Tuesday, August 7, 2012

being stripped for Jesus

Well, here I am. I have been a little crazy lately and forgot about the blog. Maybe sometimes the journey gets a little bit busy that I forget to document it, which is fine except when life gets busy with all the works of what the Lord has and one forgets about faith. Faith is, after all, the substance of things hoped for and the evidence of things not seen. This may or may not be a little lesson the Lord has been teaching me=)  Aahummm…(clears throat dramatically)    

Ryan and I have been in an extremely fun(I say fun in really wanting to use a different word but for the sake of offending less will say fun with a hint of sarcasm)season. The Lord has been stripping us of ourselves. It seems as if He is continually doing this in our lives. You’d think we’d be butt bum naked by now with all this stripping of ourselves but no the Lord keeps pull pull pulling at the crud we’ve gotten hidden in our hearts. It sucks, it really does, but it is so good and (might I add) necessary.   Of recently in one instance of when I was praying/whining  to the Lord about all these ‘needs’ that we have that we hadn’t received an answer to yet, the Lord gently but sternly reminded me that I don’t ‘need’ anything but Him. What?!?! But what about the dog food, Lord, or the water bill or my integrity or or or ?!?! And again I hear, “All you need is me.” WOW, what a bold and confounding thought. I could easily spout this for years but I have never had to have faith in Him for myself in this way. All we really really really need is Jesus, our King, Savior and Lord over all. I mean If God is the one who made us, isn’t He capable of sustaining our bodies AND our lives. In case you are wondering, YES, YES HE IS! Amen to that!  

In Another such instance in this season I was again praying/whining to God but this time it was more of a ‘Why don’t you love me God? Why are you taking all this stuff from me? Aren’t you hearing what’s going on?’ type prayer. I mean, I was really feeling sorry for myself and making myself some sort of a martyr.  But then I again heard the Savior gently say to me, “I don’t need or want any of this stuff that I have taken from you or holding back on giving. I want your heart.” The Lord wasn’t taking this stuff or putting us in this place because He wanted us to not have it or wanted us to be broken, He just wants our hearts. HE loves us and desires us to desire Him above all riches or wealth or fame. He was literally stripping us of things that we had placed before Him, whether they be works, stuff or even just pride. It is so easy to make ourselves little secret idols in our lives. Our hearts can be so deceived by this age that we can sometimes not even know they are there. That is what the Lord was/is doing to us. He is teaching us to have total dependence on Him which brings independence in Him. We should as believers desire this! I’m not gonna lie, it sucks like no other a lot of the time but it is good, so good.  See the Lord knew my heart, He knew because He is God that I could say I had faith but I didn’t believe it in my heart. (man looks on the outward appearance but the Lord looks on the heart of man)I was walking in the works and claiming my faith but really in my heart I was faking it. I was relying on my own goodness and faith in money or things and not Him. He didn’t put us in this season to punish us; He put us in this season because HE loves us and desires all our hearts not just part or most of them but ALL of them.  I feel like I am a broken record sometimes but maybe it just takes lots of repeating with me. Lol

Wondering if you have any areas where it is easy to have faith without works or works without faith but not both. James will tell you that it doesn’t work like that. May we all be stripping for Jesus! (Metaphorically not literally=)

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Ok, it has been forever since I have been on here. I am one busy lady. Elijah is everywhere! He is just the cutest little thing and I love him so much. He is loved VERY much, maybe too much by his sisters.  It amazes me how different boys are from girls. He loves playing with cars, balls, banging his head on things and eating dirt. He’s very very spoiled and I can’t seem to help it.=)

The girls are stupendous. They are getting so big and are such little blessing carriers. I love the little moments when I can see fruit to the shepherding we have done in them, yet there is so much to do=). Such a great responsibility it is to be a parent. I’m learning to lay down every worldy desire and view and truly go after the heart of my children. I want what God wants for them and don’t want to add any earthly desire or secular view to that. I truly believe that if the only thing I ever produce in them is hearts that are passionately going after the Lord than I will in fact have succeeded, that I in truth have fulfilled my calling as a parent. I’m still growing and learning in this and know that it is such a work in progress in my heart as well. But with much prayer and patience from our Savior we press on looking for our Savior and the prize of His high calling. Amen.

Ryan is just as handsome as ever. Our love for each other has grown and been thru so many stages that it is impossible to see where we are without truly knowing our Savior’s grace is what has gotten us here. It will be our 5 year anniversary coming in June and we are just thrilled and shocked at how fast it seems to have passed. He is my love and I am his. (I felt bad for bragging on the kids and not including the hubs=) xoxox

Here is one little ol picture from Alaska..more to come
Here is a list of ‘first’ that’s been going on….

I got to mow our very own yard and oddly enough, i love it!

Elijah has gotten not 1 but 7 teeth

Eli has tentatively taken his firsts steps (he’s still not sure if he is in to this walking stuff))

WE LOVE LOVE LOVE having a yard!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!<--yes that many explanation points is necessary, thank you very much.

We went to Alaska and fell in love with it and our family from there.
(quick little bio. I am just so in love with our Savior and how His kingdom has been set up and reigns. It was so awesome meeting all this family that I haven’t ever met before but instantly feeling the bond that doesn’t come from blood or family trees  but comes from being Children of the Lord. This is even stronger than any bond that comes from our blood, for we are indeed bonded by Christ redeeming blood and this is the heritage that will never die.)

I flew for the first time! (Mind you, with a 3, 2 and 10 month old)

We got a kitty, his name is Lisa. (Emma named him)

Ryan started his own business to give him the freedom to follow the Lord’s call and have freedom to  be more involved in ministry.

Took Emma and Abigail to the dentist. No cavities!!! This was a big relief since Emma has been able to master the fridge since she was 1 and we have found evidence many times of middle of the night snacks=/

I now have a four year old!!! Yikes!!

I’m sure there are lots more but that is all that I can think of at the moment. So there it is. I will see if I can scrounge up some picks to upload. We have some amazing pictures from Alaska! All creation speaks of God’s glory but Alaska screams it!

 The Lord has been teaching and growing his kingdom in our hearts of late. When we left for Alaska it was still winter here but when we returned new life was growing everywhere. I feel like this is the season we are in spiritually as well. That this is the season for new life and any old or dead branches that are not life giving must be cut off or pruned. Don’t we want this though?!  We want to be life giving and for that spring to never go dry. I want to die to myself, I don’t want to be content just getting by or to have roots of any darkness to be hidden in my life. I want to be fully surrendered to my King, to lay down this life and all the riches and value and American dreams and give myself to Him. After all, all this stuff will burn someday. That nice car, picket fence, career and status quo will not appeal to the King if it is not His will. I want to have eyes only for Him and I suck at this a lot but am learning to have faith for the day. To be obedient to as much is given.  I want to have His light shine in any darkness in my heart. I cry thy kingdom COME, THY WILL BE DONE!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012


So this is what has happened, I started this blog because the Lord told me too. If you reference my very first post it says so. I though, in my busyness and craziness of life haven't been very good at updating but little tibbits here and there. I felt the need for me to outlet all the inlet that the Lord gives me(that makes sense to me, not so much sure it will to anyone else) I find that I am too busy with me 3 young charges that sometimes I forget or don't have time to update about the Lord. Wow..saying that out loud is really gutwrenching to me. 
Ok so the other night I had a dear brother to us come to me and tell me that the Lord told him that if I hadn't already that i needed to start a blog. Wow, confirmation but with that came some conviction. So i wanted to give a little update right now. I am going to start trying to post some more about what the Lord is doing along with the usual post. A lot of times these might come in letter form. I, a lot of the time will email friends or family in the body of Christ as i feel led and since i am pressed for time and want to be the best and wisest with what I have.. I might just be copying and pasting some. So they might be in odd form but heck it'll still be what the Lord has been doing in my life and well it's my blog and the Lord is the one that told me to do it so......yup that is all i needed to really say. It might get a little hairy but i love you all and MUAH!!! That was a brotherly/sisterly kiss!!

Here is a series of the most recent letters, keep in mind that i know that i am nothing apart from Him and i am just being obedient to what He is telling me...

Good day, ladies!  I have had a great week. Seems like the more I give the Lord my days the more He seems to fill them. I am praying for wisdom on when to say no and when to say yes to appointments. I believe the Lord is teaching me a lot through it all. I love my reclusiveness and I believe that the Lord is breaking me of this and calling me to be more of the “church” to his people. This week has been boo-coos better than the previous week when I was seeking to give every day to Him and would just get frustrated about people messing up MY day that I had given to the Lord.  lol. The Lord has most definitely been patient with me.
-Also I had some revelation and discipline from the Lord this weekend; I was getting frustrated and didn’t know why. The Lord revealed to me that I have given the Lord myself and am practicing and learning being a disciple but I was trying to hang on to all my leisure time or my “unwind” time to myself. My flesh was fighting me big time on this and I just couldn’t figure out why I felt “off” on Saturday. I realize this is sin and I need to give ALL my time to him, even if I am hanging out with friends, watching TV, or just dating my husband. I find that I let my guard down or sensors to the Sprit down when I am around people I feel safe with or am not being mission minded toward. I want to learn to ALWAYS walk in the Spirit, even if I am being goofy or retarded but to still learn to be in Him. I know there is a time for everything, time to laugh, morn, weep or have joy; but I still want to learn to be in Him rather than doing these things in my flesh.
I am praying that I will continue to grow in this and not be satisfied walking in the flesh EVER but only be satisfied in Him!
-letter #2
 Ryan and I just got back from our Christmas rounds. We traveled from Kansas to Oklahoma to Arkansas (Ryan said not Arkansas but his family could spit and it be in Arkansas , pretty much) and back. I just want to say boy is it good to be back.  We love our family but there is nothing like being in the body and family of Christ where we are called to be.
This trip was a special one, in that we went in purposely praying and asking the Lord for favor in “Looking for opportunities with co-workers, friends, family and others that are lost or not walking close with the Lord to introduce the supernatural presence of the Lord into their experience
So we had prayed into this and truly in our heart wanted to do this. On the way down we were praying and I had a vision that we were following a truck filled with loose hay and a really imminent sense of DANGER. I told Ryan about it but in my mind I just thought, ok, well let’s watch out for hay trucks and not follow too close behind. Lol. Such a small little mind sometimes…
So we went on to go be the Spirit in the Holidays with our families, and it sucked. We bomb shelled. The warfare was so strong that we struggled the whole time just keeping our heads above water. We came in ready and willing to let the Spirit use us and show great things in His name but we didn’t come prepared to fight. We were blind sided by the enemy’s attacks. We knew there was tons of warfare but it wasn’t until we were on our way home and feeling that we had wasted time that we begun to see what exactly it was that happened. We had come to do God’s work and follow Him but we had not come with our “boxing gloves up” as Ryan said. The enemy knew we were purposing to go after the Kingdom (even on our holiday) and he was waiting for us. When we were praying on the way home the Lord revealed that that vision of the truck with hay was a warning to us to beware. Beware of the danger ahead, not of the truck being an eminent danger but of the enemy coming to attack and snare us in his net of this world and the cares of it. The “hay” that this world holds burns away and dies.
So here is my thought…let’s be in mission together and go after the Kingdom of God, ready to make disciples of all nations, but and I mean a big BUT, we gotta ‘PUT UP OUR DUKES’ and be ready to fight the enemy and any attacks that come our way. We’re stirring up the hornets nest and it’s gonna be oh so awesomely worth it! Putting up the Dukes in the Vandenberg home
updated letter # 3 
I was thinking about that vision and how i remember thinking that the truck with the hay in it didn't seem like it would be dangerous because it wasn't like tight bound bales that could fall off and cause a wreck.. it was more like loose tide together hay by one string in the middle. Don't know if that makes sense. I just remember in the vision seeing it in the back of the truck and sensing great danger from the loosely hay. The thought as i am typing this right now is that it was so easily accessible. How the enemy places these 'so easily accessible' things in front of us all the time. I am stirred to pray that we would take off the "rose colored glasses" and have eyes in the Spirit so that we would NOT be blindsided by the enemy and the hay that so easily besets us.
-letter #4
Hey wanted to give a quick (maybe not so quick)update ….
1)      I was praying for 2012 early in the morning the other day and I heard “THE DAWN OF A NEW AGE”
And the scripture-
 2Ch 7:14  if my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land.
I know it sounds very evangelistical but it is what I heard. Excited and terrified of things to come! Amen!
2)     Yesterday morning I was praying and asking for leading on where to read and the Lord told me to read Haggai. Haggai? I know, right? But I did and the Lord, you know because he is Lord and King and Awesomeness and all, rocked it and made it perfectly prophetic in my mind and the season we are in.
Ryan could explain it all a lot better but it gave a perfect picture of the call to the church and His return. He especially highlighted Haggai 1:2-11 and also 2:20-23. We are building each other up in Him and we ARE the church. How easy it is for us to “busy” ourselves with our own house while the church of God (The people) lies in ruins.
Hag 1:2-11 "Thus says the LORD of hosts: These people say the time has not yet come to rebuild the house of the LORD." Then the word of the LORD came by the hand of Haggai the prophet, "Is it a time for you yourselves to dwell in your paneled houses, while this house lies in ruins?  Now, therefore, thus says the LORD of hosts: Consider your ways. You have sown much, and harvested little. You eat, but you never have enough; you drink, but you never have your fill. You clothe yourselves, but no one is warm. And he who earns wages does so to put them into a bag with holes. "Thus says the LORD of hosts: Consider your ways. Go up to the hills and bring wood and build the house, that I may take pleasure in it and that I may be glorified, says the LORD. You looked for much, and behold, it came to little. And when you brought it home, I blew it away. Why? declares the LORD of hosts. Because of my house that lies in ruins, while each of you busies himself with his own house. Therefore the heavens above you have withheld the dew, and the earth has withheld its produce. And I have called for a drought on the land and the hills, on the grain, the new wine, the oil, on what the ground brings forth, on man and beast, and on all their labors."
Hag 2:20-23  The word of the LORD came a second time to Haggai on the twenty-fourth day of the month, "Speak to Zerubbabel, governor of Judah , saying, I am about to shake the heavens and the earth, and to overthrow the throne of kingdoms. I am about to destroy the strength of the kingdoms of the nations, and overthrow the chariots and their riders. And the horses and their riders shall go down, every one by the sword of his brother. On that day, declares the LORD of hosts, I will take you, O Zerubbabel my servant, the son of Shealtiel, declares the LORD, and make you like a signet ring, for I have chosen you, declares the LORD of hosts."
Found conviction in our (mine particularly) laziness in the call to discipleship. Even if we are doing a good thing like cleaning house or washing dishes the Lord just spoke to me that all these things are going to burn, that perfectly clean floor or cobweb free corner is literally gonna mean squat to the Kingdom. Can I get a holler!! I wish I could use this as an excuse when I want to be lazy. Ok, just kidding, (kind of) about that last part.
3)     Brace yourself for this one…. This morning I set down to quite myself with Him and the Lord put a song or poem in my heart. I just want to say right here and now that I am telling you this with all with humility and embarrassment because I know that it was the Lord’s putting in my heart and mind. And also because I know you and a couple others have been known to write down things in acronyms and really how dorkier can it get=/.
I am the water, you’re the wine
I am the branches, you are the vine
Pour me out as a drink offering
May my life declare you’re King,
Take me and make me what you’d be,
Root out and pull any weeds
Lord, thy Kingdom come, thy will be done
All the battles and Victories won
Let me walk this earth with you inside
Grace and mercy right beside
I am the water, you are the wine
I am the branches, you are the vine
You are all we really need
Only in you are we complete
I am the water, you are the wine
Move me and place where you please
May I be your hands and feet.
Lord, I am the water and you are the wine
I am the branches you are the vine
I will partner with you my King
Whatever heaven and hell will bring
I am the water, you are the wine.
Yup, that’s it. I know it’s silly but it’s a new song in my heart. It’s ok if you laugh a little, Ryan did. =)

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Being a Disciple

I said yes to Jesus a long time ago when I was a little girl and felt His Spirit drawing me to Him. I am learning daily to be sensitive and to hear and obey that very same Spirit that brought me out of the darkness into His kingdom of marvelous light. Here recently the Lord has been burning in me the call to discipleship and reiterating what it truly is to be a disciple.

Mat 28:19-20Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age."

I somehow have overlooked this all my life, I kinda of always categorized this verse as an evangelistical movement. That once we got people saved that they were on their own. False.

-2Co 3:17 says “Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.”

We have the very Spirit that raised Christ from the dead because the Lord Is a Spirit and He is living in side us! WO! Amen! That ought to light a fire in your britches.=)   

So this is what’s going on, I am learning to be discipled and make disciples. I am having one on one intentional relationships with a few ladies that the Lord has called me too and being a mother in the faith. I am learning to be a wholehearted follower of Jesus who multiplies and giving it all for King Jesus and giving it all for the increase of HIS government and peace and Glory!! Amen. BTW, I suck it up sometimes but I am full aware that any good that comes from me is ONLY from HIM! Dying daily and saying ‘Yes’ to the call! Amen! The following letters are my 'Yes' to the call of being a disciple and being a mother in the faith in all my inadequacies He is capable.

- letter #1
Just wanted to throw my “Yes” in the pot. I knew I was going to say yes since I read the forwarded email from Ryan but I’ve been waiting before the Lord contemplating the greatness of it all.  My husband is gun ho about this discipleship stuff and I in my heart know it is right and well with my soul. Yet, I, in my flesh am terrified to death of messing things up, so to speak. I believe it is right and good and what the Father is doing with all my heart and I am ready to take the leap of faith and go “all in”. The poker term seems relevant to me. I am saying yes, yes to what may come and yes to the call of discipleship. The Lord spoke the word “intentional” to me a few months back and I feel His working in this was the preparation that my heart needed to answer the call to discipleship. I may not know all that there is to know but I desire to grow in this and I know that the Spirit inside me is more than adequate to supply me with all that I need. Ready to lay all that I have down and quit wasting time. The end.

letter #2
I in wholehearted agreement am saying Yes and Amen to the laying down of this fear and the going after CHRIST with our all. Fear in itself separates us from God, right?!?  I in my confession to you before confessed that I have been struggling with this fear as well: Fear of the unknown, fear of getting “It” wrong and just fear that I might literally have an accident speaking with such “authority” in someone’s life. You see, I am a super non-confrontational person and literally cry when someone honks their horn at me when I am driving, tells me no or gives me a mean look for any reason.  Yes, I am a sissy. But in my heart of hearts I want to be like Him and grow into everything He wants me to be. I love my Jesus, want to love Him more and I believe with all my heart in what He is doing and in the call of being a disciple.  So after replying with the last ‘Yes, I am all in!’ a greater peace filled my soul. This may get ‘hairy’ but it’s gonna be oh, so good!
Ok….rambling, this is what I wanted to email you about, the Lord led me to (purely by accident on my part but knowingly not His) 2 Corinthians 2:1-5. Which says, 1Co 2:1  And I, when I came to you, brothers, did not come proclaiming to you the testimony of God with lofty speech or wisdom. For I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified. And I was with you in weakness and in fear and much trembling, and my speech and my message were not in plausible words of wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, that your faith might not rest in the wisdom of men but in the power of God.
You see, my greatest fear has been that I in myself would not be good enough (know enough or say the right things)….but you know the thing is that I in myself wouldn’t be. But it is by the authority and power of Christ Spirit that is in me, that I CAN lay down this fear and follow after Him and His Will and His great commission. I want this, I want Him, I love Him.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Jesus, I My Cross Have Taken

I am so moved by this! Listen to it, I promise it will bless you!