Wednesday Evening at The Local Coffee Shop

It’s been a long time since I’ve done one of these. But, since I’m sitting here on this cozy Wednesday evening with this dear friend of mine, I thought it high time.

Oh, what a joy it is to have this wonderful young lady in my life as one of my dearest friends. Love you, Larsie.

So, here we sit. Same coffee shop as all those old coffee shop posts, and it seems that not much has changed around here in the past couple years since I first started writing about it.

There’s a couple happily playing cards together across the room.

Over on the couch, a chappy with Very Cool dark-rimmed glasses has been playing on his phone for longer than I’ve been able to keep track of. He has his ear-buds in, and every so often he really gets into his music. But then he seems to catch himself, glance around to see if anyone noticed, and then go back to placidly scrolling around on his phone.

My homeless friend is still here. Actually, I can’t verify for sure that it’s the same one I ran into a couple years ago, but I like to think of all homeless people (and non-homeless people, for that matter) as my friends–so my initial statement of this paragraph is true, nonetheless. He was eating what appeared to be a cup of soup when we first arrived, and he’s now comfortably sacked out on the couch behind me, snoozing away in one of the few warm places he’s probably allowed to hang out for hours on end. I’m glad they let him stay and get comfortable and warm.

There’s a sweet friend across the table from me, as I mentioned earlier, and she’s editing photos for some articles she’s working on designing. She’s shown me a handful of them, and oh my! they’re wonderful! I had the privilege of taking her engagement photos earlier this week–much fun was had, and perhaps, just perhaps, I shall share a sneak peek or two here on the blog at some point. (If she lets me, of course. I won’t do the sappy ones, Lars… ;) )

And then there are the random folks studying, working on homework, chatting away comfortably in corners. Typical coffee-shop type stuff, you know.

Oh! Something has changed since I was last here! My super-cool friend, Abby, now works here part-time. I haven’t had the pleasure of seeing her at work, but . . . I’m determined to make it happen before too long! 

This evening has been one of peaceful studying and prayer. I’ve been doing a study on the purity of God, and I can’t even put it into words right now–I’m captivated with the One I call my King and Saviour. He is mighty and powerful, and He is pure. What a glorious truth! Perhaps once I have basked in and been submerged in the reality of the purity of God for awhile, I might be able to put some words to what I’ve been learning. For now, though? Oh, Jesus, how I love You!

If I were to spend every moment of every day for the rest of my life on this earth in the study and pursuit of God, I would never reach the end of His greatness. And yet, after even just one evening, I’m completely captivated and awe-struck. It makes me think–what a glorious place heaven must be! To be in the very near and tangible presence of the King of kings for eternity without end. To see Him, to know Him, to worship at His feet! What we know on this earth is just a bare taste of who He is–and yet, what a beautiful taste it is!

I can’t wait to know Him more and more!

Giveaway Wrap-up

That’s right, folks . . . the time has come!

. . .

. . .

I have had a blast reading all your comments all week–what a happy thing to read about the fun little tidbits that bring smiles to my friends’ days!

I wrote all your names out on little slips of paper, tossed them all in a basket and let them get acquainted with each other for awhile.

See? There you are, all getting to know each other and playing ice breaker games to lessen any possible awkwardness.

The basket full of your names sat on the desk here next to me for awhile while I did various other things. I had to wait for the proper moment to draw one out!

I tossed ’em all around, rustled ’em up, dumped ’em out, put ’em back in. Lifted the basket waaaay above my head and drew out a name.

So many fun people to send packages to . . .

Who was it to be?


Oh, how I excited I am! This lady is one of the loveliest people I’ve met. Truly–both inside and out. She’s a fantastic mama to the most adorable children, she’s ridiculously creative, her blog is beautiful and full of wisdom, and she and her husband are honestly one of my most favorite couples ever–their love for Jesus, those around them, and their willingness to give all for Him is a beautiful thing. Love them.

Clarita, be on the lookout for a wee package to show up on your doorstep with your name on it!
(I do need your address first, though, so email me?)

And now I shall return to my work and tea-sipping.

Keep your eyes peeled for the next giveaway–there’ll be more! :)

October 1st – giveaway!

To me, October 1st is one of the best days of the year.

…along with the 364 other days of the year.

(Yes, I’m one of those obnoxiously chipper people who think every single day is a wonderful day worth living and being excited about. Not because of what each day is or holds, but because of the God who created each one of those days. What blessedness is ours!)

And because it is October 1st today, I got the urge to send a fun autumn-y package to someone.

(Earlier today, I traipsed across campus–ok, so it was more of a slow waddle since I’m still recovering from surgery, but . . .details, details–with some apple turnovers and a “Happy October 1st!” note for some dear friends of mine in the dorm across the lawn. It inspired me to send a package, and the inspiration was not to be denied!)

The urge is not for any particular reason except the fact that I love sending fun autumn-y packages in the mail, and I am blessed with so many wonderful people to choose from!

Who shall it be?

I decided to narrow it down to the few readers of my paltry little corner of the internet world which has been collecting much dust lately.

Leave a comment and tell us what the best thing about today has been so far.

Perhaps you shall get a fun package in the mail!

Giveaway ends on October 8th, and the recipient shall be announced within a day or two thereafter. If your name is not drawn out of the pool of names, don’t worry–perhaps next time.

I so love sending packages in the mail!

*Disclaimer: The package will not contain a cozy orange kitten, unfortunately.

Rest in HIM

The Lord is teaching me to say with the Psalmist, “I delight to do Thy will,” instead of the usual, “Well, I supposed it’s the Lord’s will so we’ll just have to put up with it.”

Oh, the delirium of consciously being in the will of the Master–what joy! And this brings a knowledge of His presence and this affords rest.

“My presence shall go with thee, and I shall give thee rest.”

– The Shadow of the Almighty –

How can I love?

I boarded the plane for the last leg of my journey, excited to be done with a long day of traveling. Settling into my seat in the middle of the very last row of the plane, I eyed everyone coming down the aisle toward the back–which one was to be my seat-mate?

People trickled in and the seats filled up. Every seat on the plane was full. Before the doors of the airplane ever closed, I was already getting a little annoyed with a handful of the people in my general vicinity.

The seats directly in front of me were filled with two men who were buddies, and a girl who was merely assigned to the seat next to them.

The men were vulgar, crass, inappropriate to the girls around them, and generally just difficult to be around. A few exchanged glances with some of the people nearby confirmed that I was not the only one a little apprehensive about how this flight would be.

We taxied, took off, and headed for home. During the duration of the flight, these chaps drank a little too much and it only served enhanced their previous behaviour. I was getting more upset as time went by–specifically because of how they were treating the girl next to them, for the language that they were spilling all over plane, and just their general lack of dignity and manliness in general.

By the time we were descending, they were in full swing and one of them in particular had had enough to drink on the flight that he lost a good portion of it. All over the floor, himself, my bag, and the girl next to him.

I’ll just fast-forward here, and say that a good portion of the people who de-boarded that plane were pretty upset about everything that had happened on the whole flight. In an empty concourse on the way to the baggage claim, I had a run-in with the men which was of a nature that only made me (and them) more upset about the whole situation.

Tears spilled over as I called Dad and asked him to meet me at the top of the stairs rather than just waiting in the car–I wasn’t comfortable with the idea of being alone at the baggage claim with these guys who were now drunk and specifically upset at me (because of the previous run-in).

I’ve left out some details, but I wanted to give enough information for the rest of my post to make sense.

That night as I lay in bed, I was still crying and shaking with indignation at all that had happened. I was so upset, I couldn’t even think straight. I didn’t know what to think. I knew I needed to pray and take it to the Lord, but I didn’t even know how.

In the quietness of the middle of the night, the Lord spoke to me. Not verbally with words that I could hear, but softly to the deepest places of my heart.

“Oh, Jesus. I can’t. How do I love people like that? I know You do, but . . . they were so revolting! I can’t. I don’t want to.” The last words are a stab to my heart to even remember.

Then it struck me as never before. Their sin is not any more revolting in the eyes of the Lord than mine.

Oh, Jesus!

Somehow, I have had a gradient for sin. I didn’t think I did. I thought I loved people. I thought I desired for even the worst of the worst to know Jesus. But, then I was faced with a situation which made my flesh rise up so strongly–I did not love with the heart of Christ. I did not want to love.

Jesus loves. He is love. When we bear the name of Christ and live in Him and He in us, how can we not love?

The behaviour of such men is not to be loved or commended, but how can I despise a living soul who must one day face the judgement seat of Christ–possibly to be damned to everlasting hellfire? It was once I who was in such a position before the Lord–loved but lost. Participating in revolting sin. Dead even while I lived.

Jesus, forgive me! I, in my sin, am not somehow better or less despicable than those men because of so-called “lesser sins”. There is no such thing.

Grip the hearts of those men, Lord. Teach me to love. To forgive. Fill me with the fullness of who You are!

A Day to Laugh – link sharing!

Everyday is a good day to laugh, right? That’s my motto, anyway. I spend a lot of time laughing.

It’s also a good day to meet someone new and check out an exciting blog that’s just about to launch, right?

(hint: the answer is “yes”.)

Great! Let’s get started. (Ellerslie students, you will especially appreciate this)

In this one little link, you will:

  • come face-to-face with a great blog that is officially launching in just two days–sneak peek!!
  • (don’t forget to sign up for the quotes!!)
  • meet one of my fellow staff members at the ministry where I work
  • get insider information on some legends floating around out there
  • laugh

Who has an obsession with the paper products aisle at Target? Who has the loudest laugh in the land? Who never sleeps nor slumbers?

Well, I suggest you find out by popping on over to Nathan Johnson’s blog.

Don’t forget to sign up for the daily quotes! It’s seriously one of the best things to hit my email inbox each day.

His Little Feet

(the link to the sponsor page was the wrong one earlier…I fixed it now.)

I’ve written about them in the past, and they still grip my heart to this day.

It’s been a few weeks since our last international children’s choir went back to their countries. It was a heart-wrenching time of saying goodbye, but oh! what peace and joy came in knowing that each one of these precious hearts was in surrender to their King as they were being sent back into the world as shining lights of TRUTH!

I heard an update about them this past weekend, and tears welled up again. Oh, precious children, you will never be forgotten!

The choir this time was a group of children from Honduras and Ethiopia. Oh my . . . be still my heart. I’ve heard that one of the little girls from Ethiopia is back in her orphanage and spends all of her time ministering to those around her–staff, children, everyone she comes in contact with. This little girl has a precious heart of service and love for those around her. Oh, sweet girl!

Another is on fire for the Lord and hasn’t been able to stop telling everyone he meets there in Ethiopia about Him. It puts me to shame that I’m not that willing to tell those I meet about the One I claim means the most to me. Thank you for your devotion, passion, and surrender, dear young man–God has already used you in mighty ways!

Two brothers that came together have taken it upon themselves to teach their whole orphanage back in Ethiopia the whole song and dance routine from their concerts. They’re taking it very seriously and really pouring into these children’s lives. What precious hearts these young boys have!

What an honor to get to live on the same campus as these precious children each year. To love them, to hold them, to tuck them in at night and hear their prayers . . . to pour the love of Jesus into children from all over the world!

Not ten minutes ago, I signed up for the His Little Feet 5k Walk/Run to help raise money for this upcoming choir from India and Ethiopia. The staff at HLF have invited the students/staff/interns here at the Ellerslie campus to help them in raising a certain amount that they need to be able to bring in this next group of little ones. I have a page to help them raise this amount, and I’d love for you to be able to participate, too! If you’re local, you should definitely consider joining in on the actual 5k Run–much fellowship, laughter, water, singing, and fresh air is to be had in copious amounts. If you’re not local, there is an option on that page I just linked to to help sponsor a runner–me! …well, actually, I guarantee I will not be running. I will be walking. ;) …

I’ve never done anything like this on my blog before, but I so love the passion for the Lord that this ministry has the way the Lord is using them to touch the lives of hundreds of children and adults throughout the world. I’m friends with the directors of HLF, and their lives have deeply impacted mine and have constantly driven me to the feet of my Saviour. So honored to know them!
Again, please visit this link to donate and sponsor me as a runner/walker and reach out to these precious children!

His Little Feet Sponsor Donation Page

Strength Through Weakness

I don’t think I’ve talked much about the various health things I’ve dealt with throughout my life, and I’m not going to go in it much right now. But, I have had health issues in the past and I still do today. In some ways things have gotten better, and in some ways it seems like things get worse almost every day.

These health issues I’ve dealt with have been one of the biggest blessings of my life. And I’m not kidding when I say that. I’m not saying that merely because it’s a good, spiritual-sounding thing to say. I say it merely because it is true.

I am a strong-willed personality who doesn’t want to have anyone else go out of their way to do anything for me. I’d prefer to just be self-sufficient, and not bother anyone. I realized that this had carried over even into my relationship with the Lord. Ooooh, it cannot be. I refused to stand for it. I longed to be truly dependent on the Lord.

Well. That happened, praise the Lord! Pain and weakness have a way of knocking someone to their knees in desperation before the Lord, and it’s a sweet, sweet thing.

I know I still have an endless frontier of growth ahead of me in this area, but the way these health issues have come up throughout my life has been one of the best things that could happen to me. I am a weak, weak person with a God whose strength knows no bounds. Oh, glorious thought!

I have hard days, though. Days where I would love to be able to talk with someone else who knows exactly what it is like to live each day in pain, sometimes barely able to even get out of bed. I’d like to have someone in the same boat who can kick me where I need to be kicked and point me back to Jesus and tell me to stop wallowing in self-pity. I’d like to be able to encourage other people who are in the same sorts of situations.

So, the other day I was pondering some things and an idea came smashing into my thought processes. Hello.

I started a forum. Something I’ve never done before, but I’m really excited about it.

It is:

– a place for Christian folks who are dealing with (or have in the past) various health issues
– a place of encouragement and pointing each other to Christ
– a place to share tips and insights
– a place to share how we can be praying for each other
– a place where Christ-centered focus is a must

It is not:

– a place to wallow in discouragement
– a place to throw pity parties
– a place to try to garner pity from other members
– a place to diagnose peoples problems

If it veers off into any of the directions of the “not” category, it will be put to a stop. I won’t stand for it, and won’t be able to handle it. Who needs to go to a place where discouragement and self-pity reigns supreme? :P

So, all that to say….if you have dealt with health issues at any point in your life, I would love it if you would join our merry little group over at Strength Through Weakness. Come be encouraged. Come share and encourage. Come seek Jesus with us!


So, that last post I did?

I got this spam comment in response to it:


It frequently amazes me just how Blog owners for example yourself can find the time plus the commitment to carry on creating superb blog posts. Your latest blog is wonderful and one of my need-to-read posts, and I was more than pleased with the post on Across Fields. I simply want to say thanks and also well done. Kind regards.”

Huh. Who knew that a post that says. “Um…hi?” could be so meaningful to someone. :P

In other news, yes, I know that I’ve taken a rather long an unannounced hiatus from writing on this little corner of the interwebs. I’m sorry I left you hanging, but I’m not sorry I took the break!

A lot has happened since last time I did a real post here, and I’m not going to go into all of it, but…suffice it to say things are crazy, and huge, and wonderful, and always changing.

Jesus Christ, though, is the SAME yesterday, today, and forever. He never changes! What a glorious thing to grasp hold of and live as though we believe it. The God of the Bible is the same God we serve today. Amen? Amen!