We are the called

Wow, I guess it’s been a whole week since my last post because today, we had another amazing message at church given by pastor Dave Mullins. I don’t know if it’s the place I am in my life, the book we are studying, or if we have just amazing pastors, but I am completely stoked at the directions we are headed as a church, not East 91st in particular, but as a church – the body of believers.

I’ve been struggling with Christianity in America for a few months now, probably thanks to our mainstream media. Just turn on the news, and our country/world is headed downhill fast. I have been feeling like in my lifetime, I would see our beautiful country of America turn into a socialist, Islamic country. Where are the Christians and why aren’t we doing something about it?!

Today, during Dave’s message, he mentioned a few “wins” that our church in particular has had. Just before writing my blog, I read a friend’s facebook status about a “win” her church recently had. The body of believers as a whole ARE making a difference. It’s hard to only hear the negative side of things, it’s nice to see that good does still exist in our country!!

“We are in a battle way more important than the Super Bowl” I heard Dave say today at church. I needed to hear that!! Last week’s message began the process of me thinking about my mission. I read a book this week by Julie Hadden, a contestant from the Biggest Loser, entitled “Fat Chance – losing the weight, gaining your worth” It got me thinking about my worth to Christ. (excellent book btw)

Am I living a life worthy of the call I have received?  All of us that are in Christ will have a complete life transformation. 2 Corinthians 2:17 reads, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!”  This has been a verse that has always meant a lot to me.  It reminds me to let go of my old ways and Christ has set me free from the bondage of that old life.  But Jesus says in John 14:9 “Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father.”  Can I say the same thing?  If anyone has seen me, has seen Christ?  Do I reflect Him appropriately?  Is my life transformation visible to everyone that meets me?  It’s easy to get caught up with what is not right with the world, or even our churches for that matter.  But let’s focus on what is right, what is good, what Jesus is accomplishing through those willing vessels!  I want to be one of those!! I don’t have to be the kid in the classroom with ants in my pants, hand raised in the air, yelling “pick me, pick me Jesus, I wanna be on your team”  Jesus has already “picked me”  I am a follower of His.  The question of the day is “does everyone I meet know that”  Jesus is the winning team, it’s already been determined.  He will return to this earth one day, and He will be victorious!!  I just want to make sure that those around me know which team I am on and want to join the winning team!!

I feel like 2010 is a big year of spiritual growth for me.  Not because God has new big plans for me, but because I am finally ready.  God has had big plans for me all along, I just haven’t had the confidence to follow Him completely.  I want to be utterly SOLD OUT FOR CHRIST!!  I don’t know why this has scared me in the past.  I guess all of us are a little afraid of change.  My biggest prayer is for God to give me the courage to really step out!!  I had a song run through my mind today while I was at church.  Although we had awesome music today, it wasn’t any that we sang.  It was Fence Riders by Jimmy Needham.  It made me think that maybe I have been a little bit of a fence rider in the past, but not anymore!!  I never rode the fence about who Christ was, or even following him, but maybe giving him my all!!  He sings “I’m sold out to Christ”  …and that’s my prayer!!

 

we serve a God of mission…

We had the most amazing message at church today. It was about finding out what our mission is. It isn’t okay for us to go to church-the building, every Sunday, sit in the pew, listen to the music, say hello to our friends, only to leave and say “that was a great message”. God is a god of mission, and He has a mission for each and every one of us. Our pastor for today had a great thought to ponder…who are missionaries? Are they “super” Christians that God has chosen? No, they are everyone that calls themself a Christian-You and Me!! We can’t call ourselves Christians without calling ourselves Missionaries! God has chosen each and every one of us for a mission!

For the last several years I have understood this “calling out” if you will. I understand that I am a missionary for God. However, the issue I have always had was knowing where I am supposed to be a missionary. For the last twelve and half years, it has been raising my children. I’ve also tried leading women’s bible studies, teaching 2nd graders at church, being a camp counselor for a summer camp, or diving head first serving at Great Banquet weekends. I feel like I have a little missionary ADD, so many passions and interests but not sure where God would have me devote my time. I guess the best place to start would be to spend some time with the One who designs the missions and take direction from Him! I understand that this can and will probably change on a day to day basis, but if I earnestly seek Him and be willing to go where He leads, I will most definitely be headed in the right direction.

So as this new year begins, my main mission is to follow anywhere I am led. To devote each day to serving the One who gave me life…and created a specific purpose for that life. If I focus on learning who HE is, then He will reveal who I am.

first day back to the gym…

today was my first day back to the gym. Granted, I’ve been doing yoga twice a week for several months now, but it’s the new year!! A time for resolutions, right? Have I told you that I HATE resolutions? Probably because my resolution has been the same for the last 15 years. Get our finances in order, lose 40 lbs, start eating right, become more organized, keep a clean house… the list goes on and on. Obviously, I am doing something wrong! So this year, I’m changing it up a bit! I’m going to learn to enjoy life, love myself, and love my family- I will succeed with this one because I can only accomplish all this through loving God, first and foremost!! I am one incredibly blessed person. I have a husband that loves me even with 40 extra pounds, but also loves me enough to encourage me to get healthy!! I have terrific kids, even though they drive me crazy at times, they are awesome!! I’ve found a way to turn my love for food into a healthy alternative, learning to eat cleaner and try new stuff!! I got the go ahead from my husband to hire someone to help with the housework (finally, after 15 years!!) and money, well…I’ve recommitted to Dave (Ramsey, that is) We’ve tried this before, but again, my follow through issues!!

So here’s to a positive outlook for 2010…may your blessings be many!!
with much love…
Mendy

Here’s to 2010

today is the first day of the rest of your life. I’ve decided to keep a blog…what does this mean or look like? I’m not sure. I don’t even really know what I want to accomplish, but I know that Brian gets tired of me posting everything in our life on Facebook, so this will give me an avenue to share my thoughts, dreams, goals, visions…you name it! My creative outlet. ha!!

Last year, I took on many new hobbies; my garden, my chickens, trying to be a ‘clean eater/cooker’, if I document all that I have learned over the last year, then maybe it will all make sense. Let me start at the beginning.

In January of 2009, while facing my husband’s unemployment, I had this crazy revelation from God. I’ve never really had God speak to me so clearly, and I really don’t understand His reasonings, but He told me…
Mendy, you have a few acres in the back not being used, it’s gone to weeds. Plant a garden, use it to glorify ME. okay, so maybe it wasn’t audible, and maybe it came across a little different, but those where the words I took from the message. God was telling me that although my husband was losing his job, He has blessed us tremendously. We are fortunate enough to be living in my childhood home, on 8 acres, we should use it and not let it go to waste. I have tried gardens in the past, small ones that start off with the best of intentions, only to turn to towering weeds by the end of summer. You can imagine Brian’s reluctance for me to start another one! Much less the one of the magnitude I was imagining- 40’x40′!! Brian told me right off that this was my project and he wasn’t helping! He knew that I’ve failed at every one I’ve tried in the past and what’s going to make this one any different?

So I research, and research, and research!! My specialty, you see, that’s what I’m good at…follow through, not so much! But as Brian is gone away for training for his new job (fortunately he was only out of work for 3 weeks) I hire an out of work friend to install a fence. We have lots of deer. I begin to get things ready for planting. I’m not going to get into all of the detail of planning, but the garden was a success! I realize that I spent a ton of money to get it started, and didn’t sell much of my harvest nor can it for that matter. The knowledge I gleaned about myself, I couldn’t have found anywhere else! I actually finished a project!! I’m usually an all or nothing kind of person, and I didn’t give up when things weren’t perfect. Yes I had weeds, yes I let a lot of my stuff go to waste, yes I actually had to buy produce from the farmer’s market to “put up” but I told myself that’s okay!! Things will be better next year! I’m learning!!

At Easter time, as my boys and I were in Tractor Supply looking for garden stuff, we noticed they were having their “chick days”. The boys asked if they could each have a chick for Easter. Why not? My good friend Jane had been trying to talk me into getting chickens. After I bought 2, I called Brian to see if he would build me a chicken coop. He was reluctant to say the least. He wanted me to tackle only one project at a time, the garden was enough. But I pursuaded him to do it. Keep in mind, I already purchased 2 chicks!! But I then ordered 26 more! On June 8th (our anniversary) I got the call from the post office that my chicks had come in! They sent me a bonus chick, so that brought my total to 29. My nieces then talked me into finding cochins, the kind with the furry feet. I got 5 more- total 34 chicks! As it turns out, 3 cochins are roosters.

Okay, this post is getting very long…I’ll wrap it up. I can’t get all of 2009’s lessons into one post. But I look forward to 2010, my new hobbies, and the lessons God has in store for me. I have a sense that the direction our country is heading, it’s going to be a good thing that I am learning to provide for my family. I have found a sense of peace from working with the blessings God has given me. I may hate to pick weeds from my flower beds, but working with my hands in the garden is somehow different. I find it exciting to think that I can feed my family on what I have grown! I’m working toward self sustainability! I know I will never be completely there, but working towards that goal is fun!! I’ve found a peace and joy that I’ve never experienced. Hopefully this blog will record the journey…the first day of the rest of my life!!