Rains of Change Revisited

This is a post that I had written quite some time ago, actually in September of 2011. So as I was reviewing it, I realized it started that day! I now see the pieces coming together.

In Washington, we have a lot of experience with rain. However, we also enjoy the beautiful lush green color that goes with it! We know a refreshing rain is good for many things. One of those things is the freshness to the air we breathe. So, as I sat yesterday inside my cozy office, I was thinking about that. I decided to take a moment and I went outside to listen and to watch as the rains came down.

As I watched the rain and saw this little plant, I realized, or God chose to remind me, “so it is with our lives”. We need times of refreshing so that we can continue to grow and revive our weary souls. New beginnings so to speak; renewed every morning. We may decide on a different direction for our lives, a move, re-arrange our home or decor, or maybe even our change our schedules so that we CAN have more times for the soft rain of change to happen. It brings peace and calmness to our souls. You may be in a torrent of rain right now, but all the more important for you to really pray over these words for your life circumstances. Ask God to reveal Himself in the circumstances.

So here is what I felt as I watched the rain. I feel change coming. Have you ever had one of those seasons where you feel like something is about to happen and you aren’t sure what? You are kind of excited but not sure what God is up to? I have been living with this feeling for a long time. I feel God calling me to rely on the Holy Spirit for direction. I am in preparation for something yet unknown, but its going to be great! Crazy, huh? But…exciting!

I think that is the whole idea, though, don’t you? He wants us to live in expectancy of His next move or work. But we have to lay a foundation for that work before hand. Think about this…satan lays his groundwork before he plays out his full hand. Have you ever thought about that? He doesn’t just hit you with an attack. He has been laying ground work by planting doubt, discouraging you with circumstances, causing insecurities, hurt in relationships and anything else he can come up with. Then, before we know it, he is inside our door! One little chink in our armor and he will use that to turn your life upside down. Spend time with the Lord and let His refreshing rain fall over you and give you what you need when you need it. Use the Word to stand against it, pray always, so you are laying a solid groundwork!

What refreshing rains are falling on you?  What will you re-arrange so that you can have times of refreshing in your life? You see, 10 months later, I am finding out that there is a move in my future to a different home, and selling the home we have lived in for over three years. He is moving me into a different season and I am moving forward TOWARDS it as each day passes!

Funny isn’t it? No…not funny, but exciting to see the hand of God move in our lives and see all the pieces of the puzzle start coming together. God bless you as you throw the umbrella away and let the soft rains of change wash over you! Walking the journey with you…in the rain!

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What’s Your Aperture?

What do you allow to pass through your eye gates on a daily basis? Do you remember the scripture that talks about the eyes being the window to the soul? I was thinking about this again as our pastor made mention of the aperture of a camera in last Sunday’s sermon. I think it’s worth further thought.

Here is the definition of aperture:   aperture |ˈapərˌ ch ər| noun chiefly technical; an opening, hole, or gap : the bell ropes passed through apertures in the ceiling.• a space through which light passes in an optical or photographic instrument, esp. the variable opening by which light enters a camera.

Aperture allows you to specify how the camera chooses its settings when making an exposure, to give great creative control.  It controls sharpness or how much of your image is in focus. A photographer needs to adjust the amount of light that is allowed through the lens in order to get proper exposure and clarity. When a photographer is taking a picture that is in bright light, they will adjust the lens to a smaller opening so a diminished about of light is let in through the lens of the camera. If they need more light, then they will open up the setting of the lens to allow more light to come in to get the shot.

It’s a little different for us in our relationship with the Lord. The way a photographer adjusts the aperture for a picture, is not the same way we want to adjust the amount of God’s light we let in to our lives. The photographer is always in control of the outcome of the picture, depending on their artistic view and outcome they want. We also have control over how much of Him we let into our lives on a daily basis. We need to have an open aperture for the Lord, letting in as much of Him in as possible. The Holy Spirit needs a fully open lens also. Where we need to have the smallest lens opening is when we are among worldly things where the enemy will try to work. We do not want so much of the world in our view that it blinds our eyes to the things of God. We have to use a filter on our lens. That way, we can see more clearly, and the haze that the enemy wants to use, will be made clearer through our view finder.

Think of it like your eye. In a dark room your pupils are bigger, letting in more light so you can see better in the dark. In a bright area, the pupil is smaller and let’s less light in so you don’t get blinded by the light. With God, it is different. We want our God Lens to be open as wide as possible. If our lens is wide open to the Lord, He will help us see clearer, even in the dark. We want our Prayer Lens to be wide open to what God wants to place in our hearts. He wants us to focus like a telephoto lens on the future. That way, you don’t get distracted with your view of the situations up close to you. We have a tendency to look at things through a Macro Lens where we see every fault and wrong we or others, have ever done. But God wants to give you a different focus; one you can enjoy. How? Look through His lens. We need to have a wide open lens to see His beauty and His work, but focus on Him like the telephoto lens does for distance.

Several years ago, I felt like I was supposed to pick up my hobby of photography once again. In that process, God gave me a project a couple of years ago. I was to take a photo every day for a year and to share a thought about that picture on Facebook. I can’t begin to tell you the change that took place in me through that daily photo. I began to see things differently, I noticed things I hadn’t noticed before. He showed me things close up and far away. But, I began to see Life Through A Different Lens. His lens. That is the name He gave me to call the Project.

Today I am enjoy sharing the joy of photography with others as a source of encouragement. I want to have an aperture setting in my life that is wide open to God and the workings of the Holy Spirit. Full light, full sound, full relationship, and full vision. Go ahead. Get your eye gates open, or your camera out, get creative, look for the moment, and press the shutter button. Make a notation of the moments God shows you. You will be amazed, as I have been, how different you will begin to look at your life and what is going on around you. The camera will focus on what you aim it at. Aim for Jesus and the Holy Spirit. Watch your aperture settings. You will never be the same!