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Where Is My Neighborhood?

Neighborhood
A few weeks ago, God impressed on me that I was not obeying His command to love my neighbor as He intended. I have been asking Him for clarification. Where is my neighborhood and who is my neighbor? Specifically, WHERE and WHO? Did I need to do something differently? I wasn’t feeling condemned by God. Rather, I felt joy that He was taking me into a deeper understanding what it means to be a Follower of Jesus Christ. Here’s some of what I have been processing…

Who IS my neighbor?

“…When the Holy Spirit has come upon you, you will receive power to testify about me with great effect, to the people in Jerusalem” [where they were residing…in their own back yard] “throughout Judea, in Samaria, and to the ends of the earth, about my death and resurrection.”

Acts 1:8 (TLB)

They simply did not understand. Things were not turning out as they thought or hoped for. What was Jesus talking about and what were they supposed to do now? And what does that verse have to do with my new “assignment” from God? (To love my neighbor) Wasn’t I already doing that? As a mentor life coach, I love encouraging friends and clients. I support ministries and I write blogs and books to encourage people to love God and have a relationship with Him. What was I missing? What specifically am I not understanding?

Now what? Their friend was gone

:12, 13 “…They were at the Mount of Olives, so now they walked the 1/2 mile back to Jerusalem and held a prayer meeting in the upstairs room of the house where they were staying. This prayer meeting went on for several days…about 120 people were present…”

They waited a long time

Acts 2:1 “Seven weeks had gone by since Jesus’ death and resurrection and the day of Pentecost had now arrived.”

What happened?

The Apostles were still in Jerusalem when the Holy Spirit descended on the group in that room. They had been waiting seven weeks. Confused. Their Best Friend had left them. And now, in that room, the Holy Spirit arrived. And…at last, they KNEW what Jesus had been trying to tell them. He HAD to leave them so that each of them could receive for themselves the POWER of the HOLY SPIRIT residing in them.

But now what?

The people from many nations ran to the house to see what was causing the commotion in that upper room. And the people from those other nations heard these people (the disciples and apostles) from Galilee speaking in their own language “…about the mighty miracles of God.” (v. 11 TLB)

The sentiment of that day was:

Can anything good come from Galilee? And yet, MUCH good was coming from those in the upper room who had prayed and waited for direction. For the Holy Spirit. And each person heard the message in their own native tongue.

(Peter speaking) :

:18, 19 “ Each of you must turn from sin, return to God, and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ or the forgiveness of your sins, then you also shall receive this gift, the Holy Spirit: For Christ promised Him to each of you who has been called by the Lord our God, and to your children, and even to distant lands.”

Where is my neighborhood?

So, what I am learning anew is my current “neighborhood” is the apartment building where I live.

My profession:

I am a writer…a published author. I write books, blog posts, and newsletters. That takes quiet, solitude, concentration, and setting myself aside to think and to study and to write. But, like most things, I had taken it too far. I was isolating and would get frustrated if my solitude was interrupted.

God changed my priorities

He lovingly convicted me that my immediate neighborhood is a blessing from God to me. Each is a gift. I am grateful for each of my neighbors. May I continually seek ways to encourage and bless each one.

I’m sure this is just the beginning of God changing my mindset. But this part so far has been a joy!

“…the direction of Divine living is a deliberate surrender of our own point of view in order to learn Jesus Christ’s point of view and seeing that men and women are nourished in the knowledge of Jesus. The only way that can be done is by being loyal to Jesus myself.”

Oswald Chambers

God Loves Aardvarks: And God Loves Me

"Thank you, God, that you love all the animals and bugs. You love funny looking aardvarks and you love me."

Thankfulness through the alphabet. That's what this fun book will teach the kids in your life.

God Loves Aardvarks and God Loves Me

Let's Connect!Until next time,
Awaiting His shout,
pam_signature-c49a6c

Christian Life Coach
Leading from Your Strengths Mentor
www.loavesandfishescoaching.com


Law vs Grace

Stairway

Two Husbands

I once heard a story that helped me understand the difference between OT law and NT grace. Here it is…

There once was a woman married to a harsh task master of a husband. He made her a long list of what he expected her to accomplish. She found it impossible to complete and always felt lacking and a bit frightened of his reaction. She never felt good enough. She daily felt like a failure. She had no relationship with him. And, she was very afraid of him.

One day, her husband died and she put the list away in a drawer and forgot all about it.

She later met another man. He was a wonderful, kind, thoughtful, soft-spoken, loving man. She married him. They had a wonderful relationship, based on mutual respect.

As she was cleaning out that old desk one day, she found the list and when she read it—much to her surprise—she was automatically doing all the things on the list for her current husband. Without even trying. It was so easy to bless and serve him.

Comparison

That was an illustration I heard many years ago to compare the inability to keep the Old Testament laws. Always attempting to please & appease God. It was never enough. There were so many rules!!!

THEN, along came Jesus, who became our sin and died in our place, opening the gates of Heaven to all who choose to believe and accept the marvelous gift of forgiveness God offers us through His Son, Jesus. He is wonderful! We no longer fear we are not good enough and we can choose to live in the joy and pleasure of His company NOW, under grace. The Lamb of God, Jesus the Christ, our Savior,

“God of unconquerable Love, each day you surround me with Your unfailing Love. Today, I am going to remember that!”

Mary Ann Radmacher

It’s a good thing to give thanks to the Lord for His boundless Love!

God Loves Aardvarks: And God Loves Me

"Thank you, God, that you love all the animals and bugs. You love funny looking aardvarks and you love me."

Thankfulness through the alphabet. That's what this fun book will teach the kids in your life.

God Loves Aardvarks and God Loves Me

Let's Connect!Until next time,
Awaiting His shout,
pam_signature-c49a6c

Christian Life Coach
Leading from Your Strengths Mentor
www.loavesandfishescoaching.com


What Do a Fleece And a Parking Space Have In Common?

Full Parkng Lot

Parking spaces

New Christians pray for parking spaces close to the door, and almost always, God gives it to them. Why?

Gideon’s Fleece

These new Christians, like Gideon in his new walk with God, are also asking for confirmation and needing ADDED confirmation through the “fleece test”. God patiently and kindly gave him affirmation, as He gives it to them.

Faith walk

“There are degrees of faith. At one stage of the Christian experience, we cannot believe unless we have some sign or great manifestation of feeling. Like Gideon, we feel our fleece; if wet, we are willing to trust God. This may be true faith, yet imperfect. It always looks for feeling or some token besides the Word of God.” – G. H. P. –From Streams in the Desert devotional, p. 229-230)

3 Phases of faith

  1. Believes when there are favorable conditions.
  2. Believes when there is the absence of feeling.
  3. Believes God and His Word when circumstances, emotions, appearances, people, human reason all urge to the contrary.

Back to the parking space analogy

A new Christian always gets the parking space near the door when she/he prays.

A mature Christian prays for a space near the door and God says, “NO, you need the exercise. I love you too much to grant your request.”

Which one are you?

God Loves Aardvarks: And God Loves Me

"Thank you, God, that you love all the animals and bugs. You love funny looking aardvarks and you love me."

Thankfulness through the alphabet. That's what this fun book will teach the kids in your life.

God Loves Aardvarks and God Loves Me

Let's Connect!Until next time,
Awaiting His shout,
pam_signature-c49a6c

Christian Life Coach
Leading from Your Strengths Mentor
www.loavesandfishescoaching.com


The Secret

Door into a Garden

I have been set aside these last few weeks. I thought I’d share with you a bit of what God has been impressing on me.

Elisabeth Elliot

“The secret is Christ in me, not me in a different set of circumstances.”

Change for change sake is not the answer. The secret is believing. Trusting that God means what He says. He is with us and within us always.

John Piper

”God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in Him.”

God created our hearts with a thirst that can only be satisfied in Him.

Psalm 63:1

“O God, Thou art my God. I shall seek Thee earnestly. My soul thirsts for Thee. My flesh yearns for Thee, in a dry and weary land where there is no water.”

The Psalmist reminds us that our entire being literally longs for God and no matter what else we seek to fill that void, that God-sized vacuum in each of us can only be satisfied when He is truly our first love. When we earnestly seek Him above all others.

Hudson Taylor describes “The Secret”

“It is the exchanged life…. No longer I…” No thought of imitating Christ. Rather, “It was in the blessed reality: ‘Christ liveth in me’…

“No longer bondage, but liberty. Instead of failure, quiet victories within; instead of fear and weakness, a restful sense of sufficiency in ANOTHER.

Encouragement

I Thessalonians 5:24

“Faithful is He who calls you and He also will bring it to pass.” He promises! He keeps His promises.

1 Thessalonians 5:28

”The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with you.”

Until next time…

God Loves Aardvarks: And God Loves Me

"Thank you, God, that you love all the animals and bugs. You love funny looking aardvarks and you love me."

Thankfulness through the alphabet. That's what this fun book will teach the kids in your life.

God Loves Aardvarks and God Loves Me

Let's Connect!Until next time,
Awaiting His shout,
pam_signature-c49a6c

Christian Life Coach
Leading from Your Strengths Mentor
www.loavesandfishescoaching.com


Wedding Plans and Alpha Moms. Finding Joy in the Journey.

Wedding party tug of war

Most couples have expectations that after the engagement, there comes the blissful and effortless planning of a wedding celebration. However, sometimes, one or more Alpha Moms vie against the Alpha Bride for the power to plan.

Let’s be fair. Seldom does the Alpha person see the relational fractures they are causing. What could be some of the possible reasons this is happening?

Alpha Manifestations

  1. The money rules. Whoever pays the most thinks (and rightly so) that they should have a greater input … but unfortunately that often translates into the “Right to Rule” all things attitude.
  2. Power struggles. “Where, what, who, when” decisions become nightmares as formerly sane people try to be heard. It appears that they feel that their way is the only reasonable (translated: correct) decision.
  3. Focus on tasks/decisions. It is easy to forget to be kind when so many tasks and decisions are piling up.
  4. Past experiences. Perhaps their own Mom was a Wedding Alpha Mom and they don’t know there is another option.

Is there an alternative? Is this all inevitable? Does the best Alpha win?

Advantages in the Christian Wedding

We can choose to keep God in the center…to pray first, pray during, and pray after each decision, each meeting, and each event.

  1. The wisdom of the Word of God is the Rock to stand on. Reading the New Testament book of Philippians is a good place to start each day. It helps to keep our focus on the Joy in the Lord…to keep our thoughts of Him front and center.
  2. It helps to keep reminding ourselves that God is on our side. He wants us to ask for His help. He desires the wedding plans to be as blissful as the joy of the engagement was. Jesus’ first recorded miracle was at a wedding feast with his mother. He understands.
  3. A priority must be in keeping our guard up against the evil one that desires to destroy the good testimony that can come from a Christian wedding done well.
  4. We can choose to have an “accountability partner” to help us keep focused on what is eternal.

It is also important to remember that just because we are Christians, we are not immune to the temptations brought on by wanting everything to be just right. With all the busyness, it is easy to forget we are sinners needing God’s mercy, guidance, wisdom, and grace.

In Luke 18:9-14

The Alpha church leader – the one that knew and taught the Scripture – the one that spent most of his days in a religious lifestyle (and should have known better) tried to convince God of his “Alpha-ness” (translated: worthiness).

In the story, we also see the contrast of the lowly, despised man – feeling his sinfulness (translated: UNworthiness). He is begging God for mercy.

The question is

In any of life’s circumstances – do we want to be the Alpha person or the one asking for the Lord’s mercy and guidance…and receiving it because God sees our heart. Being an Alpha person is a hard habit to break. But the first step is awareness that it’s not worth the ultimate price of being out of God’s favor.

Perspective

It helps to keep the perspective that it is truly only one day. Future relationships can be strained when we insist that the Alpha way is the right way…controlling things with either attitude, tears, or outbursts of anger. Whether you are the bride, the groom, the mother, the father, a relative, or friend, it simply is not worth it in the long run. How much better to seek to be a blessing in the planning of a wedding.

Decisions

Yes, decisions have to be made and deadlines have to be met. And yielding is difficult, but done with eyes wide open and on the Lord, it can be the difference between being a Kingdom Person rather than a Church Person. Our ways are earthly. His ways are Heavenly.

Luke 18:14 “I tell you that this man {the UNworthy one…the one who knew that he was a sinner}, rather than the other, went home justified before God. For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled; and he who humbles himself will be exalted.”

For His glory!

If you are now or soon to be involved in the planning of a wedding, I pray for God to bless your wedding plans, your wedding, and all the rest of your days on earth. I’d love to help you through the process. Let’s talk…

My Father: Experiencing God's Love A-Z

Pamela Taylor invites you to join her in this interactive acrostic devotional journal designed to draw you into the extremely personal and abundant love God has waiting for you. Experience the "Just ask..." of His love for you!

My Father: Experiencing God's Love from A-Z by Pamela A. Taylor

Let's Connect!Until next time,
Awaiting His shout,
pam_signature-c49a6c

Christian Life Coach
Leading from Your Strengths Mentor
www.loavesandfishescoaching.com


The Rewards of Training Faithfully

Run Your Race

“In a race everyone runs, but only one person gets first prize. So run your race to win.” ~ 1 Corinthians 9:24 TLB

Marathon-ers are a dedicated bunch

They train faithfully, in all kinds of weather—always with that focused attention to detail that produces winners. Some hire coaches to help them train, stay focused on the goal, and endure to the end. Coaches are encouragers, but sometimes they are tough and tell you what you don’t want to hear, in order to help you be the best you can be, because they believe in your potential.

Marathon running

It can be grueling before, during, and after the event. One friend actually lost a toe as a result of being determined to finish the race. She persevered in spite of the pain. Maybe even because of it. She had worked so hard to get to this point. She simply could not give up! Would not give up!

Water stations

The water stations along the way are an oasis. Along with the refreshment of the water, they are also a place to receive encouragement to persevere from friends, family, and your coach. People cheer the runners on at these refreshment stations. It is critical to be reminded of the goal to finish.

Related Post: Marathon Running

Run Your Race

Isaiah 40:29-31

“He gives power to the weak, and to those who have no might, He increases strength…But those who wait on the LORD shall renew their strength…
They shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint.”

Time on this earth

As followers of Christ being “earth-bound” can seem like training for a marathon. It is critical to keep focused toward the goal. Like running coaches for the marathon runner, Christian Life Coaches help Christ-followers to hold their focus toward their goals: “Forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead…the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 3:14). Paul also said in that same verse: “…but one thing I do…”

Is that the one thing we do?

Do we earth-bound humans press on with our eye toward the goal of spending eternity with Jesus? Is that our joy and focus? Do we love Him enough to go through what is sometimes the loneliness that accompanies grueling training before, during, and after the event of “going home to be with the Lord”? Are we willing to lose a toe—or worse—in the process? Or are we distracted toward the worldly prizes more than the heavenly ONE? Do we try to take shortcuts because the training is so hard?!

Are You Running Your Race?

Today is a new day!

Let’s keep cheering one another on. This is a great day for a fresh start with a fresh perspective. Which marathon are YOU running? And which prize do you most value?

I’d love to hear from you.

Have you done any marathon running? How have you found it to compare to the walk of a disciple of Christ? Would you like a coach to cheer you on and help you stay focused?

My Father: Experiencing God's Love A-Z

Pamela Taylor invites you to join her in this interactive acrostic devotional journal designed to draw you into the extremely personal and abundant love God has waiting for you. Experience the "Just ask..." of His love for you!

My Father: Experiencing God's Love from A-Z by Pamela A. Taylor

Let's Connect!Until next time,
Awaiting His shout,
pam_signature-c49a6c

Christian Life Coach
Leading from Your Strengths Mentor
www.loavesandfishescoaching.com


God Loves “Face Time” With You

Boy talking on phone
Yesterday, I consulted with my homeopath, using social media “Face time.” She wants to do “Face time” so she can see me. To see my demeanor; to watch my reactions, etc. All that is part of the process toward healing. We routinely meet every couple months or so on social media. I explain all my concerns and she records them in my file, and then prescribes a remedy. It is a liquid that she mixes up for me and I take it regularly, 3 times per week. Every person is different. A homeopath has to be attentive to details and the uniqueness of each client.

Similarities

This morning, I saw a correlation to our devotions…our set-aside-times with our attentive-to-details God. Just think, if a homeopath has regular times to help clients stay healthy, then certainly, we need regular times with God—talking as He is listening and asking questions to make us think deeper. To get to the root of the malady. However, meeting with God only every couple of months, would not be very good for relationship building. And reading the Scriptures and praying (the remedy) only 3 times a week, would not be adequate to maintain a spirit-filled life. So, the comparison is a bit lame, but still can be helpful if it makes us think about God more deeply, causing us to want even more time with Him.

God is a good listener

God wants more face time with each of us. He never tires of hearing from us. He loves seeing our face lifted up to Him in adoration, or in pleading for help. WHATEVER we say or do, He is like a doting parent wanting to be a part of all that matters to us. Whatever concerns you, concerns your God. He desires a very personal and intimate relationship. Hold nothing back. He knows it all, anyway. He will help you sort it all out if you trust Him. THAT is a big “if”…IF you will trust Him…

“Trust in Him at all times, you people; Pour out your heart before Him, God is a refuge for us. Selah.”

Psalm 62: 8 (NKJV)

Undistracted devotion

But God is also a jealous God. He wants our affections to be towards Him and not towards other gods of our own making. He wants to be our FIRST LOVE and our deepest love.

“Delight yourself in the LORD,…”

Psalm 37:4a (NKJV)

Undistracted time

Our Father wants us to give Him focused time. Multi-tasking does NOT impress the Creator God. When we stray, He kinda grabs us by the scruff of our neck, (through circumstances) to get our attention back on Him and on what really matters.

Focus

“You can’t focus on everything. We must focus on the things that matter most.”

“Slow down a little, and let God get into your world.”…

— Dutch Sheets

Priorities

Life can be hard and we continually have needs. I’m thinking of friends that are going through some trying times lately.

  • One friend has suffered from debilitating headaches for almost 4 years. Finally, this week, she found a specialist that had the solution.
  • Another friend has had multiple challenges. First bright lights in her eye, then her heart acted up, and then when she was outside soaking up vitamin D in a lawn chair in her yard, the chair collapsed and she hit her tail bone! She is in pain. She is still seeking solutions.
  • Another friend tripped on a step, and hit her head and split her lip, and banged up her knee. She was at her son’s home where she could get immediate help for her banged up body. She is better today.
  • Another friend spent last week in Hospice with her dear Father. She was at the hospital when he passed into eternity. And her daughter gets married this weekend. AND she needs to find a dress. This week will be full of lots of conflicting emotions. She knows God is with her through it all.

Stuff happens…

And it is horrible going through it; and it either makes us bitter or better. If you are like my friends, these trials have made them better and yours will for you too, if each of us allows our hard times to cause us to stop long enough to choose to spend more “face” time with our FATHER GOD, the fixer-upper, the Comforter, the Healer, the really good listener. It all pulls us back to our Anchor, the Lord; and we are reminded AGAIN that time with Him brings peace, joy, healing, comfort and anything else we need. He promises to meet our daily needs…(NOT our daily wants )

“God has spoken once, Twice I have heard this: That power belongs to God. Also to You, O Lord, belongs mercy;…”

Psalm 61: 11, 12a

Will you join me to pray this prayer?

Father God, thank You for sending Jesus, so that I can have a personal relationship with You, through the power of the Holy Spirit. Thank You for daily reminding me to make the time with You as the first priority of my day before I go out into the world. Give me Your wisdom to obey Your promptings as I go throughout my day. May I bring You joy as I seek more and more “Face” time with you each day.

“Because Your loving-kindness is better than life, my lips shall praise You. Thus I will bless You while I live; I will lift up my hands in Your name. My soul will be satisfied…my mouth will praise You with joyful lips.”

— Psalm 63:3-4 (NKJV)

Maranatha! Come, Lord Jesus!

My Father: Experiencing God's Love A-Z

Pamela Taylor invites you to join her in this interactive acrostic devotional journal designed to draw you into the extremely personal and abundant love God has waiting for you. Experience the "Just ask..." of His love for you!

My Father: Experiencing God's Love from A-Z by Pamela A. Taylor

Let's Connect!Until next time,
Awaiting His shout,
pam_signature-c49a6c

Christian Life Coach
Leading from Your Strengths Mentor
www.loavesandfishescoaching.com


Worry

Little Girl in Airplane

Children worry

There’s a story I heard over the weekend, about orphan children. Harmed by poverty, they often had trouble sleeping at night, even when they went to bed with a full stomach. It seems they couldn’t sleep because they were worried they wouldn’t have food tomorrow . They were inconsolable. Words of reassurance were not enough. Then someone had an idea to give them a chunk of bread to hold in their hand as they slept. But they were told they could not eat it until tomorrow. Amazingly, they slept soundly.

My daughter was worried

It reminded me of a time when my daughter had trouble sleeping at night. After some conversations, I realized she was afraid she would go hungry. If I remember correctly, it was around the time of the year 2000 scare. So much was said about running out of everything because our world runs on computer systems now. The Lord gave me the idea to give her a box of protein bars to keep under her pillow and a can of soda to keep on her nightstand. Remarkably, she was able to relax and sleep, knowing she had provision right at her fingertips, if she ever needed it. Just like the little orphans in the story in the paragraph above.

Passengers on a plane in a storm were worried

The passengers were told to put on their seat belts. Turbulence was expected. It got pretty wild in the plane. People were scared. The were worried the plane would break apart or crash. Everyone, except for one little girl, sitting quietly and calmly coloring in her coloring book. Odd. Why wasn’t she afraid? Then, someone asked her why. Her response: “My Daddy is the pilot. And he is taking me home.” (A little child shall lead them. )

These are times that try men’s souls

Like the year 2000, we live in a turbulent time. Many things tempt us to worry. Will God really take care of us? We are so used to our conveniences and being the masters of our own fate, we have forgotten that God promises to provide our daily bread. Just ask! Jesus meant it when He taught us in what we call the Lord’s Prayer. As God’s children, we are to have no worries. And we are to be grateful for what He provides. Not grumbly like the Israelites when the were “stuck” with “manna” they had to gather daily (except for the Sabbath eve day, when they could gather for two days). They worried they would never have tasty food again.

Worry is about the FUTURE

Worry is concern over the unknown and uncertain future. Worry comes from a divided mind. Scripture tells us that a double-minded person is unstable in all their ways. It is true that we should plan when we can. And we should have concerns about the uncertainties. But each day has enough trouble of its own, and worry is about TOMORROW. We can plan for tomorrow, but any number of things could happen to mess up our plans. And so, we can’t really do anything certain about tomorrow, until tomorrow becomes today. Worry can actually destroy a person, often robbing them of their joy and causing a focus on lack instead of possibilities.

Concern is about the PRESENT

David Jeremiah says: Worry sees problems. Concern solves problems. Worry is the future. Concern is the present. He says when you worry, you act like a pagan. Like you don’t know God. Like you don’t have a Father. Like you are an orphan. Each day has its own need and its own provision. Mark Twain said, “I’ve had many worries in my life, most of which never happened.” Does that sound like you?

Let’s pray:

Jesus, I confess my sin of unbelief. Lord, I am yours. My family is yours. I am not an orphan. With Your help, I will stop acting like one. You are my Father. I trust You are my pilot and You will capably fly the plane of my life; and when the time comes, You will take me HOME.

My Father: Experiencing God's Love A-Z

Pamela Taylor invites you to join her in this interactive acrostic devotional journal designed to draw you into the extremely personal and abundant love God has waiting for you. Experience the "Just ask..." of His love for you!

My Father: Experiencing God's Love from A-Z by Pamela A. Taylor

Let's Connect!Until next time,
Awaiting His shout,
pam_signature-c49a6c

Christian Life Coach
Leading from Your Strengths Mentor
www.loavesandfishescoaching.com

Filed under: Christian Life Coaching,Spiritual Life — Tags: , , — Pam Taylor @ 7:00 am

The Smell of a Fresh Rain

Woman under umbrella

“Satisfy us in the morning with your unfailing love, that we may sing for joy and be glad all our days.”

Psalm 90:14

Early Morning

It was early morning. I was outside and it had just begun to rain.

The sweetness and beauty.

Is there anything sweeter than the smell of fresh rain in the air? Or more beautiful than the sound it makes as it hits the pavement? Or more fun than watching it joyfully patter onto the earth and bounce back up with a type of joy?

I wonder…

I wonder if that’s what God’s breath smells like? Like the rain…as He “breathes fresh life” into His creation? I love that thought!

The Creator of the rain…

Could those drops also be His tears of joy…happy that I had stopped for a few minutes and “connected” with Him…The Creator of the rain?

Do you feel like you don’t have that kind of time to stop like that?

Well, you are wrong! 😉 It simply takes a mindset shift. That’s all. AND…I can help you with that. I can help you renew your childlike “wonder”… Let’s connect soon. Don’t put it off…Just click on the blue button to leave me a message.

My Father: Experiencing God's Love A-Z

Pamela Taylor invites you to join her in this interactive acrostic devotional journal designed to draw you into the extremely personal and abundant love God has waiting for you. Experience the "Just ask..." of His love for you!

My Father: Experiencing God's Love from A-Z by Pamela A. Taylor

Let's Connect!Until next time,
Awaiting His shout,
pam_signature-c49a6c

Christian Life Coach
Leading from Your Strengths Mentor
www.loavesandfishescoaching.com

Filed under: Christian Life Coaching,Spiritual Life — Tags: , , — Pam Taylor @ 7:00 am

Who Needs a Baby?

Baby

Progressive ideals

When I married, I held tightly to the progressive ideas of my Baby Boomer generation. One of those ideas was that society was so evil and corrupt, I couldn’t stand bringing a child into the world.

The Vietnam War had become ugly. I didn’t want my child to grow up and have to fight in such wars. Racial riots flourished. What kind of person would bring a child into such an environment? My arguments sounded so noble.

Children are expensive and messy

“Besides,” I thought, “children are expensive—and time-consuming. They drool and mess their pants. Their noses are always runny, and they throw food at the table. They cry, too, and whine.” I had never baby-sat, because small children seemed so helpless and messy, ungrateful and self-centered.

Baby showers

I especially hated baby showers, but because I had a lot of friends, I was invited to many. Nothing could have irritated me more.

One day, a baby shower, of all things, started a huge turnaround that would challenge my self-centered ideas and change my life. I was sitting inconspicuously in a group of gushing, sentimental women and becoming more disgusted by the moment. I glared, thinking, “This is ridiculous! I don’t need a baby to prove my worth as a person!”

What is going on?

During refreshments, the veteran mothers compared horror stories of their birth experiences. The mother-to-be got more pale with every story. I thought, “Who wants kids? I’m glad I’m smart enough to avoid such foolishness!”

Looking around, I saw how many women had brought their babies along to the shower. Then it happened. Someone handed me her baby to hold while she went to the restroom. I had no time to protest. The baby looked at me straight in the eyes, cooed, and smiled.

Oh no, what is happening? I felt a strange stirring in my stomach. I couldn’t breathe. “What is going on, Lord? I can’t be attracted to this child.”

That was the beginning.

It seemed as though everywhere I went, people asked me to hold their babies. Each time, I could hardly wait to hand the baby back to its owner. I began to develop a reputation for being a baby hater.

Yet, I began to realize I longed for my own child. That was a surprising revelation.

Prayer. Barrenness hurts. Fasting.

One evening I knelt at the foot of my bed and read about Hannah’s plight in I Samuel 1. I was beginning to relate to the pain of barrenness. Nobody knew about the new stirrings that softened my heart, so people teased me just as Peninnah had teased Hannah. It hurt.

That night before God, I committed myself to fast and pray for my own child. “Lord, I promise to rear the child to honor You. I’ll give it back to You if You will just bless me this way,” I vowed.

In the midst of that fast, the Lord impressed upon me my need to yield my personal rights to Him. I prayed, “It’s okay, God, if I never have children. I want what you want.”

I finally felt peace.

Amazingly, my spirit felt as though God said, “Finally!” I felt peace for probably the first time in my twelve years of marriage. I had surrendered my will to Him.

Children are expensive and time consuming!

That very day I conceived my first of two children. Sure enough, my beliefs turned out to be true. Children are expensive and time-consuming. They drool and mess their pants. They sometimes have runny noses and play with their food. They cry and whine, but so what? They were my babies, and it somehow didn’t matter.

A secret.

My friends had a baby shower for me and for my first child, Rebecca. I remember the day she looked me straight in the eyes, cooed, and smiled—as though she knew a secret. Somehow I felt that Rebecca and God had been in alliance, all along knowing what I really needed and wanted.

To God be the Glory! He knows what is best for each of us!

—First published in Women Alive! July/August 1998

My Father: Experiencing God's Love A-Z

Pamela Taylor invites you to join her in this interactive acrostic devotional journal designed to draw you into the extremely personal and abundant love God has waiting for you. Experience the "Just ask..." of His love for you!

My Father: Experiencing God's Love from A-Z by Pamela A. Taylor

Let's Connect!Until next time,
Awaiting His shout,
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Christian Life Coach
Leading from Your Strengths Mentor
www.loavesandfishescoaching.com

Filed under: Christian Life Coaching,Spiritual Life — Tags: , , , — Pam Taylor @ 7:00 am

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