Dianne Barker, Topics: Marriage * Parenting * Living in joy *

Dianne Barker, CAN Secretary Topics: Marriage * Parenting * Living in joy *

Done… Now What? 

Done. That’s what I told the Lord, repeating it many times during a long drive, alone except for him.

I’m a big dreamer, and I’ve spent my life pursuing dreams. That’s not a bad thing. Other people call this goal setting. I call it pursuing dreams because that’s the way I’ve lived it—chasing dreams the Lord put in my heart.

I did a pretty good job of living in the moment—with plans always simmering. Then I seemed to reach the end of the path. No clear direction to move ahead. So I got honest with the Lord.

I’m done! Done trying to arrange circumstances. Done trying to figure how to use my gifts to bring you glory. My life is yours. If you don’t tell me what to do, I’m done.

I wasn’t quitting on God…just letting him know if nothing else comes, I’ll continue living in the moment, not worrying about the future, content and grateful for my wonderfully blessed life today.

Maybe he accepted that as a fresh surrender. I’m still reeling from what happened next—unexpected opportunities and exciting possibilities, all bearing his fingerprint.

My computer Thesaurus gives these synonyms for surrender: relinquish, give-up, hand over, part with, forfeit, concede.

Many years have passed since I first learned God requires total surrender. Andrew Murray writes in Absolute Surrender, “The condition for obtaining God’s full blessing is absolute surrender to Him…Give yourselves up absolutely to the will of God…what can God do to fill a vessel absolutely surrendered to Him?…God has prepared unheard-of-things, blessings much more wonderful than you can imagine, more mighty than you can conceive.”

These words are embedded in my heart. “’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 hope and a future’” (Jeremiah 29:11).

I’m done! Lord, your plans are better than mine. You lead. I’ll follow.

Dianne Barker is a speaker, radio host, and author of 11 books, including the best-selling Twice Pardoned and award-winning I Don’t Chase the Garbage Truck Down the Street in My Bathrobe Anymore! Organizing for the Maximum Life. She’s secretary of Christian Authors Network and a member of Advanced Writers and Speakers Association and Christian Women in Media Association. Visit www.diannebarker.com.

 

 

 

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DianneBarkerDianne Barker http://www.diannebarker.com here, wondering…have you wrestled the dream-killer?

Weariness and its family—exhaustion, fatigue, disillusionment—are experts at destroying dreams. Their persuasive whispers can talk us out of doing what we believe God called us to do. Authors battle weariness on many fronts.  Read More →

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“Manners are the beginning of integrity.”

The first time I read that quote I thought how simple yet profound.  I pondered for a moment how simple etiquette reveals immediately whether or or not we courteous, considerate and grateful. And, when it is present it refreshes everyone who happens to encounter it.

As speakers, we are often the ultimate focal point of someone’s event.  Therefore we are lavished with praise, gifts and our every need is attempted to met.  In return, what are we giving beside a great talk?

Having been both a Women’s Ministry Leader and still a speaker I have sat on both sides of the table. Therefore, I’d like to share from a Hostess’s point of view for a moment.  For example, I remember…

Observing one speaker’s table manners and how it revealed her lack of patience.  She immediately reached across the table for the sweetener and in an irritable manner called the waitress because she hadn’t gotten her 2nd cup of coffee quickly enough

Note: Your hostess wants you to model what they want the audience to become.

On the other hand another speaker stated “Please,” upon her every request and “Thank You” at every appropriate opportunity. Note: A hostess desires to be respected as a person and leader.

One quite famous speaker revealed her gratitude for the opportunity to speak by giving more in her gift to us than the honorarium we were able to afford to give her.   Note: Prepare to always have a gift to say thank you to your host church and something special also for the one who might host you personally.

These examples helped set the bar for me as an up and coming speaker.

As Christian speakers we can re-ignite the flame of  good manners by modeling them whether its daily among family and friends or when we are called to speak at a humble or highly attended event.

Respectfully submitted,

Doreen Hanna

 

 

 

 

 

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Author, Ava Pennington

Good morning from Ava Pennington, CAN Secretary, in sunny Florida…

The week between Christmas and New Year is a time between times. The build up to Christmas is over. The new year has yet to begin. Anticipation gives way to fatigue. The Christmas decorations seem to have outlasted their welcome, but I’m not ready to take them down yet. And as much as I love Christmas hymns and carols, they seem anticlimactic.

But one Christmas hymn in particular speaks to the writer in me this week.

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Aloha from Karen

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It’s already Thanksgiving Day. I am thankful today for family (especially my husband who continues to battle breast cancer) and many friends. My family keeps growing-five children and now eight grandchildren.

But I also want to express thanks babout books, including thanks for past rejections and current contracts and for books in general. I’m an avid reader and books opened my mind to many possibilities.

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