Tag Archives: 2013

Learning to Dance Brave

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“Fearful? Fear is always the first step of faith. Forward!” Ann Voskamp

“Whenever you are lost, forward is always the way Home.” Ann Voskamp

I am excited to share this Joy Journey with you!! But as sure as God is at work, the enemy is not far behind.

Yep. So, I took some quiet time away with the Lord today. In God’s sovereignty, I found myself reading the most wonderful passage in Hebrews 11, The Hall of Faith.

In my mind I walked and looked as if portraits of faith lined the walls of this journey.

By faith…..so many cherished men and women of faith led the way with their stories. And I reminded that, no matter what, by an act of faith, they were called by God and it most always led them into difficult places.

Today my heart was refocused for a new opportunity of faith: Learning to “Dance Happy” (Ann Voskamp) So, when fear not faith relentlessly pursues my mind and heart. When anxious thoughts long to consume me and shake my spirit. I have two choices: Fear or Faith

What things shake your faith? Push you to run into fear and anxious living? Are you hurled into an abyss and wonder how to escape? Do you (and I) worry about the things that never really happen? Or if they do, God rules by His Sovereign hand?

I would list my failed faith here but for best use of space, i surrender this time to a faithful God. The Way, the Truth and Life who completes my weakness and lifts my spirit to one of love, power, trust, dependance and grace upon grace!!

John Calvin said that the stability of the world depends on the rejoicing in Your (God’s) works.

I flounder at absorbing the fullness of God’s works!! Yet am smiling all inside at the thought of the Happy Dance and throwing anxiety and fear off the throne that I have empowered it to live !!

I continue on, intent on holding the line of faith that has been entrusted to me. NO MATTER WHAT!! And to replace the fear of the abyss with the will of God for my life that brings me such eternal joy. In every little daily thing, to pursue rejoicing over His works in my little life of faith!!

“I could go on and on, but I’ve run out of time. There are so many more—Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, David, Samuel, the prophets. . . .

Through acts of faith, they toppled kingdoms, made justice work, took the promises for themselves. They were protected from lions, fires, and sword thrusts, turned disadvantage to advantage, won battles, routed alien armies. Women received their loved ones back from the dead. There were those who, under torture, refused to give in and go free, preferring something better: resurrection. Others braved abuse and whips, and, yes, chains and dungeons.

We have stories of those who were stoned, sawed in two, murdered in cold blood; stories of vagrants wandering the earth in animal skins, homeless, friendless, powerless—the world didn’t deserve them!—making their way as best they could on the cruel edges of the world.

Not one of these people, even though their lives of faith were exemplary, got their hands on what was promised.

God had a better plan for us: that their faith and our faith would come together to make one completed whole, their lives of faith not complete apart from ours” Hebrews 11:32-40

Friends, this is where the hall of faith does not end, but continues…..with you and I writing a faith-filled life story.. One little faith step at a time….for His glory!!

Today, my joy journal entry:
A Faithful God

And me……

I am learning with each new day how to Dance Brave!

Learning to Dance Brave

Learning to Dance Brave

Small Handful Of Faith

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So, I may as well warn you that this is the LONG version……a week early!!

I promise to condense my wandering sentences as I find the “short” answer to the seemingly “simple” question!!

“Share a small step you took toward your dream.” Holley Gerth

Have you ever had that moment in your journey of faith when the Holy Spirit crashes into your understanding? Shakes your soul’s core? Stirs your heart to pause for reflection? While flawed and imperfect, you have prayed and been faithful in every little faith-filled step. Yet there are some days when it almost feels like you have really not done or been enough. There should have been more to it, there is more to it and its simplicity makes you wonder, Lord, did I miss anything of the more that You would have me do?

You know that God is near. You cannot escape the capture of the Holy Spirits moment. You feel the spirit of God’s touch and you are drawn to its fullness. You have followed Him knowing that every conversation, dream, thought and desire sent before the throne of God was heard with the heart and arms. of your loving Father.  And once again, you purpose to listen….REALLY listen. Heart intent on hearing His Spirit’s heart voice as He whispers,  “I am here.” Before your mind can comprehend His presence, your heart responds as your soul man screams……YES, this is it!!!That is what it all means in the reflection of every Kingdom of God movement that you have ever made in your life in serving your Lord and Savior and every little thing you have done matters. Wow!!

God-sized Dream = A desire in your heart for more of what God has for you.

When challenged with the upcoming weeks question, I slowed my pace, and with that pause, smiled deep, leaned my head back  and closed my eyes. In my heart,  I journeyed back to where the first baby steps of this earnest God seekers life began. Singing Mary’s song at the age of five and realizing the message and power of the words as hearts responded. At the age of ten, sitting in a liturgical swirl of words with greater meaning than my age could absorb. All the while, the stirring movement of the Holy Spirit drawing my heart, tears streaming down my face so rapidly that my hands could not contain them. At sixteen surrendering my heart to Jesus Christ, the forgiveness of my sin, eternal life and surrendered my life to His Lordship. I understood then the heart of a servant and longed to be one that served well.

I remember the 2013 God-Sized Dreams Team application explanation of God-Sized Dreams:

“A God-sized dream is not about size–It’s about the desires God has placed within you that perfectly fit YOUR heart”

As I am living……my soul murmured……

Desires, heart, spiritual gifts, abilities, personality, life experience….Dare I dream?

Dreams dreamed. Dreams realized. Failed dreams that lacked faith on my part. Dreams growing. Dreams changing. Challenging Dreams Bigger Than My ability to believe and here I stand the hope-filled dreamer…..still dreaming. His faithfulness the sure thing. Still doubting that God can use any part of my lack for His good and glory. I make an analysis of each “opportunity” that God speaks to my heart brings the discovery that each dream hoped for started with one little baby step at a time!!I knew upon coming into relationship with Jesus that I was created for the more than what I could even comprehend. The dream giver seeking out my heart and soul for His own.

Today as I prepared to share the small step that I have taken to follow the dreams that God is currently writing on my heart, I was overwhelmed. My chest rose with a swell of deep breath, and I clearly see in my minds-eye that every purposeful step of faith has led to moments of searching for the more of God and what He might do with my small, yet sincere handful of faith. I am still on a journey towards the desires that God has placed within me that perfectly fit my heart. And I can only pray that the fullness of all that He has done in my life will be an offering that is filled with a sweet fragrance that is acceptable, pleasing and honoring. That in some small corner of His world this offering will matter to Him as He sees the gift as eternal.

Overall, my little life’s dream journey has brought me into and prepared me for this one moment in time. The same little girl who came into a personal relationship with Jesus Christ continues to wonder how God can use my small handful of faith lifted unto Him as an offering for His glory. I am living mid-dream, and He continues to woo me into the next place of dreaming His dreams. His desires to use His creation for His glory and good! Each new day is an exercise of listening to the Holy Spirit as it grips our hearts.

I am almost sure that I am not alone. Maybe you are standing where I was. Wondering if in some small way this dream that is gripping you is worthy and that you are capable. It is almost embarrassing to say it out loud for fear that someone would think it strange. No one is capable or worthy apart from Him but in Him ALL things are possible.

“The way of the Dreamer is difficult, but anything less is hardly living at all.” The Dream Giver by Bruce Wilkinson

Does God have dreams for YOUR heart? The truth is: The hardest thing to do is to take the first step. In faith, believing that God brings your small handful of faith to bring honor and glory to Him. It is a beautiful thing to experience the moment that He enlarges our hearts with His dreams and builds our faith. Without a doubt, the same God that placed dreams in my heart will give to you the dreams that perfectly fit YOUR heart!!

I am praying for you. If there are dreams you need to share, if your heart and mind are in conflict and if you need a friend to share the journey……from one dreamer to another…..allow me the joy of joining your dream journey. I promise…..you can believe that your small world matters to God AND to me!!

To His beloved……..Take one simple step at a time…..and find new life in His dreams for you.

You’ll find me Living Simply and Simply Living His dream for my life…….. Mel

Small Handful of Faith

Small Handful of Faith

2013 God-Sized Dreams Life Mission Statement

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Happy New Year!! God is doing great things!!

What a joy to begin 2013 in communication with the Lord as it relates to the mission in life that I am on. I am humbled to have been chosen to be a part of the Holley Gerth~God-Sized Dream Team. I find it challenging to stand before a Holy God and believe that I bring anything worthy to His work in this world. I am for sure a less-than-perfect reflection of Him on most days. Yet, in my heart I genuinely desire to be on mission before Him as I love and serve those I have been called to care for.

I faced a blank page as I read the challenge at hand: write one sentence that describes your life’s mission. Gulp. I am 50 years old and have never stopped serving long enough to consider what description should be written. I confess my greatest mission in life to date has been loving, serving and raising my family alongside of caring for my husband and our 31 year marriage. I feel like I am in kindergarten all over again. Writing and scratching out words, reviewing my strengths and skills, wondering if a sentence could contain all that is written in my heart.

The words begin to come together and I thought I might be embarrassed to even share the picture being painted by my words. Humbled even more than before, I knew this was the beginning of something new. Living in this moment in a dream fulfilled, looking forward to how God might expand the dream to open the door for even more opportunity in 2013 and the days to come.

In this moment, my heart is…..

grateful……

filled with a heart and desire to bring a new level of relationship with the Lord to the community of women and families that I am currently serving…..to lead their hearts into grace-filled and grateful living through our Joy Journey……

stirring…….

expectant….

hope-filled…

broken before my Lord…..

longing……to do more……to be more……to dream more…….to see Him miraculously move in hearts…..

believing God….

resting in His faithfulness for each day….

rejoicing in His provision, leadership and direction…….

beginning to dream new dreams…..

looking forward to Jesus moments……more living and growing…..loving and learning…….

trusting in His dream for me….He is the perfect and completeness of that……

So, I end where I began. I bring nothing of value to the Kingdom of God apart from Him…..so I lift my 2013 life mission statement back up to you Lord. I pray that You seed it, nurture it, bless it by sending Your Spirit through it and speak to my heart and affirm Your plan, Your will and Your dream for me!! May You be pleased!!

What statement will my life make in 2013?

I believe God has created and called me to graciously support, inspire, lead and encourage women and families by sharing my simple journey of faith as I write, relate and teach from God’s Word.

I am Your servant. You are my Lord……be it unto me according to Your perfect will!

I will obey.

And continue to love, serve and honor You with all my heart………..May my surrendered life bring honor and glory to You!!!!

Living Simply~Simply Living

Melanie

Happy New Year!!

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“2013- Love Big & Pray Big”

 
“I so love the beginning of the new year! 
Each year in preparation I create something that lists my 
goals & hopes for the following year. 
 
These aren’t really resolutions, just things I want to remind myself 
as I approach the following year.
 I pray about the things God has in store for me in the coming year
 and ask him to lay those things on my heart.” 
 
 
2013

“My favorites are 
Ask God to break your heart for what breaks His
Stop the glorification of the busy
Be a Jesus girl who rises up & unexpectedly gives graces
Be a go giver
and Pray BIG!”
 
“Click HERE to print your own PDF copy
or just right click on the image to save it as a JPG.”
 
Thanks Sweet Blessings for sharing!! Love it!!
 
 
 

So the happiest of new years to you friends….

Living Simply~Simply Living!!

Melanie