What happens when three (Anita Renfroe, Melissa Spoelstra & Mia Koehne) ill and sick women roll out of bed, jump on an airplane, slap on some makeup and lipstick and deliver a night of learning laughter stories and music? Lives change!
Melissa had a days head start on feeling a little better, but Anita and I rolled out of our beds, sucked it up, got on a plane and we all did what we were created to do.
I can already hear people saying “Mia, you need to rest, Mia sometimes God has to knock you down to let you know you need to slow down” to which I say. "I hear you, but do you hear me?”
Honestly, I don't think people want me to publicly post and write about all the times I rest during the week? If I did, the readers would probably tell me to get moving and stop slacking!!
You see, what I do is what I was designed to do, and not necessarily what others were designed to do. Lord knows I could NOT hold down a 9-5 job or a 7am-9pm job like my husband.
So, for me, calling in sick, not jumping on an airplane and staying home if I am able to move for my 1-3 day a week “job” is NOT an option and for that I am thankful. WHY? Because of what I witnessed AGAIN at an event I went to even though I was sick, on meds and barely able to function.
A women came up to me and said “I want you to know, I was contemplating suicide. Someone called me and said they had an extra ticket, so I came. Then you shared and sang a song and reminded me that I am not alone. Thank you.”
THIS IS WHY I DON’T STAY IN BED. This women in her pain reminded me that calling in sick is not an option. The doctor who wanted to write me a note so I could stay home, who thought I was crazy when I said “It’s not an option” ... kinda makes me chuckle.
It is times and instances like this when I am reminded that what I do is life or death ... and by the grace of God I am reminded of that weekly.
Sadly, this women’s story is not new, I hear these words often, but it’s when I am so very tired, when I have absolutely nothing, when I am worn down and all I have is the strength and grace of God that I realize more fully how powerful His Spirit is in His weak servants that simply show up.
I am glad that I have people that fervently pray for me. Those prayers are heard as evidenced everyday of my life especially when I am ill. I love that I have people that “get me” and walk through the trenches to deliver the Gospel of Jesus Christ and hope to the lost and suicidal.
I am thankful for a husband that loves me deeply, sacrificially, and unconditionally sends me out weekly to shine a light on Jesus. He is the best!!
And to my sick ("crazy, cool and insane" as defined by Urban Dictionary) chicks, I'm so honored to serve alongside them in our weakness so that the name of Jesus continues to be lifted high!
May you, too, press on to be a light even in your weakness in the wonderful and creative way that God has designed you to.
If you have read my writings in the past or followed my adventures for any length of time, you may have noticed that I love to hike, I love to push my limits. Pretty much, every time time that I get out on the trail, God has a word for me. Today, was no exception. I hit the trailhead early this morning to beat the 100+ degree heat and powered up the first incline.
I planned my trip. I would go up the mountain down and follow the long trail around the mountain before heading back. Immediately, I heard God say, "No, you are not to go on the long trail today." For me, hearing His voice takes form in those words that jump into my mind, invade my Spirit and move my heart and gut. It is a voice that He has trained me well to hear, to know and to discern that it is Him and knowing this voice has taught me to obey.
Upon hearing my new directive, I said ok, I will just go up the mountain and down to my prayer spot before I make the decent back down to my car. Again, I heard Him say, "No, you may only go to the top, sit there and then head right back down" To this, I simply said ok, makes no sense to me, but I will do what you say, you must have your reasons.
In my life, I have found a few different reasons why God gives me specific directions. A few of them being:
1. For my good and wellbeing (Jeremiah 29:11)
2. Gives me opportunities to obey (Deuteronomy 5:27; Psalm 119:34;
3. Trains me to recognize and know His voice, so the next time He speaks for my safety and well being, I will know His voice and not hesitate to obey. (John 10:4; John 10:27)
To give you a little background info, that I neglected to take into account at the time, my hike today was only the 3rd hike in the past 2 weeks. Typically, I am on the trail at least 5 times a week. I had taken time off from exercise because I was battling illness and my body was simply worn and fatigued. During those times, I do not like to push it, so I rest.
While I was feeling great today, ready to take on the world, what I didn't know is that about half way in, my body would remind me that I am not where I was two weeks ago. I became very tired, very quickly and by the time I nearly reached the top my lungs were crying for rest. Had I pushed myself to go on, I would have been much worse for the wear.
Those words that God gave me as I began the accent and made my plans, were not only words for me to obey, and discern His voice, but they were for my well being. God knew I would tucker out. God knew that on my own, I probably would have kept going and been out several miles without the ability to turn back. Would I have survived?... sure, but the joy of knowing and being reminded that God has my back in the littlest of things, strengthened my faith to know that He has my back in the difficult things as well, those times when I feel like my world is caving in.
He knows the plans He has for me and they are good. And it's not just me...It's for you too, you who are called according to His purposes!! He knows the plans He has for YOU, and friend, they are oh, so good!
Press in to listen. Press in to obey. Press in to learn the sound of His voice in your life. Be quick to listen friends and don't delay. Each moment we delay our obedience, the closer we are to stepping the other way, finding an excuse or simply forgetting what He said in the first place.. Let's keep our footing sure, stand firm in the promises of God, trust Him for our good and share the truth of the Gospel with those who so desperately need it and need to see us living it.
Let us be faithful to listen to the small stuff, SO THAT we may be fit to be faithful when the BIG directives come. (Luke 16:10)
I love you in the Lord, Mia
Christian Denominations handle Mary (the mother of Jesus) in different ways. In some denominations, she is given a lot of play, many props and huge kuddos while in other denominations she is given a mere high five and an "atta girl" and "by the way, thanks, for birthing the King of the world."
Wherever you are in the spectrum, let's meet in the middle and just stand in awe of the example she was and is to us as Christians today.
I am going to chew this passage apart in three (but, I feel an itching for more) segments. So come back each week as we take time to simply marvel at our Great God through the woman He chose to be the mother of His only begotten son.
"In the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a town in Galilee, to a virgin pledged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. The angel went to her and said, “Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you.”
There is a lot going on here, but I will just share with you a few of the elements that jumped out at me.
"Mary was greatly troubled at his words and wondered what kind of greeting this might be." She was greeted with the title of being highly favored by God. In her humility, I can only imagined this young girl wanting to turn around and check to see if anyone else was in the room. Maybe the angel was talking to someone else and got confused.
How many times do we as redeemed Christians walk around thinking the same thing when a call is placed on our lives and a task is placed directly in our path.... "God? You call ME favored? You are with ME?" then we look over our shoulder convinced He is talking to someone else because we feel unworthy and we convince ourselves that there is someone more qualified and better suited to do the task at hand. The key is not in what we incorrectly think about ourselves, but in the truth of what God knows about us. He is with us. And if He is for us WHO can be against us?!?!
Just as Mary was troubled, wondering about this greeting and call on her life, she was immediately comforted by the words of the angel...words which we still hear today...words that can calm the storm...."Do not be afraid"
Guess what? He is not calling you to the mighty task of birthing the Savior of the world. It's already been asked and answered, done and accomplished. But, He may be calling you to other Kingdom building work. "Do not be afraid." These words come straight from the heart of God. Know today that He speaks this truth over you.
Do not be afraid. The Lord, your God is with you. He goes before you, He is beside you, He is in the rear guarding your ways. Do not be afraid. You, as a child of God and follower of Jesus Christ are highly favored. You are a friend of God.
Take the example that Mary gave and be comforted sweet friend.
I love you in the Lord and I look forward to week two with you.
Feel free to leave your comments and insights.
Because the daily temps are well into the 100's here in Phoenix, AZ where I live, my hiking schedule in the summer has my alarm going off at 4:30 am so that I can be on the trail by 5am. Three days during the week, I meet a friend at the trail head so I have to be on time, but then there are days like today....
Today, the alarm went off, no one was waiting for me and I hit the snooze button about four times before I mustered enough energy to get out of bed. Finally, around 5:30am, I got up, got moving and was on the trail at 6am.
As I kept hearing and seeing news of the Abducted Nigerian school girls and the call to action, I caught myself thinking "But, what can I do?" It was easy to go through my day, listen to the news, watch the different social media stories and simply scroll on past it without feeling a sense of responsibility at all.
I believe my lack of sense came from an overwhelming sense of helplessness and the reality that I can't really do anything to help them anyway. Then , like He always does, the Lord reminded me that He has equipped me with the most powerful weapon in the world. PRAYER. I can pray. And I call other to pray as well.
There is power in the name of Jesus. I believe this. I know this. I believe that there is no other than by which we are saved, eternally and temporarily.
I believe that that God hears the cries of His people and can save. I believe that as we cry out in the name of Jesus, he hears and responds. Pray.....Pray....Pray!!
"So Lord in Your mercy, Hear our prayer. Lord, Save those girls and all those who are in danger there in Nigeria. May their eyes be turned to you, Jesus the one and only. Comfort the mothers, comfort the fathers, comfort the families of all who are suffering. Bring healing to Nigeria. Heal their land in the name of Jesus. Amen and Amen!!"
A collection of writings from a life based on the truth that about midnight anything can happen.
As an imperfect servant of the Lord, I often feel I am fumbling my way through life, looking upward for guidance and outward to love. So, I write about it, to break up the noise in my head.