Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Hellooooooooooo! Is anybody out there?

It has been ages since I blogged and there are a few reasons why.
1. I was out of town for a month.
2. Blogger is grouchy and messes up my pictures and my paragraphs and I spend hours trying to fix all of the random issues.
3. Having 4 kids means constant motion- no time to sit and process life.
4. I'm pregnant and tired.
We went to Disney World and had the best time. Mom and I did most of it without Tim and I am still stunned we survived it. 8 straight days of park hopping. I thought my legs were going to fall off on the last day. Our favorite park was Seaworld's Aquatica Waterpark. It was a blast! We got there right before the summer vacation rush so it wasn't crowded until the last day or two. The last couple days were hot and starting to get really crowded. I was ready to get away from the heat and crowds. From there, we went to our condo rental in Florida for 3 weeks. It is so relaxing. The total opposite of Disney. You wear your jammies until you decide to put on your bathing suit. Then you take your bathing suit off, shower and put your jammies back on. The boys are constantly playing. I took our school stuff there and we did school in the afternoons. That is one of my favorite things about homeschool. Your classroom can be wherever you want it to be.
Mom and I were having a great time... UNTIL.... we got a phone call that my dad had been in a serious car accident and they were trying to get him out of his vehicle that was upside down with an electrical pole down beside his car.


That is all we knew.


We didn't know if he was alive or dead.


I thought he had died.


Time stopped and my world began to spin.


Was this the day I would lose my dad?


I called my sister in a panic giving her the broken pieces of information and telling her to try and go find the accident even though I only had a street name. I cannot describe how scary the next hours were as we received bits of information. He had hit a telephone pole, flipped his SUV, knocked down an electrical pole all while he was pinned in by his leg. God was merciful and spared his life. The seat belt and airbags broke his shoulder pretty badly and 2 ribs. He had surgery on his shoulder and was in a lot of pain for a week or so but is doing better every day. I will never forget watching my mom, as we were 11 hours away, and her grace as she walked through the valley of the shadow of death. I remember sensing a complete yieldedness in her spirit. She was yielded to God during the time we didn't know if my dad had lived and THAT will always leave a mark on me. I want a heart that is yielded to God even when I am scared out of my mind. She has a quiet strength that is beautiful and that I desire.
I praise God for how He saved my dad and has given us more time together on this side of heaven. If the Lord was trying to get my family's attention, He got it. We are listening now! Wow- how suddenly life can change.
I got mom on the soonest flight home to be with dad so she had to leave 2 weeks sooner than planned but Tim came down and then 3 of my girlfriends and 2 additional little boys. It was a full and crazy condo but it was full of life! I was away from Tim for about 2 weeks of the 4. I missed him so much. He is the glue in our family. He does so much. He is a servant. He cooks, cleans, bathes children, brushes teeth, reads bedtime stories, and on and on. When he is not there, there is a huge void in my heart and in the CHORES! We flew a babysitter down for a few days on the cheap new Vision Airline that is $39 each way so we were able to go on dates. We had a great time. We talked and prayed and talked and prayed and read the Word and ate and ATE and ATE. It was so refreshing for our marriage.
We brainstormed about the ministry God has entrusted to us and how to prepare for the next conference. I am very excited about this one. I pray God opens the flood gates and brings the girls. This one has the greatest potential to reach the most girls with the message of God's love for them and His beautiful plan for their lives. It will be at Calvary Chapel Chattanooga which has a fabulous new building and loads of room. One of my BFFs Jennie is joining the group and will be teaching at this one. She is teaching on the character of God and has titled her message "Who's Your DADDY?". So fun!
My heart is to cover Titus 2:3-5 as thoroughly as possible...

"These older women must train the younger women to *love their husbands and their children, *to live wisely and be pure, to *work in their homes, to *do good, and to *be submissive to their husbands. Then they will not bring shame on the word of God."

Please pray for me as I prepare. I always want to quit. I am very aware of my weaknesses and there is so much spiritual opposition involved in presenting this message. I am a WIMP. But, God has called me to do this and He will train my hands for war.

"Praise be to the LORD my Rock, who trains my hands for war, my fingers for battle." Ps 144:1

It takes an army of people to pull one of these conferences off. I am so grateful for the dozens of women who come along beside me with a heart to disciple the next generation of women. What I would have given to have had access to the information presented in these conferences! The speakers are amazing. The music is OUT OF THIS WORLD- literally. If you are a single girl who reads my blog, COME. Drive to Chattanooga for this. The message and God's Word WILL change your life. If you are struggling with depression or loneliness or an eating disorder or sexual sin, PLEASE COME. I will give you a VIP seat... as will God. He loves you.
I am working on the schedule and when I have it, I will post all of the speakers and their topics. The information I DO have is that it is Aug 5 (doors open at 5 and close at 11) and Aug 6(9 am until the last girl wants to leave). We will pour into you as much truth and love as we possibly can in 2 days. The cost is $15 to cover the notebooks and lunch.
Spread the Word about this. I don't know when I will be able to do another one because of sweet baby #5 coming in October.
Speaking of sweet baby #5, I am getting a little more used to the idea that it is a boy (although I still think they may be wrong). We have a name we are praying about and it makes him more real. The name we like was inspired by this verse...











"See, the Lord is coming with fire, and his swift chariots roar like a whirlwind."
Is 66:15
I love seeing the strength of our God! Jesus Christ is NOT on the losing team! I pray that this child will represent His strength.






I am 21 weeks. I look forward to feeling his kicks on a more regular basis but I treasure each one. Isn't God amazing that He truly can knit a child together in our wombs? What an honor to be a mom. What a joy. What WORK! What reward!
I am homeschooling through the summer because I love it and the boys do too and I want to keep them ahead. If I keep them ahead, then I never stress about being behind. And, I will have to take a month or two off when the baby is born this fall.
Homeschooling is such a blessing. I am so thankful God has asked me to homeschool. It can be very overwhelming but I love walking through life with my children and cheering them on. I love knowing their strengths and their weaknesses. I love hearing them pray and GROW in their prayer lives. I love learning the Word with them. I LOVE LOVE LOVE teaching them the Word. I get that feeling often while memorizing or studying Scripture with them, "THIS is what I was created to do".
My daughter Hope is a wild woman. I have to homeschool during her naps or it isn't going to happen. She is full-throttle. Not afraid of anything. She hates bows but loves shoes. She thinks Bubba is her personal comedian. She bullies her brothers. She will stand in front of people until they say, "ooohhh, what a cute baby" and then moves on. She gets her confidence from her daddy. I envy that in her. She doesn't have an insecure bone in her body. I pray that, as she ages, her inner security will be strengthened as she understands WHO she belongs to and His calling on her life.








Every night, I pray this verse over her....
"That our daughters may be as pillars, Sculptured in palace style" Ps 144:12
Isn't that beautiful?
I want God to sculpture her heart in palace style so that she will be ready to serve in His temple and make it more beautiful. That He will make her fit for His service!
The first half of the verse, I pray over my boys...

"May our sons flourish in their youth like well-nurtured plants." Ps 144:12
I imagine this as I teach them the Word that it is watering them like well-nurtured plants. Oh, that God would grow them up to be OAKS of righteousness!

I have written about this many times but my burden seems to get heavier about it:








Be careful what "CHRISTIAN" BOOKS YOU READ!








Some of the most praised contemporary Christian authors are abandoning the Word of God and placing academics above the Word. It is so dangerous. Please take a break from reading Christian books and get in the Word. If you aren't in the Word, you won't have discernment and you will get tricked. The enemy is subtle and he is crafty. He wants you to put your trust in man and his writings. DON'T. A MAJOR concern I see right now is the teaching of replacement theology. That is a doctrine that teaches that the Church has replaced Israel and thus Israel no longer has the promises from the Abrahamic Covenant. This is SO DANGEROUS! Please find out where a pastor stands on Israel. I honestly believe that if they forsake the clear promises of God to Israel, then they cannot rightly divide other parts of Scripture and it gets messy quick. BE CAREFUL. “Ultimately what you believe about Israel and Zion will affect ALL other areas of your theology". Know the difference between the Abrahamic Covenant and the Mosaic Covenant. The Abrahamic Covenant was NOT conditional. Do a quick study of Gen 15 and you will see that it was God who signed that covenant. God had put Abraham in a deep sleep. He CANNOT break the covenant because he didn't sign it. God has a plan for the Jewish Nation and nothing can change that. It is based on His faithfulness, not theirs. As is our salvation.
"God is not a man that he should lie, nor a son of man that He should change His mind. Does He speak and then not act? Does he promise and not fulfill?... He has blessed and I cannot change it. " Numbers 23:19

Be careful of any teacher that teaches that Israel is a "covenant-breaking nation who has forfeited it's inheritance". That is dangerous doctrine and leads to more dangerous doctrines. I know that most of you are like "who cares about Israel?".
God does.
"I will bless those who bless you, And I will curse him who curses you" Gen 12
God said, as long as the sun, moon, and stars shine that Israel will be a nation before him!
"This is what the LORD says,
he who appoints the sun to shine by day,
who decrees the moon and stars to shine by night,
who stirs up the sea so that its waves roar—
the LORD Almighty is his name:
“Only if these decrees vanish from my sight,” declares the LORD,
“will the descendants of Israel ever cease
to be a nation before me.”
Jer 31:35-36

I cannot believe teachers have the nerve to deny these Scriptures when there is so much at stake! No way I would take that risk when you are dealing with blessings and curses from God! Our President is doing the same stuff in our political relationship with Israel. If we turn against Israel, we are toast!











We are living in crazy times but exciting times as well as (I believe) we are ushering in the King of Kings. Time is running out! We will be seeing Him face-to-face soon! :)
Be careful in Christian book stores. There are so many false teachers and Lifeway Christian Bookstore doesn't do a screening for false teachers.



YOU DO.



Test the Spirits! See if they are from God. Be a student of the Word! The enemy's tactics are getting trickier and trickier. I don't care how popular a teacher is, if he abandons the authority of the Word, RUN! Another popular author just came out endorsing evolution. Now, are these salvation issues? No. But there is a reason the Bible says to...

"Watch your life and doctrine closely. Persevere in them, because if you do, you will save both yourself and your hearers." 1 Tim 4:16

I love all of you! I am sorry I get so fired up about the Word of God. It is my life. It is water in this dry land. Ask God to bring it to life for you. You will walk into a whole new world of treasures and riches. You will walk into a wardrobe where Jesus Christ dwells.

One last thing, I am getting ready to do a discipleship series via conference call and would love to invite you all to join me! I am trying out some new books I found. You can check them out HERE.


There are 4 books in the series.


"Milk" for New Christians


"Meat" for Growing Christians


"Bread" for Hungry Christians



"Fish" for Witnessing Christians


Come with me on this weekly journey through Scripture every Sunday night for an hour at 9:00 EST. It doesn't matter if you have never cracked your Bible. This is a safe place and a perfect opportunity to grow in your faith and develop a strong foundation. It also doesn't matter if you have studied the Bible for years. We all need to be reminded of things and equipped to disciple new believers. Email me if you are interested in the Bible Study or joining us at the women's conference in August! I pray that you are growing in your faith and falling more in love with Jesus Christ!
Gotta run! No time to proof-read. Forgive the typos!



Steph

6 comments:

lots_of_love_four_kids said...

Missed you! Would love to Bible study. :)

-jenni

B said...

I just adore you - you're such an example and encouragement to me. Thank you for every word.

Victoria said...

Thank you for sharing this! Btw, do you use the updated version of blogger? If not, I think it would fixd all of your issues with pictures and posting...

Teresa @ Grammy Girlfriend said...

Always love reading your posts...and seeing pictures of your beautiful family

Anonymous said...

Hi Steph! Would you post some more info about your tele-conference Bible study? Are you considering taping the sessions and posting them to the web (similarly to the purity conference lessons)? Thanks and blessings to you!

Traci@ Beneath My Heart said...

Hey Stephanie,
I just wondered if you have ever tried publishing your posts through Windows Live Writer?
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This is not an advertisement. :)
Just a fellow blogger wanting to make life a little easier for you. :)
Here's a link if you are interested:
http://explore.live.com/windows-live-writer?os=other

Traci
BeneathMyHeart