Living Life in a Fish Bowl!

Gloria’s take on life.

enjoy today

 
I enjoy my life. It is very full – which is how I like it. I vaguely remember being bored back when I was a child. My dad took care of that quickly. By the time I was 7, I was the only child at home. Learning how to entertain myself was a wonderful gift that has carried into my adult life.
 
I enjoy life, yet, there are times that I find myself worn out – exhausted. (I’m not talking about the tiredness that comes with my current health issues but a mental exhaustion.)
 
Truth is that each time that occurs, I can trace it back to not spending enough time at the feet of Jesus. Unforced rhythms of grace is only possible as we walk with and work with Jesus. He teaches us how to rest and how to live life freely and lightly.
Mark 6 31 (3)
 
“Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.” Matt 11:28-30 MSG
 
Are you tired? Jesus is calling you to come away for awhile and sit at His feet. The most important thing you can do today is to spend time with Him.
 
“Cultivate an awareness of His presence.” (Curtis Girod)
 
He is with you always. He is able! He is greater! Allow Him to fill you to overflowing with renewed hope!! (Romans 15:13)
 
 
Loving the life Jesus has given you is one way for you to show your gratitude! “Celebrate God all day, every day. I mean, revel in him!” Phil 4:4 MSG
til next time
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September 5, 2019 Posted by | just thinking about stuff, living in a fish bowl, Pastor's wife, spiritual reflections, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

truth

Every obstacle is an invitation to trust. Living out our life, trusting God to fill us with courage and strength, standing on His Word, embracing the truth….
 
We are more than conquerors through Him. (Romans 8:37)
All our sufficiency, our power and success comes from God (2Cor 3:5)
Our Victory is through Jesus (2 Cor 15:57)
We have enough grace (2 Cor 12:9)
He is working all things out for our good (Romans 8:28)
He will never leave us alone (Heb 13:5)
weapons formed against us will not be more powerful (Isa 54:17)
We have God’s help in the present moment (Psalm 46:1
God is for us (Rom 8:31)
Jesus is consistent (Heb 13:8)
He will make a way (Isa 43:16)
He will provide streams in the dessert (Isa 43:19)
Our sorrow is turned into joy (Psalm 30:11)
Our broken heart He heals (Psalm 147:3)
Giants are defeated (1 Sam 14:47)
God is faithful and true (Heb 10:23)
He sustains us ( Psalm 55:22
Our ashes He turns into beauty (Is 1:3)
Our God is greater – period (1 John 4:4)
He lifts up our head (Psalm 3:3)
He is our anchor through the storms of life (Heb 6:19)
His name is Jehovah Jireh – our provider (Gen 22: 14)
He is the God of wonders (Psalm 77:14)
There is none like Him and He is crazy in love with you! (Jer 10:6, John 3:16)
 
Make up your mind – live in the truth. You are victorious through Christ.
 
til next time
(I would love for you to add to this list in the comments section.)
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September 5, 2019 Posted by | just thinking about stuff, living in a fish bowl, Pastor's wife, spiritual reflections, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

life abundant?

I enjoy my life. It is sometimes crazy, always full, and even in the hard times I know that God is with me. I decided a long time ago to live life fully — living the abundant life Jesus talked about. (John 10:10)
 
Unforced rhythms of grace is how I can enjoy all that I do. God’s grace is enough for whatever today holds. Walking with and working with the leading of the Holy Spirit is key to living the abundant life – to enjoying life.
 
Why would I choose to be miserable when I can enjoy today!!
I once said that I wanted to do it all. What I meant by that is — all that God has for me to do. I want to embrace each day as a gift from God – because it is.
 
I think it can be easy to fall short of what God has planned for us. “Not my will but Yours be done” is a powerful prayer. However, when we sense the leading to do something that requires discipline on our part or a greater sacrifice than we really want to make… — you see where I am going with this. Yet, the abundant life is tied into saying yes to God.
 

mark 6 31 (2)
“…Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life…. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.” Matthew 11:28-30 MSG
 
Walk with and work with Jesus. Operate in the unforced rhythms of grace.
 
Tomorrow I will look at what to do when you feel worn out.
til next time
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September 4, 2019 Posted by | just thinking about stuff, living in a fish bowl, Pastor's wife, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

sunshine or Sonshine

I woke up this morning with the old song “I’ve got sunshine on a cloudy day” going through my mind. It did make me wonder what is ahead for this day.
matt 5 16
Truth is – we can bring our own ‘sunshine’ with us wherever we go.
 
“In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.” Matthew 5:16 ESV
 
Is Christ’s light shining through you? Decide right now that come what may, the light of Christ will shine through you today. Christ’s love shining through your words, actions and non-verbal communication to a world that so badly needs the hope that we have in Christ.
 
Singing…… I’ve got Sonshine on a cloudy day…. What can make me feel this way? My God! Talking about my God!
 
“For it is you who light my lamp;
the Lord my God lightens my darkness.” Psalm 18:28
 
To God be the glory,
til next time
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September 3, 2019 Posted by | just thinking about stuff, living in a fish bowl, Pastor's wife, Woman Pastor | , , , , , | Leave a comment

my tired is tired

Are you tired today? Maybe every day?  Maybe you are tired of being tired — what do can you do?
 
The obvious should be addressed: Your schedule, your sleep patterns, your diet and exercise, and how much water are you drinking? All of these impact our bodies ability to handle the day to day stresses. If one or more of these is out of whack – don’t be surprised that you are exhausted.
 
There is another aspect that often gets overlooked. Our relationship to God! We were never meant to do things in our own strength.
 
Isaiah 40:29 He gives power to the tired and worn out, and strength to the weak… 31 But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.” (TLB)
 
“The Lord God is my strength,
And He has made my feet like hinds’ feet,
And makes me walk on my high places.” (Habakkuk 3:19 NASB)
My own strength is insufficient to deal with the many situations that I face. God never intended for you or me to operate out of our own strength. In fact, many times scripture reminds us that God is our refuge and our strength.
 
There are times when God pours into us strength in abundance and we seem to run the race before us. (Hebrews 12:1) There are other times when God give us strength bit by bit so that we can walk in His statutes (Lev 26:3) and walk in love (Eph 5:2) leaning on Him every step of the way.
 
One thing is for certain, He will give us the strength we need when we need it. He is in control and He is for us. (Psalm 118:6)
 
So as you face situations that seem daunting, trials that seem to never end, heartache, or health issues remember where your strength comes from. Spend time today talking with God and casting your cares. (1 Peter 5:7)
 
in my weakness, He is strong,
til next time
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August 22, 2019 Posted by | just thinking about stuff, living in a fish bowl, Pastor's wife, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

a new day

A new day dawns. What will it hold?
 
I choose. I choose whether I will look for the good or fixate on the not so good. I choose if I will spend time at the feet of Jesus. I choose how I will handle the things that come my way. Will I trust God? Will I allow frustration to reign? Oh, life goes so much better when I let God reign.
 
I remind myself at the start of this day that God is in control. Whatever comes my way, He is with me. (Matt 28:20) He is for me. (Psalm 118:6) He is working all things out for my good. (Romans 8:28) His grace is enough to see me through. (2 Cor 12:9) He will make a way. (Isaiah 43:16) He is an ever present help in whatever circumstance I find myself in. (Palms 46:1)
 
Remember, you are as close to God as you choose to be. Spend some time with Him today. It is the best choice you will make.
 
 
til next time
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August 20, 2019 Posted by | just thinking about stuff, living in a fish bowl, Pastor's wife, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

peace and joy

Life can be like rain. Sometimes it is a gentle rain. It waters the earth and freshens things up. Other times it can be a torrential down pour that can make driving dangerous.

Life can be like that at times. It can seem to come at us fast and furious. We barely catch our breath and here comes more.

I am reminded that my attitude plays a huge role in how I handle the rain storms and the storms of life.

The Message Bible reminds us in James 1:2-4

“Consider it a sheer gift, friends, when tests and challenges come at you from all sides. You know that under pressure, your faith-life is forced into the open and shows its true colors. So don’t try to get out of anything prematurely. Let it do its work so you become mature and well-developed, not deficient in any way.”

Jesus tells us in John 16:33 “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.” (NIV)

So, when you feel life coming at you full speed ahead — remember peace is available through Jesus.

Peace and joy go hand in hand.
Joy is peace dancing and Peace is joy resting!

 

til next time

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August 16, 2019 Posted by | just thinking about stuff, living in a fish bowl, Pastor's wife, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

meditation anyone?

Do you find yourself going over and over something?  Then you know how to meditate.  The importance is what you are going over and over.
We can rehash a bad experience and that takes us to a negative place.  We can dwell on something that made us angry.  That is a great way to stay angry.
As a christian we are told to meditate on God’s Word.
Let’s do that today.  Wherever you find yourself, take some time to meditate on God’s Word.
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Are you feeling stressed?
“do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Phil 4:6-7 ESV
Are you tired?
“Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” Matt 11:28-30 ESV
Are you overwhelmed?
“From the end of the earth I will cry to You, When my heart is overwhelmed; Lead me to the rock that is higher than I.” Psalm 61:2 NKJV
Do you need to be reminded that God loves you?
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” John 3:16 KJV
Does life seem out of control?
“Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom,and your dominion endures through all generations. The Lord is trustworthy in all he promisesand faithful in all he does.
The Lord upholds all who falland lifts up all who are bowed down.” Psalm 145:13-14 NIV
Here is what I am meditating on today?
“The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases;his mercies never come to an end;they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” Lamentation 3:22-23 ESV
What are you meditating on today?
til next time
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June 20, 2019 Posted by | just thinking about stuff, life lessons, living in a fish bowl, ministry, Pastor's wife, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

not my friend

I thought I  was done with you.  I had said my good byes.   You are a horrible ‘friend’.   You cause nausea, headaches, sleepless nights and make me feel on edge All The Time.

I thought that I was all better without you.  I thought I no longer needed you.  And then I got the call.

When the doctor informed me that he was putting me back on prednisone (this time for six weeks) I knew it was a challenge that I did not feel I was up to handling.   Prednisone you are not kind.  Your friendship is certainly a challenge I do not want.   Many of you know that it really doesn’t matter when your body has issues.

So I do what I know works. When in the midst of a challenge I don’t want to face, I fall on my face before God. I stay there and return there every time that peace seems to be outside my grasp. Becoming aware of His presence brings a calmness that is much needed.

Nothing takes Him by surprise. He specializes in giving His children peace that goes beyond our ability to understand the why’s and how’s. (Philippians 4:6-7)

When I give in to the frustration of this ‘friendship’ I take my eyes off of Jesus.  My awareness of His presence is hindered by my focus on the reaction my body is giving to this drug.

Luke 6:45 is my battle cry!

“The good person out of the good treasure of his heart produces good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure produces evil, for out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks.” Luke 6:45 ESV

 

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So I fill my heart with more and more of God’s Word and I meditate on His goodness.  I hold tightly to this scripture that says out of my heart is what my mouth will speak.  It is not out of my pain or out of my edginess.  I’ve asked God to set a guard over my mouth – to keep watch over the door of my lips.  (Psalm 141:3)

Will I get it right every time?  No!  I can tell you that I have had to apologize and I have no doubt that I will need to apologize again.  Yet, that does not mean that I just give in to the medicine and be a jerk.

 

What challenges are you facing? Let God arise and scatter fear and doubt. Let God fill you to overflowing with hope. (Romans 15:13)

God’s got this!  More important God’s got me and He has you too if you will just lean on Him.

til next time

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April 12, 2019 Posted by | just thinking about stuff, living in a fish bowl, Pastor's wife, relationships, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

this is what they meant??

Prednisone you are not my friend.   You’ve been responsible for a flood of tears.  You bring with you weight gain but even worse than that you mess with my emotions in a way that I have never before experienced.   You had better be worth it.   (I go for a stress test Wednesday.  That will be interesting as the meds are kicking up my heart beat just walking.)

I  have always had a wide range of emotions.  I feel things strongly.  When I get excited, I almost always talk louder and faster.  Some, who don’t know me, think that this means I am getting angry.  No, getting loud is not synonymous with anger.   I used to try to subdue it but then people would ask me what is wrong?

(I now embrace the excitement but try to be aware if someone is misinterpreting my voice raising.    This recently happened when we were having a discussion about women ministers.   This topic is near and dear to me.   I feel very strongly about it.  There was a time when someone’s disapproval  and lack of understanding of scriptural context would get under my skin.  Funny thing is then I didn’t say anything.     Now I recognize the responsibility to speak up –   to educate – to point out that God’s Word does not contradict. I am not mad at the person for being misguided.)   Ahh a topic for another day.

So a few days ago my Dr. put me on a steroid to bring my sed rate down from a much elevated level.    I was warned by many that it messes with your emotions.  Even knowing that did not prepare me for Godzilla.

I have reminded myself that I am a child of God.    I reminded myself that I do have the fruit of the Spirit operating in my life.   Knowing that I am devoted to God and it is my desire to follow Him – I quoted the scripture “out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.”  (Matthew 12:34)  

I pray  — Oh God break my heart for what breaks Yours.  Help me operate in the compassion that comes from You.  Help my words be kind.  Help me build up.  God, I NEED YOU to be kind through me….”

I also cleared my schedule today – a rarity for me.  I told my husband this would be a really good day for him to use the church office.  I was not doing people today.  I love people and that is why I was not going to leave the house.

I asked God what I should do.  How was I going to get through the next 11 days – til my follow up appointment.  Starting tomorrow I cannot clear my schedule.  Come Thursday I leave with a large group of women (that I love dearly) for a 2 1/2 day retreat.  Sitting there with God this morning, that scared me.

Weird as it sounds, I felt impressed to get on facebook.  I was thinking – ok I can distract my emotions with that for awhile.  First thing I saw, upon scrolling, was a song a friend had posted.  I remembered that song from long ago.  I listened to it and it was as if God was all over that song.  I thanked my friend and got offline.   I sat down at the piano and began to play the song – over and over and over.

 

 

I don’t know how the next 11 days will go.  How often will I need to apologize?   I don’t know if I will pass the stress test.   I don’t know what is ahead health wise after my follow up appointment.

What I do know is that God loves me.  God loves you.  His grace is enough.  In my weakness He has proven Himself strong EVERY SINGLE TIME.

If you see me, yes, I could use a hug.  Yes,  I will need grace.   Yes, I really am trying to keep Godzilla buried.   I apologize ahead of time and will do it again later as needed.  Please be understanding and please pray for my husband!!

Honey, I know you will be reading this.  I am soo glad that you are going through this with me.  I know your heart.

til next time

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March 25, 2019 Posted by | just thinking about stuff, living in a fish bowl, Pastor's wife, relationships, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments