So proud of Derick for the start of his new blog costlymercy.com. Worth the read.
So proud of Derick for the start of his new blog costlymercy.com. Worth the read.
Last week was a little rough. Both girl’s had doctor’s appointments (which resulted in blood being drawn and shots were given). Also, even more sadly, I found out last week that both my grandmother and grandfather (my dad’s parent’s) passed away.
It was sad and yet I was reminded again to go to God for His comfort, His help and to keep away from sin.
I was listening to some music in the car and the follow song struck my heart again. As I get ready to go to Prayer Meeting tonight it was a song to go back to again as a reminder to stay close to God.
Laden with guilt and full of fears
I fly to Thee my Lord
And not a glimpse of hope appears
But in Thy written word
The volumes of my Father’s grace
Does all my grief’s assuage
Here I behold my Savior’s face
In every page
This is the field where hidden lies
The pearl of price unknown
That merchant is divinely wise
Who makes the pearl his own
Here consecrated waters flow
To quench my thirst of sin
Here the fair tree of knowledge grown
No danger dwells within
This is the judge that ends the strife
Where wit and reason fail
My guide to everlassing life
Throughout this gloomy vale
O may Thy counsels, mighty God
My roving feet command
Nor I fosake the happy road
That leads to Thy right hand
We just came back from visiting Derick’s Grandparents last week. It was a long drive, but worth every mile. We enjoyed the sweet fellowship of Grammie and Grandpa. Our four year old daughter cried when we had to leave. After our trip I completely understand why they are called the “Greatest Generation”.
Grammie and Grandpa are in their 80s but you would hardly know it. They cooked for us. They played with our children. It was especially fun to watch Grammie play soccer and Grandpa play hide and seek with Sophia. But the sweetest moments were the fellowship we had around God’s Word and hearing about their work in the church. It was convicting to me to see their love for God and glean from their wisdom.
I feel my generation and younger so often disregard the older generation. Instead we are consumed with ourselves. We as the younger generation often thinks of ourselves as the fountain of knowledge, the ones with the better ideas, and the greater gifts. We feel we have things figured out and all the solutions to the problems of the world. As if the previous generations were unable to fix anything and we have come to save the day. I wish I could say that the church is immune to this thinking, but unfortunately I believe it is just as much a problem for those of us who are Christians. Far too often I have seen churches ripped apart by the younger generations. Men and women who come into ministries like a bull in a china shop. They refuse to listen to the elders and instead push their ways, their plans, their methods, and believe they are the solution to growing the church. I have spoken to so many pastors who were excited to have young people come in to their ministry only to be hurt and disappointed when a short time later the young people used their talents to tear apart the ministry instead of building it up.
The longer I have served in ministry the more I have been humbled by God and by my elders. I have realized that I don’t have everything figured out. I need my elders to come around me to guide me, advise me and stir me on to good works. I can learn from the previous generations. They are faithful, diligent, hardworking, loving, and godly. Where is the harm to following in those footsteps?
This is the blessing I received from visiting Grammie and Grandpa this past week. Grammie and Grandpa at age 80 work circles around me at age 30. Their faithfulness to their little church is humbling. Their diligence in service to God is inspiring. Their love for people puts my relationships to shame. Their love for God and their desire for godliness and holiness is convicting. They are the “Greatest Generation”, and I hope to follow their example.
So, younger generations, look to the elders around you. Who can you follow. I am glad that I not only have Grammie and Grandpa, but also my own parents, in-laws, and many faithful men and women in my church that constantly are a rebuke and point me to Christ. I challenge you, before you make a decision, or follow on with your own agenda for the ministry talk to your elders. You might be surprised by their great wisdom.
Earlier this month I turned the big 3-0. I have to say it was not as bad as I thought it would be. As the time was approaching I really began to struggle with the idea that I was no longer going to be in my 20s. My husband, who entered the world of 30 two years before me was assuring me that it would not be so bad, but deep down I really didn’t believe him. However, the day came and I didn’t cry or wail like I imagined I would. Instead, the day, and really the whole weekend I turned 30, was filled with smiles, love, and a thankful heart. So, below I decided to celebrate my birthday by writing out the 30 things I am thankful for.
1. I have a wonderful husband who is truly my best friend. He makes me laugh. And spoils the mess out of me.
2. I have my first daughter, Sophia, who is smart, funny, and has a wild imagination I enjoy every day.
3. I have my second daughter, Naomi. I just enjoy looking at her little face. She is funny, crazy, but I just can’t help but smile when I think about her.
4. I have my third child on the way. That’s right, I am pregnant and can’t wait to see the newest personality that will be a part of our growing family sometime in April.
5. Due to the pregnancy, I have experienced some mega morning sickness, (Which is not the part I am thankful for) but my husband has pretty much taken over cooking, cleaning and laundry. This is what makes me extremely thankful.
6. I am thankful for the lessons on trusting the Lord through being so sick.
7. I am thankful for a church family who sang “Happy Birthday” to me on Sunday.
8. I am thankful for the card my parents gave to me that was so sweet it made me cry. (Although Derick told me it was probably because of the pregnancy hormones that I was crying).
9. I am thankful for a sister-in-law who was so sweet and wrote some really great words on facebook. This was probably the most special gift I received on my birthday.
10. I am thankful that I get to be home with my children and get to enjoy them all day.
11. I am thankful for friends who make me laugh.
12. I am thankful that I get to live so close to all my family and the support they are to my family.
13. I am thankful for the many people who are willing to babysit my children when Derick and I want to sneak away.
14. I am thankful for a God who is always moving toward me.
15. I am thankful for answered prayers.
16. I am thankful for the fellowship the gospel brings among His people.
17. I am thankful that I grew up in a Christian home with loving parents who always did their best to show me Christ in their marriage and in our home.
18. I am thankful for both sets of Grandparents that spoil my children.
19. I am thankful for how I have seen God provide our family with a new house, minivan, children, hardwood floors, and so much more over the years.
20. I am thankful that I have a husband who knows how to cook and makes me anything I am craving.
21. I am thankful for two little girls who like playing with each other.
22. I am thankful God provided a way for my daughter to go to school this year.
23. I am thankful for people in our church who care about me and my family and show it on a weekly basis.
24. I am thankful that God would choose to use me.
25. I am thankful for God’s Word and the fact that He has revealed Himself to us.
26. I am thankful for salvation. It is a true miracle.
27. I am thankful for God’s creation and that we can enjoy it.
28. I am thankful for the vacations our families were able to take together. It always make me smile when I think about them.
29. I am thankful that God gives grace abundantly and freely.
30. I am thankful I am God’s child and all the blessings that He gives me as His own, and that one day I will spend an eternity with Him.
So, being 30 is not so bad. Yes, I spent my last night of 29 going to bed at 9:30 pm because I was feeling sick, but as I laid there I was truly thankful for all the things God has given and look forward to another 30 years of walking with God.
I figured I would take this opportunity (being kid free for the afternoon) to catch up on some writing. This Summer has been a blur and the second part of the Summer promises to be even more busy. Between our day trips, church events, and 2 family vacations, our house is quickly becoming a rest stop to do some laundry and repack our suitcases for the next big event. Of course, it goes without saying that our kids are loving every minute of it. It has been so wonderful spending time creating memories with our kids. I don’t know if its the exhaustion from traveling or just the pure, unadulterated gratefulness of moments to sing, laugh, and just watch my children that have brought many tears to my eyes. I am happy for the time I have to stop and watch my children. It is in those moments that I realize that my children will never be this age again. Life slows down for only a few minutes but I try to enjoy every one.
Okay, enough of that. Moving on before I ruin the keyboard of my laptop with tears. Another great moment I was able to have this Summer was being a part of a Quinceanera. For those of you who might not know what this is, it is a Puerto Rican (as well as other Latino countries) tradition that celebrates a girl’s 15th birthday. It is a huge celebration. I was honored to be a part of this party for a girl in our youth group whose family we love to death. I was the guest speaker and cake maker (picture below). It was truly a blessing to be there and even more of a blessing to a part of her special day.
I hope as the Summer continues, that I will slow down, in the midst of the madness, and keep enjoying the special moments that come once a life time. I hope you all do the same. Enjoy every moment with your family and friends to the glory of God.
I posted before a link to a friend I knew in college who recently lost her child. About a month ago another friend from college lost her husband after only being married a little over two years. Both of these women have been inspirations to me in their times of suffering. What I am learning from their struggle to keep the faith and pursue God in the midst of hurt has been convicting, encouraging, and has brought me closer to the Lord. Their testimonies are nothing shy of God’s wonderful grace transforming lives for His glory, and even though we don’t understand, for their good.
Here is a link to Ami’s post regarding her struggle with her loss and her amazing walk with her God.
“The ultimate test of my understanding of the scriptural teaching is the amount of time I spend in prayer. As theology is ultimately the knowledge of God, the more theology I know, the more it should drive me to seek to know God. Not to know “about” Him but to know Him! The whole object of salvation is to bring me to knowledge of God… If all my knowledge does not lead me to prayer there is something wrong somewhere.” Martyn Lloyd-Jones
I am thankful to my husband Derick for posting this quote last week on his facebook page. It had more meaning to me this past Sunday as I listened to a sermon on the Trinity. The sermon was a simple explanation that we have one God who exists in three separate persons.
As I sat listening I was moved by the fact that such a basic knowledge of God moves my heart to rejoice and worship Him. I am thankful to the Holy Spirit for His work in my heart that helps to take a truth of God to move me closer in my relationship to God.
I then started questioning why I do not have more moments like that. I realized I usually step away from thinking on these wonderful truths like the Trinity. Then I realized that it is because these truths remind me how finite and small I am. But it is when I realize I am small that I see God in all His true majesty and it is then I find joy because I see God.
Think on the truths of God today. Let it bring you closer to Him and experience true joy today.