Sojourners.. The Journey Begins… again

This morning, December 3, 2018,  I embark on a journey.  It’s a journey that many of us have made, some multiple times, like me.  My trip is a journey toward heath and fitness, I’m making this trip alongside my dear friend, who was encouraged by her doctor to lose X lbs.   I pledge to lose X right along with her, not only as a show of support to her, but as a friend, an encourager, and advocate, and fellow sojourner.

We were supposed to start this journey a few months ago, and she may have, but I was literally lazy and failed…   ah, the failures..   The good thing about failing is that it gives you opportunity to reflect, make changes as appropriate, dust yourself off, and begin again.

I’m confident in my goals… as I’ve achieved them before  😉    In all honesty, needing to work really hard to achieve a lofty goal is a thrill for me.   When I want to be, I can be very dogged, with a “stick-to-it-ive-ness” that would make even the toughest of coaches proud.

The journey of 1000 miles…   (or the second 1000) begins with the first step.

Here’s to the next 1,000.   I’ll keep you all posted!

Much love and blessings to you all!

SB

Copyright 2018 – Journey-For-Life.  All Rights Reserved.

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Broken Tears

For weeks, maybe months, or perhaps since forever, I don’t really know, nary a tear has fallen from my eye.  The steel part of my heart would tell you it’s because my tears are broken – or that they’ve become so hardened that they forgot how to feel – or that I probably come by that trait naturally.  My mother is one of the toughest people I’ve ever met.  I can only recall seeing a tear on her face one time – the morning that my father died.   It’s probably not that surprising that I don’t often cry.

All of that came to an unexpected and abrupt end this afternoon during lunch with a new-found friend who wanted to know more about the book, Masquerade.  His own story was one of redemption and grace, from our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, and he was looking for guidance on how to publish his story.   Humbly, he sat across the table from me at the local Panera bread, describing how he had been delivered from alcoholism by a loving Savior.

As we talked about the moment in time when he heard the inaudible yet unmistakable voice of God say to him, “you’re going to die and I’m going to let you if you don’t get yourself straightened around”,  I could feel my eyes well up with tears.  He recounted wondering why God had chosen Him and not others whom he had known who had died of their addictions; whatever the reason, there he was, naked in humility, exposing his weakness, reaffirming the notion that when we are weakest, God is strongest.  He enumerated how many times along his journey he faltered and failed, and how every single time, God was there to pick him up and make him new again…. and how sometimes, despite the fact that he’s walked with Jesus for a long time, he still makes mistakes and needs to seek forgiveness regularly.

Because of my own sin and weakness, my heart was grieved, and tears flowed from the tear ducts that I had long thought a desert.  He actually asked me if I was OK.

I think there are two dangerous thoughts when it comes to redemption.  One tells us that since we now walk with Jesus, we should be perfect.  After all, He makes all things new, and He does ask us to put away our sinful ways now that we are new creatures in Him.  Perhaps there are others along this life journey with me, however, who might agree with me that there will be times when we fail, even when we’ve walked with Jesus for a long time.  Somehow, we expect that when we’ve walked with Jesus for a long time and have grown in our faith, that we won’t fall back into our sin habits.

I wholeheartedly believe that, just as God knows us and knows our strengths and weaknesses, so does the Devil.  He knows that my new friend is predisposed to struggle with alcohol, while I may be predisposed to struggle in other ways.   He will look for opportunities to cause us to fail, or to question our faith.  My friends, there is a fierce battle going on for your soul – no matter how long or short a time you’ve been a Christian, no matter how strong you believe your faith is.  There will be times when you will fail.  It is important to remember that when this happens, God still loves you.

The other dangerous thought we have when it comes to redemption is to think that, because we may have failed, even after we know Jesus, that we cannot correct our path.  The truth is that God loves us, and will continue to give us opportunities to come back to Him.  We have to be the ones to make the decision, and we have to be the ones to call in God for help in time of trouble.

Our conversation turned to hearing God’s voice.  My new friend talked about the moment in time when he heard the inaudible yet unmistakable voice of God.  I, too, have heard that voice, and I’ve known others who have as well.   Inexplicably, not everyone hears this voice, perhaps because the other voices in their lives are too loud, or perhaps their hearts have been hardened too much.  Unquestionably, however, there are people whose ears are tuned to hear the voice of God.

Meeting a new friend who is along this journey-for-life was good for me. It gave me renewed perspective that God makes all things new; and he specializes in taking our completely wrecked lives and making them beautiful again – and that process can  take a long time, and follow a sometimes crooked path.

Keep seeking, my friends.  Keep trekking the journey.

Blessings to you,

SB

Copyright 2018. Journey-For-Life – All rights reserved.

Angel Dove

Sweet dreams, my beloved

angel dove 2

In the twilight hours of life’s long Day,

as you prepare for Sleep,

pondering the days’ regrets

the thoughts you’d like to keep

The hours, they pass so quickly

And the mind, it soon forgets

Decisions past and present

Sing a haunting, sweet duet

Sweet dreams, my beloved,

From the Angel Dove

As you pass from this world to the next

Into His arms of Love

The sunrise, so beautiful,

gives way to one more day

On borrowed time the clouds give rise

To storms that come our way

The melancholy descant

Serenades a weeping soul

A philharmonic tribute

like classic rock and roll

Sweet dreams, my beloved,

From the Angel Dove

As you pass from this world to the next

Into His arms of Love

And aft the storm subsides

a breath sent down from Heaven

the rainbow to remind us

His love, forgiveness given

a love yet unrequited

Birthed in innocence above

Leaves its farewell cloaked in insolence

Brought by the Angel Dove

Sweet dreams, my beloved,

From the Angel Dove

As you pass from this world to the next

Into His arms of Love

The evening shows no mercy

As we bid our last adieu

The music starts the coda

As you listen for your cue

You wonder what could have been

In fate mates deepest soul

Sweet dreams, my beloved,

From the Angel Dove

Sweet dreams, my beloved,

From your Angel Dove

As you pass from this world to the next

Into His arms of Love

Blessings,

SB

Copyright 2018. All right reserved Journey For Life

How do you know God is real?

As I’ve mentioned in previous posts, I have the awesome privilege of being a youth leader at my church – and as such, I have an awesome opportunity to “stay relevant” and connect with junior high and high school kids. For the past few weeks, we’ve been doing a study on how to KNOW GOD. Last week, we found that some of them struggled to put into words how they knew God was real in their lives. As a leader, I believe it is always important to be willing to do what you ask those you lead to do  (incidentally, this is true in ANY leadership position), so I challenged myself along with challenging them to think about how they would answer someone if asked how they knew God was real in their lives.

In my own life, I KNOW God is real because I have seen Him answer prayers – time and time again, over a life time of requests, He has been faithful.  I’ve shared some of those answered prayers and plan to share more over time, however, I’d really like to hear from my readers – How do YOU know God is real?   or..  how do you not know God is real?

Be straight up – I encourage you to think about this on your journey…

When you’re account is overdrawn by $10,000.00

Have you ever had that “What the ? “ moment like you’ve been kicked in the stomach… like when you realize you missed an appointment that you waited 3 months to get, or when you receive  bill for something you didn’t know was coming… or when your bank account is suddenly overdrawn by $10,000.00.

Yes, you read I right…   $10,000.00

How many of us actually make $10,000.00 transactions?

When my mom told me her account was overdrawn by over $10,000.00, I had to read her message a second time to make sure I read it right.   Surely there was some mistake.  Ha.  NOPE.  overdrawn by $10,000.00

We were away for the weekend, and the last thing I said to her (literally) was, “Do not throw any wild parties, Nana!”

What the heck kind of wild party did she throw for $10,000 while we were gone for the weekend?? Goodness!

Luckily, it was simply a bank error (really) so she’s back in black. (:-))

Be a blessing to someone today!

SB

Copyright 2018 Journey For Life. All rights reserved.