Selah~Day Eleven

Everyone has a story and they don’t always begin with “Once upon a time” and end with “Happily ever after!” As a former English teacher, I love  to read stories, I love to tell stories, and I love to hear stories. When I accepted the call to ministry over 6 years ago, I never imagined the stories that would be shared with me from outside the pages of a book. Every day is a new day and a new opportunity to hear someone’s story. Every story is different too. The “chapters” of people’s lives are filled with laughter, loss, celebration, defeat, struggle, triumph, and the list goes on and on. Today, I pray that I am more aware of the fact that every one has a story. Lord, help me be sensitive to the needs of others and perceptive of their story. I find it rather ironic that I work at CROSSROADS church. I recently read several definitions of the word: Crossroads. One definition read, “a place where two things intersect and share their story there.” I love that definition.

My 28 Thanks:

1. Everyone has a story to tell.

2. I have a story to tell.

3. People trust me with their story.

4. I obeyed God’s will and accepted the call to ministry over 6 years ago.

5. Every grammar and writing class that I ever had to take in school. It makes writing easy today.

6. God knows our stories, every line.

7. I minister at Crossroads Church.

8. The name of my church.

9. The worship in staff chapel was awesome today.

10. We started a new teaching on the power of teams.

11. I get to serve on several teams.

12. Teamwork makes the dreamwork.

13. Pastor Ted blessed me with a Charleston’s giftcard for submitting the winning slogan for an ad campaign. (After a brainstorming session, we ended up not using my slogan because we came up with an even better one. But, I still won out of the original submissions-just had to clarify.)

14. My friend shared some awesome news today about her future. After fasting and praying, the Lord really revealed direction to her.

15. She gets to share those details with me at the end of the month. I can’t wait.

16. My friend, Danielle, was super pumped about her sermon tonight for our Impact Young Adults team. A message entitled purity vs. virginity. It was going to make an Impact!

17. Alysha made Judah his very own ID badge to wear when he comes to the church. He felt so so so special.

18. Collaboration with Charlie-the graphic genius-he finalized all my summer series banners.

19. Worked with a new t-shirt company today. Our summer series and camp shirts are going to be OFF THE RAILS!

20. The twins got to go home today and see their mom and dad. They were starting to miss them badly!

21. My friend Debby is feeling better after a horrible sinus infection.

22. The trim work in my home is complete. Painting starts tomorrow.

23. We ate dinner outside tonight.

24. My friend, Pam, is going to do an amazing Paint piece for our Sunday AM service. She is so talented.

25. Today is the birthday of an old-school friend, Jahni Tapley! We were college roommates. She was going to be the English teacher and I was going to be the Lawyer. I became the English Teacher and she is now a lawyer. She is such a fun girl…Happy Birthday Jahni Suzanne Tapley.

26. Double Dip Turtle Fudge Sundae from braums…enough said.

27. God worked out another challenging situation today. It wasn’t a challenge after all.

28. Judah ate black beans and grilled chicken tonight. For this yogurt loving kid, huge success!

Selah~Day Ten

When I got home from work today, Judah and his 4 cousins (all under the age of 4) were playing in mom-moms soon to be garden. They were covered in dirt. Soon after I got home, I turned from working mom to referee. Even though all five kids were participating in throwing dirt at one another, the play soon escalated and was no longer fun. Finally, Judah caught a dirt ball in the eye. A loud wail came from his mouth and he took off running for me. As soon as he got into my arms, he began blaming the  guilty party. He continued to cry. I knew that he would be fine if I just disciplined the one who caused him pain. He wanted to know that I understood the pain he was going through and not only would I care for him, but also grant him the justice he felt he deserved. As soon as I told the other kids to stop throwing dirt and apologize to one another, Judah stopped crying. He ran back to the garden and resumed play.

Wow! I am learning so much about myself and my relationship with God from the behaviors of my 3 year old. How often have I felt wrongly hurt by someone else  and wanted God to bring justice on the party who caused me the pain?

After 33 years of life, I have grown to realize that sometimes people may not agree with me or even like me. But, I still have a rather HOLY DISCONTENT when anyone questions my character. Having Godly character or integrity has always been incredibly important to me. As a teenager, I remember making decisions based on whether or not it would damage my character. I didn’t want to bring harm to my Ellison name. Not only would I hurt my character (name), but also negatively affect my entire family. To me, my character is priceless. Why would I ever sell it for such a cheap price?

Recently, I encountered a situation where I felt that some individuals were questioning my character. Although they were completely mislead and trying to cause division, the Lord gave me grace to lead through the discussion with love. However, when I got in the car to head home, my flesh wanted justice to be served. I wanted God to go forth on my behalf and speak to them in a burning bush experience. I wanted Him to tell them how wrong they were and that they needed to come back to me and apologize. (I am laughing at myself as I type this). Like Judah, I wanted God, my Father, to deliver me the justice that I thought I deserved.

The Youversion verse for today is Colossians 3:12 NIRV, “You are God’s chosen people. You are holy and dearly loved. So put on tender mercy and kindness as if they were your clothes. Don’t be proud. Be gentle and patient.” After reading this, I quickly realized that I didn’t need justiication in this situation because He knows my heart, He knows my thoughts, He knows my ways. And, I know the truth and the knowleadge of the truth sets me free. I just need to clothe myself, “put on,” mercy and kindness and cover that situation in love. Then, I can walk forward knowing that He knows me. I find rest in that!

For the other party, I pray God mends every hurt, heals scars of rejections, brings restoration, and blesses them to the fullest. I hope I have another opportunity to minister kindness, mercy, and love to them.

My 28 Thanks:

1. I can actually clothe myself in mercy and kindness each day.

2. I am one of God’s chosen people.

3. I am dearly loved.

4. Character is important to me.

5. I do my best to walk in love with other people even when I feel wronged.

6. God teaches me to pray for those who hurt me.

7. Judah teaches me things everyday.

8. I am still learning.

9. My brother-in-law, Eric, is doing well after an emergency apendectomy today.

10. We are able to help watch his twin 3 year old boys while he and Laci are at the hospital.

11. Judah had a blast playing with his cousins all day today.

12. The mud, grass, gravel, and film in the bath water tonight proved that it was a good day.

13. Got to have lunch with my friend, Angela. She is always a joy to be around.

14. Gary Jones and our outreach team at Crossroads have such a sweet heart for people.

15. Found puppets for our summer series, I think:)

16. Talked to two people today who have a call for Kids Ministry on their life and are stepping out to fulfill that calling.

17. The fire department started fill the boot today for MDA. So thankful for organizations committed to helping people and research to find cures.

18. Dustin was able to update my Mac today. It is running so much better.

19. Alysha said she would help out in our Rainbows class while my lead teacher is out for surgery.

20. I started recruitment for our summer sports camp today. Within 5 minutes, 10 people responded to my email wanting to help.

21. Judah asked me for, “snuggle mommy time.”

22. He loves when I wrap him up really tight in a bath robe and we pretend that he is a different character-superhero, king, or  bible character.

23. Tonight, my nephew Ethan told me, “I love God.”

24. My friend, Amy, always brings wise counsel into my life. Very thankful for her sweet, wise spirit. She sends me scriptures all the time as an encouragement.

25. Pastor Ted gave me a good tip today when dealing with a situation that seems like conflict.

26. Found solutions to a few problems today.

27. I can see where God is working some things out on my behalf.

28. He goes before me, I need only to be still.

 

 

Selah~Day Nine

Today has been a long, GREAT day. I am sitting on my bed right now, with my Mac opened on my lap, listening to You Know Me by  Steffany Frizzell. After a full day of ministry, it takes me a while to wind down. Although tired, I am pretty amped. The lines in this song go like this, “You have been and You will be. You have seen and You will see…You know when I rise and when I fall. When I come or go, you see it all. You hung the stars and you moved the sea…still, you know me.” If those words didn’t just capture your heart, I encourage you to read them again.  The Creator of the Universe, the Maker of Mankind, the Was, the Is, and the One to Come…KNOWS ME. HE KNOWS ME. HE KNOWS ME. He hung the stars and He moved the sea and He knows me. He has memorized me. He knows every detail of my life.

My God is into details. He knows every part of me and He still loves me.

My 28 Thanks:

1. The Creator of all life knows me!

2. He is concerned about the details of my life.

3. He still loves me.

4. I love Him more each day.

5. My honey was off from the fire station today. Ministry with him by my side is awesome!

6. Judah was excited to go to church and wanted to show his “mends” his new shoes.

7. I love the way Judah says, “Friends.” He calls them his “Mends.” I could listen to that little boy talk all the time.

8. Wait, I do listen to Judah talk all the time. I love that!

9. We made it to church early today.

10. Two new, sweet ladies joined our check-in team. They started training today.

11. Pastor Ted’s weekly Sunday morning text to the pastoral team. He always offers encouragement, excitement, and enthusiasm for the day. He anticipates every service.

12. My mother-in-law bought all the tickets for the Mother/Daughter banquet. Huge help considering that I am never able to go downstairs to purchase them.

13. Zach, one of my core leaders, went to big church today. I am glad he got a break and that he missed us! He had fun at his Senior Prom last night.

14. Teenagers who love Jesus and can have fun at prom without participating in what the World deems as “fun.” Way to stand out from the crowd!

15. The book of PSALM.

16. Before I was even formed in my Mother’s Womb…HE KNEW ME!

17. Judah told me that the mailbox had a bow and arrow in it this morning. Although that isn’t completely accurate, I am so glad he is learning in Kids church!

18. Judah showed me how to fold my hands when I pray. He gave me step-by-step instructions.

19. 5 kids gave their heart to the Lord today in KidMotion.

20. Jose loved kids church so much that he asked to sign up to help for both the Sunday AM and Wednesday team. He was moved at the altar while praying for two boys today.

21. April joined our KidMotion team today! She was amazing during our small group time. Excited to get her plugged in.

22. Lorry Gail is still excited about our summer series, Off the Rails. Her role in this series has reignited a dream to write children’s curriculum. She started her new curriculum outline today.

23. The boys and girls loved their small group applications today. They got to build towers of idol worship, then knock them down like King Josiah. It was a great application and they loved it.

24. We finished our Power Up series today. It was super successful.

25. Stella is always willing to fill in the gap when there is a need. And, she is rock solid in teaching. She is an awesome leader. She really helped make a situation successful today.

26. My RE:MO student leadership team met today. We discussed freedom that comes from submitting to authority. It was a good lesson. I am still thinking about it. I am sure it will be talked about in a future blog:)

27. Got to be a friendly face to a new family at our church today. I love being a part of growing the kingdom of God.

28. Ended the night with a great meeting of Ranger leaders. The future is bright.

 

 

Selah~Day Eight

Yesterday, I read the scripture from 2 Timothy 4:7, “I have fought the good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith.” After reading it, I was reminded of a writing assignment my Sophomore English Professor, Shirley Harrod, gave to my class. At first, I thought her  assignment was rather morbid. Nevertheless, I have completed 100s of writing assignments throughout my years and this one stands out above the rest.

She told the class to go to a cemetery and do a chalk rubbing of a tombstone. Then, she told us to creatively write about that person’s life. Who were they in life? What did they do? What made them life and cry? What were their hopes and dreams? Did they fulfill what they set out to accomplish?

That night, I went to the local cemetery, which ironically was in walking distance to my college dorm room. Within minutes, I came across a tombstone with the name, Elizabeth Ready. Immediately, I knew she was my writing subject. I chalk rubbed her name on my large piece of paper and headed back to my dorm room. On my walk back, I thought about her name, Ready. What a great name. In my writings, she would become a visionary, a woman of adventure, a dreamer who wasn’t afraid to take risks. Through celebrations and accomplishments or changes and difficulties, my Elizabeth Ready would be ready! She was ready to lead, ready to motivate, ready to risk, ready to laugh, and ready to cry. But, above all, she was ready to finish.

I am sure we are all familiar with the phrase, “It doesn’t matter how you start the race, but rather how you finish.” In my writings, Elizabeth Ready was concerned with how she finished the race. Even though I never met this person, in my story, she finished that which was placed before her and she finished well!

Tomorrow in KidMotion, I am talking about perseverance-finishing the race well. My normal habit is to meditate and “simmer” over the main points I want to make for several days before actually presenting them to my kids. So, I have thought a lot about finishing well the last few days.

When I am tempted to be sidetracked or distracted with challenges in my life, I must make time to get away with the Lord. In this time, He reminds me that my problems, my challenges, my concerns, are FLEETING! They will be over soon. However, my obedience to do His will is ETERNAL. So, there is nothing more important than doing what God has told me to do.

When I stand before Jesus, all the challenges, trials, tests, and distractions will be forgotten. But, what will remain is a question-Did you do what I asked you to do, or did you get distracted by “life” and stop running your race?

Like the Apostle Paul and my fictitious character, Elizabeth Ready, I want to finish the race with joy and with VICTORY!

Lord~help me to maintain my focus on the prize that is at the end of the race. Help me not to be distracted by the cares and challenges of this life, but rather keep my focus on you! One day, I will stand before you and I want to be READY to answer your question with boldness, confidence, and joy unspeakable.

My 28 Thanks:

1. I am a winner.

2. I am not a loser.

3. I don’t surrender when life presents challenges and difficulties.

4. I am determined.

5. The Holy Spirit reminded me of a really cool writing assignment from over 10 years ago.

6. Professors, like Shirley Harrod, who believed in me. I still have every paper I wrote for her classes. She always inspired me and wrote great things about my writing.

7. I was able to go to college and earn a degree.

8. I no longer owe any money for school. Paid it off a few months ago!

9. My parents celebrated their wedding anniversary today.

10. My flowers are still alive after being hit by this weird, windy, cold blast.

11. Judah and I had a very relaxing morning together.

12. I got a great deal on new tennis shoes for Judah.

13. He loved his new shoes and wore them out of the store.

14. I got a pair of shoes too.

15. They are cute and comfortable.

16. My in-laws were able to get a lot accomplished around their house today. Many items on their to-do list are now done.

17. Judah and I made a surprise visit to our friends garage sale.

18. We visited for over 2 hours.

19. Judah loved jumping on the trampoline with friends.

20. A friend sent me a great article about parenting stresses. It was from Proverbs 31 woman. It was really encouraging and a good read.

21. Judah took a 3 hour nap today.

22. I was able to memorize my teaching script for KidMotion tomorrow.

23. Lorry Gail is through lesson 4 of our summer series puppet sketches. She loves how the writing is going.

24. I was able to help a lady who is inquiring about our church. After our conversation, she is coming to church tomorrow.

25. Luci is home from the hospital and doing better.

26. My laundry is almost complete!

27. Judah obeyed me in the crowded store when I told him to stay right by me.

28. My sister, Haley, won several awards last night at her college communications department banquet and one award included a scholarship. Go Haley Bee…proud sis moment!

 

Selah~Day Seven

Judah loves Orange Leaf. It is a frozen yogurt place in South OKC. Judah knows the direction to Orange Leaf and always comments when we get close. He would love it if we went there everyday! But, we keep it as a special treat. Orange Leaf helped us potty train Judah.

Because of his love for Orange Leaf frozen yogurt, I was shocked today when I asked Judah if he would rather have the skittles that were right in front of him or wait and get Orange Leaf later, and Judah quickly chose skittles. Gary and I both looked at each other in disbelief. Then, I realized how often we will chose that which gives us instant gratification instead of waiting for what is special to us.

Judah chose skittles not because he loves them more than Orange Leaf, but rather he wanted something sweet and he wanted it right then. Ironically, Judah ate 3 skittles and then told me he didn’t want anymore because they were, “Yucky!”

How often have we settled for less than God’s best for us only to realize that what we settled for is “Yucky?” If only we could learn to wait and be patient for that special prize that He has for us in His timing, we would divert from so many “yuckiness” in our lives.

This analogy can apply to so many things, like relationships, jobs, purchases, food selections, degree plans,  and so much more. I am going to search my heart and see where I might be settling for instant gratification instead of waiting for His perfect timing and His perfect will and His perfect prize. I want to make sure that I chose Orange Leaf instead of skittles. Where are you in your choices, Orange Leaf or Skittles?

My List of 28 Thanks:

1. That I realize I need to wait on the Lord.

2. That He has a perfect prize for me.

3. That He wants what is best for my life.

4. His plan is worth the wait.

5. God forgives me for choosing and tasting “Yucky.”

6. That patience can be learned.

7. Judah doesn’t like skittles. There is hope for his sweet tooth:)

8. Judah doesn’t like pop. He says it is, “hot!”

9. Judah would rather drink water.

10. I got to eat lunch at the Stuffed Olive today.

11. I got to eat with Gary and Judah.

12. Judah was fascinated with their “Christmas Light” decorations. His amazement with the lights made me laugh.

13. Judah and I played trains and T-Rex today. I was T-Rex and attacked the train. We had fun.

14. Our play made Judah belly laugh!

15. They are almost done with the trim in our new home.

16. Our fire place mantel looks amazing.

17. Judah and I took a mini walk down into the woods.

18. Gary is my best friend.

19. While playing trains today, Judah looked at me and said, “I bove you, mommy!”

20. I got to watch a romantic comedy today.

21. Rick Renner Sparkling Gem devotions.

22. Grilled steak and Sweet Potatoes for dinner.

23. Judah ate a sweet potato tonight! This is a miracle. His diet mostly consists of peach yogurt and strawberry milk.

24. Kelly and Sam Sweeten are okay after being involved in a head on collision tonight.

25. Our church family responds to needs quickly.

26. Our storm shelter is nicely decorated with side walk chalk courtesy of artsists, Mommy and Judah. Judah loves for me to draw fire trucks and doesn’t care that they can’t be identified as such.

27. My new lotion from Bath and Body works, Velvet Tuberose, smells amazing!

28. Thankful for my new friend, Danielle, who bought me the lotion for my birthday. It is her favorite fragrance and she wanted to share it with me. She is so thoughtful.

Selah~Day Six

John 21:2-7 reads,  Several of the disciples were there—Simon Peter, Thomas (nicknamed the Twin), Nathanael from Cana in Galilee, the sons of Zebedee, and two other disciples. Simon Peter said, “I’m going fishing.” “We’ll come, too,” they all said. So they went out in the boat, but they caught nothing all night. At dawn Jesus was standing on the beach, but the disciples couldn’t see who he was. He called out, “Fellows, have you caught any fish?” “No,” they replied. Then he said, “Throw out your net on the right-hand side of the boat, and you’ll get some!” So they did, and they couldn’t haul in the net because there were so many fish in it.

 I love this passage of scripture for many reasons. First, this passage is a perfect example to illustrate change that sometimes must occur in ministry as we further the call to be “Fishers of men.” The approach or “the bait” changes. But, the purpose  to fish remains the same.
Although it seems from this passage that Peter was looking for a relaxing past time for this particular evening, he was a great fisherman. He knew how to “reel” in a fish or two or hundreds. But, it also seems that he was comfortable in his usual fishing strategies. When a simple idea was presented to Peter, “Throw out your net on the right-hand side of the boat, and you’ll get some,” I wonder what he initially thought. Did he think to himself, “Who is this guy, doesn’t he know that I am an expert in this field?” Or, did he think, “Is this guy trying to move in on my fishing turf?”  Based on scripture, Peter didn’t think at all. He just obeyed right away. Because of his obedience, he was greatly rewarded.
When the Lord speaks to you, we must respond right away. We can’t allow our own opinion, comfort zone, and selfish nature get in the way of our reward! The goal is to catch fish, who cares what bait we use to accomplish it!
 I also love this passage because it shows that Jesus is concerned about our daily affairs. What an awesome, intimate relationship he had with his Disciples. He called them FRIENDS. He ate with them, walked with them, talked with them, prayed with them, and helped them in their work! Oh Man~I want to experience Jesus more and more in my daily activities. He is just waiting for the invitation.
Lord, I want you to be so real in every part of my life.

 

My List of 28 Thanks:

1. I am surrending more and more of my life to Jesus everyday.

2. I sense a stronger presence of God in my life.

3. When I give more of me to Him, He gives more of Himself to me!

4. I can experience Jesus in my daily activities.

5. He is near to me.

6. Even Jesus used a different tactic to catch fish.

7. Jesus is involved in my work.

8. Change is a part of my life. I am not afraid of it, I just like to plan for it:)

9. The heater in my car worked really well today. It was nice and toasty in a matter of minutes.

10. Judah got to stay home with Mom-Mom and his cousins today.

11. Judah loves staying home.

12. Three people told me today how much my “less than a week” old blog has ministered to them.

13. I usually don’t like the wind, but I watched it today while driving and the Lord spoke something special to me about it.

14. The Holy Spirit reminded me of a great illustration I could use for my message on Perseverance Sunday morning.

15. I actually got my entire Sunday message, as well as the small group activities, done today!

16. I got to see Pastor Marcia and Dorothy today. They are such sweet, caring women. They are very special to me.

17. Pastor Ted loves to joke! It is easy to work under the leadership of someone who loves to live life with laughter, fun, and authenticity.

18. My friend, Lorry Gail, and I had a great 3 hour work session for our Summer Series, Off the Rails. Our KidMotion and Training Wheels kids are going to love this series.

19. Lorry Gail is writing all the puppet sketches! She is talented and what a help this is to me.

20.  Puppets still work wonders with kids.

21. Homemade beef or deer stew (I don’t ask what the meat is anymore, I just eat)  for dinner and homemade cornbread. Yummy.

22.  Dustin was able to get my Sports Camp application on the website today. It was his day off!

23. Rony, our Creative Arts Pastor, is helping me make Kidz Ministry sound awesome. He cares about kids production too.

24. My husband loves his job. He is having a great day at work.

25. The guys at his job love us. They are all like brothers to Gary.

26. The copier never ran out of paper today and I used it a lot.

27. My hair is long enough now to wear it in a really cute, 80s style, side pony tail.

28. I can find little things to bring a smile to my face.

Selah~Day Five

Parenting is a tough job and it is one that I don’t want to mess up. I am so thankful that God chose me to be Judah’s mom. He is trusting me to raise, guide, protect, care for, and teach and train His most precious posession-mankind!

I never thought parenting would be that difficult until I became one. How many times did I say to myself, “those people just need to spank that child and make them behave!” Little did I know. Thank God for GRACE!

I had no idea how difficult it would be to discipline my own child. Because I have a teaching/education background, I love discipline, order, respect, control, routine. Surely my great skills in the classroom would make me great in the home! Judah is teaching me so many new things about myself. I actually hate having to discipline someone who I have the most wonderful relationship with. However, I know discipline is a sign of how much I do love him! It is a perfect example of how God disciplines me in LOVE.

Currently, I have to draw a line between what is “truly cute” and what needs to be addressed as inappropriate behavior. Judah makes me laugh though and sometimes when I should respond with punishment, I instead respond with laughter. Oh boy, I need some work. But, the first step in recovery is to accept responsibility! Ha Ha! I am working on it. And, Gary is helping me.

My List of 28 Thanks:

1.  Thank God for Grace.

2. Thank God for second, third, fourth… chances when I mess up.

3. Thank God that I am Judah’s mom.

4. For blessing me with parents who disciplined me in love.

5. For blessing my husband with parents who disciplined him in love.

6. For all the scriptures in the Word that help lead, guide, and direct parents in the way they should parent effectively.

7. For a great relationship with my son. He loves to spend time with me.

8. For wisdom and knowledge on how to best lead my family from the “wife’s role.”

9. I spoke with a lady named Janice today. She shared her personal story with me. I HAD NO IDEA she had a story. But, I am learning everyday…everyone has a story. Her story was one of loss, triumph, healing, miracles, restoration, etc…It was a great 20 minute conversation.

10. I recruited 5 people to kidz ministry today.

11. 3 of those people are coming to check out services this Sunday.

12. Jose asked me if he could come check out a KidMotion service on Sunday because he loves Wednesdays so much!

13. The boys had a great time at the 911 dispatch center.

14. The boys were obedient, respectful, and rode safely in the church vans.

15. My leaders had a great time too.

16. Mr. Jeff did a great job teaching the Law Enforcement Unit and organizing fun trips for our Discovery Rangers.

17. My 5th grade girls performed their puppet sketches tonight to the preschoolers.

18. The preschoolers loved it. They laughed and laughed and laughed. They wanted more.

19. I loved watching my girls sit down with the preschoolers and teach them how to use a puppet.

20. Gary brought me lunch today, so I could keep right on working.

21. I got a lot of work accomplished today.

22. Judah told me, “I saw  Mr. Bob do it, so I did it too.” I am thankful for Godly influences in my son’s life.

23. I got home before 10:00 p.m. tonight.

24. Rochelle covered a class for me again tonight. She is a gap filler. Always willing to jump in and help and she makes every situation fun! She has a gift.

25. The kids loved the opening activity game tonight.

26. I get to watch kids have fun.

27. Judah was so obedient in his class tonight. I was able to observe his class and he listened to the teacher’s instructions and did exactly what she said.

28. I got lots of kisses from Judah tonight while tucking him into bed.

Selah~Day Four

This morning I listened to a message by Pastor Steven Furtick entitled, “It’s Not a Competition, It’s a Calling!” It was a great message that spoke straight to my spirit. The death of contentment is comparison. Often, we compare ourselves to others. But, when we walk in His calling, we are not competing with someone else, but rather, we are designed to work together with them. We all have an important part to play in the body of Christ.

If we aren’t careful, we can see someone who has the “spotlight” more than we do as a threat to our purpose or as an excuse to undermine our role. We must keep in mind though that the inside “hidden” parts of our body make the outward “seen” parts of the body FUNCTION. Every role is important in the body of Christ.

I don’t have to prove myself to anyone because I have already been APPROVED by Him.

My list of 28:

1. I am approved by God.

2. God has called me and He equips those that He calls.

3. My calling becomes what I call it. I am called to be a wife, a mom, a friend, a mentor, a pastor to kids.

4. I don’t see the “behind the scenes” of the lives of others. So, why would I compare my “behind the scenes” with their highlight reel. Freedom!

5. I can learn so much from leaders in the Bible like Gideon.

6. God has blessed me with SO MANY faithful teammates who make kidz ministry function each week.

7.  I love staff chapel time with my team.

8. Staff meeting had lots of laughter today.

9. A sweet couple in the church, who I don’t know, left me a sweet card and giftcard to Outback Steak house. They just wanted to tell me thanks.

10. Gary and Aaron got all the audio equipment working today for our KidMotion/Training Wheels puppet recordings.

11. My preschool director and I had a great brainstorming session (both of us were driving in our separate cars). I think we have solved some serious issues due to GROWTH.

12. Growth is the will of God.

13. Gary, Judah, and I all got to eat lunch together today.

14. I was able to pray with my friend, Ava, before her hand surgery today.

15. Ava made it through her surgery just fine. She is at home resting now.

16. Judah had a blast driving his dump truck all around the yard.

17. Gary and I gave Judah his first in-home haircut tonight.

18. Judah’s haircut looks good. We didn’t mess up.

19. I accomplished more today at work than what I expected.

20. My mother-in-law grilled chicken tonight. It was yummy and healthy.

21.  Gary cut a really nice path down to the creek so Judah and I can continue to go down there and throw sticks into the water.

22. Today I found out that God worked a really sweet miracle in the lives of my friends, Matt and Deborah. So excited for them and their new future.

23. I got some cute pictures of Judah helping his Mom-Mom plant broccoli in the garden.

24. Judah had the cutest smile tonight. His entire face was covered in dirt.

25.  I had so much energy tonight that I helped Gary push mow the yard.

26.  The way I mow the yard brought laughter to faces of others! I am glad that I could add some comedy to their lives tonight.

27. My mom called and told me that she is coming to the City this weekend to see her grand boys!

28. Judah and I are snuggled up in bed together, sharing popcorn. He is  watching Special Agent Oso Bear and I am typing this blog.