Thursday, July 16, 2009

Quotes of the Day

“Let me say I am here,
(1) By God’s appointment
(2) In His keeping
(3) Under His training
(4) For His time.” -A.Murray

“God’s Word influences my perspective. My perspective influences how I respond. My response influences the outcome of the situation 100% of the time." -Dr. Nichols

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Moses and His Walkie-Talkie

On Sunday, Stephen and I got to go sailing with our friends, David and Kayla. It was perfect and beautiful Southern California day...not too hot...not too cold. There is something very relaxing about drifting in a boat. My husband's dream is to someday get a sail boat and sail around the world. I'm not sure if my up for that, but I definitely would not mind another day like the one we had.

On another note, I had a pretty good day at work today! I especially enjoyed this cute article that I found in one of the publications that our organization sends out each month. The title was:
Moses and His Walkie-Talkie
Nine year old Kyle was asked by his mother what he had learned at Sunday school.

"Well, Mom, our teacher told us how God sent Moses behind enemy lines on a rescue mission to lead the Israelites out of Egypt. When he got to the Red Sea, he and his engineers build a pontoon bridge and the people walked across safely. Then he used his walkie-talkie to radio headquarters for reinforcements. They sent bombers to blow up the bridge and all the Israelites were saved."

"Now, Kyle, is that really what your teacher taught you?" his mother asked.

"Well, no. But if I told it the way the teacher did, you'd never believe it!"

I thought that story was so cute! I used to love being a nanny to just listen to the things little kids would come up with.
I'm tempted to just end this blog post now, but I have a prayer request that is on my mind. I guess it wouldn't hurt to write it out. Well, Stephen submitted his mission board application today! This is a pretty huge leap of faith for us. We're both very excited about it and are eager to see what God will do next. Please pray that we put our trust firmly in the Lord and not give in to the whims and worries of our individual "what ifs?" I believe God specifically pointed out this verse for me today. It's from the paraphrase, The Message, in Matthew 6:30:
If God gives such attention to the appearance of wildflowers—most of which are never even seen—don't you think he'll attend to you, take pride in you, do his best for you? What I'm trying to do here is to get you to relax, to not be so preoccupied with getting, so you can respond to God's giving. People who don't know God and the way he works fuss over these things, but you know both God and how he works. Steep your life in God-reality, God-initiative, God-provisions. Don't worry about missing out. You'll find all your everyday human concerns will be met.
Thank you!

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Day by Day

...and with each passing moment, Strength I find, to meet my trials here; Trusting in my Father’s wise bestowment, I’ve no cause for worry or for fear. He Whose heart is kind beyond all measure Gives unto each day what He deems best—Lovingly, its part of pain and pleasure, Mingling toil with peace and rest..."

This old hymn just came to mind as I began to blog. It actually is bringing back memories of our home being filled with the music as my sister, Serena, used to play it out on the piano. There is so much truth in that stanza and it applies directly to where I'm at right now. "He Whose heart is kind beyond all measure Gives unto each day what He deems best," that's an awesome reminder. God has been teaching me through the book, Loving God with All Your Mind, that He already foreknew everything that was going to happen to me today and that NOTHING is a mistake or accident. I used to scoff at the verse in Romans 8:28, "All things work together for good to those that love God, to those who are called according to His purpose." Much like the hymn above, I had heard this verse a thousand times and it had no true meaning for me personally. Well, one day recently something popped up that I did not plan for and did not see coming. I was hurt, frustrated, and angry and finally got a chance to plop open my book and lo and behold...Rom 8:28 was the topic of the next chapter I was going to read. The author began to say that we can actually use this verse to pray over different circumstances that come up throughout our days. Circumstance that my bring disappointment like I received, or a job loss, relational conflict, feelings of loneliness or whatever that unpleasant thing in our lives may be. I learned that I can take this verse and pray, "God, your Word says that all things work together for good -even this difficult situation________(fill in the blank)-, to those that love you -which I do!-, and to those who are called according to your purpose -which I am!-" This encouraged me and reminded me that everything that happens to me throughout each day has a divine purpose. The choice is then left up to me to deal with it all in my own strength or like the song trust in my Father's wise bestowment where there is no cause for worry or fear. There are many uncertainties coming up in our near future, but I feel like God is prepping my heart and teaching me valuable lessons now. I wonder how much different I would be if I lived like every person I "run into", every conversation I have, and every step I take was not an accident but rather God-designed. God, continue to work in my life on this issue...humble my heart and remove my self-centeredness and pride-I need you!

Thanks for letting me share! I've been pretty excited about that. ALSO...I wanted to share some July 4th pictures. Above is a picture of Stephen and I at our church's God and Country Celebration. It had been 3 years since I got to see my man in his dress blues. He was so handsome and I was proud to just be near him! It's been about 5 years since he's been out of the Marine Corps and it was an excitement for him to know that the uniform still fit. :) Hee hee. He's so adorable...I love that man with all of my heart. Ok back to July 4th weekend...I was pleasantly surprised to know that I had Friday, July 3rd off work! It had been a pretty intense week at work as it is the end of our fiscal year and just a busy time. I was exhausted and drained Thursday after work and when I got home, Stephen told me to go in the room to see what he had planned for the evening. So I walked down the hall and peeked into our bedroom and saw an empty suitcase on the bed! Woo Hoo! I LOVE getting away overnight. We stayed at a hotel near the harbor and it was so refreshing.

The next day we had our Bible Study and then on the 4th we had a BBQ with friends. The God and Country celebration makes me cry every time. Our church brings forward all active duty military men and women, the veterans, and the spouses of those whose loved ones are currently deployed, and honors them with a standing ovation while the song "You Raise Me Up" is sung to them. Tears! I always think about the sacrifice that they made and are making. They are my hero's! Stephen and I are excited about the idea of serving these men and women together. We are beginning the application process with the Navy and Mission Board and just ask prayer that God will continue to direct our steps into HIS will.

Here's a few more photos of Stephen and I at our BBQ, Me with Paisley, and Stephen and our friend David at the God and Country Celebration:

I can not believe how quickly this year is flying by! Stephen and I are really looking forward to a great summer vacation visiting his family in D.C. and S.C. We leave in August for 2 whole weeks! I'm so excited. :) Fall semester will begin again for me when we return. Stephen is ecstatic that he no longer has to register for any more classes. I have no idea what that feels like, maybe in 7 years I too will know that joy. :) The title of this blog was Day by Day though, right? One step at a time, Julie, one step at a time.