Out Of Place

I said it to myself and it has become evident. David is one of my faves along w my gangsta boo, (I wanna say spirit animal but ion believe in that but the sentiment kinda fits. 🤷🏾‍♀️🤦🏾‍♀️😂🤣) who I relate to immensely, Simon Barjona Peter.

The children of Israel were at war.

As king, David was supposed to be at war. He wasn’t. He was at the house. Well palace.

He was up on the roof just hanging out. I mean. Friend. You could have at least been praying. Nope.

Due to what was about to happen, I imagine he was possible preening like a peacock. Just looking around at all of what he was in charge of.

Definitely not acting like what his name means: a man after God’s own heart.

Like. My guy? He knew what he should have been doing. He knew what his position and relationship with God demanded. But buddy was definitely human and had a whole bunch of human moments.

He saw this fine woman bathing. He was like “I gotta have her!”

Pretty sure buddy asked no questions about who she was and if she was married. He was the king so she couldn’t refuse.

Sis gets PREGNANT. I’m sure this was him 🤯. Cuz buddy found out not only was she married, but she was married to a man who was off fighting in the war on his behalf.

Instead of admitting what happened and trying to fix it by inviting God into the disaster, he calls her husband home with the hope of them doing what married people do and passing the baby off as his.

Uriah, that’s the husband, is so honorable, follows protocol so well, he won’t even sleep inside the house. Buddy was focused and in war mode. He slept on the daggone porch.

David has got to be like this now. 🤯🤯🤯🤯 Nothing HE has done to fix something that should have never happened has worked.

Now he comes up with another plan. He sends Uriah back and gives instructions to have him positioned where he can be killed. Sir. What?!

I’m pretty sure this is the same man who, while he was running for his life after being anointed as king but before being seated on the throne, wrote a song (Psalm) that said no matter where he goes the Lord is there.

This is why I said we gotta build altars. The amnesia of it all.

Uriah dies and this clears the way for David to be with his wife Bathsheeba.

Again. At no point does the man chosen by God to be king, who came from being an overlooked by his family shepherd boy in a pasture, to a person who killed a lion, bear, and several giants in the name of the Lord with a leather slingshot and stones, to a victorious warrior fighting to stay alive, consult God or his prophet.

God gave him plenty of time and space to get it together. At each point, each decision, he just kept making bad ones.

So. God sends the prophet Nathan to David. He GATHERS him. He tells him about himself. He puts him in check. Then he tells him the baby is finna die.

David is properly displeased with himself. He also doesn’t like the fact that the child won’t live. He makes a good choice. Finally.

He puts on sackcloth and ashes and fasts. He tries to get God to change his mind.

The people thought my guy was crazy. It didn’t work. They were nervous to tell him about the baby. When David finally found out the baby died, he got up, washed himself, and went and ate.

Here’s the thing. My family (it’s just one person lol. That’s what he called me so we goin with it.) preached and taught a couple of things that are appropriate for this here blog.

In the message I heard first about Shalom (peace), he said that some of us didn’t intend to sin. But, because of life, we did.

Then, in a Bible class about discipleship, he said he got saved young and hasn’t done everything right. But his posture has always been holiness. So, when he made mistakes, there was his mistake not his pattern. He told us to posture ourselves to pursue holiness. When you are pursuing purity and holiness, the pursuit itself is holy. When we come short God gives us grace when we are reaching for the mark.

And then the Sunday before I wrote this, my pastor said he isn’t teaching perfection because that hasn’t worked. He is teaching pursuit. He told us to pursue holiness.

Ya girl can relate to her family.

I got saved super young. At one point I was so sure that I would remain chaste until marriage. I was told to be careful to say what I would and wouldn’t do. I was so sure. That warning was so appropriate.

I allowed loneliness, how I was treated, what other people had going on, and the unnatural and unnecessary pressure to be in a relationship to cause me to fall and sin more times than I care to count.

I was disappointed in myself. I sat myself down in church and stopped the lil stuff I was doing.

Then I graduated to full blown fornication-sexual relations outside of marriage. I didn’t plan on it, didn’t necessarily want to, but I went with it when it happened. Maybe the thought process was why not? I was already doing other stuff. This was attention that I wasn’t getting it from the people I should have received it from. I was ashamed and disappointed. But not enough to stop.

I ended up in what now is a shocking and dangerous situation. It was like I was out of body for the few months this went down. I wasn’t fearful enough when someone was chasing me through the streets in the rougher neighborhood I was in. I wasn’t selfish enough or disgusted enough or displeased enough or in possession of enough self esteem when I was told to wait for him for what had to have been at least an hour.

When one takes their eyes off of Jesus and what they should be doing, danger is waiting.

I managed to keep it together for 13 years. I mean, when someone comes across the pulpit and says your name and then says God says you’re dirty, filthy, stinking, and nasty (something like that) and don’t know what you’re up to? You kinda gotta get it together. Well. You don’t HAVE to. But I chose to. And I’m glad I did. Cuz the consequences of continuing in that sin? I know me and what could have happened. Nothing nice.

Listening to the wrong people and the pandemic was a recipe for disaster. It wasn’t as bad as it could have been but it was worse than it should have been. I’d love to say that was the end of the story. But it wasn’t. It will be now. Tuh. The flattery was what did it. Love bombing (saying a bunch of things and being super nice at first before being…not so great). For all three of these jokers.

I got caught up AGAIN a year and a half after the first pandemic problem. However, I cut it off far sooner. I’d love to say I was unscathed. I think the last time was the worst because of what happened and how utterly reckless I was with my safety. Thank God for His hedge of protection.

And I guess, just to make sure I meant what I said when I said I was ready for a husband who would find me working like Ruth and be running around the church or rolling on the floor, I met a person in the parking lot of an auto parts store. The flattery. Again. This time? I was unmoved and not really taken by it.

Despite sharing the same doctrinal (Biblical) beliefs about salvation, dude had some sus thoughts. Then his words and actions didn’t line up. More love bombing. He had to GO. And did. After like two or three convos and a disappearance and reappearance. When he came back after a week he said he missed me. Sir. Go away. Nah playa. Bye.

I appreciate all that God is and His forgiveness. The fact that there is no shame and condemnation (a lil Scripture hunt for ya). EVEN when I know better. Even when I put myself in places and situations, He still looked out for me.

That’s why, despite how I feel about it, I’m gone give Him my total and complete yes. I’m gone go where my flesh doesn’t really want to go. I’m gone do what my flesh doesn’t really want to do. I owe Him. He didn’t bring me through all of this just for me. It was so that others, via tests that turned into a testimony that is a testament to Him as I keep saying, would know and see that the same God that did it for the people in the Bible is still doing it for people today.

Go be great. Someone is counting on YOU!

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Working While Wounded

Imagine a soldier who was shot, impaled with an arrow, sliced with a spear.

They are likely losing blood.

They are likely staggering.

They are likely starting to become confused and disoriented.

They are relying on their training and their instinct.

Adrenaline has likely kicked in.

They are fighting to the death.

The Bible talks about weapons of warfare (go look the Scripture up. I’m on my computer for once so no emojis this time. :)).

The Bible talks about putting on the whole armor of God.

The breastplate of righteousness.

The helmet of salvation.

The sword of the Spirit which is the Word of God.

The shield of faith.

Loins girt (waist wrapped perhaps) about with truth.

Feet shod (chiiii. covered I suppose. A translation other than King James will probably define these. I’m going with what I know.) with the preparation of the Gospel of peace.

The Bible also talks about weapons forming but not prospering.

However, Jesus said offenses will come.

What. Do. You. Do when you are living right, working, serving, and the people you are called to, the people you are working with, the people leading you, life, wounds you?

I’ll tell you what I’ve done.

Sometimes I’ve tucked tail and bounced.

Sometimes I’ve continued to work.

You already know which choice was better.

You know the ultimate example of working while wounded?

My precious Savior Jesus.

Before He even got to the cross, He started working.

He was in the Garden of Gethsemane with some of his disciples.

Judas. A man He CHOSE. A man who knew Him. A man who walked with Him. A man who saw who He was. Sold him out. Literally. Took money to tell the authorities where He could be found.

My gangsta friend and one of my FAVES, Peter, took out his sword and cut the ear off of one of the men who came to arrest Jesus.

Pause. Notice I said Peter. Not Simon. This man had already been tasked with building the Kingdom of God. He was already warned that Jesus was going to the cross. Maybe he was feeling some type of way because Jesus told him that he was going to deny Him. I don’t know what was going on in my fave’s head.

Nevertheless, he has now created a situation for Jesus to work in while wounded. Jesus reattaches the man’s ear and then goes on to begin the journey to my salvation. Whew. That.

Eventually, Peter has followed to see what is going on and denies Jesus. The cock crows. JESUS TURNS AND LOOKS AT PETER?!

Mans can’t catch a break. First Judas and then Peter. Bruh. My fave. I couldn’t imagine the sorrow.

So now, Jesus has made His way onto the cross. He is in the middle of two other people. They start having a conversation. He forgives one of them. As He is hanging to lay down His life. Cuz He didn’t die.

His moms and the disciples come. He tells John that Mary is now his mother. He tells Mary that John is now her son.

The man is already working by staying on the cross when He has the power to come down. He does ONE other thing I want to highlight while suffering to save me. AAAAAAAAAHHHH!!!!

He prays for the people. He says father forgive them for they know not what they do.

My God.

The ultimate worker working while wounded.

He knew His job. He knew His role. He fought to the death.

He fought death.

My good Lord.

He died so that I wouldn’t have to die.

Sure, I have to die to my flesh.

But an eternal death?

That will NEVER be my testimony because my Jesus worked while wounded.

What I endure is light affliction (so most of what I have said including this is Bible. Happy hunting.).

I’m gone pick up my weapons and fight.

I’m gonna follow the One who showed me how.

I’m gonna endure hardness as a good soldier.

I am going to fight the good fight of faith.

When people fight, they have taken up arms for a cause they believe in.

I believe in the cause of Christ.

I will fight me and whoever to ensure that Jesus reaches the masses.

He deserves it.

They deserve to know Him.

Why?

When my pillow was drenched in tears, He fought for me.

When I wanted Him to snuff out this life He died for, He fought for me.

When I acted as though I was alone and had nobody to turn to, He fought for me.

When I turned to sin as though He wasn’t there with me, He fought for me.

When I was disobedient despite our relationship, He fought for me.

When I wanted to run away from who He called and purposed me to be, He fought for me.

When I got amnesia about all that we endured, He fought for me.

I owe Him EVERYTHING.

All of me.

To stand and fight every battle.

Despite every dart and wound that comes my way.

He fought for me so I could fight for Him.

He fought for me so I could fight for others attached to me.

I endured all of what I did because He was teaching my hands to war.

War in the words He gives me to say.

War by lifting my hands in praise and worship no matter how I feel.

War in the prayers I pray.

Lissen. I feel like I could stay here all day.

But I can’t.

Cuz attention spans are a thing.

GET UP AND FIGHT.

Let Him teach you how to war.

Don’t stay where you are.

Don’t just be wounded and die.

Go be great. Someone is counting on it.

Two Things Can Be True

I’ve been saying two things can be true at one time a lot lately.

The reference for that is the woman in 1 or 2 Kings (like I like to say-go search so you can read it for yourself and know that I’m not making it up) welcomed the prophet Elisha into her home.

She was minding all of her business and being hospitable to the man of God.

She didn’t have a child nor did she ask him to pray that her womb would be open. But mans was like you gone have a baby.

And she did.

So this boy is growing and living and thriving.

Then bam. He dies.

Sis was like naaaaaaaah.

Go get me an animal. I’m finna ride out. I’m finna go find this man.

People are worried. She starts out by saying all will be well.

Ma’am. What? *insert Nick Young’s confused face with question marks meme*

Yo baby is dead and you talmbout all will be well?

What I didn’t say is that before she left, she put the boy in the room they had prepared for Elisha for when he was there.

As she got closer to him, she changed her words. Instead of saying all would be well she said all is well.

Whew. The closer she got to the one with the solution the more faith she had to believe.

Sis found him and was like “playa, playa from the Himalayas. This child I didn’t ask you for is dead.”

Elisha was the armor bearer aka assistant for Elijah. He kept this practice up and has a dude named Gehazi.

Gehazi is the reason for alla this. He’s the one who told Elisha sis didn’t have a baby when E was trying to repay their kindness.

G was mad rude and tried to send her away. E was like “nah son. Let her be.”

So E sent G ahead to the house with his staff (wooden cane thing) to try to revive the kid.

Pause. There is so much in that sentence. Jesus died on a piece of wood and revived us for all eternity. Staffs are used by shepherds. David used one and I believe wrote Psalm 23. Jesus is described as a shepherd. So many things in the Old Testament point to Jesus. Also, the disciples attempted to cast out a devil/heal a kid and failed (ion try hard with some of this so y’all will go study for yourself!).

G put the staff on the boy’s face and nothing happened.

E was already on his way behind G with moms.

E goes into his room with the boy and closes the door. Then he prayed.

Next, he does a sophisticated version of CPR. He put all of his body parts, including his mouth, on the boy’s. The boy warmed up.

E left the room and walked the house. He went back and did his lil CPR thing again. The child sneezed seven times then opened his eyes.

Omg. This baby came back to life like Jesus and Lazarus. I’m undone. And let’s not even get lost in the seven of it all.

The woman lost a son she didn’t even ask for. Surely she was vexed and grieved. But he was already a miracle. And she knew how to gain direct access to the Miracle Worker through his servant.

I’d like to think she built an altar. Much like I wrote about Abraham. She knew enough about God, in what was surely distressing, to know He would work it out.

This season is familiar yet…tuh. Two things are definitely true. But something I said on the phone led me to this refrain once again. It reminded me of this woman.

As long as my ACTIONS match my faith and not my feelings.

I’m allowed to feel a way. I said in that convo that even Jesus felt a way. He came to die and still wanted, in His flesh, to avoid the cross.

But He knew He had to do it. So, while something else was also true, He did it.

I know why. So, while my feelings are true, this is the way I have to take. He’s never failed before and He won’t start now. I’m gonna go to my altar.

Go be great. Someone’s counting on it.

Love is Part Deux

Love is patient
Love is kind
Love laid down its life
Love denied itself
Love put on what it hates
Love forgave me
Love chased me
Love waited for me
Love told me no for a better yes
Love won’t let me go
Love won’t leave me alone
Love won’t give up on me
Love sees me
Love hears me
Love chooses me
Love is relentless
Love is perfect

Words, Words, Words

All I had as a draft was the title. Ima see what I come up with.

Words matter. Sentence structure matters. Semantics. The English language is one of the hardest to learn for a person for whom English is not their first language. So many words sound the same but are spelled the same. The silent letters. The rules. Sure, for English speakers, other languages may be difficult. I learned Spanish. Their rules make a lot more sense than some of those I remember from my English classes. There are a multitude, a litany of exceptions for our words. For the most part, Spanish rules are pretty constant.

Lissen. Those last couple of sentences are sending me somewhere I cannot go. Lol. Just ponder them and see what you come up with. 😉

The Bible says that life and death are in the power of the tongue (Proverbs 18:21). James 3 is a whole situation about the tongue and our mouths. He talks about how small they are and how much fire they can kindle. The thing that I thought of is his question in verse 11: Doth a fountain send forth at the same place sweet water and bitter.

When reading it to put a couple of other things here I was also reminded of verses 9 and 10: Therewith bless we God, even the Father; and therewith curse we men, which are made after the similitude of God. Out of the same mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not so to be.

God spoke and created the earth. Go catch that first chapter of Genesis. Throughout the ENTIRE Bible, the words, promises of God and His vessels, Jesus shift lives and entire nations. Over and over again.

My thing is this. God breathed His breath into man in Genesis. Jesus promised us power to do greater works he did (John 14:12). He stated that things could be spoken to or spoke to them (fig tree, mountains, demons, wind and sea). So, if God spoke, Jesus spoke and promised us greater works than him, if we speak, we have the ability to have what we say.

It is so very crucial as believers to only speak positively and what God says. When I say what God says, I mean speak His word. The Bible. And, if He speaks to you personally, say that as well. Saying what God says isn’t 100% literal though. We have to speak well of, about, and to each other. With kind words. That is the essence of His Word and those who wrote under His inspiration.

Many of us were called things contrary to the plan of God for our lives. Many of us were called things contrary to who God made us. People didn’t know better or they passed their issues onto us. Some of us began to become what others said we were. Some of us began to call ourselves what others called us.

I thought about that thang one day. And you know what I did? I put the Word on it! I bound it because Jesus said what I bind on earth would be bound in heaven. I loosed what God thinks, what He says because he said what I loose on earth would be loosed in heaven (all bof of em are Matthew 18:18). I cursed it at the root and sent it back to the pit of hell where it belongs (churchy phrase with likely origins to that fig tree mentioned abouve).

I submit to you today, that if you are struggling with your words, study to be quiet (1 Thessalonians 4:11). Study the Word. Say things the way they should be said and say only what should be said. Not idle, wasteful things. I’m working on this myself as I believe I stated elsewhere.

If you are struggling with the words of others, study the word to find out who God and His vessels say we are. This. This. This. This. And this are great places to start.

Proverbs 5 The Message (MSG) version)

I’s tired boss. I’m just copying and pasting the whole thing with some thoughts after. Kinda like yesterday. Kinda not.

1-2 Dear friend, pay close attention to this, my wisdom;
    listen very closely to the way I see it.
Then you’ll acquire a taste for good sense;
    what I tell you will keep you out of trouble.

The author is letting us know that he knows what he’s talking about and it is beneficial to listen to his words.

3-6 The lips of a seductive woman are oh so sweet,
    her soft words are oh so smooth.
But it won’t be long before she’s gravel in your mouth,
    a pain in your gut, a wound in your heart.
She’s dancing down the primrose path to Death;
    she’s headed straight for Hell and taking you with her.
She hasn’t a clue about Real Life,
    about who she is or where she’s going.

This makes me think of Delilah and what happened to Samson… I don’t think this is just about or can be applied to just a woman. I feel like this is a metaphor for sin or distractions, including the wrong people.

7-14 So, my friend, listen closely;
    don’t treat my words casually.
Keep your distance from such a woman;
    absolutely stay out of her neighborhood.
You don’t want to squander your wonderful life,
    to waste your precious life among the hardhearted.
Why should you allow strangers to take advantage of you?
    Why be exploited by those who care nothing for you?
You don’t want to end your life full of regrets,
    nothing but sin and bones,
Saying, “Oh, why didn’t I do what they told me?
    Why did I reject a disciplined life?
Why didn’t I listen to my mentors,
    or take my teachers seriously?
My life is ruined!
    I haven’t one blessed thing to show for my life!”

Samesies with a side of regret.

15-16 Do you know the saying, “Drink from your own rain barrel,
    draw water from your own spring-fed well”?
It’s true. Otherwise, you may one day come home
    and find your barrel empty and your well polluted.

The original minding my business drinking my water. Lol.

17-20 Your spring water is for you and you only,
    not to be passed around among strangers.
Bless your fresh-flowing fountain!
    Enjoy the wife you married as a young man!
Lovely as an angel, beautiful as a rose—
    don’t ever quit taking delight in her body.
    Never take her love for granted!
Why would you trade enduring intimacies for cheap thrills with a whore?
    for dalliance with a promiscuous stranger?

It as though he is saying you are the only you, live your life, worry about what your are tasked to do and who who are tasked to do it with.

21-23 Mark well that God doesn’t miss a move you make;
    he’s aware of every step you take.
The shadow of your sin will overtake you;
    you’ll find yourself stumbling all over yourself in the dark.
Death is the reward of an undisciplined life;
    your foolish decisions trap you in a dead end.

God is watching and if you don’t live right death will be your portion.

Uuuuuuuh. I read it. Truly. I may come back and edit it with thoughts. But, I don’t have it in me right now. Lol. If you only knew… I’m just proud that I read it today! 🙂 *and did on 1-7*