Please welcome guest blogger, Melanie Moscicki, as she shares a post that originally appeared on her site "From Faith, With Love"
God the Potter…
I’m nearing the end of wrapping up my Mending Your Soul class, though I am well aware the real work is just beginning in me. It’s been a long emotional journey, but is not without the reward of comfort and endurance that can only come from Him. For someone who has spent countless years fighting to stand strong WITHOUT God, laying all the brokeness and shortcoming out at His feet has been mortifying, humbling, and healing all in the same breath. May the words of my heart give hope to those still trapped in the prison that is your past.
~A Poem by Melanie Moscicki
Mending the Soul 2014
a million tears,
so many times she’s tried
To fix the broken little girl,
she buried deep inside.
He says to her,
“Come follow me,
I’ll make you new again”
but the walls she built are far too strong
to ever let Him in.
She hears the sounds of laughter,
of joy she’s never known
Could it be? A girl like SHE
should live on LOVE-alone?
So many scars from trusting
cracks from being dropped,
cast aside as nothing
but an empty, broken pot.
But He says He’s a potter…
The best there ever was,
and He says I’m HIS daughter…
and His work has just begun.
Isaiah 64:8 says “Yet you LORD, are our Father. We are the clay, you are the potter; we are the work of your hand.” I pray that each of us can grasp this truth in the depths of our soul. We are not finished friend, we are each works in progress by the creator of ALL that IS and that ever WAS, the God of miracles, the God of redemption, the God that makes ALL THINGS new.
~ From Faith, With Love,
***Physical, sexual, verbal, spiritual, or neglectful- abuse deadens the emotions, slays the self-worth, cripples the mind, even destroys the body. Mending The Soul is a Biblically grounded and psychologically informed first-of-its-kind comprehensive approach to understanding and treating every form of abuse. You can find out more about the program and where to get plugged in HERE.
Video about Mending The Soul
We are called to listen, love, and obey. I am fully aware that we may not always see the fruit of our love and the fruit of our obedience, but what I marvel at today is how God sometimes allows us little glimpses of the seeds we plant and the investments we make in others lives as we live out Jesus.
Today was such a day for me. I decided to run into the Fry's store near the high school where I was making my after school pick-ups. I normally don't go there, mostly because I like my local Frys, the one by my house where I know how to find everything, but today I did.
After grabbing a few thing and loading my car, I was approached by a man selling his jewelry. He asked if I wanted to buy any. I looked at him with a big smile and said "I know you!" Confused, he asked me how. I shared with him how some time ago, I met him in a different parking lot and he was asking for some money so he could purchase some inventory to sell.
Since I typically done hand out large amounts of cash to strangers, I offered to meet him at the shop and buy the perfume for him as an investment into his business (an investment into his life). Suddenly he remembered our fleeting encounter.
He was able to then share with me what that meant to him and how important that investment was. What I did not remember was the fact that at the time he was homeless, struggling to make ends meat. That little investment in his life was pivotal when he needed it most.
Today, he is no longer homeless, but thriving, working, creating art in jewelry and still smiling BIG.
I was reminded today that sometimes we are called to pour into other's lives simply because God says so, even when it is inconvenient and others think we are crazy. Sometimes, like today, we get to see a bit of the fruit of our obedience, but most of the time we don't. But still, we obey, love and pour into other's SO THAT they can turn and pour into someone else.
I feel blessed to have gotten the opportunity to see that Aaron is doing well. If you ever see him, may sure to say "hi" and grab a bracelet.
Love you in the Lord, Mia
Typically when I write about my bouts with depression, it's after I have moved through and found victory. I do this mostly because I feel that when I do open up to anyone outside of my husband (who knows me so well), people don't know how to respond....or they over respond, or they direct me to some feel good article or book.... or they just want to fix me because fixing me is easier that admitting that they can do nothing for me. I don't want people to fix me, I don't want to talk it out, I just want to make it through to the next moment without crying.
Today as I write, I am in the thick of it. Unlike other times when I am in the battle, I am not hunkered down in bed, unable to move. Instead, I am simply numb. I am numb to people, numb to their complaints about trivial issues, numb to their games. I am just numb to people's nonsense. I don't have the emotional time or strength for it.
And not only to them, I am all about equal opportunity! I am numb to my own emotions, I am numb to my own concerns....except in that tiny area of my heart where there is a tingle, the tingle that cries out to the Lord to see me through, the tingle, that dares to feel, but not too much or else I may become overwhelmed, This is the tingle that allows me to function throughout the day. This tingle has a name and it's name is Hope....hope which knows that God will deliver me, yet again.
Depression hits me at the most inopportune times. When there are things to do, places to be, people to love. This shadow of depression wants me forget what I know to be true and not show up...to leave the "pulpit" empty. Well, I won't! If I have learned anything over and over again, it is that in my weakness, He is shown strong. That doesn't mean I want to run around depressed everyday so I can see how great God is. I would love to not have this battle, but what it does mean, is that If I am struggling, I will press into hope, press into truth and NOT FORGET what I know to be true.....greater is He that is in me (even when I am struggling) than he who is in the world.
Until God delivers me completely (and I know He will), I will continue to cry out to Him, my Deliverer. I know he is near even in my darkness, my loneliness and my isolation. He is as close to me as the mention of his name......CLOSER, still. He is my breath and my life. I will breath Him in and exhale.
Even now, as I sit in my spiritual and emotional hospital, He cares for me. He is my respirator and I am being revived, moment by moment, breath by breath. He knows the deep concerns of my heart and those things that I cry out to Him about in my isolation. He hears and He cares.
So, whether, you are in the hospital right now or out feeling better than ever, the truth remains that hope remains, The Lord, God hears our tender pleas, and our unspoken prayers. He knows our needs and He is near to us, He is near the brokenhearted and will bind us up.
So my fellow patient, my fellow struggler, remember what is true. Don't think that just because we are limping that we can't stand. Be quick to stand in Him, my friend. Even in the thick of it, God uses us, He can lift our head to speak truth, sing love and bring praise. It just might not be as easy as it was before. But God...
So there it is. That's where I am at. Now, if you still have the need to fix me, go ahead, but go to the Real Fixer, the one that can actually handle it. He's got me...He's got YOU!
Love you in the Lord, Mia
I used to be a really good liar and a really good cheater.....Then God changed my life. Now (by God's grace) I am horrible at it. When I am talking with my family and I (on the super rare occasion) tell a half truth, my family looks at me and asks if I am lying and I say "No, why?" to which they reply "look at your face." Then we just laugh because it's the most horrific poker face ever.....hence why I could never play cards.
I look at it like this. I used to be a hot mess. Now I'm just a mess. But when God changed my life, called me out of the darkness of my lies and self destruction, He also took away my ability to lie well. It's a gift and a curse, especially when someone asks who finished off the ice cream or who had three pieces of pie....oh and who ate the box of Oreos. That's when it really bites me in the butt.
But, for reelz, I count it as a blessing...... a reminder of what God has done in my life. I am not who I used to be. I am done with wearing fake masks, lying to those I love, sneaking around and just hiding the way I feel.
Do you ever get tired of wearing a mask or being so good at faking that you almost believe the lie yourself? Been there....Done that! When I submitted my life to Christ, He gave me the gift of being my own lie detector and I thank Him for it.
It has it's perks in that it keeps me accountable and it has it's down side in that people know exactly what I'm thinking and feeling by my facial expressions. I have had friends comment on numerous occasions that they can tell when I am not happy, when I am frustrated, when things make me cringe, but they also tell me that they know when I am happy, when I am grateful and when I am thankful. So I count it as a blessing.
My prayer is that God would do whatever He has to do to make us Holy in every situation. For me, He helps me not to lie and lets me get caught if I do.
I have been reading through the Bible and I was so deeply spoken to through the account of the Israelites leaving the Egyptians. Repeatedly God allowed and did things SO THAT the people and Pharaoh would know that He is Lord of all. God went to great lengths to show His people that He is God by taking them out of Egypt and into the wilderness and eventually the Promised Land.
"I will harden the hearts of the Egyptians so that they will go in after them. And I will gain glory through Pharaoh and all his army, through his chariots and his horsemen. The Egyptians will know that I am the Lord when I gain glory through Pharaoh, his chariots and his horsemen." Exodus 14:17-18
"And when the Israelites saw the mighty hand of the Lord displayed against the Egyptians, the people feared the Lord and put their trust in him and in Moses his servant." Exodus 14:31
I am thankful that God desires that we know Him and still today, will go out of His way to make sure we know that He is Lord. "He MAKES us lie down in green pastures and LEADS us beside still waters, He restores my soul"
We are works in progress, Holy and Redeemed, set apart and Loved.
Hope Fest Arizona 2013! It happened, now the day is over, but the work continues. The work to bring hope, to serve, to love, to clothe our neighbors and so much more. I want to share just a few highlights of the day. I am going to skip over the part where I got extremely frustrated with the man who stood in a parking spot right where I wanted to unload my gear and wouldn't let me in because he had been standing there saving the spot for 15 minutes. Yes, God dealt with me on that by saying these words (which sounded a lot like my husbands voice) "Mia, do you want to be right or do you want to be righteous?" To be right would mean to argue over a parking spot to be righteous which my husband is, means to move on, forgive, love and find a different spot, even if it means a longer unloading trip.
I am always amazed how sneaky my sin is when it creeps in my mind and I don't even recognize it until I've opened my mouth. Can I remind you, I am a work in progress!! After the Lord dealt with me on that issue and forgave my repentant heart, I was off and able to experience an amazing day!
Walking among all the vendors, I had a great chance to talk with them and hear their hearts through their stories of faith, strength and hope. I re-connected with Monnie, who I first met when I was arranging vendors for a festival that I was involved in and she was just getting re-started and had not acquired all the supplies she needed. By God's design, my husband and I had the canopy, table and chairs that she needed and she re-launched her business. Now I got to see her at Hope Fest with an amazing booth, non stop traffic and a huge smile. She is such a great encouragement to me. I admit, I kinda felt like a Mamma who had birthed a baby and watched her grow into an amazing women! Check her out at faithwearforever.com
I met up with a facebook friend (now an in face friend), Deni, who embraced me with tears as I walked by. As she shared her heart we both rejoiced that God is a God of restoration and healing. Now she sells jewelry with Compelling Creations! The jewelry was so powerful that just reading the descriptions of the designs made my heart full.
There were so many other amazing vendors, it is hard to name them all. I guess you will just have to come to Prescott, AZ next year and visit them all with me again!
Throughout the day, there were baptisms, prayer tents, testimonies, outreach to the homeless, free hugs and music. Lots of music.
It was a blessing to see bands, that I now call friends, like Faith by Fire, Covenant 31 and Brian Weaver. A big thank you goes out to Brian for letting me bum a ride up the mountain with him, his 2 dogs, Chris the guitar player and all the gear. He wasn't kidding when he said there might not be room. So I sat in the front seat with my two bags packed between my feet and legs and a dog on my lap. Just like that, we made the trek. I have to admit it was fun cuddling with his sweet doggy!
Hope Fest Eve. The night before Hope Fest, Brian Weaver played at the Celebrate Recovery at The Heights in Prescott. Always a joy to watch him and even be able to help him out with his merch table.
Not only is it great connecting with bands I know, it is a blessing to meet new musicians. My merch table was right next to a young couple that travels full time in music ministry. It was fun to talk with them, but to watch them do what God has called them to do, blew my mind. Dusty is a Hip Hop artist (AND A GOOD ONE) and his wife Krystal is a singer and paint artist. They incorporate it all in their ministry and set. LOVED IT!! My greatest compliment (at least I think it is) when I meet a hip hop artist is this "I'm not really a hip hop fan, but I LOVED that." Dusty was so kind to see my heart through that ridiculous comment as I hadn't yet mastered the art of political correctness or tact. They are so gifted, called by the Lord, sent to share their testimony and lift up the name of Christ! They are "Irregular4Christ" and ready to travel! Check them out!
With all the independent artists that were there, many of us rely on help. We can't do it alone. When someone says that they are willing to drive up to Prescott, get a hotel and volunteer at your booth to watch and run your table so that you are free to sing and meet with people, there is only one answer...YES!!!
I'm not sure if there are words that can adequately express how grateful I am to these two ladies. I kept saying "I don't know what I would do with out you." It was true, they were amazing, selfless and willing. They really are not volunteers, they are partners in the ministry. They are friends!
Thank you Deby! Thank you Lisa! As you can see by the photo, they didn't just help me, but also Brain Weaver, Faith By Fire...all of us!
With my table in good hands, I was able to go and do the main thing I came to do...SING!
This is where I get blown away (again). First off, I was blessed to have Jerry sit in with me on base. He was so great. It takes great skill to play with me. A midst the wrong chords (played by me), playing the song in a different key (me again) adding or subtracting a bridge here or there (give you one guess who did that), Jerry was a pro and able to follow my every crazy move and mishap.
(so thankful to Karmen for the photos, always the last thing I think about when playing)
One of my favorite parts of the set, especially because this was sponsored by Celebrate Recovery, was being able to share bits of my testimony, what God has done in my life, how awesome our Lord is and the song I wrote for the Celebrate Recovery inspired Home Run Movie CD ~ "You Are Not Alone" (looking forward to recording my own version soon)
I also sang a new song I wrote with Mark Snyder called
Jesus Loves Me (ok, actually I haven't named it, but lets just go with that for now)
I Choose To Praise You - Rags - Shelter In The Wind - Oh Lord You're Beautiful
It's what happened after the set that blew my mind. The rush of people who were there waiting and had beaten me to my merchandise booth and the fact that they all waited after they bought CD's to talk and share their hearts was overwhelming.
To talk with a man who received hope through the songs because he was just diagnosed with cancer that week, to hear from a man who is praying for a marriage restoration, a woman who even 20 minutes after I was done was still weeping because of what the Holy Spirit moved in her through listening to the music and words I shared on stage..... to have people come up to me in tears because the Spirit spoke to them through the songs.....a lady who was telling her friend on the way there, "I just wish some one would sing a Keith Green song" and then to hear it at the end of my set and worship to the words of that amazing man, blessed her heart and blessed my rejoicing heart as well. It overwhelms me.
Story after story, hug after hug, prayer after prayer, I stand amazed at what God does when we simply obey. Amazed at what God does through broken, imperfect people who stumble and fall, but people that know the voice that lifts them back up.
It is my joy to sing, to share my testimony, to be used by God as He has gifted me, but more than that it is a responsibility. When God has done an amazing thing, my response and responsibility is to go and tell.
Yes, it is a joy. Yes it is a responsibility and Yes it is also an Honor.
An honor that I do not take for granted or take lightly.
Whatever vocation we are given, we have a story to tell. It's the beautiful story of the redemption of mankind, the story of redemption in our lives. We all have different ways of doing it, but we all are called to do it.
Hope Fest Arizona answered the call. They just did it and they will continue to do it, even when the music stops playing. Hope Fest is more than a festival it is the hands and feet of Jesus serving God through broken people who celebrate all that God has done and will continue to do.
It is because of the hearts of the Hope Fest team, that I count it a joy and honor to have partnered with them to share the story.
Hopefully you made it to the end of this post, because I am saving the best for last. None of this would have happened without the Lord. The few stories and miracles that I heard of and the countless ones I did not get to hear are testimony to God's hand and providence for this event. He really was there EVERY step of the way, providing it all.
A huge blessing and thanks go to these two who heard the call and gathered God's people to action. Thank you Jaye Lene and thank you David. May God's blessings continue to flow over your lives!
(and thank you Monika for this beautiful picture I snagged off of FB)
A collection of writings from a life based on the truth that about midnight anything can happen.
As an imperfect servant of the Lord, I often feel I am fumbling my way through life, looking upward for guidance and outward to love. So, I write about it, to break up the noise in my head.