Thursday, June 5, 2014


For we are God's Masterpiece. He has created us new in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things He planned for us long ago.  Eph 2:10

Did you know that you are God's Masterpiece? You are!  He created you... on purpose. No accident.. no mistake.. He created you with a plan for your life.  How awesome and overwhelming that thought is to me.

As I sat down to dig into this verse earlier in the week, the word MASTERPIECE just really held my attention. I started thinking of things the world considers to be Masterpieces... painting, sculptures, works of literature, embroidery, quilts... these wonderful things that are lovingly created by hand.  Usually the creator plans what he or she wants to create.. pulls together needed supplies.. determines steps.. the creator will work a bit.. step back.. make changes.. and continue on until everything is just right.

That is how God is with us.  He planned us.. knit us together in our Mother's womb (see Ps 139).  You may have been told "You were not planned!".. "You were an accident!".. "We did not expect to have another baby!" .. and those things may be true from your earthly parent's viewpoint, but not your creator's.  Elohim.. our Creator God.. planned when and where you would exist (Acts 17:26). You were no surprise to Him.. nor a mistake or unplanned.

And Eph. 2:10 tells us that not only were we planned, but we were planned with a purpose. God has things for us to do.. good things.

I am a quilter. My favorite quilts to make are for babies. I always make the quilt large enough to use into childhood. I envision it covering a wee babe to keep him warm.. spread out on the floor and covered with toys being used a play mat... being dragged around as a special "blankie" by a toddler. I am great saddened when a mom says "That is too pretty to use. I am going to drape it over the chair in the nursery."  I want to scream "NO!  I worked hard on that.. I planned to out.. and made it nice and durable so it could be used."  And then thing is even if the quilt gets worn spots and stains, that's ok!  It's purpose is to be used and loved.

I think God must feel that way about us too. He did not create us to sit and look pretty.. to soak in His Word and be pretty Christians sitting in church full of piety.  No He created us to be used.. to love others.. to teach, share, serve.. to Go and Do whatever it is He has called us to do. And along the way we will get bumps and bruises.. we will be stained by struggle and strife.. and guess what, out earthly body will wear out... and that is OK!  'Cause the Masterpiece we see right now is perishable, but the true Masterpiece we are is in Heaven.. seated with Jesus.. and one day soon we will shed the perishable for the imperishable and see our Creator face to face. (1 Cor. 15) Until then.. get to work! :-)

Friday, February 28, 2014

Store Up

Ps. 119:11 is a verse i memorized a number of years ago with my children.  NIV84 says "I have hidden Your Word in my heart that I might not sin against You."  Wonderful verse! And we are to hide His Word in our heart.

Last night I was reading Ps. 119 in the ESV. That version says "I have stored up Your Word in my heart that I might not sin against You."

The point is the same.. we need to be learning.. memorizing.. God's Word. But I really love the ESV wording.. "Stored Up"  It is a picture of preparation.. of making ready.  

And we don't wait until the panic moment to grab Words and hastily try to learn them, we store up during the "good" times. Proverbs 6:6&8 points the lazy sluggard to look at the ways of the ant. I think the ant's ways apply to learning Scripture and this thought of storing up..

Go to the ant, O sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise....
she prepares her bread in summer and gathers her food in harvest.

Prepares her bread... the Word is our daily bread.  I picture us preparing it by being in it.. reading.. studying..learning it..

And gathers her food... She is storing up during the time of plenty to be ready for lean times.. difficulties.. 

We need to be preparing.. to be in the Word daily, reading it.. studying it.. learning it.. and we need to be gathering it up.. storing it in our hearts knowing we will have it  for the battle we do each and every day with our flesh, the World and an enemy who is relentless in His pursuit.

Monday, February 3, 2014

EXPECT -- 2014 Word of the Year

Most years my Word makes sense to me.. but there are times I am baffled by it. This year's word is one of those times. I started before Christmas praying and seeking for my word. It was hit and miss as I was caught up in the busyness of life which this year included a holiday wedding.  But still.. I was determined to know my word by Jan. 1.  I thought of several .. and they are perfectly good words, but I just never felt they were it.  And then one day Ps. 5:3 popped into my mind.. "In the morning you hear my voice, O Lord. I lay my requests before You and wait in expectation".. and in that moment I thought "Am I expecting God?"

I was rather baffled by that question too.  Expecting Him to what?  Well.. to be present in my life and the world around me.. Expecting Him to do what He says He will do.. to BE who He says He is... Expecting His Word.. His promises to be true...Expecting Him!

And so that is my desire this year.. to live in a state of Expectancy.  When I pray, I Expect God to hear and to respond.  When I claim a promise, I Expect it to hold true.  As I go about life, I Expect to see God.

There are not a lot of verses in the Bible with the word Expect in them but there are 2 that really suit this journey for me. Ps. 5:3 which I mentioned earlier and Micah 7:7 from the New American Standard Bible.. "But as for me, I watch EXPECTANTLY for the Lord. I will wait for the God of my salvation. My God will hear me." What a powerful verse!  What a promise to claim!

I have to add that God is already popping my Word up before my eyes to remind me to Expect Him. I am leading a study at church using Lysa Terkeurst's What Happens When Women Say Yes to God.  Chapter 1 has a line that says "Women who say yes to God expect to see God."  Yep.. we do!


Thursday, January 16, 2014

35,000 Women!!!!

I have shared here before about Proverbs 31 Online Bible Studies. I have been a participant for a year. Actually, I signed up for several before that but never actually followed through and did them!  But last Spring they offered a study called Let.It.Go and the first chapter in the book was something like "God Wants His Job Back".. I knew that study was for me!  I not only signed up for the daily emails from Proverbs 31, I signed up to be in a small group on FaceBook.

I never dreamed I would connect so with ladies I have never met face to face nor that I would get so much from the study. And it didn't stop there.. I participated (with the same group) in What Happens When Women Say Yes to God and A Confident Heart. 2 books I cannot recommend highly enough!

I have been blessed beyond measure with new friends and sisters who encourage me, accept me, love me, challenge me and so much more!

Face-to-face Bible study is great. I lead a group regularly at my church and participate at times with a blended group in my community.  I would never encourage you to give that up if it is a part of your life. But don't think Online Bible Study isn't just a real.. just a viable.  And the thing I love is that it is flexible which I know helps many ladies. I have met ladies who don't have access to "real life" Bible study where they live.. or what is offered doesn't work with their schedule.. or they have small children at home or a spouse and parent with needs that keep them at home.. OBS allows them to connect with other women and dig into the Word.

God using technology to further His Kingdom!  How Awesome is that.

So.. the next study starts up this Sunday, January 19. We will be jumping into Lysa TerKeurst's book Made to Crave. Now honestly, a part of me wants to run from this study. I don't want to deal with my food issues. But I know I need to and I love there is a place for me to do this.. and honestly, I am glad it isn't a face to face study.  That might sound strange, but hear me out.  I know a lot of women will open up here more than they would if they were in a room full of women looking at them as they talk about this issue.  I also know, for me, having my FB group will keep me accountable.  I won't be able to just drop this study when it gets to hard.. to personal.. when it step so my toes!

This is not a weight loss study!  And honestly, it isn't just a food study.  Most women have food issues and body image issues, so it makes sense that we focus on that. But the bottom line is we are made to Crave God and when we Crave anything else above Him, we have an issue.  That Craving can be food.. but it can also be shopping, approval, a man, acceptance, money, stuff, alcohol, etc.

As of Jan. 15, there were 35000 women signed up for this study!  That alone tells me there is a need here!

Why not consider joining us? You can do as little or as much as you want. Sign up for emails only.. join FB group.. participate in ever little event we have. The choice is yours.

For more information on how the study works and to sign up, click the PS31 OBS button on the side of this blog.  Your life will never be the same!

Thursday, November 21, 2013

One of a Kind...

We have all heard that we are each unique.. one of a kind.. but do we really believe that? Many of us feel we are normal.. boring.. nothing special. And even if we are convinced that we are different (which we might not see as a good thing) a lot of us don't want to be.. or at least we live as if we don't. We spend a great deal of time, effort and energy trying to be who the world says we should be.. the perfect woman found in the media.. or next door.. or at your gym (where you are working not so much to be healthy, but to make your body be what we are told is acceptable) or even at church.  We are seldom comfortable in our own skin and accepting of who we are.  But here's the thing... those gifts you have, that personality, those skills, quirks, passions etc. are from God and guess what.. the ones you don't have.. well you don't have them because He didn't give them to you. And not because He doesn't love you.. because you don't need them to fulfill the call.. the purpose.. He has for you life.

In our study of Renee Swope's A Confident Heart, she looks at what makes us who we are. The first thing she tackles are personality types.  She references a book called Personality Plus by Florence Littauer (I plan to read this one soon).  In it, Littauer focuses on 4 personality types. Swope summarizes them in her book. I read over them and knew which one I was. I liked some of the traits.. did not care for others. But I felt certain this was me.

Then an online Bible study friend posted a link to a personalty test based on these 4 types...  ( Personality Test ).. I took it.. spot on what I expected. I am Choleric.. I desire CONTROL.  Anyone who knows me more than 10 minutes knows that to be true.  I am not so much desirous of controlling other folks' lives, but I want to control mine and all that is happening around me that effects me. And for some reason God won't let me! (Aren't we all glad of that!?)

Swope also looks at our Spiritual Gifts and there is a link at her sight to take a  Spiritual Gifts Assessment.. I took it.. but I already knew my Spiritual Gifts from assessments I have taken before and from life.  I am a Teacher and Exhorter (Encourager).

One thing Swope did not cover, but it ties in is Gary Chapman's The Five Love Languages.  My husband and I studied that as a young couple with our LifeGroup and it was life changing.  I am full on Words of Affirmation... I need to hear that you love me.. appreciate  me etc. and any negative word.. even the slightest negative tone.. cuts me to the quick.

Now I am not sharing all this so you can know me.. I have a point. As I was pondering this today... I saw the most amazing links.

Choleric's are natural leaders and confident.  Those are 2 qualities that are greatly needed in teaching.  An Exhorter or Encourager uses words of affirmation to lift up others.  See where I am going here? When God planned me.. before beginning of time.. He said.. this one is going to teach others my Word.. and encourage them to know who they are in Christ and to take me at my Word (those are my 2 greatest passions... and they have been struggles for me in the past.. which is part of those Life Experiences Swope talks about that shape us for the tasks at hand.)  So he wired me to be a leader.. to need words of affirmation so that I would appreciate them and give them.  And even the less than great stuff that goes with my personality type plays into it.  One of the relational challenges for a Choleric is Arrogance (Pride!).  I struggle with that one and find that I must stay prayed up in that area. I believe God made me this way knowing it would keep me tied to Him.. keep me in His Word.

It is fascinating to examine ourselves.. to take these tests.. and then to see how God has woven it all together for a purpose.. a calling.  Ps. 139 talks of Him weaving us together in our mother's womb. I think that weaving included more than eye and hair color, height, etc.  I believe it included giftings, talents, personality traits).  There is not one thing about each one of us that is coincidental or accidental.  So the next time you wish you were more like "her", stop and thank God for making you exactly who HE wanted you to be to do what HE has called you to do.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

My Psalm 136

Love Ps 136.. a great Ps to personalize.. and so I did..

Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good, His love endures forever.

Give thanks to the King of Kings, His love endures forever.

Give thanks to the Lord of Lords, His love endures forever.

Give thanks to Jehovah Shalom.. the Prince of Peace, His love endures forever.

Give thanks to our Rock & Redeemer, His love endures forever.

Give thanks to the one who has a plan for me.. for you.. His love endures forever.

Give thanks to the Sovereign Lord whose ways are higher, His love endures forever.

Give thanks to the One who forgave my sin.. your sin.. His love endures forever.

Give thanks to the One who freed me from a pit of fear, His love endures forever.

Give thanks to the One who provides all I need for life and godliness, His love endures forever.

Give thanks to the One who clothes me in His armor and covers me with His wings, His love endures forever.

Give thanks to the One who give strength and endurance, His love endures forever.

Give thanks to the One who knows me yet loves me anyway, His love endures forever.

Give thanks to Abba Father, the God of Heaven and Earth, His love endures forever.

Friday, November 8, 2013


The Lord will fullfill His purpose for me (Ps 138:8)

He has a purpose for me.

For I know the plans I have for you declares the Lord (Jer 29:11)

For we are God's workmanship created in Christ Jesus to do good works which God prepared in advance for us to do (Eph 2:10)

And He's not done with me yet!

Being confident of this -- He who began a good work in you (in me) will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus (Phil. 1:6)

Thank You, Lord, that You have a purpose-- a plan -- for me... for my life.  I.. my life.. is not by accident or inconsequential.  Before You created me, You prepared good work for me to do.  Show me.. reveal them to me.. in Your time and equip me, Lord, to do them. I am so thankful You are at work in me and not done yet!  I can rest in the assurance that You will finish what You started -- You will bring it to completion.  Thank You, Lord! Amen.