The Power of Christ in Community

“You always seem to have it all together…”

How many of you have ever been told that, or said that to someone? I’ve had it both ways. I’m sure many of you have as well. As I sit here now, enjoying the sun shining above me warming my shoulders, listening to the sounds of lawn mowers, hammers, tractors and planters, and tiny voices of innocent children (well, they are innocently playing in the sand right now however, this could change any moment!) I am ignoring not having it all together. Because sometimes, I must do that in order to be still in God’s presence. As I lay my baby down for a nap, I had a list of to-do’s I was ready to tackle. Not one of them was to simply enjoy God’s beauty. So as I began to tackle that never-ending to-do list, I felt the oh-so-familiar conviction to ignore those distractions, and share what God put on my heart. So as I write, I only pray this may encourage someone, as I know I’ve been encouraged. Set aside that to-do list for just a few moments…

When I think back to over five years ago, when my husband and I were really looking at what it meant to “build health” I remember thinking…

“Wow, so and so really knows what they are doing. They have it all together.”

I felt overwhelmed and often defeated. I longed for encouragement and empowerment in this journey of growing a healthy family.

Being “healthy” isn’t always easy. But to us, it’s important. So we pray for wisdom, learn from mistakes, commit, and encourage others along the way. We are thankful for Grace! And to be honest, we love our lifestyle! I love growing my knowledge in health. I love the way we feel. I love teaching my children about our body and sharing how the food that God gave us feeds us in a special way. I love all of this. But I have to say, I mostly love the community of like-minded people we are surrounded by, to encourage and be encouraged along the way.

So my dream has been to create a strong community so others feel the peace in healthy living that we do. To use this community of like-minded people, to impact lives everywhere, to be part of the change to better health. And, to glorify Christ each step of the way.

Weaving Christ into our Hearts our Health and our Happiness.

Health Revival cover

Many of you attended or perhaps heard about our recent Health Revival. (Some of you, maybe not!) This was an opportunity for some of our Power Partners to join forces and create a community and support system for others who want to grow in their health. It’s interesting as I sit here and write this, because it was exactly one year ago today, that God first started changing my vision, my dreams. Giving me a conviction that only comes from the Holy Spirit.

A lot of work went into planning this Health Revival; Bold prayers, strong women working together, ups and downs, excitement, fear…you name it, we probably experienced it. I’ll even share that at one point (after some shifts in planning) we even considered cancelling it.

Talk about the enemy cheering for that!

James 4:7 Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.

 But guess what, we didn’t cancel! We instead, prayed. Our prayer warriors prayed. (Kori and Harper, I especially can’t thank you enough for your amazing support and outpouring of love during that moment when I asked for bold prayers. I really can’t even express the rush of emotion that God moved me with. Thank you.) We prayed that God’s plan continue to be accelerated. We prayed that God lay His hand on this event and bless it in the way He wanted.

1 Corinthians 15:58 Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.

Fast forward to the week of the event. Wow. God is so faithful. Everything came together just perfectly. (Brooke, Stephanie, Rebecca, Sandi, thank you so much for your hard work! Seriously, you’re a complete Godsend!) We were on fire and ready to share health!

So what was I hoping for in this event? Love to be shared and felt. The main things that I’ve felt called to do over this past year is to

LEAD, EMPOWER, AND ENCOURAGE

So that’s exactly what I was looking at for this event; to lead, empower, and encourage others in their walk through health. We wanted to encourage in not only physical health, but emotional and spiritual as well.

As I look back, I know that some of those very things were accomplished. Was it everything I envisioned…no, it was more! People have reached out and shared what they gained from the event, that they can’t wait until the next Health Revival, that they are ready to COMMIT to increasing their knowledge in health and COMMIT to making small changes. Cheers! Success! Thank you, God.

What I didn’t expect was the abundance of hope, peace, joy, thankfulness, empowerment, encouragement, and love. Yes, right now I’m talking about my own feelings. At the end of Saturday, May 21 (our Health Revival), I sat down to praise God in my journal. I hadn’t had a quiet moment for a few hours after the revival to really reflect. I ran through the presentation, the expressions on the faces, the amazing women who joined in the event to not only grow in their own health journey, but to show support to our dream. (I can’t thank those of you who attended enough!) I thought about what I liked and what I would change next time. But I was led to shift my thinking and I then thought about all the phone calls and text messages that dear friends sent that day. Prayers left on voicemail. Encouraging cards sent. I couldn’t hold back the tears. While my focus was to encourage others, I couldn’t praise God enough for the encouragement that He gave me through others. While I was working so hard to form a community, I realized…I’m in a community! While I worked hard to be a blessing for others…I was blessed. When I focused on glorifying Him in the event…HE WAS INDEED GLORIFIED!

Luke 6:38 Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.”

It’s so amazing how God uses our focus on Him, our walk in obedience, and our service, to bless us in ways that (I didn’t) we may not even envision. Wow, God is Great!

As I flip through my journal over this past year, starting with one year ago today, I see God’s faithfulness and I’m moved beyond words. He is truth. He is faithful. He is the way. My passion is Christ, my family, and building a community for health. I want to lead, empower, and encourage others in this journey of life. What’s yours? He will be faithful in your God-given gifts. You don’t have to have it all together. Trust me, I don’t! I fail day in and day out. But, God is faithful. He is full of Grace, and full of Love. So won’t you join this community of Christ seekers, Christ followers? We never have to have it all together to be accepted by Him!

Faithful Obedience

Shaking hands.

Quivering words.

Overflowing heart.

Excited soul.

That begins to sum up how I feel when I try to be obedient in Christ…

Many people have asked me why I’m so passionate about my journey. People have asked how my life has shifted to where it is today. Some people have no idea anything about my life, and maybe want to keep it that way 😉 I am in awe at how God has placed each stepping stone for where He has me today. I wanted to share a bit about this journey, and how Power Partners came to be.

Faithful obedience

A few years ago, while I was a full-time high school biology teacher, I started to feel my heartstrings being pulled a bit. This was the first time I felt such a strong “calling” if you will. I started to have a strong desire to stay at home with my babies. Financially, this was not a reality, but spiritually, I had such a peace about being faithful and trusting God. So, I prayed. I prayed like I’ve never prayed before. I wrote prayer petitions, and had loved ones sign them and pray over them with me. I didn’t stop praying. I began to have an excitement like never before, because God started providing abundantly.

First vision; Start sharing Shaklee. This is when I saw that having a Shaklee business was my vehicle to stay home with my babies. Now, for anyone who knows me well, I’m not necessarily business savvy. I actually had no idea at the time, what it would take to have a health business. But I knew one thing…God brought this passion to me and made it alive in my heart. I trusted that He would pave the way. I also knew that I have a passion to educate others, and a passion to help others. I’ve been this way my entire life. I felt this was such a perfect combo, given our family had been experiencing great health with Shaklee!

Fast forward a few months and I was able to resign my position as a teacher, all Glory to God. This was no easy decision to make alone, because I truly loved my job and the community I worked in. But again, God put such a peace in my heart, and I knew that I was being obedient. I was finally going to be able to be with my sweet kiddos all day!

Over the next year I continued to grow our Shaklee business. I loved every minute of it because hundreds of lives were changing.   People would call me in tears because their health was improving; therefore their life was improving. I was also meeting some pretty amazing people who have become dear friends. I was also blown away at how God was providing for us financially, as I began staying home with our children. I was living the dreams God put in my heart, and I still can’t praise Him enough for His goodness in it all. I began to have even bigger dreams, and felt I was to do even more with this journey, for His Glory.

Next vision; Grow a team to have a bigger effect on this community. It’s really funny how God works, isn’t it? I started having such a desire to grow a team of people who wanted to do what I was doing. I started feeling how much fun it would be to brainstorm ways to change more and more lives with other passionate people. I knew that the power of a team was much more powerful than myself alone. I knew that the team needed God as our focus, and prayer as our power. Guess what happened…I prayed. I prayed like I’ve never prayed before. And, God provided. He started growing our team like I truly couldn’t believe. And you know what, it is fun! It’s amazing at the ideas that come when like-minded people have a passion and are on a mission!

Oh and here we go…another vision…This one however, I still can’t put into words, because I’m not even sure what His will is in this. But I do know one thing. I’m praying. I’m praying like I’ve never prayed before. I’m praying boldly that God will use me to Glorify Him. I’m praying to be obedient. I’m praying for courage because to be honest, I’m doing a lot of things that terrify me. (Starting a blog for example).

 I still remember the day that God shook me. He shook me hard. The house was empty; I had planned some serious prayer time because I was feeling like I needed some alone time with God. I have never felt as energized, as excited, as hopeful, but at the same time as confused as I did that day. I felt an excitement that was indescribable. My passion to be obedient to the unknown is unexplainable. I still can’t express what I feel God is doing, and perhaps it’s because I truly don’t know! I just feel so much desire to be bold. To be courageous. To step out in total faith. And I feel so at peace doing so.

 “We walk by faith not by sight.” 2 Corinthians 5:7.

So here we are, in the present, and I’m sharing our journey. This is how Power Partners has come to be. By God’s Grace; with my passion for the Lord, my passion for health, and my passion for a happy heart, I’m leading and growing this team to help others Weave Christ into our Hearts, our Health, and our Happiness. We hope to help others grow closer to Christ, help achieve optimum health, and have an overwhelming feeling of happiness that can only come from God. By doing these things, we believe we can be well, feel great, and live fully.  I feel God launched our Shaklee business to help develop my platform, my courage for outreach. He has used this opportunity to unite so many of us with similar passions and a love of Christ. I’m in complete awe at his magnificent plan. I know He is doing bigger and better things than I can ever imagine…and all to Glorify Him!!!!

God has transformed what I thought to be “my vehicle” into what He knows is His bigger plan.

The enemy doesn’t like this. He attacks really hard. There have been peaks and valleys, as one would expect. He attacks my thinking, my relationships, my passion, my focus. I often question everything and feel pretty darn inadequate. (The enemy laughs at that!) But God is igniting all of these things far more than the enemy can attack. I must “put on the full armor of God, so that I can take stand against the devil’s schemes.” Ephesians 6:11

Hebrews 13:21 reminds me that “He will equip you with everything good for doing His will, and may He work in us what is pleasing to Him, through Jesus Christ…”

It’s a spiritual warfare, and God is fighting for me, so that I can shine for Him and with Him!

Deuteronomy 20:4 “for the Lord your God is the one who goes with you, to fight for you against your enemies, to save you.”

When I reflect back almost 6 years ago, I had nothing like this life on my radar. Thank goodness God gives me the desires of my heart, Psalm 37:4, because my own desires are so small compared to God’s plan for my life.

I’m praying to be Faithfully Obedient. I’m praying. I’m praying like I’ve never prayed before, and this time; I’m stepping out in bigger faith than ever before. I will be obedient, and I only want to Glorify Him. I want to ask and thank each of you for praying alongside me. I truly thank you for your support in this journey!

 

Joy in My Reflection

Joy is our family’s word of the year. We choose Joy. Yes, easy to say, and easy to “do”, but sometimes it’s not so easy to “feel”…at least for me.

As I write out my prayer this evening, to my Heavenly Father, I pray that I feel joy in my reflection. And I also pray that He be glorified through this prayer, and this post.

Heavenly Father, I come to you today. I want to praise you for your beautiful gifts. The flowers are blooming, the birds are chirping, spring is so near. What a glorious day. Lord I come to you at the end of the day, at the end of an exhausting day. A day where I don’t feel very joyful, and really I should be more than joyful. Lord, I ask for forgiveness in my moments of sin, for my moments of weakness. Oh precious Father, I praise you for your Grace. Lord I pray you shine through me, so that all glorifies you. I come to you this evening and want to share my thoughts, my moments, with others. I pray you lift me up, so that I can shine for you.

As I reflect on today, as I do at the “end” of most days, Lord, today I feel guilty.

Joy. Joy is our word, yet today, I didn’t do well at choosing joy. It’s so hard. So much seems to pile up Lord. The baby only slept 40 minutes all day. Nick has worked countless days and nights, and I don’t remember the last time he had a full day off. I can’t seem to get my house clean. I didn’t play with the big boys but for a few moments today. Am I pouring enough love into them? I feel over-committed in some aspects of my day. Lord, I haven’t had restful sleep in over a year. Why am I complaining, I am so blessed??? Lord, how can I be better for you? Lord, my heart is heavy for friends that are hurting. Heavenly father, who am I letting down today? Why is the enemy attacking so hard? Why don’t I enjoy each and every moment, because I know time is moving by so quickly? Lord, why are the days so long, yet the years so fast? Precious Father, am I following your path for my life?? Lord, how can you use me when I’m a mess myself?

I want to go back through these moments where I was feeling attacked, where I didn’t choose joy well. I want to choose joy now, Joy in my Reflection.

reflection

Lord, thank you for the trust you have in me to raise these children.

Lord, thank you for a husband who will literally do anything to provide for his family. Who works without grumbling, and who comes home with open arms to do anything he can to make my day easier. Wow, how did I get so lucky?

Lord, thank you for this house. Thank you for the laundry that clothes us, for the toys that entertain us, and for the mess that my children really don’t mind one bit. Lord I know I like a clean house, but thank you for the reminder at the end of the day, that I was able to clean one full room, and with a toddling baby right at my feet singing along with my “wanna-be” singing voice.

Lord, thank you for the memories of hiding Easter eggs in the neighbor’s yard, for our short dance party, for baseball chatter all day, and for a pretty competitive game of “war” tonight. Lord, thank you for the countless hugs, kisses, “I love you’s”, and baby rocking moments.

Lord, thank you for a child that loves me so much, he wants to be near me often. Thank you for this precious baby that is fully dependent on me, and I’m able to provide for him, because of you. Thank you for amazing health in spite of little sleep; for the supplements that work hard to keep me going strong, and for being by my side, even when I don’t recognize it.

Lord, thank you for a strong community of friends and family who remind me of your truth each and every day. For their encouraging conversations whether it be phone call, text, or in person. I couldn’t do life without so many wonderful people pouring into me…and they don’t even know it.

Lord, thank you for the roles you’ve entrusted me with; Wife, Mother, Homeschooling mom, Friend, Shaklee leader and business owner, Ministry partner…I only seek you in all I do to glorify you. I pray I follow the paths you have laid out for me.

Lord thank you for your Grace, when I fall flat on my face.

Thank you for the imperfect progress…for your holy hedge of protection around me…for fighting my battles for me…for paving the way…for working in ALL things…for loving me when I’m so broken.

Heavenly Father, I am sorry that I don’t trust you more in the messy moments. To be honest, sometimes I just don’t know how. But in my reflection, I see you in all things. I FEEL you in all things, and I choose joy in all things. Lord, choosing joy doesn’t mean that everything is perfect…it’s looking past all these imperfections and still choosing joy…even if it’s in my reflection.

I’m so thankful that God reminds me of the good, because at the end of the day, I made it, and all my babies went to bed happy. My husband has had a break in his workday to kiss on the kids, and to make me feel calm. Tomorrow will bring new challenges, but I’m refreshed, and God is working in me and through me. While I will continue to (work to) choose joy, and to choose joy in the moments, I will also be ok with Joy in my Reflection.

 

 

 

 

 

Can We Rewrite Our Story?

What if we rewrote our story? Perhaps through the eyes of a child…

My oldest is very comfortable at home. He likes to hang out with family. He’s very shy, and isn’t a big fan of big crowds. An introvert to some degree. Since we home school, he isn’t away from home alone, very often. One evening a week, he goes to a friends’ church for a church program, without mom or dad…

What may seem so simple to some, this is a challenge for him. Now, he is excited for 6 days, then the day comes to be gone for evening church, and he gets anxious. His emotions are up and down…”I want to go…Oh gosh, I don’t know if I can do it, maybe I should stay home, will I be ok? Ok I want to go!”

I want to build him up. I want to help him grow in confidence.

It’s precious and heartbreaking for me to see, obviously because I hurt for him, but also because I know these insecurities all too well.

My insecurities aren’t in the same context however. I’m quite the opposite; a social butterfly if you will. You say go, I say where. But on the inside, I am often filled with fear…in other areas. My confidence perhaps, or simply my weakness and brokenness before Christ.

Am I really giving this to God?

How am I going to handle all that’s on my plate today?

How do others seem to have it all together?

Does God hear my cry?

Lord, I’m sorry for losing my temper. Will I ever change?

Oh, how I long to be closer to Christ…

When it’s time for my son to leave, we have found some ways to help him feel safe, secure. We have found that by drawing a cross and a heart on the inside of his wrist, he changes his thinking. He is reminded that God is always there (by the cross), always with him. The heart reminds him how much mommy and daddy love him.

FullSizeRender

Can I tell you how those two small symbols have changed my little guy so much? He will still have a change in emotions throughout the day, however he remembers the cross and love, and he has peace.

Children are a blessing from the Lord, and in so many ways. Oh, how we can learn from our children!

What if we rewrote our own story, and through the eyes of a child? We have the cross. The reminder. The love of Christ, our Heavenly Father. And doesn’t that awaken us?

As I look at my own insecurities, my own fears, I am reminded of the cross. What a peace that brings. By this reminder, I can rewrite my own story. While I look at some of my fears, they are so minute when looking at the full picture of Christ plans for us. But that doesn’t lessen them to me, or lessen them in the moment. How many of you can relate? But what I have found, is I too, can change my thinking, my heart. Instead of questioning out of fear, I speak truth. I hand it over to Christ. I sit in the stillness of our Heavenly Father, and breathe in His truth from the Word.

I give this to God.  Romans 12:2 Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by  the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.

I can do all things through Him.  Phil 4:13 I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

Comparison is the thief of joy.  Galatians 6:4-5 Each one should test their own actions. Then they can take pride in themselves alone, without comparing themselves to someone else.

The Lord hears me.  Deuteronomy 31:6 Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.

I am forgiven.  Psalm 103:8 I follow the example of the Lord, who is merciful and gracious, slow to anger and plenteous in mercy and loving-kindness.

He is in my heart; I seek Him in all I do.  I am growing and becoming strong in spirit, filled with wisdom; and the grace of God is upon me.

 I am so broken. Without the Grace of God, I am nothing.

I will always seek Him. I will always need Him.

I will always be thankful for Him.

How can you rewrite your own story? And how can we do that through the eyes of an innocent child? Simplified. Genuine. Loving. Honest.

Just last night, my son went to his church class. When he got home, I asked about his evening, and I asked about his cross and heart. He said he didn’t even have to look at it, because he already knows God is in his heart, and he feels Him there. Simplified. Genuine. Loving. Honest.

I encourage you today, to think about your thoughts. How can we turn those to Christ, and how can we speak truth instead of fear?

Stepping into the Arms

Yay!

You can do it!

Come on, my child!

Way to go!

Oops, that’s ok. Try again!

I’m right here!

 Why am I saying all these things lately? Well, my baby is learning to walk. It really does seem like just yesterday he was born. And now, he stands, arms out, big smile, and takes a step.

I cheer and cheer for him, and boom! He falls. But right back up he stands, and ready to try again. Oops, another fall, and the cycle continues.

Progress is made, and each time, I am there cheering for him, waiting for him, catching him when he falls, and helping him get back up.

Does this sound familiar to anyone else, only perhaps in a different scenario? How about our walk with Christ? Me, me! Isn’t this just how our Father loves us?

As I’ve been cheering for my baby, I’ve also been feeling the Holy Spirit nudge me…harder and harder. You see, I’ve felt led for months to start writing. Now, I’ve never seen myself as a writer. It isn’t something that I’ve found myself gifted in or really even called to do…until recently.

 “But God, I don’t know HOW to write.”

“But God, I don’t know WHAT to say.”

“But God, what will PEOPLE say??”

His scripture speaks truth to my fears.

Hebrews 13:5-6, 21

“…I will never fail you. I will never abandon you…The Lord is my helper, so I will have no fear. What can mere people do to me?

“…May he equip you with all you need for doing his will. May he produce in you through the power of Jesus Christ every good thing that is pleasing to him. All glory to him forever and ever! Amen.”

 While I may not FEEL like a writer, or may be very new to blogging, God wants to use me. He uses me in ways I never imagined possible. How can I say NO to that?

Well, I have been. I’ve been delaying and delaying because I don’t want to fall. But then I’m reminded that HE IS THERE! He is there cheering.

 

Yay!

You can do it!

Come on, my child!

Way to go!

Oops, that’s ok. Try again!

I’m right here!

 

How many of you feel that nudge? Perhaps you feel like God is calling YOU to be courageous. How does He want to use you? Isn’t that exciting!

God has given us all gifts. He designed us exactly how HE wants us. Let’s be who He wants us to be! Let’s be the light. Let’s show love. Let’s glorify Him! We don’t have to have all the answers, when we have Christ.

I have a passion for encouraging others in their walk with Christ, their journey to great health and their overall happiness. While I am not perfect, I’m excellent in my Father’s eyes.

And, with Him cheering for me and holding out His hand, I’m ready to take the next step!  I choose to be obedient and to trust the path that He is guiding me through. I know He will catch me when I fall, and be there cheering for me over and over again. Taking baby steps

Hand