Drifting Dreamers- by Deanna

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January 1st…as we entered into a New Year, almost all of us had dreams and goals in mind to make 2017 GREAT! As we approach the end of January, I have found myself at times wondering how I am going to execute on the vision that God has given me. On top of it, Satan has already tried to set up camp in my mind to make me believe that my current progress (or lack there of in some areas) is evidence that I might as well just forget about them…there’s always next year.

But then I came across Jeremiah 33:3 which says, “Call to Me, and I will answer you, and show you great and mighty things, which you do not know.” What an amazing feeling to know that we serve a God that PROMISES an answer…all we have to do is call out to Him!

When it comes to seeking direction on our next steps or maybe searching for connections to be within our network of accountability, it’s so easy to get overwhelmed and caught up in trying to figure things out on our own. As we get sucked up into a world of distraction, our dreams begin to drift into a heaping pile that quickly gets lost and maybe even forgot about. If expecting to receive comfort, we must obtain it through QUICK and CONTINUOUS prayer.

I love how this verse tells us that God will not only answer our prayer, but He will also show us GREAT and MIGHTY things that we did not know. In reading other translations, great and mighty things is also written as UNSEARCHABLE things, HIDDEN things, and REMARKABLE SECRETS which continues to point out to us that we can’t find the answers we are seeking on our own. A true testimony can only give GOD the glory! Unlike the homeless man on the corner requesting help from bystanders that may or may not throw a piece his way, God multiplies our request with an answer much greater than our prayer.

As you spend time with God, don’t think of your prayers as random messages being sent, because God is intimately concerned with EVERY aspect of our lives. Psalm 56:8 says, “You keep track of ALL my sorrows. You have collected ALL my tears in your bottle. You have recorded EACH one in your book.” Instead, let’s stand firm in the truth that God promised in Jeremiah and be thankful to Him in advance for the reply back!

Deanna

You can friend Deanna on Facebook and follow Journey Church on Instagram @journeychurch_mo.

The Last Time- by Angel

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I have had the absolute joy of being the mom to two phenomenal girls.  This year, our family will experience some more milestones. Our first baby girl, Ashlee, will graduate and move on to college and turn 18 in just a few months. Our baby girl, Emalee, will turn 16 and get her drivers license.  Of course, I have the typical ‘where did time go, how are they growing up so fast?!’ However, I also have the greatest memories and reflections of the last times.

I like to look back at life and remember the good, the bad, the ugly, the sweet, and everything in between.  As I think back over things concerning my girls, I find myself recalling the last times that I do not remember.  When was the last time they needed me to help them take a bath, brush their hair, cross the street, or fix their lunch? When was the last time they needed me to tie their shoes or teach them a new task? I can recall doing all these things but I do not remember the exact moment that it was the last time.

Appreciating moments has always been important to me. I like to soak it in and take a step back to look around. Make a mental note of the smells, sounds, who is present, and what exactly we are doing. As the saying goes ‘time flies when you are having fun.’ This statement is so true. However, I have also found that looking back can show us how far we have come and that too should be appreciated.  I am so thankful I had the chance to teach my girls many things but am equally thankful I no longer have to tie their shoes every day.

I think our relationship with God is sometimes the same way. Think of your walk with Christ. You had to learn how to pray, learn how to tithe, learn how to fully trust on God for everything. At some point, we all learn these thing but we do not always realize it in the moment. I like to think God enjoys these teaching moments but also appreciates when we ‘get it.’ Do not get me wrong, we should ALWAYS rely on God for everything. However, if we take a moment and look back at specific areas, for example when you first began praying (or if you just began) compared to a year later (newbies, hang tight, you will get there.) Another thought would be tithing. Most people who are new to church just give when they are at church. As you grow in your Christianity though, you learn God commands we tithe faithfully and sacrificially. God also uses people in our life to teach us lessons. When we finally listen to him and make a mistake for the last time, I have to believe it makes Him smile.

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I am so thankful I have had the last time moments with my girls, even if I did not realize in the moment that it would be the last time. I am also so grateful to have experienced last time moments in my relationship with God.  I hope this encourages you to look back and appreciate the last time moments in your life.

Smiles,
Angel

You can friend Angel on FaceBook or follow her on Instagram @angelmoonbeam.
You can also ‘Like’ our page @JourneyMO on FaceBook and follow us on Instagram @journeychurch_mo.

FIX YOU- by Danny

Chess king, chess pawn, contrast, reflection,

Don’t you wish it was that easy? I wish I could just say, “Alright, I am no longer going to eat junk. I am no longer going to act selfish. I am going to fix me” and it became so. That’s just not how it works, is it? Habits, addictions, and tendencies are giants that do not fall with words alone. One of the biggest problems with bad habits, addictions, and frequent tendencies is that it becomes our identity. That becomes the only thing we see when we look in the mirror. Others begin to label us as this or that, and that perception starts to overtake our personality. We begin to allow our “needs” to morph us into someone else. Someone we do not want to be. We begin to believe we are going to be trapped in this vicious circle forever.

So … we give in.

We take the road of least resistance and settle into our future.  We accept future of loss and depression.  We saw the potential we once had and now realize that we will never see it become reality so why try.  We say things like, “If that’s who you expect me to be then, that’s what I will give you.” “Nobody is going to give me a chance anyway.” “This is what I deserve.”

Checkmate.

Actions have consequences, but consequences do not have to last a lifetime. First, we need to learn how to find our identity through Christ. That means that I’m not going to live my life or have expectations according to man and what they want. I find my restoration and future in the way Christ sees me. The enemy would have us believe we are just a pawn, but Christ sees us as kings and queens. To have the strength to overcome these hindrances, we first must believe that WE CAN overcome.  We need to see ourselves as Christ see us.  We need restore our self-worth. We need to understand that maybe not everyone is ready to believe in the “new you” and that we can’t let that put doubt in our mind.

One of the most important, if not THE most important thing, is to find accountability. Find a friend, a group, a pastor, or counselor who has your best interest in mind. We give up way too easy on ourselves, especially the older we get. We can achieve greatness at any stage of life, even if we hit a couple speed bumps or get turned around completely. It won’t always be easy, but it will always be worth it to fix you.

Danny

Friend Danny on Facebook or follow him on Twitter @00brooksy
Follow Journey Church on Twitter @Journey_MO

Happy Anniversary To Us! -by Missy

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Little did I know the adventure my life would be when I married Jesse Quiroz 20 years ago today.  You may or may not know that Jesse and I met when I was 15 and he was 14 years old.  I wouldn’t say it was love at first sight but he captured my attention with his witty humor and his bigger than life stories!  I soon fell head over heels in love with this man!  I couldn’t wait to marry him and spend everyday of my life with him.  He definitely hasn’t disappointed; we’ve lived in different states and traveled to many different places.  Always doing what we could to serve others as we both felt from the beginning that we were called to do.  Now, three kids later, surrounded by family and serving our community with a staff and church family that we are in love with, I just couldn’t be more blessed! So in honor of today I thought it would be fun to list…

20 Reasons Why I LOVE Jesse A. Quiroz:

1. Follows God no matter what
2. Love’s Me  🙂
3. Best Dad Ever
4. A Selfless Leader
5. Loves people
6. Family is priority
7. He still makes me laugh everyday!
8. A good looking guy!
9. Loves to have fun
10. Is a Dreamer
11. A laid back guy, unless he’s hungry!
12. Leaves me letters to read
13. Sees the best in people
14. Fearless
15. Passionate
16. He keeps me grounded
17. Good at anything He tries
18. Admits when he’s wrong
19. Doesn’t worry what people think
20. My Superman

As I look back on all that we have done together it only excites me for what we have ahead!  I can’t wait to see where God leads us, leads our family, and this church as we continue to follow Him!  Happy Anniversary to US!

Missy

WHAT IF I WAS SINGLE- by Jesse

blog-graphicThis past Sunday, I took the last antibiotic pill I was prescribed to take by my doctor to overcome some insane congestion I had that was quite debilitating. We’re walking into the cold and flu season and it welcomed me with open arms. I hate being sick!

I was out of it for about ten days. Achiness, respiratory congestion, sore throat and coughing was my life during that time and it was horrible. The massive bummer of it all was the fact that I had to keep my distance from the rest of the family; seemingly quarantining myself for their safety and health.

It wasn’t cool not being able to connect with the boys over a game of basketball or to pick up my little girl and nestle a kiss into her fluffy little cheek. It was tough, but what had to be even tougher was the fact that my wife had to pick up all of my slack. If you ask my wife, she’ll tell you that when I’m sick, it’s harder on her than it is me. And I totally get that. We both carry responsibilities to make our home function (i.e., household chores, homework help, tending to a very demanding toddler, etc.)

She literally becomes Wonder Woman (which BTW opens in theaters nationwide next summer!)

There was a moment within that 10-day period watching Missy operate in overdrive mode where I thought to myself, ‘What if I was single? What if I didn’t have the blessing of having a partner to help with life and its responsibilities when I’m weakened or sick?’ Then I began to think about all of the single parents out there in the world.

Single parents don’t have the opportunity to ‘tag out’ of their family responsibilities and allow their spouse to play double duty until they heal. Single parents don’t have that luxury. They’re forced to find strength to push forward at all times, even when they find themselves in a 10-day congestive valley coughing their lungs out…they still have to help with the homework, they still have to draw the bath, they still have to be Wonder Woman or Superman.

I just wanted to take this blog post and send a gigantic SHOUT OUT to all of the single parents I know or don’t know in this world. You are true heroes, tasked with leading at a level that many of us don’t. Single parents, please know the investment you are pouring into your child is enormous and know your child will most assuredly see that…and in fact appreciate you TWICE as much as my kids will ever appreciate me. Because you did it for two! I pray you feel the power and resource of our God as you carry out your parenting in ways I and so many others truly appreciate you for.

In fact, let’s take a moment within the next day or two and find a way to encourage a single parent by grabbing them a cup of coffee at work, or bringing them over a KFC meal for dinner and telling them you love them, writing them a note of appreciation or simply just praying for them, because they are some amazing human beings and they should be honored as such.

‘Being a single parent is not a life full of struggles, but a journey for the strong.’ Meg Lowery

Much love to you! Especially during this cold and flu season!

 Jesse

Dad Life- by Tim

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Wow all I can say is wow!

Before I talk about our amazing God gift, I want to thank each and every one of you that prayed, said kind words, brought us meals, and even just smiled with a nod. Ashley and I are so blessed to have a church family like you all. Thank you, thank you, thank you!!

Soooo, I’m a Dad…On October 10, 2016 at 11:48P, Mabel Elizabeth Overstreet was pushed into this world.  I was shocked to say the least.  Ashley is a trooper. She was actively pushing for over three hours straight. I can tell you I have never felt so empathetic in all my life; that looks horrifyingly painful. My wife is a super-human.

We are blessed, every time I see her smile I can’t help but feel this amazing love, she is perfect even though she can fill up a diaper to the point of overflowing. The moment she arrived and I saw her for the first time my life changed. It was crazy and I can only relate it to one thing.

This past Sunday our SAVOR leader, Sandy Miller, continued the talk on the fruits of the spirit.  She said something in her message that struck me. She said “When you experience the love of Christ you are never the same.” That is so true. When I first felt God’s love it changed me and I began a journey to seek after God, the only thing I can compare that “feeling” with is when I saw Mabel for the first time. It was a love I can’t explain; except this time, I was on the giving side of that love. It really opened my eyes up to the way Christ feels about all of us. We are each his children and we were born into his family, His blood flows through our veins (I did steal that line from one amazing song No Longer Slaves.) He is our Father if we make the choice to follow him. And by following him I mean seeking him out, learning about him, being with people that are seeking him as well. When you experience Gods love you are never the same and when you start to accept Gods love your life begins to change.

DAD LIFE…I love to imagine the feeling God gets when we turn to him and are born again.

Check out Sandy’s talk on our podcast here and catch up on all of the talks there I pray it impacts and blesses your lives.

 

God Bless

Tim

Friend Tim on Facebook or follow him on twitter @timoverstreet1
Follow Journey Church on Twitter @Journey_MO

I Cannot Wait- by Tim

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As many of you may know my wife Ashley is pregnant and that is very exciting. I have always wanted to be a Dad and by Monday afternoon I should be holding one amazing little girl.

I want to share something with you that most people do not know about me … I have always wanted to be a Dad, I just have. I remember as a kid thinking when I grow up and have kids I’m going to get them a motorcycle or a go-cart, something really fast that they can ride. Will I still do that?  Yes, but I’ll make her wear a helmet.

I’m going to wrap this up really because I may be leaving for the hospital shortly-I don’t know … As we get closer to having one amazing kid I can only think about one thing: how much I already love her even though I haven’t even met her face to face yet. It is more than a feeling and it’s hard to explain but it has allowed me to see the flip side of how Christ feels about me.  I think I’ve already forgiven her for using crayons on the wall or even sneaking out of the house to go fishing. Not that there won’t be correction for her actions but I think I have already forgiven her.

I cannot wait to post pictures and share with you all our new little girl.  Please be praying for a quick and easy delivery for my amazing wife, Ashley. Just so you all know, I asked our Doctor last night if we could get a discount on the hospital bill since I will be performing minor surgery cutting the chord. She laughed then said no …

 

God Bless

Tim

 

Friend Tim on Facebook or follow him on twitter @timoverstreet1
Follow Journey Church on Twitter @Journey_MO