Monthly Archives: September 2011

Wow. I Have An Amazing Job

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Yep. The title says it all.

Over the next few days I get to make phone calls to previous campers who are in the age range for our next retreat. I’ll be contacting roughly 75 families, which is a rather intimidating number. At first I was nervous about this task, as i’ve done “cold calling” before, but my boss reassured me there wasn’t any pressure for “sales” as he knew that was one of my concerns from previous conversations I had had with him.

I then got thinking – how amazing an opportunity the Lord has placed before me. I get to call 75 families. I get to ask them how they are genuinely doing. I get to talk to the camper and ask what they loved about camp. I get to pray for them.

Over the last year the Lord has cultivated a burden for intercession and prayer within me, and now He has placed me in a job where I get to do just that. He knows my heart so well. I am exceedingly humbled to be able to be a part of this ministry!

 

A Servant’s Heart

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My attitude over the last few days has been anything but admirable. Sure I can put on a good façade, but the honest condition of my heart has been self absorbed at the very least. I have chosen to focus on my own selfish desires, or more accurately, I took on the attitudes of those around me.

I woke up with the joy of the Lord this morning. I have continued to let His JOY bring me STRENGTH. He has taught me so much in the few hours i’ve been awake about the difference between a “heart to serve” and a “servant’s heart”.

Romans 1:1 “Paul, a servant of Christ Jesus, called to be an apostle, set apart for the gospel of God…”

What does Paul mean by being a servant of Jesus? The original Greek word is doulos which means bondservant which is defined as devoted to another to the disregard of ones own interests.

The ultimate desire of my heart is to serve HIM wholeheartedly, to live a life or reckless abandon to Him – to love and serve well. If all I have is the desire to serve and not the heart of a servant,  I will never succeed. If I do not forsake my own interests, my own flesh, anything for selfish gain – I will have given fruition to a hypocritical life-ministry. I will have sung His praises with my lips while my heart was running in the other direction.

In James 2:14-26 it states “What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can that faith save him? If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacking in daily food, and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and filled,” without giving them the things needed for the body, what good is that? So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead. But someone will say, “You have faith and I have works.” Show me your faith apart from your works, and I will show you my faith by my works. You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe – and shudder! Do you want to be show, you foolish person, that faith apart from works is useless? Was not our Abraham our father justified by works when he offered up his son Isaac on the altar? You see that faith was active alone with his works, and faith was completed by his works; and the Scripture was fulfilled that says, “Abraham believed God, and it was counted to Him as righteousness” – and he was called a friend of God. You see that a person is justified by works and not by faith alone. And in the same way was not also Rahab the prostitute justified by works when she received the messengers and sent them out another way? For as the body apart from the spirit is dead, so also faith apart from works is dead.”

My works, if not acted out with a pure and sincere heart, will not prove my faith, so to speak. I may fool man, but I cannot fool God. He knows my heart, my motives, my selfish reasons.

As I type this out, I am yet convicted of my selfishness this week. I have the most amazing job in the world – I get to serve so many different people everyday, especially on the weekends. I have an opportunity to be a refreshing face – one that radiates the love of Jesus and creates an aura of peace. I get to invest in the lives of 3rd-6th graders every Wednesday night. I get to continue to cultivate the relationships with my campers from this summer. I even get to teach riding lessons every friday! How can I be so blind to pick my own self centered interests instead of seeing these amazing blessings placed right before me!?

I am exceedingly blessed to be in the ministry that God has placed me. I have much to learn about cultivating a servant’s heart and not merely possessing a desire to serve, but I serve a God who will continue to mold and shape that within me so long as my spirit is willing.

So let me ask you, which one do you have? A heart to serve or a servant’s heart?

Chivalry Is Not Dead

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I had one of those days that you don’t ever want to experience again. I was on the verge of tears almost constantly, and for the life of me didn’t know why. I had unrest in my soul to extremes that I hadn’t felt in a very long time. Before dinner tonight I took a walk down to the barn to feed and to try and clear my head. The walk didn’t do what I had intended it to do, but it proved to be a way for God to show His love more intimately than I could  have ever imagined. I was about halfway back to main camp when a vehicle pulled up behind me. The gentleman had his window rolled down and simply asked if I’d like a ride. I pondered for a moment, and gratefully accepted his offer. We made small talk to on the very short remainder of the journey. He asked me where I would like to be dropped off, and instead of saying “where ever is most convenient” or “it doesn’t matter”, I said “the dining hall area would be great”- and he obliged without complaint or any reference to it being out of his way. I stepped out of his jeep, walked in the back door of the dining hall, started my work, and let myself dwell on that simple, but profound, act of kindness. He picked me up and gave me a ride when I needed it most, even though I was capable of walking the rest of the way. I allowed myself to be “carried”. It was almost as if God was physically showing me what He wanted to do with my heart- pick it up and carry it to it’s ultimate destination- the refuge of His arms. I am overwhelmed by His faithfulness to show Himself at exactly the right moment. We serve a good, good God.

So, kind sir, (I realize now that I never did ask your name) wherever you are- thank you.

Sweet Potatoes and Declarations of Love

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I know, I know. The title of this post is a little (ok, a lot) out there, but just trust me. They go together like peas in a pod.

I found this amazing recipe for a “stir-fry”, and of course, didn’t follow the recipe at all. I ended up using a medium sweet potato, pablano pepper, red pepper, pearl onions, some leftover mushrooms, sweet peas, and a clove of garlic. For spices, I used some cumin, salt, and lemon-pepper. The flavors mingled so well together, I am thoroughly pleased with how it turned out. But boy, oh boy, let me tell ya, sweet potatoes are ridiculously hard to chop. I swear, it took more mustering and determination to cut the whole potato than anything else I had to do that day.

So, really, the whole “stir-fry” plays an important role in the deep life lesson I learned that night. See, if I hadn’t chose to make it, I wouldn’t have been in the house alone.  I wouldn’t have let my thoughts wander. I wouldn’t have had quality time with Jesus.

Earlier this week, I had several conversations pertaining to the end times. They were all positive conversations with great anticipation and excitement for things to come. Whenever  I think about the throne room, and imagine every tongue, tribe, and nation singing infinite praises to the Lord, I get a peaceful smile upon my face. However, these conversations have caused me to realize how selfish I am. I deeply desire to be a wife, a mother, and to live a quiet but Gospel driven life. There is nothing wrong with desiring these things, but when I begin to wish that God would wait to come, when I hope that I have just a little bit more time to get my “bucket list” done, I am no longer striving to please God. These Godly desires can so quickly become idols, of which I am painfully finding out.

We all have a desire to have that one person in our lives that we can look in their eyes and declare in wholehearted truth, “I love you”.  To have that person who knows you intimately, and you know them intimately, but yet you still have a deep and great love for each other. This desire has grown and grown within me, but I find myself at a crossroads. I may never get the chance to have that opportunity while here on earth. Will I be ok with that? Only Jesus can satisfy me, but will I choose to let Him? This truth the Lord revealed to me: I may not be able to declare my love to another human while on earth, but I can declare with my lips, with my life, my love for Him. So there I was, chopping a sweet potato, declaring my love for the only one who will ever satisfy my soul. It was one of the sweetest moments I’ve experienced. I gave my love to the one who knows me fully, and the one that I will someday fully know.

But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it. But if we have food and clothing we will be content with that. 1 Timothy 6:6&7

Overwhelmed

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The Lord has overwhelmed me with Himself. He has reminded me of His sovereignty. He has reminded me to go about my work with  unhindered JOY; with unhindered devotion. I have wept so much today- He has caught me off guard with His wooing. He has surprised me. I have let my desire for God’s predictability to cease. I have let Him overwhelm my heart with the knowledge of His intimate love. I have not rejected His pursuit. I know that He is worth the risk. He is worthy to have my heart. If all I had to do was sit in His presence I would do so. I will let Him woo me. I will embrace the pursuit of my beloved- I will not forsake His love, His passion. I will let Him love me.