Don’t Give Up

baby

I thought for sure by now that God would have answered my prayers. I don’t even know where to begin with where life has taken me these past few months. I’ve been desperately wanting something. Praying for something and it hasn’t happened.

I was reading my daily devotion today and it was like my eyes were opened it and I felt a peace. I’m reading Elisha: A Tale of Ridiculous Faith in my Bible Ap. I love it! I get something out of every day’s devotion. Today’s was on a miracle of Elisha. 2 miracles happened in this section of scripture I was reading (2 Kings 4:3-37). 1. Elisha told the Shunammite woman she would have a baby 2. Elisha brought the child back to life when he had died.

I’ve read this story many times. I failed to notice that it took Elisha 2x to bring the child back to life. I’ve never noticed that before. The devotional content talked about the fact that it didn’t happen the first time Elisha tried to bring the child back to life. It asked, how many times have we been in Elisha’s position? We’ve prayed and asked God for something knowing that he would do it, but it hasn’t happened yet. It may not happen for months or years. Don’t give up or lose heart! Just because you aren’t successful the first time doesn’t mean that God will not answer your prayer! God knows best and he knows what the best timing would be for what you have asked for.

I have wanted a baby for a long time. When people would ask me when my husband and I were going to have kids, I’d just give the answer that my dog was my baby and he was the only baby I needed. In my heart I was angry that someone would ask. I felt like they were saying I wasn’t whole without a baby but truth was that, that was how I felt. I felt like I wasn’t whole. It has taken me some time to realize that even if I never have  a baby, God makes me whole. It is God who completes me.

A few weeks ago I went to the alter because God was dealing with me about me being angry. I was angry for several reasons. 1. I wanted a baby. 2. I was pregnant but not long after I knew I was I lost it. I didn’t understand why God would take something from me that I wanted so badly. All of my cousins had babies. Most of my friends had them as well and I couldn’t understand why they could but I couldn’t.

I told my Daddy at the alter why I wanted to pray. He said baby, remember Hannah. He anointed me and asked God to give me the desires of my heart. It still has happened yet, but I am not giving up! I haven’t shared this with anyone but my close friends and my immediate family. I hate sharing my feelings because I hate when people feel sorry for you. I hate that! Don’t judge me, it is just the way that I am. I felt compelled to share this because I have read 3 different things about waiting for something that you have asked God for. I think a lot people are in similar situations. They may not be in the exact same situation but are in a waiting period in their lives.

If you are in a waiting period, do not give up. Don’t be angry at God. Realize that He knows what is best for us and in Hid timing our prayers will be answered. For now cling onto that hope from Psalms 37:4. Delight thyself also in the Lord; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart.

This is the verse I am praying and clinging to.

May God Bless you!

Love from above,

Iva Mae

Come To The Well

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I have what you need, but you keep on searchin’. I’ve done all the work, but you keep on workin’. When you’re runnin’ on empty and you can’t find the remedy, Just come to the well.

You can spend your whole life chasin’ what’s missing but that empty inside, just ain’t gonna listen. When nothing can satisfy and the world leaves you high and dry, come to the well.

The above lyrics from Casting Crowns, The Well stuck out to me. I’m done searching for something that I cannot get myself. I’m done stressing over things I cannot control. I’m done chasing things that do not bring me happiness. I am done holding onto things that I need to give to God fully!

I have had a mindset lately that has brought me down. I have let so many things bog me down and keep me in chains. I’ve let Satan have a hay day in my mind.

I forgot who the true enemy was. I have been dwelling on financial mistakes that I’ve made and worrying over how to fix them. I cannot fix it. I know God can but I don’t want to let my burdens go. I keep looking at what every body else has and dwelling on what I don’t.

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The above verse says several things.

  1. Take Heed- take caution, pay attention!
  2. Beware of covetousness- watch out for your desire to have what others have.
  3. Your life is not in the things that you own or don’t own.

L.U.S.T. – Living under Satan’s Thumb. We all lust after something.

We all have a desire/lust for more than what we have. Sometimes it becomes so strong that it takes over our thoughts and our lives. It will drive a wedge between you and God really quick.

God is the source of all joy and happiness. He has store houses full of things that we need.

Luke 12:28-30 “ If then God so clothe the grass, which is to day in the field, and to morrow is cast into the oven; how much more will he clothe you, O ye of little faith? And seek not ye what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink, neither be ye of doubtful mind. For all these things do the nations of the world seek after: and your Father knoweth that ye have need of these things.
God know what we need. He will feel the emptiness. He will take the burdens. All we have to do is go to him. He will fill our empty vessels.
Sometimes to be filled we must first be empty. We must get rid of the pursuit of perfection, fears, temporary pleasures, earthly treasures, dried up & empty religion, chains of addiction and guilt that brings you down (These are all mentioned at the end of the Casting Crowns song The Well).
We must lay those things that have filled us up and left us filling empty. Give it to God. I have the hardest time doing that. I like to be in control. I hate to lose control of anything.
…life hits you out of nowhere and barely leaves you holding on. and when you’re tired of fighting chained by your control, there’s freedom in surrender. Lay it down and let it go…
I am still working on letting go and letting God. It is hard for me.
God has a never ending well and water that will quench your thirst. (John 4)
I am going to be working on letting go of my worry, my doubt, my fear and letting God take care of me. He can do it better than I can.
I know this was short and simple but this has been on my heart. I encourage you to listen to the songs below and to pray and ask God to help you let go of the things you need to and to fill your emptiness with his love.
Songs:
The Well by Casting Crowns
Just Be Held by Casting Crowns

Broken </3

We hear the word broken and typically the first thing that comes to mind is – “How are we gonna fix it?” or “How are we going to replace it?”

We have broken cars, washers, refrigerators, lawn mowers, plumbing, bones, lives, families, hearts, dreams  and homes.

What is the actual definition of broken? Is it something so far gone that it cannot be fixed? It is something meant to be left broken or is it meant to be fixed?

According to Oxford Dictionary Broken is:

  1. having been fractured or damaged and no longer in one piece or in working order:

synonyms: smashed · shattered · fragmented · splintered · crushed

  1. (a person) having given up all hope; despairing:synonyms: defeated · beaten · subdued · demoralized · dispirited

So broken is something damaged. It can be something that isn’t whole (one piece), It can be shattered, crushed, smashed or splintered. It can be something that no longer works. It can even be someone who has given up.

Recently my husband and I both have broken bones. I broke my toe and he broke his finger. I was angry when I broke my toe. I was so angry. It was an accident. Accidents happen but I didn’t want something like that to happen to me. I have too many things to do and I couldn’t walk as fast and could barely walk at all. I thought how could something so small cause me so many problems? My husband went roughly through the same thing. He couldn’t put his boots on or take them off. He found himself frustrated that he wasn’t physically able to do something. Both of us have had a lot of physical pain associated with these breaks.

I found myself really behind on my housework, laundry, dishes and everything else. My house was a mess and still kind of is. All of that got me thinking about how our bodies work. My toe is a small member of my body but when it is broken, my entire body and life suffers. The same goes with the body of Christ. When a member is broken, no matter how small, it is noticeable and until there is healing the whole body will suffer.

When a person is broken that doesn’t mean we need to fix them or that they are no longer worth saving. Jesus came to save the world and provide healing to those who are broken. God tells us so in His word. Isiah 53:5 “He was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.”

by his stripesWhen we are broken we need rest. We need God to pick up the pieces and make them whole again. Our church had a revival a few weeks ago. I was only able to make it to one night. The night I went, the preacher preached about being broken by things we allow into our lives and by circumstances. He had a flower pot and spun it around in his hands and threw it up and caught it. He said we allow more and more things into lives and we let our vessel get loose. The next thing you know your vessel ends up so loose that it falls from your hands and breaks. He threw the pot behind him and it broke into many pieces. He said you can try and try to pick up the pieces but you can’t. He also said you can’t be used when you are a broken vessel. God won’t use a broken vessel. (One reason when members of the body of Christ are broken the whole body suffers)

broken pot

The only way to get whole again is to get down on your knees and ask God to heal you and forgive you and to help you. He got down on his knees as he said this. He said God will pick up your pieces and he will put you back together again. He held up a new pot for us all to see what God can do with our lives and vessels.

flower potAt the time I was struggling with many things and I felt so convicted over his message. I had been broken for a long time and had not gone to God for my healing. The preacher went on to say that we could have broken marriages, lives, vessels, witnesses, homes whatever and that God would heal it. I felt so overwhelmed with the Holy Spirit telling me to go to the alter and ask for forgiveness and healing. I am glad that I did because I walked away feeling whole again. I walked away with hope and with a renewed heart and soul.

Sometimes we have to be broken to be made whole. God can make you whole. He can restore you and revive you. He will pick up your pieces and put you back together. It may be painful. The healing may be a process like the healing of a broken bone, but don’t give up!!! Keep praying, keep reading, keep trusting and keep the faith!

Whatever is broken in your life whether it be; your marriage, your heart, your life, your mind, your spirit, your witness, your finances, your body – come to Jesus and ask for a healing. If you’ve let sin slip into your life, come to Jesus. He will give you healing and forgiveness.

I always feel awkward writing a prayer but I need to do what is on my heart.

God,

I ask that you speak to the hearts of those who read this. I ask that you would provide healing in whatever aspect of life that it is needed. I ask you to give them a renewal of their hearts, souls and minds. I thank you for what you’ve done and what you will do. I ask that you flood each person’s life who reads this with your love. God we know you are exceeding and able to do all things and we know that you will. I ask that if someone is reading this and they used to be on fire for you that you would stir up their hearts and start a fire in them again. I ask you to give peace and comfort and joy to those who are without it. Lord we ask that if there is someone reading this who doesn’t know you, that they will come to know you. Use us Lord and let us be your vessels. I ask all these things in your name, Amen.

My hope for you is that you will come to the well that never goes dry and that you will get what you need.

Love from above,

Iva Mae

Unworthy

crosstwilight

FOREVER by Kari Jobe

The moon and stars they wept
The morning sun was dead
The Savior of the world was fallen
His body on the cross
His blood poured out for us
The weight of every curse upon him

One final breath He gave
As Heaven looked away
The Son of God was laid in darkness
A battle in the grave
The war on death was waged
The power of hell forever broken

The ground began to shake
The stone was rolled away
His perfect love could not be overcome
Now death where is your sting
Our resurrected King has rendered you defeated

Forever, He is glorified
Forever, He is lifted high
Forever, He is risen
He is alive
He is alive

I love that song! The words are so beautiful and it reminds me exactly what God did for us on Calvary. Speaking of Calvary, Easter Season is upon us. A time for us to reflect on God’s love for us. A love so great that he would send his only son to die on a cross and bare the world’s sins when he was without sin. A perfect lamb, the supreme sacrifice to make a way to Heaven for all of us who are unworthy of such a gift. A gift that is free.

I read Romans 5:8 yesterday. It reminded me how unworthy I truly am of God’s love.

Romans 5:8 But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.

I like to look up words that I don’t quite know the meaning of. According to Merriam-Webster Dictionary, commend means: 1. to praise in a serious & often public way; to mention as deserving attention or approval. 2. to entrust for care or preservation 3. to recommend as worthy of 4. to mention with approbation (praise).

To me this verse says God showed us his love by giving his son as a sacrifice for our sins and thought we were worthy of His love even though we were sinners. It makes me feel so unworthy to know that God has a love for us that big!

I read in Lamentations today about mercy. According to Merriam-Webster mercy is 1.kind or forgiving treatment of someone who could be treated harshly. 2. compassion or forbearance shown especially to an offender or one subject to one’s power.

Lamentations 3:22&23 It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness.

God is also a merciful God! He is merciful when we fail him. He was merciful on us and gave us a way out of our sin. He gave us a way to go to Heaven when he didn’t have to. All we have to do is accept His Son Jesus as our savior, believe that he died for our sins, rose again on the third day, confess our sins and ask for forgiveness of those sins. It is so simple that sometimes it seems unbelievable. How can such a big God give his son for me? I didn’t do anything to deserve it. In fact it is quite the opposite. I’ve done lots of things that didn’t deserve once ounce of mercy. Thank God it is not what I’ve done or didn’t do. It is what God did! What Christ did for us. A willing sacrifice.

I don’t feel that words can describe the gratitude and love I feel for Christ’s ultimate act of love. I’ve been feeling even more unworthy lately. I have slipped in my reading and prayer life and have put God on the back burner. I have stumbled and said things that I’ve regretted. I have not have God’s love for people and I have had an ultimately bad attitude about everything. Basically I have been fighting with my flesh. The ugly side, the side that wants to do what I want and who cares about anything else. I’ve been mad at God for some really stupid reasons! Just dumb. My husband didn’t get his Christmas bonus like we expected and we didn’t get a tax return like we expected either. We  got a check from an excess in our escrow account and it was a mistake. I got a letter saying we needed to send it back. I was mad at God for those things and even questioned why would you let this happen to us? Why? We needed that money! God reminded me yesterday that even though I think I need something that doesn’t mean that I truly do. He will always provide for us. He gives us exactly what we need.

One of our bills was unexpectedly high and it was going to overdraw our account if I paid it. I was just going to pay it with a credit card which I didn’t want to do. I prayed and asked God to please make a way and somehow help us to cover the costs even though I doubted that he would. I called our mortgage company about the letter I received asking to return the funds. I needed to know who to write the check to. After speaking to her she apologized and said there was a computer glitch and it messed a lot of people’s accounts up. She said I’ll make a note that you are going to send the funds back and the amount you need to send back is $XXX.XX. She explained to me that they gave us all the money from our escrow and it zeroed our account out. If I sent the amount she said back it will be enough to cover the shortage in the account.

She told me who to write the check to and made sure I knew to include some things in the check so they would know what to do with it. After I hung up I subtracted the amount that I was returning from the amount of the check we got and low and behold it was just enough for the bill that we got that was unexpectedly high.

I was overwhelmed with God’s love. I felt so undeserving of that after I had been so upset and angry. God will always provide for his children even though we don’t always deserve it.

I thank God for unexpected blessings and for unexpected bills. God is showing me more and more how much I need him. He doesn’t need me, I need him.! I thank God for the cross, for sending his son to die for me so that I could go to Heaven one day. I thank him for providing for me always and for his reminders. I thank God for his mercy, love, grace and understanding.

This week as you think of what the Easter Bunny may bring, don’t forget to reflect on what Easter is truly about and God’s love for us. Even though we were unworthy, God said yes we are worthy. It should have been you and me on that cross. We were the ones deserving of punishment. Christ went to the cross willingly and died for us because of His love for us.

A song I love is “Small as I am” by Nathan & Tonya Horton. It has been on replay on my phone. The words are awesome and describe how I feel.

SMALL AS I AM by Nathan & Tonya Horton

as_small_as_i_am

May God bless you this week and may you feel his overwhelming love!

Love from above,

Iva Mae

Here are a few of my favorite songs that go along with this post:

Forever by Kari Jobe https://youtu.be/huFra1mnIVE

Small as I am by Nathan & Tonya Horton Scroll down to Our Testimony CD and the song is #4. You can actually purchase this song and/or the album from this site as well.  http://nathanandtonyahorton.com/store

Alive (from the Story) by Natalie Grant https://youtu.be/3AFpgzjRD44

Not Guilty by Mandisa https://youtu.be/S7fokl9riJ0

It Is Well

it-is-well-with-my-soul

So let go my soul and trust in Him. The waves and wind still know His name.

2 Kings 4:26 Run now, I pray thee, to meet her, and say unto her, Is it well with thee? is it well with thy husband? is it well with the child? And she answered, It is well.

I love the story in 2 Kings 4. My summary of the story in 2 Kings 4 is this:

Elisha the prophet went through the town of Shunam quite a bit. A Shunammite woman always offered bread to Elisha when he would pass by. He came that way so much that her and her husband made him a bed at their house for him to stay when he came by that way. The man and woman found favor in Elisha’s eyes. Elisha told them she would have a son within the year and she did just like he said. When he was older, he fell ill and died. The Shunammite woman laid him on Elisha’s bed in their house and got on a donkey to go to Elisha. Her husband asked why she was going to see Elisha and she answered IT IS WELL. When she got close, Elisha saw her and sent his servant to get her. Elisha’s servant asked if everything was okay she replied IT IS WELL. Even thought her little son had died, she said it is well. She fell before Elisha’s feet. He knew something was wrong and she was “vexed in her soul”. She asked him did she not desire a son and to not deceive her. Elisha knew something was wrong with her son so he and the woman traveled back to her house, where he saw the boy was dead. He prayed to God & the child came back to life.

What gets me about this story, is that the Shunammite woman continually said IT IS WELL. Her circumstances were horrible. She lost the son that God had given her, but she refused to let that bring her down. I’ve said it before but attitude can make such a HUGE difference in your life.

I think sometimes in life we focus so much on the circumstances. We become blinded by all the bad things, unhappiness and the negativity that we forget that God can help us. We take on a poor attitude and outlook (I’m so guilty of this). The Shunammite woman was heartbroken! Her son that she never expected to have had died. Loosing a child would be devastating. She knew the only way she would get through and the only way to get help was to go to the man of God.

My soul has been weary and unsettled. I just feel burnt out and exhausted. I have had a bad attitude and have been in a bad overall mood for a long time. I was praying this morning, God please help me in my time of unhappiness and heartache I can’t take this anymore! The song It Is Well With My Soul came to mind. I LOVE when God speaks to me like that. I started singing it to myself. Then I looked it up on YouTube because I couldn’t remember the words. I am horrible with remembering words to songs! I listened to the Hymn version and saw a video It Is Well by Kristene DiMarco & Bethel Music. I listened to it and was just overwhelmed with peace. I loved the line “So let go my soul and trust in Him. The waves and wind still know His name.” It just spoke to me. No matter how the storms may rage in my life God still has power over them! The winds and oceans have to obey God. He is in control and I can say IT IS WELL!

I have a hard time of letting go sometimes. I try to take things on myself. I am strong-willed and independent. I hate for anyone to do something for me, I’d rather just do it myself. I struggle a lot with letting go and letting God handle my circumstances. In the past few years I’ve learned more and more how to do this. I just feel like I’m burdening God with things that are silly or don’t matter. God cares about me and he cares about what I am going through. He loves us. He loves us so much, he gave his ONLY son to die on a cross for OUR sins. We just have to get over ourselves and surrender to him. Even though circumstances haven’t changed, I know God can change them. If he doesn’t, he will get me through! I know God hears my prayers! There is peace in that alone. Through it all I am going to say IT IS WELL!!

Below is a link to the YouTube version of It Is Well by Kristene DiMarco & Bethel Music as well as a link to It Is Well (Elisha’s Song) by the Isaacs

God bless!

Iva Mae

It Is Well by Kristene DiMarco & Bethel Music

https://youtu.be/YNqo4Un2uZI

It Is Well (Elisha’s Song) by The Isaacs

https://youtu.be/w87KlbHCZJw

Part the Sea

redsea

This is from http://www.egypt-tours.org

We all know the story of Moses parting the Red Sea. The Children of Israel had just left Egypt and were no longer slaves. Pharaoh and his army were hot on their trail and pursuing them. The Children of Israel were afraid and started saying it was better when they were slaves. Moses told the Children of Israel (Exodus 14:13 & 14) “…Fear ye not, stand still, and see the salvation of the Lord, which he will shew to you to day: for the Egyptians whom ye have seen to day, ye shall see them again no more for ever. The Lord shall fight for you, and ye shall hold your peace.” God told Moses to that he would show Pharaoh and his army that He was Lord. God told Moses to raise his staff over the sea and it would part. The Children of Israel would walk on dry land. The angel and pillar that led the way for the Children of Israel, went behind them and cut the Egyptians off from them. Moses did what God told him to do and the Red Sea was parted and the Children of Israel crossed on dry land safely to the other side. The Egyptians went after them. God told Moses to stretch out his hand over the sea so the water would go back together and consume the Egyptians. Moses obeyed God and the Children of Israel were saved.

I got three important things from this. 1). God will make a way when there doesn’t seem to be one. He will part your Red Sea. 2). Be obedient to God and he will use you to do mighty things. 3). There is beauty when God parts your sea, even though it may seem scary.

We should never put limitations on God even when it is something major or that seems so impossible that it could never happen. Matthew 19:26 “…With God all things are possible.” Whatever your Red Sea is, when you come to it, be patient. Obey God and do what he tells you to. Moses listened to God and because of his obedience the Children of Israel were saved from the Egyptians. When God parts your sea, it might be scary! I’ve thought about what it would be like to walk in the middle of the sea. There’s a wall of water on each side of you as high as you can see. I’m sure you see every rock, piece of sea weed, coral, and what not on the sea floor and surrounding you are whales, fish and sharks. The water on both sides would be scary too. You may feel like it might come down on you. Keep the faith, trust God and be obedient!! Walk through that sea on dry land knowing God is protecting you and he will make a way. Enjoy your view through it all, find the beauty. I’m sure the Children of Israel saw some beautiful and marvelous things through their walk in the sea floor! I would love to see the different sea life that they saw. I looked up what kinds of sea life is in the Red Sea because I am curious like that and found a site that listed the different sea life in the Red Sea. The link is below.

http://www.aziab.com/red%20sea%20marine%20life.htm

This is my favorite fish I found that is in the Red Sea. It’s called a Masked Butterflyfish.

masked-butterflyfish

Here is a map of the Red Sea. I like to get the whole picture and see where things took place.

red sea

I got such comfort from reading Exodus14 today. Even when things seem hopeless, there is still hope! God takes care of his children!

I know this wasn’t extravagant or mind blowing, but I hope some one else was able to find comfort as I did! God Bless!

Love from above,

Iva Mae

P.S. Enjoy one of my favorite funnies! I had a calendar with this on it by DaySpring. This cracks me up!

Herman Catches A Lucky Break

Herman's lucky break

His Eye is on The Sparrow

sparrow

Matthew 10:29-31 Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? and one of them shall not fall on the ground without your Father. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows.

Often I feel like I don’t matter and that my problems don’t matter to God. That is NOT true at all. If it matters to me it matters to God. He cares about me and he cares about my problems and my circumstances. He says in His word that He knows when a sparrow falls and to FEAR NOT! We are of more value than sparrows. If God knows when a small little bird falls, He knows what we need when we need it. It matters to him. We are important to Him!! We can go to Him with our problems, cares and worries!

Matthew 11:28 Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.

God says in His word that he is a place of rest! He is also a refuge and a help when we are in trouble (Psalms 46:1). We can go to Him and be safe no matter what is bothering us. A refuge is shelter or protection from danger or trouble; a place that provides shelter or protection. Asking for help can be humbling. It is for me. I’m so independent and have been since birth. It’s a good habit that has it faults. Especially when it comes to asking for help when I need it. I still somehow think I can do it on my own.

1 Peter 5:6 & 7 Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time: Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.

God’s word tells us what to do. We just sometimes do not want bother Him. I feel that way often. I believe that what I feel or what I am going through isn’t worthy of God’s time, but that is wrong. God says so clearly in His word to cast all your cares on Him.

I woke up this morning with the song “Better than a Hallelujah” by Amy Grant on my mind. The words “We pour out our miseries God just hears a melody. Beautiful the mess we are the honest cries of breaking hearts are better than a hallelujah sometimes” just keep going through my mind over and over again this morning. I said God what are you trying to tell me. I started reading and all of the verses above just spoke to me. I don’t have to fear, I don’t have to worry or hurt. God can take that for me. He wants to or He wouldn’t have told us in His word to cast all your cares upon him for he cares for you.

better than a halleluiah

It’s a learning process every day as a Christian. I’m learning something new and understanding something more than I did before. I know now not to worry about taking anything to God, big or small, he will help me.

God Bless!!

Love from above,

Iva Mae