T-shirt, New Car, and Publisher’s Clearing House

Is it biblical to want God to prove to me that he loves me?   I know God loves me.  At least, I believe he loves me.  So why is my heart seemingly unmoved by that reality sometimes?  It feels wrong to admit that hearing “God loves you,” does not always make me feel anything.   If I really know and believe God loves me, why do I want more?  Why am I longing for something else?  I think maybe I believe he loves me, but I don’t KNOW he loves me.  But I think he wants me to know.   He meant for his love to be personal.  He does not dole out his love like confetti on New Year’s Eve – falling from the sky landing a little bit on everyone.  More accurately, his love is doled out like a publisher’s clearing house prize.  He comes to your door and individually gives you the life-changing prize.   I have opened the door and accepted the prize, but there is still some wrestle.   Jesus has proven his love for US.  The publisher’s clearing house prize was that he sent his son to earth, and that prize is offered to every person who walks the planet.  Jesus walked the earth and showed us how to live.  He faced all the trials that we face and walked through them in total victory by remaining dependent on his Father.  When the time came, Jesus walked to the place that he would be executed.  He allowed people to treat him horribly and ultimately, he left the physical body that he had been in for 33 years by dying.  He died to satisfy the righteous wrath of God.  God has every right to be mad at all of us for the bad choices we have made.  Thankfully, instead of acting on this right, God sent a part of himself to earth to absorb the wrath that is due to us.   So God HAS proven his love for US.  Why is that not enough sometimes?  I think the difference comes with the words[…]

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8 Seconds of Being Like Jesus

Is it possible to act like Jesus without becoming like him?  Can we behave well, but not have the substance behind it?  I think so.  I think I’ve done it for a long time.  I know the right things to say and do, but my heart is not always in the right place when I say or do them.  Am I alone here?   If the point of walking this planet is to become more and more like Jesus, how does that actually happen?  We can study Jesus’ life and try to model our lives around him and ask ourselves, “What would Jesus do?”  But even if we start acting like Jesus, does that mean we are really becoming like him?   Have you ever noticed that the more you hang out with a friend, the more alike you become?  You tend to gesture similarly or laugh similarly and even think similarly.  I have caught myself laughing with a friend and been struck by how similar our laughs sound.  But then I might take note of my laugh with a different friend, and it sounds a little different.  Or maybe we pick up on little phrases that a friend says, and they stick with us.  We tend to become more and more like the ones we spend time with.   God even warned us about who we choose to spend time with:  “Bad company corrupts good character” (1 Cor. 15:33).   Becoming more like Jesus can only happen by spending more time with Him, by being in relationship with him.  I can do and say things the way Jesus would, but what if I am like a Pharisee?  What if the outside looks good while the inside is rotting and decaying? (Matthew 23:27).   I can say to my pregnant friend, “I am so happy for you,” because that’s what Jesus would say.  But do I mean it?   A couple weeks ago, I had a friend announce she was pregnant and my first reaction (outwardly) was extreme excitement.  I jumped off the couch and hugged her (and I’m not[…]

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Deep

(I wrote this on paper 3 weeks ago, but did not get a chance to type it out) I am sitting here ready to board an airplane.  My husband and kids are at home.  I am traveling solo, so I have a little “quiet” time, and I am reflecting on this verse:   “Yet I am always with you; You hold me by my right hand.  You guide me with your counsel, and afterward you will take me into glory.  Whom have I in heaven but you?  And the earth has nothing I desire besides you.  My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever” (Psalm 73:23-26).   I am not afraid of flying.  I am pretty sure I have boarded an airplane every year (sometimes several times a year) since 1980.  Let’s just say, I have been on a lot of airplanes.   Now that I am a wife and a mom, if I fly without my husband and kids, flying feels a lot more vulnerable than it did as a kid.  I am still not afraid of flying, but I have found a tiny fear of dying, and for some irrational reason, getting on an airplane feels like walking into a potentially life-threatening scenario.  It is completely irrational.  I know that.  I know that the statistics point to the fact that I have a greater likelihood of dying in a car crash than an airplane crash.  I do not think about dying every time I get in a car – probably because I do that more often.  Let’s just call the fear irrational and move on.  This blog post really is not about flying, it is about dying.   Due to the fact that I am traveling alone and I soon have to get some tests done to see if I might have to battle the scary “C” word (cancer), I have been doing a lot of pondering about how I feel toward God if “all the days ordained for me (that were) written in his book before[…]

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Trust

  Have you ever opened a clam shell and found a pearl inside?  I haven’t, but I imagine it is quite the experience as you open this rather ugly-looking shell in hopes that something beautiful and valuable is nestled inside. Did you know that pearls are formed as “a defense mechanism against a potentially threatening irritant such as a parasite inside the shell, or an attack from outside.” (thank you, Wikipedia)  Isn’t that what faith in God’s truth is:  a defense mechanism against a potentially threatening irritant or attack (Satan)?  Faith is called the “shield” because it blocks and defends against the blows the enemy dishes that are meant to take us out (Ephesians 6).   Well-meaning christians sometimes take the time to offer their shields when ours are looking a little tattered and dented.  I am afraid, though, that so much of the things we christians say to each other (christianese) are like clam shells.  The beauty and the prizes are being handed out left and right, but unless you are willing to pry the thing open to find the hidden gem, what you have been given is useless and even kinda ugly.   I metaphorically opened a clam shell this week and found a treasure far more valuable than any pearl.  I had a clam shell handed to me this week that really set me free regarding how to handle unmet desires.  Initially, the truth that was shared was a little irritating and felt like the “christian thing” to say until God opened my eyes to see the pearl hidden inside.   I shared with a dear, Jesus-following woman about my desire for a child.  I gave her insight into the depth of this desire.   After sharing, she asked me, “Do you trust the Father?”   Not wanting to answer too quickly (and trying to decide in my mind if I really did), I answered, “Yes, I do.”  And I meant it will all my heart.  So I sat and waited, hoping that she would say the thing that finally helped me cross this mountain to where[…]

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Honesty and Understanding

Trying to put into words what the heart is feeling is challenging.  Every time that I sit down to pour my heart into a blog, I expect it to go quickly.  I have already given so much thought to the subject, so I expect that I will be able to easily put those thoughts into words.  Unfortunately, that is not often the case.  It usually takes a few hours (5 hours today) before I am ready to hit “publish” on a rather short blog.   After I have written my thoughts, I go back and re-read the words, and I find myself trying very hard to imagine how someone will feel reading these words.  I want to be certain that I am clear, and I do not want my heart to be misunderstood.   So I read and re-read what I have written, making changes in hopes that it is engaging and has a good point.  I wonder who will read my words and what impact they will have.  I pray it will be worth your time to read and will have a positive impact in you and your world.   Sometimes I do wonder how God can use these blogs, but then I remember that he is the Truth-teller and the Master Gardener.  He grabs truth where ever He sees it and he plants it into our lives in order to produce life.   He takes what is offered and makes the most possible “life” come from it.  Every year I am completely amazed that food I can eat comes from me taking an afternoon to put tiny seeds into the dirt and manure of my garden.  I am equally amazed that what grows up out of my manure (my sin, junk and dysfunction) can offer energy and strength to anyone else.  I think I still wonder about whether this whole writing thing is a calling from God…   Somewhere along the way, I have come to grips with the fact that I like to write.  I really have not always enjoyed writing.  As I have gotten older and[…]

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Welcome to unwaveringhope.com!  I am so glad you are here. This space was created when my life story was not following the path I expected.  For years, infertility was the main topic of my wrestle.  These days, I find myself sorting through the mental chaos of mothering, wife-ing, friend-ing, teacher-ing, daughter-ing and what-is-my-life-purpose-ing.  As I try to steady my thoughts and park them in a healthy place, God has made one thing clear:  maintaining hope in Him is the key. Check out my blog for a window into my story.

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