Tag Archives: Ministry

I’m Teaching a Seminar!

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spiritualjourney

 

The Desire

It started when I was a teenager. I would lie awake at night and imagine myself teaching a group of students about something very important. I was engaging and funny—but not silly—and by the end of the presentation, I knew I had a made a difference.

When I told my mom about it, she assured me that it was not common for people to fantasize about teaching in front of large groups. It figures; I never seemed to do anything normal. But it did make me wonder if this was a “God thing:” something He was laying on my heart.

While I don’t feel called to be a full-time teacher, I still find myself dreaming of teaching, speaking, and instructing on some level. (I have utmost respect for all our amazing teachers and cannot fathom how they have the patience to persevere in light of school politics and standardized testing. May God bless you!)

 

The Reality

Finally, this year, I’ll see this vision start to become a reality. I will be teaching my first seminar at the Tallahassee Christian College and Training Center (my alma mater) on November 19, 2016!

The class, “Navigating Your Spiritual Journey,” is based on all the research I’ve done as I continue to write my book, Girls with Gusto. We’ll dive into what I call the eight major steps of the spiritual journey, from salvation to becoming the person God made us to be. This course will be heavily based on Scripture and, since we’ll be talking about the spiritual journey in general, it will be applicable for both guys and gals, from new believers to the seasoned Bible student.

As I prepare for this class, I’m beginning to realize something important. These things God places on our hearts aren’t just our “imagination;” they aren’t “possible outcomes” that we can choose to embrace or deny. They’re words from God that He has spoken over us and imprinted on our hearts. The Bible says that God’s Word goes forth and accomplishes what He desires; it does not return to Him void. (See Isaiah 55:11.) Yes, this primarily refers to God’s Word as captured in the Bible, but it also applies to words He speaks over us directly, in the here and now.

 

May Your Dreams Become Reality

Do you have a vision of yourself teaching, preaching, singing, writing, healing, counseling, etc.? Have you always had a strong or unusual desire to go to a different city or country, to be involved a particular ministry, or to change careers entirely? Do you have an idea for an invention, a new product, or a business?

Seek the Lord! If He put this desire on your heart, He means to fulfill it! (See Proverbs 37:4.) You might have to wait nearly twenty years like I have, but when it happens, you know it’s God’s doing, and you can move forward without hesitation.

May God put you in the center of His will, and may He accomplish what He set out to do with you and through you.


If you’re in the Tallahassee area, please join us for the seminar! Here are the details:

When: Saturday, 11/19/2016, from 9am-1pm
Cost: $15 for personal growth or $25 for .25 semester credit
What to bring: Your Bible and a notebook to write in.

Our goal with this class is to understand the layout of our spiritual journey so we can grow closer to the Lord and become the person He wants us to be. By the end of the class, you’ll be able to determine where you on your journey, what steps are still in front of you, and how you can continue to press forward.

Serving Taco Salads (Recipe!)

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Serving Taco Salads

When you think of ministering to others, what comes to mind? Flying across the world to an impoverished nation? Running an orphanage? Being a full-time preacher? What about taco salads?

Matthew 25:34-40 ‘For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me something to drink; I was a stranger, and you invited Me in; naked, and you clothed Me; I was sick, and you visited Me; I was in prison, and you came to Me.’

Then the righteous will answer Him, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry, and feed You, or thirsty, and give You something to drink? And when did we see You a stranger, and invite You in, or naked, and clothe You? When did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?’

The King will answer and say to them, ‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me.’ (Jesus speaking)

What Jesus is saying here is that He wants a relationship with us, but He also wants us to take the next step and become His hands and feet in the world. When we serve others in God’s name, we are ultimately serving God Himself.

I think most of us understand this idea, but we blow it up a bit, adding our own requirements…it has to be hundreds of miles away; it has to hurt a little, or even a lot, to really count; it has to take a lot of time; etc.

But when we add those requirements to God’s word,  we are just making it harder to serve Him and serve others – and we really end up serving the god of pride.

Practical Service

Matthew 25 is such a beautiful chapter because it shows us more of God’s heart, and it gives us practical ways to share Him with others – just by seeing the needs around us and doing something about it.

When I was growing up, I usually had at least one friend who had a rough home life or didn’t have enough to eat all the time. Then I had friends who wanted to celebrate birthdays, weddings, and baby showers, but they didn’t have a lot of money for food and decorations. And then there were funerals and other sad or difficult times when we needed to gather round and support one another.

You can probably relate to these situations. And what do they all involve? Food! We all need to eat, right?

In these times, you and I get the opportunity to be the real hands and feet of Jesus. The good news is that we don’t have to be professional chefs, or spend a bunch of money, but we do need to be prepared. What would you make if a friend needed your help tomorrow?

From time to time, I’ll share some recipes with you that I’ve found helpful – easy to make and big enough to share.

This first one is…

Mom’s Famous Taco Salad

Ingredients

Taco Salad Ingredients (Photo by Ashley Jones)

Taco Salad

1 lb ground beef
Taco seasoning packet
1 can black beans, drained
1 can whole kernel corn, drained
Shredded cheese
Salsa (fresh is best)
Shredded lettuce
Tortilla chips
Sour cream

Dressing (optional)

Mayonnaise (4-6 tbsp to start)
Chili powder
Cumin

Directions

Brown the ground beef, drain the extra grease, and add the taco seasoning packet. Place the prepared beef in the bottom of the serving bowl. Set aside.

Taco salad in a large serving bowl, surrounded with blue and yellow corn chips. Yummy! (Photo by Ashley Jones)

Make the dressing by mixing several dashes of chili powder and one dash of cumin in about 4-6 tablespoons of mayonnaise. Continue to season until it tastes yummy. (If you serve the taco salad with sour cream, you can skip this step if you prefer.)

Spread the dressing on top of the ground beef. Then add the remaining ingredients in layers: beans, corn, cheese, salsa, and lettuce.

Serve with plenty tortilla chips, sour cream, extra salsa, and other condiments of your choosing, such as guacamole

Most of us take food for granted, assuming our friends and neighbors have as much in the fridge as we do. Sadly, that’s probably not true. According to http://www.feedingamerica.org, in 2013, 49.1 million Americans lived in “food insecure households,” including 33.3 million adults and 15.8 million children. Think of all the folks that would sleep better tonight, with full bellies, if we each shared a taco salad.

If this encourages you, and you do make a taco salad for someone you care about, I’d love to hear about it! Leave me a comment and let me know how you used this as an opportunity to serve and be a blessing to someone else.