I Don’t Want The Crumbs

In my grandma’s house, on top of her piano, are old black and white pictures of her grandparents, great grandparents, cousins, etc… She has told me their names before and how I’m related to them but honestly, I couldn’t tell you if I was paid to (Sorry Nanny).
I do remember though, that whenever she talks about the people in the pictures, I can tell that they mean alot to her. Because she knew them personally, for herself, firsthand. The difference between my relationship with them, and my grandma’s reationship with them is that she knew them personally, while I just know second-hand acounts, stories, and basically just a brief overview of who they are. 


When I was first saved, I wouldn’t study the Bible for myself. My spiritual life was barely surviving on devotionals sent to my email each morning, seeing a verse against a pretty background on Instagram, and reading a cheesy, cliche, christian quote on Facebook. While those things can be good, they can’t sustain me a healthy relationship with God. 

I love to listening to John Piper’s Ask Pastor John videos on Youtube. They are short, thought provoking, and are filled with good Biblical principles that I can apply to my life. But I have noticed that instead of going and reading the Bible for myself to see what God has to show me, I will scrolll through Youtube and find a John Piper message that I feel like applies to me for that day. 

Going to church and listening to sermons is a good thing, but when you start to depend on the preacher to be your only line of communication between you and God, it isn’t so much a good thing anymore.

Whenever I tell people about Jesus, I want to speak of him like my grandma does with the pictures on her piano. I want to have a genuine care and relationship. A first hand account of my relationship with Him, not John Piper’s relationship with Him, or my pastor’s relationship with him, or even what a devotional says about my relationship with Him. I want a first hand account, personal relationship with Him. 

Psalm 119:103 “How sweet are your words to my taste, sweeter than honey to my mouth!”

Yes, reading daily devotions, listening to sermons, reading clever christian quotes can be a good thing. They can feed my spiritual life and sustain me. But in comparison for actually reading and studying the Bible for myself, those are just the crumbs. I don’t want to live off of the crumbs from the Bread of Life!

John 6:35 “Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst.”

So whenever I tell an unbeliever about Jesus Christ, I want them to hear it in my voice that I know Him. Not just second-hand stories, but personally know Him like my grandma knew the people in the pictures on her piano. Why settle for just the crumbs when I can open up the Bible and read what God has to say to me for the day:) 

I Don’t Love My Husband

“Tj when we get home do you care taking Moose out to go potty while I hop in the shower?” (moose is our puppy)

“Sure.”

….. It wasn’t that he said sure. But it was the way he said it.  

“Whatever Tj.”

We got home, he took Moose outside and I got in the shower seriously debating on whether or not to leave him any hot water (I’m a monster, I know.) 

While I was in there debating on whether or not to give into my pride I remembered something I had read earlier today in A Woman’s Walk With GOD by Elizabeth George.

“Love is the sacrifice of self.” 

Earlier today when I was reading that book in my room, cup of coffee in my hand. It seemed like a great concept and all. But now a couple hours later, I’m not so sure…

 The truth is, I knew this for awhile. God is love. God sent his only Son to die. Jesus sacrificed his life for us. As a Christian I am suppose to show His love to everyone around me. It just never really clicked until today that love is sacrificing my pride, my comfort, my  energy, my time, my rest, my wants, my needs, my opinions, my desires, for someone elses. 

Matthew 20:28 “even as the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”

True love is not self seeking.

William Barclay said “Love means that no matter what a man may do to us by way of insult or injury or humiliation we will never seek anything else but his highest good…never..seek anything but the best even for those who seek the worst for us.”

Ephesians 5:22 “Wives, be subject to your own husbands, as to the Lord.”

As  wife I am called to put Tj’s needs before mine. Not because I love him, but because I am suppose to demonstrate God’s love for him. The only way I will ever be able to truly love someone is if it is from God. Not only that, but because I love God, I should want to love others.  

Maybe you don’t have a husband. But if you are a Christian, this still applies to you. We are called to love our neighbors, our enemies, our friends, our family, that mean lady in the checkout line, the annoying co-worker, the bully at school or work, etc…. (John 13:34) (Matthew 5:43-45)

But if you aren’t saved and you never received Christ into your heart, then you don’t know what true love is. You can’t truly love someone. 

Whenever Jesus died on the cross to take the payment for our sins, and He rose again in three days, He showed us the greatest act of self-sacrificing love. He literally sacrficed himself for our sake. If you want self sacrificing love in your life, if you want to love someone with a self-sacrificing love, you can only do that if you received it from God himself by admiting that you are a sinner worthy of death, and that you believe Jesus was the Son of God and rose from the dead. 

Romans 3:23-24 “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus.”

So, yes I love Tj. But I don’t always love him like I suppose to.

I don’t think I had a choice in falling in love with TJ (that was God’s plan). But  I do have a choice in loving him everyday with a self sacrificing love that can only come from God. 

When The Whipped Cream Goes Flying

I’m unnaturally clumsy. Not only am I clumsy, but I also have terrible luck. Bad things just always seem to happen to me that never happen to normal people. It is almost like life is a bully and I’m the little kid whose glasses are taped together. Maybe I’m having a pity party, but even my husband admits that bad things always seem to happen to me. Particularly involving drinks.

Today Tj took me to a local boutique to buy a sweatshirt that I had been on the fence about buying for awhile. This was not just any sweatshirt, it was a “dreamy soft” (that’s what the tag said), faded blue, vintage, kind of girl-next-door looking sweatshirt. 

All for just 34.98 

Of course as soon as I got in the car I ripped the tags off and put it on:) It really was dreamy soft! 

Anyways, fast forward 10 minutes later to the Mcdonald’s drive through, Tj got him a strawberry milkshake and me a hot chocolate. 

I opened up the flap to take a sip….and whipped cream came flying out all over my face, my hair, and…. My new sweatshirt. 

See? Bad luck. 

And I got so irritated and angry when it happened. At first I was mad at the guy at Mcdonald’s who made the hot chocolate.  Then I got mad at myself for spending that much money on a stupid shirt. Then I got mad at God for always allowing this kind of stuff to happen to me. 

Something that I struggle with, and always have, is anger. With a flip of a switch I can be the happiest, goofiest girl around, to being angry and bitter. And it’s always because of little stuff like flying whip cream that makes me turn. And it is normally taken out on those I love the most. Probably because I know they will always love me, no matter how ugly I can get. 

While I was sitting in the car with whipped cream dripping from my face and waiting for Tj to get back with napkins (Mcdonald’s forgot the napkins, imagine that;) God brought to my mind the story of Jonah. Growing up I knew his story, but not really. All I had been taught was that if you don’t do what God wants you too, you will probably end up in a whale’s belly. But what I didn’t learn was how the book of Jonah ended. 

Jonah finally preached to Nineveh, and they repented. But then he got angry because he hated the people of Nineveh. (4:1-4)

He left the city and sat down to watch what will happen to the city and God made a plant to grow up beside Jonah, and give him shade so he would be comfortable.Jonah was super happy! After all, he did just preach to a people he hated and been through the belly of a whale and back. A little shade, I’m sure, was much appreciated.  (4:5-6)

But then God took away the plant. A worm attacked it, and it withered then died. (4:7)

Jonah got angry. “It is better for me to die than to live.” (4:8) 

(What a brat, right?)

Then God answers him, “Do you well to be angry at the plant?” (4:9)

Was Jonah benefitting anything at all from being angry at a plant for living and dying? Was his situation changing any? Not at all. Now I think that if I was in his situation, I would be like “You know what God, you’re right. This isn’t doing me any good!” 

But every week something will happen, and I flip. Whether it’s me spilling a drink on myself or Tj leaving his kleenex in the living room floor. I always get angry. And I never benefit from it. In fact, I normally lose from it. 

Jonah answered God and said “Yes, I do well to be angry, angry enough to die.” (4:9)

I wish I could say that me and Jonah don’t have anything in common. No, I never have been swallowed by a whale. But I have gotten angry about things that I have no control over. About things that happen in everyday life to everyday people. I have gotten angry at those I love most and treated them like they mean nothing to me. I have asked God what is the point of life and why does He keep allowing bad stuff to happen to me.  Me and Jonah have more in common than I would like there to be.

James 1:19-20 “Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger; for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God.”

Looking back I can see how far I have come from where I used to be. There is alot of times that I give into anger and I know there will be more. But it gives me hope seeing how God has changed my heart from what it once was to what it is now. 

So next time the whip cream goes flying all over my brand new shirt (which I hope it doesn’t) I will ask myself “Do it well to be angry?” Because more likely than not, giving into my anger will only make things worse. 

I Was Angry At God, For Being God.

This morning I got up and typed a blog post about who God is. About how Christians only focus on a couple of God’s attributes. How we don’t truly know who God is.
I really felt God moving me to write that post. He was working on my heart as I typed and I couldn’t wait to get to the library later and post it (I don’t have wifi at my house so I have to go to the library to upload).

A couple hours later I was there and went to upload my blog when my computer had crashed. It has been struggling for a year now and I knew I really needed a new one but I just kept putting it off. Long story short, my blog post I was so excited about had disappeared into cyber-space, never to return. I tried everything to retrieve the file but it was corrupted.

I left the library very frustrated and very angry. I was angry at God. The very same God I had written about that morning, I was now angry at and hurt by.
Why would He give me something to write about that morning and put it on my heart to share with others, if I wasn’t going to be able to upload it anyways? Why even put having this blog on my heart when I can’t even upload a blog post?

I began to doubt His love for me and to question Him. He is God, He could fix my computer and retrieve the file if He really wanted to, right? He could have allowed my computer to last just a few more hours and it would have been okay.
I started to ask Him if it was because I wasn’t good enough. If it was because I was being prideful or trying to do it for my own glory. Maybe deep down inside I had some sin that I hadn’t repented of or I had an idol in my life. Maybe that was His punishment on me.
I was so angry and hurt. Maybe you are reading this and thinking “It was just a blog post, just chill out?” Which is true, there are more important things to get upset over than a stupid blog. But I think it was the fact that here I was, trying to serve God, trying to do what He was laying on my heart to do, and He wasn’t allowing me to.

How dare He.

Thinking over the post that I had written this morning, I was talking about how there are attributes of God that we don’t ever talk about. He is just and loving (which is normally what most Christians focus on). But He is also patient, merciful, omnipresent, He isn’t contained by time or space. He is gracious, all-knowing, transcendent, immanent, infinite, immutable, good, truthful, and righteous.

He is 100% just, 100% loving, 100% merciful, 100% gracious, 100% truthful, 100% righteous simultaneously 100% of the time.

One thing I learned today is that He is all of those things,… yet He is also God.
This morning I had forgotten His most important attribute of all…

HE IS GOD.

I think I forgot that today. Yes, He could have fixed my computer and retrieved that corrupted file and allowed me to upload that post and everything would’ve gone according to my plan. But He had other plans. Did I accept them like I should have? Absolutely not. I am ashamed that I got angry at God. That I doubted Him. But that is where grace steps in. (Remember? God is gracious) I have repented and I am forgiven.

Maybe there is something in your life that has happened and you are angry at God over. A bad health report, a family member passed away, you lost a job or job opportunity. The Bible doesn’t tell us exactly why God allows those things to happen to us. That is not for us to know. But it does say that He has our best interest in mind.

Jeremiah 29:11 “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.”

I don’t know why my computer crashed today. But I do know that I learned through it. I know more about what God is like now than I did before writing about it this morning. He is God! He truly is transcendent. Above our knowledge and understanding.

Isaiah 55:8-9 “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts higher than your thoughts.”

Don’t forget that God is God. The one God. The true God. The only God. My God.

When God Remains Silent

When God Is Silent
Psalm 83:1 “O God, do not keep silence; do not hold your peace or be still, O God!”

Lately it seems every time I sit down to write a devotional, or I try to have time with God I ended up leaving discouraged. How can I help others and share to them what God has been working on me about, when God has been silent? Do you ever pray sometimes and feel like your prayers just bounce right back to you? It is really discouraging and depressing.

Whenever I reach out to God and my hands come back empty, I want to give up and forget about it. I want to find fulfillment in something else that is for certain going to bring me satisfaction. Whenever I leave empty handed I begin to doubt God. I begin to doubt His love for me. Like maybe I am not good enough right now for Him to speak to me or work on my heart. I start to get the mindset that I can somehow earn His attention.
Whenever God becomes silent He always seems to pick the worst times. Lately, we have been looking for a house, I have prayed and prayed and asked God to show us where He wants us to be, to give us confirmation somehow about what decision to make. Yet He remains quiet.

“…..do not hold your peace or be still, O God!” If there is something I need right now, it is peace from God. Because all I feel lately is stress and self-doubt.
Why would God remain silent when I am reaching and grasping and begging for His presence? When I desperately feel like I need Him now more than ever?

Matthew 7:7 says “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.”

That verse is a promise right? Then why don’t I feel like I’m finding anything? Why do I come back empty handed.
This is how I have felt for the past week and a half. Maybe, you have felt the same way. But what if every time I wanted to hear something from God, I did? What if every time I started seeking Him, I found Him. Just like that. Would I have any faith? Would I still put forth effort every day to show God that I earnestly want to know Him more? Or would I only seek Him when I felt like I needed Him, when He became my last option.

I learned today that Matthew 7:7 is a promise. If I seek Him, I will find Him. But it might not be in the time I would like for it to be. I might have to keep my hand reached out longer than I wish or than I feel comfortable doing. I might have to search and search and come up empty handed and discouraged. But in His timing, He will show Himself and the reunion will be that much more satisfying. How can I know the worth of what I find unless I search for it? The most expensive, valuable, and beautiful jewels are the ones that take effort and time to discover. They are hard to find.

When God remains silent it might be for a day, a week, two weeks, a month… maybe years. Whether it is a prayer request or just a daily study. But don’t lose faith. If you seek Him you will find Him. That is a promise from God Almighty! It can be discouraging coming back empty handed, I know. The past week I have been in the depths of despair because I keep coming back empty from my quiet time with God. But I know that I will find Him, because He loves me and you enough to make Himself accsessible to us through Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit.

So next time God remains silent don’t lose faith. In fact, have more faith because you know that you will find. And don’t go looking elsewhere for something to fill that place where God is suppose to be. The pleasures of this world are quick, easy, and will quickly fade away. But what God gives you is everlasting, and fulfilling. It just might take some time and faith while God remains silent, but when He does speak it will be sweeter and more fulfilling than ever before.