Tuesday, October 29, 2013

"Surrender: How to Experience Peace" - CedarCreek Church service recap

When the current series "How to Get Through What You Are Going Through" was first announced at church over a month ago, I clearly remember thinking that it all sounded good for someone else and that I hoped the message touched many hearts.  I had no idea that the series was going to be directed at me.
You see, at the time the series was announced - I was good.  Really good.  I was engaged to be married to the man I though God placed in my life as an answer to my prayers.  I was just sure this was “the one.”  He looked and walked and talked and smelled just like the man I had been praying for.  I just knew he was my future husband the first moment I laid my eyes on him. Right before this new series began, he broke the engagement and I was heartbroken, confused, mad, sad, angry, struggling, and not at peace anymore.      
This past weeks' service was titled "Surrender: How to Experience Peace" and it really hit home with me like I never saw coming!  I thought I was coping well, but I have not really experienced peace with my broken engagement yet.  Peace may come today, and it may not come for months, or years, but I do know that God is working on me and bringing me closer to peace every day.  I have no doubt that I will get through what I am going through and am growing closer to God in this process.  I have questions that there are no answers to and desires (being married) that are not going to be.   In the accompanying Bible study yesterday, the speaker's words were quoted: “I need to bury that desire.  I will trust that what you have is better than what I have planned.”   These words were like honey (Proverbs 16:24)! 
Today, I took special care of myself which is something that I tend to let slip when I am feeling blue.  I took my time with my hair and makeup, put on my new skinny jeans, and wore a purple sweater with a cowl neck that always gets me compliments. (It’s a weird color with my blonde hair, but somehow it works for me.)  I went to my Bible study this afternoon and two of the ladies commented on my hair and how good I looked in the sweater.  I told them that this Saturday was supposed to be my wedding day and I was feeling sad so decided to get myself all duded-up and was going to “fake it till I make it.”  I chose to look my best today whether I felt like my best or not.
I have been productive these past several weeks and have been working out a lot and eating well to feel as good physically as I can.  I am having a hard time sleeping, but that will come in time.  I have been loving like crazy lately: serving at Vision Kitchen, loving-up extra on my kids, sending out my Fabulous Conference postcards to my girlfriends, and things like that expressing my love. 
So today, I open the accompanying Bible study and was so sweetly reminded, “But remember, it’s not the end of the story.”  WOW!!!!  How true that is!  My hope comes from The Prince of Peace who will guide me to my next destination.  I will not let fear outweigh my hope for a new path.  This path (marriage) was not meant to be, but I trust that wherever God is taking me is greater than any place I could possibly imagine!
I have a beautiful purple dress with a cowl neck hanging in my closet that will not be worn this Saturday.  I searched high and low to find this dress because I knew, like my sweater, it would make me look my best on my special day.  That dress may never be worn, or a wedding dress of any sort for me, and that is something that I have accepted.  I am clothed in the Righteousness of Christ, and for that alone – I am blessed!
May the love of Jesus touch each of your lives - and bring you peace!


Thursday, April 11, 2013

1-on-1 kid time (a single mom issue)

They are lots of yucky things about being divorced, and getting 1-on-1 kid time is definitely one of them that many people do not realize.  I either have BOTH kids, or NO kids.

I am very guilty of multitasking.  I try to do too many things at once and feel like I have to fit tons of tasks and to-dos in aboutthismuchtime which has robbed my kids of 1-on-1 time with me which they both actually enjoy.  Shame on me!  I used to allow those precious little slivers of 1-on-1 time go by.  Not anymore, and you should see how messy my house is to prove it!   
1-on-1 time is so critical because it really allows us moms to tap into our kids' heads and find out what is going on.  These middle school years are tough – no doubt about it!  I want and need to be their sounding board to comfort them, and reassure them, and give them Godly guidance the best that I can.  I never want them to feel like I don’t have time for them.  The house can wait.  The text from a friend can wait.  My kids are growing up way too fast and they can't wait!    
My son’s Love Language is “Quality Time” in a big way!  My daughter is a bit of a mystery as I find her to be all FIVE of the Love Languages.  Whew!  She sure keeps me guessing! 
Here are some things that I’ve been doing for quality 1-on-1 time which may seem obvious, but to me have become very beneficial:
My son – He’s a guy, so prefers shoulder-to-shoulder 1-on-1 time and not so much deep heartfelt conversations while looking at each other.  He opens up so much more when he is not looking at me, but rather while “doing stuff together” like guys do.     
·         Running together (when his buddies are not on XBOX Live, that is)     
·         Sitting and watching Sports Center or any sports on TV.  He really likes for me to sit with him.
·         Cleaning his room together (Yes, he is 13 and likes an orderly bedroom which I realize is unusual.  He is wound a little tight like me in some areas.  Poor kid! J)
·         Looking at Alabama football merchandise online - Roll Tide!
·         Staying and watching his sports practices
·         Being at every single sporting event that he participates in.  If I need to miss one, I try to tell him a few weeks in advance, like when his schedule first comes out, so that he is prepared.  He ALWAYS looks for me in the stands/bleachers.  My presence is very important to him.    
·         Watching him play XBOX.  He likes me to sit on his bed and watch him play.  We don’t even talk.  I’m just there.
·         Playing basketball with him in our dining room or backyard

My daughter – She is a girly girl who loves it all!  She likes for me to buy her things, spend time with her, leave her love notes, do nice things for her (like clean her room), and give her lots and lots of hugs and kisses!  One great thing about my daughter is that she is very clear about what she needs from me and will express it clearly.  Some of the ways we spend 1-on-1 time together are free, and some cost me a little money.  She really is an easy girl to please. 
·         Take her shopping (even grocery shopping which she loves)
·         Bike ride - which is her favorite summertime activity
·         Clean her room together (More like I clean while she sits on her bed and talks to me and watches me do all the work!)
·         Share a salad or dinner at a nice restaurant with white cloth napkins (She has great taste!)
·         Learn dance moves together from YouTube (like the “Tush Push”)
·         Watch her sing and dance and put on little shows for me
·         Watch her swim.  Just sit and watch her. 
·         Play SkipBo or any sort of card or board game
·         Cook together
·         Look at Pinterest together on the couch
·         Watch Chick flicks together (That’s my girl!)
Single moms out there -Please do not get caught-up in doing things that years from now will never matter like obsessing about your house or appearance.  Another thing I see so much of that breaks my heart is when moms are with their kids, but are texting away on their phone or playing on Facebook when they could be playing with their sweet kids.  I’m not saying you should’t do these things, but just be aware that your kids want to see YOU and not the back of your head while you are doing something else.  Focused attention is critical for communication.

I’m done now.  Go and have some fun and PLAY WITH YOUR KIDS!!! xo

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Really, nothing is wrong

So then why does that make me feel uneasy?

Does something ALWAYS have to be wrong?

I recently re-joined a new LifeGroup (a.k.a. Bible Study) with some absolutely amazing women.  After our study was over yesterday, we were all supposed to submit prayer requests. I sat there dumbly because I really had nothing heavy on my heart that I felt needed prayer.  Along the same line, two weeks ago our church service was about worry and anxiety.  Again, I really didn't feel it spoke to me.  I am not worried about anything right now.  No anxiety with this girl. Nada.

Right now, that is.

I feel like I am in a very sweet spot in life right now.  My heart is joyful and flowing in the Spirit.  I feel safe and secure and loved in the sweet arms of Jesus.  I am in complete surrender to His plan for every area of my life.  I feel good.  No worries no hurries no hate no drama no nothing.  Just all good stuff!

So is that all bad?

Oh, dear friends, I've had my bouts of worry and anxiety and drama and hate.  It has kept me awake many nights and robbed me of joy many days.  But not right now.  Now it's all good!

It really backed me up yesterday when I thought about it.  I started to wonder what was glaringly sideways and wrong in my life that I was missing that I needed prayer about.  But - really, nothing is wrong.   

I'm just going to go with it and enjoy it and remain here because I really like it here!

I hope you are there too right now because it's such a cool feeling!

"Be happy, and a reason will come along." (unknown)


Friday, March 1, 2013

Running is so pretty – take boob sweat, for example

Runner girls, you know you know.  J

Or how about when Aunt Flo decides to join you for a run?  Ugh!!
And for my cold weather runner friends, the ever-so-lovely snoticles.
Pit stops wherever whenever. (I always carry toilet paper in my waist pouch for such occasions.)

Chafing under the boobies (I love you, Body Glide!)
And the callouses and blisters on your feet.
I have never lost a toenail, but it’s very common.  Gross.
Passing gas.  Oops!  Excuse me!

Running isn’t always so pretty, but there are definitely some VERY pretty benefits of running like:
Tight, narrower hips
Strong, shapely legs
A healthy heart
Clear skin with pink cheeks

Mental therapy as your mind totally escapes

Prayer time
Accomplishing a goal

I find it amusing when I tell people that I run.
Other runners will ask what shoes I wear, what races I am registered for, or PR (personal record) stuff.  There is an instant camaraderie amongst runners whether they are a 5 or 15 minute mile runner.  (I’m a 10:20 runner consistently, so not very fast but I do it anyways.)  Runners can talk and talk and talk about running.
I love the reaction of non-runners when I tell them that I run. They usually go into a diatribe about their bad knees.  Bad knees seem to be a common ailment amongst non-runners.  Occasionally they just plain state that they hate running, but it’s usually something about their knees.
Whether you run or not, I hope you are doing something healthy for your body and your heart.  It’s important to move your body in whatever way you like – just do something!  If you want to try running, get yourself a good, sturdy bra to prevent injuries, some decent shoes to prevent injuries, and try a plan like the Couch to 5k plan or look into Jeff Galloway     
Bring on the boob sweat!


Thursday, February 21, 2013

Pretty panties

In the bottom drawer of my dresser is a nice collection of pretty panties with the tags still on them that I have never worn.  In my top dresser drawer are the ho-hum everyday panties that I wear on a daily basis.

What in the world am I saving all of these pretty panties for?  I probably have 20 pairs of brand new pretty panties in there, and I wear boring panties every single day!    

Because I WAS saving them for a special occasion.  Marriage.
It appears that is not going to happen for me, so I have decided to reward my weight loss milestones with new pretty panties.  Quite honestly, I would rather be slim, trim, and single in pretty panties than being married anyways.  Yes – I am going through one of my “man hater” stages.  Don’t worry though, it will pass.  I’m a lover to my very core.  Just a stage, friends.   
I have lost eight pounds since the first of the year.  I started out on fire, but my weight loss has slowed down with the winter blahs, changing my workout to include weight lifting, and a sick family (including myself for the past three days).  Currently, I am teetering on one of those scale numbers that end in a zero.  There is something so magical about dropping down below that mark.  When I do – I am breaking out a pair of those new pretty panties or two, then again in five more pounds, then again the next five, and then the last five I get the whole drawer full and will throw out my top drawer of ho-hum panties and start collecting something new.  Not panties though.
It’s like the good dining room dishes.  What are we saving them for!?  Isn’t everyday a good enough reason to celebrate and break out the good dishes?
Enough ho-hum panties for this girl!  It’s time to break out the pretty panties!
YOLO!! (you only live once)

Monday, February 11, 2013

This little light of mine, I'm gonna let it shine!

Around the first of the year I read a really cool post that included things to start doing in the New Year which included lighting a candle when we do our devotions to remind ourselves that we are the light of the world.  Lighting a candle has been a very nice addition to my daily morning quiet time with the Lord.  I will add the link to that cool post when I figure out where I found it!  Do you ever do that - read something that you want to go back and re-read and forget where you found it in the first place?

This morning, as I was reading my daily devotional in "Jesus Calling" from my sweet friend Kim from At Home With Kim, when I got to the sentence that read, "See times of darkness as opportunities for My Light to shine in transcendent splendor." - my glass votive shattered right there in front of me on my kitchen counter top.  Can you believe that?  The glass shattered, but the light kept on shining!  (The dovotional is written as if Jesus is talking to us directly.) 

"The Word gave life to everything that was created,
and his life brought light to everyone.
The light shines in darkness,
and the darkness can never extinguish it."
John 1: 4-5
So as it is with my life.  Sometimes circumstances around me will shatter and break, but the light of Jesus shines in "transcendent splendor" at all times and the "darkness can never extinguish it."    
Quite a lesson for this girl on a Monday morning!  
So, now I am singing my favorite church song which was probably the first song that I learned at Sunday School at the Baptist church, where my brother used to sit behind me and tie me to the chair with the bow on the back of my dress.  Everybody sing with me now.....
This little light of mine - I'm gonna let it shine.  This little light of mine - I'm gonna let it shine.  This little light of mine - I'm gonna let it shine, let it shine, let it shine, let it shine!

Friday, February 1, 2013

Be REAL to be REALLY loved

On the outside, I look like a good Jesus Girl (or at least I think I do).  On the inside, sometimes there is a different girl afraid that she will not be loved “if they knew the truth.”  I’m not talking all the time, but sometimes when I am struggling with sin.  Yes, sin.  We all sin. I know it’s a dirty word.

A few months ago, I confided in a Christian girlfriend about a sin that I was struggling with.  Keeping it inside made me feel miserable and alone, but I was too ashamed to tell anyone in fear of being unloved.    You know what she said after I told her about this struggle?  “Jenni, I struggled with that too.  I know how you feel.”  It was like she took a ton of bricks off my shoulders.  I thought I was the only bad Jesus girl.  Jesus girls want to say the right Jesus things and do the right Jesus things and wear the right Jesus things and listen to the right Jesus music and project the perfect Jesus image.  But sin creeps in and we freak out and try to hide it because we are Jesus girls.  We are not supposed to sin.
Who doesn’t love a good Jesus girl? But will they love a bad Jesus girl (past or present)?
I know that by confessing my sins to God I will be forgiven.  But, there is incredible power in confession to a fellow Christian.  What I thought would make her think less of me actually brought us closer together.  I’m not proud that we both shared the same sin, but it felt so good to be real.  In being real, our bond strengthened. 
“Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed.  The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and produces wonderful results.” – James 5:16
Confession brought out loving support – not judgment or disgust.   We prayed together which brough about wonderful results.  She was able to love me more because she knew me more.  You can only be loved as much as you are known.  Likewise, I love her more because I know her more.  
So to be REALLY loved, we need to be REALLY real.


Monday, January 28, 2013

My favorite things Monday - catching up with friends on the phone

In this instant gratification Facebook and text world that we live in, nothing beats the rejuvenation of the soul like chatting on the phone with a friend that you haven't chatted with in far too long. 

I'm making it a point this year to be better at keeping in touch with friends.  I admit - I am HORRIBLE at keeping in touch.  Lucky for me, my friends are EXACTLY the same so they always understand.  At least that's what they tell me anyways.  The ones who are still talking to me, that is.

I've shared my Facebook and texting love/hate relationship regarding dating here if you're interested in my thoughts on that topic.

One of my long time childhood friends who is on my Facebook, but more in the "Facebook voyeur" category (she reads everybody elses' stuff but does not post much herself).... well I thought her life was ho-hum but little did I know Mr. Wonderful invaded her life and she is a happy little in-love camper.  I was so happy hearing her share her joy!  You just don't get that from Facebook or texting.

So pick up your phone and DIAL IT and tell an old friend that you were thinking about her.  I double dog dare you!  

Saturday, January 26, 2013

messy house = messy heart

I notice this trend.  When my house is a mess, my head is also a mess.   When my head is a mess, my heart is a mess.  So….

It’s time to clean my house!
I’ve said it a million times and even blogged about it here – I cannot stand clutter.  I don’t like clutter in my house, in my head, or in my heart.  Sometimes, the clutter in my heart is difficult to organize and clean-up real quick like.  Some things just take time to pray through which makes my heart messy while the dust settles.  Sometimes I cannot control those things that make my heart messy – like when someone else does the messing-up, but I can control my house which helps clean-up my head, which helps clean-up my heart eventually.  IMHO, a messy heart manifests itself in all of us in one way or another; sometimes a messy house, sometimes excess weight, sometimes excessive partying, or other addictive behaviors (even obsessive working out), etc. 
Does this make sense?  When my heart is messy, I am looking for comfort somewhere/somehow.  Often that starts with dumping junk all over my dining room table.  (Actually, I think it starts with the shoe rug in the laundry room.  Hmmm…)  “Things” just start piling up and up and up and become such a mess to the point where I feel physically uncomfortable and irritable in my own home!  YIKES!!!  Then I get cranky and my heart issues turn into more heart issues and then I come unglued or I eat crappy foods.  Whatever happens - it’s never good. 
There is a calmness for me that comes from an orderly home.  Order allows me space to think. To breathe. To be. To pray. To get back to myself. 
So, as I clean my house, my head feels cleaner and more orderly, and my heart… well, for now, that will follow.  But that’s OK.  God is taking his time with me right now and showing me all sorts of nooks and crannies that need to be cleaned in my heart and teaching me new tools to clean with.  Like this - straight from the Good Book:
“Create in me a clean heart, O God.  Renew a loyal spirit within me.” ~ Psalm 51:10 NLT      
Our real cleansing comes from within.  For me, though, it’s hard to get inside (my heart) without also organizing the outside (my head and my home). 
So, when you come to my house and it’s a disaster, please ask me about the condition of my heart.  There is usually a story there.     


Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Get this chubby monkey off my back already!

It's been long enough.  44.5 years is waaaay too long to be carrying this load.  Time to go - chubby monkey!

I was a fat kid. (I hit 200 my sophomore year of high school.)  I'm actually the slimmest that I have ever been in my life right now, but I still have this extra layer of chub that really, really, really bothers me.  It overwhelms me and actually gives me anxiety that makes me depressed, which causes me to eat the wrong foods for comfort and fullness, which gives me anxiety that makes me depressed which makes me eat for comfort and to feel full...in private (yes, binges)... and so the cycle goes.  I hate hearing people say, "You look great!  You don't have any weight to lose."  Well, they have never seen me naked.  It's not pretty.  And this constant feeling of defeat and failure is tearing me apart inside. I've just never quite gotten there.  Close, but not quite.  Close doesn't count anymore.  Close is Satan saying that it's OK to settle and compromise.

So I joined Weight Watchers on New Years' Eve and officially started my diet on January 1st.  Yes, I AM calling it a "diet" because I am consciously restricting my calories right now.  "Diet" helps me realize it's a temporary sacrifice.  When I think I can't have something like white sugar ever again, I panic.  With my "diet," I can have white sugar if I plan for it.  I'm already down 6.4 pounds.  I will not allow the scale to define me day to day anymore, so am only getting weighed at my meetings on Wednesdays.  I'll keep better track of my progress here on my blog.  But NO NAKED PICTURES.  Mercy.  In addition to my WW meetings, I've joined an accountability group on Facebook which has been such a blessing! You can check us out on www.athomewithkim.com. It's called Weigh-In Wednesdays (WIW).  Clink the link below and you will be there.  I am also into the book "Made to Crave" by Lysa TerKeurst.  It's all good stuff!

While I am on my "diet," I am also making lifelong lifestyle changes like less carbs and more veggies and fruit.  I haven't been very disciplined about working out this winter, but I ran/walked 3 miles yesterday on my treadmill.  I'm getting my MOJO back slowly but surely. 

Back to the chubby monkey on my back....

I feel that it is Satan telling me that I can't do this.  I'm this close to feeling like my best self (16.4 pounds away, to be exact) and the enemy is telling me I can't do it.  Oh yeah?  God says I CAN!!! 

"For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength." ~ Philippians 4:13    

And my God is way stronger than the enemy any day of the week!

But - I have to believe this truth.  REALLY believe this truth.

Something has clicked this time.  I am determined to break free of this chubby monkey.  I have my WIW Sisters praying for me and supporting me, I believe in myself, but most importantly, my Creator wants me to be the best version of me that I can be!  He wants this chubby monkey off my back too.

Bye bye chubby monkey!  I won't miss you one bit!

Friday, January 18, 2013

”Hold on to the Promises “

My Bible this morning seemed to magically open right up to this verse:

“… ‘My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.’…”  (2 Corinthians 12:9)

Jesus said that!  He promises that his power works best when we are weak.  It does not say He likes for us to be weak, but says He promises to be our strength when we are weak.  (Paul wrote this, and at that time he was being persecuted for sharing the gospel.)  His grace is all I need. 

So, if I fill myself with Christ, I will be stronger that I could possibly ever be on my own.  In this, it draws me closer to Him.  So in that way, like Paul, I understand the good that comes from pain.  His grace is all I need.    

I will focus on grace today, and the promise that He will show his power - just for today.  I will deal with tomorrow, tomorrow. Today, I choose to hold on to this promise.  I get anxious when I think about the “big picture,” not knowing what lies ahead, but I will focus only on today, today.  I’ll deal with tomorrow, tomorrow.  (I am a slow learner sometimes, so need to repeat this to myself over and over and over…)  His grace is all I need.

“Your day to day choices determine what your tomorrows will become.”  I don’t know where I heard that, but there is so much truth there.  If I chose grace today, and then again on the next day, then the next – my tomorrows will become much stronger and before I realize it, I will be flexing my Jesus muscles because I have healed and feel strong again.

Can I get an Amen!?     

What promises get you through tough spots? 

“Promises” by Sanctus Real (tidbit: Matt, the lead singer, goes to my church when he is not on the road performing.  I saw him sing this live last fall at our church.)

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

PB2 – I love you!

If you have not tried this – go get some now!  This stuff is the answer to getting your creamy, dreamy peanut butter fix without all of the fat and calories. 

They somehow take slow roasted peanuts and press them to remove 85% of the fat and oil, and then put the powdered peanut stuff into a jar.  I bought this at Whole Foods in Ann Arbor, because my little hometown IGA is just not hip to the healthy beat. If you know what I mean.  I heard that Kroger has it in the health food aisle. There is also a chocolate version which I will try next and give you a full report.   It was about $5 for the jar and worth every cent for this delicious milkshake.

In a blender, combine:

1 cup milk - I used to use skim, but 1% just tastes better and it’s only 2.5 grams of fat – so I say, “live a little!”  I recently discovered that this is actually better with unsweetened almond milk and less calories! 
1 chopped banana
3-4 ice cubes
2 Tbsp. PB2

That's it.

Now blend. 

It was very thick and frothy.  I should have taken a picture of the finished product, but I was so excited to taste it that once I started in on it I could not stop.  So here is my empty glass.  Cheers!

4 WW points+ with 1% cow's milk
2 WW points+ If you use unsweetened almond milk, and I think tastes better.



Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Push your groove button!

Sustainable spiritual growth only happens when we do whatever it is that grows us closer to God with and through the Spirit.  Those things are different for each of us (because we are his masterpieces and uniquely made), and different for me as well in different seasons of my life.  Sometimes it is prayer in solitude, and sometimes TobyMac pushes my groove button.  At times, I sit with my Bible and nothing seems to grab me – other times a quick YouTube video from a favorite pastor brings me closer to God. Sometimes it is serving.  We can’t just think of going to church, reading our Bibles and such as the ONLY way to grow closer to God.  These are important, but not THE only thing. The Holy Spirit is all around us! 
Here are some of the things that push my groove button:

Prayer in solitude
Prayer with a friend
Prayer with several friends
TobyMac, Needtobreathe, Casting Crowns
Reading my Bible
Reading my Amish books (love those!)
Going to church
lifechurch.tv podcasts
Camping - being outdoors
Running, biking, yard work (seriously)
Serving the poor
Lively conversations with Christian friends
Encouraging a hurting heart
Watching my kids sleep
Watching my kids play
Watching my kids eat
Watching my kids pray
Making up rhyming words that end in -ay
Family shin digs

What pushes YOUR groove button?  What gets you flowing with the Spirit?

Monday, January 14, 2013

It’s not all about YOU!

“If you help the poor, you are lending to the Lord – and he will repay you!”  ~ Proverbs 19:17

Want the best therapy in the world to take you mind off yourself and your issues?  Go serve the poor!   We wallow in our self-pity about this, that, or the other thing and totally forget that the world is not all about us. People are lonely.  They are hungry.  They are unloved.  They are unwanted by the world.   We have SO much to be thankful for.  Forget about yourself for a bit and share the love of Jesus by serving others.  It will take your mind off of your problems real quick! 

This morning, my son and his buddy and I volunteered at our church's food ministry feeding the poor and homeless.  I do not mean to boast about my good deed for the day, but want to share my experience and maybe inspire you to serve in some way as well.  You will get so much more out of it than you give – which makes me feel kind-of guilty! 
One of my happy places is serving the poor.  I also will admit that I feel a little guilty about serving the poor because although I am doing it to share the love of Jesus as we are instructed to do in the Bible, I get so much gratification out of it that I feel almost ashamed of myself.  It fills me!  It makes me overflow with JOY by being a servant and that repayment is enough for me.  There is a great big world out there full of people who need food, clothing, shelter, but most of all - to experience the LOVE of Jesus.  When these people come for nourishment and you smile and say hello, it may be just enough to brighten their day.  Even if just for that moment you help them feel the love of Jesus pouring out through you, isn’t that enough?  You know, that “… love your neighbor as yourself” part that is so easy to overlook.  Put others before yourself and see what happens.  Being a vessel is the coolest thing ever!    

Also, I want my kids to see that there is a hurting world out there and we all need to do our part to grow the Kingdom by telling the world about Jesus.  And through our acts of kindness, hopefully my kids experience Jesus flowing through them.

Now, please go out and serve! J

“If you can’t feed a hundred people, then feed just one.”  by Mother Theresa