Don’t Slip…

At times I’m amazed at how easy it is for me to give place to complaining; especially if aggravations are consistent.

But when I think about it, aggravation was consistently present with Jesus in the form of Judas, wasn’t it?  That guy was a thief and a liar even though he lived and “walked” with Jesus every day; yet, God loved him.  God didn’t slip into complaints regarding him even though every word would have been justified.

Jesus knew that it wasn’t about that.  Neither is life in God for us.  Living Godly is about living righteously… that means allowing ourselves to be transformed into the image of Christ Who Himself is the exact image of God, according to scripture.

Ever think about that?  I have and, whenever I do, it adds amazing grips to my feet.  Humility increases the strength of our foundation in God, y’all; it allows us to yield to God’s desires to cleanse all blemishes to our personality. Saying yes to God’s desires will enable us to “love” continually, even when aggravations are present, and it’ll keep us from slipping into complaint.

SHAMMA

Continue to Love? Just Being Real…

Either people love me or hate me; there’s rarely any middle ground.  What a raw deal…

Even though I’d say the majority of those I’ve met in life have loved me, the ire and jealousy and hatred from those who haven’t is often too much to take… until I listen to Jesus.

“Persevere in love,” He says… He always says.  Wow.  To me, there’s nothing in the world that’s more easily said than done.  At times I wish words like “perseverance” and “endurance” did not exist – until it comes to me being the recipient of such forbearance and benefit.  Just being real here.

At times I make people sick and, believe me, they make me just as ill.  It’s usually then that Christ puts His fragrant forehead to mine and says, “Persevere… persevere in love, the way I did for you.”

There’s the kicker; the way He did for me.  It makes me want to slap myself until my ears bleed.  I’m just as human as anyone else when it comes to not wanting to be bothered.  It comes down to choice with me – personal, critical, all-important, and extremely difficult – just like it does anyone else.  I’m in no ivory tower…

Beating my head against the wall only yields a headache.

Whatcha gonna do, Sharon?  You gonna love like Jesus says, or you gonna run and rebel?  Sucks, doesn’t it?  BOB’S YOUR UNCLE, IT DOES!  Especially when the flesh has got a laundry list of offenses it keeps wanting addressed.  Giving it all over to Jesus is THE LAST THING the flesh wants me to do!  The flesh wants to bitch – plain and simple.

Yes, you heard me.  Just being real. (Jesus knows I’ve said “bitch” before…)

Well, I want to see the people who hate me spanked and spanked hard… then I can consider loving them unconditionally. Punishment!  I want punishment… until it comes to me.  Sometimes I’m worthy of hate, but I don’t talk about that.  Looking at myself honestly is often the only thing that saves me; only Holy Spirit can facilitate that.

I have all His attributes within me because I’m Abba’s child.  It may be close to impossible to believe at times, but I am, and it’s the most amazing part of being me… not being “me” at all, but tossing me aside because Christ lives in me.  That’s the only way I can keep loving the unlovable – starting with me.  Okay, so I’ve chosen.  Once again, I’ve jumped up and down and frothed at the mouth while the flesh in me flailed wildly… and then I made my choice to crack the flesh in the head and shove it into the closet and lock the door.  Walking away from it is often the hardest part.

So I jump into the arms of Jesus so I can be okay.  He doesn’t mind if I cry or call the flesh names.  He just wants me to obey so that I can be saved from the ravages satan has in store for me if I take that stupid, dangling, chocolate-dipped carrot of the flesh and hate the sinners instead of their sin.  What a punk…

So I jump into the arms of Jesus… so that I can be okay.  There, it doesn’t matter whether I am loved or hated by others. All that matters is that I obey and agree to continue to love, as He has loved me.  That’s the conclusion of the matter.

Dear Lord Jesus, with You, I agree.  I will soak Your shoulders with my tears as I continue to love, so You can cover me with Your Blood and keep my flesh in a sound-proof room while we see this thing called life to its finish.  With You, sweet Savior and Lord… I agree.

Finally and Faithfully,

Your SHAMMA

(And P.S., Jesus – Thanks for letting me be real!) 

Starting over “older” is fine, right?

Starting over “older” is okay.  It really is.  It’s fine.

Ever say stuff like that to yourself but not believe a word of it?  So have I.  But the real truth is that, as I grow older, (and I’m not Methuselah by anyyy means!) I realize starting over really is okay.  We’re better equipped as we move along in life and in the wisdom of God.

I look back on a life lived largely for Jesus, but also one that once bent and swayed with the wind like a reed – and once bobbed and bowed like a rudderless shipDSCN0379 on sin’s choppy ocean.  Life’s held a lot for me, and it’s got a lot more in store.  The difference is I’m not approaching the future in sin or shame or bondage or with overwhelmingly heavy, rotting carcasses of the past clinging to my soul. That’s the Lord’s doing.

New beginnings, by God’s definition, are just that.  The old has gone – the new has come.

Yeah, the flesh is still here so I’ve determined to submit myself to Jesus in even stronger ways… but I’ve got Holy Spirit and years of living a Godly, submitted life to uphold me.  I always need upholding because the flesh always craps out.  The flesh is weak, just like Jesus said; it never helps out, it always complains and whines and criticizes.  The flesh stinks, and that’s all it ever will do.

HOWEVER…  (it’s high time for a “however” here, Sharon)

Christ Jesus has been putting my flesh in a sound-proof room for nearly 40 years now… straight-jacketed and helpless, unless I give into its chiding and grousing and selfish irritations.  Yuck! Sharon, stop that!

Let “Shamma” take over and have the upper hand… let the spirit-man named “Obedient One” follow the Lord to safer shores and even coasts and sweet-smelling seas in righteousness, peace, and JOY in Holy Ghost.  Let the old be gone so the new can fully come!  Start the new year with a SHOUT…!

Starting over “older” is free and easy as long as Christ is involved.  With Jesus the Christ – truly – it’s okay… it’s fine.

SHAMMA