Monday, May 31, 2010

a time for everything

my reading today landed me in Ecclesiastes 3

There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven:
a time to be born and a time to die,
a time to plant and a time to uproot,
a time to kill and a time to heal,
a time to tear down and a time to build,
a time to weep and a time to laugh,
a time to mourn and a time to dance,
a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
a time to embrace and a time to refrain,
a time to search and a time to give up,
a time to keep and a time to throw away,
a time to tear up and a time to mend,
a time to be silent and a time to speak,
a time to love and a time to hate,
a time for war and a time for peace. (1-8, NIV)

... He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also planted eternity in men's hearts and minds [a divinely implanted sense of a purpose working through the ages which nothing under the sun but God alone can satisfy], yet so that men cannot find out what God has done from the beginning to to the end.
I know that there is nothing better for them than to be glad and to get and do good as long as they live; And also that every man should eat and drink and enjoy the good of all his labor -- it is the gift of God. I know that whatever God does, it endures forever; nothing can be added to it nor anything taken from it. And God does it so that men will [reverently] fear Him [revere and worship Him, knowing that HE is]. (11-14, amplified)

While I sit and wonder how long a foundation takes ... it takes as long as it takes. And my job is not to worry about how lonog - but to do my part . God has a plan. Gods time is not my time (that I am certain!) I continue to work finding peace with God as I discover, accept and appreciate God's perfect timing.
He works on me daily to leave behind my despair, rebellion and moving ahead without his advice. I am continually reminded "HIS time, not mine"

In verses 11-14, not only have I just been reminded that there is a time for all things ... but that God has a plan that I can not even BEGIN to grasp. My life, my time is just one small part of the plan - and I receive that gift.

Today, this morning I am going to work in the flower beds. I love having perennial flowers - each a transplant from friends and co-workers. Only a few actually purchased at the store ... but in addition to the perennial flowers I seem to have perennial weeds.

What a perfect visual that I need to continue to cultivate the soil in my heart and take account what is growing there. The physical activity of pruning and weeding will open my heart to the Lord - I pray that the Lord will be with me today and help me get rid of anything that is not of him that may have taken root in my heart.


Sunday, May 30, 2010


what is the proper time for a foundation to be built?
i suppose it depends on the structure you are planning to build ...

in my reading today:
The end of a matter is better than its beginning and patience is better then pride. Ecclesiastes 7:8.

My Life Application Study Bible broke it down like this: To finish what we start takes hard work, wise guidance, self-discipline and patience. Anyone with vision can start a big project. But vision without wisdom often results in unfinished projects and goals.

I am declaring that I while I am tired and weary, there is a huge foundation being built ... both seen and unseen. All these "projects" that I have been working on are all part of a greater foundation, and patience is better then pride. I work in expectation of the end - beyond anything that I can begin to imagine ...

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

so how long will this foundation season last ...
The foundation of the Kingdom is beyond my comprehension.
I pray for wisdom and peace as I continue in the work HE has created for me - through HIM I can do it.Lord, please help me to stay focused on the task at hand, not to be distracted by other opportunities that would take me away from what you have planned for me.
I am also prayerful that as the foundation is laid, HE will continue to bring workers forward to come alongside for the work to be done.


Friday, May 28, 2010

His will ...

this week i have been working through a decison ... I am dealing with hearing from the Lord what HIS will and desire is for me... I am not certain if adding a new project to my list is part of His plan - or if it would just add more to my plate.

This new project is very desirable to me, and I really want to say yes ... but I am struggling with if saying yes is for the right reason.

Today ... this was the centering scripture of an email devotion I recieved:
"Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit but in humility consider others better than yourselves" Phillippians 2:3

As I consider the reasons why I would say YES ... i am being convicted now that it is for selfish reasons, and while in the short term it would be a way for me to feel good about myself. But adding more to my plate at this time - would potentially be divisive to Urban Ministry, Brookside Church and most importantly my marriage. Even if just for a short season.

As I continue to work to stay the course that the Lord has for me, learing to say NO is one of them. Saying NO now, does not mean saying NO forever. Now just might have been the time to plant the seed, only to be cultivated at a later time.

Such peace comes when seeking the Lord for counsel, listening and following HIS will.

Thursday, May 20, 2010


this blog entry was started last THURSDAY 5.20

we all have baggage ... some big heavy bags, multiple bags, bags with wheels, or just dragging it along behind. However we choose to carry our baggage with us - one thing that is for sure it always comes with us. And the glory of it all, we have our Brothers and Sisters to help carry us and our bags.
We are told to cast our burdens on HIM.
I saw the face of Christ over and over last night, I saw us each carrying other peoples bags. They begin to get mixed up, they become each others - we are in community. no one bag seems too heavy - because they are shared.

Last night at Brookside Church was one of my most amazing nights. It was very difficult and at the same time redemptive. The Glory of God permeated the church through HIS servants last night. Love always wins!
Today, 5.24 I looked back at my journal entry for 5.19 (last wednesday)
Father you are so good and use all things for your good and perfect plan - thank you!
I desire, Lord, to look like Jesus --- when I interact, do people leave feeling like they "saw" Jesus in me? I have been looking for him in others, I tend to see him regularly all around - do others see him in me?
my daily reading took me to various Proverbs ...
As water reflects a face, so a man's heart reflects the man. 27:19
To do what is right and just is more acceptable to the Lord than sacrifice. 21:3
The crucible for silver and furnace for gold, but man is tested by the praise he receives. 27:21
But he who trusts in the Lord will prosper. 28:25b
Let love and faithfulness never leave you; bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart. Then you will win favor and a good name in the sight of God and men. 3:3,4

As I reflect back to last wednesday night at the church ... he prepared me ... and gave me an opportunity to look like HIM. I will never really know if I did or not - which is fine. I am so thankful as I look back that I was given an opportunity.
I need to start keeping roll of prayer requests and desires ... so I can be witness to HIS hand in my life - over and over. HE is so darn good!!
I am so certiain LOVE WINS!
thank you JESUS for going to the cross, dying for me before I knew I even needed you, then for rising on the 3rd day, to be with me always.

I am entering this week in glorious expectation of all HIS goodness ...


Thursday, May 13, 2010


wow, i continue to have a hard time finding the time to sit and write this blog. not to place the "blame" in aaron - but between the work with Northview Urban Ministry & Brookside Church the time spent on the computer is creating documents and answering email. the best part ... i love it, i am truly enjoying the work that i am able to do in partnership with my husband. i cannot imagine my life different!

while i am finding it hard to find time to sit and write ... i am thriving!

from joel:
scripture: "Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in health, just as your soul prospers" 3John 1:2
joelandvictoria: Many people today are living in "survival mode". If they can just make it through the day, they've accomplished their goal. And, there are the times when circumstances can seem overwhelming. There are seasons that are more difficult than others. But God doesn't want us to just survive, HE wants us to thrive. HE wants us to prosper in all things.
One definition of the word thrive means "to realize a goal despite circumstances." That means you can prosper in all things no matter what is going on around you. You don't have to settle for an average year; you can have an extraordinary year. You may be planning on just getting by but God is planning on abundance. HE's planning on overflow. It's time to get into agreement with God. It's time to get in agreement with God. It's time to walk in HIS ways. It's time see your dreams come to pass. It's time to thrive because God has a plan for you to prosper in every area of your life!
prayer: Father God, thank YOU for the gift of today. I choose to cast my cares on YOU knowing that because YOU care about me,YOU care for me. Help me to see the good plan YOU have for me so that I can thrive the way YOU intended. In Jesus' Name. AMEN


Tuesday, May 4, 2010

A dose of reality

Yesterday afternoon I had a dose of reality, when I stopped by to visit Oak Lawn Memorial Gardens - last month Aaron and I finally made the arrangements for Jeremy's marker.
I had certainly put if off long enough, there was no urgency from Aaron either ... We placed the order at the beginning of April, but did not know when it would be ready or placed.

Following a meeting at Capstone yesterday, while on my way to Aldi's ... I had the overwhelming urge to go check on Jeremy. I have not been to cemetery much since the funeral ... and until yesterday have not had any inkling to go.

I was not at all expecting the rush of emotions that followed when I saw his name, his birthday, our scripture ... all in Bronze, mounted on granite, recently set in place.

The scripture at the bottom, is from Psalm, 127:3b ... Children are a gift from the Lord.

It is still hard for me wrap my head around the fact that Aaron and I have a baby, he lived with us for 71 minutes - seeing Jeremy's marker provided a dose of reality that I have not been willing to grasp. The reality of Jeremy, his birth and death hit me like I was not expecting. Everything seemed so real. There in stone and metal was my sons name, marking that he had lived with us, ever so briefly - but he had been here. Then I was flooded with the reality that he is with Jesus. Then peace. I thank the Lord that HE continues to offer Peace that surpasses all understanding.

Visiting Oak Lawn also provided perspective on the projects i am involved with. While I want to do an excellent job and create quality programs ... Serving the Lord trumps everything. Visiting Jeremy yesterday, helped me to also slow down. My mind let go of all the "stuff" running through regarding my various responsibilities ... what a blessing.

From Joel Today ...
What's Your Part?
Scripture: "But how can they call on him to save them unless they believe in him? And how can they believe in him if they have never heard about him? And how can they hear about him unless someone tells them? And how will anyone go and tell them without being sent? (Romans 10:14-15, NLT)
From Joel and Victoria: It's amazing how God can take so many people in the world and set up a plan for us to work together for His purposes to build the body of Christ. We all have a part. One scripture puts it this wast, some plant seeds, some water and some bring in the harvest. No matter what role we have, when we work together, we are honoring God. It pleases Him when we partner with one another to share the good news of the Gospel.
Today, know that you have an important part in the body of Christ. Whether you minister in the pulpit or on the street corner, or whether you sow seed so that others can go, you are important. Don't ever underestimate the part you play because together we are building His kingdom.
Prayer: Father God, I humbly come to You today. Thank You for giving me a part to play in building Your kingdom. I dedicate back to You the resources You have given me. Use me for Your glory. In Jesus' Name. AMEN.

I am only one part.


Monday, May 3, 2010

here i am ...

it has been way to long since i have been able to sit down and actually write a post. here is a return effort! :)

Busy is not really the correct word, because I am certain the work I am doing now will make an impact for the Kingdom - and while i often feel overwhelmed and completely inadequate ... as in past times the Word of the Lord is my strength.

Commit everything you do to the Lord. Trust Him, and He will help you. Psalm 37:5

These are the things I commit to Him:
- Northview Urban Ministry Volunteer Orientation Planning
- KidsGames Planning
- Brookside Church Youth Ministry
- Leadership for the team
- teaching classes
- my 100's of questions on HOW to mobilize 800+ volunteers in Urban Environments
- Cara's Bridesmaid jewelry

Father, I commit these items to YOU - I trust that you have a plan and that you will help and equip me and others to perform your will. Lord, this is all for your Glory - please move me out of that way that your will be done. In Jesus' precious name AMEN!

Last week these 2 scriptures stood out to me ...
the first a reminder about the work I am doing
'Get on with your tasks with a ready spirit, as if you were serving the Master himself and not human beings' Ephesians 6:7
I found myself in multiple situations that I was not honoring God in my actions or words.
This verse has seared my heart - I am in the process of many "tasks" and often find myself focused on the TASK and not the people. I desire for me heart to focus on WHO I am serving (the MASTER) and not completing a task. This is the Lords desire for me ... this is big people - a complete shift.
being aware, eyes opened ... it cannot be ignored.
What now ... what are the next steps? Good question, first step - being aware, second, becoming intentional with my actions and words .... next steps repeat?
* I will continue to seek the Lord for direction*

The second scripture that came up in my daily reading ...
May the favor of the Lord our God rest upon us; establish the work of our hands for us - yes, establish the work of our hands. Psalm 90:17
With this Psalm, I recognize that the Lord is the one that establishes the work, and then extends his favor on that work. This is a Psalm that came across my path 3 years ago when I started creating Jewelry and Beads By Beth ... I read it as the Lord blessing the work that my hands would be creating. I am reminded again - that HE is still pouring out his favor on the work that my hands create - because HE is the one that established the work ... and because HE has established the work, HE will provide the way to complete the work. PRAISE THE LORD!!!!

So again, I commit all to HIM - all that HE established for me. I rest knowing that He promises to be with me ... it might be a tough route, but I rest knowing that the Lord is good and He will be with me. always.