Making Way For Ministry

Lately, the Lord has been speaking to me about ministry…a lot. This last week I had the privilege to do “ministry” in several different settings.  One day it was catching up with my team and then going to someone in need and ministering the presence of Jesus. It was powerful and it left me so overflowing with the awesomeness of Jesus that the people I worked with that night could tell something was up.

The next day I had my first women’s group at my house.  Such a seriously difficult and awkward thing for me. But because of Jesus I have only excitement about it.  All the expectation is on him.  I just said yes.  The group didn’t really go the way I saw it going in my head but I am completely confident that God will work through everything I see as a failure.  I know it because I’ve seen it over and over. The outcome was again a spiritual high that translated into some much needed downtime.

And then there was Sunday.  Pastor Gary brought it.  His message was on healing.  What the what?  There is no denying that this is a God thing.  He’s doing something…something in the way of healing.  For me, it was effortless to hear God’s voice and respond.  Again, IT WAS POWERFUL!  I was so filled with the presence of Jesus that when a flaming arrow was launched at me, my shield of faith was easily able to extinguish it.  Ephesians 6:16

I want more days like this.  I want to be about my father’s business. ALL THE TIME!  The Lord is showing me that my hearts desire is to be in full-time ministry.  Silly me, I had my own idea of what that would look like and when it would start.  I was thinking it could be my only paid job and I could see it happening 10 years or so down the road.

As I examine the last few days, I hear the Lord whispering that this is what He thinks it look like.  Making space in my life to minister to those around me, whether it’s at home, at work, in the grocery store, at school and so on and so on. It’s being in community with people and taking the time to know who people are and where they are at. It’s responding when Jesus says, “there’s someone who needs to experience Me.” Lots of people in my life experience Jesus simply by a big smile and a hot cup of coffee.  Others, an occasional lunch and a few hours to commiserate or a walk and encouraging conversation. Then there are those that God has said, these are the people I’ve put in your life to really invest in.  That is anyone who walks through the doors of my home (and now I know why Jesus told me to have the group in my home.) That is full time ministry and I am committing to making way for more of it in 2017.

 

 

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

His Plans

Proverbs 16:9  NLT   We can make our plans, but the Lord determines our steps.

If you know me, you know I am a recovering control freak.  Control has been my drug of choice for a very long time.  Thankfully, I can say I’m recovering because as much as I have a need to control things, Jesus has set my free!  I much prefer walking in freedom so I do everything I can to stay focused on Him so I don’t fall back into my old controlling ways.

Today, control has been rearing it’s ugly head from the moment I woke up.  But praise Jesus!  Because today, I am not letting control win. Today, I had plans but I stayed open the steps God laid out for me. I am however asking the Lord to cause the ministry time I had this morning to have the same effect on my physical body as the yoga class I missed.  He is, however, able to do ALL things. 🙂

Here’s what I mean: instead of doing yoga today, as I had originally planned, I had the privilege of doing ministry with a dear friend of mine.  She is struggling; because here’s a stupid truth – just because we follow Jesus doesn’t mean we don’t have struggles.  Sometimes those struggle threaten to take us out.  I’v had a lot of struggles that have almost taken me out. Currently, I am walking with several friends who are experiencing the same.  It’s stupid. Seriously.  But God wastes nothing and what I have learned through my struggles is priceless simply because it has produced a depth of relationship with Jesus that is radically changing me.

I am so very thankful for the women God has put in my life to make this faith walk with me.  Some of them are friends I will have for a lifetime, some of them are only for a season but each of them has held my hand and walked with me through really hard stuff.  They helped me find the Joy of the Lord and a Peace that surpasses my understanding simply by pointing me to Jesus.  My life is not without struggles.  Life is hard people!! But Jesus is freaking A-MAZING!

Will you join me in being willing to let Jesus interrupt our well devised plans?  I promise the result will be 100% worth it.  What do you need Jesus to do for you today?  My heart is to always be someone who is willing to go where ever Jesus says to go and I’d love it if you came along. It will be an adventure for sure.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Saying “yes”

Ecc 3:11   He has made everything beautiful in his time.

Psalm 62:8 Trust him at all times, pour out your heart to him for God is our refuge.

Phil 4:7  And the peace of God which transcends all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.

I love what the Lord is speaking to me through His word today. This morning I got a text from my friend that her son is back in the hospital and they’re waiting to find out if the cancer has spread.  My heart is weary today. I could easily focus on my fear  but God lovingly reminds me of His truth in Ecc.  I know this truth.  I’ve seen it in my life.  When I look at my life I see so much tragedy made beautiful because of Jesus. Most recently, I’ve been examining my marriage and the years of hurt I’ve accumulated. Much like my childhood, all I see right now is the hurt and pain, the stolen moments and disappointments.  As I trust Jesus and pour out my heart to him, He meets me in that hurt and I find refuge in Him. My heart understands the peace that Paul talks about in Philippians.

As I prepare to say “yes” to Jesus again and lead this group in my home, I know that it’s not always going to be easy. But, the process will take me deeper with my Savior and the end result will be something beautiful.  My prayer is that Jesus would be in control and lead us where ever he desires each of us to go.  It will be a personal journey but we will make it together. So join us as we seek to say “yes” to what Jesus is doing.

 

 

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Gingerbread Houses

Making gingerbread houses is one of my favorite holiday traditions. We’ve been making them for several years now and I think I have as much fun with is as my kids. This year we are doing another “semi”-annual gingerbread making party with around 30 or more of our closest friends. I say “semi” because even though our family makes them every year we only throw a party every other year.

Since I’ve been making the gingerbread from scratch for so many years I have it down to a T. However, it occurred to me that many of our friends cannot say the same. So for any of your interested in  step-by-step directions and a few tips & tricks I’ve learned along the way, read on.

This recipe works great because you don’t need to refrigerate it and it actually works better when it is a little bit warm.

Start here:

november 2012 177

1 cup shortening

1 cup sugar

1 cup light/dark corn syrup or molasses.

I like to use a combination of the corn syrup and molasses for a nice dark color. Corn syrup is cheaper than molasses which is why I like to combine them. If you plan on eating your houses (which we NEVER do) you would want to use just molasses for the best taste.

Combine above ingredients in pan and melt over LOW heat.

You want to melt it altogether but not let it get too hot and start cooking the sugar. It will take a while but works much better if it doesn’t get too hot.

Once it’s all melted together, remove from heat and stir in:

1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ginger
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon cinnamon

november 2012 180

 

Now to stir in the flour.  The easiest way to do it is transfer everything to a stand mixer. You need to add 4-4 1/2 cups of flour, one cup at a time.  By the time you get to the 4th cup the dough can be very stiff so a stand mixer is so helpful.

november 2012 181

Making sure you have enough flour is key.  The dough should be very stiff and not stick to your hand at all.

Now you are ready to roll out the dough.  I’ve found the easiest way to do this is tape parchment paper to your counter top. When rolling the dough out it will stick to everything.  I like to start with a floured surface, roll it out to about a 1/2 inch, then roll the dough up on my rolling pin and add some more flour, and then continue rolling it out.  The dough can be rolled fairly thin since it will bulk up a bit when it bakes.  Once you’ve got it rolled out you can take your pattern pieces (printed on cardstock) and, using a sharp knife, begin to cut out the pieces.  If your dough becomes too dry you may need to heat it up again.  You can put it in the microwave for 10 seconds or so. Although, I have never done that.  Since I do not have a microwave I like to wrap the part I’m not using in foil and place it on the stove top of my warm oven.  That works well for keeping the dough soft and pliable.

november 2012 183

Move pieces to a baking sheet, either lined with parchment paper or sprayed with cooking spray.  Bake at 350 for 6-12 minutes.

Cool pieces for several minutes on baking sheet after removing from oven so the pieces have time to harden and don’t become to misshapen.

Each recipe typically makes 4 houses for me depending on how thin I roll it out.

 

Good luck.  Hopefully, you have fun making the pieces and are able to join us to assemble them and decorate them.  Looking forward to it.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Way too long

It has been forever since I posted anything.  Blogging makes my list of things to do around # 249 or so and since I only get to about 6 or 7 things a day, it never gets done.  However, that doesn’t mean I don’t think about blogging.  I have several things I have done recently that would make great posts but with my lack of time and battling my kids for the computer it just doesn’t get done.  This afternoon something I consider to be extraordinary happened and I have to share.

I made a comment to Lexi that my head hurt.  Without even a thought she said, “Can I pray for you?”  My heart skipped a beat and as she prayed for me I nearly lost it.  My heart was overwhelmed with emotions. I was thankful God has given me the opportunity and privilege of being home with my kids and raising/teaching them in the way God desires. I felt so much joy that her response to the situation was to give it to God. 

Proverbs 22:6 says, Train up a child in the way (s)he should go and when (s)he is old (s)he will not turn from it. This was the verse God laid on my heart. What God has called me to as a mother & a teacher is so very hard sometimes.  But like everything else it has up and downs. Today was a new high for me.  Through my little Lexi, God revealed that my obedience is producing true Godly character in my children.  And for that it is all worth it.

I tried to share this precious moment on facebook but I was told the content was considered abusive. WHAT? How can that be?  But at least I am able to share it here. 

I will try harder to be at least a little more consistant in posting.  Until next time……

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Breakfast

This morning I’m enjoying the sunshine, albeit from inside at my desk however sadly I need to get some work done. Also enjoying this after a great yoga workout.

20120627-114913.jpg

This is a huge switch from the diet I’ve been doing with my hubby. That diet is working great for him but after about a month has left me seriously frustrated with the lack of weight loss and immensely desiring more variety. So I took a short break and am trying a 7 day diet I found on pinterest. Not sure what the end result will be BUT I get to eat fruit for 2 of the 7 days and that is such a treat. I’m only on day 3 but I’ve lost some weight and I feel pretty good. I’m gonna wait till I finish my 7 days before I share how much weight comes off.
Alright guess I better get to that work I said I needed to do. 😃

Posted in the day to day | Leave a comment

A big day

It’s the first day of summer, the sun is finally shining and this guy is getting his permit. Wow! Seems like just yesterday I was holding him in my arms daydreaming about the kind of man he would grow up to be. Being a parent is such a roller coaster of emotions. Today I feel just as nervous as he does. I am also crazy excited for this new phase of his life. He has more than exceeded all those daydreams I had for him as a baby. He has grown to be a kind, honest, big-hearted guy, who knows who he is and what he wants. I am so proud to be his mamma.

20120620-103250.jpg

Posted in Oh those kiddos | Leave a comment