Listening by Penny Chavers

. . . have a heart for the people . . .

So, you want to be in ministry?  Maybe you want to be in some kind of ministry just because you think it would be cool to “have a ministry” or because you think you could do it better than someone else.  Be careful what you ask God for.  Whatever ministry He puts you in, you have to be prepared for it.  Whatever it is, you have to be seasoned for or in other words, “been there yourself.”  God will put you through whatever trials necessary to be able to “minister” to others in that area.

There are too many “self-proclaimed” faith healers, prophets, pastors, evangelists, etc. out there.  God did not and would not call them into the ministry that they have chosen for themselves.  If you truly want to be “in ministry” then you have to be in it for the right reason and have a heart for the people you are ministering to.  You have to have the love of Christ in you to be able to see people through the eyes of Jesus.  Then and only then can you effectively minister to people and, in effect, have a ministry (not “your” ministry but God’s ministry through you as a vessel).

The first step to any good effective ministry is being able to “listen.”  Most people are so busy talking that they cannot hear anyone else speak — including God.   They want to be the focus of the conversation.  They are too self-centered and too concerned about what is going on in their world that they do not have time to stop and listen to someone else’s problems or concerns.

If you want to minister to them, you have to listen to them so you can more effectively show the love of God to them.  Most people can tell if you are really listening to them or if you are really bored and just pretending to listen to them.  But, if you will take the time to listen to them, they will more readily listen to what you are trying to get across to them that will help their situation.

A lot of times, we are listening selfishly.  It comes from our human nature.  We are just waiting for an opportunity to share our experiences rather than listening to theirs.  Sometimes we have to resist that temptation and keep quiet and just listen.  This is part of showing love one to another — showing that we care enough to not seek our own will but to serve others as Jesus did.

Everyone wants to be heard.  People have a need to be heard.  And sometimes that is all it takes for someone to receive healing in their lives, whether it is physical, emotional, or spiritual.  Just to know someone cares enough about them to listen to them may be all they need.  Ninety percent of all illnesses could be avoided if people would just listen to them.  People are just too busy or self-consumed these days to listen to others.  There is too much texting one another — which contributes to isolation — rather than face to face communication.  Everyone — no matter who they are — needs someone to communicate with — even if they think they don’t.  God did not create us to be isolated from each other.  That is why He told us not to forsake the assembling of ourselves together (so much more as we see that day approaching).  We need to have the fellowship of other believers to help us stay strong in these last days.  And non-believers need to be able to feel loved by believers and be welcomed into the family of God.  How can they hear without a preacher?  And how can they believe if that preacher does not demonstrate the love of Christ to them?

And it begins by listening.  If we don’t take the time to listen to others, then how can we expect God to listen to us?  That could be the reason why our prayers go seemingly unanswered.  That is a really sobering thought!

Selah (stop and calmly think about that)

My Desire to Organize by Penny Chavers

always want to organize . . .

I always want to organize everything but my desire to have everything organized never happens simply because I do not have the time or energy to do it.  I always say “when I have the time to organize, I’m too tired and when I’m not too tired, I don’t have the time.”  It’s a vicious circle.  I can picture it but can’t make it happen.  I do strive to organize — some would even call me OCD (which I have learned not to accept).  When I do manage to get something organized, I feel so good about it.  I will check it off my to-do list.  Oh, I’m very good at making an “organized” list — no problem with that one — haha!  I’m a big believer in lists — gotta have them for everything: grocery list, errands list, cleaning list, repair list, honey do list, and even a list of extracurricular things I want to do like sewing.

In a perfect world, everything in my house would be organized and so would my schedule, my husband’s schedule, everything!  But, if everything was organized then my mind would have nothing left to think about when I am trying to go to sleep at night to keep me awake.

Organize

The Delivery by Penny Chavers

. . . will not come as expected . . .

A delivery can be a good thing or it can be a bad thing.  Sometimes your package that you ordered will not come as you expected.  When your delivery arrives, it may be damaged which causes you to be quite frustrated.  Or it may not look the same as when you viewed it online — sometimes it’s because of false advertising but oftentimes, it is just because you could not see it in person — maybe it is an article of clothing that doesn’t fit or the color is off or maybe you just changed your mind and you no longer want it like you thought you did when you ordered it.

Regardless of the situation, if you are not happy with your delivery, you usually have the choice of returning it if you choose to go that route.  But, there are some deliveries that you cannot return or should never refuse to accept.  Such is the case of the delivery of a baby.  You cannot return a baby — a baby is a gift from God and should not even be up for reconsideration.  Even if the baby does not come out as expected — that baby was sent down from Heaven as a gift to you.  If that baby does not look like you or your spouse, it doesn’t matter or if the baby has a genetic defect or some other physical problem, it is still your child and came from your loins.  God does not look on the outward appearance or reject someone based on their looks or their physical condition.  In fact, He knew you before you were born and He knows everything that is going to happen in your life before you are even born.

In Psalm 139:16, it says God saw our unformed substance and in His book all the days of our life were written down before we ever took shape.  That is how much thought God put into us and creating us.  So, if God put that much thought into creating us, how can anyone refuse a beautiful gift from Him such as a baby?

Delivery

The Glaring Sun by Penny Chavers

The end of time is coming soon. . .

The end of time is coming soon.  The signs are everywhere.  God gives us signs in the heavens and even during the tribulation period, He is using the sun, moon, and stars for His purpose.  He is so merciful and gives man every possible chance to repent.

According to the Book of Revelation, chapter 16, the sun will be so glaring down on men (much worse than the eclipse) that they will be scorched with fire and a fervent heat.  Despite this plague upon men by the fourth angel who poured out his vial, men continued to blaspheme God’s name with their glaring tongues.    And after the fifth angel poured out his vial, men were gnawing their tongues because of the pain but yet, they still refused to repent and continued to blaspheme God.

And by the time the seventh angel poured out his vial into the air, there was a great voice from the throne of heaven saying “It is done.”  Then there was such a great earthquake that every island disappeared along with the mountains, and great hail fell out of heaven.  Even still, men blasphemed God.

Glaring

The Elemental Power Behind the Eclipse by Penny Chavers

A rare event . . .

CGS33853Yesterday was an interesting day in our world. A rare event that does not happen too often. What causes or creates these supernatural events? Is it just a coincidental event or is it a carefully planned strategic event? And if so, who is behind it?

Well, I will skip the scientific explanation and get right to the punch. It certainly is not “Mother Nature.” And it was no accidental event or coincidental event either. It most assuredly was a carefully designed and planned event by the One who knows all and created all things — God our Creator. He made the sun, the moon, and the stars and He made them for signs and for seasons to show us things. Things that happen in the future and to give us light for the seasons and to be light for us so we would not be in darkness. Not only does He not want us to be in darkness in the literal sense but also it is His desire for us to not be in darkness in the spiritual sense.

Elemental

Spicy by Penny Chavers

Spicy and I do not get along

Spicy and I do not get along!  There are foods that are sooooo spicy, it sets my tongue on fire.  Even foods that I would normally like to eat, I cannot enjoy because of the spice.  It’s such a shame, such a shame that spicy and I cannot get along.  Too bad — so sad!  Even Spicy Jr. I cannot tolerate because it sets my throat on fire — go away spicy — go away you must.  I cannot tolerate you either.

Some like the “spice” of life and truly enjoy all kinds of food with Spicy on them.  But not I — oh not I!  Even little Pepper I cannot enjoy — just a dash and I’m aghast and must refrain from eating that dish.

So sorry Spicy — go away — go away — and don’t come back another day!

Spicy

Life is Like a Carousel by Penny Chavers

Life is like a carousel — you can go around and around the same mountain and through the same trial passing the same scenery you’ve already seen many times.  You never seem to get through the trial or climb that mountain.  Try as you might, you never make any progress or very little.   You struggle to get up to the mountain but just don’t have the strength to climb it.  Going through trials is not a picnic the first time around so having to go through the same trial over and over again is definitely a bummer.

What is the reason for this?  God, who is all-knowing, and knows what is best for us, allows us to continue to go through something until we “get” it.  The trials that we must face actually help us even though we do not see it at the time.  Trials shape us and prepare us for what lies ahead of us.  They also help form our character and make us better “character” witnesses to others.  If we never go through trials, we can never have a testimony to share with others.

The best thing about the carousel is when you finally get to get off of it — you’ve made it!  You finally got through that trial and climbed that mountain that you thought you could never do!  And when you get there, you are so excited and it’s then you realize what the trial was all about.

Carousel“>

I Write Because . . . by Penny Chavers

I write because I’ve always wanted to be an author . . .

I write because I’ve always wanted to be an author in some way.  For a long long time now I wanted or felt that I was supposed to write short fictional stories (at least in the beginning when I was younger) and then later, as the years went by, more true to life stories such as my own story.  My own story would be and will be a major undertaking as it is filled with a lot of trials that I have had to endure throughout my life plus the fact that it is harder to write about myself.   But I feel that the events of my life need to be recorded because it may help someone else who is going through similar circumstances. Also, I feel an urge or sense that I should write about things that pertain to living a Godly life.  There are issues that I feel need to be written about that will help lead people to Christ and/or help Christians to live holy lives, not in a legalistic way, but in such a way that they can be witnesses to others as well as live to please the Lord.

Writing is also an effective tool for accomplishing the things you want to say and it is the best way to get your point across to someone without being interrupted by them.  There is nothing more frustrating than not being able to say what you want to say because you get interrupted either by the person or persons you are trying to communicate with or because you forgot what you wanted to say.   And sometimes what you want to say does not come out the way you intended so when you write it, then you can think more clearly about what you want to say.

Writing is also a way of remembering things you want to remember, not only for yourself but for communicating to others.  Even if your audience does not appear to be interested in what you have to say, at least you get to express your thoughts to them.  Whether or not they listen is up to them, particularly in the area of Christianity or religious views.  I know from experience that people do not or will not listen when you try to talk to them about God.  Either they are unsaved and hardheaded or they have their own view of what it takes to be a Christian and they do not care about your views.  All you can do is provide them with the information and then let them decide what they want to adhere to.  Even God Himself gives everyone the freedom to choose.  It’s all about choice.  So the readers of what you write about have that freedom to choose too whether or not to read your writings, whether it be fiction, nonfiction, religious, or secular.

Writing is just one of many things that I always wanted to accomplish in my life, so after all these years, I’m finally beginning to do that.  That is why I write.