That’s When He Blessed Me!

Neal Roberson sings a song entitled “That’s When You Blessed Me” that always seems to come along at just the right time – it always ministers to me! He says that when we give things over to the Lord, that’s when He blesses us. When I examine my life, I can attest to this. For me, it has been somewhat of a power struggle to turn things over to the Lord (as if my solution is the better one! – HA!). But, I’m learning – when I release my cares to Him, He will take care of them. Let me say it this way – when I submit to His will – then He moves in my situations. He is a friend that sticks closer than a brother/sister/loved one. His will is perfect! And it’s when I move out of the way, He does the seemingly impossible.

Over my past few blog entries, I was in a rough spot. But, because I gave things BACK to the Lord, (I realized that I really couldn’t fix it – and my attempts were just making a messy situation worse), He moved. And, He did so quickly. I’ve seen the hand of the enemy and I’m looking at things with new eyes. Not from the valley but from the high view and perspective of Heaven.

It is good to give thanks to the Lord. So, I thank Him and I thank you – your prayers petitioned Heaven on my behalf. God heard. God moved. To God be the glory!

Love,
Sanya

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Life is Worth the Living!

It’s Friday! I’m feeling pretty good about life right now. Not too much about my situation has changed, but I am still encouraged. God is handling everything concerning me. So, I can lift up from the issues that I have and simply live. Life is worth the living.

I flew home last night. My flight was delayed, then my valet (planeside luggage) was misplaced when I got to my home airport. And to top it all off, when I got ready to pay for parking with the automated machine such that I would not have to wait at the cashier line, my ticket would not work. Indeed, God had worked a wonder with me in Boston, and my adversary was not pleased. My response was one of faith. I even began laughing because I could see the enemy’s hand.

Life is worth the living. So, on this Friday, I will press forward in the plans that God has for me. I will not give up neither give in. Life if worth the living!!

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From the 26th Floor…

I am optimistic today. I am a recipient of new mercies from God. Grace is abounding in my life. As I looked at the view from my hotel room this morning, I was inspired. I am in Boston, on the 26th floor. From this vantage point, I can see for miles. It got me to thinking. God has a perspective of our lives in which we cannot imagine. He knows everything about us – and knowing all of this, He still cares for us. While I may have been low down, deep in the valley only able to see a few paces in front of me, God looks over the expanse and sees everything there is to see concerning me. He can see for miles – literally and figuratively. So, there is no need for me to worry about things that I can’t see – I just need to rest in the assurance that God is for me and He is with me. He said that He would never leave me nor forsake me. So, I’m leaning and depending on Him alone. I surrender the urge to “control” my circumstances. Instead now, I recognize and confess that I cannot control these things. I’ve had the wrong focus. Looking out the window from here suggests to me to keep my eye on the real goal – to keep my focus Heavenward. If I stay entrenched and focused on one street or one block, (ie one situation or circumstance) I will miss seeing the majestic view of God’s plan for my life. Life is indeed worth the living with my hope properly placed in God.

It’s funny. I really didn’t want to make this trip to Boston. But, in being here, I have gained more strength for the journey. I will continue to press forward. I am making new strides and I am connected to my Father in a new way.

And, if you are wondering, no, I do not have tickets for the world series. I’m a few grand short! Yes, tickets are really going for thousands. But this trip has been a spiritual homerun!

Yours and His,
Sanya

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My Heart Condition


I’m stressed and my body is beginning to show signs of the pressure. I noticed that I’ve been having consistent headaches – abnormal headaches. I decided to take my blood pressure. Let’s just say I was way out of bounds – out of normal limits. That’s a clear indication that change is needed. Hypertension runs in my family.

I started back on an exercise routine. Three times a week. That’s about all that I can realistically do. For months now, my gym fee has been little more than a non-tax deductible, charitable donation. I was not being a good steward of my funds nor taking good care of my body.

Now, I’m dealing with the consequences and my body has sent out a cautionary yellow flag. I yield. And, in doing so, I’ve been doing some soul searching. Well, what I mean is that I’ve sat down with God to have a few conversations. You remember that I mentioned this in my post entitled Weeds! In doing so, I recognize that I have a heart condition. My heart, much to my surprise, is not where it should be with God.

How do I know? Upon spending some time reading some the Bible and some other Christian materials, I have been reawakened to the fact that what is in my heart will fly out of my mouth – and that is not always a good thing. A change is required. I have to have the ambassador’s approach to my life.

God calls us to surrender our own lives – lay down our own will and desires –to pick up His and be effective ambassadors of His kingdom. There have been many times lately when I was an ambassador of my own kingdom and not His Kingdom. It was God’s grace and mercy that has led me back to being His ambassador. And, it’s that same grace and mercy that is prompting this heart examination. I pray that as the spirit leads, you too will examine your heart, to ensure that you are the ambassador of HIS kingdom. Ah! Refreshing water for my trip through the valley. (see the Though the Valley post)

An examination of our heart will surely relieve tension brought about by the “stuff” of life. I’m taking steps to improve the condition of my heart. I will exercise it spiritually by practicing God-glorifying things and keeping my motives pure. I will keep in synch with the Spirit to make sure that I am doing God’s will and using each opportunity provided as ministry – especially those opportunities that would seek to frustrate me. That takes the focus off of my kingdom and onto His kingdom. I am determined to get my heart in tip- top condition with the aid of the Spirit dwelling within. Thanks be to God for this wonderful opportunity. And now that I think of it, I thank Him as well for the valley experience – I already feel stronger than I was coming in.

Thank you for your prayers. Keep praying!

Sanya

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Through the Valley

I struggled and strained against this. It’s not exactly how I wanted to live out this period of my life. I want to do fun and exciting things. But, alas, I submit to the will of God. I am in the valley. I tried for a period of time to pretend that I was not here. I made my surroundings seem “normal.” But, we all know, there is nothing normal about a valley situation. That’s why it’s a valley. It demands a response. For me, this valley demands a response of faith. I’m being tested.

I never was one for testing. I don’t like test – especially the standardized test like the SAT and GMAT. However, they are requirements for the degrees that I wanted and now have. And so is this test. The difference – my instructor and proctor for the test is the One and Only Living God. And this test, when passed, will launch me into my next season. The get out of the valley, this test is a prerequisite.

The thing about this test that I detest the most is that it is an uphill battle. I’ve got to climb to get out the valley and I’m also faced with opposition. So, I have to fight (on my knees in prayer). I’m faced with faceless villians attacking me – you know “that kind.” And, I’m also faced with the physical manifestations of opposition through people being used by “that kind.” I’ve run out of options within myself – as God knew that I would. And, know, my faith MUST come in.

I’m in a spiritual fight of faith. I pray that as you read this post that you will partner with me in prayer that I stand strong on my faith and that my faith in God will increase. Afterall, all things are possible to them that believe. I believe that God is going to work this situation out. And, I know that however He works it, I’ll be satisfied with the end result.

Remember me in prayer,

Sanya

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3,2,1 Blast Off!

This is a long post – but, I think (of course) that it’s worth the read…

On July 26, 2005, I was in Orlando Florida on a business trip. This was also the day for the NASA launch of the space shuttle Discovery. The talk all morning long was on the pending launch. As time drew near, employees of the facility grew increasingly excited and turned up their radios to share the news of the pending countdown. The plan was that ten-minutes before the launch, everyone interested would go outside and look towards the sky for when the shuttle would fly past us. I too was excited. I’d never seen a space shuttle blast off in person. I’d only experienced it on television. Now that I have, there is nothing like experiencing it first hand. It got me to thinking about my own spirituality and that of all professing believers.

As professing believers, do we share the good news? Do we live broadcast lives or do we keep the greatest gift to ourselves because we are ashamed. It’s interesting, even after tragedy in 2003, the NASA space program went forward. People rallied around the new launch and the shuttle blasted off. But, what happens to you and I when we have a disaster or tragedy? We try to sweep it under the rug and hope that either nobody knows or that everyone will quickly forget about it. We do not always recognize that our situation is an opportunity to share the good news. Our tests give us the basis for our testimony. Even when we initially fail, upon the moment of success we can recount how good God has been and share what His relationship means to us. We always want to share at revival time but what about the other 51 weeks of the year? What keeps us from sharing the good news? Jesus said in Matthew 28 :19 “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.” We’ve been commanded to share the good news. And we don’t have any reason not too. We don’t have any reason to be afraid because verse 20 follows up and says “Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, [even] unto the end of the world. Amen.” So, that lets us know that when we go to share, we have been given instructions about what to do and most importantly, Jesus says that He will be with us always which literally means “all the way” or you can also look at it as meaning “perpetually, incessantly, invariably, at any and every time.” So, there’s no need to fear.

Perhaps the main reason that we don’t share the good news like we should is that we have gotten altogether too casual in our walk with God. We only “tune in” when something is going on. I think back again to the shuttle launch. On an ordinary day, employees would not have their radios tuned in and would not be talking over cubicle walls and hanging out at the copier conversing about whether or not the launch would be scrubbed or go forward. No, on a normal day, they would stick to their normal routine – absent the radio piping in information about the activities of NASA. And, perhaps that’s the way we approach our relationship with God. As long as everything is routine, we do not perceive any special need to “tune in”, but if something is going on out of the ordinary, that’s when we turn into God’s best friend, calling on Him, begging Him, and pleading with Him. He is the news at the copiers of our lives. He is the one that gets the attention. And, it makes me wonder – is that fair to God? Do you really think He only wants to hear from you when you need something? Do you only want to hear from that relative only when they need something? When we accept Christ, we become part of God’s family. If we had to stand up and introduce our brother Jesus, what would we say? What adoration could we heap on Him? Would we have to use a shovel or a spoon?

And, perhaps you know enough about Him that you could use a shovel but at some point, we get distracted in the pace of life. We lose time and lose our zeal for God. The great thing about God is that we can always get recharged just for the asking. In prayer, we get recharged. In study of the Holy Scriptures we get recharged. In fellowship with strong believers, we get recharged. In worship, we get recharged. And, when we get recharged, we need to go out and share our spiritual energy with those who’ve lost the way or have yet to find it. We have a commandment – are we operating under it?

As we go out to share the good news – let us do so with great enthusiasm that flows from our heart and spirit. The employees had great enthusiasm as we watched that shuttle ascend into outer space. We watched and we cheered. We were amazed at what we saw and the evidence of the experience lingered in the form of an excited glow throughout the remainder of the work day. No one had done anything but watch. NASA and its multitude of experts by the grace of God did the work that day. And, the same holds true everyday for us as professing believers. We have not done anything but watch either. Through our spiritual eyes, we journey back thousands of years ago. We have watched Jesus come to Earth, dwell here, teach here, leave instructions for how to live here, we watched him die here and rise here. So, what are we doing while we’re here? We should be sharing the good news, watching for His return and cheering for the souls that are being added to the Kingdom. Our salvation was free. We can at least do as He commands.

What would happen if we do more than accept Christ but get on the launch pad of His desires for us? We would blast off into a spirit-realm that literally touches the Heavenlies. I don’t know about you, but that sounds good to me! 3…2…1…I’m blasting off!

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Weeds!

I’ve got weeds y’all. Anyone that knows me will tell you that I put a lot of time and effort into maintaining a nice green lush lawn. I got that from my Dad. If you make the investment in a house, you should also make an investment in the yard. It “frames” the house.

Well, where I live, we are experiencing an “exceptional drought.” Apparently that’s the worst category. Pray for rain! Because of the drought and my busy travel schedule, the lawn is parched. My grass is no longer nice, green and lush. In fact, in some spots, the lawn is bare. The grass died due to the harsh conditions – extreme heat – no nourishing and cooling rain. And now, I see weeds encroaching in my grass!

It got me thinking. Could it be that my spiritual life is being played out in my yard?

There are cycles in my life that I have to guard against. I can be red-hot for God or I can be a lazy Christian and sometimes I fall somewhere in between. Don’t gasp. I’m not alone. My “status” in this area all depends on how much quiet time I spend alone with God.

Lately, I’ve been slack. I’ve put several other “important” and well-intentioned things before my devotional time with God. Don’t get me wrong. I’m still praying and studying. But, I’m talking about real quiet time – where I am still enough – long enough to hear my Father speak to me. Quiet time!

As a result of neglecting my quiet time, the “harsh” circumstances and conditions of my life have presented a drought-like situation for my soul. I need the nourishing rain of a long conversation with my Father.

I’m going to seek after and pray for the rain in my spiritual life that the ground of my heart may be saturated with praise for God. I finally understand the saying “My soul thirsts for thee.” I know that grass – having a personal relationship with God – is the best defense against weeds. I’ve got weeds in my yard but I don’t want weeds in my soul.

I’m taking steps now to remedy my “scheduling” situation such that I will be a woman of God that pleases Him and that has an intimate relationship with Him – sans weeds!

Afterall, He comes first! But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. Matthew 6:33

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Desire Wisdom

I thank God for many things. Right now, at the forefront of my mind, I thank God for His WISDOM.

I just had a conversation where I was seeking guidance and direction. [sidebar – why do we ask the question when we already know the answer?] Anyway, knowing full well what I needed to be doing, I indulged my flesh a little. I complained. I questioned. I reasoned. I’m sure that God laughed at me.

I thank God for the ministry of Rick Renner in writing a daily devotional. Do you want to know what Renner wrote about today…wait for it…WISDOM.

James 1:5 says “If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.”

Essentially, James tells us that we can come directly to God for wisdom and He will give it to us, without severe reproach or criticism.

Renner says that when a person lacks wisdom, it nearly paralyzes him because he doesn’t know what to do. Well, I don’t want to live my life paralyzed due to lack of wisdom. When I recognized that God had directed me right back to the same answer that He’d given me before I engaged in my conversation, I knew what I needed to do AND I did it. I went to God for WISDOM. If you are seeking guidance and direction in ANYTHING, I pray that you will go boldly and confidently to God and ask Him for wisdom. He will give it to you freely – you can believe that!

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