My classroom called life…Kingdom lessons

My desire is to abide

Are you FREE? (Part I) July 4, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — charredsmore @ 7:50 pm

Freedom.

 

What does this word mean to you?  Many different meanings to many different people.  Ask the same question to people of different cultures, people of different lands, people facing different kinds of struggle…

 

I ask you, “What does freedom look like for your life?”  “Are you free?  Really free?”

 

Hmmmm…this is the type of question that you ponder.  Don’t answer right away.  I’m not talking about that Sunday school answer either.  The one you know I want to hear.  I am talking about getting real with yourself.  I’m not even talking about a collective type of freedom either.  Not the type we blanket over our country, community, church, or even family.  I’m talking, the up close and personal freedom for YOU. 

 

So, I ask again, “Are you free?”  Just think on that for a moment, or two or ten.  I know I need to do the same. 

 

Where do we find freedom?  What brings freedom?  Is it given to us?  Do we achieve it ourselves?  Is it lasting?  Do we maintain it?  Is there a cost?  Is it expensive?  Do we experience it daily?  Can we experience it every moment?  Are there different kinds of freedom?  Can you be in a situation that doesn’t really appear to have freedom written all over it, and still be free in your heart and spirit?  Can people who are oppressed be free?  Do some give the illusion of freedom, but really they are in a prison of their own mind or spirit?  Can anyone rob you of your freedom?  Can real freedom last?

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How do you measure a year?

Filed under: Uncategorized — charredsmore @ 7:21 pm

seasons

Last night, I reflected on this past year.  The ups, the downs, the total turn arounds.  God is good.  There have been so many things that have shifted for me…in my mind, my spirit, my heart, and even circumstances.  I am thankful.  As I reminisced and played back the memories…this song rang in my heart from the musical, “Rent”.

Seasons of Love

525,600 minutes, 525,000 moments so dear. 525,600 minutes – how do you measure,
measure a year? In daylights, in sunsets, in midnights, in cups of coffee. In
inches, in miles, in laughter, in strife. In 525,600 minutes – how do you
measure a year in the life?

 

 

 

 

 

How about love? How about love? How about love? Measure in love. Seasons of
love.

525,600 minutes! 525,000 journeys to plan. 525,600 minutes – how can you measure
the life of a woman or man?

In truths that she learned, or in times that he cried. In bridges he burned, or
the way that she died.

It’s time now to sing out, tho the story never ends let’s celebrate remember a year in the life of friends. Remember
the love! Remember the love! Remember
the love! Measure in love. Seasons of love!

Seasons of love.

 

 

 

 

9 Dresses

Filed under: Uncategorized — charredsmore @ 7:00 pm

bridesmaid dresses

 

In  May I was able to travel up north to be a part of Stacy’s wedding.  Stacy and I  met while on a summer project with Campus Crusade for Christ in 2002 in Boulder, CO and have remained good friends ever since.  I am so blessed by her relationship with Tim…in many ways. 

 

This was the 8th wedding I have had the privilege to be a bridesmaid in.  Not quite 27, like the movie, but eight.  It is a wonderful thing to have so many close friends that would ask me to witness their special day.  God creating a covenant between man and woman.  I love it!  I love seeing love displayed.  Not that mooshy kind of love you see in the movies either.  That’s not real.  Go on a couple romantic dates and end up in bed together.  That’s not real love.  Real love is sacrifice.  Real love is patient.  Real love respects.  Real love waits.  Real love places the other person first.  Real love is a CHOICE not a feeling.  Sure, there will be attraction, there will be sparks and maybe even some fireworks.  But, come on…what happens when you wake up next to this person after 1o years and you are no longer feeling all those butterflies and magic?  Yea, you choose into love. 

You “choose in” to this relationship that you committed to. 

Is it difficult? 

You bet. 

Is it probably the hardest relationship you will ever encounter? 

Absolutely. 

Is it worth it? 

I think so. 

Then again, who am I to answer, I am single.

 

I will wear my ninth bridesmaid dress this fall when my beautiful roommate Stacy gets married to her wonderful fiance, Jesse.  (I just realized I will have been in three consecutive weddings for my good friends/sister who share the name “Stacy” – interesting.)  Stacy and I have been roommates and best friends for about five years.  It’s crazy to think that I have had the same roommate for that long and in different states.  Oh, this friendship has been put together by God…I will have to write a seperate blog about that. 

 

Back  to my original thoughts on love…I am amazed at the orchestration of God in how He puts people together.  It is amazing to watch.  Have you ever seen Him bring two people together…two people that compliment each other so perfectly?  I have.  It’s fascinating. 

 

To those 8 (and soon to be 9) sisters that have asked me to stand and witness your marriage being established…I love you.  I am thankful for you.  I am standing with you in prayer, trusting that God will allow the places of intimacy between you and your husband grow and mature, as you grow in the love with the Lord.  I pray He is on display in your love.

 

LifeSkillz – Praying for Transformation

Filed under: Cairo Kids,Ministry Stuff,Youth — charredsmore @ 6:37 pm

transformation

 

As I shared bits and pieces of my testimony with the students, their eyes were wide and some of them had open mouths. 

 “Who is this girl you are talking about?”

 “Yea, I feel like I am talking about a different person…” 

During our LifeSkillz class that Coraviece and I are conducting in Mounds and Cairo, we have opportunity to teach the students about a lot of cool stuff.  I am amazed at how this has all worked out.  I mean, come on…I was about to meet with a group of teen girls this summer and do exactly that – teach them about positive decision making, myths of drug use, peer pressure, sex, STDs…and now I can actually get paid for it.  Praise Jesus!

 

God opened the door for me to share a little about some past experiences.  My only hope is that they learn from my terrible mistakes and make better ones.  Also, that they would see the glory of God in my life.  That He is the one that turned me around. 

 

After LifeSkillz, one of the gals was helping us unload our stuff at Cora’s house.  We got to chatting about quite a few things.  She asks us why we are so concerned about what the teens are doing. 

 

“Why are adults always giving advice, can’t we just learn from our OWN mistakes?”

 

 I began to share with her how I grew up in the church and yet didn’t understand who Jesus was and why he died on the cross and why that mattered in my life.  I told her that IF an older woman would have come into my life to share the truth about Christ, maybe I wouldn’t have made such poor decisions.  I told her with passion, how much I loved her and wanted to see her make good choices and not suffer the consequences that I faced as a teenager.  We talked about a lot of things and prayed before we left.  Overall, I am just in awe, watching God touch the lives of these teenagers. 

 

It is just beautiful. 

 

Please, continue to pray for these teenagers.