Monthly Archives: February 2014

You Remind Me of Someone…

This past weekend we went for dinner at a family’s home from our church.  We have known them for many years, but have not spent considerable time with them.  We had a delightful time.  I especially enjoyed their seven year old son who: -showed me His picture Bible (David & Goliath is his favorite story), -asked me to guess who His favorite super hero was (it starts with G, ends with D and has an O in the middle), and -offered to cook me a fried egg before we left! *smile*  (yet another reason why ministry is the best job in the world!)

I also enjoyed chatting with the wife.  I love hearing people’s stories and listening to them share about what is going on in their life.  As she was talking, I became somewhat distracted by her mannerisms.  The way she paused as she spoke, some of her facial expressions, even the way she phrased the words were familiar to me.  I began to think, “You remind me of someone.”  It didn’t take long for me to put two and two together.  She was acting just like her best friend, another lady from our church who I know much better and have spent more time with.  Sure enough, she was acting just like her!  As I continued to listen to her, I wondered why the similarities were so striking.  The main reason I could think of is because they spend a lot of time together.  As best friends, they are in tune with each other and have obviously rubbed off on each other.  So much so, that they have even begun to imitate one another.  Amazing!

That got me to be wondering – would anyone ever say I reminded them of Jesus?  Are my mannerisms at all like Christ’s?  Do I speak like He does?  When people see me, do they see Him?  Have I spent enough time with Him as my best friend that I am in tune with how He reacts and responds to people?  Am I in tune with His Spirit that is alive in me or am I more in tune with my flesh?  Ephesians 5:1-2 says . . .

Eph 5 1 and 2

As we spend time with Jesus, He rubs off on us and the natural result is that we begin to copy Him and follow His example.  Our lives become an imitation of His life.  This is the work He loves to do in you and me.  His job is to transform us, our job is to cooperate with the process.

Father, I want to imitate you.  I don’t want my life to be a cheap imitation, but the real deal.  As I follow Your example, help me to walk in love.  May I be like Jesus in all my interactions with others.  I want my life to be a sweet fragrance to you, so that when people observe my life they say, “You remind me of someone . . . it must be Jesus”.  In His Name and for His sake, Amen    

Your Friend in Ministry,

Name3

 

 

The Sunday Morning Scramble – AKA “Help me Jesus!”

Sunday, February 16th, 2014 will forever go down in Posthuma family folklore and history as THE. MOST. PEACEFUL. SUNDAY. MORNING. EVER!  No fighting, no tears, no fits, no bad attitudes, no lost shoes, no nothin’.  One of my children was away at Winter Camp, so that meant there was just one at home (plus me) to get ready for church.  We arrived at church early, with no bad attitudes to confess and make right with Jesus before we entered into worship – this is no small miracle! *smile*

Sunday mornings can be challenging for any family trying to get to church.  However, they can be especially challenging for ministry families.  Can I get an amen?  Normally, there is just one parent at home to get the children ready on Sunday mornings.  Plus, ministry families are among the first to show up to church to prepare for the morning and among the last to leave, which makes for a very long day, especially for little ones, bless their hearts.

As I basked in the glory of last week’s peaceful Sunday morning, I realized we have been having more and more of them these days.  It used to be the calm Sunday mornings were few and far between, maybe one per month.  Thankfully, it has now evened out and the peaceful mornings outweigh the chaotic ones.  Of course, it helps that my children are, for the most part, self-sufficient and can feed, bathe and clothe themselves in addition to ironing their own clothes and styling their own hair.  As I stop and think about it, they have come such a long way and I am proud of them!

But for those of us in the throes of raising young or several children, I offer some tips and strategies I have learned through the years to help with what I (non-affectionately) call the “Sunday Morning Scramble”:

  • Prep as much as you can the night before.  Does everyone know what they are going to wear?  Is it clean?  Are (both) shoes easily accessible?  This includes you, mom – don’t wait until Sunday morning to decide what you are going to wear, take the extra few minutes to decide what you will wear.  I can’t tell you how many times my husband has come home to find our bedroom looking like the mall exploded in the closet and flowed out into the bedroom.  Trust me, this can cause terror in the heart of a husband. *smile*
  • Have as many people as possible shower or bathe on Saturday night.  One church where we served had a Saturday night service.  Because my children were very small, we didn’t attend that service.  Instead Saturday night became bath time, pizza and movie night and though we missed my husband each and every Saturday night, this became a fun tradition for the kids and me.  When they woke up Sunday morning, they were all clean and ready to go.
  • Pray.  “Help me Jesus” is a common prayer of mine on Sunday mornings.  However, several years ago, I wrote a more specific prayer that I prayed over my family and our church on Sunday mornings.  Feel free to make it your own.  Click here – Sunday Morning Prayer.
  • Play soothing music.  Either worship music or instrumental music works best for us.  Soothing music sets the stage for a peaceful morning, whether or not the characters on the stage cooperate with the soothing environment any given Sunday, is anyone’s guess.  *smile*
  • DONUTS & Gospel Music!  Whatever you can do to make getting ready for church fun, do it.  We want our kids to be excited to go to church, not dread it.  For my kids, making time to stop for donuts on the way was the trick!  Also, several years ago, I found a great gospel song, “In the Sanctuary” by Kurt Carr.  Every Sunday morning, on the drive to church, we listen to this song and sing along.  Sure, my kids have gotten to the age where they act like they don’t like it and I’m the craziest mom on the planet for singing my heart out, but I know deep in their hearts, they love it.   

Donuts

  •  Give yourself and your children lots and lots of grace.  I believe that the enemy tries to come against ministry families on Sunday morning.  I can’t tell you how many times I’ve arrived at church feeling out of sorts and sometimes even defeated.  But because of Jesus and His grace, I’m not defeated, the enemy is!  Jesus gives us grace when we blow it.  Receive His grace and be sure to extend it to your family as well.  A little grace goes a long way!

I hope some of these tips are helpful for you as get your family ready for church on Sunday mornings.  I know most people don’t realize all that you and your family has to go through just to get to church in order to serve others.  But, Jesus sees your faithfulness.  Hear Him whisper to your spirit, “Well done good and faithful servant! ‘You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!’” Matthew 25:21

Your Friend in Ministry,

Name3

Psalm 33:20-22

Psalm 33

Hope.  We all need it.  The challenge is we often put our hope in the wrong thing.  Psalm 33:20 instructs us to put our hope in the Lord.  That word hope means “to expect”.  When we wait in hope for the Lord, we expect Him to show up, because He is our help (offense) and shield (defense).

Sometimes God shows up quickly.  Other times He allows us to wait for Him to show up.  Either way, our hearts can be full of joy because we trust in His holy name (vs 21).  He hasn’t gotten us this far to ditch us now!  Often God uses times of waiting to mature us, because nothing helps you mature quite like waiting, right?  However, LONG seasons of waiting (I’m talkin’ months and even years) can cause us to lose hope.  What do you do then?  You rest and rely upon His unfailing love (vs 22).

About a month ago, I found myself needing some hope.  I had been studying this portion of Scripture, so I decided to ask the Lord to give me glimpses of His unfailing love.  I soon found out, that’s a prayer He loves to answer!  In fact, it got to the point where I think He was showing off, just because He could (*smile*).  All of a sudden that phrase “unfailing love” was everywhere I turned around . . . in songs, in other Scriptures I just happened to “stumble” upon.  He also used others to show me HIS unfailing love, homemade cinnamon rolls from a friend, meals when I was sick, prayers and encouraging words from friends.

God designed us so that His very nature (LOVE) could fill our greatest need (LOVE).  Over the past month, I have learned that God desires to show me glimpses of His unfailing love.  I just need to place myself in a position to receive them and then be on the lookout for them.  Some of the ways I do this are by feasting on His Word, filling my heart and environment with worship music and pressing in to my community of believers who love me like Jesus does.

I love the way the Amplified Version translates verse 22… “Let Your mercy and loving-kindness, O Lord, be upon us, in proportion to our waiting and hoping for You.”  God is so tender to us when we are in a season of waiting for Him to show up.  He knows it is hard for us to wait.  This verse encourages us not to give up hope because His mercy and loving-kindness is in direct proportion to the amount of waiting and hoping we do.  The longer you wait – the more you hope in Jesus and expect Him to show up without losing heart – the more you will sense His mercy and loving kindness surrounding you.

It may seem like you’ve waited a long time.  He may not show up like you had in mind, but make no mistake, God. Will. Always. Show. Up.!  That is why we put our hope in Him.

Thank You Father for your Word.  It brings comfort to my soul.  May I put my hope in You alone.  You are my help and my shield.  Help me to trust in you.  Thank you for glimpses of your unfailing love.  I expect you to show up.  In Jesus’ Name and for His sake, Amen. 

Your Friend in Ministry,

Name3