I See You

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The world around me swirls and I am caught up in the motion. So many people in need. Abandoned. Alone. At risk. So many people enslaved. They need help. They need rescue. They need freedom. They need me. What can I do but pray? I can pray.

But what else? There must be more. There is more.

I am available. USE ME. I want to break down walls. But now I only see the walls. I see too much. It becomes too much. I can not see it all. It becomes a blur. I am burdened. I am sad. In the recesses of my heart are cries too deep for words.

I am still.

He speaks.

I listen.

I ask.

Do you see them, God? DO YOU? Why not rescue? Why not freedom? Why not deliverance?

In a moment, in worship… He whispers… I SEE YOU. I SEE THEM.

This same evening, I read with my daughter Exodus 3. Moses is drawn to the bush.  Believing he was unseen. NO. He was not unseen. I SEE YOU. I SEE THEM.

I feel like Moses. I can not compare to Moses. But I feel what he might have felt. He saw his people enslaved. He wanted to see justice. He wanted to break down walls. He took the judgement into his own hands. He killed. Afraid, he ran. To a desert hiding place. Yet found again, embraced by a father. He tends his father in laws flock. I SEE YOU. I SEE THEM. He is found again. He can not hide.

I have heard the cries of the people. My brothers and sisters across the earth in need of deliverance. I want to scream at every injustice. I want to obliterate the evil in this world. Yet He calls me to SEE as HE SEES. He calls me to see the wounded and the one who wounds. He calls me to see the abused and the abuser. He calls me to see the broken and the one who breaks. He calls me to see the prisoner and the guard. When the walls come down, they are ALL in need of freedom and deliverance.

He beckons me to know His voice and TRUST. 

I am doing what I see my Father doing. I am shepherding. I am caring for a flock. Yet I am drawn to the bush. The bush which never ceases to burn. My heart groans as the bush burns. The Spirit intercedes. He gently shows me…

I need to TRUST.

I heard the Lord speak in the whisper, in the moment of worship – I SEE YOU. I SEE THEM. My heart responds – I KNOW. I WILL TRUST.

God speaks. I see the affliction of My people… I have heard their cry… I know their sufferings… I have come to deliver them.

Sin abounds. All hell has broken loose on the earth. Hopelessness is center stage. Are we forgotten? Maybe you have felt? Maybe you have asked? But NO. We are not forgotten. HE SEES US. HE SEES THEM.

Rescue is coming for ALL. I know it. I will tend my flock as Moses did. Until the time comes when God says GO.

What is your spirit groaning for? Share and let me know ~ In Him, Leslie

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Fifty Shades of Love…

…because nothing says “I love you” more than a film laced with porn and violence… Happy Valentines Day!

A few months ago, we saw three minutes of porn and violence in the form of a romanticized trailer for an upcoming movie. The movie we actually paid to see was an intense WWII film, based on a true story of courage and unbroken determination. Yet, during most of the movie, I was distracted and disturbed by what I had seen in those three minutes. I wanted to scream. But I didn’t think that would go over too well in the middle of the movie. So I asked God to erase everything about it from my memory.

A few weeks ago, I took my children (whose eyes *see* everything) to a bookstore. My eyes glazed over the cover of this book laced with violence and porn, displayed on a table a few feet from the toy section where children play in this bookstore. I promptly turned it over. I wanted to pull a “Jesus in the temple with the money changers” and flip over the tables, but I held back my disgust and turned a few of the books over instead.

A few nights ago, the world celebrated, applauded and awarded a ‘song of the year’ grammy title to a song about a one. night. stand. I only caught a glimpse of the grammy’s the other night. And for the few moments I watched, while changing channels, this award being given. Sam Smith thanked the ‘man who broke his heart’ for the inspiration to write the song and win the grammy. and My heart broke. We rarely sing of true love anymore. We can not sing of what we do not understand.

If we do not know God’s love, we can not understand, receive, express or give Love. God is Love.

Nothing says “Happy Valentines Day” like a film full of porn and violence. Nothing says “I love you” more than a song about a one night stand.

Seriously?? …Is this what we have reduced LOVE to??

Please do not see this movie. ‘Fifty Shades of Shit’ (which was my original title idea, and my husband suggested I go another direction) Please do not waste your time, your energy or your money. Let’s get one thing straight – this movie is about MONEY. This is not art. This is not sex education. This is not sexual enhancement. This movie was made -and the books were written- purely to make money. Sex and money should never be partners.

My concern and disgust for ‘Fifty Shades…’ goes deeper than the movie or the books. We have a culture of choosing to believe and accept LIES. The lie says, ‘it’s okay to watch this movie, read this romance novel, peek at this magazine, listen to this song about a one night stand, scroll thru some porn…’ The lie says, ‘it’s harmless to invite porn into our marriages.’ The lie says, ‘it’s harmless to flirt, have a fling, have an affair.’ The lie keeps us in denial, ‘making it possible for a “john” to take advantage of a young girl and allow others to abuse her, to view her as his property, to make money off of her used body over and over again.’ The lie whispers to the buyer of the young girl held in bondage, ‘this is okay. there is nothing wrong with this abuse.’ When the TRUTH IS – there are SO MANY THINGS WRONG with this!!!

The TRUTH is we have a choice // don’t hire the prostitute // don’t participate in the cycle of human trafficking // don’t see the movie // look away from the magazine // close the book // turn off the t.v. // stop browsing porn sites // remove yourself from negative sexual conversation // flee from the temptation to flirt, have a fling, have an affair //

The TRUTH is there are many women, children and men in forced into slavery, held in bondage and sexual violence, being used against their will. They do NOT have a choice. WE have a choice. And yet we have the audacity to choose to SEE and applaud this movie and read the stupid books???? NOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Please. no. stop!

We need a ‘Joseph culture‘. We have a choice to flee from sin as Joseph fled from Potiphars wife… even when an opportunity presented itself… even though he probably would not have been ‘caught in the act’. He made a choice to flee. To be faithful to his God. Faithful to God’s Love. Joseph knew the Love of God, so he made the choice to say “No” and flee.

We have a choice to turn away from the images, even when know one else sees. We have a choice to say “No” and stop participating in the abuse. We have a choice to flee from sin and into the Love of Jesus. Wherever you are on the ‘spectrum’ of believing these lies, believing these things are okay… From browsing thru a soft porn magazine to becoming a “buyer” or a “john” caught up in the web of sexual slavery… You have a choice. Wherever you are – His Love is for you. and He is for you. You can choose the Love of Jesus. God is Love and He is for you. He desires to redeem mankind to Himself. To understand who True Love is. Who He is.

Then we will see Freedom Come. We will reject these movies, these books, these porn films, these magazines, the ability to oppress and abuse another human being in bondage. We will reject these lies and know the Truth. He is Jesus.

Please share your thoughts. Please freely share this blog. This is much deeper than a movie or a book series. I am praying for us. For freedom from these lies and for Truth to be known, as our stories rage on… In Him, Leslie

the year (or more) I didn’t mop . . .

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So here’s a little confession: I didn’t mop for over a year. It might actually *ahem* have been closer to a year and a half… maybe… But who’s counting when it’s been at least 365 days [or 52 weeks, if you prefer that calculation] since I last mopped my kitchen and dining room floors? We laid down a new floor in October of 2012. We might have mopped it once. If we did mop [and by we, I mean HE – my husband – because I seriously do not remember ever mopping our ‘new floor’] it was only the one time, which by using my impeccable math skills, would mean it’s actually been well over a year and a half of not mopping said floor.  Whew.

…Why am I telling you this? …Why am I sharing this (literal) dirty little secret? …Why did I post it on Facebook? …Am I strange? …Did the lack of mopping happening in my home drive me crazy for at least 52 weeks? …Am I proud of this confession? Yes.

Why + Why + Why + Because = F R E E D O M ! ! !

There is freedom in publicly announcing your flaws. There is freedom in full disclosure. There is freedom in not allowing fear to hold you back from your non-mopping hopes / dreams / desires. You know – I know – there are many of you *wishing* you had the guts to stand up to your mop and say NO. I will.not.mop. One>More>Day>>>. I will skip it. I will procrastinate. And I am OKAY with this!

There is F R E E D O M in declaring — I have more important things to do — like playing Legos, Barbies and watching FROZEN with my children. Mopping can wait until tomorrow — or a year from now.

So, a few days after I publicly humiliated myself and perhaps a few others who hung their heads in shame on my behalf, I chatted with my brother who lives in Oklahoma. The chat was not about my not-mopping skills, but alas he brought up the proverbial ‘elephant on the phone’ and asked me – Do you even own a mop? I had to stop and think of the answer. I was not 100% sure we owned a mop.

Fast forward our lives >>> One. Week. Later. I still have not mopped, AND we are now selling our home to move our family across the country. Fortunately, as our first house showing came upon us, it was a wonderful time to check and see if we did still own a mop. Adam searched, found and dug out the mop from behind all the important crap we keep in our garage. Like our old non-working refrigerator. Because… that’s surely one. more. thing. we need lying around our house right now. Right before a showing. Right before we are trying to move across the country. But ah-ha… He found the mop! Let the mopping commence!

And the last confession is this: I still didn’t mop for our showing. My amazing husband did.

So. The moral of this ridiculous story is: There is freedom in failure. There is freedom in declaring “I’m not perfect!” There is freedom in letting things go. As we are preparing to move our family across the country, we are fully aware of our failures. We are prepping our house to sell it and we are fully aware there is no way it will be perfect. There is no way we can keep a ‘model home’ with 3 small children and all their crap. Plus all our crap. We have lived in the comfort and shelter of an amazing home for 8.5 years. We are grateful for the provision we’ve had. We can not hold on to this place, but we will carry in our hearts always the memories, the mistakes, and moments made in our home. Our kids have grown in this home – We have grown in this home – not just in years, but in heart. But there is freedom in letting go. There is freedom in knowing what we don’t know. Once we sell our house, we don’t yet know where we will be living… There is freedom in knowing we are in good company with the unknowns “…The Son of Man has no place to lay His head.”

Sure, Martha was fussy about her housework, but she never mopped her dirt floors. Jesus never mopped. and Mary always chose sitting at His feet. SO, Let us all raise a glass to not over-mopping… Cheers!

And the story rages on… In Him, Leslie 😉

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Have you found freedom in failures? Let us know! We hope you’ll join us on our journey into the great unknown…