Posted by: joshuasthoughts | October 21, 2010

Pride

I have stopped writing for some time due to a struggle with pride. I felt that by writing I was seeking an acolade of types from all whom read. I went from trying to help others by my experiences to seeking edification, and that is just wrong. So I ask your forgiveness, and in such I also intend to write again. I have muffled a gift God has given me, and for that, I also must repent.

See you soon

Posted by: joshuasthoughts | December 25, 2009

The Gift

Let me first off tell you a little something about me for those of you whom have not been around me that much at all or for that sake even know me. I am for the most part a lone wolf, I had dreams as a child being just like the Marlboro Man, tough and dependent upon no one other than God and myself. I love the outdoors; extreme heat is my friend as well as frigid cold. Anything that is a challenge begins a flow of ice water through my veins. I pretty much could live for serenity of nature or the flow of adrenaline in a nutshell. However as life has progressed God saw fit to bless me with a beautiful wife, and two amazing sons. This as you can imagine has caused me to adapt to the changes that have come my way, and if I may say so I feel for the most part have done a stand up job. I am now engulfed in love for my family, and cannot stand a day without them. Hardly the Marlboro Man I had set out to become.

This Christmas as always, I desired to go above and beyond in blessing those whom have blessed me. My wife, whom I often say has the blood of Spanish Royals running through her, belongs in some country home in Paris or Spain. She is gorgeous, not just body, however as well in spirit. She has classic elegance, as she moves, it’s as if she is made as a doll. I could go on and on however I will save you of my obsession. This Christmas I wanted to give her something to compliment her beauty and grace of style that she has been robbed of since the birth of our first boy. So I set out all alone to brave the mall. Now you must comprehend from my short biography that this is not me. I detest the mall, more so especially stores designed for women. This is completely out of my element, something that makes me feel very uncomfortable. However after all most two weeks of looking I found it. “It” you ask? Yes, “It” if anything is an it, this was certainly an “It”. It was the most beautiful purse I had ever seen. Not that I pay attention to purses, however of the literally fifty plus I had viewed over the past week this was certainly the finest. Soft leather, a sweet vanilla color, with a lavender lining, not to mention it had three separate compartments. You see since the birth of our eldest, my wife has carried a diaper bag. I ask thee, what is lady-like of a diaper bag? Nothing, nothing at all I will agree. So when I came across this purse, I knew it was something she not only needed, but more so, something I wanted her to have because of the beauty I saw of her and within her. So I bought it, as well as a matching lavender lined wallet, wrapped them, and then hid them for a couple of weeks prior to Christmas, I could hardly withstand giving them to her, however somehow I managed.

Christmas Eve my blessed wife opens the first of the two boxes she has been given, upon opening it, she is overtaken with awe in the ribbon, her eyes open the box and it is as if a child has gazed upon something of his fathers, that he knows he should not have, however hopes that it will be allowed for him to just hold it. She picks it up, and looks over the outside, and then, almost like as if metal blinders came over her eyes as a machine, she plops it back in the box and precedes to put the lid on it! The same befalls of the wallet, in all it splendor, it is given light for but a minute, then back in the box! She then goes as far as even tying the bows back on to the boxes, and placing them by the wall. Might I say my heart was in agony. I could not contain myself, and I asked her why. She then lashed out at me, and asked how she was to carry diapers, and wipes, and all the stuff she carried. My reply was simple, “it has pockets…” I seriously, all kidding aside almost cried. My eyes whelped up and I turn to begin cleaning up wrapping paper. I was crushed.

The following hour, was a calming period for me, I swept, cleaned counters, cleaned the fireplace, washed dishes, etc. Simply anything to spend the anger that boiled within my soul. As I was scrubbing burned chili from within a pot from the night prior, I had a epiphany of sorts. Our Father, God, he as well loved his bride. She had become something so far from what he had originally known and loved that he desired to do something to allow her to feel the grace of what she beheld within. He decided to leave his element, whom He is, and enter a realm that He had designed however could not relate. He also rather than a few weeks but for more so thousands of years, “shopped” for the perfect gift for his bride. After this time the gift He decided must come from his heart, and more so, it must be of his heart. It would be His son. So He sent this gift, His son wrapped in swaddling clothes, and we were at awe with Him, and spoke of His beauty, and then we abruptly put Him in a tomb. Why, you ask? It was because He did not come, as a God, and as a king. Moreover He came as a child, born in a manger, growing to a carpenter, to ride a donkey, and speak in parables, whom would allow Himself to be hung on a cold wooden cross and murdered for the sake of returning humanity to its Creator. This was not the present we desired, nor felt we deserved. This is “the” present we put back in the box and continue to keep in the box 2010 years later. This year, make the choice to open the box. Allow Christ to function in your life, open your heart to Him, for this is the gift of which He desires from His bride, the gift of her heart. The Grace of our Lord, has no gift receipt, there is no returning it. The blood has been spilled, the debt has been paid, the curtain has been torn, come and taste the Love of your Creator, come bathe in the presence of your King.

Grace be with you now and forever more.

Posted by: joshuasthoughts | September 18, 2009

The Power of the Mind

So here it is, one-o-clock in the morning, and I am sitting in our guest bedroom floor in the dark with the exception of the warm glow from my lap top. In the immediate room, I can hear the deep breathing of my beloved son whom might I add is sleeping oh so well. I have been fighting sleep since around nine-o-clock, and furthermore I will have to “get up” in three hours to get ready for my twelve-hour friday workday. Not the ideal situation by any means in my eyes. I have read successfully, and intently 4 books of the bible, prayed, and walked the house as if I was a lion, and even gone as far to look out the window as a child in a daze for a few minutes. To my frustration nothing has eased my sleeplessness. For you see, my mind, quite possibly never rest. I started thinking about something early today, and my mind has not released it as of yet. Nor I assure you will it until it is completely exhausted or satisfied. One or the two, and might I add from prior experience the latter always comes first.

My wife labels it as obsessive compulsive, once I want something, or think of a question it consumes me. It can be a strength, however many view it as a weakness.  I suppose I view it as just who I am, it is what makes me click, what sets me apart from the crowd and gets me motivated. I assure you the men whom founded this country, had the same issue, they would have had to, to envision something so blessed by God, coming from nothing at all.

I often have a thought or desire, even a need of sorts and until I can quench it in a sense, it will just “be there”. However today is somewhat different. I seemed to have entered a new level of my mind. For now, not only do I have this thought, this desire, I also have an intermingling thought further consuming my mind. Galatians Five and Twenty Five reads, ” If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit”, and Galatians Five and Six Teen adds “walk in the Spirit and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh” Now let me fist preface for all of you that “lust” and “flesh” do not always mean things that are “naughty”. I will leave it at that for lack of a parental consent button on my blog. Lust, in definition is, “a passionate or overmastering desire or craving”. Flesh, in definition, “the body, esp. as distinguished from the spirit or soul”.

Not to be complicated or elusive but in short, I have a desire, that is healthy, and conducive to life, however I am now on the fence as to whether the focus and deliberation of this thought is of the Spirit or of the flesh. For the line in the sand according to the Word is that black and white. Romans Eight and Eight reads, “So then they that are in the flesh can not please God”. That is pretty cut and dry, is it not? I dont want to be “in the flesh” at all.

 There are many “desires or cravings” that we all have on a daily basis. Some as simple as wanting to have a cold glass of sweet tea after a hard days work, others as complex as desiring to provide a solid living for your family. Now of those two examples does either strike you as of the Spirit? So with this said for one to be “passionate, or overmastered” by the thought of either be interpreted as “wrong”? For some reason I do not believe so.  I believe both can be accomplished or brought about in the Spirit. However there is a fine line in that statement of belief as well. Please do not mis-interpret what I am stating so matter of factly.

It is at the point when your drive to sustain or obtain your thought is nothing more than to quench your “desire or craving” that you leave the Spirit and enter your flesh. For in the Spirit, there is a spirit of self control, and in the spirit of self control, there is obedience to the command to “walk in the Spirit”.

With this final statement I must leave, for I have been in the flesh for seventeen hours now, I am tired, I need to go repent, and reboot my mind with my new installation. Thank you Jesus for revelation.

Now that I read this it probably will only make sense to me.

Posted by: joshuasthoughts | March 28, 2009

December 7, 1941

Pear Harbor, or as it is called by the people of Hawaii, Wai Momi, meaning “harbor of pearl” is a beautiful serene place. The US naval base was used to hold the US Pacific Fleet. Japan initiated the strike to keep the US from greatly effecting the war they where planning to wage against Southeast Asia, Britain, The Netherlands, and the United States. Japan used six Air Craft Carriers, and a total of somewhat 363 aircraft. They as we have all read and have learned took the United States by what some call the greatest surprise military strike ever performed. They decimated their intended target. The US had not a clue what was coming, their was no formal declaration of war.  “December 7th, 1941 – a date which will live in infamy” Franklin D. Roosevelt. Approximately2,402 people killed, and over 1,282 people wounded. With repercussions that will last forever.

While eating lunch the other day I had the opportunity to sit alone. I read my bible and ate my food and just thought about life, and things along that nature. When my meal arrived, I closed my bible to prevent my sloppy eating habits from covering the page and just sat their and took in all that was around me. My wife often gets a kick out of me, because I look and notice everything around me, I listen to conversations, watch eyes, look at the construction of the building, you name it, I see it. Well this day was no different, I as sat, a table next to me had three business colleagues, talking about all they had going on, and every other thing had to do with relaxing and drinking a  beverage of some sort. I thought to myself if this is what I used to sound like? Could I have been this lost? Yes, I concluded I was probably far worse. I thank God He snatched me up from the pit I was in, and has now given me ears to hear, and eyes to see. These poor souls that where next to me had not a clue, and if they did have a clue they where choosing not to give it attention at all. I then ask myself how it is people or mankind in general can choose to ignore God. How is it we know He is in existence, and choose to not do His will? Why do we choose not to hear? I think in a way, as the US in 1941, we feel there has been no formal declaration of war. We feel we are safe, we know the potential for death is there, but it is at bay and as long as it is there we are fine. All will be as usual, no cares, nor worries, just life.

I have known many a people who as myself at one point had this point of vision. I know several, who are no longer hear on this earth. My best friend, and brother may have never heard the engine noise of the bomber till it was too late. I pray the Lord forgive me for my wretched ways of not screaming sooner for the decimation to come.

Take the time and hear God now, see His works, and know He is God, and repent as I. For the time will come,when He will whisper no more and all will hear.

“And I heard a great voice out of the temple saying to the seven angels, Go your ways, and pour out the vials of the wrath of God upon the earth. ” Revelation Six teen and One.

Posted by: joshuasthoughts | February 6, 2009

Love to Live

Mike Tuttleson was an average man. He worked a ranch for the majority of his life just south of Livingston Texas. If you where to ask anyone of him, their response would be, “Mike is a hard worker, and he is good to his family”. Mike was one of those men, who went above and beyond in all he did, his wife became interested in art not to long ago, and before you could shake a stick, Mike had built a studio for her on the backside of their home facing the west, so as the sun set, her work would catch the light of the passing day. Mike was known for this type of love for his family. Whatever he did, he did in complete dedication to his family.

 

As time grew on, as it always does, Mike’s family moved forward in the ways of life, His children grew up and left home, and His farm turned from a working farm into more of just a vast pasture.  It was some point along this time, that Mikes heart became somewhat different. He was sitting with his wife in her studio, late one evening; the sun had just set as he looked at his wife with tears in his eyes. She turned to him and asks him what was wrong. His reply could have knocked the rock from the very foundation of their home. Mr. Tuttleson went on to tell his wife, that though they had been married for almost forty years his emotion for her was no longer the same. He did still care for her, and he knew he needed to be there for her, and he promised he always would. He went on to tell her, that all would stay the same, except for his feelings for her where gone and he did not for see them coming again. After his wife gathered her composure, she managed to ask him when this all change took place. Mike told her he could not put a date on it, but he knows that throughout his life he has done things, of necessity, and what he thought was the right thing to do. What had started of as a deep love for her, had been overtaken by the cares of providing and supplying for his families needs. This was no longer pure love, it had more so become, just a way of life. It took his wife all that she had, to turn and gaze out the window, into the darkness of the pasture, and remember that she loved this man, and though this has come, she would continue to do so as long as she had breath in her lungs.

 

Mike and his wife, continued to live as one, for the remaining days of their lives. Mike passed at the young age of eighty two. After his burial one of his friends walked up to his wife and assured her, she had been blessed by having a husband like Mike, one who had dedicated his life, to the well being of his family, and rendered his love to her alone. His wife in utter despair choked back her tears and only nodded, for unknown to all around, her heart had not died that day, but many years prior, for the sun had set, and it was to never rise again.

 

Our Lord speaks of love often in His word. I am guilty of becoming callused to this word; in modern society it is tossed around as much as “hello” or “good bye” in common conversation. During Paul’s letter to the church in Cornith, he tells them “and now abide in faith, hope, love, these three, but the greatest of these is love”. (1CR 13:13) Paul states prior that “If I speak in tongues of Men and of Angels, and have not Love, I am but a resounding gong, or clanging cymbal”. In my weak interpretation, if I walk in faith, and, and hope in all earnesty, if I have not love, I am nothing. This speaks volumes to me, and I feel God has been convicting me of this for some time now. What are the reasons for which I do, what I do. For though I do what I do because I know it is the right thing to do, am I doing it out of Love or out of devotion? Furthermore if what I do is out of devotion, can this be brought in and twisted as a “love”?

 

In Ephesians, Paul is closing his letter to the Church in Ephesus, he states, “Grace be with all them who Love our Lord, Jesus Christ in sincerity”. (Eph 6:24)I have skipped over this simple yet deep word no telling how many times. “Love our Lord, Jesus Christ in sincerity”. Sincerity as described in the dictionary is “pure; unmixed; unadulterated”. For me to do anything that is not of sincere love, and label it as for the for “Christ” is nothing more than an act of devotion. 

 

I recently began a study, of the book of Revelation. It is being taught by Charles Swindoll. In this study, we are taken to the second chapter of Revelation, where the Church of Ephesus is addressed yet again. The Lord says unto the church “I know your deeds, your hard work and perseverance. I know that you can not tolerate wicked men, that you have tested those who claim to be apostles, but are not, and have found them false. You have persevered and endured hardships for my name, and have not grown weary. Yet I hold this against you: you have forsaken your first love”. It is a tremendous statement, because as we read in Ephesians we know of this Love. This love was for Christ, and it was to be a sincere love, a pure; unmixed; unadulterated love. So though the church, has remained faithful, and done all listed things, this is there downfall. They are warned, to repent, and to do things as they did them at first, or the Lord will remove their lamp stand.

 

At this point I am sure you are asking yourself, how this is possible, to do everything right, yet forget ones love? As with Mike Tuttleson and his relationship with his wife, I as a Christian, fall into love with my Savior. I begin to structure my life around His priorities. I become involved in a church, and devote my time to its correct functioning. Yet all the while it becomes more of a way of life, than a reason for life. As I sit down and look out the window of time, and realize that many of the things I was doing where not out of Love for my Lord, but more because they where what was expected of me, and what society mandated as a correct lifestyle. This is an adulterated love. At this point, I have lost touch and forgotten my First Love. I have become a resounding gong, a clanging cymbal. For though I may walk in faith, pray for the sick, tithe of my gifts, and of my increase, and whatever else may come along it boils down to the simple fact that  if I do all this, for any other reason than for the love of my Lord, it is in vain.

 

I challenge you as I do myself, to look at your life. Do you do, what you do out of a Sincere Love for your Lord? If not, then fast and pray, allow the Holy Spirit to guide you and interpret this as you will.

 

 

(for the sake of all involved, Mike Tuttleson is a fictional character)

 

 

 

 

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