Mar 29, 2009

To Comfort or to Confront?

After reading Mark Batterson's post this morning, I thought I needed to share something with anyone who may be struggling with this very question. Mark has some such wisdom so go check it out.

This is such a difficult area for me and I tend to fail miserably. I don't know if my Esther study is getting me a little ahead of myself in thinking I can make an impact, but I happened to experience a good and a bad response from confronting over the past two weeks. Both friends are facing pretty big issues in life, but one responding well, and the other not so well.

Trying to comfort is normally my motto. Just love the person, cry with them, help where you can, and stay out of giving your opinion. However, when that friend is close to you and you FEEL God may not be the center of their decision making, I feel confronting them is worth the try. Be careful with what you feel, feelings can be wrong.

First scenario, the friend did not want to hear what I said, but she listened and prayed about it. In the next few weeks, she thanked me. She acted on what was right and is confident that God will be there with her obedience. She knows I love God more than her and cannot disagree with the Word. I also love her bunches and want her to be happy despite it making waves sometimes.

Second scenario, a disaster. I've probably lost a friend and I am so wishing I would have never spoke my heart. Once your words are out there, they're out there. I am praying God blesses this friend and that I am completely wrong on what I spoke. I could have been gentler, less accusing, more compassionate, and more understanding. I should have just held my tongue and let someone else speak the truth. Sometimes a person that is too close to you, just needs you to love them.

My passion is encouraging women. I want them to be lovers of the Word, the best friend and encourager to their husbands, and to be content with the blessings God has given them. It is absolutely Satan's desire to take my passion away and to tell me I will never do this, or do this well. I have to trust that God is allowing things to not always go the way I want in helping my friends because he is trying to show me that it is not about ME. It is always about HIM working through me. It doesn't matter how hard I try and think I know what is right, it is only God who can be the true comforter and the one to ultimately confront in this world.

Mar 19, 2009

Facebook...Are You On???

I haven't seen many posts on the positives and negatives of Facebook, but I just wanted to share my own observations with those 4 or 5 humans on the planet who have not joined into the madness.


* A super fun way to keep up with those high school and college friends you haven't seen in years.


* They often at liberty will post the most unflattering pictures of you doing the most inappropriate things you might not necessary want to relive from 20 some odd years ago. I'm just saying.


* You get to know what others are doing every waking moment of the day.


* You get to know what others are doing every waking moment of the day.


* When you have a fun get together, party, or shower with your friends, you can post pictures of all the good times.


* When your friends have fun get togethers, parties or showers without you, you also get to see pictures of that. Not always so fun.


* It is so great to see a new friend appear that wants to be your friend.


* People can decline your friendship (not a good feeling), defriend you if they want(has happened), or they can block you completely from being their friend until eternity (well, not to worry if they are Christians, you will see them again in heaven)

All in all, I love facebook and the friendships I have reconnected with and the joy it brings me to stay in touch with all my loved ones. If you are thinking about FB I hope this helps, and if your already doing it and aren't my friend, look me up.

I want to leave you with one more positive. It is a small glimpse into your life and if you are a Christian, it can be a wonderful way for people to be encouraged by your walk with Christ. Be honest, but don't try to be something you're not. Enjoy and don't become obsessed as I often have done. "Let your light shine before all men to see, so that your Father in heaven may be glorified". Matthew 5:16

Mar 8, 2009

A Beautiful Bride and a Very Proud Aunt

When Skip and I first started dating, I had to make sure he was a kid friendly kind of guy before I got too serious. My sister had just had her second child, so I decided to take her sweet little 2 yr. old, Stephanie, for an afternoon of fun at our city park. Skip went along and I knew right then and there that he not only loved kids, he had a way with them that won me over even more. Above is a picture of that special day which is forever etched in my mind of my fun-loving little sweet niece named Steph.

Fast forward 16 years and all of a sudden this little girl was becoming a woman. She started dating and she told me of the love she had for a certain handsome boy named Charlie. I didn't meet this boy for another year or so, but I knew that look. I had already known that look because it is the same look I had in my eyes 16 yrs. earlier when I started dating my husband Skip. You know the love bug well when you have experienced it yourself. There is no turning back.

Fast forward another two years and my beautiful niece came over to my house to hang out with me and my kids. Something was different about her and I knew it instantly, but it took her a few days to let me in on it. She called me with an anxious, yet excited heart to let me know that she was expecting a child. Steph was not married and all she was concerned about in telling me was that how would this be explained to my kids who loved her so dearly and looked up to her in every way. I immediately told her that those kids have been entrusted to me, not her, and it was my responsibility to handle that. I told her I loved her unconditionally and I would love that precious baby too. It didn't matter to me if she decided to get married or not, I was happy for this new life and I knew God would bring his glory to this whole new chapter if she trusted in Him for her good.

Now, these two young people (Steph and Charlie) had a decision to make and it was made without hesitation. They kept this precious little boy they named Deacon, and my whole family has been blessed beyond measure with his arrival. Deacon is now crawling everywhere, saying mama and melting every heart that comes in contact with him.

On Friday, March 6th Stephanie and Charlie stood in the presence of God, family and friends and became husband and wife. What God has brought together for good has blown our minds. Skip and I have been blessed to counsel with this young couple, watch their love deepen for one another, and see that a baby can truly bless a couple in ways that far exceeded anyone's expectations. Everyone in our family has been affected in some way and grown in love and compassion through watching the events unfold. God truly did an amazing work in so many lives.

I am never excusing the way God intended for marriage to come first, but I have seen firsthand that God is ready to make beauty and happiness for those who turn to Him for direction and strength. My prayer is for this relationship to be one that others will find inspiration from and assurance in the love of our Father in heaven.

May Stephanie, Charlie and Deacon have a life full of blessings and continue to place God at the center of their lives and always trust in Him and Him alone. Congratulations sweet Steph-your aunt loves you so very much!