Saturday, August 28, 2010

What's Your "Theme"?

I'm backkkkkkkkkkkkkk! Didn't get a blog in last week. Things are heating up as we get closer to coming back to the states to get our very first "Team" for the School of Global Leadership. Just this last week...we visited the Department of National Security in Port of Spain, wrote and delivered a proposal for student housing, continued our search for a van, went to the licensing office and started the process of getting our Trinidad Drivers Licenses, continued working with Ash to get through Biology, put more finishing touches on our stateside orientation, purchased tickets for the team leaving the states on the 20th of September, went to a deliverance service, two church services, took Ash to a youth service. I'm sure I'm forgetting something...but you see that life has not been dull or calm! We are learning so much and at the same time realizing we have a lot to learn!

One of the things I have enjoyed, been blessed by and impressed with as we have traveled to more than one Open Bible Church is their yearly "themes". Sometimes it's on the front of the building, sometimes it's hung over the platform or both...but there is always a banner with a yearly theme and a scripture. Last week the church we visited had a theme of "The Year of Irreversible Goodness", another church "A Year of and a Year for Change", another "A Year of Promise". I love it! It is like speaking life into your future before it happens! What is my yearly theme? Well...I would certainly say this is a year of change for me, a year of transition, a year of refining...Hard to choose just one! For the sake of this blog, I will choose "A year of Change". When we are considering our yearly theme, let's make sure we focus on what God says in addition to how we feel. When I say "A Year of Change", that is an understatement. I could focus on how the "change" wore me out and down, how it didn't feel good at times etc. the midst of change, I am reminded of several things. I am reminded that God does not change, He is my constant, my true North, my refuge, covering and safe place. That's Truth! So put whatever name to your year that works for you...but ALWAYS INSERT GOD! The Word of God has a promise you can stand on, find it and stand on it...write it down, memorize it, speak it to yourself and out loud to others. Remind yourself again and again.

You know what I like about a "Yearly Theme"? It has a beginning and an end! Yep, God is always doing a new thing. Enjoy your year or at least learn from it and don't get too comfortable...a new theme is on it's way! Oh and make sure your theme is so big and impossible that it requires God. He smiles at that and is pleased, because without faith it is impossible to please Him!

Well, that's it for now. I will try to write next week before we leave for the states...until then, that's my take on it!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Living In The Moment

My Devotions this morning were about "Living In The Moment". A very hard thing for me to do...It brought back to my memory a poem that I read on a poster as a teenager. I was able to find it to share with you!


I was regretting the past, and fearing the future. Suddenly my Lord was speaking:"My name is I Am". He paused. I waited. He continued, "When you live in the past, with its mistakes and regrets, it is hard. I am not there.My name is not I WAS. When you live in the future,with its problems and fears,it is hard. I am not there. My name is not I WILL BE. When you live in this moment it is not hard. I am here. My name is I AM." ~ Helen Mallicoat ~

Helen never had it copyrighted because she believed it was a gift from God. It came to her in the middle of the night and has circled the globe many times. Hallmark itself has used it millions of times according to the late Helen Mallicoat.

My head and heart are almost always somewhere other than the here and now . Much of my emotional energy is used up in wishing something had been different or in hoping something will happen. Worry usually has little to do with what is going on right now, but rather on what has happened or what I think will happen.

Here's another one:

"Worrying is carrying tomorrow's load with today's strength- carrying two days at once. It is moving into tomorrow ahead of time. Worrying doesn't empty tomorrow of its sorrow, it empties today of its strength."
Corrie ten Boom

I am so tired of re-learning simple truths. May God forgive my lack of trust in Him.

What is He saying NOW. What is He doing NOW. What does He want from me NOW. A popular Christian song years ago was entitled, "One Day At A Time, Sweet Jesus". I remember my Mom telling me years ago that sometimes a day at a time is too much, sometimes we need to go moment to moment.

A friend sent me a devotion this morning about whispering the name of Jesus in the midst of the storm swirling around. It reminds me that He is with me.

A few short notes:

We are looking for a permanent vehicle and are believing God to provide what is needed for the school. Everything is very expensive here. That is one surprise for me. The exchange rate allows our U.S. dollar to go further, but many things are more expensive and so the exchange rate doesn't help in the end.

Trini's smile and/or give me a strange face when I ask about thrift stores and getting gently used clothes or furniture etc. One of them said, "why would you want used? Most of used items are junk". We find that to be true. You need to know someone who knows someone to get certain things. May God give us supernatural connections!

We are feverishly working on Stateside orientation with our team coming for the pilot year of the School of Global Leadership. What is impossible with man, is possible with God! Prayers are much appreciated.

I am not sleeping well. Can't get to sleep at night and then when I wake up, my mind starts racing...Please pray.

Ashleigh is finishing up Biology...then we order 11th grade curriculum. Pray that this next school year will go smoother.

Much transition...May God help me to live in the moment, whisper His name, remember He is the God of the impossible and trust Him.

That's it for now...until next time...that's my take on it!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Home Sweet Home!

I've heard it said, "If you don't learn the lesson the first time, sooner or later, you will have to repeat it". 

It has been hard to be unsettled for about a year, living out of suitcases and not having a place to call home. We spout cute sayings like, "Home is where the heart is" and as Christians we want to smile and say that Jesus is all "the home" we need. I wish I could say that it was/is easy to discover "Home" is Jesus, but I can't. I am on a  determined journey to find the "Secret Place" that the Bible talks about, however, I am finding it does not come easy for me and I am convinced it is a lifelong discovery.

I do believe that I am willing to do anything God asks of me, even if it means not having a place to call home, so perhaps I have learned enough of a lesson, for now... 

I also believe that God built into the human heart a longing for "home". We are referred to as "Strangers and Aliens" on this earth, so obviously our ultimate home is heaven, but...I think God understands the need for "home" since He built the need for it into us. 

Having said all that, it is good to have a permanent address and start settling in. My birthday and Mike's birthday were this week, so finding a home is a great birthday present!

It's reassuring to me to know that God "gets me"...even when I don't get myself. He is my place of safety, my refuge, my listening ear. He hears the junk, sorts through it and discovers what my heart is really saying. He thinks as much of me on the other side of my sorting through a myriad of emotions as He started out thinking. He sees my frail attempts and reminds me that His strength is made perfect in my weakness.

Home Sweet Home?'s found in Jesus...and curled up in a favorite chair with a great cup of coffee in a familiar setting:)

That's it for now...until next time...that's my take on it!

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Here Comes The Judge!

So many experiences...coming at me so's hard to share them all, let alone remember them!

Since I CAN remember yesterday (Miracle!) I will share about my experience judging a food contest:) Our family was invited to a District Cookout down at Granville yesterday for Emancipation day which commemorates the abolishment of slavery for Trinidad/Tobago. We knew there was going to be a food contest among the churches in attendance, what I didn't know was that one of the judges was unable to make it and when I got there I was asked to help judge the food. I can't tell you the amount of anxiety I felt over the responsibility of judging each churches food on presentation, originality, taste and organization! Oh my goodness! I have been here less than a month! I smiled and did my best. Foods on the menu? Goat, duck, chicken, crab dishes...of course Bus Up Shut and Roti, Chana, different sauces and desserts, hot sauces, dumplings etc. The only thing I can say other than I survived and enjoyed most everything I tasted, is that when I compared notes with the other judges, we all agreed on the first place winner! I did have a good-natured gal from one of the churches that didn't win, take my picture and said she was putting it on a "most wanted" poster and displaying it around the Island. I really want to be "making friends" right now!

As I write about this, I think of the scripture "Taste and See that the Lord is Good". May His Word always be a familiar taste, a good taste and always on the tip of my tongue...ready to speak to myself, my family and others!

We had a wonderful time in church this last Sunday with Pastor Vicram Harjaree, celebrating Emancipation Day with them. Everyone was dressed in fancy, bright colors celebrating FREEDOM from Slavery and FREEDOM in Christ! Children waving flags...dancing...singing. FUN! One comment grabbed my we were told to greet each other, Pastor said, greet each other..."Share Some Sweat" (In other words, HUG!) Sooooo, find a friend today and greet him/her and SHARE SOME SWEAT!

That's it for now...until next time...That's my Take On It!