Tag Archives: Jesus

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Ok ladies, prepare to be offended…

Let me begin with a couple of disclaimers: 1.) I have no authority to teach a man, therefore, they can keep scrolling (they’re on God’s radar not mine). 2.)I am not talking to the unbelievers…they have never tasted the sweetness of my Saviour through repentance of their wickedness, nor committed their lives to His care, so they aren’t on my radar either. I am talking to all the professing christian women that get burned by my words.

Next, let me tell you that this is coming from a heart of love and confession. Not the kind of love that makes you feel good, but the kind of love that calls you into repentance so that you can experience the full measure of what God has in store for you. Why waste my keyboard? Bc I do desire so many of us to experience more than the small life we have…I want us to live in that place that God is glorified in and our families, have peace and joy overflowing.

Here goes.

Do you know it’s ok not to like someone? Do you know it’s ok to recognize someone is right or wrong? Do you know that you are actually called to examine the fruit of people, and then proceed accordingly? Jesus didn’t like everyone. He recognized and called out those that were wrong and He pointed out the lack of fruit from the hypocrites. He drew lines in the sand…literally. He held people to their word.

It seems the anti-God mantras of today….”can’t we all just get along,” “don’t worry, be happy,” or “some things are better left unsaid,” have processed in our self-protecting brains into…”can’t you just keep truth to yourself and pretend things are perfect so we can all get along and I can live like I want to?” And, “don’t worry, just don’t think and medicate with fake blindness so you don’t notice all the sin around you.” Last one, “some things are hard to say, and you might not like me if I say them so they are easier left unsaid.”

Geez! I am reminded of John the Baptist as I type. I am the voice of the one calling out from the malls, the voice of the one calling out from your kids ballgames, the voice of the one calling out from your ladies nights out, the voice of the one calling out AT CHURCH, the voice of the one calling in your BIBLE STUDIES, the voice of the one calling out in your homes where your children watch every move…”Repent, repent the Kingdom of God is at hand!!”

Ok now we are at the meat of the reason I’m up at 4am typing…have you heard the conversations we are having these days, ladies? I admit I am very bad at small talk. If put in a situation that I have to, I say things like, “so what kind of gum do you chew?” Or, “have you watched any good documentaries lately?” Total uncomfortable silence. I would be better off to say what I’m really thinking, “Do you know Jesus as Lord? If you don’t I’m going to pray right now and ask God to show me how to leave you with the gospel of Christ.” At least the uncomfortable silence would have a good meaning.

And when I put the ball in someone’s else’s court and they ask me something like, “Do you watch the newest TV show ‘Hell’s Angels’?” And I have no idea what they’re talking about but by the sounds of it, it’s just like the rest of the garbage on TV.  At that point I’m stammering to hold on to my “woman chit-chat gene.”  Most times I fail and they move on to someone else and I listen in sadness at the self-indulgent, Christ DIS-honoring talk that plays out.

I love to talk about Jesus, but no one else does!!!  Every time I open up a casual conversation with anything about Jesus, it’s worst than uncomfortable silence…the unbelievers look at me like, “Oh you’re one of them,” and the christians agree with whatever I say just to shut me up.   The christians all know how to “amen” and “hallelujah” at the right times. They know they are supposed to do/think/act/SPEAK like Christ, or at least like they love Him. But they don’t really; at least not as much as they love themselves or the accomplishments of their kids and family. You can’t say the Lord’s name in vain 5 times, tell me you’ve done nothing all week but cater to your kids, you hate your job; and then agree that Jesus is the best thing since sliced bread. If you love SomeONe don’t you want to talk about Him? Absolutely, that’s how I know what you really love. Jesus says, “For the mouth speaks out of that which fills the heart. The good man brings out of his good treasure what is good; and the evil man brings out of his evil treasure what is evil. But I tell you that every careless word that people speak, they shall give an accounting for it in the day of judgment.” (Matthew 12, emphasis mine) Come on girls! You know how to love your kids, but not how to love a Saviour that died to save you from God’s wrath?

Your words come from a process. You think about it, it goes into your heart, you love it, you speak it. Think, desire, do. So I know what you think about and what you love by what you talk about. If you are complaining, you are telling God, He gave you a bad life. If you talking in fear, you are saying God isn’t big enough to handle __(blank)___. If you are putting someone down, you are saying God had to pay more for them than you. If you are talking about the latest worldly line of junk, you are saying I don’t read my bible near enough. Don’t worry my toes are getting squished too. I love to talk about Jesus, but as soon as I see it will be one sided…I defer and begin the same routine as everyone else…complain, worry, put down, distract.

How sad our Saviour must be at this. He conquered death, put a worth on us that we could never deserve, restores our souls, and provides ALL we truly need, and we respond to Him with selfish lives that dishonor everything He did.

I can’t tell you how many times I hear christians saying OMG and the like! Or cuss. These are the easy things to rid our filthy mouths of. If I have to come home and explain to my kids why a “christian” said the Lord’s name in vain, or why they would allow their children to do/say __(blank)__, or why they are always so worldly; then you can bet your kids notice also!! I call all of us into repentance!

Our words as christian women should be to honor Christ! We should proclaim His goodness. We should have fruit to talk about! We should hold each other accountable! We should build others up according to their needs. We should use gracious words of humility and truth. We should be talking about the choices we need to make to raise our children to love Christ and honor Him with their lives. We should be helping one another to see the good in our husbands instead of laughing and tearing them down. I am ashamed of many conversations I’ve taken part in.

If women truly use 25,000 words a day…how much glory could we give our Saviour in just one day? I pray we would choke on every idle word. And I’m not talking about being nice! I’m talking about hard truth when it’s needed. I’m talking about stopping the conversation when it’s getting dark. I’m talking about making others uncomfortable if they continue. I’m talking about a higher calling. Don’t spout christian-ese at church and then complain the rest of the week and expect me to believe you love Jesus. Lip service dishonors Him. Be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves! (James 1:22) I’m talking about truly helping one another live a life that would fill us with joy, peace and strength that passes all we know.

It’s a hard road to walk alone. It’s not undo-able, but how much farther would we get down the road of growing in Christ if we were truly talking to each other in a way that brought godliness in our lives, instead of filth, fear and ungratefulness? I don’t want to walk around offending people all the time, but then again Jesus did if it was needed and I’m called to be like Him. The bible tells us we can’t travel down the same path unless we are like minded…it’s commanded to set yourselves and your children apart. We can go out into the world, but don’t get to friendly with it. If others refuse to repent and think like Christ, love like Christ and speak like Christ, pray for them…but don’t follow them. It’s ok not to like someone! It’s ok to even walk away from family that is making choices that you can’t be part of bc you love Christ more than them. Do you want your children to choose friends that will help them or hurt them? How will they know how this is done unless you show them the hard truth of how it’s done? None of us want to make others uncomfortable, but that’s how Christ loved you. He was willing to make you uncomfortable in your sin so you would repent of it, bc He loves you.

How many salvations did we inhibit by making Christ look like a hypocrite in our lives? How many christians did we help down the path of sin bc we chose to silently, or vocally, make them believe we were ok with it.

I know in our attention deficit world that most people didn’t read passed the 2 paragraph, but if you are still reading and like me hear God speaking to you about this, answer Him.

First examine your salvation. Are you truly saved? Or did you emotionally “pray this little prayer?” The scripture says, “Test yourselves to see if you are in the faith; examine yourselves! Or do you not recognize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you– unless indeed you fail the test?” 2 Cor 13:5  If you’ve been saved for anytime do you recognize the following things to any extent in your life?

AM I REALLY SAVED?
1-Do you Enjoy Fellowship with God and Christ?
2-Are you Sensitive to Sin in your Life?
3-Do you Obey the Scriptures?
4-Do you Reject this Evil World?
5-Do you Love Christ and eagerly await His Return?
6-Do you see a Decreasing Pattern of Sin in your Life?
7-Do you Love other Christians?
8-Do you Receive Answers to your Prayers?
9-Do you Experience the Ministry of the Holy Spirit?
10-Can you Discern between Spiritual Truth and Error?
11-Have you Suffered on Account of your Faith in Christ?

Learn more:

Test your faith, John MacArthur

 

Am I a luke warm christian? Have you put on the white robe of Jesus’ salvation and yet when you look down, you have defaced it so much you can’t see it anymore?

DO I LOVE ME MORE THAN JESUS?

1 – Do Cares & Worries of This Life Dominate Most of Your Thoughts & Conversations?
2 – Do You Practice Sin on a Regular Basis?
3 – Do You “Love” The Things of This World More Than God’s Word?
4 – Are You Too Busy for Jesus? What are Your Priorities?
5 – Do You Use God’s Name In Vain? (‘Oh My G-d?’)
6 – Do You Fail to Pray Earnestly & Pray for the Lost Who Will Spend Eternity in Hell?
7 – Do You Fail to Preach the Gospel on a Regular Basis? OR Do You Hinder Others?
8 – Are You Indifferent About Your Sin? What is Your Attitude?
9 – Do You Seek After Worldly Wealth & Fame vs Seeking First The Kingdom of God?
10-Do You Fail to Obey Jesus, and God’s Word Consistently?

Read more:

Am I lukewarm?

Whichever is the case ANSWER HIM NOW. Repent on one side or the other.  Be broken over your sin and pray for His strength, commit to do things His way and receive the blessing this brings OR crumble in brokenness of your sin, repent and tell Him you know He is the only answer. He died for you, rose again and wants to be Lord of your life. Accept His salvation and live it.

How does one trust in Jesus

 

This would be true change in our world.

God forgive us all!

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 performance beast raises it’s ugly head again…

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The performance beast raises it’s ugly head again…

Since reading a post from ‘Raising Godly Children’ about “raising little Pharisees” (an excellent post by the way), I have fallen under great conviction.  As I read it and my children matched up to the criteria of Pharisees and my parenting style matched up with the criteria of a Pharisee, I was stopped in my tracks.  I began re-assessing all kinds of things in our daily life.  I began to realize that although my intentions to fill them with the ways of the Lord, the way I was doing it was very wrong.  I had done the very thing that God has NOT done with me…made things of the law.  Not that I yelled at them all the time (but I am guilty), not that I sacrificed animals with them, not that I never show them love and not that I myself perform spiritual rituals with no true love for the Father.  I do love the Lord, with all my heart, soul, mind and strength.  But I was intensely trying to force them to obey Him because I loved Him…not teaching them in a way that they would obey because they love Him.  Now I do believe that my kids love the Lord, but my harsh teaching style when it came to life lessons was probably giving them reason to doubt, AND was not creating repentance in them.  It was creating little law abiders.  Oh they love the law!  Because they are generally good kids and are able to most times fulfill it.  And heaven knows they have learned to spot those that are NOT fulfilling it. Little Pharisees.

So I have been trying to take complete inventory of what I’ve taught them and more importantly what I’ve shown them.   The way I have let Pharisee law creep into our home is by disciplining them when I was angry.  Or disciplining them more when I was frustrated because I was wanting to do something  and they were interrupting me.  Or by telling them that those that love the Lord follow His rules, so why are they not doing that?  …By rating them on their performance.  This is hard to write and was even harder to face, because I, being raised on the principal that performance is what counts was trying so hard not to let my kids learn that wicked, never relenting message.  Yet here I am almost 10 years into parenting with 2 little Pharisees.   Prided when the did right and quick to point out those that don’t.  Hearts that were hardening to the gospel because they thought, ‘We’ve got this” since they could follow the law most of the time.

I thought I was giving grace.  There are many times I didn’t give what they would deserve.  And mercy because I gave them freedom when they didn’t deserve it.  But I was so harsh when I did give them consequences, and so harsh when they failed to perform that they were learning the disease I have been fighting against in my own mind, so hard, …all my life…performance based grace.

My inability to see it makes me cry even now.  I am so blessed that God has opened my eyes while I have time to change; albeit not much.

I see it so many times in my husband and I both…we are frustrated and will pierce their hearts with how badly they performed; instead of taking the time to teach them and bring their hearts to repentance.  Sometimes out of laziness, sometimes out of selfishness, sometimes out of bad insight on how to make them change, but always saying the same thing…you didn’t measure up and somethings wrong with you because of it.  Yeah somethings wrong…WITH ALL OF US!  It started with Adam and Eve and until my Lord comes for us we will all be wrong in our performance.  That why Jesus came.  How did I miss this?

My youngest daughter will probably struggle with this more because she is already inclined to self-righteousness by the fact that it is her nature to over-achieve.  So like me we can easily think ourselves to be the pride of the Father because we are performing so well.  I hate it.  I wished so badly I would have fought this ugly monster for her earlier.  I know in my own life how hard it is to fight after it’s taken hold.  This blog post is the very proof that I don’t even always see it manifesting itself.

And my poor older daughter that is inclined to laziness, possibly because I’ve made it impossible to achieve for her since her nature is not to over-achieve but to enjoy everything she sees around her.  Who has time to enjoy when there is so much to be done?  (my wretched motto)

I’m broken about this, but also encouraged that the Lord is shining light on it, telling me He has stepped in to change it.  I cannot change it.  I have failed to do the very thing that I desire the most…to give my girls a love for the Lord that surpasses anything else.  To make them realize their value is in God’s love for us, not our own accomplishments.

I love the Lord so much because He has been the only one in my life that did not expect me to perform.  He has been the only one I can remember that said, “I just want your heart, nothing more, because I love you just as you are.”   All those years I spent trying to prove I was good and worthy to be loved ended in the same place, heart-broken, frustrated and wondering where I hadn’t done enough.  A place that would send me into a heel-digging, overachiever, determined to do EVERYTHING PERFECT the next time phase.

Finally I picked up a bible and started reading it.  Finally I heard the heart of THE PERFECT ONE and finally He got it thru to me that I needn’t prove myself to Him.  Well I say “got it thru,” maybe getting it thru is a more honest statement.  Obviously I am still struggling with this performance beast.  But thankfully I have the Lord on my side now.  So when I end up in this heart-broken, frustrated, and wondering where I haven’t done enough place…I can repent, ask the Lord for help and have hope shine on me…love shine on me, just because He thinks I’m worth it.  Broken, sinful me is worth it to Him.  And so are my little Pharisees, to both of us.

Please read this with this in mind, God loves us freely.  He teaches us kindly.  Deals with us patiently.  And He values us regardless.  Do the same with your children.  And pray that God will heal me and mine.

Subtly and Urgently

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Subtly and Urgently

 

Small shifts and time.  These are the 2 biggest weapons, I believe, that Satan uses against us.  When things shift just slightly, if we notice, we think, ‘well that’s not too bad.’  And most times we don’t even notice.  This is no more evident to me than if you look back at compulsory educational history.  Something I have never done until we started homeschooling.  We began homeschooling because the Lord led us there, but since I’ve found a thick book’s worth of reasons we should have done it all along.

When you go back and look at the history of government schools you see they didn’t start out by yanking God out, or speaking directly against His teachings. As a matter of fact those in authority said we need to teach them to read so they can follow God by reading His word.  But I believe that was step one to a bigger devised plan that would slowly and subtly change the values and conscience of this nation.

Satan doesn’t come in the form of a scary devil, he comes in the form of “helpful change” or “fulfillment” (sound familiar?).   The first compulsory schools were inducted over 300 years ago.  That seems like a long time to us, but subtly they have gone from their first philosophy…to educate children so that they could read scripture to, no scripture allowed.  From a desire that seemed “good,” to a desire that is no less than wicked.  We excuse it because out of urgency we need our kids to learn to read while we do other things.  It has so subtly been introduced that we don’t even recognize the evil in it.  But with days like last week and the terrible killing of children the evil is seeping out.

Yes, we can tell ourselves that it could have happened anywhere, and that is true.  But when we subtly tell God to “stay out,” what can we expect?   Is there any other place in this world that Christians would send our young children that daily introduces them to sex, violence, anti-God teachings, idolatry, mental abuse with the authority over them being forbid to use the Lord in correcting?  We don’t let them watch R rated movies, and they only last a couple of hours, but we will send them for 8 hours a day for 12 years to watch an R rated life.

Ok, let’s move on from school.  Let’s look at marriage.  When did marriage go from parents with years of wisdom choosing spouses for their children to “get drunk in Vegas and marry the guy you just met” wisdom?  Now I know that arranged marriage sounds horrific to a nation that is all about having their choice be #1 priority.  And I’m not saying that we should return to arranged marriages bc that got abused also, but I see a lot of wisdom in it if parents are true followers of Christ.

First of all you don’t enter in with the ridiculous idea that you’ve found the perfect man/woman for you.  You don’t quit the second it gets hard or feels uncomfortable…because you expect that from the beginning!  You learn early to work through your differences and apply God’s principals to trials (assuming you had wise parents led by God in arranging your spouse).  And the only thing to govern your house is God’s teachings, because you have no preconceived notions of what to expect from Mr or Mrs Wonderful.  Now all that being said I do believe we could pick our own, if we were raised to value godly qualities and in the realization that marriage doesn’t save you, Jesus does.  But the wisdom of godly parents will still far outweigh our own, especially if we are emotionally engaged.   The problem today is our overwhelming culture (especially the 12 formidable years thru that R rated life) teaches them subtly that their is an urgency to please self.

My point is that subtly we went from one extreme to another.  And the extreme we are in now wrecks families hourly and creates selfishness beyond imagination.  And the urgency to marry that “perfect spouse” has priority over wisdom.  The subtly of the change makes it so that we can’t even really pinpoint in history where it all changed, yet it changed drastically!  It went from God ordained qualities to a big ol’ heaping help of self-service.

You don’t like my thoughts on marriage, look at child raising.  When did we go from training them to live godly to training them to be selfish, disrespectful  non-empathetic me-pleasers?  Oh maybe the subtly in their education helped here.  Parents are too busy, too self-involved and too weak because they have already been thru the indoctrination experiment and follow whatever whim seems good to them.  See how this all ties in nicely?

What about the very thing we say is our foundation… Christianity?  When did we change from a Christianity that stirs sacrifice and service from its deep indwelling of agape love to Me-anity?  A faith based on what feels good to me?  Again, two extremes and nobody really knows where it started to shift.  As a matter of fact you can’t even convince the subscribers of Me-antiy to believe they have embraces heresies!  They think it’s the faith of the apostles.  Can you imagine how Satan laughs?

My point here is not to change your view on school as much as it is to awaken in you a desire to open your eyes to the changes and take a hard look at what you live for…is it for God’s approval, or your own that gets tampered with through Satan’s lies of fulfillment?  And what are you teaching our next generation?

The generation we live in now is apparent all around us.  Look at our choice for presidential candidates or any other leadership roles, our values in what we will tolerate for education for our kids (perpetuating all of this), the feel good, easy Me-anity that runs rampant in our churches, the lack of work ethic, the lack of sacrifice, the lack of service to others, the inability to live for something bigger than self.  All qualities of the father of lies, none are qualities of Jesus.

So don’t look and think…it’s not that bad, because if you are honest you have to see that it is!  And if we want to have “change” we need to change back to the time before we embraced the subtle urgency to only please ourselves.  And do the hard work to re-teach the next generation that “easy” and “me” are not what it’s all about, nor will it make you happy or fulfilled. 

Calling sin, sin, and pure good old hard work and sacrifice rooted in the true education of God will avail much…anything less is the subtle urgency of Satan.

Day 60 or so and…

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So I’m just reviewing in my mind how thankful I am that God’s grace has been upon me while we figure our “homeschool rhythm” out.  As I am a re-covering perfectionist I was nervous that teaching my children their entire education would trigger a relapse, and I would be educating, but it would not be the good kind.

To begin with I have to say that homeschooling thus far has been one of the best blessings God has given our family!  We love it!  It has brought us closer together, grown confidence in my kids, allowed us to live…not rush from this activity to that with little time inbetween to slow down and live in the moment (that moment that we will never get again), allowed us to nurture relationships outside our immediate family, allowed me time to nurture my husband, taught us how God spans across all subjects and grown our faith!  Wow, and that’s all happened in only about 60 days!!

Yes there will be days (and there already has been) that will make me want to pull my hair out…but honestly I was pulling my hair out way more when they were in public school and I was trying my best to make sure we did all we should do, cleaned all we should clean, served everywhere we could serve, and held tight to the home teaching I needed to do to make sure public school didn’t slip in there and educate them on things untrue or destructive to our faith.  I’m so glad God is such a genius!   And even more glad that my own humanity is not what fuels this.

I wish I could sing praises to God all day long for all that He has done for me and my family.  And when He delivers such blessings as this, I am so humbled and in love!  I fail all the time.  I lay in bed some nights and wonder if I’m teaching them enough, pushing them to hard or how I will ever teach them algebra!!  But then I step back from circumstances and look thru my God glasses and see that I’m not the one running this thing (bc if I was it would already be in the ditch), so I go to sleep, wake up, talk to The Man, get my orders and carry on.

That’s what I keep doing and He continues to be faithful.

I know there will come a day when we have to get a little more structured, spend a lot more time in studies, and plan better…but right now it’s like I was given my kids back.  It’s like I’m mom again, not the lady that manages the taxis, cooks and shops for food, the maid, the scheduling assistant, and on an on and on.  I’m mom.  That’s what I was made for.  That’s what He designed me to do.  Somewhere in the midst of life we lost the intentionalness of reaching the goal I knew we were supposed to reach.  We were being swept by the current and unaware that we were floating out to sea right along with everyone else.  And then God very lovingly opened our eyes and we paddled over to the shore, got out of the lazy river and began discovering the joys of being intentional.  We are able to put our faith in God first, our family second and everything else falls somewhere behind that.  I remember writing answers to “what my priorities are” in bible studies.  They were written correctly, but I wasn’t living what I wrote.  Now I am, at least most days!

My best days are the ones that I try to teach like Jesus taught.  He didn’t plan 30 weeks ahead with visual charts, powerpoint presentations and cue cards.  He didn’t compare His planner with all the other homeschool mom blogs and think how inadequate He was.   He looked around and saw where the need was.  Sometimes the need ran up and begged for help.  Sometimes the need lay waiting to see if He would notice.  Sometimes He was tired, hungry, thirsty and had too many emails/texts to answer…oops that’s me.  But regardless of how He felt or what may have appeared urgent at the moment He used wisdom to “intentionally” line up His priorities with those of the Father and teach the things of real value.  He saw the souls that He was teaching, not just the curriculum.  Can you feel that  moment?  The moment you realize the satisfaction of doing what  you were meant to do and watching it pay off?

Appropriately enough my worse days are the ones I have an agenda to fill them with curriculum/knowledge and not teach their souls!

This brings me to why I wanted to start this line of journaling.  I want to remember to teach their souls not fill them with knowledge.  I want our homeschooling to bring glory to God!  I want to remember the beauty in watching God correct my family and lead us down a path of awesome blessings.  I want to remember that it’s  not my hands that bring them goodness, it’s His.  I want to reassure myself one day when I re-read this that we did this because God told us to, therefore it’s up to Him to provide what we need.  I want to finish reading all those super mom blogs with this one so I know that I’m not damaging our kids bc we don’t have a garden planted yet, haven’t won the noble peace prize, nor do I even have tomorrows lessons planned, but we are doing the will of the Father.   He has brought me out of all my other fires; He will deliver me from this one, assuming I go to sleep, wake up, talk to The Man, get my orders and carry on.

Traci in a nutshell

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A little about me for those I minister to…

 

Traci Danker:

I grew up a little here and a little there until 8th grade.  Mostly in Oklahoma, but I did have about 3 years in Salt Lake City, Utah.  In 8th grade I moved to Wellston and began growing roots.  My parents had divorced when I was 1, and my mother (whom I lived with) was remarried.  My maiden name was Traci Francis, but in school I used my stepfather’s name (a long story that I won’t bore you with)…Higginbotham.  I so often am remembered by this very looong name!

My mother was abusive.  During my senior year at Wellston the DHS was notified and took me out of her home.  My dad lived in Florida at the time and I was sent there!  I was devastated because what upheld me during the abuse I lived with was the love of my classmates and boyfriend (who is now my husband).  I didn’t know my dad very well.  As I got to know him, I realized that not having him in my life was another abuse of my mother.  He is a very sweet man who was told he would be acting in my best interest by not disrupting the family life I had with my mother, stepdad and brother.  We grew close very quickly.  And I was very happy to have someone who was kind to me.  However, my heart was still in Wellston.  So when I turned 18 (February 1989) I came back to graduate with my class.   I lived with my best friend’s parents (very sweet and caring people) and started college as soon as we graduated just like everyone else.  But I was experiencing some freedom that I’d never had before, so I decided to see what all was out there.

In December of 1990, my dad made a trip from Florida to see me.  He brought me the good news of Jesus Christ!  I was not raised in church.  I knew NOTHING of the bible.  I had visited a couple of churches with friends, Jeff or my dad.  But I was so intimidated because I didn’t know anything about what they were talking about I couldn’t wait to get out of them!  So when my dad came to talk to me about salvation I can’t even remember a word that was spoken.  I just remember being in a car with him in the parking lot of a Braum’s and feeling like the car was being picked up and twirled around and sat back down.  I remember crying and my dad crying and a squeezing of my heart that was like nothing I’ve ever felt.  Again I don’t know what he said, I don’t know what I said, but I DO know that God was there.  And I knew that He was good and I needed Him.

As I walked away from that experience and my dad went back to Florida, I didn’t know anything about living for Jesus.  I returned to my life desiring to be a good person, but really having no idea what that meant.  I based my “good” on being honest and responsible.  So I explored, played, and dabbled with all kinds of sin.  I thought  it was ok as long as I wasn’t hurting anyone (I only considered people in this thought, not the Lord) and I was paying my own way.  Hence, I looked like everyone else around me.  I was even honest so many thought well of me.  I lived this disgraceful life for more than 20 years.  As I look back I can see why I did it, I can see how God is using it, but only thru God’s grace can I look back and forgive myself for all the pain I caused the God that saved me from hell.  The God that saves me each day from my own self.  The God I finally allowed to teach me what true love is.  The God that has healed my heart.   The God that has delivered me from so many bad choices and the God that has saved my kids from living thru the hell I did.

It was only after I had been divorced twice and seeking another marriage, that I finally realized that Traci couldn’t do this anymore.  I needed something bigger than me, something wiser than me and something stronger than me.  Somehow I knew what I needed was God (He was drawing me thru my salvation).   I fell on my knees every day and read the bible every day for a year begging for Him to fix the messes I’d made.  I begged Him to heal the wounds and show me how to be “good.”  It took about 6 months into that year before I started seeing Him really work, but I saw it!  And I craved more of Him!  I finally knew where goodness came from…lasting goodness and I wasn’t about to turn it loose.  I devoured the bible.  I studied it, read it, fell asleep with it, sang it, and started trying to preach it.  I wanted everyone to know what I had found out.  I quickly learned that everyone didn’t want to know what I found out.  So I withdrew and buried myself in God’s Word, prayer, time with the Master, church and my daughter.  As I did God started answering all my prayers.  He was mending me.  He was teaching me.  He was loving me.

This all took time…about 8 years and counting.  I am still being mended, still being taught, and PRAISE GOD still being loved.  He’s shown me how to love and others. He’s given me the grace to forgive those that have hurt me.   He’s broken much pride and sinfulness in me.  He’s blessed me beyond measure and He’s saved both of my daughters for eternity.

The third marriage I was seeking was to my now husband, Jeff Danker, in 2005.  We are living proof of God’s goodness and grace.  We have a family built around Jesus!  My girls and their love for the Lord overwhelm me with joy!!  And also encourage me to keep fighting… keep fighting for all those girls like I was…lost and confused.  My girls have also taught me so much from their pure minds and hearts and have led me to this ministry of GWAP.  Thru Jaylee’s prayers and obedience GWAP was started 3 years ago as home bible study for a few of their friends.  Now it is a growing group of awesome girls that I am blessed to serve.  I don’t know all of God’s plans for us, but what I do know is this.  I love Him!  I love these girls!  And I will beckon Him for every step we need to take, and will wear my knees out so that He will be the love of these girls lives.  I want them to know where true goodness and love comes from and I want to serve the God that has been so good to me.

There you have it…me in a nutshell.  I hope this gives you insight into this ministry and into this teacher.  And I hope it gives you peace that my motives are pure and bathed in prayer and biblical teaching.  I am an open book…so if you have any questions I will be happy to talk to you.  I will you give the answers I have and seek the ones I don’t.

May God continue to bless us and lead us where we don’t even know we can go!!