In That Moment {Encouragement Cafe}



God is connecting me with some incredible women lately, including the ladies at the Encouragement Cafe. I feel honored that they allowed me to share my heart through a devotion on their site today. It's a bit of my testimony... and I hope you will join me...

Click here to visit the Encouragement Cafe and read. After you read, I would love for you to come back here and share a comment with me.


Tune-In Tuesday: I Lift My Hands



Today is Tune-In Tuesday! A day where we meet together to worship. I'm a little late getting this post up, so I'm going to keep the linky alive a little longer.  Here is what we do on Tuesdays at Grow Where You're Planted:

Every Tuesday, I will be writing about a song that God is using in my life. A song that is particularly speaking to me in whatever season I may be going through. The invitation is for you to jump in and do it, too! Here are the steps:

1.      Pick a song that is especially meaningful for you at this time in your life and write about it. Really think about the lyrics… and let them change you.
2.      Link up here using the linky tool at the bottom of this post. Use the name of your song as the title of your link. (If you haven’t done this before, feel free to email me with questions.) If you don't have a blog, leave a comment explaining your song.
3.      Visit other people’s blogs and worship with them…. Leaving comments as you do.
4.      Spread the word. Grab the button in the left column and add it to your post. That way, others can link up, as well. Tweet about it… Try to get others in on the conversation.
5.      And the main thing… worship!


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A new favorite worship song of mine is I Lift My Hands by Chris Tomlin. It’s on his new CD (And If Our God Is For Us) and is probably my favorite song out of the whole bunch. Push play and listen as you read…


My biggest stronghold is well… myself. I always seem to try to do things my way instead of trusting that God knows what is best for me. We all struggle with selfishness, but sometimes I think I am the queen of self-service living.

This beautiful song calls me to lift my hands…. to believe again… to believe that He alone is my refuge and my strength. To let go and let Him lead me.

Saturday night at She Speaks, Ann Voskamp called us to open-handed living. To live not closed-fisted, as how we were born, but to open our hands and accept the incredible gifts God has placed in our lives. Her talk reminded me of this song. And when we sang it Sunday morning, I felt an incredible freedom.

Today, I’m inviting you to join me in lifting up your hands to believe again. Wherever you are in your life, whatever you are going through, allow God to be your refuge and strength. Your healer. Your fortress. Your faithful friend.

Let faith arise.

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Winner of Notes to Aspiring Writers eBook



The winner of a copy of Notes to Aspiring Writers is... Kandi Hampson! Thanks to all who entered... Don't forget that you can get Brooke's eBook right now for just $2.99 here: Notes to Aspiring Writers.

If you missed reading my review of this awesome book, you can read it here.

Notes to Aspiring Writers {A Review... and a GIVEAWAY!}



***And the winner of a copy of Notes to Aspiring Writers is... Kandi Hampson! Thanks to all who entered... Don't forget that you can get Brooke's eBook right now for just $2.99 here: Notes to Aspiring Writers.***


As an “aspiring writer,” I was excited to see what new tidbits of information Brooke had to offer. I have admired her since I found her in blogland. Her heart… her sweet spirit… her pure joy of writing… and her desire to see moms on their knees in prayer for their sons. What I found in this eBook was more than I expected.

You see, this “how to” eBook is not what you would think. It’s not about how to technically improve your writing. It’s about how to ready your heart for what the Lord has in store for your life. It’s about finding HIS plan for your life, NOT chasing your dreams.

As I have been preparing to leave for She Speaks, this very easy and quick read has spoken to my heart in a very convicting way. As I go to the conference this weekend, I will be seeking what God wants to do with me next. Not what I think is the next step in my writing journey.

If you are an aspiring writer (or anyone who is trying to figure out God’s plan for your life), I encourage you to read this great eBook. It will convict you and it will change your perspective… in a good way.

Thanks, Brooke, for giving me the opportunity to receive a copy for free to review for you. I am honored to be able to recommend Notes to Aspiring Writers to those who read this blog.

And as a special gift, I am allowed to give away ONE copy to a reader. Here are some ways you can get in on the giveaway:

1.      “Like” Notes to Aspiring Writers on Facebook;
2.      Tweet about this review (making sure to include my handle - @paulaebert);
3.      Leave a comment about why you want to read the book.

You can do any or all of the above. Leave a comment below telling me each thing you did (obviously #3 will speak for itself)… and each will be a SEPARATE entry. :)

I will close the entries on Monday evening, July 25th, at 5:00pm EST and the winner will be announced on Tuesday morning.

If you want to go ahead and buy the book so you can start reading, you can do so by this link: Notes to Aspiring Writers by Brooke McGlothlin.

Tune-In Tuesday: How He Loves




Today is the first Tune-In Tuesday! I’m so excited! I love music and I love to see people connecting with their Creator through worship music.

We all like different types of music. Some of us like it all. Some of us only like one style… or maybe two. My prayer is that Tuesdays at Grow Where You’re Planted will become a place where we meet to worship together. To learn about each other’s heart languages. And maybe to even experience worship through someone else’s heart language.

So, what’s the plan? Every Tuesday, I will be writing about a song that God is using in my life. A song that is particularly speaking to me in whatever season I may be going through. The invitation is for you to jump in and do it, too! Here are the steps:

1.      Pick a song that is especially meaningful for you at this time in your life and write about it. Really think about the lyrics… and let them change you.
2.      Link up here using the linky tool at the bottom of this post. Use the name of your song as the title of your link. (If you haven’t done this before, feel free to email me with questions.)
3.      Visit other people’s blogs and worship with them…. Leaving comments as you do.
4.      Spread the word. Grab the button in the left column and add it to your post. That way, others can link up, as well. Tweet about it… Try to get others in on the conversation.
5.      And the main thing… worship!

I have no idea how today’s will go. Since it’s the first time, we may have no one link up, or we may have a lot of people. If you stopped by today and God used this in your life, I hope you will make this a regular stop on Tuesdays.

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My song today is How He Loves (the David Crowder version).

There is no other song that speaks to my heart as much as this one does. It is my favorite running song, my favorite worship song, my favorite anything song. It is the song that seems to always bring tears. The one that causes me to literally forget where I am (physically) for a moment.

He is jealous for me. Really? The God of the universe desires my heart that much?

But it’s these lyrics that get me the most:

When all of a sudden
I am unaware of these afflictions eclipsed by glory

And I realize just how beautiful You are
And how great Your affections are for me

And I’m reminded of Paul’s words in 2 Corinthians 4:16-18…

So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.

God loves us so much that He is using our afflictions for His glory! We forget this too often… stay wrapped up in the here and now. But it’s when we let go of our present pain and allow room for His beautiful future that we really experience God.

Oh… how He loves us... And I don’t have time to maintain these regrets.

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Your turn! Link up below and tell us about a worship song that touches your heart. Don’t have a blog? That’s okay… just write about it in the comments below. Thanks for stopping by!

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Music That Moves Me, Part 3



It’s finally Friday!! :) Which means it’s finally time to talk about my very favorite running song. But it's more than just a running song. It is my favorite worship song. My I-could-listen-to-it-over-and-over-again-and-never-get-tired-of-it song. Here it is... (Amy, I know you've been waiting all week.) :)

Favorite running song #1 – How He Loves by Passion/David Crowder

Listen to it and read the lyrics below (the words that speak to me the most are bold).


He is jealous for me
Loves like a hurricane; I am a tree
Bending beneath the weight of His wind and mercy


When all of a sudden 
I am unaware of these afflictions eclipsed by glory 
And I realize just how beautiful You are
And how great Your affections are for me 

And O how He loves us
Oh, O how He loves us
How He loves us all

(repeat all)

Yeah He loves us
O how He loves us
O how He loves us
O how He loves 


We are His portion and He is our prize
Drawn to redemption by the grace in His eyes
If His grace is an ocean, we're all sinking
 


So Heaven meets earth like an unforeseen kiss
And my heart turns violently inside of my chest
I don't have time to maintain these regrets 


When I think about… the way

He loves us
O how He loves us
O how He loves us
O how He loves


(lots of repeats)

I could talk a lot about what this song means to me (and I will… on Tune-In Tuesday). But for today… just know it is my favorite running song.

Do you have a favorite song? A favorite worship song that truly brings you into the throne of grace? Keep it in your mind for Tuesday!! Just another reminder about Tune-In Tuesdays...  Starting next week (July 19th), we will link up here to share songs that God is using in our lives.

I’m really excited about this! I’ve always wanted to do a “linky party,” and being a musician… this is a perfect fit! Learning to truly worship Him through the songs we sing is simply amazing. So there you have it.

Do you really think about the words when you’re singing them on Sundays? Or is it just part of the routine when you go into the worship center? This is a chance to allow God to draw you into a closer worship experience with Him… maybe in a more intense way than you ever have before.

Don’t have a blog? NO PROBLEM! You can write about your song in a comment.

What I’m looking forward to is believers coming together to share with each other in our own heart languages. We all have different types of worship songs that touch us. From hymns to southern gospel to contemporary. My desire is that Tune-In Tuesdays will be a place where they can all come together... After all, we are worshiping the same Creator! Would LOVE to have you all join us! And PLEASE help me spread the word!

In case you missed these…
Monday’s song: Awakening by Passion/Chris Tomlin
Wednesday’s song: Grace Will Be My Song by Fee

Music That Moves Me, Part 2



Today, I’m just jumping in and announcing my second favorite running song! You may not know this one…. but it has become one of my favorite Fee songs. I’ll talk more after the lyrics.

Favorite running song #2 – Grace Will Be My Song by Fee

Listen to it here and read the lyrics below.

Jesus, Jesus, Jesus; You ransomed one like me
Jesus, Jesus, Jesus; Your blood, my liberty
And now my shame is gone; and grace will be my song

Jesus, Jesus, Jesus; Lover of the weak
Jesus, Jesus, Jesus; with strength to carry me
And now my shame is gone; and grace will be my song

Glory, Glory, Glory to the one who saved my soul
Glory, Glory, Glory to the Everlasting Lord
Glory, Glory, Glory to the King who sits enthroned… Our God
(This repeats a few times)

Are you seeing the pattern? My favorite running songs have simple, yet powerful lyrics. They start slow and soft, then build. By the time I get to the end of the song, I’m lost in it. Worshiping my Savior. Forgetting where I am for a moment. Maybe not the safest thing when I’m on the road!! ;)

I like to plug this one in as my second song. Right after the warm up. By the time it gets to the 2nd time through the glory, glory, glory part, it explodes.

LOVE. IT.

But it’s not just the way the music builds. The words are so incredible you just want to shout them! And now… My shame is gone! And grace will be my song! I guess you could say this is one of my lifesongs. Because of where my choices led me about 10 years ago, this song means quite a bit to me.

We all have a story. And we probably all have songs that particularly remind us of the individualized grace that was shown to each of us. God loves us so much that He sent His son to die for us on the cross. It doesn’t matter where we’ve been. What we’ve done. And if you believe this and have accepted Him as your Savior and Lord, your shame IS gone. Grace IS your song. If you are reading this and do not know Jesus, I invite you to read The Story and learn more about how He can change your life. You can also click on the "Know Jesus?" tab in the top menu.

Did you miss Monday’s song? Check it out here.

So, what do you think Friday’s song will be? Here’s a hint… It’s probably my favorite worship song of all time. Just think of the song that lifts the roof when it is sung. The one that EVERYBODY knows the words to… I know all of our churches are different, but… any guesses?

Music That Moves Me, Part 1



Music moves me.

And in the series this week, you’ll see how it LITERALLY moves me. I was out running one day when suddenly I recognized patterns within all of my favorite running songs. Thought it would be cool to share.

What are the songs? Not the big Rise and Sing by Fee or any of the heavy/fast stuff. I know… surprised me, too. Don’t get me wrong. I love those songs. But the lyrics that lead me to truly experience worship are the ones that make my running time sweet.

Being a musician, there are obviously musical elements that get me, too. All 3 of the songs I’m writing about have guitars and drums. And they all start out very soft and slow, then build to an incredible point where you feel as if you are going to take off (or at least I do). I think that’s what does it for me. So, without further ado… starting with #3 and working our way to #1… (Forgive me, I've just always wanted to say something like that) :)


Favorite running song #3 – Awakening by Passion/Chris Tomlin.

I believe Chris Tomlin is one of the greatest worship writers of all time. It’s not because he is a super duper songwriter. He is anointed. I believe God gave him such a gift because He knew that Chris was a servant who would take up the challenge. Put him together with David Crowder, Matt Redman, Charlie Hall, Kristian Stanfill, Fee, Hillsong UNITED, and Christy Nockels, and it is just magic! (Just a hint at my other 2 favorite running songs… both artists are involved in Passion projects!)

Click here to listen to Awakening while you’re reading the rest of this post. Here are the lyrics:

In our hearts, Lord, in this nation, Awakening
Holy Spirit, we desire, Awakening

For You and You alone; Awake my soul, awake my soul and sing
For the world You love; Your will be done, let Your will be done in me

In Your presence, in Your power, Awakening
For this moment, for this hour, Awakening

For You and You alone; Awake my soul, awake my soul and sing
For the world You love; Your will be done, let Your will be done in me

For You and You alone; Awake my soul, awake my soul and sing
For the world You love; Your will be done, let Your will be done in me

Like the rising sun that shines; From the darkness comes a light
I hear Your voice and this is my... Awakening

Like the rising sun that shines; From the darkness comes a light
I hear Your voice and this is my... Awakening

Like the rising sun that shines; Awake my soul, awake my soul and sing
From the darkness comes a light; Awake my soul, awake my soul and sing

Like the rising sun that shines; Awake my soul, awake my soul and sing
Only You can raise a life; Awake my soul, awake my soul and sing

Awakening is an incredible song, with very simple, repetitive lyrics. Lyrics calling us out of our “darkness.” Calling us to awaken and show Christ to the world. Christ in us. We are called to become a true light in the dark. And the combination of music and lyrics "awaken" my  spirit (and my legs) when I run! Try it! Add it to your workout playlist and see what I mean.

Do you have a favorite song for running? A favorite worship song that truly brings you into the throne of grace? Well… keep it in your mind for next Tuesday! Starting next week (July 19th), I’m going to try one of those fun linky-type posts.

Tune-In Tuesday will be where we all come together and share songs that God is using to speak to us… weekly.

Maybe you don't really put a lot of thought into those songs we sing on Sundays. This is your opportunity to really dig in there and see why these songs are tools God uses to bring us to a closer worship experience with Him!

What I’m looking forward to is believers coming together to share with each other in our own heart languages. We all have different types of worship songs that touch us. From hymns to southern gospel to contemporary. This is where they can all come together... After all, we are worshiping the same Creator! Would LOVE to have you all join us! And spread the word! :)

On Wednesday, come back for my favorite running song #2. Anyone have a guess??

I am grateful...



I haven’t done a 5 Minute Friday in a couple of weeks. This one, however, really spoke to me. If for no other reason, I’m doing this one because I need to do it. I need to be reminded that all the little things that frustrate me are actually there to show me how strong God is. Here we go…

GO

I am grateful...

For the toys on the floor that I seem to pick up 200 times per day...
It means the kids are full of life and love to play.

For the dishes that continue to stack up no matter how much I clean them...
It means we have food to eat, no matter what else may be going on.

For all of the little things in the house that need to be fixed...
It means we have a house that God has provided for us to live.

For the noise, the screams, the fights...
It means the kids are healthy and have some grit about them.

For the disrespectful phase that we seem to be going through right now...
It means God has trusted us enough to teach them how to come out of it.

For the financial struggles...
It means God trusts us enough to let go and trust Him (even though we fail).

For the tears, the feelings of failure, the spiritual warfare...
It means God wants to use us for something that we can’t even see yet.

For the years of wilderness that have brought us to now...
It means that God never gave up on us and has a bigger purpose.

For the things in our lives that hurt. The things that we just don’t understand...
It means God is teaching us that He is in complete control.

STOP

What are you grateful for today? Would love for you to tell me… and also to jump in with Lisa-Jo and link up.



If you are finding this blog today and you have experienced any kind of pregnancy loss, I also want to invite you to see my post from July 4thThe Pain of Miscarriage. I’m doing a survey to help my research to put together a resource booklet for women who are experiencing miscarriage. Would love for you to take the survey if you feel led.

The Pain of Miscarriage



Death is a part of life. The grief that goes along with some types of death is hard to comprehend. Miscarriage is one. For women who lose a child, even early in pregnancy, it is an incredibly painful experience.

My husband and I have had 2 miscarriages. You can read about our second one here: Still, Part 2 of 2. Since the time of that miscarriage, my heart has been burdened for hurting women. The women who went through a pregnancy loss without completely grieving… The women who are going through it now… The men beside them who are trying to be strong support while they are trying to deal with their own grief.

God has led me to this point. I am in the beginning stages of research for a new resource eBook that will help all involved to cope with the pain of pregnancy loss. I’m hoping that you all might be able to help me with this research.

Have you experienced miscarriage or another type of pregnancy loss? Do you know someone who has? If so, please let me know… by comment or email. And if you are willing, please click here and take a survey about your experiences. Your answers will be used to help others understand and work through what they are experiencing. And if you are on Twitter, Facebook, any social networking channels… please spread the word. Thanks ahead of time for helping!

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