Friday, May 29, 2015

Chocolate Silk Pie...

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Criswell

So yesterday we had two of my husband's friends come over for dinner. As we were getting ready for their arrival, my husband had gone outside to grill the steaks when across the room I spotted a half of a chocolate silk cream pie on the counter. Oh goodness, my adrenaline started pumping as I honed in on that pie and as though I was in a "chocolate" trance I went to the silverware drawer and grabbed me a big ol' fork, proceeded to pop the lid off the container and without even a thought started eating that thing as though I had never had chocolate before...ha! As I came to reality, my eyes widened as I was incredibly shocked to see the only thing left remaining was a half ring of pie crust, chocolate and a little evidence of whip cream...have you ever done that? Where you ate something so delicious and realized you ate more than you had planned?  So, I guess the little girl in me thought, "Just put it on the cake stand and no one will even notice..." (I can just hear my sweet  mom's voice in her Korean accent, "Aww Teresa, you no eat like that...you know better.")

 

Well, upon our guests arrival, Trissy and I were getting ready to leave for a meeting - at this point I had forgotten about the pie incident. As we came back home a couple hours later, we were greeted by everyone when I spotted the same pie on the counter - but there was even more in the container than when I feasted on it just a couple hours earlier! Drawn to it yet again, I said out loud, "Wow! I love that pie!" And then I heard the laughter from the men as they reenacted what happened next, I was almost on the floor rolling in laughter!

Now you have to understand these men...they are MEN...warriors, manly and just like super heros...so they began to tell me what had happened. After they had eaten their steak dinners, my husband was so excited about this chocolate cream pie! The guys were excited too but kept visiting and about half hour later, my husband's friend reminded him, "Hey! Where's that pie?" So hubby said, "Oh yeah! Come on!" So they get up from the table and hubby opens the refrigerator when he says, "Hmmm...I can't find it...O wait! I bet Teresa put it in the cake plate", and as he walked over to the cake plate, his friend closely behind him - they spot none other than my plundered feat of the sad remains of a chocolate pie!!! Hubby quickly assesses and says, "Oh man! Well there's no putting this together" and his friend said, "What the heck happened?" And all my husband said was, "Well it looks like two little mice got in there and their names start with "T""! They busted out laughing and made a trip to the grocery store and that's how the pie "reappeared"!

So of course, I sadly admitted there was only one mouse and  it was all me in which they laughed even more.  Yet even in this real life scenario I was reminded of our amazing God - of course there are two ways to see this - but I'm going to speak from this victorious perspective...in those moments when we finally see intimacy with God is likened to feasting on a chocolate silk pie - we get to that place where we can't get enough of Him and the time spent with Him we can't believe how much time has passed - and when it looks like our day was "wasted" because of the time that got away in His presence - He redeems that time back in ways we could never imagine - and we end up getting more work done that matters to both Him and to us! The moral? Taste and see that the Lord is sooooo good as we will delight in Who He is - there's so much more of Him to be had - dig in!

Psalm 34:8, "Taste and see that the Lord is good. Oh the joys of those who take refuge in Him!"

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

The Mystery Revealed Through Us...

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Criswell



Praying the Word of God; in all of it's importance to do so - do we understand the magnitude of these prayers?

I have to ask myself, do I long for the constant awareness of His presence?
Have I fallen asleep to the awakening of His empowering grace?
Do I allow His supernatural power to invade in and through me to walk in Who He is with supernatural ability to be and do above and beyond my natural abilities? 

With that said, I think on Isaiah 11:2, which I am led to pray quite often: "May the Spirit of the Lord rest on us - The Spirit of Wisdom and Understanding, The Spirit of Counsel and Might, The Spirit of Knowledge and the Fear of the Lord." Yet today, I was compelled to continue reading on through verse 5.  Upon this reading, my eyes were opened to understanding - this prayer of The Spirit of the Lord to rest on me is to awaken me to understanding what the Spirit of the Lord desires to be through me, just as the Spirit of the Lord did through Jesus - it's not just to be smart and witty or know how to see, say and hear things more clearly - it's truly to be able to:

- Delight in obeying the Lord
- Never judge by appearance (Whether they look the part or not), false evidence, or hearsay.
- Defend the poor and the exploited.
- Rule against the wicked and destroy them with the breath of our mouth.
- Be clothed with fairness and truth

Today's Triumphant, Victorious Reminder is that in His presence is fullness of joy to be able to delight in obeying Him; to delight in never judging others by their appearance (Whether they "look" good or bad), false evidence or hearsay; to delight in defending the poor and the physically and spiritually exploited; with humility to rule against the wicked as we speak what The Spirit of God would speak through us, cutting sharper than any two edged sword - being able to see clearly between the soul realm and the spirit realm; and with delight be clothed with fairness and truth.

As we pray the Word of God, may we realize it's not just to possess "super" powers to look good or having the false mindset of "accessing" a "genie in a bottle"  - the purpose is to reveal the loving power of God to see people set free to be a part of releasing them from their prison cells and FINALLY seeing the glory of the Lord through us which gives others hope - for we have the honor to be ambassadors - representatives and agents of a beautiful mystery - and that mystery is simply this: we are the hope of Glory, and that is us revealing with our actions that Christ lives in us!

Scripture References:
Isaiah 11:2-5
Isaiah 61:1-3
Psalm 16:11
Colossians 1:27

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Fabrics...

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Criswell


 
 

"I have to have it!  Oh my goodness that outfit is a MUST! Where can I get it?"

Depending on who wears it and if they wear it well...for many in the fashion industry, their clothing is to inspire and if marketed well, it compels others to want it also.

So with that said, it caused me to think of what I've been called to clothe myself in...it's made with the finest fabrics, made by the Author of all designers who clothes the ones He has chosen to represent on the "red carpet" of this life to display His glory - as others look in awe - I must wear the rare fabrics of tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience.  This beautiful array of threads interwoven with gorgeous grace gives allowance to extend to others in their faults just as He has done for me and causing me to be aware of forgiving the people who I have allowed to offend me.  This beautiful garment reminds me of the great forgiveness of God in all the sins I have committed, and in that is great responsibility to be quick to forgive others as well with HIS forgiveness that is endless.  Yet even with all those beautiful fabrics, the most important piece of clothing to wear is LOVE - it is the rarest of all and it's the very one that brings all the other rare pieces to fit together so uniquely well as the garment falls into place binding me with others in Him in perfect harmony and reminding me to always be thankful to God for Who He is.

It's great to know what we need to do, but HOW?
It's simple, the "currency" of receiving this clothing is with a heart of gratefulness allowing the LOVE of GOD to rest on us - bringing us into intimacy with the Most Famous Designer of all times...and here's one of the keys, when we become aware of our ungrateful hearts, we no longer need to feel condemnation or shame, instead we can be thankful to Him that His Spirit made us aware of the ungratefulness and simply say, "Thank you Father for Jesus Who is revealed by the Holy Spirit who came to reveal the love of the Father." It's simple - when we mess up in the midst of hard times - He makes allowances for us to get back up in Him and reveal Him more and more - for He is Love!

Scripture Reference:
Colossians 3:12-17