Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Follow Me to MY New Blog Site....

http://bethanyneedham.wordpress.com/

Monday, August 24, 2009

Baby Step 4

1) "Let no corrupt word come out of your mouth, but only what is good for building up..." Another way to word today's "better choice", "if you don't have anything nice to say don't say anything at all". Its more than not making jokes that hurt others, or are at others expense, but there is the gossip, the complaining, the words I choose to use...my desire is that God would do a work in my heart, since its out of my heart that my mouth speaks, and do a deep clean!!
My first thought when I realized what I needed to do was how much quieter I will be if instead of saying something inappropriate or unwise I just keep my mouth shut...it may be a good time to take up a career as a mime:)!! This one God I beg your help, and yield to your refining work, though I know its gonna hurt!!

Friday, August 21, 2009

redeeming the time

Why do I find it so hard to live a simple life? It seems as though I always take "redeeming the time" to mean packing each moment, each opportunity as full as possible in the short time I am given. If that is true than why do people burn out, find themselves in need of so many vacations, and then vacations after their vacation? Why is it that in the midst of these days I am "redeeming my time" I find myself rushing my children everywhere with me and cannot seem to find the time to slow down enough to walk alongside my three year old as she wanders through her day in constant wonder of everything she passes! What is God really calling me to, in redeeming my time?
There is something about this time of year that makes me want to clean house! Out with the old, in with the new! Its been a full year of activity with our moving, beginning a new ministry, settling into a new area...its now that I look at where God has brought us, and what I desire more than anything is to be faithful to what He has called me to do! My questions going into our next year here is, what is it that He has called me to do, and what is it He has not called me to do? These are the questions I am considering in these days leading into a new season....all I know is that I have spent much time packing each moment in a frail attempt to redeem the time, and God is calling me to slow down!!

Baby Step 2

2) Take time to rest, and don't plan every hour of the day... I woke up this morning after a late night birthday celebration for my friend Lindsay, and was hit with a sad reality:(...I have indeed caught a cold! The blessing, in this is that its only been helpful in making today's better choice of taking time to rest! So for today, my plan involves playing barbies with my princess, building a pirate ship in my living room and exploring the open seas, and then to wrap things up I was thinking we might throw in a few rounds of hide and seek followed by a family nap in mommy's bed!!
Praising God this morning for His continued work in me, as I continue to face "the Ugly Truth" of who I am apart from Him. Playing in my head right now, "He's still working on me, to make me what He wants to be, took Him just a week to make the moon and the stars, the sun and the earth, and Jupiter and mars...?"

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Baby Step 1

1)ALWAYS choose to be an encouragement, even if the jab seems almost impossible to resist
I love to make people laugh, and much of the time this comes at the expense of someone else. Its a mix for me of wanting people to laugh, and just plain old insecurity especially around people I do not know well. I don't want to leave the legacy of being the "funny girl", but want to be someone who you walk away from feeling uplifted and encouraged! I chose this today, honestly because I will be spending the day at the pool with the kids, and their uncle, who I have had a long standing friendship with that involves little more than poking fun for the sake of a good laugh. Now if "uncle Peter" decides to read this blog entry I must add, that it hurts me most that I have treated him this way, because of all our family he has been the biggest blessing to my family through friendship, and even service (helping me clean the old house,babysitting), excluding grandparents of course....don't want to get myself in trouble this morning!
My final thought to leave here this morning, my "Consuming Thoughts" this morning... I have a ridiculous amount to be thankful for!! I woke this morning, made my way through this beautiful apartment we call home, past by my sleeping husband who God has reminded me in recent days (yes I have at times forgotten:() is an incredible man of God, and I dare say the best husband a woman could ask for....passing him I made my way out to our balcony, which I must say in itself is such a blessing to have, and sat in our MBC memory chair which never ceases to be a reminder of our AMAZING years serving in that place...it was here sitting in silence, with only the sounds of morning sprinklers, and early migrating birds that I was left in wonder and amazement at my God!! To top of this moment I glance over my left shoulder and see my two children peeking under the blinds in their room waving and smiling the most beautiful smiles in the world.... Yeah, a ridiculous amount to be thankful for!!!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Choices

Do I get up when my alarm goes off, or shut it off and wait for the kids to wake me? Do I read my Bible longer or catch up on facebook? I have been thinking a lot about choices, realizing that sadly I have fallen into a pattern of poor choices throughout my day. Choices based on my human nature to be lazy, self centered, and prideful. I would like to say I am exaggerating or just PMSing, so its probably not as pathetic as I make it sound, but neither would be true. I am truly this pathetic apart from the grace of God!
So, how did I reach this place where my poor choices began to outnumber my good choices, and where is the path that leads out? Unfortunately there is not one choice that was made, and thus would undo this mess I have made...I see a lot of small, insignificant decisions. "Just for this morning I will shut my alarm off and sleep in, I can have my quiet time later in the day"..."I earned at least one lazy day,two lazy days, three lazy days...crap! I am so far behind"..."I will start again tomorrow, I am too tired today"
MY choice this morning is to start making better choices!! One day at a time...commit to make at least one new choice, a better choice than the ones I have been making!!
To get started though there are some Bigger choices I need to make, that may seem insignificant to others, but they are things that have begun to hold me captive to this pattern of waste! 1) I will officially sign off facebook, and all the hours spent watching others live their lives rather than using that time to live the one God has laid out for me... 2)I will not shut off my alarm regardless of the hour I went to bed, but will commit to my alone time with God before my family rises 3)I will accept my Heavenly Father's invitation to a sabbath and end this rat race
Above all else my prayer, is that these new choices will be honoring to God, and that I would live a life that brings glory to HIm!!!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

More Haiti Memories..






I realize I have not been great at blogging my Haiti trip, and since I honestly still think words do not begin to do it justice, I will share some of my favorite photos from the trip!

Bathroom in Haiti

video

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Wide Awake

So its 11pm and I am so wide awake!! Since sleep does not want to come I thought I would give blogging a shot, you know empty my mind. I am slowly coming out of a fog, I feel like, I am living each day rather than letting life just run along, and pull me along behind! I have found my patio as an amazing sanctuary, where I can be with God and the noise around just seems to stop! My children though challenging right now, have been a constant source of joy, and a reminder that despite all my screw ups, I am surrounded by blessings from God! Andy and I have been connected recently, and talking, and open, and just together, and I sense God moving in our marriage to draw us closer to each other and Himself!
Selfishly I got a summer gym membership at my old gym, Gold's. After only a few weeks I miss going in the mornings, and working out, and feeling strong, and fit! I am not a woman of hobbies..I don't sew, craft, paint, play music, or even scrapbook, and I find working out is basically my hobbie! It makes me happy, and it happens to be good for me:)! Also, as a bonus I don't have a million little gadgets I have to store in order to enjoy this hobbie, so it works out well for my minimal lifestyle:).
Well, I guess I really don't have much of interest right now, but this did help settle my mind bit so, YEAH! As a final mention, if anyone would like to pray, I sent out a bunch of packets to conferences around, with my speaking info...big dreams, and only God knows whats ahead there, but they are out there now!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

One Day at a Time..

"Do not worry about tomorrow...today has enough worries of its own"
I have always experienced the best days when I stop looking ahead, or obsessing over the bigger picture, and just take it one day at a time! Only this morning did it occur to me, that this was not a me thing, but is a principle found in scripture! I love to dream, and tend to have pretty big goals for myself, but I have struggled recently with reaching any of those goals, or seeing very few of those dreams become reality. I realize how I need to put this "one day at a time" principle into practice today:)! And then again tomorrow...but I will think about tomorrow, tomorrow:)!

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Moving Ahead

Its quite a thing to adjust to life after Haiti! I mean how can someone spend 7 days in a place filled with people just desperately trying to survive, and then hop on a plane right back to overflowing pantries, and isles set aside just for diet pills. Is there really an easy transition? Should it be easy? I am thinking not!
Since I have been home, I have found myself thinking back to my trip, praying for those I met, served alongside of, and passed along the way. I have had moments of sadness wishing I had known to do more, moments of extreme gratitude to God for allowing me to experience Haiti, moments of silence where I felt my words were so wasted in never coming close to describing what I had seen. Now, its been almost a week, and I sense life falling back into routine, and things feeling familiar again, but within me there is something new, this burning desire to not be the same. To stand up and do something, anything, but not wait another six years before I put my words into action!
This evening I made a call to the Battered Women Shelter in Framingham and asked about volunteering there, and was given the contact of a woman who could help me get started! I am also sitting across from my man who is working on getting my speaking packet together to send out to different women's conferences/camps to see about future speaking ministries! As far as Haiti, I really would like to pray about doing a medical team, and definitely want to go again! God knows, and I trust that into His hands!!

Friday, June 26, 2009

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Final Thoughts..

As I am getting ready to fly out to Haiti tomorrow, I wanted to write one final blog since I won't be able to blog there. I am so excited, and not sure at all what to expect! I am nervous about forgetting something, but know things will work out! I am so beyond eager to meet the people there, and play with the children, and snuggle the babies!!
So, my prayer requests, are for health and safety, and that I would not return the same! Pray that I do not get in the way, but am aware of the needs of the team, and leaders, and am quick to step up! Finally pray for my family back here, that my children would not even realize the time that passes, or feel as though its long, but have so much fun that my return seem quick! And for Andy, that this time with his children would be blessed, and he would miss me like crazy:)!
I will definitely have much more on my return..

Friday, June 12, 2009

Last Day of Work

So, today was my last day of work as opening lifeguard at BSC. Bitter sweet, as I will no longer be rolling out of bed at 4am, but will also not be seeing any of "my swimmers" each morning. One HUGE saving grace in it being now is that my mind is so focused on Haiti next week I have not had time to be sad, or over think the loss of these relationships.
I have to say it was an amazing run, and I pray God allows me windows back into all those dear people's lives when I sub as needed! So, for now its time to pack, collect my head, my nerves, and pull together last minute details for my first ever over sees trip to Haiti!!

Friday, May 29, 2009

Rose Colored Glasses...

I have always been person who sees my past in extremes. Those times I was doing poorly, I see as times of deep sorrow and hopelessness, while times I was average to ok I remember myself as doing really amazing! It all sounds great, at least the amazing memories since it makes mediocre memories instantly scrapbook material! The struggle it leaves me with however, is the discontentment with now! Nothing now can even hope to compare to those altered memories of "the good old days" that in reality may not have even been as good as I make them out to be in my mind! Even great days now seem to pale in comparison leaving me to wonder where I went wrong... Do you ever get to this place, where you actually convince yourself through this insane thought process that somewhere along the way you made a left turn, that should have been a right and you have forever paid the consequences?
So I have not been a huge fan of myself recently, and the source that seems to be feeding this disatifaction within me are these cruel, twisted memories of who I was before I decided to worry, and stress, and stop smiling all the time, or you know before I took off my rose colored shades and took a good look around! I actually convince myself that there was a day that I lived carefree, no worries, and was in those days that I was a better person, a better friend, better girl friend, more fun, a better Christian... Now I look in the mirror, and I see my age, I see lines appearing that were not there before, I see how my youth is fading and in its place this...woman. Normally this transition would be exciting, thrilling even! I mean seriously its what we chase after as young girls, dreaming of the day we move from little girl, to young woman, and finally reach being a true, full blown woman! Yet, excitement and thrill are not what I am feeling! Fear, anxiety, even disappointment....
Strange how my mind works I know, but I am in this season of trying to be transparent, good or bad, so here's a dose of "oh my gosh, Bethany is a phsyco", hopefully to be followed up soon by a, awe how adorable she posted pictures of her children:)!

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Moving Again...this time not so far:)

So we found out yesterday we got the apartment in westborough, just down the road from the church so hopefully very soon we will be moving that direction!! Love the idea of being so close to Andy's work, and having a smaller place to maintain, and with our savings in this new place I am very excited to say in two short weeks I will be back to staying home with my babies this summer!! YEAH! So much to be excited for, and much to do, so all this to say there has been much going on keeping me from writing and there is a good chance it may still be a while before I return:).. Haiti in one month, and need to get moved before!!

Friday, May 8, 2009

Authentic Beauty....

Oh Gosh, I have gotten so far behind in my blogging! Let me see, what's been up? I had been working hard getting ready for Authentic Beauty, and had the amazing experience of speaking there this past weekend! Its been about a week, and I have to say, its not been an easy one!
I have not done a ton of speaking, but enough that I am getting the feel for what kind of speaking i do, and my "style" I guess you could say! Well, for whatever reason, God wanted to stretch me, and I felt like I was very much out of my comfort zone, and came out feeling more than any other time that I have spoken that I laid my heart bare! I am so blessed by those who have shared how God used that in their life, but I have to be honest, I have been the most insecure this past week than I have been since Jr High. It seemed the more I remembered the things I shared of my own heart, the more I wanted to crawl into a hole, or somehow take it back! Amazing isn't it, how Satan can sneak right in there, even after an amazing weekend watching God work, and trusting His guidance, its like I am Eve in the garden... "Did God really want you to share exactly what you shared? Or in your no good sinful flesh, did you screw this up big time!!!"....
I realize right here, in the middle of all the lies I need to stop, be silent, and hear my Savior's still small voice!! You are my princess, I love you, and even in your weakness...most of all in your weakness I am STRONG!!! "
So, Dear Abba, I lay my insecurities, my fears, my pride, and even those things I hope for all at the foot of the cross!! Not my own, but Your Will be done!!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Cleanse Day 2

Basically most miserable feeling ever...I am hoping day three is not worse than day 2 cause I am already feeling pretty cranky:). Good side...well over half way through this day if that counts as a good thing!! Keep hoping this will be worth it when I get further in:)..

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Cleanse

So as of today I have begun the "10 day cleansing diet". Yes, Greg know that I must be your friend to do this with you since the word diet makes me hungry! I have to say this is the most intense type of eating thing I have ever attempted, and so I thought for my own sanity I would journal my experience as I go along! Day 1, well what I can I say about dy one except it bites!! I feel hungry all the time, and the lemon juice thing that is supposed to sustain me, does nothing to curb the hunger at all:)...on the bright side I feel strong and really want to see this through despite how tough it will be!!
1 day down(almost) and 9 more to go!!

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Dear Oprah...

So I just finished doing some One Day work, and I am excited! I sent out letters/ emails to Regis and Kelly, Oprah, Ellen, Fox News, ABC News, Cnn News, 20/20, Good Morning America, and other online newspapers, as well as some larger churches I had addresses for here! Who knows what God has in store, but I am waiting eagerly now to see what His plan is from here!
If you are interested in hearing more about One Day, or want to help spread this idea around your church, youth group or area, let me know and I'll get you the posters, post cards or video, depending on what you need! Moving ahead...

Saturday, April 11, 2009

desert

So its been a bit of a dry spell with my writing, appropriately so, since its felt very much like a dessert in my spirit recently! I am taking this time first to acknowledge its been a bit of a valley, and definitely a battle to walk in the spirit, and not in my flesh!
Second, but most important, its Easter weekend, and I wanted to take the time to stop and write, and reflect on all this weekend is about. To ponder on Christ's death, and his resurrection, and all that was accomplished on that day! There is therefore now no condemnation...Christ Jesus has set us free, from the law of sin and death!!
I hope everyone has an amazing easter tomorrow!!

Monday, March 23, 2009

Tabitha Begins

We are beginning a girls discipleship group called Tabitha, and we had our first official night tonight! Love the girls, and am so excited for what God has in store for this!

Saturday, March 21, 2009

God Box

I am ashamed to admit this, especially where others can read, but I have kept God in a box. I have known my God to be an Awesome God, and am so often left in amazement of who I understand Him to be, but in my arrogance I have boxed Him into the realm of my own understanding! As I was reading "Heavenly Man" recently and considering all the incredible God experiences this man shares, I found myself skeptical of those things in his stories that fell outside my own experience, or understanding of how God works. As, I read on I sensed God speaking to my heart, challenging me to break down the walls of this box I have been building for so long! I found myself almost affraid of what I might find outside this box of mine, I mean it wasn't as though I was not willing to expand a bit, give Him some more space to move around, but to completely tear down these walls? It seemed risky, dangerous even, and I was faced with a painful truth..."my god" is too small! I had given myself to God to the point where it seemed "safe", where I could experience His blessings, and admire His awesomeness, but to give everything, all that I am, drop it all and follow Him, no matter what the cost, to obey even if I don't understand, if it falls outside all my previous "experiences" of God? Am I willing to break my God box, face whats outside these walls?

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Not just to Serve but to Know

I finished "The Heavenly Man" this morning and I have to say having now read the entire book I recommend it to anyone wanting to be shaken in our "western comfort". I am still processing so much of what I read, and am feeling, but I know I have come from this book with a strong desire to know God at a deeper level. I realize even more how much I NEED a faithful prayer life, time in His Word each and every day, and how CRITICAL it is for me to hide God's Word in my heart!!
After everything this man suffers in Jesus' name he has this to say, "The people who really suffer are those who never experience God's presence." The most amazing thing to me about this book, is that you don't come out praising the name of brother Yun, amazed by what kind of man he was (though I will forever carry a deep love and respect for all he gave to further the Gospel), but rather you come out realizing how AMAZING I did not realize my God is! How often I box Him into my own experiences, or teachings, when not even the most insanely large box I could create in my expansive imagination could even begin to hold my God!!
This is what I want to know...I want to know God outside my box!
"I began to understand that He had a deeper purpose for me than just working for Him. He wanted to know me, and I to know Him, deeply and intimately!"

PS the book is The Heavenly Man (the remarkable true story of Chinese Christian Brother Yun) with Paul Hattaway

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Joseph and that Techno Colored Dream Coat...or something like that

So, I found out I was going to be filling in for one of our leaders tonight doing the speaking for Fushion, and I was handed his notes on the story of Joseph. I began looking them over, and memories began to flood back of little parts of the story I had heard in the past. Suddenly I had this overwhelming desire to take a look into Joseph's life all the way back to when his mom met his dad... I never realized how "R" rated this story really is, I mean seriously, there's murder, rape, incest, not to mention all the times Jacob "went in" to all four wives making babies faster than bunnies on steriods! By the end of my read, which was only to the point where the brothers sold Joseph into slavery, it had read very much like a soap opera/thriller.
A ton of things stuck out to me, little things I did not even remember ever knowing about the story of Joseph, but what spoke to my heart more than anything else was God's working in the chaos. I mean this was the epitomy of a disfuntional family life, and here wa God laying the groundwork for some amazing things later on... That's was my read today in the Word! It was so fun sharing with the teens even if I did have to "filter" some of the story to make it a bit more "PG".

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Heavenly Man

I have been reading "The Heavenly Man" recently, and its been a tough read for me. I have really been having a tough time, feeling very much in an "emotional blah" and struggling with not getting the things done I should be. Here is this man, suffering the most horrific persecution, not once denying His Savior, and using each opportunity to share God's love. How is it that in a country where I am able to worship freely, and have multiple Bibles in my home, my car, and in most of my bags that are just lying around, that I am not on my knees every day praising God for His Word He has so freely given me!!! I have felt so much shame as I have read, and eve fear at times I have considered what the future holds for me as a believer, if things weren't as free as they are now, and I ever had to face even a small portion of what Brother Yun faced.
So much for me to think about right now, and think through where my mind spends most of its time, and where I am really investing my time and energy...what things I have been procrastinating that should be on top of my list...whats keeping me on my feet and off my knees now, when I know more than ever before in my life that prayer is my most powerful weapon!!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Prince Charming...


I had an eye openning weekend last weekend to just how lazy I had become as a wife! I won't get into th details of that, but just know I was not on the right track! As a result I have been spending a lot of time this week thinking about my marriage, my husband, how to grow as a wife... All this thinking about Andy, and who he is I was reminded of something pretty amazing...My husband is the bomb! Take this good looking guy, who is incredibely gifted as worship leader, works full time as a youth pastor, and invests so much in so many lives around him, and then add to that amazing balance he is for me with his gift of organization, and wisdom, not to mention what a GREAT dad he is to Josiah and Mercy...add it all up and I got myself the Real Prince Charming!! Thank You God for blessing me with Andy!

Friday, March 13, 2009

Week One Thoughts...

This past weekend I began a fast from TV and Facebook to see what kind of difference I noticed in my daily life! At first it was tough, not gonna lie. I would get home from work, and wonder what I should do first since that was my normal facebook/unwind time, and then at night once the kids were in bed and I was feeling exhausted and braindead to not have the tv to glue myself to. However after only one week, I have observed some amazing things! I actually feel closer to my kids! Instead of spending a half hour or hour on the internet when we get home late morning I found myself hanging with them, and reading books, having conversations, and sitting down for lunch with them instead of putting them in front of the tv so I could "relax". At night, when I would normally crash on the couch in front of American Idol, or a recorded episode of House, I found myseld reading, catching up on housework, preparing myself for the things I needed to do the next day, spending time with Andy, and even getting some extra needed rest at night!
After only a week in, though there are moments I want so badly to just turn on the tv and veg out, or click on facebook and see what the world has been up to, I am realizing just how much I have been missing out on! So, I have decided this is going to continue a while longer (like 30 more days or so), and when I do decide to bring it back I want a healthy plan to limit my use of all my media toys!
PS Best discovery of the week...my kids are really fun to hang out with!!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Abba's Love


I was talking to Josiah recently about how "We love because He first loved us". I must confess, though the moment was precious, the words themselves were more my reciting words from memory than from my heart! This morning God gave me an interesting glimpse into this thought...
I was dropping Siah off at school when he decided to throw quite a tantrum over a very little thing, and to make a long story short we went from disappointment (we as in Josiah that is), to a digging in stubborn heals refusing to acknowledge the sin. I must add to this, I really struggle with patience with my children, and far to often lose my temper when they are not cooperating, however by the grace of God, this morning was different.
I won't describe the entire story, or conversation Josiah and I ended up having up in his room later, but I will say that I came out realizing that I loved Josiah through a very tough morning, not because I am some kind of amazing loving mom, but because God first loved me! What an amazing love our Father bestows upon us, that we should be called His children!!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

We have not been Given a Spirit of Fear...

I am in the midst of reading this book, "Do Hard Things" by Alex and Brett Harris. I began reading it to see if was something our teens might benefit from, and have already been so challenged in my own life! They talk about, living not your easiest life, but your best life that God has for you, and what obstacles to that might be!
One of the things that stuck out to me this morning in my read is to do the things that are outside your comfort zone... How often I jump at the chance to do things I know I am good at, or things that there is little to no risk that I will make a fool of myself or come out looking dumb. The idea of stepping out of my little comfortable "fenced area", and trying things that I am not the best at, or taking huge risks in doing things that I could very well, fail at! In almost every instance I could think of, this "fence" I had built up was built out of fear! Fear of failure, of exposure (I am not as great as some might think...also a ton of pride built in to this one), fear of looking stupid...just plain fear! 2Timothy 1:7 is pretty clear"God has not given us a spirit of fear"..
So what is fear really? They say it well in this book: Fear is well concealed lies! Here I have been , again, believing lies I did not even realize were lies! The truth:
God works through my weaknesses to accomplish His will!
I am not called to be successful all the time I am called to be faithful and leave the result up to God!
All efforts, even failed ones produce growth!
So its time to start tearing down my picket fence, and take some risks! As I was reminded this morning, doing things outside my comfort zone, can pull me out of complacency and spark radical growth!!

Monday, March 9, 2009

Being Intentional

I want every moment to count, every second of my life to bring Him more Glory, and I know that if I am gonna do it, give it all up, die to self there are things that need to go! I love tv, but far too often I use tv as something to shut down my mind, and make it easy to not think deep, or be intentional about focusing my thoughts on God! Being intentional is something I struggle with across the board, honestly. Auto Pilot is such a dangerous place..I think about Romans 7, "What I want to do I don't do, and what I dont want to do I do..." thats me, when I stop being intentional about my faith, I begin flirting with the devil. So, I have decided its time to fast from tv, and replace that with intentional time in the Word, reading, praying focusing my thoughts!
Also Facebook..I love facebook, and think it has been the best invention ever for people like me who have moved around, and love to keep in touch with old friends, however, I find myself wasting soooooo much time following other people's lives. This is a tough one, but I am taking a month completely off!
What will I do with all this extra time? Pop this puppy out of auto pilot, and hand over the controls to the One who should have had them all along!! Its time to make each moment count!!

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Mini Van


For those who have made fun of me for going to a mini van before I was even 25 years old...Guess whose AMAZING mini van Third Day is going to ride around in this next weekend while they are doing a show in the area...thats right! I am gonna have to get a shot of this at some point during the weekend:)!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009


I am planning a trip to Haiti in June and am so excited I might explode! Those of you who know me, know I have wanted to take a trip since before Siah was born, but it has never worked out...well, now I have my passport, getting my shots in a few weeks, have help with my family, and I have a team to go with! I think of where God has brought me from the time I first really wanted to go, and am excited for God's timing in this! I have had such a burden this past year to get involved in helping those in greatest need! The website www.onedaygive.com was one step, but actually going to Haiti, and meeting the people, and playing with the children, and snuggling the babies...this is a dream come true!
There are still some details that are coming together, with travel arrangements, and childcare here at home, so I covet your prayers if you think of it, that God would being everything together just right for this! I am so EXCITED!!!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Phase one Complete...

So the website is up!!!! www.onedaygive.com check it out! The only thing yet to be added is a link to record your name/city/and total pledge to what organization..stay tuned and we'll get it up! Now its time to spread the word, and get thing rolling! My girls and I are gonna try and meet this week, and lay out phase two, getting the word out! I am so excited to see what God has in store!
So again if you are interested in helping, or being involved at all please drop me a note on here or facebook, there are plenty of ways to help out, and the more people involved the more people we can reach!!
Let's put our love into Action!!!

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Back at the Bible Conference..


Sitting at the back table, in the midst of a winter weekend, thinking back to all the years I spent here...all the conversations I have had with so many different people in this very spot! I am left with this incredible gratitude for the the years God blessed us with serving here...what an amazing place that I know now will always hold a special place in my heart! Thank you Father, for this place, all the work you accomplish here, the hearts of those who serve here... I LOVE this place!

Friday, February 13, 2009

Dreamer

I am someone who loves to dream, and I get excited about things easily! Andy challenged me a while back about how much I talk about myself, and my dreams, and it really hurt..not like an "ouch I can't believe you would say that", but more of a "ouch, so true".. So I began to focus on the things I was talking about and being careful not to talk about myself so much, and intentional to ask other about themselves! What an amazing difference right away in my conversations, not to mention all the things I began to learn about people I never knew before since I was too busy on me... well, some time has passed, and over time I stopped thinking so much about it, and this week I found myself right back there...all about what God was doing in MY life, and through, ME, and me me me...Ugh! Seriously I am so disgusted with myself and this self centered nature of mine!!
Here I am again, earnestly seeking God, asking that He would again break this in me...so much more growing ahead!! Moving forward!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

ONE DAY

So a while ago I wrote about a dream I had of having one day this year and asking people from all over to give one day's pay to those around the world in need! I have been really challenged at my church to put my dreams into action, and do those things God has placed on my heart, so, two nights ago Andy bought me the website onedaygive.com, and over he next week or two I will getting this together, and ready to begin pitching to other people, churches, youth groups, and ministries! I currently have four organizations (ie world vision, bridge builders etc) on the list for people to choose from when they make their pledge! The day is 07-08-09, so mark it down! I was reading in 1 John 3:17-18 when God placed this on my heart...
"17If anyone has material possessions and sees his brother in need but has no pity on him, how can the love of God be in him? 18Dear children, let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth."
If you want to be a part, and join our team to get this message out, and Lord willing put our love into action as we help those in need leave me a comment with your info, or shoot me an email bethanyneedham@hotmail.com! The more people on board the better!

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Set Apart

We have been doing a series with our teen called set apart, and a series with our church about reaching 10,000 people in three years... It all has me thinking more about what my life is counting for, and where I spend my time and energy. It is frustrating when I hear myself say again and again I want to give it all, make a difference, give it all, and then instead of doing better I seem to get worse...more self centered, moody, sinful!
I know I am not satisfied living mostly set apart, and reaching a few people with Christ's love, but now I need to move from the dream, the vision, to the tasks I am called to. I want to begin a Bible study for young women who want to dig deeper, to become women of God, and to live lives that are truly set apart! I want to find an avenue to give to those in need, and touch the lives of people who don't even have basic needs met, and count on those of us who are so incredibly blessed! I want to follow through on things I have committed to do for so long, drama team, coffee dates, taking bigger steps of faith, and getting out of the "boat".
Its ok if this makes no sense to others cause this really was one of those blogs that I write more for myself than others...I need to write it somewhere I can come back to and remind myself!

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

PMS

I am not gonna lie, I am not a fan of PMS. More than discomfort, and slight mood swings I honestly feel like once a month some alter ego rears its ugly head, and I become someone I hate! Its like my flesh takes over and for a brief while I see who I would be aside from the grace of God! The problem is its not a glimpse into a dream its me being this way for real... So, I am confessing this and seeking wisdom...My girl issues are no excuse to b a jerk, and right now I am a jerk ever month right on cue to those poor people who have to live with me...are there practical things to help? Am I alone? Should I hide in a closet a few days each month for the safety of others? Really wanting to know...oh and my appologies to any guys who might stumble upon this, and be completely over informed right this moment...My bad!

Monday, February 2, 2009

Authentic Beauty

I wanted to write and ask if there is anyone who might read this and be willing to join me in prayer these next months as preparations are made for Authentic Beauty 09. I am so excited to return to MBC for this incredible weekend with teen girls and share the message God has for them, and am more and more aware of His desire to move in hearts...and also more and more aware, of my ability to get in the way! My prayer is that nothing would hinder His Word, and His Spirits working, and that we would come out with an even greater hunger to know God!!
Authentic Beauty is the first weekend in May, and if you or someone you know would like to attend, its an all girls conference ages 12-19! You can check it out at Monadnockbible.org if you want to know more!

Friday, January 23, 2009

Analogies the Modern Day Parables..

Once again my heart and mind are so full I can't seem to get anything done so I am gonna attempt to let some out via blogging, and then back to the grind here! I had an intense conversation with a friend today! She is atheist, and since we have only known each other a couple of months there has been only a couple of "faith based" conversations. She knows I am Christian, and she is very open about where she stands, and it has not been until today that the two have really come to a head.
Without trying to replay the two hours conversation, let me skip ahead, to after she asked if I really believe all that *@$! or if I think it could be made up stories. After sharing with her how God is more than just someone I read about in a book, He is as real to me as the chair she was sitting in, she asked why "we Christians" are always wanting people to become christians too, since gay people don't walk around trying to make the whole world gay. I tried to give her the best analogy I could come up with that she could understand from where she stood, basically stating that if she thought that being gay would save people from an eternity in hell, and that people who chose not to be gay would have a hopeless eternity, but those who chose to be gay would have a promise of great things, and an amazing eternity in heaven would she attempt to "convert" people to being gay? This led into the toughest question I hate to hear but don't doubt the answer to..." So are you saying that because I don't believe in Jesus or all this God @*!# I am going to hell?" I replied simply, yes. Bull@&#$ she said...and the conversation went on....
I share this because as I sat there I realized or was reminded of rather a simple truth, appart from Christ she will never know God! His Spirit has to do the work in her heart, and until He does all this "stuff" will be foolishness to her. Its a tough leap for me to see her even thinking about it, but God gave me a glimpse into His working when she told me after everything we talked about, she was still coming over tonight to chill with me and my friends!
He is able, and I will continue to trust, and pray, and if you think to could you lift a prayer as well! You dont need her name, God knows, if I witness any answers I'll be sure to record them here!

Monday, January 12, 2009

Java Java Java

No significance to this other than I realized something today... I have never really understood addictions. Honestly I can't really think of anything I craved on a regular basis..I am not one of those chocolate=life kind of girls, and though I love chips, and anything salty I have lived without them without any kind of withdrawal. So you see I never got how people got addicted to things to the point where they needed them to function properly...not until now that is! When I began working the 4:30 AM shift at BSC I made coffee a regular morning thing, thinking it would just assist me in being allert at such an early hour! Then this morning hit, and as usual I made my coffee, and headed out the door, not realizing until I reached work that I had left my mug of happiness at home:(. At first I was just a little bummed, after all there is something about having a warm drink in the early winter mornings thats comforting...however "a little bummed" quickly moved into an insane level of exhaustion, and period like moodiness! I swear each person coming through the door with their little "cup-of-Joe" was taunting me, laughing at my stupidity for leaving behind my energy source and daring to face the day caffeine free.
It was then my husband entered the scene, looking more attractive than ever, with my starbucks in hand...as I excused myself from my shift and headed to meet him, and at last fulfill this burning desire for java, I watched helplessly as my three year old knocked the table holding my very lifeline, pouring its contents all over the waiting room floor. Tears burned my eyes, and just as I am about to contemplate drinking from the well used, under cleaned gym floor, it hits me... I'm an ADDICT!!!
All this to say, Hi my name is Bethany, and I am a Coffe aholic:)!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Prayer

I have been thinking a lot about prayer...What is prayer? Why do I pray? How do I pray? I will be honest prayer is one of those things that has always been a struggle for me...something I had to be deliberate in doing, and not something I found myself doing with any kind of grace and ease. There have been many times in my life where I have been challenged in how I thought of prayer, and what prayer looked like, and seasons where I did a lot of praying, and some where honestly there was very little!
Our church just had a meeting tonight where we talked about the vision for our church, and the people we want to reach, and minister to outside our walls! It was a powerful night for me, as I was hit by the hard reality of how many people in just my own town are living in darkness, not knowing the truth of God's love for them! I know myself, and the vision, the dreaming of you will is that which comes easily! I could sit with a notebook for hours and just dream up insane ideas, and get all excited about each one....but what challenged me in this time was the call to prayer! I began to think about not just the importance, but the necessity prayer is in our moving forward with any vision...
So I am committing this month to take some real serious time, and place all my visions, and dreams aside just for a little while, and pray! Talk with my Savior, praise His name, bring my thoughts, and requests before Him, and lay everything down! I wonder one month from now when I look back what things I will have seen or experienced... I'll be sure to update you on that later on!!