Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Greater love

Jesus showed us once and for all what He is like and what kind of love He has for us, by dying on the cross. And that is fact. History.

Nothing, no circumstance, no matter how hard or painful can change that. He has showed us His character once and for all.

Our circumstances are not the window through which we understand His love, but rather we must view our circumstances through His love.

(Elisabeth Elliot: A Path Through Suffering)

"Greater love has no one than this,
than to lay down one's life for his friends."
-John 15:13

Monday, August 27, 2007

Jeremiah 50:2, 42

"Set up a standard...Set in array, like a man for battle..."

Like Daniel, it is purposing beforehand to do what we know to be right. (Daniel 1:8) Then -- when the enemy advances and tempts us, we have already decided our course of action: obedience.

The man that believes will obey; failure to obey is convincing proof that there is no true faith present. To attempt the impossible God must give faith or there will be none and He gives faith the the obedient heart only.
-A. W. Tozer

"Fight the good fight of faith,
lay hold on eternal life, to which you were called..."
1 Timothy 6:12

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Beholding His Glory

As some of my family and I went into prison again last night, it was with prayerful anticipation to see what God would do. And as I think over it again, I'm not really sure what to say! How does one describe the joy of prison ministry? I think it is one of those things impossible for me to convey in words...a person almost has to experience it to know.

When sharing in our services, Dad often time uses the story of that Jesus told of the two debtors, the conclusion of the parable being that he who is forgiven much, loves much.

That passage of scripture often comes to mind as we minister in prisons. Those in prison that have been redeemed by the blood of the Lamb have such a "shoutin' victory" love for their Lord, that is unmatched by many.

Going into the prisons to minister is so humbling. Realizing that I could be in their shoes -- for I am a sinner, too. The men and women in prison are just like me, only a little more so. It is only by the grace of God that I am the ministering, and not being ministered to in like state. And what privilege it was to rejoice with the angels in heaven over a few more souls that had their names written down in that Lamb's book of Life.

Even though we were walking out of a prison last night, I couldn't help but say with the psalmist:

"Lord, I have loved the habitation of Your house,

And the place where Your glory dwells."

-Psalms 26:8

Thursday, August 23, 2007


For me, random posts seem to be the theme of this month.

This time my absence is due to our family helping at a family camp the past few days. The theme and emphasis for the families that came was "Equipping the family for ministry." God has called everyone to be His servant, and whether it seems large or small our desire is that we all will be faithful in that which He has called.

For one of the mother/daughter sessions I shared for twenty minutes on photography: a few simple tips to taking better pictures, as well as sharing how the Lord has opened doors for me to use it as a way to minister and bless others.

Remember: One doesn't set out to do great things.
You respond in obedience as God opens doors.
-Brother Andrew

But camp is over and I have arrived at one of the best places to be and I was greeted with hugs from some of the greatest people in the world. (I love you, Grandpa and Grandma!)

Now my fingers are pink from picking the biggest and best-est raspberries, my toes are muddy from going barefoot in the garden, and I will see my big brother in less than a week!

Random photo

Very, very, random

Friday, August 17, 2007

In training

Child, it is not as much what happens, but how we take it that is important. God is watching to see whether we allow the problems to defeat us, or whether we will go through them in His strength, being made stronger for the next problem and ultimately for the final end battle.

Everything that happens to us in life is training for the work we will do next.

-Corrie ten Boom

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Little screws and a big prayer

"My God is so BIG.
So strong and so mighty there's nothing my God cannot do..."

Several weeks ago I ordered a bracket and a few other accessories that I need for a wedding I will be photographing this fall. It was with much excitement that I received the package and opened it up. But much to my dismay, they had included everything but the screws! Somehow they had gotten left out. Now I have the problem of having all this fancy equipment to use and no screws that I might put it together and begin using it.

I began making phone calls this afternoon, and the company I had ordered from directed me to the sub-company that manufactures the particular bracket I ordered. Yes -- they'd ship the screws out at their cost, but if I wanted them to be here before our family leaves on a trip this Saturday, I'd have to pay the extra for priority mail.

Not wanting the extra hassle (yet wanting them very badly for this next trip!) I told him to go ahead and ship them normal mail. After saying goodbye and hanging up the phone, I said a quick prayer of "Lord, if there is any possible way, please let them get here before we leave on Saturday" then continued my daily chores.

I just now received an e-mail (through our family's ministry web page) from the man I talked on the phone with:

This message is for Bethany - I am not sure if you are the one that called about the screws not being in your bracket box but if so I wanted you to know that I shipped them to you today by priority mail. I know that I was not suppose to do that but something - now I know what it was - told me to send them to you so you would have them for your trip...

God bless you and your family as it looks like He already has. I have a son who is a Baptist preacher... Hope you and your family have a nice trip.

If you can't guess, I am ecstatic! I never would have guessed that God would answer my prayer so fast in such an amazing way!

The little screws are on there way, and my God is bigger than ever. Some might say it is just 'coincidental.' But I know better than that. I know where the glory is due.

My God is real. My God is big.

He takes down the walls of Jericho, even though they are big and tall.
He shuts the lions mouth's, especially when they try harming someone He delights in.
He sends a rainbow after the storm.
He sends me my screws when it isn't supposed to happen.

"Behold, the Lord's hand is not shortened, that it cannot save;
Nor His ear heavy, that it cannot hear."
Isaiah 59:1

Monday, August 13, 2007

The way of purity

When you chose to follow the way of purity, did you expect it to be easy? When you decided to wait for the best, did you think that waiting would be fun? Did you think that your faith would not be tested? When you decided to take the narrow way, did no one warn you that difficulties, hardships and tears would be part of the journey? And that you would often face rejection from others and be forced to walk alone?

My child, that which you wait for the longest you treasure the most, and through much struggle the prize is won.

Have ear; will listen

Saturday, August 11, 2007

1 Peter 2:7

To you who believe,
the Lord is precious.

Thank you, Lord, for Your mercy that is new every morning.

Thank you for the delights of seeing a baby's first steps, for giggles with little sisters, for having a big brother to miss, for the glory of Your Word, for Your ever ready forgiveness.

And Lord, though I see Your hand in all these things, I most of all praise You for Who You are. Truly -- You are precious.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Complete Abandonment

Few souls understand what God would accomplish in them if they were to abandon themselves unreservedly to Him and if they were to allow His grace to mold them accordingly.

- Ignatius

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

The reason for my absence

...from the blogging world -- except for a few random posts lately -- can be quite easily explained. (Or is it just me that has noticed I haven't done much blogging this month?!)

...piles of scrap fabric...
...literally hundreds of little two inch squares...
...pins galore...
...patience to match corners...and more corners...
all adds up to the beginnings of a Scrappy Irish Chain Quilt.

The moment I saw the pattern, I knew I wanted to make one. We have (excuse me, had) an over-flowing box of scraps of material from "I remember when we wore these singing outfits", or "this is material from the first dress I ever sewed", to "that fabric is in my quilt"; the list goes on and on of all the memories we have in fabric scraps. Then a few months ago we were given tubs and tubs of material: cute prints, old prints, bright prints, ugly prints, dark prints, plaids, dots, floral, stripes, pink, green, blue, red, brown, yellow, (and who knows what else!) all begging to be used.

In my spare moments I've been grabbing time to pin here and sew there, and it is slowly coming together. Yay for fabric scraps, sewing machines, and the ultimate scrap pattern ever!

Monday, August 06, 2007

What He sees

Every experience God gives us,
every person He puts in our lives,
is the perfect preparation for the future that only He can see.

-Corrie ten Boom

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Kneeling at His feet

Whether we praise Him for His unfathomable majesty or petition Him for daily needs,

prayer is the expression of our dependence upon God;

our whole-souled reliance upon
His power to sustain us,
His mercy to forgive us,
His bounty to supply us,
and His glory to overwhelm us as we reflect on WHO HE IS.

C. Samuel Storms