Tag Archives: Freedom

Very Glad

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GladBe VERY glad today!  Glad that you have the freedom to go to the house of the Lord and worship Him.  Glad that you can connect with a community of believers that love and support you.  Glad that you belong to Him and He belongs to you.

Today … Go to the house of the Lord and encounter Him … and come home changed.

“I was very glad when they said to me, ‘Let us go up to the house of theLord.'” Psalm 122:1

Let us go…

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imagePassion.  What is passion?  What am I passionate about?  And at my “seasoned” time in life why do I find myself at this crossroads of passion?  Why can’t I just relax…coast…enjoy life in the slow lane?  This is where my heart is right now, wondering and searching.

I love really digging to understand what a word means…so I did some digging on passion.  This is what I found.  Passion is a powerful, strong, barely controllable emotion of love, joy, hatred or anger; a fiery love, boundless enthusiasm, the sufferings of Jesus; a powerful, deep, overwhelming, intense emotion.  Synonyms of passion are:

  • Fervor… great warmth and intensity of feeling;image
  • Fire… a burning passion;
  • Zeal… a strong enthusiastic devotion to a cause and a tireless diligence to its furtherance; and
  • Ardor… a fiery intensity of feeling

In discovering our passion, we are looking for that which we have a fiery, powerful love.  What are we willing to suffer for.  What gives us uncontrollable joy.  What burns inside of us.  What are we willing to sacrifice time, energy, finances, and comfort to pursue!  That is our passion.  That is what we were created to do…the thing we HAVE to do.

And here I am, at the age I find myself, searching and reevaluating that passion.  To do that, I begin with the things I have that fiery, powerful love for…

I love Jesus with that fiery, powerful love.  I am passionate about knowing Him more.  I am passionate about loving Him more.  I am passionate about obeying Him.  I am passionate about walking out this journey in a way that pleases Him and impacts those I “bump into” along the way.  I am passionate about fulfilling His calling and purpose for me and helping others do the same.  He is love and He burns inside of me.

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I love my family with that fiery, passionate love.  Caring for them gives me more joy than I can express in words.  There is nothing that I wouldn’t do or give for them.  They are one of my reasons for living.  I am passionate about loving my husband, my children, my children by marriage and my grandchildren.  I am passionate about growing my marriage and keeping the love and romance alive.  I am passionate about our marriage life purpose.  I am passionate about growing as a family and having fun together.  I’m passionate about keeping our relationships strong and vibrant.  I’m passionate about impacting their lives and leaving them a brightly lit path of hungering and thirsting after God and His ways.

I love families with that fiery, passionate love and I am passionate about the legacy that each family is passing on to the generations to come.  Legacy WILL just happen but it may not be the legacy we want to leave.  So legacy that makes a difference is intentional.  It takes focus and vision and work.  I am passionate about equipping and enpowering families to build a legacy that will impact their families today and their generations to come.

imageI love the next generation with that fiery, passionate love  and I am passionate about preparing them to live a life of total abandon to God and His ways.  I want to be a part of preparing a generation to truly be one to seek His face and His heart above all else and make an imprint on this world.

I love the older generation with that fiery, passionate love.   I’m passionate about making them a priority and honoring them.  They have value and purpose and I’m sickened at how they are pushed aside and devalued even by the Christian community.  I want to be a part of empowering them to walk out their God-given destiny and see them impact the generations that will follow them..being useful and valued all the days of their lives.

I love community with that fiery, passionate love.   I am passionate about nurturing community among followers of Jesus and helping us find ways to stop being the church on the corner…to stop spending all our time and money to get people to come to our corner.  We need to integrate ourselves into they very fabric of our community.  We need to be His fragrance, His flavor, His light in the world.  It is time to stop going to church and start BEING the church.  Yeah…I’m passionate about that!

I love women with that fiery, passionate love.  I am passionate about equipping and empowering them to be everything God created them to be so they can walk out their purpose impacting their families and their world.  I’m passionate about seeing women walk in freedom.  I’m passionate about helping women impact generations of girls and women through the way they live their lives today.

I love leaders with that fiery, passionate love.  And even though I feel unqualified I still imageam passionate about equipping, encouraging and restoring leaders.  Something in me is ignited and comes alive when I can stand in a group of leaders and share life-giving principles, correction and freedom that empowers them to BE and not just to DO.

I love hurting people with that fiery, passionate love, especially people hurt by church, by Christians and by pastors/leaders.  I’m passionate about helping them heal and forgive and reconnect to God and His great love and purpose for them.  To see them walk in freedom.  To see them become a part of a heathy, caring community of Believers.

I love to travel with that fiery, passionate love.  I am passionate about this world our God created and the people groups He has created and positioned to know Him.  I am passionate about seeing His World and His people.  I want to share Him with all His creation.

So… this is where I find myself…wondering, searching.  What do I with all of this?  I go to Him, into His Presence and let Him direct my life.  “Because IN Christ I find out WHO I am and WHAT I’m living for.  A very long time before I even heard of Jesus, He had His eyes on me.  He already had designs for my life, about me being a part of His purposes.” (Ephesians 1:11-12)

I’m passionate.  I’m fearful.  I’m hopeful.  I’m excited.  I’m pursuing.

Living WITHOUT passion is not really living.  Living WITH passion is living a life that leaves an imprint on this world.  Passion propels your dreams.

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Pursuing His fiery, passionate love…

Cheri

A Wondering Heart

A Season of Dirt

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A Season of Dirt

I don’t like dirt. It’s dirty. It requires work … hard work. It doesn’t go away on its own. And we have to face dirt … and be willing to get dirty in order to bring about the desired change: to be cleaned…to be changed…to be transformed.

I’m guessing that you, like me, have been in seasons of facing the dirt. I recently asked God to do something that has and is requiring me to get dirty so He can bring about the change that my heart is crying out for. I asked for this season and I continue to choose to submit to this season … even when it would be much easier to quit. My heart cries out for Him to search me and to know me and to help me to face the wicked and hurtful things in me … and lead me through the dirt to the transformation and to freedom.

“Search me [thoroughly], O God, and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts! And see if there is any wicked or hurtful way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting” (Psalm 139:23-24 AMP).

You see, I really want to know Him more. I really want more of Him and less of me. I want to be a part of what He is doing in the world today. I want to be free and whole in Him. I want His light to shine so brightly in and from me that it lights up the darkness: that it attracts others to Him.

John the Baptist said, “He (Jesus) must increase, but I must decrease. [He must grow more prominent; I must grow less so]” (John 3:30 AMP).  So I submit to the season of dirt…so that I might decrease and that He increases in me.

I am really tired of the same stuff popping up; I want real transformation. And transformation can be long and startling and shocking and difficult. But I submit to His work of transformation in my life because I want to really please Him … I want to be the person He sees in me: the one He created.

When the pressure is on I want people to see and hear Jesus in me;  I want Him to come oozing out. So I submit to the potter … to the transformer … to the completer … to the lover of my soul … submitted to this season He has me in at this moment: a season of DIRT.   Are you willing to submit to a season of dirt?

In this season I must be willing to DIG … and to allow Him to DIG … DIG up the dirt. Some of the dirt I’ve just gotten used to, so much so I just didn’t notice it anymore. Some of the dirt I’ve rationalized; some of the dirt I’ve blamed on others. The digging hasn’t been fun and, at times, I have been tempted to go back to the blame-game, the rationalizations, and the complacency. But I am committed to experience real change and real transformation.

King David once said:”Against you, and you alone, have I sinned;
I have done what is evil in your sight.”. (Psalm 51:4a NLT).

Seeing the dirt for what it really is, allowing it to be exposed, and confessing to God the dirt He already knows about has been a necessary part of the digging in my life … just as it was in King David’s.  Crying out for mercy, thankful for His unfailing love…His great compassion…

Allowing the Dirt to be Exposed

“Have mercy on me, O God,
because of your unfailing love.
Because of your great compassion,
blot out the stain of my sins.
Wash me clean from my guilt.
Purify me from my sin” (Psalm 51:1-2 NLT).

Then there has been the ERADICATION  of the dirt: allowing Him to do the cleansing work in my heart…purifying me. Only He can eradicate the dirt in my life and in my heart. As I allow Him to do this work I find a new heart, a heart of flesh … and the heart of stone has been taken. He gives me a heart that is sensitive and responsive to Him.

“And I will give them one heart [a new heart] and I will put a new spirit within them; and I will take the stony [unnaturally hardened] heart out of their flesh, and will give them a heart of flesh [sensitive and responsive to the touch of their God]” (Ezekiel 11:19 AMP).

In this season of dirt, often I have found myself RESURRECTING the dirt. This happens to all of us when we live under guilt and condemnation. But this is NOT God’s doing:  in Him there is no condemnation and no guilt! The Word tells us there is NO condemnation, he frees us, “So now there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus. And because you belong to him, the power of the life-giving Spirit has freed you from the power of sin that leads to death” (Romans 8:1-2 NIV ).

Instead, there is cleansing and newness and freedom.  He does a complete work in us, “Purify me from my sins, and I will be clean; wash me, and I will be whiter than snow” (Psalm 51:7). We must choose to stand in the freedom He gives and we must refuse to pick up the things that bind again.

“So Christ has truly set us free. Now make sure that you stay free, and don’t get tied up again in slavery to the law” (Galatians 5:1 NLT).  He REALLY, REALLY sets us free…and it is our job to stay free!

It is so amazing! He actually TRANSFORMS the dirt. He takes what the enemy means to use to utterly destroy us and He transforms that into the very thing that brings us victory and power in order to bring us and others through the seasons of dirt into the life of freedom.

“Do not be conformed to this world (this age), [fashioned after and adapted to its external, superficial customs], but be transformed (changed) by the [entire] renewal of your mind [by its new ideals and its new attitude], so that you may prove [for yourselves] what is the good and acceptable and perfect will of God, even the thing which is good and acceptable and perfect [in His sight for you]” (Romans 12:2 AMP).

And when He transforms our dirt we can then help others with their dirt…with love and compassion and mercy…knowing that they too can have the dirt transformed and find freedom!  “Then I will teach your ways to rebels, and they will return to you” (Psalm 51:13).

He Transforms Our Dirt

So let us submit to the seasons of DIRT…

     Digging up the dirt.

               Irradicating the dirt.

                         Resurrecting the dirt.

                                   Transforming the dirt.

…as He does a complete work in us…knowing that on the other side of the dirt, the brokenness turns to joy!

The Brokenness Turns to Joy!

“Oh, give me back my joy again;
you have broken me—
now let me rejoice.
Don’t keep looking at my sins.
Remove the stain of my guilt.
Create in me aclean heart, O God.
Renew a loyal spirit within me.
Do not banish me from your presence,
and don’t take your Holy Spirit[d] from me.
Restore to me the joy of your salvation,
and make me willing to obey you” (Psalm 51:8-12 NLT).

Submitting to a Season of Dirt!

Cheri

                    

If and Then

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For such a little word, “IF” is enormous! “IF you will do something for me THEN I will do this for you.” One such statement that I’m really learning lately is “IF I will eat healthy and exercise THEN I will lose weight and be in better health.” Oh, the power of “IF”!

“If-then” statements are just what the name implies. They tell us that “if” a certain thing happens, “then” this other certain thing will happen in response. God uses these types of statements: “if we do this, then He will do that”. In our walks as Christ-followers, we must understand what God is saying to us in these “if-then” statements. It is one of these “if-then” scriptures that triggered this blog and is very fitting as we celebrate the fourth of July.

As we are celebrating our country’s birth and freedom, we find ourselves in a place of decision. We have sat by silently and apathetically regarding our country and our rights as citizens as well as our freedoms for far too long. Oh, we quote the Scriptures but do we truly hear what they are saying to us? To truly hear means to listen and then to respond by walking out God’s Word in obedience.

Our country is at a very critical crossroads and I believe that what will make the difference starts in God’s Church … which is you AND me … And at this critical juncture, God says IF…THEN…

“If My people, who are called by My name, shall humble themselves, pray, seek, crave, and require of necessity My face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven, forgive their sin, and heal their land.” (II Chronicles 7:14 NLT)

God has something He really wants to do for us, for our country … And it follows our obedience to His “IF”.

IF … We His people … Not those who don’t know Him but those of us who do!

IF … Those of us Who are called by His Name … Not the rest of the world, nor because of your political power … But because we are His!

IF … We will humble ourselves … Strip away all pride … Know that without God we are nothing … that He is our very life. We must humble ourselves before Him … fall down before Him in total abandon.

IF … We will pray … Not just a “God, bless America” prayer but a prayer that bombards Heaven … Praying for His will (to be) on earth as it is in Heaven. We the Church must unite as one in prayer for our nation!

IF … We seek His face … Crave Him … Require Him as a vital necessity. I mean we have to go after God, and make sure that He is our priority and the love of our lives.

IF … We turn from our wicked ways. Repentance must start with us. We’ve gotta clean up our act. We’ve gotta cry out to God to clean our hands and to clean our hearts.

THEN … IF we will do these things, not just today and not just in a pinch but, instead, will make them the very foundation of our lives … 

THEN … He WILL hear our cries from Heaven…

THEN … He WlLL forgive our sin!

THEN … He WILL heal and restore our land.

And THEN we will experience complete freedom … Freedom in our country … Freedom in our hearts, and freedom in our lives!

“If” and “Then” lead us to freedom … True Freedom!

Let’s Do the “ifs” so we can get the “thens”!

Cheri 295221_10150995473799906_1538259451_n