Tag Archives: calling

Green Eggs and Babyproofing.

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I took baby Khlo for her 9 month appointment last week where her incredible pediatrician went casually down the checklist to make sure Khloe was meeting all of her developmental milestones.

“And, you’ve babyproofed, right?”

Immediately, my mind filled with images of rubber-edged tables and zip-tied cabinets.

“Umm….kinda……”

I have the electric sockets covered.  Well, most of them.  I always forget to put them back in after I vacuum.

The cleaning supplies and medicines are higher than Kiara’s reach from her big stool.  Better check that….think she just had a growth spurt.

But every mom knows that no matter how much time and energy spent on babyproofing, your child will find its weaknesses.  And fast.  It’s in our nature to be curious.

“Just make sure the chemicals and medicines are out of the way.  You know about the other stuff.”

Ahh, yes.  I’m a mother of two.  I get to wear the Been There Done That badge with pride.  Moms of 3+, you’re on a whole different playing field.  Hats off to you, my friends.

I’ve done bumps, bruises and profuse bleeding.  And that’s just from my husband.

What any seasoned mother will tell you is that you’ve gotta keep them from the big dangerous stuff and train them not to get into the stuff you don’t want them to.  Let them explore.  They’re going to bump their little heads sometimes.  They’re going to gingerly make their way around and around the coffee table until one day they realize they can pull off and take steps without holding on.  They’re going to put sand in their mouths at the beach and then realize how nasty sand is and stop putting sand in their mouths.  It’s like the motto from my alma mater—-they “Learn by Doing.”

Soo….

Are you playing it safe?

Are you a nominal believer who claims Christ but buffers herself from the idea of living dangerously?

Have you padded every corner, not wanting the sharpness of the gospel to penetrate your heart or to offend those from whom you seek approval?

WHO ARE THOSE PEOPLE!?  Do you dare identify them to yourself?  Could you write down their names?

Do you keep shut tight every storage cabinet that might possibly be opened?  Who knows what one can find lurking in the dark corners back there.  ::shudder::

Do you close off every door of opportunity, afraid of what scary, harmful thing may be on the other side?  He could ask you to sell every single thing you own.  Move your family.  Go somewhere scary.  Step out of your comfort zone.

Would you?  Could you?

Are you willing to risk bumps-on-the-head?

Let’s take it back to the basics.  Remember Sam?

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Sam had a friend.  He would not try green eggs and ham.

He would not, could not here or there.  He would not, could not anywhere.

Not on a boat, not in a tree, not in a car.  Just let him be.

He did not like green eggs and ham.  He did not like them, Sam-I-Am.

Good ol’ Sam.

“You do not like them.  So you say.  Try them!  Try them!  And you may.  Try them and you may, I say.”

::chomp::

“Say! I like green eggs and ham!  I do!  I like them, Sam-I-am!  I do so like green eggs and ham.  Thank you!  Thank you, Sam-I-am!”

Don’t be scared of what you don’t know.

Don’t be scared of what other people might say.

Don’t be scared to bump your head.

Surrender fully to Him. Take the covers off of the sockets and the bumpers off the edges.  Set your sights on the one whose word is a lamp to your feet and a light to your path.

Live dangerously.  Jump in the deep end.

Would you?  Could you?

What keeps you from full surrender?  Who keeps you from full surrender?  What safeguards have you put in place to keep you from living dangerously?

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Exploring Your Calling- Part 3

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It’s quiet in the house right now.  Coffee is brewing.  It’s one of those mornings where I don’t want to turn the light on….just a small lamp for some soft light.  The crows are going at it outside.  It’s just another morning.

My heart has just felt so weird the past couple of days.  Sadness over Be’s passing.  Intense passion about what God’s asking me to do.  Total giddiness over the words and crazy open doors and confirmations and encouragements that are being given to me right now.  An overriding desire so strong that you will GET IT.  That you’ll make that jump and totally surrender yourself to God.  That you’ll just be dissatisfied with where you are.  That your spirit will feel hungry and you’ll have an overwhelming desire to feed it.

You guys, I’m nothing.  I’m just a girl from podunk who knew the truth and royally screwed it up anyway.  Who looked for attention in all the wrong places.  Who measured her own behavior by those around her instead of by what God said was acceptable.  Who claimed to know Him but never spent any time with Him.  Who had wake up call after wake up call after wake up call before she finally got it, and by then had a laundry list of junk to deal with.  But you know what, He’s been so good to me in all of it.  He was patient with me.  And He led me out.  He brought me to a place of surrender.  He’s searching my heart and dealing with my junk (stuff that I didn’t even know I had).  And I get it.  I’m learning His nature.  I know His voice.

I can’t sit here and tell you what God wants you to do.  If you want to know what He wants you to do, you’re gonna have to start walking with Him.  Getting in tune with the Spirit.  Start saying yes to the things He’s telling you to do, and all of a sudden you’ll hear Him more and more and more.  Be faithful with a little and He’ll entrust you with more (Luke 16:10).

A couple nights ago I was working in the office and I remembered something.  When we moved into this house, we had new carpet put in.  Casey ripped out the nasty, cat-stuff-soaked carpet and pad and bleached everything.  Before the carpet guy came I got a Sharpie and my Bible and went around the house writing verses on the concrete.  A sure foundation for us to stand on.  I’d forgotten some of the verses that I wrote, so I opened my iPhoto and found the pictures that I took (knowing that I would forget).  In the office, where I sit and type to you, is this:

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See, I can do some planting and watering.  I can tell you what works.  I can tell you 100,000 times to read your Bible like you inhale.  Pray like you exhale.  I can thump my Bible and SCREAM IN CAPS LOCK, get bold in bold, emphasize in italic.  But Jesus said “No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him” (John 6:44).  I guess that’s the faith part.  I have to believe that I’m not doing all of this for nothing.  That God’s word won’t return void (Isaiah 55:11).  That it will draw you to Him.

I can tell you that you have to be saved.  That He’s already made you holy so you better act like it. That He has a good plan for you.  That you “are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God has prepared beforehand, that (you) should walk in them.” (Eph 2:10).  But I can’t make you GET IT.  That’s His job.

Would you just spend some time in prayer now?  Ask God to search your heart.  Ask Him to give you more of His Spirit.  Then listen to Him when He tells you what to do.  When you start to really do that, it gets addicting.  You feel so alive, so chosen when you’re walking with Him that you start saying GOD, okay, now what!?  Now what!?  Let’s do some more, let’s grow some more, give me MORE OF YOU.

I’m just a woman reading my Bible and praying and realizing more and more how much I need Him.  And you need Him.  Respond to HIM, girl!  Live out your calling.  Make your life COUNT, not safe.  Talk to EVERYONE about Jesus.  Let them know Him by your life.  Let your kids know Him by your life.  Let the guy at the grocery store know Him by your care.  Fall in LOVE with the one who made you and let that LOVE ABOUND more and more.  Let God GROW you and push you and chasten you and heal your wounds that you didn’t even know you had.  ABIDE in Him and stop being fake about it.  Confess your sin and idolatry and burst your safe little bubbles.  And I’ll do it with you.

Well, have a nice day!

HA!

XO

Exploring Your Calling- Part 2

Haaaaappy New Year!  

I hope you all had a great time celebrating last night.  I actually DID make it to midnight after 4 glasses of Martinelli’s!  Whoo!  I rang in 2013 with a bang- changing a poopy diaper.  However, I did get a great New Year’s Kiss from my man!

For all who are joining me in the Daily Bible Reading Plan, here is the link once again.  I hope you enjoyed your first day!  If you are joining me and haven’t already let me know, shoot me a note on the “contact” page so I can pray for you.

Yesterday we talked about the first step in exploring our calling– realizing that we can’t know who WE really are without knowing who HE really is.   This begins with Salvation.

So, He saves us, and then what happens?  What do we do?  The next piece in the puzzle of our “calling” is pursuing holiness.  God has called you to be holy.  “But you, man of God, flee from all this, and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, endurance and gentleness.  Fight the good fight of the faith.  Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called when you made your good confession in the presence of many witnesses.  In the sight of God, who gives life to everything, and of Christ Jesus, who while testifying before Pontius Pilate made the good confession, I charge you to keep this command without spot or blame until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Tim 6:11-14).

This “good confession” is the one we make when we are saved.  Romans 10:9 says “if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.”  So salvation comes from faith (which is a gift of God), followed by a spoken confession of your belief.  After that, Paul tells us to charge forward, fight a good fight, and take hold of the life that Jesus died for.  The one that we are called to live.  The one that we are supposed to keep without spot or blame until Jesus comes back (and He is coming back) again.  How do we take hold of this life?  We flee from “all this,” which in chapter six says is false doctrine, ungodly teaching, conceit, envy, strife, malicious talk, evil suspicions, constant friction, and love of money.  We flee from all ungodliness.  We RUN from sin.  We sprint toward godliness.  What is your run looking like?  Are you stopping to smell the roses?  Are you going for a leisurely jog?  Are you running in the wrong direction?  Or are you using that Olympic-level strength that He’s blessed you with to press on toward the finish line?

You’ve been called to holiness.  You’ve been commanded to fight a good fight.  “Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize?  Run in such a way as to get the prize.  Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training.  They do it to get a crown that will not last; but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.  Therefore I do not run like a man running aimlessly; I do not fight like a man beating the air.  No, I beat my body and make it my slave” (1 Cor 9:24-25).  I just LOVE this.  Paul’s saying, look, when you’re in a race, you don’t run around all over the place.  When you’re in a fight, you don’t just throw blows into the air.  No, you beat your body into submission and you make it work for you.  You use everything you’ve got in you to win the thing!

On Thanksgiving this year, our whole extended family had a very sophisticated and elegant evening followed by an intense arm-wrestling tournament.  Now, when you arm-wrestle, you have to put every single ounce of focus you’ve got into pressing against the opposing force, who is doing the same.  Loved one, you can bet your enemy is using everything he’s got to pin you down.  Plus, he plays dirty.  YOU, however, have been given much more inherent strength.  But if you don’t use all of your might to focus that strength, to press against your opponent, your arm is going to start falling back.  Press into Him, the One who gives you strength (Phil 4:13), and play to win.  Cheaters never prosper.  But if you want to win, honey, you’ve got to play the game!

Enjoy 1/1/13!!

XO

Exploring Your “Calling”- Part 1

Happy last day of 2012, girls!  Wow….THAT went fast.  It’s unbelievable to me how much faster things move the older we get.  I remember my 7th grade teacher telling me that it’s because as you get older, 1 year becomes a much smaller fraction of your life.  When you’re 5, one year is just one-fifth of your life…but when you’re 30, it’s one-thirtieth.  Sorry about the late blog post today, little Khloe’s got an ear infection and this mama was up aaaaaalll night long.  Yay!

So many of the e-mails and messages from you all have had to do with “calling.”  I think that deep inside each one of us, we have this desire to do something for God, to have some sort of mission and purpose.  I’ll hear things like “I just wish God would tell me what He wants me to do” or “I just want to know what my purpose is.”  That’s good, and I would say it’s something that He’s written on each of our hearts.  The Bible talks about how we are all different parts of one body, so I guess each of us are screaming out, “am I an EAR?  A BIG TOE?  An EYELASH?  A HEART VALVE? WHAT!?”  And then something like this happens– we see one of the other body parts next to us go, “Ahhh.  Thank you Lord.  You made me a nostril.  I am a nostril.”  And we get kind of this weird jealousy about it, are you with me?  It’s a good jealousy, though, we just want whatever it is they figured out.  And then we start thinking, “well, maybe I’m a nostril, too.  I can smell just as good as she can.  Yeah, that’s it.  I am a nostril.  I am called to be a nostril!” when really you are a lung, but because you’re caught up in thinking you’re a nostril, God finds a different lung to use.

SO you might be asking, why doesn’t God just tell me what it is He wants me to do?  Well, I know for a fact that God is good and loves you like crazy (John 3:16), He’s not cruel and He’s not trying to keep you from fulfillment.  The exact opposite, actually…Christ said “I came that they might have life and have it abundantly” (John 10:10).  The problem is not in Him, it’s in us.

We want the “ME” without the HIM.

Just tell ME what I have to do.  I want to know what it is that you have for ME.  What’s MY calling?  What’s MY purpose?  We should be asking- How can I know YOU?  Teach me to know what YOU’VE done.  What are YOU doing?  Now, these questions aren’t something that you just force yourself to ask God.  These come from a heart that realizes how destitute it is without Him.  How broken it is without Him.  How evil it is without Him.  They flow out of a heart that preaches the gospel to itself daily.  One that can’t wait to meditate on Him daily, hourly, minute-by-minute.  One that is saturated in the GRACE that He poured out on you when he let his own son be destroyed so that you could have a relationship with Him.  But no, we want to know more about US!

If you want to know your calling, here’s where we begin.  You’re not going to know who YOU are until you know who HE is.  You’re not going to know what YOU are supposed to do until you realize what HE has already done.  Now, we’re going to look at this in sections, because it’s a long topic, but for today I want to share this with you.  First thing that you’ve been called to is SALVATION.

Ephesians 1:4-8 says, “For he (God) chose us in him (Jesus) before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight.  In love he predestined us to be adopted as his sons through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will–to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves.  In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace that he lavished on us with all wisdom and understanding.”

If you’re reading this and don’t know if that’s you, let me just tell you that an unbeliever is dead in his transgressions, and death can’t choose life, it’s dead!  So if your heart is being stirred, I want you to know that the Holy Spirit is working in you–God is wooing you, calling you to life in Him.   If you’re a believer already and your heart is being stirred, maybe those embers that you’ve been quenching are starting to fan into a little flame action.  And if you’re a believer who’s on fire right now, well you’re just amen-ing your way through this anyway.  Just a little extra fuel for you.

So before the beginning of the world, God chose you in Christ Jesus.  He loved you so much that He sent His only Son.  All you have to do is believe in Him, and even then, that belief is a gift from God, it’s not something that you’ve mustered up.  It is by grace that you have been saved (Eph 2:5).  If you have any questions about salvation, or if you aren’t sure whether you’re saved or not, I’d love to talk with you about it.  Send me a little message through the “contact” link and we can chat.  Otherwise, remind yourself of this truth everyday.  Don’t let a day go by that you don’t remember where it is you’ve come from and what He’s done for you–you’re liable to get too busy and forget who you are.

‘Til tomorrow then!  Hopefully I will make it to 12 to pop my Martinelli’s.  (note:  I have nothing against a little glass of champagne.  However, this nursing mama’s got a sick baby on antibiotics who’s wanting to nurse all night long, and I’m neurotically cautious.  No biggie though, I really do love me some Martinelli’s!)  Looks like I may be on New York time tonight!  Happy New Year!!

*********A few of you have contacted me about doing a “read the Bible in a year plan.”  I think that is a GREAT idea, and I’m going to do it with you!  I have an awesome reading plan that is actually in the back of Casey’s Bible that he did this year and loved it!  If you are interested in the BEST New Year’s Resolution EVER, reading your Bible everyday, you can find the reading plan HERE! And let me know if you’re doing it with me!!*********