Monday, May 31, 2010

Chair Time

I have realized a couple of things about myself recently. The first, is that I do pretty good with the big picture kind of stuff in life. This is one reason why One Million Arrows resonated so deeply for me. It spoke my language. Second, the issues I struggle with are daily laid down life kind of things. Like serving others and letting go of my flesh driven selfish nature. Can they see His character - the Fruit of His Spirit living in me? And by they, I don't mean the Publix check out girl. I can be loving, joyful, patient and gentle with her for at least 5 minutes. I am talking about the people who know me best, the ones I can't family.

"It simply is not natural for most of us to love God or love others in the dramatic discipline of a laid down life. We are selfish, self-serving people... Yet God in Christ came among us in lowly service. He came to minister to us, to give Himself to us. And so, because He first loved us, we in turn are to be willing and ready to love Him and others."
(see John 3:16-17 and1 John 3:16-17)
Lessons From A Sheepdog, p 56

I recently read this little book and fell in love with the sweet dog Lass. I saw so much of myself in her. The above quote is one that truly spoke to me. My flesh does not want to lay down my life and serve. I often find myself grumbling that I have do "it" myself. But the truth is that Christ came among us to love and serve. His was a life laid down from the very beginning (Philippians 2:5-11). His Spirit lives within me. And because of that I have the capacity to love, serve, and show His character to others. He isn't asking me to do anything He wasn't willing to do. And He doesn't ask me to do it myself either. All He asks of me is to step aside and allow the Fruit of His Spirit to do it through me.

"Little children, (or in this case their mother), let us not love with word
or with tongue, but in deed and truth."
1 John 3:18

Looking Forward,

One Million Arrows Winner

The winner of the copy of One Million Arrows is:

Leslie from Tiny Wings - learning to fly! Leslie found her way to 29lincolnavenue through our mutual friend Tracie at tsj photography. Congratulations Leslie! Please email me your address and I will get send you the book this week. I know you will be blessed as you read this amazing book. If you would like to order a copy for yourself you can click here.

Today I am contributing a blog post over at One Million Arrows. Be sure to stop by and check it out. Thanks Julie for the opportunity!

Looking Forward,

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Multitude Monday

Counting 1,000 Gifts

#270 Oreo Cheescake

#271 Catching up with my in real life friend who blogs, and meeting
my blog friend who is now in my real life friend!


P.S. Have you joined the 29lincolnavenue Facebook Fan Page?

Thursday, May 27, 2010

On Million Arrows My Response

So here I sit, thinking to myself, “How can I take the long way home and commit today to raising arrows that will strike a blow against the kingdom of darkness?”

First, I am praying that God will give my husband & me a specific vision for raising our own little pink arrows. They are all unique and fabulously made. I am determined now more than ever to be a parent who is purposeful. Second, I know it will take a commitment from me every day to be shaped by the Shepherd Himself…because “they will become as I am becoming..” (Paraphrased from page 22). I have to be willing to be shaped first before I am going to shape them.

Will it be easy? No. Will I be asked to forgo my own personal comforts? Probably. Might others think I am crazy? Surely. Will there be rewards? You bet.

I am going to offer one person a chance to win a copy of this book. Leave a comment below and tell me what you are thinking about this week's focus of One Million Arrows. *I will choose one comment from to win a free copy of this book. The contest is open until Sunday May 29 at midnight.

If by chance your heart is stirred, I highly encourage you to order this book. I promise you will be challenged and inspired! And another added blessing is that all proceeds from the sale of One Million Arrows go to further work with orphans around the world! So not only will you be blessed to read it, you will bless others by purchasing it as well.

Looking Forward,

To order a copy of One Million Arrows, click here.

***Contest is only open to those living in the United States of America.

Julie Ferwerda is recognized for making the Bible exciting and relevant to everyday life through her writing and speaking. Her articles are featured in many Christian magazines and websites for both adults and teens, and she frequently volunteers her time and talents to international orphan ministry. Learn more at

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

One Million Arrows Review


These words all describe how I felt as read this book. At it's core, it is a book discipling our children in Christ. The book is broken into three sections. First Julie challenges you to Gather – by owning the mission, next to Sharpen – by being purposeful in the training of your children, and finally to Launch – by placing them in the hands of Christ “prepared as skillful weapons against the kingdom of darkness” By doing this you can raise children who will literally change the world.

The vision for this book came from a long time servant of Christ, Dr. M.A. Thomas or 'Papa', as he is often called. Serving in the poorest sections of India, Papa, received a calling from the Lord to gather, sharpen, and launch arrows who also happened to be orphans. As Julie describes, this method of discipleship can also work in our own homes with our children.

I think my favorite part of the book is in the chapter entitled “Shape Arrows At Home.” In it, Julie interviews several parents including Bob and Pam Tebo, Gregg and Sono Harris, and Josh McDowell . As a Florida girl, I have to give a special nod to this quote about recent Florida Gator and Heisman Trophy winner Tim Tebow’s parents:

Tim had parents who stuck to the safer, long way home by committing themselves to raising arrows… Tim’s parents made decisions based on the big picture, not on immediate gratification, easy shortcuts, or personal comfort. From the beginning, they set out to raise kids who would make a lasting impact on this world.” P. 52

If you haven't been living under a rock for the past few years, you certainly know about Tim Tebow. You probably also know, that he was recently drafted to play in the NFL for the Denver Broncos. Even if you aren't a football fan, you may have seen Tim and his mom in a Super Bowl Ad for for Life, produced by Focus on The Family. The amazing thing is that when Tim's parents realized how gifted he was, they saw football as a platform for him to share Christ. Today, that vision is giving him the chance to share his testimony with people all over the world.

Tim is just one of a Million Arrows that God has used to change the world for Christ. His parents answered the call early on to become arrow shapers. I would highly encourage you to read One Million Arrows and you will be powerfully moved to consider how you might become an arrow shaper, too.

Looking Forward,

To Read a copy of Chapter 1, click here.
For information on how to order a copy, click here.

Julie Ferwerda is recognized for making the Bible exciting and relevant to everyday life
through her writing and speaking. Her articles are featured in many Christian magazines and websites for both adults and teens, and she frequently volunteers her time and talents to international orphan ministry. Learn more at

P.S. I am also linking up today with Seeds of Faith and I Fellowship to promote this awesome book and the tour! I also happen to like what these neat women are doing to build a community of women online! Check them out!

Seeds Of Faith For The Christian Mom

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

One Million Arrows

I have this unspoken rule. When I stumble across something twice…I take it as hint from God to notice it. I’m not sure where I first saw the book One Million Arrows by Julie Ferwerda, but the Lord in His wisdom put in front of me a second time. I took the hint, contacted Julie and she was gracious enough to send me a copy. Over the next 3 days, I will be participating in her One Million Arrows Blog Tour and dedicating my posts to this awesome book. Today, I am going to give you a basic summary of the book and a chance to read the first chapter. Tomorrow, I will post my Review, and Thursday I will give you a chance to win your own copy.


Will the world change our children...or will our children change the world? Time is short and lives are at stake. Right now, God is inviting our families to become part of a bigger story—a vision that will engage hearts to make a radical difference. One Million Arrows is an inspirational call to raise our kids to impact their culture, community, and world for Christ. If we want our kids to discover their purpose, if we want them to live with passion for the Kingdom, if we want our family to go down in His-Story, accept the mission...and leave a mark for eternity.

Looking Forward,

Download a free copy of Chapter 1, here.
For information on how to order a copy of the book , click here.
To visit other blogs taking part in the OMA Blog Tour, click here.

Julie Ferwerda is recognized for making the Bible exciting and relevant to everyday life through her writing and speaking. Her articles are featured in many Christian magazines and websites for both adults and teens, and she frequently volunteers her time and talents to international orphan ministry. Learn more at

Monday, May 24, 2010

Multitude Monday

Counting 1,000 Gifts.....

#262 Celebrating my dad's birthday and a year of miracles.
I am grateful beyond words!


holy experience

Friday, May 21, 2010

A Few Things

First of all, it is Friday and today is special because:

(Insert cheers and dancing here!!!)

I don't think I have ever been more ready to enjoy summer than I am right now! It has been a great year, but it has also been a hard year. Earlier today I put all our pictures in an album (on my Mac of course because I do not scrapbook!) Then I picked a few songs and played it as a slide show. By the end, I had tears in my eyes...every mother should do this. What is it about music and pictures of our children that makes us cry? Seeing those sweet faces and all the fun things we did this year really brought it to a nice close for me.

Here are a few things I want to share with you:

  • The Modsquadblog is coming! This is an exciting new blog for Mother's Of Daughters. I am thrilled to be co-laborating with these awesome mom's: Amy of Girlfriends Get Real, Megan of Halfpint House, and Traci of tsj photography. Between the 4 of us we have 15 girls. We found each other on Twitter of all places. The most amazing thing is that each of these women have a heart to raise girls who love and follow Jesus with passion. And, they also desire to encourage mom's who are raising daughters. We are hoping to launch this site in the next couple of weeks! If you have daughters or know anyone who does you can follow us now on Twitter @momsquadmoms and look for us soon on Facebook. I will let you know the blog launch date as it gets closer.
  • Next week be sure to check out the One Million Arrows Blog Tour right here. I have been so challenged to be a mom of purpose as I have been reading it. I can't wait to share it with you. I will also be guest posting for OMA on May 31, so be sure to check that out as well.
  • I have been blessed by the recent guests we have enjoyed on the 29lincolnavenue porch! I want to thank Michelle at SomeGirlsWebsite, Stef at Layton Family Joy, and Lara at My Adventure with God Unrehearsed for stopping by to hang out with us! My heart has been so encouraged by these great women of faith. I can't wait to see who stops by next! Maybe it will be you. Be sure to check out the submission guidelines here.

I hope you have a great weekend!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

The Porch

Don't you just love meeting new friends? I am so excited to introduce you to Lara. She is a new friend who has the cutest blog called My Adventures With God, Unrehearsed. Lara describes herself as
"a woman under the grace of our mighty God who has walked through valleys of addiction, death, and betrayal and experienced the miraculous ability of God to bring victory out of seeming despair." I am honored that she wants to take some time to share her heart with us on the 29lincolnavenue porch. I think you will be blessed by this sweet story about her little boy and a our God who delights in us.

Secret Windows

I love the secret windows. From the "women only" room at the gym, I can peak at my kids while they play. Yesterday tears caught me by surprise.

My little guy was working hard. He stood on his tiptoes and reached with all he had for the top of the bookshelf. He carried Thomas to the table for a quick "read." Then the process repeated itself four more times.

At one point the book return did not cooperate. He tried and tried to get Elmo to tuck between Dora and Cookie Monster, but his little arms were just not long enough. The teacher sat close but unaware of his struggle. He never got frustrated. He never asked for help. He just kept no avail. Finally he laid Elmo down for a rest on the lower shelf.

And for some reason I started to cry. I wasn't sad. I was overtaken by my love for him. He was simply being himself--living, doing, moving about. And delight welled up in my spirit.

I realized that at that moment I was reflecting a tiny piece of God. He looks down from His heavenly throne and smiles upon His children. He watches us simply being ourselves--living, doing, moving about--and He loves immeasurably. We are His creation and He delights in His own. Rejoice today under the blanket of His favor--simply because you are His.

You bring Him delight simply because you are His! Don't you love that? Thank you Lara for encouraging our hearts today. Please be sure to visit Lara at her blog and leave a comment below to make her feel welcome to the 29lincolnavenue porch!

Looking Forward,

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Words To Live By

Captivated by this today from 1 John 4 as found in The Message:

11-12My dear, dear friends, if God loved us like this, we certainly ought to love each other. No one has seen God, ever. But if we love one another, God dwells deeply within us, and his love becomes complete in us—perfect love!

17-18God is love. When we take up permanent residence in a life of love, we live in God and God lives in us. This way, love has the run of the house, becomes at home and mature in us....

If anyone boasts, "I love God," and goes right on hating his brother or sister, thinking nothing of it, he is a liar. If he won't love the person he can see, how can he love the God he can't see? The command we have from Christ is blunt: Loving God includes loving people. You've got to love both.
(emphasis mine)

What is the answer to my fear? My anger? My weariness? The love of God that dwells deeply within me. Oh Lord, I want to love like you today! Especially when it comes to my children...let me speak love and show them your great big heart for them.

Looking Forward,

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Chair Time

The day started with a bang. The girls clamored for their breakfast. Between the four of them there are about 15 requests.

As I finished up kitchen duties and moved to put the baby down for a nap I was immediately met by my four year old who wanted to play on the computer. I knew this was a good activity for her while I taught my two older girls. So, I said, "Let me get the big girls started on their work, you dressed and then mommy will put you on the computer."

Teaching my first grader is at best a challenge. I have to bring my "A" game ready for lessons. On this particular day I was overly tired, due to a teething baby and interrupted sleep the night before. As we were making some headway, my oldest burst into the room in tears. She didn't understand what she is reading and was having a meltdown. I sent her to room to finish her emotional breakdown.

Next, I fed the baby who had been crying for about 30 minutes. At this point, it was lunch time for the rest of us. Lunch, like breakfast had about 15 requests. While I was moving the baby to her play seat I realized she was dirty and needed to be changed.

After I changed her she spit up all down the front of me. I cleaned myself up and decided once again to put her in the play seat. As I was dong this, the sisters overwhelmed us to 'love' on her, which really means "hang on me."

This was the tipping point......I lost it verbally, tired, hungry, and overwhelmed by the needs of so many.

I admit, it wasn't pretty. And after placing the baby gently in the play seat I quickly gave myself a much needed time out. Sitting alone in my guest bedroom I had a long talk with the Lord. I cried out to Him. I asked for forgiveness. I told Him I could not do it without Him. I decided that even though I would really like to stay in that bedroom alone for the rest of the day, I needed to check on the kids.

When I returned to the kitchen my lunch had been made by my oldest.
3 of the girls were playing sweetly together.
The air was clear.
I was forgiven.
It was 12:52 pm.

Some days are just like that. It seems like everything goes wrong. And I blow it big time. But, in those moments I am so thankful by this verse:

There is therefore now no condemnation for those that are in Christ Jesus.
Romans 8:1

I have been studying Romans 8 and this truth has truly captivated me. He does not condemn me. In fact later in Romans 8 it says He is for me. And nothing can ever separate me from that love. Even me at the tipping point.

Looking Forward,

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Multitude Monday

Counting 1,000 Gifts

The perfect birthday...

#248 Feet in the Sand

#249 A first trip to the beach

#253 & #256 Mud Pie Mojo & a cake from Krystal

Looking Forward,

Friday, May 14, 2010

I Needed to Feel Small

Yesterday, I needed to feel small. To sit by the ocean's edge and hear the waves crash and stare out at the vast expanse of water and remember, that God is big and His love for me is endless.

Yesterday, I needed to feel small. To watch as my children play in the surf and dig for buried treasures. Because childhood lasts for only a brief minute or two, and you have to take lots of mental pictures to remember it was here at all.

Yesterday, I needed to feel small. To leave the sink full of dirty dishes behind and feel the sun on my face and know that tasks left undone can wait for another day.

Yesterday, I felt small. God was bigger and my soul was quieter. And it was the most glorious feeling I have felt in a long time.

Looking Forward,

Your turn: Can you relate? Do you ever need to feel small and quiet? Where do you go?

Thursday, May 13, 2010

The Porch

Nothing refreshes me more than a chat with a good friend. Today, I am so glad that my friend, Stef, from
Layton Family Joy is visiting the 29lincolnavenue porch! What I love about Stef is that she is real. She holds nothing back. And, she makes me laugh. I just like her! Today, she is sharing a story of big faith and a bigger God who delights in surprising us!

Blowing Bubbles

My 2yr old son has a new favorite outside hobby, he blows bubbles. It's very exciting for him because I no longer hold the bubbles nor the wand - he has complete control of the bubble making process.

And he's a huge success! He blows a few bubbles shouts with joy, "I did it I did it", smiles big and directs me to his latest accomplishment, "Look big bubbles mom - right there right there - big bubbles".

There is so much excitement over these bubbles I can't help but cheer him on, "yes - I see - big bubbles - YOU DID IT"!

Occasionally he is unsuccessful. All of them end up popping. Yet that does not stop him in the least - the process of making bubbles delights his little soul.

I see his heart - it's swollen with happiness and I wonder why I stopped blowing bubbles. I'm not talking about the sticky mess he's holding in his hands - but real life challenges with a chance of failure on the other side.

Have I grown so comfortable by surrounding myself with feel good easy moments that I do not take risks anymore?

Philippians 4:13 I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.

Last month I grabbed my bubble wand - my desire to write and encourage women for Christ - and started blowing bubbles. I put God at the focus of my blog - not myself. I sent out a few submissions to Christian organizations to be published. I started writing an online bible study.

Some bubbles popped immediately - another greatly received (the contract w/ DaySpring for my card). One even combined with another and ended up becoming a fantastic new opportunity I had not thought possible (contributing to Gather Inspirit blog). In all of the excitement that has happened in 1 month's time - I wildly shouted, "Look - I did it, BIG BUBBLES"!

I encourage you - do not allow the fear of what could might possibly maybe happen prevent you from ever trying!

Pick up your bubble wand and start blowing big bubbles again!

God is the MIGHTY God - not a might God!

Thanks Stef for reminding us of this amazing truth! Be sure to visit Stef and check out her blog Layton Family Joy. I know that you will be encouraged. Not only is she blowing bubbles, but she has agreed to be my roommate at the Relevant Blogging Conference in October. How fun is that?

Looking Forward,

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Chair Time

What chair time is really all about...

My 4 year old and her babysitter were playing a game last Wednesday in my big and cozy chair and a half. The sitter said, "This is a great chair, I just love it." My daughter replied, "This is Mommy's chair. My daddy got it for her. It is where she sits and talks to God." A few minutes later she left to go get a toy and said to the sitter, "Stay there, if God talks to you while I'm gone, you should listen."

Oh sweet Lord! I wonder at times if what I'm saying is making a difference. I praise you that my actions speak louder than my words! And Lord, thank you so much for meeting me each morning in this place. May I always be listening for you to speak, because little ears are too.

Looking Forward,

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Multitude Monday

Counting 1,000 Gifts....

My word for the year is thankfulness, from Colossians 3:16. Each week I am making a thankful list. My goal is to count 1,000 gifts. I pick one or two of these things and post it here, on Multitude Monday. I also link up with Ann Voskamp at A Holy Experience, who hosts a Gratitude Community. Please click the Multitude Monday button at the bottom of this post to visit with Ann and the rest of the Community and be encouraged.

#238 Having a mother who fears the Lord, prays for me daily,
and loves me no matter what.

#239 Becoming just like her.


Friday, May 7, 2010

One Million Arrows

Watch this....

Read this....

Join This....

One Million Arrows Blog Tour May 23-30 2010 right here at 29lincolnavenue.

Looking Forward,

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Are You Weary?

Hebrews 12:2-3

fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

For consider Him who has endured such hostility by sinners against Himself, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.

Today I am laying aside my sin that easily entangles, fixing my eyes on Jesus, and considering that I will not grow weary and lose heart. I am thinking about Him and how He was with His disciples. How he walked everywhere with them, and how really they were like children. Their constant care and training were exhausting. But the joy set before Him was their salvation...and mine.

I am so easily thrown off course. Lately by fatigue and weariness. But considering Him - all that He endured and knowing He understands bone tiredness brings me hope and the strength I need!

Looking Forward,

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Chair Time

Prayer for me is like breathing. I find myself in a constant conversation with the Lord. I know, that if my kids know anything about me is that I pray, a lot. Lately, the prayers have been out loud and more desperate, "Oh Lord, please help me, I need You to make it through this day!" I believe firmly that prayer works. God hears my call, and more importantly that I am the one transformed as I do. I could write a good many things about prayer and the legacy I want to leave my children. But, I heard this quote the other day and it truly sums up my heart. I am not one to say something that others have said better. So I thought I would share this with you:

"We must live for God out of the prayer closet if we want to meet God in the prayer closet. We must bless God with praying lives if we want to have God's blessing in the prayer closet. We must do God's will in our lives if we want to have God's ear in the prayer closet. .....If we want to have have God's presence in the prayer closet, God must have us out of the prayer closet. There is no way of praying to God, except by living to God. The prayer closet is not a confessional, simply, but the hour of holy communion, of high and sweet communication, and of intense intercession."
E.M.Bounds from his chapter on Prayerless Praying

My heart, my passion, my prayer is that my life outside the prayer closet will make my time in it filled with sweeter communication and intense intercession. And, that as little eyes are watching the line between the two will be hard to see.

Looking Forward,

Monday, May 3, 2010

Multitude Monday

Counting 1,000 gifts...

#223 Celebrating 4 years of princesses, twirling, and passion.