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Busy Busy Busy

Speak the Truth:

Philippians 2:14-15  Do all things without grumbling or questioning, that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world,

Colossians 3:17 And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

Psalm 118:24 This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.

Talk the Talk:

How busy are you?  Many of you just laughed at this as your daily, weekly, or monthly schedule blurred through your mind.  As for me, my calendar is chalk full.  There is no space to add anything, except very early mornings, and very late evenings (where you can usually find me mindless on my couch trying to catch my breath from the day.)  I know I am not the only one.  I talk with other women that are in the same boat as me all the time.  Life is hectic, and we get run down.

I think it is important to ask yourself… Why am I so busy?  For me, I have 3 girls who are very active and social.  I also have a job, a home to take care of, groceries to buy, etc.  You get the idea.  I have read books about boundaries and devotionals about how to say no, and they have given me great advice.  I really have learned to say no to so many things.  I have learned to change expectations of me and my family, and I have learned how to give myself grace. This still does not keep my family from being busy.  I have come to accept that this is the stage of life that I am in.

I have decided I may not be able to change my schedule anymore, but I can change my attitude about my schedule.  I would find myself saying…  I HAVE to go to work, then I HAVE to pick up the girls, then I HAVE to take them to dance, then I HAVE to make dinner, etc. etc. etc.  Just typing that sounds so burdensome.  It’s time to change my mindset.  I no longer HAVE to do anything…..  Think about this with me.

1. I GET to go to work. (God has provided me with a job in order to help support my family financially.)

2. I GET to pick up the girls from school.  (There are so many parents that don’t have the opportunity to pick up their children from school, due to sickness, work, or for whatever reason.)

3. I GET to take my kids to dance. (I am fortunate enough to be able to provide opportunities for my kids that others can only dream of.)

4. I GET to make (or get)  dinner for my family. (I have 3 beautiful girls that are alive and healthy, and I get to help nourish them, spend time with them, show them I love them.)

Please know that I am thankful for the above; however, your list might look totally different.

Walk the Walk:

When I get to do something, it is a privilege; when I have to do something, it is a burden.  Remember anything we do, we make the choice to do it, so we need to learn to appreciate it. Let me encourage you, 1.  Slow down in whatever way you can .  Say no to some things, so you can enjoy the little things.  2. Then when you can’t slow down anymore, change your attitude.  The Bible says, Do all things without grumbling or disputing. Philipians 2:14.  When we change our I HAVE to, to I GET to, it feels so energizing.  3.  Then finally, schedule time for rest and don’t apologize for it.  Put it on your calendar and label it.  Protect it at all cost.  We need to find time to rest, just as Jesus did to prepare ourselves mentally and physically for the rigors of life.

When we change our attitude, even in the midst of busyness and tiredness, others will notice.  It is an opportunity to show others that we live differently, even though our schedules may be the same. We don’t go through our day alone. He gives us the energy and strength we need to accomplish everything, and to have a great attitude while we do it.

 
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Posted by on October 22, 2014 in Attitude, Health and Wellness

 

Dear _______,

Speak the Truth:

“The Lord is not slow to fulfill His promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.”  2 Peter 3:9 (ESV)

Talk the Talk:

I have a loved one that I have been praying salvation for for decades now.  In my heart, I believe that one day they will come to choose to fully surrender to Christ.   One day….

Many days I’m simply left to pray.  I pray that God will show Himself in their life through someone at work, a song, a billboard, a book, anything or anywhere.   I ask Him to protect them from satan and not allow him to distort any of God’s truth that has already been shown to them.  I pray that despite the sin they see in my life, they will witness God’s forgiveness and grace manifested, larger than any sin.  I ache for them to not only have the assurance of knowing they will never be separated from their Creator for all of eternity, but also for them to fully know His deep love and healing of their brokenness while living this life.

While I know that God’s timing is perfect, sometimes the waiting is so hard, and sometimes my thoughts betray that I don’t believe in His timing as much as I’d like to believe I do.  I distinctly remember being honest with the Lord one day and lamenting how I know He doesn’t wish that any would perish and that many have been praying for this person for so long.  Essentially, I was asking God what the hold-up was.  I also mentioned to Him that if He could show Himself in a miraculous way like He did to Paul (see Acts 9), then surely He could do something to really grab my loved one’s attention in a way that would bring them to a place of choosing repentance.   I felt like God gently spoke into my heart and said, “What if you’re not finished learning what you need to learn as the loved one of an unbeliever?”  Whoa.  I had never once considered their delay could be because He was using this time to teach and refine me.  I begged the Lord to keep me focused and not let one day be wasted due to my sin and negligence.

Walk the Walk:

Do you have a parent, spouse, sibling, child, or best friend like mine?  While there’s no way for us to know when those we love may accept Christ fully into their lives, we cannot lose hope sisters. This weekend I heard a pastor, Dr. Stuart Scott, speak and remind the audience of the one criminal on the cross (see Luke 23:32-43) that acknowledged Jesus as Savior.   Even if they’re on a cross, until they quit breathing, there’s still hope.   Maybe your prayers have been ascending for them for 2, 19, 37, or __ years, don’t stop pressing on!  I’m right there with you.

In the meantime, don’t forget to thank God for every time they learn something new or hear a testimony about Jesus.  Also, be sure to thank Him for being so patient with them, and with you, if you happen to be like me and break down and question what He’s doing from time to time.

Merciful God, we don’t deserve You, but we’re so grateful You want us anyway.  May we live lives that glorify You and draw others to Your beautiful redemption.

 

 

Faith and Works

Speak the Truth

For as the body apart from the spirit is dead, so also faith apart from works is dead. James 2:26

Talk the Talk

How do you know if I have a saving faith in Jesus Christ? James contends that you should be able to know my faith through my works. Here is the whole section from James 2:14-26:

What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can that faith save him? If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacking in daily food, and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and filled,” without giving them the things needed for the body, what good is that? So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead. But someone will say, “You have faith and I have works.” Show me your faith apart from your works, and I will show you my faith by my works. You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe—and shudder! Do you want to be shown, you foolish person, that faith apart from works is useless? Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered up his son Isaac on the altar? You see that faith was active along with his works, and faith was completed by his works; and the Scripture was fulfilled that says, “Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness”—and he was called a friend of God. You see that a person is justified by works and not by faith alone. And in the same way was not also Rahab the prostitute justified by works when she received the messengers and sent them out by another way? For as the body apart from the spirit is dead, so also faith apart from works is dead.

I believe that the key to this passage and our memory verse is actually found in verse 19: “Even the demons believe – and shudder!” You see believing that Jesus is who He says He is should change us. The process of sanctification – the act or process of being made or becoming holy – takes our entire lives. From the moment we believe Jesus died on the cross and rose from the grave and then confess that belief with our mouths, sanctification begins. It is not perfected until we cross over into our afterlife with Christ in Heaven. We believe without seeing by seeking God, meeting Him, knowing Him and learning. We allow the Holy Spirit to refine us, change us. All of these things without seeing with our physical eyes.

Demons have it rough. They know Jesus is who He claims to be and they chose the other team. What blindness and folly! They have placed their faith in a losing venture. Their works are anti-God. They follow their captain’s game plan and he does lose the war in the end.

Why would I want my faith to look like that of the demons? Why would I want my faith to just be faith and have nothing come of it – no fruit? That would also be more than a little foolish. Works cannot save us but they can be evidence that we are different, changed.

Walk the Walk

Pastor Darren is preaching a series of sermons on being different. Yesterday’s sermon was on having a Different Hope. You see, we should not live in fear of the “what if”. No, we must live in the peace of “what is”. So let me ask you this: Are you different? May your faith be strengthened this day as you boldly approach the throne of grace. Ask the Lord to show you where your faith needs to take you to action. If you need ideas, we can dig up a few :)

 

Please pray – 3 house showings in the next 24 hours…

Amanda Williams:

Things are moving right along with the Kite move….boxes, boxes and more boxes;) Please join us in praying for this family as they finish up packing in the next two days! God continues to reveal Himself every day! If you haven’t signed up to support them prayerfully or financially, I encourage you to do so. You don’t want to miss God’s show!

Originally posted on kitefamilyonmission:

We planned to give a full update today on the completion of our 100 day journey but it might be a bit early for the final story.  We already had one house showing scheduled for Saturday.  Within the last day there has been two more showings scheduled.  We are all packing up boxes today and about 1PM we received a message saying someone would like to see the house between 2 and 4.  So…  please pray.  Seems like God is doing something.  That means our house will be shown three times within a 24 hour period – the final full weekend we have in Florida.  If nothing else, He got us hopping and cleaning during this last hour.  We love each of you and love our God that has called us to be on this journey together.  He is so good…

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Posted by on October 17, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

Chocolate Chip Cookies and Servanthood

 

Speak the Truth:

John 20:21 (ESV)

21 Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, even so I am sending you.”

Talk the Talk:

Many of you have been following the Kite Family on mission story here on Women at the Well. I just needed to add a little bit of history, as well as an encouraging send off for a family near and dear to my heart!

I have grown up at FBC Ocala. The summer after 6th grade while attending my first summer youth camp there was this guy named Kevin Kite who was volunteering his time to hang out with the youth. One day he made a plate of chocolate chip cookies and brought them to share with the girls in my room. That’s my first memory of Kevin.

He went to college, got married, went to seminary, started having kids, and then became mission pastor at FBC. I grew up, went to college, got a job, and started taking lots of mission trips. So my life has been intersecting with the entire Kite family in various ways over the past few years. It has been a privilege to be part of their journey. Serving locally and internationally with the Kite family, I have had a front row seat to this journey that has now led them to GO to Canada in less than one week.

It’s funny, way back at that summer youth camp, I never would have dreamed I would one day be leading youth with 3 of Kevin’s kiddos. I’ve had 2 in Sunday School and all 3 on various youth trips and local mission projects. Life does tend to come full circle. While they have been busy packing and saying goodbyes, I had the chance to make some special chocolate chip cookies for the 4th of his kiddos this past weekend.

Walk the Walk:

So, this isn’t about chocolate chip cookies. But it is about memories and never knowing how God will use people in our lives and situations to grow us into better servants for Him. People you never expected to have an impact on you may very well turn out to be some of your greatest cheerleaders.

I am so proud of the Kite family and their willingness to be sent. From Kevin and Jeanna all the way down to their 3.5 year old, all 7 family members have a special call to Go! The point of this blog is that they are being obedient to carry out the command found in Psalm 96:3 (ESV) “Declare his glory among the nations, his marvelous works among all the peoples!”

So, please join me in praying for them as they make final preparations and say good-byes. While this is an exciting time,  it has some hard times in the mix. But, I look forward to meeting saints in Heaven one day that are there because the Kite Family said, YES!

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Posted by on October 16, 2014 in Missions and Discipleship

 

Rejection

Speak the Truth:

Hebrews 12: Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, 2 looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.  3 Consider him who endured from sinners such hostility against himself, so that you may not grow weary or fainthearted.

Talk the Talk:

Rejection.  What an ugly word.  Webster definition says, “refuse to accept; to refuse to hear, receive or admit.”

It is safe to say that everyone has experienced rejection if they have lived long enough.  Rejection can come in all forms.  You may have experienced it from a parent, spouse, child, friend or co-worker.  ‘They’ say to be a writer or actor or model you need to be able to deal with rejection.  Develop a thick skin, they say.

When I have witnessed rejection in a close family member or friend, they tend to do what I do: withdraw.  Like a turtle in a shell, nobody can hurt me if I don’t stick my neck out.

Jesus dealt with rejection.  He turned the other cheek and continued on with the plan, all the way to the crucifixion. To me, what He experienced, is the ultimate rejection.  He was God in a body walking the Earth spreading the truth and the people screamed, “Crucify Him!”  Did He retreat?  No.  He hung  on the cross and ministered to two people, one who accepted Truth, the other who rejected it.  He made arrangements for His mother and asked forgiveness from the Father on our behalf.

Walk the Walk:

Truly, I want to be the turtle. I want to hide in my shell and lick my wounds. But….I am a follower of Christ. I am compelled to stick to His plan, and forgive. No grudges….No hate….Forgiveness. Don’t want to. Nope. Completely contrary to who I am, but completely characteristic of who He is. The narrow path is one paved with forgiveness.

Pray for me because without Jesus, I could not do this.

What about you?  Is there a person or persons in your life that rejected you?  Do you need to forgive them?

 

Matthew 6:9-13English Standard Version (ESV)

9 Pray then like this:

“Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name.[a]
10 Your kingdom come,
your will be done,[b]
on earth as it is in heaven.
11 Give us this day our daily bread,[c]
12 and forgive us our debts,
as we also have forgiven our debtors.
13 And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.[d]

 

 
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Posted by on October 15, 2014 in Attitude, Health and Wellness

 

Strive for Total Dependence

Written by Guest Blogger: Lori Banitt

De.pen.dent–Relying on another for support

De.pend–To place reliance or trust

Speak The Truth…

Trust in The Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding.
Proverbs 3:5

Talk The Talk…

Recently I had the pleasure of watching my little four legged, furry grand-puppy for my beautiful daughter and her sweet husband to get away to celebrate their first wedding anniversary. No big deal…how hard can it be…we’ve taken care of Miss Sadie Mae many times since she’s joined our family. Well, it actually turned out to be very different this time. All of the goodbyes were said and everything was going well until us grandparents went to settle down for the night with our little visitor. Sadie became sick during the night and then again in the morning several times, so much that I went into mommy mode and called her parents to seek their advice about a visit to the vet. Of course being the great parents that they are…a call was made and a visit was scheduled.

The visit to the Vet confirmed that Sadie was dehydrated from her illness and needed some IV fluids, a bland diet and plenty of rest and TLC. The weekend was filled with around the clock care and protection for this little puppy who was completely depending on her grandparents…without us I can’t imagine what would have happened. Sadie couldn’t take care of herself; she reminded me of our children when they were small, she looked to us to take care of her, she needed us for everything.

Fast forward a few days later…me driving down the road listening to Christian radio and talking to God…thanking him for my family and even Miss Sadie Mae feeling better….when the thought of Dependence came rushing over me. God truly wants us to depend on Him and His Word; He wants us to lean on Him for our every need and trust in Him (Proverbs 3:5) with our life and the lives of our loved ones. How hard could that be…trusting and depending on God for everything? I think we all want to surrender and be dependent on God, but for many human reasons we struggle with total dependence. I’m pretty sure that’s why God caught my attention during my drive…reminding me to depend on Him as Sadie Mae had depended on me for everything! I’m writing this to encourage myself and others to strive for total dependence on the one who created us and desires for us to trust Him with everything!!

Walk the Walk….

Are you up to the challenge? Pray with me…Dear Heavenly Father I truly desire to be totally dependent on you, trusting you with every aspect of my life and the lives of my loved ones. Please help me as I struggle within my human-flesh covered body, holding on to so many things, old baggage, insecurities and fears. Remind me daily that my dependence should be in you alone Lord! In Jesus Christ name I pray Amen!

 

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Angela Thomas

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