Friday, February 29, 2008

Sun Bathing!

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Sunshine! Warmth! That radiating heat that just feels scrumptious

on your face, and your entire body!

Growing up in a coastal town, and having a skin tone that tans easily,

I started sun bathing when I was like 9-10 years old.

Once motherhood came, moments to sun bathe have been F-E-W!

Because you always have to watch for the kids, make sure they're safe.

But we just built that back deck, and while I haven't been ready to lay out

and sun bathe (even that word, "bathe" bathe in the sunshine, in the golden warmth!)

just yet. I have enjoyed greatly going out and sitting in the sunshine.

Everytime I get that sun-beating-down-on-me-feel-good-warmth,

I just wonder "how on earth I was able to stay away as long as I have"?

Last week, I was struck with the idea that throughout history

pagan cultures have worshipped the Sun.

I can understand how they could be so decieved.

I don't mean that in a sacrilegious sense, and I know you inow that,

but just in case you are new here, that won't happen here! :)

But, the Sun (so I understand) is a picture of The Son,

and the moon which reflects the light of the sun, and has no light of its own,

is a picture of The Church, which reflects the light of The Son,

and has no light of its own.

Lately, I have been feeling that warmth and thinking

"Lord, I need You just like this sunlight, I need you to warm my heart.

This world is a cold place without you.

Help me tap into you more, so that I don't get hard,

so I don't get dry and shrivel up.

Warm me, Lord, bathe me in Your warmth.

How did I ever stay away this long?

Because I need you ALL the time,

wherever I go, whatever I do!"

"And it shall be in that day, says the Lord, that you will call Me Ishi [my Husband], and you shall no more call Me Baali [my Baal]."

Hosea 2:16

I LOVE Shiny Red Metal things!

I'm a late bloomer when it comes to coffee.
I think in large part that is because I grew up when drinking coca-colas
was becoming mainstream, common.
As a matter of fact, I should say I became a young adult at that time.
Because the times I grew up in, drinking a coca-cola was a big treat,
and not something that was done daily.
At. All.
I could go on with that.
About how the American diet has greatly declined.
But, since I am a huge contributor to that, I won't go there today!
Let's just say that with my sons 9 years apart, that makes 20 years of being the
home in the neighborhood that the kids get homemade cookies,
cakes and whatever the flavor of candy is that we are into at that time!
(I've actually greatly improved about the candy the past year...
metabolism is not what it once was).

But since drinking sodas was such a BIG DEAL, when I moved out and got married at 18,

I could drink soda any day I wanted. Long as I could afford it!



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For years, drinking coke, Dr Pepper, Mr Pibb, Mountain Dew, Sunkist, Code Red, Vault...

These were my caffeine of choice.

Now my parents on the other hand have always been coffee and hot tea people. Their caffeine had to be hot.

I never could make the leap. I remember my Mom telling me when I was in my 30s, that when I grew up I would move to hot beverages.
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I also remember laughing smugly, as I recall!

Never happen, I said!

So, anywho, about 4 years ago my husband and I started wanting coffee during the winter. Quickly that became a spring, summer, winter, fall requirement!

Is that snickering I hear out there in Bloggyland?

We have gone through 3 coffee pots in that time. And the third one, was on its last legs, when I finally ordered it's replacement. Poor thing was a little $12 coffee pot, that we ran night and day (pot in the morning pot after dinner) for over one year.

But I wanted this certain kind of coffee pot. Walmart had it in the store for a while.

Now you can only get it from them on line. Since they have this particular pot for the best price I found. I ordered from them on-line, for the in-store pick-up thing they have.

The only problem with that is, that I thought I would order, then happily trot down to Walmart in about 3 days and bring my pretty new pot home.

Wrong!

2 weeks they say! ???????

Don't they know this is the instant society?

The age of drive through funeral parlors and do-it yourself divorces?

And 2 weeks for a coffee pot? Yikes!

Seriously, though, all kidding aside, I wasn't worried about it.

Because, I'm NOT addicted to coffee. No. Not at all.

I can take it or leave it!

Yeah! That's what I thought anyway!

I had not taken into account how I have come to rely on a hot cup of coffee, strong enough to stand up and walk, piping hot fresh, with a little Hershey's Chocolate Syrup and a little sprinkle of cinnamon!

I hear you all out there! I know you're laughing! :)

This has replaced my sweet tooth craving. Much less calories than anything else I use to get into! Trust me!

So, hopefully I will not gain back the 7lbs I have lost since the beginning of the year, BEFORE my beautiful, shiny RED Mr Coffee gets here!

Ya'll need to pray for me! :)

If you should hear of a woman in jeans too tight, storming Wal-mart with a water pistol, you may want to consider me on hiatus for a bit!

Kidding,Ya'll! I'll be good, promise!

Happy Friday!

Thursday, February 28, 2008

To Manipulate or Not to Manipulate..

Saturday was a very busy day. Nothing new there.
However, for the FIRST time in my life, I colored someone's hair.
I had NEVER before done such a thing.
Now don't get me wrong,
I have been getting MY hair colored since I was 24.
Necessity required it! ;)
Now, confession time. I guess you see my title?
Yes, paragon of motherhood that I am, NOT! :)
Living Outside the Box girl that I am (I WISH, I STRIVE, I TRY!)
I attend a church where we preach the whole Word of God.
We don't compromise the message of the Gospel to "reach more people".
(people really DO respect and want the truth!)
We also do NOT dress it in religious behavior,
at least as much as we know how to refrain from that.
You like jeans? Come on in. You have tatoos, body piercing and purple hair? Come on in!
It's your heart that counts.
That you have a heart after God.
You have a past? Baggage?
So did Saul, so did Mary Magdelene.
Still struggling to get the past OUT of the now and INTO the past?
Come on in! Become a student of The Word.
Find a place to serve. Grow. Learn.
Communion is my favorite thing.
I actually tear up.
I generally sit near the front.
It distracts me to sit elsewhere.
So, it is my wonderfully good fortune to see the people from the back
all the way to the front, one row at a time, file forward for communion.
It's young, old, dressed up in the Sunday best,
dressed down in the latest trend in grunge,
rich, poor, in between,
every color, every style.
To me it is TRUE beauty!
It makes me immeasureably grateful that God works in us,
and teaches us how to come together,
even though many of us, (you would think),
would not have so much in common.
Until we talk, until we share stories.
Then we all find, we 're not so different after all.
Not in what really matters.
That He made us.
That we all have sinned and fallen short of the Glory of God.
That Jesus is our hope, our salvation.
That He likes the many flavors we come in!
He made us to be different and diverse for good reason!
Now, all that said. I got a chance to "practice what I preach"!
I failed. Miserably!
No one would have known.
But, in my heart, I know, I chickened out!
As you can see, my Wild One,
who is into the whole music/skater thing,
was ready to have his dark brown hair dyed black, and streaked red.
I completely didn't mind for myself.
But, as you may recall from this post,
I often choke when it comes to how even the potential of stress,
between my conservative husband (whom I adore)
and my conservative & wild young child may play out.
Jason just likes all sorts of different things!
And we have always loved that he does.
But, since the teen angst has come to visit our house for the second time in our lives,
I was afraid (shameful to say) how my husband would handle this.
I FEARED this so much (to my everlasting chagrin),
that I seized on the opportunity to "minimize the impact" -
(you may pause here to translate this as manipulate the situation),
by informing young son, that putting a hair straightener,
black hair color, then bleached streaks then red over the bleach,
would be too many processes at one time.
The processes would have to be staggered about 1 month apart,
or he could do serious damage to his hair.
Were these facts true? YES, emphatically so.
Was I secretly glad to have less to inform my husband about?
YES! Shamefully so!
Was my young son really hurt to know that once again,
something he has wanted, thought he was going to attain was out of his reach?
YES, Emphatically so.
Did he take this as a sign of personal failure on his part? Yes.
Was I horribly disgusted to realize I had taken a completely healthy situation
and made it a big stinking mess?
Yes! Emphatically so.
What to do? I prayed! Like urgent smoke signals to Heaven.
"Lord, I have done it again. PLEASE intervene for the sake of my son!
I get what I did wrong, what to do now"?
Enter The Lord, riding on a white horse, who is named faithful and true...
(inspired) Me: Jason, lets just do the color, all the colors you wanted,
(I won't tell you what he said red streaks in brown hair would look like!)
I will go back and get the black tomorrow,
we can do the straightener in a month or so.
Jason (with the reluctance that comes from many disappointments):
I dunno. (then eventually) OK, let's do it, Mom!
Me (relieved beyond measure!): You got it kid!

Now for the REAL gift! Not only did we do it.
But this whole conversation was in front of my Honey, his Dad.
Who turned up in the room expectedly.
Guess how he handled it?
Wonderfully, he was such an encouragement to Jason.
Guess who wins the Donkey-butt prize? Yeah, me!
Why oh why could I not just trust God, trust my husband,
and not make things unnecessarily complicated?

Now at least two of his friends are getting permission
from their parents for me to do THEIR hair!

Is God just crazy patient with us? Tender good?

"Fill up and complete my joy by living in harmony
and being of the same mind and one in purpose,
having the same love, being in full accord
and of one harmonious mind and intention.
Do nothing from factional motives

[through contentiousness, strife, selfishness, or for unworthy ends]
or prompted by conceit and empty arrogance.
Instead, in the true spirit of humility (lowliness of mind)
let each regard the others as better than and superior to himself
[thinking more highly of one another than you do of yourselves]."
Philippians 2:2-3

By the way, we touched up the sides yesterday, and made them more black.
So, where you see brown in the pics, it is now jet black. He is pleased as punch!

I love this kid! I betchya' couldn't tell! And His Dad, too!

Ya'll still love me, right? I'll learn! Eventually! :)

He is With Us! We Are NOT Alone! And He Won't Let Us Down!



Don't you love it when you just are surrounded by a certain theme?
When you "bump into" a certain topic, scripture,
or word over a short period in time?
What I love about such divine occurrences,
is that it makes it difficult
for me to miss God's concern for me, and His desire to communicate with me.
It assures me, that when I need to hear from God, He is near and He won't fail me.
I was hit by just such a bevy of circumstances over Sunday and Monday,
and I wanted to share them with you all, so hopefully you can be encouraged, too!
Sunday in church, we were having a special service.
Our community is very near Daytona.
Daytona Beach, home of Bike Week.
There is one every spring in March, and one every October
For about 7 years we have had a special service,
which makes a concerted effort to reach out to the motorcycle community.
We always have a great time, and special music,
and after service there is always lots of good food and activities for young and old.
This year Pastor had been working on a message that was good, and timely.
But, at 4:00 am Sunday morning, he was really impressed by the Lord
that many people are in a tight place right now.
Feeling the pinch, the pressure of life.
He felt impressed that God wanted him to give a different message,
than the one prepared.
The message was simple.
"I won't let you down."
"I won't let you down."
Just let that sink in.
Who DOESN'T have a situation that requires knowledge of
God's mercy, care and compassion?
On Monday when I visited my dear friend Leslie at Do You Weary Like I Do.
Imagine my delight to see that their church service had featured a song
that really moved her, moved many in the congregation.
You Never Let Go!
She posted a video of Matt Redman singing the song,
it's really worth the trip to see.
Through other circumstances this theme continued to come at me Sunday evening and Monday.
And while I have such a long to-do list of things I am leaning into the Lord about.
(Don't we all?)
I couldn't put my finger exactly on any one of them,
(maybe several, but not just one! :)
Here are the words to the song, "You Never Let Go",
I pray they will ring in your heart.
Because He really won't, He won't let you down, He won't let you go,
He won't leave you or forsake you!
You Never Let Go
Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death
Your perfect love is casting out fear
And even when I’m caught in the middle of the storms of this life
I won’t turn back
I know You are near
And I will fear no evil
For my God is with me
And if my God is with me
Whom then shall I fear?
Whom then shall I fear?

Chorus:
Oh no, You never let go
Through the calm and through the storm
Oh no, You never let go
In every high and every low
Oh no, You never let go
Lord, You never let go of me

And I can see a light that is coming for the heart that holds on
A glorious light beyond all compare
And there will be an end to these troubles
But until that day comes
We’ll live to know
You here on the earth
Chorus:
Yes, I can see a light that is coming for the heart that holds on
And there will be an end to these troubles
But until that day comes
Still I will praise You, still I will praise You
Chorus: (2x’s)
"Go then and make disciples of all the nations,
baptizing them into the name of the Father
and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,
Teaching them to observe everything that I have commanded you,
and behold, I am with you all the days
(perpetually, uniformly, and on every occasion),
to the [very] close and consummation of the age.
Amen (so let it be)"
Matthew 28:19-20
For more read Joshua 1:5, Hebrews 13:5,
And as a bonus:
"He reached from on high, He took me; He drew me out of many waters"
Psalms 18:16

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Free to Fly Award - Living a Beautiful Life From the Inside Out!


Yippee!
FOREVER and absolute EVER
I have wanted to be able to make an award that I could share
with some of those blogs that consistently
make me laugh, make me think,
and inspire me to grow
and to reach.
The types of blogs that do this for me have a few things in common.
Like a butterfly becomes beautiful,
by living a quiet life, hidden for a season,
while beauty develops on the inside.
That same butterfly has to go through a season of struggle
before it is Free to Fly!
Once it IS Free to Fly,
that butterfly NOW has a beauty we all are blessed to see.
Everywhere the butterfly goes,
it spreads pollen and makes it possible for flowers to bloom
and fruit to be developed.
You could say it leaves a trail of life in its wake!
What a beautiful thought!
Butterflies don't go around trying to be beautiful.
They don't say "hey, look at me".
They just ARE, they just DO, they just LIVE.
All that time spent hidden in a cocoon,
was not wasted.
The time and effort spent struggling to get out of the cocoon
made the butterfly strong and ABLE to fly!
I have been blessed to find many women through blogging,
who have allowed the struggles of a hidden life,
serving in ways that are often unseen and seemingly inconsequential
(judging from their lack of entourage, paparazzi, and assistants!
That IS what our culture uses as the standard for recognizing importance, right?)
to make them strong, make them able to find the humor,
able to see the big picture and to find the purpose
in the everyday matters of investing in the lives around us.
Their ability to focus on the things that REALLY matter,
and to allow the struggles of life to strengthen them,
leaves everyone they come in contact with a deposit of "pollen".
A little dose of the grace that is unique to them,
which adds wisdom, humor, truth
and just a little whiff
of the fragrance of Christ that is unique to them!
They are some wives or mothers, grandmothers, daughters, and nieces.
They fulfill all sorts of roles in and outside the home.
In their church and outside their church.
The world is a more beautiful and abundant place
because of the daily choices they make.
There are two scriptures for this - they work together:
"He has made everything beautiful in its time.
He also has planted eternity in men's hearts and minds
[a divinely implanted sense of a purpose working through the ages
which nothing under the sun but God alone can satisfy],
yet so that men cannot find out what God has done from the beginning to the end."
Ecclesiastes 3:11
&
John 10:10
"The thief comes only in order to steal and kill and destroy.
I came that they may have and enjoy life,
and have it in abundance (to the full, till it overflows)."
So, the list is long of people who will be awarded this.
It's my hope that you will each pass this award on to 5 people
who have impacted you by their blogging.
There's no rules except that I hope you enjoy your award.
Share it if you like.
Not everybody has the time to do all that entails,
so dont's sweat it if you're not into that...
you have flowers to pollinate! :)

Friday, February 22, 2008

Blogging With a Purpose!


Hi, Ya'll! I hope your weekend is getting off to a great start!
Renee' over at 2 Peas in a Pod certainly got mine off to a great start!

She was awarded the Blogging With a Purpose Award,


Renee' has a great site that has all sorts of goodies;
from interesting posts, and yummy recipes, to book and movie reviews,
along with Bible studies and Home School tips.
Yes, ALL that and it's really simply presented, and not cluttered.

I wish I had the skill she does!


She was kind enough to share this with me. It means a lot to me,
because the purpose of my blogging has been on my mind much lately,

(yes, I know, it IS crowded up there at times!).

It's important to me to be purposeful in all that I do.
So, getting her message about this really made my day!

Here are the rules for this award:

1. Awarded parties must nominate five people who have not received the award.
2. The blogs that receive the award must serve some purpose.
3. In their post about the award they need to link back to this entry.
4. Awarded parties must post the award banner on their site. The banner must remain linked to the above linked site.


I am sharing this with 5 Bloggy Friends whose blogs uplift, enlighten and encourage!

Leslie @ Do You Weary Like I Do?

Tiffany @ Southern Sass

Nicki @ Three Girly Girls

Caroline @ Letters From a Prodigal Daughter

Karen @ Surviving Motherhood

Thanks to all you of you who visit and leave comments!

I enjoy our visits more than you know!

I hope to get my February Give-Away post up tomorrow.

Monday at the latest.

Happy Friday, Ya'll!

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

The Year of Romance - February



What would romance be with out the gift of laughter?
I don't think it's possible to make a marriage fulfilling
without having a sense of humor, and without a sense of joy,
the more childlike the better.

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So much happens in life, you go through so many disappointments,
hardships, and sometimes even tragedies occur.

Sometimes one or both of you make terrible mistakes.

If you can't learn to laugh at yourselves, in a healthy way,
I think these things take their toll on you.
You become hardened, cynical, and even bitter.
I know for myself, the unhappiest times in my marriage,
one thing that is a common factor, is that tendancy that creeps in to get so stuck
on my "rightness" and his "wrongness" that I don't think anything is funny.
At. All.

Now, we've been together so long, that I recognize the signs so much quicker,
almost immediately.
And sometimes it isn't really what my flesh wants,
but, by now my head knows,
"uh-uh, not doing this, I WILL have peace,
I WILL do what it takes to reconcile this, so the laughter can come back".
For us, laughter is an indicator that the walls are down, the hearts are open.
There is reciprocation.
Because if you will truly share genuine laughter,
you have been let in, and you have let them in.
Laughter is intimate. It's healing. It seems to even change your mindset.
It's like when you can do the work necessary to be able to laugh,
something happens in your heart and mind to let hope come to life, let it breathe.
No hope, no good!
Want hope? Find your laughter.
I can't tell you how. I know it comes more naturally for some than others.
But everyone needs it. And everyone has the capability.
Whether your humor is sophisticated or juvenile,
as long as it is uplifting and not mean-spirited,
then you got IT going on.

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I can't tell you the things our family has gone through,
that our ability to find humor has truly been a soothing influence in.
A healthy respite from the pressures of what was at stake.

Think about it, can you talk bad about that person,
that you just shared laughter with yesterday about your foibles?
Naw, that wouldn't feel right would it?
Could you even consider letting that man at the store, or at work,
or the gym or even church, flirt with you,
when you just got through sharing laughter,
about something personal and intimate with your husband that morning?
No, I can't see how either.
But, if you are withholding laughter.
If you are refusing to let the walls down,
if you steadfastly refuse to encourage him,
and not give him the satisfaction of seeing he CAN make you laugh,
especially after he just embarrassed you like that,
THEN you might be so hungry for laughter,
that you WILL let that other man make you laugh.
And it might feel so good to laugh again,
that well, who knows,
but it's a dangerous road.


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This is SO not what I intended to post on, at all!
But it must've needed saying because
it came after much prayer and re-committing this project to Christ.
So, let the giggles, the snickers, and the sweetness of your lives together
begin to be renewed, restored, and released!
I can't tell you enough how very much I appreciate
ALL of your participation.
I have been inspired, and learned so much from those of you, who have either signed up to do your own posts, or taken the time to not only read, but make comments, either at my site or others who are particpating.
I am humblesd and ecstatic over so many of us focusing on how we can strenghten our marriages, and be a blessing to our spouses. You can NEVER go wrong in that investment! God will always see to it that you are covered
some how, some way!
I encourage you to visit some of our participants who have already signed , or will later this week when their post is ready. You will be enteratained, edified and encouraged!
If you would like to particpate this month, please feel free to sign Mr Linky and leave a comment.
Happy Romancing, Ya'll!




Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Memory Verse Monday - Make it a Really Good Day!




When I was a very young, 18 year old housewife,
I always liked to have the TV on to "keep me company".
I liked to start the day with Good Morning America,
with David Hartman & Joan Lunden.

My favorite part was how he would close it,
"Make it a really good day".
That just spoke to something inside me. I KNEW that everyday,
we have a part to play in what sort of life we have.

Looking back, I smile to think that God was able to speak to me,
and teach me through an ordinary TV show!
Now, as a person abiding in Jesus, or at least striving to,
(sometimes that feels a bit like a salmon swimming upstream!),
I realize what a biblical concept that is.
"This is the day which the LORD hath made;
we will rejoice and be glad in it."
Psalm 118:24
&

"Enter into his gates with thanksgiving,
and into his courts with praise:
be thankful unto him, and bless his name."
Psalm 100:4
I don't know anything substanial about Mr Hartman,
other than when he left the show, he was missed.
He had an enthusiasm that was contagious, inspirational even.

I don't think that is something a person can fake.
Since he was a daily inspiration to me, at a very formative and vulnerable time in my life, I thought I would include some info from a New York Times bio on him.


"Mr. Hartman says he was endowed with his creative spirit and thirst for knowledge by his parents, particularly his father, Cy, a former minister, who told him: "You've got a gift of a thousand minutes waiting for you today. Don't waste one of them." He hasn't wasted many. Growing up in Rhode Isand, Mr. Hartman played six musical instruments, starred in baseball and studied opera. He went on to gain a degree in economics at Duke. An expression of his enthusiasm became Mr. Hartman's sign-off on "Good Morning America." Each morning, he would say to his viewers, "Make it a really good day!" "


This is my Memory Verse Monday (a day late!).
I chose these verses because this year I am focusing on a few things.
One is to seek to be consistent in giving thanks and praise (living a life of gratitude)
and two is that I continue to seek to abide in Him.
And
If I am going to truly abide in Him,
then I ENTER into His presence through praise and thanksgiving!


Memory Verse Monday comes from Karen at Karen's Ramblings.
Be sure and check her out, or sign up to participate if you like!
The more the merrier!

Here is a great song called "Happy" by Ayiesha Woods, I really dig her music.

Enjoy!




Monday, February 18, 2008

Song in My Heart Today!

Today has been such a great day!
I love a clean house, I LOVE when we have my son's friends over!
I love to make breakfast for them!
I have a great book to read!
And I have been playing channel 826 (we have DirecTV),
and it plays pop/rock Christian music.
Nothing gets me like music does!
This particular song, I decided to tie-up my dial-up internet service
looking for the perfect You-Tube video for.
The things we do for love!
Hope you enjoy!



What Book Are You Reading Now?


"The Queen of Nifty Topics & Questions"
(you all may remember that
I'm gaga over the opportunities to come up with names!),
was so kind as to tag me for a Me-Me that is new to me.

I just spotted it last week, and I was like, Ooo! Pick me!

Of course, I did manage to keep such comments to myself!
Aren't you proud?

But I was hopeful!
It's called the Book Me-Me
Here are the rules:

1. Pick up the nearest book of at least 123 pages.
2. Open the book to page 123.
3. Find the 5th sentence.
4. Post the next 3 sentences.
5. Tag 5 people


As some of you may know I am reading
by Gary Chapman.

I wish I had had gotten it 5 years ago, when I first heard about it.

It's worth gold. Truly.
So here goes:

Our teens are just like Kayla-in a state of radical transition.

When a person is in a state of transition-
things in their external world are changing
while their inner world of thoughts, feelings, and desires
are in a state of disequilibrium-the person responds differently.

Think of yourself the night before you're leaving on an extended trip.

That's all you get!

Please, run do not walk, to get this book if you have a child 11 or 12 or even older.

You have no idea how the changes sneak up on you,
and right off the bat, I saw what we have been clueless about.

But, that is for another post, Ya'll! :)


I am tagging:


If any of you have too much on your plate, No Pressure!
Save it for when you are in a "dry spot"!
Blogging is for fun, not for stress!
Happy Monday, Ya'll!

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Send The Foot-Washers!

Recently (say the last 6 weeks or so),
Several things, incidents, conversations, observations
have brought out an irritability in me.
Yesterday in my quiet time, I was basically "mully-grubbing"
about these things. Because they were all of a similar nature,
and were all underneath my skin.
I wasn't at all happy with the feelings it brought out in me.
These things happened to be occurrences within my church family,
which I do love.
And I am committed to this congregation.
But, in any family, you go through these things,
transition, growing pains, etc.
I think we really miss the boat,
when we think fallen (though redeemed) people,
will be able to never let us down.
On the contrary I think God does some of His best work in us,
when we overcome differences, show mercy, and love the unlovely
(and we're all unlovely at times, let's face it!).
In other words, He likes to stretch us! Mold us. Refine us.
Move us OUT of our self-imposed comfort zone,
where we like everybody, and everybody likes us,.
and we never have to go anywhere or do anything uncomfortable.
Church family, is just like your family that you're born to, and married into.
You love them. You bleed when they are cut, cry when they are hurt,
and celebrate their successes.
And JUST like that VERY SAME family,
you get frustrated with them, and they with you!

These things that were bringing out the "unlovely" in me,
should just fuel my prayers.
And I AM working on that.
But, more to the truth of it, yesterday in my quiet time,
I was just a little disgusted and disheartened,
both at myself for feeling the way I did, and at the situations themselves.
But God is so cool!
There is something I have occasionally felt impressed in my prayer time
in the last 3-5 months to pray about.
And to be truthful, I didn't completely understand it, but, since it was Biblical, I did.
It was generally always when I prayed at church. I remember the first time.
Send the Foot-Washers, Lord
Send the Foot-Washers
Help us
Let Your Spirit teach us to be Foot-Washers
Well, somehow as I was whining, I mean to say talking with the Lord,
about this yukky stuff in my head and heart,
SOMEHOW He was able to get through to me,
to connect the dots between this and the Foot-Washers.
As I pondered this, wondering how it fit,
I could almost feel the hint of a wry question,
like "OOOO-OOO I Know!
How 'bout you read about it in the Bible!
You know, instead of just remembering it!
Maybe there's something there you've never noticed!
I mean when is the last time you actually read it,
and paid attention with new eyes to it!"
What a novel idea! Sometimes I wonder about myself!
So I did.
I thought I would share my observations wth you.
Because I don't see anything we are going through as unique.
The Word say our trials are not unique,
but we all have these things in common.
I believe we can look at how the 12 Disciples behaved at the Last Supper,
and see a glimpse of the Body of Christ today.
Where I attend and serve, and where you attend and serve.
First of all, there was a betrayer in the midst. Judas.
Every group has one. Judas was more concerend about money.
The Gospel of John shows that.
We can explore more about him another day.
There was a concern about who would be greatest among them.
The disciples closest to Jesus were involved in this.
THIS is the part that gets me. And I shouldn't let it.
If the disciples did it, we will too!
If it bothers me so much, that probably means I'm guilty of it, too!
which REALLY just makes me want to throw my hands in the air!
"Jesus knowing
that the Father had given all things into his hands,
and that he was come from God,
and went to God;
He riseth from supper,
and laid aside his garments;
and took a towel, and girded himself.
After that he poureth water into a bason,
and began to wash the disciples' feet,
and to wipe them with the towel
wherewith he was girded."
John 13:3-5
I love what Jesus' solution was though.
He put aside His garments.
The verse actually says he laid them aside.
Deliberately.
To lay them aside, to me, represents something significant.
Our clothes are such a large part of our identity,
how we are viewed by others.
He laid that aside.
I love that this is after verse 3,
which shows us that He KNEW WHO He was.
He KNEW where He was headed.
And He put that aside, to minister to their needs.
He was not too puffed up.
(I know that sounds horrible to be saying about Our Jesus),
but, He IS our example.
He took the time, He didn't consider this humble,
dirty teaching opportunity, beneath Him.
When He girded Himself with the towel,
He really tied it on firmly,
from what I could see in the Strong's Concordance.
Which shows a determination.
A Determination which I'm sadly waffling on lately.
So, I am going to be submitting to some heart surgery.
Wish me luck!
"So after he had washed their feet,
and had taken his garments, and was set down again,
he said unto them, Know ye what I have done to you?
Ye call me Master and Lord: and ye say well; for so I am.
If I then, your Lord and Master, have washed your feet;
ye also ought to wash one another's feet.
For I have given you an example,
that ye should do as I have done to you.
Verily, verily, I say unto you,
The servant is not greater than his lord;
neither he that is sent greater than he that sent him.
If ye know these things, happy are ye if ye do them."
John 13:12-17
Lord, I really truly do not like people who are more concerend with being recognized as a leader, or close to the people they perceive to be at the top of the heap. I don't think that's love. I don't like when people are being shrewd and calculating and having all sorts of negative opinions, in the name of input.
And above all, Lord, I don't like how this behavior makes me feel and think,
and makes me want to withdraw.
You didn't make me to be a quitter.
And you sure didn't make me to be a judge.
You made me to be a foot-washer.
You made me to love. You made me to serve.
I am willing, Lord to be changed, please change me, change my heart.
Help me to pray correctly.
Help me to surrender my viewpoints on this and get my eyes on You,
and off of everyone else!
Forgive me for getting it all out of whack. Make me clean.
Help us to all be connected to You and to each other in a good, and Godly way.
So that the lost and the hurt will see the good that we do and give glory to YOU!

Saturday Smiles!

You know, I have no idea if these are photo shopped or what.
They came via an e-mail. And I just thought they were hilarious!
So here are a few for your viewing pleasure.
You may have gotten the e-mail from someone already,
if so I apologize for the repeat!

Ever feel like this? Like the wheels are turning,
but you are not moving forward?
Now you know, you could be stuck on a rock!
Why didn't I think of that sooner?

Really? Are you kidding me?
She just looks so proud!
I wanna know how sister-girl got to the dock, without getting wet.
That's quite a stretch!

Come on! Who among us has not thought about it,
at least in our younger day!
You know, "I bet I could squeeze right in there..."
Now we know how that would have ended...
very badly apparently!
G-night, Ya'll!
Must. Have. Sleep!

Friday, February 15, 2008

Warning! The Mushy Stuff Is Here! Enter at Your Own Risk!


Happy Friday, Ya'll!
I don't have a big reason for this post,
except to mush over my Honey!
So, proceed no further if you're not in the mood for mush!
Please forgive me!
You know, the 19th is just around the corner,
and I will be posting the February installment of
The Year of Romance.
But, today my Honey had to go back to work after a few days off.
And I'm just feeling mushy! You know that mushy feeling you get sometimes,
of "How did I ever get so blessed?".

That's one hard-working man!
Originally he had hoped to bang out this deck,
and maybe have a day to go fishing with a new surf fishing pole.
But, you know how one thing becomes two, becomes three?
Yeah, he's real familiar with that, too!

He built a deck with the help of his sons.
He worked with the oldest the first day, the youngest the second day.
The third day he was on his own.
The oldest called about time he was finishing up the third day,
"Will Dad help me fix my exhaust? I finally got that part he's been telling me I need."
Dad "Yes, tell him I will".

The simple 45 minute project turned into several hours,
but boy, did that Blazer sound good when they were done!
Then he went right over to help the youngest,
in the replacing of the plywood for his half-pipe.
Most of this day was in intermitten rain.

They all were working near each other and having a great time.
I know that might sound crazy,
but they really seemed to enjoy themselves!
There is nothing like a hard-working man!
Except maybe, the possibility of raising two additional ones!

And he even made Valentine's sweet for me last night,
when I was already just completely happy
that he took some days off with me!

You know, there are times in a marriage,
where you just sort of well, let's just say it,
you don't feel mushy!
But, you made a committment,
so you decide to treat them, like you hope they will treat you,
you pray, you learn to speak up, at the right time, with the right words,
and you learn to get over your need to be "right".
(And I'm just telling what he's had to go through! :)
Weeks like this are exactly why! There is a pay-off!

Next month will be the 26th anniversary of when I met him,
and a week later of our first date.
26 years!
Truly God is good!
We were kids.
We didn't have a clue what we were doing,
and maybe it was better that way!
There was so much we didn't know! Still is! LOL!

Well, it's back to catching the bad guys and keeping the peace.
Which is what we use to tell our youngest when he was little,
and his Dad went to work.
We always waved good-bye!
If I'm fortunate, I'll be able to type faster than you can read now!
See you soon!

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Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Show Some Love!

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You know, I gotta go there. I have to!
Valentines is SOOO much more
than a way to sell Hallmark, roses and jewelry.
And if I see another commercial for a special Vermont Bear,
I just won't be responsible for my actions! PUUH-Leez!

What it Really Is
2 years ago on Valtentine's Day,
I was feeling really mushy towards My Abba Father.
I remember telling Him in my morning prayer,
that for this day, what I wanted for Valentines,
was to be able to show Him
that I loved Him.
Would He help me to do that?


Why certainly He would!

We have a young man,
who lives directly across the street.
He is probably 19 or so now.
He would have been around 17 then.
Anyway, since he was old enough to walk, this child
has been one to wander the neighborhood and creepy-crawl
into people 's yards, day or night.
His story is quite sad, and well documented by all the proper authorities.
So it's not like we looked the other way.
We tried to be friendly with him, several times.
But, he was so unwell,
it was deemed best for him and our son ,
if we were just were friendly from afar.
He has real anger issues, and that makes it difficult.
Going and getting a pellet gun to resolve a disagreement
with our son and his friend, about a casual game of street hockey,
proved to be the final straw there.
As said young man got older,
the creepy-crawling into yards, and breaking into places,
and stealing from yards and houses,
well, it engendered less sympathy and more caution, trepidation even.

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For about a year he took to standing by our mail box at night.
and smoking cigarettes and leaving them there,
just to let us know he'd been there.
Then over the Christmas Holidays,
he took some magazines out of our mail box,
and when he was done with them,
put them in the mail box with other mail.
No, we can't prove it, but, they had soooo obviously
been in someone's home for quite a while,
and they were at least 2 weeks late.
But, I figured it was relatively harmless.
And as scary as he was getting to be,
I still had a thimblefull of compassion for him.
So, now it's Valentine's,
I walk out to the mail box, the day is pretty,
my heart mushy, the birds are singing.
Imagine my chagrin, when 2 pieces of important mail,
1 to an attorney,
that I had put in the mail box the day before are in there.
Now, mind you I had put the flag up, and then,
that afternoon picked up the mail from the mail box
that was dropped off that afternoon,
(and my mail to be picked up was gone like it should be).
NOW it is the next day (Valentine's Day).
And the mail is back in the mail box
WITH THE FLAG UP!
It's like Ground Hog Day, the movie that is!
The mail that had previously, apparently been picked up,
had apparently NOT been picked up by the mailman,
but our wonderful mail-tampering neighbor!
OOOOOOOOHHHH!!!
Flames! Coming out of my head!
That was it, I wanted it fingerprinted! He was going down.
Or was he?
As I walked back to the house, I felt God calling in His marker.
Abba Father: Show him mercy. Do me this favor.
Show me love, by showing my love.
Me: Awww...what if he does it again?
Oh, OK.
Heaven knows You have shown ME enough mercy, Father!
I discussed it with my husband and
(that is always how God confirms things I am unsure about),
and Mr Law Enforcement himself verified,
that this seemed like the right thing to do.
So we continued to overlook.
And eventually he tired of this sport.
Thank goodness!
So, what's the point you ask?
Don't be conformed to this world!
(Gee I think someone really important said that before me!?)
Nothing wrong with celebrating with your loved one,
or your loved ones (family/friends).
But, turn your back on all that our culture says it has to be.
Don't wait on love to come to you!
Be the first! Be the first to show some love!
It doesn't have to be showy!
It can be as simple as an act of service,
or an act of mercy!
Give him a pedicure!
Make his favorite breakfast, even if you have to get up early to do it!
Call that old friend, you know that one who only calls you when they need something,
yes, that one!
Bring muffins and donuts to the office.
Make sure the snotty people get their favorites!
Yes, I said snotty!
Facts are facts, those are the ones who need the love most!
I leave with this thought:
"But I say unto you, Love your enemies,
bless them that curse you,
do good to them that hate you,
and pray for them which despitefully use you,
and persecute you;"
Matthew 5:44

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What Does it Mean Anyway? "Free to Fly"...

Well, it's like this: Here are some of the Webster's Dictionary definitions of Free: a : having the legal and political rights of a citizen b : enjoying civil and political liberty c : enjoying political independence or freedom from outside domination d : enjoying personal freedom : not subject to the control or domination of another2 a : not determined by anything beyond its own nature or being : choosing or capable of choosing for itself...having a scope not restricted by qualification 7 a : not obstructed, restricted, or impeded ...Now, here are some of the Webster's Dictionary definitions of Fly:1 a : to move in or pass through the air with wings b : to move through the air or before the wind or through outer space c : to float, wave, or soar in the air ... a : to take flight ...6 : to work successfully ...Examples which apply from Websters: fly high : to be elated - fly in the face of or fly in the teeth of : to stand or act forthrightly or brazenly in defiance or contradiction of

What does this mean in my life? This means that in life we are meant to be free. While historically mankind has not always enjoyed the opportunity to fully appreciate what that means, we are so indescribably fortunate as to live in a time of the greatest spiritual, physical, financial and political freedom ever known. Freedom doesn't come cheap, nor does it come easy. But the best things in life don't come that way do they? As I write this I am struck by how this sounds like a political statement, and for me this is much more of a spiritual thing, but, same goes for that (political that is). Freedom doesn't come easy. And it's worth whatever fight you have to make to overcome in your life in order to live a life that succeeds. Now the questions is - what is success for you? What is your standard? In my mind what is needed is a definite target - because you can't hit and maintain a moving target. A stable, rock-solid, anchor with no variable, yet multi-faceted. Something pure, just and worthy. If you look at any web page of news you can see that our society is certainly lacking in this area. What a great time to live as a rebel! Nowadays to be a rebel, all you have to do is be willing to engage in the battle of life, while anchored to Christ!