Monday, November 30, 2009

My Soul This Morning

A couple of things touched my soul this morning.

My Utmost for His Highest:
The way we continually talk about our own inability is an insult to the Creator. The deploring of our own incompetence is a slander against God for having overlooked us. Get into the habit of examining in the sight of God the things that sound humble before men, and you will be amazed at how staggeringly impertinent they are. "Oh, I shouldn't like to say I am sanctified; I'm not a saint." Say that before God; and it means - "No, Lord, it is impossible for You to save and sanctify me; there are chances I have not had; so many imperfections in my brain and body; no, Lord, it isn't possible." That may sound wonderfully humble before men, but before God it is an attitude of defiance.
Again, the things that sound humble before God may sound the opposite before men. To say thank God, I know I am saved and sanctified, is in the sight of God the acme of humility, it means you have so completely abandoned yourself to God that you know He is true. Never bother your head as to whether what you say sounds humble before men or not, but always be humble before God, and let Him be all in all. There is only one relationship that matters, and that is your personal relationship to a personal Redeemer and Lord. Let everything else go, but maintain that at all costs, and God will fulfill His purposes, and yours may be that life.
And from Spurgeon:
In the presence of a great work or a great warfare, here is a text which should help us to buckle on our harness. If Jehovah Himself goes before us, it must be safe to follow. Who can obstruct our progress if the Lord Himself is in the van? Come, brother soldiers, let us make a prompt advance! Why do we hesitate to pass on to victory?
Nor is the Lord before us only; He is with us. Above, beneath, around, within is the omnipotent, omnipresent One. In all time, even to eternity, He will be with us even as He has been. How this should nerve our arm. Dash at it boldy, ye soldiers of the cross, for the Lord of hosts is with us!
Being before us and with us, He will never withdraw His help. He cannot fail in himself and He will not fail toward us. He will continue to help us according to our need, even to the end. As He cannot fail us, so He will not forsake us. He will always be both able and willing to grant us strength and succor till fighting days are gone.
Let us not fear nor be dismayed; for the Lord of hosts will go down to the battle with us, will bear the brunt of the fight, and give us the victory.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Beautiful Lily

Tonight I got to tuck sweet Lily Margaret into bed. We prayed together and then she told me that she couldn't close her eyes. :) So I sat with her and rubbed her hair as she closed her eyes. It was very sweet. As I sat there looking at her sweet face my heart was falling more in love with this sweet little one. I started asking God to protect her and that she would know her worth in Him. That she would know and believe with confidence that God has made her and designed her beautifully and uniquely. That she would continue to shine with beauty. That she would not doubt her significance and worth and her beauty, and that it is only because of Jesus.
She is SO beautiful. I'm thankful for her sweet little heart.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Flaws & Fat. Just Bein' Real.

So I'm gonna be real honest here.
I've been battling something today. It's something that I battle with OFTEN. Too often. I've seen the ways that Lord has released freedom in my life regarding this and I've also seen the ways satan grabs hold of it and shakes things up.

Today seems to be a day when satan is shaking things up.

BUT I'm reminded today by a good friend of mine, she texted me this:
"Oh how satan loves to try to rob us of our joy and praise around this time of year! But thanks be to God who has overcome and all glory and praise is due to him!!"

It happens stronger when I'm about to go home to Iowa, when I haven't been back in awhile. The last time I was back was last January.
Since January, I have probably gained 20-30lbs...I don't even know for sure cause I've forced myself to stop getting on the scale. I just know that it's a lot.
I've had a lot of weird health things going on and I stopped exercising. And to be honest...I love food. It has just gotten a little out of control.
Anyway...I battle with the way I look. I battle with every time I look in the mirror I see flaws and fat. I battle with coming home and not having been home in awhile, seeing people I haven't seen in awhile...wondering if they will think I'm fat.
It's silly.
I know.
But it's a battle. I struggle.

Last night I had a photo shoot with a friend who needed a model for her class. As I drove there I kept praying, "Lord, give me Your eyes to see me as You see me." I had some sweet friends pray for me too. The night was fun and didn't think about it...much.
My friend emailed me some of the pictures today, and I've been battling all day. She did an amazing job...but when I look at them I see flaws and fat.
WHY!? Why do I do this to myself? I've been asking the Lord today to change my heart and to change my eyes.

I'm choosing to claim the promises that God says. I'm choosing to believe them until the Lord changes my heart, and He will. He will mold me and remold me until my heart is like His. That's a big process.

My sweet friend that texted me earlier also sent me this from "31 Days of Praise" by Ruth Myers. I will read it over and over and over and over:
I give thanks to You, O Lord, and I stand in awe of You, for I am wonderfully made. Marvelous are your works! Thank You that You uniquely designed and created me, with the same care and precision You used in creating the universe...that You formed me in love exactly to Your specifications...that You embroidered me with great skill in my mother's womb.
I'm grateful that my looks, abilities, and my personality are like a special picture frame in which You can portray Your grace and beauty, Your love, Your strength, Your faithfulness, to the praise of Your glory. I rejoice that You have gifted me for the special purpose You have in mind for my life.
It's wonderful to know that you are not the least bit dissatisfied with my inborn talents, intelligence, aptitudes, appearance, and personality, for Your hands have made and fashioned me. I am one of Your original masterpieces! I praise You that You are greater than all my failures...that as my Potter, You are able to mold and remold me, as I submit to Your wisdom and skill...that as the Master Artist You are able to take away my sin and through Christ make me a new creation in Christ Jesus to the praise of Your glorious grace.
I worship and bow down; I kneel before You, my Maker.
So I write all of this, just to be real. I struggle. I deal with junk. This is just a small part of the junk. There are MANY women and men who struggle with this. Just thought I would share my part of the battle.
God has won the victory, I have to daily surrender and ask Him to take control. I have no control over much as I try and try. I have NO control. But He does. I have to release it to Him.
That's Recovery people!
So that's me today. Being raw and real.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Jen's Post

Read Jen's post about what is happening in 2 days.

2 days!

2 days I can't wait!

So today I have two doctors appointments. a Photo Shoot. Laundry.
Tomorrow I have one doctor appointment, packing, then Jen is coming over to spend the night cause our flight leaves at 6:20am Wed. morning. Thats ridiculous.
Then Wednesday is the day! YEAH!!!
We decided we are documenting our trip with lots of video and commentary. It's gonna be awesome.
I hope these 2 days go fast, and then I hope the rest of the week is really long.
The high temps in Iowa right now are in the 40's. AND it's supposed to snow on Thursday. whatintheworld. I'm going to freeze. I'm a complete wimp now that I have been in TX for 3 years.

Laura told me today that Noah asked if Jen was bringing her kids with her. Laura told him that Jen was like me...a single girl and not married yet. His response was..."Well...what are they waiting for?!" She tried to explain to him that we were waiting for the right guy to come along!
I was kinda thinking in my head, "I know right!? c'mon guys!"
Noah. He is funny.

Jill told me today that Will wondered if this visit was another surprise for grandma! Some of you may remember THIS from last year. Oh man. That was great. But no surprises this year!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Let This Change Your Life

This blog post should change your life somehow.
How will you let it?
I'm battling so much after reading this.
God, what do you want me to do? I can't do it. I don't know what to do. But YOU can and YOU do know what to do. Use me somehow.

Monday, November 16, 2009

9 Days!

9 days until I get to be in Iowa. I can't wait. It's going to be SO much fun.
My friend Jen is coming with me. I'm not sure if she's ready yet for what she will experience. She told me today that she needs to start mentally preparing herself.
I have envisioned getting off the plane, coming down the escalator, seeing my family waiting and then they all run to Jen. :)
I'm going to completely play my "baby of the family" card right now and say that I have a feeling I'm not going to get all the attention when I'm back. :( boo.
It's gonna be legendary.

Friday, November 13, 2009

The Inner Voice of Love

I read this on Jen's blog awhile ago and have been reading it again over and over this week. SO good.

"You are very concerned with making the right choices about your work. You have so many options that you are constantly overwhelmed by the question "What should I do and what should I not do?" You are asked to respond to many concrete needs. There are people to visit, people to receive, people to simply be with. There are issues that beg for attention, books it seems important to read, and works of art to be seen. But what of all this truly deserves your time?

Start by by not allowing these people and issues to possess you. As long as you think that you need them to be yourself, you are not really free. Much of their urgency comes from your own need to be accepted and affirmed. You have to keep going back to the source: God's love for you.

In many ways, you still want to set your own agenda. You act as if you have to choose among many things, which all seem equally important. But you have not fully surrendered yourself to God's guidance. You keep fighting with God over who is in control.

Try to give your agenda to God. Keep saying, "Your will be done, not mine." Give every part of your heart and your time to God and let God tell you what to do, where to go, when and how to respond. God does not want you to destroy yourself. Exhaustion, burnout, and depression are not signs that you are doing God's will. God is gentle and loving. God desires to give you a deep sense of safety in God's love. Once you have allowed yourself to experience that love fully, you will be better able to discern who you are being sent to in God's name.

It is not easy to give your agenda to God. But the more you do so, the more "clock time" becomes "God's time", and God's time is always the fullness of time."

The Inner Voice of Love
Henri J. M. Nouwen


This video will change your life.
I'm proud to say...these are my friends.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Beautiful Grace

Life is beautiful.
No matter what. Life is beautiful.
God created and what He creates is beauty.
Life. He created.
I can see Him. All around me, Him.
To bless. To glorify. To love.
My life is a mess.
Because of Beauty this mess is beautiful.
I'm learning to trust Him, but I seem to fail.
Grace. He is good.
I know He is there. All around me, Him.
To bless. To glorify. To love.

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

A Beautiful Thing in College Station

I had the privilege of joining the Aaron Ivey band on a little road trip to College Station, home of Texas A&M (aggieland.) last night. There is a "little" ministry there called Breakaway. They meet every Tuesday and there are around 5,000 students that show up. Yeah. Crazy.
This week they had to meet in this auditorium:
We had to do two services to fit everyone. It was packed out.
God broke into that place and moved powerfully. It was awesome. SO much fun. GREAT people. HUGE God.
My friend Ginger rode with me. The van was full of guys and so we followed them up there. I'm kinda glad I wasn't crammed in the van. I have a feeling it might have been kinda stinky. A van full of guys...c'mon.
So Ginger and I rocked the GirlPower and represented the ladies.
She shot this pic to take note that they say "gig 'em" every chance they get.
We are heading back up there next Tuesday and I can't wait! SO worth the REALLY late night and getting up early for work.
So humbled and thankful that God has called me to this ministry where I get to worship Him and lead others into His presence. Where I can see His spirit move through His people as they sing, shout, clap, raise their hands. It is a beautiful thing.

21 days

I can't even stand it. These sweet little faces I get to see in 21 days. I seriously love being an aunt. How can you not love these kids?!?!

Look at those dimples. Seriously. ohmyword.