Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Goals aren't ultimatums!

Let me say that again... Goals aren't ultimatums!  They are simply directions!  Thank you to Holley Gerth for that word today - it really helps me to put things into perspective.  She was honest with us today in her blog post (link):

"God-sized dreams aren't about being perfect.  Or getting what we want.  Orth things working out the way we planned.  You will feel fear.  You will fail at some point.  And you may eve find that you have to let a dream go."   BUT... "You will also become more courageous.  You will have victories you never thought possible.  And you will be filled up with what you really need, which is less of your and more of Jesus in your life."

In the day 2 of her book "Do what you can plan" she reminds us that goals are merely directions and they can be changed, they are not set in stone.  We have to listen to God and seek him with our goals and if they need to be adjusted or removed, God will show us the path we should go.

I am going to go back to my Goals list for the year and do some adjusting already - and that is OK!  I need to make sure I have the right priorities and will be praying as I go to make sure that the adjustments are what God wants me to do. 

I listened to Nicki's Two Minute Tuesday Clip today (link) and she asked a really good question that I want to unpack while I go over my goal list...

"What are the things you can adjust in your soul to be a better reflection of God?"

Wow - never really thought about it like that!  I am going to make another list of soul adjustments that I need to work on that go along with my Goals for 2013.

Counting my blessings

As I wrap up 2012 and reflect on all the gifts God has given me, I am gently reminded to be grateful...  Grateful for the good times and for the challenges.  Grateful for the lessons I learned and the new opportunities that await me.  Grateful for the big things that are awe inspiring... and the little things that seem so insignificant at times but are ultimately part of the bigger picture - it is in these little things that I catch a glimpse of God.  He is always there, right beside me and He never leaves me - and I can depend on Him.  I often look back on these and refer to them as "God Moments" - when the God of all creation revealed a small piece of himself to me.

Two years ago I read the book "One Thousand Gifts" by Ann Voskamp and have made attempts off and on to record all the gifts that God gives me... I have started my list more than once but this year I chose to move forward and just keep going on my list.

My mustard seed goal is to record at least one gift every day.

Here is a link to Ann Voskamp's Joy Dare Challenge - where she gives you daily prompts to record 3 gifts each day - so that at the end of the year you too will have a list of 1000 Gifts!  

January 1st - 3 gifts heard:  a kind word, an encouraging work from a friend, heather running always keeping us warm
January 2nd - a gift outside, inside, on a plate:  the grill, cookbooks full of yummy recipes, perfectly ripe avocados on my burger

Won't you join me today and give thanks to God for the gifts he has given you?


Tuesday, January 1, 2013

God-sized dreams

I love it when God drops exactly what you need right in your lap - He is so good that way!  He knows our inmost dreams and desires and He wants to bless us in ways we could only imagine.  

I recently started reading a blog by Holley Gerth and she has posted an invitation to open the door to a "God-sized dream" in 2013.  It started with this post: - (take a few minutes and read this short post)

I realized that I hate making New Year's Resolutions because... well, I fear failing... so why make them if you can never keep them?  I know I am not alone in this... we all start out with good intentions but then LIFE HAPPENS and you end up off track and discouraged.  Holley talks about the mental list we often make -  "When things are normal then I'll... (fill in the blank with 'exercise, eat better, have a longer quiet time.')"  but Life will NEVER BE NORMAL!  What are we waiting for?  There will never be a perfect time, we just need to move forward. 

She then offers an invitation to open the door to a God-sized dream in 2013 - "Dare to do what you can because you serve a God who can do more than you can even imagine."

What is a God-sized dream?  Sounds really big and intimidating right?  "God-sized dreams are not really about size at all - they are about what perfectly fits YOUR heart.  It's really another way of describing your purpose.  And we all have one."

So what are you waiting for?  Download her "Do What you Can Plan" ebook and join me on moving forward!

I will be sharing my journey and pursuit of my God-sized Dream in 2013... I can't wait to see what God has in store for both of us this year!

May the God of all creation bless you abundantly as you pursue Him!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

No Matter What

I love how the Lord always knows just what you need at any time in your life.  I am currently doing the bible study "Believing God" by Beth Moore.  It is all about faith!  I love to listen to our local christian music station and after starting this bible study, it seems that just about every song is about faith in one way or another.  Sometimes I get so busy that I just sing along and don't really pay attention to the words.  I started listening more intently to the words and received a sweet message from God through a song.  There will be times in our lives when we feel hopeless but we just need to remember that before a heartache can ever touch our lives, it has to go through God's hands...

No Matter What 
by Kerrie Roberts

I'm running back to your promises one more time, Lord that's all I can hold on to, I gotta say this has taken me by surprise, but nothing surprises you.  Before a heartache can ever touch my life, it has to go through Your hands, and even though I, I keep asking why, I keep asking why,

No matter what, I'm gonna love You, no matter what I'm gonna need You, I know that You can find a way to keep me from the pain but if not, if not, I'll trust you, no matter what, no matter what.

When I'm stuck in this nothing-ness by myself, I'm just sitting in silence, there's no way I can make it without Your help, I won't even try it.  I know You have Your reasons for everything, so I will keep believing, whatever I might be feeling, God you are my hope, and you'll be my strength,

No matter what, I'm gonna love You, no matter what I'm gonna need You, I know that You can find a way to keep me from the pain but if not, if not, I'll trust you, no matter what, no matter what.

Anything I don't have You can give it to me, but it's ok if You don't. I'm not here for those things, the touch of Your love is enough on it own.  No matter what I still love You and I'm gonna need You.

No matter what, I'm gonna love You, no matter what I'm gonna need You, I know that You can find a way to keep me from the pain but if not, if not, I'll trust you.  I know that You can find a way to keep me from the pain but if not, if not, I'll trust you, no matter what, no matter what, no matter what, no matter what.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Embrace the Journey

I grew up in a Christian home and accepted Christ at a very young age but it wasn’t until a few years ago that I truly understood what having a “personal relationship” with Christ was all about.  As I began to study the Bible more, God revealed Himself to me and I was amazed.  This fall I began the Bible study “Believing God” by Beth Moore.  God always knows what we need before we know we need it.  This Bible study is all about faith and believing that God can do what He says He can do.  On the 2nd week of the Bible study, just like the apostles in Matthew 17:5, I prayed and asked God to increase my faith.  My journey was about to take an unexpected turn.  Within a few hours, my husband called and told me he had been let go from his new job.  I said “Really God?  This is not what I had in mind!”  I immediately fell face down and prayed for God’s help and guidance as our family began this new chapter of our life.  I put my complete faith in God that He had our best interests at heart and since He had closed this door, He would open another door for my husband.  Although I could have been distraught and anxious about the situation, God gave me a peace about our circumstances.  I was reminded of many scriptures that reinforced my faith in God and his promises.

… I tell you the truth, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there’ and it will move.  Nothing will be impossible for you.  Mark 9:29

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to his purpose.  Romans 8:28

Everything is possible for him who believes.  Mark 9:23

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.  Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you.  You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart”.  Jeremiah 29:11-13

Without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to Him must believe that He exists and that He rewards those who earnestly seek Him.  Hebrews 11:6

Later that week my cousin invited me to a weekend retreat to deepen my relationship with God.  I had no idea what to expect and the weekend was just amazing.  It far exceeded my expectations.  I could truly feel God’s presence throughout the weekend!  God used the wonderful speakers to show me different things in my own life.  I realized I had been imposing my own perception of ‘how to walk with God’ onto others close to me.  Everyone’s relationship with God is different and one is not necessarily better than another’s.  God reminded me of miracles He had done in my life and my family’s lives which helped me to remember that He is in control.  I received several reminders to be grateful for what I have and all the blessings I have already received.  I felt God leading me to get more involved in my community and help others who are less fortunate.  God was stretching me and empowering me to do what He asked.  I normally get very nervous about speaking in front of groups of people, but God took away my fears and allowed me to share and be vulnerable with the group.  I have secretly wished that I could speak to groups of people and inspire and encourage them.  The icing on the cake was when God answered one of the prayers of my heart to find another godly woman who understands the journey of parenting a child with ADHD.

After the weekend, I re-entered the real world of life and continued to pray for my husband to find a job.  I prayed with my children on Tuesday morning before my husband left for his interview.  As we finished praying, my youngest son said “Mom, I don’t have any worries in my heart.”  His child like faith just melted my heart!  It was a wonderful reminder that we should cast all our worries onto the Lord and let Him take care of us (Phil 4:6, Matt 6:34).  God is so good.  My husband was offered the job and started his new job two days later.  God continues to guide us along our journey and we are so grateful for all He has done for us.

We are all on a journey... the journey of life. The road is different for everyone who travels it. The road can be straight and easy through the grassy plains of abundance. The road can be difficult with steep mountain passes of trials and challenges.  Sometimes it feels like it will never end, but there is a light up around the bend. That light is the light of the world... it is Jesus Christ. He is always watching over us and guiding us along our path. He gives us strength to make it through another day and when we are too weak to carry on, He carries us in his loving arms.

The Lord has seen me through some very difficult times. Several years ago when I was going through the steep mountain pass of helping my son with ADHD, I found a saying that gave me hope and has become my motto in life. It has three little words which inspire me to keep going... EMBRACE THE JOURNEY.

You can't change your journey.  You can't stop your journey or trade it for a different one.  You just have to embrace whatever comes your way. You have to remember that God will not give you anything you cannot handle without his help.

I can do everything through Him who gives me strength.  Phil 4:13