Romans 12:2

Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Fears and Uganda part 2

Uganda!!  Part 2

This is the part that is way LESS fun to experience or read about.  After having a day of excitement and praises of thanksgiving about our upcoming trip to Uganda, the old familiar FEARS set in within hours.
  I went to bed on high and in the night woke up with FEAR on my brain.
finances...sickness....(those are just a few to give you an idea)
  I should know better than to entertain FEAR, because I know this is NOT from the Lord.  But, I laid there and did just that, and entertained it, (for several hours) until I finally drug my fanny out of bed and opened up God's Word and the verse that I immediately landed on was:

Hebrews 13:20-21English Standard Version (ESV)

20 Now may the God of peace who brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, the great shepherd of the sheep, by the blood of the eternal covenant, 21 equip you with everything good that you may do his will, working in us[a] that which is pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.

I was once again at PEACE.
  I should know better, and the minute I feel fear sneak in, battle it with God's Word. 
 For me, even praying as I lay in bed doesn't always work, because my mind wanders. 
 I need God's Word and His truth, so I can even pray.

Romans 8:15English Standard Version (ESV)

15 For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!”

I was telling my sister about this and she asked what my fears were....and I just went through the short-list...she could totally relate and yet reminded me where fear comes from.

1 John 4:18English Standard Version (ESV)

18 There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not  been perfected in love.

I wish I could say this completely took all my fears away, but it didn't.  It is a minute by minute thing with me.  I have to stay so saturated in the Word and Worship music and prayer right now to just keep the peace and stay on track.  

Matthew 17:7-8English Standard Version (ESV)

But Jesus came and touched them, saying, “Rise, and have no fear.” And when they lifted up their eyes, they saw no one but Jesus only.

I can tell you what I know without a doubt is this:
  I fear God more than all the other fears that I could list.
(and I could give you quite a list)
  I don't fear that God will not love me, or that He will disown me if I don't go.

I fear that I will miss out on something that He has for me and our family. 
 I have prayed with such sincerity that our family as individuals and as a family would live for God and that He would allow us to be a part of something He is doing and He is answering. 
 I don't want to miss out!

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Uganda, Here We Come. part 1

We are going to UGANDA!!!!
We have been praying for a year about going during the Christmas season.

I have given God every excuse in the book and He has absolutely blown away all my excuses.

I know, I sound crazy, but that is how I roll.  
I pray about something on my heart and then I give God every reason in the book that He can't and shouldn't answer.

It's like my heart wants to go, but my fears all scream
* Stay home, hunker down I know a million things could go wrong.*

As I was struggling through this process, which is a process for me, it came down to the wire and it was 
 like a pile of
 I want to go, I need to go, my family needs to go.

 I finally worked through all that and decided to take a giant leap of faith and buy the tickets. 

 Charlie, of course is totally on board, but it is always so much simpler for him.
He prays...he says let's do it and it's over in his mind. 

 I'm the one with the "issues".  
 So, when I finally got the courage up to commit and go, I couldn't get tickets to go through to save my life. 

I kept asking the Lord,
"Is this a NO"?  I was still asking and wanting confirmation over and over.

*Gideon has nothing on me...I think I would have sacrificed a whole herd sheep by shaving off their fleece and putting it out for confirmation.*.

I worked on those darn tickets for a solid week!
 I thought it's a NO and God is being pretty clear.
I was disappointed and relieved all at the same time.

for some reason I kept having this EXTREME nag in my heart, that we were to GO.
I could not let it GO!

Sunday we had an incredible sermon (thank you Priester) and our pastor talked about
 "Praying it Through".
Praying until you get a break through.
I was determined to pray until God broke through.

I didn't care how He broke through I just wanted PEACE and I did not have it!
I didn't care about the answer at that point 
yes or no
I came home from church and started in on "praying it through".
Of course I had to still go through the motions of life, because it took
 3 DAYS!!!
*I am especially stubborn...ugh.*
As we all know life goes on,kids need fed, work needs done,but every spare moment was spent with 
I was desperate and I was telling HIM about it.

I woke up EARLY on Tuesday morning and had a very special time with the Lord.
  I just felt His peace for the first time in a while. 
His Words were jumping off the page.

 My focus was not Uganda...just THE LORD OF PEACE!

I then went to my computer a few hours later and pretty casually searched out the same thing I have been for a solid week and I noticed if we chose different dates, maybe it would work better for our schedule.  I called Charlie asked if he thought I should try it, and within an hour I had 7 tickets purchased to Uganda with the best schedule I had seen in this whole process!

It was a BREAKTHROUGH!!!  

Mind you the PEACE came BEFORE the answer.  
I don't know why He does it this way,but I can't give any praise or glory to "getting tickets"
it was a
from the 
 and then other stuff fell into place.

2 Thessalonians 3:16ESV

16 Now may the Lord of peace himself give you peace at all times in every way.The Lord be with you all.

We are excited and full of
I'm especially getting FULLER every day.  hehe.

This is only part 1.
God has already been working on this trip...He just needed to get me lined out first. 

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Happy Anniversary! Years 15-20

These years were some of the most disappointing in a few ways, but they also prepared us for the next 5 which have been some of the best in every way.

When I think of this particular group of years....I think of them as the Feed Barn years.  We bought a feed store business that was a dream come true in many ways.  We were so excited for all the potential that it presented.  It was pretty short lived though, as we were partners with another couple and it didn't work out.  We owned it for only 27 months.

We had a lot of hopes and dreams attached to this business and when it didn't work out like we thought, we were absolutely distraught.  We had never experienced that level of stress that came with the disappointment of the whole situation.

But God!!!
He made beauty from ashes.

Isaiah 61:3 New International Version (NIV)

    and provide for those who grieve in Zion—
to bestow on them a crown of beauty
    instead of ashes,
the oil of joy
    instead of mourning,
and a garment of praise
    instead of a spirit of despair.
They will be called oaks of righteousness,
    a planting of the Lord
    for the display of his splendor.
  He brought such sweet and needed lessons and some amazing new friendships out of a very difficult situation.

The gal that worked in the office with me has become one of my dearest friends.
She is a prayer partner and a friend and a mentor to me.
  I used to tell her.....if she were the only good thing that came out of that experience it was worth every bit.  
I truly believe that.

The BLESSING of those years that overshadows the memory of the stress-filled years was that at the end of our time at 
The Feed Barn I became pregnant, and Reece Charles was born in December 2007. 

 I can't think of any better way to get my mind out of the pit of disappointment than to focus on a new precious energy filled life.  We, of course did not "plan" it...and YET, the timing was PERFECT and it was just what we needed to get our eyes and our attention on BLESSING.
  Focusing on a new baby and blessings and being grateful for all that God has done and was continuing to do became much more productive than focusing on "what could have been" with a failed business venture.

I would not trade the lessons and the growth and the friendships that came out of this time, but I'm sure glad it's behind us.  

Saturday, November 1, 2014

I'm not being quiet because I'm in a pout, it is actually quite the opposite. 
 It has been a season of me being
 SPOILED stinking ROTTEN. 
 The Lord has just lavished His blessing, favor, wonderful people, and fun times on me.

It started with going to Arizona and spending time with my sisters. 
 Ya...that's right...all 4 of us in one place for a whole week-end. 
We had a great great weekend with one another and with extended family as well.

It has been a fun season of sports for the kids. They have had major winning seasons in football and volleyball.  We even got water boy, Reece involved, so he had something very active to do while I sit and try to watch Luke and Mik at the same time on the football field.

Esther's volleyball team went undefeated.


Me and a few of the kids got to go see the all the Bowen babes!! 

It was way too short of a visit but VERY VERY sweet and full of fun!!!!


Lashae, me, Shawnie and Maddie got to go see Beth Moore!!!  EEEEEK!!!
  It was A.M.A.Z.I.N.G.
The teaching for the weekend was all about BLESSING!!! 
Beth spoke an incredible BLESSING on all the unborn babies in the place.
It was of course, a blessing all about JOY.

 When I got home I had 2 of my favorite friends to greet me.

  I am supposed to be hosting my sweet friends, Deborah and Patience, and instead, they are cooking and cleaning like crazy women.
  They have just spoiled me and the family rotten.
  We are eating like Ugandan kings and queens and we have never seen such a clean kitchen. 
 It's a bit wild how it all happens....I eat and walk away to do something..*I'm easily distracted*....and I come back and the kitchen is sparkling.  They also have spoiled the kids and done their chores as well.
 They have cleaned the barn and stalls. 

 I had an ultra-sound and we are definitely having a GIRL. 
 She is perfect, and looks just like Moo.

  Luke was awarded the Principal's award last month for
 "Perseverance and Grit"!!!  

    Thank you Jesus for all these people, places and events!!! 
 I am BLESSED  to the very bone.