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Christine has over 20 years of children's ministry experience. She's the author of 10 books and hundreds of articles related to children's ministry. It's no wonder she enjoys an almost-daily latte to keep her going! She is also the executive editor of Children's Ministry Magazine and serves as Group's children's ministry champion, responsible for research, development, and innovation in children's ministry resources. 

You Were Made for This

This morning I awoke and felt that old familiar stress rising in my chest. So much to do. So much to learn. Overwhelmed by projects and deadlines.

And then I heard the voice of God: "I was made for this." Immediately, peace replaced the stress.

God was telling me that I have the right stuff for the task he's called me to do. And so do you.

Whatever you're facing today, know that You Were Made for This. You have the right personality. The right temperament. The right gifts. The right skills.

God in his wisdom has placed you where you are...and you were made for whatever you're facing!

And because of that, my friend, don't let stress steal away the joy in knowing that you're the right person for the job! Relax and enjoy seeing God do great things through you since he's equipped you fully for what you need!

Posted at 19:56

Parents Writing Scripture on Kids' Hearts

Fresh from our Family Ministry reGroup (here at Group) with Dr. Brian Haynes, author of Shift: What it takes to finally reach families today.

Here are some ideas we brainstormed for helping parents easily write Scripture on their kids' hearts weekly:

* Write a verse on a chalkboard weekly that sits at the breakfast table (Brian's family does this).

* Print a verse and post it on the fridge for the week.

* Write on the bathroom mirror with a dry-erase marker.

* Put it on a 3X5 card and put it on your car's dashboard.

* Save it weekly as your family's computer's screensaver.

* Text it to your kids.

* Put a note in their lunchbox.

* Use the "Talking Tom" app to have them say it and the app repeats it.

* Play it as music in your car.

What else would you add?

Posted at 17:13

Aha Moments at Sea

So my other two aha moments on the cruise (I mentioned one in my last blog posting). We rented a beater car from Tony off the side of the road on Grand Turks Island. And when we stopped for lunch, we had an amazing conversation with a restaurant owner (we were the only customers). She poured out her heart to my husband and me (he's an IT guy who's also a trained counselor). We were able to minister to her and I have to tell you that was the most meaningful moment on the entire cruise. It made me want more. In fact, I said to Ray that we could go on counseling missions just to let people talk to him!

The other thing is that I got assaulted by cruise staff to buy really expensive stuff to "cleanse toxins" from my body. I tried to explain to them that it was an issue of conscience that I didn't want to spend loads of money to "prioritize my health." I just kept thinking of a man from Africa who recently asked me to come do some training and I told him I couldn't afford it. How could I buy this stuff and not afford to minister to his leaders and kids? (I've been in touch with him since returning.)

So the outcome? As soon as I got back, I talked to Dave Thornton who leads our LifeTree Adventures (part Indiana Jones/part Mother Teresa), and said "sign me up." When I travel (with an exception here and there), I want to make a difference--not just get waited on!

So I'm planning to go on the LifeTree Adventure trips to deliver Operation Kid-2-Kid items to children in the Dominican Republic (Nov 5-12, 2011) and Costa Rica (March 10-17, 2012). Want to join me? Dave says my job will be to "love on" fellow travelers and children. I can't wait!

Check it out at www.lifetreeadventures.com

Posted at 18:56

We Rise or Fall

My husband and I just got back from a cruise. And, yes, we had a great, relaxing, wonderful time. That said, I also had three "aha" moments or God sightings that weren't courtesy of the cruise line.

The first one: So the last day I'm waiting in line for breakfast (after being pampered and waited on all week). And things are taking a little longer than usual. Okay, by the time I got back to our table, Ray was almost finished. And the line just kept passing me as I stood there and waited and waited and waited.

Then I got a little choked up. Not a lot...just a little.

And I thought...Really? Really? This is what chokes me up? It was a big aha moment. If that's what upsets me in life then God help me!

And I realized that we rise or fall to the level of luxury or deprivation we allow in our lives. I think it would be so easy to become so pampered that every little irritation becomes a big thing--and my flesh craves falling to that level. I had a "come to Jesus" moment where I decided that's not who I want to be. I'd rather rise to a deeper level of doing without so I learn to persevere and put up with hardship. That's where real living is. I don't think that's what the cruise line had planned for me, but it is what God had planned.

What about you? Are you rising or falling right now?

 

Posted at 06:48

Found My Word!

Previously, I posted that I wasn't able to come up with a word for my New Year's Resolution. So God was faithful to deliver the word to me---OPEN!

Soon after that blog, Group laid off 26 people and reorganized our business structure. The emotions of going through that and saying goodbye to much-loved co-workers was gut-wrenching. I totally agree with the business decisions; it's just hard to see people hurting, as you know.

Soon after the layoff, I duginto my new responsibilities. Needless to say: I have a LOT to learn! But thank God for an amazing team of people who have positive can-do attitudes and really know their jobs well.

I have a feeling I'm going to be stretched beyond anything I could ever ask or imagine. I've been asking God to help me be open to all the new ways of doing things, new responsibilities, and new people.

I love that God knows what's best for me--even when I don't. I'm open to what he has in store in 2011!

Posted at 21:05

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