lunes, 26 de septiembre de 2016

The Healing of Forgiveness

      This morning as I was doing my devotional I came upon the story of the women with the issue of blood in Mark 5:25-34 and Luke 8:43-48. Scholars say this woman suffered most likely of a hemorrhage like a menstrual or uterine disorder which according to the law of that time she was unclean pretty much ALL the time and nobody could touch her. 

She spent twelve years in that condition and probably like an outcast. But one of the amazing things about this woman was that she does not loose hope. The Bible says she had suffered a great deal from many doctors and over the years and spent all she had in trying to get better. But actually she did not got better, she got worse. I just can't imagine her sadness knowing she could not get married or have children because this illness and knowing no doctor could change her situation. She was probably feeling ashamed because the law considered her unclean even though she did not have control over her situation. She was probably experience a lot of fear because wherever she went her sickness could be expose and then nobody would want to be around an unclean person.

One day she heard about Jesus. You would think after twelve years of not getting better and spending all here resources on doctors with this chronic bleeding she probably have become a very bitter, whiny, and hopeless woman that complain all the time about her chronic illness and situations and resented life. But not that was not her case. As soon as she heard Jesus was coming she had faith that Jesus COULD heal and her shame and fear were not going to stop her from reaching Him in the middle of the crowd. So she said “If I can just touch His robes, I’ll be made well”(Mark 5:28). So she went into the middle of the crowd and she had FAITH that Jesus could heal her. Even thought there had been rejection, disappointment, abandonment, shame, sickness, pain, doubts and fear all her life that did not stop her from reaching out to Jesus.  As soon as she touched Him “immediately her flow of blood ceased and she sensed in her body that she was cured of her affliction”(Mark 5:29). 

WOW isn’t this amazing? 

Then Jesus turned around looking to find who had touched Him and He called her “daughter, your faith has made you well. Go in peace and be free from your affliction”(Mark 5:34). Not only had Jesus healed her physically but He also took away all the loss and pain her illness caused for twelve years. She probably was just looking for healing physically but God knew more than her what she need it. Jesus removed all the pain, sickness, shame, fear, disappointment, rejection, abandonment and made her whole.  

God is always full of compassion and He is waiting for us to approach him because in His embrace there is forgiveness and healing. There is no such thing as too late or too early. He is always on time. He is always waiting for us to reach out for Him in faith and He never will disappoint us. 

Another story that stood out today in the same reading is the blind beggar in Luke 18:35-43. When I
was a little girl in Sunday school this story was taught to me many times and we would see the pictures of the beggar in the ground and in capital letters, to show he was shouting, “Jesus, son of David, have mercy on me”(Luke 18:37). Then the Sunday school teacher would asked us “what did the blind beggar shout?” and we would shout at the top of our lungs “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me” it was the best part of the whole story when I was a child. 

What is great about this story that also came to mind is that nothing stops this man from shouting as hard as he could for Jesus. Nothing stopped this man from crying out to God for help. He had faith the only person who could restore his sight was Jesus. 

The Bible says that people told him to turn around and told him to quiet down. They were probably thinking “the master dose not have to time for a blind man or a beggar like you.” “You are a nobody and Jesus doesn’t have time for you.” That people trying to quiet him down did not intimidate him. Totally the opposite he shouted louder and cried out all the more.
So Jesus again stopped in the midst of the crowd and commanded this man to be brought to Him and he asked “what do you want Me to do for you?”(Luke18:40). Powerful question! He said “Lord, I want to see” and Jesus healed him and returned not only his physical but spiritual sight because he came to Jesus believing in who He was.  Jesus the Son of David.  The Savior. At the end we see all the people glorifying and giving praises to God. And the beggar became a follower of Jesus. 
These two stories, and many, many more in the Bible, shows the faithfulness of God. I don't know what you might be going through but it is never too late or too early to cry out to Jesus like the beggar blind or to reach out for Jesus robe like woman with the issue of bleeding. These peoples situations’, pain and sickness were not the end of them but were the main things to strength their faith and glorify God through their healing. 

God is not just interested only in our physical healing but also in our spiritual healing. When we answer God’s call we are willing to give up those things that caused to be less than what God calls us to be. God does not just want one little thing about us but our whole self. When we reach out for Him in faith we probably would have one thing in mind but God has many more and greater things for us. He is working in our lives to makes us whole. 

"And He [Christ] died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for Him who died for them and was raised again" (2 Co 5:15).

Thank you Jesus, 

© Carla Delgado Sparks

martes, 20 de septiembre de 2016

When Trials Come Our Way

A couple years ago I was in a conference and one of the speakers said “suffering and hard times
are  sweet moments that draw us closer to God” I though in my mind “sweet moments, I don't want those sweet moments in my life. I just want to live happily ever after” since I was very young I love the Lord and I wanted to serve Him but I did not want hard stuff to happen in my life and I certainly did not want to suffer. I would pray something like “keep the hard times very far, far away from me and take me from victory to victory.” But there is not victory without a battle and I am talking about spiritual battles. “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places”(Ephesians 6:12). By the way, we sometimes confuse spiritual battles with conflict and argument with people and that is not what I am talking about (Colossians 3:13). Although the devil could use people to distract us from the work of God is trying to accomplish in our lives we need to be aware who we really are against.  

  I believe that, while in this earth, because of the consequence of sin, we will always have times when we are going to experience suffering, disappointment and trials. We can embrace that journey with Jesus or be led astray by Satan into a deep pit of despair and hopelessness. I decided in my heart I would always choose Jesus no matter the outcome. I have to say that in the past my least favorite story of the Bible was Job. I always was like to skip to the blessing part of the book. I know I am NOT Job and I would never want to be Job.  But there is a reason why his name is in the Bible and not mine and his example to follow is completely amazing. I’ll tell you a little bit about his story but I definitely recommend you to read the book your selves.  Job was a man who loved the Lord and Satan told God “A man will give all he has for his own life. But now stretch out your hand and strike his flesh and bones, and he will surely curse you to your face”(Job 2:4-5). God allowed that to
happen but told Satan DO NOT touch his heart. So there began one disaster after another for Job. He lost everything: his wealth, his children, his friends, his health and to top it off his wife told him to curse God and commit suicide. Job is a model to follow because he never renounce or denied God. This also tells us about the limitation of humans to understand God and His ways. There are some “Why Lord?” questions That will never have answers until we are before God.  At the end of the book God pours out His grace and restored to Job twice the number of livestock and possessions he had before his calamity. He had ten more children and he lived for a very long time. God blesses the righteous, but in His sovereignty He works in His own purpose and His own time. One of the things I love about Job is his endurance in the midst of tragedy. Also that God proves our faith and establishes the limits for both the testing and wrestling with Him. So there is no trial or suffering that last forever. 

  The Bible says Jesus overcame this world and its desires (John 16:33). In this Bible verse we can find comfort and hope because there will be trials, disappointments, and suffering but Jesus will always be capable of overcoming them as we turn to Him. No sin is greater than God’s power. There is absolutely NOTHING Jesus can not overcome. 

Through trials and when things go out of our control is when there is no other choice but to depend deeply on Jesus; our obedience and love for Him is tested. Do I love God because of the things He gives me or for who He is?  What if God take everything away from me? Will I still love Him and follow Him? What if God never change my situation? Will I still be faithful to Him? What if God says “NO that is not my will for you I have something different for you.” Will I still trust Him? I think those are the moments that humble us and nobody posts those on social media, at least not me. It leads us to have a grateful heart and that is easy to say but difficult to do when everything goes wrong. To have a grateful heart when there is a cross to carry is difficult. To have a grateful heart when others are having what you wanted is difficult but not impossible.  The scriptures says “But in Christ, we know that we can “Rejoice always”(1Thessalonians 1:16-18)

The other day I decided to choose Jesus even if the things never change and even if the things get worse I will still trust Jesus because I think it is infinite times better to follow Him and be obedient to Him than to be separate of Him. I will still pursue Him and I will want more of what He wants because His will is good, pleasing and perfect. I actually think of how many stupidities I would have avoided had I turned first to Him and His wisdom instead of my “brilliant thinking.” Today I can say the best decisions in my life has been made with divine wisdom As I grasp with all my strength at my Savior I don't want to control everything in my life, marriage or kids. I want to be where God wants me to be and do what God wants me to do. 

That is a daily decision I made and it requires submission to His will.  But there is indescribable joy and peace when we are where God wants us to be and when we do what God wants us to do. I don't want the things to go my way but God’s way. I am grateful that in this journey I am not walking alone but God is guiding me. I am glad that God never gets tired of forgiving me and giving me grace in abundance. It fills me with peace when He assures my heart and tells me “you might not see it but I am always working for your good.” I am extremely blessed to know that what the devil meant for our destruction God uses for our good and the blessing of many others. You see God is glorified in our weakness because when everybody see us at our worst; He is glorified when he raise us from our ashes and he gets all the glory and power. He knows we can’t in our strength but we can always overcome sin in His strength and power. Yes, the devil is after destroying lives but God is after saving them, restoring them and He exalts His name on high by doing this. As long as we have Him there is always hope, salvation, redemption, restoration, and love for us. He never runs out of love for us.  

When I was younger I would hear the testimonies of people and I would be completely amazed by their testimonies and what God did in their lives and I thought “that just happen to people in the spotlight that God wants to use in big ways.”  Yet, during this past year I have met so, so  many people that are not famous preachers and their lives have been delivered from bondage, healed and completely restored. God has show me again He never disappoints those who trust Him and lean on Him. I am amazed… blown away…. I just think God your work in their lives in such a mighty way. God you rescued them from the gates of hell and bring them to be whole in you. God is still in the work of changing very messed up lives. There is no hopeless situation for Him. There is no unpardonable sin for Him. God during this time has broken many of my legalistic views and perceptions  and once again brought the gospel alive and more real than ever before.

Thank you Jesus, 
Carla -

© Carla Delgado Sparks

lunes, 25 de enero de 2016

Agradecimiento Y Contentamiento

Contentamiento en la vida de un cristiano es un obediencia a Dios. Es algo que yo siempre quiero tener aun cuando estoy pasando por momentos muy tristes y difíciles. Pero como el cristiano puede tener contentamiento aun en circunstancias difíciles? Me refiero a..... cuando pasamos por la muerte de un ser querido, una enfermedad incurable, un hijo adulto rebelde, dificultades financiares, adicciones, falta de trabajo, un familiar gravemente enfermo(a), ver el mundo en caos y guerras y la liste sigue.

Sin embargo, en la Biblia Dios nos dice que que tenemos que estar satisfechos en cualquiera sea nuestra situación. No es algo que viene fácilmente por que nuestra naturaleza pecaminosa tiene la tendencia a quejarse de todos y por todo.
 "No digo esto porque esté necesitado, pues he aprendido a estar satisfecho en cualquier situación en que me encuentre." Filipenses 4:11
 Pablo nos retrata un hermoso ejemplo de un cristiano maduro en la fe. Una persona que esta satisfecha cualquiera sea la situación es una persona que confía en Dios sin dudar.

Contentamiento es un resultado de confiar en Dios, es tener fe que El esta con nosotros y es por nosotros. Confiar en Dios es saber que las manos de nuestro Señor Jesucristo siempre nos sostienen. Confiar en Dios es saber que el tiene al mundo entero en su manos. Confiar en Dios significa que yo no me amargo por las cosas injustas que pasan por que se que Dios tiene control de todo.

La falta de confianza en Dios es falta de fe y de estar a solas con el. Muchas veces confundimos esto con lo que hacemos para Dios. Pero si usted esta involucrado en todos los ministerios y usted hace todo en la iglesia pero no pasa tiempo a solas con Dios llegara un punto en que seremos igual en los que no creen en Dios.  No podemos reemplazar nuestra relación con Dios por las cosas que hacemos en el ministerio. Ojo que tenemos que tener en cuenta nuestras prioridades. Numero 1: Pasar tiempo a solas con Dios.

Pasar tiempo a solas con Dios NO ES una oración rápida en el carro durante el trafico. NO ES una pequeña oracion antes de comer. NO ES leer la Biblia DOS minutos antes de quedarme dormida. NO ES el estudio bíblico en grupo. ES ESTAR en nuestro cuarto a solas con Dios en oración y lectura de la palabra. Estudiando las sanas escrituras es un deber de todo creyente para vivir en obediencia y contentamiento.

Como es que NO podemos pasar un día sin television, internet, Facebook, el celular? pero cuando tenemos que escudriñar las escrituras y estar en clamor a Dios ahi si los posponemos hasta que nos acordamos. Y luego andamos amargados, enojados, quejambrosos, y tristes. Y el tiempo a solas con Dios? La Biblia empolvada sin tocar en algún cajonsito de la casa. NO, que indignación conmigo misma! Salmos 1:2 nos dice que debemos estar meditando en las escrituras día y noche.

"con gozo dando gracias al Padre que nos hizo aptos para participar de la herencia de los santos en luz;  el cual nos ha librado de la potestad de las tinieblas, y trasladado al reino de su amado Hijo, en quien tenemos redención por su sangre, el perdón de pecados." Colosenses 1:12-14
Credito AmmirataDaniela
Agradecidos a pesar de. AGRADECIDOS... leyó bien. Cuando nosotros no tenemos lo que queremos y nos ponemos como unas chiquitos a quejarnos. Dios que nos dice? que tenemos que estar agradecidos en las cosas buenas y las malas porque Dios lo ha querido asi. AH NO PUES ahi si no funciono. Que creen que Dios es? el genio de la lampara. No, queremos cuestionar la soberanía de Dios. No, queremos cuestionar su planes. No, queremos cuestionar sus propósitos. Por que? Siempre la voluntad de Dios es buena, agradable y perfecta (Romanos 12:2).

Tengo la esperanza que Dios nos de su perspectiva mientras pasamos momentos difíciles y que recordemos que Dios lo quiso así.  Que nuestra oración sea "Padre que no se cumpla mi voluntad, sino la tuya."

© Carla Delgado Sparks

viernes, 27 de marzo de 2015

Mi Vida (Ahora) Con Cuatro Hijos y Un Marido

Eran las 6:00am y uno de mis niños estaba llorando. Necesitaba chequear que era lo que necesitaba. Quería descansar un poco mas pero uno de mis pequeños me llamaba. En una hora también tocaba levantarse para llevar a mi hijo Christopher a la escuela. Si, hubiera querido una hora mas de dormir pero parecía que eso no iba a pasar hoy. Ya eran las 6:55am y tiempo de alistar a mi hijo mayor para ir a la escuela. Cuando escucho una vocecita diciéndome "Mama, que haces?" No era el hijo que tenia que levantarse, y de repente encuentro otra carita asomándose entre las cobijas con una sonrisita. Oh no! Todos se habían levantado. Eso significaba que había que limpiarlos, alimentarlos, atenderlos y mi día había empezado mas temprano de los normal.

Con mi esposo, por alguna razón después de casarme pensé que iba a ser "Por Siempre Feliz" pero la realidad es que no vivo en un cuento de hadas. Mi esposo sigue siendo mi principe encantador, pero la vida no todos los días es color de rosa. Es parte de ser humanos. Algo que mi esposo y yo hemos notado mientras mas tiempo de casado tenemos es que nos disfrutamos mas y también conocemos mejor nuestras imperfecciones. Estamos aprendiendo a lidiar con las mismas. Lo mejor de nuestro matrimonio es Jesús en el centro de nuestro núcleo familiar. Al final del día sabemos que queremos agradarle a Dios sobre todas las cosas.

Criar a mi hijos y atender a mi esposo son prioridades que yo decidí tener antes de casarme. Lo que no me imagine es el arduo trabajo que implicaba y la gran responsabilidad de ser esposa y madre. No es fácil!!! Me encuentro orando por sabiduría, gracia, gozo, paciencia, mansedumbre (y la lista sigue) TODO EL TIEMPO. Claro que seria mas fácil echar todo por la borda en los momentos difíciles. También seria mas fácil si solo me preocupara de mi; y mi esposo e hijos tomaran un segundo plano en mi vida. Pero Dios me dice que yo soy la ultima en la que debo de pensar. Otros son primero que yo y eso empieza con mi familia. Por supuesto que tengo sueños, anhelos, y muchas cosas que quisiera emprender pero en esta etapa de mi vida me tengo que recordar que la respuesta es un: "no por ahora, pero no para siempre".

Así que mis dias incluyen consolar mis pequeñitos cuando lloran, asegurarme que este sanos, mantener las golosinas lejos, ensenarles a vivir bien y una vida que agrade a Dios. Aunque no lo crean, esta ultima me hace examinar mis acciones muy seguido. Hay momentos en que realmente no se que hacer, solo orar por ellos. Disciplinarlos toma tiempo y esfuerzo de mi parte. No quiero que ellos sufran pero tampoco quiero que ellos sean malcriados. A veces veo los resultados inmediatos de la disciplina pero a veces toma tiempo.

Mi dias de escribir blog no son como antes por que estoy poniéndolos a dormir en las noches. Y generalmente queda uno que quiere desafiar las reglas de irse a dormir temprano.  Mi vida diaria esta llena de lavar platos, barrer, limpiar, corregirlos, amarlos, bañarlos, darles de comer, lavar la ropa, barrer mas, tender camas, y criar a mi hijos. Todas son las cosas mas mundanales que puedan existir. No estoy al frente de una gran empresa o en una gran firma contable. Pero estoy invertiendo en mi hogar. No es lo "popular" or lo mas "chevere". Pero al final mi meta es que esta inversion que hago ahora, valga la pena en la vida de mis hijos en el futuro. Y eso (con mucha humildad me expreso) lo pongo en manos de Dios diariamente.  Quiero que sean hombres de Dios y tenga vidas plenas y saludables.

Y esa es basicamente mi vida con cuatro hijos y un marido.

Tener amor es saber soportar; es ser bondadoso; es no tener envidia, ni ser presumido, ni orgulloso, ni grosero, ni egoísta; es no enojarse ni guardar rencor; es no alegrarse de las injusticias, sino de la verdad. Tener amor es sufrirlo todo, creerlo todo, esperarlo todo, soportarlo todo. 1 Corintios 13:4-7

Dios los bendiga,

© Carla Delgado Sparks

domingo, 11 de mayo de 2014

Feliz Dia de las Madres

   Felicidades a todas las mujeres por este día tan especial! Dios no has dado la facultad de ser madres y dar vida. De criar hijos y que sean la próxima generación de líderes y emprendedores. Todas esas cosas grandiosas. ¿Qué madre quiere tener a un hijo perdedor? Todas queremos que triunfen y tenemos los mejores futuros pensados para ellos. Pensamos en el proximo presidente de la república o quizás un gran empresario(a). Todas esas cosas son maravillosas pero que pasa cuando nos olvidamos de inculcar en su vida a Jesus. Creo que uno de mis grandes temores es que mis hijos crezcan sin Dios. Sin tener esa relación con Jesus.

   Jesucristo va ser la ancla de su vida para que no se pierdan en un mundo que ofrece ambiciones, egoísmo y una vida sin moral. Tiene que haber un cambio de corazón y pensamiento en la persona. Se decía que había un niño muy travieso y su madre le dijo: "estate quieto o te voy a castigar" el niño obedeció físicamente pero en su corazón seguía igualmente de travieso. El seguía corriendo y haciendo travesuras. 

Sin un cambio de corazón no hay un cambio de acciones.  Mi prioridad numero uno es instruir a mis hijos en los caminos de Dios. Sabré que aun cuando yo no este ellos buscaran la sabiduría de los Sagrados Textos y nuestro Padre Celestial. 

Instruye al niño en su camino,y ni aun de viejo se apartará de él. Proverbios 22:6

© Carla Delgado Sparks

domingo, 22 de septiembre de 2013

Corazones Tiernos

Acabo de dar a luz mi ultimo tesoro mas preciado. Mi hijo Jacob Dylan Sparks y me siento muy contenta. Nunca hubiera pensado que Dios me iba a dar cuatro hermosos varones que llenan mi vida de sorpresas, alegrías y (no queria mencionarlo) travesuras. 

El otro día estábamos con mi esposo hablando de los valores que queremos que nuestros hijos aprendan mientras crecen. Es importante para nosotros que ellos crezcan con un profundo amor hacia Dios y acciones de agradecimiento hacia Dios. 

Uno de los valores que queremos inculcarles es la compasión para con otros. Estábamos arreglando unas maletas para niños de escasos recursos de una obra que se estaba haciendo en nuestra iglesia. Y cuando las arreglábamos mi hijo Chris no entendía lo que hacíamos así que le explicamos. Le tomo un poco de tiempo comprender pero sabemos que su corazón esta muy tierno y su entendimiento se esta desarrollando. Queremos que desde muy tierna edad sea influenciados por la Palabra de Dios y que el evangelio sea una acción en sus pequeñas vidas.  

Aprovechamos cada pequeña oportunidad que tenemos para motivarlos a cada uno de ellos de acuerdo a su edad y oramos para que ninguno se aparte de la fe para que sean sean hombres conforme al corazón de Dios. 

"Así que la fe proviene del oír, y el oír proviene de la palabra de Dios." Romanos 10:17

© Carla Delgado Sparks

lunes, 4 de marzo de 2013