prayer chain - changed

Please pray that we all leave changed with missional hearts. Pray that God wil change us, not simply change things.

"Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect." - Romans 12:1-2

prayer chain - glory (and a shout out!)

Pray that God would receive all the glory as we serve selflessly.

"make my joy complete by being of the same mind, maintaining the same love, united in spirit, intent on one purpose. Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others. Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus,  who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men.  Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. For this reason also, God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus EVERY KNEE WILL BOW, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father." - Philippians 2:2-11


prayer chain - revive

Pray for all who are serving to be revived as we work, teach, and play with children and minister to one another.

"Restore us again O God of our salvation. Will you not revive us again that your people may rejoice in you? Show us your steadfast love and grant us your salvation! Surely his salvation is near to those who fear him, that glory may dwell in our land." - Psalm 85:4a, 6, 7, 9

prayer chain - teachers

Pray for the missionaries Timothy and Keiry Jones, Kim Harrell, and others who are teaching, sharing and leading.

"shepherd the flock of God among you, exercising oversight not under compulsion, but voluntarily, according to the will of God; and not for sordid gain, but with eagerness; nor yet as lording it over those allotted to your charge, but proving to be examples to the flock. And when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the unfading crown of glory." - 1 Peter 5:2-4

prayer chain - worship

Pray that we will awake in a spirit of worship.

Splendor and majesty are before Him,
Strength and joy are in His place.
Ascribe to the LORD, O families of the peoples,
Ascribe to the LORD glory and strength.
Ascribe to the LORD the glory due His name;
Bring an offering, and come before Him;
Worship the LORD in holy array.
Tremble before Him, all the earth;
Indeed, the world is firmly established, it will not be moved.
Let the heavens be glad, and let the earth rejoice;
And let them say among the nations, “The LORD reigns.” 
- 1 Chronicles 16:27-31

prayer chain - unity

Pray for unity throughout the trip and today as we travel to have a day of fun in God's beautiful creation.

"Walking n a manner worthy to which you have been called with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace." - Ephesians 4:1-3

prayer chain - boldness

Pray as we walk around Grano de Oro encouraging the people to come to the Bible clubs on Monday that "we would open our mouths with boldness in making known the mystery of the gospel." - Ephesians 6:19

prayer chain - submission

Please pray that we would work in an attitude of humble submission.

"Younger people submit yourselves to your elders. Yes, all of you be submissive to one another and be clothed with humility, for 'God resists the proud but gives grace to the humble.'" - 1 Peter 5:5

prayer chain - travel

Please pray for the Lord's presence and protection as we travel.

"The Lord of Hosts s with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge!" - Psalm 46:7

this cute couple i know...

So my only regret about my wedding day is the fact that their are like 3 pictures of me and my husband together alone.


So my wonderfully talented friend Casey of Blissful Photography (who has been there for us from the beginning) is a budding photographer, and she took some amazingly beautiful shots of us the other day. Hey, it only took almost 5 years to get some pro photos!


(and hire her if you are in the SC area!!!)

bind my wandering heart to thee

I have SO been holding out on you!

Don't get mad yet, this is a good story. And since I can't contain it inside me anymore and keep screaming it off the rooftops...


Yup, you heard that right. My heart, the one that has been broken into a million pieces in the last few months, is going to be put back together again in the land that I have come to love more than life. It is such a place of healing. I need healing.

I honestly love serving. I really do, and I want God to get all the glory in that, not me. I love serving the youth group at my church (those kids are incredible!), the preschool class that I teach Sunday mornings, the learning center that I tutor at...the list goes on. However, and this is hard for me to admit, I am not in a good place to be pouring myself out for others right now. 

I know, you just heard me say that I am going on an international mission trip, where serving is what we are there to do. It's different. When I am in Costa Rica, I'm all there. There isn't a piece of me that I leave behind in the US (except my precious hubby this time). I am able to focus all of my energy on two things: Serving God by serving the Jones' and worshiping the God I love. There are no distractions there. No cell phones, no internet, no malls...just me, God, and the mountains. And then I come back, renewed and refreshed, ready to serve again.

I haven't decided which one is more true: whether I hear from God so much more clearly when I'm on that mountaintop in Grano de Oro, or whether he speaks louder to me then. Either way, I am going on this trip with the knowledge that my God will speak to me. When I posted about being divided I told you that I was unsure. I know now that I am unsure because I haven't been given clear direction from God, I am waiting for him. And he was waiting for me to realize I needed to go on this trip. 

Have I mentioned that I just joined this trip 12 days before we are supposed to leave? Yeah, me, the planner! I don't do things last minute like this! I don't care if I have been on the same trip 1000 times, I still like to plan in advance. God had different plans this time, and praise him, I listened and obeyed along with several other women close to me. 

I'll be back soon with the details on how God worked all of this out. 


open doors

 “Sometimes we stare so long at a door that is closing that we see too late the one that is open.” - Alexander Graham Bell


Lately I have started to realize that I view my life in two parts: before we lost our child, and after we lost our child.

Everything in my world was shaken to the core. My ability to make decisions has gone out the window. I don't trust anything I say or do to be a part of God's plan for me.

You see, before our loss I was sure.
I was sure about adoption.
I was sure about a sibling group.
I was sure about going through foster care.
I was sure about being ok with not being pregnant, or having a biological child.
I was sure.

After our loss I have been uncertain.
I am uncertain that I want to adopt.
I am uncertain that I want a sibling group.
I am uncertain about going through foster care.
I am uncertain if I want to ever be pregnant again, or have a biological child.

Before and after.

I know that I am still grieving. And grief doesn't care about my capacity to make decisions and trust them. Grief doesn't set boundaries in time. Maybe my thoughts are irrational cast in the midst of this grief and pain. It doesn't make them any less my thoughts, does it? It doesn't change the fact that right now, in this moment, it's how I feel.

The truth is, my life is partitioned into two parts. I am just wrong about the event in which my life was divided.

My life should be split into before Christ, and after Christ.

I need to remember where I was before Jesus. I need daily reminders of what God saved me from: a life of misery and unhappiness and constant approval of others.

Before Christ
I was uncertain of who I was.
I was uncertain of what life was supposed to be about.
I was uncertain of my purpose.

After Christ
I was sure of my identity in Christ Jesus.
I was sure about what my life should be about.
I was sure of my purpose.

My life needs to stop revolving around my grief and start revolving around my God again. That doesn't mean I won't be sad or upset or downright angry when I think about what we have lost, what our marriage has gone through. I am not trying to minimize my pain or the pain of anyone else who has lost a child. I am trying to cling to the God that I know holds my future in his hands. I am trying to center my life around Jesus and not around my circumstances.

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. - Jeremiah 29:11

We are selfish people by nature and I will fail at this goal on a daily basis, I know that going in. But God is bigger than my grief and my selfishness. He wants nothing more than to be the only thing I need, the only thing I desire.

“God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in him.” - John Piper

lord, be

"LORD, be gracious to us; we long for you. Be our strength every morning, our salvation in time of distress." - Isaiah 33:2