Showing posts from July, 2011

Why Blog?

I've learned a valueable lesson. If you're going to put your life "out there" you have to be willing to "take the heat." I've never been afraid to stand up and speak out.

There was the time when I was in 4th grade and a high schooler on the bus was picking on a kid and I let her know she needed to back off. Can you believe she tried to bully me too?! I was half her size but I wasn't scared. I had a big enough mouth to fend for myself. (I hear those chuckles...)

In 7th grade, still a rather small kid, I went head to head with a classmate who was at least a foot taller. I didn't like how much she cussed and felt the need to confront her. She felt the need to slam me up against the lockers. I did not regret following through on my conviction. (I would later call that "bully" friend in high school.)

I knew long ago if I was going to speak out and stand up, I would be put under the microscope. From everything about my changing hairstyles t…

The Heart of Holiness

"Be holy because I, the Lord your God, am holy." Leviticus 19:2

He beckons me. Holiness is my goal. But how am I, a victim of fallen flesh, to be like a perfect and holy God?
"The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?" Jeremiah 17:9

What I know is that if I don't let Him help Himself to my heart - the hidden parts and all - I may experience the terrible possibilities that lie within. I cannot achieve true holiness with this darkness lurking inside.

He calls me out: "Those things which proceed out of the mouth come from the heart.... For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts..." Matthew 15:18-19

If my heart reveals the "truth" about me, then I'd rather keep those things hidden away. Yet my Omniscient God can't allow it. He knows my thoughts, sees my comings and goings, and even reveals the darkest depths of my heart.

If holiness is synonymous with godliness, I must get to the heart of it all. …

Poor, Poor Pitiful Me

Hi. My name is Carrie and I'm a shopaholic. I admit my love for shopping - but I cannot deny I am a bargain hunter! I don't buy anything that isn't on sale and the clearance racks are usually my first target. I need to feel like I got a good deal. I don't see how much I spent - I consider how much I saved. I cannot pay full price for something, it just isn't in my DNA. I don't need the brand names, I just need a great bargain.

As much as I love to shop, I have recently learned it's all just "stuff." To have your house and most of your worldly possessions stripped away will quickly teach you not to put stock in the "things" of this world. To hear Christ say "Blessed are the poor in spirit..." (Matt. 5:3) is a comfort considering the intangibles I face. I possess a "poor me" attitude more often than I'd like to admit. But this is certainly not the "poor in spirit" He was talking about.

Today I find comfort i…

Lover of my Soul

"Yet I hold this against you: You have forsaken your first love." Revelation 2:4

It was a sermon about a month ago that I still can't shake. It rocked me to my core. Conviction. Had I lost my passion for Christ? Where was the burning desire for my Lord? Was I truly seeking Him first and only? 

Last week I wrote about an unfailing love. The kind of love that 1 Corinthians 13 admonishes us to have - the love that never fails. It seems humanly impossible because we're capable of failure in our fallen flesh. But in the perfection of Sovereign God, He proves His love never fails.

What I'm grappling with is the reality that in my fallen state, this perfect God would in fact love me. The unthinkable - to love the unlovable.

Who I am is Whose I am. Not because of what I've done, but because of what He's done. Not because of who I am, but because of Who He is.

And this perfect God wants to be in a relationship with me. ME, a sinner. A failure. He looks not at th…

Unfailing Love

"Let the words of my mouth and the meditations of my heart be acceptable in Your sight, Oh Lord."

It is a scripture I learned as a child but now it has become my prayer. Over and over praying for my words to be his words and the deepest thoughts and feelings in my heart be pleasing to Him.

Today I am meditating on His word, basking in the richness of His promises. Oh how I love His word! It is true His word satisfies the soul as with the richest of foods.

I admit that being on vacation I haven't dedicated my R&R time to bible study. So little did I expect Him to speak to me so clearly through His word. Psalm 143 is living and breathing in me today.

     1 Hear my prayer, O Lord;
      listen to my plea!
      Answer me because you are faithful and righteous.
2 Don’t put your servant on trial,
      for no one is innocent before you.
3 My enemy has chased me.
      He has knocked me to the ground
      and forces me to live in darkness like those in the grave.
4 I am lo…

Psalm 23

It may be one of the most familiar passages quoted, recited, put on plaques, hung on the walls and recognizable to even unbelievers.

The 23rd Psalm - a song about the Lord who is the great shepherd. A song about where and how He leads. A song about His protection and deliverance. A song about His comfort. A song that boasts of His promises and  supplication.

Even so, I have to pause for a moment to be reminded that among all of the promise and supplication and protection and deliverance...The Lord is...

Simply and complexly, the Lord is...
The Lord is my all-in-all.
The Lord is alpha and omega.
The Lord is my sufficiency.
The Lord is my light and my salvation.
The Lord is my life and my refuge
The Lord is everything I need beyond just supplying for my needs.
The Lord is my God, my rock and my fortress.
The Lord is Almighty, Sovereign and All-knowing.
The Lord is for me and no one can be against me.
The Lord is my deliverer and King.
The Lord is Creator, Elohim.
The Lord is Jehovah.

Justice for All

Life has trouble. Disappointment is inevitable. Heartache happens. People fail us. The reality of our mortal existence seems bleak, no doubt. Our fallen flesh craves the attention and the self-inflicted martyrdom we claim as victims. We want what we're owed. We demand equality and fairness and justice. Yes, justice. We seek what is rightfully ours.

But I'm also aware of my own ability to fail. My own flaws that cause pain. My ability to hurt and disappoint. Yes, people have hurt me. Yes, situations have happened to me. Yes, I've felt like the victim at times. But what about the disappointment and heartache I've caused my perfect and righteous Father? What about the justice He should be demanding? Oh how I praise Him for not treating us as we deserve! (Psalm 103:10)

Praise. Can I be in this state of hurt and confusion and still offer praise?

"Praise the Lord, O my soul; all my inmost being, praise His holy name." Psalm 103:1

I admit. Whether I'm feeling g…


The Psalms of Ascent...15 Psalms starting in chapter 120 that were sung on the Israelites' ascent to Mount Zion. The parallel is drawn for us today of the spiritual ascent we take in our walk with the Lord. Moving forward. Walking. Going. Growing.

It's movement upward. To me that's movement toward the Lord. It's movement toward a higher state. Not necessarily of fame or notoriety but a higher state of mind; a mind like Christ, if you will. Ascent toward His will being worked out in my life. Close enough with the heart of God that His desires become my desires. His ways become my ways. The unfathomable traits of Almighty God begin to take root in my own flawed characteristics that so often fall short.

What I also know is that the higher you climb, the further your fall can be. It's the natural law of gravity. (Don't worry - I didn't do so well in Physics so I'll spare you the science lesson.) Naturally, if you're at the top of the mountain, a quick s…