Saturday, December 26, 2009

Christmas Traditions

Hello all. Hope you are all doing well this wonderful Christmas season. Of course today is the day after Christmas (Boxing Day in the UK).

I saw on Wonder Woman Wannabe's blog that she had a Christmas tradition Link Party. I missed it! But it did inspire me to write about some of the traditions the hubster and I are starting.

We are not your typical American family. We have a few traditions that most people think is bizarre and really no one gets it unless the Lord has led them to do the same thing.

1. We do not give material gifts, we give presence, acts of service, charitable donations, etc. We do not give things that are tangible. This is our first year to cut ties with the material side of Christmas. It was a little rough at first for the family members to understand when we broke the news. We decided not to give anything this year so people can be accustomed when we give a card next year saying "a donation was made...." or "this year I will help you clean your garage...". If we are celebrating Jesus' birth we want to give Him presents in the form of love, kindness, servitude, etc. I don't get presents on my sister's birthday, do I? For us this isn't any different.

2. We don't do Santa. Period.

3. We celebrate Jesus' birth with no worldly distractions. We want Him to be our focus! Our ONLY focus! I read in another blog when I was struggling to explain our Christmas traditions something that made a whole lot of sense. She was quoting a woman who wrote a book about Christianity and Christmas. If people from a foreign country were to come into your house at Christmas time and they had never heard of the name Jesus, would they know who you served by looking at your decorations? If Santa, Reindeers or Frosty is plastered all over will they get that I am celebrating the birth of my Lord and Savior?

4. We love looking at Christmas lights. There is one street in particular in our area that is EPIC! We love it though because so many people put so much hard work and heart into those decorations.

5. We bake cookies for the fire and police departments in the area as a Thank You for serving our community all year long.

I'm sure there are plenty of other family traditions that we will start in the years to come and as we add to our family. I'm sure our house will be the most popular among the secular set, lol. We aren't here to be popular, we are here to serve the Lord. That's all we want in our lives.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Houston....Alaska


Our Nativity scene that we keep up year round.

Hey, did you know there was a Houston, Alaska? I didn't until about 12 hours ago. I hail from a little farther south in Houston, TX. I would love to go see Houston, Alaska one day mostly because it has something I desperately long for.... Snow! I love me some snow!

I had not seen real snow until this past January when my husband and I went on our honeymoon to the Pocono Mountains in Pennsylvania. I fell madly in love. Well while we were up there, I was inspired by all the winter decor items there (Moose, Black Bears etc.). I already had quite a collection of penguins and polar bears and tried to find some common ground to blend the two decor groups. Then it hit me... Alaska!

Being the weirdo who likes to research things I went on the interwebs and found out some fun facts about their wildlife. Alaska has all my favorite winter animals and the longest coast line in the US (did I mention I like the beach as well). With the exception of penguins, they are not native but sometimes find their way into Alaskan waters. So I will keep them, thanks. I think I have come up with fun decor in my opinion of course. I like to call it "Alaskan Coast." (Yes I name the themes in my house.)
Black bear wreaths. Inspired by the Nester's Fur Wreath.

They are so cuddly I could snuggle them! They are hung with plaid fleece cut to look like scarves and I liked the way they draped over the back of the door so I just dolled them up (see below).
Front entryway decor.
This is Blakeslee. I got him on our honeymoon. He inspired the whole front entryway motif.
Feather tree from Hobby Lobby.
Green, silver and white ornaments with silver glitter shells.
Cloche with wintery nest inside. I made the tassly thing with a $1 bell from Michaels and extra fabric that I had laying around.
Snowball Fight Ammunition (will spruce it up more next year).
The trunk behind our couch. I used faux polar bear fur and put some of the penguins on it.
Our mantle. The mason jars have epsom salt in them that looks like snow (thanks Inspired Room).
Eddie Ross Ornament Wreath. Mine is highly unstable. I mixed in a few breakable ornaments since I was going to hang it indoors in a stationary place.
These decorations are very preliminary. This is our first Christmas in this house so we will see how it grows.

I hope you all have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. Don't forget the real reason for the season.

Friday, December 11, 2009

The Lord Heals

Father God forgive me for not sharing this sooner! I have an awesome testimony that I cannot believe I forgot to type out. I have told a ton of people in person, but I sometimes forget to share on my blog.

Last month I attended a women's Bible study/prayer meeting with my friend Kim. She was the only one I knew there. We praised, worshipped, prayed, and gave words of encouragement to each other. It was awesome! The Lord really met us there.

While we were praying in a circle, my back was on fire. It was killing me to stand up. One woman, Cookie, asked me to come over to her and pray. So I prayed my prayer for those seeking fulfillment and looking in the wrong places. After I prayed she said "you have back problems don't you?" I told her I did. She said God wanted to heal me. I was shocked and ready!

She prayed for my hips to come into alignment and for my back pain to cease. I felt my hips move while my feet were firmly planted on the ground. It was a weird shift, but I felt it move! After she finished, she asked me to do something I have never been able to do without pain. For the FIRST TIME in my LIFE, I TOUCHED MY TOES!!!!!!

To understand what a HUGE deal this is let me give you some history. Growing up I was the "smart" one. My sister was the "pretty, athletic" one. I desperately wanted to be athletic. I couldn't be a cheerleader at our high school unless I was able to be flexible. I had never been able to touch my toes my entire life. So I would stretch for hours for days on end. I tried so hard. Nothing ever worked. I would be so frustrated and angry. Why wouldn't it work for me?

Well when I touched my toes, I burst into tears and thanking Jesus for His amazing healing! I have been able to touch my toes since and I love doing it!

Well the Monday after I was prayed for, I had to go in for X-rays for my chiropractic evaluation. That Tuesday I went in to talk to Dr. Chad to get the results. My back had improved only a little and my neck still needs alot of work (I have scoliosis). He said that my victory was in my HIPS! He showed me how they are now perfectly aligned and level! I burst into tears again (again I'm totally a crier). I hadn't had an adjustment in over a month and had been lagging in my adjustments before that. I told him what Jesus had done for me. He was so excited and told me to tell everyone. So here I am to tell you all, JESUS HEALED MY HIPS!

Monday, December 7, 2009

Unexpected

Very few things in life are planned. This past year has been proof positive of that for us. We have been on the roller coaster of our life this year. If you compared it to some of the previous years, this year would be the Viper where as other years might be the Serpent (those of you that grew up in the Houston area and went to Astroworld know what I'm talking about).

I usually wait till the last day of the year to write a recap, but I felt strongly about doing it tonight even though there is several weeks left in the year.

We started the year off like many others. Stu at work. I was at church praying in the new year (new tradition). We were both so excited about this year. We had big plans. You know that joke-Ever want to make God laugh, tell Him your plans. Well He had other plans for us.

We bought a house in March. Biggest step in our married lives thus far. It was an awesome feeling. It was not where I wanted it to be, but God gave us something so much better than what I had planned. We have a beautiful neighborhood, Jesus loving neighbors, small town feel, etc. God had set us in the place He wanted us.

We knew houses were work, but this was some serious labor. We may now be qualified as contractors (so joking). We have had roots in our guest bathroom toilet pipes, a kitchen that took FOOOOORRRREEEEEVVVVEEEEERRRR to make it usable, rodents in the attic, dead rodents in the wall a few weeks later, and not one single room in the house is complete. We wouldn't trade it for the world. God has taught us so much through this process and we have been growing in skills and spiritual gifts because of this house. My husband is a regular handyman now. He was good before, but he is now honing his skills.

In August we decided we would TTC. It was alot of prayer, indecision, and fear that got us to that point. God had put it on our hearts that now was the time. So we timidly stepped forward into the possibility of growing our family. Within two weeks we were pregnant! Completely unexpected. We thought it would be months, but no, the Lord is good.

Two and a half months into the pregnancy, we found out the baby passed away. We were heartbroken, but we have leaned on God for strength. He has taught us so many things about His perfect will for our lives. We are 100% certain that His judgements are perfect. He has healed our hearts and helped us walk into a new understanding of His love and grace.

Another thing that has cropped up in this last week, which is another part of the road we are on. Doctors found a shadow on my mother's mammogram results. She went back in today for some more testing and should get the results and the diagnosis whether she needs a biopsy on Wednesday. (Please pray if you feel lead to pray.)

I have just scratched the surface as to the plethora of things that happened this last year. So many birthdays, holidays, births, deaths, joyous occassions, sadness, arguments, laughter that make up the everyday. I have just chosen these specific ones because they are the ones with the strongest emotions attached to them.

It seems that everything that has happened to us this year has been perfect for us. That feels totally weird to type. God has our lives planned and we don't need to worry about any of the details. Everything has happened for a reason. Just because the path isn't always pretty with tulips and roses lining the road, doesn't mean it's not a good path. Our path this year has had it's share of jagged rocks and slippery stones, but we have someone who has held our hands every step of the way. I think you learn the most from the rocky, narrow path.

If you would have told us a few years ago that any of this would have happened, especially how we have come through this year, we would have laughed in your face. A few years ago, we did not have Jesus in our lives and would not have dealt with this year very well. God knew when we could handle this year. He planned it all this way. He is so gentle and faithful like that. We have found in ourselves reactions, words, thoughts, and actions that are completely unexpected to even us. We have tangible evidence of who we were then and who we are now. That transforming power is only through Jesus. We wouldn't have been able to get through any of this without Him. I guess that's the thing about Jesus, always expect the unexpected.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Birthday Recap

Sadly, no snow pics. It stopped by the time I could get around to taking pictures. Oh well, maybe it will snow later in the season (I type with a hopeful leap in my heart). Lord please let it snow again! Global warming is a total joke!

Friday, December 4, 2009

Who knew?

So it's my 28th birthday and it's snowing. Some people may say that's normal. What isn't normal is that it's HOUSTON, TX!!!! I will post pics if I can get any. It rarely snows in Houston, like once a decade. It has snowed the past two years and then two years before that. I'm so happy to have snow on my birthday. Jesus, thank you for making it snow on my birthday! It's the best birthday gift ever!

Friday, November 27, 2009

Thanksgiving Blessings

This year was great! That is pretty much the first time I can say that. Both the hubster's family and my own have a history of ugly holidays. Fights, crying, harsh words (sometimes, fisticuffs). Sad, but true.

We prayed into the Thanksgiving holiday so much this year and took authority over anything that would try to steal, kill or destroy our joy. We prayed to be the light of Christ to our families. God showed up in such a big way that it makes me cry.

On Wednesday we got to visit with the hubster's sister, baby boy Tyler =), and the hubster's mother. We had a blast. Only thing I did not cover in prayer was the topic of my miscarriage. I have such peace about it now that I forgot to pray that no one would feel weird or obligated to go out of their way for me. That was the only awkward point is when people would ask about it, like I was fragile. Of course the enemy likes to seize those opportunities when you are not prayed up in a certain area, so I did cry a little on our way home.

We played with Tyler and he is such a happy baby! We had a great lunch, shopping, and helping out around the hubster's sister's house. So much fun!

The biggest blessing of all came the next day when we had called the hubster's grandma in Alabama to wish her happy Thanksgiving. She said she had talked to his mom earlier that day and said she saw how happy we were. That made me cry! (If you can't tell I'm a crier for any ocassion.) The Lord showed His Joy through us like we had prayed and his mother could see it!

Thursday we went to my family's house out in the country. We laughed so hard we were in tears! We loved on everyone, especially the newest member of the family, Brayden. So much love flows in that place. Not everyone walks with the Lord, but love abounds there that the Holy Spirit comes to subdue any issue that may arise. I even got to minister to some cousins!

Man the Lord is good. That is only one of the countless reasons that I am thankful this year! Happy Belated Thanksgiving!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

The light at the end of the tunnel

Almost there! I repeat almost there!

I am almost finished with the physical part of miscarriage. It has certainly felt like a long month. I'm so thankful the Lord has been so good to us. He has healed our hearts and gently spoken to us through this whole process.

I have felt more physically better the last few days so I seem to be regaining some of my old get up and go. I have really come along way in my emotional, spiritual, and thought life healing as well. Yes those negative thoughts and feelings will try to creep up, but the important thing to do is to proclaim that your spirit is in charge of your mind, will and emotions.

Alot of people are amazed that I'm not depressed and I don't see that there is a need to be. All you have to do is trust the Lord and He will see you through. Yes I do cry on occasion, but the Lord holds me through those too.

I have had those moments when I see someone pregnant and I feel that twinge of "why can't that be me?" And the Lord reminds me again, "that is their path, I chose this path for you." He is always right. Praise the Lord because He is the Author of my days! The Lord gives grace when it is needed and He has given me joy for others. I can now celebrate in their bundles of joy with them rather than be jealous of their blessing. My blessing is coming and this experience too is a blessing. The Lord will use this testimony to reach many women who have suffered through child loss. I hope that one day it will speak of His glory!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Things that go bump in the night

So I'm not a fan of horror movies. I detest them! They open gateways that shouldn't be there. (I used to love them in my heathen days.) Our house has become a host of creeks, scratching, and skittering right out of a horror flick.

Trust me I'm not scared, I'm more annoyed. The creatures that have set up shop up there give us a nightly array of noise. Just now they ran from one end of the house to the other over and over again.

We have set a humane catch and release trap up there, but we have had no takers. I was sure that it was an opossum or a raccoon because they sounded so heavy. Well yesterday I looked out my window at the oaks trees in the front. I saw the HUGEST squirrels I have ever seen in my life. These things were ginormous. They lumbered from tree limb to tree limb. They were not nimble like their smaller and cuter counter parts. These things were beefy! Squirrels on steroids!

It is now entirely possible we have mutant squirrels living in our attic who are super geniuses that are too smart for our pitiful trap. I have searched the Internet and sadly have not found any pics of these freakish monsters.

I shudder to think what could happen if left unchecked...Image courtesy: Flicker


OK maybe now I'm scared. We may need to call in reinforcements...Image courtesy: Wordpress

Monday, November 9, 2009

On second thought...

So my wait wasn't completely over after all. Saturday night I had extreme pain and ended up going to the emergency clinic the next day because I still have some retained "products of conception." In other words, my miscarriage is not fully done.

The physical pain has been excruciating but I am trying my best to tough it out (not without complaining, but I'm trying to stop that too). They gave me antibiotics to prevent infection. This is supposed to buy me more time in order to pass everything naturally.

The Lord has been so faithful and is holding our hands through this. He hugged me this morning and said "Just a little longer, you can hold on. It's almost over." And I believe Him and I trust Him.

So I wait a little while longer. It's God's way of further testing our faith. I want to pass every test He gives me.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Peace

The waiting is over. The miscarriage completed yesterday. My body was still under the impression that I was pregnant so I had to help it along with drugs. I took Misoprostol and an herbal remedy a friend provided on Monday night about 8 PM.

I started cramping around 10 PM and it continued into the night. It was painful and frustrating because of the lack of bleeding. I finally started the heavy bleeding at around 7:30 AM yesterday (Tuesday). I stayed in the bathroom pretty much all day.

I was scared at first because of my lack of knowledge, but the Lord saw us through. The hubster was at my side the whole day. We both found strength we didn't know we had. It was from the wellspring that God has placed in us and the knowledge that God knows we could handle this.

I have a peace today that I haven't had in almost two weeks. I feel calm and still. Even my boss could see it today at work when she came in. I have no doubt the Lord will give us children in the future. I have no doubt that He loves us. I have no doubt that He keeps His promises. I have no doubt that He knows what He is doing and His judgements are perfect.

All that is left now: a slight tug at my heart called memory, a small tear in my eye called absence, a leap in my heart called hope, a smile on my face called joy, a knowledge in my mind called faith, a calm in my spirit called peace, and a set of arms around me called Love.

Thank You Lord for You are faithful. I will always carry that with me. You have shown us Your unfailing Love. I am reminded of the lyrics "And You said 'I know that this will hurt, but if I don't break your heart things will just get worse. If the burden seems too much to bear, remember, the end will justify the pain it took to get Us there." Lord I know You chose us to go through this because You knew we could handle it. That we could persevere. I thank You for holding us through all of this and we trust You. Thank You for the wisdom and revelation that we have had through all of this and the wisdom and revelation that is to come. We are in hopeful anticipation of Your will. Praise Your Holy Name!
Amen

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Distraction

Distractions are part of everyday life and definitely a part of the grieving process. Right now my major distractions are the creatures (probably rats) in our attic. Every time I'm in the kitchen, office, or game room at night I hear them scurry about. I have a longer more creepy story that I will wait to tell you all about.

So anyone know any good exterminators or methods of getting rid of unwanted house guests?

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Our yard, Pt. 2






Here are more of our flower bed in our front yard. Yet again sooooooooo thankful. Everything was so beautiful!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Our yard




Here are some of the pics of the yard today. What wonderful people we have in our lives! Will post more when its complete =)

Waiting...

So I have been waiting for almost a week for my miscarriage to complete. It's like everyday is Russian Roulette. "Is today the day?" It has been a very trying time. I know the Lord has always tested my patience and helped me grow, but some moments feel like torture. These are the moments when I can barely breathe, where I want to let sorrow over take me. Then I have to push back and say "MY GOD IS BIGGER!"

We have had many opportunities to let our pain become too much. We fight this tooth and nail. Once we go down that road, its so hard to come back. We keep holding onto our promises, soaking in the Word, praying for strength, and accepting love and guidance from the Lord and the great people in our lives.

Not everyone has the best advice and some people have actually made me angry. This is when I have to love them with grace. I know they mean well, but not everyone swoops in with the perfect thing to say or do.

The Lord has given us more truths to hold onto during this time:
11. He uses the least severe method to produce the greatest amount of love, in the greatest number of people in the shortest amount of time.
12. We have some really amazing friends and family members! The love we have recieved is overwhelmingly abundant.
13. Just because I feel like my heart is broken in two and one half is with the baby, means that that other half is in Heaven in Jesus' arms. What better place for it to be?
14. I will be on the other side of the bridge. Probably sooner than I know. I will be able to look back and see my starting point and see where I am and where I need to go.
15. I will be ok. My husband will be ok. We will be ok together.
16. We will have children someday (all in the Lord's timing).
17. I refuse to let fear, despair, and bitterness overtake me. This has been a struggle. I will win the fight.
18. I'm so thankful God gave us a child to begin with.
19. I'm so thankful that He knew that I could handle this.
20. I know the Lord loves me and will not leave me in this place of sadness.

We have the most amazing church family. Some of our friends stopped by our house today (the one that has so many things on the lists of repairs that its not even funny) and said they were there to landscape our yard. One of the larger tasks Stu and I have been dreading. The Lord sent them to minister to our hearts through acts of service. How AMAZING!!!! The hubster called me at work and said that he was going to cry. He told me what had happend, then I started to cry, then I told my boss and she started to cry. How touching the love of great friends can be.

Lord, Father, God, Savior, Redeemer, Friend! Thank you for showing up every day in a huge way. Thank you for being our peace and strength. Thank you for being our provider. Thank you for giving us the support we need from the people around us. Thank you for continued healing of our hearts. Lord we trust you and your judgments are perfect.
Amen

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

On loss

Everything is still so fresh. Every time someone talks to me and consoles me, I relive it. Stu and I found out this morning that our precious baby passed away a few weeks ago. We are now just waiting on the miscarriage to be complete. It is hard to even type let alone say. But I push on because writing is therapeutic for me. Not that anyone wants to read, but because I need to get it out.

We prayed for a baby. We had a promise from the Lord and we were so excited. Our prayers were answered very quickly. We found out we were pregnant on our two year anniversary. We were over joyed and ready for the blessing and challenge.

We had 9 wonderful weeks where we talked, prepared, and prayed in thanksgiving.

I had some light spotting periodically but one doctor told me its normal as well as several friends. I pushed my fears aside. I kept praying for fear to leave and faith to come. And faith did come. I was not fearful. I had no doubt the Lord wanted to give us a baby. I just didn't know it was not going to be this baby.

We were calling him Blueberry (or Bluebert or Blueopolis) until we found out what gender he was. (I will call it a he because we both had dreams it was a boy.) There were few things here and there that we would pick up at the store or at Babies R' Us. My mother, bless her heart, she had already bought the travel system and crib (without us knowing). She was just so excited for us.

I had more spotting on Tuesday and this time it was slightly heavier. I began to fear again. I knew in the pit of my stomach that something was not right. I happened to have clients at work when it was happening. They are both friends and one is my pastor. They both prayed for me to have peace and for the health of the baby. I called the birthing center to see if they could squeeze me in and they said that they could the next day (Wednesday, October 21).

I kept telling my husband that I was nervous and he was so brave and kept telling me its going to be fine. He didn't want to tell me he was unsure as well. I had this nagging feeling that our lives would change that day. We went in for our ultrasound.

When we were looking on the monitor I kept thinking everything looks so still. I saw the gestational sac and it was still small. My heart began to race. I would ask the tech what she was seeing if anything and she told me that the care provider has to go over ultrasounds with the patients. She left the room to get one of the midwives.

I was trying not to panic because what she left on the screen was our baby and he was too small to be a 9 week old baby. I knew this was it. Melanie (one of the sweetest women) came in and told us that our baby had passed away a couple of weeks ago. It was probably one of the most surreal moments I have ever had. It's like when you are waking up from a dream that felt so real and your not sure if that was reality or what your waking up to is. I instantly started to cry. I had two sets of thoughts: "No, this is not happening" and "Oh no, this is really happening."

It was hard to look at my husbands face through all of this. He cried but was so quiet. It's hard to see the man you love in pain.

She was consoling us and helping explain things and I told her that we know the Lord has a plan. I don't think she was expecting that. She said the best thing to do is to let my body pass the baby naturally because my body will heal faster.

She said we could stay in the room as long as we needed. Our pastor (totally a God thing) had called to check on us because he had prayed for us the day before. I told him the sad news and he prayed with us over the phone in that ultrasound room. You never understand how comforting prayers are until you have been saved and you truly need it.

The tech came back in and told us she was so sorry and she was not allowed to give us that news legally. I told her it was OK and she hugged me. We got to the car and began to "rip the band-aid off" by calling family members so they could start telling the rest of the family. We knew that would be very hard. Telling people over and over.

We came home and prayed, cried, numbed ourselves with movies, took calls when we felt strong enough too, and mostly just were together. We both talked about it and there are unshakable truths to this whole situation.
1. Our baby is in heaven with the Lord. We are so happy for him! He does not have to go through this rough life.
2. Our baby's mission in life is complete. His time was short, but he had a purpose. We are so proud of him for completing his purpose in all of our lives.
3. The Lord does have a plan. We trust His will.
4. We have hope. The Lord has given us a promise and He will complete in me the good work He started. The Lord is faithful.
5. We have faith and are rebuking fear. We are not scared or angry, we have faith that we will see the Lord's glory in all of this.
6. We want to display the Lord's glory in this situation. We want those around us to know that we love the Lord in good times and bad and that His judgements are perfect.
7. He is healing my heart faster than I expected. He is giving me more joy than sorrow.
8. We will miss our little one. There was this little bundle that we were so excited to meet. Now that it is gone we miss him.
9. We know we will meet our little one someday.
10. We know that this experience will always be with us. It will be a bittersweet memory forever. But I hope we can look back and say wow, look at what God did!

I know we have much more to learn from this experience and I'm open to receive these lessons.

Thank You, Lord for giving us such a great gift and we know that children are not ours, but on loan from you. You send them when they are needed here and call them home when they are needed there. I trust everything You have for us. I believe in Your will and will follow it all the days of my life.
Amen

*This took me a few days to write because of all the emotions behind it.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

The Joy.... Pt 2

Of the Lord is my strength. Does a certain scripture sometimes pop up at you over and over. It usually happens when you need it most. It is the Lord's gentle reminder that He is your Rock and Fortress.

I'm up super late again and this time its because of morning sickness. Most women would groan at that phrase and yes I groan at the experience to some extent. But I find joy in my morning sickness, achy muscles, headaches, foggy brain, and random leg cramps. Mostly because the Lord will complete in me the good work He started.

Another reason this scripture comes to mind (and another reason I am up so late) is my husband and I decided to be bold for the Lord with family members and it ended not so well. The decision was a hard one, but we were obedient to His word. This has been on our hearts for over a year and it has finally come into the light and we are left with roaches scattering trying to find a safe place to dwell again.

I have no doubt that we made the right decision. I have no doubt that the Lord will take care of us. I just feel weary and its only beginning. This is why "The Joy of the Lord is my Strength!" I know I can find joy in this situation. If I can find it in adversity, if I can find it in a loss, if I can find it in the darkest places in my life, heck if I can find it in morning sickness, I can find it in this. If His Joy strengthens, then Lord bring on the JOY!

I submit this prayer request. Please pray for us and our family members who do not understand the choices and decisions we make based on our relationship with the Lord, Jesus Christ. Please pray for the joy that strengthens to reside in our hearts.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Oh that brain of mine

Insomnia has kicked in at 1:20 AM. I'm hoping my brain will slow down so I can go back to sleep. I am after all creating a new life and need the rest. The hubster came home from his job and I was wide awake.

I think it is all the plotting and planning for baby's arrival. I searched for gender neutral fabric all Saturday and alas found none that I liked. Then when he came home I started thinking about all the cute things I could do to the room and then all stuff we will need to baby proof the house. Now my brain is racing. Hopefully a little internet surfing will help slow things down.

Sweet dreams to all of you out there that are still up and trying to sleep. I'm praying for rest for all of us.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

The Lord is Faithful

A tiny announcement! We are expecting!!!!! Ok, not so tiny after all. We are so excited to be expectant parents.

We found out on our anniversary and confirmed with the doctor that Wednesday. We are about 6 weeks along at this point.

The Lord is faithful and blesses obedience. We had been struggling with the decision for awhile and the Lord had been pressing on our hearts. So we said ok, Lord, your our Father, Provider, and the Author of our days. We ttc for less than a month and God blessed us!

We cannot wait to meet our little one. I will update on baby soon!

Monday, September 14, 2009

So Thankful



I'm so thankful for the wonderful man God has fashioned for my life. Happy 2 year Anniversary honey! I love you more than words can describe!

Friday, September 11, 2009

September 11th

I remember everything about 9-11-01. I even remember what I was wearing (black quarter sleeve blouse, khaki pants with frayed legs, and black boots). Eight years ago today, I was standing in my bathroom getting ready for my college classes for the day. As I walked out I saw that my sister was watching Regis & Kelly. I paused to see who was on that day when the news interrupted the show for breaking news.

I saw the smoldering building of the World Trade Center and I thought "what a horrible accident." Then the second plane hit and I thought "now that's not normal." But I didn't think it was an attack. I didn't listen to the radio on the way to class because I didn't want to hear about all the people dead or dying. I wanted to stay in my secure bubble and not listen to the bad things going on outside of my safe haven. When I got to school, our Texas history professor was so distraught and he said to go home, watch the news, class was cancelled.

Everyone converged on the student center to watch the big screen TV. We watched in horror as report after report came in. Terrorists had come to our land and killed out people. My secure bubble was popped.

We all have our "where were you when 9-11 happened" stories. We all felt strong emotions that day. Many of us still do. I pray today for the families that lost someone. I pray for the families of those who hijacked the planes. I pray for their salvation. I pray for protection. I pray for those still serving in the war. I pray for our nation.

Alot of praying goes on on days like today. What we need to do is not just pray today, but pray everyday for all these things. Immediately after 9-11 churches were full every Sunday for a month. A revival in America, but it was short lived. We settled back into our complacency and God became silent in many lives again.

It's not that God is silent, it's that we are not listening. We need to seek Him first in all things. We need to pray what's on His heart. The only way to know what's on His heart is to listen. We need to become sensitive to His voice. And we need to do it willingly, wholeheartedly.

I read on someone's Facebook status a few days ago, something that shook me to the core. "If God where to answer all of your prayers today, what would change? Your world or THE world?" This has been a big area of conviction for me. How often do we seek what is on our hearts and not God's? I know I can answer "not enough".

Let's press in for our nation, state, city, neighborhood, street. Let's pray for those around us. Let's pray for God's will to come to our minds. Let's pray for God to make His presence known in our city, state, and nation. Let's thank Him for the freedom we enjoy and ask that it not be taken away from us. Let's thank Him for those who give their lives for this country. But let's pray this everyday!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Book Review: Peace by Piece


The amazing true story of Peter Loth written by his daughter Sandra Kellog Rath. He recounts his life in post WWII Poland. How he grew up, was sent to orphanages, torn away from the only mother he had known several times, abused horrendously, and suffered rejection everywhere he went all because of a heritage he knew nothing about.

Peter came to learn much later in life after cultivating a spirit of bitterness, that he was born in Stutthoff concentration camp in Poland and his real mother had given him to a Polish woman to save his life. He experienced rejection everywhere he lived because he was a Jew and the hatred did not leave after the war was over.

He grew up with hatred and revenge in his heart. It wasn't until he went back to Poland as a man that Jesus showed him the way of forgiveness. He also began to learn about his past and ministering to those around him about this incredible testimony.

Peter came to our church a few months ago and shared some of his story and some very disturbing and graphic images from the Holocaust. Every single person was moved to tears. He is an incredible man! He is very Spirit led and has powerful discernment.

I also had the privilege to interview him at the radio station I work at. He was such a delight and the presence of the Lord filled our entire studio.

I highly recommend this book along with Corrie ten Boom's book. They both recount a very dark time in our history that we most certainly will see again in the future.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

The power of life and death...

Is in the tongue. We can speak words of life into a situation or we can speak death.

In my toddler like walk with the Lord, I find myself asking this question often. How do you deal with people who constantly speak death?

For example, when talking about a particular person and asking an opinion about something you want to tell them, they immediately say "oh they won't recieve that" or "they will never listen to you." Other common phrases usually heard are "they will never change," "why even bother", "I hope they get what's coming to them", "I'm not going to even try", "you will never get the things you want", etc. Many people don't know that what you speak is alot of the time what happens in the situation.

It's like going into a situation prepared to fail and fully expecting to. What if we stepped out of the way, spoke words of life and fully expected God to bring the victory? How would that change the atmospheres we are in?

I know I'm guilty of this offense of speaking death, but now that I'm more aware of it I try to take my thoughts captive and speak life instead. I want to change atmospheres around me. I want to take authority whereever I go, but by speaking life by casting out things that hinder love and saying and expecting great things to happen because they are of our Father in Heaven.

On the other side of all of this, now that I'm more aware of it, I also notice how often others speak death into the situations of others, themselves, and even me (and to my face). I have had people openly curse me to my face not knowing they are speaking death into my life.

How do you gently correct that? Does it have to be gentle (cause sometimes I really don't want to be)? How do you rebuke the curse of another so that it does not bear fruit in your life?

These are the questions I want to know. It has haunted me for a few months and it seems more pertinent now. The Lord has really put it on my heart to look for answers. Anyone know of any particular scriptures?

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Book Review: The Hiding Place


I just finished reading The Hiding Place by Corrie ten Boom. This amazing story of bravery and faithfulness has stirred my spirit!

Corrie ten Boom was an extraordinary Christian woman who helped hide and transport Jews during World War II in the underground resistance in Haarlem, Holland. She and her family were captured and imprisoned. She and her sister were the ones to make it to a Nazi termination camp. She and her sister refused to let hatred eat them up and chose to bless their captors and minister to those around them in the camp.

This book touched my heart in a special way. I could not put it down and cried, laughed, rejoiced, and anguished over each and every person in the book. I was so moved and have recommended it to many people so far. There are so many deep truths that her Father (both here on earth and her Heavenly Father) shared with her over this time of imprisonment.

She survived the termination camp to tell how God's grace and guidance saw her through. She became an amazing evangelist for the Lord, travelling worldwide to share God's love.

Her story has given me a deeper thirst for the Lord. I want to be so fervently seeking the Lord that I can forgive and love my enemies without question in my heart. It also has made me want to examine our current world situation and think about if it were to happen again in my lifetime. Some great things to ponder and seek the Lord about!

Wonderful book. Suggested to all!

Friday, August 7, 2009

A Call to Intercession...

By now most every American has heard about the Health Care Bill that is being proposed by President Obama. Some are for and some are against.

I have heard alot about this bill and will most definitely say that I am against it! Whole heartedly against it. It feels like the liberal contingents in the nation are spitting on the foundation of our nation with this bill.

Universal health care does not work and never will work. The Former Prime Minister of Italy, Silvio Berlusconi, came to AMERICA to have his heart operation. Italy has universal health care and even the prime minister knew that he would not recieve proper care. Doctors from Canada come in droves to the U.S. because they can actually build a life here.

If you actually sit down and read some of what is proposed it will make you cringe. Mandatory counseling for the elderly on euthinasia, government interference with marriages, tax payers pay for abortions, birth limits on how many kids a family can have (Hello China!), government say on who lives and dies... The list goes on.

It is not God's will for a nation to support any of these things. He is grieved by these things and it is time for intercessory prayer to help change the hearts of lawmakers. We need to seek Him in all these things to come. We need to look at the wisdom of our founding fathers. They had wisdom that surpassed their generation. They knew what it took to make the nation great and I think it's time we refresh ourselves on our history. It is time to fall on our knees and repent.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

The Joy...

Photo taken from flickr
Of the Lord is my strength!

The Lord showed up in a BIG way this past weekend. This past week I have felt renewed passion for Him and a renewed sense of love from Him. The Lord has opened the door to my heart and has been pouring into it.

My darling friend Kim spent Saturday with me and we had the BEST time. We had great fellowship and enjoyed each other's company. Things got intense when we returned to my house after I lost my wallet at the movies (only negative blip on the radar screen this weekend). She hung with me while I cancelled debit cards and such. Then we started talking about the Lord and all the revelations we had been having recently.

The experience following the start of the conversation was unbelievable! The Holy Spirit was so thick in our abode that we were overwhelmed with joy. We were silly, we laughed, we praised God with gladness. He revealed serious things to us that we were totally joyful for. It is so much that it's almost hard to describe.

We prayed for our lives, for our husbands, for whatever the Lord laid on our hearts. I have been craving this breakthrough for so long. We had the most enjoyable day with the Lord.

I hope that everyone can feel the Joy of Jesus! I pray for widespread revelation of His Joy to each and every heart. Pray for Him to open your eyes, hearts, and spirits to greater understanding of Him!

Friday, June 26, 2009

Tyler Dale

10 tiny fingers...

1 cute button nose...


One happy new mom...
One proud papa...


Welcome to the world Tyler Dale. Born 6/17/09 at 5:43 PM. Weight: 10 lbs 6 oz. Length 21 inches long. We love you, thank God for you and pray for a happy healthy life for you. Praise God for this little miracle. Don't believe me on the weight, scroll down. He was a hefty one, lol.

Blessings to you my sweet nephew!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

June 17, 2009...

Our sweet nephew Tyler is being born today! The sis-in-law is up at the hospital as I type. I'm trying to get out of work as soon as possible. I have clients in and I'm getting anxious. I keep eyeing the clock and screaming with my brain "hurry up!".

I'm so excited. The hubster is too cause this is his first time being an uncle! I will post pics soon.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

The day is ending....

The Lord knew I needed encouragement and He sent it my way in His perfect timing. I'm rejoicing! He sent me on a mission several years ago. I have grown weary and needed push after push over the last few weeks. I have tried to persevere. It has been difficult, but God is bringing the back up I need!

A dear friend of mine came by today and I told them my story about loving with boundries and taking a step back. They told me that they knew my struggle and that if my mission were thought of as a day, I would be in the late afternoon. WHEW! I was worried I was still in the morning!

The Lord has provided the people and support I need to get through. I was so worried that I was being selfish by taking the step back. But God is the one releasing me to do this. Oh that devil is a tricky liar. It's not that I don't want this mission, its just that as this mission has matured, there is less need of my ministry services in this particular area. It is finally happening. THANK YOU LORD! THANK YOU LORD! Seriously I can't shout it enough!

God is faithful and He is so kind to give what is needed at the right time!!!!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

House update

Just letting you know that our house is coming along quite nicely. It has been almost 3 months since we have lived there and still no pictures yet, but they will be up soon. We forced ourselves into a deadline. We said that we would host our church small group this month which is the third Sunday of the month. We have until June 21st to get a substantial portion done on the house to make it entertainable.

The kitchen is almost done, working on cabinet doors, drawers, looking for a screen door to cut down for our pantry, and all around organizing and unpacking. Guest bathroom needs to be painted, decorated, new light fixture, and a new toilet installed (don't want everyone going through our bedroom to get to the toilet). Hallway needs to be painted, pictures hung and a new light fixture. The other two bedrooms are fine for now because they will be future kid's rooms and we don't want to bother with them right now.

We need to install a new toilet in our bathroom as well. Front entryway needs to be repainted (wrong color green is on the walls right now which makes it look like minty fresh). The craft room/office needs some serious organization! Which my friends Julia and Carrie have so wonderfully offered to help.

Our game room will be last on the list which doesn't neccissarily have to be done before our small groups, just before our house warming party (which we hope to host a month later in July).

Some other repairs needing to be made: New french doors to our back patio (which needs to happen soon), new front door (which can wait for a while), gutters, outdoor landscaping, fill dirt, and in the fall we need new insulation.

Man when I put it down on blog, it looks like a never ending list. Which I know everyone says, "you are never done with your house" and I believe that, but it almost seems unattainable. I just have to keep reminding myself, "I think I can" like the train or "just keep swimming" like Dory.

God is good and He is faithful! We are so blessed to be working on a house! Our house!

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Mother's Day

First off:  Happy Mother's Day to all mothers, future mothers, like-a-mothers, aunts, sisters, daughters, etc.  Hope you all have a wonderful day and you rejoice with your family as they celebrate YOU!

I have the honor of having two moms.  My mother and my grandmother!  They both were my mother if you can follow me on this one.

My mother had a very unfortunate accident when she was young that caused her to have epilepsy.  She could not sustain a job when we were young that would provide adequate health care due to her condition.  So when I was 7 and my sister was 8, my grandmother and grandfather adopted us in order to provide for us.  This was a huge turning point in our lives as you can imagine.

My mom continued to be there, but her role as mother was fading.  I know this was horribly unfair to everyone involved because my mom felt horrible for having to make that choice, my grandparents were upset because they could no longer be our grandparents, and we kids could not understand any of this.  We were so confused.

My grandfather passed away shortly after the adoption was finalized.  So it left me, my sister, my mom and grandma in the house with each other.  My mom eventually remarried and moved out and we were with my grandmother until we went off to college.  She was our legal mother after all.

We did not see her side of things for a long time because it seemed so unfair.  We wanted to be with our mommy.  Little did we know that we got the best of both worlds.

Only looking back now after life has grown me up quite a bit (I have more to go of course), can I understand the sacrifice they both made to give us the best life possible.  My grandmother raised me with integrity, strength, character, belief in God, morals, a sense of right and wrong, hard work, ethics, essentially everything I will need in life to be a good person.  My mother raised me with kindness, gentleness, belief in God, caring, compassion, generosity, tender heartedness, unconditional love, essentially everything I will need in life to be a good person.  

My grandmother passed away almost two years ago now and it was heartbreaking.  I wish I would have told her more that I loved her and that I respected her.   I wish I would have thanked her more for all that she did.

My mother and I have become better friends (we were pretty great friends before, but it just gets better and better).  I try to tell her how much I love her and respect her and am thankful to her, but I know I don't do it enough.  I will strive to do better.  I do not want a day to go by that I don't thank God for her.  

I can now look back at the facts of the situation then and not have those teenager-ish emotions of entitlement, anger, unfairness, etc.  I never lacked in love.  I always had their love and support. I have had a wonderful life, due in large part to these two women.  I love them both and am so appreciative of what they have done and continue to do for me.  
 
They both had their strong suits and they both instilled it in me.  For that I am truly grateful.  I praise and thank God the day He made these two women and I thank Him even more that He made them my mothers.  

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

The Hardest People to Minister To...

That would be our families. How is it the people we are closest to, we feel we cannot speak candidly about our faith? We love these people so much and we want to see them in the new kingdom.

I find it particularly difficult because it can cause rifts in a family when one segment is saved and others are not. My husband and I are experincing this right now. We both have a love for our family, but there is only a small portion that can truly understand.

We are the "crazy Christians" lol. I have felt called to pray for these people and pray for the lost in general. God is wanting me to cry out to Him about all the lost in all the nations. I have felt the deep desire He has for our family as well.

I want to seek His guidance in this issue and learn to discern where each member is at so that I can more effectively share The Word. I feel that in our flesh we want these members to love us and feel that they will no longer love us if we discuss our faith with them. I have seen it time and time again were one person is ousted because of their faith in Jesus Christ.

I have the wonderful privaledge of knowing several people who are in the same boat as the hubster and I. One good friend told about she has nothing to do with her family or her husband's because they are atheists and literally hate their transformation. This makes me weep.

Why is Jesus's name so offensive? The only answer that I can think of in my limited mind is the fact that people will hate us because they hate Him. This too makes me weep. How can anyone hate our Perfect Father in Heaven? He created us and knows our every hair on our heads.

Another thing that comes to mind is that they are so wrapped up in themselves that they cannot see what God wants for them. He wants the best becauce he only gives the best!

I spoke with a friend at church about this heart cry God has given me and she said that she prays Ephesians 1:17-19 17 (I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit[f] of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better. 18I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, 19and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is like the working of his mighty strength) for her son everyday. It made me want to hug her. I could not imagine the heartbreak she must feel as a mother who's child is lost.

I want to encourage you that you may join the cause. That you may pray in unity with me and others in the Body of Christ in our prayer for the lost.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Aint no party....

Like a TEA Party!  It was awesome I must say.  

I originally went to support our station KAFR 88.3 FM (heard in the North Houston area) because we are active in these issues.  (Nice plug huh!)    I do believe in what the TEA Party stands for, but was not ready for the impact it had on our community and nation.  

Final count when we left the Party, we asked how many people registered when they came in and it was 7,500!  And to think of the people that didn't register that just showed up and bypassed the tables altogether.  Sadly I was one of those people because I got there late and was frantically looking for our table.  

I do think we have been Taxed Enough Already.  I do believe that conservative opinions and media have been given a bum rap.  When did the word conservative become a four letter word?  Apparently we are considered "extremists".  How extreme is it to think that we should have fair taxes?  How extreme is it to believe that you are paid a fair wage for an honest days work instead of waiting for a government handout?  It seems like common sense to me and 7,500+ people in my area.  

I want my future children to grow up with a higher standard of living.  I fear the legacy being passed down to them will lower the bar.  Our government has been horribly flawed for years, but this new administration has spent more money in the first few months than other administrations did in 4 years. 

Our nation started out blessed and has gone away from the Bible's teachings over the years.  We have become a secular nation and for that I am sad.  Our nation needs to get back to the basics.  That we are governed both corporately and individually by an absolute Truth.  

I pray daily for our nation.  I pray for repentance and for our hearts to turn to Him.  

One sign that a young girl was carrying around that really hit home said  "The democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not."  Those prophetic words were spoken by Thomas Jefferson.   This is the same man that penned the Bill of Rights and Constitution.  He knew full well what a good government should be.  Something else he said that is especially true is "A democracy is nothing more than mob rule, where fifty-one percent of the people may take away the rights of the other forty-nine. "

I encourage you to get involved with a stance, any stance.  I would prefer you choose my side (but then debate would never exist).  Because "if you don't stand for something, you will fall for anything."

I will leave you with one last Jefferson quote that spurs me more than ever to seek the Truth in all things political, spiritual, economic, etc.  "All tyranny needs to gain a foothold is for people of good conscience to remain silent."  

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Here to tell the truth

I'm not here for you to like me, I'm here to tell the Truth! God calls us to tell the truth. His Truth. Which is Jesus Christ. And on this Resurrection Sunday, I am compelled to tell the truth.

My husband and I do not celebrate Easter or Christmas in the traditional sense. We love the Lord Our God with all our hearts, but these celebrations are not for Him. The Lord revealed to us over the last year and a few months of being born again that these celebrations are paganizations of what we believed were wholly Christian celebrations.

It has been a shock, but God has been gentle with us. Who doesn't love a jolly fat man and a guy dressed up as a bunny? Well, frankly me...now. I used to love these holidays, but after reading the facts, my spirit cannot reconcile the traditions together with the doctrine.

And the doctrine in The Word is thus:
2 Corinthians 6:14-16 (KJV): Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infedel? And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.

I will celebrate however, the awesome power of God. The miracle of Jesus' birth, His sacrifice at the cross, and the glorious day He rose from the grave to give us life eternally. We have done away with pagan traditions and mass marketing ploys (Santa, Easter Bunny, Eggs, Trees, etc). We will be the most popular house on the block, lol.

But, we are not here for a popularity contest, we are here to obey God. Whatever He asks, we will do obediently.

I'm also not here to condemn anyone who participates. I'm just doing what God has called me to do. I know plenty of Christians who celebrate each of these holidays to varrying degrees because the Lord has led them to those conclusions (i.e. No Santa, but a tree. Santa and a Tree, but focus on Jesus. No Santa, no tree, etc. No bunny, but egg hunts. The list could go on).

I just felt compelled today to pour out my heart on these matters because it is so strong that I cannot shake it. I am thankful for this Sunday because it reminds me of what an awesome God we have. I love Resurrection Sunday, Good Friday and Maundy Thursday. All are wonderful to observe, but we will do it with less chocolate...

If you want to do some research of your own here are some helpful websites:
http://www.religioustolerance.org/easter1.htm
http://www.lasttrumpetministries.org/tracts/tract1.html
http://www.history.com/content/easter/pagan-origins

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Who loses a king size mattress...

On South Bound I-45 at 9 PM in the evening? That would be me!

A good friend of ours was gracious enough to let us borrow her king size mattress and box springs as they are very expensive and we already have so many other expenses with the new house and all. I was so excited because the rest of our furniture came in today and I wanted to surprise the hubster.

The plan was to go pick up the mattress on the sly and get it back to the house and set it all up. Well, the first part worked out, not so much the last part. I got to my friends house and loaded up the mattress. We started heading from her place in Willis down to our place in Shenandoah. Apparently we didn't get far. As soon as got onto the freeway and picked up speed to the speed limit. The mattress was gone (box springs were fine btw)!

I am borrowing my dad's truck and it is such a smooth ride I didn't even feel it. I couldn't see it either because my back window was blocked by all the stuff in the cab. My friend was following me with one of her friends. They both did not see it until they passed it up. Even my friend didn't see it, her friend did (she thought he was crazy).

Well both trucks turned around and started our search and rescue mission. We were all concerned for the safety and well being of our fellow drivers as well as the mattress not being damaged. When we went back (not even 5 minutes had passed) the mattress was GONE! Almost as if it never was there. We drove past so many times and we saw no trace.

I'm not going to be angry or upset about this situation because really it is laughable. Who loses a king size bed on the freeway? Will I laugh about this story 10 years from now? Absolutely, I'm laughing right now as a matter of fact. It was an unforseeable event that occured and was unavoidable. No use in crying over spilled milk.

Don't get me wrong, do we need the extra expense of a new mattress? No, but obviously someone saw the mattress on the road and picked it up. They probably needed it more than we did anyway. I hope it blesses them.

It's funny how you view things through a new life perspective. It makes the bad stuff not seem so bad and the random crisis seem funny. It's all in your response. Are you going to sweat it out until you have a nervous breakdown, heart attack, or stroke? No, absolutely not! I know who my provider is and He is the only one who knows what is next for me and mine. I think I will stand in His line!

Monday, March 23, 2009

On the topic of revenge...

I was whole heartedly convicted at church yesterday. We are learning about Revelation and the End Times. The sermon led to the topic of offense, revenge and forgiveness. I was so moved I cried.

I hate to say it, but I do find myself plotting "I'll show them" moments on occassion. It is hard to admit, but I do. I despise that about myself. I think it all started with my stubborn attitude when I was little. When someone would tell me "you can't do that," my famous phrase would pop up "I'll show you!". I never thought about it as revenge, but it is. Even if it is something great we are going to accomplish, it is still a revengeful attitude.

The whole thing is about changing your attitude towards people and situations. If we are doing something good out of bad motivations, that makes what we are doing null and void. We need to do things out of the GOODNESS of our heart and not to PROVE A POINT!


Romans 12:19: Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God's wrath, for it is written: "It is mine to avenge; I will repay," says the Lord.
Revenge is God's. Not ours. If we take up the offense we end up looking like the fool. If we put it in God's hands where it belongs, he can vindicate and fight for us better than we ever could.


I literally struggle with this daily. I have a few people in my life that I want to just shake and say "how can you give me an unfair judgement! You don't even know me!" I have not done this though I really want to. But I have not fully given the offense to God. I have to a measure, and I have been given a measure of favor in return. If I give it all to God he will make it good. Because he works all things for good!


Words to live by: Romans 12:20-21
On the contrary: "If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head." Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.


I know I need to start checking my motivations and also discern the motivations of others. I will be continually praying this into my life because I do want to love and do good things, but with a clean and pure heart. Not a heart that wants to "show them" how good I can be.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Mission Statement

This is not so much a real mission statement as an update to individual missions God has placed on the hearts of those around me.

Today is a powerful day! Do you feel it in the air? I know I do!

I want to start off by saying that God gives people areas where he wants each of us to minister, whether to a group, individual, intercession for something on His heart, etc. I know my mission and it is to minister to people on an individual level and I praise God for this! This may not last forever he may call me to intercession for world events or call me to minister to groups. I'm waiting on his direction, but this is where he has planted me so far.

I have been called to minister to a specific individual and we have been good friends for years now. She has a plethora (sp?) of medical issues and I went with her a few weeks ago when she had to call the on call doctor at her doctors office to come in on a Saturday. He was quick, efficient, and seemed to genuinely want to get to the bottom of things. We left the office and I looked at her and said, "that's your new doctor." Her other doctors were not helping her and this guy took time away from his family to be there to help her and not just "patch her up" and send her on her way. He really wanted to find the problem and address it.

She went in for her checkup today, with this new doctor, and she got to minister to him! He has a deep hurt from losing his 4 year old daughter a few years ago. She drowned in their swimming pool. He told her he is angry at God and doesn't know how to fix that. She looked him in his tearfilled eyes as he was confessing these things unsolicited and she told him, "God gave up his child too." She told him this to remind him that God knows that pain all too well and he empothizes! She called to tell me how it all went and I had to rejoice! I praise God that she is picking up her missions as well.

My dear husband is at a funeral today for a good friend's father. He was a wonderful, well loved, and well lived man. He struggled with cancer for a few years and the Lord called him home. I believe my husbands presence is ministering to the family and is also being ministered to in return. I continue to pray for the family because losing a loved one is difficult.

I feel so renewed today because of all of this! Praise God for His swiftly moving hand throughout our lives!

Sunday, March 1, 2009

The Windows to the Soul...

Psalm 27:4One thing I ask of the LORD, this is what I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the LORD and to seek him in his temple.

God revealed himself to me in a very powerful way today at church. I have been going to this church for over a year now and have strongly felt that I was called to this church along with my husband.

For the past year I have felt a slight disconnect with the other members. I didn't feel like I belonged, like I was not worthy of joining this fellowship. I have felt that my husband fit in perfectly, but not me for some reason. I thought I was still too "bad" to be allowed to operate fully at the church. And it was my own insecurities and the lies the enemy has planted. Never the less, I felt the seperation.

I did not want to feel the seperation. I wanted to feel like I belonged, that there was a place for me there. I went to church this morning not expecting a change in my feelings, but there was one. A HUGE one!

When I walked through the doors, the air was different. I taught my Sunday school class and they responded to the lesson more than they ever have (not that the kids are unruly in any way, because they are 99% of the time little angels!).

I got into the sanctuary for worship time and it was like God had removed this film over my eyes and I could see clearly for the first time. I looked around the room and everyone was so beautiful! It's like they were all glowing from the inside out. I was just stunned at the beauty of God flowing from every single person! I would look into their eyes and I literally saw God starring back at me. I cannot describe how amazing that felt.

At that moment, I felt the connection. Whatever was holding me back, no longer was there. It was removed and I loved every single person, member or visitor, it didn't matter. I was part of something bigger. It was something that I felt was missing and now was found! I was connected to all these amazingly wonderful people through Jesus Christ!

I was marvelling at his beauty. I saw his beauty in the way a child touched his mother's hair. I saw his beauty in the sincerity in which the worship leader sang. I was literally awestruck and dumbfounded. I'm surprised I can even put it into words (very poorly I might add) right now. I could never find the exact words to describe God's beauty.

I sat amazed. Then our awesome pastor stepped forward and asked for people to come up and tell about how they feel God is beautiful. I was amazed yet again. But I still could not find the words. I did not go forward, because I could not even voice it till after church was over for hours. I think God had shown me a glimpse of his love for everyone and it was a private revelation at the moment. I think he was trying to break those insecurities off of me by showing me his amazing grace.

I stand before you all now a free woman. I am released from those shackles that held me down for so long. I no longer need to worry and fret over who does and does not like me or whether I should have not said something at the risk of sounding silly. He came and healed that part of me today and I know it will be a fight to keep those old wounds from coming back, but I know this part of my life is over. PRAISE GOD!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Verse of the Week...


I frequently visit Biblegateway.com for several reasons. One thing I enjoy is their verse of the day. Some speak to me more than others, but today's really hit me.
“Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.”- 1 John 4:11-12

To love one another is one of the hardest things we as humans will ever have to do. I find it so difficult to smile and say loving things to someone who cuts you off in traffic, the naysayers, etc. It is a daily struggle. I have not acheived the goal of loving my family and friends as God would want us to, let alone strangers I come across.

The love I speak of is unconditional. It is unrelenting, unyeilding, unshakeable love. God loves us so much and he loves us without the condition of "what's in it for me." It is the most unselfish open love anyone will ever experience.

I want to be able to love someone in the face of resistence. I want to love everyone equally. I want to have someone yell at me and I can look at them and say "I love you." Not that I really want someone to yell at me, but I want the ability to love in the face of danger to myself, my loved ones, or what may come.

I have felt the change in me since my salvation. I have had more compassion for people, which I didn't think was possible. I do have a considerable amount of compassion for people to begin with, but I always thought it was a negative attribute. My mother is so incredibly tender hearted and would cry at the drop of a hat and I saw it as weak. I thought I was weak because I do care for people and when they take advantage of the compassion it hardens your heart. I felt I was being hardened and I want to break that down and become vulnerable again.

I have also been able to discern peoples motivations. When they are mean or ugly to me or people I know, I can have sympathy for them because I know where their heart is. And that place is so much harder to deal with. It makes me want to hug them for their struggle and tell them its ok, God is on their side.

One thing my boss has repeated from one of her former bosses is "You can't let what people do to you harden your heart to others." This is so true, but so often we let those wounds cover our heart and develop scar tissue. Scar tissue is much harder than regular tissue and when you feel you have been wounded too much you heart becomes one large callous to the outside world.

I have developed the survival instinct of "What's In it for Me" and I don't want to live like that anymore. I want to love with reckless abandon. With complete vulnerability. And I won't be scared to get hurt because I won't be. Because it will be God's love flowing through me. He pours out His Spirit everyday.

I want to be a jar of clay, a vessel for His love. This means taking less offense and taking a leap of faith.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Book Review: The Five Love Languages


Twice in one day? Just thought I would catch up and answer the call.

I have been reading "The Five Love Languages" by Gary Chapman. First off it is incredible! It has revolutionized my marriage in a way I would have never of imagined.

It is also helpful for any relationship especially if you are having trouble communicating love to someone. As children of God we are all called to "love thy neighbor as thyself." This is not always easy.

It explores how we communicate love to our spouse (and others). Our method we choose may not be the best for the individual you are trying to show love to. Let me illustrate:

The five love languages are: Words of Affirmation, Quality Time, Gifts, Acts of Service, and Physical Touch. Rarely is a couple using the same language. You read the book then take the quiz in the back to show what areas speak to you most.

I have three major areas and they are: Quality Time, Acts of Service, and Words of Affirmation.
My husband's three major areas are: Physical Touch, Quality Time, and Words of Affirmation.

We were similar in the fact that we both valued quality time and words of affirmation, but those areas needed work because we were not "speaking" them properly. Also, the two major areas that differed were areas that were vitally important and we had no idea.

For example: I love it when my hubby does things around the house, fills up my car, or takes out the trash for no specific reason and without instruction.
My hubby loves just holding my hand when we are sitting next to each other, having a nice little smooch, or a big bear hug.

I love cuddling, but not all the time. He loves cuddling, but he likes it 98% of the time. I'm more like 75%. I did not know how important this was to him and when I didn't want to cause I was distracted or doing something else, it actually felt like rejection to him.

I can't tell you how heartbroken I felt when I discovered this. I never would have wanted him to feel rejected because he is always loved and wanted. By my rejecting his strongest love language "physical touch" I was "saying" to him "you are not wanted." I was not showing him the love the way he needed to be shown.

Our relationship is better than ever. Not that it was horrible before, but we have unlocked a new door in our lives. We have broken down the barrier of lack of communication by saying hey I need an extra hug or my love tank is only half full today (you will understand when you read the book, lol).

If you are having struggles in any relationship in your life, I suggest reading this book. It will make a world of difference!

It's been awhile...

Just thought I would update the look since it is getting towards spring.  The hubby and I have been super busy and the Lord has put so many things on my heart to type out in blog, but I have regretfully let it slip away from me.  Everytime I would put it off for a "better" time (and honestly what better time is there than the present) and would come back to put in on the blog, the inspiration had gone.  That is what happens when you do not obey His voice.  He may find someone else to do your job.  I will do my best from now on to be obedient to my calling.  Thank you Lord that I have one.

My husband and I have a house that we are looking to close on in a few weeks!  We are so excited. God has worked out everything in his timing and this is the place He is leading us.  I will post pictures periodically on improvements we are making.  We will have to do it little by little, but it will be a home before we know it.  

We both just love it despite negative backlash from people.  It is an older home so there will have to be updates and improvements and it will take close to 1.5-2 years for all of them to be complete.  But of course no one will ever be "finished" on their house.  There will always be maintenance and improvements and of course tastes change.  

I can't wait to get started and of course we will continue to pray for smooth transactions all around and for our move into a home to be seamless.  Please pray for us as well because this is our first home.  

Other than that, look for our improvements, "do it yourself" projects, and before and afters.

Thanks for reading!  

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Back from the blissful snow...

View outside our room...
Hello again. It has been awhile. I have been super busy what with the honeymoon and all. It was AWESOME by the way! I have completely and totally fallen in love with snow! I can't wait to go back and play till my hearts content.

I have always been fascinated and curious, but never would I have imagined this.



Our rental with 3 inches of snow on top of it!
We spent a glorious week together and we just loved every minute of it. We tried our hands (or legs) at snowboarding. It was fun and hard, but we will be back and we will totally dominate.


We also visited Allentown and went the the Liberty Bell "Shrine". It is the church the Liberty Bell was housed in during the Revolution. The British troops were confiscating all metal to melt down for bullets. The church housed the Liberty Bell and 11 other church bells in the area in it's basement. They had a cool replica that is the same size, shape, metallic composition as the original minus the huge crack. There are only 52 in existence besides the original in Philadelphia. There is one in every state capital building, one in Washington D.C., and then one at this small church. I got to ring the bell! It was loud and I barely tapped it. The guy that showed us around was a wealth of information. He told us things we had never learned in our history books. It was such a small and obscure place that we wouldn't have imagined that neat little museum would have existed.


Went by the Crayola Museum in Easton, PA.

We also tried to make a snowman. We failed miserably, but that's ok. We made a Jabba the snowman. We tried packing the snow and it wasn't working so well and we noticed its blob like shape so we made it a Jabba the Hutt snow figure. He was cute.
The beauty of everything was so breathtaking. I couldn't help but look outside and be joyful! God is always the best artist. Everything was like a painting in a museum. It was perfect everyday. Wow I miss it already. Shoot, I missed it when we were headed to the airport to fly back.

It's ok I will be back! Guaranteed!