Owning IT!

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Taking your meditations of God’s word and allowing it to come ALIVE inside of you and then flow out of you, takes practice.

When you look at the stories throughout the bible and history of man and woman having deep encounters with the presence of God, it usually did not happen in a temple, synagogue or church. What you will see is man having a personal experience with the person and nature of God in a very ordinary, natural way. Take for instance Moses and his encounter with YHWH at the burning bush. (Exodus 3)

Moses’ encounter with the holiness of God is surely an external happenstance, but it is also an inner one. Immediately it changes Moses and drives him outward. This is what a deep inner experience should do for someone. One could call it a transcendent experience, but note that it is based outside in nature rather than inside of a synagogue or temple.

“Often it is in the open spaces of the ordinary world that the inner world is recognized and impacted.”

Immediately after Moses had his heart-stopping experience, YHWH said to him: “I have observed the misery of my people who are in Egypt. Now, go! Tell Pharaoh to let my people go” (Exodus 3:7, 10). Our Creator God has just given Moses an experience of an unnamable Presence, and it has an immediate impact on Moses, his family and his world. Rather than invite Moses to worship or attend a church service, God says, “Go make a difference, Moses!”

“The fire burned FOR him, then IN him, and finally THROUGH him.”

As Jesus was sending his disciples out into the community, He spoke, “And as you go, preach, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’ Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse the lepers, cast out demons. Freely you received, freely give.”  (Matthew 10:5-8)

As believers we have freely received so much and now we are admonished to go give it away!

Unfortunately, too many Christians have released themselves from this instruction and we have all have suffered as a result.   In avoiding our most basic need to give back, many of us have lost whatever we might have gained in our personal and private devotions with the Lord.

What would it look like for every follower of Christ to freely give love, kindness, encouragement, prayer and gifts to anyone who has a need? What would happen to our communities if each of us took to heart Christ’s words? I believe the answer lies in the stories of every man and woman that is recorded for us in the Holy Scriptures who believed God and then acted on it.

I encourage you today my friends, to give Christ away to everyone or anyone you encounter who has a need. In sharing what you have experienced and learned, you really own the Gospel message beyond what you ever imagined. The Good News comes alive for you and others! It is something real and tangible that people can taste, feel and see!  It is in the “giving away” that you are able to be recharged!

“God’s love is like an electric circuit; it never flows in just one direction.”

Allow it to flow through you, out of you and around you to the world you encounter daily. I promise you will grow and flourish personally, but you also will be changing history for the better! Our world needs God’s powerful love, grace and mercy to be shown through His people. We are called to be His witnesses!

Sadly, we see that many people know of no other way. No one told them about the wonderful alternative, a third way…..a BETTER way!

“You are the light of the world–like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden.” Matthew 5:14NLT

My prayer is that Christ’s followers will present the Gospel in a way that really changes people.

My Gateway to Love: Father, show me where to stand!

 

****This blog was inspired by the writings of R.Rohr – a mystic, a Franciscan friar, and a simple devotee of Christ

 

The Son Has Risen

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The Son

Any freedom I walk in is because of God’s grace.

It is not anything I have done except lean into Him and make Him my life….my essence!

The letter of the law nearly strangled me to death; my paltry obedience was never enough.

I was suffocating under its weight.

I was broken beyond repair……except for the CROSS!

He stepped down from the glory and came to save me; He left to come and find me.

He became my darkness; He took what was mine and gave me His.

He is my morning! He is my new beginning; He is my dawn.

And now I share in the brightness of His love and His power has reached me.

No longer forsaken, but received.

No longer a beggar, but a daughter.

It is out of my brokenness that He comes and shines through.

And now He says that I am altogether lovely

No stain or blemish found within.

I am forgiven. I am cleansed.  His mercies are new.

They have kissed with truth – righteous has sprung forth.

Good morning beautiful you, you are worth waking for!

 

A song of thanksgiving to my Beloved- L. Roitsch

Letting Go

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Last night’s sleep is fading away and my eyes are not yet in focus.

I sip my morning coffee alone in solitude.

As the hot liquid slides down my throat,

SHE enters the room.

 I take a deep breath and exhale slowly.

No longer is a child standing before me, but rather

an exquisite young creature who is erupting into womanhood.

 Gone is my rosy-faced toddler with bouncy yellow curls.

Long tea parties and fuzzy, stuffed animals are replaced with a

strong confidence and wisdom beyond her years.

Infectious laughter has given way to a voice that is filled

with steady determination and security.

 As she comes to me and gently places her head on my shoulder I notice how much she has truly grown.

Now taller than I, there is a stately quality to her that causes me to tremble.

 I lean back against the wall in wonder as I watch her prepare for her day.

Suddenly, hot tears fill my eyes and I quickly look down…embarrassed.

A tender moment for me and yet she doesn’t understand.

 Curiously she looks at me with a crumbled brow, shrugging her shoulders

Merely whispering a soft, “good morning” and then

she floats out of the room.

 Her golden tresses a muss as she brushes them away from her sleepy eyes.

I watch as she quietly leaves….

Long, slender legs that used to wrap themselves tightly around my waist in a bear hug.

Now they are grown and they will carry her into the fullness of what lies ahead.

 Yes, my little girl is becoming a woman and my heart is filled with equal parts pain and joy.

I sigh heavily and close my eyes….

Imagining the wondrous future that lies ahead for the two of us.

 

I wrote this poem over 10 years ago while watching our oldest daughter transition into womanhood.

This past week, we moved our 3rd and last daughter into her college dorm and I found myself with lots of emotions.  As I stretched up to hug my lil sunshine good-bye, I remembered this poem and its truths stung me again.

Raising children into adulthood is one of the most challenging and rewarding tasks there is.  Over the last 23 years, my husband and I have shed more tears than we knew we held but we have also laughed till our sides ached with immense joy!

Being a Mom has truly been one of the most rewarding experiences.  Don’t blink my friends, it will be over before you know it.  Enjoy the moment.

Much love…..Lisa Roitsch

 

 

 

Divine Romance

Divine Romance

Is It The Greatest Challenge on Earth???

My husband and I have been together for over 27 years with 3 grown daughters who are our delight and joy!

To say that our home and union has always been filled with unconditional love, peace and joy would be a false statement and would be deceitful. Marriage is hard work!  Two becoming one requires death, sacrifice and an unwavering commitment to the vows you proclaimed on your wedding day.  Some days are extremely painful and there can be feelings of rejection, anger and betrayal.  There are moments when you believe “I should have never married this person” and doubt can cloud everything sacred. Being married forces you to face some ugly character issues you would probably NEVER realize otherwise. But the good news is you are not alone and you do not lack the resources needed to restore and rebuild a marriage that is crumbling.

Strong marriages, Christian or not, will be struck by lightning – sexual temptations, communication problems, major frustrations and unrealized expectations. But I have concluded that if Christian marriages especially, are watered with the word and presence of Christ daily, then conditions will not be ready for a destroying fire to consume them and/or their families.

“If I am only married for happiness and my happiness wanes for whatever reason, one little spark will burn the entire forest of my relationship.” ~ Gary Thomas

One of the reasons that my husband and I have determined to keep our marriage together is not because doing so would make us both happy, and it hasn’t been because we did not want our kids to know the pain of divorce (because we certainly did not). The main motivation for keeping my marriage in tact is because of the vows I made to God the day I surrendered my life to Him.  Since one of my core values is based on proclaiming God’s message of love and reconciliation to the world, I realized that my marriage needed to reflect this truth.  How can I love mankind unconditionally and proclaim reconciliation to the world if my marriage is seeking to be dissolved and finished?

Putting my relationship with Christ first becomes the plumb line for everything else in my life to hang on. When pleasing my heavenly Father is more important than pleasing my spouse or myself, there is balance and order that can produce fruit that others can enjoy.  Not giving up when things get tough, and learning to lean into the pain of conflict and being misunderstood is a huge victory.  One that will produce life, growth and maturity.  Our old pastor used to teach us that marriage is a tool designed by God to conform us into the image of Jesus.  The choice is to allow the tool to be effective in our life or not.

I am convinced that God planted marriage among mankind in order to display the mysteries of His own eternal and spiritual existence. Marriage can become a vehicle that will catapult you into knowing your Creator in ways you never imagined and your life can be filled with deep purpose and satisfaction as you grow to know and love Him fully.  Let us take the challenge of “being fully enlightened to know Him and His calling” (Ephesians 1:18)

May we ever have before us the knowledge that our marriage is not just about “us” but about what God is building through and in us. It is about growing His kingdom on earth and displaying His forgiveness, love and redemption in all ways to all people.  I want my life, marriage and my children to be so fruitful that the world cannot not deny the goodness of God’s spirit living in and through us.  I want everyone who comes into contact with us to benefit from HIS life in us.  For where the kingdom of God dwells there is righteousness, peace and joy! (Romans 14:17)

Let us conclude with this thought: Perhaps the real purpose of marriage is not for my own happiness as much as it is for His holiness.

“Those who live should no longer live for themselves but for Him who died for them and was raised again.” 2 Corinthians 5:15

****I have read countless books on marriage but my all time favorite is “Sacred Marriage” by Gary Thomas.  If you are serious about your relationship with God and your spouse then get a copy today – read it together and pray daily for one another.  I promise you will not regret it!

With deep love and affection – Lisa

http://www.lisaroitsch.com

 

Fixing Our Eyes On Jesus, the Author and Finisher of Our Faith!

I have an eight year old Australian Shepard, who undisputedly, is the smartest dog I know.  When we purchased “Janie” all those years ago from a local breeder, it was because my daughters had been begging for a dog for a couple of years.  I finally relented, but considered that if I was to get a dog, I wanted a breed that was smart and would obey me!  So, I did lots of research and the general consensus of everything I read, stated that Aussie’s were one of the smartest dogs around.

After we picked Janie out of the litter and brought her home, the long, arduous task began of training this cute, furry puppy.  Guess who that task fell upon – you guessed it…… ME!  Although my girls tried their hardest to train and build relationship with their new family member, I noticed that little Janie followed me around the most and looked to me for all of her needs.  After all, I was the one feeding her, bathing her, cleaning her and buying her all those fun toys!  Therefore, I had officially become her new master!

Over the years, I have worked tirelessly in order to train Janie to be an obedient dog.  The main reason I was so concerned over this fact was that if I could get her to obey my voice instantly, I knew it would keep her safe when we were outside walking or jogging – something Australian Shepherds LOVE to do!  Since Aussie’s have lots of energy, sweet Janie needed to be walked every day.  The dangerous element of this would be is that Janie continually pulled herself out of her collar and leash to go chase cars, squirrels or little kids on bikes.  It took months, and months to break this very, bad habit.

Over the years, I have slowly weaned Janie off of her leash and now we can go anywhere and she will follow my commands by voice.  Over the past 3 years or so, as Janie has matured, and when we go for a walk, she will stay in step with me and keep pace without me having to guide her on a leash.  I trust her to listen to my voice and obey my commands.  After all, most of my commands are given to protect her and keep her safe.  I love her dearly and want to make sure she is protected and out of harms way.

Lately, I have noticed that as we are going on our walks, she is constantly looking up at my face.  Ready and waiting for me to guide her.  If she gets ahead of me, she will continually turn, pause, study my face and seem to wait on me so she doesn’t get too far ahead.  I have also noticed that I can communicate with her without using my voice.  I can look at her a certain way, tilt my head in the direction of a turn or snap my fingers, and she will know which direction to head in.  As our relationship has grown over the last 8 years, we know one another, and trust one another.  I trust her to listen, watch and wait for me and she trusts me to guide her in the correct direction of our daily walk.  It brings me great pleasure to know that Janie has developed a wonderful habit of studying my face in order to be told what direction to move in.

One day, before our daily walk,  I was reading Psalm 32, and I stopped short when I read verse 8.  In the previous verses, David had been pouring out his heart to God and then you see at the close of verse 7 the word, SELAH.  The word selah in Hebrew means to pause and/or meditate.  So, as David is pausing and meditating on what he has just said, God enters the conversation and  says, “I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will guide you with My eye”.  I slowed down and read this over and over many times until these words got down deep inside me.  My first response was, yes God, I want you to guide ME with Your eye!   And then my next thought was, how interesting and peculiar that God is able to guide His children with His very own eye – how does this work?

As I meditated on these verses over the days and weeks, one day it dawned on me!  Just as I am able to guide my furry, four-legged companion, Janie, with my eye and facial expressions, our Heavenly Father does the same for us.  The important part to understand in all of this is relationship.  Just as Janie and I have spent hours and hours together over the last 8 years, developing a close relationship, we must do the same with our Father God.  The more time we spend with God, studying His face, His nature, we know who He is and we learn to trust Him explicitly.  He is then able to guide us with His eye and move us in the direction we are go.  He loves to do this, in order to keep us safe and out of harms way.

My relationship with Janie has actually taught me a lot of great life’s lessons.  This one has been one of my favorites thus far.  The time I spent pouring into my relationship with Janie over the years has produced a beautiful connection between us.  We have a mutual understanding between us and she is completely devoted to pleasing me in all things.  I really believe that is the main reason why she studies my face, waiting for my eye to guide her.  She wants to please me because she loves me and trusts me.  She wants to do my will.  I am her master and she knows that I only have her best interest at heart.

I encourage you to read all of Psalm 32.  In the passage after verse 8, God exhorts us as His children to NOT be like the horse or the mule, who have no understanding; for they must be harnessed with bit and bridle, lest they will not come near.  God desires us to come near unto Him.  He wants to instruct us and guide us but, he is only able to do this to the degree we submit to Him and know Him.  When we spend time reading and treasuring His precious word daily, we become so familiar with His ways and thoughts.  It is then, that we can actually begin to feel His eye upon us, guiding us and moving us in His perfect will.

Study His face my friends, gaze into His beautiful eyes and allow Him to teach you. For in Him are all things beautiful and He is full of light!  Your path will never be darkened and you cannot stumble, for He will illuminate your path with the radiance of His glorious face.  His eye is ever on you!