Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Military Moving Tip

Brenda, Retired Military Spouse

Catch that missionary vision...

The first time we reenlisted for our second term we decided then that we would make a career of it and that we would be missionaries. God would send us through the Air Force where He wanted us to go and let Uncle Sam pay the bill. It really helps to catch that missionary vision.

Another thing I wish to share is it does not take much to reach out to that new person who has just moved. On one of our moves to Oklahoma a lady in the church whom I had prayed with at the altar the very first Sunday evening we attended called to invite me to a Bridal Shower. I explained that I would love to go but I had nothing for a gift and no money to spare right then to get anything (we had purchased a new car to drive across country and things were extremely tight) right then. She said I have some new pillowcases still wrapped in tissue would you mind taking that. Mind you, that was a lot of years ago when even the least little thing was appreciated. That was the beginning of a lifelong relationship – we are still very good friends and keep in contact. And that little encouragement helped me get acquainted with a lot of other ladies of course.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

A Mover's Prayer

Whether you will be moving, or you have recently moved, I encourage you to make this prayer your own:

Thank you, God, for the opportunities this move will bring. It is a comfort to know that you have gone before me and prepared this place for me. I am excited about my new beginnings; yet I am fearful about the unknown. Calm my fear, Lord. Help me to put my expectations in you and not in people or places. I give you the glory for the great things you will do through this transition in my life. Above all, Lord, use this move to draw me closer to you.

© Copyright 2004, Just Moved!
April 2004 Devotional

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

A Moving Story

Spouse of a Navy Chaplain

God prepares the way...

In 1993, my husband left a small, rural congregation as their pastor to serve the military as a chaplain. He had been serving for several years in the reserves, but it was something that he "went off and did" and I had little understanding of the military world. He was called to active duty suddenly, and in just 2 weeks, we moved to Gulfport, Mississippi, and he was sent to Japan for 7 months. There I was in the Navy Lodge with two toddlers, and I needed to find a house to rent, get a new job, learn a new city, and figure out military life on my own! I felt like a tornado had just set down on my cozy life, but I was looking to the Lord to guide my steps and excited about the path He had planned.

I was given a tip on a house and decided to drive over and see the neighborhood and the house from the outside. It was very early in the morning, so I would not have considered calling at that hour. I found it easily, and pulled into the driveway when suddenly the door opened, and a woman emerged in a housecoat to put her trashcan by the road. I didn't want to startle her, so I waved and she came right over. We "hit it off" and talked for about 15 minutes about...well, I have NO idea what we talked about, but I just remember she was warm, kind, and enthusiastic.

Finally, she apologized because she was sure she knew me, but couldn't remember my name or what association we had. I laughed and explained that we didn't know each other...but we did have a connection...the Lord! (In the course of the conversation, we realized we were both Christians.) As it turned out, she and her husband were leaving the military so he could go to seminary.

Also, she was a Spanish teacher for a Christian school, grades K-8th grade. I had a degree in elementary education with a specialty in Spanish! Many of the teachers at the school were military wives, too, so I had a natural support group! There was even a day care so my children could be near me. It was PERFECT!

So...I moved into her home AND into her job...and she and I both marveled at God's ability to "make our paths straight."

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Moving Tips- Moving With Kids

Moving With Kids: Keeping Them Happy on the Road or in the Air

It’s summer and families around the world are planning a move. If you’re one of them, your life is full of boxes to pack, phone calls to make, lists to keep and tick off, and emotions to sort out. But how have you helped your kids to cope? They may be feeling this move just as strongly as you. And if they are facing long hours of travel to their new home, how do you keep the peace and your sanity?

Here are a few ideas to pave the road ahead and avoid an emotional collision.

· Share your biggest concerns about the trip. Talk about how you can avoid those problems. It’s amazing what you can learn about your kids by simply listening while you’re on the road or in the air. Settings like these help to promote an atmosphere of openness and vulnerable sharing.

· Practice these words: “This is our big adventure!” Building enthusiasm produces excitement for what is to come. Even if you have to look for the positives, learn to “make lemonade out of lemons.”

· Start your trip with a “God hunt.” This is something parents and children can do that will give each person the opportunity to look for God in everything. It also helps your children think about seeing God in every aspect of their lives. Some of the ways to go on a “God hunt”:
“I see God in the beauty of the sunset.”
“I see God in our move. He did...”
“I see God in this day. Look what He did...”

· Choose a game or two ahead of time that everyone in the family can participate in together. Try these for fun:
Someone picks a color, like red. Then everyone looks out the window for anything that is red. Keep score of how many objects are found by each person in a certain amount of time.
Look for cars that are all a certain color, have license plates from the same state, are the same kind, or have luggage racks on top. You can add your own list of similarities.
Kids take turns “packing the moving truck” by adding an item each time they get a turn. Then the next person has to repeat all the items packed before adding one more to the list. When a player misses an item, he or she is out of the game. (“I’m packing the moving truck and I’m going to pack my toys.” Next person says, “I’m going to pack my toys and games.”) Try this game, but name items in alphabetical order.

· When everybody is in the car or airplane, give an example of what it looks like to be kind, thoughtful, and patient with one another. When everyone has been traveling for hours or days, a little kindness, thoughtfulness, and patience go a long way.

· Before you begin the trip to your new destination, pray together as a family.

(Find these tips and many more ideas and encouragement in the book But Mom, I Don’t Want to Move! by Susan Miller.)

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Monthly Challenge

Challenge 40
Come to me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest.
- Matthew 11:28

Let Go: Are you exhausted from the preparations for your move or from having completed a move?

Start Over: Identify those tasks that are particularly exhausting or that you dread doing.

Move Ahead: Make a plan to tackle one or two of the most unpleasant tasks early in the day (or whenever you have the most energy) and reward yourself after their completion with a cup of coffee and a magazine or a walk around the block; whatever your favorite activity. Keep this break to 20 minutes or so and go on to the next task awaiting your attention. Remember to check these tasks off your list as you complete them and enjoy the feeling of accomplishment!
Challenge 39
"Nothing in my hand I bring. Simply to Thy cross I cling"
[Augustus M. Toplady, Hymn: Rock of Ages]

Let Go: Are you starting over? Do you feel as though you have nothing in your hand to bring to your new situation?

Start Today: Cling to Christ. When the familiar supports of friends, family, jobs, church, and favorite places have been removed from your life, cling to Christ.

Move Ahead: Memorize John 15:5, “I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.” and Isaiah 43:18,19; "Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the desert and streams in the wasteland.”

Challenge 38
I've got my eye on the goal, where God is beckoning us onward—to Jesus. I'm off and running, and I'm not turning back. --Philippians 3:14 (The Message)
Let Go: Is your focus on the home you left behind?

Start Today: A runner cannot win the race, let alone run the race if she is looking behind her. Her focus is forward and her eyes are on the finish line.

Yes, cherish the home and the people you left behind, but do not cling to them in a way that they absorb your focus. God has much in store for you in your new surroundings!

Move Forward: Be alert and be watching for doors that God is opening for you. It could appear in the conversation you have at the grocery store or at your child’s school, it could be in a request for volunteers at your church or community center, or it could be a smile and “hello” that you offer to someone else who looks lonely.

Have you been reluctant to change your driver’s license or paint rooms in your new home because they are acts of commitment to your new community? Do it! Start running forward into your future. God is at your side. No turning back.
Challenge 37
"Have you asked yourself, 'How is this move affecting my marriage?'"
(Susan Miller, After the Boxes are Unpacked)

Let Go: Is the stress of your move having a negative impact on your marriage?

Start Today: Pray about it. Remember, you can't change your husband, but God can!

Move Forward: Love him unconditionally. No strings attached. Show it wih your eyes your smile, your touch.

Challenge 36
...anyone united with the Messiah gets a fresh start, is created new. The old life is gone; a new life burgeons! Look at it!
2 Corinthians 5:17 (The Message)

Let Go: Are you bogged down with negative thinking and negative patterns of behavior?

Start Today: Ask God for the ability to recognize those negative thought and behavior patterns when they arise. Take those thoughts “captive”: identify them as the “old life”, and ask God to take them and toss them!

Move Forward: In Christ, you are a new creation! Believe it and trust Him for the ability to ACT like it!

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Monthly Devotional- June 2009

Help Your Kids Handle Change...

As you face the summer months with your children out of school, the routine of their day will change. Perhaps there will be a lot of other changes that will affect their lives too. You might be facing a move, maybe this is the first summer you’ve worked outside the home, or maybe you’re a single parent trying to hold it all together.

There are so many uncontrollable changes that can upset routine, and cause instability in a child’s world. Yet, how does God want us to live in midst of change? We are reminded to be consistent and unwavering in loving God, and in living out his word daily.

“And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. And these words, which I am commanding you today, (all summer!) shall be on your heart; and you shall teach them diligently to your sons (and daughters) and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up.” Deuteronomy 6:5-7

Take the following acronym for the word change and pass it on to your children. (You will want to remember it for yourself too.)

Cling to God
He is unchanging
Always trust Him
Never give up
Great is His faithfulness
Encourage one another

Have a safe summer, make memories, and speak the name of Jesus daily!

Scripture to Remember
Deuteronomy 6:5-7 (above)

Question to Consider
Have I left God out of my daily routine?

Oh Lord, may I never forget your faithfulness in the midst of change. You are unwavering, immovable, and unchanging in my changing world. Thank you for loving me so much that you give me all that I need through your word to be a godly mom. Amen

Thought for the Day
Today, regardless of my situation, I will live out Deuteronomy 6:5-7 for my children.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Spirit Night at Chick-fil-A

Join us Thursday June 4th 5-7pm for the Just Moved! Spirit Night at Chick-fil-A located at 12031 North Tatum Road Phoenix, AZ. There will be fun, food and fellowship! We will be collecting your receipts as a portion goes to support Just Moved! See you there!

Heart Talk from Susan Miller

Dear Moving Friends,

Have you ever been blind-sided by change? Whether it’s an unexpected or unplanned move, a job loss, an illness, or any other major life-change—it can leave you numb, shocked, and devastated in a matter of minutes. Your life, and everything in it, changes from the moment you get the news.

That’s what happened to us when Bill was admitted to the hospital on Friday, April 10th for tests, was diagnosed with colon cancer, and had emergency surgery on April 12th, Easter Sunday. Needless to say, we are still trying to wrap our minds around all that has happened so suddenly and unexpectedly. I have not left Bill’s side as the days have slipped into weeks of hospitals, tests and more tests, chemo, blood transfusions, blood clots, extreme exhaustion and weakness, and rebuilding strength to fight this disease.

As you know, there are many unknowns in a major life-changing event. But this much we know for sure: we are wrapped in God’s comfort and strength each day. He covers us with His grace and mercy as we forge ahead to fight this battle. Everything we have ever learned, experienced, and know about Jesus, gives us strength for a time such as this. We rest in His promises, and rely on His word for the days ahead. We may be living with a cancer diagnosis, but we also live with a peace that passes all understanding, and a hope that is anchored in Christ.

I consider it a privilege to take care of Bill in the same devoted way that he has taken care of me for 45 years. His courage and spiritual strength ministers to me daily. We walk this road together, hand in hand. No trial is so great that God cannot deliver us, no pain is so great that God does not bring us comfort, and no situation is ever without God’s presence.

May God encourage you, as He has encouraged us, as we trust in Him each day. Great is His faithfulness!

“…For Thou has been my stronghold, and a refuge in the day of my distress…” Psalm 59:16

From my heart,