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Welcome to My Crazy Life!

Just a day to day, or week to week, account of a mom, teacher, friend, wife, and regular everyday busy woman!

Friday, December 30, 2011

More Like a Diary Post

One of the things I was always complimented on in my post-observation meetings was how reflective I am. I guess that is a compliment. But sometimes I think I reflect too much. I tend to look back and always make the "what if" statement in my mind. "What if" I had done it this way? "What if" I had not made that choice? And then that gets me thinking about the "What ifs " for my future. "What if" this doesn't work out?
Since school is out and nights have been later and mornings shorter, I find myself in this sort of "funk". I don't necessarily like it, but I'm in it. Actually, I don't like it at all. But here I am. And I know I need to get out of it because not only is it not good for me, it's not good for those who are around me. Because this yucky thing that I'm in makes me relive all those bad and hurtful feelings I felt when I lost my job.
And maybe that is why I can't get out of this. I have not truly gotten over the hurt of losing my job. Words can't describe the hole it has left in me. I loved my job. I still do. And the thought of not teaching again wouldn't be as bad if I didn't have kids. Because then I wouldn't have to go into the schools. Into the place where I want to be.
Don't get me wrong, I LOVE my kids with all my heart.
My mind still tells me "Give it to God. Trust in Him." I know that in my heart too. But my human emotions are still so raw and strong, I guess, that this is easier said than done. I do pray that God will show me the right path to follow. I pray that He will help me to help provide for my family. I pray that He will give me guidance and strength so that I may be what He wants me to be. I pray that He gives me the wisdom and courage to show others my true heart and not what I've made it out to be. I pray that He will take all this hurt and use it for good. I pray that He will help me be a better mother, wife, and friend.
It isn't that my job now is not fulfilling. It is, just not in the way teaching did. I had pride when someone asked me what I did for a living. And it's not that I don't have pride now when I tell others, it's just a different type. My job now is something I think I would do on the side, so to speak. It would be an added bonus to what I already did for students. There are a few students who are grateful for the help I have given.
And I know right now this seems really selfish of me. It is all about me and I. But sometimes when a person just writes down their feelings, it helps make it all go away. It's therapeutic writing. Not for anyone else, or for comment or ridicule, just for themselves. But again, I guess that is what diaries are for too!
However, if by reading this, you are driven to comment, by all means, feel free to do so.

Friday, September 9, 2011

New Beginnings!

Well, I have secured a new position in the school system! I will be assisting students with the whole college process. Most of the work I do is on a volunteer basis, but I do get a small living stipend every month and once I fulfill all the hours the program requires I will get a grant to help pay for school. An added bonus, you ask! I will get to help others! I will get to see if secondary education is the right path for me!
When I got the call for an interview, I asked God to give me the words to speak if this was the path He wanted me to take. Obviously He did for only reasons He knows right now. I cannot see the whole picture like He does. I just have to trust God. And I do. I am so thankful that I have the opportunity to stay in the school system and still stay in contact with kids. I am so thankful that God has given me something more than what I had before.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

The struggle between my head and my heart

As the first day of school approaches in the district where I live, I can't help but feel disappointed and angry.

I am angry because I saw something and heard something. How could those people behave like that and call themselves Christians? That angers me.
But GOD sees what is ahead. GOD will help me get through it. GOD will provide for me. GOD has something better for me.
Today as I began to write my feelings down, I went full blast. I put all my thoughts and feelings out there. But I know that my God would not approve if I hit the post button with all that, so I edited. A LOT! But this is more therapeutic than anything. I have always been the write it then trash it kind of girl. I can get the things bothering me off my chest by writing it down. And because I write it all and hold nothing back, I often trash those feelings, which is what I did earlier.

My husband and I got into a fight last night because this situation. I try to keep my cool in public when people ask me about what happened when all I really want to do is tell them what I think. I hold back because, for all I know, God may have planned for me to re-join the district. I hold back because it is the right thing to do. I hold back because I don't want to look like I deserved what I got. But when we are home, I don't hold back. He is my best friend and I want to share my thoughts and feelings with him. And I want him to feel the same way as I do about it all. I want him to be sympathetic to me. And one of the big differences between the two of us is that he gets over things more quickly than I do. In fact, I think it takes me at least twice as long as him.
So, after 2 months, I have still not gotten over all of this. Mainly because I have not had any luck with a new job. I had hoped that I would be occupied with something else. I have been looking at graduate school as well. But as I browse through the pages of potential schools for this, nothing interests me yet. Nothing jumps out and says, "This is your next path." So I am in turmoil inside. My head knows that I need to get past this. It says to move on. And I do want to move on. Yet, my heart is still broken. It is still picking up all the pieces from when it was shattered.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Thanks, Natasha for telling me how to embed!! Now you can check out this awesome song God let me hear at just the right time!
This is Kylie's "Leprechaun Dance"! Check it out.
There is seldom a dull moment around here!!

Check out my little "men"!!!

My Crazy Life!: Getting Through It All I

Getting Through It All I

If you know me, you will know that I don't like to admit when I am wrong or need help. I am independent. I seldom ask for help. That is just who I am. But I am learning how to let go of the pride that comes with letting go of all that.
Over the last year, I have had some major ups and downs. I have literally been on a roller coaster of emotions. Highs included having an awesome little kindergarten class who I love very much, growing closer to friends and God, and watching my babies grow. And I am not afraid to let you know about the lows either. To start it all off, I had a bad "review" with an observation at work which I think sent everything else spiraling down. My year ended with losing my job. I was devastated because my position was being filled with tenured teacher due to budget cuts. (this is what I was told by the administration) And as with all loses, I went through the gamete of emotions to deal with this. I was shocked, mad, depressed, and finally came to peace with the situation because I knew that God would not have allowed this to happen to me if He did not have other plans for me.
I had a great summer. We bought a house, so that filled up most of the time. We went of vacation to visit my family in Ohio, had an amazing week of VBS, and I taught an art class at Camp Creative. I even joined the church praise band as a "back-up" singer. But when time came to have to register my kids for school, the emotions I had thought I was over came rushing back with a fury and a vengeance.
I had been looking and applying for teaching positions in our district and at schools close to where we live in hopes that if I didn't get hired where I was formerly employed, I would be close to the kids. I applied to receive unemployment benefits and was approved for that.
Yet there I was, going in to register my children for school. I had to go back in and face the people I had spent two years getting to know and enjoy. (My daughter is starting kindergarten this year) I had to stop before I went through the doors to ask God for the strength and confidence to do it. I could feel all the anxiety and anger coming back into me.
I did make it through the registration even when my former principal came over to make small talk. And of course she wanted to know if I had found another job and what my plans were if not. In those moments, I had to control my thoughts and words more than ever. But I had asked God to help me so I knew that it was Him controlling me.
Later that night, was when I felt like I had been knocked back down to the bottom of the barrel. Every teacher friend I had not seen wanted to know if I had found a job. And you have to understand that teaching is what I feel God has led me to do. I started college in 1997 and finished in 2008. (I didn't take classes the entire time, but went when I could) Everyone I knew in the building I'm sure wanted to know. I felt looks of pity from those who knew me in the room. I couldn't stand it. I knew when I dropped off my daughter on the first day of school, I would get the same thing. So thoughts began to flood me. I thought of what I would say to the principal and other people who I was still furious with. I thought of what I would do if I didn't get hired by the time school started. I began to feel destroyed, crushed, and worthless. I was falling into depression. I cried almost all of the next day. I didn't want to leave the house. I wanted to be left alone.
But God sent me a straightforward husband and he wouldn't let me fall into that pit. When he came home from work that day, he left me alone at first but by the end of the day, he had had enough and finally told me that I couldn't let this take over me. So I left the house with him and slowly, the anger began to leave me.
But while I was going through this, I was filling my time with my Facebook page too. There I subscribe to a page that posts Bible verses. On the night I began to fall back into the pit, God put this verse on the page, Eph 4:31-32 Get rid of all bitterness, passion, and anger. No more shouting or insults, no more hateful feelings of any sort. Instead, be kind and tender-hearted to one another, and forgive one another, as God has forgiven you through Christ.
I knew it was what I needed to see and get through my head. My sister commented on that post and said that she had studied and spoke about this very verse the same night. I got comments from others that the verse was something they needed to hear at the time as well. But I was still angry. So I kept looking at the posts of my friends and other pages I subscribed to. And as I scrolled on down the page, I came across another post from a Bible group. This time it was a post of a song. Usually, I don't listen to videos posted, but I clicked on the link and found the most beautiful and moving song. It was still another message I needed to get. I fell in love with the song and the music coming from this couple. I fell in love with the words the poet had written. It spoke to me. It yelled to me, get up you silly girl. God is here and He is working. Trust Him!
Then after my pity party, I looked on my Facebook page the following morning and saw this! Colossians 3:15 The peace that Christ gives is to guide you in the decisions you make; for it is to this peace that God has called you together in the one body. And be thankful. (GNT)
He gives us the tools we need to get through life's trials. He asks that we trust Him. He asks that we give our sins and shortcomings to Him. He will help us through if we just let Him. He is always there. He gives us what we need just when we need it.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Day 61 Sure Thing

Jesus always knew just what to say. He called Herod out by calling him a fox and telling him that HE would keep doing what He was doing. How I wish that I could be like that. I know that there are times when I should speak up, but I don't. I know I don't like conflict and confrontation, so I keep quiet. Other times, I don't know what to say. Then again, there are a few times when I fly off at the mouth and get myself into trouble. So I have learned to keep quiet...most of the time.
There have been times when I have been direct. But those times have been few. And in those times, I have always felt something inside me that didn't feel like me, making me do it and that is just not who I am. So I am not always direct. Or maybe the word I am looking for is that bold.
My husband can say anything to just about anyone. He is not intimidated by many. He uses this at the appropriate times, most of the time, but he is bold when it comes to being direct. He usually justifies his words by ending with "It's the truth." Now wether or not I agree with his "truth" all the time is different, but when it comes to letting others know his feelings, he is unafraid. I wish that I could have just a little bit of the confidence to say what I think is my "truth" when it comes to the "Herods" in my life.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Day 60 Service While You Wait

Is it fair for God to hold leaders to a higher level of accountability than others? Yes and no. Here's why I think yes. These leaders are those we look to for guidance. We look to them to see how we should be acting, or to see what someone who is filled with the Spirit looks like because we have not yet been filled with the Spirit. Yes, he/she should be held to a high level of accountability because they not only allowed Jesus to enter into their hearts, but they answered the call to serve in a public way. But here's the no part to this too.
We all answered the call at one point in our lives. We all have asked Jesus to fill us with His Spirit and lead us where He needs us to go. Not all people can be preachers or spiritual leaders that fulfill their purpose in the public eye. We as Christians should all be held to a high accountability level because we have said yes to the awesome job of being a disciple of Jesus. If we are to obey the Lord's commandments, we should not use our positions to get what we want. I can think of some of these types of people but who can't? We should use God's call to fulfill God's plan, which has nothing to do with us.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Watch Me Dance!

You know, this is just little ol' me, but here, I think that God wants us to see how important we are. In verse 20, it says, " not rejoice that spirits submit to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven." He is saying that we are just as important as those who we seek to save along with us. If we don't value that, we can't convince others that it is worth it too. Those around us and those who we are sent to find will see through the "mask."
And yes, we should still seek the lost, but we should rejoice that He has our name written in the Book of Life along with every name we get to help add.
My image of Jesus never included one of the Son dancing and leaping for joy, but why should He not? Why should His life not be full of celebration too? As I sit here and think about it more, I can't help but think that Jesus was a person. Flesh and bones, just like us. We can't relate to anyone who is not like us. If we only see Jesus as this somber, Holy figure, we will never be able to become more like the person He was too. Just like we read before, Jesus took baths, combed his hair, felt hunger, sorrow, and joy. We can't forget that He was like us. He was sent for the people of the world. And aren't we all flesh and bone underneath it all, just like Christ? The only thing that separates us from them is that they have never opened their hearts to this idea. And it is our job to at least plant the seed of life so that it may grow until they are ready to blossom with the love that God has given to them too.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Hey, It's Not Me!

Rejection. I don't deal well at all with that. I always take it personally. But rejection is one of satan's ways of cutting us down. He knows the human heart too. Who doesn't like to be wanted, needed, loved. When we are rejected by those around us, it cuts like a sharp, sharp knife.
But even in the throws of rejection, we can have faith in our Lord! He is there for us through it all, and for it all.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Blasted Unbelievers

I am so ashamed. I have let life get the best of me, and lost touch with what is really important. So many times, I ask God to forgive me for not making time for Him. I know that I am not perfect, nor will I ever be. All I can do is admit my sins to God and ask for His forgiveness. And knowing that, I take for granted that others can't do the same. Part of the reason they can't ask for forgiveness for the same sin I have committed is because they don't know Him yet. I really should be more ashamed of that than anything else.
I think that sometimes we get caught up in what we think is right that we sometimes forget that what our human minds have created may not be the actual truth. For example, one of my sisters and I are both believers of Christ. However, we don't see eye to eye about the details. Does that mean I am wrong and she is right, or vice versa? Maybe we both are right. Maybe we both are wrong. That doesn't matter much though if we both don't have an attitude like Christ. If we both want the other to be wrong and be punished for our misguidance, we both are not following God's command. We both should be working toward a common goal: showing others the way to Christ.
Another example I can think of is with my other sister. She shared some things about herself with me that in the past I would have given her a piece of my mind about. But since I have been making a conscience effort to have an attitude of Christ, I decided to not say anything. I am just going to be there if she needs me and pray for her. Because right now, I feel that is what Jesus would do in this situation.
I love my family and I now realize that if one or more of them don't see eye to eye with me, that in the past, I have been terribly pushy to try to get them to see things my way. Now, I know that I need to pray to have a heart and attitude like Jesus or else I will be just like James and John, wanting to destroy their way so that mine will prevail.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Sowing Lessons

I am so far from a green thumb, I am almost embarrassed to admit it. (I once had a cactus that didn't make it!) But I still try. As a matter of fact, I have had a plant thrive under my care for almost three years now. My husband teases me that this is a miracle, and I sometimes wonder why this one plant has persevered through my gardening habits or lack there of and others don't.
But after reading today's study, I think I realize why. The soil wasn't right.
As a teacher, I have to teach about plants. To kindergartners, this concept has to be simple. I can't teach them ideas that are to complex or their little minds will not be able to grasp it. I have to teach them the basics and let my fellow teachers expand on it. So bear with me while I give my version of a sowing lesson.

The soil has to have the right amount of nutrients and oxygen and water for the pant to grow. The food is the Word of God. The oxygen is an open hearts. The water is the Blood of Christ that was shed for you and me. The roots are understanding the Word, the stem is perseverance, the leaves our ears to hear the Word, the flower is us pleasing God, and the seed is spreading God's word to others, and the sun represents God's love for us.
Now I could get deeper in my analogy, but like I said, I am a kindergarten teacher and I like to keep things simple. And although the drawing my look like one of my students drew it, to me it carries a beautiful message-God is in everything!
So if you get flowers this week from your loved ones, know that God loves you too and He is pleased because you are one of His beautiful flowers too!

Friday, February 11, 2011

Go In Peace

This verse says to me, continue your life from this point on and know that you have been saved from your sins by God's grace. Go in peace is definitely shorter, but these three words speak volumes. I don't think that God meant that your life will never have trials or tribulations when He gave Jesus these words to speak to us. He meant that we have been forgiven from the sins of our past, the things that have been weighing us down. I have been coming to this realization over the past few months. God never promises us that life will be easy or that we will always have peace. The peace I think we read here is peace of mind, not a peaceful world or peaceful people. We always hear that God never gives us anything we can't handle. That is true, but satan uses these opportunities to come in and steal our confidence, place doubt, and add fear. He finds our weak spots and waits until we are down in one of our valleys. We have to realize that we have been put in this situation and use God's Word and prayer to defend ourselves.
In our sermon on Sunday morning, the preacher delivered a sermon asking who the devil was. At the end of the sermon he gave us some ways to resist satan. He said to resist the devil, store His Word in our hearts, claim His strength and power, and to put on God's armor. If we do this, and we keep our eyes open to satan's schemes, we can keep conflict and doubt from destroying us. Peace only comes when we acknowledge that God sent His one and only Son to earth to take on the sins of the world. Peace comes when we acknowledge God allowed His one and only Son to bear those sins and die on the cross for you. Peace comes when we acknowledge the Jesus is the truth, the way, and the life.
I received and email today from a coworker, I'd like to share it with you now because it is so appropriate for our topic.
"May there be peace within.
May you trust that your are exactly where you are meant to be.
May you not forget the infinite possibilities that are born of faith in yourself and others.
May you use the gifts you have received and pass on the love that has been given to you.
May you be content with yourself just the way you are.
Let this knowledge settle into your bones, and allow your soul the freedom to sing, dance, praise and love.
It is there for each and every one of us."
No where does this quote mention anything about God, but you can plainly see where it fits in. I sent this on to a few of you before I started reading today. God is at work in my life, I can feel His loving hand touching me each day. I pray that you can feel it at work in your life too.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Days 25-32

Forgiveness. Without it we would not have hope. Oh, how I thank God that He forgives and give hope. Our reactions are forgiven, our thoughts, our words are all forgiven if we ask. But I wish I didn't have to ask so often.
I was recently told that I am good at reflection. Although I don't see this as one of my strong traits, I do think about all the "could haves" after the fact. I could have done it this way, or I could have said this. I know I am a person who lets her heart lead. I know that this makes me react first then think later. Often times, this reaction is emotional. It is not difficult to figure out that this year has been rather trying and full of trials at work for me. I have had to face some tough criticisms and deal with other challenges. I let my emotions lead me through these difficult days. I know that I do. I don't like conflict. I try to avoid it, yet this year, I find myself right in the middle of it and I can't deal with it in a rational, calm way...until after the storm is over. I am learning, however, that God's word can help me with all aspects of my life.
I have started to pray for God's guidance before I plan my lessons. I praise Him for my job, my family, my friends and His love for me.
Today's lesson was something I knew. I know that I should not think some of the thoughts. But Like Beth Moore said, "Dirt is dirt." We need to clean the dirt from our minds. I think that the dirt gets deep when we are put in situations with those we find less than favorable or when we are faced with temptations.
I know that when my baby sister called me the other day and told me she was dating a much older man, I wanted to give her a piece of my mind and tell her what I thought. But, I found myself telling her that I was not going to make any judgements and that I was happy for her. And I am. She deserves someone to treat her and her kids nicely. I am trying desperately not to let my thoughts about the situation get carried away. I think that when we do this, we let the dirt get thick. I am trying to clean up the dirt. I don't want add more!
I have really been trying to apply the lessons of each day to my life. I can feel the changes, but I know that I still have a long way to go. I know that I will stumble along the way. I will sin again. But words cannot describe how thankful I am that I have let a loving, forgiving God into my life. Without Him, I know that I would be nothing.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Days 21-24

I find myself wanting to apologize again....
Saturday I took Kylie to Urgent Care, then Sunday, I had to go back for Jacob. Our house was flooded with the flu. My husband caught the stomach flu to top it all off. Yet, I seemed to be immune to it all. I was the sole healthy person in our household. I stayed home from work for two days. When I finally returned to work, I was met with more challenges first thing in the morning. By the end of the day, I was exhausted. Here I had never stopped to study Jesus' Word. I had never taken the time. I let the devil convince me that I was too tired to spend time with Him. And you will never believe how that effected the rest of this week!
I feel foolish for letting that happen. I have been asking God's forgiveness ever since I have realized that. If only I had keep on like Jesus did in day 21. He never let the true mission get in the way by letting all the trivial things of life on earth push Him off the path. I did.
I think that day 23 really drove home the message that I have not been letting God guide me in ALL that I do. Sure I try to glorify Him at work. But I never realized that it meant that I needed to do it through work. I have been keeping those separate. As a teacher, I have not been planning my lessons with all my heart to work for the Lord's purpose. I underlined "Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving." I too often think that I am serving a class, or a group of people. But I am not. I am serving God in my work. I have to do my best to please Him. And in doing that, I will please all the others.
I wish that I could go back and change my actions. I wish that I could have made different choices. But I can't. I know that God does everything for a reason. I choose to obey or disobey. I am learning from those lessons.
I ask Him for forgiveness for my disobedience. I am asking God to help me plan with His purpose in mind.

God please help me serve You first in ALL that I do.

Struggles won't seem like such an uphill battle if I keep that I mind.

Thank you Natasha.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

House Calls

We all want our children to know that God is with us no matter where we are. We don't have to go to church to know God. As I have said before, I know God is with me when I am at home, when I am at work, or when I drive. He is with me all the time. Today, again while I was driving, someone else almost hit me. I was paying attention and avoided any accident. But I made it a point to say to Kylie riding in the back seat that God was riding with us. I want her to know that she can count on Him to be with her always.
We were out today because I was taking her to the doctor's office. She has had a fever for a couple of days and nothing I have given her seemed to be working. I can see Jesus taking care of Simon's mother-in-law just the way I have cared for Kylie today. I didn't care that I could get whatever she had. I just wanted to be there to comfort her. Jesus comforts us with the same attitude. He will be there for us no matter what the problem. (BTW, After 2 hours of waiting, I decided that we would just take prescriptions for the flu and a cold and go home.)
So many times when we are up on top of our mountain, we forget to praise God. I find myself talking to God more when I am dealing with one of the valleys. I hope that when I am up on that mountain, I will remember to talk to Him just as much as I do when I am down below.

The Enemy's True Colors

This story brought to mind an event that I experienced before I became a Christian. I was out one night, I had been to a bar and shut that one down. Then the people I was with decided that they wanted to go to an after hours club. I was ready to go. So we find this club, wait in line and get in after some waiting. Because it was an after hours club, it meant that you had to bring whatever you wanted to drink with you. I didn't want to take anything, I was fine with water. But when we get there and started walking around this building, I got this really strange feeling. Like I shouldn't be there. I soon found out that the building in which we were "partying" in was formerly an church. As I looked around inside, there were all sorts of people. I saw things that I wish I had never seen. I stood beside two people as drugs and money exchanged hands! The bad feeling continued to get stronger. I didn't want to be there one second longer.
I was not yet a Christian, but being in a former house of the Lord with people doing the things they were doing was not okay with me. This was a house built for God, and there was a DJ in the pulpit, drugs in the sanctuary, and drinking in the basement. I knew in just a few seconds that the devil was at work in that place. I have never forgotten that experience. I never will. I stood in the midst of satan's handywork. I am sure that he was smiling as all of that went on, every night. I saw what hell would look like, and I decided then and there that I would not be apart of anything like that again.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Shooting Stars

Who can forget the day the world met sweet little Britney or Lindsey? You know who I am talking about. We all thought they were the best role models for girls. They seemed to be well rounded young women. Then they were tempted by one thing or another and the whole world saw their mistakes. What about good ol' Tiger? When they first came on the scene we rolled out the red carpet like Beth Moore described. When Jesus came into Nazareth, the people rolledout the red carpet for Him. They listened to Him. They listened to the melody coming from his lips. They didn't HEAR what he was saying. The only thing those people heard were the things they wanted to. Then they formed their opinions and had changed their tune about him. I see this relation in today's time too. When we hear the things we want to about someone, we form our opinions, especially about celebrities who have made bad choices, and we are ready to shoot the stars!

Instead of trying to fall into the trap of running messenger out of town, we should really try to think about why we didn't get the message. Or maybe we get mad at the messenger because he/she has struck a chord in us. The message was meant for us to hear and we needed to hear it, we were guilty of what was being preached and we are caught in the middle of making the choice to acknowledge it and change or ignore it and go on with the way we have. God never told us that we would always welcome change. He never says that making the choice to change would be easy. Often, it is easier to do what is wrong. In the case of celebrities, we never hear about the good choices they make. The big news is in when they mess up. The whole world sees their mistakes because of who they are.

Proclaiming Provision

I will admit that this lesson is one I have struggled to connect to. I have gone through and read everyone's posts, but still I can't really connect to what it is I think I need to get from this. I do understand the scripture, yet I still can't connect.
With that said, I will comment on the questions posed to us at the beginning of the study.
It may be that I cannot fully comprehend what Christ has come to do in me yet. I can feel God telling me something. I feel it all the time. But then I rationalize. I try to guess what it is He wants me to do before He has told me. It could be that right now, He is simply preparing me for what is to come. Or, I may not be ready to receive His instructions. It could be that I have rationalized the direction He wants me to go too much and now I am left to figure out what I need to do again. So, in the meantime, I will ask for God's guidance, His patience, and His forgiveness for my human mind's rationalization.
Life wouldn't be life without suffering and difficulty. Life wouldn't be life with out joy and happiness too. These are the mountains and valleys in the landscape of our lives. Christ suffered for us. His life ended with suffering for you, for me, for the whole world. He fulfilled the Scripture. God didn't give us such a precious gift for us to just be on this earth and go through the motions or survive. He gave us His Son so that we could thrive.
I guess that is why I am having trouble with this. I wrote in my reflection that we have to get out of ourselves and open our hearts, minds, souls and ears to what God's plan is for our lives. I have not yet done this, so I cannot thrive in Him yet.
So I pray you and me today. I pray that we can break away from ourselves so that we can see what God has planned for us.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Tempting Invitations

When are we tempted? When we are weak. When are we weak? When we are hungry, when we are away from His Word, when we are away from His sons and daughters, when we are away from His plan for us.
I think that Beth Moore was absolutely correct in asking us to look at when we are tempted. If never stopped to think about when we are tempted, we will never learn to stay out of those situations that tempt us the most.
I know I find that when I have had a very bad day at work, I am tempted. This is a time when I let satan get the best of me because I have not remembered His Word. I don't have comfort in Him. I forget that He is in control. That is why I have put my new favorite scripture verse on my desk. (Psalm 25: 20-21) It is there to help remind me who is the One in control and how I should handle it. When I don't eat healthy or when I skip a meal, I am tempted. I do try to keep healthy snacks in my desk and try not to unhealthy food to keep at home. I know that if there is chocolate around, I will be very tempted to eat it. (or anything sweet) When I go visit friends who are not Christians, that is a very tempting time. They say and do things that I know are not pleasing to God. I don't want to be a bad friend, yet I am still not doing what God wants me to when I am around those people. That is a struggle I am still trying to overcome. I have to learn how to deal with these people in my life in a why that is pleasing to God. But I do know that I can not be around these people for too long, or I will fall back into my old ways and lose sight of the plans He has made for me. When things are going well for me, and I neglect to study His Word or praise Him for those good times, satan comes in to tempt me. Satan reminds me to get back on track. When we ignore what God wants for our lives I believe that this is an open door for satan to walk into our lives and push us to keep ignoring Him.
I know that I will fall into these temptations and others, but I know that I can count on my God to be there to help me climb back out of the pit.

Monday, January 24, 2011

A Father Unlike His Son

You know if you always have something, you don't want it all the time. Like the grass is always greener on the other side. I think that if heaven were always open for us to see any ol' time we wanted to see it, we wouldn't want to go there. It's like when you were a kid and you loved playing with your friend's toys then you had to go back home to play with yours. Like when you live at a beautiful beach or other sought after vacation spot you don't see the beauty in what you have all around you. If we saw heaven we wouldn't want to go, because we have already seen its splendor.
It's like knowing the ending to a movie before you go to see it. Who wants that? Not me. God's promise is sufficient for me. I am at that point in my walk that I know that much.
God's blessing is the single most important thing that has ever happened in my life. I have graduated from college, twice. I have gotten married, had two beautiful kids, been to visit a few of God's creations, but none can ever surpass the day I realized that I had received the riches and blessings of the Lord God, Almighty. Without Him, there is no hope of heaven. There is no hope of anything good and joyful, in my opinion. There is no promise. And I know that I could not go on without that. What would be the use?
Thank you, God that You gave that to me!

Wearing our Transgressions

It was like yesterday, yet so long ago that my heart was crying out so loud for the Lord's saving grace to come in to my heart. It is funny because I think that everyone I know can give you the exact date that they came to know the Lord. I can honestly say that I did not remember that detail. I can remember it was a sunny Sunday morning. I had not been attending church for very long, I a newlywed and mother of a beautiful baby boy. I was sitting with my husband in the same pew I sit in every morning. The sermon had just been concluded and the invitation was given. I stayed in my spot. Leslie was leading the invitation song on her keyboard, but what song, I can't remember. As I stayed there, I looked over where the pianist would have been playing. There above this place, was the most brilliant white light. I just remember that when I saw it that I felt at peace. I knew that I was going to be okay. At the time, I had no idea what was happening. The only person that had ever shared the Lord's plan with me was my husband. Then, after the invitation ended, a church member asked to speak to the congregation about something in which they needed prayer about. This subject upset me, greatly. Here I knew that something wonderful had happened, yet words and a situation in another persons' life caused me confusion and trouble in my heart because this subject was very sensitive to me. (What this is all about, I'll share some other time.) But, I was filled with so many emotions at that point that I couldn't explain anything. I think that my husband had sensed that something had happened that morning, but he didn't say anything. I think he knew. We went to his mother's house for lunch after church and I remember sitting in the car while he took the baby in. And I just sat there for about two hours. Thinking. Crying. I finally went inside and ate a little, but no one said anything.
Years went by. I still was trying to figure out the whole situation. Finally, just before the birth of my second child, I finally figured what had happened that morning. I had asked the Lord Jesus to come into my life and save my poor wretched soul. I just didn't know that I had done this. My heart cried out because it knew what my mind couldn't understand. Oh, how thankful I am for this.
God is so unbelievably amazing to me. I can't begin to describe it right now, but He is something I will never be able to wrap my simple mind around. And I'm perfectly fine with that.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

My Baby!

My baby girl had her first dance recital tonight! I am so incredibly proud to be her momma. I thank God He let me be her mommy. She was amazing too! This little bundle of joy is such a blessing to us.
And wouldn't you know, I don't have a picture because the battery on the camera was dead! But, I will get one from her aunt, or I can just dress her up in her costume again!!!

Wearing Our Transgressions

I have never put that much thought into asking God to forgive my sins. I mean, I have of course asked for His forgiveness and have felt the peace after knowing that He has. But I mean after that. I have never looked at asking forgiveness like Beth Moore described. If I were to look myself in the mirror everyday like I do to put on my makeup, and ask Him to forgive me specifically, I would probably be better. Better in the sense that I would admit those sins and then be forgiven but more than that, I would be recognizing my sins and changing them immediately so that I wouldn't have to admit them again. Who wants to keep asking for forgiveness from the same sin over and over again? I know that I don't. If we did that, it would be the same as asking God to forgive all our sins, in general. What's the point then?
I really loved the way Beth Moore also brought up the idea about Jesus going to be baptized after all those people had confessed their sins in the very same water. He did bear the load for us more than once. Do you think He felt all the weight of those sins on Him when He was raised out of the water? I know that when I was baptized, I felt weightless after I was raised out of the water. I can't help but wonder if Jesus felt the opposite. I guess that is something I will sit and ponder for the rest of the night.

Friday, January 21, 2011

New Design!

I was up late and was playing with the design of my blog. I think now it will look more like a journal. That is what I feel I am doing with this. I am journaling my thoughts and feelings. The only difference is that this is public and it is what we in the education world call using technology! So, I hope that the change is not too distracting. If it is, please let me know. I will be happy to change it back.

Picturing Jesus

I have always pictured Jesus as this Godly like being. He was a person yes, but he was more like the Roman or Greek gods. He looked human, but had superhuman qualities. I never really stopped to think about him having morning breath, hearing his sandals flop as he walked, or doing or having all the humanly normal things we do. But it does make sense that he would. He is our friend. We want our friends to have some of the same qualities we do. I don't want to have a Greek-like god as a friend. I want someone who is Godly, a good listener, funny, positive, encouraging, patient, trustworthy, and joyful. Who wants a friend who is out of touch with what we are? God knew this about us, it is of course, how He created us. So He sent His Son to be like us, so that we could see that we are special too, that we deserve all the riches of heaven.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

What it's all about

I will admit that I have lost my child...on more than one account. I have never spent 3 days looking for her. Only just a few seconds. But those seconds feel like 3 days. Usually she will run off when we are at a store. At first I was scared to death that someone had taken her. I still do get scared when she disappears. BUT, I have learned after the first couple of times that she is not far, most of the time. Kylie likes to hide in the clothes racks at the store. So now, if she quickly disappears, I know to look there first. I know now where she will usually be. That doesn't mean I like where she is, I just know that I will find her there.
I think if Jesus was a pre-teen of today, He would tell Mary, "Duh, where else would I be?" Of course we would expect more of Him though! But I love how Beth Moore used the magnet example to illustrate how Jesus was drawn to God and His Word. He just couldn't get away from it because they were supposed to be together. Another example I can think of is using the Google Earth app. I was looking at a close up photo of my parents house in Ohio and touched a button on the app. Then there was this pop-up that asked if I would like the app to use my current location. I touched yes then all of a sudden, the app zoomed me out and the image of the Earth spun and then zoomed back into my house, all in a matter of a few seconds. It blew my mind! The power of God zoomed Jesus out of Mary and Joseph's sight then zoomed back to Him, as it naturally would.
We should be drawn to God like that. Not just because we have to, but because there is this force within us that draws us close to Him. I pray that through our journey, we will be drawn to the majestic power of God. I pray that we can zoom out of us and zoom back into the Lord because it is natural for us. It's the "Duh, where else would I want to be".

Listening, Answering

I am a great listener. I usually listen more than I talk, unless you are a close friend or someone I have not seen in a long time. At get-togethers, I am quietly taking in all the conversations going on. Sometimes I will talk, but I am not the life of the party by far. I am more like a wall flower.
I don't have all the answers. I never will. I will always seek them out. Jesus was the flesh form of God. Maybe God taught Jesus how to listen, since of course that is one of the things we as humans do. When our children need us to listen, we do. When our friends need someone to listen, we do. We have to learn to be a good listener too. If we are the ones doing all the talking, no one will come to us when they have a problem. I know that if God was always talking about Himself and not listening to what I had to say, I might not be a believer. But I know a God who always has an ear when I need it. No matter what time of day or night, He is there, for me to talk to.
As far as answering, we have to be very good listeners to hear what He has to say back to us. My husband and I were just trying to explain to Jacob at dinner that God talks back to us, we just have to understand how. It could be the little voice in your head.
I know when I wanted to know if I was pregnant for the first time, I asked God to show me and he did. About 5 minutes after I asked Him that question, a tv commercial came on with a pregnant woman. Soon after, a pregnancy test commercial came on, all on a channel that didn't normally play those kinds of commercials! God could be speaking to us by sending someone or something we had asked for. We have to have a listening ear, a pondering and open heart and the knowledge of His word in order to hear God.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Covenant and Redemption

The first thing I think of when I think of the holiness of the events that took place are "I am not worthy." I am a great big ol' sinner and I don't deserve all that God has done for me. Yet He did do it for me and you and the whole world. That's another thing I can't get my simple mind around. The entire world. Almost 7 billion people. I just checked the world population as I wrote this and there are exactly 6,894,509,587 people in this world. God sent Jesus for ALL of us. That is a huge number. Amazing!
It is beautiful how God has planned the "big picture". He knows right from the start, how it will end. He knew that Mary and Joseph would follow their customs and circumcise, present, and purify their new son. And He knew that each of these customs would be changed by His Son. God planned for it to be that way. It is like a wonderful movie. And we still don't know how it all will end exactly. (kind of like when we saw Titanic for the first time, we knew the boat would sink, we just didn't know how the movie would depict it) We know Jesus will come again for the believers in the end. We will join Him on His cloud of glory and be carried up to heaven to live with the Almighty Lord. But until we see it for ourselves, it we won't know the exact details.

I apologize.

I have to apologize for not making the time to post last night. I was called just before school ended yesterday to come get Jacob because he was sick. Once I got done taking care of him, I had to plan for today, naturally. Thanks to my wonderful husband for staying home with both kids while I went back to work to prepare for a substitute.
Now as I write this, I have two stomach bug ridden children! I pray that my husband and I stay healthy through all of this and that the bug is short-lived.

Monday, January 17, 2011

A Night of Nights

It seems like it was yesterday when I held my baby boy in my arms for the very first time. I gazed at his delicate face and could not find the words to speak. I had dreamed of the perfect thing to say to him once I finally got to meet this little person who was growing in me. But here I was, speechless. I imagine that is how Mary felt too. What do you say to the baby Savior? Because He is God's Son, He would already know who you are, right? When I finally got over the fullness of what had just happened to me, I know I said, "Hi, I'm your mommy. I love you." I would love to have been a fly in the manger to hear what she said, see what she did. I think about the Max Lucado story, The Crippled Lamb. It was read at Christmas time to our children during a children's sermon, then I borrowed it from Natasha and returned it just today. (another reminder that God is in control!) I read it to my students as part of a "culture" lesson during Christmas time. But the main character, the crippled lamb, was in the barn when Mary gave birth to Jesus. Oh, to have been there.
The world must have seemed to stop for Mary as she lay there and admired God's handy work. She took those quiet moments after His birth to ponder what had just happened. She took in every moment, every sound, sight, smell. She made a very conscience effort to remember every detail of this moment, for no other mother could boast what she could. No other mother would carry a baby as special as hers. God had given her the greatest gift. He had just given it to the world. She took in the realness of the moment.
I think if I would take the time to stop and enjoy the important things in life, I could appreciate how special what I have really is. But with the hustle and bustle of life, I don't. I don't think that we do stop and "smell the roses" enough. We don't take in the beauty of it all. We think that because we aren't busy with something every waking second, we are doing something wrong. We try to fill the "down" time with anything. I know I think about all the things I have to get done. I have a list a mile long of things I have to get done. But, because I am learning I am not in control, I have not even come close to finishing that list, plus, I am always adding to it.
I think God wants us to take time to get away from the lists in life and focus on what He has given us more, like Mary. Instead of working from the time we open our eyes to the time we fall into bed, we should stop and take the time to watch our babies as they sleep, thanking God for these precious gifts. We should stop and praise Him when someone tells us we have done something good at work, even if it is a student. We should be thankful and really think about what God has given us and how we can give back to Him.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Heaven Came Down

I thank God that He didn't put stipulations on who could become a Christian and who couldn't. He left that choice to us. We decide because He sent His Son so that WHOEVER believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life. God didn't say that only those who have never broken a commandment or those who read the Bible can enter through the gates of heaven. He didn't say that only people who are of noble birth are the ones He sent His Son to die for. God never said that he is the one who decides who will become a Christian. He said ALL people can go to heaven. His good news was for ALL people. Thank you God for forgiving this sinner and making me whole.
You know, I think too, that God chooses the common people because most of us consider ourselves to be common. We see nothing extraordinary about ourselves. None of us will ever be great outside of our circle of friends and loved ones for the most part. We are not famous or rich. We don't live in castles, have servants and guards. We do for ourselves and our families the best we can. We live life according to the law and God's will. That doesn't mean that God can't become a part of these people's lives, because He said the news was for all people.

God's news was brought with great joy. At the end of the reading, Beth Moore says that our witness would be far more effective if our news was brought with great joy too. It reminds me of when the kids tell me about something good that has happened for them. They are filled with so much excitement and joy, they are literally jumping for joy. We should be filled with that kind filled with that kind of excitement too when it comes to telling others about the saving grace of our Lord.

Perfect Timing!

God is always there when we need Him. He is there when we think we don't. God shows He is still in control when we least expect Him to show up. It is like the other day. I was listening to songs for our children's choir and our study for that day was the song of Mary. God is there when we drive, sleep, work, eat, watch tv, He is always around us. Sometimes we forget that He is there and that is why I think He does those "little" things. He shows us HE is still the ruler of all.
I remember waiting for the birth of my two kids. Both times, I would think that I was in labor and would rush to the hospital only to be turned away only having Braxton Hicks contractions. I didn't know what I was supposed to be feeling when the baby was getting ready to come. I didn't travel too far from home as the due dates grew nearer. I had a plan for how I would get to the hospital if I went into labor at work or if I was home alone. Can you imagine being near the end of your pregnancy and having to get on the back of a donkey because you were so pregnant you couldn't walk and go through the mountainous terrain for a census? Mary once again shows her faith in the Lord by taking part in this incredible journey. You can't plan for things when you let God control your life. Just like Mary did. Wow!
God's power never ceases to amaze me. I really do stand in utter awe of it. I think of the song that asks what will you do when you meet Him. I think I will fall to my knees in His amazing glory, silent, awestruck, that God has allowed me to be in His glorious presence.

Friday, January 14, 2011

A Good Time to Celebrate

You know, I never can understand some religions who refuse to recognize that God wants us to joyously celebrate some things. Call me silly, but I believe that He would not take joy in us if we could not take joy in Him and show Him that joy. If someone were to walk up to me today and pose the question Beth Moore did at the beginning of the lesson I would have to say that God knows my heart and why I celebrate.
As I sit here and ponder the time we celebrate the birth of our Savior I think about the type of weather and climate we have in December. It is cold, it gets dark way too early, and it is sometimes downright gloomy. In our darkest month, we celebrate our Lord. In the darkest time in our life, we should celebrate our Lord! I like to have a light when I am in the dark, don't you?

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Mary's Song

I have spent some time looking and listening for songs today for our children's choir. I find it so appropriate that God planned for today to be the day we study Mary's song!

I think that when we sing our praises to God, we really can tell alot about what is important to them in what they say. I know that when I pray for the kids during children's choir that I always praise Him for those who are there, giving us another day to worship Him, and then I always make sure to pray for a good school week. Of course I pray for the people or things the kids make requests for, but the school thing I always add. It is just as much for them as it is for me. I am thankful to the Lord that after all these years of trying to finish college, I finally made it and I can follow my dream. I make sure to praise Him for that every chance I get. Even when I have had a really bad day, I still try to praise God for allowing me to be a teacher. Like us, Mary praised God by telling us what was important to her. I hope that I can follow in her example. No wonder our Lord chose her to carry the most precious gift!

I was trying to come up with my own thoughts but because I have listened to about 40 songs today, it was difficult for me to think of something on my own. Normally I can, so if this sounds familiar, please forgive me!

God made me who I am.

He made me just the way he wants me to be.

Nothing can ever change me, cause I am who He said I'd be.

Praise the Lord for it's Him to whom I sing!

My life has not always been one pleasing to Him,

But He still loves me and I love Him!

Thank you Lord for saving me,

Thank you Lord for freeing me!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Kindred Hearts

Like Mary and Elizabeth, I have shared being pregnant at the same time as other women. I regret losing touch with the woman I got to share my first pregnancy with. She is a strong woman who I could count on to keep me grounded. She kept those first time mom-to-be feelings in check. Her son was born exactly six months before mine. She could share all of the "real-life experiences" about what I could expect.

With the second child, I was so blessed to share my time of pregnancy with two other amazing women. Our children were born 5 days or less apart. I cherish the time I could talk to someone who understood where I was at in that part of my life. I still do because my hope is that our children will grow up together. Even if they don't get to, I will still thank God for that experience in my life. Words can't begin to explain how grateful I am.

I have also been blessed to be able to be there for someone when they needed a shoulder to cry on. Between my two children now, I found out that I was pregnant. Unfortunately, that pregnancy was ectopic, so I had to undergo an emergency surgery to remove my tube. It was a life saving surgery. About two years after that, when I was working, an acquaintance had just lost a pregnancy of her own. As I was still trying to come to terms with God's plan for my life, I was able to listen to her. I was able to relate to her. We even found out that we had been seeing the same doctor. We were able to share a heartbreaking experience. It was therapeutic to be able to share my experience with her.

These are not the only times that I have been able to relate to someone. But these times are when the bonds of friendships form. We can use these situations as springboards if we choose to. Mary knew that Elizabeth was having a baby, the angel told her. She went to see Elizabeth because she chose to. She could have run home to tell her family, betrothed husband, or even to talk to a religious person, but she didn't.

As I sit here and think about it. She wanted to talk to Elizabeth first, I think, because she knew that she would be the most understanding. When ever we have a problem we run to the person who we think will understand us the most first. One who won't give us an opinion, but one who will tell us the truth because they know us. Especially when we are teenagers. I can remember so many times when I was growing up that I would be faced with a situation and my friends were the first to know. My mom would be the last. I knew that she would give me what I thought was the third degree, or that she wouldn't understand.

I am blessed that I can still call my mom when I get in a situation I don't know the answer to. I have learned over the years that she will not say things just to comfort me. She will tell me the truth.

The reaction of the baby in the womb amazes me! I just can't get over the fact that John, not even born yet, sensed the presence of Mary and the Lord Jesus, who had just been conceived in the room. It truly gives me goosebumps. I know that when my husband talked an while I was pregnant, the children would respond...sometimes! Babies in womb respond to soothing or familiar sounds, it has been proven. But Mary being around was not familiar to Elizabeth's child. Yet here we see God's miraculous work as Elizabeth's child leaped for joy! Wow!

The last Bible study I participated in led me to write about my younger years...before I knew God, before I knew much at all. In it I wrote about all the choices I made and where I am now. Unfortunately, the computer I saved that paper on crashed and it is gone. But I did send it to my pastor because I thought that I could help someone get through something similar to me. I hope that God will give me that opportunity someday.

I thank God for the friends I have made, the friends I will make, and all the friends I have had. Each one was/is in my life because God knows that I need them and they might need me. I want to be the kind of friend that Jesus would be. I try to remember that now. Now that time is scarce and a kindred heart could be right there. All I have to do is give that person a chance. I don't think that there is a person alive who hasn't been burned by a friend or family member. But we have to remember that we can't let those negative relationships or experiences define the ones we have now, or the ones we will have.

One of the pre-reading questions asked us to explain why receiving God's comfort isn't enough. Why do we need to share His Comfort. I will leave you with my thoughts on it. God gave us His son. He knew what Jesus would have to go through, it was His plan. God did that for me, you, and everyone else. It's an old saying about our possessions, but it is true. If it weren't for God, we would have nothing. Isn't the same true about God's comfort? We would share anything a friend asked for. If we are to be like Jesus and treat all like friends, wouldn't we want them to have the greatest thing of all?

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

How can this be?

I remember when I was saved. Who can't, right? But when I think back on it now, I know that my heart must have been crying out for Him. I don't remember making the decision that I wanted Jesus as my Savior, but He sure knew I needed Him! Boy am I happy He knew it too! I wondered how Jesus could love me after all I had done before. I wondered why did God chose me. How can this be? I imagine that Mary was similar to so degree. She knew she didn't make that decision, but she willingly said "May it be to me as you have said." Luke 1:38.

It is amazing how many times I have had a near miss. I am going to tell on myself here, but a near miss driving mostly. When those "misses" are over, I say to myself that I have an angel riding with me. That angel is protecting me. I know that God has plans for me and He is with me all the time. But I should change it to say that God is riding with me instead of the angel, because it really is God's protection.

I am praying that through this study that I can learn to be more confident in my faith. I remember telling Natasha when I was about to start student teaching that I had to be in control of things. I couldn't stand not knowing where I was going to have to travel to in order to student teach. I was really stressed about the distance I would be from my children and forgot that God was in control and had everything worked out. Standing right in our church, I told her that I needed to be able to control this situation. Man was I wrong. God was in control the whole time. He was teaching me to trust Him. Now looking back, I was foolish to say that, and not trust Him. God had never given me any reason to doubt Him. He had things planned the way He wanted it to go. I couldn't see the entire picture. Now I can clearly see His plan for that situation. I still have trouble when I am stressed about things I can't control to just let go and give it to God. I am improving, but I still have to remember who really is in control. I have to accept His plan, just as Mary did.

My heart was calling to Him eight years ago. I needed Him. I now need to be conscience to what He is calling me to do. I need to listen better, not get caught up in my everyday life and listen to what God wants my life to be. Not what I want my life to be.

Monday, January 10, 2011

There IS something about that Name!

When I think of His name, I think of hope, faith, promise, power, wisdom, Comfortor, Healer, Friend, my Savior. I can think of so many more things that He is.
It makes me think about my name. I know that my name does not evoke as many feelings, adjectives, or emotions as the name of Jesus. Nor should it. His Name is the most important name in my life.
I have not always known that name. I grew up in a household where religion was not taught. I don't blame my parents, I know that God had that in His Plan for me. My husband introduced me to Him. And now I cannot thank him enough for the gift he has given me. I have been a Christian now for just about eight years. And it was just eight short years ago that I had my firstborn son too.
I cannot even begin to imagine what Mary must have thought when she was told by Gabriel that she would carry and give birth to God's Son. I know that I would have been full of questions. Who was that? What am I going to do with God's Son? What will happen when I tell my family? What is so special about me? But I am so thankful that she did it.
I hope that through this study of Jesus, I can grow stronger in faith, trust Him more and let go of things that have passed or are out of my control. I want to depend less on me, and more on Him. For He is my Rock, my salvation.
So thank you Natasha, for inviting me to take part in this. You are a dear friend and I am so happy that God planned for our paths to cross.
I pray that all who choose to participate will open our hearts, eyes, minds, and souls to what Jesus is saying to us. I thank Him for what He is planning in my life and pray a that this will be a wonderful journey for us.
In Jesus' precious name, I pray, Amen.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Since the last time

I have to admit that I am terrible at keeping this blog up to date! But you know that kids and work and all the other things we do keep us so busy.

I have been hard at work until just before Christmas working with our church's school aged kiddos on a self written play! They performed it on December 22st, 2010. I was amazed at the response we got from the play! Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine a round of applause as a couple of "unsaved" boys shed one shirt to reveal another! You see, I thought that it would be awesome if we could get t-shirts for the kids to wear for the play. On the front it reads Team God. Kids who played a mission team member wore these showing the entire play. The other group was a hockey team who had not made the choice to follow Jesus...yet. They all had on the shirts, under another. At the end of the play, the hockey team does decide to accept Jesus into their hearts and lives. As they make this decision, they take off their shirt that covers the Team God shirt. As the first boy did this, I heard a few claps and other fanfare!!! Who would have thought that this small change of wardrobe would get such a wonderful response. I never even thought of this being a symbolic gesture!! God gave me that idea so that someone would be moved!

I also did something I have not done in a long, long time. I sang at church as a part of a trio. If you know me at all, you know that most of the time I'm not one for everyone looking at me. But one day, I found myself telling the music director that I would sing for Christmas...but only if someone else would sing with me. She took me up on that offer. (I hadn't sung in public since I before high school!) So for the candlelight service, I sang with the music director and the preschool choir director!

We had a great Christmas. It snowed Christmas Eve as we spent it with Ash's (Will) family. On Christmas morning, we got up early and had Christmas at our house, which was fun, and then loaded up the truck and headed to Ohio for Christmas with my family. While we were there, we spent quality time with the family that included playing in the snow!

New Year's Eve was spent with some of the greatest friends and New Year's Day was spent resting!

Now school has started again and we prepare for what's to come!