Thursday, February 25, 2016

More than enough

When does it become more than enough for you? 

More than enough Money?  Power?  Love?  Food?  Drink?  Other vises?  Shopping?  Spending?  Serving others above yourself? 

How do we look outside ourselves to help and love on others and forsake those things that could easily be placed aside to show our families and our friends how important following Jesus is? 

It's not sitting in a church or attending church for that matter.  You can sit in church and not get anything out of it except check it of your list of things to do.  Maybe it's your social time of the week and it's important in that area of your life, great. 

Let me share some of our story with you.  Just in case you wondered who we are.  I have worked in ministry many years, volunteer or paid.  Steve as well.  Our last church job, the Lord called us out to go bring in the one sheep that got away.  Here's the scripture that backs that.

Luke 15New King James Version (NKJV)

The Parable of the Lost Sheep

15 Then all the tax collectors and the sinners drew near to Him to hear Him. And the Pharisees and scribes complained, saying, “This Man receives sinners and eats with them.” So He spoke this parable to them, saying:
“What man of you, having a hundred sheep, if he loses one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness, and go after the one which is lost until he finds it? And when he has found it, he lays it on his shoulders, rejoicing. And when he comes home, he calls together his friends and neighbors, saying to them, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep which was lost!’ I say to you that likewise there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine just persons who need no repentance.
What man among you with a hundred sheep, losing one, would not leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness and go after the missing one till he found it? And when he found it, would he not joyfully take it on his shoulders and then, when he got home, call together his friends and neighbours? “Rejoice with me,” he would say “I have found my sheep that was lost. ~ Luke 15:4-6:

The Parable of the Lost Son

11 Then He said: “A certain man had two sons. 12 And the younger of them said to his father, ‘Father, give me the portion of goods that falls to me.’ So he divided to them his livelihood. 13 And not many days after, the younger son gathered all together, journeyed to a far country, and there wasted his possessions with prodigal living. 14 But when he had spent all, there arose a severe famine in that land, and he began to be in want. 15 Then he went and joined himself to a citizen of that country, and he sent him into his fields to feed swine. 16 And he would gladly have filled his stomach with the pods that the swine ate, and no one gave him anything.
17 “But when he came to himself, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired servants have bread enough and to spare, and I perish with hunger! 18 I will arise and go to my father, and will say to him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you, 19 and I am no longer worthy to be called your son. Make me like one of your hired servants.”’
20 “And he arose and came to his father. But when he was still a great way off, his father saw him and had compassion, and ran and fell on his neck and kissed him. 21 And the son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and in your sight, and am no longer worthy to be called your son.’
22 “But the father said to his servants, ‘Bring[b] out the best robe and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand and sandals on his feet. 23 And bring the fatted calf here and kill it, and let us eat and be merry; 24 for this my son was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’ And they began to be merry.
25 “Now his older son was in the field. And as he came and drew near to the house, he heard music and dancing. 26 So he called one of the servants and asked what these things meant. 27 And he said to him, ‘Your brother has come, and because he has received him safe and sound, your father has killed the fatted calf.’
28 “But he was angry and would not go in. Therefore his father came out and pleaded with him. 29 So he answered and said to his father, ‘Lo, these many years I have been serving you; I never transgressed your commandment at any time; and yet you never gave me a young goat, that I might make merry with my friends. 30 But as soon as this son of yours came, who has devoured your livelihood with harlots, you killed the fatted calf for him.’
31 “And he said to him, ‘Son, you are always with me, and all that I have is yours. 32 It was right that we should make merry and be glad, for your brother was dead and is alive again, and was lost and is found.’”

 : Well, that lost sheep was a man who fathered me, I met him only about 5 times in my life and had in my mind that he was "my knight in shining armor".  I never expected the Lord to shut our ministry down to go find this man and bring him into the fold.  But one morning, early Sunday at work, I was praying, I had never seen demons at the windows before, but this day I saw them salivating and gnashing at the windows and I asked the Lord why, He said, because I am no longer welcomed here." I said, but Lord, you called us out 9 months ago and we have done all that you asked".  He said " yes you have, you have tried to teach them to Stand on My Word and Obey me, but I am not welcome in this place any longer."  I began to weep for those I had taught, those that I watched give their hearts to Jesus, those adults that laid their lives down and gave it all for teaching His Word.  I wept uncontrollably for a long time".  It was time to tell them, it was time to confess that the Lord called us out to go save the one sheep. My heart was so burdened by the choice.  For five years we had been walking with God in teaching the children how to love him, how to worship, how to serve him in big ways.  Every year the Lord gave me a word or words to teach them that year.  First year was obedience, the last was stand on My Word and obey me.  I can not recall the middle ones, but every year those lessons we taught were focused on the Word of the Lord.  The Lord blessed us with so many great leaders and hearts for Him.  I got to see what God does when we walk with Him and not against Him. 

My God!:
After we went to get the one that tried to get away, we found ourselves in some great teaching with some wonderful people of the Lord.  We went to the Bay of the Holy Spirit Revival many times, we went through a healing class and learned how to teach it and we grew in so many ways.  We felt like we could do anything and then, it came.  Working at a campground in Texas, we had a manager who loved to pit one against the other in subtle ways and in ways you had to really look out for.  It took just two months and we had to leave.  We could not deal with the pitting anymore.  So we ended up in Bryan TX.  In a park that didn't seem bad until they began to change out the electric boxes and the water.  We thought it was our trailer and began to wonder if we could settle down in this area.  We ended up walking out of God's will for us, bought a house we could not afford while making $9 an hour each and a measly retirement but we did.  For 3 1/2 years we pushed through.  I tried my hand at a home daycare, but every month we go further behind.  Steve got his old job back a year after we got the house, I began to work at the local university and we began a 2 year dig to get out of the hole we crawled into.  We really began earnestly to pray again for God's hand in our lives.  We had felt WE walked away from Him.  He was there the whole time!  He was there in our jobs! He was there in our finances! He was there when we ministered to co-workers.  At the university, I had a parent who's daughter committed suicide the year before and it had been an extremely rough year for them, she was from India and I began to hug her and pray over her, for her, listen to her and love on her.  I had another co-worker she was a young college student, dealing with her brother's suicide from 2 years prior and we talked at great lengths about her feelings and how her Christmas would be that year.  We talked a lot about many things.  It was hard.  But I believe that God intervened when He placed us in good jobs for ministry.  It wasn't the plan we had at anytime, but it was the plan He had. 
  He was there in our walk! 
Every day we would look out at the travel trailer and say, man we miss the campground ministry.  We miss the life we had.  Lord, we are thankful for all you have given us and showed us but we really miss that life.  In December of 2014, the Lord began to speak louder.  He called us back into this ministry, mission field.  In January of 2015, we began to experience great shake ups in our marriage, in our work, in every aspect of life.  We put the house on the market at the end of January.  In one month, we had an offer for the asking price.  We actually had 3 put two fell through.  We had given notice for our jobs, that was tough.  So tough.  We have great friends we had made and I loved my school parents and children, it was hard to face.  The ups and downs, the travels we made.  The lives we touched and the love we have for the Lord. 

Our rewards have been great!  We ended up in Beaver UT to work in a KOA.  We did things on our "bucket list" that we would have not done for years.  We saw the Grand Canyon, Bryce and Zion, we went through UT, from South to North.  We got to see my mom and the kids.  We went to Phoenix AZ for a school for a week and got to see the desert, it was incredible how this land changes from sea to shining sea.  From mountain to mountains, it does not look the same.

"Some people spend their lives sacrificing themselves for other people, with the only result that the people for whom the sacrifice is made become more and more selfish. Whenever the Holy Ghost inspires the sacrifice, it is the sacrifice of ourselves for Jesus’ sake, and that never blights, but always blesses. Half the heartbreaks and difficulties which some of us have hurried ourselves into would have been prevented if we had only dared to obey God in the power of the Spirit." --Oswald Chambers, from Biblical Ethics.
We loved being able to pray with others while we worked.  We have loved hearing peoples travel or life stories.  The Lord always brings them around. 
New week & *no fears* because fears are just the bad stories we tell ourselves. *And your Father is far bigger than your fears.*  This is why "I have set the Lord always before me. Because He is at my right hand I will not be shaken" Psalm 16:8. He pulls you right close & whispers it, "Do Not Be Afraid." He knows how hard things are. And He knows how *faithful He will be.*  need to fear any day of the year: Do Not Be A:
We are celebrating our one year on the road again and it's been a faith grower, mind shifter, heart rendering, love offering, faith building, learning to become fully relied on Jesus and stretches your mind and learning to keep your peace when it feels like you can't, also learning to stay within your budget even when it seems impossible. God supplies all our needs according to His riches and glory.

It's really time to see what God does in your life don't you think?  What are two things He has done for you so far this year?  Can you find 10 things you are grateful for?  Can you name one thing you can do for Him?  Can you name more than that?  Let me know what you think?
We believe that faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see —and we have assurance that You will make us strong and courageous to “lay down every dead thing we are still holding on to, to dismount from our dead horses. We may not be fearless but we will be *strong* and *courageous* and *faithful* because our *faith in You* is greater than the fears in us.":  


Over the river...

Can it be, really?  Over a year since I posted.  Wow!  Does not seem like the time flew.  It seemed like we were just in Alabama not long ag...