Monday, December 26, 2011

Money & Time

Money and Time, there never seems to be enough of both of them. Which one would you say is more important? Which one is more valuable? Which one is irreplaceable? Which one is easier to replace? Which one can we not live without? 

By the worlds perspective and standards it is Money that is most valuable, because after all there is always tomorrow. This world focuses on how we spend our Money, the importance of wise investments, but I would dare to say that how we spend our time makes the greatest impact on our lives. Which was most memorable, influential, and had the greatest effect on your life, and the lives of the ones you love? The way you spent the last $500,000 or the way you spent the last 5 years, the way you spent the last $50,000 or the way you spent the last 5 months, the way you spent the last $5,000 or the way you spent the last 5 weeks, the way you spent the last $500, or the way you spent the last 5 days? 

How we spend our time in the upcoming year will have the greatest influence on our own life as well as the ones we love. We can always get back money, we can never get back the time we have lost.

Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be. Matthew 6:21

And what do you benefit if you gain the whole world, but lose your own soul? Is anything worth more than your soul? (NLT) Matthew 16:26

For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what shall a man give in return for his soul? (ESV) Matthew 16:26

Friday, December 16, 2011

Little Lamb

Do you remember the first time you watched The Little Drummer Boy?

As a little child I wondered; Can GOD really bring back to life a little lamb that is dead? Over the years I often wondered would I ever see such a Magnificent Miracle like this, someone actually brought back to life? 

I have been a Christian for the past 15 years. During these past 15 years as I grew in my walk with Christ, I knew that GOD could do Great Miracles, but I wondered would He ever do such a Great Miracle that I may witness for myself with my very own eyes?

I use to think that only the Greatest of Christians, those born into loving Christian Homes were worthy of such an honor to witness a Miracle take place. Not coming from a loving Christian Family (quite the opposite in fact), I saw myself more like the unwanted & unloved dolly on the island of misfit toys.

Through the years I always felt broken to one degree or another. You would never be able to tell, because as a child I learned to suppress, and cover up my pain so well that on the outside I looked perfectly fine. Truth is, I never felt like I could quite measure up to others in the Christian World. Although the child abuse I suffered and endured was no fault of my own, I still felt shame, that if people knew about my horrific childhood that they would see me as "damaged goods."

I was fortunate to have great counselors & therapists who helped me process the pain of the past, but there still was a piece deep inside of me that was broken. This piece I discovered that was so broken & shattered comes from pain that your own parents don't love you. Even when you have the love of others you never out grow the need of a parent's love.

As good as counselors and therapists are there is a ceiling effect to how much they can help, and mend what is broken. What my relationship with Christ has taught me is that He was greatly wounded, so that the greatest of wounds could heal. Wounds, so deep that they tear at the very soul of a person.

The early part of my Christian Life was spent learning & knowing about Christ. The Bible is referred to as "The Holy Handbook" or "The Creator's Manual". If something is broken, or is not functioning at optimal level we need to look to the Creator's Manual to see how it can be mended, repaired, and restored.

For such a long time I believed the enemy's lies that GOD must not love me to give me not only one, but two very abusive parents, as well as an abusive uncle that viciously attacked me, and a once trusted teacher that abused me.

 By reading GOD's Word I discovered in Jeremiah 29:11 that abuse was NEVER apart of GOD's Perfect Plan for me, or any of us. Those who hurt me chose to do so against GOD's will, and GOD is clear about what will happen to them, especially since they have unrepentant hearts. 

To those of us who have been abused, and left to feel unwanted & unloved by their parents, "Though my father and mother forsake me, the Lord will receive me. Teach me your way, Lord; lead me in a straight path because of my oppressors." 
Psalm 27:10-11

GOD promises never to forsake us and to be parent to the parentless. What the enemy meant to destroy me, has in fact blessed me in ways others will may never know in this life time, because they do not have the same need or void to fill. To actually know GOD as Healer we have to personally experience His Healing Touch & Love by being healed ourselves . I haven't just heard of His Healing, I have experienced first-hand His Healing, so I can say I know Him as Healer.  

GOD's Amazing Word & Love has healed me from a painful past, and has transformed my pain into Divine Purpose far beyond what I could ever imagine. I am so excited to see what GOD is going to do with this former unwanted and unloved Misfit. What I am currently experiencing is that everything is coming together to fit into GOD's Perfect Plan. Where we don't fit in the world, GOD has a perfect place in His Kingdom.

Jesus Christ is the Holy Shepard who lovingly picks up the little lost lambs of the world. His Sacred Love paid the price for not only our Salvation & Restoration, but also our Reconciliation with the Most High GOD.

This past Tuesday my precious Daughter Carissa was a little lamb in her Kindergarten Christmas Play. It reminded me of how Jesus Christ was born to be the Lamb of GOD to be sacrificed for the sins of the world, and to not only bring Salvation, but most importantly Reunification not just in our next life, but in this life. We are united with Christ in GOD's Kingdom to be Sons & Daughters of the King of Kings. And by GOD's Authority we can have & shall have victory over death in this life.

 Just over 5 years ago, when I was still in my first trimester I woke up having a horrible miscarriage, a huge puddle of blood and tissue surrounded me. The shock & emotional pain literally took my breath away. I was frozen in fear. My husband and I have tried to become parents for 12 years, and we suffered 144 painful months, some much more painful than others. Each month felt like the loss of a dream to have a family of our own. That morning our worst nightmare was coming true right before our eyes, and our hearts were being shattered into a million pieces. I witnessed my husband's heart shatter in the greatest agony he had ever experienced. It was the worst day of our lives. 

Then I felt the presence of the Lord, that "Peace that surpasses all understanding". Later when I was at the doctor's office, I witnessed the doctor's complete shocked face, as he said, "I am very concerned for all the blood loss & the tissue separation, but you still have a strong healthy heartbeat, as in your baby has a strong healthy heartbeat. This was a man who did not share our faith, but said, "there is nothing medically I can do for you to make sure you hold on and don't lose your baby, just keep praying." 

Months later when I was near the end of my pregnancy the doctor was examining my progress, and the same complete shocked look appeared upon his face as he said, "there is complete healing, no scare tissue, nothing to signify the previous tear & separation, as if it never happened." With the amount of tissue damage caused by the separation of my child being pulled away from my body I should have had some scar tissue from the natural physical healing. In other words, the doc was proclaiming the Supernatural Healing of Jesus Christ! 

The Lamb of GOD was slain and shed His Holy Blood over 2000 years ago, and 5 years ago He saved Carissa's Life before she was born, and in doing so I know He saved my Life and my husband's life too. This past Tuesday Carissa was honored to be selected to portray a little lamb in the stable of Bethlehem that first Christmas Day when Christ Jesus was born in a manger. 
Oh precious Lamb of GOD I Praise You for saving my little lamb, 
and being her Great Shepard.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Oh Christmas Tree

Decorating the Christmas Tree
How do you decorate your Christmas Tree? Maybe the question should be, What items do you hang upon your Christmas Tree? What are your favorite things to place upon your Christmas Tree?

Christopher & I share a Christmas Tradition that many of you may also have in your home. Every year we select a Christmas Ornament that represents a special Moment we shared that year. We had this tradition from the time we first started dating and selected our "First Christmas Together' Ornament from the Hallmark store. The year we got married we purchased a Christmas Ornament of a Hawaiian Couple to represent our wedding in Hawaii. In 2003 we purchased our first home together and bought a set of keys to represent the day before Thanksgiving when we got our house keys, and spent all of Thanksgiving Eve Night preparing a surprise Thanksgiving Dinner at our new home -- family thought they were just stopping by a friend's house to pick up extra chairs when they discovered the new house was our house! There are a couple of handmade Christmas Ornaments that I made as a child hanging up next to my child's hand-made Christmas Ornaments. There is a school picture of Christopher as a young boy, a Kindergartener, the same age Carissa is now, that is glued to a paper Christmas Ornament. There is a Military Ornament Representing all of our service men and women in the armed forces. There is this adorable Hallmark Christmas Ornament with a rooster w/classes reading a green book titled Parent's to Be with a Momma hen sitting on top of one egg, knitting waiting for her egg to hatch (we waited 12 years, 144 months for our egg to hatch! -- which was well worth the wait. Then during my pregnancy I had a miscarriage that GOD transformed into a Miracle when He saved Carissa and knit her so safely & perfectly that the doc. was completely shocked that "there was no sign of the separation, no scar tissue, nothing as if it never happened"), then last, but certainly not least two very special Christmas Ornaments, a white baby bootie with a pink flower & ribbon, and a white little bear with a pink blanket both ornaments read, Baby's First Christmas.

Those are some of my most favorite Christmas Ornaments because they represent the fond memories & blessings that each unique experience brought me. I also have Christmas Ornaments from Friends & Family. Grandma & Grandpa started purchasing a special Christmas Ornament for Carissa ever since she was born. Her second year she started ballet, so they got her a ballerina ornament. The third year they got her a Tinkerbell ornament, because she not only likes Tinkerbell, she is a tinker putting together all sort of cleaver projects, and finding new ways to utilize her toys & objects in ways no one else imagined. Last year she received a Cinderella ornament to to represent the beautiful blue Cinderella dress Grandma hand-made for her. I don't know what she will get this year? Maybe something representing Kindergarden? 

I am looking forward to what Carissa is going to make in her Kindergarden Class to hang on the tree this year. 

For Christopher and I we have been thinking what can represent this year for us? What we came up with was a book with the WOW logo on it. To see the new WOW logo, Click Here.

WOW represents many things for us. It started off being the acronym for Women of Worth the name of a Christian BookClub that I thought would be a great idea, but it appears that the Lord has even Greater Plans which He continues to reveal to us. I am excited to see what the Lord is going to do next!

While putting together the WOW BookClub the Lord placed in my heart the desire to start an 
Outreach Program to help children whose childhood, like my own, has been a living nightmare. GOD has taught me through His Amazing, Healing, Transforming Love that out of our darkest pain His Divine Purpose arises. Our Backstory is not a place of shame or inferiority, but a place that is transformed & testifies through Victory to His Glory. In other words, our Backstory is for His Glory!

What GOD teaches me I am compeled to share with others. My personal motto & life devotion is to Share It Forward!

If GOD has brought you through it, then there is no one better equipped than you to do something about it. 

GOD brought me the healing, He brought me the Purpose, He even gave me the name, Giving Dreams Wings, for our Outreach Ministry, yet I did not know exactly where to start, or in what direction to go. Some many needs & so many choices to make. Where do I begin?

Then one wonderful October Morning GOD placed the plans in Carissa's heart, and out of a Daughter's Dream to help others our first Giving Dreams Wings Outreach Program was created. As the saying goes, "And a child shall lead them."

Most certainly in one word to sum up this year would be WOW!