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Monday, March 28, 2011

Disciple Now 2011

We just had such an amazing weekend with some really mature and wonderful kids! I am always excited when Disciple Now Weekend comes because we get to hang out with kids who are seeking the Lord! Oh, how I wish I were so mature and focused on God when I was their age!

We hosted 11th and 12th grade girls at our house this year and MAN did we get a great group!?! I am always a little on guard about who will be grouped together and how the dynamics will work.. you know how kids can be! This year the girls were all very eager to share and include one another. It was really awesome!

My husband had to work some so I did not get to attend the worship services and hear all of the amazing speakers, etc, since I had to be home with little girlfriend. The kids said that it was awesome and the theme was “Reverse”. I heard and saw things about dying to self and taking up your cross to live for Christ. It definitely hit home with the girls and God’s Word is always able to make us think about how we live… no matter WHO we are or how old we might be… uh humm. Let’s just say you didn’t have to attend the services to get the point!!

I did get to spend some time with the girls at lunch on Saturday and after lunch we did a service project for the unwed mother’s home.

I mentioned in an earlier post about how our Sunday school class has been taking meals to unwed teen mothers, and we have desperately tried to get God’s Word into their hands. We can’t always afford to buy Bibles for the girls as there is a high turnover rate, but we don’t want cost to stop us. We started making scripture cards to give to the girls so that they could hear God’s promises and have hope! The cards are great, but they are labor intensive so we got the girls to each write 12 scripture cards a piece… one for each month.. and we put them together in little groups to take to the girls…

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It was so awesome to hear the girls saying the scriptures out loud and finding new scriptures that might minister to the teens who are not SO different from themselves.

Afterwards we had a sweet time of prayer where the girls prayed that the cards might mean something so powerful and life changing to the ones that receive it. It was neat to see their determination to make the cards special and to be willing to pray for people that they don’t know.

Afterwards the girls had a devotional time and then dinner where we talked about setting a table. I got out the good china and glasses and our little spaghetti dinner became a fun time of talking and dreaming about their own homes one day. I was so busy that I forgot to take pictures, but it was a fun time!

After it was all said and done we were tired, but who CARES? Time spent with great kids and God’s Word and laughter and growth and encouragement?!? We’d take that any day! Heck.. we can take a nap later! It was a terrific time of growing in the Lord and in friendships!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

The (Not So) Easy Bake Oven

See this?

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See the words on the front? “Easy Bake”. Yeah.

I remember having said “easy bake” when I was a kid, and so I thought it would be a fun gift for the little chicky!

We got it out of the box.. and immediately had a curious visitor…

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Then we emptied the brownie mix into a little bowl and little miss did the stirring….

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It was rumored that someone licked the spoon, but was stricken down by adamant denial… YOU be the judge.

“Did you lick the spoon and put it back into the batter?”

“No!”

“Oh, really!? Can I take a picture?”

“MOM! I DIDN’T eat it!”

I think we need a few more lessons in stretching the truth.. don’t you?

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Then we poured the batter into the little baking tin and we pushed it into the “oven” (a.k.a. light bulb holder that is suppose to cook food) and we WAITED, and WAITED and WAITED. The instructions say to cook for 8 minutes.. Well, that ain’t the case sister!

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Girlfriend got so tired of waiting that she went and read a book and GUESS who was stuck waiting for the stuff to cook only to tell her that she could not eat her creation because it was WAY too hot! Let’s just say… “Easy Bake” might need a new name!

Monday, March 21, 2011

No Prayer Ever Wasted Here!

Hey Blawgin’ Friends!

I hope everyone is doing well on this second day of spring! (By “everyone” I mean all 5 of you that read this little chicken scratch on my side of this big world!) What a fun outlet though!! I can share my few adventures in life and ask you to pray for me and show you my attempts at decorating and tell you about my little girlfriend and ask you to pray for me! You are going to be sick to death of me asking for prayer, but I so need it! SO, a big thanks to all 5 of you for stopping by! 

Lately, the Lord is putting more and more women in my path that humble me by their pursuit and walk with the Father. I am just blown away by the hunger for His Word and as I see Him work in lives of those who once suffered from amazing hardships like addiction, homelessness and abuse. To see their transformations just reaffirms in me that God is at work like never before and that His church is growing closer and closer to Him. What a challenge to me to be on my face and to have a moldable heart so that He might change me in some radical and wonderful way!

My heart has also been so saddened lately by women who are struggling. Some struggle in their marriages because of so many past hurts that the Lord has never been allowed to heal. Others are hurting because of present hurts and situations that they feel are just out of their control. I just want to say, “OK! THIS  is how it’s done! You gotta lay that thing down!” While it’s true that we have to lay it down,  the Lord just keeps shutting my mouth (He’s so wise!) and telling me to pray. It’s all we can do! It has to be about their walk with God and how He’s going to work to bring Himself glory through their situations! There is a reason that I have TWO ears and ONE mouth! Listen more, talk less, listen more, talk less… it’s on a continuous repeat reel in my little head lately.


Our Lord is so faithful to hear our hearts and know our needs. Everyday on the way to school my little girly and I pray. We have been hit by the economic situation in our home just like everyone else. My husband is a structural engineer and there have just been NO buildings to design. Everyday my daughter and I pray, “Lord, bring more work to daddy’s company and help us to remember to thank you when you answer this prayer!’ Well, NO PRAYER IS EVER WASTED! Lately daddy has been at work late and on Saturdays just trying to keep up with the many small projects that are coming in!! It doesn’t matter to us! We will take ONE BIG project or a lot of small ones! The work has been steady enough for the company to call back some of the employees that were once laid off!! AMEN! How awesome to be able to show our girl that God DOES hear and He DOES answer when we pray! Oh, I pray that she will become a woman of prayer!

It is so true that no prayer is ever wasted should the Lord ever bring me, your neighbor, your sister, your mom or your boss to your mind. He is always here and He's always listening!!  You can also rest assured that if you leave me a comment and ask me to pray that  I will certainly pray for you! What a privilege to go before the throne of Almighty God and know that He hears our prayers for one another! Every once in a while I just pray for the sisters in Christ of this old blawgin’ community to reach those who might not know our Savior through this medium! How amazing would it be for the Lord to reach someone for Him through Blawg’ville??  I’d just love to pray for you more specifically and watch as the Father works!



Jesus deserves nothing less than our hearts to be sold out to Him! He died so that we might have life and have it more abundantly! I know that that abundance is not going to come through anything that I can produce or provide. He lived to love us and died to save us so that we might be in full relationship with Him. His challenge to me has been to talk less, listen more (to Him and others) and to PRAY! How can I pray for you my sweet sisters?


Sunday, March 13, 2011

A Little Change

It sure is starting to feel like spring! I am ready for a change! It seems like we have been sick and yucky for a LONG time. So.. in the spirit of change I thought I’d make a little spring change to the ol’ blawg! Just a background change can make a huge difference! It’s a little busy, but so am I so it works for me! You like?

Today I had a fun time serving in the special needs class at our church. I love to see these kids get excited about singing and they do a great job of just loving on us! Such a blessing!

Then we had a fun lunch with some new (and old)  friends and I took my camera along. I didn’t get permission to share their pics online so I can’t share those, but I can share other things that were fun to photograph!

How about my little hair model??

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HA! The wind was blowing and she turned around to look at me so I took it. So funny!

We also saw some beautiful swans…spring 2011 025

And I thought this picture turned out really cute!

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I am looking forward to a good week! God reminded us this morning that our lives and situations can either look bleak or full of hope depending on our perspective. If we see that any difficult issues that we face is for the honor of Christ and our ability to grow in our relationships with Him then, though it’s not easy, we can choose to rejoice! I am planning on rejoicing this week! How about you?

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

The Power of a Picture

 

Have you ever doubted that God can use you where you are? Maybe you feel like your gifts and talents don’t really fit into what ministry might look like.

Last night our Sunday school women, and a few friends, went to an unwed mother’s home to serve dinner. I always look forward to our time with these women and count it a privilege to get to serve along side the girls in our class. When we are put in situations where God asks us to step outside of ourselves and serve you begin to see all kinds of talents and gifts come out!

In the past it seemed that every month was a real struggle for us to “break through the walls” that the women put up each time they walked through the kitchen doors. It was very obvious that there was an “US vs. THEM” mentality. The girls of our class were really bothered by the fact that we seemed to only feed the girls when we knew that we were there for a much bigger purpose. Yes, meeting a physical need is important and what God calls us to, but what about their souls? How would we ever reach them if no one ever spoke?

We started putting note cards on the tables and asked the girls to please leave us a prayer request so that we could pray for them once we left. It helped. The girls started asking us to pray for their situations and we began to learn things that helped us better know how to reach them. But we were not satisfied. We wanted more.

We decided that every other month we would do a craft. We have done scrapbooking, picture frames, clipboards, and other crafts that have allowed us to sit down next to these girls and just talk. We also found that if we could get them to bring pictures to incorporate into the crafts that they would share a little about their situations and we could offer some words of encouragement straight from God’s Word.

The hard part? Some of them have come straight from the streets into this home for pregnant women. They have nothing. We would ask, “Do you have a picture that we could use for your frame?” and usually they’d go to their rooms only to return with an ultrasound picture.

This is the cool part… God began to work in the heart of one of the women in our class. She is a photographer with a local agency that does school pictures and other things for their agency. She began to think that if we took their pictures and allowed them to have them at no charge then maybe they would begin to see their self worth.

She showed up last night with equipment in hand. We prepared  the girls a yummy spaghetti dinner and then it happened… they started showing up in the dining room. Several of them had had their hair done, they had their makeup on, they were wearing their best clothes and they were so excited!!  They had looked forward to this night for a while and they were so ready to have their pictures made. Some of them already have children and they had worked to dress their little ones in their best so that they could have a family shot done.

There was laughter. There were smiles. There were friends having pictures made with friends. Our class was standing in the middle of these young girls and experiencing something that we’d never experienced in this place… JOY!!

I believe that we sometimes get an idea in our minds about what ministry might look like. We think that we can’t teach or we can’t sing (and we don’t want to take care of kids in the nursery!) so we must not be able to serve. We’ve never written a book or stood before thousands to deliver a life changing speech, but what about what we DO have? We do things in our lives everyday that make us unique. We are nurses, teachers, decorators, office assistants, and architects. We are able to help make a space more beautiful, build a new space or help someone feel better. God does not call us all to be teachers or speakers or singers! He calls us to be obedient and to use what we DO have to honor Him.

I loved just standing there and watching. I watched the young moms talk to our class members like they were friends. I loved seeing the girls smile and realize that they are beautiful. Yes, they are in a hard spot in their lives, but our prayer is that one night of smiles helped them to see that they are beautiful in God’s sight and that He has a plan for them.

Monday, March 7, 2011

What A Mighty God We Serve!

Hello sweet blawg-ville friends!

I just HAD to use this entry to Praise our MIGHTY and AMAZING Heavenly Father for what He is doing in the life of my family!

This past weekend my mom and I attended a brunch at their church. Now, this may not sound like a big deal to most, but lately my mom has not been very involved in church. Not that she never goes, she does go. But to do something extra.. something that she had to plan for and something that SHE initiated and invited me to attend… well, THAT , my friends is a BIG OL’ FAT DEAL!  God was so faithful and spoke so wonderfully to our hearts about prayer and, well, let’s just say that we needed it. I am praying that He will recapture her heart and that she will just not be able to stay away after hearing that He loves her so. It was a wonderful time of being reminded that our relationship with HIM needs to be first and I am believing that this is going to be the beginning of something new in her life! PRAISE THE LORD!

For her whole life I have prayed for this little stink of a girlfriend:

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All of a sudden something is happening in this kid that is just making our jaws drop and our eyes open to the fact that NO PRAYER IS EVER IN VAIN! It has not been of our doing, but totally of the Lord as He is maturing this little girl into something that we had only hoped for a year ago. While she is still not where she needs to be for her age she is still growing in her ability to learn, care for herself and her things and just do things that we have prayed for since we found out that she had some delays. Her knowledge of God’s Word and her willingness to pray for others… well, let’s just say that God is putting something in her that only HE can instill. He amazes me every day and He deserves all the praise and glory and honor! HALLELUJAH!

You know that story in the Bible about the 10 lepers being healed and ONE of them retuning to say thank you? I want to be that one. After all that we’ve dealt with and prayed for and hoped for I just can’t help but to thank God for how He carries us through. It’s nothing short of a miracle when we see things come about that we know that HE has done and I  just can’t help but to give HIM praise!

What are you thankful for today??