Wednesday, February 29, 2012

I am really moved lately...

the covenant of marriage i have entered into with my husband has more depth than i realize. there is so much in marriage that reflects the love of God with his Church and i am just beside myself. i am crying out for revelation, for these great depths to be opened up to my understanding, for me to know something greater of the heart of God towards us, His Bride.

i feel a love for her. there is a change in myself that i am noticing more and more lately. as i pick up on things that are harmful to the people of God, whether from persecution or from within the Body, things that cause division are breaking my heart in a different way than they have done in the past. in the past i have longed for quick justice to come on whoever was causing the harm. i wouldn't mind to be the one to administer justice and i didn't care very much if i was helpful or confronted the person/people in love.

now i am very concerned for the person/people that are causing harm. i feel a need to pray and think very carefully before i open my mouth, before i speak up. i want my motives to be right, i want to know i have the heart of God in what i am thinking and mostly, i want the humility of Jesus and teach-ability as i move forward knowing that i, also, only see in part. it's just so different to how i used to handle things of this nature.

going to the Living Light marriage conference this past weekend was just incredible. i believe in the power of God within us and that that is the true hope for change. we cannot change our marriages; we can change ourselves. Christ within us is our hope of glory. He is our hope for a glorious marriage. i really do long for a God-glorifying marriage. i believe for it as well, which is the key. this is about our faith and our faith really rests on what we think. our belief is all wrapped up in how we think and to change behavior, we have to get to the root of our behavior, our thoughts.

i feel so challenged and humbled by this and ready to change. and i am starting to see these little changes, which, in the scheme of my life, are a big deal! i can see that these ways i have changed that may seem 'little' were once all wrapped up in me believing the wrong thing about God, myself or Christianity! NO MORE STINKIN' THINKIN'! (sorry, i couldn't resist...)

honestly, as i poor over God's Word i ask for new revelation, i ask to be led into all truth knowing that Christ in me, Holy Spirit will illuminate His truth and bring it to life within my heart and mind. and as i am given to these truths, i will be changed. also, i am coming to realize that the intimacy i have been crying out for for so long, the more of God that i have been aching for, the cries from my heart to Him for his voice to be more real to me, his presence more near, it is happening in my life right now.

                          and i am so grateful and humbled by God's faithfulness to me.

i serve a God who hears and a God who speaks.

this may seem disconnected, but to me, it is all connected. i am seeing that GOD is truly the author and perfecter of my faith and i am so encouraged that he is allowing me to see some of these changes in myself that HE has brought about in my life. and He is so patient with me! so, so patient! even when we have to go back around the mountain again because i missed the lesson he wanted me to get the first time. God is producing these desires within me to love better, in my marriage, in the Church and in the world. i have not made these changes; it has never been a matter of will power that taught me how to love better but God himself within me.

                                                           He is my hope of glory!

Friday, February 17, 2012

i don't know what to do...

have you ever had those weeks where you feel aimless, more or less? you are where you know you are meant to be, you are with the people you know you are meant to be with and yet there is just a sudden confusion or dis-oriented sense that hits you like a train? i am in this place and it's a real challenge.

so far my response has been just asking God to keep my heart pure and to keep me focused on His beautiful face and love. i don't want to lose my thankful heart because of this strange time. i don't want to become embittered.

so, as i wade through this, i am open to all God wants to teach me. if i don't remain open in this then i will miss the lessons and God will have to bring me back here again because i missed the lessons. think of Israel wandering in the desert; they missed the lessons again and again. i don't want to be like the Israelite's.

i want an open heart; i want eyes to see and ears to hear what the Spirit is saying.

has anyone else experienced this recently, like, out of nowhere?

i think a tactic of the enemy here is to throw us off track, for us to panic. for us to just suddenly feel a lack of vision or knowledge of what we are doing,  we can become unproductive people. but we must keep seeking God, keep our eyes fixed, our hope always on the unseen.

if this is the hand of God doing this he is either re-directing something within our hearts or wanting to test our resolve in what we have already seen of his will; do we believe him, that he will do it? that He will keep his Word? His purposes must be accomplished in these times and we must be firm within ourselves to not entertain and believe doubt. who are we to question God?

this is just the process i am in, so, i may not have the theology down pat on what is going on. i sense a lack of understanding on my part as to why this is happening, i feel confused, but i want to trust my Maker. i want to go the wisest way and i do believe that
                                                                        HE is taking me the wisest way.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

"I want to keep company with you..."

some realizations of late are that i have not led a 'normal life' since the accident, which was 17 months ago now.

i was floored when i actually took the time to think about how much time had passed since august of 2010. i have not worked since then, was part of an internship last year, got married, bought a house, did a little bit of traveling, wrote songs here and there, started running again on and off but that's really about it. these realizations have been saddening to me, the fact that i really was down and out for quite a long time. 17 months, in my mind, as a 26 year old woman, is a long time.

what people may not realize is that a life altering accident is actually just that, life altering. i have not been the same since the accident. (don't worry, this post won't be depressing...i promise!)

the implications of being 'down and out' as i call it, are that i have only been semi-invested in all of life, if at all. i have only half- lived and there are reasons why i can honestly say this and it's not all that connected to unemployment, although that certainly has its challenges.

i have not been open to lots of things from friendships to participating on sunday mornings to learning how to cook to keeping to a regular laundry schedule. well, i have been open but unable to go after anything with my all; i have literally struggled in every single area of life. there have been plenty of sunday mornings where i have not wanted to go to Church at all, and for me, that's saying something. i won't get in to the depths of the depression and anxiety i have faced; just know that i went through the most trying time in my entire life after the accident and that's also saying something...i'm a cancer survivor and have been healed of disease. let's put it this way: i am no stranger to suffering.

God's grace is something i am no stranger to, either.

throughout this process, i have longed to have something to bring to God, but i have had nothing to bring; no talent, no accomplished to do lists, no deep and thriving friendships, no races run, no hours on the piano. nothing.

but my heart.

all i have had to bring to God has been my heart; my heart full of questions, full of pain, full of disappointments, full of dreams i have been afraid to dream.

even so, God took what i had to offer to him, a stripped down version, a broken and messy version of bethany belisa. He took my heart and did not let go.

my favorite thing about this season is that i get to say i kept company with God. that's a fancy way of saying we hung out...all the time. it is something i heard him whisper to me when my bones were broken and healing; i would hear him say, "i want to keep company with you, my dear." and He would. i knew He was right there and wasn't going anywhere. my body needed lots of rest and in this i truly learned what it is to be content in all things. this is the 'secret' paul said he learned; now i know it too;)

i am a former busy-body. God has saved me from myself. He took the accident and used it for good and accomplished many things in me. i am grateful for this season, even though it's been longer and harder than i imagined it would be. but how can we truly know something until we have gone through it ourselves?

"He changes times and seasons..." Daniel 2:21

bethany belisa