Transformation Begins by Beholding God

2 Cor 3:18- But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.

During the month of July, my church along with other churches in the Peoria area have partnered together to do an event called, “Behold Him,” ( where we pretty much do as is said – Behold Jesus simply by spending time with Him.  So I have been meditating more on the concept of beholding Jesus and its incredible importance.

Many people desire to for personal transformation.  We all have a sin nature and are broken people in need of God – that’s why we need Jesus to transform us and change us. Transformation means literally to be changed into another form.

This verse reveals what is needed in order to experience personal transformation. First, we must behold God’s glory with an unveiled face. So what exactly is an unveiled face? This speaks of openness and vulnerability. That is why it is so important to have a heart that is fully transparent before God – tell Him what you really think and really feel. He already knows the deepest parts of your heart. This is how intimacy with God is established – by being totally real with Him. Intimacy = In to me see.

Next, what is the term “beholding” really mean and how does it apply to transformation? It means reflecting and contemplating. It means to really go deep and study into God’s glory. It means spending long portions of time with Jesus through prayer, mediation, silence and reading the Word. This is how we are truly transformed. I know I have seen this even in my own life. As I have committed to spending regular with Jesus, I have seen my own life change – my attitudes, my belief system, the grace to forgive when wronged, my expectations of people, my understanding of how temporal this life is and the magnitude of what is to come, my faith and love for the Lord and others, and the list goes on. It’s all because Jesus loves to transform those who make time for Him and allow Him access to the inner thoughts and motives of the heart.

Lastly, what is the glory of the Lord and how do we behold it if we aren’t the four living creatures or the twenty-four elders. Clearly, they are before the throne of God, continually beholding His magnificent glory. How can we do this here and now? Well, when Moses cried out to God in Exodus 33:18, “Please, show me Your glory,” the Lord responded in verse 19, “I will make all My goodness pass before you, and I will proclaim the name of the Lord before you. I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion.” The glory of the Lord and His nature (His goodness, graciousness and compassion) are interchangeable. This is why it is crucial that we spend time beholding and searching out God’s nature – Who He really is. We must ask God to reveal an intimate knowledge of Himself to us. He will reveal His magnificent nature and His unfathomable love and compassion to us when we set our hearts on beholding Him. Transformation will take place when He becomes preeminent in our hearts and lives. My final exhortation to you – let’s seek to simply stop what we are doing and spend time with the uncreated God. We truly will be changed from glory to glory as we behold Him and as we set our hearts on understanding His nature.

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The Calling of a Mother

I wrote this over 2 years ago, but thought it would be fitting to share since it is Mother’s Day! Happy Mother’s Day to all you mothers out there! Your service in loving and raising your kids blesses the heart of God and your reward will be great!

I was just sitting in my rocking chair holding my precious son, Caleb, crying over him. I find that I have some of the most powerful encounters and words from the Lord just holding Caleb in my arms, admiring him. The Lord has made him in such a way where he loves to be loved and held. Therefore I have plenty of time throughout the day and night in silence just holding my little one.

I was just expressing my thoughts to Jesus, saying in my heart how even more than I desire to heal the sick, raise the dead, prophesy with power, and have an anointed message to preach, I desire to simply be a mom who learns to love. I truly felt God’s delight over me as I was pouring out my heart. I don’t think I’ve ever expressed that to Him before. In my mind, I’ve never really esteemed the calling of a mother. I’ve more or less thought that the calling of a revivalist or mighty preacher of the Word to be greater than a calling of a mother… until this moment when the Lord spoke to my spirit, “The calling of a mother is a high and noble calling.” I felt Him emphasize “noble” to me. I felt the weightiness of what He spoke and knew He was sincere in His statement to me. The witness of His words in my spirit caused me to actually believe what He said to be true.

At the end of my life, I want to stand before the King of Kings, the Father of Glory and Majesty, the loving Son of God, and I want Him to say of me, “Well done good and faithful servant, you have learned to love.” Oh I yearn to be a woman who loves! I yearn to love like Jesus loves me! For real, His love is so unfathomable and uncontainable and beyond anything you or I can ever imagine with our human minds. I am struck by the waves of His unconditional love for me even as I am typing this. His love is so intense and overwhelming. Oh I yearn to know this Man of passionate love! I’m so blessed to be a mother who serves a God who loves so extravagantly and who helps me love in return!


One Thing is Needed

Life is busy. Raising kids, cooking, cleaning, laundry, work, ministry… and the list goes on and on. Yes, there are a million things I could be doing right now. But Jesus clearly says “one thing is needed.” What is that one thing needed? Well, let’s look what Jesus says.

Luke 10:38-42 – Now it happened as they went that He entered a certain village; and a certain woman named Martha welcomed Him into her house. And she had a sister called Mary, who also sat at Jesus’ feet and heard His word. But Martha was distracted with much serving, and she approached Him and said, “Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Therefore tell her to help me.”  And Jesus answered and said to her, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things. But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her.”

That one thing Jesus is referring to in this passage is simply being with Him—that which Mary chose. Choosing this one thing speaks of personal prayer, reading the Bible, listening to His voice and just spending time alone with Him daily. Does this passage of Scripture truly govern the way we think and live? One thing is needed – and that one thing is being with the God Man, Christ Jesus! It is spending time with the One who has the power to save our wretched soul from the lake of fire, who speaks and the lame walk and the dead rise, who deeply loves us above anything we can comprehend. One thing is needed – it is hearing the voice of Jesus, what He is saying to us, what He speaks through the mighty Word of God to our hearts. Do we make time to dial down and sit before the glorious throne that we have access to?

I am struck by what Billy Graham said in an interview with Fox News . The interviewer asks, “If you were to do things over again, would you do it differently?” Without a hesitation, Billy responds, “Yes, I would study more; I would pray more, travel less, take less speaking engagements… and if I would have to do over again, I would spend more time in meditation and prayer and just telling the Lord how much I love Him and adore Him and looking forward to the time we are going to spend together for eternity.”

I want to spend more time with the One who I am going to spend eternity with – Yes, it is important to keep your house clean and to do practical things in life. But we must spend time with the One who has created our very being, who loves us and who we are going to spend forever with. He so yearns for lovers who are after His heart – those who love to spend time with Him, above all other things. He wants to be preeminent in our hearts and lives.

Lord, help me make time for You daily even in the craziness of life. I yearn to be a woman who encounters You in the secret place. Come meet with me and make me like Mary who sat at Your feet and heard Your word. Amen.

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Jewelery Holder

So this is my latest creation which was inspired by Pinterest. I purchased three canvases with pictures of weird birds from the dollar store and then covered them with fabric. And my wonderful husband put the hooks in for me… and voila! 🙂 Now my necklaces don’t get all tangled up in my jewelry box, and they are more easily accessible for use. The only thing that keeps me from wearing necklaces now is having an 11 month old who likes to grab and yank… hoping he gets through this phase quickly. 🙂

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The Importance of Including Kids

One thing that I have purposed in my heart to start doing more is including my kids in everyday tasks that I do around the house. My tendency, as I know is the same for many parents, is to let their kids do their own thing, because they can get in the way as well as slow us down from getting things clean and taken care of around the house. While I believe it is important to teach our kids to play independently and to entertain themselves, I believe it is even more important to include them and cultivate in them a love for helping out. And yes, they will slow us down and distract us, but I’ve noticed a couple things change as I have changed my approach to parenting them.

First, our home has so much more joy and peace in it. My kids are happy, because I am involving them more and spending more one on one time with them, and I am happy because their happiness affects my mood, and I enjoy bringing them joy. I’ve noticed, especially in Caleb that his sense of self worth has increased. He is so proud of himself when he is able to help me set the table, dusk a shelf, unpack the dishwasher or whisk eggs, which is his new favorite thing to do. Not that I didn’t let him do any of these exciting things before. I am just including him more in being my little helper. He is also learning simple tasks, which will benefit me more in the future when he can do things more independently. Since he is only two and a half, he needs much guidance and assistance.

I am also including them in my time with Jesus. While I believe it is very important to spend time alone with the Lord, I believe it is also important for children to be taught to pray by watching and listening to their parents or others pray. We’ve been spending a half an hour of prayer together in the morning right after breakfast. It helps me focus my attention on Jesus early in the morning and dedicate the day to Him, and is especially needed when I don’t wake up before my kids to have my own quiet time. They normally play as I pace around my dining room table. Caleb will occasionally join in by repeating the names of the people I say or by saying the occasional “Jesus” and “Yes Lord,” and then he sometimes says his own prayer in his own way which is so precious.

The more I think about this concept of including my kids, I can’t help but think about how Jesus has included me into His plan. God didn’t have to create the earth and humans to inhabit it, but He desired to have relationship with the ones He formed even from the beginning of time. Revelation 4:11- … “for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created” (KJV). He could have created cosmic marshmallows and just kicked them around for all of eternity (my husband’s great insight on this matter). God thought up the idea of prayer, because He yearns for a deeper relationship with us. When we pray, we are actually talking to God, and God then answers our prayers when we ask in relation to His will. The Bible is written by God to us so we can know what is in His heart and get to know Him just like I desire my husband and kids to understand my heart. Best of all, He desires to be with us and include us in His plan for all eternity – that is why He sent Jesus! So, I encourage you to seek ways of including your kids throughout the day and to seek ways of including God in your life as well.

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My Journey with Jesus Thus Far

I thought it would be fitting for my first blog post to be about my personal journey with Jesus. This is my testimony in a nutshell – “For great is Your mercy toward me, and You have delivered my soul from the depths of Sheol” (Psalm 86:13).

Growing up, I attended church regularly and believed that Jesus was real. However, I really didn’t understand that I was a sinner, in need of God’s mercy and forgiveness in my life until the summer between my sixth and seventh grade year at a church camp I attended. It was then that I decided to pray to receive Jesus Christ as my personal Savior and ask Him to truly forgive me of my sin. But, even though I called myself a Christian, I did not truly live like one during my high school years. I wanted to please others rather than God and did not possess a true love for Him. I considered the Bible a good moral piece of literature for people to read if they wanted to pass time, and I thought prayer was boring and mundane. I considered myself a good person. I realize now, though, that nobody is good except for One, and His name is Jesus, “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).

When I was a freshman at Illinois Central College, I became serious about Jesus and decided to truly make Him Lord in every area of my life. There were certain areas of my life that I still needed to surrender to Jesus. I was spurred on and challenged by a Christian organization, Chi Alpha Christian Fellowship. I recognized that I was not satisfied by living half-hearted for God, but rather wanted to be whole-hearted and truly follow Him all the days of my life. When I was a freshman in college, I made a commitment to truly follow Jesus and put Him number one in my life. Making this choice, to follow and love Jesus wholeheartedly, has been the best decision I have ever made. There is a difference between just praying a prayer to ask God to forgive you and between choosing to truly follow Him and make Him the Lord of your life.

Before I surrendered myself fully to Christ, I never knew that I could really go deep in God and experience His love in real, intimate way. I realize now that experiencing God’s joy, pleasure, and love is a reality! It can happen! God isn’t some distant, stoic Master that doesn’t care about us, but He is a passionate Pursuer and desires for close friendship with the very ones He created! He delights in His creation and desires all to repent and love Him! I also didn’t know that God still performed miracles today, healed the sick and also wanted us to give us the gifts of the Spirit (1 Cor. 12:7-11). Now, I have seen God move in such amazing ways such as healing people who are sick and giving joy to the brokenhearted. God is so generous and awesome!

It’s so amazing to look at my life and see how Jesus has truly changed me – my heart, my attitudes, and my desires. The Lord has changed my passions. I enjoy praying now. It’s not always easy or extremely exciting, but I now understand the power of prayer and that the Lord of the universe hears me when I cry out to Him. I even enjoy reading the Bible now for the Word of God is powerful and can be used as a weapon to defeat the enemy. I love spending time with Jesus, because I actually feel His presence, hear His voice, and know He delights in me! Isaiah 62:5- “as the bridegroom rejoices over the bride so shall your God rejoice over you.”

Fast forward to now – God has given me an amazing husband and two wonderful little boys that I am absolutely crazy in love with. He has been so gracious and kind to me. Now, I don’t want you to think that my life is always peachy keen; it’s not. I’ve faced many challenges, and the Lord continues to bring me opportunities that would prune me and make me more like Him. But I have chosen to follow Jesus – no turning back! He has done so much for me. He came to this earth to die for me and forgive my sins and has brought me from eternal death to eternal life. In conclusion, I will echo what David wrote in Psalm 116:1 – “I love the Lord, because He has heard my voice and my supplications. Because He has inclined His ear to me, therefore I will call upon Him as long as I live.”

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