How He Guides…

Hello friends,

I hope you’re all doing well. I wanted to come share an awesome message with you all. I decided that since I haven’t written anything in a little while, the least I could do is come share something great.

I listen, read and learn from a wide variety of Christian pastors and ministers. I study everything from A. W. Tozer to Ellen G. White to Francis Chan to Dr. Charles Stanley. I love learning about what different people have to say about God. Lately, I’ve been listening to a lot of messages from Timothy Keller who currently serves as the head pastor for the Redeemer Presbyterian Church in New York City. Keller is a gifted teacher that I love to listen to because of his focus on historical context which really helps me because I LOVE all things history related. Historical context is huge for me.

Anyway, Keller has a sermon called “Your Plans: God’s Plans” that completely rocked my world. I’ve always had a hard time understanding how my choices effect my life, how God guides me, why He doesn’t just drop arrows in my path and why gaining wisdom is important if He works everything together for my good. I mean honestly, it’s hard to comprehend the idea that God knows the end from the beginning AND my choices effect my future. Keller has explained this so well and I know that this message can really help others understand these things too. Now just to warn you all, I’ve listened to this message at least 10 times. If you don’t get everything after the first time you listen, don’t feel crazy if you have to play it again. Some of the concepts are very heavy but they are really not as complicated as they seem.

If you choose to listen to this message, please comment and let me know. I want to know if anyone else is as blown away by the insight and clarity received from the message. On another note, I’m starting a new practicum tomorrow for my education program so please keep me in your prayers. I appreciate them so much!

Thanks for reading,

Brittany

23 Candles

Hello friends,

It’s been a while since I’ve blogged but I wanted to share some thoughts on being in getting older and being in God’s will. In case you couldn’t tell based on the title if you didn’t already know, today is my birthday! I am now 23 years old and I’m thankful to see this day. For the weeks leading up to my birthday, many thoughts lingered in my head about my soon-coming birthday.

Is 23 even really an important year?

Should I celebrate?

What makes 23 different from 22?

The more I thought about these things, the more I realized how ridiculous I was being. It’s not that age 23 itself is guaranteed to be monumental, but that God had done so much for me and through me at age 22 so I know that this will be a phenomenal year.

Last year, I went through many changes in my family, education, walk with the Lord and every other aspect one can think of. I also had submission issues. I had done a really great job of calling God my Provider, my Healer, my Restorer but a really poor job of treating Him as Lord, Master and Guide. I wasn’t very interested in submitting to Him deeply yet and it showed in my life. But none of that mattered because He is jealous for me. Jealousy is a strong emotion that doesn’t take “no” for an answer and God made it very clear that He wanted me to himself. He made this clear through one of the most heartbreaking experiences I’ve ever gone through, but it is a sheer blessing that He loves us disciplines us, considers our soul first and feelings later.

For I am jealous over you with godly jealousy: for I have espoused you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ. -2 Corinthians 11:2 KJV

My son, despise not the chastening of the Lord; neither be weary of his correction: For whom the Lord loveth he correcteth; even as a father the son in whom he delighteth. -Proverbs 3:11, 12 KJV

As a result of this experience of God shaking up my life, I am in a place that I would not trade for anything. I have made so many bad decisions, wrong turns and honestly, done some really stupid things but the amazing thing about God is that He can make all things work together for our good. His sovereignty blows my mind because I know that before I do anything, He knows how things will end. Nothing catches Him by surprise so even when I go through bad things either as an attack of satan or as a result of my own bad decision, He knows that the experience can be used for my good and for His glory. How amazing is that? Also, He has poured into my life during these past few months. I’ve been blessed with a community of Godly friends, an amazing best friend who loves God dearly and even a phenomenal small group Bible study that I started last night. There is nothing that brings sheer joy, peace, contentment and gratefulness like knowing that you are where God wants you, living for Him and staying in His will. It’s hard going through life if you’re bucking up against His plans for you, and I’m thankful that I don’t even try to anymore.

Turning 23 means so much to me because this is the year that I began walking with God. For the first time in my entire life, God hasn’t been an afterthought or just this scary figure that I had to keep happy. He is my Beloved, my Father, my Lord and my Master yet also my Bridegroom, Provider, Protector, Best Friend and Guide. At this age, nothing matters more to me than living for Christ and making Him known so that others can share in this blessed assurance that I have. The reality is too, my life is not perfect. I have lots of struggles and challenges to work through every single day across many areas of my life. But knowing that God and I are walking together and that God will work everything for my good makes me the happiest girl alive. After knowing that God wasn’t pleased with me before, there’s no gift greater than to know that we are back in a good place.

If you’re in a rough place with God right now, know that He is jealous for you and that He wants to know you intimately. There’s nothing that should come before Him and that if He needs to move things around to have access to you, He might do that but that just shows His amazing love even more.

This is a brief post but thanks for reading and please send up a birthday prayer for me! Prayers are one of my favorite gifts. 🙂

A little older and a (hopefully) a little wiser,

Brittany

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