Well, I meant to write about the weekend, but yesterday I was working on my book and that takes A LOT of brain power. Quite honestly, it zaps my creativity completely. And when I’m done spending hours at Coffeesmiths, the rest of life beckons me back to reality. Meaning LAUNDRY and DISHES and cooking supper for the fam.
So…weekend recap. The weekend was super busy with me attending the IF: Gathering on Friday and Saturday. This is the second year of the women’s conference and this year was just as good as last year. The actual event took place in Austin, Texas and we watched it via simulcast in Cedar Rapids (one of 1500 locations around the globe to host their own IF: Local Gathering).
There were many amazing Christian women who spoke about having faith in God to do great things for Him. Jennie Allen talked about Joshua and she reminded us that obedience starts with a step. Completely fitting for me to hear, considering I had JUST taken a step of faith in my own life (to leave the career of teaching and throw myself into the world of becoming a writer). I could go on and on about the wonderful words of encouragement and truth that Angie Smith, Jen Hatmaker, and Christine Caine (just to name a few) talked about. All of it was so encouraging and awesome.
The thing I realized was that after having an awesome weekend and all, it wasn’t just this IF: Gathering weekend that rejuvenates me. It’s what happens AFTER the weekend. Last year after having this event for the first time, they told us they’d be starting an on-line Bible reading website. IF: Equip.com AND THIS, my friends, is what has been life changing to me. Sign up at IF: Equip.com to receive their daily emails that they send out Monday through Friday. IF: Equip is a website where we work on reading through books of the Bible together. At a slow pace. A pace where you are able to process and understand and really learn more about God.
Since last February, I believe we’ve read through John, Galatians, Acts, Genesis, and now part of Numbers and Joshua. You all. It has been just what I’ve needed. See, I used to try and read the Bible, but where does one begin?? I’d open up to Psalm 28 if it was the 28th day of the month because I’m intellectual like that. Or, I’d read James, but is was SO HARD to understand.
Well, at IF: Equip.com, their goal is to equip us in knowledge of the Word and they do this. They give you verses to read for that day. They post the verses on the website, but I prefer to take out my own Bible and mark it up with highlighters, pens, etc…After reading the verses for that day, you can watch a two minute video of two Christian women who discuss what they got out of the Bible verses for that day. Then, you can read through other people’s comments to gain even further insight, if you’d like. I know I’ve talked about this website before, but THIS is what has made me learn more about God’s Will for my life and understand that the Bible IS relevant to today.
It’s the day to day Bible reading and spending time praying and just plain talking to God that has strengthened my faith. I hope I’ve encouraged you to try out IF: Equip.com! I noticed that this week, they are on “hold” as they are getting ready to introduce what book of the Bible we’ll be studying next. They have some new changes and announcements that they’ll be sharing soon…I’m super excited to hear what’s in store!
And now, that brings me to today…this afternoon, the nurse called to say Nate wasn’t feeling well. I talked with him and then, spoke with the nurse again. We decided that she’d check on Nate in about half an hour and she would keep me posted if I needed to come out early and pick him up or if he could make it through the day. Welp. Ten minutes later…I got a call. Nate had thrown up in the classroom. Poor buddy! 🙁
I rushed out to pick him up and grabbed Maxim, too. On our way home, we had a sick little guy in the car holding a plastic sack (just in case). (And for the record, I’m glad we had it.) And we had one little guy plugging his nose the ENTIRE ride home, and one mama feeling awfully guilty for “trying to let him stay and see how it goes”. * Sigh…
In the middle of all the sickness and throwing up, my heart WAS warm when I heard Maxim say, “I prayed for you, Nate, when we got into the car. I prayed you’d feel better.” Friends. Those are the reasons we keep on doing what we’re doing. Reading the Bible when we’d rather watch t.v. Pray when we wonder if God is even hearing our prayers. Because if you’re a mom, you’ve got little eyes that are ALWAYS watching you. (Even if you’re not a mom…we ALL have eyes watching us.) And when we try and live out our faith, it rubs off onto our little ones and those around us. I do MANY things wrong, but reading the Word and having a close relationship with God is one thing I try to do daily. I don’t do it perfectly…it’s a constant “work in progress”. But ANY work in progress is better than no work at all. I hope I’ve encouraged you to get out a Bible or go buy one. Subscribe to the IF: Equip website. (Oh, and while you’re at it…go ahead and subscribe to my blog site, too 🙂 Just take care of two birds with one stone.) And hey, if you don’t have a B.I.B.L.E., let me know! I LOVE shopping (hahaha) and seriously, I’d be happy to buy one for you 🙂
I’ll leave you with one more comment that Maxim said when we were on our way home from school (with his nose plugged, of course)… “Mom. I like Heaven because first of all, you don’t get sick. Second of all, it’s good. And you get to pet mean animals that have big teeth (we’ve obviously talked about the lion laying down with the lamb). And fourth, there’s no danger.” That’s right, Maxim…those are some great reasons why we love Heaven!
Well, I’ll be working on nursing a sick little one back to health. And I’m sure I’ll be doing a lot of praying over these next few days. Because no one likes to be sick, get sick, and in Maxim’s case…even hear someone get sick. (He runs out of the room every time Nate gets sick.) Praying for good health to return to our household as soon as possible!!