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

God – the giver of joy

My thoughts turn to joy yet again tonight.

I am grateful that joy is not dependent on things going as planned, things working out, or even whether or not I “feel” joy. Joy comes from a decision I make that I will choose joy. I will trust in God who is greater than whatever is going on. I will stay in hope. Hope that says God will turn this, whatever this is, around for my good – for my kid’s good. (Romans 8:28)

As another  day comes to a close, my thoughts go to those who have faced disappointment and/or pain recently.  Some days are just plain hard.  Still in the midst of every day,  God is still God and He is good. We can still choose joy.

In fact, choosing joy in the midst of difficulty is one of the most powerful things you can do. Choosing to hold on to God when life takes a turn that you didn’t see coming or when that mountain looms largely in front of you is in fact recognizing that God is indeed the giver of joy.

“Do not be grieved, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.”Nehemiah 8:10

Remember that in choosing joy, you also choose to spend time with the Father.

“You will make known to me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; In Your right hand there are pleasures forever.” Psalm 16:11

Lacking joy?  take a look at how much time you are spending in His presence — laying down the distractions and just being with Him.

“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” Romans 15:13

selah,

til next time

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February 13, 2018 Posted by | just thinking about stuff, ministry, pastor, spiritual reflections, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

rainbow

It seems that some people are set on rewriting history. The problem is we do not have a delete button or a edit button on history. It is what it is. We can’t change the past but we can learn from it.

I am grateful that God tells us today is the day of salvation. (2 Cor 6:1-3) I need Him today to save me – To save me from myself, from negative thoughts, from people who would do me harm, from the enemy of my soul who would try to destroy…. I need God.


I love that God gives us signs. When God set the rainbow in the sky, it was a sign of His promise to never flood the earth again. I have seen pictures of the Ark that was built according to God’s specifications. I am sure the rainbow meant more to those who witnessed the flood, but for me, the rainbow is always a sign of hope.

gen 9 13

We have hope!

“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” Romans 15:13 NIV

til next time

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December 5, 2017 Posted by | ministry, Pastor's wife, spiritual reflections, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

whatever

TODAY!!!
Whatever comes my way today – God is with me.

Nothing comes as a surprise to Him.

He calls me to trust Him – to let my faith arise.

battle

“By faith—by believing God—we know that the world and the stars—in fact, all things—were made at God’s command; and that they were all made from things that can’t be seen. ” Hebrews 11:3 (TLB)

After all, God created the heavens and the earth, He holds it all together, He has me engraved on the palm of His hand. AND that battle I am in, well, I won’t forget that it is His battle and I are His. (Gen 1:1, Col 1:17, Isaiah 49:16, 2 Chron 20:15, Psalm 110:3)

Whatever it is that is coming at us – God is greater!

Say this with me:

–That person that is trying to make my life difficult — God says that Vengeance is His – He will repay. (Romans 12:19)

–The health issues that I face — God says to trust Him. He is my healer and His grace is sufficient.” (Proverbs 3:5-6, Exodus 15:26, 2 Cor 12:9)

–That job related issue that is bringing me stress – God says to cast my cares on Him. (1 Peter 5:7)

–That thing that is trying to bring anxiety – God says His comforts gives me renewed hope. (Psalm 94:19)

—-When my paycheck is reduced, I trust God — God says He is my provider. I will lack no good thing. (Psalm 34:10)

“Worship the Lord with gladness.
Come before him, singing with joy.

Acknowledge that the Lord is God!
He made us, and we are his.
We are his people, the sheep of his pasture.

Enter his gates with thanksgiving;
go into his courts with praise.
Give thanks to him and praise his name.”
Psalm 100:2-4 (NLT)

til next time

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November 21, 2017 Posted by | just thinking about stuff, Pastor's wife, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

trouble – peace?

I scrolled facebook this afternoon and once again noticed that there many who are facing some pretty big issues. Sadly there are those who leave God out of the solution.

When my peace is lacking, I can trace it back to a lack of rejoicing on my part, or my gentleness has been replaced with harshness, or I am entertaining worry, or I am ungrateful at that moment or I probably haven’t prayed about it, or I have allowed my thoughts to become negative. Sometimes all of the above are evident. All of these things do seem to go together.

“Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! 5 Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. 6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. 8 Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.” Philippians 4:4-8 (NIV)

Want peace? God’s Word gives us instructions.

 

phil 4 4 7

Selah,

til next time

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October 3, 2017 Posted by | life lessons, ministry, pastor, Pastor's wife, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

grace, mercy, love – i need these!

Mercy, grace, and love.   I desperately need these in my life.  I am grateful that God gives them to me.

My husband often says, “Grace is when God gives us what we don’t deserve. Mercy is when God doesn’t give us what we do deserve.”

 

“God is sheer mercy and grace;

not easily angered, he’s rich in love…..

He doesn’t treat us as our sins deserve,

nor pay us back in full for our wrongs….

God’s love, though, is ever and always,

eternally present to all who fear him,…..” portions of  Psalm 103:8-14 The Message.

 

Go ahead and read the whole passage.  It is a great thing to meditate on.

 

Love – Trusting God’s love when my circumstances don’t make sense, when life seems to be out of control, when my heart is breaking, when the road ahead looks rough, when the urge to quit is strong, – trusting in His love calms my fears, increases my joy, renews my hope and strengthens my faith.

Trusting in His love helps me walk in obedience when my flesh wants its own way. Knowing He knows all about me, nothing is secret from Him (“He knows us inside and out,”) and still He loves me – that right there is enough for me to trust Him to work things out in ways that I may not even begin to comprehend.

God loves you! His mercy and grace are for you!

Mercy, grace, and love – thank you God!

til next time

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May 16, 2017 Posted by | ministry, pastor, Pastor's wife, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

permission to grieve

I will start off with acknowledging that in the realm of eternity, this is minor.  Things could have been soooo much worse.  Yet in order to move forward,  I needed to face  this new reality.  In doing so, I gave myself  permission to grieve.

For almost three years I have not felt well.  It has been one thing after another and some unanswered questions along the way.

Friday I went to my family doctor, explained that I was so very tired of hurting, and asked him if he thought it was related to my uterus.  (There are some issues going on with it.)  Could it be my appendix?  Although the majority of  pain is on my left side.

He sent me over for a CT scan with dye. For breakfast –   a barium smoothie.  He had me to wait at the hospital (with the IV in my arm) for the results.  Oh, it could have been so much worse.

Good news – no infection, no perforation,  and no blockage.  I do have diverticular disease.   My large intestine is filled with small and medium pockets.   It explains the random bleeding and the pain.

My doctor explained to me that there are two rules of thought.  One is to avoid nuts and seeds.  The other thought is that it makes no real difference.  My doctor is of the first opinion and he recommended that I abstain for all nuts, seeds, popcorn…   I have numerous pockets and with their size, it just isn’t worth the risk.  I am already having pain and some bleeding.  He is hopeful that diet and extra strength Tylenol  will quiet things down.

My sister and her family were coming for the weekend.  A house full of people, two guinea pigs, a dog, our  cat and lots of Christmas celebrations all kept my mind occupied.  What a wonderful blessing from God.

Today I gave myself permission to grieve — I love popcorn – it is common for me to have popcorn 2 – 5 times a week.  My favorite candy bar is salted nut roll with Snickers following close behind.  Pecans, cashews, peanuts, peanut m & m’s, caramel corn, buster bar, turtle blizzard, granola, peanut brittle, cashew chicken, sesame chicken, poppy seeds, ….. the list goes on.

I remind myself that God is the healer.  Just today a friend of mine was released from the hospital.  Last night things did not look good.  Today she is home recovering.  Yes, I know God heals.  I also know that He expects us to use our brain and not be presumptuous.

So I will follow my doctor’s orders.

There is an appointed time for everything. And there is a time for every event under heaven— ……………A time to weep and a time to laugh;
A time to mourn and a time to dance”  Ecclesiastes 3:1 & 4

The time of grieving is over.  It is time to laugh and dance.  God’s grace is enough!

Strength and dignity are her clothing,
And she smiles at the future.” Proverbs 31:25

More importantly, I will smile at the future.   My hope is in God and He does not change.

(If you have diverticular disease, diverticulitis, diverticulosis  I would love to hear from you.  What do you find helps?  How are you handling it?)

May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”  Romans 15:13

til next time

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December 27, 2016 Posted by | living in a fish bowl, Pastor's wife | , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

super moon

Did you take a moment to look at the super moon awhile back? Maybe you even took a picture? I did. Sadly, it did not capture the beauty. Yet the source of the beauty wasn’t the moon.

If it weren’t for the sun, the moon would be dark. What we see is a reflection of the sun’s rays bouncing off of the moon.

When people look at us, are they seeing the light of Christ?

 

For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of God’s glory displayed in the face of Christ.” 2 Corinthians 4:6 (NIV)

 

In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.” Matthew 5:16 (NIV)

 

December is here and with it can come the stress of getting the shopping, decorating, and baking done. Then there is the calendar that is already full. For some, adding school programs, work parties, family gatherings to an already stretched calendar is a potential recipe for added stress.

 

The other extreme is also out there. I was talking with a lady who shared with me that the holiday season is the worst time of year for her. Loneliness and sadness are nipping at her heels. Her calendar is too open.

 

Whatever the reason may be, if you are feeling overwhelmed this December, I encourage you to take a few moments (right now would be good) and talk with God. Cast your cares on Him, lay down your expectations at His feet, and allow His peace, love and joy to fill you again.

 

Now, may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you will overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. (Romans 15:13)

 

btw – I want to be a ‘super moon’!  Reflecting brightly the light of Christ!!

til next time

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December 2, 2016 Posted by | ministry, pastor, Pastor's wife, spiritual reflections, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

squinting

The windshield wipers on my car need to be replaced. I find myself squinting as I try to see through the raindrops. This reminds me of 1 Corinthians 13: 12-13.

“We don’t yet see things clearly. We’re squinting in a fog, peering through a mist. But it won’t be long before the weather clears and the sun shines bright! We’ll see it all then, see it all as clearly as God sees us, knowing him directly just as he knows us!

But for right now, until that completeness, we have three things to do to lead us toward that consummation: Trust steadily in God, hope unswervingly, love extravagantly. And the best of the three is love.” (MSG)

Only God sees all that is going on. For now we see only pieces.   Oh what a day that will be when we see Jesus. Just the thought of it makes me break out into song.

“It will be worth it all, when we see Jesus; Life’s trials will seem so small, when we see Christ; One glimpse of His dear face, all sorrow will erase, So bravely run the race til we see Christ.”

But for now: let us trust steadily in God, hope unswervingly, and love extravagantly.

(The Message Bible uses trust, many other translations use faith. Trust is our faith in action.)

With your whole heart trust God (Proverbs 3:5)

Be a prisoner of hope (Zech 9:12)

How does your love walk compare with 1 Cor 13?

We all have room for growth.

til next time

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November 3, 2016 Posted by | ministry, pastor, Pastor's wife, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

overflow with hope?

“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” Romans 15:13 (NIV)

Do you want to be that someone that overflows with hope? Yes, you can be that person. We serve the Living God – who is the God of hope. He pours His joy and peace into us as we trust in Him.

Trust in Him – recognize that you will face situations where this will be tested. In those moments you can choose to depend on your own strength and abilities or you can depend on God.

When you feel life dragging you down, choose to love, trust and depend on God.  Choose to not give in to fear or worry.  God is greater!!

Say this with me: I trust You God! You are greater than whatever I am facing. (1 John 4:4) You are my shield. (Psalm 3:3) You will sustain me. (Psalm 55:22) My hope is in You! (1Peter 1:21) I trust You God!!

He is at work and will work all things out for our good. (Romans 8:28)

When we walk through our days trusting in God, we will indeed overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. His joy and peace will be ours.

 

“Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life.” Phil 4:6-7 The Message

Trusting in Him I know I can make it,

til next time

 

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July 29, 2016 Posted by | ministry, pastor, Pastor's wife, spiritual reflections, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment