I have discovered over the years, that life can be challenging. God desires to sustain us as we look for "splashes of His grace" every day. My desire is that through posts, or book reviews, you may find something that points you to the grace of God, and that He ultimately will make a difference in your life.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Beyond Ordinary by Justin and Trisha Davis

Ordinary can be defined as "of no special quality or interest; commonplace; unexceptional; somewhat inferior or below average; mediocre." Justin and Trisha Davis, authors of Beyond Ordinary, believe that "ordinary" is the greatest danger to any marriage. Without attention and effort, a marriage is destined for ordinary or worse.  As a young married couple, Justin and Trisha never dreamed that their marriage would take the direction it did.  This book is the story of their life together -- the near end of their marriage -- and God's restoration of it. 

Written in a "tag-team" format, Justin and Trisha take turns in each chapter, sharing their side of the story, giving the reader both the male and female perspective.  As a minister's wife myself, I could relate to their story, and the challenges being in the ministry can create, however, these same struggles can be experienced by couples no matter what their "professions" are.

Each chapter takes you a little further on their journey as a married couple, revealing the pitfalls that allowed them to drift into ordinary and then into brokenness. They offer wisdom and personal insight separately and then together, before ending each chapter with "Questions" that can be answered alone and/or with your spouse.

Is their marriage perfect now?  Is it free from struggle?  They are the first to admit it is not. God has transformed them though, and as they daily seek to live extraordinary lives individually for Jesus, He is enabling them to have an extraordinary marriage with His help. They would want you to know that "extraordinary" takes work, but it is worth it!

I would definitely recommend this book to those who have experienced brokenness in their marriage, as well as those whose marriages haven't reached the breaking point. It is an honest and transparent view of a real marriage.

Because of their life experience, Justin and Trisha founded RefineUs Ministries to help build healthy marriages and families.

If you would like to see a short video trailer about the book click here. This book has been published by Tyndale Publishers.  For more information about this book or Tyndale, please visit their website at http://www.tyndale.com 

I received a complimentary copy of this book to review from Tyndale Blog Network in exchange for an honest review.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Isn't It Just Like God!

Yesterday I received our itinerary for India. I wasn't exactly sure what I was going to be doing, but I knew it may involve working some with the pastor's wives there.  I know some of what is "scheduled" may change, as those who have gone on mission trips know, but what I saw sent a wave of "panic" to my heart.  I am not a public speaker -- it is way out of my comfort zone -- and I was really hoping that maybe I could get away with a single sharing time, and then be an encourager the rest of the time -- a help in general. What I found out was that I will be speaking/teaching at two or three different pastor's wives events (probably a few sessions at each event), teaching at a "widows prayer meeting", and teaching children!!

I enjoy writing (where I can write, edit, rewrite, and then not see the possible "confusion" on the reader's face while "hearing" what I have to say!), but speak in front of a group?  I fumble around, and then sit down and realize I forgot to say the main point I intended to get across! 

The Lord and I had a discussion this morning.  It went something like this:  "Lord, I feel like Moses.  You called him to a task and to speak for you and he questioned his ability to speak.  I feel the same way!  I know you were angry with him and I don't want Your anger directed toward me, so give me the encouragement I need today. Give me the faith to trust you to do something I KNOW I cannot do." (Well, there was also some wrestling and tears thrown in too!) I went on with my morning time with the Lord.

I decided to be a part of Beth Moore's Living Proof 2013 Siesta Scripture Memory Team this year. (Go to http://blog.lproof.org/2013/01/2013-siesta-scripture-memory-team-verse-1.html if you'd like more information on how you can participate too!)  One of the Scriptures on the cover of the memory verse spiral was Joshua 1:9.  I knew that verse had something to do with being "strong and courageous" so I decided to turn to it and read it.  For some reason, instead of turning to Joshua, I thought it said Jeremiah 1:9 (That's what a menopausal mind can do!) and turned there. This is what I read:

"Then the Lord reached out His hand, touched my mouth and told me:
Look, I have filled your mouth with My words."
Isn't that just like God?  He pointed me to another one of His servants who said, "...Oh no, Lord God! Look, I don't know how to speak....." (Jeremiah 1:6)  I know God uses those who feel inadequate because then HE certainly gets the glory. 
"But He said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness." Therefore, I will most gladly boast all the more about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may reside in me.   So because of Christ, I am pleased in weaknesses, in insults, in catastrophes, in persecutions, and in pressures.
For when I am weak, then I am strong."
So today I start seeking out what I need to share with these ladies and children.  I may indeed write it all out, so I can write, edit, and rewrite over the next 3 days!  Then I'll close my eyes as I speak to them so I won't see the confusion on their faces!!  Ok, maybe I won't close my eyes -- if I do, how will I be able to "read" what I have written!
Do pray for this weak, insecure pastor's wife over the next couple of weeks!  Looking forward to sharing what great things the Lord has done!

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

A Fresh Beginning

A New Year!  A Clean Slate!  A Fresh Beginning!  No matter what you call it, January 1st is here and with it comes a chance to start over.  So, once again, I am attempting to do a better job with this blog. I will still post the book reviews, but I want it to be more.  Thus, the name change.  
I call it "A Splash of Grace" because I have come to appreciate that I need God's grace EVERY day to survive!  Some days I need a cupful poured over me, but most days I need showers of it!  Oh yeah, and there are those days I need to DIVE into it!  I pray that what I write in this blog may be a "splash" of His grace from me to you.
The past year had it's joyful moments, but the Lord also allowed me to travel down some difficult paths personally. It was a hard year, a disappointing one in many ways. There were times when I felt the Lord was very near, and other times when I couldn't find Him at all.  
If I could turn back the pages of last year and write a few different chapters in my life's book I probably would, but at the same time, I have learned so much about myself. I have learned who IS God. (and it's not me!)  I have learned that I have an enemy that delights in tormenting me. And I have also learned anew, that God loves me and is FOR me. He has purpose in all things He allows.
I don't know all that you have gone through this past year, and I don't know what lies ahead for either of us, but one thing I do know -- God will be here with us and for us! The scripture I begin my new year with is this:

"[Because of] the Lord's faithful love we do not perish, for His mercies never end
They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness!
 I say: The Lord is my portion, therefore I will put my hope in Him.
The Lord is good to those who wait for Him, to the person who seeks Him."
Lamentations 3:22-25

Will you join me on this journey? 
Let us daily walk "in the Light",
seeking the Lord and waiting for Him.

 He will be good to us!