My Father’s Voice

There are times when life’s circumstances seem to jump out at me in a way that leaves me frightened, confused and all alone. I find myself struggling to make sense out of my life and the world I live in. All around me people are experiencing fear, doubt and confusion; nothing makes sense and life seems uncertain and all hope seems gone.

During life’s uncertainties, my default response, is fear. Now, with that said, I do not stay in fear–I just seem to go there first and then eventually I dig my way out. Does that sound at all familiar to you or is this struggle mine alone?

I’ve come to discover, when I’m living in fear, there is something I am believing that is not true. I’m reminded how critical it is to identify truth and discard any lies that I do believe. These are the very lies that leave me trembling in fear and confusion. Yet, there are times when these lies actually feel as if they are the truth, and the truth feels like the lie. I’m realizing that just because it feels true, that doesn’t make it true. To regain my balance and perspective, I must ask myself several questions: What lie am I believing? What is the truth? Where must I go to find the truth?

Today, I once again struggle with this whole issue of fear and find myself digging through God’s word–the Bible–looking for what He has to say. I’ve decided the voice within my head that makes me fear is not the voice I want to listen to and certainly not the voice I want to believe! As I dig into His word, I realize, I’m looking for my Father’s voice. I need to hear what He has to say, not the world’s version of the truth, but what does my Father say? He is the one I want to listen to, He is the one I want to believe, He is the one that will calm me and take away my fear as I lean in and listen to His voice.

His voice is the voice of truth and not lies; love not fear; hope not hopelessness; conviction not condemnation; grace, mercy and acceptance not judgment and performance; unconditional love not selfishness; life-giving not death-giving; encouragement not discouragement. These are the things spoken by my Father. When the world around me is falling apart before my very eyes, His voice is the one that brings back my balance and perspective and removes my fear and replaces it with His perfect love.

Yes, life’s circumstances are forever changing and uncertain. But, if we are listening to His voice, our fears begin to calm and we are reminded of His ever-present help in times of trouble and His constant and faithful love. Then we shall remember–He is the same today, yesterday and tomorrow. He holds us by our right hand, we do not need to be afraid. Our hope is in Him and Him alone–He is our help and our shield. In Him our hearts rejoice and His unfailing love surrounds us!

God bless you and keep you in His perfect peace and love!Bible w:Hand

Kiki

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever. Hebrews 13:8

So we can say with confidence, “The Lord is my helper, so I will have no fear. What can mere people do to me? Hebrews 13:6

For I hold you by your right hand — I, the Lord your God. And, I say to you, “Don’t be afraid. I am here to help you. Isaiah 41:13

We put our hope in the Lord. He is our help and our shield. In him our hearts rejoice, for we trust in his holy name. Let your unfailing love surround us, Lord, for our hope is in you alone. Psalm 33:20-22

Contrast of voices from Barbara Moon’s blog “Joyful Musings on Thoughts We Have”

“The Truth About Lies and Lies About the Truth” by David Takle

“Lies, Deception and Other Tangled Webs”

Contact: Kiki @ DancingWithGod@charter.net

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Simple Faith and Plain Truth

1-3 The first thing I want you to do is pray. Pray every way you know how, for everyone you know. Pray especially for rulers and their governments to rule well so we can be quietly about our business of living simply, in humble contemplation. This is the way our Savior God wants us to live.
4-7 He wants not only us but everyone saved, you know, everyone to get to know the truth we’ve learned: that there’s one God and only one, and one Priest-Mediator between God and us—Jesus, who offered himself in exchange for everyone held captive by sin, to set them all free. Eventually the news is going to get out. This and this only has been my appointed work: getting this news to those who have never heard of God, and explaining how it works by simple faith and plain truth.
8-10 Since prayer is at the bottom of all this, what I want mostly is for men to pray—not shaking angry fists at enemies but raising holy hands to God. And I want women to get in there with the men in humility before God, not primping before a mirror or chasing the latest fashions but doing something beautiful for God and becoming beautiful doing it. 1 Timothy 2:1-10

Contact: Kiki @ DancingWithGod@charter.net

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Shattered But Not Broken!

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. 

I know you remember that old nursery rhyme! Who doesn’t, right? The way I see it, Humpty, who happened to be an egg, was minding his own business, enjoying life, when he fell off a wall. Having fallen, he was shattered into tiny pieces. In fact, he was so shattered, he seemed to be beyond repair.

That old riddle often came to mind during the times I felt the most shattered, the most broken and wounded. There was a point in my life when I could not imagine that my shattered pieces could ever be put together again. I could not see how something so shattered could ever achieve wholeness. Just as in the nursery rhyme, my thoughts were–if all the king’s horses and all the king’s men couldn’t put the pieces together again, then who could? It appeared, that was the end of Humpty Dumpty. But, was it?

I would like to share with you the following excerpt, from The Life Model, Living From the Heart Jesus Gave You, by E. James Wilder, et al., Chapter 1, Pages 15-17, which outlines the journey or path towards wholeness, where our shattered pieces can be put back together again. The following speaks to what that journey might look like and how it can be achieved.

It has been said that God is not the great magician–He is the great physician. That saying addresses a question which people need to think about clearly. Whether fixes from God are always “quick.” People typically seek the quickest way out of pain, which is understandable. Pain, of course, demands immediate attention. A more mature approach, however, is to seek God’s redemption in the middle of the pain, asking Him to bring healing into our wounds–(which can be a much slower process). God does His work in us, pointing us toward wholeness, even while we are in pain. But it is not simply His work; it is our work too. It takes maturity and tenacity on our part to achieve wholeness, and that means persistently dealing with our pain.

There may be times when we are not in a place where we are free from pain, but we can still experience God’s amazing redemption. An often-quoted passage in II Corinthians 12 describes how the apostle Paul learned a key lesson. When he was struck with a tormenting problem which did not go away, even though he pleaded with the Lord three times, he got an answer he was not looking for: God works through weaknesses. What a profound discovery–he learned to delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, and in difficulties. The good news of the Gospel is that God wants to be with us in the middle of our struggles. That is precisely when He exercises His strength in us. Paul learned to let God be in charge, and to stop asking God to end his hardship. God’s strength flowed through Him because Paul stopped trying to be in control. He let God take over, and God was able to use him more effectively. Paul could delight in suffering because he found it was an opportunity for God’s strength to work through him.

Central to the Christian experience is an unchanging belief that God is at work in all things for the good of those who love Him (Romans 8:28), and that means all things. He is particularly at work when we are stuck in pain that seems to be endless and meaningless. The time-honored Christian approach to pain and wholeness involves our activity as well as God’s: His work in us is to bring redemption to all of the traumas that have broken us, and our work is to strive for maturity as we progress to wholeness.  The word “redemption” is sometimes difficult to understand, simply because it is used in so many contexts. Here is the way it is used in The Life Model: Redemption is God bringing good out of bad, leading us to wholeness, and the experience of God’s amazing power. Redemption means that out of our greatest pain, can come our most profound personal mission in life.

The biblical understanding of wholeness is succinctly described in the first chapter of James. We are instructed there to consider it pure joy whenever we are in the middle of suffering, because that will lead to wholeness. Suffering tests our faith and builds our endurance, so that we can be mature and complete–not divided, but whole. James cautions that we must ask God for wisdom during this stormy process. It takes total faith to believe that God will  bring us through the storm, or we will be unable to “receive anything” from God; without total faith in God we remain “double-minded”–divided (verse 8). Wholeness comes as we let Him lead us through the storms. We are to welcome suffering because it brings down the walls in our fragmented life so that we can become mature and complete (verse 4). It is God’s intent to bring redemption to the wounded and fragmented places in our lives so that our weaknesses can be transformed into strengths. That can happen when we honestly address our pain. Suffering can lead to wholeness if we embrace it. It will take endurance and time, but the benefits are well worth it.

I look back in time and so clearly see what was not obvious to me then. I see God’s hand–His heart–in every tiny part of my journey. Although, I discovered there are no quick fixes from the things in life that create pain, there is a path to wholeness. It is not achieved quickly–it takes both time and endurance.

Yes, life’s circumstances do have a way of leaving us feeling shattered into a million pieces, and, while it might feel true, reality is, we are not broken beyond repair–the shattered pieces can be put back together again.

Although, all the king’s horses and all the king’s men couldn’t put Humpty’s shattered pieces together again, as I’ve discovered, and you can too, there is someone who can.

I promise you the journey is worth it!humpty-dumpty

Kiki

61 The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me, because the Lord has anointed and qualified me (Jesus) to preach the Gospel of good tidings to the meek, the poor, and afflicted; He has sent me to bind up and heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the [physical and spiritual] captives and the opening of the prison and of the eyes to those who are bound. Isaiah 61:1

From there he went all over Galilee. He used synagogues for meeting places and taught people the truth of God. God’s kingdom was his theme–that beginning right now they were under God’s government, a good government! He also healed people of their diseases and of the bad effects of their bad lives. Word got around the entire Roman province of Syria. People brought anybody with an ailment, whether mental, emotional, or physical. Jesus healed them, one and all. More and more people came, the momentum gathering. Besides those from Galilee, crowds came from the “Ten Towns” across the lake, others up from Jerusalem and Judea, still others from across the Jordan. Matthew 4:23-25

28 And we know that God causes everything to work together[a] for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them. Romans 8:28

Related Posts:

Learning To Dance

Lies, Deception And Other Tangled Webs

Up Close And Personal

Contact: Kiki @ DancingWithGod@charter.net

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Trials To Joy

A new year brings with it a new beginning and a fresh start. That’s how it feels for me as I leave the old year behind and settle into the new. Somehow, it makes me stop and reflect on what was and what is to come. Personally, I’m excited about moving forward to see what the new year will bring.

As I settle in, I bring with me those experiences that I have learned from–the ones that stretched me in some fashion, shape or form. Somehow, these are the experiences that seem to catch my attention and teach me the most about myself and God.

Recently, I was reading through Romans when Romans 5:1-5 caught my attention. This is where the apostle Paul tells us we can continue to rejoice even when we’re experiencing problems or trials. Now, that’s not necessarily an easy thing to do. My first reaction at the sign of trouble is to immediately scream and default to fear! I always manage to find my balance, but, first I seem to enjoy hanging out in fear.

Eventually, I grab ahold of the truth, and as truth promises to do peace and freedom come. Yet, according to Paul, we can rejoice during these problems and trials. Slowly but surely, I am discovering that all things I go through on this earth will teach me and refine me in some way. Paul tells us our problems and trials help us develop endurance, endurance develops strength of character, and character strengthens our confident hope of salvation.

Paul clearly intends for us to understand, that through Christ, our problems and trials can make us better people and should not make us angry, bitter people. Realizing this we can actually find reasons to praise God and even experience joy in the midst of our most painful moments.

Thank goodness life is a balance of incredible joy mixed in with times of suffering. Both will build us up, build our faith, and if we are paying attention and watching, we will see God in all things. We will know His presence and experience His perfect peace, both of which ultimately lead to incredible joy.

As you continue moving forward into this new year my hope and prayer for you is that you will live out life expecting great things, experiencing great joy and knowing without a doubt how dearly God loves you.Girl Field of Yellow Flowers

May God richly bless you as He turns your trials to joy!

Kiki

Therefore, since we have been made right in God’s sight by faith, we have peace with God because of what Jesus Christ our Lord has done for us. Because of our faith, Christ has brought us into this place of undeserved privilege where we now stand, and we confidently and joyfully look forward to sharing God’s glory.  We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help us develop endurance. And endurance develops strength of character, and character strengthens our confident hope of salvation. And this hope will not lead to disappointment. For we know how dearly God loves us, because he has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with his love. Romans 5:1-5

Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life.  Philippians 4:6-7

Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. James 1:2

Rejoice in our confident hope. Be patient in trouble, and keep on praying. Romans 12:12

You will show me the way of life, granting me the joy of your presence and the pleasures of living with you forever. Psalms 16:11

You have endowed him with eternal blessings and given him the joy of your presence. Psalms 21:6

Contact: Kiki @ DancingWithGod@charter.net

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Dancing With God

dance19

Source Unknown

When I meditated on the word Guidance, I kept seeing “dance” at the end of the word. I remember reading that doing God’s will is a lot like dancing.

When two people try to lead, nothing feels right. The movement doesn’t flow with the music, and everything is quite uncomfortable and jerky.

When one person realizes that, and lets the other lead, both bodies begin to flow with the music.

One gives gentle cues, perhaps with a nudge to the back or by pressing lightly in one direction or another.

It’s as if two become one body, moving beautifully. The dance takes surrender, willingness, and attentiveness from one person and gentle guidance and skill from the other.

ballerina2dancers

My eyes drew back to the word Guidance. When I saw “G” I thought of God, followed by “u” and “i.” “God,” “u” and “i” “dance.” God, you and I dance.

As I lowered my head, I became willing to trust that I would get guidance about my life. Once again, I became willing to let God lead.542198762_tTK6b-M

My prayer for you today is that God’s blessings and mercies be upon you on this day and everyday.

May you abide in God as God abides in you.

Dance together with God, trusting God to lead and to guide you through each season of your life.

“You have turned my mourning into joyful dancing…”
 Psalm 30:11

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The above, “Learning To Dance,” came to me in an email from a friend. It captured my attention, and, perfectly put into words what I’ve felt all along! It reminds me of my own journey with God, and how similar it truly is to “learning to dance.” It has been a constant learning process–relearning–stumbling and falling–getting up–and starting all over again.

It’s the reason I titled my blog, “Dancing With God.”

The above post, “Dancing With God,” so beautifully expresses what our journey looks like as we willingly learn to trust, and surrender to the gentle and skillful guidance of God.

I share this with you and pray it speaks to your heart as it did mine!dance9

God bless and I hope you dance!

Kiki

Contact: Kiki @ DancingWithGod@charter.net

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Sozo Love

Sozo  Logo

Call me crazy, but I’m excited over my recent discovery of the Greek meaning for our English word save, saved or salvation–sozo. In the Greek sozo is rich with meaning and has completely changed the way I view Biblical references to what we refer to as being saved.

Sozo in the Greek has 3 distinct parts which mean salvation, healing and deliverance, to make well, to make whole and complete.

A form of the word salvation–sozo–appears over and over again in the Bible to describe the work of Jesus and what He came to earth to accomplish.

There is so much more going on here than initially meets the eye! 

We are made up of 3 parts: We are spirit, body and soul with the soul being the mind, will & emotions.

Sozo Chart

Sometimes our tendency is to think in terms of only one part of the whole–we focus on our salvation as how to avoid hell. Yet, the full meaning of the word, salvation, is so much richer and deeper than we can begin to image. It is true, Jesus came to save (sozo) us from eternal separation from God; therefore, we are reconciled (reunited, bringing back together again) to God to spend all eternity with Him–we are spiritually awakened saving us from spiritual death. Yet, something else marvelous is happening at the same time. Jesus’ redemptive work on the cross was meant to bring restoration (repairing, mending, rebuilding) to the whole person. He wants to heal and restore the whole of who He created us to be–not just in part, but in whole–that means wholeness and completeness of spirit, body and soul. This is good news indeed!

With that said, I am not implying that all healing of body and soul will take place on this earth. I’m simply saying, it is His desire that we are whole and complete in the here and now. I will say, I firmly believe our starting point is always with our spiritual condition where we move from being spiritually dead to God, to being spiritually alive to God, and we move from that point forward. We are spirit beings, and we need spiritual resolution between us and God before His healing and wholeness can take place in us as He intended.

I seriously doubt, I am the only battle worn person in the universe that has struggled with issues of the soul–my mind, will and emotions. I have battled pain memories and traumas that have held me in bondage keeping me from living out the life I was meant to live. Unresolved pain and/or trauma can control how we live out life, and how we do relationships. These pain memories can be constant triggers creating havoc and chaos in our life, and the life of those we love. Am I the only one, or are there others who know exactly what I am talking about?

I don’t know about you, but, I think it’s a game changer when we fully comprehend and realize how Jesus in His love and compassion for us–not only spiritually wants to give us life–He also desires for us to be completely whole in the here and now. Better yet, He provided a way for wholeness to become our new reality. We have not been left alone and helpless–He is present with us–He is Immanuel, God With Us!

Sounds good, sounds promising and sounds filled with hope, but how do we get to that place? Glad you asked–we will start talking about that in future post!

God bless you and may you know His “sozo” love!

Kiki

21 She will bear a Son, and you shall call His name Jesus [the Greek form of the Hebrew Joshua, which means Savior], for He will save His people from their sins [that is, prevent them from [a]failing and missing the true end and scope of life, which is God]. Matthew 1:21 Amplified Bible

Biblegateway.com – A word search of the words save, saved and salvation found 387 scripture references.

Contact: Kiki @ DancingWithGod@charter.net

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Forever Changed ~ Part II

Heart of Butterflies In my last post, I shared with you that in January 1996 my son, Alan, died. In the blink of an eye my life forever changed and it would never again be the same. No one has influenced my life in a way that promoted growth and change in me as much as my son. Today, August 16th, would be his 41st birthday and naturally my thoughts turn toward him. The following letter was written in memory and honor of Alan.

My Son,

I find myself thinking of you often. I miss your presence in my life and your big hugs. I miss your love and your laughter. I miss the sound of your voice as you would say, “I love you, Mom,” and I miss seeing your foot prints in the carpet. Oh, Alan, how I long to see your face!

In life you gave me much joy and in your death I have known great sorrow. In the first moments after you died I fully understood how utterly helpless and powerless I truly am. I had a gut-wrenching pain and sorrow like no other. In an instant my world stopped and I thought I would die.

Within hours of your death I find myself alone, I walk into my closet, I collapse on the floor, I curl up in a fetal position, and I scream, and I scream. I find myself screaming out to God, this God I have believed in and trusted my entire life. Yet, for the first time, I felt tested in ways unlike any I had known. Everything was spinning out of control and I felt shaken to my core.

I began to give God everything, I gave Him all of me and I gave Him all of you. I begged Him to do for me what I knew I could not do for myself. I had no idea how I was going to get up off the floor much less how I was going to live out the rest of life. How was I to live each second, minute, hour, days, weeks, months and years that were to follow?

At the time, I did not understand what I was asking God, or even what I was screaming about–I only knew I did not know how to survive and God had to do it for me. I began letting go of my need for control and trusted God and Him alone.

Son, because of you I am facing my fears. I am learning fear is the opposite of love–we live from fear or we live from love. I can now see others with love and not fear or judgment.

I have shed one false-self after the other removing my masks and false-faces. I no longer have walls around me locking God and others out. I now know incredible joy and I enjoy my relationships with others to the fullest.

I am learning how to receive what is truth and discard those things that are lies. I stay in the present and do not mentally and emotionally come and go when things get too hard to bear. I fully experience life where before I only survived.

In the years since you have been gone, I have discovered and learned to receive God’s incredible unconditional love, and I know my value and worth as someone chosen by Him. I am able to receive His grace and tender mercy, and enjoy intimate, authentic relationship with Him and others.

Because of you, son, I have allowed God to bring healing and restoration to my wounded and broken heart. He has filled my heart with praise, turned my ashes into beauty, and my mourning into joy.

           Alan, my son, to you I am eternally grateful for through you came my greatest gifts.

On our journey through life many will enter into our journey with us becoming apart of our story. Some will come and stay–some will come and go–and some will impact our lives in such a way we are forever changed.

God Bless!

Kiki

P.S. It is my heart’s desire that in sharing my story others will see whether it is spiritual, physical or emotional, at some place in time, we all need healing and restoration. My prayer is it will point all toward Jesus, the Healer and Restorer, of our spirit, body & soul. We do not live as those without hope. We have a hope and we have a future. Jeremiah 29:11Heart of Butterflies

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The Spirit of God, the Master, is on me because God anointed me.
He sent me to preach good news to the poor,
heal the heartbroken,
Announce freedom to all captives,
pardon all prisoners.
God sent me to announce the year of his grace—
a celebration of God’s destruction of our enemies—
and to comfort all who mourn,
To care for the needs of all who mourn in Zion,
give them bouquets of roses instead of ashes,
Messages of joy instead of news of doom,
a praising heart instead of a languid spirit.
Rename them “Oaks of Righteousness”
planted by God to display his glory. Isaiah 61 The Message

Contact: Kiki @ DancingWithGod@charter.net

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