Sunday, April 5, 2009

My Purpose Statement

During one of our NLQ weekend meetings, we were challenged to write out our purpose statement and for us to really put thought into what we felt God had put us here on this temporary earth for....so I thought I would share mine...

1. I want to live my life where I have a love for ALL people, no matter what they bring to the table with them...love with no strings attached.

2. I want to build relationships with older and younger women and disciple those coming behind me to love Jesus and pursue Him with all that they have.

3. I want to live by the Spirit and produce fruits of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.

4. I want to be more 'in the world and not of it' in order to build relationships with non-believers which, God-willing, may lead to salvation.

5. I want to be disciplined in my relationship with the Lord, grow in my love for the Word, and fall deeper in love with Jesus...and in all of this, always remember that this world is not the goal - it is only momentary.

SCRIPTURAL FOUNDATION:
"Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal." -2 corinthians 4:16-18

"Be imitators of God, therefore, as dearly loved children and live a life of love, just as Christ loved us and gave Himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God." -ephesians 5:1-2

Have you ever gave any detailed thought into what your purpose is and examples from the Word to back it up?...

Friday, February 27, 2009

always learning...

so i just want to say that i am forever grateful that the Word of God is new and fresh every time i pick it up. i am learning so much these days and it makes my heart happy. :) life is moving at an ever faster pace....seriously, when did it get to be march 2009? 2 days away from march...crazy.

the past few months have been a whirlwind and these past 2-3 weeks have been the craziest of all. just a few short weeks ago, i watched a dear friend walk away from the faith that i believed was as important to her as it is to me.....but when Scripture was shared with her, she stated, "that doesn't apply to me"......wow, that was like a serious knife to the heart. since when did the Word become something we could pick and choose from like some nasty buffet...honestly, i hate buffets.....the thought of eating at ryan's or golden corral makes me gag.....and i feel like that is what the Word has been equated to anymore. YES, it does apply to you...every chapter, sentence, word, period....it all is useful. so needless to say, this experience has left me with lots of processing that has been done and more to come i'm sure....

shortly after this experience, i spent a wonderful weekend with 5 sweet and precious college friends. it was the first time we'd all been in the same place at the same time in over 2 years and let me just say that it was incredibly refreshing. we talked and played and shopped and ate and stayed up late....they are all precious women of God who are walking closely with the Lord and it was a Godsend to get to spend those 48 hours with them...

and as of late, i have begun meeting with a lady from my church...Joan Shaw. she is a great woman of God who is a serious prayer warrior and retired teacher. we are like two peas in a pod. :) our church, Stonebridge Community Church, has challenged us to begin meeting in small groups through the week for prayer and accountability and Scripture reading....Joan and i have only met twice so far but it has been so refreshing....we are truly spurring one another on.....let us encourage one another while it is still today.....and you tell me that Scripture doesn't apply to you...bah....

in closing, i love Jesus more today than i did yesterday......and He is becoming more real to me at 26 years of age than ever before.....guess it is true that with age comes wisdom? i sure hope so, at least...:)

and the ball is rolling on the house....survey work is being done in the next week and we have begun clearing off the land.....house plans are being finalized and bids are being gathered....ceramic tile as been bought, purchased a new couch and loveseat, and have been going crazy on buying decorative items...figure i better buy them know before the house payments begin and i don't have the extra funds.....:)

Thursday, November 27, 2008

feliz dia de gracia....(a.k.a. happy thanksgiving)

well, here it is....Thanksgiving 2008. I find myself in a very different place this Thanksgiving than I did the last. Most different is my actual physical location. This Thanksgiving is spent living at my parents house....yes, at 26 years of age I am living with my parents.....and it has been just great. :) Turns out that I will also be spending Christmas at home this year and soon thereafter, I will begin construction on my home. This extra time has allowed me to gain some better control on my finances which has been a huge blessing. I was really sad that I wasn't going to get to decorate for Christmas, especially since last year I purchased several new decorations, but my mom has (without much thought on her part) agreed to let me decorate the house with my decorations....which means I get to get out all my snowmen and my nativity AND my new tree, first time out of the box! :) Life is good....:)

so in honor of Thanksgiving, I am going to list out some of the many things I am thankful for....random and in no particular order (which is unusual and out of character for me! ha)...here goes...

*a very personal and intimate relationship with Jesus Christ....without this fact in place, all the rest of the list would be meaningless, meaningless, utterly meaningless...He gives my life purpose and He has given me a peace in this crazy world that passes all understanding...
*a family full of believers in Jesus! everyone except for my youngest 3 nieces (ages 5, 5, and 6 months) have professed Jesus as their Lord.....and out of 15 immediate family members, that isn't too bad of a percentage. :)
*a great job close to home....the Lord was so sweet to me provide me with a great place to work with some Christian co-workers, but also a place where I get to be salt and light for Him. :)
*my puppy, Tucker...this may seem silly to some, but Tuck was a great help to me when I was in a very lonely place in life while in Bolivar....he is a great little buddy to have around. :)
*a new church called Stonebridge Community Church....a family of believers that are so real and honest with one another....a place where I feel connected and welcomed yet challenged every week.
*pumpkin rolls from the Wal-Mart bakery :) yes I know, but it has brought my household much guilty pleasure since the Halloween season until today. :)
*my No Longer Quiet family....Chris, Earl, Eric, Jared, Seth, Brittany, Elizabeth, Kendall, James, Matt, Will, Anthony.....what a great opportunity to further the Kingdom...I pray for all of these that we would never settle for good things when we've been promised God's best. :)
*a college education that is ALMOST paid for :)
*good health....thank you Jesus for a strong immune system while working with small children everyday :)
*bouncy balls.....yes, I am thankful for them. :)
*hooded sweatshirts and my black Converse low-tops....a great fix after any stressful day. :)
*God's provision in my life and my family's life....I've never gone without.
*cheaper gas prices! my weekly gas fill-up has gone from $60.00 to $26....praise the Lord!
*text messaging...some hate it, but I love letting people know at any moment of the day that I'm praying or thinking of them....and I also love to receive them throughout the day. :)
*the chance to be a teacher and work with such an impressionable group....and seeing a child's faith in me that keeps my life in perspective and reminds me to have the same child-like faith in my Father.
*sports....I love the St. Louis Cardinals and Mizzou Tigers and love watching games with my family.
*that my youngest nephew (Cody-7th grader) won the junior high championship in basketball this year in our area and my oldest nephew (Caleb-sophomore) is going to be a starter on the varsity basketball team this season...and that I'm here to get to watch ALL of their games. :)
*music and the outlet it is for me to worship my Jesus....for the gift of music in my own life and that God is so perfect in giving me a ministry to travel with that uses music as an outlet to minister to others.
*and i'll end the list with this.....Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.....in the midst of an ever-increasing unsettled world, I have a constant in my life that will NEVER change....I may change and falter, but He refuses to change...and for that, I am eternally grateful....

enjoy your day, wherever you are and whoever you're with, and remember that Jesus is the reason for the season. :) haha.....but seriously, He is....:)

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

worship...

so i just had a great weekend spent in the middle of nowhere, missouri...and I do truly mean the middle of nowhere, no cell service and everything. :) we were at a retreat campground place called the Ark, in Eagle Rock, just shy of Cassville, MO. we were there to lead worship for a youth group from Ozark, MO.....so all that to say that it was an amazing time. I have spent the last several years, i think about 6 or 7 or so, traveling with a ministry called No Longer Quiet. My best friend and I spent several of our weekends during college leading small group Bible studies for high school girls during disciplenow weekends and this summer i traveled full-time with them. well, as i've grown older, my role with NLQ has changed...actually, the whole face of NLQ has changed, but my role has moved into more of a mentor type role for the females who are now a part of the ministry. anyway, all that to say that this past weekend I had the privledge to lead worship alongside 3 of the greatest guys I know. earl, briz, and seth....3 guys who i have the utmost respect for and they are some of my greatest friends. it was such a sweet time worshiping my Jesus. we learned a hillsong song that we did during the weekend called "none but Jesus"....i just wanted to share some of the words...

in the chaos, in confusion, i know You're soverign still
in the moment, of my weakness, you give me grace to do Your will

so when You call I won't delay
this my song through all my days

there is no one else for me, none but Jesus
crucified to set me free, now i live to bring Him praise.....

all my delight is in You Lord, all of my heart, all of my strength
all my delight is in You lord, forevermore....

such truth to that...He truly is the One and Only as it says in John chapter 1....it was such an honor to lead those students to an intimate place with Jesus....hoping for more opportunities such as this one.....up next, leading at an old friend's church in Hazelwood, MO (north St. Louis) next weekend over True Love Waits materials....and then only 2 more days of work before a much welcomed Thanksgiving break, praise the Lord :).....

Saturday, October 25, 2008

i stand amazed in the presence of Jesus the Nazarene
and wonder how He could love me
a sinner condemned, unclean

how marvelous
how wonderful
and my song shall ever be

how marvelous
how wonderful
is my Savior's love for me

...yep, that pretty much sums it up for me...:)

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

why, why, why...

i feel like I could very well write a chart topping country song these days. do you ever wish you just didn't care so much? i have learned that sometimes it is painful to care so much and last time I checked, no one truly cared for pain....even when we know it's beneficial, we still don't really like it....

my job these days is great but draining. every day, I receive affirmation that I am doing what God wants me to be doing...I have ZERO doubt about that. but even when God calls you to do something, He never promised that it would be easy....and my job is not easy. now i'm not asking for pity, not by any means, but I just need to say that I am drained. I just don't know how people who don't draw their strength from the Lord can teach...

and then there is the area of relationships....i miss my friends that are scattered over the course of several states....missouri, arkansas, oklahoma, texas, tennessee, mississippi....I wish I had the time to just come and stay a few days with each of you to visit...just to catch up...no agendas, just a refreshing time with my friends. but that doesn't appear to be coming soon, so I shall press on...with a smile, of course...:) and there is one relationship in particular that is causing me fits...working on guarding the old heart-a-roo and wondering if and when that battleground is conquered....

random thoughts, i know.....but thoughts nonetheless :)

still reading romans 12:9....love MUST be sincere. HATE what is evil; CLING to what is good.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

romans 12:9

love must be sincere. hate what is evil; cling to what is good.

as i read this, 2 particular words jump out at me...must and cling.

must = there is no option
cling = image of a child desperately hanging on to a parent that is leaving them on their first day of kindergarten or at sunday school class, both of which i've witnessed...that kid is gonna do whatever it takes to not let go of that mom or dad's leg.

then 2 other words stick out...sincere and hate, both strong words.
in this verse, love is directly connected to sincere and hate is directly connected to evil.

these 13 simple words in romans 12:9 sum up for me what a relationship with Jesus Christ is really supposed to look like on a day-to-day basis. do i really and truly and honestly love people? am i sincere? are my motives always pure? do i hate evil? am i disturbed by the things i see and hear? am i clinging...desperately holding on to what is good, to the point that i would panic if i were to lose it?

i can't help but think of one of my favorite switchfoot songs...we were meant to live for so much more, have we lost ourselves? i find myself longing for truth...sincerity in a world where everything is false. what to do, what to do...definitely time for a reality check...love MUST be sincere...