Archive for ‘Strength’

June 30, 2012

Him in these 3 things

True strength is only in Christ Jesus!

His great love for us was and is a strength that is unmatched in this world.

Our (my) versions of strength consist of multilayers of deception, putting on a strong image to walk through a difficult situation, thinking that it makes more sense that other not seeing me in my weakness. When truly I am  wearing it on my face.

Christ is many things to us but today I am focusing to see Him in these 3 things:

TRUTH

LIGHT

LOVE

When we choose to walk out His life in strength it isn’t always some mystical, meek and mild mannered, lay down your life kind of thing. (even though those are good things) It is simply being willing to speak TRUTH and 95% of the time that is going to be truth about YOU.

John 8:32

And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.”

His strength rises when we say “ I’m hurting” instead of “ I’m fine.” It rises when we say “I’m angry” instead of “ It’s ok!” Showing realness draws others to the source of strength for it is simple sincerity. In that place we are free to be who we are, where we are, moving on into where He is leading.

The multilayer of deception of “I’m fine and Ok” come in like a whirlwind, turning my insides upside down. Filling me with denial, defense and damaging credibility and relationships along the way.

It also means being willing to stand in the LIGHT. No one really like those bathrooms with all the florescent lighting. Our flaws look magnified to us. The dark circles of tiredness, the pimples of stress, the paleness of our lack of nutrition -spiritually or otherwise.  Seeing those realities are part of why we choose not to walk in the light as He is in the light. Light means we can see clearly everything about us… but we like dim soft candlelight it makes everything seem more beautiful. (like photo-shopped lives for face book) 

But we are the lamp of the Lord.

 

Psalm 18:28
For You will light my lamp; The LORD my God will enlighten my darkness.

We see dimly without His light -not clear. But in His strength, with His light in the lamp, we can stand confident in the light knowing that if we have dirt on our faces or sin, hurt, anger, even pain …He will wash us clean and renew us. No where else can we get that than in the Light of His presence.

It also means LOVE. Christ loved people with the strength of many waters. He was poured out for us.

Song of Solomon 8:6

…. For love is as strong as death…..

He spoke the truth and brought light.

We think strong love is some mushy, be there for you over and over, lay down kind of thing ( again all good stuff) Yet Christ told people the truth no matter what. If they rejected it, He moved on. He left the door open for if they chose to hear the truth and return to Him. He did not baby sit their every whim, or try to reason with them and all their excuses. Instead He went to the Cross, forgave them and He sat down at the right hand of the Father. Those of us who are His are seated with Him.

True strength is being willing to Love by speaking truth about ourselves and to others and bringing light. -Letting it shine through us.

I don’t always walk in this true strength!

I fight with my fears and flaws and all my insecurities but I know if I allow myself to become weak in the sight of others that He is faithful to show up STRONG!

TRUTH+LIGHT+LOVE = STRENGTH

a three fold cord!

Starla

A song for you ..Matt Redman -FIRES

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June 26, 2012

what’s it to ya?

1 Peter 2:16

Live as free people, but don’t hide behind your freedom when you do evil. Instead, use your freedom to serve God.

This verse came to mind when I was talking over the subject of loving others with Tina…

oh how selfish we can be sometimes!( how I can be sometimes!)

We were given our freedom so that we can give and love others , not to use that freedom as a license to not give a crap about what other people think or feel. (ever been there??…yeah me too! )

When we decide that what we do , like, and want is more important than if our actions, words and deeds affect others we have moved into a bad place. ( ok seriously I wrote this a week before I had my own I don’t give a crap moment..Disappointed smile)

We begin walking down a road that others likes and dislikes are not to be a consideration to us. It feels like entitlement brat syndrome to me. ( yeah…I was being a brat.. I wanted it to go the way I wanted it to go and NOW! )

It really just boils down to respect!

If you know someone doesn’t eat pork than why would you serve it to them?

If you know someone is trying to quit smoking why would you lite up in front of them like it is no biggy!

Do you think to yourself …what’s it to ya? I can do whatever I want.

Do you think that this is rude behavior?

Probably not since in this generation we think what we do or don’t do is none of other’s business.

I think we should think about that!

When we are so self-serving we will have to walk alone and our strength fails us because we are only strong when we are humbly obedient to Christ and loving to others in our community, homes, churches and lives.

Respect takes on a whole new meaning when you learn to be respectful of others and not just demand a respect of your right .  ( man this is whoopin me! )

WRONG thinking! <— yeah I was there!

Don’t we know respect will just naturally flow when we offer it willingly!

Romans 12:3

For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the faith God has distributed to each of you.

 

Do you believe what you reap is what you will sow?  (  oh I reaped all right!! )

True strength rises up in us when we can let go of our needed to have our own way. We have the right to do what we like but when it comes to other people they will see love by how you care about how you affect them.  

( I was way more concerned about how another was affecting me so I was going to affect them!! <– great attitude I know  I am still sorting out the details of that mess in my own head.. the lies within my own thinking and the deep need to control…I got issues to deal with… but one positive is eventually humility gripped me and drove me right to my knees! )

STARLA

June 21, 2012

A-BOM(b)! I – NATION

Proverbs 6:16-19 ESV

There are six things that the Lord hates, seven that are an abomination to him: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that make haste to run to evil, a false witness who breathes out lies, and one who sows discord among brothers.

Recently Tina and I looked up each word in the Fruit of the Spirit. We wanted to look at the opposites of each word also – the antonym. The antonym on LOVE was ABOMINATION. Strong word I would say. I’ve thought of this word  abomination as a word like damnation. But here we can see it is very simple. This word simply means – NOT LOVING! Now lets look at why…we like to look at all things in context of relationship here at F of L..so lets put it in context.

Haughty eyes – this word means Proud, Snob, and Arrogant.  If you are looking toward others like you are so much better than they are, smarter than they are, as if they have nothing to offer you. ..you are not loving anything but yourself. Humility to hear something other than your own thinking and being open minded is needed.

A lying tongue – simply not being honest with the people around you. There is no way to walk through trials and issues in relationship if there is not honesty. Honesty about how you feel, think, and what you need from the people around you. If fear is an issue and you lie because you fear the outcome then courage is needed to speak the truth.

Hands that shed innocent blood – This could be more than murder. It could be throwing someone else under the bus, creating situations where others become angry with people, where they think badly about another instead of you owning up to your mistakes…this could be simply blaming others. What is needed is personal responsibility to deal with yourself instead of lashing out on others.

A heart that devises wicked plans – working against people on purpose. Choosing to thwart others. This is the opposite of working together. The opposite of unity. This is finding ways to put others lower so you can get ahead. What is needed is a team player mindset. You are only as good as the team around you. Encourage and help others instead. Be a problem solver not a problem maker.

Feet that make haste to run to evil – looking for trouble, looking for any back handed way to get ahead. One who is running on impulse and not thinking twice. Quick to lie, steal, cheat. Serious repentance and a turn from all evil is needed here. Haste makes waste — wasting away is death… stop killing yourself. Waste belongs in the toilet. So start flushing!!

A false witness who breathes out lies – Lying against others. Telling stories to better yourself. Fabricating the truth. Padding the way you “look” in a story for a more favorable outcome toward yourself. Being honest at all times requires much strength.

   

One who sows discord among brothers – Do you pit people against each other. Tell people what you heard others say about them. Intentionally tell others what people did that you know will disturb them and cause them to have feelings of dislike toward someone.

 

See abomination doesn’t have to mean you are a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad person …you just have simply chosen not to LOVE. We need not be shamed into better behavior. What we need in understanding and choice.

CHOOSE BETTER!

Don’t become an:

A-BOM (b) I (all about me) NATION 

Stop exploding  your inner garbage all over everyone else! Deal with it by loving instead! Now that is real strength…

 

Starla ( with lots of Tina thinking in there!! ) Open-mouthed smile

June 18, 2012

Strength #2

 

IMG_5177

-starla

Ego can ruin friendships and put a wedge between family members, too.

-Kori Ellis

 

Imagine a world without ego. No…

  • Toes to step on
  • Feelings to hurt
  • Fair shares to grab
  • Territory to defend
  • Fault to allocate
  • Back to watch
  • Last words to get
  • Ideas to hold back
  • Embarrassment to bear
  • Battles to win
  • Knowledge to prove
  • Entitlement to have
  • Encouragement to withhold
  • Credit to seek
  • Grudges to hold
  • Jealousy to feel
  • Revenge to take
  • Hidden meanings to construe

-Sam Parker

June 13, 2012

Want Strength buy this book

The Elephant in the Room book cover

http://www.elephantintheroombook.com/

The elephant in the room is a common idiom defined as, “avoiding an obvious truth.” That Elephant is Ethics. Learn the extent to which we, as a society, have morally regressed and what each of us can do to examine ourselves, change the course of our lives, and reclaim the nation in which we live.

 
TABLE OF CONTENTS:
Section 1
  1. A Tower of Strength
  2. Honor Bound
  3. Set in Your Ways
  4. Facing Your Giants
  5. You Reap What You Sow
  6. There Is No Escape
  7. Standing The Test Of Time
  8. Don’t Bend The Truth
Section 2
  1. Pillar 1: Keep Your Cool
  2. Pillar 2: Don’t Bite The Hand That Feeds You
  3. Pillar 3: On The Level
  4. Pillar 4: Find It In Your Heart
  5. Pillar 5: Draw Your Attention
  6. Pillar 6: Don’t Put Foot In Mouth
  7. Pillar 7: Bringing It Home

I can see several of those that are screaming READ ME!! How about you?

-Friendships of Love

June 11, 2012

STRENGTH #1

IMG_3683

We need to stand together as pillars of strength in unity!

 

Luke 11:17

 But he, knowing their thoughts, said to them, “Every kingdom divided against itself is laid waste, and a divided household falls.”

Starla

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