Archive | June 2012

Walk, Trust, Live By Faith

Taking a quick break from Song of Solomon today to talk about faith.

NIV: 2 Corinthians 5:7: We live by faith not by sight.

MSG: 2 Corinthians 5:7: It’s what we trust in but don’t yet see that keeps us going.

KJ: 2 Corinthians 5:7: We walk by faith not by sight.

Do you live by faith? What does it mean to walk, live, trust in faith especially when you don’t see. I woke up in a rare panic attack, about my passport. In little over a month I will be heading to Costa Rica on a mission’s trip but I need one thing to go and it is my passport. I mailed in the required paperwork and thought nothing about it until this morning. I woke up and thought wait was I supposed to submit the original documents and not the copies. In a panic I am running trying to remember what I did with the copy of my letter. I was in a panic. Yet in my spirit I’m hearing God say it is going to be alright, you will get your passport. Even in the midst of God speaking, I was like God am I even supposed to go Costa Rica. There have been a lot of things happening to me that is causing me to doubt it. All God said was yes.

Then God placed this in my spirit Walk by faith not by sight. I’m like God are you kidding I am walking I just don’t see it! Wait that is His point, I’m not supposed to see what’s going on. If I saw everything that is going to happen I can’t trust God can I?

There is one trust one faith we all believe in which is Jesus Christ is the son of God and He’s real but we don’t see him. We weren’t living when He was on the earth and yet usually without question we walk by Faith that Jesus died and rose from the dead. Usually we believe that easily and yet when God calls us to walk in faith in our daily lives, or believe something revealed to us we struggle. It is okay to struggle but only when God wins and we don’t give up.

I have this urge to walk down the who’s who’s of faith hall of fame in Hebrews 11, I’m not going too. These men and women lived, struggled, and yes even questioned God. It’s funny when we are in the situation where we need a lot of faith we question God and then when we are out of it we tell other people man it was not as hard as it seems. The truth is it is hard, but when we trust in God,  get on our knees and say God I don’t know what to do but you do. That’s what it means to live by faith, they got it in the Hall of fame.

What the hall of famers did and what comes down to is trust and letting go, am I going to trust God that this is what He wants. Am I going to stop playing games and move towards him? Am I going to put my- self down and allow Him to work through and in me?

In the faith hall of fame Hebrews 11 the one thing that they had in common was that they let go of whatever it was holding them back saying God I will trust you. Even Sarah and Hagar who had to let go of disbelief, hurt, anger, jealousy, so that God can work it out for them (I do have a funny picture in my head of a nice exchange between Sarah and Abraham, and Hagar and God). But it might even mean letting go when whatever God is saying to you is just about to happen. What I mean by letting go is taking off whatever disbelief, questions, malice, hurt, jealousy, or whatever is entangling you. When you do that you are saying to God, “I don’t see it God, neither do I understand it, but I am your humble servant, I trust you to handle this.” Remember just like Mary mother of Jesus she was scared, she didn’t know, didn’t comprehend, asked some questions, then she let go, kneeled before God and said I’m your humble servant.

What if I take that attitude right now, then I would be walking by faith and not by sight. If I get on my knees and say I’m the Lord’s servant this situation is in your hands, I will trust in your word to me. How much better would this become and an awesome encouraging story as well.

King James bible says Walk by faith is like the Message is saying, trust even when you don’t see, and like NIV version says live by faith. It does take all three to walk it, to trust it, and to live by faith. Now doesn’t that give you goose bumps! Three different versions but all the same message which all means and does the same thing. I’m choosing to walk, live and trust by faith when I don’t see it happening. What will you choose this day trust God or trust your sight?

Looking for the One

Songs of Solomon 3:2 I will get up now and go about the city, through its streets and squares; I will search for the one my heart loves. So I looked for him but did not find him.

This is part two of the series. Oh how I long to get up and search for the one my heart loves. You know what this woman was smart. You can dream but you need to do something. I’m not saying to go right now and join a dating site, but you just can’t sit on your bed dreaming of the one and do nothing.  There is a right way and there is a wrong way to look. Let’s talk about the wrong way first.

In my last post I talked about Hello Dolly well I’m going to continue.  Irene sings a song called Ribbons down my back. In her song she is basically talking about wearing something provocative to catch a gentleman eyes. Remember she was lonely she did not go out, she did not serve on any committee (well she couldn’t because she was not married but she could of), she was not meeting new people, she worked and dreamed. How often are you tempted to wear something or do something just to catch a man’s eye so you can have a relationship? You hoped that this relationship will turn into something more like marriage. Really you would want a man that sees you as something you are not to be or is doing things with you that maybe you should not be doing? There are other ways to catch his attention.

The right way to catch is eye is to be out there. Don’t be sitting down and say Oh God will bring him to me I will wait and sit on the wall he will notice me. Well okay do that and see what happens. You need to get up join a club, serve in your church be out there where he can notice you. I’m not saying go join a dating site (I believe if you do join a dating site that should truly be God lead), what I am saying that you just can’t dream and do nothing. I’m also not saying to look frumpy; you can be modest and still look good where you can catch his eye. The truth is that men are visual if you wear something provocative that may send a wrong message. If you are looking good he will notice. He will also notice what activities you are doing as well. It’s good to get up and do something.

She looked but did not find him. I know that when we (women) look and asking yourself for every guy that comes yours (my) way is this it God?  I know that I can become discouraged when a guy I(you) have a crush on doesn’t look my (your) way and we stay friends.  Then I wonder will a guy ever look my (your) way. When it does not happen for me I look to God because He’s my comforter, match maker and He knows me. I know that I need to listen to Him when He says wait or no not this guy. This brings me to an interesting point for God to bring us His match we truly need to know Him as He knows us very intimately. We need to listen for His direction, yes I’m talking about using discernment. When we know God so well and He knows you He will guide you to the right relationship, He will say no this is a friend, no you need to run from this guy, oh there he is. If we don’t have that relationship with him, then how can we truly go and look for him. I do mean God will say get up go do this over there or here, this is how you can serve or this how you can play. Yes we do need discernment when looking.

In my next post I will talk about finding the wrong man and then finding the right man.

Dreaming of the One

Songs of Solomon 3:1

All night long on my bed I looked for the one my hearts loves I looked for him but did not find him.

How often I have dreamed of finding the right man for me. I dreamed about how we will meet, our first date even how he would propose. Are these feelings wrong? No they are not they are natural. We hear oh we need to wait, it wrong to dream etc. Well it’s not wrong; it becomes a little dangerous when you become consume by these feelings.  What I mean ; is that your “dreaming” leads you to the wrong man, or you become so desperate that you fall for the wrong man, and your “dreaming” replace God because you are consumed.

One of my favorite musicals is Hello Dolly. One of the character’s name is Irene, she is a hat shop owner and she is single. Before the play begins we know that Dolly had introduced Irene to Horace.  Things were becoming serious between Irene and Horace, and Dolly who wanted Horace was going to meddle and stop this. Now I know what you are thinking Dolly meddles and Irene and Horace stays together, well not really. Dolly knows that Irene does not love Horace and Horace does not love Irene but because they are two lonely souls longing to have someone to hold and love they were willing to be together.  How often does our dream of finding the one leads us to someone who is not right for you but you are with that person because you are lonely.

There is nothing wrong with these feelings but we still need to take them to God.  See God is our matchmaker, He knows us so deeply. He knows what we are dreaming, our longings, our desires. He longs to bring His match to us in his time.  As well in His time He may ask daughter I know you are on your bed looking and dreaming of the man, but I need you to stop, see I have someone better in mind for you but your dream is not lining up with what I have in store you. Will you let me be your dream maker?

Will you allow God to bring your match to you? In my next post I will talk about the next two verses of looking and meeting up with the “wrong” guy. In the meantime write out your dream and for the next three days pray over your dream.

Why faithful servant?

My name is Crystal Nicole Livingston. I am in the last leg of my twenties and  I am a faithful servant of God.

Now I know what you are thinking okay why faithful servant. Its what I long; no what I strive for to be faithful in the things God has given me. He has given me a family, a nice marketplace career, a great lay ministry at my church, my good friends, and yes even my singleness. I want to be faithful in all these areas but even more being faithful to God. I am His daughter, His beloved, His friend, and even His servant as well.

It is my prayer that each post will point you back to God and will give good advice that points you to God. Its not my words but the words He lays on my heart to speak. 

I hope that you will grow in your walk with God, and if you do not know Him right now, that through the words I write you may see a beautiful picture of who God is. 

Let’s take a journey to become a faithful servant of God together!