Lost

My love, this hole in my heart seems to widen each day. I miss you so deeply and I don’t think anyone can ever realize the depth of this pain in my heart. The waves of mourning overwhelm me when I least expect.

I admit, there were times when you were suffering I asked our God to take you into his heavenly glory. I wish I would have asked him to give us more time. I can’t explain the loss of you and how lost I am without you. I don’t know who I am without you and finding me again seems impossible.

Ann, my Love.. I’m just lost..

Comfortable

Comfortable

In life are we are always searching for a comfortable place? Most times we have to navigate through the uncomfortable to find it. Sometimes it seems unattainable, sometimes it feels so far out of reach.

I heard a pastor preaching on my way to the office recently, and I don’t know if I’m paraphrasing him correctly, but he said something like this.. “if you’re a Christian and everything is fine and easy in your life, I may question your relationship with our Lord”.. you see when we let him into our hearts, we become targets, we enter the battlefield and that battle will at times become intense.

When I accepted Christ many years ago, I felt relief, I felt life will be a breeze now, life will be so easy. Little did I know I was to put on the armor of Christ because accepting Him into my heart was signing the dotted line to joined his spiritual forces. And we battle, we battle with praise, worship, and prayer..

We as Christians must constantly ask ourselves this question, do we truly Love our Lord as he commands? HE said it is his greatest commandment .. Matthew 22:37 Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’

When we truly Love him, our adversary despises that Love and will attack fiercely for he knows his time is short.

Revelation 12:12, NIV: “Therefore rejoice, you heavens and you who dwell in them! But woe to the earth and the sea, because the devil has gone down to you! … Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! for the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time.”

If we allow ourselves to live in untruth, we will never find the comfort we desire. If we live in his truth, comfort will find us. And yes, we will experience discomfort it’s inevitable, but when we do we find comfort in his promises..

Romans 8:18

For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us.

He will come again to judge the Living and the dead.. I believe it’s sooner than most of us think,. Are you prepared?

Christmas

I will admit, I struggle to write this year. I guess I wear my heart on my sleeve, I don’t know if that’s good or bad, but it’s who he made me to be. The last few months have been a blur. Time has seemed to melt one day into another as we spin around this Orb. There have been times when I’ve questioned so many things on my journey including our God. Through all we as a family have endured during this Season, our God, our precious Lord and Savior remains faithful.

Its this point where I would usually write each year how Ann and I wish you all a Merry Christmas. Although Annie is no longer with us, I still want to wish all my Friends and family the Merriest of Christmas. This year he has blessed us with a beautiful addition to our family, Maeve Annmarie, and has increased my intimacy with him in so many ways. I want to shout to the World that the only way I have been able to get up most days and lace up the shoes has been enveloped in HIS LOVE.

I’d also like to take a moment to thank every one of you who has commented or sent a message of encouragement to me and our family. Social media gets a bad wrap sometimes doesn’t it? For me, I have so many Loving and caring friends that have taken their precious time to stop by, read a post and comment with words of encouragement. Our Lord states how important the words we choose to let flow from our tongues can be, and your words have helped carry me through on days when my heart was just not ready to move. I hope in some way, the words I’ve chosen to let go from my heart may have helped you in some way. I truly thank you all from the bottom of my heart.

So this day, this first Christmas Day our family celebrates without Annie.. take a moment, look around at the ones who have chosen to spend the most precious gift of all with you, time. Look around and say a quick thank you to our Lord for giving you your people to spend your precious time with. And most importantly take a moment to recognize our Lord and thank him for sending His One and Only Son to make a way for all of us. For his Mercies are everlasting, his forgiveness is new each morning, and his Love is unconditional. I am so thankful that our relationship with him can NOT be broken no matter what we do, he LOVES us so..

May God Bless you and Keep you on this his Glorious day.. Merry, Merry, Merry, Merry Christmas..

With all my Love.. xoxoxo Billy

Work

What does the word mean to you? Are you working? How can we make this work? Does that work for you? Seems like it is a pretty important word in the world isn’t it? 
Does the word work mean anything to God? Can we work hard enough for God to have him Love us more? I think some of us try, I think some of us view God as a statistician, he’s up there keeping score on us, he’ll never let me in. It’s a fine line isn’t it? We really can’t do anything for God that will change what he did for us! When he died for us on that Cross thousands of years ago he did all the Work that will ever be necessary for us!!! 

But what about the old song… faith without works is like a screen door on a submarine!? Here’s my take, when you fall in Love with our Lord serving him is a pleasure and really is just an offering to our God and King! Everything we do on this planet including our work can be offered up to our Lord and done as if we are doing it for him! 

Years ago when I first had God fall on me, I found even the most mundane of chores with a Worship song playing seemed, dare I say rather joyful… thank you Lord for reminding me of that time.. sometimes I forget my responsibilities are easier with you on my heart and mind.. try it sometime, worship while you work, I think he likes that! I know I do…

When we Worship as we work, I believe HE will do a WORK in us… can we make a new word today, workship 

God Bless you all today as you go about your workship… 

Psalm 104:23 Man goes out to his work and to his labor until evening.

Waiting

Many years ago when our children were young, I was at work and Ann called me in a panic. She had just received a call from a man who stated he had taken our daughter. I told her, call the school, make sure she is in school and call me back! I can’t tell you the panic in our hearts when we were waiting. Ann called the school and the office worker went to the class room and our daughter was safe. Turned out this person was looking at press clippings of students in sport leagues and calling the parents to terrify them. Terrify them he did, He was never caught, but when you think you’ve lost a loved one in any way the waiting period is crucifying. From that experience I can imagine the pain in a parents heart when a child is truly lost and can’t be found! 
Waiting, just waiting.. As a parent we all know the feeling of waiting. Even to this day as our children are older now, if they’re in town and staying with us and go out. I wait for them to return home so my mind can relax.

Waiting, thinking about that terrifying experience years ago bings back that terrible feeling. We were only waiting for minutes and our hearts were torn right out of our chests! Makes me think of how the father feels about the lost who are so far away from him. So far away from him for so long! 

The Bible talks about the Fathers Love! The bible states he is Love! Can we fathom the depth of that Love for us? I can’t imagine the hurt he feels when a child of his is Lost… when a child of his walks away from him willingly! And what about when a child of his exits this World without him? Can we imagine the pain he feels as they begin eternity in that horrible way! 

You know that day many years ago when our children arrived home Ann and I hugged them a little tighter and the joy of their safety overwhelmed us. I can only imagine the joy the father feels when one of his children accepts him/arrives home! I guess all I can say today is He’s waiting, just waiting.. Please don’t be one of the Lost… Come home..

Isaiah 30:18 (NLT) 

But the Lord still waits for you to come to him so he can show his love and compassion. For the Lord is a faithful God. Blessed are those who wait for him to help them.

ALL

Three letters, just three letters that mean so much! Everything, yes everything we are, everything we own, every part of our being, ALL. It seems three is a very significant number for our Lord. The triune God, on the third day he rose again. It would seem appropriate that this word of three, ALL means so much to him. Stewards, yes stewards of everything we are, all of our being, all that we own, all that he’s allowed us to be and have in this world. Hard concept to grasp, hard concept to live by isn’t it! After all, we’ve worked hard for everything in our possession haven’t we? Today I was reading about a banquet, a feast! We all love to be invited to a great dinner don’t we, we all like to sit and dine with those we love, great friends, great family! But the reading today talked about inviting those we don’t know, not the ones who can repay us! How many of us do that? I know I don’t! I had to check my spirit this morning when I was reading, just what do I believe, do I believe the words I’m reading? Am I half way in the pool and afraid to go under? Am I ALL in? You know this walk with God is one of constant learning, one of constant growth, just when we think we are making progress, our God shows us areas we need to work on! He wants ALL of us, he wants us to not just dip our toes in, he wants us diving in letting go. This morning friends, take a look around you, what does ALL mean to you? Are you holding onto something with clenched fists that could be used to help someone? And most of all he wants ALL of our Love. Love the Lord your God with ALL your heart, ALL your soul, ALL your mind and ALL your strength …
Luke 14:26

26 You cannot be my disciple, unless you love me more than you love your father and mother, your wife and children, and your brothers and sisters. You cannot come with me unless you love me more than you love your own life.
Mark 12:30
AND YOU SHALL LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART, AND WITH ALL YOUR SOUL, AND WITH ALL YOUR MIND, AND WITH ALL YOUR STRENGTH.’

Christ-like

To become like our Savior! Act like he would in all circumstances! Accept condemnation, accept rejection, accept crucifixion! Love, love your condemners, love your rejecters, love your enemies! Love the entire human race! Love your circumstances!!!
Oh to be like Christ! Oh to let the ways of this world run off our backs! How do we love those who would drive the spikes into our cross. How do we Love our rejecters, our crucifiers? 
Our Cross, do we all have one? How many spikes have been driven in along the way? I think about being Christ-like and I fail. I feel like a failure in so many ways. I fail the test so many times! I’m not accepting of my condemners, I don’t accept rejection well, I want someone to take my Cross and let me walk in peace! Is that wrong, am I a failure to our Lord? I wonder how our God is watching my movie, I wonder what act of the play I’m in. I wonder if he’s thinking, YES I gave my son ten things today to make him more Christ-like and he completed two, he’s getting there! I wonder, will our God ever give up on us because we fail him so many times? 
Love your circumstances! This s the hardest one for me, and I believe for so many! Lord, how can you ask us to Love the circumstances we all encounter along the way? I’ve watched many endure extreme circumstances and I’ve watched such suffering along the way. I’ve seen many give up on this command from our Lord, I’ve heard many state, how can God allow this to happen and they are mad. Mad at our God, mad at their circumstances, ready to quit the race, ready to call it a day. And they do, they quit God! But did God quit them? Is there a way back?? Yes, he’s waiting for the prodigals to come home! Please make your way, crawl, creep, one step at a time, make your way, he will still open up his kingdom for you when you return…
Me, I will call upon the Lord for strength, because each spike being driven in along the way, brings me closer to his image? He took his spikes and suffering for us all, he rose again victoriously! I think, for us, we take many little spikes along our way, and yes we may have to endure some huge spikes too.. But, I believe when the day comes and he calls our name, we will walk victoriously in his Kingdom, if we just HANG on!!!
When your taking on heavy fire and the spikes of this world are driven in. We all will feel like we’re failing, but let’s not give up? We’re passing the few tests we are able to and when we pass enough of them, we look a little bit more like our Savior .. Yes, I used to want to be a ball player when i was young, but now Christ-like, that’s what I want to be when I grow up.. I’m working on it, or should I say he’s working on it..

Ephesians 5:1-2 ESV

Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children. And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.

1 Peter 2:21 
For to this you have been called, because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, so that you might follow in his steps.

1 Thessalonians 5:18
Whatever happens, give thanks, because it is God’s will in Christ Jesus that you do this.

Limits

We all have our limits! We all believe we know what we are capable of! When we’re pushed, when we’re challenged do our limits change? I heard somewhere that a human only uses a very low percentage of their brain power. We are capable of so much more, but could it be said that we settle in? Settle in to our comfort zone and really never challenge ourselves or push ourselves to extend our limits? Going through trials, going through the storms of life I guess we find out just how much we can do, how strong these frail human tents of ours can be. Is that an oxymoron, strong/frail? What about God, what are his limits? Do we limit our God? Funny thing about us humans, we have the most powerful God, the creator of the Universe! We have a God that if you read about him has documented miraculous power that we can call upon. Yes our God has unlimited ability, but we refuse to call upon him in our time of need! Why is that, why do we choose to go through the eye of a storm on our own? Personally, I know I’ve felt like my problems, well they’re just not big enough trouble for our God to have to worry about! Our God, yes he’s needed in so many other monumental issues than mine? Limited, that’s what I guess I’m doing to our God.. Limiting him, not believing he CAN handle my issues along with ALL the others that are on his plate!

Father God, forgive me for limiting your almighty power! Forgive me for leaving you out of my troubles. I pray today we all recognize you want to walk through our storms holding our hand, If we just reach out and take hold! Thank you for your promises, thank you for your protection. Your word states you will never forsake us and I believe and trust in your word. For you oh Lord are a shield around us and we lift that shield high to ward off the arrows of the enemy. We praise you and worship you. All Glory and honor to our Lord most high.. In the powerful name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, I pray this prayer.. Amen..

One

I realize when we married, Ann and I became one. When we joined God into our marriage fully did we become two or did we remain ONE? The triune God, the Father the Son and the Holy Spirit. Do we view the triune God as three or ONE? Makes me think of a marriage – husband, wife, and God. Is there anything more powerful than a marriage with God in the center? Could we call it a Triune Marriage? As I sat by Ann’s hospital bed the other evening, holding her hand, I said “quite a Love Story we’ve had Hon”.. Ann’s weak, softly Spoken reply, “we’ve weathered so many storms”! So many storms, so many trials, so many things that could have shattered our marriage. Guilty as charged, Sins against God, sins against one another. We’ve certainly not been perfect people in this relationship. Without God, without him in our center, we would have both cashed it in long ago. I’m going to coin This new phrase today, The Triune Marriage! We appear as two, we are three, we are ONE joined with our God. And with God at our center, nothing will ever break our union. If your young or old for that matter, if your wondering how to make it through the storms of this journey. I hope you will ask God to be at your center. For us, it’s the only way we’ve been able to make it through.

Ephesians 5::31

“For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.”

Faith of those gone before us!

In our family our mother was a prayer warrior. A loving woman who had a very difficult childhood and throughout life many trials. What I remember most was her bible was well worn. I can still see her sitting at the end of our kitchen table with her bible, having breakfast and petitioning our Lord for all of the people she loved. Since our moms passing, I’ve often wondered if her prayers are over, if her faith for those she loved has ended? Friends, the thing I Love most about Gods word is this. Those wonderings, those questions we have in our minds are all answered in his Word. I’ve read it many times, and every time, verses pop, verses I’ve read before and never heard. When we’re reading his word, when we’re studying his ways, I believe he opens our hearts and minds to the verses we’ve read but never really heard! Verses we NEED at the point in life we are at. This day I understand from Hebrews 11:4 that through their faith, those who have gone before us, still speak. Imagine all the prayers and faith we have continually speaking/petitioning our Lord from those who have gone before us! 

Today, I pray for all in my circle, , may his spirit fill our Hearts with his everlasting mercy and grace. May we forgive those around us who have wronged us. Thank you for this new day, thank you for the sacrifice of your Son, so we may walk in his righteousness. Oh father God, we realize without Jesus we are not worthy to stand in your presence. Thank you for making a way.. Hallelujah, Glory to our Lord Almighty.. Amen..
Hebrews 11:4
By faith Abel offered God a greater sacrifice than Cain, and through his faith he was commended as righteous, because God commended him for his offerings. And through his faith he still speaks, though he is dead.