Saturday, March 29, 2008

The Unseen

This last week has been spring break, (you would never know it, with evidence of the weather, we have had something for everyone, sun, rain, sleet - SNOW for crying out loud!). A couple of days ago, we as a family took in a matinee. Not really knowing about the movie we were about to view, I sat with anticipation with the buttery popcorn and my smuggled in juice pack (don't tell anyone).

As the movie began, I was immediately taken in with the story line. And for the next 2 hours I was oblivious to any goings on around me. There were some parts of the story that I would use to NOT recommend the movie to others. So, in telling this experience of mine is in no way an 'endorsement' to the movie. There are cautions to be heeded.

I am challenged to 'see' as God would have me 'see'. And at times, seeing in the spiritual realm can be overwhelming. I love to find teaching ideas and practical parallels, this movie was FULL of them! The story of course takes place in a remote country side, away from much of the outside world. The family, a mom and 3 children embark on a new life. As they begin to explore the new LARGE house that now they are to call home, there is something strange about it.

To make this 'shorter' than what is in my head. ---- The kids find that if they use a round metal donut sized tool and look through it they can now see the 'unseen', a realm filled with creatures beyond their imaginations, some grand and beautiful, some grand and terrifying. There is a book, called the 'Field Guide'. In this book is documented issues of how to move and operate in this 'unseen' world. Of course there is 'evil' attempting to obtain the book, and will stop at nothing to destroy those who possess the book. The evil creature, observes and watches the children, he can transform himself into different forms to 'appeal' to their senses or transform for the need of the moment, such as a large slithery serpent.

This is full of parallel imagery for those of us in the Kingdom of God! There are times we are taken to a 'remote' place to start a new, fresh, seemingly away from the rest of the world. Once there it may seem strange. As we begin to explore this new world, we have opportunity to 'see' in the realm of grand and beautiful, grand and terrifying! We too are being pursued because we are people of 'THE BOOK', the field guide to how to move and operate in the 'unseen' world. And yes, there is a serpent in our scenario too, and he (little 'h') seeks to see what appeals to us and uses it against us, and too transforms into the 'need of the moment' to destroy us!

Each time those children looked through the metal donut to 'see', I was overwhelmed at how we would respond if we were afforded a 'true glance' into the spiritual realm. I think most of us would be terrified! Terrified in the sense that there ARE evil forces all around us, there is a real hell, a real devil and real dominions out to destroy us! BUT! (don't you love the 'but' that God offers!)

2 Kings 6, Elisha tells his servant who is extremely fearful of the overwhelming forces coming at them, verse 16 'don't be afraid, the prophet answered. 'those who are with us are MORE than those who are with them.' Elisha prays that the servant's eyes would be opened, and they are: 'he saw on the hills, full of horses and chariots of fire all around...' Whahoo - Go God!

'The book', doesn't save us, we are saved from the evil serpent who seeks to destroy us, by the ONE who wrote the book, the One who loves us, the One who from the very beginning to it's final pages declares, 'I AM here, on the hills - full of horses and chariots of fire all around - just but look up and see!'

I lift up my eyes to the hills-- where does my help
come from? My help comes from the Lord, the
Maker of heaven and earth. Ps. 121:1-2


Give us just a glimpse Lord, to the unseen, enough to confirm the realities of the realm, and to KNOW ... YOU are there!

~ DeDe

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Face to Floor

Just yesterday, my two dear friends were teasing me once again about 'DeDe and her carpet moments'. There are times I feel compelled to get down on the floor face down and pray. They think this strange. I do too, but I am strange. I am beginning a new study on the book of Psalms (a Beth Moore study) the teaching materials came last night.

As I began to read from the work book, I HAD to laugh out loud. She challenges us, each and every woman who is able to get down on the floor face down and pray, as we surrender and praise. Daily for the next 30 days, on our faces! I am SOOO looking forward to this! Not only am I weird, but by golly I am NOT alone! My heart smiled, as I felt God's smiling.

There is something to be said about forehead to the floor, extremely uncomfortable! When I first began to do this practice, I remember commenting to the Lord, not only 'boy do I need to vacuum', but 'God this is very uncomfortable' and I prepared to get a pillow, He said 'No, no pillow, it is suppose to be uncomfortable'.

Uncomfortable, face to floor, surrendered.

~ DeDe

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Fully There, Fully Theirs

I have been up since early morning, still dark out with the ground covered with frost. I prepare myself to study 'commissioning'. What is it? Who was commissioned, by whom and for what? The benefits to the commissioning and the cost of acceptance. I am on assignment for my pastor.

The insights are unfathomable, full of depth, I am looking at Adam and his call to 'tend to' the garden, the place where God's presence comes and walks with him. And Joshua, mentored by Moses, now placed in position to succeed him. Yet my thoughts keep coming back to what I feel the Lord is rubbing in my heart for my next devotional. 'Fully There, Fully Theirs'. Through recent conversations with a dear friend, my heart has been pricked by the Holy Spirit. When I am speaking, or in the presence, or even writing to an individual I need to be 'fully there, fully theirs'.

This life is so full of distractions, that in a sense we expect that what we say will NOT be heard, not be received, and with the internet, not read. Jesus was (is) NOT this way. Remember the CROWD, and the woman with the issue of bleeding comes up, Jesus stops and focuses on HER. The woman caught in adultery, again a crowd, Jesus takes the time to speak to HER. That focus on her, taught the crowd about mercy and love. Jairus, steps forward, also in the crowd, seeking Jesus to heal his daughter, Jesus full of compassion goes home with him and indeed the girl is healed. Jesus was fully there, fully theirs!

Taking the time to look someone in the eye, to speak in soft tones, to consider THEM there, in the moment, rather than what I want to say, share my opinion .... hearing THEM. This expresses priority, love and acceptance ~VALUE. THIS is my challenge. May I hear, see and read others ~ I want to be fully there, fully theirs!

~ DeDe

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Got'er done RIGHT!

Tonight, we went to my cousins wedding. Lovely ceremony, full of twinkly lights, candles, flowers ~ the whole works. As I sat waiting for the festivities to begin, I looked at the white runner that reached from the top of the platform to the back row of the seating. It was a long walk down that isle.

As Jared, (my cousin) stood at the foot of the steps to the platform, his eyes were fixed on the back of the room. The music played softly as each bridesmaid made her way up the isle, Jared's eyes still fixed on the back of the room.

Kristen, supported by her fathers arm took the steps up the isle. You could tell her father had tears in his eyes. Tender.

The pastor gave his greetings, and spoke his pastoral message, then offered communion to the bride/groom while a beautiful blend of harmony was sung off to the side. THEN, Jared and Kristine kissed. This was no ordinary kiss. This was their FIRST! What a cherished moment. Desire delayed for the divine. Hm... I am so very proud of them.

May our desires always be placed before the feet of the Divine.

~ DeDe

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

To Know ~

Last night (in our evening bible study) we learned what 'wisdom' is (and is NOT) and how so very valuable it is to us. Proverbs 4:7 "Wisdom is supreme, therefore GET WISDOM'. Nothing like a very subtle, in your face, highly commanding suggestion! Godly ~ biblical wisdom comes ONLY from God. It is to be sought after, from ... His person. It was described as wisdom in the palm of God's hand, yet that hand is closed, not easily taken, you need to place your hand into the hand of God and receive of Him, and in Him. It is while your hand is in His, relationship teaches you.

Wisdom is God given skillful living. The ability to do/be practically as God designed. I WANT that! My hand is raised, - wait - BOTH hands are raised. That particular study will be intense I can foresee, yet greatly insightful and extremely challenging.

This morning, I prepare for tomorrows ladies gathering, as we wrap up the Tabernacle study. I will end with Philippians 3:10: "I want to know Christ and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of sharing in His suffering, becoming like Him in His death."

"I want to KNOW Christ". That statement alone I have just spent an hour pondering, researching, praying. To know Jesus ~ this is NOT found in something I have 'heard', something I have 'read', something I have 'witnessed' in another. Yes, these ALL contribute to my knowledge ABOUT Him. But I want to know HIM. 'It is more important to know Him, than to know how'. That quote has stuck in my mind over the years, it was said to us, at my college graduation.

This 'know' (ginosko) is first hand knowledge. It begins with the head, 'to perceive with the mind', YET it is progressive, it doesn't just stop at the ability to understand. Yes, I want to recognize Jesus, understand Him, GET HIM (can you feel my intensity), but it is more, it is the seeking. As Paul says it, 'I want to know CHRIST ...' It is placing high value and importance on the object of my pursuit. JESUS.

The opposite? To NOT know Jesus, NOT pursue Him, is to leave us 'lacking or missing understanding'. It literally means to be ignorant. Nothing like being a stupid Christian.

This is how I would define these:

Wisdom, empowered, enabled, ENCOURAGED from the hand of God to live the skillful life, as designed by God, and God alone.

Knowing Jesus, the ongoing, personal pursuit ~ experiencing ~ relationship with the One I seek to KNOW.

~ DeDe

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Love Never Lost & Let Go

Since I am in a poetic mood, I will leave the below with you ~ I wrote this just days after I gave my heart to Jesus at the age of 17. I just found it in an old journal.

Once I was told
long long ago

of a story of love
never lost and let go

I went seeking the One
who holds this great love

They said He was found
under a soring white dove

I searched and I searched
for this thought in my dream

FINALLY, He was standing
among many by a flowing smoothe stream

I went to Him wondering
who gave this great love

He said 'I AM' and pointed
to the Father above.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Friends

Friends
There's nothing like a walk you know
To calm a troubled mind;
For worries like the air we breathe
It seems we leave behind.
It doesn't matter where we walk
Our spirit to defend.
It will be more healing though
If we walk with a friend.

A friend can help to bear the weight

That's really got us down.
The love of friends is all we need
To melt away our frown.
A friend relieves the pain as well
That stimulates the tears.
To be held close when 'darkness' falls
Will banish all our fears.

The walk through life can be so long

For those without a friend.
Increasing isolation though
Seems now to be the trend.
We shouldn't have to look for friends.
They should be part of life.
There're difficult to find because
Our lives are full of strife.

God help us make amends
So we create a life in which
We're all each other's friends.
(Doug E. Barr)

Friday, March 14, 2008

Quite Nostalgic

Fifteen! I can't believe it. My first born. WOW, I feel both 'old' and quite nostalgic about it. March 13, 1993 at 6:03pm (a mom remembers these things) my little man was born. After what I would call a 'grueling' birth, he was 8 pounds 10 ounces, me ~ small boned and first time mom, needed the doctors assistance to see he comes into the world. Bright blue eyed and VERY alert, he didn't cry. Me ~ I did. Mind you it was not pain that brought the tears, I had major DRUGS!

Out in the waiting room was the cheer-leading squad! All 15 of them. Those hopeful folks with the attitude 'she FINALLY got married - FINALLY had a baby', (I had recently turned 30). Mom, dad, step mom, sister, her family, pastor and his wife and friends galore!

What an event! Events have come and gone. But my boys carry the trophy! We celebrated his birthday last night, Joshua style. Sushi! His favorite. With all due respect I chose the teriyaki chicken. He has gone to the same Sushi place for the past few years and they know us by name there. As we finished our dinner, over the intercom began the traditional birthday instrumental anthem, how so sweet to have the Japanese waitress bring out a tall glass of green tea ice cream sporting a candle and cute umbrella (me again, I would choose the teriyaki chicken ~ HA!) This picture is Paul the owner of the restaurant.
Fifteen, yes the topic of 'can I drive now?' has assuredly come up. Answer, 'this nice silver shine in my hair does NOT need to multiple!' Life has thrown some garbage now and then, and a few curve balls along the way, but my boys are trophys (Joshua and Matthew, my 9 year old)
~ DeDe

Saturday, March 8, 2008

At My Desk

Ah, clean - organized ~ everything in its place ~ SO UN-ME! BUT, it actually happened. My desk is ...clean. I figured I had a new computer so I needed to create a nice home for it. There is now room for real activity, activity in the sense as to open some books, do some major 'digging', and digging I plan to do. If I need more room, I will pull out the card table and load that up too!

My goal is to keep it clean, but then again, I am a geeky, unorganized so I will not hold my breath, but it is good to have goals. I am trusting also that the Lord will meet me here ... at my desk.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

So Geeky!

What is new ~ beautiful ~ hums wonderfully ~ and will keep me entertained up to 6 HOURS?

YES! My new laptop arrived. My old one gave its last breath on Monday evening, then Tuesday afternoon, in rolls the UPS man (God love'em) bearing gifts from God! By the way those are NOT my legs, (to the right) thought I would have some fun pretending (smile).

As soon as I figured out how to turn it on, I was rolling! I made quick haste in picking the background wall paper. It is a dandy ~ a dark night over Canada, with the Northern Lights dancing. It is a dream of mine to see the Northern Lights in full array (someday). After this achievement, I created my screen saver, it rolls across the screen saying 'Epiginosko Him'. This is Greek for, 'knowing and experiencing God intimately'.

I know I could not settle in comfortably UNTIL I had my bible software loaded and active. As soon as I got the password for the online download, those wonderfully fabulous e-books were loaded. ALL 15 bible translations, multiple dictionaries, commentaries and sermon helps. I am humming now!

This morning after a full night of charging the battery, I was in AWE when I saw I had approximately 6 HOURS of power. WOW! This is a marathon at the library ~ a lock myself in the back storage room ~notes under the door 'send food' type of POWER! Now if I can just figure out how to transport this power and all my hard bound resources - I know 'I am SOOOO geeky!'

~ DeDe

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Jesus !

So many times I come to the word of God as a text book, and perhaps that is to be, since I am a bible teacher. Facts, dates, definitions, principles, verses and cross referencing are all good, and yet. Yet, God wants more. He wants life to flow from it.

This morning, as I was working through the study for the ladies bible study, I felt compelled to set it aside and go sit in front of the fire. I took my bible and began to read Psalms 103, and 104. Verse 34 of 104 jumped out at me, and there I stopped. "May my meditation be pleasing to Him, as I rejoice in the Lord."

Have I been meditating as I should, or do I dig and research only to give out? The Lord has been speaking to me about the 'woo-ing' of His Spirit. This morning I was 'woo-ed'. His grace enables us to respond. May I be bathed in His grace.

In my prayer time, I kept it simple: Father, for Barbie ~ Jesus! Little Matthew in Washington who is so sick ~ Jesus! For Lil, who is lost in her own world with dementia ~ Jesus! For my family ~ Jesus! My friends ~ Jesus! My own heart ~ Jesus! No more is needed.

Lord you know the mediation of my heart, as I rejoice in YOU! Thank You for the 'woo-ing', for the fire and Your word! All powered, and positioned by Jesus!

~ DeDe

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Passion to Privilege

Ever been given something that caused you to be so excited; you could not wait to show and share it with someone? Perhaps an object or even a new perspective you now have, an answer to prayer, or a triumph in your life. Our excitement in the Kingdom of God is not meant to be kept to ourselves.

We see this in David’s life. As he wrote with passion many of the Psalms, he couldn't wait to tell of … ‘what he had’. In Psalm 18, he begins with:

I love you, O Lord, my strength. The Lord is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge. He is my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold. (v.1-2)

This was not written as a teen skipping through the fields with his sheep. NO! David had come out of one of the biggest trials of his life ~ Saul was out to kill him! Yet God delivered him, and he HAD to tell about it. He declares:

He reached down from on high and took hold of me; He drew me out of deep waters. He rescued me from my powerful enemy, from my foes, who were too strong for me. They confronted me in the day of my disaster, but the Lord was my support. He brought me out into a spacious place; He rescued me because He delighted in me. (v.16-19)

Psalm 20 David takes his victories and shares them …

In times of trouble, may the Lord answer YOUR cry. May the name of the God of Jacob keep YOU safe from all harm. May He send YOU help from His sanctuary and strengthen YOU from Jerusalem. May He remember all YOUR gifts and look favorably on YOUR burnt offerings. May He grant YOUR heart’s desires and make all YOUR plans succeed. May we shout for joy when we hear of YOUR victory and raise a victory banner in the name of our God. May the Lord answer all YOUR prayers. (v.1-5 emphasis mine)

This week while at bible study, the Lord showed me something very personal; I sat next to a new gal, she in her mid 60’s, declared she is NEW to the bible and knows nothing about it, I found that to be true as I showed her where the book of John was. As the study progressed I helped her fumbled through the pages to find the verses we were looking at.

Then at one point I was driven to near tears. It hit me, what an awesome privilege to sit next to this woman. She was so hungry and wanted to learn so badly. Later, as she prepared to leave, she told me of her frustration of feeling inadequate when it comes to the bible and God things. I had the opportunity to share with her my passion for the Word of God and how that passion grew from trials in my life and God meeting with me. THIS encouraged her, she is coming back next week!

My excitement and passion ~ now a privilege!

Let no foul or polluting language, nor evil word nor unwholesome or worthless talk [ever] come out of your mouth, but only such [speech] as is good and beneficial to the spiritual progress of others, as is fitting to the need and the occasion, that it may be a blessing and give grace (God’s favor) to those who hear it. (Ephesians 4:29 The Amplified)

I admit I have taken this verse ‘slightly’ out of context, yet the truth is so relevant. May my excitement and passion be verbalized as to cause growth in others!

What passion has or is being birthed in YOU that someone next to you could benefit from? Do as David did, share God’s truth, share it from your life. What an honor and privilege to have God pour into our life as we in turn pour it out to others!

Passion to privilege.

In Him, DeDe (Ps. 92:4 You thrill me, LORD …)