I Blog Because...

I am a wife, a mom, a servant, a seeker and a follower of Christ. I am blogging to chronicle my own journey with God with the hope to inspire others to deepen their relationship with Him. Perhaps my mistakes and blunders will make you chuckle. Or, maybe, my disappointments, mistakes and learnings will speak to your heart. I often write at night, so forgive the grammatical mistakes and misspellings. This is a place for me to empty my mind and thoughts, with the hope of one day blessing my 2 girls with the raw honesty about life from their mom. I invite you to journey with me and share in my joys and sorrows as I seek to know my Lord. Proverbs 8:17 "I love those who love me, and those who seek me find me."

Blog Archive



Friday, October 29, 2010

"Operation Love Thy Neighbor"

I delivered cupcakes (originally planned to deliver freshly baked brownies…don’t even ask what happened there!) to 3 neighbors today and included invites to Trunk or Treat. Sounds easy for an extrovert, right?

I found this definition of extrovert: “(1) outgoing person: somebody who is sociable and self-confident; (2) somebody with interest outside self: somebody whose interests are directed outside the self.” The first part of the definition comes most easily.

The knock-knock/big smile/hand off of cupcakes came very easily for me. It only took about 5 minutes to do this. Now what about tomorrow? What about the follow up and the relational investment? That’s the cannonball jump for me. I am planning to have hot cider available on Sunday night as the neighbors head out for trick or treating.   However nice that may seem, the cupcakes and cider are not enough. In fact, that's the easy part. Impact begins when we notice and see the people Jesus misses the most.  Impact happens when we share time together…face to face.      Impact happens when our interests are directed outside of the self.   Impact happens if we stop long enough to connect with another person and genuinely care

It's time to jump into the lives of people, far beyond a wave and smile.

So I ask myself again...is that just a costume you're wearing? 

Monday, October 25, 2010

Is that just a costume you're wearing?


Daily Devotions – Monday 10/25

.Making a Splash
Read Mark 9:33-35

A summer day + a few friends + a diving board = splash contest! The desire to make the biggest splash leads us to jump higher, lean farther, land harder and perfect the supreme cannonball. The same desire to make the biggest splash—to “be the greatest”—can happen in our lives. Notice how Jesus responds to the disciples’ discussion. Jesus does not condemn their desire, but redefines what it means to be great.

What is your strategy for making an impact in the world? How would you feel talking about your plans with Jesus? Spend a minute in prayer talking with God about how he can use you to pursue true greatness.


Wow, I've spent some time this afternoon contemplating this one.   I think this may be part of the strategy God is calling me to follow:

Micah 6:8 (NIrV)

8 The Lord has shown you what is good.

He has told you what he requires of you.

You must treat people fairly.

You must love others faithfully.

And you must be very careful to live

the way your God wants you to. (humbly)

My prayer is that God would be teach me how to live in humble submission to His will for my life each day and that I would make the most of every opportunity. There are days when I realize I'm just fooling myself into thinking I've accomplished God's will for the day simply because it may fall under the umbrella of good ministry work.   Accolades can be poisonous if they lead us to the place where we realize we are trying to please man and not God.  
I also recognize that the impact I make is limited to the point that I allow God to impact my own life.    Impact happens when I allow God's will and desires for me to come crashing into the deepest place of my soul.  When I am aligned with that, only then can I respond with action to make an impact.
I proudly wore my Cannonball Tshirt yesterday which says, "Cannonball...all in and making waves."   I have on my cannonball bracelet today.   In the quiet, this question came to my mind:   Is that just a costume you're wearing, or do you really intend to live this out?  Are you gonna jump?
While I feel fairly confident of the answer, I dare not respond so hastily.   I want to wrestle with this one for awhile.    
I am thankful for the journey.  Although not an easy one, I am grateful for His presence.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Speechless, wordless and in awe of God

Led to Isaiah 43 tonight.

"Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine. 2 When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you.

When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze. 3 For I am the LORD your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior; I give Egypt for your ransom, Cush [a] and Seba in your stead.
4 Since you are precious and honored in my sight, and because I love you,
I will give nations in exchange for you, and peoples in exchange for your life.
5 Do not be afraid, for I am with you;

"Forget about what's happened; don't keep going over old history. Be alert, be present. I'm about to do something brand-new. It's bursting out! Don't you see it?  There it is! I'm making a road through the desert, rivers in the badlands."  Isaiah 43:18-19 (The Message) 

"Climb the ladder and walk to the edge of the board.  Don't look down, but look way out ahead and then jump!  Can you see me?  I'm already waiting for you in the pool and I've been here all along.  You're ready.  Now jump!"  (My message)

When one truly experiences God, words are inadequate.   I am left speechless, wordless and in awe of God in these moments.   Absolutely, positively speechless.   

I will conclude my writing with this:   He knows me, He finds me worthy of His love, His is not silent and He is most assuredly at work in my life.

I am closing my eyes and entering into rest as the journey continues.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Day 1 Debrief - Home from my mission trip. Now what?


Time to lean into feelings, thoughts and next steps with God.  This is a scary and uncomfortable place for me.  I have been overwhelmed by the silence in my home today.  This is such a change from all that I experienced over the past 9 days in the Dominican Republic.  I miss the sounds of animals and motorcycles.  I miss the merengue and bachata music blaring from the bar down the road.  I miss the voices of my Dominican friends.   I miss the people I have grown to love, serve with and pray with.  I miss the church and worshipping with my brothers and sisters. "Cantaré de tu amor, Rendiré mi corazón ante ti, Tú serás me pasión, Y mis pasos se guiarán por tu voz.  Mi Jesús y mi Rey, De tu gran amor cantaré."

It grows increasingly more difficult for me to leave and separate myself from my Dominican brothers and sisters.  Monte Cristi feels like home.  La iglesia feels like my church home.  There were many moments when I felt that all that was missing was my husband and kids.  While in Monte Cristi, I felt as though I had everything else I could ever want or need. I felt wholly and completely in the center of God's will.   God has placed an incredible love and burden in my heart for these people. I thank God for this, but at the same time, I grapple with what it is that God expects me to do with this love and burden.   Have you ever been desperate to hear from God?   Have you ever asked Him the same questions over and over again?  Have you cried out vocally, in desperation?  Have you fallen to your knees and begged for God to speak?  Have you approached God without words and only offered sobs and moans?  Has He ever been silent?   Have you ever been there?  That's where I find myself, in a season of seeking but receiving silence. 

I suppose when God is silent, it is a reminder to us that He is sovereign and we are not. That He will speak when, and where, and how, AND when He full well pleases, and not just when we demand it.  His silence reminds us of His reality. You and I don't miss things that are not real. You and I don't long for unicorns (at least I hope we don't). When God is silent, it is so painful because we so badly need the reality of His presence in our lives and we need Him to speak to us.  That pain is a reminder of God's reality, I guess.

Today is painful, emotional and difficult.   I wonder if God is silent or if I am simply unable to hear His voice.    Has God already revealed His will and spoken?  Am I expecting far too much information and details from God?    There are times when I think I have discerned God's will for my life but I become paralyzed with fear of the unknown. I feel inadequate for such lofty goals and vision.   What if God is waiting on me to move?     During my prayer time today, with fear and trembling, I made a covenant before God to passionately invest my life in obeying Him and reaching the world no matter what role He has for me.   I will continue to cry out to the Lord:  "Speak Lord, for your servant is listening."Jeremiah 29:11 "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."

Thank you, God.  Thank you.  

I am settling into this silence, waiting and listening for His still, small voice.   I will praise my Savior and sing of His love.

Monday, March 29, 2010

My Chronicles of the Grand Beginning

March 28, 2010, The Grand Beginning of Mountain Christian Church - Bel Air.

12:01 - Wide awake. Full of excitement and wonder about the day ahead. I try to envision the people we will meet in the morning. What are their lives like? Are they feeling anxious? Will this be their very first time in a church? I pray and thank God for all the people who will be setting their alarm clocks for the first time, or, for the first time in a very long time for church. I pray for a little boy named Ranon who may show up tomorrow with his grandfather. "Lord, let this little boy come to you, and let nothing hinder his way."

The middle of the night - ZZZZzzzzz for awhile. Slept in heavenly peace for a time. I am so excited, that I cannot stay asleep. I awaken and check the clock. I am so worried that I will oversleep or that the alarm clock will malfunction. It's around 3 a.m. and all is still and quiet. There truly is peace in the dark, quiet still of the night when you know that God is with you. There is a sense that the only 2 beings in the world right now are me and God. I tell God my fears, my hopes, my insecurities of self, and ask Him to work through me. I pray for our volunteer leaders and their teams. I am so thankful to God for all that He has done. I realize once again this truth: I AM and I am not. The great I AM is holding everything together. The great I AM is our provider for every need. The great I AM is stirring the hearts of those in the Bel Air community to come. I am simply a willing vessel to be used by God. He is the great I AM and I am not. Praise the Lord!

Back to sleep for a time: ZZZZzzzzz until 4:30 a.m. The alarms sounds. It's time. It's here. The day has finally come! I pray and ramble about a million petitions to God. I pray about there being enough goldfish crackers to someone accepting Christ!

4:45 a.m.: Time to pull out that new outfit my husband let me purchase. I really wanted to make an "I love woodchucks" T-shirt, but it just didn't happen. I hop in the shower and get ready for the day. I feel saturated with the Spirit and it is amazing. I notice God in everything, from the light in the bathroom to the shower water. It's crazy, but I am finding a praise and prayer in every moment. You are the light of the world, whoever follows you will never walk in darkness but will have the light of life. Taste the Living Water, and never thirst again. I pray this over the campus and the town of Bel Air. I drive in to John Carroll at 6:15 and as I see a glimpse of the morning breaking through the night sky, I cry. I am overwhelmed by my God. I thank Him over and over again for using me. I think back to my own transformation and I can't believe what God has done for me. I can't believe what I a doing with and for God now. "You have laid your hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too lofty, for me to attain." Psalm 139:5 The 8 minute drive produced a personal psalm of praise.

JCS: Everyone is moving full speed ahead. We unload my mini-van, the trucks and cases are rolled into place. Our children's ministry team prays together in the cafeteria and then we begin the set up process. There is so much excitement in the air, it is almost palpable. We are a team with a mission to welcome a new community of young and old to meet Jesus.

I am praying for our leaders to arrive safely and on time. Everything is coming together beautifully. I am so proud to be a part of this staff and volunteer team.

Approx 8:45: Our entire team of staff and volunteers circled up in the hallway and we bathed the morning in prayer. It was a powerful and moving experience. It has happened, just as God had preordained. I, along with many others, are moved to tears.

Get ready, get set, GO: OPEN THE DOORS! People begin arriving. Some faces I recognize and many I do not. "Lord, let them see you. Let them see you." It is a short and simple prayer, but I was praying from the very depths of my soul. I met two apprehensive moms who needed some reassurance that their kids would be safe and in good hands. What an honor to meet them, comfort them, and talk with them. One mom said that it had been a very long time since she attended church, and she thought she'd give us a try. After service she shared how much she enjoyed the service and she plans on bringing her husband next week. I think the highlight of my day was meeting Ranon! This was the little boy I had been praying for all week. There he was, hair combed neatly and parted to the side, dressed in a suit jacket and plaid shirt and black dress shoes. He is 4 years old. I told him that a special friend of mine met his grandparents at the grocery store and told them about our church. I told him I was praying that he would be here today and that God answered my prayer. He smiled and then proceeded to tell me he knows how to spell his last name and then waived the palm branch he made today. Oh, I just love kids! It was the most beautiful encounter I have had in a long time. I believe this was my special gift today from God and I received it with open arms. I know Jesus will speak to this sweet, little spirit He created.

I take a visit to the Nursery/Toddler area and I see my daughters serving. Natalie is caring for Asher, our worship pastor's son in the toddler room. She is amazing with this little boy. She is the only person Asher wants to be with today and she is blessed by this. She smiles as she shares with another nursery worker, "he only wants me!" I love it! My daughter is now a children's minister and I am so proud of her. My oldest daughter is running tech for preschool and serving with our 2 year olds. Over in the Elementary area my husband is leading tech and training a highschool boy for ministry in this area. My 72 year old mother is holding babies and comforting them in the nursery. Again, I am overwhelmed by God's goodness.

I stopped into the worship auditorium and we began to sing "Salvation is Here." I sang out the words to that song with everything I had to give. "I know my God saved the day and I know his word never fails, and I know my God made a way for me. Salvation is here! Salvation is here and He lives in me." Have you ever experienced the power of the Holy Spirit as you proclaim who Jesus is, and that He is alive in you? There are no words to describe this. All I know is that my God is doing something in the hearts of the people here today and He IS alive in me. Our executive pastor shares a story with me about an elderly woman in a pink coat who was worshipping a few feet away from me. She was recently widowed and came to church today because we were in walking distance for her. He reminded me this is why we are here and I am again overwhelmed to be a part of God's amazing plan and part of the great commission.

Our elementary ministry team is rocking out with the kids singing, "Jesus, you are my best friend." I can't help myself as I jump into the crowd of kids begin singing and doing the crazy motions to the song. And, if you know me, I was definitely getting a little crazy! The message of the day is simple for those kids: "You are welcome here just the way you are. We've been waiting for you. Have fun, make friends and get to know Jesus! He wants to be your best friend."

There are simply no words to describe this day. So I say, Holy is the Lord, God almighty, the earth is filled with this glory. Thank you God for using me to further Your Kingdom. "For Your mercy in my life, when I deserve to die, you took my place. For cleansing every part of the places in my heart, where there was shame, there are no words to say thank you for all You've done. I praise You, Jesus. I love You, Jesus.

Today was the grand beginning of someone's walk with Jesus. To God be the glory! Sunday comes again this week...thank you Jesus.

He said to me: "It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To him who is thirsty I will give to drink without cost from the spring of the water of life. Revelation 21:6

Friday, March 5, 2010

Look Through the Window with 20/20 Vision

What do you see when you look out your window? 

I am captivated by the silvery sky and a large oak tree which is positioned off in the distance.  Its branches are bare and from my view it appears mammoth in size and canvasses the sky line.   It is almost completely dark outside but for the patch of sky which is ever so slightly giving light to the tree.  The tree, its trunk and many branches appear black against the fast approaching night sky.    Just in the moments spent typing this paragraph, I see the night descending and the daylight fading.   This happens day after day, without fail and I rarely stop to take notice.  This is amazing.  God is doing something right before my very eyes and it is amazing.

I asked my almost 13 year old daughter to look out of the same window and to tell me what she sees.  She replied by saying, "I see the sky, a tree that's blocking my view, dirty snow, some houses and cars."     Interesting observations and 100% correct.

Lately, I have been asking God to show me more and to expand my vision.  Yeah, maybe there is a big tree blocking me but how do I get around it?   Can I see beyond it?  If I can't move it, can it serve a purpose.  Can I envision what it could be?   Why is it there?  Is there something I can learn from this obstruction?  Is it really an obstacle at all, or is it something beautiful?

What does the world look like through Jesus' eyes.  What if we put on our son glasses and dared to ask God to give us 20/20 vision.    What would you see if you looked outside and beyond yourself?    Be thou my vision. 

Personal introspection and examination reveals to me that I am plagued with myopia.  I can see what is near and close to me but fail to see what is far in the distance.   I am asking God to give me His eyes and His vision.     One of my favorite contemporary Christian songs is by Brandon Heath and entitled "Give Me Your Eyes"    I am sharing the lyrics below and hope that you will join me as I make this my prayer to our great God.

Look down from a broken sky

Traced out by the city lights
My world from a mile high
Best seat in the house tonight
Touch down on the cold black top
Hold on for the sudden stop
Breath in the familiar shock
Of confusion and chaos
All those people going somewhere
Why have I never cared

Give me your eyes for just one second
Give me your eyes so I can see
Everything that I keep missing
Give me your love for humanity
Give me your arms for the broken hearted
The ones that are far beyond my reach
Give me you heart for the ones forgotten
Give me your eyes so I can see

Yeah Yeah Yeah Yeah

Step out on a busy street
See a girl and our eyes meet
Does her best to smile at me
To hide what’s underneath
There's a man just to her right
Black suit and a bright red tie
Too ashamed to tell his wife
He's out of work, He's buying time

I’ve been here a million times
A couple of million eyes
Just move and pass me by
I swear I never thought that I was wrong
I need a second glance
Give me a second chance
To see the way you’ve seen the people all along


Friday, February 19, 2010

From Garden to City

From Garden to City

There are a lot of Bible reading plans out there. I wanted to share with you a plan I started on Ash Wednesday. There is online reading as well as a daily blog site. Stay connected to The Vine ~ Jenny

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Light of the world, you step down into darkness. Opened my eyes, let me see

Darkness was overshadowed today by the light. I entered a dimly lit chapel this morning to meet with God and journey through an Ash Wednesday experience. I made the walk up the hill to the chapel from my office with the full expectation to meet with God. I opened my Bible to Psalm 139 and lingered at verse 23. I asked God to search me, test me and lead me. Whenever I ask such things of God, He doesn't disappoint. I don't think I was fully prepared for all that the Holy Spirit had planned for me. You see, I asked God to search ME, and test ME and lead ME. If often hide ME from God. I approach the throne of grace as a wife, a mother or a children's minister, but I withhold the real me from God. I too often allow the seasons of my life to dictate and define who God is in my life. He is mine and I am His -- all of the time. He is interested in the condition of my heart and soul. He is interested in my confession and repentance so that my life may bring glory to God. Earlier in the same Psalm it states that God formed me, He searched me and He knows ME. He knows my every thought and my every sin. Nothing is hidden from Him. "Even the darkness will not be dark to you. The night will shine like the day for darkness is as light to you." The light did shine upon my darkness today. I presented ME to the Lord today, all of me. My soul cried out to God as I named sin in my life and asked for forgiveness. Tears flowed and streamed down my face in the darkness. It has been too long since I have opened my sin stained self up before God. The Light of the World, opened my eyes and let me see what needs pruning in my life. I didn't want to leave this precious time with my Lord. His presence was strong and almost palpable. I moved from uncomfortable to comforted. I marked myself with ashes in the form of a cross on my wrist. I am a sinner, but not a slave to sin. Death is at work but so is life. 2 Corinthians 4:10-12 "We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body. For we who are alive are always being given over to death for Jesus' sake, so that his life may be revealed in our mortal body. So then, death is at work in us, but life is at work in you." So I say, "thank you Jesus." I am again overwhelmed when I consider His love for me. His love is for me. For me. Me.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Serve Him + Know Him = Joy

I was struck by these verses in Ephesians...

Ephesians 3:7-9 (The Message)

7-8"This is my life work: helping people understand and respond to this Message. It came as a sheer gift to me, a real surprise, God handling all the details. When it came to presenting the Message to people who had no background in God's way, I was the least qualified of any of the available Christians. God saw to it that I was equipped, but you can be sure that it had nothing to do with my natural abilities.

8-10 And so here I am, preaching and writing about things that are way over my head, the inexhaustible riches and generosity of Christ. My task is to bring out in the open and make plain what God, who created all this in the first place, has been doing in secret and behind the scenes all along. Through followers of Jesus like yourselves gathered in churches, this extraordinary plan of God is becoming known and talked about even among the angels!"

I was struck by Paul's gratitude. He considered it an absolute privilege to be given the responsibility of ministry (and keep in mind he was in jail as he wrote). I can imagine Paul saying, "Can you believe I get to do this?!? How lucky am I!?!"

It makes me think about how often those of us in vocational ministry lose sight of the joy of our calling. I know we all go through hard times at work, but if we feel "burdened" or "put out" by our responsibilities then perhaps we've allowed joy to be stolen from us. Maybe we've forgotten what a privilege this is.  Or, maybe, we've connected ourselves so closely to the tasks of ministry that we've forgotten to connect ourselves closely to the Vine.

I often say to our volunteers, "we can't give away what we don't possess." If our spiritual gauge is on empty, we can't deposit life-giving fuel into others.

Perhaps the secret to longevity and joy in ministry hinges upon this:

John 15
The Vine and the Branches

1-3 "I am the Real Vine and my Father is the Farmer. He cuts off every branch of me that doesn't bear grapes. And every branch that is grape-bearing he prunes back so it will bear even more. You are already pruned back by the message I have spoken.

4"Live in me. Make your home in me just as I do in you. In the same way that a branch can't bear grapes by itself but only by being joined to the vine, you can't bear fruit unless you are joined with me.

5-8"I am the Vine, you are the branches. When you're joined with me and I with you, the relation intimate and organic, the harvest is sure to be abundant. Separated, you can't produce a thing. Anyone who separates from me is deadwood, gathered up and thrown on the bonfire. But if you make yourselves at home with me and my words are at home in you, you can be sure that whatever you ask will be listened to and acted upon. This is how my Father shows who he is—when you produce grapes, when you mature as my disciples.

9-10"I've loved you the way my Father has loved me. Make yourselves at home in my love. If you keep my commands, you'll remain intimately at home in my love. That's what I've done—kept my Father's commands and made myself at home in his love.

11-15"I've told you these things for a purpose: that my joy might be your joy, and your joy wholly mature."

I am grateful to our God for the privilege to serve Him.    Above all else, the true privilege is to seek God and know Him more each day.

It's Sunday night and it is time for some sweet Sabbath time.   "Lord, I'm coming to connect with you.  Fill me, renew me and continue to use me, I pray."

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Are You Ready for a Revolution?

I am relaxing this evening with the family and our family pet, Spice (the most adorable cockapoo to grace the earth).    Snow is falling and all the world seems quiet from my vantage point.  Ahhhh...

I am beginning a new book tonight entitled, "The Compassion Revolution" by Dave Donaldson.   Chapter 1 - "Imagine for a moment that you are relaxing at home and the phone rings.  When you answer, you hear a friend's breathless voice:  'Are you watching the news?  Have you heard what has happened?  It's horrible!'  During this one day, 30 jumbo jets have crashed, killing a total of 5,700 people.   Don't you think the whole world would be shocked and in mourning at the announcement of this awful event?    Of course this didn't happen --these 30 jets didn't crash.  But the children who died today simply because they lack clean, safe water would fill all of these planes."

rev⋅o⋅lu⋅tion⋅ar⋅y  [rev-uh-loo-shuh-ner-ee] - a drastic and far-reaching change in thinking and behavior.

In Luke 6:36, Jesus instructs his followers, "Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful."    The challenge is not to merely feel merciful, but to BE merciful.     The needs of this world are so great.  Hunger, homelessness, sickness, poverty...can we really make a difference?    When the disciples posed this same question to Jesus he said, "I tell you the truth, anyone who has faith in me will do what I have been doing.   He will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father."  John 14:12

I am looking forward to reading this book, meditating on the scriptures and reacting with Christ-like compassion.

Let's join the compassion revolution!

Monday, February 8, 2010

Ye, Myself and I

Snow plow? No plow as of 11:08 p.m. this Sunday night! At the moment, I am completely fine with the lack of attention from the State Highway Administration. Once the wall of snow is penetrated and shoved aside, I know that the world will move full speed ahead. It will be time to jump back inside of the giant hamster wheel and start running the race all over again. Do you ever feel like that? Maybe you feel like you're being chased by an avalanche or giant cartoon snowball. As I sit in silence, encased in a protective wall of white, I again recognize my need to be still. Why is that so difficult to do for some of us? Shouldn't I be doing something to try to get a little ahead? March is coming, Easter is coming. Move, move, move my inner being cries out!

Thankfully, the deepest part of my inner being is crying out and has a louder voice. I have allowed some time for examination before God and believe I have an answer for myself. You can call me, "ye of little faith" or you can call me "Ye" for short. Humiliating or humbling? I admit it to be both, but fortunately there is learning from this title. Faith is the very basis and foundation of my relationship with Jesus and yet it can be one of the most difficult things I wrestle with. I believe that Jesus is the Son of God, that He died and 3 days later rose from the dead, that He can heal the sick, transform lives, and even move mountains. I struggle with why I fail to have the faith to see how God will meet the needs of every day life. The unexpected expenses that creep in, job stresses, family matters, money stress, feelings of inadequacy, health issues or sickness.

And yet, how many stories are there in the Gospels of healings that happened just because an individual, simply in a child-like fashion, knew and believed that Jesus could heal the person they were concerned about? I can memorize scripture and attend Bible studies about these miracles, but if I don't have child-like faith, it means nothing in my own life.

I have some needs right now. I could make a list, a long list. I have forgotten that all I need is my faith in God. All I need is God. "Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see." There is a certain simplicity to faith. Simply believe. God didn't have to, but he has shown His credentials. He is faithful and He has shown us this through the ages. Manna from the sky and water from a rock. Lazarus raised from the dead, the parting of the Red Sea, feeding 5,000, calming the storm and creating the entire world...what more do I need!!?? I don’t see dead birds or other animals lying around in the snow as a result of the storm. God provided for their every need. Need after need has been met over and over again. The almighty God has shown Himself strong! And yet, I have to call myself "Ye" from time to time.

I am spending tomorrow in solitude in silence, realizing that I can, because God is in control of all things. Not me. He’ll get along without me just fine. I will meet with the One who is able to do immeasurably more than I could ask or imagine. I plan to show up with "Ye, myself and I" and be renewed from the inside out. God, I'm here to meet with you, come and meet with me.    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FMb3xBsGiZU

Friday, February 5, 2010

I'd Stop the World and Melt with You

Well, it is 1:10 a.m. and I am unable to sleep. The anticipation is great! A big event is imminent and there is a rush and flurry of activity. Preparations are in place and people are keenly aware of their needs and living essentials. Phone calls are being made to friends, neighbors and family members ensuring that have heard the latest news. It is important that they are prepared for what lies ahead. My friends, we are talking about the snow forecast for our Maryland area. Yes, we are expected to receive up to 2 feet of snow or more in the Baltimore area through Saturday evening.

S N O W- (snō), noun

1. Particles of water vapor which when frozen in the upper air fall to earth as soft, white, crystalline flakes

It sounds heavenly, yet this water vapor which falls to the earth as soft, white flakes evoke fear, panic, and frustration for many folks. Are we really surprised by snow in the winter? It certainly is plausible for January and February. Someone taught us that snow is an anticipated part of the winter season. Yet, we seem ill prepared for the crystalline flakes when they are forecasted. We think about everything we need; the essentials. We prepare and plan. We make a mad dash to the store for milk, bread, and toilet paper. We even think about others' needs. Something is coming and we'd better move fast, with a sense of urgency. What if we are trapped in our homes for a few days? What if our plans have to change or are cancelled? What if we can't get to work? We run around like Chicken Little...the snow is falling, the snow is falling!

And, of course, there are others who eagerly await the snow. They gaze upon its beauty and consider the wonder of God's beautiful creation. Every flake quietly falls from the sky and blankets the world in pure white. All seems still, quiet and at perfect peace. For a time, there is tranquility and the only focus is upon the One who created each icy, glistening particle. The One who created the heavens and the earth. The One who beckons and calls us to slow down our pace. Peace, be still. He calls to us and says, "Come to me, all who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest."  Oh gentle Savior, to look upon your face and consider the wonders you have done.

Where do you find yourself? Are in you in the "snow camp" or the "slow camp" at the moment? I have to admit I've been living out the past few days in the "snow camp" club.

In these moments of quiet, alone in my living room, I realize my desire for some slow and silent moments with God. Blanket me with your presence O God, and make me white as snow. No rush, just slow and steady moments with you, steeping in your Word.

I'd stop the world and melt with you. Let it snow and may I be blessed with no place to go but into the arms of my Savior.

~Sleep in heavenly peace~

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

The Wheels on the Church Go Round and Round, all through the town

The Wheels on the Church Go Round and Round...

I can't believe it has been several months since I took the time to update my blog and empty my head. Where to begin?

This has been a time of transition. A time of change, growth, adjustment, acceptance, grief, wonder, excitement, joy, uncertainty, expectancy, and prayer.

Ecclesiastes 3 A Time for Everything

"There is a time for everything and a season for every activity under heaven: a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot, a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build, a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance, a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them, a time to embrace and a time to refrain, a time to search and a time to give up, a time to keep and a time to throw away, a time to tear and a time to mend, a time to be silent and a time to speak, a time to love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace."

There is indeed a season for every activity under heaven. God has set apart this time and season in my life to follow hard after Him. In order to follow someone, you need stay close and never lose sight of where your leader is leading you. You listen closely for your leader's direction. You keep your eyes on the leader, otherwise, you can end up lost and going your own way.

God is on the move! He is depositing a bunch of his followers smack in the middle of Bel Air to begin a new worship site at the John Carroll School. Why? To reach the people Jesus misses the most. Mountain Christian Church is going multi-site and will be holding worship services at John Carroll on March 21st. The wheels on the church go round and round...literally. This is a "God-sized" mission which simply confirms what I already know: "Apart from Him, I can do nothing" coupled with a healthy dose of "I can do all things through Him who strengthens me." I will be leading Children's Ministry at the new site and will be part of an amazing team which God has hand picked for such a time as this.

I am learning a lot of about my Savior as He moves Mountain. I am learning what it means to completely surrender to Him, to listen for His voice, to seek Him first and then all else will be given. I need my Savior moment by moment as we embark upon this amazing new thing. God's new thing. I repeatedly stand in awe of what He is doing and that He is using a wretch like me.

When I think about the kids and families that can meet Jesus through our new site, I can scarce take it in. Life after life will be transformed. When lives are changed through Jesus Christ, people notice. Neighbors take notice. Kids at school take notice. Family members take notice.

There is much to pray about. I am reading one of Bill Hybels' books, Too Busy Not to Pray and am reminded of my need to be in constant communion with God.

God's got wheels...and I am chasing hard after Him. Follow along with me, for it sure to be a wild ride!

Proverbs 16:3 "Commit to the LORD whatever you do, and your plans will succeed."