I am no longer the things of my past...I am the daughter of the Great I AM.

Exodus 3:14
And God said to Moses, "I AM WHO I AM." And He said, "Thus you shall say to the children of Israel, 'I AM has sent me to you.'"
2 Corithians 6:18
I will be a Father to you, and you shall be my sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010


I have spent this week leading music at Vacation Bible School. It is both a lot of fun and very tiring. As I question of the various age groups about what they have been learning, I always have children that will answer "Jesus." For those of you that have worked with children at church, you know that is a typical answer for every question. As I was thinking of this last night, it reminded me of something that happened while I was teaching first grade a few years ago.

I had a couple of boys in my class that year that were very smart, very loving, and very active. One of the boys was from a Christian family that was very active in their church. The other boy was from a family that rarely attended church. Even though these boys did not play together much at school, the first boy began inviting the second boy to church on Wednesday nights. The first boy's mom was faithful to go pick up the second boy and his sister every week for church.

One Wednesday in December the second boy came in telling me all about a birthday party he was going to that night. He would say, "It is for some man, I don't remember who, but there will be cake." Now I realize, as a Christian school teacher, I should have put two and two together... I should have realized that it is December, it is a birthday party at church, it must be for Jesus... I should have taken that opportunity to talk to this little guy about Jesus... However, I was busy being a teacher with the demand of a room full of kids, and never made the connection.

All day long, this boy would tell me about this birthday party for some unknown man. And all day long, I would say, "that is very nice, now get back to work." I promise, this exchange went on at least 20 times that day. Finally, as the kids were packing up to go home, this little boy said once again, "I am going to a birthday party tonight. It is for some man, I don't remember who, but there will be cake." However before I could answer, the other boy looked up exasperated, and with a voice that sounded like it started at his toes said, "IT'S JESUS!!!! IT IS A BIRTHDAY PARTY FOR JESUS!!!!!"

It never phased the boy excited about the party, however it greatly affected me. You see, I had missed my opportunity to tell this child about Jesus. Jesus is the only answer. He is the way, the truth, and the life. Without Him, you will not get to the Father. So remember, as you go about your day, it is all about Jesus.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

From Bitterness to Restoration

I have always loved the book of Ruth. I have considered it a book about love, and it is. However, as I was reading it a few weeks ago, God showed me this book is also a book about restoration. This blog will focus on God changing Namoi's life from one of bitterness to one restored.

In the beginning of the book we discover that because of a famine, Namoi's husband takes her and their two sons to another land. After arriving there, her husband dies. Her two sons marry and they live for 10 years. Then, they die. This leaves Namoi, and her two daughters-in-law alone. Namoi decides to return home. As they are traveling, Namoi tries to convince the younger women to return to their families. Orpah does return, but Ruth refuses to turn back.

In chapter 1 verse 13, Namoi says "God has dealt me a hard blow." When life gets hard, we made poor decisions, or someone else makes a poor decision that effects us, we often look for someone to blame. Naomi blamed God. She believed that God had forsaken her. As we read, we can see that God had a plan for both Naomi and Ruth.

When they arrived in Bethlehem, other women recognized Naomi, and asked about her. Namoi was quick to tell them that now she was Mara. Mara means bitter. We no longer change our names to match what we are feeling, but the way we behave does change. The name Namoi means beautiful, pleasant, delightful. She was no longer feeling these things... she was BITTER!

Ruth decided to go into the fields to glean among the sheaves. As a foreigner, she knew that she was at the mercy of the land owner. Chapter 2 verse 3 says that "eventually she ended up in the part of the field owned by Boaz..." God had led her to this field. God also caused Boaz to notice Ruth, and to favor her. God uses people to bless and favor you. He also uses you to bless and favor others.

When Ruth returned at the end of the day to Namoi, and told her all that had happened, Naomi recognized that God had indeed not left them. It was at this point that she realized that God was with them in the hard times and in the good. She could have overlooked this, but instead she chose to recognize it as God's hand.

As we know, Boaz marries Ruth, and they have a son. This son is presented to Naomi, and her restoration is complete. She went from being a bitter widow in a foreign land, to the great, great grandmother of David. The woman who believed God had dealt her a hard blow, had instead received great blessing.

There is an old saying that time heals all wounds... this does not apply to bitterness. If you allow bitterness in, it will grow, fester, and consume your life. Guard your heart to not allow discouragement and anger to become bitterness. If bitterness has already set in, you must make a choice to recognize when God is working... Look for His blessings in your life... Thank Him for all that He is doing... and Receive Restoration.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Power Nap

This week, I am tired! I know, it is only Thursday, and it is summer. I should not be tired right? Well, Ethan has had two out of town tournaments this week. That means that I have been awake before 5 a.m. twice this week. I have not made it to bed until after 10 every night... truth be told, it is closer to 11! On top of that, I have had tennis practice, taken Ethan to golf practice, cleaned house, done laundry (yea, that is everyday!), had company one day, and taken Erin to the pool before a storm struck. I have loved every minute, but it has left me tired.

This afternoon, I decided I needed a power nap. It is a rainy day, and both kids were watching Tom and Jerry. Perfect! So, I settled back in a big comfortable chair and closed my eyes. After the third question from Ethan, I asked him to let me take a quick nap. (Well, probably told more than asked...) After the sixth question from Ethan, I announced to the kids that I was going to lay down in my room for a few minutes. I gave instructions for them to finish their show, and stay out of trouble. I was just dozing off, and Erin had to come ask me a question. I told her that after I had a quick nap, then yes, she could finger paint. She was satisfied and returned to Tom and Jerry. (They really are good friends of mine!) Once again, I am just dozing off, and I receive a text message from Jason. The phone is charging right beside the bed, therefore I can't ignore it. At this point, I had spent 45 minutes trying to take a 15 minute power nap. I was even more tired, and now CRANKY! I gave up, and got up.

My physical body is fatigued and needs rest. My mental well being is cranky and needs rest. The same is true for our spirit. When we do not take the time to "rest in the Lord" our spiritual life can become fatigued and cranky. When we don't spend time daily seeking the Lord, we become depleted. When we allow daily distractions to keep us from fellowship with God and reading His word, we become tired. Just like it is important to provide rest for our bodies, we must also rest with the Lord.

We must walk daily with God, and seek His peace. He has promised to "renew our strength and restore our youth..." We may not always be able to take a power nap, but don't forget to power up by resting in the Lord.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Being 'Momish'

This week Ethan had tryouts for an Elite Golf Team. Being used to following Ethan as he plays in tournaments, I made arrangements to follow him as he played. When we arrived the first morning, I quickly realized that I was the only parent that would be in attendance. I had Erin with me, so I made a point of following at a distance. Close enough that I could see, but far enough back that we would not be a disturbance. In between holes, Ethan would come to our cart to get a drink of water, and of course a little encouragement and/or praise. As the boys were finishing up their round, I asked Ethan if he wanted me to follow again tomorrow since I was the only parent there. He quickly said, "yes, you didn't act 'momish' today."

I know that he meant it as a good thing, and I understood what he was saying. As I thought about his choice of words, it really made me consider how different people raise children. At this point in the lives of our children, it is very important that we be their parents, not their friends. It is good for us to have fun, let them know that we are involved, and enjoy being with each other. It is even more important that they know we are in charge. We are the parents. When they have grown, if we have raised them well, then they will also be our friends. I am standing on God's promise, "Train up a child in the way he should go, And when he is old he will not depart from it." Proverbs 22:6

Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. "Honor your father and mother"—which is the first commandment with a promise— "that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth."Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord. Ephesians 6:1-4