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Keep Playing!

I’m picking up a new sport called pickle ball. Weird name but heaps of fun!!  My friend introduced it to me a few months ago & I’m hooked. Unfortunately, I wish I would improve more quickly.

This morning, I played for a few hours & one gentleman was really encouraging.  He didn’t accentuate my mistakes & he applauded my good shots & efforts.  After we finished playing, I asked him for some suggestions on ways I could improve. He was really gracious & said, “Sarah, just keep playing!”

I think lots of life is like this – we get better the more we do it & the more we’re present & engage. Most certainly we go through discouraging & difficult seasons & experiences. But let’s stay in the game, take some pauses to catch our breath & keep playing.  The more I do life, I improve my chances at doing it well. The less I engage, my chances at doing well in life go down. Let’s remember that practice is for earth & perfect is for heaven 🙂

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Posted by Sarah in busy, fellowship, Genuine love, grow, Heavenly Help, Holy Spirit, listen, living, prayer, relationships, spiritual, thought life, travel, uncertainty, values, watch, 0 comments

Solutions, Provisions & Answers

Sometimes life can be very challenging. We can go through seasons when we don’t have enough money, time, energy, etc. We can also get birraged with problems & pummeled with questions. It seems to me that everyone goes through difficult times when it feels like we’re drowning & when we desperately need a life jacket, not just a life hack.

If you, or someone you know, is in this kind of a season, I pray that this blog would be helpful. In this kind of season, it’s been soothing to realize & embrace that God has more:

  • Answers than I have questions,
  • Solutions than I have problems,
  • Provisions than I have needs.

Let’s keep our eyes on & trust in God today, even hour by hour. God is helping us & these experiences can train us to know God better & trust God more!

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Posted by Sarah in busy, fellowship, Genuine love, grow, Heavenly Help, Holy Spirit, listen, living, prayer, relationships, spiritual, thought life, travel, uncertainty, values, watch, 0 comments

3 Steps for Giant Killing

The story of David killing Goliath is really well known & it can be encouraging to remember when we are facing what seems to be impossible.  It’s the quinessential story of the underdog defeating a monstrous bully.

I’ve been thinking about this story and here are some helpful observations you can apply today:

  • obeying dad:  the whole story starts with David obeying his dad’s direction to check on his brothers at the battle line with Saul.  We need to stay committed to obeying our Heavenly Father
  • leave the stuff:  David left the sheep for which he was responsible and David left his luggage before he even knew about Goliath.  It’s possible that we might be carrying too many responsibilities and too much luggage
  • run to the action:  David ran to the battle line two times, once to meet his brothers and once to meet Goliath.  Running away from action can often make giants and obstacles get bigger and last longer

Whenever you face a giant or an obstacle, strengthen yourself in the Lord!  He will give you the victory in one fell swoop or through various steps 🙂

 

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Posted by Sarah in busy, family, fellowship, Genuine love, grow, Heavenly Help, Holy Spirit, listen, living, prayer, relationships, spiritual, thought life, travel, uncertainty, values, watch, 0 comments

Is It Better?

In Cambodia, every year I come to the same neighborhood to check in on some of my friends. Last year when I popped in, I was shocked to see the whole place had been demolished. Furthermore, all of my friends had been relocated several blocks away & now they are living in tin shacks rather than the wood lean-tos precariously perched on rotten wood planks & piers.

So this year, when I visited my friends in their tin shacks I was asking myself if this is a better arrangement?

When we think about change, some of us are more nimble with change & others of us struggle to navigate new stuff. But in order for something to be “better,” I would suggest that it’s helpful to consider our perspective.  If we stay anchored in the past, it can be difficult to see change as “better.”  If we look for the negative in the change, we will most certainly find negative. And maybe it would be helpful to consider that change is one of the methods God uses to help us grow.

Where my friends live now, in some respects, is much better than the past.  But they still face the daily choice to make the best of what they have. This holds true for us as well 🙂

After:

 

Before

 

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Posted by Sarah in busy, Cambodia, family, fellowship, Genuine love, grow, Heavenly Help, Holy Spirit, listen, living, prayer, relationships, saving moses, spiritual, thought life, travel, uncertainty, values, watch, 0 comments

Waiting for a Ride

This is Dan, my Tuk Tuk driver in Cambodia. We’ve known each other for more than 10 years & I massively appreciate him!  He has helped me buy replacement clothes when my luggage hasn’t turned up. He’s collected me from the airport at really late hours. He’s driven my kids around Phnom Penh & he continually puts up with all of my random questions. We also talk about where we could place nightcare centers for easy proximity for their moms. Dan is AWESOME!!

In some ways, Dan reminds me of Holy Spirit & doing practical living. Holy Spirit will navigate our path / journey to get us to good & safe destinations. Holy Spirit helps us with practical needs & Holy Spirit lives to dream with us on bringing genuine love into daily living. Let’s stay committed to doing life with Holy Spirit regardless of when, where & how!

 

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Posted by Sarah in busy, Cambodia, family, fellowship, Genuine love, grow, Heavenly Help, Holy Spirit, listen, living, prayer, relationships, spiritual, thought life, travel, values, watch, 0 comments

Senses & Values

Presently I’m with our annual Saving Moses team trip to Cambodia & it can be entertaining to watch people’s first reactions to various smells. Some smells like durian, fish paste, roasted garlic & some body odors can be shocking & repugnant. Also, some of the things we see in the slums we visit can be disturbing & challenging to process. So when I person is introduced to a foreign culture, it requires adjusting the senses & some adapting footwork.

In these times, it’s important to keep one’s core values in the cross hairs so that we process the sensory inputs through our core values.

I want my core values to be grounded in genuine love, compassion, grace & encouragement.

So no matter what’s happening with our senses, let’s ask Holy Spirit to help us be value-minded & not merely sensory stimulated.

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Posted by Sarah in busy, Cambodia, family, fellowship, Genuine love, grow, Heavenly Help, Holy Spirit, listen, living, prayer, relationships, saving moses, spiritual, thought life, travel, uncertainty, values, watch, 0 comments

Losing Your Luggage

There’s much to be said for losing your luggage when you travel overseas. If you’re going to buy some spare clothes until your luggage arrives, clothing size can be a challenge. And toothpaste flavors in foreign countries can be quite an adventure. Of course there’s also the logistics of filing a lost luggage report w the airline & keeping track of the file reference. Clearly, I’ve done lost luggage more than once.

But here’s some upside to losing your luggage:

  • Less weight:  maybe we would be wise to offload some of our burdens into Jesus so that we can do life with greater agility & joy. Jesus said, “My yoke is easy & My burden is lite.”
  • Less image concern:  true beauty is displayed in our words & actions more than our clothing & appearance.
  •  More character:  while I don’t like this axiom, it is true nonetheless. Adversity can develop character – yea rah 🙂

So here’s to lite traveling, sturdy character & internal beauty 🙂

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Posted by Sarah in busy, Cambodia, fellowship, Genuine love, grow, listen, living, relationships, spiritual, thought life, travel, uncertainty, values, watch, 0 comments

Celebrating Freedom!!

Happy 4th of July!!  In America on this day, we celebrate our independence & recognize that freedom is one of our nation’s founding values. We also appreciate that freedom isn’t free. Indeed, to be wholly free is very costly & it requires us to be responsible.

As I think about freedom, it makes me consider that freedom is proportionate to responsibility. The greater my freedom, the greater my responsibility. This axiom is the essential backbone for both values to flourish.  For example, the freedom I acquired when I learned to drive was tethered to the responsibilities that go with driving.

When we celebrate freedom we must also recognize the responsibilities that accompany our freedoms.

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Posted by Sarah in busy, family, fellowship, Genuine love, grow, Heavenly Help, Holy Spirit, listen, living, prayer, relationships, spiritual, thought life, travel, uncertainty, values, watch, 0 comments

3 Ways to Grow from Feedback

In the recent days, I’ve had lots of feedback on sermons, writing, clothing, makeup, communication styles, etc.  In general, I much prefer the positive affirmation in contrast to stuff that’s more critical.  But alas, my potential to grow and improve is higher with the critical feedback more than only positive affirmation, with a few important ingredients:

  1. Be committed to growing & improving.  In darwinian speech we evolve through change or we become extinct with stagnation.  And no, I’m not a Darwinist so don’t get jittery 🙂
  2. The motive for feedback isn’t the main issue.  Sometimes people have good motives and sometimes people are trying to hurt us with their feedback.  What you do with the feedback is more important than the motive in which it’s given
  3. Don’t let the communication style distract you.  The way in which some people communicate is prickly on a good day.  But no matter how something is delivered, we can almost always find something helpful to grow and improve.

Finally and most importantly, stay in love with Jesus & stay true to His divine purposes.  Doing these two things aligns us for God’s participation in our lives to make lemonade out of lemons, based on Romans 8:28 🙂

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Posted by Sarah in busy, fellowship, Genuine love, grow, listen, living, relationships, spiritual, thought life, travel, uncertainty, values, watch, 0 comments

Running Out of Gas

I have a friend who routinely runs out of gas, despite texts from her husband, the warning light & calendar reminders. Similar to my friend, sometimes the demands of life exceed the energy in our souls & bodies. So what should we do when we run out of gas?

Here are some suggestions that might be helpful:

  • Sabbath – the biblical principle of a day of rest on a weekly basis is very helpful
  • Focal Point – let tomorrow stay in Gods hands & trust God to give you strength for this hour
  • Walking – strange as it sounds, taking a walk (even a short one) will often give me some added energy
  • Food – I find that when I eat lots of sugar, drink an overload of caffeine I get tired really fast (water & fresh veggies are helpful alternatives)

May God give you strength in the inside for this day!  Psalm 138:3 🙂

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Posted by Sarah in busy, fellowship, Genuine love, grow, Heavenly Help, Holy Spirit, listen, living, prayer, relationships, spiritual, thought life, travel, uncertainty, values, watch, 0 comments