The Status Quo Question: “What Do You Make?”


Friends, I greatly apologize for not writing a blog the past few days. This week has been extremely demanding, so I had to wait to submit my blog, and I am SO glad I did.

At work this week, I had a student whose schedule was being switched around multiple times due to scheduling issues. He and his parents are believers, and I could see the toll this was taking on their family. Of course, I took an active role in helping rectify the situation to assist them and make my new 9th grader as “at home” as possible. After a few days of many emails and phone calls, his scheduling problems were resolved. Within a day, the father had emailed the Principal stating how I was a great teacher, and the Principal wrote me a thank you note. Now, I tell you this NOT to brag or puff myself up, but to give God glory. I was just trying doing my job; I was just trying to look out for my student, and I was just trying to love him the way God desires me to! HE allowed me to make Christ’s light shine!

Then, I received an email and saw this story about teachers… I really think this is something to challenge ALL people, asking “What Do You Make?”. Please read the story below:

A Profound Answer

The dinner guests were sitting around the table discussing life.

One man, a CEO, decided to explain the problem with education. He argued, “What’s a kid going to learn from someone who decided his best option in life was to become a teacher?”

To stress his point he said to another guest; “You’re a teacher, Bonnie. Be honest. What do you make?”

Bonnie, who had a reputation for honesty and frankness replied, “You want to know what I make?” (She paused for a second, then began…)

“Well, I make kids work harder than they ever thought they could.

“I make kids sit through 40 minutes of class time when their parents can’t make them sit for 5 without an I Pod, Game Cube or movie rental.

“You want to know what I make?” (She paused again and looked at each and every person at the table)

“I make kids wonder.

“I make them question.

“I make them apologize and mean it.

“I make them have respect and take responsibility for their actions.

“I teach them to write and then I make them write. Keyboarding isn’t everything.

“I make them read, read, read.

“I make them show all their work in math. They use their God given brain, not the man-made calculator.

“I make my students from other countries learn everything they need to know about English while preserving their unique cultural identity.

“I make my classroom a place where all my students feel safe.

“Finally, I make them understand that if they use the gifts they were given, work hard, and follow their hearts, they can succeed in life.” (Bonnie paused one last time and then continued.)

“Then, when people try to judge me by what I make, with me knowing money isn’t everything, I can hold my head up high and pay no attention because they are ignorant. You want to know what I make? I MAKE A DIFFERENCE.

“What do you make Mr. CEO?”

His jaw dropped, he went silent.

Teaching is… the profession that makes all other professions possible!

I read this and got tears in my eyes because, you know what ladies, God calls us ALL to be teachers!! He tells us in Titus 2 to be teachers to our sisters in Christ, He tells us multiple times throughout the Bible to be teachers to our children (if we have them), etc. Therefore, after reading this, I wondered if we as women ask ourselves, “What do you make, _______?”

My challenge to you tonight is to ask you to analyze what you are making in your life today, this weekend, and so on. If you are making something that glorifies God, share it in the comments section and give God the glory! If you are not making something in His name, then pray and ask God to redirect your path and create opportunities for you to do so!

I look forward to hearing from all of you!


The Boy Who Wore a Bandana


Today at church I heard an amazing story I must share with you all in regard to today’s blog. I will do my best to retell it, so bear with me:

A Native American tribe would take males when they turned twelve, and the young males would be tested to see if they would be considered “real men” to the tribe. The test consisted of these boys, on the night of their birthday, being taken out after nightfall into the woods. Then, they would be laid against a tree with a bandana covering their eyes. If the young boy could successfully make it throughout the night and have the bandana taken off in the morning, they would be considered a man in the tribe.

Now, I don’t know about you all, but I highly doubt I would ever make it throughout a night in the deep, dark, woods with bears, wild boars, snakes (eesh- there’s a reason why the Devil is a serpent in the Bible), and spiders… with no means of defending myself. I would get too anxious knowing I would not be able to defend myself if an animal was coming to attack me.

Here, though is where the beauty of this story comes into play. If the boy survived the night without taking off their bandana, when they had the bandana taken off, they would see that right near them was their father, holding a spear all night watching over and protecting them in case something did come to attack them. 

I heard this story and thought to myself how this story correlates to our relationship on earth, ladies. How many times have you felt like the little boy in the bandana, feeling powerless and vulnerable to being harmed? How many times has God told you to wait and trust Him, but you have taken matters into your own hands and ripped that bandana off so you could see what God was fighting?

I think as women it can be extremely hard to trust the Lord, especially because we are called to follow and submit to our authorities, whether it be our husbands, fathers, pastors, etc. Of course, there are times where we may not see something the way our male authorities do, and at that moment, we have a choice to make: are we going to trust what God tells us and honor His Word, OR are we going to try to take matters into our own hands? I have seen many of my fellow Christian women take their bandana, and try to peak, manipulating something so they can still have partial control.

Women, we have the LORD ON OUR SIDE! He has made us perfectly, knows our past, present, and future, and He is always right! Psalm 66:9 states, “Our lives are in his hands, and he keeps our feet from stumbling.” Ladies, if we trust the Lord for our ETERNAL SALVATION, are we really not going to trust Him for: our finances, giving us the perfect husband, picking the right timing for when we should start a family, and more? Hebrews11:6 tells us that without faith it is IMPOSSIBLE to please God. Remember, everything worth having WILL COST YOU, but it’s worth it! Basically, it comes down to two things: you have faith in God, or you have faith in yourself. What are you picking to have faith in today and this week?

I would love to hear ways you are going to put your bandana on this week and trust God to protect you. Share in the comments section and tomorrow we will talk about a way we try to take control from God… with our relationship with men.

TWILIGHT LOVE… Beneficial or Detrimental?


As a high school teacher, there has been a topic that has been on the horizon for years: Twilight. Whenever a new Twilight movie comes out, the discussion becomes: “Team Edward or Team Jacob”. My husband said to me one time that if he had to be a vampire or a werewolf, he would be a vampire! America has become obsessed with vampires. Why? Vampires are continuously seductive… AND they are extremely overdramatic. Everything is over-the-top with vampires, and we, as humans, crave this type intensity and excitement in our own lives. This is why I believe Twilight is so intriguing to people.

While the plot line is intriguing, I have to say, as a believer AND A WOMAN, I struggle very very much with some of the relationships in the story…

I, however, must say I have to appreciate is self-control Edward (a main character/vampire) has toward Bella. He wants to keep her pure, he lays his life down for her, and does not keep record of her wrongs… and let’s be honest, Bella is a hot mess. As a result, I find it somewhat refreshing to see a man that is a self-sacrificing, galiant hero, rather than a weak, dumb being (which is the way many men are portrayed in TV and Movies today).

However, there is one issue with Edward. When he thinks Bella is dead, he is ready to give up his eternal being; Bella, therefore is his reason for being, and is his purpose… his idol. THIS is where I see my teenage students fall into the trap of this “Romeo and Juliet” love- they subconsciously believe that only way to be filled is through the opposite sex. Edward and Bella say things to one another like “you are my world” or “you are a drug for me”. I cannot express how my heart breaks when we, as women, believe that we will be fully satisfied by any male!!!

Women, you want to be the OPPOSITE OF BELLA! I honestly cannot stand her character because of how weak she is: her world revolves around men. In Bella’s mind, she has NO purpose but to be filled by him, and she pursues him, even when he tells her to stop doing so! THEN, on top of that, when Edward is away, she leads another man on and begs him to comfort her while she is in love with another man. 

What are these self-seeking, overdramatic actions telling women today? I believe they are telling women to chase after what they want regardless of the consequences, to seek satisfaction whether it hurts someone or not, and to lead their lives through their EMOTIONS (which is a very dangerous way to walk throughout their life). The Bible, though, tells us “Do not arouse or awaken love until it so desires” in Song of Songs8:4, and that God’s “love is better than life” (Psalm63:3). How sad is it to see women who seek to find satisfaction in something that cannot bring true life.

SO, if you are a Twilight lover, I ask you why. Yes, the plot may be intriguing and catchy, but what is the story line saying to you and how you should live? Are you supporting these messages to us as women?!?!

I would love to hear your thoughts…

When is a root strong enough to grow?


A while back, I saw a quote that was on Doug Wilson’s blog. The quote states,

“We don’t want to find ourselves in the curious position of requiring people to bear fruit before they are attached to the tree” (To a Thousand Generations, p. 96).

This quote greatly perplexed me, because I have seen many churches struggle with figuring out where someone is in their faith and how they should be serving. In the Parable of the Four Seeds in Matthew13:3-9, one can identify the struggle of people remaining strong in their walk here on earth,

“And then He told them many things using parables, saying, ‘A sower went out to sow.  And as he sowed, some seed fell by the side of the road, but the birds came and ate them up.  Other seeds fell in rocky places where there was little soil and they sprouted quickly, because there was no depth of soil.  Now, when the sun came up, they were scorched, and because they had no root, they withered away.  Other seeds fell among thorns and the thorns grew up and choked them out.  Still other seeds fell on properly prepared soil and yielded fruit – some a hundred times as much as was sown, some sixty times as much and some thirty'”.

Let’s focus on the last three seeds. If someone understands and places their trust in God, then of course, the prayer is they become the fourth seed who “produces fruit” throughout their life while still keeping God first in their life. However, the Doug Wilson (2011) quote discusses the issues people have when they are the second and third seed. When I was in Gainesville and a part of my college church, I saw a lot of people who jumped into ministry while not being fully “attached to the tree”; as a result, these people quickly burnt out and either: 1) stopped serving and left the church, or 2) fell away from the Lord. God tells us that He desires for us to have a Mary heart and fall at His feet to learn and become more like Him so we can have that strong root as our foundation. No root equals death.

We also live in America, the country that focuses deliberately on NOT having a Sabbath, working too much, having too many distractions to hear from God, and worrying rather than trusting God. This third seed, just like the second, will not bear good fruit.

Churches in North America hit a huge dilemma; if they force all people to serve right away, then the church body may not be have strong enough of a body, creating problems; if they have people only focus on their relationship with God without having any external focus, no fruit will come because nothing will be produced. AND… as women, if we are not strong in our foundation, there are MANY areas of the Bible we can misinterpret, causing severe harm to ourselves and our church.

How, then, do we know when someone’s root is strong enough to continue growing, serve, and produce the fruit God wants us to?

Find true love that endures forever!


After finding joy and contentment from identifying God’s faithful, intimate love yesterday, an amazing event happened. Like I said in yesterday’s blog, those “what if” statements I had were skewing my vision of how God is always with us, and when I finally found contentment with being solely with the Lord in any place and circumstance, He did something JUST to show how much He loved me (please note: I was ALREADY content with the Lord and His love for me… He did this SOLELY to give me more joy and love)!

Like I said yesterday, one way I received encouragement at my job in the past were verse cards from my co-workers. They encouraged me in times of frustration, and allowed me to refocus at any moment. Today, I arrived at school with an eternal joy, filled up with the Holy Spirit, knowing I could rely on His love and joy to refocus me. When I checked my mailbox, you will not believe what I found: A VERSE CARD FROM A CO-WORKER! Praise God- it was such a surprise! I love it when God does that. It states in Jeremiah 29:12-13, “you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” When I finally surrendered my nervous thoughts or fears, the verse card said to me, “That’s all I want, and when you do find joy completely in me, I will give you ABUNDANTLY MORE!”

God tells us OVER and OVER that He fights for us, and we need to be anxious for NOTHING because His love endures forever. Psalm94:18-19  reflects my silly, worrisome heart, “’My foot is slipping.’ Your unfailing love, LORD, supported me. When anxiety was great within me, your consolation brought me joy.” Allow God to bring you joy today! To close for today, like yesterday, let us rejoice (“Rejoice ALWAYS!”) that we have a God who loves us so much that He craves for intimacy and to bring us joy!

To close, I want us to do an activity that Beth Moore had me do years ago in one of her studies. Read Psalm136 below,

Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good.
            His love endures forever.
2 Give thanks to the God of gods.
            His love endures forever.
3 Give thanks to the Lord of lords:
            His love endures forever.

 4 to him who alone does great wonders,
            His love endures forever.
5 who by his understanding made the heavens,
            His love endures forever.
6 who spread out the earth upon the waters,
            His love endures forever.
7 who made the great lights—
            His love endures forever.
8 the sun to govern the day,
            His love endures forever.
9 the moon and stars to govern the night;
            His love endures forever.

 10 to him who struck down the firstborn of Egypt
            His love endures forever.
11 and brought Israel out from among them
            His love endures forever.
12 with a mighty hand and outstretched arm;
            His love endures forever.

 13 to him who divided the Red Sea[a] asunder
            His love endures forever.
14 and brought Israel through the midst of it,
            His love endures forever.
15 but swept Pharaoh and his army into the Red Sea;
            His love endures forever.

 16 to him who led his people through the wilderness;
            His love endures forever.

 17 to him who struck down great kings,
            His love endures forever.
18 and killed mighty kings—
            His love endures forever.
19 Sihon king of the Amorites
            His love endures forever.
20 and Og king of Bashan—
            His love endures forever.
21 and gave their land as an inheritance,
            His love endures forever.
22 an inheritance to his servant Israel.
            His love endures forever.

 23 He remembered us in our low estate
            His love endures forever.
24 and freed us from our enemies.
            His love endures forever.
25 He gives food to every creature.
            His love endures forever.

 26 Give thanks to the God of heaven.
            His love endures forever.

This Psalm is a beautiful illustration of how God brings us life and victory here on this earth. Tonight or tomorrow morning, I want you to make a personal version of Psalm136. What can you say God has done in your life? Rejoice and adore who He is and what purpose and joy He brings into your life!! 🙂

Let’s then share a few statements we make in the comments section. At the end of every brief phrase, add His love endures forever before moving on to another phrase. That way, we can give God all the glory for everything we have! I look forward to reading the different versions of Psalm136 we make!

“What If…?” Poisonous Thoughts


For those of you who do not know me well, I am a high school teacher, and I had my first day of school today. Every year, you have the same nervous butterflies regardless of how many years you have been teaching because you have a new group of students, and hopefully, a new start to impact those students and be a good witness.

This year, though, is especially different for me. Since teaching, I have always had Christian friends surrounding me- God was definitely taking care of me as a young teacher. This year, though, many of those friends moved into different stages of their lives, and I remained at my school, plus- I obtained a new position. As I got my classroom set up, verse cards remained displayed from my friends from the past years together (we would encourage one another throughout the year), and thoughts began creeping into my mind… “What if my new students do not like me like the past teacher?”, and “What if I am having a bad day and need some encouragement from my dear friends and I cannot ask them because they’re not here?”, etc. You all know these anxious thoughts I describe oh too well!

This is where the Devil wants us to lose our confidence in the Lord and become insecure in our abilities with Him. Remember, Matthew tells us that the Devil comes “at an opportune time” and that when we step out in leadership, we will be tested more because we can do more for His glory (and the Devil wants us to FAIL!).

When we allow our mentalities to shift into these “what if” mind clouds, we lose our focus on what our purpose is and we miss opportunities the Lord is giving us (or we do not make the most of the opportunity because we are too anxious/nervous). You know what, though? Today, I prayed that the Lord would allow me remember these key truths: I am never reason why people see God’s light, it’s His Holy Spirit; My strength is never enough to win the battles of this world- I can only overcome any obstacle if I TRUST GOD and that the power from the CROSS helps me. After praying these thoughts, I listened to the song You Have Me by Gungor (one of my absolute favorites) that reveals how loving our God is. Listen:

The words in the song resonated into my heart in a different way during my “what if” mind battle; the words, “There in the silence, you were there… always faithful, always good… you still have me, you still have my heart” allowed me to realize what I was doing wrong. I was being ANXIOUS about hearing from God through my friends. How silly! I have the Holy Spirit with me when I wake up and when I lay my head down to sleep. I knew that He was telling me that at moments of stress, sadness, or fear during my job, He would BE THERE, HAVE ME, and HAVE MY HEART!!! The Bible even asks us why we worry; it states in Matthew6:27, “Can all your worries add a single moment to your life?” proving that these “what if” thoughts are not beneficial and only lead to dissatisfaction with where we are at that moment in time.

In conclusion today, I challenge you to pray asking God to give you a heart of peace and trust in Him and His comfort. He tells us in Psalm62:8, “O my people, trust in him at all times. Pour out your heart to him, for God is our refuge.” Why do we need to be anxious when we have God on our side taking care of our days ahead?

Then, listen to this song by Gungor and repeat the words with conviction in your heart, proclaiming you can trust Him all the days of your life without anxiety, fear, or worries. Give Him your heart completely.

“You have me,

You have me,

You have my heart completely…

You still have me

You still have my heart!” -GUNGOR


Your life in SIX words…


In the literary world, it is getting increasingly popular to no longer express your heart in long autobiographies, but instead through short, concise statements like Twitter, quote books, even six-word memoirs. Rather than having a long blog today, I want us to spend our day being a little more introspective. I first heard about six-word memoirs through Modesty Writer’s Guild (a phenomenal blog!). While looking on the web, here are a few powerful six-word memoirs I have found:

“Facebook, Twitter, Goodle+. Lonelier than ever”. -Anonymous
“For sale: baby shoes, never worn”. -Ernest Hemingway
“Laying with you but sleeping alone.” -Anonymous
“Dying to myself; finding true life”. -VSH
The quote by Ernest Hemingway has resounded in my mind for over two years; my students and I had a discussion over Hemingway’s memoir (I always have them do one and present it- very powerful for any teachers out there), and many interpretations came out- the mother had a miscarriage, the baby died shortly after being born, or the couple could not have children after trying and were selling the shoes. Hemingway’s statement  is so powerful and speaks to many people in this world.
These memoirs are supposed to represent where we are at this exact moment in our lives- every word matters. If you only had six words, how would you describe where you are at in your life? What does the purpose revolve around? Would you be content with leaving that reflective memoir for people to remember you by?
I challenge you today to make a six-word memoir. Then, remember that the Lord is ALWAYS with you (during the victories and trials)- Revelation tells us the Lord has a white stone with a name on it that only we and the Lord will be able to see because He is the ONLY ONE who will ever be with us every second of every minute of every day. After making your six-word memoir, create one for where you want to be or what you want to be feeling for the rest of your life… you never know how powerful it can be (share it in the comments section if you would like to!). I hope to read some!