Monday, December 29, 2014

Am I starting the New Year Right??

Detroit here we are again. 
Dad's new house has a really nice interior, but is located in the #1 worst zip code in the USA. 

On our way here, our car broke down about an hour away from dad's house. We followed the wrong highway, got off on the next exit to turn around, and were just about to get back on the correct highway, when the serpentine belt under our hood shredded. We backed up (on the on ramp) into a car dealership. The owner happened to be a believer! He had signs that said:
"God Bless You in Jesus' Name"
There also happened to be a coffee and chocolate shop right across the street. Coincidence??!? I think not! We spent a few hours there fixing our car. We got back on the highway and broke down only a few exits further down! We left our car to get fixed overnight. The car happened to break down this time minutes from a Calvary Chapel. 

So Sunday morning we went to the Calvary Chapel in Ann Arbor. It was an awesome time of fellowship, encouragement, and the Holy Spirit even gave me words for the pastor and his wife. They invited us to come to their New Years Afterglow service Wednesday night. I was even invited to assist with worship! We are planning on doing this provided the Lord allows it. 

I won't go into too many specific details on how the rest of the trip is going, but I will say that it's so important to hear from the Lord on things. Even decisions on if to travel and when. Circumstances told us NOT to come to Detroit during this time, but we knew the Lord was in it. He provided all the funding, the time off work, and so much more! And we see Him leading and guiding our every step in this trip. 

I want to tell a story of how ridiculous we look in this city! 
We were at dad's church building/thrift store and we decided to run across Gratiot Street to get some energy drinks from a gas station. We walk in and everyone in the store stops and looks at us. One lady who was with her boyfriend jut points at me and laughs. She's staring at me, looking me up and down saying, 
"What are THEY doing HERE?" 
I just smile. 

So I named this post "Starting a New Year Right??" because I wanted to make a point. 

Do you make decisions based on how circumstances appear, or do you rely on the Lord's voice and His leading you

Do you let "logical thought" be your first or your final marker on the choices you make?

Do you let fear lead you, or God's loving Spirit that casts out all fear?

Do you let your desires lead you, or the fact that God wants to be glorified?

I hear so many times Christians thinking that when things go wrong, or get hard, the Lord must NOT be in it! 

Oh, the contrary!! 
God calls His children to a life of persecution. 
A life of hardship. 

He warns us of it over and over in scriptures:

John 15:20 Remember the word that I said unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord. If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you; if they have kept my saying, they will keep yours also. 

1 Corinthians 4:12-14And labour, working with our own hands: being reviled, we bless; being persecuted, we suffer it: Being defamed, we intreat: we are made as the filth of the world, and are the offscouring of all things unto this day. I write not these things to shame you, but as my beloved sons I warn you.

We see all throughout scriptures God calling His people into situations that were not comfortable, nor did they make any sense to the "logical instinct" of man (Abraham, Daniel, Jonah...).

It makes no sense to choose a life that denies the flesh, that denies the "luxuries" that our flesh craves. I am learning this lesson more and more. I SO desire to be set free from the bondage of fear, and to be set free from the pull of this flesh! I long to desire all God has for me and my family. I crave to be the bold, fearless child of God who goes forward without counting anything dear to myself except the cross of Jesus Christ. 

And we are applying that right now, at the beginning of this year. 
In the most dangerous zip code in the USA. 
Drug deals, shootings, hookers, fear, and darkness. 
Oh, Jesus, how much this world needs You! 
How much I need You!

So, in light of the New Year, I want to grow so much more in love with Jesus this year, that all else fades into the background. 

I want to throw off this cloak of fear once and for all of where our country is headed, and the fear of the enemy becoming too strong. 

I want to be an example to my children how to stand up for righteousness in a world that LOVES sin. 

Will you join me???
Christmas Eve at my mom's house.

Christmas Morning at our house. 

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