God and all things organic.

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Healthy is trendy these days.

You don’t have to look far to validate this.

Our instagrams and facebook pages are clogged with juices, essential oils, gluten-free, grain-free, dairy-free, organic blah, blah, blah. (Mine too)  

And for the most part I love it.  We try to eat clean, exercise, and make good health choices.  I clean with mostly homemade products.  Some smelling better than others.  My old roommates hated it when I cleaned with vinegar.  My roommate these days is much less fussy/opinionated about these matters. 🙂

But there is a part of this whole trend that I think we really have to guard our hearts toward.

Much of this field is motivated by fear… That’s potentially the best marketing approach ever.

I read this scripture this morning and it sunk deep into me, bringing comfort and squashing fears.

“Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature, having escaped the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.”  2 Peter 1:4 (NIV)

“For by these He has granted to us His precious and magnificent promises, so that by them you may become partakers of thedivine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world by lust.” 2 Peter 1:4 (NASB)

NASB version says lust rather than evil desires.  There is so much lust in our culture.  That lust leads industries to genetically modify products, regardless of how that affects society.  It also can lead “healthy” companies to lie about their products or market things to mothers of small children in a fear inducing you are a terrible mother if you don’t buy this product manipulative way.

I think we have to be discerning as people to make sure we are making our “health” decisions based on convictions rather than fears.

I love how this verse is basically saying we serve a God who is bigger than the evil and corrupt ways of this temporary world!

I am 100% for taking care of our earthly bodies, being in this for the long haul, and doing all that we Mahers can to release His kingdom on this earth.  We like everyone else want to make great life giving choices.

I just want to make sure that He and His kingdom are my 1st priority.  I want to make sure that I am more aware of His overcoming power than of the evils in this world.  I want my decisions to be rooted in faith rather than fear.

I pray that we will be clothed with His wisdom in the choice that we make.  I pray the His perfect love will cast out any fear.  I pray that we will be motivated by a healthy perspective of stewardship rather than fear as we make choices regarding health.  Above all, I pray that we will be so aware today of how good and big our God is!

 

 

 

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He’s got the itty bitty babies…

in His hands.

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Sometimes I forget.

He is BIG.  And I am small.

There’s something deeply therapeutic in holding a newborn.  I think part of that is that they are so fresh out of heaven and there is a deep peace that penetrates as the rhythms of their soft breaths sink their tiny bodies up and down.

I was thinking about tiny babies this morning in church, and how helpless they are, yet there is so much delight in caring for them.

And it reminds me of God.

Maybe everyone doesn’t need the reminder, but I often do.

He likes to take care of us.  He delights in us, even when we sleep.

His love is pure, based on who we are, and not just what we do or don’t do.

He’s not stressed by our needs, or even our wants and desire.  He finds joy when we recognize our need for Him.

It’s His good pleasure to take care of us, to give us what we need, and even what we want.

It’s good for the ever so responsible, strategic, achiever in me to be reminded of this.

As we grow, we learn what it means to co-labor with him.  We wake from the slumber of our infant days, and we take His hand and venture out into the grand world to be a part of something bigger.  This is good.  This is healthy.  This is growth.

Yet I never want to forget the simplicity of His love for me.

That just as people love to hold a newborn, He longs to hold us.  That even when we do nothing, He can do everything.  We find joy in the process of building with our Father, and we should.

I don’t want to forget that this is His kingdom we are building.

He is BIG, and I am small.

I find great comfort in that.

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1. He´s got the whole world in His hands,
He´s got the whole world in His hands,
He´s got the whole world in His hands.

2. He´s got the wind and the rain in His hands,
He´s got the wind and the rain in His hands,
He´s got the whole world in His hands.

3. He´s got the the tiny little baby in His hands,
He´s got the the tiny little baby in His hands,
He´s got the whole world in His hands.

4. He´s got you and me, brother, in His hands,
He´s got you and me, brother, in His hands,
He´s got the whole world in His hands.

5. He’s got ev’rybody here in His hands.
He’s got ev’rybody here in His hands.
He’s got the whole world in His hands.

1. He´s got the whole world in His hands,
He´s got the whole world in His hands,
He´s got the whole world in His hands.
He’s got the earth and sky in his hands;
He’s got the night and day in his hands;
He’s got the sun and moon in his hands;
He´s got the whole world in His hands.

2. He´s got the whole world in His hands,
He´s got the whole world in His hands,
He´s got the whole world in His hands.
He’s got the land and sea in his hands;
He’s got the wind and rain in his hands;
He’s got the spring and fall in his hands;
He´s got the whole world in His hands.

3. He´s got the whole world in His hands,

He´s got the whole world in His hands,

He´s got the whole world in His hands.
He’s got the young and old in his hands;
He’s got the rich and poor in his hands;
Yes, he’s got ev’ry one in his hands;
He´s got the whole world in His hands.

He´s got the whole world in His hands,
He´s got the whole world in His hands,
He´s got the whole world in His hands.

retirement

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I’ve been drawn to this verse the last few days.

“These are a shadow of the things that were to come; the reality, however, is found in Christ.”

Colossians 2:17

It’s surrounded by verses about human regulations.  Paul is revolutionizing the way they think, behave, and receive.  Because Christ “having canceled the charge of our legal indebtedness, which stood against us and condemned us; he has taken it away, nailing it to the cross”. (Col 2:14)

All of this was a foreign concept to a society governed by following rules, making sacrifices, and trying to measure up.

He is giving them {and us!} permission to retire from this way of thinking.  He is defining freedom in the person of Christ, rather than behavior.

“For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form, and in Christ you have been brought to fullness. He is the head over every power and authority.”  (Colossians 2:9-10)

One translation says you have been “given fullness in Christ”.  The new covenant is more about receiving what He’s already done for us than about following a set of rules.

These verses are a reality check for me.

Am I more concerned about rules, regulations, and behaviors, or am I aware that the fullness has already been given to me?

Is my attention more on my disciplines than what He already accomplished on the cross?

The real zinger is in verse 23-

“Such regulations indeed have an appearance of wisdom, with their self-imposed worship, their false humility and their harsh treatment of the body, but they lack any value in restraining sensual indulgence.”

As I retire from the old mindsets based on works and performance, my focus should be-

“Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God.  Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.” (Colossians 3:1-2)

He came to set us free and that we might have life and life abundantly.  Let’s not get entangled by human regulations.  May it be said of us that, whatever we do, whether in word or deed, has been done in the name of Christ. (Colossians 3:17)

Let’s retire these old mindsets, and walk into the promised land that the cross has already purchased.

 

laughing at the days to come…

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she smiles at the future… (nasb)

she laughs without fear of the future… (nlt)

she can laugh at the days to come… (niv)

she shall rejoice in time to come… (nkjv)

and she always faces tomorrow with a smile… (message)

Proverbs 31:25b

Don’t you want people to say this about you?!

It’s a new year, a new day, a new season.  God wants you to have an emotional reaction to your future{and that doesn’t have to be fear!}.  He is a good Father with good gifts, who withholds no good thing.  He takes us from glory to glory.

This is one of my favorite verses.  This is God’s heart for us.  He is a Father who longs to place identity in us that beams with strength and dignity.  He longs for us to embrace a hope {confident expectation that good is coming} that brings us to the point of joyous, loud, until your stomach hurts laughter when we look to the future.

I pray that today you are “clothed in strength and dignity”  and that you can smile, laugh, and rejoice in what tomorrow will bring.

Facing fears today about the future?

Give those fears to Him.  He loves you so much.

Trust in the Lord with all your heart
and lean not on your own understanding;
in all your ways submit to him,
and he will make your paths straight.

Proverbs 3:5-6

Give up your right to understand.  He is bigger.

Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us,  to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.

Ephesians 3:20-21

Now that we’ve let go of the fears of the unknown, we are free to embrace the mystery and the adventure that our Good Father in heaven has for us!

Go ahead… LAUGH, SMILE, REJOICE!

simply JESUS.

Choosing Jesus in a land where google is god.

More than any other time in history, we are surrounded by information.  We are just one click away from the next solution to our ever mounting problems.  Unfortunately the search for solutions often leads to more diagnosis’s.

I was talking with a friend one day who is a doctor.  He said he had every disease imaginable while in medical school.  He would read about a disease and immediately fight the thoughts of “I have that”.

And thus the downfall of information…

Last week while in the candlelight service on Christmas Eve, I made a decision.

My new years resolution- JESUS.

Pure and simple.

“For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.” (Isaiah 9:6)

He is sufficient.  He is the answer.

“Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.'” (John 14:6)

His mission is clear.

“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.” (John 10:10)

He calms the storms.

“Then He got up and rebuked the winds and the sea, and it became perfectly calm.” (Matthew 8:26)

He has authority over anything that comes my way.

“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” -Jesus (John 16:33)

simply JESUS.

welcome 2014!

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may you be a year of simplicity, breakthrough, joy, growth, extravagant peace, life to the fullest, desires fulfilled, trees of life, opportunities, solutions, and hope.