Sunday, December 09, 2007

Calling...The Small Yeses

The previous post about promises that I typed a few weeks ago has still been rattling around in my brain a bit and I wanted to get some thoughts "on paper."

Let me start by prefacing that I think sometimes the promises of the Lord correlate to our calling. We use the word calling to indicate the thing (or things) that we feel we have been places on this planet for, the things we are passionate about and the things we feel we were meant to do. I think that each and every one of us HAS a calling....the first calling being the call to come to the Lord...the second calling being to become more like Him, and the third being those specific things that we were placed on this planet to do.

Some aspects of are calling, ARE promises. Meaning, that they will happen, they are promised to us. Period. Other aspects of our calling require a level of obedience on our part. We are required to obey for them to come to pass. It requires a devine/human cooperative.

There are some things that the Lord has called me to. He has spoken directly to them. And, when I am doing them, I feel passionate and on fire and to quote the book "How to Ruin Your Life by 40" they are my sweet spot.

However, I am realizing how so often I feel because I know what those things are that the Lord will somehow just make them happen. But what I am realizing is that those things actually more often than not require me to say yes. Even when that Yes does not seem to make a whole lot of sense. I think the Lord just wants to be able to use those who are willing to obey no matter what, and those small yeses reveal our heart: how willing are we?

I am in a season where there are things I am starting to say yes to. Just like Abraham and Joseph, if I had been given what was promised at the beginning, my character would not have been refined and I would have misused the thing the Lord had given me.

And so, I am content in the process.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

The Waiting Game

John Dawson, president of YWAM spoke at our church a few weekends ago and he talked about promises that the Lord gives and how sometimes after the promise is given, there is a waiting period before the word comes to pass. John said that often when the wait is long, it is because the fruit from that promise is going to be great. Some examples would be the promise given to Abraham about a son being born, and how long he and Sarah waited for Isaac to be born. Another example would be the dreams that Joseph had and how long it took for those dreams to come to pass.

John also said that in the time between the promise given and promise fulfilled the Lord often takes us through the refiner's fire and allows stuff to be refined out of you.

It is interesting to me how at times the heat of that fire seems to be turned up and other times it seems that you have been all but fogotten. I think of Joseph and how he could have responded to the things that happened to him during those years in between, or how Abraham DID respond....right now I am in the midst of waiting for several promises of the Lord to come to pass....and in the middle of a season where the waiting feels really hard. And, I know the response I am giving is directly related to my trust in the Lord. If I trust, like Joseph in prison I wait. If I don't trust, I try to take things into my own hands and do it my way, like Abraham.

I am struggling with the wait, not to be hopeless about the promise or disappointed in the process. What this really boils down to is this, what is my relationship with the Lord like? Am I solid enough to patiently wait, or is it really a shaky thing that crumbles at the sight of struggle.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Some photos from this last summer

My friend JJ and I wine tasting in Lake Chelan

Dessert with a bunch of friends this summer

My roommate Lora and I at a Karaoke bar!

More friends and I at an event called "Love Tacoma." These events are designed to connect those who work and live in downtown Tacoma.

Roommates Lora and Kristie and I at a BBQ at my house this summer.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Oh yeah!

I almost forgot.....roommate Julie got engaged a few weeks ago and so I will be in yet another wedding. I have a few pictures from dress trying-on that I will load and a bunch from this summer and fall that I need to add too. It looks like Julie and Tim will be getting married in March and the bridesmaid dresses are still being decided upon.

For those of you wondering, the wedding I was supposed to be in about a year ago never happened. The bride and groom not only called the wedding off, they are no longer even dating. It is actually, in my opinion, a good thing. I had felt like they were rushing into things, even told the bride, but felt at peace about letting the Lord do His work, and whaddaya know....He did. Still not 100% sure what the whole story is about how it happened, but there ya have it.

Kyle and Becky (brother and sister-in-law are preggers). She is due in May and they are very excited, as are my parents. They are not yet sure what they are having, but I am going to be an aunt!

And, finally, I have a gal staying with me this week named Rosy. She is from Switzerland and it has been grand to have her with us. She leads a snowboarders Discipleship Training School in Switzerland and I am thinking.....this winter??? A trip to Switzerland to go skiing in the Alps followed by a trip up to Germany to visit my friend Michelle who lives there now? What a fun adventure that would be! I would have to save my money (see post below) but wouldn't that be fun? One of the things on my life-list is to ski in the Alps, and here is my opportunity. All I would need would be a plane ticket and spending money as I could stay with Rosy. Hmm....I am just sayin'!

It's a Record

Wow, two posts in a must be record or something!

Anyway, thank you to all who either responded via commenting on the blog, via email, or even via Facebook regarding my marathon dilemma...and the dilemma is no longer a dilemma.....dun, dun, dun....I AM going to train for a marathon. In fact, the training has already started. I think I mentioned in my last blog entry that they recommend if you are not a strong runner (i.e. you don't already run longer distances) that you take as much as a year to train. This helps eliminate injury, eases you into the longer distances and just generally makes the process go smoother. So, the particular training schedule I am on takes 19 weeks to build you up to running 10 miles, then you plateau there for a while until 19 weeks before the marathon when you start building up to about 20-22 miles.

I am already learning a lot from the training even this early on. My friend Kristie, who ran the Chicago marathon says that physically, once you are up to running those higher distances, running the marathon is not that much harder on your body. But, she says that it is a huge mental challenge. And, I am seeing that even at short distances like 4 miles (side note: I can hardly believe that I am saying 4 miles is a "short" distance!). What I have noticed already is my huge tendency to want to either a. quit/stop or b. want to run the marathon, but not want to put in the work.

I have always said that Americans live in a "fast food" society: we want it all, we want it fast and we do not want to work at it. Several examples come to mind: we want to lose weight, but we want to be able to eat what we want and not have to work at self-discipline and control. We want to be out of debt, but we are not willing to put the work into cutting back expenses or not using our credit cards. We want a good job, but we are not willing to work our way up the ladder, or put the effort into going to school to get that job (or in some cases, we want to win the Lottery and not have to work at all!). We want to go on great vacations, but we charge it to our credit cards instead of saving up.

We want all of these things and yet are for the most part not willing to do our part to get them. Now, you would think that all of the discipline that I learned from losing those 50 pounds (and keeping them off for the last year and a half) would have prepared me for using that same discipline when it comes to running. Alas, this is not the case. And, maybe it is easier (I have had a lot of people tell me when I tell them about the marathon that "they could never do that.") for me than others. I do seem to have a bit more determination in me than the average person. But, that propensity to want something while not having to work at it still nips at my ankles almost ever time I run.

What I am realizing is that the first mile is always the hardest (why is that???). Once I push through those thoughts of quitting or stopping and get past that first mile, things seem to get a bit easier. However, even throughout the rest of my running, there are still moments when I hear the "just walk" phrase run through my head. In those moments, I am almost always not THAT tired. And, in fact, during the run I did last night I determined NOT to listen, and just keep going and I ended up being just fine and not at all unable to finish. In fact, I probably could have kept going for quite a while longer and been fine.

So, I can see what Kristie and others meant by how much of running can be a mental thing. It really is. I know I have thought that it is only a physical far can your muscles and bones take you. But, I see that there is a very big part of training that involves your mind and your will.

This will be an interesting journey!

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Not trying to be a slacker.....I promise

OK, I know it has been like three months since I last posted, but every time I have thought about logging on to post, I have just not had time. Plus, in all honesty, life is not really that much different than it was a few months ago. In some ways life is always changing and I am always growing and learning new things, but in other ways, life seems to look a lot the same!

I had storm doors put on the front and back doors this fall. I had only had screen doors, which were great in the summer but never really did much in the winter. The doors I had added have internal screens in them, so in the summer they double as screen doors and in the winter help keep the heat in the house. My back door is pretty new and did not leak before the storm door was added, but the front door was terrible. There is already a noticeable improvement in the lack of draft from the front door.

Here is what they look like:

The garden around the house is looking cleaned up for the fall. I used to just burn out by the middle of the summer and then starting in March go through this frenzy of weeding. This year, I did a lot less gardening and so I have not felt as burned out. So, I have been actually doing a little bit of weeding this fall. I am hoping that this will equal NOT having to do as much this Spring. I have a spot in the back that is almost full shade that I am dreaming about what to do with starting this spring. Anyone with ideas for some nice shade-loving perennials??

I am hosting Thanksgiving at my place this year. I did this for the first time three years ago, and I had a blast doing it. It is hard work, and not something I would want to do every year at this point, but I am looking forward to trying my hand at it again this year. It is fun to be at my place and use some of the fun china and dishes that I normally don't use. Otherwise they just sit there and it feels like why should I even have them if I don't use them.

My friend Kristy just got back from running the Chicago Marathon and we had breakfast a few weekends ago and it got me thinking.....could I do something like this? Then, I read somewhere that Katie Holmes (nice pop-culture reference there) ran a marathon, and I remember that Oprah did one once too. And, I remembered that running one is on my life list of things to do...and so I have been thinking about doing one. Now, keep in mind that I have never run more than about 3 miles at a shot before! However, the one Kristy is thinking about doing next is in October in Dublin Ireland, and that just excites me. I know I would not be fast, but the challenge of doing one is starting to grow on me.

So, I looked up marathon training schedules and it looks like there are a few 4-month schedules and a few 5-month schedules. However, they both have you starting off running 4 or more miles...which I have never done. So, last night, I decided to go out and see.....and, I ran 4 miles! I am super-duper sore today, but I did it! So, I am seriously thinking about doing it. I figure, if I am really slow, and only run 5 miles per hour, I could still finish in between 5 and 6 hours. Slow, but it would be a finish. Kristy, and the websites I looked at all say the same thing: once you start running over 10 miles, most of the training is mental.....finishing is more a mental thing than a physical thing. So, we'll see. I really have until May (five months before the actual marathon and the beginning of a training schedule) to decide. So, I am going to start working up to see how far I can really go.....

My job is still going well. And, I feel like I am learning more and more how to have balance of things in my life. This has been SO important lately because more and more leadership is being given to me with things. Our singles ministry, which I am on the leadership team for, had a retreat and I got to speak at the retreat one morning. It is so fun. I am loving our ministry and all that goes along with it. I have even started a small group of gals off-shooting from the ministry. It has been so important to have this ministry, which is primarily focused on fellowship together because of how busy I have been with other things. I have had every area of my life stretched and pulled and more and more weight put on my shoulders and it has been such a relief to have an outlet for some fun time.

We have as a group done a bunch of fun stuff like, Mariners game, swing dancing, costume party etc. It has been nice to have a social life!

Well, that's all I can think of for now. I pray your life is well, and I will TRY to update more!

Wednesday, August 29, 2007


It probably comes as no surprise to anyone how busy summer can get, and I am no different than most summer has been packed-full. I apologize to those who read my blog about how long it has been since I last posted. My bad.

So, you might ask, what have I been doing this summer that has kept me oh so busy. Well....a two week trip to Hawaii fell at the beginning of August, another week-long trip to Lake Chelan happened in July, a Freedom Immersion Week last week, the Jesus' Ministry Conference in July, and then just fill in with regular stuff like, BBQs, work, etc. and it's all filled in from there.

I have had a new house-mate for the last few months. Her name is Amie and she has been great. Much better fit than the last gal. Amie is a CPA, loves to BBQ, and is warming up to my cats.

Still working for the church, and learning a ton. I think this has been the biggest thing in my life lately: learning how to balance. I am exposed to all of the stuff that happens at the church that 99% of the time no one ever hears about. This is both the good and bad stuff. I had been having a hard time learning how not to take the burdens of the stuff I know with me. There is a time and place for compassion and loving others and care and concern, but Iwas taking it to an extreme and carrying burdens I was not meant to carry. I had gotten into burn-out mode and was working all the time. Even when I was not actually at work, I was doing ministry. And so my life had been occupied with this from sunup until bed-time. I was having problems unwinding at night and sleep was a problem for me. My insomnia was back full-swing. There was literally nothing in my life that did not revolve around ministry of some sort. And, if I did take time for myself, I felt guilty about it the whole time and was consumed with thoughts of what I "should" or "could" be doing with my time. I quite literally had forgotten how to have fun! Not good.

And so, I had to recognize that I was not trusting the Lord to handle my life and the lives of those around me, it was my pride that though *I* had anything to do with fixing anyone's problems. And to realize my old patterns of fear of failure had set in and I was doing my darndest not to fail at anything, and working myself to death trying to prevent failure or to someohow prove myself to the Lord or those around me.

And so, I have learned recently, how to better rest. I was basically told by pastor Brian that I needed to take a vacation and rest. And so, a ministry trip to Hawaii basically turned into a small vacation for me as I got to stay five extra days. What a blessing. I learned to have some "me" time in my day, and I am journaling more regularly to get the thoughts and worries swirling around in my head an outlet (so not to bore you all with my daily ramblings and musings, and because I probably can't even talk about most of what I hear/know each day). I am learning to give my burdens over to the Lord: He does a much better job solving all the problems in the world than I do anyway.

Pastor Brian told me that I can save the world later, and this has been true of my mentality up until now....feeling responsible for everything and everyone. And, I just can't do it! Juggling all of my responsibilities has been tough, but I see that I HAVE to take time for me. Otherwise I will burn out by 40! I have to have things in my life that I enjoy doing, just for the sake of doing them and recognise that those things are there and a part of my original design just as much as the cool ministry-related parts of me are there too.

The Lord is still showing me areas of breakthrough that I need in regards to relationships as well. There has been a lot of breakthrough, but I am seeing areas where I still need to be refined in this.

There will probably be a lot of cool stuff coming up in the next few months. I know there are some amazing trips that we have scheduled, and I am hopeful to go on at least one more this year. We'll see! Lots of stuff is happening with YWAM, and literally the doors to the world are opening up through our ministry. I am so made for what is happening right now and I feel so incredibly blessed and privledged to be a part of what the Lord is doing!

Hope you are well!

Thursday, June 14, 2007


I am pondering the age-old "When Harry Met Sally" question today about whether single men and women can be friends.

If you have never seen this movie it is the story of Harry and Sally who meet and dislike each other at first but through circumstances meet up again and quickly develop a friendship. In the movie they are attracted to each other and in the end, they end up getting married. The answer in the movie seems to be: as long as there is no attraction, it is possible but the moment attraction enters the picture, it is impossible.

In college I had tons of male, single friends, and as I have gotten older, and so many of my friends have gotten married and busy, the number of male friends I have has dwindled. I have missed having a male perspective on life issues. This is one of the things I most love about working at the office: I am surrounded by men! It has been a bit refreshing to have that male perspective. And, having gone so long without those type of friendships, I am pleasantly refreshed by these new friendships.

After all, we are made in God's image: both male and female. Without both perspectives in our lives we are missing out on aspects of His character!

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Two more Pics

I took the following pictures today as I was on my way home from the grocery store. I am starting a 40-day Daniel Fast tomorrow and I had nothing appropriate to eat. As I was driving home with my food I was reflecting and praying about why I am doing this fast and all that this particular period of time represents. As I was driving down the road, I looked up and saw what you see in the pictures. Of course this kind of thing happens frequently and I am certainly not prone to see "signs" in the clouds, but I heard a whisper in my heart as I looked up and I was filled with hope and encouragement.

Picture Update

So, here are some pictures from my birthday. We went to the Melting Pot for dinner and a Mariners' game a couple of days later.

Happy Memorial Day

Well, the lawn finally got mowed, and it did NOT involve having to rent and/or borrow a cow of any sort! It only took an hour!...which is actually half an hour shorter than I thought it might take since I had to pass over several spots over and over just to get the grass the right height. I still need to weed wack and weed, but the yard is looking pretty good. If the wtheather is nice tomorrow I might spend some time out there again. I also got a new pump for my pond, and the waterfall is working again. I should really take a picture of it and add it to the blog just because it looks so neat right now. No raccoon raids in a long time due to the electric fence I have so I am enjoying being out back with an iced tea, a book and the soothing sounds of water.

I am looking for a roommate right now. Lora and Kristie both moved out and I had another gal here for a month. It is a long story and not very edifying to anyone to discuss, but the gal I had in here just did not work out. And so, I have an empty room right now. We have Freedom Immersion Week next week and the room will be used for the week with a guest, but after that, I am not sure who will be there! It is a big faith builder for me right now because without the extra rent and only having Julie to split the bills with, my finances are really tight right now. Any prayers on my behalf for the Lord to come through in this area would be greatly appreciated. I can charge groceries etc. to my credit card, but that feels like a slippery slope....eventually that bill will have to be paid too. Really, the answer is for my extra room to be rented so that I have the income from that.....It's just one of those many areas I am desperate for the Lord in right now.

The job is going well. I feel like I have really settled into a groove with it and I actually have some afternoons that are kind of relaxing and "easy," relatively speaking. It is such a mix of task and people that I think the biggest thing I am needing to balance is knowing when I need to be task-driven, and when I need to be people-driven. Sometimes it is obvious, and sometimes it isn't so obvious. Especially during Freedom Immersion Weeks when there are so many people in and out of the office and yet my work-load still needs to be taken care of. The last Immersion Week we had at one point there was probably a dozen people in the reception area and the phone rang and I literally could not hear the person on the phone due to the din of voices in the office. It was pretty comical. I still feel the pinch, however, when I do something "wrong" and need to be corrected...those old feelings of fear of failure rear their ugly head.

Women's ministry is also going well. I am being pressed a lot in this too. There is a desperate need for women to rise up in our body and shepherd the women at our church. This means me. I am fully capable of leading a small group, and yet I have not done so. There are some things in the works regarding women's ministry and I know I have to step up to the plate right now and not let my fear or lies prevent me from doing what I have been created to do.

So, there is your more detailed version of my life right now.....and in a nutshell-I just need to trust the Lord more!

Wednesday, May 23, 2007


Do you ever feel so burdened with responsibility that you just want someone to just tell you what to do so that you don't have to think about it? That's how I feel right now.

My lawn needs to be mowed in a most desperate way. Really. Chia Pets are jealous. And I look out at my lawn and I just would be so nice to not think about the fact that a small cow could hide in the grass and wonder when I will have time to get the mower out. This is just one thing that I just so long for someone else to be responsible for. It is on the priority list to get done, it is just at the bottom of the list. The reality is that at some point it has to move up to the top, otherwise you might not be able to see the top of my house from the street. :) This is just one example of how I am learning how to balance life....what is priority and how do I know when one thing needs to take precedence over another? I don't have the answer to that right now, but if anyone knows where I can find a cow, I've got a great snack for it to eat!

Saturday, May 19, 2007

OK, people seriously....

Has it really been over a month since my last post?? How does time go by so fast? So much has happened, as it always seems to be with my life, but que cera. Anyway, had my birthday, and that was fun, I will post some pics.

Life has been interesting of late. I feel like I am more desperate for the Lord to come through for me than ever before in my life, in all areas of my life: financially, with roommates, in my job, with women I am ministering to, in relationships, etc. But, I am also quite at a place of peace with it all too, because I know that there is little I can do to change my circumstances, and so it just puts you in a spot of knowing that if the Lord doesn't show up, well, He's just go to!

So much with all that is going on is just at a tension spot right now. I am not through any of it but rather right in the middle of the fire. It is a good place to be, but it is also hard. I wrote earlier that this year was supposed to be one of miracles and I have found myself questioning the Lord: "Where is the miracle in THIS?" but the Lord always says: "Ask me to show you the miracle." And, it 9 times out of 10 what I am needing to learn is the miracle. I write about how desperate I am for Him to come through and that is something I am learning. I am learning about my authority and how to confront someone out of love. I am learning more about being interdependent with those around me as roommates move on to new living situations and I am left feeling alone. I am learning about reaching out for help when I need it and not being able to rely on my own strength because I don't have enough to get me through. I am learning about knowing that what I am being asked to be responsible for, that I can do it even though I want to quit most of the time. I am learning to radically love others and that this doesn't always mean leaving them to do what is going to kill them spiritually, but instead how to speak the truth in love. I am learning that the only way for the Lord to come through is for me to be in radical prayer...but that it is hard to see what the Lord can break your heart. I am learning more about being myself around those I would seek to know on a deeper level, and being OK if they don't want to know me back.

All of that is the miracle of this season. I have a lot going on and a lot of balls I am juggling right now and yet they are all in one form or another connected to each other. So, things are a bit tangled and messy, but I am well. I have never been closer to the Lord, and I have never felt the gentleness of His leading like I have in this last month.
May the gentleness and kindness of the Lord be yours as well.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Where to begin....

It has been a few weeks since I last wrote and the main subject of this post should be "new job" since that has taken up a majority of my time lately.

Let me start by saying, I love it. I love the people I work with. All the guys at the office are great. I love being a part of what is happening at my church and being in the middle of everything. I love that I get to see folks from the church when they come in or get to talk to them when they call or write to them when they email. I also get to communicate with people from all over the world. For example, this week we had Freedom Immersion Week at the office and 30 people from all over the globe were there in the office. I LOVE that. I love that I got to pray with and for a number of them. I love that. I even actually really like the administrative stuff that I get to do. My mind just thinks administratively.

Whew, but boy, is it a busy place, and particularly this week, I have been tired! I have been on a steep learning curve with no training. I didn't mention this in the last post, but Gretchen, the gal who used to be the office manager at our church, had her baby three weeks early and I did not get a day of training before I started! I got about a half an hour lesson on how to answer the phones and slowly people have been showing me how to do things, but's been just me from day one. I wasn't super surprised that the baby came early. In fact, I think my exact words were "Of course!" I just had to walk in like I owned the place and make it mine. In some ways it is nice not to have anyone to compare to.....everything is just mine to do how I see fit. So, I have been trying to slowly adjust and change some things to be my way....but it has been hard to fit some of that in with the other job duties. I feel like I am starting to find my groove there, but it will take a bit of time.

I will try to post more later.

Thursday, March 29, 2007


I am already starting to see how this new job is going to be a refining one for me. We had our very first staff meeting today and I think I bawled through half of it. Pastor Brian was just going to step in and talk to us staff briefly before we had our meeting about upcoming events at the church etc. and it turned into a three-hour hanky-fest. He was talking about the cost of following the Lord and how we don't want to truly pay the cost. He has just come back from a trip to Turkey and has seen how true missionaries live and the cost that they pay, as well as the cost that disciples had to pay. And the bottom line is: I have not been willing to pay the cost.

There are so many things that I just hold onto so dearly and with clenched fists.....I fight to keep them and do not want to give them up. My time, my reputation, my house. You name it, and it is something I have held onto. No, the Lord is not asking me to be perfect at this yet. But, if I truly want revival to break out, if I truly want others to know the Lord, if I truly want those things it could very well cost me everything.

Giving up what is really nothing in order to gain everything is the truth of the matter. Yet I somehow still look at those things that are "nothing" and think that somehow they have merit. Where do I get that idea?

My life should be lived to serve, to come low, to obey at first ask, to love others, and I see that I do very little of that. Even today at my job, having opportunity after opportunity to just be less of "me" and more of "Jesus" to my co-workers, I am convicted of how little I did just that. How much harder to bless and serve those who are not easy to love. Yet those are the very people who need it most.

I am pressed this evening, and need more of Jesus to meet me here.

Friday, March 23, 2007

Pictures from Korea

Back from Korea

I am back from my trip to Korea and after sleeping thirteen hours last night, I am feeling pretty rested right now. I have a ton of laundry to do and a lot of unpacking, plus I am in desperate need of grocery shopping, but I am back!

The trip was amazing and I feel like I am probably different in a lot of ways, but there is SO MUCH I need to process through right now.

We did two three-day "conferences" in Seoul. One was at a church with about 50 women, and the other was at a YWAM school with about 120 women. Both conferences had similar formats: Day one talking about repentance and sin and how those things affect our original design and hearing from the Lord. Then we prayed and got everyone's original design. (yes two teams prayed for 120 people's original design in one afternoon!!! plus we had to use a translator which made everything take twice as long). The next day we talked about strongholds, and what they are and what forges them. We then walked them through repenting of them. The last day was the funnest when we got to talk about hearing from the Lord and then let them all break into groups and pray for each other.

There is so much to process through about what invitation to come back in the fall, an invitaiton from a Chinese pastor to come to China, the generosity and hospitality of the Korean people....and on and on. I will try to write more as I can. It is good to be back home though.

Monday, March 12, 2007


I have decided the reason I love spring so much is because it is the promise of a new start. You know? Birds are back singing their little hearts out. FLowers are blooming and their brightness lights up the dim corners of a dreary garden. Even the scent of grass cut for the first time in months just smells nice. Everything just seems to be singing praises to the King....and I am singing right along with them.

I got to spend several hours outside today working in the yard. It was pouring down rain yesterday, so I spent yesterday packing in hopes that I could be outside today. I pruned a bunch of plants in dire need of having dead branches or branches heading in the wrong direction, did some weeding and general cleanup of branches so that I could mow. I mowed for the first time this year and it is amazing to me always how much cleaner the yard looks with a nice trim. I also sprayed off the back deck and had dreams of the BBQs we will have back there this summer. Not everything is blooming, but it is all so spring-like outside. It just lifed my spirits. I also got to plant a few plants I had purchased at the flower show in Feb. as well as the roses mom and dad bought me for a VERY early birthday present. They are going to look beautiful when they are in full bloom.

I leave for Korea tomorrow and I am getting more excited about the trip as it draws closer. I have been praying and praying for the Lord to give me a deeper heart for the Korean women I am going to meet and minister to. Unlike England, Korea has never been a place I have dreamed of going to. Don't get me wrong, now that I am going, I am super excited. But, it is not a place I have really ever thought of visiting before. Most likely the next time I post, I will have returned from Korea. I am taking my camera, so pictures will follow!

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Take THAT Fear

I have had major victory over fear this week. I know it to be true because the things that I was anxious about and fretting over a week ago, are now no longer an issue....I have had freedom!

Example a. Follow-up class to our women's conference. Last week I taught our follow-up class and it went great. Once again I had way over-prepared and had probably 50 minutes worth of teaching or more to fit into half an hour. So, this week, instead of worrying all week about finding tim to prepare for this week, or working on it off and on all week, I just took the evening this evening and it took about an hour or so, but I am ready for this Saturday's class! Wow, how easy is that?

Example b. Korea. I woke up a few weeks ago from a nightmare (see previous post about weird dreams) regarding the trip with my heart pounding and all sweaty. Some of this was my own sin, some of this was intercession for the trip that needed to happen, but I am completely at peace and more excited about the whole thing than I have been since we first heard about going. I think I will get even more excited once I actually begin packing (tomorrow). Right now it just seems really surreal.

Example c. New job. I am so over the top about this that I actually took some of my tax return money and bought a few new things to wear. Since I will be the first person you see when you walk in the door of the church office AND since it is an office setting, I thought I should be at least a little professional looking. Not every day, since it is still a pretty casual place, but more than I have been for rolling around on the floors with preschoolers. Also, I needed some spring clothes since last year's spring clothes do not fit me! I am about 20 lbs. below last spring's weight, and even about 10-15 lbs below last summer's weight, so summer clothes might be in the works as well. I do not even own a single pair of shorts other than workout shorts! I can't wear shorts in the office, but they will be nice to have.

In other news....Lora is getting ready to move out at the end of the month to start her own house. Kristy, who has been sharing quarters with me upstairs will get her room. Not sure yet if I will have someone move in upstairs with me. I might just go a while and have just the three of us. It is nice between roommates to have the upstairs to myself. Plus, I am looking into the whole remodel thing up there again. I know it sounds crazy, but I am seriously considering it. If I do that, it will be better to just have me up there. We'll see. Financially things are a bit different now then they were the last time I seriously thought about it. However, there is a guy at church who is a contractor (not the same one I looked into last time) and I trust him to give me a fair quote.

Spring fever has also hit me quite hard. I can hardly wait to get myself out into the garden again. I have done a bit of work out there, but every day I go on what I call my "garden tour" just to see what is blooming, about to bloom, or getting ready to put on a serious show of leaves bursting forth. I am itching to get some of my plants moved about, and do some pruning, but I am just enjoying the fact that it literally smells like spring. The other day it was 67 degrees here and clear and I just drove around with my windows down and the Mariner's on the radio (Spring Training game, but still!!) and I felt so great. There is such an appreciation for me this time every year. The days are longer, it is warming up, plants are blooming, and winter is coming to an end. I am not a huge fan of the months of Jan. and Feb. due to their gloominess, but I KNOW that I appreciate spring that much more because of those months. And I also know that for those plants to put on the "show" that they do each year, they also need those months to rest. Isn't it amazing how our Lord knew that even plants needed a time to rest. I could learn a lot from that!

Well, next time I post it MIGHT be after returning from Korea. We'll see. If there is any other big news, I might get a chance to blog, otherwise, .....Korea, here I come!

Saturday, March 03, 2007


I am now officially a "retired" preschool director. I had my last day with the 3-year-olds on Thursday and my last day with the 4-year-olds on Friday. We had a bit of a "party" on Thursday. I got some flowers and cards from the kids, but and even bigger "party" on Friday. This came complete with yummy brownie bites, gifts, balloons etc. It was so cute. I don't think a lot of them really realize that I am done there. I don't think *I* fully realize that I am done there. I think it will hit me more on Monday when I don't have to get up early. I pretty much held it together emotionally until the very end when I got a picture book from Erika, and then when I had to say goodbye. I will miss those kids so much. It is amazing how much I love them!

We also hired someone at my other part time job. I start training her on Monday. It should be good to transition out of that job, too. I love working with all the guys at that church and in the office, but I am for sure ready to move on.

I leave for Korea a week from Tuesday. I will be gone for nine days. We are spending our whole trip in Seoul. However, we have discovered that we will be staying in a hotel. That is good! I don't think I have had a ton of time to really process that I am leaving in basically a week for a whole different country. If you think about it, be praying. I have had some funky weird dreams lately regarding the trip. I won't go into details, but let's just say I have a feeling intercession is needed!

I have not been able to get a hold of any recordings of my talk from the conference. I keep hearing from people how great it was, though. And that is encouraging. We are still continuing with our four-week follow up classes and I am teaching the first of them today. I am not as nervous at all as I was for the conference, but I am still I think overly worried about it. This has been such an area of needing breakthrough! I have been so fearful! I HATE it! It is not like me to be such a woman of fear. And, it is fear based in absolutely nothing! I am afraid of messing up, afraid of saying something wrong, afraid of people saying that I am not a good teacher and shouldn't be doing it any more, afraid that this is my ONE opportunity to teach and I'll never get to do it again, afraid of what leadership will think about me, afraid that people will change their minds about me, blah, blah, blah, blah.....ICK! And, it is not just this one area that I am fearful about....Korea, my new job, being a good small group leader....

The bottom line is, that I have not been trusting the Lord. Period. There is no other way to put it. Not only that, I have been so concerned about what others think of me, and idolizing their opinions that I have not cared at all what the Lord says about how I am doing. This has led to so much self-focus, and I have wounded at least one friend with my actions. You know when you are consumed with what people think of you, you at times hurt those around you. This is what has happened. In my zeal to be noticed and thought highly of by those who's opinion "matters" I have pushed away those who love me most. I have needed to ask forgiveness a lot lately. I have been humbled.

If you are someone in my life that I have overlooked lately, I extend my sincerest apology.

Monday, February 19, 2007


I knocked it out of the park, to quote a friend. My talk(s) on Saturday were great! I was nervous off and on throughout the week leading up and even Saturday morning had flashes of being nervous. But, as soon as I got the mic and started talking it was just so natural to be up there sharing. This is how you know it is a gift from God and not yourself. Those times when you just do something and don't really know how, and can't really explain it, but you just don't have to work at it and it just flows. Not that I didn't think and plan my talk ahead, but after all that prep to just have it was not me speaking up there! I even told some jokes and was able to speak without hardly using my notes.

Several people told me I brought them to tears. I got a standing ovation and had many people who were not even present tell me that they heard about my talk.

I am hoping that it was recorded so that I have it to listen to it and maybe even upload it.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

VDay Date, Job, Conference and other items

I had a date for Valentine's Day. Actually, I had a date with FOUR guys for Valentine's Day. Their names were Caedon, Caleb, Ethan and Evan and the oldest one was five, the youngest just three months. Caedon and Caleb are two boys at the school and their mom invited Erika and I over for dinner a few weeks ago. We thought we'd be babysitting while she and her husband when out to dinner, but NO! She said she and Eric, her husband, were wanting to teach her boys "how to treat a lady." So, when we arrived, Caedon and Caleb had a three presents sitting out for Erika and I, which he wanted us to open right away. Inside were Ghiradehli (mangled spelling, I know) chocolates, a heart-shaped plate that was pink and said 'love' on it, and a matching pink coffee mug. We were then offered "hors d'ourves" by the boys and Carrie (mom) taught them how to assist a lady into her chair and prompted the boys to ask us fun questions through the dinner and offer us more food and water. It had to be the cutest thing ever. I even got a kiss from Caedon at the end of the "date." It just made the whole day so fun. I have not had a single pang of any sort over my lack of a date more appropriate in age at all. It was the best.

I also talked to Chris yesterday and it looks like I start at the office on March 27th training with the current office manager, Gretchen, and then off on my own from the beginning of April forward. Should be fun. I have not had a ton of time to think about the whole thing with the conference coming up, and then the trip to Korea happening in the middle of the month too. The month between now and the end of March is proving to be one of major changes.

Lora, roommate, is also moving out during the month. She is starting up a new house with another friend where kids can come over and hang out after school etc. This is really her heart for ministry. So, I am down to two again, and looking for a third. Not stressed at all about it, but just wondering who it will be!

The conference is coming together. I am going tomorrow afternoon to buy food. One of my two talks is comletely done, and the other is just in need of some slight tweaking. Whew. I think will work on it for about 15 minutes tonight and then just take the night off of anything but crashing on the couch. I am more and more at peace with everything, and so that is great! Keep praying though!
Hope you are blessed too!

Monday, February 12, 2007

Whoa Nelly

This week is proving to be one where I will probably look back at the end of it and say "Thank you, Lord for pulling me through." Our women's conference is this Friday and Saturday. I am speaking at it twice. Considering that I used to do public speaking in front of hundreds of people, I am surprisingly nervous about it. This is the first time that the topic (women's health) will be something close to my heart and the audience will be one that I care about their opinions. When I did public speaking before, it was always in front of strangers and it was on topics I don't care about nearly as much as I care about this one. Some day, when I have spoken in front of people a lot (because I WILL do that someday), I will look back on this and smile about how the Lord prepared me by using this conference. Regardless, I am probably over-preparing and worrying about this for no reason, but I would love your prayers for peace and clarity as I prepare for those talks. If I had a ton of time to prepare, I would probably feel less stressed. However, I am also in charge of food for the conference, and working full time and all of my other committments too. I am feeling nervous about the talks and I just need to release the whole thing to the Lord. I AM called to this!


Saturday, February 03, 2007

All but the details

It's all done but for the of the end of this month, I will officially no longer be director of a school, but will be working in the office of our church. Details about how that will all work out are still being figured out, but it is basically happening. I will be working Tues-Fri in the office and making sure stuff runs at church on Sat. as well. I am not sure the exact tasks I will be doing, but there it is!

I have moved on a bit from the sadness earlier this week and I am now MUCH more excited about what this will entail and what it will look like. Suffice to say, I am stoked!!

Korea is also still being figured out too. WE have been having struggles with trying to figure out the details of it all and at times I have wondered if we are even going to be going. No tickets have been bought, we have no exact dates, we have no idea what we will be, it just feels either a. really opposed or b. like we are maybe not supposed to go and are working at odds against the Lord. I am sure a little bit of "a" is in there regardless, but I am starting to wonder if this trip is even going to happen, it just feels so laborious to get the details hammered out. We'll see.

Our women's health conference is happening too. It will be the weekend of Feb. 16-18. I am giving my testimony one evening and teaching a breakout session on another evening. I am not as scared as I was, and feel overall a sense of this being something I HAVE to do. It has been fun to be on the planning team too.

I think the overall theme of the last few weeks has been: I cannot believe how much fear and insignificance are still in my "game." I have been so fearful about all of these changes, and the thing that keeps running through my head is: "Me?" Not that I shouldn't have a healthy fear in there or have a dose of humility, but it has not been false humility, it has been a very real sense of "I am not certain why I get to be the one to do these things." And the fear has been just flat out a lack of trusting the Lord. It is good to have these things surface, I cannot move forward into what I am to do with them still there. Gotta get em out!

Wednesday, January 31, 2007


It is always a marvel to me how circumstances in life can be such a mix of pain and pleasure. I have heard once that the particular area of the brain that houses pain receptors is thisclose to the part the has pleasure receptors too. I know that this is referring to physical pain/pleasure, but I think there is a spiritual context here too.

I have now been officially asked to come and work for the church. I have not given my answer yet (so no spilling the beans any New Song readers), as I am to meet with our Associate Pastor, Chris, later this week to discuss some things. But, I am almost certain my answer will be "yes." So, the "pleasure" part of this is that I will be able to more greatly pursue a part of my heart's passion and move into a deeper work of my calling that has seemed so far out of reach until now. I will get to help see our ministry spread more globally and more locally. I will be on the front lines of all that the Lord is doing in our midst. I am incredibly blessed and excited to do so and more than a wee bit scared, but that is a subject for a different post.

The pain part comes in, and really, I have been teary all day about it, because the talk has been about me starting in April. That means leaving the kids at the school soon, like my last day being right before I leave for Korea. That means not seeing the school actually become a school and being a part of the kid's lives any more. That tears my heart up just a bit. I have fallen in love with those kids and I just can't seem to think of leaving them. How my heart has changed in the last six months!!

One of the things the Lord has said about me is that I have an ability to be a "foundation layer." I can go into a place/situation/etc. and lay a solid foundation so that others can build off of what I have done and then I can move on to the next thing.

The deal is that this is the first thing that I have actually done that with and leaving the school in its "infancy" is a lot harder than I thought it would be. I feel similar to someone who is handing their child off to someone else to raise. Not that I can even begin to comprehend the pain of that, but that is what I liken it to.

The same goes for my job at Harborview. I am JUST starting to feel like I have my feet under me as far as what I am doing and getting things straightened out, and to think about leaving pains me a bit. Will the new person do XYZ right? Will they be able to handle ___? Will they have the right vision for the job etc.?

Now all of this is simply me stressing and worrying right now. I just want to do the right thing, and if that means leaving those things for the next thing, I will do it with joy. I am being called right now to exercise my trust in the Lord that He has all of my questions answered and all of the things I am thinking about under control. That feels good to know. I trust Him completely....look how things have turned out since London? How hard that was yet the bounty of fruit in my life that has happened by my obedience. So, I know as long as my heart is to obey, things will be fine.

I am just a little sad today, and I am certain that is OK. Ecclesiastes talks about there being a time to mourn, and I am mourning a bit today.

Monday, January 22, 2007

I almost forgot a BUNCH of stuff

This weekend was also full of new things regarding the school and Korea, and just stuff in general.

Let me start with Thursday night: Discipleship night at church I got there early so that I could speak with Jena about our class on health. I told her some of the details on what Peggy, Linda and I had received in prayer and she was gung-ho. What we are looking at doing is having a women's "conference" on a Friday and Saturday and follow-up with a four to six week class after the conference. She is still talking about me giving my testimony. I must say, I am filled both with complete and utter excitement and probably equal measure of terror. It is absolutely what I am made to do (teach and preach) but it still fills me with fear when I think of doing it. BUT, it is a good area to have some major breakthrough in....someday I will be doing this regularly, so it's time to get on the ball!

Thursday was also just convicting because we are starting to go through a series of videos put out by Reinhard Bonnke (do a google search on him, you'll be amazed) on evangelism and the love of the Father. Just so convicted that night on my continued lack of understanding regarding Jesus' love for us, and how evangelism is a calling for ALL believers. I had an encounter there with a gal named Julie who woks at the homeless shelter here in Tacoma and she was saying how inadequate she felt to do the job. Now, knowing this gal, she is the MOST equipped person I know for the job that she is doing. I just felt prompted by the Lord to encourage her and tell her so. I didn't think much of it at the time, as my words were simple and fairly brief, but I found out later from a mutual friend that they completely ministered to her. It is cool what the Lord does with things when your heart is to obey.

Saturday, Erika and I (preschool co-director) are helping in the preschool room at church to get it "ship-shape" after some changing that has happened in kid's ministry. So, I was not in the service. But, I did catch Pastor Brian after the service and asked him about the Korea trip. (which, by the way, is more than likely happening after deciding the only way both Erika and I can go is to switch Spring Break to a that last week in March so we can go.) It turns out that the trip is a women's prayer conference. Brian had met the lady in charge of it on a previous trip to the Kona YWAM base and she had emailed him to see if he and Christy could come. Brian told her they couldnt' and that the money would be too expensive for most people. To this she responded that they would PAY for four people to come. So, believing this to be from the Lord, Brian prayed and heard the names of the four of us who are going.

So, as we are talking Brian says to me: "Can I just hand this thing over to you and you can coordinate with the gal in Korea to get it all set up?" So, now not only am I going, not only will I be helping to teach and lead the trip when we GET there, I am in charge of GETTING us there! Basically Brian believes that the four of us are ready for the next step: doing the whole deal ourselves!! Holy Hooky-Lau (to quote Erika).

Then as if this isn't enough, Brian starts talking to me about the preschool and how necessary it feels to have a Kindergarten next year and can we work on there being one? To which I answer, Yes, we are already working on it! Kyle G. is helping us get everything set up.

Then, Brian says basically: are you sure you are called to the school and not to more international stuff? A bunch of us were just talking and thinking Kyle might be great for the school and you could come and work for us at the office and do international ministry. How would you feel about that?

Actually, at peace. That has always, always, always been my heart. From the time I was a little gal and took my first trip anywhere (which was Phoenix, by the way), I have always felt two things: missions, pastor. And, what he is telling me is that sooner rather than later, I might get to do BOTH! Now, all of this stuff about working for the church vs. the school is ALL just talk right now. So for those of you from New Song who read this, please know that NOTHING is officially happening with it. It is just crazy to think about!!

I could hardly sleep Saturday night thinking about traveling and what that could mean, but also fretting: "am I ready to give up this school?" The Lord has absolutely made me fall in love with these kids, and I am not sure I am ready to give them up. I also feel like could I really leave the school when it is in such a "baby" phase, when it's so new and barely getting started? So, I am still wrestling with these questions and wondering what purpose the Lord migh have in having me give so much to start something, only to leave it after such a short time. One of my original design posts is that I am a foundation layer, but is this foundation truly set?

Sunday Erika and I met to plan for our week, and then met with the generals of the preschool room to share some observations. After this meeting, there was another for all children's workers. Now, I am not on a ministry team, but I just felt I needed to stay. So many encouraging thngs are happening at our children's ministry, and I have been battling the feeling that it is insignificant....and just felt the Lord say: if you want victory in knowing the significance of children's ministry, you need to stay. Lots of stuff about the school: how we need one to be able to minister to these kids all week.

Couldn't sleep Sunday night either and I came into the preschool today to hear Erika had not either. So, when Christy came to pick Joshua up, we snagged her, lots of good stuff about how we can't look back after we have made a decision because if we have done it with the right heart, it will be blessed. Good stuff.

Anyway, I hope you all are having a blessed day!

George Mueller

I have been directed by the Lord to do some "George Mueller" type praying this year. For those of you who do not know who he is, he is man who ran an orphanage back in the 1800s. With this orphanage, they pretty much lived day to day. George was an incredible man of faith, however. He would pray, not tell anyone what he needed and then sit back and watch as the Lord provided.

And so, while not listing here what I need, I would love to chronical the year with this as a theme.....what have I received that I have done nothing but pray about. So, keep an eye on this blog for some miracles to occur!

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Korea Anyone?

It is funny, on my last post I mentioned that I just felt like something was about to happen...well, it has. I got an email today from Pastor Brian. The two YWAM bases in South Korea want a couple of folks to come out and teach and lead a prayer ministry time for them this March. I have been asked to go. Not just go, but lead and teach the time. PLUS, this will all be paid for. It will be a ten-day trip, three days in Seoul and three days in Pusan with travel time in there too. All paid for! PLUS, getting to do the teaching! Woo hoo! I mean, I think this trip will actually be more for my own growth and breakthrough than the Koreans'!

In addition, I with two other women from our church have put together a whole class on health and nutrition etc. stuff and have submitted it to Brian as something we might take the women through this Spring. I have not heard back yet, but Jena Hippe, Associate Pastor's wife, is ALL on board with it. I am not sure whether I will be teaching any of it or not, but it is all just so exciting.

Sometimes I just look at my life and say to myself "Really, Lord? I get all of this!" I am so blessed!

Monday, January 15, 2007

What's Goin' On

I sometimes feel like my blog has become more of a "what is Erin doing?" kind of place rather than a "how is Erin doing?" kind of place. I hope that changes. Though I know that most of "how" I am doing relates directly to "what" I am doing. If that makes sense.

I have been feeling pings of something brewing. I am not sure what,.....just a general sense that there is something more. I am not sure if this is disappointment with life right now, or just the general feeling that I am on the verge of something. Not sure yet.

I'll write more later, but wanted to just say Hi for now.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007