Thursday, November 6, 2008

when I grow up...

Right now, I should be researching instead of blogging, but let's be honest, writing is much more relaxing than researching at this hour. And it's been a super long day. OK good, now I've justified my procrastination.

Tonight in class the topic was and will continue to be traumatic brain injuries and therapy. I've been leaning towards this area for the last few months and my interest is only confirmed by nights like tonight. I don't know how to explain it other than I feel like my focus is narrowing. The Lord is deepening a compassion in my heart for this population that is having to relearn basic skills robbed from them by injury. There is so much to learn, but I'm excited to see where the Lord continues to lead.
So often I've questioned the Lord's will for my life, especially at a crossroads such as now when determining a job. It's so easy to take the burden of choosing the right path on myself; second guessing myself as to whether or not I'm in the Lord's will in decisions about a job. Yet, if I know the Lord's ultimate will is that I bring Him glory through loving His people and sharing the Gospel, the burden of choosing the right venue is lifted. This is not to discredit the importance of seeking the Lord's direction, rather as an encouragement not to be paralyzed by the fear of choosing the wrong route. Pursue His will where you are today. Love His people with His love. Whether you're where you want to be or not, whether you're at a fork in the road of your journey, or you've just made a seemingly life altering decision...walk confidently in His leading.

"Wherever you are, be all there. Live to the hilt every situation you believe to be the will of God." -Jim Elliot

Monday, November 3, 2008


This weekend I went home for a family wedding. It was great to see a ton of my family. I'm so thankful for my family. Everyone is so different, but somehow we all fit together. Friday night Dad and I watched the ASU game from the nice warm house. Some might discredit my loyalty for not physically attending the game, but I have my priorities....warmth being at the top of the list. :) ASU of course dominated...on to Elon and WCU.

Saturday I got to put my Elementary Ed degree to work in making a Thanksgiving bulletin board for Mom.

Chad and Ashley came in for the wedding. After all the festivities we went out for dinner. All the siblings plus a cousin and my newest "brother" Kevin.

In the parking lot all of the sudden I hear Daniel say, "John McCain." I turned around and saw all the boys posing. It was hilarious...well at least some of us thought so P.S. We're all about some McCain...

Sunday, Mom and I were able to have a really good talk making dinner together. I'm so thankful for her wisdom and encouragement. She's absolutely a "Titus 2" woman for me.
"Older women likewise are to be reverent in their behavior, not malicious gossips nor enslaved to much wine, teaching what is good, so that they may encourage the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be sensible, pure, workers at home, kind, being subject to their own husbands, so that the word of God will not be dishonored."
Titus 2:3-5
(minus the whole husband and children part yet) :)

Sunday, October 26, 2008

sola gratia

sola gratia=by grace alone

i didn't really understand the Gospel until a couple years ago when the Lord opened my eyes to the freedom of grace. i grew up in a Christian home, Christian school, Christian college. i understood how to be a good girl, in fact, that's where i found my identity. following rules was what i did, and i was good at it. but when i fell short, i felt condemned. i used my good behavior as reasoning for God to be pleased with me, to see me as righteous. when i broke the rules, spoke a harsh word or was just plain sinful, i found myself working extra hard to make up for my short comings. i thought my behavior determined God's view of me. how foolish.

a few years ago i went to work at camp lurecrest. i thought i was going to serve, which i did, but God had such a larger plan for that summer. i finally understood grace after that summer. understood that my right standing before God has nothing to do with whether or not i read my Bible every morning, share the Gospel, have a servant's heart, hold my tongue when i'm angry, or move to Africa to be a missionary. my righteousness is ONLY because of what God did for me through Jesus on the cross. i can never be good enough to earn my salvation, or bad enough to loose it. i had heard this idea all my life, in fact, i'm sure i told people this truth. yet, there was a disconnect between my head and my heart. i can't begin to express the freedom and peace this truth has brought to my life. i now serve and am obedient to the Lord's calling out of loving response for the gift of grace He's given me, rather than in effort to gain His approval. i already have His complete approval, because when He looks on me, He sees Jesus, not sarah. sarah will never be good enough to earn salvation. i rest now in the work God did for me. 
i share this because of a few conversations i've had recently with friends where i felt the heaviness of a misunderstanding of grace. the burden of working for salvation. God knows we are completely incapable of living a "good" life on our own. trying to do so is wearisome and impossible. only through the Spirit are we able to live a life in loving response to the free gift of grace. so why not live a life for myself, seeking pleasure over morality? much of it can be summed up in one word, gratitude. so if you're trying to do it all on your own, lost hope that you'll never be good enough or think you're too dirty to be clean, take comfort. Christ died so that you could be free. sola gratia!

"For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are His workmanship created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them." Ephesians 2:8-10

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Let the Redeemed say so...

"Let the redeemed of the Lord say so, whom He has redeemed from the hand of the adversary..." Psalm 107:2

Well here it is...blogging. I've always been somewhat afraid of blogging, and here's why: I always associated blogging with having a public diary, and a diary by definition is supposed to be a private document, "a daily record, usually private, esp. of the writer's own experiences, observations, feelings, attitudes, etc." Growing up with two brothers who prided themselves in stealing my diary taught me early in life to safeguard my diary and protect its contents with whatever means necessary. Seriously, having your fifth grade crush revealed to the neighborhood can be scarring. (Don't worry Chad and Daniel, the wounds have healed:))

So if I'm so against sharing my diaries, why you may ask am I blogging? The answer: Positive Peer Pressure. Some of my dear friends have been blogging recently about lessons from their lives and it has encouraged me and challenged me to share the Lord's faithfulness in my own life. The Lord has redeemed me and because of that, I gladly say so.