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Thursday, May 31, 2007

Have a great weekend!!!

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

It all comes down to one

Really it does.
Fear brings worry.

When I’m in a situation that I can’t change, it’s all about trusting the One who holds the world in His hands.

If I’m scared, it’s probably because I am trusting in my own strength and feeling inadequate- as well I should!


Psalms 9:10
10 Those who know Your name will trust in You,
for You, LORD, have never forsaken those who seek You.

Psalms 13:5-6
5 But I trust in Your unfailing love;
my heart rejoices in Your salvation.
6 I will sing to the LORD,
for He has been good to me.

Psalms 20:7
7 Some trust in chariots and some in horses,
but we trust in the name of the LORD our God.

Psalms 25:1-2
To You, O LORD, I lift up my soul;
2 in You I trust, O my God.

Psalms 62:8
8 Trust in Him at all times, O people;
pour out your hearts to Him,
for God is our refuge.

It’s simple.


Tuesday, May 29, 2007

The Day After

It was a very hard day yesterday. We all have blood shot eyes today.
Life has changed for our home. It will never be the same.

I know that joining the Air Force is the right thing for him to do, I know that God is leading him down this road. I am so thankful that we have peace about it, but my heart is broken at the same time. It hurts to let someone go that you love so much.

I did not want to let him go yesterday. Just hold on and keep him my little boy forever. Unfortunately, that was not an option.

It’s hard to see them leave the nest. But, it was wonderful to see that his Bible was the first thing in his duffle bag.

My baby is becoming a man. A man that I am very proud of.

This is a new season for our family. Although my heart aches, I am excited to see all that God is going to do in our lives. God will get us through this. He is faithful. He has a plan that is so much bigger than I could ever imagine.

I love this quote, it is so fitting right now:

C. S. Lewis, the Four Loves

'To love at all is to be vulnerable. Love anything, and your heart will certainly be wrung and possibly broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact, you must give your heart to no one, not even to an animal. Wrap it up careful round with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements; lock it up safe in the casket or coffin of your selfishness. But in that casket - safe, dark, motionless, airless - it will change. It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable... The only place outside Heaven where you can be perfectly safe from all the dangers... of love is Hell.'

Monday, May 28, 2007

God Bless Our Troops

Today's the day.
Our oldest son goes into the Air Force.

I watched this video this morning and bawled my eyes out!
It has some of the most incrdible pictures I've seen yet.

Thank you to all the troops and their families.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Friday, May 25, 2007

Who are you fighting?

I was chatting with my friend Leigh this week (one of my best buddies!). She is an awesome Bible study teacher. She was telling me about her study last week and something she said just jumped out at me and I haven’t been able to stop thinking about it.

She was talking about this verse in Ephesians:

Eph 6:11-13
12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood,
but against principalities,
against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age,
against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.

She said, “so, if it has flesh and blood on it, we are not to fight it.”

That is so simple, yet incredibly profound (she gives the credit to the Holy Spirit because she didn’t even have it in her notes!).

Think about it- does the one you are fighting have flesh and blood on it? Then you are fighting the wrong one.

Let’s just chew on that one a while! I know I have been.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Thank you!

To Susie at Bluebird Blogs for doing such a nice job on my new header, I just love it! Check her out, she's very reasonable.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Good Enough

Ladies, please humor me while I preach at myself today…

Our God is not a God of ‘good enough.’ How many things do we do and just think, ‘oh it’s good enough?’ We might compare ourselves to someone else and compared to them we are doing good! So it’s good enough.

Is it in the way we run our homes, or the work we do, or being a wife- helpmeet? Or in being a mother.

The good enough attitude is so prevalent in our society today, but it’s not the attitude that God wants us to have. He does not expect perfection, but He expects us to give all of ourselves to whatever it is that He has called us too. Especially to Him!

The Bible is all too clear that to do the work of God is to go against the grain of life. To be compassionate to the needy in His name, to seek His will for our lives, to enter into partnership with Him, to raise our kids in the ways of the Lord- it all is hard work!

Without constant effort against the tide of sin, we will find ourselves swept far from God and His ways. It’s not always by choice, but sometimes because of inactivity. We just get lazy. We think…oh , it’s good enough.

As we are pulled away from His presence, we cool just as a coal cools when taken from the fire. As we cool, we dishonor the name of God for whom we once burned!

Sometimes we can be guilty of thinking of God too much as our friend and not as the Holy God that He is!

He doesn’t want our ‘good enough’ He wants our all.

We used to live in an older home. It needed so much work. I remember wanting to paint my dining room. It had several layers of wallpaper on the walls. It needed to be torn off and have the walls repaired and put the primer on and then the paint.

Oh no, that would have taken too much time, I just painted right over that wallpaper. Well, at first it was fine, it was good enough. However, as time went on you could see that it really was horrible. You could see the seams and the wallpaper buckling and it looked awful.

Eventually I had to do it right and go through all the steps. It was a ton of work, but when done right it looked great and added value to the home.

Sometime we make things seem ‘good’ on the outside but really there are layers that need to torn off under the nice pretty paint job.

How many times have we had to choose between serving God or serving ourselves?
Doing what He wants us to do or doing what we want to do?

This is a test in it’s truest form; serve God and deny yourself or serve yourself and deny God.

I have been in this position more often then I care to admit, but can say this first hand. The blessings I receive when serving the Lord far out weighed the miniscule moment of feeling good when serving myself.

John 14:15-16
15 "If you love me, you will obey what I command.

1 John 2:3-6
3 We know that we have come to know Him if we obey His commands.

4 The man who says, "I know Him," but does not do what He commands is a liar, and the truth is not in him.
5 But if anyone obeys His word, God's love is truly made complete in him. This is how we know we are in Him:
6 Whoever claims to live in Him must walk as Jesus did.

Heb 5:8-10
8 Although He was a son, He learned obedience from what he suffered (that's powerful!)

9 and, once made perfect, He became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey Him

I can remember a time when I asked my son to clean his bedroom. He was in there for an hour. He came out of his room with a beautifully drawn picture for me! He was so proud. I asked if he had cleaned up his room and he said, “No Mommy, but I drew you a picture!” As sweet as that was, it wasn’t obedience.

Sometimes I do the same thing…God tells me what to do and I come up with a much better idea!

Partial obedience is disobedience.

Lord help me (us) to get beyond, GOOD ENOUGH and give You our best!

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Fun with my baby brother!

He was being a real party pooper and would not smile for the camera so I was teasing him when he decided to shock us all and give me a big LOUD kiss!

Monday, May 21, 2007

The countdown begins

The oldest son is leaving for Air Force boot camp one week from today.

To answer your question…I’m doing good.

I am always asked, “how are YOU feeling about this?”
Well, we prayed about this before Matt signed up and God has given us all peace that he is doing the right thing.

It is tough knowing that I won’t see him for long periods of time, I will miss his face around here! He has the best sense of humor. He makes me laugh all the time.
It is going to be so hard!

God’s Word says:
Proverbs 22:6
Train a child in the way he should go,
and when he is old he will not turn from it.

The thing I am focusing on right now is “go.” It does not say, “train up a child and then hope he/she never goes.”

The job I am so honored to have, is to train up my children to be prepared for God’s plan and purpose. I pray that I’ve done that. Many things have been flying through my mind as time come closer for him to leave- did I tell him this?…, or did we prepare him for that?…
At this point I find peace in the fact that he has a personal relationship with the Lord. He is God’s kid too!

The Amplified version of that verse is:
Proverbs 22:6
Train up a child in the way he should go [and in keeping with his individual gift or bent], and when he is old he will not depart from it.

That’s been our prayer all these years, God help us to prepare them for what YOUR unique plan is for their lives.

I’ve made so many mistakes in the raising of my children these past 19 years. I’m so glad that God is merciful! In spite of his imperfect parents, Matt is a really great person.

I know that He has His hand on my son, no matter where this life takes him.
I want my children to be in the middle of God’s will for their lives. Even if it is scary to me, I know that is the best place for them.

I trust that the Lord loves him infinitely more than I could ever imagine and will be with him everywhere he goes.

He will be gone for 4 years (give or take a short leave here and there). I don’t know where the road of life will take him. He could come back with a wife and have a child by then! Or, he may never choose to move back here.
You always hear about how fast they grow up and how the time flies, now I believe it.

Life will never be the same around here after next Monday. I’m sad for myself because I will miss him, but I am so glad that he is excited to go and start this new chapter in his life.

Hug your babies girls, it really does go by too quickly!

Saturday, May 19, 2007

Friday, May 18, 2007

What's Your View of Things Today?

“For in the time of trouble He shall hide me in His pavilion;
in the secret place of His tabernacle He shall hide me;
He shall set me high upon a rock.” Psalms 27:5

Do you know what happens when God sets you high upon a rock? For one thing, it changes your perspective. You see things differently.

I often tell people who are struggling to step back and look at the big picture. Separate yourself from the pain and hurt of your circumstances and think about what is really going on here.

We went to Niagara Falls one year for our family vacation. The first view we had of the falls was from high up in the Skylon Tower. It was an absolutely breathtaking view!
I had never seen anything so beautiful and serene.

Our next view of the falls was from street level. It was a completely different picture from down there. The water is so loud as it roars over the falls, you can feel the thundering waves crashing to the bottom.

There is also a mist coming up from the water and the falls seem to create its own wind. It is an awesome sight to see from up in the tower, and a very intimidating one to see from the ground.

Where did that serenity from high up in the tower go? It's was frightening at this level.

Were there two sets of falls that we experienced that day?
No, just two different perspectives of the falls.
God wants us to look at our circumstances in light of how awesome He is, not how loud and frightening our storm is.

In light of how God looks at our life, every storm seems to quiet. It is not that the storm goes away, but the roar of the circumstances dull in His awesome and magnificent presence.

Let Him set you high upon that rock today and take a look at things from HIS point of view!
Lord, help each of us today to see out lives from YOUR point of view, draw us so close to You that we aren't frightened by the roar of the circumstances.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Just for fun!

A merry heart does good like a medicine,
so here's some quotes from Steven Wright that make me laugh:

OK, so what's the speed of dark?

How do you tell when you're out of invisible ink?

When everything is coming your way, you're in the wrong lane.

Shin: a device for finding furniture in the dark.

I intend to live forever - so far, so good.

If Barbie is so popular, why do you have to buy her friends?

Boycott shampoo! Demand the REAL poo!

What happens if you get scared half to death twice?

I couldn't repair your brakes, so I made your horn louder.

If at first you don't succeed, destroy all evidence that you tried.

If at first you don't succeed, then skydiving definitely isn't for you.

It's a small world, but I wouldn't want to have to paint it.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Safe arms to rest in!

Don't mess with my cubs!

I am just sure this is how God feels about us.
Psalms 16:1
Keep me safe, O God, for in You I take refuge. NIV

Prov 29:25
25 Fear of man will prove to be a snare,but whoever trusts in the LORD is kept safe. NIV

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Shining our light=doing good to others

As you probably can tell, I’ve been super busy lately with not much computer time. Sorry!

But you have been on my heart, and I do have some thoughts that I want to share with you.

God has put my life into a whole new “mode” and frankly it’s freaking me out a little. I’ve always been surrounded by Christians and submerged in church activities and ministry.

However, that is not the case this season in my life. Instead, I find myself outside of “church life” and spending a lot of time with unbelievers, and I must admit I am loving it!

I’ve been thinking about how God called us to be a light.

Jesus said:
Matthew 5:14-16
14 "You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden.
15 Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house.
16 In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.

I’ve always known that and thought that I was being a light all the time.
But now I see, that the truth is -
I am WAY more comfortable being a light in a light place!
Funny- God never said it was about MY comfort did He???

A light that is turned on in the daytime is not as effective as a light that is turned on in the dark.

What does it mean to be a light in a dark place???
Just like the verse says- “that they may see your good deeds.”

I used to think that to be a light you had to be preaching at people, but that is not what this verse says.
We are to do good to others and THAT is what causes our light to shine.

Then God opens hearts so that maybe we will be able to share the saving knowledge of God.
Or maybe it will be a seed in their hearts and someone else will present the gospel to them.

What do you think it means to do good?

In my life right now, one of the ways is to open my home on the nights that we have several of our motocross riders (ages 7-10 yrs) and their families come out to practice on our track.

Looking out from my deck:

Check out the little guy jumping!

I would love to hear if God is challenging you to be a light in the world!

Monday, May 14, 2007

Lauren dancing with her brother!
Psalms 30:11-12
11 You turned my wailing into dancing;
You removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy,
12 that my heart may sing to You and not be silent.
O LORD my God, I will give You thanks forever. NIV

This little girl could be any one of us, once we had no hope, but now we can dance!
John 14:1818 I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. NIV
Thank you Lord that You don't leave us as orphans- You come to us, You adopt us, You fill us, You LOVE us!

Sunday, May 13, 2007

A Wonderful Day!

Lauren loves corn on the cob!

Lauren & Daddy

The whole gang:

The end of a long day!

Happy Mother's Day!

And a special prayer for the women who want so desperately to be a Mother but whose arms are empty, you are on my heart today.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Take time to smell the flowers!

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

Worship Him Today

Romans 12 (Message Bible)
So here's what I want you to do, God helping you.
Take your everyday, ordinary life-your sleeping, eating, going to work, and walking around life- and place if before God as an offering.

So, what are you doing today? What's on the agenda?

Place it before the Lord, and worship Him in it.

Be conscience of the fact that He wants to be right in the middle of every part of our day today.

*Everything we offer Him, He gave to us first!
*Worship is a lifestyle, not a Sunday thing.
*God does not NEED our worship, but He loves it!
*It is as natural to to live.

Worshipping Him all day long even during the "everyday" stuff - does not make Him common or everyday. He IS holy.

He is "Hakadosh" - "The Holy One"
He is entirely set apart from the common.

But He delights that we bring that holiness and majesty into our everyday lives.

That's when we are changed by His glory!

It makes the everyday, ordinary things become an avenue by which to honor Him and see Him magnified!

Tuesday, May 8, 2007

HE... Sets the Stars in the Sky!

This is in the news today:

Scientists have detected a stellar explosion that is the brightest and most energetic ever recorded,

"Of all exploding stars ever observed, this was the king," said Alex Filippenko of the University of California, Berkeley.

Heb 11:3
3 By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God's command,

Scientists think SN 2006gy could be a sign of things to come in our own galaxy. Eta Carinae, the most luminous star in our Milky Way, is located some 7,000 light-years away and seems poised to undergo its own explosion at any moment.

"This could happen tomorrow or it could happen 1,000 years from now," said Mario Livio of the Space Telescope Science Institute in Baltimore, who was not involved in the research.

It always gets me when people who do not know our Creator try to talk intelligently about His creation. It must be so perplexing for them to intensely study this world and its elements and yet deny the existence of the very One who made it all.

There will come a day when all will see and understand what is “really going on here.”
I look forward to that day!

Isaiah 45:22-24
22 "Turn to me and be saved,
all you ends of the earth;
for I am God, and there is no other.
23 By myself I have sworn,
my mouth has uttered in all integrity
a word that will not be revoked:
Before me every knee will bow;
by me every tongue will swear.
24 They will say of me, 'In the LORD alone
are righteousness and strength.'"

We are not surprised at these signs:
Luke 21:25
25 "There will be signs in the sun, moon and stars.

It is exciting to hear these things because we know that God is in control.
One day there will be a bigger light show than any of us could ever dream or think of!

Matt 24:29-31
"'the sun will be darkened,
and the moon will not give its light;
the stars will fall from the sky,
and the heavenly bodies will be shaken.'
30 "At that time the sign of the Son of Man will appear in the sky,
and all the nations of the earth will mourn.
They will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of the sky,
with power and great glory.

Here is what we are called to do in the mean time:
1 Thess 5:6
6 So then, let us not be like others, who are asleep, but let us be alert and self-controlled.

1 Thess 5:9-11
9 For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ.
10 He died for us so that, whether we are awake or asleep, we may live together with him.
11 Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.

Monday, May 7, 2007

He Has Everything I Need!

Years ago (maybe 18 or so) I was attending a Bible study. I was a young Christian and didn’t know anyone in the Bible study very well. The study was called “Women of the Bible”. I was eager to learn about the women of the Bible because I did not have much knowledge of the women in the Word, especially the Old Testament women.

The first day of class, the teacher asked us to go around the room and share our name and talk about a woman in the Bible that we hoped to be like. I froze. I only knew of a few women in the Bible, and I was sure I didn’t want to be like Eve and I had heard about Lot’s wife and I wasn’t looking to emulate her either.

As we went around the room of about 15 women, they each shared about how they want to be like Ruth or Deborah or some other woman that I had never heard of. I was wracking my brain trying to think of the women in the Bible.
Mary- no, Elizabeth- no… then it hit me. Right when my turn came- I remembered a story that had captured my heart and I said,

“I want to be like that women who risked it all and crawled through the crowd to get to Jesus because she was sure He had exactly what she needed!”

They all looked at me like, wow- check out the new girl!
I was so excited, not only because I had a great answer but because I felt like God had just spoken to my heart.

I don’t care what I have to go through- I want YOU God! I want what You have for me! I could go everywhere else and search and search, but I won’t.

That has been my heart's cry ever since that day.

I will bloody my knees to get to the One who has my hope and healing in His hands.

Mark 5:25-34
25 Now a certain woman had a flow of blood for twelve years,
26 and had suffered many things from many physicians. She had spent all that she had and was no better, but rather grew worse.
27 When she heard about Jesus, she came behind Him in the crowd and touched His garment.
28 For she said, "If only I may touch His clothes, I shall be made well."
29 Immediately the fountain of her blood was dried up, and she felt in her body that she was healed of the affliction.
30 And Jesus, immediately knowing in Himself that power had gone out of Him, turned around in the crowd and said, "Who touched My clothes?"
31 But His disciples said to Him, "You see the multitude thronging You, and You say, 'Who touched Me?'"
32 And He looked around to see her who had done this thing.
33 But the woman, fearing and trembling, knowing what had happened to her, came and fell down before Him and told Him the whole truth.
34 And He said to her, "Daughter, your faith has made you well. Go in peace, and be healed of your affliction."

Sunday, May 6, 2007

Will you?

The important word in this song is WILL. It's a choice.

This song and these pictures are awesome. I love seeing people with their hands up in reckless abandon to our Holy God!

Saturday, May 5, 2007

Saturday Funnies

Friday, May 4, 2007

Live for Him

Don’t wait until you’re in the pig-pen or belly of a whale
to realize that God has a purpose for you and it’s to live for HIM.
He loves you.
He has NEVER walked away from you.
He pursues you.
He draws you.
He waits patiently.

Lord, let me be like Paul.
Once his eyes were open, he never looked back.
He didn’t consider the world and all it’s “glory”
to be anything worth leaving You for.
Give me that heart Lord!
That YOU are worth crawling through the crowd for.

Phil 3:8-9
What is more, I consider everything a loss
compared to the surpassing greatness
of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord,
for whose sake I have lost all things.
I consider them rubbish, that I may gain Christ
and be found in Him

Thursday, May 3, 2007

I Have To Believe

Ok girls, in light of all we've been talking about, let's worship!
Throw up your hands and let's give Him praise!!

I Have to Believe by Rita Springer

I have to believe that He sees my darkness
I have to believe that He knows my pain
I have to lift up my hands to worship
Worship His name

I have to declare that He is my refuge
I have to deny that I am alone
I have to lift up my eyes to the mountains
It's where my help comes from

He said that He's forever faithful
He said that He's forever true
He said that He can move mountains
And if He can move mountains
He can move my mountain
He can move Your mountain too

I have to stand tall when the wind blows me over
I have to stand strong when I'm weak and afraid
I have to grab hold, hold of the garments
Garments of praise

I have to sing praise when the hour is midnight
He unlocks these chains that bind up my soul
My sin and my shame, He has forgiven, and made me whole

I have to believe

Now, don't you feel better??
What a better way to celebrate the National Day of Prayer than worshipping our MIGHTY, INCREDIBLE, POWERFUL, FAITHFUL GOD!

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Part 2 ~He Heals Our Brokenhearts~

As I lay awake in bed last night thinking about your responses and personal email, I felt that we were not done with this subject.

I told you the story of ONE of the times that God healed my heart. There have been so many situations that I needed healing in my heart. Some were like the one I described and others were “a walk” of healing.

I love it when you sense that God has just done a healing work in your heart, but not all healing happens that way.

I kind of picture some of our pain like a spider web. Our heart can be broken by an event or events and the effects can get into all different relationships and situations that we don’t even realize at the onset. Then as we walk through this life, different seasons reveal the need for healing in other ways. I hope this makes sense, I feel like I’m talking in circles!

Let me tell you about another time when my heart was broken (like a spider web). When I was a young girl around 8 years old, I was sexually abused by a friend of the family for over a year of my life. This has affected so much of my life. I have forgiven the man and God has healed my heart, but that does not mean that it is over and done.

There are still times that fears and pain will come up that I can trace back to this event. When I see it affecting my relationships, I have to address the root of the issue and go to God with it.

When I was a teenager, I heard a speaker at church talking about God healing people who had been molested. He talked about forgiveness being part of the process of healing. I really broke down that night. I prayed for God to heal me and prayed for the man who had abused me all those times.

I felt God’s love and I felt protected.

I know that God has healed me because if I saw that man today, I would share God’s love with him. I could tell him that I forgive him. Not because he deserves it, but because I need that same forgiveness from God that I don’t deserve.

I could let my heart be bitter towards him and wait until he begs on his hands and knees for me to forgive him, but that would only hurt me.

Matt 6:14-15
14 For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.

15 But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.

I won’t let satan continue the abuse in me by holding on to unforgiveness. To keep bitterness in me is to continue being a victim. I don’t want to be a victim ever again.

God healed my heart, and the “sting” of the pain is gone. But, I still remember what happened, I still struggle with trust and security.

Thankfully though I now have a relationship with my Heavenly Father that is completely secure and I know that He will never stop loving me.

Your emails have blessed me so much. When I read what some of you have been through I cried. Partly because of your pain, but mostly because I see the mighty hand of our incredible God in the words you speak now and the things that He has revealed to you through it all!

The truth of the matter is that life can break your heart. But GOD. He can bind us up and bring healing. He makes beauty out of life’s mud.

Bring your pain and sorrow to Him. Let Him hold you close and heal you.

Psalms 40:2-3
2 He lifted me out of the slimy pit,
out of the mud and mire;
He set my feet on a rock
and gave me a firm place to stand.
3 He put a new song in my mouth,
a hymn of praise to our God.
Many will see and fear
and put their trust in the LORD.

Thank you for giving me the honor of sharing your hearts with me!
(to be continued....?)

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