Monday, December 29, 2014

Intrinsic Joy

As the sun was tinting the eastern horizon, casting it's soft pink glow across the landscape, I donned cap and coat and went for an early morning walk. The world lays under a blanket of white.. The snow- covered magnificent Rockies still towering strong and handsome in the background.

The world is quiet, peaceful..my soul is quiet, peaceful..

enter my cozy and warm home, it's twinkling Chrsitmas lights, with a soul that carries the warmth also. I am reminded again that a soul whose refuge is in the Lord, does indeed experience a peace that passeth all understanding, as Scripture says. A life that cherishes and holds close her Lord, is not defined, cannot even be defined in anything of this world, save Jesus Christ, He alone is the definition.

He offers peace when otherwise there would be no peace. He offers rest when there are no easy answers. He offers joy no matter what the circumstances. His love fills and ultimately spills over in a life who cherishes Him. 

To me, this is absolutely the most beautiful...

 I have seen many a person whose smile is literally from the heart and their laughter comes from deep inside somewhere. An outflow of a well springing with eternal life that is always overflowing just as our Lord has promised.
 The ever present soft glow surrounds their lives as I saw on my morning stroll...something beautiful, magnificent..a strength that seems to be everywhere present..I cannot explain it and realize that it can only be defined in Jesus Christ.

To me, this is the most beautiful...

When I see young mommies in the grocery store who smiles on their children with love, I applaud them.. An older couple whose years of faithful toil, marking their brow, loving, enjoying their last remaining years together, I applaud them and a sadness touches me as I think how this world is loosing something very valuable with the passing of that generation. When I see beautiful families whose children reminds me of the song, "Red and yellow, black and white, they are precious in His sight" and I smile inside as I witness the beauty of their adoptions, I applaud them.

When I see mommys and daddys just like Mike and I, busying raising their kiddos amidst bringing in the bread and butter on single incomes, all the while cherishing each other and continuing to build and nurture their future together, I applaud them.

And if I listen, just still myself and listen closely.....all these are living in the music, the soft glow, from the same beautiful song..
*faithfulness
*trust
*beauty with scars (a lovely medal of victory won)
*agape love ( much, much richer than our own, even tho we would have loved our best)
*obedience, humility (Christ truly is much much more noble than we could ever be on our own)

All these different stories on different walks of life, experience rainy days and even stormy days, but they all believe the same beautiful Truth~the Son will shine. He offers them peace when otherwise their would be no peace. He offers them His rest when there are no clear answers..and like my mommy always said, "The proof is in the pudding." And that my friend, would be the over flowing and ever glowing, always present "Joy" that surrounds such a life.

The most absolute astounding and magnificent beauty is this: 

"For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son,
that whosoever believeth in him
should not perish, but have everlasting life." John 3:16

"The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy:
I am come that they might have life,
 and that they might have [it] more abundantly." John 10:10


                                It's all gift wrapped and ready for the next reaching soul(s). 


         


                                        

                                     .   

       


           
  


 









Saturday, December 27, 2014

Choosing the Music Over the Noise

As we found ourselves busier than we tho't possible, raising our first child, well meaning people would add their depressed comments so to prepare us for what lies ahead..

As the years slipped by, we continued to receive preparational advice ( much of which we didn't ask for ;) ) about what to expect as we raise, our now, several children.

Sill the years went by, and God would bump us into families that hadn't lost their vision for their parenting and we would catch the perfume of something different...a different kind of music met our ears. It had a beautiful sound, contrary to the noise and clatter of the other...

Looking back it seemed like it was thro' the fog, something greater, something higher, nobler, was calling us... I now know it was the fresh voice of the Holy Spirit. It was awakening within our soul, a longing so deep, to search out this that God was laying on our heart, that it wouldn't be quenched.

Amidst the normal and mundane challenges of life, God was indeed calling us to something higher and nobler..."faithful is He who calleth you, who also will do it"...has been the testimony that has filled our life.

Even tho' for most of our married life, we were in desert settings spiritually, God kept stirring the embers of our soul and we found a great cry welling up within us, to seek out what this was. 

God miraculously transformed our marriage in those years and He sent beautiful families across our path that majorly impacted the vision that He was birthing within us for our family raising, marriage, and life.
I found my handsome Mike stepping up to the plate of fatherhood, and loving attentive husband,  determined to hit a home run, not
because he was confident that he could, but because he was confident that God would. To be honest in admitting he did not want to follow the footsteps of men before him who cause their sons to rebel, but to be the dad they need, a dad who blesses them, praises them and is there for them, guiding them and communicating with them. To be their first hero. It was contrary to the lies we've been fed most of our life. Truth waged a mighty battle within our hearts and it swings some serious blows.

      


We've had to let God do His beautiful sifting in our hearts and separate the noise and clutter, from the music and beauty He wanted to build upon in our lives. We had to trust Him when we were called to live differently than our upbringing. It has been a time of much prayer. Much soul-searching. Having to allow ourselves to be stretched, and allow God to show us His pattern for parenting. And to make the needful changes in our life so we can be the parents to these kiddos that would win their hearts instead of turning them away. And we're still growing, still learning. And meanwhile tasting the beauty of our little family! :) 

We are a continual work in progress and we are excited! Sometimes when we hear Scripture explained to a greater level of understanding than we've ever been used to, it can almost be frustrating! Because it seems so simple that how could we have not known it! But we rest in the Soverignty of our great God that we are confident in. We know He loves our precious children even more than we do, and that is what we rest in that God will continue to reach into our home and family and complete His work. We anticipate our tomorrow's. Some of the lies have been that someday our children will pull away from us in rebellion. They won't want to be seen with us. I remember as a younger mommy fearing that, as so many other "so called Christians" kept warning me of. I would kind of watch for our oldest to turn his heart from us. Then we would see these beautiful Godly families and it was in complete opposite of the lies. Faithfully the Holy Spirit convinced me that God's beautiful design for families was possible in Him. I've stopped believing the lies awhile back now, as there was no place in my heart to room both and have any kind of peace. 

                                        

Now our oldest is over 14 years old (15 years old now! ;) ) and he is such a blessing in our lives! 

                                     

He still flashes me his boyish smile across the room and it definitely causes his mommy's heart to sing for joy!! As he is reaching these youth years, we have been savoring his friendship, his trust, and his choice to walk in integrity and honor. He loves the Lord Jesus! His heart is passionate for God's stuff and God's pattern for manhood. We are honored to call him our son. The choices he is making in his life, amazes us, and we are excited at his future. Just last night I shared with him how he inspires us. He truly does!! When fear tries to rear its ugly self in my life with all it's what ifs.. What if you did not give him the training he needs to keep him faithful? What if lust creeps into his life? I choose to believe, that even admidst our parenting mistakes and inconsistancies at times, that our God is so much bigger than that. Then this mommy chooses instead to pray big prayers for her children. I just recently began to pray differently. Instead of asking that they have the strength to say no to lust and temptations, I pray that the God of strength would come in and fill them with His strength. That is where my confidence rest~in God. 

                        He which hath begun a good work will finish it, scripture promises us. :)

         


(A reminder about our adoption...If you missed the announcement see our older post,  "Twice the Blessing and Double the Expectancy!"

 You will find a donation button at the top right of this page if God prompts you to support this adoption. We thank you in advance for your gift of any amount! God bless you!!) Below you will see we are also still doing the picture puzzle fundraiser. It is $10 to sponsor a piece. We will write your name on the back of the piece and when the puzzle s completed, we will frame the puzzle in a double-sided frame. M and M will see who helped bring them home! So when you donate through the button above, there will be opportunity to leave us a note. :) Thank you!!

                         








Thursday, December 18, 2014

Merry Christmas!

There is something about the sights, sounds, and taste of Christmas that stirs within me the memories past and the new ones we're making as even now we live in the glow of cherish-able moments. I know of no other birthday that arouses so much peace, joy, and celebration...except for the birthday of a King!! The celebration that goes on for weeks, but that seem as just days when December 25th actually arrives!

The soft flicker of candles, the mesmerized lullabies of our son finger picking Silent Night..or hearing the sweet words of Oh Holy Night (Which has become another favorite of mine..it was one of my daddy's favorite too. Maybe that's why it stirs me so!)

I also love the brighter lights of Christmas and the glorious proclamation of the more upbeat songs as Joy to the World!! The festivity that reminds us that truly and awesomely there is joy to the world because a King has truly come!! The holiday cookies that kids have lavishly sprinkled with colored sugars, the jovial tones as daddy whips up homemade eggnog...it is all good. 

Interesting enough, 
I remember reading that, long ago God pronounced something else good. The beautiful world He created. It's sad that sin tainted this beauty, but the hope that we have in Christ, the assurance of His redeeming work on the cross returns to us the joy of celebrating!! And with it the return of beauty!! And in light of that, the age old~that miraculously never grows old, beauty, is all good!! I am exhilarated to remember He created us to love beauty!! 

The light in children's eyes, their overflowing enthusiasm and excitement, their contagious smiles and laughter fill our home, and I am reminded again to embrace even closer the eternal gift I have been given! And in turn our smiles become contagious! Our excitement and enthusiasm and the light in our eyes is truly a reflection of the candle burning in all it's luscious glow  within our heart, spilling
over no matter where we are and who we meet.

Here's a touching song by Cris Rice-Go Light Your World
 And something happens...something only He can do...souls are drawn and  pointed, guided once again by that Star Light. The sweet rescued souls ponder their Silent Night Holy Night reflectively, and as His peace washes over them...all becomes bright.. And a great anthem breaks forth as morning light in all it's glory as they truly taste for themselves, that because of Christ, the joy is theirs in this world!!!

This is so awesome!! The ever-living, breathing, life changing, peace in abundance, life in Christ! It is all good, and our celebration flows from us from truly all that we've been living, tasting all year! 

                                                      A Merry Christmas to you all!

                                     



                                        May His Light fill your heart with peace
                                                            and joy all year!!




(A reminder about our adoption...If you missed the announcement see our older post,  "Twice the Blessing and Double the Expectancy!"

 You will find a donation button at the top right of this page and we thank you in advance for your gift of any amount as God prompts you. Thank you and God bless you!!) 




Thursday, December 4, 2014

The Mind Of Christ

I am not sure that this blog will answer the serious question of, "What exactly is the mind of Christ" but perhaps it will lead you to the precious feet of our Saviour and seek the answer from Truth Himself.

Recently, a certain debate, had this argument of the mind of Christ. I saw the stones of piety and religion thrown and sincere answers misinterpreted ...as self composed respones of each ones view were given, about a particular situation, of what is the mind of Christ.
It has stirred myself to much thought...and I have come up guilty. 

We can zoom in on a certain area or two and form to ourself of what the mind of Christ is, and walk away feeling just pretty good about it and perhaps our conclusion is a good one in that particular area.
But if we look at it Biblically you can't take the mind of Christ on as a clothing accessory that some days you wear and somedays you do not. 

And that's where my guilt has recently been. Not intentionally, and yet, quite intentional.....

A few weeks ago, I was walking in a lovely and charming mountin town with my little family. 
I saw and heard there the shuffling footsteps of a man and a bit later, as I paused to look through a store window with my little ones, and he walked past, I smelled the awful stench, the telltale signs of his bondage. 

What is the "Mind of Christ?" Not just in the situations that we feel like excercising it but what is the  "Mind of Christ" in its entirety?

You know, that night, I knew what I should do.... Let me tell you a very short story...

About 12 years before my birth, another old drunk, perhaps sober for the moment, was walking toward a local bar when he encounted a group of strangers holding an evangelistic street meeting...who would have thought that this broken piece of man would start sobbing, convicted of the Holy Spirit, and of the empowering love of Christ Himself as He reached this broken miserable piece of clay?!

That man, was my daddy..(For more check out the blog post, "Filthy Rags Transformed into Armor of Honor". )

Now, you understand better the sorrow I have carried since that day, a few weeks ago, of not truly being the hands and feet of Christ to this wasted bit of drunken man...I knew the secret to life abundantly for him, and I did nothing about it. Or in otherwards, I did not embrace the beautiful mind

 of my Christ.

So back to the debate...We do not need arguementive debates that are oft times filled with self righteousness. Christ has something greater for us!
  
Today, I am deeply grateful to realize that God truly has a greater answer. It has set my soul free...free to love wholly, free to worship, and free to allow the Holy Spirit's convicting voice speak into my life! And therefore free to live victoriously! Thank You Jesus!! 
And it's His gift to each one. May you allow Christ to clothe you with Himself and experience the abundant life He's promised and therefore, truly receive His mind also.




Sunday, November 30, 2014

The Best Kept Secret

Tonight our family again experienced the wonder of the His Little Feet concert. We sat there awed, amazed, our laughter mingling with our tears.... In thinking about all this and still absorbing all this beauty hours later, I realized that it is more than pity that we feel for these sweet and vulnerable little ones... It is deep compassion with the strongest of H.O.P.E.  As these sweet ones sing songs of our Saviours protection over them, as they sing of His great love for them.. It absolutely amazes me how the very nature, the very Person, of our God fills that room.. His Presence is Strong and in the moments these little ones sing, there is absolutely no room for doubt in my heart that our Great and Sovereign God does indeed watch over them. He does indeed care verrry verry deeply for them and that these are the most precious of all precious to Him! As I was thinking tonight how these sweet orphaned children are the secret to our Fathers heart and that by missing out on feeling the burden and standing in the gap for these little ones, it hit me,that in reality we are the lost ones, cause we miss seeing the Father truly revealed in and through all this preciousness...

I realized tonight like never before that satan doesn't want us to know this secret. I am ALWAYS drawn deeper in my faith at these concerts as I gaze into the eyes of my sweet Saviour through the eyes of these littles.

I smile now as I type, I am thinking back to about 1 1/2 - 2 years ago when I remember standing on my lovely country porch praying and asked God to literally fill me with Himself so that what I gaze upon would be with His gaze. That my hands and feet would literally be His hands and feet moving...  I have probably never wept like I have in these last two years.. So whether it was the love gaze of my Saviour's eyes through the children, or His gaze through my eyes, is a mystery to me, but one thing I do know, is these little ones need us, because altimately it is Jesus they need and He expects us to be His hands and feet and heart and voice in this earth. And if we aren't weeping for these little ones and if we aren't placing them lovingly into our families who will? If our hearts aren't beating for these little ones and we are to have the heartbeat of God within our chest~ is tragic. He Himself calls this reaching out to His little ones pure religion. And if we don't have it ~do we even have anything at all?!


While not everyone is called to adopt, we are all called to reach out to these children. To protect them, to be a voice for them....

The best kept secret? Feeling the Father's heartbeat through His little children.. Compassion mingled with joy that Christ is their Redeemer stirs our spirit and wakes up the rescuer in us as Truth is revealed. It is the richest of gifts. Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me."

"Oh, God, oh God, help us to catch Your heart, Your vision for Your sweet and precious little ones."

There are so many ways we can be involved. We can adopt, foster care, or sponsor, we can give, and most importantly we can pray. And prayer is not a cop-out toward action, because our actions will follow the response of true and fervent prayer.





Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Taking up the Challenge

                         
                                   This is the lovely candle I chose to grace our living room.


This morning I read a beautiful article by "Women Living Well". She posted the challenge for the week of burning a large candle every day and allowing that illustrious flicker to remind us to keep the prayer for peace and patience in our home, daily on our lips...

Who  doesn't occasionally need that reminder?? I love being a sweetheart wife to my best friend, a mother to our children and even admidst all that loveliness I need the reminder from the preciousness of the Word of God to be a builder of my home. And that takes intention. It sure doesn't happen by itself! 

Lately, God has been reminding me of the importance of cultivating a heart relationship with my sweet kiddos...it's not that I haven't known that, it's not that I've never worked on it...it's very close to my heart. But like the candle challenge~It's a reminder....that's what God is faithfully doing in my life...reminding me what are the most important. Reminding me where my focus should or should not be at this time or in this season of my life. And many of the things that I weed from my garden plot called, "time" are not wrong, but for varying reasons, they are not what is most important either..

I relish in the Truth that even tho I do not know what all it really takes to have a flourishing seed of Godly children, He does. ;) He is the Master Builder and as His princess daughter He allows and even delights me into His fellowship and Fatherly counsel!!

I'm a bit of a dreamer...I love sweet stories and happily ever afters!!! And I believe God created us with the capacity to love Him and enjoy Him fully!! I love picturing myself across from my handsome Papa in His beautiful garden...sharing, communing.. It seems like too often, we feel the pull to outgrow God!! I'd rather keep close and savor the reality of a living, breathing, daily relationship with Him!! It is truly ours!!

So for the challenge~I will take my two littlest sugar peas shopping today and we will find our candle of grace..our reminder of our Saviour who is more than willing to bless and fill our home with His peace and patience!!  (We have our candle now!!;))


(A reminder about our adoption...If you missed the announcement see our older post,  "Twice the Blessing and Double the Expectancy!"

 You will find a donation button at the top right of this page and we thank you in advance for your gift of any amount as God prompts you. If you prefer to write a check out to our Church and receive a tax deductible receipt you may make checks payable to: "Ellerslie Mission Society" and be sure to note on the memo blank that it is: "Groff family adoption". The address is: 655 Southwood Lane  Windsor, Co. 80550. Thank you and God bless you!!) 
                        
                                                     Our South American Sweetnesses!!!!!
We are excited to bring our little ones home!! There is still a long road ahead and much financial mountains, but we rest in the Miracle of our Saviour!!!! Please partner with us in prayer!! Many thanks!!!
We are doing a 1,008 piece puzzle fundraiser and it is $10 a puzzle piece if you care to sponsor. Once the puzzle ( of the above picture) is finished we will frame it in a double sided frame. For every piece that you sponsor, we will write your name on the back and our sweet M and M will see who helped bring them home!!!! 
                                                           Thank you!!
                          

        



Monday, September 15, 2014

Faithfulness and Beauty

Autumn is definitely on the way, so I've been hearing. The truth is, I tho't it seemed like it a few weeks ago! To this Florida raised girl, the weather we had last week was winter weather!! It seriously was the kind of weather you hoped would make itself present for Christmas Day in Florida and I always found myself hoping it would be cold all day Christmas! Our little family is quite eager to discover the autumn season with all the changing leaves, brisk weather, hopefully pumpkin festivals in cooler weather~some of the things that we didn't experience in Florida!

The other day as I was in thought to our children's faithfulness in Christ, the Holy Spirit reminded me that my faithfulness and the faithfulness of their daddy is a key factor in that. As God is able to grow, stretch and purify our hearts, that mighty work is also done in the hearts of our children.  But if the Holy Spirit's work is not allowed to purify us of our sin, that has serious consequences that is trickled down to our kiddos.  
 
Now as individuals God will still call our children out and faithfully prove Himself to them, but the whole train up a child in the way he should go, I believe has a lot to do with the work that is first taking place in our own life!! 

At the same time, I rest in the perfection of my King Jesus and trust in Him to be everything that I am not! He so faithfully takes my meager offering with all it's imperfections and He touches it and works His effective work in our children!! Now that is really really an awesome thing to me!! I am still an unfinished product myself, and yet we are raising these precious kids, so it is the faithfulness of a very great God that my trust rest in and it's His blessing that annoints the training we sincerely invest in our precious kids lives!!  

The verse that says if we train up our kids in the way they should go and the promise that they will not depart, has for most of my motherhood, bothered me, rather than bless me! I'd look around as a young mommy, and see all the youth rebellion in the Church, in so called Christian families and I found no comfort in the verse! But God kept pressing me in to Him and the blessing He desires for His children, till I had to look square on the verse and believe it. I still do not have all the different answers, but God says it and I'm choosing to believe it.

 Also, whenever I hear the story of Hudson Taylor's mother being burdened to pray for her wayward son and she spent time in prayer till he actually surrendered his heart to God..  I have mostly been troubled how such a godly woman had a wayward son in the first place-I don't know the answer to that either, but her son completely gave his whole life to Jesus and His work. And he went on to become a man of God. I will continue to believe the promises of God's Word, and continue to allow Him to weed any sin of pride, bitterness, anger, whatever it might be, from my heart.

I am so deeply grateful of the daily blessings of peace and joy that is ours as children of God. It kinda just struck me again this morning, of the beauty that is oursto pour lavishly into every new day and that our homes can spill over with all that is truly lovely!! Today, I've been given the fresh bursting gift of life and I have the honorable priviledge to mother our children, to bless my sweet Mike's life, to live out Proverrbs 31!! 

The more faith I find myself embracing, the more I taste of the fullness of Christ! Our life in Him is rich and beautiful.

Just last night I sadly thought of someone who has lived mostly to secure their own selfish dream- house ( or so I imagine), money....and the broken relationships...and as they approach the end of their life, I see quite sadly, that they are being left with a handful of ashes.. 

On the other hand, as children of God, we live and walk and breathe a Heavenly dream and all of what is in Heaven becomes ours right here on earth~it touches our marriages, our children, our Church family, our personal life in Christ!! Our senses fairly burst at the grandness and greatness of our God!!! The beauty of His sunrise, the whisper of the leaves thro' the trees, the smell of autumn, the magnificent Rockies that proclaim His power and His greatness!! 

                           


(A reminder about our adoption...If you missed the announcement see our older post,  "Twice the Blessing and Double the Expectancy!"

 You will find a donation button at the top right of this page and we thank you in advance for your gift of any amount as God prompts you. If you prefer to write a check out to our Church and receive a tax deductible receipt you may make checks payable to: "Ellerslie Mission Society" and be sure to note on the memo blank that it is: "Groff family adoption". The address is: 655 Southwood Lane  Windsor, Co. 80550. Thank you and God bless you!!)





Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Sweetly Remembering Who We are Raising~Sweetness of our Mommyhood

The drizzling rain, sipping hot coffee and relishing the quietness before the grand finale of every brilliant color as my children awaken and their day begins. There will be breakfast served, uniforms to dress in, teeth brushed, kisses and hugs and prayers...then the 3 oldest will be off to their twice a week tutoring program which aids them in academical excellence and also disciples their hearts as they continue to discover more and grasp deeper the very Person of our Lord Jesus. 

The two little sugar peas in a pod will play and enjoy the luxuries that just simply comes with home. Little princess is working on kindergarten and loves it!! 

These are fleeting years...I remember a well meaning mommy assure me that these years won't last forever. I am sad for her, because somehow it told me that she has never discovered the overflowing joy-filled honor in her motherhood. I would hold these years close forever if I could. I admit tho' it is nice when your 5 year old can dress herself, or littles get out of diapers and when the children in their budding maturity, embrace what is right and you look on in wonder at the fruit produced in their life. 

But when I kiss them goodnight and say prayers with them and later check in on them to make sure the soft covers are tucked here and there, I am overwhelmed with my bursting mother heart of love for these precious ones and thankfulness that they're all here safe and sound in their sweet little home. Or as I gaze on the beautiful wonder that comes with childhood.

At the same time God is preparing my mommy heart for the day when not only their maturity will be tested, but their wings also. I envision our home as being a welcoming retreat of warmth and safety for them to come back to...to find refreshment. To realize our heart strings were never disconnected even tho' distance may separate us. ( Hopefully only  briefly will the distance separate us!!)

I cannot undo our Lord's great commissioning for His children to be sent out to minister and bring His life and the very reflection of who He is to a dark, lost, and dying world. It is really strengthening for me to keep the vision out before us constantly...to realize fully that we are training them to walk in strength and integrity, to spend their lives fully on serving and rescuing the weak and vulnerable of this world. To be replicas of Christ in all of their life and in their marriages and in their parenthood. 

We are deeply grateful for our Church and Pastor who guides us in our learning to actually know how to read and navigate the atlas that we both held with in our hands our whole life~the precious Words of our Saviour. You know, it's one thing to actually hold the Bible reverently within our grasp but quite another to know how to live it 24/7 victoriously!! Or to actually grasp the truths of its life-changing message every day!! 

    This is while gathering my things from outside because the cool drizzling rain, was finally 
     sending me indoors where it is cozy and dry. ;)     

It's that time of morning where the bustle of excited childhood energy will be filling this house! ;) 
I wish you all a grandness, in Christ, mommy-filled day!! Going forth as He meant us to...serving, loving and raising all these littles and not so littles for Him!!!


A reminder about our adoption...If you missed the announcement see our older post,  "Twice the Blessing and Double the Expectancy!"

 You will find a donation button at the top right of this page and we thank you in advance for your gift of any amount as God prompts you. If you prefer to write a check out to our Church and receive a tax deductible receipt you may make checks payable to: "Ellerslie Mission Society" and be sure to note on the memo blank that it is: "Groff family adoption". The address is: 655 Southwood Lane  Windsor, Co. 80550. Thank you and God bless you!!








Sunday, September 7, 2014

The Certainty of Our God Amidst Uncertain Circumstances

The flickering warm glow of the candles, the soothing and gentle music of "Be Still", the tinted sky promising a rising sun, and the fresh assurance and joy of a brand new day. It's all so lovely, so beautiful. 

This has been truly one of my most favorite part of day for quite a number of years now. (The other is, building memories with my little family. ;) )The undisturbed early morning where my soul is still and in reverence to a Holy God who lays out a wardrobe, fit for a queen, today for me to wear. It is strength, peace, a bubbling joy, laughter. 

God has been feeding my yearning for more of Himself, with more of Himself. A few years ago, despite what I saw all around me, God placed upon myself His calling of a nobler life, a victorious 24/7 life. Proverbs 31 speaks of strength and honor being our clothing. Another passage of Scripture promises that if we train our children in His way they will not depart. 

All this and much much more, I remember, finally setting my heart toward this and refused to succumb to the uncertainties, the lack of earthly examples to follow. God's Word says it and I chose to believe that these wonderful things in Him were truly ours to enjoy. To grow by, to be stretched in.

And as the years slipped by, and life was filled with the uncertainty of a down economy, and death in the family, still God kept calling my soul out..there has been many tears involved...and many times as the tears ran unbidden down my cheeks God lifted my chin and stroked my cheek as a father would and whispered to me His love and that He truly has a plan for our little family's life.

I remember a few years ago,  I was asked to give a brief testimony in a ladies prison. The speaker that night that asked me, refreshed me with what he remembered having heard me mention the year before about theses women being princess daughters of Jesus. He tho't maybe I could speak of that...

What this man did not know ( as he shared with me later) was that at that moment we were losing our home and had absolutely no idea what we were going to do. I was broken and if I looked at my pocket of resources I didn't really have anything to offer these women... Or did I? 

As I sat, waiting to speak I remember my sweetheart Mike telling me once that the Holy Spirit gives us His words and we don't need to pre-think what we would say...truthfully, I didn't have long to think anyway, with the short notice I was given.

Taking my place in front of hundreds of women. And looking out over the crowd, I began to share what we have , in Christ, and that with Jesus Christ as our Kingly Papa, we are His beautiful princesses...as I shared with these women who were broken as myself, in need of something~hope. God gave me His  Words of Hope of knowing Christ will never leave us nor forsake us, I shared that we were currently losing our home, I shared, I wept...

That day, as hundreds of women inmates wept with me, there was healing...we all had our own and different stories of our life lived so far, but the very same wonderful promises of Scripture.. A beautiful night indeed as we each wept at the precious feet of our Saviour and pouring our ointment out upon His feet, letting everything that meant something to us, slid from our once clenched fingers.. 


I did not know that day, that when we did finally leave our home of over 9 years, for the very last time, that a week before we would bury our strong, healthy ( or so we had tho't) daddy dear. So many loses, and yet God kept His promise. It was the beginning of some of the darkest months of my life and I know today, in Christ, I could have walked through them more graciously then I did. 

As we drove from our beautiful country home that last early morning, Mike prayed, "Thank You for the nine years you gave us to enjoy and now someone else can. Help us know that all is still good in Your eyes."

And today, these years later, our voices still ring with laughter, why? Because all is still good in God's eyes. He never left us. He never forsook us. He adundantly blessed upove all that we asked or ever thought. He is faithful and we taste it fully. Our hearts felt His soothing aloe like ointment of healing and restoration. God is faithful.




 
A reminder about our adoption...If you missed the announcement see our older post,  "Twice the Blessing and Double the Expectancy!"

 You will find a donation button at the top right of this page and we thank you in advance for your gift of any amount as God prompts you. If you prefer to write a check out to our Church and receive a tax deductible receipt you may make checks payable to: "Ellerslie Mission Society" and be sure to note on the memo blank that it is: "Groff family adoption". The address is: 655 Southwood Lane  Windsor, Co. 80550. Thank you and God bless you!!





Friday, September 5, 2014

He is Faithful

All the littles are tucked snug in their beds. Prayers have been said, kisses and hugs given, and all the last minute bedtime chatter, and one last story or happening to tell. 

These are definitely the busy years, the molding and growing years. God has promised to finish the work He's started in us and if I just stop to actually ponder how a good bit of that work is while we are also nurturing little souls. 

I am so thankful that Papa God has promised to be what we never could be and to go before us and do what is impossible for us. I am also thankful for all that we can be in Him~faithful, courageous, victorious, conquering, joy-filled, an outflow of His intrinsic love!!

Here of late, God is pressing upon my mama heart to be a continual outflow of His very self and love in the lives of our children all day everyday...that is part of the beautiful work He's started and has promised to finish in me. 

I have found that looking up to older women who have raised Godly families to be such an inspiration and the greatest source of invigorating refreshment!! And the faithfulness that they witness in their families is as Proverbs 31:31says: "Give her of the fruit of her hands; and let her own works praise her in the gates." 

One thing that I noticed as a young mommy, were the very worn out mamas who seemed to have lost all zeal or ambition for their life. As I nestled my little one close and kissed the top of his precious head or cheeks and glanced around me in a Church I was in so many years ago, I couldn't help but notice the dull or boring looks on the faces of these mamas. If they did look at their little ones it kind of seemed it was out of annoyance. 

I am extremely grateful to a great and awesome Papa God who birthed within me that our children are treasures and gifts so valuable. It is with honor that I embrace my motherhood. Now with that I hasten to add that I am not the complete picture of motherhood that somehow I know God created me to be, but I am a small part of His much greater design and I want whatever it is with all my heart!!!

Just this morning as I read a blog by an older Christian mama, I wept with yearning to be all that, to see the fruit someday that this mama is witnessing. It is so beautiful and my heart aches in a good way because I was touched by the Holy Spirit's conviction of that continued  promised work.

God is so faithful and I truly would have it no other way. His faithfulness to which He adds those precious, sacred, and sometimes painful, finishing touches to this awesome work He's started. He's a creator and He continues to create within me a capacity to love more, to give more, to be more of who He is. 

"Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God; and are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone; in whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord: in whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit." Ephesians 2:19-22


"Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, unto Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. "Ephesians 3:20-21

And finally a sweet benediction for all of us mamas to keep always before us in our beautiful motherhood calling...

"Give her of the fruit of her hands; and let her own works praise her in the gates." Proverbs 31:31 

                             

This message was pretty centered on our life in Christ and motherhood, but I want to add, the overflowing intrinsic love of God through us also spills over into our marriage, touching and blessing the life of our Kinght in shining armor a.k.a. our husband, empowering him also toward the finishing work in his life!! 


A reminder about our adoption...If you missed the announcement see our older post,  "Twice the Blessing and Double the Expectancy!"

 You will find a donation button at the top right of this page and we thank you in advance for your gift of any amount as God prompts you. If you prefer to write a check out to our Church and receive a tax deductible receipt you may make checks payable to: "Ellerslie Mission Society" and be sure to note on the memo blank that it is: "Groff family adoption". The address is: 655 Southwood Lane  Windsor, Co. 80550. Thank you and God bless you!!
 
                   This is a recent picture during one of our Skype calls with M and M. :)

Friday, August 22, 2014

Memory Games and a Childlike Faith



The morning sun has come up and is now casting its warm glowing streaks across the farmland...The magnificent Rocky Mountains towering strong and beautiful in the background.

Everyday is like a clean slate in which to work out life's story problems such as we all probably did in Arithmetic in grade school. :) Today, I desire for my slate to reflect Jesus Christ nature and His very presence. I don't want it all filled up with scribbled out messes, but rather neat and everything beautifully written. And because of Christ within me, I long that, when I tally up the sum of my day, I and my precious little family will see His fingerprints all over it!

Last week Harriston came to me with our homemade memory game and wanted me to play with him. It had been a school project for Cameron last year to make this game and he did a really swell job! We focused on things that our family was either currently walking in or things we were excitedly anticipating God working out, and that was the theme of our game. Cameron drew pictures to go with the verses and quotes. He also chose to draw a cross on each card for when it lays face down.

Backing up a bit.....

Our family had been currently looking ahead to our move West and while still in Florida we poured over hundreds of houses trying to find one to rent....Some days  (many actually!!) I would think, "now today has got to be the day we find one"...each time we came up feeling pretty empty and little bit downright crazy!! We relied  heavily on the verse "Seek ye first the kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things shall be added unto you". Sometimes as I pulled myself from the computer I would think, "Who are we kidding??!!"  

We lived in a beautiful home on 6 acres of divided ranch land, had a pond for fishing, a large shop for projects, plenty of room for the boys fort building, wrap around porches that Mike and I loved for early mornings as the world was still waking up, praying and sipping our coffee..the kiddos would make their way out sometimes with their fuzzy blankets and we'd cuddle them and look forward to our day together. Had a small country town, a fire place which we used a lot in the winter, had magnificent views of both the sunrise and sunsets....

We would see all these beautiful homes for rent in these development communities, but that's all it was- a house!! We were accustomed to country living....how were our kids ever gonna manage?? How were close neighbors gonna manage with us?! ;) 

We tried to keep our focus 10 years out.....we could still have our beautiful country home in 10 years, but then what?? So we began to prepare our kids of the great possibility of town living and explained that this was perhaps how God wanted our next season of life. We prepared to move and continued our house search...

Here's my journal entry for March 2, 2014 @ 5:35am
"It seems almost unbelievable! but Lord willing, we move to lovely Colorado in 2 weeks. It has mostly been a quiet acceptance or quiet happiness, serene joy...however it can be described. Instead of the jump up and down, do the happy dance kind of excitement.......
But we have totally given up that we will find a house (before we move) but we will see. We will keep looking..."

Over a week later, through someone who knew someone, a cottage became available for us! It's kind of funny, because even tho' we were glad to have a house, we were just as glad if not more, that now perhaps we wouldn't look so completely crazy in following our peace and moving even with no house lined up!! ;)

Around a week later, we drove away from our laid back  country town of Myakka City, Fl and looked ahead to a beautiful little Church nestled near the Rockies in Colorado. God used those truth filled messages over the last year to continue His promised work in our lives. The Holy Spirit's work is quite unique as it can step so solidly on our toes and yet at the same time it is as soothing as aloe extract. :) 

To make our lengthly sweet story of God's faithfulness a bit concise.... we found out on the way to Colorado that the cottage wouldn't be ready...;) After staying in a hotel for 3 weeks, God opened up the charming rancher, backed to open farmland and practically lakefront ( where the boys can fish), for us to call home. It doesn't have beautiful wrap around porches...it has a sun room. :) It has the sunrise and sunset views too. ;)  

God has been good...lest I paint a false picture, I will say (without details) that it has not all been a piece of cake, BUT, I will hasten to add, God has been faithful as He said He would. When we couldn't go any father, the waters did part. Trust Him, my friend. He is just as faithful today as yesterday and we rest in the Truth that He will be just as faithful tomorrow.

As for the memory game we played last week, it held new meaning. We remembered our trust in something we couldn't yet see and now we see what God actually did... I'd like the kids to make more "current" memory cards!! 




The matching cards with a picture of a moving truck which says:
"He hath made everything beautiful in a His time" Ecclesiastes 3:11a
"God's fingers can touch nothing but to mold it into loveliness." -James Mc Donald

That is so true and we are tasting the beauty of that still~we love living here!! And the smile still tugs and wants to spread into a full blown one with laughter...
To follow peace and then to live in the delight of that is restful and refreshing!!



The verse for God finding us a house card says, " Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, to Him be glory. " Ephesians 3 :20-21 NIV

That is pure Truth!! We could never have guessed we would actually live in charming Windsor only a few miles from Church.  And we don't feel boxed in, as there is open land behind our house and farmland beyond. We love it here and while we were worrying all the way in Florida, this house wasn't even available yet!! And as Mike told the kiddos "God threw in the mountain views and lake just because He can!!" :)

Notice that Cameron drew our new home with views of the mountains and we have them. ;) He was probably actually picturing us in the mountains!! ;)



A reminder about our adoption...If you missed the announcement see our older post,  "Twice the Blessing and Double the Expectancy!"

 You will find a donation button at the top right of this page and we thank you in advance for your gift of any amount as God prompts you. If you prefer to write a check out to our Church and receive a tax deductible receipt you may make checks payable to: "Ellerslie Mission Society" and be sure to note on the memo blank that it is: "Groff family adoption". The address is: 655 Southwood Lane  Windsor, Co. 80550. Thank you and God bless you!!



















Friday, June 27, 2014

Something Real

After a moving concert last week,of orphaned kids from around the world, (His Little Feet Ministry)
  it's not the reminder of the blessings I have, that made a head on collision impact on my soul, but the reminder of my responsibility to the staggering number of kids that still doesn't have these gifts, but cry every day desperately wanting...desperately needing...them.

 I carry with me not only the inspiration from my soul being pointed heavenward by these precious kids. But I carry with me an aching heart....a tiny tiny piece of their pain. To me the pain in my chest is great. But in reality, I have only glimpsed of their suffering. I haven't actually unlaced my shoes and traded with them... As tears brimmed my eyes and rain down my cheeks, it was my whole heart laying "outside of myself" bare to the orphan suffering. 

It's interesting, but in last Sunday's sermon, our Pastor shared that resting in God is not passitivity, but how when you rest in God, it's "getting somewhere" and true enough, it's wherever GOD takes you. There's fire involved as God takes what we give Him and allow Him to turn up the heat, and as silver is tried and purified, we are also. He puts His burning passion within our soul and reminders like this concert is the ladle with which He stirs the embers of our heart.

 By the time the kids sang, "Go Light Your Candle" I had a firm, hasting, resounding, "YES!!!!!!" ringing from deep deep within my soul. And as Mary, I open up my alabaster oil and pour it lovingly on the precious feet of my Saviour, as in mesmerized awe, weeping....and as I give Him more of myself, I recieve more of Himself. What is more of myself? It is whatever that I've been holding onto selfishly. It may be something even meaningful, but still unsurrendered. I know what more of myself was...

 I felt the strainer skim off the impurities of my soul, just as silver. The melting process, is painful. But oh so very beautiful. Ironically, it's life giving. Satan has whispered so long (it's all some of us have ever known) that by giving up, we are missing out. But it's nothing like that at all!!! In giving up, it's really strange and hard to describe, but we actually recieve something very real. Something He can fill. It's not a painted up replica. It is the sacred real. 

These kids are exotic, wild pearls..waiting to be found.....

The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly. John 10:10


Thank you so much for taking the time to read this blog! :) We are still working on the adoption of our two sweet kiddos from South America and would be deeply blessed by your support!! We desire your prayers and if you care to give financially as a God prompts you, you will find a donation button at the top right of this page and we thank you in advance!! If you prefer to write a check out to our Church and receive a tax deductible receipt you may make checks payable to: "Ellerslie Mission Society" and be sure to note on the memo blank that it is: "Groff family adoption". The address is: 655 Southwood Lane  Windsor, Co. 80550. Another important note is that we have taken important steps insuring the accountability and the awesome responsibility of your monetary gift. The funds are being monitored by TLC Foundation, C/O Mr. Trevor Collins - 970-396-3811.  Your gift is important to us and we have diligently worked to make it secure. Thank you and God bless you!!



Saturday, May 3, 2014

Twice the Blessing and Double the Expectancy....!!!! ;)

Here I sit in a lovely little coffee shop nestled in a charming town in Colorado.... A lot has transpired in our little family's life as we moved from our lovely home in Florida. We have tasted immeasurably of God's provision, His grace and His love, as we mostly, in faith, took this step to where we knew He wanted us to be...it was a step we wanted to take as well!! :) But leaving what is familiar and what is precious behind are all the things in life that has a way of growing us, of causing us to become a little more dependent on our Abba Papa. And as we walk a path with our hand clasped in His we find ourself becoming just a little more childlike in our trust.

We have exciting news on the horizon...you know, that place in life we look ahead to. I'm one of those "horizon gazers". For years now, almost every morning I set my gaze on that beautiful eastern horizon expectantly.... ;) We serve a very great God and I anticipate His daily work of art! I mean, the colors He mixes and the astounding beauty of every different sunrise~can mere words describe the awe-ness?!!! Now we find ourself, as a family, looking ahead expectantly to a different horizon...

          M and M  (Taken Christmas 2013 at our house.)                                      

Many of you know, (see previous posts), that this past December our family had the honor, the overflowing of joy and the falling in love experience, as two precious kiddos from South America spent almost the whole month in our home. What was ours, became theirs as they nestled into the life experiences of what it means to be a family...oh my, the immediate bonding as our 5 kids and these 2 kiddos became brothers and sisters. They called us Papa Mike and Mama, but as the weeks wore on and we were just a little family together celebrating Christmas and shopping, going to larger family get togethers etc. and they caught on to what our kids called us, we began to hear the precious sound of "daddy" and "mommy".

These kiddos gave us the most precious gift. They gave us the opportunity to feel Papa God's heartbeat. If ever we saw the love-gaze of our Saviour it has been in our bonding with these kids.
There is so much to say...so much to not say...(like the mother of Jesus, I find it precious how she, pondered "all these things" in her heart...those sacred moments, the tasting richer of our precious Saviour.)

Our family is excitedly taking the steps to give these sweet children a forever family. We are filled with peace, great anticipation and longing to bring our kiddos home to us! We are blessed to be granted by their Country to Skype with them regularly. They and us count that as our favorite thing to look forward to!

Feel free to follow this blog on updates and also how you can be an eternal blessing in the lives of these kids, We expect God to do big things to make this possible. He ask, in His Word, for us to place the orphaned into our families. We are honored to be their family, their protector. To be able to continually point them to Jesus Christ who loves them so much that He gave
His own life so that they can receive life! Amazing love!!! As an important note, these children have asked Jesus to live in their hearts almost a year and a half ago! So, as children of God, they are expecting their prayers answered I'm sure! And your prayers and support will be a milestone in that journey!! How exciting!!

Thank you so much for taking the time to read about our adoption! You will find a donation button at the top right of this page and we thank you in advance for your gift of any amount as God prompts you. Your gift is important to us and we have diligently worked to make it secure. Thank you and God bless you!!



                         

Saturday, March 15, 2014

The Prodigal's Gift

What makes a place a home? Is it the familiar sound of the distant owl and the lonely yet intriguing call that drifts on the early morning air? What about just knowing my little ones are tucked safely and sleeping with sweet 
dreams in their little beds and that even if I closed my eyes I know eactly where each room is, each piece of furniture? Is it the familiar day in and day out schedule? Is it laughter and all the good  times wshare as a
 family? Ihome where I have perfected my surroundings, my possessions to exactly how I want them? 

I house within my body the most exploding in preciousness gift~the Lord Jesus. I know that because I can lay my head down at night and "It is well with my soul'" that anywhere can be home. Home isn't about the amount of things I have and neither is it about the amount of things I don't have. Home is something peaceful. It is warmth and it is the place that has a magnetic pull in which I'd rather be there more than anywhere else. Often it is people that make up home..

But with that I say, there are people all around us that know not the emotional warmth of a "home" and even tho' they live in a "house structure", God has asked us, His bride, to give them a "home". They are hungry, not only for food, but for the security that comes with acceptance. They long to be protected and feel its comfort aa blanket about them.  They long to be clothed in the garment of peace, knowing they are loved for, provided for and nestled in safety. To feel the slow smile of joy slide across their face knowing they have found a "sweet home sweet home".  Or the spontaneous exploding joy when they discover a God who loves them so much!! 

And each of us, as the prodigal, have found our way to the Father's open arms... and know we are home. We now feel within His embrace the urgency to give what has been given. It's a place to be made strong swe can be poured out...its a place that gives. It is outward in its focus. A place that He can use, can fill. Its not about us anymore.. Or what we derseve. Its about Him. 

He wants to take us by the hand, as a Father, and point us to all that is truly beautiful.. Our home is then graced by His beauty, His Love and His peace. We share the honor of experiencing Him in everything! The wisp of the wind carries His voice. The sound of rain, His music. We experience the gift of a love that nothing can separate~Romans 8:35-39. We are home. Where is that? It is absolutely anywhere He is. Where is He? I can't answer that question for you. Where is He for me? He says that if we seek Him with our whole heart we will find Him. Jeremiah 13:29