Monthly Archives: July 2013

Learning to lean: God’s control over fear and doubt

Romans 8:26

Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness.  For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words.

During the month of June, I had the unique opportunity to complete my student teaching experience at at a public school in Eastvale, Ca.  I had never heard of this little city prior to the phone call I received on May 30,2013.  I was to report to Eleanor Roosevelt High School the following Monday.  My heart raced, my physical body sped into 5 th gear and I began to prepare myself for the month ahead.  Logistically, it was difficult as I still had 2 weeks of teaching left at Bethel.  So, with 2 days to scramble, I prepared sub lesson plans and found out as much as I could about Roosevelt High and directions to Eastvale.  It would be a long (50 minutes) but smooth drive each morning at 6am.

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Upon arriving that Monday, I realized that this would be quite the experience as I would have 55 students in each class, which lasted 3 hours, without any time for student breaks.  I ended up in an art classroom where students had to sit on stools in table groups, constantly being distracted by everyone else around them.

Though the 4 weeks seemed to drag on, I now reflect and realize just how fortunate I was to get this opportunity.  I learned more about classroom management than I ever really want to learn ever again (wishful thinking) and I learned much from my Master Teaching about planning and being flexible.

I learned that I can embrace the “uncomfortable” circumstances in life.  Even though I generally live each moment wanting to “get through” the uncomfortable, I realize more and more that there is an OVERWHELMING increase in my faith and trust in my Savior as I learn to lean on HIM more, and seek HIM more. I was up every morning, earlier than I would have normally been, because I was sure to approach the day asking for HIS Spirit and wisdom and comfort and guidance (and trust me, I needed each one of those things on a second-by-second basis).  Even now, I look back and realize how much less I seek HIM in the comfort of summer.  Lord, may I remember how you covered me with mercy and grace in those days, and seek YOU like that, no matter what.

My husband was a tremendous support.  There were many mornings when I had mental and emotional breakdowns, nearly refusing to leave.  He ALWAYS supported me and had the EXACT thing I needed to hear.  I do not know what I would have done without him, as he offered a hand to hold, a shoulder to lean on, and an ear to listen.

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I learned that I have angels watching over me.  I drove the 50 minutes there and back each day, for 20 days without any car problems.  I listened to sermons, songs, and devoted time to prayer for others during this trip each day.  WHAT A BLESSING!!!! I received texts, facebook messages, emails, and phone calls on a daily basis; God used these to reveal his care over me.  I also was encouraged by my Vanguard family – my professor Sylvia Kane, my credential analyst Randee Loya and University Supervisor Mark Ryan, and other faculty like Michelle Romo, Shelley Vaters, and Rani Rommelfanger were right by my side, with positive encouragement.

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“The Same God” – Newsong

I Peter 5:6-7

Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time.  Casting all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.

Five Minute Friday – Belong

The Gypsy Mama shares this great idea to write every Friday for 5 minutes on a topic.

Want to take five minutes with me and just write without worrying if it’s just right or not.

 

I look out over the desk in front of me and wonder, “Where does this paper/note/idea belong?”  I have been reading this book about Organization for Teachers. Friends and family look at me funny when they hear me say that I don’t think I am organized because I have kept up this facade that I have things going on in that department.  However, I am a “stacks” girl.  I generally know WHAT stack something is located in, but generally speaking, things don’t Belong in that kind of chaos.  So, I will work toward accomplishing the goal of becoming a little more organized each day.

This brings me to life, however.  Sometimes I just don’t feel like I BELONG.  It’s difficult to meet new people…I think, “I don’t belong with this group.”  It is narrowed down to insecurity.  Generally, I get through it and have met some pretty awesome people when I open up and share myself with others.  But it is definitely one of those areas I am gifted in.

I am blessed to belong to the King.  I am His child and never have a need to worry about how I belong in His life.  I can see it through His care over me, His protection, His provision, His guidance, and the security I have in knowing that I don’t have to “hope to fit in”;  I am automatically accepted.  Thank you, Father.

Five Minute Friday: Present

The Gypsy Mama shares this great idea to write every Friday for 5 minutes on a topic.

Want to take five minutes with me and just write without worrying if it’s just right or not.

I love when I hear words that have multiple meanings and uses.  So, today’s word present poses this problem.  What do I write on….well, I am not much for presents that you get or give. I have a difficult time figuring out what to give to people.  I once asked someone how they figured out what to give during Christmas and they told me that they just pay really good attention to others throughout the year, which then made me feel extremely impersonal and aloof (which may be partially true).  The best way to chose presents is when you know you can just ask what someone needs and they really tell you (I am a fan of gift registries for this reason 🙂

But my mind thought of being PRESENT.  I immediately thought of how I wish that I would be constantly open to God being present in my life on a moment-by-moment basis.  He is there, right?  He will never leave us nor forsake us….so, I realized it’s just me.  I have this struggle with living in the  past or fretting about the future.  Lord, help me today to allow your PRESENCE in my life to change me, so that I will focus on the way you are guiding and directing my PRESENT life.  Give me confidence that you take my past and guide my future, but that I need not waste the PRESENT moment where you are offering guidance, protection, joy, and endurance.

She Shares: Not just created, but FORMED

Gen. 2:7  the Lord God FORMED the man of the dust of the ground

Phil 1:6 being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.

What a mighty and awesome Creator who took time to intentionally FORM us into a beautiful creation and then continues to form us into HIS complete purpose, no matter how great or small in our eyes. May we live today, being confident that HE directs our life and wants us to be transFORMED by His will (Romans 12:2). Take on the laundry, the chores, the schoolwork, the work-work, the relationships of our day, the care of our children, the choices, knowing that HE is a loving and caring God who fashions each moment. May I submit to the great things HE has planned for my day.

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She Reads Truth

Five Minute Friday – Beautiful

The Gypsy Mama shares this great idea to write every Friday for 5 minutes on a topic.

Want to take five minutes with me and just write without worrying if it’s just right or not.

BEAUTIFUL…

I know it’s the usual….”God makes all things beautiful, in HIS time.”  Short and sweet little song you usually learn in church.  But I feel my life is beautiful.  The beauty has come from wreckage, from ashes, from doubt and confusion, from insecurity.  But….beautiful, nonetheless.  Do I always understand why or how and when things will be clear in the midst of the fog and continual “June gloom.”  No, not usually, but I am learning that the fog is sometimes the best place to be.  See, there is generally a beautiful scene pictured beyond the fog along with hazards in the way.  If I just saw the hazards, I would not take the foggy path.  But because I rely upon a heavenly Father to help me navigate through the unclear moments, I can trust that there is beauty in the midst of the trial. HE does make all things according to HIS beautiful plan.  I need to see HIS perspective on a moment-by-moment basis and understand that HIS divine vision far surpasses my human vision.

Of course, lastly with these last few seconds, I also remember a the beauty I see in my daughter, who is growing according to a plan as well.  Emotionally, physically, mentally, and spiritually.  I am blessed to see God’s beautiful plan for her in the midst of my imperfect motherhood.

It’s Summer…Time to catch up and reflect

PSALM 25

To You, O Lord, I lift up my soul

Make me know Your ways, O Lord

Teach me Your paths

Lead me to Your truth, and teach me

I hate that I am never able to buckle down during the school year and continue blogging.  Many of you who read are friends and family who are are separated from me by distance, and some of us are just separated by life itself.  But I always want to take opportunities to share what is happening in my life, physically, emotionally, and spiritually since I do not get to share with many of you on a regular basis.  So, my hope is to give you some insight into what is happening in my personal and professional life  (some of these posts will be at JJ&A Simonds’s Blog) and my spiritual journey from the past year will show up here.  I have many different areas to reflect on as God has used numerous people, places, and events to bring growth in my life.  IT IS COMPLETELY OVERWHELMING AND EXCITING!!!!!

One of the strongest lessons I have learned over the past year as I was loaded down with college work, teaching preparation, role as wife and mother, and just plain getting up each day, was truth found in Psalm 5:11.  “But let everyone who trusts you be happy; let them sing glad songs forever.  Protect those that love you and who are happy because of you.”  I struggled with this often, allowing my joy and peace and song to be determined by the number of circumstances that overwhelmed me on any given day  – the weather, my job, the amount of sleep I had, or the deadlines in front of me.  My joy and peace must START with a growing, constant relationship with Christ.  Romans 15:4 “For whatever was written in former days was written for our instruction, that through endurance and through the encouragement of the Scriptures WE MIGHT HAVE HOPE”

This has been most evident in the past month as I took on a summer school teaching position in a public school in Norco.  Each day brought a variety of challenges as I faced 55 students who had little to no desire to learn and every desire to participate in “anti-learning.”  I committed each day to the Lord during this month, setting aside extra time, on purpose, to seek God early and constantly throughout the day; and, although, I am not eager to experience this last 4 weeks ever again in my life, I grew in a constant growing relationship with my heavenly Father.  I learned humility and complete dependence, on sometimes a second-by-second basis.

THAT WAS UTTERLY AMAZING!

STOP. BREATHE. PRAY. Pour it out to the Lord

Hope that the truth of Scripture can encourage you in whatever overwhelms you today

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