Wednesday, April 27, 2005

back to our past

a devotional i got that is worth reading...

"A man who refuses to admit his mistakes can never besuccessful. But if he confesses and forsakes them, hegets another chance" (Proverbs 28:13, TLB).

In teaching classes and counseling hurting people I often remind them that the problem is never the problem and the pain we feel is not the pain that is. This usually takes a while to sink in. In most difficulties and conflicts what we see is the presenting problem which, more often than not, is the symptom of a deeper problem or “the fruit of a deeper root.” As someone else said, “When we have unresolved problems/issues, God is merciful in that he gives us symptoms.” Relational conflicts, anxiety, insomnia, depression, addictions, spiritual dryness, physical ills, and any of a score of other symptoms can becaused or greatly aggravated by unresolved guilt overpast unconfessed sins, a deeply buried resentment and a failure to forgive someone from a past hurt, unresolved grief from the loss of a love, or rebelling against the will of God, etc., etc. The roots of some of these issues can go all the way back to early childhood. All need to be confronted and resolved if we are to fully live and fully love, and maintain sound physical, emotional, relational, and spiritual well-being.

Furthermore, many of our physical symptoms can be symbolic. Some ulcers, for example, are not caused by what we eat but by what is eating us. Tension headaches can be from jamming up anger in our head. Aching shoulders may be caused by feeling under a heavy load and so on. And if I have a pain in the neck ... I may be one, or have someone or some situation in my life that I feel is a pain in the neck!

Tracing symptoms to their causes and resolving these opens the door for healing and recovery. If we don’t connect to and resolve the original pain that is the root cause of our symptoms, we will suffer the ongoing pain of the symptoms. This is what I mean by saying, “the pain we feel is not the pain that is.” After David confessed his sin, he said, "What happiness for those whose guilt has been forgiven! What relief for those who have confessed their sins and God has cleared their record. There was a time when I wouldn't admit what a sinner I was. But my dishonesty made me miserable and filled my days with frustration. All day and all night your hand was heavy on me. My strength evaporated like water on a sunny day until I finally admitted all my sins to you and stopped trying to hide them. I said to myself, 'I will confess them to the Lord.' And you forgave me! All my guilt isgone."

David gives us an excellent example to follow.


it was one of those days. one of those days where anything and everything reminded me of him. one of those days where just the glimpse of his picture made me cry. one of those days where i wanted to be angry... but couldn't.

one of those days where i really missed tim. a lot.

everyday i miss him, but today was one of those days. almost as if i had just found out for the first time again... the sadness seemed new. it's been one of those days where i could have really gone for hearing the ever famous "timlaugh". it was a day where i really wanted to hear "JACK JAck jack... ATTACK ATTack attack." a day where i wanted to be introduced to a new band that "f-ing rocks!"... a day where i wish i was given more advice on how to improve my 200IM time... and a day... where reality really hit me. again.

often times when i have "one of those days"... i feel ridiculous. i feel embarassed. i feel too emotional. the world tells us to "get over it" or to "move on". we begin to feel like we cannot express our emotions and we cannot ever be anything less then 'okay'. today i was reminded though that it is okay for me to still grieve.

"there is a time for everything, a season for every activity under heaven... a time to cry and a time to laugh. a time to grieve and a time to dance" (ecclesiastes 3:1, 4 NLT).

emotions are good. we have fallen into the trap of believing that they are not okay. christians think that they are supposed to be great all the time... good luck with that one folks. up until the day that we leave this earth, we will struggle and we will be emotional. and guess what... that's okay! i don't know about you, but thats a HUGE relief to me...

even today when i really wanted to hang out with tim, i was comforted. i was held during the moments that i cried. i was told that it was okay for me to grieve. ... and that made me smile. the only One who i needed to go to was there, reminding me that it was okay. so many times do i forget that. but being reminded... that brought me joy.

i still miss tim a lot, but things are different.

Friday, April 22, 2005

"too young"

the Lord freaking rocked my face off tonight...

since november, i have been constantly hanuted by the words "you are too young"..... "too young to hang out with those people", "too young to start this ministry", "too young to have that gift", "too young for him to be interested", "too young to be involved with anything related to church"...

...lies... it's all a load of crap. i knew it was all lies, but i guess never really knew.

"you are not too young." -- for the first time in 6 months, i truly heard and believed these words tonight. a weight was lifted off of my back and i am finally happy that i am only 19 (almost 20); no longer am i discouraged by my age or ashamed to tell people that i am 19. yes... i am young compared to a lot of the people from church that i hang out with; the average age is probably 25. but just because of the age difference, it does not mean that God has not made me capable of doing His work. there is no where in the Bible thats says:

"one must reach the age of 25 before capable of serving and doing work for the Lord."
from, God

earlier today, a friend reminded me of the verse, "and don't let anyone put you down because you're young. teach believers with your life: by word, by demeanor, by love, by faith, by integrity" (1 timothy 4:12). we are constantly telling our junior high kids not to be discouraged by adults when they look down upon them or do not expect someone who is 13 to be able to serve, because they are capable... yet i am the one sitting there feeling like i myself am too young. some of these 13 years olds have it more together then i do.

people are too stuck on age. what's the point? my job is to serve the Lord with the abilities He has given me and from the experiences that i have encountered... my age should not stop me. my focus should be growing in my maturity with God. just because someone is older than me, it does not mean that they know more or are right about everything... i could be more mature spiritually than a 40 year old for all i know.

do not let the lies of being "too young" bind you. you are not too young to serve the Lord.

Monday, April 18, 2005


we all have some sort of add or adhd.

attention deficit disorder (add) : very hard for one to concentrate, pay attention, and/or sort their thoughts.

symptoms of add:
-fail to give close attention to details
-difficulty susstaining attention in tasks
-easily destracted
-difficulty organizing
-rarely follows instructions

attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (adhd) : very hard for one to control their behavior, pay attention, and/or control their thoughts

symptoms of the adhd:
-unable to sit still
-unable to finish tasks (procrastinate)
-easily destracted by extraneous stimuli
-talk excessively/interupting others/not listening to what others are saying

yep... everyone between the ages of 18 and 25 definitely have one of the two. this world is crazy. we run around like a bunch of chickens with our heads cut off, trying to figure out how we can fill every second of our day with something. and often times that "something" is worthless or useless. why can't we ever sit down and relax? better yet, why can't we sit down, quiet our spirits, and listen for God?

being a christian has been turned into a show of who can do and be involved in the most things. it has become a competition on who can look the most "spiritual". it's all about doing; there's no passion behind it. i hate to say it, but the religion is becoming more important then the relationship. there is something happening internally which is the cause of the loss of this passion. the connection between ourselves and God is lessening.

...honestly, when was the last time you just sat down, in silence, and heard God speak? i mean, really heard God speak? once a week is not good enough. so often do people say, "i can't hear the Lord" or "He doesn't speak to me." but then the question can be raised, were you really listening? God wants to speak to all of us; He does and He will. yet most of the time we feel the need to fill any moment of silence with our words and our requests. God is just waiting for us to shut our mouths and let Him get in a word. God is waiting to connect with us again and set our hearts on fire with

we don't know what it's like to just sit and be silent. the world has pulled us into it's fast paced routine and it's pressing this add/adhd on all of us. in order to connect, we have to take time and be quiet.

get out. go listen. psalm 46:10.

Friday, April 15, 2005


i think i want to get a tatoo...

for the past couple of weeks i've really had this weird desire to go out and get one. if you don't know, i'm terrified of needles, so me wanting this is something completely out of the blue.

i want it to say "my Beloved" in hebrew ( ילש בוהא ) and i want it to get it on the top of my foot. okay... might be hard to picture, but just go with me on this. i'm not going to go get it for a long time though, if ever, because i want to make sure that i really want it.

i know that i dont need a tatoo to remind me what i stand for, but by having it it will help to be a constant reminder that Christ is all i need and that He is the most important thing in my life. nothing can ever take the place of Him. in fact, He is my Beloved and i am His.

i heard You call to me / You said come up here, come up now / my beloved / my beloved / You said come up here, come up now / my beloved, my beloved

Thursday, April 14, 2005

when we are satisfied

in the place of suffering / there's a God worth worshiping -- jason upton : 'face of time'

joy should not depend on the kind of day that we may be experiencing. whether we worship God or not, should not depend on how we might be feeling.

john piper said at the passion 05 conference: "devote yourself with all your mind, with all your heart, and with all your strength to persuing your joy in God. you should persue the enlargement and the intensification and the deepening of your joy so hard that that joy in Christ can be shaken by no pain and can be competed with by no pleasure. that's your goal in life."

even when our hearts have been stomped on... even when our hearts have been broken... even when we feel like we have nothing... and even when we feel like we have no one, there is still a God worth worshiping. when we are completely satisfied in Him, we find that nothing can move us. nothing. that joy that we share in Christ can battle anything.

remember that God never said walking with Him would be easy.

"i got news for you... the Christian life isn't hard. the Christian life isn't even difficult... the Christian life is impossible!" (louis giglio - passion 05)

Christ knows that we cannot do it... that is why He enters us because He can do it.

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

brain crush

i have a brain crush. i've actually had this brain crush for many years now. you might be thinking to yourself, "jackie... what the heck is a brain crush?"

brain crush: a infatuation on a persons mind; nothing of sexual implication or hopefulness for the formation of a relationship; they have many intelligent and wise things to say; purly meant to increase your own knowledge by listening to them speak and/or reading what they write

everytime i read oswald chambers, i am reminded of this brain crush that i have on him. if you aren't aware, oswald chambers is a very famous christian author who died back in 1917. after his death, his wife put together a book called my utmost for His highest, in which it's compiled of many notes of different lectures that chambers gave in the Bible teaching ministry he created. i am astonished in the way that his mind thinks; it continues to remind me that the Holy Spirit is the one who spoke these words through him. if i could sit down and talk with any three people over coffee, chambers would definitely be there... along with justin timberlake and ghandi.

today i was reading in my utmost for His highest and chambers caught my attention (like always) when he said, "the Holy Spirit cannot be accepted as a guest in merely one room of the house -- He invades all of it. and once i decide that my 'old man' (that is, my heredity of sin) should be identified with the death of Jesus, the Holy Spirit invades me. He takes charge of everything." if we are desiring to be filled with the Spirit and live our lives for Christ, we must allow Him to be alive in every area of our lives. not just during the week. not just when we go to church. not just when we feel hurt. walking with Christ is a full time job with no 'ifs', 'ands', or 'buts.' if you're going to run with God, then run. we must let Him into the deepest parts of our hearts; He already knows everything, so why not give Him permission to enter?

i wish i was better at this. uncounsiously deep down, i am convinced that i can handle certain things on my own and that i know best. thats crap. by me holding these things, i'm not allowing God to enter into "every room of my house." it's not an easy task. knowing when and how to surrender everything is one of the most complicated things ever. ever.

thanks oswald.

Monday, April 11, 2005


tonight we had our second dodgeball game... we got killed. as we were playing, i found myself not having one hint of fun. out of the four games that we played, i may have been in for a total of 33.56 seconds. the other team was wearing all black, and their goal was to demolish any team that they came in contact with...

i hate to compare this night to satan and evil, but after the game it's how i felt. satan wants to murder us and destroy us in any possible way that he can; he will do anything and everything to try this. its kind of like the team we played. they showed no mercy. i was getting hit left and right with the dodgeballs, knocking me out every 5 seconds. satan is doing just that to me right now. he has been for the past couple of months. every moment that i'm able to run back onto the court, seconds later i'm out.

this game took place in the church gym. in church... with believers. just as christians were knocking me out of the game tonight, thats exactly how life has felt. the connection between my sisters and brothers is not there. i walk into church and feel as though i've been pelted in the face. God is all that we need and He is all that i desire, but why this disconnection from the people i should be having fellowship with? why does it feel as though believers are standing with satan, firing dodgeballs at me to get me out of the game? just as God knows my heart, satan also knows exactly the areas that pull me down...

but i will not be shaken.

Thursday, April 07, 2005

no independence here

it's such a relief to know that we do not have to, and cannot, beat temptation and fight the battles of this world by our own strength. if that were the case, i myself would have failed years ago. if in God's mind we are all supposed to stand up on our own two feet and fight all alone, then we all would have failed from the moment that we set foot on the earth. the Lord doesn't want us to fight alone because He kows we can't. He wants to help, and He will, we just have to let Him.

do you remember that song from years back by destiny's child called 'independant women'?

the shoes on my feet / i've bought it
the clothes i'm wearing / i've bought it
the rock i'm rockin' / i've bought it
'cause i depend on me / if i wanted the watch you're wearin' i'll buy it
the house i live in / i've bought it
the car i'm driving / i've bought it
i depend on me (i depend on me)

all the women who are independent / throw your hands up at me
all the honeys who makin' money / throw your hands up at me
all the mommas who profit dollas / throw your hands up at me
all the ladies who truly feel me / throw your hands up at me

this song is crap... yes musically it's crap, but i'm mainly referring to the lyrics. the world goes around telling us all (especially women) that we need to be able to stand up on our our two feet and be independent. it says, if we don't stand up alone, we will fail in life; the only way to success is by doing things on our own. ...well i say the opposite... if i don't get support, and i try to be an "independent woman", thats when i will fail. thats when i have failed. every moment of my life where i have said, "okay God, i'm gonna try this one on my own"... seconds later i've then fallen flat on my face.

"...My grace is enough; it's all you need. My strength comes into it's own in your weakness..." -- 2 corinthians 12:9a (the message)

God did not create us to be able to handle things by ourselves. if He had created each of us to stand up and be these "independent men/women", then what good is He? if we are able to fight battles and prevail without Him, then why would God have created us in the first place? He wants us to depend on Him. He longs for us to depend on Him. again, if He had made us into beings who were capable of being on our own, then He is nothing to us.

i will not run in this world thinking i can do everything by my own strength. it's only by His strength that i will stand firm.

"He's solid rock under my feet, breathing room for my soul, an impregnable castle: i'm set for life." -- psalm 62:2 (the message)