The What and the How

I’ve been thinking a lot lately. More than normal for this introvert. I wanted to write weekly blog posts and have amazing updates on my life.

But, every blog post I wanted to write was going to come off sounding a bit crazy and bit political.  And I don’t like to engage in politics behind a screen. I’ve found that I have computer-courage. Similar to liquid courage,   it allows you to say and do things that you normally wouldn’t.  And, to be honest, neither of those types of courage ever got me anywhere.

I have struggled with coming to terms with the fact that I’m not supposed to be out in the world hustling to climb the corporate ladder. I was secretly hoping that God would have it in mind for me to go back to being an analyst, making 6 figures.  We could buy a nicer home, move to a better location, send Austin to college and Nick to private school.  I could buy my Subaru.  We could go on a family vacation that wasn’t in Minnesota. I was REALLY hoping.  But it’s clear to me, my husband, and my closest friends, that what God has for me is not about all those things.  And, in an effort to just be transparent and real, I feel like I must not keep those thinking things just in my head.  That I must put them out there.  I have to make some of these thoughts “real.”

If you don’t speak it, is it real?  If a tree falls in the woods, does it make a sound?
So, first things first: the job search.   Some of you care, some of you don’t.  But it is the most asked question that I get.  What am I doing?  I’m currently doing a few things.

1.  I’ve started to do some art. Well, art/design/building/creating with my youngest sister. She and I work together one day a week and then on our own during the rest of the week. We are playing with pallets, paints, canvas, sharpies, spray paint, thrift store finds, plants, candles, and anything else that inspires us.  We will be launching a website and “store” soon.  Our first public show is at Awaken Community Church (it’s a Covenant church in St. Paul that I just LOVE) from 12-3 on Sunday November 29 and December 6.  Come and see what we have been up to!

2. I’m also substitute teaching at New Life Academy. I know, crazy, right? I was excited to try “teaching” (and by teaching, I mean the absolute best parts of it without all of the hard work like lesson planning and tests and all the things that teachers do all day and night).  When I was younger, I would spend days playing teacher in the basement of our house. I loved chalkboards and handouts and teaching my sister all the things that I knew and that she NEEDED to learn. So, yes, I love subbing.  I’m working with the middle school and high school kids.  They are sassy and funny and full of dreams and fears.  I also just show up and do what the teacher has asked and then go home without any work coming with me.  It’s been almost 20 years since I had a job that didn’t come home with me.   ITS A CHRISTMAS MIRACLE and a pleasant surprise.

3. I’m still volunteering with non-profits that I love and I have joined a board.  I’m learning about housing and poverty and life skills, with Steps of Strategy. It’s something that keeps challenging me and I continue to learn how much I have to learn.  I love the people that I get to work alongside of and it’s a good reminder for me of how many amazing things I have in my life and that the quest for bigger and more sometimes means that I have less to give to others.  

4. I’m working on writing and developing a curriculum.  This one has been on the back burner, but it’s getting moved up because its one of the things that I know I need to be working on, but it’s easier to not.   It’s hard and requires me to put a whole lot of fear behind me so I can actually do the work.  

And then, the other question, how am I doing?

I’m doing well. I can see how God has planned this time for me and my family. I struggle with missing many people and organizations. I miss running large events and selling mugs. I miss the Christmas planning and preparing to be hospitable for hundreds of people.  And if I’m honest, I miss the hustle.  I know how to hustle. I know how to work hard and get approval and be a success. I’m pretty good at depending on myself to get things done.  What I don’t know how to do is wait and depend on others.

What I know is this: this season isn’t about the hundreds for me, its about a few.  Advent won’t be lost on me this season. I really don’t know what my career path looks like right now, but I’m doing well.  I do know that I’m a better wife, mom, and human being right now because I have margin and I am loving the flexibility in my week.   Jeremiah is providing for our family financially and it’s so great to see how God is using him.

I know the pace of my life and the work that God is doing in me doesn’t look like what I or others think it should look like.  But His best work never does. I’m thankful for this times and these unwritten pages.

P.S. If you’re looking for some amazing organizations that doing some of the hardest, in the trenches, work for those on the margins, check out these places:

1. Safe Families, MN 
2. Urban Ventures 
3. International Justice Mission





La Mesa

There are a team of people heading to Mexico with Serve His Kids this week. They will be staying at an orphanage, working alongside volunteers and kids, and learning some more about Jesus and why we GO.  One of the more powerful times during this mission trip (and other mission trips) is the time spent around a table.  It’s a powerful time for many reasons.  Sometimes, it’s because the experience of eating with children who don’t live with their parents makes you see your table differently. Sometimes, it’s because you pull up to the table to help a child with school work and you realize the gift of a public education.  And sometimes, it’s because you sit at the table and the simple small act of being together, being in community with others, fills a space in your heart.  The table is where many of us begin to meet Jesus.  Will you join me in praying for this team as they journey across the border and gather at a new table this week?

Also, I’m really excited to be a part of our Women’s Ministry event that is coming up, called The Table!  Now the men had BBQ at their men’s event in January; I heard it involved meat sweats and Jesus. The Table that I’m talking about, is more about women and less about meat sweats. The women who are coming to The Table all come from different places. We’re young, old-ish or somewhere in between. We’re introverts, extroverts, strong, mild, and many other adjectives.  We’re single, married, mamas, aunts, sisters, and best friends. Our stories ebb and flow in different parts. Some of us have walked through and weathered incredible storms, living to tell about struggle and the restoration. Some of us are in the middle of storms, needing  relief, both of the laughing and crying varities. While others of us are in the best seasons of our lives and want to share that joy and come alongside others who need us.

To register, click here 


We’ll see you this weekend!


Lisa Adams
Director of  Missions  

The Dwelling Place

As we are now in week 3 of our marriage series, I’m thinking about all of those people whose relationships are difficult, and painful and abusive. Domestic violence is something over 10 million children witness annually. 10 million children who are growing up to learn that abuse is synonymous with love. 10 million children who will grow up stuck in a cycle of abuse, being afraid of love, and/or becoming abusive themselves.

Domestic Violence is the leading cause of injury among women. That’s more than car accidents, rape, etc. In fact in the United States a women is beaten or assaulted every 9 seconds.  In the time it takes you to snap a selfie, a woman somewhere has been beaten. And every day in the United States, three or more women are murdered by husbands and boyfriends. In, Minnesota, in 2014 there were 23 documented deaths due to domestic violence.

And that’s just in the United States. Around the world, at least one in every three women has been beaten, coerced into sex or otherwise abused during her lifetime. Most often, the abuser is a member of her own family.

These statistics are heart breaking, and my intention in sharing them with you is two fold: 1. That we may remain aware that domestic violence takes many forms, and the people affected by it need our help and our prayers.

2. Our GOment in Woodbury this month is The Dwelling Place.   The Dwelling Place is a transitional shelter providing safe housing and structured programming for battered women and their children. Residents may stay 12-18 months to receive healing, and acquire the necessary skills to achieve independent housing, a sustaining income, and violence free lives.

Domestic violence impacts so many and as the Church, we want come alongside organizations that are trying to make a difference.  The mission of The Dwelling Place is to protect families and heal lives affected by domestic abuse by providing safe housing, Christ-centered programs, training in life skills, and community education.

Crossroads will be helping The Dwelling Place by donating gently used clothing, towels, bed linens and winter wear.  Stop by the table at the Adults counter each weekend to drop off your items and donations through the weekend of February 28/March 1.  There will also be resources about domestic violence and ways for you to volunteer if you are interested.

Also a quick update from last week: the Mexico Mission Trip meeting is now on the 21st of February. Details can be found here. 


Lisa Adams
Director of Missions 

What’s Love Got To Do With It?

Tina Turner was not the first person to ask this question. The answer is simple. Everything. Love has everything to do with “it.”  Love (or finding it) is the reason we do most things. It’s why we get married. It’s why we buy expensive bridesmaids dresses to be in those weddings. It’s why we’d die for a our children. It’s why we answer the phone at 3 am when our people need us. It’s also why we throw surprise parties, send “thinking of you cards,” celebrate the achievements, milestones and people.

Love is why we fly halfway around the world to help people we don’t know, and we hit our knees every day to stand in the gap for those who are hurting, who need answers, who desperately need to find joy and hope.

Love is the big deal, right? We want to love people well, and in the way they most need it. This spring, Crossroads has two missions trips coming up that happen to be in country (or right over over boarder)! If you’ve never been on a trip, or are feeling like now is the time to spread the love….now’s a great time!

In April International Justice Mission hosts the annual Global Prayer Gathering, in Washington DC. You’ll get to see first hand the work the IJM is doing all over the world. You’ll to talk with, worship with and pray for the people who are on the ground in the places that need love the most. It’s an incredible weekend. for details, click here.

In March, there will be another trip to the orphanage in Reynosa, Mexico.  There’s an informational meeting at the Washington County Library in Woodbury on February 14th. For more information, please contact Rick Ross (; 651-442-8314).

Last weekend, Justin and Trisha Davis kicked off our new series called “More than Words.” The marriage conference was amazing. There was such a buzz of positive energy all weekend. It’s awesome to see couples being passionate about their relationships and wanting to do the hard work to make them beyond ordinary. Thank you to all who volunteered and attended. I can’t wait to see what God does with this series in our relationships!

Excited to see what’s next!


Lisa Adams
Director of Missions 

‘Tis the Season to Go and Love

This week I had the pleasure of meeting with some of the local mission pastors and leaders in Woodbury and Cottage Grove. I love this group!  It’s diverse and cuts across denominations. It’s made up of people who are a lot like me as we all have this passion to see the church change the world. From our neighborhoods to the ends of the earth. We each have different ideas and dreams on how it gets done, but we all know that none of it gets done without Jesus. And you.

Each of us can be a part of Jesus’ plan to change the world. As we begin to prepare for the holiday season, many of us think about serving others. Most serving opportunities for Thanksgiving Day are already filled. So if you, like me, are just starting to think about how to serve this holiday season, here are some ways that you can serve right where you are.

  1.  Consider inviting someone to your Thanksgiving Dinner. Maybe there’s someone at work who just went through a divorce and will be alone on Thanksgiving. Maybe you know a college student who won’t be able to go home for Thanksgiving. Maybe you have a neighbor who has been widowed and alone and would love to sit with a family and enjoy a dinner.
  2. Consider being extra kind and generous. There are a lot of stores that are going to be open on Thanksgiving this year. Tipping your barista double what you normally do or offering to fill a strangers tank with gas are ways of expressing gratitude and kindness in tangible ways. Compliment a stranger. Let someone go ahead of you in line. Pay for the last minute whipped cream and rosemary for the person in front of you in line.
  3. Consider being extra thankful to the One who gave us our lives. Get up 30 minutes earlier than you think you should and take that time to pray and read the Bible. Start your thanksgiving with a heart of gratitude which is sure to carry you throughout your day.  Make a list of things that you are thankful for and thank God for each and every one.

Imagine what a difference it would make in our world if every Christian did these things on Thanksgiving (or any other day for that matter). Imagine a flood of prayer, thanksgiving, kindness, generosity and hospitality! What a day that would be.

May this Thanksgiving be one where your cup of gratitude overflows and may we each open a floodgate,


Lisa Adams
Director of Missions and Care 

Tags: Missions

Just One

There are times when I look at what’s going on in our world, from wars, to Ebola, to human trafficking, to poverty, and I get overwhelmed. Everything seems so big. My heart wants to do something, anything! But knowing where to even begin is daunting. How could, I, a single, white American 20-something, ever do anything to make a difference in this world? Who am I to make a difference?

The reality is that I won’t be able to stop violence against the poor, I won’t end poverty to an entire country of people. But, I can help. Even if it’s just one person.

A few months ago, I chose to sponsor a child through World Vision. Her name is Rachele, she will be 8 this Saturday, and she lives in the Congo with her parents and two younger siblings. Through my sponsorship of just one sweet little girl, her world and her family’s world is changed.  She gets to go to school, she has clean water to drink, and she has the opportunity for a better future. She will be able to grow up with the skills needed to be successful. She has the potential to be a leader in her family and in her village. The ripple effect of raising up a strong, healthy educated girl, could change an entire village and nation of people.

I believe that change comes from investing in people. Giving people the tools and resources they need to change their current situation is the way we can eradicate hunger, poverty and disease. I think that is what Jesus meant when he told us to love each other.

That’s why I believe in the work World Vision is doing, not just in the Congo, but all over the world. They are investing in children. They are keeping families together, making them stronger and healthier. They are bringing clean water to places who desperately need it. They are changing futures by investing in what is happening today.

And all of this is happening because of regular, ordinary people who decided to say “yes” to just one child.  Just one sponsorship can change the lives for a lot of people.

This weekend, Rich Stearns, president of World Vision, US, will be here to talk about the work World Vision is doing. The work that is being done because their hearts broke for people who need help. The work that being done because they take seriously Jesus’ call to love each other. It’s going to be an incredible weekend full of stories of restoration and change.  You will also have a chance to sponsor a child in the Congo!

Mark off the weekend of November 8th and 9th as the Cottage Grove and Woodbury campuses will be hosting over 30 organizations that will offer you a chance to do something during our annual Missions Fair.   The catalog is being released early this year (next weekend!) so that you and your family/small group/friends can meet up and decide which organization you want meet and talk with that weekend.  Eagan will be hosting their own Missions Fair and handing out the catalog this weekend.

This movement of Jesus like people doing Jesus like stuff needs you!  Where are you going to GO?


Lisa Adams
Director of Missions and Care


This week, as a staff, we gathered in small groups and studied Genesis. Its super refreshing to be able to create space in your day to talk about what we’ve been studying this week. My group spent a lot of time talking about how God created us to be creators, like Him. I love that God created us to be creative.

We create art, poetry, buildings, businesses, the list goes on and on. We are able to physically create something and make it beautiful. That’s pretty incredible in and of itself.

While we are not all wired to be architects or poets, we are all creators in our own right. We are creating a legacy with how we live our lives. We are creating a name for Jesus. We are showing the wold through our words and actions who Jesus is, and what love looks, sounds and feels like.

This past Monday, we hosted the Strengthening Families Roundtable and it was a huge success!  A special thanks to the organizations and the Crossroads families who were here to answer questions, and provide information. Also, a huge thank you for all who attended, and who are wrestling with the idea of what it looks like to create space in your home and heart for children who need to feel that love and support!

Finally, I just want to let you know that on October 5th after the 11:15 there will be an informational meeting about the Honduras mission trip that is set to go in January. If you’ve been wanting to get away from the Minnesota Winter, which I hear will be a doozey again this year, and have a heart for helping people, this maybe the trip for you!

We are all wired differently, yes, but we all created with the ability to create a world where love wins. A world where we love our neighbors across the world and across the street, where we fight against slavery, violence and poverty. We can create a world where there are no orphans, there is no hunger, and clean water for everyone. That’s the kind of creator I want to be.

Please join us the weekend as we dive deeper into Genesis and learn about how things were supposed to be, and how God has come to our rescue. It’s going to be a great weekend!


Lisa Adams,
Director of Missions and Care

Soaking Up the Sun

I’m getting ready to head out on vacation on Saturday and I honestly can’t wait!   I’ll be taking the next 2 weeks to relax, sit lakeside, read a book or 2, and spend extra time with my boys before school starts.   This summer is coming to an end and I want to make sure that I take some time to soak up the sun before we are watching the twinkling of the snow.

Last weekend, A Touch of Home had their annual fundraiser and they raised over $2,000!  That money will be used to ship boxes to our trips over the next year. Thank you for being hungry!!  Their next packing opportunity is on Saturday, September 13th at 9:30am at our Woodbury campus. They would love to have you join them.

This weekend we are in part 3of our 4 part series, Pursued.  The story this weekend comes from the staff member who is usually behind the camera, but this weekend, she shares a bit about her story of adoption.  Michelle is also responsible for connecting me to the young mom who lived with us for a brief time last year and, for that, I am so grateful. Our family was able to get to know and grow to love a young woman who was pregnant and help her transition into motherhood.  One of the biggest blessings from the last year for our family!   Michelle is fantastic and I’m glad you all will get to see that!

One last thing, I want to say THANK YOU to those of you who filled out the missions survey this past month!   Over 130 of you filled it out!   Now we begin the process of reading, analyzing, and putting the results in some sort of organized way of looking at it. For those of you who left email addresses, we plan on following up with you soon!


Lisa Adams
Director of Missions and Care 

Some next steps:

  • On the evening of September 15th we are hosting a Strengthening Families Roundtable at the Woodbury campus at 6:30pm.  It will be an evening to discuss adoption and foster care. Information will be shared regarding domestic and foreign adoption, foster care, foster-care-to-adoption, and ways that we can help families in crisis. You can register HERE.
  •  The monthly GOment is a diaper drive that is benefiting Safe Families. Safe Families seeks to prevent abuse and neglect and come alongside parents in crisis by placing children in volunteer homes temporarily. Through a network of host families including singles, empty nesters, families with kids in the home, and even families with both parents working. Kids are being kept safe and being deflected from the foster care system. Meanwhile their parents are given tools and support to restore stability in their lives and ultimately are reunited with their children. We will be collecting diapers throughout the month of AUGUST to show our support to the families who are demonstrating hospitality and love by helping children and their families in crisis.  Diapers that are new and unopened will be accepted at the Woodbury and Cottage Grove campuses. Sizes 3 -5 are the most needed.
  •  Serve His Kids  has set the dates for their fall trip to the orphanage in Reynosa, Mexico. The trip will run from Saturday October 11 to the 18th. There are two informational meetings at the Washington County Library in Woodbury. Saturday August 16th from 10:00 AM to noon and Saturday September 27th from 10:00 AM to noon. The team will serve and share God’s love with the kids at the Pilar Orphanage in Reynosa, Mexico!  Kids, education, sports, crafts, work project and more ministries.  For more information contact Rick Ross –; 651-442-8314.


One year ago today, I was in Africa for the first time.  I say first, because it won’t be the last!  It was my first international mission trip and the first time I led a mission trip.  I find it exciting to just get everything out of the way all at once.  I’m brave like that.

Actually, brave was the last thing I was.  I was terrified to be away from my family and my life in Cottage Grove.  I was sure I was going to do something as the leader that would tick everyone off. I thought I would offend the people of Uganda by doing something stupid.  Fear, insecurity and generally thinking too much about myself almost had me talked out of going on this life changing trip. Thankfully, God is bigger than my junk and He continued to show me that I was supposed to go.

I hear from people all the time that they feel like they are supposed to do something, but they don’t know what. That they want to go on a trip, but they don’t feel qualified. They want to serve and volunteer, but just don’t have the time. Or know where to start.

Maybe that’s you.  And if it is, I want to encourage you.  I want to tell you that for every question, concern, or hurdle placed in front of you, God still wants you.  In fact, he wants nothing more than for you to love Him and others.

And if you are still feeling unqualified or unsure, let me tell you about some Bible passages that came alive to me in a new way while I was in Africa. I want to remind you of a man named Moses. I know you remember him floating down the Nile in a basket, telling Pharaoh about the plagues, and the small thing of parting the Red Sea. But I want you to remember that time that he heard God’s voice coming from a burning bush.

Here are some of Moses’ responses:

×           Exodus 3:11 “Who am I to appear before Pharaoh?”

×           Exodus 3:13 “Then what should I tell them?”

×           Exodus 4:1 “What if they won’t believe me or listen to me?”

×           Exodus 4:10  “O Lord, I’m not very good with words.”

×           Exodus 4:13 “Lord, please! Send anyone else.”

It’s a burning bush.   And God is actually speaking to him.  And Moses is disqualifying himself at every turn.  How often do you respond like Moses?   How often do you question how God made you and what He wants you to do?   While it might take some convincing, the most amazing things happen when you do what God asks you to do.

So let’s go be brave.  Let’s learn from Moses and get going on the mission that God has called us to!  If you have no idea where to start, let’s get coffee and talk about what sea you need to part.


Lisa Adams
Director of Missions and Care 


One of the things that I love about working at Crossroads is the way that our staff strengthen and challenge me.  I don’t know if any of you are introverts, but my guess is that some of you might be. And if you are, you know how terrifying and exhausting something like this is:

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Getting up on stage and acting silly is super hard for this introvert!  But getting to laugh until your cheeks hurt is simply one of my favorite things.  We got to take something funny (and challenging for some of us) and turn it into something that reminded each us that we need to shoot for remarkable performances that leave people with wanting an encore.  Our work and what we do needs to be done with excellence and passion.

One of our staff did just that this past weekend.  Pastor Tina led a group of families on a mission trip to Growing Hope Farm in Wisconsin. I usually take this time to tell you about what they did or why we serve there, but this blog post, I want to share something different.   One of the men who work on the farm spent a lot of time with the families over the weekend and asked Tina this question:  “Are you all related?” Pastor Tina laughed and told him that they were not…it was a group of individual families from Crossroads that were serving together!  The group just went to church together.  He was surprised by her response and then said “ You can usually tell when you have groups of people who aren’t related and who are related.The families act like your group. Kind and helping each other.”

And I think that’s exactly what Jesus wants people to see in those of us who love and serve Him.   Not only a performance worthy of an encore, but a performance where we are known by our love.


Lisa Adams
Director of Missions and Care 

“By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” John 13:35

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