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Do You Want to be Made Whole?


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Chasing Distractions…

For the last 5 years I have been working on a Doctor of Ministry degree in Formational do what is necessaryCounseling.  While this is a degree that will empower me to position wounded people before an all-loving, all-powerful, all-knowing, God so that they may begin their healing journey, the path was designed to be completed in 3 years…I’m in year 5!  I realize that while finances, or the lack thereof has been a big part of why this program has not been completed, my chasing distractions has caused me to focus on things that have not paid off towards this degree in any way, shape or form. I have finished everything except the dissertation class and the writing of the dissertation.  So, what exactly would keep me from just finishing? Great question!!! Distractions would be my honest answer!

I’m now sitting with the wisdom of thought, that God has really high expectations of me and I’m really just starting to accept who God says I am.  I had brought and lived into so many lies of who the enemy said I was and couldn’t embrace who the inner-me said I am.  I had brought the lies; hook, line and sinker and paid a pretty penny for them.  You do know there is a cost whenever we do anything that is outside of the will of God for our lives?  Mind you, God has surrounded me with some wonderful people who constantly remind me of what God has deposited in me, how fearfully and wonderfully I’ve been made, and what a tremendous gift I am!  How sad I am that there are so many people I encounter who have lived their lives the same way I used to, that brought into the lies of the evil one and don’t realize who they are in Christ!

As I focus on getting this final leg of the this doctoral journey completed, I invite you to consider that the Lord has need of you.  This invitation is one that you can only embrace when you are really ready to focus, accept who God has created you to be and get prepared for the execution of your assignment.  I pray that you will look at those things that cause you to lose focus, to not believe, or to be so distracted that you think about giving up!  I want you to pray and renounce each and every one of them.  Don’t chase waterfalls, rabbits or anything else that will cause you to lose sight of all that has been deposited into you.  You have been created for greatness!!!the enemy distracts

Meditation Scriptures:

Philippians 1:6 (VOICE)  I am confident that the Creator, who has begun such a great work among you, will not stop in mid-design but will keep perfecting you until the day Jesus the Anointed, our Liberating King, returns to redeem the world.

Isaiah 26:3 (AMP)  “You will keep in [a]perfect and constant peace the one whose mind is steadfast [that is, committed and focused on You—in both[b]inclination and character]; Because he trusts and takes refuge in You [with hope and confident expectation].

Take good care of you,

Lisa

 

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Are You Ready…

Are you ready question - vintage wooden letterpress printing blocks, stained by color inks, isolated on whiteIn 1992 Hardees had a commercial jingle that asked a very simple yet equally poignant question.  The jingle asked, “Are you ready for some real food?”  This may seem strange, but if you are not ready to eat real food, you could possibly choke to death!  If you have not learned to properly process you food or if your digestive system is not equipped to breakdown the intake of food, it could be harmful to you.  Catch that in the spirit!  This year my family has celebrated several commencements which has caused me to consider how we go through many periods of preparation throughout our life’s journey and I’ve found that people often want to skip steps or stages when being prepared for the next thing.  This is very dangerous; because the thing you needed in development, that you may have missed or not handled properly, could be the very thing that has you stuck in a vicious cycle of dysfunction.

Why am I sharing this information you may ask?  I am a high school math teacher by profession and a minister of the gospel by call.  I deal with an enormous number of people who want to skip the preparation process.  In other words they want the proverbial shine without any of the grind.  I have students who are extremely anxious to be grown; until grown folks stuff starts to show up while they are still in their preparation period and they have NO clue about  how to handle their adult situations.

In ministry, I meet people who are eager to turn their collar around without even a thought of turning their life around.  There are so many people who are desiring to be in somebody’s pulpit or have leadership status without the necessary preparation; they are more interested in having a position than being in position!  We do God’s people a disservice when we are to represent God, but we don’t want to go through the necessary process of growth and development ourselves!

Why do we think we are able to make disciples when we don’t want to be discipled or have bucked the disciplining process for our own lives?  Fifteen years ago, I had a premature son who died shortly after birth.  If I didn’t learn ANYTHING else, I know for sure that I do not want another premature blessing because the loss of his life has been one of the most difficult experiences I’ve ever had to hurdle.  Hear me when I say, that life lesson taught me that there are many complications when we rush the process and don’t let patience (life) have its perfect work.

I’ve learned not to beg for meat if I’m still in my milk stage.  But, I’ve also learned that I don’t want to be an overgrown saint still sucking a bottle when I should be eating a full course meal.  So how do we balance this?  We seek God in all of God’s wisdom, and everything that we’re supposed to have will come our way in its proper time.  How are you handling your season of preparation? Will you be ready when it’s time to move to your next phase?

Meditation scriptures:

Numbers 11:18 a ~ Then tell the people this: “Prepare yourselves for what will happen tomorrow.  You will eat meat”.

Matthew 6:33 ~ Seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and then all these things will be given to you too.

Philippians 1:6 ~ I am confident that the Creator, who has begun such a great work among you, will not stop in mid-design but will keep perfecting you until the day Jesus the Anointed, our Liberating King, returns to redeem the world.

Take good care of you!

Lisa

 

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I Got You…

Every morning as I travel to work, I see two little girls walking to their bus stop.  This may seem insignificant to some, but to me it’s a beautiful sight because one of the girls appear to be around seven or eight years old and the other looks to be around four or five.  When I first began to see them I thought, “That’s a big responsibility for the older girl”.  And then I thought, “What a gift for the younger girl”!  Because the older girl moves the younger one to the inside – along the curb,  so that she is away from the street.  And she walks on the outside as they begin their trek to the stop.  They are constantly talking;  about what, I don’t know, but the younger one seems quite inquisitive!

It has to be a good feeling to have someone to walk with you and talk to you every morning as you start your day.  To have someone who cares about you; to protect you as you travel the road – gives you a sense of safety.  The Lord awaits us daily to have conversation and to journey with us, not only at the beginning of the day – but throughout the day!

I know what it’s like to be protected and cared for by a sibling.  I know how secure I feel even across the “50” threshold, when I’m with my family.  It’s a sense of security to have people who love and protect you around, on a regular basis.  This may not be everyone’s experience.  And while I love my family there have been, and even sometimes now, periods that I have feelings of loneliness.   Not because people aren’t present, but sometimes because of my circumstances.  So I retreat, only to find myself experiencing a need to be cared for. Sometimes I need someone to move me away from the proverbial oncoming traffic to the inside so that I won’t be harmed by what lies ahead.

The beauty of this part of my journey is that I am learning to give voice to those feelings when I need to feel safe, secure and significant. I’m also learning to be grateful for the circle of people that God is surrounding  me with; those who don’t see me as weak when I need to be loved, but appreciates my humanity and honesty in stating what I need.  What’s even better than that, I have learned to not only depend on my love ones to  meet those longings.  I have learned to cry out to the Lord and trust that the word is true in Deuteronomy 31:6 when it says that the Lord won’t leave me nor forsake me.

So, if you’re feeling lonely or in need of some TLC (tender loving care) ~ the Lord wants to communion with you.  Allow yourself to have some time with God and give voice to what you’re feeling.  He wants to travel with you to every stop in your life.  Allow the Lord to journey with you as you start your day.  Enjoy Him as you travel the roads of life.

Meditation Scripture:  Deuteronomy 31:6The Message (MSG)

“Be strong. Take courage. Don’t be intimidated. Don’t give them a second thought because God, your God, is striding ahead of you. He’s right there with you. He won’t let you down; he won’t leave you.”  

Take good care of you,

Lisaive got your back


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I’ll Be the One!

hear am i send meIn 2002 I had a what I thought was a dream that was repetitive for a few nights.  So, one night I decided to journal what was happening in this dream and maybe, just maybe, the Lord would allow me to sleep through the night.  I was awakened in what I will call, a semiconscious state, just long enough to take note as to what was transpiring.  I wrote what I remembered and the Lord allowed me to return to a peaceful sleep.  But the days after that were not so peaceful nor were they restful.  Because this dream was the beginning of my assignment in ministry!

Okay, so now I have to let you all in on this dream.  I dreamt that there was a demonic force running rough shod across the city headed from downtown Richmond into eastern Henrico where I reside.  When this thing approached my neighborhood, there rose up from what appeared out of nowhere – an elephant that raised up on its hind legs and gutted this thing from its neck all the way to its butt with its tusk.  And out of the demon’s belly poured, families, businesses,  churches and people – and they were healed.

I called a friend who interprets dreams the next day to explain the dream.  I shared that I knew this was a divisive force, it was regional and that the elephant was sent to set these families, businesses, churches and people free.  This elephant was sent to bring reconciliation and restoration.  My only question was who is the elephant so that I could tell the person.  Her immediate response was,  “Who did the Lord give the dream to Lisa?”  This was so not what I wanted to hear!!!

Why am I sharing this with you? I share because I want you to revisit the dreams and/or visions the Lord has given you.  If you haven’t had this experience yet, ask the Lord to show you where He desires to take you.  Ask for a glimpse of God’s plan for your life.   And yes, I realize that whatever the Lord has shown you (or is showing you) may seem overwhelming, incomprehensible and down right impossible!  May I encourage you?  David was sent to deliver lunch to his brothers and instead delivered a nation into its freedom.

Whatever the Lord is calling you to, you can absolutely do it – but, only through the power of the Holy Spirit.  No you can’t do it alone!  But you can do ALL things through Christ who gives you the strength.  Whatever you’re able to do without wondering how it’s going to get done is a job, not your calling.  The question on the table is, “Are you the one or should the Lord look for another?”

Meditation Scriptures:

Isaiah 6:8 NLT   ~ Then I heard the Lord asking, “Whom should I send as a messenger to this people? Who will go for us?”  I said, “Here I am. Send me.” 

Philippians 4:13 NLT  ~  13 For I can do everything through Christ,[a] who gives me strength.

Think on these things…

 

Take good care of you,

Lisa


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Inside Out…

Disney Pixar released an animated film in 2015 that they entitled Inside Out.  It was a wonderfully written movie, excellent graphics,  and a sobering story line.  The movie takes place mostly in the mind of an 11 year old girl named Riley Andersen.  She experiences five distinct emotions that have actually taken on personified characteristics.  They are: Joy, Sadness, Fear, Anger, and Disgust.  I capitalize them because they have become actual people (well, not really, but in her head they are).  These five emotions try to lead her through life as her parents  decide to move from the Midwest to San Francisco and now Riley has to adjust and maintain all of these people talking to her inside her head.

This week I want to invite you to investigate whose voice or which voice do you listen to when you have to make tough decisions are or when they are made for you.  How do you rationalize, negotiate, and navigate?  If the truth be told, my FEAR persona has had a dominate place in my life and it has caused many delays in my moving forward into what God is calling me into.  Fear will cripple you as if you are a double amputee, if you don’t fight back!  I pray that you will begin to think about which of your emotions are front and center and navigating you through this thing we call life.  Brokenness will cause us to make rash decisions with long term effects and costly consequences!!! You deserve more than that!

What do you believe about who you are, who God is, who the people you connect with (or not) really are and how your emotions allow you to move through the journey of life?  What are you in search of? Why do you do the things you do?  I want you to consider if your search is within or are you looking for some outside source to tell you who you are, how you’re supposed to feel and what lies ahead for you!  Much of our adult decision making is being driven by the voices in our head and they are very often lies and false beliefs that the enemy has sold us, we bought and we are now living into and paying the price for them.

Meditation Scripture: 2 Corinthians 10:5 [The Voice Translation]

We are demolishing arguments and ideas, every high-and-mighty philosophy that pits itself against the knowledge of the one true God. We are taking prisoners of every thought, every emotion, and subduing them into obedience to the Anointed One.

The scripture in Genesis 4:5-7 reminds us that sin is crouching and it wants to devour us, but we must master it! Please consider a journey within and listen to the voice of the one who created you, who knew you before you were ever dispatched into this earth realm.  I promise you this, you won’t be disappointed when you find the truth of who God says you are!!!  Dr. Terry Wardle suggests, that you were loved before you were lovable, chosen before you were acceptable and forgiven before you were redeemable!  Don’t let the enemy steal your joy with stinkin-thinkin!

 

INSIDE-OUT-8-1940x1092

                               Meet the voices in your head…

 

Take good care of you,
Lisa


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Give Us Our Daily Bread…

C. S. Lewis says, “It’s not the load that breaks us down, it’s the way we carry it”.  In Isaiah 46, the Lord promises that because He made us, He will carry, sustain and rescue us.   As I was driving home from bible study tonight, one of my dear friends sent me a word for the day.  Dictionary.com has a word of the day that is sent out to people who subscribe to receive it.  She stated that her sister had sent it to her and she wanted to share it with me and some others.  Well, as I read it I began to think about receiving a daily word… On this website I can see today’s word, I can look back and see what the word was yesterday and the day before that, but there is absolutely nothing I can do to see what tomorrow’s word is going to be.

This gave me pause! I began to think about how rarely I used to live in the present moment, which is true for many people.  We typically ponder over what has already happened or we worry about what may happen.  In doing so, we miss what’s happening right now.  The beauty of the present moment!  I have grown to have an appreciation and an awareness for what God is doing RIGHT NOW – even in the little things.  But I have to slow down to even acknowledge my present moments.

The more I thought about it, I realized there is nothing I can do to change what happened yesterday or the day before; and there’s no way I can determine what the Lord’s word will be for me tomorrow.  But I can seek him at this present time.  I can petition God for clarity, healing, God’s truth about my past experiences and pray for protection over my future endeavors.  And while I might not be thankful for everything that’s happening in my present moment, I can certainly thank Him in everything that I am experiencing. When I do this, I’m able to embrace – that whatever I’m in, it is going to somehow work out for my good – because God is intentional!

So, give yourself permission to just be in the presence of God! Exercise what is called Otium Sanctum ~ Holy Leisure!!! Rest in God’s presence.  Meditate on Isaiah 55:3-5, seek God and listen for your word of the day (your daily bread)…

Isaiah 55 (NLT)

“Come to me with your ears wide open.  Listen, and you will find life.  I will make an everlasting covenant with you.  I will give you all the unfailing love I promised to David.  See how I used him to display my power among the peoples.  I made him a leader among the nations.  You also will command nations you do not know, and peoples unknown to you will come running to obey, because I, the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, have made you glorious.”

Until then, take good care of you…


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Humpty Dumpty…

Humpty Dumpty is a character in an English nursery rhyme, who is typically portrayed as an anthropomorphic egg, though he is not explicitly described as an egg. Anthropomorphic simply means a non-human object being given human characteristics. I’m sure you remember this nursery rhyme, especially if you’re over 30 years old.  It went like this:
Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall,
Humpty Dumpty had a great fall.
All the king’s horses and all the king’s men
Couldn’t put Humpty together again.

Well, this has been playing over and over in my head for the last few weeks. I wonder if we took Humpty’s name out of this rhyme and put our name in, if this nursery rhyme would ring true. Maybe our fall hasn’t been a great one, but big or small it was a fall nonetheless and in most instances it has had a lasting impact in our lives! So, maybe it wasn’t a fall.  Could it be that it was a wounding experience and we’ve been trying to get the king’s horses and the king’s men to put us back together again?   I want to invite you to share your story with someone who is able to position you before “The King” who can put you back together again.

Jeremiah 18:2-6 (TLB) says:
2 Go down to the shop where clay pots and jars are made, and I will talk to you there. 3 I did as he told me and found the potter working at his wheel. 4 But the jar that he was forming didn’t turn out as he wished, so he kneaded it into a lump and started again. 5 Then the Lord said: 6 O Israel, can’t I do to you as this potter has done to his clay? As the clay is in the potter’s hand, so are you in my hand.

I want you to know that neither the king’s horses, the king’s women nor the king’s men can put you back together again. But the King certainly can!!! The Lord is waiting for us to trust Him enough to bring our broken pieces to Him. God wants our broken dreams, our broken hearts, our broken desires, our broken relationships – all of our brokenness! He wants EVERY chipped piece, so that he can make the great exchange with us! He wants our piece so that He can give us His peace!   Please seek help for the pain and brokenness associated with your childhood, teen years, young adult experiences and even middle age disappointments.

You can begin to live and make decisions from a place of power instead of a place of pain. Don’t let pride and what other people might think of you keep you from getting the help you need. I’m not sharing what I heard!  I’m telling what I know to be true.  Help is available! The Potter wants to put you back together again!!!

Until then, take good care of you,
Lisa