Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Three Word Wednesday: Be Like Mary {Guest Post}


Oh friends, I'm super excited today to share with you my dear friend Joanne. If I could do cartwheels I'd be doing them right now. She is a delight. She is all kinds of awesomeness. I was so touched by her excitement when I asked her to guest post for today's Three Word Wednesday. While I told her she did not have to write about Thanksgiving, I'm blessed by the words God placed on her heart to share with us.

This is her first time guest posting so please give her a warm welcome. After reading her post be sure to go visit her website: Days and Thoughts. You must get to know this fabulous lady who has a big heart for God.

Much love to you all.
Beth

Without further ado, here is Joanne...

****

It has continued to amaze me that my two granddaughters are so different from each other. I knew that my two children were different from each other but expected that as one is a boy, the other a girl. But with two girls, sisters, I thought they would be more alike.

So it should be no surprise at my interest in two Biblical sisters - Mary and Martha. They were pretty different from each other as well. Jesus took note of it. Luke made sure we knew the details.....

As the disciples were traveling, they were welcomed into the home of these two sisters. Martha, who had extended the invitation, was hustling about preparing a big dinner. Mary, we are told, sat at the Lord's feet. Martha gets a little peeved when she notices her sister is not helping her at all with the preparations. And she complains to Jesus...

Lord, don't you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me! (Luke 10: 40, NIV).

Martha was doing exactly what women in that day would have been expected to do ... prepare and serve the meal. She was the one who had opened her home. Surely she had to recognize the amount of work that would be involved for preparing a meal for Jesus and the disciples. It was a pretty good size group. And men have good appetites! She seems to want Jesus to tell Mary to get up and go give Martha some help.

But He doesn't. I have been stuck on what Jesus responds to Martha for weeks now.....

"Martha, Martha," the Lord answered, "you are worried and upset about many things, but only one thing is needed. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her." (Luke 10: 41-42, NIV).

For whatever reason, the last few days I have pondered why Jesus did not tell Mary to go help her sister. One would almost have expected He would. Rather, He gently puts Martha in her place and affirms Mary. Given that it was Jesus and His disciples and Mary was joining with them, it is almost as if Jesus was saying this,

Be a disciple.

A disciple learns the ways of another. They are trained by the Teacher. They adhere to their teachings and doctrines because they know Him. They become like their teacher or mentor.

I think He would say those very same words to us today. We can so get busy with activities, good ones at that, and mistake that to be relationship and time spent with Him. But that is not what He wants from us. He wants us to take the time to be with Him. To learn His ways. To be a disciple.

As we get busy with Thanksgiving and family preparations, may we think about these two sisters. Martha was distracted with the preparations and missed the most important which was in front of her. Jesus pointed out that Mary had chosen to pause and spend time with Him. He tells us that she made the better choice.

This Thanksgiving may we remember to make the better choice. For it will always come down to choice and the choice is ours.

Be a disciple.
Make the choice.
Be like Mary.

(photo courtesy of Tria Giovan/www.countryliving.com)

Joanne
Website: Days and Thoughts
Twitter: @JViola79


Now it's your turn to share three words.

  1. Choose three words.
  2. Share a post, photo, scripture — anything that highlights the three words you have chosen. (link up your post URL, not your blog homepage).
  3. Family-friendly posts only. Anything else will be removed.
  4. Grab the Three Word Wednesday button on my home page to use in your post or include a link back to my blog.
  5. Find someone (or a few) to encourage with a comment.
  6. We can also connect on Twitter with the #ThreeWordWednesday hashtag.
  7. Don't have a blog? Share your three words in the comments or on my blog Facebook page.
  8. Help spread the word and get others involved.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

A Sunday Prayer



"For this reason I kneel before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth derives its name. I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. 

Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen."

Ephesians 3:14-21 


And I include this message shared today from Faith Deployed: Daily Encouragement for Military Wives as it spoke to the scripture I shared with you.



Friday, November 22, 2013

Friday Randomness (Vol. 6)



Scripture speaking to my heart

"Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirableif anything is excellent or praiseworthy -- think about such things." ~ Philippians 4:8

Devotional Love

"We, too, must choose each day to serve the Lord. It won't prevent the difficulties ahead or bring wars to an end. But oh, what freedom to be able to choose the one thing that can bring us peace, even on the hard days. Since God has allowed our struggles, He can use them—even deployment. Nothing in our lives will be wasted when we choose to place it in God's sovereign hands by serving Him."
~ Faith Deployed...Again (pg. 171)

What am I reading now?

"Will you give me your whole heart — undivided, yielded, and surrendered? Your heart is fragile, yes, but in the palm of My hand, it is made strong. In my hands you are secure and loved, without conditions, and cared for deeply. Trust Me. I will not hurt you." ~ Coffee Talk with Jesus: Intimate Chats with the Savior, by Barbie Swihart of My Freshly Brewed Life. Her book will be releasing soon! I get to be part of the launch team and give you a quick glimpse.

and...

"God is reaching out to us, wanting us to see we need him. But since he is God, we think he wants some song and dance from us—in other words, behavior modification. He actually just wants us. He longs to set us free. And yes, to accomplish all that, he wants us entirely." ~ Anything: The Prayer That Unlocked My God and My Soul, by Jennie Allen

Both of these book are GOOD for the soul!

Good news from Pastor Pete Wilson (Let Hope In)

Check out his recent announcement here. I love how he is offering hope for you and then for you to give hope to another. You only have until December 1st so act quickly. I already have a copy (as you know!) but I'm purchasing another so I can then give away two copies. LOVE!!

Favorite blog read from the week

My friend Karin of Sunrise with a six pack took my breath away with her post The One Word I Want To Leave With My Children. Oh my, you must read.

There were a few more favorites this week...

Michelle DeRusha delivers a beautiful reminder of the only place to go When You're Looking for an Endorsement. "When you go looking for endorsements, look no further than God..."

I don't recall how I stumbled upon the post 26 Acts of Kindness in 26 Days from The Larson Lingo. It made me think of my friend Jenn from Running This Thing Called Life because she has this amazing gift of dishing out kindness daily and then it hit me how we should all be doing at least one thing every day to bless another. There really are so many simply things we can do.

Pray for your spouse

If you have not read, I highly suggest picking up a copy of the book, The Power of a Praying Wife, by Stormie Ortman. We need to be praying for our men. Let me add, you should read this book even if you are not married; you can pray for your future husband!

Jennifer of the Unveiled Wife also shared this week 25 Verses to Pray Over Your Husband. I completely agree with her when she says, "prayer is a vital part of a successful marriage."

Favorite new song

How Many Kings, by Downhere

"How many kings step down from their thrones?
How many lords have abandoned their homes?
How many greats have become the least for me?
And how many gods have poured out their hearts
To romance a world that is torn all apart
How many fathers gave up their sons for me?"

Okay, these lyrics had me in tears this week!

Favorite Internet find

I saw this shared in many places this past week... Homeless Man Breaks Out in Gospel with God of Second Chances. Beautiful!

Favorite Facebook post

Speaking of blessing others, Jenifer Metzger of Sweet Blessings shared a Pinterest Pin on her page this week that was adorable and a great idea for lifting someone spirits.

DIY "Get Well Soon" care package

I'm finding blessings in a deployment

~ Time to refresh my soul with God.
~ Sending my soldier text messages to tell him how much I love him.
~ More text messages and emails from family and friends to say they are thinking of us.
~ Text messages from him just to say good morning.
~ Shopping with my son and his girlfriend (he isn't here to watch spending. hehe)
~ AA changing your flight without fees after his leave time was extended.
~ Hotel contacts who take care of you.
~ Discovering my soldier is keeping a journal.
~ Rain...I feel it helps welcome my sometimes dreary mode.
~ Picking up the phone and having someone come do your fall clean-up.
~ Invitations to dinner.

Do you have a favorite from your week? Share away in the comments. I always love hearing from you.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Three Word Wednesday: A New Season

Original photo by friend Judd Johnson

A new season is here. There were prayers for it not to come so quickly. In many respects it did not. We had a year to prepare. One thing I've learned, you are never fully prepared. You can have everything checked off your to-do list yet you are still not prepared for the day when your husband walks out of your home and will not return for at least ten months. You cannot prepare for how that day will feel.

I held him tightly the night before he left as we lied in bed. Eventually, I gave him space since he needed a good night's rest. My hand continued to stay over his; I could not completely let go.

Morning came too soon. We waited as long as we could before waking our son so he could say good-bye. No matter how old your child is, watching them say good-bye is almost more than you can bear.

It wasn't time for us to say good-bye. I will see him again soon. We will have a few days to ourselves over the Thanksgiving holiday before he journeys overseas. While it wasn't good-bye for us, the time had come to begin the process of accepting he would not be home again for far too long.

People ask if he will be gone for an entire year. I tell them not quite. There are times I get, "Oh that's not too bad." Can I say any length of time apart from your spouse is too long? I know they mean well so instead of getting upset I pray for God to give me the words during this new season to not only minister to military families but to bring awareness to others of the sacrifices made by our military families.

So I begin my new season as a wife with a husband deployed (mobilization stage). I do not know what it will look like. Only God knows.

"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." ~ Jeremiah 29:11

I'm taking it one day at a time.

On the first day I missed him something fierce as soon as he boarded the plane. The gloomy day was welcomed as it matched my downcast mood. It took every ounce of strength to not let the loneliness I felt consume me. I did finally succumb to the bed and cried off and on until sleep came.

On the second day I embraced these truths:

He is with me.

"Be strong and courageous, for the Lord will be with you wherever you go." ~ Joshua 1:9

I do not need to be afraid.

"Do do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand." ~ Isaiah 41:10

He will comfort me.

"You will keep in perfect peace him whose minds are steadfast. Trust in the Lord forever, for the Lord, the Lord himself, is the Rock eternal." ~ Isaiah 26:3-4

I can trust in Him.

"I have set the Lord always before me. Because He is at my right hand, I will not be shaken." ~ Psalm 16:8.

On day three I'm reminded to find the blessings in a deployment. And whatever trials come my way I will considered it all pure joy.

"Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything." ~ James 1:2-4

And I will give thanks to Him for He is good ALWAYS.

“Let us come into His presence with thanksgiving; let us make a joyful noise to Him with songs of praise!” ~ Psalm 95:2

Is there scripture you turn to when a new season is upon you? I'd love for you to share.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

A Sunday Prayer


Original photo by friend Michael Struttman

"...May the Lord keep watch between you and me when we are away from each other." (Genesis 31:49)

Friday, November 15, 2013

Friday Randomness (Vol. 5)



Scripture speaking to my heart

"I have set the LORD always before me. Because He is at my right hand, I will not be shaken." ~ Psalm 16:8

"Even though I walk through the darkest valley; I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me." ~ Psalm 23:4

Devotional Love

"The One who walks beside you, holding you by your hand, is the same One who lives within you." ~ Jesus Calling (November 12)

More from Let Hope In

"Eventually everything we hope for will disappoint us. Every circumstance, every situation that we're hoping for is going to wear out, fall apart, melt down, and go away. When that happens, the question then is about your deeper hope, your foundational hope, your fallback hope when all your other hopes have disappointed.

All of Scripture points to one man, one God, not because he gives us everything we're hoping for but because he is the One we put our hope in."

~ Pastor Pete Wilson, Let Hope In (pg. 196)

Believe it or not I finally finished reading this amazing book. My reading has been a bit slow lately.

What is next on my list? Coffee Talk With Jesus -- a book soon to be released by my lovely friend Barbie Swihart of My Freshly Brewed Life. I'm super excited to be part of the launch team.

Favorite blog read from the week

Shelly Miller of Redemptions Beauty writes "May we never take someone's "yes" to surrendering their life in the name of freedom for granted." -- An Unforgettable Veterans Day Legacy

I also think I really read the words from Romans 15:4 for the first time and I loved how Shelly paraphrased in her post, "Their stories were written so we would remember what hope looks like."

Please take a moment to read and be sure to watch the video!

Favorite Internet find

I'm being a bit selfish and sharing a video of my husband's unit being honored at the Chicago Blackhawks game this past Sunday. You can watch here. Really, it's super cool!

Have I told you how proud I am of my soldier? I'm bursting with pride!

Favorite Facebook post


How one young boy is making a difference

I received a touching email on Tuesday from my younger sister and knew I needed to share with you.


Is this not just awesome?!?! Would you consider joining him by making a donation to UNICEF? You can donate here.

Showing up

My friend Amy Sullivan is sharing at Mercy Notes on the impact we have when we simply show up. "...rule number one in creating community was easy: show up." A great reminder for us all.

I'm humbled

Lauren of It's A Wilderness Out There...And in Here Too blessed me deeply on Tuesday with her Share the Love Tuesday post. My hope is always that others see through my writing how deeply God loves us so her kind words just about made me cry. I love you, Lauren, and I'm very grateful for your friendship.

I'm finding blessings in a deployment


~ Nieces who makes signs for you to help cheer on my husband and his unit as they are honored at the Chicago Blackhawks game.
~ Squeezing in another celebration with family because they simply want more time with him.
~ An amazing Aunt who treats us to a special dinner at her place.
~ Neighbors who invite you over for dinner for a final good-bye and then invite other neighbors over before calling it a night.
~ Children of those neighbors who make a special parting gift for their favorite soldier.
~ A neighbor who makes you chocolate covered Oreo balls...super yummy!
~ One last dinner with two of our favorite couples from church.
~ A coworker who comforts you when she catches you crying.
~ Making a sideshow presentation with photos of our soldiers and their family members for a send-off ceremony
~  Military spouses who warm your heart and remind you we walk this journey together.
~ A family date night via Skype.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Three Word Wednesday: Pray for them


Source: Unknown

Pray for the soldiers in my husband's unit.

Pray for the families who support these brave men and women.

Pray for my husband.

Pray for me.

Pray for all who continue to serve our country.

Pray for our Gold Star families.

Pray for God to move in to the lives of our military families.

Pray for them to know Him.

Pray for them to put their trust in Him.

Pray that they know how deeply they are loved.

Pray they know He is always with them.


"The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing.
He makes me lie down in green pastures,
he leads me beside quiet waters,
he refreshes my soul.
He guides me along the right paths
for his name's sake.
Even though I walk through the darkest valley,
I will fear no evil,
for you are with me;
your rod and your staff,
they comfort me.
You prepare a table before me
in the presence of my enemies.
You anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
Surely your goodness and love will follow me
all the days of my life,
and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever."

Psalm 23

Amen.
Now it's your turn to share three words.

  1. Choose three words.
  2. Share a post, photo, scripture — anything that highlights the three words you have chosen. (link up your post URL, not your blog homepage).
  3. Family-friendly posts only. Anything else will be removed.
  4. Grab the Three Word Wednesday button on my home page to use in your post or include a link back to my blog.
  5. Find someone (or a few) to encourage with a comment.
  6. We can also connect on Twitter with the #ThreeWordWednesday hashtag.
  7. Don't have a blog? Share your three words in the comments or on my blog Facebook page.
  8. Help spread the word and get others involved.

Friends, thank you for all your prayers. They continue to be felt and are greatly appreciated. My husband has only a few more days at home so please forgive the delay in getting by to read the posts you link-up. Thank you for being a part of this Three Word Wednesday community. Your words are always such a blessing to me.

Monday, November 11, 2013

He's Got This {Circles of Faith}



The only thoughts occupying my mind these days are ones related to my husband’s upcoming deployment. This deployment will be a first for my family. One thing I’m sure of as my family enters this new season—God is with us.

"Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand." ~ Isaiah 41:10 

The same God here with me today and always is the same God who will be with my husband while he is miles and miles away from home. The same God happens to be with you too wherever you may be. At times, this can be hard for me to wrap my mind around. To continue reading...
 

Friday, November 8, 2013

Friday Randomness (Vol. 4)


How about we skip any kind of introduction this week and go straight to randomness. Sending hugs to all of you because...well, I just love you!


Scripture speaking to my heart

"I will refresh the weary and satisfy the faint." ~ Jeremiah 21:35

This verse has been on my heart since shared by a Chaplain last weekend. Oh how He refreshes and satisfies!

Jesus Calling Devotional Love

"I will give strength to you, and I will bless you with peace." (November 4th)

Faith Deployed...Again (a new daily devotional love of mine) — by Jocelyn Green

"Sometimes we wish prayer to be the rudder that changes the course of our entire lives. Yet I wonder if it's our hearts—through the small spoken, the actual truths, the directed breaths—that end up changing. And that's more the point than anything." ~ Leeana Tankersley (pg. 31)

More from Let Hope In

"Life is one giant lesson in love. It's not about how much we get (acquisition), how much we do (accomplishment), or how much we earn (achievement). It's not about all the other things we're told life's about. God put us on earth to learn to love. We were created to receive love and give love." ~ Pastor Pete Wilson (pg. 178 - Loving Deeply)

Pastor Pete Wilson writes in this portion of the book what I wish I could say in the Love Others page of my blog (which still remains blank). If it was possible the entire chapter would have been copied and pasted here.

God moments

The military spouses and significant others from my husband's unit rock! God has placed some pretty amazing ladies in my life. There have been many wonderful moments with them this past week. God is SO good!

Favorite blog read from the week

Courtney of Women Living Well pulls from the archives but her post When Your Home Does Not Feel Like A Haven was a first time read for me. She turns to Psalm 23 and drinks in a glass of His living word.

Because I love all these ladies I'm encouraging you once again to read a few of the posts from those who linked up for Three Word Wednesday. The newest contributors are at #15, #18 and #20. Let's show them some love. Would you also consider joining us next week if you haven't already?

Favorite Internet find

Every service member should receive this kind of welcome home: 13 Marines Get Impromptu Welcome Home. And I love that this took place here in Chicago at O'Hare Airport. Kudos to the USO for all they do to support our troops.

What are you reading?

The first Friday of every month the Circles of Faith contributors are sharing what they are reading. There are two ways you can join. Check out the "First Friday Book Faves" to find out more. Surprise, Surprise — I'm over there recommending Let Hope In.

Walking Well With God 

My sweet, sweet friend Bev of Walking Well With God is giving away a copy of Ann Voskamp's book One Thousand Gifts: A Dare to Live Fully Right Where You Are and a DaySpring coffee mug. To enter, subscribe to her blog during the months of November and December. I'd love both but honestly what I love more is her heart and I love when her new post is emailed to me on Thursday morning.

Please forgive me

I've been horrible with responding to your comments recently. Please forgive me! My husband has my full attention right now so less and less time is spent in front of the computer. I do read every one of them and I'm grateful for ALL of you. Your prayers for my family continue to be felt.

Dine-in

What could one have to say about a dine-in? I'm all giddy over the dine-in we had at a local restaurant earlier this week to support my husband's deploying unit. We continue to be blown away by all the love and support. I wish you could all go over to Coach's Corner to show them some love.

I'm finding blessings in a deployment

~ Moments on the sofa when we cuddle together
~ Dinners out every evening because he no longer wants to cook
~ Bulk shopping which equals shelves full of necessities for the upcoming year
~ A sports team who wants to honor our deploying soldiers
~ Friends who offer to take pictures of us together
~ Neighbors who invite you over for one last celebratory dinner
~ The many heartfelt prayers being lifted

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Three Word Wednesday: He is Enough



I'd love to leave you with great words today but I have none. The past couple weeks I've kept my Three Word Wednesday posts short and have shared with you words that have inspired me from the book Let Hope In and left you with encouraging lyrics from the song "Your Grace Finds Me."

What do I have for you this week?

A wonderful weekend was spent getting to know the soldiers my husband will deploy with and also meeting their family members. There is a bond among military families that is hard to explain. Before the weekend I did not know these people. Now we are a great big family. I'm grateful we take this new and scary journey together. God really does give us just what we need.

My husband and I attended a Military Chapel service on Sunday and the Chaplain opened up with the verse from Jeremiah 21:35, "I will refresh the weary and satisfy the faint."

During his brief sermon he said words that have stuck with me. "Come to Him and He will give your soul a place to breathe. He will give you rest."

"Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light."  ~ Matthew 11:28-30

Even though the sermon was short, I still found myself taking notes. I look back at what I wrote and see the words "He will never leave you." As I read them I begin to breathe in His great grace.

Maybe the great words I want to leave you with are: He is enough.

I can feel the loneliness of a year without my husband. My heart is weary and the road ahead looks dark. There is a part of me that wants to crawl in to a hole and hide until he returns. But God (remember, "But God" is always good news) is my strength and my portion forever. He is enough. 

"I am with you and will watch over you wherever you go. I will meet all your needs according to My glorious riches. Nothing in all creation will be able to separate you from My Love." ~ Jesus Calling (Romans 8:38-39)

Is your heart weary? Accept His invitation to come to Him. Apart from Him we will never find the rest our souls long for. In the darkness He has treasures waiting for us.

"And I will give you treasures hidden in the darkness--secret riches. I will do this so you may know that I am the Lord, the God of Israel, the one who calls you by name."  ~ Isaiah 45:3

I promise you, He is enough. He will refresh and satisfy. How do I know this? Because our God keeps ALL His promises. When we accept His invitation He gives us everything we need.

Let hope in.
Breathe in His great grace.
He is enough.

Monday, November 4, 2013

Snapshot Love—serve one another in love



Veterans Day is only a week away but we shouldn't wait for a holiday to show our support to our veterans and serving military. While Veterans Day is different from Memorial Day, I also believe those who made the ultimate sacrifice should be remembered daily.

I share these five ways to serve them not because of a holiday that tells us we should. I share because we are to carry the burdens of others.

"Carry each other's burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ." ~ Galatians 6:2

Their burdens are heavy my friends. Let's help lighten them.

Five ways to serve them:

1. Say Thank You

Taking a moment to say thank you goes a long way.

You can also request thank you cards from Wreaths Across America to hand out to a veteran/serving military when saying thank you. You only pay the cost for shipping ($5.00).

2. Write a letter

Find out more here.

3. Pray for them

There is tremendous power in a heartfelt prayer. We need to keep our troops and their families in our prayers daily.

How about having a military prayer board at your church?


Cut out patriotic stars to use for prayer requests.


4. Start a collection

The number of homeless veterans in our country is growing and the colder months are upon us. Partner with a local VFW or military support organization to collect socks and gently used sleeping bags to be distributed to the homeless in your area.


You can also partner with Operation Support our Troops - America to collect needed items to be included in comfort care packages sent to our troops serving in harms way.

Living Hope Church collected 300 lbs of crackers last year to be included in comfort care packages.

5. Remember the fallen

"To be killed in war is not the worst that can happen. To be lost is not the worst that can happen...to be forgotten is the worst." ~ Pierre Claeyssens (1909-2003)


For only $15.00 you can sponsor a wreath to be placed at the grave site of a fallen hero this holiday season. Sponsor a wreath here.

What can you do today to help carry their burdens?

Friday, November 1, 2013

Friday Randomness (Vol. 3)


My husband and I are blown away by the love and support we have received through emails, text-messages, cards and gifts. God is showering us with blessings through our family and friends. How will we ever come close to expressing how grateful we are? I believe the best way to show are gratitude is to shower others with blessings. More to come on this.

Please know you have had an impact on our lives. We enter this new season with a strengthened faith in God and confidence in knowing we are not alone. He is with us always. And He has given us this beautiful thing called community!

Our cup runneth over. Thank you!


Scripture speaking to my heart

"For the word of the Lord holds true, and we can trust everything He does. He loves whatever is just and good; the unfailing love of the Lord fills the earth. ~ Psalm 33:4-5, NLT

Thank you to my friend Joanne of Days and Thoughts for her beautiful reminder of how God holds true. "We can trust Him because ~~ He holds true." Amen!

"The Lord takes pleasure in those who hope in His love." ~ Psalm 147:11

The verse from Psalm 147:11 was shared by Missional Women on their Facebook page and the words leaped off the screen as ones I needed to hear.

More from Let Hope In

"You can't breathe out what you haven't breathed in. Breathing grace totally hinges on your moment-to-moment dependence on God. We have to find ways to continually "breath in" God's grace." ~ Pastor Pete Wilson

How appropriate to read those words shortly after sharing the lyrics to the song "Your Grace Finds Me" by, Matt Redman in my post Three Word Wednesday: Your Great Grace.

"So I'm breathing in Your grace
And I'm breathing out Your praise."

I can't get this song out of my head...a good thing I'd say.

God moments

Oh there were two amazing God moments this week.

1) Son #2 received a call from his teacher cancelling class this past Monday and we were then able to spend the day together as a family before Son #1 departed. Oh such grace!


2) American Advantage bonus points applied to my account right before booking a flight to spend Thanksgiving with my husband. The trip will be our last visit before he leaves. The flight would have cost over $700; I paid only $10.00. Thank you, God!

Favorite blog read from the week

There have been many favorite reads this week. I'm encouraging you to stop on over to visit the lovely ladies who linked up for Three Word Wednesday. Skip over my post and go directly to the end. Pick one, two or all of them and I promise you will be blessed.

You've never heard of Three Word Wednesday? Find out more here and then join in on the fun.

A Prayer Warrior

I've heard her referred to as a "Prayer Warrior" several times. Susan Stilwell is a "prayer warrior" but there is something more about her inspiring me recently. Even though Susan has had "tech-y" issues with her website she continues to bless others with comment and twitter love, encouraging status updates and her beautiful giving heart. Small things can make a big impact. If you don't know Susan you really should take some time to get to know her.

(Alene Snodgrass: If you happen to stop in, have you noticed a theme with names shared recently? I love the friends made as a result of your Graffiti Summer Challenge!)

A numbers girl (a bit about me)

For someone who hated math in school, I wonder how God led me to this place of spending so much time working with numbers. I've been immersed in them recently. My days are spent explaining expenses and several evenings a week I handle another man's financial life (scary for him). I typically complain about all things numbers related. I'm starting to think I actually enjoy the challenge. Thank goodness for calculators and formulas.

Countdowns

Countdowns are only fun when counting down days until coming home. I'm not a fan right now. But....

I'm finding blessings in a deployment


~ Family photos
~ The many prayers from family and friends
~ Love and support received through emails, text-messages, cards and gifts
~ Stopping to look at each other just because we can
~ Seeing my soldier in uniform (as of today he's an active duty soldier)
~ Yellow Ribbon event with his fellow soldiers and their families
~ God holds all our tears
~ A deeper dependence in Him