Monday, June 29, 2009

Reality Check

I was browsing the Internet when I came across a blog of a friend of mine. We don't talk anymore due to past mistakes and hurts but I have not denounced him as a friend for many reasons. Part of the reason we haven't spoken had to do with a major disagreement we had that could have very well destroyed my marriage with Ricky. But back to his blog. I noticed a comment he posted about me that really opened my eyes to the way I had been acting before we stopped talking. He did not mention my name but I know it was about me because it mentioned contents from a conversation we had regarding our beliefs. I had lashed out in anger calling him a "liberal" and accused him of being heartless because we did not agree on certain views. I also said that the word "conservative" is not in his vocabulary. He had lashed out at me because of the things I have said. I realized just how bad my behavior was because I was casting stones. I had no business doing so because I am a sinner. I don't need to be acting self righteous and rude. That attitude kills any chance of witnessing the gospel. I have realized that my behavior of being nasty and rude really casted me in a terrible shadow. I could have very well have ruined my chance to share the Good News. He proclaims to know the Lord but I don't know if he has accepted Jesus. I have no idea. If he hadn't I ruined my chance to explain what that relationship is. It was because I was too busy being a hypocrite and being judgemental. I still have my views but through Gods grace I will learn to share His love without being cruel. I hope I will be able to speak to this friend again soon. I would like to apologize for my behavior but even more I would like to share the Good News. Maybe he already knows it and we can rejoice as brother and sister in Christ. I hope my friend will find this and know he has brothers and sisters in Christ ready to pick him up when he falls.

Heavenly Father, I ask for Your forgiveness with my judgemental attitude. I pray that my friend and others will know the Good News. I ask this in Jesus Name, Amen.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Sad news

Today Michael Jackson and Farrah Faucet passed away. As humans we feel that tug of sadness when we hear about someone who died. It does not matter if they are related or if they are someone in passing. I am grieving for these 2 because I don't know if they knew the Lord. I am at bothered by this because regardless of what anyone did or said or did not do I would not wish them eternal separation from our Lord. Some people have said that Michael Jackson deserved what he got because of his lifestyle. When it was announced that he passed away all I could think of was that I hope he knew Christ. I worry about someone who has denounced Gods grace. I am tormented by where they may end up. When the comedian George Carlin passed away my husband turned to me and said "We know where he is going". If you know anything about George Carlin you knew he was very vulgar and a proud atheist. He had no problem telling anyone that there was no God. So when he passed away I felt so sad knowing that he very well may be eternally separated. Unless he came to a saving knowledge of Christ right before he died then its inevitable where he is now. Christians today have done too much tongue clucking and pointing fingers instead of going out there and spreading the word. If there was one thing that motivated you it should be knowing that 3 cultural icons may have had it all but did not except the greatest gift of all. Material gain, status, and money is nothing when you do not have Christ. I pray for the Faucet and Jackson families today. I know its hard right now. Imagine if someone could have knowledge of knowing that someone you love will be in the arms of Jesus. Not knowing is torment and I pray we as Christians become better at presenting the Gospel. Its available to everyone regardless. I feel as Christians we have failed in being a witness to the lost. I pray that Farrah Faucett, George Carlin, Michael Jackson and any others that may have passed on knew Christ. Its a sobering thought to know where a person could end up by denying the Gospel.

Heavenly Father I pray for the families of Farrah Faucett and Michael Jackson as they are grieving during this time. I ask for Your assistance in us being better agents of Your word. I pray for anyone who does not know Christ and will hope that they come to a saving knowledge. I ask this humbly in the Name of Jesus.


Sunday, June 21, 2009

Celebrity and Priority

Have you ever thought of celebrities and why they are famous? What do they do to have them get the recognition they deserve? Are they talented singers? Do they act well? Or do they just have a ridiculous show exploiting their families? I have noticed people buying up the People, US Weekly, and In Touch magazines so they can gobble up the tidbits of information that seems fascinating. Some people actually seem to care that Britney Spears drove a Mercedes. Others are tsking over Lindsey Lohan's rehab stint. Jon and Kate's Goesslins marriage is falling apart on national TV. What do people find so wonderful or captivating about those tidbits? Its sad to see why people admire celebrities. It really is sad to see people idolize Madonna or Paris Hilton. I have no desire to meet any of these people. They have no impact on my life.

If someone were to ask me which "celebrity" I would want to meet the answer would surprise them. Its a question that will take some explanation. But lets list the mainstream answer first. Now for music I would love to meet Stephen Curtis Chapman or Mercy Me. They are great men of God and awesome musicians. Also I would like to meet Steve Perry from Journey. I always loved his voice and wondered what kind of person he would be. Carrie Underwood, Brad Paisley, and Alan Jackson are on the list as well. But that is as mainstream as I can get. These are people that are well known and admired for their talents. It would be nice to meet them. However its not a life long goal. With the possible exception of Mercy Me I would not be totally psyched if these people mentioned were to come to town. I would try to get tickets but would not feel let down if it did not happen

I would really want to meet Dr. Albert Mohler, Dr. Hershael York, Dr. Russell Moore, Dr. Richard Land, and Dr. Os Hawkins. Who are these people? Why would a young woman want to meet a bunch of men with Dr. titles? These are men of God I have come to respect greatly. These are well known men in the Southern Baptist Convention. Remember a previous post where I said that Southern Baptist and me did not mix in the past? Well things change and I think for the better. These men have preached Gods word lovingly but boldly. They get the bad rep because they don't compromise what they believe in. They aren't photographed in a magazine or flashed on the tabloid channel. However these are the people I want to meet due to the message they bring in their words and actions.

I was browsing the Internet one day and decided to look at the chapel schedule for Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. Since I work Sundays I would go to chapel services at the seminary during the school year. I was curious about the upcoming fall schedule and decided to see if it was posted. When I looked on it my first reaction was excitement. I am embarrassed to say that it was almost the equivalent of a young girl going to a Hannah Montana concert. No I did not scream but I did clap in delight and I was excited to share the news. The list had some of my heroes of the Christian faith on it! Dr Mohler, Dr Land, and Dr Hawkins will be preaching at SWBTS this coming semester. I am very excited because for me it would be an honor just to shake the hands of soldiers for Christ. I was reminiscing with my husband at how old I must be getting if I am getting excited about going to a chapel service instead of wanting to get tickets for the next concert in town. Ricky mentioned that I was not getting old but my priorities are different. It is quite a change to be anticipating a chapel service. I have not started marking the days with an X but i have been happy to know that these men will be here before we know it! I cant wait to tell Dr. Mohler just how much I appreciate his stance. I am looking forward to shaking hands with Dr. Hawkins and sharing a few thoughts with Dr. Land. I cannot wait and I know that I will be blessed by these upcoming events.

One thing you always have to do is be careful regarding anyone who is a celebrity. If you start to idolize them and lose focus of who really is in charge then you will set yourself up for disappointment. This always happens for any person in the limelight. People are willing to defend Britney Spears breakdown or excuse her behavior just because of her status. Its the same with Lindsey Lohan or Amy Winehouse. No one wants to realize that these people are not gods and we should not elevate them above God. This same rule goes for my heroes I have mentioned. Dr. Land was on Live from Criswell discussing a controversial viewpoint. He disagreed with the host Dr. Barry Creamer on that show and for whatever reason I was disappointed in him for not seeing Dr. Creamers view point. However I realized I was dangerously elevating him above God so I set myself up for that. This can happen with anyone regardless of whether they are well known or famous in your eyes only.

I have had the privilege of speaking with Dr. Mohler via phone on his radio program. He was always very polite and kind. I have also corresponded with Dr. York via twitter and Facebook. Dr. York is a very busy man but he took the time to respond to me! That's humbling when someone who could be doing many other things decides he will answer me or listen to what I have to say.

So would I call my heroes celebrities? Possibly because is a lot to "celebrate". However I don't have pictures of them on my walls or glossy magazines with trivial information. I have something better. I have the assurance of Gods Love. That's better than any movie star or celebrity. Dr. Mohler, Dr. Land, Dr. Hawkins, Dr. York, and Dr. Moore will be the first to say so. They are the representative of the One who needs to be celebrated the most. That is our Lord and Savior.

An update

So its been a long while since I have posted something. So be prepared for a jumble of thoughts.

Meri has moved out of my place. It was bittersweet because I was hoping she would get a job and try to get ahead. I felt that the DFW area offered for opportunities instead of Sulphur Springs. However she felt that she needed to be there for her mom. The good news is that she has a job and is working on going back to school. As long as she keeps those goals in mind then it won't matter where she is if she stays focused. This is true for anyone who wants to succeed. Of course there are times that the place you are in does not allow for such opportunities but instead of letting that be an excuse to be limbo, take baby steps to move on. Meri is doing that by working and obtaining her ID. She will be taking classes within the next year.

Ricky and I are doing somewhat better with our finances. Part of it is that I have been working 20-30 hours of overtime each paycheck due to 3 people on my team being out. I have been able to pay the rent on time the past 3 months so that has been a blessing. Ricky will be searching for a job once he gets back from Kentucky where he has been visiting his family for the last month. I am learning to be patient with him but not tolerant of laziness. If I approach my concerns in a loving but firm way we are more likely to get somewhere. He said he wanted to look for employment once he comes back because he knew how hard I have been working.

I had been under so much stress the past few months due to the limited income and job issues. Regardless I have gotten through them just fine without any major damage to goods. :) Working those OT hours was almost not worth it because I wanted time off and I could not get it. There were days I was on the verge of breaking down, days I wanted to cry. There were times at work where I would just stare at my computer for an hour because I had no idea what to do. The Lord was able to carry me through this.

I had events that made me think of family. I had to take care of my mother-in-law when she had surgery because her family decided to ditch her. All of Claudia's sisters were whining and complaining abut how it was an inconvenience to help her out. Also every time she needed something the sisters would always do that "Cant Candice Do it?" whine. It makes me sad that family see each other as burdens or just do not like each other. I have a similar situation. My older sister Rhonda for whatever reason does not like me. I hear about the attempts she makes to smear my name to my younger sister Alicia. The problem with her attempts is that they are thwarted every time by Alicia. She tells Rhonda she is not interested. I have no idea why Rhonda carries this burden. I pray for her every day and hope she and her family come to a saving knowledge in our Lord.

Work is just another stressful time. As mentioned before I had to work overtime due to some people being out. But I am really starting to resent my job in the worst way. Getting the Lords Day off to worship is too much to ask I guess. I have tried anything and everything and all of my attempts are being blocked. There is a rule for trades. I can take time off but then I need a reliable back up but normally those are not available. I also have a coworker who asks me to cover for him when he needs time off but he has not returned the favor at all. I feel like I could use some help. It pains me to be in a pew at worship on those rare Sundays. I never know when I will be back. I am also missing out on joining the choir. I don't want to complain because I know the job is good for providing during a tough economy. However I question myself if its worth it. My spiritual life is not getting fed. I read my Bible and listen to sermon archives but its not the same as being in communion with fellow believers and getting to share Christs love with others. You cant get that from listening to a sermon on the computer. Right now I am working on my resume and ways to polish it up so I can find the position God intends for me. I do not plan on being where I am for a long time.

I got to go to a family reunion over the weekend. That was fun being able to meet parts of the family I did not know I had. My second cousin who lives in San Diego invited Ricky and I down to his place. I hope we can do it. It was a great time to be able to see where I came from and what my roots were. I pray that another family reunion can happen again while some of our relatives are still with us.

This is just a snap shot of whats been going on. I plan to start writing regularly again. I have so much to share! The Lord has blessed me even during these tough times.

Heavenly Father Thank you for Your many blessings and love during a hard time. In Christ Name, AMEN.