Trusting Your Boundaries

Zoe makes the cut again this week.

Last night as Zoe was roaming around in her courtyard, sniffing out invaders, she got close to the fence. Where the ground is not level, there is a large gap between the fence and ground. I watched as Zoe got closer and closer to the fence, stretching out her neck as if tempted to crawl under, but she only sniffed and came back to me. In the four years since we’ve lived here, she’s only snuck beneath the fence once, and that was because a neighbor was on the other side talking to us.

The more I thought about, the more I considered God’s boundaries for us and how they are there for our protection. Just like we have Zoe’s courtyard fenced to keep her in and bigger dogs out, God has given us bounds of protection. It’s not that He wants to keep us from having fun or trying to find out if the grass is really greener on the other side. He knows the dangers that lurk out there on the other side. His heart is always to protect His children.

I’ve tested the waters on the other side and nearly drown. I’ve stuck my head beneath the fence and got it lodged there util He came and wiggled me back inside. I’m done with that now. These days, I’m happy to explore all that God has for me here in His courtyard. Since there are so many adventures waiting for me in the Kingdom, the world has lost its appeal. I guess that comes with maturity. ūüôā And maybe with a stiff neck from getting stuck a time or two.

All this to say, trust God’s¬†boundaries and know that His motive is love.¬†No temptation out there is worth the danger you’ll face if you go poking your head under the fence.

Love and blessings to you,
Lisa

Under the Shadow

I have this sweet¬†puppy named Zoe. She’s my best little friend and my favorite child. Ask my kids and they’ll tell you. Other than being with me and eating, she lives to go outside. Since she’s a tiny girl, not even four and a half pounds, she can’t go out and play like other pups can. Hawks watch for her and wouldn’t hesitate to swoop down and try to carry her away. Honestly, I have no greater fear for her than that. It doesn’t help that she hops through the grass like a bunny. Of course the hawks think she is dinner rather than someone’s little girl.

She’s now eleven, and in those years I’ve learned that early mornings before 8:00 ¬†a.m. and after dinner seem to be the safest times. Rarely is there a hawk present. Still, I don’t take any chances or let my guard down where she’s concerned. While we walk, I stay near, most times right by her side. I know that if I’m close a predator can’t easily get to her.

One evening recently, she and I were walking together and I could see my shadow cast over her prissy little body. It brought God to mind and how when we walk near to Him we are safest from the Predator. Even a little distance away from Jesus allows room for the enemy to swoop in and dig his talons into us.

It’s too easy to think that a step away won’t cause harm. But it can. Allowing this bad attitude here and that sinful action there can cause great harm to us and to those we love in the long run. I know for me, walking closely with Jesus daily by spending time with Him in prayer and through His Word matters. Even a few days away leads my mind to wander. I’m intentional about staying by His side. When I do, even a little bit of a bad attitude is caught and quickly addressed.

As for Zoe, she hasn’t figured all this out. She wants to run and hop and sniff no matter how near or far I am. I have to be a good mom and watch the skies for danger. I have to make sure I stay near enough to grab her up if I see a hawk circling. God is the same with us. Even when we are oblivious of the danger overhead, He’s there to grab us up at the first sign of danger.

My charge to you: Stay near to Jesus. Remain in the shadow of His wings. Danger is always out there lurking, but our good Father is watching the skies.

Blessings to you and yours from Lisa and Zoe!

Zoe sleeping on her back porch, dreaming of playing outside. Sometimes her feet wiggle as if she’s hopping around her courtyard.

 

 

Mining for God

The longer I walk with Jesus, the more I realize how many un-mined treasures are still to be uncovered. Each year I discover something new about my Father. It may be an attribute of His that I “knew” about but one not yet experienced on a personal level. Until I actually experience something, it tends to remain in my mind rather than my heart. Encountering God in a fresh way and experiencing something new in a difficult¬†season causes what I know in my head to drop into my heart and become my actual possession.

As I’ve spoken to¬†women over the years, the one thing I’m most passionate about is for them to actually encounter Jesus on their own and stop taking others’ word for it. It burns like wildfire in my heart for struggling women to know the intimate relationship with Jesus that He’s led me to over this past decade. Still, too many settle for too little and never mine for treasure of their own.

I’ve recently come across a new speaker, a man who captures my absolute attention with his laid back, casual manner of communicating the truths of God’s Word. Before listening to his sermons, I did a little research on him – something I advise you to do before listening to any speaker. Know who’s teaching you. This wonderful man of God went home to be with Jesus in 1993, but he left a lasting legacy for believers through his online sermons.

I’ve only listened to a few¬†so far, but these are such needed messages. There are so many available, something like 1500, that I wasn’t sure where to begin. So I just started at the top of the page with the Attributes of God series. The first one is invaluable to so many Christians. Dr. Strauss¬†gives a concise and practical “how to” on reading your Bible. I read one article about him where the writer says, speaking of Dr. Richard Strauss, “He knows how to put the cookies on the bottom¬†shelf.” What a great description of this pastor’s style. He takes what others complicate and makes it easy to reach. I love his style.

The next in the series is about getting to know God, something that seemed impossible for me during my early years trying to walk out my faith. Dr. Strauss’s message simply communicates truths that it’s taken me years¬†to learn on my own. I hope you’ll listen. They are in text format as well, but if you walk or bike or garden, I strongly suggest you listen and absorb his sermons. I’ll add the link here.

Spiritual Gold 

As you see, the site is called spiritualgold.com, and aptly so. This fine man of God will help you mine in the areas that will most help you get to know God. If you check him out, I would love to hear your thoughts.

If it’s not this pastor who leads you toward truth, I hope you are continually striving to know your Creator better. Each day we¬†need to be spending time in the Word and in prayer. No matter how deep we dig, we are still a lifetime away from knowing the¬†depths of God the Father through our relationship with Jesus.

Blessings to you today. Go and mine for God!
Lisa