Thursday, October 31, 2013

Reformation Day- 2013- Counting gifts

Outside gifts-

Fall sedum in the old bird bath

Zebra grass waving in the windy sunlight

Inside gift-

Smiley face pumpkin

Heart gift-

Walt Waiser's prayer encouragement to the Southeastern District

and I write and write and write…….

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

The Gift of Joy- Women's Retreat

    A Saturday with some teachable heart women in Stafford, Virginia.
A women's retreat at Living Hope Lutheran Church.
Time for sharing and growing and maybe a new lens to see their own lives.
How does God show faithfulness- when I forget to be faithful?
Why is it so challenging to remember His Goodness to me?
Why does He seem so distant sometimes?
Can I begin to see Him everyday?

Some frost on the grass and a chilly start to the day.

We spent some time viewing two sessions of the Ann Voskamp Counting gifts videos.
Opening the door to some beautiful life framing.
Ann- a woman who just speaks normally in poetry.

A wonderful lunch and getting to visit with old friends and some new friends.

Then some time for crafting after lunch.

Some friends from a book club that had read
 1000 Gifts and came together to the retreat.

All sorts of materials for creativity
And a successful project to leave with - 
to start the journey of Counting Gifts

Some of the Joy in a Box embellishments from Ann Voskamp's blog-

Talking and Sharing
Singing and Worship

The retreat was a gift from the Pastor's wife - Nancy Rueter-
 to the women of the congregation and community
in honor of her mother.

That she could pay it forward-
 to be an encourager and equipper of women
 to live their mission here on earth.

I give thanks for Nancy--
her heart for women-
 and the families and friends they love and serve.

Another community of women with a shared experience-
coming together to see something out of the ordinary
 in our ordinary days.

Revelation 7:12
 “Amen! Blessing and glory and wisdom, 
Thanksgiving and honor and power and might, 
Be to our God forever and ever. Amen.”

What is your "take-away"-
 from a shared group experience lately?

Friday, October 25, 2013

Doors to Prayer

With grace- 
joined to lead the women of
 New Hope Church, Lorton, Virginia
 at a Women's Retreat in Reston, Virginia.
The beautiful setting of the retreat 
showed much care and planning 
for the women attending.

A Welcome Setting

Simple and Beautiful Table Decor

Leader- Karenna Rowenhorst

Dynamic Worship music

Visual prayers 

A Thomas Merton Prayer Board
 by Creative Faith Artist Diane Marra

Our Time together Opened these
Doors to Prayer:

Pay Attention
Be childlike
Help Lord!
Watch and Give Thanks

The creators of an awesome prayer room

A Prayer Loom

Quiet reflective setting

Time to listen for His voice

Praying in Color

Experiential Time

Stories of the Blessings of the Prayer Journey

The prayer Panel- Answering tweets with prayer questions

Another sojourner shares prayer visuals

With thanksgiving for this community of women,
 a prayer ascends that the Holy Spirit 
meets each and every woman-
 right where they are.

"O, give thanks unto the Lord,
 for His mercy endures forever."
1 Chronicles 16:34

What door into prayer
 might you explore today?

Monday, October 21, 2013

Build Your Kingdom Here in the SED

A Prayer for the
 Professional Church Workers Conference
of the Southeastern District-LCMS.
 based on lyrics from
 “Build Your Kingdom Here”
 by Rend Collective Experiment

Lord God, 
come set Your rule and reign in the hearts of everyone at the Professional Church Workers Conference of the Southeastern District.  Be the Master of attitudes, the Master of conversations, the Master of actions, the Master of all we are.  May there be more of You and less of self in all of our lives.  Holy Spirit, invade us now.  We need Your power to be a part of building Your kingdom here.  Set Your Church on fire.  May the darkness fear as we serve You with all our hearts, all our souls, all our minds, and with all of our strength.  No force of hell can stop how Your beauty and grace changes hearts.  Fill us with the love of Christ!  We want to set Christ apart as Lord and seek Your kingdom first.  We hunger and thirst for You, Lord God, King of the universe.  We lay down our lives for Your cause, Your will to be done.  Unveil our eyes and help us see You more clearly than ever before, Your desires, Your dreams for Your people.  Build Your kingdom here, we pray, in the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.  Amen.

(song rewritten into this prayer by Dawn Boyd)

Where do you see hope
 in Kingdom building
 in the Southeastern District- LCMS?

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Open Gates

Thinking these days about the care of women in ministry and those married to professional church workers. In preparing for a professional church workers conference, I have a heart for all women in ministry, and as the equipped saints, that is all inclusive. But, this upcoming event brings together the leaders, those trusted with equipping the priesthood of all believers. We spend alot of time comparing ourselves to each other, and perhaps backed into corners afraid to express our failings and discouraged hearts. How can we be the wind under the breath of the Holy Spirit as encouragers to each other?

Can sharing where we meet the Lord in prayer bring hope? Can new prayer tools reopen the gate to conversations waiting in the wings of our days? What happens in the holding of the hand of a fellow believer in prayer, steeped in intercession?  Does one connection make a difference in how we live the day to day burden of ministry? How do we create safe havens for expressing the hills and valleys of our journey?

Fascinated by these verses in Galatians-in the Message

  • careful exploration of who you are
  • careful exploration of the work you have been given
  • sink yourself into what you have been given
  • don't be impressed with yourself
  • don't compare
  • take responsibility
  • do your creative best with your own life

Galatians 6:4-5

The Message (MSG)
4-5 Make a careful exploration of who you are and the work you have been given, and then sink yourself into that. Don’t be impressed with yourself. Don’t compare yourself with others. Each of you must take responsibility for doing the creative best you can with your own life.

Dear Heavenly Father,
 May we be the gateway encouragers to each other. May we seek your face as the audience of ONE. May the hope that we have in Jesus be the doorway into prayer conversations with you. May we continue to use prayer tools that give meaning to this journey and help us to see the writing of your design on each of our lives. In the name of Jesus. Amen.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Prayer Rest Stops

Just got back from a 24 hour retreat at Richmond Hill, 
in Richmond, Virginia.
 Time with the Spiritual Life Team
 for the Southeastern District.
 A great group of mentors-
such great teachers about prayer. 

Always something soul centering in the time there. 
 Some beautiful fall colors and 
resting with some prayer thoughts along the way.

Which photo and quote speaks to your heart today?

Blessed days to each of you,


Saturday, October 12, 2013

Living Life as Prayer --Canvas

Getting ready 
 to lead a Women's retreat next weekend.
  Nothing makes me feel more unprepared,
 then to lead others,
 when I often feel like I move blindly.
 So it is only then that can I step out.  
You, Dear Lord, will give the gifts,
 fashion the words together 
 that may bless your people.
 Praying for those attending-
 that your Word may work alive in the hearts
 of those who will be coming to be together
 in community.

A canvas with the retreat theme-
Doors into Prayer----
 and my heart theme-
  Living Life as Prayer.

Tissue paper from a new pair of my husband's shoes.
  great background color
old Ideals magazines for layers,
 stencil paints, stamping on more tissue paper
 vintage buttons,
crochet flowers (Michael's)
and the beautiful crochet hanging piece
 from my friend Jan-

And cut put pieces from
 Pottery Barn catalogs with the Sizzix die
 printed up Living Life as Prayer
 on the computer
Added some pulled burlap strings to dangle on the sides
 and Mod Podge covers all with love