Happy Friday everyone! It’s almost the weekend, yay! We had a wonderful weekend last week with a friend’s coed bridal shower/tool party on Friday night, serving at Hargis Retreat with our small group on Saturday (where we got to play with and mentor 36 kids from the Lovelady Center) and hanging out with Patrick's family all day Sunday, ending the night with great worship and teaching on Acts at church!
Just a quick note about what we did Saturday:
Our small group enjoyed the first time we served at the
so much that we’ve been aiming to serve there and meet with the kids once a month. It just so happened that this past Saturday the Center had arranged for all the kids to spend the day at Hargis Retreat (a beautiful YMCA camp out of the city where there’s a chapel, pond, cabins, conference center, playground, swimming pool, you name it)! We thought this would be a great opportunity to spend several hours with the kids and they had a buddy system so we each got to really invest in one kid specifically. It’s hard for me not to go on and on about it, but the day was so fun and it went really well! I couldn’t have been matched with a sweeter, easier, and cuter little 6 year old girl. She had a big, diva-like personality! I think she made more of an impact on me than I did her, but hopefully some of the talking we got to do planted some seeds about how much God loves her and wants a relationship with her for the rest of her life. It was so sweet how she wanted to be held or piggy-backed all day, sitting in my lap, or holding my hand, and wearing my sunglasses. I ended up just letting her have them because she loved them so much and wanted to show them off to her friends at her school. She gave me one of her crazy bands in exchange so that anytime I wear it I’ll remember her. I can’t forget her! Lovelady Center
I hope to return to
and see her again, each month if possible, or at least stay in touch with her. She even took my name tag so she could know whose name to say when she prays for me! That just melts your heart. I found out a little bit about her family life and how she ended up at Lovelady Center with her mom and sister. We talked a little about dating and marriage since she was enthralled with Lovelady Center Patrick and I being married. Her mother has also recently re-married so it’s on her mind. By the end of the day, she was calling Patrick and I mommy and daddy and asked if we could take her home "since we don't have a baby to take care of yet" haha. It breaks your heart to say goodbye after they start feeling attached to you. But I hope she had a fun day with all the activities and hearing a quick sermon. We got to go canoeing and hiking, we swung on the playground and went for a walk to see the ducks, we did face painting, shooting archery and ate McDonalds for lunch. We were suppose to have thunderstorms but the day ended up being sunny and warm. I had a blast myself! I was also completely worn out by the end of the day! We came home and I went to sleep at like 6! If that was at all a glimpse into motherhood, which i'm sure it was and not even half of what it entails, then i'm not near ready. The mental, emotional and physical attention children require is constant. It's truly a selfless and servant-like act to parent. I think it's wonderful that they’re being exposed to the gospel and people who are Christ-followers through the Center at such a young age. I hope for her and all the kids there that no matter where their family goes from here and how hard life is right now, that God is tugging on their hearts and drawing them close to Him, the way he did with me as I was growing up.
Anyway, so to get to the purpose of today’s post, I wanted to share with everyone about a new book called “Made to Crave: Satisfying Your Deepest Desire With God, Not Food.” It’s written by Lysa TerKeurst whose one of the founders of Proverbs 31 Ministries: Bringing God’s Peace, Perspective and Purpose to Today’s Busy Woman. Now, I haven’t read this book yet, though I’m really looking forward to it whenever I get the time! It’s a little hard right now with doing a couples small group study, a women’s study, and a marriage study with my husband (which we rarely fit in). But as you may know based on the devotions blog I started, I have issues with food as many other women do. She addresses the battle people have with food (whether that’s eating too much or not enough, but usually too much) and why it’s such a struggle. She says the heart of the issue is that God created us to experience craving. He created all of us with an emptiness in our soul and deepest part of our body that only He can fill up and make whole. We were made to crave! The problem is we all try to fix that emptiness with other things- food being one of the most common, but there are others such as alcohol, drugs, a relationship, a friendship, exercising, entertainment, etc. I know this is true for me! For years I’ve struggled with overeating and turning to food when I’m stressed, hurt, angry, happy, bored, celebrating, crying, whatever the emotion or event may be. I use food to try to make myself feel better instead of turning to God with my emotions and problems. This is what her whole book is all about! But it’s not just about this difficult and sinful approach we have to food, she also teaches on how to stop this frustrating cycle and bad habit, putting our desire to be healthy into action and having the spiritual empowerment from God to overcome our temptation to sin once and for all! Based on her experiences and struggle with food, she guides readers to change their lifestyles (not just go on diets that cause us to gain and lose weight over and over), how to turn to God for comfort and strength when we’re dealing with life’s troubles instead of other things, and how to make these changes with His help (we know when we try to do it on our own out of self-determination, despite our good intentions, we always fail at some point). So, I’m looking forward to reading this one day and wanted others to know about it in case they can start it now!
1 Corinthians 3:16-17 Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in you? If anyone destroys God’s temple, God will destroy that person; for God’s temple is sacred and you together are that temple.
1 Corinthians 6:12-20 You say that you have the right to do anything, but not everything you want to do is beneficial. “I have the right to do anything,” you say, “but I will not be mastered by anything.” You say, “Food for the stomach and the stomach for food, and God will destroy them both.” The body, however, is not meant for immorality, but for the Lord and the Lord for the body. Do you not know that your bodies are members of
Christ himself? God’s own Spirit dwells in your body. You are not your own, you were bought at a price. Therefore, honor God with your bodies.
**My friend and one of the girls in our small group is a clinical dietitian. She offered us a very good piece of advice and phrase to make decisions by regarding when to eat or not. You might find it helpful too! "If anything sounds good to eat-even a piece of fruit or vegetables- then your body is hungry and you should eat. If you're only wanting something like chocolate or chips, then you have a craving and you're not really hungry." Wow! So when we're experiencing a craving that's when we know we should pass on the food and go to God to get filled up**