Archives for March 2015

God Sized Dream Follower

Have you ever had those moments in your life that are so God ordained there is no denying it as a God ordained moment. Maybe you don’t even recognize the full extent of His power and purpose over the moment for months or years after the moment happened.

I had a God ordained moment when I met a boy at age 16; a boy that God had planned to be my husband, a boy that saved me from the certainty of a lifestyle that I was headed for. A lifestyle that would have lead me down the path of college parties, drinking, premarital sex, and the host of negative outcomes that all of that brings-each one taking me further from the Truth and Love of Jesus. Everyday I recognize the blessing that Jesse is in my life, how through him God forever changed my path.

My other God ordained moment would be Him bringing my photography dream to life. I remember walking the isles of Best Buy praying “Lord, do I buy this camera, is it possible? Oh, is it possible that my dream could be on the brink of happening?” I bought the camera that day, I worked to create a successful business that I poured my heart and soul into. A business that I longed for. A business that taught me how to work hard, taught me the importance of prioritizing my work and to-do list and showed me what I risk losing when you don’t have the balance of family first, a business that taught me marketing, and other business skills. I also longed for my own studio, a space to display my artwork that I had created with the talents that God had provided. I longed for a place to welcome families, to cuddle newborns and create images of them that would last a lifetime. God blessed me with every aspect of this dream-even the end of it.

The time had come to say good bye to this dream, I was ready, yet sad it was over. I have celebrated the time it has created for me to pursue my family and for me to transition into another dream. A dream that has been alive longer then even owning my own business. The dream of ministry, to serve and help others grow in their relationships with Christ.

This  brings me to another God moment that began to happen before the business closed. A women’s ministry and youth ministry opportunity. These were both moments that seem to have been for such a short time that it would create the question: “What purpose where they for?” Especially since in the secret places of my heart, I view these as such failures on my part. I’ve begun to think about the time spent in these ministries and see that these dreams were short, yet the growing opportunities for me have been huge. They were opportunities of learning to work close with a team of people for the same goal, how to connect to people so they could learn to go deeper with Him, how to create excitement and passion for the Lord. Opportunities to practice having thicker skin, I’m still working of that lesson. You know the one, that not everything is personal and confrontation isn’t always bad. Please tell me someone else is struggling through that lesson!

These dreams that have come to an end have caused me to reflect on the purpose of our dreams and the work, prayer, tears and sweat that go into making them grow. Dreams that you have birthed, out of nothing into a living breathing something. I recently began to say to the Lord “WHY, why did I work so hard only to walk away?” He laid the answer on my spirit so powerfully that it took my breath away.

That He provided each of these dreams and allowed them to be lived out so HE could reveal to me that HE was in the business of dreams, in the business of making dreams happen. Taking God sized dreams and allowing us to be apart of them. 

See all of these questions come because I have a God sized dream that I’ve had since the summer of 2005. This dream began while at a women’s conference, at a time of my life that I was living selfishly and not focused on the Lord. But as that weekend happened and I watched the speaker, something within my very being whispered “I want that.” A dream that hasn’t diminished, only grown more with each passing year and with each step I take running after God. I have come under attack, viewing especially these God ordained ministry opportunities as failures, as examples of why would you want to pursue this dream because that will only fail too. Whispers that have tried to cover my dream, whispers from the enemy saying “you aren’t worthy, you have nothing to say, no one wants to hear from you.”

Well guess what, the enemy is right, I’m not worthy; but My God is. I have nothing to say; but My God does. No one wants to hear me; but they will want to hear from The Creator. 

God has blessed with me two friends that I’ve come to realize are rare gifts, and that the three of us together are exceptionally rare and will be powerful for the Lord. They too have similar dreams as mine. See, this dream is to be a christian women’s conference planner, public speaker and writer all for the glory of God. Wow, that was tougher to type then I thought it would be. There is something impactful about putting this down where all the world can now hold me accountable. I wouldn’t be surprised if you are reading this thinking that is pretty crazy! But that’s the thing about God dreams, He takes something the world says is crazy, heck even I said it was crazy. I’m the girl that was so shy that I hardly talked to my classmates in school, that hated public speaking, that didn’t go to the state music contest my senior year because too many people would be watching me. God’s response of this crazy dream is, through Me all things are possible, you were created for a purpose, I am with you through all things, I’ve transformed you into a new creation.

So the three of us together are dream followers not just dreamers. We have been given a vision, a God sized dream that we can’t contain anymore. A dream that might make us look crazy, but a dream that if we hold it within us any longer we may burst. A dream that we take one step at a time because the Lord has appointed us as moms and wives first. A dream that will be covered in prayer so won’t you join us in praying for it? A dream that will be directed by the dream provider and not ourselves.Joshua 1:9

I write this today to not only keep myself accountable because I’ve allowed myself over the years to become distracted from my true dream, thank goodness the Lord brings learning and growth through our rabbit trails. But I write this to other God sized dreamers, the future missionary, the future mom who adopts teenage boys, the future business owner, the future christian music artist, the future author. Listen to the whisper because there are lots of dreamers but few who are dream followers. Be brave, be courageous, be bold, because the Lord is in the business of God sized dreams and he is waiting for us to join Him.

What’s your God Sized Dream?

Look for me linked up at: www.simplifiedlife.net, www.w2wministries.org

Does Anybody See You

Today I was honored to guest blog over at www.amyschlichter.com. Here is just a bit of my thoughts, to read the rest join Amy and don’t forget to leave her some blog love!
I was in the car driving home the other night when a song came on the radio, an old song I’ve heard hundreds of times but something about it this time struck me. It was Does Anybody Hear Her by Casting Crowns this song about a girl seeking and craving salvation struck me in a different way. It made me think how I am like this girl, yes I know Jesus and I’m not seeking new salvation, but yet I still feel like her especially with these lyrics… two years further into the journey yet three more steps behind, standing under the shadow of the steeple does anybody see her, does anybody hear her-insert me here.

I watch myself and other women become lost in the shadows of doing it all, being it all. We create this monster of have it together, keep it together, everyone is watching and I can’t slip, I can’t let my real life struggles show. I know recently there has been lots of talk about realness and being authentic and I love that; yet do we do it? Do I? Or am I the girl hiding in the shadows trying to keep all my ugly covered?

Even when I’m not intending to keep it hidden and covered, I do. Several years ago I was shown how I do it in a loving way. This woman who spoke these words, I’m sure had no idea how they would stick with me. She said, “until I got to really talk with you and know you, I thought you had it all together, had it all figured out and were just shy of perfect.”

I laughed, I mean really laughed, my first thought was wow I had no idea I had the wool pulled over her eyes! Yet I paused and thought, well until I got real with this group of ladies why would they think differently? Facebook and my smiles, while crying on the inside, did wonders to give that distorted view of my life.  I don’t often willingly share my heart, maybe pieces, but not with more then one or two.

How often do you say fine when someone asks how are you?…..To finish today’s blog post be sure to visit Amy at www.amyschlichter.com

The Year of Family–Life Motto–Life Hashtag

This week contained some intentional #yearoffamily moments, I decided that each of the kids would pick a meal and cook it with my help. Rachel said immediately her meal would be spaghetti! That girl LOVES her spaghetti! Brandon took a little longer to decide but finally decided on cavatini. Since they picked two Italian meals we spaced them out a few days, Rachel went first on Monday.

IMG_2653

Mondays are a bit crazy at our house due to ballet at 5:30 and us not getting back home until around 6:45, so we had to work quick(and is the reason for the ballet attire!) Rachel filled the pan of water by herself and I taught her how to turn on the stove top and oven. She put in the noodles, sauce and arranged the bread on the pan she loved every minute of this experience and was overjoyed to serve her family the yumminess she made!

IMG_2656IMG_2657

Brandon was a little more hands on with cooking his meal since he is a bit more familiar with the kitchen. We did discuss proper noodle doneness, this boy is going to make some lucky girl a great husband one day in the very very far future!  I only helped with straining the noodles and removing from the oven -yes I probably am a bit of a worrier but I was concerned about burns! His dish turned out amazing!

IMG_2658IMG_2659IMG_2660

Here is to a continued year of family! We will definitely repeat this cooking experience and I look forward to building it up to taking them shopping for the items they need for their meals and maybe even some budgeting of grocery shopping as well!        IMG_2663

I love that he even served his sister without being asked!