6 posts categorized "Ministry Moments"

October 08, 2008

Yesterday's Clothes...

JordanAngieDirtbike

Greetings, Dear Friends,



And to those visiting, I say welcome! I post every Wednesday and my sole purpose is to nourish your soul along the way.

Before I get into my topic, I have a little business to take care of. Each month I give away a $10.00 Caribou Coffee gift card to someone who posts on my blog (although my son thinks I should switch to Starbucks. What do you think?). 

Leave a comment; share your heart; you might win a couple of cups of java!

The picture above is of my son and his girlfriend after a time of dirt biking. I think it's adorable. It doesn't exactly fit my topic but sort of. 

Now on to my topic...

Last weekend I spoke at the beautiful Camp Lebanon in Upsula, Minnesota where two hundred women gathered to meet with God. It was a glorious weekend. 

But something troubled me...

Though my messages went well and women seemed to track with me, I felt something was blocking God's blessings for these women. It's one thing to hear a nice message, it's another thing to be transformed by the very presence of God.

Each night at bedtime, I curled up in a ball, hugged my pillow, and prayed. I prayed for the women and their precious hearts. I prayed for myself, that I might be a reliable messenger. I asked God to please show me if I was missing anything. Anything.

In addition to speaking at the main sessions, I offered to lead a Power Walk and teach a Power Stretch class. We had a great time together.

Sunday morning I prayed in the shower; I prayed while blow drying my hair; and I prayed as I put my clothes on for the day. I prayed that God would speak to me and through me.

I grabbed my socks off the floor and put them on my feet. They weren't especially clean. Okay, they were dirty. The Power Walk had taken its toll on my little white socks. But no one would see them under my black boots, right?

The whisper across my heart surprised me, "You might want to put on some clean socks." 

Huh? 

I prayed that profound prayer again, "Huh?" 

The Lord continued speaking to my heart, "You might want to put on some clean socks because you'll be removing your shoes in the service today. I want you to ask everyone to remove their shoes this morning because they are on holy ground. This is the Sabbath day and it's to be regarded as holy. These are My beloved Ones and they need to see themselves that way. My call is profoundly high and all need to consider it so. Re-establish the fact that I am a Holy God and you are My people." 

My knees were instantly weak and my eyes welled up with tears. 

I bowed my head and prayed. I committed the morning to the Lord, and I went and found the worship leader. I asked her to add a certain song to her list. I couldn't stop the tears from streaming down my face. She asked, "Are you okay? Do you feel sick?" 

I replied, "God has something special for these women this morning and I don't want even one of them to miss it." 

The worship was powerful and the stage was set. 

When the time came for me to take the stage, I was all choked up. I shared what the Lord had shown me that morning. I added, "God's arms are full of things He intended to give you this weekend. Some of you run the risk of leaving this place without ever receiving what He has offered; maybe it's because of a hardness of heart; maybe because of unbelief. But I ask you to humble yourself. Look up. Open your hands. Receive what He so lovingly wants to give. All too often we wear yesterday's dirty rags when daily, God offers new mercies to us. He has a new thing for you today. Receive it." 

Women responded right away. 

I put on a beautiful song and with the lights down, we took off our shoes. Many kneeled to the ground. Quiet sobs of repentance erupted. The room became a sanctuary.

Many women came forward and received the prayer and encouragement they so desperately needed. 

Something broke loose that morning and we were all so blessed to be there. 

You know, without even thinking about it, many of us put on yesterday's rags. The rags of sameness, of doubt, of unbelief, or cynicism. 

But what about expectancy? What about hope? What about God's promise to do a new thing in our midst?

In this world we are promised to have troubles. But we're also promised overwhelming victory. Overwhelming. Victory. 

No circumstance can keep us from a fruitful, powerful, thriving life. 

But our own unbelief can.

Dear Lord, 
Forgive us for the countless times we've picked up our dirty socks and put them on our feet without even thinking about it. May we remember anew each day that the earth is Yours and everything in it! May we embrace today, that You've offered fresh mercies and new garments to Your people. May we slow down long enough to receive the peace and the comfort You so willingly offer us. And forgive us for the many times we've treated holy opportunities as common, everyday occurrences. You are everywhere. And we matter to You. What a privilege it is to be linked in fellowship with You. May we never take that for granted. Thank You for Your great and unexplainable love. Amen.

Here's to new days and new garments of praise!

Until next week~


September 03, 2008

Good Gifts...

Cottageinthewoods

Greetings, Dear Friends!



And to those visiting, I say welcome!

I post every Wednesday and my sole purpose is to nourish your soul along the way.

I'm having a little trouble with the font function on my blog and I apologize for the two font styles and sizes on today's post.

Before I get into my topic, I have some business to take care of. Today I get to announce the winner of the $50.00 VISA gift card and the five recipients of a free copy of my new release, The Uncommon Woman.

Drum roll please...

And the winner of the $50.00 VISA gift card is: Denise! Denise, I don't have your last name but you posted on my blog in August. Please email me at info@susielarson.com to claim your prize. I know your email address so I'll recognize your address when you contact me. :)

And the five winners of free copies of 'The Uncommon Woman' are as follows:
Kelly F
Loree Arington
Anna J
Clair
Michele 

Please contact me at: info@susielarson.com to claim your book.
Congratulations one and all!

And one more point of business: As usual, this month I'll award a $10.00 gift card to Caribou Coffee to someone who posts on my blog. We're entering the fall season and for many of us, a warm cup of java soothes the soul. :)

Now, on to my topic.

This morning during my devotional time, I spent some time reading the Gospel of Mark. Quite a number of verses impacted me but for some reason, this one especially jumped out at me:

For truly I say to you, whoever gives you a cup of water to drink because you belong to Christ will by no means lose his reward (Mark 9:41).

A cup of water. A small thing, no? 

Well, not really. Not ever.

Has anyone given you a cup of water recently?

I can think of a number of instances for me personally:

  • My husband and I volunteered to host the Varsity/JV football(and their friends) safe party at our house. We said we'd do it if someone could help us with the food. My friend Kay cooked sloppy joes for 125 football players and their friends because she's Martha, and I'm not. Amazing. 
  • One of my mentors asked me to come over for a snack and a time of prayer because during her prayer time, God spoke to her about me and she had some things to share. 
  • My son Jordan, before he left for school yesterday, prayed that God would heal me. 
  • A woman I'd never met face-to-face, offered to organize a speaking event and book signing because she believes in the things God has given me to say.  
  •  A friend has volunteered to come to my house and help organize my files (and my closets and my drawers) so I can start out my speaking season fresh and ready.     


God cherishes the gift of these precious saints so much that He Himself has written down their deeds in the Book of Remembrance. And though I'll find my own ways to express my gratitude, God considers their gifts important enough that He Himself will also return a blessing. 

Their gifts to me are divine and refreshing. And to God, those gifts bring a little of Heaven to earth.

What about you? Has anyone recently blessed you with a cup of water because you belong to Him?

Pause for a moment and consider the idea that those things are sacred and precious to God. Pray for those people and return a blessing to them.

Now let's look at this from another angle. 

Proverbs 3:27 says this:

Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due, when it is in your power to do it.

Give some things away today.

Give away a smile. Give away your place in line. Offer up a prayer for someone you don't particularly like. Send a card. Write an email. Make a call. Pay for someone's coffee. Forgive a debt. Forgive an offense. Offer mercy instead of judgment. 

Because you belong to God, and because it matters to Him that we bless others, give, give, and give some more. Not because it makes you look good, but because it makes Him glad.

Let's take one more angle and then I'll let you go for the day. :)

Read this verse:

If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how-much-more will your Father in Heaven, give good gifts to those who ask Him (Matthew 7:11)!

Daily, God pours out His blessings on a waiting and watching world. The problem is, most of us aren't waiting or watching.

Jesus loves to give good gifts - gifts that are specifically designed with you in mind. 

The Bible says that He delights in every detail of your life.

Think about that.

Don't be afraid to ask Him for gifts, for intervention, and for a cup of water when you're in a dry and weary land.

Ask, seek, knock. For those who ask, receive; those who seek, find; and those who knock, the door will be opened for them.

Be thankful for the countless ways people come through for you. Notice their deeds and take them to heart, because God certainly does.

Be a blessing and give something away every single day. Your load will be lighter and you'll bless another.

Be sure to ask God for what you need and thank Him for the ways He has come through for you - and for the ways that He will most certainly come through for you. 

Aren't good gifts just the best?

Until next week~

June 28, 2007

God Heals!

Jordan_and_me

Greetings, Dear Friends!

I can't wait to share with you today. My normal posting day is Wednesday but I was way under the weather yesterday. Even so, what I have to share with you today is way better than anything I could have posted yesterday.

As many of you know, my son Jordan injured his back some time ago. He is an active athlete and yet for six months he hasn't been able to lift his foot more than a foot off the ground. He had a terrible disc herniation which was pressing on three sets of nerves.

Jordan's girlfriend's mom (Carrie) was praying for Jordan one morning and sensed so strongly that Jordan would not only be healed, he would come back stronger, faster, and better than ever.

Continue reading "God Heals!" »

October 23, 2006

Sisterhood Rocks!

Sisterhood_pic

Dear Friends,

I usually post every Monday morning but today was a travel day for me. This weekend I had the privilege of speaking at a retreat set in the mountains of Chalis, Idaho. Every year the women of Twin Falls Reformed Church hold their women's retreat at the beautiful Living Waters Ranch. We had a great time together and I have to say, I LOVE THESE WOMEN! Spending time with these precious women made me want to get home and wrap my arms around every one of my girlfriends. What a gift God has given us in our girlfriends!

Continue reading "Sisterhood Rocks!" »

October 03, 2006

Fill Us With Your Glory!

How lovely is Your Dwelling Place, Oh Lord, God Almighty!

Wow! What a weekend we had together up at Covenant Pines in McGregor, Minnesota! This was the second of two retreats and God blessed us more than I can say.

Over and over again, God chose to remind us that we are LOVED and we are CALLED. My words were met with great warmth, enthusiasm, and excitement. When you have a group that shows up, expects God to move and wants to hear what He has to say, you have a recipe for a compelling time. This is a picture of the beautiful, empty Covenant Pines Chapel, just waiting to be filled with ready and expectant women. Such women showed up and God blessed us beyond measure!

Covpineschapel_2

Continue reading "Fill Us With Your Glory!" »

September 18, 2006

Small Miracles

God is in the business of miracles, no? Amidst the intense needs and crises of our day, Jesus still loves to make Himself known in a very personal way. My youngest son Jordan is a football player, he is also one who loves Jesus. Recently during his dreaded (but not really) two-a-day football practices he injured his knee. He walked in the door with an obvious limp. My husband wanted Jordan to see the trainer. Jordan looked up with absolute sincerity and said, “Dad, I really don’t want to go to the trainer with this. Jordan_and_me_2

Continue reading "Small Miracles" »