Clinton Door

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

I received an email today from a friend...she was asking how to encourage someone who is struggling with hearing God. This is what the Lord gave me and as always when pondering such a question, my faith was encouraged - He has a way of doing that, doesn't He?

God has been speaking to people since the beginning of time - there is Moses, David, Abraham, King Solomon, Paul, John, Peter, on and on....As believers, He speaks to each of us through his Holy Spirit. I believe He does whisper in our ear - sometimes loud - we must know the Word to understand what these whispers are. So the real question is: what are we filling our hearts and minds with? The world is inundating us with false hope and truths....if we are not filling ourselves with the Truth, we will become confused on what is right and what is not. Living life with a constant awareness of who He is, breathing His word and acknowledging His presence always guarantees hearing his voice.

He loves each of us with an everlasting love and I believe He is the "Hound of Heaven"....meaning he doesn't stop looking to feed us with direction, love and truth - He never leaves us nor forsakes us. God speaks to each of us differently because we are not like one another. It may be through a friend, it may be through music, it may be through a walk in the park.....All too often we expect to hear him through the burning bush or the wool thrown out to catch the dew, something dramatic.

I have heard God speak to different ways: some specific words: I love you with an everlasting love; I am with you, trust me; I have already paid your ransom and set you free, get up and walk in freedom. I believe He speaks to each of us but we can be too busy to hear, too hurt to listen, or we can be too stubborn living life out our own way.

Anger has a way of smothering out what is good for our souls.....and how do you reach the point of not being angry anymore? I have asked myself this question when I am going through the fire.....God's Word.....fellowship with other & prayer....easy answers, aren't they? But stepping into that can be challenging as our stubborn pride keeps us from walking forward. Satan just wants to destroy us by keeping us defeated!

The bottom line: He just wants our hearts....He wants us to keep our eyes on trust Him even when we can't see. It is hard sometimes....that is why we walk in faith....believing what we can't see:

God is who He says He is,
God can do what He says He can do,
I am who God says I am,
I can do all things through Christ,
God's word is active and alive in me.
Beth Moore

Your statutes are my heritage forever; they are the joy of my heart.
My heart is set on keeping your decrees to the very end
~ Psalm 119: 111-112 ~

Tuesday, June 23, 2009


Our heritage comes from the Lord..yes! But our earthly parents give and leave a heritage. That is how we learn who we are and what we are made of. As a believer, we trust our faith and integrity will show our commitment and love for Christ...which comes from spending time in the Word and prayer. Sometimes life can get too busy (Satan's greatest tool I might add) and we don't stop long enough to really sit before the Father. I am guilty of this....but the last two and a half weeks, I have had more time on my hands than I have seen in about six years. For those who are not aware, I am home recovering from surgery....doing pretty good, but taking longer than I anticipated. Notice the "i" part....with God, there are no secrets....just takes me a little while longer to figure it out.

This last Sunday was a very special day for all of us..well, most of us. We all have fathers (or we wouldn't be here). I have read a few comments about being thankful for dads and read one where their thoughts were my thoughts at one time: Father's Day is a difficult day for me. That took me back to many years past. I felt like that as well. My father died three days before my second birthday. I grew up not knowing him in a personal way by his physical presence, but my mother never let us forget who he was. Now, there were a lot of things going on around him that caused him anguish - He fought diligently for the rights of people to have the ability to vote, to attend the school of choice, take a bus, go to a restaurant, drink out of a water fountain ......regardless of their color. He was a man that stood on principle, believed all were created equal and he left a heritage that will never die. How do I know this heritage exists? I see this is my sons, Jake & Josh. I see that my father's heritage had indeed passed into their lives and impacted them in a way they cannot compromise.

These days, I love Father's Day. My sons have the greatest dad who is committed to loving them, encouraging them and living his life faithfully for Jesus Christ, hence another heritage:) But in my early years, I was sad and broken as I didn't have a father to give hugs to, thanks to or visit on this special day. God has done a great healing in my soul and I have been able to move past this pain. He taught me that He is my Father and everyday is Father's Day. Although my father wasn't here, in his own way I was loved. I was chosen. My Heavenly Father is always here. I am loved. I am chosen. The greatest gift my father gave me was his heritage. The greatest gift my Father gives me is His only Son, Jesus. I have freedom. I have forgiveness. I have eternal love. The chains are freedom not just belongs to me, but to my sons as well.

Deuteronomy 7:9 Know therefore that the LORD your God is God; he is the faithful God, keeping his covenant of love to a thousand generations of those who love him and keep his commands.

Monday, March 30, 2009

I am a looney bird...

So...somehow, I decided to follow myself! I think I may have crossed over from talking to myself to being mildly insane! No really, I did this by accident...not sure how to undo this but one thing is for sure..I will definitely know what I am thinking!! Oh just keeps getting better:)

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Broken People

We are all broken people, how we wear it looks different on each person. Jesus Christ came into the world as an innocent babe, lived his life for the glory of the Father and left this world broken in body. But God by his grace and mercy raised Jesus from the grave, perfect with the beauty of his nail-scarred hands as a reminder of his sacrifice for us. What will we do with this? How will we live out lives as a remembrance of his gift to us? Today, as I was praying - my heart cried out at my lack of acceptance of the brokeness of others, realizing that I am broken too. We are connected to each other and we share the broken body of Christ as brothers and sisters. Love each other with sincerity, do not hold grudges against one another unless we plan on holding one against ourselves. God sees us as beautiful concert of wholeness and glory. We belong to him through the blood of Jesus Christ.
~ Praise be to our Father and Lord ~

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Hong Kong and Friends

I must be in a "blogging mood". Two in one day....phenomenal:)

The Dean family is on my heart today. I love each one, Matt-April-Josh-Caleb-Luke, just as if they were my own "flesh & blood"....wait a minute, we are...we share the blood of Christ! YES!!

I am amazed at the hand of He is working in their lives....providing every piece of manna they will need as they move to Hong Kong. He has provided housing, He has given the boys excitement for their new home and new friends.....He is going before them, preparing the hearts of the students in Hong Kong....and even more than we can see with our own eyes and heart. That is just the way He I can trust He will calm our hearts that are weeping already, as we will miss their presence here.

I sit here and I see the faces of so many students who don't even know how their lives will never be the same as they are introduced to Jesus Christ! I sit here and see the faces of so many college students in this area who have met Jesus Christ through Grace Campus Ministries and their lives will never be the same again! What has been cultivated will go on from person to person because each one will reach one. That is how this ministry began...with a desire to live the Word, to breathe the Word, to give the Word to each person. So many students have gone, moved on to their careers, some in ministry - some in the work force.....and they all bear witness to the grace of Jesus Christ.

Thank you Matt, April, students and each person who has supported this ministry financially, spiritually and through their presence. Lives have been changed because of your obedience. Lives will continue to change because of your obedience.

My purpose is that they may be encouraged in heart and united in love, so that they may have the full riches of complete understanding, in order that they may know the mystery of God, namely, Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.
Colossians 2:2-3

The Grace and Aroma of Our Lord

Two weeks ago, I picked up the Saturday edition of the OaNow - When I read this article, my heart wept......and rejoiced at the same time. Wept for the family of Maria Sue; Rejoiced for the power God has in our life. We may become broken, be we are never unfixable. When we surrender to the Lord.....allowing him to fill us in our grief, our pain, our brokenness.....our lives will be richer and we will become the "aroma of grace."

Written by Walter Albritton ~
Methodist pastor who writes a weekly column in the Opelika-Auburn news

Recently, I read again about the accidental death of Maria Sue, the 5-year old daughter of Steven Curtis Chapman. That tragedy reminded me of a profound idea I had gleaned from an earlier story about this popular Christian singer. The idea was capsulated in the phrase, "The fragrance of the broken." The words came to Chapman during a walk in the woods. He had gone into the woods to pray, desperate for release from a drought in his soul. Pleading with God for a breakthrough, he gathered some rocks, stacked them into a make shift altar and began to pray. While praying he began to smell cedar, so strongly that it distracted him from praying. Opening his eyes he soon spotted a little cedar tree that he had snapped in half by stepping on it. The broken tree was the source of the smell that Chapman felt was sign from God. Quickly he wrote down the words, "The fragrance of the broken."

God does provide a "fragrance" that we may learn to cherish as we wrestle with our brokenness and that of our loved ones. Like the little cedar tree, it may not be easily recognizable. We have to look for it as Chapman did. Finding it, we begin to enjoy what may be called the "aroma of grace."

Each of us must learn to handle brokenness of one kind or another. How we deal with it determines whether we live well or merely endure life until it ends. Misfortunes can make us better or bitter. The good thing is that we have a choice.

Pain is inevitable but misery is a choice. As we face the pain with honesty and hope, something wonderful can occur. Character can happen. We can become finer people because we have faced our troubles with courage. Courage is contagious. Deal with brokenness bravely, with a positive spirit and your example is bound to encourage someone else.

When you find a way to smell the "aroma of grace" in your pain, then the fragrance of our brokenness becomes a sweet perfume to all who savor the essence of your life.