Sunday, March 31, 2013

For your Sunday

So the women hurried away from the tomb,
afraid yet filled with joy, and ran to tell his disciples.
Suddenly Jesus met them. "Greetings," he said.
They came to him, clasped his feet and worshiped him.
Then Jesus said to them, "Do not be afraid. 
Go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee; there they will see me."

Matthew 28:5-10

"Our God is not dead. He's alive. He's alive."

Friday, March 29, 2013


On this Good Friday, I think it's the first time I'm fully understanding the magnitude of the death of Jesus Christ and what it should mean to me as a Christian. That He would die for me...for my brokenness.

Today, I'm blown away and without words.

Today, worship seems the only response.

I am redeemed
You set me free
So I'll shake off these heavy chains
And wipe away every stain
Now I'm not who I used to be
I am redeemed
I am redeemed
Redeemed, by Big Daddy Weave

Today, I'm in awe of how I've lived a life unworthy of what happened at the cross, but grateful at the same time. I almost allowed the weight of the brokenness I felt this past week keep me in those chains, but once again He set me free.

So I lift up my head and thank God for not being done with me.

"I am redeemed."

Linking with Lisa-Jo Baker for Five Minute Friday

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Go and Do the Right Thing

I was a weeping fool yesterday. Those all too familiar words, I'm not good enough, kept playing over and over again in my mind. My heart knows this is not truth, but it was a day where I felt the weight of those words.

Paul tells us, God will comfort us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves received from God (2 Corinthians 1:4). But how? How do I share with others the same comfort He has given me? The question I found myself asking during my day of weeping was what if I'm not good enough?

Our pastor began his most recent message by reminding us of the mission of our church, "Glorifying God by developing fully devoted followers of Jesus Christ to affect our world."

And here my weeping began... 

I wept over the years and years of pain. I wept over finding God. I wept most because all I want is to share how He is healing me. As I sat there weeping I questioned how He could use me. God, I'm not good enough. Honestly, what I was saying was, God, if I'm not a good enough writer, how do you want to use me?

You see, I've always wanted to be perfect at something... anything. I just want one thing. Give me that one thing God and I will use it to glorify you. If writing isn't my one thing, then what is?

The thought that writing may not be my gift hurts. So I wept...and I wept. All that weeping was over those same words, I'm not good enough. And it became more than questioning whether or not I was a good writer, but whether or not I was good at anything. At the end of the day I was exhausted from my weeping. And here I am taking a day off of work because I simply didn't have strength for another day. All this weeping led me to questioning God. There I said it! This is where my day ended. God, are you really there?

My pastor shared these words during his sermon and this is where my heart rests today. "Jesus is our living hope. Embrace with all honesty your story and what Jesus has done in your life and what He continues to do." And he then said those beautiful words, I once was lost and now I'm found, from the hymn "Amazing Grace."

And my weeping begins again...

But my weeping isn't over those words, I'm not good enough: it's from knowing, I once was lost and now I'm found. I can place these hurts of mine into His loving hands and allow Him to replace them with peace. A peace that is only found in Him. 

I can embrace with all honesty my story—I'm broken and there are hurts that still run deep. 


But I'm no longer lost. I am found. He is my hope. He restores my soul.

Maybe this is what all my weeping was for. To once again remind me that He is my hope. Every time I find myself in the familiar place of believing I'm not good enough, I always find my way back to His loving embrace and He says to me, "My dear child, you are more than enough. Now go and do the right thing. You don't need to be perfect for me to use you.

So here I am...writing. This writing is hard. I've spent hours trying to be perfect in sharing my feelings and fears with you. I come across writers who say it so much better than I. But when I hear God say, "Go now and do the right thing," all I know to do is to write. As imperfect as my words may be, I hope and pray that He will use them for His glory. 

Yesterday, I found myself crushed and overwhelmed. Today, with those familiar doubts and fears back in His loving hands, I say to God, "I am glad, not for the pain I felt, but because the pain I was weeping over turned me back to you (2 Corinthians 7:9)."

Sunday, March 24, 2013

For your Sunday

See, I am doing a new thing!
    Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?
I am making a way in the wilderness
    and streams in the wasteland.
Isaiah 43:19

Friday, March 22, 2013

A letter to my Husband

My love,

As our son and his wife began their move across country to a new duty station, for some reason, memories of when this military adventure of ours began came flooding in.

I remember that day... that day when the boys and I said our good-byes to you in the parking lot of the hotel you would depart from the following morning. Each of us had eyes filled with tears. Letting go of you to send you on your way to become a soldier was a mixture of excitement for you, but sadness for us, for the months we would spend without you.

Returning home that night, the first thing I did was pull out a pen and paper and write that first letter to you.
"Dear, I just returned home a bit ago from saying our good-byes. We cried for a bit longer and then Zack made a comment to make us all laugh. I miss you already, but I'm so incredibly proud of you."
And here my love for writing began. Here my love for a written letter began.

I waited as patiently as one can for the first letter I would receive from you.
"Dear Beth, I have started this letter at least five times. I really don't know what to say other than I miss you and I love you. I will hold on to your last words to me with every ounce of strength I have."
Our mailman quickly became my favorite person as new letters from you were delivered home.

Then it became time to send our oldest son off to become a sailor. Could I survive another good-bye? Yes, I could because I had learned the secret to survival...letters!

Letters to both of you were written, sealed and mailed daily. Every day I'd race home filled with hopes of opening the mailbox to a letter from one (hopefully both) of you. I remember the day I opened a letter from that son of ours that simply said, "I love you, Mom."

I'm filled with wonderful memories of watching you both become a soldier and sailor. But my greatest memories will always be of the joy found in every letter written and every letter received.

As we prepare to send you on your way again to do the very thing you set out to do, my heart aches over saying good-bye again, but I will wait patiently for your first letter home. And oh, how I will be ready to write to you.

My love, thank you for what I consider precious treasures: letters of love from you.

With all my heart,



Linking with Lisa-Jo Baker for Five Minute Friday
and with Courtney @ Women Living Well

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Broken Jars of Clay

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. - 2 Corinthians 12:9

I've seen it written many times that one of the keys to a great blog post is a vulnerable story. "Dare to be open and truly vulnerable about your life," says writer Mary DeMuth. I saw truth in this when I recently shared about mistakes I made in my marriage. Read post here

I was humbled by the comments received. There was a good deal of fear in pressing "Publish" on that particular post. Would others think I was crazy for sharing these mistakes? There were no comments left to confirm those sentiments, but there were comments expressing gratitude for being vulnerable by sharing my story of love and forgiveness.

It certainly isn't easy being vulnerable. For many of us, being vulnerable is the complete opposite of how we were raised. Stuff your emotions and move on was more of the norm.

I was reminded of words shared by Joyce Meyer in her Amplified Bible from First Corinthians. She wrote on how we are like jars of clay. "Imagine a clay pot with a lamp in it and a lid on it. Even though it may be filled with light, no one can see the light within it. Yet if the pot is cracked, the light will shine through the cracks. In this same way, God works through our imperfections."

Read just a few stories of the Bible and you will notice how God used imperfect people over and over again. If we were perfect we wouldn't need God. Isn't it refreshing to know God isn't asking us to be perfect?

"God works through our imperfections."

For many years I was sure I had failed my children. Their younger years were spent watching their parents go through many battles. Many times I wished it was possible to go back in time and do it over again. Can I please have a second chance to do things right? Hours upon hours were spent worrying about how the choices and mistakes we made as parents would impact the lives of our two boys. How would those choices and mistakes impact them as they became husbands and eventually fathers?

Could it be possible that during those years of pain and sorrow, and the many mistakes, there was something greater taking place in us? Could it be God was using our brokenness to draw us closer to Him?

My husband recently shared with our small group about a time when he asked our oldest son for forgiveness. The two of them had a very difficult relationship for many years. He shared his story with such vulnerability. It's his story to share, but imagine a father approaching his son on the day of his wedding and asking for forgiveness. I imagine a light was shining through the cracks of the doorway as the two of them embraced.

On the day of my son's wedding, I didn't see a young man shattered from witnessing the brokenness of his parents. I saw the greatness of our God.

"God works through our imperfections."

The imperfections of my marriage can seem too great at times. Many times we got it all wrong. The reasons to ask for forgiveness are long. For much of our marriage we relied on our own strength, a strength we simply didn't have. How do we ever apologize for all the pain our children endured as a result of our imperfections?

I can't help but to think of my husband again and the story he shared. Kristen says it better than I ever could, "A genuine apology is a gateway to shocking, glorious redemption and a fresh start." My husband never told me about his apology to our son. I was hearing for the first time as he shared with our small group. But what I did witness is what took place following his apology, a "glorious redemption and a fresh start" for a father and son.

The pain we endured....those imperfections...God used them. He used them to paint a glorious story of forgiveness through a father and son. He uses them over and over as we dare to be vulnerable in exposing those cracks in our marriage. Each crack is another story to tell on how God redeems. Each one leads to sharing the greatness of our God.

"God works through our imperfections."

That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong. - 2 Corinthians 12:10

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

The Forgotten One

"Continue to grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ." - 2 Peter 3:18 (TEV)

My adorable niece was practicing naming all her aunts and uncles. She has ten of them on the one side of her family so for this young and innocent girl I'm sure keeping them all straight can be difficult. I was sitting with her and as she rattled them off and realized she was missing one, and that one was me, she said, "I always forget you."

I teased her about forgetting me by giving her a silly sad face. She went through the list again and with a little help was able to make her way through naming off all ten of her aunts and uncles. We giggled and my silly sad face became a happy face.

But oh how that enemy of mine was lingering and ready to have a field day with those four words, "I always forget you."

We were attending a spring dance show for another niece of mine when these words were said, and memories came flooding in of another time when I was the forgotten one. My memory just happened to be from my own spring dance show back when I was in high school. I don't remember specific details, but what I do remember is after the show ended and friends prepared to go out for the evening, I was left behind. I was the forgotten one.

I've carried that identity for most of my life — the insignificant, small and forgotten one.

You know the image that is shared of the devil on one side of your shoulder and an angel on the other? As I sat there with my niece giggling my way through the temptation to feel that smallness again, the image became all too clear.

Devil: You are still the same insignificant, small and forgotten one.

God: I have not forgotten you. Fight the temptation to believe those words with my truth.

"Remember these things, Jacob, for you, Israel, are my servant. I have made you, you are my servant: Israel, I will not forget you." - Isaiah 44:21 (NIV)

Matthew 4:1-11 shares how Jesus was tempted by the devil in the wilderness. He was tempted three times and each time he responded with God's Word. Read here. While the temptation I was facing that morning was very different from those of Jesus, the point of the temptation was the same. Temptations come to distract us from the path of following Jesus. But we must keep our eyes fixed upon Jesus..the author and finisher of our faith (Hebrews 12:2).

"... Keep your eyes on Jesus, who both began and finished this race we’re in. Study how he did it. Because he never lost sight of where he was headed—that exhilarating finish in and with God...." - Hebrews 12:1-3 (MSG)

Satan wanted to tempt me, but I was armed and ready with God's Word.

Those words, I always forget you, no longer held the same truth to me. They were said by an adorable little girl who I simply don't spend enough time with for her to easily remember me.

I have not been forgotten.

My dear friends the only way to be armed and ready with His Word, is to spend time in His Word. As shared by John Baker in his book, Life's Healing Choices, "The key to growth is to have roots deep down in God's Word." And I mean roots deep down. Time in His Word is needed on a daily basis because those temptations will keep on coming. So "keep on keeping on" in His Word. "Keep on keeping on" towards the finish line. Run with perseverance the race He has marked out for you" (Hebrews 12:1).

“If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” - John 8:31-32 (NIV)


Linking with Michelle.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

For your Sunday

I lift up my eyes to the mountains
where does my help come from?
My help comes from the Lord,
the Maker of heaven and earth.

He will not let your foot slip
he who watches over you will not slumber;
indeed, he who watches over Israel
will neither slumber nor sleep.

The Lord watches over you
The Lord is your shade at your right hand;
the sun will not harm you by day,
nor the moon by night.

The Lord will keep you from all harm
he will watch over your life;
the Lord will watch over your coming and going
both now and forevermore.

Psalm 121

Friday, March 15, 2013

Rest for their souls

Heavenly Father, today my prayer is that you provide rest for the souls of the brave. My heart breaks over the precious lives lost. My mind drifts to those places where our heroes souls rest. Oh please Father, let them rest knowing their sacrifice will NOT be forgotten.

As I remember these brave souls, I pray too for those currently serving our country. As they stand ready to protect, rest probably doesn't come easy. But oh how desperately rest must be needed.

And their precious families trying ever so bravely to wait for their return home. They hold tightly to letters sent home with the comfort of knowing those pieces of paper were touched with the hands of the one they love. A glimpse of their face by grace of technology provides them with needed hope to get through another day. Oh Father how their souls must need rest.

Maybe these are my prayers because of my own need for rest... rest from the worry that builds over soon sending my husband off to protect our country.

There is this one prayer I have Father, that is almost too hard to say, but I know you ask us to pray for our enemies too. So I include them in my prayers. My prayer is that you are able to find your way into their souls and give them rest. Because my heart tells me if they really knew you the evil that resides in them would begin to fade away.

Oh how I pray we all find rest in you.

In Jesus' name. Amen.

Linking up with Lisa Jo Baker for Five Minute Friday

Thursday, March 14, 2013

By the grace of God

There is this great mistake I want to share with you, but sharing is hard. Since launching this new blog I've shared little as it relates to my marriage. This seems strange to me because when I first began this blogging adventure my intent was to share how my story was one of forgiveness.

"My story to tell, is a story of forgiveness. I may not have Dr. in front of my name, but I think the strongest form of medicine is learning to forgive. It isn't just learning to forgive another, but learning to forgive yourself. There have been many broken bones (not literally) in my relationship with my husband. But, I know those bones are stronger because we learned to forgive each other. We are stronger individually, and we are stronger as a couple."

These words were shared in a post from my former blog. As I read them they still ring true. But why is my story one of forgiveness? The why is the harder part to share.

To be able to share that this October my husband and I will celebrate 23 years of marriage is only by the grace of God. When I gave warning to my husband on the topic for this post he asked, "Can you write on the grace of God when we weren't even believers at that time?"

"Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be." - Psalm 139:16

God already knew our story... Yes, dear. I can write about the grace of God.

So what is my greatest mistake? I actually have two. Oh how I wish I didn't have this one or two. While I've made many mistakes in my life, these two... well they leave me ever so thankful for the grace of God.

There is a part of me that wants to back-track a little here, but this may go on forever if I do. Maybe you are sensing my fear of avoiding the inevitable. I did begin this post with a purpose - right? Oh yes, my greatest mistakes. They are actually the same because I made the same mistake twice.

Twice I looked my husband in the eyes and said the words, I want a divorce. Twice I shattered the heart of not only my husband, but of our two children. There are reasons why those words were said, but the words were still said by me. I was the one who wanted to give up. I was the one wanting to break the vow I made to him.

"I, Beth, take you S, to be my husband, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better or for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish; from this day forward until death do us part."

Not only did I ask for a divorce, but on my first request, I left with our children at my side. The second time I asked him to leave.

My husband sits next to me as I write this. He watches me type and eventually asks, "Is that it?"

I know deep in his heart the pain from my mistakes is still there. But my heart rejoices for how God extended His grace upon us. My heart rejoices for how God directed our paths and led us both to forgive.

Can I write about the grace of God? Oh yes my love!

"Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be." - Psalm 139:16

As you read this, you are reading a portion of God's story for my husband and me. His story included us still by each other's side, almost 23 year later, committed to our vows "to love and to cherish; from this day forward until death do us part."

There were many days during these dark moments of our marriage that I would ask, God, are you there? The silence would leave me to believe He was not. I know now He was surely there. It's in those weak moments when we question His presence that He is drawing us closer. I believe the words he wanted me to hear were, "Keep seeking Me dear one. I am here."

And while a part of me may wish I never made these mistakes, God found a way to use them. He used them to save a marriage that needed saving. He used them to teach two people who both were in need of forgiveness, how to forgive.

Oh yes my love. I can write about the grace of God!

To my husband... I love you with all my heart.


Linking with Kristen and Jolene

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Write what you know

Two years ago I made the best decision of my life and gave my life to Christ. In those two years I've been transformed by His Word. As I've grown in my spirituality, my desire to have an intimate relationship with Jesus has also grown.

When I first became a regular church attender, I'd be frustrated when our pastor would make reference to a particular story or character in the Bible and I didn't know what he was talking about. Honestly, there wasn't much I knew from the Bible other than the story of the birth of Jesus. And my memory didn't include many details beyond what I knew from various Christmas stories.

I knew Matthew, Mark, Luke and John were referred to as The Gospels. But friends, otherwise I was clueless.

I chuckle to think of the day I first took those scary steps into the home of my small group leaders holding on to my newly purchased Bible. They were studying the Book of Philippians. My head was spinning and I began to wish I could magically disappear. I couldn't help but to think, what am I doing here?

Here I am two years active participant of our small group and I serve in multiple capacities at our church, including leading our new Military Support Ministry.

I don't share these things to give myself a pat on the back, but to share how God has transformed me. He is in the business of performing transformations! I've heard testimonies from many others which speak to how He transforms. God surely does transform. No doubt!

Recently, I felt God convicting me on praying. I mean really praying. If you asked me if I have conversations with God I would respond with a resounding YES! I can't imagine getting through my day without talking to Him. He is with me everywhere I go. Oh how grateful I am for His presence.

But do I pray to God?

As I said, God transforms. And sometimes He uses others to help move us along in our walk. Once again, He used my dear friend Michele. "It's time for big prayers, Beth." Her words reached down into my soul. There is a reason Paul tells us to pray without's because praying works.

Every part of me wants to share how God has changed this heart of mine. But my faith is still new and there is much I still don't know. Instead of leading down the path of frustration over what I don't know, I now find joy when I open my Bible and He teaches me something new. There is beauty in knowing there is so much more to come.

I've placed myself in the social media world of other Christian writers, and at times I'm intimidated by their knowledge. They write what they know and so eloquently glorify God.

What do I know?

I know God loves you with an everlasting love (Jeremiah 31:3). He will never love you less than He does today, and He will never love you more than He does right now.

I know God will transform (2 Corinthians 3:18). When we open our heart to His love for us, He will transform.

I know God is always teaching us something new (Isaiah 43:19). Every day I wake to His Word and say big prayers, there is something new He is teaching me. He will do the same for you too.

While there is much I don't know, I'm grateful for where I am today in my walk with God. When our pastor delivers his sermons there are now many stories and characters of the Bible that I do know. Instead of wishing I could disappear when with my small group, I pray the time together doesn't so quickly come to an end. And praying is quickly becoming less and less uncomfortable the more I pray.

But I will still be very careful to only write about what I know. The last thing I want to be guilty of is not sharing His Word correctly with you. So day-by-day I will allow God to reveal new truths to me. I will be obedient to His direction of when to share with you here with the hopes of being able to eloquently glorify Him with my words.

Has God revealed something new to you today? I'd love for you to share.

Monday, March 11, 2013

I will find rest

Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light. - Matthew 11:28-30

My Sunday evening was spent catching up with my hubby. It was one of his Army training weekends so we have less time to spend together.

As he goes through his routine on these early Saturday and Sunday mornings of switching from civilian life to soldier life, I prop myself up on the bed to watch him closely. There is something about him in uniform that makes my heart beat faster.

My husband embodies everything a soldier is supposed to be. The seven Army values, Loyalty, Duty, Respect, Selfless Service, Honor, Integrity and Personal Courage, are not values he takes lightly.

When he completes his morning transformation into a soldier, I'm in awe of him.

He makes his way out the door and all is quiet in the house. Even though I know he will return later that evening, he is greatly missed. There is this ache in my heart of knowing what is soon to come. This transformation takes place one weekend a month, but soon civilian life will no longer be his norm.

On this particular Sunday evening together, discussion was focused on making a list. I'm famous for my to-do lists. But this list is one I keep wanting to put off. After he rattled off his upcoming training dates, it's a list that I know I can no longer be ignored. The list has such an unpleasant ring to it — a Pre-Deployment Checklist. And the list begins with the one thing I know I put off out of fear.

Create a will.

So there it sits as #1 on my list. Let's move on to #2, #3 and #4. I'm not quite ready for #1. (Yes, I do know it's something we should both already have completed.) I was happy to see some of the things my husband was adding to this list.

Hire lawn service.
Install home security system.
Complete maintenance checks on home equipment.

I felt blessed knowing the most important thing to him was making sure I was taken care of. He is such a good man! What did I want added to the list? "Plan a vacation!" All I want is time away together to hold him tightly and wish I never had let go.

Earlier on that Sunday morning I read from Matthew 11:28-30. As my husband and I moved past our list making and on to lighter topics, the words from Matthew were playing over and over in my head.

"...and you will find rest for your souls."

The thought of my husband gone for nine months still seems unimaginable. For the most part, since this deployment was announced I've held tightly to the thought...It's still a long ways away and things can always change. As each month passes by it doesn't seem so far away and there is a sense of certainty among his unit that they are going.

Instead of holding tightly to the hope that plans will change, I will hold tightly to knowing when that day comes, in Him I will find rest for my soul.

I'm sure there will be days when the burden of running a home on my my own will seem too heavy. And there will be days when I'd rather stay curled up in bed. God doesn't promise it will always be easy, but each day He will be there waiting for me to lean in and rely on His comfort and grace.

When it's time to kiss my husband good-bye, I can rest knowing God will be his shield of protection.

Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, "He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust." - Psalm 91:1-2

Sunday, March 10, 2013

For your Sunday

Show me your ways, Lord,
teach me your paths.
Guide me in your truth and teach me,
For you are God my Savior,
and my hope is in you all day long.
Psalm 25:4-5

Thursday, March 7, 2013

We say Thank You

I wonder sometimes if we realize how much those serving our country deserve to hear those simple two words... THANK YOU.

And yet, I must admit I can also be guilty of not going out of my way to say them. Every other Tuesday, I made my way to the USO to fulfill my shift and would have opportunity after opportunity to express to our traveling military how much they are appreciated.

Many times I did say "Thank You," but there were also times I went about my other USO duties and those two words went unsaid. The reality of that makes me sad. Was not my primary duty to say those words?

These brave men and women may say, "We are just doing our job." But you are doing so much more.

Some may not want the interruption. But all it takes is a brief eye connection as words are not always needed.

To those I did not properly acknowledge, can I tell you how much I do want to say Thank You? If you stumble upon this page, please know from the bottom of my heart, I say Thank You!

I hope and pray that the ones who really needed to hear those two words, that I did not let you go unnoticed. God, I pray that you prompted me to greet them with a warm smile and words that expressed how much they matter.

May we not let another hero pass through our sight without somehow letting them know the sacrifices they make matter. They matter.

May we not let another one of them believe otherwise and potentially add to the growing number of men and women we've lost because their pain went unnoticed.

There is desperation in my heart to share how deeply those two words are needed. Can you feel it? I so hope you do and that just maybe you won't let the next hero you see simply walk on by. And I say these words not only to you, but as a reminder to myself. My heart breaks when I realize how much I need to hear my own words.

But then God fills those broken places in my heart when I witness what it looks like when we do say Thank You.

This moment I witnessed can't fully be expressed through pictures. As I watched the children of my church walk through the doors with pillow cases they so lovingly decorated with their own hands, tears fell from my eyes. But these were tears of joy.

My Executive Pastor shared how this was a dream of mine. And it was. It was a dream come true to know our heroes will lay their head down at night knowing someone does care. They will know they are not forgotten.

I look closer at the pictures where you see the words Living Hope on the screen. Such a beautiful name God blessed our church with. And what did our church do on that day?

We were bringing hope to the men and women who so bravely serve our country.

We were bringing hope to them while serving in places where hope is so desperately needed.

We were saying...

While I won't be able to witness personally how these pillow cases make a difference in the life of those who receive, my trust is in God. God's blessing was placed on each and every one of the pillow cases and He will use them. Oh how I know He will use them.


Linking with Kristen

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Preparing for Guatemala

Step One: Review trip details and begin praying about whether God is stirring your heart to pursue this trip.

God has been stirring my heart for quite some time now to pursue a mission trip. When my church announced a mission trip to Guatemala this summer I immediately turned to my husband and said, I know God wants me to go on this trip.

Step Two: Attend a Volunteer and Safety Training Class.


Step Three: Complete the Trip Application Form.


Ok...honestly I'm still working on some of the questions, but this will be completed soon.

Step Four: Make sure you have an up-to-date passport.

I'm a step closer to a check mark.

My passport application has been completed and submitted. Excitement was building in my heart as I stood in line at the post office. Why the excitement? I felt as though I was declaring, This life is not about me. It's about serving others. This will also be my first passport and I'm hoping God has plans for this passport of mine beyond the trip to Guatemala.

Jeff Goins shares in his book, Wrecked"We live in a world of pain, but few of us have actually engaged it. We are only passing through the pain, without allowing it to leave its mark on us."

Since reading Jeff's book, I have heard God's whispers to allow the pain of this world to leave its mark on me. To allow it to change me.

One question that has me lost in thought on the trip application is why I want to go on this mission trip. The easy response would be to say I want to make a difference in the world. And, I really do. But what is the real reason? It's about learning to step out of my comfort zone and completely rely on God.

I've shared how we are to surrender our life to God. Friends, He will bless us when we realize how much we need Him (Matthew 5:3). There is much I'm still holding on to. The reason I know I need to make this trip is because God is saying, "Here I will teach you what it looks like to leave it all behind and trust in Me. When you do, you will witness how I will use you as a tool to share My love in a place where it is so desperately needed."

My desire is for God to use me to do something miraculous in Guatemala. Oh how I will be praying for this. And I'd love for you to pray along with me. Please pray for all the participants as we prepare for this trip. Pray for our safety. Pray that we are each able to touch the lives of the Guatemalan people.

May each of us be the hands and feet of Jesus.

"Declare his glory among the nations, his marvelous works among all the peoples!" Psalm 96:3