Saturday, May 31, 2014

My Provider

All good things come from God!

I have been planning this trip for weeks in advance to come visit a friend in Orlando. I was looking forward to getting away and spending some time with her, meeting her family and just being able to get away for awhile. Originally the plan was for her to pick me up and we would be spending time in Lake City, which is bout 3 hours north of Orlando.  I bought my ticket with the anticipation of my travels. That day came...

A couple of weeks ago I had mentioned this trip to a friend who offered a timeshare for me to stay at if I needed a place :) I thought that would be such a great alternative and my friend and I could actually spend time in Orlando. Little did I now how much God was setting it up for me because He knew what would happen...He knew what He was doing when He sent me this gift because two days before my trip my friend tells me there is a complication in plans and she does not have transportation to come for me when I arrive...

Today, as I arrived to Orlando airport I had no ride and limited cash, but I was thankful that I had my friend's timeshare already reserved! What a blessing...all I had to do it get to it. So, I was thinking whether to get a cab or rent a car. While attempting to rent a car my card was reclined. The bank tells me my card is locked and I cannot do anything until they open on Monday. Taking a cab would have been plan two except now I needed to watch my cash flow for the week, which was quite limited...

Once again God was in control - he sent me angels in a form of a lady that I happened to know along with her sisters who came for a convention and allowed me to tag along. As long as I did not mind, they would take me to my hotel eventually...I was totally fine with that :)

It was a fun and relaxing field trip, and I was not the one driving!!! Mission accomplished! When we got to the convention, we were all hungry and I got this tabasco turkey with it blew my mind! I guess I was really As we sat down and I was sting this delicious meal I really appreciated the fact that God gave me taste buds to be able to enjoy so many flavours...He did not have to, but He did so that we can ENJOY it :) I was to thankful!

I waited around until they were all done chatting with my lady friend who had no interest in the convention anyway. After that we made another stop - at the Florida mall!!! (I know, boring right? lol - not a chance!). I got to walk around and even was able to get a really good deal on a couple of things that I really needed to get anyway! CHECK! It was solved without my evolvement and because I had to watch my money I did not spend more than I cold afford.

My whole day was planned for me, it was out of my control and in the hands of God. I could have missed the fun and the blessing that God was giving me if I chose to stress about the fact that my friend disappointed me, that I am stuck in the States without sufficient funds trying to take all the matters into my own hands insisting on my own way...but I just said to myself from the beginning that God is in control and that He will provide exactly what I need, that everything happens for a reason. Maybe I was not meant to get into that car for a reason, maybe God knew I needed to save money that I would have spent on a cab or other things if I planned to go to the mall myself...instead, I got an opportunity to exercise patience and trust in Him. I think I passed that test, because at no point did I loose hope and trust that He got this. It feels so good to get out of the way and let God show how much He really is for us!

When I finally arrive to the hotel, it was unbelievable! This was not just a hotel room , it is an amazing apartment overlooking the lake from 19th floor with a kitchen, living room and two bedrooms for me and my friend, who by the way is still able to come! Later I found out that she really had a bad day because even more trouble happen to her and her family glad I did not get mad at her prematurely!

Once again my Daddy totally took care of everything and had me watch His hand at work. I was only able to see it because I was not worried, because I trusted in the fact that He will work everything out for my good even if at the time I did not see how. What an unbelievable day it was today. A true adventure and yet with God there is not need to worry!!!

...and for that I am thankful...

“That is why I tell you not to worry about everyday life—whether you have enough food and drink, or enough clothes to wear. 
Isn’t life more than food, and your body more than clothing? 
Look at the birds. 
They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, 
for your heavenly Father feeds them. 

And aren’t you far more valuable to him than they are?  

Can all your worries add a single moment to your life?

 “And why worry about your clothing? Look at the lilies of the field and how they grow. They don’t work or make their clothing, yet Solomon in all his glory was not dressed as beautifully as they are. 

And if God cares so wonderfully for wildflowers that are here today and thrown into the fire tomorrow, he will certainly care for you. 
Why do you have so little faith?

“So don’t worry about these things, saying, ‘What will we eat? What will we drink? What will we wear?’ These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers, but your heavenly Father already knows all your needs. 

~ Matthew 6:25-32

Friday, May 30, 2014

The Desert


I am in the desert...
Everything is the same...
Wherever you turn all you can see is empty space and nothing else...
All the seasons are mixed up and you don't know whether it's winter or summer...
It would not make any difference anymore, 
'cause you can't feel the pain...
Thoughts can make you drift away for a couple of moments and warm you up at night, 
so you can fall asleep fantasising about that green land 
with exotic birds and trees full of colour...
...where you might have been once before and can't forget...
Suddenly, sandy winds wake you up, 
blowing in your face and you feel the cold running through your body.
Now, the dreamland has evaporated
and you can't think of anything else 
but how to escape from the annoying storm...

~ Iliana G. 
September 28, 2000.

I found this monolog that I wrote in 2000 and it was so fitting!
The moments when we feel like this, the moments when depression creeps in and tries to settle in our hearts and minds. It really does feel like a lifeless desert. No matter where we go or what we do, everywhere we look it all seems to be the same. Depression.

Finding something to be thankful for has been on my mind over the last 30 days, since my last post. Almost every day, even when things were not looking up, I was able to find at least one thing that I was thankful for. Some days that was hard to do, but not because I was not was because it is hard to see colour through the eyes filled with desert vision. Anyone who has been through this kind of desert would understand what it feels one likes being in the desert.

Life gives us deserts, however, and they can be incredible experiences. It has been a fully loaded 30 days in a desert for me. My initial reaction was dread and frustration, wanting to find that escape and go back to that happy and green place I am used to, with all the pretty birds and fruit trees, but every time I would wake up to the reality that I was still in the desert. I reached out to God with questions looking for answers and deliverance, awaiting the day when "this too shall pass"...Those are the moments when even praying is hard. Then, something incredible happened.

It was not obvious at the time, but the Lord responded and led me to fast. That was the same time we were going through Matthew 4 at the bible study, when Jesus was tempted in the desert. It was that day that God spoke to me through Isaiah 61 asking me to release my ashes so He can replace them with His beauty. It meant going to the pain, stop holding on to it and release it to Him. It was only then that He would be able to give me His beauty for my ashes. Three days later, the mooring after my fast, I experienced a visitation from my Daddy. He came not as the Almighty God that He is, not the Heavenly Father I pray to...but as a Daddy. My heart was filled with a love that I have never felt, a love for a father I would have experience but whom I never met. In one instant I felt like everything was going to be OK and peace filled my heart! Psalms 68 became real and alive and in that personal moment He really became the Father to the fatherless. The way that He took care of me from that day up to now was nothing short of miraculous, and that peace never left me.

The deserts in our lives, the unwanted experiences of void are also the place where we get to seek Him the most and find Him. It is the place where everything is stripped away and all we are left with is ourselves in out raw form, in our nakedness before God. It is in the desert that we get thirsty...thirsty for Him. Jesus said "If anyone is thirsty, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in me as the Scriptures said, from his innermost being shall flow rivers of living water" (He was referring to the Holy Spirit)" (John 7:38-39). That was the same Scripture He brought to my mind while I was walking on the beach in Abaco last week.

The key was "Come to Me"...Jesus always calls us to Himself. In the desert that is the only place that we should go if we want to revive our spirit. It was the desert that prepared me for what was to come next. It was the desert that propelled me to go to Him so that He would fill me with the living water, with peace and clarity to see things that I needed to see and to discern situations that He knew were going to come. 

Today I stand in the knowing of the Truth that He is for me. Today I was shown how faithful God is once again and how much He is really for me even when the enemy tries to poison the eyes and perceptions of people I have trusted. Today was a day that the Holy Spirit was so much at work, conquering the battles forged against me. Today I was able to see and discern who is truly walking in the Spirit and who is walking in the flesh. It was like tapping into the spirit world and having the NASCAR VIP pass, constantly being one step ahead. Only the Holy Spirit can grant such revelation, peace and understanding in times like these. The deserts are a cruel place, but being able to see the manifestation of the Holy Spirit at work was priceless!

...and for that...Oh my GOD...I am THANKFUL to YOU!
To all who mourn in Israel,

    he will give a crown of beauty for ashes,

a joyous blessing instead of mourning,

    festive praise instead of despair.
In their righteousness, they will be like great oaks
    that the Lord has planted for his own glory.

~ Isaiah 61:3