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He holds is up!

I love science experiments and using them to teach. Any fellow visual learners out there? Last week at WBS I used water, a cup and index card to illustrate trust in God. We filled a cup with water and held an index card over the top. After pressing down on the index card for a few minutes we flipped the cup over and removed our hand from the index card. Guess what? The water remained in the cup.

It is the air pressure pressing upwards (stronger than gravity pressing downwards) that held the water in the cup. We can’t see the air pressure but we know it must be working or the water would drop out. We can’t see God but we know that he is there holding us up and supporting us too.

Week three women’s bible study is tonight and I hope that you will join us. ❤️🎉

She’s ready!

I’ve wrestled over the past few years while trying to decide how to school Ellie. Should we homeschool her? Should we send her to a school? What if we fail her in either choice we make. In the wrestling I was able to hear Gods constant desire for Ellie. Jessie always knew sending Ellie to school was what was best for Ellie but knowing my struggle with letting go, he left the decision in my hands. He was ok with what I chose. I went back and forth several times. Praying through the entire process, finally I woke up one morning and the “peace that surpasses all understanding” (Philippians 4:6) flooded my heart. I knew! The wrestling was over. The only peace I felt was in the direction of sending Ellie to school. Jessie felt the same. The decision was made and excitement and peace has continued to grow. I’m so thankful for those who have prayed along side us while we made this decision and those who have encouraged me to only focus on what God has called me to choose for Ellie. The confidence Ellie has as she walks into her first day is so encouraging. The excitement she has to make new friends and learn new things brings me so much joy. Her eagerness to meet a friend who does not know Jesus so that she can introduce them to Him makes all of this make complete sense. She is confident! She is excited! She is eager! She is loved! She is prayed over! She is ready!

“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.” John 14:27

Starved

STARVED!

I was 14, I just walked in from dance  practice. It was chili night. I HATE CHILI!!!!. I opened a can of peaches and poured them into a bowl. I took one bite and suddenly I was disgusted. I quickly dumped them in the trash and went to bed. I woke up the next morning and had this sense of accomplishment. I skipped dinner! I DID IT!! I was so proud. That is when it began.

At 14 I  began to develop this love for hunger. I felt as if I had more energy and more joy.  I felt in control of my emotions when I was hungry. I felt powerful, valable, and noticed. I felt strong even when in reality I was so weak.  It suddenly became a game; how long could I go without eating? How hungry could I feel before I passed out? It wasn’t about weight in the beginning. However, the deeper I fell into this game, the more I began to hide my  deep rooted pain behind calorie memorizing , numbers on a scale and obsessive working out and I was trying to hide it all.

Eating disorders do not go away overnight. I’m not always so strong in this area. I still struggle with the mental thoughts and longing to go back a lot. Im headed in the right direction though. I’ve traded calorie memorizing with scripture memorizing because His word is truly alive and active.

“For the word of God is alive and powerful. It is sharper than the sharpest two-edged sword, cutting between soul and spirit, between joint and marrow. It exposes our innermost thoughts and desires.”  Hebrews 4:12

I’ve traded multiple weight checks a day to make sure I haven’t gotten too fat with multiple moments a day of check in with Jesus. I talk to Him often. I would weigh myself three or four times a  day. At one point I came home during my lunch everyday because I worked close to home. I came home just to weigh myself and the number on the scale would determine if I got to eat lunch that day.  

I’ve also traded the silence with sharing. I don’t want to keep my struggles silent because I know there are others who need to know that they are not alone.

When I started eating again, the more I ate the more mental clarity I had to recognize the voice of the eating disorder. This disorder that told me I was in control, I looked amazing, I could go one more meal… This disorder was actually controlling me. I could see that when my body wasn’t completely starved.  Some of us as christians, we are starving for the word of God.

Our spiritual stomachs are so empty that we cant determine the difference between the truth from God and the lies from the enemy. Take a moment to allow that to sink in. We need the word of God and we need constant communication with Him daily. The more we read His word, the more time we spend in prayer and fellowship with other believers the more we start to recognize the weapons that the enemy is using against us. I’m talking to myself and I just hope I have a fellow friend out there in the same spiritual boat. I hope I’m not alone. I hope I’m not the only one who struggles to make time to read His word and to talk to God. I do struggle with this. Not because I don’t want to make him the most important part of my life but because life has a way of becoming so filled with day to day obligations that putting God first feels impossible but ITS NOT. We can’t let it!

Three things to start now…

  • Read one scripture each day!
  • Talk to God. Just like you would a friend. He’s not shocked by anything you say.
  • Find a local church to be part of. Fellowship with others who are believers is important!

“For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that fully well.” Psalms 139: 13-14

Painful Ice!

I love Ellie’s excitement for learning. She is always asking questions to learn more. She is always making observations. She is always asking to learn new words. Yesterday she came home from church and told us…
“Jesus helps us with our sins!”
So thankful for the amazing volunteers we have who pour into our kids each week.
In Kids Life yesterday, Bruce talked to the kids about forgiveness. Forgiveness requires a heart change. You cannot continue in your sin yet expect Jesus to forgive you. Each child was handed an ice cube with a button inside. They were asked to hold the ice cube in their hands until it melts. It was not easy. It was painfully cold and difficult to continue holding in their hands. Many of them dropped it or put it down and began smashing it with their water bottle so they wouldn’t have to feel the pain of holding it. When we begin to have our hearts changed by Jesus it does not always feel great. It is often a painful experience. However, if you hold on long enough you reach freedom. There is freedom in Jesus if you just continue to hold on and not let go.

Crayon Drip With Jesus!

We had to do a last minute Switch A Roo with a craft this past Wednesday for VBS. I searched several stores for materials that I could not find. It happens! However, I’m glad we switched at the last minute because we switched to a really big hit. We had the kids make these cool crayon drip art pieces. Even the boys got into it! If you work with kids, you know first hand that not all boys are a fan of craft time. It’s challenging finding crafts that fit their personalities and get them excited to participate. After glueing the crayons to the top of their canvas, the boards were sat outside in the heat.
As the boards sat in the heat outside they began to melt causing crayon wax to drip down the canvas board. The more sunshine that hit the crayons the more beauty that continued to drip. The crayons were changed by the heat. When we follow Jesus, he is the heat that changes us. When we surrender our lives to Jesus he changes our hearts. We become more like Him and less like the world. Just as the crayons melted down creating a beautiful piece of art, We also become more beautiful the more we know Jesus.

“Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me.” Psalms 51:10

Also, all the other craft materials have been located and we will continue with that craft on Sunday. Life doesn’t always go as planned. There are moments when you have to be ready to make it happen in a different way.

Thanks Kayla for the photo. We will be posting final results later this week.

Let God Shine!

Children’s ministry is so fun!!!! It’s more then fun though. It’s rewarding. Watching little hearts find Jesus and know they are just as capable of sharing His love with the world as adults is awesome. If I’m being real I would tell you kids ministry is a struggle too. It’s a struggle when you find yourself comparing your ministry to another Kids Ministry out there. Do you ever find yourself comparing your ministry with another? I find myself doing just this. I compare our Kids Life to a ministry much larger with more kids and more resources. Guess what?!?! Every ministry regardless of its size has the same amount of Jesus. You were not called to look like the kids ministry at the church down the street. That’s why you are not there. You are in your ministry because God knows you have what is needed to help shape the ministry the way He has designed it to be. Be true to what God has called you to do. Sure! Share resources. Call on friends in the same type of ministry. I’m only saying shape your ministry around the heart of God and not the heart of others. What is He calling your specific ministry to look like? What do the people in your ministry need? God hasn’t called us to be the same for a reason. Let God shine in your ministry the way He wants and cheer other ministries on as they too are letting Him shine.

2 Chronicles 29:11

My sons, do not neglect your duties any longer! The Lord has chosen you to stand in his presence, to minister to him, and to lead the people in worship and present offerings to him.”

A Clean Heart!

In preschool we talked about forgiveness. God forgives us and we can forgive others. We read the story of The Prodigal Son while we drew pictures on a laminated heart. At the end of the story we took a baby wipe and cleaned our hearts. When God forgives us He washes our sins away. Noah spoke up and shared…

“When my friend Ellie pushed me down the stairs she told me she was sorry and when I was done being mad I forgave her!”

😂😂😂

Noah shared a perfect illustration of forgiveness. Thankful for all our preschoolers are learning about the Love of Jesus. ❤️

The Jump!

The jump!

Today Ellie braved the jump! It only took 20 minutes but she did it! 😂😂😂

Sometimes jumping in is the hardest part. Not just into the water either.

It was time to get Kids Life open after the big covid shut down. I just had to make it happen. Even with limited volunteers I knew it was time. I was terrified. I didn’t just want to open so that we had childcare available. Kids life is more then childcare. I wanted to open so kids could have a place to learn about the love of Jesus on their level with kids their age. But how could I make this happen with a limited list of volunteers? I wrestled with God. I made so many excuses and threw a fit when I thought it was not possible and then I decided to jump. He made it happen. It was never on me!!! No! We still don’t have enough volunteers. Don’t get me wrong. We may only have a few volunteers at the moment but let me tell you we have the best. All of them serve multiple times each month. They come ready to give God their best. They love on the kids, pray for the kids, have fun with the kids and most importantly each week they point the kids to Jesus. We jumped in and watching God move has been constant and so worth the jump. He has not failed us once in kids life sense reopening or EVER for that matter. There have been Saturday nights when I didn’t know how we would make it work that Sunday. Then I get a text early Sunday morning, or have a volunteer ready to serve again but NEVER have we had to say we do not have enough volunteers for Kids Life that day. We jumped in and God caught us and He still has us.

I want to pause for a moment and say this is not a guilt trip. This is only me conveying the message that when you jump in for God He takes care of the rest. I know there will be a day when we have 100% of our volunteers back. I know those who are not serving yet have a reason and I respect their choice. Our current volunteers serving and our volunteers who we can’t wait to serve with again hold the same value in kids life. They ALL love Jesus and they ALL want our kids to love Him too.

Jumping in is scary!

Jumping into healing

Jumping into a new opportunity.

Jumping into a new mindset.

Jumping into a new Friendship.

Jumping into a relationship with Jesus.

Jumping back into life after covid is probably the most scary jump for some right now.

Jumping in for Jesus is scary. Jumping takes courage. Jumping means you set your eyes on Jesus trusting that He will catch you. Jumping has pushed me into completely knowing that what we do each weekend in kids life is because of Him and Him alone. It has nothing to do with me and EVERYTHING to do with Jesus.

In whatever way you are jumping in for Jesus (figuratively speaking) and no matter how overwhelming the jump might feel, just jump. Jesus is there waiting to catch you.

“You keep him in perfect peace

whose mind is stayed on you,

because he trusts in you.

Trust in the LORD forever,

for the LORD GOD is an everlasting rock.”

-Isaiah 26:3-4

❤️

7 Years! 🎉🎉🎉

Happy anniversary to this stud Muffin with his sexy calves and all. They say marriage is not 50/50 but 100/100. Both husband and wife need to give 100% to the marriage. This past year Jessie gave more then 100% at times. He stepped up when I could not! He never shamed me for needing the extra help and he never complained either. Even when I wanted Sonic cheese sticks and

Chick-fil-A everyday of my pregnancy (honestly after too) he would drive me there at a moments notice. Throughout this year he often pointed out all the things that make me great when I wasn’t feeling my greatest. He has always been my number one fan on earth. Each year in marriage is a different kind of season but I’m so thankful and blessed to share every season with Jessie. Jessie, thanks for all the foot rubs, pep talks, secret ice cream trips when both kids fall asleep in the back seat, walks around the neighborhood, being my personal body guard when I’m scared to be in the church alone working at night, an ear to listen when I drink too much Baja blast and can’t stop talking and mostly thanks for all the laughs. Thanks for all the jokes that I always pretend to annoy me. You keep life funny and we all need more funny in our world. I love you Jessie and no matter what the years bring you will always be the one I look for in a crowd. Like seriously! Even if The Rock was in the crowd I would still look for you!

Happy 7th Anniversary!

Ecclesiastes 4:9: “Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor: If either of them falls down, one can help the other up. But pity anyone who falls and has no one to help them up. Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm. But how can one keep warm alone?”

An Army at your heels!

I absolutely love putting together the Kids Life curriculum. It’s fun to take the lesson each week and make it come to life with fun crafts, object lessons and other activities. I’m always on Pinterest looking for the most fun and engaging activities that relate to each week’s lesson. There is so much I want to do better when it comes to building a curriculum that helps grow kids who know and love Jesus for life. Ellie helped me design this sensory bin for our preschool lesson on Moses. The kids were given the opportunity to retell the part of the story when God told Moses to raise his staff to part the Red Sea. They used the balloons on the sides to pull up and part the sea. I found our little Moses character at Goodwill. While putting the Moses lessons together I learned something I missed out on all these years. When the Israelites were standing in front of the Red Sea before it was parted, there was an army behind them getting closer. They couldn’t get away because there seemed to be no way out. The Israelites were scared but Moses told them “God will make a way for us to escape!” He did. Just then the clouds moved behind the Israelites to block them from the army coming after them. The Red Sea parted and the Israelites were free. God always makes a way. We can sometimes be like the Israelites scared because we hear the army getting closer. We have no idea how God might be blocking that army from us while He makes a way out. Even if the army is right at your heels don’t stop trusting that God will part the Sea in front of you.

“I am the Lord, who opened a way through the waters, making a dry path through the sea.” Isaiah 43:16

Read: Isaiah 43:16-21