Tag Archives: gospel

January 25, 2009

Romans 10:1-8

 1 Brethren, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for Israel is that they may be saved. 2 For I bear them witness that they have a zeal for God, but not according to knowledge. 3 For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and seeking to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted to the righteousness of God. 4 For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes. 5 For Moses writes about the righteousness which is of the law, “The man who does those things shall live by them.”6 But the righteousness of faith speaks in this way, “Do not say in your heart, ‘Who will ascend into heaven?’ ” (that is, to bring Christ down from above) or, ” ‘Who will descend into the abyss?’ ” (that is, to bring Christ up from the dead). 8 But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart” (that is, the word of faith which we preach):

 

 

 

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Life Lessons

  • We should desire that others follow Jesus and find love and forgiveness.
  • No one can ever truly be self righteous.
  • We will never be declared innocent through good works.

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Operation Christmas Child

Every year around the holidays you notice a rise in non-profit organizations advertising and it can get overwhelming on a person who wants to help in some way to choose who to support. So I thought I would take a moment to share with you one of the organizations my family support every year, Operation Christmas Child. Operation Christmas Child is part of Samaritan’s Purse where Franklin Graham has been the President since the 1980’s. OCC collects shoe boxes filled with much needed items for children and are sent all over the world. Most of all each child who receives a shoe box will also hear the Gospel and a chance to start a relationship with Jesus Christ.

My husband and I have been packing shoe boxes for years now and here are a few reasons why we do it:

  • We love picking out the items that go in each box really thinking about what the children could use and would enjoy.
  • We always choose to track our box because we just think it’s the coolest to know where our gift went. Once we know we end up looking up the country to find out more information about it. (We’re kinda nerdy like that.)
  • Most importantly why we do this is the fact that we know that these wonderful children will be receiving the greatest gift of all, THE GOSPEL! (we also include a Bible in every box)
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We were able to pack 10 boxes this year and hope to double that next year.

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My youngest helping short threw all the donations that were given to go in the boxes.

This year we decided to host a shoe box packing party at my house and it was so much fun I can’t wait to do it again next year!

 

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My mom trying to figure out how to fold the boxes.

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My mom hard at work coloring the worksheets to go in the boxes.

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People signing-up to track their boxes.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So when considering where you want to give to this year I hope Operation Christmas Child will be on your list and you’re just in time because this week is National Collection Week.

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Finding Your Fulfilling Purpose- Nichole Howson

photo 5aAn Interview with Nichole Howson, author and creator of defyingshadows.wordpress.com.  Nichole is a Business student who grew up in a town outside of Windsor, Ontario, on a dairy and cash crop farm where she learned what it means to work hard, and what is involved to be successful. She is an avid coffee lover who enjoys a good action film or a chick flick, depending on the day, and enjoys reading both non-fiction and fiction books in her spare time. She takes great joy in organizing, scheduling, and participating in social media. She has a passion for volunteerism, but more specifically helping those who are hurting, whether it is emotionally, physically, or mentally. Nichole hopes that her future career will embrace these passions, and allow her to help others in a larger capacity.

Q: For God has “called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace which as given to us in Christ Jesus before time began” (2 Timothy 1:9) When and how did you know what God’s plan was for you?

A: I knew that God had great plans for me when I was in High School. I knew I would be involved in a ministry but I was unsure as to what ministry it might be. I thought maybe I was meant to be a pastor, so when I started college I began attending Bible College.

I soon learned that God had a different plan for me. It wasn’t to be a pastor. I learned that my Ministry may not be as big as I thought, but it is most important to God.

Q: Once the Lord spoke to you about your purpose did you obey right away or did you struggle?

A: When I finally head the purpose that God had for me, I waited. I wasn’t sure if I was ready to open up about my deepest and darkest moments and bare my soul to world. I spent time in prayer and God showed me that although I felt I might not be ready, that I was in fact more than ready and should be excited to share my passions with others.

Q: What obstacles did you have to overcome and/or still run into?

A: Having a ministry that includes writing about Mental illness is purposehard. It is hard to hear the stories of others who are struggling. The first email I received sharing their heart breaking story, I cried. But I knew that I needed to pray. I prayed for that person. I prayed for me. I prayed and I asked God what wisdom He wanted to share with that person. I let God lead my words and when I did that, it suddenly became easier. Sure, it is still hard, but I have a peace that comes from my faith in Christ.

Q: Is what you are doing currently fulfilling? In what ways?

A: When I first started my Blog, I told my friends and family that this made me happy. It really did. It is so fulfilling knowing that you are doing what God wants for you. Knowing that you are fulfilling God’s purpose for you life.

Q: Do you recall a time when you lacked peace about a job or situation and how God delivered you out of it?

A: Ever since I started my blog, the Devil has been attacking me. I struggle with mental illness just as my followers do. The Devil attacked me and slowly slid anxiety, fear, and depression back into my life. Writing blog posts on being happy, or trusting God suddenly became so much harder. When I realized that I was under the attack of the Devil I prayed. I asked God to heal me and show me what He wants me to do next. When I put my trust in God, my peace was restored.

listen to his voiceQ: What advice to you have for women who are still searching to fulfill their purpose?

A: If you are still searching to fulfill your purpose, please keep praying! Even if you have found your purpose, keep praying. God will show you what He wants you to do. It might not be right away. He might only show you the first step in His plan, but follow Him and your purpose will be made clear.


I would like to thank Nichole for taking the time to be interviewed and sharing a piece of herself with all of you.

Connect with Nichole!

Website: http://defyingshadows.wordpress.com/
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acebook: https://www.facebook.com/defyingshadows
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witter: https://twitter.com/NicholeHowson
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interest: http://www.pinterest.com/nicholehowson/
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umbler: http://nicholehowson.tumblr.com/
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inkedIn: http://ca.linkedin.com/in/nicholehowson

 

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Finding Your Fulfilling Purpose-Jackie Dixon

DSC_8662-3267286275-O copyAn Interview with Jackie Dixon, the head of VLX, a media & coaching organization focused on delivering information about body, beauty, and relationships to women around the world.

Q: Share a little background about yourself.

A: I was born and raised in the Washington, DC area and studied medical writing and technology at Johns Hopkins University and Georgetown University. I’ve worked for years in ministry and as a professional model, and I’m passionate about teaching women how to take care of their bodies, beauty, and relationships in a Biblical way that honors God and frees them into all of the abundant life we can experience this side of heaven.

Q: For God has “called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace which as given to us in Christ Jesus before time began” (2 Timothy 1:9) When and how did you know what God’s plan was for you?

A: My calling developed over time. I grew up watching many close relatives struggle with illnesses and disease. Sometimes they won their battles, and sometimes they went home. I remember crying out to God in the midst of all of this pain, asking for comfort, and asking for a role to play that would allow me to help, and reduce unnecessary suffering for others. In high school, this very clearly blossomed into a passion for health, and through a series of divinely guided decisions, I headed off to study medical writing at Johns Hopkins University – but that was only God’s Part 1. 🙂

Q: Once the Lord spoke to you about your purpose did you obey right away or did you struggle?

A: Well, first the purpose grew. While I was at Hopkins, I realized that health is complicated – that it involves much more than just our weight and blood pressure – and that even our efforts to care for our physical temples can be stymied by our deep emotional blocks and wounds.

Unfortunately, I had my own blocks and wounds to deal with, and out of confusion and exhaustion, I spent the first two years after Hopkins living in my parents’ basement, without a job, lost and stuck in my own deep wounds (that I didn’t even know I had!)

I had to work my way out of these wounds with God’s truth, grace, and love, and as I did, I realized that these issues were other sides of health that people needed help with.

Q: What obstacles did you have to overcome and/or still run into?

A: I had to deal with the fear of being bold with the truth. What if they don’t like it? What if they don’t want to hear it? What if no one cares? I have to tell myself over and over – and pray frequently! – that there are many people who do want this information and encouragement, and that even if they didn’t, the Word of God simply must be shared.

Q: Is what you are doing currently fulfilling? In what ways?

A: ABSOLUTELY!!! I speak on the topics of Biblical body care, beauty, and relationships, and coach women in groups and individually as well as lead them through an online course called Body Stewardship. Watching their eyes light up when they realize how much bigger God’s vision for their health in all these areas is, and then watching those who take action feel the freedom from being out of these sneaky shackles is AMAZING. It’s an incredible honor to work as God’s tool to set others free!

Q: Do you recall a time when you lacked peace about a job or situation and how God delivered you out of it?

A: I was working for a church and the time had come to leave – the job I was originally hired for had transformed and I was no longer doing work in my strong areas. But the ministry year was busy and I felt I would let my colleagues down if I left. However, I was in full-time grad school, in my first year of marriage, and had recently moved to a home an hour and a half from my work and school. It was just too much at one time, but I couldn’t see a reasonable way to escape. God came through big time! My husband is in the Marine Corps, and was offered a 6-month post in Florida. Suddenly I had a gracious way to leave my job, bring my life back into balance, and have the time to launch my company!

Q: What advice to you have for women who are still searching to fulfill their purpose?

A: Make sure it lines up with God’s word. I really believe God blesses things which align with His truth – and people are desperately searching for it!

Make sure you love it – you will need the passion to fuel you! Even the most blessed endeavors require some blood, sweat, and tears to bring them to life. Be sure that you are sufficiently interested in and passionate about the area you are working in, as that will get you through the valleys!

DO NOT GIVE UP!!! The marvelous callings of our hearts can change the world – and therefore there is much warfare and resistance against them, from inside our heads with all of our self-sabotages and doubts, to outside forces trying to discourage us. Take it slowly if you need to, but never give up, never give up, never give up!!!

That being said, don’t hold the original plan too tightly, as God may detour you and reveal a slightly different plan as you go along. Be persistent, but open. 🙂 After all, the goal is to serve Him, not to cling to our own objectives!


 

I would like to thank Jackie for her time in doing this interview and I encourage all of you to connect with her.

Website: http://jackiedixon.org/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/JackieDixonVLX
Twitter: https://twitter.com/MmeJackieDixon

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There Was This Girl…

There once was a little girl; skinny, long stringy hair, and wore glasses who smiled just like the rest of them. But there were a few things different about her, she didn’t like to go home because she never knew what she would come home to. You could catch her wearing long sleeves in the middle of summer to hide the bruises, all the while telling herself if someone only asked why I would tell them. It was the late 70’s people didn’t get involved or ask questions.

Growing up in this environment had her seeking safety any where she could find it. She would stay with friends and family as often as she could anything but home. One day she noticed a church bus that would come around the neighborhood picking up kids to take them to Sunday School, so she started going as often as she could again anything but home! While going there she learned of Jesus’s love for her and that she had value something she never really felt before.

As she got older she still attended church once in awhile but the pressures of teenage life began to sat in and in walks this boy. He was funny, charming, and a football player and most of all he made her feel loved and worth something. Finally she had found someone to love her the way her parents neglected to do and one thing led to another she got pregnant at age 18.

The boy begins to disappear from the picture and quickly starts a relationship with another girl, so much for prince charming. She tells her mom who after calling her all kinds of horrible names instructs her to have an abortion. But because she knew in her heart that this baby was a person, who had value and deserved to be loved all things she was taught while attending Sunday School she refused to get an abortion.

Nine months later a beautiful baby girl was born, she looks down at the baby looking up at her and it was the first time she felt true love. She vowed to love her the way she was never loved…Soon after she finally had the courage to move out of her parents home to protect her daughter from them. With a police escort and time limit to grab what she could she was finally away from the home she never wanted to go to.

The parents of friend took her and the baby in and adopted them into the family. She now was loved by her daughter, her new adopted parents, adopted siblings, and in less than a year her future husband.

This little girl had a very tragic childhood that many of us would struggle to overcome but as you can see God was with her the whole time by placing people in her life when she needed them the most.


 

35b6a862b273ae9a3d433095290819e1I want to thank that bus driver for picking kids up and taking them to church. I want to thank the teachers that took time to love on this little girl and teach her God’s word. I want to thank all the friends and family who took her in their homes. I want to thank the cops who watched over her as she left and kept her safe. I want to thank the family that adopted her and now are closer than any blood relatives a person may have. I want to thank the man who chose to love not only her but also her daughter unconditionally.

If you are a follower of Christ and serve in some way don’t ever think that you’re not making a difference! That bus driver had no idea that every-time he picked this little girl up that was one less beating he just saved her from. Those Sunday School teachers had no idea that the words they taught her would help her to choose life over what the world wanted her to do. As servants you never know how God is going to use you but know that it will always be for HIS GOOD and HIS GLORY.

Thank you for all of you who serve the kingdom of God and I truly mean that from the bottom of my heart because this little girl is my mom and the baby she didn’t abort is me! 

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Finding Your Fulfilling Purpose-Joyce Brown

An Interview with Joyce Brown, creator of www.crazypastorswife.net and soon to be author.

Q: Share a little background about yourself.

A: I married my Pastor 14 years ago when he was an Army Chaplain. He retired in 2005 and we took a small “Baptist” church which is now “the Grace Place Church” and non-denominational.
I am writing a book with short funny stories about being married to a Pastor and the things that happen on Sundays and everyday. I find humor in everyday life!! I have 3 boys that I also write about. They keep me busy. Even at 36, 21 and 17.
http://www.crazypastorswife.net

Q: For God has “called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace which as given to us in Christ Jesus before time began” (2 Timothy 1:9) When and how did you know what God’s plan was for you?

A: In 2005 after I became a Pastor’s Wife at a small church of 30 people. I knew God had a Bigger plan and he sure did because now we have over 2,000 members.

Q: Once the Lord spoke to you about your purpose did you obey right away or did you struggle?

A: I struggled with trying to the “Perfect Pastor’s Wife” I did not feel worthy.

Q: What obstacles did you have to overcome and/or still run into?

A: To be me! The woman God made me to be.

Q: Is what you are doing currently fulfilling? In what ways?

A: I am speaking, blogging, writing a book and teaching Bible studies.

Q: Do you recall a time when you lacked peace about a job or situation and how God delivered you out of it?

A: Yes, at times I get really down thinking we need to get out of ministry. But then God always shows me tag is not His will. And I need to just put my big girl panties on and deal with it!!

Q: What advice to you have for women who are still searching to fulfill their purpose?

A: Pray Pray Pray!! Read the Bible listen and sing worship music in your car at home wherever even if you can’t carry a tune like me. Seek wise counsel of Christian Women that are where you want to be Spiritually.

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Finding Your Fulfilling Purpose

“who saved us, and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before times eternal,”
2 Timothy 1:9

Reading this verse made me question what God’s purpose for my life wastumblr_m8lzbhQQ2x1rr4b87 and was I fulfilling it? I really struggled that staying home taking care of the kids was my full purpose in life that there  had to be more something bigger I was meant to do. My husband goes to work everyday and comes home with a new story about who he shared the Gospel with and I think to myself how rewarding that must feel going to bat for God everyday.

It wasn’t until I shared my concerns with my pastor’s wife when she so lovingly explained to me that every victory my husband has is a victory I share with him. He wouldn’t be able to do what he does with out the support of me praying for him and taking care of the kids and household. She also went on to explain that since my children are so young God may have me in a season where my family is my purpose and when they are older perhaps God will have different plans. I was so encouraged by what she had to say and the fact that she too struggled with the same thing when her children were young. (Shows the importance of sharing with one or two trusted people because if I was left alone with my thoughts I could of easily fallen into a depression.)

having the eyes of your heart enlightened, that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints, (Ephesians 1:18)

So with a new outlook on my life I am finding fulfillment in the smallest of things. When my daughter remembers something we learned in home school or when my youngest prays when we have a meal.

jeremiah 29 11Since I struggled to find my fulfilling purpose at first, I will be doing a series every Friday of other women who found God’s purpose for their lives. I hope this series encourages you to listen for God’s voice and obey so you may live up to your potential!

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From one Beggar to Another

“I’m just a beggar trying to tell other beggars where to find food.”

Was a quote from the guest pastor who spoke at our church yesterday evening. To understand how powerful this statement is you must read 2 Kings chapter 7 which is where he taught last night and the importance of sharing our faith. 2 Kings 7:9 reads

Then they said to each other, “What we’re doing is not right. This is a day of good news and we are keeping it to ourselves. If we wait until daylight, punishment will overtake us. Let’s go at once and report this to the royal palace.”

This verse means nothing to you if you are not a believer but if you are this should weigh heavy on your heart! The moment we accepted Christ as our Lord and Savior is the moment we are also given the great commission Matthew 28:19-20…

 Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,  teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Amen.

I know fear can overcome us when we want to share our faith, thoughts run through your head “What if they laugh at me?” “What if they hate me?” “What if…” the list goes on but as it says in 2 Kings 7 what’s the worst that can happen to you, you die? There is no higher honor than to lose your life for the sake of the Lord, and on a personal note the joy you feel after you share the GOOD NEWS with someone is the best high you can have! After sharing my faith with my friend I was so on fire I was looking around going “Who’s next?” I still get scared and nervous and I know there are many opportunities that I miss because of it but I am praying for a heart that is for the lost so much so that all my fears don’t even matter! Like Matthew 28:20 says “I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Wow what a promise and such an encouragement!

Are we not all beggars?

Are we not all beggars?

So to close I will say this “Go out beggars and share the bread of life with all the other beggars!!!”

Jesus replied, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never be hungry again. Whoever believes in me will never be thirsty. ~John 6:35

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