Monday, December 21, 2009

The Ornamental Mystery

One morning, I woke up and made my way to the living room to ready for the baby's arrival. Laying on the couch was a handmade dove ornament from the tree. Odd, I thought. I was quite sure that our ornaments did not have the capability of flying off the tree on there own, but I had other things on my mind, so I replaced the dove and carried on. A little later, I was sitting in the recliner, enjoying a hot cup of coffee, and I glanced over at the tree. What did I find but an empty socket on the strand of lights!! DEFINITELY odd. I KNOW that our lights do not get up in the middle of the night and hop off the tree. I looked around the tree to see if I could figure out what was going on and discovered the runaway light bulb and a couple more ornaments hiding on the floor under the tree. WHAT had gotten into my Christmas decorations??

Suddenly, a small orange thing jumped out at me from under the tree... The cat! Crumb-Crumb found many fun playthings on the Christmas tree and began removing lights and ornaments for his entertainment. I shook my head and put the tree back together, and later caught him playing with the red ball by the formerly missing light bulb. *sigh*

*disclaimer: No ornaments or Christmas lights were harmed in the (still) filming of this post.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

♪♫ Making a List, and Checking Things Off ♫♪

Remember that list of things to do? The one that came with the reminder to enjoy the relationships and Reason rather than get bogged down in the project? Well.... I'm here to tell you, I am making PROGRESS!! Hip, hip, HURRAY!! Look what I've accomplished so far:


Grandma’s press cookies
Chocolate peppermint cookies
Peanut butter blossoms (We ate all the ones that mom sent home on Friday. Yes, we’re lushes sometimes. Yes, they were very tasty.)

Saltine Cracker Toffee Bars (definitely on the permanent list!!)
ANOTHER batch of Mrs. O’s sugar cookies. VERY important

◊ Decorate sugar cookies

◊ Ice the molasses cookies that are already done

Make cookie trays from said cookies + the cookies that we already did on Friday (the ones that actually lasted the weekend around here…)

Thaw out the cookies that we made Friday – that should probably be done first…..
Deliver said cookie trays to K&K, Carquest, H-city fire department (for all their help – technically it’s from us, but it is F-town Fire Department’s “thank you”)
Christmas cards
Pick up and wrap remaining presents from mom’s house
Put together gifts for Batman’s family
Learn go over song to do with the brothers for the Christmas program on Sunday
Get ahold of the brother with the idea to find out what song it is – again. (Ahem, Z, if you’re reading… I, uh, needtoberemindedofwhatsongwearedoing. I am pretty sure that text message has been erased. Oops.)

Oh, you wanted a visual?

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Meet Harry Crumb

This is Harry Crumb. He was rescued two-and-a-half months ago from under the porch at my in-laws' house and spared the life of a feral cat. Instead, he is a spoiled and rambunctious, yet very well loved, mostly-indoor kitty. He is often referred to as "Crumb," "Crumb-Crumb," or just "Kitty," and when he isn't playing with the most random things around the house, he can be found curled up with the dog or on our bed. He makes a fantastic little heater at night.

You may wonder why I am introducing him to you after all this time... Well, you see, I have no doubt that there will be at least one post in the near future involving Crumb-Crumb, and I thought it best for you to have already met him before you read of his adventures, but hopefully no misadventures!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009


The baby is fussing. He is tired, but his bed is currently occupied by Batman (well, it's Batman's bed, but Boo sleeps there when he's here...) and he is not interested in falling asleep on the couch. So instead, I hold him. Rubbing his head and his ears, I watch him as his eyes get heavy and close, and I begin to ponder.

Jesus, what were You like when You were a baby? When You were tired, did your mother hold you while you fell asleep or did she lay You down in Your bed, kiss Your forehead, and walk away? Could she bear to put You down and walk away? Did your lashes sweep down on Your cheeks as you slept or were they short little wisps that didn't reach Your cheeks? Did Your hair stick up in silky spikes all over, or were You bald til You were two? Was Your tiny fist curled around Mary's thumb, or was Your hand open and relaxed while You slept? Did Your mother know the unspeakable joys and sorrows that she would experience as the mother of our Savior, or did she just relish the joy and the beauty of You? At six months old, were people stopping to look and coo at You because You were a baby (and everyone loves babies) or were You already drawing people to Yourself?

Just wondered.

Monday, December 14, 2009

The Reason

There is less than two weeks left until Christmas, and I look at my list of things that I still need to get done and sigh.

♦ Cookies:
◊ Grandma’s press cookies
◊ Chocolate peppermint cookies
◊ Peanut butter blossoms (We ate all the ones that mom sent home on Friday. Yes, we’re lushes sometimes. Yes, they were very tasty.)
◊ ANOTHER batch of Mrs. O’s sugar cookies. VERY important

♦ Make cookie trays from said cookies + the cookies that we already did on Friday (the ones that actually lasted the weekend around here…)
♦ Deliver said cookie trays to K&K, Carquest, H-city fire department (for all their help – technically it’s from us, but it is F-town Fire Department’s “thank you”)
♦ Christmas cards
♦ Pick up and wrap remaining presents from mom’s house
♦ Put together gifts for Batman’s family
♦ Learn song to do with the brothers for the Christmas program on Sunday
♦ Get ahold of the brother with the idea to find out what song it is – again. (Ahem, Z, if you’re reading… I, uh, needtoberemindedofwhatsongwearedoing. I am pretty sure that text message has been erased. Oops.)

Then I take a breath and remember something that Aunt Pat posted on Rachel's page the other day: (in a nutshell) It isn't about the project, it is about the relationship.
It isn't about all of those things that I "need" to get done. It is about the relationships that I build in the meantime. And most of all, it is about our Savior. Not the cookies, not the presents, not even the snow. This is a time to reflect on Him, and thank Him for the ultimate gift: His Son, and therefore, Life.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Off to Grandma's House

Over the river and through the woods,
To grandmother's house we go;
The horse knows the way to carry the sleigh,
Through the white and drifted snow, O!

Over the river and through the woods,
Oh how the wind does blow!
It stings the toes, and bites the nose,
As over the ground we go.

Over the river and through the woods,
To have a first-rate play;
Oh hear the bells ring, "Ting-a-ling-ling!"
Hurrah for Christmas Cookie Baking Day, Hey!

Over the river and through the woods,
Trot fast my dapple gray!
Spring over the ground, like a hunting hound!
For this is Christmas Cookie Baking Day, Hey!

Over the river and through the woods,
And straight through the barnyard gate,
We seem to go extremely slow.
It is so hard to wait!

Over the river and through the woods,
Now grandmother's cap I spy!
Hurrah for the fun! Is the cookie dough done?
Hurrah for the Christmas cookies!

Monday, December 07, 2009

Silent Night

What to do on a quiet, snowy night when either a) everyone else is sleeping or b) no one else is home?

Curl up in the recliner with a cup of tea and some knitting and enjoy the peace and the silence.

Thursday, December 03, 2009

My Bubble

I LOVE Christmas shopping online. Period. I think that there is no other way to do it. Case and point: I was at Kmart (simply because Walmart does not do layaway anymore, and sometimes you just need layaway to store your stuff so it isn't hidden in the pantry for little people to find) today to pay part of our layaway. I was blissfully ALONE (aside from the littles - I let them tag along this time) in the layaway section, and suddenly, a hoard of people swarmed in. I almost tweaked. One woman came up and positioned herself and her cart next to me - not behind me in line - NEXT TO ME. She was getting very close to my bubble. Then, another woman came along side me on the other side, hovered over my purse (definitely INSIDE my bubble at this point) and asked if Kmart "does" layaway. Uh, yes. They do. By now, "having a tweak" as The Girl would say, was imminent. Not IF, but WHEN. One more woman nearly tipped the scales. The layaway-wonderer moved on, and another woman took her place. I caught sight of a dazzling, ear-to-ear smile out of the corner of my eye, drew a breath and turned my head to see who was inside my bubble this time. The tension eased out of my body and I let out a laugh as I saw the source of the dazzling smile was one of my friends from church. We left layaway together talking about the merits of online shopping. Less people. Hurray!

In keeping with the desire to remain thankful in all things, I'm quite thankful for miss L today. She was a breath of fresh air in the crazy mass of bodies Christmas shopping. I am also quite thankful for online shopping. :)

Merry Almost-Christmas and Happy Shopping, everyone!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Being Thankful

It is Thanksgiving week, and most people are turning their thoughts towards things they are thankful for. My question, though, is this: Why is it that we are only focusing on being thankful for one day or one week out of the year? Our pastor has addressed the issue of being thankful in all things (and therefore having the right attitude) over the past two weeks. This is an area that God had been pricking our hearts in to begin with, and, with Pastor's input, the pricks have gotten a little stronger. I find it fascinating that I can pick out ungratefulness or general attitudes of cynicism in others, but so often don't see or hear my own. That is, until my children - you know, the same kind of mini recorders you might have in your own home - open their mouths. How can I expect my kids to have the right attitude when they hear me being ungrateful or cynical? No, things do not always go my way, but what happened to being thankful in all things? Hmm... Ouch.

The Girl has been getting growing pains lately, and while I feel very bad for her - I experienced them myself very often when I was younger - I am also reminded that as adults, we still get them. It is not fun to hear your pastor speak and "hit the nail on the head" two Sundays in a row. I am not overly fond of wanting to squirm in church. It is not overly fun knowing that the pricking I feel in my soul is the work of God, growing me, and requiring more of me. Despite the discomfort, with all of my heart I want to be more and more Christlike every day. So I will take the pricking, and I will surrender to my Lord, and I will grow. Retraining is in order, and I will follow the advice of Paul in Philippians 4:

"Always be full of joy in the Lord. I say it again - rejoice! Let everyone see that you are considerate in all you do. Remember, the Lord is coming soon.
Don't worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank Him for all He has done. Then you will experience God's peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.
And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise." Phil 4:4-8, NLT

"Grumble and Complain" are not part of the instructions there. Instead, I think that the above verses are at least part of the picture of the Fruits of the Spirit. Galatians 5:22-23 NLT says,

"But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience (NIV reads longsuffering) [I'm not being very patient - or longsuffering - if I can't be thankful], kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things!"

This week, as everyone around us is focusing on being thankful, we will begin retraining ourselves in our home. Becoming more thankful and longsuffering in our own lives, and passing it on to our children.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Yes, he is THAT kind of guy....

You know the one.... The guy that:

° loves you unconditionally,
° prays for you,
° provides for you,
° makes you laugh,
° surprises you,
° still gives you butterflies,
° remembers your favorite flower and sends it just so he can say "I love you...."
° you give your whole heart to without a second thought.

The hubby thought today was a perfect day for a surprise... just because. I think he fits the bill of "THAT guy" perfectly.

Thanks, Batman. :) You win the who-loves-who-more debate... For today. :)

1. November 029, 2. November 024, 3. November 013, 4. November 026

Thursday, November 12, 2009


Let me just say, I LOVE my Kitchen Aide. Really, I do. Ask Batman. Or my mom. Or my sister-in-law. They will all tell you it's true. "Why?" you may ask. Well, faithful readers, thank you for asking. I'll tell you why I love it so much.

You can do ANYTHING with it. Really, you can.

- Fill your house with yummy smells.
- Speaking of smells - get rather yucky, potent smells out of your nose and fill your brain with nice images.
- Use up a rather monstrous zucchini.
- Express your love for your family.
- Prepare for a pretend visit with your brother and bff.
- Use up the pumpkin in the fridge.
- Make the hubby's tummy happy.

Oh, that isn't all! You can also do the normal things you would expect for a Kitchen Aide, like mixing, stirring, kneading, grating and shredding.

Cookbook stands (a gift from another sister-in-law), and a clean kitchen are two other things that I am rather fond of. I do think that the Kitchen Aide love it top of the list, though. Don't you see why I love mine so much? That's what I thought.

Thursday, November 05, 2009

Sing it with me....

"We are the champions - my friends
And we'll keep on fighting - till the end -
We are the champions -
We are the champions
No time for losers
'Cause we are the champions - of the world!"

Can anyone say "27th World Championship for the Yankees!"??

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Happy Fall!!

The kids had TONS of fun at this years Fall Fun Night. Making it just that much more special was the fact that the cousins are home and got to join in the fun. Thanks, Aunt E!!! :)

Clockwise from the top: Monkey played with marshmallow-toothpick sculptures and tried making some of his own; Aunt E and Tonka looking very spiffy; The Boy and his best bud creating hairdos; The Girl and Tonka creating marshmallow-toothpick sculptures; The Boy posing after a "round" of golf; three little buds showing of their face paints; The Girl and Tonka getting ready for a game; The girl getting her second face paint; the kids with Pastor M, all of them thrilled with their faces; a rousing game of hot potato; The Boy having his turn with the face painter; the boys post hair sculpting.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

The Boy's First...

Way back in September (I know, terrible updating), The Boy had what he said was "thebestnightof(my)lifeEVER!!!!!!" What did he get to do? He went to his very first rock concert with mommy and Uncle D. And he LOVED IT. That is what he said, anyway. I really couldn't tell how he would feel between the squealing, screaming and jumping all around the house when I told him that I was taking him to see his absolute favorite band LIVE. It is entirely possible that he did not sleep at all the night before.

He loved the music, was awestruck to see (and MEET) Kutless in person (mommy and Uncle D reminded him that they are people too and put their pants on just like we do in the morning), and tuckered himself out with all the jumping, dancing, screaming, singing, and... worshiping! I have to admit, while is was neat to meet them, my favorite part was watching my son get absolutely lost in worship to his heavenly Father. He didn't care who was looking. At that point, he didn't even seem to care that he was fifteen feet away from Kutless themselves. It was him and God. Witnessing that was definitely my highlight. Coming in second, though, was the absolute joy on his face while he got a chance to meet the guys face to face and actually chat with a couple of them for a couple minutes. Daddy's question to The Boy when we got home? "Did you tell them you play the drums, too?" He giggled (yes, boys do giggle) and told daddy that he was so nervous meeting them that he didn't even remember that daddy was teaching him to play.

Sunday, September 06, 2009

Music to a SOMETIMES OCD mom's ears

The Girl - "Hey, mommy!"

The Mommy - "What, honey?"

The Girl - "My lego people have a house, and it is VERY organized!"

The Mommy - pats herself on the back for a job well done. Part time OCD clone: check.

Saturday, September 05, 2009

The Hazards of Dirt Bike Riding

The Boy and The Girl went out to ride their dirt bikes the other day in the gravel pit located behind and up the hill from our house. Shortly after they left, I heard the sound of ONE motorcycle returning, and then The Boy burst in the door.


"Uh, Bud, where's your sister?"

"MOM! Seriously, please! I need it right away! I'll only have it for a minute!"

"Bud, your sister...."

"Mom! There'safoxnexttohisdeninthegravelpitandhe'sjustsittingtherelookingatusandIwanttotakeapictureofitpleasemayIuseyourcamerareallyreallyquickplease!"

Yes, it all came out that fast. "Boy! Where. Is. Your. Sister."

"She's still riding around in the gravel pit, keeping an eye on the fox! And, MOM! I got really really really close to it, close enough to touch, and it didn't run away!!"

Fantastic. Just what a protective mother wants to hear. I haven't been so "countryfied" that the thought of wild animals near my children does not send my heart into freaked-out spasms. Despite the heart palpitations , I took a deep breath and handed the camera to my dear son, with strict instructions to NOT WRECK while in possession of mommy's beloved camera. With a quick "I promise" and a blur of not-so-little feet, he was off, motor racing to get back to the fox before it no longer felt like being an object of intense scrutiny from "little" people.

Several tense minutes later, the sound of two motorcycles made it's way to my ears, and I breathed a sigh of relief. They could not drive their motorcycles down the hill very well if they were maimed. Right? The Boy came rushing in to show me the pictures, and as he looked at them with me, he commented, "well, that stinks! I was a whole lot closer to him than the picture shows!"

Thanks, Bud, I appreciate that piece of information. Have you ever heard of "TMI"? Trust me, this qualifies.

Friday, August 28, 2009

The Speed Wobble

It was a beautiful day when we were driving down the Gulf Coast in Mississippi. I looked ahead and saw my husband on his motorcycle, his front tire wobbling. Shaking my head and rolling my eyes, I muttered something about him messing around. Later, when we arrived at our destination, he mentioned how he momentarily panicked when his bike went into what is commonly called a "speed wobble" after he brought it down out of a wheelie and he was unable to stop it. He replayed how he had stiffened up and fought to control his motorcycle, knowing he was headed for a certain crash. Striving to regain control, something filtered through his brain and he heard it: "Just relax." Relax?!?! Seriously?! But he remembered hearing about the natural reaction to fight the wobble and try to bring the motorcycle under control, but the RIGHT reaction is to just relax, and the bike would correct itself. So he fought his nature and did just that. He let go of the handlebars and just completely relaxed his body, relinquishing even the remotest possibility of control over his motorcycle. Amazingly, the front wheel straightened and the bike was back on the "straight and narrow course" that he was previously driving.

This memory has been cycling through my mind lately. The sparkling water on the right, the broken and battered buildings and vegetation on the left. My husband fighting to remain in control in front of me. His words recounting how he let go, no longer trying to control his course....

Can you tell where I am going with this?

It amazes me that God remains so patient with us, tapping our shoulder, nudging us and reminding us of the right way.... Oh, how long it takes me to get it sometimes! I've been remembering Batman's story of learning to let go in the physical while God has been teaching us and reminding us and prompting us to let go in the spiritual. How many times do we fight and strive to remain - or regain - control of our lives, heading for certain destruction, when the right answer is to relinquish control to the One who can really handle it? Batman and I finally got it. It's time to let go. Guess what? The bike lined right up, and we're back on the straight and narrow course we started on. Is your bike in a speed wobble? Are you headed for a guaranteed wreck? Let go of the handle bars. Relax. Let God take control.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

What is it?

There has been a devotional sitting on the end table for a couple months now (thanks, M), silently beckoning me into a deeper study and pursuit. I have put it off, with varying excuses ranging from, "I'm too tired today. I'll start tomorrow," (and we all "tomorrow" never comes) to "I don't think I have it in me right now." Today I picked up the devotional and set aside my worries, fears, and short-comings. Why? The devotional is "The Pursuit of Holiness" and frankly, holiness is something that I have struggled with forever, it seems. I know that God calls us to holiness, but it often seems so unattainable. And in this quest to be holy, will I acquire a "holier-than-thou" attitude and put people off rather than draw them in? Absolutely... if it is holiness of my own works and doings rather than God working in me. God demands holiness of us, though, so, HOW?

One of the questions in the devotional asked for the definition of holiness in my own words. Would this follow in a dictionary? I don't know, but I do know that this was God's little insight into my soul for this journey.

Holiness is simply this: It is being so close with God that His character rubs off on us rather than the character of everything around us. It's that simple. It is not a super-formula I need to figure out and follow. It is not a series of actions and reactions to magically become holier. If I, in my own strength, try to be holy, then yes, I absolutely will have that "holier-than-thou" attitude and repulse people. But if it is God's work in me, that righteous and holiness will be real, and it will in turn draw people to Him and be that shining light.

Leviticus 19:2 says "Speak to the entire assembly of Israel and say to them: 'Be holy because I, the LORD your God, am holy." Holiness is a commandment from God. It is not optional. Are you up for the challenge?

Tuesday, July 14, 2009


I love how God is always so timely. Whether it is a reminder, or a word of encouragement, or a little (much needed sometimes) nudge, He is always right on time. And He always fulfills His promises and does what He said He'll will do... in HIS perfect time. So, in case you are in need of any reminders today too, I thought I'd share our verses for the day and the view we had at one of the kids' soccer games recently. Ah, the ultimate reminder of God's sovereignty, faithfulness and promises.

And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Son may bring glory to the Father. You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it. If you love me, you will obey what I command.

John 14:13-15 NIV


And the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up; and if he have committed sins, they shall be forgiven him. Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.

James 5:15,16 KJV


And whatsoever we ask, we receive of him, because we keep his commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in his sight.

And this is his commandment, That we should believe on the name of his Son Jesus Christ, and love one another, as he gave us commandment.

1 John 3:22,23 KJV

For they will be a people blessed by the LORD, they and their descendants with them. Before they call I will answer; while they are still speaking I will hear.

Isaiah 65:23b,24 NIV


Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.

Jeremiah 29:12,13 NIV


They will call on My name,
And I will answer them;

I will say,
"They are My people,'

And they will say,
"The LORD is my God.'

Zechariah 13:9 NASB

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Our first B&B experience

Let me just say, I should have done this YEARS ago. Done what? you may ask. I should have left generic hotels behind and moved on to the more tranquil pastures of a Bed and Breakfast. Batman indulged me this year, and we stayed at a beautiful B&B while we were in Elmira for our annual excursion on the Toys for Tots ride. Let me just say, it was Heaven. By the time Sunday afternoon rolled around, I had NO interest in leaving. Alas, the real world was beckoning us home, so we bid our goodbyes, but not before reserving "our" room for next year. Yes, it was that wonderful. Tony and Marianne Spycher, owners of Villa Bernese are fantastic hosts. Their house was absolutely charming - pictures do not even begin to do it justice - and the food! Oh, the food. Monday I had to start counting points again. It was that delicious and that plentiful! The down comforter and the complimentary bottle of champagne were added bonuses, but the company of Tony and Marianne and the other guests was by far the best. Batman and I are looking forward to returning next year to celebrate our anniversary again! I've always looked forward to the Toys for Tots ride, but this year I am looking forward to it even more! If you ever get a chance, stop in and visit the Spychers at Villa Bernese. You won't regret it!

More photos can be found here.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

The Wait

It seems that all around me my friends are in the midst of the same lesson I am: The Wait. Some of us our throwing ourselves at the feet of God and crying out, "Rescue me!!" Others have a heart's desire and are ready to see if fulfilled NOW, while still others would like to see certain things lined up and doors opened. Different scenarios, but the the same lesson: learning to wait on God's perfect timing and perfect plan. Learning that His ways are much higher and better than our own, and if we could just see it the way He sees it, we would be patient for sure. But that isn't the point of the lesson, is it? Rather, what we need to learn is to patiently wait even though we don't see the big picture. To sit back and trust Him to complete the work in His timing, and know that it will be far more glorifying to Him and perfect when He does it His way rather than ours. So, today I have the following song by John Waller playing on repeat as I go about my day. I wanted to share it with you, my fellow waitees. I'm sorry, you'll have to deal with the lyrics alone. I will not be singing it to you via the blog, for a variety of reasons. Stand strong, dear friends. Wait patiently, and remember that our Abba Father has our best interests at heart, and in the end, it will be perfect and the glory will be all His.

While I'm Waiting
John Waller

I'm waiting
I'm waiting on You, Lord
And I am hopeful
I'm waiting on You, Lord
Though it is painful
But patiently, I will wait

I will move ahead, bold and confident
Taking every step in obedience
While I'm waiting
I will serve You
While I'm waiting
I will worship
While I'm waiting
I will not faint
I'll be running the race
Even while I wait

I'm waiting
I'm waiting on You, Lord
And I am peaceful
I'm waiting on You, Lord
Though it's not easy
But faithfully, I will wait
Yes, I will wait

I will serve You while I'm waiting
I will worship while I'm waiting
I will serve You while I'm waiting
I will worship while I'm waiting
I will serve you while I'm waiting
I will worship while I'm waiting on You, Lord

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Beyond Faithful

Have you ever found yourself feeling like you are just "going through the motions," stuck in a rut that you just cannot seem to get out of, despite the desire to do so? Perhaps you may have wondered if your prayers are hitting the ceiling and bouncing right back down only to be heard by your own ears? Maybe you have found yourself so far from that thing we call holiness that you are sure God must have turned His back, ashamed to look your way? It may not be actions keeping you so far away, but a matter of the heart.

No? No one has felt that way? Oh. Well, I know I have, far too many times. It isn't even always an action issue, but the condition of my heart that causes the problem. Then, of course, because I know just how black my heart can be, just how horrid my attitude has been, and the viciousness of my thoughts, my own head begins to list off all of the reasons that God should not and will not hear my pleas anymore. Or is it my own mind? Perhaps Satan sees those weaknesses in me as well, and takes that opportunity to whisper those lies into my ear. The lie that God will not listen. The lie that God does not care. The lie that God has turned His back on me.

So, once again, I throw myself at the feet of God, pleading for forgiveness and for Him to cleanse me, to renew me. I spend time in prayer - something that is so simple yet many times seems so difficult. Then I dry my tears, and come out of my room and sit at the computer to check our emails. Rather than checking the daily comic strip, I go to the daily Bible verses first. A step in the right direction. My ever-faithful heavenly Daddy has, once again, heard my cries, and in His ultimate goodness, speaks to my heart. Our verses for the day are these:

God is Gracious and Forgiving
So Repent... Turn from Sin

This is why it is said:
"Wake up, O sleeper, rise from the dead,
and Christ will shine on you."

Be very careful, then, how you live-
not as unwise but as wise,
making the most of every opportunity,
because the days are evil.

Therefore do not be foolish,
but understand what the Lord's will is.

Ephesians 5:14-17 NIV

Repent, then, and turn to God,
so that your sins may be wiped out,
that times of refreshing may come from the Lord,

Acts 3:19 NIV

Peter replied, "Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.

The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off - for all whom the Lord our God will call."

Acts 2:38,39 NIV

I am again amazed at God's faithfulness despite my utter lack thereof. Now this song by Kari Jobe is playing throughout our house:

Come to me, you weary one.
And I will give you rest.
I will give you rest.
Come to me, you weary one.
And I will give you rest.
I will give you rest.
For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.
Take me upon you, I will give you rest.

Come to me, you broken one.
And I will give you peace.
I will give you peace.
Come to me, you broken one.
And I will give you peace.
I will give you peace.
I will calm your waters, and I will whisper,
"Peace be still."
Take me upon you, I will give you peace.

Come to me, you burdened one.
And I will give you joy.
I will give you joy.
Come to me, you burdened one.
And I will give you joy.
I will give you joy.
You will rise like eagles, and my joy will be your strength.
Take me upon you, I will give you joy.

Come to me
I have been waiting for you here.
He has been waiting for you here.
Come. Come to Him.
Come and find your peace.
Come and find your rest.
Come and find your joy.
He is waiting here for you.
He is waiting here for you with open arms,
To hold you, to embrace your heart, to love you.
He is waiting here.

If you ever feel the way I have been feeling lately, run to Him. That voice whispering in your ear that God is not listening or that His back is turned is an absolute lie. God is beyond faithful.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

The Birthday Boy

Hard to believe that on this day eleven years ago, I was sitting in a hospital bed calmly talking to our friends. On this day, eleven years ago, I had been in said hospital bed for two weeks, trying to keep a very tiny body inside. Eleven years ago, sitting in that bed, talking to those friends, I had no idea what that little tiny body would be like today. I had no idea how full the joys would be because of him. Our life would not be as full, or as loud, without Bud. So, favorite son of mine, happy birthday. We love you and cherish you and would never in a million years, ever trade you for a turtle. No matter what anyone says.

Friday, May 08, 2009


With all the layoffs and "voluntary leave of absences" at work I thought this was so apropos. It's a good reminder to keep the right attitude and chin up and continue to trust God. Plus it's cute. :)

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

The Red Sea

I've heard a story a time or two of a people who were in bondage. This people cried out to God and He sent a deliverer for them. This deliverer went to their captor and asked him nicely to release the people. First he said yes, then he said no. God pushed the captors buttons and he changed his mind again. As soon as God left the captor alone again, he changed his mind again. This happened several times when finally, the captor had enough. God killed the captor's firstborn son, and the people were out of there! They traveled quite a ways with God's guidance and suddenly found themselves between a rock and a hard place. Or rather, between their former captor's very angry army and a impassable sea. This people began to grumble and complain to and about their deliverer and told him that they would have been better off if he had left them in captivity. "Who cares what God promised?? Look where we are now!" Yet, in this peoples darkest hour, God stepped in and parted that sea, and the people crossed over dry land into safety. Their former captor's army tried to follow, only to drown in the sea that God was no longer parting.

Yes, that is an old Bible story, but is God any different now? I don't think so. Are you in captivity now, waiting for God to send your deliverance? He's sending it. Or were you in captivity and enjoying your freedom only to find yourself in what feels like your darkest hour? "God, what happened? And things were going so well! Now look!! I'm backed up against this roiling sea and my enemy is coming in fast!" Ah, but God is there. We may not always see it. We may not even always feel it. In the middle of the storm or the fight, there are times we cannot see the end. But God sees. God knows. And He will always fulfill His promises. ALWAYS. I don't care how dark it is. Chin up. Your deliverer is coming.

My Deliverer is coming, my Deliverer is standing by....
My Deliverer is coming, my Deliverer is standing by...
He will never break His promise, He has written it across the sky!
My Deliverer is coming, my Deliverer is standing by...

My Deliverer is coming, my Deliverer is standing by....
My Deliverer is coming, my Deliverer is standing by...
He will never break His promise, though the sun should break faith with
the sky!
My Deliverer is coming, my Deliverer is standing by...

I will never doubt His promise, though I doubt my heart, though I doubt
my mind!
My Deliverer is coming, my Deliverer is standing by!

~ Rich Mullens

"The Lord is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge" Psalms 18:2

Saturday, April 18, 2009


This afternoon was so beautiful and warm, I was able to hang laundry out on the line for the first time this year. As I repetitively reached in the basket and then turned, stretching out to hang the next garment, I began to think of how I had missed this simple task and about the change in the seasons that was required for me to be able to do it again. I personally love the change from winter to spring, the gradual move into summer, and the gentle cooling back into fall. The only season I don't always greet with absolute joy is winter, but I know there are others that wish there was more of that cold, white season. It's not that I completely dislike it, I just prefer the warmer weather and the sun. My thoughts then turned to the similar lack of enthusiasm I have towards other changes in life and realized that, without changes, we can't enter a new season in our lives. Sometimes we have to face our personal winters, a time for the old things to die off, so that the new things that God wants to grow in us and bring us into can be birthed. We cannot have spring without winter. As I sat down to write this particular post, I glanced at our sidebar and reread our "Words that encourage us" verse and the first half struck me with how pertinent it is to our life right now. When I posted it, the way it spoke to my heart was of a newness in worship. I read it today and was blown away with the significance and appropriateness of the verse to our situation today. Batman and I are facing many changes right now. Some came somewhat easily - with a significant amount of prayer and seeking God's direction. There are others that we are staring in the face and saying, "ok, God, this is what You have placed before us, this is what You have impressed on our hearts, um.... now what? We need you to provide a way...." Sometimes the things of God seem absolutely crazy and absurd, but one thing He has promised is to ALWAYS make a way. He will never ever direct us one way and then leave us stranded. He sees the big picture and His solution is, in all reality, amazingly simple. Maybe not to us, but to God, it is a simple as moving His hand.

God asks: Do you see what I see? (not always) Do you hear what I hear? (I'd like to think so) Do you know what I know? (in part) Do you want what I want? (oh yes!!)

I leave you with our verse that encourages us right now. Perhaps YOU are facing changes in your life. Maybe it is your winter right now, or perhaps your are coming out of that winter season and coming into spring. Whatever God has for you, remember that change is good. Change is what brings about the new growth that God has for you. Will you not be aware of it?

"Behold, I will do something new,
Now it will spring forth;
Will you not be aware of it?
I will even make a roadway in the wilderness,
Rivers in the desert.
The beasts of the field will glorify Me,
The jackals and the ostriches,
Because I have given waters in the wilderness
And rivers in the desert,
To give drink to My chosen people.
The people whom I formed for Myself
Will declare My praise."

Isaiah 43:19-21 NASB

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

The Test

Have you ever wondered how to pass a test? I have. Or how much hurt and disappointment you can go though before it stops hurting? Or disappointing? Yup, done that, too. How many times can you get cut, or stabbed, or punched before you just stop feeling it? And how many times do you have to keep responding right? That is one lesson I would rather be able to finish with the statement to my children of, "do as I say, not as I do." But that isn't really very good parenting. So how much? How many times do you have to go through the same test? And how on earth does one pass it, because, if it is all the same to everyone else, I would really rather be done going around the mountain now. I'd rather just be done taking the hits rather than wondering when they won't hurt any more. I'd rather just pass and move on to some other test that might have different punches and knives involved. I'd really rather stop bleeding for awhile. Or maybe have no more tears to fall on the open pages of my book or in my cup of vanilla coffee. At least for now.