Monday, December 13, 2010


i completely stole the following, but it rings SO true....

What does it mean to experience God? Every church culture has their preferred answer to that question, and I have been around long enough to have seen it all. While I certainly acknowledge that God can do whatever he wants, I am concerned that our tendency is to confuse experiencing God with amusing ourselves. I fear that we seek the thrill of God like he is the latest amusement park ride or bungee jump.

Must ecstasy be necessary to validate a God encounter? What about the small, the subtle, the profound…or the ordinary? Have we been conditioned to believe that goose bumps are the ultimate symptom of an authentic encounter with God? Damn, I hope not - because I can get goosebumpy from hearing my daughter, Carlee, sing the national anthem :) (or for me, my son, Maz... doing just about anything)

What if God is in the ordinary and we miss it because we are looking for the big and flashy? What if he is right there at the Little League game, at the homeless shelter, when you are making love to your wife, holding the hand of a friend, or noticing the green in the spring leaves?

Experiencing God isn’t just about having a feeling – as wonderful as that might be. It's about relationship…you know, that messy stuff that encompasses the good, the bad, the attractive and the ugly. God wants us to experience him in the moments of our lives and to respond with questions, the frustrations, the wonder and the awe that really come out of our experiences.

How do we cultivate an existence where experiencing God is a lifestyle? My hunch is that it is primarily about awareness…looking around and taking the time to notice. How different might things be if I viewed every situation of my life as an opportunity to encounter God in some way, which turns into a reason for relationship? Maybe the experience of the ordinary would be sweeter and the pain of the struggles would not be so lonely.


"find a way to change your point of view, and that will change.... everything"

one would think that by listing my blessings my point of view would be changed... i've always had the "get over it attitude." so, it bothered me this morning when i was frustrated and i couldn't just "get over it." i went about my day anyway... still frustrated, but trying to make the most of every opportunity... because that's what i do. and, in time it worked... i went sledding with my boys. and then we came to my moms and i got in the hot tub with maz. as soon as i was in there i was feeling better... well, shoot... as soon as i was freezing in the snow with my boys i felt better. some things just take time. not much to say other than that. i love my boys.


School was cancelled here in Bremen today. Not a good day. I live in town so I'm not too sure why school was cancelled. There is some snow on the ground, but I thought we could handle a little snow. I guess there is a winter storm warning or something. Oh well. It is what it is. Unfortunately, today I am irritated. And, well.... it's not fun to be irritated. So, now is a good time to list my blessings.

*relationships... This could be an entire list of names, but it would be difficult to make the list complete because really there are so many relationships that are simply blessings to me.

*hugs and kisses... I've got this little boy here that is pretty much always available for a hug or kiss :)

*a warm home


*a vision... God gave me a vision for a youth center in Bremen... i continued seeking Him, praying, praying, and praying some more... and it looks as if this vision may become a reality soon.

I've been praying like crazy for God to work in me and through me... and I know that He will have his way in my life. But, that doesn't mean there won't be difficult days. And, well... that sucks. Every day should be amazing :)

Yet today I will end with a quote that my friend shared on her page....

To be blessed doesn't mean that you are untroubled, healthy, admired, or prosperous. It means that all is well between you and God, that you are deeply secure and profoundly content in God even though you may be weeping over the pain of a sick body, a deteriorating mind, a rebellious spirit, or a dysfunctional relationship. The blessing is not that He gives us what we want but that He gives us Himself, especially in our painful places."-- Nancy Guthrie, One Year Book of Hope, p. 331

Friday, December 3, 2010

Jesus parenting

Jesus didn't have kids, but he did have disciples. Not everyone that is living life has kids, but everyone does have someone that is watching them. For me, it's not only my husband and son... but it's so much more. For me, today, this is particularly prompted by thoughts of my son, but I believe they can be applied to so much more. The more I think about it the more I feel like it applies to ME, but I am trying to instill it in my son.

Here it is,

In John 17 Jesus is praying. First, he prays to be glorified... (as should I)

“Father, the hour has come. Glorify your Son, that your Son may glorify you. 2 For you granted him authority over all people that he might give eternal life to all those you have given him. 3 Now this is eternal life: that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent. 4 I have brought you glory on earth by finishing the work you gave me to do. 5 And now, Father, glorify me in your presence with the glory I had with you before the world began.

Then Jesus prays for his disciples.. (as I pray for my son and those that I influence)

6 “I have revealed you to those whom you gave me out of the world. They were yours; you gave them to me and they have obeyed your word. 7 Now they know that everything you have given me comes from you. 8 For I gave them the words you gave me and they accepted them. They knew with certainty that I came from you, and they believed that you sent me. 9 I pray for them. I am not praying for the world, but for those you have given me, for they are yours. 10 All I have is yours, and all you have is mine. And glory has come to me through them. 11 I will remain in the world no longer, but they are still in the world, and I am coming to you. Holy Father, protect them by the power of your name, the name you gave me, so that they may be one as we are one. 12 While I was with them, I protected them and kept them safe by that name you gave me. None has been lost except the one doomed to destruction so that Scripture would be fulfilled.

13 “I am coming to you now, but I say these things while I am still in the world, so that they may have the full measure of my joy within them. 14 I have given them your word and the world has hated them, for they are not of the world any more than I am of the world. 15 My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one. 16 They are not of the world, even as I am not of it. 17 Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth. 18 As you sent me into the world, I have sent them into the world. 19 For them I sanctify myself, that they too may be truly sanctified.

This too, is my prayer...

And, thank you, Jesus, for loving us enough to pray to your Father for us!

And further in the chapter Jesus prays for all believers...(which I should also do)

20 “My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, 21that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me. 22 I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one— 23 I in them and you in me—so that they may be brought to complete unity. Then the world will know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.

24 “Father, I want those you have given me to be with me where I am, and to see my glory, the glory you have given me because you loved me before the creation of the world.

25 “Righteous Father, though the world does not know you, I know you, and they know that you have sent me. 26 I have made you known to them, and will continue to make you known in order that the love you have for me may be in them and that I myself may be in them.”

Good stuff. God is good. He leads me. I pray that I stay in a place of surrender to Him. Today, I surrender myself to you, Jesus. I am yours.

Today, what are you praying for? Will you surrender?