Welcome to my blog! Odd title you say? Yes, maybe, but I bet you would agree with me that life is chaotic! I'm mindful though, in the midst of the chaos, of Colossians 3:17 "Whatever you do, do it all in the name of Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father!" I thank God that my life gets to be chaotic...I know that through the chaos He is transforming me to be more like Him!

Monday, August 22, 2011

First Things Weekend

This weekend was full of FIRST things!

My FIRST time to attend a Pearl football game cheering for the Pearl Pirates...

Moved my FIRST baby sister into college...

(She's the one on the right with the long hair.)

The FIRST time to not have my grandmother here to wish her happy birthday on August 20th...

(She would have been 69)


My FIRST time to buy Cheerios! I stumbled upon a new favorite - Banana Nut Cheerios.

(I'm not usually a fan of Cheerios in any form, but these are great!)

First things can be fun, scary, sad, or just weird. But that's the way of first things. You take them as they come, and make the best of them!

Thursday, August 18, 2011


Have you ever encountered harsh opposition at a time in your life that you were passionately following God and being obedient to His commands? It's sometimes enough to stop you dead in your tracks and that's exactly satan's intent. I want to provide you some encouragement straight from Scripture today. These new testament writers new this feeling all too well, and this is what they had to say about it. I hope it encourages you to keep pursuing righteousness no matter what people say about you.

So how am I to respond? I've decided that I really don't care about their motives, whether mixed, bad, or indifferent. Every time one of them opens his mouth, Christ is proclaimed, so I just cheer them on! And I'm going to keep that celebration going because I know how it's going to turn out. Through your faithful prayers and the generous response of the Spirit of Jesus Christ, everything he wants to do in and through me will be done. I can hardly wait to continue on my course. I don't expect to be embarrassed in the least. On the contrary, everything happening to me in this jail only serves to make Christ more accurately known, regardless of whether I live or die. They didn't shut me up; they gave me a pulpit! Alive, I'm Christ's messenger; dead, I'm his bounty. Life versus even more life! I can't lose. Philippians 1:21 MSG

If with heart and soul you're doing good, do you think you can be stopped? Even if you suffer for it, you're still better off. Don't give the opposition a second thought. Through thick and thin, keep your hearts at attention, in adoration before Christ, your Master. Be ready to speak up and tell anyone who asks why you're living the way you are, and always with the utmost courtesy. Keep a clear conscience before God so that when people throw mud at you, none of it will stick. They'll end up realizing that they're the ones who need a bath. It's better to suffer for doing good, if that's what God wants, than to be punished for doing bad. That's what Christ did definitively: suffered because of others' sins, the Righteous One for the unrighteous ones. He went through it all—was put to death and then made alive—to bring us to God. 1 Peter 3:13-18 MSG

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

On the iPod

If you're looking for some new music then you should check this out on iTunes. I can't seem to turn it off.

And this one's not new, but it's so good! I'm going back and forth between the songs on these albums constantly!


Monday, August 1, 2011

From Contentious to Contentment - Step 2

A heart at peace gives life to the body, but envy rots the bones. Proverbs 14:30

Blinkers. No, not the mechanism in my car used when changing lanes or making a turn that makes my car sound like the wooden percussion instruments children beat with a stick to make music. I'm talking about the kind used on horses to limit their range of sight. Blinkers, also known as winkers or blinders, are pieces of horse tack that prevent the horse from seeing to the rear or to the side of them. Many racehorse trainers believe that these keep the horse focused on what's in front of them, encouraging them to pay attention to the race, rather than distractions, such as crowds. They are even used on driving horses to keep them from being distracted or spooked on crowded streets.

Step 2 - Stop looking around at what others have-look instead at how God has uniquely created & blessed you!

What I would give for a pair of blinkers for my own eyes most days! I'm a racehorse in a race, yet I start out of the gate most days without my blinkers on. I eventually lose focus of the race as my eyes look beside me at the other horses in the race. Next, my eyes drift up toward the crowd. The only things I notice are those more talented than me, more important than me, and the ones God seems to be blessing more than me! These distractions only lead to one thing...discontentment. Before I know it, I no longer like anything about being a racehorse and running a race is the last thing I want to do! These feelings stop me in my tracks and I sit down in the middle of the racetrack complaining to anyone who will listen (including God!) about how much better everyone has it than me. It leaves me miserable.

But on those days when I remember to put my blinkers on my eyes, I start out of the gate confident in the race I'm running and sure there's a prize to be won at the finish line. I'm focused on the goal. I'm excited about how my unique training has equipped me to succeed. I know there are other horses running beside me, but because I can't see them, their footsteps only encourage me to run faster. I know there is a crowd watching, but their collective cheers make me feel like they are all cheering for me. After all, the only thing I can see is the race I'm running. I'm focused on the finish line and I know I can reach it. It feels so good, so right.

It's amazing how true and practical the words from Proverbs are. When you have peace you have life. When you are envious, it brings destruction. When you find yourself constantly looking at everyone around you, you're going to always find someone taller, shorter, skinner, fatter, more wealthy, more intelligent, etc. So get out your blinkers and let's get focused.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

From Contentious to Contentment - Step 1

It's better to live on the corner of the roof than in a house shared with a contentious woman. Proverbs 25:24

"It's no use crying over spilled milk!" At least that's what I've always heard. So why does it seem I'm always crying over the spilled milk in my life? Of course the "spilled milk" in my life takes the form of a situation I can't control, a decision I don't understand, expectations I've placed on others not met, and a number of other things! The moment things begin to not go as planned is the moment I begin to lose my contentment. I instantly feel my joy depleting! It's so easy to let these circumstances steal my joy and before I know it, I've become this "contentious woman" Proverbs is speaking so boldly of! So how do we keep this from happening?

Step 1 - Count Your Blessings!

Yes, we're going back to the basics here, but think about it. It's impossible to gripe about the things you are busy thanking God for. If it's a situation at work that you're allowing to bother you and steal your joy, what about thanking God that you have a job and how He has provided for you? I know it seems simple, but it can make a world of difference. It can be the difference in going from contentious to contentment in your life.

I suppose the moral of this story is when you're tempted to cry over spilled milk, instead try thanking God that you have the milk in the first place!

"...I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. I can do all things through him who strengthens me." Philippians 4:11-13

Monday, April 18, 2011

What's Your Name?

My husband and I have some friends with a two year-old son who we are absolutely smitten with! His name is Zach. If his parents would let us, I think we would claim him as our own. Recently we took Zach out on the town for a night so his parents could have a date night. The three of us had dinner, played at the park, and went for ice cream. We had a great time! One thing this two year-old has recently learned is how to say his full name. If you know how two year-olds work, then you know that they like to repeat new words and phrases over and over and over again. Throughout the night he kept letting us know that his name was "Zachary David Hoober." When I would comment to him that he was a "big boy!" He would promptly correct me and say, "I'm not a big boy, I'm Zachary David Hoober!" Whenever he met a stranger over the course of the night that would ask him his name, he wouldn't even let them finish asking the question before he blurted out, "I'm Zachary David Hoober!" At one point in the night my husband and I were commenting to Zach that he would soon be three years-old when, you guessed it, he quickly let us know that he wasn't almost three, he was "Zachary David Hoober!"

We laugh at that story, but I think it's safe to say that we could all learn a thing or two from Zach. He knew what his name was and he wasn't about to let you call him anything different! But isn't that what we do? We let other people rename us. We listen to the accusations of the devil tell us who we are. We let the situations of life determine what we will be called. Ugly. Dumb. Ashamed. Insecure. Defeated. Unworthy. Useless. Loser. The list could go on and on. It may be mistakes that we've made in the past, or situations we've had to live through, but we believe the lies of the devil in our head telling us this is who we are and all we will ever amount to.

But I want to let you in on a little secret. John 10:10 says the devil is out to steal from us, kill us, and if that's not enough, he wants to absolutely destroy us. So why do we let him tell us what should be called? Over and over again we let him beat us up and slap labels on us that we eventually believe. In John 8:44 he is called the father of lies. So why do we listen to him and believe him again and again? I think it's because we don't really know what our full name is. For those of us in Christ Jesus, we have a new name and now is the time to learn it.

Your name is New Creation. (1 Cor. 5:17)
Your name is Friend of the God of the universe. (John 15:15)
Your name is Chosen. (Ephesians 1:3-8)
Your name is Child of God. (Ephesians 1:3-8)
Your name is Not Condemned (Romans 8:1)
Your name is Forgiven. (Col. 1:13-14)
Your name is Temple of God. (1 Cor. 3:16)
Your name is More than a Conqueror. (Romans 8:31-39)

That is your name! That is who God says you are. The devil has no right to fill in that blank on your name tag unless you let him. Now is the time to learn your true identity in Christ. It's time to stand up to the devil and let him know what your real name is!

Oh the lessons we can learn from an innocent two year-old! Like Zach, we shouldn't even let Satan get through his accusation before we're blurting out, "No I'm not, I'm Forgiven!" We shouldn't be content with someone calling us what we used to be before we're letting them know, "I'm not that anymore, I'm a New Creation!" When we know our full name we have the ability to approach the overwhelming situations of life that make us feel defeated with the exclamation that we are More than a Conqueror!

So let's practice. What's your name?

Thursday, April 14, 2011

My Oh Crap Moment

I was driving down the road yesterday with the sun shining, my sunglasses on, and my Jesus Culture CD blaring in my car. I've got the music turned up and I'm singing at the top of my lungs to Jesus Culture's version of "I Exalt Thee" when I drove past a cop sitting on the side of the road. My "I Exalt Thee" instantly turned into "Oh Crap!" as I slammed on my brakes and realized I had no knowledge of how fast I was going. Fortunately for me, I wasn't speeding, and didn't have to spend the rest of that beautiful afternoon interacting with that policeman!

Isn't it interesting how often we go from "I Exalt Thee" moments to "Oh Crap!" moments in our everyday life? I don't know about you, but it's easy for me to walk around praising God as long as there aren't situations in my life distracting me. So how do you keep that song of praise in your heart in the midst of frustrating circumstances? Psalm 16 gives us this example:

I have set the Lord always before me;
because he is at my right hand, I shall not be shaken.
Therefore my heart is glad, and my whole being rejoices;
my flesh also dwells secure.

What security we have in our God! We can know that even while we are facing situations that seem overwhelming, with God at our right hand, we will not be shaken. These verses say that because of this truth, we can be glad and our hearts can still rejoice even in the frustrating moments in life.

So the next time you're tempted to turn your "I Exalt Thee" moment into an "Oh Crap" moment and take your eyes off of the security we have in our Father, remember the promises that come when we continually set the Lord before us! Try to keep your focus on the promises of God and not the chaos of your situation.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

She Speaks a Six Word Story

I was recently encouraged to write a story using only six words. Impossible you say? Ernest Hemingway did this once and considered it the best writing of his career.


The goal in writing this story is to pack an emotional wallop in these six words that tells you everything you need to know! So here you go...


I'm hoping to win a scholarship to the She Speaks conference I have been talking so much about on this blog! Find out more about the conference here!

Thursday, March 31, 2011

My Sunglasses

I know this might sound strange, but I love my sunglsses. They go with me everywhere, just in case I need them. I don't just use them when the sun is out either, I need them always. On my face, on my head, or just nearby...I love to have them close by. I'm the girl driving down the road in the rain on a cloudy day wearing my sunglasses. Yes, I am aware that the sun is not out, but it does not matter.

Where I currently stand in my journey of life, I feel like I am having to keep my FAITH glasses on constantly. I feel like the girl driving through life in the rain on a cloudy day wearing my sunglasses, except I am wearing my FAITH glasses. People give me looks. They don't understand. I don't really understand completely why I keep these glasses on, other than I'm convinced that I have heard from God. I look through the glasses because when I have them on, the things God has called me to do make a little more sense. When I don't have the glasses on, I completely don't understand the things God is calling me to. It's easy to want to take the glasses off too, especially when people tell me there's no way these dreams I am chasing will ever happen. I hear all the reasons why these things will never happen. I get the weird looks, the looks of disappointment. I hear the voices in my head telling me that nothing I'm chasing after makes sense, and I already knew that. There are days when I want to throw the glasses in the garbage and just do what everyone wants me to do. I think of how much easier it would be to follow God if He would just tell me to do things that made sense; things that I knew I could do on my own.

But in the middle of all these thoughts, these people, these voices is another voice. This voice calls to me and somehow quiets all the other voices in the moment it's speaking. The voice tells me to put the FAITH glasses back on and look through them. When I do, my heart flutters and I can't help but smile. Through these glasses I can see these dreams become reality. Through the glasses I can see great things. Through the glasses I can see great provision. With the glasses on I feel great peace. With the glasses on I feel an immense amount of joy. Then the voice whispers to me, "Without faith, it is impossible to please God." I'm then reminded that it is my goal in life to please God, and if wearing these glasses is pleasing to Him then give me a hundred pairs in a hundred different colors! Despite what people think, despite what people say, and despite the voices in my head. If you're walking through life and see a girl wearing her glasses in the rain on a cloudy day, just let her be. Know she isn't trying to be crazy, she is just trying to be pleasing to the One who has called her, and consider putting your glasses on too. Imagine what God could do through a hundred people wearing their FAITH glasses, after all, it only takes faith the size of a mustard seed right?

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

The Dance

Have you ever thought about what popular dance song would best describe your life? Would it be “The Cha-Cha Slide” by DJ Casper or perhaps “Stayin Alive” by the BeeGees? Or maybe it would be “It Don’t Mean a Thing” by Duke Ellington or “Who Let the Dogs Out” by Baha Men? Or maybe your life is more like the Theme Song from Mission: Impossible.” If you’re like me, you could probably have a different dance song everyday of the week. One day I could be dancing to “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun” by Cyndi Lauper and the next day “I will Survive” by Gloria Gaynor. The day after that it might be “Thriller” by Michael Jackson and then the next day “Oops, I Did It Again” by Britney Spears. I’m nosy and like to be in charge of everything so on those days my dance song would be “I Don’t Wanna Miss a Thing” by Aerosmith or “Taking Care of Business” by B.T.O. Some days I wake up dancing to “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” by Diana Ross, but by the end of the same day I will be dancing to “The Climb” by Miley Cyrus. And of course there are many, many days when my dance song would be “Livin On A Prayer” by Bon Jovi or “Turbo Hustle” by DJ Maestro.

Life is our dance. And the truth is, this dance has so many ups and downs, twists and turns! Sometimes we are dancing to a slow waltz before the music abruptly changes and we’re dancing to “Boot Scootin Boogie.” One minute we could be dancing to “Forever Young” by Rod Stewart and then the next day “Walk Like an Egyptian” by the Bangles. We never know what a day will bring. We never know what obstacle or challenge is right around the corner waiting for us. We can wake up one morning feeling like the happiest person alive and have everything going our way, and suddenly something can happen in that same day to turn everything around.

More than likely at some point in your dance the music you were dancing to drastically changed its pace in one single moment in time, without warning. That’s how life is. Tragedy. Death. Earthquakes. Tsunamis. Fires. We don’t get to control this dance called life, but we all have to live in it. We all have to experience changes in music, tempo, rhythm, and rhyme. Maybe you have been through seasons of your life where you felt like the music was going so fast you couldn't keep up! Or maybe you have been through seasons where the music seemed to slow down when you wanted it to speed up.

The reality is we will all face good days and bad days. We will all experience things in life that we have no control over. In John 16:33 Jesus said, "In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world."©(NASB) For those who are walking with Christ, the Bible says that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God and are called according to His purposes. (Romans 8:28 ©NASB)

We see examples of this all throughout Scripture. We read the account of the Israelites, God's chosen people, as they had to wander in the wilderness for 40 years. Some of you may be thinking, "That's me! I've been wandering around in the wilderness and I'm wondering when something is going to go my way! I'm ready to enter the Promised Land!" In Deuteronomy, as the Israelites are finally getting ready to conquer the land of Canaan after many years of waiting, God makes a covenant with them. In this covenant, God reminds them of how He has provided for them even while they were in the wilderness. "I have led you forty years in the wilderness; your clothes have not worn out on you, and your sandal has not worn out on your foot." (Deuteronomy 29:5 ©NASB) Although the Israelites had to live through circumstances they didn’t plan, God was still leading them and taking care of them. The same thing can be said about you and me.

The music in your life may have drastically changed without warning. You may feel like it's been a long time since you were dancing to "O Happy Day" or "Walking on Sunshine," but in the midst of your situation, God is still good. He has provided for your needs. If you are still alive, it's because He has kept you alive and He has a purpose for your life-to dance this dance called life with Him, on His shoes, letting Him lead you in the midst of the ever-changing music.

*This post was submitted to Ann Voskamp's blog as an entry to win a scholarship to the She Speaks Conference. The She Speaks Conference is about women connecting the hearts of women to the heart of our Daddy. God has given me a message to share with women who are living their lives dancing with their Daddy as He leads them and women who have long left dancing on their Daddy's shoes in pursuit of something else. If you or someone you know is interested in learning how to connect the hearts of women with the heart of God through this conference, you can find out more info here!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

The Pearl

I recently received a beautiful pearl ring as a gift from my husband. This ring was something I had wanted for a long time and we spent a long time searching for the "perfect" one. I'm talking about, I was on a relentless search for this perfect pearl. Anywhere my husband and I went on a trip, we searched the jewelry stores but always came up empty. It was one of those times where I had in my mind exactly what I wanted, and I didn't really want to settle for just any ol' pearl ring. After months of searching stores and websites, we finally found it! We walked up to a jewelry counter, looked in the glass case to find the exact ring I had had in my mind! Not only was it the exact ring I was looking for, but they only had one and it was exactly my size - a 6 1/2! I instantly knew this ring was meant for me, I mean, what are the odds it was exactly what I had been searching for for so long and in my exact ring size?! It was a perfect fit! I was ecstatic! I had some other things I had picked out to buy at this particular store, but as soon as I knew I had found my ring, I put the other merchandise back so I would make sure I could purchase this ring! That's how excited I was that I had found this beautiful ring.

After a couple of days of wearing the ring, I noticed that because I was not used to wearing a ring on that finger everyday, it was starting to annoy me. I was tempted to take it off multiple times to keep from being annoyed, but everytime I thought about how it was rubbing on my finger, I looked at the ring and was reminded of it's perfect beauty to me! The thought of not wearing this ring that I had searched so long for was out of the question. When I looked at how beautiful it was, I knew without a doubt that it was going to stay on my finger and my finger would just have to get used to it.

As I was having these thoughts in my head, the Lord spoke to me. He reminded me of His words in Matthew 13:45-46

"Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant in search of fine pearls, who, on finding one pearl of great value, went and sold all that he had and bought it."

I was reminded that I have found the pearl of great value, one of far greater value than the pearl on my hand - the kingdom of heaven. It's worth any price, any discomfort, any inconvenience. It's worth me giving everything. When I look at it's beauty, it overwhelms me to the point that it doesn't matter what it takes, I'm holding on to it! It's the treasure that my heart searched for for so long, and I take great delight in my treasure!

God Almighty will be your treasure,
more wealth than you can imagine.
You'll take delight in God, the Mighty One,
and look to him joyfully, boldly.
Job 22:25-26

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

She Speaks 2011

I need to take a few minutes and tell you about a conference that is taking place in North Carolina this July. It's called She Speaks and it's specifically designed to equip women to effectively communicate God's Word. Whether your passion is speaking, writing, or leading women's ministry, this conference has something for you! You can find out more about the She Speaks conference here: She Speaks 2011

I had hoped to attend the conference last year, as I wrote in an earlier post, but we just couldn't afford it financially. This year, I am hoping to try again to be able to attend. Over the last year, God has opened doors for me to share my writing through a monthly column in a local Christian magazine and by writing a book and sending it to a local publisher. God is absolutely the giver of dreams and the One who turns dreams into reality! I would love to be able to attend She Speaks this year to gain wisdom about how to continue this writing process and how to effectively market my writing.

Look for opportunities to win a scholarship to attend the She Speaks conference here!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

My Perfect Weakness

"I will believe You are strong enough
in my weakness God be lifted up
and I will sing lift Your praises high
Lord be magnified You make all things new
I will believe"

These are the lyrics to a song we sang in church last night. After a week of being very frustrated by the different areas of my life where I struggle, this song came as a huge encouragement to me! I'm tired of being weak. I get frustrated when my actions don't line up with the way Scripture tells me to act. There are some things I wonder if I will struggle with until I die. I just can't seem to get them right. They are my weaknesses.

Can anything good come from me having weaknesses? Surely God can't use me unless I'm perfect! All through Scripture, our gracious God gives us examples of how He was glorified through the weaknesses of His children. Take Moses for example, when God called Moses to go command the Pharaoh to let the Israelites go from Egypt, Moses immediately focused on His weakness.

Then Moses said to the LORD, "Please, Lord, I have never been eloquent, neither recently nor in time past, nor since You have spoken to Your servant; for I am slow of speech and slow of tongue." (Exodus 4:10)

We know how the story turned out. God glorified Himself through Moses by speaking through someone who couldn't do it by himself. No one could have said that Pharaoh let the people go because Moses was a good persuader. He wasn't. It was his weakness.

What about Gideon? When God told Gideon to take his army and defeat the Midianites, Gideon's response was similar to Moses' response to God.

Pardon me, my lord,” Gideon replied, “but how can I save Israel? My clan is the weakest in Manasseh, and I am the least in my family.” (Judges 6:15)

The story of what God did through Gideon and the Israelite army here is so amazing. God took the Israelite army that was already the weakest and lowest in number, and decreased the number of men even more! With just 300 men, God worked in them to defeat the Midianites by simply blowing horns and smashing jars! Because of all the noise, the Midianite army was startled and ended up being so disoriented that they killed all of their own people! God took their weakness and turned it into a way for Him to get all the glory! He let them know through their weakness that they could boast only in Him! The stories are all throughout history and Scripture where God works through the weaknesses of His children so that He can get all the glory!

But what do we do? We try to hide our weaknesses. We don't want anyone to know that we aren't perfect. We wouldn't dare let on to others that we don't have it all together. They might discredit us if they knew what we struggle with! But did you know that in Scripture we are commanded to boast about our weaknesses?!

And He has said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness." Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me. (2 Corinthians 12:9)

We aren't suppose to hide our weaknesses, Scripture says we are supposed to boast about them and boast about them gladly! I don't know about you, but in the culture we live in where perfection seems to be the standard, it's not an easy thing to brag about the areas in my life where I struggle. But as I look at the examples God has given me of the amazing things He can do through someone who is willing to admit where they are weak, and as my eyes are opened to see that me having weaknesses is one way God can be glorified, I realize that there is so much freedom in boasting about my weaknesses gladly so that the power of God can dwell in me! It's incredibly encouraging!

So the next time I get a bad attitude that I can't seem to shake, I'm going to realize it's a weakness and instead of beating myself up about it, I'm going to ask God to glorify Himself through it. Once we overcome our fears of letting people know what our weaknesses are, God will be able to exalt Himself in our lives even more, and we will be less tempted in boast in ourselves!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

The Everlasting God

"For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him." Colossians 1:16

I've seen a lot of changes in my lifetime. I can remember the day I bought my first ever CD or compact disc. My parents even remember when they bought their first ever cassette tape. (If you are reading this and you're under 15, google it!) In history class, I remember studying the dates that different things were invented. Such as, the light bulb in 1879; the phonograph in 1877; the telephone in 1876; the first car in 1769. New things are created everyday that help make life easier. As some new things are created, other old things are put to an end. I can think back and give you a definite or at least an approximate date that certain things were created and certain things ended in my lifetime. We have birth dates that let us and others know when our life on earth began, and tombstones are placed on top of our graves when we die to let people know when our life on the earth ended.
All things that exist had a beginning and they will have an end. Perhaps that's what makes Abraham's name for God in Genesis 21 so difficult to wrap our minds around. Abraham was known for worshiping God throughout his entire life and journey that God had him on. In this particular instance in Genesis 21, Abraham is praising God for providing a well for them in the wilderness.

Genesis 21:33 says, "Abraham planted a tamarisk tree in Beersheba and called there on the name of the LORD, the Everlasting God."

Why did Abraham use this name for God, the Everlasting God? God had made a covenant with Abraham and also to the descendants and generations that would come from him. Abraham knew that this covenant from God wasn't just for the expanse of his life, but he knew this promise of God would go on even after his life was over. This is why he praised the Everlasting God. He praised the God who existed before him, and would continue to exist after him for generations to come.

I think sometimes it's hard for us to think about the fact that God had no beginning and no ending. We like things that are concrete. We like things that we can wrap our minds around. Personally, I get great excitement out of worshiping God as the Everlasting God because after all, who wants to worship a god they can understand and wrap their minds around? What God is doing in us and through us goes far beyond us. What God is doing isn't just about our few short years on this life, He is an Everlasting God and He is working throughout generations to accomplish His purposes. Remember, it's about more than just your life. God wants to work through you to do things that will far outlive your life here on earth. He is working in us and through us to do things that will last for eternity!

Monday, January 3, 2011

What's the Hammer For?!

Have you ever prayed a prayer similar to this? "God please just show me what You want me to do and I'll do it!" I know in my life I have prayed this prayer sometimes until I'm exhausted! I always find though, that God never seems to reveal His plans to me in great detail. If I get direction from God, it's usually a one-step plan.
I'm the type of person who wants to know all the details as soon as possible so I can get things done as quickly as possible. When I get home from the grocery store, I must get all of the bags inside in one trip as quickly as possible. My husband says I'm a "one-trip" kinda girl! If I walk up in the middle of someone telling a story, I need to be caught up on the details I missed as soon as possible! I'm always looking for a quicker way to do a task, even if that means taking a short cut. I like to know what's going on, I like to be informed, and I like to move quickly!
You can imagine the frustration of someone like me when God only reveals one step of His plan at a time. Sometimes I think, "You know God, if you would just go ahead and tell me where this all ends up, I could probably come up with a shorter way to get there!" Now of course I don't say that to God, but He knows that's what I'm thinking! "God, just go ahead and lay it all out for me so I can know what's going on!" He never does. It's always just one, small, SLOW step at a time! And even then it's not very detailed! So as I read this morning about a conversation God had with Noah, I was blown away and even filled with a little bit of envy at what I saw!

Genesis 6:12-22

And God said to Noah,"I have determined to make an end of all flesh, for the earth is filled with violence through them. Behold, I will destroy them with the earth. Make yourself an ark of gopher wood. Make rooms in the ark, and cover it inside and out with pitch. This is how you are to make it: the length of the ark 300 cubits, its breadth 50 cubits, and its height 30 cubits. Make a roof for the ark, and finish it to a cubit above, and set the door of the ark in its side. Make it with lower, second, and third decks. I will bring a flood of waters upon the earth to destroy all flesh in which is the breath of life under heaven. Everything that is on the earth shall die. But I will establish my covenant with you, and you shall come into the ark, you, your sons, your wife, and your sons’ wives with you. And of every living thing of all flesh, you shall bring two of every sort into the ark to keep them alive with you. They shall be male and female. Of the birds according to their kinds, and of the animals according to their kinds, of every creeping thing of the ground, according to its kind, two of every sort shall come in to you to keep them alive. Also take with you every sort of food that is eaten, and store it up. It shall serve as food for you and for them." Noah did this; he did all that God commanded him.

"Excuse me! God are you kidding?! You told Noah everything he was supposed to do and all that would happen to him and his family!" Now wait a minute, this just doesn't seem very fair. But just as I was starting to let this ruffle my feathers a little bit, I realized how overwhelmed I would've been had God told me I was going to build an ark, and that he was sending a flood to kill everyone on the earth except for me and my family! I also thought about how impatient I would have become when I built the ark and then had to wait on the right time for God to send the rain. You see, I'm quite sure God didn't choose me to build the ark for good reason. I'm pretty sure if I had been the one God wanted to build the ark, the scripture would've read quite differently. This is more like the story of Heather and the Ark:

And God said to Heather, "Get up." So God waited for Heather to get up and then said to her, "Look for a hammer." So Heather asked God, "What do I need a hammer for?" But God said nothing. Heather asked God again, "Why do you want me to find a hammer? What am I going to do with a hammer?" And God said, "Heather, go get a hammer." So Heather went and got a hammer. Then God said, "Go get some wood." And Heather replied, "But wood is heavy, if you would just tell me what you're going to do with the wood, I might can figure out something else to use that isn't so heavy and won't give me splinters!" But God replied, "Go get some wood..." ...You get the idea...

You see, I realized something else in Genesis 6. Verse 9 says that Noah was a righteous man, blameless in his generation, and Noah walked with God. Could that also be said of me? As righteous as I would sometimes like to think that I am, I hardly think arguing with God and refusing to trust Him when He tells me part of His plan is what you call righteous. I'm realizing my attitude needs to be less of "God, why do you want me to go get a hammer?" and more of "God, I will walk with you and trust you completely as I go to the store and buy a hammer."

So if you're frustrated with God right now because you wish He would just show you what you're supposed to do with your life, I would encourage you to stop, think back to the last thing you know He told you to do, and do it without questioning while you walk with Him in righteousness. Trust that He knows what's best for you. The truth is, most of us couldn't handle the stress of knowing that God wants to use us to build an ark! If we knew the extent of what God wanted to do through us in this moment, it might blow us away because we aren't ready yet. Let's begin 2011 by walking with God in obedience, a step at a time, so we will be prepared for whatever He's got right around the corner for us! I think it's huge!