There is More to Eve Than Meets the Eye

Ever since I was a small child I was taught the story of Eve. I was taught how she was deceived by the devil, how she talked Adam into eating the fruit and how because of her they were thrown out of the Garden.

But since those days, I have studied on my own. I found out thing about Eve that I was never taught. Life’s lessons that were put in the background. It hit me as I was watching all of the so feminist spouting their rhetoric about equal rights, blah, blah, blah. How women need to be empowered.

I went back to Eve. When we sit down and really look at Eve, we find that women have been empowered since the beginning of time. They have been leaders, they have been powerful. Let’s just start with Eve.

Yes, Eve sinned that is a given. Yes, she was deceived, that is a given. However, there are two thing that get lost in the translation. While she was deceived and while she did sin. She led a man. She led Adam into joining her in that sin. Adam was supposed to be the stronger one. The wiser one. The one who would resist. However, he fell under Eve’s spell and followed her into that sin. That shows power on  Eve’s part. Yes, it was wrong. But on the flip side of that same coin women can lead men into taking paths of greatness. They can lead men into making the right decisions. So when I hear women say they need to be empowered I scoff at their ignorance. They are already empowered they have not yet learned how to use it the proper way. Sure they still lead men, but the consequences of that path are not what they should be.

Now, let us look at the rest of the story. God told Adam he would live by the sweat of his brow. In other words he would have to work hard in order to make a living for himself and his family. While on the surface that might not appear to be a big deal it is. Adam should have said no. He should have showed the woman that by sinning they would be separated from their Creator. He did not. He followed. Gen 3:17 ”

17Then to Adam He said, “Because you have heeded the voice of your wife, and have eaten from the tree of which I commanded you, saying, ‘You shall not eat of it’:
“Cursed is the ground for your sake;
In toil you shall eat of it
All the days of your life.
18Both thorns and thistles it shall bring forth for you,
And you shall eat the herb of the field.
19In the sweat of your face you shall eat bread
Till you return to the ground,
For out of it you were taken;
For dust you are,
And to dust you shall return.”

Now let’s look at Eve. While she was punished for her sin in that she would bear children in pain and sorrow, the promise of salvation came through her. God promised that he would strike the devil’s head through the woman. Which he did. God did not give the promise to Adam, he gave it to Eve when he cursed the Devil. Gen 3: 13-15

13And the Lord God said to the woman, “What is this you have done?”
The woman said, “The serpent deceived me, and I ate.”
14So the Lord God said to the serpent:
“Because you have done this,
You are cursed more than all cattle,
And more than every beast of the field;
On your belly you shall go,
And you shall eat dust
All the days of your life.
15And I will put enmity
Between you and the woman,
And between your seed and her Seed;
He shall bruise your head,
And you shall bruise His heel.”
 Now back to this day and age. When Women say that we need to be empowered we need to “put men in their place.” I cringe. Both have a place God made it so. Both are a balance and both need each other. Women already have the empowerment. They were given it by God. They have forgotten how to use it for the greater good. They have forgotten how to honor men by helping them and in turn helping themselves.
 As women let us return to the understanding that we are already empowered, we just have to stop trying to be men and embrace ourselves as women and use the tools God gave us. Let us go back to treating men with respect they deserve as men and encourage them to be the best they can be. In that light not only will they be successful we will as well.

How We Walk With the Broken Speaker Louder Than How We Sit with the Great

This morning as I was scrolling through my Facebook page, I saw something made me stop in my scrolling and not only read it but soak it in.  “How we sit with the broken speaks louder than how we sit with the great.”

That one sentence speaks volumes. It puts in perspective how Christ walked on this earth. He sat with the broken, he walked with them and he healed them. When asked why he did this, he said that the broken was the reason he came to earth.

The great don’t feel they need healing. They think they have all the answers to the questions already. They understand all, know all and they need nothing. Sadly, this is not true. The broken know they are broken, they are looking for healing. They are looking for a better way. They are so broken the only way they have is up.

As children of God, should we not follow that example? Sure, our human nature wants us to be right up there with the great. They can offer us something. The broken can offer us nothing. We need to reverse that way of thinking. The broken can offer us something. They offer us the mindset of Christ. They offer us the ability to be humble, giving, and kind.

The great on the other hand, many times have to idea how to achieve the above much less put them to use in their lives. Would you rather sit with the Great and feed the broken the crumbs that drop from your table as you soak in every word of the great? Or would you rather walk with the broken to find more than crumbs and learn why and how they became broken then show them a greater way of life?

Would you rather sit with the great and never be challenged or would you walk with the broken and find way to help them on a different path.? Sitting with the great is indeed comfortable, however walking with the broken is challenging and rewarding. It teaches us as we help them.

When we are no longer sojourners on this earth, we will not be known for how many greats we sat with, in fact they probably won’t even show up at our service because they will be too busy. We served our usefulness and when we are gone, we will be replaced. The broken on the other hand will be there to pay their respects and honor our lives. They will be the legacy that lives on to shine as a light for others to follow.

Again, I make this statement, “How We Walk with the Broken, Speaks Louder than How We Sit with the Great.”

Think about how you walk with the Broken. Is it healing and helpful or is it condemning and destructive? Would you rather play it safe and Sit with the Great?

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If You are Not Enough with it- You will Never Be Enough without It

I heard this on a movie I watched for the hundredth time. The movie was called Cool Runnings. The back story is they were the first Bob Sled team from the islands that went to the Winter Olympics.  While they didn’t win a medal that year because the sled broke, and they crashed, they carried the sled across the finish line to finish the race.

In our daily lives, sometimes we think that we are not enough unless we have A,B,C. What we fail to understand is that if we are not enough with A,B, C we will never be enough without it. How many of us say to ourselves, if I only had A, B, C  I would be happy. Or if I had A,B, C I could do this or that. Or if I had A,B or C I would be able to do this or that.

What we need to look toward is that we are already enough without A,B or C. We are enough because this world is not our home. We are only pilgrims on a short journey. Our ultimate goal is to understand that we are enough. We are enough because we are heirs to a kingdom that is not of this world. We have riches beyond all comprehension. We are enough because we are children of the Most High. We are enough because his son gave his life that we might live.

We do not have to wonder if we are going to be enough without it because we are enough with the promise that God has given us. We just have to reach out and receive it.

We just need to keep our eye and hope on the finish line no matter how many times we break or fall down. We are more than enough without A,B or C. The prize is not how much we accumulate. The prize is being with our Father forever. The journey is not how much we gather here on earth, the journey is how we look forward to that which transcends gold or silver. We are enough without it and we are enough if we have it.

As we go through our daily lives let us all understand, We are all enough with it, but we will never be enough without it. The it being  God’s grace, Christ’s sacrifice and the understanding of being with them always.

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The Things We Don’t See are Sometimes the Things That are Most Real

Once again, I was watching a mindless movie and heard a line that stuck in my head. This happens to me quite often. This time the sentence was, “The Things We Don’t see are Sometimes the things that are Most Real.”

Think about that for a moment. We don’t see the wind, and yet it is very real, it can be calming, or it can be destructive. It just depends on the other elements of nature that mixes with the wind. We know the wind is real because we see the effects of its destruction during a storm, we feel the effects of its cooling ability on a warm summer day.

We don’t see love, but we do see the effects of our love. We see it when we feed and clothe the homeless, become a caregiver for someone who is ill, grieve when we have a loss. The effects of our love has the ability to be calming or destructive, depending on the elements it is mixed with. It can be healing, uplifting and supportive or it can become destructive and hurtful.

Faith is another intangible thing that we cannot see but is real. We have faith that the sun will come up on the morrow, that our heart will keep beating without assistance, that our vehicles will start when we crank them. We have faith that we will have employment.

We do not see any of those things, but we know they are real. Taking all of these things into account and understanding that even though we don’t see them, we do see and feel the effects of them in our everyday lives.

Without these intangibles, our lives would be a disaster, we would have no hope. Hope is the basis of faith. “Faith is the substance of things hoped for and the evidence of things not seen.” Heb. 11-1.

Our faith in our God, gives us our hope for his heavenly presence. When we have moments of faltering faith remember this, The things we don’t see are sometimes the things that are most real.

Life is an Occasion, Rise to It

The other day I was mindlessly watching a movie and there was a line from that movie that stuck in my head. The line goes like this, “Life is an occasion, rise to it.”

That line hit me like a thunderbolt. The more I thought about it the more it made sense to me.

Life is an occasion. Webster defines the word occasion as “A particular time or instance of an event.” That is exactly what our life is. A Particular time or instance of an event.

Once that event ends it never comes around again. It can be recalled to a certain extent in memories from others, however, that either fades with time or becomes embellished as facts dim with the re-telling.

As I thought about this statement, it hit me why don’t I rise to that event, why don’t I make my event count?  Sure, I am grieving for my husband and my other family members, sure I am sad; however, my life is an occasion, it is an event, time to rise to it.

Then I went one step further and thought about those around me and how I could share that statement and challenge each of them to rise to the occasion. To challenge them to do things they have thought about doing but were afraid to do for whatever reason. Because FEAR is only False Evidence that Appears Real.

There was a time I was afraid to put myself out there. There was a time I would have never walked into a new congregation by myself. When I was told I was too stupid to write, I almost didn’t. But you see, Life is an occasion, rise to it means exactly that. We have no idea what we will find when we do. The things we can accomplish, the joy we bring others or to ourselves. The love we can radiate around us and the encouragement we give others just by rising to the occasion.

I am sure many of us have asked ourselves, “I wonder if….” I asked myself that question far too many times to count, and the epiphany I learned is this, if we don’t ask the question, we never know the answer.

Life is an occasion, rise to it. Ask those questions, then go and out and do those things that you always wondered if you could do. Dare to attend that event. Dare to make it happen. Rise to the occasion. Make a statement. Use those talents that you have been blessed with and have never tapped into. I think you will not only surprise yourself, you will find that you encourage others to rise to the occasion as well. All it takes it that first step.

Life is an occasion – Rise to it!!!!

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Turn The Page

Our Life is like a book, with each phase being a chapter. As with all books sometimes we get stuck on a chapter. How can we know what is next if we don’t “Turn the page.” The same with our life. How can we know what is next if we don’t turn those pages.

While some of the chapters might be sad, or funny or even suspenseful, we cannot grow until we turn the page. Sadly, in our day to day life, we get comfortable just walking in that same old rut. We look neither right or left we just plod along in our book of life.

We miss so much, we waste so many of our gifts and we cheat ourselves of new adventures, new things to accomplish and the ability to reach others on a level we didn’t know we possessed.

The beauty of our book of life is the fact it is still being written. We have not yet reached the end of the book. We have no idea what is next. That alone should make us excited to Turn the Page to see what is next, to face each new day with the wonder and excitement of a child. To follow that bend in the road, to see who we meet next, who we influence next and what impact we have on their life story.

Turning the Page gives us an opportunity to try new things, to see the world in all of her beauty, to be blessed by Our Creator, to bless others by being a part of their lives. To love ourselves better, to accept our self better. Turning the page, gives us the ability to set right wrongs, to clear up misunderstandings, to forgive and be forgiven.

So let us not waste another hour, let’s Turn the Page of the book of our life. Take that adventure. Write that story. Own it.

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Grief and Loss

Grief and Loss those two words are such small words and yet, they are such powerful words. Loss is that thing that happens when we lose something precious to us. Be is a job, a thing or someone. Grief is that thing we do after the loss.

Grief is that lingering ache in our heart, that sadness that fills our soul with pain as we wonder how we will ever get through it. Grief has no time line. While there is a process that process has its own ending.

Grief creates other emotions that some find they cannot deal with. People in their circle cannot understand how those emotions dance around like a mad tap dancer, moving first one way than another. The loved ones just want that person to move on – there is no moving on. There is only moving forward.

Some on you might ask, “How do I move forward? How do I fill the void in my heart and life? ”

First of all there is no filling that void, there will always be a hole. Once that tapestry of your life is ripped it can not be repaired, however, the tapestry can be added to.

When we allow God to be our guide and truly understand that he knows our loss and our grief better than we ever could. When we lean on him for our comfort and strength and know that he holds us in his hands, then and only then can we heal.

In Psalms 147:3  ”  He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.” God understands, he sent his only son to die for us. He willingly gave him up to a death that no man should ever have to suffer. He was in such grief that he had to turn his back. And yet, he tells us that he will heal us as the brokenhearted and he will bind our wounds.

We are told In Psalms 34:18 “The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.” What a beautiful thought, when the entire world leaves us and goes back to their own lives, God is near to us, he saves our crushed spirit. He listens when we repeat our pain over and over again. When we beg to understand the why of it all. He listens. And if we allow it he comforts us and saves us in our darkest hour.

Grief and loss is a natural phenomenon it is a part of life. However, it does not have to consume us nor does it have to destroy us. It does not have to become who we are, just what we do for  a season.