Thursday, December 31, 2015

New Year New You: The Truth Behind Change

In Christ you are a new creation, the old has gone the new has come~ 2 Corinthians 5:17

Last year I made a decision.  I got tired of being sick and tired, literally.  I committed to change.  I've dieted many many times in my life. I've starved myself, obsessed over working out and beat myself up over every cookie, every french fry.  I've spent many years of my life on the body image roller coaster.  Putting much of my value and worth in the numbers on the scale.  So much of my life I valued what others saw as beautiful more than my heavenly Father. Change seemed impossible.


 Last year it was different.  I spent over a year feeling physically crappy, overweight, depressed and lacking in joy.As I began to review what in the world was going on I prayerfully met the idea of change.  That's the thing about change, it's now seemingly impossible to me without Christ's backing.  As humans our nature is set in such a way, because of free will, that change is very hard.  Our selfish nature, pride and willfulness gets in the way of change.  We want so badly to be more organized, have better will power, stay the course, beat the addiction, yet so many times when the rubber meets the road we find ourselves at the end of the year 10 lbs heavier and no better than how we ended last year.  So, I get it.  I get that we may all have the desire for the completion of a resolution and beat ourselves up at the end of yet another year where we failed again.

The difference in this change for me was that instead of journeying out into the big thing alone, I invited God to go with me.  I sought his desire for this part of my life instead of my own.  This changed my perspective. Instead of change being about what size pants I wore or getting a medal in the 1/2 marathon I wanted to run it became more about honoring God with my life and the way I lived it.

Enough about me.  May I encourage you to invite God into these places of your life that you are wanting change in but can't figure out why every year it's the same.  Here's some things you may be holding onto tightly:

Your single life
Your marriage
Problems at work
Weight loss
Sex addiction
Food addiction
Pornography
Loneliness
Past hurts
Drug addiction
Alcohol abuse
Material possessions
Your children
Your home
A health issue
Social media addiction

How do you invite him in to these places? Pray.  Invite him to intercede in your life, to be the guide in your journey. So often we step out, ahead of him and expect him to work it all out. Oh sweet sister it doesn't work that way. God must be the leader in your dance, he is not in the business of following.
30 lbs lighter, free of daily depression, free of illness and joint pain I literally stand before you changed both physically and spiritually.  I invited God into that change, and he was the author of this story.

Who will write the pages of your book this year?

Can I suggest on anthem for 2016:

Much Love,
Chrystan

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Let Forgiveness Reign This Holiday Season

Merry Christmas Friends, Family and faithful readers from Ferrell Farms!

This is going to be short and sweet today (well maybe not super short...). I have one thing tugging at my heart to share with you. One thing you may not want to hear. One thing that may leave you shaking your head and running for the next exit!

In this season of hope and joy it is time to let love reign and forgive.

As you step into that door, knowing that that family member that was so terrible to you last year is going to be there let me urge you to let forgiveness reign.  I know it's hard. I know it's impossible.  I know they hurt you to your core, but you can do it. Do you want to know why I can say with great confidence that you CAN forgive them even though it hurts to just think about it?  Because I did it, it was impossible, but with Christ forgiveness should flow out of us like water off a waterfall. Freely, with no just cause.

Someone in my life hurt me so badly this Fall (I am not vague-booking here, I am going to protect my family by not saying who. But know that it is not you. If you are thinking it is you, it is not you)  Anywhoo, this person hurt me both emotionally but also physically and mentally. She used forced on me and slayed me with her words in this most painful places.  She attacked all that I hold dear and it hurt me.  I found myself begging her to go, to leave, so that I would not also hurt her.  It was hard, it was just the hardest thing.

Since then we have had to coexist in spaces and I have had to bite my tongue.  Yes, this is possible, the online generation, the social media generation is not used to holding back the airing of all the dirty laundry. This is a lost art form, we should work on in 2016.

In Christ I am a new creation. As I have leaned into him through this he has shown me the ways he forgives me.  How he loves me in my ugliest places and I have been able, through prayer and reading scripture, to forgive her.  I have found ways to put my hurt away, to give grace and let God take over. That's the thing about grace, it is UNMERITED favor.  She doesn't deserve forgiveness, she hurt me very badly but I don't deserve forgiveness or grace either.  Grace is not earned it is given, freely, unmerited.  So, thank you God for this grace you gave me. Thank you for showing me how to truly forgive, even when someone is not seeking forgiveness.

May I say again, without Christ this is foreign and impossible.  Maybe it even seems ridiculous.  How could I forgive her after all she did?  Absolutely, it is impossible and I felt like it was impossible. Until I invited God into the problem and realized nothing is impossible in him. He is all about making the impossible come to fruition, that brings him GREAT Glory, and isn't that my goal...

Do it.  Forgive.  Let God do the impossible in you today.  You may have to work really hard at it.  It's not easy, but so worth it.  So WORTH IT!  I am not best friends with her.  I will keep a safe distance right now. But forgiveness has freed me, glorified my God and made me understand his love for me even more.My prayer is that she will see Christ in me and seek him.  That others will hear this story and be changed for the glory of God is the goal.


Hope. Love. Forgiveness. These things are found at the foot of the cross.  If you haven't gone there, may I suggest today seeking forgiveness in Christ so you can also be free.

May your eyes be on him this Christmas.

Much Love,
Chrystan

PS- Forgiveness also applies to yourself. God will forgive you maybe already has, you should also forgive yourself.

Thursday, December 17, 2015

What Dreams May Come: The Journey of an Un-Wed Mother

10 years ago this week there was a frightened girl. A frightened girl who looked into the future and saw only the looming darkness of the unknown.  Covered in shame, rejected by friends, judged by many, she leaned heavily on the few that stayed. As she stepped one heavy foot in front of the other into the darkness she found there was light, because He cannot help but be light in the darkness and he was there.  He was there in the eyes of her parents as they gave grace and love. He was there in the hand of her friend, who literally held her and walked with her each day, each hour, each minute, there till the end.  God was there in the dark to create light and boy did he ever shine brightly.



10 years ago this week I was pregnant, I was not married, I felt alone, ashamed, abandoned and unworthy of love.  Unworthy of the love of my parents, the love of my friends, my family, the love of the man who helped create this child, I felt a shame that was unloveable.  Then there was light.  There was darkness, then there was light.

When Cohen entered my life after 9 months of darkness, loneliness, fear, and shame there was light.  I saw the light of love in his eyes like I had never seen in my life.  I realized that there was grace, God's grace. There in that moment God could not be in darkness so he lit up my life and I was forever changed.



I didn't hold shame after that.  I broke free of that, God freed me there in that moment when I saw light, I was free from the darkness of shame.  The next two years of my life had many trials.  I was struggling to build my career, find my place in the church (which felt impossible), care for Cohen and navigate the awkwardness of co-parenting and all the pain that came with that.  But he held me through the most trying times I have ever endured.

He held me through my family. With love in their hearts for the prodigal daughter they held me with batted breath to see what God would do with this.  Now I see that their hands were the hands of the Father, dripping with love and abundant grace they stood steadfastly by my side, waiting...loving.





He held me through my friend Nicole, the friend who could've walked away but stayed.  She could've have said I was too much, but she prayed instead.  She was there, in the delivery room, holding my hand and crying with me.  She was there when light came back into my life and that is something I could never repay. This was Jesus in her life and grace in mine.  I am forever thankful for a friend that injected herself into my life in such a way that God's light shined in darkness and broke the chains of shame in me.  I pray God blesses her abundantly for this act of love.



He held me through trials.  For 2 years of my life I journeyed through this new life. I had some HUGE stumbles back into darkness but never chose to stay.  I battled depression and the lie of unworthiness that echoed in my mind.  I moved, I found a rekindled love for Christ and I marched forward into the unknown with batted breath, knowing that good was in me.

Cohen Michael Fuller changed me.  He still changes me.  I look into his eyes and I still see that light.  The light that on December 20th, 2005 woke me up and brought me out of the pits.  Each step forward was not easy, but has been nothing but blessing. As I reflect on what this child is I am reminded that no other struggle has been more painful yet more full of abundant love and grace.  I have learned so much through these last 10 years. Mostly that we just all need to be grace givers.  My Pastor says we should be the most joyful people, because in Christ we are made new. I would say yes to that and add to my own story GRACE GIVER. A joyful grace giver, because I have been blessed by God's grace and the grace of team Cohen.

I am immeasurably blessed and forever changed by the 10 years I have had with this child.  I have allowed myself to dream big dreams for him because I know this future is no longer filled with darkness, only great light! Cohen, God has used you to change me forever. My prayer for you is that you will let your light shine in the dark places. That you will lay down your nets and follow him at all costs, knowing that there is no greater life to live.  You were BEAUTIFULLY, WONDERFULLY and FEARFULLY Made in his precious grace filled image.  I love you so much but GOD loves you more.

To the rest of you, hug a single mom today, believe me she needs it more than you can ever imagine. Bathe her in love and grace, the struggle is real!

Much Love,
Cohen's Mom


PS- Here's a look into our journey.  Cohen says this is our family song. I couldn't be more in agreement!

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

With Reckless Abandon: My 34th Year


For my 34th year I want to live with reckless abandon.  Now, before you start to dial the mental facility I want you to hear and know what this means to me.  I spent a lot of time in my life living for myself.  Really more than 25 years at the least was all about me.  I am learning and growing into a space that has caused me to turn outwardly and see the world. I see loss, despair, hunger, loneliness, emptiness, an un-Godly scary world, and sadness around me.  I see the church huddled in their pews refusing to turn outward for fear of the world.  I see fear of man instead of fear of God.  In my 34th year I want to live facing outwardly in reckless abandonmentt. I want to chase, sprint, after God's desires and I want you to run alongside me.



Reckless Abandon: Throw everything you can into it, without caring about the consequences. Give it all you've got.

I will not let my duties fall away. I will still put God first, I will still seek to serve and love and care for Farmer Adam. I will tend to my family, serve them and love them fiercely. All these things will not fall away, they will only gain from a life lived with great intention.


Great intention. Focused on the prize. I will outwardly face and attack the needs of the community around me. God has me broken for the broken. I have prayed so often, "Lord may I see them as you do, break my heart for what breaks yours." He has done that this year. He placed a broken family in my path, a foster child in my home and gave me a heart for the hurting community of women around me. I don't want this masquerade of church life to go on around me. I want authenticity and action.


This year is the year of outreach in my church. I am ready Lord, send me. I will go where you will go, your people will be my people, you will be my God. To the ends of the earth or just down the driveway, I will seek you Lord with Reckless Abandon. Lord, use my gifts and talents for your glory. You have made me to do your work, you have created my FEARFULLY, WONDERFULLY and BEAUTIFULLY in your image Lord. My 34th year and those that follow will be spent chasing hard after you, FEARING GOD NOT MAN. I will seek you with all of my days.


Thank you for hearing my hearts cry readers.  What is yours? If you don't know the answer to that question, may I suggestion opening the nearest Bible and begin to read, start with 1 John. 

Much Love,
Chrystan

Thursday, December 3, 2015

God Heal Our Land: A Hashtag For the People

I am a hashtag girl, love them!  I can't sit here and explain the hashtag but I can say they are a way to make something "trend", to be follow-able online.  So, a hashtag (I use #boymom multiple times a week) goes with a picture you post or tweet or a status update and it follows you forever.  Yes, folks, forever it becomes a part of your online thumbprint FOREVER (she says in a Sandlot type tone)  This week our country saw yet another mass shooting.  The same familiar things played out, the same type of media coverage came onto our screens, we've seen the evacuation again, the police chase and the hunt to take these shooters down.  We have basically had a shooting for everyday this year, that's sad fact.  Our President and many others have stated in interviews, in tweets and posts "Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families during this time". #godisntfixingthis Is the latest hashtag to blow up the Internet today.  The back lash of this was this headline:
How very bold of Daily News to post this as a front pager today.  Then came the online quarrel and cruelness back and forth; Christians and Non-believers hashtag about this post and the #godisntfixingthis and it gets uglier and uglier.  I heard 3 believers that are hosts of the Today show this morning covering the story of this hashtag and Daily News cover. With each statement my heart ached for them.  They were nervous to speak on it, fumbling through their words, trying to tip toe through standing up for their faith.

Let me say in boldness and truth my God's agenda is not your agenda.  He has every right to let us sit in our sin.  You want him to fix a country that has turned their back completely on him?  You want him to lay his hand of peace and love and protect us when we lash out in hatred toward each other. When we bathe ourselves in sin with porn at our finger tips, pastors on infidelity websites all while feeding our egos by obsessing over how many shares and likes our selfie gets.  Lord, forgive us, Lord forgive me.  Christians we are luke warm. Non-believers you are headed down a scary road.  Instead of fighting you and defending my powerful God, let me tell you what prayer has done in my life.

We just built a house. We just moved in to our dream home, that we saved and sacrificed for.  Not just a few months after we moved in, my husband lost his job.  Out of nowhere for no just reason my husband was let go of a good, steady, well paying job for a company that he had been a leader in for 10 years.  Financial security, gone.  And everything stood still and for a moment I felt panic creeping in.  I did what I know to do. I met with God.  I went to the end of my farmhouse table and sat and I cried out (literally, ugly cry) to my God. I warded off panic and fear with prayer.  For over 2 months nothing, no job.  For  almost 3 months we prayed. Our friends prayed. Our family prayed. Our church prayed.  I prayed for my husband to find worth outside of the strong provider gene he has. I prayed peace over us, that no matter what we would find refuge in God.  I never doubted that God would provide for us, never once, God's got this we said over and over to friends who didn't understand why we weren't panicking.  For these months I saw God molding my husband, drawing him into the word and walking closely with him.  I cry now typing it out, because it was beautiful.  Today, this morning GOD FIXED THIS.  My husband walked out of my house at 6:30am to start his new job.  I praise God for his provision of a job, and actually a better paying job!  But I want you to know I praise God because during this time of trouble he provided a calm in our home, he made this time sweet, he brought us nearer to him in many ways. Our marriage is stronger and our walk with God is so very sweet.
Today I cry out to God in prayer for my country, for this world.

Your hashtag doesn't make me doubt God. Your headline doesn't make me hate you.  Your Internet hatred of my sweet Savior only draws me closer to him.  Your attack on prayer only makes me pray harder.  Because scripture tells me I should be fervent in prayer and that if I pray, if I remain humble and turn from these wicked ways that he will heal our land.  God Bless America Land that I love...let us get back to the roots this country was built and away from hashtags that tare away at that.
#godhealourland #godhealyourpeople #godforgiveus



Much Love,
Chrystan


Wednesday, November 25, 2015

What A Pastor's Wife Wants You to Know



If you are a church goer then it is likely you have a Pastor. If you have a Pastor then it is likely that sitting in the front pew of your church (or close) is a Pastor's wife.  She's probably smiling. She's probably looking all put together and calm.  You may look at her and think she is a picture of perfection.  The ladies of your church may put her just under the pedestal that they place her husband on each week, which is scary for her because it's a long frightening fall down off of a pedestal that high.  Because guess what, she is a human person.  A human person with all the feels, with the anxieties of expectations not met, with the fear of letting someone down in her humanness, walking around with the weight of the expectation that goes with her title, she is a real girl with a big calling.  Can you walk with me into this for a little while?  Are you loving on your Pastor's wife? Have you gotten to know her?  Have you placed her on a high pedestal of unattainable expectations?  Let's chat.

Think about getting to church events. You mommas with babies, isn't it the HARDEST feat ever to get your kids up, fed, dressed decently, PLUS getting yourself ready and all out the door in time for church. I mean, exhausting just typing about it right?  Imagine doing that by yourself every single Sunday morning. Along with Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and Easter and all the church events in between.  When your husband is called to Pastor, you are called to support. When your husband is at deacons meetings, hospital visits, weddings, funerals, church services, evening service, business meetings, southern baptist convention, pastoral leadership meetings and all the things in between that leaves you running the home.  Imagine doing all that and breezing into the doors on Sunday morning looking perfectly put together like a pastor's wife should.  Then jumping into the role of greeter, counselor and even sometimes mediator.  Imagine all the pressure to attain perfection in this, as the people all watch you waiting for you to slip up.

So, can we just love on these women girls. Can we give them safe places?  So many Pastors' wives are told to live lonely lives, because people are not safe for them.  Because the women in the church expect perfection from their pastors wife and will not give them safe places to be real, and let me just say, how un-biblical is that.  How can we expect perfection for our members in ministry?  That's not biblical at all!  No one is perfect! No one can have it all together all the time. We need ugly cries and real hugs.  We all have hard days, and weaknesses and imperfections of course.  Guess what, our Pastor and his wife are not exempt from that. They are chasing after grace just as we are.  They are called to lead but not to perfection.  They are called to serve but will not always do it perfectly.  Have you hugged your Pastor's wife lately? She needs a real, honest hug. One that she can sink into and breathe out the weight of perfection laid on her by the world, by the church. It's harder than you think.

Ruth Graham is maybe not a well known name in your house.  Maybe you don't know anything about this woman, but she was mighty.  I don't know her personally, but I've heard she was amazing.  I don't know her inner self, but I've heard of her great heart in a life lived serving alongside her husband in ministry. It's funny to say serving alongside, because really she was an extremely important player in the Billy Graham ministry but she was completely behind the scenes.  In order for a Pastor to serve and have a family it seems common that the Pastor's wife takes on a huge support role.  Billy Graham's ministry called him out of their home with 5 children for many days, many months and many years.  Ruth lived out her ministry role by running their household and supporting her husbands call to Pastor.  Lives, so many lives, have been changed because of the role that she filled. It was a hard, lonely, long role at times.  But she served in mighty ways.

Decision Magazine wrote these things about Ruth Bell-Graham:

Ruth’s rock-solid support of Billy’s ministry and her ability to manage their household on her own earned the respect of his Team. “There would have been no Billy Graham as we know him today had it not been for Ruth,” said Billy’s longtime assistant, T.W. Wilson. '

“What I missed!” he wrote in “Just As I Am,” his autobiography, “And what Ruth missed by not having me to help her. Whenever I did get home, I got a crash course in the agony and ecstasy of parenting. If Ruth had not been convinced that God had called her to fulfill that side of our partnership and had not resorted constantly to God’s Word for instruction and to His grace for strength, I don’t see how she could have survived.”


Our Pastor's have amazing, God honoring, exhausted, poured out women serving alongside them.  Helping them get up to the pulpit each Sunday.  Praying for them, lifting them up, and walking through the messy of ministry because lets face it they work directly with humans and we are messy. Let us love our Pastor by loving his wife like Jesus does, fiercely and with abundant grace.  Let's let them be real people doing real life things for we are all FEARFULLY and WONDERFULLY made in his BEAUTIFUL image.  Grace upon grace abounds... Go hug a Pastor's wife this week!

Much Love,
Chrystan

PS- More than 80% of Pastor's wives feel unsupported, burnt out and unappreciated by their Church. Here is a great little blog that tells you how you can support and care for your pastor's wife.
http://www.charismamag.com/life/women/23209-7-ways-to-support-your-pastor-s-wife
and also here is a 30 days of praying scripture for your pastor's wife:
https://www.reviveourhearts.com/articles/30-day-praying-for-your-pastors-wife/



Tuesday, November 17, 2015

The Unanswered Prayer

What if you prayed your heart out?  Just poured your guts out to your creator. What if you met him each day, in the throne room, and pleaded? Just laid at his feet and gave it all.  What if you cried all your cries and made all the pleas and what if...what if...it didn't turn out the way you wanted it?  Then what happens?  What do you do? Walk away from it all.  Throw in the holy water and call it a day.  Stand firm on your right to get what you want, protest, have a sit in.  Lord you said you would give me the desires of my heart,  I rightfully ask for a prayer recount.  You said...


Did he say that?  That he would give me everything I ask for.  Well I mean if that's the case then lets all just start requesting all the things.  I deserve to have that trip to Fiji I have desired for years!  I deserve that music career I've been asking for since I was 6, I mean it's about time Lord, right?  You know I packed all my stuff once.  I had the idea to go to Nashville and make it big.  And wouldn't you know days before I was going to run away to Nashville, my life was dramatically altered and I stayed. I had prayed, my heart desired, but it was not answered, or was it?

Didn't he say though that he would give me the desires of my heart?  I prayed hard this week. I prayed, my friends prayed, my family prayed. We all prayed.   It did not turn out the way I wanted it, the way I knew it would. I was sure God was going to move in a miraculous way.  Now I am heartbroken, searching in the dark, are you still good Lord? Are you still good?  It is quiet now, the kids are in bed, the dust from the day has drifted down to the floor and there is silence, are you still good? Didn't you say, desires of my heart...but didn't you say that...

Psalms 37:3-4
Trust in the Lord, and do good: dwell in the land and befriend faithfulness. Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.

Yes in fact he did say that, but we leave out the first section leading into the delight. TRUST in the LORD, do GOOD, DELIGHT ourselves in him. BE FAITHFUL to him.Then he will give you the desires of your heart. But guess what, after doing all this trusting and delighting and being faithful that just may change you.  It just may align you with God's ways, with peace in God's ways. Matthew Henry's commentary of these verses touches on this very thing:


"He has not promised to gratify all the appetites of the body and the humorous of the fancy, but to grant all the desires of the heart, all the cravings of the renewed sanctified soul. What is the desire of the heart of a good man? It is this, to know and love and live to God, to please him and to be pleased in him."

What else can we take from God's words:

Ephesians 1:11-12
In him we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will, so that we who were the first to hope in Christ might be to the praise of his glory.

Read it again, HIM WHO WORKS ALL THINGS according to his plan. His plan, not mine.  For his glorification not mine.  You see ladies, I prayed my guts out, they were overly exposed laying out for all to see but that's doesn't mean I get to dictate the path that life goes. If I am TRUSTING in our GOOD FATHER, if I am DELIGHTING myself in him, if I stay here in FAITHFULNESS he will make it ok.  Ok in my heart, ok in my walk, ok in my life. He will heal the part of my heart that is broken and he will make straight a path that I could not see before for all the crookedness.

Tonight I close my computer saying out loud and truly knowing, he is still good.  His plans and ways are not my ways but I know from experience that his path is better than mine. When I wanted to leave for Nashville there were 2 lines on a pregnancy test and so I stayed, a life forever changed.  I prayed though, that I would have a music career.  I prayed hard that someone would discover me, that I would get to go be a famous country singer and leave behind all the things, start over.  My life was forever altered because of those two lines that stood in the way of my so called prayers. An unanswered prayed I am thankful for today. Our God is greater and does more than I could ever imagine.So tonight I say it is well Lord, it is well.

Are you praying your guts out for something right now?  I am praying for you in this process. My girls this life here is hard, but we pray to the mighty creator of this spinning world. He is still on his throne and he is still good. Our prayers come into the throne room like a sweet aroma this week, they are answered in alignment with God's will in a masterful plan that we could never ever imagine.  Just as you are a part of this plan FEARFULLY and WONDERFULLY MADE in his caring, loving, kind image. Sending all my love to you for all of your hard places.

 I leave you with this amazing song by All Son's and Daughters, thank you Lord for music.

Much Love,
Chrystan

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Called to Serve


Service. Serving. To serve.  What does that mean to you?  Do you think of a waiter?  Do you think of a service member? Do you think of the self-serve buffet?  Serving those around you is maybe not the first thing that comes to mind.  Maybe it is.  Serving ones tribe can be tricky.  Being called to be of service, to serve lovingly and without bitterness can feel impossible at times.  I struggle here in the very strangest of ways.  Let me explain…



I passionately serve people in my community, in my church and even strangers I don’t know.  I want to help them, I want to feed them, I want to do the things they need done.  I serve on boards, committees and teams.  I’ll feed you, clothe you, plan for you, pray for you. I'll fill a box full of toys and goodies for you.  I’ll help you find a job, connect you with a new friend, bake for you, cook for you and maybe even clean for you.  But when it comes to serving within my own home…now that’s just a whole thing.

It’s hard to serve your family with a joyful heart day in and day out.  It takes a lot of prayer and commitment to stay the course.  To give of oneself when oneself is poured out and worn out.  I get it.  Dear laundry, I hate you all the time!  Dear dishes, you pile up on purpose I think sometimes!  Dear children, didn’t I just feed you!  Dear Husband, why do you need a cup of water in every room!  Dear house, please put yourself on self-clean and move on with it!  I mean it’s constant acts of service around here.  The feeding, the toileting, the providing for. I mean wash, rinse, repeat right?  Well I’m here to say I am guilty of the bitterness of the act of service for my family.  Something that comes so naturally to me outside of these walls is such a struggle here when it should be an out pouring of love on the people needing so much of me.


Needing so much of me, this is maybe where the rubber meets the road.  It’s because there is so much need, so much pouring out, so many things for all the persons at Ferrell Farms.  And so it becomes a heart issue.  If I love God, then I am to serve joyfully, here’s the word… 

 Colossians 3:23-24 “Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ.”


I am serving the LORD in what I do!  This should spur me on while I fold the laundry or stay up late working to keep up.

Philippians 2:5-7 “Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men.”

I love this verse because it reminds me that Jesus served us by being emptied out and taking the form of a servant.  I mean no clearer picture here of how I should live. To be emptied out of myself and filled up with the goodness of a serving heart and mindset.  Also, I can take away from this that GOD will fill me up on those days where I am completely emptied.  He will provide.

Mark 10:45 “For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”

Jesus came to serve and to show us how to serve in selfless love.  I want that.  I am determined to serve my sick husband (he’s the worst sick person of ever) with a happy heart tonight.  I am determined to serve these exhausting little people with the pouring out of myself, in the knowledge that God will fill me back up again. I am praying this over my life.


Imagine a fountain.  The top tier, pours into the bottom tier, pours into the big basin which goes back up and starts again.  I pour out only to be re-filled through the act of service.  We do not serve alone, the Father is with us pouring back in as we go. Thank you Lord for that.

FEARFULLY WONDERFULLY and BEAUTIFULLY MADE in his image girl, that is what you are.  Serve your guts out, to God by the glory! Let us be joyful in our service this week sisters!

Much Love-

 Chrystan

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

A Treasure Map Through Suffering

“You don’t really know Jesus is all you need until Jesus is all you have.” - Tim Keller

I don’t understand suffering. It’s a concept I cannot wrap my brain around.  I am a human person and suffering is something that I get stuck walking through.  Easily I shake my fist at my sweet Lord.  I say “How could” “Why are you” “What about your goodness”  “What about your love” “Don’t my tears mean anything to you Lord?”  “What about her faith, don’t you see she is a good and faithful woman?”  “What about my faith?  Don’t you see I am praying over here, do you hear my prayers Lord?”  “You can answer them Father.  You can strike this down and make this well.  I don’t understand!”  

I don’t understand so I go to the word, The Bible, it’s the only thing I can do.



The Bible is not meant for beating on.  The Bible is not meant to be a step stool for us to stand on so we can look down on those around us. The Bible is not meant for what so many use it for, self-righteousness and hurt. For lashing out on, for judgment and agendas.  This sweet book, the Holy Bible, is meant as a guidebook for the lost.  Think of it as a map, a treasure map.  Right now there is suffering in this life. Right now today my family is hurting and confused and so am I.  So today, I go to The Holy Bible, and start back down the path for treasure. Let us run, not walk, to the treasure of the word of the Lord.

The Lord is a stronghold for the oppressed a stronghold in times of trouble. And those who know your name put their trust in you, for you, O Lord, have not forsaken those who seek you. Psalm 9: 9-10

And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. Romans 8:28

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. For as we share abundantly in Christ’s sufferings, so through Christ we share abundantly in comfort too.  If we are afflicted, it is for your comfort and salvation; and if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which you experience when you patiently endure the same sufferings that we suffer.  Our hope for you in unshaken, for we know that as you share in our sufferings, you will also share in our comfort. 2 Corinthians 1: 3-7

The verses go on an on.  Something to remember is we are not meant for here.  We were never meant to be out of communion with God.  We were supposed to be spending our days in a garden in the presence of the Lord, being in direct relationship with God and loving him with all our days.  This world is full of pain and suffering and hardness and death.  God is literally counting up till the day when we are reunited with him in Heaven and can get back to the plan. The plan of him, with us all our days.  He is anxiously awaiting our arrival into his courts. Until that day comes there will be bad days, sick babies, sin, pain and suffering. But we can look forward to the future of being with our good Father someday.  Until then I can meet him in prayer and in his word through the Holy Bible.  Until then, I will hunt for treasures stored up in Heaven.


Sister, if you are struggling today. If you don’t know the Lord or if you have shut him out of your life may I encourage you to lean into his word today? If you don’t know where to start I suggest Ephesians and Psalms those are some of my favorites.  Reach out to the believers around for your love and support.  We are here, struggling through the same life and have troubles as well. Let us band together in love and solidarity for the glory of God, the one who made us FEARFULLY and BEAUTIFULLY in his image of LOVE.

Much Love,
Chrystan

PS- I know there is so much more on this topic, we could go deeper and deeper. There's so much theology here and so many more words. Maybe someday we will study this topic together. Today these are the words God gave me, for someone out there that needs to here just this.

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