Friday, April 07, 2006

Living Beyond Myself ...

Evidently, it takes a Mack Truck, in the form of a tiny, little size negative 1 lady who has a booming voice with one serious Texan twang to hit me over, and over, and over again before I.GET.IT. (Oh, and it backed up over me one more time just to make sure I really DID get it!) Oh, the indignation!!!

Seriously, though... This week, I have been SO doubting myself. As you saw from my post this week about committing myself to Share in a Women's Retreat, I am living WAY beyond myself. For some reason, I can get up with no problemo and sing in front of my church, but THIS??? This is something else. I'll be teaching. I'll need to be accurate. I'll need to have POINTS! I'll need to be SMART! And if that's not enough, SATAN IS AFTER ME!

If you remember Carol's fantastical post where she talks about the Spiritual Attack she and her planning team for her Women's Retreat came under... then you'll soon realize that I am living a MIRRORED life to Carol's!!!

Over the New Years holiday, I prayed that God would use me to serve Him. On January 9th, I sent my PastorMan's wife an email that I would be willing to speak if they ever had a women's retreat. The.VERY.NEXT.DAY she emailed me back all excited that God had answered her prayers. And ever since then, I have been diligently working on what I was going to be speaking on at the retreat.

And Satan has been miffed, to say the least. He has dinged me left and right... here's a small sample of how: In January, my car started making a "clunking" noise under the right wheel well (I drive an Expedition, so if anyone knows what that sound is, I'd love for you to drop me a line). In February, I dropped my son on his face. I had 3 horrible migraines. I hurt myself running into every imaginable thing in my room as I tried to get to my screaming teething son in the middle of the night. My husband cut his finger, making a terrible, bloody mess.

In March, I battled with more migraines. My husband's cousin committed suicide. My son was struck with Rotavirus, keeping us home and in bed for 11 days straight. Then I got it, my husband got it, my mother-in-law got it, and soon, everyone that read my blog got it. Sorry, friends! Then my son got a nasty cold. In April, my husband was smacked with an awful head/chest cold, with a terrible cough and stuffed up ears. I started getting it at the beginning of this week.

On Wednesday night, I stayed up late (okay, 10:00 is LATE for me) to finish working on my outline for the Women's Retreat. I snuck upstairs (all was DARK and quiet). When I got into my bedroom it was pitch black, and I proceeded to trip over a set of stairs we have by the bed for our dog, and sprained my ankle, and also got a nasty gash on my leg. My husband was frightened out of a deep sleep and came flying at me (still all in the dark) to see if I was okay, tripping over me in the process.

Satan is happy! He loves causing strife in our lives... and he's doing a lot of that to me right now.

But then came Thursday... Thursday night is when I listened to the last part of the video series (told you I was behind). And that's when my bestest friend -- Beth (she's yours too, don't worry!) placed my racing heart at ease with a few simple words and a scripture...

You see, I had been fretting... worrying... knowing that I can't possibly sound as good as Beth Moore does when she speaks (and Praise God there are only 12 women that will be at our retreat). I can't even fake it, because while I have a SLIGHT southern accent, it's NOTHING like hers. And... I don't have BIG HAIR. Don't even know how to GET big hair. And cute outfits? Paa-leeze. Let's not go there. Plus size women do NOT have cute outfits. Okay, maybe I have a few, but NOT LIKE BETH'S! (and YES, I am Plus Sized)

But then Beth spoke right at me... RIGHT AT ME! She had us turn to 2 Corinthians 3:5-6, and when she read it out loud and began to explain it, I just stopped cold and said ... THAT'S ME SHE'S TALKING ABOUT! Here it is...

"Not that we are competent in ourselves to claim anything for ourselves, but our competence comes from God. He has made us competent as ministers of a new covenant... not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life." 2 Cor. 3:5-6

I am NOT competent in myself to speak eloquently, or to be funny, or loving, or to be a great teacher ... but my competence comes from God. Yes!!! HE has equippedd me -- HE has made me a competent minister.

Oh, that is so promising. So freeing. So... DO-ABLE!

I am purified. Sanctified. Equipped. Competent. And now, Confident.

Praise God for this study. His timing is perfect, isn't it?

So, I'm off to put on the Armor of God, continue getting rid of my junk and inviting the Holy Spirit to fill every empty spot in my body, pray a hedge around me and my family, and continue gathering craft items.

I CAN DO THIS! After all -- as Beth says... Living in the Spirit is all about living in victory on this planet, in our bare feet, on the hot pavement of living! And, honey ... I've got the VICTORY IN ME!!!

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EDITED TO ADD: I still can't get the links to work right. I'm going to try to come up with something this week, but in the mean time, please follow the links t the left... They are just awesome!!!

32 comments:

Coloratura said...
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sarah said...
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sarahgrace said...

Whoo hoo! Amen! You go get 'em girl!

Peach said...

You Go Girl! I'm heading out quickly because my eyes are burning. Thanks for the Beth-y wisdom. She IS my best friend, too!

BooMama said...

I'll tell you what - if your personality in real life is anything like your personality when you write, God is gonna unleash some "Holy Ghost power" through you at that retreat! :-) Seriously! Those ladies are in for a blessing because you are such a willing vessel for God's message. I can't wait to read what happens!

HolyMama! said...

guess what?! I can tell by your blog that you are a positively electrifing speaker! It's all in your enthusiasm for Him and your joy. You go girl. You'll be so great!!

Chaotic Mom said...

GiBee, I am absolutely DRAWN to reading your posts. I LOVE your sense of God Humor, too!

And now that I know you're a plus size woman like me, I have an even greater sense of kinship with ya! Sigh... Beth DOES look good in them nice digs, eh?

Okay, seriously. It is SO NEAT to read how you are bringing the study and what you're learing to your own personal life. I've let myself be distracted away from God for way too long. I'm very thankful for this LBY study dragging me back to some peace and joy.

And thank YOU for letting God use you to kick my tail end this way, too! ;)

amanda said...

Here, Here for the 2 Cor. 3:5-6 verse. You are right that it is SO FREEING!!

Father, I thank you that your timing is perfect--absolutely perfect! I also thank you that spoke directly to GiBee's feelings of inadequacy with Your own truth. Oh, we are so glad that our competence is from you--that you empower and enable us. You are a wonderful God. Thank you; thank you.

shannon from rocks in my dryer said...

The earthly circumstances are crummy, Gib, but the *ultimate battle* is already won. Onward and upward, friend!

eph2810 said...

Wow GiBee...what an awesome post. Thank you.
Yeah, segment 4 on the video session got me as well...God's promises are awesome - aren't they?
I know that you can speak at this conference with His Spirit.

Carol said...

It'd be great if you could digitally record your session, then u/l it as a vodcast so we could see.

I know God will use you in a big way!

Magnolia said...

LOL! I found your blog through Diane's blog (I think it's called praying for our prodigals). She mentioned how funny one of your posts was so I thought I'd check it out for myself and LOL, she was so right!
I'll bookmark your blog and be back regularly. LOL.
Thanks for the laughter.

Faith said...

GiBee, You never cease to amaze me. I wish I could be there. Hey, I need a little break- where did you say this event will be held???? I really do wish i could be there to cheer you on. God is doing wonderful things through you my friend! BTW - You have a plus-size heart and beaucoups of humor!!! Yeah, I know big French (yet used in the south mostly) words!!!!

GiBee said...

I had a comment left earlier, and I deleted it, because this is a G-rated blog... but I respect the struggles she is having, so I've edited it, and here is what Coloratura left earlier...

Hi... guess what I was just diagosed with... that's right, the [MTHFR]! (Editor's note: this is a real condition, one that causes much frustration in infertiles)

Just wanted to say that your blog gives me a LOT of hope. We have tried two IVFs, one cancelled, one failed and were just about to do donor egg when we found a doctor who had me tested for it. And I'm homozygous to boot!

Man, I hope I'm where you're at in another year or so... bless you and your little one. And thank you for sharing your story! I need all the hope I can get right now!

Coloratura -- Having found this condition and begining treatment is the first step to actually being able to conceive and carry your own child. Blessings to you as you pursue your endeavor. Always remember to turn your eyes upon Jesus, and look full in his wonderful face!

Addie said...

You're right, 2 Cor 3:5-6 is a powerful verse. Claim it, girl, it's YOURS! You'll be awesome, your energy is contagious. That's why Pastorman's wife was so excited to have your offer.

Great points from this week!

kpjara said...

GiBee,

Once again God shines through your words and wit...You are becoming quite popular in the blogdom, I'm like commenter #16?

I imagine that speaks volumes about the kind of person you are!

We love you girlfriend...and know the women at your church truly will be blessed...

Susanne said...

GiBee! It's exciting to hear what you are getting out of that cool study you bloggers are doing! I'm continueing to pray for you as are obediant to what God's asked you to do. You'll do great! You have such an excitement for the Lord it will come thru no matter what you talk on.

Janice (5 Minutes for Mom) said...

Girl - you are a gift!

Those women are going to be blessed -i have no doubt!

And man you make me laugh - WHILE you inspire and teach. That is blessing girl!

And - Owww! That all sounds like it hurt! Is your ankle all taped up now? Can you walk? And what happened when you dropped your son on his face? Not like we haven't all done that though! - so don't feel bad.

Beth does crack me up how she always looks so good. It is a good thing I don't live in Texas. My hair is as straight and as incapable of being big as can be. I would be a sorry site in Texas - being a teenager in the 80's was hard enough. I have 70's hippie hair! (my pic is in my meet us page - to prove it.)

Heather said...

You will do great!

GiBee said...

Sarah Grace, you make me want to put cowgirl boots on!

Peach, I hope your eyes are burning because of the late hour, not because I flashed you!

Boomama - I am soooo praying for the Holy Ghost power!!!

Holymama! -- Your name always gives me an awesome pick-me-up, girl!!!

Momma M -- Isn't it funny how sometimes we run from God, but all we really have to do is run TO him... 'Cause that's where we find peace and joy!!! I'm so glad someone else out there is a plus size!!!

Amanda -- you're an absolute doll! Thank you so much for that wonderful prayer!!!

Shanno - Love ya babe! You're always an encouragement!!!

Eph2810 -- Man, what would we do without God's promises!!!???!!!

Carol... need I remind you that there will only be TWELVE of us??? Can you just send us a clone of yourself? How in the world would we digitally record it? We'd all be scratching our heads and staring at the equipment, going... "Huh?" (how many christian women does it take to change a lightbulb at a woman's retreat? ALL TWELVE!)

Magnolia... what a beautiful name! Thank you for commenting on my blog ... looks like you've been blogging a LOOOONG time! Can't wait to read your blog!!!

Faith -- you're so sweet! I just love you to pieces!!! And, the thing I've found about french AND spanish words in the south... they're never pronounced right! LOL!

Addie -- you are so adorable -- why cut off half of your face in your picture??? PastorMan's wife doesn't know what she's in for!!!

KPJARA -- I KNOW!!! It's exhausting! My fingers are tired, but I'm loving answering each person!!! And, thanks for the flattery ... checks in the mail!

Susanne -- I may have excitement in the Lord, but I have Jello-jigglers for knees!!!

Heather - thanks! Hope so! I'm on my way know to read everyone's thoughts on this past week's lesson... so I'll start with yours!!!

Sandra said...

Awesome post, I love reading your blog, like I've said before, it's truly inspiring.

We've all been there, those constant attacks by Satan to keep us from doing God's work. But as I always believe, God is bigger than it and as long as I don't stray from that faith and continue onward, everything is ok.

Have you seen the NOOMA DVD's by Rob Bell??? They are SOOOO good, I would advise everyone to pick them up, truly inspiring :)

God Bless :)

momrn2 said...

I will definately be praying! When is the retret? I know of the attacks Satan likes to throw! I was asked a couple years ago to give my testimony at a ladies retreat of 200 women. The week before it was scheduled, I had a bike accident and broke both arms!! I was even headed for surgery the week after the retreat as the bones in my right arm were not only broken, but crushed! Metal plates and bone rebuilding were required. People kept saying I shouldn't go. ARE YOU KIDDING? I went, doped up on pain meds, friends dressing, grooming, and feeding me (can't do much without hands!), but I gave my testimony. Luckily I had it written and basically just read it. I was so groggy from the meds...

Anyway, I will be on the front lines in prayer for you on this one!! God is bigger than anything that could come your way! And God can and will use you mightily as you continue to surrender to Him! Are they recording because, oh, I would so love to hear what you share!! I have no doubts it will be a BLESSING!

Praying for your Prodigal said...

I'd say the enemy has got a battle on his hands! WTG friend!

Covering you in prayer!

Diane

Susanne said...

GiBee: Praying for Jello-jiggler knees!

Mary said...

Way to go for stepping out and being willing to do something that is s-t-r-e-t-c-h-i-n-g you! That is part of what it means to deny self and follow Jesus. I sent up a prayer on your behalf that the Lord will give you just the right words that need to be heard. Thanks for your encouraging words!

Heather Ivester said...

I loved reading your thoughts here -- you've got a FANTASTIC way of describing those crazy things in life -- that you're able to laugh through, all for the glory of God!

I hope you have a great retreat. I know your speaking will be like an exclamation point to those women!

--Heather, another mom in bare feet on the hot pavement of life.

Lauren said...

GiBee, oh I just know that God will use you mightily at the retreat. You are so vivacious and your personality is down right magnetic!

Glad you were able to apply what you're learning through the study too.

And 2 Corinthians 3:5-6, such a mind saver! :)

Leann said...

You can do this and I am so excited that God set that scripture right where you would hear it right when you needed it - He is so good!!!!!

Blair said...

Prayis the Lord God Almighty - Amen and Amen!! LOL I am so excited for you and what God is going to bring about in your life. Going right now to pray for that hedge of protection!!

As for the speaking part - if God can work through me in that capacity last week, He can (and WILL) most certainly do the same for you!

Heather from One Woman's World said...

Good luck and God bless

GiBee said...

Goodness Gracious! I am so overwhelmed! You are all so encouraging. In more ways than you know...

Sandra -- thank you so much for your words of encouragement... I haven't seen the NOOMA DVDs... but I'll look into them! Thanks for the tip!!!

MomRN2 -- You are so precious... I think you really defeated Satan that weekend! My Mother-in-love broke both her arms and I KNOW WHAT YOU MEAN when you say... that your friends had to GROOM you! Girl!!! (Everyone... what do you do when you have two broken arms and have to go to the bathroom???) Praise God for dear and true friends!!! Groggy or not, I bet it was a sweet and sacrificial blessing!

Diane -- Thanks! I could use every bit of prayer!

Susanne -- jello-jiggler brain too!

Mary -- you are so sweet! I am headed over to your blog as soon as I'm done with my comments and post here! Can't wait!!!

Heather I -- CHOCOLATE DIPPED FAITH??? Oh, girl... you SO have my attention... OH YEAH! (y'all just HAVE to go to her web site... NOW!)

Lauren... dear friend... thank you so much! You just don't know HOW MUCH of this study I was able to apply ... more than I blogged about on Friday, but will blog about soon! Thank you for your encouragement... and I'm staying stuck on you -- magnet to magnet -- because I have so much to learn from you!

Leann -- You just don't KNOW how Good God is!!! All the comments I've received, and words of encouragement!!! Oh, Praise God for friends!

Blair ... I'm gonna learn from you, though... I'm going to have "extra batteries for my flashlight" so that I can be productive these next two weeks while I prepare for this retreat!!! hehehe! That just grabbed my attention! (y'all gotta go to her web page to know what I'm talking about!)

Thank you Heather... wou are sooooo sweet and thoughtful!

Stacey said...

You go gril!! You sound like you're on a roll and nobody's going to stop you! I think at this point you can do anything you put your mind to : )