Living Life in a Fish Bowl!

Gloria’s take on life.

sparkle

When I opened my shades this morning, I was greeted to a dusting of snow on the ground. My first thought was — look how it sparkles!

Sparkle — hmmm.

Sparkle was a code word for me when I worked at the clinic. It reminded me to stay positive, to not complain, and to let God’s love shine through in all situations.

So there I was looking out my window thinking about sparkling.  Of course, then, I was not about to complain about snow on April 19th.  So my next thought was ‘white as snow’ from Isaiah 1:18.

isa 1 18

‘white as snow’ — the transformation that takes place when we grasp the forgiveness that is ours through the blood of Jesus. His love for mankind kept Him on the cross. Death could not keep Him. His resurrection displayed His power.

So today as the temperature rises and the snow melts, may we remember the price that was paid so we could be ‘white as snow.’

Let’s sparkle!

til next time

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April 19, 2018 Posted by | just thinking about stuff, Pastor's wife, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

at the end of life

“Everyone has to die once, then face the consequences. Christ’s death was also a one-time event, but it was a sacrifice that took care of sins forever. And so, when he next appears, the outcome for those eager to greet him is, precisely, salvation.” Hebrews 9:27-28 (MSG)

 
Thinking of and praying for the Bush family as they grieve the loss of their wife, mother, grandmother, and great grandmother.
 
Here are a couple quotes from Barbara Bush.
 
 
“At the end of your life, you will never regret not having passed one more test, not winning one more verdict or not closing one more deal. You will regret time not spent with a husband, a friend, a child, or a parent.” told to the graduating class at Wellesley College 1990.
 
Here is another quote of hers.
 
“Never lose sight of the fact that the most important yardstick of your success will be how you treat other people — your family, friends, and coworkers, and even strangers you meet along the way,”
 
What is it that you want to be known for?
First and foremost I want people to remember that I loved God and loved people.
 
til next time
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April 18, 2018 Posted by | just thinking about stuff, Pastor's wife, relationships, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

surgeon’s scalpel

God means what he says. What he says goes. His powerful Word is sharp as a surgeon’s scalpel, cutting through everything, whether doubt or defense, laying us open to listen and obey. Nothing and no one is impervious to God’s Word. We can’t get away from it—no matter what.” Hebrews 4:12-13 (MSG)

Recently I went under a surgeon’s scalpel. A piece was removed that had been causing me trouble. Getting to it was more of a challenge than even the doctor had anticipated. At one point I reminded him that I had people praying.

God’s Word cuts through everything. It cuts through hatred, going through the motions, blame game, complacency, and lukewarmness. The Word will slice open excuses, doubts and false justification. Maybe this is why some Christians don’t pick up the Word and read it. They have missed the point though. God wants us to be free from things that would hinder us.

I could have refused the surgery. I could have ignored it. It still would have been there causing me trouble. When God’s Word reveals something to me, I can refuse to do anything about it. I can ignore it. I can come up with some excuse but none of that will change the fact that it needs to be dealt with. Instead, I say – Yes, God.

We come to God just as we are and then He steps in and helps us be all we were intended to be.

Let’s be people who listen and obey.

til next time

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March 20, 2018 Posted by | just thinking about stuff, living in a fish bowl, Pastor's wife, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

waiting 2 of 7

“O Lord, from the depths of despair I cry for your help: … I wait expectantly, trusting God to help, for he has promised..” Psalm 130:1,5 TLB

Sometimes the waiting is long because the work that is being done in me requires it. Waiting causes me to face my fears. Waiting helps me see my great need of Christ. I am nothing without Him. (John 15:5)

If I could have gotten myself out of the pit, I would have. My efforts alone bring about more frustration and misery. I learn the benefit of endurance while I wait. (Colossians 1:11)

Waiting expectantly….. We go from faith to faith, glory to glory, grace upon grace and strength upon strength. (Romans 1:17, John 1:16 2 Cor 3:18 Psalm 84:7)

I have come to see that waiting is truly a great gift God gives to me. (Isaiah 40:31) While I wait for the answer, the solution – my faith, hope and trust just grow deeper.

Keeping my eyes on Jesus, (Hebrews 12:2)

til next time

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March 12, 2018 Posted by | just thinking about stuff, living in a fish bowl, ministry, Pastor's wife, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

waiting 1st of 7

Waiting – it seems there are always areas in which I find myself waiting. Sometimes the waiting isn’t so bad but other times the dark night seems to drag on and on.

Today is the 1st in a series of 7 posts on waiting.

When it seems I am waist deep in the pit of a bleak situation and I feel myself sinking in the mud – I have a few choices.
*I can become impatient and try to use my own strength to get out – to change things.
*I can wallow in the mud – giving in to self-pity.
*I can play the blame game.
All of these choices result in sinking deeper in the mud.

There is another choice. I can seek God for help. I can cast my cares on Him (1 Peter 5:7) and take this time to go deeper in Christ. How? By reading His Word – I am grateful that each test of our faith is an open book test. Also we grow deeper by praying, taking time to listen, meditating, getting together with others at church to worship, pray, and hear God’s Word, listening to praise music – go ahead Sing!

“I waited patiently for the Lord to help me,
and he turned to me and heard my cry.
He lifted me out of the pit of despair,
out of the mud and the mire.
He set my feet on solid ground
and steadied me as I walked along.
He has given me a new song to sing,
a hymn of praise to our God.
Many will see what he has done and be amazed.
They will put their trust in the Lord.
Oh, the joys of those who trust the Lord, Psalm 40:1-4a NLT

I cry out to God. My faith knows He will help me.(Psalm 46:1) He will steady me. He will amaze. I trust God!

Using the waiting time to grow deeper in Christ.

til next time

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March 11, 2018 Posted by | just thinking about stuff, ministry, Pastor's wife, spiritual reflections, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

battle intensifies

Exodus 17 – The battle intensifies and I have a deeper understanding of the importance of Aaron and Hur as they held up Moses’ hands.

Moses sent Joshua and his men out to fight the warriors of Amalek.

11 “As long as Moses held up the staff in his hand, the Israelites had the advantage. But whenever he dropped his hand, the Amalekites gained the advantage. 12 Moses’ arms soon became so tired he could no longer hold them up. So Aaron and Hur found a stone for him to sit on. Then they stood on each side of Moses, holding up his hands. So his hands held steady until sunset. 13 As a result, Joshua overwhelmed the army of Amalek in battle.” Exodus 17:11-13

Are you a Moses, Aaron, Hur, Joshua, one of the soldiers or fighting against what God is doing?

Encouragement comes in many forms. Sadly so does discouragement. Let’s come along side each other and help!

I am grateful for the people in my life who pray for me, encourage me, come along side me, serve with me, hold my hands up…..we need each other.

til next time

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March 9, 2018 Posted by | just thinking about stuff, ministry, Pastor's wife, spiritual reflections, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

how’s your soul?

How’s your soul? (will, mind, emotions)
My morning started out a little rough. I have a pinched nerve in my neck that I thought was gone. Sadly the medicine was only masking the pain – not fixing it.

Did you know that you can change your day by changing your attitude?

My attitude was heading south. There are a ‘million’ things I could focus on concerning my health and the way I am feeling BUT I want to enjoy this day. There are no do overs. So as with anything in my life – I took it to God.

Maybe you need to pray this prayer with me.

“Good morning God. This is the day You have made and I am wanting to choose to rejoice in it. In order to do that I need Your help. Help me to not fixate on the pain, the ‘now what’, or the ‘how’, but to keep my eyes on You. You are good! You love me and You are working all things out for my good. Yes, even this pain. Help me to see beyond myself, to see the opportunities You have for me today. I can do what you set before me this day because You are with me. I choose hope! I choose You, Jesus! (Psalm 118:24, 46:1, 2 Cor 10:5, Heb 12:2, Rom 8:28, Col 4:5, Phil 4:13)

I also looked to God’s word to speak to my heart. If you haven’t read Ephesian 3 lately, I encourage you to read it.

My take on a few of the verses:
V6. God’s plan is that we belong to Him
V7. it is a privilege to serve God
V14 because of Jesus and our faith in Him, we can come to God boldly and confidently. We don’t have to have it all together or say the right things but we come just as we are.
V14-15 there is something special about kneeling before God – surrendering to the Creator of everything
V16 is my verse to hold on to today!
V17 trusting Christ (in the good and the bad, health and pain) sinks our roots deep in God’s love and that keeps us strong – I want that!
V18 God’s love – nothing greater (wide, long, high, deep) Makes me want to break out into song “Oh, how He loves us so. Oh how He loves us.”
V19 we don’t just know of His love, we experience His love
V20 God gets the glory! He is able to do more than we can even imagine

Yes, I am now ready to face the day as a mighty child of God.
What about you?

til next time

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March 7, 2018 Posted by | just thinking about stuff, living in a fish bowl, Pastor's wife, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

got love?

Some people have clearly forgotten what Jesus says in John 13:34-35 “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.”

David was familiar with the pain of a relationship that he thought was solid but wasn’t.

“Even my best friend, the one I always told everything
—he ate meals at my house all the time!—
has bitten my hand.” Psalm 41:9 (MSG)

matt 7 12

It is painful when someone you thought had your back – doesn’t. Oh how I wish the Golden Rule said that people WILL treat you the way you treat them. But it doesn’t. (Matthew 7:12) How we treat others is a reflection of our relationship with Jesus. Jesus says to love. I do believe that the deeper we fall in love with Jesus – the greater our love for mankind will be. “For God so loved…..”

But what about this person who has bitten my hand?

First I pray about it and ask God to guide me and to heal my broken heart. Then I ask Him to deal with that person. (Romans 12:19) There are times when I must step back and put some distance there. Healthy boundaries are a part of taking care of myself. God gives us wisdom to know what to do and strength to do it. The key is that in whatever we are doing – let’s remember to let God’s love guide us.

“Now these three remain: faith, hope, and love—but the greatest of these is love.” 1 Cor 13:13

How’s your love walk?

til next time

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February 25, 2018 Posted by | just thinking about stuff, living in a fish bowl, Pastor's wife, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

eating alone

There was a time in my life where I absolutely would not eat alone in a restaurant. Then  my job ended up with a  45 minute drive to my next location.  Lunch time was right in the middle. Sure I could pick up something and eat on the road but I really just wanted to sit somewhere for a bit and recharge.

It wasn’t long and I realized that I had been limiting my availability to God. While I thought lunch would be a recharging time, God chose something else. I have my own little Cheers thing going on – except that it isn’t a bar, but they know my name.

 

“Make the most of your chances to tell others the Good News. Be wise in all your contacts with them. Let your conversation be gracious as well as sensible, for then you will have the right answer for everyone.” Colossians 4:5-7 (TLB)

Recently a new woman came over to my table and before I knew it, she was spilling her life story. Oh, what a story it was.
I made the most of that opportunity and shared Jesus with her.

Have you made some decisions that limit how or when God can use you? It isn’t necessarily easy to step out and be available but it does get easier the more I do it.

Use wisdom and make the most of your opportunities to tell others about the hope that you have in Christ. Use your words to extend grace to those you talk with. Allow God to use you and He will.

Selah,

til next time

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February 23, 2018 Posted by | just thinking about stuff, living in a fish bowl, Pastor's wife, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

don’t lose hope

We are like a ship at sea. Sometimes it is smooth sailing, other times we are tossed up and down seemingly in great danger. Our harbor (final destination) is Heaven. Temptations, persecutions, problems, trials, obstacles, are the wind and the waves that threaten to shipwreck us. On our journey, we will encounter all sorts of beauty and danger.

“…My hope is in you.” Psalm 39:7

“We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure.” Hebrews 6:19

One thing remains sure. We have an anchor that will keep us steady and on course. Our hope in Jesus is the anchor for our soul. Our hope in Him will see us through the storms.

As the old hymn states “We are anchored in Jesus the storms of life we’ll brave. We are anchored in Jesus, we fear no wind or wave… We are anchored to the Rock of Ages.”

The enemy of our soul (will, mind, emotions) likes nothing better than to see people in despair – hopeless. For he knows, maybe even more than we know, that hope is a most powerful weapon. Hope is indeed the anchor of our soul.

“…because my hope, Lord, is in you.” Psalm 25:21

All our hope is in Christ!

hope

til next time

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February 21, 2018 Posted by | just thinking about stuff, Pastor's wife, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment