Monday, June 29, 2015

Bible Reading Challenge

I've been working on a new non-fiction book {A Closer Walk} for a little while. Now that summer is here and school is out, I'm finding much more time to write (this is how life works for us homeschooling moms - a little backwards). As I dive into the book and see God working in me, one of the things I've felt led to incorporate is a Bible Reading Challenge. The book has 31 sections (not to worry - they're all pretty short!). 

This reminded me of another author who said he read the Psalms and Proverbs each month; broken down to 5 Psalms a day and one Proverb, you can get through both books every month. I did it once. Now I'm ready to do it again, with a little added. Okay, a lot added - like the whole New Testament! 

As I dive into God's Word I am always blessed. 

And if I'm going to recommend my readers do this, then I need to have done it myself. It will be a lot of reading - that's what makes it a challenge - but I believe it will come with immeasurable rewards. 

The challenge starts July 1. I'd love to have you join me! You can follow me on Twitter or my Facebook page for daily reminders, encouragement, and updates. You won't be sorry!

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Is God Enough?

Have you ever asked the question: "Is God enough?"
My first reaction to this question is: "Of course He is!"
However, every time I choose my own way instead of surrendering to His way, my actions show that I'm not really sure God's enough.

     * Is He really enough to carry my pain?
     * Is He really enough to change my loved ones?
     * Is He really enough to be in charge of how I spend every minute of every day?
     * Is He really enough to lead me right every time, all the time?
     * Does He love enough?
     * Is He good enough?

The resounding answer is YES! Of course He is!!
So why is it so hard to surrender to Him?

Oh, if only I had an easy answer. But after focusing on surrendering to God for years now, I have found out that it is much more complex than I ever thought. I've also discovered that the more I desire to surrender, the more my selfish, self-centered, self-gratification-seeking flesh fights it. I have fed my flesh too regularly and that's why it rears its ugly head.

I'm reminded of Paul's lament about his struggle with the war between the flesh and the Spirit:

And I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature. I want to do what is right, but I can’t. I want to do what is good, but I don’t. I don’t want to do what is wrong, but I do it anyway. But if I do what I don’t want to do, I am not really the one doing wrong; it is sin living in me that does it.I have discovered this principle of life—that when I want to do what is right, I inevitably do what is wrong. ~Romans 7:19-21

I'm relieved that I am not alone. The struggle (the most intense, impactful) is real. God knows. And He has provided a way out. The way is to know Him, rely on Him, trust Him, and obey Him.
I know I'll never do any of these perfectly, but God has provided a way to release me from the trap of sin through His Son Jesus (Romans 7:24).
I am free to surrender to Him. Or I can stay trapped in the slavery of sin, even though He's given me the key to let myself out.
So today my prayer is that I will get it from my head to my spirit that God is enough. 
For everything.