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Multiplying Texts

And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according tohis purpose. ~ Romans 8:28

Recently, one of my friends has been going through a rough time.  She is called. She has a purpose. Jesus has a destiny for her.  Sometimes though, on our way to fulfilling our destiny, God allows things to happen in our lives so that our chains can be burned away so that we are ready for His tasks. phone

I truly believe in Romans 8:28.  I believe that ALL things come together.  In her struggles yesterday, she was texting me and God latched on to something He said through me and used technology to multiple the text.  I told her:

[Friend]-  be strong. The Lord is your strength. He is your shield. He will uphold you in His arms of love.

I found out today that God had that same text sent to her almost hourly yesterday from the moment I sent it until 11PM last night.  All day she was fighting a tough battle. Things flying in from all directions.  What I said did not feel incredibly profound to me at the moment. I felt like I was speaking truth but clearly, God knew it was a truth that she had to hear all day.  She sees it (as I do) as a miracle.

This is the God we serve. This is my Jesus.  That something that I felt was meaningful but definitely not profound enough to send the same text 15 times in the same day, He multiplied and resent to her all day long- to remind her He loves her. That He will uphold her. That He will be her shield.  That He is her strength.

Dear readers- know that God loves you just as much! Know that He will also uphold You in His arms of love. Know that He will be your shield as well! Know that He is your strength as much as He is mine, as much as He is my friend’s!

Jesus, 

Thank You that You’ll even take a seemingly simple text and multiply it for the needs of the recipient. Thank You that even technology is in Your hands. Thank You that ALL things work together when put in Your hands!!! Praise You Jesus! Thank You Jesus!!! 

Rebekah M. 

Rough Day

An upright man gives thought to his ways (Proverbs 21:29)

So today was rough. I started the day with finding out I missed something on a patient that, although not fatal, was a BIG thing to miss. Nothing bad happened, but I shouldn’t have missed it. Later on, I had a huge blow when a test showed another one of my patients had a silent but potentially deadly condition. One where a person can go from looking fine to dead in just a few minutes.

It really got to me. I had instantly bonded with this patient and his wife and, although he was fine at the moment, knowing that he was so seriously ill (although it was not evident looking at him) got me to the core. Being emotionally invested in my people means that when they are hurting, I hurt. When they aren’t doing well, it makes me feel a bit like I’m not doing well. It makes me a good doctor, but it also makes me vulnerable to burnout.

Recently, another student joined my team. We start the day at the same time, work in the same office space, and typically have most of our meals together.  He’s even made it his mission to have me watch the entire series of Scrubs (all 8, not counting the fake 9th season). We essentially spend most of our day together until I pray with my family at night or go to church.

Knowing that I was so emotionally compromised today, I had a moment where I thought, “I must be careful. I am missing [the guy I just let go], I am spending LOTS of time with this guy every day, my heart is hurting for my patient, and my pride is hurt from my missing that thing yesterday. I need to be careful.”

So what did I do? I talked to a friend that I knew would lay it to me straight. Luckily, since I was preemptively seeking help, she mainly confirmed that yes, I was right to be concerned and it was good I was being mindful and careful.  Are there times where he’s flirty with me? She confirmed that yes, when he does things like taking my stethoscope from around my neck even though he had his in his pocket and taunted me about it in front of the nurses, that was flirting. But she also confirmed that that’s why it was good I was reaching out NOW, BEFORE anything was happening. The best part was that she even prayed with me and prayed over me about this.

I think I’m growing. This time with a guy who seems attracted to me but not someone I can date (since he does not believe like I do), I am seeking God in prayer. This time I am saying “Lord, I’m weak, I know that I’m vulnerable to being attracted to this guy. Help me God, help me be good. Help me not do anything wrong. Help me Jesus.”  Like the above verse in Proverbs, I feel like I am reflecting on my past and knowing that just because he’s not in church, it doesn’t mean I’m immune to his charms.  It just means that Jesus is my strength. That even on rough days, I can find comfort in Him, not in a guy’s hug (mental or physical). That even on days when I’m worried for my patients and was just reprimanded, God is good and holds me through it.  I don’t need a guy to cheer me up, just Jesus.

Thank You Lord for helping me through this rough day.  Thank You God that I didn’t turn to man (or a man in this case) but I turned to You. Thank You God that I am safe in Your arms.  Thank You Jesus for giving me strength to be good and not offer anything more than just friendship.  I praise You. I worship You. I love and adore You Jesus more than anything else and I love that I can say it and mean it!!! 

Rebekah M. 

Identity in Christ

Definition of Identity:

1) The fact of being who or what a person or thing is.Fingerprint

2) A close similarity or affinity.

I have spent the last few years on a journey of discovering who I am. It started with uncovering a family secret in 2009 that the man who raised me may not actually be my biological father. Worse than this discovery was finding out that the man suspected of being my father was the person in my life who had wounded me more deeply than any other human being on this earth. Emotionally this put me in a tailspin. As a result I started down a path to try to gain a sense of identity. In the last few months I have done extensive research on my family tree and a few days ago received the results of a DNA test to help answer some of these questions. The outcome of this test gave me more questions than answers.

The results of this test were not exactly what I wanted. In talking about it with my godfather he said that sometimes it’s better not to know. He is right, but it’s in our human nature to want to understand where we come from and why things happened the way they did. But I thank God that He has given me peace in this situation. The Lord has held me through every fear and comforted me through my tears. He is my true Father!

I Praise the Lord for His revelation to me that my identity does not lie in bloodlines and broken promises, my identity rests in Jesus Christ! 2 Corinthians 5:17 says, “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.” Where I come from is not important, it’s where I am going!

“But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name: Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God” (John 1:12-13).

When we are baptized in Jesus Name, we take on His name! We enter into a relationship with Him and from then on we get to use the family name. What a privilege it is to be able to call ourselves Christians! He is our perfect father. He takes care of us, provides our needs, He helps us to grow and even disciplines as we need it because of His enduring love. When we receive His spirit we are freed from the bondage of the enemy and we receive the “spirit of adoption whereby we cry Abba, Father” (Romans 8:15).

“Yet to all who received Him, to those who believed in His name, He gave the right to become children of God” (John 1:12).

I want to be so wraAbba, father, daddypped up in God that it is obvious to everyone that I meet that I belong to Him! I want people to know that I am His child. I want my identity to rest firmly in Him! I want to encourage all of our readers to embrace your Christian identity. There is nothing greater than the salvation He offers us, but beyond that we have received something so special from God; we have received the right to call him Daddy!

In His Love,

Rebekah L.

Rolling With the Punches

We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed; ~ II Corinthians 4:8-9 KJV

Through suffering, our bodies continue to share in the death of Jesus so that the life of Jesus may also be seen in our bodies. ~ II Corinthians 4:10 NIV

Tonight I got a flat tire. Right as I was pulling up to church my tire went flat. I essentially missed EVERYTHING- caroling, the dinner– but God is still good! I praise Him that it happened RIGHT as I was getting to the church.  I praise Him that it was an opportunity to invite the guy who changed my tire to the church.  I praise Him that He is good in ALL things!! I know my God can turn ANY situation into good (Romans 8:28).

Tonight my mom called me up to encourage me.  I thank God for her.  She was like “I’ve been praying for you honey and I felt God say this was just a Job moment.” That is exactly how I’ve been feeling lately.  God wants to SHINE through my situations.  He wants to shine by showing a reversal of the situation with me potentially never becoming a doctor.  He wants to shine by showing that I can get a flat but He can use it for good.  He wants to shine by having told Satan “have you considered my handmaiden [Rebekah M.]?” He wants to shine.

Jesus,

Shine through me.  Let everything be done in Your timing.  I praise You. I thank You that You count me worthy.  I thank You Lord! I praise You Jesus!!! There is NONE like you!!! I thank You Jesus that You are good even in the midst of the storm!! I thank You Jesus that You are full of grace and truth.  I love You Jesus.  I WILL praise You in this storm. Bless these readers. Bless those who are going through a storm to see Your hands.  Bless those who are in a season of favor to recognize it and claim their blessings! Bless my dear, wonderful Lord.  I love You with all my heart.

Rebekah M.

Fighting Children

The LORD shall fight for you, and ye shall hold your peace. ~Exodus 14:14

Tonight I watched kids at a home church.  It was quite the experience.  Towards the end, one of the children (who I will now refer to as “Bobby”) threw a ball very hard at another child (“Joey”), so much so the second child started crying.  I told Bobby to apologize but he refused, saying he was not sorry. Joey became VERY angry and walked right up to him… I quickly made him back away and told him not to fight him- that God told us to turn the other cheek and to let Him fight our battles.  I then put Bobby in the corner but he refused to stay there.  I then had to hold him there as gently as I could while still keeping control on him staying in the corner despite him punching, pinching, and kicking the whole time. In the end, Bobby did eventually apologize to Joey after being in the corner for over five minutes.

For me, this four year old child was not too much of a challenge- just picking him up under his arms was enough to set him back in the corner and when he’d kick the walls to push me, I could easily lean my body back and keep him in the corner.  I was very much in control of how much he was able to do and yet did not hurt him one bit.  If these two children had duked it out like Joey had wanted, Joey might have gotten hurt even though he was not the one at fault.  As I described this event to my parents on the way home tonight, it struck me just how much it could be applied to our lives as adults!

God’s Word says to let the Lord fight our battles- we just need to hold our peace! Just imagine, our enemies are to Him like that little four year old was to me- easy to deal with despite the kicking and large amounts of protesting from him.  When we try to fight our enemies ourselves, we have so much potential for getting hurt when it is just child’s play for God!  So dear readers, sit back and let God fight your battles for you  and know that not only is He doing it all, He’s keeping you safe by asking you not to involve yourself in retribution for what has been done to you!!!!

Jesus, 

Thank You for protecting me as You fight my battles! Thank You for being such a wonderful, loving Father.  I love You Jesus with all my heart 🙂 

Rebekah M. 

Suspect A Trap (When Sadness Creeps In Part 2)

In continuing my current trend of adding to (mooching from?) the posts of my fellow blog writers (as opposed to sharing original thoughts), yesterday I read Rebekah L’s post When Sadness Creeps In. Then I proceeded to text her with my every opinion on the topic. Through her replies and our discussion, God revealed even more. This resulted in two things: 1) a serious need for a better text plan; and 2) a reason to rejoice in the Lord all over again.

As I was reading it, I relived my own struggle with depression, and how my ability to cope with it is directly tied in to my spiritual walk. I also realized that I know of two kinds of sadness in the Bible. The first is the sort one would feel after having a bad day or being hurt by somebody. The second is a more pervasive, weighty sorrow that I associate more with true depression. Yes, it existed. But one thing I’ve noticed is, depression in the Bible does not usually stand alone. Usually, depression goes hand in hand with a time of intercession.

The more I thought about it and went to God with it, the more it just started to make sense. Someone whose heart has been bruised and battered, who has felt pervasive sadness and pain and loss, can look at someone who’s lost and relate to them. Showing Jesus that person becomes less about talking at them about who Jesus is and what they should do to get closer to Him, and more just connecting with their heart. Someone who has been both enveloped by depression and enveloped by the peace of Jesus Christ can reach a lost person on such a deeper level. They can look at this lost person, see where they’re at, and join them there in love – because they know that place. They can also look ahead to where Jesus is; they can see the road that needs to be traveled and the light at the end of the tunnel. Someone in the midst of deep pain can’t necessarily see a way out of it. But someone who has been through it can. And that someone can bridge the gap on such a deeper level than somebody who doesn’t relate to the emotions being felt. That’s what deep intercessory prayer does – we stand in the gap for someone who needs a breakthrough of Jesus. And how much more heartfelt our prayers are when our compassion and love comes from a place of true understanding!

That is the way God would have us use our depression – as a way to draw closer to Him, more dependent on Him, and then ultimately, while He does protect us from our past He also uses it to make up the vessel we are. He is amazing that way – we may not be proud of where we’ve been, but He ensures that we didn’t go there for no reason, that our suffering wasn’t pointless. Thanks Jesus! This, in case you didn’t notice, is the reason to rejoice that I mentioned above. Having traveled the road we have and taken the hits we have, we can now be the exact vessel Jesus needs to use. Maybe someone whose vessel is shinier and less chipped isn’t right for this particular task. And Jesus knows that – He made each of us, after all. Our deepest, darkest moments turned out to be useful. Praise God!

This is why it’s really too bad that so many of us feel shame and guilt over our struggles. I believe this negativity is a lie from Satan himself. He reads our cues, multiplies our sorrow, and tries to turn it into a time of self-doubt and self-loathing. Often, he succeeds. Jesus would have this be a time to draw closer to Him, and instead we hide from Him. Jesus would have this be a time when we use our pain to relate to the pain of others so that we can love deeper and start to see with God’s heart. Satan would have this be a time to pity ourselves or get bogged down and chained by the weight.

So when sadness does come, please don’t hide. Besides, even if you do, Jesus still sees you. But He can’t help you unless you open your heart up to Him and let Him in. Transparency can be key here. When you feel ashamed by emotions, I implore you to suspect a trap. Find a friend you can confide in – yes, you open yourself up to judgement when you discuss yourself. But you also open yourself up to prayer and support, which gets you through it so much faster and grounds you again in your true identity as a servant of Christ.

My prayers are with you. If you’re struggling with something specific and want prayer for it, write to me at being.rebekah.a@gmail.com. God bless!

~Rebekah A

Song of the Day: Break Every Chain by Will Reagan and United Pursuit

I was recently talking to my mom (more like she was talking to me lol) about how Jesus is so often taken out of things. I’m passionate about baptism in Jesus name because Acts 4:12 tells us that there is no other name under heaven, given among men whereby we must be saved.  The power is in His name. The name of Jesus washes away sins. The name of Jesus saves us from death in the split second moments of our lives- potential car accidents, those who would attack us, and more.  One of my friends- the one that I noted before as being the kind of guy I would like to date- told me about how he was one walking at the mall area and he went to cross and this one car was speeding and would have hit him and somehow, even though he had been on the road, and keeping eye contact with the driver the whole time, he was on the sidewalk. What a mighty God we serve!

The name of Jesus breaks chains. It changes lives. Not because it is simply a name- but it is the name of the One who gave His life for us. He chose it for a reason. He has become our salvation. Not only from sin, but from every problem in our life. Financial chains, poor health chains, memory issue chains, relationship chains- Jesus can break them all away from us when we just let Him.

Thank You Jesus. Thank You beautiful, wonderful Jesus. Thank You that Your name is all that we need.

I Love You Jesus with all my heart.

Rebekah M.

 

Perfect Peace

 “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.” –Isaiah 26:3

Yesterday through Facebook I got a frantic message that a very good friend of mine was in a motorcycle accident. It was a terrifying moment for me. I kept rereading the words and trying to make sense of them. I felt incredibly helpless. This friend lives on the other side of the globe and there was nothing I could do to help him. Or even to get more information.

How did it happen? Was he hurt? Would he be okay? Is he in the hospital?

I had so many questions and so little information. I was scared of losing him. “Please please please let him be okay”, I prayed, feeling the emotion welling up inside me. Irrationally, I considered going to the airport immediately to catch the next plane to get to where he is. There was a time that he and I had planned to get married and I still love him deeply even if the nature of that love has shifted. To consider that he might be seriously injured and I wasn’t with him was more than I knew how to handle. I really did not know what to do with myself. I kept refreshing my Facebook page over and over again, hoping for a new message from his friend. I was desperate for more information. I felt paralyzed. Absolutely helpless. The fear rising up in me was fierce.

Then suddenly it occurred to me that even from half way across the world, there was something I could do for him. I could trust God, and I could pray. My focus then shifted from the situation to God. I remembered that God is the Creator, the Almighty, and our Healer. Everything is in His hands. When I began to meditate on that, I immediately felt peace. I knew God was taking care of the situation. This time when I prayed, I prayed with the assurance that God was in control and no matter what happened He would still be in control. I reminded myself that this man knows the Lord. If the very worst should happen, he is still safe in the Lord’s care. Regardless of how long he has life on this earth, he has the promise of eternal life with the King.

I became completely filled with His peace. It is difficult to even explain it, but every ounce of fear left me. I was able to completely surrender the situation to Him. I continued to pray for my friend for mercy and healing, but it was no longer a prayer out of selfish desperation. It was a prayer based on who the Lord is and knowing what He is capable of doing. Mostly, I just prayed that the Lord’s will be done. I knew without a doubt that it would be.

A few hours later I got the message that my friend will be fine. He is scraped up, bruised up, and has a broken wrist, but he has no internal injuries. He will make a full recovery. The worst of my fears were not even remotely realized. If I had not surrendered to God, I would have spent all the time making myself sick with worry. All of my worry would not have accomplished anything.

I praise God that he is okay! Thank you Jesus for protecting my friend! I know it could have been much worse and the mercy of the Lord has kept him for another day. Thank you, Jesus for your peace in the midst of a storm. Thank you for calming the waves of fear and teaching me once again to trust in you!

Dear Reader, when you feel helpless, when a situation is beyond your control; it is never beyond God. He will give you perfect peace if you trust Him to handle every situation that comes up in life. In scary moments when loved ones may be hurt or in danger, give all of your fears and concerns the Lord. He will carry you through every difficult circumstance in your life if you let Him.

-Rebekah L.

Letter to a Stranger

This is from an email I was going to write someone …

I’m not even sure why I’m sharing this with you- a virtual stranger, but I’ve found when I allow myself to be transparent, people are encouraged, challenged, or touched by Jesus. This whole “seeking Jesus thing” is really not going as I have planned.

I know what I need to do and yet I just am fighting it- I’m fighting Him. I just… don’t want to push so hard anymore.  Dig so much.  He provided all that I needed/wanted during my desert time and yet a huge part of me is soo hesitant to go back into that…. both guys I dated I felt so strongly that God was in it… at first… I prayed so much against meeting my most recent ex if Jesus didn’t have anything for us to learn/grow from it. Clearly He must have, but part of me is angry, frustrated that once again, He allowed some guy to come into my life and rip into me. Just like how He allowed the first to rip me to shreds.  

How is it that I can charge Him with the sins of others and yet not see that although He willingly takes the blame, He did not actually inflict the pain? Why is it that I feel like I need to forgive Him for not watching out for me when He is the one who has forgiven me of so much?  Why do I always feel like I give so much of who I am so freely to others and all they do is see it, rip it to shreds, and throw it in the trash? Where is my Isaac that I thought would be here and why can’t I learn to fully be content in my moments? Why can’t I just truly wait in peace in Him and the promises He has for me?  My heart wants to cry “Where are You Jesus?” and yet I know where He is… He’s waiting… but just like how I’m afraid of trusting any guys again, I’m afraid of trusting Him since part of me blames Him for even allowing them in my life in the first place.  Why must growing and learning hurt SO MUCH?  I miss the safety of not knowing. I miss the bliss of being naive to the world. 

I realized while talking to a close friend of mine that I had become the Ex#2 in my relationship with Jesus- texting no more than once or twice a day and talking once or twice a week on the phone.  Jesus doesn’t want that.  Jesus doesn’t want me to be Ex #2 in my relationship with Him.  He wants to hear from me every day as much as I wanted to hear from Ex #2.  It doesn’t detract from His worth when I don’t talk to Him, it just means that He just wants to get to know me better and let me know Him better.

Yet part of me fights…. I realize I haven’t allowed myself to fully grieve over the fact that once again I was dumped. I hurt from the shame of being dumped again. I hurt from feeling like I was ready to put my heart out there and was once again pushed away.  I hurt and part of me wants to blame God since I can’t take my anger out on my ex.

Lord, 

Just take it.  Bind me up again.  Release me from this pain.  Purge me of the darkness and dirt. Help me find what You wanted me to take away from the relationship.  I’m going to stop fighting You. I see now- it wasn’t Your fault and it’s not fair to be angry at You when I really want to be angry with myself and my ex. If You want me to be single forever, so be it.  If You want me to marry, whomever it may be, so be it. I give it all to You now. Whomever or even no body, You make that choice for me.  You lead and guide my steps.  You show me what I must do.  Be my everything again.  Help me not be distracted by guys but let the right guy become an encouragement to me.. if there is to be a guy.  Let him edify my walk with You as I edify his.  Let our future children (if I have any) glorify Your name from the moment they can speak.  Nothing would be better than if their first word was “Jesus.”  Lord, I so badly want all that I am and do to be consumed by You and the things of You.  I’m sorry I was angry at You. I’m sorry I blamed You when all You wanted was for me to find comfort in You.  I love You Jesus with all my heart. 

Rebekah M. 

Answers with Questions

So…. my boyfriend and I now broke up… So I guess he’s ex #2?  I just got off the phone with my mom and I’m SO thankful that she is in my life.  We prayed over the phone together and I couldn’t ask for a better mom.  He said that he asked me out too early and that we should just go back to being friends and even tough I’m not sure I said it out loud… I agree. We did date WAY too early. I don’t know why I had that much caution with another friend whom I had known for years and would never put me on the back burner like this guy did and yet with ex #2 I threw caution to the wind.

I do wonder though, because I’ve repeatedly been reading on how all these kings of Israel would follow a bad king, turn back to God and God would be please and yet over and over again it mentions “but the high places were not torn down.”  Is that my problem? I didn’t tear the high places down last time from ex #1 which is why I fell into kissing etc. with ex #2? Yet once again I still was able to stay safe from sleeping with him but I still passed the lines I had put up.

We’re going to remain friends he says. Ironically- after we’ve broken up- I’m meeting his parents tomorrow morning. It feels rude to just up and disappear after the plans have already been made and honestly- I still feel like God having said “you need to see things through” might be saying more? I’m so tired and confused I don’t know.

Pray for me dear readers- yet once again I dated a guy who broke up with me right before a big test- this time is my second boards for my medical license… I feel a fool for having allowed yet another guy into my life who would do this but I have to admit that I did push him a bit to this in a way because I asked him if he was in or out. He was clearly pulling out and I wasn’t going to have another “dumped via facebook” in my life again.  No woman deserves to be dumped via facebook.

Jesus,

As my mom said on the phone- I turn my eyes back to You once again. I struggled with it while I was dating ex #2 so I guess since the distraction is now gone, life can be good? Lord, please… I cannot take this too many more times. Just help me trust You with my life and learn to walk in Your ways.  No one can harm me when You are the one steering.  I love You Jesus with all my heart. Thank You that it’s not shattered like the first guy did. Thank You that You are wonderful and marvelous.  Thank You that there is none like You.  I worship You Jesus for You are good in all times and Your mercy endures forever.  I thank You Jesus for being my all in all.  I love You Lord with all my heart, mind, soul, and strength.

Rebekah M.