With God

This has been a crazy year and once again I’ve fallen behind on posting.
So much has happened since April 8th 2016, the last time I wrote.

We hired a Pastor of Young Adults and Student ministries which has been great. The Neigenfind family joined us in ministry and extended Student Ministries to include Young Adults.

We also have hired an Adult Ministry Pastor and the Olson family has enriched this community so much already.

I finally had time to catch up on all the required reading for my Consecration requirements with the C&MA!! (Whoohoo!! Free at last!)
For two weeks all I did was read.
It was a challenge, but ultimately so rewarding.
I did my share of procrastinating and brought a lot of the pressure on myself, but it is hard to justify sitting down and reading when the team went from 3 down to 1 in the Student Ministry department.

I like to jump headfirst into things and that is so easy to do in a ministry that never stops. Meeting with leaders, parents and students took precedence to reading required theological focused books.
Life on life ministry is vital in a youth department, but so is staying in the word and being solid on theology.
Life was an unbalanced chaos for quite a while, but I’m happy to say it has since become more balanced.
Like a boat blown over by wind and waves, I’ve been righting myself and bailing out the seawater and stress I allowed to seep in.

I completed all the reading and benefited from the two week intensive.
I’ve never read such large chunks of scripture in one sitting before and so was never benefited with the perspective it brings.

It is one thing to be familiar with certain passages in their isolation, but it is quite another to see the thread woven through the entire bible first hand. Or to see the chronological order of what I previously viewed as isolated incidents.
For instance, I’ve read the account of Joshua and Jericho. I never paid much attention to Joshua’s solemn oath in Joshua 6:26-27 where he states that anyone who “undertakes to rebuild this city, Jericho” will be cursed and that “at the cost of his firstborn son he will lay its foundations; at the cost of his youngest he will set up its gates.”
But it is hard to ignore when later you read in 1 Kings 16:34 that Hiel of Bethel “rebuilt Jericho. He laid its foundations at the cost of his firstborn son Abiram, and he set up its gates at the cost of his youngest son Segub, in accordance with the word of the Lord spoken by Joshua son of Nun.”

Sometimes I still see bible stories in flannel graph images in my head, a throw back to Sunday School lessons. Thankfully as I’ve grown I’ve been continuously reminded that the Bible is a historic account of God working people’s lives and the flannel graphs have been replaced with images of real, living people.

The common thread of God’s continued revelation, patience and love being poured out on people is astounding. Reading through the Old Testament and continually seeing “scarlet yarn and hyssop” being used with a spotless sacrifice to cleanse kept nagging at my mind.
Hyssop… hyssop… What is the deal with hyssop?
Fast forward to Christ’s crucifixion in John 19:29, Jesus is given a wine vinegar soaked in a sponge that was tied to the stalk of the hyssop plant.

God kept giving spoilers all throughout the Old Testament of what He was doing to redeem humanity. We see them because we see the whole story, but I wonder how much this resonated with the Jews in the day, who knew the Law and saw Jesus crucified.

God wasn’t too subtle about any of it. There were recorded miracles in the Old Testament that were full previews of what Jesus would do.

So while reading is sometimes a luxury I don’t always feel free to engage in, it is a necessity. I need to constantly be reminded of the Bigger story at work. This isn’t God’s first time around the block revealing what He is doing. He is laying so much of it out in the open, inviting us to discover Him and what He is up to.

I was given a book by my mentor, one that she said altered the way she views God.
She has been walking through my ministry journey for quite some time and has traveled the road before me as a woman in ministry.

I am forever thankful for the women God has surrounded me with, from my mother, sister, sister-in-law, relatives, teachers in school, friends in life, co-workers, counselors and life mentors. They have all had an impact that will forever ripple out from my life and the lives around me.

Thankfully they all encourage and share the revelations and blessings God has unleashed in their lives. The most recent unleashed revelation was this book, With: Reimagining the Way you Relate to God. It is by a man named Skye Jethani and he addresses the fact that we have missed the invitation to be with God because we have gotten stuck and wrapped up in living life under, over, from, or for God.

It took me a while to finish the book, trying to saver every bit of it, but even within the first few pages it had already rattled some unhealthy views I’ve ascribed myself to when it comes to life with God. Needless to say, I highly recommend this book!

Now I’m reading The Emotionally Healthy Leader by Peter Scazzero in preparation to an upcoming District Conference with the Alliance. I’m only two chapters in and it is again rattling unhealthy patterns and habits I’ve defaulted.

I’m a reader but ever since college I haven’t been as much of a book lover as I once was. Hooked on Phonics worked for me and I grew up reading constantly. But then come papers, huge reading loads of dry text books and I found myself skimming. With my two week reading purge for the Consecration requirements I fell back into really reading once more. My roommate questioned when I became a bit of a hermit, hunkering down to get all of my reading done so that I could spend more time reading. I laughed because it was true, but now I can read at my own pace and not because of an overwhelming deadline! I’m thankful for the refreshing time enjoying reading and learning out of a drive for personal development and not an assigned reason!

Time has flown by and so much has happened, but so much is still the same.
I’m still living in Florida working as Youth Director. I’m still following/stumbling after God in this journey of life. I’ve grown and learned so much since April 2016. I’ve weathered a lot, both literally (Hello Hurricanes) and figuratively. Thankfully God is still the same today as He has always been.

Thanks for following the journey even when the updates aren’t regular!



But, Hope Remains…

Hope keeps showing up again in places I neither expect ,nor look to find it.
In the weariness of the never ending list of work to be done in a world that spins on and on, hope remains.

To be more exact,

“Now we see things imperfectly, like puzzling reflections in a mirror, but then we will see everything with perfect clarity. All that I know now is partial and incomplete, but then I will know everything completely, just as God now knows me completely.Three things will last forever—faith, hope, and love—and the greatest of these is love.” (1 Corinthians 13:12-13

Faith, Hope and Love remain and for a reason. These three work in unison. The greatest among them is Love, but without Faith and Hope we would not see a reason to love.

I have no problem with Faith and Love, but Hope is often hard to come by. Especially in a life that is broken (a.k.a. mine & every life ever).

I am a member of a cynical generation living in rough days. The more we tune into the news, social media or even what is going on around us, we find more and more reason to bolster our cynical attitude: wars, terror, disease, death, crime, hate, anger, rage, abuse etc. the list goes on and on.

It is better in the mind of a cynic to not even look for hope we don’t expect to come, than to expect it only to find it never shows.

But 1 Cor. 13 says we are only seeing puzzle pieces out of order in imperfection, but one day we will see everything in perfect clarity. And even though we can’t see it clearly doesn’t mean that God is in the same boat. No, He sees it clearly and completely. He is the reason for our Hope, Faith and Love. They are dependent on Him.

Hope has been on my mind this past 7 months and God keeps showing me where it stands, it rests in Him alone.

So while the world looks like it is just hanging on by a shoelace, God is holding it all together and is at work.

I will continue to Hope even when I see no reason, because the Hope that is from God does not disappoint. It is not just a wish whispered into the night air. Hope has a heartbeat and is a live, a promise of better things to come.

My course of action is to fan the flame of Hope. To quiet the distracting noises, to unplug from the cynical things, to unclutter the cluttered schedule, to still the hamster wheel that spins on and on in my brain working out what needs to be done next. To provide space in my mind and life to allow Hope to grow. And thankfully when life doesn’t go as planned and it gets flooded with unexpected things, hope floats. It will remain and it will endure, along with faith and love.

The band is breaking up…

I realized that I have been super lax in blogging when I noticed I have only posted once or twice in the last year [sorry about that]!
I feel that in all honesty I can chalk it up to a “band break up” of sorts, the band being Student Ministries at Edgewater Alliance Church. By Summer we will have had three key players transition out. Unlike typical band break ups, this one is happing for completely awesome reasons and I couldn’t be more excited for my fellow “bandmates”.

God is constantly on the move and has been calling my teammates to new leaps of faith. He is not limited to our expectations or lofty thoughts. In each situation He has led my friends to be grown and stretched in ways they never would have expected.

I know God is at work not only in the places He is taking them, but in the places and positions they have left. Thankfully He has a plan and is in control, because we aren’t.

The band is breaking up, but it isn’t dead. Just changing. With each transition student ministries has  had to evolve. We are no longer the large chaotic mass we once were when I first took this position. So much as changed and we’ve been pruned down.

Wednesday nights has been the most altered. It feels very different, but I think in a good way. Students aren’t an unknown mass simply showing up to eat pizza and have attitudes. Our goal is always to make disciples and not to simply collect warm bodies. Numbers show growth, but that isn’t the only way it is measured.

It is defeating to see the numbers dwindling both on the team and at Youth Group. The only course of action is to keep doing what God has called us to do and to allow course corrections to be made.

I am learning so much that it is tiring. God is raising up a new leadership team and I am excited to watch it develop. This is what it is about, disciples making disciples.

Every once and a while I have to stop myself from day dreaming about a 9-5 job where I could actually leave work at work. It would be easy, clean cut and drama free. But God doesn’t call us to easy. He calls us to great and great happens to require all of us. No checking out mid marathon. No quitting.

So for now we will function while following in the direction He has given us. God is supplying for every need, we know that even when we see “needs” that aren’t being filled. He is adjusting our focus and sharpening us. It is all His and we are simply trying to learn the steps to this new rhythm…

Staying still while the world goes round…

I’ve hit a new benchmark in the “How to be an Adult” handbook.

I’m going on my second year living in the same place! This is the very first time since I left the House household back in 2007 that I have stayed in one residential dwelling place for more than a year. It feels nice. It feels weird.

Nice feelings: I am becoming part of the neighborhood.
I bike 5 blocks to the library and walk 2 blocks to go hang out with friends at a restaurant or coffee shop.
I’m getting to know some of my neighbors.
The loud, “grumpy” man downstairs recently smiled and commented on the beautiful weather we’ve been having.
I know both of my landlords (who live next door) by name and one of my good friends moved into the apartment next to me only a few months ago.
I rarely see the other 6 tenants, but I have plans of getting to know them better.

I feel like this is #15 on the list of “How to be an adult”: Get to know your neighbors.

Weird feelings: Living in an apartment when my last name is House. I often refer to my place as my house. Some habits you just can’t break.

Staying put in my apartment is one of the only things that hasn’t shifted in the past year and 4 months. This neighborhood has even changed. Maybe that is true of every place I’ve lived though. It is hard to tell when you don’t stay still enough to see it happen… It is nice and weird at the same time.

Shockingly Familiar?

Sinful Beyond Measure

Daily Devotional for March 11, 2015

…sin…sinful beyond measure.  Romans 7:13

Beware of thinking lightly of sin. At the time of conversion, the conscience is so tender that we are afraid of the slightest sin. Young converts have a holy timidity, a godly fear of offending God. But sadly very soon the fine bloom upon these first ripe fruits is removed by the rough handling of the surrounding world: The sensitive plant of young piety turns into a willow in later life, too pliable, too easily yielding.

It is sadly true that even a Christian may grow by degrees so callous that the sin that once startled him does not alarm him in the least. By degrees men get familiar with sin. The ear in which the cannon has been booming will not notice slight sounds. At first a little sin startles us; but soon we say, “Is it not a little one?” Then there comes another, larger, and then another, until by degrees we begin to regard sin as but a small matter; and this is followed by an unholy presumption: “We have not fallen into open sin. True, we tripped a little, but we stood upright for the most part. We may have uttered one unholy word, but as for most of our conversation, it has been consistent.” So we toy with sin; we throw a cloak over it; we call it by dainty names.

Christian, beware of thinking lightly of sin. Take heed in case you fall little by little. Sin a little thing? Is it not a poison? Who knows its deadliness? Sin a little thing? Do not the little foxes spoil the grapes? Doesn’t the tiny coral insect build a rock that wrecks a navy? Do not little strokes fell lofty oaks? Will not continual drippings wear away stones? Sin a little thing? It put a crown of thorns on Jesus’ head and pierced His heart! It made Him suffer anguish, bitterness, and woe. If you could weigh the least sin in the scales of eternity, you would run from it as from a serpent and abhor the slightest appearance of evil.

Look upon all sin as that which crucified the Savior, and you will see it to be “sinful beyond measure.”

I came across this devotional this morning and was at once refreshed and scolded by my own participation. How often have certain sins and disobedience become “small” and inconsequential? How often have I acted in ways that do not imitate the holiness of God? My sin has become familiar and comfortable, so much so that the shock has worn off.

The lines that feel like a knife to the conscience are “Young converts have a holy timidity, a godly fear of offending God. But sadly very soon the fine bloom upon these first ripe fruits is removed by the rough handling of the surrounding world:”, ” By degrees men get familiar with sin.”, & “So we toy with sin; we throw a cloak over it; we call it by dainty names.”

These are by no means meant to bring guilt, but to reveal the familiarity with sin. It is refreshing to be reminded of that young, sensitive faith that was untainted by the weathering of life and to be reminded that those days are not gone. While the scolding may leave me red and sore, it is necessary to remind me of the dangerous playmates I have made my own.

Holiness is a call that demands constant diligence. It is not an attitude of pride, but of humility as we stumble through the balance of judgement and grace.

May the sins I’ve made familiar become once again shocking. May the calloused conscience become soft once more.

Travels, trips and vaccinations… I will follow

This past month has been a crazy mess! I traveled home for my sister’s wedding which was lovely! I was home for a total of 4 days and rarely had a quiet moment. Everything came together and the wedding was a hit! It was great seeing family and catching up with friends (both old and new). I don’t know that I’ve ever enjoyed dancing and making a fool of myself as much as I did at her wedding! From the dance floor to the photo booth, I had a blast goofing around with family and friends.
There were a ton of “what if” moments during all the planning and preparations, but God is good and works all things together for the good of those who love him (Romans 8:28). The day was perfect and beautiful from start to finish!
I returned, worn out, but full of joy. I came back on Monday and now am leaving once more! Over the past two months I’ve been scrambling to get everything in order for a trip overseas. Vaccinations, prayer letters, packing, shopping and planning for the next two weeks, during which I will be off in a distant land!
I got my Yellow Fever vaccination and it made me reminisce back to elementary school when we had first learned about Yellow Fever. My friends and I decided to smear dandelion pollen all over ourselves in mock affliction of the disease. We were sorely rebuked and sent to spend the rest of recess washing up.
What once was child’s play, has now become reality. I’m headed to a place common with disease and sickness. There will be no washing it all off or an end of recess bell signaling the end of fevers.
We travel forward seeking God’s wisdom and will. Knowing that He is bigger than any disease, but that He also works through the sickness and pain of this world. He is not a safe God, but He is secure. He leads us through both the fertile fields and the barren wastelands. I pray to believe He is good when I find myself in both places.
I stumbled upon this song that sums our journey of following God:

It is by Jon Guerra and is called “I will follow”

When the sea is calm and all is right
When I feel Your favor flood my life
Even in the good, I’ll follow You
Even in the good, I’ll follow You

When the boat is tossed upon the waves
When I wonder if You’ll keep me safe
Even in the storms, I’ll follow You
Even in the storms, I’ll follow You

I believe everything that You say You are
I believe that I have seen Your unchanging heart
In the good things and in the hardest part
I believe and I will follow You
I believe and I will follow You

When I see the wicked prospering
When I feel I have no voice to sing
Even in the want, I’ll follow You
Even in the want, I’ll follow You

When I find myself so far from home
And You lead me somewhere I don’t wanna go
Even in my death, I’ll follow You
Even in my death, I’ll follow You

When I come to end this race I’ve run
And I receive the prize that Christ has won
I will be with You in Paradise
I will be with You in Paradise


May we all follow in the good, in the bad, in the confusion and in the clarity.


Oh the beautiful things…

“Beautiful things don’t ask for attention.” Sean O’Conner, The Secret Life of Walter Mitty

“To see the world, things dangerous to come to, to see behind walls, to draw closer, to find each other, and to feel. That is the purpose of life.”- The Secret Life of Walter Mitty.

Oh the beautiful things that don’t ask for attention. Isn’t that life?

Very rarely do the beautiful things arrive with a fanfare.
Most often I find they are beautiful because they do not need to seek attention.
Some of the most beautiful moments of my life were not planned, they just snuck up on me.
I stumbled upon their beauty by simply taking notice.

The first two quotes are from a movie called The Secret Life of Walter Mitty and it has become my new favorite. It captures the beautiful awkwardness of this thing called Life. The story is about a man who has hidden himself away into obscurity and by a series of comical events steps out into life and finally participates. The story is awkward at times, but beautiful all the same. Walter starts out day dreaming about all of the fantastical things he wishes he was brave enough to do. His imagination is ridiculous and absurd, but then aren’t all imaginations? He works for Life magazine with a made up motto of:

“To see the world, things dangerous to come to, to see behind walls, to draw closer, to find each other, and to feel. That is the purpose of life.”

This motto is then fleshed out in Walter’s life throughout the movie. It is a beautiful piece, in both story and image, of film.

It is what I would love life to be, but life is so much more than a movie. And oh those beautiful moments, they aren’t defined by me. Thankfully, there is an Author of this awkward dance we call “life” and he both directs and brings forth the beautiful things. They come in ways and in places we least expect. They come from the ashes of our mistakes and failures. God, the definer and creator of all things beautiful is constantly at work and we get to participate in his masterpieces.

We don’t get to choose how the beautiful things come or when they come. Part of the beauty is that they take you by surprise. They don’t ask for attention, they just are. They aren’t beautiful because they are noticed, they are beautiful because they exist. They don’t conform to social norms and they don’t abide by our rules and guidelines for what defines beauty.

This it was how I found Detroit, a beautiful thing. We headed up to that lost city once again this summer for mission work with Detroit Love Inc. There were 50 or so people living in a worn out Polish building. We had no lice infestation or plumbing problems this year and so many of us waited and waited for the proverbial boot to drop. Community formed and blossomed through adversity, miscommunications, mistakes and clashing personalities. God continued to move and we got to be a part of it all. The “boot” came in the form of tragedies and heartache happening at home and in the lives of our families. Spiritual warfare happened, but God defended and sustained. He continues to do so, even though we have left that mission field and have returned to another.

This trip was beautiful because it didn’t ask for attention. Our students carried a heavy work load and  pushed through long days with 100+ inner city kids at VBS. They encouraged, improved and outdid themselves. We worshiped God with our words and actions, not just through times of song and testimony. It was beautiful.

Detroit, much like us, is this damaged place. It is full of potential and willingness to change. When God moves the evidence of His plan stands out. This team reaped the benefit of years of prayer and dedication to bringing the Gospel to Detroit. Detroit reaped the benefit of years of prayer and dedication to seeing the Gospel lived out in the lives of our students. There are still several darkened and abandoned places, waiting to be reclaimed, in both the city and the lives of those on the trip. We are all a work in progress. Thankfully God is the one doing the working and thankfully he is not done with us yet.

There were several moments where I was able to sit in the stillness, in the awkward silence and see beauty. Many of those moments happened when we were all crammed up on a stage listening to a Spotify (ad filled, mind you) collection of worship songs, singing along and praising God. Some moments happened during morning devotionals when everyone is working through the devo book and trying to not fall asleep. There were also several moments of beauty in the craziness of running a vacation bible school with distracted children. Hearing our students teach a lesson, lead a group, share the Gospel, teach a goofy song, all because they love Jesus and want to tell others about him, it was beautiful.

Rarely do beautiful moments feel beautiful. So often they feel very awkward and overwhelming. As we do not create the beauty, we do not control it. Sometimes we don’t even see it until someone points it out. We confuse beauty with perfection. They are not the same. Perfection comes in a sterile, surgical package and has no longevity in the world. We confuse the two because perfection does not require those raw, awkward, all consuming  moments of us. It comes and stays in its neat packaging and everything goes along seamlessly. Beauty sometimes looks like a 3 hour long VBS program turning into a 6 hour long VBS program, corralling 40 some 7-10 year olds, teaching for the first time, letting 5 girls braid your hair, running out of snacks because more kids came then were expected and working a mission team so ragged that no one complains about having to be in bed by 9:30. Beauty sometimes looks nothing like any of us were prepared for, but seeing God work all things together anyway.

Beauty sometimes looks like disciples making disciples. For example, one of the girls I have gotten to know a little over the last two years, asked me to talk with her friend’s mom about letting her kids come to VBS. I spoke with the mother and explained what we do at VBS. After I told her that we teach children about Jesus and how to be like him, she politely told me that her children would not be attending. I went back to the van I was picking up VBS kids in and told the girl that her friend’s mom had said “no”. She sat there quietly for a little while and then explained that her friend was Muslim. She didn’t bother to tell me that before, because it really didn’t matter to her. Not because she was being insensitive to the girl’s family or their beliefs, but because since coming to VBS she has been changed and wanted the same for her friend, no matter the girl’s current beliefs. It was a beautiful moment. It vividly displayed 1 Corinthians 13:13,

 “And now these three remain: faith and hope and love, but the greatest of these is love.”

That is the beauty for ourselves as well as for Detroit.
While we are only in Detroit for a few weeks out of the year, these three will remain: Faith, Hope and Love.

May I never trade beauty for perfection and may my eyes always be open to the beautiful moments on display.
God is always ever showing, creating and bragging on his beauty, if only we would take more notice.


Moving through growth….

Once again I’m moving. It seems to be a habit started in college and one that keeps me from hoarding too much because when you have to pack up and move (even if it is just across town) every year or so you try to slim down your belongings. I’m not saying I’m down to 3 bins and a suitcase just yet but the moving seems to satisfy my gypsy soul and keep my belongings down to a comfortable minimum.

I enjoy the chance to reminisce as I pack up things and remember past moves and stages of growth in my life. Sometimes it is a matter of “out with the old and in with the new”, but sometimes it is an act of preservation. Packing up my books and photo albums or other sentimental things is always a mixed bag of emotions. Cleaning out stuff I’ve held onto needlessly is so cleansing and refreshing. Sometimes I’ve preserved things I should have cleared out a long time ago and sometimes I’ve gotten rid of things I wish I’d kept. The best thing is noticing the changes  and stages of growth. The things I keep and the things I toss are not limited to my physical belongings. Packing is a mental game as well. As I box and bag and throw out things I review ideals and opinions I’ve kept, altered or removed. I left High School wide eyed and certain of the fact that my strong opinions on the world were right and would always be so. Moving to a new town has a way of dropping you and your opinions on your head. College was fantastic for that as well as the many jobs I worked after High School. I’ve learned it is better to claim to know nothing and look to be taught by what God is doing than to claim to know where He is headed and start down a road He isn’t on. It stinks for planning because when you don’t know where you are headed how can you be prepared? It does teach you to learn from every moment and to open your eyes to the bigger story. I graduated in ’07 with a plan to save and change the world, to leave my mark. I graduated in ’11 with no real plan but to follow where God leads and an understanding that no one really knows what they are going to do or make of themselves. Ministry has graciously robbed me of my ideal plans in which I am the hero. At times it is hard to be satisfied with knowing I am not the star of my very own Truman Show, but then so often it is shockingly refreshing.

A month or so ago I stumbled upon this beautifully accurate description of what we are to be about, not just those who work in a defined and organized ministry, but as followers of Christ. Archbishop Oscar Romero brought some of the realizations and floating thoughts in my head to come in clearer. I’m not sure it could be said any better:

“It helps, now and then, to step back and take the long view. The Kingdom is not only beyond our efforts: it is beyond our vision. We accomplish in our lifetime only a tiny fraction of the magnificent enterprise that is the Lord’s work. Nothing we do is complete, which is another way of saying that the Kingdom always lies beyond us. No sermon says all that should be said. No prayer fully expresses our faith. No confession brings perfection. No pastoral visit brings wholeness. No program accomplishes the Church’s mission. No set of goals and objectives includes everything. That is what we are about. We plant the seeds that one day will grow. We water seeds already planted knowing they hold future promise. We lay foundations that will need further development. We provide yeast that affects far beyond our capabilities. We cannot do everything and there is a sense of liberation in realizing that. This enables us to do something, and to do it very, very well. It may be incomplete, but it is a beginning, a step along the way, an opportunity for the Lord’s grace to enter and do the rest. We may never see the end results, but that is the difference between the Master Builder and the worker. We are workers, not master builders; ministers, not messiahs. We are prophets of a future that is not our own.”

It is my prayer that this clarity of purpose becomes the soil in which all my efforts are grown.

“We are workers, not master builders; ministers, not messiahs. We are prophets of a future that is not our own.”

May women of God rise up like Deborah

There are some crazy uncouth stories in the Bible, especially in the Old Testament.
One of my favorites is found in the account of Judges chapter 4.
Because it tells of two beastly awesome women who feared God and did not conform to cultural ideas of how women ought to behave.

Now, please hear me: I do not condone violence and the violence in this passage is brutal, so beware.
You have been warned!

Deborah and Jael are two fierce women who feared God and followed Him. Both have crazy stories, but I want to focus on Deborah.

Chapter four opens with the familiar story of Israel doing evil in the eyes of the Lord, who then allows them to be taken captive by another king. Israel realizes that they have gotten themselves into a fix (to put it lightly) calls out to God and He answers.
It is how and through whom He answers Israel’s cry for help that makes this my favorite story!
He chooses Deborah!

In verse 4 we learn that Deborah is “a prophetess, wife of Lappidoth,” and was “leading Israel at that time”.
Just so we are clear:
Deborah was a judge and leader of Israel;
She was the chosen mouthpiece of God to the nation;
She leads Israel into battle; and
She was married.

This may just be my opinion, but she had to have been in right relationship with her husband in order to be so blessed by God as to be His voice to the Israelite people. Feel free to correct me but, I see no evidence or biblical support to deny that she was living rightly before her husband and God. God would not have spoken through a women who was living in sin and He would not have allowed her to judge and lead Israel if she was living in rebellion to the authority in her life (God and her husband).

Why am I making such a big deal about this?
Because we do not seem to support Deborah like behavior in our churches.

Now, I do not believe a woman should be the head of a church as I see no such support in scripture.
I agree that men and women have different roles and strengths.
However as a woman in ministry, I feel that the statement “men and woman just have different roles” is greatly misused. So often I see it being used as a reason to dismiss women seeking to serve in any are other than the kitchen or the nursery.
This is dangerous. 

It is dangerous because we risk limiting God’s work through women in the church all because of the way we think God should work, denying the way He chooses to work.

Whenever I think of biblical examples of women in ministry I think of  Deborah. Deborah was a woman of God and a fantastic example of how women in the church ought to live.
She was wise and recognized God’s authority.
She boldly followed God and proclaimed His words to His people.
She sought no personal recognition and refused to steal God’s glory.
She did not conform to the cultural understanding of how a wife should behave and yet I truly believe she lived justly in the eyes of God.
I want to be more like Deborah and I want to serve God the way she did.

May we, as the Church, continue to train up and encourage our women to be just like Deborah.
May we not be mislead by either side of the feminist argument.
May we seek Truth and not opinion.
May we only make one name known, God’s.
May we neither steal nor cover His glory.
May He lead us as He will.
May we boldly follow.