The Confessions of a Soul-Winner

“Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.” – Matthew 28:19.

Key word: Go. One simple two-letter verb that weighs so heavily on our hearts. Go means to move from one place to another. No matter what physical move you are taking, you will always make a spiritual move first. A move to trust and not be afraid, a move out of your comfort zone and into the Lord’s will, a move that will not only change your life, but will impact the lives around you. Just one move can make a difference in the world around you.

Now, don’t get me wrong, it is hard to go. It’s hard to move out of your comfort zone and do what the Lord has laid on your heart. It’s hard to be the only one in your school attending your P7 meeting. It’s hard to ask someone to church in fear of being rejected. It’s hard to start a campus ministry while you already have a full course load on top of a job. Going is hard, but we have to remember that the alternative is much harder.

Watching people in this world commit suicide because they have no hope left is hard. Watching people be so far into depression that they see no light is hard. Watching people fill their lives with drugs and alcohol to numb the pain or just make themselves feel a little bit better is hard. Seeing people everyday make themselves into something they are not just to fit in because they can’t find their own identity is hard. Watching people give themselves in any part of their lives just to feel accepted is hard. Watching people hurting and not being able to find peace should be harder for you than stepping out of your comfort zone.

We have the answer. We have the key. We have this beautiful truth that can save these people, these souls. It has to be harder for us to keep this truth to ourselves than to go and teach people about the one true living Savior. This world needs a Savior. This world needs a light. This world needs YOU. There is a responsibility attached to this truth you hold. Don’t keep this truth to yourself, but go and teach all people, all nations, baptizing them in the name of Jesus Christ. Go be a light in this world of darkness. God has called you and souls are waiting for you. Go.

about sarah

Sarah Barnhill, 21, is from Texas and is the middle sibling out of three girls in the Barnhill family. She recently graduated from Stephen F. Austin State University with her Bachelor’s degree. Her favorite snack happens to be Cheddar Jalapeno Cheetos!

Respect The President

The millennial generation (which I am apart of) was raised by helicopter parents. This means that our parents were very hands on and protective. In many ways, that was a good thing! It helped us to develop a sense of security. It gave us confidence and a belief that we could do anything we set our minds to. But the one lesson it did not teach us, was how to lose and better yet- how to lose with grace.

We were awarded trophies just for trying. We were told that we would get an ice cream cone whether or not we won the game; We would be delighted in irregardless of our success or failure. (There was that safety we desperately needed.) However, somewhere in the midst of being sheltered from a cruel world, we forgot how to live in it. We forgot that sometimes we do not win. Sometimes we do not get the job we applied for. Sometimes the project we spent hours and days and months on, does not succeed. And sometimes the candidate we voted for, does not win the election.

So we lose and it is a shock to our system. Instead of being able to accept that something did not go our way, we begin to convince ourselves that we do not have to accept the outcome. Hence rioting in the streets, setting limos on fire and throwing stones through Starbucks windows. These are literally grown-up temper tantrums that we see being displayed by individuals which have drank the kool-aid. What does the Bible say about accepting outcomes or people that we do not approve of? Let us have a look.

Matthew 5:44 basically tells us that even if the individual in question is our worst enemy, we are to pray for them and even love them! And when it comes to leadership on a national level, the Bible tells us in Romans 13 that we are to submit to governing authorities. God is in control of who resides as President of the United States. If a man is in office, no matter how much we agree or disagree with him, he is in the will of God for this season. So we must learn to tastefully disagree while also being respectful of his position.

What do we gain by teaching our future children that when we disapprove of something, the answer is to destruct property, shout profanities and make a spectacle in the streets? Once again, the Bible directs us in how to handle disagreements and conflict. We would be wise to have a refresher…

  • Ephesians 4:31-32 – Put away bitterness and slander. Be kind and forgiving!
  • Proverbs 15:1 – Have a soft answer to conflict and do not use harsh words.
  • Ephesians 4:26 – Be angry but DO NOT sin in your actions or thoughts!
  • James 1:19-21 – Be slow to speak and slow to anger. Instead, exercise meekness.
  • Hebrews 12:14-15 – Strive to have peace with EVERYONE.

So if you are upset, be upset the right way. If you want change, be the change. There is a right and a wrong way to express oneself. Here is to hoping that over the next four years we can spend less time fighting and more time praying a blessing over our country and those that are working for its future prosperity.

For a full list of scriptures addressing how to deal with conflict, click here. What are some ways God has dealt with you when you have had to resolve conflict amongst your relations? We’d love to hear your thoughts, so share them with us today by clicking the email icon below.

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shenae-blogger

Shenae Andrus, 28, is the wife of Pastor Joel Andrus and the dog-mom of Mr. Behr Andrus. They all three live in Milford, DE and act as Co-Pastors of Lighthouse Christian Center, as well as Youth President of the NJ/DE Youth Department of UPCI General Youth Ministries. She is obsessed with calligraphy, music, Starbucks Chai-Tea Lattes, shopping and global travel.

Undeservingly Beautiful

“I don’t deserve it.”

Have you ever said these words before? Have you ever felt like you didn’t deserve the good things in your life, the people that love you, the calling placed on your life, or God’s mercy and grace? Have you ever felt like you didn’t deserve the life you live? If you answered yes to any of these questions: You are not alone.

We as humans see our weaknesses above everything else. We see our faults, our fears, our shame, and our brokenness. Sometimes we focus on the wrong in us so much that we forget Who made us right. Romans 4:25 says, “He was handed over to die because of our sins, and he was raised to life to make us right with God.” Jesus Christ did not die so we could live in fear and shame because of who we are. He was crucified on the cross to give us hope of a new life and joy in every season. The Bible plainly tells us that we are fearfully and wonderfully made in the image of our Lord, yet as humans we still see that we are not enough. We feel like because of our past, our faults, our fears, we cannot be loved or cherished the way we are meant to be. We feel like our brokenness hinders us from living a life full of joy, hope, and love. A life of enjoying the amazing things that God has blessed us with: a great family, a spouse that loves us, an anointed and growing ministry. We feel like because of our brokenness, we do not deserve the beautiful things in life.

Yet, we forget what makes the amazing things in life so beautiful: We don’t deserve them.

We don’t deserve God’s mercy and grace. We don’t deserve to live a life full of peace and joy. We don’t deserve to be used by God. Humans don’t deserve all of the blessings the Lord has given them. If we deserved what Jesus has blessed us with, we would not live a life full of thankfulness and faith. We would not be grateful or give all of the glory to God. That is why we must live life as Romans 5:2 explains: “Because of our faith, Christ has brought us into this place of undeserved privilege where we now stand, and we confidently and joyfully look forward to sharing God’s glory.”

Live life not thinking about what you don’t deserve, but focus on what Jesus wants you to have. He wants you to have a life full of love, days full of joy, and a mind full of peace. He wants to anoint you, use you, and show His strength through your weakness. He wants you to focus on Him and His plan, not what you actually deserve. Enjoy the blessings God has given you, let go of the past, forget perfection, and live an undeservingly beautiful life.

about sarah

Sarah Barnhill, 21, is from Texas and is the middle sibling out of three girls in the Barnhill family. She recently graduated from Stephen F. Austin State University with her Bachelor’s degree. Her favorite snack happens to be Cheddar Jalapeno Cheetos!

New Year, New You

New Year resolutions usually look the same for most people: lose weight, start exercising and eating right. This is a list for the physical – we ladies want to be healthy and maintain our youthful figures, right? But what if we applied these resolutions to our spiritual bodies as well?

Lose WeightHebrews 12:1 says to lay aside every weight that easily hinders our Christian walk and entangles us in sin. Maybe it is something as simple as a lack of self control over shopping or social media. Maybe it is a little heavier, like a relationship that keeps tripping you up. These weights are pounds that you need to shed! Feel lighter this year and start to lose those burdens that are keeping you from feeling light and free to run the Christian race.

Exercise – Start building up those spiritual muscles and exercising your faith. (Jude 1:20) The only way you get stronger is to start working out. If you want more faith, if you want to be used in the gifts of the spirit and if you want to have powerful moments with God, it starts small. Start lifting 5 pound weights at first (pray for 5 minutes a day) and eventually you’ll start taking getting stronger. Build up your courage to invite a co-worker to church and eventually you’ll be handing out church cards to everyone you come in contact with! During your prayer time, as God to give you opportunities to exercise your most holy faith on a daily basis.

Eat Right – Time to cut out the junk food and start feeding your spiritual body right. Quite watching, listening to and eating junk food. (Psalm 101:3) No more cheat days filled with sugar, processed foods and preservatives. It’s time to cut out the secular music that fills your mind with inappropriate imagery. It’s time to stop watching the movies that takes your thoughts to places they should avoid. Start eating the WORD. King David said in Psalm 119:11 that he hid God’s Word in his heart to avoid sinning. You are what you eat!

May your bodies AND souls be healthy this New Year! What are some areas you’ve decided to “whip into shape” this year for your heart, mind and soul? Share with us at mail@apostolicgirl.com – we’d love to hear from you!

shenae blogger.jpg

Shenae Andrus, 28, is the wife of Pastor Joel Andrus and the dog-mom of Mr. Behr Andrus. They all three live in Milford, DE and act as Co-Pastors of Lighthouse Christian Center, as well as Youth President of the NJ/DE Youth Department of UPCI General Youth Ministries. She is obsessed with calligraphy, music, Starbucks Chai-Tea Lattes, shopping and global travel.

Mom to Mom: The Miracle of Giving

The first christmas was so special because it was all about giving. The Savior came to give his all. From that gift miracles were born. Things happened beyond the norm because of the power of giving unselfishly.

Acts 20:35 (KJV)

I have shewed you all things, how that so labouring ye ought to support the weak, and to remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he said, It is more blessed to give than to receive.

When was the last time we asked our kids what they wanted to give for Christmas instead of what they wanted to receive?

As a child, my Mom demonstrated sacrificial giving living in our lives. I remember  observing her give her last dollar in the offering and God providing a need the next day.

When my children were young, we had a missionary encouraging our church to give sacrificially. My girls gave all their money to missions that they had been saving for barbie dolls. We lived in the back of our small church and were pastoring with limited resources. After the service I decided I was going to purchase my daughters those dolls, no matter what. But when we went to my husband’s office that following Sunday, there on his desk were Toys-R-Us gift certificates for just the right amount. The Lord spoke to me in that moment and said, “When they give to me, you don’t bless them, I do.”

My girls experienced a miracle that day, and I learned a valuable lesson. If I had purchased those barbies, or if they had not given to God and bought the barbies as planned, all they would have had was a barbie that one day would be a memory. Instead, they gave to a soul that one day they will meet in heaven, and experienced a miracle that only comes from giving. I almost unknowingly robbed them of that.

When we bless ourselves, it always comes with strings attached: credit card debt and the void created by materialism, but when God blesses, there are no strings attached – just blessings.

Miracles are born in a manger, on a cross and in the lives of those who learn to give. Don’t short change your daughter this Christmas by filling a Christmas list of wants, but help them experience the greatest gift, the miracle that only comes from giving.

about-mom

Tammy Huba and her husband, Daniel, pastor in Tallahassee, FL. She is a graduate of Jackson College of Ministries with a Bachelor’s of Music. She is a motivational speaker, accomplished musician and vocalist, but most of all… the mom to three incredible girls.

When All You Have Left… is Trust

It was one of those weeks! A week where: my professor announced a surprise quiz, I got stuck in a traffic jam twice which caused me to be late to class, I did my project wrong, I spent an hour trying to fix a machine at school and ended up leaving frustrated, my screen protector on my phone messed up, my hair hadn’t been washed in eight days, and my computer started slowing down. It was just one of those weeks where nothing seemed to go right, nothing seemed to work out. One of those weeks that leaves you frustrated, questioning whether you are even in God’s will, or questioning if you even have what it takes. One of those weeks where you are juggling so much that dropping things is just inevitable.

Most of the time on one of those weeks I just brush it off, pray, read my Bible, get a good night’s rest and have peace in knowing that tomorrow will be better. However, on this particular week, I couldn’t move on. I got on my knees and prayed a simple prayer: “God, I feel like everything is falling apart and all I have left is trust.” As soon as these words left my mouth, Proverbs 3:5 came to my mind. “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.”

In that moment, Jesus opened my eyes to see that when all I have left is trust, I have all that I need. Jesus didn’t call us to juggle or balance everything in life. Jesus didn’t call us to keep it all together and find strength within ourselves. Jesus didn’t call us to be self sufficient and independent. Jesus called us to trust in His ways, trust in His plans, and lean on Him, not our own understanding. Jesus called us to let His power be made perfect in our weaknesses (2 Corinthians 12:9).

When I depend on myself or focus on my plans, I never have enough. I am constantly unsuccessfully balancing or feeling like a failure during everyday tasks. But when all I have to depend on is my trust in the Lord, when I acknowledge Him in all that I do, “…He will direct my paths (Proverbs 3:6).”

So if you feel like you are not measuring up to be the perfect mom, student, employee, or woman of God, I encourage you to throw away that unrealistic yardstick. Let go of the view of how perfect your life should be. Realize that if all you have is trust, you have all that you need and you have a God that is able to do far more than what you ask or think (Ephesians 3:20).

about sarah

Sarah, 21, is from Texas and is the middle sibling out of three girls in the Barnhill family. She recently graduated from Stephen F. Austin State University with her Bachelor’s degree. Her favorite snack happens to be Cheddar Jalapeno Cheetos!

Get to Where He Is

Growing up in the ministry, I have seen many cases of struggle. Different individuals, with different situations, with different issues.

It’s a part of life. You don’t make it through without a few bumps (or catastrophic jagged mountains) in the road. Some things are easy to overcome and conquer along the journey. Other things are a continuous climb, finding it hard to breath, encountering injuries along the way, and wondering if you’ll ever feel peace again.

I have seen people who overcome their struggles, while others continue fighting until this day. What’s the difference? How does one defeat depression, low self-esteem, negativity, bad attitudes, and tormenting thoughts?

I love to research random events in history. Inspiring events that I don’t know much about. One in particular that has fallen into my radar is the story of the “Miracle in the Andes”.

In 1972, a charter plane carrying 45 passengers of a rugby team with their friends and family crashed onto the Andes Mountains. 18 died instantly and due to sickness, injuries, the unbearable cold, and an avalanche, the 27 left slowly dwindled down to 16. As I studied, I was stricken with sadness learning of all they had to encounter. They melted snow for water, essentially ate their luggage and the cushion of plane seats, eventually turned to cannibalism of the dead passengers, and had to bare the news received from the radio announcing that the search party for them had been cancelled.

plane-crash

Nando Parrado and Roberto Canessa, two men that survived, knew that they all were going to die if they stayed where they were at. Several planes had already passed over, but they were well hid by the snow and they didn’t have enough resources to create something to catch attention from the sky’s view. After about 60 days since the plane crash, Parrado and Canessa headed out into the wilderness alone. Long story short, they walked and battled the harsh conditions for 10 days to find any kind of civilization. Well, they did. A small village where the residents came to the rescue. After caring for Parrado and Canessa, helicopters were sent out on the next clear day to save the other passengers.

Pretty inspiring story, huh? I hope you can see the connection I’m making here. These individuals were caught in the most unimaginable dire circumstances. They knew to be saved, they couldn’t stay another day in the same predicament. They were desperate and knew change was the only way not to die.

God has liberty, victory, and freedom just waiting for you! He’s on the other side of the mountain, just across the river after a 10 day journey. It wasn’t easy for Parrado and Canessa to get there, but they sure didn’t complain once they did. Whatever you’re struggling with and no matter how long you’ve been struggling with it-even if it’s been more than 60 days!; you can achieve that liberation you so desperately want. IF you’re desperate enough. Get to where God is. MOVE. Refuse to stay another day in your misery and despair. Tell your mind to get up and go to where joy and peace can be found. It’s not in a physical building, but a state of mind.

about blogger

Charity Huba is a 23 year old Floridian who can’t get enough sunshine and days at the beach. She leads in music and the youth group she grew up in. She works for the government in the Division of Elections. She’s in love with quality time with her loved ones, musicals, and moon-lit nights.