Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Denise's Dailys

It's already December. I can't believe it. Sorry it's been a week since I've been on here. I'm feeling a little frustrated, because this is not turning out how I thought it would. I really didn't want it just to be a place where I ramble on about life and no one is out there. Maybe it's the format or the way it's set up. I'm going to pray about it and think about how to make it more interactive. Please share on here, guys. You have important things to say that God wants you to share to help someone else. We need each other.

On to more exciting things. We have our first weekend of Christmas concerts starting on Friday. 3 of the 4 of us have colds, so we're praying them away this week. Please pray God would work in a big way this weekend and next and that we'll have the endurance we need to get through 5 concerts in 10 days plus school, activities, work, etc.

Oh, and Happy Belated Thanksgiving. We all have a lot to be thankful for, don't we? I'm really unhappy with how I hear people on TV using the term "grateful" instead of "thankful." I've heard it a lot this year, and I can't stand how society is purposefully changing terminology to exclude God. We can be grateful about something, but if you're thankful, you have to thank Someone. People continue to push Him out of the picture, but let me just say--He's not going anywhere!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Chronic illness

When I was first started experiencing symptoms of my chronic illness, I had a lot of prayer and support from others. Many offered me encouragement through cards and phone calls or emails. One of the most precious things I received was a copy of a song written by a dear friend. He had written it during a very difficult period in his life and wanted to share it with me to encourage me. I hope it is an encouragement to you today.

Grace for Just Today

Wouldn't it be wonderful if up ahead I'd see
All the hills and valleys, curves and stops that wait for me.
But my loving Father knows that would be a mistake,
So gives me Grace sufficient for the NEXT step I must take.

We were made to live and bear the burdens of one day
Yesterdays' mistakes and hurts will all soon pass away
Tomorrow with it's wonder and it's mystery all unknown
Is more than we can bear today and known to God alone

It seems that when we're filled with worry over what's ahead
Or pining over yesterday, concerned with failures dread
That we are drained of Grace and strengthen that's given for today
God's Grace was not intended to be "used up" in that way.

And so today I'll live my life with all that life will bring
And face each test and joy and learn to smile and sing
Because I know that Grace is there for what may come my way
And all my needs will be supplied with Grace just for today!

Chorus: Grace for just today
For the things that will come my way
Yesterday is gone, tomorrow I can't see
But for today there's Grace enough for me

Matt. 6:34...II Cor. 12:7-10

Written by Don Krueger

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Denise's Dailys

So it's Saturday and we have to leave bright and early tomorrow morning for a Thanksgiving celebration in northern Indiana. I'm especially excited for tomorrow, because it's our last "normal" concert of the year. Then we'll be starting Christmas concerts. I'd sing the Christmas stuff all year, but we may get some funny looks in mid-July. Pray with us that we can facilitate a spirit of worship and thanksgiving to our Father for the amazing ways He's blessed. We want it to be a real celebration of His goodness.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Chronic illness-today

Chronic illness can be a roller coaster ride if you let it. There are days when the pain is great, even if it was for a great cause. Today is one of those days. The girls and I went to a museum yesterday and walked 1/2 the day, then we walked around a conference for an hour looking for Robbie. Later we were able to go to a Pacer's game and sit in a box seat, but I had to stand for most of the evening. We then had to walk back to a hotel room a ways away in the cold rain. One of these things alone would put me in a bad state physically, but all of them combined put me close to tears by 10pm. At these times, you can choose to wallow in self-pity and go the "woe is me" route (which I was definitely on the verge of doing), or you can pray for strength and comfort and focus on the fun that caused the pain. We did have a great time and made some wonderful memories together.

Chronic illness can consume you if you let it. Let's pray together that God won't let it consume us. In His power, we can conquer those feelings.

Denise's Dailys

It's Saturday, and we've just spent a wonderful evening and morning together as family. Sometimes you're given opportunities to do things together that won't cost you any money. Okay, I know it's not a frequent thing, but occasionally it does happen. I urge you to jump on those chances. These are the memories that will stay with you and with your kids for a lifetime. For us, the best memories are the free ones-the walks around the neighborhood, bike rides to the library, family game night, and couch-bed movie night to name a few. I treasure each one of these times.

Enjoy your family. Don't think of it as a chore to entertain your kids. Just have fun, and if you're having fun, I guarantee you they will be too.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Denise's Dailys

It's Friday! Yeah. The girls have a 1/2 day today, so we'll have some extra time together this afternoon. We're going to watch the musical "The Carousel." We all love watching old musicals.

We have music coming out our ears. We're working on Christmas music for our Christmas concert series starting in just 3 weeks. Yikes! We've got quite a ways to go. At the same time we're cramming in new music that we've written and are trying to learn so we can record the new songs. And trying to figure out what we need to do to finish the non-profit process. Lots going on, so we're hoping we can find some time to relax a little this weekend.

Please pray that we can figure out how to fit it all in and do what God wants us to get done. Do you ever find that you just keep doing, then sit back and think, "Huh, I wonder what I would have done today if I'd had God plan my day instead of just running around like a chicken with my head cut off" ? May God plan our steps today. May we only do what the Holy Spirit guides us to do, and please Lord, help us not get overwhelmed with the doing. But let us rest in You today.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Denise's Daily

It's Monday. Often this is a down day. It's hard to get motivated on a Monday. But after the Lord's day I had, I can't help but be motivated to get this week going. As a friend of ours said, it's all about the Power Source. If our power to live each day comes from the Holy Spirit living within us, we CAN conquer Satan. We Can!

I ask the Holy Spirit to fill me today completely, so that I am controlled by His power. I can not do it on my own. I can't. I am at the end of myself. And that's exactly where He needs me to be to do His work through me.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Denise's Dailys

It's Saturday. Yeah! We get to spend some time with some very good friends tonight. Unfortunately no concerts this weekend, but we get to go to our home church, have some much needed fellowship and be fed by the Holy Spirit as we dig into Ephesians. We're working through it in church, but the cool thing is that we also went through part of Ephesians at the conference we attended this past week. God brought different things to life from His Word in each situation.

We talked about Paul's ministry quite a bit at the conference and how exactly he structured his ministry. In church, we've been studying the passage more for growth as a church and as individuals who are part of a community. Isn't it amazing that His Word is living and so rich that we can read the same passage one day and learn a completely different truth the next day when we read it. I'd love to hear what passages you are studying and the truths God is teaching you. We can all learn from them.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Denise's Dailys

So, I've encouraged Robbie to write on here, but he's a very busy guy. He hopes to get on later tonight. I really don't want this to be just a place I go to write out my thoughts. I have one of those places already. It's called my journal. :) We need you to get involved here, and share your thoughts, concerns, encouraging verses you've been reading in Scripture...whatever you want to share. Just keep it family friendly, of course.

For today, I feel like God's on the verge of doing something really huge around us right now. I don't mean just in the world-although He's definitely preparing the world for something ginormous right now with all that's going on, but I'm talking about in our little world. God is preparing our hearts and opening up our thoughts to think about Him in a bigger way than we ever have before. He's used our pastor, books we've read, and situations He's placed us in, and is gently urging us to dream Big, ask Big, and expect Big things! I think it may be called growing our faith, but it seems different this time. In the past, the faith-growing has mostly been out of hardships. Amazingly, our all-powerful God can also grow faith just by expanding our minds.

Oh Papa, expand our minds today. And may the gap between my little world and the huge world around me grow more narrow as I see Your hand in all of it, and as you place us in situations where we have opportunities to reach the world for You!

Random Thoughts

One of the things we learned this weekend at our ministry orientation has to be shared with everyone. We were talking about "ministry" and how often we've said we have a ministry called Higher Ground. Well, we were wrong. That is one aspect of our ministry. Actually, every follower of Christ has a ministry-it's called life. Every breath we breathe is our ministry as believers. So if you are one God has sent to work in a business office or teach or work at the grocery store or wherever--you are a minister of the Gospel. Every hour. Every day. All the time. So live that way. And never feel you are not as worthy or as set apart as a pastor or missionary. God has set you a part for a special purpose that only you can fulfill-your calling.

And by the way, your calling isn't as much about what you do as it is about Whose you are! Great stuff.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Chronic Illness

For nearly 5 years, I have been trying to connect people with similar needs. I would meet someone in New York with the same physical symptoms as someone in Michigan and say, "I wish you could talk to them, because you may be able to help each other." So one of the purposes of this blog is to allow people to share their needs and reach out to each other for advice, prayer, and support.

When dealing with chronic illness, it's easy to feel alone and like no one understands. We know we have a God who created our body, and He knows our body better than we could ever hope to. He is also gracious enough to give us other believers to walk with us through the struggles and pain and to help us understand our own bodies better.

Let's share together here. Feel free to let people know what's going on with you and how we can pray for you. If you have specific questions for folks, ask them. Let's love on each other!


Saturday, October 18, 2008


Welcome to Higher Ground's blog. We've been wanting to start this for a long time. We are praying God uses this to bring together His children to share burdens, offer encouragement and support, make connections, and just love on each other the way we're supposed to be doing.

We've all got a lot going on with the economy, the war, and just trying to live out our faith in this corrupt, ungodly world. We are sinners just like you are, and we are thankful every day for His grace and forgiveness. Not only that, we're thankful for His presence in our lives helping us making it through, growing us, and stretching us. And even beyond that, He gives us a precious body of believers, our brothers and sisters in Christ, to help us along in the path. What a caring Papa. We are supposed to connect with each other. That's what the "church" of the Bible is for.

Please join us here frequently to share your hurts and triumphs, your prayer needs and questions, and what God is doing in your life. Maybe we all can help each other grow just a bit more.