Thursday, August 28, 2014

::this summer::

I have not done a {weekly} update since June.  I took the summer off to re-focus and to be more present in what I was doing.  I'm now ready to return to writing regular updates again (just haven't decided yet if they are going to be weekly or monthly).  
This summer was wonderful... busy, but really good.  
Jeremy did some traveling and speaking.  He was also on the radio and a podcast.  We did some traveling as a family to Lafyette and Virginia.  Jeremy and I had a few day trip to the beach.  And we all had a lot of fun.
We started a monthly community group, I continued with the monthly ladies book club that I organize,  I started a facebook NOLA parenting and play date page and coordinated several mom and kiddo events. (as always, anyone interested is welcome to any of these events).
There is a lot that we have been working on that will be coming out in the upcoming months/ year...  Jeremy has been working on a short ebook on rest.  He is also in the process of writing his next book, sort of a follow-up to The Longest Bridge Across Water.  I have a business project that I have been working on.  Jeremy has a new website that should be completed and public soon.  Jeremy has a few more traveling and speaking engagements this year including Monroe LA, Columbus OH, and India.  Jeremy and two other friends of ours are in the beginning stages of planning a conference in New Orleans for early 2015.  And more.
I could not possibly fit an entire summer of experiences and revelation into one blog post, so I'll try to summarize and highlight some of what has stood out to me the most...


in awe at just how good, faithful and loving God is.  so much more than I can imagine.  in awe at His creation... at nature... at people.  at how intricately, beautifully and powerfully we were created.  in awe of how He designed our bodies to heal themselves... when we get a cut, it heals... how stinkin' cool and crazy is that?!

all of the open doors and opportunities that God has given us this summer.
some really cool feedback and testimonies of how God has worked in people's lives through The Longest Bridge Across Water.  


for provision... we could really use some additional monthly donors and/or one time gifts for Bastion Ministries.
for clarity and our path to be made straight regarding church... we have been visiting a few churches looking for a church home to connect with and pondering and discussing the purpose and meaning of church altogether.

with a heavy heart for the needs and hurts of several friends who are suffering through some really tough things right now.


Genesis, Romans, 1 Corinthians, Acts, Luke, An Everlasting Meal, Organized Simplicity, Living Room Revolution

thankful for:

our summer.  time with family.  time with friends.  time away.  fun activities.  relaxed time.
our city and house.  we really do love where we live.  we love so much about this city, and about our neighborhood.  I'm so grateful to be somewhere that is so diverse, beautiful and historically rich.
all of our trips and travels and the bonds and memories that were made along the way.
all of the interesting and unlikely people we've met this summer, and friendships that were made.

cooking: {this week, I could not fit an entire summer here}

huevos rancheros,  whole wheat pizza with turkey pepperoni and jalapenos, vietnamese noodle bowls, chicken sausage on buns with sauteed onions and peppers, sriracha lime brussell sprouts, maple roasted carrots, banana chocolate chip muffins, lime bars, mango smoothies

creating: {this week}

some appliqued onesie baby gifts, some felt mask kiddo gifts, baby shower decorations

doing: {this week}

this week we celebrated our 7 year wedding anniversary.  it was absolutely perfect!  we had 24 hours without the kiddos and really enjoyed our time together.  we really do enjoy our regular everyday life, so we did very normal things and enjoyed all of the uninterrupted time together doing them.  we got to go pray for a lady together, spend some time restin with God at J's office, went to the gym, went to coffee and discussed the book J is working on, I got to read the book on rest he has almost finished, a yummy sushi dinner, and then a movie and some froyo on our couch.  very simple, and I wouldn't change a thing.  we have had anniversaries where we spend a bunch of money, stayed in a hotel, did the tourist thing and had a super fancy dinner... but it's just not us.  it's good to know who you are as an individual and a couple and live from there.
in addition to that we have a few dinners with friends, kiddo playdates, and our regular weekly activities of the group in Slidell that J does and my weekly ladies Bible study.


there are a few main themes and specific things that the Lord has been teaching me/ telling me this summer;

  • persevere- through a passage in Mark and some circumstances in life God was telling me to persevere.  I didn't really understand it, and then I realized that due to some hurt feelings and fear I was unknowingly withdrawing from a lot of things... things that I enjoy, things that give me life, things that I'm sure are His will and purpose for me.  and since I've returned to walking by faith and not fear I feel more like me, more like who I was created to be.  and so I'm learning to persevere when things get tough.
  • as I mentioned in the prayer section, I've been pondering what church is... what it was in the book of Acts vs what it is now.  pondering why and what God's design for it is.  pondering what church looks like for Jeremy and me in this season of life.
  • expect- this was the one word that God laid on my heart for this year.  last year was believe and this year He is building on that and taking me a step further.  last year He was teaching me to believe for greater things, to believe for miraculous things, to believe that He would speak and reveal Himself to me.  this year I am now learning not just to believe for those things but to expect it.  to not just hope and believe that God can do something, but to expect Him to.
  • enjoy- this has been another huge lesson He has been teaching me over the last year.  God has been taking me out of a sterile and mechanical relationship with Himself and showing me just how good He is.  teaching me that relationship is not about obligation, but love and enjoyment.  taking me from reading my Bible and pursuing Him out of duty to doing it from an overflow of joy and pleasure in Him.
  • how so many people that I know express discontentment with their friendships.  I hear an overwhelming sense that people are longing and looking for deep connections with others and community, but are continually coming up short.  why is this?  are we too busy?  do we not know how to connect anymore?  are there more barriers to connectivity than in the past?
  • rest- Jeremy and I talk about rest a lot.  it's a big theme for us and has provided huge breakthrough in our relationship with God.  learning how to take our thoughts captive and turn down the noise of the world and rest in our oneness with God, in His presence in us.  and then learning how to carry the rest that we experience in our intimate time with God over into the chaos that can be daily life.  Jeremy said something to me recently that I can't get out of my mind... he suggested that perhaps why it is so common for people to receive revelation or dreams from God at night is that that is the only time that we are still and our minds are quiet enough for us to actually listen and hear Him.  perhaps He is constantly trying to speak to us but we don't often slow down enough to realize it.  I've been thinking a lot on that statement.  after some good quiet and still time resting with God this week I was extremely renewed by an awareness of Him and these song lyrics by Catherine Mullins became so real to me "in your presence, Jesus, every insecurity fades away...".  it is so true... I sat down to enjoy God feeling a little frazzled, distracted, bitter and more but by simply meditating on Him and who He is in me all of those feelings melted away and He replaced them with His all consuming peace and joy.  it is that easy y'all!  stop trying, stop doing and simply relax into Him.  another song stood out to me this week (by Steffany Gretzinger) illustrating this point; "I'm letting go, falling into you".  that's the perfect verbal illustration for rest, we let go of striving and working and fall into God.
I hope that your summer was fun and relaxed, full of laughter and love, lived from a place of awareness of God in and through all things.

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