The 3: What I'm Learning...

The 3 – April Edition

It’s been too long. Sorry, blog friends. But I’m hoping that this post will kick start me and get me back on track with blogging at least a couple times a week. It’s time for April’s Edition of “The 3”!

So here it is… Three things I’ve been learning and relearning this month:

1. Family is amazing!
Near the beginning of this month I got to spend 5 days in Kansas with my family celebrating birthdays, homecomings, and just life. I’ve also started skyping often with my awesome cousin Allie in California who I reconnected with while in CA in January for a conference. Between these opportunities (and the normal phone calls, texts, and emails) I’m reminded of the amazing gift of family and truly love the joy they bring to my life. (Not to mention my amazing NY “family”)

20130430-213433.jpg

2. Ministry LIFE is hard. God’s grace is sufficient.
This month had plenty of ups and downs for me when it came to ministry. Nothing bad really happened ever and there weren’t any particularly rough situations… Just plenty of chances to relearn humility and my great need for grace… to remember I CAN’T do this (or anything in life really) in my own strength. It’s all about trusting Jesus and HIS strength which is more than enough for each day.

3. Trusting God’ leads to a much more beautiful life than ‘Pleasing God.’
This definitely ties in with the lesson above, but became vividly clear while reading a book my friend suggested to me called, “The Cure:What if God Isn’t who You Think He Is and Neither are You”. I can’t say enough about how amazing this book is! The grace and freedom found in Christ is described in a way so much more tangible and amazing than I’ve ever heard before and it comes down to the simple difference between living a life trying to please God and living a life of trusting God. The same trials and suffering are present in both mindsets, but to trust God brings a whole lot more peace and joy in the midst of the struggles!

The 3: What I'm Learning...

The 3: March Edition – GRACE ME!

So, I know it’s already April 9, but I wanted to go ahead and share my “three” for March… three things I’ve been learning or re-learning in life.

1. I am called. Many days I don’t understand it.  Some days I don’t feel good enough for it.  Other days I feel slightly more confident.  Everyday, I am grateful.  But no matter what I feel or understand or don’t understand.  This is true: God has called me as his daughter and he LOVES me.  The same is true for you.  He also has called me to trust Him and share Him.  This is a beautiful GRACE-filled, joyful calling, not one of duty or obligation.

2. Grace ignites passionate work. This flows out of learning number one, but as Ephesians 2:8-10 show us… it is not by works we are saved or do anything.  The grace of God alone prompts us, sustains us, leads us, and fulfills the purpose He has for us.  We are created as God’s workmanship to do the work he has set before us each day, and we are able to do that through grace alone.

3. Laugh! This is a repeat from October’s Three, but I’ve definitely been re-learning it: LAUGH!  A Lot. Whenever you get the chance. Just because. Why not? It makes life so much better. :)

 

What have you been learning or relearning in life lately?

The 3: What I'm Learning...

The 3: February Edition – Be Bold

There is great value in occasionally stopping and reflecting on all I’m learning. Whether in my professional life, in my relationship with Jesus, in how I interact with people around me, and more. Here’s February’s Edition of “The 3” … three things I’ve been learning lately.

1. Pray Boldly
Whether I’m praying for my students, or asking God to work in my own life… whether lifting up family and friends from afar or seeking God with a friend on my couch in the living room… whether the prayers are ones I’m asking just for today or if I likely won’t see answer for years… I’ve been learning to pray boldly. As I see God’s answers to very specific and sometimes large prayers, it encourages me even more to seek Him constantly. I have chances in every moment to converse with and seek the help of the Creator and Sustainer of the Universe… He’s got the power, why not tap into it?

2. Love Boldly
I’ve also been learning about what it means to take risks in loving the people around me as well as those I don’t know that well. To be bold in seeking to grow new relationships and be fully present in the midst of them. To set aside fears and situations from the past that perhaps would have kept me from caring about the people God’s placed in front of me and trust HIM to provide protection, wisdom, and courage. He’s let my heart be broken over hurting people in the world, and the next step after brokenness, is action… it’s to love boldly.

3. Live Boldly
I guess this kind of could be the umbrella over the first two, but it is unique and different from them. This is the place where I’ve been re-learning what it means to live in such a way that brings great joy to myself, to others, and most of all to God. That when God asks me to do something, and I trust him, and just do it, the joy is so great I can’t even describe it. It’s choosing joy even when circumstances wouldn’t normally seem to lead to that reaction. It’s setting aside what others may think or desire of me in order to please the only One whose opinion matters.

So what are you learning this month? My three all seem pretty “serious” or “deep this month, but it can be anything… have you learned a new skill? Learned something new about yourself? Learned a cool fact? What are three things you’ve learned in the last month or so?

The 3: What I'm Learning...

The 3: January Edition

A couple months ago I started a monthly-ish series called “The 3” , a series geared to make me stop occasionally and really think about what I’m learning. Sometimes the lessons are what God’s teaching me in my personal relationship with him, sometimes it’s professional learnings, other times, it’s basic skill around the house. Here’s my current “3”:

1. Friends/Teammates ROCK!
God has blessed me throughout my entire life with some awesome friends and people to work alongside. Lately, he has continued to overwhelm me with encouragement through both new and old friendships. It is great to have people in my life to laugh with and hang out with, as well as people who pray for me and with me and aren’t afraid to throw some truth in my face when I need it. I’ve been learning to actually let myself depend on other people and am discovering daily the beautiful blessings that come in walking through life together with others.

2. Parents ROCK!
I seriously have the best parents ever! They’re AWESOME! I also have gotten to witness some amazing people around me parent their children and I have to say YOU ROCK! I don’t have children of my own but I have an ever growing appreciation for those that do and I just want to encourage you. You have a tough job and you’re doing great! This carries over into the work realm as it seems everywhere I turn lately there have been discussions about parent and family ministry and the importance of parents in the faith growth of their children. In a webinar I was in today they shared the statistic that kids are 300% more likely to stay connected with Christ after high school if conversations about faith were a regular part of their home life. 300 PERCENT! That’s incredible. Parents, you’ve got a big job, but you’re not alone!

3. God ROCKS!
More than anything the last month, I have just been blown away by God’s presence and guidance in my life. I took a trip to California for a conference and to visit family a couple weeks ago, and I can’t even count the number of opportunities I had to share my faith with people or pray for people. God consistently was answer prayers and showing up all around me. He’s been providing what I need when I need it even when I don’t realize I need it. He’s been showing up in His Word, in people, in silly little things that probably mean nothing to anyone else. Yep. I’m (re)learning right now how much God ROCKS!


What are three things YOU’VE been learning lately?

Just a FEW of my many rockin’ awesome teammates and friends:

20130124-150350.jpg

20130124-150356.jpg

20130124-150402.jpg

20130124-150408.jpg

31 Days of Intentionality, The 3: What I'm Learning...

The 3: October Version {Day 11 – Intentionality}

At the end of August, I started what I hoped would be a monthly series on my blog called “The 3” which simply includes 3 things I’m learning in life right now.  I missed September, but in an effort to be more INTENTIONAL, here we are near the beginning of the month for October’s version.

1. Obviously, I’m learning a lot about intentionality… what does it mean to live life on purpose.  I’m not going to go too in depth with this since we’re talking about it for 31 days.

2. Dependence. For a very independent girl, this can be a tough one. Yet, my biggest learning about dependence (at least when it comes to depending on God) is that it really ISN’T hard… in fact it is absolutely beautiful to be in a place of perfect trust and obedience.  It surely does tie in with learning #1 as it takes intentionality in order to constantly be depending on God, but like I said, life is so beautiful and filled with peace when I can do that.  It’s like the pressure’s off… all my job is to listen and obey and I can do this because I know God has my best in mind.

3. Laugh. A Lot. Whenever you get the chance. Just because. Why not? It makes life so much better. 🙂

There you have it… my current “3”.  What are you learning right now in your job, your family, your faith?

The 3: What I'm Learning...

The 3: What I’m Learning…

Each week I get a series of e-mails called Simply Youth Ministry Today. Each e-mail includes a few paragraphs of “stuff” related to youth ministry and being a leader in the church.  This week, I enjoyed a series where three different youth workers simply shared three things they are learning right now. (Post 1, Post 2, Post 3)

Topics ranged from practicing what we preach to discussions of how the more things change, perhaps the more they stay the same.  It challenged me to think about what I am learning right now.  What is God teaching me… yes, about ministry, but also about family, about friends, about life in general.  So while sticking to consistent themed blog topics haven’t been my greatest achievement, this is one I’d like to explore more frequently, perhaps just once a month or so. And today, on the last day of a month, it seems like a great time to start.

Here are my “3”… what I’m learning (or perhaps re-learning) right now:

  1. Jesus. Jesus. Jesus. It really is all about Jesus.   For the last few months (and possibly up to a year) I’ve been convinced of God’s calling to simply know him. To know Jesus more personally.   To challenge some of the false perceptions “the world” has created about him… to challenge some of the false perceptions I have made about him.  When push comes to shove, knowing the true Jesus is all that matters in life, and once you know him, you can’t help but share him… the real him.
  2. Step Up! The last few weeks have been FILLED with conviction.  The message again and again and again has been “Get comfortable with being uncomfortable.  Challenge yourself, Bekah.  Live to the full even when it’s hard.”  I recently started using The Verses Project to help me stay committed to memorizing Scripture and placing it in my heart.  This weeks verse hits on this topic again: “Yet, if anyone suffers as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but let him glorify God in that name.”  I’ve been learning what it means to step up and not be ashamed.
  3. Love People Well. While on vacation a couple of weeks ago, I got to witness the wedding celebration of two of the most faithful Christ followers I know.  During the ceremony they shared a video with both of them sharing their testimony and telling all in attendance about Jesus.  At the reception, toast after toast after toast after toast pointed to their dedication and passion to live for Christ.  On a day that could have easily and understandably been all about them, they chose to point to Christ.  While this supports both of the first two things I’m learning, one of the main ways I’ve seen these people share Christ is by loving people well, even when that is hard, even when they’d rather do something else, even when that love involves accountability and challenge.  I pray that I never stop learning how to love people well.

So there you have it… three things I’m learning right now.

What are you learning?  What would be your “3” right now? Share in the comments.