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Tag Archives: Soli Deo Gloria

Stewarding God’s Story

If I had a penny for every metaphor of God’s writing a story in our lives over the past few weeks I’d be a rich gal! Here are just a few:

I read this tweet about giving God the pen & I wrote a post about it

God's Pen

I’ve read blogs and heard things on the radio about how God is writing a story with our lives.

Last week our Campus Pastor, Jonathan, announced the Amazing 2013 event by staying,
“We are stewards of the story God is writing with our lives.”

And I’m ok as long as there’s writing going on. As long as I see the pen moving. Action, people. I like action. You know, “Action Action We want Action! A-C-T(clap,clap,clap) I-O-N (clap,clap,clap)” Go, Do. I’m not a good “sit still”-er. Think Martha, not Mary. Because if I’m doing, moving, I have a semblance of control.

So what happens when God refills the ink of His quill pen?
What do I do when it seems like an eternity
between the time the last word was written and the next letter starts?

What do I do with the waiting?

I’m not good at it. My friend Jen Ferguson wrote this: “Why do I feel better if I’m doing something fruitless instead of being still & letting God do something magnificent?” Oh, how I relate to that! This is her take:

1Ugly vs. BeautyAfter today’s service I could say,
“Focusing on problem can make you miss the Promise who walked through the door.”

Just today God gave me some challenges from the message. (It’s worth watching! According to John Week 5.) Pastor Todd preached out of John 11, comparing the miracle of Lazarus’ resurrection to the one where Jesus raised the son of the Roman official in John 4:43-54. One was an instant miracle (John 4), one was The Long Way Around (John 11). Here are some of the quotes and challenges God gave to me today:

  • Don’t despise the detour and miss what God has on the journey
  • Don’t hold onto an old thing with Jesus wants to do a new thing
  • Stop crying in the corner about your problem when the PROMISE is walking through the door!!
  • There was a crowd in John 11 – more people were affected on The Long Way Around
  • Don’t hold onto grief; Hold onto God
  • God will get you where He wants you, you might just have to take The Long Way Around. When you wonder, “Why is this taking so long??”, hang in there. God will get you where He wants you.
  • Martha & Mary thought Jesus was LATE, but He was NOT!! (this is a biggie for me!!) He was right on time for what He wanted to do that glorified God
  • It’s The Long Way Around that tests my faith. When God asks, “Do you REALLY BELIEVE it?” Like Pastor Todd said of his conversations with God: God – “I know you can preach it, sing it, pray it, admonish it, but do you really BELIEVE it. Do you really believe I AM ENOUGH for you?”
  • God cares more about changing me than changing my circumstances

And the kicker was this line from the opening video by Donta Nelson

“We should not be desperate for the miracles,
but desperate for the SOURCE”

and I realize I’ve gotten more desperate for the miracle, the testimony, than I am for the SOURCE.

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Reflecting Ups & Downs

Over 300 journals (& counting) downloaded!! 

Hearing God's Voice COV

YIPPEE!!!
Sort of.

After I wrote “Reflecting” this morning, God’s giving me a chance to do it.

And I’m struggling!

I’m struggling to have an eternal perspective.
I’m struggling to have patience.
I’m struggling to trust.
I’m struggling to listen to the wisdom of people who have gone before me in an area where I have NO expertise. As in none. zero. zilch. nada.

currclick-publishersmall

We partnered with CurrClick a while back. One of the marketing tools Leah encouraged us to use is the promotional week, where a publisher (us) offers a freebie for a week. I get the premise, and she’s by far the expert! So we scheduled it. And it’s going like crazy today.

1email

BUT…

I see the number 300+ and think – that could be money in our pocket!!
And we NEED money in our pocket right now!
Oooohhhh. (see the struggle?!) Isn’t having money important?

BUT…

we just read in school about the Great Depression and how some business men – wealthy business men – committed suicide because they lost their wealth. And we talked about how that meant their lives were built around money, not God. Don’t I want to model for the boys a life built on God, His truth, and His priorities? Don’t I want to model a life with an eternal, not a temporal, perspective?

BUT…most importantly….God says :

  • His Words are not just idle words for you—they are your life. Deuteronomy 32:47
  • It is written, Man doesn’t live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God. Matthew 4:4, Deuteronomy 8:3
  • Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will never pass away. Matthew 24:35
  • His words are life to those who find them and health to one’s whole body. Proverbs 4:22
  • Everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. Matthew 7:24-25

And, really, isn’t that what my goal is for the journals? The whole reason they came into being?
To help kids begin to love digging into God’s Word on their own,
knowing they can because the Holy Spirit is their teacher.
To help kids build a solid foundation on His Word, so they can be counter-culturally relevant.

1lggpage

So I practice changing my focus.
If 300+ people learn to study God’s Word together,
don’t I believe that could change the world?!
Isn’t that better than all the money in the world?!
oohh, but the here & now is so here & now – so real!
It’s a struggle, let me tell you!
But God wants me to trust Him to provide, not the journals.
He wants me to have an eternal perspective.
He wants me to reflect Him!

 

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Reflecting

Remember how I Won A Lesson?

1Necklace Soli copy

As I was taking pictures,
trying to get one of me actually wearing the necklace,
I got this one.

1Dface

Which made me think:
Is my life reflecting God’s face, giving Him glory
just like my son’s face is reflecting in the necklace?
And that’s the whole point –
Soli Deo Gloria
ALL FOR HIS GLORY!

ps – read how God gave me a chance to do just that this very day!

 
8 Comments

Posted by on April 29, 2013 in My Musings

 

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I Won A Lesson

“Enter to Win!”
Familiar words.
Done it many times.
I. NEVER. win.
NEVER!
Until a few weeks ago.

And I won more than a prize.
I won a lesson.

My friend Jen, of Finding Heaven Today, has a group called Soli Deo Gloria. We “meet” together on Monday nights (or sometimes Tuesday mornings for me :-)) to share our hearts. A few weeks ago Jen shared about some necklaces she’d had made for Soli Deo Gloria. And she shared what the necklace means to her. (You can read that here.) I can totally relate to her words because they could be mine.

Necklace

pictures are from Jen’s blog

“I’ve had a problem with pride.
I’ve had issues (and still do, at times) with asking for the world’s applause.
I’ve wanted glory and fame and recognition simply because I thought these things would bring me wholeness.
I thought that if I did big things in the name of Jesus, I would have the best of both worlds

–the approval and acclamation of God and Man.” (Jen’s words, my issues)

At the end of her post was a chance to “Enter To Win” one of the necklaces.

Every thing you did gave you another chance to win the necklace. She had things like commenting on the post, commenting on other people’s posts in the Soli Deo Gloria party, sharing on Facebook and Twitter, etc.

Enter To Win

So here’s the rub for me.
This came during my time of fasting.
No big deal, except I was fasting social media,
so I wasn’t on Facebook or Twitter at the time.
Dilemma!!

Oh I thought about all kinds of ways to get around it. I even thought about emailing Jen to ask for a special dispensation – could I maybe just say I wasn’t on Facebook or Twitter and still get the points? Should I try to get the points by just leaving a message about the fast – if that would even work? What to do?! What to do?!

As I was stewing, God spoke to me. He convicted me that He is sovereign. He knew the timing of Jen’s post would coincide with my social media fast. If He really wanted me to win that necklace, He could overcome the “lost” chances from not being on Twitter or Facebook. So I did everything I could, but didn’t email or try to manipulate my chances.

AND HE DID!!
I WON!!!

1Winner

I can’t wait to get my necklace! Not just because I think it’s neat. But because I so identify with Jen’s words in her post. So it will be a reminder to me, also, that my focus should be on God and His glory in all I do. And it will also be a reminder of the balance of doing what I can do, but trusting God to do what He can do, and leaving results up to Him. Which is a great lesson for me!

AND… before I could post this… guess what came in the mail today?!?!
I LOVE IT!!
Thank You, Lord!

1Necklace Soli copy

My necklace – all for HIS GLORY!!

 
11 Comments

Posted by on April 15, 2013 in My Musings

 

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UN STINKING BELIEVABLE! part 1

yep.

That’s just how I wrote it in my journal…

UN   STINKIN   BELIEVABLE!!

I’ve been dying to share this! So here’s the story…1pennies

We’re in our 21 days of prayer and fasting. One of my prayers was, “God increase our income.” That very day I found 6 pennies sort of scattered in the library parking lot. I started laughing out loud – literally! I said, “OK. I got the message. I’ll pray more specifically.”

My next prayer: “God, increase our income in denominations of 10.” And the next day – no lie – Kerri found a dime on the parking lot as we were running at HEW! We both started laughing! And I got the message to be more specific still.

1tenThird time’s a charm, right? “Ok, God, bills, not coins.” And, seriously, we got a $10 bill in the mail!! Not totally unexpected since family usually sends that amount at Valentine’s, Easter, and Thanksgiving. But the timing, and the fact that it was a $10 bill, not 2 fives or anything different. Unbelievable!
(but not UN STINKIN BELIEVABLE yet! :-))

Then the serious conversations came.

I have never had such a long, continual back-and-forth conversation with God before in my life.
I’ve also never heard God so clearly.
He was challenging me about my perceptions of Him.

I wasn’t at the point where I could ask for big yet.But I do remember praying that God would do exceedingly abundantly above all we could ask or think a few days earlier. Still processing.

THEN I got a phone call from a friend who asked if we were home. Her son had a surprise gift for us. Her words were, “It’s not a puppy. If you decide you don’t want it, I’ll take it back. Don’t worry.” I’m thinking we’re getting a turtle cuz her son’s turtles had babies or something. Have to admit to being a little nervous. She pulls up with her son in the van. And from the back seat they pull out

a   flat  screen  TV!

1tv

I kid you not!!!

And I was speechless!!!!!!

Here’s our old TV.

1oldTV

Suffice to say that we needed a new place for the new TV!
And I had no problem KNOWING God would provide that!!
And HE did.
We just did some rearranging, which helped us anyway!

Here are a few last tidbits for you.

  • God rewarded Tim’s patience and discipline. He really thought about getting a new TV in the fall, but resisted the urge so we could be disciplined with our finances.
  • Nathan had been praying for a flat screen, so he got to see God answer in His perfect timing
  • The boys saw the opportunity to give God glory when they tell people the story. They see it clearly as a blessing.
  • We have a daily reminder of Who God Is – and How BIG He is!!
  • My friend was so encouraged to see the timing of the whole thing…which adds to the richness of the story…and is for another post.

TO GOD BE THE GLORY!!! 

 
23 Comments

Posted by on March 25, 2013 in 1000 Gifts, WOW! Only God!

 

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Community

Community…
Being together
sharing
connecting
in homeschool coops…

coop

Thanks for the pictures, Jenny!

in life groups…
in running groups…

castle

So glad you took pictures, Erin!

as 5 people link arms and cross the finish line together
supporting one of our own who ran 13.1 miles sick(!!)
(yes, she is amazing!!)

and celebrating the Precious Princesses we ran for…

usually with people I can see.

Seriously not something I ever expected to find online.

But I did.

Places I go where I feel a part of a community
Because we interact
Because the hostesses have made me feel valued
Because I have responded to them
and they have responded to me
And I feel loss if I don’t get a chance to connect

i-P9wn5Qq

Virtual Friends – yes, really truly friends.
I’ve never laid eyes on them
only read their thoughts
And they read mine
But we’ve connected and built community
and some supported me in my Hope Run.

The first person to support me was from my online community group Soli Deo Gloria
my Wise friend, Jean, who prays for us
emails us, encourages us,
and imparts her wisdom
and helps us connect as a group across the 4 corners of the USA!

1Jean
The second virtual friend
– from GUAM! –
sent me the most perfect card
summing up the whole purpose of the race.
And that card meant more than any amount she ever could have sent
Because we had connected

DSC05667

And her words encouraged me!

DSC05669

All in all, I had 8 people support me.
One-fourth of them I’ve never met in person!

And that was one of the neatest things to share
with the gals during the Princess Weekend

Because God is not bound by space or time or even physical sight.
We are community because of the common bond we share as
Sisters in Christ.
United by His blood
Working for His purposes
together
in community.

 
12 Comments

Posted by on March 12, 2013 in My Musings

 

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SisterHood for Soli Deo Gloria

SisterHood –
a different word than sister.
I have a wonderful brother.
I don’t have a sister.

But I have a SisterHood!

Belonging.
By choice.
These girls have my back.
They encourage, strengthen, and overwhelm me.
They’re comfortable.
They bring joy.
Make me smile.
Take time for me.
Help me.
They make life rich, vibrant.
We pray, laugh, and cry together.
We share life (and coffee, of course! :-))
and I love them!

I’m blessed to have both an “in person” SisterHood
and a virtual one, thanks to Jen at FindingHeaven.
I felt lost in blog-land, until Jen invited me to be part of a Soli Deo Gloria small group,
and Jean said she’d take the lead.
Now I have a place to belong in cyberspace as well as in real life.

It’s beautiful and
it’s truly all for God’s Glory!

 
12 Comments

Posted by on January 14, 2013 in My Musings

 

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