Thirty days isn’t a long time! But it’s long enough!
I just went through a quick study of the last 30 days of my life. I encourage you to consider your life over the last 30 days.
You could ask questions like:
Are you where you thought you’d be? Did you set goals for yourself and did you work your plan for those goals? or did they go by the wayside like lot’s of New Year’s Resolutions?
Did you tell anyone about the goals you had for yourself? Were you willing to be accountable to what you hoped to accomplish?
What were the obstacles that got in your way? Did you anticipate them or did they surprise you?
I know that style of evaluating life is popular with many. You may be one of those. Especially if you are task oriented and working hard toward a goal. I’m not saying I don’t do that at times in my life- it’s important to ask these questions.
Did you know HOPE can become stale? I didn’t! In fact it never crossed my mind to think about it. I understood that sometimes we lose hope- or it wanes in comparison to what it once was even. But stale?
This weekend, at a prayer service I attended, a pastor in attendance prayed over me. Part of his powerful prayer for my life-mentally, physically, emotionally, and spiritually- spoke into my need for “fresh hope”. I sense your hope has become stale.
I hesitate to write this blog post today- let alone publish it. I have so many intimate emotions still tied to it. As I’ve pondered the passing of Robin Williams last week, I realize that to not share is to not tell my whole story. I want to be authentic in my story. I believe as I share, perhaps someone else will be helped.
This week is the 8th anniversary of our daughter’s death. Leisha died August 16th, 2006. I’ve known it was coming. I’ve shed many tears over the last few weeks feeling different aspects of her absence and celebrating her life as well. Each year has been different when her birthday or anniversary rolls around.
Now if you said,
“It’s too hard!
I don’t want to try!” or “I’ve given up!”
– I would understand those answers. I have been there and done that. There are times when that is the most honest answer we can give. I would be sad for you and try to encourage you!
We’re going to meet to pray- as individuals, as couples, as a group. There is no agenda- just a challenge to PRAY!
We may talk some
eat some (we will have some light refreshments- feel free to bring one to share)
But through it all we will pray!
For the NAKED TRUTH Women’s Conference, Oct 3 & 4.
For the women- from speakers to attendees who will be part of the conference
For tickets sales which begin August 1st.
For the lives that will be impacted
For the healing that will result
For the marriages that will be made whole.
For confession, forgiveness, and peace.
For awareness of the consequences of seeking counterfeit intimacy.
For HOPE! GREEN HOPE of course! Hope that grows out of faith and flows into Love.
Bring your own requests- to share- or to speak privately.
If you don’t live close- but feel God stirring your heart to pray for these things as well- Please join us in prayer! Last time we went to the woods, women from Texas to Minnesota, from Pennsylvania to Colorado were praying with us! We would love to hear from you!
Come to the WOODS! God will meet you in this sacred space!
A few days ago, a business woman asked me if I thought I was doing the right thing by focusing so much of my coaching business/ministry these days on someone else’s ministry. She was referring to all the Facebook sharing and blog posts I have written that have to do with Authentic Intimacy. Her concern was that I was building their business and not my own.
At the time, I told her that this was something I have wanted to be part of for a long time and it was worth it for me. But as I’ve thought about it- it is much more than that.
You see, 35 years ago, I was given a book called Creative Counterpart written by Linda Dillow. It was a book I went back to time and again early in my marriage and have reviewed often since.
Through the years I’ve had several opportunities to not only hear her speak – but spend time with Linda. I’ve listened as she lived out in her spoken words what she had written in several books by now, including ‘Calm My Anxious Heart” or Intimate Issues, Intimacy Ignited or more recentlyWhat’s it Like to Be Married to Me, and Passion Pursuit. (See titles below)
In 2002, I was invited to lead a worship team for a women’s ministry retreat in Kiev, Ukraine. I was thrilled when I learned the speaker was none other than Linda Dillow.
Her topic was worship- it was the beginning of her book called “Satisfy My Thirsty Soul”.I was the so-called worship leader- but she was the one who led me in into the Presence of the Blessed Controller.
Just the two of us kneeling at her couch.
Just the two of us sitting on her big rock near her home in the foothills of Colorado.
Then with my team in Ukraine!
Precious, intimate moments with our God!
For me, this opportunity to bring Linda Dillow and Juli Slattery to the Lima area for the NAKED TRUTH conference is an answer to a 20 year long prayer. I told Linda then that someday, I would build a platform for her to speak her voice, God’s message to the people in my world.
It’s not just her books,
or the times she has emailed me
or the times she has cried with me,
prayed with me
worshiped with me
always showing up in my life just when I needed her message.
But that is just the point- for 35 years, she has shown up in my life through her books,
with a consistent message.
A message that pointed me time and time again to see the Lord; lifting my chin to see His face.
That’s a message I want to be part of!
It’s an act I want to be known for!
It’s a voice I want to not only have- but build a platform for when I hear others speaking that same message.
This isn’t about my ‘business’ – or even Linda’s ministry.
It’s about what God is saying and doing in the heart of women all over the world.
Several days ago I wrote that I woke with a LONGING to be in God’s presence to bring to Him all the dreams and desires building in my heart for women to hear THE NAKED TRUTH about God’s great love and passion for them.
If you remember, I invited you to join me in the WOODS for prayer.
Even though many weren’t able to join me in the WOODS- several let me know they were praying- from Texas to Colorado- to Pennsylvania and lot’s of places nearer. Women lifting this conference – and all the women who will take part to the Lord.
But I got to share my prayer time with Janet; passionate prayer warrior, encouraging friend and champion of all things DEEP WOODS. We’ve spent other times together in this sacred space, but today we shared our hearts as we acknowledged our Great God and voiced our petitions for each other,
for the conference,
for Linda & Juli,
for our marriages
for our churches
for their leaders
for our husbands & precious families.
Then we walked the path and spoke of God things that are happening- in the WOODS and in our lives. We took the footpath to the back of the woods and as we turned the corner I was amazed at this sight. The image immediately spoke volumes to me.
I am like that tree- erosion has exposed my roots many times already, but I continue to stand- only as I continue to dig my roots into the soul and drink from the water that gives life.
For I am like a tree whose roots reach the water, whose branches are refreshed with the dew. Job 29:19
They are like trees planted along the riverbank, bearing fruit each season. Their leaves never wither, and they prosper in all they do. Psalm 1:3
Let the fields and their crops burst out with joy! Let the trees of the forest sing for joy. Psalm 96:12
Let your roots grow down into him, and let your lives be built on him. Then your faith will grow strong in the truth you were taught, and you will overflow with thankfulness. Colossians 2:7
This was a good day!
We’ll be doing it again! I have to check the dates with the church calendar. But keep your eyes open for the next one. You may just want to spend some quiet time at the woods yourself.
for our marriages and the health of marriages in our world.
for our intimacy with our Lord and the depth of our relationship with Him.
Will you meet me there? I invite you to wear shoes you don’t mind getting dirty and bring your bug spray. There is a mile long hiking trail that ends where it begins. And there are cabins with comfortable seating and even beds if you need to find rest physically.
I probably won’t get there much before 9:00am. But you are welcome to come earlier to walk the trails or use the prayer stations along the way. I’m planning on staying till noon.
If you let me know your coming ahead of time, I can be sure I’ve reserved enough cabins if we need them because of the weather. But if you forget to let me know- just come! Your presence is welcome.
God is at work! I see it! I feel it every day! I want to be sure I’m listening well, seeking him daily so that I can be in right partnership with him.
Join me in the DEEP WOODS- any time between 9:00am -12:00 noon -rain or shine. Behind Crossroads Church 775 S Thayer Road, Lima, Oh 45806.
If you can’t come- but still want to join me in prayer- or if you have questions? email email@example.com or text/call me at 419-306-8311.
Have you noticed lately how challenging these days are?
You know the ones. You are so very ready for Spring to get here.
You get a glimpse of it, a hint of warmth and then…
And then it snows again!
Cold returns – not just a little
With it comes the wind
And rain – not a beautiful spring rain but the cold, ice rain yet of winter. It is snowing hard enough that it blinds you from seeing what’s ahead. Gray days stifle & drain the hope from your day.
These are the days we must pay attention.
See, these are days we don’t realize how unsettled we feel. We just know we don’t like it any more. We don’t notice our deep sighs and continual complaining. We don’t understand how we are compounding the ache that those around us might be feeling.
These are the days when it feels like it’s always winter, never Easter.
Pay attention friends!
This is the time for you and for me to be intentional:
to remember God is doing a different kind of miracle.
to appreciate the work Christ did out of love -out of obedience.
To embrace the moments of grieving, of burying the dead places of our heart.
to anticipate the resurrection.
Easter is coming!
The resurrection in nature will reveal itself to us in time.
But we have the privilege of preparing for it.
And as we do, actually living out the power of the resurrection of Christ now. The resurrection of our very lives.
What can you do to embrace this moment?
What do you do to keep hope alive in you during days like this?
Share your comments below.
You never know when something you say would be an encouragement to someone who is really struggling.