Saturday, 24 January 2015


I feel like I'm missing something, like there is an empty hole in my life, in my heart. 

These are the first words that came to page as I journaled this morning. The thing is I'm not particularly sad this morning or anything, in fact I feel pretty good! So what's up, why such sad words?

Is this feeling sometimes maybe "normal" because we are living in-between times, you know the Kingdom here but not yet completely/fully?

Can I expect to be fully/completely satisfied on this side of eternity?

Some of you I am sure are going to give a big YES! I can hear you all the way from here! But before you discard my questions, hear me out?

Maybe because we live in-between times, we will not be fully/completely satisfied because there still is brokenness in the world (Rom 8: 18-25)?

And maybe we need to learn to trust, to have hope in God, that one day he will set all things right, but in the mean time we have to learn to live with the not-rights in away that is reflective of the sure hope we have in him (Rom 5:5)?

So then maybe I can give up this desperate grab for something/anything to satisfy me, to fill and complete me? And maybe I can stop and take a deep breath and trust that God is enough for me, and even in the pain, disappointment and dissatisfaction he is at work, and one day he will set all things right (Rev 21)?

I might just need to be OK with the not-OKs, as I wait on the Lord in anticipation and with a hope that will not disappoint.

There might always be some empty spaces in my life and heart, at least for as long as we are in-between times? But God is still good and he is working all things for our good (Rom 8:28).

So rather than focusing on the empty, some of what may not be filled on this side of eternity, I am going to choose to focus on the full, the spaces in my life that God has filled and I am going to participate with him in these full spaces and watch as he continues to fill them up to overflowing (2 Cor 9:7-9)!

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you,  who by God's power are being guarded through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials so that the tested genuineness of your faith—more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire—may be found to result in praise and glory and honour at the revelation of Jesus Christ. (1 Pet 1:3-7)


Monday, 19 January 2015


This blog should be a quick one, I had a bit of a re-revelation this weekend and I thought maybe it would be helpful to share it will ya'll.

During an extended time of worship, as we sang songs about giving our all to Jesus, and him being all we needed, it dawned on me that I had taken my eyes of the "prize"...

Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one receives the prize? So run that you may obtain it. Every athlete exercises self-control in all things. They do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable. (1 Cor 9:24-25)

I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. (Phi 3:14)

I believe the prize is a life of abundance, life overflowing in Jesus! 

The Lord gently pressed upon my heart that over the past couple years, I had slowly gone off course. In particular I have fixed my eyes upon the prize or goal of a relationship and a family. And although marriage and a family may be part of the abundant life God has planned for me, by fixing my eyes on them instead of Jesus, I have been living a life less than abundant. 

Even though I have had this realization, I still want to get married and have a family, I really cannot will or mentally convince myself into anything, I need Jesus by the power of his Spirit to transform my mind and heart. 

Jesus, I am asking for a re-vision of my heart, soul, and mind, I need you to re-focus me, please. Amen

I believe he will, help my unbelief, but it will take time, and some effort on my part, I need to be patient and diligent. Through continued prayer, praise and community I believe Jesus by the power of his Spirit can and will transform us! Amen!?

Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith... (Heb 12:1-3)

Have you lost focus? Do you need Jesus in any way, big or small, to re-vision your heart, soul, and mind?

Thursday, 15 January 2015

No Longer A Wretch

This morning I was inspired by a Humans of New York post on Facebook of a man who when asked "what's your greatest struggle right now?” answered "being honest with myself about deep, existential stuff…” 

I asked the Lord to “search me, O God, and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts! And see if there be any grievous way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting” (Psalm 139:23-24 ESV)

Then I just let the words spill out onto the page, without censoring them or trying to understand them. They started off pretty dark:

I don’t trust you… 
I’m afraid of being single forever, I’m angry at myself for being to loud, to aggressive, to fat… 
I don’t want to be a pastor because I don’t want to be accountable, I want to do whatever it is that I want to do, when I want to do it… 
I like to be drunk because it gives me the feeling of hope…

Then something was checked in my spirit, although the above are true feelings, even if they are rooted in lies, I also have other true feelings, that are rooted in God’s truth:

I love you, despite my fears, doubts, and anger, I love you I really do! This is truth, my truth in Christ Jesus my Saviour, this is grace and mercy…

This is truly a marvel, it makes no logical sense, how is it that I have so much darkness in me yet at the same time I have the hope of Christ shinning bright?

The only answer I have is that by God’s marvellous grace and mercy, He has given me His Spirit by whom I cry, “Abba! Father!” The Spirit himself bears witness with my spirit that I am a child of God! (Romans 8: 15-16) 

Oh what a marvel! A miracle! I a wretch have been saved, I am being saved, I have been made, I am, a child of the living God! 

Oh wonders upon wonders! Praise be to the Lamb of God, who was slain, Jesus Christ my Lord and Saviour, the Lover of my (far to often wretched) soul. He has made me worthy, I am no longer a wretch, I am a daughter of the King! Amen!

If this is true for me, it also true for you. Ask the Lord to search you, and to lead you in the way everlasting…

Tuesday, 13 January 2015

All, Not Just An Average.

Here we go again… 

Oh gosh that sounds awfully ominous, that’s unintended, it’s just the phrase that came to mind, so I wrote it, because that’s kinda what I do, I think a thought and I write it, praying that by God’s grace it will be some kind of blessing to someone out there. That being said I doubt that “here we go again” will be of any particular blessing to anyone, but maybe it echoes some of what you might be feeling or have felt? Whether it is the start of a new term at school or the start of the day, have ever just sorta let out a sigh of “here we go again?” 

That’s how I was feeling this morning. I got up earlier than I would have liked, and after making my coffee, as I sat down to be with the Lord, I didn’t really have anything to say or to even think about, I didn’t really have the energy to read anything, I just sorta was like “ooookkk I’m up, so now what?” The song that was playing keep repeating “you are holy God, holy holy holy, you are worthy God, worthy worthy, worth.” So since i didn’t really know what to do with myself or even what not to do, I started to write:

holy holy holy 
worthy worthy worthy 
Worthy, because you are holy, you are worthy because you alone are the living God.
Therefore not myself or a man or a job or a dream or anything else are worthy of all my attention, focus, energy, time and resources. You alone God are worthy of all.

Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength.

ALL not an average, not most of it, not just with your “spirit” but ALL our time, all of ourselves, mind, body and soul!

The thing that struck me this morning is that this is so important not just because it is a command but because He alone is worthy of ALL and to do any less is to be wasting our time, our lives on less than the best, less then the full and abundant.

But how?

I have heard sermons on this, read some chapters in books, and maybe you have too. And often they boil it down to the intention behind what we do. I would agree with this, but I think the point that God is reminding me of today is that we need to be constantly examining our intentions and alining our ways with His, through prayer, reading and studying the Word, fellowship, praise… because as still not yet perfected humans we are prone to wander, to go off track, and we need the spiritual disciplines to keep us focused on He who is the Way, the Truth and the Life. Amen!?

Saturday, 10 January 2015

The Lie

God is for us.

Do you believe it?

The Maker of the universe is on your side.

Then whom shall we fear?

If this is really true, if the All Knowing, All Powerful, All Loving Father is for us, on our side, working things for our good, then what or who could we possibly be worried about?

Nothing and no one, if this is all really true then we have nothing and no one to fear or to worry about. (Rom 8:31)

The problem I keep having is that I don’t really truly in my heart of hearts believe that God is for me, that He has my best interest in mind (Rom 8:28). 

As I have said before there is a part of me, a part that is deep and dark, that believes the lie that I can’t really trust God, that He is holding something back from me. 

I have believed the lie that Adam and Eve believed in the Garden (Gen 3). That God is not good and that He is withholding something from me, that there is something good that God doesn’t want me to have, and that to get it I have to take it myself. 

This is an insidious lie, that left unchecked, spreads and infects the rest of my thinking, it damages my mind and heart, making it difficult, if not impossible, for me to trust God, making it difficult for me to receive His life giving love, making it difficult for me to live an abundant life in Him, and making it difficult for me to be His life giving ambassador. 

Do you see how serious this is!?

That’s the thing about lies, they are like cancer, and we need to take them seriously like cancer. We can’t just shrug our shoulders and go on living our lives as the lies spreads throughout our whole lives, killing us and hurting others. 

I’ve already written on lies. But as I’ve said before about other topics, I think we all can probably use the reminder. 

That’s the thing about being a broken human on our way to wholeness we need constant reminders of the truth. I mean constant, day by day, hour by hour, and minute by minute! This is why God in His grace has given us His Holy Spirit to dwell in us as a guide, teacher, and councillor (John 14:15-31). Never take this for granted, you are not alone, you have been given the Holy Spirit who is at work in you to give you the power and desire to do what pleases the Father (Phil 2:13). 

And not only the Holy Spirit but God has also given us each other! We where never meant to walk this journey alone, He has been from the very beginning (back to the time of Abraham) been calling to Himself a people (Gen 12). We are designed to live and be in community, as iron sharpens iron, we cannot be sanctified alone, we need each other in fellowship and discipleship (Heb 10:24-25). 

As I struggle with my fears and doubts, the Spirit reminded me that I’m not in this alone.

Father God, I’m having, always have had, a hard time accepting you know best and that you have my best interest in heart… Jesus, I want what I want and I have a really hard time not going after it, and instead trusting you…

My desires are strangling the life out of me. Not that they are in themselves bad but because instead of focusing on you Jesus, I have fixed my eyes on my wants and desires. I need to lay down, give up my desires, I need to place them into your hands, and instead of trying to control my life, I need to focus on knowing you and being known by you, letting everything else fall into its place (Matt 6:33). Jesus I have made you just another thing to do, I have placed you on my to do list, I’m not even sure you are at the top of my list, please forgive me. 

I’m not entirely sure what it looks like to have you not just be a part of my life, but for you to be my very life. But Jesus I believe, or at least a part of me, that you are the Way, the Truth, and the Life (John 14:6) and that you are showing me how to be truly human, you are guiding me out of the ways of death and into the ways of life! Help me Jesus to set aside anything and everything that hinders me, pick up my cross and follow you…

I believe please help my unbelief (Mark 9:24)

Tuesday, 6 January 2015

An Unexpected Message

I woke this morning anxious and with only a handful of hours of sleep... As I sat with the Lord I journaled my feelings of anxiety, sadness, hurt, rejection. anger, frustration, and shame.
I asked Jesus to come into my feeling with his Truth, I asked that by the power of His Holy Spirit that I would be able to give up, give over, surrender all of my heart and mind ...

But Jesus I'm scared, scared that you are going to leave me alone, I'm scared to give up control because I'm scared that you are going to hurt me, that your plan for my life isn't actually good...

I'm angry that this is how I feel, I'm shameful that I don't trust you Jesus, I'm sorry that I screw up over and over again, I'm sorry that I choose my own selfish destructive ways over your life giving ones, even though I "know" better!

In the chaos of my feelings these words from the song playing caught my attention...

"I'm restless until I rest in you..."

OK so how do I rest in you!?

"Still my heart (yes please Lord) hold me close (yes please Jesus) let me hear your still quiet voice (oh Father God please)"

As I sat here letting that prayer wash over, the Lord pressed upon me that the primary tactic of the enemy in my life at the moment (and possibly yours too) is to keep me busy busy busy, so that I'm distracted from hearing, seeing, and receiving the Truth of God's love which has the power to transform my life, if only I could receive it! 

The Lord pressed upon me that this is a life or death battle for my heart and mind, that being busy and distracted is a big deal! It's not just the way things are, but that I need to understand that by being busy busy busy I'm not receiving his life giving love, I'm not living the full and abundant life that Jesus came, died, and rose from the grave to give us. When I don't take this seriously I'm letting the enemy come and rob, steal, and destroy my life! 

This isn't OK! I'm not OK with this! Are you!? For real! I encourage you to ask the Lord to reveal to you how the enemy is at work in your life. Because this is war! 

But have hope and be filled with courage for He has already won the war and He has made you and I more than conquers! Praise be to the King of kings the Lord Jesus Christ for He is truly mighty to save! Amen!

Friday, 2 January 2015

How About Instead?

Do you ever loss sight of who you are? Do you forget where your value and worth comes from?

During this time of year a lot of us are making New Years Resolution, thinking of ways to self-improve, to better ourselves, to make ourselves more worthy and of greater value. OK maybe it’s not quite all that cynical… buuut maybe underneath all the good intentions there lies a heart of pride and legalism?

I’ve already written a blog on New Years resolutions, I make them, I love self-help books… I’ll loss weight and think look at me! I’m in control of my own body, then I’ll gain all the weight back, and some, and I’ll think I’m crap! This is kind of how it goes, a continual loop of high peaks and low valleys of self-confidence, up and down, backwards and forwards, over and over again… 

I’ve also already written on self-confidence verses God-confidence, and our desperate need to have God-confidence (finding our confidence in Him rather then ourselves). This blog is not about New Years resolutions nor self-confidence, well at least not mainly…

OK then get to the point! 

This morning as I was journaling to the Lord, I was reflecting on how it hurts when someone has gotten to know me, yet they still don’t seem to find me worthy of friendship, this is one of my greatest hurts, someone not seeing me as worthy. 

Before I had time to wallow in self-pity the Lord asked me “Maria where is your value found?”

This is a question He has asked me many times before, so His Truth quickly flooded my heart…

“My value comes from the fact that I am loved by the Living God, the Creator of heaven and earth, the same God as Abraham, Isaac and Jacob…”

Even as I tried to let His truth wash over me, I couldn't shake the feelings of rejection, feelings of being just plain crap!  

I asked my Father, “Why can’t I seem to shake this?” 

“Because Maria you are desperate. Desperate to be loved, to be liked, to be wanted. You are hungry for attention, for affection…”

OK I know this already, I’ve also written numerous blogs on the topic…

So what!? What do I do with this? Where do I go from here?

Then he whispered “I am your Healer.”

That’s it, that’s where we go from here. To Him!

I’ve quoted this before and I’ll say it again (because I need to hear it over and over) 

“Let’s us fix our eyes upon Jesus the Author and Perfector of our faith” (Heb. 12:2)

Put down the self-help book, go ahead make those New Years resolutions but just don’t put to much faith in them, don’t bother trying to find you worth or value in yourself because you will fail yourself over and over again…

INSTEAD turn to Him who loves you, who created you, who knows you better then you know yourself, and let Him heal you, let Him just hold you, let His truth wash over you, renewing and transforming you. 

Take your eyes off yourself, stop dwelling on the lies!

INSTEAD open the Word of God and read it, mediate on it, pray it, lift your voice up to Him in praises and thanksgiving, being reminded of who He is, and therefore who we are in Him!

Father God, this is my prayer for 2015, may you heal us of the many lies of who we are that we are believing, please by the power of your Spirit, renew our minds and hearts, transforming us so that we can walk with your Spirit, living the full and abundant life that Jesus came to give us! Amen!