depths of our slimiest sin, He has a plan for us.

Repeat after me out loud: "God has a plan for ME!"

One more time, "God has a plan for ME!"

Paul's passion for spreading the Gospel is unmatched. His urgency to spread the news of Jesus was because of His own dealings with being lost and head-high in sin and blindness.

Paul knew very well the cost of not following Jesus. He knew first hand the loss of not being intimately connected with Jesus. He also knew that Jesus spared his life, when he did not deserve it...not even an ounce.

Girls, wherever you are. Hear me again, wherever you are, it's not too late. God is pulling you up, inch by inch, out of that slimy pit. Quit resisting and let Him have his way in your pretty little heart.

You won't believe how much He has for you on the other side. You cannot even fathom.

If you are like me, and rebellious at times, He has to pull you out by your hair. For real. He does this.

There have been times when I wasn't even searching for a way out because I was so blinded by my own dark pit. Have you been there? Have you not even realized the danger you were in until He snatches you up and gives you a big dose of His Truth?

Oh, I know very well. All too well.

At times we are so used to the darkness, we don't even recognize the way to the Light anymore. That's a scary and dangerous place to be.

Oh, sweet darling, if you are in some darkness, let Him peel the scales off of your eyes, just like He did Paul. The Light may hurt for just a few minutes, but you will never want to go back to being blind and in that dark pit again. 

Last night I was sitting on the balcony of our condo. I was praying to the Lord as I sat in awe of the sheer magnitude of the Atlantic Ocean. 

My eyes were drawn to this huge light on top of the water. I mean huge. 

I am not even sure where it came from, or what it was. My eyes stayed on that light for an eternity, or so it seemed. 

I then noticed a little fishing boat. A small light in that big ocean. It started out very close to the big light, then slowly headed east, away from the big beautiful light. 

It was going really slow, but it was getting further and further away from the big light. 

The further it got from the big light, my heart pinged with a familiar feeling. I know what it's like to be that small fishing boat. 

I know what it's like to drift, and drift, and drift away from the Light. The further I would drift, the less familiar the Light was. The darkness became more familiar and more comfortable. 

But, oh my goodness, the darkness is cold, and damp, and lonely. There is no life there. No hope. 

As I watched that little boat drifting off away from the big light, I prayed right then and there that I would never drift again. I prayed that the Lord would anchor me down with the largest anchor He could find. 

I am praying the same for all of you, friends. Trust me, there is nothing good going on in the darkness. Only destruction. Only loss. Only hurt. 

Ask God to get that big anchor of His and plop you down right smack in the middle of His feet. Oh, He will. 

Father,

Hear our plea. Hear our cries for your Truth. Peel off any blinders we are wearing. Make Your Light burn these scales off of our pretty little eyes.

Lord, we never want to be like that little fishing boat. Alone and drifting away from You. Never let us get that far from You again. 

Anchor us down at Your feet. It's the only place to be. 

When we are anchored to You, only then are we truly free. Truly free to live our lives as You have planned for us. 

Oh, the freedom that comes when we are anchored to You.

Hear our prayer, Lord. We seek Your face and Your will for our lives. 

In Jesus name we pray, amen.

‘Rejoice with me; I have found my lost sheep.’  
I tell you that in the same way there will be more rejoicing in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who do not need to repent."
Luke 15:6-7