jillbeingstill

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He Knew You First

My frame was not hidden from You when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, Your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in Your book before one of them came to be.” Psalm 139:15-16 NIV

Your parents may have titled you; planned, a surprise, the oops, an unwanted mistake, bonus child, or a even miracle. But God knew you intimately before you were created, and watched you as you formed. He saw you and loved you even before anyone else knew you existed. He sees you and loves you still.

Point to ponder while you wander…ordained means written or recorded. This means that before you were created you were assigned a purpose. It also means God knew, then, the choices you would make. Wise and unwise. Yet He loves and continually pursues you.

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Musical Monday…Undone

Undone. For me it is in the same vein as Natalie Grant’s “I Will Not Be Moved” & Stephany Gretzinger’s “Out of Hiding“.

Songs that reveal things I feel deeply but cannot describe.

“Undone” musically illustrates my opinion on a topic that I find to be the most impossible to describe due to overwhelming magnitude of its meaning to me. And then Paul Maybury and Lindsay Sweat do it in one word…. UNDONE.

So entertained by that.

Their song is sung by Kim Walker-Smith on her latest CD…which of course is exactly what I needed this season.

Here’s the song and lyrics…

When I’m crying from the darkness
When I’m looking for a sign
When I’m feeling like I can’t go on
You close in on all sides
You are stronger than my doubting
Your love finds me when I hide
And even when I try to live without You
You are always kind

I am undone, o-oh
I am undone

When You cried out from the garden
Let Your will be done, not mine
When You took the weight of my mistakes
So I don’t have to fight ’em
Now I let the sun rise on every scar and every sign
Of when You took this bruise and dying soul
And breathed it back to life

I am undone, o-oh
I am undone, o-o-oh! oh
I am undone, o-oh
I am undone, o-o-oh! oh

On and on, on and on
You carry me
You are there, You are there
Even in my wandering
When I fall, when I fall
Oh, let it be at the cross

And I am undone, o-oh
I am undone
I am undone, o-oh
I am undone, o-o-oh! oh

On and on, on and on
You carry me
You are there, You are there
Even in my wandering
When I fall, when I fall
Let it be at the cross
I am undone

Undone lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, Essential Music Publishing

Point to ponder while you wander… Let yourself be loved by Jesus. Right now. In this very moment. Don’t wait another second to receive Him and His love.

Real Deal

For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, so that you through His poverty might become rich.” 2 Corinthians 8:9 NIV

Point to ponder while you wander…Jesus willingly agreed to leave paradise, where He had everything, to be spit on, rejected, and publicly humiliated by those He came to save. All the while living a completely sinless life. His love for you is the real deal.

Maybe a Fence

What do you think of when you see this picture?

Do you think of home? Family? Protection? Style? Curb appeal?

I took photo this yesterday because it reminded me of wisdom passed on to me…

Don’t build walls. Build a fence.

If you’ve ever read Ezra and Nehemiah you might remember that the bulk of it is about rebuilding the defensive walls. Defensive walls for a city are a good thing. Defensive walls around a person, not so much.

If you build walls and isolate yourself, you may be protected from hurt, but you’re also not living an abundant life nor are you growing.

Tear down the walls, and build a fence instead. A fence is like a healthy boundary.

The gate in your fence allows you to participate. It allows you to communicate. And it allows you to let people in, some will be in the yard, some in the house, and some won’t be allowed past the gate. That’s why the gate opens, closes, and locks.

Only Jesus should be allowed access to every part of you. He has top secret clearance and need to know.

Everyone else has a varying degree of clearance and need to know. You need boundaries in every relationship.

Healthy boundaries foster your growth.

But walls so high they block out the sun, stunt your growth.

There have been times in my life that my walls were so high and so thick that I missed opportunities that God Himself provided for me. I simply was not open to anyone or anything.

I trusted no one. Not even God.

Truth is I was alive but not living. And I was miserable. But I stayed there far too long because I felt safe in the little world I made for myself.

It took time. It took effort. It took counseling. But I slowly began opening up to trusting others.

It isn’t always easy. You will make mistakes. I did! You’ll probably fall and fail a time or two. I do! Sometimes you will trust the wrong person. But you’ll learn and grow, just like I am.

Point to ponder while you wander…

Life is both miraculous and brief. So…

Maybe replace you walls with a fence and open the gate a bit.

Come out to play.

Be open to new adventures.

Trust God.

John 10:10… “I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.” NKJV

Isaiah 53:18-19… “Do not remember the former things, nor consider the things of old. Behold, I will do a new thing, now it shall spring forth; shall you not know it? I will even make a road in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.” NKJV

Psalm 91:2… “I will say of the Lord, ‘He is my refuge and my fortress; My God, in Him I will trust.‘” NKJV

Planned Beforehand

“O Lord, You are my God; I will exalt You and praise Your Name, for in perfect faithfulness you have done marvelous things, things planned long ago.” Isaiah 25:1

Point to ponder while you wander…Father God knew both the wonderful & the unwise choices the human race would make, so before any of our mistakes happened He planned to redeem us by sending Jesus. And Jesus agreed! So grateful to be loved that much.

Praying for…

But if you will listen, I say to you, love your enemies and do something wonderful for them in return for their hatred. When someone curses you, bless that person in return. When you are mistreated and harassed by others, accept it as your mission to pray for them.” Luke 6:27-28

Jesus isn’t saying this because he agrees with what that person has done to you. It’s not about the other person, it’s about you and your reactions. It’s okay to feel your feelings…hurt, betrayal, anger…but deal with them. Don’t let them seep into your heart.

If you’re not careful with your heart, you’ll become negative and unforgiving. Then bitter and resentful, and even revengeful. Don’t poison yourself. Take your feelings and turn them into prayer.

Point to ponder while you wander….Praying for your enemies and those who’ve hurt you directs your negative feelings into a positive. It changes you for the better, and invites God into the situation. Wisdom, peace, hope, and love enter when God does.

Singlehood FYIs

My frustrations with living in the singlehood usually have more to do with people saying random crap to me than actually being an “old maid.”

Would I like a partner in life? Yes.

But it is not my biggest priority.

I’ll be honest…once I hit 40 the majority of folks considered me an old maid and stopped saying this kind of crap to me, but there are a few who still like to be cliche and nosy.

Here are a few of my favorite frustrations over the years…

People who tell me “this is your year” or “it’s your turn to get married.”

FYI- I caught the bouquet at my friend’s wedding in May of 1998. It’s been “my turn” for nearly 20 years.

People who say “You’re wonderful/amazing/so awesome, why aren’t you married? I just don’t understand.”

FYI-That is not a complement. Nor is it encouraging to me in any way. It is a backhanded insult. You are actually saying, “You seem great, what inner damage can’t I see?”

Well meaning people who tell me, “God’s got someone for you. Don’t worry.”

FYI-Bless your heart. I know you mean well, but it sounds like trite BS when you say this to me. It’s like, “Oh, Baby Girl, I know your team went 0-10 this year, but there’s always next year.”

People who tell me “You really should put yourself out there.”

FYI-I leave my house and interact with the public 6-7 days a week. I’m out there.

People who tell me…”You really should try online dating!”

FYI-I started filling out online dating stuff once a loooong time ago, I heard God say “Jill, what are you doing? I never told you to do that.” God’s on it, therefore I don’t have to be.

Yes. I also know people who met their spouse online too. But God told me no. Generally I listen to Him, He tends to know stuff I don’t.

And before I go…Just because a guy is single, and believes in God does not mean he’s perfect for me.

FYI-Thanks for the confirmation that you think I’m a hot mess by fixing me up with the guy that drank 4 mai tai’s in less than 20 minutes, lied about his height, and actually has a crush on you. You have just ended our friendship. Yes. That actually happened.

Point to ponder while you wander…I’ve got a rather large list of things I want to accomplish in my lifetime. I have another impressive list of things I want to see and places to go. Oh and I have a full time regular job too. So I am rather busy.

If God wants me to get married, He’ll send someone to hunt me down. Cuz that will be the only way it’s gonna happen people. So quit with the BS.

In case you have forgotten…Neither Jesus nor Paul ever married. #boom