Friday, November 30, 2012

The Xenon Helicopter Giveaway Winner is....

And the winner is....

Congratulations, Kendra K! An email requesting your mailing address was sent to you this morning, so be on the lookout for it. Thank you to all who participated!!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Unfailing Love...

Allow the weight of God's unfailing love for you permeate into every crevice of your heart.
Meditate on His words. 
Let the richness of this truth wash over you as a tidal wave washes over the shore.

For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
-Romans 8:38-39 (emphasis mine)

 Nothing in heaven, on earth, or under the earth can keep you from God's reach.
No sin-past-present-or future, is too great that it cannot be covered by the redemptive blood of Christ.

You are dearly loved.

And He sees you- right where you are.

You have not escaped His notice.

He sees your hurt... and your pain.
He sees the tears that you have cried in secret.
He knows of your bitter disappointments.
He is aware that your heart is broken and He longs to mend it.

It is easy, in the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, to believe that God has forgotten you.
Dear one, I am here to attest to His goodness- to His unfailing love.
He desperately desires to be your Comforter; your Healer; your Provider; your Refuge and Strength; your Prince of Peace. But He is also gracious enough to give you a choice. 

It is your choice whether or not to surrender your doubt, your fear, and your pain over to Him. 

I can testify that laying my burdens down at the feet of Jesus, is difficult at times- excruciating even; but it is worth it. My prayer for you today, is that you will experience the freedom that comes with a life that is fully surrendered to Him. 

Will you allow yourself to be overwhelmed by God's unfailing love for you?
How can I be praying specifically for you, today?

Feel free to leave a comment below, or send me an email at
I would love to connect with you.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Help One Now: Legacy Project

You all are aware of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, but allow me to introduce you to a day that I can fully put my stamp of approval on: Giving Tuesday.

Bill Gates, along with 1,000 charities, community organizations and business, are urging people to give back. It is their heartfelt desire to that this too, will become part of the "rhythm of the holiday season."

And what better way could I introduce you to the Legacy Project?!

In a nutshell, y'all, the poverty in Haiti is among the worst in the world. The 2010 earthquake ravished this poor country and left thousands of children orphaned, malnourished, and with a grim future at best. But there is a glimmer of hope found in Petionville, where Pastor Gaetan has taken in 30 orphans and 120 children from their local community,and provided them with an immeasurable gift: education. 


Countries such as Haiti cannot expect to rise above their poverty stricken state when the vast majority of their children never attend school.

Haiti Blogger Trip-72.jpg

But this does not have to be their fate.


On this Giving Tuesday, will you choose to give these children a hope and a future by means of education?

It doesn't take much.

$25 will provide a (virtual) brick that will transform into a school- that will provide children with an education- which will transform their entire future- which will therefore transform an entire country.

$25- that's 4 Venti White Chocolate Mochas from Starbucks that you could go without in order to help fund this project. It's the cost of a night out for a family of 4. It's forgoing that cute blouse that you really wanted to purchase for your upcoming Christmas party. It's that the cost of that new drill you have had your eyes on for months.

Will you be a part of something bigger this holiday season? Will you give back?

Click on the "Back this Project" to support Pastor Gaetan and the Help One Now: Legacy Project

Monday, November 26, 2012

Wonderstruck: Interview with Margaret Feinberg

My friend, Margaret Feinberg, has a new book and 7-session DVD Bible study called Wonderstruck: Awaken to the Nearness of God  (releasing Christmas Day)—a personal invitation for you to toss back the covers, climb out of bed, and drink in the fullness of life.

As you may or may not know, I've been a fan of Margaret Feinberg and her books for the last few years. I recently received the insider’s scoop about Margaret’s new book. Here are some highlights from the interview:

Where did the inspiration for the Wonderstruck book and Bible study come from?

Have you ever had one of those seasons where everything goes wrong, and when you think it can’t get worse, it somehow finds a way? Most people who have worked in ministry have experienced those seasons—some may be in one right now.

My husband, Leif, and I had just gone through one of the roughest years of our lives. In the aftermath, as we processed the pain and loss, I had an unexplainable desire in my heart. I began praying for the wonder of God. In essence, I said, “God reveal yourself, your whole self to me. I want to know you as Wonderful. I want to know you as I’ve never known you before and see you in places I’ve never recognized you before.”

God did not disappoint.

What do you mean by “the wonder of God”?

Sometimes talking or writing about wonder feels like tying kite strings to clouds. It’s ethereal, and you can never quite get a grip on it. But if you look in the dictionary, the two main definitions of wonder are: “being filled with admiration, amazement, or awe” and “to think or speculate curiously.”

Those definitions come together beautifully in our relationship with God. That’s why I define the wonder of God as those moments of spiritual awakening that create a desire to know God more.

In other words, the wonder of God isn't about an emotional experience or having some cool story to tell your friends, but the wonder of God makes us want more of God—to go deeper and further than we've ever been before.

Why are you calling people to #LIVEWONDERSTRUCK?

If you look in the Gospels, what you’ll discover is that those who encountered Jesus were constantly left in wild amazement. They were awestruck by the teachings of Christ, the healings of Christ, the mind-bending miracles of Christ. Within the Gospel of Luke we see words like “awe” and “wonder” and “marvel” at every turn. If this is the natural response to encountering Christ, how much more should it be for you and I—who are invited to live in relationship with Christ as sons and daughters of our God Most High?  We even created a free PDF that looks at some of these Scriptures. For a free copy, email us at and we’ll send you one.

Follow Margaret’s snarky, funny, and inspirational posts on Twitter , Facebook , or her blog . You can learn more about this great book by visiting where she’s offering some crazy promos right now with up to $300 of free stuff. I have thoroughly enjoyed Wonderstruck and the reminder to live in awe and wonder of my Creator. Thank you, Margaret, for sharing your heart with us today!

Saturday, November 24, 2012


I am starting to make the slow transition over to the new blog/blog design, which will explain the temporary changes that have been made to the sidebar. Thank you for your patience and your understanding while the transition takes place!

With love,


Friday, November 23, 2012

Define Necessity

I told myself that I wasn't going to post this.
I told myself that I wasn't going to show my readers how much I despise Black Friday.

I try to avoid social media and television as much as possible around the Thanksgiving holiday because I find the excessive consumerism grotesque and disturbing. 

There is a disconnect and it grows at an alarming rate with each passing year.
Why do we feel that it is necessary to bless and already blessed nation?

I wrestle with this year after year.

On one hand, I thoroughly enjoy giving gifts to those I love. It's one of my love languages. I take great delight in watching the joy on the faces of my sons and my nieces and nephew as they open their gifts on Christmas morning. 
To me- that is a gift in itself. 

At the same time however, I struggle with the excess. Though we are a modest middle class family- living on one income, driving one car, dependent on hand-me-downs and the generosity of others... at times I still feel like we have too much stuff. 

I am not here to condemn those who are out shopping at this very moment. I am not here to say that it is wrong to buy gifts for your loved ones this holiday season- because I plan to either buy or make gifts for my own family. 

I am simply here to say that I, Megan Card, personally struggle with American consumerism. 

And I know that I cannot possibly be the only one. I struggle to find the proper balance between blessing my family simply because I love them- and living out the missional lifestyle we see throughout Scripture.

 How do you balance the Christmas conundrum? 
Do you feel that American consumerism is a growing problem or do you error on the side of wanting to bless your loved ones by means of gift giving?

I'd love to hear your thoughts. Leave a comment below and let me know what you think.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving!

And because I love you all dearly, I am including the recipe for one of my favorite holiday side dishes.
This is my grandmother's recipe and I get asked for it many times every year.

Coca Cola Salad

1 large package of Black Cherry Jello
1 large can of crushed pineapples
1 Cup of chopped nuts (we are fans of pecans)
1 (12 oz) bottle of Coca Cola
1 large can of Black Cherries (Dark Sweet)
1 package of cream cheese (cut into small cubes)

Drain juice from both the pineapple and black cherries and put into a saucepan. Bring juice to a boil and add in the jello until fully dissolved (approximately 2 minutes). Slowly add in the coca cola. Add in the pineapples, cherries, nuts and cubed cream cheese. Put into a dish and refrigerate until firm (approximately 4-6 hours).

I hope that you enjoy your time with those you love!
Happy Thanksgiving! 
I am incredibly grateful for all of you and have been truly blessed to know you.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Disciple Now Recap

Wow- it seems like FOREVER since I have posted on the blog! I sure did miss all of you. I want to thank Megan, April, Sarah and Ruth once again for guest posting for me while I was away. I appreciate y'all so very much.

It's Wednesday, and I feel as though I am now arousing from my Disciple Now induced coma. Spending an entire weekend with eight freshmen really took it out of me-and as expected- my fibromyalgia is in a full blown flare up. But I love pouring my heart out to these teenagers and teaching them God's word, so no amount of pain or suffering will keep me from participating each year. I do hope that you forgive me for my absence on the blog for the last couple of days, but I needed the extra time to rest and recover before the holidays {and another round of craziness} begin.

For those of you who were praying for me during DNow- THANK YOU!!!! God did some incredible things and I am excited to share that one the girls in my group came to a saving knowledge of who Jesus Christ is and asked that He come into her heart and take up residence there. Please keep praying for Taylor because the first few weeks are both the most exciting and spiritually challenging as a new believer  The enemy will do whatever he can to cast doubt in her mind, so please join me in praying that the Lord will guard her heart and strengthen her with His Presence. 

There was also one boy in my group who is not a believer and his heart is very hard to the gospel at this time. Please keep this young man in your prayers. It breaks my heart that I do not live closer so that I could continue to build upon the truths that were taught this weekend- but God has placed several of the students that were in my group at his school and they have all taken it upon themselves to continue to speak truth into this young man's life.

With the Thanksgiving holiday quickly approaching {I cannot believe it's tomorrow!!} I will not be blogging as frequently this week. We will resume the normal schedule next week. I hope that y'all have a very Happy Thanksgiving!! 

Friday, November 16, 2012

Guest Post: Learning {One Day At A Time}

One of the things I love most about blogging, is connecting and building relationships with people from around the world. Ruth resides in the UK and we "met" through another Christian blogger and fast became friends. Our conversations on Twitter are always positive and uplifting and I eagerly look forward to her blog posts because she is a gifted writer. Ruth writes with a certain vulnerability that is absolutely beautiful. So, without further ado, I lovingly hand my blog over to Ruth.


My name is Ruth, I'm 26 years old and married with two children.  I had a difficult childhood and became a mum at 16, but God has never relaxed His hold on me. He is taking me on a journey of faith, and through my blog, I'm sharing what I learn along the way.

Let’s set the scene.  That day, Jesus had taken one boy’s small offering of five loaves and two small fish and had turned them into enough food to feed five thousand.  An astounding miracle, causing an excited crowd to realise that this was the Messiah.  But refusing to be made ‘a king by force’; to assume worldly titles; Jesus withdrew from the crowd and went to be by himself (see John 6:15).

‘That evening Jesus’ disciples went down to the shore to wait for him.  But as darkness fell and Jesus still hadn’t come back, they got into the boat and headed across the lake toward Capernaum.’  John 6:16-17

While it was light, they waited – but as darkness fell, they jumped in a boat and headed off without Him.  Maybe they were afraid; maybe just impatient and eager to reach their destination.  The accounts in Matthew and Mark indicate that Jesus may have actually told them to go on ahead.  But either way, they had left Him behind.  How many times in our own lives do we stop waiting on God and jump in the boat without Him?  It’s growing darker where we are and we’re desperate to get to where we’re going, so we set out alone and hope for the best.

‘Soon a gale swept down upon them, and the sea grew very rough.  They had rowed three or four miles when suddenly they saw Jesus walking on the water toward the boat.  They were terrified.’  John 6:18-19

To be alone in a storm is unnerving.  To be alone in a boat, in the dark, in a storm – then to see someone walking towards you on water?  Terrifying.  When we find ourselves caught up in storms, we may struggle to recognize God in the midst of it.  At times like this it’s hard not to fall overboard – but thankfully, God never abandons us (see Hebrews 13:5).

‘But he called out to them, “Don’t be afraid. I am here!”‘  John 6:20

They set off without Him, but still He came.  And Jesus was not merely reassuring His disciples here, He was reminding them who He was.  The Greek here translates to: ‘I Am. Stop being frightened’,  just as God told Moses: ‘I AM who I am.  Tell them I Am has sent you’ (see Exodus 3:14).  Jesus was telling them that He is God and they must not be afraid.  ‘I Am’.  They would be safe now.

‘Then they were eager to let him in the boat, and immediately they arrived at their destination!’  John 6:21

Frightened by the storm, but now calmed by His presence, they now welcomed Jesus on board.  When this incident is described the gospels of Matthew and Mark, we see that Jesus calmed the storm.  In John, we see that He took them out of it – instantly, they arrived at that place which they had been unsuccessfully trying to reach by their own efforts.  They were so close to their destination – they just needed to allow Jesus into the boat.

As hard as it when our lives are at their darkest and we are afraid, we must keep seeking God in the midst of our storms.  When we have set off without Him, it is not too late to invite him on board.  And when we are in that difficult period of waiting on Him, eager to take the next step; becoming discouraged as the dark sets in; we must continue to trust in His perfect timing.  In the midst of the storm, be still and know that He is God. ‘I Am’.


Thank you, Ruth, for these beautiful words! 

In the midst of the storms of life, have you encountered the Great 'I AM?'
What was that experience like?

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Guest Post: Notice the Dirt

To say that I am grateful that God allowed my path to cross with Sarah's is an understatement. I have absolutely loved getting to know Sarah over the course of this year and I am determined to meet her in real life! She is intelligent, witty, and a tremendous source of encouragement. 
It is an honor to turn the blog over to you today, my friend!


Hi!  I'm Sarah, and I blog at Notice the Dirt where I'm inspired by this C.S. Lewis Quote: "It is when we notice the dirt that God is most present in us; it is the very sign of His presence."  Megan and I “met” as part of a blogging workshop and both quickly realized two things we had in common:  loving Jesus and training for long distance races.  It’s been so fun to follow her progress on both fronts and I can say without reservation that Megan runs the race well!

I've been a runner off and on for most of my life.  In elementary school, I loved nothing more than time spent racing my classmates on our school’s track.  Y’all, I was fast.  I won fitness day races and was amazed at my own speed.  In middle and high school I was in to running “suicides” and sprints since I’d become a huge fan of playing basketball.  In college I tried jogging for regular exercise but it never really stuck.  I was physically active otherwise, as a member of our school’s color guard and a regular visitor to the gym, so the freshman 15 never appeared and I was too busy having fun to add more exercise to my day.

It wasn't until my early twenties that running became a necessity.  I absolutely had to do something to relieve work- and life-related stress.  I found myself working 60 and 70 hour weeks while also trying complete graduate school and my physical and psychological health were coming unraveled.  As time went on, I finished grad school but my work life was more chaotic and my personal life suffered.  As I neared 30, I was working from home and putting in more hours than ever.  I felt isolated, exhausted and hopeless.
I had begun jogging on the treadmill at my apartment complex gym and while I was pounding the stress out with my feet, an important relationship was budding.  My immense stress had begun to manifest as despair, depression.  As I ran, my mind would wander to my circumstances and as I’d feel more and more discouraged, I’d start to talk to God.
“Why is life like this?  What did I do wrong? Why have you doomed me, God?”
My prayers weren't healthy – they were accusatory, angry – but they were prayers.  I would get so lost in these prayers, I would forget that I was running, and the number of miles I could complete kept ticking up.  On especially bad or stressful days, I’d set my treadmill to an impossible speed and angrily sprint away, and as always, I was talking to God.
A few years ago, after telling a friend that I didn't like to run with a buddy, I realized that was because the spot had already been filled.  God had been my running partner all along.  He’d endured mile after mile of complaining and griping and had never turned around to go home early.  Like the best of friends, He’d just listened. 
I felt guilty for all my whining and knew I had to change the conversation.
These days, as I run around my new island town in Hawaii, I look at the scenery and thank God that I've got such a pretty “gym”.  I thank God for my husband who sometimes waits along my route with a bottle of water and encouraging words.  I thank God for giving me strong legs and a stubborn personality – the perfect mix for completing long distance runs.  I ask God for strength.  I tell Him that I can’t finish the race unless He keeps running with me, and of course, He always does. 
God calls us to a real and personal relationship with Him, and I’m forever blessed that in our relationship, God is my running buddy.

Do you share your hobbies with God?


Thank you for sharing with us, Sarah! You run the race well, my friend! Keep it up.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Guest Post: Red-Dirt-Mama

Do y'all miss me as much as I miss you?!
 I am excited to introduce this next guest blogger, as she is a very special friend of mine .

April is a real life friend from our college days at ETBU. Though we live hours away from each other now, it has been fun keeping up with her and her sweet family via her blog. (Isn't technology wonderful?!)

When it comes to blogging, April is apart of my "inner circle" because she not only knows me as writer at {All Things New} but she knows me in real life as well. And because I desire authenticity in my writing, I look to April to help keep me accountable to that goal. I love her dearly and I am sure you will too!


HI! My name is April and I blog over at Red Dirt Mama. I write about my life, crafts, faith, and food on my blog. This may be a little more private than something I would usually write for a guest post, but this was laid on my heart. Thank you, Megan, for letting me share this with your friends!

 When I found out I was pregnant with Bluebelle, it was the most terrifying day of my life. Minutes before I took that test -- the one that blinked "Pregnant" in mere seconds -- I was printing a letter announcing my resignation. The situation was dire enough that I didn't think I could remain, no matter how mournful I was over leaving some of the most cherished people in my life. Then I took that test. What were we going to do? How would we survive? How could I bring a child into this world this way? Two weeks later, I was no longer employed, and this time it was not of my own choosing. A month later we were living in a terrible housing situation. Two months after that, I was home in my grandparents' house, seeking humility and assistance and feeling lower than the lowest creature on the earth. I was terrified at a time that I was angry with God. I felt lost. Abandoned. Forgotten. When I first held Bluebelle in my arms, I realized I had not been forgotten. He gave her to me. To us. This perfect, sweet little bundle of joy, the culmination of all our hopes and fears wrapped up in a package more perfect that I could have ever imagined. I look back on that time, now in the realm of being years ago, and I see how we were being carried through. I don't remember having anything more than a weak faith, but I remember the fear. I remember the reassurance after we had passed through it, and we learned so much about ourselves in the process. I've learned to try to not take anything for granted. I try to remember that every day. Lately I've been reminding myself of these times. I have fears, I really do. They are almost crippling to me. However, at this stage in my life I am trying to see the faith in the midst of the fear. I am remembering past promises and clinging to them with the hope and knowledge that He has gotten me through things before and He will be there again. I believe that God is with us even when our faith is weak. I am thankful that He loves us and carries us even when we can't see anything more than the smallest glimmer of hope. For the past several years my favorite passage has been the entirety of Philippians 4. Below are verses 10-13.
10 But I rejoiced in the Lord greatly, that now at last you have revived your concern for me; indeed, you were concerned before, but you lacked opportunity. 11 Not that I speak from want, for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am. 12 I know how to get along with humble means, and I also know how to live in prosperity; in any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and suffering need. 13 I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.
I spent many years visually burnt out on Philippians 4:13, but I believe today that the verse is far more powerful in context than it ever is alone. Paul is saying that he can do anything in Christ, but only in the light of having both NOTHING and EVERYTHING. God can work through us in the midst of terrible loss. He is there when we have nothing of the world's value. God is God of the blessings, as well as the times of great need. Recognizing His sovereignty in every situation brings peace and contentment in any circumstance. I am so thankful for His peace. When I remember these things - His past faithfulness, His truth -- I have faith no matter how afraid I am. It doesn't stop the waves of fear from hitting me unexpectedly, but I can give those moments away to Him and experience His peace and know that I will be okay, even if I don't know what lies ahead. Faith in the presence of fear. It's a powerful thing.


Thank you for sharing your heart with us April. I praise God that He is Faithful despite our doubt and fear and that He chooses to reward us for even the smallest steps of faith! 
What an encouragement you are to me!

Have you ever experienced a time in your life when God blew you away with His faithfulness?

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Guest Post: Just a Small Town Girl

I am incredibly thankful to have several blog {and real life} friends that I can call on to guest post for me while I am away. Our first guest post comes from a sweet blog friend of mine, Megan, who blogs over at Just a Small Town Girl. You have heard me mention Megan before, as I frequently share her passion for helping families who are currently adopting through her fundraiser, Ornaments for Adoption. If you haven't done so, go check out her work! The ornaments are adorable!! 

So, without further ado, I am going to turn the blog over to Megan.


Hello {All Things New} readers!
I am Megan and I blog over at Just a Small Town Girl and that's what I am-a girl from a small town in Alabama who is now living in a bigger city in North Carolina. I basically blog about my life and the things I think, create, and do along the way. I am so excited to be sharing with you today.

Archery has become a very popular sport thanks to a little book turned movie called The Hunger Games.
Haha...seriously. I've always thought archery was cool.

My hubby loves to bow hunt.

He's always trying to convince me to get one of those fancy hunting bows. I'm not interested. I'd love to just have a plain long bow.

But I'm getting off topic here. So, why all this archery talk?
The point of shooting a bow is to hit a target.
You can also hit a target with a gun and since my hubby doesn't think I need a long bow, this is the only target picture I have.
If you're like me, you are off the mark more than you are on target.

In the same way, we miss the target of God's standard in our lives.
God calls us to be holy and perfect.
for it is written: “Be holy, because I am holy.”
-1 Peter 1:16
Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.
-Matthew 5:48

I am not holy or perfect. I fail every day and so do you.
  for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God
-Romans 3:23

Hamartano is a Greek word which means to miss the mark. In the same way that an archer can miss the target, we miss the mark of the target of God's standard for our life.

Related to the word, hamartano, is another Greek word, hamartia, which is translated into English as sin.

sin=missing the mark of God's standard

I don't know about you, but this makes it so clear to me. When we sin, we are falling short of the way God has called us to live.

Because of this sin, we deserve to die.
And you were dead in your trespasses and sins
-Ephesians 2:1

But wait, there's good news! God did not leave us in this dead state. He has made a way for us to hit the target.
The way comes from another Greek word. This word is my favorite.
The word is charis and it means undeserved gift (grace).
God gave us an undeserved gift in that He sent His son, Jesus to die for our sin, for our hamartia, for all those times we missed the mark.
For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God
-Ephesians 2:8
But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
-Romans 5:8

Now when we accept God's gift, does this mean that we suddenly become "perfect archers" and hit the target every time?
No! We will continue to sin. We will continue to miss the mark.
But Jesus' blood is now covering us and covering that sin.

Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.
-Romans 8:1
Isn't that beautiful? 
Despite the fact that we continuously miss the mark, God gives us an undeserved gift. He adopts us into His family where we can experience His forgiveness and love. 
I hope you haven't let yourself get defeated by missing the mark. I hope you have found God's free gift. If you have any questions, I would love to talk with you or pray for you {and I'm sure Megan would as well}. 
Thanks to Megan for allowing me to guest post today and thank you to her wonderful followers for reading! 


Thank you, Megan, for sharing with us! And yes, I would absolutely love to talk or pray over any of you if you are struggling with accepting God's free gift of salvation. I know it can be difficult at times to wrap your head around the depth of such love. 

If you would like to talk, or desire to share a prayer request with me so I can pray over you, 
email me at megan {dot} card {at} gmail {dot} com

Monday, November 12, 2012

Disciple Now Weekend is HERE!

Hi friends! Things are going to be a little bit different on the blog this week as I take some time off to study and prepare my heart to lead a group of teenagers at our home church's annual Disciple Now. Greg and I look forward to this weekend every year and God never ceases to show up in BIG ways!

As you can see, there is no {Mornings with Meg} this week or next week. We will resume our normal schedule after the holidays.

 I have asked several friends of mine to guest post for me while I am away. I am honored to know each of these women. They are truly remarkable in many ways and I know you will love them! I've informed them that I have the sweetest blog readers on the planet, so please don't be shy, and make each of them feel welcome!

While I am away, will you please pray for us?

  • That the enemy will be kept at bay. It never fails- there is heavy spiritual warfare both leading up to, and during the weekend itself. In the 7 years that I have been a small group leader for this church, I have never experienced spiritual warfare of this magnitude. This just means that God has something BIG in mind for these students! Will you join me in bathing them in prayer?

  • The weather has been obnoxiously inconsistent as of late, and as a result, this causes my fibromyalgia to flare up. This is especially hard during a weekend of little sleep and high energy. Will you pray for physical strength and that the Lord will sustain me over the course of the weekend?

  • That the Lord will reveal Himself in a fresh, new way, to all who are making this weekend happen. From the youth staff, host homes and cooking coordinators- to the group leaders and students; I  pray that we all will walk away from this weekend having had a personal encounter with the Lord.

  • Pray that God will do something unexpected. Unplanned. May the hearts of those in attendance be soft and receptive to what He has in store for us.

  • And lastly, will you pray for those whose eternity has yet to be secured in Christ; that they will not walk away from this weekend without knowing where they stand. Will you pray that their hearts will be open and receptive to the Gospel? 

I will miss you all dearly this week, but I know that you are in good hands.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Five Minute Friday: Quiet

1. Write for 5 minutes flat – no editing, no over thinking, no backtracking.
2. Link back here and invite others to join in.
3. And then absolutely, no ifs, ands or buts about it, you need to visit the person who linked up before you & encourage them in their comments. Seriously. That is, like, the rule. And the fun. And the heart of this community..

Last week was my very first time to link up with Lisa-Jo  for Five Minute Friday, and I am so glad that I did! Not only was the free writing surprisingly liberating, but I was able to connect and engage with some rather remarkable sisters in Christ. And for all of my Five Minute Friday friends, I host a link up every Thursday called {faith} filled life. We'd love to have you!

Okay- coffee consumed. Timer set. And....


Quiet. Peace. The secret- hidden place.

It is the place I long for each morning.

As the stillness settles over the house, I grab my cup of coffee, Bible, journal and pen and set out to meet Him. I can still hear the subtle sounds of heavy breathing coming from the bedrooms where my boys sleep. The sound soothes me as I nestle into my favorite spot on the couch. A gentle lullaby to a Mother's ear that could easily lull me back to sleep... only... I'm meeting Someone. And He is found in this secret, quiet, still place of my heart- so I mustn't rush this, because I long to hear from Him this morning.


Oh, how my heart leaps for joy at the sound of His voice! It still amazes me that the God of the universe would choose to meet with me. That He would desire a relationship with me. Amazing love! Amazing grace!


Thursday, November 8, 2012

{faith} filled life: Week #17

All Things New

The purpose of this link up is to put the abundant goodness of God on display for all nations to see!

Write a blog post and share with us how God is currently working in your life. It can be a passage of Scripture that God has used to speak to you. A devotional. A song that particularly ministered to you. A poem that you wrote or were inspired by. A photograph that you took. A personal testimony of God's grace. A call to action. A challenge. Use your creativity, for it is a magnificent gift given to us by the Creator Himself! 

If you are on Twitter or Instagram, use the hash tag #faithfilledlife to follow along with others.  Feel free to grab a button and share this link up with your readers. Let's continue to make much of Jesus.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

On this Election Day...

On this election day...

Heaven is not trembling in fear- anxiously awaiting the outcome of this Presidential election. 

ALL leaders- whether Kings, Prime Ministers, Dictators, and yes, even Presidents, can not... nor will they ever, rise to power apart from God's Sovereignty. "For there is no authority except from God, and those which exist are established by God." (Romans 13:1, emphasis mine) All civil government has been established and ordained by God to accomplish His redemptive work- for His Kingdom purpose. Yes- even the Hitlers and Stalins among us.

Though we may not understand the reasoning behind God's actions, we must remember that we are not always entitled to such understanding. "For My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways My ways," declares the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than your ways and My thoughts than your thoughts." (Isaiah 55:8-9, emphasis mine) We must, for it is imperative, remember Who is LORD over all and trust that His ways are good. Especially when we cannot comprehend His reasoning.

I am not here to say which candidate to vote for, and though I firmly believe in the right to freely express such an opinion, I however, understand that there are times when it is best not to. And for me, now is such a time. My message is simple: Fear not!

If you are a follower of Christ- fear not! For He has, He is, and He will forever be Sovereign over His creation. So no matter what the outcome of this election may be- fear not- for there is nothing that can thwart His Kingdom purpose. Nothing. 

Monday, November 5, 2012

Xenon Project Giveaway

Just in time for the holidays!

I cannot believe we are already in the month of November. Is it just me, or has this year literally flown by? 

Many of you have already set out in search for the perfect gift for your loved ones, and if you are anything like me, shopping for the men in your life (Dad, husband, son, nephew, boyfriend) can be a challenge in and of itself. Well- look no further- because I have the PERFECT gift in mind: a remote control helicopter provided by my friends over at Xenon Project

The Syma S102G UH-60 Black Hawk Gyro Helicopter is equipped with a 4-in-1 infra-red receiver (Gyro, ESC, Mixer, Receiver). This palm size Helicopter (8.5 inches long) has a very beautiful and detailed fuselage, decorated with flashing LED, the visual effect is great, especially in a soft light indoor area. The Syma Mini Helicopter Series is able to move in 3 Direction base on the 3 Channels, anyone can hover it easily. Since it is very light weight, amazingly it is almost indestructible in any crash, perfect for very first time beginners. This toy helicopter is designed for anyone over 8 years old.

  • Rotate Clockwsie / Anti-Clockwise
  • Move Forward / Backward
  • Move Up / Down

In the Box

Remote Controller
USB Cable
Extra Tail Blade
User Manual

And for the ladies- don't forget to check out these customized ornaments and this heartfelt love story

So, who is the most difficult person to shop for on your Christmas list?

{Mornings with Meg} Names of God Series: Week 2

Rylan made his first public appearance on the blog today!

Don't forget, we have our FIRST Google + hangout tonight!! 
Join us at 8pm CST as we further discuss the Names of God with one another.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Sneak Peak!

As many of you may remember from this post, there are some exciting changes coming soon to the blog! And being the impatient type, I simply couldn't wait to share a sneak peak with you!

That's right- I'm getting my own domain!!!

And because we are still in that penny pinching phase due to the adoption, I've been learning how to do my own blog design. 

What do think?! 

Here is a sample of the blog buttons and social media icons that I have been working on for the new site.
I'll probably cave in at some point and hire an actual web designer- but for now- I'm pleased with how things are coming together. If any of you are experts in moving from Blogger to Wordpress- I'm all ears! 

Friday, November 2, 2012

Five Minute Friday: Roots

Oh. Wow. This is my FIRST time linking up with the amazing Lisa-Jo Baker for Five Minute Friday!!!

Five Minute Friday  

I have secretly envied this community of women and have watched them from a distance for quite some time now. I don't know why I was ever afraid to jump right into this incredible community of Christian women... but I was... I still am. Perhaps it was just that- they really are that incredible- and I did not know if I would fit in. 

But enough of that. 
I'm going to swallow my fear and take the plunge. 
I've been craving authentic community and maybe-just maybe- I will find it here. 

Today's prompt: Roots
I've got my timer set.... and.... GO!

Roots. We're supposed to be talking about roots. But all I can think about is my deep desire to be used by God. I want to be broken. Poured out. Spent. Utterly used for the glory of God. I desire to make a difference. But how? 

Sleepless nights. Restless days. God is stirring up something within me-but what is it? I sense that I am at a crossroads in my life. Maybe I am merely experiencing a mid-life crisis a decade early? I just cannot shake the feeling that God is at work.... that God is up to something- BIG! I just wish I could pin point what is on my mind. Receive some clarity- some focus. I feel so alone in my thoughts right now. So confused. 

Praise God that I am rooted deeply in Christ. He is Constant. Secure. Faithful. Never-changing. My Refuge and Strong Tower. Roots....


With an Open Heart: Review + Giveaway

Today begins national adoption awareness month. 
What better way to kick off the month of November than with another giveaway?! 

 Lisa unashamedly shares the joy, struggle, pain, and regrettably- the sorrow, that their family faced after bringing their son, Daniel, home from China. Grab a box of Kleenex as you read Daniel's story, and the profound impact this little boy had on those around him. This is a story of God's sovereignty and grace in the midst of tragedy and loss- but it does not end there. It is also a story of God's unconditional love for His children.

As I read Lisa's book, I was both challenged and reminded to cherish each moment that I have with my sons- as they are an abundant gift from the Lord. 

Thank you, Lisa, for allowing me the opportunity to know Daniel- even if it was only in memory. It is an honor and my pleasure to pass along his story to my readers. 


A note from the author:

When Megan and I first began corresponding about advertising on her blog, I mentioned the idea of donating a portion of the proceeds to a charity for all sales of the book through All Things New. Megan was graciously open to my idea of allowing her to choose the charity.
My husband and I feel very strongly that part of our fundraising efforts, in Daniel’s memory, should be designated for families to help with the financial burden of adoption.  And then it was revealed to me— through our long string of email correspondence—that Megan’s family is struggling to fund their very own adoption from Ethiopia. I mulled it over for a couple of days, and then God put something in my heart. So…sorry Megan, I’ve decided to change things up a bit!
For all purchases made through All Things New, we will donate 10% to the Card family Adoption Fund!  Simply go to our website, and purchase the book through the PayPal prompts in the right column. You will see a drop-down menu of charity choices, so scroll down and choose “All Things New.”   Let’s help this family get their adoption process started! 
I thank you all in advance for opening your hearts to our family’s special project.  We hope that this story’s message of hope and faith inspire you to live, listen, and leap with an open heart!
 And if you happen to be traveling to Kansas City for the upcoming Women of Faith conference on November 2nd and 3rd, please stop by and see With an Open Heart featured in the BookStub Gallery! The first 50 visitors will receive a free download of our e-book format!

Lisa Murphy
Please “Like” us on Facebook!
cell: 561-441-5435


To say that I was utterly shocked when Lisa sent me this statement for this giveaway is an understatement. Lisa, if you are reading this-we are blown away with your family's generosity! A thousand times- thank you!

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Green Eggs and Ham: How Dr. Seuss Provided Me With a Proverbial Slap in the Face

"Again! Again! Pwwweeeease?! Read it again."

How you can deny the angelic pleading of a three year old is beyond me. Especially when that three year old is your own child. I had already read, 'Green Eggs and Ham' to him twice that very evening; and as I settled down next to him on his bed, he pressed his head against my shoulder and grinned because he knew that I had succumbed to his demands. 

I am Sam.

Sam- I-am.

That Sam- I -am!
That Sam- I -am!
I do not like that Sam-I -am.

Do you like green eggs and ham?

I think I read 'Green Eggs and Ham' a total of five times over the course of the evening, and then once more the following morning as he and I sat in line at the school drop off. Who knows? I lost count.

 While I was driving home this morning after dropping Rylan off at preschool, I wondered why he was so insistent on reading this particular book over and over again. I know that this is typical behavior for a child his age, but I couldn't shake the feeling that there was something more- that he had a specific reason for wanting only Mommy to read this story to him. 

I later came to realize that, to Rylan, my reading 'Green Eggs and Ham' had became synonymous with my presence. Each time I would read this story to him, he had my undivided attention. Apparently, that was exactly what he was craving. My presence.

This children's story provided me with a proverbial slap in the face- and I needed it. 

I had lost my focus and did not even realize it until this moment. I had grown far more excited over the response that I was getting on the blog, and the impact that I was having on people I will most likely never meet this side of heaven, than I was in the lives of my own children. Please do not misunderstand me, I love all of you- dearly- and God has used this blog in more ways than I could have ever imagined; but I love my children more.

 I still firmly believe that I am taking this blog in the direction the Lord is leading, but I have to wonder if I am doing too much, too soon? Is my current blogging schedule taking too much of my time away from my children?

I have come to the conclusion that yes, it is. I will still be writing a few times throughout the week, and we will still continue the Names of God Bible study- only, it will now be reduced to Monday mornings instead of every single day. And we will still have our Google+ hangout every Monday evening (starting Nov 5th) at 8 CST to further discuss as a community what was taught earlier that day.

Yet again, I have over promised and under-delivered, and I am sorry. Deeply sorry. I do hope that you will forgive me. I just cannot justify the amount of time that I am currently spending on the blog- especially given that this is something extra that I get to do- a hobby so to speak. My first responsibility is to my family. 

Thank you, Dr. Seuss, for providing me with this much needed wake up call.

{Mornings with Meg} Day One: El Roi

El Roi- "The God Who Sees Me"

Pronounced (El raw-EE)

Key Text- Genesis 15-21

Key characters-

Abram (More commonly known as Abraham- forefather of the nation Israel)
Sarai (Abram's wife. Later the Lord names her Sarah)
Hagar (Egyptian maidservant to Sarai)
Ishmael (Son of Abram and Hagar)
Isaac (Son of Abraham and Sarah. The Lord changed their names in Genesis 17, prior to Isaac's birth.)

Setting the Scene-

The Hebrew name for God, "El Roi" only occurs once in Scripture, in Genesis 16:13.

Then she [Hagar] called the name of the LORD who spoke to her, "You are a God who sees..."
*emphasis mine

However, to better understand the emotion and meaning behind the name, we must first look at Genesis 15. Beginning in verse 2, we see that Abram and God are having a discussion regarding Abram's childless state. Abram's wife, Sarai, is barren and Abram is distraught over the idea that one of his male servants, Eliezar, would become heir and guardian over his estate- as was customary at that time. In verse 4, God- in His complete Sovereignty- informs Abram that He has other plans.

"This man will not be your heir, but one who will come forth from your own body, he shall be your heir." -Genesis 15:4
God then takes Abram outside to look toward heaven and promises Abram that He will make his descendants as numerous as the stars.

Fast forward many years later. Abram and Sarai have yet to conceive and bring forth the child God had promised. Sarai grows impatient, doubting that God will keep His promise, and therefore decides to take matters into her own hands. She gives Abram her maidservant (Hagar) over as his wife, so that she may obtain a child through her (Genesis 16: 2). Her plan succeeded. Hagar conceived and was with child- only- Sarai was furious and treated Hagar harshly (Genesis 16:4-6). Hagar therefore fled to the wilderness in fear and this is where she encounters the Lord- El Roi.

Key Points-

1. God calls Hagar by name (Genesis 16:8)
       -God is an extremely personal God and He cares for you intimately. He calls you by name!

2. God sees you right where you are and He knows where you are going (Genesis 16:9-12).

       -Hagar, an Egyptian slave, was pregnant and far from home. Abandoned...alone...she felt forgotten and betrayed by all who knew her. As a foreigner, YHWEH was not her god, and yet... He saw her and drew near to her. She had not escaped His notice. YOU- have not escaped His notice.

3. God has not forgotten you (Genesis 21: 9-21).

      -Once again, we find Hagar in the wilderness, only this time she is accompanied by her son, Ishmael. Sarah saw Ishmael as a threat to her son's (Isaac) inheritance and called for Abraham to send them from her sight. After what little provision Abraham gave them was depleted, Hagar fully expected to watch Ishmael die there in the desert. Yet, God heard their cries of desperation and promises them hope and a future-by making a great nation from the descendants of Ishmael (Genesis 21:17-20). He had not forgotten Hagar and Ishmael. He has not forgotten you. In HIM we can find hope and a future.


Praying the Name:

Take some time to read and reflect on Genesis 15-21 and Psalm 33:13-15; 18-19. 
Praise God for the following:

*He sees you 
You have not escaped His notice

* His watchful care

*His faithfulness to hear your prayers

*His timely help

*His Sovereignty

*Upholding His promises