Getting Hitched: Part III

contributed by Breezy Peterson

As we sit here looking back on Valentines Day weekend, we can think of no better way to kiss that saccharine holiday goodbye than with a good dose of God-centered, Christ-honoring love. If you missed Part I or Part II of our series on Savanna Lewis (the gorgeous gal behind Sew Savanna), you can read through them first. Or you can simply enjoy this post all on its own.

We thought we would be bringing this series to a close with Part III, but there’s just so much more to this story we want to share with you. Warm up a mug of hot chocolate and settle in for the newest installment of the “Getting Hitched” series. We know you’ll love it!

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Part III: Match Point

The beach has always been one of Savanna’s favorite places. Over the summer of 2015, during a family vacation on the coast, Seth added one more reason for his future bride to love the sand and surf.

“On the last night we were there,” Savanna said, “Seth told me he wanted to take me out to a nice restaurant. After dinner, we took a walk on the beach.”

What started out as a romantic stroll on the sand turned into a soaking wet scene as a sudden downpour caught the two of them out in the open. They ran to a pier to take shelter from the storm. “We waited for the rain to let up, but it never did,” she said.

“We were already wet, so we walked out and the ocean tide was washing up to our toes. He hugged me tightly and told me some very sweet things.” Savanna said she’d leave out the mushiness for you, dear reader.

“And then he got down on one knee and asked me to marry him.”

After making sure he was serious, Savanna accepted and “cried like a baby for a solid hour,” she said.

“That was the most perfect engagement ever.”

Seth’s decision to propose at Savanna’s favorite place comes as no surprise. His tender heart for his bride shines through his choices as a young man. In addition to regular prayer, Seth has been reading through a devotional series for young couples getting married.

“He is such a strong Christian and so gentle,” Savanna said. “Throughout our relationship we have prayed together and I feel like that is the reason we have stayed together so long and had such a wonderful relationship.”

The couple divides their time between classes at Central Virginia Community College, where Seth is studying architectural engineering and Savanna is finishing up her AA in Business Management, and work. Taking a few classes together helps them to stay connected, but not everything has been coming up roses for the young couple.

“The greatest challenge in our journey since we’ve gotten engaged is the friends we have lost from it,” Savanna said. “Some friends you find are forever, some are temporary.” The choice to get married young has caused a few grumbles in their social circles, but ultimately, has not deterred them.

“When you know you’re with the one, you know. And honestly, there is no point in waiting if [getting married] is what you both want,” Savanna said.

“The greatest blessing is that we’ve had God on our side through it all. Having Him on our side has made us feel bulletproof. We haven’t felt hopeless and we give all the credit to Him.”

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We can’t bear to cut this story short! There’s so much more we want to share with you that we have yet to put into words. We’ll be back later this week with more from Savanna as we finish up this series.

 

 

 

 

Purpose | Post 3 | The Final Post

Thanks for joining me for the final post in my Purpose series. The last benefit of purpose-driven living, according to Warren, is:

5. Knowing your purpose prepares you for eternity.

Eternity…do you know how long that it? It’s FOREVER. We spend so much time worrying about the now and tomorrow…and getting involved with as much as we can and accomplishing as many things as possible. We want to leave an imprint in this world…but most of the time, the focus of that imprint is in the wrong place. We want to be remembered for our time here and for the things that we did here, after we are gone…but really, we should be preparing NOW for LATER. Rick Warren states in his book What On Earth Am I Here For? that “living to create an earthly legacy is a shortsighted goal. A wiser use of time is to build an eternal legacy. You weren’t put on earth to be remembered. You were put here to prepare for eternity.”

Wow. Read that again…”You weren’t put on earth to be remembered. You were put here to prepare for eternity.” I remember having a conversation with Mrs. Courtney at this year’s ModFem retreat about this very subject. I have never really thought about it the way that she described. She told me that we were made for eternity. Our bodies here on earth are just dust, and will age and fade away, but our spirits were made for so much more that anything this world can offer. We were made to last forever! I don’t know about you, but the things and ways of this world make that difficult for me to grasp. I have often thought of what things would be like here after I leave this world—will I be missed? Will my family be ready to move on without me? Will my kids have a firm foundation to build upon without me here? I can rest my thoughts because I know that it is all in God’s hands. He will take care of my children…because they are his children too! We ALL are his children, and he wants so much more for us that just the things of this pathetic world. He has gone to prepare a place for us, and place far more amazing than anything we could ever imagine. And I know that if I can live a life of purpose, the purpose that He has intended for me, that I will be able to join Him in that amazing place called heaven.

How do we get ready for that day?
Warren says that “one day you will stand before God, and He will do  an audit of your life, a final exam, before you enter eternity. The Bible says, “Remember, each of us will stand personally before the judgement seat of God….Yes, each of us will have to give a personal account to God.” (Romans 14:10b, 12 NLT) Fortunately, God wants us to pass this test, so he has given us the questions in advance. From the Bible we can surmise that God will ask us two crucial questions: 

1. What did you do with my Son, Jesus Christ? The only thing that will matter is, did you accept what Jesus did for you and did you learn to love and trust him? Jesus said, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (John 14:6 NIV)

2. What did you do with what I gave you?  What did you do with your life–all the gifts, talents, opportunities, energy, relationships, and resources God gave you? Did you spend them on yourself, or did you use them for the purposes God made you for?” 

There now, you know the questions for your final exam…how you choose to live your life affects how you will answer those questions once your judgement day comes. Judgement day sounds kinda harsh, doesn’t it? Even though that pretty much sums up what it will be, you can think of it as your Orientation Day, if you will. You know, like the day you spend at a new school or college, looking around, getting to see how things will be? Well, your judgement day is kinda like that, except you will be held accountable for the way you lived on earth. The only way you can move on and “get in” to those pearly gates is if you have earned it. No top college will accept a high school drop out…you have to earn your place to get into the best of the best.

So, ask yourself, do you know your purpose? If so, live toward the goals of fulfilling that purpose so that you can spend eternity with our Savior! If you do not know what your purpose is or have feelings of uncertainty, contact me. I would love to chat with you or direct you to someone who can help meet your needs. But I will tell you this, your purpose is always FOR GOD. If your life isn’t being lived in a manner that would please God, then you are on the wrong path.

Grace and Peace to you!
Megan

The Purpose series has utilized the text by Rick Warren, What On Earth Am I Here For? (also known as The Purpose Driven Life). If you have not read this book, I strongly encourage you to get a copy. It is so relevant to our lives and where we stand…get a physical copy so that you can make notes and underline all of the nuggets of truth between those covers!

Purpose | Post 1

What are you here for? What am I here for? Do we have a purpose? Of course, we do!! I know that as a teenager, that purpose can be vague at times, and even unimaginable. We often feel insignificant in this world full of people with so many beliefs, ideas, and opinions.

I’ve been reading What On Earth Am I Here For? (the revised version of The Purpose Driven Life) by Rick Warren. It’s such a great read if you can snag a copy…yes, get it in print so you can make notes and underline all the good nuggets within those pages:) Rick discusses 5 great benefits to living a purpose-driven life.

1. Knowing your purpose gives meaning to your life.

2. Knowing your purpose simplifies your life.

3. Knowing your purpose focuses your life.

4. Knowing your purpose motivates your life.

5. Knowing your purpose prepares you for eternity.

I won’t discuss them all in this post, but I do want to cover the first 2. We all live our lives for something, for some it’s more apparent than others. According  to Mark, “we were made to have meaning…when life has meaning, you can bear almost anything; without it, nothing is bearable.” Have you ever set a goal? And working toward that goal gave you a drive, right? You have your eyes set on the prize and you just won’t stop til you’ve crossed the finish line.

“Without God, life has no purpose, and without purpose, life has no meaning. Without meaning, life has no significance or hope.” -Rick Warren

Hope is crucial for us all…without hope, there is no moving on, looking up, or pressing forward. It is essential. I’m sure we have all felt hopeless at some time or another. In Christ, there is no hopelessness. Trust in him and know that he put you here for a purpose much greater than anything on this earth. Warren states “wonderful changes are going to happen in your life as you begin to live it on purpose.”

One of my favorite passages of scripture comes from Jeremiah 29:11. “”For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.”” What a great thought…

Knowing your purpose simplifies your life. When you know what your purpose is, it affects all other aspects/decisions/choices in your life. You aren’t going to participate in things that are meaningless to you or pointless toward your purpose. Would an Olympic swimmer spend a few hours each day training on the tennis court? Doubtful. Would a wedding planner choose to order roses despite the fact that their client requested daisies? Of course not! We will live our lives toward our purpose…our focus should be on that and not on the numerous distractions in this world.

Warren said something that I absolutely loved, so simple yet so overlooked sometimes. “It is impossible to do everything people want you to do. You have just enough time to do God’s will. If you can’t get it all done, it means that you’re trying to do more than God intended for you to do (or possibly, that you’re watching too much television).” When you live for your purpose (God’s purpose for you), the rest falls into place. So simple. Simpler lifestyle…simpler schedule…simpler everything. Room to breathe. Sigh. I’m feeling better already!

I don’t know about you, but my schedule is pretty intense sometimes. I get burnt out, stressed, etc. I have to remind myself to “stop and smell the roses.”

My challenge for us is to sit down and think about what the driving force of your life is right now. Now ask yourself, what do I want it to be?

Some of you may be familiar with this song, but listen and watch anyways. Read the lyrics as he sings…such a great lyric.

Be sure to check back for the next Purpose post…

-Megan

Preparing for Resurrection Sunday

Tomorrow is Easter Sunday for a lot of people, but Resurrection Sunday for me. How about you? Are you celebrating with eggs, candy, and a giant bunny OR are you rejoicing in our risen Savior who was hung on a cross so that we may be forgiven of our many, MANY sins?

I mean, sure, I have kids…we enjoy egg hunts and candy…I personally don’t do Easter bunny photos. But our focus isn’t on those things, it’s on Jesus. I want my kids to know and understand that Jesus loves them so much and that he went to the cross for us. I know that they’re really young and don’t fully understand, but they’re never too young to start learning…

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“According to the laws of legal evidence used in courts of law, there is more evidence for the historical fact of the resurrection of Jesus Christ than for just about any other event in history.” (Harvard Law Professor Dr. Simon Greenleaf)

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“I am the resurrection and the life.  Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this?” (John 11:25-26)

I hope that you do believe that. I know that as a teenager, I read/heard/listened to it…but I didn’t fully believe it. I want to put my trust in Jesus, not in the things of this world. I know it may seem like this world is all that matters to you right now, but please listen when I say that it will all fade. And you don’t have to die for that to happen…I am 26 now, and SO MUCH has faded.

Trust in Jesus, for when all else fails, he will be there. This weekend should be about rejoicing, for our Savior lives! HE LIVES! And he loves you, despite all of your flaws. He loves me even when I forget to do what is right. Where else will you find a love like that? This world will reject you when you mess up, Jesus comes with open arms.

“If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” (Romans 10:9)

Happy Resurrection weekend, friends! I love you, and Jesus does too!

-Megan