Monday, June 30, 2008
So, as we prepare (and satan attacks us)...what issue's do you think needs to most be addressed with today's youth and how they can better communicate and live with their parents whether in a home with two parents, one parent, or stepparents?
Your thoughts and prayers are so so appreciated!!!
Friday, June 27, 2008
Wednesday, June 25, 2008
Are you passionate about anything? I have friends passionate about scrap booking and I know people who are passionate about sports. I met a very sweet friend in a round about way through the She Speaks blog named Catharine. We hooked up Thursday evening and stayed together before the conference. I would post a picture but silly me super glued a piece of trim on our camera that was loose and I guess I super glued the battery compartment door closed. My camera battery is dead and there is not a thing I can do about it. When my She Speaks friends e-mail me pictures they took with their cameras, I will post them later.
At dinner Thursday night, Catharine asked me what my husband was passionate about. I am afraid I had to think about it for a bit and in the end I felt a little ashamed that I couldn't come up with his true passion at that moment. Lets not forget, we have only been married for 3 years but....I know things he likes but whats he passionate for? Of course he would say he is passionate about me and he is but was that all? He is a passionate man for God. That is what I cherish about him the most but is that all he is passionate about?
Marybeth Whalen addressed this area again at the conference. She challenged us to live in our passion. It gives our life joy and contentment and allows us to be used more fully by God for His ministries. That is when it hit me. As I was exploring my own passion while listening to her, I thought of my husband. His passion and joy (outside of God and I) is in remodeling and fixing up houses. How many times had I heard him voice his heart at how he would like to be doing that for a living. He is so miserable at his current job managing a warehouse. He has been there just over 25 years. I have not been supportive of him leaving and risking the loss of income (we are a large blended family with teenagers-need I say more?). We have prayed over a year for God to open doors of opportunity for him to leave and there seems to be no answer..so I thought.
Now I have to ask myself the same question my husband ask me months ago, maybe a year ago- "Is He, God, asking us to step out in faith?" Have I prevented this step because of my own fear? I could argue in that we own two houses and getting finances for Joe to live in his passion is probably not possible with this current economy. Yet is that enough to keep Joe from living in his passion and living in the joy he so deserves? Marybeth stated "passion makes an eternal impact, an emotional connection, and is a life-changing break through." Joe could live that by doing what his heart longs to do. I want that for him and for me. He could also spend more time in ministry which he is so richly talented and blessed in. Two possible doors have open just in the last few weeks where it may be possible for him to step out into this dream with the resources of a partner. Though this plan is only in the works, I plan to get out of the way. I want my husband to live out his passion more fully because I love and adore him! There will be sacrifices. It will require faith.
I too have examined my passion. Catharine and Jamie boldly inquired of me to identify my own passion as we drove to the airport on Sunday. My heart is all about loving God and knowing Him more. Professionally, my heart is most content when I am caring for my patients verses teaching students how to care for them. Spirituality and nursing-that is my passion. The teaching I enjoy the most is when I coordinate and teach in the Faith Community Nurse course (parish nurses). The course trains and equips registered nurses in how to develop a ministry of nursing in their congregation (I included a picture of our last class). So God has started moving in this. Hang with me as I share what God has done in the last 48 hours...then pray for us as we move forward.
I made a decision to go part-time at the college for the 2008/2009 school year. Originally it was denied. When the new dean came to the college in February, I approached him with a part-time contract-he made it work but now I feel I have stepped out of God's will. My thoughts have been "how am I going to get out of this one?". Monday an adjunct nursing instructor (adjunct=works as needed) came to my office inquiring how I obtained the part-time contract as she is seeking this. Immediately God laid it on my heart..."here is your way out". So I will explore how we can trade contracts. Pray for me as I approach my director with this new decision.
I then opened up the employment section of a local hospital I enjoy working at to see what possibilities might be there. I have been doing this on a regular basis. An ideal situation would be for me to work the "weekend option" (working two shifts every weekend but getting paid the full-time wages of three shifts). I would not have my Sunday church ministries affected if I work Friday and Saturday and it would allow me to be free to be a wife and mother during the week. This hospital has just opened such a position on the unit I want to work plus there is a sign-on bonus!! I had an interview this morning. I have been offered the job, they will work around those things I already have scheduled this summer to make it happen. Doors are continuing to open.
I also work "as needed" through an agency and the income there alone could cover my husbands salary if I had to pick up extra shifts while he gets this potential new business up and running. Sacrifices-stepping out in faith-I will be able to continue to work in my church ministries, teach some of the courses I love at the college, the kids needs will be covered, Joe would have more time for his ministries and he will be happier in his work. Even though I couldn't ask for a more blessed marriage, Catharine, Jamie and Marybeth assures me we will be more blessed as a couple and as a family if we live in and through our passion (may I add if we live in God's will!?!?!).
It all seems to be coming together. I think. It's scary but it is time to step out in faith. To live our passion. To serve our God better. Pray God will continue to unfold His will for us in this.
Tuesday, June 24, 2008
Broken and beautiful...
Monday, June 23, 2008
Tuesday, June 17, 2008
As I have explored this concept of mind fasting, God has been planting plenty around me related just to this subject to keep me focused and to help me grow. As I posted a few blogs back, Jennifer Rothschild has written a book "Self Talk, Soul Talk" and so I picked it up and started to read it over the last couple of days. Before doing this, I had planned to post on my next blog the "truths" we find in scripture that we can live be. Well, Jennifer has done this already!! She has a blog (http://www.selftalksoultalk.com/) to go along with her book and on her blog she had the following "truths to live by". So I leave you her work to mediate on while I'm gone. I know I am taking these with me and meditating on them myself. Enjoy this and then stop by and visit Jennifer's blog!
I am forgiven. (Eph. 1:6-8)
I am gifted with power, love and a sound mind. (II Tim. 1:7)
I am chosen for success. (Jn. 15:16)
I am complete. (Col. 2:9-10)
I am secure. (Rom. 8:31-39)
I am confident. (Phil. 1:6)
I am free. (Rom. 6:18; 8:1)
I am capable. (Phil 4:13)
I am spiritually alive. (Eph. 2:5)
I am God’s workmanship. (Eph. 2:10)
I am welcome in God’s presence. (Eph. 2:18; Heb. 4:14-16)
I am sheltered and protected in God. (Col. 3:3)
I am valuable to God. (I Cor. 6:20)
I am a member of God’s family. (I Jn. 3:1-2; Eph. 2:19)
I am God’s treasure. (I Pet. 2:9-10)
I am dearly loved. (Col. 3:12)
I am being transformed. (II Cor. 3:18)
I am an heir of God. (Rom. 8:17)
I am a friend of God. (Jn. 15:15)
I am given spiritual blessings. (Eph. 1:3)
I am God’s delight. (Zeph. 3:17)
I am invited to confidently draw near to God. (Eph. 3:12)
I have these verses copied out on a word document if you want me to e-mail then to you. They are such a sweet reminder of who we are in Christ and our relationship with Him. Be blessed!! I'll comment again after I come back on the 22nd.
Monday, June 16, 2008
Thursday, June 12, 2008
2. If you are like me, there's a daily war going on with those unwanted, negative thoughts! How often do we live in the control of those unwanted thoughts? Choosing to allow the negative thoughts in gives sin power in our life!
But there is another power within me that is at war with my mind. This power makes me a slave to the sin that is still within me. ~Romans 7:3 (NLT)
3. Satan wants us to live in those sinful negative thoughts-the untruth he plants in our mind. A women who chooses to say YES to God and live in God's truth can overcome satan and these negative thoughts he plants in our mind. How?
Monday, June 9, 2008
I notice my mind has been out of focus, even in some of my quiet times. Satan is trowing all kinds of things my way. The financial is trying but more troubling is the unrest he has been putting in my heart and mind. Driving to get my girls from their grandparents the other day (2.5 hour drive one way) I focused my time in prayer and meditation. I sensed during this quiet drive that God was telling me I needed to focus my mind on Him more. So, it's "Mind Fast" time. I am fasting with my mind-staying clear of anything that would clutter it with something other than those things of God. It's not easy...turning off the TV (I miss the morning news and HGTV) and zoning out the radio except for Christian channels (knowing my teenagers will think I have gone mad. Seriously, how can I expect them not to channel hop while taking them to their destination?). I want to prepare myself , body, mind and spirit, for Him at this conference. . .
As I was writing the above paragraph getting ready to seek your prayers for a burden that had been placed on me "against" this conference, God moved mightily!! As my husband and I was conversing through e-mail this morning about how we would handle this "issue" Joe had stated "lets wait and see what God will do". BAM!! Issue resolved while I was writing this post. God has provided again!! I sat at my desk crying, humbled and awed that He could be so good...to me...the one who seeks Him daily but continues to fall short.
Our God is good, so very good!! Do pray for this event. Pray for the speakers and workers who have put this conference together. Pray for those of us attending. Pray for the ladies who are there with dreams of writing a book, for those of us who are there seeking to hear His instruction as a leader or speaker. Pray a movement will literally be heard throughout the states as hearts and minds are brought closer to Him and His eternal call specific to each of us!!
My verse for this conference...
I know your deeds. See, I have placed before you an open door that no one can shut. I know that you have little strength, yet you have kept my word and have not denied my name.
Thursday, June 5, 2008
I found that it is considered one of the most recognized patterns in the world. The twisted "tear-drop" pattern is Persian (Iranian) in origin, but its western name derives from the town of Paisley, in central Scotland, a place I hope to visit one day. In Indian culture, the paisley was originally an illiterate way for village people to communicate that it was harvest time. It is the 1009 name in popularity for use as a first name and it means "church" (loving it!)
The tear drop pattern does represent my life. But these tears have also brought rebirth and joy into my life, but only through the grace of God. It reminds me of how God can take something painful, whether of my own doing or the actions of someone else, and turn it into something beautiful. He is doing that in my life, satan is not real happy about this right now and the pressure is on...
Paisley means church-is that not what we are called to be? We are to be the church of Christ, of the same mind as God, a servant used to draw others to Him, our bodies a temple of Christ. What are you filling your church with? What gives you the energy and strength to fulfill God's plan for your life? If we are called to be of the same mind as Christ, then what feeds your mind?
For the Indian culture, paisley symbolized harvest time. Look around you. Is it not harvest time? Where is Christ in this world? How are you showing Him to all those around you that do not know Him? What is your field of harvest? Your family? Your work? Your faith community?