Dream Big! Have Faith! Work Hard!

In a child’s mind, he/she can become a super hero with just the donning of a cape and a mask.  Dreaming is natural to a child.  Nothing is out of reach.  Faith is unquestionable.  Believing in the supernatural, believing anything is possible is the way their mind processes.  If they can imagine it, it can happen!  Work is not seen as a hardship but rather an honor.  They want to ‘be’ like their heroes!  And their 1st heroes are their parents.  They will develop the attitude we portray to them about work.  They WORK hard in their play kitchens fixing dinner, or can break a sweat and then burst into tears if the lego tower they WORKed  so hard to construct is toppled over by a careless playmate.  

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Boundaries Bring Freedom

When God gives you three children that not only have three distinct personalities but actually three distinctly different cultures within themselves, the cookie cutter parenting is not going to work.  I think this is why I realized that ‘methods’ don’t work.  Each of our kids have unique ways of interpreting life and relating to the world around them. – different cultures.   We concluded that God designed each to be powerful and useful in His Kingdom.  How were we as parents to steward these ‘forces from God’, so that they could be creative and not destructive?  The picture we got was of a raging river.  As long as the river stays within its banks or boundaries, it can be productive, bring life, fun, power but if it overflows its’ boundaries it becomes destructive and harmful.  Here we were with three raging rivers to steward for the Kingdom of God, how was this to look?  What boundaries were for all and what boundaries were for each child?

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Parenting FROM a Place of Identity

God says in Proverbs 20:11, that even a small child is known by his actions . . .  And in Proverbs 23:7, as a man thinks, so is he.  I cannot find much distinction in the Bible between our actions and our identity.  Instead I read things like, out of my heart, my mouth speaks, that when people habitually lie they are called liars and so on.  The big Grace is that God can change our identity when we become His child, a new creation.  We heard a teaching from Ray Vander Laan how that in a practicing Jew mind, the schma ( . . . Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul and with all your strength. ) is not something they do but rather who they ARE.  It is their identity!  Maybe there really something to this parenting FROM a place of identity!

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Living Our Legacy – Learning to Parent from One of the Single Most Sad Verses in the Bible

King Hezekiah had just gotten a word from the Prophet that he would die soon.  He ‘turned his face to the wall and cried out to God for mercy.  He brought to God’s mind how he had lived righteously before the Lord.  Before the Prophet had left the courtyard, God told the Prophet to go back and tell the King that God would add 15 years of peace to his life.  But after that Hezekiah’s sons and daughters would be carried into captivity and become slaves.  At the hearing of these words, Hezikiah responded in a very religious way of, ‘so be the will of God.’  The Bible reveals that the whole while Hezekiah was thinking, “at least it won’t happen in my lifetime.”  To me 2 Kings 20:19 is the single most sad verse in the Bible.  Hezekiah had no thought of legacy, no true fatherly heart for his children, no lifestyle of discipleship; only religion and self-protection and comfort.

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On the Edge But Still Tying Up Loose Ends

We once had a friend who was a world champion in speedwings.  He would jump off cliffs with a kite strapped to his back!  Beautiful, amazing, scary!  I am sure that I am about to take that type of leap with God.  All around me I hear voices declaring the year of breakthrough!  Randy has an incredibly insightful word on the “Sons of Breakthrough”.  I am chomping at the bit.  Exactly what God says i am not to do.  He tells me in His Word, not to be like a donkey that has to be bridled!  But I know that He has had to bridle me.  HMMM – I am a donkey?

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Bringing the Waves of Hawaii Home to the Desert of Texas for 2017!

Kauai met Randy and me with 18-23 foot waves on the North Shore.  These waves boasted of unrelenting crashing of ominous power, beauty, and deafening rolls of thunder.  We learned to heed the local’s wisdom that ‘knew’ the ocean and its’ giant hands of the  plummeting anything in their grasp to the ocean bottom.  They were marvelously amazing and I wondered what God was saying to us through His creation.

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Same Song (Empty Arms), Second Verse (His Kindness Leads to Repentance)

DISCLAIMER:  This is ‘my’ testimony about the loss of ‘our’ baby and what God said to ‘me’.  I believe that God uses what happened to me as a clear picture of the importance of forgiveness and a clear conscious.  Please don’t read your or your friends situations into my events, just open your hearts to see Jesus amidst tragedy.  🙂

After the doctor performed a cleaning procedure on me, he entered my room and tried to explain what had happened to our baby.  Probably due to frustration at my blank expression to all his medical jargon, he stated, “It is as if something ate your baby.  The amniotic fluid is there, the placenta is there, but no baby.” (statement referred to in previous blog, “Empty Arms . . . “)  Although his words may seem harsh to you, I hid them in my heart and God used them for healing later.

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From Empty Arms to Making God Smile

Soon after Randy and I were married, I became pregnant.  Due to some wrong responses from us to some events at the church that we were on staff at the time, my baby died in the womb.  I began to miscarry.  The Drs. decided to do a DNC procedure to clean my womb.  After the procedure, the Dr. told me that the amniotic fluid and placenta was there, but no baby.  He said, “It’s like something ate your baby.”  (I’ll explain this comment in the next blog).  And he sent me home to heal, physically, emotionally and spiritually.

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Step Out of the Traffic

Here I was in Kauai, Hawaii, one of the most peaceful places on earth and there was traffic in my soul.  I tried to disguise my unrest, but of course it surfaced in full force.  I was sharp with my words, easily frustrated, trying to control the events of the world and so on.  I was mostly frustrated with myself because I was ruining Randy and my get away.  I couldn’t seem to shake my pitiful attitude.  Why, God?  What’s wrong with me. 

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The Language of Play

I love kids!!!  They are my tutors of how to live life in the Kingdom of God.  In Matthew 18:4, Jesus says, “Whoever becomes simple and elemental again, like this child, will rank high in God’s Kingdom.”  Kids keep my perspective right.  Being with kids, I caught on quick that all kids speak the same language – play.  Play is not only a shared activity but it is a literal way of communicating.  

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Randy, Boone, Bethany, Hannah, Josiah, Brandi and me – FAMILY!

My family!!  From the minute Randy and I married I prayed that God would use our family as a battle ax in His Kingdom against the gates of hell.  It’s humbling and exciting to see these young passionate people standing on our shoulders and going much further with Him.  Plus, they are ALOT of fun and keep us on our toes!

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Get Out of the Way

GET OUT OF THE WAY.  When our 3 kids were younger we took a trip to Waco to attend World Mandate, an intensely radical missions conference.  Josiah was 15, Bethany – 12 and Hannah – 9.  At the end of his talk, one speaker called for those that would volunteer to go to the hard places to stand.  With quick glances, as mothers do, I watched my kids.  They were sitting scattered throughout our group.  I saw Josiah stand firm without hesitation!  I captured sight of of Bethany boldly standing.  Then little Hannah climbed up into her chair so she too could be counted among the ones that would go.

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Helmets Are Always A Good Idea!

Take risks.  Live life, don’t let life live you.  These all sound so noble, but when you are so ‘anointed’ in the ability of goofiness, goofy things happen just by living life.  Two events of just ‘going for life’ landed me literally on my head.

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Missions – Prepare International

Life is definitely not boring, but can be a blur.  We want to take time to connect with Him every morning so that we can consciously see Him in every moment.  In our lifestyle, we often feel we have lived a whole year in just 2 short weeks.  It seems like yesterday and at the same time a lifetime, that we took the helm of PI.

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Gathering Stones – before the first step

I will be posting a series of blogs that I wrote this past 6 months. I am changing my blogsite to the PI site. This series is about TRANSITIONING. It is called Gathering Stones. I hope you enjoy and see Jesus through these blogs. This is the 1st of the series.

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Get Out Of The Way

When our 3 kids were younger we took a trip to Waco to attend World Mandate, an intensely radical missions conference. Josiah was 15, Bethany – 12 and Hannah – 9. At the end of his talk, one speaker called for those that would volunteer to go to the hard places to stand. With quick glances, as mothers do, I watched my kids.

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Ordinary Becomes Extraordinary

Randy and I lead Prepare International, a mission organization that now serves in 20 nations. But when people are around me they are amazed that God can work through such an ordinary person (or perhaps even viewed as sub-ordinary by some).

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We all matter

I speak with people everywhere with this simple message, “Don’t play it safe or live just for your own happiness. Live to touch your world.” The answer I so often hear and, the answer is “Who me? But I can’t…“ Here is what I’ve learned over 36 years of walking with the Lord.

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Restoring the work of a Blacksmith

It dawned on me the other day, that I have been leading this ministry into Europe (and now Africa and Latin America) for right at 20 years. As time progressed, the Lord has made our calling apparent.

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