Thursday, November 7, 2013

Finding the vestibule of heaven

Moving across the ocean has forced me to take cover
in the shelter of the Most High.
I have taken refuge under His wings.
Walking in a foreign land has forced me
 to "live out" the words that have previously been before my eyes.
Up until this "uprooting", often it has been read and glean.
But, coming to China has changed all that.
I have a much larger dependence and an intense need for the "Living Word".

I have to "live" in Truth!  I have to make sure it's enveloped around me.
I have to meditate on it and ask for the faith to believe.
I have to desire it becomes alive in my spirit.
I have to ask for strength from Him.
I have to ask for His perspective,  His desires.
I have to purposefully look with supernatural vision amidst all
the physical distraction competing for my attention.

I know that the Holy Spirit has a strict watch over me.

He is Sovereign.  He has brought me here.
He has a right to do as He pleases with me.
I want to look beyond my temporary challenges to what God is doing.

I must be where God desires.
I am His, He is mine.
He is so gracious and His kindness showers me in His Fatherly way.
He is telling me that through all of the strain and stretching,
He has pledged Himself to make me all that I would love to be!

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Regular life on campus

It was a gorgeous fall day today in Beijing and as we were walking on campus,  I thought it would be fun to share the regular things about living here on The B.I.T. campus.

We have quite a few dining halls/restaurants on campus and we've been going to the staff dining
hall and the picture above is the reason.  Picture a medium mixing bowl full of noodles they are 
making when you order them.  Then add what you want from quite a few choices of vegetables, 
beans and meat.  The young man always laughs nicely when he sees us because we can tell him what we want in Chinese, but he knows if he asks anything else we have no idea what he is saying.  That bowl, by the way, sets us back 8 RMB, which is $1.31 U.S.  Today was special, three male teachers joined Glenn and I for lunch and we had fun getting to know one another.

You make friends with so many different people here.   Most Chinese people are very kind and they are very relational.  We go to the fruit and veggie market and they want to talk to us and when you keep going back to the same vendors they usually give you a free treat every now and then.  Today it was two small clementines.  Oranges and clementines are so good here!  Very, very juicy!

This evening after getting a few groceries and fruit at the market we went around the corner to a small vending area of street food.  There is a vendor with two young men that have a freezer full of frozen meat kabobs and a big open fire going with a grill top.  You pick, they cook it as spicy as you want it.  This sets us back 3 RMB (.50 U.S.) and it's so delicious!  Next to them is a noodle vendor.  They have two different refrigerators, one of meat and they other full of trays of different veggies.  You pick a basket and put all the meat and veggies you want in it.  You give this to the waiter, they weigh it, you pay and in a few minutes you have hot steamy noodles for about 18 RMB ($3).

One of the things I really like about China is all the vending on the streets.  Everyday there are all kinds of vendors mostly anywhere you go.  They are selling a variety of nuts, foods, phone cases, journals, clothes, socks, slippers and yummy drinks.  My favorite is a cold green tea that has such a good flavor.   It's fun to be able to make purchases without going in an actual store.

The little convenience store on campus is handy for our staples and a few sweets that are familiar comfort foods.  Tonite we picked up a few packs of mini donuts, bread and oreos.  The downside is they only sell bagged milk, which for us is great for cooking and not so much for drinking.   There also we can get any sewing done that we may need, copies made for Glenn's students, money put on our phones, and watch repairs done.

So to wrap up, I want to share something that hopefully will at least make you smile.  There is a very common saying in this country:  "It's China", meaning anything goes in China.  We laugh because it's true.  We see everyday things here that would definitely cause a second look, but here it doesn't attract any attention.  In China, it's so much about relationships and not appearance.  You can wear the same thing everyday and I really don't think it would be noticeable.  You do what is necessary here.  You have one bike and a family of three?  You all, in some way ride that bike. You meet someone and you are both hungry or it's time for a meal?  You go eat together and you'll get to know one another over that meal.  You like a striped shirt and a flowered skirt?  Wear them together, here it is not a faux pas.  And here is the smile (or laugh) part: You want to show your friends/family a squirrel you saw?  You put it in your fanny pack and take it to them on the subway!  Yep, anything goes in China and most of the time it doesn't even get a second look!

Monday, September 23, 2013


Whether moving to China, teaching a new course, shopping in a market or building relationships with students, leaving comfort for courage makes us want to wrap our arms around every ounce of safety in our life. From the outside, leaving comfort and safety looks and sounds alluring and attractive, but the attraction fades quickly. 

Moving from comfort to courage will… cause us to question our decision. It will cause us to look around for the safety bars, seatbelt,  any kind of security button.

Moving from comfort to courage will… cause us to try to make something happen.  Scheme, make phone calls, send out hail mary e-mails—anything to distract from sitting in the fear.

Moving from comfort to courage will… cause us to doubt our abilities.  We will look at everything that we have failed at in the past … failed relationships, failed financial decisions, failed leadership calls—and we will wonder if we will repeat those patterns and if they are indicators to go out and look for comfort again.

Moving from comfort to courage will… cause us to doubt the author of the calling on our life.

Moving from comfort to courage will… cause us to be jealous of your supporters/teammates. They seem to be perfectly content with their lives.  We will wonder if we are some sort of crazy person that has a unhealthy propensity to live on the edge.

Moving from comfort to courage will… cause us to look for the easy way out.

Moving from comfort to courage will… cause us to feel weak in the knees—a good indicator that we should stop standing up and get ON our knees.

Moving from comfort to courage will… cause others to question us.  We will be misunderstood, questioned, and perhaps even seen as foolish.

As we've finished these first two months,  we remember to listen to Him tell us to settle down, to trust and to release every one of these fears into the everlasting arms. It is impossible to invite others into a life of obedience if we are unable to live it ourselves—so today we will be strong and courageous in Him.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Where God Has Planted Me

I am planted, physically, in Beijing.
I am determined to make this feel like home for the next year.
I am desiring to embrace China's culture.
I am exactly where my Father has purposed me,
and with all my flesh I want to please Him!

I am planted, emotionally, in contentment.
I am asking the Father to keep me firm in this soil.
I am learning everyday to "take every thought captive to obey Christ".
I am exactly where my Father has purposed me
and with all my emotions I want to please Him!

I am planted, spiritually, in a guarded position of hope.
I am relying on the Holy Spirit to supernaturally work this in me each day.
I am thinking on, "whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just,
whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, any excellence,
anything worthy".
I am EXACTLY where my Father has purposed me,
and with all of my spirit I want to please Him!

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Gifts from Glenn

I have been so blessed to be able to see our children
 and their families before I move :)
One of the things of love most about my husband,
 is his tender heart towards me.
He loves his children and granddaughter also,
very much...but he knows it is different for a mom.
He knew how much it would bless me to take two
visits before I left.  These two things will make it
much easier for me in the "homesickness" department.

I am so relational and I thrive being around folks I love.
Obviously, after the Father and Glenn
would be my children and their families.
So what a wonderful touch to my heart when Glenn
told me that I needed to go see them before we left!

The last month has been a whirlwind with
leaving my job that I really enjoyed :)
Saying goodbye to friends and being
commissioned to "go" at church.
Along with that was a memorable trip to
CA where Dan and Cara totally spoiled me with
their hospitality :)  I am in KS now and instead of
beaching it, bike riding and sharing coffee and
conversation....I am playing Candy Land, Playdoh,
stickers, painting, kitchen and house!  LOL

I am praising Father for
these days! He is stirring up His
Will for us these last weeks and although
we will be sad to leave many, we both
feel we are getting very anxious to go!
His desire has become ours, and that is beautiful!
We are asking for wisdom and courage,
the same that He gave to Paul.
Knowing that He will give us both!

He is our ROCK!

Saturday, May 25, 2013


Just about every day I think about some part of God's plan for getting us to China and each
time I think, "God, I still am in awe of what you have done!"  "How did all this happen"?  I think back to about five years or so ago when I slowly His plan began to unfold and smile in my heart.  Our church had a missionary preach one Sunday and Glenn and I both sensed the Holy Spirit speaking to us.  As we both shared with one another, neither one of us were quite sure what He meant yet.  Glenn knew, however, that he was to finish his schooling to get his undergrad and while he was doing that I began to search for missions availability for us.  God presented "The Finisher's Project" to us and we knew from researching them that God was clearly pointing us in this direction.  Over time, we began waiting until they would have a weekend conference in our area and in March 2011 we attended.  The conference was wonderful and we received God's confirmation that we were definitely on the path He was calling us to.  There were many mission agencies represented at the conference, but we were drawn repeatedly to English Language Institute China (ELIC).  When we returned and began to seek God on this, He led us to go on ELIC's annual vision trip in October 2011.  Previous to this trip, Glenn and I both shared that we seriously doubted that God was asking us to go there more long term, but we thought it would be great to see China.  When we arrived there, we were astounded!  God not only gave us a love for the Chinese, but confirmed over and over again that, yes, this is where He was calling us to.  We were sad to leave, but we knew that we would return.  Since then, God has confirmed so clearly His call for us to China.  He has raised our support to go, He has sold our home, He has given us Chinese friends, He has given us a love for learning the language and He has given us the supernatural ability to "let go" of things here.  We love our country and all of our family and friends here.  It will be hard to leave all that we are used to, but we love our Lord so much more and He is the one that deserves our all!  We are blessed and honored to go to China to join others in making Jesus famous!!  This is a window of an amazing opportunity for us and we are going to SNAG IT!

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Fastened Face

As a follower of Jesus 
I have many privileges
I can scarcely take them all in.

Each one is my birthright
and the most delightful of all
is Beholding Jesus.

Being in God's Word
and cultivating the truest
riches of beholding and
knowing Jesus.

I come with a cry in my heart
to see Him and to know Him!
I come to gaze upon the majesty
and mystery of the altogether
Lovely One.

My heart cries out, 
"I want to know You, Lord!
I want to behold You in Your Scriptures.
I want to know You and the fullness of
Your power!
Manifest Yourself to me in Your Word"

To know more of Him requires revelation,
and revelation requires meditation in His Word.
2Cor.3:18 "But we all, with unveiled face,
beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, 
are being transformed into the same image from
glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord"

How I long to behold Him! I have a certain kind of envy of the living creatures who do not turn
from facing straight ahead no matter where they go. Whether they go up or down, left or right, forward or backwards, their faces are constantly facing straight forward at the throne! This is how I want to
live my life!  That no matter where I go and what I do, my face might be fastened upon the throne
and beholding the radiance of my beloved Lord.

I am forever fascinated with the adventure of growing in the knowledge of Him who died for me!

Tuesday, April 16, 2013


I am clinging to the Cross of my Beloved.
BOUGHT with a price.
The MOST PRECIOUS price of God's ONLY Son
who came to die the most horrible death
so that I may live

HOW can anyone  NOT fall in love with the ONE
that not only is their creator,
but the ONE
who created LOVE!

Saturday, April 13, 2013


Surreal Blessings from God's Hand!

Yesterday was one of those days that are hard to explain.
Maybe you've had one, I'm sure most everyone has.
You NEVER expect it, you don't ever think about it...
but when it happens you look back and say "Wow, the things
 that took place today, made me think God opened His hand and dropped these beautiful 
gifts into my day!"

Without any planning at all, my replacement for work was hired today!
(I will be leaving work mid-June to move to China)

Without me letting ANYONE know that I had been searching for a significant
way to be connected to my granddaughter.
With so much distance between us, I want her to know
that I am thinking of her so much and that I love her and pray for her.
So today, God used one of our patients to share with
me what she does to stay connected to her
long distance granddaughter!
This patient had no clue how I had been struggling to come up with some
way to share something special with my granddaughter over the years!

And the third sweet "SURREAL" thing that happened in the same day:
I went to the store to pick up a few things and a young man
that works there that is always full of joy was working.
I always run into him and we always chat for a moment.
Today was different.
He said to me in a somewhat 
louder voice,
"Praise Jesus, can I get an Amen!"
I said to him, "That's something I will always give!"
Praise JESUS!

Monday, April 8, 2013

Sensitivity to my idolatry

Almost everywhere at all times fasting has held a place of great importance since it is closely linked with the intimate sense of religion. Perhaps this is the explanation for the demise of fasting in our day. When the sense of God diminishes, fasting disappears.
-Edward Farrell

I am regularly asking my Father for a fierce and intense ever-increasing LOVE for Him!
There is nothing else in my life as important as this.
Not my hubby, my children, my granddaughter, my parents, my job, my money, my house, my stuff....
absolutely nothing can compare to the love I want for my Savior!
I want to go into the depths and love Him as never before.

I will keep asking Him.
I will keep pursuing Him.

I want to keep being homesick for Him!

Friday, April 5, 2013

A visit to remember

The most special things to me this Easter:

Dan and Cara came in from CA for a week!

Glenn and I both took vacation time!

The weather was wonderful with some warmth and sun and
some beautiful snow that Cara and Dan had been longing to see!

Family and old friends in our home Easter Day to share love and laughter!

Playing Sequence and Po-Keeno with much laughter!

Dan and Glenn shooting out back at the shooting range!

Dan and Cara shooting out back at the shooting range!

Cara FINALLY getting diagnosed!

Going to The Strip and Station Square for the day!

Cara helping me "pretty up" my blog!

Skyping together with Brent, Christy and Madeline!

Stopping by to see Scout and loving on him a bit!


My son-in-law, who by the way has such a tender heart, was led by the
Holy Spirit to prepare a wonderful Good Friday reflection study for us
to share together!

And, through issues that the evil one was attempting to orchestrate so
to damage our desire for wonderful relationships....GOD was victorious
and increased our communication and godly bond with one another!


Monday, April 1, 2013

Beautiful Reflecting

With Easter brings newness!
Even though I celebrate the idea of this beautiful season everyday, there is still 
something amazingly wonderful about having a day to actually have on the
calendar to share what Jesus did and to reflect what happened two thousand years ago.   
To also think deeply about possibly what Jesus went through that whole week leading
up to His crucifixion.

A sweet unexpected gift our family received this Good Friday was my son-in-law
having it on his heart to prepare a time of reflection from God's Word of what
Jesus endured during this time.  It was unforgettable and I will always remember
this Good Friday night for the Good Friday's to come in the future.

This time together really had I focus more on what Jesus must have felt about
what was going on at the time.  The loneliness He must have felt, the anguish,
the idea that He knew He had to endure the beatings, the floggings, the spitting,
the cruelty...for there was no other way that we could escape eternal separation
from God!  He was the only Way!  He loved us enough to take on all of this
for me.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

spiritual eyesight

I love so many many things about my Father.
One of the most absolutely beautiful things of Him
is His way of giving me the ability in my spirit to see with spiritual eyes.

This morning I was blessed to see with this eyesight in a way that humbled me so.
The hardest thing was containing the joy from what I was seeing!

I can say, honestly without a doubt, that this journey towards China
has continually blessed my soul.
I would never want to go back before it all began!

I choose to fiercely live in my birthright!
I am truly humbled!
I get to go to China!

Monday, March 11, 2013

A 360

The term "360" is on my mind and heart these days.

It's because of what God is teaching me in trusting Him fully in everything.

When I naturally tend to look at the circumstances that cause me to doubt and begin
to step away from fully trusting in the FAITHFUL ONE, in God's strength I do a 360!

I move my glimpse of the material to a gaze onto my FATHER'S face!
There I choose to linger upon the ONE I believe and know can do ANYTHING
regardless of any type of circumstance!

This material world is not my home and soon it will pass away.
I refuse to put my trust in something that will not last.
My trust resides in the One True Creator of all and daily I am
learning to turn about when the first hint of doubt appears and
do a 360 and focus on Jesus' face and BELIEVE!

Saturday, February 23, 2013

In the school of FAITH

I consistently ask my Father for His equipping in preparation for going to Asia.
Only the Spirit has given me the wisdom to know to ask for this and I am fiercely
pursuing the understanding and the supernatural ability of faith.

Only by the grace of Him am I unlocking new treasured understandings of this single word.

I have to say this has been the most treasured find so far:

True faith is a radical departure from the status quo, a renewal of personal conviction despite all contradictions and a recognition of UNCERTAINTY. Without a recognition of uncertainty, faith has no meaning. The strength of true faith is that it acknowledges that uncertainty exists, and yet still forges on in spite of the uncertainty, willingly accepting and embracing the consequences of conviction in the face of uncertainty. There is not fear that the conviction may be misled and flinching because of the uncertainty, there is a recognition that this lack of absolute rational proof and certainty is what gives faith its supreme virtue. This is what makes faith courageous and is something that only mortal humans can do, since angels are blessed with absolute knowledge whereas humans are blessed with uncertainty, which is the only way that true freedom can exist. Without this freedom, the choice of "faith" would not be possible, would not be courageous, and would not make mortals eligible for the reward of heaven.   (taken from a review of Soren Kierkegaard's, Fear and Trembling)

To Kierkegaard the human experience is that of making choices; perceiving something objectively does not require a decision or commitment, and as such it cannot really be called existing. However, when uncertainty is present, the individual must take charge of his or her life and make a decision whether to believe or not. "The greater the uncertainty - the greater the risk the believer takes in believing - the greater the faith," and there's really nothing that takes more belief, more faith, than Christianity, which is not just irrational, but in fact a paradox (Anderson 52). "When the paradox is paradoxical in itself, it repels the individual by virtue of its absurdity, and the corresponding passion of inwardness is faith" (Anderson 53). 

I am LIVING IN PRAISE of all that my Father is giving me the ability to understand and to see around me.
I can feel His continual equipping in my spirit!  HALLELUJAH!!

No one can understand Abraham, for the entire act occurred within him, between him and God. Kierkegaard writes "Abraham cannot be mediated; in other words, he cannot speak. As soon as I speak I express the universal, and if I do not do so, no one can understand me." Abraham of course cannot express himself in the universal, ethical sense, because "he has no higher expression of the universal that ranks above the universal he violates." Abraham performs the ultimate act of faith: he risks everything, and then by virtue of that risk, of his faith, he gets it all back. It makes no sense at all, but that is how religion operates, according to Kierkegaard. Even believing the story of Abraham requires an act of faith, for "the observer cannot understand him at all; neither can his eye rest upon him with confidence." But while having faith is tremendously difficult, Kierkegaard stands in awe of it: "to be able to lose one's reason, and therefore the whole of finiteness of which reason is the broker, and then by the virtue of the absurd to gain precisely the same finiteness - that appalls my soul, but I do not for this cause say that it is something lowly, since on the contrary it is the only prodigy (Anderson 60)." (Philosophic 271).
It is difficult to find flaws with Kierkegaard's argument and description of religion, since he is not speaking in rational terms, and not trying to convince his audience through the methods of logic. He does seem to be taking faith as a prima-facie good, and since the whole of his argument basically stems from the idea that faith is inherently worthwhile and beneficial, it's a bit of shaky ground to be on. But that's not really the point: faith, like Abraham's situation, cannot be mediated, simply because it is by definition irrational and inexplicable

I know what it is to gain something by giving something up, and I know how you have to lose yourself in order to find yourself.   It's all subjective and it's all irrational, and it's something you cannot explain.  That in itself, is absolutely wonderous!

This has been my current schooling and I am totally dependent upon my Father for this kind of supernatural FAITH!  He is my teacher and I desperately want what He is teaching me.

Father, HELP me shout the GOOD NEWS!

Monday, February 18, 2013

Scout's in retirement

Twelve years ago we brought Scout home and he has been a wonderful pet for our family!
He has always had the best disposition and he's made so many friends, here at our house.
He has never given us any problem and what a people pleasure he has always been.

Glenn and I wanted him to have a good home since we can't take him to China and
the Father already had this taken care of.

My path crossed in December with an old friend from Beaver County and she asked
me what we would do with Scout?  The rest is obvious, her and her family are now
the proud owners of Scout!  It was the perfect timing for them to have an interest in
having another dog, since their golden has been gone two years.

They will make a great home for him and Scout will enjoy a lot of exercise with them
and time laying in front of their fireplace in their cozy home.  They have been so dear in
telling us that when we or anyone else wants to see him, we are welcome to come visit or
take him for as long as we want!

Our Father has been in every detail of His preparation for us to go and it's been such
a delight to be even more amazed!

True faith counts on Him, and believes before it sees.

Friday, February 1, 2013

He was first

We love Him because He first loved us.

This popped out at me yesterday and I have been pondering on these words.

 I understand this to mean that I would not have loved Him if He had not
first loved me.

His love preceded my love for Him.

He loved me before I had any desire to be loved by Him.

He conquered my hard heart and my strong will with His love for me.

I am compelled to love Him, because He first loved me.


Wednesday, January 23, 2013

JOY uncontainable!

I am joyfully walking under the anointing of the Father's gift of Spirit!  I have asked for more of the Father's equipping that He needs to do in me before He leads me out of the country.  He is growing my faith by leaps and bounds!  He has and is teaching me to keep my focus on Him and not any circumstances.  He is and has been teaching me that I only have to please Him and more recently He is teaching me more and more about relying on the Helper He has given me.  This has been so rich and wonderful!  I am loving this so much... He is giving me His chosen Words to pray over my life right now and I feel as though my joy is uncontainable!  What a wonderful privilege, to walk supernaturally on this earth...every step I take, whether here or somewhere far away is still according to His direction.
I scarcely can take it in!