Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Late night prayer

My earnest, deepest, never ceasing, most urgent prayer is for the people in my life to know Christ intimately, to continue to grow spiritually until they finally get to go meet Jesus face to face, and to worship the One who created them, saved them, and sustains them every day between the day they first call Him Lord and the day they worship Him in Heaven. I want the people in my life to live each day filled to overflowing with the love of Christ so that the people they come in contact with are drenched in the Love of Christ.


Sunday, September 27, 2009

Worthy is the Lamb

In Sunday School, we have been studying the life of Christ.
LAst week, we looked at Jesus in the Garden.
Today, Jesus before Pilot and the Roman Guards.
My mind, and our conversation, went to The Passion, about how that movie gave us a visual that is now seared in our minds' eyes.
I went to worship with these thoughts in my heart. Jesus paid an unimaginable price for MY salvation. I  thought about sitting in the theater and sobbing "I am so sorry, I am so sorry, I am sorry" as Jesus was beaten by the Roman Guards. I was crushed, devastated at the sight of the most horrid beating I had ever seen.....my Savior, My Lord, The Lover of My Soul...beaten, battered....the image is forever burned in my mind and the emotion I felt that moment forever burned in my soul.
The service started with the choir singing "Hungry". Great. Fabulous. I was truly Hungry for God's presence.
The choir left the choir loft, and the band lead us in Let My Words be Few:

With my heart already turned to the cross, it was impossible not to worship.
When we sang Worthy is the Lamb,I was overcome with emotion....
Found this video for it and it is very similar to the images in my head when we sang this morning. (beware, the scenes from Passion are graphic)

More thoughts about light

Last night before I fell asleep, a few more thoughts about light (or the lack thereof) ran through my head. I am actually surprised that I even remembered them this morning, but I did, so I might as well "write" them down. There was one other unrelated thought that flew through as well....I can't find spell check on the new blogger deal. I can't spel and I tranpsose letters and often missaspace or spa cein th ewrong place. So, until I figure out how to spell check again, you meay have to translate my posts!

I heard in some illustration that there is no such thing as cold. According to the illustration, cold is the absense of heat. We measure "cold" by measuring heat...or the lack of heat. Okay, whatever. In the same sense, there is no such thing as evil on its own....evil is the absense of good...or the absense of God. All right. Works for me-especially since hell is referred to as eternal seperation from God and that when Christ took on our sin on the cross he said "My God, My God, why have You forsaken me" after God turned from him...seperating Jesus from the Father.
Now, darkness is, according to this same illustration, the absence of light. (This came to mind when Calvin turned off the TV last night and the room went "dark".) According to the illustration (I guess I'd have saved time by Googling the illustration and putting it here) complete darkness is only the complete adsence of light.

Back to yesterday's post.....

There are women in my life, women who have been in my life, and I am sure there will be more women who I will meet between now and when I finally get to go see Jesus who strike me as "dark". Their light doesn't shine. Not all of these ladies are unhappy, depressed, or angry...they just don't shine.

One lady comes to mind in particular. She broke my heart because she was so blind to the life she lived....or to the life she COULD live. She could not look up from the path she was on to even see that there was another path. She went to church, but found no good in it. the things she valued about church were the superficial things we do...fellowship dinners, Valentine Banquets, Easter egg hunts and such. Her "darkness" was truly an absence of light. She wasn't "bad". She followed all the "rules" to be a "Good Christian Woman", but she had no light. Her conversation was sprinkeled with critisism. Her overall opinion on most things was negative. So many times I wanted to take her by the shoulders, look her dead in the eye and say "What is wrong with you? Have you completely missed everything going on here? Do you not know, after all this time we have been together, that God Almighty, the Creator of Heaven and Earth, The Alpha and Omega LOVES YOU LIKE CRAZY???? Do you not know that the same One who placed the stars in the sky carefully and tenderly created every detail of your face? That Jesus Christ is the lover of your soul? If you would just stop looking for things you DON'T like and focus, just for a short time, on CHRIST....your whole world would change!"
I have always (or since I first noticed it) thought that this "darkness" stood on its own, but if Darkness is really a measure of light, then there must be light there, even if it is very dim! The thought that there is light....or even that there is a possibility that maybe there could be light in these ladies fills me with SUCH hope!
The lady mentioned above has long since moved on. I never took the chance and laid it all on the line for her. At the time I knew her, I was afraid of her response. Today, I am afraid of God's response if I don't do everything I can to get each woman He places in my path to the foot of the cross, to the manger, to the garden, before Pilot, to the well, to the side of the woman caught in adultry....whatever it takes to get her into the arms of HER Savior.

The other thing that stampeeded through my head last night was that there are some women in my life that are simply radient. I have a friend fighting breast cancer right now. She has one more round of Chemo before she has surgery. She just glows. Her smile is contageous. She SHINES! She has chosen to focus onher SAVIOR who has ALREADY saved her rather to focus on cancer. She is amazing and is SUCH an inspiration to me. She is radiant. She is beautiful. She is a living testimony of what it means to be a Daughter of the Most High God. Her light is not dependant on her circumstance. She is full of Christ and He just shine through.

Women who are plugged in naturally shine. They don't have to work at it.

The light of Christ shines all around us when He is in us. I want so much of Him in me that everyone around me has to wear sunglasses to keep from being blinded!


Saturday, September 26, 2009

"There's still light in there"

"There's no light left in this lightbulb"
Brian was quite frustrated. He'd been trying for several minutes to turn on the lamp in the living room. In his 4 year old mind, if the light would not turn on, then there must be no light left in the bulb. In reality, there was nothing wrong with the bulb...I had unplugged the lamp.

Do you know anyone who's light has stopped shining?

Maybe even know someone who doesn't seem to have a light?

Perhaps, your light is a bit dim?

I know that there are times when I feel like there is no light left in me. We all go through periods of time when our light dims...or even goes out.

Is that because there is no light left in us?

No, just like the lamp in my living room, our light won't shine if we are unplugged! Every time my light has dimmed (or gone out)....I have been unplugged from the source of power that makes me shine. Every time, without exception, I have distanced myself from God, and, just like the lamp, I can't shine without being connected to the power source.

Think about the woman that came to mind earlier when I asked if you knew someone with a dim light.

 Is she plugged in?
So often, we pass judgement on our sister whose light is flickering.
We would be wise to consider the unplugged lamp. Like the lamp...the light is in there....she just needs to get plugged in to God so she can shine! And like the lamp, our sister likely will not be able to plug herself in....she may need a concerned sister to help her out.

We are all in this together! We are sisters in Christ...daughters of the Most High God!Remind the women in your life that the creater of the universe loves them like CRAZY!
And always remember...God Almighty is the Lover of Your Soul! You are a princess...and your Father is the KING of kings!

Now, let that light SHINE!


Friday, September 18, 2009

Izzy's Bible Verse for the Letter "B"

Ya know, there is something so special to me about my little one quoting scripture. Maybe it's just that she's my little one and I think she's super great. Maybe it is her 4 year old innocence. Maybe it is the twinkle in her eye. Maybe it is the way she removes any excuse I could ever have for NOT memorizing scripture! Whatever it is, it just makes my heart happy when she says "Hey Mom! A: All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God Romans free swenty free" or when she says "Hey Mom! B: Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shall be saved Acts sixteen firty one"

We went out to eat the other night and she had to potty (actually she has to check out the bathroom every where we go) and she walked up to a lady in the restroom and said "Believe on the Lord Jesus Price and thou shall be saved- Acts sixteen firty one"...I explained to the lady that Izzy learns them for school...and realized that we needed to work on the word "Christ"! ha ha


Tuesday, September 15, 2009

If all I had was one last breath...I'd use it just to sing Your praise- Just to say Your name

It is hard to imagine that it has been almost a year since my first surgery. It is hard to believe that this time last year I had no idea that my upcoming surgery to remove a "cyst" from my vocal cord would be the first of 4 surgeries, that I would be diagnosed with cancer, have a neck dissection, and spend the better part of 8 months being silent. It is hard to imagine...and now it seems like a dream. A distant memory. Still, from time to time something happens that reminds me that there was a time not so many months ago that I feared I would never speak again. That God would take my voice forever.
During those silent days I listened to a LOT of music. It nearly killed me sometimes, but I couldn't help it. I would drive in the car with the radio blasting and cry til I had no tears left. See, I LOVE to sing in the car. In my car I sound like...well, whoever is in my Cd player or on the radio! In the car I can sing loud and strong and not worry about notes or even words. That's never been the case when I sang in church (alone or in the choir or in the congregation). I was always so self conscious...worried about what people would think.
So, driving in my car, crying my eyes out because I couldn't sing, (or talk, or whisper) "I know you're there" by casting crowns came on and I made a promise...to myself more than anything...that if I was ever able to sing again I would "raise a noise to make the heavens ring".
On my way home from work today I was singing my heart out (yeah, I'm the one everyone makes fun of at the red light) and I remembered those days when I wanted more than anything to lift my voice in Praise and I thanked God...really deep down with everything I have thanked Him for those dark, silent days. Because of those dark days, I have an appreciation for lifting my voice in praise to the God who saves me. And I can truly say that "if all I had was one last breath, I'd spend it just to sing your praise, just to say your name" and "if all I had was one last chance, I'd take it- I'd stake it all on You" .
My God is amazing. He loved me enough to allow me to travel a dark, lonely road so that I'd learn to trust Him more. He loved me enough to allow me to be scared to death so I'd learn to let Him calm my fears. He loved me enough to take away my voice so that He could give it back to me as a precious gift.
It hit me again driving home today, I REALLY do love God. I mean really, deep down absolutely positively without any doubt love God. Head over heels crazy in love with Him.
So, enjoy the song....and sing with me at the top of your lungs.

Sunday, September 6, 2009


The hardest part of being a pastors wife is watching my pastor struggle. Being his wife allows me the blessing of being close to his heart. I am "on the inside". I know "the rest of the story". Sometimes that's really cool. Sometimes it knocks me to my knees.

I have never known a man seek the heart of God like Calvin does. He is just a man, and he is far from perfect, but he absolutely without question desires God's will in every aspect of his life. He grieves when God does not give him clear answers. He waits and suffers until God makes His will clear. Following God is as natural to him as breathing. The burning, all consuming desire in his heart to know God, to Follow God's will, and to lead God's church is evident to all who know him. He loves the church. He cherishes the church just as he cherishes our children. He knows that God has entrusted them to him...which brings me back to Calvin seeking the heart of God. Calvin truly puts what God wants for His church above anything else...above his own ambitions...above any of our own desires....He knows he will answer to God for how he leads His church and he takes that very seriously.

Most of the time, Calvin is alive, on fire, excited, and determined to share God's love for our congregation in a fresh way.

But there are times when the enormity of being the spiritual leader for such a diverse group weighs heavy on his heart. It is in these times that God reaches down and whispers to my pastors heart. I can always tell when He does, because Calvin is at peace. These are times when The Creator of Heaven and Earth takes a moment to speak to the heart of His pastor, not to give him a word for His people...He comes with a word for His Pastor...

"I love you"

"I am with you"

"I chose you"

"I am in control"

"Just follow me"

"Well done"

I don't know exactly what God whispers to Calvin's heart. I don't know if Calvin could put it into words. It's not something we talk about, but I know when it happens. Self doubt is replaced by confidence, not in himself, but in the One who guides him. "What if" is replaced with a calm assurance that things will be just as God intends them to be. Calvin is reminded that his job is to do what God says. That's all. God will take care of the rest.

It blesses my soul to know that the One who called Calvin to the life we lead takes time to whisper to his heart. It comforts me to know that God takes time to encourage the heart of my sweet pastor.

We all need to be affirmed. I never cease to be amazed at the love of my God, but I am left breathless when I am reminded that the great big God we serve takes time to affirm the heart of His pastor.


Saturday, September 5, 2009

Do you fall short of perfect?

You are not alone!

Every morning, I wake up and say to myself, "self, today we are going to get it right. Going to be a "perfect" mom, wife, friend, employee, pastor's wife... everything...total package. Today we're going to get it right".
Spend uninterrupted time alone with God.
No fussing at the kids and Calvin over things that don't really matter.
Spend time checking on friends, family, and Church members who aren't feeling well.
Be totally productive at work...and not transpose a single number in any of today's spreadsheets. Cook dinner (and clean the kitchen afterwards).
Spend quality time with family.
Make sure the house is spic and span before going to bed.
OH! No listening to (or worse yet, spreading) gossip.
Be a positive role model.
Give Biblical advice.
Be completely uplifting and encouraging in all my conversations (pick up on and point out the positive rather than the negative)
Don't get angry. ...."

Are you kidding me? Okay, sure, this might last for about an hour...because I am the only one awake in the house, but as soon as other people wake up and enter my world, well..."perfect" flies right out the window!

This week, one of the things I did was help my little Izzy learn her memory verse for preschool. SHe has to memorize one for every letter of the alphabet and this week was " A- All have sinned and come short of the glory of God. Romans 3:23"
We said it at LEAST 100 times this week. Every time we said it, she reminded me that I'll never be perfect, and neither will anyone else...and that's okay.

We all fall short....that's why we all need a Savior!

Here's her memory verse:

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Knit Together

Psalm 139:13 says:
For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb.
New International Version (NIV)

You are created by God. The same God that made the stars, butterflies, flowers, trees, mountains, and oceans made you. He took His time. Our Scripture for today says that he KNIT you together. Ever tried knitting? It takes time, effort, and concentration. You have to know what you’re doing. Each stitch is important. God KNIT you together. He chose the color of your eyes, the texture of your hair, your complexion, the shape of your fingers and toes. He even made you to naturally have an “apple”, “pear”, “hourglass”, or “box” shaped figure. He decided before you were born whether you’d be 5’3” or 5’11. He created the core of your personality …maybe you are NATURALLY an extrovert….or very shy…maybe you are a leader….or a follower…or an amazing listener, a nurturer, an encourager, or a dreamer. He chose the timbre of your voice. Those things you are truly passionate about are most likely passions placed in your heart by the Creator of the Universe before you breathed your first breath. He made you, created you from scratch. You are unique in His creation. Unlike any other. Created in HIS image!

He made you just EXACTLY the way He wanted you to be.

Your Challenge:

Today ask God to reveal to you some things HE did to make you…you.
Things that He knit together to make you different, set apart, a unique individual.
Things only HE could have placed in your being.
Make the list as long as you possibly can.
Thank Him for making you just exactly the way He wanted you to be.

Memorize Psalm 139:13. Bury it deep in your heart and pull it out each and every time you are tempted to compare yourself to ANY other woman today.