Saturday, April 4, 2020

Now: Five Minute Friday

The prompt is “Now”. You get one word and five minutes to write whatever comes to mind. Go!
FMF link!!

I don’t like to sit still. I am always looking ahead. Turning the calendar to the next month thrills me. I am always happy to help turn that page when my friends are a week behind because it doesn’t bother them.
God has a plan for me and I am slowly accepting it.
It’s called “Now”.
I am not enjoying it.
He is asking me to slow down and look at today. What can I see right now that He can do through me to speak to hearts needing to hear His reassurance?
We have a lot of transitions at my school-potentially merging with the other large Christian school in town. There has been so much uncertainty about the future and this has compounded it.
I have no idea what my future holds next year and if I will be classroom teaching the subjects I have previously taught and God has been prying gently every single bit of control from my chubby toddler hands. He is also asking me to empty my pockets.
I have stuffed my pockets full of little things I delight in controlling.
He is reminding me that this is the time to look for Him NOW, not in the future. This is our time. Each day, we are sharing the good news. Especially as tomorrow is Palm Sunday. “Hosanna” means “Lord save us.”
How fitting that we cry it out each Easter.

I am grateful He has been using the words of others’ posts and writing out the clouds in my head so I can see clearly.

-Tammy
My bilingual Bible: we are studying James and even here we have the “corona” in my mind. 😂

We had to go to our room to host our Bible study via Google Hangouts 

Same passage in English...

Self-covering for a grocery trip. Strange days we live in!!

Monday, December 9, 2019

Faithful

It's not Friday. I'm not spending five minutes typing.
But, I'm here to share. God is good.
He is answering prayers.
I shared with my chapel students last week some entries from a prayer journal my girls and I began in December 2018. We stopped writing our prayers and answers after I went to Guatemala. God didn't stop answering our prayers, but I kept no record. We have begun to write again.
And? I am thankful. Oh how He loves to defeat cancer in the people around us! Hallelujah!
(and sometimes, He doesn't defeat it on Earth. He takes those people to Heaven where death has no reach. We have had those people around us as well.)
My challenge to you? Write your prayers. Keep a record of the conversations you have to our faithful God. Then, mark the answered ones.

God keeps using Scripture to confirm His voice to me. Most recently? Psalm 5:12. The word Shield was on my mind during worship. I was writing down thoughts and my pen took over and wrote that word. Then on the slides of the Pastor's Power Point? "Surely, Lord, you bless the righteous;
    you surround them with your favor as with a shield."

Then, at school reading through my "199 Promises of God" devotional book (which is not linked to any date or order), we read that exact verse as the verse of the day just after that morning. It took my breath away. I gave testimony of God using that exact verse. I shared it with all five of the classes I teach that day. 


Demo photo credit from Dayspring website. See the rainbow behind the date?
That's on EVERY page and I didn't even notice!!

Today, a similar occurrence. I had ordered a perpetual calendar, "Promises of God". I didn't even notice but the cover had a rainbow. Often this school year, friends send me pictures of rainbows via text message or tag me on social media. It happens on Monday nights often when I seem to be feeling low. Today, that calendar arrived and today's passage was the exact passage dealing with Rest that our Pastor preached on yesterday and there was a rainbow on the page (and my friend texted me two rainbows from West Florida). Just a couple days ago my friend in LA also texted me pictures of a rainbow.
God is really trying to reassure me that He's with me. The passage? Matthew 11:28-29.

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls."
He spoke in service how rest is operating in Jesus' way. In His job, His marriage, His plans, His finances, His victories. Then you are working WITH Him and it really is easy and light! 

I was not applying this yesterday afternoon/evening. And I became weary and burdened quickly. My poor husband is away on business and he got the full load of my emotions last night and a little more this morning. (He's trying to help me fix something on the car from a distance and I'm underqualified and don't have my head around the concept. I'm totally capable but doubt my abilities.)
Anyway, that rainbow and that devotional really got my attention (finally, right?!) tonight. He's got this. I need to TRUST Him fully.
Whew.

Anyway, those are some of the ways God is at work and speaking to me. Is He speaking to you? I'd love to hear about it!!
Love,
Tammy


Friday, July 19, 2019

Distant: Five Minute Friday

Though intermittent, I'm trying to utilize my posts for when I have something worth reading.
I've been having a lot on my mind lately and am grateful for a chance to share.
This week's linkup on Five Minute Friday is titled "Distant". We set a timer for five minutes and don't take a break to edit or re-write. This is raw, unedited, heartfelt writing that we share and comment on with each other. It's the most uplifting, encouraging writing community and I love the people behind those screens. I was blessed to meet up with many of them in real life a few summers ago at an FMF Retreat.
What a joy to be walking on Earth at the same time as these friends!!

Go!
The thought on my mind is to do with parenting. How do we ensure our children are actually being raised to follow Christ? If we don't do the work ourselves, we are expecting others to usher our children into the kingdom of God. We watch from a distance as the Sunday school teacher or the AWANA leader once a week pours into our kids. Perhaps we pay the tuition to put them into a Christian school so they get five days a week of a spiritual environment, but our distant contributions will not ensure anything if we're not doing work as well.
I could pay a "nursery" to care for my plant five days a week, and then pick it up at the end of the day, hoping that it would flourish in that environment. It might make it okay, but on the weekends, in the evenings, what am I doing to make sure that plant is thriving?

If I don't have my child plugged into a consistent church community because I myself am not involved, how am I being fed to pour out into my kids??

This is a post of self-reflection because God is stirring my thoughts lately. I teach at a private Christian school, but I cannot depend on my children's teachers to do the work I am tasked to do.

I am not allowed to be a distant mother, hoping that my own faith will rub off on my kids. I'm even less prepared to teach them if I'm not being prayed for and held accountable and worshiping corporately with others.

Sure, churches are full of people and people have their own problems, but we need to try, my friends.
Our children are at risk of being drawn AWAY from the love of God and what is true and right and noble and pure, because we are living in a world that wants to destroy our faith.

How are we equipping our kids for shining in the darkness when they grow up and move out??

-Tammy