Friday, January 17, 2014

What it is

The house is quiet on this early Friday morning.  The kids are still in bed due to no school, my husband is traveling for a long weekend with work and I just completed an excellent workout.  BUT, now I am nestled on my lounge couch and feel cozy.  I really enjoy mornings like this...  it allows space for the Lord to create His day in me.  It is His day, not mine...  I keep saying this to myself, surrendering my own will continually...  until they align, my agenda and the Lord's.  I enjoy this process...  it is a reminder that even though I am His daughter, saved for eternity... I am still a sinner and have so much to learn, to give, to offer, to join in on, to rest upon, to love, to laugh, to enjoy, to serve, to repent... and the list goes on.

BUT, I cannot wait to see what it is today...  what it is that He will have me be flexible with, what is it that He will have me stand firm on... what is it today that will make today unique from yesterday and tomorrow!  Not sure, but there will be something!

If anyone is out there, I pray you find your day expectant of what it is today that you will enter into that will call it unique!  I want to be open to the Lord doing something new!  I think this is a good beginning.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Regaining my First Love!

Good morning!  Here is the most recent family photo we have currently... we aren't the best at capturing each moment like I was in Africa...  I think maybe I should try to capture more memories so I don't forget... as I am prone to do.

Malachi 3:16 talks about a remnant of God's people writing a "scroll of remembrance" of what God had done...  I believe it is because we are prone to forget.  Forget the good, forget the Lord's hand and how many times he has given...  

I also just did a woman's retreat for a church here in Cincinnati and the whole theme was the idea of remembering where we have come from, not only spiritually, but within our own family trees.  Then taking a look at our lives currently and then projecting forward on purpose to live on purpose and to love on purpose and to repent on purpose...  it got me very excited for the 2014 year...

Since I am prone to forget, I want to share with this blog what my 2014 resolutions are... because the more I write them down, the more I will not forget.  I have been trying to write them down every other day, if not every day.  So far, it has been such a great reminder that God is faithful and I am HIS!

1. Be open to the Lord doing something new; pursue ministry with confidence
2. Speak less, listen more, pray more
3. Live with conviction; in honesty and people pleasing
4. Find God (this is really first); Regain my first love through repentance and faith

There you have it!  that last one gets me soooo excited for this next year!  I want to Find God not for any reason except I truly LOVE Him!!  

Okay, I actually have 3 other ones, but they are more "fleshly ones" that will impact all of me, but not needing to share here...  think money, exercise, etc... :)

Okay, well have a great day Finding your First Love and I will have a great day finding mine!

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Expressions of Relationship

Good morning,

So, I was talking with a friend recently about spending time with God.  I remember saying that He will provide what you need when you need it.  He sees the "bigger picture" and allows seasons to come and go when "time" with Him is evident.

I think I was wrong on many levels with this... first I looked at spending time with God as something that helps us grow and that he doesn't always use that "time" to grow us...  Truth is, spending time with Him doesn't help us grow at all.  Only the Holy Spirit can do that.

BUT, what I am learning is that prayer, "time" in the Bible, worship in its various forms is an expression of His grace that He has already given us.  The idea that He - GOD of the universe, the Alpha and Omega, the Omniscient, let me go on... - has given us outlets to be with Him.  To go deeper into our relationship (our restored relationship by the way thanks to Him)!  If I soak that in, I am overwhelmed by this opportunity.

It's as if someone just told me I could eat a chocolate lava cake everyday with my best friend with only getting slimmer each time I partake in this practice (I know, totally lame analogy, but I was putting into my worldly, fleshly terms).  :)

I found the following paragraph in this Bible Study I am doing right now:
" In a sense, all the disciplines are forms of worship - ways to acknowledge that we serve a great God, to recognize God's "worth-ship". and to draw closer to Him.  They get us out of our own way so we can see and appreciate God for who He is.  By engaging in these practices, we declare that God is God and we aren't. "
I am brought back to the earlier conversation with my friend.  We don't have to spend time with God, but man, we are going to spend eternity with Him... I cannot imagine that being fun if I didn't think it would be fun here, right??

I hope today, whoever is out there or whoever is not out there, I hope you find ways to just kind of waste time with God!  Have fun!

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Out of Practice

It is weird to find that my thoughts seem clear in my mind yet while trying to put "pen to paper" they are sounding all jumbled...

I do remember the days in which my typing came freely and very fluidly...  I guess you really can get out of practice with something.  It is such a bummer to me that they older I get the more quickly I can become out of practice with something...

1.  Journaling to the Lord
2. Spending set aside time with the Lord
3. Eating healthy...  not that it ever was a practice, but man I can be in a good stride and one day will feel as if I have to start all over with healthy choices
4. Reading for the sake of learning and growing
5. purposefully serving my husband 
6. Surprising my kids with things they love for no reason
7. Debriefing a group of people about what God is doing in them and through them
8. having insignificant talk with people, just for the sake of getting to know them and building a relationship
9.  okay, you get the idea, I can go on and on...

Today, I rely on you Lord...  the author and perfecter of my faith!  Thank you for never being out of practice with anything!

Monday, December 9, 2013

Square Peg in a Round Hole

I have felt like a square peg in a round hole, for years now, to be honest!  Let me give you a bigger picture:

I am a square peg: Circumstances and life choices around me feel, a round hole.  Does that help? :)

I am just not in the same frame of mind or the same opinion of others that seem to be prevalent, so when I am choosing to not move or make a different choice, it can appear that I am going against the grain because the wind is butting up against me, when in reality I am just choosing to "be still" in a life that is not still.  I am not saying that life is wrong, but I do think that I am wrong when I am not being obedient by being still, when I am asked to do so....  and then the rub hits me again.  People get confused, people think I am "just being Corrie again"...  needing to be "different"!

I don't necessarily wake up and think "How can I be different today and cause others to feel weird?"  I promise you, I do not...  but I have given that impression OR I think I have given that impression.  That second statement is probably even more accurate than the first!

But, I have tried being round in a round hole and it has caused a discontent in me...  an ugly one that is blame oriented or defensive or feeing the need to justify.  I want this no more!

This past weekend was a distant feeling.  Actually, the whole weekend I was feeling distant.  Distant from my circumstances, distant from my family and distant in my energy.

I also think the Lord showed me some things as I went to him on Saturday night.  This is what I think He was saying:

The sin you see in your life Corrie, was there from the beginning, it is just your current circumstances that are bringing it out (which leaves no room for blame on others)
You have come to a place in your walk where you can turn around and see that you have people-pleased many times and it has created in you a bit of inauthenticity as you continue to live out of other's expectations and standards (which leaves no room for defensiveness)
You are feeling down because you have lost your first Love and you must get it back! (which leaves no room for idolatry)
BUT, thankfully i wasn't left there feeling ughhh... hopeless!

I was so gently reminded to persevere with others who have persevered (can anyone say they have yet to persevere through something???).  I was reminded that I am Christ's and in Him my identity is intact and that in Him I am to live freely which will lead to abundance, which leads to glory to God!

SO, I want to reclaim my life back as a square peg.  It isn't wrong to be a round hole and it isn't wrong to be a square peg... and it is not wrong to be a square peg in a round life BUT, what is wrong is that when God asks me to be true to the squareness, I don't do it...

This is what I am desiring to change.  When asked of it, I am a square peg, but for the rest of the time, I don't mind trying to be round... :)  as long as the Lord continues to give me the discernment of each moment!

Thank you Lord for your discernment and your insight and Truth!  I don't want to be discontent!  I am thankful you are both round and square!

Saturday, February 25, 2012

the typical normal

Hey world!

Feeling mellow today as I am just living this morning in "normal" mode. Went to the grocery store, picked up my daughter from her sleepover, made banana bread for my new neighbor and hanging out with my three children while my husband is at a conference...

Who would have thought that I would have a typical morning and thoroughly enjoy it.

Being a missionary in the USA is so different, but I know I have a ton to learn about it!

Friday, February 10, 2012

uncovered a different life lived

Hard to believe that one year ago, John and I knew we were leaving Jos, Nigeria Africa and started the process of packing up our life once again. Gosh, we were so tired...

Kenny, I loved him so much. He just became reunited with his mother.

But, months later, this now feels like home, Cincinnati, Ohio USA and the process of settling in is over and we are not tired (okay, well maybe on some days). Seeing the days and weeks behind us, I get so nervous that my memories will leave me of the days lived internationally.

Some dear friends that we worked with and rented our home from...

Friendships made, children loved on and a part of the family, ministry moving forward, characters being developed within each of us and the Lord showing me daily a bigger picture of who He is and how He provides for those He loves.

The village where we would go weekly and daily to see friends.

My prayer?- that I will continue to see who He is from another angle, another life being lived. Characters still being formed from under a sphere of convenience. His provisions showing themselves in different ways. I think I just need to open my eyes with a small tilt and see a more intentional way of living.

Where I bought my meat in Jos... over the counter service, wouldn't you say?

Truth is - ministry is here and it still needs to be moving forward. Friendships are forming with those who have no knowledge of Christ (a thought I cannot imagine) and children still need to be loved on and encouraged to believe the best in themselves as they start to really see how God sees them. Lies need to be removed and replaced with truth!

I can live this life and this is the one chosen for me. I can live it knowing my thoughts will become more vague of the past but my thoughts will become more clear of God. My eyesight at a tilt will become the eyesight of my daily. I can move forward today knowing this is the day the Lord has made!