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Now Is The Time

Redding, Ca and Bethel Church have been on my heart and mind for a very long time. Apparently longer than I even realized. I thought it started on this trip, at this moment, at one of the most epic coffee shop's -- (and I don't say that trendy word lightly) Daylight Mind (pictured below).  It overlooks the beautiful Hawaiian ocean, in Kona.  I was visiting a very dear sister who was in her first term at YWAM.  So here the story begins...or so I thought...


  

Hannah and Holly on our way to our daily Daylight Mind Jesus, Coffee, Journal, Bible, morning times 
I remember sitting there with my journal in the mornings and some afternoons with Hannah after sessions with Holly at Ywam and just looking out at this massive expansive ocean and asking God...what next?  I could see His amazing love and grace tidal waving down upon me with each wave that came crashing against the massive rocks beneath me.  We would read His Word and ponder all the speakers notes from the day and the adventures we were on together in Kona and all God was speaking to each of our hearts and share them together.  


It was a destiny trip if I ever had one.  I wrote down..."Bethel?  School of Ministry?  Is that next God?  Where do you want me?"  I knew it was a strong tug...but the timing did not seem right.  The seed had been firmly planted in the soil of my heart though and God was going to take His time patiently watering and growing, equipping, and strengthening each root for a solid foundation.  It seems really crazy in hindsight but not really thought because, "Many are the plans of a man's (woman's) heart, but the Lord determines (her) steps."- Proverbs 16:9 My plans seemed to be going one way and His were this all along, they were this the whole time.  Little did I know.  How cool is that though?!  All I have to do now is step into them?  Submit to His will and His best follows. Seems simple right?  Well should be. Our emotions can get in the way sometimes.  So fast forward three years later and I am at WorshipU-- life-changing two weeks of my forever!  More on that later.  God is literally saying.  I got you right where I want you girl.  Oh boy.  I can feel it.  That seed is turning into a giant oak tree. Right before my eyes and there is nothing I can do but watch it grow grow grow and display HIS splendor and majesty and mystery. I want more...MORE GOD.  


Lookey here...




Date marked Feb 2014. Okay so I guess it was four years ago I was already interested and reaching out to Bethel. Very interesting. But let's be real.  God places desires in our hearts before the foundations of the earth, when He forms us in our mother's wombs.  Amazing how it all comes into fruition though...a beautiful and glorious unfolding.  He can see the whole extraordinary mosaic, we only see a small little pixel at a time, right in front of us and sometimes even that is foggy.  Just keep trusting and obeying.  One foot in front of the next.  Following the leader.  He illuminates the path before us.  His Word is a lamp unto my feet, a light unto our path.- Psalm 119:105.  I can remember so clearly coming back from Kona and feeling like I was in the cave with Jesus, like David.  He was hiding me beneath the shadow of His wings.  Rooting those seeds deeply and even though it felt dark and I wasn't quite sure what the next step was-- I didn't have the Godly vision yet-- He was still working on watering and growing and needed to work on me a whole lot in the beauty from ashes process.  I wrote down in my journal several times in bold print NOW IS THE TIME.  June 8th 2015 




I kept hearing NOW IS THE TIME tugging on my heart from God, but was not sure what all it meant or necessarily entailed.  I just felt the weight of it and how seriously He was taking this process of sanctification and heart preparation.  Then fast forward three years later, as I am driving up the hill to Bethel's campus going to WorshipU one morning-- I look over at the church signage and there it is. NOW IS THE TIME of God's favor, today is the day of salvation."- 2 Corinthians 6:2.  Whew.  I got chills.  I was already seeking the Lord deeply and singing my prayers to Him on the drive over to school (some of my favorite times with Him ever are in the car and on the drives).  At this pointed I started to cry, because that was the only day I had looked over at the church sign.  The next day I looked again because I wanted to take a picture of it, but they changed it.  Duh- they change it daily.  Which made it that much more valuable that God had me look at it that very day, that very MOMENT,-- driving up the hill to Bethel, school of Worship-- the seed He started revealing to me in 2014 and that He planted in my heart when He knit me together.  What a God, what Father! What extravagant love, and stories He unfolds for His glory.  Oh this is just the beginning...I have so many more God stories to share--- but you can tell where this is leading I am sure.  So much more to come.  I can't write it all in one sitting.  I have tried and the task is overwhelming.  It feels like a novel, so my grandma ever so sweetly gave me some wisdom bombs and took the pressure off.  She reminded me I can just share little by little.  One post at a time-- they will all tie together.  Very similar to God's big beautiful mosaic. So here is a little glimpse of a pixel for now.  He is piecing it all, and I can't wait to get back and write more and witness of His GREATNESS, GOODNESS, LOVE and MIRACLES!  Clearly He is rocking my world and I want to share and praise Him and give Him some major GLORY -- all the glory He deserves because I cannot contain or keep this to myself!!! "We are not meant to contain the glory" - Bill Johnson 
Love always, Mal 

Until we sing again...

It's not goodbye, it's just so long, until we sing again 🎶 Cannot believe yesterday was my "last" time singing & worshipping Father, Son and Spirit with these two incredible human beings... for now. I have been beyond blessed to learn and grow under and alongside such pure spirit-filled hearts as these who live to serve, know, follow hard after Jesus and make Him known in not just the 2 % of their lives on "stage" leading worship but in watching the 98% of their lives exude Him and be their act of worship to Him daily, hourly. What an honor to run this race with them. Love you dear brother and sister in Christ! Always and forever! Can't wait to sing with you again! — with Melissa Duarte and Brian Clemons at Venture Christian Church.
More details to come

John 17: Unity and Oneness



After you listen to someone pray there is no way not to be more drawn to their heart as their walls come tumbling down and their true self is more transparent than ever. It unites and connects you almost instantly. You may not have known them for more than five minutes or maybe you even had preconceived notions about them, but the minute you hear someone come before the Father in prayer and communicate with Him one on one, it reveals a person's heart. You can see them through Jesus and His eyes. There is such an intimacy and vulnerability as you get to share in such a beautiful moment with them talking to God. This is what Jesus did for His disciples, and for us, when He prayed in John 17:20-26. We get to experience Him speaking directly to the Father in prayer, asking Him for unity and oneness on our behalf and future generations to come-- and the whole world. That none should perish. What a powerful and selfless prayer right before He was about to lay it all down - His life His will everything for us. Jesus knew how crucial community and unity in the faith would be and is -- (see Ephesians 4:4-6).




As we get to witness this prayer between Son and Father it reveals His heart to us, drawing us closer to Him as we get to know more deeply His heart, character, and love for us. As we get this amazing glimpse into the mysterious, awe-mazing, intimate relationship between them we also get to share IN and ABIDE IN it-- ALL OF IT. How can we not fall more in love?! The love the Father has for us, expressed through Jesus, IS His glory revealed in us. Just as the love and delight the Father has in Jesus, is His splendor on display in His Son, and in us, as we are children of God. He knew we would run around trying to seek glory in ALL other kinda things (yeah I said kinda things) but ultimately the only glory we need is KNOWING WE ARE LOVED BY GOD, and we have been ADOPTED as HIS SONS and DAUGHTERS through believing in Jesus Christ. That's the glory, HIS glory, on display IN US, THROUGH US, the glory JESUS shares with us that the Father shared with HIM. WOW. He delights in us and HIS LOVE FOR US and IN US Glorifies HIM! When we let that SINK DEEP DOWN INTO OUR JESUS SOILED ROOTS NOTHING CAN STOP HIS LIGHT FROM SHINING in us!


   #IwillgloryinYOU #mindblown #readJohn17 #biblestudy #afterthoughts #southhillswomensbiblestudy #southhills



God has GOOD plans for His children and uses it ALL for good if we let Him


    I have some exciting news to share with you all! After much prayer, wise counsel, seeking the Lord, His Word, and then taking the necessary steps... God is leading me to go on a couple ministry opportunities and adventures this summer.  I was accepted to Bethel's Worship University in July! I am also returning to the Gaither Songwriting Intensive in Indiana-- this will be my third year.  It feels very full-circle somehow.  Or maybe redemptive -- there is something very significant aboutthe three- third year part.  I just know that I'm about to take some major leaps of faith and follow where He is leading.  Trust & obey, there's no other way.  It feels like I am going alone, but He goes before me and holds my right hand. That's where, how, and when He shows up in the craziest and most magnificent ways imaginable.  I am really excited because I actually have two solid songs this year to bring and share with my classmates, peers, and songwriting/ worship leading / songwriting clinicians (if I muster up the courage) Oh pray for me friends!! We only get one shot at this life.  I have been hibernating with Jesus whenever I can (even amidst the busy of life)-- preparing my heart and digging into Him in many ways.  He has been using the hard, painful,  real and ugly that I have been uprooting from the past and even present and helping me walk through it with Him to bring me to my knees in worship and song in such a way that I have never known before.  Intimacy through this music love language with Him.  I wish I had the time and way to get these songs professionally recorded but I am just so thankful to even be going on these journeys with Him and also to get to express myself musically in this way for His glory and by His grace.  He is amazing like that!  He will use it all-- imperfect and everything.  These trips, conferences, university's, the room and board, flights, food, gas money-- it all adds up, so garageband is good enough for now ;) But let me just say the reward on the other side is so much greater than I can even describe. Knowing HIM more. Serving Him and others. Becoming who He created me to be. Learning, growing. It is all part of the refining process, and it is how He ushers us into our God-given destiny as we listen, trust and obey.

All the Lord's promises prove true and pure. As for God, his way is perfect. The word of Yahweh is tried. He is a shield to all those who take refuge in him.- Psalm 18:30

But this beautiful treasure is contained in us—cracked pots made of earth and clay—so that the transcendent character of this power will be clearly seen as coming from God and not from us. - 2 Corinthians 4:7

Ways to support if you feel led:

PRAYER: The power of prayer is real and oh how I would appreciate, cherish and covet your prayers for protection, grace, and God's strength and confidence in all of this.  Just overall God's protection and favor for safe car, hotel, flight, as I drive and fly quite a few miles "by myself" (Jesus is with me) but He does want us partnering in prayer.  And as I face some spiritual giants as well-- stay in prayer for me.  Greater is He that is in us!  

LOVE OFFERING support: If God put's it upon your heart you can donate in any way-- anything helps and goes a long way!  You can donate on my actual blog site--- the button to the far right that says "Donate to MUSIC (Making Us Second In Christ) Ministry" when you click the button below that picture box that says Donate it will redirect your browser to my PayPal account and you can add any amount.  Or at the bottom of this blog I have linked the donate button as well.  If you prefer by mail, you can also contact me for my mailing address or just to send encouragement :) I will be  missing work for a little over a month for both of these opportunities that the Lord has opened up in this next season.  I am feeling very expectant, not gonna lie, also totally terrified; but I think that's what taking a leap of faith is all about right?! If you weren't a bit terrified would it really be a leap? Would you really need faith?  No.  You would still be in your comfort zone bubble.  I don't want to be there.  There is no growth there and certainly no reward.   God always provides and I trust Him.  I have already seen that in incredible ways!  Just to brag on God a bit more-- my boss, manager and coworkers have been SO amazingly supportive of these passions, dreams and callings that God has placed on my heart.  I feel deeply fortunate that they did not ask me to quit or fire me for being gone so long this summer.   Truly.  It was just the opposite, the encouragement God gave through them and countless others in my Bible study and family and friends.  He is a good Father.  God bless you all and thank you so much for coming on this amazing overwhelming, healing,  transformational, sanctifying, life-changing experience with me.  Thank you for letting me share my heart and God stories with you!  Thank you for taking the time to read my updates along the way and for your love, support and prayers!  It means more to me than you know!

Love always in Him -- Malorie 

                      WORSHIP U and GAITHER CONFERENCE FYI AND FAQ'S 

Below is some information about my time coming up at WorshipU Bethel, Redding:

The curriculum of WorshipU On Campus consists of 4 major components. Main sessions teach on matters of the heart, understanding the kingdom, and developing a lifestyle of worship. Breakout sessions are devoted to specific areas of interest such as instrument training, songwriting and worship leading. Worship sessions are a central part of each day, led by world-renowned leaders. Community activities built into the program make it easy to form friendships with like-minded people from around the globe.

Main Sessions you’ll hear a powerful selection of teachings on matters of the heart, the Spirit of God, the power of worship, and Biblical foundations of worship. With an emphasis on your personal journey with The Lord, these teachings provide valuable insights for all worshippers that will nurture your leadership skills, relationships, and overall pursuit of God.

Each day begins with an extended time of worship led by Bethel Music and guest worship leaders. Main sessions teach on developing a lifestyle of worship. Breakout sessions are devoted to specific areas of interest including instrument training, songwriting and leadership. Additionally, there will be a mixture of Q&A panels, live band sessions and hands-on workshops. Community activities are built into WorshipU on Campus as a way to cultivate connection among students.  




                             Information about my trip to the Gaither songwriting Intensive: 

Songwriting Intensive 2017
4 Day Event
For those who are serious about delving into the craft of songwriting and want to learn from some of the most accomplished, Gloria Gaither invites you to her hometown of Alexandria, Indiana where she will host her annual ‘Songwriting Intensive’.  Sessions will be held at Gaither Studios and Gaither Family Resources on the campus of Gaither Music Company.
This concentrated weekend of learning, critiquing, and interacting will allow you the priceless opportunity to learn from experienced and successful songwriters chosen by Gloria Gaither.  These four days will be packed with inspiration, instruction, Worship, and fellowship with other songwriters and writers-in-process.

Beginning on Thursday evening, you will enjoy an informal time of refreshments and getting acquainted with both the clinicians and other participants.  Friday and Saturday will be packed with in-depth sessions drawing on the unique expertise of each clinician, then the weekend will conclude with a final worship time on Sunday morning.
- The Friday and Saturday evening sessions are open to all participants.

- The Friday session will be led by Bill Gaither and friends. Bill will discuss the crafting of perfect music to lyrics.

- On Saturday, Buddy Green will be “raising the bar” for the Songwriting Intensive. Buddy will lead discussions what makes a song great and what makes a song live.

- Gloria, Dony and Reba McGuire (Dotty Rambo's Daughter), Buddy Green, Ken Medema and Rory Feek will finish off the weekend with Sunday morning Worship.

Classes with all Clinicians, Collaboration with artists in small intimate settings, A chance to learn from Gloria Gaither and other distinguished award winning singer/ songwriters.
2017 Clinicians
Gloria Gaither - Honored as "Christian Songwriter of the Century" by ASCAP, Gloria is an accomplish lyricist with more than 700 songs to her credit.  She is a Gospel Music Hall of Fame inductee and winner of multiple Dove and Grammy Awards, yet it is now her mission to pass along her passion for excellent songwriting to a new generation of artists.
Rory Feek - Rory’s unique gift for honest storytelling has struck a chord with audiences and fellow-writers of all generations.  Drawing from his life experiences, he has quietly and humbly earned a place among the most respected songwriters in country music and across multiple genres.
Dony & Reba McGuire - This songwriting duo has received numerous Dove and Grammy Awards, and their songs have been performed by some of the most recognized arists in the industry.  The knowledge you will glean from these experienced clinicians will be invaluable.
Ken Medema - Ken is a composer-singer-songwriter who has been performing globally for more than 40 years. Born almost blind, Ken began playing the piano when he was just five years old.  He has been writing soul stirring songs from his servant heart for most of his life and will pass along valuable experience and insights with budding songwriters.  
Love Offerings: 





Bind my Wandering Heart to Thee - Lent 2017


    I have been listening to June Hunt on talk radio & online (1100 a.m. Hope for the Heart.com) non-stop lately, among other podcasts.  It's like free counseling.  I am soaking up, and trying to learn, as much as I possibly can.  Not just learn, but know.  Know HIM.  Eternal life is knowing God- John 17:3.  I know what season I am in.  It is clear to me.  I don't take that lightly or for granted.  Thank you Abba Father for Your clarity and vision and deep peace.  Even when the wind and waves and storms rage, oh and they 'tidal wave rage' but His deep peace and knowing, promises, Proverbs 3:5-6 style, anchoring me. He alone is my anchor, holding me fast through the season.  I cannot get enough of Him and yet sometimes all the things He is revealing and healing is overwhelming.  But HE is SO GOOD and SO faithful!  He is my joy and freedom.  God knows exactly what I need to hear when I need to hear it.  Sometimes I want human comfort...okay a lot of the time I want that.  And He gives me that when I least expect it mostly-- but not always when I want it.  Actually a lot of times when I want it the most, I don't get it for a while until I get it all from HIM first.  But He is teaching me, especially in this Lent season, how to truly rely on HIM in such a new and beautiful, deeply intimate way.  He is also teaching me about healthy boundaries with others and how to put HIM first and what it looks like to be a GOD-pleaser.  Very counterintuitive for this self-profressed recovering people-pleaser.  I nailed that to the cross, and continue to by His grace and Spirit's power each day.  God has broken the chains.  I am no longer a victim.

    His Holy Spirit is my sweet, sweet comforter.  God is the One who knows me more than anyone ever could, and loves me best and carries my every burden.  And yet, then I look to humans again, try to find my worth / identity in the wrong places, and get the sting of disappointment, heart-ache...etc. and realize once more the tough lesson of "hope deferred makes the heart sick."  And He gently, lovingly reminds me again "Malorie, I am your all and all. Look to me. Turn to me. Let me love you. Show you your roots and true worth-- deeply grounded in love, in Christ. Let me nourish You. Fill You. Comfort. Advocate. No you don't need to defend for yourself anymore, those are the old patters, old ways.  Oh yes, let Me assure you.  This assurance will never run dry, empty or out.  It is not fleeting like the human kind and cannot be taken away or changed by fickle feelings or fleshy selfish desires.  No daughter, my perfect love casts out all fear, and I am for you, never against.  To Me you are perfect and complete-- whole and lovely in every way.  I delight in you.  I am the Lover of Your Soul my darling. I adore you. Beloved."  Ahh yes.  This relationship is the utmost important relationship of my life.  This assurance will not run dry.  It is a lasting deep eternal assurance of who I truly am.  LOVED.  That is who I am and who YOU ARE.  IN CHRIST.  WOW.

    With people we can tend to get all needy and codependent and clingy because they will never ever be able to fill the God-shaped hole that is literally an abyss -- a black hole -- if you will-- if we try filling it with anything or anyone but HIM.  With Him-- I can run back to Him and be as needy as I want-- and HE ADORES my dependency on Him.  I cannot make an idol out of my God.  I cannot have an unhealthy obsession or get too clingy.  I can literally lean on Him as much as I want because He has an endless supply for me.  The more I seek Him the more I will find. What an expansive relationship if we will tap into it-- into Him.  And yet-- I know I am daily "prone to wander."  So I pray, Oh Lord bind my wandering heart to thee!  As one of my favorite hymns goes, "Here's my heart Lord take and seal it. Seal it for Thy courts above!"
    When my hope is truly in Him and I am letting Him be my need meeter, my Husband, my Heavenly Father-- as HE IS-- then I can get through all the rest.  I mean He truly is the only ONE, at the end of the day, who is and will always be, getting me through this life and into Eternity and beyond.  When all fades away, everyone is gone, it is just me and Jesus at the end of my journey on this side of heaven.  Without HIM I have nothing and no one and honestly without Him I am nothing and no one.  Just me and the Triune God.  Our relationship.  I cannot bring anything or anyone with me to heaven either so why cling to anything or anyone but Him?!  And yet we do... and put false expectations and needs onto others that only He was ever meant to be expected to meet.  This time on earth is a beautiful, exquisite, painful, healing, crazy, messy, hard, awe-mazing love-song between us and Him.  So let's share it with the world as He called us to... to the ends of the earth.

If you haven't listened to June Hunt...do yourself a favor and be blessed by them

Links to Hope For the Heart's- June Hunt's most recent podcast series below:
The GIFT of FORGIVENESS

What Does it Mean to Forgive

The FREEDOM of Forgiveness


Forgiving When You Don't Feel Like It





Christmas Caroling for the Soul

Haute Bride Christmas Dinner at Aldo's on Tuesday December 20th.  I love these ladies (we call each other the sparkle mafia). So blessed to know them, work alongside them, and call them friends.  My boss Lindsie (third back on the left hand side) treated us to a beautiful dinner and surprised us with these GORGEOUS diamond necklaces!  I am still in shock.  What an incredible evening we had together.  The next day at work, I was gushing with my friend (also known as my coworker Ariana) about how lucky we are that we all love spending time together and have these friendships with each other.  If Lindsie read that I called her my boss she might cringe and it does feel a bit strange calling her that, even though she is a such a boss, but in the the best sense of the word.  She runs the show like nobodies business, but she is also a close friend and role model to all of us girls, so she feels more like family than anything.
Here are some pictures from the Christmas Caroling worship night we put together with a group of us at my sweet friend Sophie's home.  The scene was straight out of a Hallmark movie.  The literal fireplace behind us with real firewood was crackling and the tree was lit up like the brightest sparkler you can imagine; glistening in all its splendor.  We sat around the fire all cozy with hot coco, tea and blankets and sang about 20-25 Christmas songs, hymns and carols together; laughing and worshipping all the way through it all.  Sophie's parents so graciously made a HUGE pot of chili (the best I've ever had) for us to all enjoy afterwards and we sat around the dinner table together and blessed the meal.  We all stayed late and talked for a couple more hours. I ended up staying until after midnight to get some extra Sophie time and even extra guitar jam sesh time with her :) What a treat.  The whole night was beyond a treat.  God is so good.  It's so funny you never know what you are going to get but just be obedient and HE will do something extraordinary.  Beyond what you could ask, think or imagine.  I even got to spend the day with my step-dad after church, having a step-daddy/ daughter date at a bakery in Morgan Hill over tea and bread pudding. And then I went to Sophie's and cuddled up by the heater outside in the crisp winter's air and bundled up in blankies and had a "heart-pour-out-session." Much needed.  A long time coming. I literally cried when I first saw her and she hugged me for about five minutes.  That's how long it had been.  God knows just what we need.  We are hoping to plan a couple more of these worship nights in the New Year -- maybe at the Castle (the Willow Glen house).  I had some requests afterwards and we all had such a blast, so it is definitely on my heart and radar.  This is my jam and I'm sticking to it.  House worship nights.  Prayer appreciate for support in moving forward :) More to come...