Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Stepping Stones by Karlene Jacobsen

I want to welcome Karlene Jacobsen to my blog this week.
Karlene and I had a prayer partnership going for the 21 days leading to our state ACFW Fall Conference. She had a book to pitch as did I and we encouraged each other each day as we had also committed to praying at noon for one another. GOD IS SO SO GOOD - we were both asked for our work for further examination by agents and editors - PRAISE THE LORD.

She gave this to me at our state conference and at the time we discussed me publishing it on my blog she had no idea of another critical STEP to yet another STONE she'd be taking in her life.
The day after our state conference Karlene got news her mother had just been diagnosed with stage four cervical cancer - PLEASE BE IN PRAYER FOR KARLENE AND HER MOTHER! 
Thank you - 

I've asked Karlene's permission to post her "letter to me" on this blog - it may be a source of encouragement to others as it has been to me.

 Allow me to present ~

 Stepping Stones by~

Karlene Jacobsen~       


 ACFW Great Lakes Chapter (Michigan)  


       As I’ve prayed for the conference, you, (Joy)  and each member of the GLC, I thought about the opposition everyone faces. I find it as no coincidence that many are facing health, family, or financial trials. AND this week it seems to be at its worst with you given that pain you’ve been in. 

     While considering these struggles, two words came up: Stepping Stones. I’ve pondered those words. Jesus is the Chief Cornerstone. The Israelite leaders were to choose 12 stones from the Jordan and carry them out of the river when they crossed into Canaan. Stones were either used as a memorial to what God had done, or to punish sin.  

Here’s what my take is: the Jordan represents opposition. It was at flood stage when the Israelites crossed. The priests were directed to step into the river, AND THEN God pushed the waters back for the nation to cross. For me, this means we are to (at times) take a step into that thing we think will overwhelm us and send us sputtering for air—and perhaps drown us—before we see God’s provision. BUT AS WE DO, He’ll make a way for our crossing into the promise. We are to take those stones to be memorials concerning God’s faithfulness. Those stones might (to me) look like certain devastation financially√† but God provided; health disaster√†but God came through; discouragement√†but God sent His word …  
See where I’m going?  
We should NEVER forget the struggle (those are the stones). Those stones are (if put in proper perspective) to remind us of God’s faithfulness. They’re set in our lives so we can tell those who come after us of God’s wondrous love, mercy, and steadfast provision in our lives. That when the enemy comes to destroy us, we called unto God and He came to our rescue. Whatever that rescue looks like to each of us is God-designed, specifically for our personality and purpose.  
These stones might not bleed into our stories, BUT THEY ARE PART of our story—who we are, how compassion, passion, and love seep into every letter, every word, every chapter, between every cover of our stories. 
These stones then become stepping stones, aiding our climb up into God’s arms, so we can rest our cheek against His chest and listen to His heartbeat. 

Don't think this hasn't been running through my mind many times since the conference, Karls. For every time God has used it to remind me of HIS FAITHFULNESS - I should be sending you thank you notes. ')

I appreciate the time it took for you to write this to me!


Unknown said...

Aw, thanks Joy. Funny how my post on The Barn Door, today runs similar veins.

Love you.

Rita Garcia said...

Heartfelt and powerful! "These stones then become stepping stones, aiding our climb up into God’s arms, so we can rest our cheek against His chest and listen to His heartbeat." Amen! This devotional really resonated with me today! Thank you!!

journeystojoy.net said...

I THANK YOU for the "Letter" to me that resulted in this article. May God richly bless and keep you and I am praying for your mother and you as you encourage her.

Thank you for stopping by, dear friend. I am so glad you've been blessed by this "letter" as I was.
Praying for you.