Saturday, August 02, 2008

being a christian.........

is sometimes so hard.

i was saved in march 1992, it's been a long, hard and sometimes lonely walk, my husband is a muslim, i left the first church i was in due to charismania and wandered in the wilderness until the Lord brought the church i am currently in - it is a Bible Believing Church, which preaches the Gospel and is separate from the apostasy and compromising churches which are all around us. even this is hard, i love the people there - we are few in number and one of my oldest friends went home to her reward in april after suffering with ovarian cancer, everyone is pretty weird and the fellowship is sometimes lacking but i feel at home there. when my lovely husband said we were moving finding a new church was one of my biggest anxieties, i think i blogged about it earlier, the Lord saw fit to move us 30 miles away for now and so we go back to our home church on sundays, sometimes we take a picnic - petrol is too expensive to go there and back twice in a day, i do the childrens meeting on thursdays so usually miss the bible study.

anyway, i am getting off the point.

its not all about the mountain top experience, much time as a christian is spent in the valley - i don't think we are meant to be on the mountain all the time, it is self indulgent to focus on that - we are built for the valleys, it is these experiences which enable us to deal with the ordinary stuff of every day life - that way we can be in touch with reality and therefore with our fellow man and so be a good witness - the mountain top experience i suppose makes us a more effective witness filling us with joy unspeakable.

i have been struggling alot with my christian walk, i started to keep a journal, i quite enjoy doing it and i thought it might help, i think it does, but my memory is so bad i forget what i have written :-0. i feel as i have been walking 'afar off' - much like Peter - for ages, a couple of years probably, and i don't know why. i know all the stuff in my head - i am sinner saved by grace, i want to be on fire for the Lord, i want to be unafraid and unashamed of the Gospel of Christ, i want to walk the talk - but i don't seem to be like that anymore, i used to be, then i start thinking about it all and start to feel that maybe i am not saved, i end up wracked with doubts - i worry that i will be one of the ones the Lord sends away at the end. when i think that it makes me so sad, i feel like i am dying inside, i want so much to be close to Him, i know that when i read my bible and pray much then i feel so much better - so why am i so easily distracted? God has done SO, SO, much for me, and for my family, especially these last few years, and earlier this year He worked such an incredible miracle of such perfect timing even my Lovely Husband said 'only God could have done this'.

so, why is it that as christians we can put so much effort into doing nothing, wasting time, watching tv, blogging (oops!), work, housework etc etc, but find an hour reading a bible and/or praying too hard? because i am sure i am not the only one. sometimes i think i am so afraid of being out of the Lords will that i don't pray because i am worried i am doing it 'wrong' - which is stupid and probably a lie of the devil, after all the only one who doesn't want me to pray etc. is the devil himself, why give him what he wants? then maybe i think perhaps i am afraid of where God will take me/us - but i know that it is better to be at the centre of Gods will than anywhere else. then i find myself thinking that i have been cold and backslidden for so long that maybe i am too far away from the Lord and there is no going back - but again i guess this is the enemy putting thoughts in my head, i have let my relationship with God wither and die so i have to put it right - and anything worth doing is hard.

i am very aware of my sins and my shortcomings before God and in a weird way i find that comforting - if i wasn't saved i wouldn't care about my sins would i? the rest of the world doesn't - they don't even know or accept they are sinners!! i don't understand why i do the same things over and over again - i come to God confessing the same stuff, asking Him to help me with the same things again and again, when will i ever learn? then i wonder if i am being honest with God - i know He looks at my heart, He sees me as i am and knows me better than i know myself, so am i being honest with myself? i think i am but how do i know? i wonder why i don't get the deep conviction and incredible zeal that i see others have? i want it - at least i think i do, but how do i know i am not fooling myself? if i REALLY wanted it, if God could see that i REALLY want to be zealous and on fire for Him then why doesn't he grant that? so then i am back to thinking i am not saved, round and round i go!!

i believe the Lord Jesus Christ left the glory of heaven, i believe He came and lived on this sin cursed earth with sinful man, i believe He lived a perfect sinless life and died on the cross, shedding His perfect blood for MY sins, i believe He rose again on the third day and ascended to heaven and i believe He is coming back again in glory to judge the world and i KNOW that the only way to heaven, to eternal life, is by trusting and believing in the shed blood of the Lord Jesus - His blood and His blood alone is sufficient to cleanse me of my sins so that i can know forgiveness from God - and the bible promises that God WILL blot out my sins and put them away as far as the east is from the west - hallelujah what a Saviour, so, by that account then i am truly saved, going home to heaven when i die.

so, why do i feel numb to the Holy Spirit in my life? why do i not feel the presence of the Lord? i can't keep on like this, i NEED and WANT the Lord God to draw me nearer to Him, nearer ever nearer - i want my joy back - the bible says that God will restore the joy of my salvation. you know the worst thing is that there is SO MUCH to pray for and SO MUCH to learn from the bible - and i have so many wonderful books to read, why do i waste so much time?

one of the things that i need to work on is discipline - i am pretty relaxed about stuff generally, and so we don't have much of a routine in our home, that needs to change because i need to have set meal times, part of the problem is finding my own quiet time with the Lord, my Lovely Husband gets up a long time after me and is not a christian, so i can't do my quiet time when he is there - he is working away at present for a bit so i don't have that excuse, i need to set aside a specific time every day to read and pray and go from there.

i know that my life attitude is not one of total dependence on God - i don't know why, fear, anxiety, pride - perhaps i think that the Lord God who is in charge of the universe and who sees the begining from the end doesn't really know what He is doing - which means i am stupid as well as proud and anxious!!

at the end of the day i want to be in the place where there is nothing between me and the Lord God, where i know His presence in my life and where i am totally surrendered to Him and to His will.

watch this space!!

Friday, August 01, 2008

photos of my lovely husband..

this is my husband in our kebab shop, he has sold it now and is currently unemployed, he is not as scary as he looks!!

also erdinc, looking very thoughtful and interesting in black and white, this is in our old house, we lived there for 22 years, moved in more or less straight after we got married. funnily enough i don't really miss the house - the newer one we are renting is much more comfortable. i have a dishwasher!!!! yaaaay!!

It's like a new blog.........

Well, it’s so long since I last blogged properly that I feel as if I am starting again. But, dear reader, before I go any further, don’t be lulled into a false sense of security by the capital letters – I am writing this in word on the lap top whilst watching Meric NOT do his school work. forum smileys Why is he doing school work when it’s the holidays I hear you cry, well, Meric does very little of anything ever so I try to keep him at it all the time. The great crisis of the moment involves the fact that both our children are due to take SAT 1 in October, the American tests, the Lovely Menekse is very diligent, working hard at her studies, reading ‘good’ books etc. etc, she also now has a McJob and she is walking well with the Lord. Meric, on the other hand, does little more than swim, sleep, eat and watch TV. not necessarily in that order. Of course it is now accepted in academic circles that boys are much more suited to the ‘sudden death’ nature of exams – so who will get the highest score in October? If it’s Meric then Menekse has informed me she will be leaving home, forum smileys sigh, I am sure she doesn’t mean it, but it does seem quite unfair – Meric sails through everything and is one of those people who always seems to come up smelling of roses; despite, at times, being a thoroughly unpleasant young man. Will it always be like that? Who knows, he is saved – and I believe he is since I had the great blessing and privilege of leading him to the Lord myself, but he is hopelessly backslidden and doesn’t appear to give the things of God a seconds thought. I wonder how long the Lord will allow him to continue in his current condition.

Anyway, I have been wondering what should be my first subject – don’t know why, I always seem to have a lot to say about nothing in particular – and I am sure most of it is pretty dull. I thought I would insert a few photos, these are old ones from a family bbq on the beach – obviously, but we have now moved away from the seaside and are living in a city which is on the river but not the seaside, which is sad, but hey-ho that’s the way it goes.

In this photo we have, (l to r) my youngest sister, my cousins husband, my cousin, my mum and Lovely Niece then me - doing a great job of not looking at the camera!

this was the same day, we are on the beach at a place called Fraisthorpe, it's one of our favourites since it tends to be populated by proper beach people - that is to say the ones who are there rain or shine (or snow, you know it is england after all). you can see the careful placing of the windbreaks - not just for privacy but for practicalites as well, we were bbqing so needed some shelter.

this is my Lovely Niece, she will be 4 in october, my mum is sat behind her. She really is the light of my life, well one of them anyway.

my two lovely girls, our beautiful daughter who is almost 18 and my Lovely Niece, perhaps they are doing a King Canute.
Our Lovely Daugher, Queen of all she surveys!!

On Wednesday night my youngest sister came over from York, we have Liverpool lady staying with us for a few days but my sister had arranged some time ago to come over to go the cinema to see Hancock – we had some free tickets on account of the huge amount of chocolate we eat and the diet coke we drink'forumMy two Lovely Sisters, Jocelyn, the youngest, on the left, Jacqueline, the middle sister, on the right, at a Robbie Williams concert i think.

So, I checked the internet and Hancock was showing at 7.25 p.m. Menekse was at work so it was the four of us – Erdinc, me, Meric and my little sister. It was hot, hot, hot. When we arrived there was a bit of a queue outside the door, I dropped Erdinc off and went to park, when I got back to them there was an awful lot of hyperventilating and stamping going on, Erdinc was marching around the building muttering under his breath – bless him he gets very stressed about non-important stuff very easily. Anyway, it transpired that Hancock wasn’t showing – because DARK KNIGHT was on in 4 cinemas!! Unbelievable. I mean who changes a cinema listing at the last moment without telling anyone? So, we had to have a conflab, obviously Jocelyn and I didn’t want to go to Dark Knight, plus if we had Menekse might have had to kill us – she was not happy about missing Hancock but would have been incandescent at missing Dark Knight. So, we decided that the guys would go to D.K and we would go to Mamma Mia – I have already seen that once but was up for it again, especially since my mum is in it (lol, only joking, but if you have seen it take note of the Julie Walters character – exactly like my mum, even down to the outfits). So, the guys went into their film, and we booked our seats for the 8.20 showing, the poor girl had no idea what to do with my vouchers so had to get Bald Headed Manager guy, she then booked us in for Dark Knight instead of Mama Mia, eventually she managed to get it right and we got our tickets. We had about 50 minutes to wait, so we went to get a drink. Sat in the bar area for about 40 minutes watching the queue outside getting longer and longer, listening to the announcer saying ‘the 8.20 showing of mamma mia is full now, next available showing 9.20’ – oh, how smug we felt. So we sat with our drinks enjoying the smoke free atmosphere until just gone 8, I wanted ice cream and the toilet so we went downstairs again. Got ice-cream, did the loo, went to screen 1 as per our tickets, screen 1 said that mamma mia started at 9.20 – I was confused, remember I had bought the tickets at approx. 7.15, so I wasn’t worried, looked around and saw Bald Headed Manager guy, ‘excuse me’ says I, ‘screen 1 says mamma mia is on at 9.20’ – ‘as do your tickets’ says BHMg!! My sister immediately said ‘so that’s three mistakes that girl made’ – I was very cross and said, rather loudly ‘you better be kidding me’ ‘oh please don’t shout’ says BHMg ‘it’s too hot, what time did you book?’ – So I told him what had happened and he escorted us to the house seats which were better seats than the ones we had booked anyway!! Nothing is ever straightforward is it? Anyway, the cinema was packed, totally full except for the few emergency house seats – minus the two we were sitting in. and of course it got hotter and hotter as the film went on - thankfully since it was mosly ladies it didn't smell too bad, the guys came out of their film just after us and well, let's just say i don't think many of them know what deodrant does, hummmy to say the least. Suffice to say I really really enjoyed mamma mia, more so perhaps than the first time, the cast look as if they are having such a good time, it’s a real feel good film – leave the cinema feeling hap hap happy!!! Highly recommended, go if you can. The music is great, the cast look as if they are having a great time, it’s very funny and a great way to spend a couple of hours on a wet summer afternoon perhaps.

so, i have some other stuff i want to write about but that's of a more spiritual nature, thought i would do it in a separate entry........