Friday, August 28, 2009


This week my Gather and Grow group started our next Bible Study. We're working through Jennifer Rothschild's study called Walking by Faith: Lessons I Learned in the Dark. For our "ice breaker" question we asked each lady to tell us about a favorite place they've walked or enjoy walking in. The responses covered everything from walking down the isle to get married, to walking in parks and enjoying God's creation, to the walk they made to receive Christ. I talked about a walk I took with my family last summer to see Black Beach in Maui.

Black Beach is a stop on the "Road to Hana" drive in Maui. You pull into this park area at the top of a mountain and then you take a pretty steep walk down to the actual beach. We took a picnic and ate some lunch before tackling the walk that day. But once we got down to the surf, it was amazing and so worth the trek. It's called "Black Beach" because the surf and beach side are full of black rocks, actually lava rocks. The rocks that are on the beach front are jagged and tough on your feet. But once you reach the edge of the water, the rocks are smoother and smaller. They've been tossed in the ocean enough to wear off the rough edges. Your feet feel like they're getting a constant's awesome! Defintiely one of my favorite memories from our vacation.

After I left the study this week, I couldn't help but think about how I almost missed this experience. The walk seemed so far and steep. The children might fall. We had so much more to see. The rocks on the beach front were killing our feet. All these things that I could see could have kept me from an amazing experience. All these things that I could see could have kept me from an amazing display of God's creation. I was almost blinded by my own sight.

God's word teaches us that we live by faith, not by sight. (2 Corinthians 5:7) Today be encouraged. Don't let what you see keep you from experiencing God's blessings.

Here are just a few of our pics from that day. Enjoy.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Gripped by His Glory

Several of the churches in our area are currently doing a series called "United". It is so encouraging to know that I can walk in the door of any of these churches and feel at home; a part of God's kingdom united by His glory. During the service this week, Mike, our pastor, talked about the fact that God has a grip on us and He never lets go. Sometimes we walk away from that, but God never lets us go.

At the end of the service, Chris Boggess came up and said something that has really resonated with me this week. Chris reminded us at the end of the service that what connects us as a kingdom of believers is not the "thing" we walk away from God to do, but the "grip" of God that never lets us go. It's all about God and His glory not our story.

This week I met with a group of women who go to different churches, who have different spheres of influence, who have different calls to ministry. The journeys we are on reach far and wide. The sweetest thing was knowing that we are connected by God's glory-the desire to make Him known wherever we are. That God would allow us to have an impact in His kingdom is a testament to His grace and mercy-not our stories.

I needed the reminder-thank you Jesus.

"For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do." Ephesians 2:10

Thursday, August 13, 2009


How do you respond to storms, specifically the storms that come in your life? You know the things that happen and cause us to fret, to worry, to act differently than we normally would. Do you work harder, keep longer hours? Do you stop eating or like me eat way too much? Do you lose sleep or sleep more than usual? Or maybe you try to calm the storm by fixing everything? But what if God's plan is for you to weather the storm? What if He wants to take you through it? Maybe you come out a little battered, a little bruised, but very much aware of who your Deliverer is.

This morning I read Acts 27 during my quiet time. It's about a real live weather storm, a northeaster that causes a shipwreck. The Apostle Paul is a prisoner on the ship and for the most part the captain nor the crew will listen to him. As they grow more and more fearful in the storm, the crew begins to dump cargo and even the ship's gear. In verses 21-26, Paul tells them of God's promise to save them, all of them, and to deliver Paul to stand before Caesar. Oh and by the way, God also says they'll be shipwrecked on an island!

In verses 30 and 31, the sailors decide to try and leave the ship on the lifeboats. But Paul reminds them of God's promise; they'll be saved only if they stay on the ship...yeah the one that's going to be shipwrecked! So they cut the lifeboats loose. In the next few verses, Paul encourages the crew to eat. They have been so worried that they haven't eaten in two weeks. Again Paul reminds them that not one of them will perish. Then it happens; shipwreck. They hit a sandbar and the waves and wind begin to break apart their vessel. The storm was relentless. How would they survive? In verses 40 & 41, the crew was told to jump over and swim to shore. Those that couldn't swim hung on to pieces of the ship until they could be helped to land. Everyone survived, just as God promised they would.

I can't help but think that it's a good thing they ate! Had they not, they would've been too weak to make it to shore. What if they had gotten in the lifeboats? If the storm was bad enough to rip apart the vessel, what would it have done to the lifeboats? Today this makes me want to choose to respond differently to life's storms. I want to remain anchored to God's promises and to be ready for my deliverance even if it means swimming through the storm. What about you? I'd love to hear how you weather the storms of life with God?

"Don't worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God's peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus." Philippians 4:6-7

Sunday, August 9, 2009


Happy Birthday to my hubby, Steve! I hope you have the best day ever.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

He Spoke at She Speaks

I'm back and She Speaks was awesome. As I promised in my last post, today's post is going to be all about how God spoke at She Speaks to me.

For about a month before the conference I began to pray and fast. One word kept coming to the forefront of my time with God- Connections. My prayers centered on making connections at the conference. Connections for me, connections through me, connections with me, just simply asking God to make me aware of how my being at the conference would make a difference in this thing I'm doing called ministry. You see the last few months I had spent a lot of time writing a proposal to be pitched at She Speaks. Because I was somewhat clueless about the process, the isolation I felt while writing left me feeling lonely. And I am a people person!! And one of my most favorite things to do in life is to make connections! So here is a list; a long list of how my sweet Jesus showed off at She Speaks. Enjoy.

  • Friday night I'm on the elevator by myself. It stops and on walks two ladies and I realize one of them (saw her name tag) was a friend of a friend from home. Earlier this summer my friend had asked me to keep an eye out for her. This may seem insignificant to you, but in a hotel filled to capacity, 600 women attending the conference, hotel staff and the size of the hotel…there's no way it is a coincidence that we found each other.
  • Saturday morning we go down for breakfast and it's a crazy room packed full of women. As we begin to look for a place to sit, I spot someone I think I know. You have to understand that I've not had coffee and I don't see well in low lighting. So I throw caution to the wind, and call out her name (o-k… I yelled!) And sure enough, LJ was in the house…So much fun to see Lisa there. Again, only God can pull that off in a room so full and crazy.
  • Saturday morning-I had to leave a few minutes before the end of a main session for a publisher appointment. The speaker was Wendy Pope and I so wanted to meet her. I have a Gather and Grow group and she is the coordinator. As I rounded a corner on my way to the appointment, Wendy comes out of the session. We met, we hugged and she encouraged me for my appointment like crazy! After my appointment, I'm headed down the hall way for my next session in a daze! Who's in the hallway? Wendy Pope and Amy Carroll. They were so excited for me when I shared that the publisher liked my proposal and took it!
  • A publisher taking the proposal was huge for me. I've never written anything for a proposal and could not believe how gracious God was to me. This little girl from the middle of nowhere with no formal training was just riding on the wings of my sweet Jesus.
  • I had a second publisher appointment that night. As I sat waiting, a beautiful young woman came and sat next to me. We began discussing our proposals and I was able to tell her about someone I met earlier this year who is looking for exactly what she was doing! Oh sweet Jesus, we ran out of time before we could exchange names. It was my time to go in and I quickly tossed my business card to her and said CONTACT ME! That sounds rude, but I know this was God. Her proposal is so unique and wanted by my contact. This was probably the sweetest moment I had at She Speaks, because it had nothing to do with me or my calling. Just connecting someone else to help them.
  • My second publisher meeting was late in the afternoon and the meeting went well, but the outcome was a defining moment for me. They really liked my proposal, said it was solid, but they couldn't take it. They had just contracted someone else with a similar project. The meeting ended on a great note of encouragement, but I truly wanted to cry or throw up! When I went outside my sweet friend Dorilee was waiting for me. She sat with me and we talked for a second and then God opened my eyes to the possibilities. I felt the Holy Spirit began to say to my heart, if they're publishing something similar then there must be a need. Someone else will want it too. So I walked up to Sheila (she was coordinating the appointments) and asked her if she thought there was anyone left who would want to look at my proposal. She very graciously asked all the publishers and agents there. She was able to get me in to see one more agency. THEY TOOK MY PROPOSAL TOO! God was showing off in a big way and I could barely contain my emotions.
  • Later that night I was standing in line to meet Jennifer Rothschild (oh my word) with some of my friends. We starting talking to the ladies behind us and one of them had self-published their book through an agency that we wanted to know more about. So while we stood in line, she shared her experience, gave us advice, answered our questions and just helped us understand that process so much better.
  • One of my friends wanted to meet and speak with Van Walton. I knew what she looked like, but had not been able to find her. Sunday morning we are on a packed elevator headed down for breakfast. The elevator stopped on another floor and I hear the lady in the front say "Come on Van, we'll make room!" I peek around the corner and say to my friend, that's Van, that's her…go get her! So when the elevator stopped, she and Van connected. Van was so gracious and spent time answering her questions and giving her advice.


    There were 599 other women in attendance at She Speaks. This is only a small bit of what God did this past weekend…just my experience. But for what it's worth, there is no other place I would have rather been or no other way I would have wanted to spend the money. If you were there, I would love to hear about your experience. If you've never been, mark it on your calendar for 2010…July 30-August 1.