Monday, October 27, 2014

Hardship After Deliverance: Shouldn't the Journey After Deliverance Be Easy?

"Lord, if you have delivered me, then why am I still struggling?" That was the question I humbly laid at His feet the other day and His sweet response stopped me in my tracks.  I have been reading the book of Exodus and studying the life of Moses, specifically the Israelites' deliverance from Egypt, and the Lord showed me a humbling revelation that caused me to stop in my tracks and worship my Creator and changed my outlook on my struggles.  Apparently, I was under the impression that once the Lord delivered me from something that was oppressing me, then everything would be smooth sailing.  I would just coast right on out of that dilemma and wait for the next one. And, in reading about the Israelites, I would have to say that it seems they had a similar mindset.

The Israelites were enslaved in Egypt and mistreated under Pharaoh's rule for 400 years, but the Lord came to their rescue just as He promised.  The Lord sent Moses to lead them out of Egypt.  So, the Lord freed them from their oppression and mistreatment under Pharaoh, then led them away from Pharaoh, and through the Red Sea, safely to the other side with no more threat of Pharaoh and his army to overtake them.  In Exodus 15, Moses leads the Israelites "away from the Red Sea and they went into the Desert of Shur.  For three days they traveled in the desert without finding water.  When they came to Marah, they could not drink its water because it was bitter...So the people grumbled against Moses" (15:22-24).  That is just like me!

Like the Israelites, I had been oppressed.  Although my oppression did not result in severe physical harm, I still carried a financial weight that I prayed the Lord would lift off of me and my family. Like the Israelites, the Lord was faithful and rescued me from it.  And, like the Israelites, I thought everything should be smooth sailing once that happened.  I didn't expect to hit any bumps in the road; I mean, the Lord delivered me from my oppression.  Everything would be grand, glorious, and easy, right?!?  The Lord was faithful delivering the Israelites out of slavery, but on their journey out, they hit a few snags.  What was their first reaction?  The same as mine...grumbling!  After the Lord had shown them (me) kindness, faithfulness, love, and provision...we grumbled!  How ungrateful can I be?!?  The Israelites couldn't find water, then when they actually found some water and expected to gain some relief from it, they couldn't drink it because it was bitter.  They also grumbled and complained when they were hungry because they didn't have enough food to eat.  Both times, the Lord was very patient with them, providing a camp near 12 springs of water and raining down manna from heaven!  That's the Lord...He wants to bless us and "do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine," but He wants us to trust Him, to lean on Him wholeheartedly, even when the world's logic says that it's wrong or backward (Ephesians 3:20).

The Lord provided in ways the Israelites never saw coming, in abundant and bountiful ways, just like He wants to do for you and me.  Just like He does in my life.  So, after He delivered me from my weight of oppression and things still weren't smooth, finances were still tight, we were still going to struggle, even in our obedience, I sat down with my Father and humbly asked Him, "if you have delivered me from this weight, then why are we still struggling?"  He whispered the most gentle, patient, and loving answer: "So that you will continue to rely on me."  That response brought the biggest smile to my face and my heart leapt with joy.  That's my Father; He loves me too much to let me go on my own.  He loves me so much that He holds on tightly to me.  He loves me so much and wants to bless me in ways I never see coming, but to do that, I must hold on to Him.  I must "trust in the Lord with all my heart and lean not on my own understanding; in all my ways acknowledge him, and he will make my paths straight" (Proverbs 3:5-6).  That was the answer I got...when things are not easy, it might be a test of my faith.  Will I trust Him completely without relying on my own limited knowledge and common sense, but just boldly walk with Him wherever He leads?

Saturday, August 2, 2014

My Joy and Delight

Psalm 43:3-5- "Send forth your light and your truth, let them guide me; let them bring me to your holy mountain, to the place where you dwell.  Then will I go to the altar of God, to God, my joy and my delight.  I will praise you with the harp, O God, my God.  Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God."

As I was spending precious early morning time with my God before my day began, He showed me this gem of a passage.  I love that He always knows exactly where I am, exactly what I'm going through, and exactly what I need, and I love His gentle whisper.  No matter how chaotic, overwhelmed, or out of control I feel my life is, no matter how frazzled I am, God is never frazzled.  He never speaks to me in a panic, but always with a still, quiet voice, reminding me of his faithfulness and to calm down and rest in Him.

The other morning, when I read this passage, was no exception.  This passage was exactly what I needed to hear, remember, and get through the day.  God's Word is always timely. In my most frazzled, overwhelmed, or tired states, this passage is what I need to remember.  No matter how crazy my days are, the only thing that matters is that I have a clear path to Him.  I only need a clear path to the altar of God, to a place where I can be alone with Him, talk with Him and listen to Him.  In the midst of my days and weeks, no matter how calm or how frenzied, all that matters is that I find my way to Him, where I can bring Him all my emotions, all my fears, and all my circumstances.  He wants to hear from His people and He wants us to open up to Him, to trust Him with all our feelings, even the hard ones.

The Lord has and is what I need every moment of the day, but He usually saves the most precious words of wisdom when I spend quiet, uninterrupted moments with Him.  The Psalmist in Psalm 143:8 meets with God and asks Him to "let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in you.  Show me the way I should go, for to you I lift up my soul."  There is something sacred and special about my morning time with the Lord.  He always has a special Word for me during that time, and it's always truth that meets me right where I am and gives me sustenance for the day ahead.  I love my morning time with my Savior and I meet with Him in expectation, knowing He will remind me of His unfailing love and direct me in the way I should go.  Don't miss what the Lord has ready for you each morning.  He wants to shower His love on you; don't miss it.  Don't miss the daily opportunity to lean on Him, share with Him, and learn from Him.  He loves you and me with a passion no one else can touch!

Monday, July 21, 2014

How to Abide in God's Perfect Peace has a way of creeping its slimy self into my life and winding its way around my body until I am literally held captive by its unyielding grip.  I am paralyzed. I cannot move, breathe, or live apart from its power and control over me.  I have become its slave.  

Paul boldly tells me in 2 Timothy 1:7 that "God did not give us a spirit of timidity [fear], but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline."  Fear does not come from God!  It comes from Satan and, because I am a believer in and follower of Jesus Christ, I have power over fear.  He has equipped me with the weapons and tools to fight against fear in my life; I just have to know them, know my Jesus's heart and His love for me, and use the tools against Satan's darts of fear.  

The other day, my daughter, who loves to play outside, was pretending to drive to the grocery store, so she opened the door to her little coupe and got in.  I was holding our 7 month old son on the front porch, enjoying the cooler summer weather, when I heard my daughter scream and cry out.  I immediately got up and quickly moved toward her.  When I reached her toy car, I learned that she was crying because a tree frog had made its home in her car.  The frog jumped on her leg, then out of the car, and it scared her.  It frightened her so badly that she screamed and cried out.  In that moment, she was paralyzed with fear; she couldn't move.  She had the power to move and the ability to help herself in that situation, but she was so scared, she couldn't.  She is bigger than a tree frog and he will not physically harm her, but she was so scared in the moment that she didn't think logically.  That's how I am with fear in my life.  When it latches on to me, I forget everything God promised me in His Word.  I forget to use His Word to fight off Satan.  I forget the power and control God has given me as His daughter.

Recently, I experienced that nasty, unrelenting parasite we know as fear.  It took such a nasty grip on my life that I could not shake it; I would wake up during the night in a panic.  So, I started praying.  I am a child of God...I have all the power I need to fight off these demons, why am I letting them control me?  I started digging in God's Word and seeking His peace in this situation.  Through the help of the Holy Spirit and a couple of godly women I know, this is what the Lord taught me about the fear that only comes from Satan.

How to Abide in God's Peace (from Philippians 4:4-9):

1.  Rejoice in the Lord ALWAYS!!  Even when I am scared, worried, frightened, frazzled, confused, happy, joyful...even when I am OVERCOME with any of these feelings, I need to REJOICE in Him!  And only because He is worthy!  I should not only rejoice in Him when I am happy or pleased with the way things are going in my life, but always.  This life is not about me!  This life is about God and living for Him, to please Him and bring Him glory because He is everything we need!

2.  Be gentle.  Always and with everyone.  Sometimes, I have a bad habit of speaking or acting harshly with others when I am scared or worried.  When I do that, I am not treating them how Jesus would.  Jesus wasn't scared or worried...He abided in the will of His Father because He knew His Father loved Him more than life itself.  That's where I should be...lying in the boat in the middle of the storm because I know the One Who is in control.  And, instead of treating others harshly, I should be an example of how to experience peace in the midst of a storm.  Jesus knew God's will for Him was death on a cross, yet He did not fear or treat others harshly.  He always made time to help others and spoke gently to those in need who sought Him.

3.  Do not be anxious.  Do not worry about anything!  God is in control.  He holds me and nothing can touch me, not even death itself.  Nothing has control over me except the Holy Spirit.  If I really believe that my heavenly Father loves me more than anything, then I will not worry because I know His heart and I know that He holds me.  No situation comes to me that hasn't already passed through His hands first.  Everything I experience, as long as I am walking with Him, is His will, and should be used to glorify Him.

4.  Thank God and present your requests to Him.  THANK God.  I have to train myself to begin my prayers worshiping and thanking Him, rather than coming to Him with my own desires first.  When I do that, I learn more and more about His heart, His love for me, and His will for my life.  When I come to Him with myself in mind, I miss out on every blessing He has for me because I am focused on myself and not Him.  When I come to Him in thanksgiving and reverence, then I can present my requests to Him.  He wants me to share my heart with Him.  He already knows what I am feeling, but He longs for the intimacy (on my end of the relationship) that comes from me sharing with Him...sharing my thoughts, fears, worries, hopes, dreams, everything.  That helps me rely on Him, seek Him, and to rest in Him because, if I leave my requests with Him, I am not trying to accomplish anything through my own strength.  I leave all the work to Him and trust His answers.  I have never experienced more peace than when I do that!

5.  Think about things that are of God or from God.  I don't know about you, but when I focus on the things of this world, my own failures, or lies from Satan, I get DEPRESSED!  But when I shift my eyes to Him, the One Who holds me in His hand, I become more and more aware of His will for me.  I am confident that the steps I am taking are only because of His leading; and, if he has led me to a certain place, He will provide for all my needs there...I don't have to worry.  I just sit back in surrender and He calms me with His perfect peace.

6.  Learn from God and do what I learn.  God's Word is LIVING and ACTIVE (Hebrews 4:12)!! It is meant to be put into practice.  God's power cannot work in me and through me unless I am actively living out His Word.  As I actively follow Him, obeying His commands and principles, then I experience more and more peace in my life because I am slowly giving up all control to the One Who is in control anyway and allowing Him to work in me and through me.  I become His vessel, and all the pressure is off of me.  I don't have to make anything happen because He is already there.  The Lord knows the beginning, middle, and end of my story...He is already there.  Let Him carry you to the end of your story as only He can and experience His perfect peace along the way!

If we focus on things of this world, we have no hope--the world is dying; it will pass away, and there is evil in this world.  Jesus is our only hope and salvation from sin and death!

Here are more Scripture passages about God's peace:

  • Isaiah: 9:6; 26:3,12; 53:5
  • Philippians 4:4-9
  • Galatians 5:22
  • Romans: 16:20
  • 2 Thessalonians 3:16
  • Hebrews 13:20-21

There are plenty more passages in the Bible to help us abide in God's peace.  Dive into God's Word and ask Him to show you more!!!

Saturday, May 31, 2014

Gardening Lessons

My husband and I, with the help of his father, have planted a garden and are praying for the Lord to produce crops from it.  I think my husband and his parents are trying to completely transform me from a city girl to a country girl.  I think I kind of like it, though.  I like the freedom to plant the crops we choose on our land and the satisfaction that comes from watching the Lord use His blessings, like our land, to provide for our family.  I like it, too, that He is allowing us to be part of that tend the garden and watch Him work through it.  Our garden adventure has been fun, although I never knew how much labor was involved.

Today, as I was pulling grass and weeds out of the garden, my soon-to-be 4 year old asked if she could help.  I said, "Sure!" and pointed her to some grass growing at the edge of the garden.  She was satisfied pulling the grass at the edge of the garden for a while, but as she watched me walking in and through the garden to pull grass, she wanted to join in.  Maybe it was because she felt somewhat insignificant just pulling the grass and weeds at the edge, or maybe it was because she wanted to be in the middle of the action.  She wanted to dive in and be fully involved with me, doing what I was doing and going where I was going.  However, I couldn't let her because this is my first garden and I am very overprotective of it, probably out of insecurity!  But, I did not feel that she was educated or experienced enough to not walk on the vegetable plants in her quest for stray grass and weeds, or to not pull up the plants, mistaking them for weeds, so I had to tell her she could not walk into the garden.  She did not whine or pitch a fit; she was okay with my answer, but soon got bored and walked away.

What she doesn't understand yet is that the longer she hangs around the garden watching Mommy and Daddy tend it and the longer she practices weeding the garden in the areas we designate for her, the more experienced she will get, which will prepare her for the "big" and "important" work of tending the middle of the garden.  Immediately, when my daughter got bored and walked away, I felt the Holy Spirit's conviction...How often am I that way?  How often do I want to do the "big" things for God and to get right in the middle of something big He is doing, without being patient in the training?  I can't expect to be prepared for the big stuff if I get bored during the practice sessions.  I want my daughter to be able to help us IN the garden; similarly, our heavenly Father wants us to do big things for Him and be involved in the action, doing what He's doing and going where He's going, but there is a time that we need to learn, train, and practice before He can let us do those things, before we will really be prepared for the things He has planned for us.

In my own life, in the daily grind, in the seemingly insignificant acts and conversations that make up my days, I need to be participating in them with all that I have.  I need to be thankful for the small things, thankful that God might be preparing me for something bigger and seek to use those things for His glory.  I also don't need to get bored and walk away.  I need to keep working, striving, working for the Lord and not for man, as Colossians 3:23 encourages me to do.  Then, I will be ready when the Lord leads me to bigger things.  But what if bigger things never come?  I truly believe that when we are thankful in the small things and look to Him to use the small things for His glory, we are completely and truly content.  We are happy, thankful, and blessed because God is using us for His glory right where we are!

Friday, May 23, 2014

Mommy Days

"It is good to praise the Lord and make music to your name, O Most High, to proclaim your love in the morning and your faithfulness at night." Psalm 92:1

Good morning!!  I am awake at 7:09 am when I would rather be asleep, catching up on rest.  But, if I were asleep, I would be missing out on one of the greatest times to just sit and soak in God's love and grace for me this morning. It's the's quiet because the kids are still sleeping and I can sit with my Savior and soak in His Word.

I love the anchor verse for this post, Psalm 92:1.  The Lord showed that to me last night and that has been what has held me together for the past few sleepless nights.  My husband has had to travel for work and has not been home to help me with nightly duties for our 5 month old.  Some of you are going to read this and think, she is such a husband has to travel ALL the time for work, I rarely see him, and I am the sole care giver to our kids on a regular basis.  Well, you would be right...I am a pansy when it comes to sleep.  I like getting enough rest.  My husband and our kids don't appreciate sleep as much as I do.  They really don't.  They will fight it until they have nothing left to give and they just pass out...they don't want to miss anything.  I, on the other hand, know that there is not enough time during the day to get everything done anyway, so why stay up late trying and I am ok with the world continuing to spin as I sleep.

There are several things I love about what the Lord is doing during the time my husband has been away.  Most importantly, I love that God knows I am a pansy when it comes to sleep, but He hasn't given up on me.  He loves me so much that He wants the best for me, an abundant life, where He is shaping me to become like Jesus.  My husband's business trip was just the next step in a lifelong process of refining me.  So, I really like that God knows me so well that He knows I am a pansy and loves me anyway. :)  We have recently done away with the swaddle for our 5 month old son, specifically two days before my husband left on business, and he slept wonderfully!!  He slept until 3:30 the first night and 5:00 the second night, and fell asleep immediately after eating when I put him back in his crib.  The first night my husband was not here with us to help me with wake-ups, our son, Gracen, decides that's a good night to wake up every 2-3 hours and he has been consistent in this routine every night my husband has not been here.  Here's the thing...God knows I am a pansy when it comes to sleep, but Satan also knows.  They also both know that my husband is gone and I have no one to physically rely on for help with sleep.  So, Satan attacks my weakest area, but God intended to use this time for good, if I choose to draw near to Him to help me.  So, Satan wants my attitudes to be horrible...he wants me to be such a poor example of Jesus to our kids because I am the one who will be with them the next 4 days.  Only me.  Only broken, messed up, cranky, imperfect me, and I am the only Jesus they will see for the next 4 days.  But when I bring the broken and sleep-deprived pieces of my life to Jesus as an offering of thanksgiving, He honors that.  He has given me energy I never knew I had.  He has provided everything I have needed just like He promises.

In addition to Psalm 92:1, two other verses that the Lord has shown me during this time also stand out to me...Psalm 34:1 and Hebrews 13:15.  Psalm 34:1 says that "I will extol the Lord at all times; his praise will always be on my lips" and the verse in Hebrews reminds me that "through Jesus, therefore, let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise--the fruit of lips that confess His name."  I love those verses, but at the same time, I feel the Holy Spirit leading me to ask myself, Do I really live that?  Do I really extol the Lord ALWAYS, with His praise ALWAYS flowing out of my speech?  And do I truly rely on Jesus to help me continually offer a sacrifice of praise to my God?  I can't do it on my own.  The Word says only through Jesus will I be strong enough and awake enough to offer God the sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving He deserves on a daily basis.

So, when I feel so run down and worn out, when my kids are pulling me in four different directions, I will choose to lean on God and I will choose to go back to these verses.  The Lord wants me to be THANKFUL ALWAYS.  He wants me to praise Him always because He is so good.  1 Thessalonians 5:18 offers me another reason to praise Him always and in all circumstances...this is His will for me!!  I am honored that He chooses my circumstances; I am honored because the circumstances He chooses for me will bring Him the most glory!  I count it all joy and praise that He is choosing to use me, even in my brokenness and crankiness, and, not only that, but He wants to help me overcome my brokenness and crankiness.  That makes my heart smile.  My Jesus not only loves me as I am, but wants to help me overcome ALL my weaknesses!  I love Him!  I can never rely on my spouse for all my needs even when he is here because he is human, too.  If I am doing that, my needs will never be met. Instead, I take them to the Lover of my soul and offer up all the broken and ugly pieces of who I am as an offering of praise and He honors even that.  Even my weak offering, He honors, makes whole, and uses for His glory!!

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

2 Kids and Counting

For those of you who have read my previous blogs, you know my husband and I committed our family on a journey of faith when we decided that I would quit my job as a high school teacher of six years and stay at home to raise our young daughter.  We chose to obey God's leading, trusting Him to provide for our every need, especially when I made more money than my husband at the time and the numbers on paper did not even hint that we would financially survive the drastic pay cut.  But we serve a BIG God...One Who knows our every need, comforts our every scrape and hurt, and Who picks us up when we fall down.  Ultimately, when we committed to one income, we knew we were in for the ride of our lives.  No longer did we falsely believe we were steering our own ship, but letting go of that income also meant letting go of what little control we thought we had over our lives.  We knew that God would provide (and He has provided abundantly more than we ever thought or imagined); conversely, we also knew that Satan would begin attacking our family and our steps to raise Godly children in a Godly home. The call was clear, though, and we knew that was God's will for our family, so we stepped out and trusted Him to lead us where He was calling us.

A beautiful thing happens when we obey the Lord.  We experience a peace like no other and FREEDOM!!  We also expose ourselves to God's work in our lives, His blessings, His provision, and His faithfulness, especially when the future is unclear and the road is rocky.  Additionally, obeying the Lord in one area allows us to hear Him more clearly the next time He asks us to follow Him.  Every time we obey Him, the closer we walk with Him and the more alert our spiritual ears become the next time He speaks to us.  On the other hand, the more we disobey God and ignore His voice, the fainter and fainter His voice becomes in our lives, until our hearts are hardened and we no longer hear His calling.  My husband and I want to live a life that is pleasing to the Lord.  God tells us in Hebrews 11:6 that "without faith, it is impossible to please God."  We still disobey because we are sinful and not perfect, but our goal and desire is to please Him, and that requires faith.

To that end, we have been somewhat blindsided by God in His next call on our lives.  I didn't see it coming, and my husband certainly didn't see it coming when I shared it with him one night after work.   When we got married, my husband, Josh, and I talked about our plans for our family.  We would buy a house in the county where we both worked, remodel it, adopt a dog, be married for two years, then begin expanding our family...on to the American dream, right?  We planned on having two biological children, then adopting children.  That was what we wanted and agreed on without seeking God's opinion and plans for our lives.  Well, God allowed our plan to move along as scripted until we had our first child.  That was when the Lord started knocking on my heart, revamping my desires, and calling me to stay at home...whoa, Lord, that was nowhere on my radar.  I was going to continue working and our children would go to public school.  But, we found ourselves at a crossroads with a clear calling and knocking that we could not deny.  Since then, we have found ourselves at a few more significant crossroads where we have a choice to obey our Savior's voice or reject it, such as the one at which we found ourselves last month.  

During the second half of our last pregnancy, the Lord started gently knocking on my heart, gently stirring my desires until my desire would match His.  I began looking into natural child birth (not what the Lord was calling me to) and what that entailed.  I guess it was a little late to start looking into natural child birth, since I was over half way through my pregnancy, but natural child birth intrigued me, so I began looking up articles on the subject and reading other women's stories.  While I scrolled through the internet late at night when I should have been asleep, reading various articles on how to give birth medicine-free, I came across an article or two about a Christ-following families who allowed God, the center of their families, to be the One to control the number of children they had.  They decided to give up contraceptives and completely trust the Lord to provide the right number of children for them and the means they would need to support that family.  That was the first knock on my heart.  Later, God would subtly nudge me to other people and families who shared the belief and confidence that God would provide for them, even down to the number of children they birthed.  Finally, all the articles and people I talked to came to a head when I felt a sure calling that God was asking me and my family to live the same way, with the same faith that He would decide how many children we have and He would provide for each of their needs.  The knock was so loud in my heart that I couldn't deny it any more.  I had a choice: I could either ignore God's clear calling or I could tell my husband and ask him to pray about it and through it with me.  I chose the latter.

It was quite a comical scene when I told my husband the desire that God had laid on my heart to let go of the one area I still felt like I had control over and allow Him to be the ultimate decision maker for the number of children we would birth.  It floored my husband.  If the men in your life are anything like my man, he likes to be prepped before entering a conversation like the one I started with him that night.  However, I didn't prep him with details beforehand--I had only told him I wanted to talk with him about something God had laid on my heart and ask him to pray with me about it.  He politely said ok and asked nothing else about it until he got home and the kids were in bed.  When I told him that I felt like God was leading us to give up contraceptives and trust the Lord wholeheartedly in that area, he was floored.  He was so taken aback because he didn't see it coming, either.  He said something very similar to, "Wait.  That is not what we agreed on.  We agreed to birth two children, then adopt more."  I told him that I knew I had agreed to that and that I did not know God was going to ask us to take this step, either.  We both had reservations.  Of course, mine were self-centered...I currently have ONE pair of pants that fit me.  I don't really like what pregnancy does to my body; I am ready to get fit again. And then there's money.  How will we afford more children?  Then the Lord gently reminded me that my husband and I can't even afford the two children we have now.  The Lord provides every cent we have, every article of food and clothing we own, both of our vehicles, and everything else we have.  If we trusted Him to provide for us with two children, why is it difficult to trust Him to provide for us with more kids?

In the book of Matthew, when the Sadducees tried to trick Jesus about marriage at the resurrection, Jesus answered them, "you know neither the Scriptures nor the power of God" (Matthew 22:29).  If we knew the Scriptures and His power when we trusted Him to provide for our needs with one child and then two children, then His promises and ability remain true no matter how many children we have.  He does not change, nor do His promises.  His Word and character were true when the Bible was written and they are true today.  He is the same God...God Almighty, the Owner of the cattle on a thousand hills (Psalm 50:10).  1 Corinthians 6:19-20 reminds me that I am not my own.  My body does not belong to me, so why should I try to control it myself?  Why not allow God to control it, if I believe He is Who He says He is and that He can do what He says He will do?  1 Corinthians continues to state that I should "honor God with my body."  Therefore, if I want to honor God with my body, then I will submit it to Him for His glory, whatever that may be.  So, after praying about this decision and seeking God's will for our family, my husband and I have decided to let go and let God lead us and control the number of children we have.  Children are such a blessing...a HUGE responsibility, but a HUGE blessing!  Likewise, obedience and submission are also HUGE blessings and responsibilities, but even when we don't see the next step or past the next step into the future, we know Who holds our future and we can choose to trust in Him.  As we take steps of obedience in faith, we experience His perfect peace in the midst of the storm.  Our God is good and He is our ultimate Provider.  Nothing we have is from ourselves or through our own efforts. 

So please partner with us in prayer as we follow the Lord's leading in this next step He has called our family to take.  It is a scary one for me, but we are trusting in the Lord's provision.  He is Jehovah Jirah!!