Posts Tagged ‘ life ’

What’s Your Personal Vision Statement?

Ever read a vision statement of a vision statement and just think to yourself, wow? Or even I can’t imagine how long it took them to come up with that!

Maybe even you’ve struggled with what you believe your purpose to be. The hardest part may not be what you believe your purpose to be, but how do I tell people about this purpose.

Does it have to look a certain way?
Does it need to be a certain length?
Does it really matter anyway?
My answer to each of these is the same, It is up to you!

You decide how it looks.
You decide how long it is.
You decide what matters most, and you make it count!

What I have now is not at all what I thought mine was for so long, but both are the same.

Originally: “To allow and facilitate breakthrough in the lives of the ordinary.”
Now: “Living by faith, learning through relationships, and loving God with all my heart, soul and strength through service.”

What’s yours?
I’d love to hear it!

Selah

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Just pray….Scripture

So often we have prayed for “favor…in the sight of God and man”, but I think if we were to actually quote the scripture correctly we wouldn’t pray that at all. Instead, we would pray “let love and faithfulness never leave you”. This verse is much more about our obedience to Him not what’s in it for us.

As Christians I feel most of our personal time in prayer is nothing more than selfish ambition. I believe that if we were to quote more scripture during times of prayer our motivations for faith would be deeply rooted. I believe that because our prayers have been selfish we are not seeing the fruit we expect and it’s somehow God’s fault. This couldn’t be further from the truth.

The verse in its entirety is this: Proverbs 3:3-4

“Let love and faithfulness never leave you; bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart.
Then you win favor and a good name in the sight of God and man.”

It’s much more clear that when we read and quote scripture accurately what the intentions of the verse are. The verse’s context will also speak volumes for its intent. Remember this: pray God’s word accurately and believe it is for our benefit.

Selah

Encounter

What is it that you think of when you read the word ‘Encounter’?
Is it positive? Spiritual? A memory?
For me I can’t help but think of the times where The Lord directed my footsteps. Similar to the verse David wrote in Psalm 119:133 “direct my footsteps according to your word; let no sin rule over me.” Here David is requesting The Lord direct his steps, for me it was that The Lord was already directing my steps because I didn’t know any better.

So my encounters early on and often were where He was controlling the outcome of the decisions being made. He encountered my path to make it what it what it was. Had I taken more control the outcome would have been drastically different.

There are two encounters we deal with daily. Physical and Spiritual

I hope you weren’t expecting some theological stance or some exegetical delivery right there! It’s just those two encounters, day in and day out.

What will matter most is how we respond to each of these and whether or not we initiated them. Did we go to God first before we stubbed our toe and yelled a cuss word or did God come to us to shut us up before it slipped out?

Choose your encounter and respond courageously!

Selah

Die to Live

I’m not fully alive
Until I’m fully dead,
I’m not fully dead
Until I leave it at the cross!

Christ has entrusted me with His name
May I understand that weight and live
like it.

Selah

Confused? Don’t be!

Don’t confuse passion for anger,
Nor joy for hype.
If you aren’t sure which it is,
Just ask the One they represent.

“For God has not given us a spirit if fear and timidity, but if power, love, and self discipline.” 2 Timothy 1:7

God’s Rescuing Power

When I was instructed to write a paper on a personal death experience there was no hesitation about who it would include. I have only experienced death twice and both occurred within a few short years of each other. These lives were lost to the number one killing disease in this country, the disease of cancer. These lives lost shaped my families lives more than any other singular event that happened previously. When I think of these lost souls, I remember their smiles. I remember their sweet countenance. These lives were lived extraordinarily simple, and by this I mean they were not extravagant spenders or boastful vacationers; they lived life great every day! These lives were of Fred Camp and of Lucille Camp. Here is the excerpt from the Atlanta Journal Constitution(AJC) the day following my grandfather’s passing:

Fred Walter Camp, Jr., age 78, of Covington, died Sunday, January 30, 2005. Funeral services will be held on Tuesday, February 1, 2005, at Ward’s Rockdale Chapel at 2:00 PM, with Rev. Ed Brumlow officiating. Interment will follow at Fairview Memorial Gardens in Stockbridge. Mr. Camp was a native of Fulton County and a proud US Navy Veteran, having served during WWII and the Korean Conflict. He is survived by: daughter, Cindy Francis, Covington; son, Fred C. and Vivian Camp, of Decatur; Grandchildren, Tony Camp, Robbie Rummle, Chris Francis, David Francis, John Francis; great-grandchildren, Adam Francis, Michael Rummle, Breanna Rummle; brothers, Donald Humphries, FL, Gary Humphries, AL; sister, Martha DeMent, MO, and several nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his wife, Lucille Camp

My objective to adding this write up from the AJC is to implore the sobering feelings that I felt on the very day of their passing. I was only able to locate my grandfather’s obituary online, but not my grandmother’s. My memory serves me best in this situation because I remember more of my grandfather’s life than I do of his passing, and I remember more of my grandmother’s passing than I do of her life.(emphasis my own) How could it turn out this way that I could remember more of one than the other? They were a vital part of my childhood, so much so that some of my fondest memories were times spent at their house on the weekends. For example, I will wake on an occasional Saturday and have a quick memory flash and see images of Nanny, that’s what we called her, making her homemade pancakes, bacon and savory scrambled eggs with just the right amount of cheese mixed in. If I try hard enough I can close my eyes and remember what it felt like to wake up on their sixties style couch that I slept on while I was there and smell this delicious breakfast that she was making. I wasn’t hurried or rush to go and do anything because they enjoyed having all of us there. That’s right; I was rarely at their house alone. One of my older brothers always wanted to be there too! Their house was what every kid wanted their grandparent’s house to be, that place to get away from mom and dad. My grandparents knew this and didn’t seem to mind one bit.

My granddad lived a full life! You can tell this by the very short excerpt of the obituary from the AJC. Having fought in both World War II and the Korean conflict PawPaw, my granddads nickname, knew how to work with his hands. PawPaw had a small car graveyard full of old Mercury and Plymouth cars that would never drive again. It was a blast growing up around a man that wanted you around. It didn’t matter if he asked you go grab a wrench and when you brought it up to him you ended up dropping it into the engine compartment because your hands were covered in grease from trying to find the one. Ya know the wrench that had the right numbers on it that matched what he called out for you to get, but when you grabbed one you weren’t really sure if it was right, so you would go back and switch sizes.  Yes, I was like any other kid who wanted to please their PawPaw by doing something right the first time only to end up dropping it into one of the hardest to reach places of the car. He chuckled and said “oh Son!”

When it happened to Nanny first, we were all devastated. It was the most tragic event our family had experienced to date. This is my mother’s mom we are talking about! My grandparents showed great relationship skills and a pure love that I wouldn’t see in anyone else if they were to leave. My grandparents never, and I mean that not once, argued in front of us kids. Their love for each other was the most genuine I had experienced. Remembering now how they loved each other then makes perfect sense why we all wanted to be over there, because they were able to effectively love us the same. The difference between my grandparents and my parents was that there always seemed to be a gap between my parents relationally. I describe them that way to show why when Nanny was diagnosed with cancer how close we all were to her. When Nanny started having to wear bonnets to hide from losing her hair it was the realest moment I think any of us had of the entire experience. Both my grandparents fought valiantly against the disease. They fought as best they could. Their fight against cancer was very much alike with minor differences. Nanny would relax more and take longer naps, whereas PawPaw would have to be told over and over to come inside and “quit worrying about them old cars” as my mom would say. My mom showed incredible strength during both of their fights against cancer.

My clearest memories of their experiences, outside of remembering them as people, are those moments spent in the hospice home. The moments of not knowing when or how anything else might happen while we were there, simply waiting it out. There is one pivotal moment for me out of all the moments we had as a family that is a direct result of my life today. This moment is having the opportunity to hold my grandmother’s hand when she took her last breath. There was an inward shift. This cancer of the lungs caused by smoking, that all of my family members were doing, is something that I would never, ever do! There was no public announcement that because of this disease and because of their fight against it that I have made this decision. It was personal to me! I didn’t have to talk myself into doing it, it just never seemed physically appealing to me from that moment on. There were multiple times where I had taken a smoke of a cigarette but it was never a habit. Today as it stands am the only one in my family that does not smoke(nieces and nephews are excluded for obvious reasons). This memory of their amazing lives and this inward shift have cultivated a life of continued freedom and pure example that God can and will rescue anyone. His presence was there in their passing and I am the example of that. It could very well be that Nanny’s will held on until I was able to get ahold of her hand and make that physical contact so that I could be this example to the other family members of God’s rescuing power. I believe that as the truth! 

Just for Now

Hello blogging world!

I have been unsure what my first blog post should consist of but now that I’m actually typing it out I feel it should involve how I have come to be where I am now. I am in love with Jesus. By allowing Him come into my life for real and not by just acting it out like I had always witnessed I now truly realize how real He really is. If it weren’t for His love through those that are constantly around me I would never have stayed connected to Him. I am eternally thankful for the ones in my life currently who are constantly checking in with me and “shaking my branches” as it were to develop Godly character and guide me. I have been through a lot of what this world labels normalcy and I do not stand for what this world stands for. The bible actually calls for me to be like an “alien” in the aspect that I do not look like, act like, talk like, nor even agree with the same things that this world says is okay. I am sold out to Jesus. There is not only a physical difference in the way I live my life looking back before Him, and now after Him, there is such a difference in the way I think about very specific situations. Not brainwashing, but an uncovering. Like the famous hymn “I was blind but now I see…” that is exactly it. I was blind to His truth and I succumbed myself to this world. No longer do I allow myself to be decieved to the works of the former ways. This shall be enough for now. Going to pray and prepare for tonights service. There will be lives touched for the Kingdom of Yeshuah!