Sunday, April 19, 2015

when I fall down

Yesterday was a day full of unplanned events.

I woke up believing I had my day all planned ...little did I know...

My plans:
-bike ride
-hair cut at noon
-attend last summer's Crossroads worship intern's senior recital
-leading our amazing worship/baptism services

His plans (reality):
-bike ride & breakfast 1/2 way through
-father perhaps close to passing do to severely dehydration from bacterial illness 
-crash 3 minutes away from being back to the car for no reason
-in ER for 2 1/2 hours
-broken wrist & imprint of chain-link fence on my forehead

the results of THE FALL
my precious dad

Decision to believe in God's sovereignty...

Romans 8:28
28 And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.

 Why did God allow this to happen?  In time I may or may not know fully - but, when you are a believer you understand that perhaps your faith becomes the faith YOU make it unless He chooses to test us which causes growth or reveals weakness.

He has already let me experience the following.

-in ER the Physicians Assistant asked me where I worked.  After leaving the room he returned with a chair and sat back down beside me.  He said he would probably cry and he did.  Years ago he was invited to a Crossroads Easter service and attended.  To hear him describe his experience and his wonder at the quality of the service made me cry.  The next year he brought his entire family and was again blown away.  Soon after that, being in Special Forces he served very ugly time in Iraq and Afghanistan and longed to receive something He could show his comrades.  So he requested a copy of that year's Easter service which we NEVER do, but we made an exception in the case of our amazing military serving overseas.  To see him cry as he described receiving that package made me cry again!  

He then kissed my head and left the room.  I may never see him again, but God let me see how our team's work is being used!  Breathtaking confirmation of my calling...

Being unable to attend services forced me to miss my favorite service - baptism, even more disappointing because my son, daughter, son-in-law and husband were all baptizing precious saints, some of which are brand new believers!  SO moving even watching on-line. This morning I gave thanks!

God IS moving for sure!  All areas of Crossroads were represented in baptisms!
my perfect husband Ron
Our son Eric

Our daughter and Son-In-Law Aaron
We don't always know WHY we fall and we don't need to know why... so I dedicate this slower-moving next few weeks to His glory and I will try not to question when I fall down.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

many words spoken

Today there were many words spoken - by me!  Shocking I know.

The average woman speaks 13,000 words each day.  Today I seriously think I may have spoken 50,000!  Meetings began at 7:30 a.m. and ended WITH NO BREAKS BETWEEN at 4:00 p.m. 

One of the meetings I attended today was our staff book study where we continued our study of the book, Simplify.

In today's chapter we looked at the idea of being a Builder or a Buster - with our attitudes, our words etc.  So I wondered how my words affected people today?

Some were words about the future of Crossroads, some were words about our worship service details, about future services, about future leaders and all the details between.  Were they pleasing to the Lord?

I believe today I got to participate in building.  And I couldn't be more excited!  I'm certainly not claiming perfection in the execution of every single word spoken, but my heart was hopefully a reflection of God's heart.

Oh how I wish every time I opened my mouth my words were God words - being used to build His kingdom, never being used to defeat or discourage.

As Jocelyn lead our study today, she read how Willow Creek encourages their staff to spend 15 minutes praying for the Lord's guidance over their day before they step foot in their building.   I am going to try very hard to commit to this practice each day. 

Pastor Dave has been sharing his vision for Crossroads to be the catalyst for change in our community - I'm guessing a commitment like this from our entire congregation before entering their workplace could help make that kind of change very possible.

Matthew 19:26 But Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”

Will you consider joining me in this commitment - to first of all honor the Lord with our words and actions each day - but to then be used as an agent of His change in our community?  Let's begin tomorrow!

Monday, April 13, 2015

my day off

Yesterday afternoon included my second bike trail ride in so many days and surprisingly I don't feel too badly!  It's not called a ladies cruiser bike for nothing - we chatted happily with no pressure at all to finish at a certain time!  (meanwhile our husbands kept lapping us trying to hit some ridiculous target amount of miles for the day!)
Kimberly Fleeson and me on our Townie's
Later yesterday, we got our grandson to keep a couple of nights while his parents are vacationing.  So we have been outside as much as possible enjoying the magnificent weather.

I came across these seed pods and I was completely blown away by the exquisite detail God the creator took the time to use with this small plant branch.  They were almost spider-web-ish.
 Every time I'm with my grandson I love him more and tonight I let him lay on my bed a few minutes before transferring him to his own bed just to settle him down.

He came to bed with a little - very old matchbox truck in his hand, and I watched in wonder as he held that little truck  I thought I was watching his father.  This car had been our son Eric's, and it was as if it was 25 years ago.

This was the perfect ending to my day off!  precious fleeting time...God is so good.

weekend report

It's so hard to believe that we're already a week past Easter.  It was great to see so many new faces at Crossroads this weekend - I've been praying the Lord gives us opportunities to invest in their lives for years to come!

Pastor Dave began a new series this weekend called Unstoppable, and it was a great beginning to the study in Colossians.  Here's the link to the promo!

Our Setlist:

Oceans (Where Feet May Fall)
Your Name
From The Inside Out

Unstoppable Video

Message:  Unstoppable Pt. 2: A Study of Colossians

Exit Song:  Relentless

To watch our services go to

To see what other ministries used in their services go to

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

my today

As I sit here in my bed ready to sleep, I'm physically exhausted but spiritually invigorated!

A young lady came to know the Lord tonight at Crossroads.  Her life changed forever, in fact for eternity, tonight!  This is why we even HAVE Crossroads - to be there for the lost - to point them to the Savior!

Another lady who came to Crossroads for the first time this past weekend, and talked for a long time with our pastors when she came back for our dessert fellowship tonight.  We hosted this for people who made decisions for the Lord Easter weekend or wanted to know more about the church.

She had NO understanding whatsoever about accepting the Lord or any of the spiritual next steps to grow closer to Him.  It was so surprising that she had been in church yet had no understanding about a personal relationship with the Savior.

I got to show a new couple around the church and as we walked they explained that their children are in High School - but, one night in the middle of the night they got a call from Georgia from a sister to come get her son.  I don't know what the circumstances were, but they got in their car and drove straight there through the night to rescue their little nephew.  Great people!

Earlier today we worked on details for the Global Leadership Summit that will simulcast into Crossroads this summer.  Soon our auditorium will be filled as many of the top local Government officials and leaders from all aspects of our community gather to be challenged to attend the Summit.  This could change Mansfield...

God has positioned us in a very special place and time here at Crossroads.   Will He use us to be a leader in our community?  Will we get to play a role in bringing unlikely people together?  I can hardly wait to see.

Please pray like never before that the Lord will open our community up to Him - that new relationships will present opportunities for Crossroads to serve even the leaders of North Central Ohio.

Sunday, April 5, 2015

weekend report - Easter

Wow - how did it get to be this time of the year again already?   And now it's over.  Did your Easter services make a difference?

That's what I find myself thinking about this evening.

The preparation was intense, the work was long - did it make a difference?

God promises His words will 'never return to Him void' - God explains that when the rain and snows come to the earth it replenishes the earth.  It's impossible for it not to be used in this way when it falls.   That's exactly what God promises about His Word.

So we worked, and tweaked and prayed and then shared God's message through teaching, and singing and reading His words.   And people came - a lot of them came.

I'm feeling blessed and thankful tonight - and I believe based on the cards people turned in - that lives changed for eternity this weekend.   There is no reason beyond that needed to motivate us to work hard and prepare well and stand back and marvel at how He uses the gifted areas of our lives to present the Gospel to the lost.  It was an amazing weekend!

View from the back of the stage
Darrin the Drummer - so good!

Me and my kids - Eric and Jocelyn ready for Easter!
The brass had a tough one - and they did it!!

Our Setlist:

2 promo videos:  Danny Gokey concert and our next teaching series UNSTOPPABLE

Creation - Crucifixion Video

Man of Sorrows

1st Teaching:  Chaos - Pastor Dave Vance

Nothing But the Blood

2nd Teaching:  Resurrection/Risen One - Pastor Dave Vance


In Christ Alone
Because He Lives
Man of Sorrows

To watch our services go to

To see what other ministries used in their Easter services, go to

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Easter looks like this

As we began to work on Easter, the smallest things caught my attention. And they didn't look much like Easter in the beginning.

As I worked in the auditorium Monday at Crossroads, other people were in and out, serving those who will attend this weekend simply by using their talents.  I marveled at how valuable each contribution was. This look of Easter was much different than what most people see.
pieces and parts waiting to be formed into something beautiful

I watched one lady quietly spraying the handles of the auditorium doors making sure that no germs or dirty finger prints were anywhere to be seen.   And others will soon join in to help with the endless job of cleaning all the glass windows at Crossroads... 

I watched as the sweeper was carefully aimed beneath each seat, and between the aisles where somewhere close to 2,000 people's feet had walked just days before.  The feet of people gathering to hear the Word of God.

I saw light bulbs replaced, and trash hauled out and programs prepared and new table tents advertising our pastor's next teaching series be placed with great care around Crossroads.

This is what Easter looked like yesterday... and then today it began to take a different shape as rehearsals began and the team encouraged and cheered one another on.

What started out as ideas found on-line, or suggestions tucked away for months in folders began to come alive, as if the Lord Himself breathed life into the process.  All of us believing the careful preparation of this temporary building and the details within - could somehow be used of the Lord to help remove the distractions of disorder - so a new life could be redeemed for Christ.

It was almost too much to take in...

As you come to worship this weekend, picture each hand that touched the places that surround you, and know they did it because we all love you and care desperately about your relationship with the Risen Christ of Easter.

Please join me in praying for all of those who will come this weekend!