spiritual walk

28
Jan

5 Verses To Help Us Understand Change

When people and situations in our life change, it can sometimes be a little overwhelming. Most folks aren’t crazy about change, but it doesn’t have to be a bad thing. In fact, in some cases, it is necessary for us to be able to move forward.

If someone had told me five years ago what I would be doing today, I don’t think I would have believed it. Life has changed! But changes were necessary in order to position me for what God has called me to do today.

What about you? Has anything of significance changed in your life lately? I realize not all change is happy change, but hopefully, even in those times that the world feels upside down, somehow you can find a silver lining.

Scripture is very clear that change was, is, and will be a part of life. So today, I want to show you 5 scriptures that back up that statement.

1. God commands us to change our mindset from that of world-focused to kingdom-focused.

Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect. Romans 12:2

2. Sometimes God calls us to change our physical location.

It was by faith that Abraham obeyed when God called him to leave home and go to another land that God would give him as his inheritance. He went without knowing where he was going. Hebrews 11:8

3. If we are a child of God, our spiritual nature should be constantly changing.

So all of us who have had that veil removed can see and reflect the glory of the Lord. And the Lord—who is the Spirit—makes us more and more like him as we are changed into his glorious image. 2 Corinthians 3:18

4. Our perception of Jesus will one day change from what we thought we knew about Him to a level of complete understanding.

Dear friends, we are already God’s children, but he has not yet shown us what we will be like when Christ appears. But we do know that we will be like him, for we will see him as he really is. 1 John 3:2

5. One day, even the heavens and the earth will change from their current status to something gloriously new.

Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the old heaven and the old earth had disappeared. And the sea was also gone. Revelation 21:1

Are you starting to get the picture? God is a God of change. But luckily for us, it is always out of love that He moves and shifts our lives around.

Today, take some time to list out the things that have changed in your life over the last six months to a year. Then, ask God to show you why the change was necessary.

If we all took a few minutes each week to jot down how our life is changing, we would probably start to see some patterns. I challenge to you to journal any changes you experience over the next 30 days. And then, talk to God. He would love to show you where He is leading you. Will you be open to guidance?

Blessings to you and yours!

 

 

 


Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

 

15
Jan

Defining Your Top Fifty Goals in 2017

We are officially two weeks into the year! How is 2017 going so far? Did you set any New Year’s resolutions, or for those who don’t make resolutions, did you pick out some goals for the year? What’s driving you this year? If I asked you to come up with the top fifty goals you would like to see happen, could you? How long would it take you to create such a list?

Recently, I was asked to list the top fifty goals I would like to carry out if there were no restrictions on my obtaining them. And then, I was asked to label them as a 1, 3, 5, or 10 year goal –meaning the timeframe in which I thought they could be accomplished.

It was both interesting and fun to sit and actually let my mind wander! What did I want to happen in the near future?

Believe it or not, it took me a few days to list 50. Oh, when I started writing my list, thoughts just came flying, and I feverishly wrote them out. Then, around 20-25, the process became much harder. What else did I want to happen? “You mean I can list more?”

More seemed so greedy, more seemed so selfish, but after a while MORE came!

What about you? Are you struggling to set a few goals or can you easily come up with 50? What categories do they fall into, such as family life, wealth, or ministry. What do they say about you as a person or as a Christian? Exercises like this one can really help us do a “heart-check” on where we are spiritually. Listen, I believe we can and should think bigger. We serve a BIG God, and those that make the big ask delight Him!

“Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened.” Matthew 7:7-8

However, though we can ask for anything; we shouldn’t expect to receive everything!!

Now wait a minute, Matthew 7 said “ask, and it will be given.”  Yes, it does, but don’t take it out of context with other scriptures along the same subject:

And this is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us. 1 John 5:14

 

His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence. 2 Peter 1:3

Now I’m just confused!

Don’t be! We should allow ourselves to dream. Dreaming brings creativity and allows us to think beyond what we can readily see. Sounds a little like walking by faith versus sight, doesn’t it? (2 Corinthians 5:7). Yet, as Christians, our requests must align with the will of God. If not, well then, the answer is most likely no! (no magic 8 ball required)

So now, let me give you the rest of the instructions (yes, I left a few details out, but only to help make a point). Once you have your 50 goals and have labeled them by their potential year of completion, from the goals you labeled as one year goals, pick the top 4. How closely does your top 4 goals line up with your Christian faith and God’s will for your life? It makes a difference, doesn’t it?

If only we did this exercise on a regular basis! It could really help to steer our life into a more meaningful, God-oriented existence. And if we were successful in living completely under the influence of God’s will, what would our top 50 look like then? This year, let’s lean into Him and allow Him to shape our top fifty goals! There is no telling how blessed and enriched life will become. I, for one, am ready for it!! Will you join me?

Blessings to you and yours!!

Elaine


The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. ESV® Permanent Text Edition® (2016). Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.

Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

31
Jul

Standing without Stopping

Are you standing in the will of God?

That simple question for many is extremely complex. What is God asking you to do, and are you willing to step out?

Over the years, I have battled that question myself. But this week, a dear friend text me these words: “You are positioned for God’s purpose. You are prepared for God’s plan. Stopping is NOT an option.”

How the last part of that statement rang out – stopping is NOT an option!

There are many Bible characters that come to mind when I think on this topic, but none more than Joshua. Joshua was Moses’ second in command, assisting him to lead the people of Israel to the Promise Land.

He had witnessed the many miracles performed by God, which brought them to the edge of this bountiful land. And he had seen firsthand the lack of faith throughout the people. But Joshua knew his God was faithful and that His power was great. After all, God had answered Joshua’s request to make the sun stand still in the heat of battle (Joshua 10:12).

Now, he stood alone with instructions by the Lord to take the people into the land promised them:

After Moses, the servant of the Lord, had died, the Lord spoke to Nun’s son Joshua, announcing to him, “My servant Moses is dead. Now get ready to cross the Jordan River—you and all the people—to the land that I’m giving the Israelis. I’m giving you every place where the sole of your foot falls, just as I promised Moses. Your territorial border will extend from the wilderness to the Lebanon Mountains, to the river—that great River Euphrates—all the land of the Hittites—as far as the Mediterranean Sea where the sun sets. No one will be victorious against you for the rest of your life. I’ll be with you just like I was with Moses—I’ll neither fail you nor abandon you. Joshua 1:1-5

I can only imagine the thoughts that went through Joshua’s mind, if even for a split second. “Are you sure I am the person for the job God? Will the people obey? Once we are there, what next?” But then I imagine this thought pushed its way to the forefront of Joshua’s mind as he took his first step forward–stopping is NOT an option.

How about us? How do we get to the point that we know that we know we are standing in God’s will? I believe there are two things that must happen:

  1. We must believe with all of our heart, God can do what He says He can do!

Jesus responded, “Didn’t I tell you that you would see God’s glory if you believe?” John 11:40

Faith shows the reality of what we hope for; it is the evidence of things we cannot see. Hebrews 11:1

  1. We must be willing to do whatever He asks!

So you see, faith by itself isn’t enough. Unless it produces good deeds, it is dead and useless. James 2:17

For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope. Jeremiah 29:11

What is God asking you to do? Have you determined that stopping is NOT an option when it comes to both seeking and standing in the will of God?

One of the areas that God has placed on my heart is missions. During the year, I go out with the church to do Servant Evangelism projects. But once a year I also go to Nicaragua. This year is no exception! Our team is leaving THIS Saturday, August 6th, to travel down to Puerto Cabezas, Nicaragua. Will you pray for our team? And will you pray for the hearts and minds that we will touch during our time there?

We know great things will happen if we stand in the will of God during this trip! We have seen them happen trip after trip! BTW, I will be posting photos to my Facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/LoveEchoedBack/, if you want to follow along!

But back to our overall discussion!

What is that thing that God has asked you to do? Does it line up with the scriptures? Will it bring Him glory? Chances are if you answered “yes” to the last two questions, you are indeed standing in God’s will.

Remember, stopping is NOT an option! Step forward into God’s will and know that I will be praying for you!

While I am away, drop me a line here! Tell me what you feel God is asking you to do and how you feel about it. “Talk” to you in two weeks!


Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

14
Jun

Can You Pass the Tissue Test?

Have you seen the commercial for Crest toothpaste that states: “Can you pass the tissue test?” Now, the commercial has to do with the whiteness of our teeth, but I can’t help relating this to our spiritual life.

Jesus has come to save those who are lost, and in that process He forgives us of our sins. In the Bible, sins are equated with “a red stain.” Yet through the forgiveness offered by Jesus, we are cleansed and made “white.”

“Come now, let’s settle this,” says the Lord. “Though your sins are like scarlet, I will make them as white as snow. Though they are red like crimson, I will make them as white as wool.” Isa. 1:18 NLT

Now Isaiah is talking about a shade of white that is not described as off white, eggshell, magnolia, or any other shade. No, he is talking about a very bright, very clean white. And the Bible describes Jesus and his believers as represented by white. Why this color? White is a significant color meaning clean, pure, and righteous. Let’s look at some scriptures that include the color “white” in the description:

  1. Jesus’ transfiguration. As the men watched, Jesus’ appearance was transformed so that his face shone like the sun, and his clothes became as white as light. Matt. 17:2
  2. Inside Jesus’ tomb post resurrection. She saw two white-robed angels, one sitting at the head and the other at the foot of the place where the body of Jesus had been lying. John 20:12
  3. Jesus’ ascension. As they strained to see him rising into heaven, two white-robed men suddenly stood among them. Acts 1:10
  4. Jesus’ appearance per John’s vision. His head and his hair were white like wool, as white as snow. And his eyes were like flames of fire. Rev. 1:14
  5. Jesus’ giving of a new name to believers. And I will give to each one a white stone, and on the stone will be engraved a new name that no one understands except the one who receives it. Rev. 2:17
  6. Jesus’ followers in End Times. All who are victorious will be clothed in white. I will never erase their names from the Book of Life, but I will announce before my Father and his angels that they are mine. Rev. 3:5
  7. Again Jesus’ followers in End Times. After this I saw a vast crowd, too great to count, from every nation and tribe and people and language, standing in front of the throne and before the Lamb. They were clothed in white robes and held palm branches in their hands. Rev. 7:9

Are you getting the picture? 

Through Him we are unsoiled, unstained, and without fault. Nothing represents that better than the color white.

Today, let’s think about what we can do to show the righteousness of our Savior. When our lives are compared to His, let’s hope we can pass the tissue test because our spirits so closely reflect His love and nature.

Therefore be imitators of God as dear children. And walk in love, as Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma. Esp. 5:1-2 NKJV


Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

17
Apr

Four Communication Failures with Our Husbands and How to Fix Them

Proverbs18_21

“You never listen to me.” For probably the millionth time in our twenty-three year marriage, those words came spilling out of my mouth. And my sweet husband, who had continued to work toward completing the task he was working on, looks up and repeats back to me the highlights of what I was just talking about. Oh, I hate it when that happens!

Now, maybe you have a similar situation or perhaps a different spin on this situation. But if we are honest with ourselves, we have to admit –sometimes we are not the best communicators when talking with our spouses. And frankly, that inability to feel as if we are being heard is really our problem and not theirs.

I realize there are times when the communication issue lies with our husband, but if we want our relationships to grow, we have to own our downfalls as well.

When Darrell and I first got married, I was a hot communication mess! At the tender age of 21, having only dated a couple of guys before meeting my husband, I was indeed relationship-challenged when it came to discussing the deeper things in life. After the first big disagreement we had, I shut down. My emotions were running so high; I couldn’t process all that had just occurred. Taking everything that came out of his mouth personally, I just stop talking –for three whole days!

Thankfully, I married a guy who is extremely patient, was a few years older than me, and has a great sense of humor. Though I could never stay mad at him for anything, it took years for me to reach a point where we could have a conversation without me flying off the handle. Truth be told, on a rare occasion, I still have those moments, but they are fewer and far between.

So as women of God, let’s discuss four communication failures that creep into our marriages and learn how to improve our conversations with our spouse. (Trust me, I have experienced them all!)

  1. Use of the Silent Treatment. You know what I mean. You at the height of an argument and he makes that one statement that sends you into orbit, and then suddenly –crickets! The silent treatment is on. You vow to yourself that you are not saying another word –ever. Oh, we ladies are a master at this one. We sulk around the house, carrying on as if nothing happened, with lips sealed tighter than two pieces of metal welded together.

But what does the Bible have to say about all this? For this communication failure, let’s look at Ephesians 4:26-27 (NLT):

And “don’t sin by letting anger control you.” Don’t let the sun go down while you are still angry, for anger gives a foothold to the devil.

Over the years, I begin to realize my silence was rooted in deep anger, and that anger was hurting me more than my spouse. It certainly affected him, but I was the one opening myself up to the devil’s antics. I was the one really losing. Once I got a hold of this, I started taking the time to reflect on why I was so angry, and eventually I learned to go back to my husband, after a cooling off period, and articulate the issue. This was huge turning point in our communication with each other and has strengthened our marriage tremendously. Make a commitment today, that before the sun goes down you will break the silence and discuss why you became so angry.

  1. Emotional Sabotage. In this case, you are probably already upset about something that your spouse has nothing to do with and you are just waiting for a reason to unleash your frustration. Maybe he doesn’t appear to acknowledge your discontented state. Maybe he just asked what’s for dinner. But that’s all it takes for you to let him have it! And there he stands stunned as if he walked into a minefield and stepped on a hidden explosive.

Psalm 25:28 (ESV) states:

A man without self-control is like a city broken into and left without walls.

Girlfriends, life is downright aggravating some days, but let’s not use our men as emotional punching bags. For years, I justified my actions by minimizing how my attitude was affecting our marriage. Everyone has their breaking point and needs to vent. However, a marriage license is not a consent for you to treat you husband anyway you want (and vice versa) and he is obligated to take it! That kind of thinking can lead to a huge divide in your marriage, which at some point may be unfixable. Work on the one person you can work on – YOU!

  1. Dangerous Assumptions. This starts off as an issue in our thought life, but it becomes a communication issue when we don’t verify the truth or untruth about the assumption. I believe most of our dangerous assumptions (e.g., he doesn’t think I am pretty anymore, he thinks I’m too skinny or too fat, etc.) is rooted in fear. In those times, remember 2 Timothy 1:7 (NLT):

For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline.

Are we allowing our own fears and insecurities to fill in the blanks of those crazy thoughts that run through our heads and try to discourage us? Before you assume what your husband is thinking, ASK! It might just cut down on the number of sleepless nights you’re having!

  1. Allowing the Bank to Go Broke. I love the concept of each person in the relationship having an emotional bank in which the other person needs to make deposits into. Those deposits become withdrawals (e.g., your husband feels well-loved, so he sends you flowers in reciprocation). Whenever there is a marriage series at our church, this exchange is discussed. And it makes so much sense! I think it really goes back to one of the greatest teachings of Jesus:

Do to others as you would have them do to you. Luke 6:31 (NIV)

Remember, we not only communicate with our words, but with our body language and actions. If you are longing for your husband to be a little more affectionate, evaluate how you have communicated your affection for him lately. Make deposits into his account regularly and enjoy the return on investment!

Communication is hard sometimes. It involves some work on the part of both individuals. To be sure you are strengthening your communication skills with your husband, remember to avoid these four communication failures: Using the Silent Treatment, Emotional Sabotage, Dangerous Assumptions, and Allowing the Bank to Go Broke. Preventing these hazards can be as simple as breaking the silence before dark, working on controlling your own emotions, clarifying your husband’s thoughts and viewpoints, and making consistent deposits into his emotional bank.

Happy wife, happy life! Happy husband, joyous wife!


The Holy Bible, English Standard Version Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

13
Mar

Singing a New Song!

Psalm 96_1

It was a whirlwind of a week. There is no other way to explain it. From the highest highs to the lowest lows, I have seen and experienced it all.

The Challenges

Some of the events that affected me started a couple of weeks ago, but concluded this week. For example, my husband and I recently reconnected with some dear friends and were planning to get together with them within the week. But then, there was a death in their family. How our hearts ache for them for their loss. But God’s timing is perfect. How grateful we are that after years of being out of touch, we have found them again and can support them through this time of sadness.

Soon afterwards a beautiful soul in our church became gravely ill. The outcome was, well, let’s say potentially negative. A consistent offering of prayer went up to heaven, covering her and the family and beckoning God to that hospital room. And He did not disappoint. Miraculously, in just a few short days, she received an organ transplant, saving her life. And throughout this process, this person faced each day courageously, confidently, and full of faith and grace. It is a true lesson of how we are each in the palm of His hand.

Back here on the home front, I watched my mother, who some of you know is a stroke patient, hit one of the lowest emotional moments I have seen yet. She was so depressed and anxious, I wasn’t sure if she would pull out of it. However, just as the springtime sunlight began to pour in this week, she bounced back and had some really terrific days.

And lastly, after weeks of tension building up over where life is going in this new passion of mine, and perhaps a small tantrum I threw, my husband and I started to talk. Like really talk. We had one of the best conversations we have ever had over how to get to where we want to go next in life, and most importantly, get there together. And if that wasn’t enough, God threw in an awesome opportunity that we are praying over. It could be a game changer, and so we have been at His feet seeking discernment in this decision. The best part–it has caused us to start dreaming of a better future!

Tune Up Those Vocal Cords!

Why do I tell you all that? Because in this life, even those of faith, tend to feel that we live in isolation and that the problems mounting around us are overwhelming. But in these times, God has an unusual instruction for us. 

Sing a new song to the Lord!
Let the whole earth sing to the Lord!
Sing to the Lord; praise his name.
Each day proclaim the good news that he saves.
Publish his glorious deeds among the nations.
Tell everyone about the amazing things he does.

Psalm 96:1-3 NLT

Well, I must admit my singing is more like ‘make a joyful noise’ (Psalm 100:1) then a song, but I try to make the most of it!

Even through the tough stuff, the rough stuff, the sad stuff, the scary stuff–we need to keep singing His praises, and in some cases, sing a new song! Instead of looking at the circumstances, we need to look to our God.

 Focusing on Him brings peace, strength, and wisdom. Leaning on Him keeps us safe in the storms of life.

When We Find Ourselves Out of Tune

How do we find the right song? First, take a step back from your circumstances and take a really deep breath. I get how hard that is sometimes. Trust me, this week, I had to take my own advice! Second, count your blessings. I know how Christianese that might sound, but it is so important. One of the ways my husband and I dealt with the opportunity before us was to write a list of pros and cons. This works in many situations. Grab a piece of paper, write your troubles on one side, but then write your blessings on the other. I am confident your list of blessings will be longer, and your perspective will start to change. Lastly, pray! Once we start talking with God, He will begin to fill our hearts with more hopes and dreams than they can possibly hold. And in that moment, you will find yourself singing a new song!

Hear the words of David, who was no stranger to troubles and sorrows:

You have turned my mourning into joyful dancing.
You have taken away my clothes of mourning and clothed me with joy,
that I might sing praises to you and not be silent.
O Lord my God, I will give you thanks forever!

Psalm 30:11-12 NLT

Thank you Father God that you are with us in all circumstances and that when we ask, you give us a new song to sing!


Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

 

6
Mar

When Our Plans Don’t Match God’s

GUEST POST: MITZI NEELY

Making a u turn

It always feels good to have goals and a plan in place to accomplish those goals. We tend to spend weeks, months or years writing and fine-tuning all the things we want to accomplish.

It’s very time-consuming deciding on a destination or end goal and mapping out just the right path to get there, only to find that somewhere in the journey it wasn’t the direction we were supposed to go.

That kind of revelation can sometimes bring us to a grinding halt. And then we find ourselves wondering, ‘Now what? Lord, what do you mean that’s not the direction you intended me to go?’ After all, my plan was going so well.

Like many of you I’ve been that person. I’ve had to change direction in the middle of something small and I’ve had to change direction in the midst of something of huge proportions. Are the lessons the same? For the most part they are. Are the gamut of emotions involved the same? Absolutely not.

Some of the journeys we have traveled have been long and arduous and planned to a tee. Some of the journeys have been short field trips; the kind that were easy to adjust and we could change course in an instant. But regardless of what the goals or destinations were I’ve always made a point to rely on Him for His will to be done. Psalm 37:23 tells us, “If the Lord delights in a man’s way, He makes his steps firm.”

Isn’t it reassuring to know that Jesus knows something we don’t? He knows what’s ahead and what’s changed that He no longer wants us to be a part of. Things could be rocking along fine for us and in the words of author, Suzanne Eller, in The Mended Heart, ‘Jesus can stop us with a blazing light of glory and a voice of thunder because He knows something we do not.’

Of course it’s exciting when we pray through a series of journeys and find the open doors and the pathways have been made smooth for us to move through.  The challenging part is when we realize we’ve almost reached our destination only to find the door has been firmly closed on us.

That’s the time to re-evaluate our plan and our goals. That’s the time when we find ourselves at a crossroads and we either decide we are flexible enough to make the minor adjustment or totally change our thought process to a full-blown u-turn.

It is so important for us to have intimate conversations with our Heavenly Father. And it’s essential to hear God’s clear directions in the middle of our selfish prayers wanting what we want. His word tells us in Psalm 32:8, “I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you and watch over you.”

It’s difficult to understand why our journey has been re-routed. But it is comforting to know that God wants His very best for us. Why would we get in the way of His best?

We don’t always understand the big picture and we certainly don’t understand the reasoning behind the twists and turns of life. But one thing we can be certain of is our ‘God wants us to pursue and embrace things of great worth, rather than those that hold little value.’ (Suzanne Eller, The Mended Heart)

Even though I struggle to understand all that He has for me, I know without a doubt He has my absolute best at heart. That makes me smile all over. And it reminds me how much better I handle things when I have perspective and peace about the situation.

I’ll be praying for you.

Mitzi


 

Mitzi B&W (3)

This post was written by Mitzi Neely. Mitzi is an inspiring motivational speaker, a gifted soloist, an accomplished seamstress, and a dedicated career educator.  She encourages women of all ages through her experiences and shortcomings. She has been blessed with  a passion and love for people that stretches across the generations. Her heart is to lighten your load, while conveying her message that nobody’s perfect. So often God places certain people in your life at just the right moment; whether the reason is to help teach you, help you grow in your walk with Him, or to simply love and lift up others. Whatever your struggle or need, you will find encouragement through her words. Follow Mitzi at peacefullyimperfect.net because the joy of the journey is learning His word together.

16
Nov

That New Christian Feel

Believers Celebration Sunday

I’m not sure what your church service looked like this past Sunday, but this was mine! At Believers Church, we had service outside underneath a HUGE tent adjacent to the property our church family will soon call home (hopefully within the next 18 months to 2 years). We called it Celebration Sunday!

Yes, we got a little crazy, but isn’t the love of Jesus something to be crazy about!

So what were we celebrating? I am so glad you asked! During this service, we were able to look back and see how far the church has come since the Rescue Project, a former project that allowed the church to build our current worship center. Back then, the church was really no bigger than your average Baptist church is today, and my husband and I weren’t part of the membership! We have, however, benefited from the hard work and strong faith of those who took God at His word and launched out into the unknown “to rescue those who were drowning in their sin.” Darrell and I came to Believers in 2006. Next year, we will have been with the church 10 years! And the growth has been incredible, so much so that we have outgrown our current building and are working toward building a new church that house all the kids, teens, and adults that Jesus sees fit to send us each Sunday (almost 1500 total).

Read more

7
Nov

Thankfulness for Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow

nature desktop wallpaper (11)

Well, it’s November, the month of Thankfulness (which should be every day, right?). So as I reflect on November, I thank God for all that has happen this past year and for all that will come. What I struggle with the most is thanking Him for what is happening in the moment -right now, today! You too! I’m so glad you spoke up!

Crazy how we can reflect on past things or even dream of future things, but those things right there in front of us always seem to elude me. I am sure I am not alone in this, which is probably why Cinderella’s hit Don’t Know What You’ve Got (Til It’s Gone) was so wildly popular in the 80’s. (but I digress!)

I am so thankful for a God that sees me in the moment, and although it is against our nature, I strive to see Him the very same way. I want to catch Him working in my life every hour, even every 5 minutes! Good to know Jesus “is the same yesterday, today, and forever” (Heb. 13:8 NLT). It gives me hope that I might actually catch up to Him someday. Ironic that to get up to speed with God, I actually need to slow down. Slow down from the busyness of the day, slow down and push out the distractions, slow down and listen for a small, still voice whispering words of mercy and grace to me.

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16
Oct

Abiding in the Love of Jesus

Wow, I can’t believe how time has flown!! Where did the last few weeks go? I feel like we haven’t talked in ages!

I wish I could tell you the last several days have been filled with big red hearts and unicorns, but it hasn’t! In fact, it has been some of the toughest days I have had in a while. I have felt the world slowly caving in all around me, and that I was unable to stop it! I have felt isolated and maybe even a little abandoned.

I just wanted to go out my front door and yell to the top of my lungs, “World, are you out there?”

Can you relate?

Well even when the sun doesn’t come up for me and the gray skies hang around way too long, I know this – He still loves me. Even though I have thrown a temper tantrum or two over the last couple of weeks and told Him He is taking way too long on this one – He is still patient with me. And yes, even when my 40-something, hormonal self is just sitting there pouting, though I know what He has promised – He probably is just laughing at me!

The last few weeks has reminded me why I love Jesus so much, even when I am completely and totally unlovable at times. He is faithful and He is true.

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever. Hebrews 13:8 NIV

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