Living Life in a Fish Bowl!

Gloria’s take on life.

my focus needs focus

It’s been a week and it is only Tuesday. I’m sure we have all had weeks like that. I have found myself distracted way too much. My focus needs focus.
So I find myself going back to the basics. What is it that is most important? Are those things that are distracting me – things that need to be dealt with or things that are just taking up precious time and energy?
 
Am I putting off dealing with issues? That is rarely my problem but it could be yours. Am I avoiding the necessary steps? I am more of a cards all out on the table kind of gal. I’ve taken every step I know to take.  Just because I take the necessary steps doesn’t mean others will. For me, at this point I found myself stuck in a holding pattern waiting for a more positive outcome? Here it is hard to focus on much but the issue at hand.

 

Whatever it might be that is pulling your focus from being all that God wants you to be and fulfilling the plans that He has for you today – you can get back on track. Refocus.
Press On!
“… I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us.” Phil 3:13-14 NLT
Don’t let the enemy get you in a holding pattern. Keep pressing on. Don’t waste today worried about tomorrow. Live today. Don’t get stuck in the past. Forgive, give it to God, trust God to work it out for good and move forward.
I’m pressing on,

til next time

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God, I look to You – https://youtu.be/t4A0miZINNo

June 9, 2020 Posted by | covid 19, just thinking about stuff, ministry, Pastor's wife, relationships, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

i’m tired

I’m tired. I’m tired of covid. I’m tired of the guidelines that may or may not do any good and yet we follow them. I’m tired of the contradictions that are surrounding covid. I’m tired of the manipulation that I have felt as we move forward.

I’m tired of the injustice I see toward race. I’m tired of labels. I’m tired of the hatred towards cops. I’m tired that my friends don’t feel safe. I’m tired of discrimination.

I’m tired of the hatred toward Trump, Pelosi, and/or Obama and that list goes on and on. Hatred breeds hatred and there is nothing kind about it. Don’t think you can hate anyone and it not affect who you are as a person.

I’m tired of the looting. I’m tired of the media fueling the fires.

I’m tired. Maybe you are too.

So here’s what I am doing. Spending time with the One who loves all mankind and learning at His feet. I want to be more like Him – Jesus. I will look for the good in people and try to encourage that.

 

“Use your heads as you live and work among outsiders. Don’t miss a trick. Make the most of every opportunity. Be gracious in your speech. The goal is to bring out the best in others in a conversation, not put them down, not cut them out.” Colossians 4:5-6 (MSG)

 

Today is George Floyd’s funeral. Today I will be spending much time just ‘being still’ trusting that God will heal and mend the broken-hearted and show me how to reach the hurting.

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til next time

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June 4, 2020 Posted by | covid 19, just thinking about stuff, living in a fish bowl, Pastor's wife, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

communication

My heart is breaking for our country. Right now I feel inadequate to speak more on it. Please continue to pray for our fractured country.   So today’s devotional will be on a topic near to my heart.
 
Working as a Chaplain I get to see the culmination of a lifetime of choices people make. Before we even talk about anything deep, I see signs of whether they are a person of thankfulness, a person who cares or one that has harbored bitterness and resentment. It is there for all to see. Bitterness displays itself in many ways, some of which are cantankerous, a know it all attitude, anger, blame, distortion, name calling and/or self loathing.
 
“Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger; for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God. Therefore put away all filthiness and rampant wickedness and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls. But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.” James 1:19-22 ESV
james 1 19
How can we help those who are bitter? Be quick to listen. Sometimes people are more concerned about what they have to say and are waiting for an opportunity to speak instead of listening to what is being said. We can all grow in our ability to listen.
 
Be slow to speak. Think about what it is you are wanting to get across. Speak truth even if it is unpopular. However, this is not an invitation to be rude. (Eph 4:15)
 
Having a conversation with an angry resentful person is a challenge to say the least. Angry people seem to love to stir the pot. Be slow to get angry. This is something that most of us have room for growth. Replying in anger is bait the enemy uses to steal your peace. Don’t take the bait.
 
There’s so much more, but let’s work on being quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to get angry.
 
Father, I do not want to be a resentful person so I choose today to forgive and walk in love.
til next time
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June 3, 2020 Posted by | covid 19, living in a fish bowl, ministry, Pastor's wife, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

civil unrest

“Do all that you can to live in peace with everyone.” Romans 12:18 NLT
 
What an appropriate verse. Sadly our country is at civil unrest. So much anger – so much disregard for people and property – so much violence that is overshadowing the real issue.
 
I woke this morning to hear that Davenport has issued a stay at home order. Why? because there are those who are taking advantage of a horrible situation to promote hatred.
 
There will be people that, no matter how you try, they will hang on to their anger and nurse their bitterness. Do what you can to bring about peace. Do what you can to defuse the situation. And pray! Pray for them.
 
With someone who is bitter, guard your heart from either embracing that bitterness or taking it personally.My daddy told me often — “Like water off a ducks back Gloria — let their words slide like water off a ducks back.”
 
Instead, look for the good.  Be the good. The golden rule does not say to treat people how they treat you. (Matt 7:12) Let’s be people who see the good in others. Let’s be people who reach out with love when others reach out in hate. Let’s be people who see others as God sees them. Let’s be people who do what we can to live in peace with everyone.
 
“Use your heads as you live and work among outsiders. Don’t miss a trick. Make the most of every opportunity. Be gracious in your speech. The goal is to bring out the best in others in a conversation, not put them down, not cut them out.” Col 4:5-6 MSG
 
Lord, have mercy on our country. Heal our land. Heal the pain. Help us to not cause pain. You have shown us how to live. Help us to follow your lead. May our reactions, our responses be pleasing to You. You have called us to love.
 
matt 7 12
til next time
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June 1, 2020 Posted by | covid 19, just thinking about stuff, Pastor's wife, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

crumbling?

How are you doing? We are 2 1/2 months into Covid19.
 
Is your ship sinking? Is your house crumbling? Have you had more than enough?
 
It seems that once we start to spiral downward – the spinning goes faster and faster.
 
I ask you to look at your foundation. Foundation – the lowest load bearing part of the building, typically below ground level.
 
For you, what is bearing the load of your life? What are you standing on? What is it that you are depending on to see you through? Where is your anchor? When life is turned upside down, who/what do you cling to?
 
We were never meant to do life on our own. God desires to walk with us. He is an ever-present help in trouble. (Psalm 46:1)
 
“Why do you call me ‘Lord, Lord,’ and not do what I tell you? Everyone who comes to me and hears my words and does them, I will show you what he is like: he is like a man building a house, who dug deep and laid the foundation on the rock. And when a flood arose, the stream broke against that house and could not shake it, because it had been well built. But the one who hears and does not do them is like a man who built a house on the ground without a foundation. When the stream broke against it, immediately it fell, and the ruin of that house was great.” Luke 6:46-49 ESV
 
If your life is spiraling downward, look up and then build your foundation on the Solid Rock.
 
til next time
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May 27, 2020 Posted by | covid 19, life, Pastor's wife, relationships, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

what is your anchor?

Hope

“And so, Lord, where do I put my hope? My only hope is in you.” Psalm 39:7 NLT

Our hope is in God.

“Show me the right path, O Lord;
point out the road for me to follow.
Lead me by your truth and teach me,
for you are the God who saves me.
All day long I put my hope in you.” Psalm 25:4-6 (NLT)

All day long I put — it is a continuous choice we make.

Hebrews tells us that hope is the anchor for our souls. Anchor – holds us in place — provides strength and support

“…Therefore, we who have fled to him for refuge can have great confidence as we hold to the hope that lies before us. This hope is a strong and trustworthy anchor for our souls. It leads us through the curtain into God’s inner sanctuary. Jesus has already gone in there for us. He has become our eternal High Priest in the order of Melchizedek.”
Hebrews 6:18-20 (NLT)

Whatever we face, we have hope in God. He will see us through! Not only will He see us through – He will bring beauty out of ashes. (Isa 61:3)

heb 6 19 20

til next time

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May 20, 2020 Posted by | covid 19, Pastor's wife, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Way Maker

How’s your day going? How’s your week? Do you even know what day it is? Days have turned into weeks and weeks have turned into months. One thing stays true – God changes not. (Malachi 3:6, Numbers 23:19)
 
Today has consisted of going in for a blood draw – dropping Hurts donuts off at work (It’s been 11 weeks.💔) — writing this devotional and then I will be crunching numbers and paying bills.
 
I have also been listening to WayMaker over and over again.
 
God is here. God is there with you also. (Matt 28:20)
 
He is working in our midst. (Luke 17:21, 1 Cor 12:6)
 
Have you taken time to worship Him today?
 
He is the **Way Maker** (Isaiah 43:16 ESV)
“Thus says the Lord,
who makes a way in the sea,
a path in the mighty waters,”
.
 
**Miracle Worker** (Psalm 77:13-14 NIV)
“Your ways, God, are holy.
    What god is as great as our God?
You are the God who performs miracles;
    you display your power among the peoples.”
.
 
**Promise Keeper** (2 Corinthians 1:20 NLT)
“For all of God’s promises have been fulfilled in Christ with a resounding “Yes!” And through Christ, our “Amen” (which means “Yes”) ascends to God for his glory.”
.
 
**Light in the Darkness** (Psalm 18:28 NLT)
“You light a lamp for me.
The Lord, my God, lights up my darkness.”
.
 
That is who He is!!!
 
He is making a way for me. He is making a way for you.
 
til next time
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May 19, 2020 Posted by | covid 19, just thinking about stuff, Pastor's wife, spiritual reflections, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

laugh

Laughter
I laugh often, sometimes not often enough. I am learning to laugh more. Spilt milk – laughter is so much better than frustration. Stub my toe – laughter makes it not hurt as much.
 
Laughter is contagious.
 
Just this morning I was watching a video of this woman who could barely talk due to laughing so hard at herself. It was so contagious that it brought my husband into the dining room to see what could possibly be so funny.
 
Negativity, anger, irritation are all contagious but so is laughter. May we be people who spread laughter.
 
“Strength and dignity are her clothing, and she laughs at the time to come.” Proverbs 31:25 ESV (Notice strength, dignity, laughter with worry/fear not mentioned anywhere.)
During covid19 it can be easy to slip into the trap of the enemy and see only bad reports.  The media will give you ample opportunities to focus on what is going wrong.  While we need to be people who are aware of what is happening, we should not become people filled with fear and worry.   Don’t fall for that trap. 
God is still God.  He is still greater.  He has a plan and He is working things out for your good.  Trust Him.  (Romans 8:28)  Raise your shield of faith high and quench those darts of the enemy.  (Eph 6:16)
“He will yet fill your mouth with laughter and your lips with shouts of joy.” Job 8:21 ESV (Psalm 126:2)
 
If, like me, you have responsibilities and deadlines that need your attention — determine to find things to laugh about. It is a great stress release. Watch a cat video if you can’t think of anything else.
til next time
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May 14, 2020 Posted by | covid 19, Pastor's wife, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

darkness needs your light

Darkness -absence of light – wickedness, evil, fear are all associated with darkness.
 
The world we find ourselves in certainly has an abundance of fear. Wickedness – the quality of being evil or morally wrong is also evident. You don’t have to look far to see ugliness and mean spirited people. Hatred breeds hatred.
curtis 2
As Christians we are called to be salt and light. (Matt 5:13-16)
 
“…let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.” (verse 16)
 
We are called to be people of love.
 
“Let all that you do be done in love.” 1 Cor 16:13 ESV
 
If you are going to hate something. Hate what is wrong. Hate injustice. When it comes to people, remember what Jesus said. Love your enemy. (Matt 5:43-44) If he is hungry, feed him. If he is thirsty, give him something to drink. (Romans12:20)
 
Yes, we are called out of darkness. (1 Peter 2:9) We are called to love.
 
“Don’t just pretend that you love others: really love them. Hate what is wrong. Stand on the side of the good.” Romans 12:9 TLB
 
They will know we are Christians by our love. (John 13:34-35)
 
til next time
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May 13, 2020 Posted by | covid 19, Pastor's wife, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

opening the doors

We are opening Sunday and while I am excited about that, there is also a weight that comes with that decision. There are things that need to be done. Changes that will be implemented. It is one more unknown in this uncharted territory I find myself in.
 
Recently, I became aware that the weight was even heavier than I thought. Sometimes we carry around a heavy load that God does not intend for us to carry.
 
“Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, 2 looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.” Heb12:1-2 ESV
 
I want to focus on laying aside every weight. (Certainly if there is sin that you know is standing in between you and God – get rid of it. Acknowledge it to God and ask Him to help you change. He will.)
 
Laying aside every weight — what is weighing you down? What is that heavy burden that is pressing on you?
 
Jesus has the answer.
 
“Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. ” Matt 11:28 NLT
 
Take your burden to Jesus – trusting Him to work it out, to give you wisdom, to provide strength, to shower you with renewed hope.
 
Read the rest of Hebrews 12. It will encourage you!
 
Thank you Jesus for the rest you give. Today I choose to walk in Your unforced rhythms of grace. (Matt 11:28-30 MSG)
til next time
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May 12, 2020 Posted by | covid 19, just thinking about stuff, living in a fish bowl, ministry, Pastor's wife, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment