Archive: March, 2014

Let Your Light Shine

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“This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine…” the kids burst into song. I hear their sweet voices echo from the backseat and I begin to think. My candle is lit; I am on fire for God. My purpose, our purpose is to spread His light. One little candle can light up a room but Jesus can light up an entire world … and my small flame can be a part of that. I am continually blown away that my Lord Jesus who can do this all by Himself chooses to let me be a little part of it.

I want to be challenged, to learn more every minute, to share God’s love with people walking around unaware. I want to feel needed, used by the Lord, able to make a difference no matter how small. I want to give my life away, to comprehend losing my life and what it means to find it (Matt. 10:39). I want to serve the Lord daily, with every breath, every moment both inside and outside my home. Opportunities to tell people God loves them and desires to lift them from this dust and into His glory.

One of my great joys (outside my family) is to disciple my friend, Betty. Betty is only 58 years old but the hardness of her life wears across her face. We scoot a chair underneath her modest kitchen table and crack open our Bibles. The worn, scribbled on pages flip with grace to the book of John. We start here. I want her to find Him in between the lines…I want her to know the one true God and Jesus Christ whom he sent (John 17:3).  Most days I am a mess and feel anything but qualified to lead a bible study. I make a lot of mistakes but God will use me, in spite of all that. He can use you too.

We finish our study and close our Bibles and begin to talk about our ministry at the Castaway Motel. I ask my trusted friend, with slight hesitation as I’m not sure my heart can handle her response, “Do you think our ministry to share Christ with people is making a difference?”

She takes off her reading glasses and places them gently on her red King James Bible. I feel my eyes quiver a bit upon her reply, “Well, yes. Even if just one person accepts Christ as Savior, that’s enough…don’t you think?” Maybe I wrongly define success by vast numbers and make-shift tent revivals. Maybe I forget to be obedient in the small and anticipate His faithfulness in the big. Maybe I forget I’m the seed planter, not the crop grower.

I don’t cry often anymore but this touches me. The tears push themselves like a parade down the side of my face. I say, “Yes, you’re right. I just needed a gentle reminder, I guess.”

Over and over God ministers to me through someone I thought I came to minister to. He shows me His heart and His Word in new ways right here in the life I am living and through the people I am serving.

How blessed we are to be called His servants. I am thankful that He who sits so high would bend low upon people like us and use us as his vessel. How blessed we are to experience the breath of God as he fans our ember into a roaring flame, set ablaze for the glory of God.

My sweet sisters, don’t ever underestimate your little light. Keep letting it shine because God will use it and direct it where it will shine the brightest.

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What Would Your Day Say About You?

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Discuss three things that happened today. How did you feel? Frustrated, mad, happy, thankful, or fearful? The question my husband and I discuss in our couples bible study.

Well, I’ll go first,” I say with an abrupt tone. The dog pooped on my friend’s front porch and that made me frustrated. Second, due to the inconvenient fact that no Kleenex were present in the car, I was forced to blow my nose into my scarf while passengers in the neighboring car looked on in horror. I felt embarrassed. Last but not least, the kids smeared dirty water all over the ping pong table outside, the dog licked it, then threw up on the floor. That made me mad.

Shall I continue?

I must confess y’all, I didn’t particularly care for that exercise.

If my day could talk, it would say, “You spent most of me…

Mad,

Frustrated,

Embarrassed, and

Overwhelmed.

My sweet friends, I don’t want to simply cope with life. Survive the day.

I don’t want to pinch myself awake until numbness wears off.

Do you?

Then I remember something about the Apostle Paul. He said, “Do it all to the glory of God,” (1 Corinthians 10:31). This verse opens the possibility of making every act of our lives contribute to the glory of God. What I do and how I do it, matter to Him.

Every word.

Every action.

Every reaction holds the potential to be worship in the raw. Glory to God in spite of poopy porches or snotty scarves! I admit I need practice in this area.

Paul tells us we must set our minds on things above (see Col. 3:2) and practice living for His glory, actually and determinedly.

Underneath the schedule.

In between activities.

In the middle of the mess ~ we must meditate on God’s Truth, talk it over with Him often in our prayers, and remind ourselves frequently as we scale the walls of “to-dos.” It takes intentionality and resolution and determination. Aggressive faith. We must offer all our acts to God and believe He accepts them. Then hold firm to that position and keep insisting every act of every hour of the day and night be included in the transaction. Go to God in closet communion and tell him we mean every act for His glory then supplement those times by a thousand thought prayers as we go about the job of living (paraphrase Pursuit of God, Tozer).  

Oh yes, that’s it. A thousand thought prayers. Daily. Hourly. Seconds bursting with the overshadowing Presence of God. God help me to do this … then as I perform the elementary, I will hear the voice of the angels worshipping the lamb, “Holy, Holy, Holy … the whole earth is full of His glory,” and I will sing along with them (because I’m adding to His glory, not stealing it away)!

Then my day’s reflection will become one of:

Refreshment,

Comfort,

Encouragement, and

Peace.

So as you reflect on today ~ What would your day say about you?

 

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Book Club Info.

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Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations…” (Matthew 28:19-20). We are persuaded by God’s Word that the church is the primary means in which the Great Commission will be accomplished (Eph 1:22-23, Acts 1:8, 1 Cor 12). Before we are moms or wives, we are Disciples of Christ. The goal of our book club is to encourage each other and do life together as we reach our community for Christ. As women, we have a great responsibility as we minister both inside and outside the home.

 We meet in the fellowship hall every first and third Wednesday of the month from 6:30-7:45 p.m. Childcare is available.

God Calms the Chaos: Be Still

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Overloaded. Stressed. Busy. Lonely. Overscheduled. We don’t compare notes or even talk about it much. Maybe because we think we can be all and do all, all of the time. We are pretty good at figuring things out, multi-tasking, checking boxes, and getting things done. We promote ourselves as self-reliant, resourceful networkers when underneath it all, we are disconnected and exhausted. I think it’s the pressure to be a performer on the stage of our life: a great mama who helps glue and create science projects, a sacrificial wife who forfeits a shower to help her husband at work, a trailblazer for God whose sacrificial service is unmatched. Maybe we even push ourselves to do a little more because our self-worth’s at stake. Oh my sweet sisters, this creates a breeding ground for … Chaos. Un-reasonable expectations. Impossible goals. Does any of this sound familiar?

I consider myself an unfortunate expert of sorts. I trip into the trenches of chaos weekly. I run full speed on the treadmill of discord until my legs buckle and refuse to move another inch.

Why do I run towards the empty?

The spaces void of anything good?

Why don’t I escape to the quiet, the stillness of my room, shut the door and pray to my Father in secret? Why don’t I call on the One who spoke something into nothing? The One who spoke the very nature of chaos into order?

That is our God after all. His strength. His order. He waits to calm stormy seas that swirl deep within…All we have to do is ask.

But will we?

He desires to be our dwelling place even while our feet trod the road of simple earthly duty. God winks at our weakness and overlooks unfinished to-do-lists that seem to label us failure. Praise God He isn’t looking for a woman who can get it all done in 24 hours! Instead, He is looking for a woman who will come behind the veil and push into His presence one quiet moment at a time.

“Be still and know that I am God,” He says.  He says it as if he means to tell me that my strength and safety lie not in the noise but in silence (see Pursuit of God, paraphrase, Tozer). We must step out of the worldly parade long enough to get still with Him. A worldly procession that shouts your success is how much you can accomplish in a day. God’s intelligible word says just the opposite. Ecclesiastes 4:5-6 tells us wise people practice moderation and contentment and quietness. We don’t want to be fools with fistfuls of frantic; we want to be wise with limits and stillness.

God calls himself, “I am that I am.” May I apply that to us today? As the noise of life creeps up a decibel level, imagine our Savior’s voice: I am the stillness that is your hearts cry. I am the green pasture that awaits instead of a busy parking lot. I am your soul-rest from normalcy and monotony. I am the organizer of your chaotic mess. I am the only sustainer you’ll ever know. Come and find me. Call out for me. Get still with me. You will be so glad you did.

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