Tag Archives: rest

Whispers, Waiting, & Worship

 

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I’ve not written many personal blog posts recently. It’s not because I haven’t had the time or wanted to write. Honestly, I just haven’t known how to put my thoughts into words or turn my words into sentences for everyone to read. Since moving to CO, I feel I’ve been processing so many emotions, thoughts, feelings, and circumstances of my last eight years. Now that I am away from the place that held so much brokenness (SC) for me, I have fresh eyes and an open heart to release, receive and rest. It’s been a hard few months. It’s also been a good few months.

Now that we are somewhat settled from the transition to CO, God has purposefully given me a new season of slow . . . of calm . . . of waiting. Until Jason and I go through church planter assessment in March 2019, we have been graciously given a season of recover, rest and renewal. The present ministry expectations are few, undemanding and refreshing.  Our eight years in SC were without a doubt the most challenging years for our personal lives, marriage and ministry. So what a blessing this season has been as we gear up for a very demanding season of church planting in the months and years ahead!

However, I’m in this strange and weird season of expectantly waiting for what’s next. I’m living in the “in-between, but not yet” season of church planting. Jason and I know we were led to CO to partner with Storyline Fellowship. We know God has called us to ministry. We know God has clearly given us a burden and desire to church plant. But so much of our future is still unclear.

“Where will we plant? Will we rent or buy a house? Where will our kids go to school? How will God provide financially? Who will God lead to partner with us? What is the timeline for our church plant? Will people even come to our church? Can we do this?”

So many questions exist in the wait. So many doubts creep in during the wait. So many emotions overwhelm in the wait. So many feelings constantly change in the wait. So many frustrations are exposed in the wait. So many buried hurts and longings are revealed in the wait. So many deep heart issues are coming to light in the wait. Continue reading Whispers, Waiting, & Worship

Wednesday Whispers #3

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Opportunity vs. Disruption: Paul David Tripp podcast

I’ll never forget the first time I read a book by Paul David Tripp and then attended a parenting seminar with Paul . . . his words left me with a burning desire to know more of God and to give my children a huge view of our awesome God! I have such admiration for this man of God who lives and teaches the Gospel. Parents, you are missing out if you’ve never met this guy!

How to Teach Your Child Obedience (without Raising a Legalist)

“As we are the ones teaching our children about God, we especially need to ensure that as we teach them obedience it does not get confused with legalism. I have too many friends that grew up in households that were so focused only on behavior modification that they grew up thinking God only wanted good works from them.

. . . As we teach obedience we can’t avoid talking about the actual acts we expect of our children, nor should we, but there are certain things we can do as parents to teach obedience without it leading to legalism or the belief that they can earn salvation and acceptance from God by being “good” or performing. Here are seven ways we can do just that.”  Christina Patterson

Be Held (Lullabies for the Beloved) Christy Nockels

This music album is a favorite in our house! I’ve often given this CD as a baby gift. These lullabies remind me to rest in Christ . . . to be held by His unending love and grace. Elysabeth often requests to hear “River of Grace.” It’s her favorite!

What to Do When You Worry Too Much: A Kid’s Guide to Overcoming Anxiety Dawn Huebner

Last school year, I found myself sitting in a professional Christian counseling office. One of my children was struggling with anxiety about school. The constant headaches, lack of appetite for breakfast, intermittent nightmares, tears, and the struggle to sleep had taken a toll on both of us. One of the tools that she suggested was this workbook designed for children. God greatly used this book to give my child language for her struggles and tools to help her overcome much of the anxiety!

Carrot Casserole . . . a family favorite!

My kids ALWAYS request this dish for holidays . . . and often throughout other times of the year. It’s delish!

2 lb. fresh carrots (peeled and washed)

½ c. onion, chopped 

1 c. grated cheese

½ t. salt

2/3 c. mayo

1 T. sugar

1 stick butter

1 tube Ritz crackers

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Peel and wash the carrots. Cut the carrots into small circles. Finely dice/chop the onion. Boil the carrots and onions together until soft then drain. (You don’t want the carrots to be too mushy.) Mix the cheese, salt, mayo, and sugar into a bowl. Add the carrots and onions into the sauce. Pour mixture into a casserole dish.  Crush crackers and spread over casserole. Melt butter and pour over the crackers. Bake at 350 degrees until bubbly. Enjoy!!

Happy Wednesday, friends!

 

 

Navigating Change

In less than 2 weeks, our family will drive away from this house and enter another season of change. You would think that I’m used to change by now. Truthfully, I feel like my life has been a roller coaster or ups and downs every since we moved to SC. But NO. I’m still not used to change. . .nor do I necessarily like it. . .nor is it easy!

I cried myself to sleep Sunday night. I woke up sobbing Monday morning. I cried driving through town on Monday afternoon. I’m just so emotional these days! A million crazy thoughts jumble up my mind and heart. “Are we crazy?” “Can we survive a cross-country move?” “Does God have good plans ahead?”

I struggle. I pour out my tears and heart to the Lord. . . just like I have so very often these past several years. I tell Him all of my fears, frustrations, and feelings. I’ve found He is the only one who truly understands and can bring peace to my chaotic thoughts and fearful heart.

Very gently and quietly, He reminds me of His goodness and grace. He begins to flood my memories with answered prayers, with enduring promises of Scripture, and kind whispers of grace. He holds me close and assures me that “Sometimes God allows change in our lives so we can have His presence like never before.” (Kristen Strong in her book Girl Meets Change) Continue reading Navigating Change

Goodness and Grace in the Grief

imageToday, February 21, 2017, marks 4 years since my sweet mama went home to meet Jesus.

In some ways it seems like just yesterday. In many ways it seems like it’s been forever.

There’s not a day that goes by where I don’t think of her and long for her. We shared a very special relationship that I will forever cherish.  We were best friends.

Grief lingers. Grief hurts unimaginably. Grief robs happiness. Grief separates friends. Grief brings distress. Grief changes us.

I can truly say that my grief has changed me in deep ways. I am not the same person as I was before. Through my grief, I have come to love Jesus in a way I had only longed for and imagined prior to Mom’s death.

I read this question this week from one of my favorite books, New Morning Mercies, by Paul Tripp -“When hardship comes your way, will you tell yourself it’s a tool of God’s grace and a sign of his love, or will you give in to doubting his goodness?” Continue reading Goodness and Grace in the Grief

Take Another Step

One of my favorite music albums is Steven Curtis Chapman’s The Glorious Unfolding. Steven writes these songs from his own raw, vulnerable, and painful suffering.  He has walked the dark roads of intense suffering and questioning. He has personally experienced deep grief. And he has found God to be faithful and the hope of Heaven to be very comforting.

As I was listening and singing along to his song Take Another Step this morning in my mommy-van, I was reminded of several steps that I’ve taken along my personal grief journey. God has been so faithful to me as well and Heaven grows sweeter each day.

But taking another step in the middle of deep pain and suffering is not easy. AT ALL. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve felt that I couldn’t keep pushing through the fog. I’ve wanted to quit and give up on so many days. I’ve cried more tears than I ever dreamed possible. I’ve felt numb but yet so sensitive to people, places, and memories. Many days it has seemed near to impossible to crawl out of bed, take a step into my kitchen, or get dressed to care for my family. Yet, I am making it. . .one step at a time. I am moving from my emptiness to His fullness. . .little by little. And I am loving God more with each day. . .as I daily take steps into His light. Continue reading Take Another Step

When Life Is Hard

I’m sure you’ve been there before. If not, you will be at some point. I’m talking about that day in your life when the bad news comes, life turns upside-down, your loved one dies, or you simply are blind-sided by someone’s decision.

How do you handle those rough winds in your sea? What do you do to avoid drowning? How do you keep breathing when it seems you can barely stay afloat? Where do you turn for help?

A few nights ago these simple thoughts came to mind as I was praying for wisdom in helping a friend who is struggling with her own “hard.” I hope these will be a blessing and encouragement to you today. Continue reading When Life Is Hard

Conference Sessions Available on Vimeo- “From Empty to Full”

 

In November of 2015, I had the privilege to speak at a ladies conference in NC. I have shared these sessions with a few friends in my church who encouraged me to post them on the blog. I pray that God will use these words to strengthen and encourage your own heart. God has certainly been faithful in my own life and continues to move my life from “empty to full.”

In these sessions, I quote and reference from many of the following authors. I highly recommend these books that God has used to bring healing and help to my own life through my journey of grief.  Continue reading Conference Sessions Available on Vimeo- “From Empty to Full”

The Dentist & My Father’s Love

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We were here. Again. For the second time.

Lauryn, with a terrified look on her face, climbed apprehensively into the dentist’s chair. She knew what was ahead. She had been through this before!

Having four teeth pulled was no joy-ride. It was rather horrific to a ten year old girl who struggles very much with fear of pain.

As I gently held both of her hands in mine, I winced in my own heart as she strangled my fingers with her death grip. I knew she was terrified! As her tears began to flow freely into the sides of her hair, my own tears welled up within my eyes. As she tried to resist the pain and endure the struggle to remain in that chair, I thought of how often I try to resist pain. Pain that I know in my mind will be worth it. But pain that my heart can barely seem to endure. Continue reading The Dentist & My Father’s Love

When Darkness Falls

The Little Family-51-November 8, 2015

Exactly three years ago this weekend, the darkness was falling fast into my life. I was headed into a darkness that I had never experienced before or even realized existed. I showed up at the Georgia home of my parents, per my dad’s request to come help out with mom. Mom’s depression was beginning to reach a deep low. Dad was at a loss and needed reinforcement, rest, and encouragement. Mom needed love, care, and gentleness. We all needed God’s grace. Continue reading When Darkness Falls