Monday, December 29, 2008

Thanks for Chaos!

(This was written back in September.... I just never posted it, and ran acrossed it yesterday...and it blessed me all over again... at how God "sets things up"...Awesome!!!)

Sept. 14, 2008

I've had one of the most busy/ crazy/ stressful weekends this weekend, and I can't help but write to tell y'all how the Lord blessed me through it.

First of all, I know that I e-mail a lot talking about the Lord... but seriously it is because I just can't help but feel Him working on my behalf over my life. It's not that I'm crazy religious or super spiritual and go around passing out every time I feel Him.. ha! It's just simple everyday things, that make me step back in awe and say, "Lord.. that is You!".... and I just give thanks to Him. It's just that I've begun to completely yield my life to Him, and His promise is that He will supply all our needs according to His riches and glory in Jesus. Phil 4:19

I also relate well to this verse:"Like newborn babies, long for the pure milk of the word, so that by it you may grow in respect to salvation, if you have tasted the kindness of the Lord." 1 Peter 2:2-3

I can't tell you how much I have tasted the kindness of the Lord over the past 9 months... and just like the verse says, I can't help but long for the Truth that His Word reveals to me. Wow, I love the Word of God! I love God and the salvation He's given me through His Only Son. Gives me chills! Yep! I seriously, seriously relate to the joy Paul experience in Christ after he was converted.

So... on to my weekend... Wait a sec! I can see right now this may get lengthy. So... just go ahead and stop (you have my permission).... you may get up and refill your coffee cup... but ya gotta come back! LOL (In fact, I'm going to refill my coffee cup... ha!) So you can go too.. but come back, now!

Ok.. are ya back? I'm back too! I have a nice Hot cup of french vanilla coffee, that is just SO good! Mmmm!

Ok... NOW on to my weekend... My best friend from High School, Rebecca, was having her baby shower this weekend... it was scheduled for Sat. the 13th. Well, I've been planning and planning to go, but last weekend I had to make a unplanned visit to my hometown to go to the Orthodontist because one of my brackets had broken. Let me tell you, I aboslutely LOVE braces!!....NOT!! So, since I only get paid once a month, and all my bills are due at the beginning of the month.. I pretty much go a whole month without extra money. LOL. The joys of being a student. I keep telling myself that these are my humblilng years.

So, since I had to make that trip to the Orthodontist last weekend, that was the money I was going to use to go to my friends' baby shower. You don't know how much it hurt me to call her and tell her that I wouldn't be able to come. I could tell that she was disappointed, and that she had been excited to see me.

The next day, Rebecca texted me and told me that she wanted to give me money to come down. Now... I'm sad to say that my pride stepped in... and I told her that I didn't want her to pay for me to come to her baby shower. I was suppose to be the one giving her the gift, not her paying for me. Nope.. I didn't want her to do that. But she insisted... and eventually I said, Ok.

THEN! I wake up Friday morning and gas has sky-rocketed to $5 a gallon! No lie... and I call Becky, and I tell her that there is just no way.. It would be way to much money to borrow, and the truth was, I wouldn't have the extra money when I got paid to pay her back. So we were back where we started. It just killed my heart to know that I wouldn't go to my Best friends baby shower... I was her Maid of Honor in Her wedding.. but do to unchangeable circumstances, I had to miss her wedding.. and I just felt like the crappiest friend in the world to miss her baby shower too. You know? I mean, who wants to be friends with me? I miss all the major parts of their lives. Goodness...

So.. I prayed. I pray to the Lord to provide a way or either to grant peace over my heart to accept not going.

Y'ALL!!! At the very last minute.. and when I say last minute.. I mean last minute. My friend Jessi called me at work, and I smile to think that the family I work for wasn't there at the time, so I was able to answer my phone. Jessi... asked me if I was going to the baby shower, and I told her that I couldn't..but really wanted to. Well.. Jessi told me that she had been waiting to give me my birthday present (back from July..ha!)... and if I wanted her too.. she would give me it now.

Well.. I just felt the Lord over it.. and I told her that would be WONDERFUL! Jessi financially provided MORE than enough money for me to drive the 3 hrs (even with $5 gas) to the baby shower, and have some left over to get me through the rest of the month. Glory to Him! Right??........ Well...of COURSE!!! (Also, it must be NICE to be a nurse! *wink*wink*)

Nope... this isn't even over!!! Go take a potty break if you need to. It's ok...but come back! LOL

Ok... So now God has provided a way to go to the baby shower, but ..oh! you continue reading you'll see how He gave me so much more.. through the craziest of circumstances.

So, I go drive the 3 hrs and I go to my Papa's house. I had asked him if he would take my car up to Wal-Mart to have the oil change while Jessi and I went to the Baby Shower Sat morning. (I needed him to do this during that time, because I needed to head back to Augusta right after the baby shower, because I have a TON of work I have to do for school) Well.... Jessi and I go to the baby shower, and we have tons of fun... I collected lots of the necklaces for when people would use the "B" word.. baby, ha! It was tons of fun! Rebecca, however, she was having some mild contractions (she is due Oct. 1st)... so I went and spoke to her belly. I said, "Come on out, little man!!!" It was funny.. so all the throughout it, I loved on my dear friend and her family then I had to leave....

So when I got back to my Papa's house, I saw Papa..but I didn't see my car. UH OH!! BAD FEELING!! Well it turns out that the last time I had my oil change the guys at Wal-Mart in Augusta didn't do something right, and now my car is messed up and it is going to take a few days to fix it. WHAT?!?!?! ARE YOU KIDDING ME?? I HAVE TO GO BACK TO SCHOOL!!!! LORD? What am I going to do? Lord? I need you!

Well... good news.. Wal-mart is going to pay for all of it to fix my car.. because it was their mistake.. they had it on record that I had gotten my oil changed last there.. the mileage, THANKFULLY, added up correctly, so they KNEW it was them who made the mistake. (I'd tell you what it is that is wrong with the car.. but I don't speak in car language...ha!)

The bad news.. Miranda is without a car. NOT GOOD! So.. my grandpa had the solution for me to borrow my sisters car, and she would borrow his truck.. and he would pay for ALL of her gas in the truck. So I called my sister, and I was so grateful that she was ok with that... but of course... Satan, loves to torture me.... there was one problem with Danielle's car. She was riding around on a Doughnut... so she needed a new tire. SOOOO.. My Papa is just a Angel.. he really is... He told Danielle to come over right then.. and he would take her car to get a new tire..because.. I HAVE to have a way back to Augusta (and Papa's truck isn't an option for me because it's HUGE and only gets 12 mpg)

So... I'm thanking the Lord the entire time... but we go to three different tire places, and they are ALL out of the tire that matches Danielle's other tires. WHAT?!?!? Lord????? I need you!!!! I'm freaking out at this moment... and I hate to say that my flesh could have been revealed a bit... When I get stressed... I get impatient.. and I sometimes I can be a bit of a brat. Well.. I KNOW it was the Lord... because He spoke peace over my heart, and I didn't act the way I would normally act when things don't fall into place like I want them to.

I KNOW it was the Lord, because had it not been.. I wouldn't have been so patient with all the chaos around me. I mean, I NEEDED to leave.. I have homework to do! You know? >>> Let's stop, and praise Him for a second<<< Ha! I'm so serious.. Glory to Him!

Ok.. well the tire guy, must have seen the sorrow on my face (because although I may not be acting like it bothers me, I do tend to wear my emotions on my sleeves) He gave the suggestion that they could put another tire on the car that would fit it.. It just wouldn't be the same type as the other three. And I'm thinking to myself... What does it matter if it's a different brand? But that's what my sis wanted... so I called her.. and I praise Him that she was so gracious to say.. a differnt tire would be fine! Woo Hoo!!!!

Well... the Lord had to speak peace to my heart, because all of this had taken a long time... and I was so stressed out.. I had a headache... and I was tired, and there wasn't any way that I felt like driving the three hours back to Augusta. So... I had peace to just stay the night and leave this morning.

So.. when I settled down at my Papa's (he was going dancing.. and I was thinking that I would go take a hot bath.. LOL... but I had to try to do my homework).. Well.. after Papa left to go dancing.... I finally sit down to rest...and I get a phone call....

The caller Id said "Rebecca" on it..... Her husband had called me to tell me that Becky was in the hospital and that she was about to have the baby!!! WHAT?!?!?! (I SUDDENLY KNEW WHY EVERYTHING HAPPENED THE WAY IT DID!)

Bec's Husband was thrilled to know that I was still in town, because Becky had wanted me to be there. SO I went up to the hospital, and I got to go in and spend time with one of my all time best friends and enjoy the moment we've talked about since 7th grade together. And how sweet was it, that when that Baby came....while I was standing there, in my mind I prayed over him and his Mama. What a special moment!!!

Thanks goes to the Father, because had everything (as stressful as it was) not happened exactly the way it happened.. I wouldn't have came down to find that something was wrong with my car, and I would have caused irreversible damage (so that's one blessing).. but the best blessing is.. I wouldn't have been there to see my best friend holding her first child in her arms after delivery. Wow... those are the precious moments in life, that I've realized... you just have to Praise Him!

So He.. may allow us to have some stress with broken cars and non-available tires... but he allows it because He has something bigger and better that He wants us to experience....

So yes... I hope you can see why I e-mail lots about Him. I e-mail lots about HIm, because He is so good.... and there are things that happen... to where He is the only thing that makes sense.... SO yes.... I PRAISE HIM!

And.. Lastly, Since all this happened... I stayed here in my hometown for the night, and I wasn't able to go to church this morning because I have to journey to Augusta in a little bit.... but how wonderful that He allowed me a good night's sleep.. so that I could wake up early without being tired.. to write this out to you.... so that you can see the Grace He bestowed upon me this weekend. What an awesome God?!?! Just Awesome!!!! SO this is my way of praising Him on His day....

And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. Romans 8:28


Wednesday, December 10, 2008


Hey y'all!! I just wanted to let y'all know that IT IS OFFICIAL..... I will be an intern for CMT...yes, Country Music Televison...up in Nashville, TN!!! WOW!!! This is so crazy.... and I was elated when the lady, Cinnamen, told me that they chose 15 interns for the spring and I'm one!! I'm one of two interns in the Radio dept! The Lord... is the only thing that makes sense to me, as to why they chose me. I am so Praising Him right now!!! Wow, do dreams really come true? Wow... bless Him.

I actually applied for the Summer, and they accepted me for Spring, I start Monday, Jan 9th!!.... everyone that I spoke with told me to not turn it down and accept it for the Spring. So I did!!! I decided that, if need be, I would postpone graduation for a semester. The plus side to that would be I acutally would get to "walk" across the stage to get my degree.... if you graduate in December, there is no ceremony, you just get it mailed to you. So...if that's the case and I have to push graduation back... my family would be honored to watch me do that. But, there is still a possiblity that I could still graduate this December. So, we'll see.

But wow!! I called my Mama... and after the excitement calmed down, she then proceeded to say, "Well.. you better stop picking your face (what I do when I'm stressed) and watch your figure and make sure you remember to pack your winter clothes when you move up there it's colder in TN in January".... doesn't she sound like a Mom? Goodness... it'll never change. Ha! I love her!!!

Wow, my head is SWIMMING!!!!! I have no clue which way is up or down. Ha! Now comes the fun part... getting all the necessary things in credits... school classes moved... financial aid... and I have to find somewhere to live! If any of you know of anyone who has a spare room, let me know! Wow.. just think.. in one month I will be interning with CMT. I can't believe I will be up there in one month!

Here is the rundown!!I get there on the 9th at 9am... From 9-12.. I meet with the head for orientations!Then at noon.. I'll meet with my supervisor!! AND... have lunch with him/her!!!Then... the fun begins!!

Also, I have to throw this out there... Spring interns are expected to go and help out with the CMT AWARDS SHOW!!!! (Because it's in the spring) Shoot.. expected?.... I'm there!!!! Ha!! How cool is that?!?! I'm just freaking out! Thanks so much!!! God is so wonderful, and I give all the glory to Him!!!! He is so Good!!! Bless Him!!! Love, Miranda

P.S. Below is what I'll be doing.....

CMT Radio Networks Openings: 1Preferred number of days needed: minimum of three per week/16 hours per week.Preferred major(s): Communications, Journalism, Radio Broadcasting (Juniors or Seniors only)

Special Skills: Some knowledge of radio production and equipment, good writing skills, strong computer skills, good organizational and interpersonal skills, ability to productively conduct internet research. Good communications skills are required.

Job Description: Intern will assist in the preparation of CMT Radio Network’s daily prep sheet. Will compile information for special features, and may be involved with writing stories and sound editing. Intern will organize artist interview schedules and will help coordinate prouder schedules. Spring interns will assist with coverage of awards shows. Intern will shadow artist interviews, will have exposure to artist management and will shadow covering music news events. Intern will have interaction with various other departments of MTVN, including the Music & Talent department, and programming. Candidate will also be exposed to personnel at all Nashville-based record labels, artist management teams and with some country music artists.

Department Profile: The CMT Radio Networks team compiles a daily news prep sheet, designed to serve radio morning shows at more than 120 country music radio stations nationwide. They arrange artist radio tours for affiliate radio stations. They produce 12 monthly specials per year and 8 quarterly specials per year. CMT Radio Networks serves to further the CMT brand as being first in country music news coverage, and it helps promote CMT programming to over 40 million radio listeners daily.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

CMT-Nashville Internship!!!!

Hey y’all!!! I just got a phone call that rocks my socks off!!!

I applied for an internship for CMT in Nashville two weeks ago! I never would have expected to hear back from them…. and to hear back from them so soon! They offered me an internship position for the Spring!!! However, I actually applied for the Summer …. I told them that if it couldn’t be transferred to the Summer then I am all theirs for the Spring!! This is an opportunity that would be worth pushing graduation back a semester to intern at CMT-Country Music Televison in Nashville, TN!!!! My dream! I am beyond myself, you’ve got to know!!!!

You have to know that I am praising the Lord! He is so worthy, and He is so so good!!!! Psalm 20:4 says “May He give you the desire of your heart and make all your plans succeed.”

But above that, this scripture just blesses me… “DELIGHT YOURSELF IN THE LORD and he will give you the desires of your heart!!!” Psalm 37:4
Wow.. I am just ecstatic!!!! I’ve done probably 25 flips in my living room… not kidding!!!!!

Bless the Lord, O my soul; and all that is within me, Bless His Holy Name!!! Psalm 103:1 AMEN!!!!!!

(The Casting Crowns Song "Who Am I" just blesses me!! The lyrics

"Who am I?... that the Bright and Morning Star would choose to light my way".... Amen!!! He is the Great I AM... and I am His!! Whew!!!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Feeling Joy!!!

It’s Thanksgiving Day, the bustle of the day’s activities have dwindled. My Mama is over at her house settling down and getting ready for bed. My sister is up at the hospital cherishing her precious baby girl swaddled in tubes and monitors. My Papa is at the next door neighbor’s house eating Thanksgiving dinner with them, and I am here at Papa’s house in the quiet. It’s amazing… I complain about living by myself all the time… yet whenever I’m around people… I somehow always end up drifting off by myself.

I was sitting on the couch reading a book that has Bible teachings in it (just a few minutes ago), and my heart was embracing every word as I shifted from the book to my Bible. God’s Word is just so special to me. I think the reason I always end up by myself is because that is when the Lord chooses to speak to me. And not to just speak to me, He chooses to have a conversation with me and I find Him in my heart the most. I know that Christ dwells in us once we accept Him...and truly…tonight I FEEL Him there. I FEEL Him here… I FEEL Him with me....He is tangible, for sure. :)

I think it is the sweetest feeling in the world. It really just makes me have this feeling that gives me chills, makes me want to just bawl, yet at the same time just dance all around my living room. Whoever might think the Lord is not One who will be your company, hasn’t ever experienced Him. I’m coming to feel His presence more and more each day, and it is absolutely WONDERFUL! Especially now. :)

I think that it is so awesome….even through prayer. Use to be....on special days like today, my family would have someone bless our meals. God was never “out of the picture,” but He definitely wasn’t the center... and for sure.. I didn’t have a relationship with Him. I mean… two years ago, I would always look at the ground when someone would ask “Who wants to say the blessing?”.. NOT ME!!!! In fact, sometimes someone would squeeze my hand as a prompting to get me to volunteer. Nope… i wouldn't.. they could squeeze all they want, my mouth was staying shut. Even when I was Chaplain in my sorority (and it was my position to pray).. When asked to bless the meal at our formal I refused and had someone else do it. Well now... on this side of salvation.. Now I don’t mind. In fact, I enjoy it, because I enjoy inviting the Lord to supper. I enjoy blessing His Holy Name and making Him known...especially to my family.

It just ruined me… when my niece “expected” it and was eager to pray. Just flat out ruined me. I was a teary-eyed mess. AND…there isn’t anything more challenging than trying to NOT cry, when your just so incredibly blessed to tears.

It just takes one person to invite Jesus to the table. I also think it is awesome that it just takes one person to invite Jesus into the room or the conversation or the moment. Colossians 4:5 &6 says,

“Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.”

It is incredibly awesome that my family will bring up the Lord whenever I’m around. I’m not saying, it’s because of me… I mean, I pray that they talk about Him even when I’m not around. All I’m saying, is they didn’t use to mention Him as often as they do when I’m around…now. But, whenever they choose to bring Him into the conversation… you can bet I don’t miss a beat!!! It brings me so much JOY to glorify His Name…. and you can bet I am just busting at the seams whenever I get the chance to praise Him in front of my family….by their own initiation of the subject!!! Yes, it brings me great joy to bring Him great joy… which in turn, sows joy into the hearts of others...including my family.

Ah, Yes…….Joy…. Did you know that the word joy can be read over 150 times in the Bible!!! What’s cool? I've learned that the Greek word for joy is chara, which means exceeding gladness. (busting at the seams, leaping, shouting, uncontrollable laughter, tears!!) In a Bible Study, Beth Moore teaches that it is where your heart just swells with gladness where you can literally feel your heart swelling with joy. Joy is both a noun and a verb. However, focusing on chara, it is a noun… which means IT IS tangible. Isn’t that AWESOME?!?!?! Tangible, the dictionary has a definition that I love. It says “real or actual, rather than imaginary of visionary.” I'm looking at it this way… when someone encounters “joy” in the Bible (and there is A LOT of it!)… it’s not just reading it.. It’s experiencing it.. It’s REAL, it‘s definite, it‘s possible to touch!! You’re able to literally feel it!!!!!

Same thing when you allow the joy that you receive from scripture to spill over onto everyday life…. You’re able to experience the joy of the Lord… and not just experience it as a casual encounter .. You’re able to FEEL it.. You’re able to FEEL Him!!! WHEW!!! Yep.. I'm in LOVE!

I’m able to FEEL Him….. oooohhhh.. so awesome. The promise is found in His Word....

"Draw near to God and He will draw near to you..." James 4:8

It's a promise....Yep...Go on now...find out for yourself!!!

I'm so thankful today... on this Thanksgiving Day... that I'm able to FEEL the Lord's charis....greek for grace. I'm able to feel His grace, which, in turn, causes joy. Therefore, I literally feel the joy of the Lord. AMEN!!!

Love y'all! Happy Thanksgiving!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

For His Glory

“…He guides me in paths of righteousness for His name’s sake.” Psalm 23:3

I am currently sitting in very comfortable but still funky chair on the 3rd floor of the Reese Library at Augusta State University. I am in the very back of the library (behind the stacks) where it is just eerie quiet, but... I LOVE it. It is soooo peaceful. To my immediate left (on the desk of my little cubicle that I’m sitting in)… I have 14 books that reflect around the philosophy studies of Plato. To my upper left I have my notebook for my Media, Law, and Ethics class with the syllabus that explains the 8-10 page research paper that is due exactly one week from today. To my upper right…. Is a “sample paper” of how the research paper should flow…. And in the center of it all….right up under the computer’s monitor… is my Bible. *deep breath in*…ahhh… God’s Word.

He’s the center comfort of what should be a super stressful time, and what am I doing? I’m writing about something that has nothing to do with the philosophy of Plato, nor does it have anything to do with helping those 8-10 pages of that research paper come to life. But I tell you, I may be in a college campus library…. But you should know… I am not sitting at a computer in a library… I am sitting at the feet of my precious Savior… I may have ten million things due next week, but I am called to sit as His feet for a moment, with everything set aside, because I have the empowered sense to give Him some praise and glory…. Yes, right in this moment.

I’ll also have you know that when I took my hair down from my pony tail just a second ago…a beautiful fragrance filled my lungs. Yes… the fragrance comes from washing my hair…. I mean, I do praise God for shampoo… but the fragrance from my hair reminds me of when the sinful woman from the Gospels washed Jesus’ feet with her tears and then she wiped His feet with her hair. Then she proceeded to pour perfume from her alabaster jar onto His feet. I mean, Jesus’ loves a woman who sits at his feet (with long hair that smells good, so...therefore, He loves me!)….I mean, ya know….I’m JUST sayin’! *wink*wink*

I’ve had so many of you e-mail me wanting to know how the Pamper Me weekend went and how my testimony went. I cannot tell you how much I was blessed this past weekend. Surely you should know… my cup is definitely overflowing. I find it so wonderful that last year after Pamper Me; I left the event and couldn’t get Jesus off my mind…. And this year after Pamper Me… I left the event and I STILL can’t get Jesus off my mind. But that is okay with me, because He is right where He should be. Amen? AMEN!!!!

I have to tell you that the Lord did a work in and through me this past weekend. All I did was tell my testimony of what Christ has done in my life, but somehow He used it to be bigger than I could have imagined. All for His Glory, that is for sure. Wow… I can’t possibly explain to you how it felt to have women walk up to me and pour their hearts out to me…. I can’t tell you how wonderful it was to pray with so many women there and in the Name of Jesus, ask that He would touch their hearts and continue to strengthen their souls. I can’t tell you how wonderful it was to stand in the back of a full room with a precious sister in Christ, and Praise the Lord as “Amazing Grace... My chains are gone” echoed in the presence of a full room, …but at the same time sense the stillness of just the three of us. God, that precious sister, and myself. Awesome. I have chills.

But the most wonderful feeling came from having a woman walk up to me and cup her hands over my cheeks, looking me directly in the eyes with her eyes glazed over with tears and telling me that she saw Jesus in me. Wow. Never would I have imagined. Bless Him. Bless Him. I praise Him, it’s all to His Glory.

Wow. God is so good. WHEW! God is so good. CAN I JUST TELL YOU THAT GOD IS SO GOOD!!!!!! Throughout this past year, I have prayed that He would use me for His glory in any way that He wanted to. I’ve told Him over and over that I give myself to Him as an offering and that it is my prayer that He would direct that offering in anyway. Wow, He does. I have to tell you that when you are completely willing to just give your life to Christ, He really does take it. It’s His life after all; we’re just along for the ride. What an awesome ride this past year has been, and it is all because last year around this time I met Jesus.

I MET JESUS. I didn’t just meet Jesus either, I became engaged to Him. When we find Jesus, we should change. When we come to know Jesus, we should change. When we’re willing to live for Jesus, we should change. When we come face to face with Christ, our entire mindset, perspective, and outlook on life should change….. and the neat thing, it changes all for His glory. It is no longer about us in this world, but we are humbled to know that it is about Him and His glory and how He wants us to be in the world, but NOT of it. Everyone who is in the world, AND OF the world, should see the difference in us as Christians. I use to get upset if someone thought I was weird… but you know what…. it’s okay if I’m weird…because IF I’m weird...then, I’m weird for Jesus. That’s just fine with me. :)

(Pause for a second!!!! I just had a guy walk behind me, and he told me that I smelled good!!! HA!!!!!!!!!! Then he looked at me “weirdly” because I started laughing! Ha! Ooohhh!! If he only knew….. that’s the aroma of Christ. I’ll say!! *wink*wink*)

Ok, back to being weird. Oh wait, I think I was done with that. Moving on. I’ve seemed to have gotten off from what I was originally talking about.

Yes, God changed me this past year through the sacrifice of His Son and the filling presence of the Holy Spirit in me, and I was able to share that this weekend. He showed up, that’s for sure. I met so many wonderful women and blessings came down in showers, no no… they came down in waterfalls… (I can’t think of a better word for water being poured heavily)…..because He used me to bless them, but in turn…. They blessed me. He blessed me. I blessed Him. Wow. Just a sharing of blessings. That is too cool!!!! Did I mention that God is sooo Good!!!!!

I was so humbled to be His servant this past weekend, and I was so thrilled at the Huge response for His glory through so many women of all different ages. Isn’t it wonderful that age doesn’t matter when it comes to Jesus. Isn’t it so sweet that I was able to hold up a 40-yr old woman as I prayed with her… just as if I was holding up my 4-yr old niece? Age doesn’t matter when it comes to loving Christ and praying to Him.

The weekend continued and my testimony was told and it was soon over, but the impact that God made just moved mountains. I mean, He was just so incredibly powerful through all the speakers there. Our Heavenly Father used each lady at that retreat to glorify Jesus. That’s exactly what happened, and I’m so thankful and honored to have been able to have the opportunity to serve Him in the most awesome way.

“For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”

To think that God had this planned all along, He knew from the moment He said, “Let there be light”… that many years later on Dec. 8, 2007 a 21-year-old girl named Miranda would yield her life to Jesus Christ… and on Nov. 7, 2008…He would allow a 22-year-old growing disciple for Christ… named Miranda to bring glory to His name through the infiltrating power of the Holy Spirit. And it just fills me up to know that He loves me so much, allowed me to have the opportunity to shed my praise for Him, and I can just imagine God looking down and seeing “that it was good.”

“…And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge- THAT YOU MAY BE FILLED TO THE MEASURE OF ALL THE FULLNESS OF GOD.” Ephesians 3:17-18

How awesome?!?! We have the opportunity to live full lives, full in the fullness of God. Don’t cha want to do that????.... Yes, I want to do that.

“For from Him and through Him and to Him are all things. To Him be the glory forever! Amen”

I hope you know how much I love y'all.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Questioning or Trusting

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting. Psalm 139: 23-24

Ever since I surrendered my heart to God, I’ve been focused on living in His reflection. I seem to look at everything with different eyes. I seem to hear things with different ears. I’ve also become very mindful of my actions, my words, even my thoughts. The more time I spend in the Word of God, the more I find myself harbored in its pages, absorbing the comfort of His promises.

It is said that this life can take us from deserts, to valleys, to the foot of the mountain, to the top of the mountain, and then back down into the desert. Lately, I think I’ve traveled through each area; however, when I get to the foot of the mountain…I have difficulty getting to the top. In the midst of climbing, it seems as if I keep grabbing the loose rocks that cause me to slip and sometimes anxious thoughts of falling are revealed.

I researched “rock-climbing” to see if there was an appropriate term for the parts of the rock that you’re suppose to grab in order to pull yourself up. Well, I got sidetracked when I read that it is wise for rock climbers to climb in pairs to utilize a safety system. This is how it works: one person will keep climbing while the other person “belays” (manages and controls the safety rope attached to the climber so that if the climber were to fall, he/she wouldn’t fall very far.)

I know you can see where I’m going with this, but hold on a second….it gets better. I also learned that rock climbing is a sport that tests a climber’s strength, endurance, agility, balance, and the climber’s mental control. So… that got me to thinking. Well, if I’m the climber striving to reach the summit, and the Lord is my partner who is belaying, then why is it that can’t I seem to make it up the mountain? Then I remembered what the Lord spoke over my heart a few nights ago.

I must tell you that I look forward to praying right before I go to sleep. I have different prayers each night, but there is always one request that never changes. I’m always praying for God to search my heart, to refine me and remove all my impurities that don’t allow His reflection to show through. I think an objective for all Believers is to be able to reveal the image of Christ, and it is a constant request I make each night.

Well, a couple of nights ago, I had a heart to heart with God while I was praying. I broke down and questioned God’s motives for my circumstances. I just had to tell Him where I stood over a certain situation and that I couldn’t help but wonder why things revolving around this situation kept crumbling. I just didn’t understand. I pleaded for Him to either deliver me from the situation or hold me up, because I was becoming discouraged in what to do next.

After a moment of being still, the Lord spoke very clear to my heart. He told me that He was fulfilling my request and pulling to surface the ungodly ways of my heart. Then it was as if He was questioning me, “Miranda, why do you ask for me to refine you… then ask me to deliver you from the process of refinement? Do you not trust that that this momentary affliction is preparing for you an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison? (2 Cor 4:17) Once the dross is removed from the silver, does the silversmith not have material for a vessel? (Proverb 25:4) Can I just tell you that I really didn't like it when the Lord questioned was very convicting. I wanted to do to Him what I do to my Mama when I cause her to question me. I wanted to hug His neck, sit in His lap and say I'm sorry a million times.

He then reminded me that in order for dross to be removed from silver, the refiner must first place the silver over the fire so that it may be melted down. Then when the silver is no longer in an unyielding state, the dross or the impurities will rise to the surface. The refiner can then burn away the dross, which leaves the silver pure and allows the image of the refiner to reflect from it.

Wow... The Lord sure knows how to stand you upright, doesn't He? So just like the goal for the sport of rock climbing, my challenges in the climb are there to test my strength, endurance, agility, balance, and faith. Then when those anxious thoughts, offensive ways, and areas of sin in my life rise to the surface and cause me to lose balance… that gives God the opportunity to burn them away, so that He may mold me into the vessel He wants me to be and I may be led in the way everlasting.

But if the climb becomes long and difficult to endure, God is so gracious to have sent us His Son to be our partner who belays while we climb up the mountain. As long as we put all of our trust in Him and let Him control the rope that attaches us together, we can climb without ceasing…..even when it’s hard and even when the loose rocks we grab cause us to slip, we can persist with faith…because His Word tells us that the promises of God are “Yes” and “Amen” in Christ (2 Cor 1:20), and He is the One who Saves us from falling. Praise Him...for He is Good.

The "Light" at the Traffic Light!

Friday, August 29, 2008

Do you know those times when you're riding around, the weather is just perfect, not too hot... a nice breeze.... the sun is setting.... so you are just excited to ride with the windows down? (It's the end of the day, so you don't care if you wind up with windblown hair, Amen?)

So you just ride around listening to the radio and enjoying the end of the day....beginning of the weekend and just relaxing. Well, this was me a little while ago. I was riding around thinking about lots of things, and while I was thinking I was listening to an audio Bible Study that was speaking about what seemed to be going on in my life currently.

Do you ever have those moments, where you're going through something and after you FINALLY bow down and present your request to God, you'll recieve a devotional, hear a song on the radio, or listen to something in Church that seems to be speaking right to your heart? I LOVE THAT!!!! That seems to happen to me all the time!!!! I'm smart enough to know by now that it's not coincidence... it's PROVIDENCE!!!

So I was really "in tune" listening to my Bible Study and lining my heart up with God's, when I pulled up to a traffic light and I stopped. (Cause that's what ya do....ha!) You'll know exactly what I'm talking about when I say.... the proper procedure is to pull up to the red light, stop, and then you look at the car next to you to see who has followed the law with you. Right?*wink*wink* OF COURSE!! WE all do.... it is just about impossible to stop at a traffic light and not glance at who is beside you! HA! You just can't do it. Curiousity is our nature, I'm almost postitive I don't stand alone on that. HA! So there I was stopped at the traffic light and I looked to the right of me, and there was this pickup truck with two older gentlemen in the truck. They looked like they had just came back from construction work or something.

Well, when I made eye contact with them, I immediately looked away (again, that's what we do.. we look and then hurry and turn back! LOL). So I was engaged back into what I was listening to... and I couldn't help but let my womanly presumption take over... "should I roll my windows up?...Those guys are really close... I don't know if they are...but I can just feel them staring at me....but I then ignored those thoughts... I just kept looking forward... waiting patiently for the light to turn green.

Then I heard, "Ma'am... pssst....Ma'am....Excuse me? Ma'am?"

It was the guys next to me. And you can bet.... my presumption set back in and the first thing that crossed my mind... "I sure hope their not going to try and flirt with me and say some crazy pick-up-line." So I hestitated as I turned my head to look back at them.

Once they had my attention....Then the driver said, "Ma'am... who is that preaching?"....

(THEN I GOT EXCITED!!!).... I smiled and said, "It's Beth Moore"

(Enter into conversation- the second guy in the passenger seat)

"Beth Moore?" "Yeah, she is an awesome Bible teacher!! I'm studying how to LIve BEYOND myself, ha ha!, It's VERY Awesome, I LOve studying God's Word and applying it to my life!"

The second guy, "You're a Christian?..... I think I'm a Christian too."

*PAUSE!!!! When the passenger said I THINK I'm a Christian too,I ALMOST WET MY PANTS, I got so excited!!!!

I immediately knew the Lord stopped us at this red light together for His glory!!!!!!! Bless Him!!! He just makes me stand in awe at how He makes things happen!!! I knew that this was one of those times that would bless Him and me! He's SO Good!!!*

So I said back to the men, "I asked Jesus to come into my heart almost 9 months ago and He has turned my life around for the better, and I found out how to live abundantly through Him, He's just amazing!"

Then the light turned green and it was time to drive on, and the guy hollered..... "I'll have to look into that!!!" and while we drove side by side for a second as we were starting to get going, I hollered back... "Y'all do that!!! Blessings!!!!"

It all took a matter of maybe a minute, but I was able to sow a seed at the traffic light. I must say that I have witnessed to people in lots of different places, but a traffic light was a first for me. I would have never expected that to be a God-moment.... had I not been willing to take a moment to listen to them.

It just makes me stand in awe at how the Lord perfectly places everything together when He knows He is going to make a stir somewhere!! I almost didn't ride with my windows down, but looking back...I remember just feeling like I had to.. that it would feel good to me... and I usually take another route home, but today I took a differnt route... It's just amazing to me how he "sets" it all up. I

t also makes me just melt when I think about this...when we're open and willing to be a light for Him, and offer ourselves completely to Him for that reason, He REALLY does use us. He uses us to shine the light in us to others, and that is just awesome!! We're REFLECTORS!!! Reflectors of His image! So that people will see us and ask us questions... much like the gentleman did tonight!! I was so incredibly blessed, and I pray that those gentleman are drawn to seek His face more and more!!!

So.. next time you're at a traffic light... and you make eye contact with the other person... before you're quick to turn your head... smile at them, and if the window is down... make conversation..... you'll never know where it will lead!!!!

For God, who said, "Let light shine out of darkness," made His light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ." 2 Cor4:6 (NIV)

Remember, our Message is not about ourselves; we're proclaiming Jesus Christ, the Master. All we are is messengers, errand runners from Jesus for you. It started when God said, "Light up the darkness!" and our lives filled up with light as we saw and understood God in the face of Christ, all bright and beautiful." 2 Cor 4:5-6 (The Message)

Love y'all lots!!!

In His Light,

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Patience Waits

Sunday, Augusta 24, 2008

I waited patiently for the Lord; he turned to me and heard my cry. Psalm 40:1

I went home over the weekend to visit my family. Today is Sunday, so naturally I had to drive back to my apartment in my college town tonight. It use to be that when I'd get ready to go, my 4 year old niece would start to cry (and occasionally she still will)… but she would ALWAYS cry when I got my things together to drive back.

It was about 5 o'clock this afternoon when I gathered my things to go home...I had been waiting for the rain to pass… and finally it had stopped, so it was time to head out. Natasha, my niece, had just awakened from a nap. So I gathered her tightly in my arms and began to kiss all over her darling little face and I said, "Aunt Ran has to go now."…. She said calmly, "Ok, Aunt Ran…I love you."… No tears.

Now, it's not that I wanted her to cry for me…. after all, I don't want to make my baby sad… it's just that when she cries... I KNOW that I'm still wanted there.

Well, I went to hug my Mama goodbye, and she hugged me back and told me the usual… "drive safely". Well… THAT WAS IT… no one was going to cry over me. So guess what…. I BEGAN TO CRY!!!!

I just started to weep, and I fell back into my Mama's arms and I told her how much I didn't want to go back to school. Then the truth of my life came pouring out. I cried in my Mama's arms and I told her how I'm just DONE… I'm SO tired of school; I'm getting so burned out…. I've already been in school 17 years of my life, and although I've got just one more year left... JUST ONE MORE left… I'm so ready to be finished.

It's not that I want to stop… I don't, I WANT TO FINISH...I WANT my degree… I just WANT it to be NOW….

After I gathered myself together I hugged my mom and my niece again (because, if you're from the South.. a goodbye isn't a goodbye unless you've hugged a minimum of three times. ) Then I went and got in my car…. And before I could go I had to just talk to God. It was DIRE that I let Him know where I stand. So I began to pray to Him. After I felt content again, for the most part, I turned the key in the ignition and then I backed out of the driveway…..honked my little horn to say "goodbye" ONE more time…. and began my three hour drive back to my apartment. And on my drive back…. God responded to my cry.

I must tell you, I had the most Brilliant idea of getting an audio Bible Study, because it just ROCKS on my long drives. So, I'm listening to a Beth Moore Bible Study called Living Beyond Yourself... it's awesome. But, what's more AWESOME, the Lord used the message today to speak to me.

Beth's been teaching over Galatians 5:22 But the fruit of the spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.

The lesson today was over Patience…..and, wow.... let me tell you,… that is the flavor of the fruit that has been sour instead of sweet in my life. I'm just gonna be honest, I am an impatient person. In fact, when I heard this message today, I KNEW I wanted to write about it, because it was convicting and blessing me both, and I KNEW I had to write my thoughts about it…
AND DO YOU KNOW that the Lord had THE NERVE…. To give me the urge to "write" about this…30 minutes into my drive!!!!!! I still had 2.5 hours of driving to go, and here I was about to pop, because I was just itching to write my thoughts down, but I had no choice, HE was MAKING me wait!!!!

Patience……was the lesson He was speaking over me.

I want you to check this out with me….By doing some research (from my mental notes that I took in my head)….. I've learned that there is a Greek word that translates into the English word patience… the Greek word is Hupomone which has a meaning of inspired by hope. Isn't that awesome?!?!? Patience that is INSPIRED BY HOPE!!!!

There is another important Greek word that Beth taught over called makrothumia, which is patience inspired by mercy (which is the one, in context, is the type of patience that is require in the Fruit of the Spirit). But in my case and the one that is most often associated with patience… the one that spoke to me was Hupomone.

After researching ... I've learned that Hupomone is perseverance, endurance, and putting up with different circumstances because we know that there is some type of beneficial expectation, so it inspires us to endure….to press on.

Do you LOVE that?!?!.... Well, it's gonna get better…hold on to your horses for a second…When you relate that with the Lord it just BLOWS you away. It did me!!

The Lesson referenced back to the testing of Job. Job had the patience inspired by hope… as we remember in Job 19:25, Job states "I KNOW that my Redeemer lives, and he goes on to say in Job 23:10… that when He [the Lord] has tested me, I will come forth as gold.

So, when I heard that, I remembered the analogy of a Refiner and gold. I remembered that I'm still in the refiner's fire. I WILL BE FOR A WHILE!! In fact, I may not ever get out of the fire until the returning of Jesus. In fact, I don't want to get out of the refiners fire until I see a reflection… but if I see MY reflection in the gold…. I know I'm not finished yet….. His work won't be finished in me until I look into the gold and see Jesus staring back at me. Until I see THE REFINER'S reflection!!! Isn't that great stuff?!?!?

So, going back to my lack of patience......and relating it to what the Lord is speaking over my personal situation with school. …. He speaks James 1:4 to me.

Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.

Did you catch that with me? Time makes us mature and complete. Perseverance calls for patience… hupomone is inspired by hope….the practice of patience helps us to persevere in circumstances, which allows us to complete something that has been lacking in us.

I know that I am READY to graduate and move on with the next step of my life… but God wants me to know that He has set this year before me for a reason. A Godly purpose. Who knows what He has planned for me…..but I've been given the inspired hope to know that His will….will be done.

Now, just because I've written this... doesn't mean that I feel 100% more patient about getting through this next year. After all, it takes "practice." That is because society today doesn't know what it's like to just wait. In fact, WAITING is the hardest work we've ever done. But we must never think for a moment that our "waiting" is just idle…. God has chosen us all for something bigger and "He who began a good work will be faithful to complete it" Phil 1:6. We have to just do the work of being still and trusting God to lead us in His path to righteousness. There is a season for everything, and I have a strong feeling that this season of waiting will be building my character in Christ more. In fact…I'm convinced.

I've learned over the past 8 months that we have to look to the Holy Spirit to guide us in every situation. Particularly in this situation, because the world has lost all sight of patience….. just look at the self-checker outers and the pay-at-the-pump gas stations. It's funny…even with the convenience of those we still will tap our foot if we have to wait in line. Convenience never produces character…. The Fruit of the Spirit does ….we just have to have patience to continue on…to persevere. As you know, we consider blessed those who have persevered. James 5:11
I said in the beginning that before I left my Mama's house, it was storming and I was waiting for the rain to pass. How PRECIOUS is the Lord to reveal Himself to me, to touch my heart in such a wonderful way!! Because…I'll tell you, I waited for the rain to pass, and as I was driving…the Lord blessed me with the beauty of a Rainbow.

So it is best to have patience and just go through the season…because when it finally passes…. The Rainbow of the Lord will shine through, and we shall be blessed.

Therefore, as God's CHOSEN people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and PATIENCE. Col. 3:12

There was a Noble King...

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Do you remember the childhood song "The Noble Duke of York"… (I never knew the name of it, but I googled it just a second ago…and it appears to be the correct title...Ha!)

Although the song would probably start "The Noble Duke of York, he had ten thousand men…" I remember singing it this way…. (feel free to sing-a-long... you know you want to!!!)…

There was a Noble King, He had ten thousand men
He marched them UP to the top of the Hill
Then He marched them DOWN again

And when you're UP…you're UP
And when you're DOWN…you're DOWN
And when you're only halfway up
You're either UP or DOWN

Remember the song? Well… I was studying my Bible this evening with a video series instructing me and came upon 2 Corinthians 1:3-4…Praise be to the God and father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us IN all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God.

There are lots of "comforts" in that verse! If you are like me and you have A.D.D, if you're not careful, you can miss the beauty of the message in that verse.

My studying revealed an important thing. See the word "in" in that verse? Pull out your Bible and circle it, because it is essential to know that God does not always choose to keep us from troubles, but instead He will ALWAYS comfort us IN our troubles, because we WILL have them in order to grow spiritually.

Destitution, hardships, and sufferings flourish in us to fulfill His purpose, so that we may rise above and comfort others. He soothes over our hearts so that we may be able to console others in our lives that are going through troubles. We're able to reach out to them by the comfort we have with God!!!

Paul is the apostle who penned 2 Corinthians, and through his epistles, we know that Paul has had many hardships scattered around his life, but Paul chose to live his Christian life, not unto himself, but unto the Lord. He chose to live as a living testimony to others…that whether you're UP or DOWN God is there working in your life. It's emphasized that adversity works towards a blessing.

That's when I suddenly remembered the tune from my "Barney and friends" days. ….I can clearly relate the song with the Lord, especially with the words that I use to sing it with!!! Ok, are you ready??? Check this out!!!!

*There was a Noble King, He had ten thousand men*
Noble King (can represent God)…ten thousand men (can represent Christians)

*He marched them UP to the top of the Hill*
He marches us up, so that we may rise above and feel His comfort through the blessings we've been given in life.

*Then He marched them DOWN again*
Then, to teach us perseverance, He'll march us down…and take note of the word "again"; he doesn't just bring us down once... He does it over and over, so we are able to learn how to deal with our failures and difficulties through His Love for us.

*And when you're UP…you're UP*
When we're "up"…we're up!!! We're living in abundance of His grace! But through receiving comfort from the Lord, Paul teaches that we should reach down and comfort those who are down. We're to encourage them and uplift them, in order to pull them up with us, so that they see the blessing from the hardship God's allowed upon their lives.

*And when you're DOWN…you're DOWN*
Nobody will be "up" all the time; we have sins that will sneak up on us while we are in the flesh. The times of struggle are the times we should fix our eyes upon God. We're able to do so, through the comfort of Him and the work He's done in the lives of other believers, who are able to reach out to us. We're able to learn to let God work in our lives and deal with our failures and comfort us in our troubles and difficulties, so that we may reconstruct, re-develop and rebuild our spiritual lives… that the pattern may repeat itself and when we're marched back up to the top of the hill…we may reach out and minister to others. It's all a work in process!! When you really think about it… I mean, how awesome is that?!?!?

*And when you're only halfway up…you're either UP or DOWN*
I love the significance that can be drawn from this line in the song!!! Check this out!….This line reflects the spiritual choice that we have through Jesus. When we are only halfway up…we are in the midst of suffering….so we're given a choice. The choice is to both accept His love and receive His comfort or to fall back into the pits of despair, and ignore the deliverance that has been granted through Christ.

Where are you today? Maybe you're living in abundance at the top? Maybe you're praying for mercy at the bottom? Or maybe you're in the middle and are faced with the choice of choosing which way to go. One thing is for sure, no matter what depth of life you are in, God's grace is sufficient for us and His strength is made perfect in weakness. 2 Cor 12:9 When God spoke those words to Paul, Paul realized that when he is weak, he is strong.

My studying taught me that, as Christians, we should look up and heed Paul's Christian walk. Paul was so convinced of His salvation and He was sure of Heaven. He was so guaranteed of eternal life that he was not afraid to stand up for his faith, he wasn't afraid to take any kind of persecution or rejection. He wasn't afraid to suffer or ultimately give up his life…..all because he knew that the message of the Gospel was TRUE and it could change the lives of individuals and it could ultimately become the HOPE of the world.

Dear Heavenly Father,
Thank you so much for the different areas of life that you've taken me through. I know that whether I'm at the top of the hill or at the bottom you're going to be right there with me. Today and always, I choose to receive the comfort you've blessed me with through Jesus, and I am thankful for my moments of weakness…as they always bring us closer together in our relationship. In Jesus' Name I pray. Amen.

May God bless you through His choosing!!
Love, Miranda