Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

“It is Finished” – A Message that Might Be Fitting for Holy Week

Blessed Holy Week, fellow followers of Christ Jesus. We want so much to serve you as well as we know how on this most sacred week of our annual Christian calendar. As we reflected on how best to do that, we thought about this message that I had the privilege to give at Passion City Church in Atlanta, Georgia. My good friend, Louie Giglio, had asked me to speak on John 19 which records the crucifixion of Christ. Some of you have services to attend at your churches on Friday where you will gather at the Cross through the pages of Scripture and remember once more. This message is here for anyone who may not have that opportunity, who’d like to grab her Bible, turn to the most pivotal moment in human history, and set her mind afresh on what Jesus Christ accomplished on that hill that dark afternoon.

I am almost certain that you will also have a written post for Good Friday. We at Living Proof Ministries love and appreciate you so much and pray that Christ will reveal Himself astonishingly to you throughout this weekend and particularly on Sunday as we all celebrate the most beautiful words possible: “He is risen!”

 

With tremendous affection,

Beth

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Siesta Scripture Memory Team 2015: Verse 7!

Hey, you Scripture memory friends! We have made it all the way to verse 7! I felt like doing another little video for you this time around. It just feels warmer to me this way even if a written post is far more orderly and includes far less rambling. These videos are rough and unpolished but they are from the heart. I’m so proud of your hard work and your perseverance. Often when I read through your entries, I wonder if I’m getting a little clue about some of your circumstances and challenges. I don’t miss how many of you are memorizing Scriptures that encourage you to forgive someone. I am also deeply moved as I see many memorize Scriptures that remind you that YOU are forgiven and that you have been completely cleansed and that the power of Christ’s cross extends to YOU. Other times I smile seeing countless women selecting verses to help them keep their mouths shut in situations. Still other times I sense through your selections how very much you want to love people the way Christ has called you to love. AND IT’S HARD.

Maybe I’m reading too much into all of this. Maybe what’s resonating with me about your selections is that I myself am desperate for them. I have people to forgive. I need to believe and know without a doubt that I am completely forgiven and cleansed. I absolutely need to shut my mouth more often. And I want to love the way Christ has called me to love and, yes, sometimes it is the hardest thing on earth for me.

Nothing is like the Word of God. He leaves nothing out.

Ok, Girls! I am continuing a segment of Ephesians 3 so here is my entry this time around:

 

Beth Moore, Houston. “That according to the riches of His glory He may grant you to be strengthened with power through His Spirit in your inner being.” Ephesians 3:16 ESV

 

I sure love all of you and I am blessed beyond words to serve you! Press on and keep up your memory work!

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Our Coworker Nancy’s Story: A Faithful God, A Profusely Expensive Testimony

Hey, everybody. I so often wish you could meet the stellar women I get to serve alongside at Living Proof, especially because they serve this blog community every workday in one way or another. They are such incredible women of God and slack-jawing graces to this former pit-dweller. I want you to meet one of them today and hear her very moving story. If you’ve ever mailed a letter to Living Proof, in all likelihood, you have been touched by her. Nancy Mattingly is one of the best friends I have in this world. We have known one another for thirty years, our paths crossing often then ultimately converging in ministry. When we were very young moms, she’d come to my home once a month for a prayer breakfast with other women just like us and we’d sit cross-legged on that den floor, our Bibles wide-open, and seek Jesus with everything we had. We are both fitness junkies. She bikes and runs. I wear out an elliptical and hike. We’re both teachers by trade and by calling. We love music and we love it loud.

 

Nancy heads up correspondence at Living Proof Ministries. She heads it up because I hand-chose her. And I did so because she is wise and warm and wonderful and witty and compassionate and strong and loving. You cannot know her and miss being touched by her. The gift she has been to me is beyond estimation. My heart fell into my feet in ministry when I realized that the letters and needs filling up our LPM mailbox were more than one person could manage. I wanted to respond personally to the women who wrote in. I wanted them to know I’d heard their stories. I wanted to pray for them in response letters and give them verses that might resonate with their circumstances and challenges. I came to a point that I flat-out could not keep up with the correspondence and still write and teach Bible studies. I needed someone I could trust to the bone to head up that crucial position here at LPM.

 

And that was Nancy. She has cried with you, laughed with you, written you, prayed for you, pored over every word you’ve mailed to this address, and shared many of your stories with me and with our staff. I love her so much. And you would love her, too. We have been through so much together as a ministry staff. We rejoice together and weep together, laugh till our sides split together and bawl our eyes out together. We have each had several turns being the one who needed rallying around the most. We’ve stood by one another through such a variety of things that I wouldn’t know where to stop a list of categories. But we, as a staff of very close friends, have never been through anything harder than the story you are about to hear. I can hardly type these words to you without crying. I knew that one day – and sooner than later – Nancy would share this story because I know the woman of God she is. I knew God would be outrageously glorified. I knew that this would turn back on the devil and make him sorry he messed with her and her family. And so it begins.

 

Please meet one of the dearest people on earth to me and to all of us here at Living Proof. This is our friend, Nancy. She has a story to tell you because we at this ministry have not had the luxury of naiveté. We have hurt. And we know that you have hurt. And, because of Jesus, we have hope. And we want you to have hope. We believe that our stories and journeys have been entrusted to us so that we can do what we’ve been called to do: serve women. Serve you. So, today, this is how we will do it.

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From Nancy:

Late in 2013, I was compelled to find a particular sign I’d seen a while back. I really didn’t understand why, but just knew I wanted it for our family. I needed it. It simply said “it is well with my soul”. I bought the very last one the store had, brought it home, placed it on the hearth, and announced to my people, “this is our word for 2014.”

Little did I know how much I would need that reminder.

Every day.

January 28th, 2014 was a day that we will never forget, getting the news that our beloved firstborn son had taken his own life. And just like that, he was gone. And we had so many questions that will not be answered this side of heaven.

 

I can’t even put into words what shock we were in. Disbelief. Pain. My husband and I were at home that day, while all of Houston was shut down for an “ice storm” that never really came to fruition. Our Living Proof Tuesday night Bible study was cancelled for that evening.  Otherwise, I would have been right there serving with my coworkers. Looking back on it, the cancellation was such a personal gift from Jesus because it put me home with my man where we received the news together. We had just finished some chicken and wild rice soup, and were watching a movie.

The doorbell rings, and I go to answer it.

Two policemen were at our door asking for my husband. (You would typically think something terrible immediately, seeing police at your door, however I didn’t, as we had been dealing with the police in the last month over a stolen bicycle. So, for some reason, I thought it had to do with the bike, and cheerily welcomed them in.) It was then that they told us the devastating news of Kyle.

No words.

“If Your revelation hadn’t delighted me so, I would have given up when the hard times came.” Psalm 119:92, The Message

 

Shock can begin immediately and with a vengeance. And it did. We both had such severe issues, but tried to listen to all the police were telling us. Once they left, I remember that we sat on the couch, held hands, and my very strong husband prayed. Oh, how we needed Jesus! In that moment, and in the days to come….

And He was there.

He supernaturally held us through the longest of days and nights.

Through the terrible phone calls to our other children, all living out of town.

Through arranging international travel to get our daughter home from Hong Kong where she had moved just 2 weeks earlier to nanny some children of special missionary friends.

Through the pacing and the arranging and the decisions and the deep desire to go to bed. Then we’d finally get there only to lay there, unable to sleep.

But God Was There.

Whatever kind of believer you are before tragedy happens, you get to decide again after the tragedy: do I believe? And the answer for me was absolutely yes. I had nowhere else to go but my Jesus.

“This I know: God is for me.” Psalm 56:9

People are interesting, especially in the ways they process crises. Some trickled into our home as the news spread. Even in the midst of the first few hours of our new reality, we were able to find humor. And since humor is best shared, I had a dear, beloved life-long friend with whom to share it. We got bent-over tickled over one specific incident, and I realized even then that it was just another grace gift from the Lord. It was a brief respite from the overwhelming grief.

And it set the tone of the year, where we would dance: between the waves of deepest grief, and the pockets of joy.

I also found that, throughout my grief, I had to balance my sadness and loss, my overwhelming sense of failure as a mother, and my fear and anxiety for my family

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the obvious care and tending the Lord was doing, the gratitude I had in all that He had given us through our children, and especially through Kyle himself.

I thanked Him for the gift of 32 years with my son. I was grateful, so grateful, for the outlandish gifts my other children were to me. I marveled at this man I had been married to for 34 years and at his ability to articulate all that we were going through. And, I was actually able to see that my son, my beautiful son, was free from what had tormented him.

I could certainly praise my Jesus for that.

Oh, but the loss! And the sheer gut-wrenching longing that he would have received the help so eagerly offered him instead of deciding to be finished…

“I will offer You a sacrifice of thanksgiving and will worship the Lord.” Psalm 116:17

Can I tell you a bit about my son?

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He was a delight from his first moments of breath on this planet. He was full of energy, and when I say “full”, I mean over-the-top action all the time. He took me out of my comfort zone in those first years with his outgoing personality and zest for life. He’d talk to every person we passed during our days of doing life together while I would tend to be quieter and shyer. Oh, but not Kyle. He ran hard after everything that delighted him. And made some noise doing it. He had such a generous heart and an impish grin that really did let you know trouble was coming. School became a mix of many victories and many areas to work on. Though he was definitely high maintenance, he was also highly entertaining. And the joy, oh mercy, the joy! We knew a full measure of joy with this son of ours, and at the same time, we knew our desperate need of Jesus, too.

 

That truly became our story later in his adult years. While, on the one hand, we watched God give him such beautiful opportunities to share his love of the outdoors with others, we also saw such a need for Jesus to rescue him from his depression and sadness in his last several years. Kyle was a mountain man… a very successful mountain guide, ice climber, avalanche educator, and, in the slower months and on the side, he did rope-access work on those huge windmills. He was well-respected in every capacity.

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Gosh, even today, the loss can overwhelm me…

“For He Himself is our peace.” Ephesians 2:14

Early on in the loss of Kyle, I made a deliberate decision not to hide. To be honest, I truly wanted to hide but even more so I wanted to see God glorified through some measure of this grief. So, I would post a picture or two on various social medias and share some words. I would do anything to keep some other mother from this kind of devastation but I don’t begin to know how.  What I can do, however, is just trust God to work through my willingness to share. He alone can make anything good out of this story. I realized early on in our loss, that as hard as my husband and I worked to help Kyle – to encourage him and guide him and certainly to love him – that he was an adult and made his own decisions.

 

While I never, ever would have chosen this story for my precious family, I do get to choose what I do with it. And I get to praise my Jesus. I get to believe Him, even if I’m overwhelmingly sad, grieving, or undone. Bless His holy name.

 

Thank you for understanding that many aspects of our experience, we simply think are too sacred, too private for sharing or discussing. But what I can say is this: if someone you love is isolating himself/herself, do everything in your power to reach out to the person and pull him/her back into a safe circle of loved ones. I have seen the damage done by the enemy when he draws people in crisis away from their safe place, their safe people. Of course, we did do everything we knew to do in our own circumstance. Just looking back, I so wish I could have changed this outcome.
*May I just enter a note here to those of you who are personally dealing with deep depression, mental illness, chaos in your home or a lack of hope for any reason? Please seek help. And continue to get it. Don’t isolate yourself. Believe those who love you when they tell you how valuable and wonderful you are and how much you have to offer. Listen to them and not just to your own thoughts. Trust Jesus. Make plans for tomorrow. Dare to hope.

Do. Not. Do. This. Devastation.To. Your. People.

God has a plan. For you. And it’s good.

“I say: the Lord is my portion, therefore I will put my hope in Him.” Lamentations 3:24

 

I really cannot tell my story without the obvious truth that without God, Jesus, and His Word, I would have been a literal mess. (Of course many days I was, and am, still a mess, even with Him.) And I can’t talk about my faith walk without telling you that Beth and I have been friends for 30 years, and truly, no one on this planet has helped me in my faith journey more than she has. She truly has taught me how to do life as a Christ-follower. By watching her, studying with her, living my life around her life, I have gleaned such treasures of the kingdom. And I am so grateful. (Understatement of the year) Her hard pursuit of Christ, and her lavish love of her Savior have encouraged me, and strengthened me, and I am quite sure compelled me to want the same. My love of Jesus, and people, is spurred on by hers. And if I said thank you every day for the rest of my life, it would not be enough. (I know many of you feel the same way about her and what she has meant to your faith life.) Beth, thank you. Thank you, thank you, thank you! My heart beats even stronger for Jesus because of you, and I cannot imagine my life without Him, or you. Thank you for caring so deeply for our loss, and hurt. And thank you so much for letting me tell a bit of our story here. What a grace gift. We do not want this to be our story, but since it is, we want the Lord to receive all the glory for what He’s done. For Who He is. Thank you for the space to do just that.

 

If I may, and with Beth’s complete support and agreement, I just want to address a thought or misconception I have heard from time to time: that, if you are in ministry like Beth is, or work with someone as wonderful as my coworkers, you have no problems. Or, at least, that is what some people have suggested throughout the years. Often people ask how wonderful it is to work here. Don’t get me wrong, it truly is. These people at Living Proof Ministries are my family and I dearly love each and every one. We have had so many blasts together. However, being in full-time ministry certainly does not negate any troubles coming your way. All of us here at Living Proof have them. We have heartbreaks and disappointments and burdens just like you do. Ministry does not add a bonus protective-coating on you and your family. It does not mean that you or your loved ones won’t go through the pit of deep despair. I wish it meant that you won’t ever live out your worst nightmare, but it doesn’t. P R A Y for your Bible teachers, your church leaders, your pastors, your ministry teams, worship leaders! Honestly, when you think of them, pray for them! I know it would mean so much to them. You have no idea what they may be suffering privately.

 “On the day I called, You answered me; You increased strength within me.” Psalm 138:3

I still have so many questions, so few answers…..yet, I can rest in what I do know, what I am sure of:
*God is faithful. He has been in the past, and He will be in the future. So that must mean He is faithful today as well. With Him, I can do today.
*God has been so very near to us. (And I pray the same for you and your family, no matter what you are going through, that His presence with you will be palpable.) And, at times, when I do not feel Him near?  I know without a doubt that He’s still here with me.
*God’s Word still remains. And is for us in every circumstance. Not one Scripture fell off the page. It stands secure.
*God has never left us nor forsaken us. And I have found that, no matter what, I get to trust Him.

“Give the Lord the glory due His name; worship the Lord in the splendor of His holiness.” Psalm 29:2

 

Looking back, I can’t really believe we have survived. Truthfully, I’m not sure how we did, except Jesus. (Side note here: the Body of Christ – and community –  is a beautiful thing, especially in times of loss and devastation. Our people came from far and wide to help us, support us, and just grieve with us. Our deepest thanks to each and every person who supported us and prayed for us in these challenging times, sent cards, brought food, texted, emailed, phoned…)

 

We still miss our son every day. Every Single Day. Some days the pain is too deep for words. But our perspective now is more eternal than ever before. In our ordinary lives, we have this glimpse of eternity, with our son waiting on the other side, and we long for that. And we long for Him: our Jesus. And He is the Only One to satisfy that longing. Let Him do that for you today.

 

“for You are their magnificent strength…” Psalm 89:17

 

Thank you for listening. We at LPM care so very much for each of you and truly want to see you find full freedom and victory in Jesus. No matter what comes your way, choose Him. He is so very faithful.

 

With Love,

Nancy

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A Giveaway! A new look for “Looking Up”!

CONGRATULATIONS WINNERS!
You will be receiving a confirmation from LPM. Please reply back with your mailing address.

1. Cheryl Brownell
2. Jessica Lowe
3. Selina ? – #702
4. Chris Bradbury
5. Danielle Greenwald
6. Jenny Still
7. Felicia G.
8. Danielle Mower
9. Christina Moore
10. Linda Foust
11. Sheila (Myers?) – #3143
12. Elizabeth Schmidt
13. Olive Gaines
14. Kendra Stearman
15. Maureen (Buckley?) -#508
16. Stephanie ? – #600
17. Kim Joyce
18. Sharon (Stockham?) – #2753
19. Sharon Appel
20. Cindy Kelly

We had such a great response, we decided to pull some additional winners!!
21. Sarah Bumgardner
22. Hannah Bartlett
23. Jamie Blair
24. Josephine M. Kerley
25. Monica Hampton Cooper

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

It’s Spring Break time around here, so we thought it would be the perfect time for a giveaway!

Looking Up has an updated look, and we have 20 copies we would love to share with you.  Looking Up is a devotional book adapted from Beth’s book “Get Out Of That Pit”.

 

If you want a chance to win, just leave your comment: “Yes!” (One comment per person, please.)

Comments will close Monday, March 23rd at 9am (CST).  We’ll update the post soon after with winners’ names. We hope your name is drawn!

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Siesta Scripture Memory Team 2015: Verse 6!

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Greetings, sweet Siestas. It is with the largest lump in my throat imaginable that I introduce myself and share my heart with you, a most tender and humble heart as I type these words. I’m Melanie Toups, and my husband, Jerry, and I live in Bridge City, Texas. Our son and daughter-in-law, Jerrad and Cody Toups, live in Houston and are the parents of our darling grandbaby, Cally. Our daughter and her husband, Jacqueline and Josh Elliff, live in Arlington. Besides my salvation, my sweet Father has loved me most well in the lives of my children. Most well. Jerry and I worship at First Baptist Orange; I serve as principal of Kountze Elementary School and also teach at Lamar University’s junior college, LIT, in the evenings. Facilitating ladies’ Bible studies, primarily Beth’s studies, for the past 10 years is one of my greatest joys.

 

In 2009, I began memorizing Scripture through this very blog and have continued for six years. I’ll never be able to fully express the profound, life-changing impact this has over me every single day. I love His Word like no other love in my life. Last fall I began asking Him with much anticipation, “Father, what do You have for us in year seven?!”

 

Our Connection Group recently began “Time of Your Life” by Andy Stanley, and during the first session, I whispered to a friend that Psalm 90:12 would be my first memory verse in 2015:

 

So teach us to number our days, that we may present to You a heart of wisdom. – Psalm 90:12 (NASB)

 

This verse challenges me greatly in how I redeem the time He gives me. Andy discusses the cumulative value of investing small amounts of time in things of worth over a long period of time. (My first thought was the immeasurable worth of Scripture memorization.) I’d been asking for His guidance in laying aside a current commitment to better serve Him, and this verse took my breath away. When I dug deeper into ‘wisdom’ (Hebrew ‘chokmah’) in my Bible’s lexical aids, I found it specifically refers to ‘prudence’ in this passage. Prudence – wise in handling matters; skill and good judgment in the use of resources. Yes. Psalm 90:12 is for me.

 

This verse also speaks to me in seasons of wait. While we believe Him to be faithful as we await answered prayers for loved ones, relationships, jobs, etc., let’s serve Him and intentionally seek daily glimpses of His glory in the wait. A favorite set of commentaries by Charles Spurgeon, “Treasury of David”, contains this statement regarding my verse, ‘When the heart seeketh, it findeth, as though it were brought unto her, like Abraham’s ram.’ Ahh. Breathtaking. This is for me.

 

I’m in such need of His loving-kindness. Each morning, my knees hit the bedroom carpet for my Manna time (‘quiet time’ – necessary, daily nourishment from Him) and then again knees on the floor behind my office desk, desperate to live under His authority to have His anointing over whatever the day holds. (Warning: you may look like a bobble-head doll popping up if someone opens your office door without knocking. Smile!) But what carries me throughout each day is His Word, verses memorized to fill my thoughts and speak aloud while walking the halls of my campus or the hallway of my home. And on stressful days when my thoughts seem to continually cycle ‘grumble/confess/repeat’, I beg Him to please ‘work in me to will and to ACT according to His good purpose’ (from Philippians 2:13, emphasis mine).

 

So, let’s do this! Your heart will soar at His faithfulness! He will use you to encourage coworkers and family with verses penned to notepads and text messages. Learn verses with friends (in 2014 I invited Facebook friends to join a group and was overwhelmed at the response); recite them during your morning commute. My work commute is 90 miles roundtrip, and my spiral is my copilot. Recently I spoke at a local ladies’ retreat and discussed Scripture memorization. Today I saw the pastor of one of the participating churches, and he was excited to share the difference Scripture memory is already making in his congregation. Applause for Him alone! He. is. most. worthy.

 

Thank you, precious Beth, for your incredible generosity in allowing me to honor Him through your ministry. I love Him more because of your obedience to His calling. I love you.

So excited to read YOUR verses, my friends!

 

P.S. In case you missed it, we have a new SSMT app!!  Check it out here: SSMT App Launch

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You Asked For It, You Got It! SSMT App Launch (optional)

If you are one of the Siestas who asked for an SSMT app, we are so happy to announce it is launching today! Yay!   Although it has broader features that connect to the LPM website, today we will focus on the SSMT features of this app.   It is completely optional, but here’s how to get it, and what it does:

1.  DOWNLOAD THE APP: Whether you are on an Apple, Android, or Windows device, go to where you download apps and search for “SSMT 2015″, developed by Subsplash.  Once downloaded, this is the home screen you will see:
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Notice the bottom icon tray that we are on the “SSMT 2015″ portion, and the top 2 related tabs are: SSMT Post & SSMT Event.  SSMT Event is information about our Celebration on 1/16/16. (More details to come.)

2.  OPTIONAL:
* Bible Gateway.com – optional resource for searching scripture in many different translations.
* Save verses to the Notes section on Bible Gateway. [Many of your devices have a “Notes” app to which you also can save your verses.]

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3.  SUBMIT YOUR VERSE FROM THE APP TO THE LPM BLOG:
* Select date. (Verse 4 in the example below)
* Select “Link”. (Links you to the Blog.)
* Scroll to the very bottom of the page where you submit your verse in a comment.
Watch” – to view video
Notes”to just read the post

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4. SUBMIT VERSE FROM APP TO FACEBOOK:
* Select “Connect” from the bottom icon tray
* Select “Facebook” and leave your comment

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That’s it!  Feel free to click around and see other fun features on the app.  Enjoy!

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LPL Atlantic City, NJ – Tickets for you and a friend!

Hi Ladies,
Happy Monday to each of you from LPM!  We hope you are beginning this new week refreshed and full of faith!

This weekend we are so thrilled to take Living Proof LIVE to Atlantic City, NJ!  Raise your hand if you are planning on going?!  Please know that all of us at Living Proof will be praying for you and we can’t wait to see and hear all that the Lord does!

Last year Beth shared a new initiative for LPL ticket giveaways.  (You can read about it here.) In keeping with this new initiative, we have some tickets set aside and available for you to give to some friends you might want to invite to an LPL event. Your friend might not even attend church, or know Jesus as Savior;  they might be new to faith, or simply less-discipled in the Word. Listen, if the Lord puts someone on your heart that might be interested and would be blessed by attending, by all means call them up and invite them. You never know what kind of investment you’re making in their life!

If you have someone that wants to attend with you, or if you stumbled across this blog and don’t know why, just call and ask for Kimberly here at the ministry and she will get you set up: 1-888-700-1999. (Not 800.)

Oh, that they would taste and see that Jesus is good; that they would be willing to enter in to hear that Jesus DOES exist, HE IS the Savior, and He is LIFE!  If while inviting a friend you need a ticket yourself, we want to gift a ticket to you, also.

You are dear to us.

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Siesta Scripture Memory Team 2015: Verse 5!

Hi everybody!  I decided to cheer you on in video this time to put some extra heart in it. I’m so proud of all of you!

 

Here’s my verse:

Beth Moore, Houston, “For this reason I bow my knees before the Father.” Eph 3:14 ESV

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LPL Seattle Recap!

Happy Monday, friends!
Beth is so happy to have kicked off the 18th season of Living Proof LIVE this weekend in the Seattle suburb of Redmond!  Thank you David Lowe for the recap.

Enjoy!

Seattle Living Proof Live 2015 from LifeWay Women on Vimeo.

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Siesta Scripture Memory Team 2015: Verse 4!

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Hi Siestas! It is such a joy to be able to talk to you! My name is Sherry McClure and I just love this community so very much. I live in the suburbs of Houston, Texas, and I work here at Living Proof Ministries. One of my responsibilities right now at LPM is to help moderate your comments and it brings me such delight. Thank you for letting me be a part of your life in that way. All of you have so much to offer and I love getting to know you through your comments here! I also have the joy of tending to many of you through Facebook and I love y’all so incredibly much.

A little bit about me: I have been here at LPM for just over 11 years and have had the opportunity to do many things here! I started working at LPM when I had only been married for 2 years and we didn’t have children at the time. As I have grown and changed, my responsibilities at LPM have changed as well. I have been married for 13 years to David and we have two boys –Sam (9) and Jacob (7). We have a lot of fun together, but life with boys is loud, fast, and sometimes messy.   I also have the privilege of serving my home church in our women’s ministry. Life is full and fun! Some of the things that I enjoy most in this life are playing with my kids, being outside, shopping, cooking, and most of all, studying God’s word. His Word is the absolute thrill of my life. The Lord has recently breathed a new passion for His word into my soul and it is what I wake up for everyday…to see the Lord in His Word.   He is the love of my life.

 

1 Samuel 12:24 (ESV)

“Only fear the Lord and serve him faithfully with all your heart. For consider what great things he has done for you.”

 

This is one of the verses that the Lord has given me to focus on throughout the entire year. He broke it down for me like this:

Only fear the Lord: I am not to fear failure. I am not to fear what someone may think. I am not to fear the enemy. I am not to fear people I think are my enemies. I am not to fear things I imagine. I am not to fear man. My only fear should be of the Lord. There is safety in fearing Him.

 

Serve him faithfully: I am to be faithful in the ways that He has given me to serve. I am to work in excellence and do everything unto Him.

 

With all your heart: I am to give my all to the things that I am serving in. No settling for mediocrity. No half-accomplishing things. No “it’s fine.” No “this will do.” I am to give my whole heart.

 

Consider what great things He has done for you: I want to be living in a constant state of gratitude before the Lord. I want to be mindful that He rescued me from the dominion of darkness and transferred me to the kingdom of light (Colossians 1:13). He indeed has done great things for us!

So, my dear sisters, I pray that you will only fear the Lord. I pray that you will serve Him with all of your heart. I pray that you will remember the great things He has done for you. He is everything and I pray you experience Him through His word as it sinks into your souls!

I love you all so much,

Sherry

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