Hearts for Him

God that you would give me a heart after You

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Why Run – Part 4

Why am I Running Anyways?

Reason #4 – ‘What Am I Capable Of?’

After God challenged me to step up into the full marathon, He has started to reveal to me things about myself; things about what I am capable of.  I have spent much of my life believing lies about who I am and that I was not capable.

I posted this back on April 5, just as I started to understand the first few basics of what He was calling me to do.  His truth started to work it’s way into me and reveal to me those lies.  In their place, He has spoken words of truth and life over me.  He sees me not as who I have been, but as who I am now.  He loves me, fully and completely, right now as I am… mistakes and failures included.  By the grace of God and the mercy from the Blood of Christ Jesus, I am capable and loved.

I feel that I have just started to see myself in the light of how He sees me.

https://www.crowdrise.com/TeamDaybreakGR2016/fundraiser/josiahschrotenboer
https://m.facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=10208710607261060&id=1187884386

Why Run – Part 3

Why am I Running Anyways?
Reason #3 – ‘Tough Talking’

In talking with some of the people at the kickoff event, I explained that the furthest I had ever run was a 5K a couple years before. Normal people step up to a 10K… but jumping straight to a half marathon? It didn’t sound very wise. However my options were half or full and the half was clearly the more logical option. So with a little uncertainty, I began telling people that I’d commit to the half. I even found a few people that had only run 5K also. That was encouraging.

However, every time I said that I was going to do the half marathon, I felt a nudge in my spirit. When I stopped to listen for a second, I felt like He was telling me ‘Really?!…’ tough talking me like one of my brothers. After this happened a few times I decided it was time to stop and ask.

“Alright God, I am not used to You tough talking me…. maybe I misheard or misunderstood. What are you saying to me?”

“Sure, you can run a half marathon if you put your mind to it and train. .. but if you’re going to run a full marathon you’re going to need my help”

I knew instantly what I was to do.

 

Why Run – Part 2

Why am I Running Anyways?
Reason #2 – God had other plans for me

A few months into this new desire and goal of mine, a friend of mine encouraged me to come to a kickoff event for Hope Water Project at their church. I remember him telling me “You could totally run a marathon” and thinking to myself “I have only ever run 5K…yeah, right I could”. However, I agreed to at least come to the event and figure out how I could support the great work that HWP is doing.

When I got there, it didn’t take me too long to pick up on the fact that God had a plan to get me involved beyond what I was planning. As I started to see the heart of the ministry and the great things they were doing to put clean water wells into villages in Sierra Leone, I knew that I wanted to get involved. So before the night was over, I committed to a few t-shirts and running the half marathon.

God’s plan starts to unfold…

Why Run – Part 1

Why am I Running Anyways?
Reason #1 – New Year’s Resolution

In January I was determined to start a new chapter in my life. As most people do in the New Year, I took a good look at my life. There were lots of things I wasn’t proud of… lots of things I wanted to change, but where do I start?

Quitting my job and starting a new one sure helped kick start the direction that I knew I needed to head, but what else do I need to change? I needed to find something to replace some of my bad habits so I took a look at my physical activity. Not only did I feel like I never had energy and was 20 lbs overweight, I started to realize that I really didn’t understand how to motivate myself. So I started waking up and running at the gym.

Looking around at the other people on similar agendas, I really wondered if I was capable of doing this consistently. After all, it hurts to run more than a few hundred feet… but life couldn’t continue in the my old patterns. I finally desired change more than the discomfort of getting out of bed early on cold winter days. My lungs kicked me for the first few months as I started to understand what consistency looked like.

To be continued…

https://www.crowdrise.com/TeamDaybreakGR2016/fundraiser/josiahschrotenboer 

I Am Opening New Doors For You in This Season!

I hear the Spirit of the Lord saying, “I am making all things new! As you transition into August I am revealing Myself as your Creator. Get ready to experience the splendor of My majesty.

This is a season where broken things are being recreated. I have so many new beginnings in store for you. I am truly giving My people a reset. I have heard your cries. I am responding with unending grace and unconditional love.

“I Am Opening New Doors For You in This Season!”

“I am connecting you and reconnecting you with divine alliances. I am drawing My Body together. There must be unity if the world is to ever know My goodness. I am exposing works that cause division and those who practice divination.

“In this season I am dealing with the hearts of those who lead My Body. Take the humble road. Humility and gratitude will pave the path for favor and supernatural increase! It is a season where, as you prefer others above yourselves, you will find true satisfaction in the things that please My heart.

As You Allow Me to Change You, I Will Change Your Circumstances”

“For many, this divine reset marks a freshness to relationships. It is truly a time for weddings, baptisms, baby dedications, and celebration. The season of depression, confusion, lack, and sinful cycles is over.

Don’t look back. Don’t bring up the past. It is under the Blood of Christ. Just as your sins have been forgiven forgive others. Let go of the bitterness and the regrets. Crucify your ego. Release the anger. I will work everything for good. I am restoring marriages and friendships. They are getting ready to apologize to you.

“I Am Releasing Financial Funding in This Season!”

I have seen your heart. I have heard your cries. I will fund the vision,” says the Lord. “The tests I have put you through are over. You have graduated. You have been found faithful.

“Get ready to move into new realms of My glory. Every time you encounter My glory I am changing you. I am changing your thoughts. I am changing your perspective. I am increasing the power of My Spirit. I am anointing you to bring breakthrough to others. More than ever I am looking for those who are willing to carry their cross and follow hard after Me.

“Receive the fresh prophetic flow of My presence. Be refreshed. Receive an excitement for that which is coming. The future is full of adventure. Expect Me to do mighty things for nothing is impossible for those who believe!”

Rene Picota,
Streams of Life Church and Rene Picota Ministries

Email: info@renepicota.org
Website: www.renepicota.org | www.streamsoflife.church

Perfect Confirm Strengthen and Establish

​Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. 

Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.

But resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same experiences of suffering are being accomplished by your brethren who are in the world.

After you have suffered for a little while, the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, will Himself perfect, confirm, strengthen and establish you.

Calm the Raging Sea

I keep looking at the waves and the rain… The giant swells of water block my view of the horizon and I lose direction.  Water is filling the boat and bailing just isn’t feasible alone.

I have let fear in.   I let my worry overtake.me.  Is this it?  Am I done?  Is all lost? 

Then I remembet that I didn’t start this journey alone.  I would have never left dry land without the promise that He would forever be with me… that I would join Him on the journey that only He knows the destination. 

Thanks for the Mess

Thank You God for not simply rescuing me from my mess but for using it to draw me closer to You.  Thank You for coming alongside me, disciplining me and teaching me that in all this You are always after my heart and what is best for me… Regardless of my current perspective.   I want what You have for me and I do consider it pure joy that You are my Teacher.  That You will use this and other trials to make me more like You makes me leap for joy because I have set my corse on You and You alone.  Uphold me with a willing spirit and continue to let me see joy and gladness wherever I am because 

Choosing a Bible

I came across this today and simply loved how precisely Mark Driscoll breaks down how to understand all the different versions and intents of the different Bible translations.  If you’re working on choosing a Bible in a version that suits you best, please take the time to listen to this!  I love that I stumbled upon a similar viewpoint in my own life recently.  As I prayed and sought God about what Bible version(s) I should use when rededicating my life, it just so happened that God already provided me with a brand new leather bound NASB edition study Bible still in it’s wrapping.  A few weeks later as I really started to dive into my Bible and seek to know more and understand His Word more, He also provided me with a One Year Bible on audio that is NLT.  Having both a thought-for-thought Bible as well as a word-for-word has been such a blessing.  Now for more available resources to get into the Hebrew/Greek integrations…

Stewardship

Thank You God for wooing me.  I don’t know words to describe how enjoyable it is to feel Your pursuit.  I am humbled and brought to tears each time.  When I am slow to understand, You give me patience.  When I make mistakes, You give me grace and mercy.  When I stray from Your commandments, You give me correction.  You are more than I could ever ask for, hope or dream.

So God has really been working on me lately about stewardship.  Not just of my finances, although that’s the easiest place for me to learn and understand.  I have really felt over the last few weeks He has been working on me… asking me if I am All In and I have really started looking at what does that mean; in each area of my life.  I watched a sermon by Mark Driscoll yesterday afternoon on stewardship because of this same learning curiosity.  Do I really understand stewardship?  Am I really All In with this area of my life?  It turns out the topic of stewardship really applies to all areas of my life, decisions and actions.  There are very few parts of my life not affected by this topic.

In order to wrap my head around what he was saying, I had to start by imagining that I still lived at home, but in a family from hundreds if not thousands of years ago:  In a time where I did the same thing my father did; the family business so to speak.  I grew up learning and doing work under him and now as an adult I work alongside him.  As my father ages, perhaps I will even inherit what he has.  I live within the families borders and as I build my own family, we become our own separate entity, but still part of the whole.  Maybe we build another house on the property or add onto the family house.  Either way, the idea would be that I live alongside my family.  Everything I need to sustain me comes from the family.  Everything I do, contributes to the family.
(Last year I met an awesome christian guy named Zion that lives in a commune in New Zeeland that lives sort of like this.. but that is a story for a different day)

If this was my world, everything I would do would reflect upon my family’s name.  Essentially, I would be a steward of my father and his name.  As I worked, it would bring reward and honor to the family.  As I made mistakes, it could impact the family negatively.  Either way, I am part of the family.  It would have taught me a lot to have grown up in this type of environment.  To some degree, I did.  In many ways, the opposite.

Now to look back at money, which is where my processing started, I began to think of this world a little further.  I suppose that I’d have a company card that would give me access to our families finances.  In order to buy something, I’d better stop to consider what my family (especially my father) would think of that purchase.  Or better yet, ask my father if this was in alignment with his thoughts/intention/direction for our families needs.  It’s kind of like turning in receipts for reimbursement at my job.  Someone reviews them to see if they are reasonable and authorized and if everything is good, I get reimbursed… except this is a step further because I would already have access to charge to the family account.

The silver is mine, and the gold is mine, says the LORD of Heaven’s Armies.Haggai 2:8

If everything in my life is truly His.  If all that I have and all that I ever am is His… that would mean that 100% of the money sitting in my checking account (and everywhere else) is His.  He only asks me to give Him back 10%… but all of it was His.  This sounds a whole lot more like the example above I was dreaming up.  Like I have access to charge something directly to God’s bank account.  In doing so, shouldn’t I be thinking (or better yet asking) what He’d like me to do with these purchases?  What if my credit or debit cards had the family name right above my own?

Jesus Christ of Nazareth
Josiah Schrotenboer

Each time I went to swipe that card, I’d think about it differently…  Wouldn’t I?   If everything that I spent went through an approval process and was questioned and asked for justification.  Or if before swiping my card, I had to stop and ask my Father if it was alright to do?  This mindset turned the tables over in my mind.  Thinking about my 90% still being His and that I am only a steward of what He has given me.  I’m not even sure that I’ve fully processed it yet.  I am definitely excited by my understanding starting to come together.

Now let’s take this family commune example and bring what He is teaching me full-circle.  What if I applied this very mentality to my decisions and actions.  What if I looked at how I spend my time (also a gift from God that I am responsible to steward well) and put it under the same microscope?  Is the current thing that I am doing in my Heavenly Father’s best interests?  Am I bringing honor to His name in what I am doing?  Have my actions showed others that I wear His name?  That I come from and live in this Heritage?  Not that I am perfect or that 100% of what I do needs to be backbreaking… just that I am His steward.  This verse is part of something I have been working to memorize over the past few weeks.  It has stuck out to me and started to make me think differently.

Don’t you realize that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you and was given to you by God? You do not belong to yourself, for God bought you with a high price. So you must honor God with your body.1 Corinthians 6:19-20

When we display our righteous deeds, they are nothing but filthy rags.Isaiah 64:6

So our body, our time, our finances… all His.  Not even our most righteous of deeds are ever possible of repaying Him for all that He has given us.  From our very breath and every time our heart beats.  All of it was to Him (on a side note, this is right in alignment with the premise of CS Lewis’ Sixpence none the richer).  So am I being a good steward with everything I have and everything I am doing?  Am I taking the time to ask myself, is this what my Father would want me to be doing?  Better yet, am I taking the time to stop and ask the Holy Spirit that lives inside of me (easier than a cellphone call) if this is something I should be doing?  This is what I want for my life.  I want to be a good steward with all that I have left in my life.  I want to ask this question about everything I do; in spending my time, my energy and my finances.  I want to ask this question about how and where I am going… and the people I will see along the way.

Holy Spirit, would You help me hear your voice better?  I need to be able to hear Your voice better in my life.  Help me train my mind to think like this.  Help me root our my fleshly desires and nature to replace with Your desires and nature.  I want to bring glory and honor and prosperity to the family name… to Your name… and not to my own.  I want everything that You have for me and I know that I need You more in my life.  Come and meet me.  Let me walk with You and train me in Your ways. 

It is so awesome that I get to serve a God that adopts me into a family that I could never deserve.  Even after being the prodigal son multiple times, He accepts me back and gives me back the Family name.  I love that I get to serve with this kind of heart.  I love that I get to be a steward.  Everything that I do reflects on the Family name… no pressure.

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