Living Life in a Fish Bowl!

Gloria’s take on life.

even if

I was listening to “Even If” by MercyMe and my thoughts went to the 3 Hebrew children in Daniel 3.

16 Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego replied to him, “King Nebuchadnezzar, we do not need to defend ourselves before you in this matter. 17 If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we serve is able to deliver us from it, and he will deliver us from Your Majesty’s hand. 18 But even if he does not, we want you to know, Your Majesty, that we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set up.”

God is able and He will deliver but Even If He doesn’t….

Even if He doesn’t — He is worthy to be trusted. He is worthy to be praised. He is God! His ways/thoughts are so much higher than what we can comprehend. (Isaiah 55:9)

Notice what they said to the king before this. “We do not need to defend ourselves before you in this matter.” I have learned that lesson also. The Lord is my defense. (Psalm 118:14) I do not need to defend my actions when I am walking in obedience to His Word.  You do not need to defend your actions when you are walking in obedience to His Word.

 

mercyme

My hope is You, Lord.

It is well with my soul

til next time

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February 14, 2018 Posted by | living in a fish bowl, pastor, Pastor's wife, spiritual reflections | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

it’s monday – how’s your soul?

Here it is the Monday morning.   We pack a lot into our weekends so it is not unusual for  exhaustion to set in on Monday morning.

I want to do it all!  Yet, it can cause weariness to set in if I’m not careful.  (hmm, I am starting to see a pattern in my life.)

 

matthew 11 28

 

Sadly, when our schedule gets overloaded – spending time with Jesus can get squeezed out of our day.   It isn’t like it is an intentional thing but nonetheless it can so easily happen. Then is it any wonder we find ourselves overwhelmed?

I encourage you to be adamant about spending quiet time with God. If your days are filled like mine – it may be the only quiet time you get each day but it will be enough.

Jesus is more than enough.

Another thing you can give yourself and others is the gift of laying down expectations. My mother set the bar high for her daughters.  She worked full time and her house always looked great.   She rose early and was the last one to bed.  I can’t live up to that expectation of myself.   Laying that down has been very liberating.

“Dear friend, I pray that you may enjoy good health and that all may go well with you, even as your soul is getting along well.” 3 John 2 (NIV)

How’s your soul?

Maybe spending time with Jesus right now is what you truly need.

Selah,
til next time

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February 12, 2018 Posted by | living in a fish bowl, ministry, Pastor's wife, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

i want to do it all!

How’s your soul? (will, mind, emotions)

“Bless the Lord, O my soul,
And all that is within me, bless His holy name.” Psalm 103:1

Often I have to make the choices so that I am not going to get crazy stressed.   I have to talk with God about it often, otherwise I am pretty much programed to over-work and over-extend myself.

I want to do it all!

“He makes me to lie down in green pastures: he leads me beside the still waters.” Psalm 23:2 Yes, still waters in the middle of Christmas prep.

Lysa Terkeurst shares (in her book The Best Yes) four important things to consider when making commitments. Will this fit physically, financially, spiritually, and emotionally?

I generally have no problem deciding if I can physically do the task, if we have the money for the task or if the task is in line with God’s Word. However, do I have the emotional energy needed to complete the task? This is the one that I have tended to ignore in the past.

Here’s what can happen when we don’t consider if we have the emotional energy needed. We may grumble the whole time. We may take it out on those closest to us. We may even not follow through with what we had said that we would do. Something will give and usually it isn’t a good thing.

When I ask myself those 4 questions then I am able to decide my best yes. Just because it is a good thing doesn’t mean it is good for me to do it at this time. As much as I want to do it all, I can’t. And neither can you.

How’s my soul? Good, real good!

What about you? How is your soul?

Silah,

til next time

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February 10, 2018 Posted by | just thinking about stuff, living in a fish bowl, Pastor's wife, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

hopeless? or hopeful?

Do things seem hopeless?  Are you in the middle of a struggle that threatens to overtake you?   Does it seem you take one step forward and then fall three steps backwards?

I do whole heartedly believe that every day has some good in it.  If  I can see nothing else, just knowing that God is with me and has not abandoned me is good.  It seems that it is in our darkest hours where our faith has the potential to grow the most.

Say it with me
“Now may ‘You’ the God of Hope fill ‘me’ with all joy and peace as ‘I’ trust in ‘You’ so that ‘I’ will overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” Romans 15:13. (personalized)

God is the God of Hope! As we trust Him, our faith grows. If you seem to be lacking joy and peace, look at where you are putting your trust. Joy and peace are a by-product of trust.

Trusting God impacts our outlook. Overflowing with hope impacts others.

Hope, and joy and peace and hope again. Let that soak in.

Selah,

til next time

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January 20, 2018 Posted by | living in a fish bowl, ministry, pastor, Pastor's wife, spiritual reflections, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

dread

Is there a task that you dread doing? Maybe something that just gets under your skin and yet it needs to be done?

When the boys were young, I hated washing dishes.

When we moved from the apartment to the house, it only got worse. I found myself also hating my house – especially my kitchen. Yet, God had given us this house. I knew that I knew that this house was a big blessing from God.

I needed to take control of my words and speak life not death. (Proverbs 18:21 – I stopped saying I hate this house and instead I began to thank God for our home. Wow! What a transformation took place in me.)

I still needed to find a solution to my dishes problem. So I prayed.

“And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him.” Colossians 3:17

Whatsoever! How is this possible?

verse 16 “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.” (here is a plug for church also — we need each other)

Later that week I had received in the mail my teaching from Joyce Meyer. WaLa! I popped it in and that began a beautiful journey of doing dishes with Joyce. To this day, I still do dishes with Joyce and I love it.

Whatever it might be that tempts you to complain or dread, ask God to show you how to get victory over it. Dig in His Word for insight. Pray, praise, read the Word and apply it to your situation. Use your words to speak life not death.

til next time

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January 14, 2018 Posted by | just thinking about stuff, living in a fish bowl, ministry, pastor, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

is life a bit foggy?

I do not enjoy driving in fog. I like to see where I am going.

prov 3 5Sometimes in life, it seems like I am maneuvering through fog. not able to see very far ahead, and it can almost seem as if I am in this alone. But God!

“Lean not on your own understanding.” We see the immediate. God sees the whole picture. No matter how much time we spend trying to reason something out – some things won’t make sense this side of heaven.

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart;
do not depend on your own understanding.
Seek his will in all you do,
and he will show you which path to take.
Don’t be impressed with your own wisdom.
Instead, fear the Lord and turn away from evil.
Then you will have healing for your body
and strength for your bones.” Proverbs 3:5-(NLT)

Fear the Lord and turn away from evil. It seems that the entertainment industry is bent on glorifying evil. I remember watching a comedy that had quite a few laughs but many of the choices the main character made were ungodly. This was eye opening for me. What does it mean to you to turn from evil?

Trust in God with everything in you. Seek Him – not just for the big decisions but seek His will for each day. Recognize that wisdom comes from God. The beginning of wisdom is the fear of the Lord. (Proverbs 1:7)

“Don’t be afraid, I’ve redeemed you.
I’ve called your name. You’re mine.
When you’re in over your head, I’ll be there with you.
When you’re in rough waters, you will not go down.
When you’re between a rock and a hard place,
it won’t be a dead end—
Because I am God, your personal God,
The Holy of Israel, your Savior.” Isaiah 43 (MSG)

til next time

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January 13, 2018 Posted by | just thinking about stuff, living in a fish bowl, pastor, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

cease striving? seriously?

Sometimes it is necessary to pause, take a deep breath, maybe even close your eyes, and say “God, I believe You are greater. You are with me right here, right now. I Trust You!”

“Be still, and know that I am God!
I will be honored by every nation.
I will be honored throughout the world.” pain 46:10 (NLT)

Be still – cease striving – let go – relax

We all face challenges. Life can seem to get out of control. What we do then – matters. Do we let our flesh (our feelings) take over? Or do we crucify those feelings and allow the Spirit to lead us into truth? Do we pick up our Bible?

I do believe that God will either calm the storm or if the storm is going to continue to rage – He will calm His child. It is in times like these that our faith deepens and our trust grows as we rely on Him.

“Jesus Himself was in the stern, asleep on the cushion; and they woke Him and said to Him, “Teacher, do You not care that we are perishing?” And He got up and rebuked the wind and said to the sea, “Hush, be still.” And the wind died down and it became perfectly calm. And He said to them, “Why are you afraid? Do you still have no faith?” Mark 4:38-40 (NASB)

I am going to stand right here in the middle of this moment and believe God!! Sometimes I can be in such a “fix it” mode that I just need to stand still and let God’s peace flood my heart. Let go and let God!

If you are worrying, stressing, afraid, weary…. Pause and remind yourself that God has you in the palm of His hand, He loves you, He is for you, He is working all things out, He holds you together, and you are His!

til next time

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January 12, 2018 Posted by | life lessons, living in a fish bowl, pastor, relationships, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Christmas is coming….

Here it is the day before the day before Christmas. For some, by this point, exhaustion has set in. In addition to your normal full schedule, you have added decorating, a list of people to shop for, cards to send, treats to make, parties to go to, and a host of holiday commitments.
 
All these things are good. I want to do it all! Yet, it can cause weariness to set in if I’m not careful.
 
Jesus says to us “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28 (NIV)
matthew 11 28
 
Sadly, when our schedule gets overloaded – spending time with Jesus can get squeezed out of our day. It isn’t like it is an intentional thing but nonetheless it can so easily happen. Then is it any wonder we find ourselves overwhelmed?
 
I encourage you to be adamant about spending quiet time with God. If your days are filled like mine – it may be the only quiet time you get each day but it will be enough. Jesus is more than enough.
 
Another thing you can give yourself and others is the gift of laying down expectations. My mother would make 20 different Christmas treats (some years more than that) and her house always looked great. I can’t live up to that expectation of myself. Laying that down was very liberating.
 
Also, look for the good in others and extend to people grace. This is good advice for any last minute Christmas shopping.
 
“Dear friend, I pray that you may enjoy good health and that all may go well with you, even as your soul is getting along well.” 3 John 2 (NIV) How’s your soul? Maybe spending time with Jesus right now is what you truly need.
 
til next time
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December 23, 2017 Posted by | life lessons, living in a fish bowl, ministry, Pastor's wife, spiritual reflections | , , , , , | Leave a comment

true desire

Curtis

“One thing I have desired of the Lord,
That will I seek:
That I may dwell in the house of the Lord
All the days of my life,
To behold the beauty of the Lord,
And to inquire in His temple.”   Psalm 27:4

December 9, 2017 Posted by | just thinking about stuff, living in a fish bowl | , , , , , | Leave a comment

but as for me…..

“But as for me…”
This is a phrase that is repeated often in the Bible. It is my battle cry.

In a world where sin abounds – what we do matters. We are all broken – just in different ways. Being broken isn’t the end. What we do with our brokenness is the point.

We can allow our brokenness to turn into judgment, self-righteousness, bitterness… Or we can turn to God and allow Him to mend our brokenness with His peace, joy, love… We can choose to let God shine through our brokenness.

But as for me – I need You, God
But as for me – You are my provider
But as for me – I will not fear
But as for me – You are my strength
But as for me – I trust You
But as for me – You are my shield
But as for me – I choose joy
But as for me – You give me life
But as for me – I will praise You
But as for me – You are in control
But as for me – I want to be more like You
But as for me – use my brokenness for Your glory

What about you? What is your battle cry?

psalm 71 14

Selah,

til next time

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December 8, 2017 Posted by | life lessons, living in a fish bowl, ministry, Pastor's wife, relationships, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment