Monthly Archives: October 2014

Feeling “All Shook Up?” Part 2

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“He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.” (Psalm 23:2 KJV)

 

“Many of the places we may be led into will appear to us as dark, deep dangerous and somewhat disagreeable. But it simply must be remembered that He is there with us in it. He is very much at work in the situation. It is His energy, effort and strength expended on my behalf that even in this deep, dark place is bound to produce a benefit for me.” (A Shepherd Looks at Psalm 23, by Phillip Keller)

FLASHBACK: As the tech wheeled me down the long halls of Northwestern Hospital in Chicago, all I could think about was finally having an answer.   An answer for the plethora of bizarre medical symptoms I had been experiencing for months. I had four little ones at home ages 1-8 years, and they desperately wanted their mommy back.  She wheeled me into a room; the doctor walked in, closed the door, and began speaking to me as if I were a naughty toddler.  She explained to me that the EEG was completely normal, as well as the other tests. She condescendingly informed me that I did not want to have seizures, because “people who have seizures are not allowed to drive.” She likewise explained that I did not want to have Myasthenia Gravis either, because “it is a terrible disease that sometimes leaves ones in wheelchairs.”

Did she honestly believe I was there because I really WANTED to have some terrible illness?!

She then let me know they had ruled out the possibility of there being anything organically wrong with me. She had also taken the liberty of making an appointment for me with one of their leading psychiatrists.

As she spoke, I felt myself slipping into a black hole. My world was “ALL SHOOK UP!”

Even after arriving home, all I could see was the blackness of the situation. I couldn’t see how any “benefit” could come from this “deep, dark place.”

About an hour later a friend dropped off some food and a sticky note. The sticky note read: “But he knoweth the way that I take: when he hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold.” Job 23:10

After reading that simple verse from God’s Word, …my perspective changed. Jesus knew what was happening; He was with me in the trial, and in the end I would “come forth as gold!”

Friends, our Good Shepherd promises us “green pastures and still waters.” But we must follow Him, even when it “appears to us as dark, deep dangerous and somewhat disagreeable.”

Fast-forward 15 years: I now have a diagnosis of Myasthenia Gravis and a seizure disorder. I’m not allowed to drive right now, and the Myasthenia Gravis does affect my daily life. But thankfully it forces me to “lie down in the green pastures and rest beside the quiet waters.”

What about you? Is your life “ALL SHOOK UP!”?

 Follow Jesus (our Good Shepherd). “This deep, dark place is bound to produce a benefit!”

 

How I was AWAKENED to Church 4 Chicks

The deadline for registering for the 2014 conference is October 31st! #AWAKEN1Day

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We were sitting in Chick-Fil-A enjoying a large glass of un-sweet tea with lots of ice. Chick-Fil-A iced tea is more refreshing than the average fast food drink. They seem to brew it just right. Between sips, I was asking my friend about creative ways to launch the ministry God had laid on my heart. She asked me if I had heard of Shelley Hendrix, and her ministry, Church 4 Chicks? She felt learning from Shelley might be a great way to begin. I flatly replied “no,” as my mind was questioning, “Church 4 Chicks?” “Is that a church just for women?” “No thanks, I didn’t want to be a part of a church for women only.”

At the Holy Spirit’s prompting, after finishing my fellowship time with my friend, I began to take a deeper look at this “chick church” through on-line research. Boy did I have a…

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Feeling “All Shook Up?”

 

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 “For I know the plans that I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope.” (Jeremiah 29:11 NASB)

 

I walked barefoot upon the rough brown carpet into our new bedroom and fell into a heap onto our bed. The tears came slowly at first, and then the sobs. I don’t often cry, but when I do, it’s messy. My hubby rushed to my side and asked what was wrong. “I… miss… our… home,” I managed to choke out. We’d recently moved to St. Louis from Corpus Christi, TX. Leaving behind my whole side of the family and the only place I’d ever called home. My husband had decided to go back to seminary for a year and ponder our future. Did he want to leave the pastoral ministry and perhaps go into missions? We were taking a year for him to study, and for us to seek the Lord regarding our future. My world was “all shook up” as we maneuvered apartment living with an overactive two year old and a 6-month-old…and no family in town to babysit.

The hardest part for me was we not have a clear plan. Just tell me the plan, and I’ll work the plan. That’s how I roll.

I believe the times we feel the most “shook up” are the times we step into the unknown.

Please take a moment and contemplate the words of Jeremiah the prophet, written above. If the Lord, the sovereign King of the universe, our Creator, who chose us in eternity past…”knows the plan” isn’t that enough? The plans are for “welfare and not calamity” he promises us “a future and a hope.”

As Holley Gerth quotes from John 5:17 above, “the Father is always at His work, and the Son is working as well.”

Close your eyes and pray with me. “Lord, when life feels ‘all shook up,’ may we rest in the fact that You have a plan, and You are working that plan, and that is enough. You are enough. May we rest peaceably in You.”

What about YOU?

Do you feel your life is “all shook up?” Look to the One who with one shout of “Peace, be still” can calm the anxiety in our hearts.

I close with the words of one of my favorite hymns; He Leadeth Me.

“Lord, I would place my hand in Thine,

Nor ever murmur nor repine;

Content, whatever lot I see,

Since ’tis my God that leadeth me.”

P.S.: The year we had in St. Louis ended up being so very special. The Lord used it as a sabbatical time for my husband, and to confirm God’s call for him to continue in pastoral ministry for a season. The nurture I received from the seminary wives group was priceless. If we hadn’t stepped out of our comfort zone in the early years of our marriage, our faith in God’s provision and guidance would not be what it is now.