Thursday, September 26, 2013

If today was your last day...

Disclaimer: There is zero fault in the liking of the movies mentioned. They were used simply as reference in the making of this blog post:)

     Have you seen the movie with Queen Latifah Last Holiday or the ever famous Armageddon? Both of these movies have a character in common... Both the Queen and the crazy astronaut "Rockhound" found themselves in their last days and had choices to make.

Queen Latifah's character was a dependable, hard working, all around "good person" that received some devastating  news about her health. She quit her job and cashed in all her retirement saving bonds, deciding to live her last days "becoming somebody". Though it was fun for a moment, she was still alone, experiencing temporary happiness and...left feeling un-fulfilled. Since she included Jesus in her journey, talking to Him throughout each new experience and giving her hopes and dreams to Him, He was faithful to hear the desires of her heart and ultimately walk her through the trial all the while bringing glory to Himself. 

Romans 8:28
And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose.  

The astronaut risked everything planning not to return from his space mission and took a ridiculous loan living up his last moments on earth in Vegas as a "somebody" in status and importance from the world's standards.  Again, finding temporary happiness upon his impending fate. Though, once the fun was over and he was left to himself, he ultimately...went crazy and was tortured by his thoughts. You see Rockhound did not include Jesus and looked at his situation from a worldly perspective. He saw the situation for exactly what it was and what he could do in his own strength. Ultimately witnessing the sacrifice of others and having to return and face the consequences of his choices.

Psalm 73:26
My flesh and my heart may fail but God is the strength of my heart
and my portion forever.

   I've prepared to be your movie critic and shed some light on the root of where they each went wrong...

     Now, as a christian we are called to live in only today. For tomorrow will worry about itself and yesterday is already gone. William W. Purkey said it like this:

“You've gotta dance like there's nobody watching, 
Love like you'll never be hurt,
Sing like there's nobody listening, And live like it's heaven on earth.” 

     Tim McGraw sang it like this:

I went sky diving, I went rocky mountain climbing,
I went two point seven seconds on a bull named Fu Man Chu.
And I loved deeper and I spoke sweeter,
And I gave forgiveness I'd been denying.
An' he said: "Some day, I hope you get the chance,
"To live like you were dyin'.

       The point of these is that each day we wake up in the morning is a gift. Slow down and re-prioritize on a regular basis. Take the time to turn bath time into play time, plan and save for that vacation you want to take, call that friend that crosses your mind, choose to close your eyes at the end of each day being unburdened by the days events and the should of, could of, would of's. For we are here but only a moment... 

     The world around us thrusts us in to fast forward and we can easily lose sight of  what is required of us to not be so self-focused that we miss those divine appointments made by Him to reach outward and walk those in our sphere of influence into the realm of eternity. In the Last Holiday she was waiting for the perfect time to become somebody not seeing that she was strategically placed right where God wanted her and she had a ministry in the daily tasks of her life.  In Armageddon, Rockhound was tortured by his thoughts and awaiting his opportunity to get away from the choices made in a life of regret. 

     If somebody were to be watching the movie of your life, which movie would it more closely mimic in these mentioned? It's never too late to change your script and even your characters before the ending credits. 


Sunday, September 15, 2013

God's Call to Action...

          I was running late, so I called the nursing home to let my step mom know I was on my to my dad's birthday party.  The nurse who answered the phone asked me if I had spoke to my step mom, and if hadn't  I needed to call her as soon as possible.  I hung up thinking that's odd then I dialed the phone and it went straight to voice mail.  Which in itself was not unusual, because she usually didn't have her phone on.  I called the nursing home back got the same nurse.  She got quite, asked me if I was driving and if I was I needed to pull over.  With a sense of dread I did just that.  Then she told me that my dad had passed away before midnight and was sorry that she was one the who gave me the news.   I told her thank you and then hung up.  For a moment in time I just sat there  in my van in the rain.  I was stunned at the news for I had just seen him two days before and I had no idea he was on deaths door.  I had just reconnected with him the week before after a long period of not seeing him.  I  sat there and cried, for the loss of life and the loss of not knowing who my dad was. 

         My sister Mary flew in from California the next day, and as I was waiting at the airport for her plane to come in.  I started pondering life and all the relationships in my life.  You see I didn't know my sister either this would be the second time we would be meeting.  The first time we made promises to stay in touch and call each other.  We were good at it for a while and when she moved to California we lost track of each other.  We are much closer now and we try to take the time for each other.

       My dad's family is Mormon and the bishop asked Mary and I to speak at his funeral.  We of course agreed, that's what family members do right?  We went out for coffee to go over what we were going to say.  As we looked at our blank pieces of paper in front of us, we realized we did not know our dad enough to speak on his behalf.  This really hit home for me, I wanted to honor my step mom but at the same time I did not know what to say.  I mean he was not a part of my life, he was not even a small childhood memory.  I have no bitterness towards him and I love him because he is my father.  I believe only because the love that Christ has for me was I able to do this.  Mary and I decided to ask Rose, his wife some question about him.  The look in her eyes when she talked about our dad made me realize she truly loved him and he made her extremely happy.  This knowledge helped me have peace with his passing. 

     On the day of his funeral it was my turn to speak, I got up and spoke about things Rose had told me, and then God stepped in and spoke his love and truth through me.  I had added some verses to my talk and while I was speaking I looked down at his wife of 30 years and there was tears of joy on her face.  Yet again there was that feeling of peace that only God can give come over me.  At the reception several people came up to me and thanked me for the words that I had spoken, and even told me that they were very comforting.  I smile said my thanks and gave it back to God. 

     Through this whole season God really spoke to me and continues to speak to my on the relationships I have in my life.  Whether it be a family member, a friend, a stranger on the street.  I need to give them all of me, not just what I want them to see.  To be that loyal committed and trustworthy friend.  To be the friend that will love you in kindness and yet at the same time speak truth even if it hurts.  To get to know a person and who that person really is.  I don't want it to be to late to share God's love for them.  I don't want it to be to late to let them know me and who I am, what my beliefs systems are, and let them have the feeling that I truly want to get to know them.  To make every interaction with someone count, and not waste time on the little things like having to be right.  To show them the grace that God has shown me.  For we are only here for a brief moment in time and the time is now to be in the present.  My prayer for you and myself is that you take a moment to reflect on who God has put into your life.  God does everything with a purpose, take a moment and ask Him what purpose he has for you and the people He has placed in your life.  You will probably be surprised by His answer because at the same time it is a call to action, are you ready to answer that call? ~Missie

 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. 
Romans 8:28

Monday, September 9, 2013

Annelise, simply amazing

My name is Annelise. I'm a 27-year-old newlywed living in Idaho. I have a blog called Aunie Sauce where I write the story of my life & share my journey through photos. I attend church with the amazing women behind this blog, and I'm honored to have been asked to write this post for you today.

I introduced myself ahead of time to show you that I'm a normal person... but since I was 16, I've struggled with the disorder called trichotillomania (the disorder of pulling out your hair). See, I didn't want to just come right out and say that, because you might either click the little "x" in the upper corner or you might immediately think I was crazy. To be honest, in the beginning—I thought I was crazy too.

I began pulling out my eyelashes and eyebrows when I was in high school. It was my way of dealing with stress and change, and I found that out after several counseling sessions, lots of medication, hypnosis, acupuncture, and every other "treatment" in the books—you name it, I tried it. At one point, I had absolutely no eyelashes or eyebrows. It was during that time that I was cheerleading for Boise State University, and I was always in the spotlight. I had very low self-esteem and was always asking "why me?" It was a constant struggle.

It was about four years later in March of 2012 that I found myself sitting in Harvest Church, tears streaming down my face, and I made the choice to be saved and ask Jesus into my life. Finally, for the first time in my life, I began to pray. I prayed for so many things... but I also prayed about my trich. I prayed for healing, for peace, and for God to use me and my disorder to help others. Let me tell you what—God answered.

For the past several years, I've also written a blog called LastLash. On it, I've documented my journey and struggles with trich, detailing the ups and downs. It wasn't until I was saved that my voice about my pulling changed. In fact, it wasn't until I was saved that I began not having the desire to pull as often or as much... it just wasn't as much of a big deal for me anymore. And that wasn't anything that I could have done on my own. I did it with God's help through prayer.

Gone are the days when I used to say "why me?" Now, I know that God gave me trich to use it to help others. Not only am I helping to inspire others to stop pulling, but I'm doing it through Him and through His word. I can't credit any kind of drug or counseling session with my new-found strength and freedom from the binding power of trich... I credit it all to God. Now, I haven't been cured completely from trich, but prayer has helped me lessen the frequency of my pulling and the overwhelming urges to pull. God has given me verses to look to (Mark 5:34) when I'm having trouble, and the ability to talk to Him when I need a moment of strength.

The point of all of this isn't about trich. You see that, right? The point is that if you're struggling with something, He is the answer. God can help lessen your burden and take that weight from your shoulders. He can be your shield and your power and your saving grace. With Him, anything is possible.

Monday, September 2, 2013


     I begin this post with great reverence as this has been a very tender season for Myself, My family, My friends, My job, My finances, My relationships, My children, My home, and My life has all felt the affects of what I am about to share...

     I pose this question: Are we under a RADICAL ILLUSION as Christians in today's fast paced, numb, desensitized, techy generation? By what means have we justified our actions, our thoughts, our responsibility in training the next generation and preparing them for God's call on their life?

     Psalms 7:6-11 amplified
Arise, O Lord, in Your anger; lift up yourself against the rage of my enemies; and awake (and stir up) for me the justice and vindication (that) You have commanded. Let the assembly of the peoples be gathered about You, and return on high over them. The Lord judges the people; judge me, O Lord, and do me justice according to my righteousness (my rightness, justice, and right standing with You) and according to the integrity that is in me. Oh, Let the wickedness of the wicked come to an end, but establish the (uncompromisingly) righteous (those upright and in harmony with You); for You, who try the hearts and emotions and thinking powers, are a righteous God. My defense and shield depend on God, Who saves the upright in heart. God is a righteous Judge, yes, a God Who is indignant everyday.

     I've witnessed a relaxing in the Church when it comes to a couple of key areas, that have left impacting impressions on our children. Entertainment is the biggest time filler of this generation. Movies, Internet, Facebook, and Commercials are all geared towards the eyes of our soul and if we condone the screen content then we are undoubtedly sending our children the silent approval for the actions that follow, such as our children dressing provocatively just as their peer groups. Also, teenage dating eventually leads to participating in pre-marital relations like so many of today's young that have encountered the consequences of such behavior. The Bible speaks a clear warning in I Peter 5:8 Be well balanced (temperate, sober of mind) be vigilant and cautious at all times, for that enemy of yours, the devil, roams around like a lion roaring (in fierce hunger) seeking someone to seize upon and devour.

     Radical change requires Radical action! I urge you to examine your flexibility in these and any other areas that may distance you from the presence of God in your daily walk. The time is now! Ephesians 6:11 Put on God's whole armor (the armor of a heavy-armed soldier which God supplies), that you may be able successfully to stand up against (all) the strategies and deceits of the devil.