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Simply…Living For Him

Simply...Living For Him

Jesus is Enough. Our Third Simply Living for Him Retreat

When a writer is at a loss for words…you know this is some serious business! But seriously, I have been trying to find the words for several days now, and they just don’t do it justice. But I will try…

We held our third SLFH Women’s Retreat this past weekend and what an amazing event. I am still processing all that took place, and my lips haven’t stopped praising God!

How do I even begin?

Well, you all know that the past two years, these events were beyond my expectations-you can read about it here and here. But this third one was even more beyond! How is that even possible?

God.

You see, when women come together to simply seek Jesus, it is one of the most beautiful things! This year, 35 women came together from all different walks of life, all different parts of the country (two even came from SEATTLE- all the way across the country!) and all different stages of life. Some of us may never have the opportunity for our paths to cross in real life…

But God.

We all shared the most important common thread- Jesus. And that was enough.

Our theme this weekend was Jesus is Enough and throughout my sessions, I talked about how God has always provided for us (not just physically, but spiritually) and He will always provide abundantly for us. Because He has provided the One and the Only thing we need- Jesus. And His death and resurrection are what our very being is centered on. Our life is found when it is lost. When we empty ourselves of us and fill up on Him, Jesus is Enough.

I didn’t record this year’s sessions but I think that is just how God wanted it. Some of them got pretty personal and I shared some of the darkest parts of my testimony. But I did so in order to share that I am TRANSFORMED on the inside because of Jesus. After years and years of searching in all the wrong places for purpose and for life, I finally found it when I found Jesus- and now my purpose is to glorify Him. And as I saw this photo taken of me in Gettysburg, I couldn’t help but think of my favorite Psalm.

Psalm 40:1-3

I waited patiently for the Lord;
he inclined to me and heard my cry.
 He drew me up from the pit of destruction,
out of the miry bog,
and set my feet upon a rock,
making my steps secure.
 He put a new song in my mouth,
a song of praise to our God.
Many will see and fear,
and put their trust in the Lord.

One of the most beautiful parts of our weekend was that we all came together to share our love of Jesus. And we all have a story to tell and at the center of those stories is Jesus. He has redeemed.

Our retreat was blessed with the most perfect weather. The sunrise on the first day was spectacular. Pictures will never do it justice.

And the sunsets in Gettysburg with the amazing fellowship was icing on the cake.

These ladies are so much fun. We laughed, we cried (cleansing tears and happy tears!) and hugged, we prayed, we worshipped…I could go on and on…

Here are some more glimpses of our time together:

The future Simply Living for Him ladies- my daughter with another attendee’s daughters!

Women pondering what it means to be satisfied. Jackie Foster gave a fabulous session!

 

Worship was led by Robin Miller once again. She is amazing! And my dear friend Jackie gave a session- she is so wise.

Friends for eternity!

The 2018 ladies.

Thankful for these people! Their support is essential and they go above and beyond.

 

Last year an attendee was struggling with infertility. We prayed for her. A few weeks later this beautiful boy was conceived…and this year he attended the retreat! BEYOND BLESSED!

As I look to next year, we are not hosting a July 2019 retreat, however, it is not the end of the retreat. I am seeking God’s leading on when and where to hold the next one and how it will look. I know this is just the beginning of what God will do through Simply Living for Him. My mission here is to point others to Jesus and I believe this weekend that mission was accomplished. It’s not to hard to do when your love for your Savior is great!

I went Live on Facebook today talking a bit about the retreat. You can watch here:

As I look ahead to the future of this ministry, I am excited to see what God does. To Him be the Glory!

Simply...Living For Him

A Slow Letting Go…

As I sit here and type, my eyes are filled with tears and there’s that lump in my throat. My head hurts a little and I have that melancholy feeling of sort of just being out of sorts. It that makes sense.

My boys are outside playing with friends. They’re having a good ol’ July water fight. I bring them towels. I offer freeze pops. They keep shooting water and screaming at each other, and barely notice my offers. I mean, they’re certainly capable of getting towels and freeze pops. Seriously, my two teen boys already tower over me. My presence doesn’t feel like it’s much needed. But I still hover for a bit and then head inside.

It’s quiet inside. I walk from room to room, fussing with a few piles, putting a few things away, trying to find a place that needs tending to.

My 17-year old is gone for the day. In her very own car, out with a friend, and then she’ll drive herself to worship practice this evening. I check in and text her every once in awhile.

Just because.

And then I think to myself, “Was it worse when they needed me incessantly, non-stop around the clock…or not much at all anymore?”

The lump is there. The eyes are stinging.

I know. Everyone said this would happen….one day. But it seemed to come out of nowhere, even though it really didn’t. They went from needing me less and less to not much at all.

And of course, we always need our mamas, but it’s different. It’s a different type of needing.

This past year has been a year of transition. A letting go…a little at a time. As we approach the last six months before adulthood for my oldest, the transition has been a good one overall. There have been bumps and there have been hard parts. But overall, it’s been good.

There are just sometimes, when a little at a time, I just ache. I hear that baby voice in my head, but it has been replaced by the low tone of a teenage boy. I pray with them over life choices rather than teaching them to use their “inside voice.” Instead of worrying about naps and schedules, I worry about them driving.

Times have changed.

I remember the endless nights without sleep, tending to needy babies. Those teenagers now aren’t sleeping at night, but it has changed. It’s not because they’re fussy. Now, they want to stay up late hanging out in our room, laughing and story-telling. I struggle to keep my eyes open past 10 pm, because I know to savor those moments, so I stay awake.

It’s a slow letting go…although a necessary one…this time of life. Teens hanging there in the midst of adulthood.

A mom that was always tending to little ones, now trying to find her place in the big one’s lives.

Yes, a slow letting go. For me and for them.

Yet, I love watching them grow. I love who they are becoming. So this time is just as sweet as it stings. Because they are growing into who God made them to be. And all is well.

 

 

 

Simply...Living For Him

The Great BIG Purge of 2018- Living Clutter Free

I know I write about having less clutter. I know I talk about living with less…but sometimes, life creeps up and you go, “WHAT??”

Yeah. That was us these past few days.

You see, we switched bedrooms for our kids this week. We went from, “Let’s just try moving the beds to see how it looks” to being knee deep in two bedrooms (four kids between those two bedrooms) worth of stuff.

I am telling you. The floor was covered in stuff. There were mattresses in the hallway. There were pieces of beds everywhere. There were clothes, Legos, books, and every little thing these kids have collected over their years. Exploded between the two bedrooms.

At one point I was trapped in my room because the mattresses in the hallway were blocking me from getting out. I laid on my bed and proclaimed, “I can’t do this anymore!”

Now I know in the grand scheme of things, this is not a big deal. But still…

So, there we were knee deep in stuff and I thought, “How on earth am I the Simply Living for Him lady…How did this happen?”

Now on the surface, their rooms really were not that cluttered because our house layout is kind of “different.” The area upstairs (where we all sleep) was intended when it was built to be a small apartment. They converted the layout when they built it for a son to live with his elderly mother, but they never ended up living here. It was still brand new when we moved in and we sort of turned living areas into bedrooms. One for my daughter, and one for my three sons to share. So frankly, their rooms are HUGE. My daughter’s new room is like a studio apartment. So while things never looked cluttered before because it was a large space, when you empty it, you do realize how much has accumulated over the years.

Let’s just say we now have approximately 20+ garbage bags of trash.

And then there was the “homeschool closet.” Part of this cleanup involved our wall length storage closet that we used to keep all of our homeschool books and supplies. It has certainly accumulated stuff over the years from used curriculum sales, well-meaning hand-me-down books, and four kids worth of school. But as I went through it, I realized we will need very little of it. My daughter graduates next year, I know what the boys will use for high school…and my little guy…well we have learned to truly KEEP IT SIMPLE.

So I’ve got TONS of boxes of homeschool books that I am giving away.

It’s been freeing to get rid of this stuff, but the process admittedly was overwhelming. I am thankful for my kids, who have even greater organizational skills that I do, more energy than I do, and certainly a great deal of perseverance.

Join me on Friday when I talk about all that I learned from this massive decluttering~ It is about much more than just the stuff! NEW PODCAST EPISODE will be up then!

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Simply…Seeking Him: A Journal

**TIME IS RUNNING OUT- SLFH2018! Registration Ends June 3oth!

This summer, I am hosting a women’s retreat in Gettysburg, PA. In a world of excess, we are going to focus on that fact that Jesus is enough. The world will tell you YOU are enough. But truly, HE is enough. He is all we need. We don’t rely on ourselves, or earthly comforts, but on Him alone.  I have lived with it all stripped away, and I have seen that yes, Jesus is enough. In fact, Jesus is MORE than enough.

Early Bird Registration is Open! Join us for this life-changing and life-giving event. You will spend two days with other sisters in Christ, tired of what the world offers, and ready to live the life that HE offers.


SIGN UP for Our Newsletter (Grab 2 FREEBIES)—>Newsletter

Check out where I am speaking in 2018—-> SPEAKING (UPDATED)

Listen to the Podcast—-> PODCAST

Watch my YouTube Channel–->YouTube

Visit my homeschooling site–>Bible Based Homeschooling

Shop Simply Living for Him——>SHOP (new items added!)

 

Simply...Living For Him, Simply...Seeking Him

I always thank my God

You all know my desire and passion to get all of us in the Word every single day. What better way to use my space here on the Internet than to fill it with Scripture.

Every single day, I will have a new scripture on the blog, sometimes with thoughts about it, sometimes with questions for you to ponder, and maybe sometimes just the scripture itself. But no matter what, I am vowing to publish Truth each day so no matter who comes to this space, can find a treasure. There are no greater words to read than God’s very own words.

So while I will still be publishing my usual blog posts and podcasts, I will also have a scripture each day right here on the blog. I pray this blesses you and encourages us all to get in the Word each day. I also hope the scripture I share here is NOT a substitute for sitting down and opening the Bible yourself…but perhaps a reminder, an encouragement, or a starting point. Ultimately, there is no substitute for getting into His Word each day.

Let’s all vow to be seekers of Truth! Let’s start simply…seeking Him.

See all the posts here

Philemon 4-7

I always thank my God as I remember you in my prayers, 5 because I hear about your love for all his holy people and your faith in the Lord Jesus. 6 I pray that your partnership with us in the faith may be effective in deepening your understanding of every good thing we share for the sake of Christ. 7 Your love has given me great joy and encouragement, because you, brother, have refreshed the hearts of the Lord’s people.