Monday, May 12, 2014


Something REALLY cool happened to our family a few weeks ago... we got to meet Tim Tebow!

For those of you who may not know, Tim Tebow is a BIG DEAL around our house.  I graduated from the University of Florida.  I'm a Gator.  I bleed orange and blue.  And by association, Jonathan, Beau & Lydia are all Gators.  They bleed orange and blue.  We've been Tebow fans since day 1.  We've followed him from Florida to Denver to New York.  Beau & Lydia started talking right around the time Tebow became known at Florida.  Whenever they saw anything related to football, regardless of the team, regardless of the position, regardless of the person, they referred to it as "Touchdown Tebow."  They associated everything football with Tebow.  We've watched shows on Tebow, read books on Tebow and have idolized Tebow for his values and faith.  We own four shirts/jerseys with #15 on them.

My home office is decked out in Gators.

Beau's room is covered in Gators. 

Let me tell you about meeting Tebow.  We shook his hand, he signed autographs for the kids (he actually signed Beau's jersey which was AWESOME) and we took photos with him.  We probably had contact with him for no more than 2 minutes.  His interactions with Beau & Lydia were sincerely warm.  It is obvious he loves kids.  He was gracious and friendly.

It was a great experience and I am truly grateful.  I wouldn't take it back.  But something changed for me after that encounter.  I realized that Tim Tebow is... just a guy.  A guy who meets thousands of people each year and who probably tells every one of them the same thing he told every one in my family, "God Bless."  I think that is a great signature line that he has.  And I believe he sincerely means it.  But this experience brought into clarity something profound for me.  I know a lot about Tebow and I admire the way he carries himself and the way he openly loves Jesus.  But Tebow doesn't have a clue who I am or anything about me.  This man who is incredible and Godly isn't God.  And as great as I think Tebow is, I know God is infinitely greater.  And the God of the universe is not just an awesome God that I admire... He knows me intimately.  And unlike the 2 minutes I got to spend with Tebow, I can spend every minute of every day with the One who created me.  

It's wonderful to have earthly heroes.  Tebow's witness and testimony are truly something to be admired.  But let's not forget that the one who made us (the one who made Tebow) is available 24/7 and He's perfect.  We don't have to stand in line to see him and we don't have to leave thinking, "That was cool but it was a meeting without substance."  

I love this passage in Psalm 77:16-19

16 The waters saw you, God,
    the waters saw you and writhed;
    the very depths were convulsed.
17 The clouds poured down water,
    the heavens resounded with thunder;
    your arrows flashed back and forth.
18 Your thunder was heard in the whirlwind,
    your lightning lit up the world;
    the earth trembled and quaked.
19 Your path led through the sea,
    your way through the mighty waters,
    though your footprints were not seen.

God is at work in and around us all day every day, even though we cannot see him.  He is a hero who is always there.  He can truly rescue us.  He knows and cares about every aspect of our lives.  Any earthly hero will fall short of that.  God never will.

If you get a chance, I would recommend you meet your earthly hero.  It's neat to say you did.  But if you don't, take my word, they're just humans.  One thing we all have an opportunity to do is spend time daily with God.  Greater than any hero and more knowledgeable about us than anyone.  Encounters with God are much more fulfilling than any encounter with an earthly hero might be.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Barking Birds

It's me... I'm alive... And well!!!

I want to write again.  I really do.  This morning I don't have anything major to report on or share, but I just felt God leading me to write.

I am REALLY struggling with finding my purpose.  It's my word of the year:  PURPOSE.  Finding and living my purpose, helping and praying for my family to know and live our purpose together.

I have known for several years without question that my gifts are teaching and leadership.  Over several years prior to my valley journey I was very blessed to serve in roles that utilize those gifts.  When the valley journey started winding down (in 2013), I really wanted to start teaching a Life Group again, but I felt God telling me to wait, to just learn to abide in Him before taking on ministry opportunities.  When my friend called in the first week of 2014 to ask if I'd consider helping her teach her Life Group I knew unequivocally that God was working.  I started teaching again in March.  Preparing for lessons has been much more rewarding... but delivering them has been a source of major frustration for me.  I feel completely ineffective and out of place... like a barking bird.

This morning as I was praying I could hear the sweet sound of a bird singing right outside my window.  It was God's reminder that even little birdies have special gifts.  They aren't supposed to bark or meow... they are supposed to sing.  And I started wondering... am I trying to be a barking bird??  Is teaching a class still where God wants me?  I thought so... until recently.

I'm only writing about this because 1) I felt God tell me to write and 2) I know of many other Christians who struggle with this.  A lot of my friends are serving where they need to and they know it and they are very effective.  But some of my friends serve and feel uncomfortable and don't like where they're serving and some of my friends are in prayer about where God wants them to serve.

Last week as I was preparing for my lesson I looked through some of my old blog posts.  As I read I was drawn in and realized that I need to go back and re-read everything I wrote because it is still so applicable.  In that moment I believed God gave me the gift of writing.  And now I wonder, is my teaching to be in written form verses spoken to a group?  Is that where I am most effective?  But then a little voice in my head nags, "What are you going to write about?" or "I thought you knew God wanted you to teach." And honestly I don't know.  Today I just felt like if I sat down and wrote (in obedience to what I thought God wanted me to do), that words would come.  Because when I go back and read what I've written in the past I realize that I actually didn't write any of it.  It was all God.  He just used my computer, my brain and my fingers.

Maybe it's not important for me to have a daily or weekly epiphany of faith.  Maybe it's enough to just sit and write... about life, about thoughts, about weaknesses, about failures, about wins, about barking birds!

I know for a fact that God has a plan: Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord...

Perhaps He wants me to write AND speak.  I guess for now, I'll just take one day at a time and see where the road leads.  I will continue to pray for PURPOSE.  I will continue to seek and serve and listen and wait.