Tag Archives: glimpsed glory

Session 6: Dressed for Success

16 Nov

 

  • Only when we love one another well –out of His heart and not out of our own—will we have something that attracts a watching world.
  • Only when we are tender to the hurts of one another will the injured and wounded come out the shadows.
  • Only when we walk in forgiveness as we have been forgiven will the lost step forward.
  • And only when we wear grace for one another on our sleeves will we dress in the humility and gentleness that will turn heads.

You Sweet Sister have been clothed by the Most High. The Name of Jesus covers you from head to toe. The Spirit Himself has dressed you in holiness. And the Elohim, the All of God, the eternal, independent, true and holy One, has crowned you with life and Girlfriend, believe me when I tell you –it looks good on you. May you wear it well!

 

12 So, as those who have been chosen of God, holy and beloved, put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience; 13 bearing with one another, and forgiving each other, whoever has a complaint against anyone; just as the Lord forgave you, so also should you. 14 Beyond all these things put on love, which is the perfect bond of unity.  Colossians 3:12-14 NASB

THANK YOU FOR THE JOY IN THE JOURNEY!

Session 5: Rooted in the Heart of God

9 Nov

Wonder not if you are loved, protected, desired, and cared for, Sweet Daughter of God, when you encounter disappointment and disillusionment with yourself – grace does not depend on you.

 

Do not try to puzzle out His affection, His heart provision, or His ache to see you walk in redemption when you meet with seasons of darkness and distress. CLAIM THE LIGHT OF THE WORLD AS YOUR OWN!

 

It is not the will of God that you should be downcast, yoked to shame, or chained to the past –fear not; you are free. Breathtakingly free!

 

  • Free to look up and gaze upon glory.
  • Free to peer into the heavenlies and anticipate the certainty to come.
  • Free to be filled with Hope and life here and now and confidently expect the joy of eternity.

Colossians 3:1-3 from the Message . . .

1-2 So if you’re serious about living this new resurrection life with Christ, act like it. Pursue the things over which Christ presides. Don’t shuffle along, eyes to the ground, absorbed with the things right in front of you. Look up, and be alert to what is going on around Christ—that’s where the action is. See things from his perspective.3-4 Your old life is dead. Your new life, which is your real life—even though invisible to spectators—is with Christ in God. He is your life.

Session 4: Laying Down Roots

2 Nov

Receiving is not a passive activity.  It’s pulling up close beside a thing and reaching out by volitional choice for all that is made available.

Therefore as you have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him,  having been firmly rooted and now being built up in Him and established in your faith, just as you were instructed, and overflowing with gratitude.  Colossians 2:6-7

What will we reach for of Jesus?

Out time is now and our place is here.  Our God, who is a consuming fire, is a blaze within us!  He has appointed us and anointed us to be convinced of Him on the inside and bear the fruit of that conviction on the outside.  We better lace up our hiking boots Girlfriend because we’ve been called to the top of the mountain!

Daughters of the Star Breather!

20 Oct

WE ARE DAUGHTERS OF THE STAR BREATHER!
Made by the Creator of Heaven and Earth, Brought to life by the death and resurrection of the Son, called by name, placed here and now to serve in the army of saints!  Set in against the darkness to absolutely shine!

You are huge to the heart of God and He has given His all that we might be women

  • Steeped in faith
  • Living to love
  • Anchored in hope
  • Fueled with the Holy Spirit to burn Bright!

And here’s what I know Sister –A Holy Fire like that will not be contained!

 

A Body filled with those kind of women, no matter how small, will begin to believe beyond themselves, to love one another in the Name of Jesus, and to stand firm in the confident expectation of the Hope of Glory.

May it begin with us!

Our Roots Are Showing . . . Introduction Parts One and Two

14 Oct

Sister, are you not under attack and tempted at every turn if not to deny Jesus certainly to dethrone Him? The question is how will you respond? Will we trade the riches of Jesus for the things this world has to offer or be women who stand firm in the truth?

DIFFICULT TIMES WILL COME . . .

But realize this, that in the last days difficult times will come. For men will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, revilers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, unloving, irreconcilable, malicious gossips, without self-control, brutal, haters of good, treacherous, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, holding to a form of godliness, although they have denied its power; Avoid such men as these. For among them are those who enter into households and captivate weak women weighed down with sins, led on by various impulses, always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.

We must live it well in front of the ones who looking to us to forge their future. We must live it well in front of those who are entrusting us to build a faith heritage of life and love. We must hang on to the Isaiah 65:16 God of Truth, cling to the John 14:6 Way, Truth and Life, and grab hold of the John 16:13 Spirit of Truth and refuse to let go.

Praying we find ourselves stirred to action and application as we study the Book of Colossians together!  Have a blessed day Sister!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It Might Be Time to Change the Channel!

27 Aug

God tells us flat out in the book of Jeremiah that we will begin to look like the things we pursue. The things we exalt and make the goal of life move from being the thing we desire to possess, to the thing that possesses us. That makes such sense because the things that we love, that we chase after, and I’ll be so bold as to say lust after, control us.

                         This is what the Lord says:

“What fault did your ancestors find in me,
    that they strayed so far from me?
They followed worthless idols
    and became worthless themselves. . . . Jeremiah 2:5

Our pursuit shapes the way we use our time, where we invest our resources, and even our friend circle. Not one area of life goes unscathed or escapes the tentacles of our pursuit.

Do not run until your feet are bare
    and your throat is dry.
But you said, ‘It’s no use!
    I love foreign gods,
    and I must go after them. . . . Jeremiah 2:25

Rolling all of this over in my mind and asking myself what I pursue with everything I am and praying in the back of my brain that my pursuit is of the Who and not a what, made me remember a Shel Silverstein poem I used to read to my Sweet Girl when she was little . . . Jimmy Jet and the TV Set.

I’ll tell you the story of Jimmy Jet–
    And you know what I tell you is true.
He loved to watch his TV set
    Almost as much as you.

He watched all day, he watched all night
    Till he grew pale and lean,
From ‘The Early Show’ to ‘The Late Show’
    And all the shows in between.

He watched till his eyes were frozen wide,
     And his bottom grew into his chair.
And his chin turned into a tuning dial,
    And antennae grew out of his hair.

And his brains turned into TV tubes,
    And his face to a TV screen.
And two knobs saying ‘vert.’ and ‘horiz.’
    Grew where his ears had been.

And he grew a plug that looked like a tail
    So we plugged in little Jim.
And now instead of him watching TV
    We all sit around and watch him.

   Shel Silverstein

Quite the cautionary tale! Full of wisdom if we’re willing to take it in. I can’t expect to be consumed with the temporal things of this world and not look like I belong here.  Like this is my country and my home.

Sister, we will be changed by what we run after and where we fix our eyes. We will resemble what we pursue and our pursuit will shape who we become.

creation swap useless tvn ribbet

Lord,
     Let me fix my eyes on Jesus.
     Let me pursue you with everything I am.
     Give me the desire to look like you.
     To be holy because you are holy.

     Influence who I am in the here and now.
     Shape me to be who you want me to be.
     In Jesus Name Amen.

JESUS HAD STORMS . . . WE HAVE JESUS!

25 Aug

John 12:22-28

22-23 Philip went and told Andrew. Andrew and Philip together told Jesus. Jesus answered, “Time’s up. The time has come for the Son of Man to be glorified.

24-25 “Listen carefully: Unless a grain of wheat is buried in the ground, dead to the world, it is never any more than a grain of wheat. But if it is buried, it sprouts and reproduces itself many times over. In the same way, anyone who holds on to life just as it is destroys that life. But if you let it go, reckless in your love, you’ll have it forever, real and eternal.

26 “If any of you wants to serve me, then follow me. Then you’ll be where I am, ready to serve at a moment’s notice. The Father will honor and reward anyone who serves me.

27-28 “Right now I am storm-tossed. And what am I going to say? ‘Father, get me out of this’? No, this is why I came in the first place. I’ll say, ‘Father, put your glory on display.’”  The Message

Sisters, these were the words of Jesus as He contemplated the Cross. “Storm-tossed” seems a small term to describe the agony He was about to endure but is it not one we can identify with? The storm of sickness, loss, disappointment? We encounter what we often see as the less-than moments in life and we feel tossed about by our situation.  The water may calm briefly but before we know it the waves have crashed over us again and the tide is rising around our necks.

How often do you and I react with nothing but a strong desire to get out from under the waves and crawl up on the beach?  How often do we long to pop open a beach umbrella and simply sit with our toes in the warm sand, to just be done with the thing rather than ache to fulfill the purpose for which He has sent us . . . especially when our purpose might require suffering?

Do I have what it takes to remain in the water even when I can’t see why in the world I needed to leave my comfortable spot in the sand?  Will you and I stay put, no matter how dark the sky becomes or how choppy the waves, and trust Him to be our Rescuer?

Do we have the courage to live with the pain and strain this temporal world so often dishes out to be part of the kingdom story, the better story, the love story of God?  The answer to this question is absolutely YES! with Jesus

The same Jesus who uttered these words, who stood firm in the face of every life storm . . . lives within us. It is He who will provide the ache, the courage, and the holy desire to fulfill our purpose. He will never leave us to face the waves or stormy waters alone.

God held the water back and led His people through without a single foot slipping.  He’ll do the same for you.  He’ll do the same for me. He will hold despair to the left and sorrow to the right; guiding us through on solid ground straight into the arms of Jesus.

And if we stand at the water’s edge and it seems those stormy seas are refusing to part, then we know and we believe with everything we are that our Jesus is going to pull us to the very top of those murky depths and place our precious feet on top of every wave.

Girlfriend, you hang on to Him as that water rises.  And you know, to the marrow of your bones that if that water doesn’t part, if He doesn’t calm that storm with His hand or speak a word to send those waves away, then your Jesus plans to swoop from heaven straight into your circumstance and lead you through in a blaze of glory because Sister, no life storm can take us where the hand of Jesus cannot reach us!

creation swap storm hand Danielle Hartland 1374

#HeismyLifeGuard

 

The Carb Queen: My Glimpse of Glory

17 Nov

Nothing else in all of life is quite like looking into the face of my baby girl.  Nothing else produces that beautiful mix of ferocious tenderness I feel as I watch her navigating life and making her way one brave step at a time.  She doesn’t let life simply go by . . . she pulls it up close and lives all the minutes with everything she has.  Time with her Jesus is no exception.  She steps into every syllable of His Word and fully expects Him to the be the God who shows her great and unsearchable things she does not know . . . to be the Savior who will show Himself to her and the Spirit that will lead her into all truth.  True to His promise to be found by those who seek Him, He consistently reveals Himself to be the God of More to her and my heart is never more full than when I receive the 6 a.m. or the midnight text saying, “Mom, you won’t believe what He has let me see!”  Those moments for me are truly a glimpse of His glory and I thank my God for the gift of her every time.

Glimpsed Glory Welcomes

The Carb Queen: Filling up on the Bread of LifeMother and Daughter

 

Tom & Jerry Is Just a Cartoon

(Or What Delilah Taught Me about Perspective, Forgiveness, and Life)

By Britt Biddinger Stechly (carbohydratequeen.blogspot.com)

(To really understand this post, I’d recommend reading Judges 16 – the account of Samson and Delilah – but no pressure)

In ninth grade, my teacher (the regular author of this blog/my mom) had me do an exercise for Language Arts; in it, we read the same story twice. In the first version a starving cat chased down an interloping mouse. In the second, a mouse sought shelter from a harsh world only to be scared away by a cruel feline.

I think the story of Samson and Delilah has always been a cat and mouse story to me. The mean seductress (cat) lures the simple strong-man (mouse) into her arms, only to betray him at a moment’s notice!

Now, I’m not so sure. Maybe the cat isn’t wicked, maybe the mouse isn’t scared, maybe things aren’t as black and white as they once appeared and our characters are all dressed in layers of gray.

Delilah was, likely, a prostitute. Samson was “in love.”

Delilah isn’t Samson’s wife and she’s never recorded as having said, “Samson, I love you so much! Tell me how you can be bound so that I can help you guard against it, darling!” Nope.

Samson just keeps falling asleep at her place, likely after sex he paid for; despite the fact that he’s leaving himself pretty much defenseless. Delilah doesn’t seem like she’s even trying to be particularly sneaky.

He tells her how to bind him.

He wakes up bound exactly that way.

He keeps coming back to her.

I don’t think he returns out of love, but arrogance – I believe he forgot where his strength came from and thought no one could take him down, particularly not some random girl.

According to the Word, Samson had never known a life void of blessing. Literally, from the womb he was called and celebrated. I think it went to his head; he thought he was strong, but the truth is (ready? I’m about to blow your mind)

Samson was never strong – GOD is strong.

Delilah repeatedly asks Samson, “Why do you mock me?” but the only one Samson mocked is God. Samson continues spitting in the face of his calling over and over, utterly unafraid of the consequences.

In Samson’s story, Delilah is surely the living embodiment of the Woman Folly Proverbs warns against (Proverbs 9),

but she is not the villain – Samson’s pride is.

In her story, Delilah was almost certainly not a prostitute by choice. She was most likely sold into sex trafficking by her own family, to pay off their debt. She was in a horrible situation that wasn’t her design, in a godless country, and suddenly an opportunity to make so much money off just another dopey John falls into her lap and she takes it – maybe it was even enough money that she got to go home afterward. We’re not told that.

But one thing is for sure: Delilah was shown that money is the most important thing – certainly more important than her life – so why wouldn’t it be more important than some random guy? Sure he “loved” her, but it isn’t unlikely that a lot of men had “loved” her. She probably didn’t even know about his calling – he wasn’t acting like a Judge set apart to lead God’s people and she clearly didn’t know the Nazarite Vows. All she definitely knew about him was that he was freakishly strong and, if she could be responsible for his capture, he was her meal ticket.

She’s more than a prop in Samson’s story; she’s Rahab if God hadn’t intervened. She’s a poor, scared, probably teenaged girl who desperately wants out of a life that she didn’t choose.

Delilah is RahabDelilah isn’t a villain; she’s a victim.

She was taken advantage of by countless men – including one who was world renowned for his strength – so she took advantage right back.

I’m not saying Delilah did a good thing, but I truly believe that she wasn’t the one outside the will of God; Samson was.

In fact, if she were the “hero” of the story, it might even have been said that God used a sinful, wayward man to lift her out of a life of slavery and poverty. But she’s the “villain” so we don’t get to know what happens to her.

Maybe she was an evil temptress; but no one is born that way. Maybe she was a corrupt opportunist; but can someone who is a victim of a corrupted system, trapped at the whim of any man with enough money, ruined in the eyes of her society, really be blamed for this particular situation?

Or should it be the Judge of Israel, anointed by God and blessed with greater physical strength than any man, be held accountable for his arrogance, stupidity, and weakness of character?

In any case, God loves “Delilahs” and “Samsons”.

He loves all mess-ups and ragamuffins. We can place blame anywhere we like, but Christ covered it all with forgiveness.

So pray for the Delilahs in your life because with God’s healing they can become Rahabs. Never forget that no one but the Devil is a villain; everyone else is a soul God wants to see saved and

He can and will redeem any story.

Even Delilah. Even Samson. Even me. Even you.

But never let the Devil trick you, my love – you are not a Delilah. If you are a victim of circumstances far outside your control or have done things you are not proud of, you are still a Rahab!

You are chosen.

You are loved.

You are called.

I’m going to say this again,

God’s faithfulness CAN and WILL redeem ANY story.

Lean into that.

Let Him love you, rather than take advantage of you. Let Him take care of you, rather than use you. Let Him redeem you, instead of defile you.

You are worthy & you are loved & you are beautiful & you are enough & God has a plan for YOUR good, sweet lady. Let that sink into your very bones; allow it to fill you up and comfort you like a really good latte.

The world isn’t black and white, you’re not a cat or a mouse, you’re a complex and wild creation of the Author who longs to lavish you with a plotline far beyond your dreams or fantasies. It might not be easy but, because of God’s faithfulness, you can be assured of a happily ever after.

Carbohydrate Queen

*Thank you to BibleGateway for making the word accessible from one generation to another!

Unresolved Anger and Unhindered Grace . . .Which will you wear on your sleeve?

23 Oct

Ephesians 4:26-27

26 Be angry, and yet do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, 27 and do not give the devil an opportunity.

Monday Nights with Ann . . . #3 . . . The Red Sea Moment

8 Oct

creation swap monday nights with ann couch 8345_Couch_Pictures

Periodically over the next few weeks there will be blog posts entitled, “Monday Nights with Ann” – they will contain Scripture and an opportunity to interact with the Word of God. Each of the “Monday Nights with Ann” posts will include an audio recording that ties the Scripture together. I pray you’ll take a few minutes and listen in. Blessings to you Sweet Sister!

clickbelow

↓ The Red Sea Moment ↓

None of us wants a stagnant faith. We want to grow from the moment we accept Jesus Christ as our Savior until we walk into Glory and realize the reality of grace in its fullest measure. That’s going to be an eternal moment Sisters when in the twinkling of an eye we are raised imperishable, dressed in the fine white linen of the Bride of Christ and we take our first steps into the New Jerusalem. – You and I have to move on from the waters’ edge. We have to face the fear and know, in this Red Sea moment, that LOVE is bigger.

creation swap move on watersedge

We may have all manner of circumstance piled to the right and every fiery trial piled to the left but God will lead us through. Freedom is not easy but He will provide the dry ground and our feet will not slip because the spirit of God has not come so that we may simply survive –He has come so that we may thrive.

And what I need for you to know is that since the arrival of our great Messiah and our Savior Jesus Christ we no longer only walk between the water of despair on the right and the wall of destruction on the left – you and I place our beautiful feet smack dab on the top of every wave!

We abide in Him and we abound in thankfulness that in the Matchless Name of He who saves every snake and every scorpion is under our Luke 10:18-19 feet and we declare for all the heavenlies to hear that we are free and no harm will come to us! We fix our eyes on Jesus, look at the Red Sea and we step out in His Mighty Name!

He has crushed the head of our enemy with His holy heel and not one obstacle stands between us and the Father.  Jesus Christ has overcome them all so that you and I, those who believe in their hearts and confess with their mouths that Jesus is Lord, can not only approach the throne of grace with confidence – we are welcome to live there!

The boundary lines have fallen for us in pleasant places, indeed we have a beautiful inheritance! Changed from death to life!

Changed from hiding from our God to Hiding in our Savior!

How much more abundant can it get for those who were once slaves to sin than to now be welcome in the Holy of Holies? The very dwelling place of the Living God.  Does it overflow more than that? Girlfriend, that’s what we were made for, life in His Presence—His overflowing, to the full, abundant Presence.

He is a jealous God who will not share you with the enemy nor your own flesh. He has come to set the captives free and He will deliver you safely into Glory. Drop your chains – abide and abound – and follow Him with everything you are!

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