About Me

My photo
This blog is simply meant to bring God the glory; no more and no less. I'd love to hear from you! Comments, questions, conversation. rebecca.labriola@gmail.com

Thursday, October 30, 2014

A Love Lie. Thursday, October 30. 2014.

Love drives us.

From the time we are young
to our adulthood
we live and act in hopes of obtaining love.

As children we (hopefully)
are obedient.
We desire to please. 
To do what is right.
To follow the rules.
For surely,
parents love obedient children.
We are good because we want to be loved.

When we become adults
and have families of our own,
we work in order to provide for our families.
Most of us would rather spend our time in other ways.
But we go to work.
Every single day.
To make money.
To put food on the table.
And a roof over our heads.
To provide.
Because we want the love and approval from our families.

We are constantly doing in order to be loved.
It’s tiring.
It’s never enough.
There’s always more to be done.

It is a daunting task to work in order to be loved.
It is also a lie.

The truth is a breath of fresh air.
It is pure freedom to know that we are already dearly loved.

We don’t have to earn God’s love.
God is love.
He loves us.

When we remove ourselves from the lie that
we must earn love
and relish in the truth that
we are loved,
things change.
Freedom is found.

We now do things because we are loved.
Because we are a dearly beloved child of God.

Let the truth sink in.
You are a child of God.
You were created in His image and likeness.
He is love.
He loves you.
He loves you freely.
His love for you is not earned.
It is a gift.
Freely given.
Child of God.

When we apply this truth to our lives,
our motives do a 180.

We no longer do things to obtain love.
But rather,
we do things because we are loved,
because we are children of God.

We go to work each day in order to serve others,
in order to serve our families,
in order to be a blessing to others.
It is no longer a question of ‘What can I gain?’
but rather,
‘What can I give?’

Let us kick out this lie.
Bring in the truth.
And see how our day changes,
see how our lives are better,
see how we can bless others,

and know what it is like to live as Children of the God of Love.  

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Sojourners. Thursday, October 23. 2014.

“Beloved, I urge you as aliens and sojourners to keep away from worldly desires that wage war against the soul.”
1 Peter 2:11

This verse starts off so gently but then
jumps right into the harsh reality that is part of our lives.

We are aliens and sojourners
journeying through this life,
this season,
awaiting our final destination.

This isn’t home.
I’m not sure why in our humanness
we try so hard to make it home.

This is the world.
It is simply a moment in time
compared with our life eternal.

We get so wrapped up in the day to day.
Eternity seems forever away
so we cave into what this world has to offer.
According to Peter,
we should be running the other direction.

This is not necessarily the most comfortable season of our lives.
And that is okay.
It won’t always be a breeze.
Remember, there is still a battle raging.
A war taking place.

Spiritual warfare was present when Peter wrote this passage
just as it is present now.

The battle is raging.
The world is pining for our souls.
So too is Christ.

If Christ is fighting so hard for our souls,
then why are we so leniently selling our souls to temporary things of the world?

If Christ is giving His all for our souls,
don’t you think they are important,
and worth it,
and made for more than what this world has to offer?

He died on the cross for you.
Your soul was worth it.

He fights for your soul every day.
He battles the things of the world
that we cannot seem to let go of;
wards off the things harmful to our souls.
Your soul is absolutely still worth it.

Go forth today believing that your soul is worth the fight.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Serviam! Wednesday, October 15. 2014.

It is my prayer that at some point each day
I make the choice to serve Him.
Hopefully multiple times a day.
But I know that I do not always reach my goal.

The other day I came across this idea online.

Wake up,
plant your feet on the ground,
and with conviction say
Latin for “I will serve!”

It is really such a simple gesture
but one that will begin your day by committing to serve Him.

Each day we are given this choice.
Who will we serve?

Before Satan fell,
he was an angel,

God put all the angels to the test.
They were given a choice;
to serve or not to serve.

Lucifer made his choice.
I will not serve.

St. Michael the Archangel made his choice too.
I will serve.

Satan’s “non-serviam” led to life eternal in the fiery pits of hell.
He spends his days trying to get others to also state with conviction “non-serviam!”
All he has to do is get us to use our free will to deny Christ.

St. Michael the Archangel’s “serviam” led to life eternal in the glory of Heaven.
He spends his days protecting the people of God
and trying to get others to cry out “serviam!”
All he has to do is get us to use our free will to choose Christ.

It has only been a couple of days now that I have woken up and verbally exclaimed, “serviam!”
And I notice a difference.

My days have been harder.
The battles have been rougher.
The trials come more often.
But to counter that.

The graces have come in abundance.
The opportunities to serve keep flowing.
Protection from the Holy Angels is present.
As well as the courage to continue to say,

Please join me in this journey.
Let’s do it together.
Let us serve.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Dear Beloved,. Wednesday, October 8. 2014.

Dear Beloved,

I know that you suffer.
That you experience pain.
That you have had a friend fail you.
That you have felt disappointment.
That you have cried yourself to sleep.

That you have asked why.

That you have questioned this life,
is it really worth living?

That you have questioned God,
how could He allow this?

That you hope for better.
That you wish for another scenario.

That you have felt your heart being ripped out.
And thrown on the floor.
And you’ve experienced the pain of it being stomped on.

You’ve known fear
and anger
and worry
and doubt.

You’ve been emotionally bruised,

You’ve suffered.

We have a God of mercy.
A God with a tender heart.
One that bleeds for His children.

One that would not allow suffering,
unless it be for the good of our souls.

There is redemptive suffering in His name.
Your suffering is not without meaning.
It is for a greater purpose.
A purpose that you might gain knowledge of tomorrow.
Or one that you might never know.

You are not suffering alone.
That is a lie.

You are suffering alongside Christ.
The One who suffered so deeply for your sins.

There is power in His name.
There is redemption in His name.
There can be glory found
even in the most heart-wrenching of places.
In your deepest suffering,
glory can be found there.
Redemptive suffering, beloved.
There is redemption.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Tent. Wednesday, October 1. 2014.

One time I went camping.
Tent out in the wilderness and all.
That was enough.

The brand new tent took hours to set up
and it happened to not be very good at its job.

The tent door zipper kept getting stuck.
Us young girl scouts kept testing that zipper.

Along with a testing period came the fear that we were stuck in the tent forever
followed by the fear that our tent would never zip up again.

There was no cushion between the ground and bottom layer of the tent.
Trying to sleep with rocks giving an unwanted ‘massage’ is not enjoyable.

Neither is waking up to a small pool of water in your tent.
Yup, it rained.
In Southern California.
On the beach.
There was a good two inches of water sloshing around our tent.

Needless to say,
I don’t find camping enjoyable,
I appreciate my bed much more,
and tent- you had one job, just one,
you failed.

“For we know that if our earthly dwelling, a tent, should be destroyed, we have a building from God, a dwelling not made with hands, eternal in Heaven.”
2 Corinthians 5:1

Our bodies. 
Our lives.
Our earthly dwellings.
Paul compares these to a tent.

Our body is tent.
Our life is a tent.

Not comfortable.
Not always enjoyable.
Always something better in mind.

We think life should be enjoyable and easy.
After all,
Jesus said to follow Him 
for His burden is easy and His load is light.

Jesus also told us we must pick up our crosses and carry them,
much like He picked up the cross,
carried it to Calvary,
and died upon it for our sins.

How do these two work together?
Like justice and mercy,
can these two opposites live in harmony?

We like to think in the short term,
as in now.
Jesus doesn’t exactly adhere to our time frame.
He thinks eternally.

we could stay in a 5 star hotel.
We could be comfortable
but what if that comfort damages our souls?
Is that night of blissful sleep worth it?
Is it better to have an easy breezy life here
only to suffer eternal damnation?

And if we stay in the tent?
Have a sleepless night.
Experience pain
and sorrow
and challenges.
What if that benefits our souls?
Is it better to have a life that isn’t so picture perfect
so that we can experience the joys of eternal life?

If your experience of your tent, your earthly dwelling,
is much like my tent experience while camping,
then praise God!

Praise God if this tent is uncomfortable.
Praise God if this life isn’t always easy.
Praise God through the struggle,
and anger.

He asked you to pick up your cross.
If you have ever struggled, you’ve picked up your cross.

Get ready for an eternal experience,
one that far surpasses any 5 star hotel.

“I consider that the sufferings of this present time are as nothing compared with the glory to be revealed for us.”
Romans 8:18