Friday, July 31, 2015

Rise Up

"But the cowardly, unbelieving, abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, all liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death." - Revelation 21:8 

As defined by Webster's Dictionary, a coward is, "A person who lacks courage, especially one who is shamefully unable to control his fear and so shrinks from danger or trouble." 

Are you lacking courage? Are you worried about what the world will think of you? Are you afraid of offending people, so instead, you shrink away from the danger and trouble we are battling right now? Maybe you believe silence does no harm, but hear me out--

"Silence in the face of evil is itself evil... Not to speak, is to speak. Not to act, is to act." ~Dietrich Bonhoeffer 

To be silent is to be passive and lukewarm. Jesus says He will spit the lukewarm out of His mouth (Revelation 3:16)! 

"We have to respond when something is unjust...We can't be content to watch at the same time we condemn. To condemn is to stand up in the face of a wrong and fight it. We must pick a side." ~Vladimir Nicolai (The Butterfly and the Violin)

"For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms." -Ephesians 6:12 

We cannot sit back any longer. 

"And the Lord; He is the One who goes before you. He will be with you, He will not leave you nor forsake you; do not fear nor be dismayed." -Deuteronomy 31:8

If God goes before us, who can stop us? 

"The Lord is with me; I will not be afraid. What can man do to me?" -Psalm 118:6

Rise up Church!            PRAY.

As Edmund Burke said, "All tyranny needs to gain a foothold is for people of good conscience to remain silent." 

If we do not speak, our enemies will. If we do not fight to protect our children, someone will fight to conquer them. 

We cannot draw back. Take courage. Lift your voice--let's go. 

"But we are not those who draw back and are destroyed but those who have faith and obtain life." -Hebrews 10:39 

Thursday, July 30, 2015

"Made for More"

"You take your place in the shadows
Play your part, hide your heart, so that nobody knows
All the secrets that you hold
Memories and broken dreams from a story left untold"

Why do we hide? We hide our true selves. Hide our dreams. Hide our emotions. Our deepest longings. Our pains. Our joys. Our secrets. Our very hearts

We think they are too much, or not enough. Or that no one understands. 

And so instead of trying to dig deep and understand the reasoning behind the way we act or feel, we get into "survival" mode. We throw ourselves into work, school, or day-to-day life. In our society today, it's harder to truly find times of silence. 

Our minds are constantly occupied, but how much of that time do we spend actually thinking

The truth is, we were made for more than just everyday life.

"You were made for more than breathing
More than playing small and running scared 
You were made to walk in freedom 
To love and laugh, to find out why you're here 
Your name was known before the earth was formed 
You were made for more" 

We were made to discover, go on adventures. To laugh and find joy in the small areas of life. We were made to fellowship with others, share with them in happiness as well as pain. We feed of each other, we need each other. We need to not hide our feelings or try to walk this rode alone. 

I cannot hide. 

I cannot try to simply live life. 

I was made for more. 

(Portions in quotations are song lyrics from "Made for More" by Ginny Owens.)


A writer must record her thoughts.

She must stop, listen to the silence, and let the music flow out on to the page. It isn't enough just to think, just to feel. Thoughts, emotions, they must be captured and analyzed. They need reviewed and critiqued just like words and sentences.

A writer needs silence and time.

Sunday, July 19, 2015

"For Freedom You've Set Me Free"

"For freedom you've set me free
And yes, I am free indeed
You rewrote my name, unshackled my shame
You opened my eyes to see that I am free" 

I recently heard this song, "Liberty",  by Shane and Shane for the first time. It got me thinking. Christ has set us free, not just so we are no longer under the curse of sin, but so we can live in freedom! 

Romans 8:1-2 says, "There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death." 

He has set us free for freedom. He wants us to live in freedom. When we truly live as free, new creations in Christ, we show the world what it means to be alive. Being free doesn't mean we can do whatever we want, but we are no longer bound under death. Sin has no hold on you. 

The Fall has quenched the human spirit. Christ's freedom restores it. Freedom is being able to be all God created you for and to fulfill what He has called you to do. Living free is being unafraid to let the joy of the Lord flow from your soul. 

When we are set free, we are a racehorse who was held in the box and finally released, ready to run with full force. Being free means nothing holds back your full potential. Newsboys' song, "I am Free," says it well. 
"I am free to run
I am free to dance
I am free to live for You
I am free!
Yes, I am free"

If we have surrendered our lives to Christ, He has cleansed us and made us free, for freedom. So let's live it! 

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Our Time Is Now

Let no one despise your youth, but be an example to the believers in the word, in conduct, in love, in spirit, in faith, in purity." - 1 Timothy 4:12
It is this generation who will make the change. We always have an influence. We always have a voice. We may not use our voice, but that is really saying, "Go ahead evil, keep thriving." Or we can speak out and make a change.
We cannot remain silent. We are the future, so we need to make sue that we will HAVE a future. If not for ourselves, then for our posterity.
Be bold.
Our time is now.

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Strokes of Design

I believe in design. I believe in the artwork of the universe. What masterpiece assembles itself? What thing of beauty really comes together on its own?

To have beauty, mustn't there be an artist?

Paint cannot come onto a page a part from an outside force. The strokes of a pencil do not guide themselves. A piece of clay does not become pottery without a potter.

Did earth enter the precise spot in the universe by random chance? Is it just a coincidence that the north star always points directly north, or that the Little Dipper always pours into the Big Dipper? And what about the sun?  Why does it consistently rise in the east and set in the west?

"The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament shows His handiwork. Day unto day utters speech, and night unto night reveals knowledge. There is no speech nor language where their voice is not heard." ~Psalm 19:1-3

Monday, July 6, 2015

Beauty--There is Something More


It's all around us. It's in the foggy mist--in the way clouds hover over a mountain. It's in the glow of the moon on a summer's eve. Beauty floods the night sky; the stars whisper the word. It's in the quiet moment, there in the stillness. It's in the bird's song. It's in the flutter of a butterfly. It's in the sound of the human voice. Beauty is in the fragrance of lilacs, in the perfume of wild roses. It's in the sent of rain.

Beauty surrounds us.

If our world is the result of nothing and humans are just from a long line of evolution, where does beauty come from? And why does it touch the human heart? Why does it stir the soul? Why am I so captivated at the sight of a sunset? Why do the brilliant colors excite something in me? Why am I entranced by waterfalls? Why is the sound of water rippling over rocks music to my ears?

Isn't it strange that people can think and feel this way--be so mesmerized by beauty--if we are nothing more than the cells we are composed of? It would seem emotions could not effect us the way they do if all we are is chemical reactions and bodily functions.

My only answer to these questions is we must come from something greater, and far more beautiful, than all of creation combined.

"When I consider Your heavens, the work of Your fingers, the moon and the stars, which You have ordained, what is man that you are mindful of him...For you have made him a little lower than the angles, and You have crowned him with glory and honor." ~Psalm 8:3-5

Saturday, July 4, 2015

Still a Grand Old Flag

"You're a grand old flag, you're a high-flying flag!"

These words were familiar for my lips to sing as a young girl, and I always did so excitedly. My small country school started every morning by raising the flag, saying the Pledge, and singing a patriotic song.

"And forever in peace may you wave."

I can still picture that beautiful flag, gently swaying in the spring breeze. The sight invigorated me. It stirred something deep inside--something passionate, something proud.

"You're the emblem of, the land I love."

I was proud of that flag. Proud of all it stood for, proud of those who fought for it, proud of the principles our country was founded upon, proud of those who founded it, proud to live in the "home of the free and the brave."

Our flag is STILL a grand old flag! America is still a free country. The history of our foundation cannot be changed.

Though our country and world is changing, America still holds values that need to be celebrated. So let us celebrate! Let's celebrate freedom.

"May auld acquaintance be forgot, keep your eye on the grand old flag!"