Saturday, January 14, 2012

Proverbs 12:21 "There shall no evil happen to the just: but the wicked shall be filled with mischief."
When I read this verse this morning, I thought, "Wait a second! What about Job? Evil happened to him! What about Joseph? Or the blind man that Jesus healed? The disciples asked Jesus who had sinned to cause this man to be blind? Obviously they were looking at the situation the way we often do. "What a pitty that person is going through so much. They must have some secret sin that God is either judging or trying to purge them from. If only they were more like me!" Some of us though who have gone through trials before know that the reason is often past our earthly comprehension. Jesus responded to his disciples in John 9 and verse 3, "Neither this man sinned, nor his parents; but that the works of God should be made manifest in him." This man was born blind to bring God glory! There is a song callee blessings that I heard recently. The chorus asks, "What if your blessings fall like rain drops? What if your healing comes through pain? What if a thousand sleepless nights is what it takes to know He's near? What if the trials of this life are His mercies in disguise?" My Bible reading then took me to Genesis where I read the story of Joseph, a young Hebrew boy who had the favor of his father because of who his mother was and the hatred of his brothers because of his fathers favor. This wasn't something Joseph asked for or even deserved, but not once does the Bible record him blaming God or complaining to Him. Joseph was sold by his own brothers into slavery, and then, just when life started looking up, Potiphar's wife had to slander him for a sin he didn't commit, and he was thrown in prison. What? Where was God in all his? Could it be that he was busy working this trial out for good? Maybe the trials Joseph was going through truly were God's mercy in disguise. My Bible reading hasn't yet taken me to the point where we see what God was doing, but admittedly I cheated and I think I know what's going to happen. Joseph could have sat in prison and gotten bitter, but instead he chose to focus on the goodness of God. Again things started looking up for Joseph and God miraculously made him second in command in the land of Egypt. Wow! But why? Was God simply rewarding Joseph for his faithfulness? Maybe, but I think God had an even bigger plan! You see, there was a famine that covered the land and only Egypt was profiting from it. Because of God's favor on his life, Joseph knew about the famine before it happened and had prepared Egypt to face this national disaster. Things weren't going quite so well for Jacob's family. The famine had hit them hard and they decided to go to Egypt where they could buy food so that they would not die. If you haven't read the story yourself then I encourage you to do so, but for the sake of those who have already heard it I'm going to cut to the chase. When Joseph's brothers realized that the man they were bowing before, begging for food and forgiveness, was their long-lost, sold-into-slavery brother, they knew they deserved His worst wrath. But through all his trials, Joseph must have recognized that the raindrops that were hitting him were meant to make him stronger and help him to grow. Josephs response to his brothers was this, "Fear not: for am I in the place of God? But as for you, ye thought evil against me; but God meant it unto good to bring to pass, as it is today, to save much people alive. Now therefore fear ye not: I will nourish you, and your little ones." Oh the picture of grace Joseph's response is. Similar to the grace of the One who died for you and me, and cried, "Father, forgive them! They know not what they do." Our Savior knew that He had come to die. He knew the purpose of the blood that was flowing from his veins and covering the ground. It was to buy victory and freedom for you and me! Our Father controls the raindrops that fall on you and me. Always remember that there is a reason and purpose for the storm. "What if the trials of this life are His mercies in disguise?"

Friday, October 21, 2011

Open Hands

Lord, help me to hold lightly
To the treasures of this world.
Help me live with upturned palms;
Heart open, loose, uncurled.

Make me willing to give up
What You don’t want for me.
In blessings or hard trials
Teach me, Lord, to trust in Thee.

Every good and perfect gift
Cometh from above,
And every purging trial
Is filtered through Your love.

Will we accept Your blessings
And yet reject Your tests?
In choosing only blessings
We, in turn, reject Your best.

My tight grasp I will loosen, Lord.
My troubled heart will trust.
My hands to You I’ll open
For I know that You are just.

Friday, September 30, 2011

The Receipt of My Ransom

The receipt of my ransom
Is nail-scared hands.
The proof of my pardon
Reaches out to each man.
A body once broken -
Restored and renewed;
But those precious pierced hands
Still reach out to you.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

An Amazing Summer in Summary

Well, the summer has come and gone and in just a couple hours I'll be heading back to West Coast Baptist College. I'm excited to be going back because it's really the only place I own a bed which, for me, makes it home. I know many will tell you that home is where the heart is, but let me tell you, you can't rest your head on your heart!
It was an amazing summer. Words really can't describe it. I was able to talk to my dad last night and I wanted to share with him what my summer was like, but where to begin?!! I guess if you're looking for an overview, we saw about 50 Gentiles saved and 2 Jewish people. What! Only two Jewish people? That was our target group. What an unsuccessful outreach... in the eyes of man. We were yelled at, accused of being frauds, we had people driving by taking pictures of us, we were surrounded by police officers several times. (We're a pretty scary looking bunch. Wouldn't you call the police if you had 5 girls dressed in skirts and flip flops going door to door in your neighborhood?) We were kicked out of two cities completely, had packets ripped up and thrown at us, were involved in 4 car accidents (only one major - praise the Lord!)... it was a very interesting summer. The question is - was it worth it? I was reading a blog by a man who prides himself on being able to find the angle in every religious outreach. He was criticizing the Jews for Jesus and said that it was ridiculous that they would spend all summer reaching out to a people group and finish only having reached 11 people. And truly, in the eyes of man, this was a practically fruitless mission. However, considering the pricelessness of a soul before God - our labour was definitely not in vain.
One of the men who received Christ was a Jewish man from London. He took the packet that we left at his door, watched the video, called Bro. Cantor, and was lead to the Lord over the phone. I got the privilege of visiting him several days later. Morris is in his mid-eighties. He told us all about his family, his Christian friend, and why he believes that Jesus is God in the flesh. He told us that Jesus died, was put in a tomb, and when they went to the grave, He was gone. Only God could do that! His child-like faith was beautiful, because that is the faith that God wants us all to have.
The second Jewish man who accepted Jesus as his Messiah is named Andrew. We went back to his house three days before we left Miami. He is a nice guy, but he's a big guy, covered with tattoos (obviously not a practicing Jew). We asked him whether he had watched the DVD. He said no. We asked if we could share with him what the Bible says about eternity and he said he was kind of busy, but we could come back another time. I told him that we were leaving and we wouldn't have time to come back... and he might not have another chance to hear the truth. So, I begged him for 5 minutes to show him what the Bible says. Fifteen to twenty minutes later (okay, so I'm kind of long winded), Andrew accepted Christ as his savior. Praise the Lord for His saving grace. I was able to go back the next day and leave him with a Bible. He also agreed to let our pastor come visit him. Please pray for Andrew and Morris as they grow spiritually.
Also pray for those who were given the truth, but chose not to accept it. Jesus said that it was easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of Heaven. I've come to the conclusion that you can add God's chosen people to the rich. They're so closed, and if you look at the circumstances, it's no wonder. They've been persecuted and targeted through the centuries. However, that does not mean that they will be unaccountable for what they do with the truth. Pray for the peace of Jerusalem and receptiveness for God's people. He loves them and He wants them. He's calling for His lost sheep, but they don't recognize His voice. Will you help them hear?

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

A Three Week Review

Well, I was getting somewhat overwhelmed with all that was going on down here, and when I got behind on blogging I figured I'd wait until things slowed down before I started writing again. (I know this makes absolutely no sense, but I talked myself into believing it. I can be very persuasive sometimes!) So, in short, we have been under attack! We started out breaking down on a highway with no shoulder. So, all three of us girls jumped out and started pushing - uphill. It was great. Of course, nobody stopped to help, but they did a lot of honking and staring. At one point I turned around and asked no one in particular what they wanted us to do! Finally a man started yelling at us in Spanish. We quickly let him know that it didn't matter how loud he yelled, we weren't going to understand his command. After a while we understood that he wanted us to get inside the care and he was going to push our bumper with his until we came to an off ramp. Praise the Lord for our Spanish speaking angel!
That same day, after getting back to the ranch and jogging off some frustration, I jumped in the pool to cool off, only to find several minutes later, my poor phone drowning on the bottom of the pool. I've been told that I should have had a smart phone, so it would have known how to swim.
Several days later, our driver had her phone stollen off her car seat. Around that same time, Kayla Cook, one of my favorite team members, passed out at a Jewish man's door. THIS WAS NOT IN THE PLAN!!! We know that Satan doesn't like what we're doing, but there comes a point that you wonder what part is Satan and what part is just plain stupidity. Needless to say we were getting discouraged. I used to begin each day telling the girls what a great day it was going to be, but I began telling them that we'd probably get run over or kidnapped, but it would still be a good day because God makes no mistakes.
Last Friday we saw 4 people saved and we were so excited! We were able to talk to two Muslim men who were desperately searching for the truth. We gave them the gospel and although they were not ready to claim Christ as their Messiah, the door was left wide open for a pastor to come back and pray with them and continue to share the message of Jesus Christ. We were thrilled... and pretty amazed that nothing bad had happened all day. No literally - we were a little sceptical. This never happens to us! That night I spent the entire night in the ER with Kayla while they tried to figure out what was causing her to faint. So, maybe Satan was still fighting.
It wasn't until Thursday that our whole group was able to go out together again. Sickness was tugging down two of my girls and it was all we could do to get from day to day without losing one or the other. I was tired. They were tired. We were a mess. Welcome Friday - the last day of our work week - and we get hit by a car. We are all healing up well, but there are times when I ask God, "Why." However, it is not my place to question God. As Job said, "Shall we receive good from the hand of the Lord and not evil also?" God does not make mistakes, and through it all I am learning to trust.
We would very much appreciate any prayer that you can spare. Kayla Cook went home to heal and to figure out what was causing her fainting. Her plan is to come back at the beginning of August. Amanda Price went home to heal and found out that she has a spinal injury that is going to require several weeks of physical therapy. Ashley Maynard is experiencing minor back and neck pain which the doctor attributes to tight muscles along her spine. However, she is going to tough it out and has already returned to work. I am experiencing some chest pain due to what the doctor believes is an irritated rib connection that hurts but is definitely not fatal. Praise the Lord I am back on the battlefield!
God is good and makes no mistakes. I must admit that the relentless attack of Satan was beginning to take its toll. However, this morning I was reminded that sometimes we will grow weary and we will fall.

"Hast thou not known? hast thou not heard, that the everlasting God, the Lord, the Creator of the end of the earth, fainteth not, neither is weary? there is no searching of his understanding.
He giveth power to the faint; and to them that have no might he increaseth strength.
Even the youth shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall:
But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint."
God has not given up on me. It is no3 a sin to grow weary. Even the youngest and strongest will do it. But it is the just man that riseth up again. And it is God that gives the strength to stand.

Sunday, June 19, 2011


Brilliant - (You know it's true!)
Cautious - You think before you act.
Dedicated - More than anyone I know.
Energetic - You live with a passion.
Fantastic - Well, I think you are! And you've got at least 11 more fans.
Godly - Thank you for my heritage.
Handsome - Even more so than Charlton Heston.
Independent - But reliant on God
Just What I Needed - God makes no mistakes!
Loving - I love you too!
Merciful - 'Cause if you weren't I probably wouldn't be here now.
Not Normal - We are called to be a peculiar people, zealous of good works. You are.
Only Mine - I'm not gonna share.
Persistent - The just man falleth seven times, but riseth up again.
Quiet - I have watched you for years take time to be still and recognize God.
Respectful - You are not a respecter of persons based on their color, ethnicity, or social standing. This is an attribute of God and I admire it in you.
Sweet - There's no denying it, Dad. I caught you!
Trustworthy - When I need counsel you are the first person I turn to. You have wisdom from years of living and you have invested so much into me. Thank you.
Ultra Cool - :) When I grow up, I want to be just like you! ... Just a little more feminine.
Valuable - I'm not about to trade you in or let you go!
Wise - The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.
X-tremely Handsome - Oh wait. I think I already said that. :) But it's true.
Yielded - To God. You are my hero and my example.
Z - Hmmm... well, you're not a zebra... I guess I'll just say this: You are A to Z to me. I love you and I am so thankful for you. Thank you for loving God and giving to me a Godly heritage. I am so proud to call you mine.


Tuesday, June 14, 2011

A Rock That Is Higher Than I

This poem is dedicated to my girls: Amanda, Ashley, and Kayla. Praising God that there is a much wiser and much more dependable foundation than me. :)

If I were the top - we'd all be in trouble!
If I were the master - we'd all surely die!
If I were the shelter - the storms would destroy us!
But - there is a Rock that is higher than I!

There is a tower of refuge awaiting
For any who choose to enter His gate.
There is a perfect encompassing mercy
For any whose heart in His hands will place

Psalm 61:1-2
"Hear my cry, O God; attend unto my prayer.
From the end of the earth will I cry unto thee, when my heart is overwhelmed: lead me to the rock that is higher than I."