Sharing

Stolen {A Review}

Stolen

 

I recently finished the book Stolen by Katariina Rosenblatt, PhD, this was an eye-opening book on the horrors of sex trafficking and how it happens here in the United States.  While it was a very good book however it was not a book that I enjoyed.  I don’t mind reading about serious topics and generally enjoy it yet I could not connect well with this book.  It seemed like the author wrote the book purposefully just to promote her organization There is H.O.P.E. For Me, Inc.

The book was eye-opening in revealing just how easily children can fall into sex trafficking and how manipulative the people can be.  It also goes to show me the many reasons I have to be thankful that I never fell into anything like this.  It did well to explain why people find it so hard to escape from this kind of lifestyle even when they want to do just that.

The authors story is an amazing one, because she shares the ups and downs that she has faced to become free.  All in all it was a good book, just not one I felt a personal connection with.

 

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Sharing

Breathing Room {Review}

Breathing Room

 

This book caught me from the introduction, I found myself sharing pictures of quotes.  It is a much-needed book, a combination of recovery and Christianity, Leeana Tankersley has reached out to a population that is often ignored.  Most Christian living books offer helpful advice, yet many come from a perspective of having it all together. This book is different in the fact that it approaches things from a recovery standpoint.  What I mean by recovery isn’t just a recovery from addictions, although it may help with that, but a recovery from the times that life has sapped you of everything you have to give and you simply have nothing left.  This book is for those that have been there and need to understand that life goes on and it gets better.  This book is for those people who feel like they are the only ones who have ever felt THIS way.  She talks about coming apart and how hard it is, and the questions we may have about ourselves and our faith as we go through this struggle.  This is not a typical book about rest, or even about falling apart or getting yourself together.  This is a refreshing view of doing life while giving yourself grace, taking responsibility and giving yourself permission to be human and have feelings that might not line up with everyone else’s view of reality.

This is the perfect book for that person who feels like they just don’t know how to go on, or they don’t understand how they got in this mess to begin with.  She gives you practical steps and principals for processing things and for reclaiming your life.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Revell Reads Blog Review program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.
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Sharing

On Resting and Waiting

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I have gotten out of the habit of writing daily. With trying to figure out what is going on with my health that keeps me exhausted all the time and working 48 hours a week, I haven’t had a lot of words.  Today though I would like to share some of the things that I am learning.  There is an importance to resting and simply being still before Jesus.  Sometimes we need to simply be with Christ and not striving to accomplish anything.

Over and over God is teaching me this need for rest, and a Godly balance.  I also find that I am in a period of waiting for direction from God.  I found this posted on Facebook the other day and jotted it down, I don’t recall who shared it….but I wanted to share.

Waiting. It means you don’t have the control you’d fought for, agonized over, attempted to create. It means you must surrender what you think is best and the time frame you think it must take place. It means you trust that God does indeed, know better than you, has your best interest in mind and will not leave you, forsake you or forget you.

I have also joined with Revell reads to do some book reviews and I will be posting them among my other posts as I find a new rhythm for this season.  I have two posts planned for you really soon.

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Faith

Lord Undo Me

From the Archives Originally Posted October 8, 2012

I heard this prayer on Klove, last year, and it was really powerful.  I had thought of it again recently and wanted to share it here.

Lord Undo Me

I don’t really worship these days
I don’t really stand up to praise you with songs
Or prayers or actions
or with anything
I am full of all the right moves
I am full of all the right words
I am full of all the right religion
But it is all just illusion
I am really
Lonely
Lost
Calloused
Jaded
Cynical
Too religious
Too realistic
and well really just to lazy
to worship you anymore
I have lost my first love
I have lost the joy of your presence
But most of all I have lost the fear of your glory

Father I need to see you again
Like Isaiah I want to stand in awe of your glory
To fall down at your feet
To come face to face with your
Perfection,
Radiance,
Goodness,
Holiness,
Awesomeness
I want to stand before you and see you for who you are
and me for who I am
I want to be undone

I want to know me for who I really am
I want to see the depths of my heart
And know that you are the only way
You are the only truth
You are the only life
I want to see me and understand
What it really must have taken for you to
Love me
Care for me
See me
Speak to me
Want me
Communicate with me
Die for me
Die for me
Die for me

Lord, I want to stand in that place where all I can see is your glory
And my sin
Because in that place I can’t help but worship you.
Lord let me come undone
Undo my heart
Lord, undo my heart
break down these walls that I love so much
No, wait don’t,
I’m scared I don’t know if I can handle this
don’t
But I can’t live this way anymore
I can’t stand here in this half-life
this going through the motions life
this not really alive life
Father, I need you so come in and do what you must
Cut out the tumor on my heart
Break down the walls that I love
Lord let me come undone
Undo my heart
let me worship you again

*Blake Williams

Original Post  http://www.klove.com/blog/jd/post/2011/10/31/Undo-Me-Poem.aspx

****Again I did not write this, and I am not taking credit for it, but I simply wanted to share.

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Faith, Intentional Living

Stepping Out

In every life there are seasons, some are harder than others.  In some seasons you can see dreams and you can see progress and somehow that is where life now finds me.  As always though when it comes to seeing progress and seeing dreams, that does not mean that things will be easy.  There is always a cost, sometimes a small one, sometimes a bigger one.  Currently the cost is leaving my comfort zone to reach into the unknown.  Those of you who know me know that I love routine, and I am not a huge fan of change.

I find that sometimes my obedience is delayed because of this.  Sometimes the risk of failure appears so big, fears and insecurities speak so loudly, that I resist.  I find excuses, I delay, but eventually I always end up at that point of surrender.  The struggles are real, and I fight with it a long time.  The insecurities can eat a person alive if you are not careful.  But there is something that is bigger, something that outweighs all the problems. That something is knowing that if this is Gods plan then the battle has been won.

This past weekend I was able to attend the Beth Moore Simulcast at our church.  It amazed me how much she spoke to my current circumstances.  It served as a great reminder to me of what really defines me, and what does not.  I want to share with you a declaration that she shared with us, but since I do not have permission to share her image you will need to visit her Identity Declaration.

 

God has changed my heart lately and after fighting it for almost a year, I have agreed to lead a small bible study group for women.  A friend from church was willing to host it for me.  For some of you this may seem like nothing, but for someone who has struggled in the past with social anxiety disorder and is an introvert, it’s kind of huge.  The group is only 6-7 people.  But that makes it perfect sized for me.  Not only has God handpicked these women, but He has been in every detail.  I came away from the first meeting amazed and greatly blessed.

I see how God can use this for the bigger vision that He has said I can do.  But more I see Him creating in me a heart for community.  I have never desired to spend time around others, yet I find myself making time to meet with people.  I am learning that in this world with so many people hurting that community is one thing that many people have neglected.  I know that I have never really made time for meeting with others, and have rarely been invited to do so.  Now though it seems that God may use my loneliness, and this new desire for people to draw me into the community that He created us for.

It is a coming out of my comfort zones, but I have never been more blessed.

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Intentional Living

Boundaries Regarding Technology

Rude, Cellphone

photo credit: Ed Yourdon via photopin cc

As I look around lately I can’t help but see that we have become a very rude society.  People sit together but they don’t talk to one another and they barely look at one another.  It is sad really.  We were created to be in community together, that was by Gods design.  Yet many people are so caught up in technology that they will not lay it down for face to face contact.

I’m not sure when we moved from technology as a helpful tool to letting it control every aspect of our lives.  This is something that I noticed greatly when I did not have my cell phone.  I would try to interact with people in the break room, but many people either did not hear me or they outright ignored me because they were more interested in what was happening online.  It is really sad that we have forsaken His design for something that alienates us further from that which is helpful and good for us.

I am currently spending a lot of time giving myself space so that I can pull back from the social media, and from blogging a bit, just so that I can reconnect with people in real life.  I had taken a small fast from all social media, but now I am trying to work on allowing myself to check it on occasion, but keeping it in moderation.  Instead I am making plans to meet face to face with friends, and spending more time in the Word and with Jesus, the greatest friend that we will ever have.

Do you find yourself with many plans throughout the day and then at the end of the day wondering if you even accomplished anything at all, even though you know that you spent hours online? I know that before I returned to work I did.  In fact, even after I started working I was struggling to balance my online activities and responsibilities with my need for rest, and my need for being in the Word.  I found that I simply could not find time for everything that I had done before.  After admitting defeat, I had to simply stop from everything that was not necessary.  While I was seeking rest, I also was seeking Him, and I prayed about what I really needed to be doing.  I find that I am still very much in the refining process and I do not have it together yet.  I may end up giving up social media again if I find moderation too hard to do.  But what I learned was invaluable.  Spending more time in the presence of the Lord has blessed me beyond what words can say, and honestly it is not worth it to me any longer to waste time that I could better spend with Him.

Relationships are blooming and I find that mostly I am fine without being on Facebook or Twitter regularly.  In fact, my time spent laughing and sharing face to face is irreplaceable.  I long for more community and I am so thankful that I let myself get so exhausted that stopping life as I knew it before was necessary.  I am falling more and more in love with the Word, and I feel more refreshed than I have in a long time.  I encourage you to give yourself the chance to step away from technology and begin to enjoy life as it was meant to be lived!

Do you feel that technology has made us rude?

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