Thursday, March 27, 2008

100th Post

It's my Blog anniversary! This is my 100th post. I have really enjoyed having my blog and it has given me the opportunity to share my writing with others. Selah's Space has been a place to take the time out of my very busy schedule to stop and think about what is happening around me and write down my thoughts. Too often we sail through and don't make note of these. In our busyness, we still need to find time to encourage others and share our faith.

I started on March 2, 2007 with a goal to write something every day. Well, a year later (and more than 100 days) I am not writing every day, but I am pleased with how it has turned out. I have met many bloggers and have thoroughly enjoyed surfing the Blog World.

To all the new bloggers - keep blogging!

To my blog readers - I hope it has been worth your time and I look forward to reading more of your comments.

Do you like my "100"? Check out this link to Cool Text.

Selah Y

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Pay It Forward

Easter Sunday is a celebration of the Resurrection of Jesus. It is symbolized by the empty tomb. This IS the Good News – He who was dead is ALIVE again!! Jesus has risen – He is no longer in the tomb where they laid him. The stone that sealed the entrance was rolled away – releasing Jesus from the grip of death. His victory becomes ours as we believe in Him. It is a key part of our faith as Christians.

Good Friday is represented by the Cross. Often this is the picture of Easter we remember most because of the visual impact it has on us. How could we not be affected by it? Crucifixion was a long and torturous execution – meant to be cruel and humiliating. Some depictions have been “sanitized” as not to offend the viewers, but recent versions have tried to be more accurate (like the movie: The Passion). How do you portray a public execution without the horror of it?

Jesus willingly endured the cross in order to purchase our salvation. It COST Him dearly. Yes, salvation is offered to us as a free gift, but only because the price was already paid – with blood (the sacrifice of a perfect Lamb). Do we really realize what He endured to bring that freedom to us? Do we realize what our inheritance really is? I think if many did understand it more fully, they would not treat it so lightly. It is a so valuable – a precious gift beyond our ability to ever receive it on our own merit.

I watched a movie tonight called "Pay It Forward" (click for web site), in which an 11-year-old boy was given an assignment at school: THINK OF AN IDEA FOR WORLD CHANGE, AND PUT IT INTO ACTION. How can we change the world? A big assignment!! On our own, we can’t – it’s too big. But here is his idea: Do something real good for three people. And then when they ask how they can pay it back, tell them they have to Pay It Forward to three more people. It has to be something where you don’t get rewarded – you pay the reward forward and watch it snowball.

I had a similar experience when I ran out of gas and a man came along and put gas in my car from his lawnmower gas jug – it was enough to get me to the gas station. When I offered to pay for the gas, he said, “Just bless someone else when the opportunity presents itself.” Wow – doing good for someone else with no expectation of personal reward – THAT would truly change the world!!

One thing that was emphasized in the movie was that it had to cost you something in order to have a big impact. It couldn’t just be something small or easy. It had to be big – something the person couldn’t do for themselves and couldn’t pay you back for it. Isn’t this what God did for us? It cost Jesus His life – His whole life. We couldn’t do it for ourselves (impossible) and we cannot pay Him back – there is nothing we can do in exchange for His gift of salvation. Then all He asks is that we tell others the “Good News” so they can believe and be blessed too.

The tomb may be empty this Easter, but the Gospel is full and Jesus is alive. The tomb was a place of death, but God brought life where there was no hope or future. He set in motion events that would forever change the world and He wants to change our world too. Accept His gift of salvation and then Pay It Forward to those who do not know. There will be a cost to spread the Gospel and we will not reap the reward for ourselves, but it WILL change the world. That’s the Promise of Easter!!

Selah Y

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

What's Your Excuse?

Dancing with Destiny: Quotes from Dreamers: “Facing the Dream Killers”

We Hide behind Excuses
An obvious dream killer is one that we might call a "nat­ural" hindrance, a problem that we face in life: "I can't speak….I'm not smart enough….I'm shy and lack people skills….I'm a single parent….I'm not a leader….I'm not talented enough….I'm too old…." Insert your own natural disability—your excuse—that you think keeps you from your dreams.

What are your excuses? Do you disqualify yourself before you even start? Are you measuring yourself by someone else’s expectations? Is the list on “auto play” – like a tape repeating over and over until you automatically respond with the same answers?

Our tendency is to look at these hindrances and say, "I would like to do such and such, but I have this problem," or, "The world values thus and so, and I'm not like that, so I guess I'm out." We look at these excuses and limitations and disqualify ourselves. God never does that. He says,

He puts the dreams in our hearts, and then He wants to take us on the journey to walk those dreams out. Remember, our dreamer God has bigger dreams for our lives than we do. Sometimes He has to ambush us to get us to our destinations as we travel through the seasons of our lives.

Wouldn’t it be amazing to know without a doubt what God’s plan is for your life? What would you do? Would you write it down? Then what? He DOES have a plan for your life!! He WANTS to reveal it to you. ASK Him. It will bring you peace and hope. It will be an exact fit – tailor made just for you – prepared for you before you were born!!

God takes unlikely people and does supernatural things with them.

I have heard and read lots about Kathryn Kuhlman. I didn’t know that she was dyslexic. Yet God called her to speak to crowds of people and move in signs, wonders and miracles. That’s God – using what others consider foolish and confounding those who think themselves wise. Taking what we think is a handicap and showing what HE can do with her willingness to step out and into God’s dream for her. He LOVES to take the “throw-aways” and the “washed-up” and make them His heroes. They are hidden treasures just waiting to be released.

No, we will not all be called to do what Kathryn Kuhlman did. But why try to live her dream? God has something for you that only you can fulfill – your destiny – not a second-hand dream. Has He revealed it to you? Have you asked Him what it is? Is it bigger than you thought it would be?

Are you giving excuses like Moses did before the burning bush? Don’t look at the hindrances. Don’t disqualify yourself before you even begin. He knew what God was asking of him. God knew what HE could do. Moses had a huge destiny to fulfill. God had a plan to deliver His people. It was already pre-planned – Moses just had to obey and TRUST God to walk it out with him. Don’t try to fulfill it without God – but WITH GOD, watch what happens!!

So what are your excuses?

Selah Y

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Creative Dreamers

Dancing with Destiny: Quotes from Dreamers: “Dream Killers ~ Opening”

Are you a dreamer? I don’t mean a “day-dreamer” who is lost in a fantasy world to escape reality. I am talking about “dreaming” of a bigger future – bigger than the limitations that you see around you today. Do you ever “dream” about what God might do through YOU? Read what Jill wrote at the beginning of this chapter.
Once we understand that we were born to be dream­ers, we face the realization of how small and limited our dreams really are. We become so locked into mind-sets, strongholds, disappointments and hurts that we do not dream anymore. Why can’t we dream? Why can’t we be creative? Actually, we can! We are creative by design. It is in our DNA; it is who we are. God created us to be creative.

As adults we think, I’m not an artist; I’m not creative. Unless we block it, creativity will flow from us—whether it is through problem solving, juggling family schedules, accounting or computer programming. We have believed the lie that we are not creative. And if we are not creative, then we have no heart for dreaming.

Wow. This quote jumped off the page. “Locked.” How many are walking around declaring that they are “free” when in fact, they are not walking in all that God has for them? Why not? What caused them to lay down their dreams? “We have believed the lie.” When you truly believe something is true, it affects everything you do. You will live accordingly.

God is so creative. This is even expressed in His names – He is the “Great Creator”!! He created heaven and earth and everything else. He created us to be creative, too. As children, we were encouraged to be creative, but some have laid it down – “Childish”, they say, “No time for such things.”

Have you “believed the lie” that you “are not creative”? Has it been shut down or squashed?
We must start with being willing to dream again. We must get past the lies that want to surface every time we try to move forward. We must deal once and for all with the negativity that has plagued us our entire lives. We need to say, “The dream killers are not going to stop me. I am not listening to those who say that it is impossible or that it will cost too much money or that I don’t have the talent to accomplish it. I am going to give it a try anyway.” We start moving, and we find that we have creative instinct after all.

Recently, I attended meetings where they prayed to release our creativity. It went deep. Creativity IS a natural outflow of being in God’s presence – how can we spend time with Him and not reflect His nature? Your creative expression may look different than mine, and that’s OK. We are to be creative in our own ways – as God created us be. He LIKES variety.

Got a new idea? Are you making something just a little different than someone else? That’s your creativity coming out. Feed it – it will grow!! Dream a little and then dream a lot. God loves when we dream big. He’s a big God – bigger than our universe. He is God!!

Are you willing to dream again? Have mind-sets limited your ability to dare to dream? Are you willing to unlock the strongholds built to keep you from fulfilling God’s destiny for you? Can you lay aside past disappointments and losses to make room for what God is waiting to reveal to you today? Will you allow Him to heal your wounded heart?

LIES have blocked our creative flow and limited our ability to dream. God’s Truth will set us free. HIS Light dispels all darkness. He is calling us to start dreaming again. Open your heart and hear what He is saying to you today. Then start dreaming…….

Selah Y

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Shattered Dreams, Broken Pieces

Suddenly dreams are shattered.
Broken pieces smashed on the floor.
Tears lie in puddles,
Cries in the night go unheard.

What is there to hope for?
Where can relief be found?
Why is God not acting?
Despair overwhelms.

Everything is distorted,
Dark clouds hang overhead.
Numb the pain, silence the voices,
Your heart is shutting down.

Who is there to pick up the pieces?
How can they be restored?
The original is gone forever,
Abandoned and thrown away.

Jesus sees our broken pieces.
He restores shattered lives.
He creates beauty out of ashes,
Brings new life from destruction.

His Light shines into our darkness,
Hope ignites our heart.
Slowly pieces fall into place.
He makes something beautiful of your life.

Give your shattered dreams to Jesus.
Let Him rearrange the pieces.
Things tossed aside become precious.
He redeems the treasure inside.

Will you trust Him with your heart?
Will you allow Him to heal?
He is waiting to redeem it.
He is calling to you today.

Nothing is impossible for God to mend.
His plan for you still stands.
Your destiny cannot be stolen,

Selah Y
13 March 2008

Monday, March 10, 2008

Follow His Lead

Dancing with Destiny: Quotes from Dreamers: “In the Broom Closet of Prayer”

I love Jill’s story. It’s so simple – we’ve all been there!!

I began pleading with God to rapture me! But I was trapped by my promise. God had ambushed me to push me through the “birth canal” and into what would eventually become my destiny.

When we feel pushed into a corner, our first reaction is to plead with God for an escape hatch to open and save us from facing the situation. Many times this is the very thing God is going to use to help us to GROW! If we knew all that we would have to face and overcome, many of us would not have signed up. In high school, I never envisioned doing the things I am doing now. God brought me to this place through the things I experienced on my life’s journey. Don’t jump ahead of God. He has it planned. All things together shape us into who we are today.

Don’t fret – God teaches us as we go. I like this part of her story when she was scheduled to speak at a service:

The Pastor asked her, “Didn’t you write down your story and memorize it?”

Jill answered, “Well, no. I didn’t know I was supposed to.”

He said, “You have to have a script! What were you planning to do?”

“Well, you see,” she stammered, “God, He talks to me, and I listen and then just repeat it.”

He looked shocked and the words fairly erupted from him. “No! You can’t do it that way!”

But that is exactly what He wants us to do. Learn to hear His voice and then obey what He tells us. We are not all going to do things the same way. Don’t try to do what God has called someone else to do – do what He has called YOU to do. The bonus is: it will be much easier to do what comes naturally to you anyway.

I am moving constantly toward my destiny. And so are you! God starts with us every day right where we are—using all of where we have been. The problem is, we lose sight of the movement in our calling and grow frustrated or disillusioned about fulfilling our destinies.

Don’t give up!! You are moving forward. Can you see the earth moving? It is. Ever watch the moon? It doesn’t seem to be moving when you look at it, but look away and then come back and look again. It moves across the night sky – slowly, steadily – until it’s time for the sun to come up. EVERY day the cycle is repeated. How silly it would be to get frustrated with the moon for not moving faster or upset because it won’t go in a different direction after we prayed. God has set it on a sure path. Walk on God’s path for YOU!

Selah Y

Why Dream?

Dancing with Destiny: Quotes from Dreamers: “In the Broom Closet of Prayer”
Do you realize that your life is not a mistake? It starts with God’s dream for you. We are created in the image of our Father, we are called to be creative dreamers.

Dreaming is wild and fun. In our heart of hearts, we would never choose a life that has no adventure. It is be­cause of our fear and our smallness that we wind up seek­ing only what is “safe.” We learn to value comfort and security. But what we call security is really insecurity and mediocrity. God wants us to take risks, to know the thrill and exhilaration of dreaming big.

God never punishes us when we dream big. He wants us to dream big dreams. He is calling us to be “007” special-ops agents behind the scenes for Him. With Jesus our potential is unrestricted.
Wow. This sure goes along with our theme of Taking the Limits Off. “Our fear and smallness = seeking what is safe.” He calls us to take risks – not blindly diving into something, but following His lead and trusting He will not lead us astray. HE is with us every step of the way – Don’t go alone. Lone Rangers become easy targets for the enemy to surround and defeat.

Why is this so important for us to understand? Because God has prepared us for this hour. Each of us needs to pray and get fresh revelation with understanding for this critical time in history. We need to hear strategies from the counsels of God.

The enemy sees your potential. He knows that your life has God-ordained destiny. Your dreams are dangerous to him. If you embrace God’s full purposes for your life, you will be a powerful weapon to defeat him and bring freedom to many.

This quote speaks SO much to me. We cannot see into the spiritual realm unless God reveals it to us. The Bible says we are sealed and with Jesus living in us, I can picture what it would look like spiritually as we walk into a dark place. We SHINE and the darkness cannot help but notice you. Ever been growled at? It’s a weird experience but very reassuring to realize that you are recognized as belonging to God. We need to be “Glow-in-the-Dark” Christians – shining in dark places.

I don’t think we fully understand that WE are dangerous to the enemy of our souls. When we begin walk in ALL that God has for us, he cannot stop us. He can only oppose us by distracting us from our mission or trying to deceive us into believe we are not really who God says we are. Learn who you are in Christ. Walk in the authority that God has given to YOU. Don’t lay it down or give it away. If you feel it is “lost” or “stolen”, ask God to restore it to you. He will give you everything you need to fulfill your destiny. Once we learn it, we can pick up our weapons, walk in our destiny, and bring the same freedom to others.
Selah Y

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Don't Turn Back

Dancing with Destiny: Quotes from the Introduction

The Lord says to us, Your dreams are like cup of water, but My dreams for you are like the vastness of an ocean.
We cannot even imagine what God has planned for us. It truly is like comparing a glass of water to the ocean. We long for sip and He wants to submerge us!!

Has your life turned out totally different from the way you dreamed it would be? Have you grown weary because of shattered hopes, delayed answers and painful regrets? Perhaps you have gone through the routines of life and walked with God for a long time, but now you seem to have lost vision for your life. Once when you were young and vibrant in God, you had a cause to die for, but instead of dying for a cause, now you find yourself dying.
Look to the One who brings life and resurrection power to every situation.

Destiny is a progression of cycles and seasons. Destiny is like a giant tapestry. He has already dreamed about you. Your destiny is the divine journey that you are living right now. It may look different from what you imagined, but God, the masterful dream weaver, does not make mistakes with anyone’s life and destiny.
Remember HE is Master Dreamer. HIS plan for you is perfect!

You cannot go backward—you know too much. Where would you go anyway? There is a longing in you that can be satisfied only by God Himself. We can become disillusioned and settle for sitting on the beach and watching others ride the waves. If we wait forever to seek our dreams, we will never find them.

Jesus spoke to someone who was, in every respect, dead to his dreams. Delayed answers and shattered hopes had left him with no seeming possibility of fulfilling his destiny. Are you in that situation? Then listen to Jesus’ words: “Lazarus, come forth!”
The Lord is calling you to come forth, take off the grave clothes.

Will you start to dream again?

The Invitation

Dancing with Destiny: Quotes from the Invitaion
You shall no longer be termed Forsaken, nor … Desolate… for the LORD delights in you… so shall your God rejoice over you. (from Isaiah 62:4-5)

God is calling for His Bride—for you—calling you to step into the journey of a lifetime with your Bridegroom King. In His hand is a long-stemmed red rose, and He offers it to you with an invitation. Joyfully He says, “Let’s tango!”

Dancing is the epitome of partnership. It involves respect, dignity and strength. It takes courage to follow your heart and to let your inhibitions go. It shows who is willing to be vulnerable and grow as a partner and who is not.
Will you take His hand and dance all night? Or will you stand aloof and watch others grow in their journeys?

Can you picture it? The Bridegroom extending His hand to the Bride - inviting her onto the dance floor for that special dance? It's the dance of a lifetime! Don't shrink back - yes, it is YOU He is inviting to dance with HIM.
It is risky. You know you could look foolish. He is utterly wild yet utterly safe at the
same time. He knows your dreams! He wants to share them with you. He wants
you to know love such as you have never known.
TRUST HIM! You are safer with Jesus than you have ever been in your whole life. He longs to share His heart with you. He longs to show you ALL that He has planned. He is excited about your future!! Can't seem to dream - follow His dream for you! It's an adventure you don't want to miss!

You are not just a dreamer and lover, you are a warrior! It becomes the dance of a warrior, something like King David’s dance when the Ark of the Covenant was being returned to Jerusalem. He was not worried about being dignified. He was a warrior celebrating victory, and he displayed his joy with leaping and ecstatic whirling. The Bible tells us that his wife Michal, however, watched with judgmental eyes. She was not willing to give herself to such love and abandonment of her principles. And what hap­pened? David’s exuberance pleased the Lord, and Michal’s critical heart led to the loss of her destiny. She, who could have borne kings, was forever barren.

I've heard many speak on this portion of scripture - even a song - "I WILL be even more undignifyed than this"!! Can you hear it? We know for sure that David was a warrior, no question. Imagine it - the KING dancing in the street before the Ark of the Covenant as it moved towards Jerusalem. Quite a sight! But the Bible says that the Lord was pleased with his expression of worship that day. Maybe not in what he was doing, but God looks at the heart (always!) and He saw David's passion as he worshipped. He also saw Michal's heart - her judgemental eyes. She was critical of David's passion for God. As a result she was left barren. How sad! God is jealous for our love and worship. No we don't all have to dance in the street for God to be pleased with our worship, but He is longing for us to worship Him in the same spirit of freedom as David had - sold-out passion before His Redeemer.

It is a fascinating journey. He is so fun and full of life, you want more of Him. You love the partnership of the Bride with the Bridegroom King. Catching just one glimpse of His eye gives you the courage to follow your heart.

Listen for His invitation. He is calling for you to join Him.

“Come with Me, My be­loved. Your destiny, your journey, will surpass your wildest dreams if you follow Me.” Will you stay close to His heart and learn to dream, to love and to war? Will you let Him show you the steps of your journey?

Will you dance with destiny?

Selah Y

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Backing into the Future

Dancing with Destiny: Quotes from the Foreword by Dutch Sheets

Do we really have a destiny from God? Absolutely. And though He has chosen not to share all of it with us up front—the Hebrew word achariyth conveys the concept of backing into the future, like a person rowing a boat—rest assured God has wonderful plans for you, plans for good, not evil (see Jeremiah 29:11).
I really like this parallel. When you row, you are facing “backwards” in order to go forward. Sounds opposite to what actually works. Isn’t that just like God – doing it HIS way is opposite to YOUR way.

While pondering this quote, I got this picture:

God has planned everything for your journey. He extends an invitation to you to launch out.
It looks simple enough. With a little practice, you learn how to get around – going out a little further each time. Soon you are quite comfortable with the oars and you glide across the water with ease.

With your new found confidence, you have convinced yourseIf, I can take care of myself. I will venture out and explore the land. At first, all goes well; however without a map to give you directions, you are soon lost. Not knowing where to go, you pull up onto the shore and cry out, Oh God. Help me find my way back home.

Of course, He will. He ALWAYS hears our cries to Him. He has promised to NEVER leave us or forsake us. He KEEPS His promises. He picks you up and returns you safely home. You learn to read His directions and ask for His guidance.
How quickly we forget past difficulties in times of peace. Self-confidence rises up again and you dream of launching out again. This time you head for deep waters. Again you convince yourself, I am more mature now. I can handle the challenge. It will be fine. I deserve some excitement!!

I will launch out into the deep and explore on my own. I can do it! The waters change. The farther away from the safety of the shore, the rougher the waters get. You never had to deal with waves like these while inshore.
The thrill is exhilarating!

WOW. It’s the ride of a lifetime and you have accomplished it on your own merit!! You are so proud of your success. But there is a rude awakening coming.

You have ventured into uncharted waters. In your enthusiasm, you have traveled beyond the scope of your map. Unprepared for the magnitude of what you are now facing, you become shipwrecked.

How did you end up in this position again? Why didn’t you ask for assistance before you went blindly into uncharted waters? How can you explain this mess that is completely a direct consequence of your actions? Will God still answer your cry for help? Will He still rescue you or will He punish you for your foolish choices?

You ponder for a long time as you stand on the shore – desperately wishing you weren’t in this dilemma, but knowing there is no one to transfer the blame to. You have the same choice to make that we all face every day: Do I try to continue in your own strength and somehow “make it right” OR do I cry out to God for mercy, ask for His forgiveness, and allow Him to guide you back to your original path to continue His journey for you.

He will answer you. He LONGS to restore you to the path He has planned for you. Why shouldn’t He? It is tailored just for you!! He offers you another chance – another invitation to continue the journey. This time you are wiser. You ask HIM to come along with you.

You are back in the row boat, but here is the difference. As you face backwards, you are looking directly into Jesus’ face as He travels with you. He gives you direction and you will always reach His destination for you.

Here’s the bonus. HE sees what is coming and gently guides you to avoid the dangers along the way. Your focus is on HIM and not the circumstances ahead. Like Peter, you can be distracted when the storms come, start to panic and act on your own. With your focus on Him, He’ll guide you through in calm waters or storms. Trust Him. HE knows your destination!!

Selah Y

Dance of the Warrior

Dancing with Destiny: Quotes from the Forword by Dutch Sheets

The Greek word for “destiny,” proorizo, is filled with hope. The root, horizo, gives us our word ho­rizon; the prefix means “in advance.” God has planned a future for us, determining our horizons before we were ever born (see Psalm 139: 13-16). This does not mean everything that occurs in our lives is preplanned by God; He does not cause us to sin, fail or experience devastation just so He can give us a testimony. But it does mean He has a finish line in mind for us and a preordained way of recovery when forces try to derail us.

Two pieces of our destiny are worshiping and warring - our dance with destiny is “the dance of a warrior.” We are worshiping warriors, loving liberators. We are really freedom fighters on a mission of mercy. You will become a greater warrior—one of “God's Bravehearts.” You were made for war. He did not intend for you to sit by while others won the victor’s crown. God has made you more than a conqueror!

WOW. These quotes speak so much to me. It makes me want to jump to the end of the book!! Then I realized: Isn’t that what we often want to do? Skip the process and claim the reward!!

So often we want what others have, but we don’t consider how they got there. We are such a microwave-minded society. We want it and we want it NOW!! I like what John Maxwell said in one of his teaching tapes. A young man came up to him at a conference and said, “I want to have what you have and do what you do.” His answer to him was something like this: If you want to have what I have, are you willing to do what I did in order to have it?”

There is a process. We often want to just skip to the reward. Remember the children’s story of the little hen making bread and no one wanted to help her in all of the steps along the way to make the bread? BUT they all showed up at the end to help her eat it!!! So true.

God is not like some genie who wants to grant us three wishes and all our heart’s desires. He is more interested in the journey on the way to our destination. That’s our destiny. How we fulfill it becomes out testimony. I choose to walk it with Him – to accept His invitation to join Him in the Dance of my Destiny.

Worshiping Warriors, loving liberators, freedom fighters on a mission of mercy – becoming one of “God’s Bravehearts” – more than a conqueror!! Are you ready?
Selah Y