Friday, August 12, 2016

Two Years Later

Its been two years since Jesus took over.  Two years since He changed me from the inside out.  I am so overwhelmed by how He did it two summers ago and how so messed up I was before he changed me.

If you are not familiar with The Refinement Process I encourage you to read the very first blog which I wrote exactly two years ago today!

I won't go into what all happened then as the very first blog really explains clearly.  I am going to tell you how Jesus is working in my life two years later.

My life is COMPLETELY different because of Jesus and all the refining He has done for my heart and mind.  I am a changed woman in many senses.  I am amazed at how He won't give up on me and how He gives me so much strength to withstand my temptations.  Only God. Its only because of Him.

There have been many temptations during the last two years of this process.  I have been able to overcome so many and there are a few that I haven't. I have been very honest on this blog in many of my post on how I have both had success and big fat failures during this refining process.

Jesus, when He changed me, told me through the Holy Spirit to stop watching shows and movies that were not good for me (again read my first blog to understand). There have been countless books I feel Jesus literally saying 'nope don't even think about it, don't read it, don't touch it, RUN!  He has been so PROTECTIVE of me its really emotionally overwhelming how much He has shielded me from myself. 

There are certain story lines that are red flags for me and He has made it rather easy to just not partake in any of them.  There are definitely shows, movies, and books I want to partake in but I don't.  Not because I am strong and able. I'm not. I'm weak. Its HIM. Its Jesus.

He answered me, “I am all you need. I give you My loving-favor. My power works best in weak people.” I am happy to be weak and have troubles so I can have Christ’s power in me. I receive joy when I am weak. I receive joy when people talk against me and make it hard for me and try to hurt me and make trouble for me. I receive joy when all these things come to me because of Christ. For when I am weak, then I am strong.  2 Cor. 12:9-10 (NLT)

Its because of Christ.  

I finish all my blog post with 'because of Christ'.  Its not to sound cool or wrap up the blog with a pretty, neat bow.  Its because without Him changing my heart and mind I wouldn't be refined. I would still be all messed up on how the world views love, sex, and relationships.  

There have been books, shows, and movies that I have wanted to be apart of.   I can't even find words to pray to help me with the temptations but He just takes over.  Like for real. I will be so close to reading that book, or watching that steamy show and HE  just stops me.  He does it with such tenderness and He just has it. 

He has rescued me so much the last two years and it just overwhelms me how much He loves me.  He is so personal.

He is more than just a Rescue
That's where it starts, not where it ends
let freedom in
More than just a story
In the sky, wearing white, He's alive
In every moment
and now that I know this love

I can throw my hands up 
worries down
I remember when He showed me how

He made me alive.  He made me worthy. He made me Holy.  He made me Righteous.  When I put my faith in Christ as my Savior He saved me from this world, from Hell, and from a life with such shallow ambitions. 

Once I was lost but now I'm found
No strings attached when He saved my soul
I want to know the God I know 

I came alive when I let go

He is so worth believing in.  He is more real to me them my temptations. He is so worthy of my obedience.

I love Him.

He saved me.

I hope you one day will feel the love and peace I have felt the last two years with this amazing, miracle-filled process. 

I am a free woman in Christ.  When God sees me he doesn't see my past or my current sins, He sees Jesus and His blood covering me.  I am covered.  I am so thankful.

Jesus is so real and so powerful and I am writing this and sharing this because He is so worth talking about.  He is so beyond what you can even fathom.

I hope I never stop this process.

To always throw my hands up to my beloved Savior.

He is the Saving One.

Because of Christ,

Emily Rickey  

(song I have quoted in this blog is 'The God I Know' I feel it was written for me and this process)

Thursday, January 7, 2016

The Refinement Process: An Update

Its been awhile since I have last updated this blog. Six months to be exact. That is half a year. So I thought I would carve out some time to update you on me. This process. I got an email update the other day saying that this blog has been read nearly 4,000 times!

Thats 2,000 since my last blog post.

That got me thinking.

Why are they reading my blog?

Why do I have this blog?

Do they judge me?

Think less of me? More?

Does that matter?

Are people coming to my blog for answers?

Or simply do they check to see if I have a new blog post?

Well I'm going to update you with a new post.

The refinement process is still in swing with my life. With me.

I stay away from mostly anything that will tempt me to think not so good thoughts.

In the last six months of my life I have found that prayer has become my bed rock for success. I find if I'm intentionally praying for myself in regards to what  I think, see, say, do, and be then I really find my peace and happiness in Jesus. Who by the way is who I'm praying too.

I send all my request to Him. The Great I AM.

I am successful when my eyes and my life is parallel to His Will. 

This refinement process has made my life so blessed. I find every aspect of my life is enriched when I'm obeying Jesus.

What? Jesus?

Why are you doing this?

What the hell are you doing?

Why Jesus?

Why not what you want?

Why not enjoy all the pleasures of this world?

Won't He forgive me regardless?

These are questions that constantly go through my mind.

I blame the Satan for this. He is really good at making me doubt and question.

Now this blog post I am finding is leading to whats been in my heart and on my mind for the last month.

Why Jesus?

I have been asked why in different forms why I call myself and am a Christian.

One thing you learn quickly when you change your life style to be more like Christ is that you will notice A LOT A LOT A LOT  of people don't follow Christ.  Even scarier is when you see people who claim to have Christ in their life but have no proof of Him whatsoever in their daily grind.

That has been quite the struggle for me.  When I was first in this whole process back in the summer of 2014  I wanted everyone to love Jesus like I loved Jesus. How could they not I thought?!

But as time has gone on I have learned that Jesus calls us at different times in our life. I have let that go mostly. That wanting to really make people love Jesus. Because honestly most people don't really know Him. Most church goers are for Him as long as their life is comfortable and happy. Now I really want those who don't have Christ to have Christ. I do! I really do! I have a list of people in my life who really really need Him in the worst way. But I find I'm hitting my head against the wall trying to get people to get to know Him.

Why get to know Him?

Thats how this all came to be.

When you date someone and you go out with them on dates you tend to want to get to know them. You yes think they are cute but if your morals aren't whacked you actually want to get to know their personality and their characteristics. Generally.  I know when I get to know anyone (I don't date anyone but my hubby so more like new friends) I really want to get to know who they truly are.

What are their main beliefs in life? What makes them happy? What makes them sad, mad?  What do they define as good in their life?  How do they act around others? Are they selfish or selfless?

These are just a few questions that help me really find out someones character.

You see in order to know Jesus you MUST study The Word. The Bible. That is the only way to really see and read about Him. You can learn about Him so much in Old and New testament.   I found that being in a bible study (bsf) that I was immersed in the Bible and learned about Jesus in such vast ways.

I really fell madly in love with Jesus through my study with Bible Study Fellowship studying Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. (the first 4 chapters of the New Testiment).

It tells of Jesus' life on earth.  Beginning to end.

From Jesus giving the Sermon on the Mount (matthew 5) to Jesus teaching on worry, money, judging, marriage, The Kingdom of God, and Hell. He shares so much in those chapters and when I see a new believer I always encourage them to read those 4 first.

You see once I got to know Him He really started poking holes at my dark little heart.

I got to read about His character and was earning to be like Him. He was so good sounding to me.

Who does not want to be better? To be stronger, wiser, enriched?

I remember reading in Mark:

If anyone would come to me (Jesus), he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me and for the gospel will save it.
Mark 8:35

I wanted to be like Him. But that meant changing.

So with all the help from Jesus He gifted me belief to better know Him and be like Him.

And how did he do this you ask?

Through the Holy Spirit.

That makes people uncomfortable.  Anything that sounds odd or fantasy freaks people out.

The Holy Spirit. Who the hell is that?

This is an important part to get. You see back in the day after Jesus had died and rose again, and left the earth. He had left these disciplines to spread the 'good news'. He said in Matthew 28:19

Therefore go and make disciples of all nations....Teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you, and surely I am with you always to the very end of the age.

So these Disciples did this and a huge thing happened to believers of Jesus during that time during pentecost.   It was a Jerusalem Festival held 50 days after passover...blah blah blah don't have time to tell you it all but so basically many people were in town together. So Peter one of Jesus' disciples while on earth and a handful of others all of a sudden are filled with "the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other languages' (from Acts 2)  There were many there listening to them and many of different parts of the world with many different languages. This was the first time the Holy Spirit of the trinity was introduced to us.

All of a sudden these people could hear the good news from these disciples because they were speaking their language.

These men did not know these languages they were now speaking till just then.

Peter says to this large crowd that can all understand Him that
'therefore let all Israel be assured of this: God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, Both Lord and Christ'
Acts 2:36

The people hear this and it says 'they were cut to the heart and asked Peter and the other apostles....

What shall we do? (acts 2:37)

The answer:

Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. You will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.
 Acts 2:38

The Holy Spirit.

That day at pentacost 3,000 people believed Jesus was Lord.

They got the Holy spirit because of it.

You see being a Christian is not going to church.  Or doing everything right. Or doing good works.  Or being a good human.

Though yes those things are important in living a Christian life those WILL NOT save you.

I needed saved. Badly.

I was obsessed with sex, movies with sex in them. Obsessed with the romance the world had to offer. I was living for me. For my pleasure. For my happiness. For myself.

But Jesus for some reason I still don't understand has chosen me to believe in Him. Why? Does He not know who He is dealing with? Me. Gross, dark-hearted me. 

But He did and did so like Pentocost on June 25, 2014.  I heard His Word (at a summer bible study Thank you Mindy and Melissa for having me!) and It cut to my heart. I wanted to know what I could do like those people at pentaocost.

So He changed my heart and I felt the Holy Spirit come into me like FIRE.  I felt it so strong. It was not me. It was Him.

I believed he was in fact Lord and the Holy Spirit in turn penetrated my heart.

Then the Holy spirit who is Jesus with in my heart and all the council from Him started chipping away at me.  I started the Refinement Process because I believed He was Lord. And remembering that going to the Bible for my life council I started studying it and applying it to my life. I started to put on grace to others in my life. I really started trying to be like Jesus.

Peter said a little further on in Acts: Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved. (Acts 4:12)

I follow Jesus and accept Him as my Savior and Lord because this life we are living here on earth is not the be all end all. In fact we will die one day. I will die one day. You will die one day too.

Where are you going?

What are you doing on this earth?

Are you living for yourself?

What the hell are you doing?

You see I don't normally like to have bad words in my blog, doesn't feel classy or right. But you see Hell is a very real place.

And if you do not believe Jesus and accept Him as Lord and make your life for Him then Hell is where you will go when you die.

I HATE that. I hate that there is a Hell. But there is.

I don't want anyone to go to hell. I have so many loved ones who are on their way to Hell.

It says in scripture: They will throw them into the fiery furnace, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. Matthew 13:42

The first chapter of Romans really helps me bring it all together regarding this life here on earth and the after life.

It says in the bible that 'they (unbelievers of Jesus) exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshipped and served created things rather than the Creator. (Romans 1:25)

Also in chapter two it says: But because of your stubbornness and your unrepentant heart, you are storing up wrath against yourself for the day of God's wrath....(Romans 2:5)

For it is not those who hear the law who are righteous in God's sight, but it is those who obey the law who will be declared righteous. (Romans 2:13)

You see believing in Jesus is one thing. There is head knowledge but that does not save you. Its your heart through the Holy Spirit!

I don't want anyone to perish and go to Hell. Its real.  Its the sad truth I don't even want to share. I know people will be offended reading this. I'm sure I'll even get some not so nice comments or hate mail....But the Holy Spirit laid this on my cut to the heart-Heart and I must share.

I share because I have too.  He said we are to go preach the truth to all nations.  I feel its so important to speak these truths to you.  We live in a world that is all against God and Jesus and the whole belief in a higher power. More and more I see people worshiping crystals and vibes and that is from Satan!

Be aware of what you put in your life as a believer.  We as Jesus followers must be bold and speak truth to ourselves so we stay sharp. I must because if not I will run off and watch all the bad shows, movies, and be bad. Like bad, bad!

I will finish with this. I love this scripture from Romans.

It says: I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for the Salvation of everyone who believes.

It goes on to say this very simple statement: The righteous (Followers of Jesus) will live by Faith.

Romans 1:17

Its so true.

Its faith in Jesus for your life and your life after death. What you do here on earth matters. What you believe. What you say. What you watch. What your see.

Its Jesus-Nothing Else.

Because of Christ,

Emily Rickey