Thursday, March 28, 2013

Brokenness Pt. 1: Facing Our Brokenness

I have a couple questions for you.
What do you do with your brokenness?
Where do you go with your brokenness?

Everyone is broken. Everyone has unmet longings, unfulfilled desires. Everyone has deep disappointment and unanswered confusion. Everyone is broken. But not everyone realizes it. Or owns up to it. Or sits still long enough to really allow themselves to think about it (this girl right here).

So. What do you do with your brokenness? Where do you go with your brokenness? Do you deny it? Do you despair and wallow in it? Do you compare it to others'?

Brokenness can usher us into God's presence, if we let it. There is a well-worn path in our brains that leads to destruction and lies. It is a path that we often follow when we actually do acknowledge our brokenness. It's a path that tells us we aren't good enough, there must be something wrong with us. It is a path that leads to shame, condemnation, depression, anxiety, and death.

We have to ask God to help us make a well-worn path that leads to Him. A new path- a path that brings hope, illuminates truth, and strengthens our faith. A path that leads to life.

Jesus can handle the depth of my mess. In fact, He turns my mess into a message. I can say this with joy and confidence, because I have seen it a million times in my own life. I have seen Jesus take the things I hate the most- the deepest sin, the hardest circumstances, the most shameful choices- and turn them into stories of hope, redemption, and ultimately His love for me.

In facing my brokenness, I acknowledge that I am weak, but God is strong. I acknowledge that I am a sinner in need of a Savior, one who died and rose again, conquering death for me. I acknowledge that I cannot do this life on my own, that I am utterly dependent on the power of the Holy Spirit in me.

And in the midst of all of this, I am becoming someone new. There is new life springing up from the ground (Isaiah 43:19). Yes, in this life there is still pain. There are still tears and disappointment, confusion, and unanswered questions. BUT, I know that my God is greater and that it is all for His glory and my good. There is trust for today and hope for the future.

He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away. And he who was seated on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.” -- Revelation 21:4-5

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Three-Tiered Stand DIY

I have a super simple, super cheap, and super cute DIY for you! It's a three-tiered stand that you can use in your bathroom, kitchen, or wherever to help organize all those little odds-and-ends.

I got the plates and candlesticks at Savers... all for under $5! (Hint: Savers is 25% off everything on Mondays!) The project itself probably took me 10-15 minutes. So like I said. 

Super simple. Super cheap.

Here's what you need:

Candlesticks. Plates of varying sizes. Some sort of hard-core glue. (I used gorilla, but super glue would work too!)

I've included pictures of each step, and I think each is pretty self explanatory! Enjoy!

Step One.

Step Two.

Step Three.

Step Four.


Now go out there and get crafty! 

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Guest Post: Love God and Do as You Please

Editor's Note: Jenny Tokheim currently lives in Spain where she is part of a program called G42 Leadership Academy. She gets to look at the Mediterranean Sea all the time (that's what I gather from her Facebook photos) and grow and learn and hang out with really sweet people. I met Jenny when I spent the summer after my freshman year serving alongside with her with an organization called TeenServe. In the past four years, she has been an immense encouragement to me and my walk with Jesus. Jenny blogs over at Jenny4Jesus, where she has tons of neat ponderings, poems, and photos... check it out for more about her life in Spain! - HB

Love God and Do as You Please

When HB asked me to write a little ditty for her lovely blog, I wasn’t quite sure which direction to run in. I like to share about what Jesus is up to in this heart and mind of mine, but honestly, God has been shaping me in such crazy ways in this current season that I don’t recognize myself from week to week. It is a good thing to be shaped by the love of God.

I’m in a season of life and a place where Kingdom dreams get hashed out and brought to life, and in the spirit of that dreaming and planning, I wanted to issue a little challenge. It isn’t going to be long, at least in print, but if you really take some time and search that heart of yours, I think you’ll find some hidden [or not so hidden] treasure.

Over the past year, a quote from St. Augustine has been brought up numerous times, and I believe it’s worth some consideration. It’s seemingly a bit controversial, but I don’t believe it has to be too complicated.

“Love God and do as you please.”

Now that’s a loaded statement. Set aside what you think you know for a moment. Take a deep breath.

What if God has placed, in that very heart of yours, a Kingdom dream, a Kingdom purpose for His glory that would cause your heart to jump up and down with excitement? What if the outcome of your life with God was not only full of holiness, but also really exciting?

Friend, here’s the challenge:

Ask Him. Ask Him how He’s made you. Search that heart of yours that longs to serve Him, and I think you’ll find a beautiful dream for His glory. Reading this blog posting of mine won’t change your life, friend, but interacting and dreaming with the Living God certainly will. You can take my word for it.

So go! Right now! Pull out some paper and a pen, go for a walk, start playing some tunes---do whatever it is you do to meet with God, and ask Him to show you what, “Love God and do as you please,” means in your own life. Perhaps He’s given you a passion that you never thought was “spiritual enough” to be used for His glory. Maybe you’ve forgotten a part of your heart’s cry in order to be successful or accepted. Or, maybe you just need to be encouraged by the truth that God cares about that heart of yours.

Enjoy Him and this life He’s given you!

Joyfully His,

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Music too good NOT to share

Because I love you all so much, I am telling you- check this out. FREE music. And it's good too! :) This group is giving away all their albums in the month of March... which includes ELEVEN albums! A bunch of their albums are hymns that are re-done. So legit. Here's a taste.

Click here to sign up for the free download!

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Dells Or Bust!

Can I just say how stinkin' excited I am for this summer?!

Yes, it will be warm, and sunny, and snow-less. But what I'm really looking forward to is spending the summer in the Wisconsin Dells with 50 college students and 6 other Nav Staff for our Summer Training Program. So, if we haven't talked lately, or you just need a little life update, you can play catch-up here:

Basically, I'll be moving to the Dells for a couple months [mid May through the end of July]. During this time I will be equipping students in discipleship and leadership training, reaching out to the many international students that come to the Dells every summer, and helping the program run smoothly. I'm not really sure what my summer will look like... except that I know that where 2 or 3 [or 50-some!] are gathered in His name, God is there. And I know that when young people gather to know Him better, He works. It's going to be hard. I'm probably going to cry on a weekly basis. But it's going to be so good!

As you can imagine I may be blogging about this from time-to-time. Especially this summer when I'm in the midst of it and have all kinds of stories to tell. So I hope you'll excuse me if I get really excited, because I just know that it is going to be a powerful summer, and I'm expecting the Holy Spirit to move in some big ways.

And maybe you'd like to join me in this adventure? Prayer is so needed! Here are some really practical things you can join with me in lifting up to our Father:

  • Affordable, clean housing for the staff (2 families, 2 single guys, and myself)
  • A place in the Dells where we can meet for big group events 
  • That I am able to reach 75% of my next year's budget for EDGE by early May since I won't be able to support raise over the summer [If you feel led to give, you can visit my staff page]

Thank you all so much for all your prayers and support. And excitement along with me! I'll make sure to keep you all updated. Until then... 

Monday, March 4, 2013

Free Printables: Fear vs. Love

Got back from Les Miserables at the cheap seats and was feeling artistically inspired... so I've popped these babies our for ya'll... what better way to spend a Monday [super-duper-late-for-me] night? Enjoy!

For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control. 2 Timothy 1:7 

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