Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Patience || The Love Dare


 Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, 
bearing with one another in love. —Ephesians 4:2 NIV

     Recently I randomly picked up the book "The Love Dare" and the within the first two paragraphs I knew this is what my friendships and my dating relationship needed! Within the pages I realized why I am the way that I am and the reasons I responded in such a way that I do. I saw that I have a short fuse with the ones that I love and its the reason they respond to me in certain ways.
     I have always had a quick sharp tongue and have been one to be controlled by my emotions. Fast to retaliate to harsh words or things I dont want to hear. I am naturally irritable and impatient and often times lack peace in trying times. I would blame it on my artist side but really its my lack of the fruit of the spirit. Lately I have been able to clearly see these faults of mine that really effect my relationships and the wisdom and simple revalation of this book has really helped! 

“A hot-tempered man stirs up strife, but the slow to anger calms a dispute” (Proverbs 15:18). 

     Patcience and kindness are the two pillars of love that help hold a relationshop together. Without them our relationships and friendship can fall apart. 
This first dare was to say nothing negative to the other person. I didnt realize how much I complained! How often I rediculed and nagged! Its taken three times to get this down. To remember not to speak negative but kind. Its our first nature to be the "glass half empty." But getting it right, being positive, patcient and kind is a muscle that must be worked for healthy relationhips and friendships. So I must stay in this spiritual gym if I want to see improvement! If it takes 3 times or 33 times to get it right we better keep trying!
     I am so thankful that the Lord is so gracious to our human condition. That we can be filled with him and like him that we can forgive others thier wrongs. I am thankful for relationships and friendships with people trying to be like Jesus. I am thankful for the marathon journey of love and patcience. I am thankful that I am of the right mind to know when Im wrong and to let the Holy Spirit fix my heart and send me running in the right direction!


Monday, June 3, 2013


Psalm 144:12

May our sons flourish in their youth
    like well-nurtured plants.
May our daughters be like graceful pillars,
    carved to beautify a palace.

How do I know the will of God?
Who am I?
and what do I love?
What are my dreams?
What do I cry about?
What do I sing about?
What am I supposed to do with my life?
Whats the next step?

What am I passionate about and what do I do with it?

With all these questions how can I feel peace in my soul?

(photo credit to Beka Fox! love this pic!)

These are some questions I have been asking myself and its been killing me.
I think a lot of people my age and coming out of college or  ministry programs find these questions haunting them. Its so easy to get fully overwhelmed with these worries and live for the worry.

But our God's way is the way of peace.
 He has equipped his disciples with passions and he, for his glory's sake will lead us forward on firm footing. 
For the glory of his name! 
I have a passion to make him famous! 
He has placed in me a passion to bring him glory, to lead people to his heart
to be a disciple.

(worship forever :) hehehe)
In his word he has showed me what to pray and I know that he will answer all my questions and he will keep me 
and show me which paths to take.

Come quickly, LORD, and answer me, for my depression deepens. Don't turn away from me, or I will die. 8 Let me hear of your unfailing love to me in the morning, for I am trusting you. Show me where to walk, for I have come to you in prayer.9 Save me from my enemies, LORD; I run to you to hide me. 10 Teach me to do your will, for you are my God. May your gracious Spirit lead me forward on a firm footing. 11 For the glory of your name, O LORD, save me. In your righteousness, bring me out of this distress. 12 In your unfailing love, cut off all my enemies and destroy all my foes, for I am your servant.

Psalm 143:7-12

I love to pray the scripture. This is such a good scripture to take to heart. I love that the Lord shows us what to pray in the word.
David was a passionate worshiper, a man of prayer and a man after God own heart. 
And he even had to ask the lord to show him where to walk.
He asked the Lord to show him his unfailing love, 
to teach him to do his will.

This is a prayer I pray often

"show me where to walk, teach me to do your will, for I am trusting you."

And there in his presence all worry is gone.
I know who I am
I am a lover of his presence, a daughter adopted into his kingdom through Jesus.
I dream about a generation of disciples, of world changers
I cry when I am not actively doing what I dream about
I sing about his glorious presence and peace, to bring him glory.

My prayer is that you will truly find your passion and do it with all your heart
that you may live a satisfied life in the will of God

that the sons of God will flourish in their youth
that the daughters of God will be pillars that beautify the church

and you change the World.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Wasting your life for things that matter. PEOPLE.


  Connecting with people is I believe one of the most 
important things to do as a way of evangelism. So many people just want somebody to listen to them; they have the very human need for love and to be cared for. Why can’t the church be the listening ear, the open arms but instead many have adapted to the idea “don’t hang out with sinners or you will become like them.” Jesus walked with the people. He didn’t spend most of his life in the temple, or the synagogue, he traveled from place to place spreading the good news. He went into the tax collectors house, and he sat in the square with the adulterous woman. I am so guilty of sitting in the church and praying for the “lost to come home” without even thinking twice about bringing them in. But how can they call on him to save them unless they believe in him? And how can they believe in him if they have never heard about him? And how can they hear about him unless someone tells them? 15 And how will anyone go and tell them without being sent? That is why the Scriptures say, “How beautiful are the feet of messengers who bring good news!”- Romans 10:14-15. They will never come unless we lead them in unless we ourselves go into the world.

We can’t force a person to believe the way we believe, we can only 
show them how to believe. Their eyes are blinded. We can’t go and metaphorically give sight to the blind but we can take them by the hand and lead them to the doctor. 

            Do we have a deep love for people like Jesus did? 
Can we sacrifice our “divine life” take on humility and give them our lives so that they may know the father? That is what Jesus did. He gave up his divine nature and took on human flesh, to live a life without sin in a sinful world and die to save man from their sin even when people didn’t want it. Oh how much more precious does that make his blood, that he would give up his life for me. How beautiful. And how much more beautiful that the laborers in the mission field that encompasses the whole earth, sacrifice their easy lives so that the lost people would be able to know the father. It is the beautiful thing about evangelism, reaching out to the lost souls, your becoming a reflection of Jesus the most loving and caring man who walked the face of this earth. I want only to be like him. 

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Gravel In My Travel

Mountain top experiences are the best. In those moments its like our faith is invincible like we can't be shaken or quieted. Its a passionate place to be. Where the presence of God is so thick and tangible and we cant imagine what life was before it. 
Weekend retreats, big conferences, special services all leave us filled, refreshed and empowered. Its like God orchestrated this event to specifically speak to me. Its precious and sweet.  This time on the mountain top is life changing. It can switch the direction our feet are treading and push us towards the new seasons and new heights in our relationship with our savior. 

I have some pretty amazing mountain top experiences. 

During a youth conference at my home church I felt the call to go to Masters Commission, thus changing my life forever and igniting a hunger to know the Lord.

Half way through my first year of Masters at the Winter Ramp I experienced a love encounter with God surrounded by 5,000 people on a concrete floor. I realized the significance of Jesus the son of God Holy and Majestic dying on the cross a sinners death he didn't deserve just because he loved me and wanted to be with me. I fell to my knees and accepted the Holy Spirit to come and fill me and use me. 

These were mountain top encounters. 

Precious moments in my life that have pushed me to new levels in Christ.

Last year I started this blog in the begging of the Masters year thinking I would blog about my new life. I chose the name Gravel in My Travel because I loved this country song that had this lyric in it and I just thought it would be pretty clever to name my blog that because I am living in Iowa and in the country. 
But little did I know almost a year and a half later here I am sitting in my room realizing the significance of it.

I would not be where I am without those mountain top experiences. But A lot of my walk with God has been spent on the gravel roads, moment by moment. When I wasn't in a room full of thousands of worshipers or on a stage at a conference. When the passion and the "high" of the special encounters wore off I had to fight my flesh to want to worship God. I have to fight through sleepiness every Monday morning to play guitar for concert of prayer.
I have to fight through the bad attitudes and quick remarks I so easily let slip. 

There's going to be gravel in my travel. 

Sometimes God will withhold his presence so we will search for him. So he can test our faithfulness. The question is will I still pursue God on the gravel road, in the everyday, moment by moment?

On the mountain tops we can see the trees being blown by the wind below. The trees that are firmly rooted are not uprooted at the gushes of wind. In fact from the mountain tops it looks as if the trees are dancing with wind. Dancing with the Spirit wind. But on the gravel roads we can't always see the Glory of our faithfulness. We can't always see the symbolism of our roots being rooted deep into the soil, deep in the word and prayer. The labor of our walk with God.

Oh to be firmly rooted so when the winds blow we will still be dancing under the pressure. Bringing glory to God. To remember that we are rooted to the Rock. He is faithful even we are not faithful for he cannot deny who he is as it say in 2 Timothy. 

Stay FAITHFUL in the process has been the words the Lord has given me in this season of my life.

So as we are all walking along our gravel roads, along your nicely paved roads, or where ever in life we walk regularly may you stay faithful. Remember your mountain top moments, and in the valleys and on the gravel roads stay rooted to the rock. 

" But they delight in the law of the Lord meditating on it day and night. They are like tree's planted along the riverbank, bearing fruit in each season. Their leaves never wither, and they prosper in all they do." - Psalms 1:2-3

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Guard the Truth

"Through the power of the Holy Spirit who lives within us, carefully guard the precious truth that has been given to us."
                                       -2 Timothy 1: 14

" But you must remain faithful to the things you have been taught. You know they are true because you can trust those who taught you. You have been taught the holy scriptures from childhood and they have given you the wisdom to receive the salvation that comes by trusting in Christ Jesus. ALL scriptures are inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is TRUE and to make us REALIZE what is wrong in our lives. It CORRECTS us when we are WRONG and TEACHES us to do what is RIGHT . God uses it to prepare and equip his people to do every good work." 

I have read the bible wrong my whole life up until this point. Have you ever found yourself reading your dreams into the bible?
Have you ever seen your agenda's intertwined in the scriptures?

I have.

When was the last time you read the Bible and been convicted?

I have found myself trying to justify the compromises in my personal life with scripture and at some points even would read the Bible to make myself feel better. How to read the bible is not for ourselves but to understand who God is, why and how he made us for relationship with him.

The Bible is guide in life.
And the Truths in the Word point to Jesus.

Not on how to live a better more satisfying life on earth, 
not on how to get rich and happy....
but to the pure, lowly, humble life that Jesus set as a standard before us.

Don't get me wrong to look up scripture about the love and compassion of God is good and we need to be students about the ways of God and to learn of his love and faithfulness... But when was the last time we look up scriptures about sin? Because if we knew the punishment of our sins is spiritual death we would understand in more depth that the scriptures we looked up on his grace, love, forgiveness and faithfulness bear more merit. We would really begin to thank God for all the above because there is no other savior who could save us from sin that so easily sends us to hell. 

The fact that my sins lead to death in my spirit man and the only thing that could save me is Jesus, makes me thankful today for his Grace.

We are sinners living in a sinful world that was made by a gracious God who has left us a path to himself. He has left us the Holy Spirit and the Bible to navigate through life, on a narrow road to heaven.

I am shouting out the IMPORTANCE OF CORRECTLY INTERPRETING THE BIBLE! More so than ever our christian culture has fallen to more moral failure than that of any generation! I believe this is because we have become lazy in our devotion and avoiding correction and CONVICTION. 

There are precious souls that need to know about Jesus, about salvation, that need to know the truth. It's our jobs as disciples of Christ to do the labor in prayer and reading the bible. To call on the Holy Spirit to guide you in the truth and its our job to stand against the false teachings and the "new winds of teaching" that will blow the unrooted christian. 

Get rooted in the Word of God!
Guard the truth
and keep it written in your heart.

My prayer for all of us disciples to " hold on to the pattern of wholesome teaching you learned- a pattern shaped by the faith and love that you have in Christ." -( 2 Timothy 1:3)