Friday, April 29, 2011

Five Minute Friday: If I knew I could, I would…

{Right from the woman herself, LISA-JO!}

On Fridays around these parts we have a little tradition. We throw caution (editing, revising, and worrying) to the winds and just write. Without wondering if it’s just right or not.

For five minutes flat. You’re welcome to play along. The rules are easy.

  1. Write your heart out for five minutes and show us what you’ve got.
  2. Tell your readers you’re linking up here and invite them to play along.
  3. And most importantly, go visit, read, and encourage the fellow five-minuter who linked up right before you.{Pretty please turn off word verification for the day to make this easier!}

Easy peasy.

Oh and there’s always a little fun something-something in it for one five minute artist.

This week there’s a totally cute All Things Are Possible Water Bottle by DaySpring up for grabs.

OK, are you ready? Give me your best five minutes for the prompt:

 

 

If I Knew I Could, I Would…

UHS goodbye and getaway 035

Go:

I would, if I could, pour out this heart into every place/woman that needed to hear of His Great Love.  I would stand like a warrior over lies to say, ‘no! HE IS GREATER! TRUST HIM!’ and to do battle for them against that evil Enemy.

I would do it with words, of course, and I would most want to look into every pair of eyes that I could and say, ‘HE IS LIFE! DON’T SETTLE FOR ANYTHING LESS!’  I would call my sisters to the GREAT ADVENTURE and to know that this IS TRULY THE ONLY LIFE WORTH LIVING!!!!

I would love to write digging deep into Scripture and to weave the reality of His and our desires and what it can look like when they align and all that cannot be described in words that that makes our hearts do…our very selves too! 

I would join my sisters’ hands worldwide and run to fields (and oceans) in bare feet and raise up choruses high of His Great Love and just bask together in His Glory. 

I would hug the tired-ness the weariness and be a physical representation of the Spirit that is real—that wants to pick up and carry on eagles’ wings.

I would climb any platform allowed and declare boldly who and Whose we are women! I would plead from the deep to not spend this ONE LIFE on anything less than His Glory.

Stop.


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Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Can I really be Free?

“Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.”

 ~II Corinthians 3:17

"God's ultimate goal is maturing us into who he says we are, & then releasing us into the dreams he designed for us before the world began.. When we swim in the ocean of God's grace, we can't help but respond with playful abandon..We will burst into song at inappropriate times, dance, play, serve, fall on our knees in worship, give our lives away, & embrace each other. We'll sin less. We'll love more. We are free."

~TrueFaced

Perfectly Imperfect

photo credit

My friend, Shannon, who has been an amazing gift since she became my co-worker in ministry and very good friend posted the above quote on her facebook tonight (thanks Shan!). I. LOVE. IT!

We had our semi-annual Worldwide Day of Prayer for Campus Crusade for Christ this week.  It is always such a blessing and this year was the most powerful for me.  We heard about believers (our co-laborers) in countries where they are beaten and in exile for their faith and prayed fervently for them.  We saw a video from Japan and tears flowed from my eyes as a Japanese staff worker shared about the reminder that God has not forgotten her homeland…'Greater things are yet to come’ filled our ears as we saw the lost~ness amidst the devastation.  The unwavering faith and courage of so many of my brothers and sisters moved me to tears often.  It is an exceeding honor and privilege to pray hard for them!

But the day did not begin with a dive into intercession for the world.  It began with a devotion the Vice President of North America’s Campus Crusade, Steve, gave--sharing powerfully from his heart.  He called us all to not lose that simplicity of relationship with the Living God.  We are redeemed in Christ for relationship with God and to pursue Him above all else.

This filled my heart and in a following time of silent meditation, I asked the Lord to give me a picture of His desires for me.  He gave the picture of a field and me as a barefoot girl dancing and basking in the sun and just radiating JOY!

This quote is a perfect reminder of this picture. 

In these days, friends,

I FIGHT FOR JOY. 

I ASK TO KNOW THIS FREEDOM. 

I PLEAD FOR A VERY SENSITIVE SPIRIT TO KNOW WHAT BINDS ME AND TO RELEASE IT.

I WANT TO RUN AND DANCE IN THESE DAYS!.

Stress simply does not glorify Him.  I am prone to worry and stress and there’s A LOT going onWinking smile

BUT, I KNOW, EVEN IN THESE DAYS, EVEN AND ESPECIALLY HERE, HE WANTS TO LAVISH ME WITH LOVE AND FILL ME WITH JOY AND A GLORIOUS FREEDOM TO LIVE AND LOVE AND BE HIS!

SIMPLY HIS.  FOREVER AND EVER AND EVER AND EVER HIS!!!

Will you pray for me?  with me?  Will you purpose to be free?  I KNOW He wants it for you too.

The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is on me,
   because the LORD has anointed me
   to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
   to proclaim freedom for the captives
   and release from darkness for the prisoners”

~Isaiah 61:1

Linking with these who I LOVE! speaking words and life that FREES…

walkwithhimwednesdays2

Imperfect Prose[3]


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Monday, April 25, 2011

Our Story. God’s Story. The End is only the Beginning:)

{If you are new to Our Story, you can jump right in to this final installmentSmile 

No need to get caught up, but I would love for you to read a little more, especially the last installment: Our Story. God’s Story. Part 12.}

He is WORTHY of all of OUR LIVES!

“Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father.”

~John 14:12 (New International Version, ©2011)

I remember the season in my life when John 14:12 (above) first drew my attention.  I remember thinking: “What in the world would this world look like if we, the redeemed, got a hold of this truth and took Him at His word?”

I have been on that hunt ever since.

Faithful friends who have been journeying in Our Story, which I began to write late last Fall (do you believe?) and all who may be entering this story anew, we are indeed at the final installment.

And what a joy to KNOW, the END IS TRULY THE BEGINNING.

In fact, I have been delayed these weeks in rounding out our time back in Hungary last summer when the Lord clearly called us to return BECAUSE we have been called ahead to the living of End of Speakout, etc 048this story.  Called to take Him at His word and for the even greater things already happening in Hungary (please watch this video, if you haven’t) and to move full-steam-ahead towards His taking us to this harvest!

Now to the story:  Last time, I ended with sharing the night I talked with our Director in Hungary, Dan.  The Lord moved my heart to truly open to coming to live in Hungary long-term.  I shared this with my husband and we prayed very specifically that, in our time remaining, the Lord would make His will very clear to us.  We knew we needed it to be clear because it would be very hard to leave a life we love here in Florida and to move that much further from our families.

And He did.

Many things happened in that first week alone of Speakout English Camp.

First, in the registration line I see my beloved Anita and Nori that I shared so much about in previous parts of this story.  They had already met JJ two years before, but now met Susie.  They brought gifts for each and so very quickly entered our family as young aunties for our kids.

End of Speakout, etc 102End of Speakout, etc 104

As I spent time with them, I again entered  their story.  Muddled family.  No one to show them the way to live right—for God.  Our family has become their spiritual family more than anyone else.  Truly, we are the ones God sent to them to be Jesus to them.  It is not a matter of someone in their sphere simply taking action—there are no other true believers that they have known as long as us and we are the closest a healthy marriage has gotten to them.

I saw a vision of cracked, dry, thirsty ground.  Their lives. hearts. souls.  And the blessings we have known all of our lives as believers blessed with families who truly love God are water poured into that dry ground that heals and truly shows them a picture of Life as He means it to be!

When they interacted with our kids, it was like they were indeed our family.  And as much as we both love our families here and miss them so, we sensed the Lord asking us to live Abraham’s charge: because we are blessed, we bless the world. 

We also had many other meetings and interactions that were divine appointments.  Every day that Jared went out into the town or around the camp he would make this special connection with someone, like Adam.  Adam was older than student age and Jared met him down by the lake.  He shared the Gospel with him and Adam was very interested.  So interested that he traveled roundtrip (3 hrs. each way!) ONE evening to Keszthely from Budapest for the Hungarian outreach that happens in the middle of camp!

End of Speakout, etc 067Daily, Jared would go with JJ to JJ’s favorite place: the train station (pictures above).  They would watch the trains come in and find someone to share the Gospel with and JJ even started wanting to hand them the Four Laws Gospel Booklet that we use!  Our not quite three year-old seemed to be grasping the essence of what motivates us to travel long distances with little sleep in overnight flights. 

Jared and my greatest dream is to really live our lives as a loving family and through that living and loving, speak of Jesus to a broken world.  In Keszthely, we first experienced the coming together of our greatest joys in ministry as a couple in 2006, with our son in 2008 and with both of our amazing children in 2010.  And we truly do believe {as I love to say often} THE BEST IS YET TO COME!!!

I believe that the Lord gave me a promise early on in our confirmation to come back long-term to Hungary.  One night when I couldn’t sleep, He spoke to my heart, ‘If you are willing to uproot and trust Me more and come to this place where I am calling you, then I WILL OPEN EVERY DOOR AND MAKE THE WAY STRAIGHT BEFORE YOU.’

I hesitate to write this so definitively, but I can think of many Scriptures like Psalms 37: 5 ‘Commit your way to the Lord, trust in Him and HE WILL ACT’ that I have been directed to and meditating upon since we returned. These are confirmations of this paraphrased promise I heard that night.

So, we began to believe that we were so clearly called that to turn back, pretend like it didn’t happen, etc. we would be living in outright disobedience to God.  And who, in their ‘right’ mind, heart or soul would want to do that?  End of Speakout, etc 167

And for a cherry-on-the-top, my friend, Ingrid, and I met with Bea (Bay-ah) {middle in picture on right} who worked at the ice cream stand that featured Speakout English Camp with a special flavor and gave all participants discounts, and shared the Gospel with her and she prayed with us to receive Christ!  That was one of the sweetest times I have ever had and I hope to be able to continue meeting with Bea when we move back. 

Honestly, is this real?  Do I really get to live this life and cultivate a life and family that speaks of Jesus and call it my ‘job’?  Vocation, I like better.  We are pinching ourselves and say many times, truly, IF WE COULD PICK ANYTHING, ANYWHERE, IN THE WORLD TO DO—it would be this!! 

How’s that for a fulfilled, rich life?

Afterword:  When we returned to the States and began sharing our ‘news’ with everyone, well, it seems we were the most surprised that the Lord called us so definitively!  Our team, friends and family were all somehow prepared to hear this.  Everyone has been so supportive, but we do, especially, ask prayer for our close friends (like family here in Florida) and our family.  Their support has not wavered, but with the reality of our actual move looming closer and closer, it is hard for all of our hearts.  We are counting the costs—laying them before Him—and do, very much, covet your prayers.

Sharing with Jen’s awesome meme SOLI DEO GLORIA SISTERHOOD

SoloDeoGloriaSisterhood 

And with Laura’s Playdates with God:

playdateswGod


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happy tears…

Dad & Marie, Fall Retreat, etc 023

As our normally not prone to tearing up pastor did so several times during the sermon, yesterday, Easter Sunday, I found my own bubbling close to the surface.

Happy tears.

His were coming from the sheer reality of the goodness of God in the Redemption completed through a Savior Risen from the dead! And my own coming from that same well—that infinite and happy well that, once tapped, leads to the deepest of beautiful realities.  JOY!  LIFE!  PEACE!  THE WONDERS OF LOVE!  THE TRUST THAT, NO MATTER WHAT, THE END IS DECIDED…FOREVER!

The tears flowed more freely as several members of our church did cardboard billboard testimonies.  They came from the left and right of the sanctuary and first showed life before Christ on one side of the cardboard.  Things like, ‘frozen in fear’, ‘abused. divorced.’, ‘addicted to drugs and alcohol’, etc.  Then, they flipped over to the other side and this showed what it is to be of the Redeemed:  ‘Healed.’  ‘Happily married and in love with God and each other.’ ‘Full of faith, love, joy, peace’.  etc.

I thought this was one of the most beautiful things I had ever seen in church.  It stripped away so much of what distracts and muddles and confuses and lifted up Him—the main ‘thing’—His forever-altering-reality that draws from death to life.  sick to healed.  broken to whole.  discarded to redeemed. 

I will cry those happy tears any time…Oh Lord, help me not to forget and let joy be zapped by all that swims in this whirling superficial yet pretentious sphere of life here in this world.  I want to see You and dwell in what is secure forever.

Praise You.  Thank You.

  • For a Risen Savior—the HOPE for all Time found in Him!
  • For the fellowship of the redeemed
  • For happy tears that all who love Him and His Gospel share
  • For a spirit of trust blanketing me
  • For the Grace to want to know this above anxiety, fear, anger
  • For the faith you are calling us to exercise
  • For how this is a marathon call and not a sprint
  • For how You work it out to not be able to ‘rest’ in provision; only You
  • For seeds of doubt (unknowingly) placed by others—they draw us deeper into You and as a team together
  • For meeting Zsuzsi—a believer and Hungarian—who lives here!  ONLY YOU COULD HAVE BROUGHT US TOGETHER
    • for the chance to hear her hard but triumphant story
    • for how deeply we were encouraged by her
    • for how her story and her knowledge of Hungary continues to underscore it’s great need of You
    • for being able to encourage her by what God is doing there
    • for her perseverance in sharing her faith with her family—even though she was considered crazy, mentally ill, etc.
  • For THIS SONG!
    • For listening to it and watching it this morning on Youtube
    • For son getting a serious face seeing Jesus, bloody, on the cross—he is understanding
    • For daughter with blankie just at peace and sweet listening
    • COME AWAKE!!!  AMEN!!!  REALLY, THIS IS IT!!!
  • For this Flash Mob Dance from last Easter in Budapest, Hungary that continues to be amazing
    • For how it moves my heart—and plead that He would fill this land with a generation rising up in His Power
    • For how I know ‘Heroes' Square’ where it is filmed
    • For how that makes me happy to picture living in this city
  • For finding things to get excited about in the midst of all that’s coming
    • X-track overseas training—CAN’T WAIT!!
    • A family of missionaries—we love and waiting to receive us there
    • All of the ‘Jo reggelt’s in the morning, ‘Jo napot’s’ in the afternoon, and ‘Jo estet’s’ in the evening
    • Everything that will become home and life that I cannot imagine
  • FOR all who WORSHIP A RISEN SAVIOR!  THE BEST EVER AND FOREVER YET TO COME!

#1124-1155

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Saturday, April 23, 2011

Happy Easter! HE IS RISEN!!! HE IS RISEN INDEED!!!

 

Christ Jesus, Our Lord

is RISEN

TODAY!!

Is there ANYTHING both

now or forever

that could be better than

that??!!

 

Let this be the sweet song that rises from your heart this Easter and always and forever!

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Friday, April 22, 2011

Five Minute Friday: The Hard Love

It is a good day to look at ‘the Hard Love’

Taken straight from Lisa-Jo’s blog:

Want to take five minutes with me and see which ones bubble to the surface?

Let’s just write and not worry if it’s just right or not. Here’s how we do it:

1. Write for 5 minutes flat with no editing or tweaking.

2. Link back here (Lisa-Jo’s) and invite others to join in {you can grab the button code in my right side bar}

3. Go and tell the person who linked up before you what their words meant to you. Every writer longs to feel heard. {And if you love us, consider turning off word verification for the day to make it easier for folks to leave you some encouragement}

It’s a great way to exhale at the end of a beautiful week.

And it gives me a chance to give one of you a pack of my very own hot-off-the-presses first ever DaySpring greeting card – a beauty I leant some words to for mother’s day.

Motherhood should come with a cape…A really cute one with sparkles, don’t you think?
Happy Mother’s Day.

It’s based on my twitter tagline and is for sale over at DaySpring; you can pick ‘em up here and I’m told there are only 50 sets left.

The Hard Love…

It all leads back to you, doesn’t it?  When we weather the storms of love that pull our hearts every which way, You are the anchor.  The one who ‘is acquainted with sorrow and grief’.  You are the One who gives us strength to love when it’s hard.  You call us to know in the stuff and marrow of our very selves the strength of infinite love that bore the penalty of the whole world, for all time’s sin, brokenness, pain, all that is de-void of the good that is you.  So done, that all might have the possibility to become good again—be renewed, made new.

And so this journey in the hard love is one that leads us straight to you.  The times, I know, when I have felt so crumpled within and do not have the strength to take the next step to forgive the one who’s hurt me so—it is You that provide the only hope.  Only in You can we love when it is hard and so therefore this is the journey of our lives, because it is the journey, the way of living, in which we need You.  And as we need You, You fill us and shine the light of Your Glory before a watching world.  On this day of remembrance, I fix my whole self upon the cross where you absorbed it all…I rest all that remains broken, hard, hurt, struggling before You the Only Hope of heart and life to be truly healed.

Thank You for being the God who epitomizes loving when it’s hard.  Loving when nothing is given back, while we were Your enemies, You. Only You.

Amen


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Monday, April 18, 2011

The Only Life Worth Living

{For those of you new to here and me/us, we are following God’s call to move long-term to Hungary, Eastern Europe to work with high schools and the next generation there.  We are traveling raising support with our two small children…this is a testimony of praise to He who can be trusted with EVERYTHING! For more of our story, go here.}

I sit with a deep breath taken and joy released at the re-counting of it all.

Truly, is this real? 

That’s what I am asking myself.  This is an exquisite season.  Exquisitely beautiful.  Exquisitely Him.  Exquisite glorification of the One who uses the broken, foolish of the world and calls them to great things.  To move mountains in the Power of His Name and the faith applied to the seeming impossible way the set apart ones are called to walk.

It is my deepest prayer as I have been distant from this blog home and called away to the living of the story He is writing over our lives, that ALL WHO LINGER HERE BE BLESSED WITH A TOUCH OF HIM.

I am exceedingly humbled to be walking a way only He can make and to encourage, you, reader that NOTHING is impossible with Him. 

Delight yourself in the Lord and He WILL GIVE YOU the desires of YOUR Heart.’  ~ Psalms 37:4

This is not ‘health and wealth gospel’, but learning to love what He loves and seeing it come to pass before your eyes and all the things added to you as you seek His kingdom FIRST.

If I never wrote another post on here, I would want to express this: 

Don’t settle for any shallow less-than-all-of-you given to Him, but fight for the ONLY LIFE WORTH LIVING…NOTHING-HELD-BACK—all-of-you surrendered to HE WHO IS WORTHY OF ALL OF OUR LIVES! 

I am praying this touches your heart.  I have stumbled much in this life.  I have certainly lived less and Grace is real, but once I tasted from that fountain of living water and knew it in the deepest places, all else paled in comparison in the light of He who is Life.  At times, the fire has been the faintest of embers, but by ‘the Spirit of Him WHO RAISED CHRIST JESUS FROM THE DEAD DWELLING IN ME’ I have been ‘MORE THAN A CONQUEROR’ over the complacency, miry, murky clay that would dull all and render me useless in this ONE LIFE.

LIVE.  TRULY LIVE.  LIVE FOR HIM—THE ONLY WAY TO TRULY LIVE.  ALL TO JESUS.  ALL FOR THIS ONLY WORTHY ONE’S GLORY.  BEGIN THE SONG OF ETERNITY WITH YOUR LIFE’S SONG:

“Worthy is the Lamb, who was slain,
to receive power and wealth and wisdom and strength
and honor and glory and praise!”

~Revelations 5:12

Counting {just a bit} of His unending gifts:

  • THE JOURNEY!
  • YOU!
  • Calling us to be Yours in this world
  • Orchestrating the affairs of our lives to lead us to this point
  • Preparing us all of our lives for what lays before us
  • THE CHANCE TO SHARE WITH OTHERS!
  • The priceless encouragers
  • How You are answering, blessing, and leading us
  • My mother-in-law to say, ‘IF I had doubts that you were called to be long-term missionaries in Hungary, I DON’T NOW.’ for seeing how You are providing
  • ALL THE TIME—creating something out of nothing
  • The amazing Body of Christ
  • The chance to meet supporters I hadn’t met!!! though they’ve been active partners in the ministry
  • What it is to share You and Your heart for the world!
  • The PRIVILEGE of fellowship with so many in different churches, places, who love You and Your Gospel
  • MELTING MY UN-GENEROUS SPIRIT—we can NEVER out-give YOU!
  • All of the little things related to our kids:
    • so adaptable—loving on all wherever we go
    • His strength upholding their little frames
    • busting out giggles in the back of the van—during many miles on the road
    • baby girl…gibbering and gabbering with the best of them!
    • loving to be held and look at all of the pictures on the wall
    • identifying circles and rectangles (her, baby girl) through thermostats
    • buddy boy—wiggling into hearts
    • spontaneous ‘I love you’s’ to family and friends
    • always having a hug!
    • tears when he couldn’t find me…multiple times
    • Easter egg hunts at MiMi and PopPop’s
    • JUNTOS!!! together as sweet in this family
  • Auntie Debbie
  • seeing her after two years!
  • how she brings a touch of mama—so, so thoughtful
  • talks with Robin—precious mentoring and encouragement
  • a husband who lets me sleep in when possible;)
  • HE MAKES A WAY!!!!
  • that this is the tiniest glimpse of the things to thank Him for…
  • THE BEST always and ever YET TO COME!!!

#1088-1123

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and Jen’s wonderful Tuesday meme, Soli Deo Gloria Sisterhood

Finding Heaven


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Monday, April 11, 2011

thank you my {blog} friends and all friends

I have been so blessed by, you, my wonderful blog friends, as we have been travelling now for 1.5 weeks.  Your comments reminding me that we are on your hearts and you are praying for us, have meant so very much.

Our time has been wonderfully laden with Spirit-filled interactions and moments as we are privileged to continue to share together the heart, passion and calling of God upon our lives face-to-face with others.

The Lord is meeting us in powerful ways on multiple levels and while there is significant support to be raised, we walk forward in great confidence that our Great God will ‘supply all of our needs according to His riches in glory’.  And that we will soon receive our heart’s desire to be sent to the tremendous harvest amidst the move of God in Hungary.

I am sorry that I have gotten to read others’ blogs so little and look forward to the chance to sit and hear from you and what God is doing in YOUR lives.  It will be a little while, yet, and, truth be told, I don’t know how much I will be able to write or read in these next couple months of major transition—continued travel, packing and pitching and pawning;), more travel and tying up loose ends, etc. etc.

But, regardless, I am thankful for you my dear blog friends and trust that the Lord is giving YOU more of His own dear self—He is all we will ever need…the fountain of love unending.

Thank You my Great God and King:

  • for the community of love and support I feel so strongly here
  • for how on all sides of our lives You are blessing us richly through the encouragement of so many
  • that we get to walk a journey that involves hundreds, even thousands, of others through their prayers and financial support
  • miracles daily of You orchestrating our lives and those of others so that we can meet and journey together
  • YOU ARE AMAZING GOD!!!
  • the precious work of Your people that we were blessed to share with yesterday
  • neighbors who open homes and invite friends
  • a priceless encourager doing so much for us in the midst of her pain
  • the prayers of the saints and getting to pray with so many dear ones
  • interceding to the point of tears for a treasure of a woman
  • continuing to believe YOU for the day of restoration coming in her life
  • connections, sweet and dear through the passing of years—renewed because of this!
  • connections, new and real and full and blessing—coming through this journey
  • kids who are able to be loved on by grandparents while we are out
  • an amazingly, dear home to stay in…rich, rich blessing
  • the little lovies and their preciousness
    • baby girl’s favorite word ‘no’…too cute and too bad:/
    • buddy boy’s tears b/c he wanted to hold hands to pray and we weren’t
    • his sweet ‘touch’ love language
    • warming up so quickly
    • son talking to his cousin by a tree when he was sad
    • cousins playing with such joy in each other
    • two easily distracted children
    • troopers in travel!!
  • meeting up with twin and sister and nieces and nephews
  • just knowing how much we are loved!!
  • the missing real—because we love each other so
  • strength I don’t see for a lot of travel this week
  • all You are going to do in it!
  • again, could keep going, just started, really, but won’t make this list
  • the BEST for all of us EVER yet to come!

#1056-1087

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Wednesday, April 6, 2011

eyes fixed on you…

pricked and pierced
prodded and pulled
pushed and preyed
puddles of pain
the ruins remain.

words that cost
stuck like full-
juiced lemons open
upon tender wounds
unhealed.
unseen.
but I see them.

how can i forgive
that which renders
me worthless
with a single blow
of one called friend?

eyes fixed on you…
only One who knows
this rarest of
ways.

pricked and pierced
prodded and pulled
pushed and preyed
puddles of pain
perfection pummeled
lifeless remains.

hurts of millions
upon billions
as waterfalls
of sour wine
ooze in infinite
sting, and you…

absorb it all
in holy love
that defines all
redemptive and
true and rises
in glory.

eyes fixed on you…
the only
way to walk
in what is
deeper than
the hardening
pain.

step by step
I stumbling
shuffle and
baby-skinned
heart receive.

eyes fixed on you…
most fragile
yet strong
softened
resilience
I see.
eyes fixed on you…

AWA 4/6/2011
This poem was written for thehighcalling.org’s RANDOM ACT OF POETRY about forgiveness…
also sharing with Emily’s Thursday meme…for the broken, hurting fellow-journeyers:
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Monday, April 4, 2011

why do i ever doubt?

{The winner of last week’s giveaway, the book, “Half the Church”, is my blog friend (and ministry friend) Cherry@Pursuing Heart who I know will read and share it with many…bless you mentor, friend, sister}

It was in downright obstinacy and inner turmoil that I readied myself for this current trip.  Much to the dismay of my husband, I ranted and raved and just…oh dear, you get the point. 

I realize that a huge underlying element of all of this is the emotional stuff going on as we make such a big transition.  All of the reticence I know is there to the changes coming and I just want to…cry.  And I pray and think, ‘Lord, how could this be working together for my good (not to mention my family’s) when I am so clearly living less than Your best in my heart…the only place that really matters?’

I don’t have a very well thought-out answer except that anything that humbles me and rubs away the mystique I may have of being some kind of spiritual giant to be a ‘missionary’, is so very good and lays me bare in my utter need for Him to live this life.

And He does and makes me ‘more than a conqueror through HIM WHO LOVES (ME)’.  He loves me in spite of it all…really doesn’t see the ugly—only His dear Son and gives me a husband with these kind of eyes too.  I am the richest of women.

On top of it all, in the travelling, He gives us a wonderful place to stay where we are loved and able to connect with good friends who love Him. 

And as we walk this journey, He is giving us time to focus as a team on this powerful vision in the specific ministry He is calling us to. We have the opportunity to speak our hearts, His heart, in front of churches and small groups daily.  In so doing, we are filled with a greater love as we see His heart to reach the world multiplied into the lives of the hearers.

So, why do I ever doubt that He has the Best for me, even and especially when I don’t feel it?  He loves to be Strong in my weakness and so, if nothing else today, let me embrace that the deeper the weakness, the greater His strength.

Thank you Lord of love and life and all that is:

  • for Your unending patience with me!
  • for how You impart that through a husband who gives You hands and feet to reach me
  • for Your bigger, more beautiful, picture than I can imagine
  • for how You bless in the travel
  • for how You speak to my heart when I am away from home
  • for the incredible privilege of walking in this transition
  • for the incredible privilege of walking as a team with my husband and kids
  • for the indescribable joy of being able to cast the vision of what You are doing in Hungary
  • for how You keep it fresh in my heart—tears anew and afresh for the ‘harassed and helpless’
  • for enabling me to see what a blessing this journey together can be—the chance to focus on this call
  • for all of the little things
    • kids who win the hearts of all…so, so quickly
    • for how comfortable they are when they stay somewhere new
    • for hearts that open wide and draw others in
    • for family to love and play with
    • for cousins running, hugging, jumping
    • for baby girl’s bond with grandparents—though she’s never lived close to them
    • for son who attaches so quickly to new people
    • for his sense that home is where we are together
    • for ‘wow’ when he saw his new 13 year-old friend yesterday morning (hilarious…totally couldn’t even script that one)
    • for being called ‘famous’ because we’re missionaries (it made me laugh inside:)
  • for this amazing family where we are staying that blesses so
  • for how You walk with them and fill them and they pour it out
  • for unconditional love here
  • for Your constant provision
  • for a blessing of seeing the heart of someone who has blessed our ministry so much (financially)
  • for his pledge to give ‘exceeding immeasurably beyond’ that left us speechless
  • for ALL YOU ARE!!!!
  • MEETING US EVERY TIME!!!!!!
  • for the BEST ever YET TO COME!!!

#1026-1055

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and also, due to Jen’s urging (thank you friend), I am also letting this post be my contribution to the SDG Sisterhood this week {which means I will *try* to finish up ‘Our Story’ in the next week so that I can share it for next week’s link-up}

Finding Heaven


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Friday, April 1, 2011

Five Minute Friday: A trip & Few of My Favorite Things

I am gearing up for another trip…two and a half weeks…close to 3000 miles of driving, 4-5 different beds…oodles and oodles of love from us to others and others to us…new faces excited about what God is doing in this generation, particularly the heart He’s given us to cross an ocean and live as long as He has to amidst the people of Hungary and this entire area of the world.

I am stressed, tired, weary, struggling with all of it…have been gasping for air and vision to see only what is right here, the next thing, I need your prayers.  Desperately.  Pray His truth over me…naturally, it would be like this…I buck against all that shifts and cling for Home…but am missing all this gorgeous forest for the trees and the path cut right through it to a Heavenly City whose Builder and Maker is God.

In the midst of running way behind and packing to finish, my dear hubby, said I could take the deep breath to join Lisa-Jo and one of my absolute favorite meme’s Five Minute Friday:

Straight from The Gypsy Mama’s

But most of the time I can only snag five minutes here and there to just write. And I don’t have time to worry if  it’s just right or not.

Perfect for Fridays. Want to join me?

1. Write for only five minutes. Don’t edit. Don’t over think. Don’t stifle your creativity.
2. Link back here and invite others to join in.
3. Go leave some comment love for the five minuter
who linked up before you.

It’s invigorating; give it a try and see.

And in celebration of our family of five this week I’m giving away five of my favorite favorites from DaySpring’s Life to the Full Collection. Appropriate, no? With the new addition to our own Life Collection! (Michelle won the I Am Loved art from last week).

This week the scrumptious Life to the Full Pitcher and Platter are up for grabs. Oh how I love them both! And five of you who link up will too!

{Lisa-Jo’s got a brand new baby and two rambunctious boys, I have my hugest life transition(thus far)…no matter what, give yourself the treat to write for 5 sacred minutes!}

OK, are you ready? Give me your best five minutes for the prompt:

UHS goodbye and getaway 166UHS goodbye and getaway 168UHS goodbye and getaway 170

A few of my favorite things….

Home and what that means.

Home and the Grace to draw me back to the eyes of eternity.

Home and the love of others—husband and son, today in particular—to give me sweet love when I have been so stressed and hard.

Joy that is Home.  Anytime.  Anywhere.  Looking into eyes, creating love and life together amidst toys strewn, footballs kicked, questions asked, one another’s presence the most priceless of all.

Baby girl—tickling her and merry giggles that would melt any heart.  Son asking questions like ‘what’s impossible mommy?’ and getting to say that ‘that’s what people say CAN’T be done, but God can do it!’

Husband who can laugh at all this craziness and with such a sincere heart of faith to see God.  Listening to promptings and having the miraculous meet…like meeting in Florida a believer who lives and works in Hungary.  Another connection that can only be described as God that connects him with a Hungarian woman living here…there are not very many at all…

All that is coming…not my natural favorite…but a God who loves us and will prune us in the hardness to bring us into His arms and the only Home we’ll ever need.  This is where I rest and write and what makes all things, every moment, favorites.  That well of Grace…never, ever, ever running dry.

STOP.


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