Declare Conference 2016 #DigitalEvangelist(s)

The end of this month is the Declare Conference for Christian Women Bloggers. This year will be the fifth year I’ve attended. I look forward to it in so many ways. The sense of community, vitality and the fellowship of Christian sisters is so full of meaning to me.

This year’s theme: Equipping women to be Jesus online #DigitalEvangelist  is something I crave for my words, my life- to be the best reflection of Jesus to others that I can be; (I’m not always successful by a long shot- maybe I should phrase it this way- sometimes I get it right).

 In his book, Paul for Everyone- The Pastoral Letters, Tom Wright makes a statement about different types of teaching that Paul is relating to Timothy in 1Timothy 1. I think he expresses exactly what I’ve been thinking about being a #DigitalEvangelist.

“In it, he (Paul) has in mind two basic types of teaching.  

One goes round and round in circles, picking up interesting ideas and theories and playing with them endlessly- though not necessarily having a very detailed understanding of what such things might really be all about.  

The other has a clear aim, cuts out anything that gets in the way of it, and go straight to the point. “

Paul tells Timothy in verse 5:  “What we aim at in our teaching is the love that comes from a pure heart, a good conscience and sincere faith.”

 I think that this verse describes the #DigitalEvangelist in all of us because we are teaching the world about Jesus.

Regardless of what we write about- that reflection of Jesus from us to the world comes shining through and in revealing Him to the world we are teaching whether we realize it or not. And that is what I hope we all take home with us- just what it means to be a #DigitalEvangelist.

It’s all about Him. That’s all. 

 

This year in anticipation of the conference and to introduce ourselves we have been asked to answer a few questions. Here are my answers.

Looking forward to meeting you all!

1. If we were meeting in person, how would you introduce yourself? (job, family, career, ministry, where you live … share whatever details come to mind)

I can give you a dissertation on paper, however, when I meet someone  or I’m introducing myself to a group verbally most of what I’d like to say escapes me.

Hello, my name is Nancy. I’m 63 years old. I’ve been a wife for 44 years, a mother for almost 40 years, a MIL for 16 years, Nana for almost 14 years. We have 10 grands and we live in Rockwall, TX near the lake. I worked as a nurse for over 30 years; 16 of those years in the schools. It was my calling for a season; now I’m called to family. I have seen God work in many ways in my life and it always comes back to total dependence on Him.

Trivia round: I went to 14 different schools from kindergarten to graduation from high school and I lived in Germany for two years as a child.

2. What is your favorite thing to write and why?

It would appear that I love to write out my opinions and share them; however, when I started writing as a teen, my first experience was with poetry- free verse. That has always been where my thoughts go first and what flows most easily from my pen.

3. What is your favorite thing to read and why? (If this question is too broad for you avid readers, what’s a favorite book or blog you’ve read lately?)

My favorite genre is Scifi and fantasy- but I haven’t seen much that I would consider quality in recent years.  Next is historical fiction, history and poetry. Everyday reading includes blogs by friends. I suppose the reason I like those kind of books is the escape-ism. Growing up I needed that escape valve and I still do from time to time. I’m reading “The Boys in the Boat” right now- it’s about the US Olympic rowing team in the 1936 Berlin Olympics. 

4. If you could choose to do anything for a day, what would it be?

That’s a toughie. The first thing that comes to mind is finding a cabin in the mountains in East Tennessee where I could sit on the porch in ideal weather and just soak in the world around me and write. The second is to spend the day in the pool with all of the grands. And then, finally it would be to go to this little village that I love in England and walk the trails and spend time chatting with the locals. Obviously, this was a hard question for me. 

5. What is one thing you love about your blog and one thing you’d like to improve?

What I like is to put the words out there. I’d just like to do it more regularly. What I’d like to improve is to make it more photogenic without it looking like a travel brochure.

6. [Lightening Round] Would you rather …

  • Read on Kindle or paperback?  Paperback – I’m a highlighter queen. Although a kindle at night works.
  • Drink coffee or tea? Tea mostly, but coffee when I’m feeling groggy (like every morning)
  • Go to a musical or a movie? either
  • Vacation at the beach or the mountains? beach in summer, mountains in winter
  • Have an exciting night out or a relaxing night in? depends on how tired I am
  • Watch sports, play sports, or no sports? Watch some sports, baseball and soccer to be specific. Watch the Winter Olympics. Not football. Period.  And, I swim.

 Curious?    http://declareconference.com 

 

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Five Minute Friday: Risk

Now there’s a risky word if ever I heard one. The very thought brings up fear, anticipation, joy, annoyance and a whole other bag of words most of us would rather not think about.

Take it a step further, risk is what propels us to move from the spot we are on to the next spot… we risk it all to stay. we risk it all to go. We take a risk every moment of every day, it’s like breathing. Yet, there is so much fear attached to that little four letter word.

When I think of it, Jim Elliot’s famous quote comes to mind: “He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose. “

In finding the exact quote to paste hereI came upon another by Jim that I think is a perfect definition of the word risk. In talking of Stephen, who was martyred- the man who will not act until he knows all will never act at all.”

Ok that’s my 5.

Ding.

Surrender 2016

“Surrendering your will to God lies at the very core of whatever grieves you today.” – Wayne Stiles

I copied this quote a while back. I’ve come back to it from time to time- not quite ready to move on. It’s haunting me, dogging me, taunting me, pushing me, stretching me, teaching me.

What?

How does that work?

Am I galvanized in the grief of a lost relationship? Holding on? To what? What once was, but is not now? Or to what I thought once was?

But what never actually was?

Or was it simply for a season and I’m reluctant to let go?

How does that connect to the surrender of my will, which, by the way, I’ve done over and over again.

Why, you ask?

Isn’t it a once and done?

Shouldn’t it be?

Ahh… evidently not for me.

Because I keep grabbing it back in selfish ignorance and then in those moments of lucid vision (light bulb moment) I gingerly give it back to God like it’s a live wire I want nothing to do with anymore.

Haven’t I learned? Shouldn’t I have learned by now?  Shouldn’t we all have learned?

The reality is that learning to surrender completely (meaning it’s finished when you’ve surrendered), is a process. We give up, give in. Easily. Readily.  Then we reach out with our grubby hands and hold on for all we are worth. Because we keep forgetting that surrender is freedom and life.

In Christ.

Alone.

How do you get on with surrender? Is it important to you? Difficult or easy?

Take a look at the exchange between Jeremiah and King Zedekiah and the fulfillment of prophecy from the Lord  in Jeremiah 37-39:6.

I SURRENDER ALL.