Thursday, December 27, 2007

"Be Much with Me"

This is another quote from the book that I am passionately enjoying! :) I thought I would share a piece of a section that I read yesterday that challenged and confirmed what God is doing in my life...ponder it! Love to you all!

"Be more with Me, and let My Spirit pervade your spirit, and then you shall be more influenced by Me than by the world around you. But be prepared for the fact that you will then be of a different mind and attitude than those around you, and be willing to accept the difference and be able to ignore misunderstanding.
For many will not accept a message of warning, because they have set their own personal ambition against the will of God, and they are so intent upon their own pursuits that they refuse to tolerate the thought of possible interference of any kind.
But you, beloved, be much with Me, for there is a great and heavy burden on My heart. For God takes no pleasure in the death of the wicked. My long-suffering and grace have continued because I deeply desire that all should come to repentance."

This is something that I have been pondering among many other things in life right now and am desperately trying to learn the lesson within it. :) This my friends is not the lesson in and of itself...for it is just an added aspect to the picture. I find that as I read it, it gives comfort and added insight to what the Lord is already teaching me through His Word. I wish that time would permit me to go into further detail however I would take up so much blog space and fear that I would bore you with the details and have decided to leave details out. However, they may show up as the Lord continues to work in days to come! :) For many, know that I too am learning the lessons that God has called me to learn and desire for you all to know that life is not perfect....even for Elisabeth :)

Lord's richest blessings upon you!

Monday, December 24, 2007

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Just a thought for those that read my family received this poem or quote, whichever preferred, in the masses of mail that we gratefully receive every year and it was so profound to me that I wanted to share it with you all as you celebrate Christmas with your families and friends! :)

My Birthday

As you well know, we are getting closer to my birthday. Every year there is a celebration in my honor and I think that this year the celebration will be repeated. During this time there are many people shopping for gifts, there are many TV commercials, special songs are heard on the radio, and all around the world everyone is talking about my birthday.

It is really very nice to know, that at least once a year, some people think of me. As you know, the celebration of my birthday began many years ago. At first people seemed to understand and be thankful of all that I did for them, but in these times, few seem to know the reason for the celebration. Family and friends get together and have a lot of fun, but they don't know the meaning of the celebration.

I remember that last year there was a great feast in my honor. The dinner table was full of delicious foods, pastries, fruits, assorted nuts and chocolates. The decorations were exquisite and there were many, many beautiful wrapped gifts. But, do you want to know something? I wasn't invited. I was the guest of honor and they didn't remember to send me an invitation. The party was for me, but when that great day came, I was left outside. They closed the door in my face. And I so wanted to be with them and share their table!

One person they did invite was this big fat man all dressed in red with a long white beard. He came into the room yelling "Ho-Ho-Ho!" He sat on the sofa and all the children ran to him saying, "Santa Claus, Santa Claus"--as if the party were in his honor! At 12 midnight all the people began to hug each other and share gifts. They opened them one by one with great expression. When all had been opened, I looked to see if, maybe, there was one for me.

In truth, that didn't surprise me because every year it gets worse. People only remember the food, the gifts, the parties and they forget about me. This Christmas I would love it if you'd allow me to enter into your celebration. I want you to remember that almost two thousand years ago I came to this world to give my life to you, on the cross, to save you. Today, I only want you to believe this with all your heart.

I want to share something with you. As many didn't invite me to their party, I will have my own celebration , a spectacular party, a grandiose party that no one has ever imagined. I'm still making the final arrangements. Today I am sending out many invitations and there is an invitation for you. I want to know if you wish to attend and I will make a reservation for you and write your name with golden letters in my great guest book. Only those on the guest list will be invited to the party. Those who don't answer the invite, will be left outside.

Be prepared, because when all is ready, you will be part of my great party. I love you,


-Unknown author

As you can see this is truly an evangelism tool, a great one at that. Yet I was struck by the true fact of our lives being so caught up in the materialism of Christmas. We have lost the meaning of Christmas and I am sad to say that I am part of that. However, this is a great reminder of what Christmas is all about, not Santa, not presents, not food, not football, not selfishness, not anything else, but the TRUE gift and that being the birth of our precious LORD and SAVIOR JESUS CHRIST, what He came to do, and the greatest gift He gave. So, I challenge you, as I challenge myself, will you invite Jesus in this year? Or will He be left out of all the memories, laughter, joy, and blessings He desires to be in? My prayer is that you, as I, will celebrate His greatest birth and the gifts He gave! For we truly have been blessed! :)

May The Lord continue to graciously bless you all! Love to you and a


Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Stop :)

This quote came across my path the other day and had a huge and profound effect on me. I have been pondering on it's significance as the days go by and as I prepare for what is ahead. I hope that it has a challenging effect on you as it did me! :) It truly is easy to get caught up in our lives to the point that we forget what is really important...or we become so swamped in what others have put upon us (expectations, desires, and other) that eventually all else becomes our focus and the thought of stopping and listening to that still small voice becomes that thought that is distant in our minds. ;)

I know that it is Christmas time and the end of this year is ending, yet as I challenge myself, I am also challenging those that read this to take time and "stop and listen to what God has commanded"... search out His will for year 2008 and focus on it! I pray that we would not let the desires or expectations of man bind us but drive us to our knees knowing that each day, we must take direction from the greatest Commander who has the greatest and best plan for our lives before us!

"If the Christian is too busy to stop, take spiritual inventory,
and receive his assignments from God, he becomes a slave
to the tyranny of the urgent. He may work
day and night to achieve much that seems
significant to himself and others, but he will not
finish the work God has for him to do."
-Charles E. Hummel
(Tyranny of the Urgent)
May the Lord richly bless you all!

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Some Pictures from my trip

Giving the Girls their EIC (Excellence in Communication) assignments :)
Great fun! :)

Fabulous Team Leaders! I am so proud of them!

Here we are! The great assistants :)

My new nickname now proceeds me... The Fairy G.

We were visited by the "Veggies"

Here I am in another skit

and another :)

Mr. and Mrs. Bell...EXCEL Directors

Here you can see the Ambassador Hotel a.k.a. Dallas Ministry Center
where I lived while in Dallas

The girls on a bridge located downtown Dallas in a beautiful Park
(I can't remember the exact name of it at the moment)

Just having fun downtown! :)

I thought that this was interesting so I took a picture of it

Rrrrrr!....said the lion and bear
Help Help!....cries the sheep
Just the two of us having fun
Here is a great picture of us (assistants) taken in the gazebo the
2nd to the last week of EXCEL
Just wanted to share some of my piles of pictures...I am planning on posting more...but for they are! Each picture shown has a story behind it. :) As I put this together, tons of memories flooded my mind! :) It seems just like yesterday!
I hope that you all enjoyed! :) Stay tuned for more!

Saturday, November 24, 2007

I'm Back :)

It appears to me that I have been away from posting here on this blog for a long time. :) Well, this is true. I look at the date of my last posting and am amazed that I haven't posted since then. However, it just goes to tell you that life carries on and lots has happened in the life of Elisabeth over the past couple of months! :)

I have so much that I would love to post however, it may take me a couple of postings to get all that I have to say and show you out of my heart and on to paper. For now though, I would like to post something that has been deep on my heart lately and was summed up in the book that I am going through as part of my daily Bible reading. The books title is "Come Away My Beloved" and the author is Frances J. Roberts. It is written as from the perspective of letters from the Lord regarding different aspects of life. Throughout the book, there are many sections that are challenging and therefore causes your mind to ponder on least such is my case. This section in particular struck me and continues to challenge me as I re-read what is says.

Your Body, a Living Sacrifice
"Yield Me, your body as a living sacrifice, and do not be conformed to the things
of the world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind
(See Romans 12:1-2)
Set your affections on things of the Spirit, and do not
be in bondage to the desires of the flesh.
For I have purchased you at great price.
Yes, you are My special possession and My treasure.
I would have you set your affections and desires upon Me
even as I have set My heart upon you.
It is written that the wife has no power over her own body
except for the husband, nor the husband but for the wife
(see 1 Corinthians 7:4)
So I would that you should yield your body to Me,
otherwise I am limited in My power to work.
For I must have a vessel through which to operate.
dedicated, sanctified for My use; available to Me at all times, and ready
to be used at whatever time I have need of you.
You will not have time to make yourself ready when I need you.
You must be prepared.
You must keep yourself in a state of readiness.
You cannot live to the flesh and at the same time be available
to the Spirit.
You must walk in the Spirit, and in so doing
keep yourself from becoming entangled in worldly things.
You must live in obedience to the Spirit,
and thus be kept from being in bondage to your carnal nature.
I Myself cannot keep you except you first make this choice.
It was concerning this matter that Jude wrote his word of
admonition:"But you, beloved, building yourselves up on your
most holy faith, praying in the Holy Spirit, keep yourselves in
the love of God" (Jude 20-21)
As you set your soul through deliberate choice of your will
to pursue the worship of God by praying in the Spirit,
you will find your faith strengthened
and your life bathed in the love of God,
With you faith laying hold on God's promises and power,
and your action motivated by the love of God,
you will find yourself in the path of the activity of God;
His blessing shall be upon you,
and He will accomplish His works through you.
You do not need to make plans nor resort to and clever strategy.
Keep yourself in the love of God.
Pray in the Spirit. Rejoice evermore. Set your affections upon Christ.
God will do through you and for His glory such things
as it pleases Him to do, and you will rejoice with Him.
For as your own spirit is aware when His Spirit is grieved within you,
so will you also be aware when His Spirit
rejoices within you. This is His joy.
This is the joy He promised.
This the the greatest joy that can come to the human heart,
for it is joy of God, and the joy of God transcends all human joy.
Surely you will not only rejoice but be exceeding glad,
with a gladness surpassing your power to tell.
In this way you will give this back to Him,
since no other can fully receive it,
even as David poured out to Him
the precious water form the well of Bethlehem
(see 2 Samuel 23:15-16)
Praise His wonderful Name!"
This is something to ponder and I pray that it will be a blessing you all who reads this! :) As I have said before, this book from which I just quoted, is one that has really challenged me to see beyond the end of my nose and think beyond my comprehension. In times ahead, I may post again using sections of this book hoping that they will be as much of a blessing to others as they have been to me! :)
I pray that you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving! :) We have so much to be grateful for! I sure am counting my blessings!
May the Lord bless you all! I hope to write more soon. :) Love to you!

Friday, August 24, 2007

This is a family picture we took in Michigan at a wedding

I'm back! :)

Wow! I can't believe how time has past and that I haven't written or posted on my blog in forever! :) This summer has truly been insanely crazy for me as it has for many of you I am sure!

I finished Advanced EXCEL in June and am proud to say that I am a graduate! The skills I learned are ones that will never wear out and am looking forward to seeing how the Lord uses them in the future....maybe some public speaking?...continued discipleship?...all I know is that I am excited to see where and how the Lord uses it in my life!

In July, my family and I attended a family reunion which was a blast! It was neat meeting and seeing family members that I haven't seen in awhile! :) There were many other exciting experiences, but I would take up the whole page telling you about them! :)

The end of July and early August found me busy with Conferences, volunteering at a Father/Son Retreat, enjoying family outings like the Demolition Derby at the Adams County Fair and celebrating birthdays, and the list continues! Time truly flies when you are having fun!

As of now, I am preparing to go back to Dallas,TX to assist the Director of EXCEL among many other things that will definitely keep me busy! :) I am so excited to spend my time there! Each time Texas calls my name, God always has new and exciting things to teach me! Therefore, I look forward to what this new adventure will bring!

Anyways, that's just a quick update to let you all know what's going on in my life! There are many things that I am hoping to do and plan in the near future like and am praying about their possibilities!

Blessings to you all!

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

A Prayer

I wrote this prayer the beginning of this year and thought I would share it with you all. May you find it encouraging.

"Dear Lord Jesus,
Make me a mighty soldier for You today, willing to serve in any way. May your gentleness and compassion touch others through the work of my hands. May the fingerprints I leave behind remain as blessings to those around me, and may You preordain the fingerprints that lie ahead.
May my tongue stay captive as it moves about each day. May I refrain from gossip and untruth, and instead speak Your truth and many blessings.
May my eyes behold Your glory and never leave Your face. May my feet stay steadfast on the narrow pathway, never enticed by distractions. May I stay focused on the goal-line never wondering here or there. Let me never forget my greatest Cheer Leader as you'll never leave my side.
May my thoughts flow Heavenward and may they remain pure and true.
May I trust my heart to You, dear Lord, the one who knows its desires. May I yield every section, crack, and hope, to the glory of the Father that loves me through and through. May my heart always remain willing ever open to Your promptings, challenges, and desires. May it always rest at Your throne, where safe it will remain. May I always love You completely and wholly, ever focused on Your face.
May I never disappoint You, though sin may show its face. May I remain Your princess flowing with Your mercy and Your grace. May the ornaments of a meek and quiet spirit clothe me and may the examples of the "virtuous women" encourage me.
May my life be a testimony of Your riches and the many blessings You have given. Let nothing else distract me from holding Your hand in faith. Now from this day forward, Lord please, help me entrust You with my future, for I know You have a plan. Let me grasp the many promises kept in Your Word, that I might not stumble as each day passes.
Most importantly, may my love for you always flow forward and never end!"
Your willing princess,
Elisabeth K.
"Wherefore, Seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider him that endured such contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds." -Hebrews 12:1-3

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Deliver me Jesus....

This is a prayer that has really challenged me in the past couple of months. Therefore, I wanted to post it for those that would desire to have it as well. It was given to me from my Advanced EXCEL Instructor and I desire to share it with you because of it's impact.

Deliver me, Jesus...
...From the desire to be praised, honored, glorified,
preferred, consulted, or approved. Deliver me, Jesus, from the fear of being humiliated, criticized, forgotten, ridiculed, maltreated, and from the fear of what others think. Oh, Jesus, give me the grace to desire: that others would be loved and esteemed ahead of me; that in the eyes of the world they would increase and I decrease; and praised while I pass by unnoticed; that others would be preferred in all situations; that others would become more than myself- in order that I would be as holy as You want me to be."
- Charles de Foucauld

Christ Fulfilled

Every human has a desire to be fulfilled. For Christians, I believe that their desire is to be "Christ Fulfilled," at least I have come to realize that, this is my desire. After analyzing myself and the many different heart felt desires I have, the base or bottom line of it all is the fact that my longing is to be fulfilled.

We, as humans, search out fulfillment in others, possessions, materials, etc. However, when we seek fulfillment in these things, we will not be completely fulfilled! :) Think about it for a moment. A child seeks fulfillment in his/her parents, a teenager begins to seek fulfillment in his/her peers maybe even the opposite gender, a girl seeks fulfillment in her father, a single person begins to seek fulfillment in the thought of marriage as though it will fill every desire, a married person begins to seek fulfillment in their spouse, and the list continues. You see, we all have that desire to be fulfilled.

Though our natural instinct is to seek this "thought of fulfillment" in those that we admire or can humanly see, we must come face to face with the fact that only true fulfillment comes from Christ. He knows and understands every single desire, passion, and longing. He is the One who desires to fulfill all of our needs. That is what He has set out to do in our relationship with Him.

We must let go of this "thought" of fulfillment and seek it only in Christ. He will not discourage us or fail us! Once we find fulfillment in Christ and nothing else, our act of desiring fulfillment in others will eventually come to nothing. However, because we are humans and are imperfect, just as Christ says to take up our cross daily we too must ask God on a daily basis to fulfill our every need and we need to have that desire to seek it.

"Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith? Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? (For after all these things do the gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things. But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof." Matt. 6:30-34

Monday, April 23, 2007

"Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen." Hebrews 11:1

Hebrews 11 gives us an account of those in scripture who walked by faith and not by sight. In fact, it is a chapter full of their testimonies. Consider Abraham when he was tried, He offered up Isaac his only son, who in Isaac, Abraham's seed shall be called. Consider also, Moses when God called him to lead those, God's children, out of Egypt. He too walked by faith and not by sight. They understood only what lay at their feet, nothing more until God revealed it to them. This chapter goes on telling us about these heroins of the faith. Often encouragement fills my soul whenever my eyes longingly scan and study the words that mingle into stories within this chapter.

As a believer I too am called to walk by faith and not by sight. Yet it seems so hard. It is hard! Sight is the most important sense within the "five senses." Yet the other four senses are just as important. Consider touch, without the touch of one's hand leading you, you really have no way of knowing which direction to turn. No true way of "feeling" the hurdles that lie before. Without smell, you would miss out on God's richest savory scents within the breeze. Think of the smell of rain, the lilacs that are in bloom. Also, without taste, you would not be able to completely "taste and see that the Lord is good" or even taste your grandmother's or your mother's famous desert. Without hearing, we are unable to hear the lullabies your mother sang to you as you fell asleep, unable to hear the pound of rain as it taps the ground, unable to hear your earthly father's voice as he commands you to obey, unable to hear the treasures of music, and the list continues. Therefore each have a huge purpose in life. None are to be taken for granted. Yet still, there is that huge uniqueness about them and how they connect with faith.

It is true that as believers we are to walk by faith and not by sight however, we have a loving Lord that desires to lead us in the path we will go, and when we allow the Lord to lead us, in a sense, He fills the different "five spiritual senses."

Sight is given to us through God's eyes. The more drawn we are to Christ to more we see through the eyes of our Lord. We see different hurdles or sin that come our way. We see and begin to understand the compassion our Lord has on those in need and therefore, we desire compassion on others the same. As we begin to look through the "eyes" of Christ, we also are then enlightened in scripture as the Lord shines His brightness as He reveals His treasures. Most of all though, as we draw closer to God, we begin to see His beautiful face, the smile that wrinkles His cheeks and the brightness that fills His eyes as He gazes upon us in love.

Hearing comes as we listen to that still small voice spoken quietly day to day. The closer we become to the Lord, the easier it will be to hear the voice of our "Shepherd." We will be able to hear His warnings throughout the journey of faith, hear His encouragement when we are weary and fainthearted, and hear His challenges as He desires us to mirror His image.

Touch is given by the Lord as He holds our hand throughout our walk with Him. He engulfs us in His arms as we shed our tears and carries us through the hard times in life. If we fall, which often we do, He stretches forth His hand, picks us up, and brushes us off. He gives us "pats" on the back when we do a good deed. Most importantly though, He is the best comforter when no one seems to understand.

As we follow the Lord in faith, His sweet savory smell fills the breeze that brushes past Him and surrounds us. The smell of refreshment overwhelms us as we follow close behind.
Taste comes as we let God's flavoured bounties remain on our hearts and ponder His goodness. When we "taste and see that the Lord is good."

Each will be given to you as you walk in faith and obedience wherever Christ has you. Remember as Peter took his eyes off the Lord, he began to sink. So too, in our faith, we must continue to keep our eyes upon the Lord and we will draw closer to Him. We will find our fulfillment in Christ, nothing else. Yes, walking by faith is and will be the hardest thing anyone has done in their life, however, the best place to be is in the shadow of His wings. Keep striving in faith, don't let weariness overcome you, if you do, you will begin to stray farther away from the Lord. Let these heroins of the faith written here in Hebrews 11 be that encouragement to fill that desired need on a daily basis.

May you all be found in the shadow of His wings, the safest place to be. :)

Tuesday, April 10, 2007


"To Everything there is a season, and a time for every matter or purpose under the heaven: A time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to pluck up what is planted, A time to kill and a time to heal, a time to break down and a time to build up. A time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance, A time to cast away stones and a time to gather stones together, a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing, A time to get and a time to lose, a time a keep and a time to cast away, A time to rend and a time to sew, a time to keep silence and a time to speak, A time to love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace..." Ecclesiastes 3:1-8

April has arrived and spring is here. The flowers are blooming, the birds prepare their nests for their young, the temperature gets warmer as the days go by the stream flows softly, and the trees bud in preparation for leaves. It seems like yesterday that winter was here and now it is gone. Time flies so quickly, more now than it ever has.

Life's adventures are like "seasons" that come and go. As I get older, I realize more now, that first of all, time is of the essence, and second of all, that time is precious as well. I recently left the teen stage and am now in a completely new phase...season... of life. Just as before, I don't know what the upcoming years will bring, however, many examples have plowed the way for me and I am grateful for their many testimonies. I understand the importance of the "Titus 2 Woman" who is called to lead by example and testify to the younger generation of women. The influences of the different "Titus 2 Women" have made a great impact on me and I am grateful for it. I am grateful for their willingness to hold my hand and encourage me as I step into the "waters of the unknown." What blessings each of them have been. What an honor to be in their "wind" of influence.

Yet, as I begin to walk in this new season of life, I realize the importance of many heart felt things. As I said before, time has made a huge impact on me, especially as I look back at the past ten years of my life. I know I could have done more for the Lord and His Kingdom, yet didn't. The thought of regret does not at all come to mind. God blessed me with many life changing opportunities that gave me a chance to leave my fingerprint on, however, I know that I could have done more. Because I do not know or foresee what the next 10, 5 or even a few years will bring, the conscious, continual decision must be made to keep pressing toward the mark in life and spend every hour and minute wisely.

I am not at all fearful of what this next season will bring, in fact, excitement fills my heart as I watch the Lord pull back the blinds of life and unfold the different blessings and opportunities that lay ahead. As I begin the different discoveries, the one thing that I am most grateful for is the Lord walking continually by my side. He will never leave me nor forsake me.

Yet, because I am human, change has been hard for me to encounter. Change in pace of life, change that lay ahead, and change in general...I feel as if I play the part of Joe in Little Women. Just as she desired things to stay the same, in a way, I too, desire for things to stay the same. I know that life never stays the same, and if it did, we would all be worthless.

With this new season comes new responsibility. I have known for years that other young girls looked up to me, however now, the reality of the fact sets in. Knowing this, pushes me to my knees before Christ. With that, my prayer is that they would not see me, but that in whatever I do, they would see Christ and Him alone and desire to mirror His image and not mine.

What joy it is to know that "God has made everything beautiful in His time..." In whatever I walk through in life, He considers it beautiful because He made it in His time. He owns time, He created it! Therefore, because everything is beautiful in His time, things may not go as planned. If my desires are His desires then those desires will be fulfilled; I must wait on Him and be of good courage. Sometimes the desire flows forth for time to "speed up" in life, I am grateful that it doesn't. If it did, I would constantly be catching up! :)

This past weekend, snow reared it's face again. Just when I thought that winter was done, it snowed. Then I got to thinking about it. Even though the winter season has past and spring is here, that snowfall was like a memory of the winter season. So too in life, when a season of life comes and goes, you have memories that trickle their way into life's continual busyness. When those times come, aren't you grateful for them? I am. :)

It is the memories that I hold dearly! As I step forward into this new, unknown season of life, the sweet God given memories will be that continual refreshment of what God has done in me over time. What a blessing!

"To Everything there is a season..." In whatever your season may be, may you find many awaiting blessings that hide around the corner!

Monday, April 2, 2007

In the Gospel of Mark, Jesus lays the spiritual foundation by giving examples relating to His disciples. Repeatedly you see His desire to pour himself out in any way to fill the needs of not only the 12 men that adored Him, but also the multitudes of people that searched Him out.

As He walked about the many cities, Jesus portrayed servant hood to His disciples as He tended to the needs of His people. From healing the sick, the blind, and those with leprosy, to feeding the hungry and casting out demons, He sought the needs of others over Himself to the point of death. By serving those He loved, He also showed compassion, kindness, and concern. Mark 10:13a and 16 illustrates this well, "And they brought young children to him, that he should touch them...And he took them up in his arms, put his hands upon them, and blessed them."

Jesus gave numerous parables that scatter throughout the book of Mark. While teaching the multitudes, Jesus used parables as the disciples sat near and listened to their importance. When the multitudes did not understand the message of one on these parables, He graciously explained the meaning, for example the parable of the sower found in Mark 4:13-20. Not only did He teach using parables, He also taught using Scripture as well, which formed the foundation in all His teachings.

Jesus also invested His time in teaching His disciples, whether He called them unto Himself privately or if Hi taught them openly. He desired for them to learn, to know His principles, and the written Word. As a result, Jesus used each moment as a teachable moment.

Jesus understood the importance of time as He went about each day. Knowing His earthly ministry would end shortly, He discipled Himself to make the best use of His time by continuing to teach, heal and fulfill the many needs of those He met. Because the disciples followed Him, they, too, understood the importance of time.

Since Jesus spent the majority of His time with His disciples, He led by example and not by His word only. "Come ye after me, and I will make you to become fishers of men." Mark 1:17 Because Jesus led by example, He had an immense influence upon the disciples.

Furthermore, He modeled His relationship with His Father before them when He frequently went up into a mountain to pray. Consider the time when He knew that His hour approached that He should give His life, "...My soul is exceedingly sorrowful unto death: tarry ye here, and watch. And he went forward a little, and fell on the ground, and prayed that, if it were possible, the hour might pass from him." Mark 14:34-35 His relationship with His Father was priority. As a result, His testimony stayed with His disciples as an encouragement.

Jesus chose His disciples, and ordained them that they should go out and teach, (Mark 3:13-19) therefore, clearly demonstrating His understanding of the principles of discipleship. When you invest your time in one or many persons, they in turn will invest in one or many persons. As a pebble drops into a lake, creating the ripples that move throughout the water, so too will a discipleship create the ripples of influence that pass forth and bear fruit.

O how perfect the model of Christ! As I disciple those given to me by the Lord, I desire to mirror Christ's image. Instead of teaching all the time, God challenges me to lead by example. I desire to walk out my faith before those watching so that they may, in turn, take it as a testimony in their lives. Just as Jesus portrayed servant hood by looking beyond His needs to the needs of others, I too must die to self and my desires and search out the needs of those placed in my path. I must also invest time in teaching whom I disciple and build God's written Word as my foundation. As God allows me to place my touch of discipleship on others, I aspire to leave a ripple of influence just as a pebble leaves a ripple upon the water.

Happy Easter to all that read this! May the reminder of God's ultimate price for our lives fill your hearts and minds as you celebrate Christ's resurrection!

Monday, March 19, 2007

" And Mary said, Behold the handmaid of the Lord, be it unto me according to thy word..." ~Luke 1:38
As I continue to walk through many of life's "refining fires," the message of Luke 1:38 frequently comes to mind. Mary's future, at that time seemed to be unknown, aside from what the Angel told her,"Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favor with God. And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS." (Luke 1:30-31) Yet, without conplaint or questions asked, she chose to walk in obedience.
When I first read Luke 1:38, I never noticed or paid much attention to verse 37, "For with God nothing shall be impossible." I Looked up "nothing" in the Strong's Concordance, which then showed me,"nothing: all, any, whatsoever, no(-thing),etc." At that moment, this verse became real to me, " For with God nothing(whatsoever) shall be impossible."
It stands to reason that, when we allow God to guide our lives, nothing is impossible. When hardships come and our flesh desires to flee, we must choose to stand on the "Solid Rock" of God, for He desires to show Himself strong in our lives. I realize now that God's grace and mercy flows over me as He leads me through each "refinging fire." Yet even still, I want to know why I must walk through these "fires." My first requirment will never change, "Trust in the Lord with all of your heart and leand not on your own understanding but in all of your ways, acknowledge Him and He will direct your paths." (Proverbs 3:5-6)
I heard an illustration last summer describing the mountains of difficulty that daily impact our lives, the rope of God's grace given to us as a tool to use in the process of climbing, and God's mercy as a safety net to catch us if we fall. As I pondered this illustration, God gave me deeper insight and understanding, which lead me to write the following paragraph in my journal.
"God has called each of us to climb our own mountain. He has given us grace as a rope fallen beside un to take hold of to endure the pain of climbing. If we fall, His mercy is there to catch us, brush us off and say, " You can do all things through Christ which strengthens you." (Phil. 4:13) You look back up the mountain, and see again the "rope of grace." It is then you are reminded of 2 Corinthians 12:9a "And He said unto me, my grace is sufficient for thee, for my strength is made perfect in weakness..." At that moment, you decide to take hold of God's grace. You begin climbing and say, "Not my will but Thine be done," if you have not already made the decision to walk away."
My desire, whether God calls me to climb mountains or stay in the valley's of life, is to have the heart of Mary and say, "Behold the handmaid of the Lord, be it unto me according to thy word" and keep this promise upon my heart, "For with God nothing shall be impossible."
"To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven." ~Ecc. 3:1. God gave us this verse as a promise. Things do come and go out of our lives. Remember, whatever God calls you to in life, He will not give you anything that you cannot accomplish without His strength. I have experienced that it takes only the faith of a mustard seed to move mountains.
May God pour out His richest blessings on you all!
In His Sonshine,
Elisabeth K.