Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Are you prepared?

As you may or may not know, my family and I live in Bayou Country. Today it is beautiful and sunny out. The sky is bright blue with big, puffy, white clouds. It is hard to believe that not too many miles away, a storm of large proportion is brewing. Sitting here looking out at my back yard I could easily become complacent about the coming storm. Heedless of my preparations or lack thereof, Isaac slowly makes his way to our home.

We have been busy the past few days making diligent preparations. We have purchased provisions to see our family through the storm and it's aftermath. We stocked up on water and non-perishable food. We secured flashlights, batteries, candles, and matches. We cooked up some goodies to eat as we play games together. Now we wait.

While we have been actively working the past few days getting prepared, I have been pondering something. Am I as prepared spiritually as I need to be for the storms that come my way in life? Not every storm is as gracious as a hurricane to give ample notice before it's arrival. Sometimes we get hit with storms that are more akin to tornadoes. They spring up out of nowhere and leave devastation in their wake. When those storms, or trials as we often call them spring up, am I ready?

I have been reminded of the passage in I Peter 4:12~"Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you."

Much like National Hurricane Center has been warning us for several days, Peter, too has cautioned us. We, as Christians, ought not be surprised when storms brew in our lives. Rather, we need to learn to rejoice in the storms. I Peter 4:13 goes on to say, "But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ's sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy." We do not have to weather the storms in our own strength. We can rest in the all-powerful, all-sufficient strength and grace of God!
II Corinthians 12:9,10~"And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee;for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ's sake: for when I am weak, then I am strong."

My prayer is that I will be as ready for my spiritual storms as I am for Isaac. If you happen to think of us down in the Bayou the next few days, please say a prayer for us. We do not want to float away! :) God bless!

Friday, August 24, 2012

Ministry Monday

One of the reasons, I felt led of the Lord to start this blog, was to serve as a source of encouragement to other women serving in ministry. Serving the Lord alongside of my husband is one of my greatest blessings in life. That being said, it does not mean it is always easy. There are days when ministry can be overwhelming, lonely, or just plain hard.

As we are reminded in Hebrews 10:24~"And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works", my prayer is that any ministry related post would be beneficial in nature. There are enough nay-Sayers to go around. We must surround ourselves with people, literature, and music that will encourage rather than discourage! People and circumstances can bring many negative things in our lives.Although that is an unavoidable aspect of life, if we are not careful to balance those, we can quickly feel overwhelmed. My hope is that this segment of the blog will encourage you, a fellow servant of the Lord.

As I have already shared with you, both my parents and my sister are involved in full-time Christian service. Most of my closest friends also serve in ministry. Through watching their lives and knowing my own struggles, it is apparent to me, that we need to be busy provoking one another to good works. :) Ministry, it is the best of times, it is the worst of times. Those of you who are involved, surely know what I mean by that. I pray that through my Ministry Monday blogs, some of you may find a place to come, share, and leave heartened for the task before us.

What is your favorite thing about ministry?

Fighter Verse for School

Happy 2012-2013 school year! It almost feels like we get another New Year's Day. I both love and loath the start of school. The chance to get into a regular routine and get organized always excites me. My heart does a little happy dance when I see all of the school supplies out in the stores. My Charles and I love to shop for school and office supplies! There is nothing like a brand new, cute, notebook and colorful pen to inspire organization. :)

On the other hand, the absence of our "free" schedule will be mourned. I love not having to be up and at 'em at a certain time each morning. The freedom to come and go at random is a highlight of summer. This summer we were able to pack in much fun. We enjoyed all of our company. God allowed us special time with so many of our dear family and friends. We are blessed!

With the start of the school year upon us, life has gotten a little more busy. Our church is privileged to have a Christian school. Each year the staff and teachers put so much work into getting ready for the parents and students. SCA is blessed with a wonderful staff of highly, devoted Christian men and women who are eager to be a part of training young men and women for the Lord. This year their preparations were made a little more difficult by the fact that our building was struck by lightening only two weeks before school was to begin. We lost most everything that has a cord and suddenly had a leak spewing from a pipe into three different rooms. It was a whirlwind of crazy activity, but the Lord allowed us to open on time with only a few glitches. My husband was a trooper helping them get the computer lab all set up again. He even enlisted the help of our 11 year old son. It was an "all-hands-on-deck" few days around our church and school.

This year the Lord has put it on our hearts to teach our boys at home. There are a host of reasons why; however, the most important one, is to spend some devoted time helping shape and mold their character. Perhaps at some point I'll share more what we are doing toward that end. But, that was an extremely long introduction to share this with you...

As I prepared for our classes this year, I purchased a new lesson plan book. :) In said planner, it has a weekly goal/accomplishment page. I am quickly finding that my favorite part of this planner is the weekly "fighter" verse. Each week, there is a spot to fill in a with a verse that will be your focus or encouragement for the week. While I was penning our verse for week one, I knew I had to share it with you. Regardless of how your children are taught at school, this should be a prayer each of us has for each of our children.

Colossians 1:9,10~For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in knowledge of God.

Happy School Year!

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Happy Anniversary

Today, in the midst of a busy family and ministry day, I want to take a moment to wish my wonderful parents, Happy Anniversary! Today they celebrate 39 years of (mostly) wedded bliss. :) To me, they have been wonderful examples of love, grace, forgiveness, integrity, and hard work. For that I am forever grateful. However, what I am most appreciative of is their faithfulness to the Lord and to each other. Year after year I have watched them serve the Lord together, side-by-side, without ceasing. Their ministries have changed, their addresses have changed. What has never wavered was their love for the Lord and each other. I have had the privilege to watch them work, day after day, to honor God in their marriage.

Thank you Mom and Dad for being amazing parents and giving me a wonderful example of a God-honoring marriage. I love you both! Congratulations!