welcome to the hike!

Working out the call!

I currently living in Millersburg or as God whispered in me ear four years ago in PA, "the land of my Fathers!" MILLERS - burg! OK! The best way to describe my life of late, is simply "Pastor-at-Large" I live "outside the box" of our usual expectation of life, family, employment and even culture. I live, breathe, and weave around a four county area as a local missionary and have learned of so many supportive faith communities. I meet people who contact me where they are in their 'hike 'o life."

The hats I wear are that of Life Coach, Writer, Speaker, Retreat Facilitator, Pastoral Supply, Prayer Counselor and well, whatever God calls on me to do (I actually get paid to do all of these things, which is awesome, unless you are helping me with my books!) I also work to "tent-make my mission work" as a church secretary for a sweet fellowship pastored by one of my favorite seminary prof's.

So what do I want to be when I grow up? Stay tuned! The goals are big and staying solvent month by month is a huge victory, but as I see my own heart and others hearts change and grow in my daily walk, I realize, I am not working for treasures on earth....I have direct deposit above. Guess that's a pretty sweet ride! Lacing up my hiking boots...on the hike o' life!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

God Stories, mine, yours and the world's!

A funny thing happened to me this week.

I kept making plans.

But God kept breaking in and taking me to places I didn't even know I was supposed to be until that moment!

As you read about my rambling life I am leading right now,  I want to ask you,

 Are you open to let God change your plans as you go along? 

Are you trying to be open to see what He is doing?

We all can be so quick to ask God where He is when we think we need him.

Sometimes we are just like the masses on Palm Sunday wanting a hero to come and rescue them from the short term trials of our lives. Overthrow the government, relieve our suffering NOW, and when those things don't happen we get angry with the superhero instant solution God, because He could do those things - but He doesn't.

But what we don't realize is God is caring about our long term understanding or what this world is, what sin and selfishness is, and what He is preparing us for: 






Many of you know of my sister's journey for the last two years with a rare cancer called leimyosarcoma.  (Next time she updates her blog - I will link it here as well.)  She is marching so far successfully through her second round of chemo in the last twelve months and has also had 3 surgeries since that day in February 2009 when her doctor first discovered that first tumor during a routine exam. 

I only mention Marcia, Matt, Clay and Jordan today, after a friend said to me he was amazed at their peace and steadiness on this roller coaster ride they are on.  PRAISE THE LORD! Yep!

As we have prayed and prayed for God to have HIS WAY and even as we keep asking God our heart's desire on this - "TAKE THIS CANCER AWAY - PLEASE LORD - NOW LORD" .

The cancer has not yet gone all away, BUT GOD KEEPS SHOWING UP!  FAITH KEEPS GETTING STRONGER, PEOPLE KEEP REVEALING THEIR LOVE and we keep having SMALL VICTORIES and BIG LOVE all revealed in incredible ways.

I have made the comment many times regarding this situation, that I keep on praying for miracles, and while the big one (total elimination of all tumors and evidences of cancers) has not yet happened, we keep praying for it - and in the meantime - we have seen a million other miracles happen. 

GOD IS IN THIS JOURNEY and for that WE ARE MADE TO LOVE HIM, BETTER UNDERSTAND HIM and appreciate HIS presence on each day!  (P.S. - Sis has scans and meeting with doc's again in the next 10 days so we too covet your prayers on this!)

I went to the library this week and as I scanned the shelf for some books, this just seemed to say "PICK ME"!  It is the book God Stories by Jennifer Skiff.  This book is a collection of testimonies from people all around the world, telling of their encounters with God in their lives.  Some of these stories are posted on her web site which can be reached at

This is an amazing book and helps us understand - that God is there with us - are we willing to SEE?

So my stories - I could go tell you about 20 from this week - but will limit it to one!  Wednesday after work, I had planned to go to Ashland to watch a dear friend play in a basketball all-star game.  I also was aware of someone in the community who was having a second surgery in a week and was filled with a compassion for this family.  As the weather forecast was dicey that morning I just prayed, "God help me to be wise about my day, put me in your hands and led me." 

Well you might say "all hail broke loose" right when I had wanted to leave for the basketball game and the line of storms and two tornado sightings were in my traveling path.  I took that as a NO to plan A.  Then I got a text from another friend who also had a increased concern for the family with the second surgery.  She was unexpectedly getting off work early and wondered if I wanted to head up to see the family in still waiting to hear news from the surgery?  The weather that direction by now was clear and sunny.  So, we traveled north.  At first we couldn't find the family, but as we were leaving the waiting area to plan our next move, they were coming out of the ICU unit having just seen their family member after surgery!  The nurses had kicked them out for an hour at shift change, and at just the right time (thanks GOD) we stumbled into the picture to bring respite from a long day!

After our hour in the hospital cafeteria, we were told you must go in and say hi.  We certainly didn't expect this, but obediently went in.  Our friend was clear and so glad to see us, as we offering a prayer of praise for God bringing them through this storm - I can honestly say it was the sweetest five minutes I have enjoyed for a long time! 


Just want close with this scripture on your Lenten JOURNEY - it is from Jeremiah 29:  11-13

For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.  Then you will call upon Me and go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart




A prayer -

LORD, we confess all to often we question you with the WHYs of life, but we don't invite You into the what is right now!  WE WANT OUR SOLUTIONS - help us just seek and find YOUR PRESENSE.  WE PRAY for our own awareness, for those we know in the storms of NOW to see the rainbow's of YOUR work of KINGDOM AND ETERNITY.  We pray for that family, who is still dealing with hospitals, for all those walking through cancer and espiecally for those YOU are CALLING us to pray for.  HELP __________ to see YOUR loving hand in their life right now as we continue to pray for ___________ to be open you YOUR LOVE THIS DAY.  IN JESUS' MIGHTY NAME AMEN!

I would be eager to hear your GOD STORIES - and FYI - I don't regulary get to see the person I was praying for - but was THRILLED TO SEE THEM - and sense God's work in them since I began to earnestly pray!  YAY! 

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