Monday, March 21, 2011

love so Amazing!

my cup runneth over. it has been one of those weeks where His presence has outweighed my own and i can feel it so deeply.
counting blessings with ann and so many other wonderful women today.

88- watching turtles sunbathe in a pond with the two cutest boys on the planet
92- funny husband with silly surprises
96- fried green tomatoes with mozzarella
97- girl's night away with one very short sleep break from non-stop talking
98- cookies and cream milkshakes
99- making up "moves" to the Lord's prayer to help my baby remember his Bible verse
100- parents who trust me to walk with their children and families through the toughest moments
105- Friday morning Bible study that I don't want to end
106- a friend sharing Andy Stanley's, The Grace of God on cd (i love it!!!)
107- Saturday's double header and a beautiful 75 degrees
108- proud boys who hit balls, run the bases and try so hard to pay attention
109- Willie Wonka
110- Apples to Apples Family with the silliest of sillies
111- beauty from ashes
112- little people that God has a "special plan for" (his dad's words) sitting beside me in church and filling my heart with grace
114- a slew of nieces, nephews, aunts, uncles, grannies and friends gathered together in the lobby after a church service
115- my youngest nephew showing me his coloring page from Sunday School that says something awesome about obedience...now that would be some amazing grace!!!

lisa


Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Obey

Letting Go...

this weekend i was walking around my neighborhood with my ipod blaring listening to chris tomlin and lecrea's "our God" from the Passion Conference. i felt the heat rise up in my chest. this feeling that i love and that i want to experience all of the time. the warmth and the energy behind it reminds me that i am never alone and that He has something for me far beyond myself. He whispered, "MOVE! DO IT! NOW!" girls, writing a blog could only be Spirit led because the "dig deep" truth is that i would NEVER voluntarily put myself out there and risk rejection and criticism. i have very little confidence when it comes to scriptural knowledge and recording my thoughts on a blog could be a slippery slope for me. it would be better for me to bury my head in the sand and stop the typing. i just don't know about this. but then again, it's not about me.


that's what i get for choosing obey as my "one word" this year . each year on Jan. 1 we choose one word that will focus our walk with Christ and lead us into a deeper relationship with Him. last year i chose, "be still" (a bit rebellious given that it's not one word) and it led me into a heap of changes and a lot of discomfort. after a year of "being still", focusing more attention on Christ than ever before and doing my humble best to give him the reigns, God put a spotlight on some ugly truths about what i valued and who i really trusted. many of my choices did not reflect Him even though i would have told you otherwise. a year of being still, led me to a great big choice, obey Him or obey myself and the world.

i have made a career of knowing myself well. no self-loathing here, just big time transparency. i have been a rather "worldly" girl and left to my own desires, i lean towards material "stuff" and comfort with a big old longing to fit into our culture. obeying God meant less stuff and i worried that without visits to my fabulous hair guy, fun clothes and numerous other financial freedoms, i just might be miserable. i worried that change might create bigger worries than my family and i could handle and that conflicts would arise and shake our marriage. as God would have it, I was right and i could not do this on my own. there was conflict and there were tense, hard times. i needed HIM and i needed to trust HIM. how can it be so easy for me to talk the faith talk but so difficult to put my faith into action...to give it hands and feet? i had to dig deep, to a place i did not know i had and learn the truth that He is and always will be enough. i needed to really get that the accessories of worldly success will never sustain me and will always leave me longing for more, more, more. it felt HUGE but HE kept whispering...."Trust me, you are mine, you are worthy, you are transformed in ME, you are fearfully and wonderfully made....trust ME!"

so i did it. i obeyed. i left a job that i needed to leave but was too afraid. i carved out a schedule that met the needs of my family and went out on my own, risking the rejection that has always seemed too much to bear. we did a budget that was insane in it's minimalism and we cut out a lot of habits that we used to feel entitled to and take for granted. and yes, the enemy has shown up and tempted me with the lies he tells so well. believe me sister girl, i have often found myself unsteady and distracted. tears fall and fear swells and i learn to trust and obey over and over again. and my God, your God, our God, keeps showing up in some of the most unexpected places with an abundance of beautiful gifts. i see and experience His goodness and grace more than ever as I learn to shift my eyes from me to Him.

Joy, unspeakable joy.

what call do you hear? where does He want to take you? will you take a risk and obey?

Digging Deep and Trusting Him...

Monday, March 14, 2011

1000 gifts

Since I just started my blog, few of you would know that I am pretty much always freaking out about Ann Voskamp's blog (aholyexperience.com) and book, One Thousand Gifts. I do not have the words to convey how much her words encourage me and how the challenge of recording God's gifts over and over has opened my eyes to seeing Him in my life each and every day.
God has used Ann's gifts to teach me (and countless others) to acknowledge and give thanks daily that All is Grace!

Here are some of my recent "God is here" moments:

15-Isaiah stoked about a friend's salvation
31- girlfriends who "tell it" in love and just like it is
57- straight honesty from a little person
60- a new Bible study with new friends
62- surprises that go beyond my wildest imagination
77- taking risks and walking on the edge
78- a weekend spent "shibby shabbing" old furniture with my sister
79- reunion with one of my favorites after just saying goodbye
80- anticipating the most special of girl's nights
81- worship songs that fill me full of Him and drown out the enemy noise




The Joy Project 40

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