Tuesday, August 06, 2013

Take Time To Ponder

I love this devotional that was sent to me. Lately God has been telling me to ponder the things He is doing in my life. It is something He has been telling me for about the past month. To ponder the promises He has given me. I love how Mary pondered those things in her heart. It is one of my favorite scriptures. 

Take Time To Ponder

Mary kept all these things and pondered them in her heart. —Luke 2:19

Parents love to remember the developmental milestones of their children.
They will record in a baby book when their little ones first roll over, then
crawl, and take their first steps. Often they will take photographs and save
baby clothing to bring back the memories of those precious experiences.

According to Luke 2:19, Mary, the mother of Jesus, kept a baby book of
sorts—in her heart. She treasured the promises that had been given about her
Son and “pondered them.” The Greek word for “ponder” means “placing together for comparison.” Mary had heard of great things concerning her Son from angels and shepherds (1:322:17-18). As His life unfolded, she would compare those promises with how her Son acted to fulfill them.

Our faith will be strengthened and we will be encouraged when we meditate on what the Scriptures say about God and compare it with the way He works in our own lives (John 14:21). He is a God who answers prayer (1 John 5:14-15), comforts us in our suffering (2 Cor. 1:3-4), and provides for our needs (Phil. 4:19).

When we take time to ponder, we will see the faithfulness of our great God.
Pardon for sin and a peace that endureth,
Thine own dear presence to cheer and to guide,
Strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow
Blessings all mine, with ten thousand beside! —Chisholm

God gives by promise that we may take by faith.

Hope Restored

So these are the first few posts I have done in over a year. I have not felt like writing on my blog at all the last year. This whole past year I have been in such a dark place. Just struggles with my conversion to the Catholic church. I had a few moments of light in between the struggles but those moments were few and far between it seemed. I really had not anticipated how hard my conversion from the protestant church to the Catholic church would be for me. I just took one day at a time. But this last year seemed to be the hardest. I was growing spiritually and learning so much about the Catholic faith but in my personal life it was like something had died. The worst feeling ever. The up and down moments in my life over the past five years of my conversion had almost taken its toll on me. And I was about at the point of just giving up. All I wanted was to be with Jesus and to follow Him. And so many people did not understand my conversion. It made it so hard for me. I just felt like telling God this is too hard. It is too hard to be Catholic. But God never would let me give up totally. I am very sensitive person and it seemed any little negative comment that was made to me about my conversion just went straight to my heart. And those comments would hurt so much. But somehow God helped me through it all. So I have been reflecting on all I have been through lately. And all God has brought me through.

This summer in June I had a chance to go on a mission trip to Ecuador. I needed this trip. It seemed to be a turning point for me. Going on this trip I just really did not know if I had much more to give. But something in me felt I needed to go. And I think Mary had her hand in sending me on this trip also. I really felt her presence there with me. On this trip I received so much. More than I was expecting. Ephesians 3:20 says "Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us." 

I met so many wonderful people. People who lifted me up and gave me some hope again. And just being able to help other people in need was good for me. So I came back to a renewed sense of hope. I received so much healing on this trip. I was starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel I suppose.  

God also sent me on several other conferences this summer. And I needed to be at them all! I received so much! I just felt God was filling me with hope again. And I guess I needed a lot of hope because He sent me on about five different conferences. All the conferences had the same message about it being a new season. And I can feel things shifting in my life somewhat. When I got back from my mission trip I picked up a book that I had bought some time ago. I had never really read it. It is called "The Way" by JoseMaria Escriva. But for whatever reason I picked it up one day after my trip and opened it and my eyes landed on these words "You've done well, even though you have fallen so low. You've done well, because you humbled yourself, because you straightened yourself out, because you filled yourself with hope--and that hope brought you back again to His Love. Don't look so amazed: you've done well! You rose up from the ground. "Surge"--Arise"-- cried anew the mighty voice--"et ambula" (get up) "and walk!" Now to work.

I was just stunned. I knew this was the Lord speaking to me. Those words went straight to my heart. I was just kinda surprised at what I had just read. So here I am with a new sense of hope and God telling me to get to work! So I have actually started to feel I can begin writing and sharing again some of the things God speaks to me. And I felt on the mission trip God saying to me "I want you to start writing again." 

So I guess I have some new marching orders. It always seems that when you about to give up completely that is when God shows up. 

It is becoming for you, O Mary, 
to be mindful of us,
as you stand near Him
who bestowed upon you all graces,
for you are the Mother of God and our Queen.
Come to our aid for the sake of the King,
the Lord God and Master who was born of you.
For this reason you are called "full of grace."
Be mindful of us, most holy Virgin,
and bestow on us gifts 
from the riches of your graces,
O Virgin full of grace.