Do I compare myself? I was asked this question today and at 49 years old, I thought I had finally beat the comparison trap! Wrong!
Yes! I do! I am a clean freak, and I want my home perfect, but my home is here to serve me. I am not here to serve my home and striving to make it look perfect takes my time from possibly for God’s best for me. Not to mention I am trying to embrace my middle age spread because it does not seem to be going anywhere. But how come the other middle age ladies look so slim and put together? In short, nothing will be perfect on this side of Heaven, so my time shall be spent loving and serving well and resisting the comparison trap of the enemy.
Chen (grace) in Greek means favor-to bend and stoop in kindness. The God of the universe shows me this type of favor and love. His grace-He lavishly bestows upon me and you. So why are we so hard on ourselves? And goodness gracious why the comparison? I am truly asking myself.
Honestly, friends I have put off writing in this blog for several months because I cannot get it “perfect.” I cannot make it all say what my heart so vehemently feels. Well, no more. I will share my heart here for my Jesus. My motive is truly to honor Him. I pray in some small way you will blessed.
I want to choose to use my time well. I want my motives to be for God’s glory. I want the works He allows me to do on this side of glory to make it through the fire. No one but God knows my thoughts and motives. I pray they are a pleasing aroma to Him.
God is the only One who can take the pain that trickled down my face the last two days and make them a cascade of joy after meeting with Him early Saturday morning. Oh how I love Jesus! Thank You, Father, for you make it all -alright!
I have learned that Jesus is the only One who can satisfy every longing of my soul. No person can do this. No experience of this world can fulfill except being in the presence of God—the filling of His Holy Spirit. This is a peace that will never end. No thing in this world can ever satisfy. It always leads me to craving more.. BUT GOD can and will my portion be. He is my peace.
Mama went to be with Jesus a few hours later. She actually bled to death after being punctured internally during a routine medical procedure.
Now, when I tell you that Mama loved her some red lipstick, I mean, she loved red lipstick and wore it everyday. Honestly, I found it a bit odd. She was a homemaker, and we rarely went anywhere.
All my life Mama said, “Put on a little lipstick, and you will feel better.” I finally understand after 48 years of life on this earth and living 12 of those without her. She was actually right. Imagine that!!! My mother knowing more than me. HA HA!! The color red. It really symbolizes life-eternal life that my Savior paid for.
I was reminded of Mama’s lipstick one morning on a recent camping trip to the beach. I got up, put on my very red lipstick, the only kind Mama wore. and I did feel better for a little while, anyway. (It eventually wore off.) I put on my beach attire for the day including cover up, and took a leisurely walk-coffee in hand around the campground. People spoke. I stopped and chatted. I made it to the end of the campground where my friend was having coffee, and she burst out laughing. “Why do you have that lipstick on for the beach?”
“Cause my mama said it makes you feel better! And I do. I feel really good!”
Red- it was one of the colors God wanted in His sanctuary-His dwelling place among the people who lived in the Old Testament times. I studied the color red a little bit and found that the tiny creature, coccus illcis, is often used in textiles, especially in ancient Israel, where the creatures are prevalent, to achieve the deep red color that was used in the sanctuary fabrics.
I thank Jesus that we don’t need to go to a sanctuary to experience God now. He lives in those He has sealed with the Holy Spirit. His blood was shed so that we have access to the King of Kings at any time. That same power that rose Christ from the dead also abides in us, His children, when we accept Him as Lord and Savior of our lives.
Psalm 22 is sometimes called the Psalm of the Cross. It was written 1,000 years before Jesus’ cruxjfivtion. You will be blessed to read the whole Psalm. I have included portions in this post.
“For I am a worm and not a person. A disgrace to mankind and despised by people.
A little research taught me that the Hebrew word actually used here was “TOLA’ ATH.” This means crimson or scarlet worm. The same animal we know as coccus illus. He created all things and through Him all things hold together. His every word is: breath of life-so important.
According to an April 2014 article, “The Crimson or Scarlet Worm,” in Kid’s Think and Believe, Too.” The female worm gives birth one time in her life and then, dies. However, just before giving birth, she will attach herself to a tree trunk or another piece of wood permanently by creating a hard crimson shell. The eggs are laid and the babies are hatched under that hard, permanent, protectant shell. The mother begins the dying process and “oozes red dye” before she, herself, dies. During these three days her babies feed off of her and become stronger. After three days the mother loses the dye, turns white, and the dead carcass falls off the tree, “The red dye not only stains the wood she is attached to but also her young children” for the rest of their lives.
God is so good. He is intentional in everything He does and says. He is a God of order and not of chaos. He loves us so much that he bled out and died for you and me so that we can have lasting relationship with Him! Hallelujah!!!
Mama was right, too; ladies, a little lipstick can, indeed, help you feel a little better. I no longer have her here to hold my hand (or dress me in yellow and cut my bangs that way), but Jesus has covered me with His blood, and I am safe and free for all eternity.
I was raised in the Primitive Baptist Church. That may mean different things to different people, or it may not invoke any feelings in you. All of this is fine because it is the same Jesus who saves us all.
” For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
Romans 6:23 ESV
I thank God for pursuing me. My eyes were opened suddenly one day in the back of a hot auditorium when I was in 5th grade. The Gideons came to school! They gave me my little New Testament Bible, but more importantly they shared the Gospel with me. Yes, they shared the eye-opening Good News of Christ with me and my classmates that day. I am sure they prayed for us before they came. They probably had lots of things to do like gassing up their cars and packing boxes of Bibles. Y’all, it is in the little things that BIG things happen! I am also sure they had lots of other “stuff” they could have done that day….maybe…maybe not? IDK! I do not even know who the man was who spoke to my small group in the back of that auditorium. I am just thankful he was obedient that day!
The gentleman sparked my curiosity, and I wanted to know more, so I subscribed to the “club newsletter.” I don’t even remember the name of it. The literature came in the mail; I read it, and I accepted Christ in my bedroom that day. No, I don’t know the time and date. I know the place-my bedroom in the home I grew up in. I do remember the feeling I had after I asked Jesus to be my Lord and Savior that day. PEACE!! Complete peace!!I went out and rode my brown bicycle, and felt like I could literally fly ….I was so light. ……kind of like a feather. There are really no words to describe this peace. It is the same peace that I have today, and I thank God for it!
Nothing compares to the feeling of salvation. The peace that Jesus gives me is undescribable. Oh, How I LOVE JESUS. I am so thankful that He chose me. I pray, dear reader, that you have this same peace.
“I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have triublation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.”
You may wonder what all this has to do with how I was “brought up.” If the Lord wills, I will continue to share my journey with you on this page. God bless you all!