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Worship Warrior Blog

Sharing life lessons I learn along the way….

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October 2015

A Christmas Story for the books….

Screenshot_2016-01-08-10-58-30-1Merry Christmas everyone! As I was sitting here this morning reflecting on the meaning of Christmas, and what sacrifice it really was for God to send Jesus, and the sacrifice it was for Jesus I had to think back to our day yesterday. If you just indulge me for a moment I have quite the story to tell. Let me start at the beginning…..
Tuesday was a busy exciting day as the kids and I did all the last minute things to prepare for our long drive to Sarasota Florida. We left our house around 6:30pm with a little less enthusiasm as the kids were already fighting and we didn’t even make it 5 miles up the road. Needless to say I was at that point that you get to when in a confined space with 4 fighting kids….”Why didn’t I pack some wine?”  Anyway things settled down and we buzzed down the road. We drove in rain the entire way until we hit the Florida line. By noon Wednesday we had made it to our destination. We were exhausted and the last 20 miles talking about who would get the shower first and how a bed would feel so wonderful.  I walked to the front door of our rental house looking for the hiding spot of the key but the key was no where to be found. We checked and rechecked and checked the house number again. Yes we were definitely at the right house. Zach walked around back and found that the back door was opened. I was on the phone with the homeowner when Zach opened the front door with a weird look on his face. He said “I  think someone is already staying here.”  WHAT?! this couldn’t be. I was waiting for a call back from the homeowner hoping he was going to say we were a little early and they were coming to clean up and leave. We all had to use the bathroom so we did only to find water in the tub and toiletries all over the sink. I started at this point getting the feeling these people were here to stay. We got the call that there was a mixup and they thought we were coming next year. Oops! The homeowner felt awful.  We were so tired! I tried to tell the kids and mostly myself that we will one day look back on this and laugh but today is NOT that day. Thankfully there was another apartment that my mother in law and sister in laws were staying in close by that we could go to because they hadn’t arrived yet. We had the option to stay there but we then we would’ve displaced them and knowing first hand how that felt didn’t think it would be nice. We went there so Kent could at least sleep awhile. I made some phone calls, talked to some strangers, and got taken into a strangers very stinky scary looking house, all in hopes that a place would miracously show up. But alas every “inn” was full. There was no room for all 7 of us. Room for 4, but I just couldn’t get rid of anyone. (Though 300 miles ago I would’ve gladly thrown a couple of them out because the fighting had started back up). Then Kent’s aunt called and said she found a house that the owner wasn’t coming until Tuesday that we could stay in. YAY!! Praise God!! But, its been empty since April and may be dirty….Oh well at this point I didn’t care. We went and looked at it and it didn’t seem to bad. We went back and woke up Kent. He had been blissfully sleeping for 2 hours. When we got a closer look it was waaay dirtier than I thought. Ok who cares right? I’m not afraid of a little dirt, BUT bugs and especially cockroaches……well that’s a whole other thing. The kids all picked bedrooms and when I walked into ours I discovered why they all passed……there were ants and cockroaches everywhere. On the floor, the walls, the windows, and as I carefully pulled back the covers….gasp…in the bed!!!! We got to work cleaning. Found a sweeper and some cleaning supplies. Each time I came across a cockroach my heart skipped a beat. I stripped the bed and washed all the sheets and bedding. By this time I am so tired because I didn’t sleep much on the ride here and had taken my turn driving as well. Kent decided to take the boys grocery shopping and told me to shower and lay down (on another bed of course). He left and I opened up our Rubbermaid tote. ( We had 4 totes that we put on the back of the Expedition on a platform) All of our clothes were soaked. Not just damp, but dripping wet!!! I quickly checked the kids totes, and thankfully they were all dry. I dug out our soaps and shampoo and went to the bathroom. I thought well I don’t have clean dry clothes but at least I can take a warm shower and I’ll figure out what to do after that. A shower will make it all better. I walked into the bathroom and you guessed it….more cockroaches. At this point I calmly picked them up and flushed them. I am to tired to care. I open the shower curtain uh huh, more bugs. I washed them down the drain. Then tried to turn on the shower. The water worked but the shower head did not. Ok well I’ll just take a bath then. Well the drain plug was broken. So as I stand there in my birthday suit in a cold tub, I actually said out loud…ok very loudly…”Are you kidding me?!?!?!?!” Seriously what more could go wrong? So I awkwardly kneel trying to splash lukewarm water on myself and wash my hair. When I’m about 3/4’s of the way done I notice another drain plug behind a bottle of shampoo that was already in the shower. YESSSS! I plug up the hole and sit back to relax as I let the tub fill. And all of a sudden I’m feeling things bump against me. MORE FREAKING BUGS!!!!! There were some between the shower curtains and when the water filled up they had no where to go but in the water and on me. Believe it or not, I didn’t scream, I didn’t move, I just sat there. First time in my life I’ve ever had a bath with so many bug buddies. I think I may have hallucinated from exhaustion at this point because the rest of my “bath” was a bit of a blur. I got out wrapped a towel around my head and body and sit on the edge of my bed waiting for some clothes to dry so I can get dressed. As I sat there I had a heart to heart with God. I had been praying for weeks that this would be an amazing, memory filled vacation. Why was He letting all this happen? Why was it my room and bed that had the bugs, my clothes that got wet, me that had the first bug laden bath? Then I had to think about how Jesus left all His comforts of heaven to come here. His first hours of life were spend in a barn that I’m sure was much dirtier and smellier than my house. He took on all the pain and shame so I wouldn’t have to. And I’m sure He did it willingly and gladly, not shouting while naked in the shower “Are You KIDDING ME FATHER?” So I was a bit convicted and overwhelmed all at the same time. He gave it all, bore it all, and loved so deeply just for me. I wouldn’t have wanted any of my kids to have to sleep in a bug filled room and bed, have wet clothes or take a bath with bugs. I would be paying for therapy to help them overcome that for years to come. No, I gladly and willingly take on the inconveniences so they can enjoy this vacation. Honestly people, I do not make this stuff up!!! I don’t know why the crazy stuff happens to me but it does and I have a choice…I can get mad or I can look at it as a privilege that I get to experience it, so I can learn something and share with you. And hopefully make you laugh a little along the way.  Merry Christmas all from warm, sunny, bug filled Florida!!

PS…we are very thankful for this house!! Its a wonderful blessing.


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The Lord is good….

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“Taste and see that the Lord is good. Blessed is the man who takes refuge in Him” Psalm 34:8

How easy it is to say that God is good when things are hunky dory. But what about when things aren’t going our way or when bad things happen? I am reading a book right now called

Spiritual Maturity by J. Oswald Sanders

There is a line in the book that has been rolling around in my head all day..

“God is most often most active when all seems most still. The daily happenings, whether tragic or joyous, are the raw material from which God is weaving the design of life.”

Our son Jake is 12 years old. He has had health problems and weird injuries his entire life. He should live in bubble wrap. Yesterday we were at a new dr for his knees. He has had knee problems for 2 years. We’ve been in and out of the dr’s office with no real answers. He was told he had arthritis, jumpers knee, Osgood Slater Disease, etc. He was basically told to live with it. 2 weeks ago he hurt his hip. It was hurting him so badly that he had to lift his leg to get in and out of the car. Jake loves to skateboard. He lives to skateboard. Every day he is doing tricks on the equipment that his dad built for him. The dr said yesterday that Jake has some disorder that where his tendons attach to his bones he gets bad inflammation. Most of our bodies repair themselves from the abuse they get everyday while we sleep. Jake’s body can not keep up repairing the damage. So what was happening in his knees is now happening in his hip. The dr believes he can help him but to start Jake is not allowed to skateboard till after Christmas. ( I can not imagine if someone told me I wasn’t allowed to sing or play the piano for months.)  Then he will slowly be allowed to introduce exercise into his routine again and find out at what speed his body will be able to repair itself. Jake was pretty tough in the office but after we got home he completely fell apart. Crying and sobbing and raging. He kept saying “Why does all this bad stuff happen to me? If its not my knees its something else. I pray and ask God to heal me and He doesn’t hear me or answer my prayers!”

What is a mom supposed to say to that? We both sat there and cried. After comforting him and praying with him and sending him to bed, I went to my own bed and had my own conversation with God. I raged a little, but mostly cried for wisdom. In that moment its hard to say that God is good. When your child is in physical and emotional pain everyday for years, its hard to see the good and to see God in it. One thing I was certain of was that I didn’t want that seed of bitterness and anger that Jake expressed to take root in his heart. I prayed that God’s love would pour over him and that he would feel God’s presence as he got ready for bed and slept. This morning as I was stumbling around the kitchen in my morning fog the Holy Sprit gave me words of encouragement for Jake.

“Even Jesus was asked to walk through hardship and pain. He pleaded with God to “take the cup from him” but He endured the pain and He endured the cross.  Aren’t you so thankful that He didn’t shake His fist in the face of God and say “Why aren’t you answering my prayer?? Why do I have to go through this? I am not willing to trust you and trust that ALL things work together for good” What would’ve happened if Jesus would have done that? I don’t know what God’s plan for your life is in 10, 20, 30 years but all of this may just be a time of testing and learning and shaping your character so you are  able to be all that you are called to become, and to really be able to help those you are called to minister to. We will continue to pray and ask God to heal, but in the meantime we will ask God to show us what character He is trying to build in you. “

After I finished talking he looked at me with his baby blues, leaned over and gave me a hug and said “Thank you mom! I am glad that Jesus died on the cross. I will try and have a better attitude about this.”

Oh to have childlike faith. I am still learning to be able to say no matter what “God is Good all the time!!” I just ask Lord that you would stir our hearts to have childlike, blind faith. That no matter what, we can say in the midst of it all “I do not understand this at all. It hurts, it’s hard, it stinks. But because I know that you only want what’s best for me, I choose to trust you God and I choose to say you are good all the time!!”

“You is loved. You is beautiful. You is important!”

The school debate…

So I have been asked why we don’t send our kids to Christian school. Why don’t you invest in their education? You have money for what you want, if you can afford a beach house you can afford Christian school, they are exposed to terrible influences everyday, they are not getting taught the Bible, they are being taught about evolution, sex etc, etc, etc. Now those are all valid points and I spent time thinking about it and asking the Lord what He thought. First let me preface this by saying I am not judging ANYONE on how they educate their kids. Public, private, homeschool….they are all great options. Each family is unique, each child different. But here’s why we chose to send our kids to public school. It was NOT motivated by money. One of our kids did go to private school for 4 years. We felt at the time that was what was best for her. We are called to live in the world but not of it….so what in the world does that even mean or look like? I want to protect my kids, I want to keep them in a bubble surrounded by gumdrops and rainbows and keep them from the bad of this world, but lets face it that is not really even practical unless I live on a remote island somewhere with no electronics. That is not an option, though the tropical weather 365 would be pretty darn awesome. So back to the question how can I send my kids to horrible no bad public school? Sure there is bad in the school, there are unbelievers as teachers, they are surrounded by bad kids, they hear bad words, they hear bad music, they are challenged everyday to think about their beliefs. That is what I want my kids to do. I want them to think about why they believe what they do. I want to have the hard conversations with my kids about drinking, drugs, sex, porn, abuse, about kids whose parents aren’t really involved, etc. I want my kids to learn what compassion is, have the strength stand up for their beliefs, their God, the kids next to them being bullied. I want my kids to ask God the hard questions. I want them to be passionate about what is being taught to them in church and at home about God. I want them to believe not because I tell them but because they take the truths and hide them in their hearts where it takes root and grows into convictions. Their convictions..not mine. The conviction that the Holy Spirit laid on their hearts. We are called to love the hurting in this world to be a light. But if we constantly are stuck in our own little religious bubbles how are we to do that? My kids have prayed with and led people to the Lord at such a young age. They are little warriors for Jesus. Have they been influenced by the bad? Yup. Have they made stupid choices? Yup. But they are the wiser and they have a testimony now to help others who are facing the same temptations. As much as we would like to control each step of our kids lives we can’t. There are some lessons they have to learn the hard way. Its hard more me as a parent to watch. I can’t allow the devil to make me feel like a failure because we have all sinned and come short of the glory of God. When they make mistakes I have a choice…I can berate them or tell them I forgive them and am proud of them for realizing their mistake and making a course correction. When we look at other parents and judge them because of bad choices their kids are making we should have our butts kicked. A kid making mad choices is not a poor reflection on the parents. Basically you are saying that God is a bad parent because we are all His kids and we have ALL messed up. Some more than others. That doesn’t mean God is a bad father. It means He gave us a choice and we made the wrong one. He loves us just the same and He always forgives us and extends His grace and mercy to us again and again and again. So kids who go to public school are not more likely to do bad things and be swayed the wrong way. Whats in their hearts is gonna come out whether they are in public or Christian school. I want to give a shout out to our amazing school and teachers and the families in our school. There are a lot of great people there who love the Lord and love those around them and they are making a difference. So I don’t know if anyone will read this but I felt like maybe there was someone out there in who needed to hear this today. Much love!

“You is loved. You is beautiful. You is awesome!”

Never give up….

IMG_20150915_182607I hung my Spartan metal on my mirror next to my other Spartan metal and my mud run ID number I had to stop and think about what I’ve accomplished fitness wise in the last 10 months. First race was a 5k mud run, second a Spartan Sprint, third a Spartan Super. I did this while fighting Lyme disease and recovering from a hysterectomy. Now I’m not tooting my own horn but I will say this if you knew me 5 years ago before I lost weight I hadn’t been consistent with excerise for awhile. While I liked to work out I wouldn’t push myself to where I was uncomfortable. I would tell myself “I can’t do it!” Then I had a neighbor who started working out with me on a daily basis. She pushed me past what I thought I could do. I worked hard, lost weight, then needed knee surgery. Was out of commission for 4 months. One thing I’ve learned about myself is if I don’t have accountability or encouragement I quickly become discouraged and fall off the wagon. So I joined the Ymca and discovered a whole family of encouragers. That’s how it can be with our spiritual lives. Life can come at ya hard and we can easily become discouraged but the amazing thing we have as Christians is the Holy Spirit. He is our encourager and the one who keeps us sensitive. Thank goodness He is with us all the time. In order to stay spiritually fit we need to daily exercise our faith and trust in God. Just like staying physically fit requires us to daily exercise of our muscles. Both take time and commitment and aren’t always easy or fun. Also I found my body is able to do more than my mind tells me I can. I need to block out the voice in my head saying “I can’t do this. It’s to hard.” And tell myself ” Yes you can!” And also listen to the encouragement of others. Again I see the parallel with my spiritual walk. The devil will constantly be telling you lies about yourself your abilities etc. You need to tell him to shove it and listen to the encouragement of the Holy Spirit and those around you who love you. So, what is it you are allowing the devil to discourage you in and in what way can you physically challenge yourself today?? These lyrics from a Sidewalk Prophets song have been running through my head this morning. Hope you’re encouraged by it!
” Be strong in the Lord and
never give up hope.
You’re gonna do great things
I already know.

God’s got Hand on you. Don’t live life in fear..”

“You is loved. You is beautiful. You is awesome!”

Be still and know….

FB_IMG_1439212470599I’ve done something I’ve never done before. I spent 48 hours by myself at our beach house. I am a person who loves people and who loves action but have been hearing the Lord saying “Be still and know that I am God.” So here I am. Wasn’t sure how it would be or what to expect. It took me a little bit to unwind but when I did well let’s just say Jesus is the best person to spend one on one time with. More than just 15 min in the morning but an entire day focusing in on His voice. Asking and listening. It’s amazing the things He tells us when we really taken the time to listen. I went to the beach yesterday afternoon and walked along the waters edge for 2 hours. For me being by the ocean is the place, besides sitting at my piano that I feel His presence the most. As I watched the waves crash on the shore and listened to and felt their power I was once again reminded that His love and His presence is so much like the ocean. Strong and powerful but soothing and healing all at the same time. As the waves crashed at the shoreline the sand was churning up and looked like a muddy mess but it lasted a second until the shoreline was smooth with the water washing over it. It’s like our lives they can be a muddy mess but if we jump into His presence and allow His love to wash over us He will soothe us and those things in our life the pain, the sin, the disappointments, etc will be washed away. We can make a mess of things so quickly but His love His presence His desire to be in relationship with us is as constant as the waves crashing on the shoreline. You never have to wonder when you go to the ocean if it will be there or if today the waves won’t be washing up on the shore. He is the same yeaterday today and forever. His love for you never changes. You make think He doesn’t care He doesn’t listen or hear your prayers. But have you taken the time to just listen for His voice? Taking more than just 5 minutes a day…not just constantly asking Him for things. He isn’t a vending machine. He desires more than anything to speak His love, His thoughts, His desires, His plans to you. Sometimes He speaks in thunder but mostly whispers quietly those truths into your ear. I encourage you to take the plunge and jump into the ocean of His presence and His love and allow those waves to wash over you. Just you and Him. Put all distractions aside. The man who suffered unimaginable pain, shame and ridicule deserves 100% of your attention attention and affection. Believe me I know how hard it is to unplug and turn off your brain so to speak to all the craziness of our lives and schedules. But I think that is the way the devil keeps us from intimacy from our Saviour. “Be still and know that I am God (Psalm 46:10)….for if you call on my name I will answer!! (Isaiah 58:9, Psalm 91:15) I have loved you with an everlasting love. (Jeremiah 32:3) I am always with you (Matthew 28:20, Isaiah 41:10) I will never leave you or forsake you.” (Dueteronomy 31:6, Hebrews 13:5)
Allow these words and truths to soak into your spirit today!
“You is loved. You is beautiful. You is amazing!”

Loving myself….

So this morning as I was getting dressed for church I was looking at myself in the mirror and started picking out my flaws. Then the Holy Spirit spoke to me. “If you don’t truly love yourself how can you truly love others?” That was all He said. I got to thinking about that. You see I’ve been struggling big time with my self image lately. Struggling with my body my personality flaws just basically all the things I don’t like about myself. My fat jeans are a bit tight, I’m a bit crabby or as my hubby would say “snarky”. Like really, what’s my deal? If I always focus on my own flaws than I will naturally focus on the flaws of others. How can I “Love my neighbor as myself” if I don’t really love myself?? And if I love myself what does that even look like? This is something I’m going to be asking Holy Spirit to show me this week. I am curious about your thoughts on this? Can I really love others while hating myself?

“You is loved. You is beautiful. You is amazing!”

A new adventure….

I’ve been encouraged to start a blog, so here I am. I will be going through all my Facebook posts that I wrote and put them here so everything is all in one place. Then I will be writing whenever I feel inspired to. My goal is to be authentic and real about all the good, the bad, and the ugly in this life of mine. I want to encourage you, make you feel like you’re not alone in your struggles, and help you learn to laugh along the way. Life is so much better when we learn to trust God and have good friends by our side! God bless you all today! Putting my own twist on the the famous saying from “The Help”

“You is loved. You is beautiful. You is amazing!”

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