Obedience

Do Not Fear Man

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Hello, my name is Meghan, and I am a recovered people pleaser.

The disease to please is deceptive. It looks really nice on the outside. But it hides an awful, sinful truth. Pride. Wait a minute, people pleasers are so nice. They only want what’s best for others. No, not really. 

As a former people pleaser I can tell you the ugly truth. You please people to make them happy and like you. I thought I was doing good. I was motivated by my own needs. It’s all about me. I did not see that at first, and yes, that sounds really harsh. Sure, the facade is niceness. But, it’s actually selfish. The motive to people please is fear of man. That is wrong.

I was not aware of my people pleasing ways until I was a teenager, maybe late teens. Once Jesus opened my eyes to my problem, He then showed me how dangerous it was. We are to fear God, not man. 

The motive to please people is fear and insecurity. That is not from the Lord. I could jump through a million hoops and still disappoint many people, and I have. When Jesus began to unravel me, and reveal all of my ugly prideful ways, He set me free. There is freedom in fearing God and only God.

I am to please my Heavenly Father. He never shames me, guilts me, or turns me away. When you put God first and pleasing Him first, there are times you will offend people. It was hard for me to disappoint others, initially. Now, I’m pretty good at it. Hahaha!

People pleaser me: What will they think?

New creation in Christ me: What does God think?

Everything changed for me. My motivation used to be what would others think of “fill in the blank decision”. My motivation now is pleasing Father God.

The Bible is quite clear on this topic. We are to fear God and not man. 

The LORD is for me; I will not fear; What can man do to me? Psalm 118:6, NASB 

Fear of man will prove to be a snare, but whoever trusts in the LORD is kept safe. Proverbs 29:25, NIV 

What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? Romans 8:31, NKJV 

Now I say to you, My friends, do not be afraid of those who kill the body, and after that have nothing more that they can do. But I will warn you whom to fear: fear the One who, after He has killed someone, has the power to throw that person into hell; yes, I tell you, fear Him! Luke 12:4-5, NASB 

If you are struggling in this area I feel your pain. I was in that same place. There is hope in Jesus for total freedom from pleasing people. You can start today. Ask God to reveal areas where you are fearing man and not fearing God. It will be difficult at first. 

No is a powerful word. Begin with saying NO to things that you know are wrong. Pray about your decisions. Read the Bible and stay grounded in the truth of the Word. Ask God to give you strength and courage to say NO to the fear of man stuff in your life. The Holy Spirit will give you the words to say when you have to tell someone NO. 

Fearing God does not mean we are rude, heartless robots. God fearing people love, forgive, show grace, and mercy. We just aren’t motivated by fearing man. We do what’s right and sometimes that means we are going to tick some people off. That’s OK. If we are obeying God and following His Word He will help us. 

God first, always. 

Love you all,

Meghan

Father God,

Thank you for your patience, grace, and love. Help all of us to stop fearing man. Forgive us for the times we have put other’s desires above Your desires. Help us to stay focused on You and pleasing You. Stop us from the disease to please people. Set us free. Help us to love others and honor You in our lives. We praise You, the One true God. You are Holy!

In Jesus name,

Amen 

Holy Spirit, Obedience

It’s Time to Clean House

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As a young adult I was idealistic. I naively believed I was doing just fine as a Christian. I was saved from Hell, free from the grip of sin, and I had Jesus. I knew God loved me and I loved Him. That’s all I needed. Life was good. Cue the record scratch…..

My perfect world started to fray. I was being confronted with thoughts about my past. 

God showed me a house, much like this adorable tin house. Perfect, with flower boxes and charming green shutters. Beautiful on the outside. He took me on a tour inside the pretty little house. It looked pristine as we walked through each room. But something caught my eye. The hall closet was bulging. I opened the door and a whole bunch of stuff spilled out. Dusty boxes and old coats fell to the floor. 

God, what is all of this?

It’s all the stuff we are going to clear out and get rid of. It’s the old habits and patterns that you have kept. They need to go.

Wait a minute Lord. I am doing just fine. I’ve got Jesus and that’s all I need. Let’s put all of this back. We can deal with it another time.

God opened the boxes and gently placed items on the floor. They weren’t pretty all lined up. I saw anger, hurt, and fear.

Here’s the reality, God loves us too much to let us stay as we are. Getting saved is only the beginning. Praise God for saving us from death, and sin, and Hell. Salvation is one hundred percent worth daily praises to Jesus and our Heavenly Father. 

After we are saved, a whole new journey begins with Jesus Christ.

God’s purpose is to make us like Jesus.

The fancy Christian word for this journey is sanctification. It sounds so intimidating. All it means is being set apart for God’s purposes. Sanctification comes from the Greek word hagiasmos, meaning holiness or separation. 

They are not of the world, even as I am not of it.

Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth.

John 17:16-17, NIV 

Jesus prayed those words. Once we are in Christ, we are separated from the world just like Him. Jesus was without sin, and we are not. Though we are saved from sin because of Jesus’ precious blood, we can still sin. The difference now is we do not want to sin, and we have conviction of our sin. We are on a holiness journey in this sanctification process.

For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren; 

Romans 8:29, NASB 

God’s plan from the beginning was to conform us into the image of His son, Jesus. Our example of how to live and how to be in this world is Jesus. He was and is perfect. Though we will never arrive at perfection on this side of eternity, God will not allow us to stay as we were before we met Christ. Holiness is the goal through the transforming power of the Holy Spirit. 

But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit. 

2 Corinthians 3:18, NASB 

The Holy Spirit is driving us on God’s path to holiness. The exciting part is we get a little more freedom each time we go through those closets hidden with our bad habits. The attic might be filled to the brim with pain and hurt, but God will sit with you as each box is opened, and clear things out to make you and I more and more like Christ.

Don’t you want to be like Jesus? There is no one like Him. Jesus is the Savior to the world. And God loves us so much that He wants us to be more like His precious Son. And that is good news! Think of the best person you know. They are flawed, and sinful, and will let you down. Jesus is perfect, loving, and will never let you down. God is making each Believer into the image of Jesus. That’s incredible.

So yes, let’s surrender to this whole sanctification process. It is not easy to deal with our stuff, and issues, sin, and all of our ugliness. But God, who is merciful and loving will not let us stay like that. We are set apart for God’s purposes. Amen

Is there a closet that needs cleaned out in your life? Maybe you have a garage full of pain and heartache that you have refused to open up to the Father. Today, make a choice to surrender it all to Him. God will lovingly help you clean out those dark spaces. 

I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. Galatians 2:20, NIV

Love you all,

Meghan 

If you need prayer leave your request on my contact page.

P.S. The perfect tin dollhouse was my mother-in-law’s when she was a little girl. I now have it along with all the tiny furniture and people. I may have set it up a time or two. 

Sources

https://biblehub.com/greek/38.htm

Faith, Obedience

100 Things for My 100th Post!

 

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My 100th post! I cannot believe I’ve posted that much. A lot has happened in my two years of blogging. I want to start by saying “thank you!” to each and every one of you. Thank you to each of my followers. Thank you for your support. It means everything to me.

Thank you to every person who has liked and commented on any of my posts. Your feedback is a huge blessing to me. Thank you to anyone who has dropped in and read a post. Thank you!

Here are a few fun facts about my blog.

There have been 71,057 words written on my 99 posts.

I have recieved 1200 likes and 939 comments.

People from 86 countries have visited my site. Places like Sri Lanka, Botswana, Cameroon, Macedonia, Pakistan, and Israel, to name just a few.

I started this blog because I wrote a kids book, Joey Flynn’s Extraordinary Tale. The link is on my home page. I didn’t know what I was doing, or what exactly I was supposed to blog about. I stepped out in faith, trusting that God would equip me, and He did.

I have learned a lot, written a lot, met all kinds of great people, and gotten stronger in my faith in the process. My goal is still the same, “to encourage kids and adults“. I say kids because of my book, and future kids books. I always write from the perspective of my faith and share the truth about the Bible, and Jesus to the best of my ability.

Every post has been prayed over, studied, researched, and written with care to bless you.

Here is my first blog ever Unqualified

Thank you for coming along on this blogging journey with me. I pray that you have been encouraged in some small way by my writing. I am so grateful for you! I’m just getting warmed up. I’ve got lots more to write about.

Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

Love you all,

Meghan

 

For fun, I’ve put together a list of 100 random things about me. They are in no particular order. Enjoy!

  1. I’m addicted to coffee.
  2. I love Cobb salad.
  3. My dream job is to be a pastry chef.
  4. My other dream job is to be a farmer.
  5. I don’t drink soda very often.
  6. The first thing I do in the morning is grab my Bible.
  7. I make coffee before I do anything else. (Refer to #1)
  8. Bible, coffee, and prayer start my day.
  9. I love being outside.
  10. I’m obsessed with the sky.
  11. I’m always looking at clouds.
  12. I’m also obsessed with the night sky.
  13. I love the moon.
  14. I see God everywhere in nature.
  15. I love to laugh.
  16. I find so many things funny.
  17. Tiramisu is one of my favorite desserts.
  18. I dream of going to Israel.
  19. I also dream of going to Italy.
  20. My childhood dream was to be a fashion designer.
  21. I was always drawing as a kid.
  22. Baby animals make me smile.
  23. Birds are incredible.
  24. Rainy days make me want to bake, read books, and watch movies.
  25. I love architecture.
  26. I love old churches and cathedrals.
  27. I love the old Spanish Missions.
  28. The beach is one of my happy places.
  29. I’m happiest barefoot.
  30. I have naturally curly hair.
  31. I usually straighten my hair.
  32. I would cry as a little girl when my mom combed my thick, tangled hair.
  33. I hate large bugs.
  34. I screamed the first time I saw a huge cockroach in Texas. (They are BIG here)
  35. I Love being on the water. Ocean, lake, stream, pool; it doesn’t matter.
  36. I swim often in our swimming pool.
  37. My favorite season is summer.
  38. Impressionism, naturalism, and realism are my favorite styles of paintings.
  39. I don’t like clutter.
  40. I love post-it notes and use them a lot.
  41. Hurting, broken people are my people.
  42. I wanted to be Wonder Woman as a child.
  43. I hate horror movies.
  44. I enjoy Indie movies. (good ones)
  45. I love documentaries.
  46. Biographies and history are my favorite types of books.
  47. I don’t enjoy novels. 
  48. A pet peeve I’ve got is back massages during church. It’s creepy and distracting.
  49. I’m a teensy bit claustrophobic.
  50. I love antiques.
  51. I love a bargain.
  52. I love to dance.
  53. I love the smell of fresh cut grass.
  54. Peanut butter M&M’s are the best ones.
  55. My favorite ice cream is peanut butter chocolate from Baskin Robbins.
  56. Lilacs and hydrangeas are two of my favorite flowers.
  57. I do not like public speaking.
  58. I love hiking trails.
  59. Working in my garden is therapy for me.
  60. I am a task-oriented person.
  61. I teach a cooking class to middle school and high school age kids.
  62. I’m about to start my 17th year of homeschool. 
  63. I love to cook.
  64. I love to try new recipes and force my family to eat them.
  65. Italian food is my all time favorite.
  66. I don’t like to fold and put away laundry.
  67. My favorite movie candy is Junior Mints.
  68. I love sweet tea.
  69. My favorite preacher is Charles Spurgeon. 
  70. I greatly admire Joan of Arc.
  71. One of my favorite colors is teal.
  72. Elijah and Moses are two of my favorite Bible people.
  73. I keep most cards I’ve been given.
  74. I love Christmas.
  75. I go overboard with Christmas decorations.
  76. I love big coffee mugs. (refer to #1)
  77. I love getting a pile of cookbooks from the library and getting inspired.
  78. I love getting a pile of history, art, and gardening books from the library.
  79. I love to watch America’s Test Kitchen.
  80. I love to watch The Great British Bake Off.
  81. I love to take pictures of pretty much everything.
  82. Most of the pictures on my blog are mine.
  83. I plan on writing a second book.
  84. I may even write a third book.
  85. I never dreamed of being a writer.
  86. I love to encourage people.
  87. I sing loudly and badly in my car.
  88. I love to travel.
  89. I love exploring new places.
  90. I love 80’s music.
  91. Worship music is my jam.
  92. I love hanging out with my husband and sons.
  93. My husband and sons make me laugh and fill me up.
  94. I am blessed with incredible Godly women whom I call friends.
  95. I never met a stranger.
  96. I keep my circle of people small.
  97. I have 4 siblings.
  98. My little sis is one of my people.
  99. I love to entertain and plan parties.
  100. I love to put gifts together for others.

 

 

Photo by Magda Ehlers on Pexels.com

God, Obedience

The Potter

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Ceramics was one of my high school electives. It was only for a semester and I wasn’t very good at it. I did give it my best try and actually enjoyed making ceramics. The pottery wheel was exciting and very difficult. If you didn’t get your clay exactly at the center of the wheel the pottery was not going to work. Then there was the enormous challenge of shaping the clay. The entire process had to be started over if any part went wrong.

God is The Potter. He made each of us. Shaping us with His mighty hands. Vessels to be used for His glory. 

In the ancient world pottery was an important part of almost every aspect of life. There were storage jars, oil lamps, and cooking pots all made from clay. The earliest pottery was formed by hand.

Yet you, Lord, are our Father.
    We are the clay, you are the potter;
    we are all the work of your hand. Isaiah 64:8, NIV 

When the clay goes bad or something goes wrong in the process, the potter crushes it down and starts again. The potter never throws the clay out.

God will never throw us away. We are the clay in His powerful hands. We must trust what He is doing.

Trust God when everything is falling apart.

Trust God when you are being crushed.

Trust God when the cracks are getting bigger.

Trust God when He reshapes you into something beautiful.

The Potter does not want to destroy us, though we may think that at times. Especially when we are being crushed. God loves us beyond anything we can humanly comprehend. He is our Maker and knows what is best for each and every one of us.

Clay pots look strong, but we can easily break and chip. Many factors contribute to our cracks. What are we filling ourselves with? What are we thinking on? What are our priorities? Clay pots are designed to be containers.

We are not meant to be empty vessels. We are designed with eternity in mind by The Potter. If we allow God to mold us, and shape us, and use us for His glory than we are fulfilling our purpose. Yes, sometimes we will be crushed back down into a lump. Sometimes, we do it to ourselves and the cracks appear and ultimately we crumble.

God never throws the clay away.

No matter how many cracks, and broken pieces are in your life, He can make beauty out of your brokenness. Trust God.

Love you all,

Meghan

If you need prayer just drop me an email from my contact page.

Photo by Anthony Shkraba on Pexels.com

 

Obedience, Prayer

Speak Lord, Your Servant is Listening

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There are so many voices in our lives telling us who we are, what to believe, what to do, and what to think. Social media, news, podcasts, Youtube, movies, shows, and every form of media give us dozens of different messages every single day.

Like this

Don’t like this

I’m right

You’re wrong

How dare you

You’re not good enough

You’re too good

Your views are wrong

Your views are right

You’re bad

You’re good

You don’t care

You care too much

Do more

Do less

Buy more

Buy less

And it just goes on, and on, and on. 

We are being bombarded in our connected world, with other people’s opinions. Most of these people we do not personally know. Yet, they have influence, and can be quite persuasive. We start to believe everything we read, or hear, or watch on the news about ourselves, and the world, and our future. We need to be very careful what we allow in our head. Of course be informed, watch the news–if that’s your thing. But go to the source, God, before you make a decision on who, or what, or where, or why.

How much time do we spend listening to God? How much time do we spend listening to all the other voices? What influences us and our decisions? If you are a Christ Follower, there is one voice that needs to be the loudest, the Lord’s. 

Many years ago there was a child, who listened to God’s voice, and did what He said. Samuel was just a boy when he first heard the Lord’s voice. According to the historian Josephus, Samuel was around 11 years old. God spoke directly to a kid. He was no ordinary kid though. Samuel was set apart for the Lord’s purposes.

Hannah, Samuel’s mother, had prayed for years to have a child. God answered her prayers by giving her Samuel. Hannah gave Samuel back to the Lord. 

She said to her husband, “After the boy is weaned, I will take him and present him before the Lord, and he will live there always.” 1 Samuel 1:22, NIV 

Hannah brings her very young child to the house of the Lord at Shiloh. She then hands Samuel over to Eli, the high priest, to raise him. (1 Samuel 1:24-28)

Each year his mother made him a little robe and took it to him when she went up with her husband to offer the annual sacrifice. 1 Samuel 2:19, NIV 

Samuel only sees his mother once a year. She must have loved him dearly to leave him at the temple with Eli. I bet Hannah took great care in making those robes each year. 

Meanwhile, the boy Samuel grew up in the presence of the Lord. 1 Samuel 2:21b, NIV

And the boy Samuel continued to grow in stature and in favor with the Lord and with people. 1 Samuel 2:26, NIV

Samuel keeps growing both physically and spiritually before the Lord. He’s just 11 years old when something remarkable happens. Samuel hears the Lord’s voice. 

The boy Samuel ministered before the Lord under Eli.

In those days the word of the Lord was rare; there were not many visions. 

2 One night Eli, whose eyes were becoming so weak that he could barely see, was lying down in his usual place. 3 The lamp of God had not yet gone out, and Samuel was lying down in the house of the Lord, where the ark of God was. 4 Then the Lord called Samuel.

Samuel answered, “Here I am.” 5 And he ran to Eli and said, “Here I am; you called me.”

But Eli said, “I did not call; go back and lie down.” So he went and lay down.

6 Again the Lord called, “Samuel!” And Samuel got up and went to Eli and said, “Here I am; you called me.”

“My son,” Eli said, “I did not call; go back and lie down.” 1 Samuel 3:1-7, NIV

Samuel hears the voice a third time and goes to Eli again. Finally, Eli realizes that the Lord was calling the boy. Eli tells Samuel to go lie down and if he hears the voice to say, “Speak Lord, for your servant is listening”. Then the Lord stood there and called, “Samuel! Samuel!”.

Then Samuel said, “Speak, for your servant is listening.” (1 Samuel 3:8-10, NIV)

I love Samuel’s eagerness. He ran to Eli the first time he heard the Lord call him. Samuel didn’t say he was too tired, or just ignore the voice. Samuel ran to Eli. He didn’t know it was the Lord at first, yet Samuel was obedient. 

God is personal when dealing with us. He called Samuel by name, twice. I can picture the Lord smiling at Samuel as He called for him. God loved Samuel deeply, and He loves you and I deeply too. 

Years later, Samuel will anoint a young shepherd boy, David, as the King of Israel. Jesus comes from the line of King David. (Matthew 1:1)

It’s pretty easy to take for granted that God wants to speak to us and actually use us in His plan. He sees the big picture. God sees the entire picture from beginning to end. (Isaiah 46:10) What may seem small to us could be one tiny part of something big God is doing.

God wants to speak to us today. Every Believer in the Lord Jesus Christ has the gift of the Holy Spirit inside of us. (1 Corinthians 6:19) We also have God’s Word, the Bible. 

The Lord has something to tell you today. Seek Him. Spend time with Him. Run to Him, like Samuel did. Make His voice the loudest in your world. Listen to His voice.

Love you all,

Meghan 

 

Heavenly Father,

You are awesome, Holy God. Thank you that you still speak today. May we hear your voice loud and clear above the noise of the world, above the lies, above the distractions. Speak Lord, for your servants are listening.

In Jesus name,

Amen