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Dress Rehearsal,

I posted this quote on my facebook page yesterday: “You perfect what you rehearse, be careful of what you are habitually practicing.”

I was in church while I posted it.  I had finished singing during praise and worship, I sat down and i scrolled down instagram for an update lol.  I seen a picture of my dad on my cousin’s page.  (I had taken note that his birthday was coming up a few days prior, but yesterday as I woke up, got dressed, went to church, and worshipped the date didn’t even cross my mind.)  So I looked at the caption and thought “Oh! That’s right, today IS the 17th.”

I started to make a Happy Birthday post, because that is what i’ve been doing every year since he passed away and before.  Along with the day he passed away, and Fathers Day, but then that is when I thought “You perfect what you rehearse, be careful of what you are habitually practicing.”  So I came to the conclusion that it is perfectly ok to miss my father, and to specifically miss him on holidays.  HOWEVER, to consciously and purposely make a point to remember and feel sad on that day would be to rehearse grief, and I am not interested in performing that in my everyday life.  I would rather be so consumed in good things that I stumble across it, than to purpose in my heart and mind to be sad.  I am NOT saying that making note of a missed loved one is unacceptable, this is just my personal example.

If you practice grief, you will perform grief.  If you rehearse fear, you will perform fear.  if you practice joy, you will perform joy.  If you rehearse love, you will perform love.

So, what are you practicing that will show up in your daily performance?

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He Understands

I was sitting on my bed, I didn’t really have words to say for prayer so I said just that; “I don’t really know how to put this into words.”  All of a sudden I was reminded of the scripture:  Matthew 27:46 And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?”  I broke down crying.  This was not because I was overwhelmed or extremely sad, I honestly cannot think of an emotion to accurately describe why I was in full blown tears lol.  I guess you could say that I was blown away.  Jesus made himself so real to me in this moment.  God who wrapped himself in flesh to come down, live as man, and die for my sins was made so real to me tonight.  I have had these realization moments before, but tonight was different.  I began to think about the moment of that scripture when Jesus cried out “Why have you forsaken me?”  and what came to mind was that Jesus has LITERALLY felt every feeling that we have felt.

If you’ve been following me for a while you know that I am extremely transparent, and today is no different.  I know very well that the bible says that God will never leave or forsake me, but I also know that suffering will cause you to cry out “WHY HAVE YOU FORSAKEN ME?!” I can relate to Jesus in this matter, (no I do not equate my very small issues to calvary and the crucifixion of Jesus Christ) I thank God that I serve a God that i can relate to by going to his word and seeing in scripture that Jesus is relatable.  There’s no feeling that I am feeling that he hasn’t experienced, there’s no situation that he cannot understand, there’s nothing that I can go through in my life that I can’t find the answer to in his life, and because of this there is absolutely NOTHING that I cannot talk to him about.  So many times we hear “God is tired of hearing you pray about the same thing.”  First of all, God does NOT get tired and secondly, If I have to come to him everyday until something is off of my heart I believe that it is worth it (sorry for that little rant, but I can’t stand unbiblical church talk lol).  If you feel abandoned, worried, tired, whatever the case…you’re not alone, and if no one else understands please know and understand that there is a Savior that wants to have a relationship with you where you can give him everything and rest in him. That is soooooo comforting to me!

This last thing is what has a HUGE grin on my face:

Matthew 27:50 And Jesus cried out again with a loud voice, and yielded up His spirit. 51 And behold, the [a]veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom…”

When Jesus gave up his spirit (died), because he was the living sacrifice for our sins there was no longer a separation between God and man! The veil of the temple was what separated man from the holy place of the temple.  The veil being torn represented that that separation wasn’t there anymore, which means that we have access to God.  When we die to ourselves, and allow Christ to live in us we have access to a personal relationship with God.

So, whatever you are going though…set that aside, yield to the spirit and talk to the one who understands.  He’s there with open arms.

You’re Going to Need a Shovel!

I love instrumental music! There’s something about being able to create your own sound and words.  Singing to instrumental worship music is absolutely freeing to me.  I was in a rehearsal or a service a while back and I remember being frustrated because I could not worship freely through song at home.  I began to wonder why, and I heard “The sound you want, you have to create.” A few months ago I made an investment.  I decided that I wasn’t going to sit on any more of the gifts that i have, and that I was going to perfect what had been given to me to encourage, minister to, and build up others as I am led to do so.

I learned a song in like five minutes today (by looking up the chords) and I started to play, and it took me back to that moment when I heard “the sound you want you have to create.”  I started to sing and it was an amazing feeling as I was able to freely worship through song and playing keys for the first time in a very long time! It reminded me of Matthew 25:14-28.

14-18 “It’s also like a man going off on an extended trip. He called his servants together and delegated responsibilities. To one he gave five thousand dollars, to another two thousand, to a third one thousand, depending on their abilities. Then he left. Right off, the first servant went to work and doubled his master’s investment. The second did the same. But the man with the single thousand dug a hole and carefully buried his master’s money.

So let me be transparent: I buried the gift of playing piano because I didn’t feel “good enough,” I was too lazy to perfect the gift, I compared myself to others, the list goes on and on really.  I’ve been playing the piano since I was 4 years old.  Besides writing that’s the only thing that I had been perfecting since childhood.  However, somewhere along the way I gave it up, never losing the ability but burying it thinking that it wouldn’t be useful or necessary to myself or anyone else.  I didn’t know that years later, I would need that very gift for MYSELF.

24-25 “The servant given one thousand said, ‘Master, I know you have high standards and hate careless ways, that you demand the best and make no allowances for error. I was afraid I might disappoint you, so I found a good hiding place and secured your money. Here it is, safe and sound down to the last cent.’

26-27 “The master was furious. ‘That’s a terrible way to live! It’s criminal to live cautiously like that! If you knew I was after the best, why did you do less than the least? The least you could have done would have been to invest the sum with the bankers, where at least I would have gotten a little interest.

28-30 “‘Take the thousand and give it to the one who risked the most. And get rid of this “play-it-safe” who won’t go out on a limb. Throw him out into utter darkness.’

Ouch…That hurt! It’s time to dig up what you’ve buried so that you can honor God, and serve others.  What God has given to you, he’s given to you based on your abilities.  That means that you CAN do it! Comparing yourself to others, laziness or whatever is stopping you cannot be used as an excuse.  So get your shovel, dig up what you think you have buried and use it!

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