Oct 14, 2013

A Time for Everything....

Dear SHINE sisters,

As I sat down to write you, I opened my Bible for strength and the "words" to say to you today.

You will never believe the verse that I turned to as I anxiously awaited God's leading in this post.

"Those who look to him are radiant; their faces are never covered with shame." Psalm 34:5. 

This verse is at the very top of this website, it is engraved on a necklace that I wear around my neck that my dear sister gave me. This verse is one of the verses SHINE girls was found upon.

God showed me this verse very early in our ministry, day two or three, I think. It has been our life verse for this ministry.

So, to have it blazing in my face when I opened my Bible just now, is well.....only a Jesus thing. That's for sure.

22 months ago, God asked me to follow this amazing journey with Him. A journey of seeking Him daily in His Word. A journey of pursuing Him like never before.

Many of you have been on this journey with me since day one. Many of you have just joined recently. Either way, my heart is overjoyed at the thought of all of you standing shoulder to shoulder to me as we trek through His Awesome and Holy Word each day.

Learning, growing, falling down, picking each other back up...every single day.

I never knew such a community of fellowship could exist among women, until the Lord showed me with my very own eyes.

The Lord is speaking very clearly to me now. When we are in His Word, we cannot help but to hear Him, friends. It's just that simple.

Last week, I spent a glorious Fall break with my children. I didn't write or blog. In fact, I even sent an email to many of my friends telling them that I was taking a "texting" break. I felt the Lord leading me to a distraction-free week.

A week of hearing from Him, and Him only.

I enjoyed every peaceful second of last week. God was showing me the beauty in the quiet. The whisper of Peace. The fulfillment of Him and Him alone.

My children are still young. As of 14 months ago, we have a third child under our roof. Life is very very full. Like, many of your lives.

The ministry that I desire most, is in my  home.

This ministry must come first if He is to bless me with more ministry opportunities. The overflow of my home ministry, will naturally flow into other ministries--if it is His will.

"If you are faithful in little things, you will be faithful in large ones." 
Luke 16:10

This verse has been on "repeat" in my heart for weeks now. God is telling me, "Jill, I have entrusted to you these little small people under your roof. Be faithful in training them up, be faithful in your time with them. My desires become your desires when you are faithful with the small things. The small things are often overlooked when you  focus on the bigger things. Trust me in this."

Everything that we have done on SHINE--the reading, the Monday memory verses, the fun Friday challenges, Serve-day Thursdays, etc...all of this was stemmed from my own home life with my children. We started these things before I ever dreamed many of you would be doing this with us. Hand in hand, day by day.

He was showing me that all those talks in the car, those verses the children and I sang and memorized together...they have all been part of a bigger plan. A plan that could only be fulfilled when the smaller plan was practiced--day in, day out.

As I rested last week in His Presence, and sought Him in His Word, He spoke to me. His gentle, sweet whisper teaching me, guiding me, pursuing me.

He's telling me to rest in Him for a while. In order to pour out to others, I must be getting filled by Him. I cannot run too far ahead, or I will get weary and tired.

Maybe this is a season, and then He will call me back to this online ministry. Maybe this is the end.

I'm not sure. Only the Lord knows for sure.

This is what I do know: I don't want to miss a day with Him. Not even a second. When He speaks, I want to listen. Not just listen, but obey. Even when my flesh cries and doesn't understand, I know He knows what's best for me.

As I am typing this my daughter is brushing my hair. I cannot help but to think of the symbolism of this act taking place.

This time is short with her under my roof.

Our greatest ministries are often the ones right under our noses. The ones that may get overlooked at times.

I encourage all of us--to not overlook the small things. Those small things are the really big things to God. Those small things become the really big things.

Thankfully, God has given me the gift of a Wednesday night group to continue on with through my church. A face-to-face, heart-to-heart group.

SHINE girls will continue. Just not in this format for now.

I will still write, oh yes. My writing is my expression of my love for Him. I will still post what He is teaching me, what I am learning--when He prompts me to write about it.

I encourage you to stay in His Word. Stay accountable in a small group, or a bible study. You may think you don't need this, but you do. We all do.

The Lord teaches us to connect with each other--not just online, or texting or phone calls --but through meeting, praying, encouraging, lifting each other up.

"And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, 
but encourage one another, 
especially now that the day of his return is drawing near."
 Hebrews 10:25


Please keep reading His Word. It's Life. 

To continue on with us, you can access the reading plan at this site:

 http://eastridgefamily.org/files/Reading%20Plan/Three%20Year%20Bible%20Reading%20Plan.pdf

{this is actually the whole 3 year plan! we are on year one}

My SHINE girls Wednesday night group and I will still be reading, still be studying, and still be meeting. 

One last note: As I cried my eyes out at church yesterday about this with two of my mentors--Becky Foy and Robyn Bailey-- they both said this:

"Sometimes we miss the GREAT things that God has for us because we get tied up with so many "good" things."

Oh, girls, let's don't miss the GREAT things. Let's listen. Let's obey. Let's follow Him. Wherever He leads.

"There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens"
Ecclesiastes 3:1



missing you already,

jill