a Surrendered Life

When I think of the word surrender more often than not I envision an army surrendering to another army who just gives up.  Sometimes I think of a person surrendering to the will of someone else.  But instead of thinking of the word "surrender" as a verb--as an action--I want to challenge you to think of surrender as an adjective.

I know that this goes against every rule in the English language, but hear me out.

God wants us to move past this action of surrendering into a surrendered life.  In other words, God desires us to move past the process of surrendering every problem as it arises in our life.  He wants us to move into a new realm of trust.  He deeply desires us to always live in this complete trust state.

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DIY Magnet Boards

Hopefully you have finished all your spring cleaning.  But if you haven't or if you are just looking for an easy, inexpensive idea to help organize I've got the project for you.  (Look here, here, and here for more easy crafts.)

This project only cost about $2 to make and most of the supplies I had laying around the house.

Here's what you'l

Take the Plunge: Getting Started as a Mentor + Printable

Doing life alone has a tendency to become very boring, very lonely, and something scary.  Here's the great thing: we're not supposed to do life alone.  We're called to live life together.

Relationships are a crazy thing.  In order to be growing as an individual, there are three types of relationships that we should be actively cultivating.  First, we need to be learning for someone more experienced.  Second, we need to surround ourselves with people at the same level that we are.  Last, we need to be sharing our life with someone who can learn from our experiences.  In other words we must be mentoring other people.

If you've been a reader for a while, you might remember that I shared my passion for the mandate of mentoring about a year ago.  (You can read more about that here.)  Over the past year, if anything, my passion for this has only grown.  Let me explain why.

As Christ followers, there are very few of us who have not heard of the Great Commission, but just in case, I'll share it with you again.  Before Jesus ascended into heaven the book of Matthew states Christ's last words to His disciples, "Go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, of the Son, and of the

Beautiful Things

Last summer, boredom and loneliness drove me from my house straight into a deserted reservoir.  In the seclusion of this forgotten place I soon began to find the unique beauty of my hideaway.  As I meandered through my secret hideaway I discovered the peace of nature.  The birds swooped down.  Rabbits scurried from one bush to the next as they tried to escape my eyes.  I watched as spring become summer and then fall.  The grass turned green.  The flowers bloomed.  The colors turned from bright pinks and yellows to warm orange and red.

I couldn't wait to escape the day on my evening walks through the reservoir.  Many times I would stay out well past dark just drinking in the magic of my place.

In reality, my magical hideaway is just a huge drainage ditch that runs along the back of our property catching any flood water from the Arkansas River.  But to me, that huge ditch was a beautiful place for my mind to find quiet.  It become a beautiful place to me.

It's interesting how God takes similar ditches in our lives and makes them places of beauty.  

Overwhelmed by the times and places in my life that were filled with pain, hate, and ugliness I wonder how those places could every be beautiful.  Just their memory still causes me to doubt myself. But somehow, someway, God takes these times of intense grief and makes them beautiful to him.

Ecclesiates 3:11 says, "He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end." That's so like Christ taking everything that the enemy means for evil in our life and turning it around for good...those dead, dry memories in our lives and uses them to bring Him glory.

There's no way to completely understand God and His sovereignty.  He works in ways we cannot see or understand, but we have this assurance that He is working.  He's taking the drainage ditches in our lives and plants beautiful flowers in them.  He's taking the overgrown, dark path and clears the branches making an easy path for us to follow.  He's working all things for our good.

Today, I leave you with this.  Look for the beauty in the ugly.  Find the joy in the sadness.  Discover the comfort in the pain.  Though difficult to find, it's there.  It's waiting to point you back to Christ and to His ability to restore your heart.

Spring: a Celebration of New Things

When I started blogging a little over a year ago, I remember finding other bloggers share about their tiredness of blogging.  Most of them had been blogging for about a year.  I remember reading posts with challenges to blog everyday for a month.  I never took any of those challenges up mostly because I was blogging about 4-5 times a week and was very happy with the content.  I remember thinking at the time, "What are these ladies talking about?  How can you get tired of blogging?  Blogging is one of the best outlets in the world."

I started out the new year with big plans and dreams for this little blog.  You might remember this post about my blogging values.  I believed in those values and still do.

I was determined to be a blogger who made a difference with her blog.  I wanted to change lives--to challenge and encourage women who were needed encouragement and strength.

Despite my determination to not become that blogger, I did.  I wouldn't say that I ran out of things to write or to share.  I could share my opinion all day long.  But I annoy myself, so I can only imagine what it would be like to read that.  Not fun.

I think I just grew weary.

Looking back over the last couple of months, I regret not blogging...not sharing life with other people who I've come to value.  I lost that love for connection.

For that I'm sorry.

I don't really feel that I need to ask your forgiveness for not blogging.  How conceded would that be?  How vain would I be thinking that you've just been sitting at your computer waiting to hear from me?  (Sometimes blogging and using social media makes us selfish.)

I do want to share life with you and I'm choosing to make an effort to do that.

I hope that we can reconnect and began this journey together again.

So, about that title...well, it is still spring and in spring we celebrate all new things.  We celebrate the birth of little animals.  We celebrate the earth as she awakens from her winter's sleep.  We celebrate the clean, freshness of everything.  So, today, I'm celebrating a new spring for All My Love for All My Days.  She's getting cleaned up and reborn.  And that is something to celebrate...at least for me.

Welcome May + May Desktop Calendar

May is here!  The flowers are bursting out of the ground and the business of summer has started too soon.  But there is one thing about all this business.  The sooner you get it done, the sooner you can leave for vacation!

Enjoy this desktop calendar!

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