Words have power. Written words provide proof. You can read them, and reread them whenever you want. They can speak life to someone who needs encouragement. They can speak death to someone who is being deceived. The choice lies within you. How is it that you want people to remember you? Encourager...that is the gift that God has laid on my heart. To use my written, spoken, and/or sung words to lift people up. To be one link in their road to healing, restoration, joy. I have been without those things, and I claim them to be mine again. If you want me to seek God on a prayer for a specific situation...that is why I am here. I would LOVE LOVE LOVE to pray God's Word of Life over you.

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Relevant Reflections-Are You Sludge-Like?

I woke up one morning feeling that the day had come that God wanted me to write this post. Knowing that, the enemy started messing with me. Ugh, so early. It was too early to be messed with. I was not in the mood. Haha! I didn’t even realize the enemy was doing it at first and that is the most frustrating part!

It was about 8am when I first woke up. (That NEVER happens! I remember that there was no school that day…and my kids actually slept in! *Cue the angelic music here!*) I laid in bed for another 15 minutes and then woke up annoyed that I wasted that much time of silence to write! I had allowed myself to be distracted.

Once I finally pulled myself up and put my feet on the cold floor I decided it was time to make coffee. (I love to write with a steaming cup of flavored coffee next to me.) Distracted.

I loaded the wood stove full so that my house would warm  up now that I was out of my comfy, cozy bed. Distracted, necessary, but distracted.

I put in The Lion King for my now very awake children. Distracted.

I wiped off all of my counter tops. Distracted again!

Are you seeing the sly scheme? I was doing everything but what I knew I had been called to do. When I started to clean out my dog’s food dish…it finally occurred to me that I was being distracted from God’s purpose for my morning. UGH! I can’t stand that little punk! No more distractions!

By this time it was 9am…and I was getting stubborn! The enemy really should know better than to mess with this girl and her writing. Oh how he tries to keep me silent…but what he so often forgets is that my Daddy is bigger than him! :p Haha!

Soooo, onto sludge. I am starting with the mental picture of sludge today. I want you to think of something that is sludge-like. Ugh…even just to say type that word makes me feel gross. No matter the tone you try to say it in…it is not at all attractive. As Pastor Les spoke a few Sundays about stagnant water, I was picturing sludge. If it weren’t the middle of winter here in Pennsylvania, I would hike up our hill and take a picture of a large stagnant puddle of water that is just inside of our corner of the woods. (You know I would! My husband knows I would too! Most of the time he smiles and rolls his eyes at what I just simply ‘have to capture’ ‘ for effect’! Haha!) This puddle…is not a pretty sight. To make things worse…it is right in the middle of our trail. I am told that people used to ride horses and four-wheelers on our path through the woods because it is a nice, wide path. And this stinkin’ (both literally and for effect) puddle, takes up the whole path for about 10 feet. Annoying? Yes-sir-ee!

I don’t trust my children to not test me on the “Don’t splash in that puddle2012 Fall Photo Shoot 406 or you will regret it!” instruction that I have given them. And when if that day comes, I will do what every scrap-book minded mother would do, take a picture. Before I rescue (as long as the possibility of actually being hurt is out of the question) I will capture what filth can come from something that USED to be clean.

Think about it. Water. It is one of God’s most perfect and utilized creations. It is from Him, for our daily use in life. It is used to keep us healthy. To cleanse us. To cook our food. To grow our food. Dad's New 'Office' 189 Etc…

Water always starts out clear. (Unless you live in a little country house like mine…then ‘pale rust’ is the shade I would call it! Haha!) How does something that started out to crystal clear and perfect, turn into something so disgusting and unrecognizable? How does water become so sludge-like? How does it fall from the sky transparent and perfect for nourishment…and eventually turn into something that everyone avoids? How does a simple mud puddle turn to complete blackness with the most awful stench!?

It is quite simple acutally. It takes abosulutely no effort at all to go from fresh...to stagnant. Therein lies the problem...
Water falls down pure and perfect and then just sits. Motionless. Void of life. It’s usefulness being wasted. It’s rancid smell obvious to those who are near. No one will walk close for fear of coming away with the same stench. Any new droplets of water that fall into the stagnant puddle…immediately become black and carry the same vomit-inducing odor. Have I painted a clear mental picture for you? Movement is vital!

Have you ever known a person who has slowly become stagnant? Someone who doesn’t seem to be fulfilling much of their life's purpose. They don’t even seem to try. They are the ‘glass half empty’ type. You leave a conversation with them and feel more depressed about your own circumstance. Can I ask a hard question...are they Christians? Sadly…sometimes (gulp) too often we can answer that with a Yes. =/

I pray that that is NOT the type of person and/or Christian we are. When God gives us a gift, a purpose, a job, I pray that we actively search for ways to be used. I pray that WE (the church) don’t just let them sit. I pray that we are not void of words that give life. I pray that people do not fear spending time with us because they will leave feeling worse than when they came!

Let’s speak only what we would say if we were standing at the Throne of Grace. Let’s imagine that Jesus plays an active part in each conversation that My Nature Pics 017 -b&w-2 we have. He does! Think about it. Really!! You know that check you feel in your spirit when you are about to say something that you shouldn’t? That is Jesus. You know that Scripture reference that pops into your head when you need it? Jesus. You know that sudden thought of compassion and prayer for a complete stranger? Jesus. You know that word of encouragement that you give or receive as ‘random’? Jesus! Those that I’ve listed are just some of the examples of our Father in Heaven being relevant, living and active.
How amazing it is to see God orchestrate each detail of our day. Look for Him in your today! No matter what day it is…or how long it has been since I wrote this post…tell me about how God was relevant in your day. I WANT TO HEAR FROM YOU! I want to be encouraged and excited with you. I want to rejoice. I want to sing praises for you. I want to thank God for how He showed Himself forever faithful. Leave me a comment in 3…2…1…

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