Category Archives: GWAP Ministries

girls with a purpose

What brand are you?

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What brand are you?

People, people, people…where have we let the devil invade our worth?  Everywhere.  We are of such value, yet we allow Satan to lie to us, rob us, and destroy us.  (I believe God warned us of this…1 Peter 5:8)

Through our lack of accepting value in what God created us to be, we are never fulling the purpose God made for us.  Many never see salvation because they were never taught that our Creator made them, loved them, and valued them.  They will suffer for eternity because a generation of parents failed them.  I have read that ungodly parents are Satan’s best tool and I am sold that that is true.

Then you have those that are born-again yet have accepted the comfort of our culture.  They choose to either hide in the wealth and success, or poverty and tragedy only to pass down to their children that we not victors but rather we will become victims unless we become “successful.”  Their children never see the value their lives have in the plan of their Creator.  Therefore, they too will see Hell or hell on earth as a believer that steadily chooses self over God.

We have believed the lie that seeing our value in Christ is somehow self-exalting.  So we become self-proclaimed martyrs or shuck the idea all together and believe that only our effort gives us value.  These lies have given birth to heretical “christian” theology all over the place.  The problem is the true definition of our value in Christ is not an easy road and so we don’t like to talk about it, much less teach it and therefore we give Satan an easy hole to slip through.

We have GREAT value to Christ, not because we are so special per se, but because we are His creation.  The Mona Lisa would not be near as valuable if I would have painted it.

I recently learned that many stores buy from the same clothing manufacturer, put their label on the clothes and sell them.  So depending on what store you go into, will decide what price you will pay.  Same clothes, same manufacturer, but because of who is claiming them different value.

Can you see where I’m going here?

If you want to strap an evolution tag on you…go right ahead.  They can sell that junk at the discount stores. But I know I was hand-painted, well thought out, designed and appreciated in completion.  Loved even.  That doesn’t mean I’ve done anything, it means The One that designed me did everything.  AND it means I have value.  And what’s even cooler is that He isn’t selling.  Our Manufacturer isn’t a 3rd party, but the Designer, Creator and Owner.  We don’t have to worry about getting lost, stolen, broken…nothing.  He makes us, grows us and at the right time gives us the option to remain His or be sold at the discount stores.  If we choose to remain His then He gives us a job.  He provides for us, protects us, directs us, makes all the tough decisions for us, and loves us like the unique valuables we are.  But if we choose to go to the discount store we can expect just what the clothes in there receive.    Most times they are worn as necessity and when they are no longer usable tossed in the trash to be incinerated.

How sad.  Those wearing the discount store version never took notice at the hand-painted color or the intricate weaving together of the fabric.  They didn’t notice how perfectly they fit.  This is no accident.  Satan is about.

This is the result of a war that we cannot see.  This is why faith is so important.  The evidence of things not seen is all around us, faith is hoping in The Jesus that we cannot see, but have absolute certainty in His title as Christ.

We must receive His tag and we must accept His job if we truly want our children to know a better life than the lies of self-esteem, self-made, or self-established.  No one self-(fill in the blank) is valued as much as the one that is created by an Amazing Creator, cared for, and put on display as a beautiful work of art!  Nor are they ever as fulfilled.  Do you want your children to live on the teeter-totter of happiness and despair?  Or do you want them to live fulfilled in the Hand of One that can and will do what He says.  And even if the outside doesn’t take on our idea of a masterpiece…fortunately there is One that knows far more than we, and He can compose them into such that we could never know.  That my friend equals peace…for you and them.

How much would you pay to make sure all your children’s needs are met and they are completely peaceful all their days?  I know Someone that paid with His life, and I pray you know Him too.  More so, I pray your children know Him and accept His value for them.  

I know Who created you…but I ask what brand are you?

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Humble Passion

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Humble Passion

As I am preparing for this summer’s church camp, I am drawn to look at the past church camps for reference on what is good…what needs improving…what I did wrong…and how to help others learn from my errors and triumphs.  As I lay sleepless doing this and asking God to show me what He sees in this, I begin to hear the words, “humble passion” over and over in my head.  And as I break each word down in my usual analyzing way, I catch it!!

Let me beckon all of you teachers of Christ to learn these words.  To adopt them as your goal.  No long look to the number of people you have led to Christ as a measuring stick, but how many did you show humble passion to?

First we must determine what we are humbly passionate about or we could get real squirrely real quick.  I’m talking about humble passion for a Jesus that would pick me up out of a gutter and love me with a tenderness I have never known.  I’m talking about a humble passion for a Savior that said, I will pay whatever price I must to have you…and did.  I’m talking about humble passion for a Lord that will watch me abuse the very grace He provides and still love me enough to correct me.  A humble passion for a Father that reminds me He values me just because I exist.  A humble passion for a conglomeration of words that never fail me and always guide me in the right direction.  A humble passion to please and love the most amazing God/Lord/Savior/Father anyone could ask for.

Ok now that we are square on what we are humbly passionate about let me now paint you a picture of that humble passion in action.  These two little words demand a balance that is not easily acquired.  When I teach or even speak I want to show the passion that makes my skin explode off of me…or maybe I should say my “fig leaf” explode off of me (see Genesis 3:7).  I want to be so authentic and vulnerable that it demands attention.  Yet I also desire the humility that can take decades to carve into my soul.  So humble that I know that the passion that leads me to action and demands attention; is NONE of me, and all of Him.  So humble that when one thing goes right I immediately praise and thank my Lord for the great power it took to use me as a facilitator of this work!

I dare you to change your goal in teaching God’s Word from how many are saved…to how many saw humble passion for God in me?  How many were not drawn to my intellect or even love; but saw the love of a Savior and the Mind of infinite wisdom?

You see we have gotten it all wrong in our quest for the American Dream.  The American Dream builds little kingdoms for ourselves.  The American Dream brings glory to my results.  How successful I am in the eyes of men become my value.  Even in ministry.  How sad.

My American Dream is that I could live humbly passionate for Christ.  I will not seek to be a martyr, nor to lead X amount to Christ.  I will not always look like the good Christian woman…because sometimes mere men cannot see my accomplishments.  I won’t often be accepted because neither was Jesus.  But my hope, my dream, my longing is to love Him with a humble passion that cannot be denied.  And when I fall to my face in His amazing presence, He will say, “Rise my good and faithful slave, you have done well and I am pleased.”

I pray teachers of The Word, this too is your goal.  And with transparent vulnerability we could love each other thru the hurt this brings.  And encourage each other to continue being humbly passionate…yes excited…bursting…and energetic to allow God to be seen in our stead.

Only by His grace.

 

The best way to teach…

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The best way to teach…

I found this in one of the blogs I follow.  I wish I could remember where so I could give them proper credit.

Anyway I think it is an awesome assessment for anyone teaching.  And not just teaching school, but teaching their kids, teaching at church, or simply giving counsel.

Use it to study, pray the verses and hang it somewhere to remind you in those teachable moments we are to point to Jesus for their correction (allow their hearts to be changed), not punish out of frustration (temporarily stop the behavior).  *note to self*

How to teach like Jesus

I find 2 things in my roles as teacher, #1-the best way to learn is teach, and #2-teaching is a gift, use it wisely.

Happy teaching!!!

GWAP Parent Letters

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Some things we discussed Friday:

Finding someone to serve in the month of November:  I don’t want to just sit in a class room and teach what Jesus wants us to do with these girls…I’d like to show them.  I have been looking for an opportunity for us to serve in the month of November.  There is great blessing when we sacrifice our wants to serve others and I sooo want to share those blessings with these girls.  I want them to see how backwards the world teaches us to gain satisfaction.  It’s not thru working hard to acquire “the good life,” but thru sacrificing and serving others and allowing God to provide us THE GOOD LIFE!!  My prayer is that from this they will crave more of it!

At this time I do not have a place of service, but am praying God will provide just what we need.   One reason is I wanted to see thoughts of the girls and you about this idea, before we commit to anyone.

Going caroling this December!  I thought it would be a great way to praise the Lord and share Him with the town.  We could meet one evening and go and sing about the new born King, then come back to the church and have hot cocoa and cookies.

I greatly desire for the families to get involved in these adventures.   To experience these things with our kiddos can be some of the best blessings for them and us!!  So the more the merrier. 

Once we discuss these ideas and make some decisions, I will post more info on GWAP Facebook and text.

Here is the Member letter I sent home with the girls in case they didn’t make home with it.

2012 First letter money, salvation

And here is a short testimony of me!  Just wanted to share with you parents who I am and where I’m coming from, and prayerfully going!!  🙂

Traci in a nutshell

How to become a child of God

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How to become a child of God

I pray this falls on humble hearts and open ears.  God bless Your holy word.

How does one trust in Jesus?

I believe we are all born with a yearning inside, every one of us, for The Creator.  Some try to fill that yearning with different things (money, men/women, kids, knowledge etc.).  But the only thing that fits that empty spot inside us is Jesus.  And He promises in His word that He will reveal Himself to every man.  “For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse”  Romans 1:20.  This is the work of the Holy Spirit calling you, applying pressure to seek God.  I believe the next step in coming to know that you need Jesus is seeing Jesus and God for who they are.  Once we know who God is and what He did thru Jesus, and I mean know and believe with our heart…we can’t help but call out to Him because we see our sins and life compared to a perfect God, a perfect God that loves us, and we are humbled.  Thru that humility our heart is softened, our pride is gone, our need is exposed and we are ready to accept the sacrifice Jesus made for us.

So let me tell you a little about who God is.  He created all.  I mean all.  Read the first 2 chapters of Genesis (first book of the bible), and see how He did it.  He just spoke it and it happened.  I mean literally said, “Let there be light” and it was so.  If He can just speak things into existence then how could we ever question His ability to handle us or our lives?  In Romans 5:8 it says, “Christ died for us while we were still sinners. This demonstrates God’s love for us.”  So think about this…He loved us while we were spitting on Him, beating Him with an instrument designed to rip flesh off, lying about Him, rejecting His love, slapping Him, humiliating Him, turning our backs to His pain and ultimately killing Him, yet He had the power to speak whatever He wanted and it would happen?  I don’t know about you, but I have a hard time loving someone that has only lied about me, and if I had that kind of power…wow would I be dangerous.  So let your mind sit in this place for a minute…yeah, He loves you that much.

His love for us is beyond what we can comprehend, His power is beyond what we can imagine, and His patience is beyond human possibility.  So that is God in a very small nutshell.  He loves us, He is capable of anything, and He is perfect.  I don’t measure up…I don’t even qualify to get on the scales.

This is the part I was saying humbles you.

(“Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.” James 4:10)

Now for the next step in this process…  Once you see yourself against the backdrop of God’s perfection and realize that you are not worthy, or able to be in His presence, you have to realize that there is way to be His child.  He made that way thru suffering and enduring.  Romans 6:23 tells us that the cost to pay for your sin and mine is death.  That’s it.  There is no other way.  I still stand empty.

Ok here’s the suffering and enduring part, Jesus which is God in human form came to this earth thru a virgin birth walked with us for 33 years without committing a single sin.  During that time He revealed a way of life that was fulfilling and satisfying to that emptiness in our soul.  Then He willingly allowed us to beat, spit, humiliate, reject, slap, and kill Him.  This was the price for our sin.  This was the death that was required.

I want to let that sink in a minute…

Ok now here’s the rest of Romans 6:23…”but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”  Three days later He was resurrected.  Showing and proving that He was God.  Showing and proving that He loves us more than we can understand.  He endured death and came back to pay for our sins so that we could spend eternity with Him once we trust Him with our souls and life and accept His gift of payment.  John 14:6 says, “Jesus answered him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one goes to the Father except through me.’  Romans 4:24 says, “but also for us. Our faith will be regarded as God’s approval of us who believe in the one who brought Jesus, our Lord, back to life.”  “He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life.”  1 John 5:12

Now you know.  It’s simply but not easy.  It’s a gift accepted thru weeping and sorrow, but it’s a gift we could never get ourselves.  It’s forever.   It’s not just words, thru our love and dedication to Him it’s a life change.  How could it not be?

Now you stand in a place to make a decision…will you see yourself as He sees you?  Will you humble yourself enough to trust Him?  Will you accept or reject Him?  Will you make your own way that leads to hell?  Or will you call out for Him and accept His way to heaven?  He wishes for all men to be saved (1 Timothy 2:4), what do you wish?

How does one trust in Jesus

In awe…

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I sit here in awe of the faith building, kingdom adding, miracles of God that He has shown me in the last few months.  Sometimes I am in this place where I pray that the Lord would come back to save His sons and daughters of pain, and also those children that would be safe because they are not yet accountable.  The view from human eyes looks dim, so we focus there and forget how powerful God is.  I see broken families that I pray desperately for, sisters and brothers that fall away from their faith, pain come to those that are following their faith, children with open hearts squashed by worldly parents, physical illness hold the elderly in a prison, salvation offered and rejected and I wonder…when will You come?  When will You stop the evilness that runs wild here?  Selfishly I wonder when He will stop my pain?  My children’s pain?  My husband’s?  Oh but how joyful I am that I am not in control, nor do I make those decisions.  Because my blindness is His wisdom!  He has plans, He has people to make His children, He has lives to grow His love inside, He still has wounds to heal for some, and wounds to inflict on others so that they might grow in His grace.  He has a Kingdom to run, I have NO idea the lengths or depths of how that is done.  What I do know is this when we are faithful He will bring fruit.  And that fruit is worth the pain suffered.

Just 2 days ago I was blessed to have the Lord show up in the lives of 12 little girls and 2 big girls.  The last day of GWAP for this year was a MIGHTY ONE!!  I was prayed up, and I thought, prepared and expecting the Lord Almighty to show …and show up big, but my little mind had no idea!!!  We started class and had another awesome time of questions and answers.  And in the Sr. class they were big people questions…such as, ‘what is worldliness?’  ‘how do we not sin?’  ‘what does propitiation mean?’  ‘how does showing too much skin lead to impurity?’  and on and on.  I felt that we discussed some real “meat.”  Then it was over to the big church to worship and praise God with our voices.  Something about that many girls gathered at the altar of God singing about how His great name heals all, saves all and loves all is indescribable!!  As we sang I told them verses to apply to the songs so that they could relate that we weren’t just singing, we were praising and celebrating the goodness of God.

Now God had impressed on me that He was gonna do something big here, but what I discovered was that big to me and BIG TO HIM are two different things!!  I should back up a week.  I had two girls tell me the week before that they asked Jesus into their hearts at home…well I didn’t have the chance to talk to them one on one before they had to leave that week.  So I had been preparing to talk to them 1st, before class started.  I did, and really felt that these girls sincerely received Christ and were now God’s children.   That was my idea of big.  Here’s God’s:  As we were singing and praising girl after girl began to be stirred, then convicted and when it was all said and done 3 more girls surrendered to Christ and ALL of them were convicted and crying about something.  Some were too young to understand the conviction, some didn’t have the knowledge to apply to it, some were too scared to receive it, for some they just didn’t have words…but all were moved by the mighty hand of God!!   Including their 2 big girl teachers!!  My sister-in-Christ Eryn and I were speechless.  We were overwhelmed.

I had promised a pizza party after our worship and as I drove across the street to buy the pizza I had waiting, I was shaking and couldn’t put 2 sentences together because God’s bigness is more than we humans can handle.  We just can’t get it.  As much love as I feel for God and as much reverence as I feel for God I cannot begin to come close to giving Him what He deserves.  I can’t imagine being in His presence.  I can’t imagine His glory.  And I can’t imagine how overtaken I will be just to be in heaven with Him.

Sometimes I think our over-valued egos lead us to think we are “something.”  Let me be the first to repent right now…with the cross in the background and His work in my life in the foreground, I am so little…so small and yet still sooooo loved.   I marvel at how a God so big, so powerful, so important and so busy has time to hear the tearful, small voice of a wife/mother/teacher/friend and follower of His Son beg for His help to tend her flock.  Beg for Him to cover her mistakes.  Beg for Him to change her impurities so that she can serve Him more wholly.  Beg for Him to provide what she absolutely does not derserve…and then deliver results like I saw Friday.

In the voice of Bill and Ted…”I AM SO NOT WORTHY!”

Thank You Father for hearing me, acting on my behalf and the behalf of those children.  Thank You Father for taking the time to love me and include me in things that I could never do myself.  Thank You Father for saving eternity for 5 little girls and encouraging 2 big girls to keep fighting, praying and loving…no matter how dim it might seem.

Hallelujah!!  Hallelujah!!  Hallelujah!!!!

Praise and Worship Lyrics

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Praise song lyrics multipleWe are going to some more praise and worship this Friday and I will have the lyrics at church, but I thought if anyone wanted what I had I would post them here so you could print them off.  I am also sending 2 CD’s full of awsome music to keep them plugged in this summer!

Music can open the heart…what better than to input Jesus into an open heart!!

(Click here for several, or on the pics for those specific songs.)

Praise song lyrics multiple