Tuesday, December 20, 2011

And The Operation Christmas Child Boxes Went To....

"Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights" James 1:17a

One of my favorite things to do every year is make Operation Christmas Child boxes for the Samaritan's Purse.  It's an activity that goes on all year.  When I see things that are cute or a good deal, I buy them and store them in my closet until November.  Then at the beginning of November, our family packs the boxes full of all kinds of goodies.  Things like cars, balls, dinosaurs, candy, flashlights, coloring books, socks, toothbrush, soap, a Bible, etc.  I show pictures of boys and girls receiving their boxes to Brody so he can understand what is going on a little bit better.  It really is a fun thing to do as a family.

The past three years I've paid online to get a bar code in hopes to find out where the boxes were shipped to.  Year one and two I didn't get an email. That's ok because we prayed over the children who would get them and it really does not matter what country the boxes went to.  I was just curious.  This year I got the email, and the boxes were sent to Ghana.

It's very neat to know where the boxes went to.  I can show Brody a map of the other side of the world, and he can see what country the children who get his boxes are from.  It makes it more real to him, and as I family we will pray for the children in Ghana. 

I'm very thankful for the Samaritan's Purse for giving our family the opportunity to do this every year.  It is just one more way to show God's love to people.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Go Tell it in the Parking Lot

Go, Tell It On The Mountain,
Over the hills and everywhere;
Go, Tell It On The Mountain
That Jesus Christ is born.

Yesterday at the grocery store, I found myself weary.  There were things we needed, but I just wanted to be home.  I was trying my best to hurry through the store.  After a long wait in line, I finally made it out of the store.  I felt like yelling "FREEDOM!"  I put the few groceries in the car and started towards home.  Then I saw a young woman holding a sign asking for help.  My first thought is "I'm too busy for this."  I took a deep breathe, then sighed as I pulled over.  I knew what the right thing to do was, but I was having a selfish moment.  I prayed for God to tell me how to help her and to help me change my attitude.  God always answers...maybe not in a big loud voice but His Holy Spirit moves my heart.  On the radio, "Go tell it on the Mountain" was playing.  That was my answer.  I need to tell people God loves them whether we are on a mountain, in a valley, in our home, or in a parking lot.  She needed money, and she needed to hear someone loves her.  God loves her just like He loves all of us!  And that is too good of news not to tell.

Christmas is a busy season, but it should never get so busy that I don't stop to share God's love.  There would be no Christmas without Him.  I would not have a life without Him. 

I may just have to re-write the old carol to "Go Tell it in the Parking Lot." 

Friday, December 2, 2011


When ours are interrupted, his are not. His plans are proceeding exactly as scheduled, moving us always (including those minutes or hours or years which seem most useless or wasted or unendurable) "toward the goal of true maturity."  - Elisabeth Elliot

Thinking about plans today, and I thought about Elisabeth Elliot's quote on plans. I can't help but smile when I think about how God's plans are always exactly as scheduled.  Some days like today, I question God's plan for my life.  I'm a very ambitious lady, and I feel like I'm just standing still lately. But at the same time, there is peace at being exactly where God has me.  I suppose it is strange how the times in my life that have been busy or scary have been easier for me than this slow paced time.  Life is so flexible at the moment that it has given me many new opportunities to minister in my community that I normally would not have.  God is maturing in this season of my life for something.  I have no idea what His something is, but I'm going to trust Him.  I'm sure one day I will look back at this time of rest and be very thankful for it.

Elliot's quote comes from Romans 12:2 JBP  "Don’t let the world around you squeeze you into its own mould, but let God re-mould your minds from within, so that you may prove in practice that the plan of God for you is good, meets all his demands and moves towards the goal of true maturity."

Here is a couple more versions of Romans 12:2

"Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will."  Rom. 12:2 NIV

"So here's what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for him. Don't become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You'll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you." Rom. 12:1-2 MSG

God brings the best out of me....with His plan!