Learning to love.

Bob and I sat around a table with other couples the other night, making small talk. One person asked the couple sitting to her left how they met. Everyone enjoyed the shared memory, and the smiles on the couple’s faces moved my heart. When it came to “our” story, people at the table looked surprised when they learned that Bob had asked me to marry him shortly after we met and looked even more surprised when I shared my response and thought process about making a lifelong decision. I, of course, said yes, but in my head, I thought, What the hell, let us see how long this will last.

I admit that is an outrageous thought, especially when people do not understand my life’s “back story,” this is not the time or place for it. But I will say that I was taught that being female meant not having value other than to be at the beck and call of the men in her life, to serve them(.)

The only understanding of “love” that I had was performance earned. I felt my life was disposable and allowed people to treat me that way. Once the person who received my love was tired of me, I was tossed aside without remorse.

The word “love” was used too often when I was growing up without experiencing the love described in the Bible.

With that said, one could understand my thought process when giving Bob my answer. However, to my surprise, Bob showed me the love described in 1 Corinthians 13.

Verse 1-8: Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.

I am not saying that I experienced these attributes every day of the thirty-six-plus years we have been married. Because Bob didn’t experience this love growing up either, it wasn’t modeled to him.  

So, how can I explain our being together this long?

Mentors.

People placed in our lives who taught and showed us what love looks like and prayed for us. And most of all, the Word of God (Bible).

There are a lot of people in the world today who think that God is in Heaven, ready to harm, hit, and curse anyone who does not follow the “rules” or toss them out when they quit performing. This does not describe who God is. As I have explained before, GOD is LOVE.

Bob desired that our marriage would look different than the ones he watched his parents have. But it wasn’t until we both learned that God loves us (first) that our relationship started to grow.

A mentor once described it this way: Look at a triangle. Bob, imagine yourself on the bottom left corner, Georgia on the right, and love (God) on the top. By keeping your eye on love moving toward Him, what happens to the lines on the left and right? They come together.

If you can relate to my ‘back story’ and want to learn about love (God) as described in the Bible, pray for a mentor who knows GOD and is willing to invest in your life. Bob and I were (still are) blessed with such wonderful mentors.

With that said, Happy Valentine’s Day everyone.

My journey this morning.

The first thing I did upon getting up was declare that I could see and am 100% healed in my body. After saying this, I realized that I allow some ailments to continue to harass my quality of life. Then a question was dropped in my heart: Can salt water and fresh water be together yet separate?

This led me to the passage found in James chapter three. Most of us have quoted verse eleven: Can fresh and salt water flow from the same spring? The first few lines of this chapter show us that this analogy refers to our tongues or words.

Wanting more understanding, I decided to read at the beginning of chapter three, and verse two caught my attention.

Anyone who is never at fault in what they say(a) is perfect (mature), able to keep their whole body in check (b).

(a) 1 Peter 3:10 For whoever would love life and see good days must keep their tongue from evil and their lips from deceitful speech.

(b) James 1:26 Those who consider themselves religious and yet do not keep a tight rein on their tongues deceive themselves, and their religion is worthless.

Of course, I want to see good days, and my whole body healed and functioning as original design. However, I know that my words do not always agree with God’s words, especially if I am saying I can’t see, but on the other hand, I am saying that I am 100% completely healed; I am just waiting for it to manifest in my body.

I am waiting for God to do something, but HE has already done it. He is waiting for me to “partner” with Him.

I had a stirring in my spirit about who I have been partnering with; asking Holy Spirit for wisdom, I realized there was something that I had to repent for and break a partnership off with my blood-bought sword. 

I won’t go into the details of the moment highlighted to me, but it was when I snickered about a comment about another person. Though I didn’t say the words that poked fun at this individual, nor was he even around to hear the sarcastic remarks. It is what I empowered with my agreement.

Poking fun – to mildly taunt or mock someone or something. Bully. Torment. Ridicule. To be Contemptuous, scornful, sneering, sardonic.

Some might think I am splitting hairs here and shouldn’t be so serious. But God’s word is HIS word, scripture, and I need to apply it to all areas of my life.

Simply put, we are to follow the example that Jesus showed us. Do we read about how a crowd was ‘poking fun’ at another person, and Jesus joined in on the mocking? No.

My knowledge of the scripture (not that I am a scholar), Jesus was more and likely the center of the mocking and ridicule. Wasn’t the crowd sneering when Jesus was being scourged?

I end this by saying if I expect the word of God to work for me, I need to thoroughly look at his word to understand how to apply it and align with it.

Today, I see more clearly that another veil (layer) of deception has been removed.    

Teaching me a lesson.

This morning, during my quiet time, I was thinking of this new journey (tuning my hearing) I am on, I asked the Lord. Are you teaching me a lesson, not in a ‘bad’ way but in a good sense?

Me just making that sort of comment. I thought, what does “teach you a lesson” mean? I looked things up on Urban Dic. It is awful; the stuff I read is very brash. I looked at other websites, too, but my eyes began to strain, so I stopped.

I then heard in my heart: There isn’t one thing you will miss; you will learn all you need. It isn’t about learning a lesson, but it is an equipping. I am equipping you.

For me, to write something without researching is intimidating. My writing will be rawer than before because it is the true stirrings of my heart; thus, I am more exposed.

Maybe my “researching” hindered my ability to listen to what God was saying in my heart. Perhaps reading what others had to say has hampered my ‘hearing ‘in those conversations initiated by Holy Spirit.

But maybe this is what is needed; perhaps this is what the Lord wants. In the past, my “researching” would take up much of my time, confusing my original revelation.

Please understand me; research is good, especially when searching in scripture, but without Wisdom from Holy Spirit, it is still just human interpretation.

My personality, I want to get things right and get an A on my test. But with that mindset, I think I am wrong about many things. I may not seem that way, but this is how I feel. This process has kept me from writing things that Trinty and I have discussed over the years.

Researching takes time, and with the busy calendar I tend to keep, I must ask: how many conversations have I left the room before true revelation was given to me? And walking out of the room (per se) only confuses my mind even more.

Because I have the world’s view on a matter and Wisdom is trying to show me another perspective, I become intimidated to speak and put the conversation on the shelf. Afraid to voice these perspectives without ‘backing it up’ with research has kept me quiet on many things. 

Today, the way our culture sees things or even defines words has, in my belief, affected the way we communicate with each other and understand scripture.

Unfortunately, when we try to come together as a society to communicate about issues in our communities, we each use a different dictionary, so to speak, because we do our research. And as many different answers we can get for the same question, we approach things in this matter.

Chaos begins to stir, pride gets in the way, and the next thing we know, there is a room full of puppets, and the puppeteer (Satan) is pulling all the strings. Nothing gets accomplished, and the wall offense becomes reinforced, making it harder to get a breakthrough.

So, as I am in this equipping journey, I have to stop straining my eyes, harken in with my ears to what Holy Spirit is saying, and step out. I pray that we can learn to do this; I believe it will be vital in the days ahead. 

Are you experiencing the fullness of the season?

We have had unseasonably warm temperatures, making it not ‘feel’ like Christmas. But with the snow falling outside and the living room lit with LED candles, I turned the fireplace on and sat cozy with a cup of tea and a warm blanket on the couch.

The atmosphere was set to experience the evening. I searched for The Nativity Story to stream through our television.

Then a question dropped in my heart: Are you experiencing the fullness of this season? Is it about the falling snow outside? LED tea lights? The fireplace glowing?  

As I thought about these questions and looked around at my surroundings, it may seem that the atmosphere was set, but not “really.”

I mean, the candles weren’t really glowing with a small flame dancing with the movement in the room. The fireplace “looked” as if it was burning but not three-dimensional, with the colors of heat dancing within the wood pieces in the dog grate (freestanding metal holder inside the fireplace opening). 

Pondering the question, I realized I hadn’t ever experienced this type of setting. I mean, with real candles burning and a real fireplace glow as it heats the room. 

Then I heard these words within my being: Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Prince of Peace.

Then another question was dropped: Are you experiencing the fullness of The Messiah?

Wow, that’s a good question. Am I?

This past year, we (Bob and I) have journeyed down paths we have never walked before. We experienced The Wonderful Counselor when my mother passed away. The Prince of Peace when I got diagnosed with stage IV cancer. Immanuel (God with us) as I started chemo treatments. Jehovah Rapha (the Lord who heals) when my scans came back “Cancer Free.”

In these situations, we experienced one aspect of the Messiah but did not always recognize His fullness.

He is the Prince of Peace. But also, HE is the Mighty God, King of kings, and Lord of all.

So, as we come upon the day we celebrate the birth of Our Messiah, let us not think only of Jesus as a babe lying in the manger. But let us celebrate the FULLNESS of our Savior. And not just on December 25th but every day.  

From the sincerity of our hearts, we are very grateful for all the faith-filled prayers prayed on our behalf this year. James 5:15

May each of us experience the fullness of The Messiah this season and always.

Merry Christmas.

Make your request known.

I recently was asked if I could do something for a person I hold dear to my heart. I don’t recall her ever asking me to do anything for her the 12 years that we have known each other. My heart leaped when she reached out to me. I was determined; “even if I don’t know how to do this task, I will get it done for her,” I thought to myself.

Once I started in on the ‘project,’ I couldn’t help but smile.  I was the only one in the room as I worked on the task; no one could see the joy it brought me to do as she requested. Truthfully from start to finish didn’t take me long at all.

I can’t being to explain the joy it brought me; it was an easy task; you would have thought I just gave her a million dollars the way I felt inside. My thought to myself: “I hope that she would ask me to do more for her.”

Driving home, I contemplated how much joy it brought me to do a simple task and connect with each family member. We didn’t go anywhere; it wasn’t long conversations. What brought me so much joy was being in their presence.

Holy Spirit dropped in my heart: How you feel right now is how Father God feels when you ask Him to do even the smallest of things and/or spend time with Him.  At that moment, I felt His love more deeply toward me.

How often do we think we “need” to read chapters in our Bibles or be in prayer for long hours to bring or Father in Heaven joy? How often do we avoid “asking” for the smallest of requests thinking we are ‘bothering’ Him? But Papa God wants to spend time with us.

It makes me think of the time that I set aside to “soak.”  Now you are probably asking, “what is that?”

Soaking is when a person purposely sets aside everything to gaze on the beauty of the Lord (Psalm 27:4). No one is teaching, and no questions are being asked. You soak in worship music that is being played. The atmosphere is relaxing, and at times I have dozed off.

The first time I was invited to soak, I asked Papa God what this would be like? I had heard of people getting tangible things when they were in the presence of God. Seriously I have a friend that can testify to this phenomenon.

I chuckled to myself and thought this question; Papa, will you give me a diamond?

There is a story behind that question, I will not go into the details, but years ago, God told me to look for diamonds throughout my day. That most people will only hear or see the negative in our world. But it takes purpose to look for the positive. He said to me, “Georgia, I am handing you diamonds all day long, every day. Look for them, and pick them up. Put them in your pocket; before long, you will have a wheel barrel full of them.

So, I only expected a positive experience when asking Papa about ‘diamonds.’ Though I must admit, there was a small part of me that hoped for an actual diamond (big or small). Either way, I was “looking” for something extraordinary. 

I instantly felt comfortable even though I had never been at this church or knew the people in the room; even the person who invited me was not there. But I felt I was around family. I got comfortable and just let my mind think of all the things God has done on my behalf. My heart was overjoyed as I ‘soaked’ in his presence. Some people were writing things down in a notebook, and some were resting. After about 45 minutes, someone turned the music down, and people began to sit up. Everyone looked relaxed with a sincere smile. One by one, the group shared the things that they had felt, seen, or heard while they were soaking. It was very encouraging. The couple next to me said; well, I got something for you, they pointed to me. To my surprise, I waited to hear what they had to say. “I am not sure if this makes sense to you, but I heard the Lord say; Diamonds, tell her I have got lots of diamonds for her.”

Oh my goodness, I was thrilled! No one knew the question I asked in my heart to Papa God. And I can only imagine that this couple felt odd saying something that made no sense to them to a person they have never met before. But! It spoke so much to me!

God hears us! He knows us and wants to bless us. Papa God loves to spend time with us, and when we ask Him for something, He is overjoyed to give it to us. 

                Psalm 37:4 NLT Take delight in the Lord,  and he will give you your heart’s desires.

The request that my loved one asked of me, which I had written about initially, was a task that ultimately helped her save a little money. It wasn’t some outlandish assignment; it was simple.  What blessed my heart was the fact that I was asked. 

When we ask Papa God for something, we can confidently go before Him, knowing that HE loves us and no request is too small. And whenever I remember how my heartfelt doing the simple task for my loved one, I  will connect this feeling of deep love to the way God feels towards me.

Be Blessed, everyone; look for the diamond in your day.