|Ok, so I'm fair warning you that this blog post will do just that...leave ya hangin'. I've had a desire in my heart for quite sometime now to pursue something in particular. That something will remain "secret" for now simply because I'm just not really ready to share it until I know it's something that the Lord has called me to pursue and that it's not just something crazy I've dreamed up in my head. Let's just say it would be a really BIG undertaking (no, I don't think it would require me to move...AGAIN!). But it would require me to do many things that I would have no clue how to do. That's a scary thought! :) Anyway, all that to say, this was part of Beth Moore's blog post from today and I wanted to share it. Whether this specific "secret" is or is not something that the Lord is calling me to pursue, I do know that I want to wholeheartedly fullfill whatever it is He's calling me to. I couldn't have read this on a more perfect day. God is so good, isn't He?!? Hope this encourages you like it did me! |
"Are we just snoozing our way through (purposeful) life and day dreaming about how we're going to chase down what Christ chased us down for - or are we going to wake up and actively pursue what God has created us for - even when the path gets rough? I ask the question because I've faced the dilemma. See if you can go here with me a minute: We get some vision from God and get pretty jazzed about it then, as God leads, we start taking steps that direction and suddenly the path gets hard. Or LONG. We wanted to leap there. Not crawl there. Somehow we weren't expecting it to be like this. We were thinking it was going to be fun. Always fulfilling. And, for crying out loud, not so dad-blasted hard and irritating. We didn't want to have to learn it or live it. We just wanted to do it. NOW. So we retreat and decide we dreamed it all up - just like Satan was hoping we would. We don't understand that the pressures we face getting to our places of full-throttle effectiveness in Christ are crucial for developing the muscle to sustain ministry there. He's developing the character the calling requires.
The Apostle Paul knew better than anybody what the path to Christ-ordained effectiveness required. In 1 Corinthians 16:8-9, he told of a "great and effectual door" that God had opened for him in Ephesus and in the same breath mentioned the great opposition he faced there. Let me echo here on this blog again and again: Satan will never oppose us more than when he thinks we're onto our callings. Bet on that. As L.B. Cowman said in Streams in the Desert, "Both in the physical realm and spiritual realm, great pressure means great power." (p.9)
Read these words from Paul with a fresh application to your significant life: "Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me...Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus." (Philippians 3:12-14)
Let nothing - no obstacle, opposition, pressure, PAST, or passage of time - stop you besides Christ Himself. And if HE does, stop immediately. It will be only for your good and your clarification. You will know the difference as you lie on your face before Him and ask Him. To double check that we ourselves have not inadvertently caused a delay, let's be sure and turn dramatically from pride and every hint of selfish ambition so that Christ can entrust us with power from on high...
"For the vision is yet for an appointed time, but at the end it shall speak, and not lie: though it tarry, wait for it; because it will surely come." Habakkuk 2:3
"Wake up, O sleeper, rise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you"! Eph. 5:14
Thursday, February 28, 2008
Sunday, February 24, 2008
|Again...two posts in one day. What's the world coming to?!? Not that I don't enjoy worshipping the Lord everyday, but today has been extra enjoyable. Do you ever just find it difficult to worship? It should be so easy after all that Christ has done for us. But to truly worship, I find that I have to move me out of the way and that's just honestly hard to do some days. We/I get way to wrapped up in self that our worship becomes more about us instead of the One Who created it, the One Whom our praise and worship is due. The past few weeks and months, there've been several situations in my own life and in the lives of dear friends where we've really just needed the constant reminder that God is in control in this crazy world we live in. Big storms or just a little "rock of the boat". Life altering decisions, little daily stresses. Sickness. We all face different things. The truth is, that as a Child of God, He is always on my side. I forget that so easily and when I forget that truth, I allow defeat to begin taking over the places in my life that His blood has already covered and conquered. As I sang this song this morning, I couldn't help but worship Him and praise Him for always being in control and for continually providing me with the salvation that I need from this world and from self. |
"God above all the world in motion. God above all my hopes and fears. And I don't care what the world throws at me now, I'm gonna be alright! Hear the sound of the generations. Making loud our freedom song. All in all that the world would know Your name, It's gonna be alright! 'Cause I know my God saved the day, And I know His word never fails, And I know my God made a way for me. Salvation is here."
May you be reminded as I have been today that God is still very much alive and in control, that He is ABOVE all things. That His Word NEVER fails and that always, always He provides us a way out of worldy "worries" so that we can worship Him. What and amazing God!
What a great weekend! As you've read from a previous post, my best friend Abby, her husband Joe, and their sweet Baby Elizabeth were in town this past week. We had a "Post Baby Shower" for Abigail and Elizabeth on Saturday since Abby was on bedrest the latter part of her pregnancy and unable to travel home to GA for us to throw her one before Baby Elizabeth arrived. My first meeting with "Little Lizzy" was priceless and I fell in love with her just as I knew I would. I was fortunate enough to take Wednesday off this past week to devote to spending some good quality time with Abby and Elizabeth. Abby and I had lunch at Olive Garden, just the two of us, and then how could we pass up some shopping time at the good 'ole Mall of GA before heading to Abby's moms to see the baby. Abby and I shop very well together since we both really just don't LOVE shopping....we tolerate it. It's still very hard for me to believe that she's a Mom...but I know one thing...she's terrific at it! I love them so much! Enjoy these pictures from the shower.
Friday, February 22, 2008
|Down two more pounds this week, bringing my total to 66.2! Less than 9 pounds to go before reaching my second goal of 75 pounds! The past few weeks I've felt a little "unfocused" but I'm ready to get back on track this weekend. Bring it on baby!|
Wednesday, February 20, 2008
|I'm so excited!! I have been waiting for months for this day to arrive! I took the day off work because my dear, best friend Abby is in town this week and in a few hours I get to go and spend the whole afternoon with her! Why is this such a special occasion, you ask? Because I've not seen Abby since September, when I visited with her in Raleigh, NC, after she was placed on bed rest. She and her sweet husband, Joe, welcomed Baby Elizabeth into the world at the beginning of December. This is Elizabeth's first visit to GA and also her first meeting with her Aunt Meredith. Oh, what fun we are gonna have!!! Joe is a Chic-Fil-A Operator and his work brought him here to GA this week. I was very mad at Joe when I learned he would be moving my best friend a LONG way away, but at least he brings her back for occasions such as these and at least I get FREE Chic-Fil-A when I go to Raleigh! :) I'll post an update and hopefully some pictures of our day together later. Have a wonderful Wednesday! I'm gonna go spend some time with Jesus.|
Monday, February 18, 2008
|...let's give the boys a hand! Two posts in one day. New record for me. After having several conversations with some of my good guy friends this weekend, I was reminded of how blessed I am to have Godly guys in my life. This may sound a little weird or random, but I truly am thankful for this. My friend Kevin Cabe, who is now serving as a Student Pastor in Knoxville, had the opportunity to preach at his church on Sunday morning. I had the opportunity to hear about his message firsthand as he bounced some things off of me on Saturday night, wanting to know my opinion on his message that he was preparing. (you all know how much my opinion matters!) He had a solid message about sharing Christ with others, that, after hearing a report, the Lord used to touch a lot of people on Sunday. I also had some good conversations this weekend w/ my friend Chad Bugg who lives out his faith each day as a teacher. He was home for the weekend and we were able to fellowship at church and lunch on Sunday. It's crazy to hear about the things the Lord has taught him over the past few months and year and to this day. The Lord has used him a lot lately to really open my eyes to so many things in the Word that I never really thought about before. Those are just two incidents from this weekend. If I had a day or two to just sit here and list off all the godly guys in my life, that still probably wouldn't be enough time! I think of all of the pastors, student pastors, musicians, dear friends, friends who pick on me A LOT...I'm amazed that the Lord has chosen to place them in MY life. Not to mention that I've been allowed to serve alongside some of these great leaders on staff. (i.e., JWisener, Jarrod Roberts, Hector Cervantes). Putting those three names together spells something other than godly, but that would mess up my post. :) There are TONS of godly girls in my life too, who I'm equally thankful for. But it just feels good to know that some of the world's greatest, godliest, male leaders, are friends with me and graciously teach me so much about my wonderful Savior. Thanks, fellas. You all know who you are. (these blogs won't happen very often...savor the moment)|
|I'm not much on complaining. Frankly, it just makes me feel worse. But I feel the need to vent a little. I'm sick...again! I thought this was taken care of last week after a round of antibiotics. (the first ones I've taken in my whole adult life - yes, I'm generally very healthy - this is why i'm so frustrated.) It all started again on Saturday when my nose welcomed a lovely downpour of the nasty stuff. Then yesterday afternoon I began running a fever. So, there I layed for about an hour, piled under a mountain of blankets awaiting my fever to break, only to be throwing them off of myself a little while later while pouring sweat. Other things I hate about being sick...|
1. When you're sick at the same time everyone else is sick, there's no one around to have sympathy on you. (feel sorry for me yet?!?)
2. Food just doesn't taste good...or just doesn't taste. I mean, come on! I just got a whole box of Valentine's candy.
3. I have no energy, which means I don't feel like doing anything, especially exercising. I just got a whole box of Valentine's candy. No good!
4. I still have to go to work and take care of SICK patients. Who cares if I'm sick...I'm still expected to sympatize with them. (I really do love my job!)
5. It begins to look like you have "nose dandruff" when you rub all the skin off your nose from blowing it so much. Quite attractive.
Ok, I thought complaining about it would make me feel worse, but I actually feel a little better. I'll stop while I'm ahead. :) Thanks for letting me vent. Stay healthy everyone!!
Thursday, February 14, 2008
Happy Day 'O Love, People! I may be a single girl, but I by no means felt "unloved" on this Valentine's Day. :) The fun began when I received the sweetest Valentine from little Luke at work today. My brother-in-law delivered a box of chocolates, a balloon and the sweetest card addressed to "Aunt Meredith". Yes...I almost cried. I was able to leave work a little early today because we weren't very busy, so I went to spend most of the afternoon w/ my precious "Valentine". The pictures below are of him opening his gift from me. So much fun!! I also received a 1/2 dozen red roses from my Daddy (they are gorgeous!) and a bag of goods from my Mom (a book by my favorite author, some more chocolate, and a gift card to one of my favorite stores.) I definitely racked up today. I wasn't reminded of the fact that I'm single today, but instead reminded that I'm surrounded by people who love me so much! I needed it to be that kind of day! God is good and so is His love towards me! Look at that grin!
Sunday, February 10, 2008
|Do you ever have one of those weeks where you're just kinda glad it's over and really looking forward to a new one starting?? That's how I feel today. Not that all things were bad this past week, in fact, some great things happened. I lost 1.4 more pounds this week, bringing my total to 64.2. I had some really sweet patients at work this week, got to spend some fun time w/ my Mom and her sisters last night as we went and saw a Christian comedian, Chonda Peirce, that was in town. (I thought it was going to be really cheesy, but she was actually pretty hilarious!) So, it was definitely not a horrible week by any stretch of the imagination. The things that happened this past week that are making me look forward to a new week: sickness! My whole family has been sick this week, including my sister, brother-in-law, and sweet baby Luke. I have had to go almost 2 weeks without seeing that baby. I'm learning how addicts feel when they are forced to go through withdrawal. It's HORRIBLE!! Thankfully we all seem to be on the "up and up" now! And on top of not feeling well, it's definitely been one of those weeks where I have truly had to work on "taking thoughts captive and unveiling the Truth in my life!" (hence the blog!) The Lord has been showing me so many incredible things about Himself over the past couple months and satan has been working overtime in my mind this week - trying to feed me lies about myself and about my Creator. I've felt drained physically from being sick, but I'm also drained emotionally and spiritually from doing some serious "fighting" this week. However, I must say admist the madness, I truly have learned to embrace and appreciate these times because the Truth that He does reveal when I take my thoughts captive and make them obedient to His words are priceless! What a mighty Warrior we serve! Have a WONDERFUL week! :)|
Tuesday, February 5, 2008
|I read this passage of scripture last week and it's been one of those verses that's just kept coming back to mind almost everyday since I read it. "Only let us live up to what we have already attained." (Philippians 3:16) Paul wrote these words right after he basically said, "ya know, I realize that there's a whole lot about the Lord and His ways that I still don't know and don't get. But those things that I do know, that He's taught me and that I have taken hold of...I'm gonna live those out for His glory." I've been thinking on things this week that I know to be true about my Savior, things that I know I should live out in obedience to Him each day. I will never know it all, just like none of us ever will. But by His grace, He has taught me and teaches me so much about Himself every day. I attain little bits of knowledge on my journey with Him each day and it's my responsibility to be living up to those things and "working them out" in my life each day. So, to answer my question, no, I haven't been living up to the things I have already attained but my goal for today and tomorrow and the next day is to strive for that. "Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me." (Philippians 3:12)|
Sunday, February 3, 2008
Last night was our monthly "sisterhood" gathering - we definitely got our game on! If you haven't had a game night with friends lately, now's the time. My stomach muscles are so sore today from all the laughing we did last night. We invited the boys to join us last night. Everyone is married except for myself and Karla. However, Karla and Justin have been dating for 6 years, so we are all expecting a diamond within the near future for her. And as for myself, I brought along the hopes of a boyfriend! :) The girls killed the guys in "Mad Gab" but unfortunately we did get beat in "Battle of the Sexes". I wish I had a list of the MANY hilarious things said throughout our evening together, but one of my favorites came from Eric, when the guys were asked the question, "What national agency supports breastfeeding?". His answer was "Feed the Hungry". Wow! What a fun night! The Lovely Ladies
Justin and Karla
Justin and Karla
Courtney and Nick (Thanks y'all for letting us use your home last night!)