Hi everyone!! What a crazy day it has been! I’ve been writing today in between various back-to-school appointments with my middle school daughter. You know the fun ones like getting her schedule, paying all kinds of fees, etc. Most importantly though, I get a chance to spend time with her and there aren’t too many school years left where I get to do that. I cherish this time.
The reason it has been crazy is that I spent a huge chunk of time writing about our trip to Scotland and the churches there only to not have a clear confirmation from God that He wants me to share it now. Does that make sense?!
Every time I go to write the conclusion, edit it, and polish it up with pictures, I have no peace about publishing it.
I have been mulling over it for the last 45 minutes trying to figure out if it’s from God or what. Seriously?! The more I thought about it, the more uncomfortable I felt. God finally put me out of my misery, and the Holy Spirit led me to read something I had written in my bible back in January 2017 from Jesus Calling by Sarah Young:
“When you seek my face and my will–searching for guidance–I may show you the next step on your journey without revealing the appointed time for you to take that step. I want you to trust me enough to cling to me and follow wherever I lead, whenever I choose. Your times are in My hands.”
Wow! God really spoke to my heart. The timing was all wrong in what I was writing–that’s why I didn’t have peace. No matter how many times I tried to fit that square peg into the round hole, it was not going to work!! I am so thankful that God is so persistent with me and doesn’t give up!!!
Who knows, maybe some day I’ll share with you what I wrote–on God’s timeline of course. 🙂
However, here are a few of the pictures from our trip to Scotland!!
All the glory to God,
Young, Sarah. Jesus Calling: Enjoying Peace in His Presence. Thomas Nelson Publishing. 2004. Print.
Good afternoon everyone! What a beautiful day! It has been a few weeks since I’ve posted, but WOW! God has been at work in me in a mighty, mighty way! The words He whispered to my heart, an October evening last year, brought my trust and obedience to Him to a whole new level. Definitely my faith in action, for the following scriptures:
“Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is–his good, pleasing, and perfect will.” Romans 12:2 (NIV)
“Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.” 2 Corinthians 4:16-17 (NIV)
Wednesday evening, October 24, 2018, I was sitting in my ladies bible study small group helping facilitate when God spoke these words to my heart, “You will be the next speaker at Divine Design.”
Divine Design is a Mother’s Day weekend get together that is put on each year by our women’s ministry team that includes a meal, guest speaker, raffles, pictures, and much more, to honor the women in our lives. It is a two day event, Friday evening and Saturday at noon. It is such a good time and amazing fellowship takes place.
After I heard the words God spoke to my heart, I felt them come alive and rise up in me as the Holy Spirit brought life to God’s will.
As the evening moved on, the seed that God planted grew and grew! I couldn’t wait to share the news with my husband when I got home!
My husband was in Memphis, TN for business, so I called him the minute I got home, “I have a very strong feeling that Kim (ladies ministry director) is going to ask me to be the next speaker for Divine Design. I’m telling you this now, so when she asks me in the future, you will remember that God laid this on my heart, first.”
Over the next few days–leading up to Sunday–Divine Design was very heavy on my heart. I thought about what I would say, my confidence, my speech, what I would wear, how I would get my make-up done, etc. All of it confidence building. All of it God.
Let me explain why. The one thing that I would never do on my own is public speaking. I enjoy being an introvert, being on the sidelines, and watching as others are in the spotlight.
But God calls us to do things that are way beyond our comfort zone and abilities. Why? Because that “forces” us to completely depend on Him and the Holy Spirit.
On Sunday morning, October 28th, our guest speaker was a Missionary family from Portugal that we help support and his message focused on our interruptibility for God’s plans in our lives. God was connecting the dots of my blog writing, with this message, and I felt the sudden urge to share this with Kim, our Pastor’s wife, after church.
“This is what I wrote about two blogs ago.”
She said, “I know. I read it this morning.”
We moved off to the side of the sanctuary and sat down. She prayed for me and said she wanted me to be the next speaker for Divine Design! Confirmation! Then I shared with her how God spoke to my heart, etc.
Yes, of course I will do it!!
From the moment God planted the seed about speaking, there was never a doubt in my mind about being obedient to Him. And again, that confidence comes from Him, not me, because He has been faithful throughout my life.
Fast forward several months. Over time, God had given me peace and some direction on the message I would be sharing Mother’s day weekend. In fact, by the time April rolled around, I had the whole outline of topics and the first five pages written, courtesy of the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Trust me, you know when your writing is Holy Spirit ordained–it is an almost effortless flowing of words that almost feel like an extension of your abilities.
Then nothing. Not one word.
When I tried to write it felt forced and I did not have peace with it. So, I did more of what I had been doing. Praying. Reading. Seeking. Worshipping. And most importantly trusting. I KNEW beyond any doubt that God brought me to this and He will provide in His timing and His way.
On Wednesday, May 1st, (I’m starting to see a pattern with Wednesday’s!!) I was driving to bible study and I was listening to a song that I’ve heard dozens of times. In fact, its one of the songs I chose to be a part of my message, “Everlasting God” by Lincoln Brewster.
“Strength will rise as we wait upon the Lord, wait upon the Lord”
“Our hope, our strong deliverer”
Those words jumped out at me! I finally understood that the very song that was being used for Divine Design is what God was trying to do through me. He was building my trust in Him. He is my Strength. My Deliverer. My Hope.
He would give me the words to finish my message in His perfect timing, which turned out to be the next afternoon, May 2nd. From mid afternoon to 9pm that night, I wrote with the guidance of the Holy Spirit and finished the last five pages of the message that God wanted me to share. It all came together perfectly, the way He allowed it–seven days before I was to share it with the ladies!!!
The weekend was awesome and I had a really good time fellowshipping and speaking with everyone. God showed up in a mighty and powerful way!
What I value most of this whole experience is how God has transformed my heart, mind, character, and relationship with Him. I am eternally grateful.
Recently I was reading a book titled, “Whisper: How to Hear the Voice Of God” by Mark Batterson and I love what he wrote about God given dreams:
“The goal of going after a God-given dream isn’t just accomplishing it. In fact, accomplishing the dream is of secondary importance. The primary goal is who you become in the process. Big dreams make big people because we have to trust a big God. Nothing keeps us on our knees like God-sized dreams. They force us to live in raw dependence upon God. Without Him, the dream cannot be realized. God sized dreams force us to lean in a little closer, and that’s when God has us right where He wants us.”
Writing, that is my God-sized dream. I am committed to keep doing, each day, what God places in front of me. I won’t be perfect, but I will be faithful! 🙂
And yeah, He has spoken some new dreams to my heart. And He has given some conformations to me. I will reveal all to you, in His time and His way. Stay tuned!!
All the glory to God!!!
My husband Steve and our two daughters
My dad and I
Batterson, Mark. “Whisper: How to Hear the Voice of God.” Multnomah publishing. 2017. Written.
God is first and foremost in my life.
my husband Steve, daughters Suzanne and Savannah,
my AMAZING family and friends,
the majestic beauty of the Pacific Northwest,
traveling and camping,
a GREAT cup of coffee with my morning devotionals,
and my Sumner Family Church family. :)