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Friday, August 29, 2014

Jump ALL in!

I am currently at the Double conference with our Revolution church staff and I have learned something new about each of them. I have measured where we are as a church by the messages Perry has been preaching and I am honestly blown away. Our vision has been pumped into my brain since before we launched and the language and heartbeat of our church is service. We create opportunities for others to flesh that out and because of that we are growing. This trip has been a success for sure. Last night we wanted to go swimming in our indoor pool but because they were remodeling it the front desk offered to take us to the hotel across the street to swim in their indoor pool. We waited on the shuttle to arrive and then headed over there. As we were walking in the guys were talking about getting into the jacuzzi because of their sore muscles and sore necks. We walk in and the lady at the front desk proceeds to tell us that their pool is also under construction. We laughed and walked back outside so we could catch the shuttle back to our hotel to use the outdoor pool. We were all hesitant to jump in because of the temperature. We all stood there waiting to see who was going to go first and so it happened. I took my Flip flops off took a deep breathe decided that bravery was my best yes and I just jumped all the way in.  It was so cool and refreshing!! After I jumped the others (chickens) decided to follow me. 

As I laid in the bed last night I thought about all the truth I had heard throughout the day as well as what I have heard today and the way we view our churches and the communities that surround our churches are a lot like the pool situation. We build up this expectation of how "the church" is to look. We want others to accommodate and present other opportunities without any hiccups along the way. When we arrived back from where we had started last night and I jumped in I was immediately glad we swam there. The water was cool and it was lit up and the sky was beautiful! It increased my courage, pushed me out as a leader and it called the ones out of the pool to jump with little to no hesitation. That's what we as the church are called to do. We are all different and we believe different things on different topics but God will always be God and the cross & resurrection will never change. That truth alone should drive a passion that pushes us all to jump in & be ALL in no matter what season you are in or your church is in.  When I see others criticizing or tearing down their pastors I always ask do you support your pastor? More importantly do you pray for him? As a pastors wife I promise He needs it. Sleepless nights, endless text and phone calls and emails, continued passion for the people and on and on. He needs your prayers. One of the things I love about our church is the level of encouragement we receive. A card will roll in or someone will ask us to dinner and encourage us & it's always at the perfect time. Today ask yourself am I all in? If not figure out why then move forward. Perry said this "it's ok not to be ok but it's not ok to stay there".   The Kingdom of God is moving forward with or without us. That pool wasn't going anywhere. We could have chosen to just sit around it and enjoy the color or the view and yet never experience the fullness of it. God wants you to jump and go all in TO HIM first and then serve and love those around you.  

Thank you NewSpring church for your contagious smiles and serving with excellence. You inspire me. Thank you Perry Noble for dropping truth in a way that encourages in real and raw ways. You are one of favorite pastors. You have encouraged Richard and I from a distance and we are so thankful. To Revolution church next month is year number 3!! We are growing and hundreds of families are being fed because of your generosity. Two schools that are often neglected are feeling refreshed because you have chosen to love like Jesus. I love you with my whole heart and the best is yet to come! I'm dreaming BIG! 

Saturday, August 16, 2014

God wants the raw,unfiltered & broken you!

Today I get on a cruise ship with my husband and our girls. We have never cruised before and the excitement and a hint of nerves are present in all of us. I know that God has something in store for us this week and I am most excited about unplugging from social media so I can fully listen to Jesus and also be fully present with my sweet family.  This morning as I got up and began to pray and think about all the things that I had left back at home either work related, ministry related, dirty dishes or things I need to do when I return I could feel the tension rising up in my neck.   I began to switch those thoughts with praise towards my Creator and something happened. I suddenly couldn't remember what it was I was trying to remember in the first place. Now I do have undiagnosed ADHD haha but it was different. It was as if God was waiting in the corner of that first thought to pull me back into His loving embrace just so He could whisper "rest, laugh and just enjoy Me".  I sat down at my friends table and started to sip my coffee and I read this beautiful verse 

"One thing I ask of the Lord, this is what I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord and to seek him in his temple."
—Psalm 27:4

To gaze on something means; to fix the eyes in a steady intent look often with eagerness or studious attention (Webster) 

When was the last time you fixed your eyes and heart fully on Jesus? Maybe you are there now and the intensity has you excited for what's to come, or maybe you are in a posture of surrender because you don't know what step to take next.  I have been in both of those places and the beauty of it is this,  it doesn't really matter why you are staring just keep staring. God said "seek Me and you will find Me when you seek me with your WHOLE heart".  We often need answers to our prayers, our dreams to come true,  our husbands  to fully follow the Lord, we desire deep and longing friendships along with so many more questions and yet our desperation often leads to frustration rather than Gods presence which leads us to completion.   We have to move from running to Him with our problems to gazing our eyes on Him & locking our heart to His heart no matter what comes out of it.  We often measure Gods faithfulness by the outcome of our prayers and perceived success but God just wants us.  He wants our raw, unfiltered & broken pieces. 

Today feel Gods pull and know that whatever you are moving away from doesn't compare to where you are headed. This Afternoon as I sail away from that dock I know that God is going to meet me and take me to places I have never been with Him. God here I am I'm fixing my heart to gaze upon You! Let's cruise!!