A Non-Hallmark Valentines Day Update

Posted on February 14, 2012 by Jeff

Happy Valentines Day.

I’m reminiscing to some of my past valentines days. I remember one when Kristie and I were out to dinner with the kids and they all got sick. Like “sick and puking all over the restaurant – sick”.

Sick.

That one is not easily forgettable, as much as I’d like to forget it.

Today, I’m home alone with a sick four year old. The other kids are off at School. Kristie is in Rochester with her family as her dad Roger is undergoing surgery to remove a cancerous tumor on his kidney. So this Valentines day isn’t very ‘Hallmarkey’.

I’m reminded once again how life and marriage isn’t always chocolate and roses. BUT, I wouldn’t trade a day with my bride Kristie for anything.

We are filled with optimism knowing that Roger is in good hands with the Mayo Clinic surgical team. We are full of faith knowing Roger is in good hands with our God.

I haven’t blogged in a while, for a few reasons, but since I’m at it today, let me give a little update on some stuff.

It’s been just over a year since Kristie and I stepped out in a bit of a faith adventure. We have marveled at the faithfulness of God seeing his hand of direction and provision on our family.

These days I’m involved leading worship at a couple of great local churches most weekends – Cedar Valley Church in Bloomington and Valley Creek Church in Woodbury. I’m involved at Cedar Valley Church a little bit during the week as well, helping in the creative arts department.

Other weekends are spent travelling to churches with Kristie to lead workshops, lead worship or preach. We have enjoyed meeting and ministering with so many great churches in the past year. SO, if you’d like to have Kristie and I help at your church, we’d love to. (Fourthfloor.org for more info on that)

I’m teaching a class at North Central University which I thoroughly enjoy

Kristie, along with her good friend Paula Yarnes, is writing an elementary age girl’s curriculum called ‘Polka Dot Girls’ (polkadotgirls.org)and the response from churches has been great. She also teaches at churches for bible studies, retreats and conferences and is my favorite speaker. She’s really good. (Go to Kristiekerr.com for info on how to book her)

Kristie is also helping with this year’s Bridging the Gap conference – “Free To Be The Change”. The theme this year is all about meeting the needs of the poor, needy, hurting and broken in our communities and around the world. There are some great speakers lined up and Kristie is leading worship and producing all the main session. (freetobeconference.org)

Another thing we’re working on is a marriage conference. Along with our good friends Joe and Jen Anderson, we are presenting the Good Love Marriage Conference – April 27-28 at Cedar Valley Church in Bloomington MN. We’re all really excited for this conference. There will be good, practical, Biblical teaching on marriage as well as time set aside for us to worship together and pray for each other. I’m especially looking forward to those times spent at the altar as we pray for our marriages. (Goodloveconference.org)

This blog is starting to sound like an infomercial.

“BUT THAT’S NOT ALL!! If you sign up for the conference, you’ll get this handy key chain flashlight.”

One of the reasons I haven’t blogged much recently is that my writing time has been focused elsewhere. I’ve been writing a book. I began this process a few years ago, but really dove into it this past year. I’m pleased to say that it’s almost done. The writing is done, now it’s just the proofing, design and printing.

The book is called “Either He’s God, Or He’s Not” and it will be available in the next month or two. I for sure want to have it available at the marriage conference, as well as some other engagements we have in April.

The basic premise of the book is pretty straightforward: IF He is God, the same God we read about in scripture, and we truly believe that ALL of the things said about him are true, then we are compelled to live very differently – We should trust Him more, step out in faith more, be more generous, be less anxious and fearful and we should die to ourselves. Either He’s God or He’s not – There’s not a “maybe” option.

Speaking of trusting God, we are. Kristie and I continue to move forward through doors that God opens for us, knowing He has a plan for us that He’s unfolding. We are also aware of how much He is teaching us in the midst of this season. So we’re not getting too anxious for the future, instead we’re focusing on what God has for us to do and learn now. We don’t want to miss out on any ‘God stuff’ now because we’re looking too far ahead.

That being said, we are excited to see God put passion in our hearts for potential new endeavors. We see Him orchestrating circumstances in really cool, unexpected ways and we are thrilled to be on the adventure.

If you are discouraged today, let your faith rise up knowing that the God of the universe has a plan just for you. Don’t miss out on what God is teaching you and forming in you right now because you’re too focused down the road.

The last verses in Exodus (Exodus 40:34-38) talk about a cloud of God’s glory covering the Tent/Tabernacle of the Israelites as they were in the desert. The people were instructed to follow this pillar of cloud. When it moved, they moved.

Verse 36 says, “In all of the travels of the Israelites, whenever the cloud lifted from above the tabernacle, they would set out; but if the could did not lift, they did not set out – until the day it lifted.”

It was pretty simple for them – “when the cloud moves, you move. When it stays put, you stay put.”

I read those verses this morning and was again reminded that for you and me, it’s also quite simple. When God says, “go” – we go. When God says to stay put, we stay put.

Because of plans and agendas we have for our own lives, it’s easy for us to put qualifiers on this simple instruction such as:

“Yah, but what about this other lucrative opportunity?….”

“But what about my vision for this thing….”

“But what about this next step on the ladder to climb…”

As many Yah Buts as we through at God, the simple truth remains – IF He is God, we follow Him. There’s not a ‘maybe’ option.

The Israelites were enroute to The Promised Land and I’m sure during long stretches when the cloud was not moving, there would have been great temptation to grow impatient and question God’s direction. But it had to be reassuring that no matter where the journey led them, they could look and see the pillar of cloud nearby and now that they were right where God wanted to them to be.

If you are where God wants you, then nothing else matters.