Seasons

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There are four seasons in a year. Depending on where you live it may seem like there are only 1 or 2. I live in Ohio and there are 4 distinct seasons, usually.

I find good in all of them but Winter is my least favorite. It is cold, you can’t do anything outside and it can be rough to drive in. To me it seems like Winter lasts forever. I’m so busy focusing on when Spring is coming that I don’t stop and take in the season I am in.

We do this often in our lives as well. We are so focused on getting out of our current life season that we can miss God in our current season. He is there with us even in the ugly. He is with us even if it seems like our season will never end. Right now I am in an ugly season. A season of pain, heartache and no understanding. I’ve been in this season for nearly a year. I don’t speak of it to anyone not even my husband. I just keep it to myself, because that is what I do. I so desperately want to move on to the next season of my life but it hasn’t happened yet.

I’ve spent so much time being upset about not being able to have a child, that I’ve missed so much. This is a time for just my husband and I. Once we have kids, there will never be a time like this again. We won’t be able to just pick up, hop in the car or on the motorcycle and go. There will be no more snuggles on the couch with just us and the dog. No more sleeping in together on Saturdays. It will be harder for us to focus on just us. It will be harder on our marriage.

I’ve been realizing this more and more here lately. The pain is still there, there’s an ache for something I very well may never have. This is a season in my life that may never pass or it may pass in a few years. I have missed God in this season too. I’ve been so focused on getting out of this, that I haven’t had my focus on God. I’ve missed God in so many things that He has done for me.

This season in my life is for a purpose! It will draw me closer to God and change me. I can use this season to help someone else. God has a plan for my life. Sometimes it doesn’t feel like it. It feels like God doesn’t understand or care about the pain we are going through.

Does Jesus even know what it feels like to have this pain or sorrow?

The answer is yes. John 11:35 “Jesus wept.” Jesus felt pain and sorrow over the death of his friend.

Does He know what is like? Does He care?

Yes! Hebrews 4:15-16 “For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.”

We can come boldly before the throne so we can obtain MERCY and GRACE in the time of need. It says in verse 15 Jesus knows what it is like he was tempted, yet he sinned not!

Satan will do everything he can to destroy us to keep us from having a purposeful life in Christ. He doesn’t want us to succeed. He wants us to be distracted by what may seem like failures, faults, pains, sorrows, hurts, problems, trying to get out of our current season and feelings of hopelessness. He will whisper how that God doesn’t care about your stupid problems. He will whisper lies of how no one can help you and that God doesn’t know what you’re going through. He wants to isolate you, distract you. Tranquilize you if you will so he can reek havoc.

We can miss God in every season because we are so worried about getting to that next season and next point in our lives.

My church’s Vacation Bible School was on Joseph this year. Genesis 38-48

Joseph went through many negative seasons in his life. He was loved by his father and was given a special gift, a coat of many colors. His brothers wanted to destroy him. They took his coat, threw him in a pit and sold him as a slave. They made their father believe that he was dead. They covered his coat with animal blood.

I couldn’t help but think about how that Satan tries to destroy your gift and you. He will do anything to destroy you. He will make you feel isolated from THE Father. He will attack your passion, your hope, your family, your prayer life, your health and many other things to prevent you from doing what God has called you to do. What God has created you to do.

After Joseph was sold into slavery, his master’s wife accused him of rape. She tried to get him to sleep with her and he said no, so as punishment for not getting what she wanted, she accused him of rape. When he said no, he turned to run away and she grabbed his coat off of him. She used that as evidence that he was there. Poor Joseph couldn’t keep his coats on. Someone was always trying to take them off of him!

Joseph ended up in prison. He spent several years there. God used him even in this season of his life. Even in the ugly, God showed up! Joseph ended up being in prison who two of Pharaoh’s men. He interpreted a dream for them. The one promised Joseph he would remember him but he forgot about Joseph until the Pharaoh had a dream. The man remembered that Joseph could interpret dreams. They pulled Joseph out of prison and he interpreted the dream for Pharaoh. Pharaoh made Joseph second in command and put him in charge of the food storehouse.

Joseph went from being sold into slavery, put into prison for several years and finally made second in command to Pharaoh. This all allowed him to take care of his family during a horrible drought. Joseph didn’t focus on trying to get out of the season he was in to get to the next even though he was imprisoned. Satan tried to destroy Joseph. He used his family and his “owner’s” wife to try to put an end to what Joseph’s calling was.

No matter how long  the season you are in may seem. It may seem like it is never ending, know that it will be over and look for God while you wait for the next season. Know your season will serve a purpose. Use it to grow closer to God! Become a stronger Christian. Fight on your knees! Prayer is the best weapon we have.

Love from above,

Iva Mae

 

 

 

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Living by Faith

faith

Let me start off by saying that I fail God daily. Every. Single. Day. I. Fail. Him.

I don’t really know if this blog helps anyone else, but it helps me and it keeps me in check. I write a new post whenever God lays something on my heart. Usually it is on what I am dealing with or going through. God’s been working on me a lot here lately. I am thankful for that!

I have been lacking in my faith. I used to have so much faith but it seems here recently that my faith is lacking. I’ve been questioning myself as to why my faith is lacking. God hasn’t changed, so I know that isn’t it. He never changes. I started examining my life and trying to pinpoint exactly why, when and how it happened. What have I let get in the way? What has gotten in the way? The answer? Iva has gotten in the way. Iva has doubted God’s love. What does God’s love have to do with my faith? Everything. Faith doesn’t work without love. Galations 5:6For in Jesus Christ neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision; but faith which worketh by love.

Faith works by love. At first I was confused by this. Utterly confused. I heard it explained like this. Imagine curtains. You have to have a rod to hang curtains. Try to hang curtains with the curtains on the hooks and not have a rod. The curtains will end up on the floor. Love is the rod that you hang your life on and faith are the hooks. When I heard this analogy, it was like a light bulb went ding ding ding! Bingo! Yatzee! Here it is Iva. Here is your answer. Deep down I have been doubting God’s love for me. I know. Stupid, right?

When I got up the morning that this all me I was in a horrible mood. Some possibly bad news had been given to my husband the day before. I was angry that God would give something then take it away especially something we needed. I drove to work angry. I was moody and grumpy at work and then out of no where the song Living by Faith came to my mind. Living by faith in Jesus above. Trusting confiding in His great love; from all harm safe in His sheltering arm, I’m living by faith and feel no alarm. I love when that happens. God always puts a song on my mind right when I need it. I looked up the hymn and read all the lyrics. I am a lyric nerd. I have trouble with lyrics. Just ask my husband. I sing songs around the house all the time and if I don’t know the lyrics I make them up. Kyle calls me out on it and I say I was just freestylin. Because of this, I like to look up what the lyrics actually are to songs that pop in my head. I also like to hear the song so I typed in Living by Faith on YouTube. I listened to the song and in the suggestions was a message by a preacher named Creflo Dollar. I listened to it and I was blessed. I highly recommended that you watch it. You can listen to it here: The Just shall live by faith

There are 4 verses in the bible that specifically say the just shall live by faith. If it says it 4 times you know it is important!

Habakkuk 2:4 “Behold, his soul which is lifted up is not upright in him: but the just shall live by faith.”

Romans 1:17 “For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.”

Galatians 3:11 “But no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith.”

Hebrews 10:38 Now the just shall live by faith: but if any man draw back, my soul shall have no pleasure in him.”

So we know the just shall live by faith but what does that mean exactly? What is faith by definition? Merriam-Webster says it is: (1) allegiance to duty or a person: loyalty; belief and trust in and loyalty to God (2)belief in the traditional doctrines of a religion: firm belief in something for which there is no proof: complete trust (3) something that is believed especially with strong conviction; without question.

What is the biblical definition of faith? Hebrews 11:1 “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”

Faith is the substance (stuff or essence or base) of the things we hope for but have not actually seen. The bible tell us to walk by faith. (2 Corinthians 5:7) We are to live our lives by love and faith. We need love to have faith. Faith is the belief in God’s love for us. God loves me and I am confident that he will provide for me. He loves me and that is why I have faith in Him and His ability to take care of me. He loves me so much that he would send His only begotten son to die on a cross, bare the sin of the world so that we all could go to Heaven if we accept Christ in our hearts.

I listened to lies from Satan. He is good at his job. Satan will whisper lies. Things like, God isn’t going to take care of you, God will not do that, don’t count on God to make that happen, God doesn’t love you, God won’t forgive you, God can’t use you because you failed, God can’t use you because you’re different, God doesn’t care about you having a car, God doesn’t care about you having a house and so many other lies straight outta the pits of hell. We start to lose our confidence. We doubt ourselves and we doubt God’s love. Hebrews 10:35 “Cast not away therefore your confidence, which hath great recompence of reward.”

Satan will attack your confidence. He will remind you of past mistakes, shortcomings and failures to get your state of mind to make you feel like you are under God’s judgement instead of the blood.  It will make you think that God won’t help you because of something you did in the past. That is not true. If you are a born again Christian, you are under the blood! Yes we will fail and fall short. When you do you can go to God in prayer and ask for forgiveness and he will lift you up.

When you pray, pray with the confidence that God will do what you have asked Him. I think faith and confidence go together. I sit in my chair because I am confident it will hold me. Because God loves me, he will provide for me. Phillipians 4:19 “But God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.” The bible says it right there. He will provide my need according to HIS riches in glory. All that I have is His. Anything that I get it His. I just get to borrow it.

I love when God takes the veil off so that I can see the things I need to. I don’t know if anyone else ever feels or has felt the way that I had been but this helped me. God loves His children. He will take care of us. That doesn’t mean we won’t have trials or hard times. This means that God will provide for us when we need it.

God I ask that you would lift the veil off those who need it lifted off so that their eyes can see what you need them to see through your word. Help those today who may be struggling and those whose faith is being tested. Give them the strength they need to endure and let them feel your loving arms. I ask all these things in your name. Amen.

May all of you have a blessed Easter. He is risen!! Today is Friday… but Sunday is coming!!

Love from above, Iva Mae

he is risen

P.S. I apologize if this post seemed scatter brained. It took me 3 days to finish this.