Saturday, January 29, 2011


You know I would blog much more if I didn't have kids.  Seriously, kidding there...but forming a complete thought is often hard around here.  Still,  I love to share what is going on in my heart and life when I have the time.  God is always taking us someplace new.....our lives are a work in process and we must not give in or give up in the face of failure and discouragement.  

I have been studying the life of King Asa in 2 Chronicles 14-16.   In chapter 14, verse 2 we read that "Asa did what was good and right in the eyes of the Lord his God."   Asa was given the promise that God would be with him as long as he obeyed and followed God.  Chapter 15, verse 7 says, "But as for you, be strong and do not give up, for your work will be rewarded."  We are continually challenged to not give up in the work God has given us to do.  I believe the enemy uses discouragement and our failures to try to keep us from following through with what God has called us to do.  The enemy wants to distract us and keep us from finishing strong.  But God wants to restore us when we fail, but whether or not that happens, is up to us.  

2 Chronicles 15:17 says, "Asa's heart was fully committed to the Lord all his life."  Yet, in chapter 16, Asa has a failure.  He relied on man and not God.  Therefore, he would be at war from then on as a consequence of trusting in man more than God.  Asa then becomes angry when faced with his sin and he refuses to turn to the God who had been with him and given him victory in the face of his enemies.  He becomes sick and even then refuses to seek help from the Lord.  

As I was studying over this I began to discuss it with my husband.  Asa's heart was fully committed to the Lord, yet when he failed he became angry and refused to deal with his sin.  He never repented and therefore, he was never restored.  Was he disappointed in himself for messing up?  Was it pride keeping him from admitting his mistake and accepting forgiveness and restoration?  I wonder.

David, on the other hand, was a man after God's own heart.  He failed time and time again, but each time he repented and God restored him.   I want to face my sin and failures like David.  I can totally relate to him as an imperfect human with a desire to love God with all my heart, yet messing up more times than I can count.  Failure is a part of life, but it is not final.   God will restore us and redeem our mistakes, if we will humble ourselves and return to Him with a heart fully committed to seeking Him and obeying Him.   

Restoration.  It is good to be restored in the Lord.  Therefore, I will not give up.

Oh, there is so much more to dig deeper into what God is saying here......But little boys and LEGOs await.

Monday, January 24, 2011

A Faithful Friend Won't Give Up on You

He wakens me morning by morning, wakens my ear to listen like one being taught.

Because of the Sovereign Lord helps me, I will not be disgraced.  Therefore have I set my face like flint, and I know I will not be put to shame.  He who vindicates me is near.

It is the Sovereign Lord who helps me.

Let him who walks in the dark, who has no light, trust in the name of the Lord and rely on his God.
Isaiah 50: 4,7-10

God shows up in the most unexpected ways!  I love it when we blow it and still He pours out His unfailing love on us.  Grace.....we all  need it and we need to give it!

I have a precious friend who came to my rescue.  She saw that the enemy had laid a trap and I had fallen right in.   I failed the test.   This precious sister in Christ didn't give up on me and she didn't turn away from me.  She came to me and spoke the truth in LOVE.  No condemnation.  Just deep love for our Saviour and our relationship.

I hate it when I give the enemy even one inch.  That bugs me!  But good can come out of our mess ups!  I am here to testify.  That friend who came to my rescue saw me in my weakness.  She saw my mess and struggle, because I let her in.   We can put on the mask of perfection, pride and self-righteousness but we are isolating ourselves and setting ourselves up for defeat.   We must risk exposing our true selves and take off the mask of self-protection.  

So you have been hurt before?  You may be  hurt again, but when we choose to love and be real we can trust ourselves to God, and therefore the consequences of our exposure to Him.  My friend saw me in a fractured state, that was a risk.  She could have judged me or rejected me, but she didn't!  This precious friend allowed God's unconditional love to flow through her and pour over me.  Now that is what it's all about!  Her obedience ministered to me in ways I can't even put into words.  Healing was brought to my body, through her obedience and love.  Now that is women's ministry at it's best!!!  

Therefore, as God's chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.  Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another.  Forgive as the Lord forgave you.  And over all these virtues put on LOVE, which binds them all together in perfect unity.
Colossians 3: 12-14

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

A deep breath....and I will wait.

Just a moment here...and pondering how following God means being criticized by others and not understood, at times.  Still, we follow Him.  I have been there before and it hurt really bad the first time.  Now, I am older and I saw how God provided and cared for me the first time, so it doesn't hurt as bad this time.  Do I want to defend myself and explain?  Yes!  But I won't.  That's God job to look after me.

My life verse is Psalms 27:14, "Wait on the Lord. Take heart and be courageous, YES, Wait on the Lord."
As I new believer at 20 years of age, I did not realize how that verse would come to mean many things to me later in my life.  But it has been something I have held tightly to, over and over again.

If you are going to follow God you will have to have the courage to be different, and at times feel lonely.  But you are not alone.  No matter what it costs....follow Him and believe.  Wait on Him.  Be courageous.  Don't give up. Don't become discouraged.

With breathless anticipation....I wait!

Friday, January 14, 2011

Friday Night

Nothing big to share.  Chuck is in San Francisco with a mission team partnering with Epic Church.  Trip is going great!  I did my Friday night gig at my dad's restaurant in Headland....The Taco Shop...Your Seafood Stop.....I am NOT kidding:)  Great fish, shrimp and oysters at the Taco Shop.  I enjoy my little job and I love the people.
Just Turner and me tonight.  How odd it feels to just be me and ONE kiddo. It is WAY too quiet around here.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Believing God.....and learning to depend on others.

2011....I will believe God and remember what He has done.

This morning I was reading in My Utmost for His Highest.  The title of today's devotion is, " What My Obedience to God Costs Other People."  Now I have been using this devotional since college, so of course, I have read this one several times before.  God continues to reveal new things to me each time.  How cool!

"If we obey God, it will mean other people's plans are upset.  They will ridicule us as if to say, 'You call this Christianity?'"  Yep, been there recently...with family members.  I want other people to be happy with me, but realistically, I can't please God and men, too.  There are going to be times that others don't understand why I am doing what I am doing and they will not approve. What God has called me to do may costs others something.  But if I am in love with Jesus, I will obey Him.

Back to Utmost,  "A lack of progress in our spiritual life results when we try to bear all the costs ourselves.....Will we remain faithful in our obedience to God and be willing to suffer the humiliation of refusing to be independent?"  OUCH!  I am one who for years tried to do everything by myself and would not ask for help and rarely accepted help offered.  Stubborn and independent, and I am not sure if I saw it as weakness to not be able to get it all done by myself.  Probably, more the truth, is that I was afraid of being a burden to others.  I didn't want to be needy, but I was worn out and frustrated.

God has done MAJOR work on me in the past few years, thankfully.  Ok, I just admit it now....I'm needy! Thankfully, I have friends who love me anyway:)  God has put a precious few friends in my life who have willingly paid the price of being a friend to Monica!  Oh, I am so thankful.  I have learned to accept their help, as often I have seen them blessed to be that willing vessel God uses to meet my need.  They are able to use the gifts God has given them, and I have been able to do what God has called me to do.  I say this in respect to the times God has allowed me to go on mission trips or stay 6 nights (out of the 9 he was there) at the hospital with my husband after surgery.....when he needed me or serve as a women's ministry leader!  FRIENDS......willing to lay down their lives.  So blessed to have people in my life like Carmen Pearce and Banner Brewer....who will keep my three boys and enjoy it! How many people are willing to keep a few extra boys....and have fun doing it? Then I have precious friends who step up and help in other ways, using the talents and resources God has given them (Okay organizing, creative goddess!) God has been good....He provides.... I just have to accept His provision and be thankful.  I have learned, it all works out.

So thank you, to the handful of faithful friends who pay the price of my obedience to Christ.  So often, I have nothing to offer in return.....but a grateful heart for these precious people being His hands and feet to this needy soul!  I can't do it all myself.... I need you, and that is the way God intended it to be.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Decisions, decisions....

Chuck and I are still trying to make some big decisions.  I think, at this point, that we could go either way and it would be a "good" decision.  But I don't want "good"....I want "God's Best."   My prayer is that He will give us the wisdom to choose His best, for His glory.   Everything we have is His.  I have, too often, in my past let my selfish feelings guide me and I have made decisions that were sometimes good, but not His best.  Let me get out of the way here and allow God to lead us.   It's hard to know sometimes and I just have to seek Him with all my heart.  

I have been studying in Nehemiah.   This is a book in the bible I had never really thought much about, until right after our women's ministry  leadership retreat in November.  God gave me the ability to lead that retreat and share what He had put on my heart.  I felt totally inadequate, but He did it.  God has been working in my heart about being REAL and sharing our stories so that others can hear what He has done.  I shared my story at that retreat.  All week before, I struggled and struggled with the enemy.  Honestly, I begged God to not ask me to do it.  But I knew I was to share what God has done in my life.  How He has set me free.  Thankfully, through His strength, I shared boldly the power of Christ in healing this broken vessel.  Amazingly, I found more freedom in telling the truth.  

Going back to Nehemiah,  it's a book on leadership.  Nehemiah was a great leader, who followed God and prayed about everything.  He faced a task that seemed impossible from a human viewpoint, but with God's help it was accomplished in record time.  Many came against him and his life was threatened, it wasn't easy, but he always prayed and trusted God.  I have much more to say about Nehemiah and all that God is teaching me, later on.   Until then, Isn't it amazing that God uses ordinary people like us.....when we are willing to follow Him completely, fully surrendered, willing to obey.  Even when we miss the mark time after time or fall on our face once again, He loves us and takes delight in us....where we are.  It's a process.  Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound.  That saved a wretch like me.  

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

My three boys Christmas trees 2010

How sweet these days are.  Here are the little trees the boys have in each of their rooms.  Just so I can remember.  

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Boys in the house


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Our sweet Mr Jones remembered


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Just a funny


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Women's ministry mail station

800 letters to be mailed out tomorrow informing ladies about our Wonder Full World retreat Feb 11-12  at Lakepoint Lodge in Eufaula.  God has given us this retreat and I believe He has wonderful things planned for the women of Ridgecrest.  It's all about Him.
Lord, strengthen my hands!    


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Monday, January 3, 2011

Turner found his happy pants.


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I will follow you, Lord

Be assured, if you walk with Him and look to Him, and expect help from Him, He will never fail you ||
George Mueller

George Mueller has been such a hero a faith to me.  I have found such encouragement in the way he lived his life totally dependent on God.


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Sunday, January 2, 2011

Happy New Year

It's 2011.....amazing!  Last year was our first year of full time ministry.  God has truly done amazing things! We are so thankful that he takes simple, broken people and chooses to use them for His glory.  There is so much I could say about God's faithfulness in our lives.

  I am believing God for BIG things in 2011.  If you read this please say a prayer for Chuck and me.  We have several big decisions to make this week and we need God's wisdom and direction.  I am going to choose to believe Him and trust Him, still I covet your prayers for our family.  My biggest fear is not following God and choosing my own way.  I have done that enough in my life to know what a mess I make when I let self choose.  My heart's prayer is that I will desire only what God  wants.

Chuck and I started off our first morning of 2011 snuggling in our bed (as we had stayed up way late with friends and our children) and praying....committing this new year to God.  It was a sweet time.  Then we ended our first night of the new year the same way.  I was blessed....

Back to routines and schedules tomorrow.  I am sad to see the Christmas vacation come to an end.  Tolar goes back to school tomorrow and I get back to homeschooling Trace and Turner.  It has been a wonderful time of being together the past 2 weeks.  Having Chuck home so much for the first time in our marriage has been a blessing I treasure.  Being a UPS wife for 13 years, I learned to function on my own and take care of everything that needed to be done out of necessity.  It was lonely a lot!  Chuck missed out on so much  and it was hard on him, too.  So you can imagine how thankful we all are that God has brought us to a new place in life doing what our hearts so longed to do anyway......serve Him (in spite of ourselves:).

This morning I was praying about the upcoming Winter Retreat for our women and the possible kitchen remodel we hope to start in the next couple of weeks.  God spoke to me about both as I gave these things to Him.  About the retreat, He planned this retreat and He will bring it together because it is all about HIM not me!  Then about the remodeling,  I don't know what design is best for our home and kitchen and I asked Him for help.  God reminded me that He has some experience in the area of design, as He designed Noah's Ark and the Tabernacle, just to name a few:)   He can handle a kitchen, because we only desire to do this for His glory as our home is HIS.  Oh, to step out and believe Him to be all that He wants to be for me!

Well, until next time.....remember as our pastor so often says, "God is always taking us someplace new"....