Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Christmas Musings

Just some thoughts as Christmas comes to an end:

This was one of the best ever.  All our children and grandchildren were here - spent the night too!  Alex said, "I bet it's been 25 years since everyone was here overnight."  He's right.

The Lord gave us a bigger house - and everyone has been so excited to be able to come to Granny and Papa's for the first time in 4 years.  Thanksgiving was wonderful - and Christmas was even better. We had every couch full, all the little kids' cots, the daybed and trundle, 3 blow-up beds, and even some of the recliners - then the 4 biggest grandsons slept on the living room rug after having an xbox marathon until 3 a.m.

Jill noticed that Chris was trying to win an IPad and asked if we would like to all go together and surprise him with one.  Of course, we did and we could all hardly wait until we could watch him open it.  Priceless.  He was "blown away". 

Homemade waffles for breakfast (except Jackson and Millie who ate Fruity Pebbles). Warmed up left-overs for lunch. Then everyone stayed as long as they could and one by one left during the day.  Made the usual "let-down" after Christmas so much less!

Our friend and in-law...Gerry's dad, Gerald, went home to be with Jesus Christmas morning.  How our hearts ache for Gerry, Sheila, Chad and Wendy - and all the family.  Our grandsons were somber when they first arrived and red-eyed.  We know they are all heartbroken... but Gerald?  He is whole, happy and rejoicing with all those in heaven.  Again, someone will be meeting our little April before we do.  I get teary every time I think on it all.

There are many things we cannot understand, but this I know - God is good.  He is faithful.  His Word stands forever.  We are counting on it!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

And two months later...

Here I am again.  I don't know where the past two months have gone.  That's one thing about time...it passes...and then it's forever gone.  Our life is kind of on hiatus right now. Everything has come to a little bit of a standstill.  Jay had 5 bypasses in his heart 2 weeks ago today.  He is doing so well, and I have become his nurse.  It's a privilege to do so.  I can tell how he is by what he focuses on.  At first, he was in so much pain - he didn't focus on anything else, naturally.  Now, his leg has begun to get some of his attention.  I know his boredom will be next!

God is so good.  We are trying to listen and see what He wants to show us about Himself during this "down" time.

One blessing in all this is that we've gotten to see our children and grandchildren a whole lot MORE!  I have laughed more in the past two weeks than in a long time.  Our youngest grandchildren are 2, 2 and almost 4 and what a hoot! So funny...a delight.  Our children are awesome.  I've always known it, and they just prove it over and over again.  They are showing their parents how much they love us...and "requiting" us above and beyond their raising, believe me.

The outpouring of prayer on Jay's behalf has also been amazing.  This is why he is doing so well. Our church family has been so faithful to pray, bring food and send cards...some 3 and 4 times! They are taking care of us.

We praise God for His love...His mercy that is new every morning...His grace that enables us.  How can we keep from praising His Name?  We are SO blessed.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Pour Out

Do you ever feel guilty for talking so much when you are in your prayer time?  I often struggle to listen, I'm so busy talking!  My K-Love verse this morning...

O my people, trust in him at all times. Pour out your heart to him, for God is our refuge
                                                                                                                            ~ Psalm 62:8, NLT

There it is...straight from the Word.  Pouring out my heart to Him is not a bad thing...in fact, He tells me to do it!  It shows where my trust is...Who I am depending upon...where my refuge is. 

So, just pour out your heart.  He loves to hear us.  He loves to answer us.  He is our refuge.

Thank You, Father!

Monday, August 29, 2011


As I drove to work this morning, I listened to K-Love as always - singing
along and praising the Lord.  At the appointed time, the news came on. I
admit I was "hearing", not necessarily "listening", until the newscaster began
sharing about the upcoming 9-11 memorial service to be held in NYC.
She shared that this year, there will be no prayer at the service. Let me
repeat that...NO PRAYER.  Suddenly, my ears perked up and I was
listening.  They do not want to offend any of the participating clergy...so
NO PRAYER this year.  There will be spiritual readings (whatever that
means) but NO PRAYER.

I remember well 9-11.  Have you seen the newspaper ads that ask,
"Where were you on 9-11?"  I'm sure you, like me, can recite exactly
where you were and every detail of that day.  9-11 is what we call a
"life-changing" event.  Everything in our world changed that day.

The Sunday following 9-11, there were strangers in our service at church.
There were scared folks...people wanting us to baptize their babies (we don't
do this by the way)...people seeking comfort, peace, and security.  It is not
strange that they turned to the church...that as a nation we cried out to GOD! 
For a few weeks, maybe months people looked to God.

Another familiar statement you hear and read is, "NEVER FORGET".  This
morning I realized that as a nation, we have forgotten.  We have forgotten
Who our Source is...we have forgotten only God can give us true peace and
security.  We have forgotten how we cried out to Him in our national distress.
We have forgotten the lesson of 9-11.

We are more concerned with offending men, than with offending the God of
the Universe - our Creator - the "one with whom we have to do."  My heart
hurts and is so heavy with this realization.  God may have allowed 9-11 as our
wake-up call...to bring our nation back to Him...our last chance.

We have forgotten.  NO PRAYER.  Sad...sad.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

New Things

I didn't look up the reference, but in scripture God says He will do a "new" thing.  Lately, it seems every day or so, I've been struck with the thought or idea of God doing a new thing.  I know God loves variety, He planned individuality.  He has made every person unique and I believe every animal and plant - every living thing has it's own individuality. Even the stars are unique and He calls them by name!  So, I know He likes "different".

We, on the other hand, like "same" - to some degree.  Same means we know what to expect.  Same means no surprises.  Same means comfort and security.  We seem to carry this desire for "same" into everything God does as well.

God is always working - do you believe that?  I do.  Yet, I don't always see or know where He is working.  Maybe one reason I can't see Him, is because He is doing something "NEW"!  What a concept that is. 
When someone believes they are following the Lord's direction and they try to do something "new" - too often the response of those around them is negative.  Why?  I'm not positive, but I fear it is simply because we like "same".

I am beginning to understand that God does new things all the time.  A church is planted and if they experience any measure of success...they write a book and everyone rushes out to do exactly what they did.  What if God is wanting to something "new" in every single church?  Oh my.  That would mean we would have to communicate with Him and listen for His leading.  We might look different...do something different than anyone else in the whole world.  We might have to exercise faith, believe God for something we've never seen before.

We have a new thing happening in our family right now.  Jill and Alex went through infertility and in-vitro to have Amelia 2+ years ago.  Well, this time - God decided to do something "new" - He blessed them with a pregnancy all on their own - quickly - no outside help this time!

I am praying that God will open my eyes...open my ears...help me to hear His leading - I want Him to do something "new" in my life and in my church...I invite Him to use me!


Monday, July 25, 2011

Let Faith Arise

I come to this page fairly often, look at the date and think, "Man, I need to post something!"  I think a minute, and then say to myself, "Nah, I don't have anything worthwhile to say." 

I write for another blog now as well, a commitment that takes priority over writing for this.  Today, I am going to share my other post...

Let Faith Arise

I receive a daily scripture in email from K-Love radio every day. I saved this one and have read it several times this week:
                           For our present troubles are small and won't last very long.
                         Yet they produce for us a   glory that vastly outweighs them
                     and will last forever!                  (2 Corinthians 4:17, NLT)

I am so thankful for the promises God makes to us in His word! These are the thoughts that thrill me to my core…that I cling to when trouble comes:  

· No matter how big my trouble seems…God says it is small. 
· My present trouble…is temporary! 
· This is the big one…this trouble will bring glory for me…Glory! 
· This glory is eternal.


 Chris Tomlin recently penned these lyrics:  

“Be still, there is a Healer
His love is deeper than the sea
His mercy, it is unfailing
His arms a fortress for the weak

Let faith arise
Let faith arise


I lift my hands to believe again 
You are my Refuge, You are my Strength
As I pour out my heart
These things I remember
You are faithful God, forever
Let faith arise...”


When any trouble comes, we will flounder if our faith does not rise up within us. Faith arises as we remember and choose to believe the promises God has made. Hide His Word within Your heart so when trouble comes and you pour out your heart to Him - you will not spend one moment in doubt, or fear, or distress. The Holy Spirit will bring His Word to mind and you can choose to let your faith arise!







Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Married to the Ministry

I saw a title just now, Married to the Ministry.  I am praying for those words of wisdom that describe my blog right now.

I am married to this guy...

and this one...

and this one...
 Ah, yeah ... this is that preacher fellow, the minister.  He wears many "hats", as do I.  He works hard, plays hard, preaches hard...strives to be there for his church members. 

 When one is "married" to the ministry, what does that mean?
  • Ministry comes before me...therefore, I am not important?
  • Ministry belongs to my spouse...not to me?
  • Ministry takes all our time...I'd rather be doing something else?
  • Ministry causes disappointments...it hurts?
  • Ministry puts me in a proverbial fishbowl...I have no privacy?
I'm not sure exactly what the problem is, but "Married to the Ministry" has a negative feeling to me.

When God called Jay into ministry...He called me as well.  No, we are not co-pastors - this makes me
smile...almost laugh out loud.  Sometimes I feel like a co-pastor.  Ministry can be very lonely, especially
for the minister.  I belong to Jesus, just like Jay does.  I have a calling, just like Jay does.  God knew
what He was doing when He called US to ministry.  We are in it - together.

Finding one's place in ministry is not always easy.  Sometimes there are preconceived notions of what
the minister's wife is and what she does or does not do.  Years ago, our pastor's wife told me, "My
job is to take care of the preacher."  That's a good starting point for the minister's wife.

We must set boundaries...limits.  We must set aside family time.  Ultimately it's like everything in life -
we have to have balance.  I believe if I do what Jesus asks me to do, there is enough time to do it.
When I am out of balance...the things I'm passionate about can take over...and other things suffer.
When I take on things Jesus hasn't asked me to do...my time gets out of whack.  When I surrender
to the opinions of others, I can be doing lots of things I am not supposed to be doing.   That is not
the fault of "ministry" - that is my fault.

Conversely, ministers must also set boundaries and limits.  Ministers need time off, family time...even
sabbaticals.  Carrying the load of others' lives and problems is particularly exhausting.  There is
tremendous responsibility in leading and teaching others the Word of God.  Some ministers are simply
work-a-holics and they would be if they were CEO's or engineers or mechanics.  That again is not
the fault of ministry.

So, just for the record, this preacher's wife is Married to the Minister.


Friday, June 24, 2011

A Thousand Words

 Kandace, Amelia, Millie, Jackson....the joy of grandchildren.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Children Learn What They Live

This is a once commonly found poem written by  Dorothy Law Nolte, Ph.D and copyrighted in
1972.   I remember seeing it often, usually in poster form.  It always made me stop and evaluate
myself.  I was often found "lacking" and I would vow to do better.  You may remember it, or it
may well be "before your time".  Take a quick read...

If children live with criticism, they learn to condemn.

If children live with hostility, they learn to fight.

If children live with fear, they learn to be apprehensive.

If children live with pity, they learn to feel sorry for themselves.

If children live with ridicule, they learn to feel shy.

If children live with jealousy, they learn to feel envy.

If children live with shame, they learn to feel guilty.

If children live with encouragement, they learn confidence.

If children live with tolerance, they learn patience.

If children live with praise, they learn appreciation.

If children live with acceptance, they learn to love.

If children live with approval, they learn to like themselves.

If children live with recognition, they learn it is good to have a goal.

If children live with sharing, they learn generosity.

If children live with honesty, they learn truthfulness.

If children live with fairness, they learn justice.

If children live with kindness and consideration, they learn respect.

If children live with security, they learn to have faith in themselves and in those about them.

If children live with friendliness, they learn the world is a nice place in which to live.

Children DO learn what they live.  God places them in homes to be formed and molded. His plan
is for godly parents to nurture and train them to love and serve Him - that is our purpose in this

Unfortunately, we parents have our own issues.  We get off track...forget our purpose as parents.
When this happens, we begin to teach our children that other things are most important...
  • baseball
  • popularity
  • cheerleading
  • jobs and careers
  • success
  • popularity
  • physical beauty
  • entertainment
  • recreation
  • golf
Children learn that we're too busy.  They see what is important to us...and that's what they learn.
We can't fool them.

Bill Gothard taught that the one thing parents desire is to be proud of their children...and the one
thing children desire from their parents - approval.

This is my favorite picture this week...

I LOVE it... my granddaughter, Amelia, playing the piano with me.  Old, wrinkled, thin-skinned, age spotted hands - with tiny, perfect, soft as silk - sweet baby hands.

I find we want to just "tell" our children what to do most of the time. But God says to "bring your children up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord".  We are pretty good at admonishing...teaching/telling.  But nurturing has the idea of teaching by DOING with. We are teaching our children by everything we do...they are listening...they are watching.  We have the opportunity to show them Christ's love 24/7, in fact...we are called to do so.  Our children are our #1 priority in ministry. The old "quality" time is what is important will not cut it.  Our children need quality quantity time to be nurtured for the Lord.

The truth is our children will learn how to make a living, they'll make it. But they will not learn how
TO LIVE unless they are taught and that is our job - given to us by God. They are HIS inheritance
to us, the only eternal thing we have in this life.

Amelia has been here at my house for  a couple of days.  She gets up and immediately, and I mean
IMMEDIATELY starts playing.  Why?  Why do children love to play?  They learn through playing.
They play house, they carry babydolls, they play cars, they build with blocks, they sing ....they build skills and learn as they play. Children need to learn by doing along-side the loving, guiding hands of their parents and grandparents.  This is nurturing. Oh yes, as the Granny - I have a part in this training too!

"Lord, remind me that my grandchildren also learn what they live. When they come to Granny and Papa's, help me nurture and give my attention.  Remind me to guide wisely and show them our love and devotion to You. They are learning what they live."

Saturday, May 14, 2011

What Does One Do Without Family?

What does one do without family?

I saw two men today in two different locations on Interstate 55...walking...carrying all their belongings...seeking a ride.  I looked and my heart cried. I thought, "Do they have no family?"

When in trouble...what does one do without family?

When heart-broken...what does one do without family?

I cannot imagine.  I hope I never know.

"Lord, help me demonstrate Your love and family to those who have none.  Help me never to take for granted the wonderful family You've given to me."

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Faith is...

This is the title of a wonderful little book I was first introduced to years ago (it appears to be out of print now).  It has been speaking to me lately, so I think I will share it little by little, until led otherwise.

Faith is...
                 The conviction of realities I cannot see or feel.

On this page in my little book,  I have added Hebrews 11:1.  We walk by faith, not by sight.  We walk by faith, not by feelings.  Often in the Psalms, David cries out regarding all he "feels"...but then he always speaks truth to himself (and to us) regarding what "is".  I feel lost and undone.  The truth, the reality, is - God is holding me in His hand...He is in control...He is ABLE...He has a plan for me...it will be accomplished.

True faith believes in real things that cannot be seen or even felt - on God's Word - it is enough.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Safeguarding Your Marriage

This are not my words, this time.  I am re-directing you here:


This lady says it better than I could - the truth and the way and the light...

The Sisters Cafe blog

I am blogging about another food blog I view regularly - The Sisters Cafe.  It is 5 sisters and their mom - beautiful photos of delicious looking food.  I thoroughly enjoy.  Give-away this week is 3 cookbooks!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

The Whole Earth

"...is full of His glory" - according to Psalms.  A beautiful rainbow...a flaming sunset...a breathtaking sunrise...a newborn babe's cry - glorious.

Today these are blooming in my "new" yard...

and my very own roses...

and my sweet hostas (planted myself!!!!)...

Just another way God's glory fills the earth...thank you, Lord.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Party Planning

Well, this post is to enable me to enter a give-away! Yay!!! Although, I've entered many and to date have only won one time - ever. But that's okay.

I have not planned many parties, I must admit. I am not a lover of birthday parties - never like them for myself, so my poor children didn't have many. But I have planned many events for church and women's ministry.

I confess planning a party or an event can be very stressful.  What if no one comes? What if more come than I've prepared for? What is there isn't enough food?  ???? It seems it is common to question oneself almost to the point of insanity.

The last thing I have planned was a Ladies Brunch for the women in our church.
I love for a party or event to make those attending feel very special.  That means the food needs to be excellent, the decorations as beautiful as possible, and the program lift them up in some way. 

Our theme was "A Woman's Armor" using an apron to represent the armor.

My daughter-in-law, Sara, had vases, flowers and scarves for the table decor. Simple, but elegant.  My color theme was black, white w/hot pink. I found black and white plates and used hot pink napkins.  I used couple dress forms which I "dressed" in adorable aprons - that and some ferns were the room decor. 

My daughter, Joy, came. 

She demonstrated simple recipes to serve in your home - and spoke about using your home for hospitality and the importance of holiness.  We made sure everyone had a copy of the recipes too.

We served Spinach Quiche, Fruit K-bobs, and Blueberry Scones with Sunshine Punch, Coffee and Tea. The food was wonderful!

Door prizes - aprons, cookbooks, candles - made the morning complete!

Sunday, April 3, 2011

I Hate the Devil

I hate the devil.  He's a lowdown, dirty, lying, destructive skunk.
He never quits - never gives up.

I hate how he deceives people.

Whenever churches start to grow...whenever good things happen - he never fails
to show up, stir up and move our focus to whatever bad thing he might have
going on.

I hate that he always finds willing helpers...good folks who do not realize who
they are listening to.

The Bible says we must exercise our senses so we will be able to discern, to be
able to tell the difference between good and evil.  We must have daily doses of the Word,
so we will know untruth when we hear it...so we will know who is speaking to us. 
I hate the devil!

"Lord, help me to discern Your voice...to know when the enemy is trying to use me...to
guard my heart, my mind...and my lips. "

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Long Time, No Write

I go through these "spells" where I come to post, and I feel like I have nothing to say, no thought - nada. 

Today though, I decided to share a little of what's going on with this dynamic duo - Jay and Me!  We are in the midst of remodeling a house the Lord allowed us to buy at the very end of November.  December, January and most of February were the demolishing stage.  Every time we thought we had found the last problem, another would arise - until we ended up with an empty house - literally.  In some places we were even down to the studs.  Not our original plan I assure you!

In February we also had cold, cold weather and Jay got sick. Then I got sick. Then Jay got sick again. Then I got sick again.  I have become more thankful than ever for antibiotics, which I have rarely had to take in my lifetime. We are now on the mend.

Two weekends ago, four of our children, their spouses and children came for a work-day - hallelujah!  Jay was able to help, but I was still not well - so my job was feeding them all.  It had been a long time since I've cooked for them all and I wondered if I still knew how.  It was such a blessing to prepare meals and have them come in starving and chow down.  My daughter in law - Sara - and Jill, my daughter - helped me.
Plus I got to enjoy the grandchildren!

Jayna and Waylon raked out entire yard - about 5 years worth of leaves, at the least.  Tony worked at changing out/updating our receptacles and switches.  Chris, Cary and Alex painted all the ceilings and 3 rooms - priming the rest.  It was like a shot in the arm to us.

This weekend, we have hung all the upper cabinets in the kitchen, starting the beadboard installation in the kitchen, and I painted the 2 front bedrooms.  Jay says under his breath every time we leave, " there's 1000 things to do in this house" - LOL!  It's true, but we are working on it.

Here's a little preview...

Corner bedroom - painted - check!

Kitchen niche - new upper cabinet hung - check!

It's alot like what God has been doing in my heart for almost 36 years...
remodeling...changing....updating....renewing - making me more like
Him little by little.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Second Batch

We are blessed with six children.  They are all 2 to 2 1/2 years apart - but somehow, it
was like 2 batches, the first 3 and the second 3.  It's happening again!!!  We are having
our grandchildren in batches. Chris, Joy and Jayna have children who are teens and tweenies.
And now we're are enjoying the 'second batch'! 

Here they are!!

Millie (16mo), Amelia (17mo), Jackson (3), Joylyn (5)

And here is Kandace (2)

What a treasure!  What a heritage of the Lord!

Can you tell by looking what characters they are?????

I laugh just looking at those faces.

Monday, February 14, 2011

The Best Kind of Tired

February is only half over, but it seems like it's been a busy month!  We've had beautiful snow...

This is our new house...in the snow.

Each year on Valentine's Day, I take some sort of treat to all our widows and singles.  I have yet to find them all at home, but I try!  This year I made strawberry cupcakes with cream cheese icing...and a chocolate heart on top!

This is one thing I just love to do...

And this past weekend, was our church valentine banquet.  I got to do the food and while I had some anxious moments (will there be enough...will the everything go as I've planned?) it was all perfect.

Decor by Janet Hendrix

My homemade truffles at each place.

My new favorite...twice baked potatoes...they were the best!

Melinda and Vicky helped me on Saturday and I must admit by the end of the night, we were pooped! But it's the best sort of tired...when you've made others feel loved and pampered in some little way.  I am the one who is blessed!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Right on Time

We are having a family crisis right now - and we are all clinging to the Word knowing that He is our strength, our comfort, our hope! Crisis bring out our fears. Job said, "the thing I greatly feared has come to pass", as the news of the death of his children was brought to him. 

Abraham and others are listed in Hebrews 11, the Hall of Faith.  He is described as the one who "believed God and it was counted to him - righteousness".   What is believing God?  It is faith...in what He says.

God told Abraham in Genesis that his "seed" would be a stranger in a land that was not theirs...that they would be slaves there and that after 400 years, He would deliver them. I marked that passage.

Then last night I come to Exodus 12: 40-41: "Now, the sojourning of the children of Israel, who dwelt in Egypt, was four hundred and thirty years. And it came to pass at the end of four hundred and thirty years, even the selfsame day it came to pass, that all the hosts of the Lord went out from the land of Egypt."

For this to happen, God first had to allow His people to move to Egypt...to be put into bondage...to suffer.  But He never forgot them...He was with them and at the exact time - He delivered them.  Not just any day, but the exact self-same day - four hundred thirty years to the day, that they went into Egypt!

Yes, we are being tested.  We are hurting and afraid.  We don't know what is ahead.  But we do know this - we are not alone, He is right here with us...He is in control...and He will act in accordance with His will...right on time!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

We Are So Blessed

This is my song in the night...tonight....
We are so blessed
by the gifts from Your hand
We just can't understand
why You love us so much

We are so blessed
we just can't find the way
Or the words that can say
Thank you, Lord, for Your touch

When we're empty, You fill us
'til we overflow
When we're hungry, You feed us
and cause us to know

We are so blessed
Take what we have to bring
take it all, everything
Lord, we love You so much!

We are so blessed
By the things You have done
For the victories we've won
and what You've brought us through

We are so blessed
Take what we have to bring
Take it all everything
Lord, we bring it to You!

Lord, we are SO blessed.  You are so good.
We praise Your Holy Name.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Why is choosing paint colors so hard? Part 2

Well, I have to take back all my words...my complaints.  I went back a few days after painting my two test walls - and lo and behold - I LOVE my bedroom paint!  It looks EXACTLY the way I thought it would...exactly like the paint chip.

The jury is still out on the living room.  It is like the paint chip...I think the disconnect is in my head - figuring out exactly what I want. But, I believe I will use it.

LOL!  Life is good.

Thursday, February 3, 2011


My thoughts are rather jumbled today.  I'm hoping I can straighten them out by writing them down.

I'm thinking about how God made us each unique.  How He made us just the way we are.  And how He loves us unconditionally.  He tells us to loves each other the same way and to forgive as He has forgiven and continues to forgive us!

Here's the rub.  We are sinners.  We are flawed.  The fact that God made us the way we are...and that He loves us unconditionally - does NOT give us the right to stay the way we are.  Jesus died and rose again to give us the power to change...into His image, to reflect Him to those around us.

So, what does it say when we are not changed, when we continue to stay as flawed as we were to begin with?  We even cop out with, "Well, God made me this way."   I have come to believe God gets the most glory when a flawed human is changed through the power of His Spirit.  No one can deny it when someone is truly changed - when someone begins to act like and look more like Jesus - because it is something we can never do on our own.

I cannot continue to act badly and expect you to just love me anyway.  Can I?  I can't use that old - "I'm only human" excuse any longer.   I can't expect God to be pleased with me (He never stops loving me) if I refuse to be obedient and  hear Him when He points out those areas I need changed or if I do not allow His Spirit to work in my heart.

It starts with renewing our minds through His Word.  I am not likely to even see my true reflection...unless I look into His Word. It is easy to deceive myself, or compare myself with someone else, and think I'm looking pretty good!  I do not naturally think like God thinks...I do not see those bad spots that others see.   And face it, all others can see is what I say and do...the expression on my face...my attitude - they cannot see my heart, but God does.  Jesus was very plain about everything we say and do coming straight from our hearts.

Lord, help me to see my reflection...to repent and depend on Your Spirit to change me...so that Your reflection will be seen when others look at me.

Monday, January 31, 2011

Why is choosing paint colors so hard????

Why?  Why can't they come up with a way to show you exactly what paint will look like on your wall? I am far from being color-blind.  I can tell the variations of color quite well.  I even know what I want on my wall. But somewhere between what is in my head...and what is on that color chip - there's a definite disconnect.

Somehow what is on that chip, doesn't end up in the can.  And what is in the can, doesn't end up on the wall. What's the deal?

The person who can solve this dilemma - might become a millionaire - strike that - a billionaire!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Continuing the Journey

Who would have ever thought we would see 2011?  It seems only yesterday that we were about to enter the world of 2000 and everyone was terrified of what might happen...computers might not work...food must be hoarded...funny stuff now.  Yet here we are.

For me, 2010 had some major happenings...

  • My Daddy went home with the Lord - February
  • Cary's family moved to New Madrid, only 1 hour away - April
  • God called me to lead worship - May
  • My brother and I discovered a new relationship built on Christ and His Word - all year
  • God allowed us to buy a house - a "fixer-upper" - November
  • Living Bethlehem 2010, Jesus Saves! - December

My Daddy was a rock...he was there if I needed him.  It already seems as if he's been
gone for years and it hasn't been one full year yet.   Whenever I am surprised by a picture of him, it takes my breath away - I think, "There's Daddy!" and immediately, "He's gone."

We'd spent 2 years here, at least 3 hours from most of our children and grandchildren.  Then God placed Cary in New Madrid, Missouri.  Now we have someone close by...and we get to see them pretty often. It hasn't made me miss our other 5 children and their families any less, but it has removed a little of the loneliness of our family being away from us. 

Probably the most impacting event of all...God called me to lead worship.  Not something I've dreamed of doing...not something I'm particularly comfortable doing...yet - what I was made to do.  I am still not skilled at it...I am still growing and developing...I still struggle to stay close, closer, closest to Him knowing I cannot do it.  But hearing Him call me...priceless.  I still can't believe it - me?  now?  here?  It is probably without a doubt the hardest thing I've ever attempted to do.

Then there's my brother - Dear Kevin (with wife, Sandi) - what an amazing person!  I can't begin to tell you how he has grown in the Lord this year.  Proof positive that we can know the Lord as well as we want to! He has become a spiritual giant in a few short months...well versed in scripture...wise in the truth...willing to follow the Lord into ministry...my strong support and encourager. What a blessing!

Then, this is most likely the most trying while most exciting thing - a house!  We had very little time in December to work on it, so that has started in earnest in 2011. I am a mass of aching muscles and stiff, sore hands - what a "wuss"! It is a typical remodel so far - everything that can go wrong, has - and everytime we think we've found the last problem, another one arises!  I will share more as we go along on this adventure God has given to us.

 And lastly on this particular list - Living Bethlehem 2010, Jesus Saves!  I am continually amazed at what God can do when His people come together.  Men who work against all odds to make fireworks come off at an exact moment in time (while keeping fields from catching on fire - LOL)...couples who haul animals back and forth every night...folks who brave extreme cold for hours 3 nights in a row, in order to share the love and salvation offered by Jesus Christ...ladies who sew for months and months, taking to heart every single costume...those who built (and re-built) the village,  put together gifts,  mix up hot cocoa, bake cookies, pretzels, and bread...those who register and serve and park cars...who hand out candy canes...it is a never ending list.  How my heart is changed from this one event.

My Encouragement for Today talked about the 30 some odd parables told by our Lord.  She talked about how His stories depicted everyday life...everyday happenings.  You know  - death...children moving...new areas of ministry...all the feelings we have, the people in our lives - those are all ordinary and everyday things. 

The Dictionary of Biblical Imagery, "We come to realize that it is in the everyday world of sowing and eating and dealing with family members that people make the great spiritual decisions and that God's grace works."

Stephen Covey, "We are not human beings on a spiritual journey, but spiritual beings on a human journey."

I've only listed a few things here.  There is no way to recount every wonderful thing of this past year...my wonderful praise team...my family...my mom...my friends.

One of my brother's  favorite sayings is, "Loving the journey", as he experiences walking with the Lord and trusting Him in every area.

Who knows what 2011 will bring? We've been placed in this life to live it...by His grace, in His will, through His Holy Spirit.  My new saying is going to be, "Continuing the journey..."