What’s Your Story? Yesterday, as we gathered together for our Sunday service, that was the morning’s topic. The question was not posed in a typical sermon format, but rather our pastor had several different people from our church come forward and share part of their own story. About six months ago, just as we began the new year, we invested together in a series called Into the Wild. The premise of the series was all about how we are called on a journey, and as we journey it is wild, but we have His promises and His presence as we go. Each person who shared their story, spoke of a portion of the adventure God had been taking them on over the past many months. All had the common thread of His promise and His presence that they held onto, even when the path before them seemed to be unmarked, and the ground unstable. Each one, was evidence of His faithfulness, as they had walked in obedience where they had been called.
This morning, I caught a glimpse of the bulletin. There in the top row, sits my smiling face, waiting to tell a story. At first, I kind of complained to the Lord, as I do not have as concrete of a path as some of the stories told yesterday. The gentle nudge did not let up, so I shall attempt to speak of the story He has been writing in me, as I have willingly walked into the wild…
By nature, I am an introvert. To those who know me, this is no great surprise, especially if observed in a large group. Also, as a result of both environment and of choice, I had become a very closed individual emotionally, and was unwilling to allow others to see past the smile. “The Wild” for me, has been a journey of learning to be vulnerable with trustworthy individuals. Willingness to share my heart, my thoughts, my fears, my hopes – without reservation, has been both a foreign and freeing phenomenon. Though I have in no way “arrived“, there is a visible change in my willingness to be “real” with those whom I trust, and I find myself opening my heart to more people than I ever thought I would. I know that I am still wandering in this portion of wilderness, yet He is with me, leading me, guiding me, and holding my hand as I travel in trust. Greater things are yet to come, and I look forward to all that He has for me – for all of us.
You will be His witness to all people of what you have seen and heard. – (Acts 22:15)
We are His, and no one can dispute what He has done in our lives, personally. Our story, is ours. He uses what we are willing to offer. May we be His mouthpiece to touch lives and transform communities.
What is your story?
What has Jesus done?
The trials you’ve faced,
the battles you’ve won?
Where have you wandered?
Where has your heart been?
Has He brought you through,
time and time again?
Think of the little,
He’s ever present,
wherever you are.
of each of our lives;
matter to Jesus,
that is why He died.
He willingly took,
every stain and scar;
so as we journey,
we’ll know Whose we are.
Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that each of us has a story. Thank You that our story is not a quick read, but rather one with many chapters. Thank You that our adventure into the wild does not end when You walk us through a challenging season, but rather, You call us to adventure with You our entire lives. Thank You that You are always present, and that You promise to never leave us nor forsake us. Forgive us for our fearfulness as we step out into the unknown. Make us courageous and strong to trust You in all things and at all times. Help us to clearly hear Your voice, so that we know which way we are meant to travel. May many come to know You as their Savior and King, as we live and love as an obedient offering. Be exalted, O God, through the story You are writing on our hearts. Amen.
© Shannon Elizabeth Moreno and Revelations in Writing, May 2011 – present.
Listen… be wise, and keep your heart on the right path. – Proverbs 23:19
Brothers and sisters, consider what you were when God called you to be Christians. Not many of you were wise from a human point of view. You were not in powerful positions or in the upper social classes. But God chose what the world considers nonsense to put wise people to shame. God chose what the world considers weak to put what is strong to shame. God chose what the world considers ordinary and what it despises—what it considers to be nothing—in order to destroy what it considers to be something. As a result, no one can brag in God’s presence. You are partners with Christ Jesus because of God. Jesus has become our wisdom sent from God, our approval, our holiness, and our ransom from sin. As Scripture says, “Whoever brags must brag about what the Lord has done.” – 1 Corinthians 1:26-31 http://bit.ly/XjPfc7
This is just to let you know where things stand! I will have to have chemotherapy and radiation starting in a little over a week! Most of the time I will not be home nor probably be online! The good news is that they say this is 95-98% successful! I know it is in God’s hands and my faith rests with Him! Please keep me in your prayers and I will update you when I can! God bless you! Patricia aka loopyloo
Update 1: They are surgically implementing a port for the chemotherapy on Saturday and will find out more about the radiation on Monday
Update 2: Had the chemotherapy port put in today and the radiation consult has moved to Friday due to possible ice storm. I would rather not have to be on the road and it is about an hour and a half drive! Once every thing gets started, I will stay with my sister-in-law part of the time! She is only a few minutes from the cancer center! God bless you and thank you for your prayers! Love you all!
Reading the stories about Woody Allen and Dylan Farrow brings back a lot of memories for me, sadly memories that I would just as soon forget. My earliest memory is sexual abuse from my step-father, but unlike Dylan’s mother, mine refused to believe. By her actions, she enabled my continued abuse, as well as the abuse of others that I will not mention here.
Listening to the defenders of Mr. Allen, accusing Miss Farrow of lying because they know him and he couldn’t possibly do what he has been accused of, strikes me of some of the worst of enablers. He couldn’t do it because to them he is the nice guy, the guy you would like to live next door.
I understand innocent until proven guilty,I just wonder if they offer that same courtesy to the person making the claim of abuse? Or are they so quick to claim superior knowledge because to admit that the person they think is so nice, may instead be a monster!
Barbara Walters first instinct was denial, and that is acceptable. None of us want to believe our friends are evil, but going to the lengths that she has and using her power and position to accuse Miss Farrow of lying makes her an enabler, and that is another face of evil!
February 6, 2014|11:09 am
President Barack Obama:
“Today we profess the principles we know to be true,” he said. “We know that each of us is wonderfully made in the image of God. We therefore believe in the inherent dignity of every human being – dignity that no earthly power can take away. And central to that dignity is freedom of religion – the right of every person to practice their faith how they choose, to change their faith if they choose, or to practice no faith at all, and to do this free from persecution and fear.”
I am so thankful to hear President Obama make this statement on religious freedom! It seems that he has had an epiphany and I wonder when he will instruct his justice department to withdraw their persecution and prosecution of people of faith here who think that being forced to pay for abortions or provide services for those who promote homosexuality is a violation of their beliefs!
“Promoting religious freedom is a key objective of U.S. foreign policy, and I’m proud that no nation on Earth does more to stand up for the freedom of religion around the world than the United States of America.”
This should be welcome news to the countries in which his administration has insisted that they must approve abortion in order to receive aid!
Mr.Obama also said:
Some of the reasons to promote religious freedom is when they protect the religious freedom of their citizens, this, in turn, helps U.S. national security.
“History shows,” he said, “that nations that uphold the rights of their people, including freedom of religion, are ultimately more just, more peaceful and more successful. Nations that do not uphold these rights, sow the bitters seeds of instability and violence and extremism. So freedom of religion matters to our national security.”
Indeed, it does seem that Mr. Obama sees clearly here! Perhaps we will see him speaking forcefully against the persecution of Christians that is happening in the Middle East and Africa right now and we will see him meeting with members of the group’s being killed and using his meetings with the Muslim Brotherhood to call them to account for the violence that the are taking part in and promoting!
After all Mr. Obama makes that point:
“Nations that do not protect religious freedom”, he added, will not be successful: “No society can truly succeed unless it guarantees the rights of all of its peoples, including religious minorities.”
Mr. Obama also said:
“We will keep standing for religious freedom around the world. That includes, by the way, opposing blasphemy and defamation of religion measures, which are promoted sometimes as an expression of religion, but in fact, can all too often be used to suppress religious minorities.”
To this I say amen and amen!!!! Hopefully, he will inform the U.N that any rule that is aimed at preventing the blasphemy of any religion will not be approved by this country!
God works in amazing ways, and perhaps He truly has worked through Mr. Obama to make us realize what a wonderful privilege and opportunity we have in this country!!! As for the words spoken by Mr. Obama at the prayer breakfast, we will have to wait and see if they are truly an epiphany on his part and he believes them himself, or if they are just words intended to placate his detractors! After all words without action are nothing more than empty air!!
Job 28:1Surely there is a vein for the silver,
and a place for gold where they fine it.
2 Iron is taken out of the earth,
and brass is molten out of the stone.
3 He setteth an end to darkness,
and searcheth out all perfection:
the stones of darkness, and the shadow of death.
4 The flood breaketh out from the inhabitant;
even the waters forgotten of the foot:
they are dried up, they are gone away from men.
5 As for the earth, out of it cometh bread:
and under it is turned up as it were fire.
6 The stones of it are the place of sapphires:
and it hath dust of gold.
7 There is a path which no fowl knoweth,
and which the vulture’s eye hath not seen:
8 The lion’s whelps have not trodden it,
nor the fierce lion passed by it.
9 He putteth forth his hand upon the rock;
he overturneth the mountains by the roots.
10 He cutteth out rivers among the rocks;
and his eye seeth every precious thing.
11 He bindeth the floods from overflowing;
and the thing that is hid bringeth he forth to light.
12 But where shall wisdom be found?
and where is the place of understanding?
13 Man knoweth not the price thereof;
neither is it found in the land of the living.
14 The depth saith, It is not in me:
and the sea saith, It is not with me.
15 It cannot be gotten for gold,
neither shall silver be weighed for the price thereof.
16 It cannot be valued with the gold of Ophir,
with the precious onyx, or the sapphire.
17 The gold and the crystal cannot equal it:
and the exchange of it shall not be for jewels of fine gold.
18 No mention shall be made of coral, or of pearls:
for the price of wisdom is above rubies.
19 The topaz of Ethiopia shall not equal it,
neither shall it be valued with pure gold.
20 Whence then cometh wisdom?
and where is the place of understanding?
21 Seeing it is hid from the eyes of all living,
and kept close from the fowls of the air.
22 Destruction and death say,
We have heard the fame thereof with our ears.
23 God understandeth the way thereof,
and he knoweth the place thereof.
24 For he looketh to the ends of the earth, and seeth under the whole heaven;
25 To make weight for the winds; and he weighteth the waters by measure.
26 When he made a decree for the rain, and a way for the lightning of the thunder:
27 Then did he see it, and declare it; he prepared it, yea, and searched it out.
28 And to man he said, Behold, the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom; and to depart from evil is understanding.
Jonah Chapter 3
1 And the word of the Lord came unto Jonah the second time, saying, 2 Arise, go unto Nineveh, that great city, and preach unto it the preaching that I bid thee. 3 So Jonah arose, and went unto Nineveh, according to the word of the Lord. Now Nineveh was an exceeding great city of three days ‘journey. 4 And Jonah began to enter into the city a day’s journey, and he cried, and said, Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown.
5 So the people of Nineveh believed God, and proclaimed a fast, and put on sackcloth, from the greatest of them even to the least of them. 6 For word came unto the king of Nineveh, and he arose from his throne, and he laid his robe from him, and covered him with sackcloth, and sat in ashes. 7 And he caused it to be proclaimed and published through Nineveh by the decree of the king and his nobles, saying, Let neither man nor beast, herd nor flock, taste any thing:let them not feed, nor drink water:8 But let man and beast be covered with sackcloth, and cry mightily unto God:yea, let them turn every one from his evil way, and from the violence that is in their hands. 9 Who can tell if God will turn and repent, and turn away from his fierce anger, that we perish not?
10 And God saw their works, that they turned from their evil way; and God repented of the evil, that he had said that he would do unto them; and he did it not. (KJV)
Jonah 1:17 Now the Lord had prepared a great fish to swallow up Jonah. And Jonah was in the belly of the fish three days and three nights.
Jonah2:1 Then Jonah prayed unto the Lord his God out of the fish’s belly, 2 And said,
I cried by reason of mine affliction unto the Lord, and he heard me;
out of the belly of hell cried I, and thou heardest my voice.
3 For thou hadst cast me into the deep, in the midst of the seas;
and the floods compassed me about:
all thy billows and thy waves passed over me.
4 Then I said, I am cast out of thy sight;
yet I will look again toward thy holy temple.
5 The waters compassed me about, even to the soul:
the depth closed me round about,
the weeds were wrapped about my head.
6 I went down to the bottoms of the mountains;
the earth with her bars was about me for ever:
yet hast thou brought up my life from corruption, O Lord my God.
7 When my soul fainted within me I remembered the Lord:
and my prayer came in unto thee, into thine holy temple.
8 They that observe lying vanities forsake their own mercy.
9 But I will sacrifice unto thee with the voice of thanksgiving;
I will pay that that I have vowed.
Salvation is of the Lord.
10 And the Lord spake unto the fish, and it vomited out Jonah upon the dry land. (KJV)
Please pray for a friend who was in an accident this morning and is in critical condition and pray for the family of the other man who was killed. Thank you and God bless!
Update: Andrew is doing well but please continue prayers for him as well as the family of the man who was killed! Thank you and God bless!