Friday, May 31, 2013

May Ministry Update

Wow, this month has been amazing.

Our whole family went on a trip to Washington D. C. and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves.

And the long car trip afforded me time to work on the nativity. I completed all of baby Jesus and I got quite a bit done on Mary.

It was good to have a vacation. I think one of the reasons I enjoyed it so much was that I made the decision not to worry about everything that I had left undone. You know what? That took so much stress off the whole trip. Now that I'm back home and the work is mounting, I'm trying to continue in that same attitude.

 It's good to work hard and do your best, but stress can be avoided. What if we chose not to get stressed over life. What if we did our best and then rested in what God is doing inside us? Wouldn't it be amazing?

Let's try it, shall we? Let's chose not to get stressed. Let's chose to enjoy the work. Let's chose to live today to the full.

Just Let It Go

Since the last time we talked, things have changed. I've spent a lot of time with God and catching my breath. You know what I found out? There's great peace that comes when you let go.

Let go of your plans, your wants, and your impossible wish list. I had worked myself into a frantic knot trying accomplish everything that I thought I needed to do. I was running around crazy, but not doing anything well.  That wasn't a to do list that motivated me to get things done, it was causing me nothing but worry. That should have been my first clue. When something in our life - a goal, list, or what have you - is causing us nothing but fear, it's probably not from God. It probably comes from our need to have things get done.

It's in letting go, there is real peace. Simply freeing yourself from the need to do it all is so freeing.

Sometimes the demands of ministry can become overwhelming if we hold ourselves to an impossible standard. Let go. Do all you can and then leave room for God to work. 

Friday, May 24, 2013

When You Don't Feel Like Doing It

Today I woke up with a ridiculous amount of work to do. Sticky notes and lists cluttered every area of available space. Work that had piled up lay scattered around the room. I was overwhelmed. I spent most of the morning running around trying frantically to put a dint in the ever growing pile of work.

Have you ever had times like that? You just wonder how you are ever going to make this deadline? Write that blog post? Finish that project? Complete the work you've been given?

Today I'm wondering how I can get this list done. The sad thing is, I don't feel like doing any of it. All I want to do is rest and shut out the world for a while. That's what I feel like doing. But that's not what I should be doing.

I've spent most of today worrying, complaining, and frantically trying to in my own strength complete my work. But this is only because I don' see the reality of what is.

What is the reality I'm missing? The fact that if I don't finish this project, the world won't end. The fact that no matter how I feel, I'm loved more than I ever know. The fact that neither bad or good feelings can make me any less a Child Of God. The fact that I don't have to do this work alone. God is in me to help me sort this out. The fact that life is beautiful and meant to be enjoyed not rushed through. The fact that this is just a passing time, it won't last forever.

No I don't have it all together. Yes I really didn't want to do some of this work today. But with God's help and by slowing down enough to realize what I have in Christ, my perspective changed. I'm not alone, and I'm not as stressed as when I started this post.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Check Mark

Jesus only had one thing on His to-do list. Seek and save the lost. when that was done, He put a check mark  by your name. "It is finished."

The work is complete. You are enough. Know that you will always have more to do here. There will always be more demands on your time and energy. There will always be something else to do. You can't possibly do it all.

But just because you can't do it all doesn't mean that you are a failure. It just means you're human. Know that in God's eyes, you are already enough. You are complete. You are treasured. You are loved. 

When the pressures of to-do lists, deadlines, meetings, and people press in you aren't a failure because of what you can't do. You are loved for who you are. Let go of unrealistic expectations and enjoy the reality of living in His finished perfect work. 

Friday, May 10, 2013

Messy Life & God's Grace

 As I write these words, I feel down. More emotionally than anything. I had taken on too much. Sadly I was in the middle of it when I realized this.

Yet even in the midst of tangled emotions, damaged egos, feeling overwhelmed, too much to-do, and so little time, God never leaves me. In the midst of everything this life can throw at me, I know I’m not alone.

Life is messy. It’s just a fact. We’re all messed up human beings trying to live the best life that we can. Accept it. And when you make mistakes, don’t let them define you. It’s so easy to start name calling yourself (believe me, I’ve been doing some of that today). Give room for God to work despite your mistakes.

We all get to feeling down sometimes. We all sometimes wonder if it’s worth it. We all make mistakes. Remember you’re loved, treasured, accepted, and redeemed. Hold onto that. Savor that today.

Monday, May 6, 2013

Stop Asking Jesus Into Your Heart: Audiobook Review

I received this audiobook courtesy of Christian Audio for the purpose of writing a review. 

Narrator Thoughts - Tom Parks does the perfect job of reading this book in the matter-of-fact way that it is written. His clear and simple way of speaking provided the perfect framework for this book. It was a perfect choice. 

Book Thoughts - As someone who has doubted they have saving faith, I really enjoyed this book. Greear spells out the truth so clearly that I found my faith refreshed and my soul encouraged. It's all about resting on the finished work of God, not what we do. "Salvation isn't about completing a ritual, it's about consummating
  a relationship with God." - J. D. Greear. He also explored each scripture that some pastors use to threaten people with losing their salvation. He looked at them in the light of all of what Jesus taught and God's nature. It put my mind at ease about some things that I had heard preached.

If you would like to learn how to get your own copy of Stop Asking Jesus Into Your Heart, stop by ChristianAudio or Amazon to get one. 

Friday, May 3, 2013

Ministry Of The Month

This month is going to be a little different. First off, I am going to be posting just encouragement posts on Fridays. I've been going through a busy season, and that has taught me some things about ministry and life. I wanted to share it with you.

Secondly for my ministry this month, I choose to make a nativity for my Mom for Christmas. Every year since 2006 I have made my mom a nativity for Christmas. So this year I am going to start early and make her one similar to this.

I hope and pray that your month is filled with love, ministry, and fruitful service with Him. 

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

April Ministry Update

I made five hats for cancer patients. These were so fun and easy to make. I enjoyed working on them.  

My favorite was this one. I love putting flowers on them. My hope and prayer is that whoever gets it, the bright flower will cheer them up.