Thursday, May 24, 2007

...Not Against Flesh And Blood....

When we committed ourselves to full time ministry,we were told over and over that we will face Spiritual Warfare. The very first week that we got back from Little Rock, Dave told me that the situation I was facing was Spiritual Warfare. My response was, "I don't want to give Satan that much credit." I soon realized that it was, but not only that situation, but so many other things that were going on as well. I reminded myself of 1 John 4:4, ".....greater is HE who is in you, than he that is in the world." It kind of made me mad to think that I had the power of Christ in me, and I was allowing myself to be defeated. So I made a decision to stand strong and not give Satan the victory.
It seems when I make decisions like that, they last about a day. : ) How quickly I forget who is responsible for the battles we face every day. Sometimes it's easy to see it is the enemy, but other times it's not so obvious. Ephesians 6:12 says, "For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms." So basically, the enemy is responsible for every struggle we have. Some may argue it's the consequences of our own sin, but who is responsible for the temptation that got us into the sin in the first place? So I am reminded again that I am not giving the enemy enough credit for the struggles I face.
This week has brought on some frustrations that I did not credit to spiritual warfare until I read my devotional this morning. When I am dealing with close relationships, and I get hurt, I do not think of the enemy. I think the other person is the problem. I get frustrated, try to learn what I need to see, and move on. For the past few days I have felt hurt and frustrated over someone that is close to me. I am one to easily look over an offense and not take things personally, but when something is directed at me, I get hurt. I could never understand how someone can be so hurtful on purpose. In this situation, I see the pull the enemy had on the other person, but not myself. My desire is for all men to know Christ and to have freedom in him. When I see someone struggling, it pains me when I see how they can make it better.
For the past couple of days I have been praying for the Lord to show me what He wants me to see in all this. I read a devotion this morning titled, "Thorn in the Flesh". This part really stuck out to me:
"A thorn might even be something social. Perhaps it's a pesky relative, a neighbor, or a colleague at work. God regularly places people in my life to reduce the risk of my becoming deluded about how cool I think I am!
While we don't know exactly what Paul's thorn was, we can define a thorn in the flesh as trouble that enables God to work more effectively in us and through us. It is anything that keeps pride, arrogance, self-sufficiency, and immorality in check so that God can prove Himself strong in our weakness.
Don't just look at the thorn....look for the benefit beyond it. It might just be what God can use to unleash and activate the power of Christ in your life."
The thing that is so cool about this spiritual battle is that God is on our side. I see clearly now what Satan is trying to do, but God has a bigger agenda for me. I can so easily miss what God wants to teach me if I focus on my hurt. Another thing I read in my devotional this morning is this: "What are you going to do when someone hurts you? In order to navigate your way through relationships, you need a conviction about how you're going to respond when someone hurts you. Paul tells us in Ephesians 4, to forgive as Christ forgave...He forgave FREELY, He forgave QUICKLY and He forgave GENEROUSLY."
It is so easy to tip the scales in our minds and see someone else's flaws as bigger than ours, but what a disservice I do to myself when I do that. I must remember that God uses these situations as an opportunity to stretch me and grow me, and to see my own sin - and boy do I have a lot to work on. And when I tip the scales in my own mind, I will miss my sin. I see how these situations can make you think of yourself more highly than you ought because you have thoughts like, "I would never do that". With prideful thoughts like that, Satan has won a battle - and if he wins every battle he will eventually win the war!
My commitment is to forgive as Christ forgave me: Freely, Quickly, and Generously, and to search my own heart like David did in Psalm 139:23-24, and see how I have offended Him!
Thank you Lord for giving so Freely.....

Thursday, May 17, 2007


The past two days have felt a bit overwhelming. So much to do and accomplish, and my personality likes to start and finish things all on the same day. This process that we are on takes time, patience and perseverance. The Lord has been teaching me about discipline over the past few months, and now I see why. Discipline in the area of priorities has never been easy for me. However, as I look back, I see how far the Lord has already taken me, and I have not yet fully surrendered. Well, I plan to.

Yesterday the Lord reminded me of a poem that I had written over 8 years ago. When I wrote it, I had no idea that it was about my life. I was just doing my quiet time one morning and the first sentence came to mind. I thought, "HMMM, that's sounds like the beginning of a poem" (I'm not a poem writer). So I wrote the next line, and God gave me the next. It kept going back and forth until the end. It wasn't until several years later that I realized the purpose of that poem. The Lord reminded me of it one day when I was way in over my head with a new therapy program that we started with David. When I read it, I just cried, because it amazed me that the Lord gave that to me for ME. I had no idea it was for me. until that point, I had completely forgotten about it. I thought that was the end of it. Well, yesterday, he reminded me of it again. So today, I commit myself to Him!
........ And my God will supply ALL my needs according to HIS riches and glory!!!

Run The Race

There were two men who ran a race
One ran hard
The other fell on his face
The first ran fast looking straight ahead
No time to stop and go to bed
The second got distracted as he turned side to side
"I'm just smelling the flowers, still running a fast stride"
The first man got tired looking for a place to rest
But then he realized that would not be best
Instead he dropped, right to his knees
And prayed to his Father who knew all his needs
His Father gave him strength, as he knew he would
Then he got back to his feet and ran as fast as he could
The second man got tired looking for a place to rest
He thought a nap in the shade would be best
When he woke up, he was more sluggish than before
So then he decided he would nap some more
When he awoke again and got back on his feet
He tried to run hard, but he felt so weak
The first man was excited because he knew what was ahead
So despite the distractions, he kept running instead
He knew if he wanted to win the prize
He could not look back or to both sides
"I must persevere he kept telling himself"
As he prayed to his Father who kept renewing his health
The second man tried to figure what he was doing wrong
"I stop and I rest but I never feel strong"
He thought he could never make it to the man who was ahead
But that's okay he thought to himself, "I'll just enjoy where I'm at instead"
He began to lose track of what he was running for
And it seemed he wasn't even in a race anymore
As the first man ran he never looked back
"If I want to win that prize, I must stay on track"
As he ran further, he began to see a light
He was so overwhelmed it was such a beautiful sight
It made him run even faster and faster
Because he knew very soon he would see his master
The second man, was still off track
With great intentions to someday get back
But as he stayed he got further and further
enjoying more and more what the world had to offer
He prayed to his Father from day to day
But never realized that the track was the way
As the first man ran to the arms of his savior
He received a prize that would last forever
As the second man thought he was running too
He never realized he was distracted by the view
Deep in his heart he had a love for his savior
But from the looks of his run, it was all for his favor
The first man knew the goal of his race
It was to see his savior face to face
While the second man ran, right into disaster
The first one ran to hear the "well done" from his master

Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize?
Run in such a way to get the prize. Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training.
They do it to get a crown that will not last; but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.
1 Corinthians 9:24-25

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

All the couples of Campus Crusade that will be working with Family Life.
What a great group of people!
Here are the boys working on the chart that will track our support

Notice the little spot of red by the kickoff. We're on our way......

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

We're Official

Dave & I are officially commissioned as "Campus Crusade For Christ" staff. We just got back from 8 days of training in Orlando. WOW! What an awesome week we had. It was so humbling to be there with so many people who have a heart for The Great Commission. It was so encouraging to hear the hearts of other believers as they shared their testimonies of how the Lord called them to a specific ministry. We felt proud to be a part of Campus Crusade, as there of over 27,000 missionaries sharing their faith across the globe! It was also neat for us to actually write out our testimonies and share it with others. Just doing that has confirmed our call even further. We did not realize how much of our past was being used to form us into what God has made us today. And for that we praise Him!

Upon our return home, we found our boys healthy and well taken care of. BIG thanks to my wonderful in-laws for their sacrifice in caring for our children. They enjoyed their time with their grandparents. And my boys were excited to know that they were our very first supporters!!!

The Lord has been trying to prepare me for what we are about to face this next year, but I'm afraid I didn't take it as seriously as I should have. I must admit it feels quite overwhelming. There is so much to do and I desperately need to order my day. Thankfully I will be done with homeschool soon, so won't have the distraction of schoolwork. Please keep our family in your prayers as we try to figure out what our "New Normal" will be, and that we can quickly return to our "Old Normal". : ) Although I don't think that moving to a place we have never known can qualify as our old normal. So I guess it will be another "New Normal".

God has revealed Himself so much to us in the past six months, we are still overwhelmed. I just pray that we keep our focus on Him and that our lives are a reflection of His glory. He is good and His love endures forever!

To the one who is able to keep us from falling......