Can You Give Me a Hand?

GAMELIFE Motions

What a fun way our family learned to share God’s Story with others through the use of hand motions! This  summer we traveled to Peru with e3 Partners and helped to implement a new ministry called GAMELIFE whose goal is to reach a child to engage a family to plant a church. It’s pretty simple…

 

 

 

You can teach the kids in your life Creation to Christ with hand motions! Check it out:
1) In the beginning God created a perfect world.
2) Sin broke God’s perfect world.
3) The penalty for sin is death.
4) God’s Son Jesus’ sacrifice paid sin’s penalty.
5) Jesus was the only perfect man.
6) Jesus died.
7) Jesus was buried.
8) Jesus rose from death to life.
9) Because Jesus died for your sins.
10) Jesus now offers you the gift of eternal life.
11) Would you like this gift?
12) With faith ask Jesus to be your Savior.
13) Go tell everyone this good news!!!
Can you do it??? #e3Legacy #e3Partners

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Save the Date! North Texas Giving Day – September 17, 2015

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The Key

538c90_dbbf723a7a459c2119d8239f167005be.jpg_srz_344_343_75_22_0.50_1.20_0[1]This past Saturday, I ran the 2nd annual McKinney Mini Half Marathon. It was the 2nd race in the past 2 months I’ve gone it alone without any family members present. At the end of September, I was forced to carry my van key the entire 10K distance in one hand while I carried my $15 mp3 player in the other hand. I don’t have a fancy ipod or phone that I strap to my arm or carry in a waist pack. I don’t like those waist packs. I’m not sure how good I’d look sporting one of those. You know you want to look good coming across that finish line!

So the day before the Half, as I was picking up my race day packet, I saw one of these:

DSCN0766This was my answer! Yes, I could just place my key into this cute, little pouch and strap it to my shoe. I was set to go.

Now, a little about me and races….In most every race I run, I just run to finish. I mean who wins these races? However, once I won in my age group at a local 5K race a few years ago, I always run to win that one. And then with each half marathon I run, I try to beat my own time from the previous race. It’s a sickness I have. And then I did it. I won the 1st Annual McKinney Mini last November for my age group. It was not my best time, so I did not meet that goal, but is sure was fun to bring home 1st place any way. When I had a discussion about this with my doctor this summer….you know, telling him I put pressure on myself to always beat my previous time, he chuckled and said, “When we get older, we don’t get better. We should just be happy we can run the race.”

Boy, do I have a story to tell him about Saturday’s race….

There I was at the start with the key in my “Shoe Pocket” & strapped to my shoe and my mp3 player in my left hand, ready to go. I was lined up towards the front of the pack, and upon the starting gun, I took off with the group. In a matter of seconds, I looked down to see how my “Shoe Pocket” was doing, and it was flapping like a flag in the wind. I thought, “I cannot run 13.1 miles with that flapping like that. What if I lose the key out there somewhere. It’ll never be found. I’d better scoot to the side and take it off.” I quickly made my way to the side….only yards from the start, and much to my horror, the key! It was GONE! Already missing! You hear of split second decisions, and here I was faced with one. Do I go back and look for it? How will I get home? All this while hundreds of racers were blurring past me. I decided to turn and run. Someone would find the key and give it to race volunteers, right? So I actually sprinted pretty hard because now I had lost time! How can I beat my time or even get a good time if I had stopped?! The first few miles I was occupied with scenarios playing out in my imagination:

  • As soon as I cross the finish line, I’ll ask a volunteer for the lost and found.
  • If my key has not been turned in, and I cannot find it after retracing my steps and scanning the ground, I’ll ask to borrow someone’s phone. (*Who does that these days?)
  • I could walk to the soccer game the twins will be playing in a few hours. It’s only a few miles from the race site.
  • What will Dwayne say about my losing another vehicle key? (*One of our van keys has been missing for a year or so. We have to share that key. Remote entry keys are expensive to replace!)

Finally, I prayed and asked God to have someone find the key and turn it in and also to give me a peace and to stop worrying about it. The race went on, and I found it easier to run than last year. It helps when you know the course. I could picture each turn and each section of the course ahead in my mind. The last mile and a half was brutal as it was uphill. This race is advertised as flat. I don’t agree! However, I could not believe it when I saw that I could actually beat my own time! To my joy and excitement, I did! But more things were on my mind….I had to find that key!

There were several vendor tables and a few volunteer tables. Would you know on the very first table I walked up to was my lone key?! Just sitting there! Thank you to kind racer or spectator or volunteer who took the time to pick up that key and turn it in or place it on that table! Thank you, Lord!

DSCN0768Then the morning got even better. Although I did not take 1st, I did receive 2nd in my age group and 2 minutes off my personal record. I’ll take it!

I know there are lots of take aways from this event. No one was there to share in it with me, but I think that’s how God wanted it. There are some things He wants to show us, and sometimes we need to be alone with our thoughts and with Him…even in the midst of 100’s of people.

  • Over and over again the Scripture tells us to pray…do not be anxious about anything; pray about everything; and pray in the Spirit on all occasions; etc. Thank you, Lord, for reminding me again that this is the KEY to living a life with You.
  • The race was easier to me this year because I knew the course…I need to trust my Father who also “knows the course”. He made it. He engineered it.  I need to stick closely to Him and not run ahead or lag behind. I need to fill my mind with His Word so I can stay in the game and on course.
  • I had no cheering section. Over the course, I saw individuals and families out watching for their runner. I crossed the finish line, was given my finishers medal, & later, quietly collected my 2nd place plaque, got in my car (with my key!), and drove home. The world is not going to cheer me on when I take a stand for Christ or spend my time, money, and talents serving Him.
  • In a letter to the Corinthians, Paul said, “Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but only one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may win.” While there is some truth to the point that “we don’t get better with age”, I know we can keep running the race set before us, and with God’s help, we can be victorious…even if we don’t get 1st place in the world’s events.
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A Perfect Love

DSCF9017I never knew the hurts, disappointments, & decisions of these 4 precious ones would be magnified so intensely deep within my own heart and cause such heartache. Oh, to go back to this season when I had control over all things in their lives (or so I thought). I am so grateful for that day, over 6 years ago with little feet splashing in cool water….grateful for the God who loaned these babies to me already had all of their days ordained for them before they were even born (Psalm 139:16). I’m even more thankful for the reminder this past week that I have a Father who is not of this world, who “has inscribed (Followers of His) on the palms of His hands.” (Isaiah 49:16) and who is able to “sympathize with our weaknesses.” (Hebrews 4:15) Thank you, Father, for reminding me that your love for us is higher, wider, and deeper (Ephesians 3:18-19)  than the love I have for my own children and how Your heart must ache even more intensely than mine does over this fabulous 4.

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Competitive Spirit…

DSCF1995This past Friday, we hosted our 6th annual Easter outreach. About 23 kiddos showed up. The two years prior, we hosted around 40. I don’t know what it is, but I always put pressure on myself to out do what’s been done the previous year. Every fall since 2006 (with the exception of 2009) I’ve run a half marathon, and each race I am competing to beat my last time.

When I was disappointed we didn’t have as many kiddos here as in the past for our party, I decided I am weary of trying to “up one” with each thing I do! Now I have always been a very competitive person, and I believe competition can be very beneficial and healthy. (Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men. “Colossians 3:23) One of our kiddos inherited that gene from his momma, and, boy, is it a blast to watch him compete at any sport he plays! I love how he always gives it his best and has a never quit attitude. Lately, I’ve come to the conclusion that he is just like me in many ways. I’ve gained a little wisdom as I’ve aged…kids in school always thought I was so smart. It wasn’t that I was all that smart….I just worked hard, didn’t settle for less, always wanted to be at my best. This kiddo of mine is not the smartest in the class either, but he sure gives it his all, and because of that, he flourishes.

102_0269There he is flourishing. He wasn’t the best on the team, but it was sure fun to watch him play baseball last year because he never gave up.

Paul said, “Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but only one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may win.” (1 Corinthians 9:24)

So what if I don’t beat my next time in my next race? What if my boy doesn’t win his next game? What if I don’t have as many people show up at our next outreach? All I know is it wearies me to think through these questions, and I am able to receive the peace I need when I am reminded that Jesus said, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” (Matthew 11:28) and “My yoke is easy and my burden is light.” (Matthew 11:30)

And when it comes to obeying His commission to go into all the world and preach the Good News to all creation, thank you, Lord, that it really does not depend on me or the numbers I manage to increase. For Paul also wisely said, “I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the growth.”

May I always do my work “heartily as unto the Lord”, but may my prideful, competitive spirit not get in the way….

 

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