Friday, May 11, 2012

Who are You Working For?

My 8 year old was working on her spelling homework. It was a simple assignment; write each word three times.  Meanwhile I was getting ready for a church meeting. Honestly, I was mostly dreading a church meeting. There are lots of things I love doing in the church. Leading Bible study and speaking to women are two. But this meeting, ugh!

A very sweet older woman in the church asked me to serve on the committee to call people to remind them about our capital campaign. And while every fiber in my body screamed, "NO!" my voice meekly said, "Yes ma'am." *sigh!* I absolutely did not want to make those phone calls, and I absolutely did not want to go to that meeting.

I looked over my daughter's spelling, and noted her messy handwriting. "What's up with the messy handwriting?"  "I hate this assignment, so I got mad, and when I get mad my handwriting gets messy."  Immediately the PERFECT Bible verse sprang to mind. (Don't you love it when that happens?)

Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as if working for the Lord, not men. Col 3:23

But before I could quote it to my daughter, God whispered to me.
"No, it's for you."  What?
"The verse, it's for you." What do you mean?
"The meeting tonight, the one you've been mentally complaining about since you remembered it. The one you've been thinking up cute and clever ways to complain about via facebook updates. Do it for me. As if working for me."

I'd like to state for the record here, that my first reaction was NOT "God thought the FB update I was mentally preparing was cute and clever!" I just thought that now as I am typing this.  No, my first reaction was "Thank you, God, for the reality check."

It's so easy to look at someone else's life and find the "perfect verse" for them. It's harder to open our eyes to our own "sins," our own selfishness and grumpiness, and come up with a verse for ourselves.

I am thankful for that still small voice that whispered to my heart.  We all can make changes in our behavior, like I did that night. First, we must fill our heart with God's word by memorizing scripture. Then we must listen for the Holy Spirit's prompting to recall it at the appropriate time.

We are not called to volunteer for every job at church. We should serve in the areas where we are gifted. However, some jobs, (like spelling homework,) have to be done no matter how much we don't like them. Let's do our best, even on the jobs we hate. Our Teacher will appreciate it.
Kelly Combs is a Christian wife, mom, writer and speaker. You can learn about Kelly by visiting her website at

Chatty Kelly

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Why You Need a Plan, Not a List

Home from the grocery store, I was busily shelving my items while contemplating what I'd make for dinner. My youngest had soccer practice that evening, so it would have to be something quick and easy to make, and if it was a family favorite, all the better. I settled on my homemade pizza.  A quick inventory, however, told me I was missing several key ingredients.  "Okay, tacos it is!" But, oh no, I didn't all have the ingredients for that either.

You did get the part that I'd just returned from the grocery store, right?  And I even used a list!  The problem was my list was simply covering the items we'd run out of, like cereal and lunch bags, and the items I knew I always used like bread and milk.  I didn't have a plan. In this case, a meal plan to determine what I'd have for dinner that week, so my list was essentially useless.

How eye opening that was, because in my life I use a list instead of a plan as well. My list may have "Publish a book" on it, but without a plan that just isn't going to happen it. I have lots of hopes and dreams and even "to-dos" on my list, but without a real plan my list really doesn't do the job. A list just says what you want. A plan says how you will do it.

In their hearts, humans plan their course, bu the Lord establishes their steps. Proverbs 16:9

I love Matthew Henry's commentary on the above verse. He says, "If men make God's glory their end, and his will their rule, he will direct their steps by his Spirit and grace." I want God to direct my steps, but I share a part in planning my course. God wants me to follow his will. But to follow I must move, with a planned course of action.

Do you have a plan for your life's goals, or do you just have a list of goals? What changes can you make to turn your list into a plan and start making things happen? And can you recommend something quick and easy for dinner that doesn't require a trip to the grocery store?


If you'd like a life plan, but have no idea where to start, why not read Michael Hyatt's FREE book, "Creating a Personal Life Plan." You may get a copy simply by subscribing to his blog. 
Kelly Combs is a Christian wife, mom, writer and speaker. You can learn about Kelly by visiting her website at

Chatty Kelly

Monday, May 7, 2012

Faith is Believing...In Yourself

"You are a gifted speaker."
"Sometimes you come across like you're into your third can of Mountain Dew."
"You are a spokesperson for godly mothering."
"I'll bet when you're with a group of women, you're going to speak to them even when you're not asked to speak."

These are some of the statements made to me by my mentor at the SCORRE conference. I have to tell you, this conference was the best, most amazing conference I have ever been to.  I was really challenged, I learned alot, and I met incredible new friends.

My mentoring group (6 men, 2 women, 1 mentor), were all passionate believers. We concluded our week by praying over one another.  My mentor shared with me during the week that he could see me struggling over the method and prayed that I wouldn't give up. How many conferences have this type of leadership? And SCORRE isn't a "Christian" conference! Yes, it is a conference run by Christians, but it isn't for Christians. It is for anyone who wants to communicate better. 

Back to the statements about I heard them, it was easy for me to believe two of them.  Actually I've never heard more accurate descriptions than the one about me speaking at meetings, and regarding the  Mountain Dew. My mentor clearly had the gift of discernment, not just for me, but for every member of our group.  But why is it hard for me to believe the other two, the two that are positive. I am so practiced at deflecting positive comments as "just being nice," after being stripped of my worth as a child.

Yet, by refusing to believe these things, I myself am stripping myself of the worth and value God has placed in me to do his work in ministry. So, remember that leap of faith I took by going to the SCORRE conference last week? I am going to continue to walk in faith that I am gifted, by God, to do the work he prepared for me to do.

Every believer should have faith...not just faith in God, but faith in their God-given gifts for his glory. Every believer should have faith, and by continuing to meet with God daily, in his word, in prayer and in the fellowship of believers, your faith will grow. Faith in God, and in his plans for you. 

"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you. Plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11

What gifts has God given you? Do you trust in him to carry them to completion, to give you hope and a future?
Kelly Combs is a Christian wife, mom, writer and speaker. You can learn about Kelly by visiting her website at

Chatty Kelly