Saturday, June 25, 2011

Somebody Is!

Have you ever had one of those weeks? Maybe it's not just a week but rather you feel you have been walking through the valley of darkness for awhile. Maybe you are weary. However, there are those times when, in the midst of it, you know that somebody is praying for you. What a difference if can make.
I had a week full of struggles for many different reasons and some of it is residual stuff that has been going on for awhile, but it all just became a little too much. BUT I knew, I FELT somebody, actually many somebodies praying me through.What a blessing! We all need prayer warriors and it is something that we can offer to others in our lives. But don't just say "I'll pray for you" actually DO it and then follow up with them to see how things are going. If the time is appropriate, say "do you mind if I pray for you right now?" It doesn't matter how you think the prayer sounds; God knows your heart and the other person feels loved and cared for, and above all, not alone in their struggles.
Whatever is going on in your life today, know that you are not alone. Feel free to share your prayer requests here or under this link on facebook or in an email and know that I will be praying you through.

"Somebody's Praying You Through" By Allen Asbury:

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

A Simple Invitation

Last Friday I was Commissioned as a Provisional Elder in the United Methodist (I will save the explanation of the ordination process in the United Methodist Church for another post J). During the worship service, the Bishop laid his hands on each of us being commissioned and prayed for the Holy Spirit to be poured out upon us as we proclaim the Good News. Well this is a lot of names to remember and keep straight during a service so we help the Bishop out with a little card that has our name on it. This was my one thing to remember, my card. I had it at my seat but when I heard them call my name, do you think I remembered the card? No. So I’m standing up there and wondering what I am going to do and I see Rev. Bob Atkins standing there and start doing a game of charades, trying to get him to give me a piece of paper and then an appropriate writing object. He played the game well and soon I had my name written on a piece of paper for the Bishop. All was well. After the service, there was a reception and I got a chance to see Rev. Atkins and thanked him and before I knew it tears started to fall as I shared with him how he had made a difference in my life, not the paper (though that did help!) but because he was the pastor who was at Christ United Methodist Church when I first visited. I had a friend that simply invited me to youth group back in 1992. I went on to share with him that one of those first youth group meetings he came into the youth room and told us a story, I can’t tell you what it was. All I know is that he tied in a faith message with the song “The Rose.” I loved that Bette Midler song but had only known to separate “secular” from “sacred.”  But in that story and singing that song at youth group, I was taught how to combine faith and everyday life; how God works through the ordinary as well as the extraordinary; through those things that have been deemed secular as well as those deemed sacred. Rev. Atkins moved to another church just a few short months later and we never got a chance to know each other more but he made an imprint on my life. I can still remember my heart being stirred as I sat there on the floor of the youth room listening as he spoke.  He was there as my heart was being turned towards the message God was trying to share with me and then he was there as God was confirming my call to ministry: funny how God works.
 All this to say that you never know when you are going to make a kingdom difference in another’s life. A simple invitation to a youth group; a simple story; a simple smile; a simple offer to help another…all of these things can touch someone’s heart in a way you never could have imagined. God may use it to transform another’s life. I hope you will live into the extravagant simplicity that God has prepared for you.
Couldn’t help but share the song…

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

The Rearview Mirror

It happened today. I looked in the rearview mirror and simply saw. I quieted my heart and let myself take it in: my girls; especially, my oldest Gracie. They have grown and changed so much in the last year. I looked back and I saw…a young lady. Sometimes you have those moments that stop you in your track and you say, where has the time went, how did we get here. I was having one of those moments today.
So often we get caught up in the craziness of our everyday life or get focused on the negative things that we miss the Presence of God in our midst; we miss the beautiful things in our midst. Jeremiah 29:13 says, “If you look for me wholeheartedly, you will find me.”
So are you noticing the beautiful things that God is doing in your midst? In your life? Are you seeking God or is your focus on other things?
I heard this great song today on the radio (actually as I was watching my girls come out of the school). It’s called “Beautiful Things” by Gungor.  Here are some of the lyrics:
You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of the dust
You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of us

All around
Hope is springing up from this old ground
Out of chaos life is being found in You
You make me new, You are making me new
Take some time this week to look around (and maybe even in the rearview mirror) I’m enjoying my “beautiful things:” my now 5th Grader and my 2nd Grader!