Awed and Amazed

Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, "Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?" And I said, "Here am I. Send me!!"

9:40 July 28, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — mafuller @ 11:57 PM

Ever have those moments when you know, without any doubt, that God is there? I have heard God speak to me in many ways over the past few months but never like physical contact. This morning Anna and I went out to LCF to say goodbye to the youth group as they left for their week long youth trip. After wishing them well and having my car windows chalked by Steve, Joanna and Grace, I headed out. I jumped on I80 east to Omaha for an interview. The weather was kinda gloomy, traffic was moving, jamming out to 100.7. When I drive I use the time as the perfect opportunity to talk with God and listen for him to speak. Today was no different, I prayed for the youth trip, friends and family, and talked to God about what was on my heart.

 I was finishing up my prayers getting ready to sit and listen when I felt a hand touch my right shoulder and squeeze. I was so surprised, I turned around to look in the back seat (I knew I was the only one in the car) and said, “God are you there?” Funny question, I know, but it was the only thing that I could formulate to come out of my mouth. I just sat there in awe and amazement, I felt MY GOD touch me. At that moment I looked at my clock in the car, it read 9:40am. Even now as I am writing this blog, it still brings a smile to my face and I am still amazed.

 I have had only one other instance that may have been physical presence of God. I happened to be staying at Anna’s house as I was passing through to GI for my internal med rotation. It was the first time I actually really met Casandra, she was the only ABC home at the time; Anna was in Columbus, Rebekah was in Mexico. I remember waking up the next morning to someone kissing my forehead. Whether it was a dream or indeed God, I still remember it vividly and choose to think it was indeed God.

 I have an awesome God.

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Contentment July 14, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — mafuller @ 1:31 AM

“The state of being contented; satisfaction, ease of mind”

Ease of mind, can I be truthful making this statement. No. My mind is not as ease, my heart is also in a state of unrest. Since starting this blog, God has been stretching me in all sorts of directions. I have grown in my faith these past few months more than I have for the past year. God has shown me the errors of my ways and has corrected me back onto his path. I am learning to let go of control, to trust, and allow God to be completely in charge. I have been given the opportunity to learn patience. I have felt God’s presence, his peace, his embrace, his hand in the world that surrounds me and where I am called to be. The state of being content fits right into the ways God has been teaching and stretching me and is just one more hurdle in my way of a closer relationship with him.

The fact is I can honestly say contentment has not been part of my life the past two weeks, I am feeling the proverbial walls closing in on me. I am not content being jobless, living with my parents, and relying on them to help me with my bills. It is more frustrating that I am doing all that I can to change these circumstances. I have been looking for jobs where I have felt God calling me to serve. I have put out at least two applications a week to job postings I diligently look for on a daily basis. I am not content with my state of employment and the process it takes to achieve that step.

Most of my friends I talk to and see while I am home in Iowa are either married or in the process of getting married. Some have even progressed to the step of expanding their family with children. I cherish the time I have with my friends and their children. I love being with them, laughing and having a good time, but I also desire to be where they are in their lives. I am not content in singleness, but I am still very content on waiting to have children as stated in a previous blog. 

There are many places in the bible that talks about contentment. The one that really hit hard and somewhat out of left field comes from Paul’s letter to the Philippians. In chapter four Paul writes,

“I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want.”          Philippians 4:11-12

I have been mediating on those words since I read them. How does one learn to be content in every circumstance? How does this look like in daily life? How can I apply it to my life? Do I really understand what Paul was saying? The obvious first answer was Paul relied on God, focused on him, let God be his contentment. As a learner I pursued for more understanding. Surprisingly enough, I stumbled across a few sermons on the World Wide Web focusing on Christian contentment. Each delved into this passage and made some applications. One in particular really made me stop and really focus on the heart on my ability not to be content.

It’s funny how God really opens our eyes. It once again pushed and stretched me to understand him. My non-contentment boils back down to the lessons I have been learning. It is all rooted in letting go of control, trusting and letting God.

“Contentment is the confidence of faith in the sufficiency of God’s provision for my needs and it is the confidence of the sufficiency of God’s grace for every circumstance.”            Rev Carl Haak

God has a perfect plan, he has a perfect timing. I may not understand the hows, whens, or whys, but God does. That is the beauty of having my God. He has made sure that his timing for me, the plan he has made for me is unique, special, and is exactly what he desires for me to have. This plan he has for me gives me the ability to glorify him all that I do. When I choose to look at my circumstances differently, I can see that contentment can be achieved because all I need to do is focus on God. I need to learn to be content in all circumstances like Paul because God is in control.

So if I take a step back and look at this time I have had since graduating with a new perception I see – quality time to spend with my parents and siblings because in the not so distant future I will not live as close as I do now. Quality time spent with my grandparents, especially my grandfather. Quality time spent with close family friends who need a smile in their day due to their circumstances. Quality time spent with close friends and their children. Time spent relaxing and taking time for myself after seven hard years of school to get me to this point in my life, achieving a huge goal I set for myself. Time spent on activities I love to do and haven’t had a chance to do. Most importantly it has been a time for me to work on letting go, trusting and letting God be in charge. It has been a period of tremendous growth, learning and relying on God.

“He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the hearts of men; yet they cannot fathom what God has done from beginning to end. I know that there is nothing better for men than to be happy and do good while they live. That everyone may eat and drink, and find satisfaction in all his toil—this is the gift of God. I know that everything God does will endure forever; nothing can be added to it and nothing taken from it. God does it so that men will revere him.”

Ecclesiastes 3:11-14

 

Sitting in the Back Pew at Church July 13, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — mafuller @ 11:53 AM

This isn’t the blog I have been working on, but this has been on my heart since church yesterday. The blog I am still working on will hopefully be up this week.

Yesterday I remembered the reasons why I don’t like to sit in the back pew at church. This past Sunday was the first time I have been back to the home church since graduating. There is no excuse for my tardiness every week, although I would like to blame it on certain aspects, reasons. Dad is an usher for the month so I sat in the second to last pew so that I could sit with him. It was our church’s own rendition of a mission Sunday and I was interested to see what they have done to make mission work more prevelant in our congregation.

 I had forgotten how distracting it is for me to sit back there. I found myself looking at the other congregation members, wondering what they were up to, why certain people sit together for numerous reasons, etc. Then I found myself not listening and wondering why we were singing most of our hymnals out of a book I haven’t sang from since I attended Wartburg. Not good to have ADD while at church….

Those distracting thoughts were easy enough to free from my mind, but watching people leave before the service was over is still with me. Our church is in a very small farming community and 99% of the members are somehow involved with the farming life. 90% of our active congregation are 50yrs or older. Our service is about an hour long and our congregation likes to keep it there. We had some interesting mission work reports and we ran over. At 15 minutes past that hour mark, members started to leave. All that was remaining of the service was offering, closing prayers and the final hymn, it just didn’t sit well with me. I can’t begin nor want to begin to judge if they had other plans or where their heart is, is worship and fellowship supposed to be boxed with a pretty bow in an hour? That is the perception I was left with and I still don’t like it.

In school, I had to sit in the back row. At the movies, I like to sit towards the back of the theater. At plays/musicals/school concerts I like to sit more towards the middle/back for a better view. In an airplane I like to sit towards the back of the plane. As a kid I had to sit towards the back of the school bus. Church is the only place I desire to be in the front row. I am free of the distractions and can solely focus myself and my heart for the purpose I am at church: to worship, praise, glorify and learn about my God. So needless to say, next Sunday I will be back in the front of our church in the pew my family normally sits in, no more distractions, I am there for my God.

 

It is a Good Thing that Ducks Can’t Blog….. July 3, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — mafuller @ 5:16 PM

Randomness…. I like randomness. 🙂 It allows for the unexpected fun, laughter, and joy that is part of life. However, randomness can go the other direction to destruction and pain. I choose today not to focus on the bad, but the good of randomness. Why would one want to blog on randomness?? Well it most definitely is at work in my daily life and I embrace it. 🙂 So this blog my be full of random thoughts….  hahahaha random!!! 🙂

Random thought 1: although not very random…

  • It is Independence Day tomorrow. The 4th of July makes me think about what our country has gone through to be a free nation. I like that our national anthem was written by Francis Scott Key on a British boat watching the bombing of Fort McKinley. Very Cool. 4th of July also makes me think of our military and their duty to serve and protect us, thanks Phoebe (my babysis) for doing your part serving a year in Iraq. It also makes me think of fireworks, the best is watching them being shot off a barge over the ocean…
  • Independence and freedom also makes me think about Jesus. He came to Earth as a small child, walked the Earth as a man, and then died for us so that we maybe FREE!! What a AWESOME gift to be free by Jesus’ blood.

Random thought 2: Lincoln

  • Came for a visit to celebrate the 4th with some of the coolest people I know. I loved walking into the house finding Anna and Grace just hanging out in the living room, jamming to music, making necklaces and bracelets and I just became part of the going ons and go with the flow.
  • Rebekah comes home and the first thing she says to me is “Welcome Home!!”
  • Uncle Sam Jam – Lincoln Symphony Orchestra and fireworks, enough said.
  • Flaming coconut soccer – I have been told it is quite fun and look forward to watching/participating. Coconuts, fire and soccer, good combo.
  • But most importantly this weekend celebrating the 4th is spent with people I miss dearly when I am not with them. We get to spend some quality time being together.

Random thought 3: Driving and boredom

  • On my extremely uneventful drive to Lincoln, I had the oddest combination of music going through my head. First song – on the road again. Pretty self explanatory. Second song – The ring of fire. I can hear Bekah singing it like she did at our bonfire and it makes me laugh, I need to download it. Third song – She’ll be coming around the mountain when she comes. From the movie Three Amigos withthe part of the singing bush, I love the singing bush. It is then quickly followed by the shooting of the invisible rider, hahaha.
  • Needless to say it made me chuckle and those I texted on my drive because I couldn’t keep it to myself.
  • I can almost recite every exit from Zearing to Lincoln in order from how much I drive there and back – I am not sure if I should be proud or consider it sad that I can do so. 

Random thought 4: awesome song

  • This song is awesome. Read the words. It is called Take My Hand by The Kry. It is based on Hebrews 11.

I know there are times
your dreams turn to dust
you wonder as you cry
why it has to hurt so much
give Me all your sadness
someday you will know the reason why
with a child-like heart
simply put your hope in Me

Chorus:
take My hand and walk where I lead
keep your eyes on Me alone
don’t you say why were the old days’ better
just because you’re scared of the unknown
take My hand and walk

don’t live in the past
cause yesterday’s gone
wishing memories would last
you’re afraid to carry on
you don’t know what’s comin’
but you know the one who holds tomorrow
I will be your guide
take you through the night
if you keep your eyes on Me

take My hand and walk where I lead
keep your eyes on me alone
don’t you say why were the old days better
just because you’re scared of the unknown
take My hand and walk where I lead
you will never be alone
faith is to be sure of what you hope for
and the evidence of things unseen
so take My hand and walk

just like a child
holding daddy’s hand
don’t let go of mine
you know you can’t stand on your own

Random thought 5: fleeting thoughts

So whatever else I was going to blog on randomness has ironically escaped me. Don’t you dislike it when thoughts just go away…. But I leave you with these verses that I came upon in my devotions this morning that I really like and whole heartedly agree with and they go together.

“For the Lord watches over the way of the righteous, but the way of the wicked will perish.” Psalms 1:6

“The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and discipline.” Proverbs 1:7