Monday, December 18, 2006

Happy 19th Anniversary!

On the eve of my 19th Anniversary of marriage to Dave, I am so very very grateful for our relationship. Dave really does love me. He demonstrates it all the time. School has been very demanding for me lately. He has not complained about it once. Instead he has picked up some of the responbilities that used to be mine without being asked.

Dave listens to my heart and my thoughts. When he can't take it anymore he gently tells me so. But I'm certain he gives me way more words then many women get. :)

My husband cares deeply about our friendship. He loves for me to be happy!

We both struggle, when we're being selfish, to get to a place where we can put the other one first. Neither one of us feels good for very long about putting ourselves above the other.

One of the things that makes me feel the most secure is his intentional following after our Savior.
There are a few things that drive me crazy! But the truth is that I do many more things that drive him crazy! He is always much more patient with my craziness then I am with his.

I more honored today then I was 19 years ago that Dave took me as his wife. I am exceedingly grateful for the pathway God has given us to walk together! I look forward to taking one step at a time into our future!

I love you, Dave


Friday, December 08, 2006


I had an amazing experience yesterday. I was able to hear the testimony of a woman named Rose who is from Kenya. Rose brought us her story of first hand experience with all the heartache of people suffering from starvation, no clean water and the Aides crisis in Africa.

The area of Kenya she comes from is dealing with all of these problems. Rose has an amazing story. She grew up in a small village. A missionary came to her village. One thing led to another and small group of people began to have church under a tree. She believed the stories of Jesus. As the church grew they had to move to a bigger tree. Over the years as her knowledge and relationship with the Lord grew she was invited to go to another village to learn even more about Jesus so she could come back and teach what she learned. She told us that in her travels from village to village she encountered people with hunger. Many times she had nothing to give them to eat. But she did have a story to tell them. The story of Jesus. Then when she could she would come back to them with food and more stories of Jesus. I wish I could remember all the details of her story so I could share them with you here. But somehow typing the words would never do justice to what her life represents. In addition to the difficulties facing her country she has also faced persecution from some in her community for her faith in Jesus and her rejection of some aspects of her culture. But she continues to faithfully go where God leads and she TRUSTS what God is doing in her life.

Rose exudes a strength I just don't have. When you live every day dependent on God for protection, survival and wisdom it has a way of producing strength and deep faith. It was a blessing to be in her prescence.

I can't remember a time in my life when missions wasn't important to my family. Both the family I was born to and the family I married into. It brought such joy to see what God had done for Rose and is doing for her people through the giving of money to missions and the calling on a missionaries life to go to Kenya. It was like all those mission brochures and pictures of mission trips came to life for me. It felt like such a gift to be able to be with her. It was so exciting to see how God is equipping Rose to go back and be able to serve her people even more effectively. I'm so grateful God brought Rose to the United States so we could hear her story in person. Her story is so important. I was reminded again how amazing and good God is.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Clash of my world and Inner-city Phoneix

As I was listening to a speaker talk about how difficult it is for us to cross over cultural barriers between the world of affluence and the world of poverty these words came to me.

My life is white.
My world is bright.

My days are long.
I no longer have a place to belong.

My culutre is blind.
We wine and we dine.

Really we're dying,
but so far denying.

How will God speak?
Will He let us go on being so weak?

I don't think so.
Now I want to know so.

These thoughts are primitive at best in their demonstration of any skill. But they do reveal the reality I'm facing. I no longer completely identify with the place I come from and still remain in. And yet I do not belong in the world of poverty that I have been introduced to.

My innate sense of drive wants to be impatient with people and start a revolution. And then I feel deep frustration over knowing that in part that response comes from my culture and has nothing but disaster written all over it.

God has had to work very dilligently on my soul to get me to a place where I can even embrace these experiences and thoughts. What will it take to bring me to a place of responding with the mind of Christ rather then the mind of my culture? I really can't allow myself to think about that question for very long. One day at a time is all the Lord is asking of me.

The very best part is that I am also experiencing an inviting sense of hope. I believe and have experienced that the impossible is possible with God.

Dear Lord,

For those of us who have to much, don't want to rely on it but do, please reveal the real condition of our hearts. Help me to trust you for healing. Help me to trust that you are at work. Help me to hold your hand and walk side by side with you. Help me to pray according to your will and not my own. Teach me to be submitted to you above all else. Please don't give up on me. May there be days when the pruning produces a harvest of righteousness for your Name which is above all names.


Sunday, October 29, 2006

My friend Susan

My friend Susan has been dealing with cancer for a year and a half or so. God has the ability to heal her still today. But if he does not her hours here on earth are short. Susan has been a mentor to me. She's one of those rare people who wants to dive right into exploring where you are in your walk with the Lord. She wants to really know how you are.

I have felt sad for a while now about Susan's illness and all that it will mean for those she loves. If God does not heal her and allow her to remain here with us her hours on earth are very short. Today, I am not just sad. I am grieving. While I'm grateful to report I am not experiencing despair because I know where she is going and that God will be faithful to those she leaves behind, I am feeling the pain of loss. I've already lost the ability to call her or visit her. It's no longer reasonable to look forward to a dinner that's just the four of us. I've lost the access to all the lessons she's learned about God's goodness.

Susan was called by God to be a prayer warrior on my behalf. I doubt based on what I've been told she has the ablitity to be involved in that calling any longer. I don't know what to believe about whether she will have the ability to petition God on my behalf once He takes her home. If she cannot, I hope he provides someone else just as faithful as Susan. Most of all I hope I have learned from her example to be faithful in prayer for others.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

One of my best titles: Matt's Mom

Today I have a fourteen year old son. Wow!

I'm in a class this quarter that is wrestling with texts about women in leadership and one of the hardest texts for this room to understand is 1 Timothy 2:15 - Yet she (women) will be saved through childbearing...

Most people in this room are male or women who haven't yet given birth to a child. There are a many many verses in Scripture that even after long periods of study I would be clueless about but this one I think I get at least one perspective on. Nothing puts a woman on her knees faster then endless nights of too little sleep or lonliness from lack of adult interaction. In particular there was the series of two week periods, when Matt was three, that he was certain that I wasn't sure about the meaning of "n" ,"o", no!

I prayed and asked God how to teach Matt and ideas would come and they would work. I prayed and asked God for wisdom about school and we saw God's hand every year. Having a child has been the motivation for wanting a prayer life that actually stuck.

We're proud of our son Matt. He has a tender heart like his Mom. He has a sharp mind like his Dad. He has boundless Matt energy that could only come from God. He is quick with a smile and desires relationship with the body of Christ and our Heavenly Father. What a blessing!

Dear Lord,

Thank you God for transforming parts of my heart to be more like your heart through my relationship with Matt. He has indeed been a part of the working out of my salvation.

Thank you for giving us Matt. May you bless him and keep him. May you make your face to shine upon him and grant him your peace. Now and forevermore. Amen

Thursday, October 19, 2006

There it is again TRUST

My lips will Praise you O God.

Daniel praised you, there was a Lion

David praised you, there were enemies

Jesus praised you, you asked him to die

Job praised you, the enemy took his family

Mary praised you, others thought she was a tramp

I will praise you, in all things I will learn to praise you.

You are my God and my redeemer the deliverer of my soul.

I was reminded again today that God wants me to learn to respond to life free of despair. Trust in the Lord with all your heart. Give thanks to the Lord in all things. God is able to do immeasurably more than I can ask or imagine. God is glorified when nothing but an answer from Him can be the explanation.

Satan wants me to see my rebellion and the rebellion of others as a death blow. God wants me to see it as an opportunity for an eventual victory party. Sometimes the party is around the corner. Sometimes there are many days that require thanksgiving in spite of the circumstances until the victory dance can begin.

My breath prayer since this summer has been: Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, help me to trust you!!

I want to learn to have trust as my automatic response. Thank you Lord for providing lots of opportunities for such a response. May I see them for what they are much sooner in the future.

Thank you Lord for two timely emails, one television station, one radio station and a DVD. Thank you for speaking to me through it all.

Have a mentioned to you lately how amazing I think you are?

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

What will you and I choose?

When I was talking with a friend today I realized how much I want people that I love to experience what I have been recently coming to believe. God loves me. God has buckets and buckets of patience with me. But it is also true that God will not be mocked. God will not allow rebellion in his children to go on unendingly without consequences. I don't mean just natural consequences. I mean God gets involved in teaching you a lesson consequences. If your a parent and you live in a household that is at all like mine you walk this tight rope all the time. When is it wise to let circumstances in relationships or activities to be the teacher? When do you have to force an end to destructive behavior? Who can know the mind of God on this one? From my perspective there seems to be no consistent pattern on God's part. But I am attempting to believe that God does know when to let us suffer natural consequences and when to stop us in our tracks.

Has God been whispering in your ear showing you the natural consequences of rebellion? Do you see it and continue to choose what is unholy? Do you believe that God will get more serious about convincing you are on the wrong path in an area of your life? Do you feel out of control and helpless yet? Yes? Good! Then you still have time to fall on your face before God repent and humble yourself before Him. If you make this choice you will be rescued from destruction.

Or has God already orchestrated events that have forced you to stop what your doing? If He has your still faced with a choice? Even now you can choose not to submit yourself to Him. But oh my, my, my if you do submit. You will see miracles in your life you don't even believe is possible. You can be redeemed from absolutely anything by God's hand. You can be healed. You can be used for God's glory no matter what you've done. You can be full of hope. You can be full of joy. You can know the truth and the truth will set you free.

So what are you going to choose? Are you going to submit yourself to God? Are you going to die to yourself? Are you going to abide, remain in, hang out with, think with, love with Christ? Or are you just going to check in when it gets to tough to do it on your own. When are we going to wake up? When are we going to bow down low in worship?

Do I sound angry? Well I am. I'm angry that our flesh leads us to selfishness every single moment it gets a chance. I'm angry that the evil one is smart enough to trick us. I'm angry my son is growing up in a world that is overflowing with selfishness and pain in every direction.

I wish more people in my life were saying I have to learn to submit myself to God or I'm going to be in serious trouble. I wish more people say obeying God as a priveledge rather then a scary uninviting chore.

I wish God wasn't so in love with the idea of letting us choose between ourselves and Him.

I'm tired of people believing their playing a game of Sorry and it ends up being Russian Roulette.

I'm tired of caring about people and then having to deal with the pain of watching them self destruct.

I don't understand how God has done that for generation upon generation of people!!!!!

Dear God,

I am in awe of your patience, wisdom and self-restraining power. I am thankful that you call on us to submit to you. I'm thankful you go out of your way to teach us you are worthy to be obeyed. I am grateful you are good. I'm grateful your goodness is never ending. Lord forgive us for taking advantage of you. Please keep calling us into your presence. Lord renew our hearts and our minds. Help us to accept your love and forgiveness. Help us to cry out to you day and night. Help us to trust you with all things and in all your ways. Teach us to be true worshipers of you.

There is more in my heart then I can express in words may your Spirit take over and speak on my behalf.

Amen and Amen

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

No Confidence

I have no confidence in the flesh.

Since last Wednesday these words have not been just Paul's, but because of the Holy Spirit, they have become my own. I have been placed by the allowing hand of God and the willful choices of men and women into a season of sorrow upon sorrow. Before that season began I was experiencing a season of personal humiliation. I have dealt with a great deal of pain. At times it has taken me to moments of feely abandoned but that has been rare. Primarily I have experienced God presence. I have crumbled easily. But He has always been quick to lead me back to a place of communion with Him as I try to understand what it is He wants me to learn about Him and about my humanity.

I have experienced some radical changes in my perspectives. Attaining wealth is not something I aspire to. I believe many Chrisitans use the Bible to justify the excess we have and purposely avoid helping the poor. I fear for our future as a people if we don't begin to repent and change course on this issue.

I have avoided denying self. I have avoided surrendering my life to Christ. I have avoided hard truth. I have avoided believing that I can take some confidence in the flesh. I have avoided abiding in Christ. I have avoided a meaningful relationships with Jesus Christ through prayer. This season of sorrow and humiliation has successfully opened my eyes to all I have avoided and has invited me to embrace a deeper and more committed relationship to Jesus Christ.

What I am looking for now is the God given ability to willfully choose: Lord Jesus Christ I will trust you no matter how much trusting you hurts or costs me. I believe that the evidence that this has changed in me will be the ability to be joyful in the midst of sorrow.

Dear Heavenly Father,
There have been days when I have felt lost and I have not understood your purposes. Thank you for walking right next to me. Thank you for your patience with me. Thank you for your steadfastness with me. Thank you for speaking to me through your Word and Your Spirit. Thank you for calling me into a deeper relationship with you. Thank you for sustaining me and providing me endurance I do not posess. Thank you for my brothers and sisters in the Lord who understand this journey and have been priceless to me as I have held on during days marked by evil. Lord teach me to hate sin. Thank you for your promise that you will keep loving me. Thank you that your love overflows to others through a surrendered life. I desire to continue growing in my friendship with you and in your Lordship over my life. I praise you that out of that reality will be opportunities for service that will bring help to others and glory to your name. I have no confidence in the flesh. You are Holy and mighty and worthy of all praise and glory forever and ever. Amen

Thursday, October 05, 2006


I'm sure this post will be a rambling journey because that is exactly what is happening in my heart.

My heart was broken recently. Everyone around me is pointing me to Jesus. That was extremely helpful in the beginning. Because I did pull my hand from Jesus hand. I did turn my back towards Him. I did get angry with Him. I had hours of time when I wondered if all of us who have faith in Jesus Christ have been duped. I have never before spent hours in that place. I have only spent brief seconds there in the past. The combination of evidence in my life and the accumulation of evidence from the lives of other believers has in the past always brought me away from that place quickly. That wasn't enough this time. The fear in those hours was almost overwhelming. I was grasping for something anything. I don't know what. I was confused. I was sad. I was scared. If I didn't come out of this my identity would be changed and therefore every relationship I have would be changed. I couldn't bear thinking beyond that point. I slept a few hours. I got up. I can't go to church. I can't pray. I can't read the bible. I'm lost. Hours past. I came to the conclusion there would be nothing in my life left if God did not exist.

So I sat down in my office. I picked up my Bible and I said okay God if you exist your going to have to show up. I randomly opened up my bible. I started reading at II Kings 6. Elisha has been getting messages from the Lord that allowed the Israel troops to be on guard and avoid conflict with their enemies. The enemies were getting fed up and decided to go after Elisha. Overnight the encampment where Elisha lived was surrounded by the enemy. When the servant woke up he was understandably afraid. Elisha asked the Lord to allow his servant to see who it was that was on their side. The Lord showed them the hills were full of horses and chariots of fire..... And then the wall I was building crumbled. In a second I was aware that God had brought me to a passage of scripture that was dealing with the very epicenter of my fear.

The situation that broke my heart last week it seems was the straw that broke the camels back. In the last three years and particuarily in the last six months my husband and I have been surrounded by life and death stories of those who have chosen to follow after their flesh and have not submitted themselves to God. These aren't people that are out there somewhere that we hear about. These are people we love and have personal relationships with. The victories are small and the tragedies are great. We are watching people literally killing themselves physically and emotionally. I was just like the servant of Elisha standing there with nothing left to do. From my vantage point the only thing left was defeat. The enemy had outsmarted us. When God spoke to me through His word and spoke directly to my worst fear the floodgates of faith opened up. God does not let us demand what we do not need. But when we need something He gives it to us generously. I had no right to demand a message from the Lord. But because He knew I needed it He did it in such a way to minister to my deepest need at the time. What an amazing blessing and perfect gift from the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

One of the gifts I have received from my broken heart is this phrase: I put no confidence in the flesh. Without putting it into those words before I realize now that I have been in an intense battle. I know in my head that God teaches us not to put in confidence in our flesh. But my heart has been reluctant to believe this or understand this. My heart gets it now. I hope my heart doesn't forget it.

My questions:

What is it going to take for us to hate sin?

When are we going to realize that dying to self and living for God is the one and only way to experience life?

When are we going to realize that pride isn't just annoying it destroys us and it hurts the people around us?

How do we submit ourselves wholly unto God and not appear to be a freakshow in this age?

How has God endured the sorrow of broken lives for thousands upon thousands of years?

I will not survive the sorrow without God. I want to have a heart that walks with joy regardless of the realities of this world. I want to be able to trust Him always.

So to everyone that pointed me to Jesus. Thank you. To my God, thank you for the promise that you will never let us go. Thank you for not letting me go.

Praise God from whom all blessings flow. Praise Him all creatures here below. Praise Him above, ye heavenly host. Praise Father Son and Holy Ghost. Amen

Friday, September 29, 2006

Just Thoughts

Prayer - I praise God for all the answers to prayer I received this week. I praise God He is teaching me to trust Him with the requests that can't be answered this week.

Love - God showed me again this week how much He loves each and everyone of us. I am in awe of God.

Psalm 20
In times of trouble, may the LORD respond to your cry.
May the God of Israel keep you safe from all harm.
May he send you help from his sanctuary
and strengthen you from Jerusalem.
May he remember all your gifts
and look favorably on your burnt offerings.
May he grant your heart's desire
and fulfill all your plans.
May we shout for joy when we hear of your victory,
flying banners to honor our God.
May the LORD answer all your prayers.
Now I know that the LORD saves his anointed king.
He will answer him from his holy heaven
and rescue him by his great power.
Some nations boast of their armies and weapons,
but we boast in the LORD our God.
Those nations will fall down and collapse,
but we will rise up and stand firm.
Give victory to our king, O LORD!
Respond to our cry for help.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

To blog or not to blog?

Why on earth am I creating a blog?

I suppose the number one reason is that I have always been a letter writer at heart. Even though it could be argued that my technical abilities as a writer are frail at best, I enjoy attempting to express myself through the written word.

Also, I have moved around quite a bit in my life time. I have friends and family who I love dearly who have moved away from me. In this world where we don't live on the same block for a lifetime this form of communication makes sense.

A blog seems a little less intrusive then email. I often want to express what God is teaching me or would love to be taught by others by asking questions. But I have shied away from writing because I don't want to be intrusive. So I hope as I share what is on my heart that you, when prompted by the Lord, will return the favor and share your heart with me.

Why did I choose the blog name beloved-daughter? As I was writing down possibilities for blog names I realized I wanted the name to be reflective of something I know I am now and do not expect will ever change.

I am the beloved daughter of Ron and Vera White. I was also the beloved granddaughter of all four of my grandparents. It was explained to me about 10 years ago or so that I am not only the daughter of the King of Kings but the beloved daughter. Interestingly enough, as it turns out my name Cheri means beloved. My husband's name David also means beloved. The very best part of being a beloved daughter is that it is an identity that I share with every women who has been drawn by God to put her faith and trust in Jesus Christ.

Dear Lord,

I desire for time I spend on to be for your glory. I pray you will strengthen my relationship with you through the time I spend contemplating and engaging in conversation with others about You and the lives You have called us to lead.

In Jesus name I pray. Amen.