Art work by Bryan McFadden
Continue reading Glorious Wings
Art work by Bryan McFadden
Art work by Bryan McFadden
Continue reading Glorious Wings
Vindicate- (1) To clear of accusations,blame , suspicion or doubt with supporting arguments or proof. (2) to defend maintain or insist on the recognition of (3) to demonstrate or prove the value or validity of; justify (4) to exact revenge for;avenge.
God has vindicated me; making me clear of blame, shame and sin by sacrificing His only son Jesus Christ for my sins past, present and future.
He is my defender! He stands in the gap and covers me with amazing grace !! Insisting others see me as He sees me, through the blood of Jesus; clean without blemish, His daughter, His bride, His prized possession, the apple of His eye. My past pain, loss, bad choices, rebellion all thrown out! Clean slate. Jesus death gives me the right to accept and receive pardon and not be condemned for my past sins.
He gives this broken, shamed, scared woman who has made bad decisions that have tainted her reputation, value. He says you are forgiven, you are loved, you are important, you were created in MY image! You are well loved and highly favored. You are so valid to me that I justified you and secured your eternal salvation with me! How much more could I do to prove my love for you!!
Revenge is mine says the Lord (Romans 12:19) You need not carry the burden of un-forgiveness or anger; lay it all at my feet. I will make all things as they should be. I will always protect you! I will never leave or forsake you.
God is our vindicator in every aspect of definition. He has it covered. He is the complete and perfect provider of vindication! What an enpowering and comforting thought to truly understand that He has got your back!!
“As the father loved me, I also have loved you; abide in my love. If you keep my commands, you will abide in my love, just as I kept My Fathers commandments and abide in His love. These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full.” John 15:9-11
This week has been an amazing experience in trusting God and plugging in to his source in all circumstances. Monday morning I received a phone call that after a routine mammogram an “abnormality” had been seen and I would need to come back for more images and further evaluation. The fact that I work at a cancer center only heightened the possibility that this was going to be my diagnosis. I had signed up for a class on the names of God and it was beginning on the evening after receiving that call. As I opened God’s word and begin to dig deeply into Who He really is my spirit began to find calm in the mist of the unknown. At the end of our study for the evening we were ask to write a prayer of praise thanking God for all He had created for our pleasure. I began to write and my spirit smiled as I thanked God for one of my favorite things, sunshine I even drew a sun and colored it bright yellow; I then laughed as I thanked God for my second favorite thing which is chocolate in any form and the way it can also brighten my mood or put a smile on my face. While at work the next day, I turned to find a box of chocolate cupcakes with chocolate icing and a card on my desk. Upon opening the card I found a big sunshine with a smiley face looking back at me with the words praying for you in this time of “unknown” a tear came to my eye as I felt the very presence of God and the intimate way He was showing me that my heartfelt praise to Him the night before had been a pleasing fragrance to God! What an amazing testimony it became, as I shared the significance of the gift and how it was a message straight from the hand of God with the person who had delivered it!
I wish I could say I never had a doubt or fear from that moment forward, but to be completely transparent my old companion “anxiety” came a knocking. The voice of anxiety wanted me to ponder the possibility of a cancer diagnosis and fear the consequences that would bring. For a moment I did entertain the thoughts but as I felt fear and anxiety creeping through my veins I rebuked those thoughts and began to instead name the blessings that could come from what appears to be a blessing less diagnosis.
•God had brought me to this job 5 short months ago; it gave me health insurance benefits and probably ensured I would do my yearly exam and find the problem before it got any further.
• I would have more empathy for the patients as I walked in their shoes.
•I could use this situation to instill the importance of good health habits and yearly checkups to my daughter.
•God had given me the word “joy” for this year and I was going to learn how to have joy in all circumstances and He was preparing me for my destiny!
I never once thought that this would be anything other than bad news. But one thing I never lost sight of was “who” held my future! I kept my eyes on Jesus and my ears tuned to praise music all of which was powering me through the 4 day wait for the revealing of the unknown!
My heart leaped with joy as they told me it had been a false alarm; the new images cleared things up! Whew! what an intense 4 day journey that had become. I learned so much through this event being allowed in my life. I saw that God had changed me from the inside out and when my old companion anxiety came a knocking it did not find a comfortable place to hang out! Praise God! I also got to experience a very personal very caring God who, as I sought His comfort and guidance, filled me with a joy that made no earthly sense under my current looming circumstances , yet testified to His presence in my life to those around me.
A study of the word Joy revealed the Greek word Chara derived from Chario who’s definition is ” calm delight; gladness a feeling of calm and control no matter the circumstances or your emotional state”
I praise God today for my report of good health! and for sunshine and let’s not forget chocolate!!!
“ As the Father has loved me, so I have loved you. Now abide in my love” John 15:9
This year for the first time God has given me a word for the year and that word is Joy. In the short amount of time that I have had this word, God has revealed to me such a deep breath taking truth. The only way we can find real genuine joy is to abide in God’s love. God spoke to me in a devotional with these words “Apart from love, our potential for experiencing joy remains flat like a lifeless balloon. LOVE EXHALES THE FULLNESS OF JOY.
God created us with a deep desire and need for love; however, we try to fill our cup with all the wrong things. God is the only source by which our cup can be filled to overflowing! He tells us that if we will seek Him we will find Him. “ And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart” Jeremiah 29:13 He is not an elusive God who is unreachable; quite the opposite He is a personal God who wants an intimate relationship with us!! When we truly get this concept, this overwhelming, breathtaking love, then and only then, are we free to be all that God created and specifically designed us to be. “If the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed” John 8:36
The enemy slithers around us as women all the time spewing his lies and distorting the picture we have of ourselves. He tricks us into basing our self worth on the most trivial things. Take Valentines for an example how much emphasis do we place on how lovable and worthy we are based on whether or not we receive a valentine from that someone special? How often do we feel left out, unloved, unworthy during this time of year? My sweet sisters this is the biggest lie of all.
Know this truth you are worthy and lovable to God. “ For God so loved the world that He gave his only begotten son, that whosoever believes in Him shall not perish but have everlasting life” John 3:16 It does not matter where you have been or what you have done His love is unfailing, unending and never runs out. “For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved” John 3:17
I am sure most of you are familiar with the story of the Samaritan woman at the well and her encounter with Jesus. I am today’s version of that woman at the well. I had my innocence taken from me at the age of 5, I was adulterous, I was a divorcee, I was a control freak, I was anxiety ridden and the list could go on. I have seen some dark, dark times in my life; and just like with the woman at the well, Jesus knows all these things about me yet He ask me to sit at His feet and drink from the cup in his hand. Deep, refreshing gulps of his love and grace. Now I, just like the woman at the well, want to run and tell others come let me show you this man Jesus the Messiah; for He knows all that I have done and yet He loves me, He calls me daughter and restores my life with Living water so that I may thirst no more!!!! “but whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up into everlasting life” John 4:14
One of my favorite songs is “The More I Seek You” It is a song that deeply reflects the love of God and the desire He has for an intimate relationship with each and every one of us. I would like to ask you to do something for me as we prepare to listen to this beautiful song of worship and adoration of the King. Close your eyes. Picture Jesus as He was the man sitting at the well. The words of the chorus of the song say “ I want to sit at your feet, drink from the cup in your hand, lean up against you and breath, feel your heart beat!!!” Truly vision sitting at Jesus feet not in front facing him as if you are at a teaching but sitting with your back pressed up against His legs and leaning into Him; feeling His presence and the love flowing out of His cup. A love that is so overwhelming and all consuming, melting you as it washes over you. Worship the lover of your soul! Allow Him to refresh and restore you tonight. Take a long, deep drink of the living water He has to offer and find fulfillment knowing that you will thirst no more.
Happy Valentines from the lover of your soul, the source of true everlasting love!
2 Timothy 3:16-17. “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.
This has always been one of my favorite scriptures, but until recently I had not truly grasp the depths of these words or seen them in action in someone else’s life.
Growing up in the church has afforded me the privilege of hearing all the stories within the Bible more than once. They unfortunately had become just that, stories with life lessons but never truly impacting me to see how they could reproof, instruct or be profitable to my current life; that is until by Bible study last week!
I am going through the study “How Jesus broke the rules to set you free” by Sharon Jaynes with a dear friend and sister in Christ. Our study last week was the story of the “sinful woman” who worshiped at Jesus feet , pouring expensive perfume and wiping His feet with her hair. A story I was very familiar with, but never impacted as much as I was this time around. I was at first taken back by the intense emotion and compassion that my friend spoke in when reflecting on this well-known story; however the more she unveiled her heart the more I began to understand that my friend had experienced this kind of love for Jesus,who had forgiven her sins and set her free from the chains of regret and shame. This story was coming to life right before my eyes in a person that was not some distant figure in a story from long ago, but a real person who had been at the feet of Jesus herself not in the physical sense like in the story, but in a spiritual encounter of total surrender to the only one who could bring her life more abundantly. I felt so exhilarated to be a part of this experience with her! My heart raced a little as I realized the magnitude of what was unfolding before me! This “Bible story” was breathing life into my very soul. I was understanding, for the first time,that this story was an example of the life God desired from ME!
Luke 7: 47 “therefore, I tell you, her many sins have been forgiven – for she loved much. But he who has been forgiven little loves little.
These words from the mouth of Jesus pierced me to the core!! I have been forgiven MUCH!!!!! But does my love for Jesus reflect that fact? Am I willing, with total abandonment, to fall at Jesus feet and pour out my very best to the one who has redeemed me? Not worried about what others will think, what the religious rules are but in reckless abandonment surrender to Him, adore Him, praise Him in all I do and say? He deserves no less.
I am that sinful woman; yet God adores me and welcomes me to sit at His feet, to worship at His feet, to bring my best and completely turn my life over to the one who can give me abundant joy!
It all begins with Love. God’s unconditional, immeasurable love for me and my acceptance of this Love which then infuses me with abundant joy that flows from my life and splashed on all that I encounter! Now that is living loved!
“her many sins have been forgiven – for she loved much.”
Heavenly Father I so want to love you with reckless abandonment! To sit at your feet and worship and adore you for all you have done for me. I am so undeserving of this radical love you pour into my life!!! I am so grateful for the grace and mercy you have shown me. Forgive me for the times that I allow the expectations set by worldly rules to hinder my heart from fully embracing all you so selflessly give!!! I want to make you my number one priority and then everything else will fall into place! Thank you for never giving up on me. I love you! It is in the powerful name of Jesus I pray Amen!!
Galatians 4:6-7 And because you are sons, God has sent forth the spirit of his son into your heart, crying out Abba, father! Therefore you are no longer a slave but a son, and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ.
Jesus sole purpose of being born was to walk in our shoes,setting the perfect example and choosing, from the conception, to walk into his final fate of a brutal death by the worst means possible,crucifixion, all for the sole purpose of taking your place before the world even knew who you were. Before your mother ever laid eyes on you your eternal life had been purchased and left at your place of birth. A gift worth far more than the frankincense and Muir that greeted Jesus at his birth. Better than any inheritance left in a parents will.
Oh how much precious time and energy is wasted on storing up temporary treasures here on earth instead of embracing our rightful place as heirs of eternal life; which cannot be taken away by any earthly means.
1 Peter 1:3-4 ” Blessed be the God and father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to his abundant mercy has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled and that does not fade away, reserved in heaven for you”
Take a moment to grasp the truth of scripture, therefore the truth of who you really are. You are an adopted child in the family of almighty God which entitles you to be the sole heir of eternal life.
Ephesians 1:4-5. Just as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love, having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will.
God has placed the ultimate gift under your tree of life; you only need to accepted it.
1 Ephesians 13-14. In him you also trusted, after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in who also, having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, to the praise of his glory.
This Christmas season will you unwrap the gift that was so freely given by the birth of a savior in a manger; to the death of a savior on the cross, all planned out for YOU before the foundation of the world. The eternal gift of adoption into the family of God whose house is never full and whose compassion never runs out.
A definition of Transparency -having a picture or design that is visible when light shines through it.
Transparency is a word that is feared by so many. They see it as the path to isolation and judgment. Wearing a mask, living a charade; thinking you are the only one with that issue, that pain, that weakness. Making transparency an area where once again the enemy uses the almighty weapon of “fear” to mask the truth and stifle the light, keeping us in the dark unable to see the reality of our condition.
This is a lie straight from the mouth of the enemy into our thoughts and emotions. Satan does not want you to know the truth about transparency; that by its very definition sheds light on something to show it’s true picture. The truth about transparency is just the opposite of what we have been tricked into believing. It will bring freedom to your spirit and also shine light for others to see that they are not alone. Hope will be born.
God gave me a vision recently on the truth about transparency. He gave me a vision of being in a very deep, very dark, dungeon like hole; feeling dusty, grimy and isolated. He then whispered, all you need is light on the matter, and as I lit a small match that I found in my pocket I began to see the shadow of others that were there with me; I was not alone. In fact, as I span the light around this dark dungeon I began to realize there were thousands right there with me. All of us, trapped by our own demons and feeling alone and lost in this deep dark pit. As the light began to shine and the truth began to be revealed others there with me also lit a match and as the room was illuminated by the accumulation of each individual light we began to realize the truth and see our true condition and realize we were never truly alone.
God’s grace is as vast as the ocean; the supply is never ending. Once the truth has been revealed and this grace has hit you like a tidal wave with the force to push you out of the pit you found yourself in; the desire to share with others the freedom you have found is overwhelming. His spirit truly does speak through you into the lives of others! The more broken your life is the more cracks there are for the light to shine through.
Matthew 10:20 ” For it is not you who speak, but the Spirit of your Father who speaks in you.”
Over this past year as I have taken steps, mostly through this blog, to become completely transparent several things have transpired in my journey. I have found that a true freedom has been obtained and the illusion of chains that were holding me down in the pit I found myself in were loosened for good. Within this new freedom and the transparency of my life there has been the breaking of generational curses. I have found that I am not alone in the mess I have made of my existence but upon my transparency the door was cracked for others to feel bold enough to step toward the light and begin the journey to freedom themselves.
John 3: 19 ” And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.”
I would be lying if I told you that my transparency did not come with any consequences; not everyone will see the light as a beacon of hope. There will be some who reject your truth or try to crucify you for it. But know you are in great company. Jesus himself was crucified for speaking the truth and being the light of the world. Yet that did not snuff out the light, it only made it more brightly illuminate the pathway to heaven. The light of the word cannot be put out. It is the truth that we walk in when we choose to be transparent and allow the light of the almighty God of the universe, to shine through the broken pieces of our existence. We then reveal to those we share with, that grace abounds all the more today and everyday. Illuminating the illusions from the enemy; shining light that makes the true picture transparent. Lighting the way to the narrow path that takes us straight to the arms of Jesus.
2 Corinthians 1:12 ” For our boasting is this: the testimony of our conscience that we conducted ourselves in the world in simplicity and godly sincerity, not with fleshly wisdom but by the grace of God, and more abundantly toward you.”
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love, having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He made us accepted in the Beloved.” Ephesians 1:3-6
Whenever you feel unloved, unimportant or insecure, remember to Whom you belong! Scripture says that we are predestined to adoption as sons and daughters of Christ. So, no matter what life has thrown your way, no matter what bad choices you have made, no matter what storm you may be currently facing; even so come… come to the foot of the cross where true surrender takes place and the fountain of grace flows endlessly. Come be washed by the redeeming, all-powerful, life flowing stream of his amazing grace!; Where his blood ran red and our sin washed white.
When we focus on our flaws our perception of who we truly are is distorted and disfigured. Like a shattered glass we feel broken beyond repair. Even so come… Only His eyes of love tell the real truth. You are fearfully and wonderfully made. He adores you and longs to call you His! Wonderful, beautiful is what He sees. He is turning the tattered fabric of your life into a perfect tapestry.
Remember the passion and desire you felt the first time you fell in love with someone? They could do no wrong in your eyes, you could not wait to see them, everything about them made you smile, your every thought was on them, you could not wait till you could see them again. This is only a glimpse of the kind of adoration God has for you! He delights in our seeking Him. He cannot wait to meet with us each morning and to hear our prayers throughout the day. He desires a personal and intimate relationship with each and every one of us who chooses to come to his throne and accept the gift of grace.
Pursue your God the way he daily pursues You! He is calling you out of the darkness and into his light. He is singing over you. He is calling oh sinner come home, come home! So no matter where you have been or where you are currently headed it is never to late to turn around and run into the arms of your beloved savior. He is calling you now; even so come my dear child, come.
“‘Still, if you set your heart on God and reach out to him, If you scrub your hands of sin and refuse to entertain evil in your home, you’ll be able to face the world unashamed and keep a firm grip on life, guiltless and fearless” Job 11:13-15 (the message)
Unveiled – revealed to public knowledge or scrutiny; made evident or manifest.
Now the Lord is the Spirit; and where the Spirit of the Lord is , there is freedom. But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.” 2 Corinthians 3: 17-18
When we hear the word unveil, we most often attach negative feelings to it. We tend to think something being unveiled is revealing secret information that will bring a person down and make them pay for what they have done. Shining an interrogating, guilt producing, self-loathing spotlight on their condition as to bring them to their knees and put them in their place.
Unfortunately, many proclaimed Christians are the first to pull the veil and throw the stone of judgment and condemnation. This is exactly what I expected to be the result of my transparency. When I found myself in the midst of an affair, I fell at the foot of the cross to surrender my life to the control of someone greater than myself. However, I also felt the need to make secrecy a condition of the deal. God could fix me and fix my marriage but no one and I mean no one needed to know the darkness that had been in my life; that would remain a secret between a woman and her maker. God honored that request for 13 years. A little over a year ago the veil was lifted and all was made evident.
One evening after completing our devotion, Bryan turned to me and ask if I had ever cheated on him. I was so angry that after all of this time the truth was going to be revealed, but of course, I had to speak the truth. I then found out that my husband had cheated on me also. We kept God as our anchor and began the painful yet freeing journey of reconciliation and true healing. I came to discover that through this transparency a wall that I didn’t even realized existed was torn down between us. For the first time in 26 years of marriage we were able to feel true, unconditional love and what becoming “one” truly meant. The veil that separated us as husband and wife had been torn in half; although the tear was painful at first, it produced a freedom that allowed our love to truly grow and blossom into a genuine bonding of two souls.
The enemy would like nothing more than for us to remain behind the veils of shame, regret, guilt, secrecy or fear. From behind these veils, we never truly grasp the true message of Jesus Christ; that He came and walked on this earth; a man choosing to give his life as a sacrifice for our redemption and healing from the brokenness in our lives. His death on the cross tore the veil that separated man from the Holy of Holies, making access to the throne available to all who choose to accept and enter in! “Then behold, the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom; and the earth quaked, and the rocks were split” Matthew 27:51.
Why then do we continue to allow the enemy to hang a veil between us and God? A high price was paid for the tearing of the veil; do not allow the blood of Christ to be shed in vain. Proclaim it as the all powerful, healing, redeeming source that it is! “But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanses us from all sin” 1 John 1:7 Become unveiled and let the glory of the Lord shine through the broken pieces of your life! ” And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death” Revelation 12:11
I have not become transparent with my life because I have no shame or regret. Those were a very real part of the process of healing and restoration. Because of true repentance that comes from a heart of remorse and regret, I have received and better yet, truly understand the meaning and power of God’s grace. It is from that place of being immersed in grace, that I arise with the desire to defeat the enemy and no longer allow him to keep me down or keep me silent.
To be unveiled is not to have stones thrown at you for the wrong that is in your life; that is a lie straight from the enemy. To be unveiled is to be set free! It is to see yourself as God sees you! It is the lighting of the candle called “your life”, that through its brokenness can bring hope and life to those who are still behind the veil and chained in the darkness. Be the beacon who lights the way to the Savior; the one and only source of life and life more abundant.
GOD HAS CHANGED MY STORY!
From an abused little girl who became an adulterous wife;
into a redeemed, restored and healed woman with a new identity;
a restored and redeemed marriage;
and a history that has become His story of the power of His unfailing love, mercy and grace!!
I have a new identity as a daughter of the King!!
” For you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light” 1 Peter 2:9