Wednesday, August 17, 2011

If this doesn't make your day...

I don't know what will!

If Spencer and I are ever so blessed to have a sweet Asian daughter half as cute as this, I won't ever be able to stop smiling. Someday :)

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

An anchor to the soul

I've had Hebrews 6 in my head the past couple days about hope as an "anchor to the soul." I've been reminded several times in the past week that life here on this earth is not secure. People let you down, your plans fail. And there is absolutely no way to guarantee success, or a painless life. We are left to trust God, and this can be very scary.

In Hebrews 6 it's talking about the certainty of God's promises. That section starts off remembering God's promise to Abraham, that he would be fruitful and multiply through all the earth. As a "seal" to his promise, he made an oath, which the Bible says is final for confirmation." God wanted to "show the heirs of promise the unchangeable character of his purpose." How incredible is that statement? The unchangeable character of his purpose, his heart. Though our world is not secure, HE IS.

And because it is impossible for God to lie, we who have fled for refuge might have strong encouragement to hold fast to the hope set before us.
We have this as a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul...a hope that enters into(AF) the inner place behind the curtain, 20where Jesus has gone(AG) as a forerunner on our behalf....

I want to learn what it means to hold fast to the hope set before us. Because this week, I have not been doing that very well. And I want to not only hold fast to this hope externally, but in the deepest part of my heart as well. I believe that if, through the grace and strength of Christ alone, I learn to make this hope my anchor then it will in turn be reflected in my attitude and the way I respond to situations.

Lord, I praise you for this beautiful hope. Thank you that Jesus went behind the curtain for our behalf, that we are clean, and that we have hope through the resurrection and 2nd coming. I pray, Father, that you would teach me what it means to hold fast to this hope. Show me what it means to live with that hope as an anchor. I invite you into my heart to do your great work within me, and I pray that you would do the same within the global Church as well. I love you.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Food for the mind and soul.

Feed your soul with this Scripture from Lamentations 3:22-26:

The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases;
his mercies never come to an end;
23they are new every morning;
great is your faithfulness.
24 "The LORD is my portion," says my soul,
"therefore I will hope in him."

25The LORD is good to those who wait for him,
to the soul who seeks him.
26 It is good that one should wait quietly
for the salvation of the LORD.

Feed your mind today with this definition of a true woman:
A true woman is willing, serious, and determined to reflect the beauty and heart of Christ to her world. She seeks to live a God-centered life, trusting Him and saying "Yes, Lord!" She knows this is only possible by His grace, and seeks to do so in community. (

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Wedding Dress

I’m trying on wedding dresses on Monday, and I am very excited. I have one picked out, on sale, and the store has it in stock. All of this wedding dress talk has really got me thinking. I’ve always loved the song “Wedding Dress” by Derek Webb, and I encourage you to listen to it before continuing to read.

“I am a whore I do confess, I put You on just like a wedding dress and I run down the aisle, run down the aisle. I’m a prodigal with no way home, I put You on just like a ring of gold and I run down the aisle, run down the aisle, to You.”

As I sought the Lord at the conference this past week, He graciously brought all my cluttered thoughts into one broad theme, and that is my identity. I’ve been reading books and articles recently about Godly womanhood, and a burden has been growing in me to foster that Godliness both in myself and in other women.

So I get to thinking about a wedding dress. Our clothing, our uniform helps create our identity. If we work at McDonald’s, we’ll wear a hat with the big yellow arches. A doctor wears a lab coat. A mom might wear yoga pants and an adoption t-shirt (okay maybe not…just had to throw that in there) J But in any case, our clothing helps to define us, and gives a little glimpse of who we are and what we do. When you see a beaming woman in a gorgeous white gown, she looks like a princess, and you know that she is a bride. She is going to walk down the aisle to her husband. The white is a symbol of purity, something that has lost tremendous value in the past 50 years, and it makes my heart ache. Regardless, the wedding dress is the outward evidence of a bride.

While I absolutely cannot wait to find that perfect dress, I am far less concerned about that than what is on the inside. What is my inward evidence of being a bride-to-be. Any bride can put on a dress and walk down an aisle to be married. But when that ceremony is over, she takes that dress off and she is not only a woman but a wife. When we become Christians, we become a part of the Church, which is the Bride of Christ. In one of my workshops last week, they gave us 3 qualities of the Bride of Christ which should in turn be possessed by women of the Lord.

  1. Beautiful- think and act beautifully. This means grasping on to the identity which is found in Christ with both hands, believing it with your head and your heart.
  2. Confident- This attribute stems from the first one. Your confidence in your beauty as a Daughter of the King should in turn be reflected in your actions. When others see you, they should see something different about you- a peace and rest about who you are as a person, and a confidence in your ability to be used by the Lord.
  3. Unshakeable hope- oh how beautiful these words are. We possess an unshakeable, unwavering hope that cannot be taken from us. Let me repeat that. It CANNOT be taken from us. I cannot tell you how many times I have let that be snatched away from my hands. A negative comment, a frustrating number when I step on the scale, a doubting professor, a disappointment. We are faced with these things everyday. For that matter, my first look in the mirror in the morning can dictate whether or not I claim that hope for today. But- if we claim that beauty from Christ, and with confidence believe it regardless of what the day brings, we will have this unshakeable hope.

So on Monday, I’ll be whisked away into every girl’s dream. I’ll try on dress after dress, I might cry when I find the right one, and I’ll truly feel like a bride. But in my heart of hearts, I know that this dress is only temporary, only an outward fixture of that big day. In the end, I am a woman of the Lord, a Princess Warrior, a Daughter of the King, and I have a lifetime of marriage to look forward to when the make-up is taken off and the dress is gone. Just as we don't want to slip on our identity as "Christian" and slip it off again, I do not want to just slip on the wedding dress and call myself a bride. Our roles as Godly women go much deeper than this.

As I seek the Lord’s face for what this season holds for me as a bride-to-be, I’m asking him to mold me, and put me through His refining fire, that I might come out on the other end a beaming woman clothed in the purity of Christ. And I long for this for every woman who is sitting staring at their computer screen reading these words. Truly. I care for your heart, I long for women to embrace our place in this world, the identity that God has given us. Will you join me on this journey of seeking the Father’s heart in a world that calls for the opposite of a gentle and quiet spirit with inward beauty? I believe that He has so much for us.

"but let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God’s sight is very precious. 5For this is how the holy women who hoped in God used to adorn themselves."

1 Peter 3:4-5

"Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain,
but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised."

Proverbs 31:30

Making changes....

I spent the past 5 days at the National Student Conference in Evansville, IN.
I came back feeling so incredibly refreshed and very challenged all at the same time.
I spent hours in workshops, and then spent the afternoons journaling, writing poetry, and reading the Word. The Lord met with me. Encouraging, convicting, changing, growing me.
Because of this, I am so burdened to allow His hands to make changes.
Never do I remember longing so much to be molded by Him.
My heart is yearning to be the woman that He wants me to be, not the one that the world tells me to be.
I am asking Him to come and shape me into the daughter, sister, fiancee/wife, friend, student, worker, servant that reflects our Creator.

First up- I went through my blogs tonight. Kept the ones that the Lord is using to grow me, and deleted the ones that I just read for fun. Less time on the computer= more time in the Word.

Tomorrow- Update my bank account. I had done really well at logging everything I spent money on. But recently...well....I've just been a little busy. Spain, wedding planning and stuff, ya know :) But when I don't keep an eye on what I'm putting my money to, it's so easy to spend it on things that I don't need instead of putting it towards things that God needs me to put it to.

Little by little, change is coming as the Lord's gentle hand moves in me.

Friday, August 5, 2011

2 weeks.

2 weeks ago, he got down on his knee and slid a ring on my finger.

Ever since, life has been a whirlwind!

I have become the girl who catches herself staring at her hand, just to make sure the ring is still there, and to do a little dreaming about the big day.

I've become the girl who cries about whether or not to have a DJ.

I've become the girl who pulls out the post-it note pad from her purse to randomly jot down ideas for the wedding, or a task for the to-do list.

Oh yes, the wedding planning is in full speed!

But the beautiful thing about it, is that in 301 days, I will be a bride blessed beyond measure.

The Lord has been showing me so many things as I prepare my heart for this journey.
More blog posts to come :)