karigraceplace – A Lighthouse

How do you change your world? One word at a time, one heart at a time

Archive for the month “April, 2013”

Black Sheep

I learned just recently that sheep won’t drink from fast-moving waters; they fear falling in. How many times do I fear what Papa is doing in my life, and rather than take the plunge and walk on water, or sink as the case may be, do nothing? If you’ve ever done any research on sheep, you will know that not only are they very, very stupid and stubborn but they’re also skittish? No wonder Papa calls me one! Yep, I’ve been known to be very stupid. And stubborn. Even skittish at times. When I know that I know He is telling me to do something, but I go by feelings rather than faith. Not you, of course. You’d never do that, right? I’m only sharing all this because Psalm 23 took on a whole new dimension for me after learning this.
When my two angels were small I made a decision they didn’t care for too much. One that changed my life but didn’t seem to have much effect on theirs. What decision? you may ask. Justifiably so. To be serious about my faith. To put actions to that faith. Which also affected what I found no longer acceptable. Like PG13 movies. Cusswords. Attitude. So I instituted new rules in the house. One great thing about getting to be a single mom is that I was thrust into the place of headship so I chose to embrace the role. Another thing I purposed in my heart to do was speak God’s Word over my children. Which they didn’t appreciate very much, but it didn’t change my choice. Both of my children are still not walking in that revelation yet but they will. Eventually. If Papa can change my heart He can change anybody! My two angels may have deliberately forgotten a lot of what I taught them but I guarantee, some place deep inside, they know Psalm 23. I spoke it over them every night for years as I knelt by their bedside and kissed them goodnight. I believe one word is all it takes. We never know what one word can do, to destroy or build up another’s life. I must admit I respect but don’t happen to agree with Saint Anthony – I believe there is no such thing as a lost cause. Ask me how I know this. I was one. A huge one. I pray today finds you encouraged to keep believing for the improbable and attempting the impossible. We serve a mighty God Who can do mighty things with a submitted vessel. I’ve gone from black sheep to pure and holy and righteous, because of His Son. Many gave up on me. But the Lover of my soul, the Healer of my heart, never did. He never will.
Kari, the totally turncoat
original content, copyright © 2000, karigraceplace.com, all rights reserved
ps. did I mention that goats will eat anything? Just a thought…

Of Mice and Men

I’m so thankful for Lamentations. Not many people can say that, or even will, but I am. Especially chapter 3, verses 22 and 23. That’s where Papa promised that His mercies are new every single morning. And like my pastor says, if they’re continually new then we must continually need them! Well, maybe not you, but definitely me.
To quote Steinbeck, even the best-laid plans can oft go awry. I’m sure you’ve never had this problem but I’m afraid my plans for the day very often go awry!! I wake up with the best intentions but by day’s end it’s a whole ‘nother story. I want to walk in love. I plan to accomplish every single thing on my to-do list. I am determined to spend time in prayer and His Word. But like I said, small bumps in the road and sometimes great big all-out snafus have a habit of happening in my life. So I’ve made a fresh dedication to a new year’s resolution perhaps a little late in life; to do my best on any given day, and trust Papa to do the rest.
A wise man by the name of James Leman once said there is no excuse for abuse, an idea I’ve thought about often. I have no business beating someone else up, yes, yet I forget the same rule applies to me. I’m doing better with the former but I still fail miserably in the latter. A friend once told me satan doesn’t need any help – I beat myself up just fine without his help. Maybe I’m just a frustrated perfectionist and I because I want to give the Saver of my soul my absolute best I’m never quite satisfied, I don’t know; I do know I’m often harder on myself than I should be. Then I remember . And I thank Him that I’m finally learning to walk in my middle name. With myself, and others. I pray this day you’re learning the same lesson.

Kari, the mercy-liver grace-giver
original content, copyright © 2000, karigraceplace.com, all rights reserved

Stuck in a Ditch

Few people seem to be what Kerry Shook calls “ditching second-hand religion for a first-hand faith”. In fact, truth be told I see a whole lot more religion and legalism than relationship and passion when it comes to a loving heavenly Father that died to save the souls of His people. In the words of Ted Dekker, “in times past our history has been retold using simple metaphors. Light coming in darkness; a land called Narnia set free by a lion; a ring that would enslave the hearts of all.”
I’ve always been a reader and I seem to learn more from fiction than I do from non-fiction. Take a for-instance – Ted’s novels Black, White, Red, and Green. In the front of the last book he encourages you to “dive deep into the world of colors”, calling the books ‘the Circle Series’, meaning it doesn’t really matter which book you start with because although the books are a series they can also stand alone; the way they’re written, any one you start with will make sense within the series yet will not detract from any other.
I have to admit the very first one he wrote, Black, just happened to be my favorite. It’s not warm fuzzy reading though, it’s pure heart-pounding action. To me, as I was reading, it became clear to me the book was all about man’s search for significance. The oldest story known to man. Looking to ourselves for the meaning of life. Black tells the story of two worlds, and the fall of one of them. Which has much biblical significance for me. The concept is nothing new. Ephesians 6 tells us that there indeed are two worlds – the natural and the spiritual – and we all know about Adam in the garden of Eden. As I writer myself I so appreciate those who have the gift to take biblical principles and make them applicable and understandable to the unlearned. Just like Jesus, who used everyday scenarios to teach kingdom principles for daily life. Our Lord and Savior was so out of the box in His thinking and actions, a freedom I crave in my own life. Stories like this give me a new take on an old theme, helping me experience afresh the beauty and pain of truths I sometimes find myself way too familiar with, and therefore take for granted. Today I highly encourage you to rethink foundational truths in a whole new way. Making sure you’re totally in line with scripture, yes, but seeing them with fresh eyes. It will ignite a passion in your heart for the Lover of your soul, I promise. And you won’t be able to keep it to yourself.
Kari, the ditch remover
original content, copyright © 2000, karigraceplace.com, all rights reserved

Take No Prisoners

One of my fave verses eva is Zechariah 9.12, especially in the Amplified bible. I highly encourage you to check it out some time. Basically, it calls us, “prisoners of hope”. I decided a long time ago that if I’m gonna be a prisoner, I’d rather choose to be bound by hope than by sin.
I don’t know if you’ve noticed but it seems hope is a thing sadly lacking in our world today but we, as Christians, are supposed to be “abounding” in hope, according to Romans 15.13. How easy it is to lose, and not quite as easy to share with others or even hold on to ourselves.
Like a kid at Christmas, we’re supposed to live life in joyful expectation of good, and there are many verses to support this train of thought. It really is all about focus. How are we every gonna change if we keep repeating the same choices? God tells us again and again to overcome evil with good. If we want good in our life then logically, we have to start thinking good and saying good and even doing good before it will ever manifest in our lives. Joyce says that any time you want something, start giving it away. Then follow that action by what she calls “pray, and say”. Which I know from experience will produce show and tell. I’m so thankful Papa is working in my life no matter what it looks like or feels like. Joyce also says that when we see the least and feel the least He’s often doing the most! I’m so thankful God is good at doing suddenlys in my life. He works on ordinary days in extraordinary ways. I for one am expecting my “suddenly”. In any area of my life that He chooses. Are you?

Kari, the proud prisoner
original content, copyright © 2000, karigraceplace.com, all rights reserved

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