I’m a Believer

…blessed is she that believed… -Luke 1:45

Linky Blog Love – The Deep End March 9, 2009

deep-end-pool-2I thought I would share with you one of my favorite blogs on the internet, my husband’s blog – Swim The Deep End.

Sometimes he’s got a Bible study going on, sometimes he’s Just Sayin’, sometimes he’s playing doctor, or teaching S.W.I.M. lessons.  Occasionally he’s having a bold conversation about Jesus with a professing atheist.  Often, he shares quotes from admirable people of faith. 

There is only one complete and total inaccuracy on his website.  In this quote about me you will also discover his delightful unique sense of humor and gift for sarcasm:

She is sleek and fast in the water, sort of a cross between a torpedo and a Mako shark. You should see her rocket up out of the surf onto a floating inflatable raft. Simply spectacular.

What can I say?  I married a marvelously complex, multi-talented man who also has a love for God’s word.  So long as he’s swimming the deep end and not going off the deep end, I’m grateful. 

Stop by and take the opportunity to either SINK or SWIM.

II Timothy 3:16 “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:”

God’s Holy Word is the instruction manual for life. In it we find doctrine (what is RIGHT), reproof (what is WRONG), correction (how to DO right), and instruction (how to STAY right.) If we don’t look in God’s Word, and learn how to S.W.I.M. (See What It Means), then we run the risk that we might S.I.N.K. (Step In Not Knowing). Spend time reading your Bible each and every day. God’s promise is that it is “profitable.”

I’m a Believer!

Laura

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What Should I Get? March 2, 2009

In keeping with my “New Year’s Revelation,” here are a few more things we need to get, straight from God’s word.  (They would all make great t-shirt slogans, wouldn’t they?)

life-cerealGet a Life!

He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life ~1 John 5:12

 

dallas_cowboys_helmet_rightface1Life’s Tough, Get a Helmet!

And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:  ~Ephesians 6:17

 

hands-holding-bibleGet a Grip!

Therefore, brethren, stand fast, and hold the traditions which ye have been taught, whether by word, or our epistle.  ~2 Thessalonians 2:15

 

 

What do you need to get from God’s word?  Leave a comment & let me know!

I’m a Believer!

Laura

 

Oh, The Depth of the Riches… February 18, 2009

I haven’t been writing much lately (as you can tell), but I have been studying in preparation for upcoming ministry opportunities.  In looking back over old beach retreat information, I found something I had written after one of our ladies’ retreats.   I thought I’d post it here.

May, 2007

bw-beach-girls3Imagine standing at the edge of the seashore with our toes barely at the surf line, occasionally the waves reach out and touch us, lapping at our feet. Sometimes we take this touch as an invitation, and wade deeper; sometimes it makes us run backwards, depending on our desire to get wet. Often, we have stood at the edge of God with our toes (and our hearts) barely at the edge of what He has for us. Occasionally He will come closer to us than He has been, and we find ourselves ankle deep. To some of us this is thrilling, to others of us, frightening . Sometimes we wade deeper into Him, sometimes we retreat, because we are just not ready to get that wet, to be fully immersed.

We stand as sisters, united through Jesus Christ, yet all separate people. Some older, some younger, both physically and spiritually, all wanting to go in the same direction, but not knowing exactly what is out there, beneath the visible surface. Some of us are looking forward, towards the unknown vastness of what God has for us, some looking back at the footprints of where we have been, all of us at the edge of possibility in God.

As we stand at the edge of the seashore, it seems as if we are touching eternity. These same sands and waters have been here since “God created,” and have touched the feet of countless souls. The ocean is so much like God-much more vast and powerful than we can ever imagine. All we can experience with our mortal bodies is the surface. When we, through faith, allow God to be our sustainer, we are carried up over the tops of the waves, into the midst of deeper love and trust. The ocean is always moving, never standing still, changing the shoreline and nearly everything it comes into contact with, but it is always the ocean. So God is-eternal and unchanging, yet infinite and never standing still. Once you have been touched by God, your shoreline will be changed, and your rough edges washed away.

And so we stand at the edge, dressed in His righteousness, ready to go forward, linked up with our sisters. As we hold hands and proceed forward we are able to help our sisters overcome when the waves get big, to go back and pick them up when they get knocked down, to bring them forward when they fall behind, to laugh together as we triumphantly make it over the top of another wave, and to encourage each other to go deeper.

O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out! ~Romans 11:33

I’m a Believer!

Laura

For more on the deep things of God, visit my husband’s blog at  www.swimthedeepend.wordpress.com.

 

Get to Gettin’! January 6, 2009

Throughout the holiday season, I found myself doing some serious “getting” !  I had to go GET groceries, go GET the kids, GET a gift for a party, GET ready to go.  People asked me “What are you GETTING for Christmas?”  I had to GET some things done.  I needed to GET my house clean, GET my Christmas tree, GET the ornaments down from the attic, GET the tree decorated.  With all that “getting” I also GOT tired!!!

As I was reading the Bible yesterday morning.  I came across this verse:

Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding.  ~Proverbs 4:7

This verse really spoke to me.  First, because it was worded in a way that makes it humorous to me.  It sounds like something I would tell my kids – “Go get your backpack and everything you need, and with all your getting get your dirty clothes off the floor!” 

But as I looked at it further, I noticed that it really speaks to what needs to be first.  It says “Wisdom is the principal thing…”  The word that is translated “principal” means FIRST, BEGINNING, BEST, or CHOICE PART.  As I start 2009, I need to first seek wisdom.  I need to start from the beginning looking for wisdom.  I should know that wisdom is the best thing.   Wisdom should be the part that I choose first and foremost.  Wisdom is what I should be GETTING! 

And not only that, with all the time I’m getting all that wisdom, I need to get UNDERSTANDING.  I’ve found that it requires UNDERSTANDING to apply wisdom in any way that is helpful.  What good is all the wisdom in the world if I don’t understand how to use it or apply it?  The word UNDERSTANDING in this verse also means discernment.  Boy, do I need some discernment!  There are so many things I need to understand about God, about His word, about what His word says about me.  I also need understanding in dealing with other people.  I need to understand what their needs are.  I need to have discernment about how God would have me minister.  I need to understand what God is trying to teach me at any given time.  I NEED understanding!

I don’t do well with New Year’s resolutions, so this will be my New Year’s “revelation”: 

GET TO GETTIN’! 

This is going to mean spending more time in God’s word and at God’s side.   I do pray that God gives me the spirit of wisdom and that the eyes of my understanding will be enlightened so that I can KNOW what it is that He has for me and just how powerful our God is !

[17] That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him: [18] The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints, [19] And what is the exceeding greatness of his power to us-ward who believe, according to the working of his mighty power,   ~Ephesians 1:17-19

Happy New Year!  Go get some wisdom, and while you’re at it, don’t forget the understanding!

For more on what you can get from God’s word, click here.

I’m a Believer!

Laura

 

Women’s Conference Update November 13, 2008

Dream Team 2008

Dream Team 2008

Our Dream Big Women’s Conference was a tremendous success!!  Pictures are posted at our church website… here.  I’ll post more later, but wanted to put the photo link up quickly.

Also, my friend Rena posted her testimony about the conference here

We’d all love to hear your thoughts and testimonies if you attended.  Leave a comment when you get a chance and share anything the Lord showed you through this ministry.

CLICK HERE TO LISTEN TO DREAMS PASTthe message I preached at the conference.

I’m a Believer!

Laura

 

Daily Mercies – The Best Way for Bad Things to Happen November 10, 2008

daily_mercies2My friend Rena & her sister Ginger have started a new “meme” called The Daily Mercies in which we are encouraged to share a story or testimony of how we’ve seen God’s mercy at work in our life or in the lives of others.  What a great idea!  I’m so excited!  Now I’ll have a place to record all those wonderful moments when I get to see God’s hand.  At the moment it happens, His hand may be SO OBVIOUS, but in a few days, or in different circumstances, I’m tempted to forget those “Daily Mercies” that He shows me.  So thanks, Rena & Gin!  You’ll help me to remember…

Remember his marvellous works that he hath done, his wonders, and the judgments of his mouth; O ye seed of Israel his servant, ye children of Jacob, his chosen ones.
1 Chronicles 16:12-13

So, for my first Daily Mercy, I would like to share with you how God can allow bad things to happen to you, but happen in the best way possible.

As I pulled out of Hobby Lobby parking lot after a delicious lunch with my friend Rena, I thought about which way to go.  Left to the interstate – quicker.  Right to the back way – less traffic…  I decided to go right, the back way.  Something seemed daunting about the interstate. 

As I drove down the road about 2 miles from Hobby Lobby, 3 miles from the interstate, 6 miles from home, 20 yards from a stop sign, and 100 yards away from an old bridge in the middle of road construction, my gas pedal suddenly went to the floor, all the dashboard lights came on, and my three year old van stalled.  GREAT! (That’s a sarcastic “GREAT”, by the way.)  As I tried to crank it again, it WOULD NOT START!  So, I sat.  A sitting duck in a bright blue van 20 yards away from a stop sign. 

I tried to turn on my flashers.   My battery was so dead, I could not even turn my flashers on.  I tried to put the van in neutral so that I (haha) could push it onto the shoulder and out of the main lane.  The battery was too dead to allow me to put the car in neutral.  What???

And so I called my friend who has recently decided that she will not talk on the phone while she is driving.  Great idea – but I think she was driving when I called.  No answer.  I promptly forgot that my other friend lived 2 minutes away, so I didn’t call her.  Then I remembered the ringtone on my phone  “When you call on Jesus, all things are possible…” it sings at me regularly.  So I called on Jesus and tried to start the car again.  Nope.  So I called my husband at work, my regular knight in shining armor who always comes to my pathetic rescue when I need it.  The rescue is not pathetic – no, it is far from pathetic, it is always selfless and noble, and I’m grateful for that.

As I sat IN THE MIDDLE OF THE ROAD, I figured I better get out of the van in case anyone plowed slap into me as I waited for my hero.  Alrighty then – There I stood, beside a stalled car.  The children would be getting off the bus in 45 minutes.  Oh look – I suddenly saw a tow truck.  “Maybe he’ll stop!”  (That’s me talking to myself.)  Nope.  Sit, sit, sit.  Wave to direct people  – “Just go around it.  I’ll just stand here.  Thanks for stopping. ”  (More sarcasm – no one had stopped.)

Aha!  A police car!  Yes!  “Hey!   Yooo hoooo…”   Wave, wave, wave…. Over here!! Wave higher, wave bigger, wave louder….  Oh – he turned.  But look – that creepy guy that looks remarkably like the uni-bomber is headed my way.  He must have thought I was waving at him instead of the at the cops.  I wonder if he’ll let me borrow his “hoodie” or his mirrored sunglasses, or maybe his house shoes. 

A black pickup truck pulled up behind me, just as UniBomber made his way to my front fender.  The kind, older, trustworthy-looking man inside asked how he could help.  He jump-started the van so that we could put it in neutral and push it onto the LOVELY CORNER LOT that I was just inches from.  He shoooed away UniBomber and assured me that he “Had his eye on that fruitcake.” 

Five minutes later, my knight in shining Mazda showed up and took it from there.  

What on earth does that have to do with the mercy of God?  I’m so glad you asked. 

I’m learning to be thankful to God for times like this.  Times when it is inevitable that something has to go wrong – car batteries and pcv hoses (whatever that is) don’t last forever.  It was time for my van to break down.  But the breakdown didn’t happen when I was flying down an unknown interstate in Georgia just the week before.  It didn’t break down in the middle of New Orleans while I had a vanload of kids only 2 days before.  It didn’t break down on a rickety bridge.  It didn’t break down on the interstate.  It broke down just inches away from a lovely corner with plenty of room to park.  My husband was not in court or in an appointment when I called.  The uni-bomber didn’t get me. 

I believe that God’s MERCY has to do with His witholding bad things from us.  God withholds so many bad things from happening to us every day.  We usually don’t know the extent of His mercy towards us.  Sometimes, though, as in this instance, we get a little glimpse.  It was time for my car to break down – it was time for “something bad” to happen.  But God allowed it to be in the best way possible.  He loves us, He wants good things for us, and many times He provides those things by His mercy. 

This is why Jesus says that we can have peace.

These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.  John 16:33

Did you hear that?  Jesus says that we can have peace in Him.  In the midst of the troubles of this world (i.e., car trouble), we can be of good cheer – that means happy and not anxious, because He has overcome the world.  When we are in Him, He can allow us those breakdowns that have to happen, but they can be turned into breakthroughs when He has directed our paths.

I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help.  My help cometh from the LORD, which made heaven and earth.  He will not suffer thy foot to be moved: he that keepeth thee will not slumber.  Behold, he that keepeth Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep.  The LORD is thy keeper: the LORD is thy shade upon thy right hand.  The sun shall not smite thee by day, nor the moon by night.  The LORD shall preserve thee from all evil: he shall preserve thy soul.  The LORD shall preserve thy going out and thy coming in from this time forth, and even for evermore.  Psalm 121:8

I’m grateful that my help comes from Him and that He preserves me and keeps me and that His mercies are new every morning.  Visit Rena & Ginger to hear what else our merciful God is up to.

I’m a Believer!

Laura

 

Challenged by True Christianity October 29, 2008

Filed under: Bible,Christian Living,faith — Laura @ 8:48 am
Tags: ,

I came across this video on youtube and found it very challenging to me and to my faith and what I am supposed to do about my faith. Strangely, I agree with nearly all this man says, until the end. Watch it all the way to the end, and see if you are not only surprised, but also challenged.

So… whaddaya think?

I’m a Believer!
Laura