Friday, September 28, 2012

In Some Countries Posting This Could Get me Killed

I woke up this morning thinking about life's little messes. I opened my inbox and found the Voice of the Martyrs update. We'd like to think that martyrdom is a thing of the past. Sadly, it's not. In 2012, despite our ignorance of it, there are still people who are beaten imprisoned, and killed daily for their beliefs. I'm grateful that I live in a country where I can worship in the religion of my  choice. Today is a good day to pray for those who do not. 
My problems are SO small compared to this:

Uzbe-k Pastor Facing Extradition
Sources: VOM Canada, Forum 18 News

Revelation 2:10

An Uzbek pastor who fled Uzbekistan in 2007 has been arrested in Kazakhstan and faces extradition to his home country on charges of illegally teaching religion and distributing literature. Makset Djabbarbergenov, whose wife is expecting their fifth child, was arrested after police held his sister-in-law for two weeks in an effort to discover his whereabouts. The 32-year-old pastor faces up to three years in prison on each charge. A court in Kazakhstan has ordered that Makset be detained until the General Prosecutor’s Office decides whether to extradite him to Uzbekistan. Please pray that Makset will not be turned over to Uzbek authorities. Pray that his growing family will not be fearful but will continue to trust God.

Laos--Five Christian Leaders Arrested
Source: VOM Contacts

Psalm 69:33

On Sept. 11, three Laotian pastors and two other Christian leaders were arrested by district police. The three pastors were bound with chains and sent to the Phin distric prison, while the two others were turned over to provincial leaders and released two days later. The three pastors are enduring harsh conditions in prison -- all remain in handcuffs and one is in stocks, bound by the ankles. District police have visited the pastors’ homes and churches, asking members where their churches obtain funds, why they became Christians and whom the pastors have led to Christ. All three pastors remain in prison, and two are seriously ill. Pray that God will grant these pastors strength and endurance. Pray that authorities will provide them with needed medical treatment.

North Africa
VOM Project

Pray for a team of teachers working in a "Mobile Bible School." The teachers travel across the country in a van, 

teaching in underground Bible schools.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

    36 Birthdays

    Ever notice how easy it is to say that God can do whatever He wants, that is until he decides to do whatever He wants with you? At that point we become a little less thrilled with the idea. I'm majorly guilty of this one. I'd like to believe I'm a woman of faith, but truth is, I have a plan, and faith is usually in opposition to that plan whatever it may be. Oh, I want God to work in my life, but there are times I wish He'd seek my opinion/ approval first. Yes I said that. It's the truth. I've been trying to resign as my commander and chief and place that leadership into more capable hands, but the words come easy, and at times the action seems nearly impossible. *Sigh*
What's a girl to do? God will except no less than total surrender, and in certain areas I'm guilty of offering no more than partial. Isn't "partial surrender" an oxymoron? Anyway, it's the age old battle of a man (woman) versus pride. Truth is, we like being gods of our own little world. We have the power there (or so we think) and it feels safe to control something. To place all things in hands not your own, is the epitome of submission. It's uncertain, it feels unsafe, and it is downright scary.
    On Monday I had a birthday. Of all the birthdays I've looked forward to, eighteen was the most anticipated. This week I celebrated my 36th birthday. It occurred to my that my 18th birthday was 18 years ago. Legally, I've been an adult, longer than I've been a child. It's the kind of weird realization that leaves you looking over, and examining you life's work. What have you done with your 18 years of freedom? I wish I could say that I started a charity, wrote a book, learned a few languages, the kind of stuff on my bucket list. Instead, I've lived a very quiet life. Outside of God, my family, and a few friends (not the Facebook kind) hardly anyone knows I'm here. If I died today there probably won't be a long line of mourners. I'm not trying to be critical of my life, just honest. I'm not looking back with regrets either. There are quite a few things in my life that I could have done differently. But for the most part I tried. I feel OK with that. The one thing I regret most, is not being completely surrendered to the God I claim I believe in. I look back and I see that my history with Him is inconsistent. Sometimes I walking with Him, at other times I'm skipping off in a totally different direction. For however much more time God gives me, I'd like to spend it in obedience to Him. That means I'm dethroning myself. I'm no longer god in my own little world. I'd really like to look back 18 years years from now, and see what He does with a totally surrendered life. 
I guess if you want to find out what He does, you'll have to follow me for the next 18 years God willing. I look forward to talking to you more about this then... :)

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Bill Withers - Ain't No Sunshine

So it's not the music of my generation, but I love "the blues." It almost seems impossible to pick a favorite artist in that category. I don't know who inspired this song, but I'd like to take a moment to thank her: Whoever you are, I don't know what ya did to this man, or why ya did it, but girl thank you because he is singing from the gut right there! I love this song :) Wonder if I can get the hubby to sing like that...Nahh..

Friday, September 21, 2012

"Ya'll Want This Party Started ....Right"

OK, it's Friday night, and I have nothing on my agenda. Nada. I intend to watch a movie (from the comfort of my couch) and sleep in tomorrow God willing. You' d think I'd be embarrassed to admit how boring my Friday night plans are. So NOT embarrassed. I'm smiling like a Cheshire cat right now. I'm so in love with my low key night, I decided to tell you all about. I don't know where you are, what you are doing, or what you have planned, but I sure hope you have as much fun as I intend to tonight. Happy Friday Ya'll :)

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Keep It Simple

Life has been coming at me really fast. There is so much I need to do. There is little time for me. I decided an earlier wake up call might help. I started waking up before the rooster. It has only helped a little. I took it a step further, and began scheduling most aspects of my day. That has helped even more. I have to confess though, keeping up with the schedule has been a chore in itself. I can't win. I have so much I need to do, the things that I want to do, appear to be a luxury. It's overwhelming.  That's exactly how I felt, overwhelmed.
And then it happened, a break. On Tuesday, around lunchtime, I stumbled (more like tripped and fell) upon some much needed free time. I sat down, and had lunch. Alone. It wasn't a grab and go,shove it in your face,when you are on the run, kinda of lunch. It was a, prepare it, sit down, and eat with both hands (a fork if you choose) kind of lunch. In case you are curious, it was black bean burritos, and they were delicious. Did I mention I did this alone? I was so thrilled with anticipation over having a quiet mommy meal, I got all excited, and kept interrupting myself! Yep, it can be done. I made lunch, I sat at the table, I realized I forgot my drink. I get up, get drink. I sat down, and realized I forgot a fork.  I get up, get fork. I sat down,and  realized I forgot napkins (who eats burritos without napkins right). I got up, get napkins, sat down, and thought, "what a great time to do something you enjoy, like skim through a magazine." I got up, and got a magazine.  Repeat this cycle, and so went my quiet lunch. Somewhere in the middle of the trips to and from the dinner table,  there were a few moments to just be still. During one of those moments, I had this thought: "The best things in life are better than free. THEY ARE SIMPLE." I was enjoying one of them at that moment. I experienced a few of them this week, a giggling baby, a spouse that is truly a partner, and best friend, a "mommy you're the best" comment, a few hours with friends, a weird flower you've never seen before, people that love you enough to be honest with you, and so much more. Yes, I had a busy week, but it was a beautiful week. It was made so by all the simple things that one can easily take for granted. I'm grateful that this week, I didn't. I was literally reminded to stop and "smell the roses" well flowers, and that simple things can be treasures.

Friday, September 7, 2012

One Thing Remains - Jesus Culture (lyric video)

I have to confess; being a christian used to be a bit rough on me. I'm a music junkie. A while back it seemed  like a lot of religious music was...let's just say it wasn't quite doing it for me. I'm not throwing stones at the christian music industry, but the islander in me need something with a, beat, heat, an edge, an attitude. That was what Christian music was years ago. This is what it is now, it is praise with a passion. It is powerful. It's a reason to fall  in love with the stereo system in my car...again.  I enjoy my drive to anywhere. I get in my car and my radio is on blast! I'm sure someone looking from the outside can't imagine that, so much head banging, and movement could be induced by worship, but I assure you, it is. There is so much happening in the world of worship music, and I am so happy to share it, and to hear it, literally.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

My Good Fight

I took a stand today
Guilt no more for me.
I fought pity today,
I like this feeling, free.
I'm stronger than I know,
God dismissed all doubt.
I opened a door of grace,
And let old grudges out.
Worry has no home here.
Confidence take your throne.
There goes my frustration,
Anger leave me alone!
I said goodbye to flawed expectations.
I traded pain for peace.
I acknowledged my weaknesses,
And found I was released.
Humility tamed pride.
Contentment replaced lust.
I lept of the ledge of secrecy,
And took a chance on trust.
Bitterness bowed to forgiveness.
Hurt welcomed healing.
I accepted love, I gave it.
Excuses no longer justification,
I am a soldier, obsessed with my mission,
Search and destroy whatever threatens my joy.
I fight. I battle. I war,
Sometimes afraid, always relentless.
I've engaged the emeny without,
And prevailed to a degree,
Using all courage to confront,
My greatest adversary, me.