Saturday, April 30, 2011

Dusty Corners

     I go through times when I just fight God on issues. I know that I am the only one in this world who does that, right? HA!  Why do we do that? Why do we do what we know we shouldn’t and don’t do what we know we should?  I know that I should show love, have joy, which gives me peace, when I am patient, making me want to show kindness, from which is goodness,  while I am having faithfulness, others see gentleness and all this bring about self-control.  Ok , that was fun to write!
     I know what God wants from me and my heart, my innermost being really wants to give it to Him.  Just sometimes, "I wanna be in a mood.”  I laugh, that quote has become a joke of sorts amongst some friends after Beth Moore made a comment in one of our Bible Study sessions.  Our other famous quote, “STOP IT!”  (Click on it to see a great video, but after you finish reading this post.)
     Things have been happening lately, situations God has me going through, Bible studies He has placed me in that is stirring up all that yucky dust in the corners of the closets of my heart.  I have allergies - I don’t like dusting!  I am thankful that God doesn’t leave me alone, doesn’t walk away and say, “she’s not worth all the trouble.” I am thankful He doesn’t place me in that dusty closet and shut the door and say, “stay in there until you clean it all up.”  He just simply asks me to come, come and sit at His feet and fellowship with Him. Come and be willing to let Him do all the dusting.  I think my heart must be Honduran - here dusting has to be done daily, sometimes twice a day!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011


     It never ceases to amaze me that God designed my childhood as training for my adulthood.  That’s the way He is, using yesterday to train us for today and today to train us for tomorrow. I never want to stop being in training. Until my final breath my prayer will be, “Lord, keep teaching me!”
     After the four year period of ‘just us girls’ my mom remarried to the man I have called Dad since I was 9.  It was definitely a transition.  We went from mom and three daughters to dad, mom, 4 daughters, 1 son, 2 already-out-of-the-house sons, 1 daughter-in-law and a baby on the way.   Somethings were easy to adjust to, somethings not as much.
     My Dad was/is quite controlling and hard.  He likes things his way and he expected us to bend to that immediately.  Without talk, without discussion he moved in and it was set in stone that everything was his way.  Don’t get me wrong, I love my dad. In fact, a good bit of my controlling nature was probably learned from him. My stubbornness, well....that one I think I was born with!
     I am finding that God seems to remind me of childhood moments long forgotten when I am in the same phase as an adult.  For the last several years He has been orchestrating my life to resemble my childhood.  I guess He is ready for me to deal with the past and grow up!  
     As we are going through transition with our team, God has reminded me of that transition with my family.  He has shown me that I have to communicate.  I have to respect others opinions and the way they work. I have to lay aside ‘my-way’.
     In the near future our team  will consist of 5 very opinionated women and 3 guys.  John told me when that happens he is going to ask Mike if the guys can have their own team meetings!  I know we won’t always agree, we’ll definitely want to always share our opinions and I am sure hurt feelings are coming.  My prayer is that we will always remember that this is God’s ministry and His way. That we will talk, respect, extend grace and love one another.  “ By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” John 13:35ESV
     I feel so blessed that God has sent us here to Honduras.  I love and respect our team mates and there is no where else I would rather be than right here serving alongside them! Well...dancing while the Father sings over me does trump living in Honduras...but for now, until I can dance with Jesus, Honduras is where I want to be!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011


    I have been pretty crabby the last several days.  John put his hands on my shoulders, got close to my face and asked, “Do you need to go away for a couple of days?”  I laughed, he laughed. I love how he can always make me laugh.
    Asking God why I was being the way I was, He reminded me - it’s the goodbyes.  From an early age my life has been full of them.  I was thinking through the best friends I have had. A year with one in this school, a year with one in that school, 3 years with this one, 4 years with that one before a goodbye came. Due to a move, due to a change in schools or to life just moving on and paths going separate ways.
    The first best friend I remember loosing was the one I had the longest.  She and I met when I was in 2nd and she in 3rd.   We bonded almost immediately.  Although we rarely talked about it, we both shared the experience of loosing our daddies to an accident.  We both had large blended families and we just ‘got’ each other.
     We went to a small Christian school where we were in the same classroom until she was in 7th and I was in 6th. And that was the last year we were best friends.  The next year I was pulled out to homeschool and our lives just parted.  The weekend sleepovers started dying off, phone calls went days longer, until it was months before we had spoken.
    This trend has extended from childhood to adulthood and the goodbyes continue.  College friends and others from all the different cities and states and countries where John and I have lived.  God knew that He had called me to missionary life long before I was even born.  He knew I needed the ‘classroom’ time of goodbyes as a child before He put me on the 'field assignment’ as an adult. He knew that I would need to know what it felt like as a child so that I could know what my kiddos are going through.
     Watching my kids constantly going through goodbyes - this is the part of missions that i do NOT like, but who does?  Abigail and Rebekah had a class project this week.  They had to pick a song about their life.  Abi’s song:

If This World by Jaci Velasquez
Do you feel you’ve been disowned,
Left outside in the cold and without a home?
Do you think that no one cares
That you’re lost and alone and without a prayer?
Don’t give into the lie that there’s no one you can turn to.
Don’t lose heart, there is hope,
There is someone who will never desert you, oh.

If this world is a lonely place for you,
Fall into the arms of love.
If this world is a lonely place for you,
There’s a God who you can trust,
Who’ll comfort you and lift you up.

Are you looking for a friend
Who will stand by your side to the very end?
Someone who is always true to his word,
Be assured he won’t turn from you.
Put your faith in the one who will never let you down.
He has proven his love.
Open up to all he has for you now, oh.

If this world is a lonely place for you,
Fall into the arms of love.
If this world is a lonely place for you,
There’s a God who you can trust,
Who’ll comfort you and lift you up.

He hears your cry, he sees your tears,
He knows your pain and all your fears.
He waits for you with open arms,
He longs to live inside your heart.
You’ll never be alone again.

If this world is a lonely place for you,
Fall into the arms of love.
If this world is a lonely place for you,
There’s a God who you can trust,
Who’ll comfort you and lift you up.

    We were listening to the song on the way to school this morning and my silent prayer was, “Oh Lord! May they always know that YOU are their true friend and constant companion that will never leave them nor forsake them. May they always go running to your comforting arms when they are lonely or sad.”

And then the song that our Sweet Sweet Bekah Girl chose came on:  

Got to be True by Steven Curtis Chapman

Well normally at this point you'd hear me sing
And I'd be doing that acoustic guitar thing So by now you're probably wondering what's going on
'Cause this is really starting to sound like one of those rap songs
Well let me tell you what the boy's up to You see I like rap music and the beat box groove
And sometimes I gotta admit I close all the doors And wave my arms around and I pace the floor
But then I crack up laughing, I gotta stop And just face the facts the boy don't hip hop
You see I grew up in a state where the grass is blue So if it's gonna be believable it's got to b tru

It's got to b tru
I've gotta be living what I say I believe
It's got to b tru
even when nobody but Jesus is watching me
It's got to b tru
every single minute of every day If anybody's ever gonna look at me and say hey it's got to b tru

You hear me saying that it's got to b tru
And no my homeboy Toby wants to talk to you

Tru check it out I got a next door neighbor
And I can tell he's been watching my behavior
Yo he's heard that I'm a Christian guy He wants to know if that's the truth or a lie
He's got a list of reasons not to believe Like doubt, dissolution, hypocrisy
It's gonna take some living proof to break through those walls
Yea, it's got to b tru if he'll believe at all 

    That girl is going to be who she is no matter where she is.  And one thing we can always be assured of, she will laugh at herself and get us laughing at the same time. I guess she got that from her daddy!
    Still crabby? Maybe a little.  I’m missing those that I have had to say goodbye to recently; Katie who went home to be with Jesus 7 weeks ago today and the McCanns who just returned permanently to the States. However, I am thanking God for friends that He has given me here in La Ceiba; my Bible Study Group Ladies, one of whom I get to spend lots of time with on our 5:30am walks (and who reminds me ALOT of my 2nd-6th grade best friend and who I have ALOT in common with!). Lastly, I am anticipating with great joy the ‘hellos’ that are to come soon; the return of the Pettengills from furlough and the arrival of our new teammate Shannon.