Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Barbie is away this week, but will return on Monday. Feel free to read past blog posts on her journey of faith.

Friday, July 24, 2009

The Faith Radar Screen

Much was made about the "big switch" that occurred in television in June. Stations went from broadcasting on an analog channel to doing it on a digital channel. Millions of dollars was spent on educating the public as to how television reception would change forever. In order to receive television broadcasts now if you aren't already on cable or satellite, you must have a converter box. If the box isn't hooked up properly or isn't turned on, you can't watch tv anymore.

The story of the crippled man in Acts 14 is a classic example of faith. Paul was busy preaching the gospel and a man who had been crippled since birth was listening closely. Paul was able to see this man had faith in Acts 14:8, "Paul perceived that he had faith to be healed and said with a loud voice, 'Stand upright on thy feet'. And he leaped and walked." That man could have thought, "Well, Mr. Know-It-All, if I could stand up on my feet, I wouldn't be sitting here right now!" Reasoning and unbelief will keep you out of God's best blessings.

Unbelief can be disguised as wisdom. Your intelligent mind may see no mighty work. Have you ever heard someone say, "Well, the intelligent thing to do is..." or "Have you lost your mind?"

Some people are afraid to "lose their minds" and let go of their own thinking and opinions. They are afraid to let go and let God have His way.

I imagine God has a faith radar screen. He's looking for people to get in faith by believing what He says in His Word, walking by faith, praising Him, thanking Him and holding fast to their faith confession. But faith has to land before it gets results. Romans 10:17 says, "So then faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the Word of God." At times, people who appear on God's "faith radar screen" come in for a landing. Then all of a sudden, something happens. Doubt comes in, feelings well up, we begin to think intelligently about the situation and fear sets in. When this happens, you get out of the spirit and into your thinking, reasoning and into your sight mode. You go off the radar screen. Some people stay on the radar screen for several days at a time, but they drop off as soon as Satan attacks them. God wants you to stay on the screen.

You get on God's faith radar screen by speaking your faith. Simply by speaking your faith, you get back on the radar screen. He is still looking for faith today, but not yesterday's faith. God is asking you and me, "What do you believe today? What are you declaring today? What are you acting on today?"

Monday, July 20, 2009

Sink Or Swim

I wrote last Friday about my lack of patience--something I'm trying to work on. When it comes to trusting God's hand, impatience can often be a sign of your lack of faith. When we get impatient because we don't see God working or moving in our circumstances, we quickly forget how He has brought us out of prior situations.

You remember the story of Peter's walk on the water. Matthew 14:25-33 says, "During the fourth watch of the night, Jesus went out to them, walking on the lake. When the disciples saw him walking on the lake, they were terrified. 'It's a ghost,' they said, and cried out in fear. But Jesus immediately said to them, 'Take courage! It is I. Don't be afraid.' 'Lord, if it's you,' Peter said, 'tell me to come to you.' 'Come,' he said. Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, 'Lord, save me!' Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. 'You of little faith,' he said, 'why did you doubt?' And when they climbed into the boat, the wind died down. Then those who were in the boat worshiped him saying, 'Truly you are the Son of God,'"

Could Jesus have picked a worse time to walk on the water? For goodness sake, it was 3 o'clock in the morning and the winds were blowing and waves were lapping! When Peter asked in verse "Lord, is that You? I want to come to you." Jesus just gave Peter one word: "Come". He didn't encourage Peter like you have to do a puppy and say, "Come on, Peter, you can do it!" Some may criticize Peter for sinking because of his lack of faith, but they quickly forget that he was the only one who got out of the boat!

It seems to me that God always picks a time when it looks like you're at your weakest and you can't do it. Peter could have negotiated, "God, can we try this again tomorrow? At least when the storm is over?"

We always have suggestions for God when His work doesn't fit into our time frame. But God picks that particular time to show how faith in Him will work anytime, anywhere and for anyone who will believe Him.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Being Impatient

I know I'm not alone when I say this, but I'm a busy person. I operate daily by the clock. Even my job has a director in my ear counting me down to the second. I've got 3 minutes every night to tell the public everything they need to know about the weather for the next 7 days. The show goes on with or without me, so being tardy isn't an option. I can fit 10,000 things in my day and wonder why everybody else can't do the same thing. After all, if I can do it with my commitments, surely everyone else can, right? My schedule is packed and I don't have time to waste. I have a problem.

One night this week as my husband and I were giving the children their baths, I was rushing around the house bathing Will with one hand and folding towels with the other. One down, one to go. Quick, let's get him out of the tub and throw Gracie in. Time's a wasting! While Gracie was bathing, I unloaded dishes from the dishwasher and walked into my bathroom only find my husband on the floor with his head leaning on the side of the tub, watching Lilly Faith play in the bath water, both of them giggling. In my mind I was thinking, "Why are you just sitting there? Grab that kid out of the water! I'm sure she's clean now!" I looked at him and asked what he was doing. "Oh, just watching her have fun in the tub. You never know how much fun bath water can be til you watch a little one," he said with a smile. Immediately, the Holy Spirit convicted me. "You have a problem with patience. You're too busy trying to set a world's record at bathing your kids and you're missing some sweet moments."

It seems as if you and I are always waiting on God to answer, waiting on Him to move on our behalf or to work something out. Psalm 70:1 says, "Haste, O God, to save me. O Lord, come quickly to help me." As you can see, even David had a problem with patience. So, is it okay to ask God to hurry?

God wants us to be patient and accept His timing, but he understands and is pleased when we call to Him for help. Our need for God to help us and to help us right now demonstrates our vulnerability and God's strength. 2 Peter 3:9 says, "The Lord is not slow in keeping his promises, as some understand slowness."

And when it comes to my life, God doesn't operate on "Barbie Central Time". For the One who created time knows how to operate it. And that's time no man-made watch can understand.

Monday, July 13, 2009

My Fasting Journey

I had the brief chance to go home over the weekend for a family reunion. Here is a picture of me, my older sister Rhonda, my mother and her 91 year-old mother (my grandmother).My fasting journey continues. I've committed to prayer and fasting a couple of days a week and am seeing spiritual results. I've kept up with my fasting journal in writing the things I want God to reveal to me through this--answers I need in knowing what to do in certain situations I'm facing. In testing God, I am most certainly hearing Him speak and getting answers in ways I never thought possible. Some have asked why this means to seeking God's will?

Fasting denies me what is common, normal and necessary--food--for a period of time so that my mind will become sharp, my heart tender and my spirit receptive to what God is telling me to do. God promises to fill the void that the absence of food creates and He will pour out His blessings in a way food never will. This take humbling myself in God's presence and taking direction from His heart. In doing so, I will have the strength, the desire, courage and confidence to face the future boldly, without being afraid and without compromise.

I don't want God to be a silent God in my life, nor do a I want to snore through the most exciting time in my life. Would you?

Friday, July 10, 2009

Viewer Comments

I know..its been a while since I've shared viewer emails and comments. Someone asked me the other day if I still got mean emails from viewers. I chuckled and told them how it had really quietened down and I believed my critics were away on summer vacation, although the "when you are going to lose the baby weight?" and the "are you pregnant AGAIN?" emails have totally ceased. Now that I've lost 50+ pounds, they have to find something else to pick me apart on.

Barbie, I love your newscast, so please don't take this the wrong way, but, I would highly suggest you get a new hair-do. Yours looks like its from the 1950's. It is very big hair. People at my office make jokes about it. Just a suggestion. Signed, Charles Jackson

I can't help that not everyone is a 'child of the 80s' and doesn't appreciate 'big hair', but I will admit that even I have toned it down a bit lately. My hair is getting longer and when it get longer, it gets heavier, so it's not as BIG as it was before. But how sad that his co-workers make jokes about my hair and don't have anything else to do (like work) at work!

And I had this anonymous viewer comment on my voice mail last night:

"That yellow blouse you're wearing tonight has the same crease in the same place as it did last Wednesday night when you wore it. The only thing thats different is your buttons are alittle lower on the sleeve this time around. But it just doesn't look professional!"

I had to wonder who this lady was watching last Wednesday wearing a yellow blouse because it wasn't me. I was at home with the swine flu.

You know the weather is boring to listen to when viewers are discussing your big hair in the workplace and counting the creases in your blouse!

Monday, July 6, 2009

The Land of the Living

A friend and I were talking the other day about how some people think Christians are to live piously--that we should live as poor as church mice, be somber and serious, and never have fun. Then I ran across Psalm 27:13 which David wrote, "I am still confident in this; I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord, be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord."

David certainly had his share of ups and downs; good and bad decisions. Throughout it all, though, he knew he was dearly loved by God. But he knew there were blessings in this life for him, on earth, and he wouldn't have to wait and receive everything in eternity.

I don't necessarily believe blessings come in the form of monetary things and it is unfortunate that many people think that. But I believe God has plenty for us here IF we choose to do the second part of the verse and "wait for the Lord."

Friday, July 3, 2009

Oh, What A Week!

No, I haven't dropped off the face of the earth, although I felt like I had earlier in the week!

Last Sunday was a big day for us as Gracie was baptized. She was so excited. I was afraid if she were given the opportunity, she was going to testify to the congregation once she got in the baptistry! You can see her excitement here just before she made her way into the water.

She participated in her first Lord's Supper that night and even kept her communion cup as a memoir.

By midday on Monday, I couldn't move. When I say I couldn't move, I literally couldn't move. I didn't know what had come over me, but my legs wouldn't work, my head was splitting in two, and every muscle and fiber in my body was screaming. Even my hair was hurting. A trip to the doctor revealed a temperature of 102.9 and I was immediately quarantined in the clinic. Yes, I've been one of "those" cases this week--swine flu. I can honestly tell you this flu strain is worse than the typical flu you may have had in the past. When the doctor started discussing the fatality rate with this flu, I knew it was serious.

I've been on several medications including tamiflu, which has been wonderful. The doctors also started all three children and my husband on tamiflu, just in case. Since I already have it, the chances are higher than everyone in our house has already been infected, so they wanted to go ahead and get everyone on the regimen.

Meantime, Gracie turned 6 years old on Wednesday. I wasn't able to attend her party and stayed isolated as best as I could with three little ones. My nanny and husband swapped off childcare duties. And since I couldn't go to the store and get Gracie a cake, my nanny stepped up to the plate and made a delicious ice cream cake for the celebration. Through it all, Gracie has been understanding but the kids certainly don't appreciate taking their medicinal doses every day!

So when the swine flu vaccine comes out, you can bet I'll be first in line to get mine. And I highly suggest you do the same!