I don't have long to write tonight, but wanted to share an awesome example of God's sovereignty in the "little things". Last night Josh and I led a night of worship. This was pretty different for us because we did not share any testimony. I led several corporate worship songs and Josh played some instrumental worship. I did a couple Scripture readings and prayer transitions between songs and people were invited to an open communion table. We always try to have a detailed plan about what we are doing and when in order to fit in the time frame of the service we are leading and to encourage a service that flows well so people are not distracted. Last night in particular, we wanted to have everything well thought out as it was a new format for us. We worked hard to have things planned down to the minute in order to fit in our allotted time. Right before the service, we found out that we had less time than we had expected and the order needed to be altered slightly. Josh and I scrambled to rearrange and I began the service feeling a little apprehensive about how the songs and Scripture readings would flow because of the last minute changes we had to make.
This is where I was so blessed to see God's sovereignty at work. Where I felt disorganized and anxious, God was working out His will. When the pastor came up to read a Scripture after our first two songs, I was blown away by how perfectly they led into the next song we had planned (after our last minute rearranging). What a perfect reminder of God's involvement in our lives. He knew the pastor would read that specific passage (no doubt He directed him to) and He knew exactly where it needed to be placed in our order of worship in order to touch hearts most effectively! I am so glad that God is willing to reach down and "mess up" my plans in order to lead me on His path and use me for His Kingdom!
This past Monday was my birthday and my request was that we take a trip to the coast. Our little family always spreads birthday love with signs. This year, they decorated my seat in the truck so I could enjoy them during our day trip! :) There was also a sign on the door to the trailer and Noah decided I needed streamers so he cut strips of notebook paper and taped them together, then hung it around the trailer. So cute!!!
I had a wonderful birthday! The drive was gorgeous, the weather was perfect, and the ocean was...well, it's the ocean so it was amazing of course! :) My boys always make me feel special and loved and this year was no different!
In other news, we've been spending a lot of time at the library. Because we're here for several weeks, we were able to get a library card which has been so much fun! I used to take for granted the ability to check books out from a library, but after two years of not having the opportunity, I realize now what a gift it is! The boys have loved having lots of choices and I've had fun reading some books that I wouldn't normally bring to take up space in the trailer! The boys have also had fun reading to the dogs that come twice a week.
When I realized I could check out library books I went right to the "home organization" section. For some of you this sounds weird, but there are others who I know would have done exactly the same thing! ;) I truly have an addiction for organization, lists, labels, and the like. I also discovered recently (when we sold most of our belongings in order to go out on the road) that I LOVE to purge. - think clutter not food, please! - I love to sort through our stuff and throw away and give away! So, I checked out a few books on organization and living with less and this was the result...
Most of this was stored under our bed, along with a myriad of other junk. I pulled it all out and began sorting...
It always gets worse before it gets better.
When I was a kid, I use to have days I'd decide to "clean and organize" my room. Two days later my room and the hallway outside of my room would look like the Tazmanian devil had visited. BUT, a day or two after that, my room would be immaculate, with everything in it's place.
Our trailer is three garbage bags and three paper bags lighter, and much better organized! Ahhhh, I feel better now! :)
About ten weeks ago I started an online bible study. I meet online with my small group once a week to discuss our current study. When I found this online group, they were just getting ready to start a Beth Moore Bible study called "Believing God". I have been a huge Beth Moore fan for years. God has used her books and live events tremendously in my spiritual growth over the years. God has used her to spur on my desire for the Word and my confidence and understanding of God's character. (Please note that I have not read any of her recent books or listened to her teachings lately, so I cannot speak to the accuracy or reliability of her current teaching. However, I do know that her past works that I've read are powerful and Biblically accurate as far as I can tell.) So, when I saw that they were about to start this particularly study I was extremely excited!
Little did I know just how divine this appointment was! You see, God was beginning a work in my heart about learning to pray bigger and trust God for mightier acts. I think that because He knew that He had big works in mind, He wanted to make sure my heart was in tune to His hand. He didn't want me to miss His biggness!
If you have been following my blog, you may notice the significance of the time frame for my starting this study. I did my first small group meeting on a Thursday and that very next Sunday we met the precious couple who own our new home! (see Big Prayers Big Answers) Needless to say, God answered a prayer that I had prayed and prayed - at first believing, but with time losing faith that He would ever provide. And then He did! He provided in a huge way!
This answered prayer shook our family! We were all blown away by how generously God had answered our prayer for a home!
Fast forward 9 weeks and you find Josh and I overwhelmed by a challenge in our ministry. This was an obstacle that we had tried for months to move aside, climb over, run around, tunnel under, and even break through, but we could not seem to get to the other side. We've been pleading with the Lord for direction and resolution, but we just haven't gotten anywhere. This struggle has caused me much anxiety and stress! I have felt like I'm carrying around a burden that is physically, emotionally, and spiritually draining. Then last Sunday, I felt the Lord very clearly tugging at my heart when Josh was playing "I Surrender All". I heard the Spirit whisper to me, "Will you surrender this? Do you believe that I am who I say I am? Do you believe that I will care for you and guide you? Do you believe me?" As a tear ran down my cheek, I realized that once again, I was not believing my God -my Almighty God, who is always faithful, always true! So I opened my hands and surrendered this burden that I have been carrying around.
I wish I could lay out all of the details of this past week. In less than a weeks time, God has completely . . . COMPLETELY . . . removed this obstacle. It is gone! Four churches later, we are confident that God has replaced this obstacle with an effective, fruitful ministry tool for spreading the Gospel! Oh, our God is sooooo good!
Tomorrow is my last small group discussion for this study. I am sad to be done with this study and yet I am full of anticipation of what God has in mind for the next study we will do together. In the mean time, I will continue to pray, trust, and rest in God's goodness and infinite wisdom! I will believe God!
Before I get into rotten pumpkins and cornundrums, I have to share these sweet words of encouragement that a precious sister in Christ shared with me this morning! These are words that the Lord spoke to her heart as she was battling feelings of defeat and worthlessness...
"all you ever have to be is my daughter and I have the final and lasting word on you and i I Call you my Beloved!"
My heart was so blessed by these words! What a gift to be the Beloved of the King!
The pumpkin patch that we went to Monday had the fullest pumpkin fields I've ever seen! It was beautiful! I suppose going so early in the month had a lot to do with that. We had a great time as a family hanging out among the corn and pumpkins!
There weren't actually any rotten pumpkins! At least not yet! We warned the boys, though, that in these temperatures a carved pumpkin won't last long!
We could not believe how TALL the corn in the corn maze was! This was, by far, the most fun corn maze we've ever done. It was just tricky enough that we needed a little bit of help from the map, but not so tricky that we got frustrated or bored! The boys especially loved it!
For those who don't know, my hubby is about 6 feet tall, you add in the length of his arm and the couple feet above his hand, and you're looking at corn more than 10 feet tall. It was awesome! You totally felt like you had disappeared inside the maze!
I love this handsome guy!
At one point, we were struggling a bit to progress in the maze. When we realized that this way was definitely wrong, Noah and I decided we needed to mark it to make sure we didn't go that way again! :) (Dont' worry! There were no corn stalks hurt in the making of this barrier - at least not by us! We got them from the ground!)
We had fun solving the periodic "cornundrums"! - John Deere! ha ha ha
Meet the three little pigs who outwitted the big bad wolf - Penny, Benny, and Lenny
Caden is looking to find just the right one to fit his LEGO magazine mad scientist stencil.
It was fun to goof around together for the day. It's been a while since we had all day to just "play" and we loved it! The boys and I are going to go back today after their schoolwork is done. We spent so much time in the maze on Monday that we missed quite a bit of the farm. We're anxious to go do some more exploring.
Hi! I'm Sarah
I'm so glad you stopped by! I pray you find encouragement and a reason to smile while you're visiting! If this is your first time on my blog, be sure to START HERE.
You will keep in perfect peace, him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in you.
Trust in the LORD, for the LORD, the LORD, is the Rock eternal.
Ezekiel & 1 Peter
(the Bible in a year)
The Gospel of Luke
(Women's Bible Study at Church)
The Seventeenth Swap
by Eloise Jarvis McGraw
(family read aloud)
by Jamie C. Martin
Mother and Son:
The Respect Effect
by Emerson Eggerichs