Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Trial by Fire

In Sunday School this past week, we were talking about Daniel and Shadrach, Meschach and Abednego.

When we got to the furnace, there were a few interesting things.

When the 3 (Shadrach, Meschach and Abednego) were thrown into the furnace. They refused to bow down and worship the king as god. The punishment was death by fire... The king was SO angry that he had the furnace heated up to 7 times hotter than usual. When the guards opened the doors to throw them in, the heat from the fire killed them on the spot...

As the king looked in the fire, he saw 4 men walking around in the fire. FOUR! He turned to those around him and said "Did we not throw THREE men in the fire?" They all said "yes oh king... 3 it was..." And he said... "But I see FOUR!"

He ordered them to be brought out. ok so the furnace was 7 TIMES hotter than usual. It was blazing! It killed the guards to just get close to is...

But the 3... came out completely unscathed. The only thing burnt off... were the ropes that bound them. They didn't even smell like smoke...

Moral of the story?

When fiery trials come, or when persecution comes, if we are walking with Christ... then the only thing that will be destroyed or lost... will be the things that bind us. Only the things holding us captive will be burned up. We ourselves... we won't even come out smelling like the smoke...

Not to say that it won't be scary... or hard... or difficult... But we will come out of the fire victorious.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

And all of creation will praise the Lord...

A friend of mine sent me this video, and I just had to share...

We keep hearing all this stuff about the stars singing in space. The new telescopes etc. have started picking up their sound. There was one that was sending out a frequency that was a Bb 88 octaves below anything we have in a man-made instrument... electronic ones included...

This was the first time, however, that I got to hear what they sounded like... It just blows my mind... that our God is so awesome... and we only see/hear a tiny tiny part of what makes Him so awesome...

So I hope you enjoy listening to the stars sing His praise... and listening to yet another proof of how AMAZINGLY AWESOME is our God... :)


Sunday, October 16, 2011


So the past year or 2... or 3... I've been waking up with the name Joshua on my mind.

So at first... I was like... ok... well maybe I'm supposed to read Joshua. So I read it... didn't really get much out of it... so... Life went on... But the name wouldn't go away...

So I started thinking... ok God... maybe it's the name of a guy... like... husband? but... I don't know any Joshuas...

So I just keep waking up with it... and dwelling on it... but nothing has really come of it...

I've been teaching the little kid's Sunday School... and it was time to take a break... the pastor's wife took over for me and the morning that I walked into adult Sunday School for the first time in almost a year... we started a study on Joshua.

well huh...

One of the first things that we talked about was the fact that the promised land, is not symbolic of heaven. Heaven is a place of peace... when the Israelites crossed over into the land... it was to take the land by force. They were purging the land of all the pagan peoples.

My pastor died very suddenly 2 years ago. And when he did... There was a very real sense of God saying "ok Charity... it's time to depend on me... not on somebody else..." Because I did depend on Doug. I very much depended on him... for a little bit of everything...

We were a church plant. We are a new church. We'd only been in existence for a couple of years. He was the only pastor we'd had...

So when we started on Joshua... one of the guys in Sunday School said something like this:

"Moses is dead. The one who has led them out of bondage is dead. And it's time for Joshua, a new leader, with a new generation, to step up and enter into the promised land... to face the enemy."

And right now man... I'd been thinking about Doug for a week or so... and it just hit so hard.

Our church is in the middle of a transition. We are moving into a new building. With a new pastor. With a new identity.

It is not the time to sit and do nothing. We are crossing over the river Jordan. We are crossing over to the battlefield. Now is the time to step up, take leadership, and move forward in our walk with Christ.

This morning... it was pointed out that the Israelites never did take possession of their entire inheritance. In their entire history... they only possessed 10% of what they were supposed to. 10%!

So as we move into this new place. As we move into the battlefield... it's not a time to take 10%. It's time to step up and take the whole 100%. We can't grow lax. We can't grow apathetic.

And this isn't just for my church.

I heard a statistic the other day that said something like 1 in every 10 pastors quit within... I think the first 3 or 5 years of ministry? Or maybe it was within the first year? I can't remember... and then another one that blew me away... I forget how many hundreds of pastors quit EVERY DAY in the USA.

We are becoming a people of ease. When the going gets tough... we move out.

The battlefield is in front of us. We are supposed to be purging the land. We're supposed to be picking up the leadership and moving the Church forward into the mission... and instead... we're sitting on the other side of the river saying "but there's giants in the land!"

I feel like we've had our 40 years of wandering already. We've already been wandering around in circles just passing time...

It's time for a generation... or 4... or 5... or 12... to stand up and say "We WILL go in to take the land. We WILL go in to claim the inheritance. We WILL go in to clear out the pagan nations and idols."

So... in thinking about Joshua... Are you ready to cross over? Cause the time is coming near. Sooner than you think...

One of the things we talked about today was the cleansing of the people. Before they could cross over, God gave the command that the people should purify themselves before Him. Or consecrate themselves to Him.

Get rid of all the stuff in their lives or hearts that was holding them back from going in to be victorious. Clean out the old house and get ready to listen to God... and obey Him to the letter.

It is time to stand up and say "As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord." And stick by it. It's time to face the giants... the enemy... and it's time to win! God has prepared the way! He has opened up the path. He has given us all the tools we need. And He goes before us into the land...

Will you come with us? Will you follow the voice of God? Will you drop all that weighs you down and pick up your battle gear?

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Special Prayers

I've been reading through a Max Lucado book, "And the Angels Were Silent." There was this story (true or not, I don't know...) about a bishop who was taking a journey.

"One of my favorite stories concerns a bishop who was traveling by ship to visit a church across the ocean. While en route, the ship stopped at an island for a day. He went for a walk on a beach. He came upon three fishermen mending their nets.

Curious about their trade he asked them some questions. curious about his ecclesiastical robes, they asked him some questions. When they found out he was a Christian leader, they got excited. "We Christians!" they said, proudly pointing to one another.

The bishop was impressed but cautious. Did they know the Lord's Prayer? They had never heard of it.

"What do you say, then, when you pray?"

"We pray, 'We are three, you are three, have mercy on us.'"

The bishop was appalled at the primitive nature of the prayer. "That will not do." so he spent the day teaching them the Lord's Prayer. The fishermen were poor but willing learners. And before the bishop sailed away the next day, they could recited the prayer with no mistakes.

The bishop was proud.

On the return trip the bishop's ship drew near the island again. When the island came into view the bishop came to the deck and recalled with pleasure the men he had taught and resolved to go see them again. As he was thinking a light appeared on the horizon near the island. It seemed to be getting nearer. As the bishop gazed in wonder he realized the three fishermen were walking toward him on the water. Soon all the passengers and crew were on the deck to see the sight.

It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out prayer... it just takes taking time to have a conversation with God... So take some time today... :)

When they were within speaking distance, the fisherman cried out, "Bishop, we come hurry to meet you."

"What is it you want?" asked the stunned bishop.

"We are so sorry. We forget lovely prayer. We say, 'Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be your name...' and then we forget. Please tell us prayer again."

The bishop was humbled. "go back to your homes, my friends, and when you pray say, 'We are three, you are three, have mercy on us.'" "

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Can't Get Over You

I am falling in love with this song... I don't know what it is about it... I mean partly... they just sound GOOD... lol But there's just something there that won't let me go. I have literally listened to it on repeat since I downloaded it last night... (I like the acoustic version though... :)


I hope you enjoy as much as I do :)

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Letting Go

The past couple of weeks have been rough...

School started... and then my grad classes started... and it just made things busy... lol

But in the middle of all that... my pastor's been going through the book of Colossians. We've been working through for a while now...

So the last few weeks have been about letting go of things. Making God center and allowing Him to have control of your life.

And then we had a girl come speak who's getting ready to go on a mission trip, and at one point, she was talking about letting go of things... but sometimes having to pray, "ok God... I know I need to give this up... but You gotta pry my fingers apart... cause I just can't seem to let go of it."

As pastor's been talking, God keeps putting His finger on different aspects of my life. He keeps asking for more of me. And when Sarah came to speak... it kinda brought everything together as a "ok... I've prepared you... I've waited for you... it's time that you move and let Me take control of these things."

So leading up to this week, that was the goal. And I spent a coupla days in prayer, just for that.


So this week, we had a fiasco at the school... just huge issue came up again and I was in the middle... again... and I was frustrated with the situation and frustrated with how things were going, and by Wednesday... I was so tired and exhausted that I just wanted to give up. I just didn't care anymore... I was too tired to fight...

And so Thursday morning... everything was kind of culminating... and I was kinda freaking out... not gonna lie...

Normally, I plug my ipod into the car on my way to my second school... but for some reason, my radio was on... and I just left it on. (Gotta love KLOVE) Like 4 songs in a row were about letting God take over. The first was Steven Curtis Chapman... I can't remember all of it, but part anyway:

"I'm diving in, I'm going deep, in over my head I wanna be, the river's deep, the river's wide, the river's water is alive, so sink or swim I'm diving in."

And I cried all the way through it... Cause that had become my prayer. Ok God... help me take the dive. Cause I don't do well with insecurity. I like to be in control. I like to know what step I'm taking next. But it doesn't always work that way... ya know?

So that was the first one... and 3 successive songs after that were just as heavy on my heart.

It was pouring the rain... like so heavy I could barely see... and I'm sobbing and still trying to drive to get ot my second school... all the while just gradually letting God take the reigns...

By the time I got to school... I was kinda drained... and the situation escalated... and at one point, I was so mad I was shaking... and so I went and called my pastor so he could have the church pray over the situation... and you know what... by the time everything came together... God took care of business.

And not just in that situation... but in a couple others as well that were just kinda smaller worries.

So I was reading Psalms this week for the bible study... and I got to 139 and wow... that just hit so hard... cause yeah... God does see us. He knows our every need. He knows exactly what we need and exactly WHEN we need it. It might seem like the last possible second... but He knows exactly what He's doing.

So... my prayer for this week are those last 2 verses...

"Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. Point out anything in me that offends You, and lead me along the path of everlasting life."

Saturday, August 20, 2011

You Can Have Me

This is a song by Sidewalk Prophets. It's had me for a coupla days now... so thought I'd share... lyrics and video below...


If I saw You on the street, and You said come and follow me
But I had to give up everything, all I once held dear, and all of my dreams

Would I love You enough to let go? Or would my love run dry, when You asked for my life

When did love become unmoving? When did love become, unconsuming?
Forgetting what the world has told me,
Father of Love, You can have me
You can have me

If You're all You claim to be, then I'm not losing anything
So I will crawl upon my knees, just to know the joy of suffering

I will love You enough to let go. Lord, I give You my life, I give You my life

When did love become unmoving? When did love become, unconsuming?
Forgetting what the world has told me,
Father of Love, You can have me
You can have me

I wanna be where You are.
I running into Your arms
And I will never look back
So Jesus here is my heart

When did love become unmoving? When did love become, unconsuming?
Forgetting what the world has told me,
Father of Love, You can have me
You can have me

My Father, my love, You can have me.