Spirit

A0862CF6-FE64-4668-877B-D4487887128A

Tether me only to You, Holy Spirit….because in You alone will I fully be alive – only You can bring out Your Triune purpose in me…..and in You alone will I be able to fully allow others that same gracious, fertile ground……AND There, we all *together* (blessed unity!) will have interactions that will be as organic as multiple branches in Your single, Living Vine. 🌿🍇

((Keep me on the other hand, from being dependent on myself or others – detached and in heart, lifeless…..I would rather be free and real and full of Your life.))

Amen.

“Beware of being in bondage to yourself or other people. Oppression and depression never come from the Holy Spirit of God. He never oppresses, He convicts and comforts. The spirit of God is always the Spirit of liberty.” ~ Oswald Chambers

“….the unity in the Spirit in the bond of peace.” ~ Eph. 4:3

May your heart be blessed,

Lori

 

Face Up

Prayer feels like that – like I am floating in the waters of this earth, my back supported by His arms lest I sink and suffocate. .

Face up, I reach outstretched with my internal breath, His Spirit interceding and filling my lungs with words and praise and comfort and direction.

~
Face up, He IS the air you and I breathe and the One in which we truly live…..HE is the Word we seek to hear unmuffled by this underworld…..and being ever toward Him we seek to boldly rest, steady and alive.

“Pray without ceasing” 🌿 1 Thes. 5
“In Him we live and move and have our being” 🌿 Acts 17
”Abide in Me and I in you” 🌿 John15
“Come boldly before the throne of grace” 🌿 Hebrews 4

{{Any prayer requests? I would love to bring them before Him with you.}}

 

Live Like a Flower

Live like a flower: open- faced and looking up……..soaking and resting and being.

🍃

How do we achieve our life’s purpose? How do we even know what it is?

All of us want a life of meaning, but in seeking to attain that, we can become too frantically focused on keeping busy to achieve or we can even try to push ourselves into the mold that others call success.

YET, counterintuitively, the way to your unique purpose is found in resting. You see, we are told in Ephesians 2 that we are GOD’S “poiema”or poetry piece – made and determined beforehand in Christ.

{{How beautiful a thought!}}

We are not our *own* workmanship, we are His. He just asks us to rest in the life-giving Vine so He can direct us to fulfill that abundance…….as organically as a flower in a field.

. . “…walk out into the fields and look at the wildflowers. They never primp or shop, but have you ever seen color and design quite like it?…..If God gives such attention to the appearance of wildflowers—most of which are never even seen—don’t you think he’ll attend to you, take pride in you, do his best for you? What I’m trying to do here is to get you to relax, to not be so preoccupied with getting, so you can respond to God’s giving. People who don’t know God and the way he works fuss over these things, but you know both God and how he works. Steep your life in God-reality, God-initiative, God-provisions. …Give your entire attention to what God is doing right now, and don’t get worked up about what may or may not happen tomorrow.” Matthew 6 (MSG)

I Need You

Father, it is so easy for me to drift from you – to forget that you are all I need, that You are the One who will satisfy all those empty spaces I clamor to fill. …….Thank you for your faithful and patient presence in my life – always drawing me back with your comforting staff. .

I need you. I really need You.

Lead me to those green truths my soul is lacking, so I can feast and lay hold of You that much more. May You increase, and may what I think “I” need become less important.
To You be the glory.
Amen.

 

With All My Senses

29572222_10211309180865396_4483511069917787841_n

“That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death” Phil 3:10
~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The Fellowship of Suffering ~ A Divine Exchange

Open my eyes to clearly see;
the path You took of humility.

Bend my ears to every sound;
Your silence cried out when beaten down.

Enhance my taste to every good
that joy in pain You understood.

Train my scent and oil my prayer –
a sweet smelling savor to break that snare.

Then full my arms to Thee embrace
as I fellowship in sufferings face to face.

~~~~~~~~~~

“Consider Him who endured such contradiction of sinners against Himself, lest you be weary and faint in Your mind.” ~Hebrews 12:3

fullsizeoutput_7d2

Mind-Numbing Ruminations

“Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest….”

Several years back, I was standing on the precipice of an immense life change, carrying a weight of confusion and multiple emotions.  Our entire social network was pulled out from under us, and almost everything we believed was henceforth put on the table for questioning.  My thoughts did not know where to stop or start.

During that time we “got away” to a vacation on Banderas Bay, a beautiful alcove surrounded by the Pacific. One morning, I was walking on the beach, picking up rocks, and ruminating on the same heavy thoughts. I was mentally worn.

While in wordless prayer, God brought to my mind this well-known verse and used my surroundings for a perfect word-picture:

“Casting all your care upon Him for He cares for you.”

…..So there was little me, at the edge of the big-wide ocean with a rock that I had been looking at intently and carefully massaging in my hand. Casting…….
“What does it mean to cast?,” I thought as I looked at the stone weighing down my hand.
……I wound up a pitch…..Followed through, and released……….

img_6927

When I cast it into the ocean, the feel of it leaving my hand
And the sight of it dropping into the vast waters….
The satisfying sound of its fall……
The disappearing……………………
That wonderful disappearing…………
Where I could no longer carry it or feel it anymore….
Where I could no longer SEE its lines and colors…….
helped me then, and in days to come,

to release the actual stones weighing down my mind;

to release them into HIM, where their weight is rightly measured and beautifully hidden;

to release them upon His vast character and consuming love…… for me, for you, and for those we need to forgive.

img_6918

May we live the blessing of a life that is light and free.

“….Walk with Me and work with Me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with Me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.” – Jesus

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Extras:
References: Matthew 11:28-30 (MSG); Psalm 54:22; 1 Peter 5:7; Psalm 27:13,14; Philippians 4:6

Definition of “Casting”: from Strong’s 1997 = epiriptĂł:  to throw upon, place upon, to throw away, throw off to cast upon, give up to, God.

 

Fitting quote: “If I must seek an identity outside of myself, then the accumulation of wealth, power, and honors allures me. Or I may find my center of gravity in interpersonal relationships. Ironically, the church itself [and other relationships] can stroke [the sin nature] by conferring, and withholding honors, offering pride of place based on performance, and creating an illusion of status by rank and pecking order. When belonging to an elite group eclipses the love of God, when I draw life and meaning from any source other than my belovedness, I am spiritually dead. When God gets relegated to second place behind any bauble or trinket, I have swapped the pearl of great price for painted fragments of glass.” – Manning

Prayer Challenge

In my prayers of deepest longing,

I ask You to saturate, invade, take over.

~~

And I yield to You my dearest belongings;

my fears and speeding thoughts by your love, lowered.

~~

Here poised, can I pray without condition –

willing,
surrendered to face

pain for Your end, all-wise?

~~

And, to set my face steadfast –

resting,
knowing Your compassion overwhelms all hurt,

And You, Yourself, shall be the prize?

“Comparison is the Thief of Joy.” T. Roosevelt

This has been my struggle lately.  (Maybe some can relate?) I *too* often compare myself to others and find myself less-than or lacking. I know I shouldn’t do that, but I do. This is what it is like: I picture myself in the large room of His Body where we all occupy, and my head turns from side to side……and then down at me. I am dissappointed. But then  these words fall on my ears:

“Certainly, when they measure themselves by themselves and compare themselves to themselves, they show how foolish they are.” ~ 2 Corinthians 10:12

After a sigh of “that’s right,” I look up and see His eyes looking INto mine. His look is piercing and yet comforting. He takes my hands, my palms up with His hands under mine and I hear Him say, “I. Know. You. I don’t make mistakes. Don’t look around or down, but turn your eyes upon Me. I always give exactly what is needed.”

I allow His words to seep in and almost literally, feel a weight leave my body.

“The LORD is my shepherd; I have all that I need.” ~ Psalm 23:1

Happy Holidays

Sending my love and appreciation to all my friends and wishing you the very Best this Christmas season.

This can be a very difficult time for many – so I send this with thoughts especially toward those empty spaces we all tend to carry inside….with prayers that they would be filled.

“Could we with ink the ocean fill,

And were the skies of parchment made,

Were every stalk on earth a quill,

And every man a scribe by trade;

To write the love of God above

Would drain the ocean dry;

Nor could the scroll contain the whole,

Though stretched from sky to sky. From “The Love of God” by F. Lehman (1868-1953)

**************************************

“For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, whom every family in heaven and on earth is named, that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith—that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.

Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen.” Eph 3

When Your Life Has Lost Color

Coffee cup and leaves

“Time is the brush of God, as he paints his masterpiece on the heart of humanity.”
~ R. Zacharias

Fall is a beautiful season and {I strongly believe} it should last in full color through November. But it doesn’t. Ever.

Just maybe, however,  it’s quick passage is meant to remind us that we also do “fade as leaf.” That time is very, very precious – and it’s beautiful offerings are to be carefully taken in as though our season is also very short.

How easily I forget this. Yesterday He graciously reminded me to Let. Him. In.
……to let Him into the innermost chamber of His temple and to let Him “search me and know my heart, try me and know my thoughts.” He reminded me to be There, in the Holiest of Holies, *with Him* unafraid, unashamed. 

His call was refreshment. His call brought color to what was beginning to feel –  even without me noticing – a dull black and white, a blur of sorts, instead of a slow thoughtful passage.

Let’s open our doors to Christ – just like we ‘take in” a beautiful scene in nature. Let’s *join Him* in the blessed process of His painting His masterpiece upon our hearts – as we sit at His feet, behold His glory, hear His words, and move at His call.

“Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and sup with him, and he with me.” ~ Rev. 3:20