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What I’m Reading – When Jesus Wept

12 Apr
My Thoughts
 
I have read quite a few books on the story of Martha and Mary, but When Jesus Wept is the first book I have read told from the perspective of Lazarus. His story begins a year after he had lost his wife and baby in childbirth. He is just emerging from his time of mourning and has yet to meet Jesus. When Jesus Wept is about Lazarus’ friendship with Jesus and the many lessons he learns about faith and forgiveness along the way.

One of my favorite parts of the story is when Lazarus first sits down with Jesus after seeing Him baptized by John and hearing Him teach from a distance. Jesus begins the time together by asking Lazarus about his vineyards and listening to him. He then uses what Lazarus knows to share about being connected to the vine. I also really loved seeing Jesus teach and heal others through Lazarus’ eyes. The moment he witnesses between Jesus and his sister, Mary, was beautiful.

When Jesus Wept is a captivating read and I adored it. I couldn’t put 
it down and it is one of those books that I will read over and over again.
 
You can purchase the book here:
 


Enter Today - 4/2 - 4/23!
When  Jesus Wept Thoene iPad Giveaawy

About the Book
Lazarus occupies a surprising position in the Gospel accounts. Widely known as the man Jesus raised from the dead, his story is actually much broader and richer than that. Living as he did at Bethany, near Jerusalem, Lazarus was uniquely placed to witness the swirl of events around Jesus. When Jesus Wept, the first novel in The Jerusalem Chronicles series by bestselling authors Bodie and Brock Thoene, unfolds the turbulent times in Judea during Jesus’ ministry, centering on the friendship between Jesus and Lazarus. With rich insights from vineyard owners and vine dressers, the Thoenes explore the metaphor of Jesus as the True Vine, harvesting the ancient secrets found in the Old Testament. Weaving the life of Lazarus, who owned a vineyard, into the crucifixion and resurrection of Christ will help you understand it is the hand of Love Divine that holds the knife, that cuts and breaks with such tender and loving touch, and that we who have born some fruit, after the pruning, can bear much more.
About the Authors

Bodie and Brock Thoene (pronounced Tay-nee) are bestselling authors of over sixty-five works of historical fiction. Their timeless classics have sold more than thirty-five million copies and won eight ECPA Gold Medallion Awards. The Thoenes have four grown children and eight grandchildren. They divide their time between Hawaii, London, and Nevada.
Find out more about Bodie and Brock at http://www.thoenebooks.com/


Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.
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Lost & Found in Jesus

5 Apr
Today I am joining Lisa-Jo and friends for Five Minute Friday.
This is where we come together writing for 5 minutes without editing or overthinking.
I love this community.

Check out what everyone’s is sharing on the word AFTER here.

Five Minute Friday

Today was one of those conversations with my mentor that was both encouraging and challenging. After I got off the phone with her, I couldn’t get one thing out of my head.

Am I pursuing ministry more than Jesus?

You see there are times that I get caught up in the “doing” and lose sight of the “why.”
I could rattle off to you the many reasons that I do what I do, but it all comes down to one thing. The most important thing.

Jesus loves me and I love Him.

Everything that I do from mothering to ministry flows out of that love.
He has to come first in all of it.
And sometimes I fail.
I try to do it on my own, inviting Him into the place where I am 
when all along it’s His invitation that I am responding to.
And then there’s grace. 
He gently reminds me that it is only by Him, for Him, 
and through Him that any of it is possible.

I want to pursue Him above all.
To stop striving for anything more than Him.
To be so lost in Jesus that there is where I am found.
That is my prayer today.



Look to the Lord and his strength;
seek his face always.
Psalm 105:4

Blessings,

I Have Seen The Lord

31 Mar


Mary stood weeping outside the tomb, and as she wept she stooped to look into the tomb. And she saw two angels in white, sitting where the body of Jesus had lain, one at the head and one at the feet. They said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping?” She said to them, “They have taken away my Lord, and I do not know where they have laid him.” 

Having said this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing, but she did not know that it was Jesus. Jesus said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you seeking?” Supposing him to be the gardener, she said to him, “Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have laid him, and I will take him away.” Jesus said to her, “Mary.” She turned and said to him in Aramaic, “Rabboni!” (which means Teacher). 

Jesus said to her, “Do not cling to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father; but go to my brothers and say to them, ‘I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.’” 

Mary Magdalene went and announced to the disciples, 
“I have seen the Lord” and that he had said these things to her.
John 20:11-18 

He is Risen!
Happy Easter!
Blessings,




What I’m Reading – Lead Your Family Like Jesus

30 Mar
My Thoughts

What I love about Lead Your Family Like Jesus is that it isn’t another “how to” book that you can use to check things off of a list to be a better parent. Instead it is a book that invites you to learn more about Jesus and implement those lessons in your home with a servant heart like His. Each author writes from their experience as parents and all they have learned along the way.


I especially loved the chapter in which Tricia Goyer shared about her experience of getting overwhelmed by her every day schedule. She and her husband sat down to look at everything she was doing and came up with a plan. She assigned each activity with a number from 1 to 4. 1 being those things that she had to do. 2 being things that she should do. 3 being things that she enjoyed doing and helped her. 4 being things she was afraid to say no to or things she did to look good to others. She ended up cutting out all the 4s and even some of the 3s. Doing so enabled her to refocus and evaluate her heart in all she was doing.

I also loved that Tricia shared how she prays for her children. 
She prays for their:

Head – that they will always lift their heads to look to the Lord and that they will allow God to life their heads when they are hurt or discouraged,
Shoulders – so they will learn to let God carry their burdens,
Knees – that they will get on their knees before God regularly, and
Toes – that a community of believers will surround them and keep them on their toes.

Love these messages from Tricia Goyer!




Enter Today - 3/25- 4/16!
LEAD YOUR FAMILY LIKE JESUS BY KEN BLANCHARD, PHIL HODGES & TRICIA  GOYER IPAD GIVEAWAY

About the Book

Does your family need a five-star general at the helm? A psychologist? A referee? Ken Blanchard, best-selling co-author of The One Minute Manager and Lead Like Jesus, points to a better role model: the Son of God. Joined by veteran parents and authors Phil Hodges and Tricia Goyer, renowned business mentor Blanchard shows how every family member benefits when parents take the reins as servant-leaders. Moms and dads will see themselves in a whole new light—as life-changers who get their example, strength, and joy from following Jesus at home. This user-friendly book’s practical principles and personal stories mark the path to a truly Christ-centered family, where integrity, love, grace, self-sacrifice, and forgiveness make all the difference.

You can purchase this book here:

About the Author

Tricia Goyer is the award winning author of over thirty books including Beside Still Waters, Remembering You, and the mommy memoir, Blue Like Play Dough. Tricia is a regular speaker at conventions and conferences and is the host of Living Inspired. She and her family make their home in Little Rock, Arkansas where they are part of the ministry of FamilyLife. 
Learn more about Tricia at her website: http://triciagoyer.com.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

A Broken Jar Leaking Jesus

29 Mar
Today I am joining Lisa-Jo and friends for Five Minute Friday.
This is where we come together writing for 5 minutes without editing or overthinking.
I love this community.

Check out what everyone’s is sharing on the word BROKEN here.

Five Minute Friday

The story of the Samaritan woman at the well grabbed hold of me this week and has yet to let go. This woman who began her day as any other. More than likely she was shunned by others due to her many marriages, so she would go to the well when others weren’t there. Hiding herself so she wouldn’t be seen. And when she arrives, there is Jesus. He does something that has to shock her – asks her for a drink. She might’ve had to do a double take thinking He couldn’t possibly be talking to her. 

Then He begins to share with her about quenching her thirst with living water. She was bold enough to ask questions of Him. Was it because she so longed not to be thirsty anymore? Knowing that nothing had filled her? Thinking that if she could be filled, she wouldn’t have to come to that well anymore?

Then Jesus tells her about her life. He sees her. There was no judgement there. He knows. Acknowledging her. She pushed Him away with words of religion. He pulled her in with words of salvation. She had heard about the Messiah to come and He said “I am He.” Imagine how overwhelming it must have been. Not only did this man speak to her when no one else would, but He saw her and knew her. There is something so powerful about being seen and known. This moment with Jesus changed everything.

She came for water and encountered Jesus.
Going into the town not even thinking of the mistreatment or judgement she could experience – that she had experienced. All she could do after meeting Jesus was tell everyone about Him and that they should come meet Him too.
She became a broken jar filled to overflow that leaked Jesus on everyone around her.
Her life the sermon.

Are you leaking Jesus on those around you?

Blessings,

What I’m Reading – Jesus: Pure & Simple

23 Mar
My Thoughts

It’s time to get back to Jesus.
– Wayne Cordeiro

Ever have a book read you instead of you reading it? That is what Jesus: Pure and Simple did to me. It was a book that I needed to read at exactly the time I needed to read it. There is just so much wisdom within the pages that I wore out my highlighter. Not only in the book itself, but in my Bible as I was constantly marking scripture referred to in the book.

One of my favorite chapters in the book is One Thing. Wayne shares the story of Martha and Mary as a reminder that only one thing is necessary (Luke 10:41-42). 
Later in that same chapter he suggests four important principles 
for growing closer to God through scripture:

Read the Bible daily.
Regularly take time for solitude.
Immerse yourself in gratefulness.
Regularly take time for reflection.

I loved this book and would recommend it highly.

You can purchase this book here:

About the Book

Here’s something refreshing: a pure and simple devotion to Christ. 
Sounds wonderfully inviting, doesn’t it?

And the good news is that it’s not about doing more or doing less. Because God created you in His image, the more you become like Jesus, the more you become the person you were created to be. It is in Him that you actually find fulfillment, not in religious activities (as good as they may be) or in serene settings that give you a needed respite from your harried workplace. He is not the rest from our labors. He is the rest in our labors.

“A promise remains of entering His rest” (Hebrews 4:1). It’s the rest of a child close to his mother. It’s the rest that comes when we are near the one we love. It’s the rest we find when we are walking through unfamiliar surroundings with a guide who knows the way.

The closer you get to Jesus, the more at home you will feel in this journey. 

God designed it that way.

About the Author

Wayne Cordeiro is senior pastor of New Hope Christian Fellowship in Honolulu, Hawaii, one of the most beloved churches. Pioneered by Wayne Cordeiro in 1995, it has grown to over 12,000 in weekend attendance with over 80% of the attendees being first-time Christians. New Hope has recently planted 24 satellite churches in Honolulu. Wayne is an author, songwriter, and highly sought after conference speaker. His books include Doing Church as a Team, Attitudes that Attract Success, Dream Releasers, Seven Rules of Success, Rising Above, Leading on Empty, Divine Mentor, Irresistible Church, Sifted, and Jesus-Pure and Simple. His speaking takes him around the world. He is a church planter and leadership trainer at heart and has planted over 134 churches in the Pacific Rim and around the world. Wayne is also the author of the Life Journal used by thousands of churches. He is the chancellor of New Hope Christian College with campuses in Honolulu, Oregon, Tokyo and Myanmar. He and his wife, Anna, have three children and six grandchildren. They live in Honolulu, Hawaii.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

He Showed Me Jesus

15 Feb
Today I am joining Lisa-Jo and friends for Five Minute Friday.
This is where we come together writing for 5 minutes without editing or overthinking.
I love this community.

Check out what everyone’s is sharing on the word BELOVED here.

Five Minute Friday

He came into my life when my heart was bruised and broken. Years before I had given my heart to a boy and said I do. This boy used his words and hands battering me body and soul. Something inside me had shattered during those years. 

Then I met him. He fought hard to break down the wall I had created to protect myself. No matter how hard I tried to push him away, he just never gave up. He taught me that there are words to be believed and that a touch can heal and not hurt. I fell in love with this man.

But the truth is that it wasn’t until I fell head over heals in love with Jesus that I could allow myself to be loved by him. I just couldn’t grasp that I was lovable. I had heard the words before. It wasn’t until He showed me that I was worthy of love that I could begin to heal. To know that He was willing to be hung on a cross for me out of pure love.

I married this incredible man who loved me when I felt most unlovable. 
Who fought so hard to have me let him into my world. 

He showed me Jesus.

My beloved is mine, and I am his.
Song of Solomon 2:16

Blessings,