Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Kids and the Bible

My children, who are elementary school aged have, of course, never read the whole Bible.  For one, without a LOT of help they wouldn't understand the wording in most of it or what was going on.

While at the book store one day I found a Bible that had the title Extreme Teen on the front.  I opened it up and found that while the parts of the Bible are in there, it actually explains things as it goes in a way that a teen would understand.  I believe that my kids will be able to understand this too as they are older elementary school aged kids, or I am hoping so anyway.  I am hoping that if a part is confusing that my 20+ years of the Bible would be able to help them too, although I don't know ALL about it either, but I do know how they learn things.

I've had this Bible sitting here for a year now on my bookshelf and probably only cracked it open twice.
I have decided that as of October 1st I am going to start reading this to them, hopefully a little each night.  My hopes are that in less than one year we will be completed with this task and my kids will be able to say that they have at least 'heard' the Bible all the way through.

What brought this on?
Well, I turn 30 this year, in a couple days actually.  Not too long after my children were born we had them baptized.  In that ceremony you and the family you choose promise to help guide your children down a life of faith, belief and love.  You also promise to teach them the Word.  Although my kids know some stories that are taught, like Noah, and Jonah, and others, it's still not ALL the Bible.  I want them to have that knowledge, and it's about time I give it to them.  Here's to a new decade in my life and hopefully a new learning in theirs.

Wish us luck!

Proverbs - Chapter 4; Verses 4, 5 & 13


he taught me and said, Lay hold of my words with all your heart; keep my commands and you will live.
Get wisdom, get understanding; do not forget my words or swerve from them.
Hold on to instruction, do not let it go; guard it well, for it is your life.


Proverbs - Chapter 6; Verse 23


For these commands and this teaching are a lamp to light the way ahead of you. The correction of discipline is the way of life.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Casondra

I just wanted to say:


Casondra, we miss you!

Can't wait to see you back on here! Thinking about you and praying for you girl!

Friday, September 24, 2010

"Tears of the Saints" - by Leeland

I was in a friend's car today and she has this posted on her dash:
Life is too short to wake up with regrets. So love the people who treat you right.Pray for the ones who don't. Believe everything happens for a reason. If you get a second chance, grab it with both hands. If it changes your life, let it. God never said life would be easy. He just promised it would be worth it.

I thought that summed up a lot of what is expected of us in this life. I struggle to love those who anger me, slight me, or do wrong by me, and so I would add into this passage that I should also love those who don't treat me right. I love this song by Leeland! As with most of their songs, it puts me in the place I should be, and in the right frame of mind to do my best in honoring God and showing His love to others.....


Thursday, September 23, 2010

clean up

this morning i have spent approximately an hour cleaning out one (1!) of my email inboxes

i'm one of those people that's really bad about hanging onto emails that don't necessarily matter anymore.  blog comments and replies from months ago.  dusty receipts, photos that have long been on my hard drive, nutrition secrets that i should probably just READ and apply instead of letting them sit there.

and so, the email cleanup has taken awhile.

and as usual, i begin wondering what other dusty corners of my life need a little clean up.
how about that resentment from an offense that was slighter than i remember?
and the envy i felt for those moving forward in the life path i thought *i* was supposed to be walking?
and those moments when i wondered if i could even make it another step.

i am happy to say that i had a little "clean-up" of those life things a couple of months ago when i went on an encounter weekend 
(and had a little revelation about my life in general as a result)
and let's face it -- through the events of the past few months there have been MANY opportunities to grow in that way.  deaths of those close to you, foreclosures, cars being totaled...those things will knock you off your feet if you're not grounded.

but today, if nothing else
has served to remind me that cleaning up my life and heart can't be saved for just those special occasions
it's a constant, organic thing that needs to keep happening

and just as i resolve now (in black and white!) to keep my inbox tidier
i resolve as well to recognize those areas in my life, heart and attitude
that need to be immediately deleted or filed appropriately

join me?
:-)

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

A Simple Gesture

I came across this story a little bit ago, and thought it was too good to pass up sharing with you all!

A Simple Gesture
By: Sharon Jaynes

 
Today's Truth:

"But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called Today…" (Hebrews 3:13 NIV) 
Friend To Friend:

My husband, Steve, was pumping gas. It seemed like he was always pumping gas. Living out in the country and driving into town each day required gas, and a lot of it. As he stood holding the nozzle and watching the numbers rapidly roll by higher and higher, he noticed an old 1992 grey Honda Civic pull up to the pump behind him. The car had seen better days: rusted roof, missing hubcaps, faded paint, and dented bumper. 


Out of the corner of his eye, he observed a young woman who appeared to be in her late 20's get out of the car. She was dressed in medical scrubs and looked about as tired as her Civic. Methodically, she swiped her card, placed the nozzle in the tank, and squeezed the handle. Within one minute of beginning, she stopped squeezing. She then placed the nozzle back in the pump and began screwing the cap back on her tank. 


That couldn't have been more than a couple of gallons, Steve thought. 


"Is that all the gas you're getting?" Steve asked. 


"Yeah, well, you know. Trying to space it out," she replied. 


Steve placed his nozzle back on in its holder, walked over to her pump, and swiped his card. "Let's fill it up today." 


"No, no. You can't do that," she protested. 


"I already did," he smiled. "It's already done. See. The card's approved. Fill it up." 


"Tears welled up in her eyes. "Thank you," she said. 


"Now you have a good day," he replied. "God bless." And off he drove. 


I just love that man. 


As I thought about Steve's act of kindness, I was challenged to pay closer attention to those around me throughout my busy days. I was stirred to look for someone who needed a kind word, a bill paid, a burden carried. 


Throughout Jesus' thirty-three years he walked this earth, he noticed people who crossed his path during his busy day. He noticed a small man in a tree straining to catch a glimpse as he passed by (Luke 19:1-8). He noticed a woman with a bent-over back sitting in the women's section of the synagogue straining to hear (Luke 13). He noticed a 38-year-old lame man sitting by a pool (John 5). He noticed a grieving mother mourning the loss of her only son (Luke 7). He noticed the hunger of the crowd after a long day of teaching on the hillside (Mark 6). He noticed … and he did something about it. 


It is very easy to go about our busy days with blinders on - focusing on our own little worlds and ignoring the ministry opportunities surrounding us. But Jesus showed us how to pay attention, lighten a load, bestow a blessing, give a gift, help the hurting, and bind-up the broken. Listen, Jesus was busy! He had a lot to accomplish in 3.5 years of his earthly ministry. But he was never too busy to pay attention to the needs of the people around him. 


Steve was my hero that day. And I suspect, for one young lady in a beat-up, old gray Honda Civic, he was her hero as well. 


Let's Pray:

Dear LORD, open my eyes today. Forgive me for being so selfish that I forget to notice the needs all around me. Show me someone that I can help today. Show me how I can be Your hands and feet today. I'm listening. I'm watching. I'm paying attention. 
In Jesus' Name,
Amen.


Monday, September 20, 2010

My Struggle

I have been going through a personal struggle lately with my relationship with the LORD. I have been waiting and wanting to feel his warm. Last night while trying to fall asleep I had this overwhelming urge to pray. I prayed for a long time. I prayed for all of my friends that are going through tough times and my own personal struggle. While doing so I felt this overwhelming warmth. I felt the Lords undying love. I felt his touch it was AMAZING. At that moment I knew he was there. I knew what I had always known. That the Lord loves me. I am his child and he is my father. It was an amazing experience and I can not wait to see him one day and feel his touch everyday of my life.
While writing this I opened up my bible and this is where the Lord led me.
Proverbs 11:2 When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with humility comes wisdom.

God is GOOD!

Surrender

I don't know where to even begin this post...I just feel like I need to write this.

I haven't been to church in 6+ months. It's SO easy to fall out of the pattern of doing the right things, the feel good things, the things good for your soul and getting back into bad habits. For this I am not proud of. I guess it all started when my little Kainan was sick one weekend. And then it snowballed from there. EXCUSE=My husband was working, EXCUSE=I was tired, EXCUSE=too many "Christians" doing and saying things that I felt was hypocritical. We received cards and phone calls and postcards saying that we were missed. People that I didn't even know were calling me. But I felt it was all too much. That they were just trying to get me back in church!! I mean, who do they think they are!! Whoa!! Vanessa, LISTEN TO YOURSELF!!! What is so wrong with them wanting you in church?!?! Now, don't get me wrong, I absolutely consider myself to be a Christian. As a friend of mine stated today, I am Christian who hasn't fully surrendered to God. I KNOW I need to completely surrender to Him! I WANT to completely surrender to him. But I'm scared! Scared of what will happen if I do. (Even though I know that He only wants the best for me!) I guess partly because my husband has "issues" with God. He and his ex wife were married for 12 years. They have two beautiful daughters together. They went to church every Sunday...morning and evening service. Attended Wednesday evenings. They loved being part of a church family. Then, he joined the ARMY...and served a year in Iraq. During that time, his wife was unfaithful to him. And while he was still deployed in Iraq, she told him. Everything! Details and all! And he prayed about it...and prayed about it. (Of course, this is his side of the story, as we all know, there are two sides to every story.) He wanted to know why. Why God would let this happen to him. Why God would ALLOW for his wife to do the things she had. And to this day, it's hard for him to go to church. He doesn't want to be there. He goes because I want him there. I just keep hoping that someday The Lord will smack him with a dose of what he needs to hear and change things. [of course, we have to be in church for that to happen!, I know, stupid me, right!!] I have tried to give my husband explanation for the things that happened...prior to our meeting. I don't need to know WHY they happened, I just know that they did and that it was in God's plan for it to happen. Had it not, he and I wouldn't be married. Had we not gotten married, we wouldn't have a beautiful two year old, rotten to the core, but smarter every day son. {I'm proud, can you tell??}

Anyway, that is part of the reason that I've gone astray. And I do miss church every Sunday...not miss as in not attend, but miss as in my heart feels the burden and weight of not being there. I am not one that believes you have to sit in church on Sunday morning to consider yourself a Christian....but when my heartstrings are being tugged...I cannot ignore that!! Please say a quick prayer that my husband find the love for The Lord that he used to have!! [A HUGE thank you in advance!!!]

And to end this post...a great song that gets me to the alter every time we sing it...this song motivates me to be the Christian that I am not but that I want to be.

A different perspective

The Mayonnaise Jar

I received an email today, and I shared it over on my blog.  It moved me to tear.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Voice Of Truth

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Enough

I have a problem... And I'm sure a lot of you have the same problem... I always feel the need to do more, to do better, to be better, to be more to more people, etc... You get the point... I drive myself crazy feeling this way b/c I never feel like I'm enough. There isn't enough of me to go around... to get everything done that I think needs to be done (in the way I think it needs done especially). I am a bit of a control freak... yes, that's a problem all in itself... but it leads me to always feel like what I'm doing or who I am isn't enough. I could be better and do better at pretty much everything... or at least that is what the world tells me and what I let myself believe. I was refreshed today to read THIS devotional. I hope it inspires someone else to feel like you are enough in the Lord's eyes just as you are. I hope to remind myself of this the next time I'm feeling like I need to do something more than just be who I am.

Stellar Kart

One of my fave songs by a Christian rock group I love.  This is the type of music they play in the church we attend.  It's one of the reasons I love where we go to church; keeps everyone pumped up for Jesus!



Shattered = The Ability to Shine More Brilliantly

"Shattered glass is full of a thousand different angles, each one able to pick up a ray of light and shoot it off in a thousand directions. That doesn't happen with plain glass, such as a jar. The glass must be broken into many pieces.

What's true of shattered glass is true of a broken life. Shattered dreams. A heart full of fissures. Hopes that are splintered. A life in pieces that appears to be ruined. But given time and prayer, such a person's life can shine more brightly than if the brokenness had never happened. When the light of the Lord Jesus falls upon a shattered life, that believer's hopes can be brightened.

Only our great God can reach down into what otherwise would be brokeness and produce something beautiful. With him, nothing is wasted. Every broken dream and heart that hurts can be redeemed by his loving, warm touch. Your life may be shattered by sorrow, pain, or sin, but God has in mind a kaleidoscope through which his light can shine more brilliantly."

Monday, September 13, 2010

Forgiving Fast and Completely

Today I made a very good friend aggravated with me. She attempted to let out her frustrations to her husband via text message. Unfortunately she accidentally send the text to ME!

I learned a long time ago to forgive fast and completely. This message is sent home to my heart each time I pray to my God asking for forgiveness of my sins and for sending His Son to die for me.

Forgive fast and completely as God does to you. Don't let anger eat away at you and Satan take control!

Book Club and Giveaway

As part of the community blog we have decided to do a monthly book club.

Our first book will be Delta Belles.  While trying to decide what book we wanted to start off with, I went to the ReStore here in my town.  If you aren't familiar with ReStore, all proceeds from the donations go to Habitat for Humanity.  Habitat for Humanity just so happens to be building a home a few blocks from our house right now.

I found enough copies of this particular book at the ReStore store that I was able to purchase one for every person in our book club, plus one for the Book Giveaway.  If you are interested in following along with our discussions (we will be doing this weekly over a set number of chapters)...please leave a comment.  We will be selecting one commenter to receive a free copy of the book.  I will announce the winner and how to contact us so that we can get the winner their copy.

Hope you all had a blessed week-end!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Prayer Requests

I know we have the prayer request gadget, but since I have so many requests, I figured it would save time and space to add them all here. These requests have all come out of a MOPS meeting I attended yesterday.

Autumn, 18, was thrown from a horse and is in a coma, for going on two weeks. The doctors are comparing this to shaken baby syndrome.

Brenda, is going to be having surgery to have a kidney removed.

Sarah, is pregnant and is having many concerns and issues.

Elizabeth, 2, has DiGeorge syndrome. Elizabeth cannot speak. Doctors will be doing surgery soon that should give her the ability to speak.

Thank you prayer partners!!!!!!!!

Branching post from Random acts of Kindness

I was trying to emphasize the importance of eating what I make for dinner to Camden {the picky eater} the other night. and for her to please do it without pitching a fit over what it was...so I tried to tell her that there are homeless people living right here in our community. not just in "other" places. and not just in 3rd world countries. and children are hungry and homeless too, not just adults....etc, etc...immediately her heart was aching for those that are hungry and without shelter. she wants to do something...i have yet to decide if i want to donate to a food bank or take it even further and see about getting her into a volunteer program somewhere with me. any feedback on this is greatly appreciated! i don't even know if there is a volunteer program that would allow a 9 year old to participate.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Happy

Today I had a wonderful day! I got to spend it in a couple of different special education preschool classrooms. All the stress of schoolwork and teaching and schedules just melted away when I got my first hug. I am constantly amazed by how accepting children are, I mean here I was, a complete stranger. and they immediately gave hugs, asked for help, held hands, and asked me to play.

These kids all have problems they are facing, and yet they are as happy go lucky as kids without disabilities. I think I'm going to learn a lot over the next 10 weeks! :-)

I want so very much to be as happy as them, and not focus as much on the negative areas of my life....how about you?

Random acts of Kindness

This is one AMAZING story that started all from a random act of kindness.



One Random Act of Kindness Turned $93 Into $100,000!

On Aug. 11, one year after the two strangers met and had a kind exchange, they raised more than $100,000 for the food bank though their Facebook group, the 93 Dollar Club!
Let's say you were at Trader Joe's Menlo Park, Calif., and you saw a woman standing at the checkout counter who couldn't find her wallet. Would you pick up the tab? Well, that's what Carolee Hazard did last summer. When she saw that Jenni Ware wasn't able to pay the bill because her wallet was missing, a knee-jerk reaction inspired her to hand over $207, the exact amount Ware needed for her groceries. The next day, Hazard received a check for $300 in the mail and a thank you card from Ware suggesting that she use the extra $93 dollars to get a massage.
Uncomfortable with keeping the money, Hazard asked her Facebook friends what they'd do. Several suggested giving it to charity, which Carolee liked a lot, and she decided to match the money with $93 of her own. Again, she turned to her Facebook friends asking to whom should she donate the $186. Given the food connection, she decided to donate the money to her local Second Harvest Food Bank. To her great surprise, a friend added another $93. So did another and another and another! Soon the story was being posted and reposted on Facebook, inspiring others to donated as well. Thus was born the 93 Dollar Club.
"If I hadn't turned to Facebook, this never would have happened. I am just along for the ride as opposed to steering this. The 93 Dollar Club really has an energy all of its own," Hazard said. "No one has been asked to donate. People stepped forward asking to participate ... to make a difference. And whether it was in the amount of $9.30 from a single mother who works full-time with little extra cash to spare or a young child making a 93 cent donation from their allowance, everyone has been able to play a part." In just one year, the 93 Dollar Club has collected a whopping $100,000.
What's next? Her hope is to double the amount and raise $200,000. Hazard said, "I have great faith that people's desire for helping the hungry and passing on goodness will enable us to reach our goal. That amount will provide 400,000 meals or enough to feed 100 families of four for a year. I like folks to know that a little goes a long way at Second Harvest!"
To follow the 93 Dollar Club as they work toward their $200,000 goal or to participate, clickhere.

anger

i heard a former President speak tonight
and while it was at a political rally
(and i'm totally not going to get into that!)
he made some pretty interesting points

the one that stuck out to me the most was when he said

"let's take politics out of the equation for a moment
and just talk about life.
if you look back to times in your life where you have been angry
and you make a decision based out of that anger
when you come out of that moment and look back on the decision
9 times out of 10 you regret the decision you made."

hmmmm.
i don't care who you are, there's truth in that statement.

so my encouragement (and his) for you today is

own your anger
don't be afraid of it
but then...well, get over it
rise above it
make your decisions from a higher place

and everyone around you will benefit from that

Do not teach your children never to be angry; teach them how to be angry.
~Lyman Abbott

If you're angry at a loved one, hug that person. And mean it. You may not want to hug - which is all the more reason to do so. It's hard to stay angry when someone shows they love you, and that's precisely what happens when we hug each other.
~Walter Anderson

Not the fastest horse can catch a word spoken in anger.
~Chinese Proverb
If you kick a stone in anger, you'll hurt your own foot.
~Korean Proverb


this all seems rather simplistic, doesn't it?
and not at all easy in practice at times

but i'm constantly thinking
that my anger does nothing to change the situation (in most cases)
it only changes me
even if it's for fleeting moments
it changes me

sometimes that's not necessarily a bad thing
but dwelling in the midst of it?
THAT would be bad.

and so...rise above
own it, and get over it
simplistic...but so important


Status

Cute status I saw on Facebook today...
When it all comes down to nothing - God is up to something.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

My challenge for you



We are all beautiful the way we are!!! Follow along here and get inspired!!!  I want to challenge all of you to write out the scripture that is speaking to you this week, and put it somewhere where some one you don't know will find it...it may just be the message that turns their life around.  I'd like to do something similar to the operation beautiful challenge, and take pictures of your scriptures, and write a small paragraph about why you chose to put it where you did.

Evidences

I wrote the following entry for my personal blog, but thought this would be a great place to share it as well.

It's funny how God puts things in your life at certain times that make you step back and think..there is NO way that was all just by coincidence. And He does it to teach us lessons, I'm sure of it.

A few weeks ago a good friend of mine posted a status update about living paycheck-to-paycheck, and how hard it is.  I responded by saying, that despite the road we face, I feel blessed in that we live so comfortably. And that I would pray for her. She responded with something to the effect of that she was in no way comparing her situation to mine, because they don't compare and looking at my situation is makes her feel like she is just complaining.  And that she felt bad that with everything I am going through that I wanted to pray for her. 

Don't feel bad, friend.  We are all in this together!

I think as human beings we tend to categorize tragedy into levels of what is worse.  The truth is every one is fighting their own battles. When I say battles...I mean REAL battles...not every day mundane things like your kids are driving your crazy!  Life leaves each and every one of us scarred...just in different ways. I have friends who have lost their children, and to me, that is so much than facing cancer.  I may have cancer, but I also have a HUGE support system.  I can't imagine the stress of having to choose between paying my bills or feeding my children. 

I look around and see so much suffering and it just breaks my heart.  I can barely manage to watch the news and see all the bad in the world around us.  I saw a video the other day of this babysitter repeatedly hitting and throwing things at the tiny baby, and it just made me sick.  It makes me think about all the parents and babies that things like that happen to because they aren't in a financial situation for one of the parents to stay home.  And then I get angry when I hear/see stay-at-home parents complaining about how crazy their kids make them, or all the things they do for their kids that 'stress' them out and how horrible their lives are.   And it seems anymore half of what you read on Facebook status's or blogs is just that.  It just makes me want to say, "If your kid destroying your house is your complaint in life...you need to open your eyes to those around you who actually have problems.  And be THANKFUL you aren't in their shoes."  But I don't say those things...not normally anyways. And when I do, I spend a tremendous amount of time in prayer, asking God to help me not be so judgmental, and to have the will power to turn to him in prayer for these people instead of voicing my own opinions.

Early I was reading one of my new favorite blogs...I just think this woman is a wonderful mother, and woman of God.  In paragraph she wrote the following and it just spoke volumes to me...

Sometimes our statuses are the only things people see of our life. The only glimpse they get into our thoughts, philosophies and beliefs... what message are you sending? complaining? or contentment? Faith ? Or constant frustration?


How true is that?  

What message do you portray to the people you come in contact with...be it in person or via web? 

My dad went to a funeral a few weeks back and he shared how the Pastor spoke of all the evidences in this woman's life.  Then the Preacher told the funeral goers to make sure they leave as much evidence behind as they can so that your loved ones have no questions as to where you are going.

So, I ask you today, what evidences are you showing?

Awesome God

Once a month I volunteer for a faith-based, medical clinic. This clinic has served 805 patients with 294 who have sought ministry in our prayer room. 519 have submitted prayer requests. The all volunteer staff has returned $104,506.00 worth of services to the community since we opened the doors September 10, 2009. I am blessed {& proud!} to be part of such a wonderful organization that provides these free services to those that have no medical insurance.

Each night, we dedicate time for devotional. I want to share a story that was shared with our staff during one of those devotionals. Now-I may not have all of the specifics just right...but you'll get the picture.

The church of the man telling the story has a ministry that they call The Treasure Hunters. The Treasure Hunters are a group of Christians that listen to what they feel God is telling them.
One night, God spoke 3 things to them.

1. Soccer Ball
2. Red Jeep
3. Divorce

They weren't entirely sure what any of these things meant, so they hopped into their cars and started driving into and through town. Nothing called out to them. They proceeded to the next town over. Again, nothing. With the strong feeling of having to find what God was trying to tell them, they tried one more town. It was in this town that they spotted a red jeep at a gas station. On that back window of that red jeep was a school soccer decal. Knowing this MUST be what God was leading them to, they went inside the gas station. Upon asking the cashier about the owner of the red jeep, they see a man in the corner. The owner. They approached the man and speak to him. They realize that the man attended their church years ago and no longer attends. The man tells them, my wife is leaving me. I don't know what to do. I haven't spoke to God in a long time. This morning I asked God to send help....................................... I was going to commit suicide tonight.

Each time I hear this story, tell this story, think about this story, I realize just how AWESOME God is!!! He heard this man's plea and sent him help!

I'm sure we all know this song...but you can't hear this song too much. Great song!

Prayer Request Box

Hi everyone!

I know this is an inspirational blog so Casondra wanted to added a prayer request box to the sidebar.  I thought it was a GREAT idea.  Anyone should be able to post on it even if they aren't a friend/follower, or you can request for someone else.  It will probably show up as unknown if they aren't our friend/follower though, which is perfectly OK too.  It's about all of us praying as 'prayer warriors'.  That doesn't mean that we have to automatically have a name or complete specifics to do that.

I did want to say that it has a time lapse on it though in order to go through the system.  It may take a few minutes for your request to actually show up in the box, same with replies.  We tested it tonight and I had one that took upwards of 5 minutes.  So don't think it's broken, it's working, just takes patience.  If we start having them take 15 or more minutes and it still doesn't show up AFTER you refresh your browser, let me know.

Also added some 'buttons' that you can put on your personal blogs/websites to show your support of this blog and to pass us around with.

If anyone has any other problems or has any questions about anything, let me know.  I do my best to answer or find an answer to whatever the problem is.  Be patient though, I get busy certain days with all I do.

Hope you enjoy!

Back to your regularly scheduled inspiration!  :)

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Just one person

I found this quote and had to share...

Feed your faith and your fears will starve to death. ~Author Unknown

So often, we {unless I'm the only one} let our fears take over, we stumble and sometimes, even fall. It is sometimes difficult to be encouraged when it might just be easier to fall.

But God is always there to help us. To take our hand and give us direction. And to show us the way. It never fails that He is there for us. I am amazed that He never gives up on me. He always cares. He is always there. God loves us unconditionally.

I love this song by Casting Crowns...I"m just one person, yet The Lord loves me so much.

love them anyway

one of my favorites from one of my favorites :)

people are often unreasonable, irrational, and self-centered.
forgive them anyway.

if you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives.
be kind anyway.

if you are successful, you will win some unfaithful friends and some genuine enemies.
succeed anyway.

if you are honest and sincere people may deceive you.
be honest and sincere anyway.

what you spend years creating, others could destroy overnight.
create anyway.

if you find serenity and happiness, some may be jealous.
be happy anyway.

the good you do today, will often be forgotten.
do good anyway.

give the best you have, and it will never be enough.
give your best anyway.
in the final analysis, it is between you and God. it was never between you and them anyway.

- mother teresa

10 Most Important Things

In my life, I try to live by these '10 most important things'.  I have to admit that some days it is hard for some of these to be at the forefront of my thinking.  Some things in life will test my patience, my faith and my very well-being.  When I am being tested in that sense, I am probably not the best person/friend/mother/wife that I could be.  
No matter what is going on in your life, remember the '10 most important things'.



  • LOVE:
    The Special Feeling That Makes You Feel All Warm And Wonderful.

  • RESPECT:
    Treating Others As Well As You Would Like To Be Treated.

  • APPRECIATION:
    To Be Grateful For All The Good Things Life Has To Offer.

  • HAPPINESS:
    The Full Enjoyment Of Each Moment. A Smiling Face.

  • FORGIVENESS:
    The Ability To Let Things Be Without Anger.

  • SHARING:
    The Joy Of Giving Without Thought Of Receiving.

  • HONESTY:
    The Quality Of Always Telling The Truth.

  • INTEGRITY:
    The Purity Of Doing What's Right, No Matter What.

  • COMPASSION:
    The Essence Of Feeling Another's Pain, While Easing Their Hurt.

  • PEACE:
    The Reward For Living The 10 Most Important Things.


  • Author Unknown

    Saturday, September 4, 2010

    Psalm 139:13-16

    I have many fears for my children as a mother. And it is during those difficult times that my faith is tested. I love my children more than anything on this earth. As I'm sure, all mothers do.

    A few weeks ago, Kainan was sick. He had a high fever that I just couldn't get to come down, no matter what I did. The tests at the emergency department showed his white blood count was high. Double what it should have been.

    During the time that all of the tests were being done (Doesn't it seem like an eternity before getting results for these things!?!?!) is when I was at my weakest in my faith. I wondered if God was going to make me sit back and watch as my child fought some sort of hideous illness or disease.

    I KNEW that God wasn't going to give me more than He knew I could handle. (My understanding of what I can handle & His knowing of what I can handle, never seem to be on the same level!) But I was terrified. A dear friend sent me this scripture.


    For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.
    (Psalm 139:13-16).

    Reading this calmed me. REMINDED me. That as much as I love my children, God loves them MORE THAN I DO...so much more than I can ever imagine. He doesn't want to see them hurt or sick any more than I do.

    About the authors

    Friends are angels who lift our feet when our own wings have trouble remembering how to fly!

    I wanted to post a little about each of the contributing authors.





    Amanda.  She has been married to Brandon for 10 years now, and they have three beautiful kids.  Currently prayer needs are Brandon interviewed for an underground job with the coal mine, and has got the job...he just needs to decide if he actually wants to take it.  Prayer warriors lets lift them up!



    Cassie. She is married to Adam and they have two kids.  A daughter and a son.  They recently moved and Cassie is working on her doctorate.  GO CASSIE!!!  :)  



    Chelsa. She is married to Ryan, and you can tell by her picture that they have two very handsome little boys.  They also have A who is in Heaven with Jesus.  Chelsa's strength and love for the Lord amazes me.  They are currently in the process of building their 'dream' home, so please keep them in your prayers.


    Kate.  Kate has a loving fiance who we call D, and one adorable little guy named Oliver.  Kate has a passion for life unlike anyone I've ever seen.  She's traveled the world, literally, to help the less fortunate.  She rivals me in her love for cooking.  At the ripe age of 26, she inspires me to life live to the fullest.



    Lora.  Lora has a loving boyfriend named Anthony, and she currently resides in one of the most fun cities in the country.  Lora has been through the ringer the past few years, but still has a zest for the Lord that leaves those around her wanting to get to know Him more.  


    This would be me and my little...um, well large, family.  Chris and I have four small children.  Our youngest, B, was born with D-Transposition, an ASD, VSD, and incomplete atrioventricular canal.  She has surgery at 16 days old, but if you saw her today and didn't know her story, you'd never suspect anything was ever wrong with her.  I was recently diagnosed with BC, and will soon be undergoing a bi-lateral mastectomy.  God has carried us through every second of the past three years of our lives and I know without a doubt He will continue to do so as we face this journey.



    Starla.  She's married to Max.  They have two very awesome kids.  Starla's little girl spent some time in the NICU after a rough delivery, and through it all she clung to her faith...knowing God would get them through it.  She's an avid scrapbooker.  She's my oldest friend, and is such a HUGE blessing in my life.  Please keep her family in your prayers as well...her FIL will soon be undergoing surgery to remove one of his kidneys.  He's going to need a lot of lifting up.


    Vanessa.  She's married to Jim.  They have two fantastic kids.  Their youngest also has some issues with his heart, which they are currently monitoring.  She's recently gave her life to Lord.  Can I get an 'AMEN'!!!  I love reading her blog, and watching her relationship with Him grow.

    If you have a little time, please, visit all their personal blogs to get to know each and every one of them a little better.  Their stories are AMAZING!!!



    Friday, September 3, 2010

    Daily Bible Verse

    On my personal blog I have a daily bible verse.  This verse from 2 Corinthians was on there today, and it just says it all.

    "For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen."


    2 Corinthians 4:17-18 (NIV)

    Nothing can or ever will be more fulfilling that achieving eternal glory.

    Prayer request for today...some people Angie knows are going with Compassion International to Guatemala next week, and they could use prayer as they prepare for this trip.   Join with me in praying for them.

    Lord, lift up the Compassion Team as they prepare to leave behind their families to help those in need.  You're calling them to do your work, so let Your light shine through them in the work they are going to do.  Amen.

    I hope everyone enjoys this Holiday week-end!!!  

    God Bless!

    Always learning

    This is the first time I've written anything online, outside of facebook. I feel a little out of my element...which it seems is the plan God has had for me this past year. It seems I am constantly asking for the things I want rather than what I need. So often I doubt what His plans are, especially when they aren't going the way that I want! Eventually though, He provides something bigger and better than what I was trying to get originally! And that humbles me!

    I read a verse this week in my devotional that brought things into focus for me: I will make you my promised bride forever. I will be good and fair; I will show you my love and mercy. Hosea 2:19

    I was reminded that my Father knows what I need and when I need it, and just as I ensure my children have what they need, He always does the same for me! He has pulled my little family unit together, even stronger than before. He has opened doors for me to honor Him and has brought new special people into my life to remind me of His promises! While His goal is to not make me happy; it is to make me His!

    My prayer is for everyone to find what He does for you and rejoice in it! We serve a Mighty God!

    Word of God Speak

    I feel more at peace right now than I ever have in my life!

    during this process I've never asked Him to heal me, but to give me a sense of peace about His will. About the decisions before me, and what the 'right' decision  for me is.

    I've mentioned on my personal blog how he revealed it to me.  It was a pretty profound moment in my life.  Don't get me wrong...I still have 'bad' days where I don't completely understand it, but I trust in Him and I know this is part of His master plan.

    because of this journey a great group of women has come together to praise and worship Him, and lift each other up. I'm so incredibly humbled.

    Last night as I was praying about the message He would want me to tell the world, I found myself at a loss for words, but feeling His presence so close telling me it is okay to just be still and listen.

    I looked down and was staring straight at a piece of paper my dad had left on my computer desk last week. The only thing my eyes seemed to be able to focus on was a song he had wrote by Mercy Me....Word of God Speak.

    Even though I have heard the song several times, I youtube'd it, and as I listened I heard the song in a way I never have before. It's okay to not always have the words to speak; He doesn't need us to talk all the time...sometimes we just need to be still and listen to what He is saying.

    Thursday, September 2, 2010

    what if?



    it's always a bit unnerving to try to think about what to say to a first-time audience.

    with my personal blog, i didn't really think about it. i just started writing, my thoughts, my feelings, my stories. and am still a little shocked that people actually want to read it!

    when i thought about what i wanted to say here though...
    i came up a bit short.

    so i did what i have (finally) learned to do in these situations.
    i decided to ask One who is way bigger than me and my thoughts

    and driving home from running errands i asked the Father
    "what would You have me say to Your people?"

    and this is what immediately came to mind.

    i saw a picture of a young woman
    barefoot
    in grass
    smiling
    laughing
    dancing
    delighting

    and i felt like God was saying
    "smile more, even when you don't feel it
    laugh often, because you've found joy
    dance with abandon
    delight yourself in worship of Me"

    i have written quite a bit about worship, about returning to childlike qualities of not caring what anyone around you is doing -- just.worshiping

    and most of the time i try to practice that

    so today i ask you:

    what if you just let go?

    what if you danced before the Lord
    not caring what anyone else thought?
    what if you sang at the top of your lungs
    whether anyone's with you or not?
    what if you let that grace wash over you
    like the ocean it is
    and bathed in His love for awhile?


    i always told my students
    that i didn't like the "what if" game
    but right now...
    i love it.

    (photo credit: google images)

    Take me out of the dark

    I don't know how I am worthy of the love and care that The Lord is constantly giving me. But this song speaks to my heart. No matter where we are in our lives or what obstacles we are trying to overcome, He will always be walking with us.

    The Blessing