Thankfulness Challenge- My Pastor Husband Pastor’s Appreciation Motnth

husband

The  missed oppertunity

I have been re-reading some past blog posts, and do you know what I realized?  I don’t blog very much about my husband!!  That’s mostly because I respect his desire to not be put into the spotlight  and it’s not that I am choosing to disrespect his wishes today BUT there are some days that you have to give credit where credit is due.

I was doing some prep work for a blog post for later today and I was overcome by the amazingness of my husband.  The things not everyone gets to see . The things this man does and I get to support him in. The things I am sometimes  guilty of taking for granted.

His Many Hats

He wears many hats and God has gifted him the ability to do them well.  He and I have been married for almost 15 years.  We have 4 kids ages 12,11,alomst 10, and 7.  One has Autism and another has a learning disability known as Central Auditory Processing Disorder.  This is a huge part of his life but the other huge part is his calling to be pastor.   We have been at our current church for almost 9 years.  I have watched him spend countless hours ministering to people in some very unconventional ways.  He has the unique ability to meet people where they are, work side by side with them and create a relationship with them.  My husband is so dedicated to his call that he is constantly seeking to grow in it,  to learn and grow deeper his relationship with Christ.  I have watched him pour countless hours into people, to shed tears on their behalf and still treat them with the love of Jesus when he is hurt by them.    He is a real leader who can lead without an iron fist or micromanage the people he is leading.  He also takes time to to fix broken things at church. He runs errands for church.  he runs errands for home and as I looked at the calendar page for October I noticed there were things missing from his weekly activities

  • Phone call
  • emails
  • texts
  • visits
  • people in crisis
  • emergencies
  • last minute meetings
  • Prep for sermons
  • prep for 2 Bible studies  a week

And this doesn’t even begin to cover family things like convent care trips and the like.

He as a person

Though he will tell you otherwise he is intelligent and skilled in communicating the word of God.  I have watched him painstakingly pour over God’s word sometimes changing his sermon multiple times to be sure to bring God’s truth, even if it stings deep within his own soul.  and with that goes transparency of his heart sharing both from the pulpit and in private his struggles.  He does not view himself as higher or better than another.  He has strove to continue to grow in his education, that enables him to sharpen and fine tune his skills.

One of the greatest things about this man that I count as a blessing from God is his desire to do whatever it is he has set his hand to, and to do it well.  Many people don’t get a chance to see this, but I count it a privilege to get a front row seat.   To the countless hours counseling in person at our table, on the phone and via text message (yes that really can happen). I get to watch him wear himself thin as he goes from one meeting to the next, ones where he spends hours, days and weeks praying for and pouring over.  I count it a privilege to  Get to be the one who shares in his greatest joys and his deepest sorrows.  I have watched him help others try to pick up shattered pieces of great disappointments.

People are important to Him

He makes time for everyone though that is rarely seen .  It is done  in secret to protect those who are hurting.  He holds so much  between him and God even I do not know all that he has been told.  He drops his plans, and desires to run to the aid of another.  He changes  his work schedule to meet others needs and has done so, most jobs would have fired him.  And this is why  some days our grass is not mowed or the garbage has not been taken to the transfer station.  He views our cars and home as not our own but those things belong to God, things to be used for His service. They are just on loan to us to be used for God’s work.

Care for our family

Most people don’t realize that he is the sole driver of our family.  Something he committed to nearly 16 years ago when he asked me to marry him.  He knew it was highly unlikely that I would never be able to see well enough to drive.  So sermons are prepared as I take care of kids appointments, emails are sent and visits are made in-between  all the craziness.  He is an amazing multi-taskr.  he uses every spare moment he can.

A week  ago I posted this picture of something that is rare.

pastor husband

We had already

  • y picked up kids at 11:45
  • ate lunch
  • took headache medicine to the other child at school
  • gone to two parent teacher conferences
  • worked
  • sermon prep

The poor guy had a migraine.  And had about a half an hour before we had to eat dinner and leave for Awana.  When I posted the picture to social media it was about the cat.  She doesn’t snuggle with just anyone.  She likes him a lotAnd there were very supportive comments on social media.  BUT comments came outside of social media that were not so kind. And that is sad.  For a  man who rarely if ever takes time for himself, who pours so much of himself into others.  Who seeks to build community and build others up.  Who gives everything he has and then some. Who bends over backwards for anyone who asks his help.

I am truly sorry I posted it….for the flack he has taken.

So Grateful

  1. So for all of this I want to take the time to thank God for all that he does both the seen and the unseen.  The 80+ hours per week for church the 10-20 hours a week for his other job and the countless hours for our family.  His ministry is so far deeper than most can imagine, even within the community.
  2. I am grateful that he loves us and takes care of us.  Enough to step up and provide in different ways.  that he makes sure we always have working vehicles. that he makes sure that we are cared for.
  3. I am thankful that I get to watch.  I get a front row seat to his ministry, our ministry together.This also means that sometimes the seats up close see the messy things too.  Those moments when people are so wrapped up in themselves to see what is really going on.   Im so grateful he includes me.  so many pastors and wives live two separate lives. I saw it while we were in seminary. Couples who did their own things, separately.  When I am leading Bible study, he is watching the ladies kids.  He helps  with the RGT conference.  He has mentored young men alongside me at the Pregnancy center, reaching deep into the messiness of our community.
  4. I am so grateful to get to watch him grow into the man God always knew he would be.   It’s huge blessing to see him step out and try new things to gain boldness.
  5. To watch him give his whole life to Jesus in service.  That he holds nothing back. To sacrifice.

To My Pastor

In Short during this month dedicated to showing appreciation to  our pastors.  I want to say a great BIG thank you.

Thank you for being a selfless example of what a godly man should be, not only for our own children but to the kids who know and love you!

Thank you for reaching me every Sunday , and every other day what the Bible teaches.  I love sitting under your teaching and I learn so much.

Thank you  for teaching me how to show love and grace through the good, the bad and the ugly.

AND THANK YOU for asking me to be apart of this journey with you 15 years ago.  Thank you for seeing me as God does, as a women with potential NOT just as I am a broken imperfect person.

I will gladly serve with you another 15 years and until God sees fit to call us  Home!

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Write 31-Day 1 – Why Confidence?

ConfidenceI know I know, it’s day 2 and I am already behind.  That’s because I have been wrestling with….you guessed it a lack of confidence.  It has been something that I have wrestled with since I was very young.  And I must confess right here and right now that some of this has to do with my personality and then some of that REALLY has to do with circumstances that have happened as well.

And that leads me to tonight’s topic, WHY CONFIDENCE?

Well last year at this time I was beginning to really contemplate my word for the following year.  But life was about to get CRAZY!  We went from a household of 6 to a household of ten.  The circumstances of that change is not something to be discussed on the internet, but it was something both hubby and I felt very strongly that hubby and I were called to do.  And to this day we will stand by that decision and we are glad we did!  But in all of this I came to become glaringly aware that I doubted almost all that I did.  But as I prayed about this new found fear that gripped my life I began to pray….HARD! And you know what I realized?  It has ALWAYS been there.

Fear of doing the wrong things ruled my life.

Fear of making people angry.

Fear of disappointing people.

Fear of failure.

Fear of Failure to make the wrong choice.

Fear of ruining someone else’s life.

FEAR ran my life.

Fear is the antithesis of confidence.  Fear gives control to someone else. HMMMM.

I cannot pin down the moment that confidence became my word in January of this year but I knew it two or three weeks into January when the lightbulb finally went on.  Then came the study, searching out the verse that would become my verse for the year and I landed in the book of Jeremiah

Jeremiah 17:7-8 NIV

7.  “But blessed is the one who trusts the Lord,

whose confidence is in Him

8.  They will be like a tree  planted by the water

that sends out its roots by the stream.

It does not fear when heat comes;

its leaves are always green.

It has no worries a year of drought

and never fails to bear fruit.

WOW WOW WOW

Did you catch all that verse  said?  Well Have no fear, WE ARE GOING TO BREAK IT DOWN!

Because this is so important for ALL of us to understand.

So That is why confidence.  I needed confidence .   But not just confidence in myself either.  I have NOTHING to offer.  Despite all my friends thinking I am the strongest person they know, That is a direct quote people .  I stand back and I look at myself in the mirror and I see this weak, broken person who doubts every  little thing.  I needed a bigger answer.  I needed God-fidence .  It did me absolutely no earthly good to have confidence in me.  I had nothing to offer outside of what Christ has done in me.  I was fearful.

Now the thing is I am still fearful.  I am 9 months into this journey.  I have not arrived and I have to give that fearfulness over to God, and realize He is far bigger than me.

So even though I lack confidence when …

I am fearful, He is  all-knowing and all-powerful

I am weak, He is strong.

I fail, he ALWAYS succeeds.

I am not enough for whoever, He is always enough for everyone AT ALL TIMES!

I am imperfect, He is perfect.

And there is so much more.

I know this word places a high value on self-confidence.  Even the church does.  Because only the self-confident will stand up for themselves.  But I am here to tell you that standing up for yourself, tearing another person down to get your point across and voicing your pet peeves is NOT a biblical principle.( NOTE:: There  is a difference between  fighting for your  ” self imposed rights” versus  your physical safety.  If you find yourself in danger LEAVE!!). Fight for what God says is right not what you think should be right!  That is called entitlement.

Time and again we are told not to fight for ourselves but that God will fight for us.

Bible Knowledge .Com lists out 29 verses that Talks all about relying on God  to fight for us!

May I encourage you to look at the verses tonight and tomorrow.  Then tomorrow we will delve into my verse for the year and we will be discussing what God-fidence REALLY looks like.

And then hopefully later tomorrow I will get caught up with Day 3 and we will look at the differences between self confidence and God-fidence.

Have a GREAT NIGHT

Blessings

Mary

Happy Homemaker Monday 9/252017

6-12-2017

Happy Monday to all my wonderful friends I wanted to say sorry I haven’t been around in quite a while I was reluctantly forced into a blogging break as we have been running into a crazy schedule and then (GASP) my computer kicked the bucket…for good! so I had to wait for my new one!  so she is here and it has been so much fun getting aquatinted with her!   you will get to catch a glimpse of her further down!  Well I hope you have a wonderfully splendid week…I hear it is actually supposed to turn fall like by the end of this week!

So on with the Happy Homemaking

The weather:::  HOT! As in the 90’s  The hottest it has been all summer long (AND it is a few days into fall)

On my reading pile::: My Bible One thousand Gifts And a bunch of others

Movies or Shows I watched this weekend::: Fixer Upper

On my TV::: A Movie on PureFlix

On the menu for this week:::

Monday Cheesy Chicken Pasta Bake
Tuesday- Beef Stroganoff
Wednesday-Chicken and Dumplings
Thursday-Grilled Cheese and soup
Friday -Beef Stew
Saturday- sandwiches before the hayride, hotdogs after
Sunday-Meatball Subs

On The To-Do List::  What’s not on the to-do list.  Life has been so incredibly busy that I just kinda feel like everything needs looked after right now!!

What I am sewing, crocheting, knitting or creating:::  I am working on decorations for The Raising Generations Today Conference next month….watch for a sneak peek in the next couple of days…EEK I am so EXCITED!!!

Happening this week:::CRAZINESS…church haired. Bible studies at least three and RGT planning meeting and the list goes o and on

Looking around the house::: I’d rather look outside to be honest

From the camera:::Happy

The new laptop and her lovely accessories

What I’m wearing today:::well I have had two outfits on today  Both of which included my walk for Life T-shirt and I had khakis on for little beans appointment and then I changed into blu capris when I got home

One of my simple pleasures:::  sitting outside.  I don’t care what I’m doing but I love to sit outside and enjoy Creation

Bible verse, Devotional:::   This week I will be meditating on my verse for the year

Jeremiah 17:7-8New International Version (NIV)

“But blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord,
    whose confidence is in him.
They will be like a tree planted by the water
    that sends out its roots by the stream.
It does not fear when heat comes;
    its leaves are always green.
It has no worries in a year of drought
    and never fails to bear fruit.”

For More Happy Homemaker Posts Check out Diary of a Stay At Home Mom

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A Wild Life, Living Wildly for Jesus

wildly

So Our summer has been WILDLY  BUSY with so many things!

Wildly Exhausting

Wildly Exciting

Wildly Full of Blessings

I guess you could say it was wildly WILD.

So It is growing ever closer to the end of September.  It’sFall already people and just in case your curious.  It is 86 degrees here in upstate New York.  It’s one of the warmest days of the…er…..Fall??

Honestly I have been so tired as of late I am ready to crawl into bed  at 830 most nights and I don’t want to get out until May.  Yeah it has been THAT kind of wild!

People I forgot the my youngest had to study spelling words and his verse for the week. It was THAT kind of wild.

two weeks ago I had some moments and a grabbed my laptop, my coffee ,  my Bible and planner and I sat  down at the kitchen table. I opened my laptop, pressed the power button and …….drumroll……..NOT A BLOOMING THING!  it was the first moments in what seemed like months, but in all seriousness it had only been a month and a half to write and my planner was just chock full of wild ideas!  Things like 50fun facts about our family, what I’m reading, a sneak peak into our weekly schedule and so on.  I was excited to say the least but there was nothing.  It had been charging on the kitchen table overnight.  So there was no reason for it not to turn on.

So I picked her up flipped her over. It was damp….apparently  our evil but lovable cat had found a glass of water.   I removed the hard plastic green case …more dampness and tears welled in my eyes..  It’s not that I am addicted to my computer in all reality I wish I could use it more.  My computer holds the power of words.  I rarely if ever use it for  anything more that the craft of writing or creating with my cricut.  It is like a friend that I tell my secrets too…And then post to the internet for all the world to see ( ok not really, I don’t post everything but I found the irony as I was typing that).  It also held 100’s of pictures and other documents like half written book reviews  blog posts and edited photos ready for blog posts.  (No speeches necessary on how I should have backed them all up). I gave myself the speech about 100 times in that first hour before hubby got home.    When hubby got home he opened the case,  all that was inside.  2 lowly drops of water…2!

We got a fan and dried that baby out. She turned on two separate times, all of which gave me a glimmer of hope and then she shut off 30 seconds later and each time I felt hope of her ever being normal again slip away.  Then Wednesday rolled  around Hubby had made an appointment an hour away to get her assessed.   He dropped me off at the pregnancy center and headed north.  An hound a half later I got a text message that simply said “all fixed”. my heart beat wildly!!  My reply

“Really?  How?”

There was no water damage she is just old (7 to be exact). she is a beast of a computer and has worked for me fantastically!  I was excited and I made plans for the next morning….only to be left staring at a black screen again!

A wild life can often lead to wild emotions

It’s funny how our emotions can take us from wildly excited to wildly sad and depressed OR wildly angry  in a matter of seconds.  I remember very distinctly 3 and  1/2 years ago as our Belgian Shepherd Daffy came running inside.  She hadn’t run in 3 months, she hadn’t laid down in a month or so. I was so excited I called hubby, excited that the medicine had helped….she ran in the front door, through the kitchen door where she fell over and died.  My wild excitement turned within seconds into screams of terror.  What happened??  Daffy was old she had a herniated disc  her neck.  Just the night before I asked a friend with veterinary experience how do you know when is the right time to put your faithful friend down .  I prayed that we would not have to make that choice I prayed God would take care of it.  He did, I just never expected it to happen quite like that .  Honestly we never do.

I’s what we do with the wildly crazy things in our life that shows our character.

SOOOO when wild things move into your house unexpectedly…like mice, a rat, squirrels, a swarm of  honey bees  or as the case this summer   FLEAS we need to ask ourselves what should my reaction be? (BTW we have had all of these critters in our current home at one time or another)

Two years ago every major appliance in our kitchen systematically died, are you ready for this?  Between Thanksgiving and Christmas, no joke!!! So when January rolled around  and our furnace bit the dust, we could have gotten discouraged but instead we through up our hands laughed wildly and said why not!!  It was seriously funny.  Never had we had to replace so many appliances.  that year we had also replaced both the washer and dryer in May.

When we follow Jesus wild things happen. (both Good and Bad)

There are so many things in our lives that when we look back we see just how wild the ride has been.  And when we see pieces fit together that we originally didn’t think were connected  we stand in wild amazement at who God really is.  His protection over situations that later we realize should have ended in a more horrific way.  And yet we don’t wildly praise the one who loves us so much.We stand in church services with our hands in our pockets.    We stand by silently as someone shares a miracle from their lives.  I love it when my wild friends shout AMEN.  I love it when my WILD friends look different than all the rest.  Yes they are crazy unicorn loving people, but what they love even more is Jesus.

They live wildly

They Love wildly

They bless wildly

They laugh wildly

They serve wildly

They show Jesus wildly.

So in the midst of all the wild things like appliances dying, homes being invaded by vermin, or your computer kicking the bucket…..OR in the midst of the wildly insane things like a cancer diagnosis, a pre-term baby, a developmental disability, a hurricane of record proportions  or how about you fill in the blank, Choose to follow Jesus wildly,   giving all of your life, seeking to please him with everything you’ve got!  Live Wildly for Jesus!

Did you have a wild summer?  What is holding you you back from living wildly for your Savior?

 

When Life Hands You a Detour…TAKE IT!

DetourSo I am not going to lie.  This week was UNEXPECTED!!!!   The last thing on my mind was spending an extra week at camp.  BUT the kids and I are here We were handed a detour  for at least part of this week.   so here I sit at my computer, the kids are resting in our camper (we just finished a pontoon boat ride around the lake) and I am sitting here at our rest stop on this detour.  But in all honesty it took both hubby and I awhile to get to this stop on the detour.

We got home Saturday after having two great week away, here at our home away from home.   It was relaxing and enjoyable and refreshing and both hubby and I came away   ready to jump in head first into ministry if.  As if we stop when we are on vacation.  If you know either one of us well you know that we breathe ministry.  It is just WHO WE ARE!  So the whole time away our brains work to plan pray and seek God’s direction for what He would have us to do!  We are fed.   We grow. We come home and jump right back in……but not this time…this time had some detours!

What Happened

When we hit the city next t our  town we stopped at Was-Mart to make a purchase because we were given a heads up on Thursday that there was an issue in our house, so we were coming into the situation prepared…or so we thought.  Detour #1 leaving Was-Mary and half way home, we noticed our brakes smoking ..our big truck has this problem every six months with the brakes.  So that needs to be fixed.   Check Continue reading »